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Scots Catholic

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Pope Francis invites us to heed the call of Our Lady of Fatima

Posted on May 13, 2016 at 7:49 AM Comments comments (0)

During Wednesday’s General Audience Pope Francis reminded the gathered that Friday 13 May is the memorial of Our Lady of Fatima, stressing the importance of paying heed to Mary’s words not to offend God any more than we already have and to focus our hearts and minds on abandoning ourselves to God’s love and mercy.


The pope said: “In this apparition, Mary invites us once again to prayer, penitence and conversion. She asks us to offend God no more….She warns all humanity of the need to abandon itself to God, the wellspring of love and mercy. Following the example of St. John Paul II, a great devotee of Our Lady of Fatima, let us listen carefully to the Mother of God, and implore peace for the world.”

This is our Faith. Share it with someone today and join in the First Saturday Devotion

Posted on April 11, 2016 at 9:11 AM Comments comments (0)

This, brothers and sisters, is our faith. 


These images from Fatima show the world what it means to be Catholic.  Why not share them with others and show them the deep sense of unity and love that exists in the Church; a Church that is open to all.


And as the month of Mary approaches, why not consider joining in the First Saturday Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary?  You can find out more by clicking here.



Finding hope in Peter's weakness

Posted on March 22, 2016 at 1:09 PM Comments comments (0)

From today’s Gospel:

‘Simon Peter said, ‘Lord, where are you going?’ Jesus replied, ‘Where I am going you cannot follow me now; you will follow me later.’ Peter said to him, ‘Why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.’ ‘Lay down your life for me?’ answered Jesus. ‘I tell you most solemnly, before the cock crows you will have disowned me three times.’’



This small passage from today’s Gospel follows on nicely from our reflection on yesterday’s Gospel when we compared the simple love Mary had for Jesus in needing to be close to him with Martha’s need to be on the go.  In being so preoccupied Martha missed out on precious quality time with Jesus, a mistake Mary was not prepared to make.


And today we have Peter, one of Jesus’ closest disciples, claiming that he would lay down his life for Jesus.  That, you would think, is a step up from the love shown by Mary.  And it is.  And Peter would, of course, eventually become a martyr for Christ in Rome.  But for now Jesus has an unfortunate surprise for Peter.  He tells him that he is going to deny him.  Imagine your best friend, or even your spouse, telling you that they know you will betray them in some way.  You, like Peter, would be very disappointed to hear such news!  But then don’t we betray people every day, denying their true value as fellow human beings and children of God?  Don’t we gossip, complain and criticise other people behind their back on a regular basis?  These are human weaknesses and no human is exempt from them.  Even St Peter fell into this trap!  So, in that sense, we are in good company.


But, like St Peter, we are called to greater things.  We are called to overcome our human weakness and realise the hurt caused by some of our actions.  How can we forget the look on Peter’s face in Mel Gibson’s The Passion of The Christ when he heard the cock crow?  How can we forget the way he then rushed to the feet of Mary and sobbed uncontrollably as he clung to her garment, realising how foolish and weak he had been?

   
We are all capable of moments of weakness in our lives, even to the point of mistreating or even denying those most precious to us.  The next time you fall into this trap look for the comforting arms of your mother Mary, just as Peter did, and seek reconciliation with Jesus in the Sacrament of Confession.  This is how we can overcome our weakness and become saints.  If Peter can do it, so can we.

Sister Lucia of Fatima spells out the reality of the battle over marriage and family life

Posted on September 7, 2015 at 11:45 AM Comments comments (0)
Sister Lucia dos Santos
 
As we approach the second and final part of the Synod on Marriage and Family Life it is important for us to remember these words of Sister Lucia of Fatima, one of three children who were visited by Our Blessed Mother Mary during the twentieth century.
 
 
Lucia describes how the final battle between the Lord and Satan will be about marriage and the family, but that anyone who stands for the sanctity of marriage and the family should not fear as "Our Lady has already crushed its head".
 
 
It should be no surprise to us to hear that there is an ongoing battle with the father of lies over marriage and family life.  Just consider contraception, abortion and the redefinition of marriage and you can see precisely where the devil is attacking God's divine plan for mankind. 
 
