October 20, 2011

Let Us Pray

Anima Christi

This well known Catholic prayer dates to the early fourteenth century and was possibly written by Pope John XXII. Anima Christi means "the soul of Christ." It is popularly believed to have been composed by St. Ignatius Loyola who put it at the beginning of his "Spiritual Exercises." However, the prayer was in manuscripts written a hundred years before his birth.

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O Good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds hide me.
Suffer me not to be separated from thee.
From the malignant enemy defend me.
In the hour of my death call me.
And bid me come unto Thee,
That with all Thy saints,
I may praise thee
Forever and ever. Amen
This prayer may be variously worded depending on its translation from the Latin.

October 16, 2011

Genesis - "In the beginning" Part II

In our last post on Genesis we talked about how the sin of Adam had thrown everything out of balance. The world was no longer a temple as it was before. Man had literally fallen out of God's grace. He was now estranged from God though not entirely. God promises to send a redeemer to save man and defeat evil once and for all. (More on this in a later post.) Last but not least, man's relationship with man and with woman was forever transformed. Brother would fight against and kill brother. Marriage would no longer be predicated on love. Instead, the battle of the sexes had begun. This was not part of God's original plan but a consequence of original sin.

"In the beginning," Adam was charged with protecting the Garden and everything in it - including Eve. Man was supposed to tend the Garden, reap its fruits and defend it against the very evil he would succumb to. Adam was standing next to Eve as the snake tempted her. The idea that a "mere garden snake" tempted man away from God is very misleading. The Hebrew word translated as snake in the book of Genesis is the same word used to describe fearsome monsters in other parts of the Old Testament.

Adam was afraid. His first sin wasn't eating the fruit. It was failing to protect Eve.

October 13, 2011

Thought of the Day

Concerning God, we cannot grasp what He is, but only what He is not, and how other beings stand in relation to Him.

-- St. Thomas Aquinas

October 11, 2011

Act of Reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

O Sacred Heart of Jesus, animated with a desire to repair the outrages unceasingly offered to Thee, we prostrate before Thy throne of mercy, and in the name of all mankind, pledge our love and fidelity to Thee.

The more Thy mysteries are blasphemed, the more firmly we shall believe them, O Sacred Heart of Jesus!

The more impiety endeavors to extinguish our hope of immortality, the more we shall trust in Thy Heart, sole Hope of mankind!

The more hearts resist Thy Divine attractions, the more we shall love Thee, O infinitely amiable Heart of Jesus!

The more unbelief attacks Thy Divinity, the more humbly and profoundly we shall adore It, O Divine Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy holy laws are transgressed and ignored, the more we shall delight to observe them, O most holy Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy Sacraments are despised and abandoned, the more frequently we shall receive them with love and reverence, O most generous Heart of Jesus!

The more the imitation of Thy virtues is neglected and forgotten, the more we shall endeavor to practice them, O Heart, model of every virtue!

The more the devil labors to destroy souls, the more we shall be inflamed with desire to save them, O Heart of Jesus, zealous Lover of souls!

The more sin and impurity destroy the image of God in man, the more we shall try by purity of life to be a living temple of the Holy Spirit, O Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy Holy Church is despised, the more we shall endeavor to be her faithful children, O Sweet Heart of Jesus!

The more Thy Vicar on earth is persecuted, the more will we honor him as the infallible head of Thy Holy Church, show our fidelity and pray for him, O  kingly Heart of Jesus!

O Sacred Heart, through Thy powerful grace, may we become Thy apostles in the midst of a corrupted world, and be Thy crown in the kingdom of Heaven.  Amen.

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen's Prayer to our Lady of Guadalupe for the Unborn in Danger of Abortion

When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth, filled with the holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice saying, "Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.
Prayer for the Unborn in Danger of Abortion

Prayer for the unborn baby by Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen to our Lady of Guadalupe Intercessor for the Unborn
Jesus Mary and Joseph;
I love you very much,
I beg you to spare the life
of the unborn baby
that I have spiritually adopted;
who is in danger of abortion - Amen
Say this prayer each day for one year and a child in danger of abortion will be saved.

October 10, 2011

St. Athanasius

Thought of the Day

Devils take great delight in fullness, and drunkeness, and bodily comfort.
Fasting possesses great power and it works glorious things.
To fast is to banquet with angels.

-- St. Athanasius.

October 8, 2011

12 Claims Every Catholic Should Be Able to Answer

There is a tremendous article written by Deal Hudson entitled "12 Claims Every Catholic Should Be Able to Answer." He discusses answering questions like: “There’s no such thing as absolute truth. What’s true for you may not be true for me,” “Christianity is no better than any other faith. All religions lead to God,”and “The Old and New Testaments contradict one another in numerous places. If an omnipotent God inspired the Bible, He would never have allowed these errors,” among others.

October 7, 2011

Thought of the Day

Our Lord and Savior lifted up his voice and said with incomparable majesty: "Let all men know that grace comes after tribulation. Let them know that without the burden of afflictions it is impossible to reach the height of grace. Let them know that the gifts of grace increase as the struggles increase. Let men take care not to stray and be deceived. This is the only true stairway to paradise, and without the cross they can find no road to climb to heaven." When I heard these words, a strong force came upon me and seemed to place me in the middle of a street, so that I might say in a loud voice to people of every age, sex and status: "Hear, O people; hear, O nations. I am warning you about the commandment of Christ by using words that came from his own lips: We cannot obtain grace unless we suffer afflictions. We must heap trouble upon trouble to attain a deep participation in the divine nature, the glory of the sons of God and perfect happiness of soul."

