Keep your eyes open!...


August 31, 2005

Reflection by Father Ted

"My God, I believe, I adore, I hope, I love You. I beg pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope, and do not love You."

This is the prayer that the Archangel Michael taught the children of Fatima back in 1916 - nearly one year before the Blessed Virgin Mary began to appear to them.

He wanted them to become children of prayer - so that they could become more open to the love that God had for them. And, of course, to prepare them for the coming of the Mother of God, the Queen of Peace.

Then during the summer of 1916 he appeared to them again - exhorting them to pray even more fervently. He said, "Pray, pray very much! The Holy Hearts of Jesus and Mary have merciful designs concerning you. Offer prayers and sacrifices constantly to the Most High!"

At that time the three children were only 5, 6, and 8.

Finally, during the fall of that year, Saint Michael appeared to them a third time. And when he did so he found them in prayer. They were praying the prayer that he had taught them during his first visit to them.

Sister Lucia recalls that when they became aware of his presence an extraordinary light shone upon them. Then they saw him holding a chalice in his left hand, with the Host suspended above it, from which some drops of blood fell into the chalice.

Before the archangel gave to Lucia the Sacred Host, and to Francisco and Jacinta from the chalice, he exhorted them to pray another awesome prayer - "Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly, and I offer Thee the Most Precious Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the earth, in reparation for the insults, sacrileges, and indifference with which He is offended. And through the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart, and of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg Thee for the conversion of poor sinners."

He exhorted them to pray this prayer, not once, but three times - so important it is to pray.

They obeyed.

It was then that they were given Our Lord truly present in the Sacred Host - truly present in the Precious Blood in the chalice.

As a result of this incredible experience, they remained in prayer for quite some time.

O Jesus, help us to become like these three little ones.

Help us, through the intercession of Saint Michael, to pray more fervently and to pray more often.

Help us to receive the most Precious Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, more fervently and more often.

May we become like them - holy.

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

31. If you find yourself in an abyss of pride and of vain self-esteem, plunge yourself at once into the abyss of the humility of the Sacred Heart. There you must submerge all feelings of pride that are stirred up within you, so that by love of your own abjection you may clothe yourself with His sacred annihilations.

August 30, 2005


Hurricane Katrina plowed into the Gulf Coast at daybreak Monday with shrieking, 145-mph winds and blinding rain, submerging entire neighborhoods up to the rooflines in New Orleans, hurling boats onto land and sending water pouring into Mississippi's strip of beachfront casinos.

The storm passed just to the east of New Orleans as it moved inland, sparing this vulnerable below-sea-level city its full fury and the apocalyptic damage that forecasters had feared.

But there was plenty of destruction in New Orleans, and a clearer picture of the damage emerged after the storm had passed: Mangled street signs, crumbled brick walls in the French Quarter, fallen trees on streetcar tracks, highrises with almost all of their windows blown out. White curtains that were sucked out of the shattered windows of a hotel became tangled in treetops.

By midday, the brunt of the storm had moved beyond New Orleans to Mississippi's coast, home to the state's floating casinos, where Katrina washed sailboats onto a coastal four-lane highway. The Beau Rivage Hotel and Casino, one of the premier gambling spots in Biloxi, had water on the first floor, and the governor said other casinos were flooded as well.

Katrina was the most powerful storm to affect Mississippi since Hurricane Camille came in as a Category 5 in 1969, killing 256 people in Louisiana and Mississippi.

"This is a devastating hit _ we've got boats that have gone into buildings," said Sullivan, the Gulfport fire chief. "What you're looking at is Camille II."

SPIRITDAILY ARCHIVES: Oh New Orleans, shed ye the darkness or face disaster

TRIBTIMES ARCHIVES: Message from Our Lady Queen of Peace for the 16th July 2005


As Hurricane Katrina continues to make her trek northward, Catholic Charities agencies from around the region, such as agencies in Florida and Baton Rouge, are poised to send technical assistance teams to help the local Catholic Charities in the impacted areas with their response efforts. Once the all clear is given that it is safe to return to those communities hit by the devastating hurricane, the damage and needs assessment will begin.

While local agencies along the Gulf Coast anticipate that they will be provide some type of emergency assistance in their communities, Catholic Charities' niche in disaster relief is to provide long-term recovery work. In fact, Catholic Charities agencies in Florida are still providing services to help people recover from last year's devastating hurricanes.

Based on past disasters, possible long-term services that Catholic Charities may provide include temporary and permanent housing, direct assistance beyond food and water to get people back into their homes, job placement counseling, and medical and prescription drug assistance.

To help communities recover from the damage brought on by Hurricane Katrina, Catholic Charities USA is collecting financial donations that will fund agencies' emergency and long-term disaster recovery efforts.


Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

30. This divine Heart is naught but sweetness, humility and patience, therefore, we must wait... He knows when to act.

August 26, 2005


(Mat 16:15) Jesus saith to them: But whom do you say that I am?

EXCERPT HOMILY BY FATHER ALTIER, Gospel (St. Matthew 16:13-20)

We know that no matter what happens, and we know that things are going to get pretty bad pretty quickly here, the jaws of hell will not prevail. We have the guarantee of Our Lord Himself. So now it comes right back to us. Once again, we need to look at our faith. And that profession of who Jesus is, first of all, because if we believe that He is the Son of God and He is the one who has founded the papacy on Saint Peter and his successors then that tells us this is not just a human institution. It is a divine institution and it is the only place where the fullness of truth is going to be found. So we can have the absolute certainty that as long as we remain united to the Vicar of Christ, the Holy Father in Rome, and as long as we remain faithful to the fullness of the teaching of the Church, that the jaws of hell will never prevail against us. That is quite a guarantee. It is a guarantee of eternal life, provided that we live what we profess.

