At the 12:10 Mass at St. Peter’s Church on Capitol Hill, the pastor suggested that St. Peter Chrysologus, whose feast we celebrate today (July 30), may have just loved Twitter; he is known for his short, inspired sermons.
Today’s Magnificat offers an example of one of them — one I suspect Pope Francis might be fond of.
(Too bad Pope Francis is not doing the morning homilies at Domus Sanctæ Marthæ this month because today’s Gospel reading was one he would have made some good points about, complete with seed, weeds, the Devil, and a fiery furnace. He talks a lot about the Devil — he did in Rio, and expect more of it; so much so that I’m determined to getting #DamnedDevil trending on Twitter one day. If we call evil out, we’ll be better equipped to reject it when it tries to mess with our lives. He made that very Ignatian point when he met with Latin American bishops Sunday afternoon in Rio, as I mention here.)
(More about the pope and the devil here.)
But now to St. Peter C:
“He sowed weeds among the wheat” — because the devil has become accustomed to sow of his own accord heresies among the faithful, sin among the saints, quarrels among the peaceful, deceptions among the simple, and wickedness among the innocent. [Look around … ain’t that the truth. We must pray for one another!] He does this not to acquire the weeds of cockle, but to destroy the wheat; not to capture the guilty ones, but to steal away the innocent. An enemy seeks the leader rather than a soldier. He does not besiege the dead but attacks the living. Thus, the devil is not seeking to capture sinners whom he already has under his dominion, but is laboring thus to ensnare the just.
“He sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away” — because with great might the devil drives men towards destruction. But, after he has prostrated someone, he abandons him. The devil seeks not the man, but his destruction. Brethren, he rejoices over our evils, he swells with pride over our ruin, he grows strong from our wounds, he thirsts after our death. The devil does not wish to possess a man, but to destroy him. Why? Because he does not wish, he does not dare, he does not allow the man to arrive at heaven from which the devil fell.
Or, for tweeting: #DamnedDevil wants to destroy you. Reject him.