To Seeking Forgiveness

Bartolome Murillo The Return of the Prodigal Son Wikimedia Commons

Bartolome Murillo
The Return of the Prodigal Son
Wikimedia Commons

Those seeking forgiveness of their sins should not fear the Lord. His mercy is without limits and is available to all who approach Him seeking forgiveness.

Prepare your heart. Humble yourself. Rend your heart and not your garments (Joel 2:13).   Express your desire to turn from sin and surrender all attachment to sin.

The Lord asks more than a mere adjustment to how we live our life.  He asks for penitential works and a sacramental confession of sins.  He desires an internal conversion manifested in visible signs, gestures and works (Catechism of the Catholic Church ¶1430).  We are to rend our heart and turn away from sin, and return to Him with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning (Joel 2:12).

Trust in the Lord, hope abounds in His mercy and grace. “Do not fear, only believe” (Mark 5:36).

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Be a Missionary

Ecstasy of St. Francis Giotto di Bondone Wikimedia Commons

Ecstasy of St. Francis
Giotto di Bondone
Wikimedia Commons

The United States of America is missionary territory filled with people seeking truth and love.  They know what their heart desires, but wander about aimlessly and follow those more lost than they in their quest of truth and love.

Their creator placed the desire for truth and love in their heart.  What they desire is their creator, who is truth and love.

As baptized Catholics we are called to engage the world, not to separate ourselves from it or to accommodate it, but to transform it with the truth and love of Christ Jesus.  The full truth of Christ Jesus resides in the church he established, and his grace and love flows abundantly from the sacraments he left her.

We are called to be witnesses to this truth and love.  This is what Christ Jesus commissioned his apostles and disciples with, and this is what we were commissioned with through our baptism.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

To the Great Mysteries of Faith

Christ with Eucharist Joan de Joanes Wikimedia Commons

Christ with Eucharist
Joan de Joanes
Wikimedia Commons

Three great mysteries of our faith are the Trinity, Incarnation and Eucharist. Mathias Josef Scheeben, a German theologian of nineteenth century, saw a relationship between these three great mysteries.

In the Trinity, the Son of God is mysteriously present in the Father and dwells with Father and Holy Spirit through all eternity.  In the Incarnation, from the “bosom of the Father” the Son of God, Jesus Christ, mysteriously enters the world through the womb of the Blessed Mother and takes on flesh and dwells among men.  In the Eucharist, the Jesus Christ mysteriously unites Himself with His church and enters in and incorporates His real presence, His true flesh and true blood, His soul and divinity in those who partake of Him in the Eucharistic.

These are the great mysteries of our faith.  One god in three persons; Jesus Christ, true god and true man; bread and wine, while retaining the appearance of bread and wine, through transubstantiation become the true flesh and blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

To Happiness

St. Joseph, the Carpenter Wikimedia Commons

St. Joseph, the Carpenter
Wikimedia Commons

God wills our happiness, and our happiness lies in our service to Him.  God calls each by name to a particular service for which they were created and no other can do.

This is our work. This is the good we can do.  This and this alone is what will bring true and everlasting happiness.  Our work may be to design and construct a building or to be a brick or nail in the building.  Each glorifies God.   Each earns a saintly crown in its glorification of God’s will.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

To the Rock

Moses Striking Water from the Rock Tintoretto Wikimedia Commons

Moses Striking Water from the Rock
Tintoretto
Wikimedia Commons

“For who is God, but the LORD? And who is a rock, except our God?” (2 Samuel 22:32) He is the Rock “that begot” us (Deuteronomy 32:18), and whose “work is perfect” and “ways are justice” (Deuteronomy 32:3-4).  “There is no rock like our God” (1 Samuel 2:2).  David sings praises to the Rock, “The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge, my savior … blessed be my rock, and exalted be my God” (2 Samuel 22:2-3 and 47-49).

When Israel and Judah drifted from their Lord God, Isaiah warns that they “have forgotten the God of your salvation, and have not remembered the Rock of your refuge” (Isaiah 17:10).   Isaiah also speaks of the Messiah to come as a Rock, who will became “a sanctuary, and a stone of offense, and a rock of stumbling to both houses of Israel, a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem” (Isaiah 8:13-14).  The prophet Isaiah also spoke of the Messianic feast to come, “You shall have a song as in the night when a holy feast is kept; and gladness of heart, as when one sets out to the sound of the flute to go to the mountain of the LORD, to the Rock of Israel” (Isaiah 30:29).

The supernatural rock that stood before Israel at Horeb (Exodus 17:6) from which water came out and Israel drank was Christ“ (1 Corinthians 10:4).   We are feed at Christ’s eucharistic banquet “with the finest of the wheat, and with honey from the rock” (Psalms 81:16).

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer. (Psalms 19:14)  For who is God, but the LORD? And who is a rock, except our God? (Psalms 18:31)  Trust in the LORD for ever, for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock. (Isaiah 26:4)

Posted in Essays, Meditations On Biblical Verses | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

To the Marriage of Gomer and Hosea

Hosea Wikimedia Commons

Hosea
Wikimedia Commons

In many ways, Hosea’s marriage to Gomer prefigures Christ’s marriage to His church.   Gomer was a harlot with many lovers, yet the prophet Hosea married her at God’s request.  Gomer would be unfaithful, leaving Hosea for her former lovers, yet Hosea would take her back.

At the request of His Father, Christ wedded us sinners through His passion and death.  Like Gomer, we stray from our marital relationship, replacing our love of Christ for our love of wealth, earthly pleasures, or self.  When Gomer strayed, Hosea took her back, and when we stray, Christ welcomes us back.

The fruits of Gomer’s and Hosea’s marriage were three children named “scattered”, later re-named “sow”, “no pity”, later re-named “pity”, and “not my child”, later re-named “my child.”

What will the fruits of our marriage to Christ be?  Will the seeds of His passionate love for us be “scattered” on a rock-hardened heart where they are unable to take root, or will they be “sown” in a fertile heart were they can take root and produce a thousand fold.  Will we humbly seek and partake of His infinite mercy or self-righteously reject it?  Will we completely unite ourselves with Christ in words and actions by loving others as He loves us, or will our union to Him be only by the words of our mouth and not by our imitation of His loving actions for others?

Posted in Essays, Meditations On Biblical Verses | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

To Belonging

Igor Stoyanov Wedding at Cana Icon Wikimedia Commons

Igor Stoyanov
Wedding at Cana Icon
Wikimedia Commons

Belonging resides in the deepest recesses of our being.   From the first moments of our birth comfort and security of belonging comes from being held and embraced, and later our identity of belonging comes from family and friends.

Yet our deepest desire for belonging rings with hollowness, for our soul continually longs to belong.   The soul burns for what it was created for, for Him who created it in and for love.  To Him and Him alone does our soul long.  As the bride seeks her beloved groom and the groom his beloved bride, the soul forever seeks its Creator and the Creator the soul He created and woos with the purest of love.

Posted in Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments