Sunday, December 24, 2006

Prayer and Faith

From my John Paul II quote-a-day calendar:

Prayer is an effective aid for enriching our faith and making it fruitful, a faith that possesses the power and capacity for the continual improvement of our personal, family and social lives. Today the world, including our homeland, needs many men and women of mature faith who courageously confess Christ in every place and situation. There is a need for true heralds of the Gospel and messengers of the truth. We need men and women who believe and love, and who express this love of God in an authentic service to man. The greatest wealth that we can pass on to the younger generation on the threshold of the third millennium is our faith. Blessed is the nation that walks in the light of the Gospel, that lives on divine truth and that draws knowledge from the Cross. -- Speech to the Polish National Pilgrimage, July 6, 2000

When I read this at first, even though I knew he was speaking to his brother Poles, it sounded like a speech that could equally have been given to those of us in the United States. Then I realized it is a speech that would be true at any time in Christian history, for any nation. We are all in need of prayer, and the great possibilities of our future depend on handing on our faith. "In the world but not of it" comes to mind.