Mysteries of Righteous Anger

News: Commentary
by Fr. Paul John Kalchik  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  July 12, 2022   

Confronting evil properly

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Father James Altman spoke at the recent conference held by the Coalition for Canceled Priests in Beloit, Wisconsin. During Fr. Altman's moving presentation titled "Lord, Teach Us to Pray," he suggested a new set of "mysteries" for the Rosary for our trying times.

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Fr. Altman

These he titled "Mysteries of Our Lord's Righteous Anger." These mysteries, based upon the Gospels, lead those praying to reflect upon how Our Lord dealt forthrightly with the injustices and evil He encountered during His public ministry. Our Lord, in a holy and righteous way, directly confronted evil and all perpetrators thereof. He never equivocated.

Jesus did not step back from the bad characters He met as He proclaimed the Kingdom of God, nor did He grant them concessions. Jesus did not engage in fraternal dialogue or "listening sessions" with those possessed by evil spirits or living lives of sin.

Anger is neither good nor bad but, like all strong emotions, needs to be harnessed.

During His three years of publicly proclaiming the Kingdom, Our Lord exorcised all those He encountered who were possessed by evil spirits and set them free from Satan's domination.

And even more phenomenal than this, Our Lord did not fail to use force when necessary against those profaning what was holy. Recall that when Christ cleansed the Temple, He used a whip!

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Father Altman's Mysteries of Our Lord's Righteous Anger revisit these kinds of gospel stories for the faithful, encouraging them to fight back righteously against the many injustices in our world and in our Church. The aim of these new mysteries is that, as the faithful meditate upon them and recite the Our Fathers and Hail Marys, God the Holy Spirit bestows upon them the gift of courage and inspiration to first restore themselves and then the Church at large.

Anger, as an emotion, is neither good nor bad but, like all strong emotions, needs to be harnessed. These prayerful reflections upon how Our Lord dealt with the injustices and evil He encountered while He walked this earth are a sure aid for the faithful to harness their anger and to place it at the service of God the Holy Spirit.

The Condemnation of the Sinful Cities 

"Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would long ago have repented in sackcloth and ashes. ... But I tell you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom on the Day of Judgment than for you" (Matthew 11:21–24).

As we recite the Our Father and the Hail Marys of this decade, we reflect upon how in ages past, God judged nations and cities for their wickedness. Nations and people that rejected God, His laws and His decrees have all brought doom upon themselves. God will not be mocked. We ponder how we in our own lives have not followed God's most holy commandments and in so doing have brought God's condemnation down upon our own heads.

One Our Father.

Ten Hail Marys.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

The Great Millstone

"It would be better for him if a millstone were put around his neck and he be thrown into the sea than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin" (Luke 17:2).

As we recite the Our Father and the Hail Marys of this decade, we ponder how those who lead others in their charge to sin will be judged harshly by Our Lord on Judgment Day. As the Gospels vividly portray, Our Lord had the harshest criticism for the bad shepherds of his day, who, by their actions, were leading Israel away from God. As we ponder this mystery, we ask God for the grace to always protect those little ones we are given the responsibility to care for: May we lead them to Christ.

One Our Father.

Ten Hail Marys.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

The Cleansing of the Temple and Just Condemnation of All Those Who Profane What Is Sacred

"He made a whip out of cords and drove them all out of the Temple area, with the sheep and oxen, and spilled the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables, and to those who sold doves He said, 'Take these out of here, and stop making My Father's house a marketplace'" (John 2:15–16).

As we recite the Our Father and the Hail Marys of this decade, we ask forgiveness for those times we have profaned or desecrated what is sacred. The times we have unworthily received the blessed sacrament, or encouraged others to do so. The times when in God's most holy presence in his Church, we have acted with indifference, or disdain, and not given Our Lord the respect that is his due present in the Tabernacle in his church. We also repent of those instances when we have not duly condemned those with whom we have contact, who entertain errant beliefs in astrology, or idols, that make a mockery of God and the First Commandment.

One Our Father.

Ten Hail Marys.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

A Barren Fig Tree Is Cursed 

"Seeing a fig tree by the road, He went over to it, but found nothing on it except leaves. And He said to it, 'No fruit ever come from you again.' And immediately, the fig tree withered" (Matthew 21:19).

As we recite the Our Father and the Hail Marys of this decade, we ponder how everything and everyone God created has a purpose and role to fulfill. If our role, stemming from our creation in the image and likeness of God Himself, is rejected, left unfulfilled during our lifetimes, we run the risk of being forsaken by God in the next. God did not make us to serve no purpose or to use our existence vainly. We pray for the grace to be fruitful as sons and daughters of God. 

One Our Father.

Ten Hail Marys.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

The Condemnation of False Religious Leaders 

"Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You lock the Kingdom of Heaven before human beings. You do not enter yourselves, nor do you allow entrance to those trying to enter" (Matthew 23:13).

As we recite the Our Father and the Hail Marys of this decade, we ponder how misguided religious leaders, and we ourselves at times, have preached false gospels to others; ones that promote false ideologies or false messiahs, as compared to Our Lord's gospel. We pray for the grace to always be steadfast to the authentic gospel of Our Lord and to the Church He founded.

One Our Father.

Ten Hail Marys.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

The Rosary of Righteous Anger of Our Lord is finished by saying a Salve Regina, St. Michael's Prayer and a Glory Be.

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 St. Michael

Father Altman added the St. Michael's prayer to the end of this devotion to remind the faithful to implore St. Michael's help when they are confronting evil in any form, especially when some awful event is playing out that evokes, on their part, strong emotions of anger. All of us have had experiences in which we have been wronged and, in our anger, lost control of ourselves. A word of advice — just taking a few seconds to recite the St. Michael Prayer when someone wrongs you makes all the difference in your day-to-day life to keep justified anger from morphing into sinful rage.

So please give these new Mysteries of Our Lord's Righteous Anger a try. Our evil times require all of us to confront evil. These prayerful reflections upon how Our Lord confronted evil during His active ministry will give solace and courage to those who pray them.

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