Thursday 24th July 2014

Home » Our Catholic Faith » Currently Reading:

Catholic Replies

January 23, 2014 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

Editor’s Note: In a column a few weeks ago, we wondered if “political correctness” had something to do with the omission in the Mass readings of verses 26 and 27 of the first chapter of the Letter to the Romans, where St. Paul delivered a devastating condemnation of homosexual behavior.
One of our readers, G.T.G. of Maine, posed this question to the U.S. Bishops’ Secretariat of Divine Worship and was told by Associate Director Fr. Dan Merz that the omission was the work of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in Rome. Fr. Merz said that the revised introduction to the Lectionary published in 1981 included the following paragraph:
“77. The omission of verses in readings from Scripture has at times been the tradition of many liturgies, including the Roman liturgy. Admittedly such omissions may not be made lightly for fear of distorting the meaning of the text or the intent and style of Scripture. Yet on pastoral grounds it was decided to continue the traditional practice in the present Order of Readings, but at the same time to ensure that the essential meaning of the text remained intact. One reason for the decision is that otherwise some texts would have been unduly long. It would also have been necessary to omit completely certain readings of high spiritual value for the faithful because those readings include some verse that is pastorally less useful or that involves truly difficult questions.”
We don’t have a problem with this general principle, but we wonder who made the specific decision to omit verses 26 and 27. Like G.T.G., we fail to see how these verses would make the reading “unduly long,” and we agree with him that “it is absolutely necessary that vital instruction from the Scriptures on sexual purity not be omitted at Mass in these morally trying times,” especially when “we are facing a long march through the institutions of our culture by a militant, aggressive U.S. homosexual juggernaut.”

Q. I continue to be a Catholic by choice for many years but, with the current attacks on faith, I lack an answer on one issue and will appreciate your comments. There is beyond question one true God of creation, who created this world and universe, but how do we respond to those who say in effect that He cannot exist because who created Him? And can we really say that He always existed? — R. P., New Hampshire.
A. No one created God. He already existed from all eternity and is responsible for bringing everything else into existence. We surmise this because when we look around the world, we cannot find anything that was not caused by something else. If there ever were a moment at which nothing existed, nothing could ever exist, and it doesn’t help to extend the line of causes back indefinitely. The only conclusion we can reach is that at the beginning of the line there was an uncaused cause, something that already existed and was not caused by something else. That Uncaused Cause we call God.
In their Handbook of Christian Apologetics, Peter Kreeft and Ronald K. Tacelli, SJ, offer 20 arguments for the existence of God, including “the argument from change.” Noting that the material world is in a constant state of change, the authors say that “nothing changes itself,” but must be acted upon by some outside agent. “The whole universe is in the process of change,” they say, “but we have already seen that change in any being requires an outside force to actualize it. Therefore, there is some force outside (in addition to) the universe, some real being transcendent to the universe. This is one of the things meant by ‘God’ (p. 50).”
Kreeft and Tacelli sum up the argument from change this way:
“Briefly, if there is nothing outside the material universe, then there is nothing that can cause the universe to change. But it does change. Therefore, there must be something in addition to the material universe. But the universe is the sum total of all matter, space, and time. These three things depend on each other. Therefore, this being outside the universe is outside matter, space, and time. It is not a changing thing; it is the unchanging Source of change” (pp. 50-51).

Q. I notice that the advertisement placed by Food for the Poor in the December 12 edition of The Wanderer quoted Job 24:8, NIV. However, the advertisement placed in the January 16 edition does not specify the translation used for the quotation of Jer. 1:4-5a — i.e., no mention of NIV. For the reason mentioned in my letter to Food for the Poor, I began to wonder whether Food for the Poor is a trustworthy organization. I noticed, of course, that FFTP’s ads in The Wanderer show Oscar Andres Cardinal Rodriguez Maradiaga, of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, as a member of the board of directors for FFTP.
But I wonder, does FFTP highlight its apparent endorsement by Cardinal Rodriguez Maradiaga in advertisements sent out generally, by U.S. mail or in publications whose intended audience is Protestant? I would like to give money to FFTP, but I wonder whether you have any additional information about the group as to its suitability for donations. — J.G.B., Alabama.
A. The NIV is the New International Version translation of the Bible. Food for the Poor’s translation of Job 24:8 is essentially the same as the Catholic New American Bible translation, which reads: “They are drenched with the rain of the mountains, and for want of shelter they cling to the rock.” The translation of Jer. 1:4-5a in the January 16 Wanderer, presumably from the NIV, is exactly the same as the NAB: “The word of the Lord came to me thus: Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.”
J.G.B.’s concern, as expressed in his letter to FFTP, is that the NIV translation of other verses in the Bible reflects the Protestant interpretation rather than the Catholic interpretation (on the word “tradition,” for example), and he wonders if it is appropriate for Catholics to contribute to the group. As can be seen from the two citations above, however, there is virtually no difference between the NIV and the NAB on these verses.
Now if FFTP were quoting in their ads Bible translations that contradicted the Catholic understanding of certain Scripture verses, then The Wanderer would not take the ads and knowledgeable Catholics would not contribute to the group. But that is not the case with these ads, and we see no reason for Catholics not to donate to the work of Food for the Poor.

