Images and significance of various types of trees, as mentioned in the Bible


The sycamore, the “ficus sycomorus,” belongs to the same family of the fig tree. Its name comes from the Greek “sicon,” fig and “moros,” blackberry bush. That is, the sycamore has leaves similar to the blackberry bush and fruit similar to the fig. In Jesus’ time there were a great number of sycamores in the Holy Land. Its wood was commonly used because it is harder than that of the fig tree. Today, it is a rare tree in the Holy Land. We can find sycamores in Jericho and in Gaza. One of them in Jericho is 15 meters high. Let us remember that the fig tree is never higher than 5 meters.

During the time of King Solomon, “the king made silver common as pebbles, and cedars plentiful as the sycamores of the lowlands” (I Kgs. 10:27).

The fruit of the sycamore was considered as humble food. It is confirmed by the prophet Amos, shepherd of Tekoa: I was no prophet, neither did I belong to any of the brotherhoods of prophets. I was a shepherd, and looked after sycamores: but it was Yahweh who took me from herding the flock, and Yahweh who said, “Go, prophesy to My people Israel’ (Amos 7:14-15).

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“Rough Justice”: Alleged abuse victim arrested in priest’s beating.

“Many times I thought of driving down to LA and confronting Father Jerry. I wanted to exorcise all of the rage and anger and bitterness he put into me,” Lynch told the newspaper. “You can’t put into words what this guy did to me. He stole my innocence and destroyed my life.”

The Associated Press does not identify victims of sex crimes as a matter of policy, but Lynch previously came forward to tell his story.

There have been several other instances of violence, sometimes fatal, against priests accused of abuse since the Roman Catholic clergy abuse scandal unfolded in 2002.

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Please check the home page for All Saints/All Souls Day Resources which may not be included in the regular daily summary.

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Deer hunters take note: St. Hubert is on your side!

Buy the above sign at Right On The Walls – Masculine Decor

In the late 600s A.D., a “party boy” named Hubert had given himself to the vanities of life, and was obsessed with hunting. Once, he chose to pursue his sport on Good Friday, “a real no-no in that time,” and received an unexpected wake-up call from above.

During his hunt that morning, a vision of the crucifix appeared to Hubert between the antlers of a great stag. Through the creature, God spoke to him and said, “Hubert, if you don’t get your act together, you’re going to hell.”Hubert got his act together and is now St. Hubert, patron saint of hunters.

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Catholic bishops place conditions on CCHD anti-poverty grants … but things are not that simple.


The nation’s Roman Catholic bishops have spelled out requirements that groups receiving church anti-poverty grants must conform to its teachings in areas such as abortion and same-sex marriage.

The new guidelines come months after a Louisville anti-poverty group and at least five others nationwide lost funding amid disputes over whether they or their coalition partners have opposed church teachings.

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Editor’s note:

If the reforms at the USCCB and the CCHD are truly authentic, we’ll know in a year or two (or four). But for now, the wolves are still guarding the hen house.

Talk is cheap, and the USCCB and CCHD have always talked up a storm.

I suggest you respectfully “sit-out” this year’s Thanksgiving week CCHD collection … and donate instead to a proven worthy cause that has not been the source of such extensive, long-term, and largely secret, scandal.

Otherwise, your hard-earned money might still end up promoting abortion, homosexual marriage, and only God knows what else!

Pro-Israel writers almost get it right … but leave mistaken impression about Judaism that isn’t quite Kosher.


…the relationship between the Jewish people and God is one that commonly elicits strong (and divergent) reactions. But what does the Church have to say about this relationship? In particular, are the Jewish people still “chosen,” maintaining a special relationship with God? And, if so, does this therefore mean that they are already in a salvific covenant with him such that they have no need of Christ and his Church?

Read the article

Editor’s note:

First of all, today’s Jews (and Judaism) have no central governing authority, and no comprehensive, systematic, universal  theology, doctrine, or creed. Most cannot even agree on which portions of sacred scripture they choose to affirm … or deny.

This means that, Chosen People or not … many, many Jews are on the wrong side of things when it comes to routine matters of natural law and the Christian faith in general, and that means they are almost totally at odds with the authentic teachings and principles of Catholicism.

It also means that Jews no longer fit the conventional (and erroneous) stereotype that many Christians have in mind … and they haven’t, for almost 2000 years.

In short, Catholics must be very careful when it comes to routinely supporting those who they perceive to be “the Jews” … and/or Israel … since proper identification of the “Chosen People” is (and always has been) very problematic.

Revelation 2:9  I know thy tribulation and thy poverty: but thou art rich. And thou art blasphemed by them that say they are Jews and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.

The key point is that today’s authentic People of God … those “marked for salvation” and presently living under a truly salvific covenant, thanks to Jesus Christ … are Christians. Not the “Chosen People” of Israel.

The most sensitive and practical thing a Christian can do for any non-Christian is to try to clearly make that point, in a respectful, loving, and non-discriminating way.

Unfortunately, many liberal, “Jews don’t need to be evangelized” post-Vatican II Catholic church hierarchs have failed to properly preach and teach this essential truth, to the continuing detriment of Jew and Gentile, alike.

Click here for a more detailed and scholarly response (PDF file)

Know-nothing article touts faulty USCCB voting guidance. Attempts to confuse and water down the truth.

Here’s a few clues:

Burke is right on Catholic policy and he also rightly understands that the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is wrong. Plus … the USCCB has absolutely no canonical authority of its own, in this matter. Only individual bishops have the authority to govern their own diocese.

McCarrick and Wuerl might be right on USCCB policy, but they (and the majority of the USCCB) are are wrong when it comes to articulating authentic Catholic principles, on these matters.

The National Catholic Reporter (NCR) is a liberal Catholic publication that cannot be trusted (as opposed to the National Catholic Register, which usually can.)

Now … read the article.