O Lord Thou shalt open my lips and my mouth shall declare Thy praise.

Monday, December 31, 2012

We Give You Thanks For All Your Blessings...

It is the last day of the year. Let us give thanks for all the blessings of this past year.

From the Byzantine Akathist Hymn of Thanksgiving:

"Kontakion 10
No one can put together what has crumbled into dust, but You can heal men whose conscience has become twisted; You give the soul its former beauty, which long ago it had lost without a hope of change. With You, nothing is hopeless. You are Love. You are the Creator and the Redeemer of all things. We praise You with this song: Alleluia!"

Give thanks for God's Power.
Give thanks for God's Mercy.
Give thanks for Divine Love.
Pray that sinners will repent.
They know not what beauty waits in store for them when they repent and return to the Love of God. Their purity will be restored to them; their sins shall be taken away, removed from their past; and they shall be renewed for the glory of God.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Our Lord's Extended Family

Christmas is a time for visiting extended family. Today in the Byzantine Rite we look at some of Our Lord's extended family. Today, the Sunday within the Post-feast of the Nativity, is the Feast of St. Joseph the Betrothed, St. James the Brother of the Lord, and St. David the Royal Prophet.

Icon of the Flight into Egypt, today's Gospel for the Feast of Sts. Joseph, David, & James. This icon seems to have St. James (or at least a St. James) behind the donkey.

Icon of St. James the Less, Brother of the Lord and First Bishop of Jerusalem. The Church's original ceremony for the Holy Eucharist was composed by him, the Divine Liturgy of St. James. It is still used in the Antiochean Rites. We know that he is for a fact Our Lord's cousin from a couple of different passages. Most notably, at the foot of the Cross, St. John, a complete non-relative (whose family is identified in the Gospels), gets custody of the Mother of God. By Jewish law, when a woman's husband died, she went into the custody of her children. If she had no children, she was destitute. The fact that Christ gave His mother to St. John tells us that a)St. Joseph was dead, so Our Lord already had already inherited custody of her; b)He had neither siblings nor step-siblings (who were identical to siblings in law), since they would have automatically inherited her from Him upon His death on the cross; and c)He didn't want her to be destitute, which is what would have happened otherwise. That also tells us that St. Joseph didn't have a previous marriage as those children would have been Our Lord's step children. So with Our Lord having neither siblings nor step-siblings as the conversation at the foot of the cross gives away, St. James could only be one of the other meanings of the word "brother": either a male cousin or a "bro". As he wasn't among the 3 favored apostles-that was the other St. James, the older brother of St. John-he couldn't have been "bro". Therefore St. James was a cousin-and probably a closer cousin than St. John the Forerunner.

Icon of St. David the Prophet and King, Composer of the Psalms and Ancestor of God.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Sin is an Optical Illusion

A sin is not some object just sitting in your past. Rather, it is a hole; a void. Committing sin doesn't fill us (even though it might seem to satisfy us), rather it separates us from the Love of God, creating a void in our lives. The notion of sin filling and satisfying us is an "optical illusion" if you will. It seems to satisfy us, but in fact only makes a hole. The more we seek sinful pleasures, in order to fill that hole in our lives, the more we make the void bigger, for sin is a hole, not an object. It's like trying to repair a hole in some fabric by tearing the fabric even more.

When a sin is forgiven, nothing is destroyed, rather the hole is filled with Divine Love, the Love in which Christ the Bridegroom sacrificed Himself on the cross for the remission of sin. When we are forgiven and absolved of our sin, our past changes such that we never sinned. If someone were to look at our past and our whole life, they would not see a sin that was later destroyed, nor would they see a void where sin previously was, rather they would see that the void which previously existed in our past, which was our sin, has been filled with Divine Love. The hole, the sin, no longer exists in our past; it has been filled with the Love of God. It never happened. We are changed into a state of never having belonged to anyone but Christ, because that is what Christ deserves to receive, so that is what God's Mercy accomplishes.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christ is Born! Glorify Him!

He whose Flesh is the Bread from Heaven was laid in a feeding trough in a town whose name means "House of Bread".

Sunday, December 23, 2012

In the Sin Bin...

Just like how a shot in hockey must have a follow-through, so too must confession. It defies the laws of physics for a hockey player to take a shot and it not have a follow-through. The stick does not stop all of a sudden when it hits the puck. Even the most perfect snap-shot, with almost no follow-through and thus all the more difficult for the net-minder to follow and stop the shot, has a follow-through, even though it is quite small. The stick always continues forward as it continues to propel the puck to the net. So to Confession must have a follow-through, with the soul not returning to its former sins, but controlling and subduing its passions, as the Confession continues to propel the soul to Heaven.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Stop Me If You've Heard This One...

A young Christian maiden was engaged to a pagan in an arranged marriage, out of fidelity to Christ she refused to marry him, she was killed for being a Christian, and is venerated as a virgin-martyr. This time the girl is St. Juliana, whose day it is in the Byzantine Rite. She was from Nicomedia and at a young age realized that paganism is a delusion and was secretly baptized. She was betrothed to a pagan named Elusius, whom she refused to marry because he wasn't a member of the Church. Her father ordered her to marry him, but she remained faithful to Christ, for which she was severely beaten by her father.

When that was of no avail, her father handed her over to the pagan Elusius, who pleaded with her to marry him, even promising that he would let her remain Christian. She was unmoved (and indeed such promises of respecting the Christian spouse's religion are rarely ever kept, even today). He had her arrested and beaten severely in front of large crowds for being faithful to the Church. She remained faithful and was beaten repeatedly, each time being miraculously healed of her wounds. Eventually, Elusius gave up and had her beheaded in 304. 500 men and 150 women that witnessed her passion were converted by it and likewise martyred, baptized in their own blood.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Another Penitent For You

Icon of St. Boniface of Rome

I've written about penitents before. They are my favorite saints. They are female saints who were neither virgins nor married, in other words, whores who converted. Those I've already covered are: St. Theodora of Alexandria, St. Mary Magdalene, St. Mary of Egypt, St. Pelagia of Antioch, and St. Margaret of Cortona.

