Once a Catholic, always a Catholic – you hope!

One of the sweet things about being a priest is being able to minister at a person’s deathbed. The veil between this world and the next is very thin at that point, and you can see so much. When I say you can “see” so much what I mean is that so much is revealed. At that point the person who is dying is usually very vulnerable and open. Their worldly facade is fading. Their accomplishments and pride are forgotten. They realize that all the stuff of this world will soon be left behind.

Often the person is quietly sleeping. The family is gathered around and there is no response as the last rites are given. On the other hand, sometimes the process is very conscious. More than once I’ve been called to visit a man or woman who has called the parish office specifically because they know they are dying and they want to see a Catholic priest.

So I once made my way to a small apartment in a not so good part of town. I was admitted to find a man in his sixties with a haggard expression gasping for air. Call him Ralph.

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Pope Francis violates his own standards, by enumerating his Twitter followers.

“Dear Followers I understand there are now over 10 million of you!” the pontiff wrote on his nine accounts, which publish simultaneously in languages including Latin, Polish and Arabic. “I thank you with all my heart and ask you to continue praying for me.”

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Editor’s note: Rampant Pelagianism has evidently penetrated to the highest level of the Catholic Church.

Related link: Pope Francis “dissing” Catholic group that prayed 3,525 rosaries on his behalf – merely for mentioning the number of rosaries that were prayed!

One of the recurring misconceptions that other Christian sects have about Catholicism is that the Catholic Mass is not biblical and Catholics do not read the Bible.

MASSsummit

Let’s take the Mass, for instance. Scott Hahn, a world-renowned Catholic theologian converted from evangelical Calvinism, surreptitiously attended a Catholic Mass in Wisconsin in the early 1980s before his conversion. Bible in hand, he began to follow this “strange” liturgy in an attempt to take notes and return to his students to show how the Catholic Mass was the ultimate sacrilege.

Long story short, Hahn states that “something hit me.” He realized that the words on the liturgy of the Mass were coming from the open Bible beside him. A line from Isaiah, another from Paul, another from a psalm.

Hahn learned later that during the Liturgy of the Word, Catholics, over a three-year period, hear the Scriptures proclaimed from the Old and New Testaments and the four Gospels. Furthermore, Hahn points out, during the Eucharistic Liturgy part of the Mass, the believer is drawn not only into the Last Supper but also into the glorious New Heavenly Jerusalem of the Book of Revelation with all its hymns and praises.

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Tyler Flowers, catcher for the Chicago White Sox: I love praying the Rosary.

tflowers

I love to pray rosaries, which are very Christ-centered. In fact, Jesus’ name is literally at the center of the Hail Mary. It’s been said that praying the rosary is learning about Jesus at the school of Mary.

When you consider what Jesus said about becoming like a little child in order to enter the kingdom of heaven, it’s easy to see the importance of placing ourselves at the feet of our spiritual mother, Mary.

Everyone knows it’s perfectly normal to see a child with his mother in the natural order, but the same is also true in the spiritual order: Children of God the Father need a mother, and they have one in Mary. When you become more devoted to Mary, you will inevitably become more devoted to Jesus in the Eucharist.

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Editor’s note: The Cubs could use a few guys like this.

Proclaiming God’s truth when nobody cares to hear (or heed) it

Honolulu’s Catholic Bishop Larry Silva has issued an “urgent” appeal against gay marriage in Hawaii, arguing bluntly that some forms of discrimination are acceptable — including discrimination against same-sex couples.

The prelate’s appeal came as Gov. Neil Abercrombie is being urged to call a special session of the Hawaii Legislature to legalize marriage equality.  Six states including Washington have legalized same-sex marriage in the past year, and a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling has brought marriage equality back to California.

“The language of the proponents is meant to convince us that this is a civil rights issue and that anyone who does not agree is bigoted,” Silva wrote.  “Do not be led astray with such language, and do not allow yourself to be bullied by it.”

The Honolulu bishop is — literally — urging his flock to hit the beads.  Silva told Catholics they should pray the rosary daily against same-sex marriage, and “if possible” recite their prayers around the State Capitol block in Honolulu.

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Editor’s note: Ever since the homosexual community managed to dodge the primary responsibility for the spread of the HIV virus – and induce the government to pay the tab for both the care and the restorative therapies – it was apparent (to me) that some type of malevolent, even demonic force was at work in the body politic.

The demeanor of many homosexuals and homosexualist groups – including the Democratic Party – seems to confirm this, so Bishop Silva’s approach is absolute correct and eminently practical.

We should all join in his Rosary campaign.

Old Protestant heresy that refuses to die: Did Jesus ever use the term “vain repetition”?

vainrepetWhen it comes to Catholic prayer, repetition is anything but vain

by Doug Lawrence

In the Gospels, we find Jesus praying quite often, just as he trains and encourages his apostles and disciples to do.  He also delivers a caution:

Matthew 6:7-8 And when you are praying, speak not much, as the heathens. For they think that in their much speaking they may be heard. Be not you therefore like to them for your Father knoweth what is needful for you, before you ask him. (Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible)

Some 1500 years later, our Protestant brethren decided to translate the same passage (in their King James Bible) thusly:

Matthew 6:7-8 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen [do]: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.

As if mis-translating the Holy Writ wasn’t  bad enough, they went on to apply their twisted logic to traditional Catholic prayers and devotions – like the Rosary and the Mass – deeming them “unbiblical”.

That is and always was pure, virulently anti-Catholic “BS”!

Jesus simply wanted his disciples to know that even a vast number of prayers – combined with any number of  incantations, sacrifices, dances and chants – to false, pagan gods – could never accomplish a thing – and he certainly didn’t want his disciples to be out in public, looking like pagans, scandalously wasting their time and committing grave sin – by praying to false gods.

That’s one reason Jesus gave us “The Lord’s Prayer” – a short, simple method of placing 7 key petitions before our Father in Heaven – petitions which effectively address virtually every human need.

St. Paul reminds us in 1st Thessalonians 5:17 to “Pray without ceasing.”

Does any of this sound like “vain repetition”?

How many times can a person recite “The Lord’s Prayer” before it becomes “vain repetition”? How many times can someone sing “Amazing Grace” or “How Great Thou Art” before it becomes “vain repetition”? How many times a day can we elevate our minds and hearts to God, before it becomes “vain repetition”?

Without repetition human beings find it extremely difficult to learn and/or perfect just about anything. Our Creator God, of all persons, would certainly know that. But those who showed up a thousand years late and in order to promote their novel religious practices, chose to deny the sacred Tradition of the Catholic Church and co-opt the text of the Catholic Bible, apparently didn’t. Many of them apparently still don’t.

To put it simply – no amount of prayer, faithfully offered up to the one, true God, according the grace of Jesus Christ, by the power of the Holy Spirit – can ever be “in vain” – although through our own fault, our  prayers may not always prove to be completely effective. (Study this link to the Catechism about The Lord’s Prayer for important terms, limitations and conditions.)

Call Your Mother…

rosarycallmomSubmitted by Bob Stanley