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"I assure you that the good Lord is much kinder than you can imagine. He is satisfied with a glance, with a sigh of love... In regard to myself, I find it easy to practice perfection, because I have learned that the way to Jesus is through His Heart. Consider a small child who has vexed his mother by a display of bad temper or disobedience. If the child hides in a corner through fear of punishment, he feels that his mother will not forgive him. But if instead, he extends his little arms towards her and with a smile cries out: ‘Love, kiss me, mamma, I will not do it again,’ will not his mother press the little one to her heart with tenderness, and forget what the child has done? And yet, though she knows very well that her dear little one will misbehave again at the first opportunity, that means nothing if the child appeals to her heart. He will never be punished..."

[Image: xjesusheartill2.jpg]
I think this teaching of St Therese might have been appropriate to remind us of the tenderness of the Heart of Jesus in a time when people focused alot on divine punishments, but in our own modern times, do we really need more excuses to rationalize away or mitigate the seriousness of our sins?
I don't think St Therese is doing that, but I do think that modern man will read this and it gives him too much comfort and will cause a relaxed attitude to sin.
Pope Francis seems to be promoting this, buy saying that God's mercy is infinte... but yet we know that he has limits on how much mercy He grants before he chastises, which I guess is a kind of mercy.
My point:
Our age is too lenient and forgiving of itself and its sins... we need to be reminded of divine justice and fear of the Lord to balance the perspective and get closer to reality.

Winoblue, I agree with you when it comes to the human element of the Church at large. Most Catholics don't think nearly enough about God's Justice. But for trads, it's the exact opposite; too many of us swing 180 degrees to the opposite direction and focus only on God's Justice, forgetting about His Mercy and Love. Both of these aspects of God need to be known and taught; neither "side" focuses on the full picture.

And I've said that because we trads are right about doctrine and the liturgy and the traditional Sacramental rites, it's we who should be doing the leading by teaching the BIG picture. It's trad-dom that will save the human element of the Church, but it won't work -- and shouldn't work -- if we forget Love, because without that, it's all meaningless.


(10-03-2013, 10:30 AM)winoblue1 Wrote: [ -> ]I think this teaching of St Therese might have been appropriate to remind us of the tenderness of the Heart of Jesus in a time when people focused alot on divine punishments, but in our own modern times, do we really need more excuses to rationalize away or mitigate the seriousness of our sins?
I don't think St Therese is doing that, but I do think that modern man will read this and it gives him too much comfort and will cause a relaxed attitude to sin.
Pope Francis seems to be promoting this, buy saying that God's mercy is infinite... but yet we know that he has limits on how much mercy He grants before he chastises, which I guess is a kind of mercy.
My point:
Our age is too lenient and forgiving of itself and its sins... we need to be reminded of divine justice and fear of the Lord to balance the perspective and get closer to reality.

If I may add a little of my own insight regarding God's Mercy this is how I see it

We know God's mercy is limitless. We have many examples of this. Just think about the Divine Mercy devotion and such.

We also know that God is infinitely just and thus there is no mercy without justice.

Now let's get back to God's mercy. Since we know God to be infinitely mercy it only means that all of God's actions have to be merciful in someway or another. There are numerous examples in the bible for instance when this is the case. For example:

After Adam and Eve sin in the Garden of Eden the first thing God does is to take them out of the Garden and right afterwards He puts a Seraphim and Cherubim to guard the tree of life. This is for their own good. The Tree of Life is the type for the Cross and the fruit of the Tree of life is a type for both Christ and the Eucharist. If God did not prevent Adam and Eve from eating of the tree of life (Which immortalizes and prevents death) then wouldn't the fate of Adam and Eve not have been different from Satan? Adam and Eve would have lived in sin for eternity (Hell).

Another example is the flood or the deluge. This is also merciful, why? Because it prevented people from sinning and ruining the state of their soul more than they were already. Many repented before they died because of this. This is talked about in Mathew during the Crucifixion of Jesus when he descended to Hell including those who died in the flood.

Also Sodom and Gomorrah which both were completely destroyed. This prevented serious sins from being spread just like a disease.

The greatest example though lies in the Crucifixion of Christ. Could God not have prevented the Crucifixion? Well of course he could. Let us ask each other what would have happened if Jesus evaded the crucifixion? Well for one thing we would have had Jesus for a couple more years of something. Also a great evil would have been prevented. But at the same time the greatest evil would have happened. The greatest love God could ever give ( Our redemption and salvation) would not have happened.
I love Therese. Not sure she'd like this priest's encapsulation of her life/ message though.
St. Therese has it exactly right. Read the first letter of John. Perfect love casts out all fear, which, as John writes, is tied in with punishment on Judgment Day. He whose love is perfected will not fear. It's like a child who wanders away from home and gets lost. When he finally sees his mother, he runs head long into her open embrace. The thought that he might be punished because he strayed, is nonexistent. All that matters is that he is reunited with the person he loves the most. This is how it is with the blessed souls who are reunited with God at death. They run straight into his open arms. But if there is fear, due to imperfect love, they will run into the opposite direction. Those people go to purgatory or hell. Countless saints have taught this, in their own way. I think Therese's way is the best expressed.

Another thing about justice. Too often we associate justice with punishment for sins. But justice is much more than that. It is also about  rewarding those who have done good. It's about compensating those in the next life who had nothing in this life. Those who mourned on this earth will one day laugh and dance. Those who laughed will one day weep. You see this over and over in the Lord's beatitudes, sermons and parables - especially the parable of Lazarus and the rich man. There will be perfect balance and harmony. And everyone will receive -- to use an analogy -- a robe that is perfectly fitted for them. That's justice. We have nothing to fear if we love and trust the Lord.