(Vatican Radio) The Preacher of the Papal Household, Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap., delivered his third Advent sermon on Friday. Fr. Cantalamessa’s reflection focused on the sober intoxication of the spirit, exploring the theme as it emerged from the writings of the Fathers of the Church.
The Preacher of the Papal Household began his reflection with a distinction between physical and spiritual inebriation, noting that the first makes people come out of themselves to live below the level of reason, while the second makes people come out of themselves to live above the level of their reason.
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“How,” he asked in the second portion of his talk, “do we appropriate this ideal of sober intoxication and incarnate it in our current historical and ecclesial situation?”
He went on to say, “We need the sober intoxication of the Spirit even more than the Fathers did.”
“The world has become so averse to the gospel, so sure of itself, that only the “strong wine” of the Spirit can overcome its unbelief and draw it out of its entirely human and rationalistic sobriety, which passes itself off as “scientific objectivity.” Only spiritual weapons, says the Apostle, “have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle to the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ”.