The Catholic Defender: Feast Of The Holy Trinity

Posted by Donald Hartley - May 22nd, 2016

Trinity 1“Brothers and sisters, rejoice. Mend your ways, encourage one another, agree with one another, live in peace, and the God of love and peace will be with you. Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the holy ones greet you. The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you.” (2 Corinthians 13:11-13)

The Baptism of the Lord not only begins Jesus public ministry, it reveals the Trinity as the Father says, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17).

The Holy Spirit descending “like a dove and coming upon him” (Jesus).

I wrote the following as a tribute to my Mother:

I was reading the Scripture readings preparing myself for Mass. This was the 4th anniversary of my Mother’s death and I was simply wanting to be at Mass. Everything I do in His name I want to dedicate for my Mother’s honor. I would not be where I am if it were not for my Mother. As I was reading the second reading from St. Paul to the Colossians, I read these passages:

“Brothers and sisters: If you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God”.

paulA light bulb just clicked on as I read that. The letter to the Colossians was written by St. Paul, sometime in the springtime of 57 A.D.

Jesus was crucified on April 3, 33 A.D.. By the time St. Paul was traveling, many in his audience were, by this time, RAISED from birth or early childhood in the Catholic Faith. The reference “For you have died” in Christ, implies they were already baptized perhaps many of them as children. That is what “raised” implies as to differentiate from those who were converts at an older age.

As I pondered this revelation, I realized that the truths of the Catholic Faith go all the way back to the Apostles. What a great gift we have that through the Apostolic Tradition, the truths of Christ can still be perpetuated all of the world. The Sacraments are the visible signs of Gods grace being poured forth upon those requesting them.

Baptism is one of the seven sacraments Jesus established. It grew out of the Old Testament cleansing of impurities (Ezekiel 36:25). John the Baptist, the forerunner of Jesus, began to baptize people, calling for repentance. Regarding the coming Messiah, he told the crowds, “I am baptizing you with water, but one mightier than I is coming…. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Luke 3:16)

Jesus teachingJesus prepared the apostles through three years of teaching and enlightening them to the truth of scripture, during which time He opened their eyes to His commandments. Jesus told them, “Go therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:19-20)

Baptism has always been an important sacrament. St. Peter, on the day of Pentecost, spoke to the Jews who were celebrating Passover.

They had arrived from all over the Roman Empire. The Holy Spirit moved people to accept Jesus the crucified through the words of St. Peter.

St. Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized everyone of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is made to you and your children and to all those far off, whomever the Lord our God will call.” (Acts 2:38,39)

peter 2It is clear St. Peter taught that baptism washed away sins. St. Peter makes this more clear as he writes, “For Christ also suffered for sins once, the righteous for the sake of the unrighteous, that he might lead you to God. Put to death in the flesh, he was brought to life in the spirit. In it he also went to preach to the spirits in prison (purgatory), who had once been disobedient while God patiently waited in the days of Noah during the building of the ark, in which a few persons, eight in all, were saved through water. THIS PREFIGURED BAPTISM, WHICH SAVES YOU NOW. It is not a removal of dirt from the body but an appeal to God for a clear conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 3 Vs 18-21)”.

The Catholic Church teaches that baptism takes away all sin, original sin in the case of children and actual sin of those old enough to understand the concept of sin. St. Paul described baptism this way; “we were indeed buried with Him through baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might live in newness of life.” This baptism could not be only a symbol! Christ was not raised symbolically! (Romans 6:4)

St. Paul could tell you from experience what this meant. He had persecuted the faith and was on the road to Damascus to hunt down Christians when Jesus appears to him asking, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” St. Paul ends up with the priest Ananias who states, “Saul, my brother, the Lord has sent me to you on the way by which you came, that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. Immediately things like scales fell from his eyes and his sight was restored. He got up and was baptized….” (Acts 9:17-19)

soverThe early church saw the faithful as “one body and one spirit, as you were called to the one hope of your call; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all.” (Ephesians 4:5-6). The Church as always tried to echo Jesus as he states, “Amen, amen, I say to you, no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and spirit.” (John 3:5). About baptism our Lord warns, “Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:15,16).

There are two authorized methods for water baptism. Immersion is when the believer is taken and submerged fully under water. Pouring is when water is poured to flow out and run across the head of the recipient. In both cases the water must be flowing. It is valid if the person administering baptism repeats the words; “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”

BaptismThere are three kinds of baptism. The most common form is water baptism. Usually a candidate studies the faith through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) program. This instruction helps give the candidate preparation and the opportunity to say ‘yes’ to our Lord.  Another type of baptism is related to the water.  It is called baptism of desire.  The classical case of baptism of desire is the good thief on the cross (Luke 23: 42,43).  St. Dismis would have desired salvation and baptism.  The third type of baptism is called the baptism of blood. It is a martyr’s death. Only the Lord knows how many have died for His namesake.

Division first arose in England concerning baptism. During the aftermath of the Protestant Reformation, two Lutherans, Thomas Munzer and Nicholas Storch, founded the Anabaptist movement in 1605.  They began to re-baptize their adult followers because they rejected infant baptism. Much of the protestant movement treats baptism as a symbol, and renounces its necessity. It has become a public witness the individual makes before the community.

This picture was taken by a photographer who had promised the mother of the child he would give her a copy as she could not afford a picture.

baptizzedThe practice of infant baptism began during apostolic times.

