The Guardian Angel: Sr. Briege & the Eucharist from The Curate’s Diary, by Fr. T. Doyle

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 24th, 2015

Gregt 1WOW!!! Holy Spirit, please open the eyes and ears of all my family and friends, and myself more fully. Lord wake us up, we look at a bad day in so many different ways, but have not known bad, as we see the hearts of those so much less fortunate as far as our worldly eyes. Lord give us hearts to match their love and faith in you.

As you read the following Eucharistic story, consider the older lady that carried the burned baby for a long distance to get to the Mass, place yourself with the faithful mother with the downs syndrome child, stand if you can in the shoes of the parents that live by the garbage dump and have their children right there and can glorify Jesus in those conditions; consider wearing the shoes of a Sister or a Priest who lives our their faith day in and day out. There are so many at risk who rely on faith that the Lord will use as a vessel to bring Him to you. Let us love His Mother as He loved her, and let us be formed by her to become another Jesus as much as it can be humanly possible with the Lord’s assistance. Mary loved Jesus more than all the angels and saints together, so Mary please help us to love Jesus as much as is possible. Let us never sadden Jesus in letting HIM see us receive the Eucharist unworthily. Increase our love for others so much that they are drawn to you. I love you Jesus, I love you Mary. In HIS service through Mary, GregoryMary

Canon Lawyer Cardinal Raymond in the book *Divine Love Made Flesh* describes the awesome gift that Jesus gave us at the Last Supper before He died in the privilege of receiving Him in Communion. Cardinal Burke promises to defend and maintain respect for the Eucharist regarding the decisions during the upcoming synod on marriage and the family.  Of the book, Cardinal Burke encourages, *Please pass this along to your friends and family. Praise Be To Jesus and Mary for these two servants of God*

We must not take this great privilege for granted! St. Faustina in her diary describes that she witnessed Jesus react in great sorrow and pain to witness anyone receiving Communion unworthily with mortal sin on their soul.

Sister Briege McKenna’s own wonderful experiences in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament are evident in the events described in the email that Art Leinen forwarded to us.

NunThe following is a touching story of the Power of the Eucharist…..A very powerful sharing by Fr T. Doyle.  Alleluia!

*Sr. Briege & the Eucharist from The Curate’s Diary, by Fr. T. Doyle:*

Today Sister Briege McKenna’s healing ministry is totally centered on the Eucharist.  During a special retreat for sisters a few years ago, she shared a remarkable story of how Jesus led her to this Eucharistic centering.

Sr. McKenna writes, “I had a big problem. After my own dramatic healing and then receiving the gift of healing many others, I was worried because so many people, were coming to me.  In less than one year, so many headings were taking place, that the people wanted to make a saint out of me, even asking for relics…cloth from an old habit, my hair trimmings, etc. I was astounded and disturbed by it… and then there was the way that some people wanted to touch me, as if they would be healed or graced by doing so.”

(Editors note:  Acts 19:11-12 states, “ And God did extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, so that handkerchiefs or aprons were carried away from his body to the sick, and diseases left them and the evil spirits came out of them.”)

“I loved the people, but I did not like what was happening. There was a danger that, instead of directing people to the Lord or to the Mass, they had come just to see me.  I certainly knew that, of myself, I had absolutely no power, and that it was Jesus Who was doing the healing; that I was only His chosen instrument. However, even to be chosen by Him was itself an extraordinary gift. Pride could step in, and one could begin to believe that one is better than other people.  In a certain way, I felt that I was becoming a celebrity, and I knew that it was neither true, nor good for my soul.

nun 1I went on a pilgrimage to Lourdes and begged Our Lady for help. I asked Her, to please keep me in the heart of the Church, and to show me how to integrate this healing ministry into the life of the Church.  I remember sitting in front of the Blessed Sacrament in Exposition one day, just praying to Our Lady. Then I went down to the Grotto.  A pilgrimage was taking place of mentally handicapped children, and as I watched them being assisted from Mass, I remember thinking and knowing that Mary will show me the way.”

After this pilgrimage,  Sr. Briege came back to America, and three weeks later she got a phone call from Fr. Rick Thomas. He had a special ministry across the border in Mexico. He said to her, “I would love to have you come and visit the poor at the garbage dump and pray with them. You can help with the healings. Their need is so great.”

She explained that given her existing commitments, she had only an evening and a morning available, and he responded, “That’s fine. God doesn’t need a long time. On your way back from California , stop off and stay overnight.”

She arrived in El Paso to be met by this very colorful charismatic priest, a man who witnessed to the faith in everything he did. On the one hand, he was normally wearing a Texan hat and Texan boots. On the other hand, “Alleluia” was his favorite word, which he regularly repeated with gusto.

boy-with-dog-and-donkeyWhen Sr. Briege arrived, he started jumping up and down with delight, and introduced her to his dog and his donkey. Sr. Briege did not know what to expect next!

That evening, they drove directly out to the dump, and he told her, “They do not have a clue as to who you are, and it does not matter. When the time comes, I will just get you to say a prayer with them, and God will do the rest.” When they arrived at the dump, Sr. Briege witnessed scenes she will never forget.

On the Texan border with Mexico, there is the Rio Grande, the river which Mexicans try to cross to get into the U.S.  They are driven back by border police. These are poor Mexicans, who squat and live at the garbage dump, and their children are born there.  As Fr. Rick showed Sr. Briege around, she was horrified by the sheer squalor.  She had given retreats in South America, but she had never seen anything like this.

When Fr. Rick told her that he was going to celebrate Mass there for them the next morning, she was somewhat taken aback, wondering how Mass could be celebrated with any dignity in such an environment.  What would the people know or understand? The children were running around wild like little animals. She was horrified at thinking that, in that place with those people; they will not be able to comprehend what happens during Mass.  Anyway, the next morning, she, a small group of young Mexican Americans, and Fr. Rick set out for the dump.  He brought a little table and all the Mass requirements.

When they arrived, already up to 1000 people were there, and more were coming! She remembered standing there looking over this crowd of poor miserable people.  Clearly visible in the distance, not even fifteen minutes away, were beautiful homes and a big Mexican Seminary.

But these people had no church, and indeed, they had nothing.  Fr. Rick had taken it upon himself to go out there and to begin evangelizing and ministering to them.  He was trying to break down the hatred through speaking of God’s love, and then seeking to get them into groups to do works toward that end.

The Mass started, and although Sr. Briege has been a daily communicant since she was 12 years old, she said this Mass had changed her life!

Nun 2Before the Mass began, she watched an old woman coming in, carrying a bundle on her shoulder.  At first, Sr. Briege thought that it was some form of a gift for Fr. Rick.  But, when the old woman opened up the cloth, in it there was a little child, completely burned from head to foot, filthy, dirty, and screaming! The woman looked at Fr. Rick, and with great compassion, she said, “Please bless him. I found him smoldering when I was coming across the mountain.” She had picked him up, put him into this cloth, and carried him to Fr. Rick. The child was practically skinless! Fr. Rick looked at the little boy, got Sr. Briege to join with him in a prayer, and then suggested that he be placed under the table on which the Mass was to be celebrated.

