Friday, August 5, 2022

 


First Friday

INTERNATIONAL BEER DAY

 

Luke, Chapter 12, Verse 7

Even the hairs of your head have all been counted. Do not be AFRAID. You are worth more than many sparrows.

 

When I read this passage, I get the idea that I indeed must be the least of those in the Kingdom of God. I as a young man had handsome strawberry blond hair and I gained the attention of many a young lady. Yet, as time went on it all fell out. At first, I rebuked: No, I will not take this, and I used various elixirs in an attempt to keep the hair. As it thinned, I did the comb over and then one day I said screw it and shaved my head. Vanity all is vanity.

 

As life went on the challenges of everyday life, I lost more than my hair and every day I struggled to retain the joy of life against insurmountable odds in which I lost more than my hair. (Divorce, single parenthood, angry children, unemployment, bankruptcy, sickness) Bravely I continued but ever so slowly I found my joy of life was falling out and anger was replacing it. Yet, by the grace of God: I still trust in Him and trusting in Him I find my anger replaced with resolve to do His will.

 

The patient man finds a cleansing purgatory in this earthly life. When others wrong him, he is sorrier that evil is done than that he has been wronged. He forgives the evildoer from the bottom of his heart. He is not slow to ask pardon when he himself has hurt others. He is more easily moved to pity than to anger. He frequently disregards his feelings and tries to live above them, according to his intelligence and God’s grace.[1]

 

MEDITATIONS FOR THE FIRST FRIDAY OF THE MONTH.

 

At the hour of our death, when life, like a false friend, is about to forsake us, we must, in a special manner, increase our confidence in the Heart of Jesus. It is said that Our Lord appeared one day to a holy soul who had conjured Him to grant to a pious person a happy passage from this life, and addressed to her these consoling words:

 

(My daughter, where is the pilot who, having brought into port a vessel laden with precious stones, sinks it in the sea at the moment of his arrival? Can you suppose that, after having granted so many graces to this soul in the course of her life, I shall abandon her at the end thereof? 

 

Let us lean on the heart of Jesus; and driven on the stormy sea of this world, under the protection which He grants to those who love Him, we shall one day triumphantly enter the desired port, and enjoy the eternal blessings of that holy guidance. Death was always precious in the sight of God, for Jesus was to pass through its portal; it is precious to Him still, for Jesus has died. No one who is devout to the heart of Jesus will fail to find at the moment of his death more excellent and abundant treasures than he had ever expected to receive. Death, precious to Himself, will not Our Lord render it also inexpressibly so to us?

 

Faith cannot mistake the proofs of His tenderness. If we may venture to say so, the exile of the being He created is a sorrow to Him as much as to the soul itself; for, like a tender father, God desires that His children should be with Him in His kingdom. Of all the hours of life this is the one which is the most precious in the sight of God, exerts the greatest power over His love, and for this very reason has such a mighty influence over His mercy and justice. In order to receive the fulness of the new life to be merited by repentance through the divine reparation every man must undergo the terrible suffering of death; but is not this suffering, caused by sin, like all other trials, a token of love on the part of God?

 

Without death life could not attain to its end; without death how could the soul ever reach eternal life? The rebel angel escaped the sentence of death, but for him there was no resurrection. It is decreed that man should die, or, rather, the soul, cleansed by the blood of Our Lord, and vivified by His love, passes into eternity before the body which it shall one day glorify; united together they are called by Jesus to reign in heaven in a state so exalted that it could not have been won by primeval innocence.

 

Even in this world, without awaiting the eternal glorifying of humanity, the most beloved amongst the friends of God experience through their whole being a marvelous transformation which robs death of its terrors, and wholly disengages them from this transitory world. The interior light by which they are led is no longer human, but divine, through Jesus; and a supernatural love is substituted for that natural love which they made their law; and not only are their criminal affections destroyed, but the love of God above all things gives them, even in this life, a foretaste of heaven. They feel no longer an engrossing care for the preservation of the body, but sigh after death, crying incessantly to God, with St. Paul, " I desire to be dissolved, and to be with Christ. They exult when they hear the clock strike, at the thought that one hour less remains for them to pass in this exile; death is no longer a passage of sorrow, but the desired way by which they shall go to the Lord; they sigh after it, they desire it, and would fain hasten the moment of its approach by the ardor of their desire for the enjoyment of a never-ending eternity. One single thing restrains them: it is when the perfection of love imposes on them a law of charity yet stronger, which would detain them in this world for the glory of God and the good of their brethren; "for," says St. Teresa, "thus do souls arrive at a strict union with Jesus."

