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 | By Sister Alicia Torres, F.E.

Christian, Remember Your Dignity

May 4, 2023 | Over 1,500 years ago, Pope St. Leo the Great uttered a statement that has reverberated down the ages to our very day: Christian, remember your dignity.

Made in God’s image and likeness, we are unlike any other creature: we share in God’s attributes by way of reason, free will, and the capacity to love as God loves. How remarkable!

Yet, we face attacks to our Christian dignity every day. These often come from without and are ever more easy to recognize: cultural pressures, entertainment that chips away at morality, and laws that place human desires above God’s plan for his beautiful world, just to name a few.

Attacks upon our dignity also come from within. St. Paul calls these “works of the flesh” and he lists them clearly for us in Galatians 5:19–21: “Now the works of the flesh are obvious: immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness…”.

The good news is, we are not alone to confront sin in our lives. The Spirit of the Lord literally dwells in us when we are in the state of grace. Even when we are outside the state of grace, actual grace is always available to us to draw us back into a relationship with God.

Paul helps us understand this as he goes on to list the fruits—or signs of the presence—of the Spirit in our lives in Galatians 5:22–23: “... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.”

We belong to Jesus. At every Mass, our encounter with him is deepened as we pray the Mass and receive Jesus in Holy Communion. We become more aware of our Christian dignity—that in Christ, we are adopted children of the Father who will never let us down.

Let’s allow Jesus to be our guide and let’s allow the Holy Spirit to transform us ever more into the holy men and women God has created us to be. Then, my dear friends, how fruitful will our missionary efforts be as we journey alongside Jesus for the life of the world!

Christian, remember your dignity!

This reflection first appeared in the Heart of the Revival newsletter. The Heart of the Revival email newsletter helps you enkindle, rekindle, and deepen a living relationship with Jesus in the Eucharist. It’s the simplest way to stay connected to what the National Eucharistic Revival is all about: responding to Our Lord’s personal, loving two-fold invitation: to remain with him in the Eucharist at Mass and in prayer and to go out with him on mission for the life of the world!

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