Even when Jesus was around there was Judas. Jesus said the gates of the underworld would not prevail against his church. I'm sure it seemed like an unimaginably bad, hopeless time when Jesus hung on the cross, but three days later he rose again and the whole thing turned into something positive. God will turn this bad time into something good. Mark I was wondering if you quoted Sirach because it is part of tommorows readings. (The Catholic church uses the same readings in all of its masses on the same day all aroung the world). Here it is, I found it so comforting as a survivor, that I copyclipped it into a different file I was going to print and carry with me tommorow:
My son, when you come to serve the Lord,
stand in justice and fear,
prepare yourself for trials.
Be sincere of heart and steadfast,
incline your ear and receive the word of understanding,
undisturbed in time of adversity.
Wait on God, with patience, cling to him, forsake him not;
thus will you be wise in all your ways.
Accept whatever befalls you,
when sorrowful, be steadfast,
and in crushing misfortune be patient;For in fire gold and silver are tested,
and worthy people in the crucible of humiliation.
Trust God and God will help you;
trust in him, and he will direct your way;
keep his fear and grow old therein.
You who fear the Lord, wait for his mercy,
turn not away lest you fall.
You who fear the Lord, trust him,
and your reward will not be lost.
You who fear the Lord, hope for good things,
for lasting joy and mercy.
You who fear the Lord, love him,
and your hearts will be enlightened.
Study the generations long past and understand;
has anyone hoped in the Lord and been disappointed?
Has anyone persevered in his commandments and been forsaken?
has anyone called upon him and been rebuffed?
Compassionate and merciful is the Lord;
he forgives sins, he saves in time of trouble
and he is a protector to all who seek him in truth.
The catholic mass is online every day (30 minutes in length) at http://www.themass.com,
tommorow they will read that reading and talk about it. So will Father Bob (the Dean). Dean, can you print your sermon for tommorow here?