Discussion in 'On prayer itself' started by padraig, Feb 13, 2021.
I really like this picture of her.
Wondering if this sleeping King may have been Pope John Paul II?
By chance I watched two documentaries in the last couple of days. The first was on C. H Spurgeon the amazing Victorian Baptist Preacher who drew tens of thousands to his sermons. A kind of pre-runner of Billy Graham of his days.
Also on the Historic Welsh Revival of 1904-5 which pretty well set the whole country on its knees for the next twenty years. The central focus here was the marvellous Preacher , the very young Even Roberts.Evangelical Preacher.
What did Spurgeon and Evans have in common? They were very simple people with little enough education. Roberts left school at the age of 12 and was a coal miner. They were both outsiders of the clerical elites. Spurgoen was a simple country man who people laughter at because of his accent. Evens a simple ordinary coal miner, not even a clergyman. But they were people who talked directly to peoples hearts. Folks could relate to them on a personal basis. They were not intellectual pie in the sky'ers (the same might be said for Billy Graham or Billy Sunday).
Translating this into our own Catholic experience this translates so well. Look at many of our Catholic Evangelical saints (the ones who produced mass conversions) . Padre Pio, Brother Andre, Mother Angelica, Solanus Casey, Archbishop Fulton Sheen. They knew how to speak to people and move them because they were off the simple people. But most of all they were personally holy.
..and when Our Lady is sent down from Heaven as Queen of Prophets it is to exactly these people.. often children that she is sent.
There is a little story behind this picture.
I saw it on Face Book a couple of years back and liked it so much I downloaded it on my computer to keep.
A couple of days ago I decided to down load Catholic media to utube and in order to do so downloaded video editing software, adobe Elements video and photoshop.
Well this photo shop had a programme which randomly selects a picture from my archive and changes and alters it with a new animation procedures. Out of the very many it selected and altered this picture as its very first one and presented it to me to see. Well how did it change the picture? Well it seems to me it changed the lighting totally. It made it well...more heavenly. I might even get a hard copy and get it framed. (Also notice the Cross.. the , 'Sign in the Sky'.
It reminds me of the words of St Therese..
.'When I die I will let drop a shower of roses upon the Earth'.
I remember that moment in my conversion when I realized with amazement that Jesus HIMSELF guaranteed the Catholic Church to last to the end of the world and that the gates of hell would not overcome it. He also said to Pilot that He came to earth to "testify to the Truth". The Catholic Church was here for me and you with the Truth 2000 years later. Doctrine has been maintained as Jesus promised. He set up a human and earthy system to bring Truth to all of us visibly and easily in human terms that we can see, hear, and understand but, with anything human there will always be flaws. Jesus' own beginning Church had the betrayer Judas, but I think Jesus was showing us that this is to be expected with humans, and the Church of course went on past many betrayers who failed. So like the good Apostles, we need holy anger against all the betrayers. We need to stand up for Truth even if we need to admonish the Pope himself, but unlike protestants, we cannot leave the Church, as the Holy Spirit has convinced us that He stays with His Church throughout the centuries, and we would be be lost without it. The Holy Spirit may give me and you some wonderful truth and insight, but NEVER anything that is against Church teaching. I cannot spread Truth throughout the world for generations, ONLY the Church can, again which is why it is the only medium for Truth. Anyway, I'm bad at explaining but trying to say in a nutshell that whatever the Church looks like to a human, it is the Truth, and the Way, and the Nourishment we need to union with God.
Yes, though I think the great difficulty and scandal caused to many Catholics is in their perception of what exactly the Catholic Church really is. It is the Mystical Body of Christ. With heavy on the, 'Mystical'.
People in Modern times are not really accustomed to think of the Church in those terms. If I was to ask most Catholics what we mean by , 'The Church' they would be thinking of things like the Pope, the Vatican, the Bishops, the Cathedrals, the Churches, the Swiss Guard, the Vatican Museum and Arts, the Religious Orders, the Great Universities and so on. Hard , material things rather than the living Mystical Reality of the People of God.
So when folks see the physical things either turning Judas or going up in smoke they think of the, 'Church' as going up in smoke.
But rather than going up in smoke it is in the furnace of affliction in order to be purified
So we have the Great Irony of people racing from the Church in droves, when , actually, they had no idea what the Church was in the first place.
I had a wonderful Baptist Pastor who called at my door a few years back Evangelising. It turned out he had been a former Catholic . When I asked him what had turned him from his childhood Faith he ran of a list of things as for example Adoration of Mary. I then had to tell him that the things he was turning his back on were not actual Catholic beliefs and practices in the first place. He had the good grace to look slightly abashed.