Today in the Byzantine Rite we celebrate St. Boniface, martyr. The Latin Rite celebrates him on May 14. He was a slave who was also the lover of his mistress, Aglaida (Aglae for short). They lived in debauchery together (they were "cohabitating" to use a modern term) at Rome. They both got tired of their way of life (in modern terms, the "magic" ran out of their relationship). They looked to Christianity as a way to add meaning to their life. Aglae sent Boniface out to Tarsus to fetch the relics of martyrs. Upon seeing many Christians willingly dying for the Faith after his arrival, he openly declared himself to be a Christian and was martyred, being baptized in his own blood. Upon receiving the remains of St. Boniface as her requested relics, Aglae was promptly baptized and lived the rest of her life as a nun, a total of 18 years, having given her wealth to build a church in his honor, the Basilica dei Santi Bonifacio e Alessio, and the rest going to the poor. The Eastern Churches celebrate St. Aglaida of Rome together with St. Boniface, whereas the Latin Rite doesn't have her on the calendar at all.

Sts. Boniface and Aglaida bored of their life of sin.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

More To Be Desired Than Gold and Many Precious Stones

"Once when I held in my hand the cross which was at the end of my beads, He [Christ, in a vision] took it into His hand; and when He gave it to me again, it appeared to be of four great stones, incomparably more precious than diamonds.-A diamond is but a counterfeit in comparison to these. They had the five wounds of Our Lord engraved upon then after a most curious manner. He told me that I should always see this cross so, from that time forward, and so I did; for I no longer saw the matter of which the cross was made, but only those precious stones-though no other saw them but myself."-St. Teresa of Avila

*The title of this post is from Psalm 18, the Psalm of the Bridegroom, who gave the crucifix on the end of the rosary as a token of His love to His mystical bride, Our Holy Venerable Mother Teresa of Avila whose heart was transverberated by the Heavenly Bridegroom.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

If Only Sex Wasn't Pleasurable

Icon of the Maternity of St. Anne, also known as the Immaculate
Conception. Its elements are St. Joachim, St. Anne, and a
marriage bed. The Theotokos was conceived in the natural
manner, so how pious and holy must that act have been if it had
the capacity to beget the Immaculate Conception herself? How
much self-control over their passions must they have had?
Pray to them for chastity and the sanctification of marriage.
The worst part about sex, the part that is our greatest downfall as a species, is the fact that the conjugal act is physically pleasurable. So many of our problems are caused by that fact. From broken hearts, to broken relationships, to broken marriages, to broken families, all because people are after sexual pleasure and manipulate those around them to get it. Not to mention the worst result of seeking sexual pleasure: eternal damnation; because you are then not just abandoning God in favor of worldly pleasure, but the premier worldly pleasure on top of that (anyone who says you can have it both ways is delusional.)

Indeed the sexual act would be far superior if it was mundane and not physically stimulating. The same act, but not providing any physical pleasure. Now, I cannot say if the carnal pleasure that accompanies sex was always a part of our human nature or if it is a result of original sin, but we would be far better off as a species if sex was not physically stimulating and provided no pleasure. The sin of lust and the manipulation that comes with it would disappear. All the many forms of the sin of lust such as acts that cannot lead to conception (oral sex, masturbation, sodomy, etc.) as well as pornography, prostitution, and so on would disappear together with the sin of contraception and the sin of abortion, for at that point, with the sexual act being mundane and lacking pleasure, only those truly interested in bearing children would even perform it. The only reason why any of those sins exist is because of sexual pleasure. Those sins also constitute the majority of the sins committed in the world. Bl. Jacinta of Fatima said that souls fall into hell like snowflakes because of sins of the flesh and the Mother of God told her that more people go to hell for sins of the flesh than any other reason.

So why would the sexual act causing no stimulation be such an improvement? What are we trying to get at? What's the big idea? Consider the Carnal Intimacy between Christ and His Bride: the Holy Eucharist. It is a mundane physical act that provides very little stimulation of any kind. It is the consumption of a small piece of ritual bread soaked in ritual wine (in the Western Rites, only the bread). The senses are barely stimulated at all and sense only mundane food. Only the intellect knows that It is the Flesh of God. It is a great power and reality we have, the ability to be physically intimate with Christ Our Bridegroom in the Divine Mysteries. Thank God that it is a physically mundane act with no physical pleasure, or else people would be grabbing Holy Communion sacrilegiously and in large quantities, only for their own physical pleasure in extreme degrees, with no regard for God, in a manner not unlike...well...the pursuit of sexual pleasure. How glorious it is that the Carnal Intimacy between Christ and His Bride is physically mundane, so that it is left aside and not abused by those who are worldly and do not love God. (Sadly, the Divine Mysteries are abused by those with false theology about the Eucharist and liturgy, but that's a topic for another day.)

The sexual faculties are a great, magnificent, awe-inspiring power, too great to be trusted to us humans. They exist to beget new life and to make the couple an icon of Christ and His Bride the Church. They are degraded by the fact that the sexual act is physically pleasurable. That causes virtually all humans to abuse their sexual faculties, turn them against their purpose, and abuse them for pleasure. How much more glorious would conjugal love be if it was a mundane and non-stimulating physical act like the reception of Holy Communion! It would mirror the Conjugal Love of Christ and the Church by being mundane physically, and by not arousing the physical passions, leave the soul soul be free to seek its intimacy. How free for prayer in their self-giving would couples be! Sin exists to impede our union with God and lust is the sin par excellence for it impedes our sexual faculties, our natural ability to imitate Christ. Indeed lust causes more damnations than any other sin. If Satan is going to hate anything, it's our natural ability to imitate Christ's self-giving; not an acquired power, but a natural power that we are all born with.

Marriage is the sacrifice of yourself to God to bring your spouse to Heaven. You give your entire self to take care of your spouse, even your very body. The sexual act is the pinnacle and symbol of marriage. It symbolizes the entire giving of your life to your spouse and is the pinnacle of the giving of your entire life to your spouse. That's what makes marriage a sacrament. (A sacrament is a symbol that brings into reality that which it symbolizes. Baptism is a physical washing that symbolizes and causes a spiritual washing. Imagine a stop sign that physically causes you to stop.) Marriage is a verbal (in church) and physical (in the marriage bed) giving of yourself that symbolizes and effects the giving of your entire life. That's why divorce is impossible, you have given your entire life. It is a sacrifice of yourself to the Father to get your spouse to Heaven. It is an imitation of Christ sacrificing Himself to the Father to get His Bride to Heaven. That is why the Holy Cross is called the "Marriage Bed of the Church": it is where Christ sacrificed Himself and it is what is present in the Eucharist, the Physical Intimacy of Christ and His Bride. The physical intimacy of bridegroom and bride within this sacrifice is virtuous, since it is self-less and seeks the salvation of the other. All other sexual acts are sinful, regardless of gender, marital status, consent-without discrimination they are all sinful-for none of them seek the salvation of the other, but physical pleasure and are all degradations of marriage and the sexual faculties.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Make us Pure O Most Pure One!

