Tuesday, January 22, 2019
SAINT VINCENT OF SARAGOSSA-ROE vs. WADE
Psalm 111, verse 5
5 He gives food to those who fear him, he remembers his covenant forever.
This is probably a reference to the manna in the desert, which elsewhere is seen as a type of the Eucharist.
I became acquainted with Saint Vincent during a time I was suffering with a half inch burst in the last disk in my back. I was almost paralyzed, and the pain was intense with a burning sensation below the knee on my left leg. I was considering treatment using a VAC-D table that was then a new treatment, yet I was hesitant. After reading the story of St. Vincent I asked for his help with my struggle-it then occurred to me to go get stretched on the rack, which VAC-D resembles as St. Vincent was. After 25 treatments my disk is now been healed and I have recovered to 90% before the rupture. I thank the intersession of St. Vincent.
Vincent of Saragossa was one of the Church's three most illustrious deacons, the other two being Stephen and Lawrence. He is also Spain's most renowned martyr. Ordained deacon by Bishop Valerius of Saragossa, he was taken in chains to Valencia during the Diocletian persecution and put to death. From legend we have the following details of his martyrdom. After brutal scourging in the presence of many witnesses, he was stretched on the rack; but neither torture nor blandishments nor threats could undermine the strength and courage of his faith. Next, he was cast on a heated grating, lacerated with iron hooks, and seared with hot metal plates. Then he was returned to prison, where the floor was heavily strewn with pieces of broken glass. A heavenly brightness flooded the entire dungeon, filling all who saw it with greatest awe.
After this he was placed on a soft bed in the hope that lenient treatment would induce apostasy, since torture had proven ineffective. But strengthened by faith in Christ Jesus and the hope of everlasting life, Vincent maintained an invincible spirit and overcame all efforts, whether by fire, sword, rack, or torture to induce defection. He persevered to the end and gained the heavenly crown of martyrdom.
Roe vs. Wade Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children
January 22 is the anniversary of Roe v. Wade and the day established by the Church of penance for abortion, has been formally named as the “Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children.” On this day your parish, school or religious formation program may celebrate the Mass for Giving Thanks to God for the Gift of Human Life. This Mass, found in our newly-translated Missal, may now be used on occasions to celebrate the dignity of human life. In addition to this special Mass on this day, perhaps your parish, school or religious formation program could encourage traditional forms of penance, host pro-life and chastity speakers, lead informative projects that will directly build up the culture of life, show a pro-life film, raise funds for local crisis pregnancy centers or offer additional prayer services.
WASHINGTON–Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, chair of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' (USCCB) Committee on Pro-Life Activities, thanked and praised the House of Representatives for passing the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act January 20, 2018 with a bi-partisan vote of 241-183.
"As Chairman of the United States Bishops' Committee, I offer gratitude and praise to the House of Representatives for passing the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (H.R. 4712). This common-sense legislation offers a simple and widely supported proposition: a child born alive following an abortion should receive the same degree of care to preserve her life and health as would be given to any other child born alive at the same gestational age. I call on the Senate to pass this bill as well and ensure that the lethal mentality of Roe does not claim new victims – vulnerable human beings struggling for their lives outside the womb."
Attend Mass today.
Celebration of Life Day is when we take a step back and truly appreciate our children and grandchildren. Granted, some may do this on an everyday basis, but it’s an opportunity to look at our young ones’ lives from a different angle, think about what it is that makes them truly special, and of course, to lavish treats upon them if we so wish, be it an ice cream or a trip to Disneyland. It can be easy to forget that our children and grandchildren are people in their own right. You’ve helped them to discover themselves over the years, but you can’t take all the credit. Their life choices are ultimately down to them; sometimes they’ll do you proud, and other times, as is the case with us all, they’ll make mistakes. So be the one who’s there to offer congratulations, or encouragement to pick themselves up when they fall. And above all else, as cheesy as it may sound, show that you love them.
