On October 11, 2012 our Holy Father, Benedict XVI opened the Year of Faith for the Church. In his homily he addressed the growing void of God in our society and proposed a year to renew faith and evangelize in new ways. Here is an excerpt of his wisdom:
Jesus is the centre of the Christian faith. The Christian believes in God whose face was revealed by Jesus Christ. He is the fulfilment of the Scriptures and their definitive interpreter. Jesus Christ is not only the object of the faith but, as it says in the Letter to the Hebrews, he is “the pioneer and the perfecter of our faith” (12:2).
Today’s Gospel tells us that Jesus Christ, consecrated by the Father in the Holy Spirit, is the true and perennial subject of evangelization. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach the good news to the poor” (Lk 4:18). This mission of Christ, this movement of his continues in space and time, over centuries and continents. It is a movement which starts with the Father and, in the power of the Spirit, goes forth to bring the good news to the poor, in both a material and a spiritual sense. The Church is the first and necessary instrument of this work of Christ because it is united to him as a body to its head. “As the Father has sent me, even so I send you” (Jn 20:21), says the Risen One to his disciples, and breathing upon them, adds, “Receive the Holy Spirit” (v.22). Through Christ, God is the principal subject of evangelization in the world; but Christ himself wished to pass on his own mission to the Church; he did so, and continues to do so, until the end of time pouring out his Spirit upon the disciples, the same Spirit who came upon him and remained in him during all his earthly life, giving him the strength “to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed” and “to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord” (Lk 4:18-19).
He goes on to describe the ‘desertification’, that is, the void of God in all of society and how we are crying out to know Him in many ways. “And in the desert people of faith are needed who, with their own lives, point out the way to the Promised Land and keep hope alive. Living faith opens the heart to the grace of God which frees us from pessimism. Today, more than ever, evangelizing means witnessing to the new life, transformed by God, and thus showing the path.” (emphasis mine)
In a word, the faithful are being called to witness to Christ in our lives. It is by this witness that we “preach the gospel to the poor”. And each one of us as a member of the Mystical Body of Christ, makes up a critical part of the whole. Our particular stories speak Christ in many diverse ways and your words may be the very ones that lead someone to the path of Christ! We can never underestimate what God can do with even the tiniest ‘Yes’
I would like to use this blog and take the Holy Father’s call to action very literally. I am always inspired by my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ and would love to hear your stories and testimonies. Contact me HERE if you would like to share your witness of Christ in your life and have it published on this blog. No matter where you are in your faith walk you have something valuable to offer. By speaking up and speaking out, God can use you for the good of all His holy church.
It can be short, sweet, and to the point, detailing a single experience, or a more general faith testimony of your life (1500 words or less). If you aren’t sure how to do it ask the Holy Spirit to use you as His instrument and just speak from the heart.
I’ll publish testimonies as I get them for the entire year of faith so if you know someone with a faith story to tell send them here!
Can’t wait to hear from you and I’ll get working on mine too!