Tag Archives: Roman Catholic

You’re Embarrassing Me!


fr bill

 

Jesus. Get off the cross. You’re embarrassing me!

A friend of mine lived in the country. He had kids and they were growing up and one of his daughters got involved in ranching. Raising cattle. She was just getting started in this work and she was put in charge of moving a herd of cattle.
She asked her father to help because he was an experienced rider and he was also a veterinarian. And he was her Dad.

Moving the herd happened in the dark of night, just before dawn. A dozen or so riders had instructions from this young woman and the move began. They walked or trotted their horses by the edge of the herd to keep them together and going at a speed they could control.

My friend’s horse was trotting along fine, then tripped and flung my friend down a slope onto his back. He called out for help and a couple of riders came by. He was trying to tell if he was hurt, and his daughter rode up.

She leaned down from her horse and scolded him in a whisper. “Dad. Get up. You’re embarrassing me!”

I love that story. That girl had so much on her mind and wanted this job to go well so badly that when her father got thrown from his horse she could only think about how it would affect the job.

When St Peter heard Jesus say that He would be killed for what He was doing, Peter said, “No!”. In one way Peter said, “Be quiet, Jesus, You’re embarrassing me.” Peter was saying “I want things to go this way: more success, bigger crowds. Don’t talk of failure.”

What do we do when things go wrong? What do we do when there’s pain? How about when suffering goes from short term to long term? God wants us to deal with suffering. It’s a part of life. When we think we can control our lives, we make sure suffering is not part of it. Suffering makes us look bad. It ruins our image. It feels awful.

What do we do?

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross was a psychologist who worked with dying people. She came up with an understanding of how people cope with having an illness that will probably end in death. Death is the biggest way of all that things go wrong. Most of us see it as the worst thing that will happen. The biggest embarrassment.

There are five stages people go through when things go terribly wrong. To keep this short, I will say only the first and the last. The first is denial. “No! This is not happening!” The last one is acceptance. As Jesus put it, “Not My will, Father, but Yours be done.”

Any time things go wrong we can bet our first reaction is “No!”. If we are believers, if we pray, and ask for help, that begins to change. We’ll get to “Your will, not mine be done.”

There’s a reason to accept suffering, any kind. Some day we’ll have to accept death. In the mean time we have to accept things like where we were born, how we were treated as children, what we look like, the traffic is, our jobs, our health, you name it.

What do we see when we look in the mirror? Do we see our failures? Blemishes? The ways we’re not good enough?

What do we feel when we enter a room full of people? Unworthy? That we have to hide who we are or what we did? That our jobs aren’t good enough or our kids aren’t bright enough or our bank accounts aren’t big enough?

If we feel that kind of embarrassment about ourselves, we try to hide. Or we look for something to cover it. Some pleasure. Some fantasy. We drink, we spend, we judge others. Anything to make us feel less embarrassed about who we are.

These things that deny the pain, that distract or cover over our unhappiness actually do work. The world is filled with ways of denying reality. They do take away the pain.

What they don’t do — what they cannot do — is heal us. Denial never heals. Never. It only conceals.

God wants healing for us. Healing comes with acceptance. Healing comes when we accept reality as it is, not as we’d like it to be. As soon as I can accept my life as it is, I find freedom. The things I was afraid of lose power.

We all can spend a lot of time and energy covering up our embarrassment. We hope people will like us, and include us and respect us.

Hasn’t that been what some people in the Church did when the sins of priests were reported? Deny. Hide. Don’t families do the same with the things they don’t want known? Businesses? Yup. Everybody does it.

There’s a saying in Italian: “bella figura”. It means “beautiful face”. When we put the preservation of the beautiful face above the truth, we lie. We deny. “Dad, you’re embarrassing me.”

There was nothing beautiful about Jesus on the cross. Nothing. Horrible to look at. Horrible, but three days later, He rose. He filled the world with glory. It’s the glory that comes from acceptance. From trust and honesty.

When we face reality instead of denying it, we pass through suffering into freedom. At first the truth embarrasses us. Then it sets us free.

Via Fr. Bill Murphy

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Novena For Healing The Church


St M L

Please, just stop and pray.

Via St. Mary of the Lake – Please click HERE to join!

Mundelein Seminary at the University of Saint Mary of the Lake is launching a nine-day Novena for the Healing of Our Church from Friday, Sept. 7 through Saturday, Sept. 15 to unite Catholics in prayer for healing, justice and hope in light of the ongoing crisis within the Catholic Church.

The public is invited to attend nine special Masses to be held at parishes throughout the Archdiocese of Chicago. You can also participate digitally by filling out the form below to receive the novena prayers via email.

