Saturday, May 30, 2009

Catholics Beware of "Nice Guys"

Many of you may be familiar with Bob and Penny Lord who have taught us so much about the saints on EWTN What you may not know is that they have a blog. I found the following post on their blog.
Arius was a nice guy. He was a heretic of the Fourth century. He was a charmer. He had the ability to twist the truth in many ways. He was well versed in music. One of his means of deceiving people was to take the popular tunes of the day and write words which espoused his heresies. The big heresy he tried to promote with his lyrics was that Jesus was not Divine. He twisted some Scripture passages to bring his point home, such as Jesus not knowing when He would return (Matthew 24:36.) Arius insisted, if He was God, He had to know everything. Therefore, He could not be God. Also the fact that Jesus died, God could not die. Therefore, Jesus was not Divine. Arius taught that Jesus was created, God’s first act of creation, but He was not God. Arius claimed Jesus was special; He was just not Divine. This goes against everything we have believed in from the beginning of the Church...

You can read the rest at Beward of Nice Guys

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On Universal Contrition

Confession by Weyden

...Contrition is not genuine unless every mortal sin be detested.

It is impossible for some mortal sins to be forgiven and others to remain unforgiven.

ALL are pardoned or NONE is pardoned.

It is impossible for light and darkness to be in one and the same place.

Hence, Sanctifying Grace and mortal sin cannot dwell together.

If there be grace in the soul, there can be no mortal sin; and if there be mortal sin, there can be no grace for mortal sin expels all grace.

If Sanctifying Grace abides in the soul, the soul has a claim to Heaven.

If the soul is in the state of mortal sin, it is headed for Hell.

The sinner must therefore necessarily be sincerely sorry for all mortal sins if he wishes to be reconciled with God, for it is impossible to have a claim on both Heaven and Hell simultaneously; it is impossible to be a friend and an enemy of God at one and the same time.

In his epistle, St. James the Apostle states the principle thus: "Whosoever shall keep the whole law, but offend in one point, is guilty of all." (James 2:10).

One single moral sin retains the soul in the devil's power. And since no mortal sin is forgiven without sorrow, contrition must extend to all moral sins.

This, of course, does not mean one must make a special act of contrition for each individual mortal sin. It is sufficient that the act of contrition embrace all the mortal sins committed...

Excerpt from Confession: Its Fruitful Practice, Tan Books and Publishers

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Thursday, May 28, 2009

A Holy Hour Reflection - Vocations to the Priesthood or Religious Life

St. John Vianney

JESUS: The children of the family have always the full liberty of choosing their career, on condition, however, that they decide to remain among the dangers of the world...

The parents respecting the wishes of their children as a sacred thing... prepare them for a brilliant position, an alluring future...

But if I venture to knock at the door of a Christian home...if My Divine Voice calls one of their daughters or one of their sons, in order to make of them a celestial spouse or an apostle of My glory...

Oh! then, the family protests...this vocation, they say, is but the fantasy of a moment, a dream that will disappear...

And these parents who know by bitter experience the agonies and deceptions of the world, cry out as against a thief when I call their children, whom I have but temporarily confided to their care...

Ah! how they forget that I am the Master of the destiny of these souls!...

The family is Christian, O grief, I alone am always the Fool.

WE RESPOND: O Jesus, we adore the divine folly of Thy Cross.

- Excerpt from Holy Hour by The Rev. Fr. Mateo Crawley-Boevey, SS.CC.
Book Four
National Center for the Enthronement

A Prayer for Vocations can be found at Intercession for Priests

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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Legacy of an Adopted Child

Mother and Child
My mother found this while going through old papers.

Legacy of An Adopted Child
Author Unknown

Once there were two women,

Who barely knew each other.

One is in your heart forever,

The other you’ll call mother.

Two different lives,

Shaped to make yours one.

One became your guiding star,

The other became your sun.

The first gave you life,

And the second taught you how to live it.

The first gave you a need for love,

And the second was there to give it.

One gave you a nationality,

The other gave you a name.

One gave you the seed of talent,

The other gave you an aim.

One gave you emotions,

The other calmed your fears.

One saw your first sweet smile,

The other dried your tears.

One gave you a family,

It was what God intended for her to do.

The other prayed for a child,

And God led her straight to you.

