Frj82’s Blog

June 24, 2015


Filed under: Uncategorized — frj82 @ 11:46 am

“With the Lord on my side I do not fear. What can mortals do to me? (Psalm 118:6)

Not terribly long ago, someone showed up at our parish’s Bible Study. He didn’t look quite like the rest of us, he seemed a bit nervous and out of place– uncomfortable.  We, for our part, did our best to include him in our study, to make sure he had enough to eat and drink, and were pleased at the end of the day that simply had another soul being fed The Word.

You can easily imagine the same thought process going through the parishioners and friends of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina.  As we are in prayer here at St. Mary’s preparing for our 100th Anniversary, they are on the verge of their 200th.  And their Bible is roughly the same size as ours.

The comparisons end there.  One day, our guy showed up and left..  One day, a guy visited their church and left carnage.

This story makes me sick to my stomach, even days later.  We are taught at a young age the sanctity and safety of the church…and then hear of the largest mass murder in a religious institution on American soil.

On this day, Satan took the form of an average, skinny, white 18-year-old boy.  In an old, historic city, a life of brewed hatred hit a fork, and the road less-traveled was chosen.

In the days since, the media/social media reaction has been both predictable and shocking.

Predictable are the bigots who have an issue with the calls for the Confederate Flag to be erased from this country.  “But it has Christian roots, St. Andrew’s “X” Cross!  It was based on the Scottish Flag!” Swastikas also have a religious root, but the Lord knows what they have come to represent as well.

Without getting political, we should strive to look at this with a point-of-view that begins with Christ.  Christ advises us to love our enemies, no matter how we perceive them.

This act had no love.  It was based on ideals taught to a kid…yes, 18 is technically an adult, but there are many reasons that is still “a kid”.  This boy was taught…through inferences to a “lesser race”, by throwaway phrases about skin color, with names for those with different skin colors that may even sound cute-sy.  Something was done to this boy to make him hate.  Hate is not nature– it is 100% nurture.

So how do Christians move on?  The affected parish in Charleston called for forgiveness, as Christ would deem.  Many have called for the removal of that Confederate Flag—something anyone admits is barely a half-measure…but its something.

Christians should continue to pray for equality.  The Civil War is the darkest part of our nation’s history.  And though it will never happen here again, events of the last few months have really heated tensions, especially in our Cleveland area.  We know Christ said to love our neighbor as self (Mark 12:31),  that St. Paul said there is no longer Jew or Greek, slave or free, for all are one in Christ (Gal 3:28).

I don’t know how to get to that point.  But I do know we have to trust God.  We need to continue to keep our doors open to the community around us.  We need to keep up the Mission of our Church and parish, to Evangelize to any and everyone who walks through our doors.

It pains me to know that people’s minds will wander to dark thoughts whenever someone “strange” walks through church doors for the next few months.  A new soul entering our church buildings should be something to rejoice about…but minds will wander.

The church is our safe-haven—it should be free from hatred, stress, fighting, politics, cliques, and shame.  At least, that is how Christ left the church.  Humans have done a number on it…but it leaves room for improvement.

I don’t expect any of these words to change anyone’s mind or heart over anything.  Priests need to vent sometimes, too.  To see hatred come alive and have access to people who condone such acts is an amazing feat of technology, sad as it may be.  Extreme views are media bait—don’t be fooled!

Pray for these souls’ release, for the families affected, for a parish in pain.  Pray for peace, understanding, and for parents and caretakers to further understand the potential impact of their personal views on race on children around them.

Hateful acts have no place in our society, and it hurts ever-harder when something breaks through that dimension of church.  As I opened with verse 6 of Psalm 118, disregarding the affect of mortals on our temporal life, I close with verse 7-our trust in Him that is forever.

“The Lord is on my side to help me; I shall look in triumph on those who hate me” (Psalm 118:7)

Fr. Jason




September 11, 2011

September 11th Brotherly Love

“Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the man who fell in with the robbers?” The answer came “The one who treated him with compassion.”  Words are taken from the Holy Gospel according to Luke.  (more…)

April 1, 2011

Lent and Sports…Lenten Sports?

Almost halfway through Lent now, and many of us have “got used to” what we were supposed to give up for this 40 day fast.  I know speaking to parishioners and children of the parish, I’ve heard the usual suspects – chocolate, soda, sweets, dessert, going out to eat.  (more…)

March 24, 2011

I Wanna Talk about ME!

Filed under: Uncategorized — frj82 @ 2:02 pm

Greetings world – still alive and kicking.  Maybe not as much as I should be on this blog but that’s ok.  I think anyone who reads this knows that I write sporadically and in spurts…but most of the time, I don’t seem to write at all. (more…)

January 2, 2011

2010 in review

Filed under: General — frj82 @ 5:12 pm
Tags: , ,

Hello All: Yes, I went through one of my periods of writer’s block or writer’s indifference or whatever.  Here is to a new year and a renewed dedication to writig.  My goal is to write more posts in 2011 than in 2010.  Here is what my computer told me to post for today: (more…)

October 26, 2010

Quick Note

Filed under: General — frj82 @ 2:24 pm

If anyone would like to begin receiving emails from Saint Stanislaus Cathedral, drop a line in the comments.  We are going to begin sending newsletters and other crazily interesting things beginning at the end of this week.  Anything to increase the flow of communication.

October 18, 2010

After Synod

The Synod is now but ancient history and things are now settling into place.  My boss is now everyone’s boss (Check out this recent live interview)  in the PNCC.  I am awaiting the February arrival of my new boss (I hear he is coming to scope the rectory – to clean my office…or to not clean my office).  (more…)

October 7, 2010

Synod, Take 4!

Since all the “good stuff” has already happened, we’re sort of left with the stuff that doesn’t really “matter” to the general public, or even the general PNCC.  Important since the last update was the election of (more…)

October 6, 2010

Synod, Take 3!

Hello all once again.  One item that absolutely bears mentioning is that the 23rd General Synod of the Polish National Catholic Church has not only elected a new Prime Bishop (check out this article, with a short interview with PB Elect Mikovsky), but has elected on the first ballot a new bishop. (more…)

October 5, 2010

Our New Prime Bishop…

Congratulations to Bishop Anthony Mikovsky, pastor of Saint Stanislaus Cathedral and Ordinary of the Central Diocese, who has been elected with two-thirds majority vote to the Office of the Prime Bishop.  (more…)

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