Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Mt 25:1-13 Ridi, Pagliaccio!

Mt 25:1-13  Ridi, Pagliaccio! 
Jesus told his disciples this parable:  “The Kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom.  Five of them were foolish and five were wise.  The foolish ones, when taking their lamps brought no oil with them, but the wise brought flasks of oil with their lamps.”
The wise one is the prudent one, and the prudent one is the one who learns from the past.
I am so glad I stayed awake last night to watch the Republican National Convention (RNC).  Not so much for the speeches or guest appearances and hoopla, but because I had forgotten that Cardinal Dolan would be giving the closing benediction.  I listened intently to what he had to say.  But I must admit, while he was praying, curiosity got the better part of me.  I began to wonder whether the other stations were televising this.  So, I began to flip through the channels.  To my astonishment, all the news channels were televising it, except for one:  MSNBC.    
Of course, I didn’t really expect MSNBC to break from their goal of being the nation’s premier humanistic and anti-Christian channel.  It’s hard to deny their cynical, harsh and judgmental attitude towards Christianity in the public square.  Last night, was just another example of that.  I know what you are thinking: Maybe, they were giving their viewers an alternative.  Maybe.  But an alternative to what?  To reality?  To an inconvenient truth?  That a major political party still invokes All-mighty God’s protection and help?  That the Catholic Church continues to be a major player in our God-forbidden society?  That Roman Catholic Bishops are still highly respected in America for their defense of the sacredness of life, marriage and family?
Let us see what MSNBC will do when Cardinal Dolan gives the closing benediction for the Democratic National Convention (DNC).  I have to admit, what I found even more interesting than all of this, is that soon after Cardinal Dolan accepted the RNC’s invitation to pray, he asked the DNC if they wanted him to do the same thing.  They declined the offer, and then immediately reversed their decision once they learned he had accepted the RNC’s offer.  Now that is interesting…
Ridi, Pagliaccio!    [Laugh clown, laugh!!!] 
St. Paul writes, “Where is the wise one?  Where is the scribe?  Where is the great debater of this age?  Has not God made the wisdom of the world foolish?” 
You bet he has!  And how it makes us laugh at such spectacles.  Not too long ago, I was speaking to a college freshman.  He told me that he is starting to believe that the world was created by accident.  I asked them if he knew what the word accident meant.  He said, “Something that happens by accident.”  I couldn’t believe it...a college student.  I felt pity for him.  So, I helped him.  An accident is an occurrence without an intention.  In other words, it’s like creating something without conceiving it.  Do you really believe this about our world?
Then I got to thinking.  Maybe this explains how art has become an accident; how we have gone from Michelangelo to Jack the dripper! 
Long ago, scientists decided to experiment with nature so that they could control it, do violence to it, twist it and finally subdue it in order to dominate it.  Social engineers have been trying to do the same thing, but to us!  And the results have been exactly the same.  Devastating!  Instead of making our world better, we’ve actually made it worse.  Instead of making man better, we’ve actually made him a lot worse.
Of course it is all by "accident".  They just keep creating without conceiving!  Or better yet, they keep creating by twisting.  Everything they call "new" is nothing more than the old “twisted”.  For example, a homosexual marriage is nothing more than a twisted marriage.  Nasal sex (not to say something already in existence) would be nothing more than twisted sex.  The “new family” is nothing more than a twisted family.  A human clone is nothing more than a controlled man.
We think the world we live in needs improvement.  Ridi, Pagliaccio! 
Stay awake!  Stay tuned!
“The foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.”  (1Cor 1:25)


  1. LOL!! Oh my, I've never heard the term "nasal sex" to mean something different. My face is so bright red right now. I feel the heat on my cheeks. I never know what term you will come up with next!!

    Michangelo to Jack the "dripper"...LOL!!!

    Father, in all seriousness, I agree with you on how twisted our world has become. I could care less about the RNC or DNC conventions though. I heard about the Clint Eastwood's bizarre speech but then how wonderful Cardinal Dolan presented himself. Interesting how foolish a Hollywood celebrity can look and how much better one of Christ's vicars can come across! If only our secular world would figure out the difference.

    Enjoy the Labor Day Weekend.

    Blessings & Peace,


  2. something to think about................;)

    God Bless u Father Alfonse!

    1. We think the world we live in needs improvement. - I agree the world needs improvement. Especially for my children when they become adults and face all this chaos and weird twisted family thing...........

      I will never understand it !

  3. I watched parts of the convention at least the headline acts. I also watched and listened to Cardinal Dolan's benediction. I'm looking forward to his benediction at the DNC, unfortunately I have a feeling the liberals will not show him the respect he deserves.

    As for Mr Eastwood, I thought his act was rather entertaining. But that's a conservative's point of view.


