Keep your eyes open!...


August 30, 2010 

"The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions."

COMMENTARY: Why Did A New Orleans Catholic College Host Obama on Katrina 5th Anniversary

VIA GUAM: Letter from Archbishop Anthony Apuron to Catholic Voters:

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

May the Peace of Our Lord Jesus Christ Be With You!

We are called to participate in the upcoming elections of our local leaders for the positions of Governor and Lt. Governor, Senator, Attorney General, and Delegate to the U.S. House of Representative. As we exercise our civic duties, we are faced with issues that affect the common good of the People of Guam.

Catholics have a moral obligation to promote the common good by voting in the upcoming primary and general election. By participating in the political process, a well-formed Christian conscience does not permit one to vote for a political program or an individual law that contradicts the fundamental contents of faith and morals. Thus, to the greatest extent possible, Catholics must avoid voting for any candidate who intends to support programs or laws that are intrinsically evil. When the candidates endorse morally harmful issues and policies, we must be responsible and vote in a way that limits the harm likely to be done.

For the Catholic voters, there are at least five (5) issues that concern actions that are intrinsically evil and must never be promoted by the law. Intrinsically evil actions are those that fundamentally conflict with the moral law and can never be performed under any circumstances. It is a serious sin to deliberately endorse or promote any of these actions. Candidates who promote and want to advance the common good will not support any action contrary to the non-negotiable actions involved with these issues.

The issues that are non-negotiable actions in the Catholic Church are the following: (1) Abortion, (2) Euthanasia, (3) Embryonic Stem Cell Research, (4) Human Cloning, and (5) Same-Sex Union. I would like to highlight at least three of the five that relates more to us on Guam.

1. Abortion Abortion is the intentional and direct killing of an innocent human being, and therefore it is a form of homicide. The church teaches that any law permitting abortion, it is “never licit to obey it, or take part in a propaganda campaign in favor of such law, or to vote for it.” The unborn child is always an innocent party, and no law may permit the taking of this life. Even when a child is conceived through rape or incest, the fault is not the child’s who should not suffer death for other’s sins.

2. Same – Sex Union Marriage is the union of one man and one woman. Legal recognition of any other union as ‘marriage’ undermines true marriage. Any legal recognition of same-sex union actually does individuals with tendencies for same sex a disfavor by encouraging them to persist in what is an objectively immoral arrangement.

Catholic lawmakers have a moral duty to express their opposition clearly and publicly and to vote against same-sex union. To vote in for, or advocate such action, is harmful to the common good and is gravely immoral.

3. Euthanasia Euthanasia is also known as “mercy killing” and is another form of homicide. No person has the right to take his own life, and no one has the right to take the life of any innocent person.

In euthanasia, the sick or elderly are killed by action or omission, out of a misplaced sense of compassion or misguided mercy. True compassion cannot include intentionally doing something intrinsically evil to another person.

The Church asks for each Catholic voter to adequately develop a well-formed conscience regarding key moral issues. A well-formed conscience will never contradict moral teaching. If you are unsure where your conscience is leading you, place your trust in the unwavering moral teachings of the Church. You can turn to your Catechism of the Catholic Church as an excellent source of authentic moral teaching.

Furthermore, the Church encourages every Catholic voter to not just vote based in part on your party affiliation, your earlier voting habits, or family voting traditions. Past voting habits may be how we determine support for the candidate, but we need to look further and understand the issues and where does each candidate stand on the issue. Be careful not to cast your vote based on the candidates’ appearance, personality, or ‘media savvy.’ Do not vote for candidates just because they declare themselves Catholic. Unfortunately, many self-described Catholic candidates reject basic Catholic teachings. Also, do not vote based on “what’s in it for me?” Make your decision based on which candidates will most likely promote the common good, even if you will not benefit directly or immediately from what they propose. Finally do not vote for the candidates who are right on lesser issues but who will vote contrary to the Church teachings on key moral issues (i.e. the five non-negotiable actions listed).

