“Do not grumble, brethren, against one another” (Jas 5:9).
The Lord is near: it is the message that comes to us in this passage from the letter of Saint James. Certainly, looking at what is around us, it would not seem real: how much violence, injustice and oppression!
The Apostle James invites the Christians of his time, who lived in difficulties, to patience and to rejuvenate the mind and he proposes as an example and stimulus the figures of the farmer and the prophet. The first waits patiently for the autumn and the spring rains. His job depends on them and cannot do anything without them. The Palestinian farmer was so open to this action of God that the blessings or rain became proverbial... just as his patience became proverbial. The exhortation to patience has as its center the need to avoid grumbling and protests in order to live the precept of mutual love. The other example that St. James presents to his readers is that of the prophets who bear pain, persecution and, sometimes, death. They accept patiently everything because they understood that "the Lord's coming is near."
How can we accept and make our own this message? It invites us to understand, in the folds of history, the positive, the good, the seeds of the Word, that is, the signs of Christ's presence. There is the good: let us appreciate it and make it grow. This reassures us, it gives us courage, it put in this way a ray of light, which is the light of God in our hearts. It communicates to us new energy and the heart becomes capable of being like that of God, always ready to love.
Christians are not those who complain, but they know how to bring the light that they have in the heart in the environments where they live: in the family, at work, in times of leisure and rest, with friends. They are a positive presence, because the Lord is near. And with Him one can not be down. Like the disciples of Emmaus: "Did not our hearts burn within us while He talked to us on the road, while He opened to us the scriptures?” (Lk 24:32).
But sometimes, out of true love, we must speak as Jesus spoke to the disciples of Emmaus: “O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into His glory? (Lk 24:25-26).
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An Experience of Life:
At a bar here in Italy, which also sells magazines, where I live and go for a cup of coffee after my daily Mass, one of the wives (co-owner of the bar; two family owners), was talking about the calendar, which they sell, with a completely nude woman on the front. I said to her that she will have to render an account to God after her death for selling pornography in her store. She was not happy with me and became frustrated. I then said to her that we men, as God has created us, when we habitually look at pornography without repenting and seeking to amend our lives, begin to look upon women as objects of pleasure instead of persons to appreciate and to esteem. She said with indignation: “But who says this?” I answered, Pope Paul VI in Humanae Vitae! I then said to her that when husbands, who are habituated to looking at pornography, make love with their wives, they are making love with the image of the pornography in their head, not with their wives, which is a true betrayal! Italians in general are very adept to making banal everything including the most sacred things of our faith.
When a girl uses her half naked body as bait, she attracts fish interested in her body; when that fish gets tired of her body, he goes to another body and she goes into depression and wonders why?!? If she covers her body modestly and uses the mystery of her personality which God gave her, she attracts men interested in her unique character which is unrepeatable and thus this attraction will last a lifetime, with the help of prayer, and on into eternity! This is not easy when the vast majority of the male fish have truly become intoxicated, even to the point of modifying their brains, with pornography and thus are brainwashed and highly stimulated to seek what they see in the pornographic magazines, the perfect bodies which do not exist. Girls end up trying to compete with the perfectly disguised, camouflaged and fixed-up models and end up doing extreme diets and all kinds of other body-shaping exercises.
In the name of “women’s liberation” women have been truly debased and have forfeited their God-given dignity to be valued according to their fat tissue and flesh in the right places of their bodies (like cattle auctioning) because they have swallowed the continually repeated enticing slogans of the “father of lies” (Jn 8:44) who tells us that our worth is only in the visible and that God takes away our freedom and happiness. Only if women and men seek, find and embrace the Author and Giver of their intrinsic beauty and dignity can they escape from and come out of this hideous tunnel of deception to find true and lasting freedom, joy, peace and happiness. The first commandment of Satan is: “You must not suffer; avoid suffering at all costs!” While the Author of life tells us: “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Mt 16:24; Mk 8:34; 10:21; Lk 9:23). There is no Easter without Good Friday; there is no resurrection without the passion and the crucifixion in our personal lives in union with the One Who loves us more than all the love of others put together, Jesus Christ! Did the owners of this bar care about discovering the connection between pornography and the damage or the destruction to people, families and society? “Ignorance is bliss”, at least for ones own egotism, without any concern for the others unless we get caught and then only to save face! Hypocrites! Is “ignorance bliss” for eternity, or is Jesus right when He said: “The truth shall set you free” (Jn 8:32)? “Today, I was led by an Angel to the chasms of hell… But I noticed one thing: that most of the souls there are those who disbelieved that there is a hell.” (Diary of Saint Faustina, 741).
