“Return to your first Love”
“Year of Repentance” Bishop Zubik will inaugurate the year Sunday, Sept. 23, and will lead a related prayer that afternoon.”
We all have reason to join and repent.
Regarding the article today:
He is correct, so to speak. We can not let it drag us all down or hold us back from doing the work we have all been assigned by our Lord. We move forward, without allowing it to be forgotten, nor overlooked. But rather address it as we have been assigned to along with it. It moves with us, but does not tie us down. “Get behind me Satan”. Trusting in our LORD.
See: A Solemn Promise
We see the dragon. And that is what this is. The dragon is chained already through the merits and glory of our Risen Lord. It just needs to be killed by each and every one of us. It can not hurt anyone, nor us, unless we allow it to. All are called to slay the dragon. How? BE HOLY so it can no longer hurt you or others. Cast aside the notion that everyone is already holy and BECOME Holy. Go and sin no more… Overcome it, do not be overcome by it. We have a choice to be chained with it, or drag it behind in Victory in Christ.
On the beatitudes…
“Even the most intimate bonds of friendship and the closest affinity of minds cannot truly lay claim to this peace if they are not in agreement with the will of God. Alliances based on evil desires, covenants of crime and pacts of vice—all lie outside the scope of this peace. Love of the world cannot be reconciled with love of God, and the man who does not separate himself from the children of this generation cannot join the company of the sons of God.” St. Leo the Great, Pope
Today’s first reading:
Brothers and sisters:
It is widely reported that there is immorality among you,
and immorality of a kind not found even among pagans–
a man living with his father’s wife.
And you are inflated with pride.
Should you not rather have been sorrowful?
The one who did this deed should be expelled from your midst.
I, for my part, although absent in body but present in spirit,
have already, as if present,
pronounced judgment on the one who has committed this deed,
in the name of our Lord Jesus:
when you have gathered together and I am with you in spirit
with the power of the Lord Jesus,
you are to deliver this man to Satan
for the destruction of his flesh,
so that his spirit may be saved on the day of the Lord.
Your boasting is not appropriate.
Do you not know that a little yeast leavens all the dough?
Clear out the old yeast, so that you may become a fresh batch of dough,
inasmuch as you are unleavened.
For our Paschal Lamb, Christ, has been sacrificed.
Therefore, let us celebrate the feast,
not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and wickedness,
but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
I couldn’t sleep. So I found a moment, spending time with one of my favorites, on his feast day. We were walking through how St. Augustine Florida got its name. And of course, our Lord brings me His peace, in teaching me that rivals and political fighting have always been things of worldly souls.
Don Pedro Menéndez de Avilés was sent by Spain (Catholic) to protect Spanish interests as international rivalries began to play out across the Atlantic. France (Huguenots) were to be expelled. In finding this, quite interesting by the way, it brought me comfort in the way in how when we look at our past, in Truth, the more things change, the more our Lord stays the same.
“In retrospect, the decision to name the town St. Augustine seems to have been a fitting one. During its history of over 450 years, the town, like its namesake, has experienced its share of struggles. St. Augustine has been burned and looted on several occasions by pirates, hostile natives and rival Europeans. It has changed hands from country to country four times(!). During the civil rights movement, it was the location of numerous protests and counter attacks.”
And yet, remained named St. Augustine. How many attacks have we, the Church faced over the 2000 year history? How many struggles? And yet, she remains because our Lord remains.
“Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you! You were within me, but I was outside, and it was there that I searched for you. In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you. Created things kept me from you; yet if they had not been in you they would have not been at all. You called, you shouted, and you broke through my deafness. You flashed, you shone, and you dispelled my blindness. You breathed your fragrance on me; I drew in breath and now I pant for you. I have tasted you, now I hunger and thirst for more. You touched me, and I burned for your peace.”
St. Augustine of Hippo, pray for us
And now, rest.
