home
RSS
My Faith: Why I’m going back to church for Good Friday
Brian Spadora chose son William's middle name: Ignatius, after the saint.
March 28th, 2013
10:00 PM ET

My Faith: Why I’m going back to church for Good Friday

Editor’s note: Brian Spadora lives and writes in New Jersey, where he attends Seton Hall University School of Law. Follow him on Twitter at @brianspadora.

By Brian Spadora, Special to CNN

(CNN) - Like many Catholics my age, I am Catholic in name only. I went to Mass every week as a kid and attended a Jesuit high school and college. My wife and I married in a Catholic church, and both of our children were baptized. But I haven’t been a churchgoer since I became too old for my mother to coerce me into a pew.

I haven’t even made the effort to attend Mass twice a year like “Christmas and Easter Catholics.” For my entire adult life, my Catholic faith has been a sort of cultural vestige, like the Italian, Irish and Slovak ethnic heritage from which I’m generations removed.

Despite this, this month I decided I am returning to the church. This turn of events is not quite as miraculous as the multiplication of loaves and fishes, but it’s pretty surprising. It began, innocently enough, with a half-serious promise to my devout Catholic mother.

When Pope Benedict XVI announced last month that he would step down from the papacy on February 28, I emailed my mother, “If they choose a Jesuit pope, I promise to go to Mass at least once every month.”

My irreligious lifestyle felt safe. There had never been a Jesuit pope, and the oddsmakers didn’t include any Jesuits among their favorites to succeed Pope Benedict. I didn’t give the promise too much thought; it was somewhere between wishful thinking and “when pigs fly.”

Follow the CNN Belief Blog on Twitter

Then, along with the rest of the world, I heard the announcement that Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina became Pope Francis, the 266th pope – and the first Jesuit.

I was in the car when I heard the news, and I literally cheered aloud. While I had long ago left the church behind, my regard for the Jesuit order never wavered.

The elevation of a Jesuit to the papacy is enough to do what years of prodding by my own mother couldn’t.

I owe nearly everything I value in my life to Jesuit education. I entered St. Peter’s Preparatory School in Jersey City, New Jersey, in 1990 as a rambunctious 14-year-old with authority issues. My four years there upended all my conceptions of religion. St. Peter’s, or “the Prep” as we alums call it, taught me how to be an adult, a friend and a Christian. The Jesuits taught me how to love.

During my junior year, a group of friends and I participated in the school’s retreat program. We spent a weekend with faculty retreat leaders in an old house on the Jersey shore, cooking meals together, laughing and praying. We spoke openly about our joys and our pain, as well. We learned that each of us carried within him a burden that could be lightened only by friendship. Our retreat leaders didn’t need to tell us that relieving the burdens of others was the purpose of Christianity. Instead, they lived that example.

Where my previous religious education had prescribed belief, my Jesuit education encouraged thought. Religion was no longer something that stipulated obedience but a practice that demanded action. The Jesuit leadership of the Prep encouraged us students to be, in the words of former Jesuit Superior General Father Pedro Arrupe, “men for others.”

We were fortunate to attend a school like the Prep, and it wasn’t enough to study hard and get good grades. We had an obligation – to ourselves and to God – to serve one another and our communities. The relationships I made during those years remain the strongest in my life, including with my wife, whom I met when we were 17, while she attended the Prep’s sister school.

This teaching was firmly in line with the teachings of St. Ignatius of Loyola, who founded the Society of Jesus, as the Jesuits are formally known, in 1540. St. Ignatius had been a Basque soldier, as well as something of a ladies’ man, until his conversion while convalescing after a cannonball shattered his leg. In his writings, most notably in his “Spiritual Exercises,” St. Ignatius espoused a theology based on loving deeds rather than loving thoughts or words. St. Ignatius calls us not merely to worship Christ but to imitate him.

As a teenager, I naturally fell far short of the standard my Jesuit teachers had called me to, and I continue to fall short as an adult.

