Crossed The Tiber

An Evangelical Converts to Catholicism

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I was born into the Catholic faith. At 14, I was "born again" and found Jesus personally but lost His Church. After thirty years as an evangelical protestant, I have come full circle to find that He has been there all the time, in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. I wish others to find the beauty and truth of the Catholic faith as I have found.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Praying the Mass

Jeff Pinyan has officially released his new book Praying the Mass. Go to
to read reviews and purchase. Here's my review of it posted earlier on CTT.

"The book is entitled "Praying the Mass-The Prayers of the People"
Just reading a few chapters quickly I can tell you it is easy to read and "unpacks" the Mass for you. The Mass is the highest form of worship we have here on earth and Jeff illuminates it for us in great detail. He annotates each section with Scripture so you can see where the particular part of the liturgy is derived. Not only does he provide a great understanding of the current translation of the Mass, but discusses the gestures and postures that accompany the Mass. His chapter on the Sign of the Cross is worth the price of the book alone. I suspect this book will become a favorite of RCIA teachers and catechists who desire to help their students develop a true Eucharistically-centered understanding of the Mass. If I had been taught from a book like this in 1973, there is a fair chance I may not have left the Church!"

Nice job Jeff! May the Lord bless your work to help others see the beauty of the Mass and fall deeper in love with Jesus through an understanding of the divine liturgy.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Lost and Found -Episode One. Avatar Apologetics

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Sneak Preview of "Way to Emmaus"

In honor of St. Augustine and Monica, I am offering a free download of the first track on the new CD. I received the mastered CD back from the production company on the feast of St. Monica. (God loves to do that kinda stuff for us for us)
Here is Late Have I Loved You, based on some of Augustine's writings and my own journey back to the Church, A beauty so ancient, Yet ever New.
Like they say on the street: "The first one's free kid."

Mona and Auggie

This was such a busy week, I had little time to write about St. Augustine and his mother St. Monica. Here's a little true story about how Mona and Auggie touched my life even as far back as 35 years ago!

When I was 15 years old and newly"born again" (my 2nd conversion) I worried so much about my parent's salvation. I prayed daily for their salvation, left tracts around the house, dragged my Dad to see the Corrie TenBoom movie, the Hiding Place(he fell asleep and snored). I witnessed to my mother pretty much all the time for a few years and even got her to pray the sinner's prayer once (She had been drinking at the time, so I wasn't sure "it took").
A few years later, my Dad was diagnosed with serious heart disease and I became very burdened that he would die without knowing the Lord. Someone from my fellowship told me about a Christian lady named Monica who prayed for her son for 15 years that he would become a Christian and God answered her prayers because her son became a devout and famous believer. That gave me hope as I counted how many years I had been praying and thought "there's still time and hope." No one told me that these two Christians were Catholics and saints in the Church!
My Dad did pass away when I was 28 and I never knew whether he ever made a "commitment to Christ. " Knowing he went to Mass and according to my mother went to confession regularly, I can now say he did make a "commitment to Christ." I just didn't understand at the time the sacramental life of Catholics and therefore assumed he was just "going through the motions " and bound for hell. How was I to judge? He was not a saint but obviously he kept trying, which is what we all continue to do as we work out our salvation with fear and trembling.
In retrospect, I now believe that it's partly through the intercession of my late Dad and Mom and Saint Augustine and Monica that I have come back to the Church. What a full circle!

A St. Monica Quote:

"The only thing I ask of you is that you make remembrance of me at the altar of the Lord."
(cf Confessions of St. Augustine)

Friday, August 28, 2009

Pithy Quotes From St Augustine

Today the Church celebrates one of her best and brightest. St. Augustine the 5th Century bishop was late to come to repentance but made up for lost time . He spoke out against and helped to extinguish several heresies that were threatening the orthodox teachings of the Church.

Here are some of my favorite St. Augustine Quotes:

"That Bread which you see on the altar, having been sanctified by the word of God IS THE BODY OF CHRIST. That chalice, or rather, what is in that chalice, having been sanctified by the word of God, IS THE BLOOD OF CHRIST. Through that bread and wine the Lord Christ willed to commend HIS BODY AND BLOOD, WHICH HE POURED OUT FOR US UNTO THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS." (Sermons 227)

"The Lord Jesus wanted those whose eyes were held lest they should recognize him, to recognize Him in the breaking of the bread [Luke 24:16,30-35]. The faithful know what I am saying. They know Christ in the breaking of the bread. For not all bread, but only that which receives the blessing of Christ, BECOMES CHRIST'S BODY." (Sermons 234:2)

"What you see is the bread and the chalice; that is what your own eyes report to you. But what your faith obliges you to accept is that THE BREAD IS THE BODY OF CHRIST AND THE CHALICE [WINE] THE BLOOD OF CHRIST." (Sermons 272)

“I would not believe the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not compel me.”

The only quote from St. Augustine I knew as a Protestant was "love God and do what you want" I even started to write a song based on that, but never read any further about him, nor finished the song. Now what's with that? What if I came across those other writings of his as above?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dominican Sisters of Mary

A religious order that can't expand fast enough to house all the women signing on. Amazing what God is doing in the Church among the orthodox religious!

Here's a Democrat I Would Have Voted For

From a letter to Mr. Thomas Donnelly of Great Neck, NY, dated August 3, 1971.

Dear Mr. Donnelly:

I appreciate your letter containing your views on abortion. There are many moral and legal aspects arising from this complex issue which is gaining the acceptance of large numbers of women faced with unwanted pregnancies, while disturbing the consciences of a great many other Americans.

Opponents maintain that abortion is wrong from every theological, moral and medical aspect. Proponents are firmly convinced that the woman, alone, has the right to decide.

While the deep concern of a woman bearing an unwanted child merits consideration and sympathy, it is my personal feeling that the legalization of abortion on demand is not in accordance with the value which our civilization places on human life. Wanted or unwanted, I believe that human life, even at its earliest stages, has certain rights which must be recognized -- the right to be born, the right to love, the right to grow old.

On the question of the individual's freedom of choice there are easily available birth control methods and information which women may employ to prevent or postpone pregnancy. But once life has begun, no matter at what stage of growth, it is my belief that termination should not be decided merely by desire.

I share the confidence of those who feel that America is willing to care for its unwanted as well as wanted children, protecting particularly those who cannot protect themselves. i also share the opinions of those who do not accept abortion as a response to our society's problems -- an inadequate welfare system, unsatisfactory job training programs, and insufficient financial support for all its citizens.

