*Best of DTB #309* The Catholic Defender: The Ascension Begins A New Birth

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 29th, 2016

“The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; He has sent me to bring glad tidings to the lowly, to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives and release to the prisoners, To announce a year of favor from the Lord and a day of vindication by our God, to comfort all who mourn; To place on those who mourn in Zion a diadem instead of ashes, To give them oil of gladness in place of mourning, a glorious mantle instead of a listless spirit” (Isaiah 61:1-3).

We see this scripture fulfilled at the baptism of Jesus. It is at this point that Jesus begins His public ministry.

The Gospel of Matthew records what happens, “The Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. John tried to prevent him saying, ‘I need to be baptized by you, and yet you are coming to me?’ Jesus said to him in reply, ‘Allow it now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Then he allowed him. After Jesus was baptized, he came up from the water and behold, the heavens were opened for him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming upon him. And a voice came from the heavens, saying ‘This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased “ (Matthew 3:13-17).

This is a most important connection that St. Matthew reveals because Jesus is truly the Messiah that Isaiah bore witness to.

This scene in Matthew is also important because we see a glimpse of the Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

We will again see this image at the Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8). After the Resurrection, Jesus will send the Catholic Church to go to all the nations to baptize in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19).

This is important for all of God’s people because we have the means to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit through our own Baptism (Acts 2:38) and receive the power of the Holy Spirit through the “laying of hands” (Hebrews 6:2).

St. Paul instructs St. Timothy, “Do not lay hands too readily on anyone, and do not share in another’s sin. Keep yourself pure” (1 Timothy 5:22).

Why do we see this caution from St. Paul? St. Paul’s letter to the Colossians is key!

He writes, “Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his body, which is the church, of which I am a minister in accordance with God’s stewardship given to me to bring to completion for you the word of God, the mystery hidden from ages and from generations past. But now it has been manifested to his holy ones, to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory. It is he whom we proclaim, admonishing everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. For this I labor and struggle, in accord with the exercise of his power working within me” (Colossians 1:24-29).

St. Paul is instructing us to prepare our converts, preparing them to receive the gift and power of the Holy Spirit. St. Timothy is instructed not to “lay hands” too readily.

They must be prepared and instructed in the Faith.

St. Paul says “The aim of this instruction is love from a pure heart, a good conscience, and a sincere faith” (1 Timothy 1:5).

Regardless if you are a catechuman, a candidate, or you are a life long Catholic, the Church calls us to take self inventory.

Jesus was tempted, He began His public Ministry being “led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil” (Matthew 4:1).

The 40 days has a symbolic meaning for Christians. We see the Israelites wandering in the desert for 40 years.

Jonah warned the Ninevites that God would destroy the great city in 40 days (Jonah 3:4) and the people responded by covering themselves with sackcloth and ashes.

God spared them because of their repentance. Ash Wednesday is the beginning of Lent, a 40 day season of the Church.

It is at the Easter Vigil that millions around the world are be recieved into the Catholic Faith. Catechumans are baptized and along with the Candidates, are confirmed into the Catholic Faith.

They will receive the Eucharist and share at the Table of Plenty with the whole Church!

Ascension Thursday is so important because it is the birth of the Papacy.

Daniel 7:13-14 states, “As the visions during the night continued, I saw One like a son of man coming, on the clouds of heaven; When he reached the Ancient One and was presented before him, He received dominion, glory, and kingship; nations and peoples of every language serve him.  His dominion is an everlasting dominion that shall not be taken away, his kingship shall not be destroyed.”

Consider what Jesus Promised to St. Peter, “Blessed are you Simon son of Bar-Jonah.  For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.  And so I say to you, you are Peter (Kapa), and upon this rock (Kapa) I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.  I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven.  Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and what ever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” (Matthew 16:17-19).

Consider Jesus, the Son of Man, giving the keys to his “Royal Stewart” once He received this dominion at the appointed time with the Ascension of Jesus.

Jesus is the stone that destroys the great statue of Babylon.  “In the lifetime of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destoyed or delivered up to another people”.

Ascension Thursday is a very important feast of the Church!

 

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The Catholic Defender: The Chair Of St. Peter In Rome

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 28th, 2016

ChairFebruary 22 is the Feast of the Chair of Peter. This morning, two Jehovah’s Witnesses (JW’s) stopped by to give me a call. I knew who they were instantly and I surprised them by sharing with them why they came by to see me! And I was ready for them  sharing with them Matthew 16:16-19:

“Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do men say that the Son of man is?” And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

Words to gleam from this scriptural text: Christ (Messiah), Rock (Kepa), Church (Εκκλησία/ekklēsía), keys, bound (bind), and loose. From this text we see who Jesus is, Jesus is truly the Messiah, the Christ. We see Jesus identifying who Simon, Son of Bar-Jona is, the Rock (Kapa) and we see Jesus as the Son of David transferring the keys of authority from the household of David (Isaiah 22:22) now to Simon Peter and the household of God (1 Timothy 3:15).

Peter 3Peter alone was given the Keys, the office of the keys, plus in this text, Peter alone was given the power to bind and loose (Matthew 16:16-19), Notice in this text, Jesus speaking to Peter as “You” speaking to Peter seven times in this text. Clearly, Jesus was speaking to Peter! We see Matthew bring in the rest of the apostles with Peter representing the Church with this authority together (Matthew 18:18).

John 21:15-17 Jesus commissioned St. Peter as Shepherd of the sheep given the charge three times.

Acts 2:14-41 On Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles in the form of tongues of fire, it was Peter who gave the first Papal discourse in which 3,000 were converted and baptized to the Catholic Faith that very day.

Acts 5:3-10 It was Peter’s word spokem to Ananias and Sapphira who had attempted to deceive the Apostles and thereby the Holy Spirit, causeing them to drop dead!

Acts 5:15 People came just to have Peter’s shadow pass over them and the sick were healed.

simon-magus-money-peterActs 8:18-23 St. Peter rebuked Simon Magus, the sorcerer, who thought he could buy the power of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 9:38-41 St. Peter raised Tabitha (Dorcas) from the dead. This was through the power of God but it also shows God’s anointing on Peter.

Acts 11:1-18 St. Peter instructed the other apostles how God had granted power through their word to include what was clean and unclean. We can now enjoy bacon for example, how the Holy Spirit revealed to Peter that the Gentiles were being accepted and received by God into the Church.

Acts 15:7 At the Council of Jerusalem in 49 A.D., there was much debate until Peter stood up and spoke, that ended the debate. Some will look at this text and claim that James was the first Pope as he took control of the Council (Acts 15:13-21) but people do not always understand how the Bishop of Rome, the Pope respects the Bishop of any diocese he visits? The Apostle James was regarded the first Bishop of Jerusalem. Naturally Peter would respect that call. James was not over Peter.

Peter 41 Corinthians 15:5-7 After Jesus resurrection, Jesus first appeared to Peter then to the Twelve. This really ties in with Matthew 16:18 and John 21:51-17.

Galatians 2:6-10 St. Peter was given charge the gospel for the circumcision, here is this text:

“And from those who were reputed to be something (what they were makes no difference to me; God shows no partiality)–those, I say, who were of repute added nothing to me; but on the contrary, when they saw that I had been entrusted with the gospel to the uncircumcised, just as Peter had been entrusted with the gospel to the circumcised (for he who worked through Peter for the mission to the circumcised worked through me also for the Gentiles), and when they perceived the grace that was given to me, James and Cephas and John, who were reputed to be pillars, gave to me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship, that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised; only they would have us remember the poor, which very thing I was eager to do.”

What can we gleam from this? St. Paul is defending his right as an Apostle because Christ called him (Acts 9:1-19) to reach out to the Gentiles (uncircumcised) and Peter the mission to the circumcised. Notice St. Paul admits that Peter with Paul also worked for the Gentiles. This is important as both St. Peter and Paul would give their lives in Rome under the Roman Emperor Nero.

jesus_washing_apostles_feet_parson_lTo better understand St. Peter’s role among the Apostles and the Church, it is best to see it from an Old Testament family structure, not a modern constitution like we have in the United States. God the Father is not seen as some court judge, but as a loving Father. Jesus is not some kind of lawyer who defends the right of the sinner, but as a brother, the first born. Yes, God is Judge, and Jesus died for sin, but the Church is a family, a household, so the judgement will be fatherly and the Lord’s passion will be for love of His people. The Church is born out of this understanding.

Jesus is the Master Builder, He is the Rock that the builders (Israelite) rejected who has become the corner stone (Psalms 118:22/Acts 4:11) and 1 Corinthians 10:4. St. Peters confession did not come from him, it came from God the Father and Jesus institutes upon St. Peter, this new name which is significant. When ever the Lord would change the name of someone, this was always significant. Firstly, in Genesis 17:5, He changed Abram’s (Father) name to ‘Abraham,’ (Father of many nations) as part of God’s Covenant making Abraham the ‘Father’ of a host of nations.

jacobSecondly, in Genesis 35:10, God changed Jacob’s name to Israel and stated, ”I am God almighty, be fruitful and multiply. A nation indeed an assembly of nations shall stem from you.”