Sr. Briege related that once the Mass had begun, she felt and saw the presence of Jesus.  When Fr. Rick said, “Let us sing the Gloria,” praises to God came forth from the tops of their voices.  She had come from across the border from comfort.  She had everything that she needed, but they had nothing, and yet they praised God loudly and wholeheartedly.  She heard the Lord speaking to her, saying, “If my people do not praise Me, the stones will cry out!”

Here were the poorest of the poor and they were radiant with praise to God. When the consecration came, she had her head down. Then she looked up and saw that Fr. Rick had one of those large hosts.  For a moment, everybody was prostrate on the ground.  It was then that she had the most beautiful image of Jesus with His two hands out.  He was smiling, and within herself, she heard the words of the Gospel, “Come to Me all you who are weary, and I will refresh you.” Just as she was seeing that, the people lifted up their faces and started shouting, “Viva Cristo Rei” ….long live Christ the king! At that moment, she truly knew that Jesus was in the Host… that it is not just a piece of bread, but truly Jesus, Himself. For these people, in the midst of their poverty, they had the King of Kings. They clapped, cheered, and cried, “Viva Cristo Rei” …long live Christ the king!

nun 3She found herself weeping as she saw the great faith of these people, and she asked herself, “Is my faith as strong as theirs, that I may always realize that a Consecrated Host is really Jesus’

Mass ended and the burned little boy, who had been placed under the Mass table, had long since stopped crying.  Sr. Briege went to look for him, and she was overwhelmed when she saw him.  He had crawled out from under the table, was totally healed, and was playing in the sand!

She went over to the old woman, and said to her, “What happened to him?” With hindsight, she realized that it was a stupid question. The old woman looked at Sr. Briege, and said, “What do you mean what happened? Didn’t Jesus come?” As Fr. Rick put his hands over the bread and wine and called upon the Holy Spirit, as the bread and wine were changed, the little boy was changed. He was given new skin!

Not only that, before the Mass, Sr. Briege  saw a mother bringing in a Down Syndrome baby. The mother was a young girl, and she had this beautiful little baby in her arms, but it had all the appearances of having Down Syndrome.  She and Fr. Rick prayed over the child.  At the end of the Mass, the child’s mother came running up to her, saying, “Look at my baby!” Her baby was now perfect.

There were many more healings.  Sr. Briege had spent eight hours with the people, and she did not remember which ones she prayed with, but it was certainly not all of those who were healed. It was as if God had put on a display of miracles. Fr. Rick usually did not pray with the people.  All he did was celebrate the Mass.

elevation_of_host 220Sr. Briege spent eight hours on the mountain dump, and she went back to El Paso so overwhelmed that she could not sleep.  Finally, at three a.m., she heard Jesus tell her, “Get up and pray.”  She knelt at the side of the bed, and the Lord said, “You asked My Mother to help you, and to show and teach you.  She brought you here.  People come and seek signs and wonders. They go looking for healers and for something to help them, and they will go to anybody! Yet, I am on the altars of the world and in the tabernacles of the world, and they pass Me by.  I brought you here because I have a mission for you.  I want you to go to the world and speak on the power of the Eucharist.  As you begin to lead people to the Eucharist, I will show you what I can do…” and, He is doing just that!

This occurred in 1972. Since that time, Sr. Briege has been traveling all over the world to speak about the power of the Eucharist.  In Ireland, as in many parts of the world, they have a history of men and women who knew that the Mass was worth living and dying for.

What a great reminder and call for all of us to go out into the highways and the byways to bring people in.  The King wants His house full….

“And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; yea, and on my menservants and my maidservants in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.   And I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth beneath…” Acts 2:17-19

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The Catholic Defender: The Walking Dead Joins The Politically Correct Crowd

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 23rd, 2015

Gays WDLast night, I watched the latest Walking Dead episode as I have enjoyed watching the show, probably because from the beginning, you’re taken into this post apocalyptic world. As a story line, it is interesting to keep up with the characters.

They have now just began their fifth Season and they promise to keep the adventure coming full steam ahead. They recently lost two major players from their group adding to the danger and the suspense that are portrayed in this fictional story.

So, the show, the Walking Dead is clearly keeping a strong following on television. It was rated as one of the top five shows on television according to the Peoples Choice Awards, 2/22/2015.

Hollywood for a long time has been working to undercut the family, by promoting a very liberal agenda. Movies with a strong family message will not go very far regardless of the following it might achieve.

sniperThe movie, American Sniper, according to Forbes Magazine, earned over $400,000,000 since January making it one of the highest earning for a nominated movie for best picture, of all time. Of course it did not win any of the six nominations. That’s Hollywood for you which reminded me how the Awards treated Mel Gibson’s, The Passion of Christ, which clearly did well at the box office.

But most of the Awards featured the liberal agenda. Meryl Streep, a highly recognized actress, is quoted to say, “It’s time for all the women in America, and all the men that love women and all the gay people and all the people of colour that we’ve all fought for, to fight for us now.”

Folks, what do you think this kind of talk is really directing support too? Obviously the Gay Agenda, Abortion, an acceptance of lifestyles not compatible with faith in God. This is purely Secularism flaunting itself before the world.

And last night, the Walking Dead officially joined in the confusion, I will call it the illusion. I know the show itself is fictional about the walking dead, but now they are really the walking dead.

Andrew-Lincoln-on-The-Walking-Dead_event_mainAndrew Lincoln, who plays the role of Rick Grimes on the Walking Dead, “Andrew Lincoln says the cool thing about the world is that no one gives a crap about Eric and Aaron being gay since it’s okay as long as you have someone to love. He says it’s beautiful.”

The overall sentiment is that the cast accepts the idea of homosexuality, this is taking what is suppose to be fiction and using it as an opportunity to chip away at the traditional family. To chip away against Faith in America.

Melissa Leon, writer for The Daily Beast, asked Ross Marquand, new gay member of the Walking Dead, “Aaron is the first gay man featured on the show and we watched him and Eric together for the first time on Sunday in an intimate reunion scene. What did it mean to you to take on that scene?

It’s been a great deal of responsibility to do it justice with respect not only to our gay fan base, but to the viewers in general. My boyfriend, who’s played by Jordan Woods-Robinson, and I met as often as we could before we shot that scene and tried our best to get to know each other on a personal level. It was one of the most beautiful scenes that I’ve had the pleasure of shooting because it dialed into what I think the theme of the show is.”

AlanThis is the kind of stuff that is polluting the minds and hearts of young people as they get caught up in the lives of these characters.  This is a form of deprogramming Americans changing the culture and our history.  And this is having an affect!

This agenda is being pushed from the media from all fronts. At the beginning of the football season, the St. Louis Rams drafted Michael Sam of Missouri, as a 7th round draft pick and on ESPN, kissed his boyfriend on national TV. There were a lot of criticisms in the media, which the Rams subsequently traded Sam to the Dallas Cowboys as part of their practice squad. Sam has been cut by the Cowboys and it looks like San Francisco might have a place for him…

This shows you that the pro-Gay-Agenda is seeking to get into peoples homes in every facet of American life and culture. Christians are being persecuted if they do not conform to the onslaught against Faith in America.

When you have more young people watching the Walking Dead on Sunday night than watching Sunday Night Football, that is an eye opener.  Consider the sixth episode of its fifth season, the Walking Dead drew a “7.3 rating among the key demo while the New England Patriots’ 42-20 win over the Indianapolis Colts got a 6.2. That’s a 15% spread.”

season-5-InterviewThe United States is still considered to have a majority who believe in God, but the attacks on Religion continues to come out strongly in support of the hedonistic and Pagan practices of long ago. So what is a Christian family to do?

One thing you can do is nothing. Unfortunately, that is exactly what many are doing. Nothing!

The second thing you can do is find other Family things to do, that might not be easy as withdrawal can cause pain.

The third thing you can do is write the producers of the show and let them know what you think. If all the feedback they get is positive, that only strengthens their position.

The Fourth thing would be that if you watch the show, try and find teaching tools to show that the Catholic Faith is not to be compromised and explain when they show a scene that is controversial what should be done.

We definitely need to promote the movies and shows that support family values. To find alternatives to what is tearing our Country down. We need to get back to prayer, faith, and patriotism.

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The Catholic Defender Given A Temptation

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 22nd, 2015

jesus-tempted-in-the-desert“The Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert, and he remained in the desert for forty days, tempted by Satan. He was among wild beasts, and the angels ministered to him. After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God: “This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

Lent is a very important season as we reflect on our lives. I recall Jesus “was lead by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil.”

What was the main temptations? “If you are the Son of God, command that these stones become loaves of bread.” “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down.” “All these I shall give to you, if you will prostate yourself and worship me.”

These temptations recorded in the Gospel of Matthew 4:3-11 tell us a lot about the devil.

He is crafty and cunning. He uses the environment to lure his victims. For many, he uses drugs, wild sex, homosexuality, and many other things.

Sometimes, he can be simply appealing to the mind. “C’mom Defender, everybody does it?”

Consider the following temptation that was attempted on me recently. The following was written to me:

temptation“Defender, I have a challenge for you, I know you wont accept and if you do, you wont be honest about it. The challenge is this, don’t go to church for one month. Don’t be Catholic for one month. Don’t say any Catholic prayers, no rosaries, no hail Marys, no saints. Don’t do anything Catholic for one month. Instead, just pray directly to God. Seek him out, ask for his guidance. Fast and pray, pray only to God and in Jesus name only. Ask for truth. Do this with a whole heart and you will find, after one month of not being Catholic, that you will never want to return to the RCC. You will discover what Sandor, Sola, Girl, myself and the rest of us have been trying to show you for nearly 2 years!!!” “What have you to lose, Defender?”

I couldn’t believe this when I first read this? “What have I to lose?”, Well, my soul would be important to me. I recall 1 John 2:18-20, “Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that the anti-christ was coming, so now many anti-christs have appeared. Thus we know this is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not really of our number; if they had been, they would have remained with us. Their desertion shows that none of them was of our number.” So, I will not forsake my Lord for one second, one minute, let alone one month.

Then this was sent to me: “Try it Defender, I pray this always that you convert to real Christianity.”

They want me to convert to a new Christianity created and developed by men. Sorry friends, I can’t help but see the devil behind the curtain.

devil_in_disguise_by_nomnom09-d5wtp98Then the following really tells me what is going on: “I have to say I agree with Joe. Defender my friend – what do you have to lose? I did the same test (and I was a Roman Catholic Practitioner the whole 9 yards) and the Lord answered more of my prayers when I let go of all religions and used him (God) alone as my crutch (at least this was/is my experience). But this isn’t about answering prayers (I feel like many of us use God for his rewards only which is not the Prime Directives purpose). And if you think you can’t do it because you honestly think the Catholic Church is the only way, you need not fear because the Lord would highly appreciate you searching for him the extra mile, not to mention it is our duty to test all things in correlation to Gods Will (and/or using Gods word for reproof in righteousness in all we do). If we didn’t test all things & only practiced what we were fed, this surely would acknowledge no real zeal for the Lord but rather conformity for the sake of conforming! I urge you to at least try it, we will be their for you every step of the way! Either way I will always appreciate what you have done for North America (I know Joe does), and we will always love you man!”

I feel the need to add a comment here that the Lord has answered countless prayers for me. Healing, conversion, miracles, and much much more. Jesus calls me to receive  him at Mass in the Eucharist. This is the way in which to renew the Covenant. The Lord would leave the 99 to find the one gone astray. May these individuals find their true home in the Catholic Church!

resist the devil (1)St. Paul warns, “I am amazed that you are so quickly forsaking the one who called you by the grace of Christ for a different gospel not that there is another. But there are some who are disturbing you and wish to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel other than the one that we preached to you, let that one be accursed! As we have said before, and now I say again, if anyone preaches to you a gospel other than the one that you received, let that one be accursed!”

With this temptation, I want to send back my response with a challenge of my own, “My brethren, if any one among you wanders from the truth and some one brings him back, let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins. (James 19-20)”  My encouragement is that you guys take another good look at the Catholic Faith, if you do their would be a great party in heaven.  (Luke 15:7-10)

The gospel given to us has to be nearly 2,000 years old, founded by Christ and commissioned by Christ to go to all the nations teaching them the gospel. This is the Catholic Faith, to deny the Pope, the bishops, the clergy, and all the teachings handed down from Christ to His Apostles would be a serious sin. Just like the Lord resisted the devil in the desert, we must resist him when he comes challenging you. Lord, Jesus, give us the strength to resist the devil as you did so long ago.

The Devil will certainly want you to miss Mass so anytime you feel that you are getting weak, trust in the Lord with all your heart. This is a great prayer to recall during such times:

archangel-michael-defeating-satan-1635“Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.  Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.  May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host - by the Divine Power of God - cast into hell, satan and all the evil spirits, who roam throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.”

The Devil will appear in many different forms, even as an Angel of Light. Sometimes people can appear to be sincere, but unfortunately, they may be sincerely wrong. The only sure thing that we have is what Jesus Himself has laid out for us. Anything else would be a rabbit trail, an illusion, a false way.

The Lord is Our Shephard, and there should be nothing else we should want. All that we have is a gift from Him.

During this Season of Lent, let us continue to grow in our understanding of the Great gifts we have been given. Let us be faithful to Him and renew the Covenant with Him at each Mass!

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The Catholic Defender: This Lent Calls For Prayer Like Never Before

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 21st, 2015

Martyrs 1Over the past year we have seen a terrible persecution of Christians and other minorities in the Middle East. Some of the oldest historic Christian foundations in the Middle East have been uprooted to the point of extermination. Thousands forced to leave their homeland. Churches and historic monuments destroyed while the world, and in particular, the Obama Administration, largely is silent.

The horrible stories coming out of Iraq and Syria just touches on how evil the Church has had to endure for their faith in Jesus Christ. Outside of the United States, where would religious freedom have the appearance of being protected?

