Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Pretend you are a Saint....

When confronted with anything difficult, whether it is a temptation or a circumstance that you find yourself in and do not know exactly how to respond, then take this advice from a priest: "Pretend you are a Saint". Yes, at that very moment, shift gears in your head and pretend you are a saint, like St. Teresa of Lisieux or st. Francis of Assi, and act the way that saint would have in that situation. What? You don't know how they would have responded? Read about their lives then...have your children read about the lives of the saints so they know who to emulate and what to do. I found this fascinating penny catechism and thought it would be a great place to start with training your children: remember, your children need to know, every day, what God expects of them. "Train up a child in the way that he should go and.... he will never depart from it, Proverbs 22:6
go here for penny catechism: http://www.proecclesia.com/penny%20catechism/index.htm

Monday, October 20, 2014

Did John write the gospel of John?

Last Saturday at evening Mass one of the priests in his homily stated that John, the beloved disciple of Christ, did not in fact write the gospel of John. What?! I had never heard of this before so naturally, not only was I annoyed, but my interest was piqued. Why do people that are suppose to be knowledgeable make emphatic statements that are at the very most suppositions or perhaps "best guesses" of "modern experts" that they have heard or read about? It's irritating, annoying, and at the very least spreads confusion among the common people.
So, I went hunting for what the Catholic Church, in all her wisdom, teaches about this and found, not to my surprise, that John wrote the gospel of John. Here is an excerpt from Mark P. Shea, Catholic writer found on www.catholic.com:
The facts are these: The Tradition of the Church, supported by the unbroken line of patristic testimony, as well as internal evidence from the text itself, is that the Gospel is rooted in the testimony of the apostle John, son of Zebedee. Numerous other witnesses in the second and third centuries corroborate St. Irenaeus’s testimony. In addition, various elements within the Gospel strongly suggest John as the author. Most obviously, there is the attestation of the witnesses penning the Gospel that it is the testimony of "the disciple whom Jesus loved" (John 21:20)—a disciple to whom no one but John corresponds. The source of the Gospel is, quite clearly, a Jew familiar with the conditions of Palestinian Judaism at the time of Christ. He speaks Aramaic and Greek. He knows Jerusalem as it looked before Rome reduced it to rubble in A.D. 70. And he gives countless details which, if they are not the testimony of a first-hand eyewitness who was present at the Last Supper, are a singular occurrence of novelistic realism 19 centuries ahead of its time. That he was part of Christ’s "inner circle" of Peter, James, and John (cf. Gal. 2:9) is even more likely given that he was the disciple at the Last Supper who laid his head on Christ’s breast. He can’t be Peter, who is distinguished from him in the text, and he can’t be James (who died in the early 40s). So it all points to John. Additionally, the patristic tradition that the Gospel was composed in Ephesus also points to John. First, this is the city associated with the Assumption of the Virgin who was commended into his care. Second, the Gospel repeatedly answers a sect devoted to John the Baptist with the reply that John "was not the light" but had only come to "bear witness to the light" (John 1:8). We know from Acts 18:24 and 19:1-7 that there was such a sect centered in Ephesus. Finally, the sophistication of the Gospel fits the fact that the New Testament epistle with the most sophisticated exposition of theology is Ephesians.

So all the evidence points to the accuracy of the Church’s tradition that John published his Gospel in Ephesus in the second half of the first century.

There is more-- but, you'll have to go to the weblink to read it, and it is worth reading: http://www.catholic.com/magazine/articles/did-john-write-his-gospel
Another issue, just as problematic, is should I talk to this priest about teaching controversial and erroneous things from the pulpit? or should I just forget about it? I don't know.

Friday, October 17, 2014

St. Francis spoke to the Sultan


St. Francis was a man of action. He took a trip to Damietta, Egypt in 1219, during the Fifth Crusade to either convert the (Muslim) Sultan, Malik al-Kamil, to Christ or be martyred trying. He, along with his traveling companion Brother Illuminato, were dispatched by Pope Honorius IV in 1219. According to his biographer, his intention was to convert the Sultan, not have an "open" and congenial discussion. After Francis and Illuminato had been captured, threatened with decapitation, and then led into the presence of the sultan, he promptly asked Francis if he wished to become a Saracen (Muslim). Francis responded he did not come to convert to the religion of Mohammed, but instead had come to present the sultan’s soul to God on behalf of Christ. After consulting with his advisers, it was determined that the brothers were to be beheaded according to their law. However, because the Sultan liked St. Francis he gave him his freedom and had his guards escort him back to the Christian camp. He offered St. Francis gold, silver, and precious cloth, but he refused it all saying that the only precious thing he could have taken to God was the Sultan's soul.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Giving it up!

I love it that this blogger wrote about giving up for the love and friendship to God the popular cultural phrase "OMG". Here is the link:
http://www.blossomingjoy.com/blog/stopomg

Try this instead...

Blessed be God.
Blessed be His Holy Name.
Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true Man.
Blessed be the Name of Jesus.
Blessed be His Most Sacred Heart.
Blessed be His Most Precious Blood.
Blessed be Jesus in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar.
Blessed be the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete.
Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most Holy.
Blessed be her Holy and Immaculate Conception.
Blessed be her Glorious Assumption.
Blessed be the name of Mary, Virgin and Mother.
Blessed be St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse.
Blessed be God in His Angels and in His Saints.

Amen.

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