The earth is the LORD’s and all it holds, the world and those who dwell in it. – Psalm 24
O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of mercy for us, I trust in You!
Blessed Independence Day
When our Lord said He would send us an Advocate, one must first ask, what is an Advocate?
a person who publicly supports or recommends a particular cause or policy.
If I was a criminal, which we all truly are in the spiritual sense, as we are all guilty sinners, I am granted the right to an Attorney. When our Lord told us He would send an Advocate, this is in fact the Holy Spirit. What does this mean to us? He is here to guide, and help us in the many internal and external struggles we face, to stay on the right path and not to be lead astray by what we are lacking. If I were to represent myself in a court of law, without ANY knowledge or understanding of the Law, where would I be sent for many years by the Judge who knows all? If I chose to represent myself, am I not doing what our Lord told us not to do? Would I therefore be pleading “Innocent” when in fact I am guilty? Would I look to be insane by the Judge and then would I not actually BE insane by NOT taking the advise and direction of the Advocate our Lord has appointed to me?
The very moment we do something wrong, we know it to be wrong, because our “conscious” tells us it is wrong. In the deep chambers of this conscious, resides the Advocate. As me act on wrong decision and sin, we are convicted. This is a moment of grace. A moment to be CONVERTED. A moment in which our stone hearts, can be changed to flesh. When we continue on that wrong path, we are walking away from the Advocate there to help, and we begin to build a mountain of guilt. What is a soul to do with guilt? How does one get rid of it? We can try to repress or suppress it, but over years, it becomes something that consumes and rots us from the inside out. By the time it manifests externally, which mind you, does not take very long as others can see guilt a mile away, even when we choose not to and think we have wonderfully hidden it, it becomes a burden that eats away at our relations with others through depression, anxiety and anger. Left very long or not very long at all, depending on the sensitivity of the soul, it shows itself as mania, hysteria, psychosis, and many times takes us into suicide and or murder.
How then is a soul to rid ones self of its own guilt? By embracing the guilt. Embracing it and you take it to the dumpster and walk away from it. If I am appointed an Attorney for a trial, am I not to tell my Attorney everything that has taken place to ensure a “Light” sentence? Our Lord knows our guilt. No one gets away with murder. No one gets away with anything. Sin is sin and the wages of all sin is death. Guilt and holding on to the guilt of our sins, is that millstone around our necks. How is that millstone shattered? By taking the Counsel that has been appointed to us by our Lord. Do everything He tells you. Beginning with a great Confession. The act of confessing, is the beginning of cleaning up the guilt we have accumulated or if you would hoarding guilt, for years and years. You know that our Lord has told us that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. When our interiors are packed with sin and guilt, it makes it very difficult to find anything, let alone that room where the Advocate is located. Confessing our sins and turning away from them, is how we clean up that interior in order to find that hidden room under the exorbitant amount of guilt we buried Him under.
What to do while we are being convicted? Silence, contemplation and prayer. Have you ever been told to shut up and listen for your own good? This is the time to do just that. Speak when He directs you to. Say what He is advising you to say. Act, as He is directing you to act. He is here to help you. It is mercy He seeks for you. Even when the worst most horrific things about you are being revealed. The horror of it all, is no horror to Him who already knows. The horror of it all, is to YOU who thought you had hidden it and thought it would just all go away. Like a parent who catches their child with their hand in the cookie jar, you are so busted. And He still loves you. Like a rat in a trap, squirming to be released, in everything you have ever done. And He loves all His creatures. The Advocate will NOT release you. The question remains, “Do you love me?”.
The Advocate will advise you to plead GUILTY and not to continue in the guilt, but to keep clean, live a model life until your court case is heard. His advice is always to REPENT and believe in the Gospel. Not yourself. It is the Judge who will do the releasing and sentencing, and we hope it might just be for time served, if you begin to serve the sentence before you stand in front of the Judge.
Welcome the Advocate with open arms. Don’t do what you know is not good. Do not push Him away. Pray for Him to come to you, and help you to make it through it all.
Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth. O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, Through Christ Our Lord, Amen.
Here is a wonderful video by Venerable Bishop Fulton John Sheen.
What does it mean to examine something but to look deep and see if there is something wrong and if there is, a cure is available.