Theotokos, help us to be like thy Son, that we may receive Him at Christmas, and receiving
Him, become a part of Him. Cleanse us of our sins and make us pure like thy immaculate self,
for thy Son deserves to receive us never having sinned and belonging only to Him.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

St. Nick Gives Arius A Lump of Coal

Icon of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, Archbishop of Myra in Lycia. At the Council of
Nicaea, St. Nicholas famously pulled the notorious heretic Arius by his beard and punched
him in the face. St. Nicholas was expelled from the council for this and stripped of his
Gospel book (which symbolizes his teaching authority) and his omophorion (which
symbolizes his sacramental authority). Later that night his Gospel and omophor were restored
by Christ and the Mother of God in a vision (shown in the icon), showing that he was right to
condemn the heretic, even though many in the Church found it "uncharitable" and wanted
"dialogue" on the issue of Arianism.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

An Interesting Juxtaposition

The soul of the bride before Confession:

She is soiled and bound by her sins.
In her pride, she won't speak to her bridegroom.

And the soul of the bride after Confession:

She has her purity restored, is free, and her dress is a bit more modest, too.
In her humility, she calls out for help.

It's Advent. That means it's time to go to Confession.

Friday, November 30, 2012

The Protokletos; The First Called

St. Andrew, the first to answer the Lord's call, help
sinners answer God's call for their lives.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Divine Aid From the Inexhaustible Cup

Theotokos of the Inexhaustible Cup, known in Latin Rite terms as "Mary, Mother
of the Eucharist". Why is she always able to help us? Because her Son is an
infinite source of Divine Aid.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Theotokos Give Us Light

O Theotokos, help us to know our vocations and to live them perfectly, in a perfect imitation of thy Son's self-sacrifice on the cross for His Bride, the Church, that we might be beautiful and glorious icons of the union of Christ and the Church to show His Divine Love to the nations who know not His Sacrificial Love, having rejected it in favor of the pleasures of the world.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Be Thankful

Be thankful and appreciate all the spiritual treasures that God has given you.

If you have good speakers you'll want to crank this one up:

Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Eucharist, Sex, and Wasting Time

Today's Gospel in the Byzantine Rite:

Luke §66 [12:16-21]

"At that time, Jesus spoke a similitude to them, saying: The land of a certain rich man brought forth plenty of fruits. And he thought within himself, saying: What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said: This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and will build greater; and into them will I gather all things that are grown to me, and my goods. And I will say to my soul: Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years take thy rest; eat, drink, make good cheer. But God said to him: Thou fool, this night do they require thy soul of thee: and whose shall those things be which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich towards God."

Why do we build up lives in this world? They will only die in the fire. Let us purify ourselves of such lives for only Christ survives death and we must therefore join ourselves to Him. Christ, as the Divine Bridegroom, sacrifices Himself on the cross to be used by the Father to sanctify His Bride the Church. Let us reciprocate His love for us and give ourselves to Him for His glory. Only Christ Our Bridegroom survives death so we must join ourselves to Him. Christ already sacrificed Himself to the Father for our sake, so we must reciprocate His sacrifice. We belong to Him for He purchased us with His Blood. He belongs to us for He gives us His Flesh in the Eucharist, which is the Intimacy between Christ and the Church.

Friday, November 16, 2012

The Intimacy of Bridegroom and Bride

We contemplate Christ the Bridegroom giving His entire Self to sanctify His Bride, the Church. He gives His entire Self to Her, even His Very Body, which She receives in the Eucharist. The Eucharist is the Intimacy between Christ and His Bride the Church. The Eucharist is the Sacrifice of Calvary made present. It is Christ's sacrifice of Himself to sanctify His Bride made present before the Bride in the Liturgy, who in turn gives Herself to Him at the same Liturgy. In their physical intimacy, She receives His Flesh, and filled with Him, She becomes a part of Him, and as a part of Him, rests in His Heart. He gives Himself to be over Her to protect and nourish Her; She gives Herself to be under Him to support and console Him. She gives Herself by receiving Him and He receives Her by giving Himself. They Become one Flesh in their Intimacy. He gives Himself to Her, resting and abiding in Her to take care of Her and bring Her to Heaven. She gives Herself to Him to receive Him and by receiving Him, She becomes a part of Him, to support Him. She sacrifices Herself to the Father through obedience to the Bridegroom for the Bridegroom's sake and He sacrifices Himself to the Father to be used to fill Her with Divine Love, that She might rest in Heaven and cured of the afflictions of Her sins. The Sacrament of Marriage then, is just simply an icon of this union. A couple who lives in this love is married. The more perfectly their union imitates this union, the more perfect is their marriage. A couple who does not do this is not married no matter who says the contrary.

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Subtle Voice and the Arrogant World

The world speaks loud; the world speaks proud. The world defends its empty pleasures with great ferocity and intensity and much pompousness. God is a whispering sound as heard by St. Elias the Prophet. We must seek out the subtle voice which is even more relentless and further it is immortal. It is meek but never gives up and cannot be defeated. Death cannot contain it. It endures great suffering to accomplish its task. It seeks suffering wants to be opposed since the more opposition it faces, the more merit its actions have, to work the salvation for which it came into the world. Ask the Mother of God to help you find this voice and to follow it faithfully. This voice is that of her Son.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Trust Mama

Give your life to the Mother of God. She will use even what little you have to take care of you. Let her solve your problems so that she can take care of you.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

I Am A Monarchist

I am a monarchist. Christ is King. I support all governments who support my King and oppose all governments that oppose my King. By opposing my King, governments persecute the Church and oppress their own citizens. If the citizens support the oppression, the the situation is even more sad. Make no mistake, the American public has long since espoused sin-especially lust and greed-so the re-election of Dictator Obama is only a reflection of that already existing reality in society. Sin runs rampant in American society because the Church's members have failed to fight against sin and failed to see the sad reality we have been in for decades.