As the Church prepares herself for a severe persecution, many are going to flee because they do not believe in their heart the reality of what Our Lord has given us. If we would ask, “Why would God allow His Church to be persecuted,” notice that He did not tell Peter that the jaws of hell would stay a mile away. He did not say, “The jaws of hell won’t even clamp down on you.” He said that they will not prevail. So there is going to be a battle. It is a battle for souls. It is a battle for your soul, as well as that of every other human being on the face of the earth. We have some choices to make. Are we going to remain faithful to Jesus? We have everything given to us to be able to guarantee it, provided that we choose it. When things got difficult, we notice that the disciples who were with Our Lord for those three years suddenly abandoned Him. We realize that we could do the same unless we are fully united to Our Lord, unless we love Him so much that we would not abandon Him no matter how bad it gets. If all we do is have the truth in our heads, we are going to run. But if we have the love in our hearts, we will remain faithful.

And so we come all the way back around: Who do you say that the Son of Man is? Ask that question in the depths of your soul and do not just give a quick answer. When you receive Holy Communion today, Jesus Christ, the Son of God and the Son of Mary, is going to be right there inside of you. He is going to look at you and He is going to say to you individually, Who do you say that I am? With Our Lord in you right after Holy Communion, take some time and look seriously at that question. Make the answer with your whole being because the way you live your life in this world and where you will spend eternity is dependent upon your answer. It is not just a flippant answer that we can say, “Because I have been taught since I was a little kid, I know what the answer is.” We do know the answer; the question is, do we believe it? Who do you say that the Church of Jesus Christ is? Who do you say that the Vicar of Christ is? Who do you say that the Son of Man is?

VIA Jim McCrea:

(Isa 55:1-3) All you that thirst, come to the waters: and you that have no money make haste, buy, and eat: come ye, buy wine and milk without money, and without any price. Why do you spend money for that which is not bread, and your labour for that which doth not satisfy you? Hearken diligently to me, and eat that which is good, and your soul shall be delighted in fatness. Incline your ear and come to me: hear and your soul shall live, and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, the faithful mercies of David.

We all inherit the old man of sinful Adam. This means that we are all subject to pride and sensuality. This is expressed in the way that we live our lives. We pass witty remarks back and forth to each other and congratulate ourselves on how clever we are. We judge the character of others and pat ourselves on the back as to how smart and discerning we are. We accumulate possessions that are trendy and impressive in the eyes of others and deem ourselves as important and of some value. We have a slick and efficient manner about ourselves, and see ourselves as something. We look at attractive bodies and engage in all sorts of didal dally that traditional morality condemns, and see ourselves as free and in control of our own lives. In particular, we see ourselves as important if we can find someone else to look down upon, so that our superiority can shine in comparison with his or her inferiority.

All of that is an expression of the old man or the Adam ruled by sin. It is a seeking of values that Isaiah calls "what is not bread" and "what fails to satisfy." Those are the values of the world. It is a dead end street, because while it gives pleasure in the short term, it leads to eventual despair in life.

However, as Christians, we are called to completely break free of such values and adhere to the values of Christ. We are to put off the old man and put on the new man, who is Christ.

With the values of the old man or the world, the object is to satisfy self. When God strips this off through the dark night of the soul, we think that we have lost everything because we think that our ego is all that there is about us. But God is bringing us to a better land. He is bringing us to our true identity - an identity in God. When this occurs, our happiness is no longer found in what satisfies or exults self, but in the infinite attributes of God, which are His beauty, His love, His power, His goodness, His wisdom etc. etc. We no longer live for ourselves and through ourselves, but in and through God and His will. We still value other people and finite things, but now these are windows through which the being and will of God shines. They are no longer ends in themselves. That is our true fulfillment. If we succeed in reaching this, it is a goodness that will satisfy us for all eternity. That is what Isaiah calls "eating well," the "rich fare," and "having life."

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

26. I think that, according to what our Lord makes known to me, He does not wish to take away from you these feelings contrary to the virtue of humility; He leaves you something to fight against, so that He may reward your victories; and also, that you may be continually on your guard and have a great distrust of yourself.

August 25, 2005

(Eph 5:1-2) Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

By Fr. Jack Peterson

Suffering is not an absolute evil.  In this Sunday’s Gospel, St.  Peter provides Jesus with the opportunity to teach that suffering can in fact be a good thing.  It can be used by God to bring about a greater good.  Therefore it should not be avoided at all costs.

This passage follows Peter’s proclamation that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the living God.  Jesus praised Peter, gave him a new name, affirmed that his statement of faith had come from the Father, and gave him supreme authority over his new Church.  Now, we see Jesus rebuking him, "Away from me Satan."

What a stark contrast.  Jesus’ words are harsh.  Clearly, He had a very important lesson to teach that day.

Peter loved Jesus very much.  He did not want Him to suffer.  Peter’s reaction to his friend’s prediction of his impending suffering would be a reasonable one in most circumstances.  However, Peter’s understanding of Jesus and his mission was incomplete.  Peter still needed what Paul described in Romans: to be transformed by the renewal of his mind so that he could judge what is God’s will, what is good, pleasing and perfect.  He did not understand that Jesus had to suffer.  Jesus’ mission was to embrace the will of his Father, become sin for us and sacrifice his life on the cross for the salvation of the world.  It would be the greatest act of love the world would ever know.


VIA Philip: “Love or Hedonism.”

John 15.-

12 This is my commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you.
13 Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

It seems to me that the whole world is tied up on this misunderstanding on what is the meaning of love. I would add that this one word alone is ample proof that we are not qualified in any way to take the word of God as existing solely in the “Bible Alone”. Certainly not, anyway, as regards any English translation. Whilst the wording of Scripture has been substantially unchanged (in traditional Bibles) for over a century, it is only in this modern generation of the last 50 years or so that the error has become almost universal.

The world today almost universally thinks of love as a”feeling” i.e. an emotional feeling based upon romantic, filial or familial love. Whilst not knocking theses expressions of love, I have to say that these feelings are not what God has in mind when He issued His commandment shown above in John 15:12-13. These expressions of love are very common and vary in intensity according to the individual based on genetics, chemistry and environmental factors.

