od, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, has a lofty, elevated, sublime thought on man, unimaginable to the very creature made in the image and likeness of his Creator. He wants to live with every man a spousal relationship, not in the profane sense of the term, but in its original, deep meaning, which is expressed by Adam himself the moment he sees Eve before his eyes: “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called 'woman,' for she was taken out of man” (Gen 2, 23).
the Baptismal waters, he gave us a new birth. He made us his adoptive sons, he elevated us up to him, he constituted us his life forever. In Him, with him, through him, we are life of God’s life, life in His life. We are a single life, not ours, but the one of God.
Sac. Costantino di Bruno
On the model of the Most Holy Mary, waiting for the coming of the Lord
Reflections starting from the homily by H. H. Benedict XVI, 26 November, 2005
«Mary belonged to that part of the people of Israel which at the time of Jesus was waiting whole-heartedly for the Saviour's coming. And from the words and gestures narrated in the Gospel, we can see how she really lived immersed in the Prophets' words; she was entirely waiting for the Lord's coming» (Homily).
Son. She lives the waiting, by listening to the Lord’s word, and in the donation of her own life for its fulfilment. That is why she is Redemption Mother, because not only did she generate man’s Redeemer, but she became, with Him, a part of this mystery like nobody else. At the base of the cross she teaches us what it is and how to live the Christian waiting. Because at the base of the cross she learned entirely how to understand and live in the light of this divine immense love.
Sac. Giuseppe Deodato
AND BOTH THE WINE AND THE WINESKINS WILL BE RUINED
I WILL BETROTH YOU TO ME FOREVER (Hos 1,16.17.21-22)
That is how God admonishes his people through the prophet Jeremiah: “See how you behaved in the valley; consider what you have done. You are a swift she-camel running here and there, a wild donkey accustomed to the desert, sniffing the wind in her craving — in her heat who can restrain her?” (Cfr. Ger 2, 23-25). The craving of Israel is his idolatry, the always immediate readiness to deny the Lord. What to do for this not to happen again? The desert, a place of absence of any kind of idols of the peoples, had been for the people a particular time of grace, during which they had learned to live on the Lord’s Word. In the desert the Lord had educated his people for forty years to trust in Him, in his Word, in which life is for whoever observes and puts it into practice. The Lord wants to lead his people to the desert again, but this time for something infinitely great: in order to celebrate with him a real wedding, a stable and lasting covenant of love. God wants to make of his people his spouse forever and as a spouse he wants to talk to her heart.
HE HAS MADE US COMPETENT AS MINISTERS OF A NEW COVENANT (2Cor 3,1-6)
Saint Paul knows that everything in him is from God, from his grace. Nothing that is in him comes from him. God gives himself to him so that he may carry out with fruit his ministry. Being he perennially from God’s grace, he is also a fit minister of the New Covenant. That is, he is a minister capable of serving well, with fruit, the New Covenant that the Lord put in his hands, in order to announce it to every man and arrange for every one to come and be a part in it. He is a fit minister, because the grace operates with efficacy, whenever it is given according to the rules of the grace; the first of which is the holiness of he who is called to give it. The grace can be efficacious in the others only in one way, if it was efficacious in us. If it is not efficacious in us, it can never be in the others through us and we ourselves become unfit ministers of the New Covenant. When the grace is inefficacious in us, others can also stipulate the covenant with God, but this covenant does not produce fruits through us. We are unfit ministers. This is the failure of much pastoral: the inefficacy of the grace of he who is its minister.
NEW WINE INTO NEW WINESKINS (Mk 2,18-22)
The new wine is the Gospel. The wine skin is the historical structure through which it lives. New wine is also the man pervaded with Holy Spirit. The new wine skin is his daily answer to every motion that the Spirit operates in his heart, mind, desires, in every thought of his. For every new wine a new wine skin is necessary, for every new understanding of the truth a new historical form of incarnating and living it is also necessary. The possible holiness for a soul is only one: the ready, immediate, prompt answer, without hesitation, to the Spirit of the Lord that in this moment moves the heart to act and the mind to enter into the highest and deepest truth. The Word is one and it is always the same; the comprehension of the only Word is always new, actual, very deep; life according to the Word is not given by the Word itself, just the way it sounds, but by the Holy Spirit that opens its meaning to a more and more full, perfect, holy understanding. Jesus wants the perennial novelty of his Truth neither to be sealed in the old wine skins of the Pharisees’ structures, nor the life of his Word to stop at the forms of yesterday, even if holy and perfect. The true life of his Word is in the today of the Holy Spirit and of his motion.
THE SPIRIT SENT HIM OUT INTO THE DESERT
NOW ESTABLISH MY COVENANT WITH YOU (Gn 9,8-15)
God has hardly sent the waters to the earth, from which every form of life had disappeared. Immediately after the deluge the Lord sees that sin has deeply weakened man and for this reason decides not to destroy him any more: “Never again will I curse the ground because of man, even though every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood. And never again will I destroy all living creatures, as I have done. As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease” (Gen 8,21-22). God manifests that it will no longer be from the outside that he will act for man’s salvation, but from the inside, from his heart. God will start just from man’s heart the work of reconstruction of man, of his new creature. In order to save man it is necessary to leave him alive and whatever is needed to his life. In its essence, this is God’s promise. This is the first covenant, but not the last one. This marks the beginning of salvation, but not its fulfilment. This truth must be proclaimed with clearness: it is Christ the perfect fulfilment of real salvation.
