Ash Wednesday is a day of Fasting and Abstinence
WEDNESDAY     vol. 11, no. 48     March 8, 2000


March 8, 2000

      Walking the Way of the Cross this Lent
Stations of the Cross and Lenten Reflections        

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Ash Wednesday

First Reading:
 Joel 2: 12-18
  Psalm 51: 2-6, 12-14, 17
Second Reading:
 2 Corinthians 5: 20-21; 6: 1-2
  Matthew 6: 1-6, 16-18


  Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent when the Church charges us to put on the mantle of penitence for forty days and forty nights through the Passsion and Death of Jesus in preparation for His glorious Resurrection. We receive ashes to remind us of the temporary vessels that we are. Tomorrow is Thursday after Ash Wednesday and the optional Feast of Saint Frances of Rome, religious. For the readings, liturgies, meditations, and profile on St. Polycarp, see DAILY LITURGY.


"But when thou prayest, go into thy room, and closing thy door, pray to thy Father in secret; and thy Father, Who sees in secret, will reward thee."
Matthew 6: 6

The Gospa's message for February
February 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message
During Lent, except on and a few days after the 25th, we will link the Message. Therefore to read it, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE

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  • On the way to Calvary...
      Ash Wednesday is the beginning of the Lenten Journey that will take us through forty days and forty nights of penitence, sacrifice, prayer and almsgiving leading up to the Passion and Death of Our Lord and His glorious Resurrection. Each day during Lent, the DailyCATHOLIC will bring you a special reflection prayer complemented by the Stations of the Cross. Today, we also explain the origins of Ash Wednesday. See LENTEN REFLECTIONS

    Pro-Life Prescriptions:

    Pro-abort politicians can sugarcoat abortion and women's rights all they want, but it's still: MURDER!
    Abortion is Murder
      Today Dr. Frank Joseph pulls no punches in telling it like it truly is. Abortion, partial-birth abortion, third trimester abortions all fall into one category not covered or protected by Roe vs. Wade: Murder. He is appalled how few Catholics recognize this as a direct contradiction to the teachings and doctrines of the Church and by their silence, tacit approval or opposition to pro-life causes, are contributing to satan's agenda. Dr. Joseph points out that few of the politicians today are bold enough to speak out against the atrocities of the procedures used in abortuaries and equates this with America's rapid slide into depravity for it is all talk and no one's willing to walk on behalf of the innocent unborn who are treated with less regard than laboratory animals. For part one of his stark, frank column There's no other term for it: Abortion IS Murder! , see Pro-Life Prescriptions: LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL!

    In-fighting, ill-advised advice, greed and the lust for power prove fateful for the Third, Fourth and Fifth Crusades
    The zeal for Crusades turns into resentment throughout Europe     Today, in our on-going series of this abridged History of the Mass and Holy Mother Church over a 2000 year span called 2000 YEAR VOYAGE ON THE BARQUE OF PETER, we cover the latter part of the twelfth century from the Third Crusade through the ill-fated Fifth Crusade, also known as the "Children's Crusade" in the early part of the thirteenth century. The period covers spans four good Popes who sought to restore Holy Mother Church after the schisms and antipopes of the recent past. During this time the Sacred Conclave elected first the oldest Sovereign Pontiff ever to be chosen - Pope Celestine III followed by one of the youngest ever - Pope Innocent III. For Installment thirty-nine The Third, Fourth and Fifth Crusades, see BARQUE OF PETER

    Appreciation of God's gift of Baptism to wash away Original Sin
        Today we continue with our new series in the search to uncover the wonderful treasures of the Church contained in the great Deposit of Faith. Today we present the second part of the catechesis on Original Sin as explained in My Catholic Faith and how in the forbidden "apple" the worm of Original Sin was washed away by redemption through Christ's victory of the Cross. For part two in the 126th installment, see APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH

    Events that happened this Weekend in Church History
    Pope Celestine II   On this date 856 years ago in 1144 A.D. Pope Celestine II, the 165th successor of Peter, passed on to his Heavenly reward after a short but rewarding pontificate. He depended greatly on the holy Saint Bernard of Clairvaux who helped settle the internal differences in the Church by ending a series of antipopes placed on the throne illegally by the German Holy Roman Emperors. Celestine also elevated to the cardinalate the future Pope Celestine III, the oldest Pontiff to ever be elected. For other time capsule events that happened in Church history on this date, see MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES

    It takes a giving heart which needs to care for others!
    Famous quotes of Bishop Fulton J. Sheen    They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but the words of Bishop Fulton J. Sheen have been known to launch a thousand images in one's mind, one of the ways this late luminary did so much to evangelize the faith. Because of the urgency of the times and because few there are today who possess the wisdom, simplicity and insight than the late Archbishop who touched millions, we are bringing you daily gems from his writings. The good bishop makes it so simple that we have dubbed this daily series: "SIMPLY SHEEN".

