Sorry, but the Church does not exist to affirm us in our ideological preferences. It exists to teach us (among other things) and challenge us with the truth of the gospel. Our posture is to be one of docility to the voice of the Magisterium, not to be blogospheric popinjays who glance at the teaching, declare it nonsense, and return to our comfy ideological holes. We are not, as Catholics, to play the game of Simon Peter Says, in which the Faith is reduced to nothing but a few dogmas, while all the rest of the Church’s wisdom is to be reflexively spat out if it does not comport with our cramped tribal pieties. Only thus and not otherwise will our Catholic faith fulfill the truth Chesterton spoke when he said, “The Catholic Church is the only thing that frees a man from the degrading slavery of being a child of his age.”You can read the entire article here.
Monday, August 30, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
Today is the feast day of St Monica, the mother of St Augustine. She is the patron saint of mothers because of her persistent prayer for her husband and son to find the faith of Christ and turn away from their secular lifestyle. Through her perseverance, her prayers were answered.
I recently finished St Augustine's "Confessions" and was taken by his mothers persistent care for her son. In his early life, he could be quit cruel to her, yet she persevered in her prayers and never let go of her love for her son or for her desire for him to find Christ. One of the most touching parts of St Augustine's Confessions was his reflection upon his mothers death where he said:
"And then, little by little, there came back to me my former memories of thy handmaid: her devout life toward thee, her holy tenderness and attentiveness toward us, which had suddenly been taken away from me--and it was a solace for me to weep in thy sight, for her and for myself, about her and about myself. Thus I set free the tears which before I repressed, that they might flow at will, spreading them out as a pillow beneath my heart. And it rested on them, for thy ears were near me--not those of a man, who would have made a scornful comment about my weeping. But now in writing I confess it to thee, O Lord! Read it who will, and comment how he will, and if he finds me to have sinned in weeping for my mother for part of an hour--that mother who was for a while dead to my eyes, who had for many years wept for me that I might live in thy eyes--let him not laugh at me; but if he be a man of generous love, let him weep for my sins against thee, the Father of all the brethren of thy Christ. "
Parents' Prayer to Saint Monica
Saint Monica, patron of Christian parents, we entrust to your protection, the children whose names you can read in our hearts. Pray for them, that they may be granted strength to combat weakness, victory over temptation, guidance to resolve their doubts, and success in all their undertakings.
May they enjoy good health of mind and body, see beauty and worth in all created things, and serve the Lord with firm faith, joyful hope and enduring love.
St Monica, pray for us and our children.
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Monday, August 16, 2010
A bright future suddenly trust into the bitter reality of life.
A story about decisions we make on behalf of people we love and struggling with whether they are what is right or wrong.
The story begins:
Every photograph tells a story. Some, like these, tell two.
They are pictures of Jim and Trisha Duguay’s wedding day. A day 18 months in the planning, every detail seems perfect: Orange Gerber daisies float in glass bowls, a three-tiered cupcake wedding cake waits in a reception hall, bright pink rose petals dot the Dahlonega winery grounds. A ray of sunshine bursts through threatening mid-May skies just as the early evening ceremony begins.
Trisha, 27, a blond and vivacious administrative assistant, beams in her lace wedding dress with a fuchsia sash, her toenails painted to match. Jim, 38, a soft-spoken engineer, cradles her face as he kisses her.
But look closer, and you’ll see another story unfolding.
Read about Trish and Jim's story HERE.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Frescoe - Vatican Chapel
Today's feast is for one of the great martyrs of the Church. St Lawrence was a deacon to Pope Sixtus II in the 3rd century. During the Valerian persecution, Pope Sixtus II was arrested with several deacons (including St Lawrence) while saying Mass in a catacombs. The pope and the deacons were martyred that same day but St Lawrence was spared because the Emperor wanted him to collect all of the treasure of the Church and bring it to him. Tradition has it that St Lawrence collected all of the treasure and distributed it to the poor. Three days later, St Lawrence was arrested and executed by slowly burning him on a grill.
How many of us are ready to die for our faith? We do have modern examples of those who have attained sainthood like St Maximilian Kolbe; but we know that Christians are martyred every year, especially in countries where other faith traditions are not tolerated. As we speak, the Church in Iraq and Afghanistan are being targeted by people who want to clean the world of those who do not think like them.
For those of us who are considering ordination to the diaconate, we must be ready to give up our life for the defense of the Church. It is a question we must ask ourselves during the discernment process.
So lets pause a moment to remember those who have died for our faith and ask St Lawrence to pray for them as well as those who persecute them.