Monday, February 21, 2005

Christian Tradition - February 21 - The Communion of Saints

[It's been a while without these quotes, but I figured they are nice daily "whiffs of grace" worth bringing back to FCA. You'll notice that now my Catholic intentions are out in the open, I've replaced the more innocuous word "heritage" with the more precise and stirring word "tradition". It's nice to be able to strecth my legs on my own blog.]

"If those who believe in Christ are one, then through the mystery of the sacrament the entire body is present where bodily eyes see but a single member. Solitude prevents no one from speaking in the plural; nor is it inappropriate for the multitude of believers to speak in the singular, for through the power of the Holy Spirit, who is present in each and fills all, it is clear that the solitude is full of people and the multitude forms a unity.

"Our holy Fathers regarded this intimate relationship and communion of believers in Christ as so certain that they included it in the creed stating the Catholic faith, and commanded us frequently to call it to mind along with the other basic elements of Christian belief. For immediately after we say: 'I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Church,' we add: 'the communion of saints.' Thus in the very act by which we bear witness to the God in whom we believe, we also affirm the communion that marks the Church which is one with him. For this communion of saints in the unity of faith is such that, because they believe in one God, are reborn in one baptism, and are strengthened by the one Holy Spirit, they are admitted, through the grace of adoption, into the one everlasting life."

Peter Damian (AD 1007-1072), Liber Qui Dicitur Dominus Vobiscum 6. 10: PL 145, 236.239

Damian was the bishop of Ostia. He worked closely with eight popes as diplomat and legate. The number and range of his writings were considerable.

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