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Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Kim Phuc Phan Thi and others, 1972. Her story of forgiveness is included in the eBook, "Why Forgive?"

Forgiveness. In the past week I've reviewed this topic and am beginning to see the ways that God's grace provides this blessing. The book "Why Forgive?" is now a free ebook. Get it! It can illustrate the many ways that allowing forgiveness can help heal our brothers and sisters, as well as our own hearts.

Have I ever been wronged? Have I ever done a wrong? I need not ask this question since I am human and a sinner. The better question is, how have I responded to the challenge that forgiveness makes? I am blessed by the many who have gone before me and forged the way. The first was Jesus Christ himself who forgave us and showed us the way. The Lord's Prayer mentions forgiveness. In Matthew 18:21-22, Jesus explains forgiveness when Peter asked about this:

21 Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times.

My audio blog for this week discusses forgiveness in a hopefully entertaining format. I invite you to link up to the
live shoutcast or listen to the archive (available about 24 hrs after). Follow the link below. God bless you! Thank God He has forgiven us and may we follow Christ's teaching and allow the grace of forgiveness to enter our hearts and be an example to others. Amen.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

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In Matthew 16:21-27, Jesus rebukes Peter for his fear of Jesus' passion and suffering, and stated: "whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it."

This bold statement still is applicable today. Following Christ is different now than in the age of antiquity, but still fraught with hazards and opportunities to lose one's life. For example, we have riches unimaginable to the inhabitants of Jerusalem in Jesus' time; surplus food; surplus leisure time, and freedom from direct bodily threats and uncontrolled disease (for the most part). Where we stumble is exactly here: we have become sincerely entitled, and often not thankful. Our riches flow from God's blessing and we dress in them with delight as to don a fur coat in a snowstorm.

Despite this illustration, there is the paradox that Christ foresaw: unsaved souls, people who do go without, people who have been discarded by their society for any number of reasons. Are we willing to minister to them? Are we willing to die to our comfortable lives and provide the love and concern as well as simple human respect that they require?

Recently I have seen a disturbing segment of society in great need: those who have been chemically dependent. Young people who display signs of intellectual damage, death of spirit. This should be the prime of their lives physically and mentally. They have wisdom to accumulate. Who will mentor them? Who can see the hope that could well up and begin to grow like the mustard seed? One thing we can know: Christ will be with us on this road and will bless us along the way. I feel that profoundly. I know I can start today to follow this calling; Jesus asks us to walk with him. Come along.

Try my Thursday Catholic Hour for live streaming audio content of interest to Catholics, Christians, and all who seek God and fellowship, weekly at 7:00 PM Eastern Standard Time (archive of current program available 24 hrs/ 7 days on website link above).

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Upon this rock

Upon this rock

The readings today include Matthew 16:13-20. Jesus is revealed, by the Father, as Lord. He instructs the apostles not to tell anyone of this. He stated "I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church."

What happened after Christ's crucifixion, death and resurrection are well documented in the gospels. However, exactly how the church was built, by Peter, requires some looking into to get more information. The Acts of the Apostles has much of this information. Peter did not work alone, but much of the spread of the good news came through Paul and other Evangelists, and went on under the duress of Roman persecution, and for many centuries. In addition to the gospel, historians look to contemporaneous documents from which to glean information to fill in the blanks.

God in his omniscience most likely could foresee what the future of the church would be. His creation, mankind, pushed forward into many lands and ultimately spread the gospel throughout the Western and New Worlds, and indeed into all the continents. But there has been division, greater and less manifestations of what the Church would become, and times when man has faltered.

What may be the most inspiring is the fact that Jesus' church, designated to be built upon the rock of Peter the disciple by Christ himself, has withstood over 2,000 years of peace, war, light and darkness, to get where we are today. I am glad to be a Catholic and a Christian, and am humbled by the numbers of faithful throughout the world. Peter was not perfect, but lived out his mission and allowed God to use him to spread the good news and save the souls of all who would choose to accept his Word. We are all called, like Peter, to be a rock of God's work in the world. Will we respond with an astounding YES?

Try Thursday Catholic Hour for live streaming audio content of interest to Catholics, Christians, and all who seek God and fellowship, weekly at 7:00 PM Eastern Standard Time

Friday, August 19, 2011



I admit I am much more comfortable when I have conformed to the expectations of my employer, family, and friends. It's what we all do, unthinkingly. But what about when it is necessary to instigate a change? What do we do then and how do we know what the best thing to do is?

Since starting an audio blog this conflict has come up a few times. I'm not a theologian. I don't have any experience as a broadcaster and no audio production experience. Also I am not able to do much quality control, such as editing, because it is a live broadcast and I don't have any staff working with me on this.

There are several ways to ensure that what I'm doing is appropriate and constructive. One is to strive to include material that is relevant, timely, and thought provoking. I don't have to be didactic. Actual religious education is best served in an academic environment or church, taught by people in authority. Also always holding high respect for others is a universal value that can be upheld even in a unique venue like a webcast. Basing my discussions on objective writings, such as book reviews, bible readings, periodicals is a safe bet too.