  4. “Let us see what MSNBC will do when Cardinal Dolan gives the closing benediction for the Democratic National Convention (DNC)."

    - Yes, it will be interesting to see.

    "I have to admit, what I found even more interesting than all of this, is that soon after Cardinal Dolan accepted the RNC’s invitation to pray, he asked the DNC if they wanted him to do the same thing. They declined the offer, and then immediately reversed their decision once they learned he had accepted the RNC’s offer. Now that is interesting…”

    - What is also interesting is that the RNC broke with the protocol of having the local Archbishop of the region do the benediction…which is who the DNC had chosen as their Catholic representation. (It seems to me that the RNC had some ulterior motive in courting this particular Cardinal…but that’s just my perception.) So that he may not seem partial to a “major” political party he asked the DNC. Interesting this Cardinal would step on the toes of his peer. So what that he is the president of the Bishop’s conference. His presence there was pastoral…to pray (so he says), so when it comes to those matters he is equal to his counterpart in Tampa and Charlotte….who I’m sure can pray for the people too. The DNC knew that he had accepted the RNC’s offer when they first declined his offer.

    @ Craig –
    “I'm looking forward to his benediction at the DNC, unfortunately I have a feeling the liberals will not show him the respect he deserves.”

    - How rich! But please sleep in peace without that feeling “the liberals” will not show him the respect he deserves. I will be one such “liberal” hanging on his every word and grateful that one of the representatives of my church will be present to pray for those in attendance, TV audience, Web audience & country at large.

    Have the best day!

    1. Sarah. Thank you for the comment. I would like to know where you read this about Cardinal Dolan. I'm asking because I read in the Catholic News Service that before Cardinal Dolan accepted the RNC's invitation, he asked permission from the local Bishop. This is customary. So...he really never stepped on anyone's toes. It's not surprising that the RNC would have asked him since he is the President of the Bishop's Conference. But I am asking where you got this information because I would suspect that they neglected to mention this fact.
      Regardless, thank you for your observation!!! :)

    2. It was an article in the Washington Post. Yes, they missed that bit, so my mistake on that point; he didn't step on anyone's toes! Good looking out and correcting me!

      I think what I was trying to get across was more along the lines of him wanting to be in all the pomp and circumstance(again, my perception), instead of the local Bishop and humbly declining the offer. Especially since he said he was only going there to pray. The local Bishop could have done that. Anyway, I guess six in one hand.....In the end it only matters that a Catholic pastor was there and prayed.

    3. Found another Typo,I THINK ! LOL
      "how we have gone from Michelangelo to Jack the dripper!"

      Do you meant to type : "Jack the Ripper"

      Good Night Father Alfonse !

    4. Not this time. Jackson Pollock is considered a great 20th century American painter . His critics called him Jack the dripper because he would paint by dripping paint.

    5. oh I see!
      Thank you for the insight!I thought you be asleep by now lol!

      Good Night Again Father;)!

    6. I thought I published my reply yesterday. Maybe the second reply I sent overrode the first? Anyhow, I read about the Cardinal in the Washington Post, and yes, they missed the bit that he asked the local Bishop. Good looking out and correcting my mistake.

  5. @Sarah-
    Nothing against you personally. I've witnessed enough hatred from the left against our religion and Christianity in general. From Obamacare mandating companies provide contraception to people dressed as Vaginas boycotting the Republican Convention. Cardinal Dolan mentioned the unborn's right to life in the RNC closing, I'm confident he'll mention it at the DNC closing as well. How will that be received by the left? I guess we will find out this week. Hopefully, my gut instinct will be wrong and you can say "I told you so". I'll be the first to step and and say I was wrong.

    Wonder why the DNC is breaking tradition as well and not having the local Archbishop do the benediction?


    1. I know you have nothing against me personally, and to be clear likewise. I'm not really the 'I told you so' type of personality, so we'll take it as a blessing and victory for the kingdom.

      What really struck me was how you painted a broad brush.....I found it amazing that you would find it hard to believe or have a bad feeling that he would not receive respect or be welcomed as a clergyman. Perhaps somewhere I missed a "conservatives only, others need not apply" sign to be in relationship with Christ, appreciate and adore the most blessed sacrament, believe in His body, soul & divinity, and get passed the gates of heaven.

      "Wonder why the DNC is breaking tradition as well and not having the local Archbishop do the benediction?"

      - I suspect you wouldn't want the person suing you at your party either so it would make sense they first declined his offer.... but I don't know why they agreed with the new arrangement. Perhaps they felt their hands were tied or perhaps out of respect.

    2. Sarah - I like the way you think. I've been meaning to tell you for a while now. :)

      "Perhaps somewhere I missed a "conservatives only, others need not apply sign" to be in relationship with Christ, appreciate and adore the most blessed sacrament, believe in His body, soul & divinity, and get passed the gates of heaven."

