Friday 25th July 2014

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God Reveals His Name

March 21, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By DON FIER In last week’s installment of this series on the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), we examined the fundamental significance of coming to know that all that we believe begins with God and ends with God. “I believe in God” is the first affirmation of the Apostles’ Creed, and likewise, Sacred Scripture begins with the words, “In the beginning God. . . .” (Gen. 1:1). Believing in the one, true God with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength is central to the Catholic faith and is the basis for each of the 12 articles of the Creed. It is upon professing our belief in God that the “other articles help us to know God better as…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

March 20, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

Q. In a parish bulletin column, our pastor said that “the Catechism of the Catholic Church roundly condemns capital punishment, which makes this issue one more thing that we need to pray about as we strive to build a civilization and culture of life.” Is that true? — T.L.H., Massachusetts. A. No, it is not true that the Catechism “roundly condemns” capital punishment. What the Catechism (n. 2267) does say is that “assuming that the guilty party’s identity and responsibility have been fully determined, the traditional teaching of the Church does not exclude recourse to the death penalty, if this is the only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust aggressor. If, however, non-lethal means are sufficient…Continue Reading

Fourth Sunday Of Lent (YR A)

March 19, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Readings: 1 Samuel 16:1b, 6-7, 10-13a Eph. 5:8-14 John 9:1-41 Pray For True Light In the second reading St. Paul tells us that we are light in the Lord and that we are, therefore, to live as children of the light. He makes the distinction between light and darkness, but that can be applied in a variety of ways. It can be truth and falsehood, it can be good and evil, it can be clarity and confusion, it can be charity and selfishness, and so on. The fact that we have been enlightened by Christ does not necessarily imply that we have allowed the light of Christ into every part of our being; neither does it…Continue Reading

Pope’s Lenten Reflection With Priests of Rome . . . Pray To All The Priests In Heaven For The Grace Of Mercy

March 18, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

VATICAN CITY (ZENIT) — Here is a translation of what Pope Francis said March 6 when he met with the clergy of the Diocese of Rome, in the Paul VI Hall, for the traditional appointment at the beginning of Lent. After the greeting of the cardinal vicar, Agostino Vallini, the Pope gave the address below. ZENIT News Agency provided the translation and the text; all rights reserved. +    +    + When together with the cardinal vicar, we gave thought to this meeting, I said to him that I could do a meditation for you on the subject of mercy. It does us good, at the beginning of Lent, to reflect together as priests on mercy. We are all in need…Continue Reading

On Temptation

March 16, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

VATICAN CITY (ZENIT) — Here is the Holy Father’s address before and after the recitation of the angelus to the pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square on March 9. Dear brothers and sisters, hello! The Gospel of the first Sunday of Lent presents us every year with an episode about the temptations of Jesus, when the Holy Spirit descended upon Him and, after the baptism in the Jordan, drove him to confront Satan openly in the desert for 40 days before beginning His public mission. The tempter tries to lead Jesus away from the Father’s plan, that is, from the path of sacrifice, of the love that offers itself in expiation. He wants to lead Jesus down an easy road,…Continue Reading

Debunking The Sola Scriptura Myth… Luther, The Enemy Of The Bible?

March 15, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 6 I suppose that everyone knows that the Pentateuch is the five first books of the Old Testament, traditionally attributed to Moses as their author. What did Luther have to say about them? — “We have no wish either to see or hear Moses.” Only Moses? Oh, no. Here are his opinions on other books: “The book of Esther I toss into the Elbe. I am such an enemy of this book of Esther that I wish it did not exist, for it Judaizes too much and has in it a great deal of heathenish naughtiness.” “The history of Jonah is so monstrous that it is absolutely incredible.” “Esdras I would not translate, because…Continue Reading

The Creeds

March 14, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By DON FIER In last week’s column, we laid the groundwork to begin an in-depth exposition of what the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) teaches that we, as Catholic Christians, are called to believe: the one, true faith we profess in the Creeds of the Church. For it is in the formulas of the Creeds that, “through the centuries, in so many languages, cultures, peoples, and nations, the Church has constantly confessed this one faith, received from the one Lord, transmitted by one Baptism, and grounded in the conviction that all people have only one God and Father” (CCC, n. 172). Why is this so absolutely essential? Precisely, it is because “communion in faith needs a common language of faith,…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

March 13, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

Q. In Matt. 10:38, we read Jesus’ words, “and he who does not take up his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.” This is repeated in Mark 8:34 and Luke 9:23. The only reference to a cross that I could find in the Old Testament is in Gen. 40:19, where Joseph is interpreting a dream of the Pharaoh’s baker that within three days the Pharaoh will have the baker hanging on a tree and the birds will tear his flesh. Without any other particular history of the “cross” that the apostles and others at the time would have been familiar with, what would have been their understanding of taking up one’s cross? — L.E., via e-mail. A.…Continue Reading

Do Not Doubt God’s Presence

March 12, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Third Sunday Of Lent (YR A) Readings: Exodus 17:3-7 Romans 5:1-2, 5-8 John 4:5-42 In the first reading today we hear about the events that took place at Meribah in the desert where the people of Israel tested God and grumbled against Him because they did not have water to drink. Any of us could understand that if we were in the desert and we were out of water, we might be tempted to grumble against the Lord as well. Sadly, for so many people today it does not require being out in the desert and suffering from thirst before we complain against God. We complain about the smallest and most ridiculous things. We, too, seem…Continue Reading

The Time Of Lent . . . A Path To Holiness

March 11, 2014 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By MOST REV. DAVID M. O’CONNELL, CM (Editor’s Note: Bishop David M. O’Connell heads the Diocese of Trenton, N.J. This message to his flock on how to make a good Lent is reprinted here with permission. All rights reserved.) +    +    + When I was a boy growing up in a Catholic family, Lent was a big deal. Ash Wednesday was the beginning of a special time of the year unlike any other. My Mom, like her German mother before her, would make doughnuts on the Tuesday before — “Faschnaut Day” — clearing out kitchen cabinets and the icebox to make way for the forty days of sacrifice and penance that stretched out ahead of us. Those doughnuts were great…Continue Reading