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Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Ascension Eve

Epistle Eph. 4, 7-14

7 But grace was given to each of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift. 8 Therefore, it says: “He ascended on high and took prisoners captive; he gave gifts to men.” What does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended into the lower [regions] of the earth? 10The one who descended is also the one who ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things. 11 And he gave some as apostles, others as prophets, others as evangelists, others as pastors and teachers, 12 to equip the holy ones for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of faith and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the extent of the full stature of Christ,
14 so that we may no longer be infants, tossed by waves and swept along by every wind of teaching arising from human trickery, from their cunning in the interests of deceitful scheming.

Gospel John 17, 1-11


1When Jesus had said this, he raised his eyes to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come. Give glory to your son, so that your son may glorify you, 2 just as you gave him authority over all people, so that he may give eternal life to all you gave him. Now this is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ. 4 I glorified you on earth by accomplishing the work that you gave me to do. 5 Now glorify me, Father, with you, with the glory that I had with you before the world began.6 “I revealed your name to those whom you gave me out of the world. They belonged to you, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7 Now they know that everything you gave me is from you, because the words you gave to me I have given to them, and they accepted them and truly understood that I came from you, and they have believed that you sent me. 9 I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for the ones you have given me, because they are yours, 10 and everything of mine is yours and everything of yours is mine, and I have been glorified in them. 11 And now I will no longer be in the world, but they are in the world, while I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are.

Christus Vincit


Reigns-Conquers-Commands



Every Wednesday is Dedicated to St. Joseph

The Italian culture has always had a close association with St. Joseph perhaps you could make Wednesdays centered around Jesus’s Papa. Plan an Italian dinner of pizza or spaghetti after attending Mass as most parishes have a Wednesday evening Mass. You could even do carry out to help restaurants. If you are adventurous, you could do the Universal Man Plan: St. Joseph style. Make the evening a family night perhaps it could be a game night. Whatever you do make the day special.

·       Devotion to the 7 Joys and Sorrows of St. Joseph

·       Do the St. Joseph Universal Man Plan.

Rogationtide Wednesday

PINOT GRIGIO DAY

 

Deuteronomy, Chapter 13, Verse 11-12

11You shall stone that person to death, for seeking to lead you astray from the LORD, your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. 12And all Israel shall hear of it and FEAR, and never again do such evil as this in your midst.

 

What is worst to kill a person’s body or to kill a person’s soul?


 

When a person leads you astray from the Lord they indeed are killing your soul. The soul is meant to be free to do the will of God and when the soul is busy doing the will of God we are indeed happy; even in abject poverty. When a soul is hampered from doing the will of God by another or your own free will this is a form of slavery and God is reminding us that He brought us out of the house of slavery. We are to stone anyone or thing that leads us away from God for it kills the soul.

 

To stone something is to bury it not in earth but in stone so that it will never rise again. What are the things that are leading you astray from God? Stone them!

 

Five Enslaving Habits We Must Avoid[1]

 

While the horror of slavery is thankfully dead as an institution, it sadly lives on in many other forms in many lives today, all around us, in ways maybe not considered slavery by some. I hope to get you to reconsider. But let’s first define our terms:

 

Slave: “One that is totally subservient to a dominating influence.” ~ Merriam-Webster-There are 5 basic areas of life in which we can become totally subservient to dominating influences, and thereby live less-than-ideal and something less than happy lives. 

5 Ways Slavery is still with us.

1.     Slavery to addictions. Whether we are talking about being enslaved to tobacco or alcohol, or whether we’re talking about enslavement to illicit material online or simply to the TV or to junk food or gossip, any addictions rob us of a measure of freedom and independence. But freedom is required for happiness. So anything that enslaves us limits the degree of joy we can have in life.

 

2.     Slavery to the office: When spouse and family and our spiritual lives are playing second fiddle to the office, things are likely out of whack. Of course, there will be times, like the first few years of starting a business, when things will be lopsided. But if the office always is master and you are always its servant, then change may be needed for the fullness of a happy life to be experienced. Remember, your family is not a footnote to your journey. They are there in the thick of things, experiencing it with you, alongside you, maybe, in some ways, because of you. So, give them the time of day, from time to time!

