….THE PROMISE AND THE MIDDLE GROUND

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…Some people think that being a cleric means I handle EVERY situation that comes to me with panache and complete understanding..with a sense of “doing the will of God”..not so.

I, as a cleric, have to walk the “Middle Ground” between doing what is RIGHT, or doing what is POPULAR with others…I have to reach out and grasp hands that others do not feel “worthy” to grasp and pull upwards from their problems.

I have to balance what my Master teaches in His Word, with what others seem to THINK is THEIR right to speak to me about….

I will give you an example: Two years ago I made a promise to help a sick woman get better from an illness, a sickness that at first seemed easy enough to coax her through…. That illness came into a different light when she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Cancer.

I spent the next three months doing 18 hour days looking for homeopathic remedies, medical cures, scouring ENDLESS books and web pages looking for cures, relief from her various ailments that cropped up….everything from liver failure to kidney failure.

It was my research into her FIRST mystery illness that uncovered the cancer she had…up till then, the medical ‘professionals’ were wandering around in the dark asking all the wrong questions, giving ALL the wrong meds, and aggravating her disease to near death before realizing that I WAS RIGHT.

Then, I had to deal with the woman herself…the stubborn, prideful, UNREPENTANT woman who refused to follow ANY course of treatment because she did not like the taste of the meds, the treatments needed, or the way she could not have her own way in the hospital.

Why? BECAUSE I MADE HER A PROMISE.

This form of Cancer (AML/CML) USUALLY kills the patient within 3 months…but because of diligence and dedication, long hard hours of ENDLESS persuasion, begging, pleading, and prayer I have kept her alive for TWO YEARS….

Now then…MANY in my parish see what I have been doing as somehow diverting “God’s Will” that she depart….some are told lies from negative persons and they believe THEM over ME…others still only see or hear HALF of the truth, and jump to conclusions…

I have seen my once calm parish TORN APART with divide over this person….and yet, I still hold to the promise I made to a sick woman to stick by her side till we either CURE HER, or she is called home.

Her family is not making it easy either, with their constant DRAMA and NOT listening to a WORD I SAY in regards to her health or mental well being…yet still I stay by her side..

I see them causing drama, which she reads from her Iphone (yes, I have spoken out to them MANY times about allowing her to be online and use her CELL PHONE in a HOSPITAL)… Every time she uses it, she gets worked up, her numbers plummet, her body strains too hard, and she crashes into a coma, or aggravates her symptoms to near lethal proportions…I BEG, I PLEAD, I PRAY, and STILL they do not listen…yet still I stick by my promise to her…

What is the point, you ask?

I do not care WHAT others think, or feel, I AM DOING WHAT MY MASTER SAID TO DO….to tend those in suffering, to aid those in pain.

If I broke the promise I made to her, how could ANYONE trust me with THEIR problems?? How could I, in good conscience, look myself in the mirror knowing I had let a person DIE because I wanted to be the “popular” type of cleric…the kind that bows to the whims of MAN instead of the WILL OF GOD??

Those who cannot GRASP MENTALLY WHY I am still helping her, and depart from my parish so quietly I do not see them leave..they just…drift away…shows the extent of the trust they have in me, a cleric.

It is not that I do not want to help her, or that I do not care about THEIR side, it is just that a PROMISE IS A PROMISE. When a cleric makes a VOW to someone, it means they must sacrifice EVERYTHING in order to fulfill that promise…even to the point of social ostracism.

I do not get into the middle of arguments…I do not “pick sides”…I do not listen to one without hearing the other…I have to walk “The Middle Ground” so as to better HELP BOTH SIDES reach a hand-clasping resolution to their problems with each other and bring about PEACE as God intended.

I do not care if they have some sort of social/political side, nor do I care if they are fighting among one another about this issue…the point I am making is this:

I am here to HELP. If they cannot set aside their political/social differences long enough to understand that I am trying to help THEM as well as her…that I am trying to salve THEIR souls as well as do my job by this person, then they can leave….period.

For TWO WHOLE YEARS I have had HOURLY, DAILY calls with this person…to salve her soul, pray for her mental, spiritual, and physical ease of pain. I have spent almost 1700 HOURS in prayer for her, read through over 14,000 PAGES of websites, contacted doctors and specialist is the field of her treatments AT MY OWN EXPENSE (not financially either….many of these doctors are friends of mine who no longer wish to hear my voice on the other end of a phone!), I have sacrificed ANY personal time I had so that I can seek further advice, treatment, or cure for her….TWO WHOLE YEARS….no vacations, no holidays, no rest inbetween….I have gone WITHOUT SLEEP, WITHOUT MEALS, WITHOUT A BREAK FOR DAYS …FOR WEEKS ON END…FOR TWO WHOLE YEARS to help this woman…

WHY do I do it? WHY do I still fight for her?

The WHOLE POINT is summed up in my Master’s parable of The Good Shepherd…

““I am the good shepherd.

The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it.

The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep” -John 10:11-13

And AGAIN He gives the reason in Matthew

““What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off?

And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off.

In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should perish.” -Matthew 18:12-14

So even if all 1800 of my Parish online leave me over this issue…divided because they cannot set aside their own narrow point of view about WHY I should continue helping her I WILL STILL LOOK AFTER THIS ONE LOST SHEEP.