When history looks back to this era it should recognize this generation as one which cared about human beings enough to halt the practice of war, to provide a decent living for every family, and to fulfill its responsibility to its children from the very moment of conception.


Edward M. Kennedy

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

100,000 Catholics Come Home- An Apostolic Movement


August 24, 2009 – Atlanta, GA. Founder and President, Tom Peterson appeared in multiple stories on FOX NewsChannel to discuss the much hyped “Pew Study,” issued in April 2009. The Pew Study reported that about half of American adults change religious affiliation at least once during their lives. “Some Christians are drawn to faith communities that promote an ‘a la carte’ practice of faith, while others are lured out of religious practice altogether by the perceived glamour of secularism,” says Peterson. By using compassionate commercials that motivate viewers to visit our interactive website, Catholics Come invites inactive Catholics and others to the sacraments found only in the universal Church Jesus started 2000 years ago.” Peterson went on to explain that, “ messages also minister to people who are struggling with faith, helping them to find the answers, hope and peace that only comes from a relationship with Jesus.”

Catholics Come Home, Inc. is a lay Catholic organization faithful to the Church’s teachings. It creates effective and compassionate media messages and broadcasts them nationally and internationally to inspire, educate and evangelize inactive Catholics and others to come home to our faith family. Results from initial television campaigns show that the commercials are also motivating existing Catholics to share their faith with their friends, relatives and neighbors. Additionally, it appears that 25% of the web visitors are potential converts looking for a faith family and church home.

Peterson’s international apostolate has already touched millions of souls around the world, welcoming them back home to the Catholic Church. In addition, Catholics Come reaches out to people of other faiths to help them discover the sacraments, beauty, truth and accomplishments of the Catholic Church, which helped build Western Civilization.

According to Catholic News Service (CNS), parishes in the Diocese of Phoenix reported a 12 percent increase in weekly Mass attendance that still continues long after the commercials aired. The television initiative and web site were directly responsible for bringing nearly 100,000 inactive Catholics and converts home to the Church during Lent 2008.

The Diocese of Corpus Christi, Texas, experienced similar success with its 2009 bi-lingual ( Catholics Come campaign, where initial results show a 17.7 percent increase in weekly Mass attendance throughout 38 surveyed parishes. Interestingly, Hispanics responded at nearly the same rate to the Spanish language commercials and web site.

These consistent results have motivated a dozen other archdioceses and dioceses throughout the United States to partner with to launch campaigns in their areas during the upcoming seasons of Advent and Lent. These include: the Archdioceses of Chicago, Atlanta, Omaha and Seattle, and the Dioceses of Sacramento, Colorado Springs, Lincoln, Green Bay, Rockford, Joliet, Charlotte, Providence and Venice (FL).

The momentum of has now extended internationally into Australia where Peterson recently returned from a national media conference followed by the Plenary meeting with Cardinal Pell and the 44 Bishops of Australia. They are discerning implementation of on their continent. It appears that the Archdiocese of Brisbane may be the first international archdiocese to launch the campaign.

“No creative marketing team could possibly yield these miraculous results,” Peterson concludes. “This is truly an apostolic movement designed and directed by the Holy Spirit. Our invitation is simple: ‘We are Catholic. Welcome Home’.”

Abandonment: The Way to Holiness

When I was a young born again Christian, there was a teaching going around that you can have anything you want and do anything you want because you are a "child of the King" and therefore entitled to experience the "riches" of His kingdom. A book called "How To Live Like A King's Kid" promoted this and everyone jumped on the bandwagon, for a time until the next "new thing" came down the pike. But alas, the next "new thing" was invariably an old recycled " new thing."
But there are some teachings in Christianity that remain as old as the apostles themselves, but don't sell lots of books and often don't get on the bestseller lists. One of these is the concept of abandoning oneself to God. Self surrender to His will. My wife started reading Fr. Jean Pierre de Caussade Abandonment to Divine Providence before she was Catholic and it sowed the seeds for her conversion back to the Church. At the time it seemed like such a foreign concept since we were from a background that had been influenced by the health and wealth teachings, but this truth started to resonate with her, and the rest is history as they say.

"O all you who thirst, learn that you have not far to go to find the spring of living waters! It springs forth quite close to you in the present moment. Therefore hasten to approach it. Why, with the spring so near, do you tire yourselves running after shallow brooks which only tease your thirst? They measure stingily the water they give us, while only the spring itself is inexhaustible. If you wish to think, write and talk like Apostles, prophets and saints, abandon yourselves as they did to God's inspiration. O Love unknown! Men think that your wonders are past and finished, and that all we can do is copy the ancient volumes and quote Your words out of the past! And we do not see that Your unceasing action is an infinite source of new thoughts, new sufferings, new works, new patriarchs, new prophets, apostles, new saints, who have no need to copy each others lives or writings, but only to live in perpetual self-surrender to Your secret operations. We like to speak of "the first ages of the Church - the times of the saints." Are not all times the effect of God's action, the working of His divine will, including all moments, filling them, sanctifying them and making them supernatural? Has there ever been a method of self-surrender to God's will which is not still practicable? Did the saints from the earliest ages have any other secret of holiness than that of becoming what God's will was seeking to make them from moment to moment? And will this operation not continue even to the end of time to pour out its grace on those who give themselves unreservedly to it? Yes, dear eternal Love! Love eternally fruitful and full of wonder! Yes, Will of God! You are my book, my doctrine, my knowledge. In You are my thoughts, my words, my deeds, my crosses. It is not by consulting Your other works that I can become what You would make me, but only by accepting You in all things, in that one royal way, that ancient way, the way of our fathers, the way of self-surrender to Your will. I will think like them, speak like them, be enlightened as they were. In this way, I will imitate them, quote and copy them in everything." Father Jean-Pierre de Caussade - The Joy of Full Surrender

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

New Pro Life Film

Monday, August 24, 2009

Veterans Getting the Heave Ho!

Do you think all the talk about Obamacare pushing rationing and euthansia is just right wing hype?
Obama has taken out of the mothballs a 'end-of-life workbook" for veterans authored by a gentleman who is a proponent of physician assisted suicide and health care rationing. President Bush refused to allow the guide to be distributed to the veterans in the VA health system.
Check out this op-ed in the Wall Street Journal regarding President Obama's treatment of Veterans in the VA system. Very scary.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Inquisition: Historical Context is Everything

Often a discussion with a non-Catholic about the Church comes to a grinding halt when the non-Catholic brings up the evil carried out by the Catholic Church during the Inquisition (there were actually several inquisitions, some of which were instigated by civil, not Church authority, but I digress)

To fully understand the Inquisition and the Church's role in meting out punishment for heresy, one must understand the events in their historical context. It is truly unfair to judge the Catholic Church for its actions during the inquisitions without first looking at the contemporary history in which they occurred.