Q. An article in The Wanderer a few months ago said that in France attempts were being made to change the wording of the Our Father from “lead us not into temptation” to “do not let us fall into temptation.” Wouldn’t it be a good idea to change the English to “do not let us yield to temptation”? — E.G., Florida.
A. You know, of course, that God would never lead anyone into temptation. As St. James has told us: “No one experiencing temptation should say, ‘I am being tempted by God’; for God is not subject to temptation to evil, and he himself tempts no one. Rather each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire” (James 1:13-14).
The confusion arises because temptation can mean two different things: an inducement or enticement to evil, or a trial or test of faith. It is the latter meaning that Jesus had in mind when He taught us the Our Father, and this is illustrated in recent NAB translations of the Lord’s Prayer in Matt. 6:13 and Luke 11:4, both of which read, “do not subject us to the final test.” This is also emphasized in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (n. 2863):
“When we say ‘lead us not into temptation’ we are asking God not to allow us to take the path that leads to sin. This petition implores the Spirit of discernment and strength; it requests the grace of vigilance and final perseverance.”
When we pray this petition, said Pope Benedict in his book Jesus of Nazareth, we are saying to God: “I know that I need trials so that my nature can be purified. When you decide to send me these trials, when you give evil some room to maneuver…then please remember that my strength only goes so far. Don’t overestimate my capacity. Don’t set too wide the boundaries within which I may be tempted, and be close to me with your protecting hand when it becomes too much for me” (p. 163).

Share Button

Comment on this Article:

Marco Rubio To Take On Abortion and Gay Marriage in Catholic U Speech

Senator Marco Rubio (R., Fla.) plans to take on social and cultural issues in the latest installment of his policy speeches outlining a new conservative agenda. “Senator Rubio will discuss the values needed for economic success in the 21st century: values like…Continue Reading

USCCB Chairmen Respond To ‘Unprecedented and Extreme’ Executive Order

The executive order prohibits “gender identity” discrimination, a prohibition that is previously unknown at the federal level, and that is predicated on the false idea that “gender” is nothing more than a social construct or psychological reality that can be…Continue Reading

Dallas-Fort Worth Catholic leaders appeal for legal help in border crisis

Dallas Bishop Kevin Farrell (center) and Fort Worth Bishop Michael Olson on Monday asked for volunteers to assist with a “humanitarian crisis.” By DIANNE SOLÍS Staff Writer dsolís@dallasnews.com Published: 21 July 2014 10:32 PM Updated: 22 July 2014 12:21 AM Dallas Catholic…Continue Reading

Iraq Catholic leader says Islamic State worse than Genghis Khan

By Dominic Evans and Raheem Salman BAGHDAD (Reuters) – The head of Iraq’s largest church said on Sunday that Islamic State militants who drove Christians out of Mosul were worse than Mongol leader Genghis Khan and his grandson Hulagu who…Continue Reading

CHRISTIAN HOLOCAUST UNDERWAY IN IRAQ, USA AND WORLD LOOK ON

When U.S. troops invaded Iraq in 2003, there were at least 1.5 million Christians in Iraq. Over the last ten years, significantly in the last few months with the emergence of ISIS, that figure has dropped to about 400,000. In a…Continue Reading

Vancouver Catholic Schools Adopt Transgender Policy

James Keller, The Canadian Press Published Wednesday, July 16, 2014 7:20PM EDT Last Updated Thursday, July 17, 2014 7:24AM EDT VANCOUVER — Catholic schools in Vancouver have adopted a policy that could allow transgender students to use the pronouns, uniforms…Continue Reading

