LIVE BY FAITH, SHARE FAITH
November 16, 2013
+Pope Benedict XVI has called us to
celebrate the YEAR of FAITH
from October 11, 2012 to Nov. 24, 2013.
+October 11, 2012 =50th anniversary of the
opening of the Second Vatican Council, and 20th
anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of
the Catholic Church
+November 24 =Solemnity of Christ the King
(end also of the liturgical year
REASON for the declaration:
.“Pope Benedict XVI sees a crisis of faith
in the world, a CRISIS ;…
+This CRISIS of FAITH =“AN ECLIPSE OF GOD”
+“a kind of amnesia, which, albeit not an
outright rejection of Christianity, is
nonetheless a denial of the treasure of our
faith, a DENIAL that could lead to the loss of
our deepest identity.
The Pope tells us in Porta Fidei that the YEAR of
FAITH is a summon to AUTHENTIC
CONVERSION to the LORD
We are being summoned
to LIVE OUT our baptism,
to live according to the new criterion
enunciated by St. Paul: FAITH WORKING
THROUGH LOVE” (Gal 5:6)..
I. FAITH THAT WE LIVE BY
+To live by something means
=to behave according to a particular set of
beliefs or principles;
+to live by also means to survive by doing or
using something in particular.
*“Faith that we live by” would mean
“living and behaving according to our faith,”
with the hope that by “doing or using” this
faith, we would be able to survive or persevere in
whatever situation we are in.
“… faith is the assurance of things hoped
for, the conviction of things not seen. Indeed,
by faith our ancestors received approval. (cf.
“Without faith, it is impossible to
please God” (cf. Heb 11:6)
But that faith must be REAL, SOLID and
PROFOUND FAITH and not and empty faith.
1. Three Structural Elements of FAITH
a. FAITH as KNOWING (Believing)(Doctrines)
=knowing the truth (illumination/assent)
(1) by evidence perceive by the senses and the
(2) by reasoning/logic by deduction or induction
(3) by accepting the testimony of someone
+WE KNOW THE TRUTH of our FAITH in this WAY.
=we know the truths of faith by
accepting the testimony not of human beings
alone, but the testimony of God Himself.
+By believing, we come to the KNOWLEDGE
of the TRUTH not because we are presented with
compelling evidence or because we are able to
arrive at the truth through reasoning, but because
WE ACCEPT GOD’S WORD FOR IT.
+There are truths of faith which we never
arrive at by OBSERVATION or REASONING alone.
*For example, we can NEVER KNOW by
observation or reasoning alone that Jesus Christ
is TRUE GOD as well as TRUE man
*But, we accept this central truth
because of the testimony of God in the Bible
(Jn 1:1, 14)
*It is reasonable to believe something on
the testimony of God because God is more
trustworthy that our senses and power of
God’s word is more reliable than any
human evidence or reasoning.
*Thus, faith can be described as
“EVIDENCE OF THINGS NOT SEEN” (Heb 11:1).
“…there is a certain “LEAP” needed to
*There must be a credible external
testimony by a credible witness, and an
internal illumination of grace.
*Then the MIND has to be “NUDGED”
(gentle push)by the WILL to accept what it
And the WILL itself has to be “NUDGED”
by the GRACE of GOD so that it may move the
MIND (intellect) to give its “YES” to the TRUTH
being proposed to it.”
“From all this, we can see that FAITH as
BELIEF (believing the truth) is a GRACE, a free
GIFT OF GOD.
“While faith is a GIFT from GOD,
the ACT of FAITH (believing) under grace is
a FREE HUMAN ACT.
+“How grateful we should be for the GIFT
of FAITH, for the GIFT of BELIEVING
responsibility is to strive to grow in the
knowledge of what God has revealed to us
as these have been taught to us by the Church,
which Christ constituted as our teacher in
matters of faith and morals.
b. FAITH as TRUSTING
+centurion (Mt.8:10):his TRUST and
CONFIDENCE that Jesus could heal his servant just by
+woman with a hemorrhage (Mt. 9:20-22).
+The Canaanite woman’s TRUST in Jesus’ power
to drive out the demon from her daughter (Mt.15:28).
+Peter was reproachfully called “O man of little
“We trust a person if we perceive these
TWO QUALITIES in HIM:
1. He CAN (capacity, ability; able and
2. He CARES (concerned; has the feeling of
+“God is all-powerful. He can do all things.
Nothing is impossible to Him.
+More importantly, God is LOVE and
CARES for us more than anybody cares.
c. FAITH as PERFORMING (doing, OBEDIENCE)
-Our Lord Jesus Christ made it clear that
not everyone who calls to Him, “Lord! Lord!”
will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only those
who do with will of His Father (Mt. 7:21)
-The one who is TRULY OBEDIENT is not
the one who says he will obey, but the one who
ACTUALLY OBEYS (cf. Mt 21:28-31).
-Our Faith must be translated into ACTION.
=FAITH without WORKS is dead (James 2:17).
II. FAITH THAT WE SHARE
In His Apostolic Letter Porta Fidei (Door of
Faith), Pope Benedict XVI emphasizes that
“believing is not a private matter,… faith has a
The CBCP Pastoral Exhortation on the Era
of New Evangelization also shares the same
thought by encouraging us: LIVE CHRIST, SHARE
CHRIST – highlighting the connection between
faith and evangelization.
Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity, no. 2,
“the Christian vocation is by its very nature
a VOCATION to the APOSTOLATE”, and that it is
incumbent upon every believer to be a
BRINGER of the GOOD NEWS to others.
“It is unthinkable that a person should
believe the Word and submit himself to the
kingdom without becoming a person who bears
witness to it and proclaims it in his turn” (E.N,
24, Paul VI).
F= FOCUS/FIX YOUR EYES ON CHRIST
Maintain your focus on the Lord who is the
very content of your faith.
-Remember the story in the Bible about
Peter walking out onto the water when Jesus
called to him? He kept walking above the water
as long as he stayed focused on Jesus. But once
he focused on the storm, he sank.
-To evangelize, Pope Francis said, is to
focus "on the essential, that is, on Jesus
Christ," on his love and on loving others as he
did. This also entails intensifying your prayer life.
A=ACTIVATE CHRISTIAN VIRTUES
-Mobilize the spiritual strength which you have
receive in baptism. Saying you're a Christian is one thing,
but living it in tangible ways every day is something else.
The Word says, "They'll know them by their fruit."
+zealous and careful nature in one’s actions
+steadfastness in belief;
+the capacity of not giving up;
+monitoring one’s own activities to guard
+upholding one’s conviction at all times,
especially when no one else is watching
+forbearance and endurance through
+resolving conflicts and injustice
+creating a sense of peaceful stability
and community rather than hostility and
It is MORE THAN a MINDSET.
*It is LOVE in ACTION.
+COMPASSION is the
to the needs,
the pains, and
the sufferings of others.
+Compassion flows from a profound sense of the
inter-connectedness of all people as children of God.
Conditions of Conversion
(Mga gikinahanglan elemento o
requirements aron masinati ang kabag-ohan
a. Humble Admission of sin and guilt
=Ps 51:14: “A humble contrite heart O God you will
=humility is a prerequisite to true knowledge of
self; it is the capacity to see ourselves as we really are
b. Readiness to the Efforts of Moral Renewal
(1)Mobilization of spiritual energies
(2).Work for it
I=INSPIRE OTHERS BY BEING ON FIRE (cf. Faith and Evangelization [the
Passion to Evangelize] by Bsp. Bacani, pp. 95ff)
(“You cannot inspire if you are not on fire” Cardinal Arinze
[world congress for families]
+Evangelization must never deteriorate into being merely a
routine or obligation, but must always be a WORK of LOVE, love for
God and for people.
+Evangelizers must not look like defeated, exhausted people
but must remain peaceable and joyful even in the worst of
+“The New Evangelization needs evangelizers who are on fire
because they have a passion for God and His will, and for people and
their salvation. This passion for evangelizing can only come from the
Holy Spirit who was given to the first disciples in the form of fire. And
it is received in prayer from that same Holy Spirit when we beg Him
insistently, ‘Come, Holy Spirit, come! Let your fire fall!’”
T=TREAT PEOPLE WITH RESPECT and DIGNITY
Treat people with respect and dignity, no
matter the circumstances. Whenever you have
the opportunity, show how you don't change
how you treat people, no matter what.
Jesus treated people right, even when they
mistreated Him. People around you will wonder
how you're able to show this kind of respect for
H=HONOR GOD’S WORK IN OTHERS (by sharing it)
(cf. Leadership Thought, pp. 145ff)
TWO Possible REASONS why a person/leader
would not share (honor) God’s work to others:
1. When a person/leader is insecure.
-He finds it threatening if his members
(other people) will find out that his programs are
mere borrowed ideas from others.
2. When a leader has a problem with
-He wants his members/other people to
believe more in him. Only a person who has
problem with his identity would keep the identity
of his source unknown to his people.
+This is what the Pharisees/high priests
displayed at the early years of the Church.
+They did not only prevent God’s work
form prospering; they even threatened those
who were propagating it. (Acts 5:17-20 )
If we truly are building God’s Kingdom,
then we must exalt the work of God! We must
also exalt God’s work in others – not suppress it
or make it appear it’s ours. It’s not ours; it’s
God’s. (Ephesians 2:10=For we are what he has
made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works,
which God prepared beforehand to be our way
Our attitude should be like that of St. Paul.
When he was in prison and heard that some
people, whom they didn’t know and for
whatever purpose, were preaching the Lord’s
name, he exhorted his followers:
“What does it matter? Just this, that Christ
is proclaimed in every way, whether out of false
motives or true; and in that I rejoice. Yes, and I
will continue to rejoice.” (Philippians 1:18)
Faith is truly a gift from God. And as a gift, we
need to nourish it not only by living by it, but also
by sharing it to others, through
1. Fixing/Focusing our eyes on Christ
2. Activating our Christian virtues
3. Inspiring others by being on fire, by
4. Treating others with respect and dignity
5. Honoring God’s work in Others