Tag Archives: Repentance

Our Lady Of Mount Carmel Novena Day 2

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Today is day two of the novena to our Lady of Mount Carmel. In today’s reflection, we find that there are many flowers in the Garden of Carmel.

I am not one to assume my own flower, as I would rather that our Lord or Lady would designate that for me, and so, yesterday I had a soul contact me via direct message on social media, with an obvious scam. This person demanded that I send an email to their contact person, so I could claim my huge prize winnings. When this is done, the scammer obtains your entire contact list and attempts this scam on more souls.

I reported this person, as it was a scam that targets the deaf and hard of hearing. See here: Deceiving the Deaf

I shared their information with others, with a warning about this scam, so others would not be deceived. As I took it to prayer yesterday, I pondered the Venus Fly Trap. The Venus flytrap is a flowering plant best known for its carnivorous eating habits. It seems to get a bad rap as an aggressive little plant, but actually eats all the pests that danger others and protects the rest of the garden. It doesn’t chase after any of its meals but waits patiently for them to come to it. In reflecting on this little plant, I thought about this in regards to the spiritual life. The fly is an obvious symbol of sin and evil. When we repent, sin still comes to us, but it goes no further if we do not act upon it. Rather, we, like the little fly trap, consume it, stop it from going any further, and keep on doing the will of God.

During this Novena to our Lady of Mount Carmel, I pray we all stop the evil that comes to us daily, cloaked in the allurement of worldly pleasures, seeing them for what they are, hearing the call of our Lord and stop them dead in their tracks, giving the glory to our Lord.

For the entire Day Two reflection and prayer, please click HERE

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Eternal Life Begins Now

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We have many good lessons to learn, through this tragic event…

Sunday morning, my youngest daughter came to me in tears, showing me her iPad and asking me if it was true! She really took me by surprise and was yelling at me to tell her. I asked her a few times before looking down, what? What? Is what true?  She proceed to walk to my husband and show him and he picked up the TV remote, changed the channel and yes. It was true. Kobe Bryant was killed that morning in a horrific helicopter crash. My daughter was inconsolable. I held her as she cried, and asked her if she wanted to pray for him and we did together. My daughter is extremely sensitive when news breaks of anyone’s death.

She walked into her room sobbing while my husband, who happens to be an air traffic controller, and myself, sat in shock watching the news unfold. Later that day, hearing Kobe and his daughter attended Holy Mass, brought us all great comfort. We attended the evening Mass that day, and the Priest added Kobe and Gianna, his 13 year old daughter, along with all who had died in that horrific crash, in the prayers of the faithful. My daughter looked at me during that moment and smiled. She was at peace again.

First spiritual lesson to learn. I can not stress the importance of receiving our Lord in the Sacraments before we die. We never know when our Lord is going to take us home. If we become sick, or if we have sick loved ones, who are Catholic, PLEASE, before they slip into a condition to where they can not longer receive our Lord in the Eucharist, call a Priest to administer the Sacraments! There is a great post here on this subject: A Guide to the Last Rites May take this time for granted and wait until the loved one has already died, or is in a vegetative state. Please, the sooner the better that they may take our Lord with them on that final journey.

Getting back to the news of Kobe.  I must admit, I am not a fan of basketball. Not even a fan as I was living in Chicago, when the Bulls took the Championship five times with Michael Jordan and the rest of the crew. What I am a huge fan of, is repenting sinners. Another spiritual lessons to learn in this, is repentance. In learning more about Kobe and his charities, his regular attendance of Holy Mass and even attending daily Mass, my heart leaped knowing he sure looked like a repenting soul to me. At that point in anyone’s life, the moment of repentance, turning back to our Lord, what we ONCE WERE, is no longer who we are at this moment. It’s gone, as we allow our Lord to build us into what He created us to be. Letting go of what we want to be, accepting the good and the bad. What our Lord has already forgiven, can no longer be held against us. The sin is gone, although the residual effect of the sin may remain. Its not easy to find souls in this society we are exiles in, willing to forgive us, as our Lord has. Holding on to His is forgiveness through the sacrament of reconciliation, hearing the words “I absolve you”, is key to moving through all society holds against the repenting soul, and not allowing the world to take away the joy of being forgiven,  getting that second chance in life in Christ to do what is right and just again.  Society often holds on to the bitterness, unable to move past others sins, because it lacks the ability to forgive and heal, although society (the world) could never be burdened with thinking of its own sins first.

It no longer mattered to me what he may have done, but my hope for him and all was what may be. His continuing the journey on into eternal life with our Lord.

Another spiritual lesson to be learned, is not constantly looking at the ugliness of one another, and finding the good in each soul.  Anyone can see the dirt in their neighbor, be the one who finds the gold. We must remember that what we hold against our neighbors, will be held also against us. We are called to forgive as we have been forgiven. We are called to see the good in others, and not continually focus on the bad. A repenting soul, knows their own sins and do not need others to help them remember them, especially when they have already been forgiven.  I’m not saying Kobe is a Saint, although I hope he is, as that is a judgement left to our Lord. What I am saying is he definitely was working on his salvation, while he was still here. That is another key to our salvation. We live the faith now, repent now, so not to regret later. Eternal life begins in this life. CS Lewis said:  ‘Die before you die, there is no chance after.’

I pray for everyone, during this tragedy, to remember the words our Lord spoke, directly after teaching us how to pray:

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If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions.

I hope others see how important it is to forgive as we ourselves have been forgiven.

I pray for the souls of all who have lost their lives in this horrific tragedy, and I also hope that more souls, still here, can see the joy of repentance and forgiveness and begin eternal life, now. Lord have mercy on us all.

Prayer for The Eternal Rest

Eternal rest grant unto them,

O Lord, and let perpetual light

shine upon them. May the souls

of all the faithful departed, through

the mercy of God, rest in peace.

Amen

 

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The Dryness Of Lent

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It used to be the moment I woke, the awareness of our Lord’s presence abounded. Immediately I would speak to Him in prayer. I had a smile always on my face. It was the so wonderful “honeymoon” of faith. Joy filled my heart, and just before waking, I could hear His voice calling me to wake.

Lately, I seem to be losing the awareness and my thoughts have become rather distorted with “worldly” things and souls. I have been struggling upon waking for the past few weeks, and have noticed the strange distractions of other things, taking the place of Him. I’m not sure why, but I am aware of this taking place and I am fighting it. I can see it for what it is, and I begin to pray the moment the distractions try to overpower me. Jesus, I trust in You, Lord have mercy on me. The awareness is not completely gone, but more like something is trying to come between us to take my attention. Imagine being on a date, and someone coming up to your table and interrupting the private conversation. That is how I can see this distraction.

Earlier tonight, I had posted this with a prayer request for me, as I see my struggle and also know it to be pure grace to see it.

I took my girls out for ice cream tonight. On the way home, there was so much water on the street but it was as if someone was driving in front of me while dumping out a pitcher of water. It soaked the entire lane we were in and it had made its own river flowing onto the freeway. This huge “river” went from the ice cream shop parking lot where we had been, on to the freeway where we needed to go, flowed through and down the exit ramp to our street, through an intersection, where we made a left hand turn and up to our street.  It was a HUGE water truck letting out water as it went and we were only a minute or so following behind it.

Just after Evening prayers, our Lord reminded me of that spiritual dryness I had asked for prayers about and I laughed with Him.

“It is the LORD who goes before you; he will be with you and will never fail you or forsake you. So do not fear or be dismayed” Deuteronomy 31:8

It’s so good to hear His voice. Like that water truck, spraying, He waters my soul and dismay is washed away.

Lord be with us, as we are trying to be with You this lent. That we may come to rise with You on the third day.

 

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Rock Stars

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As I was sitting with our Lord in Adoration, I found myself praying for all the “Rock Stars” I idolized as a kid. Most of whom are no longer with us now. I’m not sure why this all came up in Adoration as I simply wanted to spend time with our Lord. But the subject of false idols has been heavy on me lately, in regards to how much so many place their trust on and in the worlds “stars”, be in musical, acting, political etc, rather than on how much in need they are also, as we all are, of healing, mercy and our Lord.

False idols are made from the same clay as you & I. Glits & glam is an illusion. Scratch the surface, and you see the same faults, flaws, deep yearnings and misdeeds (sins) as everyone else. What makes the difference between a false idol and a model, is when we choose the fill the void we have, with our Lord and not money, drugs, women, men, sex nor any lesser creature or creation. Every one of us, is a broken pot, seeking to be placed back together, in need of our Creator to do so.

Our Lord is the Author of all creation. The gifts and talents we receive come directly from Him. Should we not use them to give Him glory?

For the past few days, I had been listening to the old music I did once upon a time, digging through live performances and documentary’s. I was struck by the simplicity of those whom I thought were so great, and could see the same struggles that I faced in my lifetime. A deep longing to be loved. Not as the world loves, and rather than turning to our Lord, taking a road seldom ever return. Taking everything but our Lord and trying to recreate that Love, to shove into the soul to fill the void of who I was truly missing.

As I said above, I found myself praying for all the performers who had passed away. Deeply, asking our Lord to have mercy on all of us. As my time was done, and I left, getting into my car and turning on the key, a song had began to play called “Friend of the Devil” by the Grateful Dead. I rolled my eyes as changed the station and drove away thinking about how so many think that guy is a “friend”, who our Lord himself called the Gospel of John 8:44  “You belong to your father the devil and you willingly carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie, he speaks in character, because he is a liar and the father of lies.”. How we often blame our Lord for everything that goes wrong, for the chaos, turmoil and all else that is not gratifying to what we deem is.

