“The word of Christ in us grows when we proclaim it, when we give it to the others!” ~Pope Francis, Sunday Angelus, 3-16-14
“Be humble and you will never be disturbed. It is very difficult in practice because we all want to see the result of our work. Leave it to Jesus.” ~Mother Teresa
When a group of high school students visited us in our friary, and it came time for them to leave, one hurried over to me, “Okay, so I know we don’t have a lot of time,” she said, “but I have to ask you something. Did you ever doubt? and what did you do?” There was a necessity in her eyes, an urgency in her voice that reeled me in easily, and I wanted so badly to solve everything for her in that one moment, to watch her walk away happy, smiling and without these deep concerns weighing down her soul. I had nothing to say, though. I answered her something totally inadequate, something like, “Yes, I have. You need to pray; be honest about it and pray.” It’s not an awful answer but it certainly isn’t a life changing response.
She left as fast as she came, slipping onto the bus—lost among the thirty faces behind the large tinted windows, and I thought, well, that could have gone better. But, you know, as I began to complain to Jesus that I had nothing profound to say, I realized that whatever I had to say wasn’t too important to him. His concern now was that I pray for her, that I intercede. It’s as if (and it’s not unlikely) that encounter happened not so that I could change her life in an instant with elegant words, pat myself on the back and be on my way, but that I may take her with me and carry her through my intercession and continued support. And I have prayed. I have tucked that little girl and her intentions inside my heart, and I always go back to her, and for her I will probably always be praying. I think that, more than the clever words, is efficacious.
+ Fr. Jeremiah Myriam Shryock, CFR, Ft. Worth, TX
Originally appeared at fromthefriars.blogspot.com / Reposted here with permission
Your failures do not define you. Celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation soon. You’ll be glad you did.
“Joseph was a man who always listened to God’s voice, profoundly sensitive to his hidden will, a man attentive to the messages that came to him from the depths of his heart and from above. He did not persist in pursuing his own plan for his life, he did not allow rancor to poison his soul, but was ready to place himself at the service of the thing that was presented to him in a disconcerting way. And it was in this way that he was a good man.” ~Pope Francis, December 22nd, 2013
“[Fathers] Be close to your children. They need you. Just as St. Joseph was close to Jesus in his physical, psychological and spiritual growth, you too must be guardians in age, wisdom and grace.” ~Pope Francis during his General Audience, 3-19-14
Yes, a real, live hermit.
So what does a hermit do? Well, suffice it to say that what is referred to as the eremitic life is a vocation, and has to do with what the Church calls assiduous prayer.
He prays. A lot.
Br. Rex is something of a walking contradiction. You might reasonably think that a hermit experiences some level of solitude as part of his (or her) vocation (yes, there are women hermits too). And you would be correct.
What doesn’t show up on paper, though, is that the guy is a total crack up. He’s hysterically funny, with a tremendous sense of humor and thoroughly infectious laugh. Simultaneously, he’s a deeply committed prayer warrior, who spends countless hours in intercessory prayer and takes his vocation extremely seriously.
You definitely want to be on this guy’s prayer list.
In knowing Br. Rex for the past couple years, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve called when things were rough, knowing he would take my prayer requests to his daily Holy Hour and hold them before our Lord. In fact, my debt of gratitude became so great, that a couple friends (the esteemed Jon Marc Grodi and Billy Newton) and I started a non-profit organization called Friends of Little Portion Hermitage to “support the worship of God, the eremitic life, Christ-centered solitude, contemplative silence, intercessory prayer and the spiritual works of mercy.”
Our vision is very much in line with the above: “Through the generosity of our donors, Friends of Little Portion Hermitage seeks to provide for the temporal needs of Little Portion Hermitage and the hermit who resides there. We believe consecrated life to be essential to the spiritual well-being of the Body of Christ, most especially the witness of those in consecrated life whose lives give first place to prayer for the glory of God, the good of the Church and the salvation of the world.”
So here’s where you come in. Br. Rex was lamenting to me the other day that he hasn’t received many prayer requests through the website we set up, littleportionhermitage.org – and that’s an opportunity.
At the same time, Friends of Little Portion Hermitage would like to purchase a modest hermitage for Br. Rex and his successors. Thankfully, he lives in a part of Maine where land and buildings are inexpensive, but we still need at least $50,000 to make things livable – even for a hermit.
Would you help us? Please stop by littleportionhermitage.org and send Br. Rex your prayer requests. It will make him happy, and these intentions will be treated with the utmost respect and confidence.
Also, if you can afford to make a donation towards the home for a hermit project, we would appreciate it ever so much. Let’s keep Br. Rex in prayer – and facilitate his prayers for us. Thank you for your support!
Special note: We’re happy to announce that Br. Rex will be appearing on EWTN’s The Journey Home program on Monday, April 7 at 8:00 p.m. EST. Hear the story of Br. Rex’s conversion to Christ and His Church!
– Kevin Lowry
O God, who chose the Bishop Saint Patrick to preach your glory to the peoples of Ireland, grant, through his merits and intercession, that those who glory in the name of Christ may never cease to proclaim your wondrous deeds to all. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen