Catholic Faith Matters

WAR IN UKRAINERELATED VIDEOS
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CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE (2:02) – Almost 1,000 Catholic convents in Poland are helping refugees from Ukraine. The Council of Major Superiors of Congregations of Women Religious in Poland said on March 15 that sisters in 924 convents in Poland and 98 in Ukraine were offering “spiritual, psychological, medical, and material help.”
May 8, 2022

Surviving a World Beset with Problems

Homilies

DIOCESE OF SACRAMENTO | 2022

We certainly live in troubled times. There is a great deal about which people can become discouraged and downhearted. Covid isolated and separated us – It has taken the lives of millions – Its variants continue to attack and disrupt lives. Our republic is no longer governed by leaders who serve the common good. Instead, they are owned and controlled by individuals and corporations. And these are made up of the rich and the powerful. We are overwhelmed by information – But we don’t really know what are truths, half-truths, or downright lies! There is even the prospect of a third World War – and the use of weapons of mass destruction! Millions are refugees from the criminal war in Ukraine – Millions of others face starvation in Africa because no wheat can be grown in Ukraine. Inflation is rampant in America – The dollar is worth only 64% of what it was in 2002 – And every one of us has the personal suffering and hardship that is part of the human condition!

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine
APRIL 3, 2022

Chaos in Shelters for Ukrainian Refugees Increases Risk of Trafficking

CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE – Chaos, disruption and the call to change our modus operandi seem to have characterised the dramas of the last few years. The protracted pandemic, the destructive weather events, the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine … These crises are symptoms of a deeper malaise, which requires not simply political, economic or medical intervention. Rather, as Pope Francis pointed out, humanity needs the courage to change direction.

These crises also have significance for the way we are being Church moving forward. While we yearn for familiarity and security, we must not allow ourselves to be unmoved by the signs of the times. We must not prefer certitude to the hard task of deep listening, discerning and aligning with the divine innovation. Like Israel of old, we must seek fresh ways of embodying God’s redeeming, forgiving and empowering love. The Church must not lose sight of the invitation to embark on a new adventure with God that is part of our DNA as a paschal people.

APRIL 3, 2022

HOMILY: Discerning A New Future in the Midst of Chaos

Diocese of Parramatta, Australia

Bishop Van Nguyen, OFM – Chaos, disruption and the call to change our modus operandi seem to have characterised the dramas of the last few years. The protracted pandemic, the destructive weather events, the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine … These crises are symptoms of a deeper malaise, which requires not simply political, economic or medical intervention. Rather, as Pope Francis pointed out, humanity needs the courage to change direction.

These crises also have significance for the way we are being Church moving forward. While we yearn for familiarity and security, we must not allow ourselves to be unmoved by the signs of the times. We must not prefer certitude to the hard task of deep listening, discerning and aligning with the divine innovation. Like Israel of old, we must seek fresh ways of embodying God’s redeeming, forgiving and empowering love. The Church must not lose sight of the invitation to embark on a new adventure with God that is part of our DNA as a paschal people.

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine
MARCH 27, 2022

Enough. Stop!

The moment has come to abolish war, to erase it from human history, before it erases humans from history.

POPE FRANICS (ANGELUS) More than a month has gone by since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, since the beginning of this cruel and senseless war, that, like every war, represents a defeat for every one, for everyone of us. We need to reject war, a place of death where fathers and mothers bury their children, where men kill their brothers and sisters without even having seen them, where the powerful decide and the poor die.

War does not devastate the present only, but the future of a society as well. I read that from the beginning of the aggression in Ukraine, one out of every two children has been displaced from their country. This means destroying the future, causing dramatic trauma in the lives of the smallest and most innocent among us. This is the brutality of war — a barbaric and sacrilegious act! – READ MORE

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 25, 2022 – Feast of the ANnunciation
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A Ukrainian Catholic Artist Bringing Light to the Darkness | Behind The Canvas

GOOD CATHOLIC (9:10) – The Russian invasion of Ukraine shows us the darkness of this world, but an icon of the Annunciation by Ukrainian Catholic artist Ivanka Demchuk brings light into that pain.