AND THIS WATER SYMBOLIZES BAPTISM (1Pt 3,18-22)
Saint Peter sees in the deluge the figure of Baptism. With Noah water purified the earth of every filthiness of evil. It killed the man sinner, but it did not kill man’s sin. The water of Baptism has a quite different action: it kills sin, but not the sinner. The sinner is cured by those waters, on the contrary he is born to new and eternal life in them; he is born as a real son of God, he shares in the divine nature. Those waters have so much power of sanctification as to remove all the filthiness of our spirit and soul. They contain the Holy Spirit that regenerates as new creatures. All this is possible thanks to the death and resurrection of Lord Jesus. In the death of Christ Jesus every sin of the soul and body is destroyed, while in the resurrection man comes back to new life, he is born as a new man. All this happens because man asks God to be renewed; however he asks it with the conscience of one who welcomes all the Word of Christ and makes it become the Word which, from now on, will govern all his life.
BEING TEMPTED BY SATAN (Mk 1,12-15)
In the desert the people of God learned that man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes out of God’s mouth. Jesus is in the desert because he too, must practically, really, in the daily history give his will to the Lord. Satan tempts Jesus for him to give to his mission a different meaning from the one the Father had established for Him. Whoever gives his mission a meaning different from the one wanted, defined, established by the Father, he simply carries out another mission, which is not the one thought by God. This is the specific of the temptation Christ was subjected to: making him useless as far as the salvation to be operated for all human kind. This temptation is so subtle that nobody is able to catch sight of and almost everybody miserably falls into it, even because Satan updates it by the hour, rendering it always new. Whoever changes finality to its mystery, destroys all the mystery, because he renders it unfit to produce the fruits posed by God in it. Finality and mystery must remain a single thing, must always by a single truth: the one that God established for them. In this unity of the mystery with its eternal truth salvation is fulfilled.
Inaugurated by H. E. Monsignor Sprovieri the catechesis offered by the Apostolic Movement
The joy for the inauguration of the Apostolic Movement’s catechesis was unrestrained, on the part of H. E. Monsignor Serafino Sprovieri, Metropolitan Archbishop of Benevento, in the Parish “S. Adiutore” of Cervinara (AV), 20 December, 2005. Bringing the Apostolic Movement to Cervinara was a need of the apostleship to which we Christians are called: we could not avoid listening to the voice of the Lord, in order to live in communion, set off for the destination of our hope.
We met the Inspirer of the Apostolic Movement, Mrs. Maria Marino, in Calabria, in the Santo Janni Church in Catanzaro, where, as a “celestial mediator”, she reminds the Gospel with her exhortation words, gives voice to the choir of Angels, touches our hearts, listens to our sufferings, revives our faith; the little rosary beads she distributes, are a continuity of prayer, a chain of solidarity.
Back to the Caudina Valley we announced other people this experience of ours and many proposed to get to know Mrs. Maria and the Apostolic Movement. We asked our parish priest, Father Nicola Taddeo, to guide us in our trip. And not only did he listen to our request, but he made himself promoter before other believers, desirous of meeting the Lord. Guided by him, we went to Santo Janni; returning, later, to Cervinara strengthened and confirmed in our faith, tempered in our spirit, needy and desirous of other meetings with the word of God. And therefore, on Fridays, Father Nicola holds the catechesis and spirituality meetings in the parish; they see gathered many young men and believers coming also from neighbouring towns: we get educate in the Word of God, we pray, sing, ask for the grace of the heart conversion, unity, righteous conscience, charity. This journey brings us to collaborate with more and more zeal in our parish.
Today, our exultancy has increased due to the presence of our Archbishop Monsignor Sprovieri and his witness: «Very dear sons, I am really pleased to come among you for this particular circumstance, because the Apostolic Movement, of which the very dear Father Gesualdo who was one of my students, hinted at, is a charisma given as a gift by the Lord to the Church in Catanzaro-Squillace when I was Auxiliary of that reality; Auxiliary to Monsignor Armando Fares, who was the Bishop; and therefore I had the joy of personally knowing Mrs. Maria and welcoming from her the first confidences; fancy that, making the pre-discernment which, after, I communicated to Monsignor Archbishop; that was, afterwards, occasion of the meeting between the Archbishop and Mrs. Maria, with whatever followed which would be a long story to be reminded».
He exhorted us to welcome the gifts of God with humbleness: “because they are gifts that come from Above and are always undeserved”; with gratitude: “because when God operates the fruits mature. And the fruits are abundant and of good quality”; with obedience: “because they have to be shared and communicated; in the measure in which they are given they are learned thoroughly and become more limpid, more robust; just as Saint Augustin said, who used to make the comparison: if material goods are shared they become pulverised, while if spiritual goods are shared they grow and mature.” Therefore he manifested us his joy: “I am glad and thank the Lord that a pollen of that hearth of fervour, that supper room of a Church that wants to correct itself in the name of the Lord, has arrived up to here and has given rise to your hearts to the careful and disposable echo…»
Welcome Apostolic Movement, we were waiting for you in our hearts. Virgin Mary, Redemption Mother, who triumph in heaven through your immense love, give us goodness and good will.
Antonio Stanzione e Mena Statuto
WE DO NOT KNOW YOU
We do not know you, oh Lord,
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