Pondering deeper, what a sad song from such a sad soul. I was never a Dead fan, nor cared very much for Jerry Garcia or the entire dead head fan base ideology.  What went through my mind was simply “ick”. Disgust for hearing that song when I was leaving our Lord in prayer. Disgust for the fact a song like that was playing or was ever written.  I came to the stop sign and what immediately caught my heart was a billboard.

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I sat for a few moments in awe at this “sign” and knew in my heart exactly what our Lord was saying to me. I  began to ask for fogginess for all those whom I did not follow, did not like, did not idolize and did not admire. Also, teaching me never to assume the worst of anyone, but continue to hope in our Lord. All of us are lost at one time or another. May it not be, nor ever be for all eternity.

“Forgiving men, taking pity on them, is a greater work than the creation of the world”. – St. Thomas Aquinas

Prayer for the Poor Souls in Purgatory

English

V. Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.
R. And let the perpetual light shine upon them.

And may the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

Latine

V. Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine.
R. Et lux perpetua luceat eis.

Fidelium animae, per misericordiam Dei, requiescant in pace. Amen.

 

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O Sacred Head Surrounded

I am reduced to nothing, the moment this hymn begins. My throat closes. There is a tightness in my chest and the words can not pass my lips. I can never, as hard as I try, sing this hymn, as the tears well up and stream down my cheeks. I can only assume, for now, its the interior contemplation breaking out in a way I could never put into words.

This hymn is just a short part of Salve Mundi Salutare, a poem in honor of our Lords various members on the cross. I have shared this poem in previous posts, divided into seven cantos,  “Ad Pedes”, “Ad Genua”, “Ad Manus”, “Ad Latus”, “Ad Pectus”, “Ad Cor”, “Ad Faciem” (To the Feet, Knees, Hands, Side, Breast, Heart, Face).

Please see the post below, To The Feet, and if you would like to continue, just click the next post.

Salve Mundi Salutare: Ad Pedes

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Eternal Father, turn away Your angry gaze from our guilty people whose face has become unsightly in Your eyes. Look instead upon the Face of Your beloved Son, in Whom You are well pleased. We now offer You this Holy Face, covered with shame and disfigured by bloody bruises, in reparation for the crimes of our age, in order to appease Your anger, justly provoked against us. Because Your Divine Son, our Redeemer, has taken upon His Head all the sins of His members, that they might be spared, we now beg You, Eternal Father, to grant us mercy. Amen.

 

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Who Is The Accuser

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The many, many “news” story’s I see today, written by whomever, saying Catholics must love and accept LGBT, or this group, or that group and so on, has caused me to ask our Lord in prayer, and I pray you ask Him also: Who is my accuser that assumes the Church does not love them?

The Catholic Church has always been open to all, as a Father and Mother loves all their children, always open to welcoming life to the family of faith. The disconnect comes when we assume that Love is acceptance of insubordination or defiance. It is not. Love corrects the defiant or insubordinate child and does not allow the child to be disruptive, for the benefit of the child. Love does have rules. When the rules of Love are broken, it is not Love, but less than Love.

“Many gave false witness against him, but their testimony did not agree.” Mark 14:56

 

 

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Jubilee Year of Fatima: 100 Years

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The picture above, was taken by me at St. John of the Cross Catholic Church, in Lemon grove, CA, on Thursday, September 8, 2011. It was the day of the great Southwest Blackout and the Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady of Fatima was visiting my parish at the time. It was the most beautiful event I had attended.

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The church was lit as we set up for the Pilgrim Statues arrival, and had  a procession of our Lady of Fatima scheduled along with Exposition of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament all day and praying the Holy Rosary on the hour, every hour, by different ministry’s in our Parish, from the time of its arrival, to the time of its departure, concluding with benediction.

Our Lord

You can see in this photo, at St. John of the Cross Catholic Church, we have a huge stained glass window in the back of the church of all the Archangels. As you can see, it is reflecting on our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. To see this in person was spectacular!

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At 3;38 PM, the lights went out due to the largest power outage in California history and we began to light the Church by candlelight, as the sun began to set.

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Thanks to a few souls, we had two flashlights provided also, to help others for the Liturgy and to place more light on the statue of our Holy Mother.

Procession

The procession was lovely and the moon became big and bright this night, as it became the light to guide us on our way.

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I will never forget this day. So many beautiful things occurred to bring many souls together under the most complex circumstances, to make this day and evening, one of the more beautiful days of our lives in prayer.

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On this Saturday, May 13, 2017, it marks 100 years since the first Apparition of our Lady to the shepherd children in Fatima Portugal. I will be attending a special meeting with my Carmelite Brothers and Sisters for Holy Mass, a renewal of our Carmelite Promises and listening to a talk given by our former Spiritual Director. Later Saturday Night, my husband and I will be attending “Date Night” at our Parish, in which Married couples come together to reflect on the love they have for one another through the Sacrament of Marriage. I mention this,  for this reason:

Sister Lucia dos Santos, one of the three children who witnessed the Marian apparitions at Fatima, died in 2005. But before her death, she predicted that the final battle between Christ and Satan would be over marriage and the family.

Thank you Our Lady of Fatima, for prayers answered. I pray again, through you Most Beautiful Flower, Our Lady of Fatima, intercede for us still, and for the entire world, for the conversion of sinners, for the intentions of our Holy Father Pope Francis and for all the intentions of the Sacred Heart of your Son, our Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen

Repent, and believe.

Pope Francis has granted a plenary indulgence opportunity for the 100th anniversary of the Fatima apparitions throughout the centennial year, from the 27th of November 2016 till the 26th of November 2017.

Our Lady of Fatima, Pray for us!

Our Father:

Our Father, Who art in heaven
Hallowed be Thy Name;
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil. Amen.

The Creed:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church, the communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.

 

Please see the link below

Jubilee Year of Fatima Indulgence

 

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Divine Mercy And The Sacred Heart

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I believe it was 2008, Easter Sunday, morning, I walked into my back yard and began to water the flowers. There is a protestant church directly behind my home and my yard backs to it and overlooks its parking lot. As I sat and began watering, I watched car after car pull into the lot to attend to Sunday service for Easter.

As I sat there, I began to think about how they were not Catholic. What were they doing to actually celebrate Easter? Whats the point of going there?

I sat in my shorts, smoking a cigarette, watering the flowers, or what I had of them, our Lord entered my heart in regards to myself, asking me;  What are YOU doing?

It hurt when I thought about it. It hurt bad and I knew I needed to do something. What was I doing? I had the girls baptized, our oldest in 2006, and our youngest in 2007. But, what was I doing now? My husband was stationed in Yuma at this time and I had not given much thought to spending much of any time on the weekends doing anything but being with him and the girls. He was only home on weekends and I was mom to two small children full time, alone, for the rest of the time.

By the time I went back into the house, it was mid afternoon. Easter was almost over and there was always next year. (As I write this I can’t believe I actually thought that but I did)

The next morning, my husband left for Yuma and it was another week of being mommy and blogging about Military and political things which kept my attention away from what I should have been doing. But this week was different. What are YOU doing kept playing over and over in my heart. By Friday of that week, I was determined to attend Holy Mass on Sunday, which I did, and it was Divine Mercy Sunday.

I had no idea what Divine Mercy Sunday was. There was a giant painting of Jesus. The Priest said something during the Homily about it and I still had no clue what it was. All I knew was Sunday Holy Mass was what was missing, again. You see, back in the late 90’s & early 2000s, before I had moved to California, I began attending Holy Mass again and underwent a truck load of , all I can call now, serious spiritual attacks. Everything that could go wrong in my life and keep me from our Lord, did. I fell back into my old ways, and all those “nasty things”, went away when I put our Lord out of the picture.  But you see, they didn’t go away. They were still there hidden behind illusions of love, peace and tranquility, which was all false without Him.

At the conclusion of Holy Mass, a woman,  got up to speak about how the Ministry of Perpetual Adoration was in need to souls to sit with our Lord. I signed up that day.  Later on as my conversion of heart continued to melt the ice from my heart, that woman became ill, and I was placed to head Perpetual Adoration Mission.

As I left Mass and my conversion blossomed, I never stopped attending Holy Mass, even bringing my two small children with me every Sunday. Weeks later, coming to learn of Divine Mercy Sunday and the meaning behind it. In the years that have since followed, from that day, it rekindled my love which was held so deeply for the Sacred Heart of our Lord, which in turn, kindled a desire to find out more of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

There are souls today who feel that the Sacred Heart Devotion has been overlooked and somehow pushed to the side for an “easier” thing as Divine Mercy. I can tell you from my point of view, Divine Mercy opened me to love again. But now, to love DEEPLY the Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. As He should be. There is no difference between the Sacred Heart of our Lord and Divine Mercy. Its the same Heart of our Lord.

Please feel free to search my blog for how many times I speak of the Love of the Sacred Heart of our Lord. Or you can read True Love, my post in which I speak of how I was given a picture of the Sacred Heart of our Lord and fell in love with the image of our Lord and not Him in Word or Body Blood Soul and Divinity, when I was about 8 years old. Keep always in mind, He loves us first.