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 15, 2022
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Fr. Mark Goring, CC – (10:45)

Pope Francis: A Final Catastrophe that could Extinguish Us

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 15, 2022

Pope to consecrate Russia and Ukraine to Immaculate Heart of Mary

RELATED ARTICLE: What does our Lady of Fátima have to do with Russia and Ukraine (America Magazine)

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 13, 2022
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SAINT AUGUSTINE’S GRAHAME PARK  (11:05)

What is Our Responsibility in the Confilct in Ukraine? The Christian Response

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 13, 2022

HOMILY: Powerlessness

Homilies

DIOCESE OF SACRAMENTO | 2022

2nd Sunday of Lent – When Russian President Putin invaded Ukraine, no one was surprised. He had prepared for that invasion for months. And very little was done to dissuade or deter him! Lord Acton once said: “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely…” Edmund Burke, the Great British statesman, observed: “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Albert Einstein, after the Holocaust of World War II, said: “The world is a dangerous place to live, not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don’t do anything about it.” What is so utterly tragic about the current war in Ukraine is that the rich and the powerful of the world are profiting from it. The financial markets continue to climb – Oil prices continue to rise – The military industrial complex gets richer – And oligarchs control the politics everywhere!

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 8, 2022

HOMILY: Holy Hour For Ukraine

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CATHOLIC CWMBRAN (4:52) – Reflection from the Holy Hour for Ukraine.

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 8, 2022

Throughout history, Ukrainian Catholics have been a ‘Church of martyrs’

CRUX NEWS – Calling the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC) a Church of martyrs is not, by any means, an exaggeration.

In the Soviet era, the UGCC was the largest illegal religious body in the world and suffered mightily for it; most experts believe the total number of Greek Catholics who perished in that era of violent oppression is in the thousands… Over 3,000 priests died in the gulags, and by the time Ukraine regained its independence, only 300 were left, and not all of them in Ukraine.

The legendary Ukrainian Cardinal Josef Slipyi, who spent two decades in the gulags, once said that his church had been buried under “mountains of corpses and rivers of blood.” During his 2001 visit to Ukraine, John Paul II beatified 27 Greek Catholic martyrs under the Soviets — one of whom had been boiled alive, another crucified in prison, and a third bricked into a wall.

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

MARCH 6, 2022

HOMILY: We are At War

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NOTRE DAME de LOURDES (6:59)
1st Sunday of Lent
READ TRANSCRIPT OF HOMILY

In this first Sunday of Lent, The Gospel tells us that Jesus was tempted by the devil. Really tempted. This was not a stage performance, a mask, a fake, a performance, a show. These were real temptations. In the Post-modern world the word “temptation” has lost its meaning. So, I am going to use another word “WAR” Satan started his war with Jesus. Now, how does it sound? Serious…very serious.

We are at war. The Lenten Season reminds us that.

Peter Kreeft says that, To win any war, the three most necessary things to know are:

  • that you are at war,
  • who your enemy is, and
  • what weapons or strategies can defeat him.

1. We Are at War

If you don’t know that then Lent is just another Mardi Gras.

You may say, Father we are here not for war. Is not God a lover rather than a warrior?

No, God is a lover who is a warrior. The question fails to understand what love is, what the love that God is, is.
Love is at war with hate, betrayal, selfishness, and all love’s enemies.
Love fights. Ask any parent. puppy-love, may be merely “compassion” (the fashionable word today), but father-love and mother-love are war.

The road from Paradise Lost to Paradise Regained is soaked in blood. At the very center of the story is a cross, a symbol of conflict. The theme of spiritual warfare is never absent in scripture, and never absent in the life and writings of a single saint.

Knowing we are at war is the first requirement for winning it. The next thing we must do to win a war is to know our enemy.


2. Our Enemy: Who is our enemy?

There are two answers.

All the saints and popes throughout the Church’s history have given the same two answers, for these answers come from the Word of God on paper in the New Testament and the Word of God in flesh in Jesus Christ.

Yet they are not well known. In fact, the first answer is almost never mentioned today.
Our enemies are demons. Fallen angels. Evil spirits.

