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Liturgy

Matrimony Does Not Mean Legal Roommates

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Often today if a man and woman want to get married, they first live together to see if they would be a good fit. To a lot of people, it makes sense to see if you are “compatible” before marriage, but really the opposite is true.

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The Secret To Conversion

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The Church recently celebrated Pentecost, which is one of my favorite holy days of the year. Perhaps it’s because I was born around Pentecost, but the more likely reason is because I have a close relationship with the Holy Spirit.

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These Last Remaining Hours of May

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Amidst all the endless commentary in the aftermath of the atrocity that happened in my home town of Manchester, England, on Monday night the 22nd, and the appalling murder of the Coptic Christians on Friday on pilgrimage in Egypt, I could not help but wonder on, 100 years after the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima and her universal message of conversion and penance to save the world, how her Immaculate Heart must be in pain and sorrow over the events of the last weeks.

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Why?

WHY

Children have the remarkably annoying habit of interrogating us don’t they? They’re obsessed with the fundamental nature of things, why the world is the way it is, and how to logically connect it all together. The endless “why”? questions. It can be maddening at times. 

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Moana’s Journey Is Our Journey

Moana

Our kids are crazy for the Disney movie Moana right now. They sing the songs at the top of their lungs, quote the movie, and even pretend to be the different characters while they are playing with each other. And who can blame them? A funny chicken, catchy tunes, and a life-changing adventure make for a great story.

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A short Message

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Earlier this week the news of the Duke of Edinburgh deciding to step away from his public duties at the age of 96, made big headlines. One commentator said that on a personal level the Duke would really be baffled by all the fuss over it. After all he is 96! But more than that; there was one quote recalled about the Duke which really struck a chord with me.

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A Very Bitter Lent

A Very Bitter Lent

Dear Reader,

In September 2015 I was privileged to meet the Maronite Archbishop of Damascus Samir Nassar during the World Meeting of Families.

I was deeply moved by his accounts of the bitter suffering of the Syrian people during the relentless war, then almost 2 years ago.

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"Lest We Forget...!"

"Lest We Forget...!"

"Lest We Forget...!"

The phrase above is one we adopt and use year in year out to recall with gratitude and solemnity the countless war dead who sacrificed their lives to defend and preserve our freedoms
 

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Catholic "Jihad"

Catholic "Jihad"

We've all heard time and time again of so-called "jihad" concerning Islamic fundamentalism and its ideological links to tyrannical radical Islamic terror.  But "jihad" is really about declaring "war" on self - i.e. self-mortification; self-denial; self-control etc. in order, fundamentally to be a better person, to be a more rounded human being. Selfless, more compassionate and considerate and full of humility, which as CS Lewis wisely said, is not about "thinking less of oneself but thinking of oneself less."

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Epiphany!

Epiphany!

A very blessed, holy and peace-filled celebration of the Solemnity of the Epiphany to you this weekend.
In the last few days, I have been contemplating on how best to honour this holy feast by my attitude and actions.


And amidst all the routine annual "temptations" to make a 'to do' list of so-called New Year's resolutions [not that there's anything wrong with genuinely attempting to alter one's lifestyle for the better], I felt that perhaps first and foremost what is needed is an interior re-direction, or rather re-orientation to what one originally tries to focus on.

Deep down as I continue to ponder on the mystery of the Incarnation through the ongoing season of Christmastide, I know that it can only be the virtues of obedience, humility and above all gratitude as lived by the Blessed Virgin and St. Joseph during those first troubled and challenging days and weeks of the life of Christ, that I must fully resolve to emulate.

And to do this, not just every day but every hour, every waking moment. In short to try ever harder to live in the moment, the eternal now, with a Christ-like mind and attitude.

The other day I came across the following quote from St. Catherine of Siena which encapsulates what I have been sensing and what by God's grace I pray and hope to aspire to more and more:

“We ought to be convinced that every burden that is laid on us, from whatever source it might come, is given us out of love, not hatred. It is given for our good so that we may achieve the good for which we were created. We must understand that our burdens are no greater or smaller than time and that our time on earth is as small as the point of a needle."

So as we begin 2017, we are reminded again that we all have a limited amount of time and space to make a difference in the world for the better. To love and respect ourselves and others to such a degree of intensity that we know that God can truly make use and purpose of it according to His Holy Will.

Sounds easy, doesn't it?

Well, it is a simple truth but of course not easy to fulfill except in the case of a daily sanctification through prayer, meditation and sacrifice that it then grows outwardly from within us and it becomes easier or less burdensome for us to do.

As no doubt countless people now embrace a resolution to diet and exercise more [all good in itself] with the interior motto rattling around their heads; "no pain, no gain" - we can apply that simple truth to our interior, spiritual life too, indeed we must.

And the pain of course is to knowingly, consciously unite every daily struggle, especially the really tough ones to the cross of Jesus, confident in hope that He can bring it to fruition and purpose not just for our sake but for the good of others somehow, somewhere even if our efforts are not seen directly connected to the circles of our immediate influence.

January is also the month dedicated to the Holy Name of "Jesus" - the Name which saves, the Name which, when we use it properly in prayer, devotion and thought, can truly dispel evil and any thoughts of anxiety and despair that we might feel overwhelmed.

So, to conclude, as we mark the event at which Three Wise and Holy Kings had to physically bow their heads and no doubt their upper bodies in order to enter a cave/stable where the Holy Family was residing in Bethlehem to adore [and I like to think, on their knees] the Infant Christ, let us also renew our belief in and efforts to honour Him by bowing at the Holy Name of Jesus whenever it is said in worship and prayer [and if we ever hear it uttered in blasphemy, to make an internal supplication in reparation] so as to stir continuous thoughts of obedience, humility and above all gratitude in our souls.

Edmund Adamus

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