So well said Padraig! It's hard to explain but the issue of getting souls OUT of the Catholic Church seems to be a favorite of the devil. When I first came back to the faith I was given so many protestants into my life that tried to convince me at first "it doesn't matter what "church" you go to" My answer was "then why any church but the Catholic church?" Of course when the devil couldn't lure me away by the "God wants you to be happy so it's okay to sin once you are saved....he went on to the big guns...."Catholics worship idols, place Mary above Jesus...blah blah blah...." I even see long time Catholics that like to try other denominations to see if they like the community better, who " stay Catholic because they were born into it but find such meaning in such and such's homily's at the protestant church so have been going there instead lately" People that don't know their faith or bother to study it can easily be led away in these times and once the devil gets you out and away from the Sacraments that Jesus proclaimed necessary for Eternal Life, we are doomed. Saint Teresa of Avila was alive during the Luther reformation, and in the beginning of her book Way of Perfection exclaims "at this time there came to my notice the harm and havoc that were being wrought in France by these Lutherans and the way in which their unhappy sect was increasing! This troubled me very much, and as though I could do anything, or be of any help in the matter, I wept before the Lord, and entreated Him to remedy this great Evil. I felt I would have laid down a thousand lives to save a single one of all the souls that were being lost there,"
I have an old friend who is going the way you describe.
My main temptation, Carmel is not to join other Faiths but to return to having no Faith at all. But when the devil tempts me I have a ready answer.
If as you suggest, Devil, that it is all a Fairy Tale fair enough. But when I look back on my life at the time I had no Faith I was very, very unhappy indeed; suicidal in fact. But every day and every hour and every second that I have had Faith has been full of the Greatest Joy even in times of Great Trial and Pain. So I will keep my Fairy Tale, if that is what it is and you can keep your , 'Get Real', deal. I don't think the poor Devil knows quite what to do with this reply. He has utterly no sense of humour, nor any trace of lightness.
As to other Faiths I think I can say very firmly with St Teresa of Avila that I am very much a child of the Church, I would no more change her than I would have changed my Earthly Mother.
I am still working on the Picture of St Theresa. It is fun changing it. I suspect I have made it worse, still it is fun.
I had an entertaining time of it in Church tonight A n elderly couple came in to visit for the first and as they were maybe hard of hearing they spoke quite loudly to each other. It is so quite in the Church that you could hear a pin drop so I believe everyone could hear what they were saying.
Him. 'They seem like very good people here!'
Her. 'Yes but they're very quiet on it. Is there something wrong?'
Her. 'Its very dark in here are there no lights?'
Him. 'I can't find any light switches'.
Her. 'How do they all see what they are doing?'.
I hope they return; they made the Holy Hour seem very short.
Love this! God bless them.
This describes my sister, sadly. Lonely after losing her husband and looking for friendship. She has found some lovely friends in a Protestant church. Sadly, I've never found our Catholic Church to have the same inviting quality.
I agree with this statement somewhat. The more modern the church and mass/service the more distracted I become. The more traditional and mystic the more my soul awakens to praise the Lord.
I’ve had a difficult time relating to alot of people in church over the years. Thankfully I have recently found a few older Catholic friends who enjoy nothing more than joining me during adoration/ prayer sessions and bible studies. I wish I had the time to delve more fully into theology as I find the more I learn about God the more I fall in love with Him.
I eagerly look forward to the day of retirement when I may spend more time focusing solely on learning and loving Him
Thank you. This made me belly laugh.
I have a special concern for such thirsting but confused, and often hurting, Catholics, HH. I will keep your friend in my prayers, especially during my prayers against the enemy. For he is content to lure your friend, not to what is bad, but to that which is less graced, though it may feel better. I shutter to think, and pray that I may never be, the motivation for anyone to make such a choice!
Fact: with each Holy Communion, our Carpenter Lord enlarges your heart to be a more powerful conduit of love and mercy flowing out into the world. But we don't necessarily feel the truth of this transformation, and can fail to respond accordingly. It is so tempting to seek what tangibly satisfies. Now this is fine when staying within the Catholic Church, such as switching from a Novus Ordo to TLM. But JoeJerk wants to draw us to what either touches us more emotionally, or what stimulates us intellectually, even if it is good; as long as it is away from the Catholic Church which preserves the Deposit of Faith and the fullness of grace. Such a decision is spiritually fatal, unless...
It is so painful to witness...Lord we trust that in Your Providential Care, You use this time of wavering in order to impress upon the heart of HeavenlyHost's friend: the truth, beauty and excellency of the Catholic Faith. It is the narrow path which opens up to vistas of heavenly glory. May this friend be a prodigal child only for a brief time, so as to experience the fullness of the Your Fatherly compassion upon returning!
Luke 15:22 But the father said to his servants, 'Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet; 23 and bring the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and make merry; 24 for this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.' And they began to make merry.
It is so important to find people to engage and pray with. If you pray earnestly for a holy prayerful friend God will find one and more. He did it for me. He brought me a holy intelligent lady who moved back here from Maryland. She is so holy and we have the Heralds as well. It may take perseverance but it will happen
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