    "Many a man when he was poor had a heart that was open to every call of pity, but as riches increased he set his heart more upon them. The massing of wealth has a peculiar effect on the soul; it intensifies the desire of getting. What is often lust in youth is avarice in old age. Could they but expose themselves to the great joy of giving and respond to pity's claim, they would sense the great thrill in benevolence. "

    with a Catholic slant

    News Ticker from Catholic World News For more from CWN and other Catholic wire services, see stories below

    "Mea Culpa" Sunday is not intended to bash the Church but rather serve as a cleansing
       Preparing for the First Sunday of Lent this coming Sunday, the Vatican has released a more detailed description of the ceremony that will take place when Pope John Paul II as the authorized Vicar of Christ begs pardon for all the sins committed in the name of God throughout the centuries. The ceremony is significant in the history of the Church and must be understood in the light in which the Holy Father intends, rather than a finger-pointing exercise of which many non-Catholics view it as an opportunity to bash the Church. continued inside

    Cardinal Ratzinger clarifies the new document "Memory and Reconciliation" in preparation for "Mea Culpa" Sunday
    Cardinal Roger EtchegarayCardinal Joseph Ratzinger    The Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and head of the Jubilee Committee Cardinal Roger Etchegaray briefed reporters Tuesday on the new document "Memory and Reconciliation: The Church and Faults of the Past" and clarified that the purpose is to ask God forgiveness for those faults and sins of the past, all in humility, while not acknowledging errors which have not been demonstrated historically but radical groups are calling for inclusion such as homosexual groups and pagan organizations - all intended to point the blame at the Church and which the Holy See have disgarded as frivolous because of those reasons. continued inside.

    Ash Wednesday and the tradition of Lent catching on with Protestant sects as well.
      Recognizing the tradition within the Roman Catholic Church regarding Ash Wednesday, a number of Protestant churches are observing this day and the season of Lent with a renewed respect. In the past many of these churches have tended to ignore the significance of this time of year due to the breakaway from the Church nearly 500 years ago. But, with the Holy Father's invitation for ecumenical dialogue, many are more open-minded and like minded in honoring Christian tradition. continued inside.

    Bush gets backing of National Right to Life Organization in push to elect a pro-life president
       The Federal Election Commission reports that the National Right to Life Committee has spent a considerable amount of money backing presidential hopeful George W. Bush in opposition to all other viable candidates. Because Alan Keyes has lagged so far behind in votes, they chose to throw their support to Bush who is solidly pro-life compared with the questionable intents of John McCain. They would never consider backing Al Gore because of his staunch pro-abort stance and culture of death platform. continued inside.

    Benedictines reviving an ancient tradition
       The Benedictine institution of St. John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota is reaching back to one of their proudest trades of their order to preserve a tradition that has been lost in the last 500 years. That is undertaking the first hand-written illuminated Bible since the invention of the printing press. The work, begun by Calligrapher Donald Jackson, is expected to take four years, with the first volume due to be completed by the end of this year. Brother Dietrich Reinhart, OSB president of SJU, has said that this work revives the monastic tradition and allows artists to use their gifts for the glory of God. continued inside.

    More evidence found as to Shroud of Turin's authenticity
      New scientific studies regarding the Holy Shroud of Turin have found significant evidence of botanical traces that place this august material in the geographical area of Israel or Jordan, giving substance to the argument that it is authentic. More tests will be performed before the Shroud is placed on public display in Turin this August for the Jubilee Year.continued inside.

    Worldwide prayer urged to stop abortion and help alleviate ravages of war in Africa and elsewhere
    IrelandThe Congo    In Ireland there is a campaign to recruit one million pledged rosaries to be prayed to end abortion and it is catching on enthusiastically throughout Ireland, the US, Canada, and Portugal. Meanwhile missionaries from Italy working in the Democratic Republic of the Congo are developing a chain of those pledging to fast and pray throughout the world from today through April 8 with a formal procession to end at the Roman Colisseum on April 8th to atone for all sins and ask God's mercy in stopping the devastating wars and natural disasters that have ravaged many parts of Africa. continued inside.

       For more headlines and articles, we suggest you go to the Catholic World News site at the CWN home page and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and the Dossiers, features and Daily Dispatches from ZENIT International News Agency CWN, NE & ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC, but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday - Friday.
    Coming Thursday:

    • Another thought-provoking, conscience-tweaking column by Pat Ludwa in his VIEW FROM THE PEW

    • The Pope's latest message in THE VICAR OF CHRIST SPEAKS

    • The 127th installment on the treasures of the great Deposit of Faith in our daily series APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH

    • Time Capsules in Church History focusing on March 9th

    • LENTEN REFLECTIONS for March 9th and the Way of the Cross

    • Another gem from SIMPLY SHEEN

    • DAILY LITURGY for Thursday after Ash Wednesday and the Optional Feast of Saint Frances of Rome plus Friday after Ash Wednesday.

    • ...and much more in our 49th issue for 2000!

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    March 8, 2000     volume 11, no. 48   Front Page