Sunday, December 31, 2006
Saturday, December 30, 2006
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
1. Favorite devotion or prayer to Jesus? The O My Jesus prayer after each decade of the rosary, the Divine Mercy chaplet, and prayers to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Saturday, December 23, 2006
64Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.
65Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy.
66What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death."
"36Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ."
6Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
7But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
8And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
9Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
10That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
11And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."
"26And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.
27Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.
28And Thomas answered and said unto him, My LORD and my God.
29Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast"
2The same was in the beginning with God.
3All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
4In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
5And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not."
15John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me. "
Thursday, December 21, 2006
VATICAN CITY, DEC 21, 2006 (VIS) - In a traditional meeting for this time of year, the Pope today received a group of children from Italian Catholic Action, who came to the Vatican to wish him a happy Christmas.
Addressing the young people, the Holy Father made reference to the slogan - "Beautiful. True" - they had chosen for their formative journey this year. "Christmas," he said, "is the great mystery of the Truth and Beauty of God Who came among us for everyone's salvation. The birth of Jesus is not a fable, it is a story that really happened, in Bethlehem two thousand years ago. Faith brings us to recognize in that little Child born of the Virgin Mary, the true Son of God Who, out of love, chose to become man."
"In the face of the little Jesus," the Holy Father proceeded, "we contemplate the face of God, which is not revealed through force or power, but in weakness and the fragile constitution of a child. This 'Divine Child' ... demonstrates the faithfulness and tenderness of the boundless love with which God surrounds each of us. For this reason we rejoice at Christmas, reliving the same experience as the shepherds of Bethlehem."
"The wonder we feel before the enchantment of Christmas" is, said Benedict XVI, in some way reflected in the birth of all children, "and it invites us to recognize the Infant Jesus in all babies, who are the joy of the Church and the hope of the world."
The Pope assured the children of his trust in them and called upon them "to be friends and witnesses of Jesus, Who came among us in Bethlehem. Is it not a beautiful thing to make Him better known among your friends, in cities, in parishes and in your families? The Church needs you in order to be close to all the children and young people who live in Italy. Bear witness to the fact that Jesus takes away nothing of your joy, but makes you more human, more true, more beautiful."
AC/CHRISTMAS/CATHOLIC ACTION VIS 061221 (360)
Sunday, December 17, 2006
Saturday, December 16, 2006
Another Important Prayer Request!
Thursday, December 14, 2006
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
VATICAN CITY, 1 APR 2008 (VIS) - Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for April is: "That Christians, even in the difficult and complex situations of present-day society, may not tire of proclaiming with their lives that Christ's resurrection is the source of peace and of hope".
His mission intention is: "That the future priests of the young Churches may be constantly more formed culturally and spiritually to evangelise their nations and the whole world".
BXVI-PRAYER INTENTIONS/APRIL/... VIS 080401 (90)
Monday, December 11, 2006
VATICAN CITY, DEC 9, 2006 (VIS) - The Pope today received participants in the 56th national study congress, promoted by the Union of Italian Catholic Jurists, which is being held in Rome on the theme: "Secularity and secularities."
The concept of secularity, said the Holy Father in his address to the group, originally referred to "the condition of simple faithful Christian, not belonging to the clergy or the religious state. During the Middle Ages it acquired the meaning of opposition between civil authorities and ecclesial hierarchies, and in modern times it has assumed the significance of the exclusion of religion and its symbols from public life by confining them to the private sphere and the individual conscience. In this way, the term secularity has acquired an ideological meaning quite opposite to the one it originally held."
Secularity today, then, "is understood as a total separation between State and Church, the latter not having any right to intervene in questions concerning the life and behavior of citizens. And such secularity even involves the exclusion of religious symbols from public places." In accordance with this definition, the Pope continued, "today we hear talk of secular thought, secular morals, secular science, secular politics. In fact, at the root of such a concept, is an a-religious view of life, thought and morals; that is, a view in which there is no place for God, for a Mystery that transcends pure reason, for a moral law of absolute value that is valid in all times and situations."
