ur Lady: Untier of knots

Dr. Taylor Marshall (taylor@taylormarshall.com)

https://snt147.mail.live.com/default.aspx?id=64855#n=1746770408&fid=1&mid=dcea5d1e-6422-11e3-a1ff-00237de4a7bc&fv=1

Our new Pope Francis has a very special devotion to Our Lady Untier of Knots. Many have never heard of this devotion, but it’s a great one…going all the way back to the second century.

Before describing “Our Lady Untier of Knots,” I’d like to share a recent experience from my own life as it relates to this special Marian devotion:

During the offertory of our High Mass for the feast of Saint Thomas Aquinas, a student tapped me on the shoulder, “Dr. Marshall, you’re needed in the courtyard.” I was a bit puzzled, but I followed the student outside.

Outside in the courtyard, I saw one of the altar servers handing a hot thurible and the chains were tangled and knotted. The priest was about to incense the altar, and in its current condition, the thurible would not close. It was a jangled up mess. Apparently, the base of the thurible had flipped over a few times and the chains were wound up around each other. If you have handled a thurible, you may have experienced this before.

We literally had 45 seconds until the priest needed the thurible at the altar. I prayed, “Our Lady, Untier of Knots, pray for us.” And like magic I tumbled around the base of the thurible about three times. Aha! It was straight again. The altar server used his bare hands to put the coals in the thurible (he was in a hurry, after all) and he darted inside to the altar…just in time

So what is meant by the title Our Lady Untier of Knots?

Pope Francis’s Devotion to ‘Our Lady Untier of Knots’

Our new Pope Francis has been one of the chief promoters of “Our Lady Untier of Knots.” When Pope Francis, then Jorge Mario Bergoglio, was studying in Germany, he was stunned by a Bavarian painting of “Holy Mary, Our Lady Untier of Knots.” He acquired a copy of the painting and brought it to Argentina and promoted devotion to Mary under this title. Apparently it has caught on with the faithful of Argentina.

It is interesting that this Marian devotion of Pope Francis is rooted in Bavaria – it therefore creates a bridge between the Pontificate of Pope Benedict XVI and that of Pope Francis. In fact, Cardinal Bergoglio had an image of Our Lady Untier of Knots engraved into a chalice and presented it to Pope Benedict XVI.

The Theology of Our Lady Untier of Knots

The theology of Mary untying knots goes back to the second century – less than one hundred years after the death of the Apostles. Saint Irenaeus of Lyons wrote “the knot of Eve’s disobedience was loosed by the obedience of Mary. For what the virgin Eve had bound fast through unbelief, this did the virgin Mary set free through faith.” (Adversus haereses, 3, 22) This is one of the earliest examples of describing Mary as the “New Eve.” Eve, standing next to Adam, is the “co-peccatrix” (co-sinner) Mary, standing next to Christ crucified, is the “co-redemptrix” (co-redemptress). This does not mean that Mary directly saves or redeems us. It means that Mary consents and participates in the redemptive action of Christ. Her role is congruent and relative to the condign and absolute role of Christ.

Our Lady Untier of Knots is Patristic and may be the way forward for establishing and expanding Marian theology. The doctrine of Mary’s universal mediation and her subordinate role to Christ in human salvation is beautifully summed up in this saying of Saint Irenaeus of Lyons. The fact that it goes back to the second century reveals that this is not a medieval accretion. It’s a doctrine deriving from the Apostles themselves.

Question: Had you heard of this devotion, Our Lady Untier of Knots? If so, in what part of the world do you live? Is it popular there?

72 were sent out


“72” Were sent out in Christ name
Why “72”? And WHY are numbers in the bible signifient?
by: Patrick Miron

Luke 10: 1-5 “And after these things the Lord appointed also other seventy-two: and he sent them two and two before his face into every city and place whither he himself was to come. And he said to them: The harvest indeed is great, but the labourers are few. Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he send labourers into his harvest. Go: Behold I send you as lambs among wolves. Carry neither purse, nor scrip, nor shoes; and salute no man by the way. Into whatsoever house you enter, first say: Peace be to this house.”

Anytime one encounters a number in the bible, it’s important to ask if the number itself has significance. This is based on Jewish Tradition where numbers often have a meaning of there own, known by all, and understood by all for who the teaching or message is immediately intended for.

http://www.agapebiblestudy.com
“In sacred Scripture numbers usually have more significance than their quantitative indicators. More often than not, even when a number is used to indicate a certain quantity, the individual number given may point beyond the numerical value to a symbolic significance. At other times the number given is not to be taken literally and may represent an approximate value, a symbolic value, or may represent hyperbole-an exaggerated value. For example, the six day period of Creation may not be literal but may represent a symbolic period of time that was perfected on the seventh day when God rested-7 being one of the four “perfect” numbers. Or the number of the 144,000 heavenly souls marked with the “seal of the living God” in Revelation chapter 7 may suggest, as Bible scholars both ancient and modern have interpreted it, a number reflecting the symbolic perfection of redeemed man in terms of the “perfect” number 12 which signifies perfection of government in Scripture. 144,000 is the square of 12.”

http://www.agapebiblestudy.com/documents/the%20significance%20of%20numbers%20in%20scripture.htm: Much additional information can be found on this web site.

ONE: In sacred Scripture “one,” ehad, in Hebrew, represents unity and is the quintessential number of monotheism, the worship of one God.

TWO: This number can mean difference, division or double portion.

THREE: In sacred Scripture the number three represents that which is solid, real, substantial, and something in its completeness. This number usually indicates something of importance or significance in God’s plan of salvation by identifying an important event in Salvation History. This number operates as a “sign-post” in Scripture study for the reader to “pay attention” to the significance of the next event.

 FOUR: The number four represents God’s creative works, especially works associated with the earth:

FIVE: This is the number of power and Divine grace.

SIX: Both man and the serpent were created on the sixth day, therefore, the number six represents both man and rebellion. In the Greek alphabet the number six is not represented by an alphabetic letter but is instead represented by a symbol called the “stigma.” In Revelation 13:18 the number of the Beast is written not as 666 but is instead is written with the Greek symbols for 600 and 60 and 6. In his book Numbers in Scripture, E.W. Bullinger observes that these three symbols correspond to first and last letters of the Greek word for Christ = CHRISTOS, with the symbol of the serpent in between the two other numbers of 666 [see Numbers in Scripture page 49]. Perhaps this arrangement can be seen to be Christ the Messiah crushing the serpent as God told the serpent in Genesis 3:15: I shall put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; he will crush your head and you will strike its heel.

