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|| An adoptive mother convert turns to Mary|
Anonymous writes "The Bible tells us that we are adopted by God the Father (Galatians 4:5-6). |
"When the time had fully come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman ... so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, 'Abba, Father!' So through God you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son then an heir."
Because we are true children of God, this makes Jesus -- who was both fully God and fully Man -- our Brother. One of the last things He did before He died was to forever secure that link to His humanity as well as His divinity. How? From the cross, He made Mary our mother when He said to the "beloved disciple," "Behold your mother ... behold your son." (John 19:26-27).
This is difficult for many who are new to Catholic theology to get our hearts and minds around. However, this is not just the opinion of one over-excited convert. The Church has venerated Mary since the very beginning, and delared at the Council of Ephesus (A.D. 431) that Mary is the "Theotokos" ... the "God Bearer." They honored her as such in response to heretics such as Nestorious who denied Christ's full humanity, for it was she who gave the Son of God His humanity.
Those who are raised in the arms of Mother Church think of Mary as their "heavenly mother" very naturally -- just as it was no big deal for our foster daughter Sarah, at six months of age, to accept Craig's and my ministrations. At her age, she knew only that we met her needs, and she was happy.
For her older brother and sister, that bond of trust took a lot longer to develop. It took WEEKS before they voluntarily came near my husband, and almost as long before they looked to me for any real "mothering." The older one especially insisted on doing everything herself.
One night I realized that this was a lot like how I had approached Mary. She knew she was my mother ... but she waited for me to ASK for her before she intervened. I tell several stories about this in my book "Behold Your Mother: Mary Stories and Reflections from a Catholic Convert."
The fact that I didn't WANT her didn't change the fact of her motherhood, didn't change the fact that she loved me even if I didn't love her.
"Honor thy father and mother." Jesus perfectly fulfilled the Commandments, and honoring Mary does not detract from the worship we offer God because all true devotion to Mary leads straight to Jesus. When we come to her, she always leads us to her Son.
To order an autographed copy of this book, click here. "Note: Posted on the http://CatholicMoms.com Web Site.
Posted by me on Thursday, March 20 @ 17:09:18 CDT (10735 reads)|
(Read More... | 3236 bytes more | 281 comments | Score: 5)
|| Inspirational: Teal glass rosary beads have begun to turn gold|
Anonymous writes "Iam new to the Catholic Moms website but would love to share this fabulous miracle with everyone.|
Last Friday morning I was sitting in a hospital waiting for my turn for a second mammogram in three days. The tech had red flagged my right side the day before and therefore I needed more conclusive testing. While waiting I was praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet on a rosary that I had purchased about a month prior. While faced with what could be a lifechanging test, I prayed to Mary, Jesus, Saints and Angels for intercession. I promised a life devoted to sharing the rosary with others. WOW did I receive an answer. My scan showed very likely that they were cysts not tumors and I would just need a follow up in six months. I was on cloud nine!
Four days later, as a parent volunteer, I was in my daughter's class continuing what I had started the previous Tuesday which was teaching the 2nd graders the rosary. We had learned the Joyful and this past Tuesday 10/9/07 we were working on the Luminnous Mysteries. I reached into my purse and pulled out the teal glass rosaries which I had prayed so hard on for a miracle and another miracle did I see! On each and EVERY bead was a gold color!! I have only ever seen one rosary in my life that a cantor from my church had that the chain had turned to gold but mine is actually the glass beads! This happened yesterday yet I am still in awe everytime I look at them. This morning I went to the religous store where I purchased them to show the owner and she said that this was not the first time that she had sold items that have turned to gold. She said accept it as a grace from The Blessed Mother. I feel so blessed. I am sure it is because she is happy that I am teaching the children the rosary.
So please, please remember to PRAY The Rosary every day!
Miracles happen everyday!
Deneen"Note: Posted on the www.CatholicMoms.com web site.
Posted by me on Saturday, November 24 @ 11:39:19 CST (10931 reads)|
(Read More... | 206 comments | Inspirational | Score: 4.93)
|| Home & Family: Teenager advice (list of 10 items)|
Anonymous writes "1. Never be the one to drink, smoke, or “do” the most of anything. |
2. Look forward to working with the mother or father of your child for 20 years.
3. Get away from people who brag about the weapons they are carrying.
4. Get a job no matter who is footing your bills at the moment. Be on time for work.
5. Practice math and read about science, even if you’re not in school.
6. Get to the party last - you’ll be amazed at what you see.
7. Get home early, not much good happens after midnight anyways.
8. If your friends are telling you to do something you’re not sure is right, think about how you will explain it to a judge 2 months from now.
9. Go the speed limit and wear a seat belt.
10. Attend your church, synagogue, mosque or temple monthly if you don’t go regularly, but try to go every week.
No copyright. Reprint and distribute freely.
