“If you want to know about God, there is only one way to do it: get down on your knees. You can make His acquaintance by investigation, but you can win His love only by loving. Most people who deny God do not do so because their reason tells them there is no God, for how could reason witness against Reason? Their denial is rather because of wishful thinking. They feel they would be happier if there were no God, for then they could do as they pleased. Think a little less about whether you deserve to be loved by Him; He loves you even though you are not deserving. It is His love alone that will make you deserving. Most of us are unhappy because we never give God a chance to love us; we are in love only with ourselves.”—Archbishop Fulton Sheen (Preface to Religion)
“What you see is the bread and the chalice; that is what your own eyes report to you. But what your faith obliges you to accept is that the bread is the Body of Christ and the chalice the Blood of Christ. … How is the bread His Body? And the chalice, or what is in the chalice, how is it His Blood? Those elements, brethren, are called Sacraments, because in them one thing is seen, but another is understood. What is seen is the corporeal species, but what is understood is the spiritual fruit. … `You, however, are the Body of Christ and His members.’ If, therefore, you are the Body of Christ and His members, your mystery is presented at the table of the Lord, you receive your mystery. To that which you are, you answer: `Amen’; and by answering, you subscribe to it. For you hear: `The Body of Christ!’ and you answer: `Amen!’ Be a member of Christ’s Body, so that your `Amen’ may be the truth.”—
St. Augustine, Sermons,  A.D. 391-430
Directly refuting Gary Wills' claim that Augustine didn't believe in Transubstantiation.
I posted this on my dcsunsets Tumblr about a year ago but decided to revise it a bit today. (See original post here.) I have here a descriptive list of five different Catholic profiles, because everyone knows that not all of us are the same. For those of you who are new to Catholic culture, you’ll find that there’s a little bit more to your friendly neighborhood Catholic that meets the eye. Enjoy!
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1. Newman Catholics, the Pope-Francis-Cover-Photo, ‘guise I just love Dominicans’, profile photo with the Archbishop, Matt-Maher blasting Jesus lovers. These are the friends who know the anticipated date of your favorite Blessed in Heaven, or details about the Pope’s upcoming encyclicals or ‘the Cardinal’s presiding over this Sunday’s Mass’ events. They’ve pretty much mastered apologetics, and they know the CCC from cover to cover. They’ve got at least six priest and nun friends on their speed dials and always have a Rosary in their pockets. These are the guys you want to go to when you want to know the latest in Catholic news or when you feel like listening to someone rant about how awesome the faith is from time to time.
2. Advocacy Catholics. These are the ones who probably do have a profile photo with the Archbishop, but it’s probably under the current “I Choose Life” posters they’ve plastered on their Facebook walls. These are your Catholic friends whose Facebook statuses are always flooded with debates, whose resumes are filled with “volunteered at Catholic Charities/Emergency Pregnancy Crisis Center” sorts of work. Their constant Facebook invitations to follow ‘Cassie Pease Designs’, ‘Life Teen’, ‘Becket Fund for Religious Liberty’, or ‘Imagine Sisters’ are getting annoying, but it’s good that they’re always on top of these things in the media. They can argue both theologically and secularly, and they’re the ones who sent out the ‘HABEMUS PAPI’ text the second the white smoke appeared.
3. Latin-Tridentine-Catholics, the ones you don’t really hear from anymore because they’ve deactivated their Facebooks and can only be reached via email or by tapping them on the shoulder after the 5AM Mass at the Friary. You can’t invite them out for breakfast afterward because they’re fasting on bread and water until the end of their Divine Mercy novenas. These friends are the prayer warriors and Mass ninjas who sing in the Gregorian Chant choir and are masked under their veils at the Tridentine Mass. Now these friends are especially cool because when they tell you they’ll pray for you, they’re praying for your Purgatory time to lessen and offering twelve holy hours for you. After saying a five-minute prayer in Latin before eating their meals, feel free to ask them about their opinions of Opus Dei/Neocatechumenal Way, and be ready for an earful. After hanging out with these guys, you feel like you just finished a five-day retreat in the wilderness and the Lord.
4. FOCUS Catholics. These guys are really lighthearted, easy to talk to, and for some reason are always free for coffee whenever you call them. They probably have a leather-bound Ignatian Bible, are still discerning their vocation though it’s been five years, and for some reason always manage to bring a new friend to Mass each week. These are the friends that you’d introduce to someone who is skeptical about the faith, because they’re the most inviting, welcoming, and basically the coolest Catholics you know. What’s nice about these guys is that when you’re going through a spiritual slump or are a bit confused on your life journey, they have the best guidance and you feel like you’re talking to a Priest or something even though they’re just normal laypeople like you are. Usually found with a beard, a guitar, or a Franciscan cross (the one that looks like a T). They probably have multiple copies of ‘How to Find Your Soulmate Without Losing Your Soul’ and have more than once quoted St. Catherine of Siena’s ‘you will set the world on fire’ spiel on their Facebook statuses.
5. Casual-but-cool Catholics. These Catholics never fail to cross themselves when passing by a Church, and might have accidentally genuflected before entering the seats of a movie theater. These guys are usually seen giving up chocolate for Lent, hanging a rosary in their rearview mirrors, and watching Passion of the Christ every Good Friday. They tried CatholicMatch for a second, but it wasn’t really their thing. Although these friends haven’t yet thought about how their relationship with Jesus Christ has changed their lives, haven’t ever joined a Bible Study, and probably don’t post Scripture verses on their Facebook statuses, you know that these are the friends who will always be down to pray a Rosary or go to Mass with you.
“Dear children, the reason that I am with you, my mission, is to help you for ‘good’ to win, even though this does not seem possible to you now. I know that you do not understand many things as I also did not understand everything, everything that my Son explained to me while He was growing up alongside me – but I believed Him and followed Him. I ask this of you also, to believe me and to follow me. However, my children, to follow me means to love my Son above everything, to love Him in every person without making differences. For you to be able to do this, I call you anew to renunciation, prayer and fasting. I am calling you for the Eucharist to be the life of your soul. I am calling you to be my apostles of light who will spread love and mercy through the world. My children, your life is only a blink in contrast to eternal life. And when you come before my Son, in your hearts He will see how much love you had. In order to spread love in the right way, I am asking my Son, through love, to grant you unity through Him, unity among you, unity between you and your shepherds. Through them my Son always gives Himself to you anew and renews your soul. Do not forget this. Thank you.”—Our Lady’s Message to Mirjana Dragicevic-Soldo, August 2, 2014
“Brother, if you commit a sin and take pleasure in it, the pleasure passes but the sin remains. But if you do something virtuous even though you are tired, the tiredness passes but the virtue remains.”—Saint Camillus de Lellis (via theraccolta)
Thanks be to God, I have recently been accepted into next year’s novitiate class for the Eastern Province of the Order of Preachers, also known as Dominicans, set to begin on July 25th. (Brief bios of myself and the 11 other men accepted for my class—http://vocations.opeast.org/2014/06/03/announ…
Need to tithe? Help my friend Joe! He’s so cool/nice/holy and he’s going to be a Dominican.
“You can do more than pray after you have prayed, but you cannot do more than pray until you have prayed. Pray often, for prayer is a shield to the soul, a sacrifice to God, and a scourge to Satan.”—John Bunyan (via fearless-and-bold-for-christ)
“Most High, glorious God,
enlighten the darkness of my heart and give me
true faith, certain hope, and perfect charity,
sense and knowledge, Lord, that I may carry out
Your holy and true command. Amen.”—Prayer Before the Crucifix, St. Francis of Assisi (via acatholicvibe)
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