It’s Day 148!!
THE HOLY SPIRIT AND THE CHURCH IN THE LITURGY
For the next couple of days we will be talking about the role of the Holy Spirit
Because what Jesus made POSSIBLE through the Paschal Mystery, the Holy Spirit makes ACTUAL and brings to us via the Church the SACRAMENTS
Paragraph 1091 says, “‘God’s masterpieces,’ the sacraments of the New Covenant.”
We call them the 7 Sacraments
Paragraph 1092 says, “In this sacramental dispensation of Christ’s mystery the Holy Spirit acts in the same way as at other times in the economy of salvation…”
How many times have you ever said you wish you were around in the age of Jesus?
The Catechism affirms that because of the Sacraments, we are as close if not closer to the Lord Jesus as any other time in salvation history
IT IS REMARKABLE!!
Paragraph 1092 continues, “Finally the Spirit of communion unites the Church to the life and mission of Christ.”
THE HOLY SPIRIT PREPARES FOR THE RECEPTION OF CHRIST
We have to cooperate
The Sacraments are not magic
They are powerful
They are the actions of God and work of God on this earth
The Holy Spirit prepares our hearts
We have to respond and cooperate with FAITH
We are going to look at the connection between the liturgy of the Old Covenant and the liturgy of the New Covenant
A lot of things that we do has its roots in the Hebrew Scriptures and Hebrew practice of living out the faith
As Christians we are the FULFILLMENT of everything that was laid down in the law of Moses and the Jewish way of worship
It is fulfilled in Jesus
So there we have it!!
THIS IS AWESOME!!
IT IS SO GOOD!!
Paragraph 1091 says, “In the liturgy the Holy Spirit is teacher of the faith of the People of God and artisan of ‘God’s masterpieces,’ the sacraments of the New Covenant. The desire and work of the Spirit and heart of the Church is that we may live from the life of the risen Christ.”
This is what we are MADE FOR
That is the desire of the Holy Spirit
Paragraph 1091 continues, “When the Spirit encounters in us the response of faith which he has aroused in us, he brings about genuine cooperation. Through it, the liturgy becomes the common work of the Holy Spirit and the Church.”
Think about this…
The Sacraments are not magic
God is ALWAYS the initiator of prayer
God is ALWAYS the one who moves FIRST
Whenever we pray, it is ALWAYS a response to God’s initiative
You NEVER tried to get God’s attention by your prayer
It is ALWAYS God trying to get YOUR attention when He moves you to prayer
Even if you think that God needs to hear you right now
He is the one who got YOUR attention
We don’t even have FAITH on our own
It is the Holy Spirit that AROUSES our faith
He brings about a GENUINE COOPERATION
The Sacraments are NOT MAGIC
They do not happen TO US
They happen IN COOPERATION WITH US
That is one of the reasons that every time we celebrate the Sacraments and every time we pray, SOMETHING HAPPENS
We can go to Communion every single day and receive the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, our Lord and STILL BE UNCHANGED
Because if we do not COOPERATE and shape our wills to the Father’s Will and surrender to God, then we have entered into what you may call a BOUND SACRAMENT
God is there, active, and moving
We let God come THIS far but no farther
We let God go THIS deep into our hearts but no deeper
We let God change THIS part of our lives but NOTHING BEYOND THAT
Paragraph 1092 says, “[The Holy Spirit] prepares the Church to encounter her Lord; he recalls and makes Christ manifest to the faith of the assembly. By his transforming power, he makes the mystery of Christ present here and now. Finally the Spirit of communion unites the Church to the life and mission of Christ.”
The Christian liturgy springs from and fulfills the Jewish liturgy
There are so many common elements
There is a series of books by Dr. Brant Pitre
He is a professor and works for The Augustine Institute
He is a Biblical scholar in the Catholic World
“Jesus and the Jewish Roots of The Eucharist”
“Jesus and the Jewish Roots of Mary”
Etc. etc. etc.
He always draws the readings from the New or Old Testaments and fleshes out where they come from in Jewish liturgy and Jewish worship
Fr. Mike is now telling a story about Bible in a Year
All the things that may seem like a mystery in a Catholic ordination are things we see in the Old Testament
Because the Jewish liturgy PREFIGURES the Christian liturgy
Christian liturgy FULFILLS Jewish liturgy
The Old Testament PREFIGURES the New Testament
The New Testament FULFILLS the Old Testament
Paragraph 1094 says, “Thus the flood and Noah’s ark prefigured salvation by Baptism, as did the cloud and the crossing of the Red Sea. Water from the rock was the figure of the spiritual gifts of Christ, and manna in the desert prefigured the Eucharist, ‘the true bread from heaven.’”
THIS IS INCREDIBLE!!
WHAT AN INCREDIBLE GIFT!!
So what do we do?
Paragraph 1098 says, “The assembly should prepare itself to encounter its Lord and to become ‘a people well disposed.’...The Holy Spirit seeks to awaken faith, conversion of heart, and adherence to the Father’s will. These dispositions are the precondition both for the reception of other graces conferred in the celebration itself and the fruits of new life which the celebration is intended to produce afterward.”
The more and more we can ask the Holy Spirit to awaken our faith, convert our heart, and help us adhere to the Father’s Will, the more and more we can receive those graces that are part of the liturgy and sacraments
Also the more and more we can bear fruit in our lives
We are never meant to show up to the Sacraments and leave the exact same way that we arrived
The intention is that we are ALWAYS CHANGED
Paragraph 1097 says, “The liturgical assembly derives its unity from the ‘communion of the Holy Spirit’ who gathers the children of God into the one Body of Christ. This assembly transcends racial, cultural, social-indeed, all human affinities.”
Which is why we call it the CATHOLIC Church
It is the UNIVERSAL Church that transcends
The Catholic Church is MORE IMPORTANT than any racial division
The Catholic Church is MORE CENTRAL than any cultural, social, or socio-economic division
Think of a country that might be the enemy of whatever country you live in right now
Every Catholic in THAT country is YOUR BROTHER AND SISTER
BECAUSE THE CHURCH TRANSCENDS THAT!!
If you are tempted to have RACIST thoughts and RACIST actions, the Church tells us that these Baptized Christians are our BROTHER AND SISTER
That reality is VASTLY MORE IMPORTANT than any kind of difference you have because of the different amount of melanin you have in your skin, or a different culture, or a different language, or a different way of life
The FACT is that because we have been brought into the Body of Christ by the UNITING HOLY SPIRIT the MOST IMPORTANT THING about you and me is that you are a SON OF GOD or a DAUGHTER OF GOD
The most CONNECTING THING that we have with our brothers and sisters is that we are brothers and sisters OF THE SAME HEAVENLY FATHER
That transcends racial, cultural, social, and ALL HUMAN AFFINITIES
You probably already knew that
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!