Monday, November 3, 2008

Catholics: Be joyful!

A guest post by STEVE KELLMEYER of Bridegroom Press

Remember this today:

"Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."—1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

We don't have to be happy, we do have to be joyful.

Being happy is being comfortable, healthy and well-fed.
Being joyful is knowing that God's plan is being worked out,
and our obedience and submission to it contributes to His glory.

Jesus was not happy on the Cross, but He was joyful.

We fast and pray, we ask for mercy, but we accept whatever comes, punishment or pleasure.
Times of persecution were prophesied.
If we are found worthy to be subject to them, we should rejoice.

Sacred Heart statue outside the Church of St. Michael, West 34th Street, Manhattan

"Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons?

"My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
nor be weary when reproved by him.
For the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
and chastises every son whom he receives.

"It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

"Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no "root of bitterness" springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled; that no one is sexually immoral or unholy like Esau, who sold his birthright for a single meal. For you know that afterward, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no chance to repent, though he sought it with tears."—Hebrews 12:3-17

Every drop of blood shed by the abortionist's scalpel will have to be repaid.
Perhaps we have been chosen to participate, be God's co-workers, as St. Paul said, in this work of redemption ...

Conversely, if the Butcher from Chicago fails in his bid, then we must raise our voices in the ancient hymns:

Non nobis, Domine, Domine,
non nobis, Domine
Sed nomini,
sed nomini,
tuo da gloriam.

Not to us, Lord,
But to your Name, be all glory.

Sing it, or sing this other ancient hymn for protection and thanksgiving:

Te Deum

TE DEUM laudamus: te Dominum confitemur.
(O GOD, we praise Thee: we acknowledge Thee to be the Lord. )
Te aeternum Patrem omnis terra veneratur.
(Everlasting Father, all the earth doth worship Thee. )
Tibi omnes Angeli; tibi Caeli et universae Potestates;
(To Thee all the Angels, the Heavens and all the Powers, )
Tibi Cherubim et Seraphim incessabili voce proclamant:
(all the Cherubim and Seraphim, unceasingly proclaim: )
Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus, Dominus Deus Sabaoth.
(Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts! )
Pleni sunt caeli et terra maiestatis gloriae tuae.
(Heaven and earth are full of the Majesty of Thy glory. )
Te gloriosus Apostolorum chorus,
(The glorious choir of the Apostles, )
Te Prophetarum laudabilis numerus,
(the wonderful company of Prophets, )
Te Martyrum candidatus laudat exercitus.
(the white-robed army of Martyrs, praise Thee. )
Te per orbem terrarum sancta confitetur Ecclesia,
(Holy Church throughout the world doth acknowledge Thee: )
Patrem immensae maiestatis:
(the Father of infinite Majesty; )
Venerandum tuum verum et unicum Filium;
(Thy adorable, true and only Son; )
Sanctum quoque Paraclitum Spiritum.
(and the Holy Spirit, the Comforter. )
Tu Rex gloriae, Christe.
(O Christ, Thou art the King of glory! )
Tu Patris sempiternus es Filius.
(Thou art the everlasting Son of the Father. )
Tu ad liberandum suscepturus hominem, non horruisti Virginis uterum.
(Thou, having taken it upon Thyself to deliver man, didst not disdain the Virgin's womb. )
Tu, devicto mortis aculeo, aperuisti credentibus regna caelorum.
(Thou overcame the sting of death and hast opened to believers the Kingdom of Heaven. )
Tu ad dexteram Dei sedes, in gloria Patris.
(Thou sittest at the right hand of God, in the glory of the Father. )
Iudex crederis esse venturus.
(We believe that Thou shalt come to be our Judge. )
Te ergo quaesumus, tuis famulis subveni: quos pretioso sanguine redemisti.
(We beseech Thee, therefore, to help Thy servants whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood. )
Aeterna fac cum sanctis tuis in gloria numerari.
(Make them to be numbered with Thy Saints in everlasting glory. )
V. Salvum fac populum tuum, Domine, et benedic hereditati tuae.
(V. Save Thy people, O Lord, and bless Thine inheritance! )
R. Et rege eos, et extolle illos usque in aeternum.
(R. Govern them, and raise them up forever. )
V. Per singulos dies benedicimus te.
(V. Every day we thank Thee. )
R. Et laudamus nomen tuum in saeculum, et in saeculum saeculi.
(R. And we praise Thy Name forever, yea, forever and ever. )
V. Dignare, Domine, die isto sine peccato nos custodire.
(V. O Lord, deign to keep us from sin this day. )
R. Miserere nostri, Domine, miserere nostri.
(R. Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us. )
V. Fiat misericordia tua, Domine, super nos, quemadmodum speravimus in te.
(V. Let Thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, for we have hoped in Thee. )
R. In te, Domine, speravi: non confundar in aeternum.
(R. O Lord, in Thee I have hoped; let me never be put to shame. )

The following is a well known translation of the Te Deum, which, though not literal, preserves much of the spirit and force of the original. Except for the seventh stanza, which is a rendering of verses 20 and 21 by Msgr. Hugh Thomas Henry (1862-1946), it was written by Fr. Clarence Alphonsus Walworth (1820-1900). Sing it:

HOLY God, we praise Thy Name
Lord of all we bow before Thee;
all on earth Thy scepter claim,
all in heaven above adore Thee;
Infinite Thy vast domain,
everlasting is Thy reign.

HARK, the loud celestial hymn
angel choirs above are raising;
Cherubim and Seraphim
in unceasing chorus praising,
fill the heavens with sweet accord;
Holy, Holy, Holy Lord!

LO, the Apostolic train
Join, Thy sacred name to hallow:
prophets swell the loud refrain,
and the white-robbed Martyrs follow;
and, from morn till set of sun,
through the Church the song goes on.

HOLY Father, Holy Son,
Holy Spirit, Three we name Thee,
While in essence only One,
undivided God we claim Thee:
and, adoring, bend the knee
while we own the mystery.

THOU art King of glory, Christ:
Son of God, yet born of Mary;
for us sinners sacrificed,
and to death a tributary:
first to break the bars of death,
Thou has opened heaven to faith.

FROM Thy high celestial home,
Judge of all, again returning,
we believe that Thou shalt come
in the dreaded Doomsday morning;
when Thy voice shall shake the earth,
and the startled dead come forth.

THEREFORE do we pray Thee, Lord:
help Thy servants whom, redeeming
by Thy Precious Blood out-poured,
Thou hast saved from Satan's scheming.
Give to them eternal rest
in the glory of the Blest.

SPARE Thy people, Lord, we pray,
by a thousand snares surrounded:
keep us without sin today,
never let us be confounded.
Lo, I put my trust in Thee;
never, Lord, abandon me.