Thirdly, He changed Simon, Bar Jona, to Peter, the Rock. This is important because we are now moving into the New Testament, a new Covenant and Jesus is preparing His Apostles for this great new season in human history.

Again, this very morning, Jehovah Witnesses arrived at my door and I was pleased to share with them the foundation of the Chair of Peter, the authority of the Catholic Church Jesus founded nearly 2,000 years ago.

I was recently challenged by a number of ministers from the Baptist, Church of Christ, Seventh Day Adventist, and some Non-Denominations on St. Peter even being a leader in the early Church. And with this group, using early Church Fathers will not fly high with them, so can we gleam anything from the New Testament that reveals St. Peter’s primacy?

From the discussion, some might concede that St. Peter was the “Chief Apostle”, consider Matthew 10:2 which lists St. Peter first among the Apostles. 1 John 35-41 tells us that St. Andrew, first a follower of St. John the Baptist, was at the baptism of Jesus and from that point on began to follow Jesus. It was then that Andrew informed his brother Simon about Jesus who is depicted by the Gospels of Matthew (4:18-20), Mark (Mark 1:16-18), and Luke (Luke 5:3-11) calling St. Peter and the others to follow him.

netsIt is interesting that in the Gospel of St. John, Jesus first refers to Simon as “Cephas” which means “Peter” (John 1:42). Is this an example where St. John viewed St. Peter as the head of the Church? Consider the following story:

“Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. So she ran, and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” Peter then came out with the other disciple, and they went toward the tomb. They both ran, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first; and stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; he saw the linen cloths lying, and the napkin, which had been on his head, not lying with the linen cloths but rolled up in a place by itself. Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not know the scripture, that he must rise from the dead.” John 20:1-9

Peter 6What can we gleam from this text? Peter was a much slower runner than John? Perhaps, but it is interesting that John reaches the tomb first but waits until Peter gets there and enters first. That is very significant to the respect John has for Peter’s role as the leader.

Following St. Peter during the early years after the Passion, death, and Resurrection of Jesus we know that he was present at Pentecost. He gives the first Papal dissertation in Acts 2:14-41 when 3,000 people were baptized the first day.

A short time later, St. Peter gave a second speech at the portico called “Solomon’s Portico”. St. Peter and John were taken from there to the Sanhedrin where the Pharisees wanted to punish them but feared the people who were praising God (Acts 4:21).

Peter 7We know that St. Peter was still in the Holy Land when persecution broke out against the Christians.

After St. Stephen was stoned to death, people went everywhere to escape Saul of Tarsus. Everyone except the Apostles. St. Peter gives a third speech and Baptized Cornelius near Caesarea.

St. Peter received a vision and message from an angel while in Joppa when three men came to see him to take him to Cornelius.

This would be very important for the early Church as God reveals to St. Peter his plan of salvation for the Gentiles.

St. Peter begins to speak when the Holy Spirit came upon the house of Cornelius.

St. Peter ensures the baptism of the entire household (Acts 10:9-48).

This would become important for the early Church and infant baptism.

King Herod captures St. Peter and puts him in prison, but God had other plans for St. Peter getting him away from the clutches of Herod (Acts 12:1-17).

We know that St. Peter was in Jerusalem for the Council of Jerusalem (49 A.D.), “After much debate had taken place, Peter got up and said to them, ‘My brothers, you are well aware that from the early days God made his choice among you that through my mouth the Gentiles would hear the word of the gospel and believe. And God, who knows the heart, bore witness by granting them the Holy Spirit just as he did us. He made no distinction between us and them, for by faith he purified their hearts”.

Peter 8After this scene, we do not see much of St. Peter in Jerusalem. This is the last time we see St. Peter in the book of Acts. St. Paul becomes the dominate figure from this point on.

So where does St. Peter Go? Does he ride his donkey into the sunset into retired life? No, not at all!

According to Tradition, St. Peter went to Antioch and ordained St. Evodius a bishop.

St. Peter appears to have gone immediately to Antioch after being released from jail by the angel. St. Ignatius of Antioch was a disciple of the Apostle John, who died around AD 110 AD.

St. John Chrysostom (c. 347 – 407 AD), grew up in Antioch, learned the history which taught that St. Ignatius had been ordained at the hands of Apostles, including St. Peter.

ignatius 2According to ancient tradition, St. Ignatius was the child whom Christ had held, as described in Matthew 18:4. It is also from here that St. John Chrysostom learned the history and tradition that Christ was born on December 25th, 2 B.C.

St. John Chrysostom would preach on the subject literally on Christmas day. It is important to understand from this tradition, St. Peter was in Antioch at one point. What about St. Peter in Rome?

Writing in his Annals circa A.D. 116, Tacitus a Pagan Historian, describes the response of Emperor Nero to the great fire that swept Rome in A.D. 64:
“But not all the relief that could come from man, not all the bounties that the prince could bestow, nor all the atonements which could be presented to the gods, availed to relieve Nero from the infamy of being believed to have ordered the conflagration, the fire of Rome. Hence to suppress the rumor, he falsely charged with the guilt, and punished Christians, who were hated for their enormities. Christus, the founder of the name, was put to death by Pontius Pilate, procurator of Judea in the reign of Tiberius: but the pernicious superstition, repressed for a time broke out again, not only through Judea, where the mischief originated, but through the city of Rome also, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their center and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind.”

Nero 1Suetonius, another Pagan historian also confirms Nero’s persecution of Christians at Rome (c. 120 A.D.): “Punishment by Nero was inflicted on the Christians, a class of men given to a new and mischievous superstition.” (Lives of the Caesars 26.2)

One of the Early Church Fathers who heard from St. Peter personally, was ordained by St. Peter would become the third successor to St. Peter. St. Clement of Rome about 95 A.D. wrote:

“Let us come to the heroes nearest to our times. . . . Let us set before our eyes the good apostles; Peter, who by reason of unrighteous jealousy endured not one or two but many labours, and having thus borne his witness went to his due place of glory. Paul, by reason of jealousy and strife, pointed out the prize of endurance. . . . When he had preached in the East and in the West he received the noble renown of his faith. Having taught righteousness to the whole world, even reaching the bounds of the West, and having borne witness before rulers, he thus left the world and went to the holy place, becoming the greatest pattern of endurance.”

St. Clement writes of Peter‘s stay in Rome, “I do not command you, as Peter and Paul did”.

Peter and paul 1Ignatius of Antioch wrote: “Not as Peter and Paul did, do I command you [Romans]. They were apostles, and I am a convict” (Letter to the Romans 4:3 [A.D. 110]). Such a comment would only make sense if Peter had been a leader, if not the leader, of the church in Rome.”

Later in the second century, Irenaeus of Lyons believed that Peter and Paul had been the founders of the Church in Rome and had appointed Linus as succeeding bishop.

Tertullian also writes: “But if you are near Italy, you have Rome, where authority is at hand for us too. What a happy church that is, on which the apostles poured out their whole doctrine with their blood; where Peter had a passion like that of the Lord, where Paul was crowned with the death of John (the Baptist, by being beheaded).”

St. Dionysius of Corinth also serves as a late second-century witness to the tradition. He wrote: “You (Pope Soter) have also, by your very admonition, brought together the planting that was made by Peter and Paul at Rome and at Corinth; for both of them alike planted in our Corinth and taught us; and both alike, teaching similarly in Italy, suffered martyrdom at the same time”.

Later tradition, first found in Saint Jerome, attributes to Peter a 25-year episcopate (or apostolate) in Rome.

Peter-upside-downSt. Peter’s crucifixion in Rome is the only recorded traditional account of St. Peters death. John 21:18 states, ” Amen, amen, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to dress yourself and go where you wanted; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go. He said this signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God”.It is interesting to note that there are no viable examples or traditions of St. Peter having this experience anywhere else.

The grave that is claimed by the Church to be that of St. Peter lies at the foot of the aedicula beneath the floor under the main Altar. DNA testing reveals that the bones found were the bones of a 60-70 year old man.

vatican_stOn June 26, 1968, Pope Paul VI announced that the relics of St. Peter had been discovered. The evidence through scientific analysis found St. Peters name more than 20 times at the site, the bones had a purple and gold fabric.

From Scripture, tradition, history, from the very beginning, the evidence is clear that St. Peter was the first Pope, chief apostle, leader, Bishop of Rome, Royal Steward, Prime Minister, or any other name you can give this “office” that Christ commissioned Him as “Fishers of men” and “Shepherd of the Sheep”.

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The Guardian Angel: Eucharistic Miracle of GRUARO (VALVASONE) ITALY, 1294

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 27th, 2016

Jesus and FaustinaJesus to Faustina, “My mercy is greater than your sins and those of the entire world. Who can measure the extent of My goodness.” Wow, and through the Eucharist he gives us His love and mercy. The Eucharist is central to our faith. Listen to catechesis again from Father Hardon, what a joy, and followed by another Eucharistic Miracle. To Jesus through Mary, GregoryMary

The center of the whole Catholic liturgy is the Eucharist. The Eucharist is most important in the life of the Church because it is Jesus Christ. It is the incarnation continued in space and time. The other sacraments and all the Church’s ministries and apostolates are directed toward the Eucharist.

