Life-in-Christ

Knowing Christ & His Message through Scripture, the Catechism, & the Catholic Church

Let us pray….

 

 

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Are you a Christian or aren’t you? Do you believe or do you doubt?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

St. Thomas (1st century)
The apostle Thomas is famous for doubting the resurrection of Jesus when his fellow apostles told him about it; but if he is the skeptical apostle, he is also the believing apostle, for having seen and touched a risen man, he made the immediate leap of faith and so became the first apostle to call Jesus God.

We, as Christians, are called to make an act (acts) of faith.  Let us pray today for the courage and resolve to be faithful witnesses to our faith.

Father, let our celebration of the feast of Saint Thomas the Apostle
  be the source of his unfailing help and protection.
Fill us with your life-giving grace
  through faith in your Son, Jesus,
  whom Thomas acknowledged to be his Lord and God.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
  who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
  one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.
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It is easy to follow the crowd…

As noted previously, when searching for Truth, once you find it, there are certain duties that arise…

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Seek the Truth where Truth can be found.

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And if you honestly search for the Truth, you will find it.  And in finding it you will know a peace and a joy that following the crowd will never provide.

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And the list of what society will seek to redefine has endless possibilities, & unfortunate consequences…

Before one seeks to re-define, & re-make something, proper dialogue  requires one to properly & intelligently try to first understand what it is that they a re seeking to alter.  As this pertains to the society in which we live, 2 foundational principles are needed: Truth & Love.Image result for truth beauty goodness quotes

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Let us not be afraid of Love & Truth… when these 2 become separated from one another 2 things occur: Love without Truth = uninhibited emotions that eventually hurts and wounds.  Truth without Love = a hammer that destroys one’s willingness to listen and live the Truth…

When both Love & Truth are missing, we get an Emotional Ignorance that guides for better or worse (& usually for worse) all decisions.  However, when Truth & Love are both present, the result is a Goodness that benefits all of society.

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Does the Catholic Church seek to lead us to Truth-Love-Goodness? How do you know?

As society struggles (perhaps unknowingly for the triad of Truth, Love, & Goodness), we perhaps are mistaken in what it is that we are seeking to alter.  Are we even aware of the truth and goodness in that which we are altering?

As I ponder the mindset that has seemingly overtaken our society, I am reminded of the story of the The Black Star Diamond.  The Black Star stone was reportedly found by 12-year-old Roy Spencer in the mid-1930s in the Queensland gem fields near Anakie. Roy showed the stone to his miner father, Harry, who assumed that it was merely a large black crystal. Not realizing the value of the stone with its rough exterior, the family used it as a doorstop in their home for over a decade, until Harry took a closer look and discovered the gem hidden within. Black Star of Queensland Star SapphireThe sapphire was eventually sold to the Kazanjian brothers, jewelers in Los Angeles, who painstakingly shaped it to a smooth convex oval of 733 carats. As the stone was revealed and shaped, a perfect asterism, or six pointed star, was revealed in its center – a phenomenon formed by the reflection of light from matter that was trapped in the stone when it was created millions of years ago.  Today, this Sapphire is valued at $100 million dollars.  What was once considered something worthy of nothing more than a rock to use as a doorstop, is worth millions of dollars and is on display at the Ontario museum….

As in this story of the Black Star Diamond – once the truth of its value and its substance was discovered & accepted – the consequences were amazing.  If however, they had chosen to ignore the Truth of what the “rock” actually was – this valuable treasure would have remained a worthless doorstop. 

As we search for the Truth, let us not try to conceal what we discover – but reveal it with Love, and see the invaluable result of Goodness…

The Unique Meaning of Marriage…Can it be redefined?

Statements Made – Question that needs to be asked: Does any human have the right to redefine Marriage? – to redefine what God has ratified & blessed? – to redefine what is/& has always been considered part of the natural law?

Cardinal Dolan: President Obama’s Remarks on Marriage ‘Deeply Saddening’Read more…

The above quote was from 2012…

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The below quote is from Friday, June 26, 2015:

Landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizes gay marriage nationwide

What does the Catholic Church teach about Marriage? The marriage covenant, by which a man and a woman form with each other an intimate communion of life and love, has been founded and endowed with its own special laws by the Creator… Read full teaching

Jesus said to his disciples: “As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. “I have told you this so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete.” (Jn 15:9-11).

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What Does Natural Law Teach?:
Marriage is a natural institution that predates government.Every human society has acknowledged that the sexual union of man and woman matters because it creates the next generation.  While Jesus elevates Christian marriage to a sacrament, the complementarity of the sexes and the natural meaning of marriage can be known through reason without appealing to Scripture.

What is Jesus asking of us? What does the Natural Law require of us? What does Marriage mean – for me, for society, for the living out of God’s love? There is a reason why Marriage is what it is – I invite you to read the following: The Difference is the Difference.

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Indeed, how good is the Lord…

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Christianity: Belief & Action

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God’s commandments are these:
that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and that we love one another as he told us to.
Whoever keeps his commandments
lives in God and God lives in him.
We know that he lives in us
by the Spirit that he has given us.
                                    1 John 3:23-24
We should throw off everything that hinders us,

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especially the sin that clings so easily, and keep running steadily in the race we have started. Let us not lose sight of Jesus, who leads us in our faith and brings it to perfection: for the sake of the joy which was still in the future, he endured the cross, disregarding the shamefulness of it, and from now on has taken his place at the right of God’s throne.  Hebrews 12:1-2

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The greatest act a christian can perform is to live their faith….

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Do not be afraid…

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Scripture repeatedly tells us to not be afraid…

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. (Psalm 23:4)
For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. (Isaiah 41:13)
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:6) Image result for catholic- quotes
For God gave us not a spirit of fearfulness; but of power and love and discipline. (2 Timothy 1:7)
The Lord is my light and my salvation–whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life–of whom shall I be afraid? (Psalm 27:1)
So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can Man do to me?” (Hebrews 13:6)
Do not be afraid to let God work in your life.  Do not let be afraid to be the beautiful, amazing, saintly person that God created you to be.
As you take a few minutes in prayer today, ask the Holy Spirit to show you those areas in your life where fear is taking control; then, ask our Lord to give you strength to be transformed from fear into action!
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St Thomas More

Comfort in tribulation can be secured only on the sure ground of faith – holding as true the words of Scripture and the teaching of the Catholic Church.  – St. Thomas More

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St. Thomas More (1478-1535)
Thomas was a friend of King Henry VIII and the Lord Chancellor of England–a position of power second only to the king. When the king sought a divorce and declared himself the head of the Church in England, Thomas opposed him and resigned. He was imprisoned in the Tower of London and martyred.
One of his more famous sayings, & a poignant reminder for those of us seeking to following Christ & His teachings: The things, good Lord, that I pray for, give me thy grace to labour for. Amen.Image result for st thomas more

Every time and culture presents its own difficult choices, either for or against, our beliefs & decision as Christians to follow Christ.  This is why the Church holds up for us saints & martyrs — they serve as inspiration for us.  Although the path to Eternal Life, Love, & Happiness is difficult – many others have traveled the path, and are now where we hope one to be as well.

Let us look to these holy men and women, so that at the end of our days we may be able to say with them: I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.  2 Timothy 4:7

Happy Father’s Day!

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Let us pray for our Fathers!

 

 

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M Crooks, Doctorate Pastoral Ministry: 2009-2012 http://xtnfamily.tumblr.com/