      I have to agree with you. Living here in the "bible belt" with conservatism literally slammed down our throats from "caring" politicians and clergy one may think his/her moderate or liberal beliefs taint our relationship with Jesus. Our personal political views should not be a deciding factor in our love for Christ and the Eucharist. Shame on people who judge someone who is not pro life or 100% in agreement with all of the Church's teachings. Honestly, I'm quite tired of the polarization in the Church. I get frustrated with the pro-life agenda seen as more important than many social justice issues that are plaguing America today. (I do not recall ever reading a social justice theme on this blog. I suspect Father and his target audience don't want to hear it. Way too "liberal" in content.....) Yes, I understand we need to protect all human life but not only the unborn babies. Take care of the elderly, the poor, the handicapped, and the mentally ill, too.

      I'm sure Cardinal Dolan will receive a warm response at the DNC. As for why the new arrangement was agreed upon, I suspect it may be an attempt to get some of the Catholic Dems who may be on the fence to vote for Obama again. Who really knows....It's all political.



    3. Ahhhh, but for Christians and people of many faiths, the pro-life agenda should be the single most important issue......without recognizing the sanctity of life, all the way around, we are a doomed society. (Go ahead and tell me it's just my opinion. I know some of you who post here will anyway. But I guarantee I do not stand alone.) Its sad to read that anyone could be tired of hearing about it. We the people, whether or not we meant to, have made politics and morality to be one in the same on many topics, so this is exactly why the "life first" topic is constantly in conversation.

      "Thou shalt not kill." - spoken plain and simple for anyone to understand.

    4. Out of all due respect, Anonymous, I know you and others feel the same way. I appreciate the conversation. :)

      I agree politics and morality have become one and the same. Shouldn't the protection of ALL human life be defended regardless of what stage: the embryo and fetus, the abused child, the warring soldier fighting for human rights, the poverty stricken family, or the eldery person thrown away to rot in a nursing home? I find it deeply sad that a few good intentioning Christians appear to care more about the pre-born baby than they do their own living children and grandchildren; brothers and sisters; friends and family. Is an innocent new life somehow better than an older, already-born, existing life?

      I never said I was tired of hearing about the pro life agenda. I'm tired of the Church being so divided on prolife and social justice issues which should be given equal importance. Life is precious and no one should suffer poverty, alienation, abuse, neglect, exploitation, and inequality. We want peace by removing all of the abortion mills. However, do we truly desire peace among our neighbors of different cultures and equality for all?

      "Thou shalt not kill" does not apply to only babies. It's applies to all of God's creation. (Some would argue the Animal Kingdom, too. But I won't go there. I know Father isn't too fond of PETA or the animal rights cause. I think it's an interesting study in terms of how we treat other humans and how humans treat animals.) We should not kill each other in unjust war. We should not kill our children because they have a deformity. We should not kill the homeless person down the street because we don't feed them. We should not kill our neighbor who is of a different culture or religion. "Thou shalt not kill" crosses the spectrum of both pro life and social justice causes.

      I sometimes wonder if many Americans are simply ignorant to social justice issues. Thank the Lord we have Religious sisters throughout our country who work hard to fight for peace, an end to violence, and an end to poverty. All in the name of affirming life!! I've recently become acquainted with the lovely Ursuline community, and my heart goes out to all the good work the Sisters do all over the world. Their focus is clearly on Christ and helping the human condition.

      Have a Blessed Sunday.



    5. I think you missed my point when I said " sanctity of life, all the way around."

      Speaking of war - sometimes war is inevitable whether or not we agree with why we go to war or not. The loss of life is terribly sad, but let's face it, world peace seems light years away.

      I didn't feel it necessary to go into great detail about the commandment, but you did it for me. So when I said pro-life, I meant it as "all the way around" and not just the unborn babies.

      However when it comes to our government handouts, etc., they've gone way too far. So now people who live off us tax payers are not required to work? Tell me that's okay. I don't mind helping those who can't help themselves due to serious health issues, but for those who want to live in the streets because they're too lazy to work? I'm sorry, but giving them everything they need isn't my idea of feeding the poor. I often volunteer at a soup kitchen and see some of both examples I mentioned. I see some with children who are obviously hungry, and I see many people who are missing something upstairs, and I see nice new smartphones on many of folks who come in, and I see people who are incredibly overweight, and I see people who are strung out on drugs. I do my best not to judge, but I guarantee 3/4 of the people we feed are abusing the system.

      Social justice....... That's a loaded couple of words in my opinion.

  6. My apologies...I missed the pro-life "all the way around" point. I don't mean to get you upset. I don't want to fight. I won't discuss this sensitive subject any further.

    Social justice is definitely a four letter word on this blog. I see Father isn't chiming in either. So he obviously doesn't approve or flat out doesn't care.




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