DAILY CATHOLIC     CORPUS CHRISTI WEEKEND     June 12-14, 1998     vol. 9, no. 114


To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO
          With the messages for the world having been concluded three years ago, slowly the public "Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart" has been able to return to the fullness of being Cyndi Cain, wife and mother (roles she never abandoned even for a moment during the public years). However, after much prayer and discernment, she feels strongly that there is much God wishes her to share, for He continually teaches us in our hearts and with the grace of the Holy Spirit, we are to share, to learn, to grow and to be there for one another, as He is always there for us.

          In each weekend issue she hopes to find the time in a busy schedule of caring for a sick child, schooling another son, and the regular work of keeping up a home not to mention helping with the ministry, to write a few lines in sharing with all the experiences and lessons learned in her own introspection. Cyndi has chosen to call her few words, humble and poor in the face of the Almighty, "SYMPHONY OF SUFFERING", for He has placed these words in her heart. To suffer: How all hate the thought, and how, when one is a mother who is faced with the onset of an illness for which the cure may be years away we feel our hearts break in many places. Yet, God hears a beautiful melody here. The angels hear it, too, and so do the saints. The melody reaches to the Heavens and joins with the unending chorus of all the hosts of Heaven praising God. It is Cyndi's sincerest hope that perhaps, together with the reader, we can take our sufferings, which are different yet similar, and place them into this great hymn of praise to the Creator, our Lord, God and Savior, Jesus Christ, and learn to make beautiful music unto the Lord. Below is her fifth stanza.

Some notes can be pretty flat in the Symphony of Suffering
part one

          Christ told each one of us that unless we pick up our cross and follow Him, we would not gain eternal life.

          He also said that He would never give a cross to anyone that the person was not able to carry with Him, with and through His graces.

          He never said, though, that the cross(es) wouldn't or shouldn't hurt. After all, He hurt, He wept, He sorrowed, and He allowed others to grieve, to weep, to sigh deeply and trudge onward with a heart that was both overburdened, and yet peaceful in the midst of the onslaught of life. He further called out to all, "Come to Me, all you who are weary, for My Yoke is easy, and My burden light."

          He tests us. He perfects us. He wants us to resemble Him, and He suffered more than we can possibly imagine. That Perfect Suffering is part of the Father's plan for Salvation, and we have a part to play in this symphony as well. It's neither a melody that any earthly orchestra will play, nor one that will appear someday on a CD, or audiotape. It won't be advertised as a Pay-Per-View special, like Yani or Riverdance, or the like. No, this melody goes on continuously in a Divine Orchestra, and we're as much a part of it as the angels and saints and the suffering souls in Purgatory. Without our complimentary melody, the fullness of the Father's Plan, the Redemptive Suffering of Christ, remains unfinished.

          Having taken a personal vow of poverty more than seven and a half years ago, my husband and I have done what any parents would do - we've seen to our son's care, regardless of the material cost to us and to our family. In the course of just three months, we've realized, as our son's on-going care has drained what little reserves we had managed to store up in these seven and a half years, that we were faced with some really tough decisions regarding our future, regarding our ability as parents to provide the necessities of life for our sons and for ourselves, while still going forward in faith, hope and love of God.

          Now, near the middle of the month of June, and our son faces yet another hospitalization because his condition is certainly not any better, and shows signs of worsening as the side effects of heavy medication are beginning to show, we realize that we are in a very real position of losing the home we are renting. We have struggled with the Social Services Department of this County and State, and have found it not only personally humiliating, but also an eye-opener in general.

          At first, I must admit that I was repulsed to even be there, filling out endless paperwork, talking with caseworkers, and pleading for them to understand that we have an on-going medical emergency, that we are in need of assistance at this time, and would these people please care enough to treat us, and therefore our sons, with some dignity and respect.

          We're just another case number in a seemingly endless number of case numbers. We're being made to jump through hoops, to "prove" not once or twice, but numerous times, the factual status of our financial situation. We have sat for endless hours in a crowded room, with many others in the same, or worse, situation than we are, and I've come to find that I'm praying for these other people and learning how to see Christ in them without any judgment. I'm even coming to pray for and love with Christ's love those who work in the Social Services Department, because they're victims of unjust and unfeeling laws that govern what they say and do at any given moment.

          Paperwork fills my days. It's taken me more time to do this and it takes time away from the care I must give to our oldest son. It has caused me to neglect the schooling of our youngest son, and has led me to "brain burn-out" which is my humble definition of coping with one crisis, while being paper-worked to death.

          Sitting in the Social Services Offices, seeking aid, has given me a very realistic picture and feeling of what "poverty" really is, what "homelessness" is, and knowing that my husband and I are faced with this real possibility in a very short time.

          I have seen unreasonable men and women, even incompetent ones, sitting behind plexi-glass partitions, reviewing our application, and demanding that before our case can be granted, we will be run through hoops and rings at their beckoning. My husband, who has worked selflessly for over eight years as the Executive Director of Mir-A-Call Center, and all for Love of God, a man who has worked so many hours at this task that no one would believe the hours he's put in, a man who has always been there for me, for his sons, for his family, is now, at the not-very-young age of 55, being told by them he can no longer continue as Executive Director and Editor in a ministry for God and a ministry that has been a labor of love for him. Rather they insist he must pursue any work available and to take whatever he can find, regardless of his God-given talents. All because the ministry can no longer afford to pay him the minimum salary he has willingly agreed to for eight years, a salary that has always met standard poverty standards in the United States. Yet, we have budgeted over these eight years to eek out a living while being fulfilled, not temporarily, but spiritually rewarded. Because the apathy has squeezed this apostolate where hardly any donations are now coming in, the ministry can no longer justify a salary for him. Only through the generosity of our readers will this turn around.

          Through these recent experiences with Social Service workers, I've discovered they don't care and don't understand that he, at his age, is no longer employable in this modern age and with the cry for young workers who have longevity on the job. These same Social Service workers don't care that I must be at home with our two sons, particularly for our oldest son, who needs around-the-clock care. I, too, must look for work, any work, or our application will not be considered.

          It's interesting to note, rather very sad, that we have even contacted Catholic Charities to discover to our chagrin that there are no programs for families in a crisis. O, if I were a single mom, then it would be different. If I were to "divorce" my husband, making him a single parent, then it would also be different for him. But the fact that we have chosen, despite the difficulties, to love and respect our marriage vows and to fulfill our responsibilities before God toward one another and our children, doesn't count for anything in this world. In fact, when I look at the overall picture of all these "social programs," I realize that morality, the "family unit", and good old-fashioned morals and love, are not an economic bargaining chip, as they should be. Rather, I discover, to my dismay and horror, that such values and deeply felt love are a debit rather than an asset.

          To Love God, to love the marriage vows, to honor your children to the point of having nothing left in the world, means nothing anymore. Well, it will always mean something to us and regardless of what lies ahead, we know Jesus will not give us a cross too great to carry. Tonight, before you go to bed, say a little prayer for our family. We'll be doing the same for you. And if you would like to help this ministry, in dire need of a transfusion, you can make a contribution by clicking on WE NEED YOUR HELP.

Cyndi Cain

June 12-14, 1998       volume 9, no. 114
Today's Catholic Pewpoint Editorial


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