The Holy Spirit dwells not only in the Church, preserving her from error, but also in the soul of every Christian who is in the grace of Christ. In the individual soul the Holy Spirit inspires love for God and the desire of Christian virtue, and in that sense He is called the Sanctifier of the soul. But since God cannot contradict Himself, the Holy Spirit never inspires any individual in a way at variance with the teaching and discipline of the Church established and guaranteed by Christ And since man can easily deceive himself or still more easily be deceived by Satan who can pretend to be an angel of light, the Church applies certain tests to see whether a given influence be really of the Holy Spirit. Thus St. John warns us, “Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits if they be of God.” 1 Jn., IV., 1. What are the tests? Firstly, negative. Is the notion I think inspired in any way at variance with the doctrine of the Catholic Church? Since it is already certain that the Holy Spirit guides the Church and that He cannot contradict Himself, it is certain that any ideas conflicting with Catholic teaching and discipline cannot be attributed to the Holy Spirit. Secondly, and granted this negative test, there is a positive test Does the supposed inspiration incline the recipient to sane conduct rather than to some form of religious mania? Does it tend to foster humility rather than pride; obedience rather than self-will; purity, charity, and holiness? No impulse can be accepted as being of the Holy Spirit unless it can pass all these tests.
Radio Replies Volume 1 by Rev. Dr. Leslie Rumble MSC and Rev. Charles Mortimer Carty