The Judgment of God in History


In the era of the corona virus, everyone is talking about all sorts of things, but there are certain topics that remain forbidden, above all in the Catholic world. The primary forbidden topic is that of judgment and divine retribution in history. The fact of this censure is a good reason for us to consider the argument.

This talk by historian Robert De Mattei
should be required reading for every Catholic.
Click Here

…De Mattei argued that God sends mankind chastisements in the form of “war, plague, and famine” because of sin and to call mankind back to God. He described the infinite justice of God, and what this means, not only for individuals, but for nations. Every person faces his particular judgement at the moment of death, but there will also be a second judgement at the end of time. This will be the universal judgement at which every human action, idea, and society that has ever been “will be perfectly and clearly judged.”

Editor’s note: Catholics have real-time recourse to divine forgiveness in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, but Nations do not. Hence, individual Catholics might escape divine retribution for their sins, but Nations most likely, will not. 

Thanks to Dorothy Cummings McLean at LifeSiteNews.com

 

Today’s Question: Do you think Kobe Bryant is in Hell?


Question:
Do you think Kobe Bryant is in Hell? According to pastor Tim, Kobe Bryant is in Hell because “there’s no indication that he knew the Lord”.

Answer: Pastor Tim is wrong and he has no absolutely right to judge the disposition of anyone’s eternal soul.

For the record, Kobe had repented of his old ways and was a fervent, practicing Catholic.

God is known to cut practicing Catholics a whole lot of “slack” – especially at or near the time of their death – no matter how sudden or unexpected the event.

Let’s just leave it at that!

Asked and answered today on Yahoo! Answers. Edited for content and clarity.

Father Z opines over today’s apparent lack of belief in God and the Church – and the reality of Hell

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Christ, God, gave us the Catholic Church.  It is the Church He founded.  He gave us the sacraments as the ordinary means of salvation.  He gave His own authority to the Church to teach about faith and morals.  He gave us a visible point of reference for unity and security of knowledge for our membership in His Church: Peter and his successors and the apostles and their successors with Peter.

Knowingly reject the Church – and Peter – and the Church’s teaching and her discipline of Christ’s sacraments, and you place yourself on a path that might just land you in hell for eternity.

If nothing else from this rant gets through to readers, and this is especially my plea to priests and bishops, I beg you on my knees, I implore you: make it a habit to think about the Four Last Things at least once a day.  We are all going to die.

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Submitted by Jola S.

Understanding the how’s and why’s of the need for our salvation in Christ is essential to our understanding of the truths of the Catholic faith

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by Doug Lawrence

For why did Christ, when as yet we were weak, according to the time, die for the ungodly? For scarce for a just man will one die: yet perhaps for a good man some one would dare to die. But God commendeth his charity (love) towards us: because when as yet we were sinners according to the time. Christ died for us.

Much more therefore, being now justified by his blood, shall we be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son: much more, being reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. (Romans 5:6-10)

Life is a winner-take-all contest,
with one of only two possible outcomes:
Heaven or Hell.

Thanks to the redemptive work of Jesus Christ on the cross at Calvary, we get to freely choose sides. But it is also one of those “negative default” situations. Do nothing and you lose big –
and you may lose, forever!

That’s because – very early in man’s history – due to the deliberate, grave sin of our first parents, who pridefully teamed up with Satan the Devil, against God – the first man traded away his birthright and freedom for a lie – and all of mankind (even children and little babies) became hopelessly and permanently enslaved to Satan, sin and death.

Adam and Eve in the Garden by Michelangelo

How can that be? Children of slaves are born into slavery and so are themselves slaves, with only their slavery and Adam’s Original Sin for their inheritance. The Evil One had long ago, successfully usurped virtually everything else!

Hence, every child born of Adam, the first man – and all the children of his descendants – are born tainted by sin, and already, in a very real way, “pledged” to Satan the Devil and subject to his evil dominion of sin, death and Hell.

Without God’s powerful, awesomely creative, loving, merciful, and very timely intervention, things would have remained that way forever – dooming every human being – body and soul – to a decrepit, temporal earthly existence, followed by death – and then an eternity of supernatural bondage and unimaginable suffering, in Hell.

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In the fullness of time, God sent his only begotten son, Jesus Christ, into the world, to redeem us. Incarnate of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Jesus is a perfect and sinless man, in no way subject
to Satan, sin or death.

