Showing posts from June, 2013

Sales of the Pope's Pectoral Cross model increase in Rome

June 30, 2013. ( This Roman bookshop is popular not just because it's on the Via della Conciliazione street, but also because it sells the same pectoral cross model, Pope Francis wears.  The store has been selling it since 2004, but most recently, since it became a symbol of Pope Francis' simple style, its sales have increased. FR. LUCIANO ORSI Ancora Bookstore (Rome)  “This cross, is the same model the Pope wears. We've had it for several years now, since 2004 more or less. But before we would sell one or maybe two a year, because it wasn't very popular back then. But in the last three months, we've sold many more.” The design is simple. The silver cross has an image of the Good Shepherd and a dove representing the Holy Spirit. FR. LUCIANO ORSI Ancora Bookstore (Rome) “The Good Shepherd is a well known figure in the Catholic tradition. It represents the Lord Himself who cares for His people. He looks after His flock, and brings back tho

A Conference in Rome on Understanding and Professing the Liturgy in the 21st Century

June 30, 2013. ( What's the best way to study, understand and appreciate the Liturgy? What's the most efficient way to profess it in the 21st century? These were some of the questions that were analyzed during a four day 'Sacred Liturgy' Symposium organized by French Bishop, Dominique Rey, in Rome. MSGR. DOMINIQUE REY Bishop of Fréjus-Toulon (France) “The center, the source, the summit of Christian life, as said by the Council, is the Liturgy. Because in the Liturgy we have the presence of God.” Msgr. Dominique Rey says that when it comes to understanding the Gospel, there's a lot more than meets the eye. As the Church promotes the New Evangelization, it's essential understand how to profess the Liturgy and its relevance, in the modern world. In fact, about a month after being elected, the Pope talked about irreplaceable role of the Liturgy during an audience with the Biblical Commission. POPE FRANCIS April 12, 2013 “That is why th

Pope to impose Pallium on metropolitan archbishops

June 28, 2013. ( During the Feast Day of St. Peter and St. Paul, the Church celebrates the pallium ceremony. That's when Pope Francis will impose a wool made garment on metropolitan archbishops from all over the world, who were named in the past year. On the list are 35 archbishops. Among them are the heads of major dioceses like Lisbon, in Portugal, San Francisco, Delhi, India, Monterrey, Mexico. There's also the archbishop of Buenos Aires, Mario Aurelio Poli, who takes over the post held by Cardinal Bergoglio, before being elected Pope. The ceremony will be held in St. Peter's Basilica on June 29th.  At this point, 34 of the 35 archbishops will attend the ceremony. The Archbishop of Hue, Vietnam, will not be able to travel to Rome.

The pallium: Three archbishops reflect

Archbishops from three American cities discuss the meaning of receiving the pallium and the challenges that face them as leaders of the church.

Grammy nominee's music is ministry

Catholic recording artist Matt Maher shows how he mixes his faith with his music. Read more.

Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom

Hundreds of people in the Archdiocese of Denver attended a prayer rally for religious freedom on June 22, standing up for the right to serve God in their public and private lives. Read the full story.

Meet Pope Francis

Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, apostles

Sts. Peter and Paul are the co-founders of the Church - the solid rock on which it was founded. St. Peter  Peter's original name was Simon. He was a fisherman and the brother of Saint Andrew, the apostle who led him to Christ. As an apostle of Christ, Simon was renamed "Peter" (in Hebrew Kephas) or "rock" by Jesus to indicate that Peter would be the rock-like foundation on which the Church would be built. Peter's house often became the scene of miracles, since Jesus would stay there whenever He was teaching in that locality. Together with his brothers John and Andrew, Peter belonged to the first of Jesus' disciples. After the Ascension, Peter took the leading role that Christ had assigned to him and became the first Pope. He served as the first Bishop of Rome and died there as a martyr in 64 a.d. crucified with his head downward, as he was not worthy to die in the same manner as Christ. Peter is the author of two letters, the first encyclica

Kansas bishops ask faithful not to lose hope and to pray in response to U.S. Supreme Court decisions