 

Thus ardently they have desired to die in order to enjoy the presence of Our Lord; this is their martyrdom that their exile is prolonged; yet they are so inflamed with the desire of knowing Him, of making His name hallowed, of being useful to the souls of others, that far from sighing after death they would wish to live for many years, even amidst the greatest sufferings, too happy in being able to add to the glory of their divine Master.

 

Perfect submission in death is an act of entire adoration, a magnificent profession of faith and praise; its beauty consists in the cheerful and ready sacrifice which the creature makes to the Creator of the life which He had given, shadowing forth God’s power in all its grandeur. Death beholds the soul already in adoration annihilated at the thought of the near approach of eternity; this, we may well imagine, is the kind of death the angels love to contemplate. The soul takes to itself no merit, places no trust on the way in which it has served God, and de sires to possess even the smallest consolation the Church can be stow. It is specially attracted by the sanctity of God, which makes it aspire to become pure, pure almost beyond conception, in order to appear before the inviolable majesty of God; relying only on His mercy; never losing its confidence in the greatness of the divine compassion, but fearing lest its offences may be beyond the reach of pardon; dying the death of a child, with its eyes fixed on the countenance of its tender Father. Why, then, when in a state of grace, should we entertain a fear of death?

 

"Whosoever dwelleth in love, dwelleth in God, and God abides in him." He who loves God is then sure of His grace, and dying in this state is certain of enjoying forever the sovereign good in the habitations of the elect. And can such a one fear death?

 

David has, however, said that no living man is entirely pure in the sight of God. Thus no one should have the presumption to hope for salvation through his own merits; for, except Jesus and Mary, no one was ever exempt from sin. But we need not fear death when we have a true sorrow for our faults, and place our confidence in the merits of Jesus, Who came on this earth in order to redeem and save sinners, for whom He shed His blood, for whom He died. The blood of Jesus Christ," says the Apostle, cries more loudly in favor of sinners than the blood of Abel for vengeance against Cain."

 

Grace transforms into a brilliant light that which by its nature was plunged in darkness and obscurity, and the plaintive cry of our misery is changed into a song of triumph; for the fetters which yet separate the soul of the dying from the heavenly Jerusalem are so near being severed asunder that the triumphant alleluias of heaven mingle with the lamentations of earth, and the last gaze of repentant love is tenderly fixed on the crucifix till earth fades from view. The transit of the creature from time to eternity is dear to the Creator; for precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.

 

"Let us throw aside, then, those vain fears of death, and regard it as a tribute which all must pay to nature. Let us be ready cheerfully to leave this world when Our Lord shall call us to the land where the saints await us, and where we shall meet those who have instructed us in the faith, and whose victory will in some measure supply for the negligence with which we have performed our own duties toward our heavenly Father. Let us unite ourselves to those glorious troops of blessed spirits who are seated in the kingdom of God with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; into which the good thief entered in triumph after a life of sin, and now enjoys, in the company of the elect, the ineffable delights of paradise; where there is no darkness nor storms, no intense heat, excessive cold, sickness, or sorrow; and where there is no need of the light of the sun, because the Sun of justice alone enlightens the heavenly Jerusalem.

 

We read the following touching account in the life of St. Gertrude: The saint once heard a preacher insist strongly on the strict obligation of a dying person to love God above all things, and to entertain for his sins a contrition founded on love. She believed this to be an exaggerated doctrine, and that if pure love was necessary very few persons would die in the proper dispositions. She became interiorly disturbed, and a cloud obscured her mind; but Our Lord Himself vouchsafed to dispel her fears, telling her " that in the last struggle, if the dying person had during life sought to please Him, and to lead a Christian life, He would so mercifully reveal Himself that His love would penetrate into the inmost folding’s of the heart, causing it by His presence to make acts of the most perfect contrition"; and, added Our Lord, " I would have My elect to know with what a great desire I wish them to be united to Me at that important moment. Let this be made known, so that men may rely no less on this last merciful grace than on all the others which My love has lavished upon them." Let us propagate this consoling truth, so well calculated to inflame our hearts with the most lively love for so merciful a God.

