Way of Redemptorists
As we Australian and New Zealand Redemptorists move around our own countries and various parts of South East Asia, people speak frankly with us. They sometimes ask us questions about who we are, and sometimes they give us feedback.
The questions make us think and help us to be conscious of why we do what we do. The feedback gives us a clearer understanding of who we are and how it comes through in our work. Mostly, the feedback is uplifting and fills us with gratitude for the vocation we have together in the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer. It is also through the feedback that God continues to call us.
- “Why did you become a Redemptorist?”
- “Redemptorists are different. How is it that you are different?”
- “What makes you Redemptorists tick?”
Feedback may include:
- “When you Redemptorists speak it is like you are speaking personally just to me.”
- “When we listen to you Redemptorists we begin to understand what we have always known.”
- “You Redemptorists believe in us; you give us hope.”
- “The Redemptorists allowed us to see for the first time how life, faith, justice are all part of a whole.”
- “Redemptorists are so relaxed; you make us feel at ease.”
- “Even when you are showing us something difficult, Redemptorists make it sound so simple.”
Questions and statements like these are offered to lay apostles, diocesan priests and other groups and congregations too. The issues they raise are not exclusively Redemptorist. What is notably Redemptorist is the way we try to respond to them.
In each of the questions and statements above, you will have noticed a presumed bond. There is connection; there is relationship. To understand that point is to understand the most fundamental element of the Redemptorist way of life. It is this: Redemptorists meet their God and know their God most of all in our Gospel relationships with the people.
When Redemptorists hear and see Christ in the poor and abandoned, and they in turn see Christ in us, our hearts sing. That is our prayer; therein is the message we preach.
Strong in faith, rejoicing in hope, burning with charity, on fire with zeal, in humility of heart and persevering in prayer, Redemptorists, as apostolic men and genuine disciples of St Alphonsus follow Christ the Redeemer with hearts full of joy; denying themselves and always ready to undertake what is demanding, they share in the mystery of Christ and proclaim it in Gospel simplicity of life and language, that they may bring to people plentiful redemption.- Constitution of the Redemptorists, No. 20
Redemptorist life springs from the heart of the risen Christ, the Most Holy Redeemer. Christ the Includer is gathering up all of humanity into the fullness of life, a new way of being, and a justice born of God. By grace, Redemptorists are a community caught up fully in this marvellous action. If you are called to it, you cannot help but run with it. Such is the gift!
The whole perfection of the human person and all holiness consists in loving Jesus Christ, and in doing his will. He is our Redeemer and the source of all our good.- St Alfonso de Liguori