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Showing posts from July, 2010

In Spiritu et Veritate: In Spiritu et Veritate

In Spiritu et Veritate: In Spiritu et Veritate: "In Spiritu et Veritate is a ministry of the new (and old) evangelism at the service of Christ's command to enangelize and disciple. Evangel..."

That TONE

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Mark Pattison writes in CNS about the  bloggers' role in relationship with the church.  The bishops often are the publishers of diocesan newspapers, and other media outlets, and as such are concerned over the tone/behavior of some bloggers.
  The Webinar (Faithful Catholic Media: Continuing the Conversation) was held July 28 and sponsored by the Catholic Press Association.  Naturally, the bishops are concerned about the influence some bloggers (not I) have on the faithful.  The chairman of the Communications Committe, Bishop Gabino Zavala, LA, focused on 3 aspects that make blogging unique:
*   Catholic perspective to events *   Respectful and civil (Not like the secular media) *   Input for Church leaders
The one that was most disturbing was the second concern: "Christian respect".  Some bloggers attack church leadership, in a less than "civil and respectful" manner.  
You know what I think the problem is?  The problem is two-fold: the impersonal nature of the writt…

Another Vatican Hypocrisy

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Imagine the chutzpah!  The Vatican, which is accused of sexual immorality, has the nerve to tell its guests how to dress!  What host does that?   By what right does the Church have to dictate morality?

The Vatican has issued it's dress code for visitors.  An article addressing the norms gives the shocked reactions of some of the visitors.  I mean, really....

A man in shorts is speared by a guisarme.
A women in a halter top is pierced with a halberd.
An elderly couple wearing tank tops was threatened with the bardiche.
One innocent child was almost beheaded by a glaive.

....and the list goes on...

Well, isn't this what you would have expected from the headline "Vatican Accused of Hypocrisy over Short Skirts?"

I guess anything to sell newspaper, even hyperbolic misrepresentation.

Related articles by ZemantaVatican accused of hypocrisy over short skirts dress code (telegraph.co.uk)

Mystery

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I'm speaking of mystery meaning what is not known.  It is something that only a few understand, or know.  For example, an artist and his creation.  The artist is trying to convey something with his work.  We viewing it may understand some of it, but now all the artist's intention.  This is how "mystery" is meant, in the Christian sense.
     The word "mystery," itself, is from Greek.  It's meaning is, not something obscure, but a secret given only to a few.  Did you know that "mystery" occurs 28 times in the New Testament? The word is used chiefly by Paul, who knew Greek. Paul accepted this term (mystery) to indicate the fact that, his Gospel message had been revealed to him by the Christ.

The word in a few passages refers to a symbol, allegory or parable, which conceals its meaning from those who look only at the literal sense, but is the medium of revelation to those who have been given the grace to understand. Its most common meaning is that …

Guilty Priest Freed

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A Catholic priest who pleaded guilty to rape and sodomy of a 13 year old girl in the 1970's, and was accused of six offenses, plea bargained to 42 days in a psychiatric hospital.  That's not the end of the story.

He heard rumors that he was going to be retried.  He fled the US.  He landed in Switzerland where he was placed under arrest.  It was house arrest until his trial for extradition.  The verdict was favorable towards him.  He will not be extradited back to the US.  He is safe.  He is free.

What do you think of that?

Well, think again, because I made a mistake.  I said Catholic Priest, but it should have been Film Director Roman Polanski.

h/t Father Tim and his Hermeneutic of Continuity

Catholic Church v. Vampires

Priest Trailer
Uploaded by teasertrailer. - Check out other Film & TV videos.

Visual effects are cool.  It's based on manhwa comic books.  The movie is called Priest.

Blogging, Again

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The Voice of Russia web site, has an article about Patriarch Kirill telling his priests to blog.  Pope Benedict has harped on this theme also.  I guess there must be something to it, huh?  The Patriarch urges social networking and blogging as good vehicles to get their message across.


"Many priests and church hierarchs have their own blogs in the global network," he says. "It helps people seeking their paths in life. Jesus Christ taught His apostles to attract people by the word. High technology and the Internet should serve the same purpose."    
"The Church wants to make itself understood to most readers," he says. "This does not mean that church bloggers should use a primitive or false language. Unlike former Internet resources, social networks and blogs make it possible to talk and listen. Communication is crucial. A contemporary user wants two-way communication, so that they could ask questions and receive the answers, and could enter discussions…

Father Murphy

Did you hear about Father Murphy?

