Saint Luke the Evangelist
The four evangelists of the New Testament wrote differently. Matthew’s style is that as a teacher; Mark, a preacher; John, a theologian; and Luke, a historian.
The four evangelists of the New Testament wrote differently. Matthew’s style is that as a teacher; Mark, a preacher; John, a theologian; and Luke, a historian.
The confrontation between Europe and Islam happened as early as the seventh century.
Philosophers stress the rationale for angels. “A perfect God would necessarily create the best of all possible worlds. So He created angels who do not belong to man’s concept of matter, time and space.”
Who can fathom the love of God for men? He created a perfect world for man’s first parents, Adam and Eve, endowed them with wisdom of immensely high order and freedom from suffering and death. But, they still committed the “pride of life” and wanted to be gods.
God destined the Blessed Virgin Mary, the epitome of sanctity, to be the Mother of Christ, so she was fashioned with exceptional holiness. She found “favor with God” (Luke 1:30), which she acknowledged with total humility.
After 40 years as the second king of Israel, David’s second son with Bathseba, Solomon, succeeded David.
Three kings ruled the Kingdom of Israel: Saul, David and Solomon. David was regarded as the greatest.
The Lord gave the 10 commandments to Moses for the newly delivered nation to follow to enable them to worship God properly.
Jacob went to Egypt after a famine in Bethel. Joseph, the 11th son of Jacob, was an official next to the pharaoh.
ABRAHAM is a son of Terah, one of the three sons of Noah. Terah is the first and greatest patriarch of Israel.
Noah, a righteous man, is the son of Lamech, whose ancestry can be traced to Seth, one of Adam’s son, born when he was 135 years old (Genesis 5:3).
By Corazon Damo-Santiago
Saint Gemma Galgani is blessed with the gifts of supernatural knowledge, ecstasy, vision, prophecy, stigmata and levitation.
The Holy Shroud is the cloth that was used to wrap Jesus’ dead body after his crucifixion. It is a 4.4 meters by 11 meters material made of linen.
The Sacred Heart is Christ, the Savior, the Word Incarnate, the Redeemer, the Son of God. Through the ages, Jesus appeared to saints, with assigned tasks to honor His Sacred Heart. To Saint Lutgard (Lutgardis) of Aywieres is attributed the “first mystic revelation of Christ’s heart.”
Saint Catherine of Ricci, a stigmatic, unfolds the Passion of Christ in 17 scenes that lasts 28 hours, “conversed aloud as if enacting a drama.”
God, through the centuries, revealed Himself to holy people to inspire them in their works for His kingdom. Although Jesus, while on earth, alluded to the Holy Spirit in some events in His discourses and teachings, never was it fully revealed.
There were 162 statues of saints in Saint Peter’s Square but not one image of Our Lady. This was Msgr. Josemaria Escriva’s side remark to Pope John Paul II during gathering of university students from different part of the world in Rome in 1980.
An epitome of courage, she followed Jesus to Calvary, unmindful of indignant Jews, high-strung Roman soldiers, edgy crowds with volatile emotions that can crush her to death.
So stressed and terrified because the next-door neighbor’s house was on fire, Madam Madeleine Barat gave birth to her third child.
Three flowers are cited in the bible: the crocus, lily and the rose. Among the three, the rose is the most prominent—the most “perfect flower in beauty, looks and even smell.”
To guard the “purest and most perfect human being,” the Marian Movement of the Laity for the Philippine Church in Mary, noted the angels’ participation in the life of the Blessed Mother.
Mary is the queen of May—the month of flowers and new growth. The ancient Greeks dedicated the month of May to Artemis, the goddess of virginity, chastity, childbirth and fertility, among others.
BEveryday there is news of men and women who express concern about violence to children, sex trafficking, sexual assaults on helpless kids, children dying of hunger, capital punishment for the young and even bullying. These while life is considered sacred and should be valued.
“Jesus cried out in a loud voice. Father into your hands I commend my spirit” (Luke 23:46). “The veil of the sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom” (Mark 15:38).
The French Revolution targeted the nobility and the Catholic Church. Considered as a Reign of Terror, anti-Catholic Church provisions outlawed public and private worship and religious education, closed churches, forced abjuration of priests of their religious vows and even forced the clergy to marry.
