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August 6, 1998
SECTION ONE   vol 9, no. 153
To print out entire text of Today's issue, print this section as well as SECTION TWO
It's time to cut the talk, and walk the walk!
As part of our summer service to readers who may not have had the opportunity to read the earliest chapters of our on-going megaseries on the Church today, we repeat the early installments bringing you the fifth installment in which we address the fact that talk is cheap if we do not back up our actions with solid faith. Lukewarm won't do or we will be flushed to the wolves. We must be attuned to our faith both in deed and knowledge for we cannot evangelize the sheep without the proper tools for there are many wolves lurking about. For the fifth installment, click on WHERE IS HOLY MOTHER CHURCH HEADING AS WE NEAR THE MILLENNIUM?.
ARE WE WILLING TO WALK THE WALK?
In part four, we discussed which path we would take - the one strewn with roses which ultimately leads to hell,
or the narrow road, filled with thorns. If we are truly Catholic and in unison with the Will of God then there is no
question which path we will take. Now the question is, as we begin the long path up Calvary: Are we willing to
walk the walk?
We've all read Sacred Scripture. With all Catholics deep into Lent, anticipating Holy Week and the glorious
Resurrection on Easter Sunday, we turn constantly to the Word in our liturgy. But as we listen to the lector
enunciating the Old Testament readings, or the priest imparting Christ's Words from the Gospel, do we truly
comprehend the meaning? Jesus left us a promise that cannot fail: "And behold, I am with you all days, even unto the consummation of the world" (Matthew 28:20).
Our humanity is such that we take this statement, tuck it into our brain, and conclude that God takes care of His
One, True Church, and thus we don't have to be bothered with doing anything to ensure that our faith continues
along the straight and narrow path. If we think that, we're playing right into the enemy's hands. The problems
inherent in the Church today with all the confusion regarding liturgy, liberal doctrine, and, yes, heresy came
about over the last 30 years because we assumed everything being implemented was sanctioned by the
Magisterium. Only when it was too late did we realize these drastic changes that has entirely changed the face
of Catholicism as cradle Catholics knew it, was not implemented or recommended by the Council Fathers at
the Second Vatican Council. Rather liberal factions, most lay lobbyists with financial influence over this bishop
or that bishop, were able to clandestinely manipulate others to accept such radical alterations that caused a
mass exodus in numbers from the true faith in the 70's and 80's. Many of those who didn't leave, gave in to the
peer pressure of others not to fight "city hall" and so, little by little the liturgical corrosion ate away until it was
firmly entrenched and rooted in almost every diocese and parish. With that in place, it didn't take long for
aberrations to raise their ugly head with the dawn of the "cafeteria" Catholic - one who opts to pick and choose
which doctrines they will follow, while completely disregarding the others. How, then can these people call
themselves Roman Catholics? At least in the days of the Reformation, those who disagreed with the Church
stated emphatically that they were no longer Catholic and began to give their sects every name under the
sun...but not, unfortunately under the Son.
As the Millennium approaches it becomes more and more apparent that we have not been faithful in our
obedience to God, and thus to His Vicar on earth, the Holy Father Pope John Paul II, and those popes who preceded him. The sweeping changes falsely attributed to the Council Fathers have been well documented as
being a well-maneuvered ploy by modernists and liberal theologians to do away with obedience and inundate
the faithful with a New Age mentality leading to a "do your own thing" type of religion that, as we said earlier,
bears no resemblance to the Church founded by Christ. Yes, in the last thirty years the Roman Catholic faith
has become so watered down as to bear, in some parishes and dioceses, no allegiance with the Catholic faith
per se. In many other parishes and dioceses our Roman Catholic Faith has taken on the mirror-image of our
protestant brethren, and in this the countless souls involved have become lukewarm, confused and even
"turned off" to the Catholic Faith as a whole. Issues once black and white have become a myriad shade of gray,
causing more confusion and the "cafeteria-style" Catholics who pick and choose those areas of obedience
which are "easy" and compatible with their epicurean, if you will, lifestyle.
With this in mind we take you back to the passage of Matthew 28:20 and realize Jesus is still with His Church
because God's promise is one that cannot be broken. But, though we are sheep, God expects us to recognize
the wolves in sheeps' clothing. He expects us to do do our part, for that's where faith, hope and love come in.
