“In the sudden possession of me by Christ, neither my senses nor my imagination had any part; I only felt in the midst of my suffering the presence of a love, like that which one can read in the smile on a beloved face.” Simone Weil
We know the Church needs money to operate, but today’s CEO priests seem to be nothing but fundraisers. At a recent Mass in Queens, NY, parishioners were subjected to 6 different pitches for money from the pulpit and in the bulletin. The priest saying the Mass was from Arizona — representing a Catholic 501(c)(3). He never mentioned the gospel in his homily but spent the entire time trying to get money from people he didn’t know and would never see again. The last thing he said to the congregation was “I’ll really feel better if you stuff the envelope for me so I don’t get fired on Monday.” Especially galling was the priest saying that his organization takes prayer requests “pretty seriously,” adding that once a week the workers in their Florida office pray for donors. What about you Father?
“My house will be a house of prayer. But you have turned it into a robbers den.” Luke 19: 46-47
For priests to be true shepherds they need to know and love Our Lord, know something about the world, and really care about the people in the pews. If they do that they’ll have what they need.
Artists: Andrei Rublev & Danil Chorny, Russia c. 1408
“Lord, accept the gift of our worship and hear our prayers for mercy. Keep alive in our hearts the truth you gave us through the ministry of your apostles Peter and Paul.” Daily Roman Missal
The Jewish Museum in New York is presenting Chagall: Love, War, and Exile — through February 2, 2014. The exhibition focuses on the art of Marc Chagall (1887-1985) from the 1930s-40s, when he was living in France and the United States. Of the 53 paintings in the show 20 include representations of the Crucifixion.
From the museum’s press release on Chagall’s use of Jesus and the Crucifixion: “Most unexpected is the recurring appearance of the figure of the crucified Jesus as a metaphor for war, Jewish suffering and persecution…Jesus on the cross was a symbol for victims of persecution, and an appeal to conscience that equated the martyrdom of Jesus with the suffering of the Jewish people.”
Even beyond using the crucifixion as a theme in his work, Chagall, as a person and artist, identified himself with Jesus Christ on the cross. In one of his crucifixion paintings he replaced INRI with “Marc Ch”. He also seemed to identify with the risen Christ.
Am I finished?
Is my picture done?
Everything shines, flows, runs.
Only that land is mine
That lies in my soul. —Chagall
Top Painting: Calvary, 1912
Bottom Painting: Exodus, 1952-66