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Catholic Replies

January 8, 2016 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

Editor’s Note: Regarding a recent reply about usury, the following comments were sent by Dr. Anthony Santelli, a former professor of economics at George Mason University: “I have been reading your excellent column Catholic Replies for countless years. The December 10, 2015, issue of The Wanderer is the first time you have made a grave error. Your response to a question on usury is incorrect on several levels, and I was hoping that you would take the time to deepen your understanding of this important issue by reading this e-mail and the attached article. “The traditional definition of usury is the charging of any interest, not excessive interest. Fifteen years ago, I too believed that only excessive interest was disapproved…Continue Reading

Earthen Vessels

January 7, 2016 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Second Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR C) Readings: Isaiah 62:1-5 1 Cor. 12:4-11 John 2:1-11 In the Gospel reading today, we hear about the miracle at Cana where our Lord turned the water into wine. Have you ever stopped to think about what He did, just on the practical level? He made between 120 and 180 gallons of wine. I guess the wedding feast was going to continue for quite some time. On the more gross level, He used the vessels in which people washed their hands. There is no mention of scrubbing the vessel and washing it out before they refilled it with water. But even this little detail becomes very important. If you had…Continue Reading

Pope Francis To The Curia . . . Here Are The Virtues Necessary For Those Who Serve

January 6, 2016 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

(Editor’s Note: Below is the full text of Pope Francis’ address to members of the Roman Curia in the Vatican the morning of December 21. ZENIT News Agency distributed the text, which came from Vatican Radio. All rights reserved.) + + + Dear brothers and sisters, I am pleased to offer heartfelt good wishes for a blessed Christmas and a happy New Year to you and your co-workers, to the papal representatives, and in particular to those who in the past year have completed their service and retired. Let us also remember all those who have gone home to God. My thoughts and my gratitude go to you and to the members of your families. In our meeting in 2013,…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World . . . David Brooks And Oprah: Two Approaches To God

January 4, 2016 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK “Inside every overweight woman is a woman she knows she can be.” Weight loss commercials start up again in earnest every year as soon as the Christmas sales tail off. Oprah, the queen of weight loss as well as pretty much every other self-help program, features most recently in one of these ads wherein she appeals to the real woman inside of every woman fighting obesity or simply wanting to shed a few pounds. She assigns virtue to every time she tried and failed and tried again to lose weight and become once again that inner person she envisions and desires to be. David Brooks recently published a book calling for a return to character…Continue Reading

An Apologetics Course… The Catholic Church Is The Church Of Christ: More Evidence

January 3, 2016 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 35 The Church of Jesus Christ is Universal (“Catholic”). She is the “Teach-all-Nations” Church of Jesus Christ. Faithful Catholics the world over want to convert everybody, yes, everybody, every Tom, Dick, and Harriet must be called to the fullness of truth, which is founded in the Catholic Church, and the Catholic Church alone. The Catholic Church can never be satisfied with retaining her own members, and leaving the rest of mankind alone. No. Christ commanded the apostles to evangelize, not to ecumenize. Faithful to the earnest commandment of her divine Founder, the Catholic Church wants to convert everybody, and is already present in virtually every continent, race, language, and culture. This is a very…Continue Reading

Devotion To Mary

January 2, 2016 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By DON FIER The Blessed Virgin Mary, as we observed last week, is not only “a pre-eminent and singular member of the Church” (Lumen Gentium [LG], n. 53) and the mother of the Body of Christ “in the order of grace” (LG, n. 61). She is also an outstanding type and model of the Church. St. John Paul II, during his general audience of August 6, 1997, beautifully encapsulates this remarkable teaching of the Vatican II fathers regarding our Lady: “By defining Mary as a type of the Church, the Council invites us to see in her the visible figure of the Church’s spiritual reality and in her spotless motherhood, the announcement of the Church’s motherhood. . . .[Mary] is…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

January 1, 2016 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

Q. What did St. Paul mean in 2 Cor. 12:16 when he said, “I was crafty and got the better of you by deceit”? — G.P., Florida. A. Here is the explanation given in the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible New Testament: “Suspicions were apparently raised that Paul was mishandling the funds of the Jerusalem collection (chaps. 8-9). Critics probably accused him of secretly pocketing some of the money for himself, even though he appeared to live in poverty while among them (11:9). These accusations were empty: Paul’s conscience was clear (1:12) because his conduct was irreproachable (4:2). See note on 2 Cor. 8:21.” The latter footnote says that Paul sent a delegation of trusted disciples — Titus and two unnamed…Continue Reading

The Victory Of Justice

December 31, 2015 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Baptism Of The Lord (YR C) Readings: Isaiah 42:1-4, 6-7 Titus 2:11-14, 3:4-7 Luke 3:15-16, 21-22 In the first reading today, we hear from the first of Isaiah’s four “Suffering Servant Songs.” In this song it is revealed that the Servant, the Messiah, is to establish justice. We are told that he will bring forth justice to the nations, that his work will not end until he establishes justice on the earth, and that he is called to the victory of justice. One of the mysterious aspects of the way God works is that in the spiritual life things are just the opposite of the way they are on the natural level. For instance, the victory…Continue Reading

An Apologetics Course . . . Finding The True Church: The Branch Theory

December 27, 2015 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 34 So far we have studied the origin, doctrines, and form of government of various church organizations that claim to be the Church of Jesus Christ. One knows for certain that they cannot be such as a group, since there are visceral contradictions among them. The so-called branch theory, whereby certain churches calling themselves “Christian” would be branches of a main vine (which would supposedly be Jesus Christ), is just a myth. Jesus founded one Church, and one only. But why is the “branch theory” a myth? The idea came from a group of Anglicans that emerged at the time of the “Oxford Movement” (1833-1845). They belonged to the High Church, whose rituals bear…Continue Reading

Mary, Type And Model Of The Church

December 26, 2015 Our Catholic Faith Comments Off

By DON FIER As has been established over the past two weeks, the Church’s teaching that Mary is “Mother of the Church” is deeply rooted in Scripture and Tradition. Although the formal title is of recent origin, it has been implicit in magisterial teaching for many generations. Nowhere can it be more profoundly perceived than in the words of our dying Savior to His Sorrowful Mother at the foot of the cross: “Woman, behold your son!” (John 19:26). “That filial gesture, full of messianic meaning, went beyond the person of the beloved disciple, designated as the son of Mary,” stated St. John Paul II during his general audience of November 23, 1988. “Jesus wished to give Mary the mission of…Continue Reading