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Saint of the Day: Clare of Assisi

August 10th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags:

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St. Clare of Assisi

Feast Day: August 11

Though 10 years younger than her townsman, Francis of Assisi, Clare was drawn to his radical

St. Clare of Assisi by Simone Martini (Wikimedia Commons)

St. Clare of Assisi by Simone Martini (Wikimedia Commons)

message of serving God in abject poverty.

Despite objections from her aristocratic family, who wanted her to marry, she gave up the world with Francis’ help and founded the Second Order of St. Francis, known worldwide as the Poor Clares.

For 40 years, she guided the San Damiano community, whose nuns included her sister and widowed mother.

She served the other nuns who went out to beg, was often sick because of their hard life, and was proclaimed a saint just two years after she died.

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Peace activists urge U.S. to dismantle nuclear arsenal

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WASHINGTON — Saying the possession, upgrading and potential use of nuclear weapons was sinful, peace activists gathered outside the White House on the feast of the Transfiguration and implored the U.S. government to empty its arsenals and embrace a world of peace. Read more »

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Pope prays for victims of deadly attacks in Nigeria and Central African Republic

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Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis called for an end to violence against Christians following deadly attacks in two African countries. Read more »

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Catholic Relief Services envisions a world without need for orphanages

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Catholic News Service

BALTIMORE — Catholic Relief Services has released an emotion-filled video as a way of starting a conversation about the world’s orphanages. Read more »

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Saint of the Day: Lawrence O’Toole

August 9th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags:

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St. Lawrence O’Toole

Feast Day: August 10

The son of an Irish chieftain, Lorcan Ua Tuathail was held hostage for two years by a rival family.

St. Lawrence O'Toole (CNS)

St. Lawrence O’Toole (CNS)

He later became a monk, then abbot, at Glendalough, where his rule was strict.

In 1161, Lawrence became archbishop of Dublin; his chief work there was clergy reform.

In 1170, English King Henry II sent Anglo-Norman nobles to Ireland to dispatch Irish leaders; thereafter, Lawrence was embroiled in politics, the beginning of “the troubles” with England.

He attended the Third Lateran Council in Rome in 1179 and was appointed papal legate in Ireland.

He died in Normandy, while trying to mediate Norman-Irish property disputes with Henry, and was canonized in 1225.

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Sunday Scripture readings, Aug. 13, 2017

August 9th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags:

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Catholic News Service

 

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

 

1) 1 Kings 19:9A, 11-13A

Psalm 85:9-14

2) Romans 9:1-5

Gospel: Matthew 14:22-33

 

God Speaks in Silence

“God is a friend of silence,” said St. Teresa of Kolkata.

Amid the noise and busyness of each day moments of silence are sacred spaces in which God speaks his love, mercy and wisdom. We grow in friendship with God in times of silence, however brief and fleeting. Read more »

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Saint of the Week: Maximilian Kolbe

August 9th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags:

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St. Maximilian Kolbe

Feast Day: August 14

Raimund Kolbe, born in Russian Poland, was ordained a Franciscan, Maximilian Mary, in Rome.

St. Maximillian Kolbe (Wikimedia Commons)

St. Maximillian Kolbe (Wikimedia Commons)

In the 1920s, he reopened a ruined Polish friary, started a Marian press and was diagnosed with tuberculosis.

Despite his illness, he had successful Marian missions to Japan and India before returning to Poland in 1936.

After the 1939 invasion of Poland, the Franciscans’ criticism of the occupiers prompted the arrest of Maximilian and four others, who ended up in the Nazi death camp Auschwitz.

Maximilian volunteered for martyrdom, taking the place of a married man being executed by starvation.

This man was present at the saint’s 1982 canonization.

Maximilian is the patron of prisoners, journalists and others.

