GeE 16: Four Practical Examples Of Everyday Holiness

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16. This holiness to which the Lord calls you will grow through small gestures. Here is an example: a woman goes shopping, she meets a neighbor and they begin to speak, and the gossip starts. But she says in her heart: “No, I will not speak badly of anyone”. This is a step forward in holiness. Later, at home, one of her children wants to talk to her about his hopes and dreams, and even though she is tired, she sits down and listens with patience and love. That is another sacrifice that brings holiness. Later she experiences some anxiety, but recalling the love of the Virgin Mary, she takes her rosary and prays with faith. Yet another path of holiness. Later still, she goes out onto the street, encounters a poor person and stops to say a kind word to him. One more step.

Practical examples one would likely hear from any Jesuit. The key for those of us who do not have these contacts is to look for opportunities to be holy in ordinary life. What is it that the believer notices around her or him? After attuning to one’s first, best impulse, than act upon it. Then it comes to a routine practice–it’s less a matter of absorbing information, advice, or catechisms in order to be holy, but to practice virtue as if it were an art.

You can check the full document Gaudete et Exsultate on the Vatican website.


About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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2 Responses to GeE 16: Four Practical Examples Of Everyday Holiness

  1. John Donaghy says:

    There has been some feedback on this paragraph in terms of the way it presents women. I’m not sure that is totally warranted.
    I see the paragraph as very Latin American. There is a real problem here, at least where I am in Honduras, with gossip. There is also the problem of not always being attentive to children. The Rosary is also a very Latin American touch, with the great devotion to Mary in our part of the world. And the final note is the overwhelming presence of the poor in our world.
    In regard to this last point, I find people here in Honduras are almost always willing to give a small donation to someone in need. I have all my North-American questions about whether this is a scam, but here generosity abounds.
    Real holiness in the neighborhood.

  2. Todd says:

    It might also be that Pope Francis is attuned to the problems of online interaction. There, or rather here, gossip is a big problem. Not only children are dismissed when individuals get entranced by online exchanges.

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