Thursday, December 27, 2018

Let Us Worship, Thank and Love Our Redeemer and Fill Our Spirit with Joy

The Church offers to the Infant-God, during this holy Season, the tribute of Her profound adoration, the enthusiasm of Her exceeding joy, the return of Her unbounded gratitude, and the fondness of Her intense love. These offerings—adoration, joy, gratitude, and love—must be also those of every Christian to his Jesus, his Emmanuel. The prayers of the Liturgy will express all four sentiments in a way that no other devotions could do.

But, to better appropriate these admirable formulas of the Church, let us understand thoroughly the nature of each of these four sentiments.

Adoration - The first of our duties at Our Savior's Crib is Adoration—Religion's first act; but there is something in the Mystery of Our Lord's Birth which seems to make this duty doubly necessary. In Heaven the Angels veil their faces, and prostrate themselves before the throne of God; the 24 Elders are forever casting their crowns before the throne of the Lamb; what, then, shall we do—we who are sinners—now that this same great God shows Himself to us, humbled for our sakes, and stripped of all His glory?

Now that the duties of the creature to his Creator are fulfilled by the Creator Himself? Now that the eternal God bows down not only before the Sovereign Majesty of the Godhead, but even before sinful man, His creature?

Let us endeavor to make, by our profound adoration, some return to the God Who thus humbles Himself for us; let us thus give Him back some little of that whereof He has deprived Himself out of love for us, and in obedience to the will of His Father. It is incumbent on us to emulate, as far as possible, the sentiments of the Angels in Heaven, and never to approach the Divine Infant without bringing with us the incense of our soul's adoration, the protestation of our own extreme unworthiness, and lastly, the homage of our whole being. All this is due to the infinite Majesty of the Babe of Bethlehem, Who is the more worthy of every tribute we can pay Him, because He has made Himself so little for our sakes. Unhappy we, if the apparent weakness of the Divine Child, or the familiarity wherewith He is ready to caress us, should make us negligent in this our first duty, or forget what He is, and what we are!

The example of His Blessed Mother will teach us to be thus humble. Mary was humble in the presence of Her God, even before She became His Mother; but, once His Mother, She comported Herself before Him Who was Her God and Her Child with greater humility than ever. We too, poor sinners, sinners so long and so often, we must adore with all the power of our soul Him Who has come down so low: we must study to find out how by our self-humiliation to make him amends for this Crib, these swathing-bands, this eclipse of His glory.

Joy - But our Mother, the Church, does not only offer to the Infant God the tribute of Her profound adoration. The mystery of Emmanuel, that is, of God with us, is to Her a source of singular joy. Look at Her sublime Canticles for this Holy Season, and you will find the two sentiments admirably blended. Did not the very Angels come down and urge Her to it? She therefore imitates the elated Shepherds, who ran to Bethlehem, and the joy of the Three Wise Men, who were will-nigh out of themselves with delight when, on quitting Jerusalem, the star again appeared and led them to the Cave where the Child was. Joy at Christmas is a Christian instinct, which originated those many Carols, which, like so many other beautiful traditions of the ages of Faith, are unfortunately dying out or changing to empty secularisms.

Come, then, faithful Children of the Church, let us take our share in Her joy! This is not the season for sighing or for weeping. For unto us a Child is born! He for Whom we have been so long waiting is come; and He is come to dwell among us. Great, indeed, and long was our suspense; so much the more let us love our possessing Him. The day will too soon come when this Child, now born to us, will be the Man of Sorrows and then we will compassionate Him; but at present we must rejoice and be glad at His coming and sing round His Crib with the Angels. Heaven sends us a present of its own joy: we need joy, and 40 days are not too many for us to get it well into our hearts. The Scripture tells us that a secure mind is like a continual feast, and a secure mind can only be where there is peace; now it is Peace which these blessed days bring to the earth; Peace, say the Angels, to men of good will!