SEVEN: Spiritual perfection and fullness or completion. It is the number of Covenant and of the Holy Spirit.

EIGHT: sh’moneh in Hebrew, from the root shah’meyn “to make fat” or “to cover with fat” which means to super-abound. The first of a new series: there are seven days in a week; the 8th day is the beginning of a new series of days. It is the number of salvation, resurrection, and new birth/regeneration.

NINE: This number is related to the number six, being the sum of its factors (3×3=9, and 3+3=6). It is significant of the end of man and the sum of all man’s works. Nine is therefore the number of finality or judgment.

TEN: Perfection of divine order

ELEVEN: disorder: 10 + 1 or 12 – 1; also disorganization, lack of fulfillment, imperfection

TWELVE: Perfection of government. Twelve is the number of the Church, both the Old Covenant Church of Israel founded by twelve physical fathers (the twelve sons of Jacob-Israel) and the New Covenant Church founded by twelve spiritual fathers (the twelve Apostles). This number also has a relationship with multiples of twelve END QUOTES

So dear friends we can now understand the core message in the choice of using “72.” It does NOT necessarily means that Christ ACTUALLY chose “72” additional disciples, even though it might have been?

Here “72” represents [6x 12] = “72.” The “6” here represents both man, and mans natural tendency to rebel again change and authority. While the “12” represents both the responsibility and the necessary POWER of independent-“GOVERNANCE.”

The message then becomes that man [all mankind] is commanded by God, to “go forth and preach the [His] GOOD NEWS”; but the 6 x 12 lacks perfection and or competition, that the number “84” [7 x 12] would lend to the teaching. So the entirety of the message then is that this mandate becomes an ON-GOING; NEVER-ENDING task for humanity. It applied when Christ was here on earth, and it applies [perhaps even more urgently] to us today; to [1] Know the Good News; [2] to Live the Good News and to [3] SHARE the Good news as God grants us the opportunity to do so.

The “real-kicker” though is that the ability to KNOW the fullness of God’s “Good News“, and therefore the ability to share it [we can’t share what we ourselves do not have] resides exclusively within the confines of the Catholic Church.

Mt. 15:18-19 “And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven.”

Jn. 17:18-19 “As thou hast sent me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. And for them do I sanctify myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth”

Jn.20:21-22 “He said therefore to them again: Peace be to you. As the Father hath sent me, I also send you. When he had said this, he breathed on them; and he said to them: Receive ye the Holy Ghost.

Mk. 16:14-15 “At length he appeared to the eleven as they were at table: and he upbraided them with their incredulity and hardness of heart, because they did not believe them who had seen him after he was risen again. And he said to them: Go ye into the whole world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

Mt. 28: 16-20 “And the eleven disciples went into Galilee, unto the mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And Jesus coming, spoke to them, saying: All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.”

And NOW dear friends, you know! Amen!

By What Authority? by Paul McCusker


By What Authority?

July 20, 2013 by Paul McCusker
Filed under Church Authority, Featured, Paul McCusker

 Life, As I Find It

As I’ve mentioned before, and will mention again, one of the triggers for my journey to the Catholic faith began with a simple but life-changing question: By what authority does someone interpret Scripture and establish doctrine?

 What made that question so pivotal for me is that it challenged a few vital assumptions in my Evangelical Protestant theology. It also came up at a time when I faced radical changes in the Episcopal Church, of which I was a member. I was alarmed by the way decisions were being made there that seemed contrary to Scripture, Tradition and Reason. Yet, according to the authority of that church, their radical interpretation of the Bible and establishment of tradition-breaking doctrine was legitimate.

 I started asking, “Hey, wait a minute, who’s in charge here anyway?” It can’t be a theological free-for-all – can it?

 At the same time, I watched as more traditional Evangelical Protestants, with their Bibles in hand, set themselves up as their own “authorities” and made some surprising decisions. Surprising to me, that is. Some dropped out of any regular church attendance (because it was an optional extra, rather than a necessary part of the Christian life). Some talked as if there was no objective way to discuss Scripture, as if it all came down to “what it means to me and you can’t tell me otherwise.” I saw the line between interpretation and application become blurred, if not erased. So, again, I wondered: who gets the final word?

 I read Jesus’ prayer for unity and almost wanted to dismiss it as sentimental wishful- thinking on His part. I suspect many Christians do. And I struggled to reconcile the idea that the same Holy Spirit – invoked by every individual – could be inspiring so many outright contradictions among believers.

 So I asked the question. By what authority does someone interpret Scripture and establish doctrine?

 

 To find the answer, I dared to venture beyond the boundaries of history I had previously allowed (only as far back as the Reformation) and pushed through to the Ancient Church. I wanted to know what the generation of Christians following the Resurrection and original 12 Apostles believed and why they believed it. I was shocked to learn how very Catholic they were.

 The Bible itself pointed me to the reality of Apostolic Authority and, eventually, the question was settled. Once that was done, the move into the Catholic Church became inevitable.

 Thereafter, I thought that, since the question was important to me, I ought to put it to my Protestant friends because it ought to be important to them. I was naïve. The question was often unwelcome, but stirred up some remarkable reactions.

 One involved a wide-eyed have-you-lost-your-mind kind of response. Not because I had lost my mind, but because the question itself seemed crazy. The answer, it’s assumed, was clearly established long-ago by someone, somewhere – though they don’t know when or by whom or where exactly. Maybe by Luther or Billy Graham. But certainly not by the corrupt gang who messed everything up before them.

 Not only was the question crazy, it was superfluous. It’s like asking whether or not the American Revolution was a legitimate action or speculating what might have happened had the South won the Civil War. Things are what they are, there’s no point in revisiting a question that’s been answered somewhere somehow. Don’t mess with the “givens.”

 If my friends thought about it at all, they often had varying answers. Authority to interpret Scripture, for them, may be based on a democratic consensus in their churches. Or because the Pastor went to seminary. Or a teacher seemed wise and holy. Or the interpreter is personally charismatic. Or maybe the person speaking says things that “ring true” or resonate with their own feelings or experiences.

 But, at the heart of it, I found that my question triggered a debate most people didn’t really want to have.

