Category Archives: Bible

Sunday Devotional: Beware of scribes decked out in finery

Mark 12:38-40

In the course of his teaching Jesus said to the crowds,
“Beware of the scribes, who like to go around in long robes
and accept greetings in the marketplaces,
seats of honor in synagogues,
and places of honor at banquets.
They devour the houses of widows and, as a pretext
recite lengthy prayers.
They will receive a very severe condemnation.”

Accusations of 88-year-old Cardinal McCarrick’s sexual abuse include:

  • Fondling an 11-year-old boy over 40 years ago when McCarrick was a priest in Manhattan, New York. The victim, now a mature man, says the sexually abusive relationship continued for two more decades. (NY Post)
  • Groping and having sex with seminarians: Six priests of the Archdiocese of Newark said that when then-Archbishop of Newark McCarrick visited the seminary, he “would often place his hand on seminarians while talking with them, or on their thighs while seated near them.” One of the priests said McCarrick “had a type: tall, slim, intelligent – but no smokers” and that McCarrick would invite young men to stay at his house on the shore or spend the night in the cathedral rectory in central Newark. Another priest, who was an aide to New York Cardinal Terence Cooke in the early 1970s, said McCarrick’s “reputation” was already well-established by that time, and that a classmate of McCarrick, the dean of a theology school, knew about the rumors and spoke about them with the other faculty and theologians very openly.” So well-known was McCarrick’s reputation that a “standing joke” was that when McCarrick visited the seminary, they had to “hide the handsome ones” before he arrived. Another priest, who worked in close proximity to then-Archbishop McCarrick in the chancery, said: “Priests would tell me ‘he’s sleeping with them’ all the time, but I couldn’t believe it – they seemed like perfectly normal guys.” Seminarians and priests from ordination classes spanning 30 years during the terms of McCarrick and his successor, Archbishop John Myers, said there was an active homosexual subculture of priests and seminarians within Newark’s Immaculate Conception Seminary. (Catholic News Agency)

Despite McCarrick’s well-known reputation of groping and “sleeping with” seminarians, the Vatican promoted him to the cardinalate and to archbishop of Washington, DC, in 2001.

On August 31, 2018, Catholic News Service, the news agency of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, published a 2006 letter from then-Archbishop Leonardo Sandri confirming that the Vatican had received information in 2000 about the sexual misconduct of McCarrick. Sandri’s letter lends credibility to accusations of a cover-up of McCarrick’s deeds at the highest echelons of the Roman Catholic Church. (New York Post)

Although McCarrick’s pedophilia had been known for some time, Pope Francis covered up for McCarrick, ignored the sanctions that Pope Benedict XVI had imposed on McCarrick, and even made McCarrick a trusted counselor in U.S. clerical appointments, including the promotion of far-Left bishops such as Blase Cupich of Chicago and Joseph Tobin of Newark to the College of Cardinals.

On July 28, 2018, after shielding Cardinal McCarrick, Pope Francis “accepted” the former Archbishop of Washington, DC’s offer to resign from the College of Cardinals, and ordered the cardinal’s suspension from the exercise of any public ministry, pending “accusations made against him are examined in a regular canonical trial.” (The Remnant)

Michael Stone reports for Patheos, Oct. 3, 2014, that police found more than 100,000 child porn videos and photos on the computer of former Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski in his office at the Holy See diplomatic compound in the Dominican Republic. Wesolowski was the Vatican’s papal nuncio or ambassador in Santo Domingo.

Wesolowski was also accused of raping numerous children in the Dominican Republic and Poland, and suspected of having sexually abused children while serving in other posts during his career — in South Africa, Costa Rica, Japan, Switzerland, India and Denmark.

After being publicly accused of procuring child prostitutes in 2013, Vatican officials secretly removed Wesolowski from his post as papal nuncio in Santo Domingo so as to avoid criminal prosecution. In September 2014, Weslowski was placed under house arrest at the Vatican in response to popular outrage after reports began to circulate that the accused child rapist was free to wander the streets of Rome. Authorities in both the Dominican Republic and Poland — Wesolowski’s country of origin where he has also been accused of sexually abusing children — wanted him extradicted to face criminal charges.

According to Vatican detectives, some of the horrors found on the former Archbishop’s computer included around 160 videos showing teenage boys forced to perform sexual acts on themselves and on adults, and more than 86,000 pornographic photos methodically archived in several category-based folders. At least another 45,000 pictures were deleted, while even more child pornography was found on a laptop Wesolowski used during his trips abroad.

