Friday 22nd June 2018

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A Leaven In The World… Confirmed To Fight For Truth And Souls

June 11, 2018 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK

I gratefully enjoyed the privilege of being delegated by Cardinal Wuerl this month for the purpose of conferring through the traditional rite the Sacrament of Confirmation on several young men of our parish. The traditional rite is, of course, beautiful in the richness of the prayers, but also in the signs used. One of the elements omitted in postconciliar times is what is often called a “slap” given by the confirming bishop on the cheek of the person just confirmed.
The traditional “slap” or pat on the cheek was significant for symbolizing the necessity of the newly confirmed to be willing to fight for the faith as newly minted soldiers of Christ. The graces of Confirmation strengthen the baptized to take on for the responsibility of knowing and defending the faith.
The many who apostatize from the faith so soon after being confirmed are a witness to the need for a deeper emphasis on the fight to persevere. Persecution has reached new highs with “gay lobby” bullies taking Christian cake bakers who refuse to broadcast their sins via icing all the way to the Supreme Court — instead of taking their business elsewhere.
Sometimes the fight to be faithful occurs each Sunday with the primary commitment to keep the Commandments, by attending Holy Mass to keep the Lord’s Day holy. Certainly, for many of our young people newly confirmed, that fight begins the very next Sunday after their Confirmation if their parents are among the boomer generation of lost souls.
The Gospel of the Second Sunday after Pentecost, Luke 14:16-24, which I proclaimed at the Mass of Confirmation, makes plain the need to go against the grain in order to remain in Christ. In the parable related through Scripture the master throws open his doors for a sumptuous banquet more wonderful than anything they can provide for themselves and yet his guests, with all the predictability of human nature, find reasons to refuse.
“A certain man made a great supper, and invited many. And he sent his servant, at the hour of the supper, to say them that were invited, that they should come, for now all things were ready. And they began all at once to make excuse. The first said to him: I have bought a farm, and must needs go out, and see it: I pray thee hold me excused. And another said: I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to try them; I pray thee hold me excused. And another said: I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.”
Will we be among those who make excuses to remove God from our priorities, except perhaps in the superficiality of fruitless and insincere speech, as so many have made of religion? Our God demands deeds and Sunday Mass is among those ways in which through us He speaks of His presence in the world. Of course our reception of Christ truly present in the Eucharist is God’s most eloquent lesson about His desire to live in us and thus in the world for others.
Deeds, at the same time, which are contrary to the Gospel mislead and scandalize if performed by priests or others in authority.
Defending the faith for all of the baptized and confirmed today is a constant duty, what with the spread of fake news about the Church and her teachings so easily spread on the Internet and social networks. So many follow and “like” or “retweet” merely to tickle their ears and increase the net of falsehood. Sadly, among priests there are not lacking those who are willing to tell people whatever they want to hear.
Fr. James Martin, SJ, continues, unrepentant, to be one of these about whom I recently Tweeted:
“People rush to defend priests like @JamesMartinSJ because he does & says some certifiably Catholic stuff. That alone is not enough: priests must also reject evil, & say they are doing so. Jesus said, ‘If you are lukewarm I will spit you out of My mouth’ — Martin is worse than such.”
June has been designated so-called “Pride” month by the “gay lobby.” Martin has gone all out to defend the ways in which this is celebrated. One of Martin’s more outrageous attempts to defend everything LGBT was this gratuitous approbation:
“Not every #PrideMonth event will be to everyone’s taste, but the underlying point — LGBT people should be proud of who they are, after centuries of persecution and violence — is important. If you have #LGBT friends, tell them you love them. If you have none, ask yourself why not.”
To which I responded, also by means of a Tweet:
“ ‘Not to everyone’s taste’? How about obscenely offensive to Christians and dangerous for innocent children? You’re a traitor to Christians and the Faith.”
There is, however, good news and much of it. There are many alternatives for those who want the truth for themselves and their families. Fr. Gerald Murray — at the website The Catholic Thing, on EWTN and Twitter — is just one example of the many priests who disinterestedly speak the truth. Murray is a faithful priest who makes the important distinction between the teachings of the Church and personal opinion.
The Church has offered for many years in Courage a faithful Catholic ministry for those suffering same-sex attraction. There will always be those who reject its message because it teaches the hard truth of Christ that chastity for all means abstention from genital sexual activity for everyone except one man and one woman in the Sacrament of Marriage. Anyone can contact their bishop or diocese for information on how to find a support group in the Courage apostolate.
“LGBT ministry,” in its goals opposed to the message of Courage, is erroneous because it defines people by one aspect of their personhood only. Our temptations do not define us. Giving others courage and hope involves helping them to make the distinction between who they are and what they feel.
We are all called through Baptism and Confirmation to be soldiers of Christ and to fight evil so as to become saints. The suffering entailed by self-denial and rejection of temptation is not optional. Rejecting false prophets like Fr. James Martin, and telling others they must do so, is an imperative of the battle for final victory.
Thank you for reading and praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever. @MCITLFrAphorism
Also: Join our group on pilgrimage to Italia Bella, October 13-21, 2018: Rome, Castel Gandolfo, Assisi, Florence, Tuscany, Venice, and more.
The price is $3,600.00 for nine days. Prices include airfare from your hometown and exclusively 4 or 5 star hotels everywhere. For more info and to sign up visit ProCatholicTours.com, choose “Italia Bella” tour option, then click on the icon for our tour dates of October 13-21. Or to register for the trip call Jennifer Wadsworth at 612-730-2890.

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