The Icon of Selflessness
Through all of the actions and words of His life on earth, Jesus reminded… demonstrated what it was like to be the servant of others. Imagine — the God of the universe – washing the feet of his followers.
Selflessness is (in a sense) disinterested service. It doesn’t matter at all about the relationship we have or don’t have with the other person. We are called to treat the ‘slave’ as we would treat the person in royalty. And we are not to look to the reward or recognition we will gain.
In my ministry, I use Sacrifice Beads – small 10-bead rosary-like bead sets. There are credited to St. Therese of Lisieux, the Little Flower. She moved a bead whenever she performed a (mostly unseen, unrecognized) sacrifice for someone else. Pick up a safety pin – put it where it belongs. Contact Deacon Tom @ firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like a free set of Sacrifice Beads along with a description of their history and current day use.
While my focus is on Jesus or His saints when I start discussing selflessness, let us not forget parents who demonstrate selfless love. Let us especially think of and pray for parents of special-needs children. So too, we acknowledge teachers who give so much, sometimes even out of their own pocket. Let us not forget service personnel who give, as well as police and firemen. And in our churches, there are so often people who are the quiet and mostly unrecognized doers of the work of set up and clean up.
We are to imitate the Messiah. And if we are to imitate Him, quiet selflessness is one mandatory characteristic of being a Christian.
FEATURE INTERVIEW FOR COURAGEOUS MOVIE
CV S Selflessness Show Notes
Dear Friends of Catholic Vitamins. Selflessness – a word that hardly fits into daily conversation of thought. And yet — the icon of Christ the Great High Priest is a reminder of the priesthood we all are called to.
The image you see in this icon is especially related to this week’s podcast. Whether the reader or the listener is a priest or a mother or a father or a deacon or a nun — whether a policeman or a fireman or a deputy or a soldier or a sailor, each of us is called to surrender of self to others. It’s the way to recognize Christ in others. It’s a way to honor Christ in others.
Iconographer Marek Czarnecki of Seraphic Restorations in Meriden, Connecticut, graciously gave the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops the rights to use the icon of Christ the Great High Priest during the Year for Priests. The artist allows anyone to use or reproduce the icon, as long as it is not for any commercial purpose, (i.e., it cannot be reprinted to be sold or resold, or reprinted on something that will be sold). If this is the intent, they need to contact the artist for permission to license the image, under written contract.
This icon is “based on a fifteenth century Greek prototype; here Christ is shown in Latin Rite vestments with a gold pelican over His heart, the ancient symbol of self-sacrifice. The borders contain a grapevine and altar prepared for the celebration of the liturgy of the Mass; in the borders are smaller icons of Melchizedek and St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney.”
Gaze into the eyes of Christ on this icon for several seconds and you will feel its heavenly impact. Imagine this icon — this holy image adorning your bathroom mirror, your kitchen window or some other highly noticeable place. Jesus holds a Scripture reminding His priests to ‘lay down his life for his sheep.’ So too are you called dad. Or mom. Or police officer.
That’s what our effort on this week’s show is about. We invite you to be with us as we take a few moments to talk about the movie COURAGEOUS with Kris Fuhr of the marketing team for this exciting and message-oriented movie. It’s brought to you by the same team that gave us FIREPROOF — the great marriage repair movie of a couple years ago.
ABOUT SELFLESSNESS and SHARING IN THE PRIESTHOOD
The priesthood of all believers (Monsignor Anthony A. La Femina)
“While the Lord Jesus is the sole Priest of the New Covenant, He made all members of His Church share by grace in His unique priesthood. His Church is “a kingdom of priests for His God and Father” (Rev 1:6; cf. 1 Peter 2:5,9).
These priests — both men and women, adults and children — are the “authentic worshippers” who “worship the Father in Spirit and truth” (John 4:23). The priesthood of all the faithful is called the Baptismal or Common Priesthood. The faithful receive this priestly consecration with the Sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation and exercise it by taking part in Christian worship “in Spirit and truth”, by the reception of the other sacraments, and by the witness of their holy, prayerful and courageously virtuous lives in accord with their particular vocations” (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 1546; Lumen Gentium, 10).
FRANCISCAN SPEAKER SEGMENT: SISTER ANN SHIELDS
We don’t stop with the movie about the selfness nature of a police officer. We bring you another mini segment from a Franciscan University speaker talk at one of the priest and deacon conferences at Franciscan. We are so blessed to have the permission of this premier Catholic school of higher education to play portions of talks given at their summer conferences.
The talk we picked for today is by a wonderful speaker and author, Sister Ann Shields. She is speaking to a gathering of mostly priests (some deacons in attendance). She reminds us of the ‘terms and conditions’ of selflessness. We hope you enjoy listening to Sister. I’ve read some of her books and she is a most inspiring and holy woman of God.
We are so blessed to feature the seminarians from the St. John Vianney Seminary in the Archdiocese of Denver, Denver, CO. These men produced a sampler CD with various selections — and you can buy a copy (or heck, just make a donation to the seminary) by going to their website: www.sjvdenver.com
The two songs we picked are:
The Mass Song — A beautiful combination of meditation, words and music from the Mass done in Denver. I just loved this.
Panis Angelicus — A song that almost always brings me to tears. The words Panis Angelicus mean ‘bread of angels.’ What a beautiful thought — and yet the angels can’t feast on this Consecrated Bread. But we can. Thank You, Jesus. Thank You.