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Peace


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Yesterday

The Fruit Of Righteous Anger

Today

Silence is Christ’s response to lies, divisiveness, pope says at Mass

Always

The pope, sex abuse, and the story no one is talking about

In Christ Jesus, our LORD

Please, in your charity, also read:

A Carmelite Response

 

 

 

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Pure JOY Through Suffering


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The 21’st of September, 1996, was the day I realized I was about to lose my dad to lung cancer, and he entered eternal life on the feast of St. Padre Pio, two days later. It was the day I would come to realized, I was adopted by our Lord. Suffering brings JOY.

At his side, on his bed, I said out loud, I need to change my life. The life I was living, to quote our Holy Father, was “kaka”.

Anyway, someone had posted this tweet and it stirred in me. I remember. I remember it well. From death, to new life. Today, I sing.

Notice the picture in this post: A Leopard In The Well and reflect on what our LORD has done.

Repent and believe

Ephesians 2 

St. Padre Pio, pray for us.

The song? The song? “September” is a song by the American band Earth, Wind & Fire. It was recorded during the sessions for their album I Am

“Do you remember
The 21st night of September?
Love was changin’ the minds of pretenders
While chasin’ the clouds away
Our hearts were ringin’
In the key that our souls were singin’
As we danced in the night, remember
How the stars stole the night away, oh, yeah yeah yeah”

 

St. Matthew Prayer

O Glorious St. Matthew, in your Gospel you portray Jesus as the longed-for Messiah who fulfilled the Prophets of the Old Covenant and as the new Lawgiver who founded a Church of the New Covenant.
Obtain for us the grace to see Jesus living in his Church and to follow his teachings in our lives on earth so that we may live forever with him in heaven.

Edit to add:

As I was heading to bed just now, I heard music coming from outside… Someone finally gets it… The echo of September, somehow, somewhere. Thank you Lord.

 

 

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Trusting The Spouse Of Our Souls


Wedding

When trust is broken, as a wife, I come to understand that the LORD is in this Marriage Trinity, and it is He who is the Spouse of our souls, the Bridegroom who NEVER breaks the trust. Who does not stray. As my husband may through temptation, I adhere to the Lord even when my husband may stray, praying for his repentance! Praying for his return.

Such as it is the same, for the shepherds who stray.

I ponder Psalms, chapter 116

I kept faith, even when I said,

“I am greatly afflicted!”

I said in my alarm,

“All men are liars!”

How can I repay the LORD

for all the great good done for me?

I will raise the cup of salvation

and call on the name of the LORD.

I will pay my vows to the LORD

in the presence of all his people.

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A Pinch Of Salt


salt

“You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” Matthew 12:42

I ponder the salt of Wisdom which preserves the richness of our faith.

 St. Augustine (Confessions I.11)

17. Even as a boy I had heard of eternal life promised to us through the humility of the Lord our God condescending to our pride, and I was signed with the sign of the cross, and was seasoned with His salt even from the womb of my mother, who greatly trusted in You. You saw, O Lord, how at one time, while yet a boy, being suddenly seized with pains in the stomach, and being at the point of death — You saw, O my God, for even then You were my keeper, with what emotion of mind and with what faith I solicited from the piety of my mother, and of Your Church, the mother of us all, the baptism of Your Christ, my Lord and my God. On which, the mother of my flesh being much troubled — since she, with a heart pure in Your faith, travailed in birth Galatians 4:19 more lovingly for my eternal salvation — would, had I not quickly recovered, have without delay provided for my initiation and washing by Your life-giving sacraments, confessing You, O Lord Jesus, for the remission of sins. So my cleansing was deferred, as if I must needs, should I live, be further polluted; because, indeed, the guilt contracted by sin would, after baptism, be greater and more perilous. Thus I at that time believed with my mother and the whole house, except my father; yet he did not overcome the influence of my mother’s piety in me so as to prevent my believing in Christ, as he had not yet believed in Him. For she was desirous that You, O my God, should be my Father rather than he; and in this You aided her to overcome her husband, to whom, though the better of the two, she yielded obedience, because in this she yielded obedience to You, who so commands.

18. I beseech You, my God, I would gladly know, if it be Your will, to what end my baptism was then deferred? Was it for my good that the reins were slackened, as it were, upon me for me to sin? Or were they not slackened? If not, whence comes it that it is still dinned into our ears on all sides, Let him alone, let him act as he likes, for he is not yet baptized? But as regards bodily health, no one exclaims, Let him be more seriously wounded, for he is not yet cured! How much better, then, had it been for me to have been cured at once; and then, by my own and my friends’ diligence, my soul’s restored health had been kept safe in Your keeping, who gave it! Better, in truth. But how numerous and great waves of temptation appeared to hang over me after my childhood! These were foreseen by my mother; and she preferred that the unformed clay should be exposed to them rather than the image itself.

