Monday, May 6, 2013
- In keeping with his style, Pope Francis cautioned about the dangers of a lukewarm faith by telling a childhood story on the importance of believing in the physical resurrection of Jesus.
“I remember, excuse me, a personal story,” he said during his daily morning Mass on May 3.
“As a child, every Good Friday my grandmother took us to the Procession of Candles and at the end of the procession the recumbent Christ came and my grandmother made us kneel down,” he recalled.
“She told us ‘children, look, he is dead, but tomorrow he will be risen!’” he said.
Pope Francis concelebrated the morning Mass with Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, the president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications and other priests.
Around 35 Swiss Guards and their commander Daniel Rudolf Anrig were among the approximately 50 guests invited to attend the Mass.
The Pope explained that his grandmother’s remarks were the vehicle that allowed his “faith in Christ, crucified and risen” to enter his heart.
“In the history of the Church there have been many, many people who have wanted to blur this strong certainty and speak of a spiritual resurrection,” remarked the Pope.
But this view is wrong because “Christ is alive,” he insisted.
In contrast with this deep faith is a lukewarm one that results in only “the courage to get involved in our small things, in our jealousies, our envy, our careerism and in selfishly going forward,” he noted.
“But this is not good for the Church, the Church must be courageous!” he exclaimed.
“Lukewarm Christians, without courage ... that hurts the Church so much because this tepid atmosphere draws you inside,” the Holy Father warned.
The consequence of this is that problems “arise among us, we no longer have the horizon or courage to pray towards heaven or the courage to proclaim the Gospel,” he stated.
Pope Francis pointed to prayer as the antidote to this kind of timidity.
“We all have to be courageous in prayer, in challenging Jesus!”
“Jesus, to put it in stronger terms, challenges us to prayer and says ‘whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son,’” he said.
The pontiff noted that “this is really powerful” and that “we must have the courage to go to Jesus and ask him to do it.”
“Do we have this courage in prayer or do we pray a little, when we can, spending a bit of time in prayer?” he asked the congregation.
The Swiss Guard will swear in 35 new recruits on May 6 at the Vatican and the Holy Father offered those at the Mass a special greeting, telling them that their service is “a beautiful testimony of fidelity to the Church” and “love for the Pope.”
Monday, April 15, 2013
Where has the media been on this story !
Out of Yahoo News, By Dave Warner
PHILADELPHIA - A city medical examiner described fetal body parts stored in pet food containers during his testimony on Monday at a murder trial that has drawn a national spotlight after anti-abortion groups complained that it was being ignored.
The graphic testimony came in the fifth week of the murder trial of Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 72, who faces the death penalty if convicted of charges he killed seven infants and a female patient at what a grand jury described as his squalid abortion clinic in urban West Philadelphia.
The horror story unfolding in daily testimony since the trial began in Common Pleas Court in March has been largely ignored by national media, and anti-abortion advocates have criticized the silence, claiming a media bias toward abortion rights and touching off a political firestorm.
The criticism went viral online and was echoed by Congressional Republicans. Washington Post blogger Melinda Henneberger scoffed at some media arguments that the trial was largely ignored because it was too lurid or because it involved low-income residents, saying "the only abortion story most outlets ever cover in the news pages is every single threat or perceived threat to abortion rights."
In the wake of criticism about the news coverage, national media outlets packed the courthouse on Monday, prompting Judge Jeffrey Minehart to warn the jury not to read articles about the trial, noting, "It has come to my attention that the media in this case has increased." Gosnell is accused of severing infants' spinal chords after they lived through an abortion procedure.
Read the rest of the story HERE
Sunday, April 7, 2013
Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. He was the only disciple absent; on his return he heard what had happened but refused to believe it. The Lord came a second time; he offered his side for the disbelieving disciple to touch, held out his hands, and showing the scars of his wounds, healed the wound of his disbelief.
Dearly beloved, what do you see in these events? Do you really believe that it was by chance that this chosen disciple was absent, then came and heard, heard and doubted, doubted and touched, touched and believed? It was not by chance but in God’s providence. In a marvelous way God’s mercy arranged that the disbelieving disciple, in touching the wounds of his master’s body, should heal our wounds of disbelief. The disbelief of Thomas has done more for our faith than the faith of the other disciples. As he touches Christ and is won over to belief, every doubt is cast aside and our faith is strengthened. So the disciple who doubted, then felt Christ’s wounds, becomes a witness to the reality of the resurrection.
Touching Christ, he cried out: My Lord and my God. Jesus said to him: Because you have seen me, Thomas, you have believed. Paul said: Faith is the guarantee of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen. It is clear, then, that faith is the proof of what can not be seen. What is seen gives knowledge, not faith. When Thomas saw and touched, why was he told: You have believed because you have seen me? Because what he saw and what he believed were different things. God cannot be seen by mortal man. Thomas saw a human being, whom he acknowledged to be God, and said: My Lord and my God. Seeing, he believed; looking at one who was true man, he cried out that this was God, the God he could not see.
What follows is reason for great joy: Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed. There is here a particular reference to ourselves; we hold in our hearts one we have not seen in the flesh. We are included in these words, but only if we follow up our faith with good works. The true believer practices what he believes. But of those who pay only lip service to faith, Paul has this to say: They profess to know God, but they deny him in their works. Therefore James says: Faith without works is dead.
St. Gregory the Great
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Tony Meléndez appeared March 4th at St. Thomas Church in Bloomfield, NJ. Needless to say, the show was inspirational and emotional.
José Antonio Meléndez Rodríguez is a Nicaraguan American guitar player, composer, singer, and songwriter who was born without arms. His mother took Thalidomide while pregnant, which caused his disability. Meléndez has learned to play the guitar with his feet.