In the book of Acts, the households of Cornelius and Jason were all baptized.  About the year 250 A.D., the Church, during a council, addressed the question concerning the baptism of infants.

Should infants be baptized on the eighth day after birth, or could it be any day?  The point took issue with baptism replacing circumcision, as was the Old Testament Law.

This was done on the eighth day! To baptize on the eighth day recognized the need for baptism in the New Testament.

The Church favored any day to be appropriate but stressed the importance to baptize as soon as possible. The Catholic Church recognizes the value of symbolism in baptism, but, she maintains the function of grace and the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38, 39).

trinity“God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.” (John 3:16-18)

God the Father, the Creator, God the Son, the Redeemer, and the Holy Spirit, the Sanctify-er.

To my Mother, I thank God for you and I ask for His blessing. May you forever enjoy the happiness of heaven with Our Lord and Our Heavenly Mother! Amen!

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The Guardian Angel: The Bleeding Host Betania, Venezuela on December 8th, 1991

Posted by Donald Hartley - May 16th, 2016

Jesus I thirstEucharistic Miracles – Facts, Research, Videos

“This is my Body which will be given up for you…”

Throughout Christian history, our Lord has shown us that he is really present as the Blessed Sacrament. Most Eucharistic miracles involve incidences in which the Host has “turned into human flesh and blood”. Of course we as Catholics believe that the consecrated Host is the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of our Lord, under the appearances of bread and wine. Therefore, Jesus, through these miracles, merely manifests His Presence in a more tangible way.

Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing.’ Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord and my God!’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.‘” (Jn 20:27-29)

Eucharistic Miracle of Lanciano

HPIM1316.JPG“Take this, all of you, and eat it: This is my body, which will be given up for you.” Then he lifts the cup and says, “Take this, all of you, and drink from it: This is the cup of my blood, the blood of the new and everlasting covenant. It will be shed for you and for all so that sins may be forgiven. Do this in memory of me.”

The doctrine of transubstantiation, which is the teaching that bread and wine are converted into the actual flesh and blood of Jesus Christ, is difficult for many to understand. When Christ first told his followers of it, many rejected him believing it was an outrageous claim. But Jesus did not back down, he did not try and clarify his statement or correct their misunderstanding. He simply repeated his command to the disciples at the Last Supper. “This is My Body…. This is My Blood.” Some Christians today still have trouble accepting this teaching and don’t quite understand it. The bread and wine turn into the Body and Blood of Christ. A physical sign of the new covenant between God and Man, reminded through the sacrifice of Christ, that redemption can be had.

Eucharistic Miracles 0Throughout history, though, many people have reported miracles that brought them back to the truth. The Church has recognized over one hundred Eucharistic miracles, many of which occurred during times of weakened faith in transubstantiation. To Jesus through Mary, GregoryMary

The Bleeding Host Miracle 1991

Excerpted with permission from Daniel Sanford

The Bleeding Host Miracle occurred in Betania, Venezuela on December 8th, 1991 (The Feast of the Immaculate Conception) during the celebration of the Holy Mass at midnight. The celebrant, Father Otty Ossa Aristiza`bal, the Betania Chaplain, had just finished the Consecration, had broken the large Host into four pieces, and took one piece of the Host for his consumption and placed the remaining portions on the plate on the altar. When he looked down at the remaining Host, to his amazement he saw a red substance coming out of it which he described as if it was spurting from a wound. He placed the Host in a Chalice and put it in the Tabernacle until 6 a.m. the next morning. When he looked at it again it was still bleeding, so he placed it in a Monstrance and took it to show the people at Mass.

Bishop Ricardo of Los Teques was advised, and he had the Host tested in Caracas. He was told that the red substance was IN FACT human blood. Subsequently, the Miraculous Host was taken to the convent of the Augustinian Nuns in Los Teques for safekeeping, adoration, and visitation by pilgrims.

Betania 1Eyewitnesses saw the Host bleeding and blood accumulating on the bottom of the Monstrance. Some filmed it on their camcorders. 

Daniel Sanford of New Jersey journeyed to Betania, Venezuela from 11/12/98 til 11/15/98 on a pilgrimage with an organized Prayer Group from Medford Lakes, NJ. On 11/13/98, as part of the pilgrimage, they went to see the Bleeding Host of Betania at the Chapel of the Augustinian Nuns in Los Teques. Our Spiritual Director, Father Mazzarella, said Daily Mass.

betania 2When we finished, he opened the Tabernacle door, which contained the Bleeding Host. The Host was in flames, bleeding, and there was a pulsating heart bleeding in the center of the Host. The Group watched this for about 30 seconds or so, then the Host returned to normal.

HOWEVER, Daniel did manage to film this miracle with his camcorder!There were 10-15 other people standing next to me also taking still pictures, but, they saw nothing, and nothing was recorded on their pictures except the normal condition of the Host, seen everyday.I rewound the film right away and played it back to all present, including the Nuns, the Tour Guide, and the Bus Driver, and the tape revealed the Host just as I saw it: burning, bleeding, and a pulsating heart in the middle!

The tape was sent to the Bishop of Los Teques, Pio Bello S.J. Bishop Emeritus of Los Teques asking his advice as to what to do with the Video Vision I was given. You can view his Letter of Response on the left in the Directory.

