Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Don't Run From The Light!

My friend Josh Kusch was the first man to join in this apostolate, and I was glad to send him a tunic sewn by my late mother.  Josh has been graced with a hungry, clear intellect and a heart for the suffering and those far from Christ.    This might seem like a dual call or gift, but it is really the same invitation from the Blessed Trinity to share in the one life in God.  Nowadays it is fashionable in and out of the Church to fudge or set in opposition the relationship between reason/intellect and the compassionate heart of Christ (or dogma/doctrine vs. pastoral practice) but that is nonsense since Jesus is both the Eternal Word (the Logos which is Truth itself) and the One whose side was opened on the Cross to reveal his Sacred Heart.

Paradoxically, when we think about the deep things of God, we should do so with the attitude of a child: innocent, receptive, trusting, and eager to embrace what our Father reveals.  This is how we are given wisdom, which is nothing other than the knowledge of God and his divine order.  In yet another paradox, many of the truly wise are also the unlearned.  Did you know that during the Enlightenment, God raised up many lowly Franciscan saints (especially Capuchins) to confound the intellect of the learned?  I wear a relic of one such friar, Blessed Didacus Joseph, otherwise known as the "Dunce of Cadiz".  Did you know that Blessed Mother Theresa of Calcutta began her Nobel Prize speech with two cringeworthy (but harmless) errors about St. Francis?  Yet she had more wisdom than her entire audience!

We should read scripture and receive the life of the saints with the same spirit: the spirit of a child and not the "spirit of the world".  The worldly man plays politics, watches public opinion, acts coy, trusts in his cleverness, seeks not to offend even as he offends Truth Himself.  We all have to resist the worldly impulse, that gravitational pull of our wounded nature.  We must be vigilant because we shouldn't tinker with what God has revealed.  As I saw first-hand at the time of my conversion, the wisdom of the world is rubbish.  God and his ways are so different than ours.  God's vision for us is so much grander than we'd allow.  With that in mind, our brother Josh has recently written two excellent articles to defend God's neglected word.  He has reached out and taken hold of two of the "third rails" of our time: divorce and "re-marriage" and the relationship between husband and wife.  Both articles have been enthusiastically received.


Peter Kreeft, a wise and humble philosopher, recently echoed some of my thoughts: "A German cardinal who is very scholarly and often quite wise said one of the worst things I ever heard a cardinal say when trying to justify relaxing the Church's demand to live in chastity even if one is civilly divorced.  He said that the Church does not expect everyone to be a moral hero.  That is exactly what the Church does expect, because her Lord expects it."

Amen!  Thank you, Peter Kreeft.  Also, thanks to Josh, Chris, Felix and all men who aim to be "moral heroes" as husbands, fathers, teachers and street evangelists.  God looks on in delight as you fight the good fight.

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