Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Fasting Wednesday

Everyone who reads this knows I'm a big fan of Fr. John Riccardo of Our Lady of Good Counsel. He's calling for people to pray and fast for our country as we prepare for the upcoming election.  Here is his first talk, but I recommend listening to all of the ones he's presented as part of the discussion.

Pray and Fast Why?

I know fasting and prayer are recommended to us as whens, not ifs, of a vigilant Catholic prayer life. I also know I stink at it.  It seems like nothing, but it is not nothing, for as Saint Therese of Lisieux says, "to pick up a pin for love can convert a soul." My fasting tends to be of the pin variety.  If I go without diet coke, it will be a fast, because I do seek it daily and often.  But it is as a friend of mine, Larry D once wrote, a cross of toothpicks. (I love that phrase), and the soul it will most likely work on, is mine.

The rest of his talks on fasting for this nation are available here.  I've put off doing this in part because I've usually heard about this after I've not only had breakfast but usually lunch.  However, diets, prayer regimens, writing regimens, budget plans, fasting, any thing we want to pursue seriously, can start at the moment our heart answers.  Anything else, is an excuse, a delay, a triumph of sloth over the opportunity for grace.  Any quitting because we messed up or forgot, is also a form of mini despair, and again, the hooks of despair pulling the soul away from the possibility of greater grace and growth in virtue.  

I hope others will join me, I hope we get a collective not just of Catholics, but of all patriots for this nation, to consider offering something up, surrendering some habit, some gift, for the good of the nation, and that all of us pray for the candidates we have, will grow in discernment, grace, wisdom and charity.   Pray especially for the candidate you despise.  Fast for him or her.  Give alms.  Offer masses for them.  Offer rosaries, offer holy hours.  We're going to need them, whoever wins, to be blessed, be graced, and be touched deeply by God, so that our nation may be a people of hope, a people of generosity, and a people of peace.

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