Wesolowski was charged with sexually abusing minors and child porn possession; if convicted, he would face 12 years in jail. Scheduled for July 11, 2015, his trial was postponed because of an “unexpected illness”. On August 27, 2015, Wesołowski was found dead in his residence from a heart attack. (Wikipedia)

The New York Post reports that on June 22, 2017, Australian police charged Cardinal George Pell — Pope Francis’ chief financial adviser and Australia’s most senior Catholic — with multiple counts of “historical sexual assault offenses,” meaning offenses that generally occurred some time ago. Police gave no other details.

Pell, the highest-ranking Vatican official to ever be charged in the church’s long-running sexual abuse scandal, had also been accused of mishandling cases of clergy abuse when he was archbishop of Melbourne and, later, Sydney. He has denied all abuse allegations.

In late June, 2017, Vatican police raided a cocaine-fueled gay-sex party at the apartment of Monsignor Luigi Capozzi, 49. Capozzi is the secretary of one of Pope Francis’ key advisers and president of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio.

After neighbors complained repeatedly about constant comings and goings of visitors to the building during all hours of the night, Vatican police raided the apartment and found multiple men engaged in rampant drug use and homosexual activity. Police arrested Capozzi, whom Italian media called an “ardent supporter of Pope Francis,” after taking him to a clinic to detox from the cocaine he’d ingested. Capozzi is now on a spiritual retreat in an undisclosed convent in Italy. Despite his arrest, he is still listed as an active staff member on the website of the Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legal Texts.

Capozzi, who on his LinkedIn page calls himself an “expert in canon law and dogmatic theology,” managed to evade suspicion from Italian police by using a BMW luxury car with license plates of the Holy See, which made him practically immune to stops and searches. This privilege, usually reserved for high-ranking prelates, allowed the monsignor to transport cocaine for his frequent homosexual orgies without being stopped by the Italian police.

In response to the news of the police raid, Pope Francis decided to “accelerate” the retirement of Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio. At age 79, Coccopalmerio is way beyond the age of retirement of 75, but was kept on by Francis. Incredibly, Coccopalmerio had recommended Capozzi for a promotion to bishop, despite Capozzi’s previous alleged drug overdoses.

Coccopalmerio, as President of the Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legal Texts, is the Vatican’s top canonical official and one of Pope Francis’ closest collaborators and ardent supporters. Earlier this year, the Vatican’s publishing house released with much fanfare a book by Coccopalmeiro that defended Francis’s Amoris Laetitia, even though it contradicts traditional Catholic teaching. In a 2014 interview with Rossoporpora, Coccopalmerio said that while homosexual relationships are deemed “illicit” by the Church, Catholic leaders, such as himself, must “emphasize” the “positive realities” that he said are present in homosexual relationships:

“But if I see that the two persons truly love each other, do acts of charity to those in need, for example … then I can also say that, although the relationship remains illicit, positive elements also emerge in the two persons. Instead of closing our eyes to such positive realities, I emphasize them.”

In November 2018, a highly-placed Vatican source with direct knowledge, who must remain anonymous for fear of reprisal, tells LifeSite that Pope Francis knows of Coccopalmerio’s presence at the cocaine homosexual “party”.

In March 2017, reports surfaced that Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, in 2007 when he was a diocesan bishop, had commissioned a homosexual artist to paint a gigantic blasphemous homoerotic mural in his cathedral church of the Diocese of Terni-Narni-Amelia in Umbria, central Italy.

The mural that covers the opposite side of the façade of the church portrays Jesus carrying nets to heaven filled with writhing naked and semi-nude homosexuals, transsexuals, prostitutes, and drug dealers. The image of the archbishop himself is depicted among those in the nets.

Not coincidentally, Paglia also defended Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetitia on allowing adulterers and others living in mortal sin receive the Eucharist, which reinforces the suspicion of many that the real intent of Amoris Laetitia ultimately is to legitimate homosexuality.

Meanwhile, the AP reports on February 25, 2017 that, ignoring advice from the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, “Pope Francis has quietly reduced sanctions against a handful of pedophile priests, applying his vision of a merciful church even to its worst offenders in ways that survivors of abuse and the pope’s own advisers question.”

