Sunday, August 13, 2023


Novena for Our Nation

August 15 - October 7

WE'RE GOING IN!!


“When people say the Rosary together, it is far more formidable to the devil, than one said privately. Because in this public prayer, it is an army that is attacking him. He can often overcome the prayer of an individual, but if this prayer is joined to other Christians, the devil has much more trouble in getting the best of it.” -St Louis de Montfort.


We are calling all "believing" Catholics to join in a powerful campaign of spiritual warfare, entitled, "Novena for Our Nation" (August 15 to October 7). The United States Grace Force has grown to nearly 80,000 Special Forces Prayer Warriors, and we want to get larger and stronger!!


Cardinal Burke has joined in calling us all to get in the fight ...

“There is no question that we are living in the most troubled times. Fundamental truths about human life about marriage and the family and about the conscience are being called into question by threatening the lives of individuals and of our society. But we are full of courage because we know that our Lord is with us. He’s called us to be His soldiers on the ground, working with Him for the salvation of the world
There is a 54 day Novena beginning on the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary which will be completed on October 7. Your prayer would be even more efficacious if you would also take part in that 54 day Novena."

We have witnessed a multitude of miracles (private and public) since this "80,000 strong" United States Grace Force began praying together in 2016.

 

PRAYER AND TRAINING!


This prayer campaign is also a Basic Training in Holiness. Each day, along with praying your rosary, holiness trainees will be provided with a 1-2 minute reflection on the qualities of excellence. The first 27 days, trainees will read from passages in scripture, quotes from saints and the catechism on one of the following: Theological Virtues, Cardinal Virtues, Gifts of the Holy Spirit, and the Fruits of the Holy Spirit. The second 27 days will be excerpts from the book entitled, Church Militant Field Manual: Special Forces Training for the Life in Christ.


The daily reflections for this prayer and training campaign can be found in multiple places.


1) You can sign up to receive the 54 Day Rosary prayers with daily reflection in your email. Click Here to Sign Up.


2) You can join the United State Grace Force Facebook group HERE, to receive the reflections each day.


3) You can order the "54 Day Basic Training in Holiness" book at romancatholicgear.com


I'm Going In!


ENLIST IN THE UNITED STATES GRACE FORCE

(Please recruit family and friends to enlist!)


Click on the medallion (just below) to JOIN

Novena for Our Nation!

MISSION: The United States Grace Force (USGF) is a “special operations force” specifically trained in spiritual warfare and intercessory prayer. The USGF capabilities include the large-scale use of powerful supernatural weapons (sacramentals, etc.) and prayers. While there are various special operations, the primary mission of the USGF is to implore God’s protection and blessing on our nation, especially imploring God’s protection (“Got Your Six”) for those who put their lives on the line to protect and defend our life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.


 Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost

ST. HIPPOYTUS-LEFTY DAY-Filet Mignon Day

 

2 Kings, Chapter 25, Verse 26

Then all the people, great and small, left with the army commanders and went to Egypt for fear of the Chaldeans.

 

In view of the modern world, I wonder: Are we still hiding in the fleshpots of Egypt for fear of the Chaldeans? Mary daughter of David help us!

 

Here we see the last remnants of David’s Kingdom in shambles. Now the Jews finally realize that Israel’s hope is gone. Yet, God has not totally snuffed out the line of David and through David’s line will come the Christ. Oh, that Israel would recognize Him.

 

The Fall

 

·       In the ninth year of his reign, Zedekiah rebels and Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem for two whole years.

·       The famine grows extremely severe in a short period of time.

·       Zedekiah tries to escape at night with his soldiers, but he gets captured by the Babylonians (Chaldeans) before they make it very far.

·       The Chaldeans kill Zedekiah's sons before his eyes, stab his eyes out, and take him in chains to Babylon.

·       Nebuchadnezzar's captain of the bodyguard, Nebuzaradan, comes to Jerusalem and burns down the Temple, the King's palace, and all the houses of the city.

·       The Babylonian army tears down the city walls. Nebuzaradan takes all the remaining people to Babylon—except for the very poorest, who still remain to be vinedressers and do farmwork.

 

Brunch with the King

 

·       The Chaldeans break the bronze pillars that were in the Temple and carry them to Babylon.

·       They completely loot all the remaining silver and gold from the Temple, stripping away all the treasures and bringing them to Babylon.

