Tuesday, February 2, 2010
IMPORTANCE OF SPIRITUALITY
CATHOLIC theology teaches us that all Christians are bound to strive for holiness as they journey toward God.Regular and secular religious, however, are to seek holiness in an incomparably greater manner than that of the ordinary Christian's. Our very vocation is to live in the state of holiness – to strive daily, even hourly, to become saints.
This manner of holiness is taken upon ourselves by our profession. The manner of obtaining perfection and holiness is proper to each religious order, although essentially perfection and holiness are the same for everyone, consisting in an intimate union with God through love, in a participation in His nature and life.
God would not establish such a variety of religious institutes and inspire their founders unless He approved this difference in their mode of spirituality. We read that, ‘each religious order should have its own nature and character and it is necessary that it preserve them, if it desires to occupy the place destined for it by God in the Mystical Body of Christ, which is beautified in many ways.’
Continuing further, we find that this goal is reached only by the imitation of Christ and identification with Him. The perfection of Christ, however, is infinite and proper to Christ alone. Perfection is achieved only in the fullness of His Mystical Body, in the unity that exists in its many members. Among these members are the various religious orders, which possess their own individual spirituality.
Each order completes this Body only by the preservation of its own spirituality, sanctifying its own members, by its own proper rule. If this is not accomplished, what further reason can there be for the existence of any particular order and its members? The religious would continue to live on, but on a false basis. They would be traitors to the original purpose of their order and would be straying completely from the path of sanctity.