Quiet Corner
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The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception is a celebration of the mystery of divine election. From all eternity God has elected and selected certain souls on whom he has showered definite blessings and whom he has challenged with specific adversities. more
Father Joseph Egan was a long-time dogmatic theology professor at St. Bernard’s Seminary in Rochester, New York. It was always his contention that St. Luke wrote Acts of the Apostles in order to justify the missionary activity to the Gentiles by St. Paul in light of the prior if somewhat limited outreach to the Gentile world by St. Peter. By the time St. Luke was writing Acts, St. Peter’s stature within the Christian community was acknowledged and respected enough that any precedent St. Peter had initiated could justifiably be cited as reason for other followers of Christ, like St. Paul and St. Barnabas, to venture out into similar even if more extensive challenges and apostolates. Accordingly, St. Luke devotes an entire chapter of Acts to the conversion by St. Peter of the Gentile but God-fearing centurion Cornelius and his household. more
Kim Davis, the beleaguered county clerk from Frankfort, K.Y., stopped issuing all marriage licenses in June after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling effectively re-defined marriage for the nation. Two homosexual couples and two heterosexual couples sued her. more
A local cable-channel preacher was adamant that the presence of Christ in the Eucharist is strictly symbolic. His argument did give the viewer pause. more
No one receives a harsher assessment in the New Testament than the religious leaders of Jesus’ generation. Jesus excoriates the pious shepherds of his day labeling them “… brood of vipers … blind guides …whitened sepulchers. …” more
Surely no line of Scripture is more misleadingly quoted than Jesus’ pronouncement to “…render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.” Not only is this quote broadly used to justify the separation of church and state, but more deviously it is being extended to endorse the separation of religion and society. Progressive politicians no longer mention freedom of religion but rather refer cleverly to freedom of worship. Religion, of course, embraces the fullness of the believer’s life: church, politics, business, family, etc. All human activity has a religious dimension. Worship on the other hand is what takes place within a church building. Worship is liturgical, ritualistic and ceremonial. The immediate focus of worship is the sacred; the broader focus of religion must include the secular. Progressive politicians have no problem with parishioners lighting candles, whiffing incense and singing hymns. That’s worship. But some government leaders do have trouble with religious persons protecting traditional marriage, shielding the unborn, defending authentic conception, preserving dignity at the end of life, limiting medical experimentation and maintaining cultural vestiges from America’s theistic roots. more
A devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows is not a piety that one would associate with the post-Vatican II Church. more
The choice of the name Francis by our present Holy Father has expectedly generated a renewed interest in the life and work of the ever-popular St. Francis of Assisi. By a serendipitous co-incidence, Dominican Father Augustine Thompson, professor at Berkeley, recently authored an extensive biography on the saintly poor man. more
The Blessed Virgin Mary emerges twice in the Gospel according to St. John. Her initial arrival on the scene occurs in this coming Sunday’s Gospel account, the wedding feast at Cana, and her final appearance is made at the death and crucifixion of Jesus on Mount Calvary. Thus St. John frames Jesus’ entire pubic life with vignettes that feature Mary. more
A common but misleading expression is the phrase “Mass facing the people.” Equally misleading are the words “Mass with back to the people” or “Mass facing the wall.” Regardless of the architecture of a church or the interior design of a sanctuary, Mass is always, or always should be, offered facing God. more
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