Catholic Relief Services: Caught in the Terror of Nepal’s Latest Quake

05/13/2015 Comment
Catholic Relief Services.

Jennifer Poidatz (above) was in the middle of supervising 37 CRS staff distributing aid in Nepal when the second disaster hit.

– Catholic Relief Services.

KATHMANDU — A terrifying second earthquake struck Nepal on Tuesday, wreaking new terror and destruction just as the afflicted Himalayan nation had begun to recover from the first. Now emergency relief workers from Catholic Relief Services share another bond solidarity with Nepal’s Catholic Church: they too are survivors.

All 37 CRS staff in Nepal are safe and accounted for, and so far — although lines of communication and transport are badly damaged — the May 12 earthquake appears to have taken far fewer lives than the 8,000 victims of the April 25 quake, even though both tremblors were comparable in their intensity (7.3 and 7.8 magnitudes respectively).

As Wednesday night descended on...READ MORE

Filed under caritas, caritas nepal, caritas network, catholic relief services, crs, crs rice bowl, earthquake, emergency relief, himalayas, kathmandu

Signs of the Cross in Romania:  Christianity Thrives in Post-communist Country

05/13/2015 Comments (17)
Wikicommons

President Klaus Iohannis of Romania

– Wikicommons

BUCHAREST, Romania — In some European countries, public expressions of Christianity still dignify daily life.

Standing near an Orthodox church in downtown Bucharest, people, old and young, make the sign of the cross as they pass this sacred site.

Even people tumbling from a public bus manage to cross themselves, recognizing God in the church.

In important ways, Christianity is thriving in post-Communist Romania.

Leaders of the Roman Catholic and Greek Catholic Churches (representing about 8% of the population according to the 2011 census) say participation has exploded when measured by baptisms, weddings, Sunday attendance, and vocations.

Church properties once shuttered have been...READ MORE

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Life-Changing Summer Reading Program

05/13/2015 Comments (1)

The official start of summer is just a month away — are you ready?

I teach a course called “Foundations of Prayer and Union with God” for the Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation. In this course I have had the great blessing of watching hundreds of God's good people grow more deeply in their prayer and union with God. During the course a number of the students asked if I could provide a list of spiritual reading that might help them continue in their progress. The graphic and list you see below is what I prepared for them.

I have given an order of priority to the list in terms of what might be most meaningful at each stage of the three-fold path of spiritual growth (purgative,...READ MORE

Filed under books, catholic books, spiritual reading, summer reading

Cardinal Dolan's seven-point plan to stop Christian persecution

05/12/2015 Comments (36)

Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York marked  the desperate plight of Christians in Iraq and Syria with an urgent plea for Americans to take action before it's too late.

“When it comes to the persecution of Christians, we are talking about an… international emergency,” Cardinal Dolan said, expressing both frustration and hope as he  called for lay Catholics to demand action from their government, provide humanitarian aid and pray, during an address at  conference on "The Islamic State's Religious Cleansing and the Urgency of a Strategic Response." Listen to the conference here.

Defending persecuted Christians  “is not some chic hobby. We are talking about life and death, we are talking about...READ MORE

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Fatima and the Rosary: Solution for Peace

05/12/2015 Comments (9)

Exactly 98 years ago, the simple solution to cure the world’s and our country’s freefall into turmoil was given to us. But how many have paid attention to the prescription or the instructions?

We have yet another chance to start this week. We have to pick up what St. Padre Pio called “the weapon.” Hint: It’s what Our Lady of Fatima, whose feast we celebrate on May 13, told us over and over to use for peace when she appeared in 1917.

This week, the Franciscan Daughters of Mary are leading the way, asking and hoping that scores of people will join them in a Rosary novena.

As our country and the world are in great need of peace, “the novena was inspired by Our Lady of Fatima, who told the...READ MORE

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No, Catholic U is NOT under investigation for offending Muslim students…

Another day, another faux crisis.

05/12/2015 Comments (16)

This is not happening.

…regardless what you may have read recently on Breitbart News, among many, many other right-wing sources.

[Update: See the letter I received from Catholic University below confirming my take on this story.]

“Catholic University investigated for offending Muslims by having too many crosses,” reads the May 11, 2015 headline at Breitbart.

Judging from many comments at Breitbart and on social media, the popular impression many people seem to be taking away from the story is this: Pushy Muslim students at Catholic University in Washington, DC are professing themselves offended by the sight of Christian crosses. They’re demanding that crosses be taken down and Muslim-friendly prayer spaces...READ MORE

Filed under islam, sharia, social media

Five Key Provisions in New Pain-Capable Abortion Ban: NRLC

05/12/2015 Comment
Shutterstock/Valentina Razumova

– Shutterstock/Valentina Razumova

The new and improved pain-capable abortion ban is set to get its first vote in the House of Representatives on May 13: the second anniversary of notorious abortionist Kermit Gosnell’s murder conviction, and the feast of Our Lady of Fatima. (In case you missed it: House GOP Leaders Announce Pain-Capable Bill Set for Gosnell Anniversary)

The text of the bill has been published, and National Right to Life Committee was kind enough to share a summary of the bill’s new improved features.

From NRLC’s summary of the new late term abortion ban:
 
The federal Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 36) would ban abortion nationwide after 20 weeks fetal age (equivalent to 22 weeks of...READ MORE

Filed under #theyfeelpain, abortion, civil action, incest, kermit gosnell, late-term abortion, may 13, national right to life committee, nrlc, our lady of fatima

Teresa of Avila on Having a Holy Community

05/12/2015 Comments (1)

"Make your community holy and God will help."

The purpose of the newest book in the Navigating the Interior Life book series, 30 Days with Teresa of Avila, is to reveal the unique personality, wisdom, and insight that often emerges out of the letters of the saints. These letters are a window into Saint Teresa’s genuine humanity, witness, and pragmatic advice for pursuing an intimate friendship with God.

I’ll be sharing some of the letters here, in the hope that you’ll be inspired to spend time prayerfully reflecting on them.

Today's excerpt is from Day 6 in the book.

XLVIII
Convent of the Incarnation, Avila1
To Father Ordoñez, S.J., Medina Del Campo Concerning the foundation at Medina...READ MORE

Filed under navigating the interior life, prayer, saint teresa of avila, saints, st. teresa of avila, teresa of avila

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