Evangelical Catholic Spirituality
The Ten Wellsprings of Grace
In his Prayer for the Great Jubilee of the year 2000, John Paull II prayed, “Father, grant that we may live this Jubilee Year docile to the voice of the Spirit, faithful to the way of Christ, diligent in listening to your Word and in approaching the wellsprings of grace.” We use this beautiful imagery of grace to name ten abundant sources of life, which nourish a spirituality that is fully Catholic and fully evangelical.
Interior Conversion occurs each time we turn from self will to God’s will. Initial conversion is when one surrenders to God for the first time. Catholic theologians often refer to this as making “the fundamental option.”
To follow Jesus in true discipleship is a costly endeavor, involving self denial in the deepest level of one’s being.
Devotion to the Scriptures
“It is especially necessary that listening to the word of God should become a life-giving encounter, in the ancient and ever valid tradition of lectio divina, which draws from the Biblical text the living word which questions, directs, and shapes our lives” (Novo Millennio Ineunte).
Obedience to Christ through the Church
The various evangelical movements of the Church’s history have a shared experience of testing and trial at the hands of Church authorities. An evangelical Catholic finds God’s presence and guidance in such trials.
Communion of the Saints
We are part of the Body of Christ, which extends back to Christ and the apostles. Together, in heaven and on Earth, we are working for the healing and salvation of the world.
A Sacramental Life
While all the Sacraments are there for us at key moments in our journey, the Eucharistic celebration is the source and summit of an evangelical Catholic life.
A Prayerful Life
God speaks to us in his Word; we speak to him in prayer. To be Christ’s disciple means to follow his example of seeking his Father in prayer. This dialogue of word and prayer is at the heart of a relationship with God.
A Spirit-Filled Life
The Holy Spirit is the great gift of the Father, made possible to us through the death and resurrection of Jesus. The presence of the Holy Spirit within us is so remarkable that Jesus said it was better that he go so that the Spirit could come.
An Ascetic Life
Asceticism is the practice of self-denial — the training by which our spirit gains mastery over our body and our union with God increases.
A Disciplined Life
To facilitate living the type of spirituality we have outlined, it is helpful to follow a guide, or commitment, for daily living — a practice that has a long and honored place in Catholic spirituality.