The Bishop of Rome, Pope and Leader of the Catholic Church

Over the past few years, I have heard a lot of bad mouthing the Pope of the Catholic Church, from outside the Church and unfortunately from the inside of the Church, even from Bishops and Cardinals of the Church.

While I don’t always agree with the Pope’s comments, I do FIRMLY believe that the Cardinals that sat in Conclave to vote in, at the Will of God, our new leader, go through a process that in the end, all of the Cardinals MUST accept as the Will of God, and must accept this new Pope as the Leader of the Church as we are supposed to.

This means that the Cardinals, Bishops, Priest, Deacons, Religious Brothers and Sisters, and Layette MUST accept him as our leader, and accept those things that he says when he speaks from the Seat.  Not ALL he says comes from “The Seat”.

Those within the Church should NOT be bad mouthing our Pope, should not be speaking out against what he says or does, unless it is COMPLETELY against God and TRULY not of God.

To date, I have not seen him do such a thing in his sayings and doings, and especially in anything he has done from the Seat of Christ as the Vicar of Christ.

While I agree with his thought that a one world, with one government would be great, I do not think that any of our current governments meet that need yet, and definitely do not think that the UN should be that leadership.  But that said, over all his comments here are solid in that it would be ideal.  And it is God centered which is good.  Those that are bashing him for this comment on the world needing one government are wrong in doing so.

Our Pope was duly voted in by his peers though a God centered process, which we must all accept.  Remember, and I say this from the “right” side of the pews not the “left” side, the Catholic Church, based on the Bible and the Words of Christ, is a “liberal” (or “left”) leaning religion.  We SHOULD expose the core beliefs of the “liberal left” of love, caring and sharing with our neighbors.  That IS the Church.

But at the same time, it is a love and sharing by ALL, not just the rich. and not just the ones that have what you want, and not by just the ones that believe different that you.  It MUST be bidirectional and enacted by all, going both ways.

The Bible allows for self defense, and in today’s society that includes the right to the 2nd Amendment and the right to bear arms, etc.  Theft and the taking of a life to gain what the other has is NOT supported in the Bible or the Church.

Come back to God folks, and if you are Catholic, come back to supporting OUR Pope and leader.  He was placed there by God.  You don’t have to agree with him, but you MUST support him and accept what he says from the Seat of Peter, and do as he says if you wish to remain fully Catholic.

 

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The God of Abraham

Over the last several years, and especially in the last 10 or so years, I have heard MANY “Christians” say that the Muslim/Islamic God, The God of Abraham, is not the God of Christians, and I have wondered how much of the Bible, especially the Old Testament, these people have actually read and understood if they have read it.

In Genesis 16, we are told of the birth of Ishmael to Abram (later to be named Abraham by God) through Hagar, Sarai’s, Abram’s wife,  hand maiden.  When Hagar runs off after Sarai finds out she is pregnant with Sarai’s husband’s child, God comes to Hagar and informs her she will bear a son who is to be called Ishmael.

We are told this in Genesis 16:11.

Now, in Genesis 16:12 we are told:

12 He shall be a wild ass of a man,
his hand against everyone,
and everyone’s hand against him;
Alongside all his kindred
shall he encamp.”

This translates that the people of Ishmael will become a thorn in the sides of all other peoples.  Kind of like what is happening today.  This has been a growing problem since that time, nothing we should be surprised of!

Remember folks, in Chapter 17, we are also told that God will be the God of ALL of Abraham’s descendants.  This includes Ishmael, as much as we don’t want it to mean that…

So folks, while their understanding of God and His requirements of us may be different, their professed God is our God, however, I believe they are following Satan’s direction and not God’s even though they are still God’s people, per God Himself!

No, don’t get me wrong, I TOTALLY disagree with their actions, thoughts and practices.  I do firmly believe that they are in the wrong, and should be EVANGELIZED to the strongest degree, and should be protected from, but I do also firmly believe that they feel they are acting as the Christian God directs them.

In Christ,

Don

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The Rosary

One of the “Sacramentals” Catholic use to help themselves to understand and communicate with Jesus is the Rosary.  Many non-Catholics have a problem of one sort or another with the Rosary, but I am betting it is because they are not sure what is happening when they see the Rosary, and they think we are “Idol Worshiping”.  This could not be further from the truth though!

So, what is the Rosary?  First let me describe the “beads” and how they are “put together”.  The “standard” Rosary will start with a Crucifix of some sort and have a short “space” before having one bead, followed by a space, followed by three beads in close secession, followed by a space and a single bead.  After the single bead is a space, and then a “splitter” of some sort.  This splitter is often a medal, brief of a Saint, or other special, to the creator (and presumably the buyer), item.  From here we have a space followed by ten beads close together.  This is “one Decade” of Beads, counting the last solo bead before the “splitter” (my word, not the official word for this piece!).  After the tenth bead, there is a space, then a load bead/space/ten beads.  This goes on until there are five “Decades” which terminates at the “splitter” again.

