Tuesday, December 06, 2016

If there were no God, we would still have Saint Nicholas

Image result for st nicholas icon

"If there were no God, we would still have Saint Nicholas", or so the Russians used to say. The ancient parish church of Brighton is dedicated to him. East and West there are thousands of ancient coastal churches dedicated to him, a mark of past devotion. There are legends but of him we know very little, or nothing.

The reason for such devotion to him is that prayer to him seems to worked. It is his post-mortem intercession that is important that matters. I suspect that is the reason the great Roman Canon contains its own list, canon, of saints is that 'they worked'.

Nowadays saints seem to be 'made' for political or factional reasons, when they were a rarer commodity, they emerged from the faithful's prayer and pilgrimage, from experience.

Behind the Amoris Laetiia controversy seems to be a sense of a loss of as search for holiness, Even the major protagonists seem to have lost this sense.

I suspect this is one of the reason Cardinal Sarah is calling for a return to 'ad Orientem' worship.
A Church that has lost that sense of Holiness has lost its reason to existence.

6 comments:

Ignatius O'Donovan said...

Hi Fr Ray. Best wishes with your health issue. I was interested in your comment on St Nicholas whose feast I did celebrate today. One observation. Whether we celebrate "Ad orientem" or otherwise surely the same sense "of Holiness" is essential. Whichever we choose this is obligatory but neither garuantees it. One can be as holy or as worldly as the other. happy Christmas.
Iggy O Donovan

consolata said...

Father Ray, in light of your own sufferings with heart disease, may I ask for your prayers for a friend who died 12/2 ? He evidently ignored a severe stomach ache, refused to go to the e.r., and died in his sleep from a massive heart attack. He was 63. Though distant from me, now, once part of my extended family: in my heart, still very present.
He had left the faith of his youth: it is so hard to think, sometimes, of those to whom Death comes so suddenly and unexpectedly. Men, especially, seem to just ignore these 'referred' signals of pending heart problems.
So please Father: would say a prayer for Vincent, a fellow heart sufferer ?
Thank you so !
and thank you for this Great Site, which I visit daily, for what you write as well as the leads you give on the right, to other great thinkers. "Consolata"

Palincor IG said...

Maybe every parish needs a real core of praying Christians for this sense to re-appear. Like those prayed-in churches all over France that almost floor you with an overwhelming silence and sense of the presence of the mystery of Christ the moment you walk in.

nickbris said...

Get well soon Father Ray

Leo Flanagan said...


You were missed Fr Ray. Welcome back.

@ palincor IG. Were you thinking of Sacre Coeur Montmartre at which I had the priviledge of participating in part of their all night Eucharistic vigil earlier this year or have you other French churches in mind that you could recommend ?

Hans Georg Lundahl said...

"'If there were no God, we would still have Saint Nicholas', or so the Russians used to say."

Hmmmm ... Father Frost while banning Christmas seem to correpond to that sentiment?