It is likely you may have heard in the church that it is important to strengthen our spiritual life. Many people automatically make a division between everyday life and spiritual life as if they were two opposite things when they hear this. There is nothing further from reality to think that spiritual life is separated from the life we live every day. Our spiritual life, our relationship with God, is deeply connected with our daily life. God acts in our life and in our reality. God offers us specific means through which we can have a relationship with Him according to our own personality and our reality so we can live our life as He asks us to live.
To live a spirituality means to live a relationship with God tailored to me. It is almost as if we were saying that God is so interested in having a relationship with us that He adapts to our reality. He relates to us in the way we can understand.
In this context, a spirituality is like a path that leads us to God. There are several ways to reach God like the saying, "all roads lead to Rome.” All roads lead us to Him, as long as we know and want to reach Him. There are several spiritualities, and if the different spiritualities are paths that lead us to Him, that means that we have the opportunity to find what the path that will be better for me. In the history of the church there have been great saints who have enriched the church with these spiritualities, that is, with those ways to reach God. A spirituality consists of religious practices that we do and that help us to live our faith. Within these great spiritualities we have the Benedictine spirituality (of Saint Benedict), the Jesuit (of Saint Ignatius of Loyola), the Franciscan (of Saint Francis of Assisi), the Dominican (of Santo Domingo de Guzmán), the Salesian (of Saint Francisco de Sales and Don Bosco), the Carmelite (of Saint Teresa of Avila and Saint John of the Cross), the Spirituality of the Cross (of the future Blessed Conception Cabrera), etc.
Each of these spiritualities has a concrete feature of the life of Christ through which he is followed. That is, a characteristic from the person of Christ is lived; not exclusively, but that aspect is more emphasized. For example, in Franciscan spirituality the aspect of poverty is highlighted as the way to follow Jesus. In fact, this is the spiritual feature of the Papacy of the Holy Father Pope Francisco. Hence the name he chose for himself.
In the future I will be writing in this space about each of these spiritualities and their main characteristics. I hope that with this great variety of ways to reach God, you can discover yours. The one that is going to be more pleasant to reach God.
Rev. Manuel Rosiles, MSpS