Gratitude - Intimately and inseparably united with this exquisite mystic joy is the sentiment of gratitude. Gratitude is indeed due to Him Who, neither deterred by our unworthiness nor restrained by the infinite respect which becomes His sovereign Majesty, deigned to be born of His own creature, and have a stable for His birthplace. Oh, how vehemently must He not have desired to advance the work of salvation, to remove everything which could make us afraid of approaching Him, and to encourage us, by His own example, to return, by the path of humility, to the Heaven we had strayed from by pride!

Gratefully, therefore, let us receive the precious gift—this Divine Child, our Deliverer. He is the Only-Begotten Son of the Father, that Father Who hath so loved the world as to give His only Son. He, the Son, unreservedly ratifies His Father's will, and comes to offer Himself because it is His own will. How, as the Apostle expresses it, hath not the Father with Him given us all things? O gift inestimable! How shall we be able to repay it by suitable gratitude, we who are so poor as not to know how to appreciate it? God alone, and the Divine Infant in His Crib, know the value of the mystery of Bethlehem, which is given to us.

Love - Shall our debt, then, never be paid? Not so; we can pay it by love, which, though finite, gives itself without measure, and may grow forever in intensity. For this reason, the Church, after She has offered Her adorations and hymns and gratitude, to Her Infant Savior, gives Him also Her most tender Love. She says to Him: "How beautiful art Thou, My Beloved One, and how comely! How sweet to Me is thy rising, O Divine Sun of Justice! How My heart glows in the warmth of Thy beams! Nay, dearest Jesus, the means Thou usest for gaining Me over to Thyself are irresistible—the feebleness and humility of a Child!" Thus do all Her words end in love; and Her adoration, praise, and thanksgiving, when She expresses them in Her canticles, are transformed into love.

Christians, let us imitate our Mother, and give our hearts to our Savior. The Shepherds offer Him their simple gifts, the Magi bring Him their rich presents, and no one must appear before the Divine Infant without something worthy of His acceptance. Know, then, that nothing will please Him, but that which He came to seek—our love. It was for this that He came down from Heaven. Hard indeed is that heart which can say, He shall not have my love!

These, then, are the duties we owe to our Divine Master in this His first Coming, which, as St. Bernard says, is in the flesh and in weakness, and is for the salvation, not for the judgment, of the world.

Dom Prospero Gueranger

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

The First Christmas in Freedom of Asia Bibi: with Her Husband and Surrounded by Uncertainty


Las hijas de Asia Bibi, en la imagen, no van a ver a su madre en Navidad
 Daughters of Asia Bibi and husband 

By José Luis Restán, COPE

For Asia Bibi this will be her first Christmas in freedom in the last nine years, and it will be a bittersweet Christmas because she will spend it, together with her husband, in a secret place under the protection of the Pakistani government. At the moment she cannot enjoy with all her family reunited or start a new life free of threats, because she is waiting for the Supreme Court of Pakistan to examine, probably in January, the request to review the acquittal of the crime of blasphemy against her, established by the High Court on October 31. Asia Bibi’s lawyers are confident that her acquittal will be definitively confirmed and then the government will grant the entire family a visa to travel to one of the countries that have offered them asylum.

Let's not forget that meanwhile, Asia and her family are being targeted by Islamist fanatics. In fact it is not known how she will celebrate Christmas, if she will be able to attend Christmas Mass, or if a priest will be allowed to visit her so that she can receive the Sacrament of Penance and the Eucharist that she so much wishes.

In any case, the history of Asia Bibi has allowed the horrendous abuses committed under the umbrella of the blasphemy law to come to light, which continues to produce innocent victims in a country that radical Islamists consider "the land of the pure." A land where Christians are ready to celebrate Christmas under strict security measures; a country in which violence and hatred have not succeeded in extinguishing the testimony of Jesus who is reborn.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

They’ve Finally Caught the Impostor and Imitator of Saint Nicholas of Myra

Saint Nicholas of Myra is the true Bishop who distributed gifts to the children of his diocese, but his main gift was the Word of God and the message of the Gospel distributed as the most important gift from God.

Santa Claus is an impostor, a caricature of Saint Nicholas, created by Coca Cola, and only serves for marketing purposes $$$$$$.

