Humiliation is good for you

Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went toward the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first.  He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. Then the disciples returned to their homes. John 20:3-10

I had been pondering lately why Jesus would have chosen Peter to lead the church when Peter had denied Him. From my human perspective it seemed to make more sense to me that God would choose the one who more fully surrendered, the one who stood at the cross, the Evangelist John. But the other day, I finally understood. I will do my best to explain.

John the Evangelist had the gift of prophecy. I will veer off a little bit here to talk about prophecy and the responsibility of it and the dangers of it. The prophet is to always call people back to God and to repentance. The prophet sees things that others don’t see, this is the gift, to see with more clear vision. But it’s important to understand that Satan can come in to try to twist this gift. If the prophet isn’t firmly aligned with the will of God, if he isn’t to point of purification the Lord works upon us, then the prophet can easily slide into pride and judgment, thinking he is better than another.

If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 1 Corinthians 12:2

And it was here that I saw the wisdom in Jesus’ choice. Of course it seems silly for me to question the wisdom of God. But being the limited human I am happy God dealt with me gently.

Jesus chose the one who got humiliated to lead. It was the humiliation of Peter that made him a great leader. He would always remember it. It enabled him to hear correction from Paul. Peter’s humiliation led to true humility. And for John, having to be obedient to Peter and defer to him as He did at the tomb, it keeps the gift of prophecy from becoming prideful. Obedience and humility are the key to true charity.

If we cannot love the person standing right in front of us and want well for them, then we have all missed the mark. Because in these dark times we are all living in, there is one thing I am certain of, we will all be humbled.

Being right has become more important than being loving in our society. This is why true prophecy shows the way to love.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Can you go through that list above and honestly say that you are living that? Even when you are right and someone else is wrong? Are you trying to force your will upon another? God doesn’t force or coerce. God invites. God’s love is complete and it looks like the cross.

Sometimes I wonder if the world is under a spell. We have all become so blinded the narrow path of true love seems scarcely seen.

The devil, diabolus, is the divider. He is running rampant.

I will close leaving you with a curse breaking prayer. A prayer to protect you and hopefully help you to love others. I did not write it. I cannot remember now where I came across it. I did adapt it some, but my prayer is that if we are under a spell, God can break the chains.

A Curse Breaking Prayer

I proclaim that “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: ‘Cursed is everyone who hung on a tree’” .(Galatians 3:13)

Having forgiven as I am forgiven and repented of my sins, in the Most Holy Name of Jesus, I pray for the blessing from the fullness of his cross, death, blood, and sacrifice, his resurrection, life and empty tomb, his authority, rule and dominion upon me and my family.

I ask the Most Sovereign Queen of Angels and Mother of God, Mary Immaculate, to intercede on our behalf.

In the Most Holy Name of Jesus I ask judgment to be brought from His throne against every foul power, principality, witchcraft, black art, curse, hex, spell, portal, astral projection, and pharmakeia.  I plead Christ’s blood over me and my family against all curses that have been raised against us – through media, technology or in person – anything written, spoken or unspoken, or transferred to us and all curses of death, murder, sexual curses, curses of never, discord and sickness, all curses on my marriage (if married), health or finances.  

I bring the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, his blood shed upon the cross, against all blood sacrifices and rituals and their every claim against me or my family.

I bring Jesus Christ, the Son of God, sacrificed for me, against all ritual sacrifices and their every claim against me or my family.

I bring the dedication of Jesus Christ for me in death upon the cross against all ritual dedications.

In the name, and by the blood of Jesus Christ, I break the power and hold of every curse that has come to me through ritual or ritual sacrifice.

In the name and by the blood of Jesus Christ, I break the power and hold of every curse that has come to me or my family through transfer by another human being. 

In the name and by the blood of Jesus Christ, I break the power and hold of every curse that has come to me or my family through words spoken.

In the name and by the blood of Jesus Christ, I break the power and hold of every curse that has come to me or my family through occult practices.

In the Most Holy name of Jesus, I declare every legal hold and every legal ground of the enemy broken, disarmed, and destroyed.  Satan has no hold over me or my family now through curses or occult practices, through sacrifices or ritual of any kind.  Through the blood of Jesus Christ, I am free.  Thank you Jesus, for setting me and my family free.  I order these curses and claims utterly disarmed and dismantled now, through the power of the blood of Jesus Christ and His Most Holy Name.

In the Most Holy Name of Jesus, I command all demonic spirits that have gained access to me or my family through curses and rituals cut off and banished from me and my household, in the mighty name of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus I ask you to send your holy angels now to completely disarm all curses and black arts from me and my family, disarm their every device and render them destroyed.  I ask your angels to remove all foul spirits involved in these curses and black arts and bind them to your feet for judgment.

I now ask for the prayer of the communion of Saints to surround me. I ask for the mantle of protection of Our Most Holy Mother. I ask for the heavenly blessing the Father has given to me and my family in Christ Jesus. I claim those blessings right here in place of all cursing, by the power and authority of Our Lord Jesus Christ. May these things be accomplished in the mighty and Most Holy Name of Jesus. I give honor, thanks and praise, to the 2nd person of the Blessed Trinity who became the Incarnate Lord Jesus Christ of Nazareth to destroy the works of the devil and save me from my sins. May the Holy Spirit dwell with in me.

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Peace be with all of you as we navigate these tough times.

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Facing the Darkness

Photo by Bridget Touhey

 to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’ Acts 26:18

It seems that everyone I speak to these days is experiencing anxiety and fear. Even people of great faith have come to me, the fear can be so overwhelming. I have experienced it myself. One glance at the headlines and the thoughts start spinning through your head.

I am not here to tell you that bad things won’t happen. In fact, I am quite certain they will. I am here to tell you that God is still good. These things we are afraid of, we cannot control them, but God, He is in control.

And so, what are we to do when we have trouble trusting and letting go of the fear? We are to take the fear to Jesus and let Him walk us through it.