The word “Eucharist” means “thanksgiving”. This is explained by the fact that Christ “gave thanks” when He instituted the Eucharist and this is the supreme act of Christian gratitude to God.

Eucharist 2The Eucharist is the sacrament which really, truly and substantially contains the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ under the appearances of Bread and wine. It is the great sacrament of God’s love in which Christ is eaten, the mind is filled with grace and a pledge is given to us of future glory.

Christ instituted the sacrament of the Eucharist at the Last Supper on the night before He died on the cross. This is recorded by St. Paul in his letter to the Corinthians (cf. I Corinthians 11:23-26) and in the Synoptic Gospels of Matthew (26:26-28), Mark (14:22-24), and Luke (22:19-20). St. John omitted the institution because he wrote his Gospel to supplement what the other evangelists had already written. The Eucharist was instituted in this way: “Jesus took some bread and when He had said the blessing He broke it and gave it to the disciples. ‘Take it and eat,’ He said, ‘this is my body.’ Then He took a cup and when He had returned thanks He gave it to them. ‘Drink all of you from this,’ He said, ‘for this is my blood’” (Matthew 26:26-28).

Like Baptism, the Eucharist is necessary for salvation to be received either sacramentally or in desire. Christ’s words, “if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you will not have life in you” (John 6:53), means that Holy Communion is necessary to sustain the life of grace in a person who has reached the age of reason. Those who, through no fault of their own, do not realize this can receive the necessary grace to remain in God’s friendship through other means. This is similar to what happens with the baptism of desire to first receive the state of grace.

EucharistThe sensible sign in the Eucharist is the appearance of bread and wine, that is, anything in these elements that fall under the senses such as size, color, shape, taste, weight and texture. After consecration, however, this sign contains the whole Christ, His Body and Blood, His Soul and Divinity.

The material necessary for the sacrament is wheaten bread and wine. In the Latin Rite, the bread must be unleavened; in the Eastern Rites of the Catholic Church, leavened bread is used. The wine is mixed with a little water before consecration. Christ chose bread and wine for the matter of the sacrament in order to teach that as we daily partake of food for the body so we should daily receive this heavenly food for the soul. The necessary words for producing the sacrament of the Eucharist are “This is my body”. “This is my blood”.

Christ is present in the Eucharist not only with everything that makes Him man, but with all that makes Him this human being. He is therefore present with all His physical properties, hands and feet and head and human heart. He is present with His human soul, with His thoughts, desires and human affections. He becomes present in the Eucharist by means of transubstantiation.

Mass 2Transubstantiation is the term used to identify the change that takes place at the consecration of the bread and wine at Mass. Therefore after the consecration, nothing remains of the bread and wine except their external properties. By this we mean the bread still looks like bread and tastes like bread, and the wine still looks and tastes like wine, but they are no longer bread and wine. Their substance becomes the living Body and Blood of Christ.

It is a matter of faith that Jesus Christ is contained under each particle of the species of bread and wine. No matter how great the number of parts into which the species are divided, the whole Christ is present in every portion. He is present in the Eucharist as long as the species remain. Therefore, we worship the Blessed Sacrament as we would worship the person of Jesus Himself.

The Eucharist is the most excellent of all the sacraments because it contains Christ Himself. All the other sacraments are channels of grace but they do not actually possess Jesus Christ, the Author of Grace. Moreover, the other sacraments point to the Eucharist as their purpose or end. Baptism enables us to receive the Eucharist; Confirmation perfects the Christian so that his faith in the Eucharist may remain strong; Penance and Anointing of the Sick cleanse the soul from weakness and sin and prepare it for the reception of the Eucharist; Holy Orders ordains the priests necessary to consecrate and offer the Eucharist; and Matrimony is the earthly sign of the purpose of the Eucharist, to unite the faithful with Christ in selfless love.

Bible 2The doctrine of the Real Presence is, first of all, proved from Sacred Scripture. At the Last Supper, Christ simply declared that He was giving the disciples His Body and Blood. Nothing in the context of His words indicates He was speaking figuratively, whereas everything shows He meant it to be taken literally (cf. Matthew 26:26-28; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:19-20).

In the Gospel of John, when Christ foretold He would give His Body to eat and His Blood to drink, many of His disciples left Him because they would not believe this. Yet, instead of taking back what He said or qualifying His statement, He repeated the promise and even asked the Apostles if they also wanted to leave Him (cf. John 6:47-67).

Sacred Tradition from the earliest times teaches the Real Presence. St. Ignatius of Antioch wrote in A.D. 107, “The Eucharist is the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ” (Smyrneans, 6:2). And St. Justin wrote in A.D. 145, “As Jesus Christ our Savior was made incarnate by the word of God and had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so too, as we have been taught, the food which has been made into the Eucharist by the Eucharistic prayer set down by Him …is both the flesh and the blood of that incarnate Jesus” (I Apology, 66).

vatican 1The teaching of the Church on the Real Presence is defined revealed doctrine according to the Council of Trent. It declares that the whole Christ is truly, really and substantially present in the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist immediately after consecration. It also declares that the whole Christ is present under each form, and under each part of particle of each species of both bread and wine. By the “whole Christ” in the Eucharist, we mean He is present in the fullness of His divine and human nature. He is present under the sacramental veils with the fullness of His divine attributes as well as all His human qualities.

We should worship Jesus in the Tabernacle because He is present there under the appearance of bread and wine as truly as He is in heaven. We should give Him the adoration given to God alone because of His infinite perfection and His supreme domination over all things created. The Church fosters devotion to the Real Presence through public adoration of the Holy Eucharist, notably exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Benediction and Forty Hours Devotion.

BenedictionBlessedSacramentBenediction of the Blessed Sacrament is a special devotion that dates from at least the fifteenth century. It consists of Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, hymns, readings, prayers and the blessing of the people with the Holy Eucharist. Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament is the solemn placing of a consecrated Host in a monstrance, on the altar, to be viewed and adored by the faithful. The exposition is opened with a hymn and incensing by the priest or deacon. During the Exposition, public or private prayers are said, and the ceremony is commonly concluded with benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. Forty Hours Devotion is the public exposition of the Blessed Sacrament in the monstrance for forty hours, either consecutively or over a period of three days.

The sign by which the people know that Christ is present in the tabernacle is the sanctuary light which burns night and day before the tabernacle. Also a tabernacle veil or other suitable means may be prescribed by competent authority. We manifest our adoration outwardly by genuflecting before the place where the Blessed Sacrament is reserved.

No doubt, Christ is present in other ways besides the Real Presence:

He is present when the Church prays;
He is present when the Church performs her works of mercy;
He is present in the Church as she governs the people of God;
He is present in the pastors who exercise their priestly and Episcopal power;
He is specially present in the Church when she offers in His Name the Sacrifice of the Mass;
priestchaliceHe is present when the Church administers the sacraments.
But the Real Presence is absolutely unique. It is the physical presence of Christ in our midst, no less truly present than He is now present at the right hand of the Father of Heaven. It is called the “Real Presence” because it is presence in the fullest sense possible. It is a substantial presence by which Christ, the God-man, is now on earth, no less truly that He was during His visible presence in history in the first century in Palestine.

Editors Note: I would simply add to that we recognize that God is omniscient (God is eveywhere), we recognize His Presence when His Word is proclaimed, we recognize Him through the authority of the Church, and we also recognize him in the breaking of bread (Luke 24:30-35).

Eucharistic Miracle of GRUARO (VALVASONE) ITALY, 1294

Among the most authoritative documents which describe the Eucharistic miracle which took place at Gruaro in 1294 is that of local historian Antonio Nicoletti (1765). A woman was washing one of the altar linens of the Church of St. Giusto in the public wash house of Versiola. Suddenly she saw the altar linen become tinged with Blood. Observing more closely, she noted that the Blood was flowing from a consecrated Particle remaining among the folds of the cloth.

Gruaro 1The relic of this miracle is kept in the Church of the Most Holy Body of Christ in Valvasone, but the miracle happened in Gruaruo. In 1294, a young housemaid went to the public wash-house of Versiola to wash the altar linens of the Church of St. Giusto in Gruaro. Suddenly, the woman noticed that a consecrated Host had remained by mistake among the folds of the cloth and that Blood was flowing from the Host.

Frightened by this inexplicable event, she immediately ran to alert the pastor who then informed the Bishop of Concordia, Giacomo di Ottonello from Cividade. The Bishop, having learned the facts, asked to be able to keep the cloth of the miracle in his Cathedral in Concordia. However, the pastor of Gruaro and the family of the Counts of Valvasone, patrons of the churches of Gruaro and of Valvasone, wanted to keep the cloth.

