Charis' Message Of Preparation For Pentecost 2020 Part II

Author: Father Raniero Cantalamessa

Picture: Pexels

Charis' Message Of Preparation For Pentecost 2020 Part II

The greatest miracles of the Holy Spirit are obtained in response to our praise, says Fr Raniero Cantalamessa in part two of his Pentecost preparation message for Charis.

Saint Paul recommended to the Thessalonians: In all things give thanks; (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Praise and thanksgiving, doxology and the thanksgiving are man’s first two duties towards God.

The fundamental sin of humanity, which, according to the Apostle, is the source of every other sin, is the rejection of these two attitudes: As a result, they (men) have no excuse; “for although they knew God they did not accord him glory (doxazein) as God or give him thanks (eucharistein).” (Romans 1:21)

Consequently, the exact opposite of sin is not virtue, but praise! The praise of God, made in the present dramatic circumstances, is faith pushed to its highest degree.

Jesus, after having calmed the storm, did not reproach His apostles for not having woken Him earlier; He reproached them for not having had enough faith.

An Opportunity For Catholic Charismatic Renewal

This is an opportunity for us in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal to return to the purest origins of the stream of grace: from its birth, it appeared before the rest of Christendom as the people of praise, the people of hallelujah.

We were not alone. Our Pentecostal brothers had had the same experience. One of the most widely read books in the Renewal, after “The Cross and the Switchblade” by David Wilkerson, was Merlin Carothers’ book, “Prison to Praise.”

The author not only recommended the importance of praise, but demonstrated - with Scripture and experience in hand – its miraculous power.

Miracles Of Praise

The greatest miracles of the Holy Spirit are not obtained in response to our supplications, but in response to our praise.

In the same way, about the three young Hebrews thrown into the burning furnace, we read that with one voice they began to sing, glorifying and blessing God by singing a hymn with which the prayer of Lauds begins every Sunday and every feast day: “Blessed are you, Lord, God of our fathers.” (Daniel 3:51)

The greatest miracle of praise is the one that happens to the one who practices it, especially in trial, because it shows that grace has been stronger than nature.

The miracle of Paul and Silas in the prison - and of the three young men in the furnace – is repeated in multiple circumstances and in endless ways: release from disease, from drug addiction, from a wrongful conviction, from the burden of one’s own past... “Try to believe”, was the advice Carothers gave to its readers

Uniting In Praise With The Whole Church

So let us drown the virus in a sea of praise, or at least try to do so. Let us unite ourselves to the whole Church which, in the Gloria of the Mass, proclaims: We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks for your immense glory. There is no supplication in this prayer-only praise!

While waiting for Pentecost, let us begin again to sing with the same enthusiasm as at that time the songs that brought tears to so many of us at our first encounter with the current of grace of the Charismatic Renewal: “Alabaré, Alabaré”; “Come and Worship, Royal Priesthood”; and so many others.

There is one song that I would like to mention in particular because of its topicality. It was composed in 1992 by Don Moen. Its refrain, says this:

Oh, God will make a way

Where there seems to be no way

He works in ways we cannot see

He will make a way for me.

Not just for me, or for us, but for all humankind.

  • This is part two of Fr Raniero's message. Part one can be read here

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