Saturday, September 20, 2014
Friday, September 19, 2014
Sadly, nowadays, St. Joseph is most often invoked by those trying to sell a home – yet, he is the most powerful Saint, after Our Lady, that has ever been. For, St. Thomas Aquinas wrote: “Some Saints are privileged to extend to us their patronage with particular efficacy in certain needs, but not in others; but our holy patron St. Joseph has the power to assist us in all cases, in every necessity, in every undertaking.” Later, St. Teresa of Avila repeated much the same sentiment: “To other Saints Our Lord seems to have given power to succor us in some special necessity—but to this glorious Saint, I know by experience, He has given the power to help us in all.” And in our own time, St. John Paul believed: “…that by reflection upon the way that Mary’s spouse shared in the divine mystery, the Church - on the road towards the future with all of humanity - will be enabled to discover ever anew her own identity within this redemptive plan, which is founded on the mystery of the Incarnation.” Therefore, let us look to Joseph, the “most chaste” guardian of Jesus and Mary, to aid all of us with the battle against sexual addictions.
The Seven Sorrows and Joys of St. Joseph
The prayers in italics are taken from the original text; the meditations are guidelines for brief reflection after reading each Sorrow and Joy. Most effectively, the prayers should be said every day, but are also incredibly powerful when directly under the threat of sexual temptation. And, although this exercise is designed for men, women with sexual addictions and lesbians could adapt the Seven Sorrows and Joys of Mary in the same manner.
(Recite 1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary, and 1 Glory Be after each number)
1. St. Joseph, Chaste Spouse of the Holy Mother of God, by the Sorrow with which your heart was pierced at the thought of a cruel separation from Mary, and by the deep Joy that you felt when the angel revealed to the ineffable mystery of the Incarnation, obtain for us from Jesus and Mary, the grace of surmounting all anxiety. Win for us from the Adorable Heart of Jesus the unspeakable peace of which He is the Eternal Source.
(Meditation: Think back to how it felt when your sex and porn addiction separated you from God and the one’s you love; how you turned to sex and pornography for comfort and fulfillment during times of anxiety, instead of turning to God; the precious time you spent looking at pornography; the shame and guilt you felt afterwards. Then, remember how Our Lord always welcomes you back to the fold; and forgives all the sins of the past. Have Trust in Him, and He will heal you. Know that: “They that are whole, need not the physician: but they that are sick. I came not to call the just, but sinners to penance.”) (Lk: 5:31)
2. St. Joseph, Foster-Father of Jesus, by the bitter Sorrow which your heart experienced in seeing the Child Jesus lying in a manger, and by the Joy which you felt in seeing the Wise men recognize and adore Him as their God, obtain by your prayers that our heart, purified by your protection, may become a living crib, where the Savior of the world may receive and bless our homage.
(Meditation: Think back to the coldness of your heart when the only thing you could think about was satisfying your lusts and desires for pornography and sex; how you felt alone and abandoned. Then, remember your joy when you were an innocent child and looked upon the nativity scene with awe and wonder. Look again at the innocent Christ-child, and know – that He shivered in the cold so that you would never know loneliness again.)
3. St. Joseph, by the Sorrow with which your heart was pierced at the sight of the Blood which flowed from the Infant Jesus in the Circumcision, and by the Joy that inundated your soul at your privilege of imposing the sacred and mysterious Name of Jesus, obtain for us that the merits of this Precious Blood may be applied to our souls, and that the Divine Name of Jesus may be engraved forever in our hearts.
(Meditation: Think back to how you abused the wonderful gift of your body in pursuit of selfish gratification; how you looked with perverse desire upon the sacred bodies of others; and how you forgot that you were made in the image of God. Then, remember the first time you called out to Our Lord Jesus Christ – and how He consoled and comforted you. Remember when you first returned to the Sacraments; and again took within yourself the precious Body and Blood of Our Savior; ache once again for that moment, when you can receive Salvation at the Supreme Sacrifice of the Mass; to stand once again at Calvary.)
4. St. Joseph, by the Sorrow when the Lord declared that the soul of Mary would be pierced with a sword of sorrow, and by thy Joy when holy Simeon added that the Divine Infant was to be the resurrection of many, obtain for us the grace to have compassion on the sorrows of Mary, and share in the salvation which Jesus brought to the earth.
