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SAINT PAUL - THE MAN

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CLASSIC Re-post:  Let's keep on with the Story of Saint Paul - there's so much to know and love in his life, and he is so very real as you will see:







BACKGROUND: "Set apart (by God) from the day of my birth" (Gal. 1:15)
Saul's upbringing and formation uniquely prepared him for his apostolic life. The Tradition in the early Church ( according to St. Jerome ) was that Saul's family originally came from Gaililee. They moved to Tarsus in Cilicia and before Saul's birth, had acquired the prized Roman citizenship.
Paul, in later years , was insistent on the importance of three aspects of this background: He was a Hebrew, born of Hebrews ( that is, not just a Diaspora Israelite he belonged (Phillipians 3 : 5);"I am a Jew from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no mean city", he informs the Tribune in Jerusalem ( Acts 21 : 39). The Greek historian/ geographer/ philosopher Strabo ( 63/64 B.c - A.D. 24 ) says of Tarsus : " ....there was much zeal for philos…

SAINT PAUL'S WORLD

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St Paul’s World
Saul was born between 2 and 5 AD in Tarsus in the Roman Province of Cilicia.It stood opposite the north coast of the island of Cyprus and the west coast of Syria.Rome then controlled almost the entire Mediterranean coast from Spain along the north coast to the eastern extremity, and then along the African coast to Numidia. Caesar Augustus then 65-68 years old, would have been the only Emperor Saul’s parents had known.When they had been growing up stories of the conquests of Pompey Magnus in the region including, significantly for them as Jews, the conquest of Jerusalem in 63 BC, would have been commonplace. Augustus’ rule had brought steadily increasing prosperity and order to the Empire and consequently to the lives of Saul’s parents.  They were Roman citizens, the prized status of the ancient world, a status Saul inherited.  How they had gained that status we do not know, but Philo of Alexandria tells us that Augustus made it possible for the Jews of Rome to become Roma…

"......ALL IN HEAVEN ABOVE ADORE THEE......"PART II

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In Part I we began our exploration of " all in Heaven", by considering the Holy Angels . We are told that they were created before Man so that seemed only appropriate. We now come to the question: Who else is in Heaven?

Sacred Scripture, Christ's Church and Tradition provide the answer. 

We can clearly state that the Blessed Virgin Mary is in Heaven,since that has been the constant teaching of the Church since her death, and it has been dogmatically defined by Pope Pius XII on 1st November, 1950 in "Munificentissimus Deus".

From Sacred Scripture directly, we know that the Good Thief crucified beside Our Lord is in Heaven, for we have Jesus' own assurance to him : 
"...to-day you will be with Me in Paradise." Luke 23:43

We know that after Death we will face the Judgement Seat of Christ,but Tradition has it that our Judgement will be effected in two modes:

The Particular Judgement

The particular Judgement at Death, and the General Judgement at the Second C…

".....ALL IN HEAVEN ABOVE ADORE THEE......" PART I

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The approach of this line in the hymn caused me some anxiety , because it did not seem to admit of any significant commentary - but that was only at first glance!

Yes, the Holy Angels in Heaven most certainly do adore the Godhead.But even at that point it wasn't always completely so, was it?

ANGELS

Whilst the popular culture has keenly adopted the word " Angel" it has only done so by ignoring the sublime reality of the Holy Angels and  substituting either disembodied winged cherubs, or females of varying degrees of saccharine sweetness. 

Whereas , in reality , Sacred Scripture invariably speaks of Angels appearing as young men, and rather awesome ones at that - it is no co-incidence that Angelic appearances so often begin with " Be not afraid" or similar phrases.

What do we know about Angels? Well to begin with, we should consider the word "Angel" which comes at its origin, from Hebrew then  Greek and then Latin, means " one sent" and consequentl…

"...... LORD OF ALL......"

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" ........LORD OF ALL......" How often are we so absorbed in our own devotion, or on the negative side, our own pre-occupations, that we let the words " Lord of all" roll off our tongues unthinkingly? The fact is that they signify and should conjure up, a totally awe inspiring concept.

The One,True, Trinitarian God has brought every single element of creation into being and each fragment survives in existence solely because of His Will.

Our mere human minds can accept this concept but are totally unable to comprehend the extent of what is involved.And again we do become accustomed to oft - repeated ideas.

Father Nicola Avancini S.J. 1612 - 1686 in his Meditations ( " The Life and Teaching of Our Lord Jesus Christ") (#228 -The Immensity and Omnipresence of God - Friday of 3rd Week after Pentecost), writes  :

" 1. " Do I not fill heaven and Earth , saith the Lord" (Jer, XXIII. 24)
Wherever space exists, wherever space can be imagined to exist, God…

".....WE PRAISE THY NAME....."

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Saturday, June 15, 2013 "....WE PRAISE THY NAME....." How true is it?   " ...We praise Thy Name" ?

Let us recall that in ancient times The Name was in effect the person

for many purposes. So it is that we pray " Blessed is He Who comes in the Name of the Lord" that is He Who is the Lord.

Saint Paul tells us: " Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name which is above every name,10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."

Yet to-day we tolerate on our TV and Movie screens the most casual and even vile abuse of the Holy Name of Jesus. And this escapes without even a flicker of protest. But even within the Church the honour that customarily was given to the Holy Name of Jesus among the Catholic faithful, the reverent bowing of the head whenever Our Lord's Name was mentioned, is rarely seen.…