“The thing the church needs most today is the ability to heal wounds and to warm the hearts of the faithful; it needs nearness, proximity. I see the church as a field hospital after battle. It is useless to ask a seriously injured person if he has high cholesterol and about the level of his blood sugars! You have to heal his wounds. Then we can talk about everything else. Heal the wounds, heal the wounds. … And you have to start from the ground up.”
September 19, 2013
Some people, who think they are normal, hated the fact that the Pope said this to the press. Many Catholics think they are “normal” and do not want to identify with the millions of the so-called “unwashed,” unhealed Catholics who come from disjointed, disadvantaged, dysfunctional families. This view, that some people do not need healing, is a popular idea among those who have not reflected on their sins, imperfections, and generational spirits, which effect their personalities, even to the point of ruining their lives.
A field hospital is one in the midst of battle. The Pope was referring to several layers of battles, as he has addressed these before. The battles are well-known fields—the world, the flesh, and the devil. Pope Francis has spoken about spiritual warfare, and is aware of the dangers of demonic influences. Families, as Father Ripperger of the order of exorcist, the priests of Mater Dolorosa, notes in many talks, are victims of spiritual warfare through generational demons. There are special prayers for dealing with these, and the common charismatic idea that family trees can be healed is completely false. One can only pray, after discerning through the intercession of Our Lady of Sorrows, for one’s self, one’s spouse, one’s siblings and one’s children. Period. Authority in spiritual warfare is key.
On the field of battle, those who have not dealt with demonic influences in their lives are vulnerable to depression, loss of faith, and ennui. The Church is weakened when people do not face demonic influences in their lives. By the way, dead people in families cannot be healed, as some charismatic groups believe. Once a person has died, they face Christ in their particular judgement and go to heaven, hell, or purgatory. Our prayers cannot influence the past. People die with their free will choices of life.
As to the flesh, the field of battle is rife with our own concupiscence, our own imperfections and sins, our own tendencies to sin. Again, normality must include frequent, even weekly confession, and daily prayer to root out the evils of the flesh, inherited from Adam and Eve’s fall from grace. Actually, this should be the beginning of healing. We begin with our own examinations of conscience and more sensitivity to sin, even asking our guardian angels to point out sin immediately in our lives. All sin can be rooted out, through prayer and spiritual warfare against our own weaknesses. Hence, the saints fought concupiscence and sin through mortification, fasting, and other penances.
The world’s area of battle is, perhaps, most clear. Why we have dysfunctional families, and I have met few families in my entire life which are NOT dysfunctional, but holy, is partly because of the world’s stress on family life, including financial hardships, the inability to sustain commitment because of a lack of support from the community, which sees nothing wrong with divorce, or even adultery and so on. The world’s crushing offence on the family is perhaps the most obvious front line of battle.
We are all wounded, even people from so-called “good families.” Woundedness can be carried on for seven generations or more. Woundedness causes wounds in our offspring. The Church does need to have the ability to heal wounds, and how is this done?
Through the love of the community….healing takes place only through love, not throwing money at charities, but individual contact, face-to-fact encounters. We are all our brothers and sisters “keepers.” Cain’s reply to God was a cry of defence after the first murder on earth. The passage from Genesis is worth re-reading.
Genesis 4:8-10 Douay-Rheims
8 And Cain said to Abel his brother: Let us go forth abroad. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel, and slew him.
9 And the Lord said to Cain: Where is thy brother Abel? And he answered, I know not: am I my brother’s keeper?
10 And he said to him: What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth to me from the earth.
God is very clear here, that the dead man’s cry for attention has been answered. God appears to Cain. Cain lies, after the murder. Then, he blasphemes, as he IS and he knows full well, that he is or was his brother’s keeper.
Those who are wounded cry out to God daily-and those who are dead. The hospital in the field of battle attempts to reach out to those crying in the trenches, just as the good chaplains and medics in the army do the same today. We need more men and women who are willing to heal the wounds of all those who are coming from unnatural, nor normal families, and that is the vast majority of people today. Can we respond by first healing ourselves and our families, and reaching out at the same time? Love brings healing. Love brings life where there is death. Christ’s love is the answer to the battle against the world, the flesh, and the devil.
JMJ, pray for us
God is good,