Keep your eyes open!...






 

September 4, 2015  

(Rev 12:5-6) And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with an iron rod. And her son was taken up to God and to his throne. And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she had a place prepared by God, that there they should feed her, a thousand two hundred sixty days.

ALETEIA: Statue of Our Lady of Fatima to Travel to Syria to Protect Christians

EXCERPT TODAY'S CATHOLIC NEWS: Mary's Hand in the Journey of Faith

“One of the titles of our Blessed Mother is ‘spes nostra,’ ‘our hope,’” he said. “The beautiful mystery of Mary’s Assumption into heaven, the title of this church and patroness of this parish, is a great mystery of hope. The Blessed Virgin Mary, our mother, at the end of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heaven. The hope of humanity became a reality, entered the world and its history, many years earlier when Mary said ‘yes’ at the Annunciation. ‘She opened the door of our world to God Himself’ (Spe salvi 49). In her, God took flesh and became one of us. Through her, the Lord of life came into the world.”

“… The Virgin Mary is, therefore, for us a consoling sign of our hope,” Bishop Rhoades continued. “We can experience so much peace and consolation and hope when we are close to the Blessed Virgin Mary, when we take hold of her motherly hand as we journey through life. She will never let go. How many of the faithful, your ancestors in the faith here at Saint Mary’s Parish, grasped Mary’s hand in their journey of faith. They passed on to you the most beautiful gift, the gift of our Catholic faith. They taught you to follow Christ and to love Him and His holy mother. We all need Mary’s help and comfort to face the trials and challenges of daily life. We live in hope, that one day we will share in her same destiny. May Our Lady, who was assumed body and soul into heaven, assist us so that we may follow her into our Father’s house, the Kingdom of her Son!”

FROM THE MAILBAG
VIA
Holy Souls: September, the month dedicated to Our Mother of Sorrows

Let us always remember with humble and grateful hearts the great and selfless love which the Mother of Our Rdeemer - and our Mother - Our Dear Mary - has for each one of us !

LINKS: http://www.themostholyrosary.com/appendix1.htm, http://www.catholictradition.org/Passion/queen-martyrs2.htm, http://www.olrl.org/pray/msorrows.shtml

VIA A MOMENT WITH MARY: "The Blessed Virgin has given a new efficacy to the recitation of the Rosary"

Many think that the Rosary is essentially a weapon for the spiritual realm. This is a serious mistake. The Rosary is also an effective weapon to solve temporal problems of any kind, especially problems of political or military nature.

Sister Lucia (visionary of Our Lady of Fatima) confided to Father Fuentes on December 26, 1957: "The Most Holy Virgin in these last times in which we live has given a new efficacy to the recitation of the Rosary to such an extent that there is no problem, no matter how difficult it is, whether temporal or above all spiritual, in the personal life of each one of us, of our families... that cannot be solved by the Rosary. There is no problem, I tell you, no matter how difficult it is, that we cannot resolve by the prayer of the Holy Rosary."

History gives us many examples of military or political victories won by the Rosary. They were won against various opponents: the Cathars, Islam, the Protestants and the Communists.

VIA A MOMENT WITH MARY: Mary’s tears are true signs

A bas-relief of painted plaster representing the Virgin Mary and her Immaculate Heart crowned with thorns and inflamed (as in Fatima), was displayed in a humble home, at the head of the bed of the Lannuso spouses. From August 29, 1953, to September 1, 1953, this framed image shed real tears, which were tested in scientific labs.

The Sicilian bishops recognized the supernatural origin of the phenomenon and began building a church. At its dedication, Saint John Paul II said:

"Mary wept in La Salette, in the second half of the last century... at a time when Christianity in France was facing increasing hostility. She is weeping again here, in Syracuse, at the conclusion of the Second World War. We can interpret this in the context of these tragic events—the immense carnage caused by the conflict; the extermination of the sons and daughters of Israel; and the threat to Eastern Europe from openly atheistic Communism.

Mary’s tears are true signs—they indicate the presence of the Mother in the Church and in the world. A mother cries when she sees her sons threatened by an evil, whether spiritual or physical."

VIA A MOMENT WITH MARY: The Rosary saved Brazil

In the 1960s in Brazil, the farmers were suffering and some people were pushing for a redistribution of the land. It was the Cold War, and Communist committees, taking advantage of the people’s poverty, were forming everywhere, concealing arms depots to perpetrate an imminent coup and seize power.

