The Bishop of Orihuela-Alicante (Spain), Msgr. José Ignacio Munilla, recalled that in the “Our Father” prayer, Christians ask to sanctify the name of God, and explained what this phrase means and how we can reflect his holiness in life everyday.
Monsignor Munilla reflects on and explains in a simple way topics contained in the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, through his YouTube channel “In you I trust”. On this occasion, the Prelate commented on number 589 of the Compendium of the Catechism, which is entitled: How is the Name of God sanctified in us and in the world?
“To sanctify the Name of God, which ‘calls us to holiness’, is to wish that the baptismal consecration vivifies our whole life. Likewise, it is to ask that, with our lives and our prayers, the Name of God be known and blessed by all men”, states the Catechism.
Bishop Munilla recalled that “this is the second of the points dedicated to the first” of the seven petitions to God the Father that we pray in the Our Father prayer, which begins with the phrase: “Our Father, Hallowed be your name.”
The Prelate explained that sanctifying the name of God is “make the holiness of God reflect” in “all our lives” following the example of the saints. “A saint is one who what he does is reveal the holiness of God and make it known in the world,” he said.
In this sense, he warned that “we cannot think that our spiritual life” is a “chapter” or a part “within our life”, as if there were different chapters in our life: work, family, leisure, and then the spiritual. “This is a wrong understanding,” he stated.
On the contrary, “spiritual life is the whole of life”, since “there is no spiritual life and profane life”, but “it is the only life we have, but totally impregnated with the experience of the spirit that sanctifies everything” .
Bishop Munilla stressed that “this is key, because otherwise we will not have a unity of life, but rather closed departments with many contradictions within us, in one aspect of our life and in another.”
For this reason, “baptismal consecration is called to impregnate everything, to soak everything, to unify them, to integrate them, manifesting the holiness and goodness of God,” he said.
In this regard, the Prelate recalled Saint Cyprian, who said that Christians, with the help of prayer, must persevere so that holiness remains.
“Who could sanctify God, since He sanctifies? Inspired by this word: ‘Be holy, because I am holy’, we ask that, sanctified by Baptism, we persevere in what we have begun to do”, said the saint.
Bishop Munilla explained that the verb “remain” is “especially underlined in the Gospel of Saint John”, which indicates that Jesus said: “Remain in me, as I remain in you” and means “to be fully impregnated”.
For this reason, “making the holiness of God reflect” implies that our life, which refers to our behavior and works; and our prayer, which is “our most direct relationship with the Lord,” are integrated, he noted.
The Prelate quoted the words of Saint Peter Chrysologus, who warned that everyone who lives badly is “blaspheming” and pointed out that it is not about the words that one says, “but rather that your own life is blasphemous.”
“We ask that this name of God be sanctified in us by our lives, because if we live well, the divine name is blessed, but if we live badly, it is blasphemed. ‘The name of God for your sake is blasphemed by the nations.’ Therefore, we pray to deserve to have in our souls as much holiness as holy is the name of the Lord of Our God,” he said.
“If I have been consecrated Christian and for my life I am contradicting that consecration, I am blaspheming. Impressive is this, what a responsibility that, for my life, for my sin, I may be blaspheming God and may be a source of scandal, ”he reflected.
Monsignor Munilla also said that the saint reminded us that Christians must sanctify ourselves, but also pray for others to sanctify themselves.