The Jaws of the Lion

It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins. 2 Maccabees 12:46 Domine, Jesu Christe, Rex gloriae, libera animas omnium fidelium defunctorum de poenis inferni et de profundo lacu. Libera eas de ore leonis ne absorbeat eas tartarus, ne cadant in obscurum; Sed signiferContinue reading “The Jaws of the Lion”

The Devil’s Cross

Blessed are they who suffer persecution for justice’s sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:10 By the time we reach this capstone of the Beatitudes, it has long been evident that true happiness is inseparable from suffering. Of course, Christ continually refers us to the “kingdom of heaven,” in which our sacrificesContinue reading “The Devil’s Cross”

Our Own Judgment

All the saints recommend lifelong meditation on the Four Last Things: Death, Judgment, Heaven, and Hell. Regarding the first, its chief characteristic is inevitability. No vaccine, swanky job, celebrity status, or social safety net will postpone our day of reckoning forever. And when that day comes, in comparison to eternity, our life will appear laughablyContinue reading “Our Own Judgment”

Paradise and Pomegranates

Thy plants are a paradise of pomegranates with the fruits of the orchard. Canticle of Canticles, 4:13 According to nutritionists, the pomegranate is a “superfood,” containing a high concentration of nutrients with a panoply of beneficial health effects. The fruit is also visually spectacular, as the above photo illustrates. Sacred scripture chooses the pomegranate asContinue reading “Paradise and Pomegranates”

Leaping with the Lord

Behold, he comes leaping upon the mountains, skipping over the hills. Canticle of Canticles 2:8 In the midst of Passiontide, during which we contemplate our Lord’s sacrifice of the human nature he had adopted thirty-three years (and nine months) prior, we pause to celebrate the joyful day that made that sacrifice possible. By the AnnunciationContinue reading “Leaping with the Lord”

Running To and Fro

Be still and see that I am God. Psalm 45:11 The just shall shine, and shall run to and fro like sparks among the reeds. Wisdom 3:7 We have it on the best authority that eternal life consists in knowing “the only true God” (Jn 17:3). The vision of God, whose goodness is infinite andContinue reading “Running To and Fro”

Guarding the Gates of Hell

Thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matthew 16:18 The temple of Solomon was built on a very special rock. The Foundation Stone was considered the center of all creation, and a junction between heaven and earth. As Jeff CavinsContinue reading “Guarding the Gates of Hell”

Hang on Tight!

The ignorant man clings to the dust until he becomes dust; the wise and prudent man clings to heaven until he reaches heaven. The place where you hang on, you will belong to it. Saint Charbel Makhlouf (source) One should not follow those who advise us to think human thoughts, since we are human, andContinue reading “Hang on Tight!”