We are in the middle of a persecution in the US. The persecution isn't severe yet, but the Catholic Church is in the middle of a persecution in the United States. At the polls, we had a chance to stay the persecution, but failed. We failed because society has espoused sin and democracy is merely an expression of the passions of the people. What makes democracy a faulty and dangerous form of government is that it makes the passions of the people the law. In a system of democracy, the evil receives an equal voice to the good with good and evil being treated as equals.

Heaven is not a democracy, it is a monarchy. A good and virtuous government on earth is a monarchy where the King gives himself to take care of his subjects imitating Christ who gave Himself on the cross to take care of His subjects. For a government to be good, it must be an icon of Christ the King. Short of that, it only hurts the country.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

When Something is Impossible...

"He said: Give place, for the girl is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn."-Mt 9:24, from today's Gospel

What God tells you is possible, is possible, even if the whole world tells you that it isn't, that it's too late to do anything now. If you don't ask for miracles you won't receive them. If God says it's possible, then that's because God wants things to happen that way, even if a lack of faith gets in His way and prevents Him from acting, for God forces Himself on no one. Even the woman with an issue of blood was cured because she believed, even though doctors for years had been telling her that it was impossible to be cured. Without faith in God as the cause and goal of all things, nothing can be done.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Futility of Sin

Icon of Christ the Bridegroom over the
exact place of the Cross on Calvary

Consider Christ the Bridegroom and your sinful soul. The more you sin and the more you advance yourself in your life of sin, the more suffering you inflict on the Divine Bridegroom. The more suffering you inflict on Him, the more suffering He endures to atonement for your sins. You can't win. The more you sin, the more the Divine Bridegroom suffers to destroy your sins such that they never took place. Your life of sin is for nothing. It is the supreme vanity. The more it exists and the more it flourishes, the more suffering it inflicts on the Divine Bridegroom, and the suffering He endures is a penance to destroy your sins. The self-destructive nature of sin is really a wonder to behold. Not only does the sinner destroy herself by sinning, but even the sins themselves are self destructive as the more they exist, the more the Bridegroom atones for them.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Bridegroom's Bride

O Bridegroom, make us pure in soul and body, past and present for thou dost deserve to have us immaculate and sinless, never having sinned. Thou dost absolve sins such that they are deleted from our past and our present, never having sinned; those sins never took place; they have been destroyed and Thou art able to cure our flesh for that is what Thou dost deserve: to have us sinless, never having belonged to anyone but Thee. By the prayers of the Theotokos O Savior save us! Heal us O Holy One for the sake of Thy Name!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Very First Icon & St. Luke

The Byzantine and Latin calendars synchronize today as we celebrate the Feast of St. Luke on both. Here is an icon of St. Luke writing the very first icon. It reminds me of the meme, "Yo dawg, I heard you like icons...". It must be nice to have the model for the icon pose in person. No other iconographer can say that. This icon was written on the table top that belonged to the Holy Family at Nazareth. Over the centuries, the paint used to write the icon decayed, with many colors turning dark, giving the icon the nickname "Black Madonna". The icon moved around Europe for centuries before eventually resting at Częstochowa, Poland, where it still is today at the monastery atop Jasna Gora. Here is what the icon looks like today:

A little odd that the first icon in the icon above shows Our Lord held by the Mother of God on the observer's left. In most icons He is held by her on the observer's right as in the actual icon St. Luke wrote.

Monday, October 15, 2012

We Owe Ourselves and Our Whole Lives to Christ Our God

Icon of Christ the Bridegroom atop Calvary
We owe Christ the Bridegroom our very selves. He has given Himself to the Father, enduring suffering as a penance for our sins, that from the Father, He might fill us with the Father's Love. In the Eucharist the Bridegroom gives us with His Very Flesh that we might be filled with Divine Love, and filled with Divine Love, we become a part of Him, and as a part of Him, we rest in His Heart.

Christ sacrifices Himself to fill us with Divine Love and Divine Love is such that it must be reciprocated. The reason why Divine Love is offered to us is to get us to Heaven. We receive Divine Love and leave everything behind to follow Him who offered it to us.1 Being filled with His Love, we become a part of Him and rest in Him. Divine Love is given to us by Christ to bring us to Him and make us one with Him, the two becoming One Flesh, the Divine Bridegroom and His Bride the Church becoming One Flesh in the the Sacred Intimacy of the Eucharist.

We give ourselves to He who first offered us love, that we might reciprocate His love by giving ourselves to Him to be filled with His love, and filled with His love, become a part of Him and rest in His Heart. The Heart wounded by our sins against Him, receives then the one whom It loves and is satisfied. Only at this point is the Love of God satisfied, when the Beloved has reciprocated the love which Christ has offered Her to rest in Him by being filled with Him and His love. Only then is the Love of God complete and only then has It accomplished its purpose: to bring the beloved into union with God.

We then have a duty to offer ourselves to God. The fact that Christ has already sacrificed Himself to the Father to fill us with His Love to bring us to Heaven creates a certain obligation on our part to reciprocate Christ's Love because this is the means for our salvation. The fact that His Love requires reciprocation, creates a certain obligation on our part to reciprocate His Love back to Him. Our action is the only one left. The Love of God forces Itself on no one, but there is still an obligation on our part to give ourselves to Him for this is our only means of salvation. To not give ourselves would be a rejection of God and the Love brought into this world to bring us to Heaven. We *must* give ourselves to Him. To reject Him would leave us with nothing but the world around us with all its lies and empty pleasures and no means of entering Heaven for we would have rejected the Love which is our only means of salvation.

1Mt 4:20

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Just Servant

Icon of Extreme Humility
Christ gives Himself to the Father for our Salvation regardless of our actions. Even when we sin, abandoning and rejecting Him in favor of a life of sin, He gives Himself to the Father to make us holy and bring us out of sin and into the life for which we were created. He gives Himself and everything He has and all the suffering He endures as a penance to the Father that we might be made pure and rest in the Father's bosom.

He ignores our protests against Him, enduring them as a part of all the insults and beatings He endures in His Holy Passion, given to Him by sinners who reject Him, as a penance for their conversion. He is obedient1 and by His obedience, enduring the suffering sinners inflict on Him as a penance for them, He heals the wounds of their sins.2 He is the just servant3 who is just because He acts in accordance with Divine Love. When sinners reject Him in favor of sin, He gives Himself as a sacrifice to the Father, enduring the suffering inflicted on Him by sinners as a penance for their conversion that they might live in the Father's Love, abandoning their sin.

