Thursday, December 31, 2009

Pope Benedict Affirms the Importance of Catechesis

Last week upon receiving in audience the bishops of Belarus, Pope Benedict stated that "It is particularly important to proclaim with a new and incisive enthusiasm the perennial Gospel message in a society that is not immune to the temptations of secularization, hedonism and relativism." The Pope also spoke of the importance of education and catechesis, especially of the youth: "As I noted many times before, today we are living a type of 'emergency' in this delicate and essential area, and it is necessary to multiply our efforts so as to offer a solid formation, first and foremost to the new generation." Benedict XVI noted the importance of catechesis that fits the needs of people in all stages of their lives.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Names of God

All 144 names of God that appear in the Scriptures may not be included here, but they came pretty close in this 2:22 minute video. Check it out at The Nativity which is described as “a Christmas video using the many names of God set to the "Nativity Story". If interested you can register at Gloria TV and have access to many, many more videos. If you are interested in praying the Litany of the Holy Name of Jesus, please go to EWTN.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


National Vocation Awareness Week
As catechetical leaders, we all have an obligation and a wonderful opportunity to promote vocations to the priesthood and religious life!!!

The Catholic Church in the United States will celebrate National Vocation Awareness Week, January 10-16. “This week provides the opportunity for parishes across the country to promote vocations through prayer and education,” said Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston, chairman of the Bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations. “It is our responsibility to encourage young people to be generous in their response as they discern the possibility of a call to service in the Church. We must also ask parents, families and our parish communities to assist with this work, vocations are everyone’s business. As we pray for an increased number of seminarians and candidates for religious life, we recognize the importance of safeguarding the gift of vocations.”Several initiatives to highlight priesthood and religious life are on-going in 2010. The Vatican-sponsored Year for Priests continues through June 2010 Dioceses are highlighting the role of priests in diocesan newspapers, on their Web sites and with other events.An exhibit on the contributions of women religious in the United States, Women & Spirit, opens at the Smithsonian institution in Washington, January 14. More information on this traveling exhibit can be found at The Smithsonian is co-sponsoring this exhibit with the Leadership Conference of Women Religious.The U.S. bishops have also named promotion of vocations to priesthood and religious life as one of their current five priorities and are deciding on efforts to promote vocations, for example, through their Website, Read the entire Press Release.

"O Antiphons"

“O” Antiphons Begin This Week – December 17-23
The seven titles attributed to Jesus in the antiphons are Wisdom (Sapientia in Latin), Ruler of the House of Israel (Adonai), Root of Jesse (Radix), Key of David (Clavis), Rising Dawn (Oriens), King of the Gentiles (Rex). and Emmanuel. In Latin the initials of the titles make an acrostic which, when read backwards. means: "Tomorrow I will be there" ("Ero cras"). Christians since the Middle Ages have been fascinated by this coincidence because Christmas Eve (December 24) falls on the day after the singing of the final antiphon.
The Great O Antiphons form the basis of the popular Advent hymn, O Come, O Come, Emmanuel by English hymnographer John Neale. The sequence of the antiphons is theologically precise, progressing from before the creation of the universe, through the messianic prophecies of Israel, and culminating with the Incarnation and birth of Christ in Bethlehem. There are many sights that explain these antiphons and offer meditations. I am only listing a few; you can always Google “O” Antiphons.
What Are the "O" Antiphons
Antiphons - Fish Eaters
Praising the Names of Jesus
Create an "O" Antiphon House
Praying with the "O" Antiphons


The University of Notre Dame STEP is offering several new online courses beginning January 4, 2010:

Women and Catholicism in the U.S.
The Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton
Youth Ministry 101
The Papacy
The RCIA: Can We Get the Rite Right?
The American Catholic Experience
History of Christianity: The Early Middle Ages
An Introduction to Sacraments
Jesus Christ: Yesterday and Today
Liturgy: A Guide for the Perplexed
The Old Testament: The Prophets
On Christian Marriage
Core Course: Introduction to the Catholic Faith
The Gospel of John: The Book of Glory

For more information or to register, go to