With the recent leak of an FBI memo in which Traditional Catholics are targeted as potential dangers, piggybacking on the sad release of the motu proprio Traditiones Custodes nearly two years ago, it’s safe to say that the attacks on our faith are in full swing, and if the FBI memo were allowed to be carried out, they would spread to us here in America in ways that we have not yet been accustomed to. Our very lives would be disrupted and overturned by an organization that was set up in order to protect us and it would likely spread to include all Christian denominations. And yet, these are the kinds of things that Jesus tells us we must be ready for. He tells us that because the world hated Him, it would hate us, His followers, also. We must be ready for persecutions and trials that are on a large scale, because He suffered for us to the point of death. Are we ready for them?
A simple way to prepare ourselves for bigger trials and crosses is to deny ourselves small things and have patience with the small crosses that we endure every day. Once we can trust God in the small things and be comfortable with small deprivations for love of Him, it fortifies and prepares us for the bigger things that befall us. If we truly ask for this grace and desire it, God will present us with opportunities to practice the virtues that we need in order to accomplish our duty to be faithful to Him in small and big matters. Purposely taking up our crosses and following Christ day after day will make it easier over time and ensure that we can overcome any kind of persecution that comes our way. And once we show that we are worthy of the bigger things and that we can handle them, we can be sure that they will come.
With Lent coming up in just two days, it is the perfect time to begin preparing for the bigger persecutions that will later come our way as followers of Christ by means of the small sacrifices that we make for Lent. When we do these things for love of Christ, they cause our love to grow to the point where we are ready for attacks on our faith and on our person because of this faith. We will be assured that God will be with us through these persecutions and will give us strength to bear them, whether they come from within the Church or within our own government.