Sunday, December 20, 2009
Standing at the Foot of the Cross
I have been away from this blog for quite some time now. But I have been very busy. I can hardly remember what life was like B.C. ("Before Cancer"). I heard a priest last week on Father Benedict Groeschel's program on EWTN say that standing in support of someone who is sick is like St. John standing at the foot of the cross. In some mystical way, those who suffer represent Christ on the cross and suffer with him.
Today at Eucharistic Adoration I read this from Thomas Merton's The Sign of Jonas: "The source of all sorrow is the illusion that of ourselves we are anything but dust. God is all our joy and in Him our dust can become splendor. The great sorrow of mankind is turned to joy by the love of Christ, and the secret of happiness is no longer to see sorrow except in the light of Christ's victory over sorrow. And then all sorrow contributes somehow to our happiness."
Saint Paul says "For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ." 2 Corinthians 1:5. "For I consider the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." Romans 8:18.
We will always suffer to greater or lesser degree. When we suffer directly we suffer with Christ on the cross. When we stand by those who suffer directly we stand at the foot of the cross with Saint John and Our Lady.
HEAVENLY FATHER, GIVER OF LIFE AND HEALTH: COMFORT AND RELIEVE YOUR SICK SERVANTS, AND GIVE YOUR POWER OF HEALING TO THOSE WHO MINISTER TO THEIR NEEDS, THAT THEY MAY BE STRENGTHENED IN THEIR WEAKNESS AND HAVE CONFIDENCE IN YOUR LOVING CARE; THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD. AMEN. (1979 Book of Common Prayer p. 459).