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Showing posts with the label St. Paul

Saint Peter and Saint Paul's Feast Day

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Today we celebrate the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul (formerly considered a day to honor all twelve apostles). We honor Saint Peter, the first Pope, and Apostle to Jesus, as well as Saint Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles.
Saint PeterIt was to Saint Peter that Jesus declared that whatever Peter and the Apostles determined to be bound on earth would be bound in Heaven, and whatever is loosed on earth would be loose in Heaven (Matt 16:19); and with that Jesus bestowed upon Peter, as the first Pope, the keys to Heaven. Peter came from humble beginnings and grew to become a fisherman, until that day when he met Jesus, and after that became a “fisher of men.” With a simple style of humble means, Peter grew in courage and perseverance, wisdom and understanding to become the first leader of the Church as Christ’s successor, and to this day, through apostolic succession, the line of leadership as Peter’s successor remains unbroken. Saint PaulIt was to Saint Paul that Jesus paid a visit, afte…

Spiritual growth right where you are now

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I remember reading long ago in The Spiritual Combat by Dom Lorenzo Scupoli, that we deceive ourselves if we think we would be holier if only our exterior circumstances were different. That made a great impression on me.

Temperamentally, some people feel they are in control of everything. Others feel like they are controlled by forces outside themselves. Melancholics can especially fall into this second attitude, feeling sorry for themselves and powerless to change their circumstances. St. Paul encourages such people:
God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.” (2 Tim 1:7) Even when we are powerless to overcome our circumstances, God is not. Indeed, as both Paul and St. Therese tell us, our weakness can actually be an asset.

Continue reading at Contemplative Homeschool.

Does God work for good in our sins?

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The second reading from Sunday’s Mass included a favorite verse of mine, Romans 8:28:
We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose. The newly ordained priest who said Mass at Holy Trinity Cathedral preached that God works for good even in our sins. Do you believe this? I do, firmly! So did St. Therese of Lisieux.
Today I’d like to examine St. Paul’s teaching on this subject, and what it means for our spiritual lives.
What can separate us from God? St. Paul writes:
For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)
I have heard Catholic apologists preach on this passage, noting that Paul did not include “sin” in his list. Sin, they argue, can separate us from God, so that’s why Paul did n…

Blogging Through a Haze of Self-Doubt

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I'm sure that every Catholic blogger has asked themselves at least once why they do it. Is it really worth the time spent away from work, from family, from prayer? Is anybody listening? Does anybody care? One of my friends recently shut down his personal blog altogether, saying "While I have a lot of respect for many bloggers, I feel the blogosphere to be a net negative to the Catholic Faith.  ... It is the epitome of Francis' 'self-referential Church.'  Far from leading to a deepening of the faith, it has led to a corrosion of it." Could this be true?

My friend's words certainly don't describe the work of CatholicMom or any mommy blogger I know. But I've seen the corner of the Catholic blogosphere he describes -- the place where people attack one another viciously over minute points of doctrine or liturgical practices that baffle non-Catholics and fail to bring anyone to a holier and more peaceful frame of mind. I regularly engage in verbal fist…