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A change had come.  The doors to their hiding place were unlocked and the fearful ones now walked the streets freely.  They spoke boldly and touched those broken with love. Those who saw this were amazed.  The authorities rumbled and ordered them to be silent.   When the two apostles were released from custody, their companions cheered.  As they prayed for courage to continue, the building swayed.  God’s spirit was moving among them.  They were not alone.

Nicodemus came to Jesus at night with his questions.  He was a man of standing in the community.  An expert on ritual, he was captivated by what eluded his fine understanding.  Of course, with his reputation, these visits were secret.  Nicodemus was stuck in the middle; he could draw no closer, neither would he forget.  The spirit passed overhead as he pondered his quandary.

As Dante embarks on his journey through hell, he first enters the plain of Acheron, where the spiritually indifferent ones are left behind.  These souls cannot cross the river and face judgment.  Neither hell nor heaven wants them, so they are blown about forever like tumbleweed.  His is a harsh view of those who waver and never take a stand.

Nicodemus tried to go it alone and got stuck in a holding pattern.  We need one another to face the spirit.  Like the winds that bring spring to the plains, the spirit moves among us when we gather in our need and fear and hope.  Then we come alive.  That day we are reborn.

By Jeanne Shuler

Pope Francis Twitter Feed

* Our Way of Life *

 

"Our diverse talents and abilities, our differences in culture, nationality and age are assets for the richness of the community. Although we may be engaged in a variety of ministries, we all share the common call to apostolic discipleship in a community of the Catholic Apostolate of St. Vincent Pallotti."(OWL, 91)

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"Christ, the Apostle of the Eternal Father, and his mission are central to our personal and community life, giving meaning and direction to our thinking, our spirituality, our prayer, action and suffering." (OWL, 19)

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"As a community of disciples we are gathered around Jesus, the Apostle of the Eternal Father. Like the first disciples, we want to be with Jesus, be sent out by him and return to him to evaluate our service in the light of his presence." (OWL, 88)

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"As Pallottines, it is our special charism to foster growth in faith and love among the laity, to awaken them to awareness of their apostolic call, and to cooperate with them in furthering the apostolic mission." (OWL, 21)

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"Our relationships with one another should be marked by a love that bears all, believes all and hopes for all, a love that is neither conceited nor jealous, which hurts no one, nor is embittered or resentful. It is never discouraged but remains patient and kind. It rejoices with others and shares their suffering. It is with this kind of love that we should help and support one another." (OWL, 90)