So says Jesus Christ: “Do not fear those who can kill the body and then has no more power over you. I will tell you whom to fear. Fear him who has power to destroy both body and soul in Hell.” (Mathew 10:28)

So says St. Peter, the first pope: “The Devil, like a roaring lion, is going through the world seeking the ruin of souls. Resist him, steadfast in the faith.” (1Peter 5:8)

So says St. Paul: “We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers of wickedness in high places.” (Ephesians 6:12)

I said there were two enemies. The second is even more terrifying than the first. There is one nightmare even more terrible than being chased and caught and tortured by the Devil. That is the nightmare of becoming a devil. The horror outside your soul is terrible enough; how can you bear to face the horror inside your soul?

What is the horror inside your soul? Sin. All sin is the Devil’s work, though he usually uses the flesh and the world as his instruments. Sin means inviting the Devil in. And we do it. That’s the only reason why he can do his awful work; God won’t let him do it without our free consent.


3. The Weapon

And thus, we have our third Necessary Thing:

It’s not prayer, fasting and almsgiving. They are only roads that help us to get the weapon. It doesn’t mean they are not important. They are. You have to be on the road to get the weapon.

The weapon that will win the war and defeat our enemy. All it takes is saints. Yes, you heard me right. Being a Saint.

Can you imagine what twelve more Mother Teresas would do for the world?

Here is one of the truest and most terrifying sentences from William Law’s Serious Call: “If you will look into your own heart in complete honesty, you must admit that there is one and only one reason why you are not a saint: you do not wholly want to be.”

That insight is terrifying because it is an indictment. But it is also thrillingly hopeful because it is an offer, an open door. Each of us can become a saint. We really can.

What holds us back?


Fear of paying the price.

What is the price?
The answer is simple. T.S. Eliot defines the Christian life as: “A condition of complete simplicity/Costing not less than/Everything.” The price is everything: 100%.

The Goal of Lent is to be a Saint:

“In fact, it needs to be a good man to repent. And here comes the catch. Only a bad person needs to repent: only a good person can repent perfectly. The worse you are the more you need it and the less you can do it. The only person who could do it perfectly would be a perfect person – and he would not need it (p. 57).” Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

FEBRUARY 27, 2022

HOMILY: ‘I’m British by Birth, but
Ukrainian in Spirit’

Archbishop John Wilson (Archdiocese of Southwark)

The news and images from Ukraine in recent days are truly devastating. Our eyes are filled with tears; tears of anguish and tears of sorrow. Our hearts are heavy, weighed down with immeasurable sadness. God’s plan for his people is peace, not disaster, not war. But peace in Ukraine has been stolen and the consequences are disastrous.

Before I say anything else, it is so important for you to know, dear brothers and sisters from Ukraine – and for your fellow countrymen and woman suffering in your beloved homeland – that we stand with you. We stand with you shoulder to shoulder, heart to heart, and soul to soul. We stand with you in undivided solidarity, as must every person and nation that believes in peace.

Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

FEBRUARY 27, 2022

Cardinal Blase Cupich at St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral

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CATHOLIC CHICAGO (3:31) – Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, joined Bishop Benedict Aleksiychuk as the Ukrainian Catholic Church offers a Divine Liturgy for Peace in Ukraine at St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral on Sunday, February 27.

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Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

FEBRUARY 27, 2022

Praying for Ukraine

“I have to be honest: This isn’t the homily I was planning to preach this weekend—But Wednesday changed everything”

Deacon Greg Kandra

May that light of Christ burn brightly, fearlessly, in the parts of the world that seem overwhelmed by darkness.
We’ve seen the pictures, heard the bulletins, watched the reporters on TV wearing helmets and bright blue vests marked PRESS. We’ve seen the tanks rolling toward Kyiv and the cars lined up for miles trying to get out of the country. We’ve seen the images of mothers desperate to leave on foot, pushing their children in strollers through the cold. We’ve watched artillery fire light up the night sky and we’ve heard the explosions, and we’ve felt our lips form the words, “Oh my God.”

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Homilies on Invasion of Ukraine

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