From an Old Slavonic Life of Constantine

Second Reading From an Old Slavonic Life of Constantine Build up your church and gather all into unity Constantine, already burdened by many hardships, became ill. At one point during his extended illness, he experienced a vision of God and began to sing this verse: “My spirit rejoiced and my heart exulted because they told me we shall go into the house of the Lord.” Afterwards he remained dressed in the vestments that were to be venerated later, and rejoiced for an entire day, saying: “From now on, I am not the servant of the emperor or of any man … Continue reading From an Old Slavonic Life of Constantine

From a letter by Saint Marie Bernadette Soubirous, virgin

From a letter by Saint Marie Bernadette Soubirous, virgin The lady spoke to me I had gone down one day with two other girls to the bank of the river Gave when suddenly I heard a kind of rustling sound. I turned my head towards the field by the side of the river but the trees seemed quite still and the noise was evidently not from them. Then I looked up and caught sight of the cave where I saw a lady wearing a lovely white dress with a bright belt. On top of each of her feet was a … Continue reading From a letter by Saint Marie Bernadette Soubirous, virgin

Food for the soul

Mk 5, 21-43 When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a large crowd gathered around him, and he stayed close to the sea. One of the synagogue officials, named Jairus, came forward. Seeing him he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, saying, “My daughter is at the point of death. Please, come lay your hands on her that she may get well and live.” He went off with him and a large crowd followed him. There was a woman afflicted with hemorrhages for twelve years. She had suffered greatly at the hands … Continue reading Food for the soul

Why do we believe in the resurrection of the dead?

We believe in the resurrection of the dead because Christ rose from the dead, lives forever, and causes us to share in this eternal life. (988-991) When someone dies, his body is buried or cremated. Nevertheless, we believe that there is a life after death for that person. In his Resurrection, Jesus showed that he is Lord over death; his word is trustworthy: “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live” (Jn 11,25b). Continue reading Why do we believe in the resurrection of the dead?

But why did Jesus work miracles?

The miracles that Jesus worked were signs that the kingdom of God was beginning. They expressed his love for mankind and reaffirmed his mission. (547-550) Jesus’ miracles were not self-aggrandizing displays of magic. He was filled with the power of God’s healing love. Through his miracles he showed that he is the Messiah and that the kingdom of God begins in him. Thus it became possible to experience the dawn of the new world: he freed people from hunger (Jn 6,5-15), injustice (Lk 19,8), sickness, and death (Mt 11,5). By driving out demons, he began his victorious advance against the … Continue reading But why did Jesus work miracles?

Natural law

Is there a natural law that everyone can know? If people are to do good and avoid evil, certainty about what is good or evil must be inscribed within them. In fact there is such a moral law that is, so to speak, “natural” to men and can be known in principle by every person by reason. (1949-1960, 1975, 1978-1979) The natural moral law is valid for everyone. It tells men what fundamental rights and duties they have and thus forms the real foundation for life together in the family, in society, and in the State. Because our natural knowledge … Continue reading Natural law

On Death

Second Reading From the Second Vatican Council’s pastoral constitution “Gaudium et spes” on the Church in the modern world The mystery of death In the face of death the enigma of human existence reaches its climax. Man is not only the victim of pain and the progressive deterioration of his body; he is also, and more deeply, tormented by the fear of final extinction. But the instinctive judgement of his heart is right when he shrinks from, and rejects, the idea of a total collapse and definitive end of his own person. He carries within him the seed of eternity, … Continue reading On Death

Human Rights

How can human rights and the rights of peoples and nations be promoted? Every day we see all sorts of violence: genocide, war and exile, hunger and exploitation. Children are recruited as soldiers and forced to kill. New forms of slavery have developed. Human trafficking, prostitution, and drugs have become an illegal billion-dollar business in which political forces and even governments are also involved. Christians must not insist on human rights only when it is a question of protecting their own; they must realize that they also have the task of defending and strengthening the fundamental rights of all people. … Continue reading Human Rights

Scared of Confession

This gospel reminds me of the fear and embarrassment I felt for all the things I did for several years. I remember the first time I went to confession without leaving anything unsaid, and the anguish I felt thinking of the penance I would receive. But to my surprise, the priest replied: “God has been looking forward to this moment with you, to hug you and tell you how much He loves you. Don’t do it again.” What a lesson to understand, to stop being afraid of the truth since truth frees us and God’s mercy is endless! Patricia Alvarado … Continue reading Scared of Confession

By what is authority bound?

All authority is bound by the Natural Law, which expresses the fundamental ethical values that are immediately evident to human reason. If any authority enacts laws and regulations that contradict these values, it creates an unjust “law”—in other words, a law that obliges no one. On account of the validity of the natural law, Nazi war criminals, for example, could not argue that they had merely acted according to the law and had obeyed the commands of a legitimate authority. Today these insights have been enshrined in international law. Continue reading By what is authority bound?