The Consecrated Life (Vita Consecrata) from Pope John Paul II, deeply rooted in the example and teaching of Christ the Lord, is a gift of God the Father to his Church through the Holy Spirit. The Consecrated Life (Vita Consecrata) from Pope John Paul II reveals that by the profession of the evangelical counsels the characteristic features of Jesus the chaste, poor and obedient one are made constantly "visible" in the midst of the world, and the eyes of the faithful are directed toward the mystery of the Kingdom of God already at work in history, even as it awaits its full realization in heaven.
The Consecrated Life (Vita Consecrata) from Pope John Paul II also reveals that in every age there have been men and women who, obedient to the Father's call and to the prompting of the Spirit, have chosen this special way of following Christ in order to devote themselves to him with an "undivided" heart (cf. 1 Cor. 7:34). Like the Apostles, they too have left everything behind in order to be with Christ and to put themselves, as he did, at the service of God and their brothers and sisters. In this way, through the many charisms of spiritual and apostolic life bestowed on them by the Holy Spirit, they have helped to make the mystery and mission of the Church shine forth, and in doing so have contributed to the renewal of society.
The Church can't exist without the consecrated life. Why not? Because it expresses the very nature of the Church. It makes present today the way of life that Jesus himself chose. When Jesus invites others to follow him in this way of life, he invites them into a special relationship with the Trinity. Marked by radical chastity, poverty, and obedience, the consecrated life is modeled on Jesus' own way of life. The Church can't exist without it because Jesus always calls some persons to make this gift of self.
Saint John Paul II explored these ideas and more in his ground-breaking document Consecrated Life (Vita Consecrata). The consecrated life is rooted in baptism and is a gift of the Holy Spirit to the Church. The Pope uses the icon of the Transfiguration to explain what consecration involves. Then he discusses how this life is a sign of communion in the Church and how it must lead to new ways of mission.
This 20th anniversary edition features the full text of the apostolic exhortation (dated March 25, 1996), and includes helpful commentary by Sr. Marianne Lorraine Trouvé, FSP. Her insights unpack the rich thought behind Saint John Paul II's words, including connections with themes from his theology of the body. Reflection questions and a prayer are included after each chapter.
Features & Benefits:
Released in time for the Year of Consecrated Life
Explains why the consecrated life is an essential gift to the Church
Shows how the consecrated life is a sign of the Trinity
Discusses how the consecrated life is related to marriage and a spousal gift of self
Explores new forms of mission
Highlights reasons for hope despite current problems
Serves as a springboard into prayer
Provides conversation starters for group use
About the Author:
Since 1976, Sr. Marianne Lorraine Trouvé, FSP, has been a member of the Daughters of St. Paul, an international congregation of women religious. She has an M.A. in theology from the University of Dayton. Since 1994 she has served on the editorial staff of Pauline Books & Media publishing house in Boston, Massachusetts.
Trim size: 5 x 7 1/4 inches