Posting Roman Catholic & Pro-Life News & Views

Monthly Archives: July 2016

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LifeNews.com Pro-Life News Report


For pro-life news updated throughout the day, visit LifeNews.com.

Top Stories
• Actress Ashley Judd Glad She Was Able to Abort Her Baby Instead of Having to “Deliver a Child”
• Democrat Delegates Change “Hillary” Convention Signs To “Liar”
• Mexican State Votes to Ban Abortions and “Protect Life From Conception”
• Pope Francis Condemns Abortion: Unborn Children “Must Always be Welcomed and Protected”


More Pro-Life News

• Planned Parenthood Says Hillary Clinton is the “Strongest” Pro-Abortion Nominee “We’ve Ever Seen”
• Catholic Church Gives Pro-Abortion Tim Kaine a Standing Ovation
• Mike Pence Says Donald Trump Will Nominate Supreme Court Judges Who Would Overturn Roe
• Tim Kaine Flip-Flops Again: He’s Had 5 Positions This Month on Forcing Voters to Fund Abortions

• Actress Debra Messing Praises Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards: She’s “A Warrior Woman”
• Activist Defends Bragging About Her Abortion at Democrat Convention: “It Was Overwhelmingly Positive”
• Woman Abandoned 22 Years Ago in a Phone Booth Reunites With Man Who Saved Her
• Abortion Activists Keep Denying Abortion Hurts Women With Link to Breast Cancer
• Women’s Rights Activist Shames Man Who Raped a Woman and Forced Her to Abort Her Baby
Here’s Another Reason Why Parents of Babies With Trisomy 13 or 18 Should Refuse Abortion

• Famous Performance Artist Marina Abramovic Had 3 Abortions So She Could Advance Her Career



Actress Ashley Judd Glad She Was Able to Abort Her Baby Instead of Having to “Deliver a Child”
Actress Ashley Judd spoke during the Democratic National Convention this week about protecting the rights of sexual assault survivors like herself.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

 


Democrat Delegates Change “Hillary” Convention Signs To “Liar”
The Democratic Party is still far from unified after a long and drawn-out primary season.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

Mexican State Votes to Ban Abortions and “Protect Life From Conception”
The Mexican state of Veracruz approved a constitutional amendment on Thursday that effectively bans abortions by recognizing that unborn babies deserve protection.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.



Pope Francis Condemns Abortion: Unborn Children “Must Always be Welcomed and Protected”
Upon his arrival in Poland, Pope Francis immediately began by speaking in defense of the unborn.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

Planned Parenthood Says Hillary Clinton is the “Strongest” Pro-Abortion Nominee “We’ve Ever Seen”
Hillary Clinton could potentially overtake President Barack Obama’s record as the most pro-abortion president in U.S. history if she wins the election, and Planned Parenthood just confirmed it.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

 

Catholic Church Gives Pro-Abortion Tim Kaine a Standing Ovation
On Sunday, Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine was given a standing ovation by his Catholic parish.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

Mike Pence Says Donald Trump Will Nominate Supreme Court Judges Who Would Overturn Roe
For pro-life voters there is no more important issue than the Supreme Court and the desperate need to change the makeup of a high court that is poised to continue virtually unlimited abortions another four decades.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

Tim Kaine Flip-Flops Again: He’s Had 5 Positions This Month on Forcing Voters to Fund Abortions
This morning Sen. Tim Kaine told CNN he supports the Hyde Amendment and his position has not changed.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.



Looking for an inspiring and motivating speaker for your pro-life event? Don’t have much to spend on a high-priced speaker costing several thousand dollars? Contact LifeNews at news@lifenews.com about having LifeNews Editor Steven Ertelt speak at your event.



   
   
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Your Support Helps HLI Defend Life & Family Around the World!
Dear Friends,

Thank you for your prayers during our mission to Tanzania the last two weeks. It was a blessed and productive time with our partners and new friends, though it is good to be home.

As we were completing our pro-life training program in Dar es Salaam, the Catholic Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar gathered in Angola. The meeting produced a strong document in which the bishops emphasized the irreplaceable role of marriage – one man and woman in an exclusive, indissoluble, and fruitful union – and the family.

Caring for the flock

The bishops not only reaffirmed Church teaching on marriage and family, they also stressed that the Church and society must defend these sacred institutions from the ideologies that undermine them:

Marriage and family are intimately linked together. We reaffirm the teaching of the Church, based on the Word of God: “Man shall leave his father and mother and cling to his wife; both become one body” (Gen 2: 24). Marriage binds a man and a woman together. The Lord proclaims this true nature of marriage, which in the mind of God, excludes divorce (Mat 19: 3-12). In Jesus Christ, marriage acquires its true meaning. The inseparable link of love between a man and a woman, marriage is open to life and procreation, as means of renewal of the society and the Church, therefore it cannot concern persons of the same sex.

Africans have a rich and wonderful sense of the sacredness of life. As HLI’s director of English-speaking Africa, Emil Hagamu, said in a short video we produced not too long ago: “We are a life loving people. We love children. We love life. We are all out to protect life and our families.”

This attitude toward the sacredness of life is evident to anyone who visits Africa. A Tanzanian priest told me during our mission: “Respect for life predates Christianity in Africa. It is deeply ingrained in our societies and cultures.”

When “aid” hurts

The family, or clan, is highly regarded in African culture, which is why the aged and sick are respected and cared for. Africans remember their ancestors and honor their memories through stories-a tradition that made teaching the doctrine of the Communion of Saints easy for Catholic missionaries in generations past. A pregnant woman is widely considered “blessed,” for she carries life within her. Children are welcomed as blessings – the complete opposite of the Western ideology that infects most of the “aid” and “development” projects foisted upon Africa.

To be sure, the various cultures of Africa have problems that do not necessarily originate in the West, several of which the bishops acknowledge in their statement. But these struggles are amplified, not alleviated, by pressure from wealthy countries to devalue life and family.

In spite of great difficulties and hardships, I continue to find that they are a joy-filled people, gracious, and generous. Africans celebrate life!

Coming from our own nation

The violence against marriage and the family has been consistently endorsed by the Obama administration and is official foreign policy. It ensures that US diplomacy and foreign assistance coincides with the promotion and protection of the so-called “reproductive rights” – contraception and abortion – and “LGBT rights.”

Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton, who as Obama’s Secretary of State threatened to remove development funds unless Africa reversed its defense of life and family, made the administration’s position clear again in a 2015 speech at Lincoln Center in New York:

Rights have to exist in practice, not just on paper. Laws have to be backed up with resources, and political will. Deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs, and structural biases have to be changed.

Faced with this and other blatant attacks upon their people, the bishops of Africa stand strong:

These different challenges destabilize the life of couples and families, especially when there is no strong pastoral strategy in place. As pastors, we cannot but be committed to renewal of and to reinvigoration of our pastoral approaches for the families. We are convinced and believe that the Family cannot be subdued by the crises and situations that confront it. Therefore, in the proclamation of the Gospel of Family, we are to be the witnesses of hope.

A response from the heart of Africa

During HLI’s recent pro-life training program in Tanzania, we met with seminarians, priests, consecrated religious men and women, and lay leaders from across English speaking Africa. At the heart of our discussions was how to confront the aggression of the West upon the life-loving culture of Africa. One of the leaders stated a common sentiment among the group:

We need our religious and civil leaders to protect us from the radical ideologies that seek to undermine our way of life. We need to teach the younger generation about the rich heritage of African culture – a culture that loves and respects life and family. We need to address the root causes of poverty and corruption. Political corruption must be aggressively removed and not tolerated.