Therefore in the upcoming primary and the general election, please participate and exercise your civic duties as Catholic voters and make known your position by selecting the candidates who are willing to be accountable towards the common good of the People of Guam.

Through the intercession of Santa Marian Kamalen, Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores, and Blessed Pedro Calungson, let us pray that as we participate in the upcoming primary and general election, that the exercise of our civic duties will lead to eventually selection of responsible and accountable leaders who seeks the common good for the People of Guam. May we continue to be guided by the Holy Spirit in proclaiming the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Servus Tuus,
Most Rev. Anthony Sablan Apuron, OFM Cap., D.D.
Metropolitan Archbishop of Agana

AFRICA: Catholic bishops of Nigeria denounce corruption and cash-and-carry politics

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 26- "Brief Summary on Discernment"

5. Abstinence is the mother of health. The mother of abstinence is the thought of death and firm remembrance of our Lord's gall and vinegar.

August 27, 2010 


(Mat 28:19-20) Going therefore, teach ye all nations: baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. And behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.

ARCHBISHOP CHAPUT: Living within the truth: Religious liberty and Catholic mission in the new order of the world

: Catholics Launch Campaign to Lure Back Former Followers


VIA Australia:

VIA Sri Lanka:

Bread of Heaven International Prayer Group:

How To Be A Christ-Bearer!
By the late Father Kilian McGowan, C.P.

On the day of your Baptism, you were given a lighted candle along with a command to keep your Baptism without blame and to observe the commandments of God. Through the regenerating power of this sacrament, you were made a Christ-image and urged to carry that image faithfully through life until you looked upon the face of Christ at death.

That was the practical beginning of your vocation as a child of God. At the heart of this vocation was an urgent invitation to manifest Christ in the world through your Christian living. Given the mission of being a Christ-bearer, you have the obligation of manifesting Christ at every stage and in every circumstance of your life. For this reason you are called "the light of the world".

To bring salvation to mankind, Christ had to be seen, understood, and acknowledged as its Savior. Each succeeding generation must still see and accept our Blessed Savior. However, now it is you who make visible His saving power and His transforming grace. The need for this witnessing of Christ was probably never greater than at the present time.

Of course, the essential workmanship of our Lord is found in the hidden realm of souls. This work of our Savior must become apparent in the visible lives of Christians who live and work in the market place. The world will never know of the transforming power and work of Christ in souls unless His action becomes manifest in the holy lives of His followers.

How does this happen? His workmanship in your soul becomes obvious when it breaks out into the open through acts of virtue and a life of holiness. Whether in the unspectacular drudgery of daily duty, or in a wholehearted heroism like some of the martyrs behind the Iron Curtain, we must present to the world another vision of the Crucified Christ.

It's true that this kind of living will make you conspicuously different from the modern pagan. But it should be obvious that your standards of thought and action cannot be the same as his. That's why Cardinal Suhard of Paris once wrote of "our mission of dissimilarity" with the age in which we live.

The saints had a holy eagerness to manifest Christ. Men like Ignatius of Loyola, Francis of Assisi, and Paul of the Cross were constantly preoccupied with Christ. He was like a spiritual dynamo that supplied the energy for everything they said and did. He was more than this-He was their very life! That's why they could truly say with Saint Paul: "For me to live is Christ."

How can Christ become your life? When all your actions are set in motion by the thought of Him alone. When He becomes the life-giving source of your spiritual life and activity. We are willing enough to admit that without Him we can do nothing; but we must go much further-we should constantly be preoccupied with the thought of Him and His work.

A true Christian is conspicuously different also at the end of his life. For even on his deathbed he should manifest Christ to the world. Thus, he manifests his Savior even unto the end. Just as he manifested Christ the Savior by a holy life, now he can manifest Christ the Conqueror by a calm and hope-filled death. Our late universally loved Holy Father, Pope John XXIII, was outstanding in this-in life and in death.