Ok, that is the Rosary Beads themselves.

Now, let me explain what the Rosary is all about.  The Rosary consist of 4 “Mysteries of Christ Jesus’ Life”.  They are:

  • Glorious (Sunday and Wednesday (more on this in a bit))
  • Joyful (Monday and Saturday (and Sunday during Christmas Season))
  • Sorrowful (Tuesday, Friday (and Sundays during Lent))
  • Luminous (Thursdays)

On Sundays and Wednesdays we focus on the Glorious Mysteries, which are:

  • The Resurrection
  • The Ascension
  • The Descent of the Holy Spirit
  • The Assumption
  • The Coronation

The Joyful Mysteries are focused on on Mondays and Saturdays, and they are:

  • The Annunciation
  • The Visitation
  • The Nativity
  • The Presentation
  • The Finding of  Jesus in the Temple

On Tuesdays, Fridays and during the Lenten Season on Sundays as well, we focus on:

  • The Agony in the Garden
  • The Scourging at the Pillar
  • The Crowning with the Thorns
  • The Carrying of the Cross
  • The Crucifixion

And lastly on Thursday we focus on the Luminous Mysteries (these have been added to the prayers within the last 30ish years, and some do not use these Mysteries):

  • The Baptism of the Lord
  • The Wedding of Cana
  • The Proclamation of the Kingdom
  • The Transfiguration
  • The Institution of the Eucharist

Ok, you have all that, but you are probably still wondering what that all means, and how it comes together right?

  1. Starting at the Rosary we begin by giving ourselves a blessing in the form of crossing ourselves and saying “In the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” while holding the Crucifix in the dominate hand.
  2. Staying on the Crucifix, we then say the Apostles Creed.
  3. Moving to the first “solo” bead we then say the Lords Prayer.
  4. We then say, once for each of the three close beads, Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you.  Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.  Amen. (Here we have some people get upset, because we say “Mother of God”.  If you believe in the Trinity, and that Jesus is God personified, and you believe that Mary was His mother on Earth, does that not by “default” make her the Mother of God?  The rest of the text, including “Mother of My Lord (God)” is in the Bible.)
  5. After the three Hail Mary’s we say on the space before the solo bead two short prayers:  “Glory Be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end.  Amen.”  And “O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to Heaven, especially those who have the most need of thy mercy.
  6. Now, moving to the first solo bead we “announce” the first Mystery (and for my example today we will be using the Glorious Mysteries” by saying ‘”The First Glorious Mystery” The Resurrection’ then say the Our Father.
  7. At this point, until we get to the next mystery we are to contemplate that  mystery, in this case the Resurrection of Christ Jesus.  What I do, as do many others is announce an event in that time of Jesus’ life, and here I say “The Body of Jesus is placed in the Tomb on the evening of Good Friday”.  Then say the Hail Mary (as above).
  8. I then move to the next of ten beads and say “His soul descends into the realm of the dead to announce to the Just the tidings of their redemption.” followed by the Hail Mary.
  9. This goes on for the remainder of the ten beads, and the Glory Be and O my Jesus.
  10. We then move to the next solo bead and Announce the Second Mystery and follow the same course through the remaining of five Mysteries.
  11. After the last Mystery and O My Jesus we ask our Mother Mary to intercede on our behalf by saying:  Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope!  To you do we cry, poor banished children of Eve; to you do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears.  Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus.  O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.  Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worth of the promises of Christ.  Let us pray.  O God, whose only begotten Son, by His life, death, and resurrection, has purchased for us the rewards of eternal life, grant, we beseech they, that meditating upon these mysteries of the Most Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we may imitate what they contain and obtain what they promise, through the same Christ our Lord.  Amen.

So, the Rosary is a “sacramental” that is used to bring to our mind, each day, the life of Christ, and to ask for the intercessory prayers of Mary, Jesus’ Mother, in obtaining the Life of Christ in our life.  As in all request for Intercessory Prayer, we end our prayer with a direct request to God Himself, in support of our request through Mary, our intercessor.  And the beads are just a means of keep track of where you are in the meditation/prayer!

This process, without the sentences I add between each Hail Mary during the “Decades”, takes about 15 to 20 minutes, and with the added “forced thoughts via verbalization of the added sentences” adds about 10 to 15 minutes to the meditation/prayer.

I hope this helps you understand the Rosary better!

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