Jeremiah 23:1-2

Woe to the shepherds
who mislead and scatter the flock of my pasture,
says the LORD.
Therefore, thus says the LORD . . .
against the shepherds who shepherd my people:
You have scattered my sheep and driven them away.
You have not cared for them,
but I will take care to punish your evil deeds.

Jesus, I love You with my whole heart, my whole soul, my whole mind, and with all my strength.

May the peace and love of Jesus Christ our Lord be with you,

~Eowyn

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Sunday Devotional: WWG1WGA

Mark 12:28B-34

One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him,
“Which is the first of all the commandments?”
Jesus replied, “The first is this:
Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is Lord alone!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul,
with all your mind,
and with all your strength.

The second is this:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
There is no other commandment greater than these.”
The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher.
You are right in saying,
‘He is One and there is no other than he.’
And ‘to love him with all your heart,
with all your understanding,
with all your strength,
and to love your neighbor as yourself’
is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding,
he said to him,
“You are not far from the kingdom of God.”
And no one dared to ask him any more questions.

Throughout the three years of Christ Jesus’ public ministry on Earth, the Hebrew élites of scribes, rabbis and priests (especially Pharisees) continuously doubted, probed, and tested Him with questions that were meant to trick and entrap. The above passage from Mark 12 was such an instance, as is Matthew 22 which chronicles another test when the Pharisees asked Jesus “which is the great commandment in the law?”.

In both instances, Jesus answered that the first and greatest of all God’s commandments is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.”

As Mark 12 recounts, afterwards no one among the Hebrew scribes dared ask Jesus any more questions because they knew He is incontestible, and that Moses himself had said the same thing in Deutoronomy 6:2-6:

Moses spoke to the people, saying:
“Fear the LORD, your God,
and keep, throughout the days of your lives,
all his statutes and commandments which I enjoin on you,
and thus have long life.
Hear then, Israel, and be careful to observe them,
that you may grow and prosper the more,
in keeping with the promise of the LORD, the God of your fathers,
to give you a land flowing with milk and honey.

“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD alone!
Therefore, you shall love the LORD, your God,
with all your heart,
and with all your soul,
and with all your strength.
Take to heart these words which I enjoin on you today.”

With unassailable reasoning and crystal clarity, our Lord clears away the thicket of Judaic laws and rules that had accumulated and encrusted through the centuries by getting to the heart of the matter.

Think about it: If we love the Lord our God with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our mind and with every ounce of our strength, then we would obey and be true to His other laws and commandments for the simple reason that we love Him.

The Ten (Commandments) follow the One (Greatest Commandment), logically and naturally.

To borrow a current motto: WWG1WGA!

See also the opposite of the Greatest Commandment of all, “Sunday Devotional: Narcissism, the first and greatest sin“, and this post on why Jews don’t believe in Jesus the Christ.

May the peace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you!

~Éowyn

Better than Drudge Report. Check out Whatfinger News, the Internet’s conservative frontpage founded by ex-military!

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Read The Signs

Sodom Road Signs

Would you buy a house on this road?

We sometimes drive past this location in beautiful Westport, Massachusetts. When I see it I chuckle, sometimes make a remark, and generally bore the other people in the car with my attempted humor.

But think about it. If there was a beautiful house and property for sale here, with an amazingly affordable price, would you overlook some misgivings about the implications, and snatch it up? Before you say, “Of course! I’m no idiot,” consider someone else who did exactly that. (Genesis 19)

Abraham’s relative, Lot, did something similar. He and Abraham had greatly prospered, so much so that they needed to go separate ways in order to not crowd each other. Lot requested the land near Sodom because it was better than the land Abraham was on. Abraham said said okay, and they split up.

Sweet deal! Great land! Lots of room! And for a low price!

But certain things were not right with this place. It was filled with people who were so violent, murderous and perverted that no stranger could pass through in safety. So bad in fact that God sent 3 angels to get Lot out so they could deal with the monsters who lived there. They extracted Lot and his family, and rained fire and sulfur on Sodom, leaving nothing alive.

So my question is, “When you are living on Sodom Road, do you feel okay about the presence of an Angel Shop and good deals on Firewood?”

Sodom Road Signs

Just asking…

 

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Sunday Devotional: ‘Master, I want to see’

Mark 10:46-52

As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd,
Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus,
sat by the roadside begging.
On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth,
he began to cry out and say,
“Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.”
And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent.
But he kept calling out all the more,
“Son of David, have pity on me.”
Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.”
So they called the blind man, saying to him,
“Take courage; get up, Jesus is calling you.”
He threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus.
Jesus said to him in reply, “What do you want me to do for you?”
The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.”
Jesus told him, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.”
Immediately he received his sight
and followed him on the way.

