I'm really tired and my late-onset dyslexia seems to be working full-throttle, so I can't promise you much of a post here, but here goes.
I turned on the television at 5:30 AM to see what kind of commute I was in for and got the shock of my life: Pope Benedict XVI, a German shepherd if ever there was one, resigned. Then I learned this evening that Roz (Shadowlands) apparently passed away in September. Then I visited a blog I drop in on from time to time and learned that the author has been in a severe bout of depression, barely hanging on but for the Grace of Almighty God.
I have been approached nearly every single day by yet another person with an urgent prayer request, and there seems to be no let-up in sight of the trials and tribulations that shake our families and our faith. Lord knows I have a few of my own and I thank all of you for your prayers and am always touched and honored when you ask me to pray for you.
In the meantime, we have first-graders being gunned down by the classroom-full, abortionists writing about the most effective way to keep those pesky babies from surviving a murder attempt, and weather unlike anything I've ever seen in my lifetime tossing houses about like pieces on a Monopoly board.
What is going on?
It certainly feels as if the plates hidden deep beneath the world's surface have made a seismic shift. However, that is not for me to speculate on, tempting as it may be. I wish I had a dollar for every St Malachy prediction sent to me via email today. Yet another person contacted me about an Irish visionary who claims to have revelations from Our Lord Himself that Pope Benedict XVI was not long for his papacy.
I have no control over any of this, nor any foresight. All I know is that I am a sinful person who was incredibly blessed to have undergone a profound conversion and despite my attempts at holiness, I fail miserably on a daily basis. I am also reminded that I am "dealing with the God of Mercy" and that "as often as (I) shall beg for it", God will be pleased to bestow His Mercy on me.
Every Saturday, I go to Mass and Adoration at the same place, and every week, I see the same gentleman in line for confession. I thought I went to confession often but I don't go weekly as this fellow does. I was just thinking the other day that if the sacrament is available to us, we should take advantage of it. If nuns can find something to confess every week, surely I can. If we knew that a certain fruit or vitamin would stave off cancer, we would indulge in it often, would we not? So why the aversion to confession? God already knows all, and the remote chance for less-than-smooth treatment from the priest is inconsequential, isn't it?
Every day in the Morning Offering I pray "Dear God, I do not know what will happen to me today, I only know that it will not have been unforeseen by You and will be directed toward my greater good for all eternity."
One way or another, the end comes for us all. This brings me so much sadness when I think that some members of my own family may not be headed in the same direction that I pray I am. I liken it to waking up in the middle of the night with the house on fire and having to watch one of my own children left behind, pounding on a window, pleading for help. Once I'm on the other side of the divide, there will be little to nothing I can do.
Pray unceasingly. And please remember to pray for the repose of the soul of Roz. I believe she suffered in ways unknown to most of us but I also believe she trusted completely in Jesus. May her soul and all the souls of the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.
On a slightly lighter note, I picked this up over at Ars orandi. You might find it interesting.
As for Pope Benedict, I don't believe he would have taken this step if he wasn't certain it was better for the Church that he did. I am grateful that he was Pope at all and pray his replacement will be someone who will stay the course on which Benedict embarked. Please God that it might be Cardinal Burke.
Whatever is in store for us Catholics, it won't be anywhere near as bad as what we deserve. In the meantime, on the eve of the Feast of the Holy Face, think of Therese.
When St. Therese was in the throes of her worst agony, one of her sisters asked her what she did to pass the time at night. "Mother, how I was tempted last night, but I made acts of faith and looked at the Holy Face the whole time. " During her long days of confinement to her bed, Therese passed the hours by adoring the Holy Face and wiping the image she loved so much with rose petals, "in imitation of Veronica".
What treatment have I accorded the Holy Face? I'm afraid to say, but God-willing, there will be time enough to rectify that.