Tag Archives: Jesus Christ

Come to Jesus

restAre you tired of all the bad news every day?

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

– Jesus Christ
Matthew 11:28-30 


Rest in peace, Robin Williams

"The Crazy Ones" Press Conference

We’re all in shock over actor-comedian Robin Williams’ death at age 63 by apparent suicide.

Yesterday, Williams was found in his Tiburon home by family members, who called for help at 11:55 a.m. He was pronounced dead at his home.

Tiburon is a town in Marin County near San Francisco. Unlike many others in the Hollywood “entertainment” industry, Williams deliberately chose to live in San Francisco, far from the glitz of Hollywood. Unlike many Hollywood stars, Robin Williams did not put on airs but treated ordinary people with kindness and consideration.

The Marin County coroner’s office has not made any conclusions about Williams’ cause of death, but preliminary findings indicated that Williams’ died of “suicide due to asphyxia,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement. A final determination is still pending, after a comprehensive investigation is completed, which would typically include toxicology screenings and an assessment of Williams’ health and state of mind in the days before his death.

Williams’s press agent Mara Buxbaum said the actor had recently battled severe depression. Williams had fought cocaine and alcohol addiction but had spoken little about mental illness.

I don’t agree with his politics but I respect Robin Williams for his humanity, support of our soldiers, charity, and lack of airs.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Williams “was a loyal and compassionate advocate for all who serve this nation in uniform.” He gave freely of himself to many charity causes, including entertaining 90 thousand service men and women in 13 countries and war zones, as well as his philanthropy that helped veterans struggling with hidden wounds of war.

 

Here are some accounts by non-celebrities of personal encounters with this very talented and humane man:

San Francisco Chronicle‘s film critic Mick LaSalle: “I spoke to him on the phone once and then met him once in person — in 1987 — quite a while ago — backstage at a Comedy Day in Golden Gate Park.  Offstage he seemed subdued, slightly wistful, very gentle with people, very aware of the capacity of his celebrity to do damage, and very determined not to hurt anybody.  His career was exploding then.  He had already emerged as a movie star, and he was recognized as a great and important comedian.  But there was no weirdness there, no distortion about him, no sense of someone who thinks he’s better than everyone and is pretending to be a regular guy.  If anything he seemed kind of humble.”

SFC reader techGuy: “I remember going to one of the benefit shows he used to have over at Bimbo’s in the city. He would practice his new material and give the proceeds to charity. The shows were never advertised, but they sold out almost immediately after they were announced. I asked one of the waitresses what he was like. She said that he made a point of spending a few minutes with each and every person on staff. He would talk and play around with them and ended by shaking everyone’s hand and thanking them for being there. I think that part of his comedic genius was you could get a feel for his humanity both in his comic and dramatic roles. The world lost a true comedic genius and even bigger than life human being.”

SFC reader harrylime9: “I also met Williams several times and yes, he was unimpressed with his own celebrity–he was soft spoken and polite.”

PET brain scans

PET scans of the brain showing different activity levels in a person with depression, compared to a person without depression.

Despite the twinkle in his eyes, his comedic gift, and his genius-level ability for lightning-speed ad-libbing, Robin Williams’ eyes always had a sadness that we now know was due to depression.

While life sometimes gets me blue — Weltschmerz or world weariness — by the grace of God I’ve never been depressed, i.e., clinically depressed.

Depression is more than feeling sad; instead, the depressed experience intense feelings of sadness and other symptoms, such as losing interest in things you enjoy. If that low mood lingers day after day, it could signal depression. Major depression is an episode of sadness or apathy along with other symptoms that lasts at least two consecutive weeks and is severe enough to interrupt daily activities.

Depression is not a sign of weakness or a mental illness. It is a major public health problem and a treatable medical condition. Click here for information on tests for depression.

For some reason I’d always thought Robin Williams to be Jewish. So I was surprised to read his entry in Wikipedia that he was raised in and was a member of the Episcopal Church, which he once described in a comedy routine as “Catholic Lite—same rituals, half the guilt.” He authored the “Top Ten Reasons to be an Episcopalian.”

Aside from sadness, I’m at a loss to imagine how anyone who believes in the loving and merciful Triune God can take his own life, leaving a wife and three children behind, the youngest of whom is 22.

Maybe in the darkness of hopelessness and despair, the depressed imagines he is abandoned by God. To that I say:

Fix your eyes on our suffering Lord on the crucifix. None of our suffering can ever approach His, which He willingly bore unto death because He loves us so.

jesus_crucifixion

~Eowyn

One pair of hands

Are you as depressed as I am about America?

Watch this.

Listen to this.

And take heart.

H/t Miss May

~Eowyn

Do This in Remembrance of Me

“This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me.” ~Luke 22:19

Today is the Feast of Corpus Christi.

Today is a day of joyous significance when we commemorate and celebrate the institution of the Holy Eucharist, which is the definitive meaning of the Jewish Passover.

