September 27, 2013

Letters to the Editor

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First Saturday Devotion to Blessed Mother will conquer evil, restore God’s peace in the world

One of the greatest blessings God bestowed on the world is his Blessed Mother.

Mary is perfect in every way—full of grace, completely obedient to God and his divine will, a pure model of humility and love, and necessary for salvation.

Jesus honored Mary by being obedient to her. At the wedding at Cana, Jesus was not ready for his public ministry to begin, yet Jesus obeyed Mary and changed water into wine. We are all called to imitate Christ, including obedience to his Blessed Mother.

In 1917, Mary appeared to three children in Fatima. During her apparitions, Mary asked each of us to pray the daily rosary in reparation for sinners and to make the First Saturday Devotion in order to bring about world peace.

To make the First Saturday Devotion:

  • On the first Saturday of five consecutive months, one must:
    • 1) go to confession within eight days before or after the first Saturday of the month;
    • 2) receive holy Communion;
    • 3) recite five decades of the rosary;
    • 4) keep Mary company for 15 additional minutes while meditating on the mysteries of the rosary;
    • 5) all with the intention of making reparation for the offenses made against Mary’s Immaculate Heart.

Why then, do so many Catholics ignore Mary’s requests? Mary plays a vital role in the salvation of souls, including ours.

If God gave us the cure for cancer, wouldn’t we use it? Mary has given us the cure for world violence, hatred and the destruction of souls. We are being called to join Mary’s army, united in faith.

The power of the holy rosary and the First Saturday Devotion will conquer evil and restore God’s peace in the world. That is Mary’s promise. So let’s answer Mary’s requests, and join her army to bring about world peace. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us!

- Rhonda Branham | Bloomington

There is no greater relationship with Christ Jesus than receiving the Eucharist

I often hear a lot of Pentecostals speak of their “relationship” with Jesus, and contend that we don’t need religion; we need a relationship with Christ Jesus.

I suspect they refer to Catholicism as a set of religious rules, expectations, religious bondage, etc. They contend that Christianity is not a religion, but rather a relationship.

For Catholics, our religion is the most personal relationship with God through his Son, Jesus Christ. Our Church teachings and devotions and practices are ways we find to worship him and relate closer to him. To argue that Christianity is not a religion or, worse, that religion is evil and something to be avoided is both nonsensical and unbiblical. The Bible tells us that Christianity is the true, pure religion (Jas 1:27).

True practicing Catholics, unlike the many nominal Catholics who end up leaving the Church because they never really knew the Church, clearly have an intimate connection and always growing relationship with Jesus Christ and, accordingly, God the Father.

But we have grown in that relationship due to our religion which teaches us how to grow closer through prayer, adoration, the rosary, confession, Bible study, marriage, devotions to the saints, fasting, tithing, reverential postures, sacramentals, the Mass, etc. All those things non-Catholics see as things taking away from Jesus Christ are all and everything in the life of the Church, and are to have a deeper relationship with him.

Whenever I hear this comparison between relationship and religion, I think that the person saying it is either merely a parrot repeating something without thinking, or really doesn’t have much insight to their own religion, let alone that of the Catholic Church.

There is no greater personal relationship with Christ Jesus than receiving his body, blood and divinity in the holy Eucharist.

- Kirth N. Roach

Order of Carmelite Discalced Secular Indianapolis

Take the time to continue praying for a lasting peace and end to violence in our world

Did anyone notice that after the weekend of prayer and fasting for peace as requested by Pope Francis and Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin on Sept. 7 that the bombs were not dropped on Syria, and Russia and the U.S. were talking to each other about the end of chemical warfare?

Let’s not forget the power of prayer and fasting, so highly recommended by Christ, when we think we can’t make a difference.

It is almost as if we are afraid to admit or hope that our faithfulness in fasting, prayer and adoration that weekend made the difference, but it did! Thank you to our spiritual leaders and to God! May we all continue to pray for a peaceful solution to all the violence in this world.

Thank you for all who participated in this very holy devotion. How about a few prayers of thanksgiving now—and continue praying for a lasting peace?

- Mary Ann Seufert, Indianapolis

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