The blind man said to our Lord: “Master, I want to see.”

What about the spiritually blind?

Ezekiel 12:2

[Y]ou are living among a rebellious people.
They have eyes to see but do not see
and ears to hear but do not hear,
for they are a rebellious people.

And when a people are rebellious, with eyes that do not see and ears that do not hear, the result is the upside down world we live in where evil is called good, and good is called evil (Isaiah 5:20) because the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers” (2 Corinthians 4:4).

We were amply warned by prophets and saints for the times in which we find ourselves. Humans are experts at lying. Every day and in every way, we find yet another case of monumental deception. See:

So how do we acquire the eyes that see — the spiritual sight that penetrates the dark webs of deception that surround us?

How does one go from “I was blind and now I see“? (John 9:25)

The answer is Christ.

Always.

May the light of Jesus Christ our Lord be with you!

~Eowyn

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Sunday Devotional: On suffering, the human condition

Hebrews 4:14-16

Brothers and sisters:
Since we have a great high priest
who has passed through the heavens,
Jesus, the Son of God,
let us hold fast to our confession.
For we do not have a high priest
who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses,
but one who has similarly been tested in every way,
yet without sin.
So let us confidently approach the throne of grace
to receive mercy and to find grace for timely help.

To suffer is to be human — suffering is the human condition.

If you find that unacceptable and demand an explanation, it’s right there in Genesis 3 — in the account of our first parents’ deliberate defiance of God’s explicit instruction, imagining in their preening grandiosity that they can become “like gods”.

But the exercise of free will is not free of consequences. As God had forewarned Adam and Eve, the issues of disobedience were dire indeed. By their fall, a door was opened to chaos; henceforth a price must be paid for being human. Where once was joy and ease, there would be suffering, hardship, and pain. The control of the soul’s spiritual faculties over the body is shattered, and humanity becomes vulnerable to the ravages of sickness and disease, and eventual death.

And yet, narcissists that we are, when we are in the throes of suffering, we lament and wail “Why me?,” as if we alone should be spared from the universal human condition.

Millions of Americans suffer from chronic pain. In 2010, a poll by the American Osteopathic Association found that nearly 70% of Americans said they or someone they cared for had experienced pain. The same poll found that, perversely, 34% of Americans found that the side effects of pain medications are worse than the pain itself.

But researchers have found pain reducers that are not opiates or pharmaceuticals. The website Cracked has an article on six things other than drugs which temporarily reduced pain. Beginning with the least, the six are money, eating, music, imagination, touch, and religious faith.

Researchers found that religious, specifically Christian, faith is the most powerful non-pharmaceutical pain reducer.

As reported by Gary L. Wenk, Ph. D., in Psychology Today:

In a recently published study in the journal Pain, scientists (Wiech and colleagues) measured pain perception in two groups of people, devout practicing Catholics and professed atheists and agnostics, while they viewed an image of the Virgin Mary or the painting of Lady with an Ermine by Leonardo da Vinci. Devout Catholics reported feeling more peaceful and compassionate when gazing upon a picture of the Virgin Mother. The devout Catholics also perceived electrical pulses to their hand as being less painful when they looked at Mary than when they looked at the lady in the painting by da Vinci. In contrast, the atheists and agnostics derived no pain relief while viewing either picture.… MRI scans demonstrated that the Catholics’ pain relief was associated with greatly increased brain activity in a small area located on the bottom left of their right prefrontal cortex. In contrasts, the atheists and agnostics demonstrated no response in this brain area. There was already ample evidence to suggest that this brain region is involved in controlling our emotional response to sensory stimuli, such as pain. Perhaps this study has, in fact, now shown us the location of the placebo effect.

Much has been written about the value of the placebo effect in the practice of medicine, but how this effect emerges and whether it can be controlled are issues that not yet understood…. Numerous meta-analyses (which are later analyses of other researchers’ data) have shown that only the perception of pain can be statistically demonstrated to be influenced by our minds, which scientists refer to as the emergent property of our brains. The impressive influence of our thoughts and expectations on how we experience pain is a true placebo effect.

If gazing upon a painting of the mother of Jesus reduces pain, how much more powerful would fixing our eyes and minds on the suffering Christ on the cross. As St. Paul reminds us in Hebrews 4:

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has similarly been tested in every way.