But have we really done as much as we could? How many times do we shrug it off and say it's better not to get
involved. When we do that, we are lumping ourselves with the "lukewarm" whom God said in Apocalypse 3:16,
"Because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I am about to vomit thee out of my mouth." Those are mighty harsh words that we, as Catholics, don't want to hear. But, if we don't stand up now and ask to be counted among those who will stand for Jesus and His One, Holy, Apostolic and Catholic Church we could find
ourselves being counted among the dreaded lukewarm.
The title of this series is "Where is Holy Mother Church heading as we near the millennium;" it could very well be
where are we as individuals heading as we near the millenium for we are the Church - we are all part of the
Mystical Body of Christ. He is the Head, we are His members. But to be His arms and legs, we have to be
willing to walk the walk, not just talk the talk.
That walk will ultimately take us up Calvary where we can only hope to be nailed to the Cross of Christ. If not,
how can we expect to be lifted up to be with him? There is no Resurrection without the Crucifixion. As we near
that time in the liturgical year when that is the focus of our life, let us remember what Lent means and
remember also the words Jesus conveyed in Matthew 16:24-27, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him
deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For he who would save his life will lose it; but he who
loses his life for My sake will find it. For what does it profit a man if he gain the whole world, but suffer the
loss of his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For the Son of Man is to come with
with His angels in the glory of His Father, and then He will render to everyone according to his conduct."
These are truly words to ponder during this Lent. Is one's agenda that which a person takes the easy way out
and opt for the world's way by trying to conform the Church to the world through a politically correct agenda of
inculturation into the Church? If so, could our Lord be speaking about those who would force man's will over
God's will in these matters? What about us? Do we stand among the few who would lose our lives for Jesus'
In the next installment, we will examine one of those who does exemplify these virtues: our Holy Father, the
Successor of Peter, the Vicar of Christ and the one who guides us as our true shepherd. If we do not pattern our
lives on what he advocates, and proudly count ourselves among those walking with this living saint, then all the
talk won't do a bit of good. If we're not willing to walk the walk, we might as well pack it in because the journey
won't take us very far. All the talk in the world won't help when we try to con our way into Heaven if we can't back it up with action now...inspired by the Holy Spirit.
God's Divine Mercy still keeps satan at bay - for now!
That is the essence of the Blessed Mother Mary's words in her 173rd and 174th messages to the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart, which we bring you today. Our Lady urges her children to continue to pray and to turn to the Light of her Divine Son Jesus before the spiritual darkness completely envelops us. Only prayer and penance will illuminate our way. Click on "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..."
Messages One Hundred Seventy-Three and Seventy-Four
Message One Hundred Seventy-Three, March 30 1992
Mother Cabrini Shrine in Golden, Colorado
(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)
Beloved Hidden Flower, I am with you. I beg of you to tell all of my little ones that God Almighty has sent me to bestow great graces upon all mankind, if only their hearts are open. Tell them to be open to the Holy Spirit and when the call is heard within the heart they are to come to me at the Holy Mountain in Golden where I desire to restore virtue to the world.
Beloved Hidden Flower, tell my children that the moment of great darkness approaches, that the spiritual darkness of the world is complete. Yet through the faithful living of my messages by my little ones satan does not reveal himself before mankind and Divine Mercy may still shower forth.
Tell them that as you knelt in prayer at the holy place at Mother Cabrini Shrine you felt throughout your entire body the trembling of the mountain. Tell them that you heard my Son say to you:
"Go, tell my children that the earth shall tremble before the justice of God, and then shall come the great golden light which will be the beginning of the reign of the Sacred Heart."
Tell them that He will obliterate the darkness and all who are faithful shall see Him, the glorious King. But before the Triumph will come the fulfillment of all I have foretold, which is in Sacred Scripture.
Say to my little ones that I love them with all motherly affection and I am pleading with them to convert their hearts now.
I love you, my children, without exception. Persevere and be at peace, for I, the Mother of God, shall remain among you as long as God permits.
Hear my words. Pray! Pray! Pray! The time is urgent.
I give you God's peace. Thank you for responding to my Call!
