This blog is based on references in the Bible to fear. God wills that we “BE NOT AFRAID”. Many theologians state that the eighth deadly sin is fear. It is fear and its natural animal reaction to fight or flight that is the root cause of our failings to create a Kingdom of God on earth. By “the power of the Holy Spirit” we can be witnesses and “communicators” of a new and redeemed humanity “even to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:7 8). This blog is dedicated to Mary the Mother of God.
Thursday, November 3, 2016
Acts, Chapter 3, Verse 16
And by faith in his name, this man, whom you see and know, his name has
made strong, and the faith that comes
through it has given him this perfect health, in the presence of all of you.
Peter at the beginning
of Christ’s approach to him said Lord Leave me for I am a sinful man-and he
was. Notice that after the resurrection Peter was changed and now took on the
work of Christ. We are all sinners we are all lame as the man in this verse but
by faith we can do the work of Christ and He will change us.
After Pentecost when the
apostle received the Holy Spirit they started to build the church: The Kingdom
of God. Peter and John encountered a lame man on their way to temple. Using
only the name of Jesus they healed the man and they gained credibility because
they did what they said, “they walked the talk.” As their credibility grew so
did the church. Note how Acts 3 (Acts 3:1-26) describes these leaders:
did what they knew to do.
2.They stopped and sensitively addressed needs.
3.They had courage to face problems.
4.Others anticipated receiving solutions from them.
5.They realistically admitted their lack of material
6.They generously gave away their spiritual resources.
7.They solved practical problems.
8.They gained credibility through demonstration, not just
9.Peter’s demonstration gave him a platform and a
pray for the soul of a great priest and friend of mine who I had the pleasure
of knowing while stationed in Belgium-Father Paul Wolff. Paul was General
Patton’s guide during the “Battle of the Bulge” while he was still a teen. Paul
introduced me to St. Hubert and I would like to introduce you to this priest
and national hero over the next few blog entries; more to come.
Late in the eighth century, so runs the story, a hunter
named Hubert, neither better nor worse than he should have been, was tracking a
stag through the forest of the Ardennes. As he readied himself to shoot the
animal with his arrow, he was startled when the stag turned suddenly in its
flight, and he saw between its antlers a luminous cross. This experience caused
Hubert to change his way of life, and he never hunted again. Yet only a few
centuries later he was known as the patron of hunters, and is a saint greatly
honored in France and Belgium.
Hubert lived a full life. He became bishop of Tongres and traveled through his
huge diocese on horseback and by boat, preaching and building churches to the
glory of God. He was the friend of the great of his day — Pepin of Heristal and
Charles Martel among them — and also of the poor. In particular his heart went
out to prisoners, and he would secretly place food for them before their
dungeon windows. As he died he said to those about him, "Stretch the
pallium over my mouth for I am now going to give back to God the soul I
received from Him."
parts of France and Belgium there has long been a custom of holding stag hunts
on Saint Hubert's Day, and the hunters gather before the chase for Mass and the
blessing of men and horses and dogs. After the hunt is over, those taking part
gather for a bountiful breakfast consisting of fish, meat, salad, cheese, and
dessert. Naturally the meat is venison of some sort, and the salad may well be
one of dandelion greens.
The Dogma of Purgatory is too much forgotten by the majority of
the faithful; the Church Suffering, where they have so many brethren to succor,
whither they foresee that they themselves must
one day go, seems a strange land to them. This truly deplorable forgetfulness
was a great sorrow to St. Francis de Sales. “Alas!” said this pious doctor of
the Church, “we do not sufficiently remember our dear departed; their memory
seems to perish with the sound of the funeral bells.” The principal causes of
this are ignorance and lack of faith;
our notions on the subject of Purgatory are too vague, our faith is too feeble. In order, then, that our ideas may become more
distinct and our faith enlivened, we
must take a closer view of this life
beyond the tomb, this intermediate state of the just souls, not yet worthy to
enter the Heavenly Jerusalem.