When I spoke to him, I informed him that I would be in strict obedience to his advice and hoped what I witnessed was not just my mind playing tricks on me. His response was that “you can fool the mind, but the camera only films what it sees!”. He advised me to evangelize the True Presence, and this has been my ministry since 11/13/98 and WILL be until my last breath.

What a testimony coming from Daniel Sanford. Acts 2:17-20 says, “‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; yea, and on my menservants and my maidservants in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy. And I will show wonders in the heaven above and signs on the earth beneath…”

CameraDr. Gregory Thompson and I am honored to share these stories coming from the Bible and Our Holy Catholic Church. Jesus is the head of the Church and He continues to manifest His presence among us through the mystery of the Breaking of Bread>

“And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20

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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: The Cup of Salvation Offered At Mass

Posted by Donald Hartley - April 2nd, 2016

cupRevelation 17 is a major chapter that the anti-Catholics refer to in their attacks on the Catholic Faith.

There are several groups out there that have developed their own systems of anti-Catholic rhetoric, but they all seem to come down to these basic scriptures in Revelation with the intent of giving a base for their own self existence.

No matter how far apart that these groups diversify in their own understanding, they still have this common agreement in attacking the Catholic Faith.

I recently took a look at the colors “purple and scarlet” because of the misrepresentation people use to attack the Catholic Faith. At this time, I want to continue with another point of scripture that is used to identify the Catholic Faith with the Whore of Babylon. Revelation 17:4 says in part, “She held in her hand a gold cup that was filled with the abominable and sordid deeds of her harlotry”. Does this verse properly describe or point to the Catholic Faith?

Jeremiah 51:7 says, “Babylon was a golden cup in the hand of the Lord which made the whole earth drunk; the nations drank its wine, with this they have become mad”.

cup 2You can see why the anti-Catholic wants to tie the Catholic Faith to ancient Babylonian Paganism?

But who is this people that Jeremiah was speaking about? Who are the people of the “golden cup”?

Exodus 25:29 states, “Of pure gold you shall make its plates and cups, as well as its pitchers and bowls for poring libations”.

Was St. John aware of Jerusalem being identified with Babylon?

Revelation 11:8 He certainly identifies Jerusalem with “Sodom” and “Egypt” which were symbolic names concerning Jerusalem’s harlotry and idolatry.

The key is discovering who this “great city” is.

Revelation 16:19 states, “The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, and God remembered great Babylon, to make her drain the cup of the fury of his wrath”.

cup 3Revelation 17:18, “And the woman that you saw is the great city which has dominion over the kings of the earth.”

At the time of St. John, he would have recognized the authority of God so it is clear that he would have recognized the importance of Jerusalem to the world.

Revelation 18:10, “they will stand far off, in fear of her torment, and say, “Alas! alas! thou great city, thou mighty city, Babylon! In one hour has thy judgment come.” Alas, alas, for the great city that was clothed in fine linen, in purple and scarlet, bedecked with gold, with jewels, and with pearls! And cried out as they saw the smoke of her burning, what city was like the great city?” And they threw dust on their heads, as they wept and mourned, crying out, Alas, alas, for the great city where all who had ships at sea grew rich by her wealth! In one hour she has been laid waste. Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, So shall Babylon the great city be thrown down with violence, and shall be found no more”.

The great city is Jerusalem. St. John is clearly recognizing Jerusalem as the “Whore of Babylon“.

crucifixion-christ-diesWe see St. John identifying Jerusalem because Jesus was crucified outside the gates of the “great city” (Rev 11:8).

St. John also refers to the great city as “Babylon” that was destroyed in one hour.

The people of the “golden cup” were the Jews. With all this said, Rome was also identified with “Babylon”, Rome would be identified with the “beast” whom the Whore of Babylon drank the cup of infirmity.

The following are footnotes coming from the New American Bible from Revelation 17:

Rev 17:1-19: The punishment of Babylon is now described as a past event and metaphorically, under the image of the great harlot who leads people astray into idolatry. (Editors note: Consider Revelation 13:11 and the false prophet who leads the world to the first beast (anti-Christ). He has two horns of a lamb which identifies him with Christ, yet he speaks like a dragon, clearly apostasy).

Rev 17:1-6 Babylon, the symbolic name of Rome, is graphically described as “the great harlot”.

cup 4Rev12:2: Intercourse… harlotry: Rev 14:4 footnote says, Virgins: metaphorically, because they never indulged in any idolatrous practices, which are considered in the Old Testament to be adultery and fornication (Rev 2:14-15, 20-22, Rev 17:1-6, Ez 16:1-58, 23:1-49). The parallel passages (Rev 7:3, 22:4) indicates that the 144,000 whose foreheads are sealed represent all Christian people. The pagan kings subjected to Rome adopted the cult of the emperor.

Rev 17:3: Blasphemous names: divine titles assumed by the Roman emperors.

Rev 14:4: Reference to the great wealth and idolatrous cults of Rome. (Editors note: This is why the anti-Catholics want you to believe that the Catholic Church worships the Pope and statues. This is why they believe the Pope makes blasphemous statements against Christ).

Rev:17:8: Allusion to the belief that the dead Nero would return to power.

cup of salvationTHE CUP OF SALVATION is in THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

The Bible (Psalms 116:12) asked the very most important question, “How shall I make a return to the LORD for all the good he has done for me?”

The answer might surprise you, but how many of us over look the answer?

