Monday, November 2, 2009


FINDING TRUTH WHEREVER IT MAY BE FOUND: “It is a shame that we tell our children that they can grow up to be president of the United States when in reality only one or two of us in every generation could possibly succeed and we do not tell them that they can be saints as if it were the most difficult thing in the world when in reality it is open to everyone.” Homily

QUOTE II: “. . .the one thing I cherish most: his letters. Even when they don’t give me as much of him as I long for, at least I know that at those moments he is writing only to me, and I am getting all his attention. When do we ever get all of someone’s attention anymore? A handwritten letter is a small but priceless gift: the envelope is sealed, the stamp applied, the letter dropped into the dark box. When it arrives, I curl up under my blanket with me tea to read it. It is this ritual that keeps us friends.” Courtney Rogmans in “The Sun”


This was sent to us through our Catholic Charities: "Dear Friends, The following was just sent from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. This is important for all of us. Please take action immediately. For more information, visit Thank you!

B. sent in this 10 minute video on Padre Pio:

Here's a minute long good one:


Anonymous said...


I heard your homily on Sunday about all of us being called to be saints right here, right now, and it has stuck with me all week. Your opening quote on today's blog was the subject of our dinner conversation that night. Excellent homily - thanks for posting a reminder of it here.

Anonymous said...

Awesome post.

Has anyone reading this viewed this Padre Pio movie in its entirety?

ck said...

I got hooked into watching he Padre Pio movie in its entirety. Very enjoyable! Sometimes religious movies have a great message but weak scripts and so-so actors, (the Terese movie in theaters a few years ago comes to mind - just my opinion) but this was first rate!

Atlas said...

i attended that Sunday mass and heard your homily about the saints. Unfortunately, I must disagree.
We tell our children they can be president because to them, the president runs their world. Saints, are not rulers but submitters. They submit their lives for what they believe in. This, apparently, makes them extremely Holy. But, they were still humans, equal to us and equal to the Pope. By what standard of Morality is this Holiness based on? Why is it moral for us to allow another to die for us? If I saw an arrow flying at a stranger on the street and I jumped in the way and took the arrow, is the man i saved deemed unholy and immoral for not giving his life for me but instead letting my life end. Would I as Holy as the Saints?
Also, if the pope is so much like Jesus in his holiness, then why does the pope not allow the sick the meek and the downtrodden into his luxurious Palace, why does he not sell all the golden jewelry he wears and give the money to the poor, why doesn't he give up the fine linen robe he wears to those who are naked? By Jesus' standards, the Pope is extremely unholy.

Fr. V said...

Greeting Atlas,

I don't understand how you do not agree. I think that it is still true that sainthood is open to all while the presidency is not.

I'm afraid that I would also have to disagree with you on the submissive thing. SOME saints certainly became saints that way - others by changing the world in bolder and more daring ways than presidents.

It is not simply a matter of dying that makes one a saint. Is the death an extreme act of love- does it work at brigning violence to an end or does the example bring about a greater sense of justice?

Next, nobody said that the pope is as holy as Jesus. That is a straw man argument. In fact, some popes have been distinctly un-holy. You will notice they are not all recognized as saints. Some are, some are not - they are the visible heads of the Church however in a system set up by Jesus who chose as His disciples fallable men - one of whom was a theif and betrayed Him, all of whom abandoned Him in His greatest time of need, and the leader that kept messing up in the most imbarrasing ways. What He did promise however is that the gates of hell would not prevail against His Church. (If you want to get into infallability make sure you know what you are talking about first.)

Finally - all the riches of Rome - First you make the assumption that the poor are never invited in for a meal. Then what of all the art - it could be sold - the money given to the poor - and then what the next day? The greatest collection of art and learning is dispearsed possibly to be out of accessability to all. And then we have poor again the next day too - "The poor need more than food - they also need beauty and art."

Why is it Okay for a government to have museums and building of distinction and libraries for the good of the people but it is bad for a Church? Is quality of life also not part of our mission?

Now - should the pope sell all of his fancy clothes and ride around on a bike? Maybe. But guess what single organizaton - over and above all other institutions AND NATIONS gives more to the advancement, education, and necessities of life of all than any other. That would be the Catholic Church.

Please keep these facts in mind next time you want to maligne the Church - if anyting is worth maligning it is worth doing honestly.

Atlas said...

ok, i admit, my comments were more emotional then factual, i apologize for that.
The question that I've always wanted to know is why no pope has ever done what Pope John Paul I wanted to do. He rejected being carried around, he wanted to use "I" instead of the royal "we", he also was the first pope to refuse the traditional papal coronation. Instead, he chose investiture. Pope John Paul 1 was truly a man following and doing what Jesus taught, to not show yourself as better than everyone else, but as their equal, as their brother. This is where the modern papacy has faltered. They do not practice what they preach. The Vatican Bank holds stock shares in contraceptive companies, in weapons manufacturers, and was once involved in a massive money laundering scandal the investigation for which was spear-headed by Pope John Paul I. He, in my opinion, is truly a saint.

Fr. V said...

Thanks for responding and without denying that there is some truth in your statements I add a note of caution in that it is faulty and sometimes dangerous to judge historical actions by modern moreys.

While agreeing with you that it was a good move to sluff off old practices by new - that does not mean that in their day they were not correct. They royal "we" was standard practice in its day for people in the pope's position and it would have seemed at least rude or self engradizing if just plain ignorant (hardly a step in the right direction for promoting the Gospel) in thier day. Perhaps it should have been changed more quickly in modern times but the Church can be so terribly slow in order not to jump on any faultering bandwagons.

The shift from coronation was also a good thing. But remember that a pope is also the governing head of a state - and at one time a much larger state. Once again, in order to be a legitimately recognized leader one had to follow the practices of the day. Maybe this wasn't the best way - especially by today's standards - but it was what was expected in its day.

Actually JP I began using the portable throne again after abandoning it - simply so more people could see him! THe reason we do not use it today is because modern technology makes such a thing as a pope mobile possible allowing the pope to make contact closer up than just a tiny little window in the side of a building.

Often the same argument is used for the "high pulpit" in many older churches. A priest may refuse to use it because it seems hierarchical. Thankfully microphones help a priest that no longer wishes to use it be heard - but I used to be so dissappointed going to a church where they were no longer used for the simple reason that if one sat more than a few pews back you could not see the homilist (which made the homily much less engaging.) So for the purpose of "being among the people" they actually reached less people.

I am glad we (eventually) change with times - but because it seems wrong or austentatious now (sp???) does not mean that there was not a good reason for it when it began.

As for bank struggles - I know nothing of their current holdings and you may be correct - or at least the appearance of scandal may bet there whether it actually is or not - in any case that does not nullify the teachings of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. It means that it is in constant need of purification.

That I would agree with.