Friday, 2/ 17/1
Jesus sad, “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself.” That leaves us wondering in what ways we must deny ourselves.
When I was a seventeen-year-old novice the priest told us to practice all kinds of mortification. We were to punish our boyish yearnings, putting them to death. We humorously referred to it as “doing a little morto.”
In dust-mopping the bedrooms I came on one boy’s “morto.” Dave would neatly line up his shoes under his bed, then, he would put three pebbles in each shoe to keep him from loving himself too much.
Does the Lord want us to put pebbles in our shoes? Does he want us to put salt in our coffee? Are we meant to devise little types of self- torture? Well, maybe for seventeen-year-olds it was the right way of getting across the need for “toughing it.”
The rest of us are only bound to accept the troubles that come our way. In ages past the Church went wrong in following the Greek philosophers who saw the body as the enemy of the soul. That led to heavy penances that led to poor health. We have come around to seeing that a healthy body is the ideal companion for a healthy soul.