Around the same time, a priest named Father Patrick Peyton gathered a crowd of nearly two million faithful in Rio de Janeiro for a Rosary crusade. When a Communist congress, which was to decide on a coup to seize power, opened in Belo Horizonte (one of the largest cities in the country), tens of thousands of women poured into the city streets, Rosary in hand that they recited aloud, and went to occupy the congress hall just before the session, preventing the Communists from entering.

The news of the fiasco spread as similar scenes were repeated elsewhere, prompting the Communists to flee abroad. It was the Rosary that saved Brazil from the takeover. This momentous episode was compared to a 'new Lepanto.'

The Desert Fathers: sayings of the Early Christian Monks: Humility

48. Syncletica of blessed memory said, 'A ship cannot be built without nails and no one can be saved without humility.
'


September 2, 2015
 

(Joh 20:21-23) He said therefore to them again: Peace be to you. As the Father hath sent me, I also send you. When he had said this, he breathed on them; and he said to them: Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them: and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.

HEADLINE: Abortion amnesty for Holy Year

Pope Francis will give all priests discretion during the Roman Catholic Church's upcoming Holy Year to formally forgive women who have had abortions, in the Argentine pontiff's latest move towards a more open and inclusive church.

In Church teaching, abortion is such a grave sin that those who procure or perform it incur an automatic excommunication, which can only be lifted by designated church officials.

However, from Dec. 8 to Nov. 26, during an extraordinary Holy Year or “Jubilee” on the theme of mercy, all priests will be able to do so if the women repent “with a contrite heart”, the pope said in a letter published by the Vatican on Tuesday.

Francis described the “existential and moral ordeal” faced by women who have terminated pregnancies and said he had “met so many women who bear in their heart the scar of this agonizing and painful decision”.

The pope's letter did not mention those who perform abortions.

Francis is the first non-European pope in 1,300 years and has marked himself out for tolerance on taboo topics. Although he has shown no intention of retracting the Church's opposition to abortion, he has alarmed conservatives by taking a less forceful tone than his predecessors.

“This is by no means an attempt to minimize the gravity of this sin, but to widen the possibility of showing mercy,” Vatican chief spokesman Father Federico Lombardi told reporters.

Deputy Vatican spokesman Father Ciro Benedettini said that “for now” the change would apply only during the Holy Year.

Usually only a bishop, missionary or the chief confessor of a diocese can offer absolution for an abortion, Benedettini said, although bishops in countries such as the United States and Britain, have delegated this authority to parish priests.

Boston College theology professor James Bretzke said the Pope was “emphasizing mercy and not retribution ... embracing reconciliation and not excommunication”.

TEXT OF POPE'S LETTER: https://press.vatican.va/content/salastampa/it/bollettino/pubblico/2015/09/01/0637/01386.html#ing

CANON LAWYER'S BLOG: Pope Francis on reconciliation for abortion

BALTIMORE CATECHISM: Lesson 17: On the Sacrament of Penance

CATHOLIC CULTURE (2009): ‘Vatican reveals sins only Pope can forgive’

The Desert Fathers: sayings of the Early Christian Monks: Humility

45. The same brother asked him, 'Do you think Satan persecuted the men of old as he persecutes us?' Sisois said, 'More, for now his doom has drawn nearer, and he is weakened.
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September 1, 2015
 

(Luk 6:22-23) Blessed shall you be when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you and shall reproach you and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. Be glad in that day and rejoice: for behold, your reward is great in heaven, For according to these things did their fathers to the prophets.

POPE FRANCIS:  “Let it also be a stimulus to legislators and government leaders to guarantee religious freedom everywhere, and to the international community to put an end to the violence and oppression.”

ALETEIA: As the West Sleeps, ISIS Spreads Throughout the Middle East

NEWS REPORT: Muslim “Breaking of the Crosses” in Syracuse, NY as Catholic Church converted to mosque

CRISIS MAGAZINE: Faith-Based Negotiations with Faith-Based Fanatics

REVIEW: The ISIS Caliphate and the Churches

CHRISTIAN TODAY: Iraqi archbishop: 'I quarrel with God daily' over Islamic State crisis

An Iraqi archbishop has said his faith has been challenged by the ongoing crisis in the Middle East.

Archbishop Bashar Warda of Irbil, Iraq, has admitted that while he would outwardly encourage the scores of Christians arriving in Irbil, in his heart he wrestles with why God has allowed such terrible things to happen.

"I don't understand what he is doing when I look at what has happened in the region," Archbishop Warda said.

"I quarrel with him every day."