Original work by Robert Zalewski www.callrobert.com
Created sometime in March 2002
Posted by me on Thursday, April 20 @ 16:06:31 CDT (11441 reads)|
(Read More... | 261 comments | Home & Family | Score: 3.78)
|| Inspirational: EMERGENCY NUMBERS|
Feb 7, 2006
Emergency numbers may be dialed direct. No operator assistance is
EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBERS
When in sorrow, ......................................... call John 14
When men fail you, ..................................... call Psalm 27
If you want to be fruitful, ............................. call John 15
When you have sinned, .................................. call Psalm 51
When you worry, ................................. call Matthew 6:19-34
When you are in danger, ................................ call Psalm 91
When God seems far away, .............................. call Psalm 139
When your faith needs stirring, ...................... call Hebrews 11
When you are lonely and fearful, ....................... call Psalm 23
When you grow bitter and critical, ............. call I Corinthians 13
For Paul's secret to happiness, .............. call Colossians 3:12-17
For understanding of Christianity, ....... call II Corinthians 5:15-19
When you feel down and out, ......................... call Romans 8:31
When you want peace and rest, .................. call Matthew 11:25-30
When the world seems bigger than God, .................. call Psalm 90
When you want Christian assurance, ................ call Romans 8:1-30
When you leave home for labor or travel, .............. call Psalm 121
When your prayers grow narrow or selfish, .............. call Psalm 67
For a great invention/opportunity, .................... call Isaiah 55
When you want courage for a task, ...................... call Joshua 1
For how to get along with fellow men, ................. call Romans 12
When you think of investments and returns, .............. call Mark 10
If you are depressed, .................................. call Psalm 27
If your pocketbook is empty, ........................... call Psalm 37
If you are losing confidence in people, ........ call I Corinthians 13
If people seem unkind, .................................. call John 15
If discouraged about your work, ....................... call Psalm 126
If you find the world growing small and yourself great,..call Psalm 19
For dealing with fear, ............................... call Psalm 34:7
For security, ....................................... call Psalm 121:3
For assurance, ........................................ call Mark 8:35
For reassurance, ................................... call Psalm 145:18
All lines to Heaven are open 24 hours a day! Feed your faith, and doubt
will starve to death!
"Heavenly Father, you offer us abundant grace, mercy, and forgiveness
through your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Help me to live a grace-filled
life as Mary did by believing in your promises and by giving you my
unqualified "yes" to your will and to your plan for my life."
Posted by God on Thursday, February 09 @ 12:40:27 CST (11606 reads)|
(Read More... | 3460 bytes more | 247 comments | Inspirational | Score: 3.8)
|| Inspirational: God works in mysterious ways|
Anonymous writes "My name is Mary. Almost two years ago during a terrible blizzard my father had his third and most severe heart attack and was dead for an hour. Doctors thought he would either die for good that night or live and be a vegetable. The amazing thing is that a week after his heart attack I found out I was pregnant with my husband and my first child. When the doctor told me when the egg attached itself was the same day my father had his heart attack. The news of a new grandchild gave him the will to live. So GOD does work in mysterious ways."Note: Posted on www.CatholicMoms.com
Posted by administrator on Saturday, March 26 @ 09:14:16 CST (12154 reads)|
(Read More... | 223 comments | Inspirational | Score: 3.8)
|| Inspirational: The Son|
Anonymous writes " A wealthy man and his son loved to collect rare works of art. They had everything in their collection, from Picasso to Raphael. They would often sit together and admire the great works of art. When the Viet Nam conflict broke out, the son went to war. He was very courageous and died in battle while rescuing another soldier.|
The father was notified and grieved deeply for his only son. About a month later, just before Christmas, there was a knock at the door. A young man stood at the door with a large package in his hands.
He said, Sir, you don't know me, but I am the soldier for whom your son gave his life.
He saved many lives that day, and he was carrying me to safety when a bullet struck him in the heart and he died instantly. He often talked about you, and your love for art.
The young man held out his package. I know this isn't much. I'm not really a great artist, but I think your son would have wanted you to have this. The father opened thepackage. It was a portrait of his son, painted by the young man. He stared in awe at the way the soldier had captured the personality of his son in the painting. The father was so drawn to the eyes that his own eyes welled up with tears.
He thanked the young man and offered to pay him for the picture. Oh, no sir, I could never repay what your son did for me. It's a gift.
The father hung the portrait over his mantle. Every time visitors came to his home he
took them to see the portrait of his son before he showed them any of the other great works he had collected.
The man died a few months later. There was to be a great auction of his paintings. Many influential people gathered, excited over seeing the great paintings and having an opportunity to purchase one for their collection. On the platform sat the painting of the son. The auctioneer pounded his gavel. We will start the bidding with this picture of the son. Who will bid for this picture? People in theback of the room shouted, "We want to see the famous paintings. Skip this one." But the auctioneer persisted, "Will someone bid for this painting? Who will start the bidding? $100, $200?"