This is affirmed by Mr. Hagamu in the aforementioned video:

Africans need assistance with infrastructure. We need to have good roads. We need to have good hospitals and medicines. We need to have good schools. We don’t need condoms. We don’t need contraception. We don’t need abortion.

We’ve heard for years about how there are many African medical clinics that have little to no medicine but have pallets of contraceptives and condoms. The roads are deplorable and in many places people have little to no access to clean water or genuine medical care or education. Since 1996 the USA and other developed nations have spent over 65 billion dollars on anti-life programs in Africa — 137 billion in countries around the world — with little to show for it except paternalism, exploitation, and violation of peoples and cultures.

Imagine the possibilities

Imagine having this amount of money placed into the right hands. Imagine a change in our policy toward Africa, one in which any funding sent to Africa required government reform that removes power from a corrupt class that benefits from aid while the poor continue to suffer. Invest the funding in African businesses, giving them agency in developing their own nation and fostering laws, policies, and culture that value and protect private property and entrepreneurship and prioritize educational opportunities.

Of course this is exactly what many elites from the West fear the most – an Africa standing on its own, free of corruption and dependency; an economic power, with strong families where every life is seen as precious. Imagine if our support for Africa was based on the truth that every human person is made in God’s image, is called to share in His creative effort to transform the world, and is destined to be with Him for all eternity. Can you imagine how different our policy would be toward Africa, and how after a while our constant “help” would no longer be required?

Sometimes it seems to me that the West, as it gradually dies from its embrace of radical secularism and anti-life ideologies, wants that rest of the world to die with it. Let us pray that the people and leaders of Africa will have the courage to reject this cancer and choose life.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Father Shenan J. Boquet
President, Human Life International
TandC Newsletter 012113-2
Cases like D’s are common around the world, and, unfortunately, many of them don’t end as well as this difficult story. The pro-choice movement tries to make it seem like more women are forced into pregnancy than abortion. But coerced abortion is not rare. In a study of the effects of abortion on American and Russian women by Medical Science Monitor, 64% of American women who had had one abortion said others pressured them into the abortion. 37% of Russian women said the same. 79% of American women and 72% of Russian women said that parental involvement was not helpful in their abortion decision, and 64% of American women and 41% of Russian women said that their partner did not offer support during their pregnancies. – continue
fetus, baby
Former abortionist Dr. Anthony Levatino describes 1st trimester dilation and cutterage abortions and 2nd trimester dilation and evacuation abortions, two common practices which tear babies limb from limb, finally crushing the skull to fit it through the cervix. “The abortionist knows he has crushed the skull when a white substance comes out of the cervix. This was the baby’s brains.” Dr. Levatino also describes babies being deprived of shelter and nutrients inside the womb by abortion pills and being poisoned with a digoxen injection piercing the baby’s head or chest. – continue
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Christian Worldview

 

Confront This Now!

July 29, 2016 A.D.

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July 29, 2016 A.D.

August 15, 2016 – Can hell be opened or shut?

A Friend of Medjugorje revealed in the July 21, 2016, Mejanomics broadcast, This is a Call to Confrontation, and in the July 28, Mejanomics Special, Don’t Let It Be ‘Woe’ America, details about a satanic event planned in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, called, “black mass and the consumption of Mary.” This is a demonic inversion of the Mass, and desecration of a statue of the Virgin Mary, intended to “unleash a hellmouth”1 on the earth. The date of August 15 is no coincidence. The satanic church hosting this event said:

“…we’re trying to get damned…”2

The satanic church is intending to create an, “opening to hell.”3

Before the recent terrorist events in Saint Etienne-du-Rouvray, France, showing what happens when darkness is allowed to come to the earth, a Friend of Medjugorje had put out a strong call to contact Archbishop Paul Coakley of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, who has great authority to stop this event. The recent events in France only make stronger, the need to act soon. The Archbishop’s information follows at the very end. There is a short window of time to act.

These two broadcasts are a must-listen to educate you and inspire you to take action. The first broadcast is a prelude to the second. Make sure that you are spreading these to everyone you know.

This is a Call to Confrontation Don't Let It Be 'Woe' America

Already many are getting informed and taking action, and people are telling us of their disgust, not only of this event, but also of their own churches.


“…Thank you for informing us of the widespread attempts of satan/evil to warp a message. This attempt of disrespect to Our Lady and Our Lord is disgusting… I contacted that writer of the article [about the black mass]… it (the article describing the event) is awful and I, too, couldn’t read all of it… I also sent a letter to His Excellency, Archbishop Coakley…”

J.M.
Tucson, AZ

“…What is going on? In our diocese on August 15 our churches will be locked. It’s our priest’s day off. No Holy Mass. This is Our Lady’s real Feast day, a Holy day in the past. In Oklahoma City, a priestess will [not mentionable here]. Where are Her children? If we all asked our Bishops for a day of Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, do you think we could have it? Even the world understands that when good men do nothing evil wins out…”

C.V.
Harrisonville, Missouri

“…I shared this on Facebook, I wrote to Bishop Coakley, and also to my own bishop – begging him to go to Oklahoma to support his brother bishop, to defend Our Lord and Our Lady against this vicious attack, and I begged him to invite all of us to go with him! Call us out to pray, lead your people out into the streets and we will follow you! We stand behind you! We believe in you as a bishop! You have been given power and authority by Christ. “Be not afraid” to use it! Our Lady of Medjugorje said: ‘My apostles, I need you to show everyone the truth of God, so that my heart, which suffered and today suffers so much pain, can win in love. Pray for the holiness of your shepherds, so that in the name of my Son they could work miracles, because holiness works miracles.’ (May 2, 2015)”

Susan
Dryden, Michigan

Below is the contact information for Archbishop Paul Coakley of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Be strong yet respectful in your letters. The power is in the written letter. Follow up with a phone call. Email is impersonal, and does not have the power that a written letter does. Do not email.

Archdiocese of Oklahoma City
Archbishop Paul Coakley
7501 NW Expressway
Oklahoma City, OK 73132
Phone: 405-721-5651
Please be strong, as well as respectful in your letters.


Footnotes:

1. Black Mass and the Consumption of Mary set for Aug. 15, 2016, by Ben Luschen – okgazette.com, June 29, 2016
2. Ibid.
3. Ibid.

 

 






LifeNews.com Pro-Life News Report


For pro-life news updated throughout the day, visit LifeNews.com.

Top Stories
• Hillary Clinton Promotes Free Abortions: “Let’s Go Out There and Make It Happen”
• Cosmopolitan Magazine Says Bill and Hillary Clinton are “Good Marriage Role Models”
• Abortion Activist at Democrat Convention Slams Pro-Lifers: “They Just Want to Control Women”
• Democrats are Outraged That Chick-Fil-A is Served at the Democrat National Convention


More Pro-Life News

• Hey Democrats, Quit Saying Women Should Support Hillary Clinton Just Because We’re Women
• Watch Obama Refer to Himself 119 Times During His Speech to Nominate Hillary Clinton
• After They Applauded Woman Bragging About Her Abortion How Can Any Christian Vote Democrat?
• Tim Kaine Flip-Flops Again: He Won’t Stop Hillary Clinton From Pushing for Free Abortions

• Differences Between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton on Abortion are Actually Huge
• Even This Former Obama Staffer Thinks the Democrat Platform Pushing Free Abortions is Extreme
• Adorable Video Shows Deaf 3-Month-Old Baby Hearing Mommy’s Voice for the First Time
• 36% of Democrats Think Abortion Should be Illegal but Hillary’s Party Wants Unlimited Abortions
• Gospel Singer Lady Bee Thought About Aborting Her Baby But Thanks God She Chose Life
Here’s the Incredible Moment a Baby “Walks” From His Mother’s Womb in a “Natural Caesarian”