He's the pastor from hell, that is perceived to be nasty, many perceive to be not very pastoral.You know; is mean to old ladies, pushes the altar servers around, makes fun of the pious, and steals from the poor box.

Well, he was run over by a truck.

When he appeared at the pearly gates, St. Peter asked him if he was the infamous Nazi Pastor.  Naturally, he denied it, and named a few good deeds he had done.  St. Peter has a soft spot for priests, and wanted to give Father Murphy a chance.  So he told Father that he'd check with the Boss.

St. Peter came back and said that God said, "No way.  Father Murphy has to take the elevator down."

"But...but...but", Father Murphy protested.  "Remind the Boss that the morning I died, I put a couple of bucks in the poor box."

St. Peter hopefully carried the message to God.

A few minutes later, St. Peter returned and said, "God said, take your couple of bucks, and go to hell…

Blogging as a Vocation

I prefer to think of it as a cyber ministry.

Seriously.

Catechism for Kids Game

Here's a new video game for kids. It's not out yet, but watch for it.

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Season Five Sign Up

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The last ARISE program, Season 5, is open to anyone, even if you never participated before.
You are welcome. Faith sharing groups will begin the week of Oct. 3rd. You may sign up
on-line, http://www.stmarysfranklin.org/arise_registration.php, or on Sign Up Sunday, Sept.18-19.

ARISE Together in Christ
We're looking ahead to the fall
To begin Season 5 for us all
Get ready to sign on the dotted line
For we hope that you'll answer the call.




Forgiveness

"...I feel that if I choose not to forgive him that I let him take up space in my head that I could be and should be using for far greater things.’’  Inspired, wise words spoken by a teenager, who was raped.  The girl was a 14 year old girl volunteering in a hospital, for a summer.   She was raped in the stairwell, in that hospital.  See Link.


This girl will move on.  Her life is better and she has a future.  As Bishop Tutu said, "There is No Future without Forgiveness."  It isn't easy, but for the mental, emotional, and spiritual health of a victim, it's a necessity.


I pray for everyone involved in this crime.

The Statue of Our Lady of Fatima

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You know that beautiful statue of Our Lady of Fatima with an over sized golden crown.  That's not authentic.  There was no golden humongous jeweled filled crown.  Our Lady was dressed very simply.

Sister Lucy said  "that there were only two garments visible, a simple tunic and a long veil or mantle. The tunic had no collar and no cuffs. Nor was there a cincture or a sash around the waist, although the tunic was drawn in at the waist. The sleeves were not wide, and the mantle and the tunic were a wave of light. When Tom (the sculptor, Fr. Tom McGlynn, O.P.) asked her how one distinguished between the mantle and the tunic, she said,"There were two waves of light, one on top of the other." When Tom asked her if there was a line of gold on the mantle, she explained "It was like a ray of sunlight all around the mantle." She further explained that this ray around the mantle was like a thin thread. The mantle ... was a thing all made of light and very light, but…

Did the Trinity Exist Before Creation?

Do you want to know how impossible it is to answer that particular question?  Read Ecclesiastes 3:11, which states that God "...has put eternity into man's mind, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end."  IOW, there's no way any human being can know what God has done.     Additionally, since God is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, and there's no way we mere humans can ever comprehend him, then what he has created is beyond our human ability to comprehend.  Revelation 1:8, 21:6, and 22:13.

Comparing God with Ourselves

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I'm reading Summa Theologica, again.  I'm still in Part 1 and will probably be there for the rest of my life.  I'm particularly focusing on what AQ says about the Trinity.  (Yes, I'm still working on that Formation Module.)  I got a little sidetracked (And you thought web surfing was bad.)  and got involved in reading about the relationship between God and ourselves.  And you know what?  We ain't so hot.


God  Humans Free                                              All kinds of hang ups Complete                                      Still growing and learning Omnipotent                                   Have various degrees of helplessness Omnipresent                                  Live moment to moment Omniscent                                     Dumb, Dumber, Dumbest Infinite                                           Finite Lives in perfect love                       Only occasionally
That’s enough.  The list is depressing/awesome/amazing/fearsome/ and in the least, im…

God in Prison

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Another inmate committed suicide in a Mass Correctional Institution.  And this one was in a maximum security facility--inmates are watched 24/7.  This one was also in the treatment facility.  "Suicides in Massachusetts state prisons are occurring at a rate more than four times the national average this year, prompting advocates and inmates’ relatives to call for an urgent response from state officials — and spurring the Patrick administration yesterday to hire a suicide prevention specialist." Link to Boston.com

