The very concrete advice of Benedict XVI to be a little holier every day

Through his homilies, his audiences, his speeches, Pope Benedict XVI has distilled very concrete tips to apply in his daily life to get closer to Christ.

Far from the image of the theologian disconnected from the realities of life, Benedict XVI had a very clear perception of the difficulties encountered daily in encountering Christ. In homily of theAdvent in 2009, he observed: “We all experience, in our daily lives, having little time for the Lord and little time for ourselves. You end up being absorbed by what you have to “do”. Who has not experienced periods when the amount of things to do overwhelms us and when we no longer have the time or the availability of mind for the essentials?

What is the essential? For Benedict XVI, it is the encounter with Christ. “At the beginning of being a Christian, there is no ethical decision or some great idea, but there is the encounter with an event, with a Person who gives life a new perspective and therefore a decisive orientation” , he wrote in his first encyclical Deus caritas is. Faith is above all a relationship, an encounter with God. The new perspective is to become holy. And it is by frequenting Christ regularly, by allowing oneself to be “contaminated” by his love that one advances on the path to holiness: “As soon as you become the friend of God, everything begins to change in your life. When you get to know him better, you find that you want your life to reflect some of his infinite goodness” (Speech at the University of Twickenham, UK, September 17, 2010).

And to become a friend of God, Benedict XVI recommends some completely accessible and easy to implement reflexes.

1Twice a day, have brief contact with God


Shutterstock | fizkes

Any relationship dies if it is not nurtured. This is true in couple, in family, in friendship, but also with the Lord. This is why Benedict XVI said “One should not begin or end a day without having at least a brief contact with God”. A simple “contact”! Not necessarily a prayer, then, but a thought, an impulse from the heart, a word of praise or gratitude, at the beginning and at the end of the day.

2Every morning, thank the Lord for the gift of faith

During his last general audience on February 27, 2013, Benedict XVI shared a beautiful and short prayer and encouraged to recite it daily in the morning, in order to express his love to the Lord and to thank him for the gift of faith. Here is the prayer in question: “I adore you my God and I love you with all my heart. I thank you for having created me, made me a Christian”. For Benedict XVI, the gift of faith is “the most precious good, which no one can take away from us! »

3Every day, find an occasion to rejoice

Couple hug forgiveness

fizzy | Shutterstock

“The aspiration to joy is imprinted in the heart of man”, said Benedict XVI on the occasion of the 27th World Youth Day in 2012. Not immediate and fleeting satisfactions, but “the deep, perfect and lasting joy that can give ‘taste’ to existence”. To taste it, we still have to identify the simple joys that the Lord offers us. Benedict XVI thus gives some occasions to rejoice: the joy of living, the joy in the face of the beauty of nature, the joy of a job well done, the joy of service, the joy of sincere and pure love. “And if we pay attention, there are many other reasons to rejoice: the good times of family life, the friendship shared, the discovery of one’s personal abilities and one’s own successes, the compliments received from others, the ability to express oneself and to feel understood, the feeling of being useful to others”.

4Every Sunday, meet Christ in the Eucharist


© Pascal Deloche / GODONG

“The bread that I will give is my flesh, given so that the world may have life” (Jn 6, 51). A promise of Christ himself, every Eucharistic celebration sacramentally actualizes the gift that Jesus made of his life. That is why, for Benedict XVI, “it is essential never to let a Sunday pass without an encounter with the Risen Christ in the Eucharist; this is not an extra weight, but a light for the whole week”.

5Every day, note a sign from God


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At the forefront, Benedict XVI already evoked in 2009 the idea of ​​” bullet journal“. A diary in which we would note the signs that God sends us. To become aware and record how attentive God is to each of his creatures and how much he loves us. “Each event of the day is a sign that God addresses to us, a sign of the attention he has for each one of us. How often does God make us perceive a sign of his love! Keeping, in a way, an “inner diary” of this love would be a beautiful and salutary duty for our life! », invited-he.

6Contemplating works of art


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Musician and music lover, Benedict XVI experienced the beauty that leads to God. He confides, during a general audience in August 2011how much a Bach concert in Munich had touched him: “At the end of the last piece, one of the Cantata, I felt, not in a reasoned way, but in the depths of my heart, that what I had heard had transmitted to me the truth, the truth of the supreme composer, and impelled me to give thanks to God”. The via pulchritudinisthe “path of beauty”, is one of the paths that can lead to God and help us to encounter him.

A piece of sacred music through which “our soul speaks more easily to God”.

“There are artistic expressions which are true paths towards God, the Supreme Beauty, and which even help to grow in our relationship with Him, in prayer”, affirms Benedict XVI. “These are the works which are born of faith and which express faith”. It is up to us to raise our eyes to the cathedrals which “draw our gaze and our spirit upwards”, or to listen to a piece of sacred music through which “our soul speaks more easily to God”.

7Picking up the fun sides of life

Mom and daughter laughing

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In a interview quite personal in view of preparing for his apostolic journey to Bavaria in September 2006, Benedict XVI underlined the importance of not taking oneself too seriously and of knowing how to savor the little joys of life: “I am not the kind of man who always has a funny story to tell. But I think it’s very important to know how to pick up the fun sides of life and its joyful dimension and not take everything tragically”. And to conclude: “A writer said that angels could fly because they don’t take themselves too seriously. And we, we could perhaps fly a little more, if we didn’t always put on great airs”.

8Invoke more saints

Therese of Lisieux

Corinne Simon I Ciric

Benedict XVI had great devotion and great trust in the saints, “those men and women who by their faith, by their charity, by their lives have been beacons for so many generations, and who are also for us”, ensured-he. From the inaugural mass of his pontificate, on April 24, 2005, he confided in the great cohort of saints: “The troop of saints of God protects me, supports me and carries me”. He invites all the baptized to do the same, and more precisely to “follow their example, have recourse to their intercession, enter into communion with them”. For, he quotes, “community with the saints unites us to Christ from whom flow, as from their source and from their head, all the graces and the life of the People of God themselves” (cf. Lumen gentium).

9Take time of silence


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Despite the frenzy of life, Benedict XVI invites us to take regular times of silence, a royal road to encounter God, a space to let “joy, concerns, suffering” speak, an essential time “to discern what is important from what is useless or incidental”. “There is no reason to be surprised that, in the different religious traditions, solitude and silence are privileged spaces to help people not only to find themselves but also to find the Truth that gives meaning. to all things,” he observed in his message for the 46th World Communications Day in May 2012. “If God also speaks to man in silence, in the same way man discovers in silence the possibility of speaking with God and about God. »

Pope Benedict XVI weekly audience in the Paul
Kardynał Joseph Ratzinger
Zmarł papież Benedykt XVI

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The very concrete advice of Benedict XVI to be a little holier every day

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