"Do remember that we are not dealing here with modern day Western nations where there was a clear separation between church and state. Religion was inseparable from politics. Church and state were mingled and both rulers and the common man felt that a common religion was absolutely critical to the maintenance of order. In the sixteenth century heresy was a common charge and heresy of the magnitude expressed by many heretics was almost always punishable by death. It may be helpful to draw people’s attention to the Old Testament where God not only approved of, but commanded, the destruction of entire nations. Surely this would seem atrocious to modern readers, and surely God would no longer command it today, yet at the time it happened it was common practice. The times change. We see evidence of this as well in the New and Old Testaments where believers owned slaves, another practice we would consider abominable and unfitting for Christians.

Paul Henry, a notable historian, writes: The Church's conduct was not determined by personal feeling; it was the consequence of a struggle which these heretics had carried on for years against tendencies to a corruption of doctrine which threatened the Church with ruin. Every age must be judged according to its prevailing laws; and the Catholic Church cannot be fairly accused of any greater offense than that with which we may be charged for punishing certain crimes with death.” The Catholic Church was right to take action. The horrid inevitability was that in this time and place heresy was a civil offense and one punishable by death."

I believe this is a fairer way to see the role of the Catholic Church in the Inquisition. Wouldn't you agree?

Even more interesting is that the above comments were actually by a blogger who was attempting to justify Calvin's behavior for having his old friend Dr. Servetus executed on his arrival to Geneva. I just took out Calvin's name and inserted Catholic Church and replaced Servetus with the word these heretics or many heretics in the above essay. We see that, indeed, historical context is a useful tool to better understand the events of the past that are often used to paint the Church in a negative light.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

What Would You Have Written on the Pope's Cast?

Pope Benedict had his cast and pins removed from his right wrist. Hopefully he will be able to play piano again. Even more importantly, he will be able to catch up on his writing which he does all by hand! Actually, he has been using a digital recorder to work on his sequel to Jesus of Nazareth.

I wonder, what would you write if you had been able to sign the Pope's cast?

Friday, August 21, 2009

American Health Care Reform - A Good End Does Not Justify Evil Means

American Health Care Reform - A Good End Does Not Justify Evil Means

Commentary by Msgr. Ignacio Barreiro Carámbula

(Editor's Note: Msgr. Barreiro, a Doctor of Dogmatic Theology and attorney with years of experience in international diplomacy at the UN, is head of the Rome office of Human Life International.)

ROME, Italy, August 20, 2009 ( - All persons of good will need to understand the clear and present danger with which the US is being menaced by the health reform proposed by the Obama Administration. Abortion will be multiplied, the U.S. will move ahead on the road towards euthanasia, conscience rights will be in jeopardy: but what is worse, the United States would start moving towards a tyrannical, socialist government that would be the source of all sort of moral evils.

The current debate on health care reform has to be framed on the basis on some clear principles that are accessible to all persons of good will. The starting point is that health care is a basic human right. All human beings have a right to life from the moment of conception to the moment of natural death.

A consequence of this right is that all human persons are entitled to receive from society the necessary conditions to support life. If those conditions to support life were denied, the right to life would become illusory. One of the necessary means is appropriate health care.

This human right is complemented with the duty of each individual person to do all that he can to protect his own life, which at the same time is the first natural inclination that we find in all human beings. In this case the duty of the person is that, through gainful employment, he should be able to support himself and his natural dependents. This self-support should include healthcare.

The question that has always confronted us is when a person, either due to dysfunctions of society or his own personal handicaps, is not able to provide for himself or his family. In this case a Christian view of society on the basis of justice and charity leads to the support of those persons.

The Catholic Church has established hundreds of health care institutions dedicated primarily to assistance of the poor and destitute that could not afford to pay for appropriate health care. A good many non-Catholic Christian groups have also established such institutions.

In the recent magisterium of the Catholic Church, we can see the recognition of healthcare as a basic human right belonging to all human beings. This was proclaimed by Pius XI in his Encyclical letter, Quadragesimo Anno, n. 28, John Paul II in his Encyclical Letter Sollicitudo Rei Socialis, n. 42, par. 3, and Benedict XVI in his Encyclical Letter, Caritas in Veritate, n. 43. This position has been reiterated in letters to Congress by Bishops William Murphy on July 17th and of Cardinal Justin Rigali of August 11th.

The evident fact that society has an obligation to provide health care to those persons who are not able to obtain it by themselves, should not lead to the conclusion that this service should be provided by the Federal Government. A health care system administered by the Federal Government presents a multitude of problems.

Some have ascertained that the health care reform that is currently being considered by Congress is based on the good end of providing health coverage to all those who lack it. But there are reasonable grounds to be doubtful about this. There could be reasonable concern and doubt if that stated good end is just a cover up and a Trojan Horse to promote birth control and family planning, to expand in horrible ways the availability of abortion, to legalize euthanasia and to overwhelm the rights of conscience of all the persons that are rightfully opposed to those immoral acts.

We have to keep in mind that rights of conscience are violated not only by forcing a person to do what is against his beliefs, but also forcing him to refer a patient to another. If the rights of conscience of health care providers, medical workers and other health care personnel like nurses and pharmacists are not respected it would have catastrophic consequences for American society. All Catholic hospitals and probably many others belonging to different religious groups will have to close, and a substantial amount of their health care personnel will have to leave their professions or emigrate.

We also have to consider that this health program or any other administered by the Federal Government is another step towards socialism, and as a consequence towards the establishment of a despotic and dictatorial government.

Today we witness a constant growth of government programs that control increasing sectors of society. Those programs as a whole represent a growing erosion of the legitimate and traditional freedoms of individuals, and of many organic and natural intermediate societies like the family, villages and towns and the States of the Union.

The persons who established the American Republic were well aware of the risks of despotism that go hand in hand with the existence of a powerful central government. They placed in the Constitution all sort of checks and balances. The establishment of a national health care system would be another step towards the erosion of those constitutional guarantees.

