Gifts, Charisms and Fruits of the Holy Spirit
“And behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city, until you are clothed with power from on high” (Lk 24:49). The resurrected Jesus has already sent the Holy Spirit upon all and all have received it but all are not clothed with power. What does this mean? Being clothed with power means that the manifestation of the power of the Holy Spirit is visible in one’s life and ministry. Clothed with power is also known as anointing of the Holy Spirit or baptism in the Holy Spirit.
The difference between receiving the Holy Spirit and Anointing of the Holy Spirit
The one who has received the Holy Spirit does not manifest major signs and wonders but the one who is anointed exhibits mighty manifestations of the Holy Spirit. These manifestations are nine in number and they are the gift of tongues, prophesy, interpretation, wisdom, knowledge, discerning the spirit, faith, healings and miracles (1Cor 12:8-12). These manifestations are also known as charisms. Charisms are not ordinary gifts of the Holy Spirit but special ones, which are not given to all. In an anointed person at least one of these manifestations will be evidenced. All those who receive baptism of water or even baptism of desire (YouCat 199) receive the Holy Spirit (Jn 20:23). But all of them do not receive the power or anointing of the Holy Spirit, implying that they might not operate in any of the charisms. This is the difference between receiving the Holy Spirit and anointing by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Why does God anoint someone with manifestations? God anoints someone to do some special work in his church. All Catholic priests are anointed because they have a specific role and work in the Church. Therefore, they are bestowed with special gifts which are grafted to them. “…by the ordination the transforming power, healing power and saving power of Jesus are grafted to all catholic priests…” (YouCat 250).
The anointing can be explained with an example of a breeze. When a mass of air moves softly, we call it a breeze and when it increases its velocity, it is referred to as wind. The wind increasing in its velocity becomes a storm, and a storm increasing in its power and vigour turns into a hurricane. A hurricane is termed as a cyclone when the strength of the hurricane intensifies. The manifestation, effect and power of cyclone are entirely different from the effect and power of a breeze. But the presence and movement of air is common to all these phenomena. In the same way all have received the Holy Spirit but all those who have been anointed by the Holy Spirit have different experiences. The presence of the Holy Spirit as breeze is in all who are baptized by water or by desire but quite often mighty manifestations might not be evidenced in them (CCC compendium 265). All those who exhibit at least one of the manifestations of the Spirit are called Charismatics because they operate in charisms. Consequently, one has a personal choice and vocation to help the presence of the Holy Spirit intensify in him/her to the intensity of a cyclone through his/her prayer and personal efforts. King Solomon remarks that though all have the same origin as he, the anointing upon him made a difference to his intelligence and wisdom (Wis 7:5-7).
That opportunity to get anointed was initially received at the first Pentecost in Jerusalem. Manifestations of the Spirit were displayed as a cyclone and fire accompanied with a big sound (Acts 2:1-4). Among the 120 people, 11 had already received the Holy Spirit but they were not baptized or clothed with power. On the Pentecost Sunday, these 11 and the remaining 109 were anointed by the power of the Holy Spirit. Thereafter manifestations or charisms were visible in their ministries permanently.
So, what is a charism? Charism is considered as one among other gifts of the Holy Spirit. It is not an ordinary one but an extraordinary one, which is bestowed on individuals for the common good. It is to help other individuals, and the nation but above all for the building up of the Church. The use of the charism is under the due discretion of the Magisterium because a charism is given to individuals for the Church (CCC compendium 160). And one should also be aware that charisms are not toys for personal use but tools for evangelization.
The means to receive the Anointing
1. Oil of anointing: God taught Moses to prepare the oil of anointing with four ingredients and their measures. Fine liquid myrrh weighing 500 shekels, cinnamon weighing 250 shekels, cane of 250 shekels, cassia of 500 shekels and a hin of olive oil were to be used to prepare the oil. Moses had to anoint the priests and sacred vessels with this oil. All those who touched the anointed person or objects became holy (Ex 30:23-33). Ordinary people had neither the opportunity to be anointed with this oil nor were they allowed to prepare it. If they attempted, they would be excommunicated. But people were anointed through the anointed priests or objects.
The functions of the ingredients of the holy oil: Myrrh was for relief of pain, cinnamon was for flavour, cane was for joy and cassia was for hunger. Cane is an aromatic plant in the Middle East. People used to keep the leaves of aromatic cane in their bed rooms for good fragrance. The smell of cane is a source of joy to the people. Cassia is a commonly found plant in the Middle East and East African countries. People used to eat the leaves of cassia after a heavy meal, for effective digestion. It was so effective that the meal was digested soon after and they would hunger for one more course of meals. So, all those who are anointed will have relief from pain, a flavour-filled and a good to taste life, and above all they will be filled with joy, hungry for the Word of God.
2. Holy gatherings with the unity of hearts and minds: The gathering of the people of God, gain the effect of the use of the oil of anointing (Ps 133). Therefore, the scripture warns that the people of God should not miss the Sunday gatherings (Heb 10:25).
3. Faith in Christ Jesus: When one believes in Christ Jesus one shall experience rivers of living water overflowing from his/her heart (Jn 7:37-39). This anointing is then shared by all in the family (Acts 2:38). The anointing that one has received through faith in Christ will save his/her family as well (Acts 16:31). Therefore, it is one’s own negligence if his/her family is not saved, as the one has not cared to get anointed.
4. Sacraments: Church gives the Holy Spirit to her children through the Sacraments (CCC compendium 146).
Once the Holy Spirit has been received or one has been anointed by the Spirit, then that one has a great responsibility to rekindle it to the intensity of a cyclone or a Pentecost, because the Pentecost day onwards the believers started operating in the charisms effectively and powerfully. The following are the nine ways to rekindle the Holy Spirit:
Nine Ways to Rekindle the Holy Spirit
1. Repentance: Jesus said “Repent and believe in the good news then you will enter into the kingdom of God.” The kingdom of God means a life guided by the Holy Spirit. Ongoing repentance is needed for ongoing anointing. All those who repent will not have any punishment (CCC 1472).
2. Reconciliation: Peter reprimanded Simon that unless he repents and frees himself from hatred and wickedness, he shall not have any share in the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 8:21-23). A mind which is totally freed from hatred and is reconciled with God and humans will have an ongoing anointing.
3. Faith in Jesus: Jesus proclaimed that out of the believer’s heart, rivers of living water will overflow (Jn 7:37-39). Peter declared that all those who repent and receive baptism in the name of Jesus shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit; they and their children as well as those who are afar off (Acts 2:38-39). All those who receive him and believe in him are empowered to become the children of God (Jn 1:12). And the children of God have the right to the anointing of the Holy Spirit. All those who believe in Christ Jesus are the Messianic people and they thus have the privilege to an ongoing anointing in them because the Holy Spirit remains permanently in the Messiah and the Messianic people.