Another voice shouted angrily, "We didn't come to see this painting. We came to see the Van Goghs, the Rembrandts. Get on with the real bids. But still the auctioneer continued, "The son! The son! Who'll take the son?" Finally, a voice came from the very back of the room. It was the longtime gardener of the man and his son. He shouted, "I'll give $10 for the painting!"
Being a poor man, it was all he could afford. "We have $10, who will bid 20?" "Give it
to him for $10. Let's see the masters." "$10 is the bid, won't someone bid $20?" The crowd was becoming angry. They didn't want the picture of the son. They wanted the more worthy investments for their collections. The auctioneer pounded the gavel. "Going once, twice, SOLD for $10."
A man sitting on the second row shouted, "Now let's get on with the collection!" The
auctioneer laid down his gavel, "I'm sorry, the auction is over." "What about the paintings?" "I am sorry. When I was called to conduct this auction, I was told of a secret stipulation in the will. I was not allowed to reveal that stipulation until this time. Only the painting of the son would be auctioned. Whoever bought that painting would inherit the entire estate, including the paintings. The man who took the son gets everything.
God gave his Son 2,000 years ago to die on a cruel cross. Much like the auctioneer, His message today is, "The Son, the Son, who'll take the Son?" Because you see, whoever takes the Son gets everything.
"Note: Posted on the www.CatholicMoms.com website
Posted by Administrator on Tuesday, January 25 @ 19:33:46 CST (11804 reads)|
(Read More... | 3807 bytes more | 279 comments | Inspirational | Score: 5)
|| Mary's part in the latter times by St Louis de Montfort|
Anonymous writes "|
is provided by
Miracle of the Rosary Mission, Inc.
You will hear me speak more on the following in the days and weeks that follow. I strongly encourage everyone to undertake the preparation for Total Consecration and make the Act of Total Consecration this year. I also strongly recommend those whose have already made the Act of Total Consecration to renew the Act this year. In particular, I strongly recommend it be undertaken to make the Act of Total Consecration on the Feast of the Annunciation, March 25. This also coincides with Good Friday this year. The hope is for the Children of God to unite their fiats with those of Jesus and Mary. The preparation for Total Consecration recommended by Saint Louis de Montfort will begin on February 20.
The materials and publications associated with Total Consecration by Saint Louis de Montfort are available from a number of places. We also have them available at The Rock Religious Shop. Contact information is available at the end of this email.
God bless you, one and all.
Miracle of the Rosary Mission, Inc.
from True Devotion to Mary by Saint Louis de Montfort.
4. Mary's part in the latter times
49. The salvation of the world began through Mary and through her it must be accomplished. Mary scarcely appeared in the first coming of Jesus Christ so that men, as yet insufficiently instructed and enlightened concerning the person of her Son, might not wander from the truth by becoming too strongly attached to her. This would apparently have happened if she had been known, on account of the wondrous charms with which Almighty God had endowed even her outward appearance. So true is this that St. Denis the Areopagite tells us in his writings that when he saw her he would have taken her for a goddess, because of her incomparable beauty, had not his well-grounded faith taught him otherwise. But in the second coming of Jesus Christ, Mary must be known and openly revealed by the Holy Spirit so that Jesus may be known, loved and served through her. The reasons which moved the Holy Spirit to hide his spouse during her life and to reveal but very little of her since the first preaching of the gospel exist no longer.
1) God wishes to make Mary better known in the latter times.
50. God wishes therefore to reveal Mary, his masterpiece, and make her more known in these latter times:
(1) Because she kept herself hidden in this world and in her great humility considered herself lower than dust, having obtained from God, his apostles and evangelists the favour of being made known.
(2) Because, as Mary is not only God's masterpiece of glory in heaven, but also his masterpiece of grace on earth, he wishes to be glorified and praised because of her by those living upon earth.
(3) Since she is the dawn which precedes and discloses the Sun of Justice Jesus Christ, she must be known and acknowledged so that Jesus may be known and acknowledged.
(4) As she was the way by which Jesus first came to us, she will again be the way by which he will come to us the second time though not in the same manner.
(5) Since she is the sure means, the direct and immaculate way to Jesus and the perfect guide to him, it is through her that souls who are to shine forth in sanctity must find him. He who finds Mary finds life, that is, Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth and the life. But no one can find Mary who does not look for her. No one can look for her who does not know her, for no one seeks or desires something unknown. Mary then must be better known than ever for the deeper understanding and the greater glory of the Blessed Trinity.