 

Practice.

 

Let us pray to the agonizing heart of Jesus for the one hundred fifty thousand persons who, it is computed, die daily in this world.

 

EJACULATORY PRAYER.

 

O sweet Jesus! grant that I may die the death of those devoted to Thy divine heart.

 

[His Holiness Pius IX., by a brief dated 29th September, 1859, granted an indulgence of three hundred days, extended afterwards by a new re script to three years, and a plenary indulgence once a month, on the usual conditions, to the recital of the following prayers. They are applicable to the faithful departed. Intentions to be made during Mass, either at the offertory, immediately after the consecration, or at the communion of the priest.]

 

Eternal Father, I offer to Thee the sacrifice which Thy divine Son made of Himself on the cross, which sacrifice He now renews on our altars. I offer it in the name of all mankind, with the Masses which are now being celebrated, and which will be celebrated throughout the world, in order to adore Thee and render Thee all possible honor and glory; to thank Thee for Thy innumerable benefits; to appease Thy justice, provoked by our sins; to give Thee the satisfaction Thou dost expect, also to obtain grace for myself, for Thy Church, and for the whole world, as also for the souls in purgatory. O Lord, I offer Thee the Masses which are being said throughout the world, in the name of all mankind, for Thy glory and the salvation and benefit of Thy creatures. O Lord, I desire to offer up myself to Thee for all the intentions for which Thou now offerest Thyself to God Thy Father. 

International Beer Day[2] another hedonistic holiday but even the saint enjoyed a beer-check out “Pints with Aquinas”. International Beer Day celebrates the taste of beer and the achievement of beer brewers. Beer is an ancient alcoholic drink brewed mainly from malted barley, hops, yeast and water although it is possible to brew it from other grains such as maize, wheat and rice. Records of beer date back to 4000 BC, making it one of the oldest alcoholic beverages in the world. The three stated goals of the International Beer Day are to: appreciate brewers and servers, enjoy the taste of all beers from around the world, and to unite the world under the banner of beer.  Founded in 2007 by the Association of California Brewers, International Beer Day has become an international event that is observed in more than 50 countries worldwide.  It is held annually on the first Friday of August. 

International Beer Day Facts & Quotes

 

·       International Beer Day began in Santa Cruz, California, 2007.  It was founded by beer enthusiasts, Jesse Avshalomov and Evan Hamilton.

·       As far back as ancient Egypt, beer was a staple food.  Known as Hqt, heqet or heket, beer was a thick and sweet source of nutrition including vitamins, minerals and protein that was consumed daily by adults and children.

·       On average, a can of beer contains 100-150 calories and 10-15g carbohydrates.

·       I work until beer o'clock - Stephen King

 

International Beer Day Top Events and Things to Do

 

·       Visit your local watering hole and try a new beer that you have never had.

·       Attend a beer festival to taste beer from around the world and learn more about brewing and craft beers.  

·       Visit a local craft brewery in your state.

Try a Orval beer or a Chimay.


 

Fitness Friday

Flipping the Switches of Manliness[3]

The solution for the modern male malaise lies at the heart of the idea behind the Art of Manliness itself: to move forward by looking back.

The solution means moving beyond the all-or-nothing proposition we sometimes feel we are stuck with. Men feel like they cannot fully embrace the old ways nor move into the new ways, and so they decide to do nothing at all. But it doesn’t have to be an all or nothing proposition. You don’t have to become a sensitive ponytail guy OR a Neanderthal.

Something that has helped me lately is picturing those unique primordial male characteristics as power switches that are either on or off. When these switches are turned on, they activate our Wild Man. Talked about in books like Iron John and Wild at Heart, and here on AoM, the Wild Man is the spirited, primal part of a man’s soul.

