Five Faith Friday

Here is this week's installment of "Five Faith Friday" which contains five, faith-based things I found interesting and am sharing on Friday.

What I'm Celebrating Today --
The Solemnity of Saint Joseph!!!! He's the terror of demons, the protector of the Holy Church, the pillar of families, the model of workmen, the mirror of patience, and he's the savior of the Savior! If you haven't done the Consecration to St. Joseph yet, do it! 4.9 out of 5 stars with 4,800 reviews is all the reason you need to do it but in case you needed another, it's also the Year of St. Joseph!

You know what else is neat? Because today is a Solemnity, it means that today is a Meat Friday, so go ahead and fry up some bacon for breakfast in honor of your spiritual father!

"Abstinence from meat, or from some other food as determined by the Episcopal Conference, is to be observed on all Fridays, unless a solemnity should fall on a Friday ... " (Code of Canon Law #1251). Yes, every Friday of the year, both inside and outside of Lent, Catholics are required to abstain from meat. Why? To commemorate the Passion and death of Our Savior Jesus Christ. Since Jesus sacrificed his flesh for us on Good Friday, we refrain from eating flesh meat in His honor on Fridays unless a Solemnity should fall on Friday. This year we actually have three meat Fridays:

  • Jan 1 - Solemnity of Mary, The Holy Mother of God
  • Mar 19 - Solemnity of Saint Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary
  • Jun 11 - Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Which News I Heard --
The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) clarified that the Catholic Church cannot give a blessing to unions of persons of the same sex because God “cannot bless sin." The CDF stated that “It is not licit to impart a blessing on relationships, or partnerships, even stable, that involve sexual activity outside of marriage (i.e., outside the indissoluble union of a man and a woman open in itself to the transmission of life), as is the case of the unions between persons of the same sex.” Some claim that the Catholic Church needs a serious infusion of the 21st century. But of course, the opposite is true. The 21st century needs a serious infusion of the Catholic Church! That’s because the Church isn’t making up the “truth” as it goes along. The Church is the servant of the truths permanently written into the nature of the human person and created by God Himself. The Pope and the Vatican couldn’t alter the truth about what *is* -- even if they wanted to! People like to create their own god reflective of their own moral standards but our goal isn't to define God and conform God's will to ours, but to conform our will to his. Remember what Our Lady of Fatima revealed to Sister Lucia? That the final battle between Our Lord and Satan will be over marriage and the family. Whether this specific fight is the final battle or not, the conflict is upon us. And we’re right in the middle of it.

What Article I Read --
"Ven. Al Schwartz: A Happy Roar for the Dead Man" by Kevin Wells. It's an absolutely brilliant read and I am excited to read the full book about Father Al ("Priest and Beggar - The Heroic Life of Venerable Aloysius Schwartz" by Kevin Wells) here shortly (don't worry, I'll be doing a feature about this soon). EWTN even did a special on him during their "They Might Be Saints" show - here is the trailer for it. And Father Al was the mastermind behind the World Villages organization which is a great one to donate to if you still need to increase your almsgiving for Lent.

Which Announcement I Watched --
"The Chosen" season 2 release date announcement! When is it being released? Easter Sunday! Everyone should check out "The Chosen." Here is the trailer for season 1. It is a highly produced, critically acclaimed series on the life of Jesus. There are going to be a total of 7 seasons and I can't get enough. Fun fact: it is the #1 crowdfunded film or TV project in history! One of the best parts is that the entire series is free. You can stream the entire season on YouTube, get it via their app (Android or iOS) which is my favorite way since they have a lot of bonus content, or buy the DVDs on their gift website. The first episode is somewhat slow but really sets the stage. If you can get to episode 2, I promise you won't regret it!

What Books I Read --
I wrapped up two books this week:

  1. "Letter and Spirit: From Written Text to Living Word in the Liturgy" by Scott Hahn. I have not read a single book from him that I don't like. From Amazon: "For both Christians and Jews, the texts of the Bible are not simply records of historical events. They are intended, through public recitations in churches and synagogues, to bring listeners and readers into the sweeping story of redemption as it unfolds in the Bible. Focusing on the Catholic Mass, Hahn describes how God’s Word is meant to open our eyes to the life-giving power of the sacraments, and how the liturgy brings about the “actualization” of the saving truths of Scripture."
  2. "On Loving God" by Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. I don't remember where I found this book, but it was a very solid read. In this book, Saint Bernard lays out the four types of love that Christians experience as they grow in their relationship with God: loving one's self, selfish love, loving God as God, and loving one's self in God. It's a rather short read (62 pages) and not overly complex, yet still worth reading.

Have a wonderful weekend and may God bless you and your family!


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