Everyone of us would love to be able to say that every member of our family is a deeply converted follower of Jesus Christ as a traditional Catholic. But the matter of fact is that they are not. So, at times, we get discouraged and even despair of any conversion ever happening.
Wednesday, one of the little boys at the Traditional Catholic Summer Catechism School, asked me to pray for his dad. I asked him what was wrong. He told me that he had been in an accident on his way to work and was in the hospital. Of course we prayed, all of us for the well being of his dad.
His family lives directly behind St. Catherine’s Church. I would always greet his dad and talk with him when ever I had a few free minutes. But he never came to Holy Mass. The little boy, his mom and sister belong to the Legion of Mary.
After hearing confession that day, I went over to the house to find out how his dad was doing. I found him in his normal place, sitting in the chair outside his front door. He still had his hospital band on his wrist.
He told me how serious the crash was and that his brother, who was going to work with him, was still in the hospital. I told him we would continue to pray for his brother.
But then I went on to explain to him that he could have died and gone to hell. He was very open to talk with me and humbly admitted that that was true. After a little while, I asked him if he wanted to go to confession. He went and had not gone for a long time.
Later, I prayed with the whole family, so that they can begin to live as a holy family. I have watched as the mother began wearing dresses to mass, going to the Legion of Mary with her son and daughter. But when home, she dressed in pants. I have seen their other teenage son and daughter badly dressed. That day she was dressed immodestly. I kindly explained to her the importance of all of them all being holy. She politely listened.
So, this morning, when I went over to help give out Holy Communion, I looked at their house and wondered if the dad would make it to Holy Mass. It is easy to confess, but hard to change bad habits. Well as I was giving out Holy Communion, he was there at the altar rail. It gave me so much joy to be able to give him Holy Communion. Let us pray for him, his family, and all those who have started to change, that they will not backslide or be ensnared by the devil again. That they will by God’s grace, there effort and prayer stay close to God till death.
Their other teenage girl and boy still have a long way to go. But, I would never have imagined that the dad would be at church and receiving Jesus. Conversions usually are very slow and costly. Let us keep on praying and working and remember to never get discouraged or to despair.
Another dad, that I have been working with and whose little sons were at TCSCS, was also at the Latin Mass this morning too. See, working with the children and young men and women does pay off. It is so wonderful to be traditional Catholics and to help others to become one too.
“Never shall I weary of repentant sinners, nor cease from hoping their return, and the greater their distress, the greater My welcome. Does not a father love a sick child with special affection? Are not his care and solicitude greater? So is the tenderness and compassion of My Heart more abundant for sinners than for the just.”
~Our Lord to Sister Josefa Menéndez
The original author of this blog passed away in July of 2016. RIP Father Carota.