The Love of Life
Love is not merely a feeling but is rather the desire for the best possible good for those whom we love. Through our natural intelligence and through Divine Revelation we become aware of the value of this most basic of all gifts which is life. Mere reason leads us to comprehend that it is better to be alive than never have had been in existence. The knowledge of the value of life that comes through revelation leads us to understand better this gift and to appreciate it: as a result, we worship and love more and more the Giver of this gift. This love is what moves us to protect the life of the unborn or any who might be unjustly treated. We are also led to protect women that might feel tempted or forced to commit abortion, as we know the devastating consequences that abortion will have in their lives. Last but not least we have to love, even if most of them seem to be utterly unlovable, the many perpetrators of abortion: medical personnel, and pro-abortion activists and politicians. We have to do everything that we can to convince them of their errors so that they repent and change their ways, both for their own benefit and for the benefit of society. All human beings are created in the image and likeness of God. Using a traditional scholastic term, we can state that He is the exemplary cause of every human being, in other words, He is the model on which all human beings are created. He looked upon himself and wished that other beings would share in His own happiness. So, if we reflect upon ourselves, we can begin to understand our participation in the greatness of our Creator. This participation on His greatness leads us to comprehend that He has brought us out of nothing with a purpose, because knowing His intelligence and His loving nature it is clear that all His actions are always guided by a magnificent purpose. The first intention for which He has created us is that we should enjoy for an eternity His loving company in Heaven. All human persons are called to this eternal and loving company, no one is excluded, save those who, through their own actions, exclude themselves. This manner of creation brings us to understand the unique essential dignity of every human being. A dignity that is not lost for any deprivation of the many external perfections that we might expect to find in a human person. A person might be born with a disability, or may suffer disability through injury or disease, but these deprivations do not affect his basic dignity. A Christian also has the hope that one day when the doors of Paradise will be opened for those children, all their human imperfections will be healed, and they will enjoy forever the beatific vision that we all long for. We are also created to be collaborators in the salvation of the World. The Lord normally does not intervene directly in the world; He does it through our free collaboration in his plans of salvation. He gives to us the saving truths through Holy Scripture, our natural reason and the mediation of the Church and we have to manifest them in our daily lives. If we love those truths, we should be impelled to share them with all whom the Lord places in front of us. So, when we speak with love and conviction of those truths, we cannot be accused of carrying out an exaggerated rhetoric when we defend human life from its biological beginning until natural death. Nobody in his right mind can call it "vitriolic rhetoric" when we denounce that millions upon millions of unborn babies have been killed in the womb in the U.S. and in the rest of the world. It is literally a question of life and death, for the victim, for the mother of the baby and for the perpetrator of abortion, assisted suicide or euthanasia. The victim will have his earthly life terminated; the mother will suffer greatly for her actions, and the perpetrator and the mother will live under the shadow of the unhappiness of having rejected the loving truths of their Creator and certainly they will place their eternal salvation in jeopardy. Our main solidarity has to be always with the victim of the crime, because if the conscience of the nation is not moved by this growing injustice, we know that a growing number will be victimized in the future. Our solidarity is also with the mothers of those babies because often they have been misled or forced into committing this terrible action.
Last but not least we wish and pray that all abortionists will understand the terrible consequences of their actions and be converted.
Row vs. Wall
Bishops weight in on the wall
“Today more than ever, our societies need ‘artisans of peace’ who can be messengers and authentic witnesses of God the Father, who wills the good and the happiness of the human family.”
· Political leaders must come together to ensure a bipartisan solution is reached which recognizes the economic struggle that many families are facing including those dependent on federal workers and those assisted by critical nutrition and housing programs.
· We are encouraged by the President’s openness to providing legislative relief for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders and existing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) recipients. However, we understand that the President’s proposal would only provide temporary relief, leaving many in a continued vulnerable state.
· We believe that a permanent legislative solution for TPS holders and for all Dreamers is vital.
· Moreover, the proposal calls for the construction of a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico, a proposal that our brother bishops on both sides of the U.S. border with Mexico oppose, and it suggests changes in current law that would make it more difficult for unaccompanied children and asylum seekers to access protection.
· Throughout our parishes, there are many DACA youth and TPS holders, who have lived substantial parts of their lives in the U.S. contributing to this country.
· We listen and understand the fear and uncertainty they and their families face and the anguish that they are currently experiencing as their existing immigration protections hang in the balance and come to an end.
· Temporary relief will not ease those fears or quell that anxiety. It is for this reason that we have long advocated for comprehensive immigration reform; reform that will provide permanent solutions:
o including border security,
o protection for vulnerable unaccompanied children
o and asylum seekers,
o and a defined path to citizenship to enable our immigrant brothers and sisters to fully contribute to our society.
Be a good husbandman
All men are called by God to be husbandmen. Some are called to the priesthood and they may hear Christ saying to them:
Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. (Mt. 4:19)
Others are called to the single life and they may serve the Lord via their work and there are those who are called to the married life but all are husbandmen. What makes a good husbandman?
Let us look at St. Joseph as an example of a good husbandman.
· St. Joseph in all his dealings was humble.
· He was the provider and protector of Mary and Jesus
· full of zeal and great courage,
· Obedient to the will of God. Yet he was not rash; and with prudence pondered
· His decisions trusting in divine providence.
· He was a model of workers and
· an example of married life and chaste love.
· He valued prayer and the hidden life.
· He was ready for the call of a neighbor or to the call of God;
· He gave an immediate response.
· His was a life of sacrifice; his was a life of simplicity.
To be a good husbandman is to:
“Do the ordinary in an extraordinary way.”