I think an audio blog can be a great way to share information on the internet. I am not actually a pioneer in this respect, but it goes outside my usual comfort level since I am a private person. I feel that keeping my audio blog anonymous is appropriate at this time. Feel free to listen in on the live webcast on Thursdays at 7:00 (EST). Also I will provide a recording of the webcast on the site as well. May Jesus and the Holy Spirit guide me and entrust me with the discernment to provide a little inspiration to a weary care worn world. May my comfort level not guide all of my daily activities or prevent me from seeking the Lord in new ways that provide spiritual growth for me and possibly for others. Amen.

Thursday Catholic Hour Webcast

Sunday, August 7, 2011


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Walking on Water

These words have become often a cliche. Let us think about the original scenario, in which Jesus helped Peter who was sinking in the sea in a storm. He had been able to walk on the water with Jesus for a time, but then faltered.

Jesus helped Peter back up and admonished him for his lapse of faith. This recounting gives me reason to read other bible passages regarding faith. Jesus repeatedly speaks about the need and importance of faith. He told his disciples that if they had the faith the size of a mustard seed, "you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” Matthew 17:21

Faith is what Jesus said could allow great things to come forth. Faith in God. Faith that does not require proof of God, but rather love of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

However, faith that is blind has been criticized by philosophers. They state that we should use our God-given intellect to sharpen and test our belief, even that of our belief in God. This is part of theological education, as I understand it. However, for the common people, people such as myself still in the infancy of their theological inquiry, strong faith is still possible, still justifiable. This is because of my early childhood indoctrination in the Catholic Church. The schools, the churches, and most of all my parents, taught about the good news of Jesus Christ. They did not attempt to teach me the rigors of logic. I heard the telling of the birth of Jesus. At other times I heard the readings from the Old Testament, and of the activities of Jesus, the miracles he performed. I received the sacraments, first that of Baptism, then Communion. Later I was confirmed, and then married. I witnessed the sacramental events of my siblings, and later of my own children.

Most recently, I have been impressed with the value of intentional Christianity. In this mode of living, one DOES use rational inquiry, self education, and fellowship with other Christians to further one's faith. Sadly, some of the sacramental events in my life were somewhat automatic. They occurred according to a timetable. With intentional Christianity in the Catholic Church, I intend to move forward, deliberately. I am going to have stronger faith because I am going to live my faith. The greatest proof, or witness of the truth of Jesus, the Father, and the Holy Spirit, has been my actual living among the faithful. I pray that the Holy Spirit continues to dwell among God's people. The love of Jesus Christ shines now more than ever, I believe. May I be an instrument of God's will and act as His humble servant. May those in pain or impoverishment find healing and, by witnessing the faith of their brethren, find the comfort and wealth of faith of their own. Amen.

Please join me Thursday 7/11/2011 for the first weekly Catholic Evangelist's Hour. This is a live broadcast so you will want to get online at 7:00 EST on Thursday night. God bless you!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Loaves and fishes

Loaves and fishes

The theme of multiplication is carried forward this week, from Matthew 13 regarding the mustard seed, to Sunday 7/31/2011's reading in Mtt 14 of Jesus' miracle of the loaves and fishes. According to the gospel, only 5 loaves and 2 fishes were multiplied sufficiently to feed 5000 people. After they ate, 12 wicker baskets were filled with the fragments of loaves left over. This was a miracle that hits home where we all have a soft spot: in our stomachs. Even the menu sounds acceptable, if not delicious. They didn't say how the fish were cooked. Typical of many gospel stories, it is conspicuously unembellished by such details. All who witnessed this event must have been moved, must have believed that Jesus could work magic. At that time in the long ago past, people had to communicate from word of mouth, one to another. That is where the embellishment most likely was rampant!

I think this gospel underscores the responsiveness of God to our needs, especially our most basic, that of food. Jesus did not charge for the food. He did not dispel the crowd to return home to buy their own food. Instead, he encouraged them to linger with him (even in the number that had amassed), to break bread, and to have a little fellowship. I am convinced, as I'm sure my Christian brothers and sisters could testify, that God wants us to have fellowship and fulfill this human need that is just as important as bread and fish themselves. That nourishes our body mind and spirit and multiplies in its benefits.

Let us Lord, break bread together and encourage each other regularly. Let us conduct ourselves with dignity and humility, and show abundant thanks for the blessings you bestow on us each day. In Christ's name, Amen.

Thank you for following my blog. Starting Thursday, August 11, 2011 I will have a live internet broadcast available at 7:00 pm, EST, with the following link (that will only be live for 1 hour before and also during the broadcast):

Thursday Catholic Evangelism Hour

When the link is live (next Thursday the 11th), it will reference the live audio feed from my home studio in Louisville, KY. I hope to include a lot of interesting material taken from Catholic authorities in scripture, The New Evangelism, the Gospel, and local leaders in this exciting movement. I was able to get the software to broadcast this free of charge, by agreeing to post the following link to the source for the software:

NCS software

When you get a chance, look at what NCS is up to (in Australia, their home country) in low cost, high utility software. God bless you all.