Unfortunately, modern Santa Claus has been paganized. The bishop's miter was replaced by the now famous red hat, and his pectoral cross completely disappeared. He "moved" from Turkey to the North Pole, where he lives in the snow with his deer.

The pagan Santa Claus captivated the imagination of publicists in the West. As Saint Nicholas was a bishop, he is represented dressed in red. That is precisely what the Coca Cola magnates liked, since red is also the advertising color of that corporation. They started using him in a pre-Christmas advertising campaign.

Today, "Santa Claus" is used to sell all kinds of things and almost nobody remembers his true story. It is time for Christians to recover our saint and teach our children that Christmas is the celebration of the Birth of God made child. Let us remember that Saint Nicholas was a saintly bishop who cared for the poor, especially children, and became famous for his charity.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Prayer reminder for the thirteenth day of each month

We remind you that today, as every 13th day of each month, we will join together in prayer for five minutes, for the intentions that are explained in the following link:

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Consecration to Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Wisdom, through the Blessed Virgin Mary

Consecration to Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Wisdom, through the Blessed Virgin Mary
(Kneeling before God, out loud, and with all our heart).

O Eternal and Incarnate Wisdom! O sweetest and most adorable Jesus! True God and true man, only son of the Eternal Father, and of Mary, always Virgin! I adore Thee profoundly in the bosom and splendors of Thy Father during eternity; and I adore Thee also in the virginal bosom of Mary, Thy most worthy Mother, in the time of Thine Incarnation.

I give Thee thanks for that Thou hast annihilated Thyself, taking the form of a slave in order to rescue me from the cruel slavery of the devil. I praise and glorify Thee for that Thou hast been pleased to submit Thyself to Mary, Thy holy Mother, in all things, in order to make me Thy faithful slave through her. But alas! Ungrateful and faithless as I have been, I have not kept the promises which I made so solemnly to Thee in my Baptism; I have not fulfilled my obligations; I do not deserve to be called Thy child, nor yet Thy slave; and as there is nothing in me which does not merit Thine anger and Thy repulse, I dare not come by myself before Thy most holy and august majesty. It is on this account that I have recourse to the intercession of Thy most holy Mother, whom Thou hast given me for a mediatrix with Thee. It is through her that I hope to obtain of Thee contrition, the pardon of my sins, and the acquisition and preservation of wisdom.

Hail, then, O Immaculate Mary, living tabernacle of the Divinity, where the Eternal Wisdom willed to be hidden and to be adored by angels and by men!

Hail, O Queen of Heaven and earth, to whose empire everything is subject which is under God.

Hail, O sure refuge of sinners, whose mercy fails no one. Hear the desires which I have of the divine Wisdom; and for that end receive the vows and offerings which in my lowliness I present to thee.

I, __________, a faithless sinner, renew and ratify today in thy hands the vows of my Baptism; I renounce forever Satan, his pomps and works; and I give myself entirely to Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Wisdom to carry my cross after him all the days of my live, and to be more faithful to Him than I have ever been before, in the presence of all the heavenly court, I choose thee this day for my Mother and mistress. I deliver and consecrate to thee, as thy slave, my body and soul, my goods, both interior and exterior, and even the value of all my good actions, past, present and future; leaving to thee the entire and full right of disposing of me, and all that belongs to me, without exception, according to thy good pleasure, for the greater glory of God in time and in eternity.

Receive, O benignant Virgin, this little offering of my slavery, in honor of, and in union with, that subjection which the Eternal Wisdom deigned to have to thy maternity, in homage to the power which both of you have over this poor sinner, and in thanksgiving for the privileges with which the Holy Trinity has favored thee. I declare that I wish henceforth, as thy true slave, to seek thy honor and to obey thee in all things.

O admirable Mother, present me to thy dear Son as His eternal slave, so that as He has redeemed me by thee, by thee He may receive me!

O Mother of mercy, grant me the grace to obtain the true Wisdom of God; and for that end receive me among those whom thou lovest and teachest, whom thou leadest, nourishest and protectest as thy children and thy slaves.