Life First 9 Days for Life
9 Days for Life is a "digital pilgrimage" of prayer and action focused on cherishing the gift of every person's life. A multi-faceted novena highlighting a different intention each day provides reflections, bonus information, and suggested actions. Join to receive the novena through the 9 Days for Life app, daily emails, or daily texts. See below for information on how else you can get involved! #9DaysforLife #OurPrayersMatter
Intercession: May the tragic practice of abortion come to an end.
Prayers: Our Father, 3 Hail Marys, Glory Be
Reflection: Today, on this 46th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, we mourn the many children’s lives ended by abortion and remember in prayer those who suffer the aftermath. The Church comes together today to pray for the protection of all unborn children and to make reparation for abortion, trusting that the Lord hears our prayers. Pope Saint John Paul II wrote, “A great prayer for life is urgently needed, a prayer which will rise up throughout the world. Through special initiatives and in daily prayer, may an impassioned plea rise to God, the Creator and lover of life, from every Christian community, from every group and association, from every family and from the heart of every believer” (Evangelium vitae, 100). May that prayer arise in our hearts today and each day forward until every human being is protected in law and welcomed in life.
Acts of Reparation (Choose one.)
· Abstain from snacking today. Eat three meals only.
· Learn how to pray the Angelus (www.usccb.org/angelus), and consider saying it every day for the next week—on awakening, at noon, or at 6 p.m. (or all three times).
· Offer some other sacrifice, prayer, or act of penance that you feel called to do for today’s intention.
Complete My Joy
Types of Suffering in the Family
95. Original sin is a partial cause of particular sufferings for the family, including infertility, sickness, disability, and death. I know that families struggle in their care for ailing children, spouses, and aging grandparents. I see when parents feel deeply the suffering of a handicapped child. There are many who long for a child but cannot have one of their own. Family members grieve deeply when a child or parent is prematurely called home.
96. Another kind of suffering is felt through the collective sin of the culture of death. I realize that it is a very real and difficult struggle for parents to raise faithful, spiritually confident children in a society steeped in sins against life and authentic love: where abortion is rampant and support for euthanasia grows, where despair and the violence it breeds explode in schools and neighborhoods, where consumerism and materialism enslave, where pornography invades every formerly safe and sacred aspect of life, where increasing numbers of children are encouraged to question their sexual identity in the wake of the lie of gender ideology, and where the damaging and perverse homosexual lifestyle is not only accepted but celebrated. Families of faith, the Church desires to be your support and guide as you navigate daily life in the hostility of the post-modern climate.
97. Where the clergy and even elevated shepherds of the Church have failed you in this, I am truly sorry. In this time of upheaval in our Church, when stories of abuse and cover-up remind us of the devastation of sin even within the most sacred of institutions, know that I share your anger and pain—whether you have been directly or indirectly affected by such violations of vows and trust. This is a tremendous cross and one we carry together, with Christ.
98. Today, nearly all families live in a world of extreme busyness, where countless activities—even good and wholesome ones—sap energy and time and leave families drained and disconnected. The legitimate need to provide materially for the family is, for some of you, another source of suffering. Increasingly, mothers find themselves nearly forced to spend more time outside the home to help provide for the family. Exhaustion can lead to difficulty in being not only physically present but also emotionally available to the family. Single parents especially may find themselves stretched to the limits of their emotional, physical, and material capability. Military families struggle with prolonged absences and long stretches of anxiety and loneliness.
99. A related suffering comes from the excessive use of technology. Increasingly, preoccupation with media finds families exchanging a relational existence for a virtual one. Addiction to screens severs the bonds of intimacy and love in the inner circle of the family. Loneliness breeds loneliness. Left alone, even while home together, family members may find themselves turning more and more to shallow entertainment. Children and parents are left lonely in their own homes.
100. St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta challenges us: “Do you know the poor of your own home first? Maybe in your home there is somebody who is feeling lonely, very unwanted, very handicapped. Maybe your husband, your wife, or your child is lonely. Do you know that? Today we have no time even to look at each other, to talk to each other, to enjoy each other...And so less and less we are in touch with each other. The world is lost for want of sweetness and kindness. People are starving for love because everybody is in such a great rush.”
The Way Mortification
"Read these counsels slowly. Pause to meditate on these thoughts. They are things that I whisper in your ear-confiding them-as a friend, as a brother, as a father. And they are being heard by God. I won't tell you anything new. I will only stir your memory, so that some thought will arise and strike you; and so you will better your life and set out along ways of prayer and of Love. And in the end you will be a more worthy soul."
You are going to punish yourself voluntarily for your weakness and lack of generosity? Very good: but let it be a reasonable penance, imposed as it were, on an enemy who is at the same time your brother?
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