Archive for January, 2016

January 31, 2016

Inspiration

Forenote:

I am working on making my Divine Will page, www.DSDOConnor.com/DivineWill into a compilation of resources and comprehensive introduction to Luisa’s revelations. If directing someone you’d like to introduce to the Divine Will to a 90 page PDF (my Ebook) might be a bit much, feel free to direct him there instead. From that page, one can choose either brief overviews or more in-depth explorations of Luisa’s writings.

 

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Dear Friends,

How much admonishing I do on this blog!

And yet, admonishment without inspiration is nothing but Jansenism. Therefore I would like to bring you several brief video clips that I have often used to bolster my own courage and inspiration from time to time.

God knows we are all weak creatures, ever so inclined toward slothfulness; so He gives us many ways to pluck up courage and respond to our callings with zeal. Jesus said to Luisa Piccarreta “My daughter, don’t you know that discouragement kills souls more than all other vices?  Therefore, courage, courage, because just as discouragement kills, courage revives, and is the most praiseworthy act that the soul can do, because while feeling discouraged, from that very discouragement she plucks up courage...” Jesus also told St. Faustina that discouragement is the greatest obstacle to holiness.

Therefore, be zealous. Especially during this Holy Year. And let these clips help you. When you feel discouragement creeping in; or perhaps even starting to utterly overwhelm you, then say a prayer and perhaps give one (or more) of these a watch. So long as the virtue of moderation is observed, do not hesitate to watch them whenever you feel the need. Just be sure that every ounce of the inspiration you receive from them is not permitted to be channeled into some vain or proud motive, but is instead held captive for Christ.

Finally, please be advised that, while I would never post a clip that violates my beliefs in what should and should not be portrayed in film, nevertheless much of what follows is not for children and not for the faint-hearted. Also, there are spoilers; if you have not seen (but do plan to see) a movie that a clip is from, then don’t watch it.

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This clip from the 1998 Les Miserables reminds me of the power of Mercy, and how I must be merciful, even when — and especially when — mercy is costly and difficult rather than cheap and easy. This clip is a bit longer than the others, but well worth it. It also comprises the first minutes of the movie, so no spoilers here.

I cannot say exactly how or why or for what, but I find this trailer for Restless Heart: the Confessions of St Augustine very inspirational

 

The next scenes are from The Giver. They might not make sense if you don’t know the gist of the plot

This scene from the Giver reminds me to heed the calls of God on the heart (which I consider as this scene’s “emotion” reference) instead of succumbing to the temptations of the flesh to fleeting pleasures (which I consider as this scene’s “feelings” reference)

This scene from the Giver reminds me that ultimately it is to some degree my fault if women in my town have abortions, because I could be praying and sidewalk counseling outside where they have them, for I am among the relatively few (as, no doubt, are readers of this blog) who understand the horror of abortion and the power of even one soul praying outside a Planned Parenthood.

And this final part of the Giver I find to be a very inspiring analogy for the coming Warning — the Illumination of Conscience; though it certainly did not intend to be that.

A brief bit of background: The scene begins with the main character escaping with a baby that they were going to kill (see the previous clip). His goal is to pass through the “barrier of memory” (a stupid and impossible concept, but oh well), which will cause all of the memories to return to the people of this dystopian society that blocks all emotion from its members. I find this “return of memories” to be similar to what we expect from The Warning.

This final scene from the Lord of the Rings — the Return of the King, so reminds me of what we now await — the Glorious Reign of Peace, and it inspires me to even now prepare the ground for that Glorious Reign by proclaiming the Divine Mercy and living in the Divine Will.

 

Above all, the Passion of the Christ. No other movie comes close. Buy it

This compilation of a few different scenes from Beyond the Gates reminds me not to avoid sufferings, but to expose myself to them for the sake of the Glory of God and the Salvation of Souls, for in them is found the only thing humans can do that the angels envy: suffering for Christ. (By the way, I highly recommend watching this entire movie – don’t rent it, buy it, and lend it to others. If you are going to do that, then skip this clip!) It reminds me that God is truly found in the midst of the most terrible situations. The final scene from Beyond the Gates reminds me how fortunate I am to have time to work for the Coming of God’s Kingdom, and the freedom to do so — and how I therefore have a grave duty to use it well.

This scene from the Butterfly Circus reminds me to bear all wrongs patiently, and never lose my peace even in the face of revolting things done to me or said about/to me. It especially reminds me not to expect that everything will be sunshine and roses even if I am doing God’s Will and engaging in works of mercy.

 

This scene from the Rite reminds me of the power of simple Faith over the most terrifying demons, and that if I have Faith, I need fear nothing, but proceed with boldness to overcome any obstacle. The main character has been a seminarian for four years but, until this scene, truly had no faith and was nothing but a skeptic/agnostic.

 

This one is a bit of a stretch, but it works for me so I’ll post it in case it works for you also. This clip, though of course having a very fictional setting (which might not make sense if you haven’t seen/read Lord of the Rings), nevertheless helps remind me of the fleeting nature of this earthly life, and how I must ensure that I never, not for one day, live it in such a way that is directed at Earth instead of Heaven.

 

 

Is there anyone who has not drawn great inspiration from Sam’s Speech to Frodo?

