Undergoing blog makeover.  

Posted by Heisan

Consumer magazine sponsored advertisements and covers rely heavily on professional page layout skills to compete for visual attention.Image via WikipediaAs of this time and date I made a makeover of my blog's layout and design to make it look better. So you may find it somewhat different from the classic templates provided by blogger.com. God bless all!

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A Christian Struggle with Sin.  

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Dispute of Jesus and the Pharisees over tribute moneyImage via WikipediaIn this Sunday's Gospel reading I just want to pour out what my thoughts have to say with regards to this. In Matthew 9:12-13 Jesus tells the Pharisees who are questioning his attitude by eating with the sinners and tax collectors which in their own time is considered sinners and unworthy to associate with. Jesus said "...Healthy people don't need a doctor, but sick people do. .... I did not come to call the righteous but sinners. Indeed it is easy to be called a Christian but it is hard to become a real one. Always in my life I have struggling in my blessed Catholic faith, how to live it, in my life, work and relationship. I am very much consoled with the Gospel readings and it gives me always hope that God indeed do come for me- a sinner. My relationship with God ever since in an uphill struggle towards perfection and often I fall more than I am victorious over my own sensuality and inordinate desires, but still like St. Augustine who once said that I must continue praying and begging God even in midst of sinfulness and unworthiness so that His river of Mercy would continue to flow and lead me back to repentance and confession of my own sins and failures. So I must move on and face my sinfulness, learn to forgive myself and beg God for mercy and love which is in abundance for He is a merciful and forgiving God.

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Does the Devil Exist?  

Posted by Heisan

I am wondering why now a days people seems not to believe the reality of the Devil, meaning a devil who exist as a person or pure spirit. Most people today Catholics or not and even members of the Church Hierarchy seems to dismiss the reality of the Devil. I've stumble this article which I think is interesting to post here. Does the Devil do really exist or just a fancy of human imagination or it exist not as a being but as an effect of human action against the will of God. Read the article...

The importance of Liturgy in Christian Life  

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I been reading the documents of Vatican II now a days and in the introduction on the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy it says;
" For it is the liturgy through which, especially in the divine sacrifice of the Eucharist, "the works of our redemption is accomplished," and it is through the liturgy, especially, that the faithful are enabled to express in their lives and manifest to others the mystery of Christ and the real nature of the true Church." Indeed the liturgy, especially the Eucharistic sacrifice enables us to participate in the life of Christ and His Church for it is the way to fully express our belief and added to that it must transcend beyond the confines of the church building it must flow through in our daily activities. Liturgy does not end in the celebration of it but it continues even when we are doing our menial task and duties in life. Lately did I know the full meaning of what I am celebrating in the liturgy but I am very much grateful to God for giving me His Church where I can fully unite with Him in the daily celebration of the Sacred Liturgy. Liturgy is what makes me respond to the call of worshiping the Lord daily, hourly and the whole of the year.

A Reflection on the Question of Suffering  

Posted by Heisan

I have stumble a good post for reflection on this Holy week this is an excerpt from the book God and the World:A Conversation with Peter Seewald (Ignatius Press,2002), by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, pages 332-36,333.
It is about the question of suffering. Here is the excerpt:

Seewald: We are used to thinking of suffering as something we try to avoid at all costs. And there is nothing that many societies get more angry about than the Christian idea that one should bear with pain, should endure suffering, should even sometimes give oneself up to it, in order thereby to overcome it. "Suffering", John Paul II believes, "is a part of the mystery of being human." Why is this?

Cardinal Ratzinger: Today what people have in view is eliminating suffering from the world. For the individual, that means avoiding pain and suffering in whatever way. Yet we must also see that it is in this very way that the world becomes very hard and very cold. Pain is part of being human. Anyone who really wanted to get rid of suffering would have to get rid of love before anything else, because there can be no love without suffering, because it always demands an element of self-sacrifice, because, given temperamental differences and the drama of situations, it will always bring with it renunciation and pain.

When we know that the way of love–this exodus, this going out of oneself–is the true way by which man becomes human, then we also understand that suffering is the process through which we mature.

Continue reading....

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I am very much eager to post this events here in my blog. This is about the consecration of the new Catholic Church building that has been erected here in the State of Qatar. The consecration rite is held last Saturday 15 of March. It is presided by His Eminence Ivan Cardinal Dias, Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. It is a great day for all of us here for we now have a permanent edifice for celebrating the Eucharistic Sacrifice. Here are some of the photos that I have taken though I wasn't able to follow it through since I am busy attending to the medical needs of the faithful there present. This is the best I can post here.