As all the news is breaking today, some of it old, some new, a friend posted a link on my Facebook page and asked me if I had heard about it…
Yes. Lived through it not only as a rape survivor, but as seeing the fallout from when it takes place in the church. I do share in this woman’s sufferings. The hardest part is trying to explain it all to my children who knew him, who also received the sacraments from him. I didn’t and still don’t need to know the details. He was removed and our LORD remains.
The days that followed after we met our FORMER pastor, my daughters handed him a gift. It was a gift of Sacred Heart purificators and a corporal. I told him, it was a gift to my children’s Shepherd.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago, as I was helping our Sacristan, I had noticed they were still there, in the Sacristy, feet away from the Tabernacle to be used. As I ponder this gift, I come to understand that it was and is, a gift to our true Shepherd. Our Lord Jesus Christ.
Lets go deeper. My parish, my priest. No matter the location, no matter the Priest, we are all in this together, as you parish, is my parish. Your Priest is my priest. That is our Lord. “Persona Christi”. The Church is our spiritual home.
I forgave him a long time ago in my heart, but some who have never heard, don’t know that the exposing of all this, is best for all of us. Its truly a cleansing we must not be embarrassed about, but rather take and understand that as our Lord said, unless a gran of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat. Change for the better comes through death of the old self, and rebirth of the new. No fears of what will the neighbors say. But rather understanding that the neighbors too, one day will have to come to grips with it also. This exposing of abuse is GOOD NEWS.
No matter what may come, our Lord has already prevailed. Cling to Him.
When we move closer to our Lord, we do rest in Him. To rest in Him, is to grasp with both hands that fact, Jesus Christ is Lord. Do we seek Him or justice now?
The Spiritual Battle is real.
When soldiers are moving forward on the battlefield, in the heat of battle, they do not stop to cry, or condemn the fallen. They keep moving forward. The forgiveness of our Lord allows us to do this in the Spiritual realm as those who fail & fall, are left to repent as we continue to love & pray for them. Hoping they stand again and are not overcome.
Does this mean forgive and forget? In some ways yes, and no.
Please read my post: The Power Of Forgiveness.
When we choose freely not to forgive, we become entangled in the despair of the sins others have committed. along with our own. When we freely choose to forgive them, we continue on placing our hope in our Lord and can freely continue on through no matter what this world throws at us, remembering the answer to a very pivotal math problem 70 X 7.
If you look around this world with eyes of faith, you can see plainly and clearly, how the lack of forgiveness has crippled so many. So many stuck in yesterday, two weeks ago, a hundred years ago, a thousand years ago, because they forgot how to forgive one another. We see this playing out every day in the media, how so & so 20 years ago said this and that. Forgetting that so & so may not be the same person they were 20 years ago.
The lack of forgiveness is like ripping off a scab from a wound that is trying to heal. If you pick at it, it becomes infected and becomes much worse than the initial wound itself. That is not to say that the person against the sin has been committed can not do this to receive healing in the first place. If we do not know that a wound has been received, than we can not help one another to heal. For this reason, we call the Medic in the battle, and we all advance as one.
The choice is there. Do we move past it, or do we stay in it.
I forgive Cardinal McCarrick. I pray for the others who have also committed this sin and still remain hidden. I pray for souls who have falsely accused many of this crime. May our Lord cast His light in the darkness and look upon us all with His merciful gaze bringing these souls to true repentance. I forgive all who covered it up. I pray for the souls of all who have been harmed, and for the souls of all who hindered. I pray for all. I love you.
Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on us all.
‘Forgive one another, as Christ has forgiven you’ (Ephesians 4:32).
quaedam iustitiae plenitudo
Guilty or not.
That moment you see.
Banished to where? Exile. Why? To save you because I love you.
As I was reading tweets tonight, one came across from Mark Heart:
Without hesitation, I responded: “And He asks still: Where are you? Not to condemn, but to help us fix the problem.”
I therefore, found myself being pulled in to ponder the scripture of Genesis 3. As I read and pondered the text, although read it thousands of time, what jumped out to me was verse 22.
22 Then the LORD God said: See! The man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil! Now, what if he also reaches out his hand to take fruit from the tree of life, and eats of it and lives forever?