What do I mean by this? I mean go to your biggest fear, with God, and have Him walk you through it as if it has actually already happened. Instead of hiding from your fear, stare directly at it, with God, and have Him hold you as you face it together. Use your imaginative prayer to do this and let God lead you where He will.

You see, we tend to get stuck in our fear, or even try to fight against it. We try to hide it. We do all kinds of things with fear, except actually facing it. What if the worst thing you can think of actually happens? Stare at this serpent on the staff.

When you stare at the fear God can reveal to you where he wants to heal you. He can reveal to you how to radically trust him.

What is your biggest fear of the future? Is it being forced to do something against your will? Is it global collapse? Is it just simply that you worry your children will never come back to faith? Is it that people won’t love you?

Take it to God as if it has already happened. Stare at it. Don’t run away from it. Don’t let the fear eat you alive.

If you do this, the infinitely good God will show you how big His hand actually is. He will not show you the future, but He will speak to your heart, and He will show you how light overcomes darkness. He will show you a way that you don’t see.

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. John 1:5

You see, there is one thing I have noticed, and that is, when something I have feared actually happens, it never actually plays out in the way I had worried about, and always in hindsight, I could see God’s hand. The fear and anxiety I had prior, dissipate as I can clearly see how I was walked through the fear.

So, by taking the fear that plays over and over in our heads to him first, and having Him walk us through it, we begin to see that we are always, always, his little children. And though a Father does discipline, He does not harm.

For once you were darkness, but now in the Lord you are light. Live as children of light— Ephesians 5:8

Children of the Light understand that what God allows to come their way is for their good, for their purification, for true love to shine in the world. And your perspective begins to change.

I was actually afraid of getting COVID, and that fear was sometimes overwhelming because of my caring for my elderly parents. Then I got COVID, and I saw the hand of God’s protection all the way through it. From the fact that my parents did not contract it, to the fact that my husband organized a plan to care for my parents while I was in quarantine. I got much needed rest and my husband was raised up by God to a higher level. I came to realize that even though the media throws around fear and accuses you, God is the author of all life. He decides when we stay and when we go. There is so much relief in letting God be God.

I was afraid of one of my parents dying, and then my dad did die, and I saw the hand of God all the way through it. And I saw how good God is. In fact, God answered everything that I had asked for in that process.

So the effort becomes to realize this beforehand – To trust that what has always been true will always be true – That God does not abandon his people and we can trust Him.

In fact, it is us who usually abandon Him. Not the reverse. And what He is asking is that we don’t leave Him the way that He promised He will never leave us.

Know that I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” Genesis 28:15

God is looking for souls in this time through whom His promises are made true. He is looking for the souls who don’t run from the cross, but those who embrace it with Him. It is here that we will see the power and the glory of God.

I believe, though we are entering into darkness as a society, that we are about to see an abundance of miracles.

So we have the prophetic message more fully confirmed. You will do well to be attentive to this as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. 2 Peter 1:19

The call for all of us is to be the light of Christ that shines in the darkness. Take your biggest struggle to Him and let him show you what He can do with it. Remember The Blessed Virgin as your guidepost during this time and pray to trust like she did.

Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Luke 12:32

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 40 Comments

Rejoice in Suffering

My beloved child, delight of my Heart, your words are dearer and more pleasing to me than the angelic chorus. All the treasures of My Heart are open to you. Take from this Heart all that you need for yourself and for the whole world. For the sake of your love, I withhold the just chastisements, which mankind has deserved. A single act of pure love pleases me more than a thousand imperfect prayers. One of your sighs of love atones for many offenses with which the godless overwhelm Me. The smallest act of virtue has unlimited value in my eyes because of your great love for Me. In a soul that lives on My love alone, I reign as in heaven. I watch over it day and night. In it I find My happiness; My ear is attentive to each request of its heart; often I anticipate its requests. O child, especially beloved by Me, apple of my eye, rest a moment near My Heart and taste of the love in which you will delight for all eternity. – (Jesus to Faustina Diary 1489 Conversation of the Merciful God with a Perfect Soul)

The dreary routine has set in after the funeral of my father. The funeral itself was beautiful. It was a family reunion. The exhaustion of it was overwhelming. Then came the Sunday after all the people had left and it was just me and mom. My kids have gone back to school, my husband is back to work. I do have help from amazing caregivers, but it’s the moments alone at night with mom that are the hardest.

Right now I live in some version of 50 first dates or Ground Hog Day. Mom’s memory is rapidly declining. She gets agitated in the evening and I spend the majority of the time trying to convince her to stay with me rather than going where ever it is she thinks she has to go. Last week it was a wedding, yesterday a college reunion, the glimmers of the outgoing social butterfly my mom once was come through in all the confabulation of her thoughts.

But then comes the remembering. She asks me if “my Mike” is gone. She calls him her “main man” and she realizes he is dead, and the sobbing is body shaking sobbing. I climb into bed with her. I hold her as she asks me why I didn’t tell her (which I did), why I didn’t take her to the funeral (which I did). I lay there with her and we cry. It’s all I can do, hold her and cry with her.

As I laid there in bed with her the other night, I felt the Lord whisper, “there’s more grace in this one act of holding your mother than in anything else you have ever done.”

I knew that all the writings I have written, all the classes I have taught, all the retreats I have put on, paled in comparison to the minutes I laid in bed and held my mother. I was not able to fix any of what was happening, I was just in the suffering with her. And though I have been known to complain about what I am living right now, in that moment I welcomed the suffering and asked God to let it continue because grace was flowing like a river.

As I climbed into my own bed that evening I picked up the Diary of Saint Faustina and I read the above passage. I read how he withheld chastisement from us because of her love. And I understood it.

I came to realize that God’s view of suffering is vastly different from our own. The only suffering for God is our sin; it’s that we love something more than Him. And God, who is love, knows that when we love something more than Him, we are actually turning from love and we become dark in our hearts. It’s why acts of pure love are so filled with grace, because heaven truly resides within them. It’s why the world is in so much pain because we cling to our comforts, our health, our science, our money, other people, more than we cling to him. And in doing this we actually miss out on how to truly love other people.