I grew alienated from the church due to what I perceive to be inflexibility on issues like contraception, homosexuality and the role of women in the church, but I continued to look to the example of service the Jesuits set through institutions like the Jesuit Refugee Service.

In times of crisis, I’ve turned to contemporary Jesuit writers, particularly Father James Martin. Although I left the church, the Jesuits never left me.

I’ve remained close to the Prep and the Jesuits whose instruction was so valuable to me. When my son, William, was baptized in 2008, the ceremony was held in the Prep’s chapel. The school’s president, Father Robert Reiser, once my teacher and now a treasured friend, was the priest. My closest high school friend, Michael Zakhar, was the godfather. My wife, Tara, and I chose William’s first name together, but she allowed me to choose his middle name: Ignatius.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Now there is no longer the church I left and the Jesuits I embrace but a church led by a Jesuit.

I know the church won’t transform immediately into the type of institution I’d like it to me. It would be unreasonable and selfish for me to expect otherwise.

As a cardinal, Francis expressed conservative views like his opposition to adoptions by homosexuals, a view with which I disagree assiduously. On the other hand, he admonished an audience of Argentinian priests for forgetting the church’s obligations to society’s most vulnerable.

“Jesus teaches us another way,” he said. “Go out. Go out and share your testimony; go out and interact with your brothers; go out and share; go out and ask. Become the Word in body as well as spirit.”

Francis seems intent on refocusing the church toward its duties to serve those in need.

So on Good Friday, I’ll be returning to the church with hope that Francis’ example will inspire me - and Catholics in general - as his fellow Jesuits have always inspired me.

I’m keeping my word to my mother and returning to Mass, where I will pray for the strength to follow the example of St. Ignatius, loving others not in word only but in deed.

The opinions expressed are solely those of Brian Spadora.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Pope Francis

soundoff (652 Responses)
  1. newly Catholic

    Loved the article. This new Pope gives hope where there just didn't feel to be any. Glaciers move faster than the church does, but perhaps, not anymore!

    April 7, 2013 at 1:34 am |
  2. faith

    she's hacking believers' posts. report her

    April 6, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
  3. faith

    "The real Tom
    What I don't get is why it bothers you all so terribly. If you believe, why does it matter what anyone else says? If your belief is so fragile that you're threatened or upset when others ridicule it or ask questions about it, whose fault is that?"

    dorothy, that is a good question for heathen, pagans, devil worshipers, god-haters, you know, people like you

    April 5, 2013 at 10:27 pm |
    • faith

      "IT IS WRITTEN, THOU SHALT HATE ALL BELIEVERS IN GODS THAT ARE NOT ME." II DOROTHY, ch. 5 verse 91

      April 6, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • Science

      As the ark sinks............faith.................here is some normal human behavior.............no god(s) required !

      Soon faith/dorothy ................ethics will beat it up ?

      The Ethics of Resurrecting Extinct Species

      Apr. 8, 2013 — At some point, scientists may be able to bring back extinct animals, and perhaps early humans, raising
      questions of ethics and environmental disruption.

      "Bringing back a hominid raises the question, 'Is it a person?' If we bring back a mammoth or pigeon, there's a very good existing ethical and legal framework for how to treat research animals. We don't have very good ethical considerations of creating and keeping a person in a lab," said Sherkow. "That's a far cry from the type of de-extinction programs going on now, but it highlights the slippery slope problem that ethicists are famous for considering."

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130408165955.htm

      April 10, 2013 at 6:28 am |
  4. CGAW

    Amazing how much this Pope is inspiring people, I hope and pray it continues.

    April 4, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
  5. kevobx

    The forbidden fruit is not an apple! (*Deuteronomy 32:10*) Why did Adam and Eve cover themselves up with fig leaves? A fig is a fruit, the entire world has been deceived by the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. *Matthew 24:32 Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: *Jeremiah 8:20-21 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved. For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me. (*Who are my people *Isaiah 19:25) *John 4:35 for they are white already to harvest. *Daniel 12:10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.