(6) In these latter times Mary must shine forth more than ever in mercy, power and grace; in mercy, to bring back and welcome lovingly the poor sinners and wanderers who are to be converted and return to the Catholic Church; in power, to combat the enemies of God who will rise up menacingly to seduce and crush by promises and threats all those who oppose them; finally, she must shine forth in grace to inspire and support the valiant soldiers and loyal servants of Jesus Christ who are fighting for his cause.
(7) Lastly, Mary must become as terrible as an army in battle array to the devil and his followers, especially in these latter times. For Satan, knowing that he has little time - even less now than ever - to destroy souls, intensifies his efforts and his onslaughts every day. He will not hesitate to stir up savage persecutions and set treacherous snares for Mary's faithful servants and children whom he finds more difficult to overcome than others.
51. It is chiefly in reference to these last wicked persecutions of the devil, daily increasing until the advent of the reign of anti- Christ, that we should understand that first and well-known prophecy and curse of God uttered against the serpent in the garden of paradise. It is opportune to explain it here for the glory of the Blessed Virgin, the salvation of her children and the confusion of the devil. "I will place enmities between you and the woman, between your race and her race; she will crush your head and you will lie in wait for her heel" (Gen. 3:15).
52. God has established only one enmity - but it is an irreconcilable one - which will last and even go on increasing to the end of time. That enmity is between Mary, his worthy Mother, and the devil, between the children and the servants of the Blessed Virgin and the children and followers of Lucifer.
Thus the most fearful enemy that God has set up against the devil is Mary, his holy Mother. From the time of the earthly paradise, although she existed then only in his mind, he gave her such a hatred for his accursed enemy, such ingenuity in exposing the wickedness of the ancient serpent and such power to defeat, overthrow and crush this proud rebel, that Satan fears her not only more than angels and men but in a certain sense more than God himself. This does not mean that the anger, hatred and power of God are not infinitely greater than the Blessed Virgin's, since her attributes are limited. It simply means that Satan, being so proud, suffers infinitely more in being vanquished and punished by a lowly and humble servant of God, for her humility humiliates him more than the power of God. Moreover, God has given Mary such great power over the evil spirits that, as they have often been forced unwillingly to admit through the lips of possessed persons, they fear one of her pleadings for a soul more than the prayers of all the saints, and one of her threats more than all their other torments.
53. What Lucifer lost by pride Mary won by humility. What Eve ruined and lost by disobedience Mary saved by obedience. By obeying the serpent, Eve ruined her children as well as herself and delivered them up to him. Mary by her perfect fidelity to God saved her children with herself and consecrated them to his divine majesty.
54. God has established not just one enmity but "enmities", and not only between Mary and Satan but between her race and his race. That is, God has put enmities, antipathies and hatreds between the true children and servants of the Blessed Virgin and the children and slaves of the devil. They have no love and no sympathy for each other. The children of Belial, the slaves of Satan, the friends of the world, - for they are all one and the same - have always persecuted and will persecute more than ever in the future those who belong to the Blessed Virgin, just as Cain of old persecuted his brother Abel, and Esau his brother Jacob. These are the types of the wicked and of the just. But the humble Mary will always triumph over Satan, the proud one, and so great will be her victory that she will crush his head, the very seat of his pride. She will unmask his serpent's cunning and expose his wicked plots. She will scatter to the winds his devilish plans and to the end of time will keep her faithful servants safe from his cruel claws.
But Mary's power over the evil spirits will especially shine forth in the latter times, when Satan will lie in wait for her heel, that is, for her humble servants and her poor children whom she will rouse to fight against him. In the eyes of the world they will be little and poor and, like the heel, lowly in the eyes of all, down-trodden and crushed as is the heel by the other parts of the body. But in compensation for this they will be rich in God's graces, which will be abundantly bestowed on them by Mary. They will be great and exalted before God in holiness. They will be superior to all creatures by their great zeal and so strongly will they be supported by divine assistance that, in union with Mary, they will crush the head of Satan with their heel, that is, their humility, and bring victory to Jesus Christ.
2) Devotion to Mary is especially necessary in the latter times.
55. Finally, God in these times wishes his Blessed Mother to be more known, loved and honoured than she has ever been. This will certainly come about if the elect, by the grace and light of the Holy Spirit, adopt the interior and perfect practice of the devotion which I shall later unfold. Then they will clearly see that beautiful Star of the Sea, as much as faith allows. Under her guidance they will perceive the splendours of this Queen and will consecrate themselves entirely to her service as subjects and slaves of love. They will experience her motherly kindness and affection for her children. They will love her tenderly and will appreciate how full of compassion she is and how much they stand in need of her help. In all cir*****stances they will have recourse to her as their advocate and mediatrix with Jesus Christ. They will see clearly that she is the safest, easiest, shortest and most perfect way of approaching Jesus and will surrender themselves to her, body and soul, without reserve in order to belong entirely to Jesus.
