The Irish Church

My opening line in last week’s corner expressed prayerful concern and support for the Republic of Ireland, in her legal battle and pending vote, to decide for (against proposition #8) continuing government protection for Irish babies in the womb. By now, as you know, that battle was tragically lost. By voting “yes” to the amendment to repeal the 8th amendment to their Constitution, the nation has voted to no longer “acknowledge the right to life of the unborn.” According to Catholic websites the anti-life activists were greatly aided and abetted by the American abortion lobby, consisting of secular political and media interest, planned parenthood, entertainers, and liberal corporate giants like “Google”. The U.K. based “Catholic Herald” website reports that a major cause for this rejection of Church teachings by this formerly most Catholic of nations, was a deep-seeded antipathy towards the Irish Catholic Church in general. Antipathy fueled by the decades of the scandalous homosexual abuse of minors (males under 18) by priests. Sadly this deviant behavior cast a cloud of distrust over the many loyal, saintly and humble Irish priests. Please keep these priests, the Irish Church, and all future mother’s in your prayers. And let us all pray as well that they do not accept the abortion lobby’s next efforts to pass a law (like our infamous Roe v Wade amendment) that legalizes abortion.

An American website, the “National Catholic Register” (owned by EWTN) predicts that “earthquake-like shockwaves” of abortion are headed Ireland’s way. By denying equal protection to both the unborn and their mothers, abortion will increase exponentially, as it did here in the U.S. after Roe v Wade. Which brings me to the point I wanted to stress. I appealed at Masses last week for all of us to give prayerful thought to how we can become actively effective in bringing an end to abortion in our city, state and country. One way is to take the time to read up on abortion and the horrendous long-lasting impact on the survivors…the mothers and the fathers of the lost children.

The “National Catholic Register” relates from medical findings: “Murder of the innocents does not come without a cost. After abortion, many mothers discover that the procedure they thought would free them to get on with their lives unencumbered, had become a burden too heavy to carry. Women turn to drugs and alcohol to numb the pain, or become involved in one toxic relationship after another. Some have trouble bonding with their future children, and some…never conceive again. A woman never forgets her aborted child, even if she becomes committed to the “pro-choice” cause. Fathers, too, suffer the same regret. They feel the shockwaves of abortion and it doesn’t make a difference what their role was, whether they insisted on, or coerced the abortion, or told their wife or girlfriend that it’s “her choice” and allowed it’s death, instead of protecting their child.

Our Parish has accepted the request of the Diocesan Respect Life Office, to take on, and embrace, a focus on assisting the surviving victims of abortion…the mothers and fathers. There is a wonderful resource to make this merciful outreach feasible and successful. It is the world’s largest ministry for healing after abortion, and it’s right here at our fingertips in the organization called Rachel’s Vineyard. Rachel’s Vineyard is described as a safe place to renew, rebuild, and redeem hearts broken by abortion. Weekend retreats offer a supportive, confidential and non-judgmental environment where women, and men, can express, release, and reconcile, painful post-abortive emotions, to begin the process of restoration, renewal, and healing. I am looking forward to getting this new parish charism up and going as soon as possible. Please give thought to volunteering to help me get our involvement operational as we become knowledgeable intercessors for those “neighbors” in need of God’s mercy, comfort, forgiveness and healing. Please call or e-mail me if this opportunity touches your heart. “Whatever you do for the least of My sisters and brothers…you do for Me.”

Today, is the Feast of Corpus Christi, the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ. Oh, so often overlooked with indifference, this Gift of His Real Presence, His Body and Blood that Christ gave us, should be honored and reverenced with our utmost awe. We need to hold in awe, the fact that our God has made it so very simple for us to have Him until the end of time. To some outside of our Catholic Faith, it may seem quite odd that we would have such a Feast Day and a innate and profound yearning to be with this Presence as often as we can. (Sadly, it is considered an oddity as well, by those lukewarm Catholics who do not really believe in the Real Presence.) This Presence is brought about at every Holy Mass, through the instrumentality of the priest, reciting the words of Christ in concert with the action of the Holy Spirit. Belief in this Presence is at the very core of who we are as Catholics. Under the appearance of the bread and wine we behold the Risen Christ…truly, fully, and substantially present in His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity.

Whether it seems odd to you or not, if you are not already doing so, on this magnificent Corpus Christi Feast Day, please pray for an internal conviction to join our Parish Adoration Guild, and experience what those who are radically in love with Our Savior have been receiving. Receive the Peace He desires for you, and the Graces He pours out on those who refuse to be indifferent to His Real Presence, the Presence that He promised us and sealed with His Redemptive Death on the Cross.

May the Body of Christ keep you safe for eternal life,