    April 4, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
  6. EX catholic

    Still bowing to and worshiping statues and paintings on the wall?

    April 2, 2013 at 11:09 pm |
    • Peter Beck

      If you were once a Catholic, you know better than to make such a statement.

      April 6, 2013 at 10:40 pm |
    • newly Catholic

      You can't have been Catholic. No one worships statues or art. It's all beautiful art and no one worships any of it.

      April 7, 2013 at 1:36 am |
  7. Andy

    Thank you for your honesty, Mr. Spadora, and may God bless you.

    April 2, 2013 at 10:54 am |
  8. Reality

    Dear Brian,

    The following should save some time in your search of the Truth:

    1. origin: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20E1EFE35540C7A8CDDAA0894DA404482

    “New Torah For Modern Minds

    Abraham, the Jewish patriarch, probably never existed. Nor did Moses. The entire Exodus story as recounted in the Bible probably never occurred. The same is true of the tumbling of the walls of Jericho. And David, far from being the fearless king who built Jerusalem into a mighty capital, was more likely a provincial leader whose reputation was later magnified to provide a rallying point for a fledgling nation.

    Such startling propositions – the product of findings by archaeologists digging in Israel and its environs over the last 25 years – have gained wide acceptance among non-Orthodox rabbis. But there has been no attempt to disseminate these ideas or to discuss them with the laity – until now.

    The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, which represents the 1.5 million Conservative Jews in the United States, has just issued a new Torah and commentary, the first for Conservatives in more than 60 years. Called "Etz Hayim" ("Tree of Life" in Hebrew), it offers an interpretation that incorporates the latest findings from archaeology, philology, anthropology and the study of ancient cultures. To the editors who worked on the book, it represents one of the boldest efforts ever to introduce into the religious mainstream a view of the Bible as a human rather than divine docu-ment. “
    prob•a•bly
    Adverb: Almost certainly; as far as one knows or can tell.

    2. Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Ludemann, Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

    The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.

    earlychristianwritings.com/

    For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

    Current RCC problems:

    Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

    2 b., Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

    Current problems:
    Adulterous preachers, pedophiliac clerics, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

    3. Mohammed was an illiterate, womanizing, lust and greed-driven, warmongering, hallucinating Arab, who also had embellishing/hallucinating/plagiarizing scribal biographers who not only added "angels" and flying chariots to the koran but also a militaristic agenda to support the plundering and looting of the lands of non-believers.

    This agenda continues as shown by the ma-ssacre in Mumbai, the as-sas-sinations of Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh, the conduct of the seven Muslim doctors in the UK, the 9/11 terrorists, the 24/7 Sunni suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the 24/7 Shiite suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the Islamic bombers of the trains in the UK and Spain, the Bali crazies, the Kenya crazies, the Pakistani “koranics”, the Palestine suicide bombers/rocketeers, the Lebanese nutcases, the Taliban nut jobs, the Ft. Hood follower of the koran, and the Filipino “koranics”.

    And who funds this muck and stench of terror? The warmongering, Islamic, Shiite terror and torture theocracy of Iran aka the Third Axis of Evil and also the Sunni "Wannabees" of Saudi Arabia.

    Current crises:

    The Sunni-Shiite blood feud and the warmongering, womanizing (11 wives), hallucinating founder.

    4. Hinduism (from an online Hindu site) – "Hinduism cannot be described as an organized religion. It is not founded by any individual. Hinduism is God centered and therefore one can call Hinduism as founded by God, because the answer to the question ‘Who is behind the eternal principles and who makes them work?’ will have to be ‘Cosmic power, Divine power, God’."

    The caste/laborer system, reincarnation and cow worship/reverence are problems when saying a fair and rational God founded Hinduism."

    Current problems:

    The caste system, reincarnation and cow worship/reverence.