And the thing I’ve discovered is that you can activate your Wild Man by doing things far short of running down a herd of antelope for your dinner. You can take the parts of masculinity that have been an integral part of manliness for thousands of years and make sure some semblance of them are operating in your life. Not to the extent that they were manifested in the lives of primitive man, but active nonetheless.  Sometimes we don’t move forward in our life because we think the solution to our problem must be complicated and arduous to be effective. But the switches of manliness can be turned on in surprisingly small and simple ways.

What are the switches of manliness?


I know it’s debatable, and everyone is going to have their opinion as to what they are, but I personally believe that there are five switches that every man must turn on in order to power his spiritedness and flip on the motivation that allows him to reach his full potential:

One wonders if these are also be used as switches to turn a sinful man to a saint.

Over the next several weeks, we’ll be exploring each of the these switches, both the sociology and biology behind them, but also the practical ways to flip the switches in your life so you can rein in your restlessness, activate your manliness, and cure the modern male malaise you might be feeling.

Switches of Manliness Series:
The Cure for the Modern Male Malaise
Switch #1: Physicality
Switch #2: Challenge
Switch #3: Legacy
Switch #4: Provide
Switch #5: Nature

 

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PART TWO: THE CELEBRATION OF THE CHRISTIAN MYSTERY

SECTION TWO-THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH

CHAPTER ONE-THE SACRAMENTS OF CHRISTIAN INITIATION

Article 3 THE SACRAMENT OF THE EUCHARIST

II. What is This Sacrament Called?

1328 The inexhaustible richness of this sacrament is expressed in the different names we give it. Each name evokes certain aspects of it. It is called: Eucharist, because it is an action of thanksgiving to God. the Greek words eucharistein and eulogein recall the Jewish blessings that proclaim - especially during a meal - God's works: creation, redemption, and sanctification.

1329 The Lord's Supper, because of its connection with the supper which the Lord took with his disciples on the eve of his Passion and because it anticipates the wedding feast of the Lamb in the heavenly Jerusalem.

The Breaking of Bread, because Jesus used this rite, part of a Jewish meat when as master of the table he blessed and distributed the bread, above all at the Last Supper. It is by this action that his disciples will recognize him after his Resurrection, and it is this expression that the first Christians will use to designate their Eucharistic assemblies; by doing so they signified that all who eat the one broken bread, Christ, enter into communion with him and form but one body in him.

The Eucharistic assembly (synaxis), because the Eucharist is celebrated amid the assembly of the faithful, the visible expression of the Church.

1330 The memorial of the Lord's Passion and Resurrection.
The Holy Sacrifice, because it makes present the one sacrifice of Christ the Savior and includes the Church's offering. the terms holy sacrifice of the Mass, "sacrifice of praise," spiritual sacrifice, pure and holy sacrifice are also used, since it completes and surpasses all the sacrifices of the Old Covenant.


The Holy and Divine Liturgy, because the Church's whole liturgy finds its center and most intense expression in the celebration of this sacrament; in the same sense we also call its celebration the Sacred Mysteries. We speak of the Most Blessed Sacrament because it is the Sacrament of sacraments. the Eucharistic species reserved in the tabernacle are designated by this same name.

1331 Holy Communion, because by this sacrament we unite ourselves to Christ, who makes us sharers in his Body and Blood to form a single body. We also call it: the holy things (ta hagia; sancta) - the first meaning of the phrase "communion of saints" in the Apostles' Creed - the bread of angels, bread from heaven, medicine of immortality, viaticum....

1332 Holy Mass (Missa), because the liturgy in which the mystery of salvation is accomplished concludes with the sending forth (missio) of the faithful, so that they may fulfill God's will in their daily lives.

Daily Devotions

·       Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: True Masculinity

·       Religion in the Home for Preschool: August

·       Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       Let Freedom Ring Day 29

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Rosary




[1] Paone, Anthony J., Our Daily Bread, 1954.

[3]https://www.artofmanliness.com/character/behavior/the-cure-for-the-modern-male-malaise-the-5-switches-of-manliness/




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