 Assumption plays heavily in any answer, if an answer comes at all. People assume that it’s understood where the Authority rests, in the same way they assume that a chair is reliable and will hold them up if they sit on it – or that the person in the uniform flying the airplane is qualified to do it. It’s a vague and mysterious trust in the established order of things.

 What I hadn’t anticipated was how very unnerving and distressing the question could be. The one thing most people don’t want challenged are the core assumptions in their worldview. Usually it takes a personal trauma or cataclysm to make people re-think those assumptions: God didn’t behave the way they thought, there is a terrible sickness or death, a horrible act of evil, or a natural catastrophe. Other than that, why bother? To ask such a thing is like throwing a brick through a carefully crafted Tiffany window. I asked because the crisis in my church forced me to.

 Now, as a Catholic, I see more clearly what I’m up against. The Catholic faith is an assault that challenges the assumptions not only of Evangelical Protestants but of most people. It is solid, rigorous and unique – and therefore foreign and frightening and dangerous. It is the answer to an unwelcome question. So, how do we get people to ask a question they don’t want to ask? That’s one of the challenges of the New Evangelization.

Read more

10 Things we NEED to know about Advent by Jimmy Atkins


 

10 Things You Need to Know About Advent http://www.ncregister.com/blog/jimmy-akin/10-things-you-need-to-know-about-advent1/

by Jimmy Akin Friday, November 22, 2013 2:19 PM Comments (2)

Advent is about to begin. What do the Church’s official documents say about this season?
Advent begins on Sunday, December 1st.

Most of us have an intuitive understanding of Advent, based on experience, but what do the Church’s official documents actually say about Advent?

Here are some of the basic questions and (official!) answers about Advent.
Some of the answers are surprising!
Here we go . . .

1. What Is the Purpose of Advent?
Advent is a season on the Church’s liturgical calendar–specifically, it is as season on the calendar of the Latin Church, which is the largest Church in communion with the pope.
Other Catholic Churches–as well as many non-Catholic churches–have their own celebration of Advent.

According to the General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar:
Advent has a twofold character:

as a season to prepare for Christmas when Christ’s first coming to us is remembered;
as a season when that remembrance directs the mind and heart to await Christ’s Second Coming at the end of time.
Advent is thus a period for devout and joyful expectation [Norms 39].
We tend to think of Advent only as the season in which we prepare for Christmas, or the First Coming of Christ, but as the General Norms point out, it is important that we also remember it as a celebration in which we look forward to the Second Coming of Christ.
Properly speaking, Advent is a season that brings to mind the Two Comings of Christ.

2. What Liturgical Colors Are Used in Advent?
Particular days and certain types of celebrations can have their own colors (e.g., red for martyrs, black or white at funerals), but the normal color for Advent is violet. The General Instruction of the Roman Missal provides:

The color violet or purple is used in Advent and Lent. It may also be worn in Offices and Masses for the Dead [346d].

In many places, there is a notable exception for the Third Sunday of Advent, known as Gaudete Sunday:

The color rose may be used, where it is the practice, on Gaudete Sunday (Third Sunday of Advent) and on Laetare Sunday (Fourth Sunday of Lent) [GIRM 346f].

3. Is Advent a Penitential Season?
We often think of Advent as a penitential season because the liturgical color for Advent is violet, like the color of Lent, which is a penitential season.

However, in reality, Advent is not a penitential season. Surprise!
According to the Code of Canon Law:

Can. 1250 The penitential days and times in the universal Church are every Friday of the whole year and the season of Lent.

Although local authorities can establish additional penitential days, this is a complete listing of the penitential days and times of the Latin Church as a whole, and Advent is not one of them.

4. When Does Advent Begin and End?
According to the General Norms:
Advent begins with evening prayer I of the Sunday falling on or closest to 30 November and ends before evening prayer I of Christmas [Norms 40].

The Sunday on or closest to November 30 can range between November 27 and December 3, depending on the year.

In the case of a Sunday, Evening Prayer I is said on the evening of the preceding day (Saturday). According to the General Instruction of the Liturgy of the Hours:

96. Evening prayer, celebrated immediately before Mass, is joined to it in the same way as morning prayer. Evening prayer I of solemnities, Sundays, or feasts of the Lord falling on Sundays may not be celebrated until after Mass of the preceding day or Saturday.

This means that Advent begins on the evening of a Saturday falling between November 26 and December 2 (inclusive), and it ends on the evening of December 24th, which holds Evening Prayer I of Christmas (December 25th).

5. What Is the Role of Sundays in Advent?
There are four Sundays of Advent. The General Norms state:
The Sundays of this season are named the First, Second, Third, and Fourth Sundays of Advent [Norms 41].

We have already mentioned that the Third Sunday of Advent has a special name–Gaudete Sunday. Gaudete is the Latin word for “Rejoice,” which is the first word of the introit of the Mass for this day.

The Church ascribes particular importance to these Sundays, and they take precedence over other liturgical celebrations. Thus the General Norms state:

Because of its special importance, the Sunday celebration gives way only to solemnities or feasts of the Lord. The Sundays of the seasons of Advent, Lent, and Easter, however, take precedence over all solemnities and feasts of the Lord. Solemnities occuring on these Sundays are observed on the Saturdays preceding [Norms 5].

You also cannot celebrate Funeral Masses on the Sundays of Advent:
Among the Masses for the Dead, the Funeral Mass holds first place. It may be celebrated on any day except for Solemnities that are Holydays of Obligation, Thursday of Holy Week, the Paschal Triduum, and the Sundays of Advent, Lent, and Easter, with due regard also for all the other requirements of the norm of the law [GIRM 380].

6. What Happens on Weekdays in Advent?
It is especially recommended that homilies be given on the weekdays of Advent. The General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) states:

On Sundays and Holydays of Obligation there is to be a Homily at every Mass that is celebrated with the people attending and it may not be omitted without a grave reason. On other days it is recommended, especially on the weekdays of Advent, Lent and Easter Time, as well as on other festive days and occasions when the people come to church in greater numbers [GIRM 66].

The General Norms also point out a special role for the weekdays of the week preceding Christmas:

The weekdays from 17 December to 24 December inclusive serve to prepare more directly for the Lord’s birth [Norms 41].

This special role is illustrated, for example, by the Scripture readings used in the liturgy on these days.

