Our Lady and Sheen

Bishops of England and Wales and meatless Fridays

Fr. Z has posted an article here regarding the imposition of meatless Fridays as the form of penance to be practiced in England and Wales on Fridays.

We have an obligation to do penance on Fridays (outside of Lent as well).  Giving up meat unifies the Church Militant, but please do not forget a penance (even in the United States)  is required on Fridays.

May 14, 2011 Posted by | Religious Link | | Leave a comment

Abandonment and the Eucharist

Every once in a while I hear the discussion on “why did Jesus have to suffer the way He did to atone for our sins?” It is often pointed out that God could have found any number of ways in which to have Justice for the fall of man, and usually reasons are given for the Passion of Christ, and then the parties go on their way.

I believe that Christ suffered the way He did so that we would know that when we were completely “down for the count” with no one in our corner, that someone was there for us. One of the times that people are at their lowest is when the feel abandoned. Yes, people get stressed about money or other concerns of the flesh, but when one feels abandoned it becomes nearly impossible, without grace, to have Hope.

Sometimes, when we’re alone we retreat into ourselves, building self-destructive walls and hiding in the dark. We don’t want anyone to see us, ever, because they will know the shame we have in feeling abandoned and unloved. The hardest thing to do during a depression is to let people in, because, most importantly, you feel there is no one that wants to be let in.

Then, in the darkness of the night, we Christians have the Eucharist. The gift of the Eucharist allows us to fly into our chapel, to collapse in front of our Heavenly Lord, face to face, and tell him how much we have been hurt, and wounded. Our Lord, glorious and still then speaks and says, “I know what it is like to be abandoned and betrayed, and I love you.”

“I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed for us.” Romans 8:18

May 8, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Confirmation

Tonight we celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation in our parish with the Bishop. This was the first time that we’ve also had a baptism during the same liturgy, so we sang the litany of the saints.

Last summer, as I was preparing for my pilgrimage I read a book about St. Martin of Tours and discovered he was the first non-martyr included in the Roman Calendar. He also was included in the litany of saints that we sang. The more I discover my Catholic faith, I learn that St. Martin of Tours was possibly the most awesome choice I could have made for a patron at my Confirmation. In addition I hear my given names in the litany which is always very nice!

This year, in addition to instructing the high school students in the faith, I was able to sponsor one of them. We had many deep discussions about choosing a name, the meaning of confirmation, and what it meant to stand up and be Catholic in a world in which we are hated for the message of love we preach. This young man impressed me, because once he decided on Jerome, we had a last class in which I admonished the students to pray for the gifts of the Spirit and the courage to live them out. When we were working on re-finishing a dresser (wood working seemed appropriate right after the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker) he volunteered that he was really hitting spiritual bootcamp with St. Jerome. I don’t know if I’ve been more proud of a student in a long while.

Its days like these that make all the work feel worth it!

May 7, 2011 Posted by | Sacramental Saturday | , , , | Leave a comment