Let us analyse the passage. We are commanded to “love “ one another… How? The answer is quite clear in the first instance. “as I have loved you” . And we have the immediate follow up which explains just what is involved, in how Jesus , God, loved us.

“Greater love than this no man hath,” These words put it at the pinnacle. ie there is nothing greater or superior. And this is an act not a feeling. “that a man lay down his life for his friends.” What is this act of supreme love any thing else but a sacrifice? Nothing else. It is the ultimate perfect love act, and of course made infinite by the sacrifice God in His Son made for the human race. Note carefully this text. It is not because of a "love feeling" that a man lays down his life. The sacrifice IS love. It is made for friend and foe, equally, which distinguishes the Christian from the pagan who will/may sacrifice his life for his own child for a pre existent "feeling".

We must take from the words of Jesus above, the meaning that true love means sacrifice. From the greatest sacrificial act of our life for a friend all the way down to the smallest simple acts of self sacrifice we make for our neighbour, family and friends; this is how we obey the commandment to love one another. If we make a sacrificial effort to pray for another, or indeed ourselves, in total submission to the will of God, then we obey His commandment. "...not as I will, but as Thou will.."

Filial, familial, or romantic love, as pleasurable as these may be are commanded no where, and have no value before God without they involve self sacrifice. Without the sacrifice, they inherit their own reward. They also inherit the tendency to self destruct.

These pleasureable loves are not commanded. Can I find any scriptual evidence to support this? I show just one example, where John claims a special familial relationship. "2 She ran therefore and cometh to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved and saith to them: "

Taken with other Scripture it appears obvious that Jesus had a greater affection for John than Peter. As indeed even a greater still than He had for Judas.

Yet it is also obvious that He loved all including Judas equally, according to His commandment.

Jesus quite plainly shows the relative unimportance of familial or filial love in the following from

Mathew 12.

48 But he answering him that told him, said: Who is my mother, and who are my brethren?

49 And stretching forth his hand towards his disciples, he said: Behold my mother and my brethren.

Marriages and other relationships including families today are largely based on pleasure, which cannot succeed for ever without first a commitment , and then the sacrifices necessary to honour the commitment. “God wants me to be happy,” has been made to imply “God wants me to be happy without any pain or suffering”. In fact this false conception of love and happiness is probably at the core of the complete destruction of society beginning in the families, which we see all around us. Multiple marriages, and broken families.

“Love honour and obey, for better or for worse, till death do us part.” Few today see in these words, if they use them at all, a commitment to make sacrifices for life, which nearly all of society accepted only 50 or so years ago, who found great joy before God in sacrifice.

IN THE NEWS: Swaziland Girls Celebrate End of Sex Ban

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

25. Keep yourself lowly and little in your own eyes, that thus you may grow in this divine Heart.

August 24, 2005

(Joh 8:34-36) Jesus answered them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, every one who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not continue in the house for ever; the son continues for ever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.

LifeSite Special Report: How Stupid is Hollywood Really?

VIA Jim McCrea: The Logic of the Culture of Death

The term "Culture of death," coined by Pope John Paul II has an obvious meaning. There is, of course, death by abortion and euthanasia. There is death by AIDS. We have school shootings because moral values are no longer taught to students (you have the right to make up your own reality as the U.S. supreme court decided). There is, however, a deeper meaning to the term "Culture of death." When a human dies, the integrating and life giving principle, called the soul, leaves the body. Nothing is left, therefore, to co-ordinate the actions of the individual cells. The process of decomposition of the body after death, is simply the individual cells each going their own way. The philosophers have said that a corpse is not a true body but a congeries of bodies. There is no true unity so there is no longer a single being - better said, there is a multitude of beings in a heap in the form of a human body. It is the same way with society. Society is dead when it is no longer united with its "soul" or unifying principle, which is God. Each person goes his or her own way, in the name of "freedom." But it is the freedom of death.

The moral law given by God, and written in nature, is not an arbitrary set of rules, but rules determining the proper functioning of the human person, so that all component parts within the person work in harmony, and all persons work in harmony with each other. To follow the moral law as laid down by God, would bring peace into the individual and society. Those, agitated by the idea of "progress" and working to destroy traditional morality are simply putting society and everyone in it on a path of perpetual warfare, tormented discord, and ultimately destruction. The rejection of the moral law is an echoing of Lucifer's "non-serviam," once again, in which individuals wish to be their own gods. The specific horror of hell is that, not only is each person there vying to be number one god, but each faculty within each person is striving to be god as well. This striving for godhood, in hell, goes right down to the molecular level. The fire of hell is simply random agitation on the molecular level. The result of this complete disunity is eternal chaos and torment. This is why hell is an eternal and living death. Heaven, which is eternal peace and rest, comes about when everything and everyone is united to God who is Infinitely simple and unified, so that everything is animated from a single principle in order that everything be harmonized. Happiness is the abiding in harmony. Since the harmony of heaven is infinite, the happiness there is likewise infinite.

"Progressives" who agitate for a rejection of the traditional Christian moral law, say that they are doing so in the name of freedom. Something is only free, however, when it acts according to its nature. The more something is united to God, the freer it is, because God is the very cause of its being. To be perfectly united to God would not, therefore, be like being tethered to a Jupiter, which would of course be bondage. The Christian God is unlike any other God! To attempt to be free by being separated from God is to be simply enslaved to randomizing forces, and in the case of man, to his lower nature (even though it may feel good initially).

RELATED: Real Freedom "as Precious as It Is Scarce"

SEE ALSO: Scientists Speak Up on Mix of God and Science

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

24. You must offer yourself to God as a mere nothing to its Creator Who, finding no resistance, will give it such being as pleases Him.

August 23, 2005


Pope Benedict XVI on Monday won praise from Jews and respect from some Muslims for his blunt warnings about the rise of anti- Semitism and terrorism during his first foreign trip as pontiff - issues that are likely to define his papacy.