7. How Are Churches Decorated During Advent

The General Instruction of the Roman Missal notes:

During Advent the floral decoration of the altar should be marked by a moderation suited to the character of this time of year, without expressing in anticipation the full joy of the Nativity of the Lord. During Lent it is forbidden for the altar to be decorated with flowers. Exceptions, however, are Laetare Sunday (Fourth Sunday of Lent), Solemnities, and Feasts [GIRM 305].

8. How Is Music Performed During Advent?
The General Instruction of the Roman Missal notes:
In Advent the use of the organ and other musical instruments should be marked by a moderation suited to the character of this time of year, without expressing in anticipation the full joy of the Nativity of the Lord. In Lent the playing of the organ and musical instruments is allowed only in order to support the singing. Exceptions, however, are Laetare Sunday (Fourth Sunday of Lent), Solemnities, and Feasts [GIRM 313].

9. Is the Gloria Said or Sung During Advent?
Neither. The General Instruction of the Roman Missal provides:
[The Gloria or “Glory to God in the highest”] is sung or said on Sundays outside Advent and Lent, and also on Solemnities and Feasts, and at particular celebrations of a more solemn character [GIRM 53].

10. What Private Devotions Can We Use to Grow Closer to God During Advent?
There are a variety of private devotions that the Church has recognized for use during Advent. The most famous is the Advent Wreath.

You can read about these devotions in the Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy (starting at no. 96).

Read more: http://www.ncregister.com/blog/jimmy-akin/10-things-you-need-to-know-about-advent1/#ixzz2lWSr55wO

 

Riding the cusp of TRUTH


Countless Millions are Riding the Cusp of Truth, without even knowing it

 

I’m Catholic

Philosophical musings on the matter of “a single truth.”

by Pat Miron

 

Matt.13: 45-46 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it“.

 Here’s the risk: Prov.12: 17 “He who speaks the truth gives honest evidence,

but a false witness utters deceit.” … 2nd. Tim. 4: 3-4 “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, [ACTUALLY its been here for awhile already] but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander into myths.”

 Rom.1: 18, 25 “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth. because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever! Amen.” … 2Cor.4;1-5 “Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. We have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways; we refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled only to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the likeness of God. For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.” 

Here’s “the truth” explained  …. “What is true remains true even if nobody believes it; and a lie remains a lie even if everybody believes is” Archbishop Fulton Sheen

 Here’s the source of ALL truth: [Always] John.14; 6 “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me. … John.8: 12 “Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” … John.9: 5 “As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”John.11: 25 “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live,” …

John.12: 26 “If any one serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there shall my servant be also; if any one serves me, the Father will honor him.” … John 14:23-24 “Jesus answered him, “If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. He who does not love me does not keep my words; and the word which you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me.”

Jesus, with a ardent burning desire for the salvation of Souls, desires that there still be a Devine-presence, a single source of the truth ever in our midst; available as a guide, a light to shine in the darkness of sin-filled secularisms ”MEISM‘S“; to brighten the path, to lead the way. To hold “the key’s” and to be able to unlock “the gate.” To keep, define and protect God’s Singular truths.

 Matt. 16:17-19 “And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

 Matt.28 Verses 16, 18-20 “ Now the eleven disciples [Apostles] went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. .. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.”John 17:18-19 “As thou didst send me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. [MEANS: With God actual powers and Authority].. And for their sake I [Jesus /God] consecrate myself, that they also may be consecrated in truth. … John 20:21-22 “Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit”!

 Here is WHY truth is important: Sir.4: 25,28 “Never speak against the truth, but be mindful of your ignorance. Strive even to death for the truth and the Lord God will fight for you. [Conversely by implication here is the message that those who seek not the truth, will have God fighting against them.] Rom.2: 8 “but for those who are factious and do not obey the truth, but obey wickedness, there will be wrath and fury.”

 Here is the problem: John 8: 45-46 “But, because I [Jesus] tell the truth, you do not believe me. Which of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me?

 Here’s the reason for this document: 2Tim.1: 1-2, 7, 13-14 “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God according to the promise of the life which is in Christ Jesus, To Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. … for God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self-control. Do not be ashamed then of testifying to our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel in the power of God, For this gospel I was appointed a preacher and apostle and teacher, Follow the pattern of the sound words which you have heard from me, in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus; guard the truth that has been entrusted to you by the Holy Spirit who dwells within us.”

 Here is Merriam-Webster definition for “truth.”

1. aarchaic:fidelity, constancy b: sincerity in action, character, and utterance

2. a (1): the state of being the case : fact (2): the body of real things, events, and facts : actuality (3)often capitalized: a transcendent fundamental or spiritual reality b: a judgment, proposition, or idea that is true or accepted as true <truths of thermodynamics> c: the body of true statements and propositions 3. a: the property (as of a statement) of being in accord with fact or reality bchiefly British: true 2 c: fidelity to an original or to a standard”

 Here is The Catholic Dictionary [by Father John Hardon S.J.]

TRUTH. “Conformity of mind and reality. Three kinds of conformity give rise to three kinds of truth. In logical truth, the mind is conformed or in agreement with things outside the mind, either in assenting to what is or in denying what is not. Its opposite is error. In metaphysical or ontological truth, things conform with the mind. This is primary conformity, when something corresponds to the idea of its maker, and it is secondary conformity when something is intelligible and therefore true to anyone who knows it. In moral truth, what is said conforms with what is on one’s mind. This is truthfulness and its opposite is falsehood.”

 Not to long ago while listening to Father Mitch Pacwa’s homily at Mass; Father used the term: “Designer Religions” as a reality of today’s world. I had never head the expression before; but knew exactly what he meant and the point that he was making. 2nd. Tim. 4: 3-4

 By definition and applied logic, truth is “One”. But that definition, tradition, and even logic have been over ruled by “MEISM.” {my personal view, my understanding, is of the greatest importance; overriding every other consideration.}

 “MEISM” came to America’s shores with “The Bialy’s” in the virgining Twentieth -Century. They are widely credited with being the American-birth-parents” of what we know today as the “New Age Religions”

 Because Protestantism was already well founded here in America [one could be anything socially but “a catholic” it seems], New Age philosophy had a fertile ground in which to seed and grow. Because of it’s “Designer aspects” it caught in quickly and widely.