·       Nebuzaradan sends the two highest priests of the Temple and the three guardians of the Temple's threshold to Babylon, where Nebuchadnezzar has them put to death.

·       Shaphan's grandson, Gedaliah, becomes the new governor of Judah, which has been virtually emptied out and put in exile.

·       Gedaliah tells some of the remaining warriors of Judah to put down their weapons and live peacefully under Babylon's rule.

·       They do this for a while, but then a warrior named Ishmael leads ten men to kill Gedaliah.

·       The remaining people then run away to Egypt, afraid of what the Babylonians will do to them as punishment.

·       After thirty-seven years of exile and imprisonment, Jehoiachin is freed by King Evil-merodoch of Babylon. The king lets Jehoiachin eat at his own table in luxury and also gives him a generous, regular allowance.

·       In fact, Jehoiachin eats daily at the Babylonian table is an assertion that there is hope and after the gospel of Matthew, for instance is quick to name Jesus as “son of David”.

 

Mary is from the line of David and as Queen of Heaven desires to lead us to the promised land of Her son. We should listen to Her Fatima messages.

Fatima

 

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- While conversion and prayer are at the heart of Mary's messages at Fatima, Portugal, the miracles and unexplained phenomenon that accompanied the events 100 years ago continue to intrigue believers and nonbelievers alike. The apparitions of Mary at Fatima in 1917 were not the first supernatural events reported there. Two years before Mary appeared to the three shepherd children -- Lucia dos Santos and her cousins, Jacinta and Francisco Marto -- they saw a strange sight while praying the rosary in the field, according to the memoirs of Sister Lucia, who had become a Carmelite nun. "We had hardly begun when, there before our eyes, we saw a figure poised in the air above the trees; it looked like a statue made of snow, rendered almost transparent by the rays of the sun," she wrote, describing what they saw in 1915. The next year, Francisco and Jacinta received permission to tend their family's flocks and Lucia decided to join her cousins in a field owned by their families. It was 1916 when the mysterious figure appeared again, this time approaching close enough "to distinguish its features." "Do not be afraid! I am the Angel of Peace. Pray with me," Sister Lucia recalled the angel saying. The three told no one about the angel's visit and received no more heavenly visits until May 13, 1917. While the children tended their sheep and played, they were startled by two flashes of lightning. As they made their way down a slope, the children saw a "lady all dressed in white" standing on a small tree. It was the first of six apparitions of Mary, who gave a particular message or revelation each time:

 

·         May 13, 1917. When asked by the children who she was and where she came from, the lady said she was "from heaven" and that she would reveal her identity later. She asked the children to come back to the Cova da Iria on the 13th day of the month for the next six months, and she asked them to pray the rosary every day "in order to obtain peace for the world" and the end of World War I.

 

·         June 13, 1917. The lady said she would take Francisco and Jacinta to heaven soon while Lucia would remain on earth for "sometime longer" to establish devotion to the Immaculate Heart.

 

·         July 13, 1917. The lady said she would reveal her identity in October and "perform a miracle for all to see and believe." After telling the children to make sacrifices for sinners, she revealed three secrets; two of the secrets were not shared publicly until 1941 and the third secret, written down by Sister Lucia and sent to the Vatican, was not released until 2000.

 

The first secret involved a vision of hell in which the children saw "a sea of fire" with demons and human souls shrieking "in pain and despair." In her memoir, Sister Lucia said people nearby, who had begun gathering around the children on the 13th of the month, heard her "cry out" during the frightening revelation.

 

The second secret was that while World War I would come to end, a "worse one will break out" if people continued offending God. The children were told that calamity would be prevented if Russia was consecrated to the Immaculate Heart. Although Sister Lucia confirmed that the consecration was done properly by Pope Pius XII in 1942 and by St. John Paul II in 1984, some Fatima devotees continue to argue that it was not.

 

The third and final secret, published 83 years after the Fatima apparitions, was a vision of a "bishop dressed in white" shot down amid the rubble of a ruined city. The official Vatican interpretation, discussed with Sister Lucia before its publication, was that it referred to the persecution of Christians in the 20th century and, specifically, to the 1981 assassination attempt on the life of St. John Paul II. Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the future Pope Benedict XVI, was prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith at the time of the third secret's publication in 2000. Presenting the secret and the interpretation to the press, he said the vision's purpose was not to show an "irrevocably fixed future" but to "mobilize the forces of change in the right direction."

 

·         Aug. 19, 1917. The lady again said she would perform a miracle in October and asked that the money given by pilgrims be used to build a chapel on the site of the apparitions.

 

·         Sept. 13, 1917. The lady asked them to continue to pray the rosary "to obtain the end of the war," and she said that Jesus, St. Joseph, Our Lady of Sorrows and Our Lady of Carmel would appear during the miracle in October.

 

·         -- Oct. 13, 1917. Despite the pouring rain, tens of thousands of people went to the Cova da Iria to witness the long-awaited miracle. The lady identified herself as "Our Lady of the Rosary" and said the war would end and the soldiers would return home. After asking that people cease to offend God, she opened her hands, which reflected a light toward the sun. Sister Lucia recalled crying out, "Look at the sun!" As the crowds looked on, the sun appeared to "dance," spinning and changing colors. The children also saw the promised figures of Jesus, St. Joseph and Mary. Amazement at the "dancing sun" turned to panic when the sun seemed to hurl toward earth. Fearing the end of the world, some people screamed and ran, some tried to hide and others remained on their knees, praying for mercy. Then the sun returned to its place. Thirteen years after Mary's final apparition at Fatima, the bishop of Leiria declared the visions of the three shepherd children "worthy of belief" and allowed the veneration of Our Lady of Fatima. However, the bishop did not recognize the "dancing sun" as miraculous. 

ON KEEPING THE LORDS DAY HOLY[1]

 

CHAPTER V

 

DIES DIERUM

 

Sunday: The Primordial Feast, Revealing the Meaning of Time

CONCLUSION

85. As she strains towards her goal, the Church is sustained and enlivened by the Spirit. It is he who awakens memory and makes present for every generation of believers the event of the Resurrection. He is the inward gift uniting us to the Risen Lord and to our brothers and sisters in the intimacy of a single body, reviving our faith, filling our hearts with charity and renewing our hope. The Spirit is unfailingly present to every one of the Church's days, appearing unpredictably and lavishly with the wealth of his gifts. But it is in the Sunday gathering for the weekly celebration of Easter that the Church listens to the Spirit in a special way and reaches out with him to Christ in the ardent desire that he return in glory: "The Spirit and the Bride say, 'Come!'" (Rev 22:17). Precisely in consideration of the role of the Spirit, I have wished that this exhortation aimed at rediscovering the meaning of Sunday should appear in this year which, in the immediate preparation for the Jubilee, is dedicated to the Holy Spirit.

 

Eleventh Sunday after Pentecost[2]

 

Daily dying to our sins and rising to new life in Christ.

AT the Introit of the Mass, with the priest, pray God for brotherly love, and for protection against enemies, within and without. God, in His holy place; God, Who maketh men of one mind to dwell in a house, He shall give power and strength to His people. Let God arise, and let His enemies be scattered; and let them that hate Him flee before His face (Ps. Ixvii.).

Prayer. almighty and everlasting God, Who in the abundance of Thy mercy dost exceed the desires and deserts of Thy suppliants, pour forth Thy mercy upon us, that Thou mayest forgive what our conscience fears, and grant what our prayer does not presume to ask.

EPISTLE, i. Cor. xv. 1-10.

I make known unto you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you have received, and wherein you stand, by which also you are saved: if you hold fast after what manner I preached unto you, unless you have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all, that which I also received: how that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures: and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day, according to the Scriptures: and that He was seen by Cephas, and after that by the eleven. Then was He seen by more than five hundred brethren at once, of whom many remain until this present, and some are fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles: and last of all, He was seen also by me as by one born out of due time. For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am: and His grace in me hath not been void.

Explanation. This epistle teaches us that as the holy apostle Paul was not elated with vanity by the revelations he had received from God, but rather felt himself unworthy of them, ascribing it to God’s grace that he was what he was, even so the truly humble man thinks little of himself, is willing to be despised by others, and gives glory to God alone. Such humility is a most difficult lesson to our sensual nature. But are we not sinners, and far greater sinners, than St. Paul was? and shall we then esteem ourselves highly? And granting that we have not to reproach ourselves with any great sins, and have even done much good, is it not presumption and robbery to claim for ourselves what belongs to grace? Let us learn, therefore, to be humble, and to count ourselves always unprofitable servants.

