29 April 2005

Pope Benedict XVI

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Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI

"The fact that the Lord knows how to work and to act even with inadequate instruments comforts me, and above all I entrust myself to your prayers."

With those words, the newly elected 265th Pope greeted the world from St. Peter's Basilica. Many people in the media predicted Cardinal Ratzinger's election. They failed, however, to foresee the kind, pastoral side of "God's Rottweiler." The Pope wasted no time setting forward his "program of governance." He told us that his plan is not to do his own will, but to listen to the will of God. In his inaugural Mass, he focused his homily on the two symbols of his ministry.

The pallium and the fisherman's ring are the "two liturgical symbols which represent the inauguration of the Petrine Ministry." The pallium is a mantle made out of wool. It can represent the sick and weak sheep being placed over the shoulder of the shepherd. The Holy Father, in light of his role as successor of St. Peter, saw his mission as following Christ's command to the first Pope: "Feed my sheep." He noted that a shepherd must love and take care of his sheep.

The fisherman's ring again represents his predecessor, St. Peter, and the Pope's Petrine Ministry. Christ told the apostles that they would become "fishers of men." The Church, in continuing this mission, works "to win men and women over to the Gospel." Not only do the non-believers need to be drawn in, but also those in the Church that have gone astray. The Holy Father will work to bring all Catholics, and all Christians too, into the fullness of the Faith.

He closed his homily by recounting Pope John Paul II's words when he was elected. "Do not be afraid! Open wide the doors for Christ!" We must all open our hearts to Christ. Only then will we find true life. To all that would say that this Pope lacks the pastoral care of his predecessor, this stirring message flatly denies this idea. I believe that His Holiness will be a true pastor, a shepherd for the Church. Make no mistake, he will not present a watered down message. Rather, he will lovingly preach the Truth that is Christ. His rod may come down on the dissenters, but his shoulders will carry those same lost sheep. Thank God for Pope Benedict XVI.

09 April 2005

Purgatory

Okay, purgatory is probably one of the most misunderstood, least researched teachings of the Church by its opponents. What I had heard of purgatory before hearing the truth, was totally false and not supported by one iota of evidence. Some of those myths are:
  • The Catholic Church invented the doctrine in the 1500's as a source of income.
  • There is no Scriptural proof for purgatory.
  • The doctrine belittles Christ's sacrifice on the cross.

If these myths were true, the Catholic Church would be in huge trouble! However, the Church can only teach true doctrine, thanks to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. To a Catholic, that is enough to know that it is sound doctrine. Though for Protestant Christians, these accusations must be investigated and put to rest. So I researched the history of the doctrine, what early members of the Church said about it, and if there was any Biblical support for it.

I put together the results of my research into a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation. All the myths are debunked, the questions are answered, and there are even some links to more information. You can get the slide show here: http://www.geocities.com/catholicboy930/Purgatory.ppt

If you do not have Microsoft PowerPoint, you can download, for free, the PowerPoint Viewer. That file is at Microsoft's website: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=428d5727-43ab-4f24-90b7-a94784af71a4&displaylang=en

I hope the slide show is informative and helpful. If you have any other questions, e-mail me at CatholicBoy930@yahoo.com or leave a comment.

God bless,
Jon

Opening Day

Welcome to my site.
Welcome to my site, Testimonium perhibeam veritati. This is a Latin phrase from John 18:37. Jesus, beaten and bruised, appears before Pontius Pilate. Those that hand Him over to Pilate accuse Him of calling Himself the King of the Jews. Pilate asks Christ if he is indeed a king and gets this answer: "For this was I born, and for this came I into the world; that I should give testimony to the truth."
The purpose of this site is to continue in Christ's mission: giving testimony to the truth. So what is the truth? Jesus is the Truth. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Now Christ promised that He would be with His church until the end of time. The Holy Spirit abides in the Church, and therefore, the Truth is in the Church. Conversely, the Church is Truth.
This site is dedicated to Jesus Christ and to the Blessed Virgin Mary, in memory of His Holiness Pope John Paul II (The Great). May God be pleased with it.