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Sunday, December 05, 2010

Just to confuse those who are already and really confused about Catholicism

That's from the commemorative Mass of St. Andrew Dung Lac and companions, martyrs. The entrance antiphon says "We should glory in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. For to us who are saved the word of the cross is the power of God."
Now 1 Cor 1:18 says "For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." So why the discrepancy?
Because the Church reads and teaches Scriptures in a more holistic manner. For example, the analogy of faith, understood in Catholicism, understands that Scriptures is a whole, and so its parts must be understood in light of all the deposit of faith. The New Testament actually tells us at times that we who are baptized are saved, that we are being saved, and that we can hope for that Day when we will be saved! St. Peter wrote, "baptism now saves you" (1 Peter 3:21), by the grace of God, but the story does not end there, because concupiscence remains. And so, again by God's grace, we are being saved throughout our lives through the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit. If that work were to stop, through our own fault, not only would we stop growing in holiness, there is a real danger that we would fall from grace, as that in itself, in mortal sin, stops this great work until we reconcile with God. And finally, there is the future when we will be saved, if we endure and remain faithful to God.
So why did the antiphon speak of "we who are saved"? I think it is because that statement is true as well as being an inspiration to confident thanksgiving, for thanksgiving -- the eucharist, who is Jesus Christ himself -- should be the source and summit of our Christian life.

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