When I was in hospital I saw something I'd not seen since I was a child.
have a chapel in hospital. The door to the chapel is an ordinary door,
like all the others in a long hospital corridor. It says on it "Chapel"
as opposed to "X Ray" or "Pharmacy" or whatever else is posted on the
noticed that several people whilst passing by this door did the Sign of
the Cross. A few opened the door and looked in for 5 or 10 seconds, did
the Sign of the Cross, and then continued on their way.
this is something I've not seen for many years when, as a child, we were
taught to do the Sign of the Cross whenever we passed a Church. I
certainly did not expect to see it in secular Britain.
So ... what is the Sign of the Cross?
It is first and foremost a Prayer.
When we Cross ourselves and say "In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost", we acknowledge God as our only living God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. We acknowledge a fundamental mystery of our Faith. God is three persons in one. We pray that in His name we will be loved and protected by Him.
The Sign of the Cross is also an acknowledgement that God's only Son, Jesus, suffered and died for us on the Cross.
The Sign of the Cross is our protection, our shield against all evil. When we Cross ourselves we acknowledge that no evil can pass through the Cross and harm us.
The Sign of the Cross is our sign of respect and love to Our Creator and Saviour.
The Sign of the Cross is our witness to everyone that we are Christians and we believe in God, three in one, living today here and now; as He has always been in the past and will be in future. When those people made the Sign of the Cross as they passed the hospital Chapel door they made more than a sign of respect. They witnessed to everyone watching about God.
said to the disciples, "And I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me
before others, the Son of Man also will acknowledge before the angels of
God; but whoever denies me before others will be denied before the
angels of God."
... And ... that's what Christian Blogging is all about. Once we've started Blogging we should continue to witness for the Lord.
John the Baptist preached in the desert and ate locusts and honey.
I wonder how many people listened to what he had to say in the hot desert. Let's face it, it's not exactly the center of the universe with crowds from all over the world mingling and shopping and gathering to hear a man dressed in camel hair. Apart from the odd geko, snake or scorpion who was there to listen to John?
He would have done much better at the city mall or the town center or church than wander in a hot desert with no umbrella or ice cream to keep him cool.
But yet ... he did have his successes paving the way for the arrival of Christ, and he did baptise quite a few people too.
How about us Bloggers?
Some of us Blog every day or so, others Blog less often and perhaps eagerly we check whether any one has commented, or we look at the statistics to see how popular, or not, our posts are.
We may well feel that each of our Blogs is a lone voice in the vast expanse which is the World Wide Web.
And perhaps this is so ...
But yet ... we never know who might be visiting us on this World Wide Web and to them, perhaps, our post is the first time they have read about Christ. Despite our advanced technology in the 21st Century there are still plenty of people who have not heard or learnt about God, and His only Son. Even in the so-called civilised world there are many who view God as a myth, a human invention, or someone in whom it is fashionable not to believe.
Our individual Blogs are important as lone voices in the wilderness witnessing for Him. One light, shining in the darkness created by the evil one in order to lead us astray.
One Blog is important. Many Blogs, working together, shine brighter throughout the world.
Every Christian Blog started should continue to shine for as long as possible.
Each post can spread more light if reflected elsewhere. Either here on this Community, or linked with/to other Christian Blogs or websites.
If, in our travels, we read a good Blog we can reflect it further by linking the post on our own Blogs. That way the readers of the original Blog and our own readers will have benefitted from the message on the post.
On a day when we have nothing to say on our Blog, and are not inspired to write; why not link to someone else's Blog post instead? That way, we have kept our Blog fresh and up-dated and we have aimed a mirror on someone else's light to shine brighter in the darkness.
John the Baptist did what he did without the aid of Blogger, Facebook or other modern technologies at our disposal.
So how much easier should it be for us to spread the Word with all the fancy contraptions we have today?
Our "Witness to Life" activities are multiplying at my daughter's high school. This is the group that I ended up being a regular driver and chaperone by chance (definition 7: Holy Spirit's orchestration). Instead of just the one Saturday trip to the Planned Parenthood in Aurora, Illinois - which was the largest abortion facility opened in the United States, when it opened. Since then this evil organization has opened larger facilities. Please link over to my blog to read the rest of this post.
My husband and I attended a Catholic Charismatic Renewal
Conference this past weekend. We had not been to one for several years for one
reason or another.
But it was worth the wait! What a blessing it was to be
there! Talk about renewal.
There was a lot of beautiful music. And daily Mass. Oh my.
The joy. There was so much joy. So much praise & worship.
We had an opportunity for confession and we had Mass both
days and we had a healing service unlike one I had ever been to before. The
focus was completely on Jesus present in the Blessed Sacrament.
There was a procession with the Blessed Sacrament. And then
the monstrance was placed on the altar and we prayed and prayed and sang and listened
to the priest pray. His words were so powerful.
Before I knew it, tears were streaming down my cheeks. I
just knew I was loved by Jesus. At that moment, all was well.
Over the weekend, there were some inspiring talks. The
priest spoke about the church being under attack and how we charismatics need
to go forth and spread the gospel. He told us to speak out. We need to use our
gifts, he said, and bring the light of Christ to all.
We cannot be silent. We need to defend life. We need to
proclaim the gospel for all to hear.
But with love, he told us. Don't criticize. Don’t condemn.
No infighting. Pray for the person who gets you upset.
The theme of the conference was Jeremiah 15:19 - "If you return, I will restore you and
you shall stand before me."
The theme for me - the message that I kept getting all
weekend from different speakers was this -
The Church is not about a set of rules or regulations. The
Church is about the person of Jesus Christ. And once we fall in love with
Jesus, then we love His church.
So when I got home, I found these quotes from Pope Benedict:
"The Church is
not an association that wishes to promote a certain cause. It is not about a
cause. It is about the person of Jesus Christ." - Pope Benedict XVI,
July 1, 2008
And this one too - "Many
people perceive Christianity as something institutional -- rather than as an
encounter with Christ -- which explains why they don't see it as a source of
joy." -Pope Benedict
XVI, May 2004
Ahh, but it is a source of joy.
I am now convinced, that we will never be able to change people's
minds until we change their hearts. The opinions out there in the secular world
about the Catholic Church, about contraception and abortion and euthanasia,
will not change until people change. Until people have a real conversion of
heart and fall in love with the Lord.
Then change will happen.
Years ago I had a conversion and became Catholic. I was changed by Jesus.