Thursday, June 30, 2011

Feast of the Unknown Martyrs

Blessed Pope John Paul II said that the twentieth century saw more martyrs in the Christian faith than all the other centuries put together.* What are all their names? We know perhaps 1 in 10,000 who are actually recognized. Yet without each one of their witnesses they would not make up so many. The Blood of martyrs precedes a great infusion of faith in humanity. Our age now is experiencing the benefits of this. On June 30th the Church celebrates the first martyrs of Rome, the names of which we do not know, yet whose sacrifice continues to bear fruit.

Each of us is called to be a witness to Jesus Christ, to be as St Augustine said, an alter Christus, an other Christ, a living replica of the real thing. That is, when I encounter a Christian, I would hear the words of Christ, see the deeds of Christ, and feel the love of Christ. So many like to say nowadays, "Be yourself. Express yourself. Love yourself. And find yourself." This is a sure road to self preoccupation and certain unhappiness. BE CHRIST! EXPRESS CHRIST! LOVE CHRIST! AND FIND CHRIST!!!

Jesus must Found the Church in Each Soul

When the Lord Jesus said to St Peter, "You are Cephas (Rock in Aramaic) and upon this Rock I will build my Church, he was not only referring to the institution of the Papacy that would be perpetuated until the end of time, but to a communion to which each soul is called. To take into one's own interior this relationship with St Peter and each of his successor's faith, this is the task of each Christian. The Church must be founded in our hearts, and we must today and tomorrow and the day after that, continue to feed upon the prophetic truth that flows from the font of St Peter's successors. In this way we discover that Jesus Christ is fully alive, and that his teachings, while ancient, are also ever new, and meant to bear fruitfulness in our age for this time. May the Prayer of Our Lady, Queen of the Apostles and most zealous defender of the Christian faith, help us to listen attentively to the teachings of Christ that come to us from the apostles and their successors.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Greatest Gift a Priest can Give is not Eloquent Homilies, Detailed Plans, or Fine Wisdom but the Gift of Jesus

I know many amazing priests, who have been given great gifts of preaching, teaching, healing, administration, wisdom, prayer, and more, yet it must not be forgotten that the greatest gift he can give is Jesus himself in the Sacraments. All pales in comparison to the living Jesus Christ. Even if he gives this Gift in the poorest and most miserable of vessel of his humanity, no one except him can bring forth the Body and Blood of Christ in the Eucharist, and the obliteration of sin through the Mercy of God in the Sacrament of Confession.

St John the Baptist, Celebrating his birth as the New Dawn of Our Redemption

St John the Baptist is the only other person besides Our Lady and Our Lord whom we celebrate their birth. Why? St Augustine, St Jerome, and St John Chrysostom all said that this was because he was pre-sanctified of original sin from the womb of Mary by the Lord Jesus. Every other saint's birthday is their death - birth into eternity. St John's birth teaches us two things. First, in order to prepare the way of the Savior we must be without sin. Second, great penance and suffering is the only way authentic love is purified. Most people would rather talk about camel hair and crickets in his life than talk about the tenacious love of the Baptist, his adoration of Christ, or his great holiness. May St John teach us the arid way of desert love of God and neighbor.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Novelty of the Unfailing Love of Jesus Christ Shall Never Wear Off

Every moment, like a divine heartbeat echoing through the world, is renewed the supreme love of Jesus Christ for souls, especially for the little souls of the child-like who cry out to him. When a heart is broken open it can only then in a contrite humbled way, know this heartbeat newly every moment, and truly experience the supreme and unfailing love of Jesus Christ. Visit therefore frequently the Eucharistic Heart of Christ present in all the tabernacles of the world. Listen in silence and in waiting for the Heart beat of Christ, which is the sound of peace for your hungry soul.

Marriage is a Union Between One Man and One Woman - Anything Else is not Solid Ground

In today's readings for the Thursday of 12th week in Ordinary Time, Abraham agrees to conceive a child through the servant of his wife, Hagar. This was not God's plan. Adultery is never God's plan. Conceiving a child outside of the loving covenant between one woman and one man goes against the very image of the Trinity present in marriage and the life it brings.