Listening to the night bell.
I hear some cry and think the end--
this place so cold, and damp, my cell.
A wretch cast into so deep a well--
no love, no hope, no family, no friend.
My lips to heaven plea to send
help of any kind for one who fell
so far down into the jaws of hell.
They call it prayer and I feel it mend
my fear, my loneliness, guilt driven.
Is it true I can be forgiven?
There is a God of mercy and love.
He feels my fear and hears my plea
and responds with absolution …

Blessing

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My first grandchild!  May I introduce you to Baby Lucy.  She arrived this morning, July 14, 2010, weighing in at 7 lbs. 12 oz, 21 inches long.  She has so much hair you can part it.  Daddy quipped, "Instead of bringing a bonnet, we should have brought a hair scrungie."  
All is well.  My daughter, the Mommy is well, but tired.  The baby is eating and disposing very heartily.  She is thriving.  
Deo Gratias.
It is very humbling to be a part of God's plan.  I helped create the Mom, who continued the process.  God is great.  Just to look upon a new born, new life, proof of love, is meditative.  Does God love us this much?

Where does "Trinity" Come From?

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The term, “Trinity” was used by St. Theophilius of Antioch, in the year A.D. 180.He wrote in his epistle to Autolycus, a pagan critic of the Catholic Church, that God, His word, and wisdom are a trinity (Greek:triados). Some year later,Tertullian, (A.D. 160—circa 250) a Latin theologian, coined the Latin term for trinity (trinitas), in his work “On Modesty.”He wrote about the trinity of the One Divinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.In addition, he explained more specifically that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit were of “One in essence—not one in Person.”(Ante-Nicene Fathers 3.621; circa 213 A.D.) The early church writers drew upon many biblical references to God’s unity and transcendence as well as old testament episodes, known as “Theophanies”—mysterious appearances of one or more persons of the Trinity.[i] Examples of theophanies and mysterious appearances, and sometimes implicit references to the three persons in the Trinity are Genesis 1:26, (where God speaks of Himself in the plur…

Gifts

My son-in-law celebrated his birthday today.  He was happy with his gifts.  But it set me to wondering.  Gifts are suppose to be pleasurable for the giver as well as the receiver.  Luckily, today fell into that category.

But I remember one time when my friends and I use to swap Christmas gifts.  We'd put a limit on our gifts--no more than $ 10.  To me that meant giving junk.  But they insisted; so I went along with it.  Otherwise you'd be considered a Scrooge.   I turned out to be worse than a Scrooge.  I was complaining about this to another friend and she listened politely.  When I was finished she handed me a gift and said, "Well, here's another piece of junk."

Ouch.

I did learn that lesson.  I learned to keep my mouth shut and just be happy.  I try to look at it as giving pleasure to someone.  But really.  I'm trying to simplify my life.  I don't need anything.  But I'll accept the giver's gifts graciously because I learned that the giver is t…

So, I Love You

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I just saw the most touching scene at Mass, tonight.  A few rows up from me was a family.  After Communion, while we were waiting for everyone to finish, a little girl, too young to receive was leaning against her Daddy.

We were singing, We Have Been Told.   When we came to the words,  "As the Father has loved me," the Daddy looked down at his daughter and sang to her, "So, I have loved you."

Indeed.  He does.

Fool Proof Plan

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My Spiritual Director and I have thought of a way to beat the system.  We're talking about getting into heaven.

Yup.  It's fool proof because it's so quick.  I wonder why others haven't thought of it, before.  Maybe they have but can't tell us, anymore. What am I talking about?  Well, my S.D. will kill me right after confession.

See?  Fool proof!

You see, we always begin spiritual direction with confession.  That's just the way it is.  It is what it is!  So one day, unbeknown to me, he'll shoot me.  There--I'm golden.

Then his spiritual director will do him the favor.....ad infinitum.

What do you think?

Insidiousness

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In case your wondering what happened to my posting Catholics Come Home, I deleted it.  I  linked to the Catholics Come Home site and was talking about how great it was.  It would be a great follow up to the program, Arise Together in Christ, that my parish has undertaken.

The trouble was that I couldn't embed the video on the Catholics Come Home page.  So I went to You Tube, and searched for Catholic Come Home videos.  The problem was, the one I chose, which I thought was the one that had Tom Peterson introducing Catholic Come Home, was an anti-Catholic video.