According to the Catholic Herald, he said the arguments take place within his intimate relationship with God and, with the help of grace, his relationship withstands even the unimaginable challenges that he has faced over the past year.

"Before going to sleep, I usually hand all my crises, wishes, thoughts and sadness to him, so I can at least have some rest," Archbishop Warda told The Criterion, newspaper of the Archdiocese of Indianapolis.

"The next day, I usually wake up with his providence that I would never dream about."

More than 100,000 Christians and other persecuted minorities have sought refuge in Irbil in northern Iraq as they flee ISIS. With the threat of the extremist group now only 25 miles away, however, many Christians who fled to Irbil are moving on to refugee camps in Jordon, Lebanon and Turkey.

RELATED: ISIS has just ripped a community’s heart out- The monastery of Mar Elian, destroyed by ISIS, was a beacon of inter-faith co-operation

MORE: Persecuted Christians Walk 10 Hours in Dark of Night to Escape ISIS, Praise God for Still Being Alive

EXCERPT DEBKA.COM: ISIS declares war on the US dollar with the “gold dinar”

The Islamic State on Sunday, Aug. 30, launched a new campaign to destabilize the US Dollar with a 54-minute video tape, produced to the professional standards of New York Madison Avenue. for general distribution.

The ISIS tape calls on world markets to stop using the dollar and revert to the financial system of the medieval Muslim caliphates. It offers the following currency substitutes:

1. A dinar coin weighing 4.25 grams of 21-carat gold, worth $139 at current gold prices;
2. A silver “dirham” coin, currently in use in some Muslim countries such as Morocco, the United Arab Emirates, and parts of Libya, where ISIS is snapping up oil fields and installations.
3.  Two copper coins known as “fulus,” which are handy currency for small transactions and daily use.
4.  The jihadis also accept gold trinkets in lieu of coins.

The tape shows details of the coins’ production process at a plant in Mosul, ISIS’s Iraq headquarters. While the Islamists’ plan for war on the dollar may recall a bygone age in history, it is worth noting that just two years ago, Iran was paid for its oil sales to India in gold and gold ornaments, to beat the Western oil embargo.
 
Most financial circles have greeted the ISIS reach for world domination by the gold dinar as a stunt. They maintain that ISIS itself uses American dollars to buy arms on the black market and pay its fighters.

All the same, DEBKAfile’s counterterrorism experts disclose that the jihadis are deadly serious about their plan to wage a war of terror on the Western economy and financial system with four goals in view:

a) ISIS is not a run-of-the-mill terrorist organization, it is a movement seriously determined to forge an Islamic state and world order governed by its fundamentalist values.
b) Their territorial expansion and conquest of land has been accompanied by the pirating of natural resources, in their reach for affluence and control of the world’s economic levers.
ISIS’s consistent drive for terrain rich in oil, uranium, gold, silver and other natural resources, shows up in their grab for dominance in places like Libya, Iraq, Syria and the Sinai Peninsula. In Afghanistan, the Islamists have of late seized and ousted the Taliban from areas rich in precious metals.
c) The Islamic State is gaining a strong hand in the arms and oil black markets in the Middle East, Africa and parts of Europe. It is also gaining leverage for forcing traders to accept payment in gold dinars.
And there is no reason why they should refuse. Some of them already trade in bitcoins, a virtual currency with no national, economic or banking backing.
d)  Like Al Qaeda in its heyday of the 90s, ISIS has many secret sympathizers among the rich and powerful of the Gulf emirates. If a hundred of them could be persuaded that the jihadist cause required them to start trading in gold dinars in their international business transactions, including the halawa (word of mouth system), Islamist gold would soon start infiltrating the world’s financial system.

The first response came Monday, Aug. 31, from the radical Hizb ut-Tahrir of Britain. It advised examining the benefits of returning to the old Gold Standard for resolving the sovereign debt crisis threatening the Eurozone, instead of “printing counterfeit money on keyboards.”

The ISIS video was not released merely as a provocative propaganda thrust against the likes of Wall Street and Western financiers. The jihadis seriously believe that financial terrorism can be a destructive weapon for destabilizing the US-dominated global economy at least as devastating as a raging horde of suicide bombers.

The Desert Fathers: sayings of the Early Christian Monks: Humility

44. 'A brother once came to Sisois on the mountain of Antony, and as they were talking he said to Sisois, 'Have you reached the stature of Antony yet, abba?' He answered, 'If I had a single thought like Antony, I should leap toward heaven like a flame. But I know myself to be someone who can only with an effort keep his thoughts in check.'
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