For a 1950s TV Evangelist, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, a Step Toward Sainthood.

For Archbishop’s Sheen’s admirers, the announcement came as an official stamp of approval that meant Archbishop Sheen’s life was worthy of emulation.

“He is the patron saint of media and evangelization,” said the Rev. Robert Barron, whose Illinois-based ministry, Word on Fire, seeks to spread the Gospel through television and the Internet. And the Rev. James Martin, a Jesuit priest who often appears on television, said:  “Sainthood has come to the media age. In another couple of years we will have the first Twitter or Facebook saint.”

Archbishop Sheen brought Catholicism into the living rooms of Catholics, Protestants and people of other faiths at a time when anti-Catholic sentiment was still common in the United States. Wearing his full clerical garb, with scarlet cap and robe, he preached and offered simple lessons, like the importance of laughing at oneself. Signing off at the end of his show, “Life Is Worth Living,” he often raised his hands above his head with a performer’s pizazz.

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Michael Voris “brags” about the “Coolness” of Catholicism

Truth is .. Catholicism always has been cool.

We built western civilization .. the only thing that relativists, socialists and atheists ever built was guillotines and death camps.

Our problem of late it just that many of us have been asleep for a while .. not really minding or paying attention to the candy store.

And while many of us were sleeping .. losers sneaked past and somehow claimed the mantle of cool.

Well .. if you think broken homes, shattered childhoods, self-esteem rooted in lies, cheating spouses, objectification of women, the death of masculinity, the ascendancy of lesbian-centered feminism, the glorification of mothers murdering their children, the nightmare of addictions .. and every other such social evil is cool .. then you need to hit the road Jack.

What’s so cool about a mounting toll of human physical, emotional and psychological carnage,?

So why is Catholic so cool? Because it makes you a man .. it makes you able to stand on your own two feet. While all these social losers tear you down .. they are actually jealous of you and what you have.

Watch the short video

Reader Paul comments on JPII beatification and papal Mass article

I am writing just to congratulate you on the very good review you gave on John Paul’s Mass in Chicago, re:

All criticisms aside, you can’t help loving John Paul II. I figure God does, too! of 2nd May weblog

I am always seeing red when I see some supposedly intelligent Catholics pour scorn on the person of John Paul. It seems to me in passing that they lack common charity and for all their intellectual rumblings they present a mean minded lord as fit for devotion by a very few elite.

I recall back in 2005 and it was Wednesday of that Easter week when I complained to God that I did not understand why he had not taken him at Easter? Like a slap in the face, I was immediately pulled up on where in the week I was and recall saying out loud at this realization “Oh. . My God . .”

I knew at once that Jesus had done one last act of his divine will in wanting to take the Holy father on his feast of The Divine Mercy . .with all its promises revealed. I believe his cardinals and especially Pope Benedict understood the significance of dates and what Jesus was doing for John Paul. If I am correct and I believe here I am, then His Holiness Benedict 16th well knows the eternal fate of his old friend and mentor. It is not surprising that he has backed a fast track of grace for the memory of his predecessor. We should always recall that The Catholic Church does NOT make saints, only God can do that . .but the Church sometimes is allowed to Recognise a saint by their life and heroic virtues etc or by the revelation of Jesus.

As for the poor in charity that suggest John Paul did not speak out against this or that corruption within the church their arguments are not logical.

We pray for both what we do and what we fail to do but lack of condemnation cannot logically be assessed as agreement. Otherwise these same claimants will surely argue that Our lord does not condemn some of the wrongs of his day for example the sermon on the mount makes no perception on slavery or the economic abuses of social structure of the day. Indeed Our Lord rather backs these economic structures by suggesting that we should render to Caesar what is Caesars . To suggest that this means he cared little or is responsible for the abuse of such structures is clearly absurd and borders on grave sin. We are not allowed to express a view that is harmful or leading to a character assassination of the living or the dead. As Christians such acts are reprehensible and belong to the works of Satan not Christ.

My argument against these supposed catholic thinkers with ideas above their station is that they should always and at all moments remember Love and act accordingly. Salvation is not guaranteed to any of us but it is impossible without love. If we recall the love of Jesus and his followers then we should be inspired to pick up our cross and follow Christ. It is not simply poetical license it is a command from love itself and we must respond.

If the Now Blessed John Paul is in heaven, he is a saint. If Jesus and his divine mercy wish us to follow him then we can be assured that his saints are there to help us and not trip us up or sneer at our weaknesses. As Catholics through out the ages have known, The Communion of Saints means that these individuals in Heaven, in Eternal Glory are our hope and friends. To harden our hearts to Gods Justice, Mercy and Will by turning from The Church or these Holy icons is less than sad. Our personal and eternal salvation are greatly assisted by these saints and by the Holy Catholic Church. What is required of us is a conversion from sin to grace, a child-like acceptance of Gods wonders and an opening to Love that reveals grace in everything we do.

John Paul had human weakness because he was a human but we are not called upon to expose errors nor cast stones because we expect our selves to be so pure in heart. We are called to celebrate the Goodness of this great man and whether we like it or not, to respond to Gods call to Love and accept his Divine Mercy.

Fr. Z explains Heroic Virtue

We live in this fallen world, in this vale of tears, with wounds to our intellects and will, constantly dealing with the world, the flesh and the devil.

We are called to holiness.  We are actually called to holiness in a heroic degree.  Let’s understand “heroic” properly.

The “heroism” to which we are called does not consist mainly in great or famous or dramatic acts or accomplishments.  It might include those, but it does not mainly consist of those.  Every person has the possibility of this sort of heroism, even if he does nothing spectacular.  When it comes to the causes of saints, very often people with more dramatic or famous lives comes to the attention of others, and therefore they are more likely to be the subjects of causes.