It was in that moment, the love our Lord has for us peaked in my heart. If Adam and Eve were allowed to stay, in the state they were in, having already disobeyed our Lord, and had eaten the fruit from the tree of Life, disobeying again, would it then have made them unsaveable? I am reminded of the words, I’m doing this for your own good.
You can read the same Scripture passage a 1000 times, and only in His time, are you able to see what He has been saying and doing, all along. It was after the fall of Adam and Eve, after our Lord asks, “Where are you” and before Adam & Eve are banished. He protected them from eating of the tree of Life in the fallen, out of grace state they were in. And the plan of Salvation was spoken. The plan of Salvation of our Lord Jesus Christ, as John wrote:
– “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God.” –John 1:1
Going further to verse 14:
And the Word became flesh
and made his dwelling among us,
and we saw his glory,
the glory as of the Father’s only Son,
full of grace and truth.
As I continue to ponder this and pray, 1 Corinthians 11 – Tradition of the Institution becomes even more paramount for us all, taking into consideration, we have the gifts of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, which is detrimental, to use, to repent and to use, as so not to receive in a manner unworthy, the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, which if we did so, would keep us hiding and ashamed. So when our Father asks us: “Where are you?”, He already knows where we are. He wants to know if we know where we are, as we are not where we belong. That being with Him.
Be not afraid to answer Him, do not continue to hide from Him, or to bring all your shame from sin to Him. He is there for you to help you fix it all because He loves you so.
“Go and announce the Kingdom of Heaven is close at hand”.
Yesterday, I noticed a strange looking bud on one of the cactus I have. I wasn’t aware of what species the cactus was, nor was I even curious as to its species, until something different began to happen.
How we creatures take so much for granted every day, as we become accustom to the way things are. Until something is no longer the same. Something becomes different.
I had not been able to do much with this latest bout of back and neck issues. Least of all, pay attention to my plants. This particular one, has sat on my front stoop for about 8 months. As I would walk by it, any water from my water bottle I had, I would dump in the pot, on my way up to the door after a day of work. I didn’t admire it. I didn’t spend any time caring for it. It just existed as it was. Much as our faith life does the same way.
At the very least, that occasional watering, lead to a beautiful discovery. This cactus, is a Night Blooming Cereus, Queen of The Night. The flowers are very short lived, and some only bloom for one night and are gone before the next morning. I hear this is a highly celebrated plant in some circles, and a very rare sight to see, actually open and blooming. Please see the article below:
The night progressed, and the beauty of the cactus, abounded, unnoticed by most, but I. I found myself deeply moved to share the photos of this beautiful flower on social media as it was opening. In the dark she blooms, as only our Lord can see.
This morning, she is still in bloom, for all to see.
As the story of yesterdays discovery progressed, I find myself deeply pondering this beautiful opening, in correlation with the words of St. John of the Cross, Dark Night of the Soul…
STANZAS OF THE SOUL
1. One dark night,
fired with love’s urgent longings
— ah, the sheer grace! —
I went out unseen,
my house being now all stilled.
2. In darkness, and secure,
by the secret ladder, disguised,
— ah, the sheer grace! —
in darkness and concealment,
my house being now all stilled.
3. On that glad night,
in secret, for no one saw me,
nor did I look at anything,
with no other light or guide
than the one that burned in my heart.
4. This guided me
more surely than the light of noon
to where he was awaiting me
— him I knew so well —
there in a place where no one appeared.
5. O guiding night!
O night more lovely than the dawn!
O night that has united
the Lover with his beloved,
transforming the beloved in her Lover.
6. Upon my flowering breast
which I kept wholly for him alone,
there he lay sleeping,
and I caressing him
there in a breeze from the fanning cedars.
7. When the breeze blew from the turret,
as I parted his hair,
it wounded my neck
with its gentle hand,
suspending all my senses.
8. I abandoned and forgot myself,
laying my face on my Beloved;
all things ceased; I went out from myself,
leaving my cares
forgotten among the lilies.