Call No One Father

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for March 18th, 2014
Tuesday of the Second Week of Lent

St. Cyril of Jerusalem

Liturgical texts here

 

 

“SO why do you Catholics call priests “Fr.” when Jesus expressly forbids it?” That’s the question I am frequently asked when discussing Catholic beliefs with evangelical Christians.

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The Fundamental Problem

St. Peter who was given “the keys of the kingdom “
 

 

I HAVE received a number of emails, some from Catholics who aren’t sure how to answer their “evangelical” family members, and others from fundamentalists who are certain the Catholic Church is neither biblical nor Christian. Several letters contained long explanations why they feel this Scripture means this and why they think this quote means that. After reading these letters, and considering the hours it would take to respond to them, I thought I would address instead the fundamental problem: just who exactly has the authority to interpret Scripture?

 

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How the Era was Lost

 

THE future hope of an “era of peace” based on the “thousand years” that follow the death of Antichrist, according to the the book of Revelation, may sound like a new concept to some readers. To others, it is considered a heresy. But it is neither. The fact is, the eschatological hope of a “period” of peace and justice, of a “Sabbath rest” for the Church before the end of time, does have its basis in Sacred Tradition. In reality, it has been somewhat buried in centuries of misinterpretation, unwarranted attacks, and speculative theology that continues to this day. In this writing, we look at the question of exactly how “the era was lost”—a bit of a soap opera in itself—and other questions such as whether it is literally a “thousand years,” whether Christ will be visibly present at that time, and what we can expect. Why is this important? Because it not only confirms a future hope that the Blessed Mother announced as imminent at Fatima, but of events that must take place at the end of this age that will change the world forever… events that appear to be on the very threshold of our times. 

 

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The Coming Revelation of the Father

 

ONE of the great graces of the Illumination is going to be the revelation of the Father’s love. For the great crisis of our time—the destruction of the family unit—is the loss of our identity as sons and daughters of God:

The crisis of fatherhood we are living today is an element, perhaps the most important, threatening man in his humanity. The dissolution of fatherhood and motherhood is linked to the dissolution of our being sons and daughters.  —POPE BENEDICT XVI (Cardinal Ratzinger), Palermo, March 15th, 2000 

At Paray-le-Monial, France, during the Sacred Heart Congress, I sensed the Lord saying that this moment of the prodigal son, the moment of the Father of Mercies is coming. Even though mystics speak of the Illumination as a moment of seeing the crucified Lamb or an illuminated cross, [1]cf. Revelation Illumination Jesus will reveal to us the Father’s love:

He who sees me sees the Father. (John 14:9)

It is “God, who is rich in mercy” whom Jesus Christ has revealed to us as Father: it is His very Son who, in Himself, has manifested Him and made Him known to us… It is especially for[sinners] that the Messiah becomes a particularly clear sign of God who is love, a sign of the Father. In this visible sign the people of our own time, just like the people then, can see the Father. —BLESSED JOHN PAUL II, Dives in misercordia, n. 1

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