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February 13, 2014 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

Q. A question in a recent edition renewed a bit of ire I have had for some time concerning Food For The Poor appeals for donations. How can any organization claim such greatly charitable work while paying out huge salaries? Mr. Mahfood earns $391,627 yearly, and I am not going into all the other paid employees. Their web site lists an income of $939.5 million and claims Mr. Mahfood’s salary is only .04 percent of all expenses (data from their web site). Is this “charity” using the poor for a very lucrative business? Is it honest to rake off such large sums for employees, even if it is a small part of the take percentage-wise? While I wish I could feed, care for, and hug every starving, sick, and needy child anywhere, I can’t contribute to this group.
Contrast the work of Help The Helpless in India. Now there is an organization that does great things on very little money. The Wanderer probably gets needed revenue from the Food For The Poor ads, but is this an honorable group to support? I would appreciate your thoughts on this sticky question. — C.T., via e-mail.
A. As far as we know, Food for The Poor is one of the most reputable charities in existence. We would never carry its ads, regardless of our need for revenue, if it were not reputable. If the salary mentioned is true, it doesn’t seem exorbitant to us in a world where, for example, the commissioner of the National Football League is paid $29 million a year. But if you find Mr. Mahfood’s salary troublesome, then by all means do not donate to the group. But as far as The Wanderer is concerned, we have not received any complaints about Food for The Poor.

Q. Why doesn’t God answer my prayers? — M.C., Massachusetts.
A. God answers all sincere prayers, but sometimes the answer is yes, sometimes it is no, and sometimes it is not right now. If you think back over your life, you will find that God has in fact answered many of your prayers in the way that you wanted. But on other occasions, He may not have given you what you asked for because what you were seeking might not have been in your best interest or in the best interest of a person for whom you were praying. For example, some folks pray to win the lottery, but we know from recent history that getting all that money has ruined the lives of some winners.
Sometimes we pray that a sick child will get well, but the child doesn’t. Does that mean God doesn’t care? Of course not. The God who sent His Son to die a brutal death on the cross out of love for us cares a great deal. But He doesn’t remove all pain and suffering from our lives. He invites us to share that pain and suffering with Him, and He will give us the strength to deal with it.
God is able to bring good out of pain and suffering, as He brought salvation out of Jesus’ death on the cross. Or think about all the good that disease or a natural disaster brings out of people.
We know a family who watched their 16-year-old daughter die of cancer, an awful thing to watch. But the many hours spent in her hospital room, praying and singing, laughing and sharing memories, brought that family together in a beautiful way. Of course they were sad to lose their daughter and sister, but as faith-filled believers they knew she was in a better place. They had prayed hard for her recovery, but when her death came they were glad that her suffering was over, and they looked forward to the day when they would see her again in a world where there will be no pain or suffering or death.
Jesus’ Resurrection from the dead, which foreshadowed the resurrection of our bodies at the end of the world, is the only answer to evil and suffering in the world that makes any sense. There is a story about a woman who asked to be waked with a fork in her hands. When the funeral director was asked about the significance of the fork, he said the woman had told him that every time she went to a banquet, they were always told to save their forks because something better was coming. “I want people who come to view my body,” she said, “to know that there is something better coming.”
The biggest mistake one can make is to stop praying when a particular prayer is not answered in a certain way. Jesus told us in the Sermon on the Mount to “ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you” (Matt. 7:7). So we must continue to pray constantly, humbly, and confidently, while at the same time recognizing, as Jesus did in the Garden of Gethsemane, that when our fervent prayers are not answered as we had hoped, we must say to the Father, as He did, “not my will but yours be done” (Luke 22:42).

