Monday, June 17, 2013

Stacy Trasancos and the sign of the cross...

Stacy Trasancos rightly observes that, "The sign of the cross is the sacramental seal that marks the forehead of those who belong to Christ" while noting that the early Church Fathers "knew the seal brings protection against demons." ("The gift of the 'sphragis,'" The Catholic Free Press, June 14, 2013 edition).

It is true that the sign of the cross "strengthens us in temptations and difficulties" (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2157).  But this sacramental does not automatically bring protection against demons as some sort of ersatz magical wand against the diabolical.

Sacramentals are sacred signs, whether objects such as scapulars or medals or holy water, or actions such as the sign of the cross, whose effects are obtained by the prayer of the Church (Canon 1166).  Unlike the sacraments, which were instituted by Christ and which effect grace by virtue of themselves, sacramentals are instituted by the Church and impart grace according to the disposition of the recipients and the intercession of the Church.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches us that, "Sacramentals do not confer the grace of the Holy Spirit in the way that the sacraments do, but by the Church's prayer, they prepare us to receive grace and dispose us to cooperate with it.  'For well-disposed members of the faithful, the liturgy of the sacraments and sacramentals sanctifies almost every event of their lives with the divine grace which flows from the Paschal mystery of the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Christ.  From this source all sacraments and sacramentals draw their power..'" (CCC, 1670, citing Sacrosanctum concilium, No. 61).

As Christians we are more than conquerors through the shed Blood of Jesus Christ (Romans 8: 37-39).  The Lord Jesus gives His people who are faithful to Him (are well-disposed) the power and authority over demonic forces.  But if one is not living an authentically Catholic life - avoiding mortal sin while making use of the sacraments of the Church (including the sacrament of reconciliation), daily prayer and Scripture reading, one can make the sign of the cross and it surely will not serve as a seal which brings protection against demons.

I knew a woman who made frequent use of the sign of the cross while serving as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist at Saint Joseph's Parish in Gardner, Massachusetts.  Unfortunately, this woman also promoted abortion and pro-abortion politicians such as John Olver while engaging in sexual intercourse outside of marriage and making no secret of it.

Sacramentals are most helpful to us in the spiritual life if we are living an authentically Catholic life and are well-disposed to receiving grace from Christ and His Church.  Otherwise, we use them in vain.

1 comment:

Unknown said...


Eli Eli
lama sabachtani !
Is that what you think, My child ?
calm down, trust Me, don't be riled
I am always at your side,
don't forget, also for you I died.
The world makes a lot of noise
those who don't follow, it gladly destroys.
I work in silence to open the doors
I will provide you the perfect oars
to steer your boat in My direction
which will request a lot of circumspection.
For you I don't set exorbitant expectations
nor turn away when I see your frustrations
I never promised you life would be easy
more often than not it can be very cheesy.
Stay with Me, My child, don't ever leave Me
I hold you tight each time you want to flee
you are so much Mine, I need you, I need you
when it's difficult I pull you through.
I promised you the victory
which presently might seem contradictory
but know My child that GOD NEVER LIES
the way I will act will be a surprise.
Come rest at My Heart while My Love is mounting
and every hair on your head I have been counting.
Walk in My footsteps it's your only security
to continue your life in innocence and purity.
This world is heading for total destruction
'cause it surrendered to the evil one's seduction.
Offer Me all your doubts and hardships
and I will turn them into Divine Worships.
I wait for you, My daughter
to refresh your soul with My Salvation Water.

Your Jesus, Your Lord and Savior who loves you more than you can imagine.
Rita Biesemans June 17th 2013

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