Thursday, August 9, 2012

Nothing Wrong with Believing in Miracles

In some ways being a Catholic Blogger destroys the simplicity of one's faith.  Personally, I've always been of the mind that it's better to believe in miracles than to despise them.

( The parting of the Red Sea.)

As a matter of fact, until I started blogging I didn't realize how many people did despise miracles despite the fact that the Bible is filled with them as is the history of the Church. There has never been a time that God has not stepped into our lives in miraculous ways as far I know.

 (The manna in the desert.)

I simply assumed that others accepted miracles as part of God's provision and love for us.

 (The  Virgin Birth.)

Until I started blogging that is. Once you start blogging you begin to see that there are millions of Catholics who don't believe in miracles anymore.

 ( Lourdes)

 Or even despise them as only necessary for people of small faith.

 (Fatima)

As in, "You may need to believe that miracles still happen since you are such a spiritual infant but I do not need them myself."

 (St. Faustina... O ye great saint of so little faith!)

The first time I came across this kind of attitude I was a bit shocked.

(You too Little Flower? O the shame of it!)

After all, it seemed to me that if God saw fit to perform a miracle then we should be thankful, right? As in thanking the Giver of all good things?

 (Oh, please say it ain't so St. Paul! Obviously, it was a moment of insanity on your part that brought about so great a conversion.)++

It didn't take me very long to become wary of what I wrote in certain comment boxes. I knew on which blogs it was okay to discuss the miraculous and which blogs to tread very carefully around.

(The lame shall walk.)

I learned this the hard way of course but managed to escape with my head intact.

 (The blind shall see.)

It did occur to me that perhaps there was something wrong with me for believing so easily and maybe I should back down.

(The deaf shall hear.)

Good sense prevailed, thankfully.

(Take this, all of you, and eat of it,
for this is my Body,
which will be given up for you.
Take this, all of you, and drink from it,
for this is the chalice of my Blood,
the Blood of the new and eternal covenant,
which will be poured out for you and for many
for the forgiveness of sins.
Do this in memory of me.)




(By the way, you had a lot of nerve bilocating like that, St Pio.)


++ (Sorry, St. Paul, but it was a rather bizarre mystical experience you had and all that. You can' t blame people for questioning it, can you? Can you?)










21 comments:

  1. Very cleverly written, Mary. What a shame so many (especially Catholics) do not believe in miracles. May we always have eyes to see and ears to hear~ the Truth.

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  2. Mary,

    I think there is a great tendency in present times for people to try and dismiss miracles by assuming there must be a natural rather than a supernatural explanation for them. But I believe in miracles!

    The only thing I am cautious about is the origin of some 'miracles'. The devil is great at leading us astray by mimicking God and producing his own 'miracles'. I guess we can be guided by the Church though.

    You have mentioned so many wonderful miracles, including those associated with St Pio (a favourite of mine) from fairly modern times. I have a special connection to Padre Pio through Thomas, and have a relic of his (a piece of his habit).

    Such a wonderfully written post, Mary. God bless!

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  3. Hi Karin,
    Thanks! I've always thought that it doesn't make any sense to think that God no longer performs miracles. Even the most careful saints believed in miracles. This isn't to say that people should believe every single claim under the sun - but that we should not close our hearts to them.

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  4. Hi Sue,
    There are fake ones but the Church takes time in discerning the false from the true and does a good job when it comes to large and very public ones like Fatima. No one is required to accept things like apparitions (and this is understandable) but neither should people completely close their hearts to the miraculous because this doesn't glorify God who gives them to us for a reason.

    You are so blessed to have a relic of Padre Pio's! Miracles abound through his intercession, both during his time on earth and now.

    I'm glad you liked the post. God bless you too!

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  5. Mary, before my conversion, I was very skeptical - miracles weren't part of my reality. But, when God lifted the veil from my eyes, he opened my mind to a completely new way of seeing things.

    Nowadays, I find that reflecting upon miracles is exciting and uplifting. (Lanciano is one of my favourites) Do you find it exciting to contemplate Purgatory, as well? Not everyone can understand that!

    Seeing scientific 'facts' in a poetic light is also unpopular, I think.

    Lately, I've written comments in defence of the Church and the saints only to delete them. Often, people close their minds to truths which challenge their long-held beliefs.

    God bless, Mary:-)

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  6. Mary, this is a wonderfully written post on an important topic. "The natural man does not accept what is taught by the Spirit of God. For him, that is absurdity. He cannot come to know such teaching because it must be appraised in a spiritual way." (1 Cor. 2:14)

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  7. This time you have surpassed yourself Mary. This is by far the best post you've ever written. Thank you.

    The thing is ... miracles happen these days, right here and right now. But people are not willing to believe them.

    For example, there are many miraculous healings performed through God's people these days; both at Lourdes and elsewhere in the world. I know someone who has been healed through Fr DiOrio for instance.

    But people's hearts have hardened through a diet of materialism and self-interest.

    God bless you.

