Tag Archives: Roman Catholic

Around Italy In Quarantine

Pope Francis leads Benediction outside Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome

“Yesterday in Italy the military flew over some areas affected by the Coronavirus with the Blessed Sacrament and an image of the Virgin of Fatima!”

“A great priest who never ceases to be present with his parish community. Thanks Father Ricotta”

 

 

Did you know the word “quarantine” was taken from the Italian quaranta giorni, meaning “forty days”? Penance & Lent

ALSO – Pope urges priests to bring Eucharist to sick during Italy coronavirus quarantine

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Little Faith

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This morning, I sat in with second graders about to make their First Holy Communion through our RCIA classes. The children were learning about the Mass, but also covered a little section in their books on how our Lord spoke in parables. The kingdom of heaven is like…

A mustard seed..

As the children listened to the teacher ask about the mustard seed, they answered her questions. I sat watching them pondering these little ones sitting in their chairs, waiting to sprout and grow.  They all were playing with their pencils, looking around, getting distracted as normal children do. Nothing I could see in them regarding our faith was freely being applied right now, because they were like tiny little furrows who were placed in a row, as the seeds of faith were being planted.

As one child held his pencil, I looked at his blank paper in front of him and was able to see how nothing is accomplished if we do not put our faith to work. We can read the bible, we can study scripture, we can even sit in RCIA forever learning but if we do not follow our Lords direction and apply it, its just words to us and not the Word. If we truly believe, we act on that faith. If we do not act on His word, we remain a simple seed which sprouts and quickly dies producing no fruit.

A pencil must be put to paper with effort on our part for its purpose to be revealed. One can say that they want to be an artist, but if they never draw, or sculpture or paint, or even try, simply saying I want to be an artist, needs actions on our part to be one. If I say I want to go to heaven, but I do not do what our Lord has asked of us, to follow Him, and go off in my own way and follow my own feelings and do what ever I want, what shall that get me? False hope comes to mind.

Little faith requires much action on our part. It must be regularly watered and nourished by practicing THE faith or we lose it completely and follow our own directions, creating our own gods who we worship instead, inventing our own faith, creating false hopes in our own powers.  We must attend Mass, we must regularly attend the sacrament of confession, we must pray, we must fast, we must produce good works and keep producing them even in the little things so the weeds of sin and selfishness that are also planted along side by the world in which we live, do not strangle the faith growing within us. Applying this faith not just on Sunday, but every day, in every way in all our actions. In this way we are living the faith in Word and Deed, in our speech and actions.

It was a beautiful morning with these little ones. I can’t wait to see what our Lord teaches me through them next week. Please pray for these children and their family’s, that the faith they are learning, is nurtured by family who live the faith with them, as role models for them, that it may sprout, grow strong and produce good fruit for the next generation.

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One Body

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If you find yourself looking for a particular “camp” inside the Catholic church, be it left, right, trad, liberal, it is only because you are in the “wrong someplace” within yourself and can not stand ALONE with our Lord. It is you and Him. No one else to grab out for. No one else to blame. No one else but yourself and Him. His tent.

ONE Body in Christ. I am Roman Catholic. Some say I am not Catholic enough. Some say I am way too Catholic. The only thing that matters, is our Lord calls me by name to Him and I listen to Him, following Him.

I was lost, now I am found.

“If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.”

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You’re Embarrassing Me!

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Jesus. Get off the cross. You’re embarrassing me!

A friend of mine lived in the country. He had kids and they were growing up and one of his daughters got involved in ranching. Raising cattle. She was just getting started in this work and she was put in charge of moving a herd of cattle.
She asked her father to help because he was an experienced rider and he was also a veterinarian. And he was her Dad.

Moving the herd happened in the dark of night, just before dawn. A dozen or so riders had instructions from this young woman and the move began. They walked or trotted their horses by the edge of the herd to keep them together and going at a speed they could control.

My friend’s horse was trotting along fine, then tripped and flung my friend down a slope onto his back. He called out for help and a couple of riders came by. He was trying to tell if he was hurt, and his daughter rode up.

She leaned down from her horse and scolded him in a whisper. “Dad. Get up. You’re embarrassing me!”

I love that story. That girl had so much on her mind and wanted this job to go well so badly that when her father got thrown from his horse she could only think about how it would affect the job.

When St Peter heard Jesus say that He would be killed for what He was doing, Peter said, “No!”. In one way Peter said, “Be quiet, Jesus, You’re embarrassing me.” Peter was saying “I want things to go this way: more success, bigger crowds. Don’t talk of failure.”

What do we do when things go wrong? What do we do when there’s pain? How about when suffering goes from short term to long term? God wants us to deal with suffering. It’s a part of life. When we think we can control our lives, we make sure suffering is not part of it. Suffering makes us look bad. It ruins our image. It feels awful.

What do we do?