    5. Buddhism- "Buddhism began in India about 500 years before the birth of Christ. The people living at that time had become disillusioned with certain beliefs of Hinduism including the caste system, which had grown extremely complex. The number of outcasts (those who did not belong to any particular caste) was continuing to grow."

    "However, in Buddhism, like so many other religions, fanciful stories arose concerning events in the life of the founder, Siddhartha Gautama (fifth century B.C.):"

    Archaeological discoveries have proved, beyond a doubt, his historical character, but apart from the legends we know very little about the circu-mstances of his life. e.g. Buddha by one legend was supposedly talking when he came out of his mother's womb.

    Bottom line: There are many good ways of living but be aware of the hallucinations, embellishments, lies, and myths surrounding the founders and foundations of said rules of life.

    Then, apply the Five F rule: "First Find the Flaws, then Fix the Foundations". And finally there will be religious peace and religious awareness in the world!!!!!

    April 2, 2013 at 8:24 am |
    • CGAW

      too long, too boring and too unrealistic for a reader to beleive you know the truth

      April 4, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
    • biggles

      LOL

      April 7, 2013 at 1:44 am |
    • biggles

      What a total idiot

      April 7, 2013 at 1:45 am |
    • SEACAM

      You know who is very real and thinks just like you...Stalin. There is an excellent example of how reality can really hurt.

      April 14, 2013 at 6:07 pm |
  9. Anon

    More like cognitive dissonance in order to continue propagating primitive desert myths.

    April 1, 2013 at 11:28 pm |
  10. Jack Kelly

    A beautiful expression. Very well said. Thank you.

    March 31, 2013 at 11:09 am |
    • brianspadora

      Thanks so much for the kind words, Mr. Kelly!

      March 31, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
  11. In celebration of the resurrection of Christ

    Thank you Jesus !

    March 31, 2013 at 6:37 am |
  12. rgc

    Hope you had a blessed Good Friday and that somehow God made Himself more known to you. Faith is about a relationship with God. You might not hear that from too many Catholics but this is the essence of what it means to believe. Faith in Christ is getting to know Him intimately, not solely in an intellectual way, but also in your heart. Read one of the Gospels and rediscover Jesus in them, pray with them. Go before the Blessed Sacrament and just spend some time there in silence. The world can drown out God's voice. Once we quiet ourselves, we can look at where God is meeting us. Remember the Examen? I would also recommend doing the Exercises. They will change your life. Peace in your journey.

    March 31, 2013 at 1:31 am |
    • brianspadora

      Thanks very much for your comment. I agree that this is a personal journey. I plan to look into the Exercises. Thank you again.

      March 31, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
  13. hipspad

    Hi Brian – I'll be praying for you and your family. You've had the humility to listen to the Holy Spirit in this decision and that of course if all that matters. God will lead you where He wants you to be. Keep listening and trusting!!

    March 30, 2013 at 8:58 pm |
    • brianspadora

      Thanks very much for the kind words! Best wishes to you, as well.

      March 31, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
  14. JCleary

    Brian......thanks for sharing. I too am the product of 8 years of Jesuit education. It is very apparent that while you had given up(or though you gave up) on the Church, God had not given up on you.
    For a treat read the Pope's homilies... Even in translation they are clear, brief,focused and powerful...laser beams not buckshot as my Jesuit mentor would say. Easter blessings to you and your family.

    March 30, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • brianspadora

      Thanks very much for the comment and for the suggestion. I will be sure to read Francis' homilies. I just came across a translation of his Easter Vigil homily. Looking forward to reading it!