Thus he tells the world that death is but the doorway to a fuller and more victorious life with Christ. That's what Saint Paul meant when he wrote: "For me to die is gain." Every Christian preaches the same message by a holy death.

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 26- "Brief Summary on Discernment"

3. Love of God is the foundation of exile. The opposite of this is self-evident.

August 26, 2010 

(Heb 12:1-2) And therefore we also having so great a cloud of witnesses over our head, laying aside every weight and sin which surrounds us, let us run by patience to the fight proposed to us: Looking on Jesus, the author and finisher of faith, who, having joy set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and now sitteth on the right hand of the throne of God.

NATIONAL CATHOLIC REGISTER: Christ's Heart and the Catholic

VIA Father Ted
Reflection by Father Ted – August 24, 2010

Dearest Jesus, help us to do Your Will, as You did the Will of the Father.

Give us the courage to teach our brothers and sister the truth – the truths that You taught and lived.

So many of my brothers and sisters who call themselves Catholics do not know You; they hardly know anything about You.

They do not realize that You created us to know You intimately so that we would love You and Your Father and Your Holy Spirit above anyone else.

They do not realize that what is most important in this life is to do all that we can to get to heaven.

Our most important task is to become saints.

Unless we truly get to know You, we will not be able to become saints.

Yesterday, we celebrated the feast day of Saint Rose of Lima. She knew that becoming a saint was her number one task. She, together with 4 other Peruvians from Lima, achieved that goal during the first half of the 17th century.

You prompted them to open their hearts to You and to Your Holy Spirit. And they – Rose of Lima, Martin de Porres, Archbishop Toribius, John Masias, and Francis Solano – responded.

Now prompt us to open our hearts to You and to Your Holy Spirit.

Help us to teach others how to become open to You. Give us the wisdom to instruct Your beloved children.

May we not be afraid to teach all of Your truths – especially by the way we strive to live these truths ourselves.

I know that the evil one has been working very hard to prevent us from proclaiming all the truths of Your Holy Roman Catholic Church.

Sadly I have seen how he has misguided so many – so that they no longer participate in Holy Mass every Sunday. These brothers and sisters do not realize that You teach them in the Mass from Your Holy Bible. They do not realize that You feed them with Yourself in the Holy Eucharist – to give them the strength they need to live each day. They do not realize how sin has blinded them and has weakened them. They do not realize what a wonderful gift Your Sacrament of Penance [confession – reconciliation] is. They do not realize how powerful the Rosary is – and without praying the Rosary daily, how difficult life can be.

Help us dearest Jesus, to live as You desire us to live – to become saints like Saint Rose, Saint Martin, Saint Toribius, Saint John, and Saint Francis.

You want us to become saints. May we say to You – “Yes, Lord, we do too.”

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 26- "Brief Summary on Discernment"

2. Unwavering hope is the door to detachment. The opposite of this is self-evident.

August 25, 2010 

(Mat 9:36-38) And seeing the multitudes, he had compassion on them: because they were distressed, and lying like sheep that have no shepherd. Then he saith to his disciples, The harvest indeed is great, but the labourers are few. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he send forth labourers into his harvest.

EDITORIAL: A Catholic bishop looks back gratefully on 87 years of celibacy

COMMENTARY: Bishop Armando X. Ochoa: Catholic Church advocates compassion

Our Lady of the Rosary Library : ON PRIESTLY DIGNITY AND PROPRIETY

The following are words of advice of Pope St. Pius X to priests on the need for priestly dignity and propriety:

"In order never to be guilty of any unedifying act, the priest must regulate his actions, his movements and his habits in harmony with the sublimity of his vocation. He who on the altar almost ceases to be mortal and takes on a divine form, remains always the same, even when he comes down from the holy hill and leaves the temple of the Lord. Wherever he is, wherever he goes, he never ceases to be a priest, and the serious reasons that compel him always to be grave and appropriate accompany him with his dignity everywhere.