Only in predominant Christian countries do we see the idea of religious freedom and tolerance, but because of the Secularization of those societies, the threat of losing their religious foundations is very real.

Right now, despite the attack on Christians and Jews by Islamic Terrorists, the Obama Administration can’t acknowledge the Terrorists as Islamic, nor do they want to acknowledge the Christian Martyrs as Christian.

The recent beheading of 21 Christians who were beheaded in Libya Pope Francis addressed Church Leaders from Scotland, the land of William Wallace, “Today I read about the execution of those twenty-one or twenty-two Coptic Christians…, Their only words were: ‘Jesus, help me!’ They were killed simply because they were Christians.” Pope Francis continues, “The blood of our Christian brothers and sisters is a witness that cries out to be heard.”

Pope FrancisCompare this to the Obama Administration, “The United States condemns the despicable and cowardly murder of twenty-one Egyptian citizens in Libya by ISIL-affiliated terrorists.” This seems to be the policy of this White House to remain silent as to the religious nature that Islamic Terrorists are killing Christians, Jews, and other Muslim minorites taking place in the Middle East and Nigeria.

There is no question that the Church in the Middle East is under assault to proportions only compared with the happenings during World War II, perhaps the horror that was in Kibeho, Rwanda. But, silently, while our attention is directed to the Middle East, here in the United States, we have become dormant.

The Democratic Strategy to try and divide Christians in the United States over the Feinstein Torture report was but a ruse to divide Christians who were waking up to the attack on Faith in America. Over the past 6 years, with the threat of Obamacare, the attack on religious freedom began. Because of the historic foundation of America, the Liberal Left have been chopping at religious freedom for decades, infiltrating the Democratic Party, the Judicial System, our colleges and higher places of learning. Even infiltrating our Churches.

While our attention has been misdirected, lets take a look at what has been happening in America? Our Southern border has been open for invasion by Islamic Terrorist, so much so that the Government has recognized that ISIL was known to be in 49 of our 50 States. What are we doing about it? Never before has their been a push for Islam in America as President Obama has placed members of the Muslim Brotherhood throughout his Administration.

Barronelle-StutzmanThe Islamic Terrorists seeks to use America’s tolerance for religious freedom against itself as they continue to standardize Sharia Law in America. But consider what has been happening that seem to be an alliance between the Islamic Terrorists and the White House.

Recently, it was reported that a Washington Grandmother, Barronelle Stutzman who is seventy years old may lose her home and life savings. How did she become an enemy of the State that her livelihood and freedom would be so threatened? Because she refused to sell flowers to support a gay wedding. The attack on Christians are coming from this White House like never before.

Remember when a District Court Judge (Alan M. Malott)  from New Mexico, ordered a Christian photographer (Elaine and Jon Huguenin of Elane Photography) to pay $6,600 for refusing to take pictures of a Sodomite (Gay) Marriage ceremony?

The Attacks on religious freedom in America is becoming more evident, recently in Colorado, a Christian Baker lost a court decision when Gay Activists wanted to force the baker to make a “wedding cake” for the “gay marriage”? The court sited that a Discrimination Act trumped the Baker’s Constitutional freedom of religion rights. This ruling happened despite the fact that in Colorado, Gay Marriage is still illegal?

I remember in 1993, when then President Bill Clinton wanted to allow gays in the Military. The opposition was so strong that Clinton tabled the whole idea for several months before coming out with his “Don’t ask, Don’t tell” policy. The United States public school system began a systematic effort to change American core values by pushing a tolerance towards homosexuality. So much so that frictions developed as the liberal positions held an intolerant view towards Christians.

military_chaplain_dont_ask_getty-e1357241006671Retired Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin of the Family Research Council—one of the leaders of a new religious liberty coalition for the military observed, “A chaplain has been censored for expressing his beliefs about the role of faith in the lives of service members… Why do we have chaplains if they aren’t allowed to fulfill that purpose?” The various Secular associations have been seeking to abandon the Chaplain core on the Military.

Consider that on July 29, 1775, Congress authorizes a chaplain for each regiment and appoints Colonel William Tudor as the first Judge Advocate. This is the birthday of the Chaplain Corps and the Judge Advocate General Corps.

Christianity is under attack by the Current White House threatening the very fabric of the United States Constitution. Again, Judicial activists are taking away the voice of the people; in Arizona, Christians are being forced to act as photographers at gay weddings, in Colorado Christians are being forced to bake cakes for gay weddings, in New York home owners who offer their place for weddings are being forced to allow gay weddings all from judicial activism. The freedom of religion is being trumped by those who want to transform America by fiat.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, we have not talked about the IRS, White House scandals, or many other social issues affecting the American family.

This last November, America voted to restore common sense back into our government, let’s not take our eyes off the ball. Lets take this opportunity of Lent to refresh our resolve to stand up for our Faith by practicing it. What is taking place in the Middle East we definitely do not want to turn a blinds eye towards, yet, we really need to keep watch what is happening right here as well.

Prayer for AmericaDear Lord, we are now in the holy season of Lent. We begin to realize anew that these are the days of salvation, these are the acceptable days. We know that we are all sinners. We know that in many things we have all offended Your infinite majesty. We know that sin destroys Your life in us as a drought withers the leaves and chokes the life from the land, leaving an arid, dusty desert. Help us now, Lord, in our feeble attempts to make up for past sin. Bless our efforts with the rich blessing of Your grace. Make us realize ever more our need of penance and of mortification. Help us to see, in our ordinary difficulties and duties, in the trials and temptations of every day, the best opportunity of making up for past infidelities. Every day we are so often reminded in field and wood, in sky and stream, of Your own boundless generosity to us. Help us to realize that You are never outdone in generosity, and that the least thing we do for You will be rewarded, full measure, pressed down, shaken together, and flowing over. Then we shall see, in our own souls, how the desert can blossom, and the dry and wasted land can bring forth the rich, useful fruit that was expected of it from the beginning. Amen.

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*Best of DTB #282* The Catholic Defender: SPSE vs Mike Gendron

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 20th, 2015

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“Proclaiming the Gospel with Mike Gendron: “Nine Roman Catholics came from all over Texas to be “evangelized” in the church in Dallas where Mike Gendron is a member. They came because they heard that Mike and 8 other members of his church were evangelizing Catholics at their church on Christmas Eve. The nine Catholics were all part of a nationwide ministry called St. Paul Street Evangelization which spreads the Catholic faith and hands out rosaries. They called in all their “big guns” from Houston, Austin and Tyler. Although we quickly found out their motives were not really to be evangelized, Mike was able to give a complete Gospel presentation before we opened the meeting for questions.”

spseWow, Mike Gendron thought of us Catholics who wanted to respond to his attack upon St. Elizabeth Ann Seton as “big guns” was a great honor! The Radio show that we recently responded to Mike Gendron really speaks volumes.

