Cleansing Fire

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Zeal for Thy House Will Consume Me — Part XI — Meditation in the Ruins

April 26th, 2011, Promulgated by Diane Harris
This entry is part 11 of 21 in the series Zeal for Thy House

In a Diocese where churches are so wantonly closed, objections of parishioners dismissed, and the communion of saints in the Church Militant has reached its apex in spaghetti suppers, it seems fair to say that a sense of the Holy has been lost, or at least diminished.  Is not the Sanctuary of any Catholic church at least as holy as the Sanctuary of the Temple of Jerusalem?  Why then do we see such disrespect, and also the enticing of souls into disrespect?

What has been occuring at St. Januarius is all of the above and more.  It has become the poster child for so much that is wrong in the servanthood for souls.  And now we have icons of destruction to gaze upon as we meditate from the Bible on how God views His Own Sanctuary, and those who destroy it, or aid those who destroy it. 

Destruction in the Sanctuary

Psalm 74: 3-8:

“Direct Thy steps to the perpetual ruins; the enemy has destroyed everything in the sanctuary!   

Thy foes have roared in the midst of Thy holy place; they set up their own signs for signs.

At the upper entrance they hacked the wooden trellis with axes.

And then all its carved wood they broke down with hatchets and hammers. 

They set Thy sanctuary on fire; to the ground they desecrated the dwelling place of Thy name.

They said to themselves, “We will utterly subdue them”…”

When it is church leadership that drives forth to this destruction, how can the flock be blamed for not understanding the concept of holy?  For arriving at church on a Sunday morning and greeting everyone but the Lord?  For dressing improperly?  For running out early to get out of the parking lot?  For failing to pause for Thanksgiving while the Eucharistic presence still dwells within?  God is still God, and He’s given many words of Scripture to reveal what He expects for His Sacred Sanctuary.  We offer these for additional meditation, and in memory of the words: “I will go in to the altar of God; to God, the joy of my youth.” (Ad Deum qui laetificat juventutem meam.)

Steps of Ascent to the Altar

Lev: 19:30 and 26:2:   “You shall keep my sabbaths and reverence my sanctuary: I am the Lord.”

Num: 18:3:   “They shall attend you and attend to all duties of the tent; but shall not come near to the vessels of the sanctuary or to the altar, lest they, and you, die.”

Num 3:38:   “…Moses and Aaron and his sons, having charge of the rites within the sanctuary, whatever had to be done for the people of Israel; and any one else who came near was to be put to death.”

Num 4:15:  “…the sons of Kohath shall come to carry these, but they must not touch the holy things, lest they die. These are the things of the tent of meeting which the sons of Kohath are to carry.”

Num 18:1:  “So the LORD said to Aaron, “You and your sons and your fathers’ house with you shall bear iniquity in connection with the sanctuary; and you and your sons with you shall bear iniquity in connection with your priesthood.”

 

"...tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away."

Isa 63:18:  “Thy holy people possessed thy sanctuary a little while; our adversaries have trodden it down.” 

 Lam 1:10: The enemy has stretched out his hands over all her precious things; yea, she has seen the nations invade her sanctuary, those whom thou didst forbid to enter thy congregation.”
 
Eze 5:11:  “Wherefore, as I live, says the Lord GOD, surely, because you have defiled my sanctuary with all your detestable things and with all your abominations, therefore I will cut you down; my eye will not spare, and I will have no pity.” 
 
Eze 8:6:  “And he said to me, “Son of man, do you see what they are doing, the great abominations that the house of Israel are committing here, to drive me far from my sanctuary? But you will see still greater abominations.”
 
Eze 23:38:  “Moreover this they have done to me: they have defiled my sanctuary on the same day and profaned my sabbaths.”
 
Eze 44:8:  “And you have not kept charge of my holy things; but you have set foreigners to keep my charge in my sanctuary.”
 
Dan 9:17:  “Now therefore, O our God, hearken to the prayer of thy servant and to his supplications, and for thy own sake, O Lord, cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary, which is desolate.”
 
The verse from Daniel is a good place to end; it requires the recognition that we are indeed in exile, and while we serve as best we can on behalf of God’s Sanctuary, it is only His MIghty Hand which can restore His Glory, and avenge desecration.  Winning or losing is only relevant to those for whom winning or losing is the highest they can achieve.  As for us, we serve the Lord, and simply say, as in Luke 17:10:  “We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.”
 
 
 

 

Series Navigation<< Zeal for Thy House Will Consume Me — Part X–Happy EasterZeal for Thy House Will Consume Me — Part XII — Rome Bound >>

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3 Responses to “Zeal for Thy House Will Consume Me — Part XI — Meditation in the Ruins”

  1. avatar Kevin says:

    It honestly boggles the mind as to why they started this during Holy Week. Of all the times to start renovation on a church, the LAST week they should start is Holy Week, considering that is the one week when people should go to Mass.

  2. avatar Monk says:

    Kevin,
    They have lost their faith….

  3. avatar Raymond Rice says:

    These priests are so sensitive!!!LOL I always have maintained that priestly celebacy was a back door gift to women!!!!

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