"Hence he must have that gravity that will ensure that his words, his bearing, and his way of working arouse love, win authority and excite reverence. For, the very reasons that oblige him to be holy make it a duty for him to show it by his outward acts in order to edify all those with whom he is obliged to come into contact. A composed and dignified exterior is a powerful eloquence which wins souls in a much more efficacious manner than persuasive sermons. Nothing inspires greater confidence than an ecclesiastic who, never forgetting the dignity of his state, demonstrates in every situation that gravity which attracts and wins universal homage.

"If, on the contrary, he forgets the holiness of the sacred character which he bears indelibly impressed and engraved on his soul, and if he fails to show in his outward conduct a gravity superior to that of certain men of the world, then he causes his ministry and religion itself to be despised. For when gravity is wanting in its leaders, the people lose respect and veneration for them."

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 26- "Brief Summary on Discernment"

1. Firm faith is the mother of renunciation. The opposite of this is self-evident.

August 19, 2010 


(Luke 16:1-8) He also said to the disciples, "There was a rich man who had a steward, and charges were brought to him that this man was wasting his goods. And he called him and said to him, 'What is this that I hear about you? Turn in the account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward.' And the steward said to himself, 'What shall I do, since my master is taking the stewardship away from me? I am not strong enough to dig, and I am ashamed to beg. I have decided what to do, so that people may receive me into their houses when I am put out of the stewardship.' So, summoning his master's debtors one by one, he said to the first, 'How much do you owe my master?' He said, 'A hundred measures of oil.' And he said to him, 'Take your bill, and sit down quickly and write fifty.' Then he said to another, 'And how much do you owe?' He said, 'A hundred measures of wheat.' He said to him, 'Take your bill, and write eighty.' The master commended the dishonest steward for his shrewdness; for the sons of this world are more shrewd in dealing with their own generation than the sons of light.

HEADLINE: Local blind market watcher created Hindenburg Omen so investors can see downturns ahead 

REVIEW: The Recent Hindenburg Omen Observation

So what is a Hindenburg Omen? It is the alignment of several technical factors that measure the underlying condition of the stock market -- specifically the NYSE -- such that the probability that a stock market crash occurs is higher than normal, and the probability of a severe decline is quite high. This Omen has appeared before all of the stock market crashes, or panic events, of the past 25 years. All of them. No panic sell-off (greater than 15 percent) occurred over the past 25 years without the presence of a Hindenburg Omen. Another way of looking at it is, without a confirmed Hindenburg Omen, we are pretty safe. But we have one unconfirmed observation as of August 15th, 2010.

We got an official unconfirmed Hindenburg Omen observation Thursday, August 12th, 2010. All criteria were met. Both NYSE New 52 Week Highs (92) and New 52 Week Lows (81) exceeded 2.2 percent of NYSE traded issues (3,168). The McClellan Oscillator was negative -120.03, and the 50 Day Moving Average was Rising. New 52 Week Highs were not more than twice New 52 Week Lows, so it all added up to an official unconfirmed Hindenburg Omen observation Thursday. Once we get a second observation, we will have an official confirmed Hindenburg Omen. This would be the first Hindenburg Omen since 2008, which of course led to the massive stock market crash in the autumn 2008, and the third since the Bear Market started in 2007 (we got one in 2007, one in 2008 and maybe we will get one here in 2010). We got crashes after both the October 2007 and June 2008 Hindenburg Omens.