It seems there is always a "good" motive for going against this covenant. With invitro-fertilization the couple would claim they want to be fruitful and love a child; in same-sex unions they claim they care for one another, in contraception they claim responsibility, in fornication they claim to be an act of love. Yet in all of these cases, a relationship is not being built on the solid rock of living in the image and likeness of the Most Holy Trinity which the one man - one woman union brings, which is can only be protected by a covenantal and indissoluble seal we call a sacrament.

Marriage once again needs to shine forth in the way God created it. In this way, we will be building our house on solid rock, and when the storms of history come, it will prove steadfast and enduring. May Our Lady, Queen of the Family renew the gift of the family for the building up of the world.

Contemplation is not so much about you gazing at God but realizing he is gazing at you

I find the need to be frequently reminded that prayer is not about what I do but what God is doing in me, especially when I find myself distracted, weary, dry, or inept in prayer. Rather than focussing on my devotion to him, or think that I have much faithfulness, or focus on my act of contemplating him - I remember that he is devoted to me, faithful to help me in my weakness, contemplating me in my forgetfulness. Prayer is work, but primarily the work of allowing God to be God and have his way in me. The glorious Virgin Mary exemplifies this, for in her Immaculate Heart we find God's garden, where he is permitted to dwell more perfectly than in the hearts of all the saints in heaven.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Making Disciples of Children - To them is given the Kingdom of My Father - Baptism is the moment they are called to sanctity

Today I brought 17 children, ages 8-9 years old, into the Church and we knelt on the altar rail and prayed to Jesus Christ, truly present in the tabernacle. We committed our lives to the Eucharistic Lord, sang him a song of adoration and then I heard one of the loudest sounds you can hear this side of heaven, the sound of children listening in silence to God before the tabernacle. No matter how many times I hear this silence, it always amazes me. It is the sound of Jesus' great jealousy and zeal for their souls, the willingness he is to manifest himself to them, and the hunger he has for their innocent love.

Afterward, we went into the parish hall, sang some more songs, played some games and then we walked two miles together back to our parochial school. On the way back I was surrounded by four young boys, and I heard a very innocent conversation. "Fr Sam, you are my bestest adult friend, after my grandad of course." "No, wait a minute, he is my bestest friend ever!" In a few hours we had become bestest friends. This is the way of children, innocence, trust, and th
e deep bond of friendship. If they bond this quickly with a priest who is willing to be one with them, how quickly they bond with THE Priest, Jesus Christ, who calls them to a holy friendship from the first moment of consciousness.

Priests find themselves a bit resistant these days in the formation of children as disciples of Jesus Christ. There are perhaps a few reasons for this. Some are afraid, and with good reason. Although Catholic priests are now among the safest statistically for children to be around, safer than married protestant clergy and most professions, who have a higher rate of abuse, priests are painted and smeared as the chief harm of children. Some priests would say that forming children as disciples is a waste of time because you can invest this time with their parents, who are the primary educators of their children. Yet others just plain don't know how to relate to children and find them too squeamish, spontaneous, or even annoying, and don't know how to get on their level.

Yet the truth of our faith is that the moment they are baptized, they are called to sanctity, not when they are aware, not when they are teen agers, not when they are capable of reading, but the moment they are baptized, this call is given them. For this reason, but especially because of the reason for their immediate trusting friendship with God, I find it difficult to ignore their need for evangelization and encountering their bestest friend of all, Jesus Christ.

Look at the children saints. I always ask kids, "Did you know that Jesus was once you
r age? Did you know that he lived in a family just like you? Did you know that he lived in perfect communion with his Father at all times? What does this mean for you?" Blessed Jacinta and Francisco of Fatima always remind me of this. "Don't say you are too young," the Lord told Jeremiah. What age is too young? Is there a time that is too young? My niece's first word out of her mouth was, "JESUS" because her grandma used to take her to all the images of Christ and say his name repeatedly.

Pope St Pius X understood this when he rescinded the age of first holy communion to age 7. He understood that "The prayer of the lowly pierces the clouds; it does not rest till it reaches its goal" (Sirach 35:17). Our Lady at Fatima told the children, "Because of your faith, the dogma of faith shall never depart from Portugal." Because of the prayers of children an entire nation was spared from dissent and heresy. Why then do we not invite children to become holy as their Father in heaven is holy.