Gruaro 2No agreement was reached, and so it was decided to seek recourse with the Holy See. In the end, Rome let the Counts keep the relic, on the condition that they would build a church dedicated to the Most Holy Body of Christ. The construction of the church was completed in 1483.

The oldest and most authoritative document describing the miracle is a decree of Pope Nicholas V written in 1454. The title of the parish church, formerly St. Mary and St. John the Evangelist was thereby changed to the Church of the Most Holy Body of Christ (March 28, 1454). Today, the cloth is kept in a crystal cylinder, held by a precious reliquary of silver made by master craftsman Antonio Calligari. The celebration of the Holy Cloth is commemorated on the 5th Thursday of Lent, at the end of days of adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, with the participation of the priests and of the community of Valvasone. During the celebration of Corpus Christi, the reliquary is carried in procession with the Most Blessed Sacrament.

Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly. I offer Thee 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 indifferences whereby He is offended. And through the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of Thee the conversion of poor sinners.

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The Catholic Defender: Asleep In Christ Gives Us Hope

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 27th, 2016

soul 6A couple of years ago, John Benko, founder of deepertruth and good friend did outstanding in a debate with Anti-Catholic George Lujack based on Our Lady, Mother Mary. John did outstanding exposing the anti-Catholic argument that Catholics “worship Mary”. Of course, we do not!

As I recall John’s debate, I am reinforced that an informed Catholic will always do well against an Anti-Catholic no matter the topic of debate, especially on position on Mary, the Saints, and prayer. In an Earlier debate, George Lujack (the opponent) made the argument that no one is in heaven, that the saved are in the ground body and soul in a “sleeping” state.

Mr. Lujack believes that both the body and the soul are in the grave waiting for the resurrection of the Lord.

Their argument is taken from 1 Thessalonians 4:16, “For the Lord himself shall come down from heaven with commandment, and with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God: and the dead who are in Christ, shall rise first.” This is not how the early Church interpreted this text, the body is indeed in the grave, but the soul lives on. The Catholic Church has for 2,000 years have taught that the soul will go to one of three places immediately after death.

soul 2The saved will go to Heaven or Purgatory, the damned will go to hell. Purgatory is not an eternal state so the soul will go to Heaven eventually due to the grace and mercy of God. When the trumpet of God sounds on that great and glorious day, the dead in Christ will rise, just like Matthew 27:51-54:

“And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many. When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “Truly this was the Son of God!”

The General Judgment will be far more a complete and dramatic scale, a grander scale more than this, the soul will be reunited with the body and then judgment. The saved will enter into Heaven and the damned will go to hell.

soul 1The soul does not die, I remember the medical establishment taught us that no one knows when the soul of a person passes on so we should always be mindful of those who are dying in the hospital.

I think this is true so we need to give them as much comfort as we can by being encouraging. When I worked in the Emergency Room, I was very mindful of this. I remember one Lady who had been pronounced dead by the doctor, when I was getting her prepared to put her in a shroud, she woke up and I began to respond but she was ready to go.

She did not want me to help her, she immediately went back into her prose, she looked very much in peace. The doctor let her go.

One of the important Priests who played a major role in my formation, Father Micek, he told me the story when he was a young priest in Arkansas, a Mission Territory. He was teaching an elderly lady the Catholic Faith when one evening, Father was called about the lady going into a coma. The Lady’s Daughter called Father because her Mother was in a coma for 5 days. At this time, there was not the great medical ability to give IV, so the Lady was greatly dehydrated, this was a serious health issue, close to death. Father baptizes the woman and then begins to administer the Annointing of the Sick. She was totally unconscious, yet at the point when Father finished the Annointing, the woman sat right up and cried, “Thank God, thank you Father”! Father was a young man and just beginning his ministry. He almost fell over in totally surprize! Father’s story has always stuck with me as I can imagine this scene!

DTHG1It was 29 December 2004, I received a Red Cross message informing me that my Mother was dying. The Doctor and Hospice all were confirming Mom’s status with the Red Cross. I was informed that my Mother was coming in and out of consciousness and she had been calling for me. I was serving in New Orleans working at the Military Enlistment Processing Center (MEPS) as the Medical Element NCOIC.

I arrived home from work and that is when I was notified by my wife of the situation. My family in Missouri alerted us before the Red Cross message arrived to my unit. My Command was afraid to let me respond to my Mother’s wish because the next day was for the Recruiters, the opportunity to floor Applicants all day. I was able to work out support from my Element, but my Command would not budge. I was able to fly to Missouri the following evening after the mission was completed. My Mother’s persistence kept her alive as long as she hoped I was on my way home.

dth5I finally arrived at home in Southwestern Missouri at 23:00 the following night. I flew wearing my Class A uniform. Mom had never seen me in uniform through out my military career. I always went home in civilian clothes, but on this trip, in honor of my Mother, I was determined to wear my uniform. A friend picked me up at the airport and they briefed me what was happening. Mom had been in a coma for nearly 5 days, she has not had anything to eat or drink so she was dehydrated.

They had to put a diaper on her because she was not conscious. When I arrived there I could see her skin tone was pale, her eyes were sunken in, her joints were swollen from lack of circulation, her vital signs were practically non-existent and her breathing was raspy. I sat down at the foot of the bed and simply observed what was happening. One of my Aunt’s was there with my Sister-In-Law and Brother who were trying to make Mom as comfortable as they could.

After a few moments, everyone left the room leaving my Brother and me alone with Mother. Mom didn’t know who I was, she was in a coma state. As we both sat there with Mom, my Brother began to sing a Johnny Cash song to break the ice. I kind of just listened and watched. There was no response from Mom not even a twitch. When he paused, I began singing a song that came to mind, “Immaculate Mary, your praises we sing….”

Mary 5At this point, Mom began to respond to what I was singing. I began singing every verse I could think of. Mom began to sing with a voice that seemed to come deep from within her chest and she became stronger the more I sang. I was singing every song I could think of as Mom seemed to be coming out of this death trap.

We ended up singing praises to God for 30-40 minutes after which, Mom was alert, could see me and I was able to explain my medals on my uniform to her. This was the most amazing thing, everyone there was scratching their heads as I was very excited. The following morning, Father Bill arrived (childhood Priest) to give Mom the Anointing of the Sick.

As soon as Father left, Mom was able to get up and use the rest room, she sat down at the table and was eating chicken, chili dogs, and pizza. Again, everyone was scratching their heads trying not to get too excited about this.

I was only quoting James 5:13-15, “Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone in good spirits? He should sing praise. Is anyone among you sick? He should summon the presbyters of the church, and they should pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will raise him up. If he has committed any sins, he will be forgiven”.

soul 7Consider Elisha, “Once while some Israelites were burying a man, suddenly they saw a band of raiders; so they threw the man’s body into Elisha’s tomb. When the body touched Elisha’s bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet.”

Also Samuel, “Now Samuel had died, and all Israel had mourned for him and buried him in Ramah, his own city. And Saul had put the mediums and the necromancers out of the land. The Philistines assembled and came and encamped at Shunem. And Saul gathered all Israel, and they encamped at Gilboa. When Saul saw the army of the Philistines, he was afraid, and his heart trembled greatly. And when Saul inquired of the Lord, the Lord did not answer him, either by dreams, or by Urim, or by prophets. Then Saul said to his servants, “Seek out for me a woman who is a medium, that I may go to her and inquire of her.” And his servants said to him, “Behold, there is a medium at En-dor.” So Saul disguised himself and put on other garments and went, he and two men with him. And they came to the woman by night. And he said, “Divine for me by a spirit and bring up for me whomever I shall name to you.” The woman said to him, “Surely you know what Saul has done, how he has cut off the mediums and the necromancers from the land. Why then are you laying a trap for my life to bring about my death?”

purgatory 3But Saul swore to her by the Lord, “As the Lord lives, no punishment shall come upon you for this thing.” Then the woman said, “Whom shall I bring up for you?” He said, “Bring up Samuel for me.” When the woman saw Samuel, she cried out with a loud voice. And the woman said to Saul, “Why have you deceived me? You are Saul.” The king said to her, “Do not be afraid. What do you see?” And the woman said to Saul, “I see a god coming up out of the earth.” He said to her, “What is his appearance?” And she said, “An old man is coming up, and he is wrapped in a robe.” And Saul knew that it was Samuel, and he bowed with his face to the ground and paid homage.”

From a Christian perspective, the soul lives and is aware of the things through the power of God.

soul 3Hebrews 12:1-2 says, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

It is clear from this text that we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. St. Paul sees this as a major reason we should fight the battle of life because we are being watched by heaven.

At the death of Jesus, he went to preach to the spirits in “prison” indicating that those in this state were with Jesus. Jesus opened the doors for all those in his hearing, those saved from the foundation of the world. They were not spiritually dead, but they clearly were waiting. The Catholic Church does not believe that the soul sleeps in the tomb until the Resurrection. The Saints are seen praising God around the throne. Revelation 4 is basically the heavenly worship that is taking place in the Mass, we are participating in that heavenly worship.