Our culture of death has not helped our boys to become true men who respect women but rather pathetic cowards masquerading as “Rambo” seeking only to use women for their egotistical pleasure, instead of sacrificing themselves for the true good of others as true men do! It is very difficult today both for the girl and for the boy to go against the very strongly promoted tide, a true deluge, of egotism of using each other for mutual masturbation which leads, in the end, to eliminating the weak who do not satisfy the self-centered desires and lustful pleasures of the strong. In the richer countries of the world we are truly living in the “culture of death” (Evangelium Vitae, by Pope John Paul II)!
A week later after this incident at the bar, the husband of this woman put a poster (about 36x24 inches) of a fully naked woman outside at the entrance of his bar in public view. When I protested he justified himself with an attitude of arrogance and laughing at me saying that God made women beautiful so why not look at them? He then pulled out another copy of what he posted outside his bar to show it to me close up inside the bar. I said that according to his logic men then should look at beautiful naked women and then leave their wives and break up the family and leave the children abandoned! He continued to joke and laugh at me. I am even more sad that the Pastor of the parish, who was present, just smiled and laughed at the inappropriate jokes so as to be in agreement with everyone as his way of treating others in a nice way and not being in disagreement with anyone! This Pastor is very generous and kind but it seems to me that his definition of “love” is to try to offer what the people want so that the people are all happy; when there is a conflict of interests between what he thinks the people want and what one reads in the Bible as explained by the Catechism of the Catholic Church, he ignores or pushes aside what the people do not want to hear.
It seems to me that in this situation one could apply the words of Christ: “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me; for you are not on the side of God, but of men.” (Mt 16:23).
Love, for the enemy, is the last frontier of a boundless mercy. To love in this way makes us similar to God, it realizes the image of the heavenly man.
But we must remember what Saint Thomas Aquinas wrote: “Rarely affirm, seldom deny, always distinguish.” Today in many countries of the world, the governments are pushing forward very strongly laws against “homophobia” even though this manipulation is against the will of the majority of the citizens of these countries. This word “homophobia” did not even exist a few years ago! Jesus taught us to love the sinner but hate the sin. But the non-believers, or “believers” who do not practice their faith, who are in the great majority today, do not distinguish between the sinner and the sin, and so, they accuse the true Christians of hating the people who have the tendency of homosexuality. Very soon there will be a true and open persecution against all those who express openly, even in the churches, that it is a grave sin, the act of homosexuality, which hurts not only the person who commits this immoral act, but also it greatly harms the families and the society. How quickly we forget what happened to Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen 19)!
True love of the enemy means to desire the true good of the enemy here on earth but also for all eternity. So many people today, also a great number of religious leaders and parents, seek to please and satisfy the desires of the flesh of the people without distinguishing if it is a sin or not, if it truly does good to the person or not. This is false and destructive love; this is misguided compassion! Few religious leaders today have the courage of the first Pope, Peter, the day of the birth of the Church, Pentecost, to say: “You have crucified Jesus” (Acts 4:10), “the author of life” (Acts 3:16), with your grave, mortal sins!