56. But what will they be like, these servants, these slaves, these children of Mary?
They will be ministers of the Lord who, like a flaming fire, will enkindle everywhere the fires of divine love. They will become, in Mary's powerful hands, like sharp arrows, with which she will transfix her enemies.
They will be as the children of Levi, thoroughly purified by the fire of great tribulations and closely joined to God. They will carry the gold of love in their heart, the frankincense of prayer in their mind and the myrrh of mortification in their body. They will bring to the poor and lowly everywhere the sweet fragrance of Jesus, but they will bring the odour of death to the great, the rich and the proud of this world.
57. They will be like thunder-clouds flying through the air at the slightest breath of the Holy Spirit. Attached to nothing, surprised at nothing, troubled at nothing, they will shower down the rain of God's word and of eternal life. They will thunder against sin, they will storm against the world, they will strike down the devil and his followers and for life and for death, they will pierce through and through with the two-edged sword of God's word all those against whom they are sent by Almighty God.
58. They will be true apostles of the latter times to whom the Lord of Hosts will give eloquence and strength to work wonders and carry off glorious spoils from his enemies. They will sleep without gold or silver and, more important still, without concern in the midst of other priests, ecclesiastics and clerics. Yet they will have the silver wings of the dove enabling them to go wherever the Holy Spirit calls them, filled as they are with the resolve to seek the glory of God and the salvation of souls. Wherever they preach, they will leave behind them nothing but the gold of love, which is the fulfillment of the whole law.
59. Lastly, we know they will be true disciples of Jesus Christ, imitating his poverty, his humility, his contempt of the world and his love. They will point out the narrow way to God in pure truth according to the holy Gospel, and not according to the maxims of the world. Their hearts will not be troubled, nor will they show favour to anyone; they will not spare or heed or fear any man, however powerful he may be. They will have the two-edged sword of the word of God in their mouths and the blood-stained standard of the Cross on their shoulders. They will carry the crucifix in their right hand and the rosary in their left, and the holy names of Jesus and Mary on their heart. The simplicity and self-sacrifice of Jesus will be reflected in their whole behaviour.
Such are the great men who are to come. By the will of God Mary is to prepare them to extend his rule over the impious and unbelievers. But when and how will this come about? Only God knows. For our part we must yearn and wait for it in silence and in prayer: "I have waited and waited."
"Note: Posted on the www.CatholicMoms.com website
Posted by Administrator on Tuesday, January 25 @ 19:33:12 CST (12692 reads)|
(Read More... | 13836 bytes more | 554 comments | Score: 4.75)
|| Inspirational: Our Celestial Bodyguards By Susan Brinkmann|
Anonymous writes " “The Angels of Jesus do not sleep!” St. Gemma Galgani said one night to her Guardian Angel.|
“Nevertheless, I ought to sleep,” the Angel replied with a smile on his face. “Where shall you put me?”
She commanded him to stay near her all night, which he did, by stretching himself out above her head with his wings spread. The 22-year-old saint completed this entry in her diary by saying, “In the morning, he was still there.”
St. Gemma, an Italian mystic who died in 1903, had the gift of seeing her Guardian Angel throughout her entire life and was shocked when she learned other people couldn't do the same.
Another popular saint who had a strong relationship with his Guardian Angel was St. Pio of Pietrelcina. He often sent his Angel on errands and regularly received the Angels of his spiritual children when in need of prayer,
including those in Purgatory. One night, he had so many of these Angelic visitations that he complained in the morning, “Those Guardian Angels kept me
awake all night!”
St. Frances of Rome, who died in 1440, was another soul gifted with the ability to see angels in human form. In her diary, she once described an Archangel sent to protect her. “He resembled in stature a boy of nine, but only a little taller . . . . He had lively sparkling eyes and the sweetest expression on his lovely face. He wore a white tunic and over it a tunicle that reached to his feet, clear as light and of an ethereal color, something like sky-blue and flaming red. His hair was like spun gold, long enough to
cover his neck and shoulders. . . .”
That every soul has a guardian angel has never been defined by the Church and is not an article of faith, but is repeatedly implied throughout Scripture. The Catechism of the Catholic Church provides guidance on angels, section 328-336. The Church Fathers have provided us with the most definitive information about these guardians who stand at our side.
St. Anselm, for instance, believed that “every soul is committed to an angel when it is united with the body.” St. Thomas Aquinas wrote that not only do baptized Christians receive an angel, but so does every member of the human race. These guardians never leave us, even when we sin, and will accompany us to our eternal reward of heaven or purgatory.
Their power is best illustrated in the famous story of St. Peter who was freed from prison by his Guardian Angel. This Angel had the power to put the guards to sleep, make the iron chains drop off of St. Peter's wrists and
ankles, and open every locked door in their path to freedom.
That our angels have the power to do these things, and more, is beyond dispute, but they will do nothing outside of the will of God.
