Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Lord Gives and the Lord Takes Away. Blessed Be The Lord

The pro-life activist community in Boston was given heartbreaking news yesterday that a daughter of one of our families was returned to God.   We are praying for the family and thank you for your prayers.

The Catholic activist is often busy at work explaining the Catholic fiat of surrender of the will, asking our priests and teachers to teach it, and our Bishops to preserve it.   Most of our work (especially these days) seems focused on defending the Catholic fiat from error and misunderstanding.

The Lord hears the cry of the poor.  Blessed be the Lord.

But the tests come when we are in need of basic things or suffering some way in body or spirit.

The Lord is my Shepherd, there's nothing I shall want.

But the tests come when we want to do something, have this or that thing or relationship that we know in our hearts is not good for our own well-being and our relationship with Christ.    Every one of us has been there in our journey in life.

The fiat of teaching surrender to God in these circumstances is usually socially and culturally combative.  It is where the bulk of our activism takes place.

But there is also a compelling and gentle witness to our Catholic fiat of surrender.

The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the Lord.

Death has weaved its way into the tapestry of my life many times and in many ways - natural, accidental and even murder.

Some of these happened when my faith was immature.  While I was less than Job, I thankfully had the good formation of Catholic priests and nuns to remain immersed in the love of Christ and His Sacraments and His Church as I made my way through the surrender.

I know the Boston Catholic family who suffered this great loss through pro-life prayer groups and our operation rescue network. Their faith is mature and their love for God is their driving force.  They live the witness.

This is a thought-provoking and moving article on living after the death of somebody we love, written by Alice Thomas Ellis.

I have been clearing out rooms since the death of my husband and have been sometimes overcome by a sense of the charnel-house. The possessions of the dead can seem loathsome when they have lost all utility and are mere reminders of mortality, of corruption and decay, of grief and loss. Even evidence of past joys and triumphs -- trophies and photographs -- are a source of anguish when the one to whom they were most pertinent has gone and won't be coming back.
The house is mixed with the occasions of pain and you find yourself reluctant to move, to stir the air lest you raise the dust of old memories. The ubiquitous counselors will tell you that the pain passes and you are left with only the "good things," but I have not found this to be true. My second son died nearly twenty years ago and the wound has not healed, nor ever will, until I too am dead.
Do yourself a favor and read it in its entirety.

As readers here know, Boston Catholic activists are in a fierce battle to preserve the Catholic fiat for the next generation.   

It is in great peril.  

Teachers are maligning and slandering the spirit of the teachings of the Church as closed-minded hatred.   Cardinal O'Malley has set up Bryan Hehir to stage and implement the full use of our Catholic resources.  they are snuffing out the internal intellectual and spiritual process of knowing right from wrong, good from bad, spiritual life from spiritual death.    If we did not rise to this occasion, the next generation would not have the tools to make judgments about their own salvation.

These human struggles between the flesh and the spirit, the freedom from the law of sin and death and the fruit of the Catholic fiat of surrender, is beautifully explained by St. Paul in  Romans 8.    

In our struggles and temptations, so long as we continuously offer surrender of our own will to be molded to God's will for us and we offer supplication to God in our falls - though our bodies are dead because of sin, the spirit is alive because of righteousness and Christ remains in us.  

I am 100% certain that we will be victorious because Christ has promised that every generation will have the tools for salvation available to us to overcome every threat that separates us from God, through every affliction and every trial.

There are many who mischaracterize the preservation of this fiat within Christ's Church and others who will hijack the name "Catholic" to build themselves a fiefdom that departs from the Catholic Church.

Many suffer trials in this life, not at the hands of God but in natural sickness, accidents, temptation or suffering the death of a loved one caused by a human who decide your life burdens them in some way.  God is comforted in the agony of His  suffering in Gethsemene by those who publicly and quietly live the witness that the preservation of the Catholic fiat is neither nefarious nor malicious.    It is a treasure and the source and summit of our faith.

What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?

As it is written: "For your sake we are being slain all the day; we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered."

No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us.

For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things,  nor future things, nor powers,nor height, nor depth,  nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. 

The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.

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