If we define a crash as a 15% decline, of the previous 27 confirmed Hindenburg Omen signals, eight (29.7 percent ) were followed by financial system threatening, life-as-we-know-it threatening stock market crashes. Three (11.1 percent) more were followed by stock market selling panics (10% to 14.9% declines). Four more (14.8 percent) resulted in sharp declines (8% to 9.9% drops). Six (22.2 percent) were followed by meaningful declines (5% to 7.9%), four (14.8 percent) saw mild declines (2.0% to 4.9%), and two (7.4 percent) were failures, with subsequent declines of 2.0% or less. Put another way, there is a 30 percent probability that a stock market crash -- the big one -- will occur after we get a confirmed (more than one in a cluster) Hindenburg Omen. There is a 40.8 percent probability that at least a panic sell-off will occur. There is a 55.6 percent probability that a sharp decline greater than 8.0 % will occur, and there is a 77.8 percent probability that a stock market decline of at least 5 percent will occur. Only one out of roughly 13 times will this signal fail.


Mr. Hindenburg Omen: Get Out Now, Before Market Crash
Celente: Stock Market Crash Before End of 2010
Shields Up! Hindenburg Approaches

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 26- "On discernment of thoughts, passions, and virtues"

88. By the ineffable providence of God, some have received holy returns for their toiling before their labours, some during their labours, some after labours, and some at the time of their death. It is a question which of them was rendered more humble.

August 18, 2010 

(Mat 24:6-8) And you shall hear of wars and rumours of wars. See that ye be not troubled. For these things must come to pass: but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: And there shall be pestilences and famines and earthquakes in places. Now all these are the beginnings of sorrows.

CAL THOMAS EDITORIAL: None dare call it ... what?

TEHRAN TIMES: Imminent nuclear plant startup has shocked enemies: envoy

HEADLINE: Iran Threatens 'Israel's Existence' If It Attacks

Iran will respond if Israel attacks its first nuclear power plant, which will begin loading fuel Aug. 21, according to the Persian Gulf country’s defense minister.

“In that case we will lose a power plant, but Israel’s existence will be in danger,” Ahmad Vahidi was cited as saying today by the state-run Mehr news agency, in response to questions about the possibility of an attack by Israel on the Russian-built atomic facility at Bushehr.

The Foreign Ministry’s spokesman, Ramin Mehmanparast, said today he “doubts” that Israel would “make such a dangerous move.” In comments on state television, he said, “Any aggression against this power plant will result in a serious reaction.”

Israeli leaders have said that all options are on the table in dealing with Iran’s nuclear aspirations. Iran is under four sets of United Nations sanctions over its nuclear program, which the U.S. and many of its allies say is aimed at creating a weapon. Iran, the second-largest oil producer in the Middle East, denies the allegation, saying it needs nuclear energy for civilian purposes, such as generating electricity.

UPDATE: John Bolton Says Three Days Left to Attack Iran

RELATED: Hizballah Prepares for Next War

FROM THE MAILBAG : While at first glance Americans think this will not affect them all that much, I am taking some thoughts from my frequent radio guest, Bill Salus, who has written the book Israelestine. Salus states, "Iran's apocalyptic-minded president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has publicly threatened the closing of Hormuz in retaliation for an Israeli or American strike upon his country.

"Additionally, two significant correlating events made the news in May, 2010. First, the Islamic Republic of Iran warned that it would launch terrorist attacks and suicide strikes inside of America in the event of a strike upon Iranian soil. Second, the Iranian Navy conducted a massive war exercise in the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian Gulf, called 'Judgment Day.' This drill reportedly demonstrated Iran's sole and sovereign ability to control those strategic bodies of water."

Salus continues, "Regarding the possibility of Iran playing the 'oil card' against America, on September 15, 2009 The Wall Street Journal published a Bret Stephens article entitled Obama Is Pushing Israel Towards War. In the article Stephens suggested that a Middle East War could push the price of oil up to $300 per barrel. Lately, on average, that precious black gold has been closing between $70 to $80 per barrel. Stephen's estimate suggests an oil-dependent world could be about to experience a spike at the pump of about four times the present amount. Iran still ranks number two behind Saudi Arabia in the OPEC oil cartel, which is responsible for two-thirds of the world's oil supply."