Having taken on human flesh, as well as a human soul,
Jesus Christ is true man. Yet Jesus never ceased to be God. 

Satan has power only over sinners.
so he had no power or authority at all
over Our Holy Lord, Jesus Christ.
(John 14:27-30)

Even though he had been warned (see Genesis 3:15) Satan plotted to do his worst, enlisting his minions to put Jesus on trial and wrongfully convict him of blasphemy and sedition, leading shortly to Jesus’ crucifixion and death, which was followed three days hence by his glorious and totally unprecedented resurrection from the dead – proving that Jesus is God, just as he claimed – and that he does indeed have power over Satan, death and Hell.

God permitted all of this, as part of his plan for our salvation:

Ye men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him, in the midst of you, as you also know: This same being delivered up, by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, you by the hands of wicked men have crucified and slain. Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the sorrows of hell, as it was impossible that he should be holden by it. (Acts 2:22-24)

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As Satan had absolutely no right to disturb so much as a hair on Jesus’ head, the crucifixion of Jesus Christ became Satan’s ultimate undoing. Satan’s earthly power and dominion was destroyed and virtually all that Satan had earlier gained by Adam’s Fall was forfeit.

Today, Satan is still permitted to wander the earth, but is allowed to recruit “fresh” minions only by default (Original Sin and concupiscence, along with the deliberate and willful rejection of the Gospel) and through the vain deceits of the world and the flesh (this should be self-explanatory). But thanks to the saving work of Jesus Christ, Satan’s time of virtually unrestrained power and near total dominion has long been officially over!

For our part, Jesus’ flawless obedience to his Father’s will – as a man – even unto death on the cross – served as the perfect atoning sacrifice for the disobedience, pride and sins of all mankind.

Through Jesus Christ, God the Father supplied what fallen mankind could not (Genesis 22:8) in order to reconcile Heaven and Earth and declare the Divine Peace.

The risen Christ also became the official new and sinless head of all mankind – offering grace, peace, reconciliation and eternal life to all who would reject Satan and his works – and swear faithful allegiance to the Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

This would typically be accomplished through the Sacrament of Baptism, which would also entail, among many other good things, full and faithful membership in the universal (Catholic) Church, which Jesus personally founded, for the purpose of our salvation –  and for the salvation of future generations, yet to come.

A word about sacraments:

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Sacraments are defined as Christ-instituted, outward signs of a certain spiritual reality: divine grace being infused directly into a human soul. Since each of the sacraments was personally instituted by Jesus Christ, each sacrament constitutes nothing less than an intimate, personal encounter with Almighty God.

For those seeking a “relationship” with God – this is the ultimate and absolute best way to do it – personally recommended by none other than our Holy Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!

There are seven sacraments – each intended to provide whatever is spiritually necessary for every faithful Catholic, at various stages of human existence. In no particular order, they are: (1) Baptism, (2) Reconciliation, (3) Holy Eucharist, (4) Confirmation, (5) Holy Orders, (6) Matrimony and (7) Anointing of the Sick.

These grace-giving sacraments are administered by the Catholic Church, which is the God-designated, primary earthly ministry of his divine grace – primarily through the work of duly ordained bishops and priests – the men who constitute the ranks of the Catholic Ministerial Priesthood.

The only exception to this is the sacrament of baptism, which can be administered by just about anyone, with due concern for proper form, matter and intention, of course.

A word about the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass:

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The Holy Mass makes present for us, in this time and this age, the one time, once for all, perfect and atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross, at Calvary.

When Jesus Christ – body, blood, soul and divinity – under the appearance of ordinary bread and wine – becomes truly present for us on the altar – we are wonderfully empowered to collectively and personally offer Jesus up to God the Father – for our sins and the sins of the whole world.

Presented with this totally acceptable, holy and spotless sacrifice, Our Father in Heaven is always pleased, so he responds in love, and all graces flow.

Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist is the source and summit of all Catholic worship – and the Holy Mass – centered on Jesus Christ – acts to constantly replenish the “well” of supernatural grace – obtained for us by the sufferings of Christ –  which is regularly poured out on behalf of sinners – much as Jesus’ precious blood was poured out for many, some twenty centuries ago, so that sins could be forgiven and the world might be redeemed and reconciled.

The next time you’re at Mass, pay particular attention the words leading up to the “Great Amen”. That’s the “sweet spot”. Of course, personally receiving Jesus Christ, in the Holy Eucharist, is also pretty sweet!