Jesus said to the apostles: “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves” (Mt 10:16). Our Lady continually asks us to pray for the priests, the bishops and the Pope, because there is a great temptation today, with so many people brainwashed by the mass media, the schools and almost all of the religious institutions, almost all under the control of the forces of evil, to accept this false and devastating “love”. Thus it is much easier, in the name of “love” (false), to live the easier part of the words of Jesus, to be “innocent as doves”: “Ignorance is bliss!” It is difficult to go against the current today, to seek the Truth with difficulty, with study and with assiduous prayer, in order to also be “wise as serpents”!
One of the acts of charity most important especially today and which is gravely lacking today, especially by priests, bishops and parents, is to make known, to make hated and to overcome sin. But a very great number of leaders have sacrifices eternity on the altar of human respect precisely because a great number of “Christians” do not want to know, to hate and to overcome their sins that they have allowed themselves to become habituated to!
It is true that we priests studied in pastoral theology “the need to apply the “law of graduality”. But what I find is that the recent popes, in the world today, put us on our guard not so much about the lack of applying the “LAW OF GRADUALITY” but rather the danger of the “GRADUALITY OF THE LAW”, which must be refuted in as much as it reduces the value of the law to a mere ideal.” (Visit: “An Open Letter To A Fellow Priest”; http://testimony-polo.blogspot.com/2009/11/open-letter-to-fellow-priest.html).
“When the disciples heard this they were greatly astonished saying, “Who then can be saved?” But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible”. (Mt 19:25-26; Mk 10:27; Lk 18:27). Jesus did not offer compromises!
When the Jews disputed saying: “How can this man give us his flesh to eat” (Jn 6:52), and then “many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him. Jesus said to the twelve, Will you also go away?” (Jn 6:66-67). Jesus did not compromise the Truth to accommodate the people!
It is interesting what Our Lady said about these our times:
“Each day recite the prayers of the Rosary. WITH THE ROSARY, PRAY FOR THE POPE, THE BISHOPS, AND THE PRIESTS. The work of the devil will infiltrate even the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against other bishops. The priests who venerate Me will be scorned and opposed by their conferees… churches and altars sacked, THE CHURCH WILL BE FULL OF THOSE WHO ACCEPT COMPROMISE …” (http://www.miraclerosarymission.org/akita.htm).
If the majority of the local priests indicate, in one way or another, that one can get to heaven without passing through Calvary with Jesus, who will believe the one priest in the area that explains that this is contrary to the constant teaching of the Catholic Church and all of the saints? If parents are not united, a child will take the words of the parent who offers the easiest path. This is false love, this is false compassion, which does not lead to true freedom (Jn 8:32) but true slavery and destruction!
It is true that a pastor should seek to help and comfort those who are suffering; Christ had great compassion for the suffering. But when one discerns that it is the will of God to accept and embrace the gift of a small piece of the cross of Christ, the pastor should encourage the people to hold fast to the true teachings of Christ and not push aside the more difficult teachings of Sacred Scripture explained by the Church. The Curate of Ars said a priest must be ready to suffer with and for every penitent who come to him in confession, even though the holy Curate encouraged people to embrace with love and trust the sufferings that God sends to each of us in His loving divine providence. We must imitate Simon of Cyrene to carry with Jesus His cross, even though at times we feel compelled to do so (Mk 15:21).
“Now I rejoice in my sufferings for you sake, and in my flesh I complete what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church” (Col 1:24).
This same seemingly meek and humble priest, who just about never raises his voice to anyone, reacted strongly to me when I praise a woman, Mary Ann Kuharski, with 12 children who I saw on EWTN and who is doing great work as the Director of Prolife across America; his reaction was as if this woman had done a grave wrong or was out of her mind! This same pastor, after I spoke of the importance of maintaining great reverence before the infinite God in the Eucharist during my homily at daily Mass in a church where he is the Pastor, citing a few things from Church documents such as Memoriale Domini (1969), again reacted strongly even to the point of just about yelling at me in the bar after Mass. When I asked him if it was wrong to cite the documents of the Church or writings of the popes, he responded forcefully, “Not in this case” (“In questo caso, No!”)! People do not like to suffer with more children than one or two which gives satisfaction to the parents, but no more. People do not like to maintain humility before the Blessed Sacrament and to persevere in not chattering in church with their friends. Many so-called experts of the liturgy after the Second Vatican Council ignored or discarded most of the wisdom of 2000 years of tradition and shifted the focus of the Liturgy toward the people and the community instead of maintaining the primary focus on the adoration of God and communion with God in the Sacred Liturgy. This was rather appealing to a great number of priests and bishops who are now very reluctant in accepting the reform of the reform of the Sacred Liturgy begun by Pope Benedict XVI.