Because of His sacrifice of Himself, He is found worthy by the Father of all glory and honor and forever holds His Bride the Church in purity and Eternal Glory.4

1Mt 26:39
2Is 53:5
3Is 53:11
4Is 53:11-12 & Phil 2:5-11

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Hungry Christ

Hear the words of the Divine Bridegroom O Sinner: "I give Myself to the Father for Thy sake. It is my life. It is the reason why I came into this world. All I do is give Myself to the Father every minute of every day, every hour of every week, in the Holy Sacrament of the Altar. One Self-sacrifice of Mine made present in all time. I am always waiting, always watching out from my place looking at thee in thy sins.1 I am powerless to stop them because I have nailed Myself to the Cross. In My sacrifice of Myself I do naught but give Myself to the Father, that He might bring thee to Himself through Me. He shall call thee when it pleases Him. Until then I lie here hungry for a return of My love from thee, but I can only sacrifice Myself to the Father for thee and He shall call thee when it pleases Him. He shall raise thee gloriously from the dead to be with Me on the Life-giving Cross, free from all thy sins. Thou shalt be raised out of the muck and filth into which thou hast cast thyself and thou shalt live the glorious life for which thou wast created, because of My sacrifice of Myself to the Father, who created thee to live in His love and sent Me to bring thee to Him to remain there through the ages of ages. Amen."

1Pr 7:6-26

Friday, October 5, 2012

Living in a Monastery as a Family

The family is the domestic monastery. There have been many posts about this around the blogosphere and I feel inspired to write another. There are many monastic traditions, but they invariably involve a mixture of prayer as the foundation of their life and the manual labor by which the monks support themselves. Does a family not do the same? What is the role of the husband and father? He is protector and provider over his wife and children. It is his job to pray for them and bring them to the Lord. He is a mediator between God and his family. He leads them in prayer as a community and teaches them the faith, assisted by his wife every step of the way, similar to a priest assisting his bishop, or better, a monastic priest assisting his abbot. It is also the husband's job to provide for his family by his labors. Ora et labora as the Benedictines put it. Prayer and work. He gives himself to God through his prayers and his labors to take care of his family and bring them to Heaven. Having a career and a prayer life are not contrary to one another, rather they are meant to be two sides of the same coin. It is people who degrade having a career to a secular pursuit and degrade prayer to an emotional pursuit. The husband is called the Christ-figure of the home because what Christ does for His Bride (the Church) and Her children (us), the man does for his wife and children. They are an icon of the Church existing within the Church.

The woman, as Genesis tells us, exists to help the man. She assists him in doing the things he is unable. She uses what her husband provides her to feed and clothe their children. The husband specializes in providing for the family and the wife specializes in domestic duties. Neither of them can survive alone, nor are they supposed to. Only together do they form a completed whole. The children then live a life similar to the three monastic vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. The children must obey their parents in all things, offering to God the sacrifice of obedience when they don't like something. The children, upon reaching a certain age, must protect their chastity unto marriage. They will learn that sex is the giving of your entire self, even your very body, to your spouse to get her (or him) to Heaven, creating an environment in which God creates new life, and not an act based on emotions or physical pleasure. The children must also learn that things belong to the family more than they belong to the individual and will learn to share with other and avoid materialism. A little monastery; the domestic monastery.

Monday, October 1, 2012

The "Tolerant" Only Tolerate Themselves

"By their fruits you shall know them. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit, and the evil tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can an evil tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit, shall be cut down, and shall be cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits you shall know them."-Mt 7:16-20

I present to you this essay written by a (very smart) young woman denouncing feminism as evil and a dangerous to society.

Isn't it interesting that the "tolerant" only tolerate themselves and condemn anyone different from them as "backwards"? The only thing tolerated by this "tolerance" is sin and man's own arrogant pride, claiming to know better than God.

The evil fruits of arrogance are plain to see. Man is arrogant and forces his artificial life on everyone. God and the natural order are hated because man is arrogant and proudly declares himself superior to God; that he knows better and everything different is hated with rabid passion and slandered as "backwards" and "intolerant" because it won't allow man to follow his own will in his own arrogant pride. License to sin is falsely called "freedom". Pride is the root of all sin. Sin happens when man says to God, "No, my way is better." Some go so far that they demand that God support their fabricated life.

A young woman condemned sin because of the destruction it caused. By their fruits she knew them. She was persecuted because the only thing "sinful" in society is opposition to sin. Man is arrogant and demands to do as he pleases. If God doesn't like it, then he condemns God with satanic anger.

None of us are greater than God. A man-made order is wrong, just because it is from man. It's fake, artificial, man-made. The God-made natural order is good, just because it is from God. It is that for which we were created.

"Know ye that the Lord He is God: He made us, and not we ourselves. We are his people and the sheep of His pasture."-Ps 99:3

We do not know ourselves better than He does.

Some go as far as to lie about God, saying that He accepts their sins and created them to sin. That is a lie and a blasphemy. That is a direct attack on God and a fraud. God didn't die on the cross so that we would be able to sin. He died to remove us from our sins and bring us to the life for which He created us. He sacrifices Himself so we can be free from sin and live the life for which we were created.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

You Receive as You Give

"Now this I say: He who soweth sparingly, shall also reap sparingly: and he who soweth in blessings, shall also reap blessings. Every one as he hath determined in his heart, not with sadness, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver."-from today's Apostle Reading (2 Cor 9:6-11) in the Byzantine Rite.

Why should we be afraid to give? He who gives much to God, receives much in return. The more difficulty through which we give, the more we reap in return. So let us give joyfully and give everything to God for the more we give to Him, the more we shall receive from Him.

Our Blessed Lord tells us something similar to what St. Paul says: "Give, and it shall be given to you: good measure and pressed down and shaken together and running over shall they give into your bosom. For with the same measure that you shall mete withal, it shall be measured to you again."-Lk 6:38

Friday, September 28, 2012

We Are Living In the Dark

"If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me."-(Mt 16:24) Communion Verse for the Feast of King St. Wenceslaus today in the Latin Rite.

God leads us through darkness to bring us to the light; through suffering to bring us to Paradise. God leads us through suffering because it is a penance for our sins. God leads us to Paradise because it is that for which we were created. Both are expressions of His Justice.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Adoration and Patient Love

The Love of God needs no consolations or pleasures to survive. Divine Love gives itself regardless of what it receives because the salvation of the beloved is all that matters and it refuses to be consoled by anything except the salvation of the beloved. Divine Love can survive for years and years in the worst suffering because it gives itself to God and refuses to be satisfied but by the beloved's salvation. This we can see in this video below promoting Eucharistic Adoration. Christ, the Bridegroom, is the One who exhibits the Love of God. He gives Himself on the cross, which is made present in the Eucharist, regardless of who, if anyone, returns His love and gives themselves to God. He sacrifices Himself for His Bride the Church and is satisfied only by Her sanctification. He makes salvation available to all men through the Church. He makes salvation available to all men through the Church, but He makes salvation available to all men through the Church. He waits through time, regardless of how long, in patience giving Himself to the Father to sanctify His Bride. He gives His entire self to Her, even His Very Body, which She receives in the Eucharist.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Bring Us To Thy Purity

Bring us to thy Son's purity, which thou dost show in thy
flesh so perfectly, O Ever-Virgin Mother of God

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Great Rewards from Little Efforts

Miraculous Draught of Fish
Byzantine Rite
17th Sunday after Pentecost
Gospel: Lk 5:1-11

A little bit of prayer and penance offered to God results in great blessings. The more you give your life to God, the more glorious He will make you in His Love. The more humble you are in realizing that you don't deserve such blessings, the more blessings you receive.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Wash Us O Lord

Show us O Lord Thy mercy and grant us Thy salvation.1 We see how Thou hast forgiven others. We see the miraculous healings and conversions Thou hast worked in others. We now beg Thee for a small share of this same mercy for we have exceedingly degraded our souls, our flesh, and our name in the most foul and scandalous sins. We know that when Thou dost absolve sins in confession, Thou dost not only destroy them from the present, but also the past. They are destroyed completely. They never happened. The memory thereof which remains is in effect only a nightmare, for the sin never took place. It no longer used to exist. It is no longer in our past and cannot be used against us. Any claim then that the sins exist, even as only a part of the past, is a delusion and a lie for the sins have at that time been destroyed in confession, for Thou art the Lord of Time through the ages of ages. Amen.

1Ps 84:8

Sunday, September 16, 2012

We Adore Thee O Christ

We adore Thee O Christ and we bless Thee, for by Thy Cross Thou hast redeemed the world.

Relic of the Holy Cross at the Basilica of
the Holy Cross in Rome

Enable us with speech O Master that we might praise Thee, for we are chained and restricted by our sins. By sinning we have struck ourselves dumb, but we still see the greatness of Thy love which Thou dost still reveal to us so we beg Thee to release us from the bonds of our sins that we might give ourselves to Thee. Give us perseverance against these difficulties that weigh us down and separate us from Thee; these difficulties which we have brought upon ourselves by foolishly living as the world lives in its empty life of sin. Through these difficulties Thou dost still reveal Thy love to us and still dost call us to Thyself despite their massive and overwhelming size which to us is a mountain but to thee is but a small clod of earth. Break these bonds of sin that we might praise Thee and give ourselves to Thee for we wish to dwell in Thee restored to immaculate purity and nourished by Thy love.

Friday, September 14, 2012

We Bow to Thy Cross O Lord and Glorify Thy Holy Ressurection

Fill us with Thy mercy that we might dwell in Thee. 

Thou didst sacrifice Thyself upon the Cross O Bridegroom but we have defiled ourselves in sin and are incapable of even providing for ourselves.

Fill us with Thy mercy that we might dwell in Thee.

We do not deserve to have Thee because we lost ourselves to sin, but we still desire to dwell in Thee so we give ourselves to Thy Mercy. Remove the law of sin from over us and heal the stroke of our wound so we can give ourselves to Thee.

Fill us with Thy mercy that we might dwell in Thee.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Meditations on the Holy Rosary

Joyful Mysteries
1. Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary -We pray that sinner will be obedient to God's will for their lives.
2. Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary -We pray that Our Lord will visit sinners.
3. Nativity of Our Lord -We Pray that Our Lord will make His dwelling with sinners.
4. Presentation of Our Lord -We pray that sinners will present themselves to the Lord in Confession.
5. Finding of Our Lord in the Temple -We pray that sinners will find Our Lord in the Tabernacle

Sorrowful Mysteries
1. Agony in the Garden of Olives - We contemplate the Divine Bridegroom suffering under the full knowledge of the life of sin of His Bride, the Church.
2. Flagellation of the Lord - We contemplate the Bridegroom suffering under the lashes; the weights on the whips digging into Him like the sins of His Bride.
3. Crowning of the Lord - We contemplate the Bridegroom in full nuptial regalia; His wedding crown is become a torture device, the sins of His Bride piercing Him like a thousand needles on His Head. His scepter, His symbol of authority over her, is become a symbol of mockery and rejection.
4. The Lord Carries His Cross - We contemplate the Bridegroom suffering under the weight of the cross, which bears down on Him like the life of sin of His Bride.
5. Crucifixion and Death of the Lord - We contemplate the Bridegroom giving Himself to the Father to sanctify His Bride. He gives His entire Self to Her, even His Very Body, which She receives in the Eucharist.

Glorious Mysteries
1. Resurrection of the Lord - We pray that sinners will rise from the death of sin.
2. Ascension of the Lord - We pray that sinners will ascend to the highest levels of prayer.
3. Decent of the Holy Ghost - We pray that sinners will be set on fire by the Love of God.
4. Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary - We pray that sinners will be taken up to Heaven.
5. Crowning of the Blessed Virgin Mary - We pray that sinners will be obedient to the authority of the queen.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Royal Wedding in Washington, DC

With thanks to Rorate, there comes news of a Royal Wedding in Washington, DC this past Saturday on the Feast of the Nativity of the Mother of God. Well, it was an Imperial Wedding to be precise. Archduke Imre of Austria, great-grandson of Blessed Karl, last Emperor of Austria (whose feast day is his wedding day btw, 21 October) married Kathleen Walker, who is from Washington, at Old St. Mary's in D.C. A Solemn High Mass followed the traditional ceremony. The priest was Msgr. Charles Pope of the Archdiocese of Washington, the deacon was Fr. Gregory Thompson and the subdeacon was Fr. Edwin Perez, both of the Diocese of Arlington. H.E. Paul Loverde, Bishop of Arlington, was in choir and presented the couple with an Apostolic Blessing from H.H. Benedict XVI. The photographer's coverage can be found here

Another photographer posted photos of the royalty in attendance here. Luxembourg was especially well represented as the young archduke is related to them via his mother. His Royal Highness the Duke of Braganca and Prince Royal of Portugal was present. That photographer is quite picky about his copyrights so I'll have to settle for a direct link to the best photo of the Duke of Braganca instead of the picture itself. Here however are another set of photos:

We Have Another Penitent

Today on the Byzantine Rite is the Feast of St. Theodora of Alexandria, penitent. You can read her story in detail here and more accounts here. I love discovering new saints and discovering a penitent is a treasure. I have a great devotion to penitents. I have already written about St. Mary Magdalene, St. Mary of Egypt, St. Pelagia of Antioch, and St. Margaret of Cortona. I find it interesting how all the penitents became nuns after their conversion. Sts. Mary Magdalene, Mary of Egypt and Pelagia of Antioch specifically became hermits. St. Margaret of Cortona founded an order of nuns and St. Theodora, hiding her identity, also became a nun.

