Thought of the day
Thursday, January 26, 2017

Saints Timothy and Titus, bishops - Memorial

Benedict XVI, pope from 2005 to 2013 General Audience of 03/05/2006 (trans. © copyright Libreria Editrice Vaticana)

Saints Timothy and Titus, bishops - Memorial

Commentary of the day 

Benedict XVI, pope from 2005 to 2013 General Audience of 03/05/2006 (trans. © copyright Libreria Editrice Vaticana)
          "Saints Timothy and Titus, successors of the apostles"

The community, born from the proclamation of the Gospel, recognizes that it was called by the words of those who were the first to experience the Lord and were sent out by him. 
It knows that it can count on the guidance of the Twelve, as well as that of those who were gradually associated with them as their successors in the ministry of the Word and in the service of communion. Consequently, the community feels committed to transmit to others the "Good News" of the actual presence of the Lord and of his Paschal Mystery, brought about in the Spirit.

This is clearly highlighted and visible in certain passages of the Pauline Letters:  "I delivered to you... what I also received" (I Cor 15: 3). And this is important. St Paul, it is well-known, originally called by Christ with a personal vocation, was a real Apostle, yet for him too, fidelity to what he received was fundamentally important. He did not want "to invent" a new, so-to-speak, "Pauline" Christianity. Therefore, he insisted, "I have passed on to you what I too received". He passed on the initial gift that comes from the Lord and the truth that saves. Then, towards the end of his life, he wrote to Timothy:  "Guard this rich trust with the help of the Holy Spirit that dwells within us (II Tm 1: 14). 
It is also effectively demonstrated by this ancient testimony of the Christian faith written by Tertullian in about the year 200:  "(The Apostles) after first bearing witness to the faith in Jesus Christ throughout Judea and founding Churches (there), they next went forth into the world and preached the same doctrine of the same faith to the nations. They then in like manner founded Churches in every city, from which all the other Churches, one after another, derived the tradition of the faith and the seeds of doctrine, and are every day deriving them, that they may become Churches. Indeed, it is on this account only that they will be able to deem themselves apostolic, as being the offspring of apostolic Churches" .