Princess Elizabeth of Hungary refused to wear the bejewelled crown of gold on her wedding day. “How can I, when our dear Lord wears but a crown of thorns.”
‘Your convent will be the house of the sick; your cell, a hired room; your chapel, the parish church; your cloister, the streets of the city or the wards of the hospital; your enclosure, obedience; your grating, the fear of God; your veil, holy modesty.”
By Corazon Damo-Santiago
In a mundane world, money is one of the most coveted possession. The World Inequality Report 2018 declared that the rich becomes richer, the poor poorer.
Margaret was alarmed when Arsenio of Montepulciano did not come home from his visit to one of his estates. Her anxiety worsened when his dog arrived the next day, alone, and tugged her to follow.
When the Lady opened her hands, light from it penetrated the earth. Lucia de Jesus dos Santos and her cousins, Jacinta and Francisco Marto, saw a sea of fire.
‘I beg you not to leave me tonight so that we might talk until morning the joys of heavenly life.”
A queue stands at the center aisle of the altar in churches every February 3. The faithful await for the Sacramental Rite to be administered by the priest. The priest rests two long candles in the form of a Saint Andrew’s cross on the neck, prays for the intercession of Saint Basil to heal sore and other throats ailments believers.
He wore a colorful poncho with a sombrero, the attire worn by cattle herders. He rode his mule Malacara to oversee his poor parishioners around Sierra Grandes.
Montanesimo, the portrayal of Jesus as a child in regal vestments, is a pious practice in the Santero (sculpture) Culture among the nobility in 1300.
There is no need to be born, to suffer indignations and be crucified on a cross.
The star, the bright light that heralded Jesus’ coming, is the light that has risen “on the people who sit in darkness…in a land overshadowed by death” (Matthew 4:16).
Jesus, the Truth, the Life and the Way is Mary’s Son. She willed to be the Mother of the Redeemer, knew what it meant from the beginning and kept it all in her heart.
Jesus was born on the first Christmas Day. His coming to the world in man’s likeness was not without unreparable consequences. Lucifer, the greatest of all angels, could not accept the “undignified plan to bow to a God of flesh and bones.”
“Misa de Gallo sa simbahan,
On December 8, 1854, the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary was declared a dogma, although the Holy Mother was acknowledged as the most holy of person on earth by the early Church.
John pleaded that his severed right hand that was hanged in the market place be returned. The caliph granted the request.
When both mind and body assert that you are dying, rejoice if you are in the state of grace. The time to live forever joyfully is at hand.
“Eternal Father, I offer Thee, the Most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus in union with the masses said throughout the world today for all the Holy Souls in purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the universal church, those in my home and within my family. Amen.”
O Lord my God…
Anxious, bewildered, crushed, disillusioned or grief-stricken? When hopelessly lost, a prayer to Saint Jude, one of the 12 apostles of Jesus, may solve your predicament.
“You sinners, when you want my help, call me Mother of Mercy, yet at the same time, do not cease by your sins to make me a Mother of sorrows and anguish” (Saint Alphonsius de Liguori in the Glories of Mary).
Archbishop Romero concluded his sermon on the Parable of the Grain of Wheat: “Those who surrender to the service of the poor through love of Christ will live like the grain of wheat that dies. If it were not to die, it would remain a solitary grain. The harvest comes because of the grain that dies…. We know that every effort to improve society, above all when society is so full of injustice and sin, is an effort that God blesses; that God wants; that God demands of us.”
Saint Pope Pius V declared October 7 as the Feast of Our Lady of Victory. He later changed it to Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary after the Holy League defeated the Turks in the Battle of Lepanto, off the coast of Greece, in a place now called Naupactos.
“Angel of God, my guardian dear. To whom His love commits me here.
“I need to love You more and more, but I don’t have any more love in my heart. I have given all my love to You. If You want more, fill my heart with Your love, and then oblige me to love You more and more and I will not refuse you.”
Hildegard of Bingen, “one of the few prominent woman in medieval church,” was declared saint by Pope Benedict XVI on May 10, 2012, in equipolente, or equivalent canonization. The pope signed a decree to make it official.