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The Catholic Defender: Battle Rhythm II

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 25th, 2016

lighthouseIn the Army we have a saying that we use to ensure that our troops are prepared daily to handle the constant missions being laid out.  We call the following, “Battle Rhythm”.

The first thing we would do would be “Stand Too” which before dawn every Soldier would be at their fighting position prepared for an attack.

Once daylight had broken through, only specific guards would maintain vigilance as everyone else would continue on for the day.

The cooks would go to the dining hall, the medics would go to the Aid Station, maintenance would go to the motor pool. Everyone has different areas of responsibilities. All would have to have personal hygiene done before all of this.

I remember what it was like putting cold water on your face to shave in zero degree weather. I was always hardcore like that as I never really took to electric shavers in the field. Platoon Sergeants would go to the First Sergeant’s meeting to get the information and the plans for the next coming days.

We would develop a “Soldiers Book” to keep up with all the Soldiers under your responsibility. They had to be supervised to ensure that not only all missions were met on time as planed, but that they were in the correct uniform and that their equipment is serviceable.

DTB 62All this is important to get through the day. Once you have everything supported and covered, once everything has been met, you might be able to get some downtime. The Army has really changed in 26 years as today, you will see that just about everyone has a lab top computer that can play movies, use Internet, amazing technology to keep up with the family and world back home.

The Battle Rhythm is an important tool to help each Soldier stay on top of their responsibilities.

Our Faith can be like that as well. Without an established Battle Rhythm, it is easy to pass days without praying or dedicating time with the Lord that we need.

1 Timothy 4:7-9 states, “Avoid profane and silly myths. Train yourself for devotion, for, while physical training is of limited value, devotion is valuable in every respect, since it holds a promise of life both for the present and for the future”.

It’s good if we can make daily Mass, weekly bible study, rosary and other devotions you can join in on. It’s those individual commitments that can be a challenge.

A Battle Rhythm can help you manage each day to dedicate your commitment to the Lord. It’s important to be prepared for the missions coming up that we support such as the pro-life rally’s, or other issues we are involved in.

DTB 63Prayer is very important. Daily prayer is personal, how many times do we fail because there just is not enough time in a day?

That has always been a struggle at times especially when I am home because of all the events and obligations I end up participating in.

Sometimes just a change to chill out and watch a good movie or something can take up a lot of time.

This is when a Battle Rhythm can be a tool the Lord can use to help you fulfill your own commitments. Let us not grow lazy in our prayer life, but faithful to our obligations to prayer.

Prayer can be work at times, sometimes we may not feel like it. Do it anyway! You never know what good you offer by doing so!

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The Catholic Defender: Transgender Progressives Seek To Apply Themselves to a Bathroom Near You

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 25th, 2016

Bath 1In North Carolina, Under the Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act, in schools and government buildings people must use the bathroom that corresponds with their “biological sex,” defined as the one “stated on a person’s birth certificate.”

Also, Target has entered into this saying, “We believe that everyone—every team member, every guest, and every community—deserves to be protected from discrimination, and treated equally. Consistent with this belief, Target supports the federal Equality Act, which provides protections to LGBT individuals, and opposes action that enables discrimination.”

What Target has done has sparked a petition that so far has nearly 1,000,000 signed signatures pledging not to shop there because they oppose biological men going into women’s bathrooms. A statement from the American Family Association said, “This means a man can simply say he ‘feels like a woman today’ and enter the women’s restroom… even if young girls or women are already in there…”

Bill O’Reilly of Fox News said on the Factor (4/24/2016) that the Government should furnish three bathroom settings, one for males, one for females, and one for transgenders. But he also said that public businesses should not be forced by the Government to implement three bathrooms, that people who consider themselves as “transgender” should utilize public restrooms for obvious reasons.

Bath 2This craziness seems to have nationally become prominent as radical progressives point, “In Doe v. Regional School Unit, the Maine Supreme Court held that a transgender girl had a right to use the women’s bathroom at school because her psychological well-being and educational success depended on her transition. The school, in denying her access, had “treated [her] differently from other students solely because of her status as a transgender girl.”

The Court identified the boy in question as “Susan” not based on biology, but on sexual orientation, “RSU 26’s later decision to ban Susan from the girls’ bathroom, based not on a determination that there had been some change in Susan’s status but on others’ complaints about the school’s well-considered decision, constituted discrimination based on Susan’s sexual orientation,” clearly, the court determined that this was a form of discrimination. The boy “Susan’s” right to use the girl’s bathroom thwarted the rights of the girls who felt uncomfortable using the restroom with a biological boy using it.

Also, in another situation, another boy called Nicole was actually given access to the schools girls restroom but issues developed when another male student began following “Nicole” into the girls bathroom claiming that he was able to also use the girls bathroom.

bath 3In doing a little research into this, I can clearly see the liberal Progressives working to push their agenda wanting to “expose” myths against transgenders using opposite sex bathrooms. Just as the Liberal Progressives have pushed for Climate Change rhetoric to be fact (even though science does not support them), they are using the same tactic to defy common sense with bathroom use.

Where Progressives cannot win through the power of the vote, they push through using the courts against the vast majority calling it discrimination to oppose boys using girls bathrooms because of sexual orientation.

Some how, we have become left center in our politics, the Democrats today are so far left, their policies push for these outrages issues. The Progressive are becoming known as the “bathroom bullies”.

Because of the law against transgender men from using women’s bathrooms, the ACLU is claiming the bill “discriminates against lesbian-gay-bisexual-transgender-queers or LGBTQ people.” Josh Ernest, spokesman for President Obama called the North Carolina’s law “mean spirited.”

gigi 6“Mean spirited”? I just called my Wife, Gigi, who has been a traveling Nurse since 2011 told me when she was in Arizona, she stopped at one of the truck stops to use the restroom. Inside the Latrine, a Mexican man was exiting from a stall in the girls bathroom and Gigi just looked at him thinking, “What in the —- are you doing in here”? She was not happy finding a man in the women’s restroom.

Gigi gave me some insight you will never see coming from a liberal think tank! She said she does not feel comfortable (to put it mildly) being in a stall knowing that a guy is in the next stall? She gave some details I will not share here that most women would relate to and it should be obvious to the sane person. Gigi was very clear to say that if a man has a male appendage, he does not go into a women’s bathroom for common use.

bath 4Here are some response to Target’s policy I thought was interesting (using only first names):

Shelly: I used to enjoy shopping at your store, but if you cant protect our nations children, i wont be back! #targetbathroom #targetboycott 10:32 AM – 20 Apr 2016

Nonna: I will NEVER shop at .@Target as long as perverts allowed n same bathroom as my granddaughters/grandsons! It is an immoral invasion of privacy to allow perverts w/penises n bathrooms w/women, daughters, granddaughters!

The American family Association’s boycott states:

bath 6“Clearly, Target’s dangerous new policy poses a danger to wives and daughters. We think many customers will agree. And we think the average Target customer is willing to pledge to boycott Target stores until it makes protecting women and children a priority. One solution is a common-sense approach and a reasonable solution to the issue of transgendered customers: a unisex bathroom. Target should keep separate facilities for men and women, but for the trans community and for those who simply like using the bathroom alone, a single occupancy unisex option should be provided.” This is basically what Bill O’Reilly had said about Government facilities.

As a Father and a Grandfather, I certainly do not want my Daughter or Granddaughters to be placed in any danger which something like this could be a risk knowing that there are perverts out there. Perhaps the answer might be to have a separate latrine specific for “trangender” minded people. I guess I can see that in airports, truck stops, places of business, schools, government facilities make an accommodation kind of like how ramps were made for the disabled in wheel chairs to be able to get around.

bath 7As a Catholic, I will never accept the lifestyle of the Gay Agenda, it is against my deeply held belief’s in God’s Word. I believe the vast majority of Christians would agree with me. Unfortunately, as the Progressives continue to push forward their ultra-left-wing policies, the courts are discriminating against Christians.

Presidential Candidate Donald Trump told Bill O’Reilly in an interview that this whole issue of transgender should be a matter of the States and not the Federal Government. I agree with that assessment. North Carolina made their decision and that should be respected. Senator Ted Cruz also supports North Carolina’s decision as do I so perhaps each State can figure what is best for it’s people. I think the vast majority of transgender rooms will be rarely used. I believe that the Progressives are using this issue to attack Christians. Pure and simple, to make us yield to acceptance of a sinful lifestyle.

bath 8Here is a truth, the average male today is living in their 80′s, especially if they are 65 today. We are living longer and healthier. Yet, the homosexual male’s average today is between 41 and 42 years old. Disease, Drugs, Suicide are serious factors. It is a sad plight and the Progressives make it worse by trying to make policies making them feel better. We are to love the sinner but hate the sin. We must pray for people’s heart’s to be changed because it is there that people can know that if they think they were born gay, they can be born again.

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The Catholic Defender: The Keys Of Authority, Even When They Are Your Own!

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 23rd, 2016

MEPS 1Jesus asked, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is”? I will respond with a statement. When a person discovers who Jesus is, they find themselves as well!