How they operate is almost as fascinating as they are. They “speak” to us all the time, but with an interior voice — a mental suggestion — much like the Prophet Zachariah's revelations from an angel who spoke “in him” not “to him.” Some of the more specific functions they perform for us include:
One of the main duties our Guardian Angels have is protecting us from danger to our bodies and souls.
They protect our corporal life by shielding us from sudden danger or come to our help when we are hurt. There are thousands of stories of “strangers” who appeared to people in times of danger just long enough to help them before disappearing from sight. For most of us, we will not know how many perils our Angel prevented us from experiencing until after we die.
Our Guardian Angels' greatest job is saving our immortal souls. They do this by exciting pious thoughts or fear of God's judgment. They keep devils away, or at least prevent them from doing all they'd like to do. Guardian Angels prevent demonic activity by running a kind of “interference pattern,” through the interjection of good thoughts for evil ones, suggesting paths that lead away from sin, and strengthening us in times of temptation.
Enlighten and Instruct Us
Sometimes our Guardian Angels will allow us to suffer and experience trials or violent temptations in order to humble us or give us an opportunity to do penance and atone for our faults. For this reason, the Greek Fathers called
the Guardian Angels “Pedagogues,” or better yet, spiritual directors. Even an accident will sometimes be permitted in order to give us the occasion for even greater merit, such as in the case of Tobit, whose angel could have easily prevented the blindness that plagued him for so many years. In Tobit's case, these afflictions are sometimes allowed in order to gain us greater merit.
Accompany Us Through Death
It is a common Christian belief that our Guardian Angels are working the hardest while we are in our final agonies, warding off the last temptations of Satan, which are never stronger than in those last few hours of life on earth. When our souls leave our bodies, it will be our Guardian Angels' duty to escort us to our judgment, then to purgatory if necessary.
If we are in need of further purification, our Angel will often visit us in purgatory to comfort us, and will go off in search of friends and relatives to remind them to pray for us and thus gain us the fastest possible release.
At the end of our suffering, it will be this same angel who accompanies us to paradise.
Guardian Angels are said to be among the lowest choir of angels. Archangels, members of the next choir, are sometimes given to souls who will perform specific work for the Almighty during their tenure on earth. The next choir, the Principalities, are generally considered to be the guardians of cities, nations, churches and parishes.
Many saints in the course of our history have been known to never greet an individual without addressing a silent greeting to the heavenly companion at their side. During time of war and civil unrest, the faithful have turned to
the angels guarding their towns and countries for protection and there are innumerable accounts of divine intervention attributed to these angelic sentinels.
That we are personally attended by an unseen power is a fact of life too often overlooked by the faithful. One can only imagine how much different our lives might be if we resorted more often to the ready assistance of our
celestial body guards.
"A clean heart create for me, O God, and a steadfast spirit renew within me." (Ps.51:12)"Note: Posted on the www.CatholicMoms.com website
Posted by Administrator on Tuesday, January 25 @ 19:31:23 CST (12510 reads)|
(Read More... | 6798 bytes more | 214 comments | Inspirational | Score: 4.6)
|| MATTERS OF LIFE AND DEATH|
Anonymous writes "Monday, January 10, 2005|
MATTERS OF LIFE AND DEATH
Consumer Reports advocates abortion
Trusted magazine analyzes condoms, refers readers to Planned Parenthood to
eliminate 'uterine contents'
Posted: January 10, 2005
11:11 p.m. Eastern
By Ron Strom
© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com
Consumer Reports, the respected magazine that has advised Americans on
everything from new car purchases to which electric can opener to buy, has
published a list of birth-control options that includes abortion, complete
with a section describing how the procedure gets rid of a pregnant
mother's "uterine contents."
The main report, which is available in the February issue and online,
analyzes various brands of condoms for strength and reliability.
Along with the condom report, Consumer Reports provides both a comparative
guide to other contraceptive methods and a page entitled "Birth control:
More and safer choices," which includes discussion of abortion.
Some pro-life activists are shocked at the magazine's promotion of
abortion as a birth-control method.
"There were no details of the risks of abortion like breast cancer or
mental anguish, no pro-life alternatives like adoption, nothing," reader
Marc Smulowitz commented to WND. "Just a soulless 'consumer report' as if
they were recommending the acquisition of the latest blender."
Smulowitz is a long-time magazine subscriber who says he will be canceling
his subscription to Consumer Reports.
Judie Brown, president of American Life League, pointed out that the
section on abortion failed to list any of the procedure's downsides.
"They did not talk about any of the serious side effects," she told WND.
"There's so much information now available regarding the risks and horrors
these women face."
Continued Brown: "There's no reason in the world for Consumer Reports to
do anything but be honest, and they were anything but honest."