(Meditation: Think back to how your addiction hurt others; how you abused or neglected your wife, your children, your girlfriend, your parents, and God Himself. Then, remember the miracle of Easter – how Our Lord endured the agony and pain of crucifixion, for your sake, and how you were redeemed through His Sacrifice of Love.)
5. St. Joseph, by thy Sorrow when told to fly into Egypt, and by thy Joy in seeing the idols overthrown at the arrival of the living God, grant that no idol of earthly affection may any longer occupy our hearts, but being like you entirely devoted to the service of Jesus and Mary, we may live and happily die for them alone.
(Meditation: Think back to the time when you worshipped the false-gods of lust and perversity; how you bowed before them; how you spent hours seeking them in magazines and books or on the internet; and how empty and disappointed you felt afterwards. Then, remember the exaltation and peace when you receive the Sacraments: the elation of the Eucharist, and the tranquility of reconciliation through Penance.)
6. St. Joseph, by the Sorrow of your heart caused by the fear of the tyrant Archelaus and by the Joy in sharing the company of Jesus and Mary at Nazareth, obtain for us, that disengaged from all fear, we may enjoy the peace of a good conscience and may live in security, in union with Jesus and Mary, experiencing the effect of your salutary assistance at the hour of our death.
(Meditation: Think back to when you were fearful and sought solace in pornography or sex; how the fear was only heightened by the experience; and how it was never alleviated; how porn left you feeling sick and restless. Then, remember how you felt good and protected as a child when you were in your father’s arms, or when your mother tucked you into bed, or when a friend helped you during a difficult time. Never forget, that all these earthly emotions and attachments are nothing compared to the all-encompassing Love of Jesus Christ and the eternal bliss you will one day experience with Him.)
7. St. Joseph, by the bitter Sorrow with which the loss of the Child Jesus crushed your heart, and by the holy Joy which inundated your soul in recovering the Treasure on entering the Temple, we supplicate you not to permit us to lose our Savior Jesus by sin. Yet, should this misfortune befall us, grant that we may share your eagerness in seeking Him, and obtain for us the grace to find Him again, ready to show us His great mercy, especially at the hour of death; so that we may pass from this life to enjoy His presence in heaven, there to sing with His divine mercies forever.
(Meditation: Lastly, think back to the desolation and emptiness that filled your life when you were a complete slave to porn and sex; how you lived merely for another release with another film, video-clip, or sex partner; how you always searched for the next big sexual high; how you were duped into thinking that you found it; then, realizing too late, that the promise of happiness was a hollow lie. Then, remember how amazing it felt when you went to Confession for the first time after many years; how heavy and over-burdened you felt before, and then the lightness and serenity that enveloped your entire soul once all those sins had been forgiven.)
Let Us Pray
O God, Who in Your ineffable Providence has granted to choose Blessed Joseph to be the Spouse of Your most holy Mother; grant, we beseech You, that we may deserve to have him for our intercessor in heaven who on earth we venerate as our holy protector: Who lives and reigns forever and ever. Amen.
Back in 2003, the aging singer Madonna passed on her royal pop-diadem to reigning teen queen Britney Spears during a ritualized lesbian kiss ceremony at the MTV Music Video Awards. Over 10 years later, the perverse sacrament has been replayed with another celebrity in the twilight of her celebrity and a young neophyte: this times its Jennifer Lopez (45) and Iggy Azalea (24.) In the video for the song “Booty,” taken from Lopez’s album “A.K.A.” that was released back in June; which had performed dismally on all the Billboard charts; the weakest selling album of her career; Lopez and Azalea perform several mock sex acts. Just 20 years ago, this would have been considered soft-core porn, worthy of a late-night showing on cable, or an inclusion in Madonna’s X-rated book “Sex.” Today, it’s certainly provocative, but not really considered shocking. In reality, it’s the most corrupt form of entertainment: pornography masquerading as innocent fun. For, “the devil's finest trick is to persuade you that he does not exist.” And, now, porn no longer exists.