Commentators applauded Benedict for not hedging his words during his four-day visit to Cologne, Germany, for World Youth Day, a tactic that Germany's Handelsblatt daily said may make his job as a peacemaker more difficult but in the end showed his priorities.

"Apparently, he wants to leave a lot untouched and concentrate in office on the essentials," the newspaper said. The German-born Benedict became the second pontiff to enter a Jewish house of worship when he told Jewish leaders Friday at a synagogue in Cologne that he would continue the work of improving Catholic- Jewish relations set out by Pope John Paul II.

Benedict, who was forcibly enrolled in the Hitler Youth as a teenager, also condemned the "insane racist ideology, born of neo-paganism," that inspired the Holocaust and warned about the new rise of anti-Semitism - comments that drew praise from Jewish leaders around the world.

"The very symbol of your presence on the pulpit of Northern Europe's oldest synagogue - destroyed by some of your countrymen under the influence of a murderous and morally bankrupt regime, and rebuilt by the hopes of a saving remnant - demonstrates to the world that we can look to the future without erasing the past," the head of the New York-based Anti-Defamation League, Abra ham Foxman, wrote in a letter to the pope after the visit.

Benedict seemed to harden his stance on terrorism when he spoke to Germany's Muslim community. He warned that terrorism risks exposing "the darkness of a new barbarism" and urged Muslims to join Christians in fighting terrorism.

"Finally a pope who, before a Muslim delegation, condemns Islamic-rooted terrorism without exception," Italy's leading Islamic commentator, Magdi Allam, wrote in the Corriere della Sera daily, saying Benedict's speech amounted to a "new season" in Christian-Muslim relations.


Pope Benedict and Islam
Pope urges Muslims to work harder to combat terrorism
Pope warns of anti-Semitism
Pope Benedict: full text of speech to Jewish leaders


Vatican to start U.S. seminary evaluations
Pope to meet with head of schismatic Lefebvrites

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

23. Humble yourself whenever opportunity offers with true humility of heart.  This is all, I think, that the Heart of our Lord asks of you.

August 22, 2005

POPE BENEDICT XVI: "Religion constructed on a 'do-it-yourself' basis cannot ultimately help us," he said. "Anyone who has discovered Christ must lead others to him. A great joy cannot be kept to oneself."


Is Catholicism in Germany on the brink of a renaissance? The images of World Youth Day in Cologne were powerful indeed.

Hundreds of thousands of young people from around the globe cheered Pope Benedict XVI. They prayed fervently, went to confession in droves, and studied catechisms of their faith. Rosaries were passed around.

Some 800,000 flocked to the Saturday night vigil, a prayer service whose meaning most Catholics today are probably just dimly aware of. One million came to Sunday's papal Mass - the largest religious service in Germany's history.

As a member of the World Council of Churches put it, "The miracle of Cologne" had returned the Roman Catholic Church to a golden age. The faithful, from 197 countries, are not likely to forget how they coalesced in this community of Christians - a kind of United Nations under the aegis of Christ.

"We understood one another without speaking a word," a young woman said.

There where jubilant scenes wherever the pope and his followers came together on Cologne's streets and squares.

Cardinal Joachim Meisner, archbishop of Cologne, was exultant. The city, he said, was the "international capital of Catholicism" during the six-day festival. He was right. The faith and joy of the world's youth were truly infectious.

Young Catholics do not yet have the affection for Benedict that they had for John Paul. But 'Generation JP2' began to warm up to their hero's successor at World Youth Day.

"Benedetto! Benedetto!" they chanted again and again before the concluding Mass at Marienfeld park. Benedict waved, but only briefly, then appealed for quiet with a little gesture.

The pilgrims' patience, so characteristic during the sometimes chaotic days of the festival, was tried until the very end. Tens of thousands had to wait for many hours for trains and buses to take them away so that they could finally set off for home again.

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Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

22. I will do my utmost to be gentle and submissive, stifling any feelings of resentment or repugnance.

August 19, 2005


VIA Ronald Smith:

Are Masons Christians?

Q: Hi, Ron! I'm sure you're very busy but when you have time would you share with me why the Freemasons are not Christian? It's my understanding that they use ancient Egyptian incantations (sp?). Someone dear to me believes they are Christian and I know that they are not. May the Lord bless all your works! In Jesus through Mother Mary, Judith Smedley, Portland, OH

A: There is quite a bit written by Holy Church regarding Freemasonry. I will limit my response in this report to your particular question: Are Masons Christians? So that you understand where the Holy Catholic Church is coming from in condemning Masonry, a general statement is in order. The Catholic Church exists to assist Jesus in saving our souls and getting us to heaven. Holy Church does not make a habit of condemning people or organizations. Holy Church will only admonish a person or an organization that is involved in mortal sin for the purpose of helping the individual(s) involved to repent and convert.

“Christian: The designation of believers in Christ.”  Christians are then more identifiable by their study of and practice of: “Christian Doctrine: Those teachings that are considered applicable to all Christians for leading a Christian life. By Christian doctrine, the whole person, body, mind and soul, is developed according to the norms of reason and revelation with the help of God’s grace, in order to prepare the Christian for a happy and useful life here and for eternal happiness in the life to come.”  Central to the order of the lives of Catholic and Protestant Christians is obedience to the Ten Commandments. “Commandments of God: The Decalogue, the ‘Ten Words’ given by God to Moses on Mt. Sinai, are considered to be the divinely instituted ordinances concerning the requirements of true worship and morality, The Commandments of God articulate what is required for the attainment of human fulfillment and union with God. They are constituted by the covenant, giving material content to the covenantal demand for human fidelity and worship.”

