Thank You Sts. Mary, Raphael, Rita, & Thomas Aquinas!!!

May 22, 2010

Originally posted 5/20/2010.

Happy Feast Day of St. Rita of Cascia!

Glory to God in the highest! Thank you, Lord, for hearing the prayers of Sts. Mary, Raphael, Rita, and Thomas Aquinas. I was in an academic jam and I trusted in the intercession of the saints (I prayed successive novenas from A Treasury of Novenas to Mary the Mother of God, Raphael the Archangel, and Rita of Cascia; I also prayed the Rosary often) and the infinite mercy of God, and now I’ve got four out of my five grades for this semester back, and the average turned out to be higher than I expected and asked for! This is not merely the fruit of my weak efforts. This is God manifesting His boundless mercy on a wretched man like me who stands in most need of His healing, transforming forgiveness. St. Rita, I beg you, Patron Saint of the Impossible, to continue to intercede for me, a poor sinner, whenever I am in quandaries. My readers, I urge you in the strongest terms to pray to St. Rita in case of any needs, great or small. This exhortation is but one tiny part of my fulfillment of my promise to the holy stigmatist to “glorify [her] by making known [her] favor, and to bless [her] and sing [her] praises forever” [A Treasury of Novenas 254]! The same page of the book says:

O God, in Your infinite tenderness You have been pleased to regard the prayer of Your servant Rita, and to grant to her supplication that which is impossible to human foresight, skill, and effort, in reward for her compassionate love and firm reliance on Your promises.

Have pity on our adversities and comfort us in our calamities, that unbelievers may know that You are the recompense of the humble, the defense of the helpless, and the strength of those who trust in You. Grant this in the Name of Jesus the Lord.

God willing, I expect to reach my goal GPA this semester, pending notification of how I did in my fifth class.

Prayer is so powerful. The Liturgy of the Eucharist is the greatest prayer, and I thank you, Lord Jesus Christ, for letting partake of, though unworthy, Your Precious Body and Blood so many times since my incorporation into the Church of God which You have purchased with Your own Blood [Acts 20:28]. The Rosary and the novenas are so helpful and I beg you, dear readers, to pray novenas for any of your intentions. Thank you so much, St. Thomas Aquinas, for helping me to get an A in the class on your philosophy this semester. I love you and you are the prince of theologians! St. Raphael my patron saint, you are so great to me. O Blessed Ever-Virgin Mary, Mother of God and hope of sinners, you are the greatest of all, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, and I entrust myself and those I love to your all-powerful intercession before the Lord our God.

Holy, Holy, Holy Lord, God of power and might! Heaven and earth are full of Your glory! Hosanna in the highest! Blessed is he who comes in the Name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on all us poor sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.


The Protestant Mutilation of Sacred Scripture

May 22, 2010

Originally posted 5/11/2010.

From a recent paper of mine (“Reflections on the ‘Life and Letters of Paul’ Class”):

Many authoritative Church councils prior to the Reformation defined the same canon as the canon of Scripture defined by the Ecumenical Council of Trent in 1546; they include the 393 Synod of Hippo and three Carthaginian councils in the years 393, 397, and 419 (Reid). The canon of the Council of Trent is the same as the Canon of Pope St. Innocent I from the year 405, which was sanctioned by Pope Adrian I and, in 865, by Pope St. Nicholas I the Great (ibid.). I quickly found strong support for the Catholic view among the Fathers of the Church; we are bound to accept their unanimous consent on any matter of faith and morals, or we are forced to say that they, the best witnesses to the traditions handed down by the Apostles, were deceived en masse.

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St. Paul’s Rebuke of St. Peter

May 22, 2010

Originally posted 5/11/2010.

From a recent paper of mine (“Reflections on the ‘Life and Letters of Paul’ Class”):

The class handout “Peter and Barnabas’s ‘Hypocrisy’ (Gal 2:11–14)” prompted me to examine the implications of the “Antioch incident” for the primacy of St. Peter. St. Paul recounts the incident as follows:

But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood self-condemned; for until certain people came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But after they came, he drew back and kept himself separate for fear of the circumcision faction. And the other Jews joined him in this hypocrisy, so that even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy. But when I say that they were not acting consistently with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas before them all, “If you, though a Jew, live like a Gentile and not like a Jew, how can you compel the Gentiles to live like Jews?” (Galatians 2:11-14).

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Christ Is Creator, Not A Creature (St. Paul)

May 22, 2010

Originally posted 5/12/2010.

From my recent paper (“St. Paul on Jesus Christ, ‘Our Great God and Savior'”):

Being a creature and being the Creator are incompatible. For St. Paul, Christ is clearly the Creator, and there was no “time when [Christ] was not,” as the impious Arius said. “In Him all things in Heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through Him and for Him” (Colossians 1:16; qtd. in Prat). He is not only the efficient cause (“in Him” and “through Him”) of all angels, humans, and other beings, but is also their final cause, the end “for” Whom everything was made. As the Creator Who “Himself is before all things,” it is also His role to sustain the universe, according to St. Paul: “in Him all things hold together” (1:17; qtd. in Prat). In other words, “He sustains all things by His powerful word” (Hebrews 1:3). St. Paul did not write the “Letter to the Hebrews,” but all its ideas and contents are Pauline, so that we may truly say that the letter is of “Apostolic origin” (Fonck). Therefore there is nothing to prevent us from employing its testimony in this paper in order to illustrate Pauline Christology.

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St. Paul Directly Calls Christ “God”

May 22, 2010

Originally posted 5/12/2010.

From my recent paper (“St. Paul on Jesus Christ, ‘Our Great God and Savior'”):

St. Paul directly gives the name “God” to Christ in several places. He exhorts the elders of Ephesus “to shepherd the Church of God that He obtained with His own Blood” (Acts 20:28; qtd. in Prat). Early Patristic witnesses to this reading include Sts. Jerome (“Letter 54:4 to Furia”) and John Cassian (“On the Incarnation” 7:4). St. Jerome’s witness is not to be taken lightly!

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Christ Is Omniscient (St. Paul)

May 22, 2010

Originally posted 5/12/2010.

From my recent paper (“St. Paul on Jesus Christ, ‘Our Great God and Savior'”):

St. Paul teaches us that Christ is God is by predicating of Him other attributes proper to God (Prat). God knows everything: “before Him no creature is hidden, but all are naked and are laid bare to the eyes of the One to Whom we must render an account”(Hebrews 4:13). Creatures cannot know everything that God knows: “No one comprehends what is truly God’s except the Spirit of God,” says St. Paul (1 Corinthians 2:11; qtd. in ST I, q. 14, art. 2). Yet he tells us that “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” are hidden in Christ (Colossians 2:3). What else can this mean but that Christ knows all things and is therefore God?


Romans 9:5: Christ is God

May 22, 2010

Originally posted 5/11/2010.

From my recent paper (“St. Paul on Jesus Christ, ‘Our Great God and Savior'”):

In Romans 9:5 St. Paul refers to Christ as “the Messiah, Who is over all, God blessed forever.” All the Church Fathers who made use of this text in their Christological writings interpreted the original Greek, “ὁ ὢν ἐπὶ πάντων θεὸς,” to mean that Christ is “God over all” (Drum). These witnesses include Sts. Irenaeus, “Cyprian, Athanasius, Gregory of Nyssa, Ambrose, Augustine, and Hilary” (ibid.) This syntax has, for the Fathers, the same meaning as the syntax of the alternative translation in the NRSV footnote: that our Lord is the “Messiah, Who is God over all, blessed forever” (1922c).

Works Cited