Aspiration. O most humble Savior, banish from my heart the spirit of pride, and impart to me the most necessary grace of humility. Give me grace to know that, of myself, I can do nothing that is pleasing to Thee, that all my sufficiency for good comes from Thee, and that Thou workest in us both to will and to accomplish (n. Cor. iii. 5; Phil. ii. 13).

 

GOSPEL Mark vii 31-37


 

At that time, Jesus, going out of the coasts of Tyre, came by Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, through the midst of the coasts of Decapolis. And they bring to Him one deaf and dumb: and they besought Him that He would lay His hand upon him. And taking him from the multitude apart, He put His fingers into his ears, and spitting, He touched his tongue: and looking up to heaven, He groaned, and said to him: Ephpheta, which is, be thou opened. And immediately his ears were opened, and the string of his tongue was loosed, and he spoke right. And He charged them that they should tell no man. But the more He charged them, so much the more a great deal did they publish it: and so much the more did they wonder, saying: He hath done all things well; He hath made both the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak.

 

·       Who among Christians are like the deaf and dumb of this gospel?  Those who are deaf to the voice of God, and dumb in prayer, in the praise of God, in the defense of religion, and of the good name of their neighbor, and in confessing their sins.

 

·       Why did Christ take the deaf and dumb man aside? Because He did not seek the praise of men, and at the same time was loath to provoke too soon the hatred of His enemies.

 

·       Why did Jesus put His fingers into the ears of the deaf and dumb, and spitting, touched his tongue? To show this unfortunate person by signs that it was He Who freed him from his bodily evils, and that the healing power was not the consequence of secretly given remedies but proceeded immediately from Himself.

 

·       Why did Jesus look up to heaven and groan?

 

1. To show that He acted not as mere man, but that He had received all power from His eternal Father.

 

2. That He might thereby awaken and animate the deaf and dumb man to confidence in His power and belief in His divine mission. Learn hence to practice the beautiful virtue of compassion for others sufferings, and to acknowledge that every good gift is from above.

 

·       Why did Christ charge them that they should tell no man? That we might learn not to seek the praise of men for our good deeds. Let us learn to make known the works of God to His glory; for He is continually working before our eyes everyday so many wonders, in order that we may praise His benignity and omnipotence.

 

Aspiration: O Jesus, great physician of souls, open mine ears to attend to Thy holy will; loosen my tongue to proclaim and praise forever Thy love and goodness.

 

Christians at Rome in Post-Apostolic Times[3]

 

The Saint of today-St. Hippoytus was a priest and a person of some importance in the Church in Rome who in his book, “The Apostolic Traditions”, displays the liturgical life of the Christian at Rome in the first centuries. Of interest is the tradition of the hours.


Divine Office:

6 a.m. Prime: "All the faithful, men and women, upon rising in the morning before beginning work, should wash their hands and pray to God."

9 a.m. Terce: "When you are at home, pray at the third hour and praise God. But if you are away when this hour comes, pray in your heart to God. For at this hour Christ was nailed to the Cross."

12 p.m. Sext: "In a similar way you should pray again at the sixth hour. For at the time when Christ was nailed to the Cross, there came a great darkness. Prayer should therefore be said in imitation of Him who prayed at that hour, viz., Christ before His death."

3 p.m. None: "The ninth hour too should be made perfect by prayer and praise . . . in that hour Christ was pierced by the spear."

6 p.m. Vespers: "Once more ought you to pray before you go to bed."

Matins: "At midnight rise from your bed, wash yourself and pray. If you have a wife, pray together in antiphonal fashion. If she is not yet of the faith, withdraw and pray alone and return again to your place. If you are bound by the bond of marriage duties, do not cease your prayers, for you are not stained thereby. It is necessary that we pray at that hour (i.e., Matins), for at that hour all creation is resting and praising God. Stars, trees, water are as if they were standing still; all the hosts of angels are holding divine services together with the souls of the just. They are praising almighty God at that hour." What an inspiring passage!

Sunrise-Lauds: "In like manner rise and pray at the hour at which the cock crows . . . full of hope look forward to the day of eternal light that will shine upon us eternally after the resurrection from the dead." Motivation for these "hour prayers" of the early Christians was the conviction that daily they were reliving Christ's death and resurrection. Every new day was a day of resurrection, and daily they were raised with Christ on the Cross. It is an example that should spur us on to give the Mass, the Breviary, and the Bible the place of honor in our lives.

