Sunday, December 30, 2012

Need Prayers?


Many of you may know, that one of my blogs is "Prayer Requests". People requesting prayers for themselves, family, or friends may send an email to: faithofthefathers@gmail.com. I will post the prayer requests there, and people from around the country and around the world can pray for your special intentions.

Be sure to include Prayer Request as the email subject.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Pope Benedict XVI'S Prayer Intentions For January 2013



Vatican City, 28 December 2012 (VIS) - Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for January 2013 is: "That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him".

His mission intention is: "That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance".


You can find more information at: www.visnews.org
The news items contained in the Vatican Information Service may be used, in part or in their entirety, by quoting the source:
V.I.S. -Vatican Information Service.
Copyright © Vatican Information Service 00120 Vatican City


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Washington State Activists Push Bill Again to Force Tax-Funded Abortions | LifeNews.com

The following excerpts are from LifeNews.com:
  • The abortion insurance mandate is a bill forcing insurance on citizens to cover abortions. It comes to us compliments of the abortion industry. Anyone buying a maternity insurance plan would be forced to buy additional coverage that would cover an abortion of the pregnancy. No exceptions. Every business would have to buy it for their employees. No exceptions. So much for the abortion industry actually being pro-choice.
  • This bill is arguably the top state legislative priority for our nation’s abortion industry and their aggressive push for abortion on demand. You may remember this bill during Washington State’s past 2012 legislative session, as House Bill 2330 and Senate Bill 6185. Washington was chosen to be the first state to run this unconstitutional bill, the test state, the state on the “cutting edge” of abortion on demand in the U.S.
  • No wonder. Washington State is ranked 50th in the country by Americans United for Life. That means it’s the most anti-life or pro-death state in America. It’s not just pro-abortion but favors ending life at all stages. The worst in America!!! This is a ranking that should motivate every citizen with a well formed conscience into action, at least to some degree, to do something.
Read more by clicking below:
Washington State Activists Push Bill Again to Force Tax-Funded Abortions | LifeNews.com

Monday, December 24, 2012

A Merry and Blessed Christmas To All!

"The Angel and the Shepherds" -- by James Tissot
Click the picture for the full resolution.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Changes In Faith of the Fathers Blogs Effective January 1, 2013



Effective January 1, 2013, Faith of the Fathers blogs will reduce the number of "active" blogs, from 24 to 10.

Beginning January 1, the 14 that will no longer be posted to, will be listed as "Older Faith of the Fathers Blogs" as a link list at the very bottom of each blogs left hand sidebar. Those blogs will not be deleted, they will just no longer have any new posts added to them.

A decision to delete them entirely may come at a later date, as the 14 have very little to no traffic at all.

The 10 blogs that will remain active are as follows: 

Faith of the Fathers, Saint Quote of the Day, Daily Mass Readings, Approved Apparitions, Saints of the Faith, Pope Benedict XVI, Favorite Prayers And Scripture , Prayer Requests, The Early Church Fathers, and Apologetics.

These 10 are the blogs that have the most traffic and subscriptions, with the exception of the Prayer Requests blog. I will not remove it, as it is a blog I feel that is, and has been very helpful to many people.

In any case, thank you all for reading, following, and subscribing to these blogs.


Monday, December 17, 2012

From The Diocese of Charlotte: Rorate Mass in Latin held Dec. 15

Catholics attended what is thought to be the first Rorate Mass celebrated in the Diocese of Charlotte since the Second Vatican Council. The pre-dawn traditional Latin Mass, an ancient custom during Advent in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary, was held "in media nocte" ("in the middle of the night") and was illuminated only by candlelight.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Don't Let Time Slip Away



Today's tragic events in Connecticut have me thinking about things, as I am sure it has most of us.

I feel so much sorrow for the one's who died today, especially the children. No matter how I try to express my sorrow, it just seems so empty...too much like a cliche.

I suppose that is because we all know, that no matter what we might say, it won't change what happened. So the words I write, the things I think, seem so empty and shallow, that nothing I can say or write can make a difference whenever something awful like this happens.

To those of us who mourn the deaths of all the victims there is just nothing that we can say that will take the hurt away, that can ease the pain. All we can do is say "I'm sorry" and trust in God.

I heard someone on the radio tonight, ask "where was God when all this happened?" And they also asked, "why does God allow these things to happen if He is really there, and really cares?"

My reply to the first question is, God was, and is in the very same place He was, when His own Son died on the cross.

My reply to the second question is, that the old devil is behind this crime. And one of the reasons he caused this crime to take place, is so that you would begin to doubt God.

Let's not doubt God, but let's turn to Him. Now is when we all should turn to Him, and trust in Him. In the end, He will see us....and all the families and friends of the victims... through it all.

Another thing or two before I'm finished here. Hug your children tight, and tell them you love them. I don't care if your child is 5 or 55. Tell them.

Also, make sure that there are no bitter chasms between you and a loved one or friend. Call them. Tell them you love them. Tell them you miss them. Tell them you want to forget the past, and start anew.

Husbands and wives, don't allow petty arguments that seem so huge in your lives, to create a gulf between you. Don't go to bed angry. Don't let one or the other leave the house with one or both of you angry.

None of us are promised tomorrow. We don't know what tomorrow will bring, or even what the next hour will bring. Don't let it bring you any regret for having not made amends, or not having said some tender loving words. Take the time to say, "I love you". Take the time to say "I'm sorry". Take the time to say, "I forgive you". Take the time to ask for forgiveness.

Because just like the parents in Connecticut had no idea this morning that they would be seeing their child alive for the last time... we have no idea that someone in our lives... someone important in our lives...may be walking out the door... hanging up the phone...or going to sleep next to us...or in the same house with us... for the last time.

Don't let the moment escape you. Do it now!





Prayers For The Children In Connecticut


To You, O Lord, we humbly entrust these children, so precious in Your sight. Take them into Your arms and welcome them into paradise, where there will be no sorrow, no weeping nor pain, but the fullness of peace and joy with Your Son and the Holy Spirit forever and ever. Amen.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.



Thursday, December 13, 2012

Easy Gift Buying...Gift Cards!

Everyone knows someone (or several someone's), whom you just can't seem to find the right gift for. Whether it's the boss, junior's teacher, or a friend or relative, there are some people who are difficult to buy for, or you are not sure what to get them.

The best and easiest way to handle this dilemma, is to simply buy a gift card or gift certificate. They can be purchased in amounts from $15 or more. That way, the person receiving the gift card can then redeem it for whatever he or she wants. Problem solved, and everybody is happy.

Mystic Monk Coffee has Gift Cards available in amounts from $15 to $100. The recipient can choose some outstanding coffees and teas, as well as books, saint medals, and more from the Carmelite Monks of Wyoming, and you can help the monks in raising the money they need to build their monastery.


THE POPE'S FIRST THREE ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS ON TWITTER



Vatican City, 13 December 2012 (VIS) - @Pontifex, Pope Benedict XVI's Twitter account, attracted over a million and a half followers on its first day of existence. The Pope, after his first tweet at the end of the usual Wednesday general audience, responded during the course of the day to three questions posed by members of the public from three different continents. The first was: "How can we celebrate the Year of Faith better in our daily lives?". The Holy Father's answer was "By speaking with Jesus in prayer, listening to what he tells you in the Gospel and looking for him in those in need".

Shortly afterwards a second question was added: "How can faith in Jesus be lived in a world without hope?". "We can be certain that a believer is never alone. God is the solid rock upon which we build our lives and his love is always faithful", responded Benedict XVI.

The final tweet, posted around 6 p.m., was: "Offer everything you do to the Lord, ask his help in all the circumstances of daily life and remember that he is always beside you", in response to: "Any suggestions on how to be more prayerful when we are so busy with the demands of work, families and the world?"


You can find more information at: www.visnews.org
The news items contained in the Vatican Information Service may be used, in part or in their entirety, by quoting the source:
V.I.S. -Vatican Information Service.
Copyright © Vatican Information Service 00120 Vatican City



Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Vatican astronomer rejects Mayan prophecy of world's end : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

The following excerpts are from CatholicCulture's Catholic World News:
  • An ancient Mayan prediction that the world will end on December 21 is “not even worth discussing,” according to the head of the Vatican Observatory.
  • Father José Funes wrote in L’Osservatore Romano that the steady expansion of the universe might eventually lead to an explosive cosmological event, but that possibility is many millions of years in the future. More importantly, he added, for Christians “death can never have the last word.”
Read more by clicking below:
Vatican astronomer rejects Mayan prophecy of world's end : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

Catholic News Herald - NC bishops deeply saddened at ruling about 'Choose Life' plates - Catholic news from the Diocese of Charlotte