The Holy Father underlined the need "to create a concept of secularity that, on the one hand, grants God and His moral law, Christ and His Church, their just place in human life at both an individual and a social level, and on the other hand affirms and respects the 'legitimate autonomy of earthly affairs'."
The Church, the Pope reiterated, cannot intervene in politics, because that would "constitute undue interference." However, "'healthy secularity' means that the State does not consider religion merely as an individual sentiment that can be confined to the private sphere." Rather, it must be "recognized as a ... public presence. This means that all religious confessions (so long as they do not contrast the moral order and are not dangerous to public order) are guaranteed free exercise of their acts of worship."
Hostility against "any form of political or cultural relevance of religion," and in particular against "any kind of religious symbol in public institutions" is a degenerated form of secularity, said the Holy Father, as is "refusing the Christian community, and those who legitimately represent it, the right to pronounce on the moral problems that today appeal to the conscience of all human beings, particularly of legislators.
"This," he added, "does not constitute undue interference of the Church in legislative activity, which is the exclusive competence of the State, but the affirmation and the defense of those great values that give meaning to people's lives and safeguard their dignity. These values, even before being Christian, are human, and therefore cannot leave the Church silent and indifferent, when she has the duty firmly to proclaim the truth about man and his destiny."
The Pope concluded by highlighting the need "to bring people to understand that the moral law God gave us - and that expresses itself in us through the voice of conscience - has the aim not of oppressing us but of freeing us from evil and of making us happy. We must show that without God man is lost, and that the exclusion of religion from social life, and in particular the marginalization of Christianity, undermines the very foundations of human coexistence. Such foundations, indeed, before being of the social and political order, belong to the moral order."
AC/SECULARITY/... VIS 061211 (640)
Sunday, December 10, 2006
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
Tuesday, December 05, 2006
VATICAN CITY, DEC 5, 2006 (VIS) - Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. sent a message to Luciano Corradini, national president of the Italian Catholic Union of Middle School Teachers (UCIIM), and to participants in that association's 22nd national congress. The congress was held in Rome recently on the theme: "Education in schools. New scenarios, new responsibilities."
In his message, the cardinal gives assurances of Benedict XVI's appreciation for the activities of the UCIIM which, he recalls, was founded by Gesualdo Nosengo in 1944 and "works actively in schools, promoting initiatives for the cultural and didactic aggiornamento of teachers, showing particular concern for their religious and spiritual growth, and supporting all initiatives that effectively seek to promote the education of youth. [The Pope] encourages you to continue along this path, facing the challenges of the modern age with farsighted courage."
Cardinal Bertone continues: "The formation of new generations, as never before in history, calls for much shared reflection, and for the preparation of educational and pastoral strategies aimed at meeting the expectations of the world of youth in the third millennium. It is necessary to transmit to young people an appreciation of the positive value of life, arousing in them the desire to spend their own lives in the service of Good. And this requires a responsible contribution on everyone's part: teachers, parents, pastors and all people who truly have the future of humanity at heart."
SS/EDUCATION:UCIIM/BERTONE VIS 061205 (250)
Monday, December 04, 2006
Friday, December 01, 2006
Monday, November 27, 2006
According to an anonymous source, the Vatican has decided for security reasons to send Pope Benedict's decoy (who is known normally in the Vatican only as Dr. Petrus) to Turkey. He has been practicing the part as pope the last couple of days including this photo period taken on Sunday before the Angelus. Pope Benedict sends his apostolic blessing to his decoy and prays for his protection before the big trip. There is only one problem everyone is crossing their fingers about---he doesn't know a word of German.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
Saturday, November 25, 2006
Q. 1. Your article on Mysterium-Fidei on how a liturgical abuse at your parish stopped is very exciting! Please explain to your knowledge how this abuse started, in your parish.
A. About 6 months ago, our bishop sent a seminarian to Delta to assist our pastor during the Holy Week Liturgies. Now, our pastor did not want the seminarian to feel like he had nothing to do, so he allowed him to fraction the wine [Precious Blood], thinking this was just one more thing. (Please understand, our pastor did not mean bad by this.) Prior to this event our pastor did not fraction.
