Monday, September 30, 2013

Must hear homily: "Walk in a manner worthy of your calling"

Post updated with audio-link

There is a 17 minute sermon that anyone engaged in social media should hear, regardless of whether you go to the ordinary or extraordinary form. It happens to be a priest talking to people in an TLM, but what he has to say is simply Catholic.  We all need to hear this today.  In fact, before you make another entry in a comment box or social media, listen to this sermon.

The priest reflects on some words by Pope St. Leo the Great's 8th Sermon, on the Lord's Passion.  It was preached on September 15, 2013 according to the site, but is in the 7th reading from Matins in the older breviary on the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, which is September 14th.  Here is the text he quotes at the beginning.

"...when we gaze upon Christ lifted up upon the Cross, the eyes of our mind see more than that which appeared before the wicked, unto whom it was said through Moses: And thy life shall hang in doubt before thee, and thou shalt fear day and night, and shalt have none assurance of thy life. Deut. xxviik 66. They saw in the crucified Lord nothing but the work of their own wickedness, and they feared greatly, Matth. xxvii. 54, not with that faith which giveth earnest of life by justification, but with that whereby the evil conscience is tortured. But our understanding is enlightened by the Spirit of truth, and with pure and open hearts we see the glory of the Cross shining over heaven and earth..."

Link to full 17 minute sermon:

Some thoughts

The sermon will have the virtuous looking inward in a big way.

He talks a lot about looking at the faults of others and how we talk about them, thus the title that admonishes us to walk in a manner worthy of our calling.

All that I have been saying in my recent posts about the importance of the face we put on Catholicism in general, or on traditionalism is packaged neatly in this 17 minute sermon.  When I say that how we Catholics interact with each other, as others see us, is very important, this priest helps us to understand it all in a very Catholic way.

It's clear he is addressing a TLM crowd, perhaps about things that may be more dominant within this sub-culture. It's certainly my experience.  However, there is little doubt in my mind that what he says also applies to non-TLM people who talk about the imperfections of traditionalists with the same sort of ugliness they despise among members of the group they target for criticism.

I myself have been overly harsh at times, in my discussion with others, about problems within the "fringe" of the various kinds of traditional communities.  I think it may be the same kind of anger that Jesus had with the pharisees.  We tend to be less willing to bear with the imperfections of others if they themselves are harsh in their treatment of people.

That is why I refuse to link to certain forms of Catholic media, that may be well and good in other ways, but so caustic that in my humble opinion, it is very damaging to the mission of the Church.  It does not do it's damage by heresy or error, but through lack of charity and malevolent nature.   It is abusive and not led by love, but by scorn and spite.  At it's root is a form of bitterness that arises when open wounds are allowed by the individual to fester.  There's nothing in harmony with the Gospel that would allow us to dwell in things that have caused us pain.  Jesus had more reasons to dwell the suffering that came at the hands of each and every one of us, but that is not what he taught us.

So, I ask you all, regardless of whether you go to the EF, OF, or one of the many other rites, to listen carefully to this exceptional homily.

I think other priests and seminarians can also benefit from hearing how this one dealt with a common problem today, that is in no way exclusive to TLM communities.

About Audio Sancto

Last week I discussed the website, in my post on fraternal correction when I shared a very good sermon on the subject.  It might be good to see that note half way down that post.

* Picture at top from a scene in the movie, Passion of Christ

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