The Venerable Maria Celeste Crostarosa was born on this day in Naples, Italy in the year 1696 - the same year and same city as St. Alphonsus de Liguori who was to become her friend and support her mystical inspiration to found a new contemplative order 1730. At the request of a spiritual director, she wrote her autobiography and later on recorded her mystical colloquies with Jesus, her chapel talks to her monastic community in Foggia, and her poems. The core of her inspiration is centered upon the mysteries of the Incarnation and Redemption. The Redemptoristine charism flows from the ancient theology first expressed by St. Athanasius, "God became man that man might become God." Just as Jesus became human in cooperation with the Father's loving plan for all creation, by our baptism into the life of Jesus we are to become "living memories" of Jesus Christ. This is not a mere imitation but a participation so that Jesus is living and active in us in the world right now. A very tall order!
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