Q. 2. Why do you think this abuse continued even after Rome put out Redemptionis Sacramentum stating that fractioning was to come to an end?
A. Rome put this document out, because it knew that the Precious Blood was being spilled often. So, they figured that if the wine was poured during the Offertory, than if it was spilt, "O well, it's just wine!" Now, before our pastor started fractioning, the Precious Blood had not been spilled, but after he started, it has been spilled 7 times.
Q. 3. What happened that caused the fractioning to come to an end?
A. Well, after much controversy in the parish, the priest was notified by about 10 people, urging him to stop this act which was a sin against the Precious Blood. The priest felt pressured and decided to change his mind. The secondary thing that changed his mind was that it was less time consuming to do it the correct way.
Q. 4. What advice would you give to others who have similar abuses in their parishes that want to do something?
A. Please, I beg you, don't run in like a lion. Charity above all. First pray, and then talk to your liturgist, and if that doesn't work, talk to the priest himself. Give him the reasons, and show him the document. Be persistent, but not pushy! If this doesn't work, than you can always go to your local ordinary. While the Congregation for Divine Worship is another step, it is unlikely they will take this matter as a "gravatori delictica." If nothing happens, go back to step one: pray. Pray for conversion of heart.
Just as an update as to the situation in my parish: I have written my liturgist and I am going to be talking to her next week. Please pray all goes well!
Copyright 2006 Our Lady of Sorrows inc.
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
VATICAN CITY, NOV 21, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office today released a communique stating: "The Holy Father Benedict XVI has completed writing the first part of a book, the title of which is 'Gesu di Nazareth. Dal Battesimo nel Giordano alla Trasfigurazione' (Jesus of Nazareth, From His Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration) and, within the last few days, has consigned it to the Vatican Publishing House. The book will be published in spring 2007"
VATICAN CITY, NOV 22, 2006 (VIS) - Holy See Press Office Director Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J., has written a note concerning a forthcoming book by Benedict XVI, scheduled for publication in the spring of 2007. The title of the volume is: "Gesu di Nazareth. Dal Battesimo nel Giordano alla Trasfigurazione" (Jesus of Nazareth, From His Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration).
The Vatican Publishing House, which holds the copyright on all the Pope's writings, has ceded the world rights for the translation, distribution and marketing of this book to the Rizzoli Publishing House.
"The fact that Benedict XVI has managed to complete the first part of his great book on Jesus, and that within a few months we will have it in our hands, is wonderful news," writes Fr. Lombardi in his note. "I find it extraordinary that despite the duties and concerns of the pontificate, he has managed to complete a work of such great academic and spiritual depth. He says he dedicated all his free time to the project; and this itself is a very significant indication of the importance and urgency the book has for him.
"With his habitual simplicity and humility, the Pope explains that this is not a 'work of Magisterium' but the fruit of his own research, and as such it can be freely discussed and criticized. This is a very important observation, because it makes clear that what he writes in the book in no way binds the research of exegetes and theologians. It is not a long encyclical on Jesus, but a personal presentation of the figure of Jesus by the theologian Joseph Ratzinger, who has been elected as Bishop of Rome."
In the book's preface, Fr. Lombardi's note says, the Holy Father "explains that in modern culture, and in many presentations of the figure of Jesus, the gap between the 'historical Jesus' and the 'Christ of the faith' has become ever wider. ... Joseph Ratzinger, taking into consideration all the achievements of modern research, aims to present the Jesus of the Gospels as the real 'historical Jesus,' as a sensible and convincing figure to Whom we can and must trustingly refer, and upon Whom we have good reason to base our faith and our Christian life. With his book, then, the Pope aims to offer a fundamental service to support the faith of his brothers and sisters, and he does so from the central element of the faith: Jesus Christ."
In the introduction to the book, Fr. Lombardi continues, "Jesus is presented to us as the new Moses, the new prophet who speaks with 'God face to face,' ... the Son, deeply united to the Father. If this essential aspect is overlooked, the figure of Jesus become contradictory and incomprehensible. With passion, Joseph Ratzinger speaks to us of Jesus' intimate union with the Father, and wishes to ensure that Jesus' disciples participate in this communion. It is, then, a great work of exegesis and theology, but also a great work of spirituality."
