Index : T
"The Real Presence Eucharistic Education and Adoration Association is a gift of Divine Providence.
I heartily approve the goal of this association. It perfectly reflects the mind of Pope
John Paul II in promoting devotion to Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament of the altar." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
The key word that stands out in the Churchs teaching on home schooling is the word "primary". Parents responsibility to educate their children is primary. This means, it is their first responsibility. It is primordial; it is inalienable; it is almost impossible to provide an adequate substitute.
Devotion to the Sacred Heart is as simple and as complex, as evident and as elusive, as love. No one who is familiar with the authentic literature on the subject can doubt that devotion to the Sacred Heart is an infinitely rich treasure. Our Lord Himself referred to His Heart, and to the devotion centered on it, as an inexhaustible store of graces and blessings.
The touchstone of sincerity in the spiritual life for all Christians, of whatever age or mental maturity, is to serve God with their whole heart in the person of Christ, and their neighbor as themselves for the love of God. But we do not serve unless we love. Unless our wills are duly trained to respond to the goodness of God, to His great mercy and love for us even to becoming man and remaining with us in the Eucharist, we shall not serve Him, at least not in the measure that His goodness deserves.
The Week of the Sacred Heart is given to children as a small brochure, which they are told to keep and use as their own. Each day, from Sunday through Saturday, has an appropriate set of resolutions, a typical practice or duty, and a special aspiration to the Sacred Heart. Opposite the daily program is a pen sketch of some mystery in the life of Christ that will appeal to children.
The vast majority of people seem to depend completely upon their prayer books to entertain Christ in their hearts after Holy Communion. Small wonder, then, they do not enjoy that sweet intimacy which could be theirs if they learn to listen to Him while pressing Him close to their hearts, and talk to Him in that intimate, familiar, and confident converse which they use for their closest friends, telling them their troubles, their joys, their sorrows, and asking them for advice when they dont know or are not sure what they ought to do.
Many schools have found that the Apostleship of Prayer prospers in the degree to which it cooperates with the Sodality of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The cooperation takes on as many forms as circumstances allow. As an elite group, Sodalists often make the best promoters. They also need an outlet for their zeal, which the Apostleship in and around the school can easily furnish. Above all, joining the Sodality spirit with devotion to the Heart of Christ produces that balanced form of piety for which there is no real substitute.
These monthly examination-of-conscience outlines were originally prepared for use by Sodalists, but they were revised to make them applicable to all high school students.
The theme of the Sacred Heart can be adapted to almost any form of dramatic presentation. It has all the elements that make for aesthetic appeal and strong imagery, and a certain touch of simplicity that even adult "children" can appreciate. This presumes, however, that the teacher has mastered the idea that the whole gamut of Christs life on earthmortal and risen, mystical and Eucharisticbelongs to the Sacred Heart devotion.
My greatest success in spreading devotion to the Sacred Heart and the Apostleship of Prayer has been through the promoters group. In the beginning, the group must be hand picked. I chose good promoters by having a teacher screen each of the upper three years and give me names of boys whom they thought would be likely candidates for the group. Some were eliminated in the course of talks with the teachers, and we finally got the list down to two or three boys in each class. Then I extended a personal invitation to each one to come to an organizational meeting. At this meeting I explained the purpose of the groupto make the Sacred Heart devotion a way of life for themselves and to help spread it to others. Out of an original forty-four or so, thirty persevered. Others have also have since asked to join, and of course I have accepted them, since I had intended to make the group "open" after the original hand-picking.
The Eucharistic Crusade is a special section of the Apostleship of Prayer for children of grammar-school and junior-high school age. Its purpose is to teach children to live the morning offering in union with the Mass. Since it is a section of the Apostleship of Prayer, it retains the basic practices of the Apostleship. But it develops these practices somewhat to make them more immediately intelligible and attractive to children and adds a training program designed to make the spirit and the practices of the Apostleship a life-long possession.
In the present meditation we shall concentrate on the narrative which is found in the gospels, for our purpose especially in St. Matthew, with an explanation of the meaning to understand what exactly took place when Christ was tempted. Our next meditation we will be to see the implications, the profound implications for our moral, spiritual, and collective lives of society which, I can honestly say, is being deeply penetrated by the evil spirit.
What is strange about the title is the combination of Ten Commandments and Christian Sanctity. The Ten Commandments or Decalogue were given to Moses in the Old Testament. Whereas Christian sanctity, by definition, is the holiness which Christ offered to His followers in the New Testament. Moreover, the Ten Commandments are the absolute minimum that God expects of human beings as a condition for reaching their eternal destiny. Whereas Christian sanctity, if we may coin a phrase, represents the maximum that human beings, with the help of Gods grace, can give in their loving dedication to God and their total self-surrender to His divine will.