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Saint of the Day: Edith Stein

August 8th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags:

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St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)

Feast Day: August 9

St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein) (Wikimedia Commons)

St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein) (Wikimedia Commons)

The youngest of 11 children of a devout Jewish mother in Wroclaw, Poland, Edith was an atheist by her teens.

After studying philosophy in Germany, she was deeply affected by reading the autobiography of St. Teresa of Avila.

Baptized a Catholic in 1922, she joined the Discalced Carmelites in Cologne in 1933, taking the name Teresa Benedicta of the Cross.

Fleeing the Nazis, she moved to a convent in Echt, Netherlands, but was arrested with non-Aryan Christians after the Dutch bishops protested Nazi deportations.

She was martyred at Auschwitz.

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Saint of the Day: Dominic

August 7th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags:

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St. Dominic

Feast Day: August 8

As a theology student, this Spaniard sold his books to help others during a famine, and later held positions at the Osma Cathedral, where

St. Dominic (CNS)

St. Dominic (CNS)

community life followed the Rule of St. Augustine.

Dominic and his bishop went to southern France on a papal mission to fight the Albigensian heresy.

He remained in Toulouse, as head of a preaching mission that evolved into the Order of Preachers, or Dominicans.

Dominic always preferred persuasion to establish orthodoxy and was said by a friar to have “a lively sympathy with any suffering.”

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‘The Dark Tower’ is full of metaphysical hooey

August 4th, 2017 Posted in Uncategorized Tags: , ,

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Catholic News Service

Awash in high-flown metaphysical hooey, director and co-writer Nikolaj Arcel’s dull sci-fi fantasy “The Dark Tower” is inappropriate for the impressionable.

As for grown viewers, they should be prepared to slog through an involved exposition of non-scriptural ideas borrowed from the series of novels by Stephen King on which the film, penned with Akiva Goldsman, Jeff Pinkner and Anders Thomas Jensen, is built.

Matthew McConaughey stars in a scene from the movie "The Dark Tower." The Catholic News Service classification is A-III -- adults.

Matthew McConaughey stars in a scene from the movie “The Dark Tower.” The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults.

Extending rather than adapting the books, the movie uses the psychic nightmares of troubled New York teen Jake (Tom Taylor) to introduce us to a distant world, one of many, and the cosmic battle being fought out there. This struggle pits villainous wizard Walter O’Dim (Matthew McConaughey), aka the Man in Black, against Roland Deschain (Idris Elba), aka the Gunslinger.

O’Dim is bent on destroying the supernatural structure of the title which somehow, so we’re informed, keeps the evil lurking at the edges of the universe at bay. The lone remaining member of a group of Old West-style gunmen still resisting O’Dim and his cohorts, Roland is not only out to save the tower but yearns for revenge against O’Dim, whose spells have killed off every ally who has ever stood at his side.

While on the run from some of O’Dim’s minions in the Big Apple, Jake manages to get himself transported to Mid-World, one of the planets where this feud is being played out. Conveniently, the first person he encounters is Roland.

Despite an initially gruff reception, Jake convinces Roland that he can be of service to the cause. The bond that eventually develops between the two – Jake’s fireman father died in the line of duty — is one of the few potentially touching aspects of this tangled tale.

O’Dim’s method of assaulting the tower involves the torturous extraction of energy from the minds of kidnapped children. Since Jake has the gift of second sight, what the script terms “shine,” to an unrivaled degree, his psyche would represent the equivalent of a nuclear missile launched against the vital building — if, that is, O’Dim could only get his hands on the lad.

Roland is also endowed with paranormal powers, as too is a minor character who can read people’s thoughts and communicate with them without speaking. All this is portrayed very positively in a way that might mislead the poorly catechized. As for the religiously well-grounded, they would be wise to spare themselves the necessity of sifting through this pile of New Age nonsense.

The film contains occult themes, much gunplay and other violence, including torture, but with little gore, profanity and a couple of crude terms. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III, adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13.

 

Mulderig is on the staff of Catholic News Service.

 

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