Catholic Culture Update for the week beginning October 27th, 2013
Quote to carry in your heart for the week.
“The Lord is near to the broken-hearted.” Psalm 34
October 27th is the Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time. “One of the most frequent objections I heard to the new translation of the Roman Missal concerned the re-insertion into the Penitential Act of the phrase, “through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault.” “Who do they think we are?” the objectors grumbled. The short answer is ‘sinners.’ “I have greatly sinned, in my thoughts and in my words, in what I have done and what I have failed to do.” Look around our world: there’s lots of evidence of human sinfulness. Each of us knows that sometimes it’s my fault; sometimes it’s our fault; and sometimes it’s not our fault, but we are all in it together. We all bear the consequences of each other’s sins, whether the ‘other’ is perpetrating ethnic cleansing on the other side of the world, or abusing a child or spouse in the apartment down the hall, or tweeting the latest gossip, or looking the other way when we recognize the face of Christ in one of the least. “God, I thank you that I am not like other people.” The problem with this stance is that I am like other people. I might wish I weren’t, but the truth is, we’re all sinners. We tell this truth at the beginning of our celebration and we tell another, bigger truth: God in Christ has offered mercy to all of us. In whatever words, that’s worth celebrating.” Bernadette Gasslein, October Living with Christ, page 125 Jesus, help me to be balanced in my sense of sinfulness, in what I have done and in what I have failed to do. Remind me of the grace that confession offers. Do a brief examination of conscience today. Consider receiving the Church’s gift of healing, that is, the sacrament of reconciliation.
October 28th is the memorial of Sts. Simon and Jude, Apostles. “These two apostles of Jesus are honoured on the same day. St. Simon was called “the zealous one” because he had so much devotion to the Jewish law. Once he had been called by the Lord to be an apostle, he gave his heart and his energy to preaching the Gospel. With the other apostles, he received the Holy Spirit on the first Pentecost. Then it is believed that he went to Egypt to preach the faith. Afterward, he went to Persia with the apostle St. Jude, and the two of them were martyred there. St. Jude is sometimes called Thaddeus, which means “the brave one.” He is known for the question he asked the Lord at the Last Supper. Jesus had said: “Whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him.” And St. Jude wanted to Know: “Lord, how is it that you are about to reveal yourself to us and not to the world?” Jesus gave him the answer: “Whoever loves me will keep by word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him” (Jn 14:23). St. Jude is sometimes called the saint of “desperate or impossible cases.” People pray to him when things seem hopeless. Often God answers their prayers through the intercession of this beloved apostle. Sts. Simon and Jude, show us how to accept ourselves and use our gifts to help spread Jesus’ message.” Saints for Young Readers for Every Day v.2, page 214-215. Show your courage in a zealous way today…that way you can honour both saints.
October 31st is the eve of All Saints Day or Hallowed Eve. In the Jewish tradition the day begins at sundown. Our Christian tradition developed from the Jewish way of life. We celebrate the eve of special feast days, like Christmas eve, New Year’s eve and the Saturday night vigil at Easter. Hallowe’en stands for another one of these eves. It is the eve of All Saints Day so it was called a Hallowed or Holy Eve. Shortened it becomes Hallowe’en. Loving God, we know that every day is holy but this night is especially holy as we anticipate All Saints Day. Help us to want to become your saints.
Try to do an act of kindness to exercise your saintliness today.
November 1st is the feast of All Saints. “On this day, we remember all the men, women, and children who followed Christ faithfully and heroically during their lives and who now enjoy the presence of God in heaven. Some saints have been singled out for their own feast day. The Church offers their witness of heroic, joyful lives for Jesus. But there aren’t enough days of the year to fit all the countless saints who walked through this life witnessing to Jesus. Some kept close to the Lord all their lives. Others found him along the way. Some led good lives without major difficulties. Others made big mistakes, but found the Lord on the road of repentance and genuine sorrow. They made it! And we ask them to intercede for us so that we will live holy lives, too, and reach our heavenly homeland. We celebrate their journey that lead to eternal happiness with God. We celebrate our own family members, relatives, neighbours, and friends whom we believe to be in heaven.” Saints for Young Readers for Every Day v.2, page 221. Saints of God abiding in the arms of mercy, pray for us. Who is the holiest person you know? Thank them for being a witness to you!
