Today was First Friday, which I always try to dedicate to praying and fasting for an end to abortion, together with others.

Today was a bit of a struggle.  I went to Adoration at my parish.  For some reason, I found it very difficult to be there, in the presence of my Lord.  It’s always a very humbling, very intense experience that can be overwhelming and almost too much to take sometimes.  But today was difficult in a different way: I felt horribly unworthy.

I just wanted to get on the floor and slink right back out of the church.  But I held myself right where I was, in my pew near the front.  I felt despair and shame at having absolutely nothing to offer… but in reality, I had my suffering to offer.  If there was even one tiny chance that it could bring about one tiny miracle and save one tiny life, then I was willing to suffer.  Giving in to the pain and discomfort was not an option–it is never an option!  Refusing to suffer is surrendering to the devil, and hasn’t he gotten his way enough?

I do hope it helped somebody in some way.  I entrust that to my Lord.  If He could make the entire universe out of nothing, He can make something out of my offering, no matter how small it may be.

As you probably know, we are also in the middle of a 40 Days for Life campaign, leading up to Election Day.  There are prayer vigils and other kinds of events going on in cities from Halifax, Nova Scotia to Pago Pago, American Samoa!  It’s really exciting and inspiring.  None of us is alone in this battle.  I’m planning to sign up for some local prayer vigils here in Dallas.  I’m also planning to attend this special Mass, which is being held at my own parish, and which will be special in more than one way.  My first Latin Mass and a pro-life event, all in one morning–and an early morning, at that?  That should light a pretty big fire under my soul!

Whew!  Yeah.  I’ll definitely be out of my comfort zone.  I know that’s a good thing, a sign of vitality and growth, but dang if it hasn’t been really tough lately!  But I’ve gotten tough myself over the last few years–not tough in a calloused, unfeeling way, but rather tough in a stout, hardy way that perfectly fits me, just like my name. I look at adversities as opportunities to flourish in some wonderful way.  The more of them I’ve got, the more I have to offer up.

It’s not just me, of course.  This kind of toughness is an essential characteristic for all practicing Catholics.  Many of whom are much better at it than I am!