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Whatever villages or towns or countryside Jesus entered, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak; and as many as touched it were healed.
When I was younger, I was very much turned off by the old people in my church. Actually, I was turned off by the way they showed their devotion to God. I didn’t particularly like it when I saw the old ladies rubbing the feet or touching the hands of the beautiful statutes in our Church. Did they think they were going to get something out of it? I thought it was downright silly and ignorant. I didn’t like it at all when people told me that they had a relic of such and such saint in their home or went to visit such and such relic at this or that Church. Finally, I was always embarrassed when Protestants and atheists would point this fact out to me. I would respond by telling them that these people simply didn’t know the Catholic faith or scripture.
Now I know that I was being silly and ignorant of the Catholic faith and of scripture.
Protestants love to point out our strange devotions. But there is nothing strange about them, for they are very natural, supernatural and scriptural. As the crowds were pushing and shoving, waving and cheering to see and to touch Jesus of Nazareth, who was both God and man, they did the same exact thing when it came to his Apostles. In Acts, the ill were hoping beyond reason to be healed by Peter’s shadow (cf. Acts 5:15), and we know the Lord gave extraordinary gifts of healing to Paul. In fact, it is specifically mentioned that Paul’s handkerchief and apron were often brought to the sick and they were healed (cf. Acts 19:11).
So the question really isn’t whether or not to have devotion to the saints or to their images or to their relics. The question is why atheists and Protestants won’t do this for God but will do it for Madonna and country?
If you watched yesterday’s Super Bowl then you saw for yourself how the crowds were going wild as they were cheering and waving at Madonna. Funny isn’t it? But woe to us if we wave and cheer or go wild (in a holy manner J) when the Holy Father walks by! It seems very ridiculous especially when you consider how much the Holy Father has done for humanity and how much Madonna has done for her vanity! I would surely bow down and reach for the tassel of Christ’s Vicar than reach for something hideous that belongs to her. I would proudly wave my hands and scream my guts out for the crippled and elderly but Blessed John Paul II than watch a fifty-three year old woman nearly stumble on stage as she tries to revive her short and almost forgotten career. I would gladly do it over and over again. I would gladly salute the Pope as he waved at me than stand like a dummy as a celebrity waved his middle finger at me!
Come on now! What exactly do atheists and secularists offer me? The lowest form of humanity! Why in the world would I kill myself for a seasonal prize when I could die to myself for an eternal prize!
I would gladly bow down and lay my life down for a shy and humble Saint than for a very public and the of best of best of candidates, celebrities, artists, rationalists, secularists, atheists, humanists, animalists, environmentalists, psychologists, or philanthropists this world could ever produce!