November 2nd is the feast of All Souls. “This feast day is one of the most loving celebrations in the Church’s liturgy. It is the day that we especially remember all the faithful departed – those who have passed from this life into the next. We don’t know how long a particular individual spends in purgatory. [A time of preparation before we meet God face to face.] However, we do know that purgatory is real. Today we stop to remember all who have died. We especially pray for our own ancestors, relatives, and friends who have died. We pray for those who made sacrifices for us. We pray for those who prayed for us while they were on this earth. We pray for the most forgotten souls. We pray for those who had great responsibilities while they were on earth. We think of those holy souls in purgatory and we realize that they are saved. Now they wait, being purified [being made ready], until the moment when they can be with God, face to face.” Saints for Young Readers for Every Day v.2, page 222-223. Eternal rest, grant to them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen+ Tie a string to one finger and every time you see it, pray a Hail Mary that a holy Soul might be admitted to heaven.
Serving in the Light of Christ – a quote for the week
“the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve” Mk 10:45
Equity and Inclusive Education – The Power of Targeted Interventions
“Gender Specific Strategies for Boys Schools often perpetuate the status quo by assuming that ‘boys will be boys,’ that they will not be interested in reading and writing. Preconceived notions that boys will not succeed in reading and writing, nor enjoy school need to be eradicated. We cannot lower expectations based on common assumptions about boys. Myhill and Jones (2006) point out that even at a very young age, students understand that teachers treat boys and girls differently. To improve boys’ achievement in literacy, teachers need to differentiate their instructional practices. …Not all boys are interested in the same things not do they all learn in the same manner. It is, therefore, important – as it is with all students – to disaggregate achievement data to determine which boys are struggling and in which specific areas. …Believing that boys can achieve in literacy at high levels, differentiating our approach, and engaging them in relevant learning experiences can make a difference.” Breaking Barriers: Excellence and Equity for All page 130-131
A Teaching from the Catholic Book of Days
“TRICK OR TREAT, IT’s HALLOWEEN
Halloween. Most everyone knows where the word came from. It derives from All Hallows Eve, the name given to the vigil of Hallowman, which we now know as All Saints’ Day. Historically, though, Halloween is a combination of pagan holiday and Christian holy-day vigil. The Romans celebrated the day as the festival of Pomona, goddess of gardens, and they dipped into stores being laid away for winter for one last feast. Nuts were roasted, and apples were plunked into tubs of water for the sport of apple-ducking. Ducking for apples was long wildly popular, and in places far removed from Rome. In medieval England everyone bobbed for apples on Halloween, and the custom crossed the waters into the New World. The ancient Celts, on the other hand, called this day “Samhain” or “end of summer,” and they observed it as the end of the growing season. That sounds innocent enough, except it is from those same Celts that many of the scary and spooky customs of Halloween derive. For the Celts harboured the Druidic belief that on October 31 Saman, lord of death, brought together all the wicked who had died within the past twelve months and been condemned to inhabit the bodies of animals. Thus the Celtic night echoed with the terrible sounds of keeners and screechers, and for protection people lit fires atop hills to keep the ghosts away. The practice of dressing up as a ghost is a carry-over from those times. So is the practice of treating those who knock on one’s door. Better to treat than a trick, was the prevailing wisdom. In Scotland and Wales, Halloween bonfires were lit well into this century. The custom was to place in the fire’s dying embers as many small stones as there were people present. A check was made in the morning, and if any of the stones had been displaced, it was believed the person represented by the stone would be dead within the year. Chilly stuff, but the stuff of All Hallows Eve.” +John Deedy
28 Different Ways to Pray
“As Jesus taught us by His word and example, daily prayer is essential for all Christians. Our individual prayer life follows the rhythm of our daily life. ……Way #25 Fasting as Prayer
Fasting is the conscious decision to forego food during a specific period of time for religious reasons. Fasting was known in most ancient societies and throughout most of the world religions. Generally, fasting is done for one of three reasons: + pleading for God’s help in battle or in times of natural disasters; + purifying oneself before a major decision or important event in life; + showing humility and a penitential spirit before God. In times of calamity, people fast to show their dependency on, and faithfulness to, God. Thus, in Jonah 3:7-8, the king of Assyria decrees, “Neither [human] nor beast, neither cattle nor sheep, shall taste anything; they shall not eat, nor shall they drink water.” In the face of a terrible plague of locusts, the prophet Joel cries out, “Proclaim a fast; call an assembly. Gather the elders, all who dwell in the land, into the house of the LORD, your God, and cry to the LORD” (Joel 1:14). Fasting also plays a significant role in the Bible when mourning those who have died (e.g., 1Sam 31:13).” Paulist Press page 130. Can you fast from candy this week until Thursday evening? Try, it may help you to enjoy the treats more!
