Friday, July 30, 2010

St. John the Baptist

Archaeologists investigating the Sv. Ivan (St. John) island off Sozopol have found an exquisite reliquary – a relic urn – built in the altar of an ancient church bearing the name of St. John the Baptist

The reliquary has the shape of a sarcophagus and is dated end of 4th - beginning of 5th c. AD. It was discovered by the team of Prof. Kazimir Popkonstantinov.

The church's name, as well as the fact that it had a special emperor's statute issued, has hinted to archeologists that it might actually contain St. John's relics. The urn is expected to be opened Sunday.

(CLICK HERE to read the rest of the article)

Litany Prayer of St. John the Baptist

Lord, have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.

God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Ghost, Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, Pray for us.
Queen of Prophets, Pray for us.
Queen of Martyrs, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, precursor of Christ, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, glorious forerunner of the Sun of Justice, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, minister of Baptism to Jesus, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, burning and shining lamp of the world, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, angel of purity before thy birth, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, special friend and favorite of Christ, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, heavenly contemplative, whose element was prayer, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, intrepid preacher of truth, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, voice crying in the wilderness, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, miracle of mortification and penance, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, example of profound humility, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, glorious martyr of zeal for God's holy law, Pray for us.
St. John the Baptist, gloriously fulfilling thy mission, Pray for us.

Friday, July 16, 2010


It conquers fear; contains recklessness; checks imprudence. It is the difference between evangelizing and proselytizing, and that blithering on for 25 minutes to an unfortunately captive audience is not an example of the former. It's what stops us from letting our emotions and desires lead us into an ill-conceived, hasty action that could cause embarrassment, anger, irritation or resentment in others.  It's not just having conviction; it's having the guts to act on our convictions AND the wisdom to act on them rightly.

It's what Michael Voris talks about in today's episode of The Vortex.

This program is from

Friday, July 9, 2010

Meditation on the Crucifixion; Forgive them for they know not what they do

While meditating upon the last sorrowful mystery, some thoughts occured to me regarding the crucifixion and the true meaning of love. Have I stopped and fully realized and appreciated the love shown by Jesus to those around him during the crucifixion? Jesus was nailed to the cross by those whom he created, fashioned together from his hands. As they were nailing Him to the cross, causing Him unimaginable agony, Jesus looked at them in love. He looked at them in love and forgave them. He asked His Father to forgive them. It was more than simple forgiveness, it was love. Love for the unlovable. It was not the kind of forgiveness that we all find ourselves granting from time to time because someone is "due" forgiveness because they apologized and its what we "should" do. It was rather, pure love and forgiveness. They didn't ask Him for it, they didn't say they were sorry. Still, He forgave and asked for them to be forgiven. He cried "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." (Luke 23:34 NAB). Such love is held in that sentence, that we can barely begin to understand it. Forgive them, as they were murdering him? Such compassion, such mercy is almost incomprehensible to us humans. We get that we have to forgive people. Sometimes, we manage to do well, other times we manage to forgive, but begrudginly. In that passage, He not only forgave them, He loved them. He loved them right there in the midst of their horrific behavior. He recognized that they didn't understand what they were doing. They didn't understand that right in front of them was pure love personified, crying out to them, reaching for them even in the midst of His torture at their hands. They didn't hear it, they didn't see it, they didn't believe it, and He still kept giving it. Do we understand that love? The love for the unlovable? or do we get miffed when someone says something unkind, gets short with us, or pushes our buttons? Can we look out and show Christ's love? We must. If He did that, and we know He did, then how can I not respond with love and compassion when someone hurts my feelings or causes me pain. We must carry Jesus to the world despite our brokeness of being human, and we must carry Him by showing nothing but love. So the next time someone says or does something to me unjustly, I hope to be able to remember this and to try to unite it to Jesus' suffering and look out with love. I hope that Jesus will look at that person through me, for when they see me, I want them to see something of Jesus. Even in the midst of correction, when it must be given, I want the world to see Jesus. In everything I do, I want the world to see Jesus. I sure am going to pray to try to be better at loving those around me.

When the Fence Becomes a Razor Blade

I think we've all been in this position---pulled between two options, undecided as to the correct course of action.  We don't like to be wrong, but we also don't like to be unpopular.  The consequenses of defying our peers can be absolutely brutal; so we wait to decide, until the edge of our comfey little fence sharpens and we're forced to make a decision. I think one of the most famous fence-sitters of all time was Pilate, unwilling to condemn Jesus, but fearful to not appease the crowd.  As the crowd grew in its fervor against Christ, that fence became a razor blade.

He chose, alright.

I've read that Pilate was driven by a torturous cancer to an early  grave, utterly consumed knowing that he sent an innocent man--the Son of Man--to a wrongful death.  We don't know what would have happened if Pilate had declared Jesus an innocent man and set Him free; but his accusers were hotly determined to carry out their plans.  It's likely that the mob wouldn't have rested until it found someone to carry out its agenda.  I wonder how many churches to St. Pilate, Martyr, might be around had he the courage to choose the right thing over the threats of an angry mob.

Let's face it, the world is falling into a strange state of affairs.  Thanks to a bunch of modern-day fence-sitters, we've seen bills signed into law without first being discussed, or even read, spiraling us into a financial and social vaccuum; anyone with half a brain realizes that an executive order will not trump the rule of law, and abortions will be funded by taxpayer dollars.  I can't help but wonder if our legislators even realize that they chose the angry mob over right. 

If we each think about it, we've each probably felt the bite of that fence sharpening out of nowhere, and if we're honest with ourselves, we've sometimes chosen the angry mob for fear of the immediate consequences.  There's nothing easy about following Jesus.  Sure, at first we think it's all rainbows and pie, but it can't stay that way if it's going to be authentic.  Hard decisions lie before each of us in every area of our lives.  The cut from choosing right could be more painful than we think we can take, but in the end, we'll rise again with Christ, because there isn't an angry mob big enough that can stop our Glorious Lord.

Be Still

This is perhaps the most surprising interview upon which I've stumbled. C.C. DeVille is the lead guitarist for 80's glam rock phenomenon Poison.  (by surprising I mean the content, not the delivery--he's a nut, man.)

Dance, Dance Wherever You May Be

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