A serious concern shared by most persons who are aware of the U.S. health care system's problems is the continuing massive increase in the cost of that system. The constant growth of the Federal deficit makes it very unlikely that the central government will reduce those health care costs. More so, what is likely to happen is that the establishment of the proposed reformed national health care system will instead expand the cost of that system through a bloated bureaucracy that will actively promote a materialistic anti-life ideology.

The establishment of this health system will be an attack of the organic principle of subsidiarity. Instead, Americans need to design and develop all sorts of initiatives: first, at a local level, and then at a State level, that would provide some guarantees of health care assistance to the poor and destitute. Taking into account the principle of gratuity so well developed in the encyclical of Benedict XVI Caritas in Veritate, the establishment of non-profit medical facilities and non-profit insurance groups should be encouraged. In the current demographic circumstances those institutions should give a priority to the protection of well established large families.

Last, but not least, the cost of the proposed system should be taken into account. During this time of economic crisis, the tax burden upon American citizens should not be increased. But it should also be considered that excessive taxation not only paves the way towards despotism, it damages the economy. It paves the way towards despotism because one of the guarantees of personal freedom, the establishment of a family patrimony, would be eroded by overtaxation. It damages the economy by killing economic incentive and eliminating disposable income, two of the growth engines of a free market economy.

All persons of good will should make a serious effort to understand the deleterious implications of the Obama administration's initiatives and oppose this health care reform, through prayer and all possible moral and legal means.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Offering

Monday, August 17, 2009

Why Is the Doctrine of the Eucharist Important?

The past three weeks in Mass the gospel readings have been from John 6 and the homilies have focused on the Eucharist. So it is very timely that commenter Anette asked "Regarding the bread and the wine really becoming flesh and blood. Why is this important? Isn't the presence of Christ what matters?"
I understand what you are saying- that His presence is really what matters! It's just that Catholics believe that receiving his body in blood in the Eucharist is the most direct way to experience his presence and avail ourselves of His grace. This is a doctrine that is very near and dear to me because once my eyes were opened to His presence in the breaking of the bread(the way the early Christians referred to the Mass) I knew I had to return to this Church because it had always been my desire to experience him as fully as possible. I still remember the feeling I had once I realized the early Christians actually believed that Jesus was still with them by way of the Eucharistic celebration/sacrifice of the altar. It was one of those "I could of had a V8" moments multiplied exponentially. I have blogged on this extensively but because of my non-existent system of archiving posts, I am going to answer Anette's question here once again using my thoughts and readings from the past 5 years.

The bread and wine becoming Christ's body and blood is very important because it is the normative way that the Christian world for 2000 has experienced the presence of Christ. It does not preclude us from experiencing Him in other ways but it is indeed the source and summit of a Catholic's faith. It is the ultimate sacrament above all other sacraments.(God's use of physical means to convey His grace) Why do we need a sacrament to fully experience God? I suspect it has something to do with the incarnation, God coming to earth as a man. He chose to use flesh and the stuff of earth to redeem us. Blood, water, bread and wine. Tertullian said that the flesh is the hinge of salvation.

The concept of receiving Christ in the Eucharist is pre-figured in the Old Testament. In the NT, John calls Jesus the Lamb of God and hinges the past with the future for the Jewish disciples. When the followers of John looked down the river and heard John say "Behold the Lamb of God" the picture that came to their mind was the Passover and the sacrificed lamb and the sure knowledge that they must eat the Lamb in in order to escape certain death. Only with a Jewish mind do I suspect we could really gather the import of those words spoken by John about his cousin.(Check this post here) Later, we hear Jesus tell us that He is the bread come down from heaven and we must eat his body and blood. Still later, the night he was betrayed, he took the bread and broke it and said: "Take and eat this is my body" Still later, as the early church started to grow, Paul had to speak to the Corinthians about their lack of discernment of the Lord's body and blood and how some were even getting sick and dying because of their abuse of the sacrament.

Please take a look at what the earliest Christians did with these words and the teachings that the disciples handed down to them. These early Christians believed that Christ would become physically and spiritually present to them in the breaking of the bread. They wrote about it extensively and defended this belief to their deaths and continued to celebrate the Mass for the next 1600 years with almost no dissent in this belief. Here's just a brief story example: Ignatius was a disciple of John, Jesus beloved disciple. He wrote about the Eucharist describing it as the body and blood of our Lord and admonished those who refused to accept it. That was just a mere 70 years after Jesus ascended to heaven. It is unlikely they could have twisted this doctrine wrong so soon. Especially being handed to them from one of the twelve original disciples.

There are pages and pages of writings of the early Church fathers that show that the early Church believed in the real presence which you can access, but my point is that this has been a constant teaching of the Church for 2000 years. There was one or two occasions in history(pre-reformation) when the doctrine of the Eucharist was challenged. Most notably was a priest named Berengar of Tours in the 11th century who argued that it was not necessary for the elements to be changed into his real body and blood, but he was the exception and almost universally this belief has been held. Even when the great schism of 1054 occurred, the Orthodox continued to carry with them this apostolic teaching and to this day we believe Christ is present in the Eucharist confected in an Orthodox Church because they can trace the succession of their priests and bishops to the original apostles.
So the early disciples believed it, the early Church believed it and it was a doctrine rarely challenged in the history of the Church. Even Luther*, at least initially, held to this belief and fought vehemently with the other reformers(Zwingli) who wished to state that the Lord's Supper was symbolic.
When you think about it, why would anyone rail against this doctrine? To believe that Jesus can still come to us in the appearance of bread and wine and give us himself, body soul and divinity? To me, it is one of the most wonderful aspects of this incarnate faith we share. Martin Luther said this in his defense of the Real Presence:

Who, but the devil, has granted such license of wresting the words of the holy Scripture? Who ever read in the Scriptures, that my body is the same as the sign of my body? or, that is is the same as it signifies? What language in the world ever spoke so? It is only then the devil, that imposes upon us by these fanatical men. Not one of the Fathers of the Church, though so numerous, ever spoke as the Sacramentarians: not one of them ever said, It is only bread and wine; or, the body and blood of Christ is not there present.

Surely, it is not credible, nor possible, since they often speak, and repeat their sentiments, that they should never (if they thought so) not so much as once, say, or let slip these words: It is bread only; or the body of Christ is not there, especially it being of great importance, that men should not be deceived. Certainly, in so many Fathers, and in so many writings, the negative might at least be found in one of them, had they thought the body and blood of Christ were not really present: but they are all of them unanimous.”

Regarding the Eucharist he also said: "For it is dangerous and dreadful to hear or believe anything against the unanimous testimony, faith, and doctrine of the entire holy Christian Church, as it has been held unanimously in all the world up to this year 1500."

So in conclusion, it is important because the Eucharist is the means in which Christ promised to abide with us, nourish us and ultimately bring us to salvation.

St Ignatius said in the 2nd Century: "Every time this mystery is celebrated, 'the work of our redemption is carried on' and we 'break the one bread that provides the medicine of immortality, the antidote for death, and the food that makes us live forever in Jesus Christ'"

*What is the sacrament of the altar?

It is the true body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ under bread and wine for us Christians to eat and to drink, established by Christ Himself. ( cf Luther's little Instruction Book.)

Dum Spiro, Spero

I have a good friend who is also a good priest and I was sharing with him a burden I have had for a very long time. He said, remember the old latin saying: "Dum spiro, spero." While I breathe, I hope.
I never heard that but was thankful for it. The opposite of hope is despair. The Catechism tells us that despair is contrary to God's goodness, to his justice - for the Lord is faithful to his promises - and to his mercy.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Feast Of The Assumption of Mary

Today across the world, the Church celebrates the feast of the Assumption of Mary, the Mother of Jesus. (AKA the Mother of God as the Church has referred to her since the 5th century)
Did Mary ascend into heaven? No, she is not divine and could not on her own power. Jesus ascended, Mary was assumed. She was taken up body and soul to heaven by the power of God.
How could this be that a mere mortal doesn't face bodily corruption after death but goes straight to heaven?
Both Enoch and Elisha did not suffer corruption but were taken up to heaven by the power of God. It is not a stretch then to believe that Mary also could have been assumed? Her bones were never found which adds credence to this belief since many of the early martyrs from the first century and onwards had their remains carefully collected and venerated by the early Christians. How much more would they have wanted to collect her remains to venerate them? But there is no record of them finding them yet we have Peter's bones.

Does the Assumption make us want to glorify Mary and detract from worship which is due to God alone? No. Actually , the assumption of Mary helps us to recognize the inherent dignity of man and gives us hope for our own destiny in glory someday.

How so? Here is Pope Pius XII's comments on the proclamation of the dogma of the assumption:
(proclaiming a dogma is not inventing a new doctrine, but universally declaring a truth that had been long held by the Church, but now is made an article of faith)

"This solemn proclamation and definition of the Assumption will contribute in no small way to the advantage of human society, since it redounds to the glory of the Most Blessed Trinity, to which the Blessed Mother of God was bound by such singular bonds. It is to be hoped that all the faithful will be stirred up to a stronger piety toward their heavenly Mother, and that the souls of all those who glory in the Christian name may be moved by the desire of sharing in the unity of Christ's Mystical Body and of increasing their love for her who in all things shows her motherly heart to the members of Christ's Body. . . . In this magnificent way, all may see clearly to what a lofty goal our bodies and souls are destined. Finally, it is our hope that belief in Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven will make our belief in our own resurrection stronger and render it more effective."

Straight from the horses mouth so to speak, not one word about worshiping Mary.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Liberal Abortion Laws Lead to Increased Maternal Death

Where are the feminists when you need them? Why aren't they all over this story? Why aren't we seeing this story in the MainStreamMedia?
International Planned Parenthood has produced statistics that indicate that the more a country makes abortion accessible, the higher the rate of maternal death. Now that's interesting. It flies in the face of: "Let's make abortion safe and legal and end back-alley abortions that maim and killed women."
Ireland, a country with the strictest anti-abortion policy in the world, has the lowest maternal death rate. Who would have thought?

Unborn Children Killed in an Auto Accident

Check this link. A sad case of a woman who lost two unborn twins in an auto accident. Since pre-born children in Vermont are not considered human children and have no rights, the woman who caused the accident can't be tried for murder, since killing unborn children is not against the law in Vermont. Eventually these type of situations have to make the most ardent pro-choice person start to question the logic of their movement.

"They’re babies. It just makes no sense to me how anyone can say: ’they’re not babies, they’re a fetus, "

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Brother Lawrence and the Eucharist and Other Thoughts

I had a question in my com box from a Christian lawyer who read my testimony. I chose to answer it here so everyone could benefit. Thanks Anette for your patience, sorry it took so long.

Annette's comments in brown, mine in blue.

"Just a couple of questions (and these are just honest question--I'm not trying to challenge you): First, you mention that the Eucharist is very important to Catholics because it's the actual presence of Christ in the bread and the wine. But Brother Lawrence (whose book you mention as one of your favorites) talks about practicing God's presence all the time. He says nothing about the Eucharist or any other sacrament. Nothing distinguishes Brother Lawrence from a Protestant, because his book is all about an intimate walk with God in faith and obedience. Isn't that what it's all about, regardless of our denomination?

Yes absolutely! Our goal in this life is to become intimate with Christ through faith and obedience. I like how you include both. That is what I believe as well. But, Brother Lawrence was a daily communicant based on his belonging to a Carmelite order so the Eucharist was a daily part of his worship. I can't comment on why he did not emphasize it more.
Outside of receiving Christ in the Eucharist, we are all encouraged to spiritually commune with God all day as Brother Lawrence did. He perfected that ability to be with God in the present moment of everyday. I don't think that negates the value or importance of the Eucharist and the majority of saints and Catholic mystics do put a lot of emphasis on the Eucharist. Thomas a Kempis, not a saint, but a well loved mystic by both Protestant and Catholics devotes an entire of section of his book, Imitation of Christ to the Eucharist. Honestly, I think that if Brother Lawrence mentioned that he received the Eucharist daily, his Christian classic would probably not have crossed denominational lines.
In my experience as a Catholic over 5 years , I can tell you that indeed the Eucharist has become the most important part of my spiritual life. Daily receiving Christ in the Eucharist gives me the grace to continue that spiritual communion throughout the day. I have found my personal walk with Jesus to be enhanced by Catholicism, not detracted by. That being said, some days are better than others, (we are still in these flesh suits!) but if you ask my wife, she likes the Catholic me better!
If Christians of any stripe really believed that Jesus was just around the corner from them in their local Catholic Church, they would be regularly taking Him in physically through communion and adoring Him in Eucharistic adoration. Who doesn't want to get closer to Jesus? Why more Catholics don't take advantage of this is the heartache of the Church, in my opinion.
But the failure of Catholics to appreciate their Lord in the Eucharist does not negate nor prove that the Real Presence isn't true. Every denomination has those members who fail to realize the treasure of truth that they have access to.

Oh, btw, Catholic belief is that the bread and the wine actually are changed into his body and blood but retain the appearance of bread and wine. God is merciful to us not asking us to chew flesh and drink blood which would be repulsive to our natural senses. (That's why so many walked away from him in John 6:66)

And, in your mind, wouldn't a Protestant who does this be better off than a Catholic who just takes the Eucharist faithfully?
Do you mean a Catholic who just takes the Eucharist in a rote fashion, not truly discerning the body of Christ? Yes!
I would certainly say that a Catholic who lives like Brother Lawrence is FAR better off than an evangelical who has just said the Sinner's Prayer.
Again I say Yes!

Second, when you were first born again as a teenager, you "were set free from much sin and bad life choices in just one night." I understand that to mean that you stopped sinning in those ways, and not just that you felt forgiven. You also say that your parents "didn't allow their faith to help them with their personal problems. They had a troubled marriage and alcohol abuse was a chronic unspoken demon in their lives." Later, you came to believe that you were misguided as a teenager. Why? Didn't Jesus come to take away our sins? Again, this is just an honest question, and I may have missed your explanation in the text.
Yes I believe that God did a powerful work in my life the night I surrendered to Him by praying and asking to receive Him. It was more than a feeling and lasted for 30 years give or take some definite dark periods. I say that I was misguided because the group of Christians were strong anti-Catholics exposing me to the most virulent anti-Catholic propaganda(Chick Tracks).
What if I came home that night, told some devout Catholics what had happened and they sat down with me to explain how Jesus really did touch me and then showed me how I could keep this flame alive via the grace available to me in the sacraments as a young Catholic teenager? What if I had a conversion experience during a Catholic teen retreat as sometimes occurs? I would not have thought Catholicism was evil but would have been overjoyed to know I could get even closer to Him by now understanding the grace of the sacraments. But I was misguided because these sincere Christian people had also been mis-informed about what Catholicism truly was and thought they were doing me a favor by pulling me out of it. I came home with Chick tracts stuffing my pockets and my parents were so troubled it was easy to just write off my version of Catholicism. But you can't judge a religion based on the lives of those who don't practice and live it!
So , yes I believe my sins were forgiven that night and that I definitely had a conversion experience, but I believe now that our lives are a series of conversions and transformations that begin with baptism. From glory to glory he's changing me, as we used to sing.

BTW, I totally agree with you that the Bible says nothing about the Sinner's Prayer (but it does talk about being born again), and we will be judged by our sins (including our sins of omission). But of course a living faith in Christ is the means to obedience, as Brother Lawrence demonstrates so well.

Yes we agree again, and Catholics talk about being born again as well but we base it on John 3:3 referring to born by water and the spirit which the Christians for the first 1600 years believed referred to baptism, not the reciting of a prayer.

I'm glad that your spiritual journey has led you to a place you feel home!

Thank you, yes it's truly God's kindness and mercy to us!


God bless you and thanks so much for spending the time reading my story.

Les Paul (1915-2009)

Growing up in the 60's and 70's and learning to play guitar was what me and most of my friends did. We got into rock and roll and started seeing our guitar idols playing these thick black electric guitars known as Les Pauls. But alas, I was a lower middle class kid with nary two nickels to rub together and the dream of owning a Gibson Les Paul was indeed just that, a dream. (We were playing Teisco-DelRey and Sears Silvertone pieces of krap)

Fast forward to the mid 1980's; I was a medical resident in an internal medicine residency in Philadelphia. I had long ago smashed all my rock and roll albums and cut my hair when I got saved, but the dream of owning a Les Paul never faded. But I was so busy then, I barely had time to brush my teeth, much less play guitar. I came home on our anniversary(the wooden anniversary) and my late wife presented me with the above guitar. At the time, our combined income was going for a small mortgage and car insurance and food etc and a guitar was the last thing I thought we could afford. She knew I always wanted a Les Paul and a friend tipped her off to a desperate dental student who was cash-strapped but guitar-rich at the time. 350 dollars later, this almost new guitar was in my living room. At the time a brand new Les Paul Custom was worth three times that and now they are retailing for almost 9X that!
So here's to you Mr. Les Paul for making/inventing the electric guitar that has stood the test of time. My prayers are with you today.

Update on My Patient

Just an update on my post the other day. The daughter of the patient called the hospice nurse screaming at him that her father wasn't dying fast enough dictating to him a dose of morphine to be given to him. She wanted him to have morphine given around the clock despite the fact he had no respiratory distress, grimacing or tachycardia, all signs of distress in a patient who can't speak.
(As an aside, The daughter won't talk to me so she uses the hospice nurse as a go between. )The hospice nurse called me in a panic because of her phone call and explained what she wanted. I said: "there is absolutely no clinical indication to administer morphine at this time and besides I am not going to be the one to kill her father. Euthanasia is illegal here in Pennsylvania, and I don't want to go to jail and even more importantly, I don't want to go to Hell." The nurse understood my points and said he agreed with my decision. I immediately went down to check on my patient and he was in a coma, comfortable with no obvious distress. Giving him morphine would have pushed him over the edge. I prayed for him then left the room. "Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death."
Sometime in the early morning yesterday he passed away naturally. No family at the bedside, no lethal doses of narcotic, just the nursing home nurses who understood the difference between compassion and murder.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Old Time Religion-The Worship of The Early Church

Despite having posted on the Mass multiple times over the years on this blog I continue to be amazed at how the early Christians worshiped almost identically to the way in which we do now.

From Calvin College's Christian Classics site, I have posted a treatise on early christian worship by Protestant theologian H.R. Percival. He based it on his study of the writings of the Didache, St. Cyril of Jerusalem and St. John Chrysostom.

Geez, now why didn't my pastors and bible study leaders tell me about these writings when we were trying to emulate the New Testament Church? Would have saved a whole lot of trouble for me over the years!

"The congregation is gathered together, the men on one side, the women on the other, the clergy in the apsidal chancel. The readings immediately begin; they are interrupted by chants. A reader ascends the ambo, which stood in the middle of the Church, between the clergy and the people and reads two lessons; then another goes up in his place to sing a psalm. . . . When the lessons and psalmodies are done, the priests take the word, each in his turn and after them the bishop. The series ended with a lection from the Gospel, which is made not by a reader, but by a priest or deacon. (So it is at the present time.)