 

3.     Slavery to success: When success becomes more important than integrity or honor or self-respect, then our subservience to the call of the dollar sign becomes self-destructive, as all addictions are. Happiness is robbed of its internal rewards when our insides are all twisted inside out as we compromise our values in the pursuit of wealth.

 

4.     Slavery to pleasure: Is the pursuit of pleasure hurting your relationship with your spouse? Are you pursuing pleasure at the expense of your spouse’s pleasure? Is that pursuit violating sacred vows and trusts? Are you spending your family into debt as you chase pleasure from one mountain top to another – or one casino to another – or one vacation to another – or one, well, you get the idea.

 

5.     Slavery to fear: Does fear and worry prevent you from taking steps to break free of a dissatisfying life? Do you wish for something more, but keep the door closed and locked and continue to do what you’ve always done? Are you trapped in a cycle of sameness, worried that if you tried to start a business, or tried to learn a skill, or tried an adventure on for size, or tried to learn to write or sing or climb, that you would fail and fall and sink and drown? 

Afterthoughts

Slavery may be dead as a formal institution of human bondage, but it is alive and well in the hearts and minds and lives of too many people who could loosen the shackles, but haven’t exercised the courage to do it yet. 

Preparing for Battle[2] Know Your Weapons

 

Worship is a spiritual weapon. When we worship God, we enter into His presence in a powerful way. Because demons tremble at His presence, they are reluctant to follow us there.

·       Frequent Mass attendance, then, is an effective weapon of our warfare.

Rogationtide Wednesday[3]

Today would be a good day to reflect on what we want to harvest this fall; so, like farmers we must till the soil of our soul reflecting this day on our use of our TREASURE (yes money/tithe) and look at in what ways we may offer our money to Christ to help build a harvest for His Kingdom. It has been said that money is the root of all evil. Yet, this is not exactly true for the real root of all evil is not money but the LOVE of money. Those who fear the Lord know that money is a gift from God. It is not to be buried but sown. This is the correction that God wishes us to accept. We are all sowers, and we are to spread the seeds or gifts that God gives us out. Does God need a tithe from us? Or Does God need our hearts free from the love of money? Do not make my house a marketplace. For love of money or the lust for money is what corrupts men not the money itself. 

Donate a Day Wages to a Charity Day[4]

We all have causes that we care about, problems we want to see erased from society, and issues that have affected us deeply throughout our lives. However, most people are busy and haven’t had the time or opportunity to dedicate as much as they would want to charities and causes of their choice. Donate A Day’s Wages To Charity Day is there to change that. Whether you have trouble keeping up with charitable donations and you want to make a difference or you believe that you should make a pledge that matters once a year, it’s the day to do it.

Your Money or Your Life[5] 

At this tense moment in our history, when external wars and internal violence make us so conscious of death, an affirmation of the sanctity of human life by renewed attention to the family is imperative. Let society always be on the side of life. Let it never dictate, directly or indirectly, recourse to the prevention of life or to its destruction in any of its phases; neither let it require as a condition of economic assistance that any family yield conscientious determination of the number of its children to the decision of persons or agencies outside the family. Stepped-up pressures for moral and legal acceptance of directly procured abortion make necessary pointed reference to this threat to the right to life. Reverence for life demands freedom from direct interruption of life once it is conceived. Conception initiates a process whose purpose is the realization of human personality. A human person, nothing more and nothing less, is always at issue once conception has taken place. We expressly repudiate any contradictory suggestion as contrary to Judeo-Christian traditions inspired by love for life, and Anglo-Saxon legal traditions protective of life and the person. Abortion brings to an end with irreversible finality both the existence and the destiny of the developing human person. 