New Catholic Bishops Say Civil Disobedience OK If For Common Good

Newly appointed auxiliary bishops, two Catholic clergymen suggest Occupy Central could be just, while third weighs in on reform report St Two auxiliary bishops newly appointed by the Vatican have spoken out about the Occupy Central campaign, saying the church supports…Continue Reading

Skeptics And The Claims Of The Catholic Church Seventeen Reasons Scoffers Ought To Rethink Catholicism, If They Really Thought About It

July 11, 2014 05:09 EST By Thomas M. Doran In today’s world, isn’t it crazy to appeal to scoffers to consider Catholicism? Why would a rational modern man or woman in the 21st century be attracted to what the world and…Continue Reading

The Obama Administration’s Border-Crisis Plan B: Use the Catholic Church

The federal government reaches out to a California diocese to help shelter illegal immigrants in California. By Ryan Lovelace In order to avoid future clashes with the citizens of Murrieta, Calif., over attempts to transfer illegal immigrants there, the Obama administration has turned to…Continue Reading

A New Low For Liberals: Attacking Catholic Nuns Over Hobby Lobby

I’m a big fan of absurdity in politics. But even absurdity has its limits, and the National Organization for Women has surpassed it in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision inBurwell v. Hobby Lobby. As part of its full-throated…Continue Reading

Louisiana court’s ruling that Catholic priest testify about confession criticized by Baton Rouge Diocese:

The Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge has issued a statement decrying a decision by the Louisiana Supreme Court that could compel a local priest to testify in court about confessions he might have received. The alleged confessions, according to legal documents, were made to…Continue Reading

Out Of Nowhere A Network Emerged To Save Catholic Schools

By Martha Woodall, Inquirer Staff Writer POSTED: June 24, 2014   The fledgling Independence Mission Schools network of Catholic elementary schools is used to moving fast. It sprang into action two years ago to save 14 parish schools in low-income neighborhoods…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our new website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for over 145 years in our weekly print edition. Now we are introducing the online daily version of our print journal.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to subscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  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.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

'From our friends at The Foundry'


Pope Francis . . .

Pope Francis calls Patriarch in solidarity with Iraqi Christians

2014-07-23 Vatican Radio (Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis has reassured the Patriarch of the Syriac Catholic Church Ignatius Youssef III Younan that he is following news out of Iraq with concern, particularly the dramatic situation of Christians in Mosul who have been threatened with death and seizure of their homes by Islamic militants demanding they leave or convert to their form…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “Profile: Girls Scouts Of America”

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of this article with footnotes, e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.) +    +    + We’ve all had little girls in uniform appear on our porches selling Girl Scout cookies (with watchful mothers standing…Continue Reading

Chilling

By ANDREW P. NAPOLITANO “Chilling” is the word lawyers use to describe governmental behavior that does not directly interfere with constitutionally protected freedoms, but rather tends to deter folks from exercising them. Classic examples of “chilling” occurred in the 1970s, when FBI agents and U.S. Army soldiers, in business suits with badges displayed or in…Continue Reading

Do They Think We’re Stupid?. . . It’s Worse Than That

By JAMES K. FITZPATRICK It has become routine to hear conservative talk radio hosts, such as Mark Levin and Rush Limbaugh, as well as many commentators on Fox News, react to public comments by the Obama administration and its supporters with an exasperated, “Do they think we’re stupid?” I have in mind Obama supporters’ contentions…Continue Reading

Facing The Truth About Abortion

By REY FLORES “America will not reject abortion, until America sees abortion” — Fr. Frank Pavone, Priests for Life. +    +    + One thing I have often said about abortion is that you cannot sugarcoat it no matter how hard you try. It is a monstrous and criminal act against the most defenseless of human…Continue Reading

Following Proper Requirements

By DEXTER DUGGAN It was the beginning of July, and new waves of unauthorized immigration were in the news. For his Fourth of July homily, a priest at a large Southwestern U.S. church soft-spokenly noted the Catholic Church’s foundational moral stands and its view of politics. The Church favors limited government, he said, but there’s…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Anglophone Conference On Sexual Abuse . . . “The Entire Church Is Called To Put Right What Has Happened”

By MOST REV. DIARMUID MARTIN ROME (ZENIT) — Below is the full text of an address given by Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin on the issue of clerical sex abuse. The address was given July 7 at the Anglophone Conference, which took place at the Pontifical Irish College in Rome. The Anglophone Conference takes place annually and its purpose is to address relevant…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World . . . Journalists, Atheists, And The Pope

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK The bureaucratic apologists are now in full scramble mode once again to interpret the Pope’s words as filtered to the whole world through the atheist journalist Eugenio Scalfari and printed in the paper he co-founded, La Repubblica. Yet again, we are informed, the Pope did not say what we are told he said. The fact…Continue Reading

Is The Rosary A Prayer Of “Vain Repetitions”?

