Our seventh grandchild: Maximilian Michael Williams
I HOPE you don’t mind if I take a brief moment to share a few personal things. It has been an emotional week that has taken us from the tip of ecstasy to the edge of the abyss…
I’ve introduced to you several times my daughter, Tianna Williams, whose sacred artwork is becoming better known in North America (her latest is Servant of God Thea Bowman, seen below).
After her daughter, Clara, they have been unable to have another child for the past five years. It was so difficult to see Tianna walk into a room where her sisters or cousins were cuddling their newborn and growing families, and know the grief she was carrying. As such, we offered countless Rosaries for her, praying that God would bless her womb with another child.
Then, last year, she suddenly conceived. For nine months we held our breath until, last week, Maximilian Michael was born. We have all been bathed in tears of joy at what is truly a miracle and seemingly an answer to prayer.
But last night, those tears turned cold when we learned that Tianna was suddenly hemorrhaging. The details were scant; there was a rush to the hospital… and the next thing we heard is that she was being taken by air ambulance to the city. Our “Valentine’s Dinner” suddenly became unpalatable as old wounds reopened — I was 19 years old when I watched my parents go through my sister’s death.
For I know well that God is the author of life and death; that He operates in ways that we do not understand; that to one He grants a miracle and to another He quietly says “no”; that even the holiest life and most faith-filled prayers are not guarantees that everything will go one’s way — or at least, the way we want it to. As we drove home through the night, I sunk into the reality that we could very well lose this precious girl.
After hours of waiting, we learned that Tianna finally emerged from surgery. She has been bleeding from her uterus and is presently being monitored. In fact, “she’s had 5 units of blood, 2 units of plasma, 4 doses of something to help with clotting, and 7 units of lactated ringer’s. Pretty much a total replacement of her blood volume”, her husband Michael wrote just moments ago.
All of this is a swift reminder of how fleeting life is. How we are truly like the grass that springs up in the morning and whithers by night. How this life, since the Fall of Adam, is no longer a destination but a passage to what was intended from the beginning: communion with the Holy Trinity in a perfected creation. As we see so much suffering around the world, the groans of this creation can be heard everywhere as the light of Christ dims and the darkness of evil attempts to blot out the light of Truth (once again). This is why we call it the “mystery of iniquity”: it is a true mystery how suffering, in the end, will serve the purposes of God. But that mystery always gives way to the Mystery of God’s omnipotence, the certainty of His victory, and the promise that “all things work to good for those who love Him.” cf. Rom 8:28
Please, if you would, could you say a little prayer that my daughter recovers? At the same time, let us pray together that all the collective suffering in our fallen world somehow brings this generation back to the Father, like prodigal sons and daughters…
With that, it is the time of year when I must close this letter with another appeal for your financial support for this ministry (life has to go on). You already know how I hate this… how I wish I was an independently wealthy businessman who wouldn’t have to pass the hat. However, this ministry has thousands of dollars in monthly expenses and, unfortunately, money still does not grow on trees (despite my best efforts here on the little farm). Moreover, in this period of hyperinflation, ministries like mine are the first to notice. Nonetheless,
…the Lord ordered that those who preach the gospel should live by the gospel. (1 Corinthians 9:14)
And so it is. But this word also holds true: “Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.” (Matt 10:8) As I have said in the past, instead of writing and selling books — which could now be in the dozens — the writings here are at no cost, as well as the videos we produce. This continues to be a full-time ministry for me — from the hours of prayer, research and writing, to producing videos, to corresponding with numerous souls through email and social media. At the bottom of this writing is a Donate button. If this ministry is a grace to you, if it is any help at all, and if it is not a burden to you, please consider helping me to continue this work to help others like you as part of your almsgiving for this coming Lenten season. I would also like to thank you at this time for your support in the past, the outpouring of love, encouragement, and wisdom. In fact, some of the biggest donors to this ministry last Fall were priests, believe it or not. I can’t tell you what that means to me to have their prayers and unity of spirit, as well as those of the numerous convents who keep this ministry aloft with their contemplative prayer and intercession.
I only appeal for support, at most, twice a year, so this is it for now. Last, I appeal most of all for your intercession. The past few months have brought some of the most intense spiritual combat in my life (and I suspect many of you are going through it too). But Jesus is faithful. He has never left my side, even though I have left His at times through “my fault, my most grievous fault.” Please pray that I may persevere to the end, and having run the good race, I too may be saved.
How shall I make a return to the LORD
for all the good he has done for me?
The cup of salvation I will take up,
and I will call upon the name of the LORD.
My vows to the LORD I will pay
in the presence of all his people.
Thank you so much for helping me help souls…
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|↑1||cf. Rom 8:28|