(I am criss-crossing between a Conference and another Prayer Meeting this weekend. Those of you who have complained that I am overdue for the second installment of the Rules of Regency are now completely right. I get home late tomorrow afternoon. If I am worn out, I won’t put it up tomorrow. But Job One on Monday will be to get that up. Except for attending morning Mass, I will do nothing else before I have finished and posted that piece.
In the comments section, I have started getting some notes from Islamic apologists, explaining that Islam is a religion of peace and there is no violence in it. I have deleted them thus far. If you want to make a case on how Jihadists are mutilating Islam, I will be glad to print it. Even better, if you decide to offer real discussion of how to stop the violence flowing from Jihad, I will love to print it. But if the sum of your point is to ask people, on violence in the name of Islam, “Who are you going to believe; me or your own eyes?” it is not helpful and I am not interested in it. If you can’t acknowledge the facts on the ground when every week several major atrocities against ‘infidels’ are committed, your comments may be passionate, but they are not helpful.
I am also going to tighten up on comments that are based in mere assertions without evidence, leaning towards conspiracy theories. This, if you say that some holy Bishop – or even some dicey Bishop – is a freemason plant or whatever I will no longer patiently (or even tersely) argue the point with you. I will just delete the comment.
There are also many new readers here, some who like to pretend to an erudition they don’t have to make definitive statements based on some elementary reading that they have done – and often misconstrued, even then. We are a site welcoming to all of good will. Some of the most breathtakingly beautiful comments come from those of the simplest faith. We also have top professionals in almost every field here, both secular and religious. If you want to express an opinion, ask a question, share a story, it all helps build this little community up. Use the readings you have actually studied to bolster your case. But if you have merely read a few serious things and now want to show off an expertise you don’t actually have, this is SO not the place for that. Sometimes a reader who posits ‘gotcha’ questions or claims near Magisterial authority because they read an Encyclical or two reminds me of a man who vainly thinks that, because he bought an Italian-English dictionary, he is now fluent in Italian. He might get away with it a little – but as soon as he tries that schtick with someone who actually speaks Italian, he is recognized as a blowhard. Theologically speaking, there are a LOT of people who speak Italian here. Make your point, make your case, use the documents you actually have studied to bolster your case, but do not pretend to an erudition or authority you don’t have in a place where a lot of the participants actually DO have such erudition and authority.
The times are very serious now and we need serious, honest discussion. I loathe the idea of letting any who might have a mote of sincerity go unanswered or unacknowledged. But some of the abuses I mention above are distracting from the serious discussion we need in perilous times, so I am going to get more restrictive about them. All you regulars, whether you are a top scholar or a regular parishioner, you already know the tone and scope of how we speak honestly and openly, while building each other up in mutual affection. Just keep doing what you’re doing.
Janet Klasson, also known as Pelianito, proposed that this column she wrote in her ‘Joy of Penance’ website might be a timely guest column here. I completely concur. I know many families are suffering enormously right now. It does remind us how much we need God and Rescue – and for those who mourn and grieve right now, how much more your jubilance will be when we are Rescued!
By Janet Klasson
…Let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such hostility against himself from sinners, so that you may not grow weary or lose heart. (Hebrews 12:1-4)
As each day passes I hear of more and more people of faith being asked to carry heavy crosses. I believe this cross-ifying will intensify as the Year of Mercy draws to a close. What is the connection?
I believe there is a far deeper significance to this jubilee year than we can even imagine. What an extraordinary grace this year has been for us and for those we are praying for. Jesus told St. Faustina:
“Before the Day of Justice, I am sending the Day of Mercy.” (Diary 1588)
“He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice.” (Diary 1146).
Jesus speaks of the “door of mercy” and as providence would have it, we have been gifted with holy doors in this Year of Mercy. This is an unimaginable grace. But why are we surprised? Where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more. The level of sin has caused the God of all mercy to shower unimaginable graces upon us. All glory to God, through whom even sin brings about His victory!