Popes of the Catholic Church condemned chattel slavery, or personal slavery. Pope Pius II in 1462 called it a great crime. “Pope Paul III in 1537 called the exploiters of the practice the instruments of Satan.”
France was populated with Catholics prior to social and political upheavals in 1787. The agitations reached initial climax in 1789, thus, the expression Revolution of 1789 to denote the end of ancient regime in France.
The celebration of the queenship of Mary is significantly related to the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Having pledged themselves and all concerns to God, many people think that religious and spiritual people do not experience spiritual dryness and inclinations to sinful ways.
SAINT Mary Major is a fifth- century basilica in Liberiana 27 in the upper town of Bergamo, Northern Italy. It is dedicated to the Blessed Mother of God.
Busy is a word that describes everyone. What is man busy of? Money, power, honors, with only a few who serve God.
Brigitta Birgersdotter was 10 years old when she heard a homily on the passion of Christ that left a deep impression in her mind.
Pope Sixtus V bestowed on Saint Bonaventure the title “Angelic and Seraphic Doctor of the Church” in recognition of his unfathomable love for God and outstanding theological writings.
An exemplar of a couple whose depth of togetherness, in faith in and love for Christ, is Aquila and Priscilla. Saint Paul fondly called them “fellow workers in Christ Jesus.”
Peace means serenity, calmness, quietude or stillness. But during the early times when the rulers of countries desired to acquire foreign lands or settle disputes, they go on invasions and conquests. So peace is the absence of war.
All saints, except John, are honored on the day of their death. John is one of three church personalities who were honored by the church on their birthdays. John on June 24, the Blessed Mother on September 8 and Christ on December 25.
MAGDALENE’S passion: To be close to every person to discover and experience together the concern God has for life, and proclaim the goodness of God.
“Lord, who can grasp all of the wealth of just one of Your words? What we understand is much less than we leave behind, like thirsty people who drink from a fountain. For Your word, Lord, has many shades of meaning, just as those who study have many different points of view.
Mother Earth is man’s home. Thus, man ought to live in harmony with nature. The Celtics, Frisians and Saxons of Europe in the Middle Ages did not only take care of nature. They revered, worshipped and performed devotional rituals to honor trees.
Magdalene is an “ecstatic saint.” She desired a “hidden life,” but her mystical experiences or religious ecstasies lasted for years.
After Saint Dymphna’s death, some lunatics wandered in the countryside of Gheel in Belgium. They slept there and woke up cured. Since then she was called the “patron saint of people afflicted with mental and spiritual afflictions” (Saint Dymphna, www.saint-mike.org). Many miracles were recorded at her shrine in Gheel.
One October morning, passing through Borgo Alto, Mary saw a large building with a courtyard. Many children were playing.
‘IN this city one finds many very important pious and charitable works. However, there is one great need, and that is a hospital or a house where the innocent, the poor and the mad can be cared for. There are many such people wandering this city.”
“A househelp is not holy if she is not busy. Lazy people of our position is fake holiness,” Saint Zita said.
The sheep is an animal that cannot survive on its own. It is a species with an “intelligence quotient close to the bottom of the scale,” said David Murray in HeadHeartHand.
On April 16, 1783, a Holy Wednesday, Benedict Joseph Labre dragged himself to Saint Maria dei Monte, the cardinalatial titular church in Rome, where he heard Mass every morning.
Today is the Feast of the Divine Mercy. It was instituted in obedience to the Lord’s instruction to Saint Faustina Kowalska.
EASTER is derived from the word Eostre, the pagan goddess of the season of the sun and rebirth during Ostarum, a pagan spring festival. It was a spring of the nomad Jews, who coated their tent poles with blood of animals to frighten hostile spirits.
At early morning on the first day of the week while still dark, Mary of Magdala went to the tomb of Jesus. She carried burial clothes and spices so Jesus can be buried properly in accordance with Jewish custom.
Many people in Nazareth and other places where Mosaic Law, or Law of Moses, was observed died with Joseph. God made known this fact to Joseph who wished to carry out his assignment as Patron of The Dying.