O faithful Virgin, make me in all things so perfect a disciple, imitator and slave of the Incarnate Wisdom, Jesus Christ thy Son, that I may attain, by thine intercession and by thine example, to the fulness of His age on earth and of His glory in Heaven. Amen.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Prayer of St. Pius X to the Immaculate Virgin Mary

O most holy Virgin who didst find favor in God’s sight and hast become His Mother; O Virgin, immaculate in body and soul, in thy faith and in thy love, look down with pity on the wretched who in our need seek thy powerful protection.

The evil serpent on whom was cast the primal curse continues, alas, to attack and ensnare the poor children of Eve. But thou, our Blessed Mother, our Queen and our Advocate, thou who from the first instant of thy conception didst crush the head of this cruel enemy, receive our prayers. United to thee with one heart, we beseech thee to present them before the throne of God.

May we never be caught in the snares around us, but rather may we all reach the harbor of salvation. Despite the awesome perils which threaten, may God’s Church and all Christian society sing out once again the hymn of deliverance, of victory and of peace. Amen.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Urgent Prayer

Oh Almighty God, who has given us Your Mother to be our Most Sweet Mother, with the deepest cry of our hearts, we beg You by Her merits to protect our unfortunate Nation, preserving in it the treasure of Catholic Faith and morality and the unrestricted adhesion to the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. Amen.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Saint Joseph, Model of Virtues

"Saint Joseph is thus an example of one of the most necessary virtues of our disturbed times. Chastity means the dominion of man over his own appetites, even the most violent ones, respect for one's dignity and honor, cleanliness and decorum in front of God and in front of men. When this virtue is lost, it brings as a consequence all kinds of terrible punishments; and the modern world knows this perfectly because, due to all the debauchery and impurity, we see how many plagues, disorders and catastrophes follow. As St. Paul says, you are the vessels of the Holy Ghost, you are members of Christ, do not soil your bodies with any kind of impurity."

Fr. Leonardo Castellani

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Prayer by Father Pro to the Virgin Mary Shortly Before His Martyrdom

Let me spend my life by your side, Holy Mother, accompanied by your bitter loneliness and your deep pain!... Let me feel in my soul the sad cry of your eyes and the distress of your heart!

I want in my life the mockery of Calvary; I want the slow agony of your son, the contempt, the ignominy, the infamy of his Cross. I want to be by your side, Most Sorrowful Mother, strengthening my spirit with your tears, consummating my sacrifice with your martyrdom, supporting my heart with your loneliness, loving my God and your God with the immolation of my being.

Monday, November 26, 2018

The Reason for My Hope

"With Mary everything is easy. I place all my confidence in her, despite the snarls of the world and thunders of hell. I say with St. Bernard: ‘In her I have placed unbounded confidence; she is the whole reason for my hope.’ …. Through Mary I will seek and find Jesus; I will crush the serpent’s head and overcome all my enemies as well as myself for the greater glory of God."

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen dixit

Dostoevsky wrote that in a future day men would say there is no crime, there is no sin, there is no guilt, there is only hunger; then men will come crying and fawning at our feet saying to us, "Give us bread." Nothing will matter except the economic.

A spirit of license makes a man refuse to commit himself to any standards. The right time is the way he sets his watch. The yardstick has the number of inches that he wills it to have. Liberty becomes license and unbounded license leads to unbounded tyranny. When society reaches this stage, and there is no standard of right and wrong outside of the individual himself, then the individual is defenseless against the onslaughts of cruder and more violent men who proclaim their own subjective sense of values. Once my idea of morality is just as good as your idea of morality, then the morality that is going to prevail is the morality that is stronger.

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

Saturday, November 3, 2018

About the Faithful Departed

"Therefore, the pains of the blessed souls in purgatory are terribly great, and they cannot fend for themselves. Saint Job says these words: Chained and tied with ropes of poverty, they are queens, and they are destined for the eternal kingdom, but they will not be able to take possession of it, and they will have to cry in exile until they are completely purified. Some theologians say that the souls in purgatory can mitigate their torments with their prayers, but in any case they will never be able to find in themselves enough and sufficient resources, so they will have to remain chained until they have paid their debt to Divine Justice, as a Cistercian friar, condemned to purgatory, said to the brother sacristan of his monastery: ‘Help me, he begged him, with your prayers, that I cannot do anything to help myself’, and the same repeats Saint Bonaventure: ‘So poor are those blessed souls, that they cannot pay their debts’.

