Heaven Can’t Wait . . .

We had a death in the family last year and when I called with condolences and said that I would continue to pray for the deceased soul, her daughter exclaimed, “Oh, don’t worry. I know for a fact that my mother is in Heaven. She was a good person.” And, I know that the deceased was a good person and I also know that she has her share of quirks, jealousies, and just, plain angry days. Of course, I pray that she reached the highest of eternities in short time but to rely on someone saying it is so versus the reality of additional prayer being needed was a little scary.

Heaven is attainable and within every person’s reach . . . but they have to strongly and faithfully reach for it every day of their lives and live their earthly life in such a way to find welcome in the hereafter.

Saint Vincent Ferrer relates a story about an archdeacon who gave up his title and went into the desert to pay and do penance. It happened that he died the same day and hour as Saint Bernard. After the archdeacon’s death, he appeared to his bishop and said to him, “Know, Monsignor, that at the very hour I passed away, thirty-three thousand people also died. Out of this number, Bernard and myself went up to heaven without delay, three went to Purgatory, and all the others fell into Hell.”

Biblical references to eternal salvation give adequate note that the Gates of Heaven are only breached by the souls who sought the Will of God.

Only two Hebrews out of two million entered the Promised Land after leaving Egypt.

Only four escaped the fire of Sodom and Gomorrah.

And how many people were saved on the Ark?

“Many attain to faith, but few to the heavenly kingdom.” Saint Gregory

“There are few who are saved.” Saint Anselm

“Out of one hundred thousand people whose lives have always been bad, you will find barely one who is worthy of indulgence.” Saint Jerome

Always reminds me of the story about the rich man who couldn’t be bothered to help the beggar that only asked for the scraps from his table. When the rich man found himself in the fires of Hell, he asked God to send help to his brothers that they would not fall into the pit and be saved. God told him that they already had prophets and holy men to teach them if they would but listen.

“While the Savior does not reject the willing, He does not constrain the unwilling: while He does not deny Himself to those who seek Him, He does not strive with those who cast Him out.”
St. Ambrose 4th century

Working With Divine Mercy

“There is always hope for the man who knows that he is doing wrong; but there is no hope for the man who is doing wrong and calls the wrong right. The Catholic gets off the road like anyone else, but he never throws away the map.” Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen (Wartime Prayer Book)

That About Sums it Up!

Actually, I was recently informed by a ‘devout Catholic’ that since I disagreed with the Pope’s vagueness on Catholic reception of Communion after divorce and remarriage, that I was not a Catholic in HIS view and probably needed a good dose of Confession. Nothing like appointing yourself in charge of Catholic Law and your interpretation. Guess he thought he was worthy to throw that first rock!

The Final Conflict . . .

“We do know that at the end of time, when the great conflict between the forces of good and evil takes place, Satan will appear without the Cross, as the Great Philanthropist and Social Reformer to become the final temptation of mankind.” Archbishop Fulton Sheen (Life of Christ)

The Catholic Church is Forever!

There is a lot of discussion and worry about the fate of the Catholic Church today. Too many people are forgetting that God promised the Church would survive. So much conversation and often too little prayer. Yes, we have problems and possible schisms in our midst but we still have Jesus, Body and Blood, at Mass. It might be scary from our narrow point of view, but the ‘weather’ outside the bounds of the Catholic Church could be worse. I found this quote that while funny is full of meaning for everyone right now.

The New Testament compares the church to the ark of Noah. There is an old yarn about Noah finding his son on the bow of the ark, in a deep funk. Noah asked him how he was and he replied, “Not good, Dad. If it weren’t for the storm outside, I couldn’t stand the stink inside.”

Will America Remain Great?

“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers – and it was not there . . . in her fertile fields and boundless forests and it was not there . . . in her rich mines and her vast world commerce – and it was not there . . . in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution – and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, she will cease to be great.”
― Alexis de Tocqueville