From Isaac Hecker CSP:
“It is about His Son, on the human level he was born of David’s stock but on the level of the Spirit – the Holy Spirit, he was declared Son of God in a mighty act by which he rose from the dead.”
(Paul to the Romans 1:2)
God is the author of the natural order. His visible world we call “nature.” It is truly the work of God and filled with the riches of His wisdom, his charity and his mercy. All created things were made by Him and serve Him. His hand drew the sublimist lessons from the land, its tilling and its harvest. It therefore follows that religion finds its support in all things made by God. The heavens and the earth declare the glory of God. The Church incorporates nature into her worship of God
God is no less the author the human heart. He created us in his own image and likeness and therefore we are the most complete visible symbol of God. Everything in mankind represents a divine principle. God can become man and man can become like God without exaggeration or alteration. This took place in the Incarnation. Christ is wholly God and completely man. God is the author of nature and of man and in God we live and move and have our being. The Apostle Paul was fully alive to this fact.
“Paul stood before the Council and he said, ‘I have lived all my life and still live today with a perfectly clear conscience before God’.” (Acts 23:1)
The supernatural builds on nature; this is a basic element of Servant of God Isaac Hecker’s spirituality. Truth builds on truth and natural examples that are created by God provide a window in which we see through to the supernatural – that is the experience of grace at work in the world. This is also at the heart of the preaching of Saint Paul the Apostle. The perfect fusion, the meeting place between the natural and the supernatural is the Incarnation. Jesus born of a virgin is the Son of God, both human and divine. “Christ is wholly God and completely man.” In turn everything in mankind represents a divine principle. God became man out of love for us and now we can become like God.
Paulist Father Paul Robichaud CSP is Historian of the Paulist Fathers and Postulator of the Cause of Father Hecker. His office is located at the Hecker Center in Washington D.C.