December 18, 1997 vol 8,
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Starlight, Starbright - such a Star the world has never seen!
From Moses until now there had never been a star so bright and poignant in the annals of astronomy. This mystical star, placed by the Almighty, signaled to all the arrival of the Messiah. In the east a small group of intellectual rulers, known as the Magi, knew in their hearts what the star meant. They saw it in the distance and made plans to travel in search of where it led. They did not know exactly what they would find, but they knew they would know when they found it. History records they did indeed find "It" - the grace of God in the person of the Son of God on Whom they lavished priceless gifts. As we near His birthday, let us all lavish the one gift we have - a total fiat to His Will through prayer and compliance to all His Church teaches. The Liturgy of the Mass helps us fulfill this. Following are today and tomorrow's liturgy and the third prayer of the nine day novena before Christmas. THIRD DAY OF CHRISTMAS NOVENA: "O Adonai, and Ruler of the house of Israel, Who didst appear unto Moses in the burning bush, and gavest him the law in Sinai, come to redeem us with an outstretched arm!" (Add an Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be) Click on LITURGY OF THE DAY
THURSDAY, December 18, 1997
First Reading: Jeremiah 23: 5-8
Psalms: Psalm 72: 1, 12-13, 18-19
Gospel Reading: Matthew 1: 18-24
FRIDAY, December 19, 1997Friday, December 19:
Third Friday of Advent
First Reading: Judges 13: 2-7, 24-25
Psalms: Psalm 71: 3-6, 8, 16-17
Gospel Reading: Luke 1: 5-25
PRAYERS & DEVOTION
For the Advent Novena Prayer and all prayers up until today, click on ADVENT Novena Prayers
December 18, 1997
St. Joseph, your work has brought barely enough income for you and Mary, and you have made what you can from your carpenter's shop to provide for the care of the Child Jesus. You see that Mary is in good health and you are relieved, yet you, too, desired to provide for her. Help us, St. Joseph, to realize that God is our Father and desires also to provide for us His children, if only we allow Him. By our obedience may we shun the wickedness of the world, all its glitter and false promises, and rely only on our Heavenly Father for our every need.
NEWS & VIEWS with a Catholic slant
Abortion at forefront of today's news
There's good news and bad news on the abortion front. The bad: In Brazil a judge ruled a twelve year-old could have an abortion, while in New Jersey the ACLU and Planned Parenthood in are pulling out all the stops to prevent yesterday's legislation to ban partial-birth abortions, overriding the pro-abort bill pushed by Governor Christie Whitman. Stay tuned. The good: The new pro-life administration in the Pope's beloved homeland of Poland is ready to outlaw abortion totally. For this click below, for the other abortion stories click the CWN logo below the third article. Click on Poland to read more.
POLAND READY TO MAKE ABORTION ILLEGAL AGAIN
WARSAW (CWN) - Poland's new center-right parliament began
debate on Wednesday over the repeal of a law that allowed
most abortions for almost any reasons including economic
The pro-abortion law was passed in 1993 while the
parliament was controlled by the ex-Communist Democratic
Left Alliance (SLD), but elections last September swept the
pro-Catholic, pro-life Solidarity Election Alliance (AWS)
into power again. AWS is seeking to return to the old law
that allowed abortion only when there is serious danger to
the life or health of the mother, when the pregnancy is the
result of a crime, or when there is irreparable damage to
the unborn child.
The 1993 law, which was further liberalized in 1996 to
allow even more abortions, was declared unconstitutional by
the Constitutional Tribunal which said the amended law
clashed with the guarantee of the right to life. The lower
house of parliament can reject the tribunal ruling by a
two-thirds majority, but that was unlikely to happen since
only 164 members of the 460-seat house opposed it.
ACKNOWLEDGMENT:To subscribe to Catholic World News Service, available daily by e-mail, or to go to other articles on abortion click here .
Russians urged to say "Nyet" to TV, Sex Ed, and the Culture of Death!
