Extra Terrestrial

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“(Oh mamma mia, mamma mia) Mamma mia, let me go
Beelzebub has a devil put aside for me, for me, for me!”    Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen

“Running for the door  I had to find the passage back to the place I was before
‘Relax’ said the night man, ‘We are programmed to receive. You can check out any time you like, But you can never leave!'”  Hotel California by Don Felder / Don Henley / Glenn Frey

 

Rock music has a bad rap.  It’s drug fueled music is a vehicle for the dark kingdom of the devil.  I am happy to report way back in the days of Homer, demons were alive and well.  Calypso and Circe, the nymphs,  Cyclops,  Sirens and Poseidon are only a few of the demons wrecking havoc in Odysseus,  Telemachus and Penelope’s life.  We are hard wired to believe in the supernatural.   Rock lyricists and mythology expose our need.

In this months Atlantic Monthly (cf. today’s featured image) pictures a priest brandishing a cross holding manual for exorcism with a terrified woman gesturing, “I’ve tried everything else…. I’m desperate.”

the_possessed_regan.jpgEven though I’ve watched the Exorcist and many of its variations numerous times, I forget how real the official Catholic church teachings are.

The Catholic Rite of Exorcism  begins by invoking the triune God  to have mercy on us followed by the virgin mother of God.  Next  the priest calls upon 60 different intercessors.

  1. St. Michael,
  2. St. Gabriel,
  3. St. Raphael,
  4. All holy angels and archangels,
  5. All holy orders of blessed spirits,
  6. St. John the Baptist,
  7. St. Joseph,
  8. All holy patriarchs and prophets,
  9. St. Peter,
  10. St. Paul,
  11. St. Andrew,
  12. St. James,
  13. St. John,
  14. St. Thomas,
  15. St. James,
  16. St. Philip,
  17. St. Bartholomew,
  18. St. Matthew,
  19. St. Simon,
  20. St. Thaddeus,
  21. St. Matthias,
  22. St. Barnabas,
  23. St. Luke,
  24. St. Mark,
  25. All holy apostles and evangelists,
  26. All holy disciples of the Lord,
  27. All holy Innocents
  28. St. Stephen,
  29. St. Lawrence,
  30. St. Vincent,
  31. SS. Fabian and Sebastian,
  32. SS. John and Paul
  33. SS. Cosmas and Damian,
  34. SS. Gervase and Protase,
  35. All holy martyrs,
  36. St. Sylvester,
  37. St. Gregory,
  38. St. Ambrose,
  39. St. Augustine,
  40. St. Jerome,
  41. St. Martin,
  42. St. Nicholas,
  43. All holy bishops and confessors,
  44. All holy doctors,
  45. St. Anthony,
  46. St. Benedict,
  47. St. Bernard,
  48. St. Dominic,
  49. St. Francis,
  50. All holy priests and levites,
  51. All holy monks and hermits,
  52. St. Mary Magdalen,
  53. St. Agatha,
  54. St. Lucy,
  55. St. Agnes,
  56. St. Cecilia,
  57. St. Catherine,
  58. St. Anastasia,
  59. All holy virgins and widows,
  60. P:   All holy saints of God,
    All: Intercede for us.

 

Why so many requests?  Is the priest that weak?  Is the person seeking help so bound?  Is the devil so strong?  Yes.  Yes and Yes.   When someone asks me to pray for a particular need , it gives me grace.  It’s like a spiritual shot in the arm.  We think that’s missing in heaven.   Everyone in heaven is to very perfect, our prayers don’t impact them.  WRONG!  When I ask Anthony to help me, he gets a spiritual buzz.   Even the patriarchs and the prophets are included in this litany.  When the priest invites all the saints in Hebrews 11, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob send their prayers toward Louisa Muskovits. 

If you were raised fundamentalist, you believe the devil is real but not so much concerning our ability to ask for help from the Church triumphant (i.e. Christians already dead).

Jesus is the vine.   The branches are His Church.   We have branches on earth and we have branches in heaven.   But it is the same vine.   This supernatural tree reaches to a community of believers in heaven and in earth.    

Jesus speaks and we listen.     He says the same thing to the Church in heaven as He does to the Church on earth.   The difference is how we listen.  We do our best to rid ourselves of things that stand in the way of authentic hearing.   However, in heaven, there are no obstacles.     When God speaks to us individually on earth, we sometimes get only bits and pieces of it.   However, Jesus is not the only person listening.  Heaven speaks with one voice. Heaven  listens with one ear.

Revelation 3: Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.

Jesus is knocking but we have to undo the latch.   Why would anyone want to open the door?

–Jesus tells us he wants to have fellowship with his children.   That is a good motivation.  All of us practice the shepherd the sheep; the father the child; the savior the son experience daily.  He wants to practice His presence.

Jesus also wants us to practice the presence of his family.  Jesus has a large family in heaven wanting to share their lives with us.

B31022Y49-A.jpg

So many Christians live like orphans.  We have no idea how many saints are standing ready to pray for us.    Instead we  “do not cross over” thinking we are contacting the dead but forget we are one big happy family alive in Christ.

 

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