The Year of Faith and the Resurrection

In this Year of Faith, we give you several excerpts from Church documents to accompany you in this month when we celebrate the Feast of Easter.

WE BELIEVE (Catechism of the Catholic Church)

166. Faith is a personal act – the free response of the human person to the initiative of God who reveals himself. But faith is not an isolated act. No one can believe alone, just as no one can live alone. You have not given yourself faith as you have not given yourself life. The believer has received faith from others and should hand it on to others. Our love for Jesus and for our neighbor impels us to speak to others about our faith. Each believer is thus a link in the great chain of believers. I cannot believe without being carried by the faith of others, and by my faith I help support others in the faith.

991. (Catechism of the Catholic Church)

Belief in the resurrection of the dead has been an essential element of the Christian faith from its beginnings. “The confidence of Christians is the resurrection of the dead; believing this we live.” (Tertullian, De res, 1, 1: PL 2, 841.) How can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ has not been raised; if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain…. But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep. (1 Cor 15:12-14.)

Respond to the appeals of the Spirit : Gaudium et Spes

11. The People of God believes that it is led by the Lord’s Spirit, Who fills the earth. Motivated by this faith, it labors to decipher authentic signs of God’s presence and purpose in the happenings, needs and desires in which this People has a part along with other men of our age. For faith throws a new light on everything, manifests God’s design for man’s total vocation, and thus directs the mind to solutions which are fully human.

The Importance of Christology – the Decisiveness of the Resurrection

(Benedict XVI, General Audience, Wednesday 5 November 2008)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

“If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain… and you are still in your sins” (1 Cor 15: 14-17). With these strong words from the First Letter to the Corinthians,St Paulmakes clear the decisive importance he attributes to the Resurrection of Jesus. In this event, in fact, lies the solution to the problem posed by the drama of the Cross. The Cross alone could not explain the Christian faith, indeed it would remain a tragedy, an indication of the absurdity of being. The Paschal Mystery consists in the fact that the Crucified man “was raised on the third day, in accordance with the Scriptures” (1 Cor 15: 4).