I scan the headlines these days, but try not to get sucked into them. The world tries to give you an idol and tell you it’s love. But the truth is nothing the world offers can even come close to the love that the God of creation offers. He has been asking us to repent, to stop trusting the ways of the world more than we trust him. It’s why he told Faustina to paint, “Jesus I trust in you.”

I can see the storm we are in and the trajectory we are on. We actually deserve chastisement. We as a society have turned to sin and darkened hearts, but as I read the above passage from Saint Faustina’s diary, I realize how much just one soul who lives in the love and the will of God can do for the rest of mankind because of the God of love dwelling within them. I want to be one of those souls. I hope you do too.

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corithians 13:8-13

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , , , , | 28 Comments

The Silence

“We must go a three days’ journey into the wilderness and sacrifice to the Lord our God as He commands us.” Exodus 8:27

I write in my journal as if the Lord is speaking to me. If the church were to declare what I have written is wrong, the church is correct and I am wrong.

Beloved Lily of the Father,

All of Salvation History from beginning to end is held within the Triduum, the 3 days.

My Mother marks the trajectory. Pay attention to her.

All things are being made transparent to those who KNOW me. If you know me, you know the Father and the Spirit dwells within you.

Have no fear or anxiety about the future. I AM already there. I hold you in the palm of My Hand.

The Smoke of Satan has entered the church.

They have made a God of science, it will reap destruction. Like those who worshipped Baal saw that the God of Israel is a consuming fire, so too will you witness this in these days.

You shall have no other Gods besides me.

Heaven and earth will shake.

Then will come the silence.

All will see who they are.

You will see what you did to me, what you did to my body on the cross.

The more communion you have received in a state of grace the more grace you will have to endure this sight. The sight of my broken body. You will see what you did to me, you did to yourself, you did to others. The shock of it will be immeasurable. It will be your Garden of Gethsemane, seeing what I saw. Held within the Triduum.

You must turn to my mercy at that hour, for the hour justice will come swiftly for those who reject my mercy.

The earth will tremble, fire will fall.

All will be dark for 3 days. If it were any longer you couldn’t bear it.

Prepare your heart to be a sanctuary, a refuge.

I love you and you are mine.

Revelation 8:1-5

Your Divine Spouse

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , | 14 Comments

The Greener Muscle

Me and my brother at my dad’s funeral

You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. James 2:24

Video link of my dad’s funeral Mass.

This eulogy was written and given by my brother, Michael Green, Jr at my dad’s funeral.

Michael Kevin Green

(September 7, 1938 – July 16, 2021)

Eulogy

“Good afternoon, Ladies and Gentlemen, and welcome to the Lion’s Den.” If you were around DCs Archbishop Carroll High School in the 70s and 80s, you would be familiar with that iconic opening line at the school’s football games. Being the football P.A. announcer was one of many roles my father served in during his 33 years at the school, which has the Lion as its mascot.

Now, I won’t pretend that there is anything too profound in a comment from a high school sporting event, but I think it is useful to parse that sentence a bit. It includes a friendly salutation – “Good afternoon,” and a greeting which respects the dignity of the audience members – “ladies and gentlemen.” The latter part, however, with references to the Lion’s Den and the Fighting Lions, hints toward the competition that was about to ensue – this was, after all, a football game, which features the battle of wills and the defending of boundaries.

In a way, that combination frames a challenge that every man seeking virtue must confront. How do I strike the right balance between being kind, respectful, and thoughtful of others, with the need for fortitude and a willingness to fight, when necessary, to defend boundaries, especially ones that protect what is true, good and beautiful?

In facing this challenge, my father had a certain indescribable strength – a particular combination of backbone, moral fiber, intensity, and conviction. For the remainder of my remarks today, and for lack of a better term, I will simply refer to this attribute as “The Greener Muscle.”

In its overdeveloped strength, the Greener Muscle, when deployed in the context of daily family life, could sometimes bring humorous results. In one frequently told family story from the early days of my parent’s marriage, dad was able to fix a leak in a pipe under the kitchen sink. With problem solved, he proudly showed my mother his handiwork…before then deciding the pipe required just one more turn of the wrench… to make sure it was fully fixed. With that extra turn, Dad stripped the pipe, sending an explosion of water all over the kitchen, and necessitating a call to the plumber.

On another occasion, when I was 15, I requested dad’s assistance just prior to my first varsity football game. The team tradition was for all players to wear black cleats in games. Originally unaware of this, I had purchased white cleats, but was instructed by our coach to make sure they were black by the time of the first game. As a procrastinating teenager, I waited until the day before the game to alert my dad to this problem. Not to worry, as the next day, my cleats were blacker and shinier than those of any player on the field…so much so that I noticed some of the black coloring rubbing off on the uniforms of other players as we unpiled after a tackle. It seems that Dad had painted the shoes, not with black shoe polish, but with Deluxe Black Tree Wound Sealer and Grafting Compound.

The Greener Muscle could also reveal a sort of manly force of will that breaks down complexity  and replaces it with simplicity. This could sometimes be awe inspiring for young men being coached or mentored. Here, I’ll repeat a story told at my Father’s retirement party by one of his former baseball players. It seems the team had been struggling with its hitting and, at batting practice one day, many of the players were speculating about the type of bat it would  be best to use…a lighter bat? a heavier bat? a thick handle or thin handle?…At that point, Coach Green called for the end of such discussion, grabbed the nearest bat, stepped up to the plate himself and motioned for the pitcher to throw…and sent a whistling line drive up the middle…he then grabbed a different bat and delivered another scorching line drive on the next pitch…this sequence continued on through 7 or 8 different bats, with the same result each time. He concluded this demonstration with the comment “Gentlemen, it’s not the bat that matters, it’s the man holding it.” The team’s batting struggles ended immediately.

