Day 24 – Let Freedom Ring: Freedom from Consumerism

by Fr Richard Heilman | July 30, 2020 12:05 am

Let Freedom Ring: Freedom from Consumerism

My Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,
At a word from You, the devil and his minions flee in terror.
You are the source of all truth. You are the source of all strength.
By the power of Your Cross and Resurrection, we beseech You, O Lord
To extend Your saving arm and to send Your holy angels
To defend us as we do battle with Satan and his demonic forces.
Exorcise, we pray, that which oppresses Your Bride, The Church,
So that within ourselves, our families, our parishes, our dioceses, and our nation
We may turn fully back to You in all fidelity and trust.
Lord, we know if You will it, it will be done.
Give us the perseverance for this mission, we pray.
Amen.

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception … pray for us
St. Joseph … pray for us
St. Michael the Archangel … pray for us
(the patron of your parish) … pray for us
(your confirmation saint) … pray for us

 

“Freedom from Consumerism” by Fr. Jim Altman

Dear family, if there was one word that might underlie the modern day “Fall of mankind” it very well could be consumerism. We’ve heard it said that we spend a lot of money we do not have on a lot of things we do not need – especially around Christmas. Surely we all are horrified by the annual satanic feast known as “Black Friday,” the day after “Thanksgiving,” when we reveal just how little thanks we actually give God for all the stuff we already have and rush out in the wee hours of the morning to stand in line – in all kinds of weather – to be first into some place to buy a bunch more other stuff. Dear family, the only Black Friday a good Catholic knows is Good Friday, for we know that on that blackest day in human history, when it seemed Lucifer had his victory, Easter Sunday is coming. How much less would we consume on the satanic holiday of Black Friday if our eyes were focused on The Resurrection of Jesus the Lord on Easter Sunday?

Consumerism. It is a “compensating behavior.” It is a behavior that compensates for the hole within us, the hurts and wounds we have accumulated, the wounded-ness and brokenness from which we all suffer. When we have a headache, we have our go-to drug of choice, Exedrin or Tylenol or whatever. When we are hurting in our hearts and souls, we have our go-to compensating behavior. Our compensating behaviors are as addictive as any drug or any other vice into which we fall. We use it to compensate for our suffering. Such is consumerism.  As with any addiction or vice, it only is a temporary anesthetic, something that relieves the suffering only temporarily. Ultimately, it is a suffering that only can be healed and filled by Divine Love.

Why is it that humanity is so given to falling so readily into compensating behaviors like consumerism and so quick to forsaking the Divine Healer? Why is it that we think more stuff ever will be enough?

It is well understood that affluence is a Faith-killer. When we have “all we need” – indeed way more than we need – when we can rely upon ourselves to obtain or accumulate what we think we want – we tend to forsake God. The day we think we do not have to rely upon God, is the day we begin to drift away, very quickly immersing ourselves in immediate gratification through our own devices. No so slowly, but most certainly, we forget Jesus’s admonition:

“If God so clothes the grass of the field, which grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow, will he not much more provide for you, O you of little faith?  So do not worry and say, ‘What are we to eat?’ or ‘What are we to drink?’ or ‘What are we to wear?’  All these things the pagans seek. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.  But seek first the kingdom [of God] and his righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides.”  Mt 6:30-33

Anecdotally, Ireland once was very poor yet, at the same time, a rock-bed of Catholicism. Enter the economic boom of the 1990s-early 2000’s. It was time of such spectacular economic growth in Ireland that it had its own nickname: Celtic Tiger. Faith fell away. Interestingly, Ireland still has about the lowest divorce rate in the Western world, less than a third of the United States. However, recently Ireland legalized abortion and same-sex marriage and – not in small part due to the horrific failure amongst bishops and the abuse scandal – faith has decreased significantly. Similarly, from the first time I went on pilgrimage to the Sanctuary of Divine Mercy in Poland in 2001, to the last time in 2017, there not only has been a very visible increase in affluence but, sadly, an increase of the seeds of immorality being sown in the public square (Beware the young woman holding an umbrella in the broad daylight).

Here’s the thing about consumerism. We already contemplated the Life Lesson of Adam and Eve – how nothing ever is enough. Far worse than that, consumerism cannot heal. Only the Divine Healer can heal the wounds within us. Only Divine Mercy can heal.

Dear family, we can build ourselves a bigger house, surround ourselves with more stuff in the house, get a bigger SUV to go get more stuff for the house – but nothing compares to being in a genuine Catholic Church, God’s house, where His Son is present in the Real Presence.  Nothing we can buy, nothing we can accumulate, absolutely nothing, will heal our hearts and minds and souls like being in the presence of the Real Presence. That being the case, why is it that we spend a lot more time at work, working so hard to earn some money, to pay the bills that arise from buying – consuming – so much stuff we don’t need? All we really have to do is spend a little less time consuming, and a little more time with Jesus.

