Sunday, April 25, 2010

Life of Grace is Heaven already Begun


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From Leo XIII, Divinun illud munus (May 9, 1897):

It is well to recall the explanation given by the Doctors of the Church of the words of Holy Scripture. 

They say that God is present and exists in all things "by His power in so far as all things are subject to His power; by His presence, inasmuch as all things are naked and open to His eyes; by His essence, inasmuch as He is present to all as the cause of their being" (St. Thomas, ST I.8.3). 

But God is in man, not only as in inanimate things, but because He is more fully known and loved by him, since even by nature we spontaneously love, desire, and seek after the good. 

Moreover, God by grace resides in the just soul as in a temple, in a most intimate and peculiar manner. From this proceeds that union of affection by which the soul adheres most closely to God, more so than the friend is united to his most loving and beloved friend, and enjoys God in all fullness and sweetness.  Now this wonderful union, which is properly called "indwelling," differ[s] only in degree or state from that with which God beatifies the saints in heaven....

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