Thoughts for May 16 (St Simon Stock) from Fr Willie Doyle

St Simon Stock
St Simon Stock

Are you weary of the fight already and willing to give in to the enemy? Never mind, come back, begin again, Jesus wants you. There are millions of pagans to be saved, a hundred thousand dying sinners every day to be rescued.

COMMENT: Today’s quote captures the essence of Fr Doyle’s spirit – he was a real fighter given over to spiritual combat, and he was a true missionary dedicated to saving souls, even to the point of losing his own life in the process. These two dimensions encapsulate his inner life of asceticism and his outer life of zealous apostolate.

These two concepts – spiritual combat and apostolate – are firmly rooted in the lives of the saints and indeed in the teaching of Jesus. After all, we follow Christ who told us to fight by denying ourselves, to take up our cross daily, to strive to be perfect, to sin no more. He also sent out His disciples to bring the good news to people and to save souls.

Today is the feast of St Simon Stock, the Carmelite friar to whom, according to the long standing tradition, Our Lady revealed the scapular promises. In essence, tradition tells us that those who wear the brown scapular will have the grace of final perseverance. The scapular is not a good luck charm or a piece of superstition. But it is an important sacramental. We are not obliged to believe in the promises relating to the scapular, but it has a long tradition in the Church, and many saints died wearing it.

Many alleged miracles have been associated with wearing the scapular. Here is one that I came across recently. It is a firsthand account written by a priest who identifies himself and is willing to stand over this story. Once again, we do not have to believe in this story. We do not have to believe that anything supernatural or miraculous happened here at all. It is very possible that there are natural explanations for these events. But then again, as Christians, by definition we believe in the supernatural and in possibility of Divine intervention. If we deny a priori the possibility these realities, we can hardly call ourselves Christian. http://www.stpeterslist.com/4546/fr-higgins-the-man-i-saw-brought-back-to-life/

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