Sports stories such as these are great conversation pieces, but it is important to note that the Greener Muscle did extend far beyond sports to more important matters, such as chivalry and moral boundaries. In my life, I’ve never had to spend even ten seconds worrying about my father’s loyalty and fidelity to my mother. As an illustration, there was an occasion when my parents, having secured a babysitter for us children, attended a party in our neighborhood. Well, it was the 70s, and at the party, a proposal was made to play a particular game. Without going into detail, let’s just say that the game was risqué and inappropriate for married couples. Upon learning of what had been proposed, my father immediately called across the room to my mother “We’re not playing that game, Bunk!,” and the two of them soon departed. I was not there, but I am sure you could have heard a pin drop in the room. My dad did not give a hoot about being popular or whether anyone was comfortable or not. There was a moral boundary that wasn’t going to be crossed on his watch, even if he was the only person in the room who was going to take that stand. The authentic masculinity displayed here has always stuck with me.

Happily, the knowledge that marriage and family were always going to come first with our dad gave the rest of the family a strong sense of security, and a platform for the joy of family life. It was in this context that the Greener Muscle could be tender, playful, and loving. For Dad, celebrating, even after a big sports victory, did not mean hitting the bars with the boys. It meant rounding up the family and heading to Ledo’s Pizza…it meant picnics and boat trips in Annapolis after he had umpired a Navy baseball game…it meant a week at the beach in June,  when school had just let out, when rates were a little cheaper, and when water temperatures provided for, as he liked to say, a “cooling dip”…it meant anniversary  trips to Williamsburg, site of their honeymoon in 1962, with my mom…it meant Thanksgiving dinners with the Carr family…it meant family reunions at the Cammack Farm…it meant gracious and joyful get togethers with the O’Donoghues, Ferrises, Skinners, and Blums on the occasions of our weddings…as the years went on, it meant trips to Notre Dame, Wrigley Field, and Fenway Park…and family happy hours at Bethany Beach, often joined by the Ferrises…throughout all of these happy memories, it was always a sign of my dad’s love and affection if he had a nickname for you…there would be way too many to mention here, so I’ll just stick with the ones in the immediate household…Bunkie, Tea, Jen Bird, Sus, and Frot… 

Ultimately, the Greener Muscle, which by its nature was never going to come up short, attained the highest form of charity…that of sacrificial love. Catholic school tuition was paid, even while was providing for a family of six in affluent Montgomery County, MD on a very modest teacher’s salary. To press the point further, I’ll ask you to indulge me in one more  sports reference. My father coached the Carroll baseball team to the Catholic League Title in 1973. He was 35 years old – still a very young man. He could have continued coaching at that level for another two decades or more. If he had, there may have been more league championships, and possibly additional notoriety for my father as “local legend” of sorts in the coaching ranks. But, he didn’t go that route. Instead, he stepped down from the Varsity high school level. The reason? To be more available for his children. His coaching acumen was instead used to train and guide Elizabeth in track and cross country, to coach Jenny, and later Susan, in basketball, and me in CYO Baseball. We had a father who was very present and engaged in our lives, playing a critical role in our formation. So, while he did not get his name in the local sports pages as often as he could have, his choices brought abundant blessings:

4 children in faithful Catholic marriages, 13 grandchildren, and 6 great grandchildren (with another on the way!)

I will pause here and acknowledge that my father was human, and was not perfect. He could be stubborn, at times anxious and pessimistic, and, well, hard on liberals…As Catholics, we are not supposed to presume salvation or immediately canonize the deceased, so I will ask everyone here to continue praying for the repose of my father’s soul.

With that said, I’ll just offer my own limited, temporal perspective. It’s been said that the surest way to get yourself to heaven is to take some else by the hand and lead them there. In his life, this is what my father did for my mother, my sisters and I, and likely for countless other extended family members, friends, colleagues, and students. He has indeed struck a wonderful balance between kindness and courage. He has shown us the love of God the Father. It turns out that, amidst the all the strength and force of will, the underlying foundation of the Greener Muscle was a simple goodness, borne from solid formation in the Catholic faith.   

So, with a fond farewell, and on behalf of everyone here, I’ll say Thank You Dad for everything. We love you, and will only hope that our Greener Muscles can be half as strong as yours.

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , , | 20 Comments

The Way

Risen Christ appearing to the Blessed Virgin Mary – Jacques Stella 1640

Brothers and sisters: In Christ Jesus you who once were far off have become near by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, he who made both one and broke down the dividing wall of enmity, through his flesh, abolishing the law with its commandments and legal claims, that he might create in himself one new person in place of the two, thus establishing peace, and might reconcile both with God, in one body, through the cross, putting that enmity to death by it. He came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near, for through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. Ephesians 2:13-18

I have been thinking a lot about the path to spiritual maturity that the church fathers spoke of, the purgative, the illuminative, and the unitive way and reflecting on the above passage from Saint Paul.

This passage tells us that Jesus abolished enmity, something that was established as a curse in Genesis.

I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers;
he will strike your head, and you will strike his heel.” Genesis 3:15

You may remember if you have been following my blog I wrote a post about this enmity called, Holy Hatred.

But after reading the above passage from Saint Paul, it left me wondering about the enmity Jesus abolished. And it seems to me that we ultimately should end up in a place where we know no hatred. But it is a place we have to travel too, by passing through enmity. Passing through enmity is a walk to crucifixion where by your human will is nailed to the cross so God can divinize you. It is the unitive way.

Through the cross, putting enmity to death by it. Ephesians 2:16

The problem with our world though is we want to skip to not hating without going through the cross. Never having learned to hate sin and the devil we end up hating what is good, following a path of universalism, accepting all sin. The spiritually immature person who wants to love, ends up with a twisted sense of what love is floating in a universal cosmos of undefined nebulous chaos that actually invites destruction. One that says all paths of spirituality are equal and denies that Jesus is the Way.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6

The church fathers knew better. Would that we would only listen.