4. Prayer: St. Luke provokes, “How much more will the Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.” (Lk 11:11-13). Prayer is a relationship with God (CCC compendium 534). All those who have a good relationship with God through conscious, constant prayer will be rekindled with the Holy Spirit
5. Word of God and Magisterium of the Church: People are baptized with the Holy Spirit, when they hear the Word of God (Acts 10:44-48). Many things which are not expressly stated in the bible are observed and found in the Tradition of the Church (Jn 20:30). Therefore, one has to interpret the Word of God according to the Tradition and the teaching of the Church (CCC compendium 19). All those who study the Word of God in accordance with the Magisterium of the Church will be reignited with the Holy Spirit.
6. Sacraments: Regular Mass and Confessions are helpful for one to receive the anointing of the Holy Spirit. When Jesus received baptism, he was filled with the Holy Spirit (Lk 3:21). When Saul was anointed with oil he was filled with the Holy Spirit (1Sam 10:1) and David also received mighty anointing when the oil was poured on his head (1 Sam 16:13). The Church transmits the Holy Spirit to her believers through the Sacraments (CCC compendium 146). And so, it is very difficult to be rekindled with the Holy Spirit without frequent reception of the Sacraments.
7. Practicing mercy and compassion: One has to be merciful as the heavenly Father is merciful (Lk 6:36) and all those who are merciful will receive mercy from God (Mt 5:7). St. Faustina, wrote in her diary that one would get supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit if one is merciful in action and prayer. Therefore, practicing corporal and spiritual acts of mercy and compassion is essential to have the rekindling of the Holy Spirit.
8. Receiving the laying on of hands: Samaritans and Ephesians were filled with the Holy Spirit when they received the laying on of hands by the Apostles (Acts 8:17 & 19:6). s People of God receive mighty anointing through the laying on of hands (CCC compendium 265 and 2Tim 1:6).
9. Sufferings: Jesus was anguished till he received another baptism and that was of blood or suffering (Lk 12:50). There is a kind of joy in suffering and St. Paul exulted in it because the power of Christ and the gift of revelation rested upon him through the suffering (2Cor 12:9). Sufferings do not originate from God but from the enemy Satan as also from sin. But all sufferings will be transformed into good of those who love God (Rom 8:28). Personal sufferings are means to attain the power of the Holy Spirit for sanctifying the Church – the body of Christ (Col 1:24). Chastisement is also a means for the anointing (Heb 12: 5-6). God does not give suffering but only allows it (CCC compendium 314, 72 & 58) and brings good out of evil as written in the diary of St. Faustina (D 431 and in CCC 312).
13 Blessings of Anointing of the Holy Spirit
The most important blessing in our life is the anointing of the Holy Spirit (Gal 6:15). If we neglect the most important blessing, nothing good might take place in our life. There are thirteen benefits of the anointing or infilling of the Holy Spirit.
1. Our relationship with God and man will change. We grow to realise that God is our real father (Rom 8:14-17) and mother (Is 66:13) for God is neither man nor woman but is both and He is a perfect father and a perfect mother (CCC 370). All others turn as our brothers and sisters in Christ (1Th 5:1-2); Jesus, the Savior of our life (Acts 4:12) and the Holy Spirit, the real Helper (Jn 15:26).
2. Jesus is Lord and we will declare that He is Lord (1 Cor. 12:3). Nobody can say that Jesus is Lord except by the power of the Holy Spirit. If we do not declare that Jesus is Lord then we might not be saved (Rom 10:9).
3. Faith will perform miracles (Mk 16:17-18). We will be able to do the five things mentioned in Mk 16:17-18 for the benefit of all. Our faith will be able to move mountains even (Mk 11:23).
4. We will learn the Scriptures, Tradition and the Magisterium of the Church without any mistake or difficulty. Theanointing will teach us everything that we would want to know about our salvation (1 Jn 2:27; Jn 14:26).
5. We will receive gifts (Is 11:2), fruits (Gal 5:23), ministry gifts (Eph 4:11-13) and charisms of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 12:8-11). The devil also gives the same charisms and powers of healing, miracles and others. But good fruits are not manifested (Gal 5:22-23), instead there are only bad fruits (Gal 5:19-21).
6. It is easy to love God with all our heart, all our soul and all our might (Dt 6:5). Anointing helps us to love God and so all things work together for our good. (Rom 8:28).
7. Our memory will increase. The Holy Spirit will remind us of everything that Jesus taught (Jn 14:26).
8. Aim in life will be given (Mt 16:24-26). To save our soul, we have to take up our cross and follow Christ. Salvation and eternal life will then become the main aim of our human life.
9. Forgiveness turns easy. We cannot forget the offences done against us but we will be able to forgive them remembering the offences without pain, because the love of God is poured out into our hearts by the Holy Spirit (Rom 5:5). And so, we shall be able to love them as God loves them.
10. Filled with joy and peace. The peace and joy results in the healing of our inner beings for Jesus had said that our sorrow will turn into joy (Jn 16:20).
11. Prayer pattern will change and varieties of prayers would emanate. Long prayers will no longer be monotonous because we know to pray properly and effectively (Rom 8:26).
12. Healing and rejuvenation in spirit and body. Suppose we are not healed then we will get the gift of joyful suffering (2Cor.12:9). Generally, almost all of our sicknesses will be healed and problems will be solved through the anointing.
13. We will be successful in all fields of activities such as business, studies, ministry, family life and profession.
Following is the testimony of a person who came for a day’s retreat. He received the anointing of the Holy Spirit and that anointing resulted in various blessings as he shares in this testimony.
On Mon, Mar 24, 2014 at 2:06 PM, Joseph K Antony <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Hello Father Jose Vettiyankal,
Praise the Lord!
My name is Joseph Antony and I attended the retreat along with my wife Latha, held at Velacherry, Chennai, India. At the end of the retreat, I was one of the persons giving a testimony. What I had said was brief, and I would like to add some more aspects.
In the testimony I had said that in the previous retreat held in Anna Nagar (in November 2013), I was a beaten man facing a) Family problems b) Health problems and c) Business problems. At the end of that retreat, Fr Jose Vettiyankal had assured me that my problems would be solved. My wife and I followed the guidelines as best as we could. I even attempted the spiritual ICU.