Twenty-first Century Education
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=KZYYGGNX&utm_source > Reverse Thinking – Cool Palindrome! > Inspirational Video – 1.52 min. Without God as our focus, our perception on life can be clouded, confusing and often misguided. Sometimes…all we need to do is reverse our thinking.
http://catechistsjourney.loyolapress.com/ Joe Paprocki is a seasoned catechist and his website offers many simple and very helpful tips for the Catechist’s journey
http://infocopa.com/capsules-en.html > Bullying Prevention> Nurturing Kindness and Empathy > 1 min video with a parent and a teacher guide
www.parentingscience.com/teaching-empathy-tips.html > Teaching Empathy: Evidence Based Tips for Fostering Empathy in Children
www.tolerance.org/lesson/developing-empathy > Developing Empathy
www.CARFLEO.org > best kept secret for religious education teachers of every grade
130 Fun Facts from God’s Wonder-Filled WORLD by Bernadette McCarver Snyder
“What is the Softest Metal?
You usually think of metal as being very hard – like the motor of a car or a bulldozer or an iron bar, but can you guess what is the softest metal? It’s gold. Now if you’ve seen a good ring or a gold coin, it looks pretty hard – and it is – but gold is softer and more bendable than OTHER metals. It is so “soft,” it is usually mixed with a small bit of a “harder” metal like copper or nickel before it’s shaped into jewelry or coins. And did you know gold can be melted and it can be beaten until it is only four-thousands of an inch thick (about as thick as a hair!)? This “soft” metal has always been considered something very special and valuable – so special that gold was one of the gifts the Wise Men brought to the Baby Jesus. If you had a chance to bring a special gift to Jesus, what gift would you choose?” Page 52
WHAT’S YOUR CATHOLIC IQ? by Page McKean Zyromski
CATHOLIC Who Wants to be A Millionaire? – Who says teaching religion can’t be fun?
1. When there is a wedding in the Catholic Church, the sacrament celebrated is called C. Matrimony
2. When we go into church, we make the Sign of the Cross with water from the holy water font
A. to remind us of our Baptism
3. When we receive Communion, the Eucharistic minister say, “Body of Christ” or “Blood of Christ.”
We respond by saying B. “Amen”
4. Holy Orders is a sacrament for B. priests, bishops and deacons
5. After we have told our sins to the priest in Confession, we need to say A. a good Act of Contrition
As we approach All Saints Day let’s check our knowledge about the saints.
1. St. Peter was a
A. fisherman B. tentmaker C. weaver D. electrician
2. St. Patrick is the patron saint of
A. Italy B. Ireland C. Japan D. Mexico
3. The patron saint for finding things that have been lost is
A. St. Martin de Porres C. St. Anthony of Padua
B. St. Hedwig D. St. Thomas Aquinas
4. The first Native American to be canonized a saint is
A. Kateri Tekakwitha B. Geronimo C. Chief Red Cloud D. Apache Dan
5. The saint who followed what she called “The Little Way” to holiness is
A. St. Agnes C. St. Therese of Lisieux
B. St. Teresa of Avila D. St. Elizabeth of Hungary
Bonus question – Who is the most recent Canadian male to be canonized?
Weird Facts – how many people will read this far down the email…? Are you one who will?
“There are 336 dimples on a regulation golf ball.” Huh! 35 Weird Facts You Never Heard Of