Love, Sacrificially.

I admire poets and authors of books. I read quite often, and never come away without some better understanding of life or the pains and anxieties of existence. The need for social interaction, the common weaknesses and episodes of life. Why should we seek an explanation when often enough, none is needed. Our events just happen, and they are profound when it hits our head deep enough – because we are brought to life, to the realization of our actuality – the fact that we are alive, and that what we do has implications in this world because God has deigned us to love one another. The absence of our love for the other is often an action costing great price.

God is love, and when we ignore our duty to love at the truest and divinest, we fall quite a distance from the Lord and His direction. Tonight, I was reading the great author Flannery O’Connor, an American Catholic who lived in the deeply Protestant state of Georgia. I often find her short stories to be both a criticism of racism, but at the same time, a moving allegory of the nature of divine grace. With further reading, I came upon this quote.

The operation of the Church is entirely set up for the sinner; which creates much misunderstanding among the smug.

Our contemporary understanding of religious life scarcely remembers this fact. The media will skew us, and paint us with a brush, as if being Catholic – or Christian, for that matter, was a lifestyle choice. The public will do anything now, to erase the fact that the western world was once deeply religious. The New World was evangelized by Roman Catholic and Church of England missionaries, Ireland was once a bastion of the faith, and Great Britain was a churchgoing island. Lately, the Irish have spat in the face of God Almighty, and have voted to allow the slaughter of the young and innocent: the unborn.

My conclusion is that this modern world is, indeed, becoming far too smug. We trod all over the religious, religion, and the sacred. It is our way, or no way. God’s way isn’t on the ballot anymore.

The Anglican Communion has been crumbling from the top down – the Episcopal Church has been sanctioned, the Church of England is considering “gender change” services and treating them as if it were a sacramental occasion. The Anglican Church of Canada has continually pressed forward against scripture and tradition, voting to adopt language in the Prayerbook for same-sex marriage. These moral tragedies, these impossibilities: of course, all in the name of love and mercy.

But, you see, the root of the problem is sentimentality. We wish to be open to all, but in being open to all you lose the meaning of religion. If everything is allowed, we are but animals who receive communion on Sundays. Thanks be to God I was born in the true Church of Christ, receiving leadership since Christ ascended through His Vicar.

The symptom of all this is our lack of love for another. True love is sacrificial, but yet firm and grounded in the scriptures of Holy Writ. If we’re all happy now, and all lovey dove, then we have the abandonment of our eternal happiness written on our foreheads. Yes, our God forgives each and everyone of us – but to be granted that forgiveness, we must rely upon the assistance of His grace throughout our every trial. Acceptance for “the way you are” isn’t true happiness. It is a ladder, well balanced, which can fall at any kick or strong breeze.

There is nothing for us to do than to cleave like a new-born to Our Lord, and receive our sacraments, pray our rosaries, and love one another with a smiling and open forgiveness; never to forget our duty to spread the wonderful and dizzying news of the love of Him who made us, sustains us, and redeems us. O’Connor says that the Church is set up for the sinner. This is so true. Everything the Church has to offer us is, indeed, for each and everyone of us individually for our eternal happiness and for the making of great saints who love their Lord, and His Blessed Mother, His saints, and each other. For we are all His creation, and so we come from this equal and level ground beneath the cross. We, being flesh and bone, are all of the same seed. Therefore it is our duty to get our friends to heaven. Allowing our friends to sin, without revealing them the true nature of their actions, is a sin itself.

And now, let us pray to the Lord for Ireland. Let us all pray for the wee unborn, for mothers contemplating the termination of the life of their little one, for troubled families, for the depressed and the suicidal and those who struggle with anxiety.

Let us pray that those suffering might find relief in Christ, whose Sacred Heart burns for us, and all who suffer. He is suffering with them, with us, and His mercy will never abandon us.

Let us pray to the Blessed Mother, the Mother of God, who is also our mother. All we need to do is say her name and like a loving mother, here she will be.

And finally, thank your Guardian Angel for loving and protecting you.

Humour of Politics

I don’t spend much time (what relatively little there’s been so far) on this blog commenting about political issues. I don’t refrain for any reason because most times I do have a lot to say, but it’s very much a topic I talk about in my daily life. Sometimes I like a break.

I hope you wouldn’t mind if I remarked something one might find controversial, but I find a bit funny. On the radio and on the evening news you’ll often see interviewed, young, University-aged students about their opinions on what this and that, he and she are doing at Parliament and so on. Most times they’ll have one of these very profound, knowledgeable faces and points of criticism when they talk about certain aspects of our grand legislature.

Yet when they’re asked about voting, a good few make it clear that they “did not vote” in the last election, but they aren’t happy with the (insert name of a member of the Parliament.)

Neglecting to vote is excluding yourself from the democratic process, and that is a somewhat fair thing to say.

I understand that perhaps, it would do moral harm to cast your vote when the only options are for those who promote immoral viewpoints and behaviours; abortion or maybe an uncertain affiliation. I can’t imagine how unfair a situation like that would be, and in the end politics, while important, is not the main goal of my life and I wouldn’t think anyone else.

Render unto Caesar, that which belongs to Caesar; unto God what is God’s.

I think it’s important, as Catholics, to be uncompromising on the sanctity of life and the family. That is important in this day and age.

Conditor alme Siderum

Were you ever young enough to remember believing the moon followed you around? I hope you were, for when I was younger and night fell, did I happen to be in a car or on a boat or whatever, I used to look up and count the stars. I noticed the stars would change here and there, at least I thought since the number of them appeared infinite and it was never known to me if I counted the same star thrice or left it out completely. However, the moon was always in the same spot at every angle and every new location. Sometimes the one I was with would, in his own way, point out that this was the great creation of God and it was there for us. Indeed this is one fond memory of my childhood I have, discovering and being told about the creator of the stars at night; conditor alme siderum.

ImageStars serve both a practical and spiritual purpose. Mary is the Star of the Sea, the ocean star. In particular my village has always had a strong devotion to Our Lady under this title and many communites in Newfoundland and Ireland, as well as a few sea-side villages in Wales, Scotland, and England have a similar patronage or devotion to the Queen of Heaven, the ocean Star. She has been called the “guide of the wanderer” and is the refuge of the sailors and sea-men who must brave the most tempest storms and winds.

Whatever the purpose, the night sky still looks as beautiful and lovely as it did when I was young and the more you realise how fortunate you are to be in a position where you can appreciate the common and small things, the more you WILL appreciate and notice the small things. That’s why I’m not going to fret over my math mark, which tomorrow I’ll find out. I’m not going to worry….I at least I’m saying that now haha.