Fr. Lombardi concludes: "Recalling the profound impression and the spiritual fruits that, as a young man, I drew from reading Joseph Ratzinger's first work - 'Introduction to Christianity' - I am sure that this time too we will not be disappointed, but that both believers and all people truly disposed to understand more fully the figure of Jesus, will be immensely grateful to the Pope for his great witness as a thinker, scholar and man of faith, on the most essential point of the entire Christian faith."
OP/BOOK BENEDICT XVI/LOMBARDI VIS 061122 (600)
Sunday, November 19, 2006
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
A Secret Society... A Spirit.... And a Catastrophe....
These habit filled nuns are increasing in numbers.Here is a good article in defense of the habit.
Monday, November 13, 2006
Thursday, November 09, 2006
I have just recently finished helping teach at our church in our First Reconciliation Class. I feel confident that some of the students are ready to make their First Confession. And yes, I said some. Unfortunately, some of the students do not know much at all. They come to class, and although the class may be good, it is only 1 hour each week. If the children have not had proper religious education at home, they will suffer in their faith, and a First Confession class will only confuse them. For example, if they don't know who God is, they can't possibly understand His mercy and why we need forgiveness. Religious education at home is what is essential. The local parish may be able to provide some education, but it should only be supplementary. I can tell the difference between the children whose parents at home have gone over the "homework" (the terms and ideas of Reconciliation), and those kids whose parents bring them but do not teach their children.
Homosexual parade cancelled. Now they'll just do a demonstration.....
Get the story here.
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Sunday, November 05, 2006
"An indulgence is a remission before God of the temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven, which the faithful Christian who is duly disposed gains under certain prescribed conditions through the action of the church which, as the minister of redemption, dispenses and applies with authority the treasury of the satisfactions of Christ and the saints" (Indulgentarium Doctrina norm 1)."An indulgence is partial or plenary according as it removes either part or all of the temporal punishment due to sin" (ibid. norm 2, norm 3).What that means is that an indulgence will remove either partially or completely your temporal punishment from sin. So what is temporal punishment? Temporal punishment is the punishment acquired even though our sins may have been forgiven in whole. It is like if you broke your neighbor's window when you were a kid playing baseball. Even though you would tell them your sorry, and they forgive you, you will still have to pay for the broken window. Temporal punishment is that. Namely, we still have punishment- not that it will send us to Hell-but that it must be paid for because of the very fact we have sinned. It's called making reparation for your sin.So, how do I gain an indulgence? There are certain requirements that must be followed in order to gain an indulgence.1. First of all you must be in a state of sanctifying grace. That is, you have no mortal sin on your soul.2. You must be Catholic3. You must have the intention of gaining the particular indulgence.For partial indulgences:You have to carry out the action with a contrite heart.For Plenary indulgences:Same as partial, plus you must go to confession within 8 days before or after the act is done, receive Holy Communion, pray for the pope's intentions, (1 Our Father and Hail Mary are enough, but substitutions are allowed.), and you must be free from all attachment to all sin including venial sin.So, to gain the Plenary Indulgence for a soul in Purgatory you must go to confession, receive Holy Communion, Pray for the pope's intentions, be free from all attachment to all sin (no matter how small!), and visit a cemetery and pray for the souls in Purgatory! Wowsers! I hope you got all of that! Really it is not that difficult to fulfil, except for perhaps the condition that requires one to be free from all attachment to sin. I know that only God can know if we truly are, and not many of us are anywhere close.One final note: Indulgences are not a means to earn one's salvation. To receive an indulgence, one must already be a in a state of Sanctifying Grace (the grace needed for Heaven). As I said before, indulgences only remove temporal punishment-not eternal punishment. Also, indulgences can not be bought over e-bay, or sent in the mail. They are something that God bestows on us through His Holy Catholic Church. The Pope cannot just wave his hand and put an indulgence on you. They are not magic. It is only a gift from God, to help us grow closer to Him, and it is a sign of His infinite Mercy!