To receive Jesus is to have
everything; to give him is to give the greatest gift of all. – Pope Francis
An overview of all of Jesus’ key doctrines based on his Church’s “Catechism of the Catholic Church”
You can download the one-page easily multipliable leaflet (EML) here.
In brief: What is the Good News that Jesus revealed?
God loves us and he made us for one purpose: to live God’s life of love and supreme joy. God the Son became man, Jesus, to save us from sin and make us holy children of God who are one with Jesus.
Basis: Why do Catholics believe this to be true?
God helps us to believe, and God is Truth and Good who cannot deceive us. Our faith is reasonable: it is a historic fact that Jesus lived, worked awe-inspiring miracles, honestly claimed to be the one God, and after he was killed, was seen alive by 500, many of whom gave up their lives to witness to Jesus and his truths. Jesus built his Church on the head of his 12 Apostles, Peter, to whom he gave the powers of a King’s chief minister and teacher. Jesus committed his divine presence to his Church, so it can transmit his doctrine in its oral and scriptural Tradition. Jesus told it, “He who hears you hears me.”
CREED: We believe in God’s love
There is one God, a loving almighty Father. Through his Son, he created everything from nothing and sustains it in existence. He created angels, pure spirits and the material universe. He created humans who are spirit and matter: incarnate spirits. In an excess of love, God gave us “sanctifying grace”, a share in his divine life! The grace in one man is greater than the whole natural universe! Made in the image of God who is love, we are persons endowed with intelligence and free will who are called to live God’s life of love.
Tempted by a sinful angel, the devil, the first humans, Adam and Eve, disobeyed God. From then on, the intelligence and free will of all their descendants fell into disorder and weakened. Worst of all, we lost grace, a state called original sin. Since we are unable to create grace and save ourselves, our God who is faithful and who draws good from evil, sought to bring us back to holiness. In the end, God himself came as a man, Jesus, to speak to us of his love.
Jesus is God the Son, our Savior. His name means “God saves.” He was born of the Virgin Mary, grew up in his family, worked and “did all things well”, obeying God and authorities. After rejecting the devil’s lure to greed, self-glory and self-interest, he began to preach: “Repent, for the Kingdom of God is at hand!” As Christ, the Anointed One, he saves us as our King (Way) who guides our wills with his laws; as Prophet (Truth), who forms our intelligence to know God and his plan; and as Priest (Life) who prays and gives us his grace.
Jesus faced opposition and was killed. He freely offered his death as the one sacrifice that glorifies God, saving us from sin by acting as the New Adam who is always obedient to the Father and who gives each one total self-giving love: “Greater love than this no one has, than he who lays down his life for his friend.” Jesus rose to life on a Sunday, gaining for us the grace of being God’s children living his life of love.
After he ascended to be our glorious King in heaven, Jesus sent us his Gift, God the Holy Spirit, the third person in the Triune God, to give life to his one Church, his Body, granting it all the truth and means to sanctify men. All Church members share these holy things in common as one family. Each man will die, and Jesus will judge his love. He who dies in God’s grace and friendship will be with him in heaven; those who need to be purified will pass through purgatory. He who chose to offend God in mortal sin will suffer in hell. At the end of time, Jesus will return, raise all the dead to life and, revealing the consequences of our actions, will judge all. The saints will reign with Jesus in his eternal Kingdom where God who is Love will be all in all.
SACRAMENTS: We celebrate and receive Jesus’ life of love
To gives us grace, his own divine life of love, Jesus acts in his Church’s liturgy or worship, which revolves around the seven sacraments. A sacrament is an effective sign of grace. In Baptism, the first sacrament, Jesus acts through his priest, who pours water, to bring about the removal of original sin by giving us Jesus’ life. Thus, we are made another Christ, Christ himself: “Christ lives in me”!
The life of Jesus, the Son of God, grows in us through Jesus’ other sacraments: Confirmation (to strengthen us), Matrimony (to make family life holy), Holy Orders (to ordain priests through whom Jesus gives us the sacraments), and Anointing of the Sick (to sanctify the dying). Due to our need of God, without whom we are nothing, it is important to humbly and often receive: God’s mercy in Penance, to restore grace lost by mortal sin, and heal the soul; and Jesus himself in the Eucharist: it “makes present” his death and resurrection, the center of his life, and of a Christian’s. Our desires revolve around the Bread, our sole satisfier: Jesus who is madly in love with us.
MORALITY: We live Jesus’ life of love
A Christian lives with the dignity and joy of a child of God who loves his Father back and is Jesus’ intimate friend. Love means willing the good of the other and total self-giving. With our freedom, we have the power to act or not to act, and are responsible for our actions. By repeatedly choosing to do good shown by our conscience and allowing Jesus to love us through his law and grace, we grow in virtue and freedom. If we choose evil in sin and offend our Father, we truly say sorry: he celebrates our return and fills us with joy.
We live by Jesus’ values, the Beatitudes and his two greatest commandments: love God with all our heart, mind, strength and soul, and to love others as ourselves for God. We adore, trust and hope in him, try to know as much as we can about him; cherish and repeat his name; and rest in God, offering Mass on Sundays (1st-3rd commandments). We love our family (4th), respect everyone’s dignity (5th), reverence sexuality in chastity (6th-9th), practice justice (7th-10th), and live in the truth (8th). We are responsible for the brotherhood of all men, working for the common good and for social justice. We are merciful to the poor, those in need, in whom we meet Jesus.
APOSTOLATE: We live Jesus’ life of love by saving all men
We are one with Jesus’ sole mission of saving all men by obeying God and his Church in our daily lives. It is our duty to be king, prophet and priest for those around us. We serve, and take initiative to manage the world based on Jesus’ values; we evangelize, spread Jesus’ truths, and make disciples; and we pray, offering the sacrifice of doing all our duties excellently in union with Jesus’ Eucharist.
PRAYER: We live Jesus’ life of love by dialogue with God
Following Jesus’ example and command “pray always”, a Christian lives continually in God’s presence, speaks with Jesus as a friend and offers his daily work and activity for God’s glory. We allot time daily to be with God: to meditate on God’s Word and his Church’s teachings and to contemplate Jesus with a loving gaze. We say “I love you, thank you, I’m sorry and help us more.” As children of God, we pray the “Our Father” and go to Mary who gives us Jesus.
In support of the New Evangelization, please copy and distribute. You can download the one-page easily multipliable leaflet (EML) here.