What is true and an article of faith is that we can help with our suffrages and above all with our prayers to those holy souls. The Church praises these prayers and she herself gives us her example.

If we are not moved by this duty of charity, let us do it for the great pleasure we provide Jesus Christ, when He sees that we strive to break the chains of his beloved wives so that they may enjoy his love in heaven. Let us do it also for the thought of the many merits that by this means we acquire, since we make such an act of charity with those blessed souls; and we can be sure that they, in turn, grateful for the good we have given them, taking them out with our prayers of those pains and anticipating the time of their entrance into heaven, will not stop praying for us when they get to Heaven. Said the Lord, Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy. For if the kindly rewarder promises mercy to those who have mercy with their neighbors, with greater reason can we hope for our eternal salvation, if we make an effort to help those blessed souls, so afflicted and so beloved of God."

Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Feast of Christ the King

It is truly meet and just, right and profitable, for us, all times, and in all places, to give thanks to Thee, O Lord, the holy One, the Father almighty, the everlasting God: Who didst anoint with the oil of gladness Thine Only-begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, eternal Priest and King of the universe: that, offering Himself as a stainless peace-offering on the altar of the Cross, He might fulfill the pledges of man's redemption; and, having all creatures subject to His power, might deliver to Thy sublime majesty an eternal and universal kingdom, a kingdom of truth and life; a kingdom of holiness and grace, a kingdom of justice, love and peace. And therefore with the Angels and Archangels, with the Thrones and Dominations, and with all the array of the heavenly host, we sing a hymn to Thy glory, and unceasingly repeat: Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of hosts. Heaven and earth are full of Thy glory.
Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is He Who cometh in the name of the Lord.
Hosanna in the highest.

Preface of Christ the King

Friday, October 26, 2018

Nine Points that Prove that the Blessed Virgin Mary did not Have More Children besides Jesus Christ

By Brother Pedro Beltrán Sánchez and Fr. Jorge Luis Zarazúa Campa, fmap

Most of non-Catholic groups constantly attack the Virgin Mary, mainly denying her perpetual virginity; that is, although they accept her virginity before giving birth, they deny her virginity during childbirth and after it, especially noting that Our Lady had more children besides Our Lord. Some of the biblical texts they use to support their ideas are Mt. 13,46:47 and Mk. 3:31 where it says "His brethren" or where, according to the non-Catholic interpretation, even the names of the blood brothers of Jesus appear: "Joseph, James, Jude and Simon" (Mt 13:56; Mk 6:3).

Given this, we will point out nine proofs on which Catholics base to say that Mary was always a virgin. I hope that after reading them, you will not tell me the same that a Pentecostal pastor told me: "And what good is Mary’s virginity to me?" The answer would be: "And what is the point of speaking ill of it?" Be careful! The devil is the father of lies. Lest it be that instead of serving God you are serving the devil with your lies.

Here are the nine proofs of Mary's virginity:

1.- In the Bible, the word brother has different meanings: uncle, nephew, countryman, husband, etc. For example, in Gen 13:8 we see that Abraham tells Lot that they are "brothers", but in Gen 11:27 and Gen 12:5 it is clear that Abraham is Lot's uncle; they are, therefore, uncle and nephew, however they call themselves "brothers".

Therefore, we cannot say that the word "brother" in the Bible always refers to "blood brothers". Moreover, there are several idioms used by the people of God to refer to blood brothers, as can be seen in Canticle of Canticles 1:5, where the Shulamite emotionally says: "Do not consider me that I am brown, because the sun hath altered my color: the sons of my mother have fought against me, they have made me the keeper in the vineyards." In Psalm 50:20, the sacred writer uses both expressions: "brother", with a broader meaning, and "son of your mother", which is more specific: "You sit and speak against your brother; you slander your own mother's son.”