"After the sermon the sending out of the different categories of persons, who should not assist at the holy Mysteries, take place. When there remain in the Church only the faithful communicants, these fall to prayer. ('Depart all ye Cathechumens: let no Cathechu­mens remain: but let us who are in the faith again, yet again, in peace pray unto the Lord,' is retained in the Liturgy and is in use now.) Deacon says the litany and to all these petitions is added Kyrie eleison. Then the voice of the bishop rises in the silence he pronounces a solemn prayer of a grave and majestic style. Here ends the first part of the liturgy. The second part, the Christian liturgy properly so called, begins by the salutation of the bishop, followed by the response of the people. Then, at the sign given by a deacon, the clergy receive the kiss of peace from the bishop, and the faithful give it to each other, men to men, women to women.

"Then the deacons and the other lower ministery divide themselves between watching and serving at the altar. . . . This is a solemn moment. After private prayer the bishop makes the sign of the cross upon his brow and begins.

  • 'The grace of God Almighty, and the love of our Lord Jesus Christ and the communion of the Holy Ghost be with you always.'
  • 'And with thy Spirit.'
  • 'Lift up your hearts.'
  • 'We lift them up unto the Lord.'
  • 'It is meet and right so to do.'

"And the eucharistic prayer goes on, concluding where the Cherubim and the Seraphim eternally make heaven ring with the Trisagion. Here the whole multitude of the people lift up their voices and joining their song with that of the Choir of Angels, sing 'Holy, Holy, Holy, etc.' (We have all this in our Liturgy now. - B.T.) When the hymn is done and silence returns the bishop continues the interrupted eucharistic prayer. Then, taking his inspiration from the last words, 'Do this in remembrance of Me,' the bishop develops the idea re­calling the Passion of the Son of God, His death, His resurrection, His ascension, the hope of His glorious return, and declaring that it is in order to observe this precept and make this memorial that the congregation offers to God this eucharistic bread and wine.

"Finally the Bishop prays the Lord to turn upon the Oblation a favorable regard, and to send down upon it the power of His Holy Spirit, to make it the Body and Blood of Christ, the spiritual food of His faithful and the pledge of their immortality (all this is observed now.)

"The mystery is consummated. The bishop then directs the prayers. After this is said 'Our Father.' The bishop then pro­nounces his benediction on the people.

The deacon awakens the attention of the faithful and the bishop cries aloud, 'Holy things for holy persons.' And the people answer, 'There is one only holy, one holy Lord Jesus Christ, to the glory of God the Father, Amen.' No doubt at this moment took place the fraction of the bread, a ceremony which the documents of the fourth century do not mention in express terms (no doubt it did as it does now. - B.T.) The communion then follows. The bishop receives first, then the priests, the deacons, the subdeacons, the readers, the singers, the ascetics, the deaconesses, the virgins, the widows, the little children and last of all the people. The bishop places the con­secrated bread in the right hand, which is open, and supported by the left; the deacon holds the chalice - they drink out of it directly. To each communicant the bishop says, 'The Body of Christ,' and the deacon (now bishop) says, 'The Blood of Christ, the Cup of life,' which is answered, 'Amen.' During the communion the singers execute Psalm XXXIII (34) Benedicam Dominum, in which the words '0, taste and see how gracious the Lord is,' have a special suitability (it is in use now). When the communion is done the deacon gives the sign for prayer, which the bishop offers in the name of all ('0 Lord, who blesses those that bless Thee,' now is read generally by the priest. - B.T.) then all bow to receive the blessing. Finally the deacon dismisses the congregation, saying, 'Go in peace.' (Bishop or priest does this now.)"

Three possible conclusions to be drawn from this are:

A: The early Church had gotten it terribly wrong already by the second and third century and this sacrifice of the altar was a complete mis-interpretation of what our Lord intended at the last supper. (Despite the fact that no writings exist to suggest there was an alternate and equally acceptable form of weekly worship which included a symbolic presentation of the Lord's supper.)

B. The writings of the early church were actually written in the 11th century by a corrupted Catholic Church to justify the newly invented doctrine of transubstantiation and were doctored up to appear historic. There has always been a hidden persecuted true church of believers worshiping in secret and the ruling Catholics destroyed any evidence of their existence in the history books.

C. This early Church described above in their beliefs and practices is the Church that traces its lineage to Jesus and the apostle's teachings and continues forward through history today as the Catholic Church.

I choose C.

Monday, August 10, 2009

"Do Me a Favor Doc, Kill My Dad"

Dr Josef Mengele

I have been caring for an elderly man at my nursing home who suffers from end-stage parkinson's disease and moderate dementia. Since his admission, his daughter has been refusing to allow me to prescribe what I think are appropriate medications because she feels that I am trying to just "keep him alive." Such meds are cough medicine and antibiotics(which cost about 18 bucks)
When I walk down the hall I say "hello John" and he waves his hand at me. I ask him if he needs anything and says, "just something for the pain in my back." His daughter lives less than 2 miles away and never visits. About two weeks ago, he had a sudden decline and stopped eating or drinking. His family long ago signed papers to ensure he wouldn't get hydration or artificial nutrition. This weekend, his daughter actually came in and asked the nurse if I could "give him something to end it" because she was going away on a trip and he was much to her dismay, still alive.
Needless to say the nurse didn't respond to the daughter's request and was quite taken aback by it, thankfully. Folks, our society is at a very scary precipice here. We are all worrying that the government is going to push the elderly off the cliff, yet the average American has already obviously gotten into the Purple Koolaid and believe it's ok to kill their parents! This is not the first time I have gotten this kind of request but it will only escalate when our state allows Physician -Assisted Suicide. That's how it started in the Netherlands, now they have Euthanasia and it has become quiet an industry called Suicide Tourism.
God have mercy on us, If you live in PA, write to your legislators and tell them you won't support them if they support PAS.

From the Catechism:

Intentional euthanasia, whatever its forms or motives, is murder. It is gravely contrary to the dignity of the human person and to the respect due to the living God, his Creator.

Suicide is seriously contrary to justice, hope, and charity. It is forbidden by the fifth commandment.

From John Paul 2

Just as a century ago it was the working classes which were oppressed in their fundamental rights, and the church courageously came to their defense by proclaiming the sacrosanct rights of that worker as person, so now, when another category of persons is being oppressed in the fundamental right to life, the church feels in duty bound to speak out with the same courage on behalf of those who have no voice. Hers is always the evangelical cry in defense of the world's poor, those who are threatened and despised and whose human rights are violated.