The leaders of the four dioceses in Kansas issued a statement Thursday, June 27, in response to the U.S. Supreme Court decisions on the DOMA and Proposition 8. Here is their statement: Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City in Kansas, Bishop John Brungardt of Dodge City, Bishop Edward Weisenburger of Salina, and Monsignor Robert Hemberger, Diocesan Administrator of Wichita, issued the following statement today in response to the United States Supreme Court decisions in United States v. Windsor and Hollingsworth v. Perry: In one of two significant rulings today the United States Supreme Court struck down the section of the federal Defense of Marriage Act that defined marriage as between one man and one woman for purposes of federal law and federal benefits. There had been a concern that the justices would strike down all state laws and constitutional amendments defining marriage as between one man and one woman but fortunately this did not come to pass.  A great many of the Sta

Papal Tweet of the Day

TWITTER @PONTIFEX 06/28/2013 Jesus didn’t save us with an idea. He humbled himself and became a man. The Word became Flesh.

Pope's Prayer Intentions for July

Vatican City, 28 June 2013 (VIS) - The Pope's general prayer intention for July is: “ That World Youth Day in Brazil may encourage all young Christians to become disciples and missionaries of the Gospel.” His mission intention is: “That throughout Asia doors may open to messengers of the Gospel.”

Pope Francis: Have patience, trust in God's mysterious ways

June 28, 2013. ( During his daily morning Mass at the Vatican, Pope Francis talked about patience. He called on Christians to trust God and His mysterious ways. Sometimes God intervenes in one's life immediately, he explained, but other times, the virtue of patience is needed. POPE FRANCIS “The Lord takes his time. But even He, in this relationship with us, has a lot of patience. We too have to show patience: He has it! He waits for us! And He waits for us until the end of our life! Think of the good thief, right at the end, at the very end, he acknowledged God. The Lord walks with us, but often does not reveal Himself, as in the case of the disciples of Emmaus. The Lord is involved in our lives - that's for sure! - But often we do not see this. This calls for our patience. But the Lord who walks with us, also has a lot of patience with us.'” Before ending, he highlighted that just like the Lord is patient, Christians too, have to show patience wit

Audrey Assad, A unique style of Christian music

June 28, 2013. ( Meet song writer and singer Audrey Assad. She was born 30 years ago in the U.S, but her father is Syrian. Her passion for music began when she was still a little girl. In fact, by the age of two,  she was already playing around with the piano. Her first album, titled 'The House You're Bulding' topped the Billboard charts for Christian music. In 2010, Amazon's digital music department named it best album of the year in its genre. Her style is a unique mix of jazz and folk. It's been described as having a  harmonious flow, which she says is because of her mellow voice and piano skills. Her latest album, released in 2010 and titled 'Heart', was very successful. Audrey Assad is now a benchmark singer in the US. Currently, she is working on her latest CD.

7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 222)

--- 1 --- I have finally decided to join Jen in 7 Quick Takes.  I have no idea of how to do this, but I had no idea of what I was doing when I started blogging almost ten years ago. I just jumped right in. I enjoy doing new things, even if they are a little scary. "Be not afraid"! I can hear John Paul II's powerful voice every time I begin something new and am afraid of making a mistake. I felt the same way when I began work on my second Master's degree (in theology) a couple of years ago and things worked out well, because I applied myself and God helped me through the program. I graduated in December 2012. It was His will, so things worked out as I hoped they would. --- 2 --- Now that Google reader is defunct, I am using Feedly Cloud to read all my favorite blogs. I just started tonight and have had no problems. I am creature of habit, so it was a little difficult to change, but I knew I had to take action. I am still wondering how to get my blog to post a

St. Irenaeus: Bishop of Lyons and Father of the Church

The saint of the day for June 28th is St. Irenaeus (c.130 - c.200), Bishop of Lyons and Father of the Church. Irenaeus was born in Smyrna (modern-day Turkey), although he later settled in Rome. He was well educated and was influenced by men who knew the Apostles, especially St. Polycarp, who had been a pupil of St. John the evangelist.  He became Bishop of Lyons (France) in 178. As bishop, he divided his activities between the duties of a pastor and of a missionary. A prolific writer, he is known for his vigorous defense of the faith against Gnosticism , the prevalent heresy of the time. He was the first great Catholic theologian and his most significant work is Against Heresies ( Adversus Haereses ). For a more detailed biography, go here . Quotes "For this is why the Word became man, and the Son of God became the Son of man: so that man, by entering into communion with the Word and thus receiving divine sonship, might become a son of God." "Baptism gives

Twenty One Years Ago Today....

we were celebrating THIS Thanks be to God for the Sacrament of Matrimony !

