330 • Part III. Christian Morality: The Faith Lived
for not only does God give us the moral law that leads us to salva-
tion, but through grace we receive divine assistance to follow it. We
should always take heart from the words Our Lord spoke to St. Paul:
“My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness”
(2 Cor 12:9).
The Church as Mother and Teacher
God assists us in living the moral life through the Church, who is our
mother and teacher. The faith of the Church is found in its Creed and in
its ordinary teaching, as articulated by its shepherds, the pope, and the
bishops in communion with him.
Jesus said to the Apostles, “Whoever listens to you listens to me” (Lk
10:16). In the Church, when we deal with matters of faith and morals,
the authoritative voice of Christ is exercised by the pope and bishops,
successors of Peter and the Apostles who form the Magisterium. They
are guided by the Holy Spirit, who abides with the Church to lead us
into all truth.
The Church hears the perennial questions that each person asks
at some point: “How shall I live?” “What values or principles shall I
accept?” “What norms shall I make my own?” “What gives meaning to
my life?” To answer questions such as these, we turn to a wise teacher.
Christ is the ultimate teacher, and he continues to be heard in and
through the Church today. The
notes that “the
of the Pastors of the Church
in moral matters is ordinarily exercised in
catechesis and preaching, with the help of the works of theologians and
spiritual authors” (CCC, no. 2033). In the task of teaching and applying
the vision and practice of Christian morality, the Church relies on the
dedication of pastors and the studies of theologians, as well as the con-
tributions of all people of goodwill (cf. CCC, no. 2038).
The response based on faith that Catholics must give to the
Church’s teaching authority—the Magisterium—extends also to
The Church, the “pillar and bulwark of the truth,” “has received
this solemn command of Christ from the apostles to announce