This is the inside view of the Church. This is the main sanctuary of the Church and it can accommodate 2,000 people. At the back of the main sanctuary there are seven small chapels for use in ordinary times by other Catholic rites here present in Qatar, we have here Maronites, Syrian Catholics, Syro-Malabar, Armenian Catholic, Greek Catholic,Chaldean,Coptic and Syro-Malankara rites aside from the Roman Rite. The stained glass panels in the main altar is from an old French church made possible by the former French Ambassador Bertrand Besancenot.

This is the view of the main entrance of the Church. The design of the whole Church has many frame of reference. It is reminiscent of the mantle of our Lady, the large beams inside represents the folds, the chimney at the center of the roof is the collar. This is made so because cross here is still not allowed to be mounted outside in public.

This is the opening rite of consecration the handing of the key of the new Church to the Cardinal celebrant by the Parish Priest.

This is inside as the Rite of Consecration is unfolding which is presided by His Eminence Ivan Cardinal Dias. Indeed I could say "this is the day the Lord has made I rejoice and am glad." Alleluia!

Christ's Church and not Mine.  

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In my journey as a Catholic faithful the more I mature in my faith the more that I began to appreciate the beauty of the Catholic Church. The Church is essentially both human and divine just as her Lord is both God and man so the Church is endowed with the same nature as her Lord. Personally I could see that typology also in me. I am a person compose of both human and divine character in me. The divine essence in me is endowed by the Spirit in the baptismal font and I become the son of God through adoption. Now I began to see the two side of the Church because if we try to see only the human side of the Church we will just be discourage and loss faith and that happens to most Catholic faithful who left the Church. The human side of the Church is full of flaws and failures and Christ know that that's why He said "do not fear for I am with you until the end of time". Despite the human frailty that I see, the scandal that has been reported I still love the Church because it is not the Church the I want to fit into my own standards but first and foremost it is Christ's Church not mine and I should fit into it as Christ wants me to.

On Personal Religious Experience  

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In my daily readings of a book entitled "In Search for True Religion" I find this lines quite inspiring and touches me in a way that I can relate to it since I have this kind of experience in my journey as a Catholic faithful. The lines goes like this-In any personal religious experience there is the sense of a basic expectation. I sense that something is being asked of me. I experience myself being summoned and being sent. This call and mission gives basic meaning to my entire life. the expectation that is present is not something extra that is added to my existence but something that tends to constitute who I basically am. Who am I? the answer to that question is found in what I am called to be and missioned to be in this basic relationship.
The expectation that I experience in this relationship with an Absolute Thou may rather be vague, assuming no precise form. It may not give any clear indication of a precise path of action that is to be carried out. But even though it may be vague this expectation makes a major contribution to my life. I am sure that my life is not just a matter of staying alive and finding some privet satisfactions. From beyond something is expected of me. From beyond Someone expects a response from me.
I experience this expectation to be changing constantly. It does not exist in the form of fixed law ( such as the Ten Commandments) that stands above me. Rather, it appears as fresh and new demands that confront me each day, challenging me to respond. I am guided by this expectation to be creative and to grow.
This expectation usually embodies itself in the situations that I live through in the world of my daily life. The dialog with the Absolute Thou embraces all of those human situations. Through persons, trials and tasks found in my life God as a person is constantly meeting me with fresh messages and expectations.
Indeed this lines touches me since I basically have this experience in my life. And I come to the realization that God is not only experience by me in the Sense of the Sacred - meaning extraordinarily in miracles and apparitions but, God is their in the here and now of my daily life, in my work, in my family, in my friends and foe alike and in every creature and in whatever daily situations I am into.

The Road to God is the Road on which we walk now  

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In my daily readings of my favorite Catholic inspirational writer Carlo Caretto I have come across a very good reflection that I want to share here. He mentioned in the pages the following very inspiring and simple contemplation. He said that the road to God is the Road on which we walk now.And that we should feel and see the creatures, every creature.

