Essays and Questions on Catholic Theology

Essays and Questions on Catholic Theology

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The Church teaches that man, as the image of God, was created for holiness. Holiness is not then reserved for the few, but rather it is the destiny of all. The message is consequently one of hope, that change is possible, that growth in holiness is possible. We do not have to continue in a downward spiral of brokenness. We are called to be liberated from sin, and God has provided us with the power to change. This power can be found in the free gift of grace given by the Holy Spirit, through His Church and her Sacraments. In essence, this book is concerned with transformational theology. It is about how the grace of God, expressed through the Sacraments, is effective and able to transform us. From the beginning, it should be explained that there are two important philosophical principles at work within the sacramental economy of the Church. The first is, operatio sequitur esse, qaction follows upon beingq. Causes have effects, and in this case, the cause is Goda€™s transforming love, and the effect is the change within us brought about by this love. We are changed by the Cause, and we become like the Cause. Therefore, we act in a manner consistent with our new nature. But we must be open to change. This leads to the second principle, which is, qthat which is received, is received according to the mode of the receiverq. There is an obstacle that can prevent the grace of God from being effective in our lives. The obstacle is our will. As the image of God, we are given freedom, the ultimate freedom, the freedom to accept or reject God. The mode of the receiver must be open to the grace of God by faith. Our will must be surrendered to His will, or we will remain unchanged. The choice is ours.So, while subjective (good) intentions and circumstances do not affect the nature of the act as good or evil, such influences do affect whether ... Aquinas uses the example of the person who gives alms to the poor, yet his intentions are prideful.

Title:Essays and Questions on Catholic Theology
Author:Albert Ayers Forrester
Publisher:Xlibris Corporation - 2003-07-29


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