Between October 2002 through October 2005, I was Stationed in New Orleans serving as the Medical Element’s NCOIC at the Military Enlistment Processing Station (MEPS). One morning as I was in my office I placed my keys and wallet in or on my desk before I went out to do Physical Training (PT). After about an hour I came back finding we were swamped with applicants so I helped out with the physicals until almost noon when I went back into my office to change into my uniform.

At this time, I could not find my keys, I found my wallet but my keys were no where to be found. I looked everywhere for them. I asked everyone to include going to the other sections in the MEPS, but to no avail. I could not find the keys. I ended up having to get a ride home with a friend. My wife Gigi actually went back to the MEPS with me to pick up our jeep and brought it home.

gigi 6The next day, I had to borrow Gigi’s keys to drive the jeep to work. During the day, I resumed looking for those keys, all my important keys for the building were also on my key chain. I could not find my keys and so another day passed and I was worried that the keys were gone for good. On the third day, I still did not find the keys and still was borrowing Gigi’s keys to drive the jeep.

About noon, I left the MEPS to go over to the National Guard Armory where they had a Army store so I could get some things from clothing sales. The MEPS has a Navy store that held no Army supplies that I needed.

On my way back to the MEPS it was lunch time so I made the decision to eat someplace. I had some choices, do I want to go to McDonalds that was up the street about a mile, do I want to go to Wendy’s, I was not sure where I would end up going?

MEPS 2As I was driving right upon a Kentucky Fried Chicken store, I decided to stop at Kentucky Fried Chicken, it was literally the spur of the moment. I had no idea that I was going to stop there until I was right upon it. I drove in and placed my order, then drove around to the window where I paid my bill and waited for my order.

Sitting there thinking to myself, I was still upset about losing my keys and was dumbfounded how I could have left my keys on my desk and lose them? It was about that moment when I asked St. Anthony to help me on this issue. I felt strange that he didn’t pop up into my mind before this, when, all of a sudden, a stranger walked up from behind me, someone I never seen before, and asked me if these were my keys?

I was shocked as I sat there at Kentucky Fried Chicken, with my keys that I hadn’t seen in three days, right in my hands. Nobody, not even I could have known that I was going to be there at KFC when I was there. I almost decided to go up the road to McDonald’s for a hamburger but at the last second turned in where I turned in.

keysThe individual was civilian, would never had been on an Military base, and didn’t know me from Adam. Shocked with my keys in hand, the stranger was gone as quickly as he came. I called Gigi to let her know what just happened and she thought I was high on something. I literally was sitting there in awe. Yes, I had a drop mouth moment.

St. Anthony has been a friend of my wife’s too as she has found several things that she had lost, he’s been a friend. He is the Patron of lost and found articles and after my shock and awe experience, I thanked the Lord profusely and St. Anthony as well.

At the time, I was writing an article showing the main difference that separated Catholics from Protestants concerning the question of authority. Authority is often called “The Keys of Authority”! The Question really comes down to this: Is the Catholic Church authentic? Is it truly the faith that Jesus established? Or are the Protestants correct in rebelling against it? The name ‘Protestant’ is derived from the 16th century reformers who broke away from the Catholic faith.

Keys 3A study of history is vital to discovering the truth of who holds “The Keys of Authority”. Who was right and who was wrong? Religious tradition is simply the record of how people handed down the faith through the generations. Apostolic Succession is the authority beginning with Jesus and His Apostles by which the Sacrament called ‘Holy Orders’ was instituted. For 2000 years the Catholic Church has taught with authority through ‘Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture.’

Protestants do not recognize Sacred Tradition because they reject tradition. Tradition is seen from two primary perspectives. Firstly, they state that the ‘traditions of men’ have no foundation of truth in which to live because they recognize no divine establishment. Secondly, they see tradition in the same light as how Jesus saw the Pharisees.

moses-michelangelo-church-of-san-pietro-in-vincola-1Jesus stated, “The scribes and Pharisees have taken their seat on the chair of Moses, therefore do and observe all things whatsoever they tell you, but do not follow their example. For they preach but do not practice.”

Protestants attempt to tie Catholic Tradition with Old Testament authority. From the Catholic position, the scripture itself is born out of the Sacred Tradition handed down from the Apostles. It is the word of God divinely inspired! Second Thessalonians 2:15 states, “Therefore, brothers, stand firm and hold fast to the traditions that you were taught, either by an oral statement or by a letter of ours”.

For almost four centuries, oral tradition was the authority by which Christians lived. From 33 A.D.to 396 A.D., hundreds of writings were utilized by the Christian communities and accepted as authentic writings on the faith. Then, at the conclusion of the Council of Hippo (393-396 A.D.), the canon (divinely inspired) writings were separated from the Apocryphal books, and the result was what we now call the New Testament.

The Catholic Church was the authority that put the Bible together. This is an historical fact. Just as the Holy Spirit wrote the scripture through inspired authors, the Holy Spirit used the Church to compile the Bible. Now the Holy Spirit uses the Catholic Church to maintain the Bible, and to teach the Bible.

keysMatthew 16:8-18, 19 states, “and I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

The Protestant will attempt to gloss this passage over by rejecting the idea that Christ conferred anything significant upon Peter. They maintain that the ‘Rock’ refers to what Peter answered; “You are the Christ . . .” While agreeing that Jesus is the Rock, He is the Master Builder establishing His foundation upon St. Peter.

Catholics maintain that Peter’s new name was very significant. His name was originally Simon, son of Jonah, or Bar Jonah; ‘Simon’ meant ‘the winds that flow through the weeds.’ Jesus changed Simon’s name to ‘Peter’ meaning the ‘rock.’ Jesus is clearly establishing authority upon Simon Peter.

Jesus gives the keys to the kingdom to Peter, and the power to bind and loose on earth. Jesus has the authority to supersede the keys given to the Household of King David (Isaiah 22:22) to St. Peter (Matthew 16:19). This authority and power was not given to just every Joe Shmuck. It was given to Simon Peter.

keysrevelation (1)Do not think that this authority and power would end with Peter’s death as the ‘keys’ designates an office or any of the other Apostles as well.

According to Acts 14:22,23, “They strengthened the spirits of the disciples and exhorted them to persevere in the faith, saying, ‘it is necessary for us to undergo many hardships to enter the kingdom of God. They appointed presbyters for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, commended them to the Lord in whom they had put their faith”.

When ever the Lord would change the name of someone, this was always significant. Firstly, in Genesis 17:5, He changed Abram’s (Father) name to ‘Abraham,’ (Father of many nations) as part of God’s Covenant making Abraham the ‘Father’ of a host of nations.

Secondly, in Genesis 35:10, God changed Jacob’s name to Israel and stated, ”I am God almighty, be fruitful and multiply. A nation indeed an assembly of nations shall stem from you.”

Thirdly, He changed Simon, Bar Jona, to Peter, the Rock. I believe the Catholic Church makes the most sense, especially when you hear Protestants tell you from the TV set that the church and its teachings are not important.  The Greek presents the Catholic position even stronger, the word for rock is Kepa, “You are Kepa, and upon this Kepa..”  No wonder Protestants have branched to over 40,000 different denominations.

solas_GMSThey take the keys and the power to loose and bind as an individual thing. Then, they give the Holy Spirit credit for their personal positions. This is not apostolic or even biblical.

The Apostles and the Bible reflect a great concern for those who would oppose their authority and teach doctrine other than the Church. Galatians 1:7-9 states, “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 you received, let that one be accursed!”

In 2 Peter 3:16, Peter warns, “Speaking of these (referring to Paul‘s letters), in them there are some things hard to understand that the ignorant and the unstable distort to their own destruction, just as they do the other scriptures.”

Peter 3St. Peter, the first Pope, also states, “Know this first of all that there is no prophecy of scripture that is a matter of personal interpretation, for no prophecy ever came through human will; but rather human beings moved by the Holy Sprit who spoke under the influence of God (2 Peter 20, 21).” This is a warning to those who would attempt to change things, which they do to their own ruin.

All Protestant churches have men as their founders, men who broke away from the Catholic Church, or those who founded churches much later as the Protestant movement deteriorated. These churches (whom the Catholic Church may respect) were man-made, and clearly in violation to the scripture and the teachings of the Apostles.

The Protestants have built their foundation on three major Sola’s; Sola Fide, Sola Scriptura, and Sola Christi. St. Peter’s warning addresses the need to rely upon the Church for authentic interpretation of the Scripture. A true Christian does not have to recognize the authority, or any ministers produced, of a church founded in 1917 in Arkansas.

We are obligated to follow that authority which Jesus established upon this ‘Rock’ the Church of the Apostles. Ephesians 2:19-20 states, “So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone”.

vatican 31 Timothy 3:15 states, “But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the Household of God, which is the Church of the Living God, the Pillar and Foundation of Truth”. Practically every page in the New Testament reveals authority that Christ gave the Apostles.

Pope Francis is the 266th successor of Peter. This succession is significant! Bishops, priests, theologians, and anyone else may have a lot to say, but if it does not coincide with the teaching Magisterial of the Catholic Church and through this body, it just does not carry any weight.