Why take such an interest in a dewdrop appearing on the Virgin's eyelash in a painting, yet not see all the dewdrops of a morning in spring?
Why go miles and miles to see the dubious stigmata on someone or other's hands, yet not move a step to contemplate the sore-covered hands of the poor?
Begin feeling God in creatures. See his beauty in the beauty of the sun as it rises on your human day. Hear his voice in the voice of the brother beside you, trying to communicate with you.
Waste no more time, seeking God in your own fantasies.
Once you realize how miraculous it is that a bee can find the door of its hive, you will feel that God id near you and near your silence.
Try and sing.
For the sky that you have given us, alleluia!
For the sun that you have given us, alleluia!
For the sea that you have given us, alleluia!
For the friends that you have given us, alleluia!
Yes, alleluia, even if the sky is sometimes cloudy.
Alleluia, even if the sun is sometimes scorching
Alleluia if sea is sometimes stormy
Alleluia, even if your friends do not always see eye to eye with you.
All is grace
All is God, loving me.
Gos is in all, molding me.
God is in all, making me his son.
Right indeed! For only in seeing the whole of creation in its simplicity and beauty that is hidden from the human eyes but can be seen by faith do we able to reach God not only ones but daily we experience heaven.

Conviction and not Opinion needed today!  

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I attended the Eucharistic celebration today and the priest celebrant's homily is very interesting and enlightening that I want to share it here. The Gospel and the homily is for the coming 3rd Sunday in the Ordinary time-"The calling of Peter,Andrew, James and John in the Sea of Galilee by our Lord. Here is what he said in his homily: " There is a group of tourist who are visiting the great cathedrals of Europe and they are being guided and given the information about every Cathedrals they have visited. One from the tourist said "Why can't we build like this magnificent edifice nowadays?" An old lady from the group replied "You know people during that times have conviction ours are only opinion."
Conviction and not opinion is what we must do as Christians and particularly Catholics in todays society who is leaning and plunging more and more its day into secularism and the denial of God. Conviction to stand for our faith. Conviction to hold more closely to Christ the Lord of the Universe. Conviction to prove to world that it is not in material things that we can have happiness and fulfillment but in the simplicity of believing in the Lord of Life. We have to take the examples of Peter, Andrew, James and John in the Sunday's Gospel that follows the Lord "at once" without hesitation to become "fisher's of men".

Simplicity and the beauty of it!  

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While reading a Catholic inspirational book with the title "Simplify and live a Good Life" by Bro. Bo Sanchez a well-known local lay Catholic evangelist in my home country the Philippines I come across a page that is worth posting here. It says: "I believe that God chose to write the "map of happiness" on the ordinary parchment of simplicity- like a treasure map written on recycled brown paper. Consequently, many people ignore that map, and are attracted instead to the more glossy, loud, shiny maps around. But when they follow these other maps, they end up tired as a dog chasing its own tail......
Simplify because you want to discover the depths of your soul.
Simplify because you want to start living deliberately.
Simplify because you want to love from an uncluttered heart.
Remember that simplicity is only the first step of the journey. Holding the treasure map, memorizing it, photocopying it a thousand times and keeping it safe in a vault won't make you claim the gold. You actually need to sail through oceans, climb peaks, cross valleys and explore caves.
Simplicity will point you to where and what and who the gold is in your life.
Once you know your gold, the game has just begun."
And he poses this question, "Will you treasure your gold?"
In my case I know where, what and who is the gold in my life: my wife, my extended family, my kids and my blessed Catholic faith with these in my heart I search no further. All my plans, my endeavor and my objectives is focused on this gold that is in my life already and need not search anywhere for they are always there with me wherever I go. I remember what Pope John XXIII in his "Journal of a Soul" says: "The older I grow, the more clearly I perceive the dignity and winning beauty of simplicity in thought, conduct and speech: a desire to simplify all that is complicated and to treat everything with the greatest naturalness and clarity."
So be it!

Life in Christ: Catechism #2094  

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One can sin against God's love in various ways: indifference neglects or refuses to reflect on divine charity; it fails to consider its prevenient goodness and denies its power; ingratitude fails or refuses to acknowledge divine charity and to return him love for love; lukewarmness is hesitation or negligence in responding to divine love; it can imply refusal to give oneself over to the prompting of charity; acedia or spiritual sloth goes so far as to refuse the joy that comes from God and to be repelled by divine goodness; hatred of God comes from pride. It is contrary to love of God, whose goodness it denies, and whom it presumes to curse as the one who forbids sins and inflicts punishments.