What is the Holiness of a Christian and what does it consist of?

In the following article to show, you will find and know everything related to what is the Holiness of a Christian, what it consists of, where it is recognized, how it is lived, what meaning does holiness have as a vocation in Christ and more. So if you are interested in discovering all of the above, we invite you to see it right here, you will not regret it.

Definition of Holiness

What is Holiness? , is something that many believe they already know but they really do not know its meaning since many religious relate it to a saint, which this adjective (saint) can refer to the kind individual who is not at fault. But in the religious sphere, a saint is a subject who developed a special bond with a divine being, that is, an Almighty God who stands out for his ethics and moral values. Although in colloquial language, this is considered the solidarity, mercy, kindness or clemency of a person. Some examples to better understand the latter are:

“Pedro’s wife returned to make presence of her holiness by accompanying her husband to the martial arts festival and then to the heavy metal concert, which Pedro has so eagerly awaited.”

“The young Mary began to show her holiness as a child, when she gave away her old toys to the poor children of the neighborhood, who could not afford such toys . “

The aspects that are considered most relevant according to the religious appear written in the “Bible” itself in which it is indicated how to live in holiness, that is, it is determined that whoever wishes to do so must strictly follow and stipulate the following indications:

  • You must be a practitioner of fasting.
  • You have to study and at the same time obey each and every one of the aspects that are established as principles in the aforementioned “Bible”.
  • Such a person needs to know how to forgive.
  • It is essential to be aware and of the power that prayer has.
  • In the same way, it is established that in order to live in holiness it is necessary to flee from all kinds of temptations and always be on God’s good path.
  • Justice must be done.
  • You will not be able to carry out the satisfaction of what are the desires of any type of meat.

What is Holiness?

For religion, the word sainthood is a quality possessed only by those people who have been officially declared saints, while in Catholicism, individuals become saints through a process called canonization, where the Pope is in charge to carry out said canonization only after he has confirmed the sanctity of the person through an analysis regarding his Christian qualities and to determine if, for reasons of faith, he suffered martyrdom, for those who do not know what it is, the word martyrdom refers to the sufferings, torments or death that a person suffers in his life because of his religion or ideals. It is worth mentioning that the saints must have performed two or more miracles during their life.

As mentioned above, being saints means resembling Jesus Christ in every way, that is, from the smallest to the largest: thoughts, feelings, words and actions. One of the most characteristic features of holiness is charity, that is, loving God above all things and loving one’s neighbor as oneself. It should be noted that, when the word holiness is written with an initial capital letter (Holiness), then this means that it is a treatment of honor that is granted only to the Pope of the church, an example of this could be the following:

“His Holiness will visit Bolivia next week.”

“At Mass this morning, His Holiness managed to touch everyone’s hearts with a special prayer for the deceased . “

Current meaning of Holiness

Gaudete et exsultate is the third apostolic exhortation of nothing more and nothing less than Pope Francis, in 2018, which is subtitled “On the call to holiness in today’s world”. In this text we can highlight four aspects important which are named: holiness and ordinary life, the Church as a living framework of holiness, holiness as a vocation-mission in Christ and holiness as something essentially open. These aspects are present from the beginning in the Gospel, which the first Christians lived in an exemplary way, but unfortunately a large part of them were forgotten until the 20th century. The meaning of each of these aspects will be explained in detail below.

Holiness in ordinary life

Holiness in ordinary life or everyday life. At this point the Pope deals with “common holiness”, that is, the middle class of holiness, but do not misunderstand it since none of these expressions is equivalent to a mediocre holiness or a second-class holiness, since that holiness does not exist.

They are those “modest souls”, in the expression of Joseph Malègue, quoted by the Pope himself. It is about the sanctity of ordinary life, at work, in friendship, in the family and in social relationships.

“Holiness is the fruit of our Baptism. It is the main work of the Holy Spirit in us, who counts on our collaboration, normally based on small gestures. Other times it presents greater challenges, or, at least, a different way of living what we already do» (cf. GE 16f).

This is how the ordinary becomes extraordinary.

Holiness in the Church

Holiness is given and lived in the Church, the family of God, that is, holiness is not individualistic:

“No one is saved alone” (GE 6).

Indeed, many ask themselves the question of what Holiness is according to the Bible or according to the church, which is why the Second Vatican Council itself explains the universal call to holiness. A holiness that is not tarnished by our shortcomings or sins; because, as Benedict XVI liked to underline, the Church is, above all, God’s, it is his work. We must make an effort not to disfigure her face.

“In this holy people on the march towards Heaven, we live together, we support each other, we have an experience of fraternity, we advance in a caravan of solidarity, a holy pilgrimage” (cf. Evangelii Gaudium , 87).

It is a living tradition which encompasses all the countless “witnesses” who have gone before us and all the Christians to come.

Holiness as a vocation-mission in Christ

Holiness is vocation-mission in Christ. This “little holiness”, as Pope Francis has pointed out, is part of the great journey and the great mission of the saints, while at the same time it is a personal and personal journey. Each saint is a mission in Christ.

“Basically, holiness is living in union with him the mysteries of his life” (GE 19s).

As the Catechism of the Catholic Church explains

“Relive with him his hidden life, his treatment of others, his closeness to the most fragile, and other manifestations of his dedication for all” (cf. nos. 515 ss).

open holiness

Holiness opens us to God and to others, along paths that in many cases begin far from Jesus Christ or with people who are not incorporated into the Catholic Church. In all parts of the world, God arouses signs of his presence, which can even help Christians. Holiness does not take away strength, life or joy, quite the contrary. It makes us “more alive, more human, happier”. And so Francis proposes to each of us:

“Don’t be afraid to aim higher, to let yourself be loved and freed by God. Do not be afraid to let yourself be guided by the Holy Spirit. Holiness does not make you less human, because it is the meeting of your weakness with the strength of grace».

«In life there is only one sadness, that of not being saints»  (GE 34).

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