Sunday, July 18, 2010

"What does it mean to be a good Catholic?"

Church of the Immaculate Conception
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods

For a long time now...I can't put it into hours, days, or months...I have been searching, wondering. It's one of those times of life when the soul is dry, arid and it needs nourishment and I don't seem to know where to find it. Perhaps, I'm looking in the wrong places. I do know I need some guidance.

In reflection today I picked up Mornings with Thomas Merton, 120 Daily Readings and came upon #62.

Another one of those times that turned out to be historical, as far as my own soul is concerned was when Lax and I were walking down Sixth Avenue, one night in the spring. The street was all torn up and trenched and banked high with dirt and marked out with red lanterns where they were digging the subway, and we picked our way along the fronts of the dark little stores, going downtown to Greenwich Village. I forget what we were arguing about, but in the end Lax suddenly turned around and asked me the question:

"What do you want to be, anyway?"

I could not say, "I want to be Thomas Merton the well-known writer of all those book review in the back pages of the Time Book Review," or "Thomas Merton the assistant instructor of Freshman English at the New Life Social Institute for Progress and Culture," so P put the thing on the spiritual plane, where I knew It belonged, and said:

"I don' know. I guess what I want it to be a good Catholic."

"What do you mean, you want to be a good Catholic?"

So I guess that I what I am trying to discern. You see I don't know what that means either.
Who determines what a good Catholic is. It is a fearful thing to feel unsure. I can only hope that that because I have not heard the Spirit speak to me yet, that He will see fit to clear my ears and head so that His words of wisdom will come through loud and clear.

For this time of discernment I say a hearty,
"Thanks be to God!"

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Christian song - Yahweh I Know You Are Near

I would simply ask you to listen and to reflect on the words. These are words of comfort. I know that for certain. at a time when I was in most need of comfort and release from anxiety these are the words that were sent to me.

Indeed, O Lord, I know your are near! This, to me, is the most reassuring part of my existence.

Thanks be to God!

Please join in this Music Monday by visiting Shawntele's lovely blog Saved By Grace each Monday for a musical and inspiring start to your week. She hosts Music Monday where we are invited to post a song or video. This is an opportunity to share the music that lift your soul and enlightens your life.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Failure of Conquest and It's Only Success

Archbishop Fulton Sheen wrote the book The Cross And The Beatitudes, Lessons on Love and Forgiveness. In it he offers us a poem by Harry Kemp. I was so taken by it this morning that I decided I would share it with you.

I saw the Conquerors riding by
With cruel lip and faces wan:
Musing on kingdoms sacked and burned
There rode the Mongol Genghis Khan;

And Alexander, like a God,
Who sought to weld the world in one;
And Caesar with his laurel wreath;

And leading, like a star the van,
Heedless of upstretched arm and groan,
Inscrutable Napoleon went
Dreaming of empire and alone...

Then all perished from the earth
As fleeting shadows from the glass,
And, conquering down the centuries,
Came Christ, the Swordless, on an ass.
~Harry Kemp~

The truth is there is no unity or empires, no success or wealth without Christ. There is no happiness in the pain of others. It cannot be found except in the salvation delivered to us on the Cross.
Thanks be to God!