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Showing posts from April, 2011

Why Pope John Paul II is a Saint

After Pope John Paul II’s death on the Feast of Divine Mercy in 2005, an estimated two billion people around the world watched the funeral Mass of Pope John Paul II. Tens of thousands gathered in St. Peter’s Square chanted “Santo Subito” or “Sainthood Now!” Six years later, Catholics across the globe will be watching as Pope Benedict XVI proceeds with the Beautification of John Paul II. Websites praise and remember the good works and challenges met by the Polish Pope whose papacy spanned 26 years, during which time he inspired youth and laity for the Church. The process of becoming declared a saint in the church is not undertaken lightly. Although Pope Benedict XVI waived the five-year waiting requirement, before John Paul II could be honored this May 1, his life required meticulous investigation by an ecclesiastical tribunal. The tribunal demands concrete evidence and incontrovertible proof of statements toward his cause. A postulator leads the investigation, and must be able to cer

God's Love Conquers Death

Glory to God. Alleluia! Alleluia! He has saved us. Like a Father, He does all he can for his children. He instructs us, tells us what to do, sets boundaries, wants us to be in communion with him. Yet like petulant children we stray, we rebel. Eventually, many of us come back in humility, seeking love and forgiveness like the story of the prodigal son. And when we do, He accepts our confession and forgives us. He never abandons us. I remember clearly the first time I attended Easter Mass and truly understood that because of Christ’s surrender we would all be redeemed and welcomed into heaven free of our earthly sins. It was the first Easter Mass after my grandfather died the previous June. The idea that my grandfather now lived an eternal life in heaven, without any of his earthly sufferings, filled me with overwhelming emotion. The anniversary of my Godson’s death is only two weeks away . After Nick died, I found it extremely difficult to attend Mass , especially during last year’s

Stay Awake to the Presence of God

Earlier this week, Pope Benedi ct XVI addressed the 13,000+ people gathered for a general audience in St. Peter's Square. He cautioned that there is "a certain callousness of the soul towards the power of evil, an insensitivity to all the evil in the world: we do not want to be disturbed by these things, we want to forget, perhaps, we think, it is not important. It is not only insensitivity to evil, but also insensitivity to God.” When Christ asked his disciples to stay and keep watch with him at Gethsemane, He also calls all of us to remain alert and aware of the presence of God and guard against the ability of evil to infiltrate our lives. Pope Benedict drew a comparison for the world today, that just as the apostles grew drowsy and fell asleep, “ It 's our very sleepiness to the presence of God that renders us insensitive to evil: we don’t hear God because we don’t want to be disturbed, and so we remain indifferent to evil” On this solemn day of our Lord’s crucifixi

Texas Sonogram Bill will provide valuable information

In late February, I announced my startling realization of an unplanned pregnancy . Since sharing the news, I’ve received an overwhelming amount of supportive comments, prayers, and well wishes, which sustained me through the initial shock. As my family begins planning for the big changes coming in early fall, I’m finally easing into acceptance over this turn of events. I’ve noticed quite a few changes in the nine years between my pregnancies. Prenatal vitamins now include a DHA supplement and maternity clothes show off your belly, instead of covering it like a tent. But by far, the biggest change is the increased access to sonograms. With my first pregnancy, we listened for the heartbeat after 12 weeks with a Doppler, but only received one ultrasound at 22 weeks to check the baby’s growth and organ development. With my second pregnancy, we received the growth and organ development ultrasound at 18 weeks, plus an additional ultrasound after complications developed at 28 weeks. With th

Video Explains Holy Week

As we enter the holiest week in our Christian faith, maybe a few of you are quietly wondering what is Holy Week all about? Triduum? The talented crew over at Busted Halo have once again put together an informative video to enlighten people. As Lent comes to an end, Holy Week marks the pinnacle of our preparations in making ourselves ready to begin a new life at Easter. The video gives you a glimpse into the most reverent, meaningful moments of our faith as we honor the Passion of our Lord, Jesus Christ and his ultimate sacrifice in God's covenant for our redemption. If you've never been to Mass on Holy Thursday to witness the foot washing, or venerated the cross on Good Friday, or prayed during Saturday night's Easter Vigil, check your local parish listings and make plans to attend one or all this year.

Family TV time

How often do you sit down to watch tv with your children, only to grab for the remote during commercials or suddenly realize the content isn't quite appropriate for all viewers in the room? Too often in my house - especially when it comes to the commercials. Make plans this Saturday (tomorrow night) to gather the family for a special Family Movie Night with Truth Be Told . When leading marriage counselor Annie Morgan (Candace Cameron Bure) is offered an opportunity to host a relationship talk show, she jumps at the chance. But fearful that being single might ruin her big break, she conspires with an old college friend and recent widower, Mark Crane (David James Elliott), to pose as a married couple with kids. Their story starts to unravel when Annie and Mark join her eccentric soon-to-be boss (Ronny Cox) for a weekend at his ranch in New Mexico. Comical misunderstandings mark the event as Annie struggles to keep up the ruse, finding herself emotionally invested and conflicted by

Federal Government Shutdown Appears Imminent

You can’t turn on the news without hearing the countdown towards a possible government shutdown expected tomorrow evening. How did we get to this? It is the responsibility of the House, Senate, and President to pass and sign a budget resolution before the government fiscal year begins. The Congressional Budget Act set the deadline to complete action on the FY11 budget as April 15, 2010 ; however, the House and Senate, led by Democratic majorities, failed to offer a proposal . In June 2010, then-House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) announced that the House would not consider the budget until after the November 2 election. A series of short term funding resolutions were offered and passed to keep the government running in the absence of a formal budget. In late January 2011, while the new House of Representatives worked towards developing the FY11 budget, Democrats (who did not propose or pass a budget prior to the election) begin talking in the media about a government shutdown.

Are You Ready for the New Translation

Beginning November 27, 2011, the words we are so familiar with reciting during Mass will change when the new English Translation of the Mass goes into practice. While the greatest number of changes affect what the Priest says, many of our familiar responses will be altered also. Catholic parishes are already designing parish wide training sessions to introduce these changes to their members. Guide to the New Translation To help familiarize parishioners with the new changes, Ascension Press released a small Q&A booklet titled A Guide to the New Translation of the Mass by Edward Sri . One of the changes brought about by Vatican II was the allowance for the Mass to be said in the vernacular, or common, language of the people. However, the English translations varied from one English-speaking country to another. (If you’ve ever had a conversation with someone from Australia or England, you’re aware how our vocabulary differs.) In the first English missal, published in 1973, the Lati