As I contemplate this Holy Thursday, the words of the disciples come to my heart. The beginning of the examination of conscious. After the fact of the sin, the harm we cause, can not be changed, but is forgiven. Driving us, not to commit that harm ever again on another.
Is it I, Lord? And another asked, is it I Lord? Is it I Lord? Humility asks if I have caused harm and seeks to rectify it. Pride does not. All but one, returned to our Lord, to ask pardon for having inflicted harm on Him. One, did not and took the Bread of Life into his own hands. Not turning back to Christ, but away from Him.
All of us have betrayed our Lord . All of us. All of us have. Its called sin. The difference is, we are still here and have a choice to turn back like the rest of the twelve did, through The Sacrament of Reconciliation, thus enabling us to receive our Lord again, in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
After this, and the leaving of Judas, we find our Lord already washing the feet of those who would turn back to Him. Proving again, He loved us first. The question that remains to be answered? Do you love Him?
Before the feast of Passover, Jesus knew that his hour had come
to pass from this world to the Father.
He loved his own in the world and he loved them to the end.
The devil had already induced Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot, to hand him over.
So, during supper,
fully aware that the Father had put everything into his power
and that he had come from God and was returning to God,
he rose from supper and took off his outer garments.
He took a towel and tied it around his waist.
Then he poured water into a basin
and began to wash the disciples’ feet and dry them with the towel around his waist.
As I sit and pray during this Palm Sunday at Holy Mass, after receiving our Lord, my mind turned to the Cup of Salvation.
What exactly is the Cup of Salvation, I pondered.
As I sat in prayer, my heart grabbed on to Life in Christ. The Cup of Salvation being the Cup of Life given to the only begotten Son. His Life! As I pondered more, the cup of wrath came to my thoughts. Wrath being what comes to us, when we do not live in Christ. When we do our own will. When we disregard the other. This came, as we have free will, with a choice to make. Wrath? Or Salvation?
I pondered more deeply, how wrath has been my way (sinfulness) in this world without our Lord, and how Salvation is what we work on as we continue to drink His cup. As we take on His Life, passing over our own, therefore with His joy and His peace, the wrath we deserve, has already been paid.
Thank you Lord, I love You too.
As I am pondering this coming Sunday’s Gospel in Lectio Divina: ” “Master, it is good for us to be here!” And they do not want to get off the mountain any more! When it is question of the cross, whether on the Mount of the Transfiguration or on the Mount of Olives (Lk 22:45), they sleep! They prefer the glory to the cross! ” – I have been struggling with the subject of allowing children of same sex couples seeking admittance into Catholic schools, from the moment I first heard it.
First, let me say that the very fact these children have been robbed of the natural right to a home with their biological mother and a father, is the first thing that concerned me. If parenting didn’t require the attributes of both man and woman, natural creation would in fact be very different. Each of us, has that natural right of God at the moment of conception. When our natural rights are stripped away, its always due to the selfishness of others, who seek to legitimize their own “idea” of Love and compassion, with regard for legitimizing their own sin to make it look more acceptable not only to themselves, but to others.
The sin of the parents, can not be held against the child. Someone brought up the point of how others, heterosexual parents and single parents are allowed to place their children in Catholic Schools. I would like to address one point here again which comes to mind regarding same sex parents: The sin of the parents, can not be held against the child.
I want to add to the discussion, why I have struggled with this. Someone made a point in saying it, (Allowing children of same sex marriages into Catholic Schools) would drive souls away from sending their children to Catholic School. What no one is addressing is the amount of children from Practicing Catholics who are Home schooled now, due to the problems we already have in our Catholic Schools. That problem being over population of Non-Practicing Catholics who falsely believe its the schools job to teach the faith. Its a false hope many have. Catholic home schooling is growing in large numbers. Very pious Catholic family’s who either can not afford Catholic Education, or Catholic family’s who have already seen, what can and has taken place in Catholic Schools, in which parents do not practice the faith, and their children not living the faith, becoming a “stumbling block” for placing their children into the system, which peer pressure becomes an added cross placed into the “nest” and seriously threatens the faith of the entire family.
