Wednesday, August 28, 2013
I would like to make a few clarifications to this homily. First off, we do need to have the virtue of hope, and hope is a good thing. The point that I wanted to make is that we also need to have the virtues of faith and charity as well. So, please keep on hoping that we may go to heaven, but we need to do more than just that.
Also, when it comes to discipline, I'm not sure that I got the point out exactly as I wanted (which happens in most homilies). So, I just want to make clear, that God does not only discipline us when we are doing wrong things, but also, he disciplines us as well when we are doing good. God's discipline is done out of love, and in a way to that leads to our purification, even if we are following his will.
We also need to acknowledge that there is still evil in this world, even if we have been freed from original sin. Evil still happens in this world, and things happen that cause us to take a step back and wonder why certain things are happening, 9/11 is an example of this. The victims from this act were not being disciplined from God, but because of someone else's evil choice, they are the one's who suffer. Natural disaster is also not a way in which God disciplines us, nor is it when we lose a loved one, be it a child, a spouse, or a parent. We do not have all the answers here on earth, and many things will remain a mystery, but we do know that God loves us and is with us, even when we are going through a difficult time. I hope this homily is helpful.
Friday, August 16, 2013
you can find more of it here as well. The thing that really inspires me about this letter is that St. Stephen wrote it to his son to pass on his knowledge and love for him. I remember going on retreats in grade school and high school and getting letters from my parents, and I always treasured them. What I recommended to the daily Mass goers this morning was that they write letters to their children to let them know of their love for them, but also to pass on their knowledge to them. I recommend that to all of you as well. Here is a great example of a letter to get started from:
My dearest son, if you desire to honor the royal crown, I advise, I counsel, I urge you above all things to maintain the Catholic and Apostolic faith with such diligence and care that you may be an example for all those placed under you by God, and that all the clergy may rightly call you a man of true Christian profession. Failing to do this, you may be sure that you will not be called a Christian or a son of the Church.
Indeed, in the royal palace, after the faith itself, the Church holds second place, first constituted and spread through the whole world by His members, the apostles and holy fathers, And though she always produced fresh offspring, nevertheless in certain places she is regarded as ancient. However, dearest son, even now in our kingdom the Church is proclaimed as young and newly planted; and for that reason she needs more prudent and trustworthy guardians less a benefit which the divine mercy bestowed on us undeservedly should be destroyed and annihilated through your idleness, indolence or neglect.
|Inside the basilica…|
My beloved son, delight of my heart, hope of your posterity, I pray, I command, that at very time and in everything, strengthened by your devotion to me, you may show favor not only to relations and kin, or to the most eminent, be they leaders or rich men or neighbors or fellow-countrymen, but also to foreigners and to all who come to you. By fulfilling your duty in this way you will reach the highest state of happiness. Be merciful to all who are suffering violence, keeping always in your heart the example of the Lord who said: “I desire mercy and not sacrifice”.
Be patient with everyone, not only with the powerful, but also with the weak. Finally be strong lest prosperity lift you up too much or adversity cast you down. Be humble in this life that God may raise you up in the next. Be truly moderate and do not punish or condemn anyone immoderately. Be gentle so that you may never oppose justice. Be honorable so that you never voluntarily bring disgrace upon anyone. Be chaste so that you may avoid all the foulness that so resembles the pangs of death.
All these virtues I have noted above make up the royal crown and without them no one is fit to rule here on earth or attain to the heavenly Kingdom.