There are scant few weeks left in the Year of Mercy, which concludes on November 20, Feast of Christ the King. If you have been asked to carry a heavy cross in the Year of Mercy, you, chosen soldier of Christ, have been given a field promotion, and have been equipped with a weapon that is tailor-made. For the battle is upon us. Souls are at stake.
Of course, in the battle for souls, God’s secret weapon is and always has been the cross. Archbishop Sheen described it in this way:
“Never ask what did I do to deserve this? Because Jesus may say to you what did I do to deserve the Cross? If God the Father permitted His Divine Son to feel the agonies of Calvary, it must be that Crosses fit into the Divine Plan. If your cross is mental, change your behavior, confess your sins, and make peace with God. If your cross is physical, offer it up in union with Our Lord on the Cross for the conversion of souls. There is a price tag on every soul. Every soul costs something. Some souls are bought by prayers; others are bought through the kindness of alms; but most of them are bought the way Our Lord bought us, through pain and suffering.”
In this Jubilee of Mercy, God is calling all those who bear his name to take up the arms he himself took up, the precious wood with which he conquered sin and death. This is our hour of decision. Our victory is assured, but make no mistake, there can be no resurrection without a crucifixion.
Several times a day we make the sign of the cross, touching our heads to show our belief in the Cross, our breast to show our love of the Cross, and our shoulders to show our willingness to bear the Cross. So, when Christ asks us to carry a cross, let us respond with complete abandonment and trust in the way of the cross which that holy sign signifies.
And let us not forget the Divine Mercy Chaplet in the Hour of Mercy, 3:00, am or pm. Jesus told St. Faustina, “Through the chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will.” (Diary 1731)
The Year of Mercy is the jubilee year of miracles and hope. Let’s not waste another minute of it but as soldiers completely abandoned to our General, carry our crosses with Christ, for souls, in the glory of God! Jesus I trust in you! Save souls!
Prayer: O my Jesus, in the Divine Will I offer you all the unused shards of suffering, including my own, all those treasures discarded from the time of the fall of Adam and Eve to the last man. I offer them as a spiritual bouquet through the Flame of Love of our Immaculate Mother in reparation to the Holy Trinity for all sins ever committed, for the conversion of all those whose hearts are far from you, for the fire of pure love to be ignited in the lukewarm, and for all the intentions of those here and in my spiritual territory. Jesus and Mary I trust in you. Take care of everything, and everyone. May this Jubilee Year of Mercy bear abundant fruit for the Kingdom. May your Kingdom come and come quickly! Amen.
From my other blog, www.pelianitoblog.wordpress.com
Matthew 5:11-12 “Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
“My beloved, do not imagine that the journey of my faithful ones is so different from the journey of their Lord. On the contrary, I AM the way and all paths lead through the cross. Remember, my children, that each cross is tailored to the soul. Each is unique, as unique as the soul that bears it. The only similarity in all crosses is that I am with you all in your passion. You need only turn to me and all the strength I had in my passion will be made available to you. This is especially true when one is being persecuted for my sake. Would I abandon that poor soul? Would not the Father see me when he looks at him? When I say that your reward will be great in heaven, do not imagine that I am being trite. Those who suffer on my behalf will be eternally grateful for what that suffering has purchased for them. Indeed, it will seem a far greater reward than the soul feels he deserved for it. In comparison, the trial will seem a small thing—even a large trial. My children, you cannot possibly imagine with what magnanimity your infinitely generous God can act. Be therefore consoled. All that happens in this life is as a passing shadow, over in the blink of an eye. Endure all with faith, fortitude, and great trust. I am with you through it all. Shalom.”
O my Jesus, help me not to get caught up in my daily trials, big or small, but help me to link all trials to the cross so that I may in some way participate in your redemptive act. O Jesus, in your mercy, give me grace, faith, fortitude and ever-greater trust, that I might endure all trials with great love for your glory. I love you Jesus! Amen.