We wish in the present meditation to reflect on the Ten Commandments, but as found in the New Covenant since Christ
Whatever else the spiritual life means, it means first, obedience to the commandments of God. Our main purpose in the present reflections will be to see that Christ did not, emphatically, did not eliminate the Ten Commandments. He not only confirmed them, but He elevated them, the Magna Carta, therefore, of New Testament morality, as recorded by Saint Matthew.
In the present conference, we will look on the Ten commandments as they are found in the Old Testament
The Ten commandments come just before the Divine mandate to love God with our whole heart, and soul, and strength. Among the errors condemned by the Council of Trent in the 16th century, are two that have special importance today. Declared the council: If anyone says that the Ten commandments do not apply to Christians, let him be anathema. And again the Church defines: if anyone says that Jesus Christ has been given to men as the redeemer in whom they are to trust, and not also as a legislator whom they are to obey, let him be anathema.
When we think of the three theological virtues of Faith, Hope, and Charity (Love), we have many conceptions of what
they mean and how they interact in our lives, and what is required for living these virtues. The supernatural virtues are those
which unite us with God. The effect of these graces is to raise us to a supernatural mode of being through which we can
become children of God. The key for us is understanding what these virtues are and how we gain their benefit.
Theology, literally "the science of God," is derived from the Greek Theos (God) and logos (study). The term was used by the Stoics in the third century B.C. to describe a reasoned analysis of the deity. Earlier uses were more naturalistic. Thus Plato in the Republic and Aristotle in his Metaphysics called Homer, Hesiod, and Orpheus theologians because they first determined the genealogies and attributes of the gods. With the advent of Christianity theology came to mean what its etymology suggested, and was defined by St. Augustine as "reasoning or discourse about the divinity."
Our present conference has a thesis. Our thesis may be stated in one declarative sentence. Professed Catholics must become channels of extraordinary grace to the modern world. And they will become channels of grace to others in the measure, I repeat only in the measure, of their own reception of grace through the Holy Eucharist as the sacrament sacrifice of the mass, as the Communion sacrament of Holy Communion and as the presence sacrament of Christs Real Presence now on earth in the Holy Eucharist.
Our present meditation is on the third precept of the Decalogue. Surprisingly, the Third Commandment comes in three parts. First of all, it prescribes work for six days a week. Secondly, it prescribes the sanctification of what was called the Sabbath in the Old Law and Sunday in the New Law. And then it prescribes abstention from servile work, again for the ancient Jews on the Sabbath, which meant rest, and for us on Sundays and what we call holy days of obligation. My plan is to cover both those three parts and add a somewhat detailed set of recommendations.
"My purpose in this conference will be twofold: first to identify and explain what the Catholic Church understands by the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, and then to see how basic to Protestantism is the denial of the Real Presence." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
The "Catechism of the Catholic Church" is not a mere collection of doctrines. It provides the groundwork for understanding what we Catholics believe. On this level, the Catechism is unique. The Holy Spirit is guiding the Church in the most academically sophisticated age of her history. In America alone, over five million students go to college every year. We are trained to the hilt in every humanistic subject from azymes to zygotes. But most Catholics are undereducated in their faith. The result is predictable. By the time they finish even their secondary education, they find themselves in conflict in their own minds. They are trained in science, history, and world literature. They know the structure of the atom and the composition of the moon. At the same time, their minds have been, to say the least, undertrained in the religion they profess. What happens? They abandon their Catholic faith as a remnant of childhood.
When we say through Mary, to Jesus, we mean that: Through Marys voluntary consent we have received Jesus. Through Marys example we are better able to imitate Jesus. Through Marys intercession we obtain graces from Jesus. To better understand what these phrases mean, is to more deeply appreciate what it means to be a Catholic.
In todays confused world, it is not an idle question to ask: What is a Catholic? A simple answer would be: A Catholic is a Christian who believes we are to go to Jesus through Mary.
"This is my 31st year in working for the Holy See. And the single most important responsibility which Holy Father and the Vatican have given me is to inspire the laity, the faithful devoted laity to preserve and promote the Catholic Faith. I would like to summarize what I want to say with you in seven letters, L L S W C O and S in order for the laity to both preserve and promote the Catholic faith in the modern secularized world." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
Any approach to a dialogue between the American Baptist Convention and the Roman Catholic Church should begin with some understanding between the two traditions. Without such mutual understanding, there is a risk that the intended dialogue might become a disputation, or, at the other extreme, might never come to grips with those essentials to which we are deeply committed as Christian communities.
