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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Romney looks more like a leader

On the sexualization of our children

A dear friend of mine from California and I had a long discussion on the sexualization of children. The entire society of the West has turned a horrible corner into darkness regarding children and sex.

The EU and some Muslim countries want to lower the age of sexual consent to twelve. Some groups in the States have been politically working on this as well. But the most obvious area of sexualization is in the clothing industry. In America and in England for several years now, clothes which would have been termed "slutty" or "sexy" are being manufactured and sold to very young girls, as early as six.

Even clothes of older women, and my friend is seventy but extremely attractive, are now immodest and sexy.

What has happened is that those in charge of fashion have an agenda-sorry, this is true. If one looks at the pushing of the limits on clot'hing and tries to find modest fashions in most ordinary stores, one can be shocked Victoria Secrets are no longer secret and have sifted down to WalMart and higher end stores.

I gave up shopping at some stores years ago and could give a list of those which push sexy, immodest and trollops' clothes for all ages of women.

Many of my friends shop at Talbots, as the clothes there tend to be modest and not provocative.

But, mothers are to blame for how their girls dress.      

We Catholic women need to stop the sexualization of our children and grandchildren. Please pay attention. Pray to Mary Our Mother and Our Queen.

On the Stages of Perfection and a Warning.

Before I continue with the definitions of virtues and sins, it is very important that I re-iterate both the warnings of St. John of the Cross and Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange concerning the stages of growth in holiness towards perfection.

Knowing that God has called all of us to perfection, not merely chosen, obvious saints, Garrigou-Lagrange warns of becoming complacent, or falling into self-deceit regarding where one is in the levels of growth,

Now, we must work with the Holy Trinity in this walk, but we must not be deceived into thinking we are holier than we are.

Here are some of the points to remember:

1) Find a good confessor and/or spiritual director who understands and preferably has Thomistic, Scholastic background. In my limited experience, post-Vatican II trained priests without Scholastic understanding of sin and virtue cannot help one grow. The tendency too often is for priests to have lower expectations for holiness for the laity. This is not the believe of Garrigou-Lagrange.

2) Be absolutely honest with all sins, failings and weaknesses. Confessing weaknesses as well as sins helps a priest understand one better. If there are areas of healing which are necessary, share those in context of sinful behaviors.

3) If one's memory is not good, write down both sins and virtues combatting those sins. This can be done after the daily examination of conscience. I find mornings are better than evenings for this. But, one can do an examen in the evening.

4) Be honest about going backwards. St. John of the Cross and others refer to "Generous Souls", who do not avoid pain and are willing to be realistic about sin and weaknesses. If one avoids the Purgative Stage, for example, one will stay in that place until God is finished working.

5) Realize that we all have a duty to the Church to pursue perfection. No one has the real power of the Indwelling of the Holy Spirit without the life of the virtues. We cannot kid ourselves. The Holy Spirit can only work in power through a person who is humble, has purity of heart and a deep selflessness.

The rewards include a great intimacy with God, Christ and the Holy Spirit.

As always, I warn all against private revelations not approved. I think that the great saints, such as St. John of the Cross and St. Teresa of Avila have enough to say to us to keep us busy for a lifetime.

Also, be careful of extremes, which can indicate pride. My own namesake, St. Rose of Lima, did extreme things, but is a one-off type of girl. We cannot harm ourselves or not be able to meet the duties of the day in our pursuit of holiness. God bless you all.

Meditating on the Feeding of the Five Thousand

I am thinking today of the reading from Sunday on the Loaves and the Fishes. Apparently, there are still priests who insist it was just people being generous with what they had with them, instead of the Eucharistic miracle so clearly noted by St. John.

St. John was in exile when he wrote the Gospel. He had a keen mind and a pure heart. He was the apostle closest to Jesus and could say easily, that Christ had already decided He would create a miracle.

For those who believe in the Eucharist, this event is a prophecy, a pointing to the great miracle which occurs daily in every country of the world across the globe. This miracle of bread and wine becoming the Body and Blood of Christ reenacts the Passion and Death of Our Lord on Calvary.

I wonder it the priests who do not believe in the Feeding of the Five Thousand are also doubting, or do not believe in the True Presence?