Many people do not understand children. They do not see them as persons, as little men and women who have full capacity for prayer, intercession, holiness and discipleship. They see them as a kind of rub
ber ducky - a little person to appease. "If you behave I will give you some chocolate," turning the royal discipline of their interior into a kind of complacent bribery, to get them out of their hair.

Discipleship comes from discipline. Jesus, even as a tiny child, received the discipline of the Father, and this is the foundation of all discipleship - the imitation of Jesus' interior discipline. Therefore, the only way to make disciples of children is to live the interior discipleship of Jesus to the Father and let this flow out into our interactions with the least of the brethren.

This discipline is most present when we bring children to the mystery of the Most Holy Eucharist. Here they find their bestest friend, their Jesus, who is even littler, more humble, more innocent than they, and who understands and loves them, inspiring them mightily to the holiness to which God the Father calls them. My motto for bringing children to the Eucharistic King is simply, "GET
OUT OF THEIR WAY!!!" Do not hinder them. Let the little children come unto him and let him teach them personally. This is why Eucharistic adoration for children is so important. Here they are plugged in directly to the source and summit of their life. Here they are loved and accepted, here they can grow and mature in the grace of God and love for mankind.

Our Lady too loves children. She is the greatest defender of their innocence, their advocate before God, their protectress before men. She is like a mother bear defending her cubs. She carries all children's prayers to the throne of God as the means of bringing grace to all mankind and offers him their innocence for the foul sins of mankind.

May the prayers and intercession of Our Lady, Mother of God and the Mother of the littlest of children bring forth the fruitfulness of holiness for them and for all mankind.

Monday, June 20, 2011

A Priest's Interior Experience of Being a Spiritual and Eucharistic Father of Souls

As a priest I often find myself here, before the blessed Sacrament on behalf of God's people. It seems there is a special grace of joy connected with praying for the same people for whom I will one day have to render to God an account. The satisfaction and deep fulfillment present in making my spiritual children's concerns my own is unlike any other thing. I suppose I could compare it to the spousal satisfaction a man might feel in providing for the needs of his family, making his children's concerns their own, and being anxious for their good. On the other hand, it is not like that at all. It is entirely spiritual. Perhaps sometimes the spirit of the world and the mockery it has in the face of divine mysteries, the over emphasis it places on sexual gratification, the estrangement it has with the charism of celibacy, would try to relegate or downgrade this kind of spiritual paternity as if it were only analogous or ephemeral, some kind of second-rate abstraction that doesn't really pertain to reality. This is a lie. What kind of fatherhood is second-class if a person is born into eternal life who would otherwise end up in hell? Is that a lesser kind of fatherhood, merely spiritual? It is one of the most substantial and real things in the universe.

The Most Holy Eucharist that a priest is the summit, source, and center of a priest's spiritual fatherhood. This Father's Day I experienced this in an entirely different way. As I was saying the sacred words of consecration I had the experience for the first time ever of being in loco Dei Patris, in the place of God the Father, according to an ancient expression of the Church Fathers, both east and west. I understood for the first time that when a priest says, "this is my body...this is my blood" God the Father himself personally steps into that moment and directly speaks his Word, as if he were saying,
This is my consubstantial, con-natural, co-eteral, co-equal Son, one in Being with me, sent to you now here in this place and time in a way he has never been given before or will be given again as a manifestation of my unique love for you, of that portion of my love that is peculiarly yours. For I so love you people gathered here that I give my only begotten Son to you again made present so that you, here and now, will not perish but have eternal life.
It was, understandably, a very moving experience to celebrate Mass today. I felt the Fatherhood of God in a way I never have before and realized that the greatest moment of very real first-rate, first-class, supersubstantial, Fatherhood in giving the Son to the world, to this world, this parish, these people, here and now as a specific and altogether unique manifestation of God the Father for these children of his. Also at the moment of communion, especially when I place the host on the tongue of one of the people, it is like very tender feeding of children the eternal God, as though you would feed an infant the sustenance that will give them life and make them strong. I do not know how to describe the love of God the Father at that moment of communion. It is no surprise that when Jesus would touch people he would speak paternally, as if the Father was actually speaking through him, "Daughter, your faith has healed you" (Lk 7:50; Lk 8:48; Mk 5:34). I am sure that if people have the proper dispositions, no small healing is apportioned to them given straight out of the love of God the Father.