• Planned Parenthood Upsets Mormons by Using LDS Saying on Packages of Condoms
• Amazing Fetal Surgery Shows Unborn Babies are People Too



Hillary Clinton Promotes Free Abortions: “Let’s Go Out There and Make It Happen”
During her keynote address to the Democratic convention on Thursday night, Hillary Clinton wasted no opportunity promoting abortion.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

 


Cosmopolitan Magazine Says Bill and Hillary Clinton are “Good Marriage Role Models”
Only the sex-obsessed writers at Cosmopolitan could try that line out. There are a lot of ways to try to defend the Clintons, but that’s not one.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

Abortion Activist at Democrat Convention Slams Pro-Lifers: “They Just Want to Control Women”
A leading abortion activist at the Democratic national convention last night slammed pro-life Republicans, saying they “just want to control women.”

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.



Democrats are Outraged That Chick-Fil-A is Served at the Democrat National Convention
Democrats in Philadelphia at the Democratic National Convention at apparently outraged that the Christian-owned and operated Chick-Fil-A has food available for purchase both inside and outside the convention arena.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

Hey Democrats, Quit Saying Women Should Support Hillary Clinton Just Because We’re Women
If you’re a woman, how can you not support Hillary Clinton for president? That was the message repeated over and over again at the Democratic National Convention this week.”

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

 

Watch Obama Refer to Himself 119 Times During His Speech to Nominate Hillary Clinton
It’s often been said that President Barack Obama has been the most narcissistic president ever — with so many speeches filled with “I” and “me.”

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

After They Applauded Woman Bragging About Her Abortion How Can Any Christian Vote Democrat?
This week, popular conservative blogger Matt Walsh tackled the question of whether Christians can vote Democrat because of the party’s increasing devotion to the abortion industry.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.

Tim Kaine Flip-Flops Again: He Won’t Stop Hillary Clinton From Pushing for Free Abortions
Hillary Clinton’s vice presidential running mate keeps going back and forth on his position on taxpayer-funded abortions.

Click to Read at LifeNews.com.



Looking for an inspiring and motivating speaker for your pro-life event? Don’t have much to spend on a high-priced speaker costing several thousand dollars? Contact LifeNews at news@lifenews.com about having LifeNews Editor Steven Ertelt speak at your event.



   
   

 

(c) Mateo Ivankovic 2016

JMJ

July 29, 2016
St. Martha
 
Dear Family of Mary!
 
“Dear children! I am looking at you and I see you lost; and you do not have prayer or joy in your heart. Return to prayer, little children, and put God in the first place and not man. Do not lose the hope which I am carrying to you. May this time, little children, every day, be a greater seeking of God in the silence of your heart; and pray, pray, pray until prayer becomes joy for you. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (July 25, 2016)
 
As I was sitting here looking very stupidly at my computer screen, not knowing what to write, I got a text from Kelly, a shipmate in Texas. She asked me a great question:
 
“I have been very concerned about Our Lady’s last message. I know you said it was good news that she is looking at us, but I’m worried about the lost part. I didn’t know I was lost. (“Dear children! I am looking at you and I see you lost;)
 
“It reminds me of a time when I was a new driver heading to my friend’s house. I was driving along when I realized I didn’t know where I was or how to get back! I was lost and scared. I had to call my dad from the toll booth lady for directions home! No GPS then! Can you say something about this??”
 
Hmmm…. Kelly was headed to her friend’s house. This was a good destination, a good choice. But somehow she missed her way, and ended up in unknown territory. She got lost, but it took a while to realize it! Thank the Lord for the toll booth lady, through whom she could call her dad!!!
 
I think Our Lady may be warning us about the direction we are going in. Even if we think we have chosen a good destination, we may be misdirected, headed the wrong way. And it could take a while to realize it! We may be choosing heaven, but we may not be going the right way to get there.
 
