Looking ahead to next Saturday, for many it is known as “Opening Day” for deer hunting. Let’s pray for safety for all hunters and those involved or traveling. St. Hubert is the patron of Hunters, so do invoke him as you go out into the woods.
We are coming to the end of the liturgical year but I would like to share part of Bishop Callahan’s article from Catholic Life Jan/Feb 2022. He is holding up St. Leo and the bold teaching of the faith he offered to the world of his day (the 400’s). “I have chosen Pope St. Leo as a leader for the beginning of this new year, primarily since he led the efforts and cleared the Church of his time from the heresy called Pelagianism. Pelagius and his followers believed and taught that we can perfect ourselves without God’s grace and Divine assistance. Pelagianism denied Original Sin and thus the significance of baptism. Pelagianism, in one way or another, still affects the society of today since we still believe, erroneously, that we can ‘save ourselves.’ Thus, our reliance on things and devices other than God, prayer, a spiritual life and, indeed, the sacraments themselves, are not necessary in our lives. It is not too difficult to see the trail of this destruction in our age. Pope St. Leo and St. Augustine are still the principle teachers in refuting this heresy. We seriously need their help and can still learn greatly from their wisdom.
One other heretical teaching that was beaten back by Pope St. Leo, and the Fathers of his times, was called Manichaeism. This error is also prevalent in our own time. This heresy denied the goodness of the human body. We are still effected by this error in our basic failure to understand and respect human life and our tendencies to objectify sex and the misuse of our human sexuality, in general. Our great Pope St. Paul VI attacked this evil among us when he wrote the incredibly important and significant encyclical Humane Vitae in 1968, addressing the beauty of human sexuality and human family love.”
We have wonderful teachings revealing the value of each person, the gift of our human sexuality, and the blessings of grace that our God wants to pour out upon us whenever we open our hearts to those graces. Bishop Callahan is right, there are those errors that remain with us. We need to be aware of them and the impact they play in society and in our own families. St. Leo was a great teacher of the faith since he taught truth that is rooted in love, Jesus Himself. Let us be encouraged by the saint’s example and intercession in our lives to do the same in our day in a world that says “whatever” or desires to cancel anyone who thinks there is truth, especially rooted in Christ.