What is your life but a wisp of smoke, which shews for a moment and then must vanish into nothing? You ought to be saying, We will do this or that if it is the Lord’s will, and if life is granted us.
You recall that one and the same Word of God extends throughout Scripture, that it is one and the same Utterance that resounds in the mouths of all the sacred writers, since he who was in the beginning God with God has no need of separate syllables; for he is not subject to time.
For this reason, the Church has always venerated the Scriptures as she venerates the Lord’s Body. She never ceases to present to the faithful the bread of life, taken from the one table of God’s Word and Christ’s Body.
In Conversation with God:
Christ… condemns a narrow-minded and exclusive attitude towards apostolate. He teaches us that apostolic work done in his name can take many different forms.
The apostolate, through which the laity build up the Church, sanctify the world and persuade it to live in Christ, can take on many forms. The one thing necessary is to be with Christ, with his Church – to transmit his teaching and to love him with deeds. Our Christian spirit should lead us to be open to the most varied forms of apostolate, to make an effort to understand them all – no matter how different they may be from our own way of thinking or acting – and to rejoice in their variety… Rejoice when you see others working in a good apostolate. And ask God to grant them abundant grace and correspondence to that grace.
Then, you, on your way. Convince yourself that, for you – yours is the only way…
… there is a unity that must be preserved in faith and in moral matters, in the sacraments, in obedience to the Hierarchy, in the common means of attaining holiness and in the great norms of discipline. But this precious unity is to be preserved with the well-known principle of Saint Augustine: ‘in necessariis unitas, in dubiis libertas, in omnibus caritas’ – unity in all that is necessary, freedom in all that is subject to opinion, and charity in everything… the unity that is needed is never the kind of uniformity that leads to an impoverishment of souls and of their apostolates. In the garden of the Church there has always been, and there will always be, a remarkable variety of beautiful flowers, each with its own aroma, its own size, shape and colour…
The wonder of Pentecost is the sanctification of every unique path: no one way has a monopoly, no one way is to be encouraged to the exclusion or detriment of others.
Pentecost is an incalculable variety of tongues, of methods, of ways of meeting God, and not a forced uniformity…
… the Church did not try to impose a straitjacket of uniformity on all its converts. In the same way, the apostolate was carried out through a great variety of channels – some fulfilled the important task of defending Christianity with their writings, others preached in public in the market-places, while the majority of the new Christians carried out a personal work of apostolate in their families and among their neighbours, friends and fellow-workers. What they had in common was their mutual charity, their faithfulness to the doctrine they had received, the sacraments, and their obedience to their legitimate shepherds…
Unity and variety. You all have to be different from one another, as the saints in heaven are different, each having his own personal and very special characteristics. But also you have to be as identical as the saints, who would not be saints if each of them had not identified himself with Christ.
… and everything i once held dear, i count it all as loss, lead me to the cross…