Thursday, 18 August 2011

A sermon in which Jesus Christ does not figure is useless…. (continued)

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Thus Mary’s intercession is necessary because all graces come to us through her hands… We must preach the cross of Our Lord against the evil spirit of the World, which is the spirit of the devil, which is the spirit of error, the spirit of attachment to earthly goods. What is the most obvious means of detaching oneself from the spirit of the world? It is the spirit of the Cross. It is necessary to preach the Cross so that the people really unite themselves to the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ and His sacrifice.
You will preach the doctrine of the Cross. St Paul preached nothing else: “Jesus Christ and Him crucified” (I Cor. 2.2), as he himself said. That was his preaching; it will be yours too, I am certain.
In the fifth chapter of the Acts of the Apostles(5:30-33), we read: “The God of our fathers hath raised up Jesus, whom you put to death, hanging Him upon a tree. Him hath God exalted with His right hand, to be Prince and Saviour, to give repentance to Israel, and remission of sins. And we are witnesses of these things and the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to all that obey him, when they had heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they thought to put them to death.” This shows another important side of things. Preaching Our Lord Jesus Christ, which is the fruit of the Holy Ghost in the ministry we have to give, leads to persecutions. We mustn’t deceive ourselves: we are for Our Lord the world is against Our Lord. Sinners are against Our Lord. Our Lord Himself said it: the world hates me, and it will hate you of you love and serve me (Jn. 15: 18-21)
Remember the magnificent story of St Stephen. If there is one of the first Christians who manifested the presence of the Holy Ghost within him, it was St Stephen. We must love to read and re-read the seventh chapter of the Acts of the Apostles, which recounts the story of St Stephen, because all the manifestations of the Holy Ghost appear in him. His faith is so lively that the good God even allows Stephen to see Him: “But he being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly to heaven, saw the glory of God and Jesus standing on the right hand of God” (7:55). The good God gave him the grace to see His glory before he died. To be continued…

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