These thoughts come to you on the eve of his solemnity the 19th March. Last year I had a few ideas about how this great Saint can and must play a significant part in our family and faith life.
Not the Destination...
"Lest We Forget...!"
The phrase above is one we adopt and use year in year out to recall with gratitude and solemnity the countless war dead who sacrificed their lives to defend and preserve our freedoms
We've all heard time and time again of so-called "jihad" concerning Islamic fundamentalism and its ideological links to tyrannical radical Islamic terror. But "jihad" is really about declaring "war" on self - i.e. self-mortification; self-denial; self-control etc. in order, fundamentally to be a better person, to be a more rounded human being. Selfless, more compassionate and considerate and full of humility, which as CS Lewis wisely said, is not about "thinking less of oneself but thinking of oneself less."
I can recall how as an infant my older sisters, whilst reading me bedtime stories, would reassure me on moonlight nights about “the man in the moon” as if to reassure me of an abiding presence of care and protection from above.
Back in the 90s, when I was private secretary to Bishop Patrick Kelly of Salford Diocese, he would often say that we should not declare, 'Lord forgive us our faults and failings.' He said this because in his view [and I agree with him], "faults and failings are what happen with railways, not human beings. People commit sins, and we shouldn't be afraid to say the word sin!"