International Left-Handers Day[4]

 

International Left-Handers Day is a day to bring attention to the struggles which lefties face daily in a right-handed society.  August 13th is observed as International Left-Handers Day.  

 

International Left-Handers Day Facts

 

·       10% of people are left-handed according to a report by Scientific American.

·       Geniuses are more likely to be left-handed - 20% of the top scoring SAT takers are left-handed.

·       In 2013, 31% of Major League Baseball pitchers are left-handed.

·       lefties: Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, Leonardo da Vinci

 

Filet Mignon Day[5]


 

” When you’re a failure in Hollywood, that’s like starving to death outside a banquet hall, with smells of Filet Mignon driving you crazy.”
~ Marilyn Monroe

There is a cut of meat that is the very definition of luxury and decadence, one that falls from the lips of the common people and the rich debutante royalty of Hollywood in equal measure. Filet Mignon is French for “dainty fillet” and first found its way into the world in the 1906 book,” The Four Million”. Filet Minion Day celebrates the history of this steak and the delicious role it has played in exquisite meals. Tenderloin. The very word implies a rich and succulent meal that absolutely melts on the tongue, but even in this most perfect cut of meat, there is a portion that is unquestionably the best. This portion is the fabled Filet Mignon. This delicious cut is served in 4 to 8oz portions and comes prepared in one of three varieties, seared in a pan, grilled over coals or the most famous, wrapped in bacon. The bacon is typically added to enrich the piece with fat, as Filet Mignon tends to leanness. Even though it comes from the tenderloin, there are still multiple cuts of Filet Mignon one can choose to indulge in. The prime cut is the most popular and is available from any form of cattle, the Angus Cut, however, comes specifically from vegetarian fed beef and is far and away one of the best forms of beef available. If you’re truly feeling decadent, you can purchase a 32oz whole Filet Mignon Roast. It may set you back about $65 a pound (That’s $130) but it’ll be worth every succulent bite.

 

How to Celebrate Filet Mignon Day

If you don’t have a talent with cooking, you can head out to your local steakhouse and enjoy an expertly prepared cut of Filet Mignon. If you’re feeling more adventurous you can head down to your local butcher and get an excellent cut of meat that you can prepare yourself! Marinate it in a wonderful sauce while you get the coals ready, wrap it in bacon, and set it upon the grill to cook. Gently though! Filet Mignon is best-served medium rare so that the soft tender nature of the meat will be preserved. This is just the first step on enjoying Filet Mignon Day, but it doesn’t have to be the last!

Carpetbag Steak[6]


Australia’s carpetbag steak combines two of the country’s most celebrated products: fresh, sea-bright oysters and (ideally) free-range, grass-fed beef. The name of this specialty derives from the shape of the finished dish. Although many recipes call for broiling the steaks or grilling them over charcoal, those methods tend to dry out the meat and prevent its beefy juices from mingling into the oozy lushness of the salty oysters. Better to sauté the steaks for a moistly tender result with maximum flavor contrast. Carpetbag Steaks

Serves 4

Necessary equipment: Kitchen string and a trussing needle or small satay-type skewers 4 filet mignon steaks, each about 2 inches thick or 7 to 8 ounces Salt and freshly ground black pepper 8 medium-size oysters, as freshly shucked as possible 6 tablespoons (¾ stick) unsalted butter 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley 2 to 3 anchovy fillets (optional), finely mashed.

1. Using a very sharp knife with a thin blade, cut a 2-inch-long horizontal slit on the edge of each steak to make a pocket about 2 inches deep.

2. Sprinkle salt and pepper onto both sides of each oyster. Slip 2 oysters, side by side, into the pocket of each steak.

3. Close the opening of each pocket, either by sewing it shut using kitchen string and a trussing needle, or by fastening it with a small skewer. Pat the steaks dry on both sides with paper towels.

4. Heat 3 tablespoons of the butter in a large, heavy skillet, preferably cast-iron or copper, over moderate heat. When the bubbling subsides, arrange the oyster-stuffed steaks in the skillet, making sure that they do not touch one another.

5. Cook the steaks on one side until lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes, then turn them over and lightly brown them on the second side, about 3 to 4 minutes time. Reduce the heat to low and cook the steaks, turning them frequently, 7 minutes longer for very rare steak, or 9 to 10 minutes for medium-rare. Anything more cooked than that will hardly be worth eating. Transfer the steaks to individual serving plates.

6. Melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter in the skillet and stir in the parsley. Spoon some of the parsley butter over each steak before serving. If you like the edgy sophistication that anchovies can impart, stir the mashed fillets into the parsley butter before spooning it over the steaks.

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PART ONE: THE PROFESSION OF FAITH

SECTION TWO-I. THE CREEDS

CHAPTER THREE-I BELIEVE IN THE HOLY SPIRIT

Article 11-"I BELIEVE IN THE RESURRECTION OF THE BODY"

I. Christ's Resurrection and Ours

The progressive revelation of the Resurrection

992 God revealed the resurrection of the dead to his people progressively. Hope in the bodily resurrection of the dead established itself as a consequence intrinsic to faith in God as creator of the whole man, soul and body. the creator of heaven and earth is also the one who faithfully maintains his covenant with Abraham and his posterity. It was in this double perspective that faith in the resurrection came to be expressed. In their trials, the Maccabean martyrs confessed:

The King of the universe will raise us up to an everlasting renewal of life, because we have died for his laws. One cannot but choose to die at the hands of men and to cherish the hope that God gives of being raised again by him.

993 The Pharisees and many of the Lord's contemporaries hoped for the resurrection. Jesus teaches it firmly. To the Sadducees who deny it he answers, "Is not this why you are wrong, that you know neither the scriptures nor the power of God?" Faith in the resurrection rests on faith in God who "is not God of the dead, but of the living."

994 But there is more. Jesus links faith in the resurrection to his own person: "I am the Resurrection and the life." It is Jesus himself who on the last day will raise up those who have believed in him, who have eaten his body and drunk his blood. Already now in this present life he gives a sign and pledge of this by restoring some of the dead to life, announcing thereby his own Resurrection, though it was to be of another order. He speaks of this unique event as the "sign of Jonah," The sign of the temple: he announces that he will be put to death but rise thereafter on the third day.

995 To be a witness to Christ is to be a "witness to his Resurrection," to "[have eaten and drunk] with him after he rose from the dead." Encounters with the risen Christ characterize the Christian hope of resurrection. We shall rise like Christ, with him, and through him.

996 From the beginning, Christian faith in the resurrection has met with incomprehension and opposition. "On no point does the Christian faith encounter more opposition than on the resurrection of the body." It is very commonly accepted that the life of the human person continues in a spiritual fashion after death. But how can we believe that this body, so clearly mortal, could rise to everlasting life?

How do the dead rise?

997 What is "rising"? In death, the separation of the soul from the body, the human body decays and the soul goes to meet God, while awaiting its reunion with its glorified body. God, in his almighty power, will definitively grant incorruptible life to our bodies by reuniting them with our souls, through the power of Jesus' Resurrection.

998 Who will rise? All the dead will rise, "those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgment."

999 How? Christ is raised with his own body: "See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself"; but he did not return to an earthly life. So, in him, "all of them will rise again with their own bodies which they now bear," but Christ "will change our lowly body to be like his glorious body," into a "spiritual body":

But someone will ask, "How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?" You foolish man! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. and what you sow is not the body which is to be, but a bare kernel ....What is sown is perishable, what is raised is imperishable.... the dead will be raised imperishable.... For this perishable nature must put on the imperishable, and this mortal nature must put on immortality.

1000 This "how" exceeds our imagination and understanding; it is accessible only to faith. Yet our participation in the Eucharist already gives us a foretaste of Christ's transfiguration of our bodies:

Just as bread that comes from the earth, after God's blessing has been invoked upon it, is no longer ordinary bread, but Eucharist, formed of two things, the one earthly and the other heavenly: so too our bodies, which partake of the Eucharist, are no longer corruptible, but possess the hope of resurrection.

1001 When? Definitively "at the last day," "at the end of the world." Indeed, the resurrection of the dead is closely associated with Christ's Parousia:

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven, with a cry of command, with the archangel's call, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. and the dead in Christ will rise first.

Risen with Christ

1002 Christ will raise us up "on the last day"; but it is also true that, in a certain way, we have already risen with Christ. For, by virtue of the Holy Spirit, Christian life is already now on earth a participation in the death and Resurrection of Christ:

And you were buried with him in Baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead .... If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.

