Dear brother and sister in Christ,
Due to the several health issues I am confronting at this time, I felt it only fair to bring you up-to-date as to my current condition.
I have been diagnosed with Congestive Heart Failure, in which the heart muscle is not efficiently pumping enough volume of blood throughout the body. I have been placed on some special meds and may, most likely, have to have an internal defibrillator/pacemaker unit installed in my chest at some future point, and am currently under the care of a cardiologist (heart specialist).
Due to my ongoing heart issue, which apparently has existed for some time unbeknownst to anyone, both of my kidneys are at risk of failing. They are now at the upper end of stage 3 renal disease (Stage 5 is complete kidney failure). I am also under the care of a nephrologist (kidney specialist).
To top everything off, I am having surgery tomorrow (Monday) for a severe hernia in my lower abdomen, which sometimes makes it very difficult for me to walk and focus on what needs to be done due to the extreme pain.
I have accepted and offered these crosses, at times difficult to bear, for each of you, your loved ones, and your many needs, as long as what you are praying for is pleasing to the will of God. I also continue to offer whatever crosses our Most Merciful Lord has chosen for me to carry for the conversion of poor sinners throughout the world who have lost their way in this life, and for the holy souls in Purgatory.
Saint Maria Faustina and Saint Padre Pio are the examples of two suffering souls in this life who I am trying to follow the best I can, who surrendered themselves in complete humility to the will of God for the good of the Body of Christ.
This brings to mind the words of Saint Faustina, “…when we suffer much we have a great chance to show God that we love Him; but when we suffer little we have less occasion to show God our love; and when we do not suffer at all, our love is then neither great nor pure. By the grace of God, we can attain a point where suffering will become a delight to us, for love can work such things in pure souls” (Diary, 303).
And Saint Paul writes in his Epistle to the church in Colossae, “Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his body, which is the church” (Colossians 1:24).
And to the church in Rome, he writes, “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed for us” (Romans 8:18).
But, most importantly, it is the message our Lord Jesus taught to His followers, “…whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me” (Matthew 10:38).
Please know that as long as our Most Merciful and Loving God gives me the gift of breath and life in this world, and if it is in accordance with His will, I will continue to reach out to you through this Apostolate, for I look upon each of you with love and with a spiritual father’s heart. And I pray that my absence from these posts will be just a few short days.
Peace, love and God’s blessings always, †††