Masons are of the belief that a person’s belief in God and obedience to Him is a ‘personal option’; you can choose to believe or not believe. Hence the conflict that separates Masons from being Christians. “Masonry is founded on Naturalism. That means that human nature and human reason are supreme, and that there are no truths revealed by God that men are bound to believe. The Naturalist denies the authority of the Catholic Church as God’s Voice upon earth and against that Church the hatred of Naturalism is chiefly claimed. Following the tenants of Naturalism, Masonry advocates the complete exclusion of the Church from any civic influence, banns all cooperation between Church and State, and relegates religion and the Church to the realm of private and personal life.”  “If the candidate for Masonry is not required to abjure his religion, this is not done out of reverence for religion, but to teach the great modern error that religion is a matter of indifference and that all religions are alike. Naturalism denies the existence of God, the spirituality and immortality of the human soul, truths which may be learned by the light of reason alone. Following this error, Masonry allows its votaries to accept the existence of God or to reject it. The Supreme Architect of the universe, the masonic term for God, may mean anything or nothing. With this basic truth of God’s existence weakened, all other truths that human reason can arrive at, soon disappear; namely that God created all things, that His Providence rules the universe, that the soul does not die but is destined for an eternal life. With the vanishing of these truths, private and public morality disappear. For they are the foundation on which all morality rests. Remove God from human life and there is no motive for right living, no meaning to justice or injustice.”

“Freemasonry’s religious tone has brought it into conflict with almost all the main branches of Christianity.”  As early as 1738, Pope Clement XII condemned Freemasonry and forbade Catholics to join Masonic lodges. Similar condemnations were promulgated by Benedict XIV, Pius VII and Leo XIII culminating in the proscription of Freemasonry by the 1917 Code of Canon Law (Canon 2335).”  “Scarcely 20 years after the organization of modern Masonry in 1717, Pope Clement XII forbade membership in the lodge, and since then seven other popes have warned the faithful against the dangers of Masonic naturalism to the Christian faith. The Roman Catholic Church prohibits its members from joining any form of Freemasonry.” Holy Church continues to this day to condemn Freemasonry and forbids Catholics to become members thereof! “Therefore the Church’s negative judgement in regard to Masonic associations remains unchanged since their principals have always been considered irreconcilable with the doctrine of the Church and therefore membership in them remains forbidden. The faithful who enroll in Masonic associations are in a state of grave sin and may not receive Holy Communion. (my emphasis)”.

“For hundreds of millions of Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox, and tens of millions of Protestants, the choice is clear. They may follow the admonition of their churches and avoid the lodge, or they may join the Masonic lodge and thereby reject the spiritual direction of their pope, bishops, or church leaders. If they follow the latter path, the churches recognize their divided allegiance by various penalties ranging from a reprimand to denial of full participation in the church to expulsion.”

I hope this has adequately answer your question. If I can be of further help, please ask. My ‘charge’ for this report: Please say one Hail Mary for me – thank you!

This report prepared on August 2, 2005 by Ronald Smith, 11701 Maplewood Road, Chardon, Ohio 44024-8482, E-mail: [email protected] Readers may copy and distribute this report as desired, without restrictions in number, as long as the content is not altered and is copied in its entirety.

† Let us recover by penance what we have lost by sin †

References available on request: Ronald Smith

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

19. Conform yourself as closely as possible to His humility and gentleness in dealing with your neighbor... Love those who humble and contradict you, for they are more useful to your perfection than those who flatter you.

August 18, 2005

(Gen 1:26-27) Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth." So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.


It’s eerie, really. Five centuries ago, lay university professors invoked Scripture and religion in order to attack and destroy an opponent whose views threatened to topple academia. Today, they are doing it again. The only difference is the targets – in the early 1600’s, the university professors were trying to destroy Galileo. Today, they’re trying to destroy the theory behind intelligent design, using very nearly the same techniques they used against Galileo.

Link to remainder of article:

SEE ALSO: The complexity of creation itself is evidence of a higher power at work. Darwin? Not a chance

VIA Jim McCrea: Evolution has to be distinguished from a theory about how it occurred (if it did) which is natural selection. Evolution is not necessarily natural selection. Things might have had common ancestry, but for the Christian, that would have to be a form of creation and intelligent design. The debate should not be between evolution and intelligent design, but natural selection and intelligent design. Natural selection claims that things came about randomly, which is mutually exclusive to God the creator. With God the creator, things did not come about randomly, but purposely the way they did by God's design.

These Catholic scientists that are alarmed that the we are distancing ourselves from the scientific community in denying natural selection are not even true Catholics if they deny God as creator. They are not even true scientists if they think that natural selection is scientific (n.b. there is absolutely no scientific evidence for natural selection as a mechanism for the origin of the species. It is pure materialistic dogma presented as fact by many scientists).

RELATED: Radical Darwinism and Catholicism: Philosophically Incompatible

IN THE NEWS: Intelligent Design Advocate Optimistic About New Science Standards in Kansas

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

18. Consider often that it is only the humble of heart that can enter into the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, converse with Him, love Him and be loved by Him.

August 17, 2005


(1)  The praise of a canticle for David. He that dwelleth in the aid of the most High, shall abide under the protection of the God of Jacob.
(2)  He shall say to the Lord: Thou art my protector, and my refuge: my God, in him will I trust.
(3)  For he hath delivered me from the snare of the hunters: and from the sharp word.
(4)  He will overshadow thee with his shoulders: and under his wings thou shalt trust.
(5)  His truth shall compass thee with a shield: thou shalt not be afraid of the terror of the night.
(6)  Of the arrow that flieth in the day, of the business that walketh about in the dark: of invasion, or of the noonday devil.
(7)  A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand: but it shall not come nigh thee.
(8)  But thou shalt consider with thy eyes: and shalt see the reward of the wicked.
(9)  Because thou, O Lord, art my hope: thou hast made the most High thy refuge.
(10)  There shall no evil come to thee: nor shall the scourge come near thy dwelling.
(11)  For he hath given his angels charge over thee; to keep thee in all thy ways.
(12)  In their hands they shall bear thee up: lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
(13)  Thou shalt walk upon the asp and the basilisk: and thou shalt trample under foot the lion and the dragon.
(14)  Because he hoped in me I will deliver him: I will protect him because he hath known my name.
(15)  He shall cry to me, and I will hear him: I am with him in tribulation, I will deliver him, and I will glorify him.
(16)  I will fill him with length of days; and I will shew him my salvation.