A soul that truly loves God must learn first to hate sin, hate the devil – which is where our enmity is placed, so that we can continue on the path to union. It is part of the process. And by this hatred we must think of hatred as an emphatic rejection of all things unGodly, which the devil is.

When one tries to skip that part, the part where we hate sin and the devil, the devil convinces you that you are your sin and that you cannot be separated from your sin. There are only two places this train of thought from the devil can take you. One is to a place of pride whereby we proclaim that God loves all, even our sin, and we defy what was revealed to us by God Himself about sin. We march in the streets telling God He is wrong and we tell those who disagree that they are the ones who are hateful, forcing acceptance of sin at all costs. The other place the devil takes you is to hatred of yourself. The enmity was placed on earth by God, it has to go somewhere. When we don’t know how to properly walk the path, it ends up eating us alive interiorly and the result is despair. It is the pendulum swing of pride and despair.

But the soul who is open to God and his revelation will first learn to hate properly. This soul will experience Holy Hatred and can separate who God made them to be from the sin that they have committed. This soul will have a realization, and illumination, that sin is evil, the devil is flinging temptation at them, and they will make an effort to stop. To hate, to reject, that which keeps them from loving God to the fullest. They will go to confession and they will receive the Eucharist in a state of grace. They will have enmity towards sin and the devil. Thus, Jesus and His Mother, crush the head of Satan who has been, from the beginning, trying to steal, kill and destroy that soul. This is part of the purgative way.

This experience will be a cross that they carry, rooting out sin after sin. Along the way it will hurt. Letting go of things we loved more than God, it is a suffering. Letting go of fear. Trusting that God has our best interests at heart, it takes an act of the will. It takes moving beyond the things that make us feel good.

There are two personifications of evil. One is the devil himself who rejected all that God made good. The other is Christ on the Cross, who was put there not of his own doing, but because of our evil. One is twisted and defiled, the other is actually beautiful. Every time we choose not to sin, we go to confession, we receive communion in a state of grace, we gravitate more towards the beauty of the cross and away from the darkness.

Since enmity was originally a curse, it wasn’t part of what actively God willed for us. But because of the free will of fallen angels, God took what they turned dark and brought into the world and He made it Holy. This is because God works all things for the good of those who love Him. When we properly order our holy hatred towards the powers and principalities that tempt us to fall, we journey on a path to the cross of letting go of our earthly desires, so that, in the end we can be filled with heavenly desire.

Along this journey we learn to hate the evil we commit, the devil who tempts us to it, and ultimately, hopefully, we ourselves get crucified, rooting out all evil from within us. This means then that love is the ultimate desire and we have moved to where we love Christ on the Cross more than we hate the devil. It isn’t enough to hate evil, we must love good. In the end the devil is God’s creation and we can see what could have been. True Love is a higher calling. Love really does overcome all, as long as the path towards it is properly understood. God can only lift up those who are willing to walk this Way.

Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

This is where resurrection happens. A soul becomes a Saint and enters the unitive way. It is here that love grows stronger than hatred. A soul is lifted to no knowledge of evil and loves the way that God loves. Here we desire the bloodied Christ on the Cross for ourselves and our own soul, more than we hate the devil because we have passed through and stared at that which separated us from God. We have stared at our own sin and we chose to leave it and to love. We totally embrace the cross. And God’s healing grace pours into us, repairing all that was done. It is why a crucifix should be hanging in every church. It shows us the path to true love that God works within our own soul. Having learned to hate properly, God can elevate us to a higher love. Our human will gets crucified and we get filled with the love of the Divine Will.

I had a moment in the chapel the other day where I had this realization. I was praying for my dad. I had all kinds of feelings. My dad’s suffering was so much, his care so hard. It was then that I thought Jesus felt all these things. He let me know he felt, anger, sorrow, despair, isolation, loneliness. He felt it all on the cross.

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Matthew 27:46

He sat in those feelings and faced them, all that he experienced in His human will. Because He was God, all He experienced was because of us and our sin. It is what we did to Him. And He chose to stay on this path anyway. He chose to stay on the cross. Thereby handing his human will over to the Father, leaving nothing but the Divine Will. He chose to love anyway despite all of that.

Then Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.” Having said this, he breathed his last.  Luke 23:46

What would the world look like if we all chose to love like that? If we let God take our sin to the cross and fill us with the Divine Will. Thus we can understand now what Saint Paul meant when he said;

that he might create in himself one new person in place of the twoEphesians 2:15

No longer is the human will tempted to fight the Divine. Nothing is left but the Divine Will, which is all goodness and perfection and knows no evil in it.

The Saints who walked this path often speak of the devil as an annoyance, a gnat, think Saint Catherine of Siena. This is because they have been lifted past hatred into the heavenly realm. But they all walked the path of crucifixion. They denied the “feelings” of their human will, and chose the cross willingly, thereby choosing God first. It is the unitive way.

These Saints understand that everything God created was out of love. All the angels, even those who fell, were made from God’s love. Hell exists because of Gods love. Hell will be for eternity because God doesn’t know how to stop loving. That there are those who chose to reject the love doesn’t make God stop loving. These Saints know this and love like God loves. It is almost incomprehensible, but for the mystery of faith and of the Trinity, we can know it to be true.

One thing to know about this path, especially in todays world, is that it feels like persecution. Many run away, many deny Jesus, but those who make it to the crucifixion and stand at the cross, will be raised by His glory.

There are many things happening in the church these days, many things that may make a soul feel despair or disheartened. Stick to the Way, the things you have been taught.

But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 2 Timothy 3:14-16

Embrace the cross and move past what feels good. And remember, if you do this;

The God of peace will shortly crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Romans 16:20

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , , , , , | 11 Comments

Requiescat in Pace Daddy

Michael Kevin Green September 7, 1938 – July 16, 2021

And Jesus said to the man, “Stand up and go. Your faith has healed you.” Luke 17:19

Dad passed away peacefully in his sleep on the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. He had received last rites on July 7, 2021. My prayer is the Lord received him and said, “well done good and faithful servant.”