2.- With regard to Jesus’ brothers mentioned in Mk 6:3, Joseph, James, Jude and Simon; let us see if Joseph is really their father and Mary their mother. For example, in relation to James, in Mt 10:3 we see that his father is Alpheus = Clopas. Then, he is not the son of Saint Joseph.

With respect to the mother of James and Joseph, we see in the Bible that it is a woman called Mary (Mt 27:56, Mk 15:40) but then the Bible clarifies that it is a different Mary from the mother of Jesus: "Now there stood by the cross of Jesus, his mother and his mother's sister, Mary of Cleophas, and the mother of the sons of Zebedee” (Jn. 19:25); therefore, it is most likely that the mother of the "brothers of Jesus" is a relative (cousin) of the Virgin Mary and the so-called "brothers of Jesus" are, in reality, relatives (cousins) of Jesus.

3.- If Mary had more children, why did Jesus entrusted her to a stranger? (Jn 19, 25:27) The truth is that the Virgin Mary had no other children and that is why Jesus entrusted her to the beloved disciple, so that His mother would not remain alone.

4.- In Lk 2:41, we see that the family of Nazareth is mentioned: Jesus, Mary and Joseph; there is no talk about other children here, therefore there are not any other children.

5.- In Mk 6, it says, "the son of Mary" not "one of the children of Mary"; Jesus' relationship with Mary is always singular.

6.- In the biblical scheme, every time God announces through an angel to a woman that she will conceive and give birth to "a son", she only has one son. For example: God announces to Abraham that his wife, Sarah, will give birth to a son; well, Isaac is the only child conceived by Sarah. The same thing happens with Samson's mother (Jg. 13:3). Another case is the wife of Zacharias (Saint Elizabeth), who only had one son: Saint John the Baptist (Lk 1:3). In the case of Mary, she is also prophesied that she will "bear a son"; then she only gave birth to one son, therefore the biblical scheme was not broken either in the case of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

7.- The prophecy of Isaiah 7:14 says that "a Virgin shall conceive." The way in which people will recognize that Jesus is the Messiah is through His mother. If the mother of Jesus has more children and therefore she is not a virgin, the signal is lost. Since the Apostles recognized that Jesus was the Messiah and they knew His mother, we can conclude from this what the Church has always believed in: the perpetual virginity of Mary.

8.- The Bible says: "brothers of Jesus", but it does not say "the children of Mary". There is no text in the Bible that says "brothers of Jesus, children of Mary." See proof 1.

9.- During the first four centuries in the history of our Church, no one formulated the idea that the "brothers of Jesus" were His blood brothers. The first to do so was Helvidius, around 380 a. C., and Saint Jerome responded quickly to him with the text "Adversus Helvidium", on the perpetual virginity of Mary.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Saint Robert Bellarmine Dixit

"They are too presumptuous and foolish those people who in a matter of such importance about eternal happiness or eternal torment, dare to remain in a state of mortal sin, even for a day, seeing that they can be surprised by death at any moment, and knowing that after death there is no place for repentance and that once in hell there is no redemption."

Friday, September 28, 2018

The Punishment of Bad and Good

-Why God allows the suffering of the good when he punishes the acts of the wicked

One of the mysteries that strikes modern man, even if he has a Catholic faith, is that of the suffering of the good. When speaking in traditional Catholic circles about an imminent punishment of God to sinful humanity, like the Universal Flood, many feel skeptical and manifest that something like that would be unjust. The answer to these doubts was already given by Saint Augustine of Hippo in his work "The City of God".

We reproduce here chapter IX of the first book, in which he briefly summarizes a luminous argument in this regard.

Of the reasons for administering correction to bad and good together.

