- Catholic Bible Apologetics - Explain our Catholic Faith from the Holy Bible (under the laptop - Catholic Website)
- Trust in Christ - Not in Horoscopes Pope Francis Says (Diocesan News and BEYOND)
- Save Money and Gas with some simple driving Hints (Helpful Hints for Life)
Receiving the Gospel, Serving God and Neighbor
Back to School, Back to Truth, Back to Prayer
“For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth.
Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice." (John 18:37-38)
Many people this time of year are getting back into the habit of education and a regular 9 month schedule called school. For some it is brand new, bringing excitement; for others it is a struggle that may bring stress. Yet, all of us ought to continue to learn even if we do not ‘go to school.’
But an education is first meant to lead us to truth, and to the one ultimate truth, God. For Jesus (Who is God) said, “I am the Way, the TRUTH, and the Life. (John 14:6)” And what is knowledge and education if it does not lead one to its source? Plus, it was the Catholic Church that gave us Universities and the pursuit of truth and knowledge. Let you and I continue in pursuit of truth and the Truth, Jesus Christ!
Finally, as many people return to school and summer begins to wane, many will return to a formal schedule of prayer that summer may not have allowed. Prayer must ALWAYS be a part of your life and mine, day in and day out. But if prayer has not really been a part of your life, please start again right now!
Peace and prayers in Jesus through Mary, loved by Saint Joseph,
P.S. This coming Sunday is the Twentieth Sunday of Ordinary Time. >>> Readings
Queenship of Mary
Saving on Gas and being More Safe on the Road
1) Accelerate slowing; do not drive aggressively (save average of 33%)
2) Lower speeds (save average 12%) [Speed Limit or 5 less]
3) Use cruise control (save average 7%)
4) Remove excess weight (can save up to 2%)
5) Do not let your car idle for long. It only takes 10 seconds worth of gas to re-start it.
Apologetics without apology!
What does the Roman Catholic Church teach about ...? ... and why?
This website surveys the origin and development of Roman Catholic Christianity from the period of the apostolic church, through the post-apostolic church and into the conciliar movement. Principal attention is paid to the biblical basis of both doctrine and dogma as well as the role of paradosis (i.e. handing on the truth) in the history of the Church. Particular attention is also paid to the hierarchical founding and succession of leadership throughout the centuries.
[For those traveling this summer and needing to get to the Holy Mass.]
MASS TIMES AND CATHOLIC CHURCHES throughout the US
MAKE RETREATS AVAILABLE FOR PARISHIONERS
Some parishes offer retreats at their parish, but many also coordinate weekend retreats to a Diocesan Retreat House or a local monastery. There are retreats for all ages usually closer than one realizes, and they can greatly bless those who participate
Most people need time to hear God and recharge spiritually, but daily life often leaves little time and room to do that. Retreats in holy and/or quiet places can really connect or re-connect people to God. Powerful preached men and women retreats can help stir faith into flame for God, marriage, and family. High school and college age retreats can make the Faith more relatable to that age group, too.
Consult and ask your Parish Priest if it is okay to coordinate this for your parish. Or ask your Parish Priest, office staff, or someone at the diocese to make a list available to put in the bulletin or provide to men and women groups in your parish. When one or two of you go on retreat, and its effect is seen by others, that may lead to others going!
On the first 2 days of August each year, the Vatican offers the Pardon of Assisi– a plenary indulgence to anyone who visits a Franciscan church, goes to Confession, receives Communion, and prays for the Pope’s intentions. The tradition began in 1216 when St. Francis of Assisi wanted to offer plenary indulgences to locals who could not make pilgrimages to Jerusalem, Rome, or Spain; and petitioned Pope Honorius III to extend the indulgence to the Portiuncula chapel in Assisi.
The unique feast is a good reminder to get to Confession. In 2014, Pope Francis said, “do not be afraid of Confession” because of shame or embarrassment. He added, “when one finishes Confession one leaves free, grand, beautiful, forgiven, candid, happy. This is the beauty of Confession!”
by Elise Harris
Vatican City, Aug 13, / (EWTN News/CNA)-
Pointing to how Peter begins to sink when walking toward Jesus on the water in the day's Gospel reading, Francis noted that the same thing can happen to us when we put our trust in false securities.
“When we do not cling to the Word of the Lord, but consult horoscopes and fortune tellers, we begin to sink,” the Pope said Aug. 13.
