My wife Annette observed an 8-year-old boy in a waiting room trying to make sense of a photo in People magazine of two men in tuxes, probably a feature on some celeb ‘gay wedding.’ Wide-eyed, and too truthful to have anything but a visceral response to the madness, he said: ‘Are those guys… you know, together? That’s real scary.’ No scarier than the wedding photo in front of me of two men, 20-years apart yet mirror images of each other, with their adopted 4-year-old daughter
Jesus’ humiliation has been eclipsed with glory. So is ours, as we testify of how His mercy has washed us and solidified the new creation. Over lunch the other day, a friend recounted his healing story. To do so, he began with his shame, which was founded upon a history of early childhood sexual abuse. Staggering into young adulthood with same-sex attraction, he sought the help of two pastors who abused him sexually and spiritually. He vowed to trust no-one. Yet he knew Jesus
— Intimate Authority: Holy Week Meditation, 2 Luke 7: 36-50 introduces us to Mary Magdalene. Mercy drew her out of fear and shame, and compelled her to offer herself to Him. Jesus embodied that Mercy for a prostitute. Imagine that: a kind, strong, handsome man who only wanted her good, nothing from her but her dignity. And a holy man who did not fear her and the entanglement of desires she lay at His feet. She wept and lingered there. His Mercy was magnetic, a good match for
— Merciful Eyes
40 Days of Mercy Devotional – Lent 2012 – Day 38 To see the image of God in every sister—all love of neighbor must flow from this motive. (861)
May I never boast except in the Cross of the Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world…what counts is a new creation. Peace and Mercy to all who follow this rule. (Gal. 6: 14-16) Jesus, grant us merciful sight for the lost and deeply loved. Anchor our sight in the truth of
Creation of Adam and Eve, stained glass window in the church of Dinant, Belgium, created in 1821. A federal appeal court ruled yesterdaythat Prop. 8–our voter-approved definition of real marriage–violated the US Constitution. Fear not: this is but the latest of numerous efforts to overturn the people’s will concerning marriage. Tuesday’s decision will be appealed and most likely ‘fast tracked’ to the US Supreme Court who will decide once and for all the definition of marriage
— Merciful Eyes ‘To see the image of God in every sister—all love of neighbor must flow from this motive.’ (861) How we see others must be anchored in how God sees them. ‘To love a person means to see him as God intends him to be,’ in the words of Dostoevsky. Above all else, God wants us to walk in the dignity of bearing His image and likeness. That means all men and women represent Him in their humanity; such a high call distinguishes us from the rest of creation. Sin may ha
— Mercy for Minors ‘Truth wears a crown of thorns.’ (1103) Jesus instructed St. Faustina: ‘Pray to defend the souls of children against the spirit of evil.’ (1156) That’s why we fight for marriage—one man committed to one woman. For the sake of the children conceived there, we vie for the integrity and clarity of marriage. Little ones have no vote in the battle to redefine marriage. They have no voice to speak out the shame visited upon them by two moms or dads. Children are
— ‘I Myself am fighting for them!’ (1516) Two streams of mercy converge in our God: His masculine, steadfast love which keeps covenant with us (hesed), and the deeply felt and tenderly expressed love that issues from His depths, as from the womb of a mother (rachamim). Truly we have a merciful Father whose love surpasses that of the most devoted parents! And like good parents, our Father expresses His mercy by battling for our best; He wars for our well-being. Knit in the wom
‘He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him.’ (Mk 16:6) Resurrection is reunion: Jesus, torn from His Father, now returns to Him. Evil demanded payment: crucifixion, the vast distance between God and God.
Love crossed over that gap, conquering sin and death. Resurrection is the ultimate Father/Son reunion. Every Easter, God extends to us a fresh invitation to reenter that reunion.
Jesus descended into hell to get us out of there.
He rose again into perf
‘But I cry to you for help, O Lord; in the morning my prayer comes before you.
Why, O Lord, do you reject me and hide your face from me?
I have suffered your terrors and am in despair. Your wrath has swept over me;
Your terrors have destroyed me. All day long they surround me like a flood;
They have completely engulfed me.
You have taken my companions from me; the darkness is my closest friend.’
PS 88:13-18 Jesus’ rejection, abuse, and murder at the hands of men were not His
While doing a conference in Denver many years ago, a vigorous young man introduced himself to me as Christopher West; he was then the ‘marriage and family’ guy for the Archdiocese of Denver. He loved our emphases on healing through the cross and community. And he wanted me to have a copy of John Paul II’s book: The Theology of the Body, the late great pope’s sweeping take on human sexuality. Wow. What a meal. For the next couple of years I slowly ate what I now regard as perh
Femininity needs masculinity. Woman needs man. Her softness and depth not only invites intimacy; woman possesses a marvelous capacity to nurture relationship. Therein lies the paradox of woman—powerful in love yet equally powerful in her vulnerability to be wounded in those relationships. Woman is a deep well. She needs man’s help to guard the waters, to keep them clear and free. And to help ensure that the gift of that water finds rich expression. Secure in the blessing of m
Gender matters in marriage. As we saw yesterday, the distinctly masculine and feminine dimensions of marriage reveal something about God to us, His very image revealed on the earth. Let us explore this further. Marriage involves the joining together of two distinctive parts: male and female. Wholeness requires ‘otherness. The oneness of body, soul, and spirit that marriage embodies requires essential maleness and femaleness. There is no one-flesh union apart from the two gend