From the outset, in that “open forum” where Catholic Christians were given the opportunity to respond only if we did not utilize the whole word of God. Mike Gendron made it clear that we were not to bring up the Church Fathers, history, Tradition in context. It is very obvious as to why! They have no church fathers, history, or tradition. Their response using the bible only through the lenses of Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Grace Life church provides a very Calvinistic (reformed) view.

So, at the end of the day, we will be responsible and accountable to Our Lord Jesus Christ in our response to your open or private attacks on Catholics. What you did at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton unprovoked and unwelcomed was a disgrace. There is no comparison from what St. Paul did in going to the Jews from what you did at the Catholic Church. Likewise, there is no comparison between the response of the Jews from our rightful response against you.

We are to contend for the Faith of the holy ones, against those “who pervert the grace of our God into licentiousness and who deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ (Jude 3-4).

vatican 1Acts 9:31 “Then the church throughout all* Judea, Galilee and Samaria enjoyed a time of peace. It was strengthened; and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it grew in numbers, living in the fear of the Lord. “

*In the original Greek, it is:

Acts 9:31 ἡ μεν ουν εκκλησια καθ᾽ ὁλης της ιουδαιας και γαλιλαιας και σαμαρειας ειχεν ειρηνην οικοδομουμενη και πορευομενη τω φοβω του κυριου, και τη παρακλησει του ἁγιου πνευματος επληθυνοντο.

The term in bold commonly translated as ‘church throughout all’ is in Greek ‘”εκκλησια καθ᾽ ὁλης”—pronounced “Ekklesia Kath olos” or the Church Universal or some might say The Catholic Church, since Kath olos is the same term used by St Ignatius for the Church in his letter. So is it valid to say that the Catholic Church is indeed identified as Christ’s Church in the 9th chapter of Acts?

IraqIsaiah 66:18-21 states, “Thus says the Lord: I know their works and their thoughts, and I come to gather nations of every language; they shall come and see my glory. I will set a sign among them; from them I will send fugitives to the nations: to Tarshish, Put and Lud, Mosoch, Tubal and Javan, to the distant coastlands that have never heard of my fame, or seen my glory; and they shall proclaim my glory among the nations.”

So, as Catholics, we must be able to withstand the fiery darts of Gendren who is on the warpath. St. Peter said, “Be sober and vigilant. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, steadfast in faith, knowing that your fellow believers throughout the world undergo the same sufferings.”

Notice that the devil is attacking the Church throughout the world? This is the same Church that St. Paul wrote to the Roman Church, “First, I give thanks to my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is heralded throughout the world.” In other words, the devil is attacking it, but he will not win! So Mike Gendron really is Dr. Jekyll Mr Christian! He is not who he seems. He clearly uses religion to deceive.

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The Catholic Defender: 394 A.D. Daily Mass

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 19th, 2015

full armor of God 1I remember last year before the Wild Card Playoff time and I was really in a festive mood, after celebrating Christmas and New Years I was ready for some football being totally renewed and refreshed.

I was reminded that the Mass is a million times more important and just as I can get excited about a football game, I should be even more excited about going to Mass.  You can look at going to Mass as “I Get too” as opposed to “I Got too” go.

I am so thankful that I get to go to Mass that I have long since dropped the I got to go complex.

What a joy it is to be able to defend the Church of the Living God, the Catholic Church founded by Jesus Christ Himself.

Jesus clearly gives His Church His authority. That is really the heart of defending the Catholic Faith.

It is standing up for that rightful authority. Catholic Apologetics in some ways is like an athletic competition. This does take endurance!

massThe date 394 A.D. being attributed to the beginning of daily Mass ordinarily means nothing in and of itself.

However, because some anti-Catholics want to make this an issue trying to disprove the authority of the Catholic Church, I wanted to take a closer look at this accusation.

The purpose in all of this is to attempt to give the Mass a pagan foundation.

The Mass historically goes back to the Lord’s last supper that ended the Passover observance and launched the New Covenant.

Jesus established the new and everlasting Covenant at the Last Supper and from there commissioned the Apostles to do this in memory of Him.

That has been handed down through His Catholic Church. The Eucharist became central in the Christian life.

justinSt. Justin Martyr wrote of the Eucharist, “And this food is called among us Eucharist, of which no one is allowed to partake but the man who believes that the things which we teach are true, and who has been washed with the washing that is for the remission of sins, and unto regeneration, and who is so living as Christ has enjoined. For not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Saviour, having been made flesh by the Word of God, had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word, and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished, is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh. For the apostles, in the memoirs composed by them, which are called Gospels, have thus delivered unto us what was enjoined upon them; that Jesus took bread, and when He had given thanks, said, “This do ye in remembrance of Me, this is My body;” and that, after the same manner, having taken the cup and given thanks, He said, “This is My blood;” and gave it to them alone. Which the wicked devils have imitated in the mysteries of Mithras, commanding the same thing to be done. For, that bread and a cup of water are placed with certain incantations in the mystic rites of one who is being initiated, you either know or can learn.”

CommunionThe Mass is central to the Christian because of the graces God offers to each person.

It is clear from the Bible that the people “devoted themselves to the teaching of the apostles and to the communal life, to the breaking of the Bread and to the prayers.” (Acts 2:42)

When looking at the history of the daily Mass, it is important to take a look at the Lord’s prayer that says, “Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those to trespass against us.”

This part of the prayer has always been understood to mean a Eucharistic spiritual gift as much as a temporal gift.

Jesus is the bread of life and He offers himself to us daily, not just once a week on Sunday.

From the Catholic Catechism of the Church, it states:

communion 12770 In the Eucharistic liturgy the Lord’s Prayer appears as the prayer of the whole Church and there reveals its full meaning and efficacy. Placed between the anaphora (the Eucharistic prayer) and the communion, the Lord’s Prayer sums up on the one hand all the petitions and intercessions expressed in the movement of the epiclesis and, on the other, knocks at the door of the Banquet of the kingdom which sacramental communion anticipates.

2771 In the Eucharist, the Lord’s Prayer also reveals the eschatological character of its petitions. It is the proper prayer of “the end-time,” the time of salvation that began with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and will be fulfilled with the Lord’s return. The petitions addressed to our Father, as distinct from the prayers of the old covenant, rely on the mystery of salvation already accomplished, once for all, in Christ crucified and risen.

canon lawThe current code of Canon Law states, “The Code of Canon Law states, “Remembering that the work of redemption is continually accomplished in the mystery of the Eucharistic sacrifice, priests are to celebrate frequently; indeed daily celebration is strongly recommended, since even if the faithful cannot be present, it is the act of Christ and the Church in which priests fulfill their principal function.” (CIC 904)

The Catholic Church has always placed the Mass as essential for the life of the faithful. The Prophet Daniel has an interesting prophecy (Daniel 8:11-12) that states, “It boasted even against the prince of the host from whom it removed the daily sacrifice, and whose sanctuary it cast down, as well as the host, while sin replaced the daily sacrifice. It cast truth to the ground, and was succeeding in its undertaking”.

danielDaniel was prophesying that the daily sacrifice was going to be taken away from the Jews and that the host (Jesus Christ) would be cast down. The Priesthood of Christ offers a perpetual sacrifice that is made of human hands for the people of God. This daily sacrifice of the Mass replaced the sacrifices of the Old Testament. The Priesthood of Christ replaced the Priesthood of Levi as the Old Testament was replaced by the establishment of the New Testament. The Fall of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. fulfills the prophecy of Daniel.