Now in this retreat I testify the following:
1. With respect to my family problems, the long-delayed marriage of my elder daughter is proceeding well, and we had the engagement function recently. My second daughter has been very well placed even before she finished her Master's degree.
2. Due to cancer one of my kidneys had to be removed and some of my liver parameters were not too good. I changed my diet and stopped taking some medicines and behold my parameters are very good now. Praise the Lord!
3. The last time at the retreat, I was wearing a support belt due to severe backache. Fr Jose had indicated that there were many people who were cured of their back problems. Very sceptically, I claimed it, because there was actually some relief during the course of the day retreat. Now I am completely cured. I walk around 5 kms, twice or thrice a week and even take part in mini marathons occasionally. Praise the Lord!
4. My business was in terrible shape for almost 5 years now. But now, new opportunities are coming up and some seem to be really good.
Thank you, Father,
And when one receives blessings from Jesus, the natural consequence would be to share about Jesus to all others – to spread the Good News of his work in our midst. There are around twenty ministries that one can involve in, towards this end.
20 Ministries in the Catholic Charismatic Movement
The driving force of doing ministry in the kingdom of God!
All of us do minister in the kingdom of God, but what is the real intention and motivation of these ministries? Some preach the Word of God out of jealousy, pride while some others to defeat other ministers and achieve personal fame. St. Paul’s letter to the Corinthians says ‘The love of Christ urges me to do the ministry in the kingdom of God’ (2 Cor 5:14). The love of Christ is the driving force of ministry and the glory of God is the goal.
The driving force of the ministry of Jesus is given in Luke 4:14. There we read that Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit before he came to his hometown to preach. His fame spread all around. There are three driving forces that urged Jesus to do his ministry:
· The anointing of the Holy Spirit (Lk 4:18).
· The mission consciousness that He was sent by the Father (Lk 4:18).
· Compassion and mercy that moved Jesus (Mt 14:14).
The miseries of the people, elicited the compassion of Jesus and he healed them all. “When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick” (Mt 14:14).
People, who are working in the ministry of Christ, should possess the mind of Christ. “Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus” (Phil 2:4-5). St. Paul affirms that we have the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:16), and so, we should do our ministry in the kingdom of God with the mind of Christ. Let us examine our motivation, intention of preaching and evangelization..
Everyone is obliged to do some ministry in the kingdom of God. The following are the possibilities:
1. Apostolic ministry – ministry of the Bishops
2. Priestly ministry- ministry through the ministerial priesthood
3. Ministry of the religious/ consecrated
4. Preaching ministry
5. Counselling ministry
6. Intercession ministry
7. Physical healing ministry
8. Inner healing ministry
9. Deliverance ministry
10. Financial healing ministry
11. Family healing ministry
12. Volunteers-in Parishes, Retreat Centres, Institutions etc
13. Teachers of Catechism
14. Organizers of Prayer Groups, Bible Conventions, Retreats etc
15. Service Ministry – in Old Age Home, Home for Destitute, Health Centres, Food Distribution etc
16. Music Ministry or Praise and Worship ministry
17. Ministry of Testimony
18. Promotional ministry – Promoting people to attend retreats
19. Media Ministry – through Literature, Audio, Visual, Bible Distribution etc
20. Tithing of time, talent and treasure
Everyone who does ministry must have the intention and mind of Christ. Every minister must be anointed as Jesus is anointed. All those who are anointed will manifest charisms and the anointing is oriented towards ministries in the kingdom of God. Primarily the charisms are for building up of the Church and for helping an individual as also to help the nation. Hence charisms are manifestations of the anointing which are given to an individual for the common good (CCC compendium 160). The chosen one, whom God has sanctified or set apart, to work for his kingdom must receive these charisms as a gift of the Holy Spirit. Charisms are given to build up the mystical body of Christ, which is the Church (Eph 4:12, Col 1:24). Every minister is sent by Jesus, as Jesus is sent by the Father with full authority in heaven and on earth (Mt 28: 18-20). And every minister should also have sincere love and compassion for the other.
The sufferings and tears of the people must be the driving force of our ministry. And a minister always works for the liberation, healing and wellness of people world over as well as for souls in purgatory.
God's children groan with pain (Rom 8:20-23), as long as they are in this world. They are under great suffering and the Church must set them free through her ministries. Through the ministry of the Church the glory of Christ has to manifest and increase the world over. Hence, I pray that none of us do this noble and genuine ministry of Christ for self - glory, fame, money or profit.
8 Enemies of the Anointing of the Holy spirit
8. Environmental pollution
If any of these enemies are present in a person’s ministry, then, his/her ministry will be destroyed, eventually.
Gifts, Charisms and Fruits of the Holy Spirit
There are five categories of gifts revealed in the bible. They are Isaiah or Traditional gifts (Is.11:2), Motivation or Roman gifts (Rom 12.6-8), Manifestation or Charismatic or Corinthian gifts (1Cor.12.8-11), Messianic Gifts (Mk 16:17-18) and Ministry or Ephesian gifts (Eph 4:11-13 1 Cor 12:28,30). The traditional gifts of the Holy Spirit, which are given to all believers in God shall be elucidated in the first instance. Motivation or Roman gifts are natural talents which are given by God. All human beings have some or the other talent. Charismatic or Corinthian gifts are known as special graces or extraordinary gifts of the Holy Spirit and are not given to all but only to some individuals as the Catholic Church clarifies (CCC compendium 160). Messianic Gifts are given to all who believe in Jesus, implying the doers of the Word of God. Ministry or Ephesian gifts are given to individuals who are especially called for pastoral ministry in the Church. These gifts are given to continue the work of Jesus until his Second Coming.
The Isaiah Gifts (Is 11:2) or Traditional Gifts
(Source: ‘Novena to the Holy Spirit for the Seven Gifts’ - https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/devotions/novena-to-the-holy-spirit-for-the-seven-gifts-309)
In the Sacrament of Baptism, the Holy Spirit is poured out in fullness with virtues and gifts being freely given to all believers to sustain them in their moral life. This means the believers receive them all! The gifts of the Holy Spirit are generously given so that we fulfil the God-given purpose of our lives. We confirm our acceptance of these gifts in the Sacrament of Confirmation, but they are often not "stirred up" (2 Tim 1:6) into activity until we are “baptized in the Holy Spirit” (Mt 3:11 and Acts 2:1-4). We need to ask ourselves as to how we are using the traditional gifts of the Spirit to fulfil our God-given purpose in life!
The Magisterium of the Church states there are seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. “The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. They belong in their fullness to Christ, Son of David. They complete and perfect the virtues of those who receive them. They make the faithful docile in readily obeying divine inspirations.”
