DAILY CATHOLIC for February 27-March 1
COLUMNS
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To print this page, we recommend you CLICK HERE to go to TEXT ONLY. vol, 9
no. 42

Getting to the
Heart of the Matter

by Sister Mary Lucy Astuto


INTRODUCTION: "Getting to the Heart of the Matter" is what Sister Mary Lucy Astuto pinpoints in every issue when she takes a common sense approach to living our faith with her practical columns. In this issue she nudges us all to focus on Jesus' Passion in order to help us rise above temptation and aid us in maintaining our resolve to fulfill our Lenten resolutions in her column Think Often of His Sufferings

     Her column, along with columns by Father John Hampsch, C.M.F. and Father Stephen Valenta, OFM Conv., provide effective, vital insights into our faith and ways of fulfilling God's Will every day in every way. You can visit Sr. Lucy at her web site for Heart of Mary Ministry at http://www.heartofmaryministry.com or you can reach her at Srmarylucy@aol.com by e-mail.

Think Often of His Sufferings

      Iíve made several Lenten resolutions.† I usually discourage people from making too many, because if they fail to keep them, they will more readily get discouraged.

      But the several resolutions Iíve made are small ones.† I must ask God for the grace to keep even the small ones because of myself† I cannot do it; but with His help I can.

      One of my resolutions is to omit Coffeemate from my coffee every day.† Oh, I LOVE Coffemate in my coffee!† The Vanilla Nut flavor is my favorite!† I also want not to play solitaire on the computer (or anywhere) and not eat any sweets be they candy or sweet rolls.

      With Godís help I think I can do the above.† I used to have WILL POWER, but in my older age I say I have WILT†POWER!

      Yet all of the above are things I will DENY myself.† It is good, as well, to do something thatís positive for Lent and what I have selected for myself is to read something about Our Lordís Passion every day.† There is nothing better to strengthen oneís Faith in Godís love for us and how important to Him we are.† Furthermore, I remember Jesus telling Sister Faustina:† "If you meditate on My Passion, you will rise above the scorn of men."

      Reading and meditating on the Passion and Death of Our Lord would strengthen us.† It would give us courage to endure our everyday sufferings.† It will strongly remind us that Jesus suffered everything we suffer (except sin).† He endured misunderstanding, contempt, rejection, disbelief, fatigue, cold, abuse -- even from those He helped and cured.

      Reading and meditating on the Passion and Death of Our Lord will also be a strong reminder to us of how horrible sin is and that Jesus endured all to save us from hell.†

      Many people today want to deny the existence of hell or say that hell is on this earth.† We only need to remind ourselves that the children of Fatima and Medjugorje were given a vision of hell and it scared them so much (far worse than any suffering they could endure in this life) that it was a powerful force for them to work out their own salvation and be a part of Godís Salvation Plan for others.

      Hell is a real PLACE!† We have the visions and writings of the saints to confirm this and, of course, Our Lordís own Words.

      The choice I have made for reading is Volume 5 of Maria Valtortaís THE POEM OF THE MAN-GOD.† Iíve read from it before and aside from the Scriptures there has never been an account of Our Lordís sufferings that has affected me more.

      The first time I ever read from it, as to what happened to Our Lord before He was crucified and as He hung on the cross, I was affected so powerfully for a full day.

      I highly recommend it to you and urge you not to be influenced by the criticisms (even from good people) this book has sometimes received.† It has been read by many reputable theologians who find in it nothing contrary to the teachings of the Church.

      Have a holy Lent with good sacrifices and good reading! God bless you!


February 27 - March 1, 1998     volume 9, no. 42
Sister Lucy Column




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