 

This scene from the movie, The Kingdom of Heaven (a movie I would not overall recommend), is a great reminder of Judgment Day and our duties before it. I actually put this on my YouTube channel quite some time ago and it has since garnered many views:

This scene from Hotel Rwanda shows the turning point of the main character, where he fundamentally transitions from selfishness and fear to selflessness and courage. After the U.N. abandoned — after, of course, evacuating all the non-Rwandans– the Tutsis even as all the children in an orphanage arrive hoping to escape, he forgets about his vain worldly immediate goals of preserving his hotel and instead sacrifices himself for the human beings in front of him. I watch this to be inspired to make the same choice in my own life:

From For Greater Glory, the martyrdom of Blessed José Sánchez del Río. Sad yet beautiful beyond words. To add to the importance of this, it was just announced that he will be canonized. I don’t suppose I need say what this reminds me of. 

 

This final scene from I Am Legend, where the main character reveals, moments before his self-sacrificial heroic act, that he has converted from being a skeptic who disbelieves in Providence and God (shown in the first half of this video) to the very opposite, inspires me to give up hope on no one (for God’s grace can easily – in a moment – turn His most vociferous opponent into His most ardent soldier – Acts 9:4) and to remember that sacrifice is the measure of love

Platitudinous, yes… but somehow “Your heart is free. Have the courage to follow it” so very much sticks with me and inspires me from this scene from the beginning of Braveheart. How often we neglect our callings because of petty concerns, anxieties, fears, and worries. It should never be so! Jesus constantly tells us to not be afraid. There is no reason for fear, or the hesitation and shirking of duties that comes from it, in following the callings He has placed on our hearts; let us take His word for it.

This scene from Gladiator, particularly the line “Brothers, what we do in life echoes in eternity.” How true!!! We should approach each and every day with the vigor that the soldiers would have received from that speech and charged into battle with. One of the questions the Church asks when pondering whether to canonize a saint is “Did he rejoice at the near approach of death?” We should all rejoice at this!

If you, too, happen to find any of these clips particularly inspirational, then I recommend downloading them onto your hard drive. You never know when YouTube will decide to remove a video. This program enables you to do so: http://www.ytddownloader.com/ Just be very careful as you install it — they will try to trick you into installing a bunch of other garbage (yahoo toolbars, etc.) that you have to very carefully “decline” each step of the way.

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ADDENDUM

I would like to make one final note:

Some of you perhaps feel discouraged because you think that Pope Francis has condemned condemnation of sin, that he has undermined the necessity of your apostolates, that he is insisting upon an entirely different form of the Mission of the Gospel than you have dedicated yourself to and sacrificed so much for, or something of the sort.

He has not.

Here is what he formally prepared, wrote, and released through the Vatican (meaning it is much more authoritative than off-the-cuff remarks [perhaps even only allegedly said] in interviews, etc.) just last week:

We can and we must judge situations of sin …It is our task to admonish those who err and to denounce the evil and injustice of certain ways of acting, for the sake of setting victims free and raising up those who have fallen.

… Our primary task is to uphold the truth with love (cf. Eph 4:15). Only words spoken with love and accompanied by meekness and mercy can touch our sinful hearts. Harsh and moralistic words and actions risk further alienating those whom we wish to lead to conversion and freedom, reinforcing their sense of rejection and defensiveness.”

https://w2.vatican.va...

This Pontificate is not actually confusing. There is nothing confusing about a Pope opening up footwashing to women, updating annulment law, or tweaking the Canonical details of the reception of Communion; the Vicar of Christ is well within his rights to do these things, and the opinion of individual lay people like me on such actions is not particularly important. Nor does God need to consult me before He steers the Church through His Vicar; His words to people who think that He does need to consult them is the same as they were to Saul on the day of his conversion “…it hurts you to kick against the goads.” (Acts 26:14)

“Love the sinner, hate the sin” always has been and always will be the mission of the Church. Pope Francis focuses especially on the former, but the mission itself has not changed one iota.

Almost four years ago, when I was making www.PrepareToSeeHim.org — during the Pontificate of Benedict XVI and in preparation for the Year of Faith — I was striving to put together a website that was both overflowing with mercy in its approach, and also utterly unafraid of calling out those evils that so inundate the world today; so praised and promoted by mainstream Godless ideology; so destructive to souls. I hope I at least somewhat succeeded, as there are now at least one hundred thousand Evangelization Cards that announce this URL circulating around the country and hundreds, if not thousands, more mailed out each week. Every day my wife and I pray that each and every one of those cards will bear abundant fruit.

As I was writing that site, I had the teachings of Pope Benedict on my mind inspiring me. I now have the teachings of Pope Francis on my mind inspiring me. So much drama has transpired during those years. So many debates. So much dissension over relatively minor questions. So much factiousness. And yet…

My mission has not changed. The mission has not changed.

Do not be distracted. Do not be discouraged. Eyes on the prize.

As the events that must come continue to transpire, commentary & debate will seem ever more vital, and the temptation to absorb ourselves in it will ever increase. We must recognize that as a temptation, fight it, and refuse to succumb to it.

In reality, it is the mission that is becoming ever more vital, and we must urgently absorb ourselves in that:

 

Live in the Divine Will

Proclaim the Divine Mercy

Eucharist, Rosary, Chaplet, Scripture, Fasting, Confession, Works of Mercy

Pray, pray, pray

And let love – utterly pure, disinterested, complete, self-sacrificial love – be the absolutely unquestionable form of each and every one of your decisions, thoughts, words, and deeds.

May

Jesus, I Trust in You.

Thy Will Be Done.

Be ever on your mind, heart, and lips.