·       Conscious of the inviolability of life, the Second Vatican Council teaches: God, the Lord of life, has conferred on man the surpassing ministry of safeguarding life, a ministry which must be fulfilled in a manner that is worthy of man. Therefore, from the moment of its conception life must be guarded with the greatest care while abortion and infanticide are unspeakable crimes (Gaudium et Spes, 51).

·       The judgment of the Church on the evil of terminating life derives from the Christian awareness that men are not the masters but the ministers of life. Hence, the Council declares: Whatever is opposed to life itself, such as any type of murder, genocide, abortion, euthanasia, or willful self-destruction, whatever violates the integrity of the human person...all these things and others of their like are infamies indeed. They poison human society, but they do more harm to those who practice them than those who suffer from the injury. Moreover, they are a supreme dishonor to the Creator" (Gaudium et Spes, 27) 

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. 

Are these words just words highlighted by men during the age of enlightenment or are they the inspired will of the creator? America is special in that the founders realized this when they wrote our constitution which was established to ensure that laws are enacted and enforced that support life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Much of our misery in this country is caused by laws that reverse the order ensuring that wealth trumps liberty and liberty trumps life. No, it must be life first.

The transmission of human life is a most serious role in which married people collaborate freely and responsibly with God the Creator. It has always been a source of great joy to them, even though it sometimes entails many difficulties and hardships.

The fulfillment of this duty has always posed problems to the conscience of married people, but the recent course of human society and the concomitant changes have provoked new questions. The Church cannot ignore these questions, for they concern matters intimately connected with the life and happiness of human beings.

The protection of Life has primacy.

·       If we are the children of the creator, we know that life must be protected at conception to its natural end.

·       We must seek the dignity of the unborn, the living and the aged in our laws and traditions.

Are you into composting?[6]

When Americans die, most are buried or cremated. Washington could soon become the first state to allow another option: human composting. The novel approach, known as “recomposition,” involves placing bodies in a vessel and hastening their decomposition into a nutrient-dense soil that can then be returned to families. The aim is a less expensive way of dealing with human remains that is better for the environment than burial, which can leach chemicals into the ground, or cremation, which releases earth-warming carbon dioxide.

“People from all over the state who wrote to me are very excited about the prospect of becoming a tree or having a different alternative for themselves,” said state Sen. Jamie Pedersen, a Democrat, who is sponsoring a bill in Washington’s Legislature to expand the options for disposing of human remains. The recomposition bill would also make Washington the 17th state to allow alkaline hydrolysis, the dissolving of bodies in a pressurized vessel with water and lye until just liquid and bone remains. Pedersen plans to introduce the bill when the new legislative session begins next month.

Well, I guess we wouldn’t have to depend on Russia for fertilizer

This is scary, sounds like the movie “Soylent Green” was prophetic. Maybe if you are over fifty you need to stay healthy as possible for as long as you can.

Pinot Grigio Day[7] 


The Pinot Grigio complements any meal but sometimes it’s best by itself. Lorrie C

 

If you’re a wine aficionado, you know that there’s nothing quite like the fresh taste of a great vintage of wine to go with an incredible meal. There are so many vintages to choose from it can sometimes be a challenge to find the perfect pairing. Thankfully, there’s Pinot Grigio, an incredible wine that’s been known for hundreds of years in the world’s most respected wine regions. Pinot Grigio Pinot Grigio Day celebrates this astonishing wine and its ability to be paired with just about anything, or just enjoyed on its own. 

History of Pinot Grigio Day

 

Pinot Grigio has a long history, as we already mentioned above, and shares part of its genetic heritage with Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris. As the years went by it came to be one of the most popular vintages to be grown and produced, with over 15,000 Hectares being used to grow the grape necessary to produce it. If you’ve never had this fine wine and want to know how it tastes, it has been described as having an acidic, lighter-bodied flavor, most of the noted as having a recognizable ‘spiciness’ to them.

