Mary is a Big Deal! Part II

09-24-2017Catholic ThoughtsDavid Lins

Last week, I used this space to address why people should desire and pursue a strong devotion to the Blessed Mother.

This week, I'd like to get a little blunt. Many people attack the Catholic Church for placing too much emphasis on Mary. These same people often claim we don't put enough emphasis on the Bible. In order to calmly refute both of these claims at the same time, let's see if Mary just shows up in the manger and then vanishes from the Bible. (Spoiler alert: she doesn't.)

We need to start where the Bible starts: The book of Genesis. Addressing the devil, God says, "I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers."

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Mary is a Big Deal!

09-17-2017Catholic ThoughtsDavid Lins

Are you hesitating to dive into a deeper love and appreciation of the Blessed Mother Mary? Maybe you wish we weren’t doing quite so much for the anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima? Maybe you don’t get what the big deal is? Maybe you are even a bit embarrassed when someone who doesn’t know you are Catholic asks what church you attend and you say, “Our Lady of Joy.”

Here is the issue for many people: You’ve seen people who rave about Mary all day long, but they never seem to translate that to any mention of her Son, Jesus, and something about that seems a bit off. It is almost as if they worship her and not the Savior.

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Let Us Go Forth

09-13-2017Pastor LetterBishop Thomas J. Olmsted

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

This past week on the Feast of the Exultation of the Holy Cross and the 30th anniversary of St. John Paul II's historical visit to the Arizona desert, I formally announced to the public a campaign to strengthen evangelization and discipleship efforts in the Diocese of Phoenix.

Click here Bishop Letter to read the Bishop's complete letter in English and Spanish.

A Fresh Cup of Coffee

09-10-2017Catholic ThoughtsDavid Lins

I know some of you like your coffee black. I do NOT understand people like you. Why wouldn’t you add the sweetness and richness of creamer?

(Actually, I am not trying to convert you. You just need to know where I am coming from with the following analogy. See if you can follow me on this one.)

Each morning is a fresh cup of coffee. Throughout the day, we sip away at it. As we fall asleep for the night, we take the final sip.

We need to remember we are the ones who choose what we add to that coffee.

We can add the sweetness of our Faith, which is added through daily Mass, personal prayer time, the rosary, parish involvement, and so much more! Additionally, we can offer the sweetness of Faith to other people’s cup of coffee.

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Caution: Stumbling Blocks

09-03-2017Catholic ThoughtsDavid Lins

Many of us remember Jesus giving Peter his name, which means “the rock.” Most of us don’t realize Jesus called Peter a rock a second time in Matthew 16.

Later, in that same chapter, we read, “Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer greatly from the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised. Then Peter took Jesus aside and began to rebuke him, “God forbid, Lord! No such thing shall ever happen to you.”

First of all, you read that correctly - Peter rebuked Jesus. How did Jesus react? In the translation we hear at Mass, Jesus calls Peter Satan. Then, He calls him an obstacle. In earlier translations, the word was “hindrance.” The word hindrance comes from the Greek word skandalon. The literal translation of this root word is “stumbling stone.”

See what Jesus did there?

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