Broadcasts and Interviews

npr-logoHere is a heartbreaking testimony: Reuben Jackson on Football Withdrawal

(Here is another link, if the link you just clicked didn’t work. Scroll down to the bottom.)

A year ago today, we pilgrims celebrated Holy Mass in a chapel at the place where the Lord Jesus wept over Jerusalem (Luke 19:41-42).

The window behind the altar looks out over Jerusalem
The window behind the altar looks out over Jerusalem

Archbishop Burke said in his homily:

God the Son Incarnate wept in this place as He looked upon Jerusalem, knowing its rejection of Him and of the Father who sent Him. His tears were not tears of bitterness, but of love. He wept because He had come to save His nation and, through His nation, all nations. But His own refused to receive Him…

We cannot fully imagine the depth of the sorrow which weighed upon the Heart of Jesus…He loves us purely and selflessly, for our sake alone, not because He needs us or our love…

We cannot fully understand the love of Christ, and respond to Him with love, until we too can weep for the sins of the world, until we share His thirst for souls.

Altar of the Chair in the apse of St. Peter's
Altar of the Chair in the apse of St. Peter's
Eight years ago today, I served the newly minted Theodore Cardinal McCarrick’s Mass at the Altar of the Chair of St. Peter in the Vatican Basilica.

Someone once asked a priest I know, “Why did you go to the seminary?” This priest gave the wisest and most profound explanation of the vocation I have ever heard: “Really, all I ever wanted to do in life was serve Mass.”

When I served Cardinal McCarrick’s Mass below the Chair of St. Peter, it was the Memorial of St. Polycarp.

St. Polycarp was martyred during the persecution of the emperor Marcus Aurelius. Ironically enough, during the Roman persecutions, Christians were tried and convicted as “atheists,” since they refused to acknowledge the emperor’s “divinity” and to offer incense to the false pagan gods.

Many Christians tried to make themselves heroes and turned themselves in. Because they were motivated by pride and self-will, they wound up quailing before the lions and betraying the faith.

Painting of St. Polycarp in his shrine in Izmir, Turkey
Painting of St. Polycarp in his shrine in Izmir, Turkey
Bishop Polycarp, however, stayed home. He did not seek martyrdom.

Eventually, the authorities came to arrest him.

He asked them to wait while he said his prayers, and he served them some food. One of the soldiers was so moved by Polycarp’s serene resignation that he refused to proceed with the arrest.

The other officers brought the bishop before the proconsul. “Swear by the emporer’s divinity, offer the customary sacrifices, and renounce Christ–and I will let you go.”

Polycarp calmly replied, “Fourscore and six years I have served Him, and He has done me no wrong. How then can I blaspheme my King and my Savior? If you require of me to swear by the ‘genius’ of Caesar, as you call it, hear my free confession: I am a Christian.”

They burned him at the stake. The pyre gave off the sweet smell of incense.

…St. Polycarp, pray for us poor Hoyas fans, who are sharing the cup of bitterness!

Just in case you are a Letterman fan, and you were afraid that Dave was going soft–apparently he isn’t:

The entire interview is on YouTube in four parts.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s