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  8. THen there's the other direction, where people say something was "miraculous" when in fact it was just lucky or slightly against the odds or perfeclty normal but it favored them. "The grocery store actually had the baking soda! It was a miracle!"

    We prayed for a miracle for my daughter, but even at the time I figured usually you don't get the miracle you asked for, otherwise they'd be called "commonplaces." :-) It doesn't mean they don't happen,only that they didn't happen for my daughter.

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  9. This is something I believe so strongly these days. Miracles and healings. Thank you Mary for sharing. Blessings and hugs.

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  10. Hi Vicky,
    I am much more accepting of the miraculous now than I used to be too. Oh, I believed that miracles occurred but my heart was hard and it was much easier to ignore them rather than show gratitude for them. I had become very worldly and had lost my sense of awe when it came to spiritual matters.

    I almost used Lanciano as an
    example :)

    No, I can't say I find it "exciting" to contemplate purgatory itself...lol. I would be lying through my teeth if I said that. But I do contemplate the purging power of God's love which is on the same idea.

    God bless you too!

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  11. Hi Nancy,
    Thank you for the passage from Scripture - it fits this post and expresses the point I'm trying to make in this post. God bless!

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  12. Hi Victor,
    Thank you for your comment. I agree that materialism and self-interest can close people off to the understanding of the omnipotence of God. I think that many people today try to put God in his place if He doesn't fit in with their idea of Him. In our secular society miracles are a no-no it seems. They break all the scientific "rules" that we have been taught. I say "let God be God" and if He is inclined to step into someone's life in a miraculous manner then who am I to tell Him otherwise, right?

    Fr. DiOrio has healed thousands. My friend's daughter was healed of childhood leukemia through the gift God gave him. There is a room named after her daughter, Mary, at one the hospitals she used to spend time in (in or near Boston?). It was named "Mary's room" after she was found to be cancer free.

    God bless!

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  13. Hi Jane,
    Yes, people can go overboard ;) The term "miracle" is often used loosely these days.

    We can't see the bigger picture here and it's hard for us to understand why we lose those we love, especially
    children. My heart goes out to you. It's only after we die that we can truly understand why God allows tragedies like this.

    "Commonplaces"? The writer in you is always thinking :)

    God bless.

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  14. Hi Grace,
    I know you do :) A certain remark in my comment box showed me that...lol. The thing is - Liz' son IS still cancer-free and they celebrated at Disney. The mass was caused by an injury not a return of the cancer.

    Hugs and prayers!

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  15. Emily's death brought about a lot of good in the world and in my soul. I've been told by some that they chose not to abort their babies after reading her story. I can't argue with that. :-) Her death wasn't good, but God brought good from her death.

    But the thing is, if God always stepped in and made Himself obvious, that would begin compromising our free will. We wouldn't get ourselves out of trouble, and we wouldn't have faith. We wouldn't work hard to get to know Him. That's why they're not Commonplaces.

    I don't think God likes to show off all the time. Yes, He could. But miracles seem to be doled out on an as-needed basis. Solanus Casey (I believe) said that when someone came to him with an illness and prayed for a miraculous healing, he felt that the trend was those who had great faith experienced consolation and hope, but not a miracle, whereas those who received miracles were those whose hearts were hardened against God and who needed something of that magnitude to break through to them.

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  16. LOVE IT. Might be your most clever post ever.

    God Bless.

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  17. Hi Jane,
    It's beautiful to have the eyes of faith to see what you see. I've always loved the name Emily and it sounds like she is working hard behind the scenes. I believe these little saints are very great in Heaven and have a lot of pull :)

    I like your reasoning for why miracles are not commonplaces. Made me smile!

    Solanus Casey may have a point - I've seen many people turn to God after a miracle. Sometimes He gives them to those who don't ask too though, out of sheer goodness I think. Just because He loves us :)

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  18. Hi Michael,
    Thank you - I'm glad you liked it! God bless you too!

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  19. Love this. So well written. I love sarcasm anyway!! :)
    Thanks for writing this.

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  21. Mary, thanks for this post. Most, if not all, the blogs I visit, don't have people disputing or hating miracles. What a sheltered life I lead! Your experiences surprise me. Maybe I take miracles for granted. In any case, it seems to me that those who "despise" miracles don't have a trusting relationship with God or a willingness to submit and admit how helpless we really are. To say, "I don't need miracles to believe" comes from a blinded soul denying God's loving kindness to all of us undeserving creatures. Baptism brings about a miracle of sanctifying grace without which we would not have the theological virtues of faith, hope and charity. So all of us baptized have been the recipient of that one miracle alone.

    Repentance for sins is a miracle of grace, too. And the forgiveness of sins by God is a miracle. We can't see the miracles happening, but that doesn't mean they don't exist and that we shouldn't rejoice in all of them for the sake of the whole Mystical Body.

    Ah, well. I'm old-fashioned. I believe in a God greater than what I can imagine who can and does do great things 24/7.

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