Message One Hundred Seventy-Four, April 4, 1992
(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)
Beloved Hidden Flower, say to all my children everywhere without exception: Now, as never before the voices of all my little ones to whom I speak shall be persecuted as never before, for the demon seeks to ruin all of mankind. I, the Mother of God, Queen of Peace, Mary Immaculate, shall not cease in my mission. I will continue to speak to my humble little ones. I shall speak to many more. By God's authority I solemnly promise great graces, great inner miracles that shall convert hearts and souls so that my Immaculate Heart may triumph.
Woe to those who persecute my little ones, seeking by every clever word of human origin to refute the Divine Wisdom which God imparts to His chosen ones.
Woe to those who lead my little ones away from the Truth, refusing to see the glorious joy in giving oneself to God completely. In this act of total faith lies absolute trust and heartfelt Love, given by God. Through the giving of self all heaven rejoices as the ranks of my little army swell, supported by my Heart and the Sacred Heart of my Son.
To all my little ones I exhort you to greater depths of prayer and unceasing sacrifice. Be not concerned about the welfare of your bodies. Look only at Jesus and unite your soul to Him.
I implore all my little ones to be faithful to the Holy Father, my beloved son and to pray for him, my Martyr of Peace. I solemnly tell you the tide of persecutions shall reach unprecedented heights, and many of those vowed to my Son shall be the darkness which shall help to bring the great apostasy into full view by all the world.
Hear my words and know that the Way of the Cross is the Way of Joy for all who truly love and serve my Divine Son.
I solemnly tell you that the Justice of the Almighty is ready, and it can no longer be held back. My little ones, increase your prayers. Seek always the grace of the Holy Spirit. In this way you shall remain faithful, fearing nothing though all the world shall hate you; all the world shall persecute you.
I solemnly tell you I weep because I have been with you, pleading, encouraging and you have half-heartedly responded. Now is the moment to decide. Convert now and trust in my help. I love you. I bless you. I am the Mother of God, Queen of Peace. Hear me, o my children, for soon my Divine Son shall return as Judge in all His glory.
Thank you for responding to my Call
LITURGY OF THE DAY
Today is the glorious feast of THE TRANSFIGURATION OF THE LORD, while tomorrow is the feast of Pope Saint Sixtus II and his martyred companions as well as the feast of Saint Cajetan, priest and religious founder. For the liturgy, readings and meditations and vignettes on these feasts, click on LITURGY FOR THE DAY.
Thursday, August 6, 1998
First Reading: Daniel 7: 9-10, 13-14
Psalms: Psalm 97: 1-2, 5-6, 9
Second Reading: 2 Peter 1: 16-19
Gospel Reading: Luke 9: 28-36
FEAST OF THE TRANSFIGURATION OF THE LORD
One of the manifestations of Jesus Christ's deity was the glorification of His appearance before His
Resurrection. As the accounts of Matthew 17: 1-8; Mark 9: 1-8; and Luke 9: 28-36 describe while praying with
His chosen Apostles Peter, James and John on the mountain, Jesus' "face shone as the sun, and His garments became white as snow." Then He was transfigured before them, and Moses and Elias or Elijah joined Him. The Apostles intuitively knew there was no need for fear as Peter remarked to his Master, "Lord, it is good for us to be here." It was truly prophetic for Peter showed his personality in this passage as he meandered on about erecting three altars to the three in the Transfiguration. It gives us a glimpse of the thinking behind the one who would be chosen to lead Christ's Church for Peter, along with the other two Apostles who heard the Father confirm Jesus' mission with the words, "This is My Beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased; hear Him." After that, as if in a trance, the Evangelists tell only that the three Apostles fell on their faces - so in awe of this vision that the next thing they knew Jesus Himself was touching them, the Transfiguration over, beckoning them to "Arise, and be not afraid." Jesus knew no one else would understand what had just transpired and so counseled the three to tell no one of this event until AFTER the Resurrection when they would clearly understand that "Truly He was the Son of God" (Matthew 27: 54). Jesus also felt it was important for them to witness this event in order that when they later would see Him suffer, it would sustain them in knowing that He was truly God and would rise. As we know it was these same three Apostles who accompanied Jesus to the Garden of Gethsemani where they showed their frailties by falling asleep. Also, it was the impulsive Peter who seemed to forget the Transfiguration vision while he cowered in the courtyard denying Our Lord. The etymology of Transfiguration is derived from the Latin trans which means "change" and figura meaning "figure" which Jesus did indeed do, His countenance changed before the Apostles' very eyes as did His figure which became very agile providing proof that a glorified body can move rapidly from one place to another like the speed of light or sound. This was confirmed in Luke 24: 31, 34, 36 when the Evangelist places Jesus on the road to Emmaus and then "vanished from their sight", then immediately he was inside the upper room "stood in their midst." The doors were locked, yet besides agility, Christ possessed "subtility" which allows a body to go
where it pleases without any resistance to material matter. Thus He was able to pass through walls as light
streams through glass.
