Monday, May 12, 2014

A Prayer in Reparation and in Love

Tonight the seminary community gathered to pray in reparation for the "Black Mass" scheduled for Harvard University this evening.  We pray for all involved that God will change their hearts and give them the grace and freedom of the children of God!

This is the homily I prayed at the holy hour:


My dearest Brothers: 

Tonight, this chapel is filled, filled with Paschal Faith – a faith that is stronger than any evil; a faith that if only the size of a mustard seed, could move mountains and even blaspheming hearts. Tonight, in Liturgy, adoration and devotion, we beg God to increase that Faith, that in some small way we might offer him reparation for those who seek to desecrate the Holy Eucharist just down the street and the across the river from us.

Tonight we gather as a Paschal people in the glorious Season of that Risen Light.  The light that illumines every darkness – even the thick darkness of sacrilege and disbelief.  

It was just a few weeks ago, we stood here in the darkness at this very hour, and gathered round the pillar of fire that destroys the darkness of sin, the eternal light by which wickedness is washed away and innocence restored:Christ, our Light who triumphed over death, over Satan, evil and sin. 

And just as that darkness was overcome by the light of his Risen Glory, so the Paschal faith dispels the darkness of this night, with the assurance that Christ Jesus defends his Church still, whenever and wherever she is threatened or attacked. 

Never doubt the Paschal Victory which Christ has won for us! Never doubt it, but confess it, affirm it and proclaim it to all the world by your prayer and by your preaching and by the witness of your life.  Christ is risen!  And he walks right through the locked doors of our fears into the upper room of our hearts and whispers to the depths of us: Peace be with you!  Peace!  And in that greeting he stills our hearts, strengthens our Faith and assures us that his victory is ours, no matter how great the battle to be fought. 

That’s why three times a day in this holy house, we recite the prayer that Jesus taught us as our infallible protection against the Evil One: the Lord’s own prayer, the Pater Noster, the Our Father.  There is no greater shield, no stronger armor than the words of the Lord Jesus himself.  To pray this prayer is not only to pray in the words of Jesus, but to pray with Jesus as he intercedes for us at the right hand of the Father in Heaven.  

From the time I was a little child until the day I die, this is the prayer which will calm my fears, dry my tears and save me from the Evil One, who yet prowls about the streets of Boston, seeking to devour those souls willing to be his food. Tonight, we pray for those poor souls, that Christ, the Good Shepherd, might seek them out and bring them home, freed from the hunter’s snare. 

We pray for them because as priests and those whom God may well be calling to Priesthood, we seek to imitate the love of the Good Shepherd who sought out the lost sheep, binding up their wounds and carrying them home.  We pray for them, that God might disentangle them from the web of Satan’s works, his empty promises and the sin that binds them to his kingdom.  We pray that God might return them to the freedom of the children of God.

That is why we have gathered here tonight: to pray in reparation and in  love for those who have chosen to embrace the darkness and turn from the Paschal light. We pray for them in love.  For, as Pope Benedict VI so wisely taught:

“This is the true, authentic and perfect divine power: to respond to evil not with evil but with good, to insults with forgiveness, to homicidal hatred with life-giving love. Thus evil is truly vanquished because it is cleansed by God’s love; thus death is defeated once and for all because it is transformed into a gift of life. God the Father raises the Son: death, the great enemy, is engulfed and deprived of its sting, and we, delivered from sin, can have access to our reality as children of God.”


May Mary, Mother of the Church, source of all tenderness for those who seek her Son; Mary, the new Eve who crushes the head of the ancient serpent; Mary, help of Christians and refuge of sinners, be our sure protection against the Evil One this night and always! O Most gracious Virgin Mary, look upon your sons, and be ever a Mother to us!   Amen.

____

As the Holy Hours at Saint Paul's in Cambridge and at Saint John's Seminary concluded, we read the following news in the Boston Globe: "A reenactment of satanic rituals known as a “black mass” that had been scheduled for Monday evening on the Harvard campus was abruptly canceled amid a chorus of condemnation from Catholic groups and university officials and students. Lucien Greaves, a spokesman for the New York-based Satanic Temple, said in a phone interview that the event was canceled because organizers no longer had a venue."