I have decided to do the brave thing and presume to state briefly what I consider the fundamentals of Baptist faith and polity, which I will then examine in the light of Catholic thought. My hope is that in this way we shall have some common ground for further discussion, building on principles that are of common concern to all Christians interested in religious unity.
"Our purpose in these lectures is to develop our basic theme, which I call
"The Catholic Discovery of America." Our focus will not be on
the discovery of America, which is obvious. It will be on the Catholic
discovery of America which, I assure you, is not obvious." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
"The subject of our conference is the Catechist as Channel of Grace. First, a long introduction. The last person we would expect to suggest as a model for catechists is the Little Flower, St. Therese of Lisieux. Her short life of 24 years, from 1873 to 1897 was spent with her family until her early teens. The rest of her life was in the cloistered Carmelite convent. Neither is exactly what we understand by catechesis, which means teaching the Faith. Yet, what she wrote in her one book, her autobiography, tells us volumes on what is the principal task of a catechist." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
"Somewhere near the center of the crisis in the Catholic Church today is confusion about the meaning of the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist. Pope Paul VI recognized this crisis before the close of the Second Vatican Council. He identified the two principal errors about the Real Presence that were already current in his day." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
"The average Catholic is vague concerning the nature of the Eucharistic presence of Christ, and one can sympathize with him, in view of the lack of clear teaching about the Most Blessed Sacrament. The basic objection to the Catholic doctrine of the real presence is not that it is against Scripture, but that it is against reason." - John Young
The Treasury of Catholic Wisdom is a comprehensive anthology of the outstanding Catholic literature from the first century
to modern times. Mystics and martyrs, philosophers and theologians, poets and prose writers are quoted at length and in depth.
They are truly representative of the spirit and substance of Catholicism in its paradox of phenomenal stability and versatility over the centuries.
Part of The Most Holy Eucharist Series, a group of six brochures by Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
"Out of what is becoming a Eucharistic library of the Pope's teaching, I wish to concentrate on what he says in his first encyclical, Redemptor Hominis. My plan is to explain what the Holy Father's teaching on the Eucharist in this document means, while drawing on his other writings to fill out the explanation." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
"In a society such as ours that rejects metaphysics, glorifies moral relativism, promotes blatant materialism, and whose academics are busy deconstructing the truth, it should not surprise us that an enormous spiritual void has emerged, which many desperately try to fill with frenetic consumerism, joyless hedonism, or bogus spirituality." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
DETROIT - They came by the thousands to say goodbye, to bid their final, usually tearful, farewell to Fr. John Hardon, the Jesuit priest, theologian, author and, for many, the closest thing they had known to a "living saint."
Young and old they came, for the last few months, from all over the United States, from Rome, from too many countries to count. Rich, poor, scholars and professors, as well as some barely educated, marginally employed and unemployed. Most were Catholics, many converts to the Faith. There were countless priests and nuns.
The true purpose of education is to teach people the purpose of their lives here on earth. This purpose is to use the creatures that enter their lives as a means of reaching their eternal destiny in the life to come. That destiny is nothing less than entering heaven and possessing God in the perfect satisfaction of all human desires.
The phenomenal growth of Eucharistic adoration and worship in the Catholic Church stands to reason. Once the faithful realized who is on earth, no less than He was in first century Palestine, it is no wonder that those who believe will flock to be in His presence, to honor and thank Him as their God, and to ask Him for the graces they so desperately need. Experience shows that as a parish or a diocese, or a country develops its worship of Christ in the Holy Eucharist, the life of the people wonderfully improves. Why not? It is the same Jesus who worked miracles during His visible stay on earth. He promised to work even greater miracles, mainly through the Blessed Sacrament, for those who believe.
We distribute the human race into two kinds of men, one living according to man, the other living according to God. Mystically, we call them two Cities, or two societies of men: the one of which is predestined to reign eternally with God, the other to suffer eternal punishment with the devil. (City of God, 15, 1.)
"By now so much has been written and spoken about the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and Pope John Pauls encyclical Veritatis Splendor, you may wonder if there is anything new to say. Yes, there is. In my judgment this catechism and encyclical mark a turning point in the history of the Catholic Church." - Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J.
Our meditation for this evening is on the Two Standards: Christ and Satan. As you know, this meditation is at the beginning of the second week of the Spiritual Exercises. My plan is to cover this in three areas. First, to speak on the devil and the Divine Providence, then to expand specifically on the two standards, and finally, to say something on how we are to cope with the evil spirit in our lives.