26 November 2011

This Is What Coffee Bowl Browsing Looks Like!!!

This is what democracy looks like. . .in hell.

This is what Occupy Logic looks like.

This is what consumerism looks like. . .for a waffle toaster.

This is what Black Friday feels like. . .pepper spray.

This is what food riots in pagan Rome must've looked like.  Are we doomed?

This is what Amish terrorists look like. . .no, really.

This is what Catholic evangelism looks like.

This is what Native American wisdom looks like.

This is what Catholic competition looks like.

This is Culinary Ownage looks like.

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24 November 2011

Are you one of the nine. . .?

Luke 17. 11-19:  As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem, he traveled through Samaria and Galilee. As he was entering a village, ten persons with leprosy met him. They stood at a distance from him and raised their voices, saying, "Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!" And when he saw them, he said, "Go show yourselves to the priests." As they were going they were cleansed. And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan. Jesus said in reply, "Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?" Then he said to him, "Stand up and go; your faith has saved you."

One of the most common questions I am asked is:  "why doesn't God answer my prayers?"  My most common answer:  "He has answered your prayers.  You weren't grateful, so you could not hear Him."  

What makes listening possible?  Gratitude. 

Iron Clad Rule of Prayer:  you cannot receive that for which you are not grateful.  In other words, if you ain't thankful for what you are given, you ain't gettin' it. 

The process here is really very simple.  Nothing given is a gift until it is received with genuine gratitude.  You can be given money, food, a job, etc. but if you receive this money, food, a job, etc. as something owed to you or as payment or as a bribe, then it is not a gift.  You may say, "Thank you" to the giver, but the spiritual effect is nil.  You're just being polite--not a bad thing, of course, but also not a particularly grace-filled way of growing in holiness.

Think of it this way:  everything and everyone belongs to God.  If you are given (gifted) with money, food, a job, etc., then the proper response is, "Thank you, Lord!"  This is a moment of profound witness, a testimony to the abundant generosity of the Father in providing you with what you need. 

Jesus asks, "Where are the other nine?"  Well, they are sitting in their pastor's office, asking, "Why doesn't God answer my prayers?" 

Are you the one who says, "Thank you, Lord!"?  Or you are among the nine who struggle to understand why you haven't received the Lord's blessings with gratitude?

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Try it and let me know. . .

A couple of H.A. readers have asked about sending Amazon gift cards my way.  

I've tried over the years to link the cards to the Wish List. . .usually w/o much success.  

However, I think (emphasis on think) that Amazon has made linking their gift cards to a Wish List easier.  

Given my ineptitude with techie stuff and the electronics-distrupting entropy field that follows me all over. . .well, we can always pray, right?

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23 November 2011

Man is a beggar before God!

CCC 2559 "Prayer is the raising of one's mind and heart to God or the requesting of good things from God."2 But when we pray, do we speak from the height of our pride and will, or "out of the depths" of a humble and contrite heart?3 He who humbles himself will be exalted;4 humility is the foundation of prayer, Only when we humbly acknowledge that "we do not know how to pray as we ought,"5 are we ready to receive freely the gift of prayer. "Man is a beggar before God."6

If humility is the foundation of prayer, then gratitude is path to humility!

Think about it: we have a whole day dedicated to nurturing the foundation of Christian prayer: Thanksgiving Day.


2 St. John Damascene, Defide orth. 3,24:PG 94,1089C.
3 Ps 130:1.
4 Cf. Lk 18:9-14.
5 Rom 8:26.
6 St. Augustine, Sermo 56,6,9:PL 38,381.

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Occupy Black Friday Stampede: Clash of the Titans

The Occupier Whiners have vowed to "Occupy Black Friday" (whatever that means).

OK. . .

Here's a little of what awaits them at America's finest retail stores:

Remember that movie about the Zombies attacking the Mall?

Then there's that food riot scene in Soylent Green.

And the time-lapsed scene in every National Geographic special where the ants strip an animal carcass.

Finally, a classic. . .The Running of the Bulls.

The clash between rank consumerist greed and self-righteous hypocrisy will be EPIC!

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Coffee Bowl Browsing

Occupiers are planning on disrupting Black Friday shopping.  Can't wait to see the vids of the Occupiers getting stampeded by the bargain hunters.  

An idea whose time has come:  DeOccupyXMasList.

I was sympathetic with the UC-Davis students who were pepper-sprayed last week. . .and then I saw this video.  It's all theater.

B.O. is nominating unqualified lawyers to the bench:  ". . .[his] rejection rate is more than three and a half times as high than under each of the previous two presidencies. . ."

A modest proposal:  impose a moratorium on all homilies for one year.  A better proposal:  make excellent preaching a priority in seminaries and parishes.  Bishops could hire a few OP's to help!

Archdiocese wins tax battle with SanFran radical.  What the article doesn't mention is that tax assessor who pulled this stunt is a GLBTQXYZ advocate. . .and he's running for mayor. 

Would you do this?  I might. . .maybe.

HA!  I just did this. . .

The large mountain Jew!

Don't watch this if you are prone to crying at cute animal stories. . .I'm not. . .no, really, I'm not. Leave me alone!

Indeed. . .(a U.D. joke).

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22 November 2011

The missal launches. . .and strikes!

A very special Mille Grazie to my German Angel, S.N. for her kindness and generosity in sending to us here at the Angelicum a copy of the newly translated Roman Missal.   This missal will be used in the daily Masses celebrated for the English-speaking students.  Bee, our prayers are with you, my dear!

Also, many thanks to the kind soul who recently visited the Wish List and sent me a special package for Christmas.  I only hope we meet one day so that you too can enjoy your gift.  

Fr. Philip Neri, OP

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Ugly Churches, Uglier Music: There's a commission for that. . .

Great News from Rome!  The Congregation on Divine Worship is setting up a commission on church architecture and sacred music. 

No word yet on whether or not this commission will have police powers or the authority to dispatch albino Opus Dei Ninja Monks to "take care" of offending architects, diocesan liturgical officials, pastors, and bishops.  We can always hope, can't we?

A team has been set up, to put a stop to garage style churches, boldly shaped structures that risk denaturing modern places for Catholic worship. Its task is also to promote singing that really helps the celebration of mass. The “Liturgical art and sacred music commission” will be established by the Congregation for Divine Worship over the coming weeks. This will not be just any office, but a true and proper team, whose task will be to collaborate with the commissions in charge of evaluating construction projects for churches of various dioceses. The team will also be responsible for the further study of music and singing that accompany the celebration of mass.

I spent 13 years wandering the theological deserts of Episcopalianism b/c my local Catholic parish met in what could pass for a really ugly urology office.  We could all cite examples of Ugly Churches and Awful Music. 

Until the Church destroys the modernist notion that utility trumps beauty in our architecture and music, we will suffer from a deficiency of truth and goodness in our spiritual lives.   I'm not saying that all Catholic churches must be replicas of St Peter or St Mary Major, or that every parish must have a Gregorian Chant Choir. . .only that the stadium/retail store model must be stopped, and our use of pop music and Prot hymns must be suppressed.   

Please keep in mind that the Vatican thinks in terms of centuries not seasons, so any action on the part of the commission will likely come years from now and any results from their action probably won't be felt until the latter half of the 21st century.   Regardless, they will need our prayers!

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Coffee Bowl Browsing

Dem pollsters call for Obama to withdraw from the 2012 race and turn things over to Hillary.

And yet more Lefty hypocrisy:  Lead Whiner of the Occupy Movement checks into $700/night Manhattan hotel, "Tents are not for me."

Why couldn't this sort of thing happen in the U.S. my European brothers ask?  Three word answer for them:  the Second Amendment. . .which is why our Betters hate it so.

HA!  "Chicks Don't Dig Camping Out with Smelly Losers". . .the Occupy Movement's gender gap. 

DEO GRATIS!  A liturgical commission is being set up here in Rome to review church architecture and music.  NB.  the MSM (even in Italy) can't resist the temptation to describe everything the Vatican does as a "crackdown."

From $12 million to $36 million in two years:  Nancy Pelosi's doing OK in hard times.

When will the world end?  A list of Apocalypses from 2,800 B.C. to the heat death of the universe.

Throw me higher this time!!!

Well, at least he's taking responsibility. . .

Hmmmm. . .let's think this through:  if time is the relative measure of objective motion, then. . .

Time to visit the vet. . .oh, I think not.

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20 November 2011

From Mind to Word

A hearty Mille Grazie to those faithful HancAquam readers who have recently heeded my call for help in returning to poetry

As I move into full-time parish ministry, my preaching will need to be more than just philosophically astute and theologically accurate. . .it will need to be Beautiful as well!

Let the Lord shine out through both our words and deeds, and may I serve His Word with diligence and strength!

God bless, Fr. Philip

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