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    Fr. Joseph Jenkins

  • The blog header depicts an important and yet mis-understood New Testament scene, Jesus flogging the money-changers out of the temple. I selected it because the faith that gives us consolation can also make us very uncomfortable. Both Divine Mercy and Divine Justice meet in Jesus. Priests are ministers of reconciliation, but never at the cost of truth. In or out of season, we must be courageous in preaching and living out the Gospel of Life. The title of my blog is a play on words, not Flogger Priest but Blogger Priest.

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Mary is the Signpost to Jesus

Mary always brings us back to her Son. The Eastern churches have such a high appreciation of this truth that all icons of Mary have her holding the child, Jesus. A possible exception to this was brought to my attention with an icon of Mary in an Eastern chapel at the Basilica Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC. However, looking closer we find that Jesus is still present, albeit through a stole she holds emblazoned with the Greek, Alpha and Omega. Jesus is the beginning and end of all things. The stole signifies Christ the High Priest. He is our Mediator. No one comes to the Father except through him.

It has been argued in Catholic circles that just as the titles and history around Mary have insured an orthodox Christology; so too is Mary and our devotion toward her necessary for a full and genuine Christian faith. A priest friend long involved with Lutheran-Catholic dialogue was challenged about this in an ecumenical setting. He said no slight was intended toward our Protestant brothers and sisters. Nevertheless, he insisted that Mary still had to figure in the equation of faith. Catholics would give her direct recognition; but my friend insisted that any good Lutheran who loved Jesus Christ still gave Mary a degree of unspoken or indirect honor. Jesus will always be the Son of Mary.

A genuine love of Jesus makes room for love of Mary.

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