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…Continue Reading

The Obedience Of Faith

By DON FIER For the past ten weeks of this series, we’ve been unpacking the teaching of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) on how God comes to meet man through His divine Revelation. As the Catechism, citing Dei Verbum (DV), so beautifully expresses it, “the invisible God, from the fullness of His love, addresses men as His friends,…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Q. It has been a while since it was decided to permit openly homosexual boys into the Boy Scouts, but not a word for an official position on Catholic-affiliated troops. I wonder why? In the meantime, I fear many boys will be in great danger. Why no statement from our bishops on this very critical issue? — R.B.K., Virginia. A. In…Continue Reading

Cast A Gauntlet – Sola Scriptura: Part 1

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Alphonsus Liguori

By CAROLE BRESLIN Part 1 Fr. John A. Hardon, SJ, having read the works of St. Alphonsus Liguori, took him as a mentor. It is not surprising, then, that Fr. Hardon taught his students, “If you are not encountering the cross, you are not doing God’s work.” Such were the lives of saints such as St. Teresa of Avila, St.…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Benedict

By CAROLE BRESLIN Every month the Apostleship of Prayer publishes the intentions of the Holy Father: one for a universal intention and one for an evangelical intention. In June 2014, the evangelical intention was that Europe may rediscover its Christian roots through the witness of believers. The advent of Christian civilization coincided with the advent of Western civilization. The Benedictine…Continue Reading

What to Do If Your Boyfriend Wants You to Get an Abortion?

by Krisi Burton Brown | Washington, DC | LifeNews.com | 2/20/14 4:00 PM Washington, DC (LiveActionNews) — Note: This article is for any girl or woman who is feeling pressured into having an abortion. If you are a guy who is trying to find out how to stop an abortion, please see this article written for dads. 1.  Stand your…Continue Reading

It’s Time to Build Schools, from the Ground Up

February 13, 2014 by Anthony Esolen   It might have been worth repairing, if it had once been noble and beautiful, or at least conceived in an orderly way, for ordinary human purposes. But it wasn’t. It was constructed upon false principles. Its walls looked like those of a bad factory. It smelled like a warehouse. It could be terribly…Continue Reading

Why I am Pro-Life

February 4, 2014   Pro-Lifers   By Therese Recinella   Editor’s note. This tribute was posted on Therese Recinella’s Facebook account. She is graciously allowing us to reprint it in NRL News Today.   There are many things that I could say about my Dad, but what I want people to know is this: My parents faithfully raised 8 children…Continue Reading

Fathers . . . The Essential Role of the Father

Posted on February 10, 2014 by The Catholic Gentleman 13 Comments   Divorce rates skyrocketing; adultery rampant; non-married cohabitating couples; children abandoned by their fathers or mothers; “same-sex unions” adopting children and calling this the “modern family”; pornography invading homes, leading to powerful addictions and total alienation from other members of the family: all of this is a bird’s eye view…Continue Reading

How Much is One Billion Dollars?

This article appeared in the March 20, 1941 issue of The Wanderer. (Well, 70 years later we can add 15 trillion into the example.) Here’s a simple and homely illustration of what one billion dollars amounts to: Suppose we take an imaginary boy, aged 15 years, and assign to him the task of counting one billion dollars in one-dollar bills.…Continue Reading

Planned Parenthood

This article appeared in The Wanderer, April 3, 1941.  (WOW, Look what we have 70 years later.) A group which calls itself the National Committee for Planned Parenthood has begun a nationwide campaign to have the promotion of birth control included in State and national health programs. The committee—which, according to propaganda sheets reaching our desk has a branch in…Continue Reading

Questions of Non-Catholics . . . Answered by Father Richard Felix, O.S.B.

Reprinted from The Wanderer April 10, 1941 Why Does God allow us to be tempted? God allows us to be tempted so that we may prove our attachment to him and merit a higher place in heaven. Temptations are the lot of all men; they are the battle ground upon which heaven is won or lost. “The kingdom of heaven…Continue Reading