Brush Up On: Rosary, Confession, Act Of Contrition

April 1, 2009
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Requiescat In Pace, Karen Carpenter

March 2, 2009

No one who sings the Ave so beautifully should be forgotten in death. Say one Hail Mary for Karen.


Marian Prayer Of Saint Gregory Of Narek (A.D. 1010)

November 12, 2008
MARIAN PRAYER OF SAINT GREGORY OF NAREK (A.D. 1010)

Assist me by the wings of your prayers,
O you who are called the Mother of the living,
so that on my exit from this valley of tears
I may be able to advance without torment
to the dwelling of life
that has been prepared for us
to lighten the end of a life burdened by my iniquity.

Healer of the sorrows of Eve,
change my day of anguish into a feast of gladness.
Be my Advocate,
ask and supplicate.
For as I believe in your inexpressible purity,
so do I also believe in
the good reception that is given to your word.

O you who are blessed among women,
help me with your tears
for I am in danger.
Bend the knee to obtain my reconciliation,
O Mother of God.

Be solicitous for me for I am miserable, Read the rest of this entry »


Mary, Mother of God?

April 16, 2008


Q. Does the title Mary the Mother of God mean that she existed before God ?
A. Absolutely not. She is fully human. During the early centuries a heresy arose concerning the nature of Jesus Christ. This heresy claimed that Jesus was not divine but only a human being. So, Christians coined the term “Mary, Mother of God” as a pithy way of affirming the authentic Christian doctrine that Jesus was both fully God and fully human. Logically, if Mary gave birth to Jesus, and if Jesus is God, then Mary is the mother of God.

Q. Do Catholics worship Mary?
A. Absolutely not. Catholics worship God alone. The Church condemns the worship of Mary. So, anyone who worshipped Mary would be a heretic.

Q. Then why do Catholics kneel and pray in front of pictures and statues of Mary?
A. We are merely asking Mary to join her prayers to
ours as we make our request to God. We are simply
asking Mary, as a member of the body of Christ, to
pray for us.

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The Story of a Shrine and of a Conversion (Part 2)

April 6, 2008

THE POWER OF THE WORD OF GOD
At the end of the day, Ahmad looked at me and said: “You know, I feel peace with you.”

I said: “I did not even talk to you. You don’t even know me, how did you feel peace with me?”

He said: “I don’t know, but I feel peace with you.”

Then, Ahmad opened his heart and told me about an amazing experience he had had 3 years ago. He said, “I was working on the Bobcat removing rubbles. I noticed a book over there. So, I turned off the Bobcat and walked towards the rubbles. I took the book in my hand, removed the dust and opened it. When I read a passage, I felt a power entered into my body. Since then, I have been liberated from a vice I had been struggling with.”

I said: “Wow, what is that book?”

He said: “The Bible.”

I said: “OK, I have a Bible in my car. Would you like to read a passage from it?”

He said: “Yes, sure.”

I said: “OK, take the book. Pray first. Then, open it and the passage that comes I will read it for you.”

Ahmad took the Bible, prayed and opened the Gospel on the second letter to the Corinthians 5:17-19.

I read: “So whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come. And all this is from God, who has reconciled us to himself through Christ and given us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting their trespasses against them and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.”

I was reading this passage, and Ahmad began to cry. He sobbed. Then, he spontaneously confessed all the sins he had done in his life. I left this man purified from his old sins and I went back to my church.
That was the first day.

THE POWER OF CONFESSION
On Thursday March 8, 2007, I took Ahmad from his apartment to the Shrine project. He was in complete silence. He couldn’t work a lot because the Bobcat had a few problems. Read the rest of this entry »


The Story Of A Shrine And Of A Conversion (Part 1)

April 5, 2008

A DESIRE IN MY HEART
On Christmas 2006, I had a great desire in my heart to find a place somewhere on the mountain of Lebanon, where I can bring the Blessed Sacrament and gather all people in the cold to worship the Lord.

So I went up to the mountain. There was a huge cross built in 1932. I said “Maybe we can build a tent and worship the Lord in the cold next Christmas 2007.” But the property was not for the church. It was for the nuns. So I went and met the general superior and told her about my desire: “Can we do this next Christmas?” She looked at me and said: “We will think about it.” I understood that she drove me away in a diplomatic way.

A GREAT DISCOVERY
I went to the township and asked: “What do we own here as a church.”

So they showed me maps. I looked at them and was surprised and shocked when I found out that we have a property on the mountain not too far from the Cross. So, overwhelmed with joy, I went immediately to the mountain. I entered a forest that had been neglected for decades because of the wars and turmoil in the Chouf region. And the vision began to form in my mind: “OK, I will build a way, like the way of the cross, that leads to a grotto. But where is that grotto?” So I told two of my friends to come with me and try to find out where is that place of worship. We went on January 9, 2007. My friends went in a direction. I went in a different direction. I climbed a small hill filled with bushes and thorns. So, I got scars everywhere. Then, suddenly, I discovered natural rocks hidden behind the bushes. So, I cried out in a loud voice: “George, George, I found it. I found the place.” “Where are you?” George asked. “I am here. Come and see.” My friends arrived and saw the natural rocks and said: “Wow, this is the place.”

SOME OBSTACLES
I brought an excavation machine and removed the small hill filled with bushes. We found hundreds of stones beneath the hill. So, we kept them aside. Now, the news reached religious authorities that Fr. Antonio is building A WONDER LAND or A WALT DISNEY LAND on the mountain. So they sent me a priest to check what I was doing. The priest arrived, put his hand on his forehead and said: “What are you doing? This is a big project? It will cost you more than 50,000$.”

I said: “Please, just give me your blessing and let me work.”

He said: “You can’t do this.”

I said: “Tell the general superior to give me his blessing. That’s all I need.”

He said: “Listen, you cannot take one penny from the church, not even from your personal pocket. You cannot work with debts and you cannot make advertisements.”
I said: “OK. I won’t do these things. Whatever Our Mother Mary sends me, I will put it here. If she doesn’t send anything, I won’t do anything.”

He said: “OK, work in silence.” Read the rest of this entry »