If you have doubts of the Divine Mercy of our Lord, pray more. Trust Him more. Doubts in His mercy and justice, cause serious internal problems within the soul which lead many to walk away from the faith, as I had many times before.

This Divine Mercy Sunday, I pray souls come to understand more and embrace His Mercy, His Divine Mercy which pulls souls into His most Sacred Heart.

There is something I would like to share which speaks of this problem some have.

Please see: The Sacred Heart and Divine Mercy

Also, from 5 years ago: A Monk Reflects on Divine Mercy and the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Excellent prayer from St. Francis Xavier:

O God, everlasting creator of all things, remember that the souls of unbelievers were made by Thee and formed in Thine own image and likeness. Remember that Jesus, Thy Son, endured a most bitter death for their salvation. Permit not, I beseech Thee, O Lord, that Thy Son should be despised any longer by unbelievers, but do Thou graciously accept the prayers of holy men and of the Church, the Spouse of Thy most holy Son, and be mindful of Thy mercy. Forget their idolatry and unbelief and grant that they too may some day know Him Thou hast sent, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is our Life and Resurrection, by whom we have been saved and delivered, to whom be glory for endless ages.

Amen.

EDIT TO ADD: Bishop Robert Barron’s Homily for 4/30/2017. Its rather remarkable to hear after the fact, what our Lord is calling us to do, and you find out you are back on the right road.

Please see:

THE PATTERN OF LOVE

Like the two disciples walking towards Emmaus, a symbol of worldly power and security, and away from Jerusalem, the center of sacrifice, we need to be stopped in our tracks. Christ appears to them, but they do not recognize him. They do not recognize him because they are walking the wrong way. The recognition of the pattern of Christ’s life does come until the Eucharistic act which presents the pattern of sacrificial love. Then they immediately go back to Jerusalem, the place of suffering love.

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Old Man And The New Man

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Once an old man spread rumors that his neighbor was a thief. As a result, the young man was arrested.
Days later the young man was proven innocent. After being released he sued the old man for wrongly accusing him.
In the court the old man told the Judge:
“They were just comments, didn’t harm anyone.”
The judge told the old man:
“Write all the things you said about him on a piece of paper. Tear it up on the way home and throw away the pieces. Tomorrow, come back to hear the sentence.”
Next day, the judge told the old man:
“Before receiving the sentence, you will have to go out and gather all the pieces of paper that you threw out yesterday.”
The old man said:
“I can’t do that! The wind spread them and I won’t know where to find them.”
The judge then replied:
“The same way, simple comments may destroy the honor of a man to such an extent that one is not able to fix it. If you can’t speak well of someone, rather don’t say anything.”

*”Let’s all be masters of our words rather than being slaves of our words.”*


“Write everything down, on the way home, tear it up and throw away the pieces” <— Its very important to understand, we just don’t cast it (sin) to the wind where it is taken all over and others read it and are influenced by it to do the same. We place it in the trash can when we get home. That “trash can” is the confessional and you know where home is. And when you place it there, leave it there.

When I read this above, which was shared on Facebook by a Catholic Priest,  I can see myself as both the young man and the old man. The “old self” and the “new self”.

And what is a soul to do? Trust in our Lord. Place your faith in our Lord. Hope in our Lord. Believe Him. Love Him.

 

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The Night Before Christmas

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As I read this post by Fr. Stephen this morning, I found it to be very moving and a  beautiful reminder as to how our Lord truly is the Head of the Church, His bride. The Night Before Christmas comes to mind and heart within me. With Fr. Stephens approval, here are a few of his thoughts…

FEEL FREE TO SHARE MY THOUGHTS!

For the benefit of those who haven’t followed me, here is JUST THREE of my posts or comments about the connection between VCII and AL and the movement of the Holy Spirit.

Holy Spirit: we know over the centuries the Holy Spirit has always brought His Church through dark times to the truth. E.G. Centuries of heresies, some saturating, about the divinity and humanity of Christ. But the Holy Spirit will always expose error and lead us to the truth. So let me start with a simple example. I love Pope Benedict. But when Benedict was Pope, few among the average worldwide Catholics knew that several of Benedict’s fellow German bishops had heretical beliefs. He surely didn’t expose them. He retires and Francis calls this Synod which exposed Kasper et al and their false beliefs. Remember Kasper et al wanted their teaching extended to homosexual relationships. Francis wouldn’t touch that but we see the same false teaching of Kasper et al applied to these relationships and this problem is now getting a lot of attention. So the Synod and AL is exposing a lot of false teaching and teachers. Now I do not know whether this was Francis’ intent, but it is the intent and work of the Holy Spirit to expose false teaching and purge His Church of it. The problems we see now go deeper than the issue of marriage and sins against it. This is about the heresies around mortal sin and conscience… The Fundamental Option and relativistic heresies of consequentialism and proportionalism which go back prior to VCII. Prior to the council though they were hidden within the Church as were the false teachers. Many criticize the council for what it caused, but what it caused was this boil which had been growing under the skin for years to rise above the surface to be lanced. We saw the puss and the smell post VCII. Much was confronted by JPII (his encyclicals) but during his and Benedicts’ reigns many of the heretics went on the lay low, but this issue of what is mortal sin, the conscience, its relationship to confession and marriage has never gone away. It was the root issue around the backlash against HV and it is the root issue now. So I feel that this heresy of the fundamental option is being exposed again by the Holy Spirit so everyone can see who believes it and who adheres to true Catholic teaching so it can finally be put to rest. Bottom line, you know and I know, that one unrepented mortal sin can cost us our salvation. Kasper, McElroy, Cupich and many others don’t seem to believe that. They seem to believe in the fundamental option. This has been going on for 50 plus years. I believe this will be the final exposition of this heresy and the final rejection of it. This may not be Francis’ intent but it is the intent of the Holy Spirit. This fight has been needed for decades and I have been itching for it since I have been a priest because 50 years ago the FO caused me to walk away from my Faith. Today, We are slowly but surely seeing where everyone stands. That is always the second step of the Holy Spirit. Expose the false teachers. Many have taught against these heresies (1st move of the Holy Spirit), but few have exposed the heretics (2nd move) . They are being exposed now. The third step of the Holy Spirit will be the cleansing.

Here is what happened after VCII and seems like it is happening here.
1st we need to understand that there are bishops and priests who are going to disobey Church teaching regardless of how clear it is. When this happens after Councils ( VCII) or in this case, a document, AL, those who desire obedience will often point to the Council or document as faulty. Fact is, the fault is in the heart of the disobedient. The fact that the disobedient are now being exposed is the work of the Holy Spirit. And the disobedient is neither the Pope or the Cardinals of the Dubia. The disobedient are shepherds like Kasper, McElroy and others who are using this as an opportunity to justify their disobedience…allowing anyone in good conscience to receive communion in spite of sexual intimacy.
Have you read the 16 documents of VCII? Where is there ambiguity? Give me one example. I will give you an example to make my point about disobedience in spite of truth. Read the document on the liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium! You will see what the Council intended and what the libs did were two disparate things. The craziness that came out after VCII existed in the Church prior to VCII. VCII was a movement of the Holy Spirit to lance a boil that had grown so the puss could be released and cleaned up. It takes 50 to 100 years for the fruits of a council to be seen in its fullest. The heresies that existed prior to VCII that came to the light after still exist. Now we know who are pushing these heresies. Let me give you another example of the movement of the Holy Spirit more recently (and I am really tired of stating this for the outsiders to my page). Few average Catholics under Benedict (and I love Benedict) knew that many of his fellow German bishops were pushing heresy. Benedict didn’t expose them. But the Synod exposed them. Remember Kasper and the boys wanted to give gays the right to have sex and still receive communion (see elsewhere on my page). Now we know who the good guys are and who is bogus. The boil grew back because the heretics went underground during JPII’s papacy. (Remember Kasper is a product of JPII). The boil is being lanced again. I believe this could be the final battle to deal with the “fundamental option” heresy that has lingered going back pre VCII. This heresy is at the core of everything we are seeing now and was at the core of the backlash after HV and VCII.

Here is a 4th comment…

As I have said often, the Holy Spirit is moving in His Church. Now Francis may not be intentional in this movement but he is the Pope so he has to be a part of it. So I posit!
If the Pope is perfectly clear (as was JPII and Benedict), the disobedient false teachers would go on the lay low and continue doing what they have been doing! Causing division through disobedience. The Holy Father remains vague and everyone has to vocalize their interpretation of AL thus exposing what they believe…truth or heresy. I have been clear about this! Few knew that Kasper et al was a heretic under his fellow German Pope, Benedict. Everyone knows now. JPII taught the truth but elevated Kasper and Cupich to bishops. See my comment above about the 3movements of the Holy Spirit. – Fr. Stephen Imbarrato

 

 

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Thank You Lord

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Invalid Marriages

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I’m not buying the headlines today. Are Many Marriages Today Invalid? January 29th, 2005, I married my husband in Cesar’s Palace Las Vegas. Being Roman Catholic and he Greek Orthodox, it wasn’t until my serious conversion of heart, I took into account how serious of an offence this was against our Lord. We had both been married before. I love this man tremendously. Please read Cohabitation And Holy Communion, in which I have spoken about this before.