Q. Do you know anything about the devotion to Our Lady Undoer of Knots? I heard about this recently and wondered if it is legitimate. — A.C., Florida.
A. We have seen a good explanation of this devotion in a pamphlet put out by Our Sunday Visitor entitled “Our Lady Undoer of Knots.” The pamphlet is available in bulk by calling OSV at 800-348-2440 or by e-mailing them at www.osv.com.
According to the pamphlet, which was written by Woodeene Koenig-Bricker, the devotion began back in the 17th century when a German married couple contemplating divorce handed a local priest the red ribbon that had “tied” them together on their wedding day. The priest held up the ribbon to a painting of Our Lady of Snows, untied it, and prayed that all the knots in their marriage would be “loosed and resolved.” The red ribbon changed to bright white, the story goes, and the couple’s marriage was saved.
When Pope Francis (then Fr. Jorge Mario Bergoglio) was studying in Germany in 1986, he saw a painting of our Lady untying the knots in a white ribbon. He bought a postcard with the image on it and, later, when he was a cardinal, he had the image engraved on a chalice which he presented to Pope Benedict XVI.
The image shows one angel handing Mary a white ribbon while another angel smoothes the ribbon at the other end. With the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove appearing over Mary’s head surrounded by twelve stars and eight angels, the Blessed Virgin is shown standing above a crescent moon and crushing a twisted serpent under her heel. This image, of course, recalls Rev. 12:1, which says that “a great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.”
Before becoming Pope, Cardinal Bergoglio introduced the devotion of Our Lady Undoer of Knots to the people of Argentina. The devotion then spread to Brazil and eventually to the entire Catholic world. It is now invoked by those needing Mary’s assistance to undo a variety of “knots” that impact people’s lives — marital trouble, loss of a job, sickness, loneliness, and other worries.
On October 12, 2013, Pope Francis said that “Mary’s faith unties the knot of sin,” which happens when we do not listen to God or follow His will. He said that “a kind of knot is created deep within us. These knots take away our peace and serenity. They are dangerous since many knots can form a tangle which gets more and more painful and difficult to undo.”
But, the Holy Father said, “nothing is impossible for God’s mercy! Even the most tangled knots are loosened by His grace. And Mary, whose ‘yes’ opened the door for God to undo the knot of the ancient disobedience, is the Mother who patiently and lovingly brings us to God, so that He can untangle the knots of our soul by His fatherly mercy.”

Q. If a person were taught by his parents that he was useless and would never amount to anything, does he commit a sin of disobedience by trying to accomplish things once he gets to be an adult? — G.P., Florida.
A. Certainly not. The sin belongs to his parents who failed to treat him as a child of God and who failed to give him the love and support and guidance that he needed to grow and mature into a responsible adult. While the Fourth Commandment obliges us to love, honor, and obey our parents, the obligation of obedience ceases if our parents ask us to do something immoral or, in this case, if they continually put us down and treat us as worthless, robbing us of our dignity.
If this person is able to overcome this emotional abuse and try to become the person God intended him to be, good for him. Let us pray for persons in this situation and for parents who mistreat and neglect the children given to them by God.

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Video: Biological males can stay overnight with female, but parents can’t be told, school officials say

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Vatican newspaper article: Pope’s apostolic exhortation is magisterial teaching

August 24, 2016 Writing in the Vatican newspaper, a Spanish ecclesiology professor said that Pope Francis’s apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia is part of the non-definitive ordinary Magisterium of the Roman Pontiff to which the faithful owe religious submission of intellect…Continue Reading

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Catholic school faculty member sues school after she’s fired for being gay

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Scottish Catholic Church denies supporting ‘mandatory’ LGBT activist school program

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Amid falling sales, Target responds to backlash with $20 million plan for single-stall bathrooms

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Transgender Bathroom Access Extended to All Federal Buildings–Including Prisons

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Satanic ‘Black Mass’ held in Oklahoma City

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Uplifting Story . . . Gymnast Simone Biles soars to Olympic gold while grounded in Catholic faith

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RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil, August 10, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — When three-time world champion gymnast Simone Biles flew to Rio de Janeiro for the Olympic Games, the 19-year-old carried a rosary her mother gave her and a St. Sebastian medal from…Continue Reading

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  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 145 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

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This Weeks Comments And Letters . . .