 Added to this fertile ground was the emerging technology of Electronic Media. Radio; then Television and Movies. Each having the common denominator of being a “business” seeking customers for there wares and, of course money. LOT”S of money. It was the business aspects that seems to have driven some of the Philosophy and Theology of the rapidly growing number of “communions” within the Protestant ranks. Expressions of “self” taught as singular truths. An example of this is the “Sinners Prayer.” Made necessary as an expedient “to “make” salvation” fast enough to fit broadcast schedules and commercial breaks. Here are BUT a Few References for this position.

 http://www.bible.ca/g-sinners-prayer.htm; http://www.biblestudyguide.org/articles/prayer-sinners-prayer/sinners-prayer.htm

http://gospelcall.blogspot.com/2010/05/short-history-of-sinners-prayer.html

 It seems both appropriate and necessary to ask if “A partial truth” is to be considered equal in every way as “the truth”? And do “good intentions” act as a sort of “truth filler/ justifier?” A third question might be; asking when “Objective Truth” as a defined reality metamorphosed into today’s reality of a “Subjective”- quasi-truth that finds very wide acceptance took hold? And IS commonly held to be “equal too” what at one time was the accepted reality that “truth” is [was] singular; one truth per precisely defined issue.

 So as not to get too far off track; the timing is not of great relevance to the fact that it’s here; it’s fully imbedded in religious matters and circles and it’s validity is seemly no longer even questioned. The how’s and why’s of this fact I will leave for someone far brighter than me.

 What concerns the salvation of Souls is; or ought to be a matter of great importance to all of us who are, if even occasionally, placed in situations where we are asked to either explain or defend some aspect of our Catholic Faith. From this narrowed perspective the how, who, and why of bible translation becomes thee point of demarcation. The point where Objective truths; can at will be changed to Subjective personal choice with seemingly complete immunity.

 The necessary question here then becomes; are such changes granted  or permitted by our God? [who else really matters?] Another way of asking this might be; “does truth still matter; Objectively speaking?” Will God accept one’s personal opinion, ones preferred choices over or as a substitute to God’s Own Teachings? The answer, because God is and MUST BE, and MUST Remain perfect is NO! He cannot and does not.

  It seems reasonable that all who seek a relationship with Our God, must be “seekers of God’s truth on God‘s rules and mandates.” The gifts of the Holy Spirit while normally disbursed  at random according to His Will; [1st. Cor. 12:11] His Own desire; have a common thread; THEE TRUTH, that runs through them.  But because God’s Mercy is only exceeded by God’s Love for us; God permits TRUE Seekers to ask and pray for all of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom, Knowledge, Understanding, Piety, Fear of the LORD, Prudence and Right Judgment.

 On all matters dealing with religious truths, finding them, understanding them and accepting them on God’s terms, at some early point leads one quite naturally to the Bible. While not “everything” God teaches is enclosed therein; that which is not is clearly authorized by God within its pages, mandates, commands and teachings.

 “Vatican City, Apr 23, 2009 /(CNA).-[Catholic News Agency] On Thursday morning, Pope Benedict addressed representatives of the Pontifical Biblical Commission following their plenary assembly and said that a correct understanding of Scripture does not come from “the individualistic illusion that biblical texts can be better understood outside the community of believers” but rather rises from the Tradition of the Church.

 Benedict XVI began by underlining the importance of the chosen theme, which “concerns not only believers, but the Church herself, because the Church’s life and mission necessarily rest upon the Word of God … .”

 Pope Benedict, himself an academic, also warned Catholic biblical scholars that the study of Sacred Scripture cannot be reduced to a purely academic exercise but must involve a perception of “the Word of God in these texts.”

 “The interpretation of Sacred Scriptures cannot be a merely an individual academic undertaking, but must always be compared with, inserted into, and authenticated by the living Tradition [means the entire body of Catholic Teaching] of the Church.

 “This norm is essential in order to ensure a correct and reciprocal exchange between exegesis and Church Magisterium,” the Pope stated.

 But the Holy Father went further, offering a corrective reminder to biblical scholars, saying, “Catholic exegetes do not nourish the individualistic illusion that biblical texts can be better understood outside the community of believers. [THIS MEANS THE CATHOLIC CHURCH] The opposite is true, because these texts were not given to individual scholars ‘to satisfy their curiosity or to provide them with material for study and research’. The texts inspired by God were entrusted to the community of believers, to the Church of Christ, to nourish the faith and to guide the life of charity.” Matt. 28: 16, 18-19  [cf] “Go and teach the entire world what I have taught you”

 The Pontiff also summarized the Church’s understanding of Scripture and Tradition.

“Sacred Scripture is the Word of God in that it is written down under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Tradition, on the other hand, integrally transmits the Word of God as entrusted by Christ the Lord and by the Holy Spirit to the Apostles and their successors so that they, illuminated by the Spirit of truth, could faithfully conserve, explain and spread it through their preaching.” John 14:16-17 fulfilled in John 20: 21-22.

 [Pope] Benedict XVI closed his address to the commission by emphasizing the need to harmonize the Magisterium and academic scholarship. “Only within the ecclesial context can Sacred Scripture be understood as the authentic Word of God which is guide, norm and rule for the life of the Church and the spiritual development of believers. This means rejecting all interpretations that are subjective or limited to mere analysis [and hence] incapable of accepting the global meaning which, over the course of the centuries, has guided the Tradition of the entire people of God.”

 From this discourse let us seek out from a super-abundance of evidence;  some biblical supportive “teaching expressions” of this truth. The truth that God choose only Peter, the Apostles and His Catholic Church; and enables ONLY them to Know, understand correctly and fully understand and therefore, be able to share what it is God Commands. At it’s core is God’s Plan for salvation of all souls. No other manner works, and no other teachings are seen as relevant by God.  Knowing what the bible is teaching [not only saying] exist only in the Inspired, Enlightened, Protected, and Guided by BOTH Jesus Himself and God the Holy Spirits, One God with Only One set of Faith beliefs and in only One Church. That which is traceable historically provable to date back to the Apostles, to the time of Christ earthly Visitation. ….Today’s Catholic Church, alone chosen and Instituted by Christ Himself, as the ONLY “Church”  that existed anywhere in the world for about one thousand years before the Great Eastern Schism that fractured God’s perfect plan. The fact that it continues to exist is evidence of God’s protection and guidance.

 One:  Who did Christ chose? John.15: 16, 19 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide; so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.”