 
We are, in all respects, in the battlefield for the very last battle between the devil and the Lord.  But which side are we on?  Are we with the world; a world that is increasingly subject to the contol of the devil with all his lies and attacks on our faith?  Or are we with Christ and his Church, standing firm to the Truth and God's divine plan with which comes the promise eternal salvation?
 

Why does the Catholic Church not ordain women as priests? Here's seven good reasons why not...

Posted on July 3, 2015 at 11:07 AM Comments comments (0)
Catholic Answers' director of apologetics Tim Staples considers the question of women priests in the Catholic Church and reveals seven reasons why this is not possible.
 
The seven reasons are:
 
1. The Church has definitively declared it
 
2. The Church's constant Tradition for 2,000 years cannot err
 
3. The attitude of Christ
 
4. The practice of the Apostles
 
5. The permanent value of the attitude of Jesus Christ and the Apostles
 
6. The ministerial priesthood in the light of the mystery of Christ
 
7. The ministerial priesthood as illustrated by the mystery of the Church
 
 
Click this link to read the full article: http://www.catholic.com/blog/tim-staples/call-no-woman-father
 

Join in the First Saturday Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and Receive the Graces Necessary for Salvation

Posted on June 5, 2015 at 7:32 AM Comments comments (0)
 
The First Saturday Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary is an incredibly rich, and ultimately rewarding, devotion to Our Blessed Mother Mary. 
 
Please try to participate in this most incredible act of devotion and allow Jesus to pour his abundant graces upon you.
 

Your Father wants one thing for you this Christmas...

Posted on December 24, 2014 at 5:04 AM Comments comments (0)
 
Midnight Mass Gospel (Luke 2:1-14):
 
'Caesar Augustus issued a decree for a census of the whole world to be taken. This census – the first – took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria, and everyone went to his own town to be registered. So Joseph set out from the town of Nazareth in Galilee and travelled up to Judaea, to the town of David called Bethlehem, since he was of David’s House and line, in order to be registered together with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. While they were there the time came for her to have her child, and she gave birth to a son, her first born. She wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger because there was no room for them at the inn.
In the countryside close by there were shepherds who lived in the fields and took it in turns to watch their flocks during the night. The angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone round them. They were terrified, but the angel said, ‘Do not be afraid. Listen, I bring you news of great joy, a joy to be shared by the whole people. Today in the town of David a saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. And here is a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.’ And suddenly with the angel there was a great throng of the heavenly host, praising God and singing:
‘Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and peace to men who enjoy his favour.’'
 
 
As humans we often find it difficult to accept a very simple message.  We naturally want to dig deeper to not only figure out the answer but also figure out why the answer is what it is!  We have a longing for knowledge and that is not a bad thing.  But sometimes just discovering the simple answer is all we need. 
 
At Christmas we celebrate the birth of Christ.  It is God incarnate, God made man.  It is the time when God became man to save the world.  An event that would change the world forever.  So, to suggest we simplify the meaning of such a significant event seems a bit harsh. 
 
But simplify it we will!  Because Christmas can be wrapped up in one word that encapsulates everything that this earth shattering event means for us.  That word?  Joy. 
 
It is joy that God wanted to bring to the world when He came to earth as a tiny baby, born of Mary.  What is the one thing every parent wants for their child?  It is happiness.  They want their child to experience joy throughout their whole life.  And this parental wish can be stretched right back through time and through all parents to the Father of Creation. 
 
God wants His children to be happy!  He wants us to be full of joy!  This is why He came to us.  He came to save us from sin so that we could live a life of perfect joy and ultimately unite with Him in Heaven at the end of time. 
 
This Christmas, think simply about what this event truly means for us.  Think joyful thoughts, say joyful words, do joyful things.  Your Father wants you to be happy. 
 
 

Mary's act of faith is a real example of obedience and love (Dwelling on the Word of God, Sunday 21st December 2014)

Posted on December 19, 2014 at 7:27 AM Comments comments (0)
 
This Sunday's Gospel Acclamation:
 
'I am the handmaid of the Lord:
let what you have said be done to me.'
 
Mary's yes, or fiat as it is commonly referred to, is the ultimate act of faith in God's divine plan.  It is a simple and humble acceptance of the Father's will over and above Mary's own dreams and aspirations. 
 
Mary's fiat is the complete sacrifice of the self in favour of the interests of another.  It is, in that sense, very much like marriage.  Marriage, as a Sacrament, is the complete giving of oneself to another in love.  Love, in this sense, is a sacrifice and we should always guard against reducing it to a mere emotion as is often the case in today's world.  Love is wanting the very best for your spouse and this, of course, should be reciprocal, so that at all times each spouse is striving for the very best for the other and each lives in the security of an endless cycle of sacrifical love.  
 
Mary, in saying yes to God, not only shows us how to be completely obedient to whatever God wants for us.  Mary, in saying yes, also shows us how to love.  
 
 

Hail Mary, Conceived Without Sin

Posted on December 9, 2014 at 7:02 AM Comments comments (0)
 
Catholic Answers Director of Apologetics and Evangelisation Tim Staples takes a fascinating look at the beautiful teaching that Mary was conceived without sin and considers the various links between the Old and New Testament with respect to our Blessed Mother.
 
 
 

Pope expresses deep concern at growing relativism in marriage and the ‘throw-away’ culture

Posted on October 27, 2014 at 9:41 AM Comments comments (0)
 
Pope Francis said the institution of Christian marriage has never been attacked so much as nowadays where a temporary or throw-away culture has become widespread. He said marriage should not be seen just a social rite and urged priests to stay close to couples and especially children experiencing the trauma of a family break-up. The Pope was replying to questions put to him on a range of topics during an audience with more than 7000 pilgrims belonging to the Schoenstatt movement, an international Marian and apostolic organization that is celebrating the 100th anniversary of its founding in Germany.  The movement now embraces members, both lay and clerics, from dozens of nations around the world.
 
Mistaken views about marriage and its true meaning, our temporary or throw-away culture, the need to be courageous and daring, Mary’s missionary role, the disunity of the Devil and why the concept of solidarity is under attack.  These were just some of the wide-ranging issues which Pope Francis spoke about in his off-the-cuff remarks during the question and answer session with the Schoenstatt pilgrims held in the Vatican’s Paul VI Audience Hall on Saturday.
 
Asked about marriage and what advice he can offer to those who don’t feel welcome in the Church, Pope Francis stressed the need for priests to stay close to each one of their flock without becoming scandalized over what takes place within the family.   He said a bishop during the recent Synod on the family asked whether priests are aware of what children feel and the psychological damage caused when their parents separate.  The Pope noted how sometimes in these cases the parent who is separating ends up living at home only part-time with the children which he described as a “new and totally destructive” form of co-habitation.
  
He said the Christian family and marriage have never been so attacked as they are nowadays because of growing relativism over the concept of the sacrament of marriage.  When it comes to preparing for marriage, Pope Francis said all too often there is a misunderstanding over the difference between the sacrament of marriage and the social rite. Marriage is for ever, he said, but in our present society there is a temporary or throw-away culture that has become widespread. 
 
Turning to the missionary role of Mary, the Pope reminded people that nobody can search for faith without the help of Mary, the Mother of God, saying a Church without Mary is like an orphanage. When questioned as to how he maintains a sense of joy and hope despite the many problems and wars in our world, Pope Francis replied that he uses prayer, trust, courage and daring. To dare is a grace, he said, and a prayer without courage or daring is a prayer that doesn’t work.   
Asked about reform of the Church, the Pope said people describe him as a revolutionary but went on to point out that the Church has always been that way and is constantly reforming itself.  He stressed that the first revolution or way of renewing the Church is through inner holiness and that counts far more than more external ways such as reforming the Curia and the Vatican bank. Pope Francis also spoke about the importance of having a freedom of spirit and warned against closing ourselves up in a mass of rules and regulations, thus becoming a caricature of the doctors of law.
  
The theme of our throw-away society was also touched on again by the Pope in another reply when he said our present-day culture is one that destroys the human bonds that bind us together. And in this context, he continued, one word that is at risk of dying in our society is 'solidarity' and this is also a symptom of our inability to forge alliances. Pope Francis also warned about the Devil, stressing that he exists and that his first weapon is disunity.
 
(Article from news.va)