Category: Learn & Live the Faith

A Marian Heart
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A Marian Heart

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The other day my spiritual director challenged me to better emulate the heart of Mary in word and deed. As a person who claims to be devoted to the Blessed Virgin, I must admit, there are times my actions do not reflect my belief. From his simple, yet challenging comment, I realized my devotion to […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: Saving Education from Experts

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I can remember vividly that August morning nearly eleven years ago.  I sat cross-legged on the floor of my family room facing my soon to be two year old son reclining in his little rocking chair and my newborn daughter nestled in her baby swing.  The house was quiet. My husband had just left for […]

The Promise of the Spirit
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The Promise of the Spirit

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Acts 2:1-11 They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak THE PROMISE OF THE SPIRIT The Gang of Twelve was in the house. The Big Three, Peter, James, and John, Mary the Mother of God, Matthias, the newly ordained Apostle, and 120 disciples waited on the Lord to produce what he […]

Family Graces: Joy in Parenting
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Family Graces: Joy in Parenting

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Despite the message our culture sends, marriage and parenting aren’t the frightful things they’re often made out to be. The hardships that come in family life are outweighed by true and lasting joy, when we keep the proper perspective – perspective being the key word here. Parenting isn’t easy, but it makes us into the […]

St. Rita of Cascia
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St. Rita of Cascia

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It is common for a child growing up in a Catholic home to know about Saints.[i] Many Catholic children are asked “to name that Saint”, or the most important question of all “what is your Confirmation name.” These questions take thinking and researching. There are times where researching a Saint can be almost impossible. According […]

Twelve Other Forms of Marian Piety
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Twelve Other Forms of Marian Piety

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In my last article, I looked to the rosary as the Marian devotion par excellence.  Some people may find the rosary difficult to pray, or they desire to honor Mary in another way or additional ways.  Below are twelve other ways in which a person can honor Mary beside the rosary.  By no means should this […]

Reflections for Sunday, May 24, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, May 24, 2015

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Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading Acts 2:1-11 2nd Reading: 1 Corinthians 12:3-7, 12-13 Responsorial: Psalm 104:1, 24, 29-31, 34 Gospel: John 20:19-23 Pentecost, A Time to Say Yes to Work of the Holy Spirit and No to Fear The doors were locked. (John 20:19) Fear can be such […]

There Will Be Much Rejoicing
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There Will Be Much Rejoicing

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There is so much suffering. Homeless men, women and even countless children on the sidewalks of our cities. … Refugees from war-torn Syria and numerous African countries. … Immigrants fleeing dangerous circumstances in Central America and risking everything to sneak into the United States. … People whose lives are turned upside-down by drug abuse – […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: Six Words to Transform the Family

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On May 13th, Pope Francis continued his catechesis on the family by reflecting on three phrases: “May I?”, “Thank you”, and “Pardon me”. These simple phrases are difficult to put into practice but “when they are ignored, their absence can cause cracks in the foundation of the family, which can lead to its collapse. If […]

'Canonizations give hope to Christians in the Holy Land'
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‘Canonizations give hope to Christians in the Holy Land’

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By Oliver Maksan JERUSALEM—Pope Francis’ May 17, 2015 canonization of two Palestinians, Blessed Marie Alphonsine Ghattas and Blessed Mariam Baouardi, “gives hope to Christians in the Holy Land,” said the bishop responsible for the Palestinian territories. In an interview with international Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need, Auxiliary Bishop William Shomali said that […]

Getting to Yes: Courtship, Not Just Dating
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Getting to Yes: Courtship, Not Just Dating

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When my family migrated from the Philippines to the United States in 1986, I didn’t want to go. I wanted to finish college at home and settle down with whomever God picked out for me to marry, after a courtship of at least five years. But God laughed at my plans. I met my future […]

The Power of the Spirit
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The Power of the Spirit

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“Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.” With those words to the apostle Thomas, Jesus bestowed a wonderful blessing upon all of those disciples who chose to follow him yet never actually heard him preach a sermon or saw him heal a leper. While walking the earth, our Lord had contemporaries whom […]

Our Lady’s Three Rosaries
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Our Lady’s Three Rosaries

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In her apparitions to the shepherd children at Fatima, Mary revealed herself as the Queen of the Holy Rosary and encouraged the daily recitation of the rosary. This devotion to the Mother of God has been recommended to the faithful for centuries. In fact, when one is attached to habitual sin, oftentimes in the confessional […]

Reflections for Sunday, May 17, 2015
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Reflections for Sunday, May 17, 2015

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Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord Meditation and Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion Mass Readings: 1st Reading Acts 1:1-11 2nd Reading: Ephesians 1:17-23 Responsorial: Psalm 47:2-3, 6-9 Gospel: Mark 16:15-20 Experiencing a Fresh Infilling and Release of the Holy Spirit In a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit. (Acts […]

The Commitment Differences: 5 Reasons Faith-Filled Marriages Work
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The Commitment Differences: 5 Reasons Faith-Filled Marriages Work

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Countless articles, memoirs and studies explore why so many marriages in our society deteriorate and ultimately fail. Just recently, a blog post at USA TODAY by Anthony D’Ambrosio gained attention for identifying the top five reasons that marriages don’t work: intimacy issues, financial strife, failure to truly connect, desire for attention, and an obsession with […]

The Fifth Gospel: Acts 10:25-48
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The Fifth Gospel: Acts 10:25-48

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As an avocational historian I spend a lot of time thinking about the past. The days gone by fascinate me and I often wonder what it was like for people who lived in earlier times. Saint Peter writes in his second epistle that, “There is no time with God: a single day: a thousand years: […]

The Road to Traditionalism in the 21st Century
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The Road to Traditionalism in the 21st Century

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Dear Kevin, Thanks for indulging me in my desire to lure traditionalists into ordinary form parishes. While you may disagree with this being a workable solution to the liturgy wars, I hope at least that it starts a conversation about how we should improve relations between traditionalists and the wider Church. Now in your last […]

Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, The Joy of the Gospel
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Front Row With Francis: Building a Godly Marriage

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Pope Francis calls three realities of creation a masterpiece; man, woman, and the family, which is the love between man and woman. To write a gloss, brotherly love is good, and even the love for a child is good, but it is the love between a man and a woman which results in a marriage […]

The Powerful Humility of Mothers
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The Powerful Humility of Mothers

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God gives mothers whatever good they ask for their children. Why? Because they are humble. They are living signs of humility and only the humble are filled with God. Jesus also gifts mothers with a share of His sorrows and passion to be applied to the salvation of their children. “It makes me happy to suffer for you, […]

Upside
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Upside

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The last month has, at times, been a blur. After being hit by a car on my bike just over a month ago, I have had to look at life through a different lens. Is there really an “upside” to tragedy? Indulge me as I reflect on the lessons I believe God is trying to […]

May is Mary’s Month: The Scriptural Foundation for Marian Devotion
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May is Mary’s Month: The Scriptural Foundation for Marian Devotion

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On May 1st the Church celebrated the memorial of St. Joseph the Worker. May 1st also inaugurated the Month of Mary. The memorial of St. Joseph almost seems fitting as we begin a month dedicated to Mary because we remember how St. Joseph provided for the Holy Family as a carpenter. To celebrate St. Joseph […]

Iraq: 'We Priests and Nuns Will Be the Last to Leave'
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Iraq: ‘We Priests and Nuns Will Be the Last to Leave’

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By Oliver Maksan “At night we often hear gunfire. But luckily we are quite a bit away from the fighting,” Father Steven says. In fact, the town of Alqosh is only 10 miles away from the front line, where the heavily armed Kurdish Peshmerga forces and ISIS fighters are facing off. When the weather is […]

Love Unlimited
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Love Unlimited

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Some people seem to think that the Catholic Church is just another multi-national corporation, Catholicism, Inc., with the Pope as CEO.  Obviously, this view is a bit skewed, but is not totally off-base.  The Church is in fact an international organization.  That’s actually one of the meanings of the word “Catholic”– this church is no […]

Whatever the Cost
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Whatever the Cost

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A year ago, I wrote an article challenging the American Church to do more in the face of religious persecution of our Christian brethren abroad. At that time, the kidnapping of 276 young school girls by the Islamist group Boko Haram had captured the world’s attention. I wrote the following: “That so many Christians in […]

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