Fulfilling an ancient Bible prophecy:

For most of the last two thousand years, a Holy Mass has been celebrated for the glory of God and for the salvation of souls, in many nations, all around the world – every hour of every day – every day of every year – 24/7 & 365.

For from the rising of the sun even to the going down, my name is great among the Gentiles, and in every place there is sacrifice, and there is offered to my name a perfect offering: for my name is great among the Gentiles, saith the Lord of hosts. (Malachi 1:11)

Jesus IS the perfect and eternal sacrifice for the sins of the world. Wherever Jesus is, his atoning sacrifice is also truly present. That’s why we can truly say that the Holy Mass IS a genuine sacrifice – with Jesus Christ presiding as  perfect victim, High Priest, Savior, God and King.

If we Catholics attempted to worship God in any other way, offering a sacrifice other than Jesus Christ, our Holy Redeemer – we would probably be wasting our time – and his!  That’s why Catholics remain obligated to attend Holy Mass every Sunday – and on designated Holy Days. 

Saint Paul reminds us, in the words of Jesus Christ, that God’s grace is sufficient:

And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.

For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.

Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.  (2 Corinthians 12:7-10)

Saint Paul also reminds us:

Therefore as by the offence of one [judgment came] upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one [the free gift came] upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 5:18-21)

Forty Days after his glorious resurrection from the dead, Jesus ascended back to Heaven, where he was enthroned – body and spirit – at the right hand of God the Father – as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. (1 Tim 6:15, Rev 17:14, Rev 19:16)

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Doing so, Jesus made permanent and eternal all that he had accomplished for us during his earthly existence. There was no going back, nor could there ever be any chance of another human Fall From Grace! The battle between good and evil had been definitively won by Jesus Christ – and it was all over, except for the fighting!

O death, where [is] thy sting? O grave, where [is] thy victory? The sting of death [is] sin; and the strength of sin [is] the law. But thanks [be] to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, for as much as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. (1 Corinthians 15:55-58)

By divine mandate and through his supernatural protection, Jesus empowered his Holy Church to remain behind on earth – supernaturally preserved from destruction – serving as his primary channel of divine grace – for us – and for all the souls yet to be born.

And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.  (Matthew 16:18-19)

Grace is a totally gratuitous (absolutely free) gift from Almighty God – a share in his own divine life – obtained for us by Jesus Christ, on the cross at Calvary, at great personal cost – yet offered to us freely, in the spirit of love and eternal friendship, so that we might choose to cast off the shackles of eternal death and claim our rightful inheritance with God in Heaven, as adopted sons and daughters.

As a result of all this, Christians are justified before God (credited with righteousness – see Genesis 15:3-6) through faith in Jesus Christ.

Faith itself is a positive response to God’s grace and his call. (John 6:44)

Sanctification (becoming holy) is also a critical function of God’s grace – since God is holy and no one/nothing less than holy can live up to Heavenly standards. (Leviticus 11:45)

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The primary manifestation of our willing acceptance of God’s grace and our voluntary cooperation with his will is the Cardinal Virtue known as Faith, which is typically accompanied by two other Cardinal Virtues: Hope And Charity (Love).

Once a Christian is initially justified and sanctified before God through grace and Faith, the order of priority typically reverses – with Charity moving to the front – leaving  Hope solidly in the middle, and Faith acting as a  bulwark, keeping everything rightly ordered, balanced and in its’ proper place.

For baptized, faithful Christians, it works pretty much like this:

Love God. Love your neighbor. This is Practical Charity.

Love works no ill to his neighbor:
therefore love [is] the fulfilling of the law. (Romans 13:10)

Responding to God’s grace, through Love
we keep all God’s Commandments.

Giving freely of ourselves in Faith,
while constantly striving to cooperate with his grace,
we Hope to merit eternal life. 

All should take note

… without faith [it is] impossible to please God: for he that comes to God must believe that he is, and [that] he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.  (Hebrews 11:6)

Hebrews 11:1-40 is probably the greatest litany of faith ever written. Look it up and read it for yourself.

A constant teaching of the Catholic Church, from the earliest days, is: Outside the Church There Is No Salvation. That’s because full, faithful and active membership in the Catholic Church is the divinely-designated, Christ-instituted, “ordinary” means of obtaining  the necessary measure of God’s saving grace, for all those alive here on earth.