In other words, no one better understands and empathizes with our suffering than Jesus. So, when you are wracked with pain, physical or emotional, look to our Lord on the cross and ask for His help.

He always answers. Really.

I leave you with the very wise words written more than 5 years ago by Joan, a contributor to Fellowship of the Minds who doesn’t write anymore because her body is broken, with constant excruciating pain from hereditary osteoarthritis, notwithstanding spinal and two knee-replacement surgeries:

All of us suffer and in different ways according to our individual situations. That is the human condition….

One of the effects I have experienced is that suffering helps us to become “Little”, and I say this with a capital “L” to emphasize that I have found it has brought me closer to Our Lord in that I come to Him as a little child most dependent upon Him.

One needs only to look at a Crucifix and embrace Jesus completely because of the greatest act of love ever given — His horrible suffering and death upon the Cross to save us from our sins and to open the gates of heaven for everyone. We need not be morbid for each of our individual experiences with suffering, because then our suffering is offered to Jesus with a poor attitude. I have also found that a sense of humor really helps, because sometimes, when it rains, it pours, and we cannot figure out what is happening. The otherwise little things and chores we try to do become trying and monumental….

But really, we simply must say, “Jesus, I Trust In You,” in every juncture of our lives. Remember what Jesus said, “Take up your cross and follow Me.”

It is no secret that I love the angels and the saints, members of the Church Triumphant. Below are some thoughts about suffering from your family in heaven which might assist you in your individual suffering:

“To suffer much, yet badly, is to suffer like reprobates. To suffer much, even bravely, but for a wicked cause, is to suffer as a martyr of the devil. To suffer much or little for the sake of God is to suffer like saints.” – St. Louis-Marie de Montfort

“An unpitied pain wins greater merit beofre God. Never say to God: ‘Enough’; simply say, ‘I am ready!’” -Bl. Sebastian Valfre

“Christ tells us that if we want to join Him, we shall travel the way He took. It is surely not right that the Son of God should go His way on the path of shame while the sons of men walk the way of worldly honor.” – St. John of Avila

“Reason should dominate pain, for our Redeemer has sanctified pain and by so doing has given us Christians a right way of facing it. For us, pain does not come to hurt and destroy but to raise to the heights.” –Bl. Placid Riccardi

“I shall remind myself of the labors He undertook in preaching, of his weariness while traveling, of the temptations He suffered while fasting, of His vigils while praying, and of the tears He shed out of compassion. I will remember, moreover, His sorrows, and the insults, spittle, blows, ridicule, rebukes, nails, and all the rest that rained down upon Him in abundance.” -St. Bernard of Clairvaux

“Say always, ‘My beloved and despised Redeemer, how sweet it is to suffer for you.’” -St. Alphonsus Liguori

Jesus, the Second Person of the Triune Godhead, willingly suffered and died for us as reparation for the terrible sin of our first parents, because sin — every sin — requires atonement to make things right again.

But the sin of Adam and Eve must have been so monumentally catastrophic that it tore the very fabric of the Universe. No man (human) can atone for this monumental sin. Only God can — and did.

We, too, can make our suffering redemptive for our sins and those of others. Offer it to Jesus — join your suffering to Him. And don’t compare your suffering to others because each person has a Cross to bear. But if we join our suffering to Jesus in sincerity, with a contrite heart, our suffering will become sanctity and joy.

Isaiah 53:11

Because of his affliction
he shall see the light in fullness of days;
through his suffering, my servant shall justify many,
and their guilt he shall bear.

May the peace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you,

~Eowyn

See also:

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Sunday Devotional: Pray for Wisdom

Wisdom 7:7-11

I prayed, and prudence was given me;
I pleaded, and the spirit of wisdom came to me.
I preferred her to scepter and throne,
and deemed riches nothing in comparison with her,
nor did I liken any priceless gem to her;
because all gold, in view of her, is a little sand,
and before her, silver is to be accounted mire.
Beyond health and comeliness I loved her,
and I chose to have her rather than the light,
because the splendor of her never yields to sleep.
Yet all good things together came to me in her company,
and countless riches at her hands.

Wisdom is defined as:

  • “The ability to think and act using knowledge, experience, understanding, common sense and insight (Dictionary.com).
  • “Capacity of judging rightly in matters relating to life and conduct; soundness of judgement in the choice of means and ends” (Oxford English Dictionary)

In other words, wisdom isn’t simply intelligence or knowledge. It is the ability to use our intelligence, knowledge, and experiences to think and act and make choices that are beneficial and productive.

Wisdom is considered to be an important, if not the most important, virtue by many traditions:

  • The ancient Greeks personified wisdom as the goddesses Metis and Athena.
  • The ancient Romans personified wisdom in Minerva, who represents skillful knowledge and the virtues, especially chastity.

In Christianity, wisdom is one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit:

  • The book of Proverbs, believed to have been written by King Solomon, primarily focuses on wisdom, giving direction on how to handle our relationship with God; the viccissitudes of life — of marriage, finances, work, friendships and persevering in difficult situations.
  • St. Paul said there is both secular and divine wisdom, and urged us to pursue the latter: “the wisdom of this world is folly with God” -1 Corinthians 3:19. 
  • St. Thomas Aquinas considered wisdom to be the “father” — the cause, measure, and form — of all virtues.

In the past, U.S. public school teachings included character education, which Benjamin Franklin called training in wisdom and virtue. Sadly, along with the Constitution and America’s founding history (see “Only 1 in 3 Americans could pass a U.S. citizenship test”), our taxpayers-funded schools no longer teach and instill character and wisdom.

King Solomon believed wisdom comes from God and begins with fear of God:

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight” -Proverbs 9:10

“For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding” -Proverbs 2:6.

“He holds success in store for the upright, he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, for he guards the course of the just and protects the way of his faithful ones” -Proverbs 2:7-8.

Pray to God for wisdom!

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight” -Proverbs 3:5-6.

“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” -James 1:5

May the peace and love and wisdom of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you,

~Eowyn

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Sunday Devotional: Thanking God for Supreme Court Justice Kavanaugh

Isaiah 8:6-7, 10, 15, 17

Because this people has rejected
the waters of Shiloah that flow gently…
Therefore the Lord is bringing up against them
the waters of the River, great and mighty….
Form a plan, it shall be thwarted;
make a resolve, it shall not be carried out,
for “With us is God!”….
And many among them shall stumble;
fallen and broken;
snared and captured….
I will trust in the Lord….

Despite the Left’s plotting and scheming, malicious slander and unproven accusations, lies and deception, threats and intimidation, yesterday Brett Kavanaugh, a pro-life Christian, was confirmed and sworn in as the 114th Supreme Court justice.

Psalm 100

A psalm of thanksgiving.

Shout joyfully to the Lord, all you lands;
serve the Lord, with gladness;
come before Him with joyful song.
Know that the Lord, is God,
He made us, we belong to Him,
we are His people, the flock He shepherds.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving,
His courts with praise.
Give thanks to Him, bless His name;
good indeed is the Lord,
His mercy endures forever,
His faithfulness lasts through every generation.

And may the peace and love of Jesus Christ our Lord be with you!

~Eowyn

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Today is our Guardian Angels’ feast day!

Today is the feast day of our Guardian Angels!

A 2007 Harris poll found that 74% of U.S. adults believed in angels.

How do we know that each of us has a guardian angel? Because Jesus tells us so!

“See that you despise not one of these little ones: for I say to you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father who is in heaven.” -Matthew 18:10

The word “angel,” in Greek is angelos, in Hebrew is malach, in Arabic is mala’ika– which all mean “messenger.”

Angels are incorporeal (without body, material form or substance) spiritual beings who act as messengers and intermediaries between God and humanity. St. Augustine said that although Angels are defined by their function as messengers or message-bearers, their activities are not limited to just this function. Messenger is one of their functions, not their nature.

St. Thomas Aquinas maintained that each Angel is unique, a species unto itself — truly a mind-boggling idea. (J.R.R. Tolkien probably had angels in mind when he fashioned the Ents, who are each a species unto itself.) That means each Angel is truly an individual, with his own personality and quirks. This may explain why some guardian angels are pro-active, while others are not.

Major philosophers — such as the great medieval theologian Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274), René Descartes (1596-1650), John Locke (1632-1704), and most recently, the American philosopher Mortimer Adler (1902-2001) — have put forth compelling reasoning for the existence of Angels. (For the conversion of Adler, a Jew, see “A philosopher-pagan comes home: The conversion of Mortimer Adler“.)

