‘Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his body, which is the church.’A puzzling quote. An odd quote from scripture. How could Christ's suffering be lacking? Pope John Paul II wrote about all this in his apostolic letter SALVIFICI DOLORIS(ON THE CHRISTIAN MEANING OF HUMAN SUFFERING) So mom was a great theologian. She knew what she was talking about.She lived it too. I have never seen anyone endure so much suffering and not complain even a little. She had her bad days but she endured so well that you would not have known how ill she really was. I think the final straw was dad passing away. She died of a broken heart. However, even that she tried to carry herself. i will say this.She had 2 good friends that came to visit her nearly every night when she found she had cancer again. They were wonderful.One has passed away and the other i can't recall the name. I think i would know her if i saw her but the name escapes me. I wish i had told both of them how much that was appreciated. Mom passed in dad's chair.It's where he often sat. It was in front of the window where his hummingbirds used to come. We could see our own apartment from that window. Someone asked me why we moved where we did.It was simple. Mom and dad. She didn't have to come get me.I could go across the street. I was also asked if there were any other surprises. None. Mom had talked to us YEARS ago how her will would be made out. There was nothing i didn't know and i was fine with it. I was just sure at that time it would be years away.Little did i know. Sorry,I digress but it's part of the relationship we had.I also love the new Pope with his emphasis on the dignity of us as persons not based on material wealth. Trust me,in our present culture we all struggle with that temptation. The closer we come to Christ though the less it means.I'm not there,am hoping to arrive. We'll talk about DETACHMENT sometime.Now the topic.Human suffering. It's unavoidable. None of us would ever care to trade with someone else. How does it have meaning if we believe in Christ? How does it have meaning for us as Catholics? When i was living the hedonistic lifestyle(long before Confession)life was about experiences;none of which i wanted to be less than pleasurable.What does St Paul's words mean to people who shove God out of their life? I think from the way i lived you fill it up enough with other things that you don't spend a lot of time thinking about it.Pope Francis touched on that today. Mother Therese said,
"Go out into the world today and love the people you meet. Let your presence light new light in the hearts of people. Let no one come to you without leaving better and happier. If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other. We realize that what we are accomplishing is a drop in the ocean. But if this drop were not in the ocean, it would be missed."
It may mean offering up what is going wrong in our lives to be that person. I've had any number of things go wrong in my life-some self inflicted-but as time goes on i get how to go on with life. It gets better. It doesn't mean anything has changed. It means i'm ok where I'm at with God because God is ok with where I am for now.I can't change anyone.I can hear mom's words again and again.Offer it up.Thank you mom.You weren't perfect. You did much right,some wrong. It's fine.
THE KEY WORDS. LET GO OF YOUR PLANS.Supper is over. Aide has gone home.Husband went to bed(very tired). Back to EWTN and coverage of Pope Francis at WYD! Kitchen can be cleaned tomorrow.