Is it that all we need do is make a decision to make amends?

Do we simply need to say a “sinner’s prayer”?

Do we simply find a “bible” church? What is the answer coming from the Bible?

“The cup of salvation I will take up, and I will call upon the name of the LORD.”

“The cup of salvation will I take up…” This is very important. St Paul refers to this “cup of salvation” as the “cup of blessing“, which was the third cup in the Jewish Passover meal.

It has now become the “cup of salvation” in the new and everlasting Covenant.

confession 3Consider James 5:19-20, “My brothers, if anyone among you should stray from the truth and someone bring him back, he should know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.”

This Prodigal Son will receive the “cup of salvation” once again after being restored to the fullness of truth. Consider Psalms 23:5-6, “You set the table before me as my enemies watch; You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.” There is a connection between the table of the Lord and the cup of salvation.

The Lord gives the best of himself, body, blood, soul, and divinity, so we can truly receive the “oil of gladness”.

Easter Vigil is a time of conversion, many are accepting the Lord as they come forward to receive the anointing of oil and the cup of salvation. The cup is very important during the passover meal. There were four cups used at different times during the passover. They represented the following:

cup 51 The first cup of wine is called the cup of sanctification. It is to commemorate the promise: “I will bring you out.”

2 The second cup is called the cup of plagues – the plagues that came upon Egypt – and it relates to the second promise: “I will free you from being slaves.”

3 The third cup is called the cup of redemption, where God says: “I will redeem you.”

4 The fourth cup is called the cup of completion, where God says: “I will take you as my own people.”

Notice the third cup, “cup of redemption“, that this would be the main representation of Christ who is the redeemer of mankind, that is why St. Paul refers to this cup as the “cup of blessing“.

It is this cup that is central to the Mass and our cup of salvation.

By receiving this cup, we renew the Covenant with the Lord and truly, our cup overflows.

Also notice the 4th cup, during the Last Supper, remember that Jesus did not offer the traditional 4th cup, but he saved it until the cross.

This is why the Mass is known as the “Sacrifice of the Mass”, because the Last Supper is tied into the Passion of Jesus and our redemption..

it is finishedThe cup of completion is taken literally by Jesus, “After this, aware that everything was now finished, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled, Jesus said ‘I thirst.’ There was a vessel filled with common wine. So they put a sponge soaked in wine on a sprig of hyssop and put it up to his mouth. When Jesus had taken the wine, he said, ‘It is finished.’ And bowing his head, he handed over the spirit.” (John 19:28-30)

The cup of salvation is for those who have found their salvation. For those who have picked up their cross and follows Jesus. For those who cry out to the Lord for mercy, the Lord hears the cry of the poor.

Pray for America that she will turn to the Lord who offers the Cup Of Salvation!

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The Catholic Defender: Beads Of Love

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 20th, 2016

DTB 50I have often told people that when you hold a Rosary in your hand, you are symbolically holding the hand of Our Lady. I have always had a feeling of security having a Rosary in my pocket. No matter where I have been, that continues to be so.

I Timothy 4:7-9 states, “Have nothing to do with godless and silly myths. Train yourself in godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. The saying is sure and worthy of full acceptance.”

Other biblical translations will say “devotion is of value in every way…” The Rosary, as a devotion certainly instills godliness. It is really like having a pocket bible because all of the mysteries of the Rosary come from the bible, either explicitly or implicitly.

rosary patrolAs a spiritual tool, the Rosary can give such comfort when it is applied with faith, trust, assurance. There have been times in my life when I was hanging on by a scarlet thread. What kept me going was knowing I had someone praying for me.

It is good from time to time to look back and see where you have been, how the Lord has been there with you through everything that you endure, we are not alone, but our faith is built on the reality we are promised tomorrow.

The Rosary is also a reminder of that love coming from God, that these beads are truly beads of love. Revelation 12:17 teaches, “Then the dragon was angry with the woman, and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and bear testimony to Jesus. And he stood on the sand of the sea.” We are in a spiritual warfare and Our Lady truly is Our spiritual Mother.

This dragon who is angered waging war with mankind, who stands on the sand of the sea, St. Peter states, “Be sober, be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking some one to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experience of suffering is required of your brotherhood throughout the world.” The Rosary, the beads of love is a great treasure because of it’s heavenly benefit.

ROSARY-AND-SWORD-225x224St. Padre Pio referred to the Rosary as the “weapon” that has extraordinary power against Satan. Galations 6:10-20 states, “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the equipment of the gospel of peace; besides all these, taking the shield of faith, with which you can quench all the flaming darts of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that utterance may be given me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.”

dth11Notice St. Paul tells us to “Pray at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.” This requires the action of the will regardless of the emotions. Sometimes prayer takes commitment, sometimes it takes dedication and work, but as a practice and discipline, prayer builds strength. St Jude agrees, Jude vs 20 states, “But you, beloved, build yourselves up on your most holy faith; pray in the Holy Spirit;” dedicated prayer builds strength and when times are tough, prayer is a lifesaver.

The Rosary as a prayer is one of supplication where we are literally praying with the Virgin Mary. When you see praying the Rosary like this, then the beads of love really becomes a faithful encounter with our Mother in heaven who is with Our Lord. As St. John accepted bringing Mother Mary into his house (John 19:27) we too have the opportunity to honor her in our home. Where Mother Mary is being honored, Our Lord Jesus is present.

our-lady-of-the-rosary1It is my encouragement that we lift up all prayer for the Church, for the Pope, the Bishops in union with him and all the clergy. To pray for all the faithful, the strengthening of families and our Nation.

