Jokes, quips, wisecracks: John XXIII lived with keen sense of humor (LINK) ›

Lol hilarious quips by soon-to-be-canonized Pope John XXIII

The whole concern of doctrine and its teaching must be directed to the love that never ends. Whether something is proposed for belief, for hope or for action, the love of our Lord must always be made accessible, so that anyone can see that all the works of perfect Christian virtue spring from love and have no other objective than to arrive at love.

Roman Catechism, published 1566.

Let it be sung in every place in every tongue in every age: Christ is risen, alleluia!

#Easter  

Awake, O sleeper

Beautiful and awesome reflection for Holy Saturday: An ancient homily, written by an anonymous source (presented by Fr. Robert Barron), that brings to life that stirring line in the Apostle’s Creed: “He descended into hell.”

What is happening? Today there is a great silence over the earth, a great silence, and stillness, a great silence because the King sleeps; the earth was in terror and was still, because God slept in the flesh and raised up those who were sleeping from the ages. God has died in the flesh, and the underworld has trembled.

Truly he goes to seek out our first parent like a lost sheep; he wishes to visit those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death. He goes to free the prisoner Adam and his fellow-prisoner Eve from their pains, he who is God, and Adam’s son.

The Lord goes into them holding his victorious weapon, his cross. When Adam, the first created man, sees him, he strikes his breast in terror and calls out to all: “My Lord be with you all.” And Christ in reply says to Adam: “And with your spirit.” And grasping his hand he raises him up, saying:

"Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give you light.

I am your God, who for your sake became your son, who for you and your descendants now speak and command with authority those in prison: Come forth, and those in darkness: Have light, and those who sleep: Rise.

I command you: Awake, sleeper, I have not made you to be held a prisoner in the underworld. Arise from the dead; I am the life of the dead. Arise, O man, work of my hands, arise, you who were fashioned in my image. Rise, let us go hence; for you in me and I in you, together we are one undivided person.

For you, I your God became your son; for you, I the Master took on your form; that of slave; for you, I who am above the heavens came on earth and under the earth; for you, man, I became as a man without help, free among the dead; for you, who left a garden, I was handed over to Jews from a garden and crucified in a garden.

Look at the spittle on my face, which I received because of you, in order to restore you to that first divine inbreathing at creation. See the blows on my cheeks, which I accepted in order to refashion your distorted form to my own image.

See the scourging of my back, which I accepted in order to disperse the load of your sins which was laid upon your back. See my hands nailed to the tree for a good purpose, for you, who stretched out your hand to the tree for an evil one.

I slept on the cross and a sword pierced my side, for you, who slept in paradise and brought forth Eve from your side. My side healed the pain of your side; my sleep will release you from your sleep in Hades; my sword has checked the sword which was turned against you.

But arise, let us go hence. The enemy brought you out of the land of paradise; I will reinstate you, no longer in paradise, but on the throne of heaven. I denied you the tree of life, which was a figure, but now I myself am united to you, I who am life. I posted the cherubim to guard you as they would slaves; now I make the cherubim worship you as they would God.

The cherubim throne has been prepared, the bearers are ready and waiting, the bridal chamber is in order, the food is provided, the everlasting houses and rooms are in readiness; the treasures of good things have been opened; the kingdom of heaven has been prepared before the ages.

How little God asks of us sometimes, and yet how reluctant and weak we are to obey.

For those who suffer, for those who are tempted, for those who feel alone, for those who are faced with death, Lord, let me not be found asleep. Watch and pray.

Francis, go repair my house which, as you see, is falling completely to ruin.

-Vision to St. Francis of Assisi

I was reminded today in some reading that our Church is ever in need of saints to lift it up, out of scandal, out of corruption, out of complacency and superficiality. The struggles we face today are new and varied, but as ever they are against the dark forces of the world which ultimately crumble before Christ.

To all those who have despaired of the Catholic Church; come home, come join in the ongoing work of building God’s house. Have faith that God has not called us to create Churches of our own or to lose hope in the face of ruin, but that just as throughout history our demise has been predicted time and time again, just as throughout history we have reached the brink of destruction and approached the gates of hell by the weight of our own pride and sinfulness, the gates of hell have not and will not prevail. God has been faithful to us, and sends us saints in our own time to rebuild a Church in ruins, a Church in constant need. Consider Blessed John Paul II, Benedict XVI, Pope Francis. Consider yourself.

Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you! You were within me, but I was outside, and it was there that I searched for you. In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you.

St. Augustine, Confessions

Priest Survived Labor Camp, Recalls Suffering as Gift (LINK) ›

Perseverance and fidelity. Hope in the face of oppression. Shout-out to Fr. Koo! 

In your heart you know that it is not the same to live without him; what you have come to realize, what has helped you to live and given you hope, is what you also need to communicate to others.

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium (121)

The world will never starve for want of wonders; but only for want of wonder.

G.K. Chesterton