One must understand how liberation from sin is caused. Two things enter into it: divine grace, which is the principle agent, and the human will, which cooperates with the grace. Accordingly Augustine said: “He who created you without you, will not justify you without you.” Thomas Aquinas
The culture of death has at times been advanced by some who see themselves as ‘pro-life’ Catholics. This can happen when people become Americanized. Better to put the activism and nationalism aside, and be united with the Lord, seeking to see with His Eyes and love with His Heart — then we’ll know what to do.
After jogging to our local farmer’s market this morning, carrying a milk bottle wrapped in a canvas bag (from an art fair). I noticed a bird had left a fresh souvenir on one side of the bag.
When life imitates ads we can end up with the Big Nothing. At least one bird agrees.
“I, the Lord, have called you to serve the cause of right; I have taken you by the hand and formed you. I have appointed you as covenant of the people and light of the nations, to open the eyes from prison, and those who live in darkness from the dungeon.” Isaiah 42: 6
“Whatever may be the historical and prophetic periods within which Isaih’s vision is set, we can well say that his words are fully fulfilled in Christ, in the Word who is his own but also ‘of the Father who sent him’ (Jn 5:37); in his Gospel which renews, completes and vivifies the law; and in the Holy Spirit who is sent by virtue of Christ’s redemption through his cross and resurrection, thus fully what God had already announced through the prophets in the old covenant. With Christ and in the Holy Spirit there is a new covenant, of which the prophet Ezekiel had prophesied as the mouthpiece of God: ‘I will give you a new heart and a new spirit: I will take out of your flesh the heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to observe my ordinances…and you will be my people, and I will be your God'(Ez 36: 26-28).” Saint John Paul II, The Spirit – Giver of Life and Love, 1996
Elizabeth Bayley Seton (1774-1821) was a true daughter of the early American Republic. She was intimately connected with the society and events of the times. By birth and marriage she was related to the first families of New York…She was a woman of beauty, charm wit and intelligence. In her own home, at her father’s, at her father-in-law’s there was scarcely any famous man she did not meet: George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, General Knox, John Jay, Governor Morris…
In her short span of 47 years, Elizabeth Bayley Seton was a society belle and matron, a wife, a mother (five children), and a religious foundress. She was a good Protestant and, following her husband’s death while they were travelling in Italy, she became an exceptionally holy Roman Catholic. Her supreme characteristics were a deep capacity for friendship, which stemmed from her warm, emotional and affectionate nature; a profound love of the Blessed Sacrament, and an intense grasp of the concept of eternity. Joseph I. Dirvin, C.M., Mrs. Seton — Foundress of the American Sisters of Charity, 1962
Soon after Elizabeth Seton’s son William joined the Navy in 1818, she sent him the following:
“My soul’s darling—You go, so adieu once more. With how much more courage I say it now than in 1815. You must fill a station and take a part in our life of trial, and all your own Mother can beg is that you keep well with your Good Pilot and, as says old Burns, the correspondence fixed with heaven will be your noble anchor. To go when you can to the sacraments as a child to his Father will be a main point for that, and the next best is to look to your Mother’s old rule of intentions, the comfort of my life.”
Elizabeth Ann Seton was canonized in 1975.
“The words of Jesus and His love are the only light and hope in the darkness of today….”
Our destination should be a definitive life with God — “the eternal Bethlehem,” as one saint put it.
And from our hearts we sing to her: Hail Holy Mother, you gave birth to the King, whose name is eternal; she who has conceived has at the same time the joy of motherhood and the glory of virginity. Fernandez, “In Conversation with God”
Artwork: El Greco (1541-1614)