Today, after being married in the Catholic Church on May 4th, 20013, which I hold very dear to my heart and soul, we are continuing on in our marriage after a serious threat to all marriage. That being infidelity. I will not go into detail as the wounds are deep and we need time, prayers and patience to heal from this. I have forgiven my spouse and meant it. As I have also forgiven the other soul involved. We came very close to divorce. So close that we were just one day away from filing. It was pride and anger that lead to the decision to grab hold of an attorney and it was humility and love that made the decision to forgive and work through all the pain and suffering to continue on. The one thing for me that I just couldn’t stop pondering was how so many today “pretend”. Pretend everything. Marriage is not pretend. Vows are not pretend. The Church is not pretend. Our Lord is not pretend.

Back on June 3rd, the weekend before our filing was to be done, I prayed through the Immaculate Heart of Mary to our Lords Sacred Heart and I wrote:

What’s funny is, in all this divorce stuff, does a torn up piece of paper by the state mean anything to God? You can spend thousands of dollars in court to get a divorce and it can never amount to one drop of our Lord’s blood and a vow made with Him. So..Nope. I don’t believe it does. I made a vow to our Lord and Mark in the Church and I intend to keep it with God. I didn’t go through the annulment process and marry my husband in the church to have the state say your no longer married. My door will always be open for Mark to return, if he so chooses, and I pray our Lord converts his heart as He has mine, but I’m not holding my breath. So lets flush 20K down the toilet and Mark can continue to pretend he is not married. I will live still, as I know, I still am. End of story. Peace.

When I sought my attorney, so many signs were present. It was so easy to get one. It was even easy for this unemployed mother with no income to obtain a five thousand dollar retainer for them when we had been financially strapped for years. Something was wrong with this. It was far to easy and happening way to fast. This I knew in my heart was not from our Lord. I had heard in my heart that God hates divorce.

The following day, my husband moved back home with us and the process of healing began. As it is still today and will be for some time. I love him very much. As I love our Lord very much. And our Lord loves each of us first.

All I can say today, when I took my vow, I meant every word. I always intended to hold true to that vow no matter what. Even today under the serious issues we have faced and the continuing fallout from them. I said it before and I will say it again. I meant EVERY WORD of my vow to my husband and our Lord and I will never allow the state, if my husband should choose to leave and divorce me, to say that I am no longer married when it was to God, my husband and the state that I professed my vows of Marriage. Even if it should mean to live in a state of chastity and celibacy, we are called to that same chastity IN the sacrament of Marriage and being single. We are living in a world of souls playing “make believe” where nothing really matters and nothing means anything which couldn’t be farther from the Truth. The Truth is, humility, love, commitment, integrity and sincerity is needed for any Marriage to succeed. Beatitudes are to be lived. No matter what happens. That vow is also to our Lord. Look and see what our Lord said about how a man should love his wife and how a woman should love her husband and DO IT. Do it as your souls are Married to our Lord and live the vow as you are Married to our Lord. St. Thomas More, pray for us.

St. Monica pray for us.
St. Rita Of Cascia, pray for us.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us
Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in you
Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us all

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That Moment

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How shall I make a return to the Lord for all the good he has done for me?

That moment you realize your really listening to the Good Shepherd….

As a hart longs for flowing streams, so longs my soul for thee, O God

While on retreat this past weekend, I was pondering that voice I had been listening to. It was a chilly and very windy day Saturday and in the midst of silence, I found myself walking around taking in the beauty of the nature I was placed in. I came to a water feature and bent down, finding myself asking our Lord, “Is it you Lord? Is this voice I have been listening to You? In an instant, I heard a slight giggle in my heart. I began to look myself over and I was dressed in all in white. The pants I unknowingly put on that morning were white along with my shirt were white and I was wearing my comfy snugly white coat that is fluffy like a lamb. I looked up at the statue atop the water feature and a smile came over my face. In that moment, I knew for a fact.

Yes. The lost sheep indeed was finally home, healed, and at peace. It was no doubt the Good Shepherd who retrieved me. The Good Shepherd Who healed me. The Good Shepherd who I love. It also just happened to be “Good Shepherd” weekend. We are his people, the sheep of his flock.

Jesus said:
“My sheep hear my voice;
I know them, and they follow me.
I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish.
No one can take them out of my hand.
My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all,
and no one can take them out of the Father’s hand.
The Father and I are one.”

 

 

 

 

 

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He Has RISEN!

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Pope Francis – 2016 Easter Vigil Homily

Please find below the English translation of Pope Francis’ homily at the Mass of the Easter Vigil
“Peter ran to the tomb” (Lk 24:12). What thoughts crossed Peter’s mind and stirred his heart as he ran to the tomb? The Gospel tells us that the eleven, including Peter, had not believed the testimony of the women, their Easter proclamation. Quite the contrary, “these words seemed to them an idle tale” (v. 11). Thus there was doubt in Peter’s heart, together with many other worries: sadness at the death of the beloved Master and disillusionment for having denied him three times during his Passion.
There is, however, something which signals a change in him: after listening to the women and refusing to believe them, “Peter rose” (v. 12). He did not remain sedentary, in thought; he did not stay at home as the others did. He did not succumb to the sombre atmosphere of those days, nor was he overwhelmed by his doubts. He was not consumed by remorse, fear or the continuous gossip that leads nowhere. He was looking for Jesus, not himself. He preferred the path of encounter and trust. And so, he got up, just as he was, and ran towards the tomb from where he would return “amazed” (v. 12). This marked the beginning of Peter’s resurrection, the resurrection of his heart. Without giving in to sadness or darkness, he made room for hope: he allowed the light of God to enter into his heart, without smothering it.
The women too, who had gone out early in the morning to perform a work of mercy, taking the perfumed ointments to the tomb, had the same experience. They were “frightened and bowed their faces”, and yet they were deeply affected by the words of the angel: “Why do you seek the living among the dead?” (v. 5).
We, like Peter and the women, cannot discover life by being sad, bereft of hope. Let us not stay imprisoned within ourselves, but let us break open our sealed tombs to the Lord so that he may enter and grant us life. Let us give him the stones of our rancour and the boulders of our past, those heavy burdens of our weaknesses and falls. Christ wants to come and take us by the hand to bring us out of our anguish. This is the first stone to be moved aside this night: the lack of hope which imprisons us within ourselves. May the Lord free us from this trap, from being Christians without hope, who live as if the Lord were not risen, as if our problems were the centre of our lives.
We see and will continue to see problems both within and without. They will always be there. But tonight it is important to shed the light of the Risen Lord upon our problems, and in a certain sense, to “evangelize” them. Let us not allow darkness and fear to distract us and control us; we must cry out to them: the Lord “is not here, but has risen!” (v. 6). He is our greatest joy; he is always at our side and will never let us down.
This is the foundation of our hope, which is not mere optimism, nor a psychological attitude or desire to be courageous. Christian hope is a gift that God gives us if we come out of ourselves and open our hearts to him. This hope does not disappoint us because the Holy Spirit has been poured into our hearts (cf. Rom 5:5). The Paraclete does not make everything look appealing. He does not remove evil with a magic wand. But he pours into us the vitality of life, which is not the absence of problems, but the certainty of being loved and always forgiven by Christ, who for us has conquered sin, death and fear. Today is the celebration of our hope, the celebration of this truth: nothing and no one will ever be able to separate us from his love (cf. Rom 8:39).
The Lord is alive and wants to be sought among the living. After having found him, each person is sent out by him to announce the Easter message, to awaken and resurrect hope in hearts burdened by sadness, in those who struggle to find meaning in life. There is so necessary today. However, we must not proclaim ourselves. Rather, as joyful servants of hope, we must announce the Risen One by our lives and by our love; otherwise we will be only an international organization full of followers and good rules, yet incapable of offering the hope for which the world longs.
How can we strengthen our hope? The liturgy of this night offers some guidance. It teaches us to remember the works of God. The readings describe God’s faithfulness, the history of his love towards us. The living word of God is able to involve us in this history of love, nourishing our hope and renewing our joy. The Gospel also reminds us of this: in order to kindle hope in the hearts of the women, the angel tells them: “Remember what [Jesus] told you” (v. 6). Let us not forget his words and his works, otherwise we will lose hope. Let us instead remember the Lord, his goodness and his life-giving words which have touched us. Let us remember them and make them ours, to be sentinels of the morning who know how to help others see the signs of the Risen Lord.
Dear brothers and sisters, Christ is risen! Let us open our hearts to hope and go forth. May the memory of his works and his words be the bright star which directs our steps in the ways of faith towards the Easter that will have no end.

 

 

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Beauty Of Reality

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I had a very hard time falling asleep last night as I was pondering the state of the world and what is taking place. Although our hearts can be crushed at times, our love, hope and faith can not. I had posted something to Facebook last night:

We are facing Iran with nukes, US Marines being assassinated by terrorists, children being murdered and body parts harvested for profit, the media practicing Communist censoring tactics, forcing Catholic Nuns to supply birth control because the government no longer considers them to be a “religious group”, All out assault on the Catholic Church by the government, Gender neutrality, destruction of the natural family, homosexual “marriage”, flags being the cause of murdering people and terrorists are not, Kindergartners being taught sex education, Teens able to get an abortion without parental notification but are not Adults, Christians being labeled hate groups…. And the big story is an earthquake MAY wipe out the entire Pacific NW is supposed to worry me? Please. You can’t stop the earthquake. Everything else is the real problem that NEEDS attention and is all self inflected. ASAP. Lord have mercy on us all.

