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Hurricane Rita the Gift and the Challenge!

Saturday, September 24, 2005

"Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary,
that never was it known
that any one who fled to thy protection,
implored thy help or sought thy intercession,
was left unaided.
Inspired with this confidence,
I fly unto thee,
O Virgin of virgins my Mother;
to thee do I come,
before thee I stand,
sinful and sorrowful;
O Mother of the Word Incarnate,
despise not my petitions,
but in thy clemency hear and answer me.
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Praised be Jesus Christ!! Now and Forever!!

I noticed that today is the Feast of Our Lady of Ransom (Mercy) and thought about how very different Hurricane Rita could have been. Things could have clearly gone so much worse had it not been for God's Mercy. The impact of another disaster of the proportions that we saw as a result of Katrina could have had ripple effects on every person not only in the south but throughout the United States and throughout the world. There are so many things that could have gone so wrong and would have drastically effected each one of us.

I think, that we have been given a great opportunity and a great challenge. Do we accept this gift of Mercy that we have been given and use it to better proclaim Christ and bring mercy to others or do we quickly go back to selfish ways? Do we use this chance encounter with Mercy to bring others to Christ and to His Bride or do we toss this present out with today's used newspaper? This is the challenge that we face to transform through God's Grace and Mercy those around us, our society and our world and recognize that God has given us this opportunity. We can be a force for effective change and introduce Christ to others in our words and our works of Mercy and bring great blessings into the lives of the world. We can also go back and resume our ways and cast this gift into the rubbish.

I have read that one of the greatest sins is that of presumption (CCC# 2092). Would it not be a sin of presumption by society and even individually if we just go back to our selfish sinful ways after we have been given this great gift of Mercy and just presume that God will forgive without requiring our own conversion.

We have been given on this Feast of Our Lady of Ransom (Mercy) the gift of great Mercy whether we live in the south or in the north or in another country entirely. I do not think it was just a coincidence that the storm which grew so strong so fast and could have done so much damage dwindled down to a lesser storm (though still powerful) on this day that the Church celebrates Our Lady of Ransom (Mercy). We all have been ransomed from unbelievable suffering not just in the south but everywhere by the God of Mercy through the prayers of the Mother of Mercy. What we have to do now is use this opportunity- this gift- to bring the Divine Mercy to those around us and the world. We must not presume that we will be afforded this great gift again. Luck has nothing to do with it- it was God's Mercy working through Our Lady. Now let us rejoice and thank God and Our Lady for this gift and resolve to better proclaim the Mercy of God to the world.

Omnia Pro Iesu Per Mariam!!

Image above:
"Madonna with the protecting cloak"
Friedrich Schramm
Ravensburg, c. 1480
State Museums, Berlin
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