When God gives us a gift, he expects us to use it, in the spirit in which it was given. Jesus Christ instituted the Catholic Church for the purpose of our salvation – for the care of souls – for the common good of all mankind – for teaching, sanctifying and rightly governing –
with power and authority – in his holy name.

Jesus never founded or authorized any other church! To the contrary:

That they all may be one; as thou, Father, [art] in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gave to me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
(John 17:21-23)

A synthesis of all damnable heresies:

According to the personal opinions of many of today’s highly placed religious leaders and politicians, as well as a fair number of “regular” Catholics and even some Catholic clerics  – God is love and love conquers all – so there’s no need to worry about Jesus, church, grace, truth, commandments, life, death, Heaven or Hell, one’s personal religious beliefs/affiliation – or much of anything else.

“Just BE nice,” they say!

To the contrary,
in accordance with settled Catholic dogma (and common sense)
salvation by any other means,
other than a lifetime of full, faithful, active membership
in the Catholic Church – the only Church that Jesus Christ
ever personally founded, authorized,
supernaturally empowered and eternally guaranteed –
is likely to require a great miracle.

And miracles continue to be very, very rare!

BibleInspired

The sacred scriptures rightly remind us:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.  (John 3:16-18)

Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. (John 15:13)

But without faith [it is] impossible to please [him]: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and [that] he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.  (Hebrews 11:6)

Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, [even] by him doth this man stand here before you whole.

This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.  (Acts 4:10-12)

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Of course, God is sovereign, merciful,
loving, all-knowing  and all-powerful,
so he might decide to save anyone – of any faith – or no faith at all –
for any reason – or for no reason at all!

In such an event, salvation would still be obtained
only by the divine application of that saving grace
which was obtained for us by Jesus Christ,
on the cross, at Calvary.

So it is possible that non-Catholics, non-Christians, and virtually anyone might be saved – but is that likely?

  Let’s focus on the definition of the word “might”:

might 2  (mt)

aux.v. Past tense of may

1.

a. Used to indicate a condition or state contrary to fact: She might help if she knew the truth.
b. Used to indicate a possibility or probability that is weaker than may: We might discover a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
2. Used to express possibility or probability or permission in the past: She told him yesterday he might not go on the trip.
3. Used to express a higher degree of deference or politeness than may, ought, or should: Might I express my opinion?

The Bottom Line

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There is no substitute for a lifetime
of fervent prayer and practical religious study
combined with full, faithful and regular participation
in all of the work, worship, sacraments and devotions
of the Catholic Church. 

Please share this Thanksgiving message of grace and salvation
with your friends and family.

A short but comprehensive review of the Catholic Faith (PDF)

Further study

The Last Things – A Traditional Catholic Study

 fourlastthings

 

I          PRELIMINARY CONSIDERATIONS — DEATH —PSYCHOLOGY OF THE DISEMBODIED SOUL —DURATION OF THE NEXT LIFE


II        DEATH AND THE PARTICULAR JUDGMENT

III       HELL—DOCTRINAL TRUTHS—TWOFOLD PAIN OF HELL—MITIGATION OF THE PAINS OF HELL—THE FIRE OF HELL

IV       HELL — THEOLOGICAL SPECULATIONS — PAIN OF LOSS, PAIN OF SENSE—ACTION OF FIRE OF HELL

V        HELL—APOLOGETIC FALSE AND TRUE—OB­JECTIONS ANSWERED

VI       PURGATORY ERRORS—CATHOLIC DOGMA— PAINS AND JOYS OF PURGATORY

VII     HEAVEN—HAPPINESS OF HEAVEN—ESSENTIAL AND ACCIDENTAL GLORY OF THE BLESSED

VIII   THE RESURRECTION AND THE GENERAL JUDGMENT—QUALITIES OF RISEN BODIES

IX       LIMBO—SUFFERINGS OF LIMBO—WHO GO TO LIMBO

APPENDIX—MIRACULOUS RESURRECTIONS OF THE DEAD      

Link to site

I love this pope. He reminds me of my (now dearly departed) maiden Aunt Genevieve.

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1955 Chevy Bel Air – Proof of God’s Abiding Love?

by Doug Lawrence

My aunt Gene (Genevieve) never married, always held down a good job, and for most of her life, lived in a modest apartment, along with her two unmarried sisters.