Another moment that the Fatherhood of God is very present in the life of a priest is the experience of loosening the bonds of sin, especially mortal sin, the kind that would otherwise make them orphans of their eternal Father. Is this fatherhood just a kind of happy feeling, merely a parable, sign, an idea, a theological figment or theoretical phantasm? No. It don't get any more real than that. This is even more true of helping a person die after giving them the last sacraments, the apostolic pardon, and the final commendation. It is like helping a child fall asleep so that they may wake up in eternity. Several times this past month people died only a few hours after I anointed them.

Recently God has given me charge of a few persons in spiritual direction. This too for me is an intense encounter with the Father's love. I was offering mass for my spiritual directees lately and I saw in my mind a bouquet of beautiful flowers that I would present to God at the end of my life. Of course I know that God is the real spiritual director of their souls and he is the only one responsible for beautifying them, but he has given priests to be instruments in his garden, like a spade or hoe and probably a little manure of their own humanity. It seems that Jesus not only invested extra time in seeking out the lost, but also in the advanced formation of those who would serve others. I frequently hear these people say, "thank you for making the time." What they may not know is that there is a very powerful grace of sanctity for the priest is in responding to the needs of God's children, and a priest is very much nourished by gifting himself to others, being spent and consumed for souls.

Wait a minute, don't worry when you hear those words of consuming or spending his life. Undoubtedly some will say, "You should also rest." Yes, Jesus himself turned away from the poor, left the hungry unfed, the sick unhealed, the lost untaught, and went to the Father to speak to him in private. I am so grateful he gave me this example, for it is in returning from contemplation of the Father's glory that a priest has any capacity to be a man for others, so in turning away momentarily, he is also serving them better.

In prayer too, there is the growth of the fundamental inner identity of the priest, what Blessed Pope John Paul II called in his Exhortation on the Priesthood (Pastores Dabo Vobis), Pastoral Charity, or fatherly love. Cardinal Tuan called it a "surge of paternal generosity." Fr James Flanagan, one of my own chief spiritual fathers and the founder of my community claims that God the Father is "a burst of joyful generosity," which takes a hold of a priest's whole being. It seems that in the Sacrament of Holy Orders God the Father takes a ray of his Fatherhood and lets it shine out of a man for the people to whom he is sent.

May the prayers and intercession of Our Lady, beloved Daughter of the God Father, bring forth in the hearts of priests the supersubstantial and eucharistic Fatherhood of God for his people.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Homily for Trinity Sunday (MP3 Audio) A People Made One in the Unity of the Trinity

If you have trouble playing this, click here.

"That the Church may shine forth as a people made one in the unity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit" (St Cyprian's commentary on the Pater Noster) - this is the work of our present time. At least that is what Blessed Pope John Paul II said.

But how? We must recognize with faith the Son of the Father by the power of the Holy Spirit. The Mass is the place where we can adjust or vision and learn how to recognize him, so that when we go back into our lives we will never stop recognizing him everywhere.

Once I was teaching a class and I asked a little boy who is the Trinity. He said, you can't understand it. It is a mystery. You many not be able to understand, but you are called to love the Blessed Trinity.

Our families are the chief place where we live out this mystery, loving one another as God loves us. In our time we have need of defending the family from attacks such as same-sex unions, contraception, abortion, embryonic stem cell research, human cloning, and more.

Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity helps us live the grace of being a trinitarian family and helps us to protect the family as an institution. May her prayers and intercessions help us be a people made one in the unity of the Trinity.

