Chaplain’s Corner : December

What is Faith?

CCC 150  Faith is first of all a personal adherence of man to God. At the same time, and inseparably, it is a free assent to the whole truth that God has revealed.

Faith is a gift from God. It’s a human act enabled by grace. It’s more than a belief, it’s an adherence of man to God. Faith requires perseverance, a continual adhering to the person of Christ.

Our prime example of the obedience of faith is St. Mary. Good chose to reveal his will to Mary through the messenger, the angel Gabriel. Mary’s first response is to welcome the messenger and the message. She then chooses to believe that what God has said may come to pass, “with God all will be possible.” Belief is part of faith, but it’s not all. The days after the encounter with Gabriel would have been filled with trials: “did I have a really strange dream, or am I actually with child?” And then, as morning sickness began and later she began to show the signs of pregnancy, there could have been room for more doubt: “what will Joseph think? Will he reject me?”

Faith is that continual adherence to God and his revealed truth regardless of circumstance, regardless of feelings. And this is the obedience of faith. Mary receives, which includes the willingness to act: “Behold I am the handmaid of the Lord.” In welcoming the word, Mary give God’s message a chance. She not only believes, she daily lives with full assent to God’s will. The ultimate goal of faith? The glory of God.

Fr. Tim Nolt, YCP Austin Chaplain

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