By the time I was two years of age there was already no doubt in my mind that aunt Gene was also a good Catholic. She never failed to attend Sunday Mass – and as further proof of God’s abiding love, she actually won a a three-speed, red and white, 1955 Chevy – at the Saint John of God Church Raffle. In Chicago, during the 1950’s you couldn’t be much more publicly Catholic than that!

She was a charitable and helpful person, willing to do just about anything for anybody. She loved little babies, she loved her family and she loved her food. Gene was also a bit “quirky” – holding to her own opinions on certain things, in spite of obvious and abundant evidence to the contrary – stubbornly clinging to certain mysterious habits, rituals and personal preferences. It wasn’t always easy figuring out precisely what she meant, when she was speaking. But she was my aunt and I loved her, without qualification or exception. That’s what family is all about.

It wasn’t until several decades later, after aunt Gene had been diagnosed with a particularly fast-growing strain of lung cancer, that I would begin to understand the true depth and utter practicality of her Catholic faith.

Learning that all available treatments had failed and she would surely die very soon, Gene remained upbeat and generally unconcerned. She certainly didn’t like what the cancer had done and was continuing to do to her body, but as a woman of faith, she always knew the end would come – whatever the circumstances – and she had always relied on Jesus Christ and his Catholic Church to keep her fully prepared for that day.

She was a true daughter of the Catholic Church who fully accepted (to the very best of her ability) all that the Catholic Church practiced and proclaimed. She had for a long, long time now, been a very close friend of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist and of his Blessed Mother, so she had absolutely nothing to fear.

Aunt Gene also found great solace in this type of traditional Catholic stuff which many today – unfortunately – think is out of date. But unless and until death itself goes out of style, I must respectfully disagree!

She told me all this the day before she died. It was a life (and faith) lesson that I will never forget. I also have little doubt that her prayers were answered – both here – and in the next life. We should all pray for similar graces.

So … how does Pope Francis remind me of my “sainted” Aunt Genevieve?

Other than the physical resemblance (they could pass for brother and sister) they’re both a bit quirky and sometimes difficult to understand; neither ever married; both had a penchant for relatively unusual, minimalist living arrangements; both made extensive use of public transportation; both are well-traveled; both worked long and hard at their chosen professions; both are by virtue of baptism, undeniably Catholic and people of faith.

As such, they are both “family” to me, a fellow Catholic and adopted child of God – so I love them, without qualification or exception.

This would remain true even if it became necessary for me to go out of my way to charitably correct, defend and/or explain occasional incongruous, irrational, embarrassing conduct or “quirky” personal opinions.

Nobody’s perfect – so who am I to judge – right?

In the end, that’s what “family” – and authentic Catholicism – is all about!

Photo: Wikipedia

Some of that “old time religion” from Peoria, IL Bishop Jenky

“Jesus taught that our temporal choices have eternal consequences. Jesus revealed there is not only an everlasting heaven but there is an everlasting hell. Today’s popular, liberal Christianity tends to beige all of that over. 

The God of our liberal therapeutic culture is usually presented as only a benign kind of higher force. This concept of God is almost like a tolerant psychiatrist, who for $400 an hour will patiently listen to absolutely everything we may have to say. There is no right or wrong, no judgment and certainly no punishment for deliberate sin.

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Who is he to judge?

Pope Francis told his Catholic Church faithful in a Monday Mass that they ought to control their tongues and stop gossiping — it’s very nearly akin to murder.

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Editor’s note: But is it still OK to publicly “dis” traditional Catholics and label them heretics?

Three sources from which sin springs.

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The first reading from today’s Mass is an extraordinary moral tale from the  Book of Daniel. It is the story of Susanna. The full passage (which is quite lengthy) can be found here: Daniel 13:1-62. Interestingly it is missing from Protestant Bibles which use a truncated version of the Book of Daniel. As such it is a lesser known passage, even among Catholics since it is only read on a weekday Mass once a year.

It features the story of a beautiful young woman, Susanna, married to a man named Joakim. One day as she is bathing in a private garden two older men who have hidden themselves there out of lust try to seduce Susanna who rebuffs their brazen overture. They threaten to falsely accuse her of having committed adultery with a young man in garden if she does not give way to their desires. She still refuses and they follow through on their threatened lie. They further demand that she should be stoned. Things look bleak for Susanna until Daniel comes to the rescue and, through crafty interrogation, exposes their lie for what it is. The story is a small masterpiece. If you have never read it,  you should. In the course of its engaging tale it gives us a kind of anatomy lesson of sin. It is good to consider the teachings here.

