chastity formula

Monday, April 28, 2014

I don't want to be the best!

Last week I had a beautiful moment with a younger friend. He was struggling with the girlfriend and with no shame started to shed tears in my presence. Since we were with other persons I didn't want to draw more attention to him for he was already embarrassed. His friend said something about him and tears, seems my dear young friend is very sensitive in a world where a crying man is seen as weakness.

Next day I wrote him a note, trying to give him some support and telling him how special, unique and wonderful person he is. I actually felt like exchanging hearts that moment so his pain wouldn't affect him. Yes by Grace I was willing to suffer his tears and broken heart. This is a complete new feeling of empathy in my life. I wanted to absorb his suffering so that he may have the Joy of Christ I feel. Since not much else could be done (physically), I started to pray for him, for the girlfriend, that they may TALK and start understanding each other, with respect and patience.

After I wrote him, I had a reply. His words moved me. He said I was the best, that he appreciated my kind words and how free he felt talking to me about his issues. We have a gap of 19 years, so sometimes I recognize feelings, reactions I used to have when I was his age. His sensibility and sort of being naive remind me that I was once fragile like him. I'm not a cold person, thank God, but those features have been changed in Christ's love for better. 

But those words..."you are the best", kept on banging in my head. That same day I started to think about our new 2PopeSaints (a day before their canonization). And then while I was in Adoration, the complementary thought to his words hit me: I don't want to be just the "best"..... 

And this was not just my head proclaiming this, but my heart and soul united! 

Indeed priests and nuns are a POWERFUL sign that reminds us all the time about our future life, and Saint John Paul II and Saint John XXIII are a clear example that it is not impossible if we let God work on us. Blessed Mother Teresa was clear and these words always stay with me ever since I read them: "We are all called to be SAINTS".

In TOB words, we need to be READY for UNION and COMMUNION with God!. So even if I don't become an official one, I want to die trying to become one. Yes, now my whole existence has realized that I want to make my best effort to become a saint. What a wonderful work God does with us when we allow Him to do His Will. 

“God creates out of nothing. Wonderful you say. Yes, to be sure, but he does what is still more wonderful: he makes saints out of sinners.” ― Søren Kierkegaard, The Journals of Kierkegaard

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Top list of Priests

It is Holy Thursday 2014. It is a sunny day in La Paz, Bolivia and by now most Chrism Mass celebrations are taking place right now. I was reading a post by one of my acquaintances, where he was greeting all GOOD Priests and bluntly criticizing those who need to work on their vocation and minister. 

Honestly I find this disgusting. We are prone to see the splint in our brother's eye, but we never realize the log in ours. More so we say "Do not judge", yet we stone these men who have set a distance between their vocation and the way they act. 

When I was younger I was very much like that. I was very much like that until a year or so. The challenge came with Fr. José María from my local parish. This man found much delight in giving his homily and then collecting applause. The bad point aside from the applause? The fact that his homily was a rhetorical speech about values in our society and almost never he would address what we had listened in scripture. I was literally BORED. Eventually we stopped going there, and would rather take extra 10 to 15 minutes and attend another parish. Some how in one of the other homilies that I was able to listen the challenge came....PRAY FOR HIM!

I know I don't pray that often for him, but to my surprise a Sunday that I was running late I had to attend the celebration he was proceeding. To my surprise and rejoice he was asking people not to clap after his homily. ONE STEP ahead! Fast forward after ash Wednesday I attended a Friday mass again with him. For some months I've been called to kneel for Communion. This time with him, I was denied to receive Communion on my knees. Quite frankly, it almost seemed the priest thought I was kneeling for him!!!!! Gladly God granted me Grace to stop complaining right away and realize how much more prayer and penance he needs.

Once when I was talking to Sr. Martin (my spiritual sister MC), I told her that I had a top list of priests who had lead me to LOVE more and whose teaching is really a treasure. It is really easy to keep them on my prayer all the time. So now I'm trading lists. Well not really trading but expanding it and putting in the first places those priests I know that need more prayer and penance. After all if the #1 has my Bishop, then it is really an emergency for La Paz Archdiocese. 

May God touch their hearts, so they will burn again with the fire of Christ, so that they will again, lay down their lives for the Bride of Christ. 

(BTW, if you want to know who are my top priests, know they include our two Popes, Fr. Cantalamessa, Fr. Muir, Fr. Di Quatro, Fr. Eleuterio, Fr. Lino, Fr. Clements, Fr. Auñion, Fr. Rastislav. God keep blessing them.)