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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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Intercession of Mary & the Saints

bvm_024QUESTION:  Why must Mary intercede? And what if she doesn’t want to? Does that mean your prayers are not heard by Jesus? I guess this question goes for praying to all the Saints.

Why? How can she not? If you are watching a football game and the receiver gets the ball, are you not rooting him on to victory? The crowd becomes like one unified whole— shouting, singing, doing the wave, etc. This analogy offers but a pale point of reference to the role of Mary and the saints. We are all in this together— the journey from mortal to eternal life. The very definition of a saint makes what the division you suggest impossible. The sanctity of heaven implies the utter transformation of one into a new Christ— of one mind and will with our Lord. What he wants, they want. A little girl in church was asked one time for the definition of a saint. She looked at the figures in the stained-glass windows and replied, “Saints are those who allow the light to shine through.” Quite right! And the Light of the World is Christ, dispelling the darkness of ignorance, sin, and death. This process of conversion begins in this life; we can and should be perfected in holiness by the grace of God. We can be ever remade into Christ’s image. Heaven simply brings this development to its full conclusion. People who knew Mother Teresa said that to be near her was almost like being in the presence of Jesus— so fully did she manifest the living Christ in her faith and life. We can also become saints if we allow God to so work in our lives. We need to seek a restoration of all things in Christ, including ourselves. The question about division between the saints and Jesus says less about the heavenly hosts than about ourselves— our own brokenness and bondage to sin— our own refusal to fully embrace the Gospel of Life. Sometimes selfishness and hatred invade our prayers; such is never the case for Mary and the Saints. They are immaculate windows to the divine. Further, they are a part of us. The Church in Glory is inextricably united to the earthly Church in Glory and the Church in Purgation. The Mystical Body (Eph. 1:23; 1 Cor. 12:27) remains intact. The saints intercede for us precisely as perfectly conformed elements in this wondrous union. Death is not the end of love. This is at the heart of Christ’s resurrection— his Father’s Love (the Holy Spirit no less) restored him back to life. The family of God in heaven has not forgotten those of us still facing the trial. Love compels them to remember us and to pray for us.