-- St. Rose of Lima

October 6, 2011

Review: The End and the Beginning -Pope John Paul II - The Victory of Freedom, the Last Years, the Legacy

The End and the Beginning -Pope John Paul II - The Victory of Freedom, the Last Years, the Legacy

In this sequel to Witness to Hope, author George Weigel, examines the beginning of John Paul II priestly life in the last months of his pontificate. What emerges in his portrayal is the resoluteness and personal courage of Karol Wojtyla in the face of great adversity and physical suffering. It is revealed that the harassment and internment of Catholic priests during the Nazi and Communist regimes in Poland were not lost on the young Wojtyla. As he began his priestly formation we learn how Communist authorities spied on Wojtyla as a rising star in the Catholic Church. Weigel outlines the future pope’s intellectual pursuits, the development of his thought, and the genesis of his growth into a world class philosopher. What shines through in this biography is the humility and fortitude that Wojtyla exhibited throughout his life.

The End and the Beginning – John Paul II is a must read for any Catholic interested in the life of the late pontiff. I learned a great deal about John Paul that I did not know previous to reading the book. I was unaware of the extent to which he suffered physically. The sex abuse scandal that emerged in the United States and elsewhere was the source of much anguish and emotional suffering for John Paul as he sought to resolve the crisis. The adversity he faced as a underground seminarian and young priest are also chronicled in full. Wojtyla never wavered in the face of challenges or for fear of anguish, disappointment, or personal persecution.

George Weigel is a brilliant Catholic thinker and writer. He brings Karol Wojtyla alive as someone who knew and was befriended by Wojtyla and as someone who studied John Paul’s life assiduously. Weigel weaves historically relevant background information into his narrative. He places John Paul’s thought, actions, and papacy in their historical context. The love of John Paul for his fellow human beings is evident throughout the End and the Beginning. The future John Paul II was a saint from the very beginning.   

This review was written as part of the Catholic book reviewer program from The Catholic Company. To find more information on The End and the Beginning - Pope John PauL II visit The Catholic Company. They are also a great source for a Catechism of the Catholic Church or a Catholic Bible

Thought of the Day

O Catholic Church, true mother of Christians, you are right in teaching that God should be adored with an entirely chaste and pure heart. You unite all brothers and sisters to one another in a bond of religion that is stronger and closer than ties of blood.

-- St. Augustine

Video: The Dream 2010 (Watch/Share!)

H/T to the American Papist for alerting me to this video. It encourages all citizens especailly Catholics to get involved in the political process and to vote their conscience on issues concerning life.

October 5, 2011

October is Our Lady of the Rosary Month

Our Lady Of The Holy Rosary Novena Prayer

My dearest Mother Mary, behold me, your child, in prayer at your feet. Accept this Holy Rosary, which I offer you in accordance with your requests at Fatima, as a proof of my tender love for you, for the intentions of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in atonement for the offenses committed against your Immaculate Heart, and for this special favor which I earnestly request in my Rosary Novena: (Mention your request).

I beg you to present my petition to your Divine Son. If you will pray for me, I cannot be refused. I know, dearest Mother, that you want me to seek God?s holy Will concerning my request. If what I ask for should not be granted, pray that I may receive that which will be of greater benefit to my soul.

I offer you this spiritual Bouquet of Roses because I love you. I put all my confidence in you, since your prayers before God are most powerful. For the greater glory of God and for the sake of Jesus, your loving Son, hear and grant my prayer. Sweet Heart of Mary, be my salvation.

October 2, 2011

Oct 2: Feast of Guardian Angels

This is the traditional Catholic prayer to one's guardian angel.

Angel of God, my guardian dear
to whom God's love commits me here.
Ever this day/night be at my side
to light, to guard, to rule and guide.

Whether guardian angels attend each and every person is not consistently believed or upheld by the Church Fathers in Christian thought, and hence is not an "article of faith", although the concept is clearly seen in both the Old and New Testaments. According to St. Jerome the concept is in the "mind of the Church" and he stated that: "how great the dignity of the soul, since each one has from his birth an angel commissioned to guard it."

The first Christian theologian to outline a specific scheme for guardian angels was Honorius of Autun in the 12th century. He said that every soul was assigned a guardian angel the moment it was put into a body. Scholastic theologians augmented and ordered the taxonomy of angelic guardians. Thomas Aquinas agreed with Honorius and believed that it was the lowest order of angels who served as guardians, and his view was most successful in popular thought, but Duns Scotus said that any angel might accept the mission.

Centuries later, in his 1997 Regina Caeli address, Pope John Paul II referred to the concept of guardian angel twice, and concluded the address with the statement: "Let us invoke the Queen of angels and saints, that she may grant us, supported by our guardian angels, to be authentic witnesses to the Lord's paschal mystery".

October 1, 2011

Pope admits 'no answer to suffering' in TV interview

More than 3,000 questions were submitted after the initiative was announced a month ago, of which seven were chosen and put to the 84-year-old pontiff.

The Pope, speaking from his office in the Apostolic Palace in the Vatican, admitted there was no answer to why humans have to suffer as he responded to a question from a seven-year-old Japanese girl who was caught up in the tsunami. She asked why so many children had to suffer in natural calamities.

"I ask myself the same question," the Pope said. "We don't have the answers, but we know that Jesus suffered as innocent children suffer."