The word “Eucharist” is an action of thanksgiving to Our Lord, from the Greek words, “eucharistein and eulogein.” (Lk 22:19, 1 Cor 11:24; Mt 26:26; Mk. 14:22) As such, “Eucharist” recalls the Jewish tradition about the blessings that are announced particularly during a meal regarding God’s works of creation, redemption, and sanctification.

The following dialogue took place while Jesus was teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum, which is set forth in John 6: 22-71. It is the occasion of the first announcement of the Holy Eucharist — Corpus Christi or the Body of Christ.

Jesus says in John 6:48-58:

“I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever, and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world. The Jews quarreled amongst themselves saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day.  For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever.”

John continues in 6:60-69:

“Then many of his disciples who were listening said, “This saying is hard; who can accept it.?” “Does this shock you? What if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? It is the spirit that gives life, while the flesh is of no avail. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But there are some of you who do not believe.” Jesus knew from the beginning the ones who would not believe and the one who would betray him. And he said, “For this reason I have told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by my Father.” As a result of this, many of his disciples returned to their former way of life and no longer accompanied him. Jesus then said to the Twelve, “Do you also want to leave?” Simon Peter answered him, “Master, to whom shall we go?  You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God.”

Accordingly, Jesus chose the time of the Passover, the eve of His Passion, to fulfill what he had announced previously when he was teaching at the synagogue in Capernaum – giving His Body and His Blood to His disciples.

In Luke 22:7-8, we are told, “Then came the day of Unleavened Bread, on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. So Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and prepare the Passover meal for us that we may eat it.”

With this command, the disciples did as Jesus had commanded and made the necessary preparations. Then it is revealed in Luke 22:14-20:

“When the hour came, he took his place at the table, and the apostles with him.  He said to them, I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I tell you, I will not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he said, “Take this and divide it among yourselves; for I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”  Then he took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying,“This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And he did the same with the cup after supper saying,“This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my Blood…

The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains in 1340-1344:

“By celebrating the Last Supper with his apostles in the course of the Passover meal, Jesus gave the Jewish Passover its definitive meaning. Jesus’ passing over to his father by his death and Resurrection, the new Passover, is anticipated in the Supper and celebrated in the Eucharist, which fulfills the Jewish Passover and anticipates the final Passover of the Church in the glory of the Kingdom.” 

And, “The command of Jesus to repeat his actions and words “until he comes” does not only ask us to remember Jesus and what he did. It is directed at the liturgical celebration, by the apostles and their successors of the memorial of Christ, of his life, of his death, of his Resurrection, and of his intercession in the presence of the Father.

From the beginning the Church has been faithful to the Lord’s command.  Of the Church of Jerusalem it is written:  “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. . .Day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they partook of food with glad and generous hearts.”( Acts 2:42, 46.)

It was above all on “the first day of the week,” Sunday, the day of Jesus’ Resurrection, that the Christians met “to break bread.” ( Acts 20:7.)  From that time on down to our own day the celebration of the Eucharist has been continued so that today we encounter it everywhere in the Church with the same fundamental structure.  It remains the center of the Church’s life.  Thus from celebration to celebration, as they proclaim the Paschal mystery of Jesus “until he comes”, the pilgrim People of God advances, “following the narrow way of the cross,” toward the heavenly banquet, when all the elect will be seated at the table of the kingdom.” 

Jesus came to make a new Covenant with not just Jews, but with all who believe in Him — Jew and Gentile. On this wonderful Feast of Corpus Christi, we are reminded that the manna given by God to the Israelites while they were trying to survive in the harsh desert is replaced by Corpus Christi, the Body of Christ.

“This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me.” ~Luke 22:19

The Holy Eucharist is our manna which the Lord Jesus has chosen to feed and nourish us, through which He gives Himself to us, during our remembrance of His sacrifice, in Mass.

~Joan & Eowyn

Finkelstein and Jesus

Jesus was wandering around Jerusalem when he decided that he really needed a new robe.

After looking around for awhile  he saw a sign for Finkelstein, the Tailor.

So, he went in and made the necessary arrangements to have Finkelstein prepare a new robe for him. A few days later, when the robe was finished, Jesus tried it on — and it was a perfect fit!

He asked how much he owed.

Finkelstein brushed him off: “No, no, for the Son of God there’s no charge!  However, may I ask for a small favor. Whenever you give a sermon, perhaps you could just mention that your nice new robe was made by Finkelstein, the Tailor?”

Jesus readily agreed and, as promised, extolled the virtues of his Finkelstein robe whenever he spoke to the masses.

A few months later, while Jesus was again walking through Jerusalem , he happened to walk past Finkelstein’s shop and noted a huge line of people waiting for Finkelstein’s robes.