We used to have a Catholic devotion, a Catholic tradition, of stopping on to the Church daily, even for just a few minutes. We were born and raised knowing that Jesus not only is present, but He waits for us in the Tabernacle. He thirsts for us to come and keep Him company. Do we understand that if we just spent a little bit of time in His Real Presence every day, something we do need, we would feel a lot less need to spend a lot of money to consume so much other stuff we do not need?

Prayer of Reparation

My Lord and my God,
We have allowed the temptation of the devil to move our hearts toward consumerism.
We have fallen into countless times of sinful buying stuff we do not need with money we do not have.
We do this all to fill the emptiness within us, to salve the wounds within us.
We turn so readily to consuming things of this world, instead of detaching ourselves from things of this world and attaching ourselves to You.
We spend so much time and effort and money consuming and yet we still are not happy.
We turn to You Lord, in our weakness, and beg Your forgiveness for the consumption of temporal goods that stand in the way of our devotion to You.
We love You, Lord, and we beg for the wisdom and strength to love You more.
We know, Lord, if You will it, it will be done.
Trusting in You, we offer our prayer to You who live and reign forever and ever.
Amen.

Prayer of Exorcism

Lord God of Heaven and Earth,
In Your power and goodness, You created all things.
You set a path for us to walk on and a way to an eternal relationship.
By the strength of Your arm and Word of Your mouth
Cast from your Holy Church every fearful deceit of the Devil
Drive from us manifestations of the demonic that oppress us and beckon us to faithlessness and fear.
Still the lying tongue of the devil and his forces so that we may act freely and faithfully to Your will.
Send Your holy angels to cast out all influence that the demonic entities in charge of fear have planted in Your church.
Free us, our families, our parish, our diocese, and our country from all trickery and deceit perpetrated by the Devil and his hellish legions.
Trusting in Your goodness Lord,
We know if You will it, it will be done in unity with Your Son and the Holy Spirit, One God for ever and ever.
Amen.

Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.

God, the Father of Heaven,
have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Spirit,
have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God,
have mercy on us. 

Blood of Christ, only-begotten Son
of the Eternal Father, save us.
Blood of Christ, Incarnate Word of God, save us.
Blood of Christ, of the New and Eternal Testament, etc.
Blood of Christ, falling upon the earth in the Agony,
Blood of Christ, shed profusely in the Scourging,
Blood of Christ, flowing forth in the Crowning with Thorns,
Blood of Christ, poured out on the Cross,
Blood of Christ, price of our salvation,
Blood of Christ, without which there is no forgiveness,
Blood of Christ, Eucharistic drink and refreshment of souls,
Blood of Christ, stream of mercy,
Blood of Christ, victor over demons,
Blood of Christ, courage of martyrs,
Blood of Christ, strength of confessors,
Blood of Christ, bringing forth virgins,
Blood of Christ, help of those in peril,
Blood of Christ, relief of the burdened,
Blood of Christ, solace in sorrow,
Blood of Christ, hope of the penitent,
Blood of Christ, consolation of the dying,
Blood of Christ, peace and tenderness of hearts,
Blood of Christ, pledge of Eternal Life,
Blood of Christ, freeing souls from purgatory,
Blood of Christ, most worthy of all glory and honor,

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us.

Thou hast redeemed us, O Lord, in Thy Blood.
R. And made us, for our God, a kingdom.

Let us pray.
Almighty and eternal God, Thou hast appointed Thine only-begotten Son the Redeemer of the world and willed to be appeased by his blood. Grant, we beg of Thee, that we may worthily adore this price of our salvation and through its power be safeguarded from the evils of the present life so that we may rejoice in its fruits forever in heaven. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

To see the Goals, Methods and Levels of “Let Freedom Ring,” go HERE[1].

 

ENLIST IN THE UNITED STATES GRACE FORCE
(Please recruit family and friends to enlist!)

 

[2]

 

Endnotes:
  1. HERE: https://usgraceforce.com/let-freedom-ring-40-days-to-freedom-from-the-devil/
  2. [Image]: https://visitor.r20.constantcontact.com/manage/optin?v=001ESuSGaJpYPCG2iUdd4j4bkKwd4gkh2ZUVbam_Ty9rClOUvzV2eWINoaRbVG-XTy6vyyG5ihMlzLKzz34XcWD7QTPCtiVbNfqbm9Db9EAVkLsadcJTRuzLlIqqEyw0h_epLE4PHiHAlp0LDCVz2Z0_AxWO43uBupW

Source URL: https://usgraceforce.com/day-24-let-freedom-ring-freedom-from-consumerism/