And now you ask me

Through your tears,

The age old question through the years.

Heredity or environment…

Which are you a product of?

Neither, my darling… neither,

Just two different kinds of love.

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Pope Benedict: Year of the Priests

B16 and St. John Vianney

As you may already know our Holy Father Benedict XVI has proclaimed the Year of Priests commencing on June 19th, 2009 until June 19th, 2010. He has also proclaimed that he will grant plenary indulgences to the faithful, for the Year of Priest.
The year will begin with the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, “a day of priestly sanctification,” according to a press release from the Vatican. On that day, the Holy Father “will celebrate Vespers before relics” of St. Jean Marie Vianney, patron saint of priests.

The Year will end in St. Peter's Square, in the presence of priests from all over the world "who will renew their faithfulness to Christ and their bonds of fraternity."

The means to obtain the indulgence are as follows:

(A) All truly penitent priests who, on any day, devotedly pray Lauds or Vespers before the Blessed Sacrament exposed to public adoration or in the tabernacle, and ... offer themselves with a ready and generous heart for the celebration of the Sacraments, especially the Sacrament of Penance, will be granted a Plenary Indulgence, which they can also apply to their deceased confreres, if in accordance with current norms they take Sacramental Confession and the Eucharist and pray in accordance with the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff. Priests are furthermore granted a Partial Indulgence, also applicable to deceased confreres, every time they devotedly recite the prayers duly approved to lead a saintly life and to carry out the duties entrusted to them.

(B) All truly penitent Christian faithful who, in church or oratory, devotedly attend Holy Mass and offer prayers to Jesus Christ, supreme and eternal Priest, for the priests of the Church, or perform any good work to sanctify and mold them to His Heart, are granted a Plenary Indulgence, on the condition that they have expiated their sins through Sacramental Confession and prayed in accordance with the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff. This may be done on the opening and closing days of the Year of Priests, on the 150th anniversary of the death of St. Jean Marie Vianney, on the first Thursday of the month, or on any other day established by the ordinaries of particular places for the good of the faithful.

The elderly, the sick and all those who for any legitimate reason are unable to leave their homes, may still obtain a plenary indulgence if, with the soul completely removed from attachment to any form of sin and with the intention of observing, as soon as they can, the usual three conditions, "on the days concerned, they pray for the sanctification of priests and offer their sickness and suffering to God through Mary, Queen of the Apostles."

Additionally, a partial indulgence will be offered to the faithful each time they pray five “Our Father,” “Hail Mary” and “Glory Be,” or any other duly approved prayer "in honor of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, to ask that priests maintain purity and sanctity of life."
CNA Article

In a recent audience the Holy Father stated that a priest's calling is to become a saint.
"The Lord wants us to be saints," he affirmed, "in other words, entirely his, not concerned with building a career that is interesting and comfortable in human terms, not seeking success and the praise of others, but entirely dedicated to the good of souls, ready to do our duty unto the end, aware of being 'useful servants' and happy to offer our poor contribution to the spreading of the Gospel..."
Zenit Article Benedict XVI Calls Priests to Be Saints

I encourage you to read Fr. Trigilio's blog post regarding the Zenit article

Please pray for our priests!

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Monday, May 25, 2009

Catholic Chaplains

American Flag and Eagle
Let us remember them this Memorial Day.

American Catholic's Catholic Chaplains

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Memorial Day

Memorial Day

A Memorial Day Message From Fr. Corapi

As I write this I am in between two events: the first I just returned from—the controversial commencement exercises at the University of Notre Dame. The other one is Memorial Day. I have no trouble whatever immediately linking the two.

The University of Notre Dame and many other Catholic institutions in the United States contributed very significantly to making the United States of America the great nation that it once was, and could be again. These Catholic colleges, universities, high schools, and grammar schools formed generations of good Americans. They had a lot to do with the formation of the moral character of this nation, and through this nation much of the civilized world.

When freedom, truth, and goodness had to be defended against the Godless likes of Hitler and Stalin the United States, like other solid Christian countries, did more than their part. The reason they could do it had much to do with the moral and religious backbone of the individuals who were called upon to serve. We had learned from our priests and bishops, our good parents and grandparents, that principle was more important than prestige and morality far more essential than popularity.

