The Catholic Heroes Podcast is all about the call to holiness and that each of us can be saints, “Catholic Heroes.” I was beyond thrilled to read and study Pope Francis’s most recent Apostolic Exhortation, Gaudete et Exsultate, “Rejoice and Be Glad.”
We are going to take several episodes to take a deep dive in the exhortation. It’s an impressive study on what the call to holiness means for each of us today.
This episode focuses on the first chapter of the exhortation. You can find the exhortation here.
The featured Saint of this episode is St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. Key Quotes:
- “We bow down before the testimony of the life and death of Edith Stein, an outstanding daughter of Israel and at the same time a daughter of the Carmelite Order, Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, a personality who united within her rich life a dramatic synthesis of our century. It was the synthesis of a history full of deep wounds that are still hurting … and also the synthesis of the full truth about man. All this came together in a single heart that remained restless and unfulfilled until it finally found rest in God.” Pope John Paul II at St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross’s beatification in Cologne on 1 May 1987.
- “This was something totally new to me. In the synagogues and Protestant churches, I had visited people simply went to the services. Here, however, I saw someone coming straight from the busy marketplace into this empty church, as if she was going to have an intimate conversation.”
- “For by doing what God demands of us with total surrender of our innermost being, we cause the divine life to become our own inner life. Entering into ourselves, we find God in our own selves.”
- “There is a state of resting in God, an absolute break from all intellectual activity when one forms no plans, makes no decisions and for the first time really ceases to act, when one simply hands over the future to God’s will and ‘surrenders himself to fate’.”
- “One cannot desire freedom from the cross when one is specially chosen for the cross.”
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You can be holy. You can be a saint. Be a hero.