In a remarkable description the story describes a threefold source from which their sins spring forth. The text says: They suppressed their consciences; they would not allow their eyes to look to heaven, and did not keep in mind just judgments. (Daniel 13:9). I’d like to take a look at each of these three sources from which sin springs.

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Obama is a Gift from God

How is Obama a gift from God? Look at it this way. We get what we deserve. The American people voted for Obama. They did so for a complex net of reasons, but when they are all summed up, we chose him. I’m in a hurry this morning, and it would take a very long post to analyze all those complex reasons, but the fact of the matter he is our president and everything is a gift from God.

What interests me is how, looking at history, the bad stuff that happens is also a gift from God because it is his judgement on the human race. This is the message of the Old Testament prophets and the message of the Old Testament to our society today. Read the Old Testament. Understand the prophets. Read the history. See what happened.

The people turn away from God. They turn to their own lust, their own greed, their own cruelty. The drift into complacency and despair and decadence and then they are swept away. Doomsday. Judgement, and all that is a gift of God just as much as the prosperity and peace and goodness and happiness that comes when a person or a nation obeys God and follows his rule book.

Link

Something worth remembering

Timely Biblical Lessons About Idolatry, Chastisement, Prideful Arrogance, Divine Judgment and Sudden Destruction.

Read more from Msgr. Charles Pope

* * * NEWS FLASH – swallowing small amounts of saliva, over extended periods of time, is ALWAYS FATAL * * *

Momento mori: Latin phrase meaning, “Remember, you will die”.

This is the truest reality there is. This is what makes us all the same. It doesn’t matter how rich we are, or how popular we are, or how powerful we are: we are all going to “kick the bucket” one day. Isn’t that a nice thought?

Okay, you may say, so what? After we come to accept this basic reality, we have to make sure we do everything with our end in mind. God tells us in the Book of Sirach, “Call no man happy before his death, for by how he ends, a man is known” (11:28 [RNAB]). The world is filled with examples of men who began well and ended badly! We need to make sure that we are not one of them!

If we keep our end in mind then we can begin to reflect on what is most important: What will I accomplish with my short time on earth? What do I want people to say about me once I’ve taken my last breath? Was my life worth living? Will I be a person who changed the world? Will I be a person who gave more than I took? Or will I be a person who took more than I gave? Will people say of me, “I loved to be around that man because he was a true man and he gave his life away for others”? Or will they say, “That person was one of the most miserable human beings you would ever want to meet”? What will others say about you?

Read more from Father Larry Richards

Which is greater in God: Mercy or Justice?

We know that in God there is both mercy and justice; rather, that God is both mercy and justice. However, we also pray that, upon our death, we might meet in Christ not the just Judge, but the merciful Savior. Knowing that mercy and justice can never truly contradict one another, we might still ask which is greater in God, and which comes first and which is greater.
Is justice the foundation from which mercy builds? Or, is mercy the fundamental disposition of God toward his creatures?
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Editor’s note: Those who approach God in charity, and with genuine humility are likely to encounter their merciful Savior. Otherwise … ???

The “right to choose” is a gift from God, but misusing that gift results in divine judgment.

by Doug Lawrence

God created man as a free person, obliged to make all kinds of free-will choices, and to answer for them, come Judgment Day.

One who knowingly and willingly chooses evil has nothing but the mercy of God, on which to rely.

One who knowingly induces others to do evil, by whatever means, shares the responsibility for all the negative consequences that logically follow.

But what of the person who claims their conscience informs them to the contrary … who perceives evil as good … and perhaps, good as evil? What then?

He gets to be President of the United States, and he gets to give a State of the Union speech on national television, in order to try to justify his seriously disordered “take” on things!

May God have mercy on his soul … and if he manages to get himself reelected … on this once great country!

What is the meaning of Advent, and what do we understand by the term?

What is the meaning of Advent, and what do we understand by the term?

The word Advent signifies coming, and by it is understood the visible coming of the Son of God into this world, at two different times.

It was when the Son of God, conceived of the Holy Ghost in the womb of the immaculate Virgin Mary, was born, according to the flesh, in the fullness of time, and sanctified the world by His coming, for which the patriarchs and prophets had so longed (Gen. 49:10; Is. G4:1; Lk. 10:24).

Since Christ had not yet come, how could the Just of the Old Law be saved?

