My lifelong existential crisis continues. Kind of. I'm simply perplexed these days. It seems everything is in a state of collapse, or else threatened by it. Some days I feel like the last Catholic who loves and supports the Holy Father - when I may not understand what he says or does sometimes, I usually don't try to either. However, I do try to understand why so many dislike him or don't trust him.
To be honest, I think it is often because individuals and groups have formed themselves into 'clans' if you will - borrowing from Michael Matt's call to 'unite the clans'. Maybe that's what I have done as well, yet I see the Pope as a sign of hope, pretty much a prophet, albeit his ways can be as abrasive as a Jeremiah. Yet I try to maintain a 'supernatural' attitude regarding his authority and pastoral care - that is, recognizing that he is the one God has placed over our heads. To dispute that he is Pope by God's will is to mistrust Divine Providence - even if one thinks his papacy was arranged by the St. Gallen Mafia - he's the Pope.
And that's where people get tripped up. That's where the resistance originates.
I can be as confused as the next person - in fact I'm often confused. Remember that prayer, "Jesus I surrender myself to you, take care of everything." I pray that a lot - along with 'Jesus, I trust in you.' It helps. Especially when I worry that some institutions, apostolates, religious communities and so on, may change or disappear. All of us have seen it going on for decades, yet today, it appears to be accelerating, which entails not a little bit of suffering."My church will be different; my people will be different; difficulties and trials will come upon you."
Years ago a group of Franciscans in Boston befriended me because we shared a devotion to Charles de Foucauld and sought to emulate his contemplative life in an urban environment. The brothers were part of the Charismatic movement, which I was familiar with before entering the monastery. Long story short, they invited me to go with them to the Conference at Notre Dame. A donor gave them an extra ticket and we flew there from Boston. It was teeming with prophecy and great devotion to the Blessed Sacrament in and through adoration. It was quite a sight to see hundreds of people my age and younger sitting around the altar in prayer and adoration - I'll never forget the sight. Anyway, long story short, but fresh from Rome was the Ralph Martin prophecy, which seems to me we are living through now. It's a good reminder for Catholics and Christians to get a grip and not be taken in by every wind of resistance, especially towards the Holy See.
PROPHECIES GIVEN AT ST. PETER’S BASILICA DURING THE CLOSING EUCHARIST ON PENTECOST MONDAY—MAY 1975
“Because I love you, I want to show you what I am doing in the world today. I want to prepare you for what is to come. Days of darkness are coming on the world, days of tribulation....Buildings that are now standing will not be standing. Supports that are there for my people now will not be there. I want you to be prepared, my people, to know only me and to cleave to me and to have me in a way deeper than ever before. I will lead you into the desert...I will strip you of everything that you are depending on now, so you depend just on me. A time of darkness is coming on the world, but a time of glory is coming for my church, a time of glory is coming for my people. I will pour out on you all the gifts of my spirit. I will prepare you for spiritual combat; I will prepare you for a time of evangelism that the world has never seen.... And when you have nothing but me, you will have everything: land, fields, homes, and brothers and sisters and love and joy and peace more than ever before. Be ready, my people, I want to prepare you...” (given by Ralph Martin)
“I speak to you of the dawn of a ‘new age’ for my church. I speak to you of a day that has not been seen before....Prepare yourselves for the action that I begin now, because things that you see around you will change; the combat that you must enter now is different; it is new. You need wisdom from me that you do not yet have.
You need the power of my Holy Spirit in a way that you nave not possessed it; you need an understanding of my will and of the ways that I work that you do not yet have. Open your eyes, open your hearts to prepare yourselves for me and for the day that I have now begun. My church will be different; my people will be different; difficulties and trials will come upon you. The comfort that you know now will be far from you, but the comfort that you will have is the comfort of my Holy Spirit. They will send for you, to take your life, but I will support you. Come to me. Band yourselves together, around me. Prepare, for I proclaim a new day, a day of victory and of triumph for your God. Behold, it is begun.” (given by Bruce Yocum)
"In time, one faith, one baptism, one Church, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic."
Our Lady to Sr. Lucia
“Come, Holy Spirit! You inspire new tongues and place words of life on our lips: keep us from becoming a ‘museum church,’ beautiful but mute, with much past and little future. Come among us, so that in this synodal experience we will not lose our enthusiasm, dilute the power of prophecy, or descend into useless and unproductive discussions.”
- Pope Francis