The church intends not only to reaffirm the right to life — the violation of which is an offense against the human person and against God the Creator and Father, the loving source of all life — but she also intends to devote herself ever more fully to concrete defense and promotion of this right. The church feels called to this by her Lord. From Christ she receives the "Gospel of life" and feels responsible for its proclamation to every creature. Even at the price of going against the trend, she must proclaim that Gospel courageously and fearlessly, in word and deed, to individuals, peoples and states.

It is precisely this fidelity to Christ the Lord which in this area too is the church's law and her strength. The new evangelization, which is a fundamental pastoral necessity in today's world, cannot neglect the proclamation of the inviolable right to life which belongs to every person from the moment of conception until life's natural end."

Friday, August 07, 2009

Obamacare and Charity and Truth

Check out this article in the National Catholic Register

"Does the proposal help us expand health care? In other words, does it allow us to cut the true factors that drive health-care costs — or does it kowtow to those who are responsible for those costs, for instance trial lawyers and pharmaceutical companies?

Also: Does the proposal put decisions about assistance in the hands of those closest to the need? Or does it move those decisions to Washington?

Of course, all of those questions are moot if a health-care proposal fails to protect the right to life. Health care that pays for abortion or pressures older patients to forgo necessary treatment isn’t a health-care system at all, but a death machine.

No matter how it is structured or how many benefits it provides to people, Catholics must oppose any legislator who proposes or supports a death machine.

Love and truth demand that."

Thursday, August 06, 2009

When Nuns Sing

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

"Eternal Life Does Not Depend On Works" WRONG!!

From the online journal of George Sodini dated 8/3/09

Pray for the victims of this horrible crime.

The Cure Of Ars

Yesterday the Church celebrated the 150th anniversary of the death of Saint John Vianney, the Cure of Ars. Known for spending up to 16 hours per day hearing confessions, he was responsible for a spiritual awakening in his rural area of France in the 19th century. He is the patron saint of parish priests and Pope Benedict has invoked his intercessions for the Year of the Priest.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Catholics Come Home Is Bringing Them Back!

Here's some encouraging news:


Program Reverses Trends in National Pew Study

Atlanta, GA (4 August 2009) founder and president, Tom Peterson, will appear on FOX News tomorrow, August 5, 2009. It will be Peterson's second appearance on the national cable news network.

Reporter Anita Vogel sought out Peterson to discuss the much hyped "Pew Study" issued in April 2009. The Pew Study reported that about half of American adults change religious affiliation at least once during their lives.

"Some Christians are drawn to faith communities that promote an 'a la carte' practice of faith, while others are lured out of religious practice altogether by the perceived glamour of secularism," says Peterson. By using compassionate commercials that drive viewers to an interactive website, invites inactive Catholics and others to the sacraments found only in the universal Church Jesus started 2000 years ago. Peterson went on to explain that, " messages also minister to people who are struggling with faith to find the answers, hope and peace that only comes from a relationship with Jesus."

Catholics Come Home, Inc. is a lay Catholic organization faithful to the Church's teachings. It creates effective and compassionate media messages and broadcasts them nationally and internationally to inspire, educate and evangelize inactive Catholics and others to come home to our faith family. Results from initial television campaigns show that the commercials are motivating existing Catholics to share their faith with their friends, relatives and neighbors. Additionally, it appears that 25% of the web visitors are potential converts looking for a faith family and church home.

Peterson's international apostolate has already touched millions of souls around the world, welcoming them back home to the Catholic Church. In addition, reaches out to people of other faiths to help them discover the sacraments, beauty, truth and accomplishments of the Catholic Church which helped build Western Civilization.

According to Catholic News Service (CNS), parishes in the Diocese of Phoenix reported a 12 percent increase in weekly Mass attendance that still continues long after the commercials aired. The television initiative and website were directly responsible for bringing nearly 100,000 inactive Catholics and converts home to the Church during Lent 2008.

The Diocese of Corpus Christi, Texas, experienced similar success with its 2009 bilingual ( campaign, where initial results show 17.7 percent increase in weekly Mass attendance through 38 surveyed parishes. The commercials resulted in similar increases in Spanish language Mass attendance.

These consistent results have motivated a dozen other archdioceses and dioceses throughout the United States to partner with to launch campaigns in their areas during the upcoming seasons of Advent and Lent. These include: the Archdioceses of Chicago, Atlanta, Omaha and Seattle, and the Dioceses of Sacramento, Colorado Springs, Lincoln, Green Bay, Rockford, Joliet, Charlotte, Providence and Venice (FL).

The momentum of has now extended internationally into Australia where Peterson recently returned from a national media conference followed by the Plenary meeting with the Cardinal and all 44 Bishops of Australia to discern implementation of on their continent. It appears that Brisbane may be the first international archdiocese to launch the campaign.

"No creative marketing team could possibly yield these miraculous results," Peterson concludes. "This is truly an apostolic movement designed and directed by the Holy Spirit. Our invitation is simple: 'We are Catholic. Welcome Home'."

Monday, August 03, 2009

Feast of St. Peter Eymard

Today the Church marks the life and devotion of St. Peter Eymard, a 19th century French priest whose life was centered on the Eucharist. He encouraged the 40 hour devotion and Eucharistic adoration wherever he preached. This week's readings in daily Mass are again pointing to the manna in the Old Testament given to the Jewish people and to the true bread from heaven in the NT, Christ's own body given for us, the new Israel. As Catholic author, Jeff Pinyan says, "you can't undertand the true meaning of the New Testament without understanding the Old Testament." Check out this great article

"When we work hard, we must eat well. What a joy, that you can receive Holy Communion often! It's our life and support in this life -- Receive Communion often, and Jesus will change you into himself."

"Have a great love for Jesus in his divine Sacrament of Love; that is the divine oasis of the desert. It is the heavenly manna of the traveler. It is the Holy Ark. It is the life and Paradise of love on earth."

"Live on the divine Eucharist, like the Hebrews did on the Manna. Your soul can be entirely dedicated to the divine Eucharist and very holy in the midst of your work and contacts with the world."

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Media Coverage of Our New Bishop

In Allentown, the Morning Call newspaper had the bishop's ordination and installation as front page news. In bold letters it quoted him:

''Now is the time for evangelization, using every means of modern technology at our disposal to spread the Gospel."

This media coverage of the ordination in and of itself is a gospel witness. The world sees that the Church Christ established continues to go about its business of making disciples of men, ordaining presbyters(priests) and bishops by the laying on of hands.(1 Tim)
Watching the video here was very moving for me as I saw the almost 2000 year old process unfold.