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.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

We Have A First Class Relic of Saint Therese of Lisieux!

Deborah and I were sharing our testimony at a local parish and mentioned to the priest that we were starting a novena to St. Therese of Lisieux (The Little Flower)  He became excited and told us that he too had a devotion to St. Therese and has a first class relic of hers! When Deborah asked if she could venerate it, he said we could borrow it for the novena. So now we have a first class relic of St. Therese in our possession, at least temporarily.
   A first class relic is a part of the body of a person who the Church has deemed worth of venerating- honoring and modeling our lives after because of the heroic virtue shown in their earthly life. Once they are officially recognized by the Church, we are encouraged to go to them to ask their intercession for our needs. This practice has been going on since the beginning of the Christian faith as the early Christians would gather the bones of those who were martyred to venerate them.


The Idiot's Quick and Dirty Guide to Relics by Russ Rentler, M.D.

God is the God of matter. He created matter and works through it. Blood, bread, wine, oil, mud, spittle, old prophet's bones, hems of garments, hankies, shadows etc . The Incarnation itself shows us God works through the things of the earth, the flesh in particular. Catholicism is a faith that is incarnational in nature and as Tertullian has said, "the flesh is the hinge of salvation."

1) Catholics don't worship relics! We venerate (honor) the person they pertain to and that saint draws our hearts towards Christ, the source of all power and grace.
2) Relics have no magic power, or any power unto themselves.
3) Relics are never to be bought or sold! (Let's here it for the Council of Trent!) It was never an official position/teaching of the Church to allow relic sales.
4) They may be the occasion of miracles wrought by God (as in Elisha's bones) and many other documented healings in the history of the Church.
5) The use of relics can lead people to receive or respond to grace. They do not actually provide grace because they are just matter, only God can provide grace. This is the key message here.
6) There is strong historical evidence of the early church's veneration of bones, ashes of the martyrs and their tombs were often the site of prayer. After Polycarp, a disciple of John was burned at the stake: "We took up his bones, which are more valuable than precious stones and finer than refined gold, and laid them in a suitable place, where the Lord will permit us to gather ourselves together, as we are able, in gladness and joy and to celebrate the birthday of his martyrdom." Not worshiping the dead, but that "the honor shown them may reflect on their Master, Jesus!"


Blogger Shirley said...

Wonderful- I hope you attain many graces through this spacial novena.

September 24, 2011 11:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My mother wears her 1st class relic pinned in her pocket everyday, for as long as i can remember!

March 13, 2012 6:05 PM  

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