 Luke 22: 28-32 [28] “You are those who have continued with me in my trials; and I assign to you, as my Father assigned to me, a kingdom, that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. [the entire world]

“Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat,

but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail; and when you have turned again, strengthen your brethren.” Matthew 16:18-19 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” This authority and power is then given also to the Other Apostles, and through them to the Catholic Church Leaders to follow in Matthew 18: 18 … Matt.17: 1-4, 10-13 “And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain apart. And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his garments became white as light.  And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Eli’jah, talking with him. And Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is well that we are here; if you wish, I will make three booths here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Eli’jah.” …And the disciples asked him, “Then why do the scribes say that first Eli’jah must come?” He replied, “Eli’jah does come, and he is to restore all things; but I tell you that Eli’jah has already come, and they did not know him, but did to him whatever they pleased. So also the Son of man will suffer at their hands.” Then the disciples [Apostles] understood that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist’ …[This establishes the term “disciples and Apostles” as being One and the Same and this power and authority is handed on to All of the Apostles]… Matthew 18: 1-6 setting up verses 14-18 At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them, and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me; but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened round his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.  … “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. Truly, I say to you, ‘whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven‘.”

 Two:  Granting of “succession” as an absolute necessity in order that Christ Works to the Entire World is a possibility. 1st. Tim. 4:14-16 “Neglect not the grace that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with imposition of the hands of the priesthood.  Meditate upon these things, be wholly in these things: that thy profiting may be manifest to all Take heed to thyself and to doctrine: be earnest in them. For in doing this thou shall both save thyself and them that hear thee“.  … Matt.13:9-12 “He who has ears, let him hear.” Then the disciples came and said to him, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” And he answered them, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.”  For to him who has will more be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away. “

 SUCCESSION: God-chosen Ordained Leaders Share in Jesus’ Ministry and Authority

Matt. 10:1,40 – Jesus declares to His apostles, “he who receives you, receives Me, and he who rejects you, rejects Me and the One who sent Me.” Jesus freely gives His authority to the apostles in order for them to effectively convert the world. Matt. 16:19; 18:18 – the apostles are given Christ’s authority to make visible decisions on earth that will be ratified in heaven. God raises up humanity in Christ by exalting his chosen leaders and endowing them with the authority and grace they need to bring about the conversion of all. Without a central authority in the Church, there would be chaos (as there is in Protestantism).

Luke 9:1; 10:19 – Jesus gives the apostles authority over the natural and the supernatural (diseases, demons, serpents, and scorpions). Luke 10:16 – Jesus tells His apostles, “he who hears you, hears Me.” When we hear the bishops’ teaching on the faith, we hear Christ Himself. Luke 22:29 – the Father gives the kingdom to the Son, and the Son gives the kingdom to the apostles. The gift is transferred from the Father to the Son to the apostles. Num 16:28 – the Father’s authority is transferred to Moses. Moses does not speak on his own. This is a real transfer of authority. John 5:30 – similarly, Jesus as man does nothing of His own authority, but He acts under the authority of the Father. John 7:16-17 – Jesus as man states that His authority is not His own, but from God. He will transfer this authority to other men. John 8:28 – Jesus says He does nothing on His own authority. Similarly, the apostles will do nothing on their own authority. Their authority comes from God. John 12:49 – The father’s authority is transferred to the Son. The Son does not speak on his own. This is a transfer of divine authority. John 13:20 – Jesus says, “he who receives anyone who I send, receives Me.” He who receives the apostles, receives Christ Himself. He who rejects the apostles and their successors, rejects Christ. John 14:10 – Jesus says the Word He speaks is not His own authority, but from the Father. The gift is from the Father to Jesus to the apostles. John 16:14-15 – what the Father has, the Son has, and the Son gives it to the apostles. The authority is not lessened or mitigated. John 17:18; 20:21 as the Father sends the Son, the Son sends the apostles. The apostles have divinely appointed authority. Acts 20:28 – the apostles are shepherds and guardians appointed by the Holy Spirit 1 Peter 2:25 – Jesus is the Shepherd and Guardian. The apostles, by the power of the Spirit, share Christ’s ministry and authority. Eph. 2:20 – the Christian faith is built upon the foundation of the apostles. The word “foundation” proves that it does not die with apostles, but carries on through succession.”  http://www.scripturecatholic.com/apostolic_succession.html

 Three:  Only One “Church” chosen, Guided by God and Protected by God; the singular SOURCE for the fullness and accuracy of God‘s own truth. His catholic Church.;

 Psalms 127:1 Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.”

 Matthew 28: 16, 18-19 “Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” … John 14:16-18, “And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Counselor, to be with you for ever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him; you know him, for he dwells with you, and will be in you. “I will not leave you desolate; I will come to you” … verse 26 “But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, “ John 20:19-22 “ On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.”

 Four: One God Only: 3Mac.7: 16 “But those who had held fast to God even to death and had received the full enjoyment of deliverance began their departure from the city, crowned with all sorts of very fragrant flowers, joyfully and loudly giving thanks to the one God of their fathers, the eternal Savior of Israel, in words of praise and all kinds of melodious songs.” ….

Exod.3: 6,14-15 “And he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.  God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, `I AM has sent me to you.'” God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel, `The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you’: this is my name for ever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations”

 Five: One Church Only: Eph. 2:19-20 So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone,  in whom the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built into it for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.” …. John.10: 16 “And I have other sheep, that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will heed my voice. So there shall be one flock, one shepherd” …

 Six: One Faith [only one set of teachings to be believed] Eph. 4: 1-7 “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all lowliness and meekness, with patience, forbearing one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of us all, who is above all and through all and in all. But grace was given to each of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift. … John 3:27 John answered, “No one can receive anything except what is given him from heaven. …. Col.2: 8 “See to it that no one makes a prey of you by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ” …. Eph. 5: 6-10, 15-17 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for it is because of these things that the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience.  Therefore do not associate with them, for once you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord; walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true),  and try to learn what is pleasing to the Lord. Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of the time, because the [present] days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” … Acts.16: 5 “So the churches [THE ONLY “Churches in existence when the bible was 100% written are today’s Catholic Churches] …were strengthened in the [ONE] faith, and they increased in numbers daily.”