I have discovered that this priest talks to others about my behavior in this situation as if I am rather strange, like I am from another world. It seems that there are many Catholics today, who I have met, that are very similar to our Protestant brothers because they are comfortable with the Bible but not with the Catechism of the Catholic Church. It occurred to me that it is much easier to interpret the Sacred Scriptures according to ones own desires and subjectivism and whims than the official Catechism of the Catholic Church! In other words it is much easier to manipulate according to ones own whims and desires 10 briefly stated commandments from chapter 5 of the book of Deuteronomy than 505 paragraphs (CCC 2052-2557) from the official Catechism of the Catholic Church (1994)!
This less problematic way of accommodating what the people desire is what so many priests and bishops do to be “politically correct”, to not make waves even though Christ always proclaimed the full truth, the full Gospel, which led to His crucifixion! After I saw the poster still outside the bar the next morning I said in my homily that morning that I decided to make a Christmas Novena in which I would not take coffee (“cappuccino”) after Mass each morning, with the intention of making reparation for all of the sins caused by pornography. But after Christmas I continued to not go to this bar. When I saw the same wife on the street a few days later she made fun of me asking me if I was afraid of naked women! I said that my Jesus suffers due to pornography. She retorted back: “But what suffering, what suffering?” (“Ma che soffrire, ma che soffrire?!?”).
Is it not in our egotistical times, in the “culture of death” (Evangelium Vitae), that we hear shouted and promoted in the mass media the prophecy of Jesus (the eighth “Station of the Cross”): “For behold, the days are coming when they will say, ‘Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breast that never gave suck!’ Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us’; and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ (“The survivors will find themselves so desolate that they will envy the dead.” - Akita). For if they do this when the wood is green (when all is easy in wellbeing and richness; no sacrifice in giving life, procreation (Gen 1:28), as God did in creating us!), what will happen when it is dry?” (Lk 23:29-31). In the past this prophecy was often applied to the women of Jerusalem and to those like them in future times, those who have compassion for Jesus in His great sufferings for us. The truthful economists, who do not promote the culture of death, tell us that one of the most fundamental factors causing the current economic crisis is that for the first time in the history of the world and of the Church in the richer countries there are more grandparents than children who must sustain the pensions of those in retirement.
A week after Christmas the identical twin sacristans, who like chattering with their buddies at the bar about sport events (Juventus fans) and who were happy with my friendly and outgoing presence at this bar in the past, grumbled to me that I should return to this bar and make peace. I said to them that this would be like making peace 2000 years ago with the soldiers who were joking and laughing at Jesus on the cross and offered Jesus vinegar. Those who joke and laugh about this “grave offense” of selling and distributing pornographic materials are doing the same as the soldiers 2000 years ago who crucified Jesus! I added that I will return to this bar if they stop selling pornography. They murmured to me: “This would be difficult!” (“Questa sarà difficile!”). My personal choice to seek to discover and do what Jesus wants in this situation was a suffering for me to not have a cup of cappuccino with friends each morning after my daily Mass!
When I saw this same wife (co-owner of the bar) at a social lunch a few weeks later, she said to me that if I talk about this anymore to others she was going to come into the church while I was celebrating Mass and do something. I told her to bring her gun and shoot me!