I think the answer is in the next sentence of the message. Our Lady says, “Return to prayer, little children, and put God in the first place and not man.” Kelly was driving along, independent, enjoying her new found freedom as a driver, and she got lost. But how did she find her way? She called her dad!! She called her father, the one who was responsible for her and knew the way! What does Our Lady tell us: “Put God in the first place and not man.” She tells us not to think that the human race can find its own way. We can’t. We need to be directed by the Father of the human race, God Himself. He is the one who knows the way to life, to eternity, to happiness, to home. We need to phone God the Father, if we can find the toll booth lady!!
 
All kidding aside, it seems to me that in our age of the world, with our technology, our power, our science, our systems, we humans think we know the way home, the way to happiness and peace. We are listening to each other all the time, with our opinions about what is good and evil, what is human and not human, what is just and not just, what is love and what is not love. And most of those opinions have been formed without God. They are leading us on a wild goose chase, and we are getting more and more lost from the Truth.
 
The fruit of putting man in the first place is complete chaos.
 
But we have a toll booth lady, Mary, our Mother! And she is waiting for us to come to her booth, borrow her phone, and call our Dad!! She will help us find the way home! She will get us in touch with the One who made us and knows exactly what will make us happy, peaceful, just, holy, and ready for eternity. She will give us a direct line to our Dad if we let her. It is through prayer.
 
I believe it is easy to get lost these days. One day spent without prayer, without the prayer Fr. Maximilian was talking about in his homily, is all it can take to get us hopelessly off track. We need to stay in touch with our heavenly GPS, the Father! He will give us the road signs we need to find our way to Him, if we stay on the line, and listen to Him every day.
 
I don’t think Our Lady is telling each of us that we are lost. Most of you are already in communication with the Lord, and finding your way. But she is looking at us collectively, and she sees where our human societies are headed. And she knows how powerful the pull is on us, even those of us who pray, to go with the flow and get lost. We must do as she says: “Do not lose the hope which I am carrying to you. May this time, little children, every day, be a greater seeking of God in the silence of your heart; and pray, pray, pray until prayer becomes joy for you.”
 
Maybe we can help others to turn off the wrong road as well, if we pray with the heart and seek God with our whole heart, soul, mind and strength! The key is putting God in the first place!!!  (And finding the toll booth lady!!  She’s in Medjugorje!) 
 
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
Cathy Nolan
©Mary TV 2016
 
PS. On Monday, August 1, the 27 Mladifest Medjugorje 2016 begins!! From August 1 to 6, 2016, youth from all over the world will gather in Medjugorje for six days of prayer, witnessing and worship!! Mary TV will live stream as much of the youth festival as we possibly can. Here is a link to the daily schedule:
 
 
During this time, we will have to change our streaming schedule to accommodate the festival:
 
There will be no “Hour of Mercy” from August 1 through 5
The Daily Rosary will air at 3:00 pm Medjugorje time (9:00 am EDT) from August 2 through 5
 
We will also record Mirjana’s Apparition on August 2, Lord willing, and post it on Tuesday as soon as we can!
 
Join us for this joyous and very important festival. And pray for our team, as they will be working in the heat all day long to film and transmit this time of prayer and sharing for young people!!
 
God bless!!
 

“Medjugorje is the spiritual center of the world.”
Saint John Paul II
Be connected!
www.marytv.tv

Mary TV, P.O. Box 899, Notre Dame, IN 46556

“When the well is dry, we will know the worth of water.” ~ Benjamin Franklin

Help us bring clean water to these school children in Mutomo, Kenya.
Dear Friends,

The people of Mutomo, Kenya, know the worth of water.

They are thirsty every day.

For children in this region, dehydration is the norm. Too many of these boys and girls are expected to make long, dangerous journeys to and from water. And, at the end of these journeys, the water that they collect is often contaminated, leading to a host of health issues.

Watch the Video
The challenge is real, but there is something that can be done, and you can help make it happen. But we need you to act now.