St Teresa of Avila Reminds us Who is the Most Powerful

One of my favorite quotes of St Teresa of Avila is when she speaks about how sick and tired she is about all the people crying out as if fascinated with "the devil, the devil, the devil, what about God, God, God!! Why don't you be fascinated with his power, his glory, his victory." However cunning may the serpent be, he is still just a stupid little snake, who is crushed readily by the Mighty and Merciful God and those who trust in his Name. May Our Lady bring about a new cohort of warriors, ready, as St Louis De Montfort says, to destroy the kingdom of satan with one hand and build the Kingdom of Christ with the other. O Maria, Mater Dei et Mater nobis, tota pulchra est, ora pro nobis!

Cliff Zarsky, Pro-Life Attorney of Corpus Christi, Texas, Dies after a Fruitful Life of Advocacy

Cliff Zarsky was a man of vision. This is why he was able to present himself to police officers at the local abortion clinic and tell them that they were doing their job if they would arrest him for trespassing. His real intention was to have a legal platform for presenting a very plausible plan for the reversal of Roe v. Wade. My greatest memory of him was seeing him stand out in the harsh texas sun, praying the rosary for the mothers who were not protected by unjust laws that he was ready to give every ounce of his strength to correct.

Cliff, may you experience LIFE eternal and the dignity and honor for which you had fought so nobly. May you be greeted at the gates of paradise by the babies you worked so hard to protect.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Mourning the Loss of Therese Perez, Great Pro-Life Advocate in Corpus Christi, Texas

You don't know quite how much a person changed the lives of so many until they are gone. Therese Perez died on June 17, 2011, at 3pm. She was the head of Hope House, a shelter for pregnant women in Corpus Christi, Texas. She had brought religious sisters in to care for the children. She invited me there to baptize the babies and counsel the mothers. You could even say she was responsible for Planned Parenthood leaving town, after she spear-headed the movement to defund them of $70,000 the city was paying from tax payers pockets. She also had a yearly youth meeting called "Truth Jam" where young people learned about life issues.

Besides all of this she was a real mother. Anyone who approached her felt it - love. She was so good at sidewalk counseling at the local abortuary because every single young woman who came into her presence felt loved. I remember one woman, who walked away from the abortuary held in her arms after seeing Therese's gentle smile and hearing her say, "Honey, you don't have to do this. We love you and we are hear to help you."

Therese, you will be sorely missed. May you be greeted at your eternal reward by the choir of multitude children who never were born yet for whom you were their voice and a constant advocate.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Store Up Treasure in Heaven - Where your Treasure is, there Also Will your Heart Be

In today's readings for Mass we hear, "Store up treasure in heaven. Where your treasure is, there your heart will be." There is only one thing that remains in heaven: charity. That is why it is not just a quaint expression of St Lawrence, the deacon of Rome, "The poor will carry your wealth to heaven for you." What it means is that when you give to those in need, if you do it with sincerity and no desire to be recognized, it is converted to charity, and you are actually storing up treasure in heaven. This is why the Father's of the Church have the expression, "By almsgiving you may save your soul."

Also it is important to not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. We say this not only to purify our intention of giving, to give discreetly, but also because of the great battle that takes place when you give alms, because it may be an act of salvation. The devil, on the left hand of God, disguised in very well thought out excuses, may try to stop the right intention of giving because he knows you are giving to Christ himself in disguise, and it just might save you. We know that at the end of our lives Jesus may say, "you fed me" or "you did not feed me." At that time the disguises will be gone and we will have either fed Jesus in the poor or fed the devil in our excuses and we will follow to heaven or hell whomever in this life we have aligned ourselves.

Do not think that you must give money. Even if you give that without giving the most important gift, yourself, anything else you give is of little value. If someone asks you for something, give yourself - i.e. your time, concern, love, and then whatever else you are able to give that may help them.

Be Not Afraid of Death - Practice Dying with Frequent Reception of the Sacraments

Since He knows that we would be afraid of death, our good Jesus has left us a way to practice it - frequent reception of the Sacraments. Although confession is the tribunal of mercy, you can go as if it were your last moment, confessing all that you can possibly remember, that might be an obstacle between you and God. Holy Communion too is an opportunity to receive as if it were your first, last, and only communion. In this way you may practice that final encounter with God. Also beneficial is to pray frequently the prayer of St Louis De Montfort, "My Jesus, I adore you and I accept whatever death you permit me to die and whatever judgment you give me."

Very Impressed with the Update of the Vatican Website

The Vatican has updated its official website: Some new features are: immediate accessibility to the Holy Father's writings and works, a video live streaming site for papal events and audiences, a greater representation of the full offices of the Vatican. The Holy Father said in his message for the world day of communication:
"The increased availability of the new technologies demands greater responsibility on the part of those called to proclaim the Word, but it also requires them to become become more focused, efficient and compelling in their efforts."
Well done Vatican digital media team!

The Greatest Sorrow of the Bleeding Heart of Christ for Souls is not Sin but Apathy

When I hear confessions, I often see the face of Christ as he lay dying on the Cross weeping tears of blood for souls. However, the greatest sorrow for the Heart of Christ and for those who work close to his Heart, is not sins committed, for the blood of Christ always springs joyful hope eternal, but the terrifying unwillingness or apathy to be free of them.

Priest, Fellow Gardener in God's Garden, Beautifying Souls

A priest is a worker in the garden of God trying to beautify souls through tilling of instruction, encouragement of supports, correction of weeding, and watering of Sacraments. Just hope he doesn't put too much manure by his own weakness.

Jesus Patiently Waits For Us to Return Home to the Abode of His Sacred Heart

The Sacred and Eucharistic Heart of Christ is consumed with a burning thirst for souls. With insatiable longing he knocks on every heart, visiting our poverty like a beggar begging from the poor with parched lips for a scrap of love. Do you have any love to offer? He is mightily grateful for your love.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Pope calls Elijah, Model Intercessory Prayer to Obliterate Idolatry from Human Hearts

Just because it is called "prayer" doesn't mean it is Christian. The Holy Father pointed this out in his most recent Wednesday Audience:

This is a confrontation, the Bishop of Rome said, that in reality "is between the Lord of Israel, the God of salvation and of life, and a mute and empty idol that can do nothing, neither good nor evil."

It is also a confrontation, he said, "between two completely different ways of turning to God and ways of prayer."

Some Authentic Catholic prayer is offering Christ to the Father through the Holy Spirit. This is the end of every collect in the Roman liturgy, and it ought to be our pattern of our personal prayer. Our prayer really should simply be the extension of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, offering the precious blood of Jesus to the Father in our hearts, and like the Immaculate Heart of Mary, entering zealously into the prayer of Jesus Christ Crucified, begging God for the salvation of all mankind.

Other stuff, crystals, self-centered imagination meditations, goofy made up rituals where you burn things, spin around three times like a dog chasing its tail, with balloons or streamers - RUBISH! It is not Christ. Better to pray like Elijah and ask the Lord to cleanse the Church, the New Israel of false prophets and idolatrous ways of praying that actually may be acts of self-idolatry.

Here is the Youtube video of the Holy Father.

Some Make the Church's Liturgy More Beautiful even after they are Dead

Tomorrow, Friday, June 17, 2011, at Noon in Virgin Mother of Good Counsel Parish in Hythe, Kent, UK, I will be offering for the first time in public the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Catholic Latin Rite Mass. It will also be offered the following Friday, June 24th, at the same time. It will be offered for a woman who gave a bequest to the Church in her will with the stipulation that the usus antiquior Mass be offered publicly for her soul.

Some people can even make the Church's liturgy more beautiful after they are dead.

The Our Father Contains All Prayers of Every Human Heart

In today's readings for mass, Jesus gives us the Our Father. This prayer contains "the 7 fundamental petitions of the human heart" (St Augustine), because it is the prayer of Jesus himself, who,
"For by His incarnation the Son of God has united Himself in some fashion with every man." (Vatican II, Gaudium et Spes 22)
Therefore when we truly offer the Our Father we are really offering Jesus Christ to the Father, we are offering the whole Christ, his life death and resurrection. It could even be said that the Our Father is the very extension of Calvary and the Eucharistic Sacrifice, for all of the prayers and sighs of Christ on the Cross are summed up in this prayer.

Marriage is a Sanctuary that Needs to Filled with Prayer

Just as the Church prays to Jesus and Jesus prays for the Church, so spouses must immerse their beloved in the balm of intercession. Pope Benedict said in his recent Wednesday Audience:
"Dear newlyweds," he said, "I offer the heartfelt wish that you learn to pray together, so that your love be ever truer and lasting."

Discipline Flows from Discipleship - We Practice the Interior Discipline of Jesus to the Father

Discipline flows from discipleship, the Holy Spirit gives us the interior life of Jesus who lives the discipline of the Father. The Cross seems harsh but leads us to peace. "All discipline seems harsh at the time it is administered but later bears the fruit of a peaceful life" (Heb 12:11).

Christian Life is Not Possible without the Holy Spirit

Everything Jesus said and did, his words, deeds, his sufferings and trials, all seem impossible to imitate, that is, unless you have the Holy Spirit. At Pentecost the Spirit "takes from Jesus and declares to us" that Jesus may live his life and die his death in us. Jesus uses our lives to adore the Father through the Holy Spirit.

Authentic Love Washes Other's Feet - Bend Low with the Master

Authentic, heartfelt love of God washes away all caprice, duplicity, and neutralizes the leaven of a critical spirit. If you wish to remove from your heart the tendency to judge others, humble yourself before God who is working in their lives and ask him for the inner strength to bend down with him to wash their feet. Where the Master is there the servant shall be.
Sometimes I think my only work is simply reintroducing God the Father in people's lives. Who is it our hearts ache for, for whose love, approval, and affirmation are we thirsting? Maybe I am just a mad prophet running around all day crying out, "Stop seeking water from dry wells and Go to your living Father!"

A Priest lives Espoused to the Church Finding Joy not in himself

A priest lives espoused to the Church, finding immeasurable joy in existing for her and not himself, taking her children to himself and carrying them before God in prayer, making their concerns his own, delighting in their joys, heeding their sorrows, and building them up tirelessly in love. And I tell myself daily, "What a privilege it is to serve God's people!"

A Priest's Heart - A Refuge for the Weary

A priest's heart, like the Great Heart of Christ, is to be a refuge for those who are tired, hurt, broken, and in need of peace. He bears in his soul consolations for the afflicted, words of kindness for the wounded, and the love from heaven that enkindles hope, goodness, and the sure sign that God's Fatherhood brings eternal freedom.

No Greater Joy of Reconciling Men to God

I cannot say if it is humanly possible to know a greater joy as a priest than reaching down into the pit of someone's personal hell, where they believe themselves to be trapped, lost, & alone, and then pulling them out into freedom and revealing to them the unfailing kindness and glorious face of Our Father. Why O Lord would you chose such a poor man and sinner to do this work?

Fire or Water

Human freedom is a mystery: "The Lord leaves us in the hand of our own counsel and we may stretch out our hands to fire or water" (Prvb). What more does it take for us to turn to the light of God, when the Lord of All came in person to suffer and die for us that we be convinced of his goodness?

Divine Attraction - Childlike Littleness

God is not impressed by our show of piety, our good deeds or virtue. You might as well present him with some polluted rags. He is attracted by littleness, dependence, and most especially when he looks into our souls and sees his beloved and afflicted child, Jesus Christ crucified. Offer therefore at all times on the altar of your heart the sacrifice of calvary.

Sacramental Sanctity

Baptism made your body a temple of the Holy Spirit and your heart an altar - never meant to be left vacant but created for the very Sacrifice of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist to be offered with every beat of your heart. Many have desecrated their temple and blackened their altar. Be reconsecrated by the Sacrament of Confession, and offer the sweet sacrifice of the Blood of the Lamb.

Unity in Adoration

‎"Human life finds its unity in the adoration of the one God" (CCC 2114). Not only nations but persons will find integral unity of the their thoughts, feelings, and desires are made one by worshiping the Creator. Make therefore your whole day a kind of extension of Eucharistic adoration and occupy yourself in praising God's majesty.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Ascended Life in Christ into the Father

It is not enough to know Jesus and the Holy Spirit, the paschal mystery and the mystery of each person's life is not complete until it goes with Christ back to the Father. Abba is our strength, our hope, our confidence. May Our Lady, daughter of the Father help us know the Mystery of the Father and of his love.