The Fighting Church, the Attacks of Satan, and the Laity

07-30-2023Weekly Reflection

The pivotal meditation in the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola is called “The Two Standards.” Fr. Ambruzzi1 comments: Satan summons together innumerable devils and spurs them to go, someone to city, some to another, throughout the world, omitting no province, place or state of life, nor any person in particular. His attack is universal. St. Ignatius is the last man to attribute all temptations to the devil. Still the fact remains, and the Saint strongly emphasizes it, that Satan is constantly at our side, as the embodiment of evil, bent on organizing the attacks of the world and the flesh against us, and on undoing God’s work in our souls. …(T)he Son of Man is manifested, that He might undo the works of the devil. 1 John iii, 8. See Ephesians 6: 11-171 Fr Aloysius Ambruzzi S.J., Companion to the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius


Real Life, Its Enemy, and the Mass

07-23-2023Weekly Reflection

Real life is the interior life of the Christian whereby an adopted son/daughter, lives in intimacy with God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This is called being in the state of grace. I have come that they may have life and have it to the full. John 10:10

1997 Grace is a participation in the life of God. It introduces us into the intimacy of Trinitarian life: by Baptism the Christian participates in the grace of Christ, the Head of his Body. As an "adopted son" he can henceforth call God "Father," in union with the only Son. He receives the life of the Spirit who breathes charity into him and who forms the Church.


Amusing the Self to Death…..

07-16-2023Weekly Reflection

... long ago, we sold our vote to no man, now the People who once upon a time handed out military command, high civil office, legions — everything, sheds its cares, and anxiously hopes for just two things: bread and circuses * —Juvenal, Satire 10.77–81

God created man and woman to praise, reverence, and serve God, and by doing this, to save their souls. God created all other things on the face of the earth to help fulfill this purpose. From this it follows that we are to use the things of this world only to the extent that they help us to this end, and we ought to rid ourselves of the things of this world to the extent that they get in the way of this end. St. Ignatius Loyola, The Spiritual Exercises


The Alien Presence

07-09-2023Weekly Reflection

The drama of the Faith has exorcisms against Satan a reminder of the Lord’s battle with the Evil One culminating in the Lord’s victory over Satan through His Passion, Death, and Resurrection. To this end was the Son of God manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. 1John 3:8 The Church in each age shares in the Passion of the Lord particularly in her struggle with the Evil One. A particular manifestation of Satan is infidelity. St. John refers to those who go from the Church and deny Christ as antichrists. St. Paul refers to his struggles with “false brethren.”


Old hatreds of the Church alive and well in Paris

07-02-2023Weekly Reflection

We don't live in a carefree society. Our lives are really part of a merciless struggle against infernal powers, all the more dangerous because they are invisible and all the more powerful because they effectively influence a certain number of people. The Word of God teaches us this through the mouth of Saint Paul: "We do not have to fight (only) against flesh and blood, but against the rulers of this dark world, against the evil spirits that are in the air" (Eph. 6:12).

NOTE: One of the signs of this is where Christ’s Name is attacked with conscious rebellious hatred. The recent beatification of five martyrs of the Commune is a timely reminder of this reality. On Holy Thursday 6 April 1871, Henri Planchat was the first to be imprisoned. Many other faithful Catholics followed. For some, it was the beginning of a real ordeal. One of the revolutionaries' hostages, Archbishop Darboy, summed up the situation for one of his companions in these words: "They don't want to kill us because I'm Archbishop Darboy and you're Mgr Soand-so, but because I'm the Archbishop of Paris and you're one of my priests".