Tag Archives: humility

In Nomine Patris

A blessed Father’s Day to all the dads out there!

My Father’s Day was a blast. Started the day with early mass. Got a seat right up front with my wife and kids. My daughter made me breakfast. We went swimming. I grilled. My wife and kids gave me the most amazing gifts. I am truly thankful.

And I am thankful for something even more. I am thankful to God for sharing the gift of His Paternity with me. In making me a father, He placed it upon me to be the man who will teach my family about Him. He tasked me with representing Him to them. My children will come to know God through me if I do a good job. No pressure there. Half the time I can’t find my car keys but I am thankful. And humbled.

Speaking of Humility

After the merriment of today, celebrating with my offspring that I offsprung them, I get to take part in what has become one of the great joys of my life. My mother-in-law reminded me that our parish began a week of Adoration tonight. Everyone was pretty much in bed when I grabbed my keys (I did find them!) and headed towards the front door. My teenage son popped out of his room.

“Where are you going, Dad?” he asked.

“Adoration,” I replied.

“I’ll come with.”

No arguments here. On the drive I had a chat with him. He was a little vexed about his sister going out to breakfast in the morning with my sister who’s visiting us. He won’t be able to join due to a prior commitment. But who doesn’t enjoy a breakfast outing?

“I wouldn’t worry about it, son,” I said. “You get to do something far more wonderful.” Then I reminded him where we were going. “Our Lord is waiting right now for us. He knew that we would come to see Him. He’s known it since before there was a time to be remembered.” I thought about the gospel this morning. A man held a great feast and invited many. Everyone made excuses. Then he sent for the poor and lame. They came but still there was room. “Go into the highways and hedges and bring in those who are there!” he ordered.

Shrine of the Miraculous Medal, St. Catherine Laboure Church, Harrisburg, PA

Until recently I was the one who made excuses about Adoration. I need my rest. I have things to do. God wants me to tend to these other things.

I won’t judge anyone for saying the same things. But something became more serious for me when I began to understand the sacrifice Our Lord made even deeper than I had throughout my life. I came to understand It through the ancient mass, by the way. Notice a theme? I started reading more and praying more. And I started wanting to see Him more.

I’ll tell you what I told my boy.

“The Creator of the universe is waiting in that humble church for you and me to come spend a few moments with him. He’s giving us a chance to ask Him blessings and tell Him we’re sorry for our sins. He’s giving us to atone for our own sins and the sins of others – especially during this month. The proud have their pride. He waits veiled in humility. Don’t you think that at our judgments [his and my particular judgments] He’ll remember that He waited and no one came but us? And if these people we’re passing on this busy highway and in these fast food joints and whatnot; if they knew and understood what This was, they’d crawl over broken glass to join us?”

I can be eloquent on the fly.

But it’s all true. And it’s beautiful. And it’s good. It’s good for us to be here with Our Lord. I will tell Him that I pray His blessing on each of you reading this now and I hope you will pray for me.

He waited over 40 years for me to come spend time with Him. He waits for you too.

May the Heart of Jesus in the Most. Leased Sacrament be praised, adored, and loved with grateful affection at every moment, in all the tabernacles of the world, and in the hearts of all men, even until the end of time! Amen.

Let Us All Step Backwards!

The incomparable Fr. Z. has a link to a video of a newly ordained FSSP priest giving his parents his first blessing. Check that out here.

Zulhsdorf accompanies the video with a bit of snarky editorializing. I happily expect nothing less. In his commentary, Fr. mocks the sentiments of those modernists who refer to us trads as “dangerous backward-steppers”.

This got me to thinking of a couple of important things.

1.) This is the first Friday of the month of June. June is the month of the Sacred Heart. MAKE THE DEVOTION OF THE NINE FIRST FRIDAYS! Start today if you can. Make reparation to His Sacred Heart by receiving Him worthily in Holy Communion. This month has been co-opted by sodomites under the direction of Satan himself. They call it “pride”. We must empty ourselves and practice ever more the virtue of Calvary – humility.

2.) Our Lord died on the cross to give Himself to us. He awaits us daily in the tabernacle. He even allows His priests to place Him in a monstrance for us to come and adore. Fr. Malachi Martin once remarked that what sets the Catholic apart from all others is his intimacy with the divine. Again, MAKE THE DEVOTION OF THE NINE FIRST FRIDAYS! Go to Him. Console Him in His agony borne for our sins. Tell Him your troubles. Honor His Mother. Give Him thanks. Spend an hour simply gazing upon His loveliness and wonder how the King of the Universe made Himself to be present for you in this way.

3.) When you visit our exposed King and it comes time to take your leave…

STEP BACKWARDS away from the monstrance. For heaven’s sake, if protocol demands we never turn our back on the Queen of England, how much more fitting to keep one’s eyes fixed on the Lord? Be a true “backwards-stepper”. You see, the more the enemies of Christ ridicule us for our devotional life and practices, the more we ought to serve it right back up at them.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

1.1.20

Happy New Year, dear friends and followers (both of you)!