America does not have a monopoly on bad media or nefarious Planned Parenthood schemes. Russia joined the growing chorus against this insidious effort to foist the culture of death on the people when the Russian Orthodox Patriarch lashed out at his country's moral bankruptcy. Click on Nyet to read more.
RUSSIAN PATRIARCH OFFERS CRITICISM OF TELEVISION, SEX EDUCATION
MOSCOW (CWN) - The Russian Orthodox Patriarch of Moscow
struck out at television for its moral bankruptcy and at
plans to introduce sex education in schools during a
Tuesday meeting with parish priests and patriarchate
Patriarch Aleksey II said Russian television has taken
advantage of new freedoms after the fall of Communism to
broadcasts increasing levels of morally offensive material
-- singling out the NTV network's broadcast of Martin
Scorsese's "The Last Temptation of Christ" -- while also
increasing its attacks on the church. "After decades of
persecution, the church is now rising from the ashes," he
said. "But we should not deceive ourselves by this new
dawn, we should not forget that in this world the church
has been, still is and always will be persecuted."
The patriarch also included criticism of the government's
plans to spend millions of dollars on a new sex education
program in schools. "In sermons, we should pay attention
not only to doctrinal truths but to the fight against
drunkenness, smoking, drugs, and other vices ... The
orthodox conscience, still less that of a cleric, cannot
accept legalizing pornography, prostitution, and the sexual
'education' of schoolchildren," he said. He added the
government had raised its allocation for sex education in
next year's budget to 240 billion rubles ($40 million) from
40 billion -- "and this at a time when the country is dying
of poverty and destitution."
Communism begets Capitalism in Croatia, but things are no better according to Archbishop
Greed and selfishness are at the root of the growing chasm between the rich and poor in Croatia as Archbishop Josip Bozanic warned all of the growing split between rich and poor in his annual Christmas address, released early yesterday from his headquarters in Zagreb in which the Croatian prelate called for reconciliation from all fronts in a unified effort to forge ahead for the good of all. Click on Croatia to read more.
CROATIAN ARCHBISHOP SLAMS INCREASING SPLIT BETWEEN RICH, POOR
ZAGREB (CWN) - The new president of the Croatian bishops'
conference used his Christmas address released on Wednesday
to speak out on growing corruption and the growth of poverty.
"Due to sudden changes of the political and economic system
some individuals quickly got rich, while more and more
citizens are getting poorer," said Archbishop Josip
Bozanic. "What we are seeing at work are the sins of the
political structures, made possible by laws whose primary
aim was not the common good of man and society." Croatia
gained its independence from Communist Yugoslavia in 1991
and then became embroiled in war with Serbians who opposed
the split. In 1994, the government instituted an economic
austerity program to bring inflation under control, but
many people subsequently fell into poverty.
"Our society, which carried out its transition at times
when attention was focused on the wars ... is called upon
to reconsider the difficult conditions in which most of the
population, especially in the cities, has found itself,"
Archbishop Bozanic said. "The new name for reconciliation
in today's Croatia is dialogue, tolerance, respect for
democratic procedures ... the preference of the common good
over various party, group, and local interests," he said.
Medjugorje Monthly Message for November 25th
Dear children: Today I invite you to comprehend your Christian vocation. Little children, I led and am leading you through this time of grace, that you may become conscious of your Christian vocation. Holy martyrs died witnessing: I am a Christian and love God over everything. Little children, today also I invite you to rejoice and be joyful Christians, responsible and conscious that God called you in a special way to be joyfully extended hands toward those who do not believe, and that through the example of your life, they may receive faith and love for God. Therefore, pray, pray, pray that your heart may open and be sensitive for the Word of God. Thank you for having responded to my call!
For more on Medjugorje, Click on MEDJUGORJE
PROVERB OF THE DAY
"A newsmonger reveals secrets, but a trustworthy man keeps a confidence."
Proverbs 12: 13
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December 18, 1997 volume 8, no. 55   DAILY CATHOLIC