Authentically Free

As our Religious Family was born in these times, our proper law makes its own the denunciation of Saint John Paul II, who, already in 1992, said, “Today they have extended in a great way the range of the abuses of freedom, and this leads to new forms of slavery, very dangerous ones, because they are disguised under the appearance of freedom. This is the paradox, the profound drama of our time: in the name of freedom, slavery is imposed.”[1]
We consider that human freedom nowadays has been attacked probably as never before. For example, the biological, mental, and moral manipulation that the new order agendas are causing, the informational slavery to which the means of communication are submitting us, freedom apart from truth—proper of liberalism, the uncontrolled explosion of all sorts of addictions due to the eclipse of ethics and morals, etc.

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Consequently, the problem of freedom is a fundamental problem for us—one of enormous transcendence—and it is of particular concern to us. And this is not only because we are interested in entering into the problems of modern culture, but because Christian freedom is an intrinsic part and an indispensable component of the spirit of our Institute and of the manner according to which we desire to always live, as our Constitutions clearly declare: “The spirit which has animated our Institute from its beginning … is to live and to make others live under the action of the Holy Spirit, without coercion of any kind; this must be done by scrupulously respecting each individual’s conscience, promoting healthy pluralism, bringing others to fully live the freedom of God’s children,[2] because where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.[3]
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Such freedom is found in the very beginnings of our vocation as consecrated persons in the Institute of the Incarnate Word. For who can deny the fact that “every vocation is born from the encounter of two freedoms: that which is Divine, and that which is human,”[4] and that our vocation to love the Incarnate Word above all things is nothing other than a call to freedom and to happiness? Furthermore, it is precisely by the full exercise of our freedom that we have deliberately decided to bind ourselves to God in loving service. That is why our formula of profession says, “I, N.N., freely make an oblation of my entire being to God.”[5]

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[1] Saint John Paul II, Sunday Homily in the Polish Church of St. Stanislaus in Rome, June 28, 1992; quoted in Directory of Spirituality, 193.

[2] Rom 8:21.

[3] Constitutions, 33-34, quoting 2 Cor 3:17.

[4] Saint John Paul II, Message for the XXXIV World Day of Prayer for Vocations, April 20, 1997.

[5] Constitutions, 254; 257.

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