Please pray for the repose of his soul and for my family as we grieve the loss of our Patriarch.

Obituary

Michael Kevin Green, age 82, of Franklin, TN was called by the Lord peacefully in his sleep while at home with his wife Mary Jo and his daughter Susan’s family on Friday, July 16, 2021, the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.

Born September 7, 1938 in Washington, D.C. Michael was the 8th of 12 children in the family of the late Philip & Dolores Green.  Michael attended the Catholic University Campus School and Mackin High School, both in Washington, D.C. before earning a Bachelors and Masters degree from the Catholic University of America, also in Washington, D.C.  He served his country as a member of the U.S. Air Force from which he was honorably discharged in 1966.  In a career marked by commitment to education, athletics, and service to the Church, Michael spent 36 years as a Catholic High School teacher, the last 33 at Archbishop John Carroll High School in DC.  In addition to teaching, he served as the football announcer for many years, and coached multiple sports.  A crowning achievement came when he coached the 1973 baseball team to a conference championship.  His athletic resume also included time as a baseball umpire, during which he officiated at several marquee high school and college games, including Army vs. Navy.

Michael married the love of his life, Mary Josephine Carr Green, on October 13, 1962.  Long time parishioners of Saint John the Evengelist Church in Silver Spring, MD, together they raised four children as faithful Roman Catholics, with Michael coaching each of the four children in at least one sport.  In 2002, Michael was recognized for his many years of service to the parish with a “Commitment to Excellence” award.  In retirement, Michael and Mary Jo spent several years in Bethany Beach, DE, before moving to Franklin, TN in 2016. 

He was preceded in death by his siblings, Joseph Green, Mary Anne Sonnenshein, Cecilia Pincus, Bernadette Rogers, Agnes Cammack, Teresa Rosser, Peter Green, Patrick Green, Jane Gilroy and Daniel Green.

Survivors include his loving wife of 58 1/2 years, Mary Jo; children, Elizabeth (Roger) O’Donoghue Jr, Jennifer (Eddie) Ferris, Michael (Jennifer) Green, Jr. and Susan (Jason) Skinner; sister, Dolores (Greg) Milmoe; grandchildren, Roger (Megan) O’Donoghue III, John (Melissa) O’Donoghue, Marykate (Brian) Leach, Katy (Christopher) Hurff, Erin (Bobby) Worthington, Maggie (Roque) Calvo, Billy (Megan) Ferris, Elyse Ferris, Teresa Green, Monica Green, Ryan Skinner, Sean Skinner, and Sarah Skinner; and great grandchildren Roger O’Donoghue IV, Patrick O’Donoghue, Kaylee Hurff, Henry Worthington, Rocco Calvo, and Liam Ferris.

The family will receive friends from 12:15 PM – 2:00 PM on Thursday, July 22, 2021 at St. Philip Catholic Church where a funeral Mass will be held at 2:00 PM with the deceased’s nephew, Father Joel Rogers, CPM, officiating.

A graveside service will be held at 11:00 AM on Friday, July 23, 2021 at Calvary Cemetery, Nashville, TN.

Expressions of sympathy may take the form of donations to Radio Maria USA in loving memory of Michael Kevin Green.  Donations can be made online at radiomaria.us, by calling 888-408-0201, or by check to Radio Maria USA, 601 Washington St. Alexandria, LA 71301

You may also donate to the Father’s of Mercy in loving Memory of Michael Green.  Make checks payable to Father’s of Mercy 806 Shaker Museum Rd. Auburn, KY 42206

Funeral Services Provided by Williamson Memorial, Franklin, TN

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , | 71 Comments

The Surrender of Earning a Plenary Indulgence

Saint Francis kisses the wounds of Christ

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who are being protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 1 Peter 1:3-5

One of the most misunderstood, and perhaps abused, teachings of the church is the plenary indulgence. I have to admit, it took me forever to understand what this was all about. But as with any of the church’s rich traditions, this is but a gift of God to us.

I will start by stating the church’s definition of a plenary indulgence from EWTN;

This is how an indulgence is defined in the Code of Canon Law (can. 992) and in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (n. 1471): “An indulgence is a remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven, which the faithful Christian who is duly disposed gains under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the Church which, as the minister of redemption, dispenses and applies with authority the treasury of the satisfactions of Christ and the saints”.

Um, what? I don’t know about you, but when I first read that, I did not have any understanding of what this meant. And it also is a teaching that seems to have been lost over the last 60 years. So this is one I prayed on a lot to try to comprehend, try to understand, even as I knew it was a good I was trying to earn.

The conditions to earn a plenary indulgence are as follows;

  1. In general, the gaining of indulgences requires certain prescribed conditions (below, nn. 3, 4), and the performance of certain prescribed works ….. [in this case, those granted for the Feast of Mercy]
  2. To gain indulgences, whether plenary or partial, it is necessary that the faithful be in the state of grace at least at the time the indulgenced work is completed.  [i.e. one must be a Catholic, not excommunicated or in schism.]
  3. A plenary indulgence can be gained only once a day. In order to obtain it, the faithful must, in addition to being in the state of grace:
    •  have the interior disposition of complete detachment from sin, even venial sin;
    •  have sacramentally confessed their sins;
    •  receive the Holy Eucharist (it is certainly better to receive it while participating in Holy Mass, but for the indulgence only Holy Communion is required);
    •  pray for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff.
  4. It is appropriate, but not necessary, that the sacramental Confession and especially Holy Communion and the prayer for the Pope’s intentions take place on the same day that the indulgenced work is performed; but it is sufficient that these sacred rites and prayers be carried out within several days (about 20) before or after the indulgenced act. Prayer for the Pope’s intentions is left to the choice of the faithful, but an “Our Father” and a “Hail Mary” are suggested. One sacramental Confession suffices for several plenary indulgences, but a separate Holy Communion and a separate prayer for the Holy Father’s intentions are required for each plenary indulgence.
  5. For the sake of those legitimately impeded, confessors can commute both the work prescribed and the conditions required (except, obviously, detachment from even venial sin).
  6. Indulgences can always be applied either to oneself or to the souls of the deceased, but they cannot be applied to other persons living on earth.

