The Jewish Passover has been celebrated since the Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt. It commemorates the story from the book of Exodus and their birth as a nation under the leadership of Moses. The Passover sacrifice, is the sacrifice that the Torah mandates to be brought on the eve of Passover. Continue reading
If you walk into just about any Catholic Church today, you will probably see an artistic display of “The Stations of the Cross.” The Stations may be made of stone, wood, or metal, sculptured or carved, or they may be merely paintings or engravings. They are usually placed at certain intervals around the walls of a church, though sometimes they are to be found in the open air, especially on roads leading to a church or shrine. Continue reading
Jesus Christ instituted holy anointing during his earthly ministry. We see it alluded to in the Gospel of Mark, “So they went out and preached that men should repent. And they cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many that were sick and healed them (Mark 6:12-13).” It is directly found in the book of James, where the apostle and brother of our Lord recommends it: Continue reading
The Sacrament of Reconciliation, sometimes called Confession or Penance, heals us of the separation from God caused by our sinfulness. Because of God’s rich mercy for us, He set up a remedy for people who, after Baptism, continue to fall out of His grace by falling into sin. This remedy is the Sacrament of Reconciliation. However, this was not a sacrament before the coming of Christ and it is also not a sacrament for anyone who has not been baptized.
Because of the stain of serious sin, all men have needed reconciliation to obtain grace and justice. Continue reading
We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. But, are all sins classified as the same or is there a difference? Some folks who hold to the “once saved, always saved” theology might say, “There is no difference in the magnitude of certain sins. There is no venial or mortal sins. All sins are serious. The wages of sin is death! Continue reading
When it comes to a relationship with God, what is our understanding of a “moral conscience?” If you and I had never been told about the moral law, we would still have an idea of what is right and what is wrong in regards to how we live our lives and how we are to treat other people. This is what is known as the “natural law written on our hearts.” It is the law God has given each person and it is found in the depths of our being. Continue reading
Ash Wednesday is an important part of the season of Lent. The Church sees some of the largest crowds of people show up on this day in order to receive ashes. Why do so many people come to receive ashes even though it is not a holy day of obligation? Many people would not think of letting Ash Wednesday go by without making a trip to Church and receiving ashen cross on their foreheads. How did this practice become so popular with Christian believers and why do many Catholics wear that smudge faithfully all day long without washing it off? Continue reading