The Rosary is Our Ladies peace plan from heaven. The Rosary is our beads of love that points to love. God is love, “So faith, hope, love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” 1 Corinthians 13:13

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The Catholic Defender: Prayer Is So Important To My Life

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 16th, 2016

CameraFrom the very beginning after I deployed to Iraq, I was in the habit of praying the Rosary every time I went out side the wire.

My Son Nathan had arraigned a song some years ago that stuck with me based from Psalms 23. I would always sing that as well.

I firmly believe the importance of prayer especially when you are preparing to go into harms way.

It was great to see our troops offering prayer before they went out on missions.

I would create a rosary group that I called “The Rosary Patrol” whose daily mission was to pray for those going out side the wire, for families separated due to the deployment, and for the needs of those present.

rosary patrolI always held my wife and family as specific prayer intentions. We were blessed to have several people across the United States who would join us in prayer. We saw amazing things take place as prayer moved mountains.

I believe this prayer devotion had an important impact on our missions as we dedicated them for our Battalion and our missions. Early December 2006 while deployed to Iraq, I was serving as a Medical Platoon Sergeant for a forward deployed CAVALRY unit. I was suppose to have 44 Medics in my Platoon but only had 25 Medics. This required that I use all assets on missions. This included myself so I ended up conducting many missions as medical support.

On one such day, I was supporting our Scouts platoons as they were conducting patrols at nearby villages. We stopped at one small village to speak with some of the leaders of the community. I was quickly called as the Shiek had a 3 year old daughter who suffered some burns due to boiling water. The burns were days old so I simply placed dry sterile wrappings on the major injuries and gave them instructions and supplies.

dthg26The people living in the village were in fear of the enemy who would attack them randomly. I spoke to one man who lost an uncle who was killed by Terrorists. When this mission was completed and we arrived back on base, I made a plan to help our Command using the Medical support provided. I went to our Battalion Surgeon with a proposal to create a kit that Medics could use specific to helping Iraqi civilians so that they would not be working out of their aid bags.

My plan was supported by Battalion and Brigade so I put the kits together with the supplies I created specific for medics in the field. I also was able to obtain Iraqi supplies so that Iraqi’s using supplies would not be caught with American supplies. That could get someone killed.

DTB 17At this time, the Iraqi Department of Health was practically non-existent as issues continued between the Sunni and Shite factions and their ancient tribal conflicts. What I developed for the medics to use to treat Iraqi civilians, became an opportunity for our Companies when they would conduct patrols surrounding the villages within our area of responsibility. Through this effort, we were able to support thousands of missions helping many Iraqi families at the medic level.

One day my Company Commander wanted me to go on a mission to see what I could do to help an Iraqi infant. It was not believed that the child would survive but they wanted me to see what I could do for the parents. The next morning I was able to see the child and thankfully I found that the child was hydrated and able to eat though she had some allergies. The baby was born with a birth defect and there was little I could do regarding that.

DTB 18What was so sad to me was the fact the parents held a lot of hope that we could do something for them. They had no hope in their capabilities. The child did survive and I would see her again on different Medical Operations we conducted. Through our work, I was able to identify some of these children and through American channels were able to get them care outside the country.

Through this effort, our participation helping Iraqi civilians soon had a marked positive influence that changed the face of the war. Soon, Iraqi volunteers began to come forward to help Americans with information of enemy activity. Attacks on Americans continued to decline as our deployment extended to 15 months. Our Battalion Commander would recognize the importance we had in helping Iraqi civilians to change their direction.

dth11I credit the rosary for many conversions in Iraq. We had many attacks where the entire engine would be blown out the vehicle but nobody recieved any serious wounds. We had many attacks upon us that nobody was hurt. More than once, it was noted that a rosary was placed at the front of the cab. Everything in front of the rosary would be completely demolished, yet everything behind it where the Soldiers were, nothing was damaged.

Prayer was the main effort of the Rosary Patrol and it still is. Thanks be to God for His grace and love. Prayer can make a difference for anyone for anything. Prayer, gotta have it!

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The Catholic Defender: Keeping The Full Court Press On The Devil

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 13th, 2016

DTHG1What a wonderful opportunity it is to speak before groups of strong Catholics out on the road.

I am so thankful that my wife, Gigi is sometimes able to participate as she did in Rangely and Meeker Colorado.

My wife and I have many times worked together in the medical field helping those who were sick.

I worked in the Emergency Room at the Blanchfield Army Hospital located at Fort Campbell Kentucky.

My Wife worked there as a Registered Nurse and many times we worked together.

That was a great blessing as I felt that we have always worked well as a team!

During my time in the Military, I was on several post/Division Championship Softball Teams. Gigi would always ensure I had the best equipment to play. I’ll always treasure those days.

catholic defenderGigi would bring out a cowbell and that was great, we always knew from the stands when we hit a home run, scored, made great defensive plays.

On cold nights Gigi would bring out her Alabama blanket she would gladly share with the Hospital Commander. Yes, those were great times.

When we were serving in New Orleans, I was the chief RCIA Instructor for the Catholic Community on the Navy Post, Belle Chasse. Our little Parish was graced to have the Bishop of the Archdiocese of the Military come to conduct Confirmation for my class. What an honor this was. Gigi would participate singing at some of our functions using her auto-harp.

Gigi can sing and play several instruments. I can barely play a button with these modern day gadgets today? This is a case of opposites attracting each other because I am not noted for my singing, even though I love to sing.

It is always a great blessing to have Gigi being able to join me for any informal talk I give such as that at St. Ignatius Catholic Church. It sure felt like the good old days.

I wanted to stress on the importance of Eucharistic Adoration in their Parish as they have a great opportunity to do so.

Eucharist 8What a blessing to learn that some of them were going to the Church at 5:00 in the morning to offer time with our Lord. That is very powerful. I gave example of various Eucharistic Miracles and how important it is for Catholics to dig deep into the truth of the Eucharist.

I also gave several examples of how important it is to strengthen ourselves in the truths of our holy Faith.

There was a great response in interest to what we talked about. It is so great to hear and listen to faithful Catholics and their stories.

That is a good reason to go where Jesus is calling us to go. It matters not if we are speaking before a large crowd or a small group. What matters is that God’s word is proclaimed and that we build strong faith.

It says in Ephesians 2:19-22 states, “So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built into it for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.”

My first deployment with HHC 3/187 was in Panama. The Jungle was an interesting place to train. You definitely did not want to mess with the wild life because that could get you killed. They have what is called the “Bush Master” a snake that is very territorial and known to be aggressive. They are also very poisonous. When you go there to the Army Base there in Panama, you will see a jar with a finger that was bitten off by one of these snakes. They kept it there for us to see so we would not mess with any of the animals.

cd !!There also is the Fer D Lance that would surprise you then kill you very quickly. These are snakes you do not want to mess with out in the triple canopy jungle. We were setting up a bivouac when we discovered one of these snakes coiled in a tree right over the First Sergeant’s hooch (poncho utilized as a tent). That was an uneasy situation. We killed it with a blank shooting an M-16 at it’s head. You had to get close to it to make that kind of kill with firing a blank. The heat was dangerous, sunburns were not a small thing there, the jungle would be very dangerous without water.

I’ll never forget one morning waking up to the news that Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait. Our training began to focus for the possibility of war. We trained extensively against Chemical attack and heat related injuries. It was reported to us that Saudi Arabia was going to be hot, 130 degrees in the shade. It was the beginning of Fall 1990, that we flew into King Fahd Airport being guided in by F-15′s. There was visibly seen about 40,000 empty body bags stacked near the runway.

That was a wake up call. This was the beginning of Operation Desert Shield. I soon discovered that the opportunity to witness for Christ was going to be incredible. I was able to speak with both Officers and Soldiers in the Saudi desert as they would come to me. I remember the Motor Pool Chief was worried that we were not going to make it home. He was raised Catholic, but had not been to Mass in years.  I was able to console him through using the witness of the Saints.   I was teaching Soldiers how to pray the Rosary, the Stations of the Cross, and read the bible as many would find time to visit me at my foxhole.

ChaplainAbout 3-4 months into this deployment, we had a Catholic Priest assigned to our unit, I was able to have daily Mass right there in the desert. We would use an MRE box as an altar. I will always cherish celebrating Mass with the Father Cerone who was assigned with us in this place. We would walk the perimeter praying the Rosary together. Hearing bombs going off in the distance and gunfire just seemed to add a greater significance.

Years later, I had transferred out of the Rakkasons and was now assigned with the Meddac on Fort Campbell. One day I was going back to the 3/187 Battalion to check on an award when I ran into one of the Soldiers I had shared the Faith with, one of those foxhole experiences. I was very interested to learn that this Soldier was getting ready to go to noon Mass at Soldiers Chapel. What a blessing it was to learn that he was received into the Catholic Faith after returning back to America.

The Popes are calling for the “Springtime of Evangelization,” and we are called to hold fast to the traditions given to us by the Apostles by oral word (Sacred Tradition) or written letter (Sacred Scripture). This is our calling, and I am so thankful for my Wife, Gigi who is God’s greatest gift to me.

Going back to my basketball days, it is very important that we keep the pressure on keeping our faith central to our life. St. Margaret Mary Alacoque once reminded us, “We can scarcely give our enemy, the devil, greater joy than when we withdraw from Jesus, who takes away the power the enemy has over us.”

I remember basic training, we learned in bayonet training that we are to never back up but to continually move forward. If you pause or hesitate, that could get you killed. I had an Uncle that received the bayonet stabbed in the hip from an on charging Japanese during a close hand to hand fight in the Pacific during WWII, he survived only because he was alert and ready.

dthg25Today we have our own battle that we must contend. St. Jude writes in verse 3, “Beloved, being very eager to write to you of our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.”

During Confirmation, you make a vow before God that you will be faithful. That you will be a follower of Jesus Christ. You might not find yourself speaking before the public, you might not find yourself in the jungles of Panama, you might not find yourself in a foxhole in Iraq. It matters not, we are to serve the Lord where ever we are planted.

Prayer is very important in keeping that full court press on the devil. The Mass, the Rosary, Eucharistic Adoration, Bible study, we need people to realize that you are Soldiers under God’s Command.