 

Depending on where you’re getting your Pinot Grigio from it may come under a different name, with examples being the Auxerrois Gris from Alsace, the Grauer Monch from Germany, and the Rulander from Romania. While the basic profile of the wine remains the same, there are variations based on where and how its produced that lead to sweeter and drier varieties being available. Pinot Grigio Day is your opportunity to go out and buy a bottle or ten and start sampling a delicious variety of what the world has to offer in the way of excellent wines.

 

How to celebrate Pinot Grigio Day

 

As we already mentioned there’s no better way to celebrate this day than by getting yourself a fine bottle of Pinot Grigio and pouring it out with some friends. Given that there are multiple varieties of this wine it could be good to schedule a wine tasting where everyone brings a bottle of Pinot Grigio from a different region, to ensure that everyone gets the chance to enjoy the wide world of Pinot Grigio. Don’t let this holiday pass you by without taking the time to appreciate one of viticultures finest products.

 

Things you can do with Pinot Grigio besides drinking it!

 

Of course, having a delicious glass of Pinot Grigio is the best way to celebrate this day! However, there are a number of other things that you can do with Pinot Grigio, aside from drinking it. There are so many different recipes that call for Pinot Grigio. So, why not celebrate with a delicious meal incorporating Pinot Grigio and a glass of the wine to wash it down with? Fish dishes always work really well with this type of wine. Nevertheless, there are many other recipes whereby Pinot Grigio can be incorporated. 

 

Did you know that you can use Pinot Grigio in a pie and tart crust? You have probably heard about creating a tender pie crust with vodka. However, you can also use this delicious white wine. The science is very similar. Unlike water, gluten is not created when flour and alcohol or mixed together. If you overwork gluten, baked goods can end up tough. Therefore, you can enjoy a much more tender crust if you use less gluten. Moreover, the touch of Pinot Grigio is going to add a bit of sweetness to the crust as well, so it’s a win-win! 

 

If you’re looking for a great dinner idea to go with your bottle of white wine on Pinot Grigio day, how about a chicken cacciatore? In some countries, the tomato-based version of this dish is more well-known. However, with this version, chicken is served with a white sauce. You can prepare this with red chillis, oil, and garlic. You can then add some olives and a bottle of pinot grigio, cooking it for a long time so that all of the flavors are melded together properly. Ten minutes before you are finished cooking, add plenty of fresh rosemary to the sauce. 

 

If this doesn’t sound like the right dish for you, how about a pasta carbonara? You can add more flavor to your pasta dish by adding a splash of Pinot Grigio to the pan after the pancetta has been sauteed. You won’t look back after trying this version. There is a gamey aftertaste to the smoked pancetta cubes. However, you can get rid of this with the Pinot Grigio, which makes the pure pancetta flavor outstanding. It really takes your dish to the next level, and this is a sort of concept that can be applied to a lot of different dishes when it comes to adding Pinot Grigio. 

 

Last but not least, why not create your own cocktail with Pinot Grigio? Of course, you’re still going to be technically drinking it, but we’ve bent the rules a little bit for this one! There are some amazing Pinot Grigio cocktails on the Internet. Spend some time looking for a recipe you love. One of our favorites is a Hugo Spritzer. To make this cocktail, you will need your favorite Pinot Grigio (or any old bottle!) combined with soda water, elderflower syrup, mint leaves, some wedges of lime, and some ice. It’s a refreshing cocktail, which goes down a treat.

 

Armed Forces Day Build 

US Navy[8]


John Barry, an Irish Catholic, was the "Father of the American Navy." He has been forgotten by all but a few historians, but he outranks John Paul Jones and was the official father of the Continental and U.S. Naval forces. He went to sea at a young age in Ireland and settled in Philadelphia. In October 1775, John was given command of the Continental Congress vessel, the Leviathan, and his commission, the first issued, was dated Dec. 7, 1775. When the war began, John Barry served in a spectacular manner. If his ship was shot out from under him, he and his crew battled on land. They were with George Washington at Trenton and Princeton. At the end of the war, Congress enacted on March 27, 1794, a law establishing the U.S. Navy. The U. S. Senate issued the appointments of officers made by George Washington, and John Barry's commission reads: "Captain of the U.S. Navy...to take rank from the 4th day of June, 1784...registered No. 1." With victory in hand at the end of the Revolutionary War, Americans in cities, towns and villages chanted a new ditty:

'Irish Commodore'

"There are gallant hearts whose glory

Columbia loves to name,

Whose deeds shall live in story

And everlasting fame.

