PS: 6th Sunday of Easter

Picture: 
Body: 

Each week, a Dominican member of the Province of St. Joseph’s Preaching Advisory Board prepares this Preacher’s Sketchbook in anticipation of the upcoming Sunday Mass. The idea of the Preacher’s Sketchbook is to take quotations from the authority of the Church–the Pope, the Fathers of the Church, documents of the Councils, the saints–that can help spark ideas for the Sunday homily. Just as an artist’s sketchbook preserves ideas for later elaboration, so we hope the Preacher’s Sketchbook will provide some ideas for homiletical elaboration.

Pope Francis, On Heaven and Earth

There are sectors within every religion that by highlighting the normative leave aside the human, they reduce religion to what has to be prayed in the morning, during the afternoon and at night and what is going to happen if one does not do it. There is a spiritual harassment of adherents and of many people weak in spirit, that can lead them to a lack of freedom. Another feature of these sectors is that they always are motivated by the search for power… The authentic wants to be sought, but when that means only the normative, fulfilling regulations, it falls into the other extreme, into a purism that also is not religious.

Pope Francis, On Heaven and Earth

I maintain that the leadership from a congregation cannot be equated to the leadership of an NGO (Non– Governmental Organization)… [Holiness] is the command from God to Abraham. The word holiness is like a springboard to the transcendent. In an NGO, the word holiness does not fit. Yes, there has to be a socially acceptable conduct, honesty, an idea of how the NGO is going to carry out its mission, and an internal policy. It can run phenomenally inside of a secular setting, but with regards to religion, holiness is unavoidable for a leader.

Pope Benedict XVI, Introduction to Christianity

In our Creed the Church is understood in terms of the Holy Spirit, as the center of the Spirit’s activity in the world. Concretely, she is seen from the two angles of baptism (penance) and the Eucharist. This sacramental approach produces a completely theocentric understanding of the Church: the foreground is occupied, not by the group of men composing her, but by the gift of God that turns man around toward a new being that he cannot give to himself, to a communion that he can only receive as a gift. Yet precisely this theocentric image of the Church is entirely human, entirely real.

The Second Vatican Council, Dei Verbum

To see Jesus is to see His Father. For this reason Jesus perfected revelation by fulfilling it through his whole work of making Himself present and manifesting Himself: through His words and deeds, His signs and wonders, but especially through His death and glorious resurrection from the dead and final sending of the Spirit of truth. Moreover He confirmed with divine testimony what revelation proclaimed, that God is with us to free us from the darkness of sin and death, and to raise us up to life eternal.

The Christian dispensation, therefore, as the new and definitive covenant, will never pass away and we now await no further new public revelation before the glorious manifestation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The Second Vatican Council, Dei Verbum

This tradition which comes from the Apostles develop in the Church with the help of the Holy Spirit. For there is a growth in the understanding of the realities and the words which have been handed down. This happens through the contemplation and study made by believers, who treasure these things in their hearts through a penetrating understanding of the spiritual realities which they experience, and through the preaching of those who have received through Episcopal succession the sure gift of truth. For as the centuries succeed one another, the Church constantly moves forward toward the fullness of divine truth until the words of God reach their complete fulfillment in her.