St. Theodora was a young married woman who was tempted by a rich man to commit adultery with him after he was in turn tempted by her youthful beauty. Unsuccessful, he bribed a harlot to convince Theodora to lie with him. She told Theodora that any sin committed in secret was not seen by God and didn't count. Convinced by this lie, Theodora committed adultery with the rich suitor. Coming to her senses, she realized the malice of her sin and beat herself furiously and without mercy. Her conscience tortured her as she tortured her body, so she went to a revered abbess at a local monastery to relate her tale and find some relief. The abbess told her of God's mercy and St. Mary Magdalene who washed Our Blessed Lord's feet with her tears, dried them with her hair, and anointed them with spikenard. Resolving to do penance for her sin, she decided to disguise her sinful identity and enter a monastery of men, so that no one would find her.

The abbot denied her entrance to test her resolve and allowed her to enter after she spent the night at the gate. "Theodore" amazed the other monks by her strict observance of fasting and all night prayer. After eight years, on one occasion she happened to be sent on an errand to buy provisions, being instructed to stay at a certain monastery if there was a delay and she needed a place to stay. A young woman was also staying at the guest house and not realizing that the monk was really a nun, tried to seduce "Theodore". Not surprisingly unsuccessful, she went and seduced another guest, one who really was a man, and became pregnant. The young harlot's father questioned her about the identity of his grandson's father and she claimed it was Monk Theodore. Theodora's abbot initially didn't believe the accusation, but when the child was forced on the monastery, St. Theodora was expelled in disgrace. She accepted this trial as further expiation for her adultery years before, raising this adopted child in a hut near the monastery.

After seven years the abbot re-admitted Theodora to the monastery upon the pleading of the monks. She lived a hermit in the monastery with the child. After a further two years, following a private revelation to the abbot, she was allowed to once again live as a part of the community and soon her sanctity became apparent to the other monks. Before she died she instructed her step-son, "to obey the abbot, to preserve tranquility, to be meek and without malice, to avoid obscenity and silliness, to love non-covetousness, and not to neglect their communal prayer." One last time she asked God forgiveness for her adultery and passed peacefully while praying with her step-son.

In a second revelation, the abbot learned Monk Theodore's true identity and to remove any shame and ill-repute relating to the bastard child, revealed her bosom to prove she was a woman and not the father of the child. Now that it was known she was doing penance for adultery, news of her death reached her former husband, who himself entered the monastery and the step-son too became a monk of the same monastery and eventually its abbot. Now it will be asked, if she was to expiate her sin of adultery, why didn't she just return to her husband and be faithful? Why would God allow her to live as a nun instead of being faithful to her husband? Isn't that just more infidelity? "For my thoughts are not your thoughts: nor your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are exalted above the earth, so are my ways exalted above your ways, and my thoughts above your thoughts." (Is 55:8-9) Now it seems clear that God wanted both of them to enter monasteries and that their marriage was something spoken between them on their own accord, independent from God's will for them. God gave them suffering so that they could expiate their sins and the sins of others and brought them each to a monastery on His own time because that was His will for them. We can try as we might to build up our own lives according to our wills, but God always gets His way...

Dismissal hymns from the Divine Office (roughly equate to the collects of the Latin Rite):

Troparion: (Tone 8)
In thee the image was preserved with exactness, O Mother; for taking up thy cross, thou didst follow Christ, and by thy deeds thou didst teach us to overlook the flesh, for it passeth away, but to attend to the soul since it is immortal. Wherefore, O righteous Theodora, thy spirit rejoiceth with the Angels.

Kontakion: (Tone 2)
With fasting didst thou consume thy body utterly; with vigilant prayer didst thou entreat thy Fashioner, that thou shouldst receive the complete forgiveness of the sin thou hadst wrought; which receiving in truth, thou didst mark out the path of repentance for us all.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

The Bridegroom Gives Himself to the Father

Icon of the Nymphios (Bridegroom)

Come O Sinner and behold how Christ the Bridegroom sacrifices Himself to the Father for thy sake. He is both priest and victim, sacrificing Himself to bring thee to Heaven. He gives Himself to the Father to fill thee with the Father's love. Thou shalt return His love. Filled with Him, thou dost become a part of Him, and as a part of Him, thou dost rest in His Heart.

Christ gives Himself to the Father as a mediator; giving thee the love of the Father and giving thee to the Father that thou mightest enter in Heaven. Behold then how the earthly Sacrament of Marriage is only an icon of this mystical union betwixt Christ and His Church. The bridegroom gives himself to God to fill his bride with Divine Love and bring her to heaven. Receiving him, she gives herself to God through her bridegroom to return his love and get him to Heaven. Christ gives His love to them, and receiving it, they return His love that they might rest in Him for eternity. Their union is but a microcosm inside the union of Christ and His Church, imitating them from within them, that they too might enter Heaven.

Give thyself to Christ that He might make thee pure, cleansing thee of thy sins such that thou hast never given thyself to any sin whatsoever. Give thyself to the Immaculate Mother of God that she who was truly a virgin after childbearing might bring thee into her purity. Give thyself to the Father through the Divine Bridegroom so that the His love for thee might be complete.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

We Sing to Thee O Theotokos

"Genesis tis Theotokou"
Birth of the Mother of God
We sing to thee O Theotokos on thy birthday. On this joyous day we grieve for those of us drowning in lives of sin, but also rejoice for God has given us so Immaculate an Intercessor, who dost gloriously crush their sins under thy virginal foot. We beg thee O Theotokos to raise the sinner up to thy purity, O thou who art truly a virgin after childbearing. Raise the sinner to purity for it is not right for the Love of Thy Son to dwell in a vessel made impure by sin, which prompted the Lord to create thee in thy mother's womb as a pure vessel for His Son. Nor is it right for Thy Son's love to go un-returned, so we beg thee know to raise the sinner out of the defilement of worldly pleasures that the sinner might be a pure vessel for the Flesh of Thy Son the Divine Bridegroom, and receiving His Flesh, become a part of Him and dwell in His Heart, so wounded by sin. Do not fail us O Theotokos, whose purity dost overpower the greatest of sins!

