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Recognizing Our Sinfulness

November 26, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Second Sunday Of Advent (YR A) Readings: Isaiah 1:1-10 Romans 15:4-9 Matt. 3:1-12 In the second reading today St. Paul tells us that what was written previously was written for our instruction that we might have hope through the encouragement of the Scriptures. He goes on to pray that God will grant the grace to think in harmony with one another in keeping with Christ. We need, first of all, to address the point of thinking in harmony with one another. St. Paul is not suggesting that he wants us all to be alike in our personalities and powers. In other words, he would not say that an engineer and an artist should think the same…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World . . . Pope Francis Seeks “Pastoral, Not Ideological” Bishops

November 24, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK (Editor’s Note: When space permits, Fr. Cusick will conclude his column with a Catechism reflection to go with the Sunday readings.) +    +    + Pope Francis by now is well known for short-round staccato bursts of teaching that can be as hard to parse as they are quick to say. One recent example is, “Sinners yes, corrupt no.” Without explanation someone might think he is approving of sin. In fact, Pope Francis is saying that we are all sinners and must seek forgiveness through the mercy of Christ while at the same time shunning all corruption, that is, appearing to be Christian while lacking the humility of repentance. His teaching in this area can be…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

November 23, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

Q. During the upcoming Christmas season, we are almost certain to have homilies describing the Blessed Virgin Mary as an unwed mother. What is the best way of describing Mary’s marital status, her relationship with Joseph, and her perpetual virginity? — J.D.H., California. A. The best way is to read carefully chapter 1 of Matthew’s Gospel, particularly where he says that when “Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the Holy Spirit. Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly” (Matt. 1:18-19). Notice that Matthew calls Joseph Mary’s “husband” and says that Joseph had decided to “divorce her…Continue Reading

Is The Rosary A Prayer Of “Vain Repetitions”?

November 22, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By RAYMOND de SOUZA, KM Part 4 The Pharisee and the publican — improvised prayer and repetitive prayer: “Two men went up to the Temple to pray, the one a Pharisee and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and began to pray thus within himself: ‘O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of men, robbers, dishonest, adulterers, or even like this publican. I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I possess’ ” (Luke 18:10-14). Let us notice that the Pharisee was wont to do what Jesus exhorted people to do in the Sermon of the Mount: Prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Those were undoubtedly very good deeds, but the Pharisee performed…Continue Reading

Divine Revelation: Gradual And Progressive

November 21, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By DON FIER We left off last week reflecting on God’s motive for revealing Himself to us in a supernatural manner. In a word, His sole motive was that of boundless love for mankind. God gratuitously and unconditionally chose to “communicate His own divine life to the men He freely created, in order to adopt them as His sons in His only-begotten Son” (CCC, n. 52). In the words of St. Paul, “[God] destined us in love to be His sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of His will” (Eph. 1:5) in order that it might be possible for mankind to satisfy the innate desire for happiness that is written into our hearts and that can only be…Continue Reading

Put On The Armor Of Light

November 20, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER First Sunday Of Advent (YR A) Readings: Isaiah 2:1-5 Romans 13:11-14 Matt. 24:37-44 In the second reading today St. Paul tells us that it is time to wake from sleep while Jesus, in the Gospel reading, tells us to stay awake. Obviously there is no way that a human person can remain awake in the physical sense, so we have to understand these statements spiritually. Perhaps we have been lulled into some spiritual sloth or into a false sense of security. It may be that some sort of worldliness has crept into our lives and has begun crowding out the Lord. Regardless of the “sleep” that has overtaken us, the Church is calling us to wake…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

November 16, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

Q. During the upcoming Christmas season, we are almost certain to have homilies describing the Blessed Virgin Mary as an unwed mother. What is the best way of describing Mary’s marital status, her relationship with Joseph, and her perpetual virginity? — J.D.H., California. A. The best way is to read carefully chapter 1 of Matthew’s Gospel, particularly where he says that when “Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the Holy Spirit. Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly” (Matt. 1:18-19). Notice that Matthew calls Joseph Mary’s “husband” and says that Joseph had decided to “divorce her…Continue Reading

Is The Rosary A Prayer Of “Vain Repetitions”?

November 15, 2013 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 3 The visit I received from two Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWs, for short) gave me the opportunity to demonstrate that repetitive prayer — especially the rosary — is entirely in line with Sacred Scripture. When they walked into my living room and did not miss the sight of my rosary on the mantelpiece, I knew only too well that they were itching to say something about it. And, as sure as death and taxes, one of them asked me if I was aware that prayer of repetition was “condemned by Jesus in the Bible.” In this article I’d like to provide more information I trust will be useful to Wanderer readers to use in their…Continue Reading

God Comes To Meet Man

November 14, 2013 Don Fier, Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By DON FIER Last week, a topic was taken up that was immediately addressed in the first chapter of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC): man’s capacity to know God by reason alone. It was demonstrated in two basic, commonsense ways that “by natural reason man can know God with certainty, on the basis of His works” (CCC, n. 50). The supporting arguments focused around what we can directly observe or easily discern in two of God’s most magnificent works of creation, “the physical world and the human person” (CCC, n. 31). This week, we will turn our attention to “another order of knowledge, which man cannot possibly arrive at by his own powers: the order of Divine Revelation” (CCC,…Continue Reading

Christ The Redeemer

November 13, 2013 Our Catholic Faith, Sunday Sermons Comments Off

The Solemnity Of Christ The King (YR C) Readings: 2 Samuel 5:1-3 Col. 1:12-20 Luke 23:35-43 There are two things in the readings today which we need to consider in the context of today’s Feast of Christ the King. The first point comes in the first reading where the people of Israel come to King David to ask him to reign as the King of Israel. At that time the Jewish people were divided into two kingdoms, Israel to the north and Judah to the south. David had been the king of Judah for about seven years, reigning in Hebron; now he was to be king of a united people with his kingship established in Jerusalem. What is important for…Continue Reading