Theologians maintain there is a hierarchy of Angels, their belief stemming from allusions in both the Old and New Testaments (Genesis 3:24; Isaiah 6:1-7; Ezekiel 1, 10; Romans 8:38; Ephesians 1:21, 3:10, 6:12; Colossians 1:16, 2:10, 2:15) to “seraphim,” “cherubim,” “thrones,” “dominions,” “mights,” “powers” and “principalities” in the “heavenly places.”

Dionysius the Areopagite and St. Thomas Aquinas delineated three hierarchies of Angels, and three orders within each hierarchy, totaling nine orders in all:

  • 1st hierarchy: Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones.
  • 2nd hierarchy: Dominions, Virtues, Powers.
  • 3rd hierarchy: Principalities, Archangels, Angels.

Of the nine angelic orders, five are sent by God for external ministry among bodily creatures, as indicated by their names of Virtues, Powers, Principalities, Archangels, and Angels—all of which refer to some kind of administrative or executive office. Of these five orders, only the last three minister to human beings:

  • Principalities are in charge of the whole of humanity.
  • Archangels minister to nations — their leaders and those persons whom God tasks with special work to do on Earth.
  • Angels, the last order, are God’s messengers to and guardians of individual human beings.

According to St. Thomas Aquinas, a guardian angel is appointed by God’s loving providence to each human being from the moment of birth because “the dignity of human souls is great.”

Throughout the lives of “changeable and fallible” human beings, their guardian angels assist them toward goodness. Although the guardians never fail or forsake their human charges, they eschew interfering with Divine providence or with our free will to commit sin if we so choose and to suffer punishment.

When I see a drunk or derelict sleeping on a bus bench or curled up in a street corner, I can’t help but wonder how very sad their guardian angels must be. Imagine what it must be like to be the guardian angel of a serial killer . . . .

In Summa Theologica, St. Thomas also wrote that at the end of a human being’s earthly life, the guardian angel of the virtuous person will be replaced with an angelic companion because the guardian’s mission will have been successfully discharged. What a wondrous thought — that our guardian angel who has known and loved us all our lives will be our friend and companion through all eternity!

But the wicked in Hell “will have a fallen angel [or demon] to punish him” for eternity. Let that thought sink in . . . .

Just because we can’t see them doesn’t mean our guardian angels aren’t with us all the time. In fact, there are many stories of angelic encounters and assistance. See, for example:

My days are so busy with blogging and family-, house- and garden-work that the only time when my mind is at rest is when I walk in the hills. On one such walk several years ago, I talked to my guardian angel and humbly asked him to show me he’s there. Instantaneously, I felt his presence walking alongside me, on my right. I can’t tell you what he looks like (he is a bodiless spirit after all), but what I felt was his staggeringly-profound LOVE — a love that is unconditional and wholly unearned, the depths of which I have never (and will never) experienced from any human.


Here’s a simple prayer to our guardian angels, by St. Bonaventure (1221-1274):

Angel of God, my guardian dear,
to whom His Love commits me here,
ever this day be at my side,
to light and guard,
to rule and guide. Amen.

Talk to your Guardian Angel!

He loves you very, very much, more than you’ll ever know.

Tell him you love him.

And thank your Guardian Angel today and every day — for watching over and protecting you, and for loving you in spite of ourselves.

~Eowyn

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Sunday Devotional: ‘Whoever is not against us is for us’

Mark 9:38-42

At that time, John said to Jesus,
“Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in your name,
and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow us.”
Jesus replied, “Do not prevent him.
There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name
who can at the same time speak ill of me.
For whoever is not against us is for us.
Anyone who gives you a cup of water to drink
because you belong to Christ,
amen, I say to you, will surely not lose his reward.
Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin,
it would be better for him if a great millstone
were put around his neck
and he were thrown into the sea….”

The above passage from Mark 9 precisely addresses two of the many things that afflict the Catholic Church today.

The first is the clergy’s pedophilia and child sex abuse, and their superiors’ enabling of those criminal acts. See “Catholic Church in Crisis: Pedophile cardinal; Pennsylvania priests abused 1k children; homoerotic church service”.

Fr. Gary Thomas, the exorcist portrayed in the movie The Rite, calls the pedophile priests scandal “demonic” and predicts worse is yet to come, which brings us to the second thing in the passage from Mark 9 which afflicts the Church today — the clergy’s allergy to any mention of devils and demons.

Although priests are supposed to address the Gospel reading of the day in their homilies, how many priests today will actually make mention of demons, demonic possession, and that Jesus had given them authority to drive out demons? In my experience of many years, homilies that actually do that number but a handful.

