Saturday, January 20, 2018

How We March will Decide the Victory: March for Life 2018



How We March will Decide the Victory: March for Life 2018
How We March will Decide the Victory: March for Life 2018

For the 45th year, hundreds of thousands of Americans flooded the nation’s capital for the annual March for Life, calling for the end of the slaughter of innocents through the sin of abortion. Members of the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) united with so many others in the march for the end of the Culture of Death.
The beating of drums and clash of cymbals, trumpet fanfares and the captivating sound of bagpipes rang throughout the crowded streets of Washington. The music performed by the American TFP’s Holy Choirs of Angels Band helped give an upbeat and determined attitude to the resolute pro-life warriors marching.

Showing their support, foreign delegations from sister organizations of the American TFP joined the march including Droit de Naître (France) and Krikščionškosios Kultūros Gynimo Asociacja (Lithuania). Among the notable guests was Duke Paul of Oldenburg from Aktion SOS Leben (Germany).

Hope and Confidence

The message distributed by the American TFP was one of hope and confidence. The TFP’s 2018 statement, A Tale of Two Marches: Reasons for Hope and Confidence, encouraged the marchers to confide in God’s grace. It also exhorted everyone to keep the pro-life message firm and strong. One can never water the pro-life message down. The core of the pro-life movement is the absolute rejection of the Culture of Death in all its many forms.
How We March will Decide the Victory: March for Life 2018
TFP Holy Choirs of Angels Band

To quote the flyer, “No one respects those who have no character and betray their principles to gain popularity.”
The core of the message? Never compromise.

Watch the 2018 March for Life Video

President Trump Speaks at March

The pro-life movement gained some serious wind in its sails during President Donald Trump’s first year in office.
President Trump addressed the March for Life via satellite from the White House. Addressing the multitude of marchers, he said, “Under my administration, we will always defend the very first right in the Declaration of Independence, and that is the right to life.”
The president continued, “We are protecting the sanctity of life and the family as the foundation of our society. But this movement can only succeed with the heart and the soul and the prayer of the people.”

Finally, he ended with some words of encouragement for the March for Life, “Thank you to the March for life, special, special people. And we are with you all the way. May God bless you and may God bless America.”
The Trump Administration has consistently supported the pro-life march. Last year, Vice President Mike Pence was the first vice president to personally address the March for Life.
How We March will Decide the Victory: March for Life 2018
TFP members process with a statue of Our Lady of Fatima

How We March Decides the Victory

Victory belongs to those who fight and persevere to the end. It does not matter how hard, trying, or seemingly impossible. The victors are those who overcome all obstacles and have their eyes on the prize. Nothing should impede their desire to reach that goal.
With this hope and confidence, they will conquer. Better yet, God will triumph, and the Culture of Death and all its forms will be defeated.



VIDEO: March for Life 2018

My purpose

God's purpose in creating us is
to draw forth from us a response of love and service here on earth,
so that
we may attain our goal of everlasting happiness with Him in heaven.

St. Ignatius Loyola

Pope St. Fabian and St. Sebastian

Pope St. Fabian was the first layman ever to be elected to the papacy. Before entering into his pontificate in 236, Fabian was a humble and well respected farmer. Upon the death of his predecessor, Pope Anterus, Fabian traveled with some companions to Rome to mourn his passing with the faithful and to be present when the new pope was elected. While attending the council to determine who Anterus’ successor would be, a dove suddenly appeared and descended upon the head of Fabian as a clear sign of his divine election.  By unanimous vote, Fabian was instantly chosen as the next pope.

During his fourteen-year pontificate, the Church enjoyed relative peace under Emperor Philip, and Fabian was able to do much to consolidate and develop the Church. He died a martyr’s death in 250 and was one of the first victims of the persecution under Emperor Decius, who considered him a rival and personal enemy. He was buried in the Catacomb of Calixtus.

Celebrated alongside St. Fabian is the Roman martyr, Sebastian. Though the narrative of his story is largely unhistorical, legend tells us that he was a young officer in the imperial army, who secretly dedicated himself to the spiritual and temporal assistance of the Christians and martyrs. It was he who exhorted Sts. Marcus and Marcellianus to constancy in the Faith and inspired them with the courage to face their deaths when they began to waver under the pleas of their friends. Being thus discovered, Sebastian was condemned by Emperor Diocletian and delivered over to Mauritanian archers to be shot to death. Miraculously, he survived though and was nourished back to health by St. Zoe, a convert of his and mother of Sts. Marcus and Marcellianus. Refusing to flee, Sebastian confronted the Emperor again and harshly reproached him for his cruelty to the Christians. He died in 288 after being clubbed to death and his body thrown into the common sewer. It was privately removed, and he also was buried in the cemetery of Calixtus.

Although St. Fabian and St. Sebastian’s feasts are liturgically separate, they are celebrated on the same day; and the relics of the two saints are both kept and venerated together in the Basilica of St. Sebastian in Rome.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Enough exhortations!

We’ve had enough of exhortations to be silent!
Cry out with a hundred thousand tongues.
I see that the world is rotten
because of silence.

St. Catherine of Siena

St. Wulfstan of Worcester

Wulfstan (Wulstan) was a native of Warwickshire, England.  After his priestly ordination, he became a novice at the monastery of Worcester where he edified all by the innocence and sanctity of his life. He was assiduous at prayer, often watching all night in church.

The first task assigned to him at the monastery was the instruction of children, then treasurer and eventually - though against his fierce resistance - he was made prior. In 1062, he was elected Bishop of Worcester.

Wulfstan was a powerful preacher, often moving his audience to tears.

To his vigorous action is particularly attributed the suppression of the heinous practice among the citizens of Bristol of kidnapping men into slavery and shipping them over to Ireland. St. Patrick who became the great apostle and patron of the Irish was such a slave in his youth.

After the Norman conquest of England, William the Conqueror was initially uncertain about Wulfstan. But acknowledging his capacity and uprightness, Wulfstan was the only bishop William retained at his post under the new rule.

For the next thirty years Wulfstan rebuilt his cathedral, cared for the poor and put forth great effort in alleviating the harsh decrees of the Normans upon the vanquished Saxons. Whenever the English complained of the oppression of the Normans, Wulfstan told them: “This is a scourge of God for our sins, which we must bear with patience.”

The saintly bishop died on January 19 at eighty-seven years of age after washing the feet of a dozen poor men, a humble ritual he performed daily. He was canonized in 1203.
Photo by: Christopher Guy

Protectress of the Unborn: Our Lady of Guadalupe




Why “Patroness of the Unborn”?
Of all the many manifestations of Mary’s loving presence among us throughout the centuries, in this apparition alone does she appear to us in the manner of a pregnant mother. She holds within her the unborn Christ, proclaiming the sanctity and blessedness of life within the womb. Her reverence and tenderness communicate to us the joy and awe with which we must approach each embryonic life.
Since 1973, with the Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade which gave legal protection to the monstrous sin of abortion, a parallel shedding of innocent blood has taken place. The unborn innocent victim is brutally tortured in that very place he was placed by God for his protection and development.
Today we find ourselves in the midst of an even more enormous and dramatic conflict between good and evil, the "culture of life" and the "culture of death." Just as Our Lady of Guadalupe freed the indigenous peoples of Mexico from their savage customs, so can she “crush the serpent’s head” here in America under the title of “Protectress of the Unborn.”
Let us not cease in crying out for her protection on behalf of our pre-born brothers and sisters. Only by imitating Our Lady’s respect for life from the moment of conception can we hope to inherit Life itself. Under her gentle direction we find not only shelter and rest, but confidence and strength to go forth to battle the evil of abortion in our land. Full of confidence in her power to obtain great victories from God, let us turn to Our Lady of Guadalupe.


A Brief Story of Our Lady of Guadalupe
On December 12, 1531, the Blessed Virgin Mary spoke to a humble native in his own Nahuatl tongue. The exact sound that met the Mexican’s ears was “Juanito, Juan Diegito.” It was an endearing expression that a fond mother would use for her child. English would render it: “Dear little Juan.”
She motioned Juan to come closer. Advancing a step or two he sank to his knees, overwhelmed by the loveliness of the vision. The beautiful lady requested that a shrine be built and dedicated to her on the Hill of Tepeyac. Speaking to him in the native language, Our Lady called herself “of Guadalupe,” a Spanish name meaning the one "who crushes the serpent."
Sadly, the bishop refused to believe that the Mother of God would appear to a poor, illiterate Mexican like Juan. Juan returned to the place of the apparition where Our Lady again appeared. She told him to return the next morning when she would give him a sign that would convince the bishop of the truth of her appearance and her request.
The following morning Our Lady told Juan to go to the top of the hill and gather Castilian roses that he would find there. Although he knew that only cactus grew there, he obeyed, and his simple faith was rewarded by the sight of beautiful roses growing where she had told him they would be.
He gathered them and showed them to Our Lady who rearranged them for him, placing them in his cloak or “tilma.” Juan returned to the bishop. As he opened his tilma, the roses fell to the floor. All who were present were startled to see an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe clearly imprinted on the tilma.
Today this image is still preserved on Juan Diego's tilma, which hangs over the main altar in the basilica at the foot of Tepeyac Hill just outside of Mexico City.
In the image, Our Lady is pregnant, carrying the Son of God in her womb. Her head is bowed in homage, indicating that she is not a goddess, but rather the one who bears and at the same time worships the one true God.

The Serpent’s Head Is Crushed
When Mary first appeared to Blessed Juan Diego, Mexico had been in the hands of Christian leaders for only a short time. Human sacrifice, where the blood of innocents was often spilled to appease the thirsty demons of the old rite, was still practiced. The Aztec priests executed annually at least 50,000 inhabitants of the land — men, women and children — in human sacrifices to their gods. In 1487, just in a single four-day ceremony for the dedication of a new temple in Tenochtitlan, some 80,000 captives were killed in human sacrifice. The same practices, which in most cases included the cannibalism of the victims’ limbs, were common also in earlier Mesoamerican cultures, with widespread Olmec, Toltec and Mayan human sacrificing rituals.
Children were said to be frequent victims, in part because they were considered pure and unspoiled. The early Mexican historian Ixtlilxochitl estimated that one out of every five children in Mexico were sacrificed. Into this cavern of darkness and ignorance, our Lady of Guadalupe brought a message of maternal compassion:
“I am the merciful Mother, the Mother of all of you who live united in this land, and of all mankind, of all those who love me, of those who cry to me, of those who seek me, of those who have confidence in me. Here I will hear their weeping, their sorrow, and will remedy and alleviate their suffering, necessities, and misfortunes.”
By 1541, just ten years after the apparitions, there were ten million Indians who had been converted from paganism. Before Our Lady’s coming the missionaries were able to pour the saving waters of Baptism upon the heads of only one million natives, and most of these were orphaned children, victims of war, whom the loving missionaries had adopted and educated. Such a mass conversion was an unprecedented phenomenon, the likes of which had never been witnessed in any country of the world.
How much our nation still needs her message of compassion! Let us together pray for the assistance and protection of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Her face radiates the very light of God, while her example reveals authentic femininity. She shows unparalleled compassion to the poor and defenseless, but unyielding power and triumph over the evil one and his cohorts.



Thursday, January 18, 2018

Life without struggle

To live without faith,
without a patrimony to defend,
without a steady struggle for truth,
that is not living, but existing.

Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassatti