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August 23, 2019 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

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Q. When a friend saw me coming out of Mass on the Feast of the Assumption, she asked why Catholics believe in the Assumption since the word does not appear in the Bible. What could I have said to her? — A.M.G., via e-mail.
A. You might have said that not everything Catholics believe is explicitly mentioned in the Bible. For example, you won’t find the words “Trinity” or “Purgatory” in the Bible, but there is clear evidence in Scripture for both of these doctrines. Neither will you find mention of the Immaculate Conception of Mary, which means that she was free from original sin from the moment of her conception in the womb of her mother, St. Anne. This dogma is not explicitly stated in Scripture, but it can be inferred from the words of the Angel Gabriel, who addressed our Lady as “full of grace” (Luke 1:28).
If Mary was full of grace at the time of the angel’s visit, then she was full of God’s divine life and completely free from all sin, including original sin. Jesus granted her this privilege because He wanted to be born of a pure and sinless mother.
Our belief in the Assumption of Mary into Heaven is a corollary to the dogma of the Immaculate Conception. The reasoning behind this other Marian dogma is that, since Mary was free from original sin, and the corruption of the grave is a consequence of that sin, she did not suffer that corruption. It is not unreasonable to think that Jesus would want His Mother to share in His bodily glorification since it was her body that sheltered Him for nine months.
Publicly stated belief in this doctrine can be traced back at least to the sixth century, when St. Gregory of Tours wrote that the Lord Jesus came to Earth at the end of Mary’s life and commanded that her holy body “be taken in a cloud into Paradise, where now, rejoined to the soul, it rejoices with the Lord’s chosen ones, and is in the enjoyment of the good of an eternity that will never end.”
While the Church from her earliest days believed in the bodily Assumption of Mary into Heaven, it was not until 1950 that Pope Pius XII, after consulting with bishops all over the world, infallibly proclaimed as a divinely revealed dogma that “the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever-Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.”
There is an interesting sidelight to this in that the Holy Father also witnessed, like the thousands of people in Fatima, a miracle of the sun just before and after his proclamation of the Assumption. He said that he observed this solar phenomenon four times — on October 30 while walking in the Vatican gardens, on October 31 and November 1, the day he defined the dogma, and on November 8, but never again. Perhaps our Lady was showing her approval for Pius XII’s action by granting him a miracle similar to the one in Fatima on October 13, 1917.

Q. One thing that has puzzled me is why people who say they are against abortion don’t want pictures shown of what happens to the baby in an abortion. They say the pictures are too gruesome and will turn people off. Can you give me an answer to this objection? — M.C., Florida.
A. Having been in the pro-life movement for a long time, we have never been persuaded by this argument. If not showing pictures of aborted babies is the way to bring about an end to abortion, why does the abortion total continue to go up? What has the polite approach accomplished since Roe v. Wade in 1973? How many babies have been saved? How many on the “pro-choice” side have had their minds changed by sparing them the horrible pictures?
It reminds us of being told by sincere pro-lifers not to use the word “murder” when talking about abortion because that was too harsh a word. The dictionary defines murder as killing a human being “unlawfully and with premeditated malice.” But isn’t that what abortion really does? And no Supreme Court decision can make murder legal, anymore than the court was right when it made slavery and segregation legal.
It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. That was certainly true during the civil rights protests of the sixties. How many people were influenced by seeing demonstrators hit with fire hoses or menaced by dogs? Or think of the effect that pictures had on the American people during the height of the Vietnam War. Who can forget the photo of the naked little girl running down the streets of Saigon, or the policeman shooting a man in the head? Pictures like these helped to turn the American people against the war.
What do you think would happen if more people knew exactly what the word “abortion” means, and what an aborted child looks like? Difficult as it may be to believe, a lot of people still have no idea of what abortion really is. This atrocity is sanitized with such euphemisms as “termination of pregnancy” or “reproductive health care.”
When popular author and speaker Ben Shapiro was asked at a college event what he thought the best debate tactic against a pro-abortion person would be, he responded: “Show them a picture of a dead baby. End of story.”
These pictures might be “uncouth,” said Shapiro, but “they’re true. The fact is that people have a ‘You Ruined My Day Syndrome,’ which is that they don’t want to see things that are ugly in everyday life, and if you show them things that are ugly, they get upset. Well, you have to make people feel not morally superior for wanting to kill kids — and these are kids.”
He recalled walking past a pro-life exhibit at the 2012 Democratic Convention, and “they were there with these pictures of aborted babies. And I walked past and thought what most people from big cities thought — ‘Wow, how gauche!’ I mean, those are ugly pictures; should I really have to look at that in the public square? That’s really ugly, and then I realized that’s probably how people treated pictures of slavery back in the 1850s; that’s probably how people treated pictures of the Holocaust in the 1940s.
“The bottom line is that maybe if it’s that ugly, you should do something about it instead of whining about how ugly it is. It’s not a matter of personal choice. I have a stake in whether my neighbor gets murdered, and I have a stake in whether my neighbor’s baby gets murdered, too.”

Q. Regarding the question of what to do with religious items when someone is cleaning out their home, my mother’s house had an abundance of old Bibles, statues, rosaries, etc. Because I thought many of them had been blessed, I did not want them to get into the hands of someone who might misuse them. I was able to give them to a priest, who assured me that he would place them in a casket at a funeral, and they would be buried with the deceased person. I understand that this is proper, especially for torn or broken religious items. — M.A.M., via e-mail.
A. Thank you for your suggestion. Thank you also to those who wrote in with suggestions in answer to the original letter about disposition of religious items. We forwarded your names to the reader who asked for help.

Q. In a recent column, you addressed the question of the meaning of the Archangel Michael’s name (“who is like God”) as if “who” in the English translation was a relative pronoun. I am pretty sure it is an interrogative pronoun, the name being, like many Hebrew names, a whole sentence, translatable as “Who is like God?” So the question of in what way Michael is like God does not arise. Many artistic depictions of him show him with a shield inscribed “Quis Sicut Deus?” — A.W.T., via e-mail.
A. Thank you for your comments.

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22,000 people showed up in Virginia to protest an infringement on their Constitutional rights

No buildings vandalized

No journalists attacked

No cops were harassed

Some in the media call these patriots domestic terrorists

Yet they refuse to say the same about ANTIFA


His Eminence, @cardinalrlburke will be marching for life with the @GuadalupeShrine group in #WashingtonDC this week, giving public witness to the inviolable right to life! #MarchForLife #CatholicTwitter 👶🏼👶🏻👶🏽👶🏾👶🏿🤰🏻🤰🏼🤰🏽🤰🏾🤰🏿

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Catholic parish will not host Episcopalian consecration

Richmond, Va., Jan 17, 2020 / 11:30 am (CNA).- The Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia will no longer hold a bishops’s consecration at a Catholic parish in Williamsburg, after an internet petition objecting to the event drew national attention. “It…Continue Reading

Cardinal Dolan conducting ‘Vos estis’ investigation into Brooklyn’s Bishop DiMarzio

New York City, N.Y., Jan 18, 2020 / 09:05 pm (CNA).- Cardinal Timothy Dolan is conducting an investigation into Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, following an allegation of sexual abuse. The investigation is being conducted under the provisions of Vos estis lux…Continue Reading

Theodore McCarrick has moved from Kansas friary

Denver, Colo., Jan 7, 2020 / 11:00 am (CNA).- The disgraced former cardinal Theodore McCarrick has moved from the Kansas friary where he had been living since 2018. A spokesman for the Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Conrad told CNA…Continue Reading

Vatican Archbishop: those who say Judas is in hell are ‘heretics’ and priests may ‘accompany’ assisted suicides

ROME, December 11, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — In a statement difficult to reconcile with Scripture and Tradition, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, President of the Pontifical Academy for Life, has claimed on behalf of the Catholic Church that anyone who says Judas Iscariot is in…Continue Reading

Buffalo’s Bishop Richard Malone resigns after year of scandal

Vatican City, Dec 4, 2019 / 04:01 am (CNA).- Pope Francis Wednesday accepted the resignation of Buffalo’s embattled Bishop Richard Malone. The Diocese of Buffalo will be administered by Albany’s Bishop Edward Scharfenberger until a permanent replacement for Malone is…Continue Reading

Chinese bishop says Catholics must put ‘love for homeland’ first

Beijing, China, Dec 3, 2019 / 04:30 pm (CNA).- A Chinese bishop has said that Catholics in the country must put their loyalty to the state before the faith. Bishop John Fang Xingyao made the statement during a Communist Party…Continue Reading

Canada’s largest newspaper: Catholic schools must back LGBT ‘rights’ or risk losing public funding