VIA Jim J. McCrea: Effective vs. Ineffective Prayer

I have had experiences in my life of unanswered prayers and bitterness towards God over certain serious situations.

But at other times, I have had the most wonderful answers to prayer and have seen God's power work in the most striking way.

What is the difference?

To know the difference between prayer that does not work and prayer that does work, we have to understand what prayer is. I have learned this from experience and God's grace.

First of all, prayer is not a formula to get God to do what you want - to say so many Hail Marys and you will get such and such a result. Forget all those publications that say that if you say this novena in such and such a way, and then publish the success of your prayer, you will get an answer to what you want infallibly.

Prayer is in essence an opening of our hearts to God. The essence of prayer is heart to heart commune with God. All our rituals and formal prayers are only a means to that end. Real prayer is to become so united with God that we know what His will is, so that we can so much more effectively pray.

Of course we ask that God grant us our needs in prayers of petition. God has specifically instructed us to do that. That type of prayer is not a "force" we apply to God to make Him change His mind. People make this mistake in praying Rosary after Rosary in an attitude of applying sufficient "prayer power" to get God to do what they want. Such prayer is generally not answered. Such prayer can actually lead to greater problems in life.

If that is not the prayer of petition, then what is?

The prayer of petition is an opening of our hearts to God so that He can give us what He desires to give us. That may involve prayer in our own words, or something more formal like the Rosary. But the most important thing in such a prayer is not the words we say or the rituals we act out (apart from our duties as Catholics or Christians in obedience to the Church or other lawful superiors), but the attitude of heart we adopt. We must adopt the attitude: "I seem to need this Lord, but you know what is best, so answer the prayer in the way you see fit." Such prayer is done quietly and confident in the Lord's power and love, rather than rattling it off quickly and fretfully as if the Lord is deaf and reluctant (arm twisting prayer).

"Arm twisting" prayer can make things worse in a person's life because it is but another way of asserting one's own will over God's. Even thought it seems to be prayer, it can actually shut God out. Correct words alone do not make for real prayer. Prayer is a matter of the heart. If the lips are saying "thy will be done" but the heart is saying "my will be done," it is not real prayer and is not pleasing to God.

Even though the Lord can give us anything without asking and He knows all of our needs, He still wants us to ask Him for what we need. This is because doing that instills a sense of dependence on His providence thus facilitating union with Him. Union with God is the end of all prayer.

Of course, we can never get all that we want in life and cannot be relieved of all suffering in this life. The prayer of petition can never be directed to that end, but only to the carrying out of God's will - a will that leads to peace in this life, the supplying of all of our real needs, and perfect and eternal happiness in heaven.

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

17. He wishes you to conform your heart to the virtues of His own. If you only knew how much you grieve Him when you fail in charity or humility, or when, through cowardice, you neglect to use the lights He gives you to make you withdraw from dissipation and self-introspection!

August 16, 2005

Cologne's Cardinal Joachim Meisner: "This is the first World Youth Day with two popes, one watching from above and the other taking part here below."


Pope Benedict XVI voiced hope that his upcoming trip to his native Germany for a youth gathering would spur a new European wave of faith, to counter what he described as a spiritual "fatigue" on the traditionally Christian continent.

In the interview with Vatican Radio's German edition broadcast Sunday, the pope also said "providence wanted my first trip abroad to take me to Germany."

Benedict will fly Thursday to Cologne to begin a four-day visit for World Youth Day, a Catholic jamboree of rallies and religious services with young people. His predecessor, Polish-born Pope John Paul II, had announced the choice of Cologne for the event, which is held every couple of years in a different part of the world and draws hundreds of thousands of participants.

Benedict said the event aimed for "a wave of new faith among young people, especially the youth in Germany and Europe."

In Germany, "many Christian things occur, but there is also a great fatigue, and we are so concerned with structural questions that the zest and the joy of faith are missing," the pontiff said.

"If this zest, this joy, to know Christ would come alive again and give the church in Germany and Europe a new dynamic, then I think the aim . . . would be achieved."

Speaking about affluent, northern European countries, Benedict told Vatican Radio, "It is evident that many heavy burdens exist in our modern Western society, driving us away from Christianity."

"Faith and God appear to be far away," the pontiff said.

Benedict voiced hope that Cologne would spur the "old continent" to look beyond the "missed opportunities in European history" to "rediscover the truth, purity and greatness, which gives us our future."

RELATED: Young people arrive in Cologne for Catholic festival


Shooting on the film adaptation of Dan Brown's runaway bestseller The Da Vinci Code at Lincoln Cathedral began yesterday against the backdrop of demonstrations outside by Catholics who take exception to Brown's "heresy".

Lincoln Cathedral is doubling for London's Westminster Abbey, which categorically refused filming permission to the film's makers, saying that the book was "theologically unsound". Lincoln Cathedral, however, allowed shooting for two weeks after the film's producers made a £100,000 donation to the cathedral.

However, this cut no ice with the protesters outside, led in a 12-hour prayer vigil by Sister Mary Michael, 61. The Catholic nun told reporters, "I just don't think it is right that they are filming this story here. I know the Bishop and Dean argue that it is fiction - and it might even be brilliant fiction - but it is against the very essence of what we believe."

RELATED: 'Da Vinci Code' filming divides British churches

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

16. Avoid over-eagerness and strive to model your interior and exterior upon the humble sweetness of the loving Heart of Jesus, doing each of your actions with the same tranquility as if you had but that alone to do.

August 12, 2005


POPE JOHN PAUL II, LOURDES, AUGUST 15, 2004: "Be men and women of freedom! But remember: human freedom is a freedom wounded by sin. It is a freedom which itself needs to be set free. Christ is its liberator; he is the one who "for freedom has set us free" (cf. Gal 5:1). Defend that freedom!

