Reflections from the Emergency Room – September 27 2017

Last night was rough. Called my cardiologist after spending too much time unconscious for us to take. “Go to the emergency room. We are going to admit you.”

UAB Birmingham – down town. Enter into the ER though a metal detector and police guard. About fifty poor souls packed the place. Profound poverty and bondage to drugs and sin. The area was filthy. Stephanie whispers in a sorrowful tone, “Please don’t pass out here.” I would have been on that floor, face down unconscious.

The poverty. Deeply sad for them. Baffled at a leftist socialist inspired system that keeps them all in bondage while claiming to care for them. The suffering is so great and the system is so profoundly evil.

I can understand why so many foolish but well intended Catholics embraced liberation theology. The problem is that when you try to implement enlightened social systems through the hands of the unregenerate, the power shifts, corrupts and then oppresses again. The only true hope for real change is through a mass revival and the restoration of the Church to its proper place in spreading the gospel through the liturgy and care for the poor.

The system oppresses, and then neatly hides the face of need from those who have the means to mitigate the need. They become numbers and political pawns. Deeply saddened. Surrounded by darkness.

Out of the darkness into the gray. Into triage. Into a room. Safe. Fr. Jerabek arrives just in time. Confession. Anointing of the sick. Love from a very good holy and faithful priest. So blessed.

Screaming in the hall. Drugs. Desperation. A place to stay. A fake illness to get admitted so he doesn’t have to sleep in the bushes or be assaulted in the night.

Coughing so hard – pass out again – safe on a bed. Completely exhausted. Morphine. Emotion. I hate that Stephanie has to watch her beloved lose consciousness over and over again. Cough pass out. Wake up – offer it up for RAZ and the seminarians and the requests of the beautiful ones of Apostoli Viae and the anawim in Puerto Rico.

Phone call from another beautiful priest – Fr. Chris Clay. Prayers over the phone and encouragement. So blessed.

My son and his wife arrive. What a gift to see them – it has been too long. They are happy. Coughing pass out. Seeing the tears in my son’s eyes with the morphine in my blood, tears flow. I am tired and really beat up. Sick of this. Offer it up for RAZ and her little one and for the seminarians.

We laugh and cry and share memories for hours.

My son prays lays hands on me with Stephanie and Julianne his wife. Through tears begs the Lord to help me. Past 1:00 AM and he needs to go. Deeply blessed by his faithfulness and care and his new career outside of law enforcement. He only needs to survive two more weeks.

Sleep a few hours. Wake up strengthened. Blessed by a remarkable wife and her devotion. Things I am grateful for:

  • Hope is never disappointed when it is placed in my blessed Jesus and our Most Holy and Merciful Trinity.
  • My wife – a truly extraordinary woman.
  • The ability to suffer and offer it up for so many. My offerings are a pittance but through God’s grace they are magnified and poured out in abundance on His beloved people.
  • EWTN – health coverage. The best health plan. So generous.
  • The best medical care in the world at UAB.
  • The generous care of our friend Deacon Neal Kay – retired cardiologist.
  • The prayers and comforting words of so many priests and religious.
  • The prayers and comforting words of my Apostoli Viae family.
  • The prayers and support from the National Catholic Register team – remarkable people.
  • Starbucks coffee and prayer in the hospital room.
  • The competence and dedication of the people in the organizations I am responsible for and how well things are going in all cases.
  • A remarkably kind hospital staff – especially considering the clientele they handle and how embittered they could be if they let it affect them.

I am blessed.

Coughing episodes twice. No passing out. Praise God. Offering up the suffering again. More medical treatment to come. Please Lord help the docs to come to clarity and a treatment plan that works.

Peace.

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14 thoughts on “Reflections from the Emergency Room – September 27 2017”

  1. Dan, I am transported by your words to the ER and hospital ( and wish I could be there). Your words are so impactful and give me much to ponder. I know that God has this under control and a reason for your suffering, but I pray He will lesson your trial so you can resume your many works. I love Stephanie and you as wiser, younger siblings in Christ, and have been so blessed by my association with AV and the beautiful souls it has attracted! I am in awe that you write so beautifully from a hospital bed! You may have taken Yalile’s gold star for faithfulness.😉 You are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  2. Praise the name of Jesus. He’s my rock, he’s my fortress, he’s my deliver, In Him will I trust, Praise the name of Jesus.

    Prayers of deliverance from the medical issues you are experiencing Dan. May Our Lord restore you to good health, knowing you are a warrior for Him. You teach us much about suffering and offering it up in Union with what our Lord suffered for us that we may have eternal salvation. When we walk through painful times we need to find that quiet place with the Lord. I pray you hear Him say, I am here for you good and faithful servant. Praying a Seven Sorrows rosary for you and Stephanie as yet again you offer up your suffering.

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    1. Praying for you Dan and for Stephanie. Thank you for your example in the midst of suffering. I know there is no safer place than in the Hands of God. God has a purpose for everything. I said this somewhere else but maybe you and your family’s presence there is going to touch some nurse or patient. Maybe your joy and patience in suffering will affect someone. All I know is God is with you and He has a purpose. May God give wisdom to your doctors and may effective treatment restore you to health.

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  3. Dear Dan, you are such a holy inspiration to all of us. Again, writing this reflection from your hospital bed, God is using you, as His messenger, to impart His wisdom about suffering, to so many whose lives and hearts you have touched. As I told you yesterday, I am offering my suffering for you, and yes, the seminarians. May God’s peace be with you, and may He inspire the doctors to find out what is causing all of this.

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  4. Dear Dan, my brother in Christ, know that I have tucked you inside my Divine Mercy Chaplets last night and in my rosary and Divine Mercy Chaplets this morning.

    Thank you for modeling your gratefulness to God and others through this trial and your willingness to accept all sufferings and to offer them up so graciously for others.

    I heard something today that a priest said: He came to realize that it only matters what Jesus thinks of us and that the Holy Trinity, Mother Mary, the angels and saints are the reality and that we live in the shadows.

    But these shadows are full of trials and tribulations but also joy, peace and happiness too. Jesus knows exactly what we need at the precise moment in our lives. It all helps to sanctify us. He measures all this according to our needs and according to His Will for us. You are showing us an example of imitating Jesus in His sufferings right now and it has left a great impression on me. Thank you.

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  5. I hope everything will turn out good for you and your family. I will be praying for you. Your going to have to chuck this in your humility hamper lol, but its been about a year now since I have been following you on spiritualdirection.com and Divine Intimacy radio. You and Connie Rossini have had such an impact in my life and lives of many others. Thank you so much for being who you are, and for saying yes to God. I often reflect on St. Faustina and the difficulty she faced, and how her yes to God, has also impacted my life.

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  6. Your gratitude amidst such suffering is really beautiful and inspiring. Stephanie’s faith-filled perseverance is too! The gifts of Apostoli Viae are really just too numerous to count.

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