DAILY CATHOLIC     FRI-SAT-SUN     December 18-20, 1998     vol. 9, no. 245

GETTING TO THE HEART OF THE MATTER

To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO and SECTION THREE


    INTRODUCTION      "Getting to the Heart of the Matter" is what Sister Mary Lucy Astuto pinpoints in every issue when she takes a common sense approach to living our faith with her practical columns. In this issue, she relates the events of the past few days and signals a warning of more ill-will to come if we are not of "good will" in the sense God intended when he dispatched the angels to Bethlehem to announce to the shepherds and the world that a Savior was born to us - One Who had come to bring Peace. She points this out in her column PEACE ON EARTH???.

         Her column, along with columns by Father Stephen Valenta, OFM Conv., provide effective, vital insights into our faith and ways of fulfilling God's Will every day in every way. You can visit Sr. Lucy at her web site for Heart of Mary Ministry at http://www.heartofmaryministry.com or you can reach her at Srmarylucy@aol.com by e-mail.


PEACE ON EARTH???

          The bombing of Iraq resumed this week. I thought of us being close to Christmas and how the angels sang on that first Christmas night: “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace among men of good will.”

          In one of Our Lady’s messages from Medjugorje, she said that people long for peace in a world where there is no peace. Perhaps more than ever, at this time, Our Lady’s words ring true.

          In 1988, Our Lady told Father Gobbi that in ten years, it would all be “over with.” That means by 1998

          One thing I do feel strongly about, and I hope I am wrong, is that the bombing of Iraq could be the beginning of an escalation of bombing and suffering by the involvement of other countries.

          When I was a child in grade school, I was told the story of Our Lady’s appearances in Fatima. I was taught that Our Lady said that if we do not pray the rosary and make sacrifices for sinners, there would be a third world war and whole nations would be destroyed. She also said that war is a punishment for sin. (The Lord knows that our world is more sinful than ever and that it cannot continue in this way of darkness without God permitting us to suffer greatly, due to our own sins, or without God directly intervening to “wake this world up.”)

          When hearing this, as a child, I wondered then if a third world war might involve China. After all, they have the largest number of people within a nation, a strong army that is veritably disciplined.

          Could the bombing of Iraq bring other countries into the fray? I think it could and in light of the fact that China and Russia have both condemned the action of the United States in bombing Iraq, I would not be surprised, if in some way, they (and especially the Chinese), will be involved and that a third world war could develop.

          We live pretty complacently, don’t we? We feel very distant from any suffering like that endured by innocent people of Iraq. We don’t think that kind of suffering would ever “hurt” us. Perhaps we have developed a movie mentality. That is, the violence we see in movies have somehow hardened us to the real violence in our world.

          I don’t know! I hope I’m wrong.

          In the bombing of Iraq, it is possible that we do not begin to know how much we’ve “bit off.” Maybe far more than we can chew.

          In the last week prior to Christmas, it is a sad thing that I write this kind of article. The word Our Lady of Medjugorje has said most to us is: “PRAY!” If we aren’t doing enough of that, WE MUST START. Forget all that Christmas shopping. Give your family and friends the gift of Masses and prayer!

          Not enough for you? Maybe the day is coming soon enough when we will BEG people to pray for us and the material things of this world won’t begin to have the importance to us that they do now.

            DEAR GOD, AS A CHRISTMAS PRESENT TO US, GIVE US THE GRACE TO LOVE EACH OTHER AS YOU LOVE US.

          God bless us, everyone!


December 18-20, 1998       volume 9, no. 245
GETTING TO THE HEART OF THE MATTER by Sister Mary Lucy Astuto

DAILY CATHOLIC

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