As I thought about this question of authority, I came back to what took place the past three days losing my keys and how I had them given to me. The Lord can give us signs or we can take signs and be thankful for what the Lord has done in our lives. No matter where we might be at any point in time, Jesus continues always to be in our lives. Even in the smallest details.

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The Catholic Defender: Jesus Holy Face

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 22nd, 2016

Jesus ArgentineAccording to the miracles that have taken place in Argentina (1983-1990), this is the face of Jesus, the Holy Face of Jesus.

Gladys Herminia Quiroga de Motta, the seer of Our Lady of the Rosary of San Nicolas, stated that this picture of Jesus, is the face of Jesus.

This photo took place as a result of a miracle of the Eucharist.

It was during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) when havoc hit Spain, looters took to the streets stealing what was thought to be worth money.

Unfortunately, the Churches were broken into, so, when a priest safeguarded a ciborium containing the Consecrated Hosts by taking it home, he took a picture of it and this picture of Jesus materialized on the photo.

Ms Gladys began seeing the Blessed Virgin Mary on September 25th 1983 where Our Lady called for a “Sanctuary” to be built. As a result, miraculous healing began taking place as pilgrims flocked to Argentina. Conversions, the rapid growth of religious vocations flourished as hearts turned to God.

Our Lady warned, “Mankind is endangering the earth. Open your eyes and you will see that you are blinded pursuing illusions. Until now you have not realized this; you wanted to silence the voice of the Lord that is warning you. But now, my children, you are witnessing that God, in these days, is seeking you; go to encounter Him. Mind that the Lord is beside you. Praise be to Him.”. (Message 244)

Looking at this picture, does it not seem that Jesus is looking right at you?

Akiane-Kramarik-Prince-of-Peace-age-8Here is another image of Jesus that was given to us through believed supernatural means, this story is interesting as this painting of Jesus was through the hands of a little girl who had never had one class of instruction how to paint. Akiane Kramarik (from Morris Illinois), who at age four, claimed to see visions of Jesus, heaven, and creation.

At age four, Akiane began drawing pictures and writing poetry and claims that God was her teacher how to paint and write her poetry. In this picture she was eight years old at the time. This picture of Jesus was recognized to be the face of Jesus by another young four year old, Coulton Burbo, whose story influenced the making of the movie, “Heaven is for real”.

It is interesting to see these two pictures that have both been identified to be the face of Jesus. What strikes me looking and comparing these two pictures, what grabs my attention is the similarity of the nose. Then the eyes, this is very interesting. Jesus has longer hair in the first picture, which is black and white, in the 1930′s color photos were not readily made available. With the Akiane story, here is the drawback that I’ve been able to find. She states of her own spiritual road, “We went through being Christian, being a Catholic, we studied Buddhism. At this point every one of my siblings have their own path toward a spiritual enlightenment.”

This recalls an interesting scripture, John 14:6-10 states, ” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also; henceforth you know him and have seen him.” Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we shall be satisfied.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you do not know me, Philip? He who has seen me has seen the Father; how can you say, ‘Show us the Father? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority; but the Father who dwells in me does his works.”

Jesus is lordTo know the Son is to know the Father! Jesus is the image of the Face of God! He is the Word made Flesh that ALL might KNOW Him. The truth of Jesus is embodied in His Holy Catholic Church.

This is very important, St. John warns, “Beloved, do not trust every spirit but test the spirits to see whether they belong to God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” To say that all religions are equally the same is a particular heresy. People accept this in an attempt to respect others. We are to respect others, that is for sure, but without compromising the truth.

It is the spirit of compromise that leads to moral relevance. Jesus is Lord and He is Sovereign.

Psalms 119:135 States, “Let your face shine upon Your servant; teach me Your laws.”

St. Faustina had difficulty finding someone who could paint the image of the Divine Mercy as Christ has wanted done.  I also recall St Paul writing about “being caught up in Paradise and heard ineffable things, which no one may utter…  But I refrain, so that no one may think more of me than what he sees in me or hears from me because of the abundance of the revelations.”  2 Corinthians 12:4, 6

Is it possible that this four year old little girl, whose father was a lapse Catholic and her mother an Atheist, that despite seeing visions, the truth as a journey still needs to be discovered? In the first story, the picture of Jesus came about through a picture taken by a priest, then identified by a woman who the Virgin Mary began appearing to, which lead to thousands of miracles. To me, that is a credible support to what Gladys  proclaimed.

Turin_shroud_positive_and_negative_displaying_original_color_information_708_x_465_pixels_94_KBThe Eucharist is not simply a truth for some, that it is really up to the believer to make up their own mind. No, not at all, it is the very revelation of God so I have to maintain that any such heavenly visions especially when they claim to hear instruction from heaven, those things should reflect that truth which Christ gave his Church.

That for me is very basic, so please pray for Akiane and her family, especially in regards to their Catholic Faith. The Mass would become all the more important to anyone having true visions from heaven.

The Shroud of Turin is another important icon that is believed to be the face of Jesus. When you see the Shroud as it looks from the naked eye, we have learned that you see what seems to be a negative image. After taking a picture of the Shroud, Secondo Pia discovered this positive image that has caused great interest in the Shroud and the research done on it. The Catholic Church accepts this image of Jesus to be included as part of the devotion to the Holy Face of Jesus. Fat Tuesday, also known as “Shove Tuesday” that is–Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, was approved by His Holiness Pope Pius XII (On April 17th, 1958) as the observance of the Feast of the Holy Face of Jesus.

2 Corinthians 3:18, “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”

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The Catholic Defender: Living In The Danger Zone

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 22nd, 2016

danger zoneI have lived at the tip of the spear, I have lived in the danger zone.

I have seen scud missiles knocked out of the sky by Patriot rockets, which lit up the whole sky, and I have seen the horrors of war.

There is only so much you can do to prepare and defend yourself from attack when you are in the danger zone.

Life can be like a minefield as well with the danger of sin becoming more and more attractive.

Because of the ignorance of what sin is and does, this becomes a very important danger zone. St. John writes, “All wrongdoing is sin”, but he has more to say about sin.

Not only are we denying sin, we are about to take the holy Bible out of public libraries, the bible is politically incorrect to the mainstream liberals.

1 John 5:16 states, “If anyone sees his brother sinning, if the sin is not deadly (venial), he should pray to God and he will give him life. This is only for those whose sin is not deadly. There is a such a thing as deadly (Mortal) sin, about which I do not say that you should pray”.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASt. Paul writes St. Timothy calling the “unruly, the godless and sinful, the unholy and profane, those who kill their fathers or mothers, murderers, the unchaste, sodomites (homosexuals), kidnappers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is opposed to sound teaching, according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted” (1 Timothy 1:9-10).

St. Paul also writes, “Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators (premarital sex) nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor sodomites nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkers nor slanderers nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6:8-10).

Galatians 5:19-21 warns, “Now the works of the flesh are obvious: immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions, occasions of envy, drinking bouts, orgies, and the like. I warn you,as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God”.

Those things which St. Paul warns about are what St. John calls “deadly sin”.  Much of this that the bible addresses have become interwoven in our society.

spiritual-warfare_edited-1-710x399As a result the family institution is openly attacked and ridiculed by many in society.

Because the family unit has become weakened in our Country, this has affected the strength of the Church.

We have been riding in the danger zone for a good while now.  As a result divorce is above 50%, abortion has reached more than 60,000,000 in 38 years, pornography and sex is common place in the market place and advertising.

Recently, North Carolina passed a law allowing men who want to be women use women’s restroom’s so they can flash themselves before children.  Incredible.  If we are not in the time of tribulation and chastisement, we are certainly practicing for it?

La SaletteThe Virgin Mary gave this warning at La Salette France in 1846:

My child it is important that all those who love my Son pray for the graces of strength and perseverance at this time.

The knowledge being revealed to you children through these messages is to help you prepare.

Never feel you, as God’s army, will not be able to withstand the evil regime about to show itself in the world shortly.

Always remember the power of My Holy Rosary.

Always remember the power of My Father is the greatest power of all.

No power is so strong that it can defeat the most Glorious Power of God.

When you are a true child of God, when you come to the Father through my Son, you will be protected.

Fear is caused by the unknown but it can also be caused when the Truth is revealed.

Allow the graces which are being given to you through the Crusade Prayers to give you the peace of mind and strength of soul to march for the salvation of souls.

prayer-for-protectionThe more souls who are converted to the love of my Son, the stronger will your Crusade be.

Love one another and join in prayer to help save God’s children from the antichrist.

Pray, pray, pray that every soul will be brave enough to reject his poisonous mark.

I have revealed these atrocities to the little children Melanie and Maximin at La Salette so long ago. The time for these prophecies to unfold is soon.

These children were told of the evil plans and accepted what I told them. Now you, children, must accept that these events must take place.

You must pray hard to dilute and mitigate much of the pain which will have to be endured by humanity.

Be brave children.

Trust in my Son and allow Him the freedom to guide you as He must so that souls can be saved from the clutches of the beast.