 Seven: Truth while always remaining Only One per issue; nevertheless takes different forms. Let’s review them briefly: QUOTES taken from the Catholic Encyclopedia …

 Logical Truth; between the knower and the outward expression which he gives to his

knowledge

 “Reality” is actually “what is” Objectively

“Ideas” are what We think or choose to think they are and therefore are Subjective [a lesser truth relative to “Objective truths“] Pjm

 “To judge that things are what they are is to judge truly. Every judgment comprises certain ideas which are referred to, or denied of, reality. But it is not these ideas that are the objects of our judgment. They are merely the instruments by means of which we judge. The object about which we judge is reality itself — either concrete existing things, their attributes, and their relations, or else entities the existence of which is merely conceptual or imaginary, as in drama, poetry, or fiction, but in any case entities which are real in the sense that their being is other than our present thought about them. Reality, therefore, is one thing, and the ideas and judgments by means of which we think about reality, another; the one objective, and the other subjective.”

 Moral Truth; and between the thing itself, as it exists, and the idea of it, as conceived by God

 “Hence a better definition of moral truth would be “the correspondence of the outward expression of thought with the thing as conceived by the speaker”. Moral truth, therefore, does not imply true knowledge. But, though a deviation from moral truth would be only materially a lie, and hence not blameworthy, unless the use of words or signs were intentionally incorrect, moral truth does imply a correct use of words or other signs. A lie therefore, is an intentional deviation from moral truth, and is defined as a locutio contra mentem; i.e. it is the outward expression of a thought which is intentionally diverse from the thing as conceived by the speaker. It is important to observe, however, that the expression of the thought, whether by word or by sign, must in all cases be taken in its context; for both in regard to words and to signs, custom and circumstances make a considerable difference with respect to their interpretation. Veracity, or the habit of speaking the truth, is a virtue; and the obligation of practising it arises from a twofold source. First, “since man is a social animal, naturally one man owes to another that without which human society could not go on. But men could not live together if they did not believe one another to be speaking the truth. Hence the virtue of veracity comes to some extent under the head of justice [rationem debiti]” (St. Thomas, Summa Theologiæ II-II.109.3). The second source of the obligation to veracity arises from the fact that speech is clearly of its very nature intended for the communication of knowledge by one to another. It should be used, therefore, for the purpose for which it is naturally intended, and lies should be avoided. For lies are not merely a misuse, but an abuse, of the gift of speech, since, by destroying man’s instinctive belief in the veracity of his neighbour, they tend to destroy the efficacy of that gift.”

 If I’m understanding this information correctly; one may be sharing a false understanding without intent to do so, or awareness that they are in fact spreading “Subjective truths” while holding them as “Objective realities.” [This despite clarity of teaching in the Bible]. That perhaps lessons moral- culpability; unless God has made it possible for one to know His Truth. It is this factor that illuminates the fact that we must not be judgmental; and allow God alone to be the Judge. And Judge he Will, based on what God makes possible for one to know, and therefore by Grave Moral Obligation to accept; life and practice.

 Here is what MUST happen:

 “MEISM” must be converted to “Theism”

 “Designer Religions” and personalized religious beliefs converted to:

God’s One Designed Faith and beliefs and Divinely Exposed Truths

 “My will” must become “Thy Will Be Done”

 Truth must be seen not as an option; a personal choice; or a “Designer-option,“ but the Devine Will of our Loving God. Truth, as the first fruit of Devine Wisdom must ought to be sought. Matt.7: 8 “For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened”  The initiative is left up to us and the results up to God.

 Like God who is One

Like Faith believes which are One in Objective reality

Like Church as desired by God; there is But One

Truth too is “One”

 I’d like to close this teaching document with a few random quotes I heard the other day on EWTN’S Daily Mass by a visiting priest: Father Larry Richards:

 “God is not out to get us; God is out to Love us”

 “Once we are Baptized we can call: “Abba…. Father”  Hi dad”

 “The God of All things Created is our dad”

 Speaking of the Judgment, Father quoted John 14:20: “In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.”

 Acts 13:26-27: “”Brethren, sons of the family of Abraham, and those among you that fear God, to us has been sent the message of this salvation. For those who live in Jerusalem and their rulers, because they did not recognize him nor understand the utterances of the prophets which are read every sabbath, fulfilled these by condemning him.

 Ps.2 Verses 10 to 11 “Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth. 

Serve the LORD with fear, with trembling”

 John.14 Verses 1 to 6 “Let not your hearts be troubled; believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way where I am going.” [“doubting”] Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me.”

 May God grant us His Truth, His Way, His Salvation,

 Love and prayers always,

Pat

Preaching God’s MERCY without Repentance Msgr. Charles Pope


Preaching Mercy Without Repentance

By Msgr. Charles Pope

“There are of course many ways of describing the pastoral, liturgical and theological struggles of our day. But one very simple way of describing current problems that touches on all these areas is simply this: that a presumptive attitude of mercy without repentance is both taught and widely held by far too many modern Catholics, and other Christians.

There is much talk of how God loves us, is rich in mercy, is kind and forgiving. And all of these things are true. But

another essential truth is that these gifts, these essential attributes of God, are accessed by repentance. It is repentance that opens the door to mercy, forgiveness, and kindness.

Perhaps an analogy will help.

Consider a man who is in very poor health. Perhaps he has a host of problems that surround obesity such as hypertension, cholesterol, diabetes etc. Now modern medicine has a lot to offer people who are struggling with poor health. The healing help includes everything from medicine to surgery, to information on nutrition etc. But in order for this man to access that healing help, a number of things are first necessary:

He may need others to testify to him some concern for his health, for many exhibit various levels of denial as to their condition especially when it involves things like overeating, smoking, or drinking.

He then needs to accept that his condition is serious enough that needs both help and change.

He needs to decide to seek the help of the medical profession and follow through on that decision by scheduling and keeping an appointment with a doctor.

Now, when he does this, AND ONLY when he does this, will the healing help of the medical profession unfold for him.

It is not enough for him to say, “Well isn’t it great that there are doctors, medical professionals, information, and medicine that can help me! It’s just wonderful that there are so many caring and professional people out there who can help and save me!” No, that is not enough. He has to make a change and actually reach out and develop a relationship with the medical community. He has to actually take the medicine. It is not enough to praise the medicine, he has to take it. It is not enough to feel reassured that there are people out there, he actually has to go to them, interact with them, and set a new course.

And this is an analogy for the spiritual life and repentance.

God’s offer of mercy and healing love stand, and are offered to everyone. But these magnificent gifts must be accessed through repentance. That is to say, we must come to understand the seriousness of our condition, turn to God, call upon his mercy, and begin to receive the glorious medicine he offers: the medicine of his Word, of the Sacraments, of prayer, and walking in fellowship with the Church, which he established as his ongoing presence and voice in the world (cf Acts 2:42).