The episode, he said, serves as a reminder “that faith in the Lord and in his word does not open a path where everything is calm and easy; it does not take us away from the storms of life.”
Rather, “faith gives us the security of a presence that pushes us to overcome the existential storms, the certainty of a hand that grabs us in order to help us in difficulties, showing the way even when it's dark.”
“Faith, then, is not an escape from life's problems, but it supports on the journey and gives it meaning.”
Pope Francis spoke to pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square for his weekly Angelus address, focusing on the day's Gospel reading from Matthew, in which Jesus walks on water in the midst of a storm, and beckons Peter to come to him. Peter initially begins to walk toward Jesus, but starts to sink out of fear when he sees the waves, and cries out for Jesus to rescue him.
This episode, Francis said, has a lot of symbolism for both individuals, and for the Church as a whole.
The boat can represent the life of each person, but also the life of the Church, he said, explaining that the wind signifies the “difficulties and trials” each will face.
Peter's cry of “Lord, command me to come to you,” and then his plea “Lord, save me!” represent both our desire feel close to the Lord, and “the fear and anguish which accompany us in the most difficult moments of our lives and our communities, marked by internal fragility and external difficulty,” Francis said.
In the moment when he looked at the wind and the waves and began to fear, Peter wasn't founded on the Word of God, “which was like an outstretched rope to cling to in front of the hostile and turbulent waters.”
The same thing happens to us when we put our faith in trivial, worldly securities, rather than in the Lord, he said.
Pope Francis said the passage is “a stupendous image” of the reality of the Church throughout the ages: “a ship which, along the crossing, must counter winds and storms which threaten to overwhelm it.”
What saves the ship is not the courage and quality of it's men, he said, but rather, “the guarantee against a shipwreck is faith in Christ and in his word.”
“On this ship we are safe, despite our miseries and weaknesses, above all when we get on our knees and adore the Lord” as the disciples did, who, after Jesus calmed the storm, prostrated themselves and said “truly you are the Son of God!”
To drive the point home, Francis had the crowd repeat the phrase, listening as they shouted “truly you are the Son of God” three times.
Francis closed his address asking that the Virgin Mary intercede in helping all to “stay firm in the faith in order to resist the storms of life, to stay on the boat of the Church, eschewing the temptation to go on amusing, yet insecure boats of ideologies, fashions and slogans.”
He then led pilgrims in praying the traditional Marian prayer and greeted various groups of youth from around Italy before asking for prayer and giving his blessing.
Man tends by nature toward the truth. He is obliged to honor and bear witness to it: "It is in accordance with their dignity that all men, because they are persons . . . are both impelled by their nature and bound by a moral obligation to seek the truth, especially religious truth. They are also bound to adhere to the truth once they come to know it and direct their whole lives in accordance with the demands of truth." -Catechism of the Catholic Church #2467
On the first day of school, the teacher asked a student, "What are your parents' names?" The student replied, "My father's name is Laughing and my mother's name is Smiling." The teacher said, "Are you kidding?" The student said, "No, Kidding is my brother. I am Joking."
-I dreamt I was forced to eat a giant marshmallow. When I woke up, my pillow was gone.
-Why is women’s soccer so rare?---It’s quite hard to find enough women willing to wear the same outfit.
-I saw a poster today, somebody was asking “Have you seen my cat?” So I called the number and said that I didn’t. I like to help where I can.
-My neighbors are listening to great music. Whether they like it or not.
Fun at the Office…
Bring in some dry ice and make it look like your coworker’s computer is smoking.
"Do you believe in life after death?" the boss asked one of his employees.
"Yes, sir," the new employee replied.
"Well, then, that makes everything just fine," the boss went on. "After you left early yesterday to go to your grandmother's funeral, she stopped in to see you!”
"Somebody has said there are only two kinds of people in the world. There are those who wake up in the morning and say, "Good morning, Lord," and there are those who wake up in the morning and say, "Good Lord, it's morning."
“The difficult thing with quotes on the internet is verifying them” – Abraham Lincoln (I think)
Martin Takes the Bait?
Martin arrived at Sunday school late. Miss Walter, his teacher, knew that Martin was usually very punctual so she asked him if anything was wrong.
Martin replied no, that he had been going fishing but his dad told him that he needed to go to church.
Miss Walter was very impressed and asked the lad if his dad had explained to him why it was more important to go to church than to go fishing?
Martin replied, 'Yes he did. Dad said he didn't have enough bait for both of us.'