So let me see if I can sort through all of what is being said and done here.

An indulgence repairs for sins, the way a new window repairs a broken one. You can be forgiven for breaking the glass, but the repercussions, or the broken window, is still there. The indulgence repairs the wound so to be “made perfect” again.

Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:48

An indulgence is “earned” by proper disposition and doing what is asked by the church.

If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. John 14:15-16

The indulgence is actually teaching us to surrender all we have to God so the merits of Christ can be fully applied to us. The more we rely on Christ, the more He repairs all repercussions of the sin we have committed. He does so through the authority of the church because the goal is the communion of the whole Mystical Body with Christ the head of the church.

An indulgence is God’s way of giving the authority to the church to help walk us on a path of total surrender to Christ.

We are asked to be detached from sin because He cannot repair fully a wound we will not hand over. Every time we justify our sin, we are attached to it, we haven’t given it to God, and He cannot fully be our savior repairing for what we have broken.

I yelled at you or was abusive to you because I had a hard day – I have justified. And people learn you need to be avoided when you had a hard day. They cannot rely upon you. And the wound grows bigger and cannot be repaired without drastic measure. I cling to my abusive ways to handle what is happening. But the one who converts – surrenders that to God. They detach from the sin that helped them cope and they hand it fully to God. God can then step in and forgive the sin and repair the relationships. People see the difference in who you have become and the healing repairs all that has been broken. A person who has surrendered all to God looks and acts different.

He who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice. For this reason my joy has been fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:29-30

In other words, our wounds become repaired by the holes in His hands and feet when we hand them over. And my friend Ashley once said, each communion we receive in a state of grace after confessing removes the penalty for our sin (with the other conditions met). I realized this is because we have surrendered it fully to him. This grace can be applied anywhere, and this is when we see miraculous healing, especially in our relationships.

It is why when we approach communion in a state of grace we should have no agenda but to do the Will of God and let Him fill us. Confession is vital to our ability to do this. We pray for the Supreme Pontiff because it is through his authority that all of this is bound in heaven. We become bound to the Cross of Christ which repairs for all we have done. So many want to skip over the cross, hold onto their sins that make them sit comfortably. Purification from sin hurts, but it is the ultimate healing. You cannot reach resurrection without handing it all over. You will never be fully healed without detaching from your sin.

We think of an indulgence as us doing something, but the reality is it is teaching us to rely solely upon him. It is teaching us that we cannot save ourselves. He is the one doing because our hardened hearts have softened. The church has given us a pathway to teach us to rely on Christ. What an absolute heartache that this teaching has been decimated because it has moved us away from total surrender to God.

Indulgences are probably one of the most beautiful things (besides the Sacraments themselves) that the church has offered us, but because it is so misunderstood it is under utilized. We would catapult to holiness as a Body of Christ if we knew truly knew what this teaching meant.

Indulgences can be earned by your surrender to Christ and then given to a person in purgatory. The Lord allows us to partake in all of His saving action because he loves us so much. The intention of our heart must always be pure, no other ulterior motive than to help the repair Body of Christ. And it teaches us to give of ourselves the way Christ gave to us. We become another Christ and that’s exactly what the world needs.

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , , | 19 Comments

Our Lady of Light

Our Lady of Light

Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.  And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. Genesis 1:3-5

I write in my journal as if God is speaking to me. I submit myself to the authority of the church and if they state what I have written is wrong, they church is correct and I am wrong.

July 7, 2021

Beloved Lily of the Father,

We were always there, our love creates. We have no beginning and no end. We are one. She is the first thought of creation, the first word of creation, the first action of creation. Let there be light. She is Our Lady of Light.

As a star takes thousands of years for the light to be seen on earth, so too she was there as first creation, later to be seen at a certain point in time on the earth. The Immaculate Conception.

She is clothed in the sun.

Light was separated from the darkness and the angels fell. From Envy and Pride, they did not want to serve.

Her purity, her grace, her humility; She is the Mother of God. She is the Mother of the Church, crowned with 12 stars of authority. Light of the Apostles whose Savior was housed in her womb.

Rebuild my church.

The Glorious Queen of Heaven and earth, virgin most powerful. She is Queen of the Angels and has called upon the Powers and Principalities to do battle on your behalf. She sends forth Holy Legions.

Natural Order will be restored. The facade will come crumbling down.

Do not be afraid.

Revelation 20

The Most Holy Trinity

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , , , , , , | 11 Comments

We are a people of Dementia

The beauty of a church that draws eyes to heaven. A visual depiction of the goodness of God

But take care and watch yourselves closely, so as neither to forget the things that your eyes have seen nor to let them slip from your mind all the days of your life; make them known to your children and your children’s children. Deuteronomy 4:9

Mom’s diagnosis with dementia came to us after she had her first stroke. We had noticed her memory lapses prior, but she had covered it all up well. After the second stroke there was no hiding anything. Her memory was gone and her world and ours changed drastically.

There is something that the medical world calls “confabulation” that dementia patients do. Confabulation is a type of memory error in which gaps in a person’s memory are unconsciously filled with fabricated, misinterpreted, or distorted information. When this happens it is very difficult. Sometimes the error contains bits of reality, but it is so distorted that it is unrecognizable as true. So for example, my mother did actually live at the beach, but she is convinced we are there now. The stories are often so outlandish that it is key to to keep a sense of humor about things. It is sometimes the only way to get through the pain.

When mom and dad first moved in and mom began telling these stories, it was very difficult. First, I didn’t always know if what she was saying was true. For example, one day mom started talking about meeting the Princess of Wales. I thought it was a lie until I remembered and dad verified that mom did actually meet Princess Diana when she worked closely with the Reagan White House.