TORONTO, November 25, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — Canada’s largest newspaper threatened Catholic schools in an editorial that unless they get in line with homosexuality and transgender “rights,” support will only grow for an end to their public funding. The Toronto Star’s…Continue Reading

Pope compares politicians who persecute gays, Jews to Hitler

Pope Francis denounced the persecution of gay people on Friday and compared public officials who stoke hatred and anti-gay sentiment to Hitler. Francis delivered his remarks at an international conference on criminal law at the Vatican City, Reuters reported. “It is…Continue Reading

7-year-old whose mom tried to ‘transition’ him chooses to attend school as a boy

DALLAS, Texas, November 5, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Seven-year-old James Younger, whose mother enrolled him in kindergarten as a “girl,” has finally been able to attend school as a boy for the first time. James’ parents’ fight over whether he should…Continue Reading

Cardinal Dolan on Biden communion denial: ‘I wouldn’t do it’

Washington D.C., Oct 31, 2019 / 04:58 pm (CNA).- Cardinal Timothy Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York has responded to questions about the denial of Holy Communion to former Vice President Joe Biden last Sunday. On an Oct. 31…Continue Reading

Judge blocks Alabama law banning abortions, pro-lifers plan to appeal to Supreme Court

October 29, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Alabama’s ban on virtually all abortions will not take effect on November 15 as planned, thanks to a preliminary injunction issued Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson. In May, Alabama Republican Gov. Kay Ivey signed the Alabama…Continue Reading

Biden denied communion at South Carolina church over abortion stance, report says

Democratic front-runner Joe Biden was reportedly denied communion by a priest at a South Carolina Catholic church over the weekend. Biden, a lifelong Catholic, stopped by Saint Anthony Catholic Church in Florence on Sunday, but was denied Holy Communion by Father Robert E. Morey,…Continue Reading

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Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Discriminating Mercy: Defending Christ And His Church With True Love


  By DON FIER (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and Founder of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., graciously took time out of his busy schedule to grant The Wanderer a wide-ranging interview during a recent visit to the Shrine. Included among the topics…Continue Reading

Developing Lives Of Peace After The Heart Of Mary

By RAYMOND LEO CARDINAL BURKE (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke delivered the address below at the 32nd Annual Church Teaches Forum, “The Message of Fatima: Peace for the World,” Galt House, Louisville, Ky., July 22, 2017. The address is reprinted here with the kind permission of Cardinal Burke. All rights reserved. This is part one of the…Continue Reading


Today . . .

President Trump Will Attend March for Life in Person, First President Ever to Join Pro-Lifers


President Donald Trump will address the March for Life on Friday in live remarks to hundreds of thousands of pro-life people attending the event from across the country. He will be the first president ever to attend the March for Life in person, having addressed the March via video previously. March for Life officials told they were delighted President Trump is demonstrating his commitment to pro-life values by appearing in person –joining half a…Continue Reading

Bishop Strickland says he asked pope about McCarrick report

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Bishop Joseph E. Strickland of Tyler, Texas, said he asked Pope Francis about the Vatican investigation into Theodore E. McCarrick and the release of a promised report on how the former cardinal managed to rise through the church ranks. The bishop, who was making his “ad limina” visit to Rome, drew widespread attention in August 2018 for a public statement saying he found “credible” the allegations made by retired Archbis

Catholic League blasts bill on clergy abuse, accuses lawmaker of trying to ‘police the sacraments of the Catholic Church’

SALT LAKE CITY — A group dedicated to defending the Catholic Church and its traditions is blasting a lawmaker for a bill that essentially removes the clergy exemption for reporting disclosures of abuse. “You are treading on dangerous territory,” Bill Donahue, the group’s president, wrote in a letter obtained by FOX 13. “When the government seeks to police the sacraments of the Catholic Church — or encroach on the tenets of a


Benedict XVI .: I am not co-author of Sarah’s book

Vatican City, January 14, 2020 (CAP) Benedict XVI has distanced itself from the authorship of the book on priesthood and celibacy, which Cardinal Robert Sarah published. Archbishop Georg Gänswein, private secretary of Benedict XVI, told the Catholic news agency Kathpress in Rome on Tuesday that, at the request of the pope emeritus, Sarah called early Tuesday morning to ask the publisher to remove Benedict XVI’s name and picture. prompt from the book cover. The signature…Continue Reading


