The Crown of Victory … Tuesday, September 10

Rueland Frueauf d. Ä. - Christ with the Crown ...

Christ with the Crown of Thorns.

A Rosary Meditation … The Third Sorrowful Mystery, the Crowning with Thorns. Jesus wears His crown of thorns. I say “His crown of thorns” because in accepting it He owned it. And why would anyone want to accept or own something like this? He is, remember, our example. Well, it occurs to me here is that to “want” something and to “accept” something aren’t necessarily the same thing. I have, as an example, a bad back. I accept it but don’t want it. Often as not it’s not the thing itself, like the crown of thorns, that needs to be accepted but it’s what the thing represents or stands for that we need to understand and accept. When we can see clearly what the thing means, what it represents or accomplishes, it becomes easier to accept. Perhaps even desirable. When I think of my bad back as something I can offer up in reparation and for conversions it doesn’t seem so bad. The pain is a little more bearable. So how does all this apply to Christ’s thorny crown? He had gained a victory, hadn’t He? A victory over the flesh in that He was willing to sacrifice it. A victory over Satan, who wasn’t able to turn Him from His purpose. And victory over death, with an empty tomb as the proof, was within sight. He earned what we might think of, with just a wee stretch of the imagination, as the first Christian martyrs crown. What Heavenly glory is conferred upon the martyr? The martyr’s crown is always painful at the start. It’s not the discomfort that counts. It’s the victory.

Today …

St. Finian

An Irish abbot and disciple of Sts. Colman and Mochae also called Winin. He was born in Strangford, Lough, Ulster, in Ireland, a member of a royal family. Studying under Sts. Colman and Mochae, he became a monk in Strathclyde and was ordained in Rome. Returning to Ulster, Finian founded several monasteries, becoming abbot of Moville, in County Down, Ireland. He became embroiled with St. Columba, a student, over a copy of St. Jerome’s Psalter, and St. Columba had to surrender that copy to Finian. I suppose that even saints have their bad days. He also founded Holywood and Dumfries in Scotland. Finian was known for miracles, including moving a river. Now, there’s this thing called “martyrdom by pinpricks”. The person isn’t killed outright, just tormented throughout life with little things. (Please note the plural, “things”.) It’s just an opinion but I’m guessing there has never been an abbot worth his salt that wasn’t a martyr by pinpricks. Think about Finian. Founding, traveling, helping monks in their formation, correcting, reproving, loving. The next time you feel pinpricks or even thorn pricks you might like to talk with St. Finian about it.

Consider … At the crucifixion Christ wore a crown of thorns. In Heaven He now wears a glorious crown, a crown above all others. When your own personal crown here on earth seems painful remember that you get to trade it in latter.