Show Notes – A Good Habit 5/21/14

A Good Habit Show NotesGood morning, everyone! I’m trying to be super diligent and get these Show Notes posted since I’ve slacked off on posting the last ones.

On yesterday’s show we were joined by Dr. David Delaney, doctor of systematic theology and director of the Mother of the Americas Institute.  Our topic was everyone’s not-so-favorite subject: persecution and suffering.  But not just that, because the two essentials for enduring any kind of suffering are joy and hope.  The focus was on Robert P. George’s address at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast last week.  You can find the full text of the address here, or the video here (his address begins at 15:10 in the video).  These are weighty words that deserve to be read and taken to heart.

Also, on a previous episode we promised to give you the link for listening to MP3s of Fr. Mitch Pacwa’s talks on Divine Mercy which he gave here in San Antonio during the Divine Mercy SA Weekend.  Those talks will be available here.  Although I did not see them yet, there are lots of other great talks by Father you should check out.

When one day is simply not enough

adamevechristHow can our poor minds even begin to understand the enormity of Easter, called by early Christians ‘The Feast of Feasts’.

The wonder and joy of Easter cannot be contained in one day, it must spill out into many
days of celebration!  The Church shows us just how important and central to our faith this feast is, by mandating a full Octave (from the Latin word octava, eight) of celebration.  Christmas is the only other feast that does so.  Eight days of celebrating!

Those of us who pray the Divine office pray the same psalms of Easter Sunday for eight days to underscore this wonderful truth.

As our brothers and sisters in the Jewish faith celebrate the Feast of Passover for seven days, as commanded by God to Moses in Exodus, we as Christians, can do no less on this solemn sacred Feast of Easter, and in fact,we take it one step further, one day further.

The Church Fathers speak of the number seven as the ‘total of temporal existence’.  The great Saint Augustine speaks of the eighth day of the octave as ‘taking us out of time and into eternity’.  Jesus leads us into that eternity, into that eternal light.  Each day gives us the opportunity to live with our Lord in that eternal reality, being in the world, but not of it.  As Adam was pulled from his prison of darkness into the light by the very Author of Light, the New Adam, we too are freed to walk in that Light of truth and grace, we can live in that eternal reality in a very authentic way, each and every day.

As the Octave takes us into rest of the fifty days of this Easter season, let us really rejoice in the true knowledge of a very real hope, the hope and joy only Jesus can bring!

Post-Partisan Depression?

A week ago yesterday we spent the day with the only person who can save our country, Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament.  We, like so many of you, had high hopes for the election.  But as we learned later that night, the American electorate has chosen a different road for our future.  Surprisingly, we don’t feel as depressed by this as one would expect – as we ourselves even expected.  This is not to discount the difficulties and sufferings we will all have to endure now, there is no doubt that all Americans are going to go through some very hard times in the future.  But we still have hope because, as dark as things may look, God is still in control, He loves us, and He has the power to turn this disaster into something great.  He specializes in that, actually.  If you don’t believe it, just look at a Crucifix.

Our hope lies in God, our trust is in God.  We weren’t looking for an earthly savior (and we certainly did not get one) but we must trust God.  No matter who had won the election we would still be facing an increasingly secular, anti-Christian culture.

Christopher Dawson said every age is an age of crisis for the Church.  How are we to face the crisis of this age? With hope, with faith, with charity.  It is not our calling to sit back, self-satisfied, in a time of peace and prosperity for the Church.  The culture of death opens its mouth wider and wider each day to swallow beauty, truth, dignity, and life.  Fighting the beast with Truth and Life isn’t just one option, it’s our only option.  Our lives and hearts must be firmly rooted in Jesus Christ and His Church.  This requires a daily, even hourly, re-orienting of ourselves toward Him.

Catholics should be good students of history.  Though persecution hasn’t been as savage in America as in other countries, we cannot expect to be exempt from that forever.  The important thing is to prepare ourselves to defend the Faith, even when it’s uncomfortable and unpopular, and to strengthen ourselves spiritually, being faithful in the small things so that, by God’s grace, when the big things come our way we will stand firmly with Christ and His Church.

No prayer is ever wasted, even when things don’t turn out in ways that seem best to us.  God’s ears are never closed to our petitions, and we won’t stop petitioning Him for our country and our religious freedom.  Now is the time to pray for an outpouring of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  The culture of death can’t be voted away, we must conquer it one heart at a time, beginning with our own.

God is always good.  And not only is He always good, but He is always God, all the time, despite our temptation to operate as though He is on vacation or has more important matters to tend to.  He is the Lord of every situation we face.  On Sundays, solemnities and feast days, as part of the Liturgy of the Hours, we pray the Te Deum, a hymn of praise to God that reminds us of the reasons for our hope.  It closes with a responsory which boldly claims:  In you, Lord, is our hope:/and we shall never hope in vain.  Truly, because our hope lies in the Eternal One, we can hold fast to it always.