The activist also criticized the report for failing to point out that one
of the ways the birth-control pill works is by changing the lining of the
uterus, which prevents a fertilized egg from attaching to the lining, thus
destroying the developing life. This occurs if one of the first two
effects of the pill – preventing ovulation and causing the mucus in the
cervix to change so sperm cannot enter – does not occur. The report did
include the first two effects in its "how it works" section.
Brown says she is urging people not to buy Consumer Reports and to contact
the magazine about its presentation of abortion.
"Mainstream America has always relied on Consumer Reports for the
objective facts with regard to products," she said, "and now all of a
sudden they're advocating killing."
The condoms story looks at the quality of 23 different products, with a
Durex model coming in No. 1. Interestingly, two prophylactics distributed
by Planned Parenthood, the top abortion provider in the nation, came in
dead last in the condom competition.
"Women having an abortion in the U.S. can choose one of two methods: the
so-called abortion pill or a surgical procedure," the abortion section of
the "birth control choices" page states.
After a discussion of the abortion drug RU-486, the piece goes on to
describe methods of surgical abortions.
"Vacuum aspiration, also known as suction curettage, is the standard
surgical abortion method in the U.S. for pregnancies in the first
trimester, when 88 percent of legal abortions take place," the report
"The cervix is enlarged to a diameter of about a half-inch, either by use
of dilating rods or the drug misoprostol. The uterine contents are sucked
out using a manual or electrical pump while the woman is under local
anesthesia. Some women may have cramps afterward, and also intermittent
bleeding for a week or two."
Finally, Consumer Reports states what it claims are risk statistics for
"In the U.S., the fatality risk with mifepristone (RU-486) is slightly
less than 1 per 100,000 cases, compared with 0.1 per 100,000 for surgical
abortion at 8 weeks or less. Pregnancy itself carries a fatality risk of
11.8 per 100,000."
Smulowitz criticized the use of the mortality rates, saying the magazine
is "almost inferring that [abortion] is the better choice. I am surprised
in their reporting to the 'consumer' they didn't show a cost analysis as
to how killing your baby is a lot less expensive than raising your child
Besides the abortion information, the piece advises people needing
"emergency contraception" to contact Planned Parenthood via the Internet.
A leader in the consumer-advisory industry since 1936, Consumer Reports is
published by the nonprofit Consumers Union. It takes no advertising,
saying its mission is to "work for a fair, just and safe marketplace for
all consumers and to empower consumers to protect themselves."
A spokeswoman for Consumer Reports did not return a request for comment by
Ron Strom is a news editor for WorldNetDaily.com."
Posted by Administrator on Monday, January 17 @ 14:11:30 CST (10818 reads)|
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|| Biggest relief effort ever as Asian disaster toll predicted to hit 45,000|
Anonymous writes "The biggest humanitarian relief operation ever mounted was underway along Asia's devastated shores as the death toll from a massive earthquake and the tidal waves it unleashed was predicted to hit 45,000.|
With the scale of the catastrophe still unfolding the confirmed death toll passed 27,000 in nine countries -- but Indonesia warned that it alone could have suffered up to 20,000 more fatalities on top of its official figure of 4,725 deaths.
Indonesia's Vice President Yusuf Kalla, who is in charge of coordinating relief efforts, said he estimated that "21,000 to 25,000 people" had been killed in Sunday's disaster.
The quake, the biggest in 40 years at 9.0 on the Richter scale, ruptured the Indian Ocean seabed off Indonesia's Sumatra island, sending huge waves thousands of kilometres (miles) to kill and destroy in countries around southern and southeast Asia and even in Africa.
Mass funerals were taking place amid scenes of traumatic grief as bodies lay rotting along coastlines throughout the region, lending weight to fears that outbreaks of disease could unleash a second wave of tragedy on a region struggling to cope with the first.
"The people should be buried and the animals should be destroyed and disposed of before they infect the drinking water. It's a massive operation," said UN disaster relief coordinator Jan Egeland.
Gruesome scenes met emergency teams in the worst hit countries of Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia and Thailand, while the death tolls ticked up even in the less affected areas of Malaysia, the Maldives and Myanmar.
As survivors were evacuated from stricken areas tales of the full horror of carnage wrought by the tidal waves emerged: babies torn from their parents' hands, children and the elderly hurled out to sea from their homes, entire villages swept away.
Hundreds of rescue ships, helicopters and planes were mobilised to evacuate tourists from wrecked resorts and airlift stricken victims to hospitals already overflowing with the injured and corpses.
The UN's Egeland told a press conference at UN headquarters in New York that relief operations would be the biggest ever as the destruction was not confined to one country or region.
"The cost of the devastation will be in the billions of dollars. It would probably be many billions of dollars," he said.
In Sri Lanka, where the death toll neared 12,000, bodies pulled from washed out trains, cars, devastated buildings and beaches, were being buried in mass funerals along the southern coastal areas.