1. What, then, have the Christians suffered in that calamitous period, which would not profit everyone who duly and faithfully considered the following circumstances? First of all, they must humbly consider those very sins which have provoked God to fill the world with such terrible disasters; for although they be far from the excesses of wicked, immoral, and ungodly men, yet they do not judge themselves so clean removed from all faults as to be too good to suffer for these even temporal ills. For every man, however laudably he lives, yet yields in some points to the lust of the flesh. Though he do not fall into gross enormity of wickedness, and abandoned viciousness, and abominable profanity, yet he slips into some sins, either rarely or so much the more frequently as the sins seem of less account. But not to mention this, where can we readily find a man who holds in fit and just estimation those persons on account of whose revolting pride, luxury, and avarice, and cursed iniquities and impiety, God now smites the earth as His predictions threatened? Where is the man who lives with them in the style in which it becomes us to live with them? For often we wickedly blind ourselves to the occasions of teaching and admonishing them, sometimes even of reprimanding and chiding them, either because we shrink from the labour or are ashamed to offend them, or because we fear to lose good friendships, lest this should stand in the way of our advancement, or injure us in some worldly matter, which either our covetous disposition desires to obtain, or our weakness shrinks from losing.

So that, although the conduct of wicked men is distasteful to the good, and therefore they do not fall with them into that damnation which in the next life awaits such persons, yet, because they spare their damnable sins through fear, therefore, even though their own sins be slight and venial, they are justly scourged with the wicked in this world, though in eternity they quite escape punishment. Justly, when God afflicts them in common with the wicked, do they find this life bitter, through love of whose sweetness they declined to be bitter to these sinners.

2. If any one forbears to reprove and find fault with those who are doing wrong, because he seeks a more seasonable opportunity, or because he fears they may be made worse by his rebuke, or that other weak persons may be disheartened from endeavouring to lead a good and pious life, and may be driven from the faith; this man's omission seems to be occasioned not by covetousness, but by a charitable consideration. But what is blameworthy is, that they who themselves revolt from the conduct of the wicked, and live in quite another fashion, yet spare those faults in other men which they ought to reprehend and wean them from; and spare them because they fear to give offence, lest they should injure their interests in those things which good men may innocently and legitimately use,—though they use them more greedily than becomes persons who are strangers in this world, and profess the hope of a heavenly country.

For not only the weaker brethren, who enjoy married life, and have children (or desire to have them), and own houses and establishments, whom the apostle addresses in the churches, warning and instructing them how they should live, both the wives with their husbands, and the husbands with their wives, the children with their parents, and parents with their children, and servants with their masters, and masters with their servants,—not only do these weaker brethren gladly obtain and grudgingly lose many earthly and temporal things on account of which they dare not offend men whose polluted and wicked life greatly displeases them.

But those also who live at a higher level, who are not entangled in the meshes of married life, but use meagre food and raiment, do often take thought of their own safety and good name, and abstain from finding fault with the wicked, because they fear their wiles and violence. And although they do not fear them to such an extent as to be drawn to the commission of like iniquities, nay, not by any threats or violence soever; yet those very deeds which they refuse to share in the commission of, they often decline to find fault with, when possibly they might by finding fault prevent their commission. They abstain from interference, because they fear that, if it fail of good effect, their own safety or reputation may be damaged or destroyed; not because they see that their preservation and good name are needful, that they may be able to influence those who need their instruction, but rather because they weakly relish the flattery and respect of men, and fear the judgments of the people, and the pain or death of the body; that is to say, their non-intervention is the result of selfishness, and not of love.

3. Accordingly, this seems to me to be one principal reason why the good are chastised along with the wicked, when God is pleased to visit with temporal punishments the profligate manners of a community. They are punished together, not because they have spent an equally corrupt life, but because the good as well as the wicked, though not equally with them, love this present life; while they ought to hold it cheap, that the wicked, being admonished and reformed by their example, might lay hold of life eternal. And if they will not be the companions of the good in seeking life everlasting, they should be loved as enemies, and be dealt with patiently. For so long as they live, it remains uncertain whether they may not come to a better mind.

These selfish persons have more cause to fear than those to whom it was said through the prophet, "He is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand." For watchmen or overseers of the people are appointed in churches, that they may unsparingly rebuke sin. Nor is that man guiltless of the sin we speak of, who, though he be not a watchman, yet sees in the conduct of those with whom the relationships of this life bring him into contact, many things that should be blamed, and yet overlooks them, fearing to give offence, and lose such worldly blessings as may legitimately be desired, but which he too eagerly grasps.

