Friday, August 28, 2015

The Gospel According to...

Lovely vintage wedding photos here.

Ashley Madison: "Life is Short; Have an Affair."

God: "Eternal Damnation is Long: Maybe Don't."

Oh, those poor Ashley Madison customers!! They signed up in good faith, assuming their secrets would be faithfully protected; that the adultery website would be a safe, secure, place. That their secrets would stay that way...forever (or at least till Death did them part!). Their hope and faith in Ashley has been BETRAYED! Those poor... oh wait.

Like that brilliant Matt Walsh guy says, Cheating on Your Spouse is not a Mistake.

"stupid enough to register their names in a database of adulterers compiled by a company whose very business is dishonesty..."

May God have mercy on Western Civ. 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

O my God, this is so beautiful

I am not one to use OMG as an interjection. My subject heading is a prayer, but it is also an invitation to you. My heart is very full. I have lost my sister-in-law Joanne to cancer. Please pray for her husband and sons.

Do yourself a favour and go pray the Office of Readings. The opening hymn alone will lift your soul, but not as much as the sermon below.

The priest in my home town gave two very beautiful homilies, at Joanne's vigil prayers and the next day at her funeral. Of the many wise and inspiring and true things he said, this one has stayed with me the longest: "Joanne enriched our lives."

Riches: how most of us hanker after them. Coincidentally (or not) our family was recently in Banff, the lovely national park in Alberta (pics to follow at some point). We hiked the mountain trails and saw much beauty. We also toured some very ritzy hotels, and I think it left some of our kids feeling kind of wistful, as they saw how the "rich" live. Well, kids, there's more to life than soaking it up in a swimming pool in the mountains and dining at a five-star restaurant and buying souvenirs (original art, gems, so forth) worth $20,000, but it all looks rather dreamy to teenagers who get told every so often in daily life, "We can't afford that."

After Father's comment (actually, during the Communion meditation hymn) at the funeral, I realized: Love is the only wealth. If you do not love, you give nothing. If you are not loved, you have nothing. Love is the only wealth. 

Of course, I have always known this. But sometimes you just need to be hit between the eyes and stabbed through the heart with the profundity of this truth.

The best news is, we are all rich beyond measure, because we are all loved, deeply and passionately, by God.

And then today, I read this sermon on Love in the Office of Readings.

From a sermon by Saint Bernard, abbot
I love because I love, I love that I may love

Love is sufficient of itself, it gives pleasure by itself and because of itself. It is its own merit, its own reward. Love looks for no cause outside itself, no effect beyond itself. Its profit lies in its practice. I love because I love, I love that I may love. Love is a great thing so long as it continually returns to its fountainhead, flows back to its source, always drawing from there the water which constantly replenishes it. Of all the movements, sensations and feelings of the soul, love is the only one in which the creature can respond to the Creator and make some sort of similar return however unequal though it be. For when God loves, all he desires is to be loved in return; the sole purpose of his love is to be loved, in the knowledge that those who love him are made happy by their love of him.

The Bridegroom’s love, or rather the love which is the Bridegroom, asks in return nothing but faithful love. Let the beloved, then, love in return. Should not a bride love, and above all, Love’s bride? Could it be that Love not be loved?

Rightly then does she give up all other feelings and give herself wholly to love alone; in giving love back, all she can do is to respond to love. And when she has poured out her whole being in love, what is that in comparison with the unceasing torrent of that original source? Clearly, lover and Love, soul and Word, bride and Bridegroom, creature and Creator do not flow with the same volume; one might as well equate a thirsty man with the fountain.

What then of the bride’s hope, her aching desire, her passionate love, her confident assurance? Is all this to wilt just because she cannot match stride for stride with her giant, any more than she can vie with honey for sweetness, rival the lamb for gentleness, show herself as white as the lily, burn as bright as the sun, be equal in love with him who is Love? No. It is true that the creature loves less because she is less. But if she loves with her whole being, nothing is lacking where everything is given. To love so ardently then is to share the marriage bond; she cannot love so much and not be totally loved, and it is in the perfect union of two hearts that complete and total marriage consists. Or are we to doubt that the soul is loved by the Word first and with a greater love?

Joanne loved like that. Her face literally glowed with the love of Christ. She enriched our lives. She died a wealthy woman. If I can attain half her holiness and joy, my life will not have been lived in vain. Pray for us, Jo. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Every so often, you have to give thanks

...that the Sixties are over. I was watching Sponge Bob Squarepants with my 11-year-old and they used this song on the background track. I'd never heard it before, but of course I immediately recognized the voice, and googled accordingly.

One thing I found remarkable was how natural and incredibly at ease he was throughout the entire performance. Cringeworthy, and it makes you wonder how Simon Cowell would have reacted, had those "Whatzit's Got Talent" or similar shows existed back then. Enjoy. Or not.


Thursday, August 6, 2015

It's almost as if they KNEW the T-shirt factory that the Riders were going to have a 0-6 (wins/losses) start to the season. Keeping calm is just about all we fans have left.

"The one thing we have to do, we have to correct our negatives," said head coach Corey Chamblin. Well, Corey, thank goodness football isn't ruled by the laws of mathematics/integers. You can't actually go below zero.