Advice for Today

Pray More.

  • The Ubiquitous

    Good advice!

  • Mary N.

    Amen :)

  • Greenpatches

    You can’t argue with that one!

  • James Graham

    Good Afternoon Father,

    My comment is related to “Can a person be good without God”

    I’m not certain where you’re coming from when you make some of the remarks you post. So I’ll just assume you’re on the money . I do so because I am confident of your intentions. My post will relate to my observations as a cradle catholic of 66 plus years and also as a deacon servant of the catholic church.

    Many folks speak of the “good old days” which we know is simply a longing for a perception, perhaps a fantasy of ours. The good days are now. Christ is “alive”. We are called to proclaim that message by our thoughts, words, and deeds. How are “we” (collectively) doing is always the question.

    Well we as catholics here in the USA are somewhere in the 30 percentile in terms of actually attending mass. In terms of “doing” liturgy, well the jury remains deadlocked.

    That fact reflects on you, on me, and on all chosen as “servant leaders”, and of course the blame also falls on all the baptized. … Have we gone forth baptizing the world? Have we even considered our responsibility to “mission”….. ite missa est….. YOU GO MISSION is not exactly a nice phrase, nor is it a request. It is an imperative!

    When I do a trip down memory lane and reflect on my years as an altar server during the pre Vatican II years, I do NOT come away with a feeling of a job well done. Not by a long shot!

    We did NOT do Eucharist. No, instead we attended. We prayed our rosary, our prayer cards and what have you. As an altar boy (NO girls allowed) I answered FOR the people. I also rang the bells at the appointed time in an attempt to bring the attention of the people back to what was going on at the altar! Clearly, the mass belonged to the priest.

    In terms of “mission”, certainly there were folks, most religious orders who missioned. For our part, our faith was purely personal. I “attended” mass to complete MY obligation. I had no conception of we, let alone we as “the body of Christ”. We were hardly a “community”. We for the most part No knowledge of the latin in terms of a vernacular meaning. And in terms of “ite, missa est”, mission was for “missionaries”.

    I spoke of obligation. For his part, the priest was under stress developed as he attempted to perform each and every sign, and also make the sign of the cross the 30 plus times (signifying the years Christ lived here on earth). Oh there was something mysterious going on up at that altar, but we had NO idea of the Mystery.

    BUT we did attend in big numbers. And we had many beautiful customs. Indeed, it satisfied us as catholics.

    Well along came Vatican II and the changes. But, “unified instruction” did not come in the package. It was up to the priest to implement the reform of liturgy as he saw fit. And keep in mind, the priest(s) never had the freedom to make changes other than what time mass would be celebrated. Suffice to say, in my humble opinion, we did a lousy job!

    Some fifty years later, I will ask you and anyone who cares to answer:

    Have we taught any thing about the documents of Vatican II: the constitution of the church; the church in the modern world; and so forth

    Certainly there have been a number of papal encyclicals developed as what I will refer to “extensions” of those documents, but what about us as clergy, as lay…… what have we done!

    Frankly, I will say we are like children who are out on our own for the first time. Sadly, we have passed little onto the generations who have and who will follow us!

    OH, we have the do good, feel good. And let’s not forget the “WWJD” theology. We have taken ecumenism as a way of melding all sorts of faith bodies into a christian people which is fine. But in that process, we may have failed to discover what makes each tradition different? On the other side, a properly executed exercise of this gathering will allow us to celebrate together while coming to an understanding of just who we are… what we believe!

    Father, we have some tough ground to plow. If we follow the “wisdom” of St Francis, others will come to know us by Who we “are” in terms of what we do!

  • Alice S.

    That is very good advice.
    Pray to Mary. Always.