Today I offer you a post which at first will seem a strange choice for the end of the liturgical year, for this post has as its subject the Resurrection. It was originally posted this past Easter-time. But we who have lived a very long time are aware that each end is a beginning and so the cycle continues. I have been reading “The Last Mass of Padre Pio” and would like to write on that wonderful book. But as I am not able, Msgr. Robert Hugh Benson’s great essay will provide a commentary. For each Mass is a Passion, Death and Resurrection.
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The Paradox of the Resurrection
The following began as a new post for the Feast of the Resurrection, but I saved it for now so we can think on it and consider it in relation to this current chastisement. We are given this brief period of introspection to strengthen us for what is coming very quickly. Do not be caught unprepared, please use this time to gather your family, strengthen them spiritually and live your consecrations as never before. I tell you, be prepared for this great spiritual battle.
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“. . . On Easter Day look at Him again and see how He lives as never before. See how the Life that has been His for thirty years – the Life of God made Man – itself pales almost to a phantom before the glory of that same Life transfigured by Death. Three days ago He fainted beneath the scourge and nails; now He shows the very scars of His Passion to be the emblems of immortal strength. Three days ago He spoke in human words to those only that were near Him, and limited Himself under human terms of space and time; He speaks now in every heart. Three days ago He gave His Body to the few who knelt at His Table; to-day in ten thousand tabernacles that same Body may be worshipped by all who come.
In a word, He has exchanged a Natural Life for a Supernatural in every plane at once. He has laid down the Natural Life of His Body to take it back again supernaturalized for ever. He has died that His Life may be released; He has finished in order to begin.
It is easy, then, to see why it is that the Church dies daily, why it is that she is content to be stripped of all that makes her life effective, why she too permits her hands to be bound and her feet fettered and her beauty marred and her voice silenced so far as men can do those things.
She is human? Yes; she dwells in a body that is prepared for her, but prepared chiefly that she may suffer in it. Her far-reaching hands are not hers merely that she may bind up with them the broken-hearted, nor her swift feet hers merely that she may run on them to succour the perishing, nor her head and heart hers merely that she may ponder and love.
But all this sensitive human organism is hers that at last she may agonize in it, bleed from it from a thousand wounds, be lifted up in it to draw all men to her cross.
She does not desire, then, in this world, the throne of her Father David, nor the kind of triumph which is the only kind that the world understands to be so. She desires one life and one triumph only – the Risen Life of her Saviour. And this, at last, is the transfiguration of her Humanity by the power of her Divinity and the vindication of them both.” (Excerpt From: Robert Hugh Benson. “Paradoxes of Catholicism.”)
Dear readers, many saints have assured us that our trials are sent by God, or allowed by God’s Providence, in order to form us more perfectly in the image of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and the current darkness and isolation are God’s merciful provision of grace for our own entry into His resurrection. For we do know, but often forget, that we must be nailed with His nails to His Cross (for our cross is only ever His cross) and laid in His tomb in order to rise with Him. For it is only those who have generously consented to this crucifixion, led by our Mother, sustained by her love – the love Christ wills us both to have for one another – Mother and poor, sinful child! – that we are sustained in the darkness of this flesh of our crucifixion. Without her, we are lost. With her we shall unfailingly rise to live with Life, in Truth and Love, in glory ever after.
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For those who read these words in an Eastertide of subdued rejoicing, under foreboding circumstances, must know that for this time, we only progress by the way in which we are led by Saint John of the Cross. Nada. For Christ our Lord won through the most grievous, painful losses. Who thinks they will follow Him without the pain, without the loss? Trust in Him. Not to give you joy, for this is not time for joy. Not to give you vain hope. But that our hope may be purified in the ground of our beseeching. To give you life in death. [end of essay]
Note for October 28, 2020: Make use of this time given you. Prepare spiritually.
Remember – Our Lady needs us to obey: First Saturdays of Reparation, daily rosary, at least 5 mysteries, wear her brown scapular and live your Total Consecration to her Immaculate Heart, offering daily duties in reparation and for the conversion of poor sinners.
† Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.
† Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!
† St. Joseph, protect us, protect our families, protect our priests.
† St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.
~ by evensong for love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, King.
Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin! Give me strength against thine enemies!