Spirituality

The spirituality of the Lovers of the Holy Cross stems from the spirituality of Bishop Pierre Lambert de la Motte, MEP (1629-1679), the spiritual path which he had undertaken and left as a legacy for those who desire to follow the same ideal. This spirituality is a synthesis of his religious experiences and perspectives on life in the spirit. It is Christocentric, orienting one’s inner eye and heart toward Christ Crucified, centering on the salvific mystery of the Cross.

The spirituality of the Lovers of the Holy Cross consists of three dimensions: contemplation, mortification, and apostolate. While a life of prayer and apostolate are two essential characteristics of any religious, it is the practice of mortification that distinguishes the Lovers of the Holy Cross from the rest.

  1. Prayer
    • The primacy of prayer in religious life
    • Bishop Lambert – exemplar of prayer life
    • Prayer dimension in the spirituality of the Lovers of the Holy CrossTeachings of the Church
  2. Mortification
    • Anthropological meaning of mortification
    • Spirit of mortification of Bishop Lambert
    • Mortification – unique dimension of the spirituality of the Lovers of the Holy Cross
    • Practicing mortification in the new era
  3. Apostolate
    • From experience to mission
    • Spirit of apostolate of Bishop Lambert
    • Commitment of the Lovers of the Holy Cross to their mission

Charism

Charism is a unique gift of the Holy Spirit given only to an individual or a group, and not to others. Charism consists of these aspects: originating from God, personal and unique, and serving the common good and the ministry of the Church.

For a religious congregation, the Founder or Foundress is the direct recipient of the charism, and s/he, in turn, passes it on to other members. “[E]ach of your Founders, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit promised by Christ to the Church, was a man who possessed a particular charism. Christ had in him an exceptional ‘instrument’ for his work of salvation, which especially in this way is perpetuated in the history of the human family. The Church has gradually assumed these charisms, evaluated them and, when she found them authentic, thanked the Lord for them and tried to ‘put them in a safe place’ in the life of the community, so that they could always yield fruit.” (Address of His Holiness John Paull II to the Superiors General of Men’s Religious Orders, no. 1)

Particularly for the Lovers of the Holy Cross, the name itself can be seen as a “charism,” a gift, a calling that God has reserved for its members. Living this charism is the means for the Lovers of the Holy Cross to embody their sui generis call among the various charisms within the Church. Thus, the charism can be concisely understood and summarized as follows: to love Christ Crucified and participate in His salvific mission. More specifically, the charism is manifested in the purpose and mission of the congregation:

  1. To strive for an understanding, love, and dedication to Christ Crucified as completely as possible
  2. To continue Christ’s salvific mission:
    • Through intercession, praying for the conversion of Christians who have gone astray, and for non-Christians to believe in God
    • By witnessing and serving in the areas of faith, morality, education, social service and health care, with priority given to women