The following excerpts are from Catholic News Herald:
  • Federal District Court Judge James C. Fox has ruled that North Carolina cannot issue "Choose Life" license plates without offering a choice of plates with a different viewpoint.
  • Fox ruled Friday that the state's attempt to offer "Choose Life" plates only is unconstitutional because it is "viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment.
  • The ruling comes after the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit on behalf of four "pro-choice automobile owners" who contended the "Choose Life" plates were state-sponsored discrimination.
  • The Most Reverend Peter J. Jugis, Bishop of Charlotte, and the Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of Raleigh, reacted to the Dec. 7 ruling that prohibits the sale of the"Choose Life" specialty license plate in North Carolina ...
Read more by clicking below:
Catholic News Herald - NC bishops deeply saddened at ruling about 'Choose Life' plates - Catholic news from the Diocese of Charlotte

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Wisconsin bishop bars retreats by 2 women religious, cites 'New Age' influence : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

The following excerpts are from Catholic Culture's Catholic World News:
  • Bishop Robert Morlino of Madison, Wisconsin, has banned retreats and workshops led by two women religious, saying that they “may not share an authentic view of the Catholic Church’s approach to inter-religious dialogue.”
Read more by clicking below:
Wisconsin bishop bars retreats by 2 women religious, cites 'New Age' influence : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

New Single-Serve Monk-Shots From Mystic Monk Coffee



Good news from Mystic Monk Coffee for those of you who use single serve brewers. Mystic Monk Coffee now offers Monk-Shots single serve coffee cups!

The monks web site says:
  • Our Monk-Shots are compatible with all major single serve brewers including Keurig ®, Breville ®, Mr. Coffee ® and Cuisinart ®, single-serve machines. Each pod contains up to 20% more coffee than most major pod brands, making for a richer, fuller cup.  Unlike other single-serve options, our Monk-Shots are made with recyclable materials.

The Monk-Shots are available in the two best selling regular blends, Breakfast Blend and Mystic Monk Blend.

When you order one, you get 14x Single Serve Monk-Shots.

There's not much time before Christmas, so if you need your order to arrive before Christmas, now is the time to place it.

Remember, your purchase of Mystic Monk Coffee helps support the monastery of the Carmelite Monks of Wyoming and this blog!





Monday, December 10, 2012

Merry Xmas

A Brief Explanation of the Original Meaning of Xmas



Merry Xmas to you and yours.

Yes, you read that right. Merry Xmas to you and yours.

“What is with this guy” you're wondering. “Does he realize what he is doing? Here he has a bunch of Catholic blogs and is saying 'Xmas'! Doesn't he realize what he is saying?”

Yes, I sure do!

A lot of people...most people in fact... tend to get very upset when they see the term "Xmas".

"Xmas? How dare they take Christ out of Christmas, and call it Xmas. After all, Christmas is derived from Christ's Mass, and calling it Xmas is just a blatant attempt to demean what Christmas means. They already want to say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”...and now they want to make their attack complete by writing “Merry Xmas”? Well, I for one am not standing idly by while these secular humanists and their anti-Christian cohorts...."

Whoa there....slow down and take a couple of deep breaths. While you're taking your deep breaths I'll give you a little information so you can get your drawers (that means underwear to you people not from the country) out of a wad....so to speak.

The term Xmas is virtually as old as Christianity itself, and actually comes from classical Greek. The Roman letter “X” in our alphabet is similar to the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of the Greek word Χριστός, “Christos”, which translates as "Christ". The "mas" part is from the Latin-derived Old English word for "Mass". So, the word “Christmas” is actually derived from the Old English “Cristes mæsse”, literally meaning Mass of Christ.

“Xmas” (sometimes pronounced éksməss) is, and was a very common abbreviation of the word “Christmas”. So there is a very common misconception that the word “Xmas” is a secular attempt to remove the religious tradition of Christmas by taking Christ out of Christmas. This is just not the case for the term historically speaking.

According to the “Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of English Usage” the early use of Xmas dates back to 1551. Further, it (Merriam-Webster) states that X, Xp, and Xt, all derived from the Greek name, have all been used to stand for Christ- in other words besides Xmas. "Xpen" (1485), "Xpian" (1598), and "Xtian" (1845, 1915, 1940), all meaning "Christian", "Xstened" (1685-86) "christened" and "Xtianity" (1634, 1811, 1966) "Christianity".


Also, you can find the “X” being used in the ancient Christian fish symbol, or “Icthys”, as “ΙΧΘΥΣ”, which is an acronym for “Jesus Christ, God's Son, Savior”.  


The labarum, more often called the Chi-Rho, was rendered by taking the first 2 Greek letters of the name Christ (Χριστός), the "X" (Chi) the "P" (Rho), and is a symbol used in Catholic, Orthodox, and many Protestant Christian churches as a symbol for Christ. 

In a good deal of ancient Christian art, “x” and “xp” are used as abbreviations for Christ's name, as well as in many icons and ancient manuscripts of the New Testament.

The use of the term “Xmas” in place of Christmas was also used in letters from Lord Byron (1811), Lewis Carroll (1864) and Oliver Wendell Holmes (1923), in which Merriam-Webster's opines was indicative of “well-educated Englishmen who knew their Greek”.

So, I hope this helps.

I am not going to try to tell you that “Xmas” is not used by those who are trying to offend, as I am sure in some cases that it is intended so. Just remember the next time you see “Xmas”, they are still saying Christmas...and still honoring the name of Christ, even though they may not realize it.

Now, you do know it.

So, Merry Xmas to you and yours!




Judge rules ‘Choose Life’ license plates violate the First Amendment | LifeSiteNews.com



The following excerpts are from LifeSiteNews.com:
  • North Carolina women are free to choose abortion, but not pro-life license plates. A federal judge has ruled the state can only sell a “Choose Life” vanity plate if it also offers a pro-abortion alternative.
  • U.S. District Judge James C. Fox stated that offering only one side of the argument “constitutes viewpoint discrimination in violation of the First Amendment.”
  • The state legislature passed a bill authorizing the pro-life message with dozens of other specialty plate options in September 2011. The ACLU of North Carolina won an injunction against the plates that December. 
  • “We would have made the exact same argument if the situation was reversed,” ACLU-NCLF Legal Director Chris Brook told local media after Friday’s ruling. 

Read more by clicking below:

Judge rules ‘Choose Life’ license plates violate the First Amendment | LifeSiteNews.com

Saturday, December 08, 2012

US bishops announce prayer campaign for religious liberty, life, and marriage; encourage fast, abstinence on all Fridays : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

The following excerpts are from Catholic Culture's Catholic World News:
  • The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has announced a campaign of prayer and fasting for the “rebuilding of a culture favorable to life and marriage and for increased protections of religious liberty.”
  • The campaign, which will begin the Sunday after Christmas, “is essentially a call and encouragement to prayer and sacrifice – it’s meant to be simple," said Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, chairman of the USCCB Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage. “It’s not meant to be another program but rather part of a movement for life, marriage, and religious liberty, which engages the New Evangelization and can be incorporated into the Year of Faith.”
Read more by clicking below:

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Catholics urged to take part in National Night of Prayer for Life | LifeSiteNews.com


The following excerpts are from LifeSiteNews.com:
  • Catholics across the country will be united in prayer Dec. 8-9 during the 23rd annual National Night of Prayer of Life.
  • Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, is urging all parish priests and pro-life leaders to join in this vital effort.
  • “Prayer is the cornerstone of the pro-life movement,” Father Pavone said. “And parishes should be the hub of activity. Combine the two and you have a great formula for victory.”
  • The National Night of Prayer for Life is a prayer service that takes place from 9 p.m. Dec. 8 until 1 a.m. Dec. 9, and consists of adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, the Rosary, prayer to St. Michael, silent prayer and hymns.
Read more by clicking below:
Catholics urged to take part in National Night of Prayer for Life | LifeSiteNews.com


Religious freedom is top priority for Church leaders in Middle East : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

The following excerpts are from Catholic Culture's Catholic World News:
  • Religious freedom is high on the agenda as Catholic patriarchs and bishops of the Middle East meet this week in Harissa, Lebanon, to discuss Ecclesia in Medio Oriente, the apostolic exhortation by Pope Benedict XVI that furnishes a “road map” for the work of the Church in that region.
Read more by clicking below:
Religious freedom is top priority for Church leaders in Middle East : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

National Catholic Reporter defies Vatican, calls for women's ordination : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

The following excerpts are from Catholic Culture's Catholic World News:
  • The National Catholic Reporter has called for the ordination of women to the Catholic priesthood, condemning the Church’s teaching on the issue as “unjust.”
  • “Barring women from ordination to the priesthood is an injustice that cannot be allowed to stand,” the Reporter proclaimed in an editorial published December 3.
  • The editorial decried the Vatican’s decision to dismiss Roy Bourgeois from the Maryknoll society because of his public support for women’s ordination, and concluded by saying that the paper “joins its voice” with that of Bourgeois in that effort.
  • The editorial stand by the National Catholic Reporter is a clear challenge to Church authority.
Read more by clicking below:
National Catholic Reporter defies Vatican, calls for women's ordination : News Headlines - Catholic Culture