The practice of goodness is accompanied by spontaneous spiritual joy and moral beauty. Likewise, truth carries with it the joy and splendor of spiritual beauty. Truth is beautiful in itself. Truth in words, the rational expression of the knowledge of created and uncreated reality, is necessary to man, who is endowed with intellect. But truth can also find other complementary forms of human expression, above all when it is a matter of evoking what is beyond words: the depths of the human heart, the exaltations of the soul, the mystery of God. Even before revealing himself to man in words of truth, God reveals himself to him through the universal language of creation, the work of his Word, of his wisdom: the order and harmony of the cosmos-which both the child and the scientist discover-"from the greatness and beauty of created things comes a corresponding perception of their Creator," "for the author of beauty created them."
[Wisdom] is a breath of the power of God, and a pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty; therefore nothing defiled gains entrance into her. For she is a reflection of eternal light, a spotless mirror of the working of God, and an image of his goodness. For [wisdom] is more beautiful than the sun, and excels every constellation of the stars. Compared with the light she is found to be superior, for it is succeeded by the night, but against wisdom evil does not prevail. I became enamored of her beauty.-Catechism of the Catholic Church #2500
for Self-Reflection, Couples or Family Discussion
The Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time - August 19th, 2018
The First Reading- Proverbs 9:1-6
Wisdom has built her house, she has set up her seven columns; she has dressed her meat, mixed her wine, yes, she has spread her table. She has sent out her maidens; she calls from the heights out over the city: "Let whoever is simple turn in here; To the one who lacks understanding, she says, Come, eat of my food, and drink of the wine I have mixed! Forsake foolishness that you may live; advance in the way of understanding."
The first reading from the book of Proverbs depicts wisdom as a woman who invites us to a great feast with the best meats, good wine and a beautiful spread. And who’s invited? The simple. Those who lack understanding. Us. She sends her servants out to find us; we don’t have to try and find her. God goes out after us, tracks us down, and invites us to fill ourselves with good things: food, yes, but also wisdom and understanding. They are given to us for free if we want them.
Adults - Do you sense Jesus sending his wisdom after you, calling and inviting you to him?
Teens -What foolishness do you persist in? What prevents you from turning it away to make room for wisdom and understanding?
Kids - What are some of your favorite wise sayings? Who said them?
Responsorial- Psalm 34: 2-3, 4-5, 6-7
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
I will bless the LORD at all times;
his praise shall be ever in my mouth.
Let my soul glory in the LORD;
the lowly will hear me and be glad.
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
Glorify the LORD with me,
Let us together extol his name.
I sought the LORD, and he answered me
And delivered me from all my fears.
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
Look to him that you may be radiant with joy.
And your faces may not blush with shame.
When the afflicted man called out, the LORD heard,
And from all his distress he saved him.
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
-Meditate on the Real Presence in the Eucharist as you receive Communion this week.
The Second Reading- Ephesians 5:15-20
Brothers and sisters: Watch carefully how you live, not as foolish persons but as wise, making the most of the opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore, do not continue in ignorance, but try to understand what is the will of the Lord. And do not get drunk on wine, in which lies debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and playing to the Lord in your hearts, giving thanks always and for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father.
The Letter to the Ephesians echoes image from the First Reading, entreating us to put away foolishness, welcome wisdom, and fill ourselves with the Spirit.
Take extra time to pray about God’s will and for wisdom before making decisions this week.
The Holy Gospel according to John 6: 51-58
Jesus said to the crowds: "I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world." The Jews quarreled among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?" Jesus said to them, "Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever."
In the Gospel, the murmuring has stopped. Now, the Jews (please note that wherever in the Gospel of John it says “the Jews,” John is referring to the Jewish authorities — it’s not a condemnation or a slur — just a distinction that he’s talking about a specific group among the Jewish community), those with authority, are openly arguing about what Jesus said regarding his being “flesh for the life of the world.” He is true life, and through the offering of his body, blood, soul, and divinity He gives us true, everlasting life, too. The food of God feeds our bodies and our spirits.
Adults Do you ever take the Real Presence for granted when you walk up for Communion? Do you intentionally remember that you are in the literal bodily presence of the Lord Himself?
Teens -If you’ve never heard of Eucharistic Miracles, do some research on this phenomenon of our Faith, such as the Miracle of Lanciano. If you’ve already heard of them, learn about one you haven’t heard of before.
Kids - Do you ever have a hard time understanding the things that Jesus said?