A few months later when I saw one of the other wives (co-owner of the bar; two families), who was more sympathetic toward me (her mother went to Holy Mass everyday), at the weekly street market, she asked me why I do not come to the bar anymore. I said to her that if she stops selling pornography in her bar I will come back immediately. Her facial expression revealed that she was rather bewildered, that she was not able to understand my motivation for my behavior! As so many so-called Christians today, totally immersed in the grave and devastating deception of relativism which surrounds us today like the air that we breath in which there is no more objective and absolute truth, it did not even enter into her mind to seek or to ask the question: what are the effects on others caused by selling pornography for a few coins, or what does Jesus want or desire in this situation, or in this situation what would give delight to Jesus Who gave us everything we have and even died on the cross due to our indifference and ingratitude?
When people ask me why I do not frequent that bar anymore, I give them the following printed on a small piece of paper:
Catechism of the Catholic Church:
2354 “PORNOGRAPHY consists in removing real or simulated sexual acts from the intimacy of the partners, in order to display them deliberately to third parties. It offends against chastity because it perverts the conjugal act, the intimate giving of spouses to each other. It does grave injury to the dignity of its participants (actors, vendors, the public), since each one becomes an object of base pleasure and illicit profit for others. It immerses all who are involved in the illusion of a fantasy world. It is a grave offense. Civil authorities should prevent the production and distribution of pornographic materials.”
Relativism, according to Pope Benedict XVI, is "the most profound difficulty of our time." (http://popebenedictxviblog.blogspot.it/2005_05_01_archive.html).
In his homily at the Mass preceding the conclave that quickly elected him Pope Benedict XVI, then Cardinal Ratzinger said: “Today, having a clear faith based on the Creed of the Church is often labeled as fundamentalism. Whereas relativism, that is, letting oneself be "tossed here and there, carried about by every wind of doctrine", seems the only attitude that can cope with modern times. WE ARE BUILDING A DICTATORSHIP OF RELATIVISM that does not recognize anything as definitive and whose ultimate goal consists solely of one's own ego and desires.” (http://www.vatican.va/gpII/documents/homily-pro-eligendo-pontifice_20050418_en.html).
When I offered this written copy, while walking on the street near the post office, of the explanation of why I do not frequent that bar anymore to the bar owner who had posted the naked woman outside his bar, he just smiled and joke at me as if I was some type of idiot. But more than four months after the incident, when I walked past his bar while he was sitting outside with someone else, I said good morning to them and wished then a nice day and the owner of the bar did not even lift his head to respond to me. When a major crisis begins in Italy and the mass media puts the blame on the true Christians, what will be the reaction of this man toward me then? “I have said all this to you to keep you from falling away. They will put you out of the synagogues; indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. And they will do this because they have not known the Father, no me. But I have said these things to you, that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you of them” (Jn 16:1-4).
From a website in Italian one finds the following in regards to MASONRY AND SEXUAL CORRUPTION:
2) “Our job is to PROMOTE A WAVE OF PORNOGRAPHY and to present it with sympathy as the supreme goal of artistic freedom” (Word of order of the Italian Communist Party).
3) “If we want to destroy a nation, WE MUST FIRST DESTROY IT’S MORALS; then it will fall in our laps as a ripe fruit. Awaken the interest of the youth for sex and it will be yours” (Lenin).
To conquer America, Khrushchev had sent into America a great quantity of pornography. In an interview with the Sec. of Agriculture, Esra Taft Benson during the Eisenhower administration, KHRUSHCHEV said, “You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept communism outright; but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of Socialism until you will finally wake up and find that you already have communism. We won’t have to fight you; we will so weaken your economy UNTIL YOU FALL LIKE OVERRIPE FRUIT INTO OUR HANDS.”
"Religion does not fear the dagger’s point; but it can vanish under corruption. Let us not grow tired of corruption: we may use a pretext, such as sport, hygiene, health resorts. It is necessary to corrupt, that our boys and girls practice nudism in dress. To avoid too much reaction, one would have to progress in a methodical manner: first, undress up to the elbow; then up to the knees; then arms and legs completely uncovered; later, the upper part of the chest, the shoulders, etc. etc." (International Review on Freemasonry, 1928)
Don Jo (Joseph) Dwight (Italy)