Saturday, December 25, 2010

Padre Pio's Christmas Meditation

Far into the night, at the coldest time of the year, in a chilly grotto, more suitable for a flock of beasts than for humans, the promised Messiah – Jesus – the savior of mankind, comes into the world in the fullness of time.

There are none who clamor around him: only an ox and an ass lending their warmth to the newborn infant; with a humble woman, and a poor and tired man, in adoration beside him.

Nothing can be heard except the sobs and whimpers of the infant God. And by means of his crying and weeping he offers to the Divine justice the first ransom for our redemption.

He had been expected for forty centuries; with longing sighs the ancient Fathers had implored his arrival. The sacred scriptures clearly prophesy the time and the place of his birth, and yet the world is silent and no one seems aware of the great event. Only some shepherds, who had been busy watching over their sheep in the meadows, come to visit him. Heavenly visitors had alerted them to the wondrous event, inviting them to approach his cave.

You can read the rest here.

Friday, December 24, 2010

My Christmas Message

Stained Glass of the Nativity, SHC, Honolulu

Dear Friends:

I wish you a very blessed and Merry Christmas. May God bless each and everyone of you abundantly.

Please welcome the newborn baby Jesus with true joy in your heart. We cannot control the pain and suffering in the world that many times affects us directly and personally. But we can put God first during this blessed season and have peace in our hearts. So just for Christmas, let us put aside all our troubles and those of of the world and let us focus on our countless blessings. Christ was born on that very first Christmas so that one day we can be saved. Let us remember the love God had for each one of us when The Word was made Flesh.


Pope Benedict XVI's Message for Christmas

Picture source

“The child that was born in Bethlehem did indeed bring liberation, but not only for the people of that time and place-- he was to be the Saviour of all people throughout the world and throughout history,” the Pope said. “And it was not a political liberation that he brought, achieved through military means: rather, Christ destroyed death for ever and restored life by means of his shameful death on the Cross.”

Full text can be found here

H/T to Catholic Culture.

Gifts for Children...No Batteries Needed

Picture source

Brother John Samaha, S.M.

After the batteries have long expired on other gifts, these intangible gifts will long endure. They were recommended by Canaan Mantermach and Carl J. Pfeifer through the Department of Religious Education of the National Catholic Education Association.

Time. It shows them how much you mean to them.

Love. Nothing is more important than love.

Sense of justice. This includes fidelity to relationships and responsibilities.

Laughter and joy. Happiness nurtures. Morality is a byproduct of growing up with laughter and joy.

Celebration. Find something special to do each month as well as mark special occasions.

Spirituality. Show the importance of prayer and Sunday worship.

Forgiveness and healing. Never let children go to sleep without being forgiven for a wrong, or healing a hurt.

Truth. Help them to be truthful and honest. Insist on this.

Respect. Respect the property of others. Give the example.

Books. Urge children to read, and read aloud with them.

Hawaiian Christmas Carols

1. O Holy Night - Po Hemolele- Willie K

2. Hark the Herald Angels Sing - Hamau E Na Kanaka - Amy Hanaialii

3. It Came Upon a Midnight Clear - Ka Po La`ela`e Ka Hikina Mai - Jesse Tinsley

4. Away in the Manger -He Kapu Hanai /Silent Night- Po La`ie - Jesse Tinsley

5. Santa Island - Na Leo

6. Twelve Days of Christmas - Hawaiian Style - Na Leo

7. Blue Christmas - Robi Kahakalau

8. Merry Christmas to You - Henry Kapono

9. Carol of the Bells - Jake Shimabukuro

10. Ave Maria - Willie K

The Catholicism Project - New Trailer

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Have a Mass Offered for the Iraqi Christians on Christmas

Iraqi nuns hold a picture of Archbishop Paulos Rahho as they pray during his funeral

Picture source

As most of you are aware, the Iraqi Christians cannot attend Christmas Mass because of the mortal danger it poses to them. Iraqi Christians Cancel Christmas Celebrations and Mass in Wake of Threats

Please keep these persecuted brothers and sisters in Iraqi in your prayers. Since they are prevented from attending Mass on Christmas, please consider having a Mass offered for their intentions this Christmas. If you are unable to have your parish offer a Mass for them because of this late notice, you can still offer up your mass attendance and Holy Communion for them when you attend Christmas Mass. You can also pray for them during the Elevation of the Host at the Consecration. That is when our prayers are more powerful.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Some of My Favorite Christmas Carols

Picture source


1. Away in the Manger - Nat King Cole

2. Mary's Boy Child - Harry Belafonte

3. Gesu Bambino - Luciano Pavarotti

4. The Holly and the Ivy - Medieval Baebes

5. Sans Day Carol - Gonzaga Choir

6. Infant Holy, Infant Lowly - King's College, Cambridge

7. Once in Royal David's City - St. Paul's Cathedral

8. I Saw Three Ships - Blackmore's Night

9. Bring the Torch, Jeannette Isabella

10. O Holy Night - Luciano Pavarotti & Placido Domingo

Reminders about Christmas and Holy Communion

Sacred Heart Church Honolulu last Christmas

Father Z has some reminders for Catholics: here.

First, if you are not in the state of grace, don’t just go to Holy Communion anyway. That’s a sacrilege and a mortal sin. Those of you who are lax about Mass attendance need to remember that not going to Holy Mass on Sundays and other days of obligation, when you could go, is a mortal sin. Go to confession and then make your good Holy Communion. We all know the bit about making a perfect act of contrition… maybe you can do that and maybe you can’t. That’s up to you. But God cannot be fooled. If you know you shouldn’t receive then don’t...

Don We Now Our Gray Apparel: The Grinch Who Stole Christmas 17 Times

Father Gordon MacRae's latest post, and it's another good one, can be found here.

Please remember the pray for all imprisoned people, especially the innocent.

Ask Blessed Seelos for a Gift Today

Shared by Mary Jane:
166 years ago today, Francis Xavier Seelos was ordained a Priest. A Priest forever according to the law of Melchizedek. He is filled with joy and waiting for you to ask for a gift. Prayers can be found at Seelos Center

Monday, December 20, 2010

50 Reasons to be Catholic

St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church

I found the following list on Richard's blog:

See if you can add to the list :-)
50 Reasons to be Catholic

1. We are not emergent, we are eternal
2. We have Cardinal Zen
3. And Cardinal Sin
4. We are not liberal, we love our neighbour
5. We do not use the words ‘clown’ and ‘eucharist’ in the same sentence
6. We are not conservative, we look to God alone
7. Bells….bells….and more bells
8. We have a cloistered nun as the patron saint of missionaries (St Therese de Lisieux)
9. Announcements of our faith halt the conversation at dinner parties
10. The only religion responsible for the smallest nation state
11. We have confession – much cheaper than a psychologist
12. We have the Swiss Guards and their uniforms
13. Catholic morality gives politicians headaches
14. Ash Wednesday can’t be exploited by McDonalds or the greetings card industry
15. Our liturgy gives Freemasons indigestion
16. St Jerome is the patron saint of anger – hope for us all
17. Because when you have tacky statues etc you know you must be in the one true Church
18. We know what cherubim and seraphim are
19. Palestrina
20. St Lawrence (while being burnt to death – “turn me over; I’m done on this side”)
21. Incense smells better than cigar smoke
22. The litany of saints has the best names for your children
23. People do not tour Europe looking at great Protestant Cathedrals do they?
24. We love beauty, ritual and ceremony and are proud of it
25. The Latin Mass is the same the world over
26. Candles
27. If you become a saint parts of your body may become relics
28. We use phrases such as ‘supernatural existential’, ‘diochronicity’ and ‘the hermeneutic of continuity’
29. Mystery is more than a section in the local library
30. We have blessings and Masses to cope with plagues of frogs, illnesses, heresy etc etc
31. We say the black and do the red
32. We don’t call our priests ‘Jim’ or ‘Eric’
33. We have a St Bobo, St Bean and St Quadragesimus
34. Pope Benedict XVI
35. St Paul who said: ‘a little wine for thy stomach’s sake’
36. Orange is not a liturgical colour in the Catholic Church
37. No other denomination buries statues or prays in order to sell a house
38. Fish is good for you
39. We use a dead language and don’t give a damn!
40. No hand puppets, tambourines, clowns, guitars or dancing allowed in the liturgy
41. No crèches in Church, infants stay with us for Mass
42. If you are shy you can be a contemplative
43. We believe that a state of Grace is a condition of the soul, not part of the USA
44. Our religious orders pray during both the night and the day
45. With Our Lady and St Michael, no demons can touch us
46. Thuribles
47. Vestments that look as though they are intended for the worship of God, not as if they were the work of demented seamstresses high on drugs
48. A liturgy that does not patronise
49. The blessing of the throats (February 3nd)
50. Angels