The Greek word that is usually translated as repentance or repent is metanoia and it means

more than simply to clean up our act. Most literally it means to come to a new mind, or a new way of thinking. This is why God’s word, the teachings of the Church, and preaching are so essential for all of us. Whereas perverse councils separate us from God, (Wisdom 1:3), God’s truth proclaimed in the Scriptures and the teachings of the Church summon us back to him, summon us to a new mind, a new way of thinking. It convicts us of error and sin, but also announces the Savior who is the saving Truth who sets us free.

But of course it is not enough for us simply to hear of this new way of thinking, we must actually come to it, decide for it.

Repentance is to actually embrace this new mind, and this unlocks all the blessings the healings, the mercy, and the salvation that is promised. We must allow the grace of God, interacting with our freedom to effect an actual change, a decision in our life that changes the way we think, the way we act, and puts us into a saving relationship with the Divine Physician Jesus.

Like the patient above, we must

be brought to understand the seriousness of our condition, come to know that there is saving help available, and then by positive decision, rooted in grace, actually reach out to lay hold of that help.

Repentance is the door, is the key that unlocks mercy.

Yet too often today mercy is preached without reference to repentance.

Too many who preach and too many who hear have come to see mercy as granted without any human engagement. One simply has it automatically, no matter what.

Yet that is not what Scripture teaches

. Most notably, Simon Peter on Day One of Pentecot and the going for of the gospel preached a sermon laying out who Jesus is, and how we, in our sin and rebellion killed the very author of life. The text from Acts says,

When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit

. (Acts 2:37-38)

Thus, when asked what they are to do, Peter does not say, “Don’t worry, all is well,

God is mercy. He says, “Repent and baptized.” In other words, come to a new mind, come to your senses, reject your sins, be washed clean and come to Jesus. And this will unlock the supreme blessing of the Holy Spirit of God, who is the mercy of God, the love of God the very life and grace of God!

And how is this accessed? Repentance.

Isaiah had said

, The Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their sins,” declares the LORD (Is 59:20).

And to the Disciples in Emmaus Jesus said

, This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. (Luke 24:46-48)

And thus preachers and teachers in the Church, who are Christ’s witnesses,

must proclaim repentance that unlocks the forgiveness and mercy of God.

St. Paul warns

, In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent (Acts 17:30).

Thus those who preach and teach mercy without repentance are deceivers

and likely themselves deceived. And those who think of mercy without reference to repentance are deceived.

Faith and repentance are the supernaturally transformed and assisted human element that is necessary to unlock mercy and the graces of God

. To ignore or deny this amounts to a denial of human freedom and does not help God’s people. Rather it hinders them, for mercy is accessed through repentance, and without it, the door cannot open. Repentance must be preached to all the nations because repentance, by God’s grace opens the door.”

 

Questions & Answers on Infallibility


I appreciate all that you wrote; but most of my questions remain unanswered:

Question #1: Is Unam Sanctam, which declares, proclaims, and defines that “it is absolutely necessary for salvation that every human creature be subject to the Roman Pontiff,” an infallible teaching?[/QUOTE]

The answer to the last part is YES but only because it states “The Catholic Church” [not the Roman Pontiff”. and relates what the Church has taught nearly forever; It is a Defined Dogma of the RCC and it is this that make it infallible.

BUT it is the Church, NOT the Pontiff [Infallibility MUST be specifically declared] that makes this teaching binding on everyone.

[QUOTE]Question #2: If Unam Sanctam is infallible, did Pope Boniface VIII infallibly define any of the exceptions that are taught today in the CC? [/QUOTE]

Good Question

But not really relevant. While ALL Defined Dogma are unchangeable this means that the BASIC Truth can never change. It DOES NOT mean that the understanding cannot get better and aligned with current needs. Today’s Teaching HOLDS to the Basis Truth while ADDING the POSSIBILITY of other Christians who too have the sacrament of Baptism AND Belief in the Blessed Trinity; and WHO HAVE NEVER been exposed to the truths of the CC; MIGHT, through this sacramental unity and common belief under Precise conditions, also be included THROUGH the CC, in the POSSIBILITY of Salvation.

[QUOTE]Question #3: If Pope Boniface VIII did not define exceptions; at what point in history were “exceptions” infallibly defined? [/QUOTE]

[QUOTE]Partial reply:
Since, Pope Eugene IV seems to be saying the same thing, only more sternly; I think it is fair to ask the same questions about the Bull Cantate Domino of 1441.

Pope Eugene IV:
“The most Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that none of those existing outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics, can have a share in life eternal; but that they will go into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless before death they are joined with Her; [/QUOTE]

Friend, I’m unsure you if you have a right understating of the POWER of the Church to NOT CHANGE; BUT EXPAND understanding as it becomes both Inspired by the HS and made necessary by a changing world? There was and IS NO NEED for “today’s exceptions” because they frankly were not a factor of possible consideration when either of these documents were propagated.

Question #5: If it is infallible, did Pope Eugene IV infallibly define any of the exceptions that are taught today in the CC? I can’t imagine that he did. Who is left after “pagans, Jews, heretics, and schismatics” are professed to be headed into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless before death they are joined with the CC.

[QUOTE]Question #6: If Pope Eugene IV did not define exceptions; at what point in history were “exceptions” infallibly defined?[/QUOTE]

SAME as Q #1

[QUOTE]Through these 6 questions, I’m basically asking the same thing Catholic forum members CHESTERTONRULES and ron77nyc asked–I quoted them in post #329.

How did the Catholic Church go from “No salvation outside the Catholic Church” to the exceptions given in the Catechism and other places? No one has answered this; and I’ve given up hope that anyone will.[/QUOTE]

These ARE NOT EXCEPTIONS! They are the result of Historical World-wide changes that NEEDED to be addressed. The Base Teaching of. the CC DID NOT AND CANNOT be changed. NOTICE PLEASE these two passages: Mt. 16:19  “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, [DONE DEAL] and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” These terms MEAN unlimited power of Governance by Gods chose Popes. And in Jn. 20: 21-22 which is the Institution of THEE CC “Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” This is an actual transfer of POWER

From Christ to His Church: WITH THE SAME POWERS AND AUTHORITY THAT JESUS HAD ON EARTH.

Anyone seeking more information on The KEYS to heaven, please PM me.