Pope Francis’ June Prayer Intentions

Andrea JoinesPope Francis

Pope Francis calls for an end to the arms trade in his June prayer intentions. Full text follows the video below. “It is an absurd contradiction to speak of peace, to negotiate peace, and at the same time, promote or permit the arms trade. Is this war or that war really a war to solve problems or is it a … Read More

How the Church Determines a True Marian Apparition

Richard SontagMarian Shrines of Europe, Pope Francis

fatima

The Vatican’s “Norms regarding the manner of proceedings in the discernment of presumed apparitions or revelations” were approved by Pope Paul VI in 1978. An official English translation was released in 2011. Like with Fatima, responsibility for determining an apparition’s veracity lies with the local bishop, according to the norms established by the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the … Read More

St. Joseph the Worker – May 1

Richard SontagChurch News

St. Joseph - the worker

Upon hearing Mary’s news about her pregnancy, Joseph knew she could have been accused of adultery and would be stoned to death, so he decided to send her away quietly. However, when an angel appeared to Joseph in a dream and told him, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what … Read More

March 19th, We Celebrate St. Joseph

Richard SontagSpiritual Reflections

St. Joseph

March 19th is the Feast of St. Joseph, the spouse of Mary and foster father of Jesus. This falls on the calendar just seven days before the Feast of the Annunciation on March 25, which commemorates the angel Gabriel’s visit to Mary announcing that she is to give birth to the Messiah.  St. Joseph was born in Bethlehem and worked … Read More

Pope’s March Prayer Intention

Richard SontagPope Francis

Pope Francis Video Text: How many people are being persecuted because of their faith, forced to abandon their homes, their places of worship, their lands, their loved ones! I ask you: how many of you pray for persecuted Christians? Do it with me, that they may be supported by the prayers and material help of all the Churches and communities.

Chair of Saint Peter

Richard SontagUncategorized

The feast of the Chair of Saint Peter is on February 22nd. On this feast, do we really celebrate a piece of furniture? In short, no. This feast actually commemorates the office of the bishop of Rome and the fact that Jesus Christ chose Peter to “sit” in his place as the visible head of the Church on earth. As … Read More

Restoring Church of the Nativity is like ‘touching heaven’

Richard SontagHoly Land

Nativity

The Italian firm restoring one of Christianity’s holiest sites — the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem — says it’s more than half-way finished with the 14 million dollar project, which has already uncovered a Crusades-era mosaic angel hidden under plaster. Piacenti SpA, a family-run conservation firm from the Tuscan town of Prato, won the contract to restore the biblical … Read More

St. Mary Magdalene’s Feast Day

Richard SontagChurch News, New Evangelization, Pope Francis, Spiritual Reflections

Feast Day

(uCatholic) At the personal request Pope Francis, the annual July 22 commemoration of St. Mary Magdalene on the Catholic liturgical calendar has been elevated to a Feast Day, the same ranking as the individual commemoration of the Apostles. The decree, dated June 3 and published in Latin, was signed by Archbishop Roche and Cardinal Robert Sarah, secretary and president, respectively, … Read More

Why we need the Holy Spirit

Richard SontagSpiritual Reflections, Uncategorized

(Aleteia) What is the most unlikely gift you have received? I have a friend who received a set of salt and pepper shakers in the shape of a maid and a butler. When you used them, they played the classic Elvis Presley song, “Love Me Tender.” I’m thinking of uncalled-for gifts because on Sunday we at least acknowledged, if not … Read More

10 Powerful Weapons

Richard SontagSpiritual Reflections

( Aleteia )We Christians face a spiritual battle each day. The Word of God teaches us that our life on earth is a constant struggle against the Evil One, and it reminds us that we have decided to follow Christ and to be always ready to face the Devil’s blows. To make this Lent a time of authentic conversion, with … Read More

Real Jewel in Pope’s Exhortation Comes on Married Love

Richard SontagChurch News, Pope Francis, US News

(Crux) Papal pundits are already entertaining themselves endlessly with the pope’s new letter on marriage and family, Amoris Laetitia, parsing each paragraph that touches on vexed questions and struggling to determine what, if anything, has changed as a result. The danger of course, is that bloggers will hungrily scour the document looking for declarations to support their favorite causes, and … Read More

Pope Francis Easter Message

Richard SontagChurch News, Pope Francis, Spiritual Reflections

Dear Brothers and Sisters, a Happy and Holy Easter! The Church throughout the world echoes the angel’s message to the women: “Do not be afraid! I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised… Come, see the place where he lay” ( Mt 28:5-6). This is the culmination of … Read More

Much of new Pew Research Center study fails to distinguish between vibrant, orthodox churches and fading, mainline denominations

WebmasterChurch News, US News

(CWR) Are We Really Losing Our Religion?  Much of the analysis of a new Pew Research Center study fails to distinguish between vibrant, orthodox churches and fading, mainline denominations. The just released study “America’s Changing Religious Landscape” (May 12, 2015) from Pew Research Center indicates that trends shaping and marking the religious landscape for the past four decades have not … Read More

Faith of Iraqi Christians unbreakable, despite persecution

WebmasterChurch News, World News

(CNA/EWTN News).- Iraqi Christians’ faith is not diminished, even as they face exile from their homes and profound suffering, an official with a Catholic pastoral charity has said after visiting Kurdistan, where many have taken refuge. “The faith is the reason for their lives. And despite the persecution, children wear rosaries around their necks and the people do not hide … Read More