St. Irenaeus may seem an ancient bishop and martyr, except for his wonderful phrase that is ever new: God’s glory is man fully alive. Part of a larger instruction on dealing with the heresies of the late 2nd century, this maxim goes right to the heart of living our faith amidst life’s daily successes and struggles.
Irenaeus’ quote was a favorite of Pope John Paul II. He used it at two World Youth Days as an invitation to young people to develop their God-given talents fully and to place them at the service of the gospel and those in need. John Paul urged a generous heart and a faith-filled spirit, especially in the face of very real 20th century heresies.
For me, when do I find myself “fully alive”? How does my heart expand as I use my gifts and talents as Jesus invites in the gospel? What practical difference can I make in living the Lord’s gospel…just this weekend?
–The Jesuit Prayer Team