Saint Paul is one of the two pillars of the church together with Saint Peter, the first pope. While in prison, Paul wrote to Timothy to express his firmness in faith even in adverse situations: “I have fought the good fight to the end. I have run the race to the finish. I have kept the faith” (2 Timothy 4:6-7). Good is an understatement, for Paul lived his life only for Christ after his conversion.
Ash Wednesday is a ritual of truth. The priest makes the sign of the cross on the forehead of everyone on the queue. He tells each one: “For you are dirt and to dirt you shall return” (Genesis 3:19). Simply said: Man is a corruptible being.
Francisco and his younger sister, Jacinta, with their cousin, Lucia de Jesus dos Santos, have walked on holy grounds at Cova da Iria, saw and spoke with the Angel of Peace thrice in the fields of Casa Velha, spoke several times with the Blessed Mother on the holm tree at Cova da Iria and witnessed the miracle of the sun at Fatima.
The beautiful Lady of Lourdes, Bernadette Soubirous, the hallowed cave on a huge cliff of Massabielle at the foothills of Pyrenees mountain range, which separate France and Spain—these will forever be associated with the celebrated appearances of the Blessed Mother in 1858.
There are children with faces only a mother can love for beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, according to Margaret Hungerford. Too, true beauty consists in purity of heart, Mahatma Gandhi said.
The family is the bedrock of society. In this smallest unit of social group, a child is familiarized about moral absolutes. He or she learns how to love and be loved, that life is great with a purpose and a holy end.
Dismal and pathetic it was to be a woman before the advent of Christianity. Dreary and frightful, as well. In societies where husbands enjoy patria protestas (paternal power) as head of a family or families, they had the power of life and death over their wives and children.
Tabula rasa is a theory of knowledge and psychology that compare the mind to a blank writing tablet which “responds to ideas and convert them to knowledge.” Akin to a white paper full of awareness, it receives ideas from senses and responds to experiences.
Millions of Filipinos venerate the Poong Itim na Nazareno (Black Nazarene), a life-sized statue of Jesus fallen under the weight of the cross on his way to calvary.
New Year’s Day was celebrated on March 25 in the Early Medieval period in Christian Europe. The feast, called Lady Day in England, is the start of the Legal Year until 1752.
There was nothing extraordinary on the first Christmas Eve. God, though, did not make it so ordinary.
An old European folklore narrates that Jesus was born at the stroke of midnight on December 25. To the rooster was assigned the honorable task of announcing Jesus’ birth. So, the rooster flies to the roof of the stable to proclaim “in a human voice—Christ is born.”
On October 25, 1970, Pope Paul VI canonized 40 saints of England and Wales. During the November 1969 deliberations, Dr. Michael Ramsey, archbishop of Canterbury, said the proposed canonization might rekindle animosity, which is detrimental to ecumenism efforts.
Eligius was tasked to shod the hoof of a horse. But the horse was reluctant. A mystique, he thought that the horse is possessed by a demon. He cut the leg while the horse remained standing on three legs. After he has reshod the amputated leg, he made the sign of the cross and connected it without difficulty.
Christ is a Greek word, which means Messiah in the Jewish language. The Jews believe He is the Anointed One, the King who would deliver Israel from the Romans.
Death by firing squad. This was the verdict given Josef Kalinowski after a formal declaration of his participation as war minister of Vilna (Lithuania) in the insurrection against Russian occupation in Poland.
Orthodox is derived from the Greek word Orthodoxia, which means the right opinion or adherence to correct or accepted creeds. The Orthodox Church, founded by Jesus Christ and his apostles on Pentecost Sunday of 33 AD, witnessed the descent of the Holy Spirit. For decades the Church has been divided between the Latin-speaking West with Rome as its center, and the Greek-speaking East with Constantinople as its seat.
Zechariah is dumb. So, when asked what name he would give his son, he wrote on the tablet—John. His tongue was loosened and he burst into a “prophetic exhortation” about the greatness of God.
Seemingly, the togetherness of Saints Simon the Zealot and Jude Thaddeus had been destined. Both apostles preached the words of God in Persia.
Saint John Paul II died in 2005, the year he had earlier proclaimed as Year of the Eucharist—“the source and summit of life and mission of the church.”
“Tell King Louis XIV of France to consecrate the country to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.”