Immediately after their sin, God revealed to our first parents that His only-begotten Son would become man and redeem the world (Gen. 3:15). In the hope of this Redeemer and through His merits, all in the old covenant who participated in His merits by innocence or by penance, and who died in the grace of God, were saved, although they were excluded from heaven until the Ascension of Christ.

When will the second coming of Christ take place?

At the end of the world when Christ will come, with great power and majesty, to judge both the living and the dead.

Excerpted from “Explanation of the Epistles and Gospels” by the Rev. Leonard Goffine (1874)

Submitted by Bob Stanley

Brief editorial in light of the recent Father Corapi announcement and all the other sad, weird things transpiring in the Catholic Church, these days.

by Doug Lawrence

If I thought the Catholic Church was just another corporate entity, I would have “sold all my stock” and “washed my hands of it” many, many years ago.

It’s not. So I didn’t.

I think Father Corapi has indeed been wronged, is suffering from some sort of illness, is not in his right mind, and is in need of our continued prayers, assistance and support … not in starting up a new organization … but in being once again reconciled with the church, his religious order, and the Catholic ministerial priesthood.

It would be a real shame and a grave sin to do anything less.

I have faith that someone in authority will step up to champion this process. And at this point, it doesn’t matter whether the allegations against Father Corapi are ever substantiated or refuted. Reconciliation is what’s necessary … and in the Catholic Church, reconciliation has never required judgment, or even a definitive finding of fault.

In fact, the opposite is true.

God is willing to forgive as soon as we admit that we may have fallen short, that we are truly sorry for all of our failures, and we resolve to make a good faith effort to try to do better, in the future. Reconciliation eliminates the need for judgment, clearing the way so grace can supernaturally operate, for the benefit of the whole church. That’s the beauty of it!

Why should we, who are encouraged to imitate Jesus Christ in word and deed, even attempt to apply any other standard to the Corapi affair?

The man Corapi has been a good and faithful priest for twenty years. Preaching the truth in a particularly effective way, he has brought countless souls to Jesus Christ. The allegations made against him are not particularly outrageous or grievous. Certainly not unforgivable! How is it then, that we all seem to be willing to throw in the towel, pridefully retreat to our respective corners, claim victory, and simply walk away?

If all parties involved in this mess can’t get together and sign-on to a joint, traditionally Catholic reconciliation strategy, then perhaps my assessment of the supernatural nature of the Catholic Church is wrong after all, the Body of Christ is in much worse shape than anyone ever suspected, and it’s time to do some strategic short-selling.

God, help us gracefully recover from this terrible scandal. Please!

Complete article summary and chronology of the Father Corapi affair

“I don’t know where we went wrong other than that we obviously don’t understand the Scriptures in the way that we should.”

I had profiled several believers before May 21. The day after, most didn’t answer the phone. Those who did wouldn’t talk on the record. But one man, his voice quavering, said he was still holding out hope that they were one day off. Another believer asserted that their prayers worked: God delayed judgment so that more people could be saved, but the end is “imminent.”

Tom Evans was contrite. Evans is on the board of Family Radio, the organization led by Harold Camping, who calculated and promoted the May 21 date.

“I don’t know where we went wrong other than that we obviously don’t understand the Scriptures in the way that we should,” he says.

It’s very hard for us to say, ‘Boy, was I stupid!’ The more committed a person is to their prophecy, the more likely they are to justify that action, and to try to convince people that their belief was in some way right or good. – Elliot Aronson, psychologist

Camping has yet to make a statement, but Evans hopes they will not recalculate and announce a new date for Judgment Day. After all, they’ve done that at least once before — in 1994 — and he believes they’ve learned a lesson.

Link

Reader Paul comments on “Those in danger of death are presumed to be repentant…”

See the original article here:

“Those in danger of death are presumed to be repentant…”

Paul writes:

We are all quite damnable sinners and our life style and actions may be far less than we hope them to be. As death approaches perhaps we should be in terror of our eternity especially if we think about God and his judgment upon our wretched selves.

It is not that I disagree with this point. Indeed it is strangely comforting to remember that God is All Just and everything we do we shall be called to account for. Many wicked people would do well to tremble at this thought and perhaps the fear of eternal damnation may allow grace into their hearts before it is too late. After Death it will certainly be too late to repent and if a soul refuses grace all its life and at death spits hate upon whatever grace is offered its fate may be what it desires. As C.S.Lewis noted; “hell is a door locked from the inside”.