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “An Introduction To The Problem Of Euthanasia”

By BRIAN CLOWES Part 2 (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of chapter 23 of The Facts of Life, a 150-page treatise on all of the aspects of euthanasia, e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.) + + + We have covered the definitions of the varieties of…Continue Reading

Today . . .

For David Daleiden, Soros money shows Planned Parenthood in a panic

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Why this diocese is ditching Common Core for liberal arts

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By KATHLEEN NAAB The Diocese of Baton Rouge, La., is welcoming assistance as so many thousands of people have lost homes or property and many have been killed in the massive flooding affecting the state. “The historic flooding that has taken place has impacted nearly every corner of our diocese, and our parishes and schools are struggling to recover in an effort to provide for the spiritual and educational needs of their parishioners and students,”…Continue Reading

Catholic Politician Defends Abortion, Says Catholic Church Doesn’t Think Unborn Babies are People

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With Different U.S. Policies… Imagine The Possibilities In Africa

By FR. SHENAN BOQUET (Editor’s Note: Fr. Shenan Boquet is the president of Human Life International. He and Brian Clowes, HLI’s director of research and training, recently went on a pro-life mission to Tanzania; see the article on the front page of The Wanderer, August 18, 2016. In the article below, Fr. Boquet thanks all…Continue Reading

Restoring The Sacred… “The Expense Is Reckoned, The Enterprise Is Begun; It Is Of God”

By JAMES MONTI The recent slaughter in odium fidei of the 85-year-old French priest Fr. Jacques Hamel on July 26 shortly after two terrorists stormed into the church where he was celebrating the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is a vivid manifestation that the price for being a faithful Catholic has been rapidly escalating of…Continue Reading

Summer 1916 . . . The Second Apparition Of Angel Of Portugal

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ISIS And Other Useful Fictions

By JUDE P. DOUGHERTY Islamic State (ISIS or Daesh) and al-Qaeda are useful fictions. “Islamicist” is another ill-used word. Has anyone ever identified the borders of the so-called Islamic State, identified the site of its central government, attributed to it a president, prime minister, cabinet, parliament, or congress, or anything resembling such? Even the most…Continue Reading

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Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

The Mystagogy Of The Celebration Of Baptism

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Catholic Replies

Q. Can you possibly provide the name and e-mail address of the bishop of the “renowned” Catholic Vice President Joe Biden? This latest mockery of his faith — officiating at the “marriage” of two men — cries for some type of action from the shepherd of his flock. I would like to be able to communicate my concern to the…Continue Reading

Prepare For Eternal Life

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Divine Mercy And Justice

By Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke Part 2 (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke delivered the address below at the Consecration Weekend, The Marian Catechist Apostolate, Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, La Crosse, Wis., July 23, 2016. Because of its length, we are publishing it in two parts; part 1 appeared in last week’s issue. And also because…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World… Moral Outrages Mount While Bishops Snooze

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK The U.S. bishops’ conference is a leadership disaster. Joe Biden presiding over the marital simulation ceremony of two men who work in the Obama administration was the latest unanswered provocation to assail the American portion of the Body of Christ. Vice President Biden has completely sold-out on Church teaching. He enthusiastically promoted the rainbow revolution…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Euphrasia Eluvathingal

By CAROLE BRESLIN In 1605 Fr. Robert De Nobili, a Jesuit priest, arrived in India to evangelize the people. He found them to have a noble bearing and a deeply spiritual life filled with fasting, prayer, and meditation. Difficulties presented themselves to him as he struggled to convert them: “If these people did not see me do such penance, they…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Joseph Of Cupertino

By CAROLE BRESLIN Now that the school year has begun, students — especially Catholic students — will find recourse to their favorite patron saint of studying. Some may choose St. Thomas Aquinas or St. Augustine of Hippo. For those students who find it difficult to retain what they read and write about it, perhaps this saint will encourage them: St.…Continue Reading