Friday, August 7, 1998
First Reading: Nahum 2: 1, 3; 3: 1-3, 6-7
Psalms: Deuteronomy 32: 35-36, 39, 41
Gospel Reading: Matthew 16: 24-28
FEAST OF SAINT SIXTUS II, POPE AND COMPANIONS
Very little is known of Pope Saint Sixtus II. This Grecian-born pontiff, elected on August 30th, 257, was the twenty-fourth successor of Saint Peter. He possessed a meek disposition but was not afraid to settle the disputes that had arisen under his predecessors Pope Saint Cornelius, Pope Saint Lucius I, and Pope Saint Stephen I. It was Sixtus who effected the translation and identification of the mortal remains of St. Peter and Saint Paul. The Romans captured Sixtus while he was celebrating the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in the catacombs and was immediately beheaded to discourage others. It had the opposite effect as Saint Cyprian wrote as he originated the exclamation now part of the Mass - "Deo Gratias". Many companions willingly joined Sixtus in martyrdom on August 6, 258. Sixtus' body was retrieved and given an appropriate burial with a church being built in his honor a century later after the liberation by Constantine. Another church was eventually built over the original one and early in the 13th Century it was given over to Saint Dominic who bequeathed it to his Order of Preachers. It gradually became a cloistered monastery for Dominican nuns. Today, known as the church of St. Dominic and St. Sixtus, it is located in the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas.
FEAST OF SAINT CAJETAN, PRIEST AND RELIGIOUS FOUNDER
Born twelve years before the discovery of America, Saint Cajetan would go on to be a staunch defender of the faith in the face of Martin Luther's attacks against the Church. This holy canon lawyer was appointed protonotary apostolic and secretary to Pope Julius II in 1505 twelve years before becoming a priest in 1517. Realizing the Church needed universal and radical reform as assessed by the Fifth Lateran Council, he stayed near the Vatican while bringing the order he had helped foster with John Peter Carafa. This was the Company of Divine Love which was founded by Saint Catherine of Genoa in that city, and dedicated to caring for the poor and infirm. Cajetan was instrumental in establishing a hospital in Rome and later one in Vicenza where he became the pastor of St. Mary's in 1520. Three years later he returned to Rome to found the Institute of Clerks Regular with the charge of preaching, administering the sacraments and celebrating the liturgy. They became known as the Theatines with their first Superior General being Bishop Carafa who sent St. Cajetan to fend against Lutheranism in Venice in 1536. Upon Carafa's death, St. Cajetan returned to Naples where he was elected the Order's Superior General. Over and over he strove to pacify the unrest in Naples and the worldliness of its inhabitants. Beaten down by the discord and apathy, he died in 1547 at the age of 67 before he could realize the fruits he had sown which would become evident at the Council of Trent.
PRAYERS & DEVOTION
Today's prayer is in honor of the Transfiguration with a prayer attributed to Cardinal John Newman:
May Christ support us all the day long, till the shadows lengthen, and the evening comes, and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over and our work is done. Then in His Mercy may He give us a safe lodging, and holy rest and peace at last with the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit and all in the Church Triumphant.
July 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message
Dear children! Today, little children, I invite you, through prayer, to be with
Jesus, so that through a personal experience of prayer you may be able to discover the beauty of God's
creatures. You cannot speak or witness about prayer, if you do not pray. That is why, little children, in the
silence of the heart, remain with Jesus, so that He may change and transform you with His love. This,
little children, is a time of grace for you. Make good use of it for your personal conversion, because
when you have God, you have everything. Thank you for having responded to my call.
For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE
Click here to go to SECTION TWO or click here to return to the graphics front page of this issue.
August 6, 1998 volume 9, no. 153 DAILY CATHOLIC