There is a large group here in San Diego who would rather teach their own children and socialize with the Home School’s family’s then to place their children into the Catholic School system. Mainly due to the issues all mentioned here. For the LONGEST time, I felt a need to make sure my children, although we are completely broke, attend Catholic School. Its only now that my daughter is in 8th grade and about to graduate, that I have come to find out, NONE of her close friends attend Mass every Sunday nor do they regularly receive the sacraments, nor are even trying to live the Catholic Faith. I started to notice how my daughter didn’t want to join the Catholic Youth Group, because her friends were not joining. Not wanting to hang out with any of the clubs that often do community service, because her close friends were not. I understand it now, why the home school groups are a tight nit group. Its a matter of protecting the “Nest”. What happened or is happening with my daughter? We can always chalk it up to peer pressure, but when the peer pressure is coming from the Catholic School to NOT participate in the faith, its already a failed system in which many are trying to figure out this exact question. The Catholic School is not the teacher of the faith. Parents are responsible for teaching the faith to their children and in fact, living it with them. Think of our faith in regards to it being like a different language. If you seek to learn a new language, but no one at home speaks this language, what becomes of all you are learning? What becomes of the soul who does not practice, does not put it to use? It is tossed aside and forgotten. A Catholic School is ONLY as good as the parents living the faith within it. The Catholic School is there to REINFORCE the faith of the Church.
Another question that comes up is why would a same sex parent even want to place a child they have taken in, into a Catholic School that does not teach what they believe? Is it for attention? Is it spite? Is it to prove a point? Is it because they truly seek to have the child live a faith filled life in which they themselves are struggling with? Here again is the issue of assuming the Catholic School is there to teach the children the faith. Its not. Again, the Catholic School is there to reinforce the faith of the Church. The children and the parents are a Pastoral issue. No different than nonpracticing Catholics who have placed themselves out of communion.
Why have I personally been struggling with this, when its not even an issue with me? Because I love. Not only do my sins effect me, but they effect everyone, not just who I am around, but everyone. Although the sin may be forgiven, the residual effects of that sin can not be taken away. When we sin, it is against our Lord and every soul in Christ.
Why have I been struggling at all? Because I have become “comfortable” with the suffering I already have. Like St. Peter at the Transfiguration, I wanted to stay there in “my comfort” with the Glorious Messiah, and not continue on back down the mountain to finish this journey with the Servant Messiah. How can I not allow more suffering, if it is for the glory of our Lord? If my suffering is joined to our Lord’s, it is in fact no longer my suffering. My suffering is not even mine, but His, and to this I my heart demands that I let our Lord lead the way and continue on to the cross with Him. This is the struggle I believe we all face, in regards to something “different” entering in our “normal” lives. The more we struggle with it, the more painful it becomes as we fight between God’s will and our will. “My Father, if it is not possible that this cup pass without my drinking it, your will be done!”. My wants for others to be holy and great Catholics, living the faith daily, placing our Lord first, loving and serving Him, although good, does not mean that others want it. “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”
If our faith is placed in our Lord, we can not be overcome by the world. Mercy is the answer, as the Son of Justice will come to us all. To not receive a child in His name, (anti-life- not open to receive another life, the life of another who is sick with sin and suffering) would not benefit any of us. And we would simply be clinging to our fears of sin, and our fears of “sinners”, over our fear of the Lord. This does not mean we skew the Truth as we take on those who do not Believe. We adhere to the Truth of our Lord, teaching as it is, Truth, in love and mercy, allowing others to use their free will to accept it, or reject it. Just my two cents. I surrender to our Lord. His will be done.
If you want to know what is going on, why there is SO much visible evil today, the answer to your question to what is going on is very simple.
Grace. God’s grace to see things as they are, to repent and to run back to Him. That is what is happening – “Where sin increased, grace overflowed all the more”
Use this time wisely. Get things in order. Get back on His path. Make a change for the better. For the good.
Is what I am saying online, or offline, being said because I LOVE?
Is what I am doing online, or offline, being done because I LOVE?
Wonderful assessment by Bishop Robert Barron on the current situation today (Covington Catholic) with jumping to conclusions, that were never there.
Love one another, as I have loved you.
If you are tempted to be sucked into it all, cry out:
Lord? I forgive them. And I pray for them. I do love them, because You loved us first. Have mercy on us all. <– BEST way to begin the healing. Let Him in. Humility prevails.
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”