Monday, November 7, 2011

Fr. Ego vs. Fr. Real--comment

 I copied the following comment because it sums up the predicament priests like 'Fr Ego' pose for the good clergy and parishioners and bishops out there.  The reader Dionysus said it well...

Dionysus said...

...My questions are: What happens to the parish community after the "celebrity priest" leaves it because of reassignment or he is off to bigger and better things? Will the people who were drawn to the parish because of the "celebrity priest" leave the community and try to find another good weekend show elsewhere? Will the people who do remain be burdened with debt because the "celebrity priest" got people to agree to some special building project(I like to call it the "file builder" in the Bishop's office)?

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Fr. Ego vs. Fr. Real

Here's a juxtaposition for you

I read a news article today about a priest who is 'revitalizing' an inner city parish.
It was all about the priest.  He is packing them in, numbers are up, baskets are full, and the best part...
The people love him.  They adore him.  You know the drill--the smooth talking schmoozer preaching feel good pop spiritual psychology (i know 'cause i did it).
The people adore him.  Throughout the story the priest's name was mentioned a bunch of times.
But guess whose name was missing?

Not once was the name Jesus Christ mentioned.
They even mentioned the names of Hollywood celebrities who he has acquainted. That sure makes me want to go to church there.  If he knew a Hollywood star then he must really be the cat's meow (actually I am a dog person).

The name of Jesus Christ isn't mentioned once.  Not even in a quote from the priest.  Remember that name?  Jesus.  You know, the name that makes demons flee.   shhhhh don't say it you might ruin a good thing.

Now, here's the juxtaposition--don't give up hope yet---
While the name of Christ was not mentioned in the article about a Roman Catholic priest--I hear of another new pastor (this is not in the newspapers because it isn't 'popular') who has begun perpetual adoration at his parish.  
Good show.  He lives his pastorate with Eucharistic Adoration not a media blitz.

pray for our priests.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Worth Taking a Look...Strong Words From Vatican Exorcist

Read this "Exorcist laments apathy...."

These are some strong words for everyone--clergy included.

Exorcist Interview

Replay--Satan's Pings

As a blogger I am aware of the 'statistics' page.
There are a few very popular blog posts that continue to get 'hit'.  

I decided to revisit one--Satan's Pings (feb 2011)

Tissot--Jesus Tempted in the Desert

Satan pings you. Rarely is it a flat out onslaught of evil but an insipid encircling that takes jabs at you throughout the day.

The objectives of pinging are simultaneously simple and interconnected.  They are temptation, distraction, frustration, anxiety and fear.
The goal of pinging is also simple--keep the soul distracted, frustrated, anxious, or afraid just enough that it forgets God or worse--consciously turns from God.
The origins of the daily pinging we endure are found in the seven deadly sins--sins that play on human nature;
wrath, greed, pride, sloth, envy, gluttony, and lust.
And of course the ultimate origin of these is found in satan.

But the church doesn't talk about these anymore.  Why?  Is it because sin has been explained and rationalized as an excused human reaction to stress or, even worse, has sin been intellectualized to non existence?  On the rare occasion when I hear the mention of sin in a homily--the connection is never made to the presence of evil and the existence of satan. (no disrepect meant to the clergy, just an observation from the pew)  Perhaps it isn't preached because it isn't a popular product and if the church lives a philosophy of consumerism and the customers aren't buying it--well it's dropped from the product line. Satan is laughing.

But the movie theatres are full when a movie like The Rite comes out, why?  Because it plays (sometimes in a mixed up way) on that deep inherent knowledge of the human experience--- there is a battle for the soul.
Yes, the soul is created for God.  And that is the whole reason satan keeps pinging.
He wants to keep you from God.

People in the work place, and (hang on here) even in the church, are affected by the seven deadly sins everyday.
You can't tell me that greed and pride haven't replaced God.  Actually greed and pride may be two of the sins that receive the most rationalization.  After all, financial and social injustices are just the way of the world.  And, in the world today any lack of pride is interpreted as a weakness.
Use who you can to get what you want--what a bunch of crap from the father of lies.

You can't deny that lust and gluttony have control over people's lives and are excused more readily than ever.  Go ahead and feel what you want and even act on it--God will always forgive you.  Yes we believe He will--but what happens when you stop even asking for forgiveness?  Follow a sin and it becomes your
How about wrath and envy--who hasn't been on both sides of those?   And, in the time it took you to read this another soul fell victim to sloth or laziness--the spiritual quest is just too tiring and excuses are a dime dozen.

I used to think that when I was aware of being pinged it was a little easier to take.  But sometimes a ping does more than just distract or frustrate or play on a fear or anxiety.  Sometimes a ping can cut right to the heart and make the soul feel completely helpless and useless maybe even feel like God abandoned you.

Then again I am reminded of Jesus being tempted in the desert and then later on the Cross--satan didn't want what was coming so he was throwing everything he had at Christ.

If you are pinged today--look to the victory that resides only in and through Christ.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Good Sermon

At seven in the morning on The Feast of All Saints at Holy Mass--
I heard a good sermon.
From an older established pastor who I knew from years back.

He didn't have to prepare--come on it's seven in the morning.  People are shuffling in and mixing with the usual morning Mass crowd (maybe even taking their pew).
He didn't have to prepare--but he did and I knew it.

He spoke of the Church Militant and the Church Triumphant--descriptors that were never taught to my generation.
He spoke about how we need to be 'militant' in pursuit of our faith--how we need to do the work and be aware that satan is always thwarting God's love and God's way.
He spoke about how we are connected to those who were once the 'militant' and are now 'triumphant'

It was a good All Saints homily.
No agenda except inspiring people to go a little harder in their pursuit of holiness--you know--like a saint!