Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Holy Spirit or the World's Spirit?

In a recent homily, Pope Frances said, "… We cannot pick and mix, no? A bit of the Holy Spirit, a bit of the spirit of this world… No! It’s one thing or the other.” 
Pope Francis said that we need to open our hearts up to the consolation of the Holy Spirit so that this consolation, "allows us to understand these commandments."
So we either follow the world's teachings. Or we follow Jesus' teachings. 
One thing or the other.
One of the phrases used in recent years is "cafeteria" Catholics. This term is used to describe those Catholics who pick and choose what church teachings that they are going to follow. "Pick and mix," to use the pope's words.
We do not always understand the teachings. We do not always understand the why or how or what of them. Perhaps we have a strong opinion that goes against the teaching. 
But our opinion is not what is needed here. 
Prayer. Prayer is needed. Prayer to the Holy Spirit to help us understand the Church's teaching, to help us inform our conscience. To help us know - which spirit are we following?
The Holy Spirit? Or the world's spirit?
"If you believe what you like in the gospels, and reject what you don't like, it is not the gospel you believe, but yourself." - St. Augustine


Nancy Shuman said...

YES!! "our opinion is not what is needed here." This is all so GOOD. The very title of this post is one we would do well to carry around as we look at our daily situations.

Mary N. said...

Great post, Colleen! Loved the quote from St Augustine too!

Colleen said...

Nancy, amen. I agree. It is one way to guard our hearts.

Mary, thank you! I have lucked out lately on finding just the right quote. Luck? No, God-incidence!

Barb Schoeneberger said...

Love that quote from St. Augustine.

You're so right about praying for understanding. That is one of the gifts of the Holy Ghost. Any time I've not understood Church teaching, or have wanted to delve deeper into it, I ask God's help. Never has He failed me. Always I've come to love Jesus more and am grateful for the Church and the Magisterium.

Colleen said...

Barb, amen! Totally agree.
Love that quote too. I have found some great ones lately!