Think back to what the moral fiber of this country was like in the 1950s, if you are old enough to remember. Recall that this was a free country then, but atrocities and outrages like pornography and abortion would have gotten you a stiff prison sentence rather than applause and general acceptance. The problem is that we’ve confused freedom and license, called promiscuity love, and frequently exchanged the truth of God for a lie.

In my hometown of Hudson, New York St. Mary’s Catholic Church has a chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Victory. It was, I believe, put in sometime around or after World War II. The wall that faces you when you enter the chapel is covered with small brass plates. On each plate is the name of a person that served his or her country during World War II. Some of the names, not a small number, have a star next to them indicating that the person was killed in action.

The Catholic Church has had a lot to do with the making of great nations by forming the great people that make for great nations. In more recent times I’m afraid we have frequently contributed to the weakening of great nations by the impoverished nature of the witness we have given. The Church herself is not confused, nor is her teaching ambiguous or weak. However, many leaders in the Church are confused and terribly weak in failing to give bold and uncompromising witness to authentic Catholic teaching. This has done incalculable damage to the Church, diluting Catholic identity, confusing the faithful, and compromising our ability to teach truth.

I’m afraid this Memorial Day I’m going to have to mourn more than the faithful ones who gave the supreme witness of their lives for our country. I won’t be able to help mourning the very substantial loss of Catholic witness and strength in our country and the world, and the terrible danger to freedom that this entails.

Then again, we know the last chapter of the Book: We win! Better days are coming.

God bless you,

Fr. John Corapi

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Sunday, May 24, 2009

Let's Hear it for NJ - Priestly Ordinations!

Priestly OrdinationPicture Source Hallowed Ground

Fr. Patrick of Blessed Sacrament Church attended the ordination yesterday at St. John the Baptist Church Paterson. He shared with us that one of the men ordained was an Israeli Jew who converted to Catholicism. Interestingly, Father Patrick also shared that the huge Archdiocese of New York ordained one priest this year.

On a sad note, following the ordination, Father stayed to attend the funeral mass of Sgt. Christian Buenos-Galdos, one of five men killed by a fellow soldier in Iraq.
The Paterson Diocese's seven make up the diocese's largest ordination class since 1978, according to its bishop, Arthur Serratelli. Six are from other countries: three from Poland, one from the Philippines, one from Israel, and one from Colombia.

"I think it's great," Serratelli said of his new priests' origins. "I've noticed in parishes that people consider American parishes, we have a great influx of Latinos. So there's an even greater need for more Latino priests who speak Spanish."
Read the article in its entirety here

Please continue to pray for vocations!!

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Just in Time for Pentecost - Fr. John Randall's Ray of Light

Fr. John Randall

Ed over at In God's Company 2 shares a new book by his friend Fr. Randall:
A new book written by Father John F. Randall offers theological and practical examination of the gift of the Holy Spirit in the Church, and aims to help people see the importance of the Holy Spirit in their lives.
Father Randall, pastor emeritus at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Providence, explained that the title of his book, “No Spirit, No Church,” comes from his early experience hearing the phrase "the poor and forgotten Holy Spirit..."
Be sure to read the rest of the article at Ed's blog.

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Feast Day of Maria Auxiliadora (Mary Help of Christians)

Maria Auxiliadora

Picture source of Maria Auxiliadora Juan Villacorta Paredes

Most Holy Virgin Mary, Help of Christian,
how sweet it is to come to your feet
imploring your perpetual help.
If earthly mothers cease not to remember their children,
how can you, the most loving of all mothers forget me?
Grant then to me, I implore you,
your perpetual help in all my necessities,
in every sorrow, and especially in all my temptations.
I ask for your unceasing help for all who are now suffering.
Help the weak, cure the sick, convert sinners.
Grant through your intercessions many vocations to the religious life.
Obtain for us, O Mary, Help of Christians,
that having invoked you on earth we may love and eternally thank you in heaven.

Fr. Don Bosco was a dedicated priest who took on blood-thirsty revolutionaries, the Italian government and his own archbishop in his quest to rescue the homeless children of Turin. This heroic priest’s undying belief in the boys he sought to help inspired them to fulfill their potential in the Catholic Faith. Don Bosco’s lifelong effort to save the children of the street became the foundation of the Salesians, one of the largest child care networks in the world.

Prayer Source EWTN

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