Novena to the Mother of God for the Nation for Religious Liberty

Catholics have always turned instinctively for help to the Mother of God in times of need. And so, in 2013 we turn to Our Lady for help. Many of the values that shaped our Country from the beginning seem to be at risk. Pope Francis and the American Bishops have noted the erosion of religious freedom in the United States, the first value guaranteed by the Constitution. This Novena to the Mother of God for the Nation will remind us of some of the central truths of the faith, in particular, the Incarnation, passion, death, resurrection of the Lord and Mary's unique role in our salvation. It will be, in a way, a catechism lesson that challenges us to a deeper conversion to Christ and a more generous life of charity.

How to defend traditional marriage

Tracey Rowland, an Australian philosopher, discusses how the Catholic Church should respond to proponents of same-sex marriage.

Our Lady of Perpetual Help

Today we commemorate Our Lady of Perpetual Help . I have had a long-time devotion to Our Blessed Mother under many titles, but began praying to Our Lady of Perpetual Help early in my childhood and continue to pray for her intercession today. She is such a sweet mother who always asks Jesus to grant me that which will draw me closest to Him. The Icon Our Lady of Perpetual Help is a Byzantine icon from the middle ages that has resided in Rome since the late 1400s. It was brought to Rome near the end of the fifteenth century by a holy merchant, who, dying there, ordered by his will that the picture be exposed in a church for public veneration. It was exposed in the church of San Matteo, Via Merulana, between Saint Mary Major and Saint John Lateran. Crowds flocked to this church, and for nearly three hundred years many graces were obtained through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Eastern Catholics refer to the icon as the "Holy Theotokos of the Passion."

Archbishop: Traditional marriage supports social justice

Related Post:   U.S. Supreme Court and the 'gay marriage rulings: the good, the bad, and the ugly

U.S. Supreme Court and the 'gay marriage rulings: the good, the bad, and the ugly

by Michelle Bauman, assistant editor for Catholic News Agency and EWTN News from CNA blog : This morning, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and dismissed an appeal of California’s Proposition 8 on grounds of standing. But what does this mean? What are the implications of the court decisions? Here’s the good, the bad and the ugly from today’s rulings: The Good: The court did not claim to have discovered a fundamental “right” to marry. If it had done so, it could have imposed a redefinition of marriage on the entire country, forcing widespread recognition of “gay marriage.” Instead, the court chose to issue a more limited ruling, saying in its DOMA decision that the states are free to define marriage as they see fit, but if they choose to recognize same-sex “marriage,” the federal government must acknowledge these “marriages” alongside the marriages of one man and one woman. States are still free to hold a view of marriage as one

Pope's General Audience: Each Christian must contribute in building the Temple of the Church

June 26, 2013. (  During his weekly general audience, the Pope explained the views of the Church, as expressed by the Second Vatican Council. He said the Church can be considered a 'Temple,' where Christians are like 'living stones'  who reveal the beauty of the Christian message. CATECHESIS IN ENGLISH: Speaker: “Dear Brothers and Sisters: In our continuing catechesis on the Creed, today we consider the Church as God’s temple.  The great temple of Solomon in Jerusalem, a place of prayer and encounter with the Lord, was a prefigurement of the Church.  Jesus Christ, the incarnate Son who dwelt among us, is himself the definitive and living temple where we encounter God’s presence in our midst.   Christ makes us, the members of his mystical body, “living stones” for the construction of a “holy temple in the Lord” (Eph 2:21), in which we exercise our baptismal priesthood by offering spiritual sacrifices.   The Holy Spirit, in the variety of his gif

"The Miracle of Father Kapaun" Book and DVD Giveaway

Emil Kapaun—priest, soldier and Korean War hero—is a rare man. He has been awarded the Medal of Honor, the nation's highest military award, and is also being considered by the Vatican for canonization as a saint. He is an inspirational figure, especially as we celebrate the Fortnight for Freedom. In honor of the Fortnight for Freedom,  I am giving away both the  book and the  DVD that chronicle his heroic life, "The Miracle of Father Kapaun," during the "Fortnight for Freedom" and leading up to Independence Day. You can enter to win either the DVD or the book. To qualify for the drawing, just send me an email with your full name and mailing address at jean.heimann(at)gmail(dot)com and you are entered! The deadline is July 4, 2013.

St. Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer

The saint of the day for June 26th is St. Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer (1902-1975), Spanish priest and founder of Opus Dei . You can read his biography HERE  and find his writings HERE . A Few of My Favorite Quotes: "You go to pray; to become a bonfire, a living flame, giving light and heat." "The world thrives on lies even twenty centuries after the Truth came among men.—We have to tell the truth! This is precisely what we have to do as children of God. When men get used to proclaiming and hearing the truth, there will be more understanding in this world of ours." "We are children of God, bearers of the only flame that can light up the paths of the earth for souls, of the only brightness which can never be darkened, dimmed or overshadowed. The Lord uses us as torches, to make that light shine out. Much depends on us; if we respond many people will remain in darkness no longer, but will walk instead along paths that lead to eternal life."

Pope Francis: "We're not Christians by chance"

June 25, 2013. ( During his daily morning Mass at the Vatican, Pope Francis explained that God never leaves His people alone and that no-one is ever a Christian by chance. As an example, the Pope talked a reading from the Book of Genesis, where Abram discusses division on earth. POPE FRANCIS “God accompanies us, God calls us by name, God promises us we will have a line of heirs. This is a type of 'given' that comes with being a Christian. It is not a coincidence, it's a calling - a calling that keeps us going. Being a Christian is a calling of love, friendship, a calling to become a child of God, brother of Jesus, to become fruitful in the transmission of this calling to others, to become instruments of this call. There are so many problems, so many problems, there are difficult times, Jesus had many of His own! But always with that confidence: ‘The Lord has called me. The Lord is with me. The Lord has made me a promise'” The Pope also added that

Benedict XVI wants to spend the summer at the Vatican

June 25, 2013. ( Benedict XVI is “relaxed. He has a good memory and his eyes are bright and cheerful.” These were the words of father Stephan Otto Horn, president of the Ratzinger Alumni Association who visited the Pope Emeritus early in June. According to his former student, Benedict XVI wants to spend his summer at the Vatican. He also suggested that his successor, Pope Francis spend a few days at Castel Gandolfo, to bear the summer heat.  Pope Francis has offered Benedict XVI, full access to the Pope's summer residence in the town of Castel Gandolfo. The Latin American Pope is scheduled to visit the town of Castel Gandolfo on July 14th, where he will lead the Angelus prayer. According to Stephan Horn, Benedict XVI thinks Pope Francis should celebrate the Feast of the Assumption on August 15th, where a Mass is traditionally celebrated in the nearby parish. Benedict XVI has parted ways with public life and is not scheduled to take part in any of the usual

St.William of Vercelli

Image Source The saint of the day for June 24th is St. William of Vercelli. William was born to noble and wealthy parents in Vercelli, Italy in 1085. He lost his father and mother in his infancy and was raised by a relative. At age fifteen, he made a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela, Spain. When he returned, he became a hermit in Naples and lived there on an uninhabited mountain in solitude. However, he became famous after he worked a miracle, curing a blind man. His desire to live a contemplative life and to focus on God was interrupted; consequently, he moved to another mountain. On this mountain, he built a beautiful church in honor of Our Lady. His holiness attracted  many followers and, in 1119, he established the Congregation of Monte Vergine, or Mount of the Virgin. These sons of Our Lady lived in great poverty. Some of the monks began to complain that the rule was too strict and the lifestyle was too austere. They desired better food and a less strenuous schedule. To

Best Books for Catholic Women 2013

Here are my top five picks (in no special order): 1. Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious: Celebrating the Gift of Catholic Womanhood   by Pat Gohn 2 .  Catholic Mom’s Café: 5-Minute Retreats for Every Day of the Year by Donna Marie Cooper O'Boyle 3.   Rooted in Love: Our Calling as Catholic Women by Donna Marie Cooper O'Boyle 4.  StangeGods: Unmasking the Idols in Everyday Life by Elizabeth Scalia 5. The Ear of the Heart: An Actress' Journey from Hollywood to Holy Vows by Dolores Hart All of the above books were published within the past year. Which are your top picks of books published within the past year? Please include links to reviews so we can learn more about them.

