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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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COMPLETE 3 PART Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Insights On The State Of The Church In The Aftermath Of The Ordinary Synod On The Family

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By DON FIER Part 1 (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, recently traveled from Rome to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., a magnificent place of worship which he founded and dedicated. (His Eminence graciously granted an extensive interview to The Wanderer during which he…Continue Reading

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Marco Rubio, David Daleiden; Chi-Town priest ‘outs’ himself

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Catholic Italy mobilises as conservatives mount last stand against same-sex unions

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TRUMP’S SPOKESWOMAN MUST APOLOGIZE

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2016 March for Life heats up blizzard-stricken Washington (PHOTOS)

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SPECIAL REPORT: Planned Parenthood Offices Located Near Half of Catholic Colleges, Alarming Pro-Life Leaders

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81 percent of Americans support dramatically stronger pro-life reforms: Poll

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New initiative aims to make Catholic men ‘watchmen’

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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 su
bscribe 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.

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A Powerful Weapon: 15 Quotes on the Holy Rosary

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There is a Catholic “man-crisis.” Large numbers of men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church and the majority of those who remain are “Casual Catholic Men”, men who do not know the Catholic faith and don’t practice it. This large-scale failure of Catholic men to commit themselves to Jesus Christ and His Church has contributed to the accelerating…Continue Reading

Today . . .

Pope’s Angelus reflection: Trust in the word of the Lord

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Pope: The Faith is the greatest inheritance we can leave

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The Pope: consecrated life must be close to the people

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Vatican City, 2 February 2016 (VIS) – The following are extensive extracts of the Holy Father’s extemporaneous address to the participants in the Jubilee of Consecrated Life, which took place yesterday in the Paul VI Hall. This afternoon in St. Peter’s Basilica he will celebrate the Mass to conclude the Year of Consecrated Life. “I have prepared a text for this occasion regarding the themes of consecrated life and three of its most important pillars:…Continue Reading

Pope Francis Says . . . Lent Is A Time Of Pruning And Reconciliation

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A Potpourri . . . To Be Is To Give, And Other Matters

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Blessed José Sanchez Del Rio… Miraculous Cure Of A Baby Leads To His Sainthood

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Begging For Mercy

By DONALD DeMARCO When we do not hear another person’s words correctly we say, “I beg your pardon.” A moderator appears on stage and apologizes for a momentary inconvenience by saying to the audience, “I beg your indulgence.” These words flow easily from our lips, usually without much reflection. They have become automatic responses, polite…Continue Reading

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Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Catholic Replies

Q. I understand that plenary indulgences are available during this Jubilee Year of Mercy if one passes through the “Holy Door of Mercy” in a Catholic cathedral and meets all the other conditions for an indulgence. But what if one has no opportunity to visit a cathedral? Can the plenary indulgence still be obtained? — P.D., via e-mail. A. Yes.…Continue Reading

Listening To Jesus

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The Year Of Consecrated Life Ends . . . Answering God’s Call And Proclaiming His Mercy

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A Leaven In The World . . . Jesus Gave Witness In The Public Square

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An Apologetics Course . . . Hostility Against The Church

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Catholic Heroes . . . St. Miguel Febres Cordero Munoz

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Catholic Heroes… Blessed Boleslava Maria Lament

By CAROLE BRESLIN The Catholic Church observes the Church Unity Octave from January 18 through January 25. For each day of the octave, we pray for a different form of unity. For example, on January 18, the intention is for the return of separated Eastern Christians to communion with the Holy See. Another day the intention is for the restoration…Continue Reading