Prayers, please, for Paul, 23, and Caitlyn, 19, he was killed and she was seriously injured (and is in a coma,) when their taxi was struck by a car in a high speed chase. Prayers for their families and friends, and for Paul's happy death and eternal rest. Prayers, too, for their taxi driver, lightly injured, and for the State Trooper who gave high speed chase in this residential area, also for Javier, who struck their taxi while fleeing.
Prayers, please, for Phyllis, just diagnosed with a malignant inoperable brain tumor. Prayers for Nicole, hysterectomy with potential for complications today, and for her worried parents, Michael and Genny, and all her family. Prayers for Judy, a shut-in who had to be taken to the emergency room today, and thanks for Harry, who went along to comfort her. Prayers for Dot, breast cancer and facing a mastectomy, also for Billy, whom we prayed for when his bladder cancer was treated. He has now been diagnosed with prostate cancer. Prayers for Linda, who asked prayers for them and for all their family.
Forty years ago today, I graduated from Tampa Catholic High School. Prayers, please for all the teachers and students there who changed my life forever for the better. Much of what I give you I received from them. I urge all of you to pray daily for those who taught you and, if this applies, for those you've taught. It is a practice I love very much. Lord, help us all as You know and will. God's will is best. All is mercy and grace. God is never absent, praise Him! Thanks so much. JL
January 29, May 30, September 29
Chapter 7: On Humility
We must be on our guard, therefore, against evil desires,
for death lies close by the gate of pleasure.
Hence the Scripture gives this command:
"Go not after your concupiscences" (Eccles. 18:30).
since the eyes of the Lord observe the good and the evil (Prov. 15:3)
and the Lord is always looking down from heaven
on the children of earth
"to see if there be anyone who understands and seeks God" (Ps. 13:2),
and since our deeds are daily,
day and night,
reported to the Lord by the Angels assigned to us,
we must constantly beware, brethren,
as the Prophet says in the Psalm,
lest at any time God see us falling into evil ways
and becoming unprofitable (Ps. 13:3);
and lest, having spared us for the present
because in His kindness He awaits our reformation,
He say to us in the future,
"These things you did, and I held My peace" (Ps. 49:21).
The theme of God seeking His laborers first expressed in the Prologue
comes back here, like background hints of melody woven through an
overture. God SEES us, yes, but He also SEEKS us, seeks those who
seek Him. If we forget that, God's loving, watchful care over us (He
assigns angels to us!) is reduced to the lackluster charm of a security camera,
an "Eye in the sky."
Ever lose somebody in airport? It's a funny sort of panic, because
both of you know that ultimately, somehow you will connect. Until
that happens, however, a lot of anxious hunting takes place. Do you
know the joy when two such people finally find each other? It ain't
slight! While one says "Thank heavens I found you!" the other is
saying, "But I was looking for you, too, EVERYWHERE!" There is a
great common blessing in such moments, one which far transcends the
anxiety of the search which preceded it.
That's how it is with God. While we are seeking Him, even BEFORE we
are seeking Him, He is seeking us. There is so much love in that searching,
on both parts. The novice is to be examined to see if she truly seeks God.
But the question is not just for novices. "Quaeremus inventum," said St.
Augustine: "Let us seek Him Whom we have found." And so it goes. A monastic
life done right has seeking and finding writ large on every page, from
beginning to end.
Angels got a bad press in the Roman Catholic world in the late 60's
and beyond. It became fashionable to be rather scornful of such
belief and some skeptics viewed guardian angels as only a slight step
beyond the fairy godmothers of children's tales. Well, folks, it was
one time they weren't on the crest of a wave. The signs of the times
told them that emphatically when a ground swell of popularity arose
with angels as its focus.
To some, angels are less threatening as a concept than God. They are
more than human, but less than divine. They share our status of being
creatures, but they have powers beyond our ken. No wonder popular
culture embraced them: they are a very good entry level awareness of
something beyond, something spiritual. Whatever else they may be,
they are real. Why waste 'em? Let them help us all they can and let
us ask for more besides! There may be reservations among some of our
readers about praying to saints, but Scripture abounds with examples of
conversations with angels, a comforting assurance for our Protestant readers.
Go for it!
A couple of years ago, a confessor recommended that I pray to
my Guardian Angel about a problem. No one had said that to me in years! I
took his advice, however, and loved the results. Growing tired of always just
calling on him generically, I decided to give my guardian angel a name.
I call him Hal, short for the Hebrew "hallelujah", a word I'm sure he says quite
a lot. He seems happy enough with his new moniker! Thanks, Hal. I owe you
By the way, the Guardian Angels are the patrons of the American
Cassinese Congregation. I know some guys who probably would have
loved to change that during the "bad press" years. Thankfully, no one
did! Holy Guardian Angels, pray for us!
Love and prayers,
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