Nevertheless, we should not be afraid of our final judgment. Rather we should welcome it and go blithely to Our Lord. That is not because we are mentally deranged but as Christians we believe in something even greater than Judgment . . . We believe in Hope.

This virtue comes not from what we do not know but from what we do know.

It is about knowing that God is Love and essentially is revealed by Jesus as a God of infinite mercy and compassion. Hence the thief on the cross asks “Jesus remember me when you go into your kingdom“. The response of Jesus is one of sublime mercy when he promises the thief eternal salvation that very day. It is not that the thief has asked for repentance because he fears final annihilation but because he dares hope that this man crucified beside him so unjustly is a king after all.

And if the Gospels are Good News then we must recall what they are good news about? That Jesus understands us and seeks out the company of sinners rather than condemning us and blasting us into oblivion because of this or that action.

Mortal sin is constantly being re-evaluated by the Catholic Church. We simply do not understand the eternal consequences of any temporal act. There are some actions that are heinous and these are universally abhorred. Yet our understanding of these has and does change in time because we are creatures of time and place. For example, Abortion is a horrible sin but not all people that have had an abortion are of equal guilt because time and sense make the individual culpable or less so. The act is monstrous but individuals take greater or lesser part by their understanding. Again for example, suicide used to be considered always a mortal sin but today we are more gentle in our understanding that we simply do not know the reasoning or intelligence of a person that takes their own life. It would be insensitive and immoral for us to dismiss the hope of paradise because of any action of which we are ignorant of the full story.

Instead we have come to understand that God is not about Judgment but about infinite understanding, kindness, gentleness, mercy. Our hope is therefore that our loving father whom knows us intimately will forgive us more often then we fall, prostrate with our own stupidity.

All people of good will are potentially redeemable and it is the will of Our Lord that we shall be saved and not condemned.

When we see the Sacred Heart of Jesus we are told that he loves us beyond all reason or rational consideration. The Sacred Heart does not require us to offer a prayer in word, a simple longing look for example is enough to bring grace of salvation upon us. We will never earn Paradise but Jesus gives us his everything so that we can obtain it. It is Love that we face at death and it will require us to open before it every window in our soul. We can never escape Gods justice and his final judgment upon us but as Christians we must not be afraid to embrace his Love. If we can do this then we believe that Salvation is assured no matter our faults or errors at death.

To turn from Gods grace is unfortunate and could be disastrous but we must never forget “God is Love” and that should encourage us to go into the light and give us faith to welcome our Risen lord.

“Those in danger of death are presumed to be repentant…”

by Doug Lawrence

In order to make a good confession, a person typically needs to confess ALL known mortal (grave) sins to the priest, and to have (at the very least) imperfect contrition for having committed the sins, along with a firm purpose (and at least, a reasonable possibility) of actual repentance, i.e. turning away from committing those sins, in the future.

Absent all of the above, priestly sacramental absolution for sins is typically ineffective, and the person remains in a state of mortal sin.

The only exception to the “repentance rule” is when a person is near death.

From a purely practical standpoint, a person very near death is not likely to commit grave sin. Similarly, should death occur, it will no longer be possible for the person to commit sin, at all. In that case, a profound “change in ways” would be unavoidable! Hence, the church … the Catholic ministerial priesthood … and Jesus Christ … mercifully presumes that, whenever death is very near … a state of authentic repentance already exists. It’s a “gimme”.

Contrition is still required, as is a complete confession of all known, mortal sins.

This is truly great news for hypocrites, fallen away Catholics, adulterers, homosexuals, and all other types of habitual, grave sinners … assuming that they are blessed with the availability of a Catholic priest … and they still have the physical ability to make an otherwise, good confession … when their time comes to shuffle off this mortal coil.

Truth be told, until the moment a person dies and shortly finds himself standing before Jesus Christ … sins … even the gravest kind … are extraordinarily simple to have absolved. But after death … not nearly so much.

Contrary to today’s popular opinion, there is no reliable way … outside the Sacrament of Reconciliation … to obtain forgiveness of mortal sins … sins which can cause a soul to end up in hell.

So, it’s best always to “err” on the side of caution … especially since no one has yet returned to report what happens to those unfortunates who find themselves standing in judgment … sinful, unrepentant, and still “puffed up” with pride … before our loving God … who actually owes us sinners nothing but wrath.

Related article (PDF)

Submitted by Doria2