Are Americans, Chinese, Europeans, and others ready for such a steep increase? Americans could expect to feel pain in the waiting lines at the pump and in their pocket books, as increased transportation costs would certainly be reflected in the price of goods sold over the retail counters across the country. 

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 26- "On discernment of thoughts, passions, and virtues"

86. Our own strong desire and intention, with God's cooperation, precede every spiritual labour, both visible and mental; for if the first has not paved the way, the second is apt not to follow.

August 17, 2010

(Rev 12:1) And a great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.

POPE BENEDICT XVI: "Dear friends! I think this is a truth that should fill us with joy. Christianity does not proclaim merely a certain salvation of the soul in some imprecise place beyond, in which everything in this world that was precious and loved by us is erased, but it promises eternal life, "the life of the world to come": Nothing of what is precious and loved will be ruined, but will find its fulfillment in God. All the hairs of our head are numbered, Jesus said one day (cf. Matthew 10:30). The final world will also be the fulfillment of this earth, as St. Paul states: "creation itself would be set free from slavery to corruption and share in the glorious freedom of the children of God" (Romans 8:21)."

THE CATHOLIC LEADER: Our Lady is a sign of our hope

For the second week in a row, a special feast was celebrated at Masses this past Sunday.

The solemnity of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary fell on a Sunday this year and took precedence over the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time.

The Assumption is a holy day of obligation in Australia. When people ask me how many such days there are now, they are always surprised when I reply "54".

Every Sunday of the year is a holy day of obligation as well as Christmas and the Assumption.

The Roman Catholic Church believes that the Blessed Virgin Mary was "assumed" body and soul into heavenly glory when she died.

Although the Church in Jerusalem celebrated the death of Mary from the 5th century, the doctrine of her assumption was not formulated in the west until the late 6th century.

In Rome there was only one feast in honour of Mary (on January 1) until the Byzantine feast of the Assumption on August 15 was introduced into the universal calendar at the end of the 8th century.

In the Eastern Church, the feast is called the Dormition (literally "falling asleep") of Mary and is included among the 12 principal feasts of the year.

The earliest form of the celebration focused on Mary's death as a share in Christ's paschal mystery.

Later developments used scriptural imagery to make Mary's entrance into heaven more explicit.

On November 1 in the Marian year 1950 Pope Pius XII defined the doctrine of the Assumption and provided a new Mass for the feast which portrayed Mary as an image of the Church.

Vatican II enriched the celebration with an extensive selection of readings and prayers and a new preface.

The Feast of the Assumption is one of those few occasions in the Church year when two sets of readings are provided, one for the Vigil Mass and another for Masses celebrated on the day.

The only time when the Vigil readings must be used is at the Easter Vigil.

On other occasions, the texts of the day can be used at an evening Mass for pastoral reasons - the main one being to spare the preacher having to prepare two different homilies!

The readings of the day for the solemnity emphasise what God did in Mary.

The first reading, from the book of the Apocalypse, depicts "the woman" in the process of giving birth to a son and being threatened by a dragon.

God rescues them, evil is foiled, God's reign is established and Mary rejoices.

In the second reading from Corinthians, Paul reminds us that what was granted to Mary will be shared by all who follow Christ.

The Gospel emphasises that Mary's greatness comes from her participation in God's plan. Mary responds to Elizabeth's greeting with a splendid hymn of praise, the Magnificat, which Christians have sung at Evening Prayer from earliest times.

The preface of the Assumption gives us words of hope:

"Today the virgin Mother of God was taken up into heaven
to be the beginning and the pattern of the Church in its perfection,
and a sign of hope and comfort for your people on their pilgrim way."

MORE FROM ZENIT: On the Example of Mary- "A Source of Courage and Hope for All of Us"

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 26- "On discernment of thoughts, passions, and virtues"

85. Some have said that demons work against demons; but I know that they all seek our destruction.
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