Thursday, September 18, 2014
“Consider that God wants to fill you up with honey, but if you are already full of vinegar where will you put the honey? What was in the vessel must be emptied out; the vessel itself must be washed out and made clean and scoured, hard work though it may be, so that it be fit for something else, whatever it may be.” ~ St. Augustine
When I scurried back to Christ, out of fear for my life, I thought everything from that point onwards would be really easy: life would be one blissful locution after another. But, what I did not understand was that my time in the world had left me damaged and dirty. I was literally ripped apart. In a very strange sense, I still wanted God. Only, the more I tried - the more I pushed Him away; held on to my old ways of thinking; and purposefully allowed the Lord to pass right through me; I retained nothing. I was hate-filled and terrified. I wanted safety, but I did not feel secure enough to reveal myself: wounds and all. For a while, I liked God less. He hadn’t performed a miracle on me; He didn’t lift me into the clouds; He hadn’t protected me. I blamed Him for much.
Soon after returning to the Sacraments, I bought myself a rather nice rosary: with crystal beads and sterling silver crucifix. I liked this rosary; it felt good and heavy in my hands. Then, somehow I misplaced it. I looked in earnest, but it never turned up – I thought I inadvertently left it in some church. About a month later, it inexplicably reappeared in my clothes dryer. It must have been in some pair of pants or jacket that I just washed. I heard the clanking noise from the machine and found the rosary intact, but the beads were somewhat chipped and scratched. I was thankful, yet, when I touched it, the beads no longer felt smooth and reassuring, but rough and almost sharp. Nevertheless, I had a sentimental attachment to this rosary, and I went back to praying with it. Gradually, the beads became smoother as they worked through my fingers.
Now, this incident reminds me of when the Lord saved my life. For, this was not so much a singular event, but a process. Like sea glass, that is tossed about by the waves, and ground down by the action of the sand and salt water, we too must be refined and made soft to the touch. This buffing procedure is time consuming and painful. For, there is a stripping away, almost like a spiritual acid wash that must take place; as we are covered in years of disobedience and perversity. The reason this hurts is because we fight against it; we struggle when swept up by the pounding waves. What we should do is allow ourselves to be inundated by Him; completely annihilated by His love. Only, this requires an extreme amount of Trust. And, when we have given our life over to the world, either in a porn or sex addiction, we are left self-guarded and skeptical.
Slowly, I realized that the more I fought against what the Lord was doing with me, the more exhausted I became. And, as the once damaged rosary beads slipped repeatedly through my hand and became easier to hold, so too did I. Seemingly, it took forever, as I am obstinate and prideful. At first, I thought that I could do it on my own; and in a less stressful and more comfortable manner. I would prove my worth to God; I would be the champion. Not surprisingly, I couldn’t do it. Although I had gotten myself into this mess, I was powerless to get out. The problem was just too big. And, after all those years of pretending, I gave up the endless thrashing, and decided to let the winds of God take me where He wanted. He had been waiting; and the struggle had crushed me down; made my edges less jagged; and made me more humble. I could listen, and I was willing to accept Him. The battle had brought me low, as one failure piled upon another. The fight had been tough, mostly because of my over-inflated sense of self-reliance and constant vacillating between the two worlds of good and evil; but somehow along the way, I was able to share in Christ’s cross, and this caused me to oftentimes huddle closer to Him; for, I saw Him suffer too; and He became less frightful; less judgmental, and more Forgiving in my eyes. Then, I Loved Him; and I knew that He Loved me. That was the miracle.
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Researchers at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in London conducted a retrospective study of the clinic’s patients: 82% of men reported both insertive and receptive anal intercourse without a condom; 27% reported group sex, 25% reported fisting, 21% reported any recreational drug use, and 14% reported intercourse without a condom while on drugs; about 9% reported injection drug use. Why are so many gay men still taking such great risks with their lives? A possible answer: a new study, published in the “Annals of Behavioral Medicine” of gay and bisexual men who reported at least one instance of condomless anal sex in the last 30 days, found that the “desire for intimacy” was the main motivator regarding a decision not to use condoms. Sadly, because the gay mind-set is completely material based, i.e. no recognition of life’s transcendence, gay men will most often equate any form of companionship, intimacy, and love with sexual contact. It’s a false religion of the physical; and for the majority of gay men: sodomy is the sacrament. In the devil’s twisted plans, he has made it sickly analogous to the Catholic Sacraments; i.e. many martyrs (St. Tarcisius) have died for love of the Blessed Eucharist, while gay men willing die in order to not abandon anal sex. The difference is: one is true salvation and the other is a death with no meaning.
Link to article abstract: