Volume II / Issue 15 / July 2017
From the Editorial Desk:
Well friends, it has been quite a busy time around here at our Little House of Prayer. Book sales have been slowly revving up, so we have been working hard to get books shipped out. Also we are getting ready for our trip to Centralia Illinois for Frater Francis Dominic's ordination to Deacon.
Frater will be leaving July 27th and will stop in Springfield Ill. to visit with his Aunt and a couple of Catholic friends from Facebook. Then the 29th he will be at a Church with his brother in Champaign Ill. Monday the 31st. Both he and His Holiness will be meeting up in Centralia to get things ready for the ordination on Tuesday the 1st. Then Wednesday will be "Deacon" Francis Dominic's first sermon at Mass. He is pretty excited and a bit nervous about it. There will be visiting priest, bishops and protestants there for the Mass. Thursday he will be in Mount Vernon for his brothers concert, and then back to Topeka to the grind!
Check out our prayer request for this month. Frater Francis Dominic is needing two new tires for his car before leaving on the trip. Also he is needing clothes pretty bad. He is in need of 3 pair black pants. He has only one Cassock to wear that is presentable. He could use two more. If you can help him out with this it would be appreciated.
This month the July edition of the Olive Tree is packed with all kinds of goodies! This month is the month for the feast day of the Precious Blood, so be sure to read the article! Also an article entitled "Conformity to the will of God". I think you will be blessed by the message. Plus there is so much more!
So without further adieu.... let us read on!!!!
Conformity to the Will of God
Have you ever listened to yourself pray? Or for that matter have you ever listened to others pray? It would seem that very often in prayer we do not typically pray for God’s will to be done as much as we pray for “our will to be done,” so to speak. In other words, when most people pray, it seems that they are praying for things that they need at the time: a job . . . . health . . . . personal relationships . . . . finances . . . . the list goes on and on and on. Typically when most people pray, let’s face it, it is when people are desperate for an answer. Quite frankly, though, we should go to God in all situations and NOT only when we need something from God. As we ascend spiritually, so to speak, we will find that our relationship with God is based on doing His will and not based on our own. As such, the question becomes “how do I do the will of God in my life?” “How do I make my life more ‘in tune’ with God and what He wants?”
Saint Alphonsus Liguori wrote: "If we wish to Satisfy the Heart of God, we must in everything, bring our own Will into Conformity with His. We must also Strive to bring our Will into Uniformity with His, as regards all that He Commands."
In regards to the above two sentences, St. Alphonsus gave us an awful lot to ponder in those few words. In its’ totality, I think these two short sentences would be enough to scare anyone away. I mean, let’s face it, how does one “satisfy the Heart of God?” How do we bring “everything” in our life and conform it to the will of God? How do we follow “all that He Commands?” Surely, we must be set up for failure based on what was said above. But is that really the case? Why don’t we break it down into three short points and go from there.
1) “Satisfy the Heart of God”
This is certainly easier “said” than “done,” but how in the world do we satisfy the Heart of God? As stated above, St. Alphonsus wrote that we must do everything with God in mind. I would imagine this word “everything” is what scares people off. It’s not that people are not wanting to be in union with God. Yes, people want to do the will of God. People want to do God’s will. In Proverbs we read: "The righteous eateth to the satisfying of his soul: but the belly of the wicked shall want." (Proverbs 13:25) Did you ever eat a good meal and get really satisfied? It's funny how we human beings stay "satisfied" for such a short period of time. Even when we get a "full belly" we soon start thinking of other things that would "satisfy" our hunger. St. Augustine had this in mind when he wrote his "Confessions." St. Augustine discovered in his own life that he would be "satisfied" with something until it became "boring" to him. In other words, he would keep doing something until it did not satisfy him any longer. In the case of St Augustine, he found "satisfaction" in a number of items: love of women . . . love of drink . . . . love of learning. St. Augustine became "consumed" with each of these things in his life. All of them brought him pleasure and satisfaction and contentment. Each one of them satisfied him briefly . . . . that is, until they no longer satisfied him. And at that point he would go in search of something else that would "satisfy" him. He had a passion for everything that brought him satisfaction. That is, until it no longer satisfied him and then he would simply move on to something else. What St. Augustine discovered was that every thing that he thought satisfied him ultimately came to an end. St Augustine discovered that only "true satisfaction" . . . . . in other words, "lasting satisfaction" . . . . came from the love of God. All else ultimately fails. The only thing that is never-ending for us is the love of God. He is truly satisfying. And we satisfy God ultimately by going to Him . . . . . listening to Him . . . . spending time with Him. God knows that we are not perfect. God knows that we will make mistakes. But we can satisfy the Heart of God by bringing ourselves to Him and committing ourselves to Him.
2) Bring Our Will
What does Our Blessed Saviour have to say in this regard? In the Tenth Chapter of St. John’s Gospel, Our Lord states: “I and My Father are One.” (St. John 10:30) Have you ever worked on a project where the people involved are not 'working as one?" In other words, one person sees the project going one direction and then someone else sees the project in a different way. And before you know it, the project is not going anywhere because nobody can "get together." In football, can you imagine all the players on the offensive line doing their "own thing." One player goes this way and another players goes his own direction and so on. In order for the play to work, each of the players have to be on the "same page," so to speak. In the spiritual sense, we have to be on the "same page" with God. This is why Our Blessed Saviour could say that "I and My Father are One." Have you ever been in the position of speaking for someone else? In order to do this, we have to know the person we are representing. We have to know what they would do and what they would want done in a given situation. "Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known Me, Philip? He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father." (St. John 14:9) People have said to me in the past that they see my mother in me. Or they might say they see my father when they look at me. It might be the way that I look. Or it might be the things I say. It might be how I move my fingers or walk a certain way or laugh a certain way. Children reflect their parents. Students reflect their teachers. We, as Christians, reflect Christ. In order to do this we need to know God and what He would want us to do. We have to make God's will our will. So often, as we were saying above about "prayer," we want our will to be done instead of God's will. We need to bring our will into tune with God's will.
3) All that He Commands
St. Paul writes: "In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." (I Thessalonians 5:18) The concept "everything" scares a lot of people. But if you are anything like me, you give your "everything" when you have a passion for it. If you discover that you have a "passion" for a specific sport or a specific sports team, don't you spend countless hours watching games . . . . buying tickets . . . buying books . . . . finding scores . . . learning about specific players? Same way with someone who discovers a love of music, that person spends their time learning their craft, . . . . practicing their instrument, . . . . spending time with other musicians. Whether your passion is sports . . . or music . . . . or cooking . . . learning a language . . . . or a relationship with the love of your life . . . whatever example we come up with, we give it our "all." We do everything we can to satisfy our passion. This is how it should be with God. We should give Him our "all." So often for us, though, we give Him our "all" when the time is right . . . when we need something . . . . when we are ready. We should always be ready to do the will of God and all that He commands in our life. This takes time and effort on our part. We need to continually put into practice thinking of God in everything that we do, whether that be our prayer life, or the way we relate to others around us: family, friends, coworkers, even complete strangers. Habits take time . . . whether they are good habits or bad habits. Habits don't develop after one time or one day or one week or one year. When it comes to God and Spiritual things, as human beings, we are impatient. We want everything now. We want it five minutes ago. And if we don't have the "perfect" relation with God right away, we get disappointed and give up. Our challenge is to continually grow in our relationship with God. The challenge is not to be "perfect." If that was the key everyone of us would fail. But as long as we continue to grow in our love for God, we will continue to grow obedient to Him in everything that we do. The key is to have God in mind when we have to decide things in our life. Too often, we only have ourselves in mind when we make decisions in our life.
The Funny Pharmacy
A joyful mind maketh age flourishing: a sorrowful spirit drieth up the bones.
Who is Pope Michael and How is He Related to the Catholic Church?
In 1958, cardinal Roncalli was elected as “John 23rd”, and many accepted him as pope. However it has subsequently been shown that he was a pre-election modernist heretic and unable to be elected. Therefore, there was no pope at that time, and this problem continued onward for many years.
There were some talks about electing a pope, but instead many followed the lineage in the Vatican which we believe to be invalid because of its compromise with the Catholic Faith. Cardinals should have proceeded to an election of a pope since Roncalli’s election did not produce a pope but an invalid election, but they did not do so.
The traditional bishops and clergy did not prevent this invalid election of Roncalli or respond by electing a pope, so this shifted the burden of electing a pope to the laymen. Therefore, pope Michael called for a papal election among as many known sedevacantist chapels as possible, using Radko Janskey’s listings of traditional Catholic masses, and was elected pope in 1990 by 6 laymen. (Sedevacantists then believed correctly that there was no pope; there are still sedevacantists today who reject pope Michael’s election)
So we believe pope Michael is pope of the Catholic Church, and that most churches that claim to be Catholic today, including “pope” Francis in the Vatican, are non-Catholic and are like a counterfeit Catholicism. Just like a fake dollar bill, this counterfeit Catholicism, which is sometimes called the “conciliar church”, looks like Catholicism but is not due to a substantial change in Catholic teaching which attempted to deny Catholic teaching or accept heresies as Catholic teaching.
Therefore, in response to this rise in a counterfeit of Catholicism, we have worked to conserve the Catholic Church with the unchangeable dogmatic teachings the Catholic Faithful profess.
The Most Precious Blood of Our Lord
Why do we celebrate the feast day of the most precious blood of Our Lord?
July 1 is the commemoration of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus as it is preserved in all Catholic churches at the hour of Mass. Everyone who wishes to become a son of God the Father, as he becomes by Sanctifying Grace by receiving in his mouth the Blessed Eucharist which is the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. All the saints of the Old Testament, when their bodies rise from the grave on the Last Day, will receive the Precious Blood of Jesus. Our Lord said of the chalice which contained His Precious Blood at the Last Supper, “I will not drink of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I shall drink it with you knew in the Kingdom of My Father.” The Kingdom of God the Father whose children we must incarnate becomes in order to enjoy the happiness of Heaven forever.
In Catholic belief, the Blood of Christ is precious because it is Christ's own great ransom paid for the redemption of mankind. In this belief, as there was to be no remission of sin without the shedding of blood, the "Incarnate Word" not only offered his life for the salvation of the world, but he offered to give up his life by a bloody death, and to hang bloodless, soulless and dead upon the Cross for the salvation of humanity. Jesus is said to have given his life - his blood - for the sake of all humanity, atoning for every form of human sin.
The Precious Blood is a call to repentance and reparation.
As a Priest I always spend the month of July in a special way remembering the passion and crucifixion of Our Lord. Our Chapel is always decorated in honour of the most precious blood and the devotions are held in prayer services.
As Catholic Christians the feast day is very important and should be spent in a pious way. It is also a day of obligation where we sustain from meat. Christ needs to be the core and centre of the lives of all of us who are called Catholic. We need to meditate on the passion and crucifixion of Christ and the teachings he gave us during his life of ministry.
Most important is that we study the scriptures on a daily basis.
The Bible is our Core of faith and we should pray with the bible while studying the passages of the Gospel. I always read the Passion and Crucifixion of Jesus in the various Gospels when I feel down or sad and sometimes need advice in my own ministry life. I also cherish Christ as the High Priest and ask him for advice for my Holy Priesthood. Especially in our modern times as it isn’t always easy to be a Traditional Priest in a progressing society.
The most Precious Blood of Our Lord is not pagan idolatry but reminding us of his sacrifice on the Cross and his Passion. The Saints all had a special devotion towards the most precious blood of Our Lord and the devotion strengthened the Saints religious and pious lives. We should all step into the footsteps of the Saints and follow Christ.
There are many devotions the Church gave us towards Jesus such as the rosary of the most precious blood of Christ and we have many prayers.
As a strong follower of Christ he is the core of my faith.
Here is a prayer that I found online to pray in honour of the most precious blood of Our Lord.
O Precious Blood of Jesus, infinite price of sinful man's redemption, both drink and laver of our souls, Thou who dost plead continually the cause of man before the throne of infinite mercy; from the depths of my heart, I adore Thee, and so far as I am able, I would requite Thee for the insults and outrages which Thou dost continually receive from human beings, and especially from those who rashly dare to blaspheme Thee. Who would not bless this Blood of infinite value? Who doth not feel within himself the fire of the love of Jesus who shed it all for us? What would be my fate, had I not been redeemed by this Divine Blood? Who hath drawn it from the veins of my Saviour, even to the last drop? Ah, this surely was the work of love. O infinite love, which has given us this saving balm! O balm beyond all price, welling up from the fountain of infinite love, grant that every heart and every tongue may be enabled to praise Thee, magnify Thee and give Thee thanks both now and for evermore. Amen!
The Pope Speaks: Thy Will Be Done
A few months ago we considered our duty to thank God for all He sends. We need to consider His holy will. First of all how should we measure success? The world measures success by the size of our bank account, our big house, new car, etc. Some measure success by the number of our friends or even public opinion of us. And yet, Jesus said:
“And you shall be hated by all men for my name's sake: but he that shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved.” (Matthew 10:22)
So in God's eyes there must be another way to measure success. And let us remember that the only one Whose opinion truly counts is Almighty God. God's measure of success for us is our conformity with His holy will.
Saint Teresa of Avila said: “Those who give themselves to prayer should concentrate solely on this: the conformity of their wills with the divine will. They should be convinced that this constitutes their highest perfection. The more fully they practice this, the greater gifts they will receive from God, and the greater progress they will make in the interior life.”
And so, if we want to be a success in prayer, then we need to conform ourselves completely to the Will of God. And we need to succeed in prayer, because failure here leads to eternal misery. Just as oxygen is necessary to life, prayer is necessary to our spiritual life. Three minutes without oxygen and our soul leaves the body in death. Scripture reminds us to pray without ceasing. (I Thessalonians 5:17)
Saint Vincent de Paul said: “Conformity to the divine will a sovereign remedy for all evils.” Yes, God has all things in His Providence. The only true evil in the world is sin. We call many things evil, because they go against our desires. However, God sends them for our good just as a good doctor prescribes medicine that tastes bad, but is necessary for our health. The Will of God is the medicine for our spiritual health, that comes from the Divine Physician.
How do we recognize God's will?
First of all God expresses His will to us through His Commandments, especially the Ten Commandments. “If you love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15) God also speaks to us through the Laws He has inspired His holy Church to make for our own salvation and sanctification. Seven of these are known to us through the Catechism as the Commandments of the Church.
Secondly, He speaks to us through spiritual reading, which is why daily spiritual reading is essential to salvation.
Thirdly, God speaks to us through meditation. Meditation is nothing more than taking divine truth to heart by pondering it. “Thinking these things with myself, and pondering them in my heart, that to be allied to wisdom is immortality, And that there is great delight in her friendship, and inexhaustible riches in the works of her hands, and in the exercise of conference with her, wisdom, and glory in the communication of her words: I went about seeking, that I might take her to myself.” (Wisdom 8:17-18) “But Mary kept all these words, pondering them in her heart.” (Luke 2:19)
Fourthly, God also speaks to us through the superiors He has placed over us, whether spiritual or secular. Such include the Pope, the diocesan Bishop in union with the Pope and the Pastor appointed by the diocesan Bishop over our parish. In the secular area, this includes all lawful authorities. Finally, in the family, the father and husband is head of the household with authority over his wife and children. All authority should be exercised prudently, but obedience must be in all things except those, which are certainly sinful. “Let every soul be subject to higher powers: for there is no power but from God: and those that are, are ordained of God. Therefore he that resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God. And they that resist, purchase to themselves damnation.” (Romans 13:1-2) “By me kings reign, and lawgivers decree just things, By me princes rule, and the mighty decree justice.” (Proverbs 8:15-16)
Father Michael Muller in Prayer the Key to Salvation (page 11) says: “Just as Christ, the Redeemer, appointed the Apostles, and especially Peter, to succeed Him in His office of teaching the will of God. Where Peter and the other Apostles are found in their lawful successors, there only is the true and entire will of God taught; and those only who embrace and follow it faithfully, have well-founded hopes of salvation. They who follow any other rule in acquiring salvation deceive themselves. Instead of God's will, they do their own, or they follow the suggestions of the devil, or those of evil-minded, perverse teachers, who substitute their own will and opinions for the will of God; they imitate Adam and Eve, who believed the devil's suggestions rather than the infallible word of God.”
And finally God speaks by the circumstances of our lives. God sends many things into our lives for good or for us to do good to others. In fact, one of the Fathers of the Church defines the good life as everyone we come in contact is better off for having had us in their life.
Father Michael Muller wrote a book, Prayer the Key to Salvation. Divine Providence place this in Our hands three years ago. In Our meditations We believed We needed to find something new on prayer to meditate upon. We had looked around at Our various resources all to no avail. We were returning from the grocery store and happened to take a different route and the Rescue Mission Warehouse Sale had signs out. We decided to stop a moment and take a look. For the first time they had books. We found many good books there and realized We should head home as We had things that needed to be refrigerated. In fact, there were so many We returned the next day for another load. In any case, Divine Providence had this book among the lot and We began to read. On pages 6-7 We read:
“It was for obedience to the will of God that Abel obtained from the Lord the testimony that he was just; that Henoch was translated by God, in order that he should not see death. On account of his obedience to the will of God, Noah and his family were saved from the flood; Abraham because the father of many nations; Joseph was raised to the highest dignity at the court of the King of Egypt. Moses became the great servant, prophet, and lawgiver of the land, and the great performer of miracles with the people of God. Obedience to the will of God was, for the Jews, at all times, an impregnable rampart against all their enemies; it turned Saul, a persecutor of the Church, into a Paul, the Apostle of the Gentiles; it turned the early Christians into martyrs, for martyrdom does not consist in suffering and dying for the Faith; it consists, rather, in the conformity of the martyrs will to the Divine will, which requires such a kind of death and not another.”
Stop a moment and meditate on just how important it is to conform our self to God's will in ALL things. Obedience to His will will make you a Saint; disobedience to His will is deadly to our souls.
“On the contrary, disobedience turned the rebellious angels out of Heaven; it turned our first parents, Adam and Even, our of Paradise; it made Cain a vagabond and a fugitive on earth; it drowned the human race in the waters of the flood; it burned up the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrha. Disobedience to the will of God led the Jews often into captivity; it drowned Pharoah and all his host in the Red Sea; it turned Nabuchodonor into a wild beast, it laid the city of Jeruslame in ashes; it has ruined, and will still ruin, whole nations, empires, and kingdoms; it will finally put an end to the world, when all those who always rebelled against the will of God will, in an instant, be hurled into the everlasting flames of Hell, by these irresistible words of the Almighty: 'Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, which was prepared for the devil and his angels,' there to obey the laws of God's justice forever.”
Consider these things well, then let us continue: “Man, then, when in opposition to God's will, is altogether out of his place. A tool which no longer corresponds to the end for which it was made is cast away; a wheel in a machinery which prevents others from working is taken out and replaced by another; a limb in the body which becomes burdensome and endangers the functions and life of the others, is cut off and thrown away; a servant who no longer does his master's will is discharged; a rebellious citizen, violating the laws of the state, if put into prison; a child, in an unreasonable opposition to his parents is disinherited.”
It would be good to go to Sacred Scripture and reread the various stories above and take them to heart. Whole nations have been published for disobedience to God's will and they will be punished again.
If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy own will in my holy day, and call the sabbath delightful, and the holy of the Lord glorious, and glorify him, while thou dost not thy own ways, and thy own will is not found: to speak a word: Then shalt thou be delighted in the Lord, and I will lift thee up above the high places of the earth, and will feed thee with the inheritance of Jacob thy father. For the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it. (Isaias 58:13-14)
Let us close with this thought from Michael Muller: “First. That we cannot be saved unless we fulfill the will of God. Secondly. That we are unable to do God's will unless are assisted by Divine grace. Thirdly. That we obtain this grace by prayer alone; that consequently we must pray in order to be saved.”
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Living Catholic: 3 Basic Purposes for Authority
To Grow in Wisdom and Character
The only recorded incident in scripture that references the life of Christ between the ages of two and thirty was a discussion with His parents which involved authority. This occurred when He was twelve.
Should He follow his spiritual calling and be about His Father's business or should He become subject to His parents and leave His ministry at the temple?
And he said to them: How is it that you sought me? did you not know, that I must be about my father' s business? (Luke 2:49)
He chose to do the latter, and the following verse reports,
And Jesus advanced in wisdom, and age, and grace with God and men. (Luke 2:52)
He advanced in these things, while being under the authority of His parents.
To Gain Protection From Destructive Temptations
The nature of submission is not "getting under the domination of authority but rather getting under the protection of authority".
Authority is like an "umbrella of protection", and when we get out from under it, we expose ourselves to unnecessary temptations which are too strong for us to overcome.
Because it is like the sin of witchcraft, to rebel: (I Kings 15:23)
Both Terms, Rebellion and Witchcraft, have the same basic definition which is- subjecting ourselves to the realms and power of Satan. So when someone rebels against the Authority that God has put in there lives, it is just like witchcraft. They are subjecting themselves to the realms and power of Satan.
To Receive Clear Directions for Life Decisions
Correct decisions are based on faith; that is, visualizing what God intends to do.
For all that is not of faith is sin. (Romans 14:23)
One of the most basics aspects of faith is to realize how God gets His directions to us through those He has placed over us.
After the centurion asked Jesus to come and heal his servant, it occured to him that just as his life was structured around a "chain of responsibility," so the kingdom in which God operates must have a similar structure of authority.
When Jesus realized that he understood this, Jesus "marvelled; and said to them that followed him: Amen I say to you, I have not found so great faith in Israel." (Matthew 8:10)
Our faith multiplies as we see how God speaks to us through those He has placed over us.
Catechism Catch Up!: The Grace of God
I have come to realize that most people do not understand what grace is.
One person on Facebook recently gave a good simplistic definition of Grace. They said that "Grace is God's great enabling power." This is a basic but great definition of what grace is. But I would like to go into more detail on what the Church teaches about grace.
Grace is a supernatural gift of God bestowed on us through the merits of Jesus Christ for our salvation. Grace is from God, who has blessed us IN Christ.
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the will of God, to all the saints who are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus. Grace be to you, and peace from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
(St. Paul wishes them grace, first, and peace afterwards, which is the right and natural order. There is no lasting peace without grace. There is no peace worth having which does not spring from a work of grace in the soul. “Grace be to you, and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.”)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with spiritual blessings in heavenly places, in Christ: As he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and unspotted in his sight in charity. Who hath predestined us unto the adoption of children through Jesus Christ unto himself: according to the purpose of his will: Unto the praise of the glory of his grace, in which he hath graced us in his beloved son. (Ephesians 1:2-6)
We have been redeemed through the grace granted in Christ Jesus: Christ merited the supernatural gift of God.
Who hath delivered us and called us by his holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began. (I Timothy 1:9)
Redeemed- delivered us-to redeem means to free or buy back. Humanity was held captive in that it was enslaved by sin.
Merited- a reward for the practice of virtue. So Christ Jesus was divinely rewarded for his sacrificial death on the cross. Jesus in turns offers to those who will except it, the supernatural, free gift of grace.
We have been justified by the grace of Jesus Christ our Savior. The grace is from Christ our Saviour, and the grace is the supernatural gift of God.
Supernatural Gift-a gift of God that is conferred on man that is above all the powers of created nature. In other words it is something that is given that we could never get on our own.
Not by the works of justice, which we have done, but according to his mercy, he saved us, by the laver of regeneration, and renovation of the Holy Ghost; Whom he hath poured forth upon us abundantly, through Jesus Christ our Saviour: That, being justified by his grace, we may be heirs, according to hope of life everlasting. (Titus 3:5-7).
The Laver - the sacred washbowl of the tabernacle and temple ( Exodus 30:18 Exodus 30:28 ; 31:9 ; 35:16 ; 38:8 ; 39:39 ; Exodus 40:7 Exodus 40:11 Exodus 40:30 , etc.), a basin for the water used by the priests in their ablutions.
Of regeneration- the word comes from two greek words: pálin, "again" and génesis, "birth, beginning" in other words a new beginning..a new birth....being born again.
So when we refer to the Laver of regeneration, we are referring to being born again through the sacrament of baptism. but not only are we born again by the Laver, But we are renovated by the Holy Ghost!
Renovation- to restore to good condition; make new or as if new again; repair; to renew.
The renovation of the Holy Ghost is the renovation, the repairing, the renewing of the mind.
St. Ambrose-"Who is the one who is born of the Spirit and is made Spirit? It is one who is renewed in the Spirit of his mind."
And be not conformed to this world; but be reformed (renovated, transformed) in the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is the good, and the acceptable, and the perfect will of God. (Romans 12:2)
The renewal of the mind is what the Holy Spirit does as we continually surrender to his desire to renovate it.
Justified by his grace (Titus 3:7)- In Christian theology, justification is God's act of removing the guilt and penalty of sin while at the same time declaring a sinner righteous through Christ's atoning sacrifice. This is something we are not able to do on our own. It takes the grace-the supernatural gift of God-something we could never get on our own- to be justified. And that grace comes being by being born again in the sacrament of baptism and the renovation of our minds that the Holy Ghost does on a daily basis.
Next I will be talking about two kinds of grace: sanctifying grace and actual grace. Neither of these actual names occur in the Sacred Scripture just as the word "Trinity" is not found. not to worry. We will find plenty of descriptions of both kinds of grace.
Saint Alphonsus wrote this book centuries ago and its lessons are as timely today as they were then. Dearly beloved Christian, impress well on your mind the mysteries of your holy faith, and the things that are necessary for making your confessions and Communions with fruit. And after having learned them well, repeat them at home and teach them to others. You will thus give great pleasure to Jesus Christ; and with a little trouble you shall share in and gain all the good which, through your instructions, others shall afterwards do.
Saint Alphonsus Ligouri -Charity is patient, is kind: charity envieth not, dealeth not perversely; is not puffed up; Is not ambitious, seeketh not her own, is not provoked to anger, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth with the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. (I Corinthians 13:4-7) Saint Paul wrote wonderfully about charity in the 13th chapter of First Corinthians. Saint Alphonsus takes these words and gives a simple view of the Catholic way of life and an excellent introduction into the spiritual life. This is excerpted from his work, The Holy Eucharist, which has been excerpted from The Complete Works of Saint Alphonsus, which was compiled and translated by Father Eugene Grimm. (1835-1891)
Centuries before the Catechism of the Catholic Church was published in 1992, encouraged by the Council of Trent, a catechism was prepared called the Roman Catechism or the Catechism of the Council of Trent. It was prepared for use by Pastors to instruct their flocks in the Catholic Faith. Educated lay people should know their faith at this level, therefore this catechism is recommended for study by all Catholics. It is laid out in a far different manner than the 1992 Catechism of the Catholic Church, which is laid out in a similar manner to Henry Denzinger's Enchiridion Symbolorum, which is in translation at the Sources of Catholic Dogma.
Liberalism has crept into the highest places in the Catholic Church. This work exposes this heresy quite well. In 1886 there appeared in Spain a little work under the title El Liberalismo es Pecado, "Liberalism Is a Sin," by Don Felix Sarda y Salvany, a priest of Barcelona and editor of a journal called La Revista Popular. The book excited considerable commotion. It was vigorously assailed by the Liberals. A Spanish Bishop of a Liberal turn instigated an answer to Dr. Sarda's work by way of another Spanish priest. Both books were sent to Rome, praying the Sacred Congregation of the Index to put Dr. Sarda's work under the ban.
The Fraters Kitchen
Bacon Wrapped Guacamole Hot Dogs
This is a total summer recipe. Or a total Cinco de Mayo recipe. It is something I cooked up myself for the 4th of July and it was soooo good.
Wrapping a hot dog in bacon is one of those things that you hear about and think “really? Do we really need to be wrapping bacon around hot dogs?” The answer: No, we probably don’t need to. The second half of that answer: But oh my we SO want to.
Bacon wrapped hot dogs are just enough of a change on the original hot dog to make it feel like a whole other meal. The bacon doesn’t get super crispy but it adds a nice smoky crunch to the dogs.
I decided to do a southwestern theme and top our bacon wrapped hot dogs with fresh made guacamole, fresh made pico de gallo and if you want you can add a little crumble of cotija cheese.
Open a bottle of Corona and lime to go with it and you are set!
Bacon Wrapped Guacamole Hot Dogs
BACON WRAPPED HOT DOGS:
4 hot dogs
4 slices bacon
4 hot dog buns
PICO DE GALLO:
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and diced
1/4 medium yellow onion diced (about 1/2 cup)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
salt to taste
2 medium avocados, pit removed
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon lime juice
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Make pico de gallo by combining all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Let set at room temperature until ready to use.
To make guacamole, mash avocados together. Mix in remaining ingredients. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat.
Wrap hot dogs in bacon. The bacon should stick to the hot dog without a toothpick but you can use one if desired.
Cook hot dogs until bacon is cooked and hot dogs are warmed through.
Place hot dogs in buns, top with guacamole, pico de gallo and crumbled cotija cheese.
Dear soul, let us consider for a moment the concept of trust, and how trust relates to our spiritual lives and growth.
I recall a couple of specific and formal lessons from my childhood concerning trust. I say "specific and formal" because they were deliberately planned by the teacher to illustrate and inculcate trust to and within their students. There were, of course, countless general and informal lessons concerning trust that I would encounter just by going about my everyday life. I am sure it's the same for everyone.
Concerning the concept of trust in itself, I remember an illustration that was spoken quite a few times by the leader of a youth group of which I was a member when I was in elementary school. He maintained that trust was an act of a certain faith, even in the lack of immediate evidence. The example he would give is the trust with which a person would flip a light switch: he trusted that the light would go on.
Like all analogies and most illustrations, it is rather imperfect. But it worked to lay a bit of foundation in the minds of the children.
Secondly, I remember from third grade a practical lesson in trust that our teacher, Sister A., attempted - more or less successfully - to teach us children. You have probably done something similar at some time in your life as a "trust test." Quite simply, you stand with your arms out, eyes closed, and allow yourself to fall backward into the waiting arms of your trusted teacher.
It sounds simple enough, and it is. It's simple, but not always easy.
In the short amount of space you have in which to feel yourself falling backward, it seems like you have a million little moments in which your strongest senses of self-preservation scream at you to doubt, to catch yourself, to somehow keep yourself from falling.
And then Sister stops you from falling and you realize you hadn't fallen back more than a few inches.
It's a decent little "trust building" exercise on the one hand, and an even better opportunity for introspection on the other hand. For all the weaknesses of these practical exercises, there does remain a movement within them that should urge the Christian soul to make an evaluation in all honesty of its own activities.
All of this is well and good, of course, but what are the activities of trust for the Christian soul who strives to live the life of grace? Come along and let us examine them. I will try to be exceptionally brief, I promise. And I won't even ask you to fall backwards to do it. (Although I would catch you, I assure you.)
Not long ago, we spoke on the Four H's of the spiritual life: Honesty, Humility, Help, and Hope. Today, let's look at Trust and where it fits in as we become animated by these principles.
We can do no better than to look to the Liturgy of the Church and to hear the very Word proclaimed therein.
Central to the Divine Office of every day is the Psalter. The Church praises God Almighty and simultaneously feeds her children with the wisdom of Psalms. Let us take our lesson from them and see therein the course and cause of Christian Trust.
"O Lord, my God, in thee have I put my trust; save me from all them that persecute me, and deliver me." - Psalm 7:2
For the Christian, it is unto God that trust is due. We see that the Psalmist considers this trust to be prerequisite to calling upon God for salvation.
"But I have trusted in thy mercy. My heart shall rejoice in thy salvation: I will sing to the Lord, who giveth me good things: yea, I will sing to the name of the Lord, the most high." - Psalm 12:6.
Once again, we see that trust comes first. It is the action of the Christian soul in regard to the mercy of God. Through trusting mercy, we are brought to rejoicing in salvation.
And there you have it, dear soul:
Trust is the act by which in which we receive the mercy of God and by which we are delivered unto salvation.
But there is so much more to see, even in just these two verses from the Psalms.
For let us look at them as they are offered according to the Gallican (Vulgate) Psalter of Saint Jerome, as well as in the Old Latin and the Septuagint. I think you will immediately see the importance of trust to the spiritual life.
In the first instance, we read, "O Lord, my God, in thee have I put my trust." In Saint Jerome's rendering of this verse, we read, "Domine Deus meus in te speravi," which could literally be translated as "Lord God mine, in Thee I have hoped."
While that's a bit linguistically awkward, the point is made:
Trust is nothing more than hope in action. It is here the proper action of that fourth H we were talking about!
Just as faith without works is dead, so likewise hope without trust is dead. The trust-less hope is not accomplishing that which it is given to do.
Saint Jerome's reading here of "speravi" is exactly the same as we find in the Old Latin, "Domine Deus meus in te speravi," and precisely parallel to that which we read in the Septuagint, "Κύριε ὁ Θεός μου, ἐπὶ σοὶ ἤλπισα."
And what of the other verse we have considered?
Where in the Douay version we read, "But I have trusted in thy mercy," in the Vulgate we read, "Ego autem in misericordia tua confido." Here we can see that what has been rendered as "trust" in English is different from what we saw previously in Latin. Where before we had the verb "sperare," meaning "to hope," here we encounter "confidere," which is often (and rightly) simply translated in English as "to trust." So with Saint Jerome we read, "But I in thy mercy trust."
But we can take that a step further in the Latin (and English). Quite simply to have confidence (con-fidence) is to have "faith-with." It is to work "with faith." It is to go forward "with faith."
It is not really possible to coin a proper verb in English to express all of the shades of meaning, but at the base of it, it's really quite simple. It is that which you do "with faith."
And here you see how that fourth H of the spiritual life is drawn both beyond itself and beyond yourself. Starting from true honesty, progressing in humility, seeking the help of grace, and living in hope is the basis upon which one works in and with faith.
It is hope that does this, as it works with faith.
Now, the Old Latin retains the verb "sperare," but this time has it in the present tense: "Ego autem in misericordia tua spero." "But I hope in thy mercy." This should remind you that hope is an on-going virtue. It must continue always to act, through trust.
The Septuagint likewise retains the verb "ἐλπίζειν", which also signifies "to hope," but retains the past tense (as we likewise see in the Douay Psalter,) reminding us that the work of hope continues to build upon itself; that trust builds trust. "Εγώ δε επί τω ελέει σου ήλπισα." "But I have hoped on thy mercy."
So, dear soul, now the question is put to you: Where is your trust? It is it the active hope within you? Or have you allowed it to become shallow?
Start again, as always, with honesty. Make an honest assessment of your own trust, or lack thereof.
If we are being truly honest, we all will acknowledge that we do not act in trust as often, as well, and as selflessly as we should. We all too often will make excuse for ourselves, or even drown out the call of God's mercy with the noise of the world, the noise of busy-ness, or even the noise of our own ego.
Humility is the answer.
Humility allows us to beg that help we need, both supernatural and natural help. There is no shame in bearing one another's burden! That is the will of God.
Thus we can find true hope: A hope in action. And the action of hope is trust!
God calls you to trust today. Make an inventory of yourself and of what you need to make your hope alive so that you can fully act in trust. Remember always that there is abundant mercy for those who trust in the Lord. He calls you now. Answer with joy!
Pray for Frater Francis Dominic as he teaches Catechism through the web site. We are also working on a plan to bring classes to the people in their homes around the United States. We are working on a new Website where people can listen or watch Catechism lessons, take tests, and get a certificate of completion. It will take a long time to finish it but you can see the work that we are doing and we will keep you updated on when it is completed. Check it out all of the construction going on over there at Traditional Catechism.com
Frater Francis Dominic will be ordained Deacon August 1st In Centralia Illinois. We have several priest, and Bishops, as well as his own family members and friends that will be there for the celebration!
- Frater Francis has some material needs of his own. He is in need of two new tires before making his trip to his ordination. Also He is in need of three black dress pants as well as two Cassocks.
We are looking to buy land for a Church and a House of Prayer. Please pray with us in finding the right place. and if you feel led, to donate money for this project you can donate by Paypal, or make check or money orders out to Vatican in Exile.
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