Sunday, September 16, 2012

Reality Check

After being immobile for several weeks, I've been taking a long walks over the past few days to gear up for going back to work tomorrow.  (Please keep me in your prayers)     While walking a few days ago, I man riding a bike stopped me and asked a few questions.    Was I new in town, what kind of dog I have, etc.    He was doing neighborhood watch.     Don't ask me how, but we ended up talking politics.   He told me he was a Jew but shockingly told me he did not give a bleep if Iran blows the Jews in Israel to smitherines. 

"So what", he told me, "I don't give a bleep about those people.  It has nothing to do with me".

He went on to say he wanted to kill his mother who had Alzheimer's, there were three young unmarried women in his neighborhood who had children that were 'bastards' and they should be forced into abortions.

I thought, My this it?    Are these the convictions of our fellow countrymen?  Is this chilling selfishness behind it all? 

I spent an hour cordially speaking to him about Catholic theology, how love for souls and our brothers and sisters manifests itself.  We parted friends though I am sure he went home and reached for an Advil.  LOL.

Afterwards, I thought about how lost we are without sanctifying grace.   I thought about how little I actually draw and how much benefit I receive, how foolish we are.  We are our own worst enemy.

From Fr. John Hardon.

The theology of grace is not simple, as may be seen from the sequence of errors strewn along the path of the Church’s history. The complexity of the subject is due as much to its intrinsically mysterious character, since it deals with nothing less than the life of God shared by His creatures, as to our natural proneness to rationalize and explain everything in this-worldly terms. Yet a clear grasp of the basic principles is useful and may at times be indispensable, for directing oneself and others on the road to salvation. It is no coincidence that the great heresies on grace, like Pelagianism and Jansenism, had a profound influence on the morals and spiritual life of those who professed these errors; and that the influence is still exerted centuries after the original aberrations arose. On a smaller scale obscurities or deviations from the authentic teaching can be harmful to individuals who are living otherwise normal Catholic lives; as clarity and certitude can be of immense value for persons who are sincerely trying to serve God and respond generously to His will.

The saints understood the importance and dignity of grace, which they attested is so excellent that neither the gift of prophecy, nor the working of miracles, nor any speculation, however sublime, is of any value without it. For the gifts of nature are common to the good and bad; but grace is the proper gift of the elect. They that are adorned with, influenced by, and sanctified in it are esteemed worthy of eternal life.

 No one has spoken more eloquently about grace than the author of the Imitation who, through his influence on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, has shaped so much of modern spirituality. “Grace,” he wrote, “is the mistress of truth, the light of the heart, the comforter of affliction, the banisher of sorrow, the expeller of fears, the matrix of devotion, the producer of tears. What am I without it but a piece of dry wood and an unprofitable stock, fit for nothing but to be cast away.” This is not rhetoric but only a faint declaration of the truth, since without grace man is not only left to his own resources and incapable of reaching the Trinitarian destiny to which he was raised but, because of the fall, cannot for long even remain faithful to the laws of his own nature.


Dymphna said...

I bet he's single.

Steve "scotju" Dalton said...

Carol, I hope you're fully recovered from your illness.
A lot of American Jews have negative feelings about Israel. One of the reasons why is the crappy way the Israelis treat religious and racial minorities. Many American Jews were involved in the civil rights movement in the last century, so the Israeli mistreatment of minorities is bothersome to them.

Maria said...

Well, lol, I finally got my update on your condition. I will offer Mass for your successful re-integration into work life mon frere.

My man Hardon.Honestly, I don't know where I would be or what I would know without him. He wrote a whole book on the theology of grace. Over and over again he hammered home--without prayer, constant prayer and begging God for help there is no grace. No grace no Heaven ;)So glad you are up and about! Go slow and don't overdue :)

Jack O'Malley said...


I hadn't realized you were out of sorts. I wish you the best of health and knock 'em dead at work!

God bless.

breathnach said...


All the best as you get back up to full speed at work! Remembering you in my prayers.

(I admire your gusto in evangelizing the self-hating Jew on your walk. I wouldn't last ten minutes.)

susan said...

God bless you...what a witness!

I'm keeping you in prayer dear one.

BTW....check out the doings over at ...some great posts of late, especially as this mess is heating up.

TTC said...

Thanks guys. Appreciate prayers and support!

Maria said...

Our Carol is made of stern stuff ;)