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St. Alphonsus Liguori – Charity Envieth Not May 12, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Domestic Church, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, reading, Saints, sanctity, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, Virtue.
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I hate it when I post it without a title.  Having to do business a little differently these days.

Another really good excerpt from St. Alphonsus on  the sin of envy, and its incompatibility with the Christian call to charity.  From The Holy Eucharist, pp. 323-326 (only portions).  My emphasis and comments:

St. Gregory explains this…..characteristic of charity in saying, that as charity despises all earthly greatness, it cannot possibly provoke her envy.  “She envieth not, because, as she desireth nothing in this world, she cannot envy earthly prosperity.”

Hence we must distinguish two kinds of envy, one evil and the other holy.  The evil kind is that which envies and repines at the worldly goods possessed by others on this earth.  But holy envy, so far from wishing to be like, rather compassionates the great ones of the world, who live in the midst of honors and earthly pleasures.  She seeks and desires God alone, and has no other aim besides that of loving Him as much as she can; and therefore she has a pious envy of those who love Him more than she does, for she would, if possible, surpass the very seraphim in loving Him……… [Which kind of envy do we hear spoken abroad today by high Church leadership?  Do we not hear talk that stirs up envy between those who have less towards those who have more?]

……..we must not only perform good works, but we must perform them well. In order that our works may be good and perfect, they must be done with the sole end of pleasing God.  This was the admirable praise bestowed on Jesus Christ: “He that done all things well” (Mk viii:37).  Many actions may in themselves be praiseworthy, but from being performed for some other purpose than for the glory of God, they are often of little or no value in His sight.  St. Mary Magdalene of Pazzi said, “God rewards our actions by the weight of pure intention.”

As much as to say, that according as our intention is pure, so does the Lord accept of and reward our actions.  But, O God, how difficult it is to find an action done solely for Thee!……Oh, this accursed self-love, that makes us lose all or the greater part of the fruit of our good actions!  How many in their most holy employments………labor and exert themselves very much, and gain little or nothing because they do not regard God alone, but worldly honor, or self-interest, or the vanity of making an appearance, or at least their own inclination! [Contemplate how much of the ostensible “good works” done in the Church have been done for a political aim, or for some kind of worldly recognition, in recent years.  Grace adds to grace, but the opposite is also true, and the Church has been mired in a period of marked impiety with the absence of grace abounding almost palpable.  The Church we have being the one the world has deserved, and all that…..]

…..He that works for his own gratification already receives his wages: Amen I say to you, they have received their reward” (Mt vi:5)…….

…….The following are the signs which indicate whether we work solely for God in any spiritual undertaking.  One, if we are not disturbed at the failure of our plans, because when we see it is not God’s will, neither is it any longer our will.  Two, if we rejoice at the good done by others, as heartily as if we ourselves had done it.  Three, if we have no preference for one charge more than for another, but willingly accept that which obedience to superiors enjoins us.  Four, if after our actions we do not seek the thanks or approbation of others, nor are in any way affected if we be found fault with or scolded, being satisfied with having pleased God. And if when the world applauds us we are not puffed up, but meet the vain glory, which might make itself felt, with the reply of the venerable John of Avila: “Get away, thou comest too late, for all has already been given to God.”

——–End Quote———-

Oh good St. Alphonsus, you truly deserve your moniker as the Moral Doctor.  What practical advice for holiness!  Thank you so much, Lord, for sending Your Church such Saints.  Please convert our hearts so that we may emulate them and draw nearer to you, through Your Grace, every day. Even then, we know that we shall be unprofitable servants, who have done no more than their duty, and only returned the gift they have received from You.

Anti-Catholic sentiment showing up more and more in family (divorce) court May 12, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, disaster, error, family, General Catholic, Holy suffering, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society.
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There has been a very sad situation develop locally, where a family, experiencing the division and dissolution so common to so many families in this time of diabolical narcissism, has been further wounded, and gravely so, by a decision of the courts.  That decision was based on a belief that being “too Catholic” is bizarre, extreme, and potentially (if not certainly) dangerous to children.  The fallen away spouse, who abandoned the marriage and has since shacked up with someone else, has been arguing for some time that religious extremism is endangering his children and demands that he should be given greater control over their lives, by having more generous visitation.  Naturally, this father is a former Catholic.

While courts almost always side decisively with the female half of a divorced couple in awarding custody, to the extent that most fathers are generally given custody for all of two weekends a month (a huge problem in and of itself, but not germane here), in this case, it seems the anti-Catholic sentiment of the judge was sufficient to rule contrary to norm, and quite stridently so.  The children will now be placed in a far more confusing situation, and one that places their nascent faith at grave risk.

I don’t want to say anymore regarding the local situation than that, as I am striving to preserve general anonymity while imploring prayers for this suffering family.  I would like to warn, however, that this is a situation that will likely afflict Catholic families more in more in future, where religious fervor, far from being the boon to good morals and solid citizenship it traditionally was held to impart, will now be seen as a grave problem to be eradicated, something akin to psychological illness, a danger to self and especially to children exposed to this “extremism.”  And, it must be said, we shall have Pope Francis and most of the bishops and clergy to thank for this situation.

Already in divorce courts across the land, it is being touted that abandoned spouses who remain true to their marital vows and uphold the Doctrine of the Faith in their homes are dangerous zealots,  radicals who are “more Catholic than the pope.”  Numerous papal statements, including ones involving formal teaching, can be pointed to as a contrast to an adherence to the traditional practice of the Faith.  Numerous supporting statements can be found from the majority of bishops and clergy, even to the point of inviting them in as expert witnesses to refute the “errors” of “extremist” traditional Catholics.  The stage is being set – has been set – for making the raising of children according to the constant belief and practice of the Faith, if not illegal (yet), at least so strange and unsettling as to cast grave doubt on the stability of its practitioners.

This of course goes back to the maxim, in a world where everyone has gone insane, the sane are judged to be crazy.  While it is always risky to extrapolate current trends far out into the future, all the signs regarding governmental/societal “tolerance” for the raising of children in a faithful, Christian manner are negative in the extreme.  Once again, the complicity of the hierarchy in the dissolution of Christendom and the internal attack on Catholic Dogma have played an enormous role in bringing this demonic  situation about.   I’ve said it before, but, I used to believe that my wife and I would generally be able to raise our children free from outward persecution, while I was quite concerned for my children and grand-children, but now I think we’ll be incredibly blessed to do so (especially with a new baby extending our parenting another 6-7 years in the future).

That’s how fast things have fallen apart, within and without the Church.  Pope Francis’ papacy is a watershed in this terrifying trend, however, as, for the first time, the enemies of true piety and devotion can point to official Church documents, from the highest level, casting severe doubt, if not completely contradicting, whole swaths of Catholic belief and practice.  We  haven’t even begun to see the dread effects of these incredible novelties (errors) in practice.  It took a while for Griswold vs. Connecticut (and similar) to get us to pseudo-sodo-marriage, but the path was set in stone from the first step.  The same will occur with Evangelii Guadium and Amoris Laetitia, unless they be formally rebuked and corrected, at some point.

Again, please pray for this abandoned spouse, who has been a rock of faith, and especially the children.