This July, let the Spirit of the Lord flow through you and help us reach our goal of delivering clean water to six primary schools in Mutomo, Kenya. Your support will allow us to purchase sustainable filtration systems, which will quench the thirst of thousands of children.

“Those who drink the water I will give them, will never be thirsty again.” John 4:14

This summer, the weather for many of us has been very hot. Most of us are fortunate that we can quench our thirst with a short walk to the sink. Today, I humbly ask you to consider being a spring of salvation for these school children in Kenya, so that they may have access something we often take for granted.

Send clean water
In His grace,


President and CEO
CMMB – Healthier Lives Worldwide

Copyright © 2016 CMMB, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:

CMMB

100 Wall Street, 9th Floor

New York, NY 10005


(c) Mateo Ivankovic 2016

JMJ

July 28, 2016
 
Dear Family of Mary!
 
“Dear children! I am looking at you and I see you lost; and you do not have prayer or joy in your heart. Return to prayer, little children, and put God in the first place and not man. Do not lose the hope which I am carrying to you. May this time, little children, every day, be a greater seeking of God in the silence of your heart; and pray, pray, pray until prayer becomes joy for you. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (July 25, 2016)
 
“Return to prayer, little children…”
 
Fr. Maximilian gave a homily on prayer at English Mass in Medjugorje, July 24, 2016. It was the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. And the readings were Gen 18:20-32, Col 2:12-14, Lk 11:1-13.
 
Lord, teach us how to pray. We should always ask this question. Jesus, teach us how to pray. Jesus, pray in us, for we don’t know how to pray. We should never say, “I know how to pray.” Because we are always beginners.
 
Prayer (the first word makes it clear) – Father – is a relation. A relation is always new. A relation is not a technique. If I enter into a relation with a technique, I don’t love that person, I am trying to manipulate. It easily becomes a temptation to possession. And when there is possession in a relationship, there is no love. It is the opposite of love, because love is to give oneself.
 
And so in prayer, we start, empty handed. We give ourselves, and God gives Himself. That is a loving relation. When the disciples ask Jesus, “Teach us how to pray,” He teaches them a vocal prayer. Vocal prayer is the foundation of all other prayers. If we see our spiritual lives like a building, vocal prayer is the ground floor, the earth. Because the earth is a sign of our body. It is the participation of our body in prayer. We pronounce words.
 
Vocal prayer can be said either in forms or in written prayer like the “Our Father”, the prayer that Jesus gave us. Or they can also be free words. Both are good. Obviously when we pray according to forms already given to us, like the Our Father, the Hail Mary, the Psalms, or when we pray with the Word of God, God teaches us how to speak with Him. Because by ourselves, we as human creatures in relation to God, we only stutter. We don’t know how to pray as St. Paul says to us. The Holy Spirit is guiding us into prayer, because without God we don’t know what to say.
 
But as St. Paul says, He teaches us to pray, and in these prayers we read in the Holy Bible, God teaches us which words to use. It’s wonderful. It’s wonderful to pray the Our Father, and the Hail Mary (which contains words from the Bible, at least the first part, with the very important words, the words of the Incarnation) and in the Psalms we learn how to speak to God in the way that He wants us to speak to Him, like the way the mother and father teach a child to speak!
 
We don’t know the language of God yet, which is the language of love. It is the language of relation, father and son. John Paul II spoke about prayer, that prayer is a relation between “I” and “you”.   We think in the beginning when we start to pray that the “I” is more important. I have to say this prayer, I have to finish this novena, I have to pray the Rosary and say this and that prayer, and inform God about all my needs. That is all good and holy.
 
But as we go along we discover that it is not all about the “I” but about the “you”. Because for God, from the heart of God, He starts our prayer. Our prayer is always an answer. We have to learn to listen to the voice of God, to allow the Holy Spirit to breath on us and to guide us into the depths of prayer.
 