Let your good spirit lead me on a level path. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God . . . If children, then heirs, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ” (CCC 1831)
1. Gift of Wisdom is an understanding in our inner being, enabling us to see God’s world vision. It helps to develop in us, the ability to make judgments about everything in our lives on the basis of a deep, personal union with the Lord and his abiding love. Wisdom alternately understood provides divine answers and remedies to human issues and issues of the world just as it helped King Solomon solve an issue of the two women who claimed the motherhood to a single child (1Kgs 3:16-28).
Wisdom is the most perfect of the all the traditional gifts. It embodies all other gifts, just as charity embraces all other virtues. The book of Wisdom affirms, “All good things came to me with her, innumerable riches in her hand.” It gives strength to our faith, fortifies hope, perfects charity, and promotes the practice of virtues to the maximum. Wisdom illumines the mind to discern and relish things divine, that earthly things become distasteful, while the cross of Christ turns most savoured with its divine sweetness according to the words of our Divine Saviour: Take up your cross and follow Me for My yoke is sweet and My burden is light (Mt 11:30).
It is good that we have to pray thus to have this gift. O’ Wise One, reveal to my soul the mysteries of the heaven above, with its exceeding glory and majesty. Teach me, dear Spirit to love heaven above and beyond all passing pleasures and gratification on earth. Kindly help me to attain it and possess it for ever.
2. Gift of Understanding is the enlightenment of our minds and hearts with divine Truth so that we grasp the mysteries of the Lord, thus enabling us to seek the Lord more deeply. This gift also illuminates the Holy Scriptures as we read them, giving us the increased sense of the knowledge of God and his ways. Signs of this gift are a greater treasuring of mysteries, the bible and a renewed appreciation of the Sacraments. It can be perceived as a gift of God to understand the mysteries, the Sacraments and the Word of God (Bible) without theological and dogmatic error.
Understanding, as a gift helps us to grasp the meaning of the Truth of our Christian religion. By faith we know the Truth of our religion but by understanding we learn to appreciate it and live it. It helps us to penetrate into the deeper meanings of the revealed Truth. And through understanding we are quickened to its newness and its relevance to our lives. Our faith ceases to be sterile, and in fact inspires a mode of life that bears eloquent testimony to God. St. Peter explains that knowing God and Jesus is a power and this power brings all divine blessings into our lives (2Pt 1:2-3).
I recommend all to pray thus to have this gift. O’ Master Spirit, educate our minds so that we may perceive and grasp the divine mysteries of salvation so that we may dwell in the Eternal Light; the light of Glory to have a clear vision of you and the Father and the Son.
3. Gift of Counsel (Right Judgment) is the ability to receive and give good advice. It empowers us to make decisions in the spirit. It is a gift for practical life situations and allows for maturity as we grow in our walk with Christ. Sometimes counsel is given in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. The Holy Spirit helps us discern good from evil and right from wrong. We grow in this gift by humbling ourselves to seek help from others when faced with a difficult situation. It can be grasped as the gift of God to give right counsel, at the right time and to the right person. Ahithophel had this gift as observed in 2 Samuel 16: 21- 23 and in 2 Samuel 17:1-4 he had given sound counsel but God made it fail as quoted in 2 Samuel 17: 14, because of the prayer of David. David and Absalom generally considered the counsel of Ahithophel as revelation from God.
Counsel endows us with supernatural prudence enabling us to judge promptly and rightly the course of action, especially in difficult situations. Counsel applies the principles furnished by knowledge and understanding to the innumerable concrete cases that confront us in the course of our daily duty as parents, teachers, public servants, and Christian citizens. Counsel is supernatural common sense, a priceless treasure in the quest of salvation. Above all counsel from God may direct our ways in Truth.
If we pray thus, we will receive this gift. O’ Paraclete, lead me and escort me in all my ways, that I may always choose to do the will of God. Dispose my heart to do only good and ward off all that is evil. Conduct me dear Counsellor Spirit, by the straight path of Your ways to Life Eternal for which my heart thirsts lifelong.
4. Gift of Knowledge is having a deep trust and assurance about the Lord, his ways and about knowing the truths of Christian revelation. Study of the Scriptures and the teachings of the Church on a daily basis help us grow in this gift. It can be explained as a gift of God to understand the will of God for oneself and others as also the knowledge of what God has already prepared and given us as it is written in the Scriptures (1 Cor 2:9 That eyes have not seen, ears have not heard, heart has not perceived).
Knowledge qualifies the soul to assess created things and its true worth in its relation to God. Knowledge exposes the pretence of the creatures, unveils their emptiness and points to their true object as instruments in the service of God. It unravels to us the loving care of God even in the midst of hardships and guides us to glorify him in every circumstance of life. Illumined by it, we are able to assign first things first and prize the love of God beyond all else. Knowledge from God is a fountain of eternal life.
All those who pray thus will get an opportunity to enjoy this gift. O’ Omniscient Spirit, grant that I may perceive the will of the Father; and the nothingness of earthly things, so that I may comprehend its vanity, using it all only for Your glory and my own salvation! Let me gaze ever beyond them at You, and Your eternal rewards.
5. Gift of Fortitude (Courage or Strength or Zeal) helps us handle with vigour and confidence the trials and dangers that we encounter in our Christian life. It builds in us the ability to choose consistently the right way to live despite disappointments and troubles. We can grow in courage by resisting the temptations in the world, that of money, power, self-centeredness, and self-righteousness. This gift is often regarded as the root of the charism of evangelism. It can be acknowledged as the ability to resist temptations and endure persecutions.
Fortitude helps the soul courageously brave natural fear, and it supports in the performance of duty till the very end. Fortitude imparts to the will a drive and an energy which moves it to undertake the most arduous task without a doubt. It empowers the one to face dangers, to trample underfoot human respect and endure without complaints the slow martyrdom of even a lifelong tribulation. All those who persevere unto the end shall be saved said Jesus (Mt 10:22).
I encourage each and every one reading this to pray thus to grow in this gift more and more. O’ Omnipotent Spirit, rest upon my soul in time of trouble and adversity. Kindly sustain my efforts at holiness, strengthening in my weaknesses, giving me courage against all the assaults of the enemy so that I may never be overcome and separated from You! My God who is my greatest Good, always shield and fortify me.
6. Gift of Piety (Love) referred as the "Spirit of adoption" produces in us a loving worship which is worthy, consciousness of God as our Father (Rom 8:15). Piety leads us to a true image of our Father as merciful, faithful, abounding in steadfast love, slow to anger and yet firm and just. It also empowers us to realize God’s holiness in other people and love them. Piety is further inculcated in us through the practice of justice, attitudes of cooperation with authority, truthfulness, friendliness, and humility. It can be expounded as the gift of God to accept him as Father; respect and love him with all our heart, mind and strength (Dt 6:5).
Piety generates in our heart a filial affection for God as our most loving Father. It prompts us to love and respect for his sake, persons and things consecrated to him as well as those who are bestowed with his authority. His blessed Mother and the saints in the Church, the Mother-Church’s visible heads, our parents and superiors, our country and its rulers become the object of our love and exaltation. One who is gifted with piety finds the practice of his or her faith a delightful service rather than a burden or duty. Where there is love, there is no labour or pain as we all know. In perfect love there is no fear (1Jn 4:18).
If we thus pray regularly, we will freely enjoy this gift. O’ Precious Holy Spirit, come and possess my heart. Enkindle in me such a love for God that I may be gratified and contented only in His service; and for His sake, lovingly submit to all legitimate authority.
7. Fear of God is an attitude of reverence and awe in the presence of God. It should not be confused with the emotion of fear. However, fear of offending God is a manifestation of our reverence and respect for who God is. It enables us to revere all of life as a reflection of God’s life and love. We grow in reverence by praying to God often, being thankful for his gifts, and respecting his name. This gift is the spiritual door to a full Christian life and a great aid in overcoming sin in our lives (Ps 111:10; Pro 9:10; Ps 34:12-15). It can be defined as a decision not to offend God through sin though not due to the consequences of sin or the thought of hell or purgatory, but because we are not interested in offending our God who is always good to us, for God is good all the time!
The Gift of the Fear of God fills us with a sovereign respect for God and makes us dread nothing so much as to offend him by sin. It is a dread that arises not from the thought of hell but from sentiments of reverence, filial submission and love to our heavenly Father. It is the beginning of wisdom that detaching us from worldly pleasures which could possibly separate us from God. As the book of Wisdom quotes fear of the Lord is the beginning and source of all wisdom.
Holy Spirit inspires us to pray thus to possess this gift. Blessed Awesome Spirit of God, penetrate my innermost heart that I may set You, before my face, forever to help me shun all things that can offend You! O’ Awe inspiring One, make me worthy to appear before the pure eyes of the Divine Majesty in heaven where You live and reign forever and ever in the unity of the Most Holy Trinity.
Comparison between Gifts and Charisms
These Traditional gifts are more or less permanent in a person, whereas Charisms are not permanent. Charisms are operative only as long as a person is united with Christ just as an electric wire passes power as long as it is connected to a generator. Just as Jesus warned that a branch which is separated from the vine is useless (Jn 15:4), so also is the one who is disconnected from Jesus, powerless and have no power ministry. But the branch that remains in the vine, has leaf, flower, fruit and others as a natural consequence of abiding in the vine. Likewise, the one remaining in Jesus, by keeping his commandments operates in charisms as a natural outcome of this abiding. Charisms are not operative as long as one does not abide in him. Whereas traditional gifts are the manifestations of the love of God which is poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit (Rom 5:5) without end.
These are the manifestations of the love of God poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit (Rom 5:5). The traditional gifts (Is 11:2) are manifestations of the moral life of Christians which is sustained by the Holy Spirit. These traditional gifts are very practical and useful gifts to lead a successful life in this world. These also help in desiring and furthering spiritual goals.
The Charisms or the Charismatic/Corinthian Gifts
Definition of Charisms
“Charism is also gift of the Holy Spirit but not ordinary but extraordinary gift which is bestowed on individuals for common good, to help other individuals and to help the nation and above all it is for the building up of the Church. The use of the charism is under the due discretion of the Magisterium because charism is given to individuals for the church…” (CCCC 160). And also, one should be aware that charisms are not toys for personal use but tools for evangelization.
Charisms as elaborated by the Church
" Whether extraordinary or simple and humble, charisms are graces of the Holy Spirit which directly or indirectly benefit the Church, ordered as they are to her building up, to the good of men, and to the needs of the world" (CCC 799).
"It is in this sense that discernment of charisms is always necessary. No charism is exempt from being referred and submitted to the Church’s shepherds. ‘Their office [is] not indeed to extinguish the Spirit, but to test all things and hold fast to what is good,’ so that all the diverse and complementary charisms work together ‘for the common good’" (CCC 801).
Holy Spirit helps to manifest the power of God through charisms. There are four types of graces available for believers. Special graces are known as charisms which are oriented to sanctifying grace (CCC 2024). Even evil spirits have charisms but they do not have fruits or gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Purpose of Charisms is to Redeem People from DDEPP
Charisms are given to us to redeem people from the yoke of first Adam which comprises of ‘human weakness, ignorance, sickness and sufferings or human miseries, death and concupiscence’ (CCC 418). Charisms are also given to rescue people from human miseries of DDEPP, ‘diseases, deprivations, exploitation, poverty and psychic illness’ (CCC 2448). These miseries are to be effaced entirely through the operation of charisms. It is also the motive of the Holy Spirit to bring humanity to the yoke or cross of the Second Adam – Jesus Christ through the operation of the charisms. So, what then are the elements of the yoke of Jesus (Mt.11:30)? The elements are REPSSST (R- Responsibility related to our duty or mission; E- Evangelization and its burdens; P- Persecution that we receive as a result of our work for Christ and of Christ; S-Self-denial or self-purification or self-sanctification; and T- Temptations that we ought to overcome every day).
Participation in the Suffering of Christ (CCC 618)
We have to take up the cross of Jesus and follow him (Mt 10: 38 and 16:24) to share the power of his resurrection. The elements of the cross of Jesus according to the Magisterial teaching of CCC 618 are REPSSST. REPSSST helps us participate in the cross of Jesus. Such aspects of human sufferings are redemptive if and when we are united with Christ (CCC 1506). Human miseries of DDEPP are generally not considered as redemptive because the compassion of Christ elicited him to take these, upon himself and suffer in his own body to liberate humanity. He established the Church to continue the ministry of liberation through charisms and to distribute the fruits of the redemption till his Second Coming.
The Charisms in detail
Tongue - This is a gift of prayer in various forms. How will it be given to you? While in prayer, your natural sound will be suspended and a new sound will emanate with varied movements of your tongue. It might be a single syllable or a few of an unstudied language. CCC 2003 elaborates about the gift of tongue and the word of knowledge. Romans 8:26 quotes that the gift of tongue is a prayer of appropriate intercession in an unstudied language. St. Antony used this gift while preaching. Praying in tongues does not need interpretation but speaking in tongues needs interpretation. What is the meaning of speaking in foreign tongues? It is a variation of the charism of tongue, when neither the speaker nor the listener knows the language, he/she speaks. In such a case, the charism of interpretation is required to explain the message. Whereas when the speaker knows the language he is using and the people understand it, as in their mother tongues then there is no need for interpretation. This is what had happened at the first Pentecost. And if prophecy is given in glossolalia (speaking in tongue) even then interpretation is required. The biblical verses in 1 Cor 14:39-40 recommend that one does not prohibit another from praying in tongues but only monitor that it be done in an orderly manner.
Prophecy is the ability to preach the Word of God without any theological mistake; according to the text and context and in line with the Magisterial Teachings of the Church.
1. Who is a Prophet and what are his duties? As defined in CCC compendium539 a prophet is a spokesperson for God. He shares an intimate relationship with God, conveying to the people what he has heard from God. He intercedes for the people, he minsters to. Prophet Elijah is the model for all prophets.
2. One needs a written permission from the local ordinary to preach in public, but not so to preach or evangelize one on one. Why is permission needed? The reason is very simple. Faith comes from hearing and hearing from preaching (Rom 10:17). If the preaching is erroneous, then faith formation will be erroneous and flawed. Therefore, there should be a monitoring authority.
3. Jeremiah 29:8-10 declares that ‘I have not sent them but they preach’ and this indeed is a tragedy. Therefore, the Church has to send a person with a mandate to preach. 1Corinthians 14:32 states that the spirit of prophets is subjected to prophets and it means that a preacher should be in communion with all other pastors and the authority of the Church.
It is a gift to interpret mysteries, the bible, dreams, visions, gift of tongues, Magisterial Teachings of the Church without any theological error or Magisterial error.
CCC compendium 19 relates that interpretation should be according to the text and context and in line with the teachings of the Church. Only prophecy in tongue or speaking in tongues need interpretation while the rest of the categories of tongues do not need interpretation.
Some examples of interpretation in the Old Testament are Joseph’s interpretation of the dream of the fellow prisoners and Pharaoh (Gen 40 and 41); Daniel’s interpretation of the dream of the king (Dan 5:25-28) and others.
4. Word of Wisdom
Word of wisdom is an ability to find out remedies to a problem as by King Solomon in 1King 3:16-28 (King Solomon solved an issue between two women who claimed the motherhood to a child) or it can be an answer of a question as in Mt 22:15-22 (render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s).
1. Gen 41:38 - Joseph gave remedy of a problem.
2. Dan 5:12 - Daniel had an excellent spirit that rested up on him, and so he had remedies for all problems and answers for all questions.
3. Dan 6:3 - Daniel answered a question.
5. Word of Knowledge
Word of knowledge is the ability to know what is hidden in the past, present or future.
The messages forbidden from being revealed
1. One should not reveal the name of the person or identify the person the counselee is going to marry.
2. The vocation or life style suitable for a person should not be revealed - E.g., priesthood, religious life, marriage or single life.
3. The person operating in the charism should not reveal the identity of the thief, whereabouts of the thief or of the theft article.
4. One should not reveal secrets as that of an illegal relationship of a partner when the other partner is not aware of it.
5. The exact time of the death of a person should not be revealed by the one giving the message though he might know it.
6. One should not reveal something against the revealed truth in the bible or Magisterial Teachings of the Church.
7. One should not reveal a matter that might cause a scandal or a conflict in the society, Church, family, etc.
Above all, the messages should help the person grow spiritually, leading towards a deep personal experience of conversion and transformation.
If the person does not live as per the commandments and precepts of Christ there is a possibility that the positive word of knowledge which is given might not be materialised in his or her life. In that case, there is no point in blaming the preacher/counsellor/visionary. In the bible, there is an instance of one man being invited to a wedding banquet. He would have possibly been offered a seat in the wedding hall but was eventually rejected and punished because he did not make himself worthy of it (Mt 22:11-14). Just the same, if we do not make ourselves worthy to receive the fulfilled word of knowledge as foretold by a counsellor, it will not come to pass and so we will not enjoy it.
Means of receiving the Word of Knowledge. It can be received through:
1. A dream as of Joseph’s in the Old Testament
2. Gift of tongue as is manifested in Acts 2:1-4
3. A verse from the bible
4. A vision – like in the case of Peter who was in Joppa (Acts 10)
5. The sense of smell
6. As an internal word of inspiration
7. External signs
8. Natural phenomena like wind, flood, fire, breeze, rain, and so on
9. An audible voice
10. Through animals and people (donkey of Balaam in OT; man carrying a pot in NT and others).
Discernment is the ability to recognize or distinguish between divine, angelic, evil and human spirits and others. It is also the ability to exorcise (only Priests are allowed as per CIC 1171 and CCC 1673) with due permission or deliver through the deliverance prayer of Pope Leo XIII or bind and cast out spirits through the apt prayers. Deliverance can also result through the proclamation of the Word of God as it happened in Samaria (Acts 8:4-8).
You are allowed to bind and cast out spirits.
The bible prophecies ‘You will cast out demons’ (Mk 16:17). It is a common gift given to all believers in Christ Jesus, because self-protection is the fundamental right of a person (self-protection is an International law). It is your right to protect yourself against demons. There is nothing wrong in it. Those who are not priests can bind and cast out spirits from upon others only up to the first degree of consanguinity. Only priests can bind and cast out spirits from upon anyone and everyone. Binding and casting out payer which has imprimatur is available in the prayer book named Infilling of the Holy Spirit (Ref. p.103) The bible in 1 Jn 4:1 mentions many types of spirits (do not believe all spirits).
Healing is the power of God, shared with believers to heal the sick people instantly or progressively or at a distance. CCC 1509 ascertains that healing power is given to some people to manifest the power of resurrection. 2 Corinthians 12:9 assures that ‘My grace is sufficient for you’ if healing is not granted a person. It means that, sometimes, a healing prayer might not heal the person but only grace is given to manage the sickness and turn the sickness as a means of gaining charisms to save others (less than 1% of those who pray might get this gift, because this is an exceptional gift). Generally, all are oriented towards healing either instantly or progressively. Three categories of people might however not be healed immediately or even in the future. (Ref. Infilling of the Holy Spirit p. 106).
Healing can be explained as a supernatural outpouring of God’s power which results in the healing of sickness and disease without the use of medical means. This can involve "sickness" of the body, soul or spirit. God is interested in healing our total person as it is declared by Jesus in Luke 4:18.
Lk 4:18 proclaims that the mandate of Jesus is:
· to bring glad tidings to the poor both materially and spiritually;
· to proclaim liberty to captives - those bound to illness and sin by the evil one;
· the recovery of sight to the physically and spiritually blind;
· to let the oppressed go free by setting the down-trodden free;
· to bind up the hearts that are broken by healing the innermost being and memories;
· proclaiming a year acceptable to the Lord with the healing of relationships – restoring of property, freeing of slaves, forgiving of unpaid debts.
Jesus used many different methods of healing - laying on of hands; casting out demons; spitting on mud and making a paste and then applying it or even proclaiming healing from a distance.
Jesus is the healer. Even healings that come to us through the intercession of Mary and the saints are through them but with Jesus being the Healer. Healing is given as a manifestation of the Holy Spirit to build up; encourage, strengthen; make new or whole an individual or a group for the glory of God; and as a blessing to his people – to sanctify or to make holy the recipient; to glorify God; to build faith, to be a sign of the power and presence of God; to meet the need; to change the circumstances; and to build up the Church. Healing might be a physical one or a psychological one or an emotional one, or a spiritual one or even a relational one. When we pray for healing, we are healed in one way or the other though it might sometimes not be what we have specifically asked for. Healing is often accompanied with the gift of tears – a wonderful gift described by one of the saints as the "washing of the soul." Joy expressed through "holy laughter" or tears often accompanies healing. Discernment of all the circumstances of the divine gift of healing is most important. Those in the healing ministry should be - in deep prayer; willing to receive continuous teaching; regular in the use of the Sacraments; open to charismatic gifts, especially word of knowledge and word of prophecy. It is recommended to refer to a book, “God Loves and heals” for knowing more about methods of healings, steps of healings, sources of healings, liturgical and non-liturgical healing services, disciplinary norms of healing service etc.
Miracle is the power of God shared with believers to show the work of God while praying or preaching/ listening/reading the Word of God. And these works are beyond the laws of nature and or beyond scientific explanations/human knowledge and human understanding.
Miracles are interventions into the natural course of events which seem to contradict the natural laws. Through the working of miracles, the Holy Spirit manifests the power of God beyond the natural realm: overriding the natural laws - as turning water into wine, multiplication of loaves and fishes; healing beyond the ordinary; as healing the withered hand (Lk 6:6-10) or the replacement of an organ that is not visible or the disappearance of a tumour without surgery or healing the vision of the blind without surgery.
The Lord bestows miracles to encourage, strengthen and support the faith of his people. He also does it to correct a certain situation which cannot be accomplished by natural means or even to show his power at work in response to a ministry of preaching or teaching. A miracle brings about awe and wonder at God’s power so that glory and honour is given to God alone. Miracles, which always happen instantaneously, are a much more a powerful sign of God’s presence and action than healings, which might be instantaneous or gradual or a speeded-up recovery. The gift of faith in God has to be certainly involved in the ministry of working miracles as one speaks the word of command in Jesus’ name without doubt and with full certitude and expectant faith.
Faith is a gift from God to know him and love him or a charism given just to help others. Heb: 11: 1 elucidates that faith is a gift. It is an assurance of things hoped for and guarantee of things unseen whereas Mk 16: 16-18 relates that faith is a charism or a power to help oneself and others. Five signs (Messianic gifts) are attached to all believers. No one can please God without faith (Heb 11:6). Heb.11 is the litany of faith.
Faith is a supernatural outpouring or anointing of the Holy Spirit which enables one to confidently believe without a doubt that which is spoken or undertaken in Jesus’ name will be accomplished. Faith involves entrusting oneself wholly to God and believing absolutely and completely what he reveals. This supernatural anointing of faith is different from historical or intellectual faith, which has not made connection with the real power of Jesus and does not produce fruit (Js 2:19). It is also different from temporary faith, which has no root because the heart and mind have remained hard and the individual has never fully surrendered to Jesus (Mt 13:3-8, 18-23). Saving or justifying faith is just basic trust in God for salvation and involves the submission of our will to the Lordship of Jesus (Rom 5:1-2). Whereas faith in God is belief in the nature and essence of God and his everlasting love while faith as fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22) is faithfulness to God regardless of circumstances but with no connection to ministerial gifts yet ministry faith is given to help us use our motivational gifts (Rom 12:2-8).
The gift of faith in God is the supernatural faith that will heal, bring about miracles, and move mountains! It is given spontaneously and lasts long enough for God’s purpose of the moment to be accomplished. To minister in the faith of God one should centre one’s mind on God and open one’s spirit to receive word of knowledge and word of wisdom as well as his faith and wait upon God to do what he wants to do!
12 Fruits of the Holy Spirit
Jesus said that a tree would be known by its fruits (Mt 7:16-20). The fruits in us give witness to the person we are. We are known after our fruits. According to the Vulgate version of Galatians there are twelve fruits of the Holy Spirit. The twelve fruits of the Holy Spirit are the manifestations of the love of Christ, and through these fruits one reflects the life of Christ. CCC-1832 states, “The fruits of the Spirit are perfections that the Holy Spirit forms in us as the first fruits of eternal glory. The Tradition of the Church lists twelve of them: charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control, chastity" Gal 5:22-23 (Vulgate). These fruits are the consequences of our abiding and our willingness to abide in Jesus. Very stressful situations and tremendous sufferings in unison with Jesus result in fruits of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. Whoever does not abide in me is thrown away like a branch and withers; such branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned” (Jn 15:5-6).
St. Paul’s Nine fruits of the Holy Spirit
CCC 736 elaborates, ‘By this power of the Spirit, God's children can bear much fruit. He who has grafted us onto the true vine will make us bear "the fruit of the Spirit: . . . love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control" (Gal 5:22-23). "We live by the Spirit" and the more we renounce ourselves, the more we "walk by the Spirit"’ (Gal 5:25). Though traditionally discussed as nine attributes of the fruit of the Spirit, the original Greek term translated as "fruit" is singular; because of its being one generically, though divided into many species which are spoken of as many fruits. It can be understood as many segments of an orange or many petals of a rose flower!
The purpose of the Fruit of the Spirit
The purpose of the fruit of the Spirit is nothing other than to love God and neighbour. Nothing can separate us from the love of God and so through the fruit of the Spirit we learn to abide in God's nature. The fruit of the Spirit is the power of God to enable us to become Christ-like. When we consider love, we observe that love is an exclusive affection and an ability to stand in favour of someone even when that person does not deserve it. When God loves us, he stands in favour of us, even though we do not deserve it due to our sinfulness. Therefore, love means to stand in favour of someone even beyond the eligibility of the person to be loved.
Twelve Fruits of the Holy Spirit
1. Love (Greek: agape, Latin: caritas)
It is an ability to love others as God loves them. It means to stand in favour of another even though that person does not deserve it. St. John 13: 34 recommends, “…love one another as I have loved you.” This is the new commandment. One who loves dwells in God; for God is love (1Jn 4:8). There is an intimate relationship between love and God. Love is the trait of God. When a person is filled with the Spirit of God, he is filled with God’s love. He gains strength to love others. This fruit enables a person to love the other without expecting anything from the other. This is the love of God in that we love one another without expectation (Nishkama karma). People who are in sin might neither be able to experience God’s love nor be able to love one another, because they are like dead bodies - having no senses to experience love (Rev 3:1-2).
2. Peace (Greek: eirene, Latin: pax)
Peace and God are closely related. Peace is a blessing from God (Lev 26:6). God gives peace to all who keep his commandments (Is.48:18). God is in control of everything in our life; therefore, be peaceful always. We are all called towards peace. And all those who are the doers of the Word of God will have it (Col 3:15-16).
3. Joy (Greek: chara, Latin: gaudium)
God is the cause of my joy. Joy is not external. We are filled with joy within ourselves and it builds up. It also involves being content and satisfied. Repentance leads towards great joy in heaven and on earth (Lk 15:7-10,24).
4. Forgiveness (Patience or Endurance) (Greek: makrothumia, Latin: longanimitas)
This fruit of the Holy Spirit enabled Jesus and his disciples to forgive others and endure sufferings (Lk 23:34; Acts 7:55-60). Forgiveness or patience has another name and that is endurance. It enables us to forgive seventy times seven (Mt 18:21-22).
5. Kindness (Greek: chrestotes, Latin: benignitas)
It an ability to show mercy and compassion to all creation. St. Francis Assisi is a great example of one who witnessed to this fruit most effectively. God is kind to the living and to the dead (Ruth 2:20). One has to be merciful as God is merciful (Lk 6:36) for that is the Christian vocation and perfection. Those who have mercy will receive mercy from God (Mt 5:7). The one who is merciful will inherit the kingdom of God as the Samaritan in the parable of the Good Samaritan (Lk 10: 25-37) and will inherit heaven as the one in the parable of the last judgement (Mt 25:31-46).
6. Goodness (Greek: agathosune, Latin: bonitas)
It is an ability to do good and continue to do good to others, even though they might do evil against you. It is also an ability to see good in all. God is the source of all goodness. God is full of goodness (Ps 34:6). Goodness comes only from God (Ps 16:2). The Lord is good (Ps 107:1). Therefore, those who deny God can never really do unselfish good (Ps 53:3-4). God and goodness are inseparably related. God is good, all the time and God is only good.
7. Gentleness (Greek: prautes, Latin: modestia)
He who is filled with the Holy Spirit gains strength to behave gently (1Pt 3.4). Proverbs 15:4 recommends that one’s gentleness should be made known to all. Jesus is the best example of gentleness. ‘I am gentle and meek, learn from me’ (Mt 11:29) says Jesus. St. Vincent De Paul is another example of gentleness and meekness. He did not get angry or vengeful, when a lady threw a chair at his face. She got furious at St. Vincent when he denied her son an episcopal rank. Meekness is not weakness, but it is the manifestation of the spiritual strength of a person.
8. Faithfulness (Greek: pistis, Latin: fides)
Faithfulness is a divine virtue. “Even though man offends, God’s faithfulness never ceases” (Ps 89:33) and “God will not break his covenant” (Ps 89:34). This fruit of the Holy Spirit helps us to be faithful even though the other party is unfaithful. Jesus was faithful as Moses was faithful in the house of the Lord (Heb 3:2). Proverb 28:20 remarks, “The faithful man will abound with blessings.” Lk 16:10 reiterates, “one who is faithful in little is also faithful in much.” The Holy Spirit and faithfulness are closely inter-related because the one who has the Spirit of the Lord will always be faithful. “The saints who deserve the crown of life are those who were faithful until death” (Rev 2:10). This fruit helps the couples to be faithful to each other and pastors to be faithful in their ministry and to their flock.
9. Self-Control (Greek: enkrateia, Latin: continentia)
St. Paul advises, “For this reason I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you through the laying on of my hands; for God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline” (2 Tim 1:6-7). Jesus is the best example of self-control. Prophet Isiah prophesies that he would be like a sheep that is silent before its shearers (Is 53:7) and so was he when he endured sufferings and death. The story of Joseph is a classic example of self-restraint (Gen 39:7-14). This fruit is a gift from God to say no to sin and yes to God’s will.
It enables us to maintain and be moderate in speech, drinks, food, expenditure, dress, enjoyment etc. Modesty in dress helps a person to be sexually pure and helps not lead others to sexual temptations or sins.
CCC. 2345 reveals, “Chastity is a moral virtue. It is also a gift from God, a grace, a fruit of spiritual effort. The Holy Spirit enables one whom the water of baptism has regenerated to imitate the purity of Christ.”
1 Tim 6:17-19 wisely states, “As for those who in the present age are rich, command them not to be haughty, or to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but rather on God who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, generous, and ready to share, thus storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of the life that really is life.” Richness or wealth is not a sin but trusting in wealth (not in God) is a sin (Mk 10:24).
Fruits of the Holy Spirit are the manifestations of our perennial indwelling in the life of Christ; whereas the traditional gifts of the Holy Spirit (Is 11:1-2) are manifestations of the moral life of Christians which is sustained by the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Whereas these fruits of the Holy Spirit are permanent dispositions which make man docile in following the promptings of the Holy Spirit. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God . . . If children, then heirs, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ” (Rom 8:16). Let the Father God be glorified in our fruits. Therefore, let us bear much fruits, as Jesus said, “You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name” (Jn 15:16-17). All our prayers will be answered when we bear much fruits of the Holy Spirit.
In conclusion it can be said that as one who has received the Holy Spirit has to put an effort to be anointed with the Holy Spirit through use of anointed oil, participation in holy gatherings, building faith in Christ Jesus and frequent reception of Sacraments. And the anointed one has to rekindle the Holy Spirit in himself/ herself through 9 steps, in order to receive 13 blessings of the anointing. After receiving the blessings, one naturally spreads the Good News of the gospel by involving in one or more of the 20 ministries in the Catholic Church. And as we minister, we need to check our motivation and intentions so as not to turn away from the goal of serving and ministering only for the glory of God, with the help of traditional gifts, Messianic gifts, charismatic gifts and giving testimony to Christ in us through the fruits of the Holy Spirit.