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Feast of the Holy Innocents

Feast of the Holy Innocents

Today is the Feast of the Holy Innocents, also called Childermas, or Innocents’ Day, which is celebrated in the Christian churches in the West on December 28 and in the Eastern churches on December 29. This Feast commemorates the massacre of the children by King Herod in his attempt to kill the infant Jesus (Matthew 2:16–18).

Today the Church remembers the Holy Innocents, the male children executed because of Herod’s fury to find the Christ child. Herod, fearing for his throne after the Magi told him of the birth of Jesus, ordered the massacre of all Bethlehem boys age two and under hoping that Jesus would be among those killed (Matthew 2:1-18). According to Matthew, this fulfilled a prophecy of Jeremiah 31:15:
“A voice was heard in Ramah, sobbing and loud lamentation; Rachel weeping for her children, and she would not be consoled, since they were no more.”

As we celebrate this feast, we should recall that the slaughter of innocents that goes on today. Abortion is a barbaric practice which kills innocent babies in the womb. It is a good time to re-double our efforts to pray for an end to abortion. Please lift up your prayers for these babies, and for all expectant parents and their unborn children.

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Morning Prayer

In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ I will begin this day.

I thank you, Lord, for having preserved me during the night. I will do my best to make all I do today pleasing to You and in accordance with Your will. My dear mother Mary, watch over me this day. My Guardian Angel, take care of me. St. Joseph and all you saints of God, pray for me.

O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all my relatives and friends, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father.

I wish to gain all the indulgences attached to the prayers I shall say and the good works I shall perform this day. Amen.

Baby Jesus with Angels and Mary

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Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus

Come thou long expected Jesus

“Socrates had no one to foretell his birth. Buddha had no one to pre-announce him and his message, or tell the day when he would sit under the tree. Confucius did not have the name of his mother and his birthplace recorded, nor were they given to Men Centuries before he arrived, so that when he did come, Men would know he was a Messenger from God.

But, with Christ it was different.

Because of the Old Testament Prophecies, His Coming was not Unexpected. There were no Predictions about Buddha, Confucius, Lao-tze, Mohammed, or anyone else; but there were Predictions about Christ. Others just came and said, “Here I am, believe me”. They were, therefore, only Men-among-Men and not the Divine in the Human. Christ alone stepped-out of that Line saying, “Search the Writings of the Jewish people and the Related History of the Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, and Romans”.
(Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

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Morning Prayer

holy family

In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ I will begin this day.

I thank you, Lord, for having preserved me during the night. I will do my best to make all I do today pleasing to You and in accordance with Your will. My dear mother Mary, watch over me this day. My Guardian Angel, take care of me. St. Joseph and all you saints of God, pray for me.

O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all my relatives and friends, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father.

I wish to gain all the indulgences attached to the prayers I shall say and the good works I shall perform this day. Amen.

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Why does it matter if you leave the Catholic Church?

church history

Why does it matter if you leave the Catholic Church?

It matters because as Catholics we think it is important to belong to the Church that Christ founded 2000 years ago. It matters because when you leave the Catholic Church, you leave the Eucharist – and all the sacraments that Christ Himself instituted. It matters because as Catholics we believe the Church contains the fullness of the truth, because it was founded by Christ Himself. This does not mean that we think other religions and Christian denominations do not contain any truth, for they do. But the Catholic Church, since it was founded by Jesus, contains the fullness of truth, so we think it is very important to belong to the Catholic Church and share our faith with others.

Does this mean that Catholics are holier than non-Catholics? Absolutely not. Some of the holiest people I know are Catholic, and some of the most unholiest people I know are Catholic. We’ve been given this beautiful gift of our Catholic faith, and yet too many of us have taken it for granted (guilty as charged!) or have not appreciated what we have.

The Catholic Church is both human and divine. Because it is divine, it will last forever. Because it is human, it will have scandals, and sinful people in it, just like what you will find in all denominations and religions. Scandals do not prove that the Catholic Church is false. They only prove what is obvious: that the Church contains sinners as well as saints.

Despite humans messing things up at times, the Catholic Church was founded by Christ, and will FOREVER be guided by the Holy Spirit until the end of time, as quoted in scripture:

“I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. John 16:12-13

“I am with you always, to the close of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20

Among all the Christian churches, ONLY the Catholic Church has existed since the time of Jesus. Every other Christian church is an offshoot of the Catholic Church. The Eastern Orthodox churches broke away from unity with the pope in 1054. The Protestant churches were established during the Reformation, which began in 1517. Most of today’s Protestant churches are actually offshoots of the original Protestant offshoots, each with their own man made traditions.

Only the Catholic Church existed in the tenth century, in the fifth century, and in the first century, faithfully teaching the doctrines given by Christ to the apostles, omitting nothing. The line of popes can be traced back, in unbroken succession, to Peter himself. This is unequaled by any institution in history.

Even the oldest government is new compared to the papacy, and the churches to which door-to-door missionaries belong are young compared to the Catholic Church. Many of these churches began as recently as the nineteenth or twentieth centuries. None of them can claim to be the Church Jesus established.

The Catholic Church has existed for 2,000 years, despite constant opposition from the world. This is testimony to the Church’s divine origin. It must be more than a merely human organization, especially considering that its human members—even some of its leaders—have been unwise, corrupt, or prone to heresy. Any merely human organization with such members would have collapsed early on. The fact that the Catholic Church is today the most vigorous church (and the largest, with about a billion members) is testimony not to the cleverness of the Church’s leaders, but to the protection of the Holy Spirit.

If you have never studied Church history, study it now and see what the early Church was really like, what Catholics believed, and what they practiced. If you study it you will see that the early Church was totally Catholic. The early Church believed in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist; Early Christians did pray for their dead; Christ did give the apostles the power to forgive sins; Peter was clearly chosen by Christ as the leader of His Church; Mary was loved and honored by the early Christians; Whole households (including babies) were baptized. Think about it – if you are looking for a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, you can’t get more personal than when you receive His body, blood, soul, and divinity in the holy Eucharist, and are a part of the actual Church that Christ founded.

It’s important to know history, know why we are Catholic, and embrace the beauty and truth of our faith. So many people converted to the Catholic Church after studying Church history, particularly regarding the issue of authority. (Two great books to read on church history are: “Four Witnesses”, by Rod Bennett, and “The Father Knows Best” by Jimmy Akin.)

The Catholic Church, founded by Christ, contains the fullness of Truth. Be grateful for the beautiful gift of our Catholic faith, and then pass on our beautiful teachings and traditions to your children and grandchildren. If you don’t, who will?

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Gentle Woman

Gentle

Gentle woman, quiet light
Morning star, so strong and bright,
gentle Mother, peaceful dove,
teach us wisdom; teach us love.

You were chosen by the Father;
You were chosen for the Son.
You were chosen from all women
and for women, shining one.

Gentle woman, quiet light
Morning star, so strong and bright,
gentle Mother, peaceful dove,
teach us wisdom; teach us love.

Blessed are you among women,
blest in turn, all women, too.
Blessed they with peaceful spirits.
Blessed they with gentle hearts.

Gentle woman, quiet light
Morning star, so strong and bright,
gentle Mother, peaceful dove,
teach us wisdom; teach us love.

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Remember – Holy Day of Obligation this Monday, December 8th!

whose conception

Remember – this Monday, December 8th is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, and a Holy Day of Obligation. Many think it is about the conception of Jesus, but it is not. This Feast is a celebration of Mary’s immaculate conception. Here is some more information that helps to clarify this feast: