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Archive for July, 2016

The Great Context

clarawithgrandpaMy first grandchild, Clara Marian, born July 27th, 2016

 

IT was a long labor, but at last the ping of a text broke the silence. “It’s a girl!” And with that the long wait, and all the tension and worry that accompanies child birth, was over. My first grandchild was born.

My sons (the uncles) and I stood in the waiting room of the hospital as the nurses wrapped up their duties. In the room next to us, we could hear the wailing and cries of another mother in the throws of hard labor. “It hurts!” she exclaimed. “Why isn’t it coming out??” The young mother was in complete distress, her voice ringing with desperation. Then at last, after several more cries and groans, the sound of new life filled the corridor. Suddenly, all the pain of the previous moment evaporated… and I thought of the Gospel of St. John:

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE GREAT TRIALS | on July 28th, 2016 | No Comments »

Love Waits

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for Monday, July 25th, 2016
Feast of St. James

Liturgical texts here

magdalene tomb

 

Love waits. When we truly love someone, or some thing, we will wait for the object of our love. But when it comes to God, to waiting for His grace, His help, His peace… for Him… most of us do not wait. We take matters into our own hands, or we despair, or become angry and impatient, or we begin to medicate our internal pain and anxiety with busyness, noise, food, alcohol, shopping… and yet, it never lasts because there is only one medication for the human heart, and that is the Lord for whom we are made.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, MASS READINGS, SPIRITUALITY | on July 25th, 2016 | No Comments »

Interpreting Revelation

 

 

WITHOUT a doubt, the Book of Revelation is one of the most controversial in all of Sacred Scripture. On one end of the spectrum are fundamentalists who take every word literally or out of context. On the other are those who believe the book has already been fulfilled in the first century or who ascribe to the book a merely allegorical interpretation.

But what about future times, our times? Does Revelation have anything to say? Unfortunately, there is a modern tendency among many clergy and theologians to relegate discussion of the prophetic aspects of the Apocalypse to the loony bin, or simply dismiss the notion of comparing our times to these prophecies as dangerous, too difficult, or altogether misguided.

There’s only one problem with that stance, however. It flies in the face of the living Tradition of the Catholic Church and the very words of the Magisterium itself.

 

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, FAITH AND MORALS | on July 21st, 2016 | 3 Comments »

The Christian Martyr-Witness

saint-stephen-the-martyrSt. Stephen the Martyr, Bernardo Cavallino (d. 1656)

 

I am at the beginning of hay season for the next week or so, which leaves me little time to write. However, this week, I have sensed Our Lady urging me to republish several writings, including this one… 

 

WRITTEN ON THE FEAST OF ST. STEPHEN THE MARTYR

 

THIS past year has seen what Pope Francis has rightly called the “brutal persecution” of Christians, particularly in Syria, Iraq, and Nigeria by Islamic jihadists. [1]cf. nbcnews.com; December 24th, Christmas Message

In light of the “red” martyrdom occurring this very minute of our brothers and sisters in the East and elsewhere, and the frequent “white” martyrdom of the faithful in the West, something beautiful is coming to light from this evil: the contrast of the witness of the Christian martyrs to that of the so-called “martyrdom” of religious extremists.

In fact, in Christianity, the word martyr means “witness”…

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1. cf. nbcnews.com; December 24th, Christmas Message
Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, FAITH AND MORALS | on July 15th, 2016 | 2 Comments »

Key to the Woman

 

Knowledge of the true Catholic doctrine regarding the Blessed Virgin Mary will always be a key to the exact understanding of the mystery of Christ and of the Church. —POPE PAUL VI, Discourse, November 21st, 1964

 

THERE is a profound key that unlocks why and how the Blessed Mother has such a sublime and powerful role in the lives of mankind, but particularly believers. Once one grasps this, not only does Mary’s role make more sense in salvation history and her presence more understood, but I believe, it will leave you wanting to reach for her hand more than ever.

The key is this: Mary is a prototype of the Church.

 

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, MARY | on July 11th, 2016 | 1 Comment »

Why Mary…?


The Madonna of the Roses (1903), by William-Adolphe Bouguereau

 

Watching Canada’s moral compass lose its needle, the American public square lose its peace, and other parts of the world lose their equilibrium as the Storm winds continue to pick up speed… the first thought on my heart this morning as a key to getting through these times is “the Rosary.” But that means nothing to someone who does not have a proper, biblical understanding of the ‘woman clothed in the sun’. After you read this, my wife and I want to give a gift to every one of our readers… Read more… »

Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, MARY | on July 8th, 2016 | 2 Comments »

That Pope Francis! Part II

cafe_priest

 

FR. Gabriel was a few minutes late for his Saturday morning brunch with Bill and Kevin. Marg Tomey had just returned from a pilgrimage to Lourdes and Fatima with a fist full of rosaries and holy medals that she wanted blessed after Mass. She came prepared with a pre-Vatican II book of blessings that included exorcism rites. “For good measure,” she said, winking at Fr. Gabriel, who was half the age of the weathered prayer-book.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE GREAT TRIALS | on July 2nd, 2016 | No Comments »

Joy in God’s Law

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for Friday, July 1st, 2016
Opt. Memorial of St. Junípero Serra

Liturgical texts here

bread1

 

MUCH has been said in this Jubilee Year of Mercy about the love and mercy of God toward all sinners. One could say that Pope Francis has really pushed the limits in “welcoming” sinners into the bosom of the Church. [1]cf. The Thin Line Between Mercy and Heresy-Part I-III As Jesus says in today’s Gospel:

Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do. Go and learn the meaning of the words, I desire mercy, not sacrifice. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.

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