Pope Francis: Christians cannot be anti-Semitic, we share common roots!

June 24, 2013. ( While speaking to a delegation of the International Jewish Committee on Interreligious Consultations, Pope Francis underlined the importance of the strong bond that unites Christian and Jews. After addressing the audience as 'elder brothers and sisters', the Pope reminded that the Second Vatican Council and its declaration 'Nostra Aetate' were in the forefront of promoting cooperation between the two religions. POPE FRANCIS “In that Council text, the Church recognizes that “the beginnings of its faith and election are to be found in the patriarchs, Moses and prophets”. And, with regard to the Jews, the Council recalls the teaching of Saint Paul, who wrote “the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.” Pope Francis also told the assembly that he was personally acquainted with many Jewish leading figures. The Pope said that he has enjoyed talking and exchanging views with Jewish people since his days as Archbishop of Buenos Aires

Religious freedom advocates light up


Stop the HHS Mandate


Quote of the Day: Archbishop Chaput on the New Evangelization

Blessed Pope John Paul II saw the outline of our new “new world” more than 30 years ago.  And following his lead, the Church has been calling Catholics to the work of a “new evangelization” ever since.  But there’s a natural human tendency to attach magic powers to slogans, which then replace serious thought and effort — as if saying the slogan, or talking about it, actually makes mission work happen.  In practice, the words “new evangelization” are overused and underthought.  Unless we reconfigure our lives to understanding and acting on it, the “new evangelization” is just another pious intention – well meaning, but ultimately infertile. ~ Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M.CAP., excerpted from his speech at the Serra International Convention, June 22, 2013, Mallorca, Spain.

Pope Francis on St. Thérèse of Lisieux


Solemnity of the Birth of St. John the Baptist

Today, June 24th is the Solemnity of the Birth of St. John the Baptist. Jesus called John the greatest of all those who had preceded him: “I tell you, among those born of women, no one is greater than John....” But John would have agreed completely with what Jesus added: “[Y]et the least in the kingdom of God is greater than he” (Luke 7:28). John spent his time in the desert, an ascetic. He began to announce the coming of the Kingdom, and to call everyone to a fundamental reformation of life. His purpose was to prepare the way for Jesus. His Baptism, he said, was for repentance. But One would come who would baptize with the Holy Spirit and fire. John is not worthy even to carry his sandals. His attitude toward Jesus was: “He must increase; I must decrease” (John 3:30). John was humbled to find among the crowd of sinners who came to be baptized the one whom he already knew to be the Messiah. “I need to be baptized by you” (Matthew 3:14b). But Jesus insisted, “Allow it now,

Sts.Thomas More and John Fisher

Today is the feast of Sts.Thomas More, martyr and John Fisher, bishop and martyr. St. Thomas More was born in London, England and was Chancellor of King Henry VIII. He was a devoted, loving husband and father and a dedicated public servant. St. John Fisher studied Theology in Cambridge and became Bishop of Rochester. He and his friend St. Thomas More gave up their lives in testimony to defend Church unity and the indissolubility of the sacrament of Matrimony. Both men had well-formed consciences and were willing to die for the Truth. St. Thomas More Thomas More was born in 1478, son of the lawyer and judge John More and his wife Agnes. He received a classical education from the age of six, and at age 13 became the protege of Archbishop John Morton, who also served an important civic role as the Lord Chancellor. Although Thomas never joined the clergy, he would eventually come to assume the position of Lord Chancellor himself. More received a well-rounded college education

More from Fr. Barron on Man of Steel

Original Post: Fr. Barron comments on Man of Steel.

