Monday, March 28, 2011

Prayer Assignment

Click the link below to access the Powerpoint notes on Prayer from Chapters 31, 32, and 33.  Read the chapters in the textbook and PowerPoint notes in preparation for a quiz on Monday 4/4 or Tuesday 4/5.

Link: PowerPoint notes on Prayer

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Archbishop Timothy Dolan: 60 Minutes Interviews

On Sunday, March 20th, Archbishop of New York Timothy Dolan was the focus of a 60 Minutes Interview.  The piece was well done and Archbishop Dolan was as always very engaging.  Both are links to an article summarizing the Interview and the actually full-length segment.
Interview Summary

Full Length Segment

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Put St. Patrick Back In St. Patrick's Day!

Thursday, March 17th, is Saint Patrick’s Day; one of two Catholic Saints whose feast day appear on all secular calendars (St. Valentine is the other).  In Ireland, celebrations of St. Patrick’s life date back over a thousand years.  The Church officially recognized March 17th as St. Patrick’s feast day in the early 1600s.

The St. Patrick's Day custom came to America in 1737, with the city of Boston hosting the first public celebration.  However, New York City claims that Boston’s celebration did not count because it lacked a parade; New York hosted the first St. Patrick’s Day Parade in 1762 (have those two cities ever liked each other).  

Over time, St. Patrick’s Day has become less about the man and more about a celebration of Irish culture with people wearing green, displaying shamrocks, and eating cornbeef.

This St. Patrick’s Day let’s stop for a minute and remember what we are celebrating on March 17th – a man, a priest, a missionary – St. Patrick.

Here is a link to an article about why we should Put St. Patrick Back In St. Patrick's Day!

For Mr. Foley’s class, there is a short reflection at the end; it is due Wednesday, March 23rd (FYI: the Vatican Council II assignment is a couple blogposts down).

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Confession - Examination of Conscience

As Catholics, we are called to go to confession at least once per year.  The Lenten season, as a time of repentance, is a perfect time to pursue this sacrament. 

On Tuesday, March 15, we will go to confession as a class.

Catholics for centuries have found it profitable to examine their consciences in light of the Ten Commandments.  Click below for an Examination of Conscience that is based on the Ten Commandments and directed at teenagers.

Quote for Reflection
“Confession heals, confession justifies, confession grants pardon of sin, all hope consists in confession; in confession there is a chance for mercy.”
- St. Isidore of Seville
Doctor of the Church
(560 – 636)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Archbishop Timothy Dolan on Lent

This short (1 min.) video was recorded for and it features Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York (President of the USCCB) giving a nice description of what the Lenten Season means for Catholics.

You’re watching You’ve Got Archbishop Timothy Dolan.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Vatican Council II Article

Below is an article that appeared on the Catholic News Service website ( on October 12, 2005.  The article was written in anticipation of the 40th anniversary of Vatican Council II (which was December 8, 2005).  The article provides a really nice overview of the council and it’s affect on Catholic life. 

Also linked below are questions to be answered.

Vatican Council II Article

Vatican Council II Questions

Quotes from Pope Pius XI's Encyclicals on Totalitarianism

Mit brennender Sorge (With Burning Concern) - 1937-

He writes about "God-given rights" and invokes a "human nature" that went beyond national boundaries

“None but superficial minds could stumble into concepts of a national God, of a national religion; or attempt to lock within the frontiers of a single people, within the narrow limits of a single race, God, the Creator of the universe”

Full text -- Mit brennender Sorge

Divini Redemptoris  (On Atheistic Communism) - 1937

“Communism, moreover, strips man of his liberty, robs human personality of all its dignity, and removes all the moral restraints that check the eruptions of blind impulse. There is no recognition of any right of the individual in his relations to the collectivity; no natural right is accorded to human personality, which is a mere cog-wheel in the Communist system.”

Full text -- Divini Redemptoris

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Fasting - Gospel of Matthew Chapter 6

Ash Wednesday is upon us - - as we undertake our fast today lets us remember the words of Jesus in regards to fasting.  The following passage is from the Gosple of Matthew Chapter 6, it is towards the end of the Sermon on the Mount.

"When you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites. They neglect their appearance, so that they may appear to others to be fasting. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you may not appear to be fasting, except to your Father who is hidden. And your Father who sees what is hidden will repay you."

For a summary of the who, when, and how of fasting see the blog post from March 3rd entitled "Why Do I Have to Fast?"

Mardi Gras is Catholic?

Today March 8, 2011, is the traditional Mardi Gras celebration.

Most people think of Mardi Gras as a big party in New Orleans, but it actually has roots in the liturgical seasons of Catholicism.

Mardi Gras (French for "Fat Tuesday") is the last day before the beginning of Lent, a period of fasting and repentance leading up to Easter. Traditionally, it was the day for eating up the last of the rich foods that remained in the house such as eggs, meat, oils and butter which were strictly prohibited during the 40 days of Lent and for having a big party before a long period of discipline and repentance.

Monday, March 7, 2011

A Really Good Homily for Pre-Lenten Reflection

On Sunday, March 6, 2011, Archbishop Jose H. Gomez, the new Archbishop of Los Angeles (the US's largest diocese) gave his first homily as Archbishop.  There are a number of things he mentions that are worth reflecting on - especially as we move into Lent.

At the end of the homily, he entrusts his new ministry to Our Lady of Guadalupe, who will learn about later this trimester.

Archbishop Gomez's Homily

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Why Do I Have to Fast During Lent?

Lent is less than a week away and it is time to start preparing ourselves for the Lenten traditions:
-          Meatless Fridays
-          Fasting on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday
-          Giving up something

Every Lent I get asked the customary questions:
-          Why do I have to fast during Lent?
-          Why does Jesus care if I eat meat on Friday?  
-          Who even came up with the idea of fasting?

Let’s turn to some people smarter than us for the answers.

History of Fasting
“Fasting originated as a way of saving money on food, so that Christians could give it to the poor. It had a practical end: no meat for you meant more money for those who couldn't afford meat. Giving things up also reminds you that you don't always have to give into your appetites. It reminds you of your ability to exert self-control. And it reminds you of the poor, who go without every day.”
Father James Martin, S.J.
Catholic Author

Why We Fast
“Fasting is a powerful way to stand in solidarity with those who suffer … and to imitate the suffering of Jesus Christ. Fasting also provides an opportunity to seriously examine our own hearts and seek conversion.”
Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap.
Archbishop of Denver
Who, When, and How do We Fast
Ash Wednesday (3/9) and Good Friday (4/22) are days of fasting and abstinence for Catholics. According to Church law, Catholics older than the age of 14 are supposed to abstain from meat. In addition, those between the ages of 18 and 59, not including pregnant or nursing mothers, should eat only one full meal. Smaller amounts of food—not as much as a full meal—may be eaten in the morning and either at lunchtime or dinner, depending on when you eat your full meal.
Summary of the Catechism of the Catholic Church

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Issues from Class Play Out in Today's American Society

In response to the ongoing labor issues in Wisconsin, Archbishop Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee affirms the value of worker unions but calls all to the common good. 

The Archbishop is reaffirming exactly what we are discussing currently in Chapter 7. Check out the short article below. Article

"Do Whatever He Tells You"

Below is the transcript of a homily Bishop Vasa of Santa Rosa - California gave at a Mass for Medical professionals on February 11, 2011.

He uses Mary's statement at the Wedding Feast of Cana of "Do Whatever He Tells You" as the focal point.

Since this statement was so important to Blessed Chaminade, I thought you guys might find the homily interesting.

Bishop Vasa's Homily