      March 30, 2013 at 7:44 pm |
  15. Juan Diego

    I'm as appalled by some of the disrespectful comments as I'm inspired by your sharing. Thanks, Brian, for putting your heart out there and inspiring me. I was a lapsed Catholic once too and a Jesuit old boy, and your piece spoke to me a lot. Prayers for you, and may many more come back through the leadership of Pope France the Humble. AMDG

    March 30, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
    • brianspadora

      Thanks so much for the kind words. I was surprised by the volume of negative comments, but I am not bothered by them, since they don't have much at all to do with the substance of what I wrote. They seem to express a general antipathy toward organized religion, while my piece was a somewhat secular take on religious practice. I am pleased that some people found it helpful. I am grateful for your kind words, and I wish you all the best.

      March 30, 2013 at 7:46 pm |
  16. Raymond

    But you do understand that you are not a Catholic. Being a Catholic entails living a Catholic life. you do not. Start with going to Mass each Sunday and the fact that you said that you would return to the church if there was a Jesuit Pope makes you sound like a fool. I do not and would not pretend to be a Catholic, I have it up when I was 21. but I dare say that you learned vry much from the likes of the Jesuits and saying you did is absolute nonsense.

    March 30, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
    • brianspadora

      Raymond, did you read even the first sentence of the piece? I said I am a Catholic in name only. The entire point of the piece was that I am seeking the aspects of Catholicism that I hope will help me become a kinder, more empathetic person. My goal isn't to be a Catholic according the most dogmatic or doctrinal definition of the term. My goal is to be a fulfilled, kind person. If going to Mass once a year rather than each week helps me with that, then I am satisfied. I am not worried about the fate of my soul. I am worried about being a good person in the here and now. I hope you find happiness, as well.

      March 30, 2013 at 7:50 pm |
  17. EX Catholic

    This is like; who cares? The RCC is an Idolatrous system is NOT religion. You are still nothing more than an IDOLATER.

    March 30, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
    • Atheist, me?

      So if you might tell me Ex Catholic, what church do you attend now!

      March 30, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
    • Raymond

      Sir you sound like a hate monger to say this. I was brought up all around the Catholic Church and they taught me very well.. I gave it up all religion but I am glad I had the church during my formative years and it gave much help and assistance to many people in my locality when I was younger. Sir Leave the Catholic Church alone and try to live a good life.

      March 30, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
    • EX Catholic

      IDOLATRY IS NOT RELIGION, IDOLATRY is an aberrant, abhorrent, grave and Very Serious SIN period.

      March 31, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
  18. Chad

    William sure looks like a keeper! 🙂

    March 30, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
  19. Peter. The theory of uniformitarianism

    Peter. The theory of uniformitarianism 2 Peter 3
    3Above all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. 4They will say, “Where is this ‘coming’ he promised? Ever since our ancestors died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation.” 5But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water. 6By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. 7By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.

    Feast of Unleavened Bread

    Israel was a slave in Egypt. God delivered through power and spokesman Moses the ten plagues, after warnings to release Israel . The tenth plague , the death of the first born, was on a night that Israel had taken unblemished lamb sacrifice, and the put blood on the doorpost. At midnight the blood set Israel apart in Egypt, so the spirit passed over these homes . There was chaos at night and Israel was ready for the escape through the prophetic power and deliverance.

    After they came up out of Egypt into the desert, God ordained the festival calender that has stood to this day.
    Unleavened bread festival, Nisan 15, symbolized the "raising up out of bondage from Egypt".

    The Passover and the Festival of Unleavened Bread

    4“ ‘These are the Lord’s appointed festivals, the sacred assemblies you are to proclaim at their appointed times: 5The Lord’s Passover begins at twilight on the fourteenth day of the first month. 6On the fifteenth day of that month the Lord’s Festival of Unleavened Bread begins; for seven days you must eat bread made without yeast. 7On the first day hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work. 8For seven days present a food offering to the Lord. And on the seventh day hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work.’ ”

    Offering the Firstfruits

    9The Lord said to Moses, 10“Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘When you enter the land I am going to give you and you reap its harvest, bring to the priest a sheaf of the first grain you harvest. 11He is to wave the sheaf before the Lord so it will be accepted on your behalf; the priest is to wave it on the day after the Sabbath. 12On the day you wave the sheaf, you must sacrifice as a burnt offering to the Lord a lamb a year old without defect, 13together with its grain offering of two-tenths of an ephaha of the finest flour mixed with olive oil—a food offering presented to the Lord, a pleasing aroma—and its drink offering of a quarter of a hinb of wine. 14You must not eat any bread, or roasted or new grain, until the very day you bring this offering to your God. This is to be a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, wherever you live.

    The Festival of Weeks

    15“ ‘From the day after the Sabbath, the day you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, count off seven full weeks. 16Count off fifty days up to the day after the seventh Sabbath, and then present an offering of new grain to the Lord. 17From wherever you live, bring two loaves made of two-tenths of an ephah of the finest flour, baked with yeast, as a wave offering of firstfruits to the Lord. 18Present with this bread seven male lambs, each a year old and without defect, one young bull and two rams. They will be a burnt offering to the Lord, together with their grain offerings and drink offerings—a food offering, an aroma pleasing to the Lord. 19Then sacrifice one male goat for a sin offeringc and two lambs, each a year old, for a fellowship offering. 20The priest is to wave the two lambs before the Lord as a wave offering, together with the bread of the firstfruits. They are a sacred offering to the Lord for the priest. 21On that same day you are to proclaim a sacred assembly and do no regular work. This is to be a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, wherever you live.

    This all is a foreshadow of who Christ was, day for day, festival for festival. God is supernatural and all powerful. He is risen.

    700 BC Prophecy
    Isaiah 53 >>
    New International Version
    1Who has believed our message
    and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
    2He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
    and like a root out of dry ground.
    He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
    nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
    3He was despised and rejected by mankind,
    a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
    Like one from whom people hide their faces
    he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.
    4Surely he took up our pain
    and bore our suffering,
    yet we considered him punished by God,
    stricken by him, and afflicted.
    5But he was pierced for our transgressions,
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
    the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
    and by his wounds we are healed.
    6We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
    each of us has turned to our own way;
    and the Lord has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.
    7He was oppressed and afflicted,
    yet he did not open his mouth;
    he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
    and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
    so he did not open his mouth.
    8By oppressiona and judgment he was taken away.
    Yet who of his generation protested?
    For he was cut off from the land of the living;
    for the transgression of my people he was punished.b
    9He was assigned a grave with the wicked,
    and with the rich in his death,
    though he had done no violence,
    nor was any deceit in his mouth.
    10Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
    and though the Lord makesc his life an offering for sin,
    he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
    and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.
    11After he has suffered,
    he will see the light of lifed and be satisfiede ;
    by his knowledgef my righteous servant will justify many,
    and he will bear their iniquities.
    12Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,g
    and he will divide the spoils with the strong,h
    because he poured out his life unto death,
    and was numbered with the transgressors.
    For he bore the sin of many,
    and made intercession for the transgressors.

    March 30, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  20. Gerry Drummond

    Brian, Heartwarming piece. You're in the zone. I see you making 75% of your next 7000 three-pointers. (You have a long life ahead of you.) Two weeks ago, my public sector union local(I'm the president) sent $500 to Wounded Warrior Project in Honor of US Army Ordnance Removal Specialist Scott Ganz, who killed himself not long after returning from Afghanistan. Then we voted to invite Pope Francis to visit our county-run nursing home, juvenile detention center and animal shelter worked by our white and blue collar members . . . and more if he has time. Next is finding a way to write him asap.

    March 30, 2013 at 10:52 am |
    • brianspadora

      Thanks so much for the message. I wish you the best on the vital work you're doing. It's exactly the kind of loving-others-in-deed that I aspire to do.

      March 30, 2013 at 11:31 am |
    • Atheist, me?

      Excellent thought and deed! May God help you in all your endeavours to show charitable love and compassion!

      March 30, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Advertisement
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.