Living a virtuous life even in the tedium of routine or the obscurity of everyday living can be heroic.

Accepting God’s will, living in conformity with God’s will is the true test of a Christian.  That is the essence of “heroic” virtue, not what appears outwardly to be heroic (though that may also be heroic, as in the dramatic case of the martyr).

Furthermore, people don’t, except by a rare gift from God, instantly or easily attain the state of living a life of virtue heroically.  Virtues are habits.  Some virtues, the theological virtues, are infused into us by God with baptism and sacraments.  They “dwell” in us “habitually” (“dwell” and “habit” are etymologically related… think of a “habitat” where critters “dwell”).  Virtues are habits, good practices and attitudes which are in us to a degree that it is easy for us to do them rather than hard.  This usually takes time and maturity.  We don’t suddenly, except by a special grace, become virtuous.  It can take a whole lifetime and many stumbles along the way.

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NOTE CONCERNING VATICAN DECREE ON THE HEROIC VIRTUES OF PIUS XII

VATICAN CITY, 23 DEC 2009 (VIS) – Holy See Press Office Director Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J. today issued the following note concerning the signing of the recent decree on the heroic virtues of Servant of God Pope Pius XII.

“The Pope’s signing of the decree ‘on the heroic virtues’ of Pius XII has elicited a certain number of reactions in the Jewish world; perhaps because the meaning of such a signature is clear in the area of the Catholic Church and of specialists in the field, but may merit certain explanation for the larger public, in particular the Jewish public who are understandably very sensitive to all things concerning the historical period of World War II and the Holocaust.

“When the Pope signs a decree ‘on the heroic virtues’ of a Servant of God – i.e., of a person for whom a cause for beatification has been introduced – he confirms the positive evaluation already voted by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. … Naturally, such evaluation takes account of the circumstances in which the person lived, and hence it is necessary to examine the question from a historical standpoint, but the evaluation essentially concerns the witness of Christian life that the person showed (his intense relationship with God and continuous search for evangelical perfection) … and not the historical impact of all his operative decisions”.

“At the beatification of Pope John XXIII and of Pope Pius IX, John Paul II said: ‘holiness lives in history and no saint has escaped the limits and conditioning which are part of our human nature. In beatifying one of her sons, the Church does not celebrate the specific historical decisions he may have made, but rather points to him as someone to be imitated and venerated because of his virtues, in praise of the divine grace which shines resplendently in them’.

“There is, then, no intention in any way to limit discussion concerning the concrete choices made by Pius XII in the situation in which he lived. For her part, the Church affirms that these choices were made with the pure intention of carrying out the Pontiff’s service of exalted and dramatic responsibility to the best of his abilities. In any case, Pius XII’s attention to and concern for the fate of the Jews – something which is certainly relevant in the evaluation of his virtues – are widely testified and recognised, also by many Jews.

“The field for research and evaluation by historians, working in their specific area, thus remains open, also for the future. In this specific case it is comprehensible that there should be a request to have open access to all possibilities of research on the documents. … Yet for the complete opening of the archives – as has been said on a number of occasions in the past – it is necessary to organise and catalogue an enormous mass of documentation, something which still requires a number of years’ work.

“As for the fact that the decree on the heroic virtues of Pope John Paul II and Pope Pius XII were promulgated on the same day, this does not mean that from now on the two causes will be ‘paired’. They are completely independent of one another and each will follow its own course. There is, then, no reason to imagine that any future beatification will take place together”.

“It is, then, clear that the recent signing of the decree is in no way to be read as a hostile act towards the Jewish people, and it is to be hoped that it will not be considered as an obstacle on the path of dialogue between Judaism and the Catholic Church. Rather we trust that the Pope’s forthcoming visit to the Synagogue of Rome will be an opportunity for the cordial reiteration and reinforcement of ties of friendship and respect”.
OP/DECREE PIUS XII/LOMBARDIVIS 091223 (660)

Heroic Virtue: The Essence of Holiness and a fruit of God’s Grace

 Crucifixion of St. Peter

petercrucfd

Excerpts from the recent remarks of Archbishop Angelo Amato about heroic virtue and the holiness of the Saints:

The original source of the holiness of the Church (and holiness in the Church) is the Triune God.

Heroic virtue is recognizable, first of all, by its frequency, its promptness, the joyful character of virtuous activity; and secondly, by the fact that amidst complicated obstacles, formed by external or internal circumstances, these are overcome in such a way that the virtuous hero can be considered capable of great sacrifices for the Gospel in the total abnegation of self.

In heroic virtue, Christ becomes visible again in our midst and the saint becomes the mirror of Christ. The saints, moreover, are true operators of the enculturation of the Gospel, not through theories elaborated at a desk, but rather by living and manifesting the sequela Christi (the following of Christ) in their own culture.

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Additional details:

Holiness is something we have in Christ. Without Jesus Christ, it would be impossible for anyone to be holy, to do anything meritorious (in the eyes of God) or to attain Heaven.

The purpose of every Catholic Sacrament, each of the seven instituted personally by Jesus Christ, is to freely and abundantly dispense the supernatural grace that has the divine power to transform, and to make us holy.

The Catholic Church, also personally instituted by Jesus Christ, remains the universal sacrament of salvation in the world, not because of anything we do, but according to what God has already done for us. In perfect union with God, the Catholic Church is inseparable from Jesus, who is “The Way, the Truth, and the Life”.

Receiving the sacraments while refusing to do the work which they (in Christ) empower (and inspire) is being no different than the wicked, lazy, and foolish servant who buried his talent in the ground, reaping nothing but wrath and perdition, for his reward.

Hence, the true path to holiness in Christ can always be found through our constant, faithful and charitable participation in all of the authentic work, worship, sacraments and devotions of the Catholic Church.

There is no other way.