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross was a psychologist who worked with dying people. She came up with an understanding of how people cope with having an illness that will probably end in death. Death is the biggest way of all that things go wrong. Most of us see it as the worst thing that will happen. The biggest embarrassment.

There are five stages people go through when things go terribly wrong. To keep this short, I will say only the first and the last. The first is denial. “No! This is not happening!” The last one is acceptance. As Jesus put it, “Not My will, Father, but Yours be done.”

Any time things go wrong we can bet our first reaction is “No!”. If we are believers, if we pray, and ask for help, that begins to change. We’ll get to “Your will, not mine be done.”

There’s a reason to accept suffering, any kind. Some day we’ll have to accept death. In the mean time we have to accept things like where we were born, how we were treated as children, what we look like, the traffic is, our jobs, our health, you name it.

What do we see when we look in the mirror? Do we see our failures? Blemishes? The ways we’re not good enough?

What do we feel when we enter a room full of people? Unworthy? That we have to hide who we are or what we did? That our jobs aren’t good enough or our kids aren’t bright enough or our bank accounts aren’t big enough?

If we feel that kind of embarrassment about ourselves, we try to hide. Or we look for something to cover it. Some pleasure. Some fantasy. We drink, we spend, we judge others. Anything to make us feel less embarrassed about who we are.

These things that deny the pain, that distract or cover over our unhappiness actually do work. The world is filled with ways of denying reality. They do take away the pain.

What they don’t do — what they cannot do — is heal us. Denial never heals. Never. It only conceals.

God wants healing for us. Healing comes with acceptance. Healing comes when we accept reality as it is, not as we’d like it to be. As soon as I can accept my life as it is, I find freedom. The things I was afraid of lose power.

We all can spend a lot of time and energy covering up our embarrassment. We hope people will like us, and include us and respect us.

Hasn’t that been what some people in the Church did when the sins of priests were reported? Deny. Hide. Don’t families do the same with the things they don’t want known? Businesses? Yup. Everybody does it.

There’s a saying in Italian: “bella figura”. It means “beautiful face”. When we put the preservation of the beautiful face above the truth, we lie. We deny. “Dad, you’re embarrassing me.”

There was nothing beautiful about Jesus on the cross. Nothing. Horrible to look at. Horrible, but three days later, He rose. He filled the world with glory. It’s the glory that comes from acceptance. From trust and honesty.

When we face reality instead of denying it, we pass through suffering into freedom. At first the truth embarrasses us. Then it sets us free.

Via Fr. Bill Murphy

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Novena For Healing The Church

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Please, just stop and pray.

Via St. Mary of the Lake – Please click HERE to join!

Mundelein Seminary at the University of Saint Mary of the Lake is launching a nine-day Novena for the Healing of Our Church from Friday, Sept. 7 through Saturday, Sept. 15 to unite Catholics in prayer for healing, justice and hope in light of the ongoing crisis within the Catholic Church.

The public is invited to attend nine special Masses to be held at parishes throughout the Archdiocese of Chicago. You can also participate digitally by filling out the form below to receive the novena prayers via email.

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Peace

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Yesterday

The Fruit Of Righteous Anger

Today

Silence is Christ’s response to lies, divisiveness, pope says at Mass

Always

The pope, sex abuse, and the story no one is talking about

In Christ Jesus, our LORD

Please, in your charity, also read:

A Carmelite Response

 

 

 

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Pure JOY Through Suffering

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The 21’st of September, 1996, was the day I realized I was about to lose my dad to lung cancer, and he entered eternal life on the feast of St. Padre Pio, two days later. It was the day I would come to realized, I was adopted by our Lord. Suffering brings JOY.

At his side, on his bed, I said out loud, I need to change my life. The life I was living, to quote our Holy Father, was “kaka”.

Anyway, someone had posted this tweet and it stirred in me. I remember. I remember it well. From death, to new life. Today, I sing.

Notice the picture in this post: A Leopard In The Well and reflect on what our LORD has done.

Repent and believe

Ephesians 2 

St. Padre Pio, pray for us.

The song? The song? “September” is a song by the American band Earth, Wind & Fire. It was recorded during the sessions for their album I Am

“Do you remember
The 21st night of September?
Love was changin’ the minds of pretenders
While chasin’ the clouds away
Our hearts were ringin’
In the key that our souls were singin’
As we danced in the night, remember
How the stars stole the night away, oh, yeah yeah yeah”

 

St. Matthew Prayer

O Glorious St. Matthew, in your Gospel you portray Jesus as the longed-for Messiah who fulfilled the Prophets of the Old Covenant and as the new Lawgiver who founded a Church of the New Covenant.
Obtain for us the grace to see Jesus living in his Church and to follow his teachings in our lives on earth so that we may live forever with him in heaven.

Edit to add:

As I was heading to bed just now, I heard music coming from outside… Someone finally gets it… The echo of September, somehow, somewhere. Thank you Lord.

 

 

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