Please pray to St. Anthony for the protection of the wildlife of the Gulf of Mexico and SS. Peter and Andrew, patron saints of all whom make their livelihood from fishing. And, prayers for the success and safety of all whom are trying to stem the horrible oil flow.
Prayers, please, for the spirituaal, mental and physical health of the following, for all their loved ones and all who take care of them:
Elaine, terrible pain and back spasms have her barely able to walk, and she needs to go to her Dad's funeral tomorrow and interment on Tuesday.
Amp, who has surgery on Tuesday, a hernia of his abdominal wall. Also, prayers for Amp, 8-year-old Mark, on their birthday, the 31st.
Chris, who returns to work tomorrow after his annual unpaid month off. He is still not completely recovered from his breakdown, so prayers he will manage well.
Forty-three 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.
The angels 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.
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,
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]