Once again the calendar has turned over and I find myself taking stock, making new plans, and thanking God for this wonderful life. One year ago I wrote a post explaining the new turn I was taking with this blog. It was 9 years ago – January 1, 2011 – when I began writing this blog under its current form. I still feel that the best is yet to come. Let’s take a look at an excerpt from my post on that day…

“I will begin by relaying a story about my son.  He’s recently taken to watching a BBC claymation series called Shaun the Sheep.  I know BBC and “kids’ programming” don’t normally seem like a natural partnership.  Just go with it.  Tonight he was being such an angel that I allowed him to watch just one more episode before bed.  Sidenote: must figure out BBC claymation control lock on Netflix.  When Shaun went over I informed him it was time for bed.  Up the stairs we went.  Lest you think he’s only a couch potato he loves to have stories read to him at night.  He also now likes to hold his own book and “pretend” to read.  I haven’t the heart to tell him that every word in The Cat in the Hat is NOT “cat” so again, we simply go with it.  Tonight’s selection?  “Daddy?  Sheep book?”  Oh that’s right.  There’s a book on his shelf called Good Night Sheep or Bedtime Sheep or Go to Bed You Damn Sheep or something and he rather likes the pictures of all the animals in it.  Figuring on how tired he must have been — it was getting late for him — I pulled a fast one.  I flipped the light off and, laying him down on the bed, said: “It’s OK, son, Daddy can read in the dark.”  How hard could it be.  Here’s what transpired next.  “The stars are out.  It’s bedtime.  Night night, sheep.  The stars are out.  It’s bedtime.  Night night, lion.  The stars are out…”  “ZZZZZ”  It worked.  I made up a half-decent kids’ story on the spot and my son was out like a light.  Brilliant.  What?  You doubt the brilliance of my children’s book?  See if I care!  My kids’ book is better than any kids’ book you’ve ever written.  Ha!  Oh, I see…  YOU’VE NEVER WRITTEN A KIDS’ BOOK!  So there!  I win!!!”

Not bad for a first go-round… What’s truly funny is that I can actually remember that night vividly. You know who else “remembers” that night? My son. Somewhere in the middle of 2019 he discovered that his old man had been keeping this strange journal of our life together for just about as long as he’s been alive. Intrigued, he asked me to read him some selections. I haven’t read to him every night but on the nights I have, I’ve read multiple posts. Believe it or not, we haven’t nearly covered all of it. Prolific much? I’ll say. The best part is that he is spellbound. It would seem I write better posts than children’s books.

That brings us to my traditional New Years Day post. For the past few years I have made a solid effort to post something meaningful every year on this day. It sort of started way back with that first post in 2011. At that time the good folks at WordPress were running a feature called “Postaday”. It was a challenge. I like challenges. The goal was to post every day of the year. The eventual outcome and my success or lack thereof is not that important. What is significant is that it got me posting something every January 1st, hence this very post. Last year I used the New Years post as an opportunity to completely re-tool my blog. I changed the header image, changed my focus almost entirely toward writing thankful posts about my life with the kids, and archived over 1500 posts – making them private except to me. You could say I turned a new leaf. I also purchased my domain name finally.

2018, 2019, & 2020. Gratitude, Generosity, & Humility

My first post of 2019 was a story about the virtue rocks. On December 31, 2017 my wife passed a bag of gardening stones around the table and invited the kids, me, and our guests to take one. On the rocks were painted the names of virtues. This stemmed from an unfulfilled project I had been working on at a job I had just quit. It was a virtues-training program for our school children. My wife had simply re-purposed these rocks and put them to better use. The virtue painted on the rock that each participant took would be the virtue he would focus on improving in his life in the upcoming year. Mine was gratitude. That was tough. I wasn’t happy with where my career had gone and found it hard to be grateful for too many things. But as I said, I love a challenge. I focused on practicing gratitude in thought, word, and deed for the next 12 months and I think I actually got quite good at it. More importantly, I came to recognize the joy in my life again.

Last year I pulled “generosity”. I’d like to think this wasn’t a virtue I’d have a hard time with. As anyone who knows me will tell you, I’m the guy who gets up at 4:30 to drive you to the airport without hesitation. As anyone who knows me will also tell you, that’s because I’m obsessed with airports. OK, so there’s always room for improvement.

This year I reached into the virtue rock bag and pulled… HUMILITY. Looking at the shiny potato stone in my hand I pondered a moment before saying, “Honey? How in the hell am I supposed to practice humility when I’m so damned perfect?!” I wish I could have pulled something useful like “shredded” or “published”. And then I remembered that I am far from perfect. And that’s the point of this exercise – to grow by the daily practice of virtue. Ben Franklin once engaged in a similar project. He (incorrectly) identified something like ten virtues that were most helpful in living a good life. He further figured he could “master” each virtue in a week. He kept a journal of his progress. If I were to do the same it might read like a comical collection of stories written by a demented dad about his kids and their strange life together.

Franklin’s Virtue Journal (found on Reddit, not sure who to credit).

This year should be fun. By this time next year I’m sure to be the most humble person you’ve ever met!

And if I fail? I can probably throw the rock at someone.