January, 2014

The Essential Ingredient

The most trivial work, the least action when inspired by love, is often of greater merit than the most outstanding achievement. It is not on their face value that God judges our deeds even when they bear the stamp of apparent holiness, but solely on the measure of love we put into them. . . And there is no one who can object that he is incapable of even this much, for such love is within the reach of all men.
St. Therese of Lisieux

I am not sure exactly what heaven will be like, but I do know that when we die and it comes time for God to judge us, He will not ask, “How many good things have you done in your life?” He will ask, “How much love did you put into what you did?”
Bl. Teresa of Calcutta

All of this is in addition to our constant work of friendship ministry with the poor, which includes taking people to church, meeting with them in their homes, delivering food, meeting unique needs, and supporting new mothers. All of these works are ineffectual without love. When anything in our life becomes more important than love, it has become more important than God. Putting love first seems simple, and it is simple. The difficult thing is to not let it become complicated (Ecclus. 7:29). Simplicity requires courage.

Easter 2006

Papal Zingers

This is a list of the top zingers from Evangelii Gaudium.  The letter is not really a manifesto, but it is full of burning ideas.  In the spirit of Internet lists, here are the sensational points!

1.  Be a missionary, or die a slow suicide

If we want to advance in the spiritual life, then, we must constantly be missionaries. The work of evangelization enriches the mind and the heart; it opens up spiritual horizons; it makes us more and more sensitive to the workings of the Holy Spirit, and it takes us beyond our limited spiritual constructs. A committed missionary knows the joy of being a spring which spills over and refreshes others. Only the person who feels happiness in seeking the good of others, in desiring their happiness, can be a missionary. This openness of the heart is a source of joy, since “it is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35). We do not live better when we flee, hide, refuse to share, stop giving and lock ourselves up in own comforts. Such a life is nothing less than slow suicide. EG 272

Excerpts about Scrupulosity

St. Catherine of Siena is a Doctor of the Church, and her largest work is “The Dialogues”.  The work is written as a dialogue between her and God.  This is what God said in the dialogue:

“I do not wish defects to be considered in particular, but in general, so that the mind may not be contaminated by the remembrance of particular and hideous sins.  But, as I said, I do not wish the soul to consider her sins, either in general or in particular, without also remembering the Blood and the broadness of My mercy, for fear that otherwise she should be brought to confusion.  And together with confusion would come the Devil, who has caused it, under color of contrition and displeasure of sin, and so she would arrive at eternal damnation, not only on account of her confusion, but also through the despair which would come to her, because she did not seize the arm of My mercy.  This is one of the subtle devices with which the Devil deludes My servants, and, in order to escape from his deceit, and to be pleasing to Me, you musty enlarge your hearts and affections in My boundless mercy, with true humility.  Thou knowest that the pride of the Devil cannot resist the humble mind, nor can any confusion of spirit be greater than the broadness of My good mercy, if the soul will only truly hope therein.”

The Scrupulosity Problem

Here is a series of videos describing a serious religious problem.