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Poverty By Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap
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In four chapters Father Cantalamessa deals with each of four different aspects of poverty in the light of the Gospel message of Christ: Negative material poverty, an unfortunate social condition... More > endured by far too many which is dehumanizing and must be combated; Positive material poverty, an evangelical ideal which liberates people from their inordinate attachments to the things of this world; Negative spiritual poverty, sometimes referred to as the poverty of the rich because it is characterized by the absence of spiritual wealth and of truly human values; and Positive spiritual poverty, otherwise known as the wealth of the poor, the finest blossom on the tree of biblical poverty. Following the example of St. Francis of Assisi the author shows how wealth, properly appreciated and used in the service of the poor, can actually be a source of blessing and peace.< Less
Virginity. A Positive Approach to Celibacy for the Sake of the Kingdom of Heaven By Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap
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We live in a cultural milieu in which it is no longer possible to have any confidence in external supports from society or the media to help one remain chaste — in the single state or in a life... More > consecrated to God by vows. Today much depends on the strong personal motivations of the individual coupled with the grace of God and a heavy dose of common sense for one to live this lifestyle. Still it is not only possible to do so, but to do so with joy. This little book on celibacy and virginity for the sake of the Kingdom seeks to help create the kind of motivation necessary, drawing heavily on texts from the New Testament which address many of the problems and objections frequently leveled against the very idea of living chastely with the restraint, discipline and self‑control required. Young people, for whom this book was mainly written, are shown how to live the charism of virginity and celibacy charismatically — that is “as a gift, in all humility, with joy and perfect freedom.”< Less
Obedience. The Authority of the Word By Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap
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There is a kind of obedience which concerns superiors and subjects, religious and lay people alike, and it is not the obedience of man to man but the obedience of man to God. This is the obedience... More > which sustains and makes acceptable all other kinds of obedience, to parents, to civil and religious authorities, to rules and to “every human institution”. It is precisely in order to make this obedience to law and visible authority flourishing again that we must start from obedience to God and to his Word. Obedience is not in fact renewed by law, but by grace; not by the letter, but by the Spirit. It is the Spirit – that is, Grace – which alone can give man both the command and the capacity to obey. “Law was given so that we may seek grace; grace was given so that we may observe the law”, says St. Augustine. It is therefore to the Spirit that we entrust ourselves, so that he may take us by the hand and guide us in our quest to rediscover the great secret of obedience.< Less

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