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  • Writer's pictureProfiles in Catholicism

33 Days to Greater Glory

Updated: Jul 6, 2021

33 Days to Greater Glory by Michael E. Gaitley

Reviewed by Eileen Quinn Knight, Ph.D.

Father Gaitley, a Marian Missionary, wrote this meditation during turmoil in the Church. It was the beginning of the clergy sex abuse scandal that rocked the Archdiocese and then the whole Church. There were over 700 stories in the Boston Globe in one year. As a seminarian, Father Gaitley rationalized that this was old news but knew deep inside that there were no excuses. He knew that the Catholic Church should be held to a higher standard as we’ve been entrusted with more. All were witnesses to the reality of an unthinkable tragedy and a betrayal of outrageous proportions. Cardinal Law of Boston was a big part of the problem as he repeatedly oversaw the transfer of those sick men to various parishes where they continued their predatory practices on countless children. Father Gaitley published a book in response to the sex abuse scandal Consoling the Heart of Jesus. The author had a deep sense of the Lord’s sorrow and how the scandal was breaking His heart.

Father Gaitley began writing this book based on the Gospel of John. He gives us the way to use this book. First, listen to the Gospel of John as this book is a 33 day preparation for consecration. In this book though, it’s the fullness of consecration that unites us to the perfect consecration of Jesus as he offers himself, in the Spirit, to the Father for the life of the world. This consecration is to be set apart from the world during the 33 days of preparation. The author encourages the reader to limit the distractions and devices as much as possible. Ponder the readings for each day. It is a 33 day do-it-yourself retreat in preparation for consecration that is based on heart-pondering prayer. This consecration is about a more fully conscious and active participation in the Mass. The reader can start the retreat at any time and a Sunday Mass won’t be far off to make the consecration at Mass as you finish the retreat. The reader needs to know the structure of the week: opening characters, the seven signs, the upper room and greater glory. This is followed up by the consecration to St. Joseph because the book is essentially a consecration to the Father, after you’ve completed it, you may find it helpful to get to know the Father better by making a consecration to St. Joseph who is a kind of image of God our Father.

So in the midst of the present time and turmoil, lets bring to the world greater mercy and greater glory in the greatest of the Gospels Let’s get back to the original source, the Word of God, and let it set us free from our hypocrisy so we might become authentic witnesses of Christ and the beauty of the Church. Let’s learn from the apostle who rested his head on the Head of Jesus and there discovered the deepest mysteries of the Father’s love. This book is great to give as a gift also.

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