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

Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Bees Giving the Honey of Divine Love

Feast of the Three Holy Hierarchs: Sts. Basil the Great, John Chrysostom, and Gregory the Theologian
From the Sessionals at Matins during All-Night Vigil last night:
Like bees hovering over the meadow of the Scriptures,* you embraced the wonderful pollen of their flowers.* Together you have produced for all the faithful* the honey of your teachings for their complete delight.* Therefore as we each enjoy this, we cry out with gladness:* blessed ones, even after death,* be advocates for us who praise you!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Discretion in Words and Discretion in Silence


"The ruler should be discreet in keeping silence, profitable in speech; lest he utter what ought to be suppressed of suppress what he ought to utter. For, as incautious speaking leads into error, so indiscreet silence leaves in error those who might have been instructed. For often improvident rulers, fearing to lose human favor, shrink timidly from speaking freely the things that are right; and, according to the voice of the Truth (John 10:12), serve unto the custody of the flock by no means with the zeal of shepherds, but in the way of hirelings; since they fly when the wolf comes if they hide themselves under silence."-St. Gregory Dialogus, Pope of Rome

Sunday, January 26, 2014

God Changes the Past Like Child's Play

How can God forgive sins? How can God change the past? How can God make the defiled undefiled?

By His Grace, the purity that existed previously is made to survive impurity, thus destroying impurity just as Life survived death and thus destroyed death. Absolution in the Mystery of Forgiveness is a participation in the Resurrection where the sinner rises to new life just as Christ rose to new life. The sin never existed. The previous purity is made to survive and sin ceases to exist. It is no longer in the person's past. The person is no longer a sinner. They are pure again by this participation in the Resurrection where Life tramples death by death.

Hristos voskrese iz mertvih, smertiyu smert poprav, i sushchim vo grobeh zhivot daruvav.

Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and on those in the tombs, bestowing life.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Turning Back to Eternity

Why do faithful Catholics often get accused of "turning back the clock" or "living in the past" or being "outdated" or other such insults?

Divine Love is not native to time nor to this world. Divine Love is native to eternity. Eternity is the absence of time. In eternity, there is no previous moment, no future moment, only a single instant that continues infinitely: the "permanent now" (which btw, is why God-and consequently Church Teaching-cannot change).

So in this life, Divine Love gives us the instinctive urge to "turn back the clock" to a time before we sinned and stop time at that moment-because that is the very nature of Heaven: no sin, but only union with God; and no time, but only eternity. We are called to be sinless and to be so in eternity. This is impossible for us, but for God it is possible and He offers it to us through the Seven Mysteries of the Church.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Divine Charity Towards Neighbor

35th Sunday after Pentecost
Apostle: Col 3:12-16
Put ye on therefore, as the elect of God, holy, and beloved, the bowels of mercy, benignity, humility, modesty, patience: Bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if any have a complaint against another: even as the Lord hath forgiven you, so do you also. But above all these things have charity, which is the bond of perfection: And let the peace of Christ rejoice in your hearts, wherein also you are called in one body: and be ye thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you abundantly, in all wisdom: teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles, singing in grace in your hearts to God.

Sure, we are to be charitable towards one another, but loyalty towards God and rejection of the world is above all, or else our charity towards our neighbor is empty vanity. If our charity towards our neighbor does not lead them to the love of Christ and away from the empty pleasures of the world, what good is it? If our charity towards them cannot do that then it is not from Christ in the first place. We are to love our neighbor, but love of God both comes first and is greater (we love our neighbor as ourselves, but love God with our whole heart, soul, and mind-Mt 22:37-40). We love our neighbor for the sake of God that His Love might be lit in them and they be joined to God and no longer to the pleasures of this world. That is why God had us love them in the first place. All else is a temptation.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Subduing the Flesh to Raise the Body

Our Holy Venerable Father Anthony the Great, Founder of Christian Monasticism.

One of the stichera at Vespers at Psalm 140:
Tone 4
Burning with divine love and radiant with the Spirit,
your soul rose to desire truly infinite love!
You despised flesh and blood, and lived apart from the world,
yet you were united to it by great silence and abstinence.
Therefore you were fulfilled as you desired,
and as a star radiant with blessings, Anthony, you illumine our souls!

Let us imitate Our Holy Father Anthony and develop self-control over our flesh, that subduing the flesh, we may have it serve the spirit and be taken up into the exchange of Divine Love.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Let's Not Be Picky-Choosey About Life Issues

The sins of contraception and abortion are both the sin of lust. They are the same sin: sex without reproduction. Abortion is not about murder; its about lust. It never was about murder. It was always about lust. Its source and motivation is lust; not murder. We cannot be picky-choosey about which life issues we support. If you agree with only some of Christianity's Teachings, you're not Christian; you merely support a only couple of things from it and start your own "church" as a result. If you support only part of the Pro-Life movement, you're not actually on board, but merely pretending to be by supporting only one or two things from it.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Obeying the Lord Who Obeys the Lord

Today is the Feast of the Circumcision of the Lord. In His Divinity, Christ makes the law; in His humanity, He must obey the law. By obeying the law, He teaches us obedience. By obeying the Father, He teaches us to obey the Father, for He came into the world to lead us to the Father and separate us from sin by His life-giving death.