As I lay in bed, unable to sleep and found myself pondering all the things taking place, I began to pray to our Lord. Asking Him why? Asking Him how could so many souls be so lost in “worldliness” and not see true peace in Him? I pondered a post to twitter that i had made in regards to “crickets chirping” from anyone in the state government of California in regards to investigating planned parenthood.

I began to pray the rosary as I lay in bed. My focus was drawn on to the suffering of our Lord amidst the crowds of people who did not believe Him on the road to Calvary. It was horrific to see our Lord spat on and mocked. Ignored and very little compassion shown to Him. What I couldn’t help but see was He also went through the crowds of souls who didn’t care about Him. Didn’t want to hear Him. Had better things to do then repent and believe what He had said and done. I fell asleep and began to dream….

I had the most beautiful dream I have ever had. I was walking in the City of God. I was a princess being courted by our King. Everyone was full of joy. Everyone knew me and was so kind. Kindness radiated for every soul, no matter where I walked. But I didn’t know me. A man approached me and I knew Him to be our Lord without saying a word to me. He offered me everything and I asked Him, “Will you read me this book?”, I don’t know what the book was, and His smile answered. He was dressed for a huge celebration and wanted me to join Him. I kept telling him I needed to get ready. I needed to get dressed. He smiled and I heard in my heart, “Go look”. He knew I was complete, but I couldn’t comprehend what complete entailed. I walked into a small changing room that was full of mirrors. I had thought I was not dressed and ready for this celebration. I had been fumbling around in a purse for lipstick and when I looked up to apply it, nothing was needed. When I looked at myself, I was perfect. He had dressed me in what I had needed. He made me ready for where we needed to go. He provided everything without my even knowing it was already complete, it was done.

I woke up and my eyes fixed on the picture of our Lord in the Eucharist that I have on my dresser. The peace and joy that I had in this dream remained with me when I woke from it. And I still have it this evening. I had this immense ringing in my ears that sounded like crickets as I woke. What came to my heart the second I was aware of the ringing in my ears was Scripture John 8 21:30 with our Lord telling my heart, if they are not listening to Him, don’t listen to the misery they cause for themselves. Offering only Him in their pain. Hear nothing but the chirping crickets. Do not let it drag you into misery yourself. Peace. Faith, hope and love in Christ always.

Today I find myself pondering most of John 8 and knowing in my heart, it is already complete. Souls only need to answer Him, yes or no.

I had a dream I was a princess being courted by our King. When I woke up, it wasn’t a dream but the beauty of reality in living our faith in Him.

Glory, praise and honor to our Lord, Jesus Christ, now and forever. Amen

“Let us understand that God is a Physician and that suffering is a medicine for salvation, not a punishment for damnation.” ~ St. Augustine

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The Refiners Fire Or Instant Gratification

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Pondering choosing the mercy of God over the death of sin…

How many have seen this video of the people choosing the candy bar over the bar of silver?

After seeing this video floating around, commenting a few times, sin came to mind and how we choose the sin so many times over choosing what is right and just.

I woke this morning and after praying, couldn’t stop thinking about “He will sit refining and purifying silver“.

Lord, help me to choose what is right and just. What is holy and not what is sinful. Help me with Your mercy, through your most Holy sacraments of Your church, to pull closer to you and distance myself from the world and all the empty promises that fill me with garbage, still leaving me hungry for You O Lord.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for me, a sinner. I choose the Refiners way and not the way that leads to eternal destruction. Purify me O Lord. To You be the glory, honor and praise, O Lord.

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The Sower And The Seed

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Todays Gospel, The Parable Of The Sower And The Seed (Matthew 13:1-23),is one that I have pondered over an over. My love for our Lord so deeply set in the “seed” when I was young. Loving Him so, and as age set in, so did the influence of the world. I was “carried away”. I was devoured by the “bird” of the world while I sat on the path. Being swallowed in sin and constant turbulence in the bowels of the world and worldliness. Taken into total darkness, wondering where I was, Where God was, and then becoming so indifferent to Him, surrounded by death and destruction, but still knowing there is a God, as I kept the “original form” that baptism had given to me. Knowing as I moved through the bowels of sin, that God was real. Somewhere. He had to be.

My conversion of heart came! I was still that little seed, but covered in the “poop” of my sinfulness as all worldliness and worldly desire is poop. As I hit the ground,and repentance came, the more I turned to the Grace our Lord offered me, His light shone on me and through constantly receiving His sacraments I was “watered”, washing away the “poop” of my mortal sinfulness.

I started to “sprout”. This little plant, in the beginning, couldn’t see above much as I struggled and tried to stretch up to receive more and more of the LOVE that our Lord was giving to me. I could see other beautiful flowers and a huge tree but I was so close to the ground, all I could do, was to look “Up”.

Yesterday, as I had finally reached a growing point, I looked arround. I realized I had been planted in the “Garden of our Lady of Mount Carmel”. This realization does not give me a pass not to grow any further. On the contrary, now, using all the gifts I have been given by our Lord, I must THRIVE in His Light and Love, to ensure I am not a “weed” but rather able to produce “Fruit” that is pleasing to our Lord. For our Lord.

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Our Lady

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Last night, I attended Exposition of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, for the soul purpose of what took place in my life today. Handing myself fully over to Him.

I entered the Chapel of St. John of the Cross, and came face to face with our Lord. I thanked him for all He had done for me and to me through my conversion of heart. I poured myself out to Him and simply asked Him if He would allow me to enter under the Mantle of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. As I finished praying, I felt this tickle under my nose and sneezed. All I could hear in my heart was “God bless you”.

To someone who doesn’t understand His presence completely taking over my life, it’s a meaningless thing that occurred. To me, this so simple action would have been nothing more than a sneeze after prayers, if it hadn’t been told to me a long time before. I knew in my heart, our Lord truly called me with the words, “God bless you”.

Looking back through my enter conversion, not able to comprehend our Lord calling to me in so many ways and thinking I was in “Trouble”, struggling with what so many call “Scrupulosity” as it was, for most of this, I instantly knew how to “Trust Him”. The evil one would never use a soul to repent of ones evilness, nor call them to come and sit in front of the Blessed Sacrament to be near our Lord and empty ones self of all “self”, receive the sacraments, attend daily Mass let alone, enter the Third Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. I’m not trying to blow my own horn here, the glory is our Lords. The honor is our Lords. Everything belongs to Him. “Ad maiorem Dei gloriam”. To the greater glory of God.

Today, this morning, I was received under Our Lady’s Mantle. The mantle of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Many years ago,going back to the point of least “distraction”, as I attended confession for a sin that caused me great pains for many years, my penance was to sit in front of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. As I did, I was reduced into a blubbering pool of tears at how I refused to listen to Him in my youth. How I refused to confess that one sin for fear. As I looked up between sobbing, I seen the face of our Lord in the Eucharist. There was no doubt it was Him with His Crown of Thorns very visible to me. There were many others in the room with me and they did not see, was I was “Seeing”. I then seen myself as a child of about 3. I don’t profess to know what this means other than our Lord loves me too.

When our Lord “opens eyes” for the first time, there is utter horror at the fact we have been so sinful and rotting in our sins. But the greater horror is that we have hurt our Lord so painfully. You NEVER seek to hurt Him again. Our “environment of sinfulness” becomes a place we never wish or hope to be. To see ones self in this way causes the soul to pull closer and closer to Him, and away from that world we once lived in, along with a deep repentance of all our sins. Not just the big ones. All sins. You begin to say NO to yourself, and yes to all our Lord commands and all He has said and done. The “appetite” for pleasures changes from flesh, to “Spirit” as the soul realizes the reality that all “pleasure” comes from our Lord. One doesn’t seek vanity, or fortune or fame. As all those things that man can give, and do, never replace or replenish the soul for this desire for all things holy. All things change! God never does. He remains as He is.

He becomes the “Object of all Desire”. You turn from self, and turn to Him as His grace replaces self. The key is to act upon it. It’s easy to see why so many refuse to believe in Him. It’s quite simple. Because they don’t want to. There isn’t a PLACE in His “Kingdom” that any soul can escape Him and His mercy He is offering to all souls. All it takes is denying self, and accepting Him. ALL of Him.

Mama Mary is the shinning example of His Grace. The first question: “How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?” In thinking of this passage in scripture and pondering it, how can anyone of us believe in Him, if we refuse to have a “Relationship” with Him. Unless we say yes, the only relation will be with self. The world shook around her, and His “Kingdom Within” that was brought forth to the world, was the first peek into the “Kingdom” she was told of, through His Grace, by saying yes and acting on it! She remained in “His Kingdom Within” with not only constantly saying yes Lord, but acting on it, even to the day she told Him, “They have no wine”.

Accepting the sorrows as knowing, this to shall pass no matter how great the sorrow may be, she did not remain in the sorrow, nor allow it to take hold of her, as He remained with Her in Spirit, guiding her through it. Therefore she was there to strengthen and guide the Apostles, when that same Spirit came to them, to guide them through and not cling to it but to the Spirit and become one. I have learned that the greatest use for His grace, is humility. Placing ones self last as Mama Mary does. She does not seek to be known, rather she seeks to glorify God. She does not seek self. She seeks simply to do the will of God because she loves Him.

“Do not be afraid” were the words first offered to our Holy Mother as are the words today, to each soul from our Lord who turn to Him.

Thank you Mama, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, for saying yes.

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The Last Mission

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Its been very interesting, to say the least, this Easter Week. I have once again been struggling with health issues and have finally been diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure.

A year ago, when it was time for me to step aside from all my duties at my old parish, I had told my pastor at that time, our Lord was calling me to go home. Our Lord was telling me to spend time with my children and family. I struggled so hard with that message. Now I feel He is telling me why. He has made Himself very visible in the last few weeks, although He has made Himself very visible in all aspects of my entire life, this time, it is as if He is tying everything together and everything I do, say, see and hear, I see He is there.

For close to 17 years, He has shown me through His grace, all that I had done to Him. Now, He is showing me all the things I have done for Him.

In my diagnosis, from Tuesday, I went from a diagnosis from having pneumonia and a possible Pulmonary Embolism, to entering into the ER and finding out about the fluid surrounding my heart and a little damage to the left side, although I had not had a heart attack. Thus I was given the diagnosis of Congestive Heart Failure. Not having a Pulmonary Embolism or pneumonia at all. I actually laugh at how they did not know. How they try to shove you into some mold that everyone should fit, because of such & such. Don’t get me wrong, I forgive them, and I know my Lord is my true Doctor, and no two are ever carbon copies but what He created us to be.

What I need to say today is complete consolation from our Lord. Through this beautiful conversion of heart, with my Lord’s grace, I am pondering, relishing and digging into a vast well of joy. I am coming to grips with how He has used me and changed me, has forgiven me and truly loves me. Just as He loves each of us. I am surrounded by His arms.

I called my old pastor and he came to my home and anointed me and another good friend came and brought me our Lord in the Eucharist. Both visits, had nothing to do with me. Nor will anything else. It’s about everyone else. It’s about Him. It’s about time and we do not have much of it, and it all belongs to Him. Everything is His.

When my visitors left, I was looking around talking to our Lord. My eyes came to one wall in my living room. Immediately, I knew what He was telling me. That entire sinful world I created, I lived and turned away from, was completely contained while what He has done is now my freedom to fully enjoy. How did I see this? The picture above is that wall. It’s not was is on the wall, it’s what is now contained and no longer free. That cage on the table, contains a snake. A snake that my cat dragged in (sparking, Lion of Judah) that I tossed into a cage and sealed up. (It’s a long story and she was hurt) Symbolism people, don’t call anyone about animal cruelty. hahah

When I see the symbolism of the “snake” (my old sins and tormentor) and I see it now totally contained, no longer free, unable to escape and hurt me and I see the pictures of all that I love, free and everywhere, and I hear the words of our Lord in my heart, there is no more doubt, there is no more anxiety, there is no more questioning, there is only a major consolation from our Lord telling me, yes you did capture and get rid of what I needed you to get rid of. This is the heart of repenting. I don’t expect anyone to understand this because He is sharing this with me and to understand it, you would have to know every second of my life.. It truly has been Him and I hear Him saying, You did it! I say back to my Lord, You did it Lord.

Now on to this Last Mission. Nothing is about me. He told me to spend the rest of my time with my family, that is the mission I am on now. I love them so much and it is a matter of teaching them now, be not afraid. Live the faith, not the world. This is what Divine Mercy is all about. Not looking at the consolations our Lord is giving to us as mine, but to see them in yourself, to give to others.

Pax Domini
All glory and honor to God

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Revolutionary

Fire of God

I had to share..

Vespers – Part of the Homily NOT preached Today (Aug 17) at the Vigil Mass: “Jesus has indeed set the earth on fire with His truth, and there will be no peace in this world until all falsehood finally bows to the truth”.

Someone says, “During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act”. We are living in such times. The world today stands in a great danger of being crushed by the secular aggression that is pouring out from all sides. A prophet is always a revolutionary. A prophet’s primary duty is to speak forth God’s message to God’s people; to tell people the truth they would not like to hear. A prophet to admonishes, reproves, denounces sin, calls to repentance, and brings consolation and pardon. Human society in every age bears testimony to the fact that to offer the light of truth to any morally depraved society is to invite serious repercussions. Prophet Jeremiah called the people of Judah to repentance. So the people hated him because of this, and plotted to kill him. Through baptism, we share in Christ’s own prophetic office. We too are invited to speak the word of God to our increasingly morally depraved world. As prophets, we are also called to speak in prayer to God the way Jesus does, and the main prayer of Jesus to His Father is the offering of His flesh and blood. We too are called to present our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, in spiritual worship. We are called to be completely crucified to the world, live to God alone, enjoying an intimate familiarity with the Lord. This is total commitment. As St Paul rightly counsels in the second reading, we must persevere in living out our faith, while always keeping Jesus before our eyes, and having in mind the joys of eternal life that await us in heaven.

One Egyptian Christian said two days ago, following the burning of several Churches in his country: “You can burn our Churches but you cannot burn our faith”. This is the spirit of martyrdom to which we are called as prophets in Christ. Jesus has indeed set the earth on fire with His truth, and there will be no peace in this world until all falsehood finally bows to the truth.
Fr-Nwora Okeke
Johns Creek, Georgia

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Gift Of Marriage

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After a long spiritual battle, going further back then I can remember, my husband and I have finally married in the Catholic Church, May 4, 2013. We had been living as brother and sister for many years so I could continue on in the journey home to the Catholic Church. After several years of uncertainty, rumors of divorce and other daggers spit at us from Satan, we have, only by the grace of God, finished this race. Many miracles occurred on this road. I am forever grateful to our Lord.

After all the ups and downs, I was given a beautiful spiritual gift I will not soon forget. On our way home from our wedding celebration, close to our home, I looked arround as my husband was driving and sence of being in friendly surroundings had overtaken me.. It was a peace I had not had for some time. I can ony describe this as a soldier coming home from war to a waiting family. I could breath. I could relax and it was as if our Lord had taken a creat crushing weight off of my soul. It truly has been a daily battle of intense fighting for freedom. Our Lord had allowed me R & R. There is nothing in this world more precious than KNOWING, God’s will have been done, the battle won and now, I could sit back and breath on this front of the war I know for fact, I am now fighting on the side of God and for good.

The gift from God below, (at the link) is the greatest gift I have ever received. I live to give this gift back to Him. With His grace, His will be done. Always.

https://www.facebook.com/video/embed?video_id=10201294534230201

Thank you Lord, your servant is listening…..

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Turning Tables

flipping

“And said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but you have made it a den of thieves”

Last Friday, a woman made her way to our Adoration chapel with two family members. She was in a condition of great fear. Frozen in fear. She did not want to leave the tabernacle. She clung to it with a crucifix in one hand and begged me to place holy water on her. My heart cried for her. You see I knew her pain as I had been in a similar condition many years ago. It’s a state of deep repentance. As I was describing this poor woman to another person, I was quickly reminded this week of our Lord in the temple, flipping over the money changers tables. The body is the Temple. When the “world” sees a soul in this state, they call it mental illness but never even think of the sickness of the soul. Confession! Anointing of the Sick! THEN take them to a mental care facility, arming them with a book of prayers for the duration. When the soul is sick, everything in the body is sick. There is no pill you can take or that can be created by man to cure a sick soul. Only our Lord is the Doctor of your soul. If you allow Him to fix your soul, your entire life blossoms into great beauty!

You see, our Lord did this to me. My soul has always belonged to Him as do all of ours baptized in the faith. I had made His “Temple” a den of thieves by living a sinful life and falling away from His teachings. He came in to His “Temple” and removed everything He did not place in there, everything that did not belong there. When this happened, I too was in a state of dread and fear, frozen in fear because it is Him, allowing the soul to be “Sifted as Wheat”. Every sin I had ever committed was being tossed into the dumpster as I stood by it repenting as it was thrown in, feeling like a “hoarder” watching everything I had, my sinful posessions and passions, which was in fact worthless garbage, being tossed away. There was nothing else I could do but repent. I was guilty of everything. A disconnect comes when we do not understand this is for the greater good of our soul and we think that Christ want’s us to just stand there and not move as this is taking place. Or that He hates us and is punishing us. Dead wrong! It is very incorrect to think this way. God never wishes you to be frozen in fear. He needs you to trust in Him and continue moving closer to Him with the understanding He is everywhere you are to complete His will. If we remain frozen in fear, afraid to move, we miss out the beauty of his consolations through all life, that He is trying to replace all the death that He removed from your soul that you had built up separated from Him.

No table of junk is left unturned. But know this. Everything that is removed is replaced with great joy and love that explodes into a satisfaction of knowing He is God and He is with you but it takes lots of prayer to work through this along with using all the grace and gifts He gives to you. Leaning and trusting completely on Him as the Builder, turning the tables on living the sinful life and bringing you into “communion” with Him, in a life of prayer.

Our recompence is in Christ’s hands and when we submit, we are then crucified with Him.

Edit to add on 3/30/2013

Hosea 5:15b-16:2

Thus says the Lord:
In their affliction, they shall look for me:
“Come let us return to the Lord,
For it is he who has rent, but he will heal us;
he has struck us, but he will bind our wounds.
He will revive us after two days;
on the third day he will raise us up,
to live in his presence.”

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Dust

jesus

I received this prayer card over this past weekend and pulled it out today and finally read it. I needed this today and hope it does someone else as much good to pray this prayer as it has done for me.