Then, lastly, there is another reason why the good are afflicted with temporal calamities—the reason which Job's case exemplifies: that the human spirit may be proved, and that it may be manifested with what fortitude of pious trust, and with how unmercenary a love, it cleaves to God.

Source: Panorama Católico Internacional

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Do You Sin Habitually and with Obstinacy, or Accidentally Due to Your Weakness?

All sinners must bear in mind that there is a great difference between sinning by habit (with obstinacy) and sinning accidentally (by weakness); and know that it is necessary for us to stop committing habitual sins while WE ARE IS STILL ALIVE and not wait at the time of our death ...

"For the salvation of my soul, it is so necessary for me to get out of the habit of sinning, because habitual sins are the ones that lead men to Hell ..."

Saint Francis Xavier

Sunday, September 23, 2018

The Standard

"Let us never forget that an age prospers or dwindles in proportion to its devotion to the Holy Eucharist. This is the measure of its spiritual life and its faith, of its charity and its virtue."

Saint Peter Julian Eymard

Friday, September 21, 2018

Monday, September 17, 2018

Devotion to Mary, Effective Remedy against Impurity

“A well-known incident is related by Father Paul Segneri in his book “Christian Instructed.” A Roman youth of evil habits and laden with sins, went to confession to Father Niccolas Zuccbi. The confessor received him kindly, compassionated his misery, and told him that devotion to the blessed Lady would free him from his accursed vices. He therefore imposed it upon him as penance, that until the time of his next confession, every morning and evening, on rising and going to bed, he should recite a “Hail Mary” to the Virgin; making an offering to her of his eyes, hands, and his whole body, praying her to keep him as her own; and that he should kiss the ground three times.

The young man practiced this penance, and at first with very little improvement; but the priest continued to exhort him, encouraging him to trust in the patronage of Mary.

In the meantime, the penitent left home with some other companions, and travelled over the world. Having returned to Rome, he went again to seek his confessor, who to his great joy and surprise, found him entirely changed, and free from his former impurities.

“Father,” said the youth, “the blessed Virgin, for that little devotion which you taught me, has obtained for me this grace.” But the wonder did not cease here. The same confessor related this fact from the pulpit. An officer, who, for several years, had kept up an illicit intercourse with a certain woman, heard it, and proposed also himself to practice the same devotion, in order to free himself from that horrible tie which held him a slave of the devil (which intention is necessary for all such sinners, that the Virgin may aid them): and he also quitted his bad practice and changed his life.

But what followed? At the end of six months, foolishly and too confidently trusting in his strength, he wished, one day, to go and find that woman, to see if she had also changed her way of life. But on approaching the door of her house, where he was in manifest danger of falling again into sin, he felt himself thrust hack by an invisible force, and soon found himself distant from the house the whole length of the street, and before his own door; he was then enlightened to see clearly that Mary had thus rescued him from his destruction.

Thus we perceive how solicitous is our good mother, not only to take us away from sin, if we for that end commend ourselves to her, but also to protect us from the danger of falling into it again."

Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori, The Glories of Mary, Part II, Discourse IV.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Prayer reminder for the thirteenth day of each month

We remind you that today, as every 13th day of each month, we will join together in prayer for five minutes, for the intentions that are explained in the following link:

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Lord, Teach Me How To Pray!

Because prayer is necessary to me. Without it I cannot persevere.

Help me in my weakness. Enlighten my understanding. Strengthen my will. Take away from me the anxieties that disturb me. Help me so that when I am in solitude and in silence I dedicate myself to talk with you, to tell you about my miseries, to include you in my joys and sorrows, to renew my intentions before you, to pray for me and for everyone else...

Teach me how to pray!

Teach me how to meditate on the mysteries of your life, on the example of your virtues, on your love for me, on your triumphs and on your glory... Teach me how to meditate on your Blessed Mother, Mary, on your saints, on the truths that you preached.

Lord, teach me how to pray!

Fr. Alberto Moreno, El día del retiro mensual, p. 150.