Dear friends, in this we know we can count on Mary, who, since she never yielded to sin, is the only creature who is perfectly free. I entrust you to her. Walk beside Mary as you journey towards the complete fulfilment of your humanity!"


According to the Christian Tradition, in the 22nd year after our Lord’s ascension into heaven, an angel appeared to Mary and told her the good news that her body would be taken to heaven where Jesus Christ, her Son, was waiting for her with the angels. Mary desired to see the Apostles of our Lord before her Assumption. The Apostles came quickly from the places where they were evangelizing. They gathered around her, praying. On the third day, Jesus appeared to Mary and the Apostles. Mary slept. Jesus asked his Apostles to take her body to the tomb. The Apostles went into a procession with the villagers. They laid Mary’s body in a tomb. St. Thomas arrived from India after three days. He asked to see her body to pay homage to the Virgin. The tomb was opened. It was empty. The Body was not found. A beautiful perfume came out of the tomb. St. Thomas fell down on his knees. All believed that Mary was taken to heaven in Body and Soul.

At the year 425, the Church of Jerusalem celebrated the memorial of Mary. At the year 550, the feast was called the Feast of Dormition. At the year 588, the Byzantine Emperor moved the Feast from January 18 to August 15. At the end of the 7th century, Pope Sergius I introduced the Feast of Dormition into Rome. He called it the Feast of the Assumption. At the year 1638, the King of France declared Mary, the protector of the kingdom. The Feast of the Assumption became a national feast day. At the year 1672, the Orthodox Church adopted the Feast on August 15. On November 1, 1950, Pope Pius XII declared the Assumption as a theological Dogma in the Catholic Church.



HOMILY BY FATHER ALTIER: August 15, 2004   Feast of the Assumption

HOMILY BY FATHER LAPPE: August 15, 2004  Feast of the Assumption

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

12. Above all, let us carefully keep silence on occasions that mortify us.  Let us be charitable and humble, both in our thoughts and words.

August 11, 2005

(Psa 122:6) Pray for the peace of Jerusalem! "May they prosper who love you!


Less than ten days before Israel's slated pullout from the Gaza Strip, Jerusalem police geared up for massive right-wing prayer vigils at the Western Wall this week. Police also prepped for possible ultra-nationalist protests on the Temple Mount on Sunday as the nation marks Tisha Be'Av and the destruction of the two ancient Jewish temples.

After two July demonstrations in the south fizzled out when police prevented protestors from nearing the Gaza Strip, the focus of police attention has again returned to Jerusalem - to the Temple Mount in particular.

The Temple Mount has been a flash-point of violence in the past, and Israeli security officials have repeatedly expressed concern that far-right extremists may try to carry out an attack there to sabotage the upcoming withdrawal from Gaza.

Last week's shooting attack by a Jewish terrorist on a bus in northern Israel, in which four Israeli-Arabs were killed, has only added to the built-in tensions at the site. Some Islamic leaders have called on their followers to flock to the site on Sunday. In years past, the super-sensitive site has been repeatedly closed down to non-Muslim visitors on Tisha Be'av - considered the darkest day on the Jewish calendar.

The compound was closed last year on Tisha Be'Av by order of Jerusalem police chief Ilan Franco "out of concern for public safety," just three days after former Internal Security Minister Tzahi Hanegbi publicly warned that Jewish extremists could carry an attack against Arabs at the ancient compound in order to torpedo Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's planned withdrawal from the Gaza Strip.

Jerusalem police spokesman Shmuel Ben-Ruby said Sunday that it was premature to speculate what - if any - restrictions police would impose on the site on Sunday. Ben-Ruby only noted that police were committed to preserving the peace.

Coupled with the possibility of an assassination attempt on the life of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, the threat of an attack by Jewish extremists on the Temple Mount is of the highest concern among Israeli security officials as Israel prepares to withdraw from Gaza, according to former Shin Bet head Avi Dichter.

Some 700 officers, including regular police paramilitary border troops and undercover forces, are regularly assigned to the Old City. With the walled-in compound heavily guarded by police security, officials have warned in the past that Jewish extremists might try to fire a missile or a rocket at the mosque compound on the site.

Several months ago, three Jewish extremists were questioned by police for allegedly planning to fire a missile at Jerusalem's Temple Mount in an effort to halt the Gaza pullout, but charges were never filed against them since they changed their minds even before they were arrested.

After undergoing a tight security check, thousands of Jewish and Christian visitors peacefully tour the Jerusalem holy site on a daily basis.


Timeline for Beginning of Israeli Pullout
Analysis: The week ahead
For one Jewish settler, the idea of leaving the West Bank is a sin
The Temple Mount and Land of Israel Faithful Movement Will March to the Temple Mount on Tisha b'Av

WND: Arabs, Israelis prepare Temple Mount showdown

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

11. You will not dispute nor show your repugnance and aversion, for meekness makes us bear everything without complaining.

August 10, 2005

(1Ti 6:11-12) But as for you, man of God, shun all this; aim at righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.

Christian believers in a hostile century

Phoenix Diocese bans politicians who support abortion, gay rights

Catholics must protect soul, help shape future of the American experiment

Most American Catholics have an idea of Europe shaped by its Christian history. The Catholic Church founded and nurtured the first universities. She inspired much of the great European art, music, philosophy and architecture of the last 15 centuries.

This happened naturally. The faith of the Apostles shaped the lives of believers. Believers, by their choices and actions over the centuries, then created the civilization that became Europe. Faith became habits of thought and action, which became culture. It’s no accident that all of the founders of the modern European unity movement were practicing Catholics. Their concern for Europe’s common good came directly from their Christian view of the world.

Even the Enlightenment, despite its bias against Christianity, could only emerge in a Christian culture. It needed Christian ideas of human freedom and dignity to grow. As historian Crane Brinton once wrote, “the Enlightenment is a child of Christianity, which may explain for our Freudian times why the Enlightenment was so hostile to Christianity.” As the faith of European Christians has dwindled over the last 70 years, however, so has the soul of their culture. So has their idea of human dignity. So has their culture’s sense of hope and purpose. Europe now faces its biggest population decline since the Black Death. All across the continent, Christians who practice their faith must deal with a growing, unfriendly secularism that has resulted in legal infanticide in the Netherlands, the redefinition of marriage in Spain and a complete exclusion of Christianity from any mention in the recently proposed European Constitution.