Preserving in prayer

A Prayer for the Preservation of Faith – St. Clement Hofbauer

O my Redeemer,
will that dreadful time ever come,
when but few Christians shall be left
who are inspired by the spirit of faith,
that time when Thine anger shall be provoked
and Thy protection shall be take away from us?
Have our vices and our evil lives
irrevocably moved Thy justice to take vengeance,
perhaps this very day,
upon Thy children?
O Thou, the beginning and end of our faith,
we conjure Thee,
in the bitterness of our contrite and humbled hearts,
not to suffer the fair light of faith
to be extinguished in us.
Remember Thy mercies of old,
turn Thine eyes in mercy upon the vineyard
planted by Thine own right hand,
and watered by the sweat of the Apostles,
by the precious blood of countless Martyrs
and by the tears of so many sincere penitents,
and made fruitful by the prayers
of so many Confessors and innocent Virgins.
O divine Mediator,
look upon those zealous souls
who raise their hearts to Thee
and pray ceaselessly
for the maintenance of that most precious gift of Thine,
the true faith.
We beseech Thee,
O God of justice,
to hold back the decree of our rejection,
and to turn away Thine eyes from our vices
and regard instead the adorable Blood
shed upon the Cross,
which purchased our salvation
and daily intercedes for us upon our altars.
Ah, keep us safe in the true Catholic and Roman faith.
Let sickness afflict us,
vexations waste us,
misfortunes overwhelm us!
But preserve in us Thy holy faith;
for if we are rich with this precious gift,
we shall gladly endure every sorrow,
and nothing shall ever be able to change our happiness.
On the other hand,
without this great treasure of faith,
our unhappiness would be unspeakable and without limit!
O good Jesus, author of our faith,
preserve it untainted within us;
keep us safe in the bark of Peter,
faithful and obedient to his successor
and Thy Vicar here on earth,
that so the unity of Holy Church may be maintained,
holiness fostered,
the Holy See protected in freedom,
and the Church universal extended
to the benefit of souls.
O Jesus, author of our faith,
humble and convert the enemies of Thy Church;
grant true peace
and concord to all Christian kings and princes
and to all believers;
strengthen and preserve us in Thy holy service,
so that we may live in Thee and die in Thee.
O Jesus, author of our faith,
let me live for Thee and die for Thee.

Amen.

(St. Clement Mary Hofbauer, C.Ss.R.)

 

 

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Cling To Our LORD


vine-and-branches-light

In times as this, which we have seen and lived through as the Catholic Church, I have come to understand the meaning of total detachment from what we hold dear, and total attachment to our LORD and what He deems holy, right an just.

It is our Lords Church. His Bride. Unmoved by political, social or worldly ambitions, but only that which is Holy, Perfect and True.

Now is a great time to purge oneself of any worldly attachment, and cling to our Lord. Knowing that man will always fail, and our Lord has never failed, but has already won the race.

There has always been souls in the church, even in high positions, who were tempted to worldly ambitions. Its nothing new. Look at how St. Francis was called and what he was called to do. Look at St. Teresa Avila, how she was called by our LORD to reform the Carmelites. It happens. What needs to be done, is a serious cleaning of self, allowing our Lord to convert the hearts of us all. Great Saints are born in the Church amidst the purging of the darkness. The choice is there for all to make. Do I adhere to our Lord? Or do I adhere to myself? “But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”

Be not afraid. Return to your FIRST Love, who is our LORD, repent and believe in the Gospel. Jesus Christ is LORD. Pray for the church. Pray for conversions and pray without ceasing, trusting in our Lord, completely.

Simon Peter answered him, “Master, to whom shall we go? 
You have the words of eternal life. 
We have come to believe
and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God.”

Psalms, chapter 146

Hallelujah!

Praise the LORD, my soul;

I will praise the LORD all my life,

sing praise to my God while I live.

I

Put no trust in princes,

in children of Adam powerless to save.

Who breathing his last, returns to the earth;

that day all his planning comes to nothing.

II

Blessed the one whose help is the God of Jacob,

whose hope is in the LORD, his God,

The maker of heaven and earth,

the seas and all that is in them,

Who keeps faith forever,

secures justice for the oppressed,

who gives bread to the hungry.

The LORD sets prisoners free;

the LORD gives sight to the blind.

The LORD raises up those who are bowed down;

the LORD loves the righteous.

The LORD protects the resident alien,

comes to the aid of the orphan and the widow,

but thwarts the way of the wicked.

10 The LORD shall reign forever,

your God, Zion, through all generations!

Hallelujah!

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