"And I beheld, and heard the voice of one eagle flying through the midst of heaven,
saying with a loud voice: Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth....
[Apocalypse (Revelation) 8:13]

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Fr. Voigt, "The Kingdom we long for"

Fr. Voigt, "The Kingdom we long for"

The boy looked at the door and saw inscribed:  "Da mihi animas; coeterae tolle." (Give me souls; take the rest).  As he entered the office there was kindly Don Bosco to whom the boy remarked, "Around here you deal in souls."  Exactly correct the saint responded and said "Let me form you into a saint pleasing to Almighty God."  The boy was Dominic Savio and he achieved the goal of Don Bosco's mission.  Today sanctity is needed more than at any other time in the church's history.  This is the age of the great apostasy and as the evil one pours out the demonic spirit everywhere so God must pour out His Holy Spirit into our hearts to achieve the kingdom of heaven.  So consider the five ages of man and the response that is necessary for our salvation.

In the first age called childhood we find a relationship with the beginning of life in the period reaching from Adam to Noah.
God begins to reveal Himself in contemplation to the child whose age is from three to nine.  In this age the child as Adam begins to develop a conscience that speaks to God.  It is a wise parent that establishes a special prayer spot in the house with a statue of the Good Shepherd or of the Sacred Heart.  When the child goes to this spot he/she can speak to the Lord in the way of holy childhood.  No one ought to disturb this fledgling life of prayer.  It is the beginning of contemplation.  It will help the child through the moods that so often take over.  

In the second age which is adolescents we enter into the historical period of Noah to Abraham.  The convenant relationship established in the old testament now enters the young person's life in the form of reason.  Don Bosco called for an education that was based on Reason-Religion-Kindness.  If the young person recognizes this in the adults that surround him/her then there will be peace (not rebellion) in the family.  Parents need to be in control  of their passions (emotions) in order to allow reason and their faith to determine their guidance of the young son or daughter.  Reason presents the youth with the truth that is supported by their consciences which are attuned to the moral law presented by the life of our Lord.  Their goal is established as the attainment of heaven in order to see the great Beatific Vision.

With the third age the young adult appears with the strength of character to do battle with the world in which they live.  This age models itself upon the movement from Abraham, the Father of Faith, to Moses, the law giver.  During this time of our lives true strength comes from our obedience to the law of God.  Against goodness there can be no law but rather commendation.
Faith supports the divine law; and that divine law encourages the young adult to work for the good of the society in which they live.  If they have learned from their parents how to control their emotions then their actions will be reasonable and modeled upon our Lord for He is the norm of our eternal life.  They are well on  their way to heaven because they are walking in the footsteps of the Master.

After the young adult we come to the mature adult  who is passed his/her prime and now begins to realize that  they are waning in strength.  From Moses we come to the person of Jesus.  Here we find that the law will give way to grace. The freedom that comes from the Truth gives us the power to conquer the desire for this world and seek to develop the life of virtue in preparation for the eternity promised for those who come to love God.  This is ultimately the peak of the fifth age, the age of the Apostles, in which the word of God goes out to all the nations.  The Gentiles receive this Word with enthusiasm while the Jews are left to wonder at the freedom of the children of God.  Here we find the conflict of the Jews who would not recognize the Savior and the Gentile who took up the Gospel with delight.  

In the mind of the Jew this world is their heaven and they must control it or lose it.  Throughout the ages the popes have constantly and consistently argued that the Jew must be subordinated to the Church.  The popes have said that the Jew should not have property or any means to control others.  Some suggested that they be isolated on an island.  In the meantime the Gentile relishes the Catholic faith as the means to come to the Beatific Vision.  Name the saints who have gone before us and realize that miracles attest to their holiness.  Their commitment to the Church militant is eternal and powerful.  Our Blessed Mother, the nine choirs of angels, the confessors, the doctors, the martyrs, the virgins, etc. all call upon us to join them by placing the kingdom of God within our hearts.  Let us not fall prey to the devil and his machinations.  Let us hold to our Catholic faith.  Love it, study it and pass it on to as many as possible.

In the hearts of Jesus, Mary and Joseph,

Fr. Richard Voigt

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