1003 United with Christ by Baptism, believers already truly participate in the heavenly life of the risen Christ, but this life remains "hidden with Christ in God." The Father has already "raised us up with him, and made us sit with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus." Nourished with his body in the Eucharist, we already belong to the Body of Christ. When we rise on the last day we "also will appear with him in glory."

1004 In expectation of that day, the believer's body and soul already participate in the dignity of belonging to Christ. This dignity entails the demand that he should treat with respect his own body, but also the body of every other person, especially the suffering:

The body [is meant] for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. and God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? .... You are not your own; .... So glorify God in your body.

Daily Devotions

·       Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Victims of clergy sexual abuse

·       Let Freedom Ring Day 37 Freedom from Gossip

·       Religion in the Home for Preschool: August

·       Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Rosary

 

 

Introduction to Chronicles 1

Déjà vu[7], that strange feeling we sometimes get that we've read something before. What we're reading now has already been read. In 1 Chronicles, the author decides to retell the entire history of Israel from the first week of creation all the way to the people's return from exile in Babylon in 538 BCE. After all, those really long genealogies from Numbers were so fun, who wouldn't want to hear them again? But seriously, why would anyone want to retell stories from the Bible? Those tales about the prophet Samuel and King David were pretty darn awesome the first time around. If the originals are not broken, don't fix it, right? Not quite. See, the author of Chronicles lived about 500 years after the death of King David. A whole lot of distressing stuff has happened since then. Israel had a string of terrible kings, it fractured into two separate countries, and it was nearly annihilated by the big boys from Assyria and Babylon. It was a rough half-millennium.

1 Chronicles is written as the people return to Jerusalem after spending nearly 70 years in exile in Babylon. They're struggling to put their lives back together. Whether they're reestablishing the city, rebuilding the Temple, or renewing their relationship with God, these guys have got a lot on their plates. So, what better time than now to retell a classic and inspiring story about Jerusalem's Golden Age? Think about it. Some of our favorite books and movies are just rehashes of older tales. Easy A is The Scarlet LetterTen Things I Hate About You is The Taming of the ShrewMy Fair Lady is Pygmalion. Heck, even Twilight is loosely (very loosely) based on Pride and Prejudice. By telling a story again in a new and different way, you're saying that it's valuable, important, and still has something to teach. Trust us, being timelessly wise is no easy feat. So take a trip down memory lane as we examine the phenomena of déjà vu, that strange feeling we sometimes get that we've read something before. What we're reading now has already been read. 

Why Should I Care?

We all need a hero. It's totally true. People do need heroes. We need them to give us hope, show us the way, and to fight for everything that's good in this crazy world. And no one needed a hero more than the Chronicler and his friends in Jerusalem. They had really been through some stuff. Death. Destruction. War. Exile. But now they've come back to the city they once lost and they're looking to rebuild. Late at night they toss and they turn and they dream of what they need. They need a hero. That's why the Chronicler decides to write about King David. In his eyes, this ancient king is the ultimate hero. Not only is he unbelievably handsome, he's also incredibly loyal, faithful, humble, and strong. The guy is a kick-butt warrior. A just and fair king. A devoted servant of God. He's the total package. Seriously, the Chronicler loves David so much we're guessing he drew little hearts around his name every time he wrote it. Of course, this isn't the first time King David's heroic story has been told. But their portrayal of him is a little more, um, complicated. Do you remember the time David's own son tried to usurp his throne? Or that other time when he slept with a married woman, got her pregnant, and then had her husband killed so he could marry her? Well, none of that is in 1 Chronicles. It's not that the author is trying to hide all this stuff from us (he knows his readers already have all the dirt on David and Bathsheba). But he also knows his people need a story that will uplift them and give them hope for the hard work that's ahead. No one wants to read about an angry, brooding Superman who's struggling to find his place in this world. They need a handsome, confident Christopher Reeve-style Superman who fights for truth, justice, and the Yahweh way.

We all long for strong leaders who'll protect us from our enemies, unify the country and really care about us. Every four years, a few people try to convince us that they're exactly what we're looking for and that God's on their side. We can read about King David and think, "if only…" OTOH, we realize that, as much as we'd like to worship our leaders, there's no perfect leader, that running a country is way more complicated than invading foreign countries, citing Scripture, and handing out free food. We can relate to the author of Chronicles because we're willing to overlook a lot of moral failings and personal shenanigans in a charismatic political leader who makes us feel good about our country. Could the David of 1 Chronicles get elected today? We report. You decide.



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