There is no doubt that we need an intervention. The members of The Laity have been praying for one – indeed, many of us are praying for a Christmas Miracle, using the words of Monsignor Charles Pope:
I ask you, Lord Jesus, to inspire bishops and priests through the example of St. Charles Borromeo. Remove whatever fear or sloth keeps so many of us sinfully silent and strangely uninvolved while the culture and the Church collapse around us. May bishops attend carefully to the formation of priests and give them good example through clear teaching and heroic witness to the truth of the Faith. May priests and deacons, too, have a tender care for their people and a zeal to drive away, through preaching and teaching, the wolves of error, dissent, deceit, and half-truth. May we all celebrate the sacraments with devotion, respect for norms, and sacrificial love for our people.
We are very pleased to report that our own Archbishop Leonard Blair is channeling the same hope through St. Charles Borromeo during the New England bishops pilgrimage to Rome, taking place this week:
In his homily, Archbishop Blair reflected on the day’s memorial of St. Charles Borromeo and read a description of the saint by Bishop Antonio Seneca of Anagni, Italy, who had lived in the same house with him.
St. Charles, the archbishop read, was “vigilant in rooting out vice, benevolent in correction, just in judgment, loving in punishment, patient of human weakness, quick to avenge disobedience, his justice was united with kindness, his severity with gentleness and peace. He was a diligent guardian of wholesome discipline both in priests and people.”
Archbishop Blair said that the Italian bishop’s description of the saint “took place in a church that had seemed to be failing, really failing.”
We at The Laity join Archbishop Blair in his closing word of his homily:
“I will close with one saying ascribed to St. Charles Borromeo that is perhaps the most important for us,” he said: “Souls are won on one’s knees. And we need to be men of faith and of prayer.”