Pope Francis: Our hearts tire if we only seek material wealth

June 21, 2013. ( During his daily morning Mass at the Vatican, Pope Francis explained that God gave people 'a restless heart' that is always seeking treasures. But, he said it's easy to get lured in by 'fake treasures' that don't bring true happiness. POPE FRANCIS “The Lord has made us restless to seek Him, to find Him, to grow. But if the treasure is a one that is not close to the Lord, that is not from the Lord. Our hearts becomes restless for things that simply don’t work, for these treasures . . . So many people, even we ourselves, are restless . . . To have this, to arrive at this in the end, our heart is tired, it is never filled. If it gets tired, it becomes sluggish, it becomes a heart without love. The weariness of the heart. Let’s think about that. What do I have? A tired heart, that only wants to settle itself, three, four things, a good bank account, this or that thing.  This restlessness of the heart is always there. It's i

St. Aloysius Gonzaga

by Jean M. Heimann Today's saint, Aloysius Gonzaga (1568-1591), was the firstborn in a highly wealthy and influential Italian noble family.  His father was a famous mercenary soldier.  Aloysius assumed adult responsibilities at an early age. He began his training as a soldier and courtier at the age of four and, when he was only eight, served in the court of Grand Duke Francesco I de’Medici. While serving in the court, he studied in Florence, where he received an excellent classical education. In Florence, Saint Aloysius became ill with kidney disease, and in the process of recovery spent time in spiritual reading and prayer.  At the age of nine Gonzaga made a private vow of chastity. At the age of 12, he returned home to his father’s castle, where he met St. Charles Cardinal Borromeo, who gave him his first Holy Communion.  Shortly thereafter, Aloysius began to teach catechism to young boys. Much to the displeasure and anger of his father, Aloysius stated his intention to

Archbishop Lori Discusses Fortnight for Freedom 2013


Cardinal Burke: Families Must Proclaim the Gospel of Life

Created on Thursday, 20 June 2013 18:46  Written by Stefano Gennarini, J.D. ROME, June 21 ( C-FAM ) The family is the central way of proclaiming the "Gospel of Life," a top Vatican official said this week during a weekend-long celebration of Blessed John Paul II's letter by that name. In the family “children witness the Gospel of life in the relationship of their parents with one another and in the relationship of the parents with them,” Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke said in remarks delivered at a conference held during the commemorative event. Burke, Prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, said “A new reading of the Encyclical Letter must be at the core of the observance of the Year of Faith." Dr. Douglas Sylva chaired the conference, which was sponsored by C-FAM, publisher of the Friday Fax, in conjunction with the Pontifical Council on The New Evangelization. Sylva is Chairman of C-FAM's board of directors. Pope Francis celebrated Holy Mass commemorating S

Fr. Barron comments on Man of Steel


Pope: "We cannot pray to our Father, if we have enemies in our hearts"

June 20, 2013. ( The 'Our Father' prayer was the focus of the Pope's homily during his daily Mass at the Vatican. Pope Francis said that prayer is not some kind of magic spell. He explained that it's about putting one's trust in God. He alone, said the Pope, understands one's needs. POPE FRANCIS “No, you cannot pray with enemies in your heart, with brothers and enemies in your heart, you cannot pray. This is difficult, yes, it is difficult, not easy. 'Father, I cannot say Father, I cannot'. It’s true, I understand. 'I cannot say our, because he did this to me and this ...' I cannot! 'They must go to hell, right? I will have nothing to do with them'. It’s true, it is not easy. But Jesus has promised us the Holy Spirit: it is He who teaches us, from within, from the heart, how to say 'Father' and how to say 'our'. Today we ask the Holy Spirit to teach us to say 'Father' and to be able to say 

St. Alban, patron of converts

The saint of the day for June 20 is St. Alban , the first Christian martyr in Britain during the early 4th century. He is the patron saint of converts and torture victims. Even though he was not a man of faith, St. Alban was very hospitable and compassionate. As a soldier, he sheltered a persecuted priest, Amphibalus, during a time that Christians were being put to death in Britain. The priest struck St. Alban with his faith and piety, as well as his dedication to prayer. Alban soon converted to Christianity. In an effort to help the priest escape, he switched clothes with him. But Alban was caught and ordered to renounce his faith. St. Alban refused to worship idols, and when asked to state his name, answered “My name is Alban, and I worship the only true and living God, who created all things.” When he refused, he was to be tortured and beheaded. The person first selected to execute Alban heard his testimony and converted on the spot. After refusing to kill Alban, he was e

A Heart of Mercy


New Evangelization, Secularization, and the the Church

A moral theologian discusses the impact that a secularized society may have on the future of the church and the need for a New Evangelization.