The Facts… About The Controversial New Book By Both Cardinal Sarah And Benedict XVI

  By FR. JOHN T. ZUHLSDORF (Editor’s Note: Fr. John T. Zuhlsdorf posted the following on his January 15 blog at It is reprinted here with permission. Please visit his blog for the links he mentions in his text.) + + + Edward Pentin has posted at the National Catholic Register [blog dated January…Continue Reading

An NFL Owner’s Final Victory

By TERENCE P. JEFFREY (Editor’s Note: Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor-in-chief of Creators Syndicate,, distributes his column.) + + + Fr. Bill McGuire was sitting in the upper level of the press box at Kezar Stadium watching his hometown team play the Chicago Bears. Things were not going well. The 49ers fumbled…Continue Reading

Seth Meyers Likes Neo-Nazi Tactics

By BILL DONOHUE (Editor’s Note: Catholic League President Bill Donohue commented on remarks made January 13 by Seth Meyers on his NBC show.) + + + Brooklyn has been hit with a wave of anti-Semitic attacks, and no one uses this as a pretext to make light of them. A Catholic church in Brooklyn was…Continue Reading

Bishop Sheen Comes To My Home Town

By DONALD DeMARCO The 1960s counterculture movement did much to undo many traditional social values, especially those regarding personal relationships and human community. It served as a kind of stage rehearsal for the 1970s, which Tom Wolfe aptly dubbed “The Me Decade.” Andrew Lloyd Webber’s rock opera, Jesus Christ Superstar, launched the decade which gave…Continue Reading

A Book Review . . . Learning The Little-Known Life Story Of Bishop Schneider

By JAMES BARESEL Christus Vincit: Christ’s Triumph Over the Darkness of the Age by Bishop Athanasius Schneider and Diane Montagna, Angelico Press, 2019. Available at It would be all too easy for a reviewer of Bishop Athanasius Schneider’s Christus Vincit: Christ’s Triumph Over the Darkness of the Age to limit himself to predictable reflections…Continue Reading


Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Focus On The Light

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Third Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR A) Readings: Isaiah 8:23-9:3 1 Cor. 1:10-13, 17 Matt. 4:12-23 In the first reading today, Isaiah tells us that “God first degraded the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali,” but then tells us everything is turned around for the people in these lands and that “the people who…Continue Reading

Cardinal Pell Transferred To New Maximum-Security Prison

MELBOURNE, Australia (CNA) — George Cardinal Pell has reportedly been transferred out of the Melbourne prison in which he has been incarcerated for more than a year after a drone illegally flew over the prison grounds. According to the Herald Sun newspaper, Pell was moved out of Melbourne Assessment Prison after a drone flew over the prison garden in an…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: In an effort to promote eucharistic adoration, we published the following article in our parish bulletin. Feel free to use it in your own parish. Come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord. These familiar words from a Christmas carol remind us of our obligation to offer adoration to the Lord. To be sure, we are also to…Continue Reading

God Wants Us To Be Great Saints

BY FR. ROBERT ALTIER Second Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR A) Readings: Isaiah 49:5-6 1 Cor. 1:1-3 John 1:29-34 In the Gospel reading today we have two statements by St. John the Baptist regarding the identity of Jesus. First, he states that Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. Second, he testifies that…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World… Parents Are The First And Best Teachers

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK The option to home-school is the overwhelming trend among our traditional Catholic families. Why? They want to have larger families if able, usually more than the social minimum of two or three, out of a deep adherence to the faith and its integral practice. Tuition at Catholic schools is increasingly prohibitive under the budgetary strain…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Maria Cristina Of The Immaculate Conception

By CAROLE BRESLIN As Mother Teresa of Calcutta said, “God does not require that we be successful, only that we be faithful.” This could certainly describe the setbacks of so many saints before they finally achieved their heart’s desire. St. Maria Cristina certainly had her share of disappointments and setbacks, but she always began again. Nunc coepi. On May 1,…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Henry De Osso

By CAROLE BRESLIN Over the centuries, Spain has yielded many saints for the Roman Catholic Church. At the beginning of the fourth century, St. Maginus was martyred. In the twelfth century, there was St. Raymond of Penafort. In addition, the great sixteenth-century Carmelites, St. John of the Cross and St. Teresa of Avila, made matchless contributions to spirituality. In the…Continue Reading