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Special thanks to CatholicPrayerCards.org for the photos and the prayers. You can purchase this card from them here

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Fortnight For Freedom In San Diego

St Joseph Cathedral, yesterday at the close of the Tour of the Seven Church walk. You can see, it was a successful day! The above photo is all the participants in the walk from Our Lady of the Rosary to St Joseph in Eucharist Procession which ended with Benediction.

Yesterdays Tour to the Seven Churches, Fortnight For Freedom prayer walk in opposition to the HHS Mandate was put together by the Brothers of the Little Oratory and myself in very little time, proving to be one great blessing for our Lord. I never expected this many souls to participate. Than you Lord Jesus Christ and Mama Mary. It was a miraculous day! We began at St. Patrick Catholic Church in San Diego at 7:30 AM for Mass. Our walkers were blessed and off we went.

We covered 10.75 miles of San Diego. Walking through neighborhoods with many diverse groups of people.

Setting off from St. Patrick’s in the North Park area of San Diego and headed to St. Didacus Catholic Church on the other side of North Park.

A few blocks from St. Didacus, even the fire trucks were bowing to our Holy Mother.

From St. Didacus, after a beautiful welcome and break in the parish hall, we set out for St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church.

Finally reaching St. John the Evangelist

I have to say, there was one amazing woman on this walk. She walked the entire distance and is eight months pregnant. She finished the entire walk without any complications, I am happy to say. May God bless that family and protect all the unborn.

From St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church we were off to St. Vincent De Paul on the other side of the Mission Hills area of San Diego.

Arriving at St Vincent De Paul! Only three churches left in the penance walk!

Off again! This time to Immaculate Conception in Old Town. Something I do have to share. Rather then walking the entire distance, We needed someone to carry water, people and supply’s who ran into trouble on the walk and that person was me. I ended up driving the entire route but keeping watch like a guardian angel. Being a runner with water and serving these fantastic souls. What was special, is not having ANY problem finding a parking place at any stop! Divine Providence is miraculous thing! Thank you Lord!

Walking to Old Town through Mission Hills.

Arriving in Old Town, just in back of Immaculate Conception.

In EVERY church we came to, we were able to stop in most of them and pray in front of the Tabernacle and were greeted by many Catholic Priests at every stop.

At Immaculate Conception, the statue of St. Juan Diego and Our Lady of Guadalupe. Pray for us!

After leaving Immaculate Conception we headed down San Diego Street to El Campo Santo Cemetery.

Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord and let your perpetual light shine upon them. May they and all the holy souls in purgatory rest in peace. Amen

After the prayers at El Campo Santo Cemetery, prayer all the way to Our Lady of the Rosary in Little Italy.

When we arrived at Our Lady of The Rosary in Little Italy, we were met with more participants. I had never been inside of the church and found it just BEAUTIFUL!

Viva Cristo Rey!

For the most part of the walk, we had about 20 to 30 active souls for the entire journey. When we arrived at OLR, close to 200 souls were added.

Were had a few moments to catch our breath, rest and take it easy. The Brothers of the Little Oratory were able to put on their red robes and get ready for the last leg of the walk. We prayed inside before leaving.

As we left, I was in awe. The length of the procession and the amount of souls participating could have stretched the five blocks to St Joseph Cathedral.

Arriving at St Joseph for Benediction

And a big Thank You to all! May God bless us and have mercy on us all! May our Leaders hearts be converted back to the understanding that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. May this nation end the practice of abortion immediately and understand that all life is the most precious gift from God. May this nation wake up and run back home to her first Love, being our Lord Jesus Christ. I ask this through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, to the Sacred Heart of my Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Thank you Lord! Thank you Abba Father! Thank you Most Holy Spirit! Thank you Mama Mary!

This is not the end…but only the beginning.

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I’m Awake

Romans 14:8 If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

I’m awake! I am truly awake in Christ. “You who dwell in the dust, wake up and shout for joy”

For so many years, be it my lack of understanding, or lack of wisdom, I finally realize who our Lord is. He is love and forgiveness. He is mercy and understanding. He is justice and fairness. For so many years, I thought that by my constant repenting of my past sins, that somehow our Lord would take that as doing more for Him when the reality is, He, through HIS sacrifice on the cross, and Resurrection has already done it all for us. Us as followers, need to understand that within each soul He lives, He dies, and is resurrected over and over again. Not many times in the same soul, but in each soul one time. My sacrifice is nothing as I live in Him. Sacrificing your life of sin is not a sacrifice but EXPECTED in order to gain friendship with Christ. It is the evil one who will make try and make you believe your “Sacrificing” something of your life of sin but the reality is, it was dust all along. It never belonged in the equalization of life in Christ in the first place.

It is only the evil one who makes our past sins a constant reminder of our failures. It it our Lord who takes our past failures and turns them into triumphs of glory by teaching us to overcoming them, looking past them and taking the soul to new heights by living in such a way as to overcome them by not repeating them. Forgetting them and leaving them in the dust. Therefor to enjoy the gift of LIFE he has given to us. TO share this LIFE with others.

“So the LORD God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, “Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life.” Eating dust is exactly what the evil one does and he tries to spit that dust into our faces, blinding us with our own faults. Making us unable to see past them and to enjoy the glory of Jesus Christ. When Satan keeps reminding you of your past sins, the ones you have already confessed, remind him of his future. After we know for a fact, we have sought our Lord for forgiveness and have repented.

“For this reason it says, “Awake, sleeper, And arise from the dead, And Christ will shine on you.” Ephesians 5:14

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Feed My Ducks

After Mass this morning, I took Sister Soledad to Home Depot and then to Rite Aid. My husband took our girls to the Padres game and gave me the day to think. I took a ride to an old fishing hole. It used to be a water reclamation area now turned into a recreation park, with 7 lakes. I packed my Shakespeare rod, purchased some worms and took my packed lunch. Turkey & cheese on pita bread. I walked to a picnic bench and sat down next to the water. There was a mommy duck with 9 brand new baby’s. Something told me to buy duck food while I was at the bait shop and I did. The mommy & baby’s were fed well with the cracked corn.

I prayed to our LORD Jesus Christ deeply.

I sat for a moment watching the beauty of God’s creation, eating my lunch and praying. As I looked around I noticed the park I had known for some time, had changed. The islands in the middle of the lake that used to be tropical were cut down. The palms were replaced with new trees. Almost sanitized and dry. On the bank of one of the islands, was a turtle that seems to be waving his flipper.

I prayed more intently and a flock of ducks came out of the water. Quacking up a storm. I heard that voice in my heart say, feed my ducks. I shared my lunch with some of them, then took a little walk. I walked to the bank and I took the worms I had purchased and tossed them into the water. Just before I did, I seen a big fish. I never tossed a line in, just the worms. Then I walked back to my car, packed it up and went to see our LORD in adoration.

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A Slow Walk Through Purgatory

I just broke into tears because I read something that I have been going through since 1998. I have NEVER been able to place it into this paragraph that has capture the essence of it all.

From the article: All Sin Is Disgusting

“If you want a truly Lenten experience, then pray earnestly that the Holy Spirit will reveal to you the damage that your sins have done. And then hold onto your butts, because it’s going to be a horrible ride. Don’t forget to pray for hope and healing at the same time, nothing hurts more than looking your own guilt in the face.”

It is a horrible ride. A very SLOW walk through purgatory. The ONLY THING that has kept my sanity throughout my entire experience is KNOWING it is REAL and so builds my faith and LOVE for Christ and I can only hold onto the mercy of God and pray continually.

Every second I am alive is spent in constant repentance leaving self behind, thinking only of others.

EDIT TO ADD:

It truly is: “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” A blessing in disguise

At least while I am here, I get reprieve! I can SEE His grace at work. I can see it in the Church! I can see Him in EVERYTHING! When the reprieves come, its a beautiful peace. Its a constant ride that doesn’t end until He says “It is finished”.

From the agony in the Garden: “”My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” he said to them. “Stay here and keep watch.” Mark 14:34

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‘Woman, Where Are They?’

I can not tell you how beautiful today’s Mass this morning has been for me. My words can never express the pure BEAUTY of the LOVE our Lord has for the soul. Today at mass, I could see our Lord, The Master Carpenter with the hammer in one of his firm hands and His chisel in His other, strike at the block of wood that is my soul, knocking off the sin or the weight that should not be there, forming me into who He is creating me to be.The sin splintering into fragments, not to be used for anything but dust to the floor, to be swept away.

How long I have carried this extra weight that should not be there. Added only by my accuser, the evil one. And where is he? Running to the hills at the sight of Our Lord Jesus Christ who has overcome him. Through my repentance, I can see now my Lord asks me also, ‘Woman, Where Are They? Go and do not sin any more.’

Today’s gospel reading: John 8:1-11 Christ and the adulterous woman

When God sheds light on the sinners conscious, the sinner repents. Fully! Or should I say, is given the GRACE to repent by God. This is mercy. When that light is shed, the accuser, or evil one, also see it and try to steal that light by adding darkness to it and TRY to seduce the soul into thinking it is not God’s mercy but His accusations and JUSTICE. Although God is Just, it is His MERCY He is offering first.

When our LORD wrote with His finger in the dust, “And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.” Our LORD wrote the law in the sand leaving the sins to the wind to blow away…

Our Lord here, was also giving the accusers the time to throw themselves at His feet and beg for mercy, because they had seen with their own “Conscious” the sins they also had committed. Rather then do so, they walked away, carrying the weight of their sins with them.

