All Conversations in My Heart
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
 
I feel it might be proper to explain this Blog. First I do stand by the words of Fr Robert Wild, who wrote, “ Very few people have the opportunity to receive our tradition..... “They receive it, if at all, through books, classwork, a good christian family and a holy friend. Few have opportunity to be immersed in a totally catholic environment for a few years, to be taught bu elders who have received the tradition, and are passing it on, through their own living witness”. For me it was in a Catholic Parish of the war years in the UK and through a father who truly practised our religion. Let me get it straight I can say that tradition is so spun in today’s church that as Paul 6th. Wrote on another matter, “No more changes the Faithful are confused” Tradition, or part of is the living history of the unchanging church.
I feel it might be proper to explain this Blog. I know from the shallowness of faith in most Catholics, I mean often it is only ‘skin deep’ therefore it will cause, many to question the truth of my following thoughts or explanations. In the Church today, it is though some these actions of pious reverence never happened, but they certainly did. If they did not why do so many of the older Catholics have returned to “beating their breast” at the, ’through my fault’ of the Confiteor? Many of you who converted over the last period of time, even cradle Catholics, are surely not aware of good saintly actions. The Prelates of today have readily admitted, have not been properly taught, I hope you do know that '‘saintly’ means ‘in a state of the grace that sanctifies’. Often as I find myself slipping into the level of prayer called “Divine Contemplation” one fact always emerges, Catholics are not in the habit of being Catholic anymore. You will not understand what Divine Contemplation is until you study the way of prayer as taught by the Church. Try the, “Art of Divine Contemplation” by Dom Savinien Louismet.
This priestly writer can certainly help anyone who is Catholic and truly practising to examine his or her prayer life. Dom Savinien looks upon this as the entrance to a mystical life. He places strictures upon this life. He notes and is adamant it is only a state for every catholic who is a true practicing Catholic. A catholic who is neither fallen nor lost. It is the natural way for those in sanctifying grace. Never I ask, mix the mystical with the supernatural, nor meditation with contemplation. As we examine ourselves, a mystic wrote. “It is or can be said whether we examine ourselves or others we always remain on the surface, both when we examine ourselves or others. When we look at our interior life this surface examination means so often we do not want to hurt our pride or suffer a feeling we must change. When we examine others, our pride as examiners makes us unjust judges and any hint to others causes their pride to close out any doubt about what their interior life is”.
Many in times of warning, loudly and stridently, “Thou shalt not judge me”. This book on contemplation will help those who use it to know the level they reach in their prayer life. If you doubt this statement, consider it this way. On earth, in this world we ascend towards Heaven where all contemplate the Divine. Our life is one tortuous ascent heavenwards. One can learn how to commune with God and what happens when we approach the highest level of prayer, this all depends on the state of our souls. This book teaches us to know the different levels we reach.
I mentioned at the start, “our Catholic shallowness,' a shallowness from which I do not exclude other christians, of our times, pseudo or otherwise. It is still as told by Christ in His parables of the Harvester and rocky ground. He tells us of the difficulty that seeds (of wisdom) have to contend with, specifically I recall the untreated soil or stony grounds.
Now the early part of any prayer life, long before Divine Contemplation, we use our hearts and minds in thoughts loosely called meditations. The Church has provided subjects for meditation. We have the pictures on the wall of the Church, called Stations of the Cross. We have the mysteries of the rosary. We have the Poor souls languishing in Purgatory. We think of our families and friends. These are all thoughts in our minds expressed in intelligible words. Now by prayer we can use intercessors for our petitions. How many times in Litanies do we ask in our responses to Mary, to Joseph and to the Saints, “pray for us?” We as Catholics venerate Blessed Mary, the Saints and our Guardian Angel. We do not adore or worship but venerate. How awful it must be for our Guardian Angel to have to stay by our souls praying for our soul, often dead to God by our grave sins? How often Blessed Mary our spiritual mother must live with her distaste for the actions of priests and her Children. Perhaps it might be apropos to ask how many of us have even reached this first level?
Most of these actions have died out and the lack of piety in the Church is so apparent. These actions have been replaced, supplanted by new ways, because of ignorance and infertile ground or our hearts of stone. Many of the new ways have no relevance in the sacrifice, in acts of reverence and are certainly out of sync with Rome and the Curial Instructions of the Pope and his prelates. They are the headstones on the shallow graves of our spirituality.
Unfortunately today we are, as Catholics, more sensual than spiritual. In fact our actions before God are so far removed from the spiritual. These new ways are ugly and distract us from prayerful acts. They have either no symbolic relevance or have died out since they are unnecessary. I mean holding the hands during the Our Father as sign of unity, how unintelligent. Receiving Holy Communion, in a state of grace, is true unity. Did not Christ mention in John 14:20 the very special brand of unity He wants? Is not John Chapter 15 a large teaching on unity?
I find the holding of hands with others whom I suspect are not in a state of grace very dangerous. The Church Fathers and Popes down through the ages very strong on the contagion of sin and how it is passed around. In fact the Abbey Church I attend gets many regular visitors for other faiths. Very few of these groups or individuals return and knowing some of them I ask why they came and why they do not come back. “We only came because our pastor was away. We feel no difference between what you do and what we do”. We are not different they are right. We do not kneel at altar rails. We kneel in the pews, without any expressions of piety or reverence. We slouch to the altar, some chewing gum and gazing, it would seem, gazing vacantly into space. So do they. We give our Holy Sacrifice of the Mass to those who are if we are charitable, name as schismatic. No defense of our beliefs there at all. That is if we have any true beliefs.
Nothing makes me wince, interiorly, more than when some member of a touchy-feely cult in the Church says, “I am spiritual”. This statement often rising out a vainglorious opinion of their religious life, but it comes to mind I have found one that is more horrific. A woman told me one day, “I am a victim soul. I suffer for all the aborted babies of the world”. Do these people ever consider what they say and what is the heavenly view of their life? I make these moral observations without prejudice and certainly without any judgmental sentencing on my part. I do pray they will go to confession more often. Let God do the sentencing.
I am, of course, talking more about the West with observations and experiences seen in my past and present life. These are the actions and circumstances with which I am more experienced. This then is more personal than anything else. These being my reasons, how you accept the content or how you behave is a matter of your conscience and if you can successfully silence it, your mind, that is somewhat lacking in information, then we have nothing in common. You stand before God and I kneel before the Almighty. Of course you will, with common sense for your eternal future, will check with your Parish priest, who is the Pastor of your soul. Check to see if this is in conformity with Church teaching or habits. You must check for veracity in what you read, even up to and including your Bishop. No matter how these thoughts, how this blog is written, so many will be uncomfortable, perhaps even feel an inner poke of some feeling. Then of course as is our wont in this world, those affected will find ways to justify their stand on how I they personally feel. Do you or your parish priest and of course many of you, that these could be expressions of a lack of respect shown to Our Lord, Mary’s Son and expressed visibly by our behaviour in the King’s House. Is this not, what the Church is? It is not the counting house of nursery rhymes, although, with the demands of the Bishops who have become more cognizance of finances than salvation, I have to wonder. It is the Palace or in a very personal way the Temple where the King should reign. Can we say, without doubt, we personally with a temple and interior altar of our own, and the Church with a temple and altar, is inhabited by the King of Glory? Are you in a state of grace? Better still does your Parish Priest think so. He should know so if he sees you in the Confession regularly and he is confident that he has passed on the doctrines and dogmas of the Church. Even to conquering his fear of the woman parishioners and taught Humanae Vitae. Why not check with him?
 
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