Friday, September 7, 2012

The Power of Prayer-Russia in WWI

H/T to Fr. Blake:

My Russian is weak (I know mostly prayers, both in Church Slavonic and the vernacular), but I still know enough to figure out that they are praying throughout the whole video, not just when they kneel before the icon. It is noteworthy that the two ships were just as close to the mines, but only the one who prayed survived. The movie is The Admiral, which takes place in World War I.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A Modern Day Harlot Becomes a Penitent

Former Playboy Playmate Searches For Noah’s Ark, Prays the Rosary “Every Night” With Her Kids-CatholicVote.org

Hopefully she will come to be numbered among St. Mary Magdalene, St. Mary of Egypt, St. Pelagia of Antioch and St. Margaret of Cortona. Pray for more of these conversions. The formation in the faith in so called "catholic" schools is so poor that a worldly life of sin is inevitable. If we don't teach our children to fear God, the world will teach them to sin and they (like this lady) will only learn when it is too late after they have already destroyed their lives by living as the world lives.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Lord of Mercy and Lord of Love

We deserve death, destruction, and the loss of all we hold dear because the sins we have committed O Lord, but Thou dost deserve to hold us in Thy Heart in purity for Thou art Almighty God. Let the blessings to which Thou art entitled overrule the damnations to which we art entitled for we demanded to take charge of our lives and live in our pleasures on our own terms and refused to surrender ourselves to Thee and live in Thy love on Thy terms. We do not deserve Thy mercy, O Lover of Mankind, but Thou dost deserve to have us in Thy love. We have broken Thy Heart by our sins, give us Thy love to raise us out of our sins that we might dwell in Thee.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Mother of Eternal Light

Icon of the Theotokos Directress, known in Latin
terms as Our Lady of Light, who directs us to her
Son, the Light of the World. 

The Eastern Churches, in the Akathist of Thanksgiving chant: "When the lightning flash has lit up the feasting-hall, how feeble seems the light of the lamps." When you have a small LED light in a dark room in the middle of the night, the light seems very bright, for it is surrounded by nothing other than more of itself. But when the same light is lit at the brightest point of the noonday sun, there is so much glare of the sun on the bulb that none of the bulb's own light can be seen.

So it is with human emotions and worldly pleasures versus Divine Love. Sin on it's own seems good when it is surrounded only by more of itself away from God. But when the sin is held up to Christ the Light of the World, the light of sin is so insignificant that it cannot even be seen-so radically more intense is the light of Divine Love over the sin of the world. It is a difference that can only be appreciated when you have seen both. Show someone the glory of Divine Love and once they have considered it seriously, they will see themselves as unworthy because they degraded themselves in such horrible sins. You don't even need to mention someone's sins to get them to repent. 

"And the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold, as the light of seven days: in the day when the Lord shall bind up the wound of his people, and shall heal the stroke of their wound."-Isaias 30:26

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Lord of Time and Lord of Love

Come O Sinner and heed the call of the Divine Bridegroom: Why O Sinner dost thou live thy life without Me? Am I not good enough for thy life? Is thy life so much greater than I that I have not been able to be a part of it? Thou hast lived thy years and all the events of thy life have been experienced without Me; what is there left for Me now? What is left to give Me for thou hast given thyself to the world's emotions and pleasures and lived all of life without Me? As God I created thee to live in My love but thou hast given thyself to the empty emotions and pleasures of the world. What have you left to give Me?

Give thyself to Me and I will fill thee with My love. I will fill thee with My love, which cleanse thee and restore thy purity. I do not forgive by ignoring thy sins or refusing to give thee just punishment; rather I forgive by destroying thy sins from time and space. Once absolved, the sinful event in the past no longer exists. There is nothing in the past for Me to remember against thee. It is no longer a part of thy past. The effects of the sin exist without a cause for the cause never existed. Those who remember the sin remember something that never took place for I, as the Lord of Time, have destroyed the event from the past. All that is left is My Divine Love which destroyed a sin that no longer took place. Confession is that by which I change the past. Thy sin is destroyed because I sacrificed Myself to the Father to make thee holy. Give thyself to the Father through Me to return My love. I will give Myself to Thee and, filled with My love, thou dost become a part of Me and thou shalt dwell in My Heart. Arise, arise O Sinner and be washed in My Blood. Arise, arise and utter a canticle with thy purity fully restored.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Civil Disobedience

When the government violates the moral law, we must disobey the government. In such a situation, to obey the government is to disobey God and vice versa. St. John the Forerunner condemned the government for its immorality (the adultery of Herod Antipas-funny how marriage is an issue just like today and further showing that government leaders are not exempt from what happens in their "private lives") and was arrested and later beheaded because of it, all the while being just before God because he defended morality in the face of the government's immorality unto the point of death, rejecting any sort of "compromise" or "understanding", desiring only the conversion of sinners. Rightly did Christ the Bridegroom call His Best Man the greatest man born of woman.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Uneaten Bridegroom

We do Thee homage O Divine Bridegroom who art abandoned here upon Thine altar. Thou beholdest O God how sinners have abandoned and rejected Thee in favor of their empty pleasures. Even through rejection, Thou dost still sacrifice Thyself to the Father for the conversion of sinners. Even through rejection, Thou dost still offer sinners Thy love and Thy Very Body, O Uneaten Bridegroom, to strengthen them unto life eternal for even through rejection thou art truly Our Bridegroom and Thou truly dost offer Thyself as Our Bridegroom to the Father for our salvation. Raise sinners from the dead O Just One for just as death could not contain Thee O Ressurected Bridegroom, so too no illegitimate life of sin will be able to contain sinners once they are filled with the honey of Divine Love. Give me to eat Thy honey from the bee O God who beholds all! Give unto sinners honey from the rock to raise them to new life!