“The Church's great liturgical tradition teaches us that fruitful participation in the liturgy requires that one be personally conformed to the mystery being celebrated… Otherwise, however carefully planned and executed our liturgies may be, they would risk falling into a certain ritualism. Hence the need to provide an education in eucharistic faith capable of enabling the faithful to live personally what they celebrate.” (Pope Benedict XVI, SACRAMENTUM CARITATIS, 64)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Catholic Culture

"And if the watchman see the sword coming, and sound not the trumpet: and the people look not to themselves, and the sword come, and cut off a soul from among them: he indeed is taken away in his iniquity, but I will require his blood at the hand of the watchman. 7 So thou, O son of man, I have made thee a watchman to the house of Israel: therefore thou shalt hear the word from my mouth, and shalt tell it them from me." (Ez 33:6-7)

I'd like to take this opportunity to put a plug in for a website that keeps delivering time and time again. For years, my homepage was CatholicCulture.org. It was a website that served as a clearinghouse for useful Catholic information, dealing in both current and timeless issues. Right as the page opened, we would see where we were on the liturgical calender, see the Collect from the mass, find headlines on news related to the Church, read solidly Catholic commentary, and have easy access to devotions, crafts, and recipes for the Domestic Church. They have an impressive library of documents and public domain publications to research just about anything Catholic.

This website has undergone some changes over the years, most particularly a merger with their then sister website, the Catholic World News. Some of the information takes some searching these days, but all the stuff is still there.

My homepage was changed recently to the Blogger Dashboard so that I can follow the better bloggers out there. But we are still a monthly financial contributor and visit their website often. I cannot recommend a better website out there for daily immersion in your Catholic faith.

Their main contributors, Dr. Jeff Mirus and Phil Lawler, speak their minds. They are very respectful and humble, yet they have to courage to offer their opinions on controversial matters, even as their enterprise depends on donations from readers and faithful dealings with the Bishops. A quick search of their documents shows that they take a skeptical view of Medjugorje, something certain to alienate a large portion of potential readers. They also won't shy away from reporting unflattering information that may hurt fundraising efforts of the USCCB's pet projects. If there is an alarm that needs to be raised, they will do their duty.

So please visit them often, and contribute if you like what you see. I'm sure in these current economic times, they could use the boost. Also, keep an eye on their blog. Just this morning, Lawler is offering a couple of interesting contributions of interest to all Catholics.

For instance, recall my post on education that had some unflattering characterizations of the current Health Care Reform debate. But with a Culture of Death administration and a Culture of Death congress pushing health care reform, why have the Bishops for the most part remained on the sidelines? Mr. Lawler writes respectfully of the second Catholic contingent in this debate:
"This difference in perspectives, I think, is at the heart of the recent debate among Catholics over questions such as whether or not Catholic Charities should support health-care reform legislation. Some Catholics-- let's put the folks from Catholic Charities in this category-- have been working hard to enact health-care reform. Now the time is ripe, there's plenty of momentum behind the effort, and they're frustrated to see that the abortion issue is jeopardizing all the progress. That's understandable."
Also offered this morning is an important issue to ALWAYS keep in the forefront of our daily lives. Lawler reminds us of the persecution of the Church in India, a nation in which the United States has taken a growing economic interest(my emphasis in bold):

"Over the years we have carried literally hundreds of stories about the sufferings of Christians in India-- as well as the trials that our Christians brethren face in other countries. (See today's Feature about the latest fervent pleas by Vietnamese Catholics for an end to government oppression.) But I'm sorry to say that these stories attract fewer readers than most other CWN headlines. That's a shame-- literally-- because Alex Kannattumadom is right. Wherever Christians are suffering for the faith, they deserve our support.

Maybe there isn't much that we can do to help our fellow Catholics living thousands of miles away, apart from praying for them. But prayer is the most important step that we could take to preserve their hope and their courage. And the knowledge that we are praying for them should bolster their morale."

By all means, pay close attention to what's going on at Catholic Culture. I can attest that these guys will keep you better informed Catholics.

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