Monday, December 03, 2012

Pope Benedict Joins Twitter; Greeted by Profane, Hateful Tweets | LifeNews.com

The following excerpts are from LifeNews.com:
  • Pope Benedict joined Twitter today and was greeted by hateful tweets from Catholic bashers laced with profanity. Pope Benedict XVI ’s new Twitter account has been revealed, @Pontifex, and it already has more than 100,000 followers and is expected to be eventually followed by millions.
Note: I am sure the Pope would have this passage from The Gospel of John in mind: John 15:18-19: "If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you." 
    Read more by clicking below:
    Pope Benedict Joins Twitter; Greeted by Profane, Hateful Tweets | LifeNews.com

    THE POPE ON TWITTER



    VOICE OF UNITY AND LEADERSHIP FOR THE CHURCH

    Vatican City, 3 December 2012 (VIS) - A press conference was held this morning in the Holy See Press Office to explain the presence of the Pope on Twitter and to provide additional information on the use of the new media in the Vatican.

    The conference was presented by Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, Msgr. Paul Tighe, secretary of the same dicastery, Fr. Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See Press Office, Vatican Radio and the Vatican Television Centre, Professor Gian Maria Vian, editor of 'L'Osservatore Romano' and Greg Burke, media advisor to the Secretariat of State. Claire Diaz-Ortiz, Twitter's director of Social Innovation, was also present.

    Given below are extracts from the English-language Note explaining the presence of the Holy Father on Twitter:

    "The Pope's presence on Twitter is a concrete expression of his conviction that the Church must be present in the digital arena. ... The Pope's presence on Twitter can be seen as the 'tip of the iceberg' that is the Church's presence in the world of new media. The Church is already richly present in this environment – there exist a whole range of initiatives from the official websites of various institutions and communities to the personal sites, blogs and micro-blogs of public church figures and of individual believers. The Pope's presence on Twitter is ultimately an endorsement of the efforts of these 'early adapters' to ensure that the Good News of Jesus Christ and the teaching of his Church is permeating the forum of exchange and dialogue that is being created by social media. His presence is intended to be an encouragement to all Church institutions and people of faith to be attentive to develop an appropriate profile for themselves and their convictions in the 'digital continent'. The Pope's tweets will be available to believers and non-believers to share, discuss and to encourage dialogue. It is hoped that the Pope's short messages, and the fuller messages that they seek to encapsulate, will give rise to questions for people from different countries, languages and cultures".

    "Part of the challenge for the Church in the area of new media is to establish a networked or capillary presence that can effectively engage the debates, discussions and dialogues that are facilitated by social media and that invite direct, personal and timely responses of a type that are not so easily achieved by centralized institutions. Moreover, such a networked or capillary structure reflects the truth of the Church as a community of communities which is alive both universally and locally. The Pope's presence on Twitter will represent his voice as a voice of unity and leadership for the Church but it will also be a powerful invitation to all believers to express their 'voices', to engage their 'followers' and 'friends' and to share with them the hope of the Gospel that speaks of God’s unconditional love for all men and women".

    "In addition to the direct engagement with the questions, debates and discussions of people that is facilitated by new media, the Church recognizes the importance of new media as an environment that allows to teach the truth that the Lord has passed to His Church, to listen to others, to learn about their cares and concerns, to understand who they are and for what they are searching. ... It is for this reason that it has been decided to launch the Pope's Twitter channel with a formal question and answer format. This launch is also an indication of the importance that the Church gives to listening and is a warranty of its ongoing attentiveness to the conversations, commentaries and trends that express so spontaneously and insistently the preoccupations and hopes of people".

    The first tweets from the Pope's handle on Twitter will be given on 12 December, Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Initially tweets will be published with the Wednesday general audiences, although they may subsequently become more frequent. The first tweets, on 12 December, will respond to questions put to the Pope on matters of faith. The public can send questions between now and 12 December in the languages listed below. The official Papal handle is @pontifex.

    In addition to English, tweets will also be published in the following languages:

    Spanish @pontifex_es

    Italian @pontifex_it

    Portuguese @pontifex_pt

    German @pontifex_de

    Polish @pontifex_pl

    Arabic @pontifex_ar

    French @pontifex_fr

    Other languages may be added in the future. Further information can be obtained at http://blog.twitter.com/


    You can find more information at: www.visnews.org
    The news items contained in the Vatican Information Service may be used, in part or in their entirety, by quoting the source:
    V.I.S. -Vatican Information Service.
    Copyright © Vatican Information Service 00120 Vatican City

    :0

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