November 9, 2018
The Dedication of the Lateran Basilica
Dear Family of Mary!
“…That is why I call you, apostles of my love: you, strive to look to the very depth in human hearts and there you are certain to find the little hidden treasure. To look in this way is mercy from the Heavenly Father. To seek the good even where there is the greatest evil-to strive to comprehend each other and not to judge-that is what my Son is asking of you. And I, as a mother, am calling you to listen to Him….” (November 2, 2018)
To close out our week, I want to share a response to Our Lady’s message and Fr. Joseph Jacobson’s homily that I received from our shipmate, Reuben. He brings up a good point. What about the Pharisees and the Scribes? They don’t seem likely characters to want mercy from Jesus. And Jesus often has contentious encounters with them in the Gospels. Here are Reuben’s thoughts:
This homily is beautiful. (Fr. Jacobson’s homily)
I have recently been thinking about all the many conversations Jesus has with the Pharisees in which the Pharisees are trying to catch him out. It is easy to read some of these passages as though Jesus is entering into the same chess-game that they are in, but is just cleverer than them, and so manages to check-mate them every time (e.g. “render unto Caesar”).
It is easy to read the Person of Jesus as though he were like the rest of us, who so often – if not always, in some way – “use” truth to fulfill our own agendas. Christ is not like us in sin. He has no sinful inclination to “get the last word in” or prove himself right. He is the deepest truth in his very person, so cannot speak anything but the truth. And the true is always good and beautiful, because that which is real is really made to be good and beautiful out of love.
Jesus is the deep truth that all is made for love, so his words of truth are always loving. They are always inviting the Pharisees – and indeed all of us – to see that which is untrue/evil/ugly in ourselves, so as to repent of it and turn to him who can change us. Christ’s truth is a sword, for sure, but one which wishes only to cut away that which is dead and unworthy in his beloved brothers and sisters born for greatness.
This is that mercy our Lady is speaking about. It is a truth which is always looking for the seed of love in the other person. Christ, of course, finds it easy, and we, of course, don’t. In our case, we too often look for what isn’t loving and seek to speak about that first. We do need to speak about evil, of course, but we should start out by naming our own rather than someone else’s. This is why we need confession: because in naming our own lack of love, and lack of truth, and in gaining God’s love and truth from the very act of so doing, we learn to know that God’s greatest attribute truly is mercy, and we learn to look for ways of inviting people to it with the same tender, un-condemning touch as has been given to us.
We don’t look to wag our fingers at our fellow sinners, because we know that’s what they truly are: our “fellows” in the same need of forgiveness as we always are. In the Gospel of Mark, there is a reference to people being “amazed” simply by Christ’s presence. I hazard to imagine that is because his eyes of complete truthfulness are eyes of complete of love, and as such, they trouble and delight us all in great measure! We are delighted, because we all want to be forgiven, and we are troubled, because we so often forget how infinite is our need for forgiveness…….
Thank you, Reuben. Well said. We are delighted and troubled when we gaze into Jesus’ eyes, but the trouble leaves in a flash, when we see how very much we are loved. May we always gaze into those eyes of love, the eyes of Jesus, waiting to look into the depths of our hearts.
Here are three prayers to the Sacred Heart. They are perfect for this Friday!
O most holy Heart of Jesus, fountain of every blessing,
I adore you, I love you and will a lively sorrow for my sins.
I offer you this poor heart of mine.
Make me humble, patient, pure, and wholly obedient to your will.
Grant, good Jesus, that I may live in you and for you.
Protect me in the midst of danger; comfort me in my afflictions;
give me health of body, assistance in my temporal needs,
your blessings on all that I do, and the grace of a holy death.
Within your heart I place my every care.
In every need let me come to you with humble trust saying,
Heart of Jesus, help me.
Most Sacred, most loving Heart of Jesus,
You are concealed in the Holy Eucharist,
And You beat for us still.
Now, as then, You say: “With desire I have desired.”
I worship You with all my best love and awe,
With fervent affection,
With my most subdued, most resolved will.
For a while You take up Your abode within me.
O make my heart beat with Your Heart!
Purify it of all that is earthly,
All that is proud and sensual,
All that is hard and cruel,
Of all perversity,
Of all disorder,
Of all deadness.
So fill it with You,
That neither the events of the day,
Nor the circumstances of the time,
May have the power to ruffle it;
But that in Your love and Your fear,
It may have peace. (Blessed John Henry Newman)
Hail, Sacred Heart of Jesus, living and strengthening source of eternal life, infinite treasury of the divinity, burning furnace of divine love! You are my refuge and my sanctuary. My loving Savior, consume my heart in that burning fire with which Your own is inflamed. Pour into my soul those graces which flow from Your love. Let my heart be so united with Yours that our wills may be one, and my will in all things conformed with Yours. May Your Will be the guide and rule of my desires and of my actions. Amen. (St. Gertrude)
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
(c)Mary TV 2018
PS. This weekend we remember the end of World War I – 100 years ago. We remember the brave soldiers who lost their lives, and their families who bore the sorrow of their loss down the years. We beg Our Lady, Queen of Peace, to Triumph in this world of woes and bring us peace. Amen