Thursday, September 18, 2014
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
There is a devout Catholic lady and good friend that bristles at the following: Priests, family and friends who comfort the grieving family by telling them everything is alright, that their loved one is in heaven....or that their loved one is smiling at them from heaven.
The truth is only God knows who in fact goes directly to heaven after their immediate death. We should therefore go on the assumption that our loved one is in Purgatory and help them get them to heaven as soon as possible. More on how to help the holy souls in future posts.
It is our Christian duty and obligation to pray for all the holy souls in Purgatory. It is not sufficient for us to pray for our dearly departed family and friends. This is essential since as mentioned above, we have no idea who is in Purgatory and who isn't. We are also all brothers (and sisters) in Christ and Jesus commanded us to love our neighbor as ourselves. But we do know that all the holy souls in Purgatory are in need of our assistance as they can no longer help themselves. Just think about those holy souls who have no one to remember them in pray, let alone have masses said for them to shorten their time in Purgatory.
There are and have been rare circumstances where God reveals to certain holy people, souls who are in Purgatory and needing help. But again, this is rare. The rest of us have to pray for the repose of the souls whether the world deems them as great sinners or very virtuous. An example is given in the book Purgatory that even saintly Monica asked that she be remembered at the altar of the Lord and her likewise saintly son, Augustine was not content to pray for the repose of his mother, but he asked that his readers not to cease recommending her soul to Divine Mercy.
It is very tempting to judge those we think should be in heaven and those we think belong in hell. However, until the very last instant of our life, God, Divine Mercy Himself, can save us and wants very much to save us. We may not necessarily agree with His decisions on where the soul will go, and for that I am grateful that He makes such decisions and not the rest of us.
They say we will be very surprised who we find in heaven. Let this be a lesson for us to lead an exemplary life so no one will be surprised if and when they find us in heaven.
Faith teaches us that all men dying in the state of mortal sin incur eternal damnation; but who are those that in reality die in that state? God alone, who reserves to Himself the judgment of the living and the dead, knows this. As to ourselves, we can but draw a conjectural conclusion from exterior circumstances, and from [even] this we must refrain. It must, however, be confessed that there is everything to be feared for those who die, unprepared for death, and all hope seems to vanish for those who refuse to receive the Sacraments.St. Francis de Sales has forbidden us to judge evil of those who have led a bad life. "With the exception of those sinners whose reprobation is made manifest by Holy Scripture, we may not, conclude that a person is damned, but must respect the secret of God." This holy and wise saint taught that as "first grace is gratuitous, so also is the last, which is final perseverance or a good death..."
Purgatory Explained by the Lives and Legends of the Saints, Fr. F.X. Schoppes, Tan Books
Monday, September 15, 2014
The following are things I would also like to point out:
#6. It is also never appropriate to wear low cut or revealing clothing no matter how fashionable it is.
#11. Before Mass and after Mass is a time that we should observe holy silence. But after receiving holy communion should also be a time for sacred silence. This silence is broken by having to sing a hymn. It makes it difficult to give thanks to God when you cannot hear yourself think.
#16. Remember that Jesus is truly present in the consecrated hosts and His precious blood is in the chalice. Bow down when passing by any other Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion holding a chalice or ciborium during Holy Communion.
Friday, September 12, 2014
An article worth reading today: Catholic Culture's Most Holy Name of Mary: What's In a Name?
The following Litany of the Holy Name of Mary is also from Catholic Culture.
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
Son of Mary, hear us.
Son of Mary, graciously hear us.
Eternal Word, of Whom Mary is the Mother, have mercy on us.
Holy Spirit, of Whom Mary is the spouse, have mercy on us.
Divine Trinity, of Whom Mary is the Handmaid, have mercy on us.
Mary, daughter of the Light Eternal, pray for us
Mary, our light, pray for us
Mary, our sister, pray for us
Mary, flower of Jesse, pray for us
Mary, issue of kings, pray for us
Mary, chief work of God, pray for us
Mary, the beloved of God, pray for us
Mary, Immaculate Virgin, pray for us
Mary, all fair, pray for us
Mary, light in darkness, pray for us
Mary, our sure rest, pray for us
Mary, house of God, pray for us
Mary, sanctuary of the Lord, pray for us
Mary, altar of the Divinity, pray for us
Mary, Virgin Mother, pray for us
Mary, embracing your Infant God, pray for us
Mary, reposing with Eternal Wisdom, pray for us
Mary, ocean of bitterness, pray for us
Mary, Star of the Sea, pray for us
Mary, suffering with your only Son, pray for us
Mary, pierced with a sword of sorrow, pray for us
Mary, torn with a cruel wound, pray for us
Mary, sorrowful even unto death, pray for us
Mary, bereft of all consolation, pray for us
Mary, submissive to the law of God, pray for us
Mary, standing by the Cross of Jesus, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady, pray for us
Mary, Our Queen, pray for us
Mary, Queen of glory, pray for us
Mary glory of the Church Triumphant, pray for us
Mary, Blessed Queen, pray for us
Mary, advocate of the Church Militant, pray for us
Mary, Queen of Mercy, pray for us
Mary, consoler of the Church Suffering, pray for us
Mary, exalted above the angels,
Mary, crowned with twelve stars, pray for us
Mary, fair as the moon, pray for us
Mary, bright as the sun, pray for us
Mary, distinguished above all, pray for us
Mary, seated at the right hand of Jesus, pray for us
Mary, our hope, pray for us
Mary, our sweetness, pray for us
Mary, glory of Jerusalem, pray for us
Mary, joy of Israel, pray for us
Mary, honor of our people, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of the Assumption, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Loreto, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Czestochowa, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of the Angels, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Dolors, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Mercy, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Victory, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of La Trappe, pray for us
Mary, Our Lady of Divine Providence, pray for us
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord Jesus.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us, O Lord Jesus.
Son of Mary, graciously hear us.
I will praise you in the assembly of the faithful.
O Almighty God, Who beholds Thy servants earnestly desiring to place themselves under the shadow of the name and protection of the Most Holy Virgin Mary, grant, we beseech You, that by her charitable intercession, we may be delivered from all evil on earth, and may arrive at everlasting joys in Heaven, through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
|Saint Nicholas of Tolentino Reviving a Child by Garafalo c. 1530|
For her [the Church Suffering], he frequently fasted on bread and water, inflicted cruel disciplines upon himself, and wore about his loins a chain of sharp-pointed iron. When the sanctuary was thrown open to him, and his superiors wished to confer the priesthood upon him, he hesitated a long time before that sublime dignity, and nothing could make him decide to receive holy orders but the though that by daily celebrating the Holy Sacrifice he could most efficaciously assist the suffering souls in Purgatory. On their part, the souls whom he relieved by so many suffrages appeared to him several times to thank him or to recommend themselves to his charity..."In honor of his feast day, let us imitate St. Nicholas of Tolentino by remembering the holy souls who may have no one to pray for them relief or release.
Thursday, September 04, 2014
Wednesday, September 03, 2014
Tuesday, September 02, 2014
Father Gabriele Amorth is the chief exorcist in Rome knows about evil.
I am reading his book An Exorcist tells his Story and was struck what he has to say in the very beginning concerning hell.
First he makes it abundantly clear that: evil, suffering, death and hell (eternal damnation in everlasting torment) are not acts of God.
An illustration to this is a story about another well-known exorcist who was expelling a demon. The exorcist sarcastically told the demon "Get out of here. The Lord has already prepared a nice, well-heated house for you!" The demon responded as follows: "You do not know anything! It wasn't he [God] who made hell. It was us. He had not even thought about it..."
On pondering this it is not too difficult to believe because how could God, who is love, have created such an evil place, full of torment and despair. Hell could have only come from Satan and his minions.
Father Amorth goes on to clarify predestination with God's providence, which causes confusion with some.
He writes that when he is told that: "God already knows who will be saved and who will be damned, and therefore anything we do is useless, I usually answer with four truths that the Bible spells out for us:
God wants that everyone be saved; no one is predestined to go to hell; Jesus died for everyone; and everyone is given sufficient graces for salvation.
God is not only love but He is divine mercy. Let us not forget that.
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Saturday, August 23, 2014
There is a good explanation on what holy indifference is by Father Broom. Basically, it "means a total openness to the will of God in one’s life."
The exercise of holy indifference in our daily life will not only make us more patient, joyful, less stressed but ultimately, we will become a saint. So the next time we are hot, let us be content and abstain from turning on the air conditioner or sitting next to the fan. The next time our spouse is snippy, let us keep silent. If we didn't do anything to provoke him or her, we have nothing to defend. However, it may be more difficult to remember holy indifference when bad things happen such as losing our job, the death of a loved one, betrayal of a friend, but maybe, the more we practice it, the better prepared we will be when these trials and tribulations come our way. Maybe for the love of God, we will really leave it to him and be content.