The problem isn’t just European. Closer to home, Canada has played out the same drama in a much shorter time. In a generation, Canada has gone from a religiously active culture to a mirror of Europe’s problems. Some of this can be blamed on scandals in the Church. But the roots go deeper than that.

Canada, like the United States, is locked in a struggle of national identity and values. The rapid push for legalization of homosexual “marriage” in Canada offers a useful lesson to Americans. So does a bizarre July 18 commentary on Canada’s national public radio from a former professor at the Royal Military College, aimed especially at the Catholic Church, that called for increased state control of religious practice and “registration” of religious believers. Anyone who wonders about the degree of hostility developing toward the Christian faith in our own back yard should listen to it carefully (see link below).

Here in the United States, Catholics and other religious believers still have the freedom, energy and skills to protect the soul — and to help shape the future — of the American experiment. We can’t do that by separating our religious and moral convictions from public discourse about the issues facing our country.

People of faith have always played an active role in American life. Catholic citizens need to continue that witness. We need to live our faith in our personal lives, and we need to reflect our Christian discipleship in our public choices and actions — always with love and respect for others, but always, nonetheless.

We don’t have to look very far for a glimpse of the future if we don’t.

To listen to the July 18 Canadian national public radio commentary, go to: The free RealPlayer plug-in is required.

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

10. The virtue of meekness will make you condescending towards your neighbor whom you will excuse, bearing charitably and in silence all the pain which may be caused you.

August 9, 2005

(John 9:10-11) They said to him, "Then how were your eyes opened?" He answered, "The man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes and said to me, 'Go to Silo'am and wash'; so I went and washed and received my sight."


Workers repairing a sewage pipe in the old city of Jerusalem have discovered the biblical Pool of Siloam, a freshwater reservoir that was a major gathering place for ancient Jews making religious pilgrimages to the city and the reputed site where Jesus cured a man blind from birth, according to the Gospel of John.

The pool was fed by the now famous Hezekiah's Tunnel and is "a much grander affair'' than archaeologists previously believed, with three tiers of stone stairs allowing easy access to the water, according to Hershel Shanks, editor of Biblical Archaeology Review, which reported the find Monday.

"Scholars have said that there wasn't a Pool of Siloam and that John was using a religious conceit'' to illustrate a point, said New Testament scholar James H. Charlesworth of the Princeton Theological Seminary. "Now we have found the Pool of Siloam . . . exactly where John said it was.'' A Gospel that was thought to be "pure theology is now shown to be grounded in history,'' he said.


Thousands of people saw the movie "Raiders of the Lost Ark", and most of them knew that Indiana Jones was based on a real person, famous archaeologist Dr. Vendyl Jones. Less well-known is another charismatic contender, who believes he will be the first to uncover the hiding place of this fabulous prize. He was recently in Jerusalem, and his name is Lt. Barry S. Roffman of the U.S. Coast Guard.

In the case of Vendyl Jones, he plans to uncover the lost Ark of the Covenant by Tisha b`Av. It was the resting place of the Ten Commandments, given to the Jews at Mt. Sinai and supposedly hidden just before the First Temple was destroyed. Although the Talmud says the Ark is hidden under the Temple Mount, Jones believes the tunnel continues 18 miles to the south and is now in the Judean Desert. Jones is not Jewish, although his daughter Sarah has converted and lives in Samaria (Shomron). However, he is learned in Torah and Talmud and has contact with a mysterious kabbalist who has now given him his blessing to reveal the Ark by Tisha B`Av (August 14th), the anniversary of the destruction of both the First and Second Temples.

But Jones is not alone in his search. Barry Roffman, an Orthodox Jew and a Lieutenant in the U.S. Coast Guard and author of Ark Code, ( ) believes that the Torah codes he has discovered can unlock the secret of the Ark`s location, and his findings are very different from those of Vendyl Jones. According to Roffman, there are maps encoded in the Torah. Key site names are encoded in such a way that the angles between Jerusalem, Arabic sites and a suspect Egyptian Ark site correspond to actual course headings on real world maps. The site, which he describes as 31 degrees 9 minutes North, 33 degrees 4 minutes East, is where a cloud of fire blocked the Egyptian army from the Israelites before we crossed the Sea of Reeds (Yam Suf) at Lake Bardawil in Northern Sinai, Egypt. He cites Jeremiah as the last prophet to control the Ark before finishing his life in that area of Egypt. Roffman`s research is unique, quite different from methods used by other Bible code researchers. It is rooted in his expertise as a Coast Guard military planner. He has explanations as to why Jeremiah took the Ark to the site of the splitting of the sea, and believes that the Ark`s purpose is to prevent a nuclear war between Israel and its enemies.

So now, the world is waiting with bated breath. Will it be Jones or Roffman who finds the Ark of the Covenant? Will it be found in Israel or in Egypt? Will it be discovered by means of ground-penetrating radar?

What will be the religious, political and scientific implications and ramifications if it is found? And what else can we learn of the future from the words encrypted in the Bible codes or the secrets of the Talmud? We may not have long to wait. The Nobel Laureate physicist, Richard Feynman, put it this way:

"To solve any problem that has never been solved before, you have to leave the door to the unknown, ajar."

MORE BIBLICAL ARCHEOLOGY:  The Galilee Boat Sails Through History

SEE ALSO: A Remarkable Find, But Is It King David's Palace?

Thoughts and Sayings of Saint Margaret Mary: Love of One's Neighbor, Charity, Humility

9. Plunge yourself often into the charity of that lovable Heart so that you may never act towards your neighbor in a manner which may, in the least, wound that virtue, never doing to others what you would not wish done to yourself.

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