He pushed his way through the crowd to speak to him, and as soon as Finkelstein spotted Jesus he said: “Jesus, Jesus, look what you’ve done for my business!  Would you consider a partnership?”
“Finkelstein & Jesus.  After all… I am the craftsman.”

“I understand, Mr. Finkelstein.. but I am the son of God,” Jesus replied. 

The two of them debated this for some time.
Their discussion was long and spirited, but ultimately fruitful. They finally came up with a mutually acceptable compromise. A few days later.. the new sign went up over Finkelstein’s shop:
 
 

Lord and Taylor

You know you’re going to pass it on.

~Steve~                                  H/T  I_Man

Three little trees — and their dreams

Are you, like me, feeling glum because of the daily onslaught of depressing political news?

If so, here’s a reminder to “Look Up!” and to fix our eyes on what really matters.

The beautiful little essay below is from FOTM’s beloved pnordman’s blog, Light For the Way.

Tears rolled down my face as I read it.

Good tears. Soul-cleansing tears . . . .

~Eowyn

drizzle2

Three little trees and their dreams

By Anonymous

Once upon a mountain top, three little trees stood and dreamed of what they  wanted to become when they grew up. 

The first little tree looked up at the stars and said: “I want to hold treasure.  I want to be covered with gold and filled with precious stones.  I’ll be the most beautiful treasure in the world!” 

The second little tree looked out at the small stream trickling by on its way to the ocean. “I want to be traveling mighty waters and carrying powerful kings. I’ll be the strongest ship in the world!” 

The third little tree looked down into the valley below where busy men and women worked in a busy town. “I don’t want to leave the mountain top at all.  I want to grow so tall that when people stop to look at me, they’ll raise their eyes to heaven and think of God.  I will be the tallest tree in the world.” 

mossy2

Years passed. The rain came, the sun shone, and the little trees grew tall.

One day three wood cutters climbed the mountain. The first woodcutter looked at the first tree and said, “This tree is beautiful. It is perfect for me.” With a swoop of his shining axe, the first tree fell. “Now I shall be made into a beautiful chest, I shall hold wonderful treasure!” the first tree said. 

The second woodcutter looked at the second tree and said, “This tree is strong.  It is perfect for me.” With a swoop of his shining axe, the second tree fell. “Now I shall sail mighty waters!” thought the second tree. “I shall be a strong ship for mighty kings!” 

The third tree felt her heart sink when the last woodcutter looked  her way. She stood straight and tall and pointed bravely to heaven.  But the woodcutter never even looked up. “Any kind of tree will do for me,” he muttered. With a swoop of his shining axe, the third tree fell. 

The first tree rejoiced when the woodcutter brought her to a carpenter’s shop. But the carpenter fashioned the tree into a feedbox for animals. The once beautiful tree was not covered with gold, nor with treasure, she was coated with saw dust and filled with hay for hungry farm animals. 

The second tree smiled when the woodcutter took her to a shipyard, but no mighty sailing ship was made that day. Instead the once strong tree was hammered and sawed into a simple fishing boat. She was too small and too weak to sail to an ocean, or even a river; instead she was taken to a little lake. 

The third tree was confused when the woodcutter cut her into strong beams and left her in a lumberyard. “What happened?” The once tall tree wondered. “All I ever wanted was to stay on the mountain top and point to God….” 

 Many, many days and nights passed. The three trees nearly forgot their dreams. 

But one night, golden starlight poured over the first tree as a young woman placed her newborn baby in the feedbox. “I wish I could make a cradle for him,” her husband whispered. The mother squeezed his hand and smiled as the starlight shone on the smooth and sturdy wood. “This manger is beautiful,” she said. 

And suddenly the first tree knew he was holding the greatest treasure in the world.

One evening a tired traveler and his friends crowded into the old fishing boat. The traveler fell asleep as the second tree quietly sailed out into the lake. Soon a thundering and thrashing storm arose. 

The little tree shuddered. She knew she did not have the strength to carry so many passengers safely through with the wind and the rain. 

The tired man awakened. He stood up, stretched out his hand, and said, “Peace.” The storm stopped as quickly as it had begun. And suddenly the second tree knew he was carrying the king of heaven and earth. 

One Friday morning, the third tree was startled when her beams were yanked from the forgotten woodpile. She flinched as she was carried through an angry jeering crowd. She shuddered when soldiers nailed a man’s hands to her. She felt ugly and harsh and cruel.

But on Sunday morning, when the sun rose and the earth trembled with joy beneath her, the third tree knew that God’s love had changed everything. It had made the third tree strong.

And every time people thought of the third tree, they would think of God. That was better than being the tallest tree in the world. 

So next time you feel down because you didn’t get what you want, just sit tight and be happy because God is thinking of something better to give you.

To the Greatest Mother of All

Thank you for saying “Yes” to God when the angel Gabriel visited you on that day so many years ago.

Happy Mother’s Day!

With gratitude and love,

~Eowyn & Joan