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The Catholic Defender: Jason McGlynn’s CALLING TO BE A TOWELBOY FOR JESUS

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 11th, 2016

McGlynn 4About the Author

Jason McGlynn has lived in the Atlantic City area and has worked for the FAA as a Technical Publications Editor for fourteen years. He attended Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia where he earned a B.S. degree and a MBA in management information systems.

While Jason is quite successful, his life got off to a rocky start. When Jason was born in the coal fields of West Virginia, the doctors diagnosed Jason with cerebral palsy and told his mother to forget about him because he would be profoundly retarded, basically a vegetable.

McGlynn 2Jason has been determined not to allow his struggles to stop him from living a full and productive life. Living with cerebral palsy is hard enough, but it is even more difficult when you do not have an earthly support system behind you. With the exception of his dear mother, he has always felt like a leper.

Often people ask Jason how he has managed to overcome the many adversities of his life and why he has such a positive outlook. Jason attributes his success to the three things in his life:

1. His God, who is not only at his side every step of the way, but who also gives him the determination and will needed to face whatever obstacle comes his way. The Bible verse, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” has always sustained him and given him the strength to do whatever he needs to do.

2. His mother, who is his best friend and role model. She has been there for him in every way imaginable. Not only has she dedicated her life to ensuring that he has had every opportunity possible, but she has also inspired him to write Divine Towels.

McGlynn 13. His writing, which is Jason’s greatest passion. Jason definitely does have cerebral palsy and a speech impediment to go with it. However, when Jason becomes quiet and asks the Holy Spirit to fill his heart, his speech is no longer an issue. For the Holy Spirit blesses him with an incredible gift and tells Jason word for word what to write. The words the Holy Spirit gives him are inspired; they are intended for a troubled world that desperately needs to hear them.

CALLING TO BE A TOWELBOY FOR JESUS

I had just earned my MBA and had gotten a job right out of school. By worldly accounts, I was living the American dream: working in corporate America, making a decent salary, and increasing the company’s bottom line. By worldly standards, I had a perfect life as well as a job that was quite challenging.

Although I had it made, as I sat at my desk at work, I wondered if this was as good as life got and why had God put me here. In college, I had dreams of giving back to the community and serving others. I knew I had to work to pay the bills, however, sitting behind a computer 40 hours a week just felt like drudgery and certainly didn’t seem to fulfill that longing inside of me.

McGlynn 5I felt bad for feeling like this but I couldn’t help it. I knew God had brought it to the forefront of my mind. I knew I had to deal with it and there was no use trying to push it down. At this point, I prayed, asked God for guidance and soon heard a voice say, “My son, I call you to be a towelboy.” And so after 12 years of writing the tale under the Holy Spirit’s direction, I finished.

Divine Towels is a modern-day parable where Jesus asks Ethan and his mother, Claire, to do a very special mission for Him: open a nonprofit store, called Divine Towels, where people have their feet washed. Depending on how much faith people have, they will be given healing in one form (body, mind, spirit, or soul) or another according to God’s will and in his time.

Mcglynn 6Those who are “the healed” think differently and have the uncanny ability to come up with unique solutions to complex problems. Divine Towels is a bold book that people should read. Not only will it give people a fresh perspective on life and remind them of what their priorities in life should be, but it will challenge them to have more faith and rekindle the flame of passion and zest for life that was so visible in the Acts of the Apostles.

The book stokes the embers of passion in people’s souls by reinforcing the idea that the only way to successfully bulldoze the obstacles of their lives is to trust Christ completely. When people finish reading Divine Towels, they will walk away with a renewed sense of purpose and be empowered by the Holy Spirit to devote their lives to spreading love, bearing fruit, and saving souls.

Please consider using this as a Bible study for it will remind Christians of what their role is in the world today! It revitalizes weary, tired souls, especially in a time when people feel as if they are living on autopilot and there is little hope. If you are having trouble buying from createspace, Divine Towels is available on amazon.com. **Consider using this modern-day parable as a way of making a personal spiritual retreat, small group study, discussion, or as part of a Bible study. If you are interested or have comments/questions, email the author at divinetowel1@yahoo.com or amazon.com.

Editors note: Jason McGlynn’s CALLING TO BE A TOWELBOY FOR JESUS is a great opportunity for personal growth especially as we prepare for Lent and Holy Week. Deepertruth is pleased to endorse this book. It’s a great tool the Lord can use to work in your life. Jason wants to encourage all of you with this message: God can use you no matter what your limitations might be and this work is proof!

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The Catholic Defender: Tonight On Deepertruth, Father William Korte Will Speak on Celibacy

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 10th, 2016

korte 1Tonight at 7:00 Central, Father, William Korte from Missouri will be giving us a strong teaching and understanding on celibacy. This should be a very interesting show as today there is much confusion.

St. Paul continues, “I should like you to be free of anxieties. An unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how he may please the Lord. But a married man is anxious about the things of the world, how he may please his wife, and he is divided. An unmarried woman or a virgin is anxious about the things of the Lord, so that she may be holy in both body and spirit. A married woman, on the other hand, is anxious about the things of the world, how she may please her husband” (1 Corinthians 7:32-34).

celibacy 1Matthew 19:12 Jesus says, “Some are incapable of marriage because they were born so; some, because they were made so by others; some, because they have renounced marriage for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Whoever can accept this ought to accept it.”

In an age when the Sexual Revolution and it’s effect is seen everywhere, how important is this sign of the Church coming from those who serve to maintain this expression of Faith.