Your beloved Mother

Mother of Salvation

GodDeepertruth is wanting to encourage the Faithful and help those living on the perimeter within the Church and to strengthen the Christian who is living in the danger zone.

There is help, God does love you and wants to reach you through his Church. He has given us so many graces and opportunities to respond to His Call.

This is a call to arms, a call to prayer and devotion. It is difficult to shield yourself within the danger zone, however, the rosary is a great weapon to fight the battle of life.

The Season of Lent is important in helping people through the Danger Zone, to take self inventory.

The Sacraments are important weapons that can totally move a nation to repentance. The Word of God can help you through the danger zone!

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The Guardian Angel: Eucharistic Miracle in St. Jack Parish in Legnica Poland 2013

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 19th, 2016

JOHN-HARDON-SJ-TRUTHFather Hardon is one of my heroes, listen to him as he speaks on the Holy Eucharist and the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Then share with those you love, the most recent Eucharistic Miracle approved THIS YEAR !!! Love and mercy to each of you, GregoryMary

The Sacred Heart is the Holy Eucharist

Why do we make this equation? What do we mean when we say the Sacred Heart is the Holy Eucharist? We begin by recalling the centuries of Church teaching on what the term “Sacred Heart” expresses. The Sacred Heart signifies Christ’s love in three ways: God is love, God is loving and God loves with human feeling.

sacred heart 1God is love. The Sacred Heart symbolizes the love that is God. From all eternity, God is love. That is the primary meaning of God as a Divine Community and not a single person. The essence of love is to give, and within the Trinity, each of the three Divine Persons from all eternity shares the divine nature that each one possesses. When we say God is love, we are defining God as that Community of three Divine Persons who, from all eternity, each share with the other the fullness of what each one not only has, but of what each one is.

God is loving. God is loving not only by bringing us into being, but by bringing us into being as creatures who are capable of love. God could of made us insects or animals or trees or lofty mountains, but these cannot think and love. When this loving God chose to create other beings, it was only because He is loving that He wanted to share what He as God had from all eternity (love) with beings who would not even exist without His love. From the moment of creation and into the endless reaches of eternity, God will continue loving us. If He were to cease loving us, we would cease to exist! God manifested His love by bringing us into existence and making us creatures who are capable of love.

Baby JesusBut God also manifested His by becoming one of us, and, having become one of us, He has remained and will be for all eternity one of us. When the Word became Flesh, It became Flesh not only for a time, but for all eternity. God will remain Incarnate forever. This loving God, who out of love for us became man and died on the Cross to show His love for us, this God became man and remains man, but He remains man on earth.

It is no exaggeration to say that the Sacred Heart is the Holy Eucharist. The Eucharist is the same Infinite Love who is God and who out of love for us became man and is here on earth. When we receive Him, that same God is within us. Love wants us to be intimate. Love wants us to be near. Love wants us to be close to the one whom it loves. The Holy Eucharist is divine genius!

margaretmaryGod loves with human feeling. The third meaning which the Church gives to the Sacred Heart as symbolizing God’s love is that God loves not only as God but also as the God-man with human feeling, human emotion, human sensibility and human sensitivity. We creatures of feeling, emotion and sensitivity need to hear this. God in the Holy Eucharist is man indeed, but with all the supreme sensitivity. Christ in the Blessed Sacrament is a sensitive Christ. He feels. St. Margaret Mary tells us that Christ in the Eucharist senses in a way we as hypersensitive human beings can understand.

Wives tell me, “I spend hours cooking the meal and all my husband does is sit down, eat and even ask for more. But he never thanks me!” Or among religious, “Father, you have no idea how much it hurts me to know that when we pass in the corridor, he does not even look at me.” How sensitive we are! How we need to know that God became a sensitive human being! When we come to Him in the Blessed Sacrament, He wants us to tell Him how we feel, and He will tell us how He feels. When we come to Church, we should not leave our heart in the car. When Christ came to earth, He did not leave His Heart in heaven.

Eucharistic Miracle in St. Jack Parish in Legnica Poland 2013

Rome, April 13, 2016: Our Most High Lord Jesus Christ, who in His Great and Authentic Mercy keeps His promise to us, His Faithful, on a daily basis: Lo, I am with you all days until the consummation of the age, Mt 28:20, has worked another Eucharistic:

Poland miracleThis Miracle, which proves the promise of Our Lord in Matthew, chapter 28, 20, is to remind us of what Our Lord said in the same passage, regarding remaining faithful to Him! The Great Commission (Mt. 28:16‑20) 16 And the eleven disciples went into Galilee, unto the mountain where Jesus had appointed them. 17 And seeing them they adored: but some doubted. 18 And Jesus coming, spoke to them, saying: All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. 19 Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. 20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.

Eucharistic Miracles also reveal that the Price or Cost to merit the Eucharist for us, WAS THE MOST BLOODY AND TERRIBLE SUFFERING OF OUR LORD IN HIS SACRED PASSION, a suffering which HE HAD TO UNDERGO out of Divine Justice on account of the Mortal Sins of mankind. For even if only one of us had committed one mortal sin, Our Lord in justice would have had to suffer the Passion and die, to make atonement for it!

Poland miracle 1This miracle was approved by Msgr. Zbigniew Kiernikowski, the Catholic Bishop of Legnica, Poland. Here are the facts, according to Paula Luckhurst: On the 25th of December, 2013, in the Diocese of Legnica a Host fell on the floor. It was put in a container with water to dissolve but after some time it turned red. The then Bishop of Legnica appointed a Commission to study the phenomenon. In February 2014, the Host which remained was a singled fragment and was deposited on a corporal. The Commission ordered the taking of samples and conduct tests by different authorities.

The Department of Forensic Medicine stated that “the histopathological tissue fragments were found containing fragmented part of the skeletal muscle. (…) The whole image (…) is the most similar to the heart muscle “(…) with the changes that “often are accompanied by the agony ” of death. Genetic studies indicate the human origin of the tissue.”

Poland miracle 2The matter was presented to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith for review. A message from the Bishop of Legnica on this matter was issued two days ago and will be read in the fourth Sunday of Easter, 17 April 2016 in all the Churches of the Diocese.

Here is another report about the Miracle, which is a rough translation by a non‑native speaker of Polish, but which we report verbatim. St. Jack’s Church is according to a commentary below, better translated at St. Hyacinth’s Church, named after a famous Polish Dominican (O.P.):

Banner with information about miracle before a press conference at the St. Jack Church in Legnica, Poland, 12 April 2016. On 11 April 2016 the Bishop of Legnica Zbigniew Kiernikowski announced the signs of the Eucharistic miracle that happened at the St. Jack Parish in Legnica during the Holy Communion on 25 December 2013 when a consecrated Host fell to the floor, was picked up and placed in a water‑filled container (vasculum). Soon after, stains of red colour appeared and former Legnica bishop Cichy set up a commission to observe the phenomenon.

poland miracle 3In February 2014, a tiny red fragment of the Host was seperated and put on a corporal. The Commission ordered to take samples in order to conduct thorough tests by the relevant research institutes. the Department of Forensic Medicine in Szczecin conducted research and announced that in the histopathological image, the fragments of tissue have been found containing the fragmented parts of the cross striated muscle, which is most similar to the heart muscle with alterations that often appear during the agony.

In a letter read in all the parishes in the diocese of Legnica Sunday, Bp. Zbigniew Kiernikowski announced the formal approval of a eucharistic miracle and granted permission to venerate the relic. According to the letter: 4/19/2016 Eucharistic Miracle Confirmed in Poland at St. Jacek parish. In order to analyze the fragment, the Commission ordered the taking of samples and conducted appropriate tests by different competent authorities. The final judgment of the Department of Forensic Medicine states: “The histopathological tissue fragments were found containing a fragmented part of the skeletal muscle. … The whole image … is most similar to the heart muscle … as it appears under the strains of agony. Genetic studies indicate the origin as human tissue.” In January this year, I presented the whole matter to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Today, according to the Holy See, I recommend that the parish priest, Andrzej Ziombrze, prepare a suitable place for the Relic so that the faithful might give it honor. I also ask for visitors to be provided relevant information and to offer thorough Catechesis to help properly form the faithful in their understanding of Eucharistic worship. Moreover, I’m ordering that a book be provided to record any graces received or other supernatural events. I hope all of this will serve to deepen veneration for the Eucharist and will profoundly impact the lives of those approaching the relic. We see this marvelous sign as a special expression of God’s kindness and love, Who so humbles Himself before man. I cordially ask for your prayers and I bless you, + Zbigniew Kiernikowski Bishop of Legnica 4/19/2016

The tissue was observed to start bleeding. Under scientific analysis, the Host was shown to be part of the heart muscle. The head of the archdiocese, Abp. Edward Ozorowski, told Catholics at Mass that the “substance of Christ’s Body or Blood has become available to the human senses, and this also happened in Sokolka.” The bleeding Host was displayed in a reliquary during a procession by the town priest, with about a thousand of the faithful following.

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