The pusillanimous avoidance of all mention of devil, demons, and Hell by too many priests and ministers may account for why Americans increasingly no longer believe in the devil.

A 2013 Harris Poll found that Christian beliefs had declined:

  • Although a majority (74%) of U.S. adults still said they believed in God, that’s down from the 82% who had expressed such a belief in earlier years.
  • 68% believed that Jesus is God or the Son of God, down from 72%.
  • 65% believed in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, down from 70%.
  • Only 58% believed in the devil and Hell, down from 62%, which implies that those who believe that Jesus is God but do not believe in the devil or Hell must think Jesus either lies or is a fantacist. In either case, whether Jesus lies about the existence of demons or that he believes in and promotes a fantasy, then Jesus cannot be God.

“The finest trick of the devil is to persuade you that he does not exist. (La plus belle des ruses du diable est de vous persuader qu’il n’existe pas.)” -Charles Baudelaire’s Le Joueur généreux, 1864. How can we armor ourselves against the Devil if we don’t even believe he exists? No wonder Americans increasingly are debauched and depraved. (See “Satanism as a new political movement in America”)

As for Jesus’ instruction that “Whoever is not against us is for us,” it calls to mind a recent exchange I had with a reader on my post, “One-world-government Walter Cronkite: ‘I’m glad to sit at the right hand of Satan“.

In my post, I quoted from a speech that Cronkite gave on October 19, 1999, at the United Nations, in which he espoused a one-world government, which he maintained had been obstructed by “a handful of willful senators” who “pander to and are supported by the Christian Coalition and the rest of the religious right wing.” Then Cronkite said:

“Their leader, Pat Robertson, has written in a book a few years ago that we should have a world government but only when the Messiah arrives. (Derisive laughs from the audience.) He (Robertson) wrote, ‘Any attempt to achieve world order before that time must be the work of the devil.’ Well, join me. I’m glad to sit here at the right hand of Satan.” (Audience applause)

The reader suggested that Cronkite and Hollywood celebrities who speak “casually about ‘sitting at Satan’s right hand’ and such statements” are either joking or “spiritually ignorant” in that they “don’t really know what they’re saying” and don’t actually believe in Satan or in God.

Jesus’ reminder that “Whoever is not against is for us” tells us that those like Cronkite who mock Christ and Christians are not “for us”, but are against us, no matter their feigned jocularity. We should, therefore, regard them with wariness and caution.

May the peace and love of Jesus Christ our Lord be with you!

~Eowyn

See also “Invoking the name of Jesus Christ repels demons/alien abduction“.

Please follow and like us:
0
 

Sunday Devotional: ‘Let us beset the just one, because he is obnoxious to us’

Wisdom 2:12, 17-20

The wicked say:
Let us beset the just one, because he is obnoxious to us;
he sets himself against our doings,
reproaches us for transgressions of the law
and charges us with violations of our training.
Let us see whether his words be true;
let us find out what will happen to him.
For if the just one be the son of God, God will defend him
and deliver him from the hand of his foes.
With revilement and torture let us put the just one to the test
that we may have proof of his gentleness
and try his patience.
Let us condemn him to a shameful death;
for according to his own words, God will take care of him.

Matthew 27:39-43

And they that passed by reviled him,
wagging their heads, and saying,
Thou that destroyest the temple,
and buildest it in three days, save thyself.
If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross.
Likewise also the chief priests mocking him,
with the scribes and elders, said,
He saved others; himself he cannot save.
If he be the King of Israel,
let him now come down from the cross,
and we will believe him.
He trusted in God;
let him deliver him now, if he will have him:
for he said, I am the Son of God.

God is outside space and time.

And thus the incarnation, persecution, mocking, and death-by-crucifixion of Jesus, the Son of God, had been amply foretold in the Old Testament. The above passage from chapter two of the Book of Wisdom is but one example.

Here are some more:

Isaiah 7:14

Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

Numbers 24:17

there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.

Micah 5:2

But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

Jeremiah 23:5

Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.

Zechariah 9:9

behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.

Zechariah 11:12

So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.

Psalm 22:1, 16, 18

My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
they pierced my hands and my feet.
They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.

Jesus, I love You with my whole heart, my whole soul, my whole mind, and with all my strength.

May the peace and love of Jesus Christ our Lord be with you!

~Eowyn

Please follow and like us:
0