Father Korte is a highly sought after spiritual director because of his guidance in helping those wanting to deepen their holy Catholic Faith.

You can listen in to the show tonight here

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The Catholic Defender At The Checkout Line At A Local Grocery Store

Posted by Donald Hartley - February 3rd, 2016

hebOne day I was at the local HEB (Grocery chain in Texas) grocery store to pick up some odds and ins for my wife who had made a quick list for me.

The store where I lived is just a couple of minutes away so I usually run up there for my wife when she needs something.

While I was going through the check out line, I was speaking with a lady who was behind me waiting her turn to check out her purchases.

I struck up a conversation with her on the importance of holding on to our Faith. She agreed with me but from a totally different perspective.

She was raised a Lutheran but had for some time claimed to be non-denominational.

She was huge in talking about the Rapture. Well, we ended up taking the discussion outside where we spoke for an hour in the HEB parking lot.

The Lady was surprised to hear a strong rebuttal from a Catholic.

She became interested in what I was telling her and I invited her to check out our website here at Deepertruthblog.com.

The next week, Sara and her Son  (changed the name)  were signing up for the RCIA and I became the Sponsor for both of them. What a great opportunity this became as they were both very involved in the RCIA.

That Easter Vigil, both of them were received into the Catholic Church. Sara’s Son received the Sacramental Grandslam, Baptism, Confirmation, and received his first Holy Communion.

heb 1What a blessing this was.

Recently her son just began college and he is very involved with the youth campus ministry. He is helping serve in the Mass. What a joy to see this taking place.

Sometimes we plant seeds, and what a grace it is to see the growth and maturity take place that is making a difference.

What a great blessing this was to watch the growth of this family in their Catholic Faith.

As we grow closer to the Season of Lent, I am reminded that this season of the Church Calender is not so ordinary.

You never know when the Lord will call you for one of those HEB experiences at the check out line.

The key is being available to do God’s will at any time a situation presents itself.

This next coming Easter Vigil will be filled with many stories that will inspire us as many more people will accept Christ in His holy Catholic Church.

There is a lot of hunger out there and many people are interested in finding something that is real, something with a strong foundation.

heb 2“Be watchful (keep your eyes open), stand firm in your faith, be courageous, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love”. 1 Corinthians 16:13-14

Proverbs 20:13: “Love not sleep, lest you be reduced to poverty; eyes wide open mean abundant food”.

Matthew 25:13 states, “Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.”

There is the constant theme that we are to keep our eyes open, to keep watch and to stand firm in our faith.

In today’s world, it seems that compromise is everywhere. People are totally all over the board not caring much for the Word of the Lord. Who is listening? Who is awake?

This is one of the important missions of the Shepherds of the Church, to stay awake and protect the flock from predators.

david (1)Young David told King Saul, “Your servant used to tend his father’s sheep, and whenever a lion or bear came to carry off a sheep from the flock, I would go after it and attack it and rescue the prey from it’s mouth. If it attacked me, I would seize it by the jaw, strike it, and kill it. Your servant has killed both a lion and a bear, and the uncircumcised Philistine will be as one of them, because he has insulted the armies of the living God” (1 Samuel 17:34-37).

Similarly, Job states, “Whoever heard of me blessed me: those who saw me commended me. For I rescued the poor who cried out for help, the orphans, and the unassisted; the blessing of those in extremity came upon me, and the heart of the widow I made joyful. I wore my honesty like a garment; justice was my robe and my turban. I was eyes to the blind, and feet to the lame was I; I was a father to the needy; the rights of the stranger I studied, and I broke the jaws of the wicked man; from his teeth I forced the prey” (Job 29:11-17).

Job went out and sought the Lord’s work. He was not apathetic to the needs around him and he was a champion to those oppressed.

Like David and Job, St. Peter and his successors are called to protect the sheep even those within the clutches of the lion and bear.

We are to stand up for the Lord’s justice against injustice, even when the evil is coming from those of authority.

wolves 1Jesus states, “Behold, I am sending you like sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and simple as doves. But beware of people, for they will hand you over to courts and scourge you in their synagogues, and you will be led before governors and kings for my sake as a witness before them and the pagans. When they hand you over, do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say. You will be given at that moment what you are to say. For it will not be you who speak but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you”

(Matthew 10:16). Consider Zechariah 4:6, “Then the Lord says, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts.”

If we had the faith the size of a mustard seed, we could move mountains, we must stay alert and keep our eyes open. To keep watch and not to let go of the wheel.

Our generation has fallen asleep, the Church is seen like a “sleeping giant”.

It is important to be open to do the Lord’s will when ever the opportunities come your way, even should that be in a check out line in a store. You never know when someone who is genuinely searching for the truth might be open to the truth through you.

It is important to strengthen true marriage, to bring back the family unit, to bring back a culture of life and respect and honor of God.

Courageous 2011 DVD English Christian Movie screenshot a christian family prayer before a mealFathers, it is time that we stand up for our Faith, to love our wives and Children.

Children are more likely to hold on their Faith when Catholic Fathers are faithful.

Over 90% of the children compared to about 35% when the Mother is trying to do it all.

We cannot continue to be a sleeping giant if we are going to have a chance of returning America back to God.

Please continue to pray for the Church, that more people will seek to start a flame. It only takes a spark to get a fire going.

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