But never yet one braver

Our starry baner bore,

Then saucy old Jack Barry,

The Irish Commodore."



Please pray for the intentions of my dear friend from my South Pole adventure and the Godfather of my daughter Claire, the eminent Navy Chief James Grace. 

Nineveh 90[9] 

Whether it’s a Navy SEAL or a Saint, we admire those who put it all on the line — go “all in!” — Those who are totally dedicated to the mission … and God admires them too. Throughout salvation history, we have seen how God responds to this resolute and determined kind of prayer, just as Jesus taught His disciples. It was in Nineveh that the entire city turned back to God and did all that they could, through prayer and penance, to “demonstrate to” God that they were absolutely resolute in this “turning.” God saw how “serious” they were about this, and He was moved (Jonah 3:3-10). This is yet another story that demonstrates how God – a perfect Father – compels His children to be truly resolute and quite serious when calling out to Him. 

St. Bernard of Clairvaux wrote,

 

“Timid prayer does not pierce heaven, because immoderate fear binds the soul so that prayer, far from flying upward, cannot even come out. Being lukewarm, it grows weak in its flight and falls because it has no strength. Prayer that is faithful, humble, and fervent will undoubtedly pierce heaven and it will certainly not return fruitless.” 

The time is now for us to marshal everything we’ve got to see this through.  Prayer Warriors (those who join) will be challenged to enter into a period of prayer and mortification. “Mortification,” at its essence, means to “die to yourself.” This will be our time to let go of bad and sinful habits and to embrace better and healthier and Godly habits. 

The research in the behavioral sciences says that 90 days is about the time needed to change bad habits. We will also be using some of the tried and true very powerful supernatural elements. Namely, the Brown Scapular, 54 Day Rosary Novena, and the 33 Day Preparation for Marian Consecration. 

We believe supernatural strength increases to the degree we are detached from worldliness. “He must increase, but I must decrease” was the call of St. John the Baptist. This is our time to “make straight a path for the Lord.” To put aside everything that stands in the way of Christ to fill us up completely with His Divine Life. THIS is the way we become “strong in the Lord and in His mighty power!” God will surely hear and answer this throng of tens of thousands detached from the world and resolute in our plea to end the culture of death. I am certain of it! 

Nineveh 90 – Ten Elements 

For these 90 days, resolve to let go of repetitive sin you struggle with (e.g., acts of impurity, over-eating, alcohol, etc.)

 

1.      Wear Brown Scapular (Scapular Medal allowed) – Akin to Sackcloth

2.      Daily Mass (If you are able)

3.      Confession (at least once a month … immediately following grave sin)

4.    Support System: Create or join a “Nineveh 90 Squad” of 3+ people. Maybe create a Facebook group. Also, try to join together with an “Accountability Buddy.”

5.      Daily Prayer (Developing a quality Catholic Prayer Life)

6.      Morning Offering

7.      Angelus (6, Noon,6)

8.      Rosary

9.      Holy Hour (or at least 20 minutes of quiet prayerful reflection time. Does not need to be before the Blessed Sacrament. This is normally done at home or your favorite prayer space … maybe create a “God Cave” in your home)

10.  Bedtime Prayers 

For 90 Days, Commit to …

·         Regular and challenging exercise

·         Seven hours of sleep is essential

·         No alcohol

·         No desserts & sweets

·         No eating between meals

·         No soda or sweetened drinks

·         Limit television or movies (news allowed)

·         Only music that lifts the soul to God

·         Limit televised sports (maybe one per week)

·         Limit recreational computer time (only use for personal needs and fulfillment. May be needed for Nineveh 90 too)


·         54 Day Rosary Novena (Basic Training in Holiness)

o   Prayer Intentions for 54 Day Rosary Novena: 

§  End to abortion

§  Personal holiness

§  For the conversion of loved ones.


