Sometimes the Scripture readings from the Mass are meant to comfort the afflicted, in the solidarity of affliction, while afflicting the comfortable in the discomfort of having to admit that there is affliction! For the worst experience an afflicted Catholic can have is to be afflicted by a far too comfortable Catholic!
Today's readings: http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/032213.cfm
"I hear so many disparaging me, 'Terror from every side!' Denounce him! Let us denounce him!'" Jeremiah 20:10
Raised as a good little Catholic boy, attending Catholic school, listening to whatever the nuns taught me, I was rudely awakened (years later) to the Cafeteria Catholicism and heresy taught, and practiced, in the Blessed Edmund Rice School for Pastoral Ministry (in Arcadia, Florida--within the Diocese of Venice). Along with my experience of working toward my Bachelor's degree at Barry University (a Catholic University?), I was 'denounced, denounced' with 'terror from every side!' But why, you may ask? Because, when the professors (at the Rice School) taught that the infancy narratives of Jesus were ahistorical, when they taught that Satan doesn't literally exist, when they mocked John Paul II and argued for women priests, when they couldn't bare to call God Father, but stumbled awkwardly with 'Lord, God,' and anything but 'Father,' when they practiced the New Age Enneagram in workshops, when they (Barry University Theology Professors) denied the literal resurrection of Jesus Christ, when they denied apostolic succession, I spoke the truth, only to be labeled a crank, and to be blacklisted by the diocese! I even went so far as to tell this to Bishop Nevins (now Emeritus) face to face, at a Peace and Justice conference, only to have him promise 'he would look into it.'
"The waves of death encircle me, the torrents of Belial burst on me; the cords of Sheol girdle me, the snares of death were before me." Psalm 18:4-5
As a longterm unemployed Catholic, there is nothing more painful than hearing, week in and week out, sugar coated sermons which avoid any mention of the current problems of the world, delivered to a bunch of Lexus driving, country club attending parishioners, who pray the 'Stations of the Cross!' Yes, everyone has personal maladies, and no one escapes suffering. Yet, affluence can, and will, make for a nation of cafeteria Catholics who avoid the necessary prophetic social confrontation, all to keep their comfy and cushy place in society.
And this includes priests, pastors and bishops!
Poll shows that most American Catholics are dining in the Cafeteria! http://www.usnews.com/opinion/blogs/mary-kate-cary/2009/03/31/poll-shows-american-catholics-go-with-their-faith-over-their-religion
"The Jews fetched stones to stone him... 'We are not stoning you for doing a good work but for blasphemy: you are only a man and you claim to be God.'" John 10:31, 33
In America today, it is a capitol offense to be a Catholic who really believes what the Catholic Church officially teaches! As AMERICAN catholics, we are allowed to practice good works in secular philanthropy. This is acceptable and PC. But God forbid (or should I say god forbid) an American CATHOLIC practices their faith in any true shape or form! This is blasphemy! Even in some Catholic parish settings!
The scourge of our time is PC! http://archive.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2002/4/4/121115.shtml/
God help us! Even if there are very few of us left.