Please pray for me and my brother priests!

Sunday, July 1, 2007

The Suffering of Christ

I apologize for a lack of blogging lately! I have been up to my ears in work, and traveling quite a bit.

This morning, I came across this passage from Cardinal Ratzinger's "Via Crucis" meditations from 2005 while reading the wonderful blog Rorate Caeli . I was struck by the Cardinal's words and thought they related nicely to todays Gospel. In the Gospel (Luke 9: 51-62) we see Christ calling, and those to whom He calls delaying their response. The choose the "I" over His call, and consequently abandon their vocations. How often do we do this? How often do we put God's will on hold to follow our own plan of life? How often do we draw up our own "map to heaven" instead of following the path blazed by Christ on His cross? Far too often I fear. We are afraid to follow Christ, afraid of the cost of discipleship, all the while ignoring the simple fact that all He calls us to is friendship with God the Father, a true holiness that leads to divine happiness.

Hope, however, is not lost! We can always approach Him in the confessional and ask Him to once again heal our soul, damaged only by our self-afflicted wounds of sin. In this sacrament, as in all the sacraments, He is continually transforming us, making us more like Him, so that what the Father sees and loves in us becomes nothing other than what the Father sees and loves in Christ. If have any hope of saying "yes" to the gift of Heaven, we must begin that "yes" to God now. We must decrease, so that in us Christ may increase. We must be transformed in Christ, but first we must acknowledge our need for transformation, and submit to that transformation through the means He has established: The Church.

Questions and comments are welcomed. Enjoy the reflection by Cardinal Ratzinger, and God love you!

Father V.
************




Calix benedictionis, cui benedicimus, nonne communicatio sanguinis Christi
est? et panis, quem frangimus, nonne participatio corporis Domini est?
(Offertory for the Feast of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus
Christ)


Should we not also think of how much Christ suffers in his own Church? How often is the holy sacrament of his Presence abused, how often must he enter empty and evil hearts! How often do we celebrate only ourselves, without even realizing that he is there! How often is his Word twisted and misused! What little faith is present behind so many theories, so many empty words! How much filth there is in the Church, and even among those who, in the priesthood, ought to belong entirely to him! How much pride, how much self-complacency! What little respect we pay to the Sacrament of Reconciliation, where he waits for us, ready to raise us up whenever we fall!

All this is present in his Passion. His betrayal by his disciples, their unworthy reception of his Body and Blood, is certainly the greatest suffering endured by the Redeemer; it pierces his heart. We can only call to him from the depths of our hearts:

Kyrie eleison – Lord, save us.


Cardinal Ratzinger
Via Crucis at the Colosseum
March 25, 2005

1 comment:

Gibbons J. Cooney said...

Preach it, Fr. V!

"How often do we put God's will on hold to follow our own plan of life? How often do we draw up our own "map to heaven" instead of following the path blazed by Christ on His cross? Far too often I fear."

All too often on my part!

God Bless you, Father!

Your Son in Christ,

Gibbons in SF