Where are the accusers of all our sins after we confess them? Constantly bringing them up in the conscience to NOT commit them again, is the Holy Spirit, so we keep an eye on the path to our Lord. Constantly bringing them up to TEMPT us, is the accusers. The ones who are guilty themselves who do not repent.

In my personal reflection on this scripture, I look around and can see no one accusing me anymore, but rather who was accusing me, and can finally stand up, and walk closer to Him again in repentance.

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A ‘Heroic Act’ Of Charity

From Catholic Tradition:
DEVOTION TO THE SOULS IN PURGATORY AND THE DEVOTION TO THE SACRED HEART

Among the devotions which should form a crown of honor around the Sacred Heart, St. Margaret Mary gives a privileged place to devotion to the Souls in Purgatory. She herself had an extraordinary devotion to these Souls and called them her good suffering friends. The revelations which she received about the sufferings of these Souls, about our Divine Lord’s tender love for them and His eager desire for their deliverance, of the great efficacy of the devotion to the Sacred Heart for their early release, and the fact that St. Margaret Mary, the apostle of the public devotion to the Sacred Heart, combined these two devotions so intimately in her own person, indicate that there is such a close connection between the two devotions that the devotion to the Souls in Purgatory may be said to form a part of the devotion to the Sacred Heart. Her extraordinary compassion for these suffering Souls may be said to be a share of the compassion of the Divine Heart for them; she called the devotion to the Sacred Heart the sovereign remedy for their relief.

It is a remarkable fact that our Divine Lord demanded of the two pioneers of the public devotion to His Sacred Heart an act of consecration of themselves to It, and a total donation in favor of the Souls in Purgatory of all the satisfactory merits of their lives and of all the prayers, Masses and good works offered for them after their death, and that they were the first to make this heroic offering.

St. Margaret Mary was in constant communication with the Souls in Purgatory; our Divine Lord allowed many privileged Souls among them to visit her, to tell her of their great sufferings and what it was that caused them, and to appear to her in glory after their deliverance. Towards the end of her life this became known outside the convent and people came to inquire from her about their deceased friends. While she usually declined to give any reply at the time of the inquiry, later on she sometimes declared that such a person was now in Heaven and exhorted the relatives of others to continue their prayers.

MARVELOUS EFFICACY OF THE DEVOTION TO THE SACRED HEART TO SUCCOR THE SOULS IN PURGATORY

“Would that people knew;’ writes St. Margaret Mary, “with what eagerness the poor Souls in Purgatory ask for this new remedy which is so powerful to relieve their sufferings. They call the Devotion to the Sacred Heart the ‘Sovereign remedy,’ and ask particularly for Masses in honor of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.”

ST. MARGARET MARY RECOMMENDS NOVENAS IN HONOR OF THE SACRED HEART FOR THE SOULS IN PURGATORY

Writing to Mother de Saumaise she says: “There is a Soul in Purgatory that I cannot comfort as much as I desire. She told me to apply to you and ask you to have three Masses said for her, and, in addition, to offer your Rosary and all the practices of our holy rule for nine days, and a general
Communion. She said that these things would greatly alleviate her pains and that she would not be ungrateful.”

ST. MARGARET MARY WAS ACCUSTOMED TO OFFER HER PRAYERS TO OUR BLESSED LADY THROUGH THE SOULS IN PURGATORY, AND IN A LETTER TO MOTHER GREFIÉ SHE EXPLAINS THE REASON:

“It is not through any want of confidence in Our Blessed Lady that we ask the help of the Holy Souls in Purgatory; it is in order that they may join their supplications to ours and offer them up to this Good Mother to obtain for us the continuation of her maternal assistance. By doing so we confess that, after God, it is from the Blessed Virgin that all good comes to us.”
Of all the practices for the relief of the Holy Souls, the most efficacious is that which is called “the Heroic Act of Charity,” which, as already stated, both St. Margaret Mary and Blessed Claude de la Colombiere made at our Divine Lord’s request. It consists in offering up in favor of the Souls in Purgatory all our satisfactory merits and all the indulgences we can gain during our lives, and all the prayers, Masses and good works offered for us after our death, thus reserving nothing for ourselves and trusting completely in the mercy of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. St. Margaret Mary makes reference to it in several of her letters.

PRAYER FOR THE HOLY SOULS

O Divine Heart of Jesus, grant I pray Thee, eternal rest to the Souls in Purgatory, the final grace to those who are about to die this day, true repentance to sinners, the light of faith to pagans, and Thy blessing to me and to all who are dear to me. To Thee, therefore, O Most Merciful Heart of Jesus, I commend all these souls, and in their behalf I offer unto Thee all Thy merits in union with the merits of Thy Most Blessed Mother and of all the Angels and Saints, together with all the Masses, Communions, prayers and good works which are this day being offered throughout Christendom.
O Most Holy Heart of Jesus, shower Thy blessings in abundant measure upon the Thy Holy Church, upon the Supreme Pontiff and upon all the clergy; to the just grant perseverance; convert sinners; enlighten unbelievers; bless our relations, friends and benefactors; assist the dying; deliver the Holy Souls in Purgatory; and extend over all hearts the sweet empire of Thy love. Amen.

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Realizing the Seriousness of Sin

I couldn’t agree more!

Realizing the Seriousness of Sin – Archbishop Timothy Dolan
Snip from the full story:

“We need to be shocked by our sins, as the Holy Father says, and also be shocked that Jesus keeps us in His hand. The Sacrament of Penance accomplishes this in a supreme way. We prepare for confession by examining our consciences – looking hard, as it were, at the wretchedness in our heart. Then we receive absolution of those sins, and through the ministry of the Church are invited once again to be shocked at the mercy of God!”

Link to : The Altar and the Confessional:
A Pastoral Letter on the Sacrament of Penance + Timothy M. Dolan

“It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Realizing the Seriousness of Sin

If the Holy Eucharist and the Sacrament of Penance are at the very heart of the Christian life, why is the latter neglected? It is a lamentable characteristic of the Church’s life in our time. Almost thirty years ago, soon to be Blessed Pope John Paul II convoked a Synod of Bishops addressed to the very topic of Reconciliation and Penance in the Mission of the Church. The penetrating analysis of the Holy Father’s subsequent apostolic exhortation retains its force today. He wrote in 1984 that, in an age when God is pushed to the margins, the awareness of our need for forgiveness will diminish, for “the loss of the sense of sin is thus a form or consequence of the denial of God: not only in the form of atheism but also in the form of secularism.”[4]

We do not only observe a diminishing sense of sin in the secular culture around us. We find it in the Church herself. Perhaps it is an over-reaction to an earlier period, as the late Holy Father suggests:

“Some are inclined to replace exaggerated attitudes of the past with other exaggerations: From seeing sin everywhere they pass to not recognizing it anywhere; from too much emphasis on the fear of eternal punishment they pass to preaching a love of God that excludes any punishment deserved by sin; from severity in trying to correct erroneous consciences they pass to a kind of respect for conscience which excludes the duty of telling the truth.”[5]

Fair enough. Not everything was perfect decades ago when most Catholics routinely went to confession – perhaps too routinely. But whatever problems existed in the 1950s are now a half-century in the past, and subsequent generations have grown up without any knowledge of whatever excesses may have existed. They have indeed grown up without what belongs to them as part of the patrimony as Catholics – the liberating, joyful experience of God’s mercy in the sacrament of penance.

We receive the gift of mercy to the extent that we realize our need for it. We desire forgiveness only if we acknowledge the seriousness of sin. The recently-beatified Cardinal John Henry Newman expressed the magnitude of sin with his characteristic literary force:

“The Catholic Church holds it better for the sun and moon to drop from heaven, for the earth to fail, and for all the many millions on it to die of starvation in extremest agony, as far as temporal affliction goes, than that one soul, I will not say, should be lost, but should commit one single venial sin, should tell one wilful untruth, or should steal one poor farthing without excuse.”[6]

Do we think today that Blessed John Henry Newman is right? How many of us would argue that opposite – that a little sin here and there is no big deal? How many, both inside and outside of the Church, argue that a little sin here and there is worth this technological advance, or that public policy goal, or is an acceptable means to some desired end? As someone jokingly observed to me, “It’s the Lamb of God, not our culture, that’s supposed to take away the sins of the world!”

We just heard this past Sunday, the First Sunday of Lent, the account of the temptations of the Lord Jesus. Satan offers to Jesus all the kingdoms of the world if He would just bow down in worship. A little “devil worship” and Jesus would have the whole world! Wouldn’t that be more efficient than God’s own plan – the passion, death, resurrection, ascension, Pentecost, and two thousand years of evangelization? But no sin is worth even all the kingdoms of the world.

Blessed Cardinal Newman is only one in a tradition of saints who have spoken with great ferocity about the horror we should have for sin – including our own beloved Saint Patrick, who emphasized the essential role of penance in his conversion of Ireland.

We can speak so boldly about the horror of sin because the good news is that the Lord Jesus did not just die for sin in general, but for my sins, and yours. So our horror at sin should be accompanied by a serene confidence that forgiveness is ours should we ask for it with true contrition. Together with Saint Paul we can give thanks that where sin increases, grace abounds all the more (cf. Romans 5:20)! We’re not “hung-up” on guilt and sin; no, we’re obsessed with God’s mercy.

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