The government waived normal legal procedures to dispose of the thousands of bodies to help stave off the threat of disease.
Drinking water wells were already badly contaminated with sea water, government minister Susil Premajayantha said, but the biggest fear is of water contamination by decomposing bodies which could spark epidemics of diseases such as cholera and typhoid, experts warned.
"The biggest health challenges we are facing are the spread of waterborne diseases," said International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies health official Hakan Sandbladh.
Compounding the problem is the huge number of people left homeless, with Sandbladh's organisation saying there were one million people displaced in Sri Lanka alone and 29,000 more in Thailand.
Thousands were also homeless in Indonesia's Aceh province, which bore the brunt of the temblor, hit at point-blank range and then battered by a tsunami.
There were post-apocalyptic scenes in the main city of Banda Aceh, where the stench of death hung over the rubble of houses, while reports trickling in from Aceh's southwestern coast spoke of an almost complete obliteration of a shoreline that is home to an estimated one million people.
"All 17 villages on the coast are no longer there," said Teungku Zulkarnaini, the head of the southwestern Nagan Raya district.
In southern India vultures gathered as survivors grimly buried or burnt their dead. The death toll passed 7,500 Tuesday, with thousands more missing.
Rescuers were anxious to discover the fate of 30,000 people unaccounted for in India's Andaman and Nicobar islands, which are close to the epicentre of the earthquake.
G.C. Gupta, a district official in the Andaman archipelago, 1,200 kilometres (745 miles) from mainland India, said some 30,000 were still missing in the tropical islands known as a vacation paradise where at least 3,000 are known to have died.
"Villages are spread all over. There are 30,000 people that need to be accounted for. Some may have fled into the interior jungles or been swept to sea," said Gupta.
Witnesses spoke of waves "taller than buildings" that crashed into the islands spread over 800 kilometres (500 miles).
On the southern Indian mainland, the death toll was expected to mount with tens of thousands still missing. Cranes dug mass graves and mourners built funeral pyres as vultures gathered where bodies still lay in the open. Funerals were carried out in a rush with minimum ritual.
Tens of thousands spent the night huddling in emergency relief camps as the government stepped up relief efforts and the Indian Red Cross appealed for food, clothes and tarpaulins.
In the worst-hit Indian state of Tamil Nadu, fisherman A. Ravi wept as he recalled watching his family, including four children, swept away as his village was flattened.
"We went fishing in the early morning and a few hours later the water started swirling around us and suddenly the level went down so sharply we could see the seabed," said Ravi.
"Then I saw a huge sheet of water going towards the shore... when I got back I found my village under water and my family gone," he said.
Similar stories of personal tragedy were repeated throught the region, with new horrors revealed each time rescuers reach previously cut off areas.
In Thailand, more than 700 foreign tourists are believed to be among the total of 990 dead.
"The latest figure we have is more than 990 confirmed deaths. Of these some 200 were Thais and the rest were foreigners," Sutham Sangprathum told reporters before a cabinet meeting on the disaster.
In the tourist resort of Khao Lak, scores of bodies found scattered on streets and among trees were piled into trucks by emergency crews, with up to 150 corpses on a single flatbed truck seen by an AFP photographer.
Hundreds of rescue workers and soldiers in white face masks were still pulling the dead out of the mud, or retrieving them from forests or ruined buildings.
For four to five kilometres (2.5-3 miles) through the town, the scene was of utter devastation and the destruction stretched two kilometres inland.
Almost 29,000 people were evacuated from the Thailand's affected areas, which included the resort islands of Phuket and Phi Phi where thousands of European tourists had been enjoying holidays.
Hardly a building was left standing on Phi Phi island east of Phuket, where bodies were seen strewn about the island, covered in white cloths before being taken away by emergency crews or Western tourist volunteers.
"I saw bodies almost everywhere on land, and in the water too, and I think there are many more bodies trapped under the bungalow debris," said rescuer Wirat Mansa-ad, estimating 300 died on the island alone.
As Thailand mobilised its army and navy in a huge rescue operation, dazed foreigners began flying home -- still struggling to come to grips with what had happened.
Melina Heppell, a six-month-old baby girl from Australia, was swept from her father's arms on Patong Beach, Phuket, when a tsunami wave hit, her uncle Simon Illingworth said on Australian television.
"They were walking along Patong Beach yesterday... he thought he had the baby in his hands, but all he had was clothes," Illingworth said, tears streaming down his cheeks.
The waves triggered by the quake were so powerful that the destruction reached the shores of Africa about 7,000 kilometres (4,000 miles) away, killing more than 100 Somali fishermen.
The tragedy has sparked a growing chorus of calls throughout the region for a tsunami alert system, as many victims were swept from coastlines hours after the quake which triggered the giant waves was recorded.
Posted by Administrator on Tuesday, December 28 @ 14:12:05 CST (5657 reads)|
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