I vowed BEFORE GOD to help to the utmost extent of my being to help people in need…not to quit on them because someone does not share a political/social view of WHY I should or should not be helping someone…

If you, who are reading this, cannot grasp how even to the detriment of MY OWN LIFE AND HEALTH WHY I continue to help those in need, you need to go back and READ your Bible…not just quote it.

I am not the “Hired Hand”, I am the one HIRED by The Good Shepherd… I LOOK AFTER THOSE HE PLACE IN MY CARE AND WILL NOT ABANDON THEM SIMPLY BECAUSE OF SOME VILE TONGUED SPOKEN LIES AND WHISPERS.

If you DO have a problem, then I wish you peace, and may God open YOUR eyes to the truth….for I am doing as HE commanded, and will NOT be swayed by ANY mortal human’s words.

I wish you peace, love, and all the good my Master wishes…but therein lay the “Middle Ground”…do you stay because you are wary of your soul? Or do you leave because you are wary of your friends..?

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READING OF THE DAY: 08 JUNE, 2013

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“Each year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the feast of Passover,and when he was twelve years old, they went up according to festival custom.

After they had completed its days, as they were returning, the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it.

Thinking that he was in the caravan, they journeyed for a day and looked for him among their relatives and acquaintances,but not finding him, they returned to Jerusalem to look for him.

After three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions,and all who heard him were astounded at his understanding and his answers.

When his parents saw him, they were astonished, and his mother said to him, “Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety.”

And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?”

But they did not understand what he said to them.

He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart.” -Luke 2:41-51.

SAINT OF THE DAY: 08 JUNE, 2013

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Saint Medard
Bishop of Noyon and Tournai
(† 545)

Saint Medard, one of the most illustrious prelates of the Church of France in the late fifth and the sixth century, was born in Picardy of a pious and noble family in about the year 457, in the time of Childeric and Saint Remigius. His brother, Saint Gildard, would later become Archbishop of Rouen; Saint Owen and other authors say they were twins.

From his childhood Saint Medard manifested the most tender compassion for the poor. On one occasion he gave a fine new cloak to a destitute blind man, and when asked why he had done so, he answered that the misery of a fellow member in Christ so affected him that he could not refuse to give him part of his own clothes.

He gave one of his father’s horses to a poor man who had just lost his only horse by an accident; but when his father counted his animals that evening, he found the number unaltered.

This miracle caused the parents to allow their son to bestow alms as he wished. As a young man he prophesied to a companion and friend, the future Saint Eleutherius, that he would later be raised to the government of the see of Tournai.

Saint Medard and his brother Gildard were ordained by the bishop of Vermand while still relatively young; after being tonsured together they pursued the same ecclesiastical studies under the bishops of Tournai and Vermand.

The annals tell us that, to assist Saint Remigius, the two brothers were present in the cathedral of Rheims, for the baptism of Clovis and his large army of Franks in 496. Saint Gildard was named to the archbishopric of Rouen towards the end of the century, where according to its archives, he provided in all things for the needs of his people until he died in 545.

Saint Medard after acceding to the priesthood became a bright ornament of that sacred Order. He preached the word of God in the churches of Picardy, with an unction which touched the hearts of the most hardened; and the powerful influence of his example and his unfailing charity, by which he enforced the precepts which he delivered from the pulpit, was resisted by few.

Some incidents were recorded concerning this holy priest.

Several thieves had taken from his terrain various items, such as a harvest of grapes or a fund of honey, even a bull. The stealer of honey was pursued by the bees until he came to confess his larceny at the priest’s feet and ask pardon; the bull thief had to bring the animal back because the bell around its neck never stopped ringing. And finally, the bishop bestowed upon the repentant ones the goods they had taken without permission.

In the year 530, the thirteenth bishop of Vermand died, and Saint Medard was unanimously chosen to fill the vacancy. He was consecrated by Saint Remigius, bishop of Rheims.

The new bishop found it necessary to transfer the seat of his episcopacy, because the region of Vermand had been recently devastated during the invasions of the Huns and Vandals. Profanation was threatening; thus he moved his center to Noyon.

Pope Hormisdas named him also to the episcopal throne of Tournai, uniting the two dioceses without depriving either city of its episcopal title.

At Tournai, where the barbarians were numerous, he was treated with opprobrium and often threatened with death; he nonetheless overcame the rudeness of the infidels and libertines and brought about so many conversions that the diocese was entirely altered in appearance.

Our Saint’s new dignity did not make him abate anything of his austerities, and, though at that time he was advanced in age, he thought himself obliged to redouble his penitential labors. Despite the vast extent of his diocese, it seemed insufficient for his zeal, which could not be confined. Wherever he saw the opportunity of advancing the honor of God and abolishing the remains of idolatry, he overcame all obstacles, and by his zealous labors and miracles the rays of the Gospel dispelled the mists of idolatry everywhere.

After Saint Medard had completed his great work in Flanders, he returned to Noyon, where shortly afterwards he fell ill.

Before he died, King Clotaire, son of Clovis, whom he had brought to penance, prevailed upon him to accept being buried in a magnificent basilica, which he intended to build to serve as his sepulcher. In 545 the entire kingdom lamented his death, as his brother Saint Gildard was mourned in the same year in the region of Rouen.

In the two bishops the faithful had lost their common fathers and protectors.

(SOURCE: Les Petits Bollandistes: Vies des Saints, by Msgr. Paul Guérin (Bloud et Barral: Paris, 1882), Vol. 6;)