I can't see CCH giving authorization to this guy, to use for his purposes. When I listened to his talk, Bill is up front saying he's an ex-Catholic.  I thought that was perfect.  He's going to explain how he came home.  Only, he doesn't.  He claims that the Catholic Church is spiritually abusing its people.  I couldn't believe my ears.  This was Catholic Come Home, wasn't it.

No it wasn't. It…

Thomas Richard Heath O.P.

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Thomas Richard Heath O.P. By T.K. Kraft, O.P. Published by  Province of St. Joseph,                                                     2010, 156 pp.           For the past few years, I’ve always heard references regarding “Father Tom’s Kids.”  I vaguely understood that this term referred to the students in our Kenyan Vicariate, that were looking for sponsors.  But I never knew who Father Tom was.  Consequently, I was happy to hear that a book had been written about Father Tom. Thomas Richard Heath O.P. is an excellent little book.  It is beautiful.  I know you can’t judge a book by its cover, but this cover definitely attracts you.  It is a full page, colored picture of a relaxing Father Tom.  The pictures inside the book are numerous and artfully arranged, too.  They are “eye candy.”           Luckily, Father Tom was a prolific writer.  He kept journals, correspondence, wrote books, articles, and poems.  There were plenty of materials, for the autho…

In Defense of SPOOKS

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My friend has a particular dislike, of what she disdainly refers to as SPOOKS.  (Spiritual, Pious, Observance Of the King)  IOW, people that practice devotions.  She says that the Mass is enough.  She also prays the Liturgy of the Hours, daily, and does a lot of meditation.  Praiseworthy, to be sure, but others love other devotions.

I'm specifically referring to people in prayer groups, Divine Mercy, First Saturdays, Rosary groups, Eucharistic Adoration, etc.  Actually, she's thinking of those types of devotions.  People that wear crosses larger than the Pope's, "scare her," she says.  These spiritual, pious, observance of the King types, make her uneasy.

Why?  I think because she's just not that type.  Notice, her preference for devotions: LOH, meditation--all done alone.  Whereas most of the others are in a group setting.  These pious people, that she makes fun of, are the very people who are praying for her, and the parish.  Their prayers, and sacrifices a…

Jesus Set Us Free

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I thought it quite apropos that July 4th fell on a Sunday, this year.  What better way to celebrate freedom, than worshiping the One who set us free. The month of July is dedicated to the Most Precious Blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  Jesus shed his blood to free us from sin.  This is the freedom that gives us peace.  Peace being the correct order of life, what's important, orientating the world towards God.


Also at Mass this morning, we recalled our brave soldiers who shed their blood for us, fighting for a different kind of freedom.  A freedom from oppressors, and fighting to keep that freedom.  We celebrate with parades and fireworks to proclaim our Independence.


Both types of freedom were hard fought.  Both types of freedom involve sacrifice.  Both types of freedom are celebrated on this day, Sunday, July 4, 2010.



You Can't Make This Stuff Up.

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The Trinity has a great impact on Catholics.  We begin our prayers with “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”  Non-believers may ask, “I thought you believers believed in one God?” “We do.”     Of course, this line of thought leads to an explanation of the Trinity.  No explanation can do justice to the magnificent reality of God being three unique Persons, and at the same time One Person.  One can try to explain the Trinity by referencing the Bible, but the word, Trinity, as such, is not mentioned in the Bible.  The term “Holy Trinity,” has been used for many centuries by Christians to embody the  concept of Trinity, which is presented as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.         Many have tried to explain the concept of the Trinity.  Sometimes they help to understand, but they all have their limitations.  I have encountered “1x1x1=1”.  The Trinity is like ice to water to vapor, but they are all H2O.  Also there is, the egg is a shell, whites, and the yo…

Believe It!

Father Gabriel has a nice voice.  I'm not talking about his melodious singing voice, either.  His normal, regular voice is smoothing, kind, and oh, so gentle.  He's what I picture as the quintessence of what a monk should be (Fr. AQ, excepted since he's my Spiritual Director).   Anyway, the way he read the Gospel this morning traveled that long road from my head to my heart.  John 20: 24-29.


Have you come to believe because you have seen me?  Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.


Of course, I knew that.  I did.  Didn't I?  Then why did it suddenly make me smile and be proud.  He's talking about me.  I haven't seen Christ, yet I believe--most of the time.  Today, I do.

My thoughts were confirmed by Pope St. Gregory the Great's Homily ( Hom. 26, 7-9: PL 76, 1201-1202).
Do you really believe that it was by chance that this chosen disciple (Thomas) was absent, then came and heard, heard and doubted, doubted and touched, touched and believed?  It…

Happy Fourth of July