The Sunday obligation replaced the Saturday Sabbath, but this does not end the daily sacrifice that is offered. Malachi 1:11 – “For from the rising of the sun, even to its setting, my name is great among the nations; And everywhere they bring sacrifice to my name, and a pure offering; For great is my name among the nations, says the Lord of hosts”. This is a prophecy of a pure offering that will be offered in every place from the rising of the sun to its setting. Thus, there will be only one sacrifice, but it will be offered in many places around the world. This prophecy is fulfilled only by the Catholic Church in the Masses around the world, where the sacrifice of Christ which transcends time and space is offered for our salvation.

mass 1Another thing to notice about Malachi’s prophecy, the implication here is that this pure offering would be a daily offering, “For from the rising of the sun, even to it’s setting, my name is great among the nations” is an every day occurrence.

The sun does not rise only once a week nor does it only set once a week. Not unless your living in Alaska or someplace where you have the sun up for a month! The Catholic Church perfectly fulfills this prophecy.

There is so much to talk about the importance of the Mass, but for this particular study, what is the importance of the 394 A.D. date presented by the Christian Assemblies International? Here is what they are saying: “Notice: These dates are in many cases approximate. Many of these heresies had been current in the Church years before, but only when they were officially adopted by a Church council and proclaimed by the pope as dogma of faith, did they become binding on Catholics. And doctrine to be true must conform to the Word of God. “To the law and to the testimony; if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” (Isaiah 8:20) At the Reformation in the 16th Century these heresies were repudiated as having no part in the Religion of Jesus as taught in the New Testament.

keysSo according to the Christian Assemblies International, daily Mass is a “heresy”? From the teaching of the bible, it is plain that there is a daily sacrifice offered, there is a pure offering! Jesus Himself taught us to ask for this “daily bread” always. Something else I believe needs to be reminded here concerning the authority of the Church.

Jesus said to St. Peter, “I will give to you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loosed on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” (Matthew 16:19)

Luke 10:16, Jesus said, “Whoever listens to you listens to me. Whoever rejects you rejects me. And whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me”. This means that if the Catholic Church says it is OK for a parish to have a bible study during the week, it is most certainly OK for all!

If the Catholic Church accepts having a daily Mass, it is OK to have daily Mass for all! To be honest again, the 394 A.D. date is being introduced not for the sake of truth, but to attempt to tie Catholic practice with Constantine and their building of a case for paganism. In fact, daily Mass is not fostered in paganism, but grounded based from our Jewish roots.

decisionWho am I going to listen to about heresy, the Church that Jesus founded, the Catholic Church, or a group established in 1973 who is making the accusations? For me this is an easy deduction.

To be honest, none of the non-Catholic groups were present before the 16th century. What developments we have seen in 2,000 years of faith means nothing to the teaching itself. In the early Church absolution was given to the repentant Christian after confessing to the entire community.

Today, you confess your sins in a confessional, it is the same sacrament, it is the same authority, it is the priest who gives absolution that really matters. Personally, I prefer the confessional than to bear all for all!
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The Guardian Angel: Eucharistic Miracle of Daroca, Spain, 1239

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 18th, 2015

armor-of-god-girlAs in many times throughout history the Eucharistic Miracle of Daroca is a great example of the love God has for His children when they are in times of battles against evil. God has given us a gift to know, love, and serve Him, do not set idle, there are souls that could be with Jesus for eternity because of your efforts, no matter how small you may see them in your own eyes.

God is offering the people of our time a powerful and effective way to become great Saints, and it’s not because we’re so good. Rather, it’s because our times are so perilous, and God wants His Divine Mercy to triumph through the Eucharist and Mary.

Please pray for these upcoming events recognizing that nothing is more important than souls and that the Holy Spirit will work through the willing vessels that are making these events possible and for the presenters that the Holy Spirit will do the talking and bring souls to God. Donald and I will be in Oak Grove, Kentucky to do a mission on the 15, 16, and 17 of March.

Also, I will be doing a Marian Catechist Retreat for 30 days in March, and that the pre-scheduled days in Kentucky will enhance that experience rather than take away from it. Also, pray for the Marian Conference in Poplar Bluff on the 10 & 11 of April.

CD and GregMany of us will be doing a Divine Mercy Novena starting on Good Friday and finishing the day after the Conference, please join us. We will also open up our first Marian Conference in the Kansas City/St. Joseph Diocese on the 19 & 20 of June, please pray also for the success of this one to bring souls to the Triune God for eternity.

We will then have our 4th Annual Marian Conference in Springfield, MO on the 9 & 10 of October. Your prayers are the most important thing to give blessings, please stay in touch.

May Jesus reign, no matter how much it costs me! “He must increase, I must decrease.” In HIS service through Mary, GregoryMary

Eucharistic Miracle of Daroca, Spain, 1239

The Eucharistic miracle of Daroca was verified shortly before one of the numerous battles sustained by the Spanish against the Moors. The Christian commanders asked the priest in the field to celebrate Mass, but a few minutes after the consecration, an improvised enemy attack obliged the priest to suspend the Mass and hide the consecrated Hosts amid the sacred linens of the celebration. The Spanish left the battle victorious and the commanders asked the priest to communicate the Hosts previously consecrated. However, they were found completely covered in Blood. Even today, it is possible to venerate the Blood-stained linens.

el_cid21In 1239, the Christian cities of Daroca, Teruel and Calatayud (in Aragon) allied themselves to reconquer the walls of the castle of Chio Luchente. Before the first battle, the chaplain, Don Mateo Martínez of Daroca, celebrated the Holy Mass, during which he consecrated six Hosts designated for Communion for the six captains who led the troops: Don Jiménez Pérez, Don Fernando Sánchez, Don Pedro, Don Raimundo, Don Guillermo and Don Simone Carroz.

An improvised attack of the enemy obliged the chaplain to immediately suspend the Mass, and coil the six consecrated Hosts in the corporal and to hide them under a rock. The enemy troops had been forced back and the commanders begged the priest to permit them to receive Holy Communion in thanksgiving for the obtained victory. Don Mateo brought them to the place where he had hidden the corporal and they found the Hosts drenched in Blood.

The commanders interpreted this event as a great sign of predilection on the part of God and of good auspices. They received Communion and tied the Blood-stained corporal to a spear to make a banner. In this way, they brought the banner into battle against the castle walls and reconquered the Castle of Chio, obtaining a miraculous victory.

el_cid13This triumph was attributed to the Eucharistic miracle. The six commanders went to all the different regions of Spain and each of them began to maintain that the corporal must go into his own city. This began an open discussion. Three times, the city of Daroca was chosen to be the custodial place of the miracle. They arrived at a compromise. They decided to place the corporal on the back of a mule to be left to freely wander about. The city where the mule would stop would be the place chosen by the Divine Will to be custodian of the corporal. The mule traveled for 12 days, walking about 200 miles, until exhausted. It collapsed in front of the Church of Saint Mark in Daroca.

