The past two weeks have been very stressful for the Faithful. Cardinal O'Brien of the UK has resigned, Cardinal Mahoney is being deposed, the Pope is leaving....all in all the Holy Spirit has grabbed hold of the shoulders of the Bride of Christ and given her a really good SHAKE. As a result, a lot of the dust and dead weight has fallen from her shoulders. As a result, the beauty of her garments are being revealed.
Once in awhile, everyone needs a good shake.
I have expressed to several people that I am overwhelmed with the feeling of standing on the cusp of a HUGE historical moment. There have been few times I have felt this way - the attack on our country on September 11, 2001 was one such moment. The assassination of JFK was one. The moon landing, and the election of Barack Obama were two incredible historically significant moments in time and I have been witness to all.
Yet all those, and the others, that I have seen pale in comparison to the Papal Election that is about to happen. Why? Because the Bishop of Rome is the Vicar of Christ and even those who are not Catholic look to the Catholic Church for answers during times of trouble. If we were not regarded as The Authority, do you really think anyone would care about allegations that 10 or 20 priests engaged in homosexual orgies? Why do you think people care? BECAUSE the people accused are CATHOLIC priests. No one gives a damn when Episcopalens act up.
The world is faced with unbelievable challenges. We are technologically advanced and yet unable to feed the people on the planet or get medicine to those who need it or even agree, as a race, that all of us should be educated no matter our gender or race. We can get on an airplane and be in another country in a matter of hours and yet we cannot seem to find a way to speak to one another without brandishing a weapon and threatening the listener with annihilation. We are looking at putting women into combat units in our armed forces while a young woman cannot ride the bus in India without having a group of men surround her and rape her with an iron pipe because she dared to do so without a 'proper' male companion.
I know that every country has a leader and every country has an agenda but The Church has a role that is far different from that of a country or a political body. Our woes of the past few decades is due to our hierarchy behaving with eyes on the secular world, not on Christ. We began to return to that which we do best under the guidance of JPII and B16. It is why the scandals emerged - both these men were mighty spiritual warriors and more than willing and more than able to weather the horrors of abuse that unfolded before the world. They had the courage to stand fast while the world threw every rock and stone it could find at us, while Satan laughed and laughed at the number of people who walked away from The Eucharist for the dumbest of reasons - because sinful men acted like sinful men.
What the news media won't tell you is that entire countries and communities are starting to convert - East Timor, once a bastion of Islamic beliefs is not almost 98% Catholic. Yes, it is a tiny country but it is fighting for its right to exist because it refuses to bow before a heretical belief in God. Anglican Communities, tired of having to vote to stay true to Christian theology, are humbly asking to come Home to Rome. Women, tired of being lied to by the secular culture and defined by their genitals, are turning to lives of quiet contemplation and prayer in record numbers, filling the houses of those once scorned as 'too Catholic' or 'too conservative'.
I am quietly and wildly excited to see how the Holy Spirit will guide the cardinals. I am praying for a young, strong, vibrant and exciting Bishop of Rome - the type necessary to lead us into the storm and confidently remind us of the words of Jesus Christ.
BE NOT AFRAID!
I'm not - are you?