New Fashion Trend: The Modest 50s Look is Back

Image Source Image Source Full hoop skirts and saddle shoes are back! Surprise- it's coming out of Europe!

John Paul II's Second Miracle Approved?

The Italian media is reporting that a panel of theologians has approved a second miracle attributed to Blessed John Paul II. USCA News reports: A panel of theologians has approved a miracle attributed to Blessed John Paul II, according to the Italian news service ANSA. If the report is accurate, the approval could pave the way for the canonization of John Paul II this year—possibly in October, in time for the 35th anniversary of his election to the papacy. ANSA reports that the theologians appointed by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to study a reported miracle have given their approval. Earlier this year a panel of doctors found that the cure was medically inexplicable. The Vatican has not confirmed the approval by either panel, and the nature of the reported miracle has not been disclosed. If the miracle has been approved by both doctors and theologians, the only remaining steps would be the formal approval of the cardinals who make up the Congregation for the C

Pope calls for Christian Unity during general audience

June 19, 2013. ( With Rome's intense summer heat, Pope Francis made his way to St. Peter's Square, blessing children along the way. He even gave a baseball cap to a child to protect him from the high temperatures. During his catechesis, Pope Francis described the Church as the Body of Christ. POPE FRANCIS “If the head is separated from the body, a person cannot survive. It's the same for the Church. We must always stay intensely connected to Jesus.” The Pope added that the Church is not an NGO, or a cultural or political institution. He explained that the Church is a living Body, Jesus is the head who nurtures and guides it along the way. He also called for Christian unity. POPE FRANCIS “We Catholics should pray together, but we should also pray with other Christians. We must pray so that God may grant us all unity. Unity! Through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, he said,  that unity is possible. But to start of, one must first look for uni

Pope modifies Mass: 'St. Joseph' added to Eucharistic prayers

June 19, 2013. ( The Pope has approved a new addition to the Latin Rite Mass. The name of St. Joseph, will be included after the usual prayer to the Virgin Mary. The change in the text was also approved by the Congregation for Divine Worship. The modification itself was in the works under the Pontificate of Benedict XVI. Now, Pope Francis confirmed the decision. Up to now, the only reference to St. Joseph was in the so-called Roman Canon, and was introduced by the blessed  John XXIII during the Second Vatican Council. Currently, the decree has only been published in Latin. So after the reference to the Virgin Mary, the phrase reads, 'cum beáto Ioseph, eius Sponso,'  which translates to St. Joseph, her husband. But the Vatican is working on various translations in other languages. Since the change is simple, priests are allowed to put it into practice immediately. NEW VERSION IN ENGLISH II: that with the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, with Ble

Exquisite Ave Maria

by André Rieu and Mirusia:

Natural law and the new evangelization

Francis Beckwith, an American Catholic philosopher, discusses how natural law arguments can be used to defend human life.

Saint Romuald, Abbot

Today is the optional memorial of Saint Romuald, abbot and founder of the Camaldolese Benedictines-- one of the Italian branches of the Benedictines. He was born around 950 in Ravenna, Italy of a noble family and died on June 19, 1027 in Val-di-Castro, Italy. Horrified, after his father killed a relative in a duel, at which he was forced to be present, Romuald retired to the Benedictine monastery of St. Apollinare, near Ravenna, where he became abbot from 996 to 999. For almost thirty years he traveled about Italy, reforming monasteries and establishing hermitages. Romuald's own father eventually became a monk in one of his monasteries; when he later wavered in his vows, his son's encouragement helped him remain faithful. The last fourteen years of Romuald's life were spent in seclusion at Mount Sitria, Bifolco, and Val di Castro. St. Romuald died in 1027, and was canonized in 1595. Like all the saints, Romuald fought a lifelong battle against the assaults of devil

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