Afterwards, a church dedicated to Our Lady was constructed along with a precious reliquary where, even today, it is possible to venerate the Bloodstained corporal.

We are living in a time when their is much doubt, there is a great threat that is crashing down on the Western world. We are called to hold the line, our Faith needs to continue to grow. May the Catholic Church, which is the only hope for the world, bear the shining witness that is Christ that will affect many souls for Christ.

The Radio show can be heard here:  Eucharistic Miracle of Daroca, Spain, 1239

Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore you profoundly. I offer you the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference by which he is offended. And, through the infinite merits of his Most Sacred Heart, and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. I beg of You the conversion of poor sinners.

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The Catholic Defender: Did President George Washington Die A Catholic?

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 16th, 2015

washington 3Today, President’s Day, was actually and originally celebrated as George Washington’s birthday, and in recent times the celebration grew to celebrate the office of the President, not just the “Father of our Country”.

I want to re-post this article because I think it is important that America should turn to God as the way to Go.

During the time of President George Washington, it was not popular for a strong Protestant to become a Catholic.

That was frowned upon especially by the upper class elites at the time.

How could anyone fall prey to the Church of Rome? The Catholic Faith was seen as the “Whore of Babylon” by most Protestants during the time of President Washington.

Granted, most of the Protestants at the time were Calvinist, influenced by the Puritans, so the anti-Catholic rhetoric was central.

There are very small groups today that continue that tradition, but by and large, most of the rhetoric has died down.

washngton 4Whenever someone did convert to the Catholic Faith, there would be weeping and wailing happening in the quarters of those who had died in the clutches of the Scarlet Woman of Rome, this was what the Negroes did because that was what they were taught.

The Negro slaves, who had been influenced with Baptist anti-Catholic bigotry, passed on the story that “Master George had been seduced by the scarlet woman of Rome”. he was secretly one of the largest contributors, giving more than even Bishop Carroll, to the building of St. Augustine’s church in Philadelphia; he very often attended Mass; and he often told his troops that if they did not refrain from abusing the Holy Name of Jesus they would surely lose the war.

I have heard in the past that President George Washington had become a Catholic on his death bed, but that is a hard pill for Protestants to handle.

Surely, the Father of our Country would not have turned himself over to the clutches of Romanism before he died.

washington 5Even today, Protestants tend to shriek at the notion of Protestants becoming Catholic. Christian Music writer and singer, Rich Mullins still have former associates who refuse to recognize Rich Mullins conversion to the Catholic Faith. That is a hard pill to swallow for them.

Talk with anyone of the many Protestant Ministers who have become Catholic, they can tell you some of the difficulties with converting to the Catholic Faith.

So, it is not a surprise that Protestants today ignore the truths of great American Patriots like George Washington being a Catholic. After all, he lead this Nation from it’s infancy as a Protestant Nation. That was the intent of the Protestants at the time, to make this a Protestant Nation.

July 29, 1775 Congress authorizes a chaplain for each regiment and that was important because at the time, the chaplains were of a Christian source. It was definitely not what it is today when even Satanists have chaplains. It was Christian based for the vast majority of our history.

Washington 1President Washington is remembered for being a “deist” which means, “it is the belief that reason and observation of the natural world are sufficient to determine the existence of a Creator, accompanied with the rejection of revelation and authority as a source of religious knowledge.”

Most Christians would agree with half of that definition, Romans 1:19-20 states, “For what can be known about God is evident to them, because God made it evident to them. Ever since the creation of the world, his invisible attributes of eternal power and divinity have been able to be understood and perceived in what he has made.”

With that being said, both Catholics and Protestants teach that the bible gives us divine revelation. Catholics believe in the Authority of the Church and Protestants believe in sola-scriptura, or bible alone. What separates Catholics and Protestants primarily is the issue of authority.

It is also clear that President Washington was also a member of the Masons, something forbidden by Catholics. This might be the strongest source rejecting the idea of President Washington converting to the Catholic Faith.

President George Washington said: “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports… And let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion… reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”  “It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible.”

washingtonIt becomes clear that the main witness of President Washington’s deathbed conversion come from slaves, from Negro slaves. That would be an easy reason for polite white elitists to discount any information leading to such a conversion especially to the Catholic Faith.

Something that should be added here is that few if any of the slaves tending President Washington were Catholic, they had no personal reason to make this up.

Can we use that same standard today and continue to discount these slaves as credible witnesses? According to local tradition going back to George Washington, there developed a connection between the Maryland Province Jesuit Fathers and the Negro slaves. The fact the Jesuits might be involved here probably is another strong reason some discredit Washington’s conversion. Anti-Catholics have a deep hatred towards the Jesuits.

When President Washington was laying down on his deathbed, he called for Father Leonard Neale, S.J. who traveled from St. Mary’s Mission to Mount Vernon crossing the Piscatawney river. After about four hours at the Washington plantation, Father Neale sent a sealed packet to Rome.

washington 6The Negro Slave, Juba, was known to be President Washington’s personal aid, he states that Washington began making the sign of the cross before his prayers. This was noted by all the slaves before meals. That is a Catholic Tradition certainly Calvinists would not tolerate, not even today.

Lieutenants Stephen Moylan and John Fitsgerald also notes that President Washington was making the sign of the cross before his prayers.

In England, November 5 was an anti-Catholic holiday known as “Guy Fawkes” Day. In America, it was called “Pope’s Day” in which the Protestants would burn an effigy of the Pope much like how Muslims in the Middle East burns the American flag today. It was definitely not a loving prayer for the Pope, but a total rejection of it. President Washington ended that celebration and forbade any burning of the Pope’s likeness beginning at Valley Forge.

Washington once said, “We pray that our National Government be a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws.” It is important that we get back to that soon as possible.

washington 7President Washington also told his troops, “You do well to wish to learn… above all the religion of Jesus Christ in our schools”. The religion of Jesus Christ is the Catholic Faith. It is interesting how his language became more open about religion in his latter years.

President Washington was known to be going to Catholic Mass often which is very important for anyone considering converting to the Catholic Faith. Something else I will add for consideration, among his personal effects that was inventoried at Mount Vernon, among his articles was a picture of the Blessed Virgin Mary prominently displayed in his living room and picture of St. John the Apostle.

Did President Washington swim the Tiber River like so many have today? According to tradition, the answer is yes but don’t expect to have anti-Catholics today admit that! They still do not like tradition.