Vocal prayer is the foundation. After that comes meditation, comes contemplation, which are higher levels that reach up to heaven. But we should never climb up there by ourselves. Only if we are guided by the Holy Spirit. Theresa of Avilla makes it very clear. “He who wants to arrive at contemplation by himself makes a big mistake.” We enter humbly, we pray vocal prayer, we meditate, and we listen to the Holy Spirit. And if He wants He helps us up.
 
In His house we know there is an elevator. If we go in that elevator which is the heart of Mary, she brings you straight up to the highest contemplation by saying a simple Our Father or Hail Mary!
 
Prayer is a relation. A familiar relation, Father. We ask the Father the greatest things. We ask the Father for His Glory. The first thing to ask is always the Glory of God because that is the end of all creation, is for God to be glorified.
 
And the best way is our sanctification, His Kingdom in us, in our midst and our hearts. And in the rest of the Our Father are the means to achieve these two fundamental goals. The first one, God Glorified, is the primary one. But how is this, that through our earthly relations, our familiar relations we can be heard. It may be difficult for us to speak to the Father in a friendly way because maybe we have not known our father or he has beaten us, so Jesus, for this reason and also other reasons, immediately he brings the parable about the friend.
 
In this parable, He speaks about a friend who speaks with another friend about a third friend. What does it mean but that God wants to be your friend? Mary has said in her messages, “You forget that God is your greatest friend.” And if there is true friendship with God, no storm can destroy it.
 
Now friends trust. And you can ask a friend anything. You see Abraham in the first reading, (Gen 18:20-32) that he dared to ask God again and again, please for more and more, he asked for more. But he stopped at 10, he should have stopped at one. He didn’t know Jesus! We can and we should ask God for the impossible, for the salvation of all. Obviously every prayer is heard. Jesus says, “Ask and you will receive, knock and it will be open to you.” He means that when we pray according to His will, when we pray for something which is needed, necessary and according for salvation, then He wants to give us all, all, everything. Because it is He Himself who prays in us.
 
Paul stated clearly, twice, that the Holy Spirit speaks in us, He prays in us, He cries in us. It is not only speaking, when we compose a prayer or contemplate our piety, but it becomes a cry, it becomes loud “Abba, Father!!!” We don’t say it, but the Holy Spirit in us does. In Romans 8 it says that the Holy Spirit prompts us to pray “Abba Father”. And in Galatians, the Holy Spirit in us prays. It is a collaboration with the Holy Spirit. In our prayer we have to listen to the Holy Spirit.
 
More and more it is not just a form, it is not just a duty, like the elder son in the Parable of the Prodigal Son who says, “I have always slaved for you, and you have never even given me a kid goat for my friends – to celebrate with my friends.” Because the father is not his friend, he was just the master and the son was the servant. That is not the way that God wants us to be with Him. Pray, worship Him, love Him, like a father, like a friend, like the best friend, the true friend. The word “charity” actually means friendship with God.
 
And so Abraham, through many tries becomes the “friend” of God. Why? Because he trusted God. He trusted God and so he could ask. And it was not he who asked good things and God was hesitating. Ok for fifty, ok for forty, ok for thirty, ok for even ten. No it was the Holy Spirit prompting Abraham, but Abraham was ready to ask so much because he had a heart full of mercy.
 
So God now is looking through Mary here in Medjugorje, and in the whole world, for people who have a friendship with God, who believe in His mercy so much that they dare to ask for the salvation of all. For mercy for all in the Year of Mercy where we talk about mercy, we read about mercy, we should start to invoke mercy.
 
Invoke mercy for our countries, for our families, for the world. God needs those friends who believe in His mercy, so that the Holy Spirit through us can cry out to God and God will listen to this cry. (English Mass Homily, July 24, 2016. Fr. Maximilian Dalve)
 
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
Cathy Nolan
©Mary TV 2016

“Medjugorje is the spiritual center of the world.”
Saint John Paul II
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