·         33 Day Preparation for Consecration to Mary 

Sundays and Solemnities: May be a day of relaxed discipline, but not abandoned. (Sleep in an extra hour, cream in your coffee, a dessert, a beer, etc.)

Apostolic Exhortation[10]

Veneremur Cernui – Down in Adoration Falling

of The Most Reverend Thomas J. Olmsted, Bishop of Phoenix,
to Priests, Deacons, Religious and the Lay Faithful of the Diocese of Phoenix on the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist

My beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Part I

Eucharist – Mystery to Be Revered

13. The Eucharist is the supernatural food that keeps us going along the difficult journey towards the Promised Land of eternal salvation: “Whoever eats my flesh has eternal life”. To see the truth of these words, we must turn to the context for which they were spoken.

I. The Mass as the new Exodus from Slavery of Sin

14. The Eucharist comes to us through the Mass. Our normal experience of the Eucharist is at Mass, the central ritual – or liturgical – celebration which takes place every day and is a weekly obligation for the faithful. What we often call the Sacrifice of the Mass is the place where the Church has always believed we eat and drink the Body and Blood of Christ. The Mass must be understood within the context of the Last Supper where “Jesus took bread […] and gave it to his disciples, saying, ‘Take and eat; this is my body’ […] Then he took a cup, […] he gave it to them, saying, ‘Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant’” (Mt 26:26-28).

15. At the Last Supper, which the Church commemorates today, Jesus took part in and forever transformed the Jewish Passover ritual meal. It is here we see the context in which Jesus desires His Body and Blood to be consumed as food. This is the context where we discover the beauty of the grand mystery of the Eucharist as the fulfillment of both the Jewish Passover and the Covenant of Israel.

. To be continued…

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PROLOGUE


VI. Necessary Adaptations

23 The Catechism emphasizes the exposition of doctrine. It seeks to help deepen understanding of faith. In this way it is oriented towards the maturing of that faith, its putting down roots in personal life, and its shining forth in personal conduct.

24 By design, this Catechism does not set out to provide the adaptation of doctrinal presentations and catechetical methods required by the differences of culture, age, spiritual maturity, and social and ecclesial condition among all those to whom it is addressed. Such indispensable adaptations are the responsibility of particular catechisms and, even more, of those who instruct the faithful:

Whoever teaches must become "all things to all men" (I Cor 9:22), to win everyone to Christ. . . Above all, teachers must not imagine that a single kind of soul has been entrusted to them, and that consequently it is lawful to teach and form equally all the faithful in true piety with one and the same method! Let them realize that some are in Christ as newborn babes, others as adolescents, and still others as adults in full command of their powers.... Those who are called to the ministry of preaching must suit their words to the maturity and understanding of their hearers, as they hand on the teaching of the mysteries of faith and the rules of moral conduct.

Above all - Charity

25 To conclude this Prologue, it is fitting to recall this pastoral principle stated by the Roman Catechism:

The whole concern of doctrine and its teaching must be directed to the love that never ends. Whether something is proposed for belief, for hope or for action, the love of our Lord must always be made accessible, so that anyone can see that all the works of perfect Christian virtue spring from love and have no other objective than to arrive at love.

Daily Devotions

·       Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Individuals with Mental Illness note: We pray for Politian’s separately

·       Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Pray for our nation.

·       Rosary




[1]http://meanttobehappy.com/quote-13-from-the-great-emancipator-slave-part-1/

[2]Thigpen, Paul. Manual for Spiritual Warfare. TAN Books.

[4]https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/donate-a-days-wages-to-charity-day/

[6]https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/washington-could-become-first-state-legalize-human-composting-n952421

[7] https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/pinot-grigio-day/

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