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The Catholic Defender: Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 15th, 2015

Moses before GodThe Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “If someone has on his skin a scab or pustule or blotch which appears to be the sore of leprosy, he shall be brought to Aaron, the priest, or to one of the priests among his descendants. If the man is leprous and unclean, the priest shall declare him unclean by reason of the sore on his head. “The one who bears the sore of leprosy shall keep his garments rent and his head bare, and shall muffle his beard; he shall cry out, ‘Unclean, unclean!’ As long as the sore is on him he shall declare himself unclean, since he is in fact unclean. He shall dwell apart, making his abode outside the camp.” LV 13:1-2, 44-46

“Brothers and sisters, Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God. Avoid giving offense, whether to the Jews or Greeks or the church of God, just as I try to please everyone in every way, not seeking my own benefit but that of the many, that they may be saved. Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.” 1 COR 10:31—11:1

I remember in the early 1970′s, my Mother would tend to her garden scooting from one plant to the next.

It would begin with using a rototiller and a hoe. We would make the straight lines and plant what ever vegetables we were placing in the uprooted dirt.

garden 1We would make a full fledged garden with the plow. Once the seed was planted, we would fill the holes with dirt.

We would keep all the weeds out of it and keep it cleared so that the plants would take root and grow.

The Sun would come out giving the light and the rain would come down and water the plants.

It would always be a lot of work and my Mother was totally dedicated in maintaining it.

She would take great care to ensure her garden was well maintained.

If she needed work, she had my Brother and I to do the things she couldn’t.

What a great gift our Mother was in giving us this great example.

gardenShe had her back broke in two places and she would literally scoot from one plant to the next.

In remembering all this, it reminds me of a spiritual truth that is easily missed.

People question the need of penance challenging me why they need to do penance at all.

It is to fill the holes left as a consequence of sin.

The sin is forgiven in the Confessional, sure enough, the Lord is merciful and true.

But what is left is the hole as a result of the damage due to the sin.

The Lord wants to plant his seed of grace to nurture healing in the wound.

Once the seed is planted, He fills the holes with grace.

garden 2Jesus gives us the means to keep all the weeds out of it and he keeps it cleared so the grace will take root and grow.

We must cooperate with his grace in order for it to grow.

The Son shining His grace upon your wounds allows the wounds to receive the nutrients necessary.

This is the purpose of the Sacraments, especially Confession.

St. John the Baptist said to “Produce good fruit as evidence of your repentance.”

This is the sign of the spiritual healing that takes place with the healing of the wounds, the plugging of the holes.

This is very important, the Church is here to till the dirt, to clean out the weeds and allow the grace to take root and grow. This is the work of the Holy Spirit, to give us the gift of God’s grace found in the Sacraments.

garden 3True healing comes when you keep the wounds clean. As they say, cleanliness is next to Godliness! The struggles of life can deepen the wounds, sure enough. Sin can cause the wounds to bust and boil, become infected.

Do you want to be declared “Clean” bu the Lord? Do you want to keep your soul clean? Then you must make the Confessional a place of habit. To go to Confession is to encounter the Lord and His Mercy.

“Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, whom heaven must receive until the time for establishing all that God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old.” Acts 3:19

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The Catholic Defender: In Prison And You Visited Me

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 13th, 2015

JudgementMatthew 25:31-45 tells us the story when Jesus, “the Son of Man, comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him.”

Something about Jesus throne that first interests me. This is a Chair of judgement, a Chair of authority, a Chair of Mercy to those saved by His grace.

To those who opened the door when Jesus knocked, to those who heard Jesus call, Jesus came into their being through the Eucharistic table of Plenty.

To those who overcame sin and lived the life of grace, Jesus gives the right to join Him on His throne.

We become partakers of the victory of Jesus who will come to judge the living and the dead.

We will sing the victory song of Psalms 118:5, “The joyful shout of deliverance is heard in the tents of the victors: The Lord’s right hand strikes with power; the Lord’s right hand is raised; the Lord’s right hand strikes with power.”

Jesus said, “Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.” Jesus is clear what he is referring to, what we are called to do.

The corporal works of mercy is as follows:

mercy 1To feed the hungry;
To give drink to the thirsty;
To clothe the naked;
To harbour the harbourless;
To visit the sick;
To ransom the captive;
To bury the dead.

The spiritual works of mercy are:

To instruct the ignorant;
To counsel the doubtful;
To admonish sinners;
To bear wrongs patiently;
To forgive offences willingly;
To comfort the afflicted;
To pray for the living and the dead.

divine prisonerToday, I want to take a look at what Jesus said about visiting the prisoner, “in prison and you visited me.” This call from the Lord encompasses a little of all the corporal works of mercy and the spiritual works of mercy all in one. It is here in the prisoner that the Lord can set from from a past of hate to a future of faithfulness, it is here that spiritual need can be filled through the instruction of the Catechist.

The following is a recent letter from one such prisoner that Deepertruth Member, Fred Williams shared with me:

Fred

I am praying this letter finds you well. I am glad that you found out how to work the e-mail site. Always remember through Christ we can do all things. Fred, me and my sisters in Christ welcome you all and can’t wait to see you all on Thursday. The one thing we do know is that you all do have lots of spiritual love for us and that alone we are grateful for.

broken-chainI want to thank you for your prayers. This Catholic Religion is all new to me and I want to learn all I can out of it. There are things I still don’t understand.

I love the Lord with all my heart Fred. I struggle with some things with my family and myself but I keep on praying and believing and trusting in God.

I know by my prayer requests you do realize what’s going on with me and my family.

Fred, my sister and I are not speaking at this point. My heart is broken, but I know God is a heart fixer so I have taken the situation to Him.

I still write and tell her how much I love her, but she is very stubborn. I am asking that you pray for her and me to have a sister relationship.

I would love to have here in my life right now. Fred, I feel so lonely even though I have Machell, she is my best friend, but I am gonna keep on trusting.

(FILES) A file picture taken on July 20,My Sisiter’s name is Sharen. I did get good news my oldest Son has got a job and doing good for himself. I am excited about attending the RCIA class, I want to know the importance of the Saints. Mu church never talked about the Saints alot.

I am excited about ll of this. The Lord is ordering my steps.

I am glad that you write! I don’t get mail often, Fred I want you to have a blessed day. Sincerely yours, Sandra Cunningham.

God bless you in all you do. (Editors note: Names in this letter have been changed to keep individuals identity from being know at request of the sender)

What a wonderful letter of hope from a Prisoner who is not left forgotten, but is very much spiritual alive because of people who care to serve the Lord in serving others.

Hebrews 13:3 states, “Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them; and those who are ill-treated, since you also are in the body.” Let us also remember that Jesus came to set the captives free, that we all have sinned and need His Mercy.

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed…” Luke 4:18

The Apostle Peter in Prison:

Peter in prisonAnd when he had seized him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending after the Passover to bring him out to the people. So Peter was kept in prison; but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church. The very night when Herod was about to bring him out, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries before the door were guarding the prison; and behold, an angel of the Lord appeared, and a light shone in the cell; and he struck Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his hands. And the angel said to him, “Dress yourself and put on your sandals.” And he did so. And he said to him, “Wrap your mantle around you and follow me.” And he went out and followed him; he did not know that what was done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. When they had passed the first and the second guard, they came to the iron gate leading into the city. It opened to them of its own accord, and they went out and passed on through one street; and immediately the angel left him. And Peter came to himself, and said, “Now I am sure that the Lord has sent his angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.”
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