Mom and Dad getting ready to go meet Princess Diana

But other stories I know not to be true like when she told me she was a cupcake maker just after watching a Hallmark movie about a cupcake maker. Mom is also, at least in the evening, very convinced she has small babies and she gets anxious looking for them.

When all of this started happening, my first response was to correct her, to tell her the truth. I would say, “no mom, you aren’t a cupcake maker, you are retired and live with me. I am your daughter.” She would become so angry and agitated, like I have never seen before. She would call me a liar and dig her heels in. She would accuse me of conspiring against her. After watching some videos a doctor made on dementia patients we learned the term “confabulation” and that in her mind she is not lying. That because of the damage to her brain from the disease, her brain has found a different reality to help her cope and that reality can change from day to day. Any mention of the truth can throw her into a state of extreme agitation and anger. The advice the doctor gave was to either go along with it or to try to distract her. These are the things that keep the peace. I even went to a Priest to ask whether doing these things put me in a situation of lying or if it was okay to “go along with” the distortion. After pulling out the catechism and reading Saint Augustine about lying, he assured me it was okay to go along with it to keep the peace in my household.

We bought mom a baby doll that she carries with her. It alleviates her anxiety about her “missing babies”

One of the worst parts about confabulation is when your mother accuses you of things that are so very not true. Often in my mom’s eyes, I am keeping her trapped, in prison. If I have to change her or shower her or try to help her she yells at me that she can do it herself and I have no right to do these things. Never mind that she cannot walk or dress herself. In her head she often thinks I am imprisoning her even as I try something as simple as keeping her clean. She has called me a liar more than once and she accuses me of taking her freedom away.

After months of now dealing with this, I began to see that this is how God must feel about us. From my perspective I am caring for and loving her. I give all that I have to her. My home, my physical work of my hands, my things, whatever she needs, what ever I have is hers. But because of the damage to her brain her reality is distorted and she blames me for her problems and rails at me (at least some of the time, not everyday is this way). The more I would try to tell truth, the more she refuses to believe it, so I let her be. I try my best to always respond in love to her no matter what it is she may be saying to me. Some days are harder than others, but thus far I have handled it well with the help of my wonderful husband.

In mom’s case she can’t help it. A disease has ravaged her brain. But when I look at the world I see something that reminds me of dementia. People have had their thoughts so distorted by the enemy that they believe lies. God gives and gives and gives, and people rail at Him, accuse Him of their suffering, accuse Him of taking their freedom, all the while their brains have been shaped by the enemy who is actually the liar. In mom’s case she cannot help it. In our society we have chosen to believe lies and we run away from the very one who can heal us, or even worse we actually stand in pride in front of the healer and tell Him His ways are wrong, stuck in our own pride. Just a sampling of the lies we have chosen as a society to believe and we can see it is no wonder we are in the state we are in;

Politicians believe that they are actually helping women by paving a way for them to easily kill their children.

Parents and educators believe they are helping their child by allowing the purpose of sexuality to be twisted or even worse transitioning them into a sex that they are not.

Scientists and doctors believe they are helping mankind by stopping our fertility with contraception and by making vaccines on the backs of aborted children.

The distortion is displayed out in the open now.

People display Vaccine saves on Christ the Redeemer Statue making a mockery of the actual Savior

And anyone who tries to tell them the truth gets railed at and canceled. They rage at the God they do not know who is only trying to make them clean. God says let me love you. I want to give and give and give blessing to you and to care for you. And society screams “no” making their decisions based on fabrications and distorted information. They see God as the jailer all the while they have handed themselves over to the jailer who comes from the pit of hell.

And so it is here dear brothers and sisters, that those who see the truth must ask ourselves a question. Can we love the individual in front of us anyway?

With my mother it is easy to keep loving her. She is my mom after all, and I see what has happened. I know it is a disease and it is not her fault. I know how well she loved me even when I was a bratty toddler, teenager, and sometimes adult. Mom sacrificed for me, so the sacrifice for her becomes easy.

But with the person you don’t know who is wrapped in lies can you still love?

“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. If you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to receive as much again. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Luke 6:32-36

Mercy and love are the answer. This doesn’t mean “going along with” the lies as you might go along with a dementia patients confabulation. We must stand in the way as Jesus did. But we must also understand the persecution that comes with that. This is because they don’t want just your love, they want the acceptance of their sin. They want you to tell them their sin is good. But we can’t. God alone is good and the sin is destroying them. So we must be ready for what comes when you stand against sin.

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.” John 15:18

In time I suspect that mom will totally forget who I am. It seems our society has totally forgotten who God is, how good God is. Let those of us who know him not forget and shine light in the darkness for others to see.

Psalm 103, a Psalm of David

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
    and all that is within me,
    bless his holy name.
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
    and do not forget all his benefits—
who forgives all your iniquity,
    who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the Pit,
    who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
who satisfies you with good as long as you live[a]
    so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

The Lord works vindication
    and justice for all who are oppressed.
He made known his ways to Moses,
    his acts to the people of Israel.
The Lord is merciful and gracious,
    slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
He will not always accuse,
    nor will he keep his anger forever.
10 He does not deal with us according to our sins,
    nor repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as the heavens are high above the earth,
    so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
    so far he removes our transgressions from us.
13 As a father has compassion for his children,
    so the Lord has compassion for those who fear him.
14 For he knows how we were made;
    he remembers that we are dust.

15 As for mortals, their days are like grass;
    they flourish like a flower of the field;
16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone,
    and its place knows it no more.
17 But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting
    on those who fear him,
    and his righteousness to children’s children,
18 to those who keep his covenant
    and remember to do his commandments.

19 The Lord has established his throne in the heavens,
    and his kingdom rules over all.
20 Bless the Lord, O you his angels,
    you mighty ones who do his bidding,
    obedient to his spoken word.
21 Bless the Lord, all his hosts,
    his ministers that do his will.
22 Bless the Lord, all his works,
    in all places of his dominion.
Bless the Lord, O my soul.

Posted in Catholic | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments