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domingo, 31 de diciembre de 2017

The Bible Teaches That Jesus Is Truly Present In The Eucharist


THE BIBLE TEACHES THAT JESUS IS TRULY PRESENT IN THE EUCHARIST 

By Bro. Peter Dimond 

John 6:53- “Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.” 
Protestants do not believe that the Eucharist is the actual body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ.  Catholics believe that after the consecration at Mass, “the Lord Jesus Christ, true God and true man, is truly, really, and substantially contained” in the Eucharist under the appearance of bread and wine (Council of Trent, Decree on the Eucharist).  The Catholic view of the Eucharist was unanimously held for the first 1500 years of Christianity.  The biblical support for the Catholic teaching on the Eucharist is overwhelming and undeniable.   
IN JOHN CHAPTER 6, JESUS CLEARLY SAYS THAT HIS FLESH IS FOOD AND HIS BLOOD IS DRINK, AND THAT YOU MUST EAT HIS FLESH AND DRINK HIS BLOOD 
John 6:51-58- “I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.  The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?  Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.  Whosoever eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.  For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.  As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.  This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.” 
Jesus says over and over again, in the clearest terms, that His flesh is food and His blood is drink.  He says that unless you eat His flesh and drink His blood you shall not have life in you.   
THE JEWS SCOFFED AT THE NOTION OF EATING HIS FLESH; IN RESPONSE, JESUS CONFIRMS THAT THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT HE MEANT 
Non-Catholics claim that the words of Jesus in John 6 are not meant to be understood literally.  They claim that Jesus was speaking only metaphorically or symbolically.  Such an interpretation is not justified by the context of John 6.  Furthermore, it is clearly refuted by what Jesus said to the Jews immediately after they expressed their disbelief at the idea of eating His flesh. 
John 6:52-53- “The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?  Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.” 
The Jews did not believe that it was possible (or that Jesus could really mean) that He would give them His flesh to eat.  They said exactly what the Protestants are saying today.  If Jesus had been speaking in purely metaphorical (rather than literal) terms, as the Protestants say, then here was the perfect opportunity for Him to assure them that their fears were unfounded.  It was the perfect moment for Jesus to explain that He didn’t really mean that people would eat His flesh, but that He meant something else.    
So what does Jesus say to them?  In response to their disbelief, we see that Jesus repeats the same message, that it’s necessary to actually eat His flesh and drink His blood, but in even stronger terms.  He tells them that if they don’t eat His flesh and drink His blood they will not have life in them (John 6:53). 

THERE’S MORE: IN JOHN 6:54, THE BIBLE SWITCHES FROM THE WORD PHAGO (MEANING “EAT”) TO TROGO (MEANING “CHEW” OR “GNAW”) TO LEAVE NO DOUBT THAT JESUS ACTUALLY MEANS EATING HIS FLESH 
The word phago (meaning “to eat” or “consume”) is used nine times in the original Greek text of John 6:23-53.  Phago is sufficient to convey the idea of eating Jesus’ flesh.  Immediately after the Jews expressed their disbelief that Jesus could mean such a thing, we read (in John 6:54) that Jesus switched to an even stronger and more graphic word.  The word He then used (in John 6:54 and following) is trogo.  This word literally means “to gnaw, chew or crunch,” as even a Protestant study bible accessible on the internet will confirm.1  Therefore, to eradicate all doubt about the necessity to eat His flesh, Jesus switches to a word which means nothing but literal eating (“gnawing, chewing”).  The same word trogo is used to mean literal eating in Matthew 24:38 and John 13:18. 
John 6:54-56- “Whosoever eateth [trogo] my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.  For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.  He that eateth [trogo] my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.” 
In light of this evidence, it is absurd to argue that Jesus didn’t mean that people would actually eat His flesh and drink His blood. 
WHAT ABOUT JOHN 6:63? 
Faced with the overwhelming evidence in John 6 that the Eucharist is the actual body and blood of Jesus, certain non-Catholics will look for anything to combat it.  They will point to John 6:63.   
John 6:63- “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.” 
They claim this indicates that Jesus didn’t really mean that people will eat His flesh.  This claim does not hold up, however.  It is refuted by the following points.   
First, we know that Jesus is not talking about His flesh in the part of the verse where He says “the flesh profits nothing.”  Consider this question: is the flesh of Jesus of no profit?  What about His Incarnation?  How could He speak of His own flesh as profiting nothing, when He just said over and over (John 6:51, etc.) that His flesh is the life of the world?   
If Jesus was speaking of His flesh when He said that the flesh profits nothing, then He was contradicting Himself.  Jesus would have been saying that His flesh is the life of the world (John 6:51, etc.) just before telling them that “it profits nothing.”  That’s impossible and ridiculous.  Jesus was not speaking of His flesh when He said “the flesh profits nothing.”  
Second, Jesus says that people need to eat His flesh and drink His blood (and that His flesh is food) approximately ten times in this chapter.  Not once does He indicate that His meaning is not literal; nor does He do so here. 
Rather, by emphasizing to them that what He said about His flesh and blood is “spirit and life,” Jesus was dispelling their notion that all they should be concerned with is having flesh to eat for the sustenance of physical life.  The Eucharist is the actual flesh and blood of Jesus (as He makes clear), as well as His soul and divinity, but it primarily brings a spiritual endowment.  It is spirit and life.  It is primarily for the sustenance of spiritual life and having eternal life.   
It is not received for the purpose of filling a hungry stomach, but for the inestimable spiritual life and graces that it brings.  That’s what Jesus was telling them.  This is confirmed by the next point, which shows that even after His words in John 6:63, many of Jesus’ followers left Him over the “hard saying”                                                  1 http://www.studylight.org/lex/grk/view.cgi?number=5176
about His flesh and blood.  They realized that Jesus was telling them that they must eat His flesh and drink His blood, but they simply refused to accept it.   
AFTER TELLING THEM THAT THEY MUST EAT HIS FLESH AND DRINK HIS BLOOD, MANY OF HIS DISCIPLES LEFT HIM; THIS PROVES THAT IT WAS CLEAR TO ALL PRESENT THAT JESUS SAID AND MEANT THAT PEOPLE MUST EAT HIS FLESH  
John 6:60-68- “Many therefore of his disciples, when they had heard this, said, This is a hard saying; who can hear it?  When Jesus knew in himself that his disciples murmured at it, he said unto them, Doth this offend you?... From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him.  Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away?  Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go?  Thou hast the words of eternal life.” 
If Jesus did not really mean that people would eat His flesh and drink His blood, then He would have clarified His meaning and stopped these disciples from leaving Him over a misunderstanding.  He would have said something like this: “Wait, you misunderstood me.  I was only speaking symbolically.  I didn’t really mean that people would eat my flesh and drink my blood.”  But He doesn’t do anything of the sort.  He lets everyone who cannot accept His message walk away.  This is an overwhelming contextual indication that everyone understood that Jesus was speaking literally of the necessity to eat His flesh and drink His blood.  They simply couldn’t accept it, and Jesus wasn’t going to deny the truth or modify what He had told them. 
The fact that many of Jesus’ followers left Him over the necessity to eat His flesh and drink His blood is sadly illustrative of how this issue would, at different times in Church history, be a prime cause of people leaving the true faith of Jesus.  It happened again in the 16th century, when many left Jesus and His true faith because they refused to believe that the Eucharist is the actual body and blood of Jesus Christ.   
PROTESTANTS ADMIT THAT THE BLOOD OF THE PASSOVER LAMB MENTIONED IN EXODUS 12, WHICH THE HEBREWS HAD TO MARK THEIR DOORS WITH, SIGNIFIES JESUS AS THE LAMB OF GOD SLAIN FOR THE SINS OF THE WORLD; THEY DON’T REALIZE THAT GOD ALSO COMMANDED THE HEBREWS TO EAT THE PASSOVER LAMB 
In Exodus 12 we read that God commanded the Jews to mark their doors with the blood of a lamb.  The angel of death, passing through Egypt, would pass over the doors of the Hebrews which were marked with the blood.   
Exodus 12:13- “And the blood shall be unto you for a sign in the houses where you shall be: and I shall see the blood, and shall pass over you: and the plague shall not be upon you to destroy you, when I shall strike the land of Egypt.” 
Protestants and Catholics readily acknowledge that the blood of the Passover lamb (a real event) was also a type (a foreshadowing) of Jesus Christ, the true Passover Lamb.  He is the true Lamb who was slain.  His blood was poured out to save the world.  People must receive the merit of His passion to be saved.  The New Testament repeatedly declares that Jesus is the “Lamb of God” who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29; 1 Peter 1:19; Rev. 22:1; Rev. 15:3; etc.).  St. Paul specifically describes Jesus as the Passover lamb in 1 Corinthians 5:7. 
1 Corinthians 5:7- “Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened.  For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us.” 
John 1:29- “The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” 
There can be no doubt that the blood of the Passover lamb is a type of the blood of Jesus Christ, and that the Passover lamb is a type of Jesus Christ.  Now here’s the interesting part as it pertains to this issue. 
The Hebrews were not only commanded to mark their doors with the blood of the lamb; but they were also commanded to eat the lamb!   
Exodus 12:7-8- “And they shall take of the blood [of the lamb], and strike it on the two side posts and on the upper door post of the houses, wherein they shall eat it.  And they shall eat the flesh in that night…” 
Exodus 12:11- “And thus shall ye eat it; with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste: it is the Lord’s passover.” 
The necessity to consume the Passover lamb shows us the necessity to eat the flesh of the Son of man in the Eucharist.  It isn’t enough to be marked with the blood of the Lamb; one must also consume the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ, to be saved.  It’s necessary to receive Him in the Eucharist.  He becomes present at a valid Catholic Mass.  It’s also interesting that no one who was not of the family of God could eat the lamb (Exodus 12:43-45), just like no one who is not of the true faith can receive the Eucharist.    JESUS WORKED THE MIRACLE OF THE LOAVES AND FISHES THE DAY BEFORE TELLING THEM OF THE EUCHARIST IN ORDER TO SHOW EVERYONE THAT MIRACULOUS SUPERABUNDANCE IS POSSIBLE 
In the very same chapter that Jesus speaks so clearly of receiving His flesh and blood in the Eucharist, we read that He performed the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes.  
John 6:9-14- “… five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?  And Jesus said, Make the men sit down… So the men sat down, in number about five thousand.  And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.  When they were filled, he said unto his disciples, Gather up the fragments that remain, that nothing be lost.  Therefore they gathered them together, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the five barley loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten.  Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.” 
5000 people miraculously ate from what began as five barley loaves and two fishes.  Jesus performed this miracle the very day before He told them that they must receive His flesh and blood in the Eucharist.  By working this miracle just before He told them that they must receive His flesh and blood in the Eucharist, Jesus intended to show them that such a thing is possible.  For the concept of eating Jesus’ flesh and blood was completely new and mind-boggling to them.  In the same way, the idea that He would miraculously become present for people in many places was astonishing.  The miraculous multiplication of the food was intended to dispel their doubt, to win their complete confidence in His words before telling them about the miracle of the Eucharist.  The multiplication of the food indeed signified the miraculous food of the Eucharist, which is not bread but the body and blood of Christ. 
THE EUCHARIST CANNOT BE JUST ORDINARY BREAD; OTHERWISE IT WOULD BE INFERIOR TO ITS OLD TESTAMENT TYPE, THE MANNA IN THE DESERT, WHICH APPEARED SUPERNATURALLY   
There can be no doubt that the manna in the desert (Exodus 16) prefigured the Eucharist.  Jesus makes a connection between the two in John chapter 6.   
John 6:48-51- “I am that bread of life.  Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead.  This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.  I am the living bread which came down from heaven… and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” 
Jesus makes reference to the manna in the desert, and then says that His flesh is the true manna from Heaven.  The manna in the desert was bread, but bread which appeared miraculously.  It fell every day, except Saturday, for the 40 years that the Hebrews were in the desert.  It showed up as if it had fallen from Heaven. 
Exodus 16:15- “And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another: Manhu! which signifieth: What is this! for they knew not what it was.  And Moses said to them: This is the bread, which the Lord hath given you to eat.” 
The New Testament fulfillment is greater than the Old Testament type.  If, as the Protestants say, the Eucharist is just ordinary bread, then it would be inferior to the manna in the desert, which appeared miraculously.  It would be inferior to its Old Testament type.  That doesn’t make sense; it cannot be the case.  The Eucharist must be supernatural and miraculous in some way.   
JESUS SAYS: “THIS IS MY BODY” AND “THIS IS MY BLOOD”;  HE DOESN’T SAY: THIS IS JUST A SYMBOL OF MY BODY AND BLOOD 
Matthew 26:26-28- “And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.  And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” 
Mark 14:22-24- “And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body.  And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it.  And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many.” 
Luke 22:19-20- “And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.  Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.” 
The translations above are from the Protestant King James version of the Bible.  Even the Protestant translations show that Jesus proclaims the Eucharist to be His body and His blood.  There were many ways in Hebrew or Aramaic for Jesus to say “this represents my body,” or “this is a symbol of my body,” but He doesn’t.  He says “this is my body” and “this is my blood.” 
Moreover, contrary to what some think, the words “do this in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19) do not suggest that the Eucharist is just a symbol.  The Greek word for “remembrance” is anamnesis.  It has a sacrificial meaning.  It’s one of the sacrificial offerings of the Old Testament.  It means to make present again as a sacrificial offering.  Jesus is telling them to offer His actual body and blood to the Father as a memorial sacrifice. 
JESUS’ LANGUAGE CORRESPONDS TO THAT OF MOSES IN EXODUS 24, IN THE FOUNDING OF THE FIRST COVENANT, WHICH HAD REAL BLOOD 
The institution of the Eucharist (which we read about in Matthew 26, Mark 14, and Luke 22) clearly corresponds to the institution of the first covenant in Exodus 24. 
Exodus 24:8- “And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the Lord hath made with you concerning all these words.” 
Matthew 26:26-28- “And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.  And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” 
Notice the similarity of language between the institutions of the two covenants.  Jesus institutes the New Covenant in His blood on the same pattern that Moses instituted the first covenant.  The New Covenant of Jesus takes the place of the Old, and it will be the New and Everlasting covenant.  But if the blood referred to by Jesus isn’t real blood – but just a symbol, as the Protestants say – then the New Covenant would be inferior to the Old; for the institution of the Old Covenant involved real blood. 
1 CORINTHIANS 10 CLEARLY TEACHES THAT THE EUCHARIST IS A PARTICIPATION IN THE ACTUAL BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST 
1 Corinthians 10:16- “The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ?  The bread which we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ?” 
St. Paul is clear that the Eucharist is the actual body and blood of Jesus Christ.   
1 CORINITHIANS 11 SAYS THAT TO RECEIVE THE EUCHARIST UNWORTHILY IS TO SIN AGAINST THE ACTUAL BODY AND BLOOD OF THE LORD 
1 Corinthians 11:26-29- “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.  Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.  But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.  For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.” 
According to the clear teaching of the Bible, one who receives the Eucharist unworthily is guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.  St. Paul says that a person eats and drinks damnation by receiving the Eucharist without the proper dispositions and discernment.  If the Eucharist is just a piece of bread and some wine, taken in memory of Christ, how could one who receives it improperly be found guilty of the body and blood of the Lord?  One would obviously not be held guilty of the body and blood of Christ unless the Eucharist is indeed the body and blood of Christ.   
THE EARLY CHRISTIAN CHURCH UNANIMOUSLY BELIEVED THAT THE EUCHARIST IS THE BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST 
Besides the clear biblical evidence we’ve seen, the witness of the ancient Church unanimously supports Catholic teaching on the Eucharist.  Anyone who takes time to consult the fathers of the Church on this point will discover that they all believed that the Eucharist is the body and blood of Jesus Christ.   The fathers of the Church are the Christian writers from the earliest centuries.  They are those who received the tradition of the Apostles.   
The Protestant view of the Eucharist was foreign to the entire Christian Church for the first 1500 years of its existence.  I could quote many passages from the fathers of the Church on this matter, but I will only quote three.  In 110 A.D., St. Ignatius of Antioch (one of the apostolic fathers generally acknowledged by Protestants) said the following about a group of heretics who denied that the Eucharist is the flesh of Christ.  He was referring to the Docetists, who also denied the reality of the Incarnation and the Crucifixion. 
St. Ignatius of Antioch, Epistle to the Smyrnaeans, Chapter 7, 110 A.D.- “They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ, which suffered for our sins, and which the Father, of His goodness, raised up again.” 
St. Irenaeus, Against Heresies, Book 5, Chap. 2, 185 A.D.- "When, therefore, the mixed cup and the baked bread receives the Word of God and becomes the Eucharist, the body of Christ, and from these the substance of our flesh is increased and supported, how can they say that the
flesh is not capable of receiving the gift of God, which is eternal life--flesh which is nourished by the body and blood of the Lord, and is in fact a member of him?" 
St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Discourses, Mystagogic 1, 19:7, 350 A.D.- "For as the Bread and Wine of the Eucharist before the invocation of the Holy and Adorable Trinity were simple bread and wine, while after the invocation the Bread becomes the Body of Christ, and the Wine the Blood of Christ...” (http://mb-soft.com/believe/txuc/cyril48.htm) 
To deny the Catholic teaching on the Eucharist is simply to deny the clear teaching of Jesus Christ and the Bible.   

© 2008 Most Holy Family Monastery.  
www.mostholyfamilymonastery.com

jueves, 28 de diciembre de 2017

Holy Innocents, Martyrs - Santos Inocentes, Mártires.


ENGLISH:
We remember today the Innocent Children that the cruel Herod ordered to kill. According to the Gospel of St. Matthew, Herod called the High Priests to ask them in what exact place the king of Israel was to be born, to whom the prophets had announced. They replied: "It must be in Bethlehem, because the prophet Micah announced it, saying:" And you, Bethlehem, you are not the least among the cities of Judah, because the chief who will be the shepherd of my people will come from you. Israel "(Mic 5, 1). Then Herod set out to find out exactly where the child was, and then send his soldiers to kill him. And pretending, he said to the Wise Men: - "Go and find out about that child, when they find him they come back and inform me, so I can go and adore him". The magicians went to Bethlehem guided by the star that appeared to them again, when leaving Jerusalem, and full of joy they found the Divine Child Jesus next to the Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph; they worshiped him and offered him their gifts of gold, incense and myrrh. In dreams they received the divine warning that they did not return to Jerusalem and returned to their countries by other ways, and the perfidious Herod was left without knowing where the newborn was. This infuriated him to the extreme, so he surrounded with his army the small city of Bethlehem, and gave the order to kill all the little children under two years, in the city and surroundings. The same evangelist St. Matthew affirmed that on that day the prophet Jeremiah had been warned: "A shouting is heard in Ramah (near Bethlehem), it is Rachel (the wife of Israel) who cries to her children, and does not he wants to comfort, because they no longer exist "(Jer 31, 15).
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ESPAÑOL:
El día de hoy se conmemora a los Niños Inocentes que el cruel Herodes mandó matar.
Según señala el Evangelio de San Mateo, Herodes llamó a los Sumos Sacerdotes para preguntarles en qué sitio exacto iba a nacer el rey de Israel, al que habían anunciado los profetas. Ellos le contestaron: "Tiene que ser en Belén, porque así lo anunció el profeta Miqueas diciendo: "Y tú, Belén, no eres la menor entre las ciudades de Judá, porque de ti saldrá el jefe que será el pastor de mi pueblo de Israel" (Miq. 5, 1).
Entonces Herodes se propuso averiguar exactamente dónde estaba el niño, para después mandar a sus soldados a que lo mataran. Y fingiendo dijo a los Santos Reyes: - "Vayan y averiguen acerca de ese niño, cuando lo encuentren regresan y me lo informan, para ir yo también a adorarlo". Los magos se fueron a Belén guiados por la estrella que se les apareció otra vez, al salir de Jerusalén, y llenos de alegría encontraron al Divino Niño Jesús junto a la Virgen María y San José; lo adoraron y le ofrecieron sus regalos de oro, incienso y mirra. En sueños recibieron el aviso divino de que no volvieran a Jerusalén y regresaron a sus países por otros caminos, y el pérfido Herodes se quedó sin saber dónde estaba el recién nacido. Esto lo enfureció hasta el extremo, por lo que rodeó con su ejército la pequeña ciudad de Belén, y dio la orden de matar a todos los niñitos menores de dos años, en la ciudad y alrededores.
El mismo evangelista San Mateo afirmará que en ese día se cumplió lo que había avisado el profeta Jeremías: "Un griterío se oye en Ramá (cerca de Belén), es Raquel (la esposa de Israel) que llora a sus hijos, y no se quiere consolar, porque ya no existen" (Jer. 31, 15).
visite: vaticanocatolico.com 

miércoles, 27 de diciembre de 2017

聖なるおさな子たち殉教者


聖なるおさな子たち殉教者 Sts. Innocentes Mart.  祝日 12月28日
訪問するcatholickyokai.com 

 救世主の御降誕を不思議な星の出現によって知った東の国の三人の博士たちは、その星に導かれるままにエルサレムまで来、ユダヤ国王ヘロデに謁し、「お生まれになったユダヤの王はどこに居られますか」と尋ねた。ヘロデはこの言葉を聞いて大いに驚いたが、早速国中の学者を召し、いにしえの預言によれば、救い主はどこに生まれることになっているかと訊くと、彼等が答えて言うには「ベトレヘムに」との事であったので、ヘロデはその旨を三人の博士に告げ、「もし救い主となる嬰児が発見されたら私にも知らせてほしい、私も拝みに行くから」と言った。しかしこれは本心から出た言葉ではなく、救い主が将来自分の王位を奪いはせぬかという心配から、その所在が知れたらこれを殺して禍を未然に防ぐつもりであったのである。
 三人の博士たちはそれからベトレヘムに向かったが、一時見えなくなったあの不思議な星が再び空に現れ、彼等を導く如く先に立って動き、遂にイエズスのおいでになる厩の上に至って留まったから、三人の博士は喜んで中に入り、マリア、ヨゼフと共に在す嬰児を見、之こそ救い主よと、黄金、乳香、没薬を献げて礼拝した。
 所がその晩の夢に天使が現れ、ヘロデに邪心ある事を告げ、他の道から帰国させたので、ヘロデは待ちぼうけを喰わされて大いに怒り、兵卒を遣わして無惨にもベトレヘム及びその付近の、二歳以下の男の子を悉く殺させた。それは調べてみてあの不思議な星が現れてから二年以内と解ったからである。勿論全知なる天主は早くもこの事のあることを予期し、天使を以てその前夜ヨゼフに警告、即刻マリアとイエズスを伴いエジプトへ逃れしめ給うたから、救い主の御身には別状はなかったが、福音史家聖マタイは右の嬰児虐殺事件を簡明に報じた後、「かくて預言者エレミアに依りて言われたる事成就せり、曰くラマに声あり、嘆きにして大いなる叫びなりけり、ラケルその子等を嘆き、彼等の亡きに因り、敢えて慰めを容れず」と記している、即ちエレミアが、子を失ったヤコボの妻ラケルの嘆きを以て現した預言が見事適中し、暴君ヘロデに愛する幼子達を殺された母親達もラケルにおさおさ劣らぬ深刻な悲嘆愁傷を敬虔したというのである。
 当時の思想では、子供を殺すことは成人を殺すほど思い罪ではないとされていた。しかし自分の利益の為に天使の如く清い幼子の生命を、それも多数犠牲に供して顧みないヘロデの残虐さは実に鬼畜の心と言わざるを得ない。しかも彼のこの残虐性はただこの時のみに限らぬのである。試みにその数例を挙げてみればアウグスト皇帝の助力によりてユダヤ国を征服した時に多数の人を殺戮したのを手始めに、彼は自分の妃を十人も取り替えたが、その最初の王妃ドリスをその子アンチパテルと共に追放し、第二の王妃マリアムネを嫉妬から殺害すると同時に彼女との間に儲けた二子アレクサンデルとアリストブロとを縛り首にし、わが野心を遂げる為姪ベレニケの夫を殺し、神殿の門からローマ帝国の紋章黄金の鷲を没落した四十人の青年を火刑に処し、自分が死去する五日前にも、実子アンチパテルに死刑の宣告を与えるなど、数々の非道を行って少しも悔いる色がなかった。
 かようなヘロデが天主の厳しい御罰を免れる筈がない。彼は生きながら体が腐敗し、蛆に喰われて生命をおとした。それに引き換え彼に殺された罪なき嬰児達は救世主イエズス・キリストの御身代わりとなって、清い命を献げたのであるから、今は天国にあって主と永福を楽しみ、聖会は之を栄えある殉教者と仰ぎ、本日全世界に亘って記念し、さまざまの事、わけても無邪気な子供達の上に主の聖寵を願うのにその取り次ぎを求めている。

教訓
 我等はたとえ意外な艱難辛苦に逢うことがあっても決して不平を起こしたり呟いたりせず、一切が慈悲深い天父の御摂理であることを信じ、甘んじてその聖旨に従うよう心がけたいものである。

カトリック教会の外には絶対に救いがありません

St. John The Evangelist - San Juan Evangelista


ENGLISH:
Saint John the Evangelist, who is distinguished as "the beloved disciple of Jesus" and who is often called "the divine" (ie the "Theologian"), especially among the Greeks and in England, was a Jew from Galilee , son of Zebedeo and brother of Santiago el Mayor, with whom he worked as a fisherman. John (Greek: Ἰωάννης) means: "God is merciful."He has become very famous for having composed the Fourth Gospel.
Together with his brother James, John was mending the nets on the shore of the lake of Galilee, when Jesus, who had just called Peter and Andrew to his service, also called them to be his Apostles. Jesus Christ himself gave John and James the nickname of Boanerges, that is, "sons of thunder" (Luke 9, 54), although it is not clear whether he did so as a recommendation or because of the violence of his temper. It is said that Saint John was the youngest of the twelve Apostles and that he survived all the others. He is the only one of the Apostles who did not die martyred. In the Gospel that he wrote he refers to himself as "the disciple whom Jesus loved", and it is evident that he was one of the most intimate of Jesus. The Lord wanted him to be, together with Peter and James, at the moment of His transfiguration, as well as during His agony in the Garden of Olives. On many other occasions, Jesus showed John his predilection or special affection. Therefore, it is not strange from the human point of view that the wife of Zebedee asked the Lord to have his two sons sit next to Him, one on the right and the other on the left, in His Kingdom.
John was chosen to accompany Peter to the city in order to prepare the supper for the last Passover, and in the course of that last supper, John leaned his head on Jesus' chest and went to John, whom the Master indicated, notwithstanding that Peter formulated the question, the name of the disciple who would betray him. It is generally believed that it was John that "other disciple" who entered with Jesus before the tribunal of Caiaphas, while Peter stayed outside. John was the only one of the Apostles who stood at the foot of the cross with the Virgin Mary and the other pious women and it was he who received the sublime commission to take under his care the Mother of the Redeemer. "Woman, behold your son," Jesus murmured to his Mother from the cross. "Here is your mother," he told John. And from that moment, the disciple took it as his own. The Lord called us all brothers and he entrusted us with the loving care of His own Mother, but among all the adopted children of the Virgin Mary, Saint John was the first. Only he was given the privilege of physically bringing Mary into her own home as a true mother and honoring her, serving her and taking care of her in person.
visit: mostholyfamilymonastery.com

ESPAÑOL:
San Juan el Evangelista, a quien se distingue como "el discípulo amado de Jesús" y a quien a menudo le llaman "el divino" (es decir, el "Teólogo") sobre todo entre los griegos y en Inglaterra, era un judío de Galilea, hijo de Zebedeo y hermano de Santiago el Mayor, con quien desempeñaba el oficio de pescador.  Juan (Griego:Ἰωάννης) significa: "Dios es misericordioso". Se ha hecho muy famoso por haber compuesto el Cuarto Evangelio.
Junto con su hermano Santiago, se hallaba Juan remendando las redes a la orilla del lago de Galilea, cuando Jesús, que acababa de llamar a su servicio a Pedro y a Andrés, los llamó también a ellos para que fuesen sus Apóstoles. El propio Jesucristo les puso a Juan y a Santiago el sobrenombre de Boanerges, o sea "hijos del trueno" (Lucas 9, 54), aunque no está aclarado si lo hizo como una recomendación o bien a causa de la violencia de su temperamento.
Se dice que San Juan era el más joven de los doce Apóstoles y que sobrevivió a todos los demás. Es el único de los Apóstoles que no murió martirizado.
En el Evangelio que escribió se refiere a sí mismo, como "el discípulo a quien Jesús amaba", y es evidente que era de los más íntimos de Jesús. El Señor quiso que estuviese, junto con Pedro y Santiago, en el momento de Su transfiguración, así como durante Su agonía en el Huerto de los Olivos. En muchas otras ocasiones, Jesús demostró a Juan su predilección o su afecto especial. Por consiguiente, nada tiene de extraño desde el punto de vista humano, que la esposa de Zebedeo pidiese al Señor que sus dos hijos llegasen a sentarse junto a Él, uno a la derecha y el otro a la izquierda, en Su Reino.
Juan fue el elegido para acompañar a Pedro a la ciudad a fin de preparar la cena de la última Pascua y, en el curso de aquella última cena, Juan reclinó su cabeza sobre el pecho de Jesús y fue a Juan a quien el Maestro indicó, no obstante que Pedro formuló la pregunta, el nombre del discípulo que habría de traicionarle. Es creencia general la de que era Juan aquel "otro discípulo" que entró con Jesús ante el tribunal de Caifás, mientras Pedro se quedaba afuera. Juan fue el único de los Apóstoles que estuvo al pie de la cruz con la Virgen María y las otras piadosas mujeres y fue él quien recibió el sublime encargo de tomar bajo su cuidado a la Madre del Redentor. "Mujer, he ahí a tu hijo", murmuró Jesús a su Madre desde la cruz. "He ahí a tu madre", le dijo a Juan. Y desde aquel momento, el discípulo la tomó como suya. El Señor nos llamó a todos hermanos y nos encomendó el amoroso cuidado de Su propia Madre, pero entre todos los hijos adoptivos de la Virgen María, San Juan fue el primero. Tan sólo a él le fue dado el privilegio de llevar físicamente a María a su propia casa como una verdadera madre y honrarla, servirla y cuidarla en persona.
visite: vaticanocatolico.com


martes, 26 de diciembre de 2017

使徒聖ヨハネ福音史家


 使徒聖ヨハネ福音史家 St. Joannes Ap. Evangelista 祝日 12月27日
訪問するcatholickyokai.com  

 第四の聖福音を著した使徒聖ヨハネは、鷲をその象徴とされている。これは何故かというと他の三福音史家マタイ、マルコ及びルカ等は、いずれも主イエズス・キリストの救世の御事業に就き記しただけなのに、独りヨハネは救い主の神性を示すという更に高い目的を以て筆を執った。それがあらゆる鳥よりも高く飛翔する鷲を忍ばせるからである。なお使徒聖ヨハネはその人格に於いても他の使徒達に卓越して特別主の御寵愛を蒙っていたことは、その聖書中に「イエズスの愛し給える一人の弟子(ヨハネを示す)御懐あたりに寄りかかりいたり」とあるによっても想像できよう。
 このヨハネは以前洗礼者ヨハネの熱心な弟子で、他のユダヤ人と同様預言された救世主の来たり給う日を、千秋の思いで待ち侘びていた。所がある日師のヨハネが、イエズスの御姿をお見かけして「見よ、神の子羊を、見よ、世の罪を除き給う者を」と指し示し、その約束された救い主であることを教えてくれたから、ヨハネは早速ペトロの兄弟アンドレアと共に主の最初の御弟子となったが、彼はそれをどれほど喜ばしく思ったのであろう、始めて主の御宿を訪れた時刻さえ忘れず「時は4時頃なりき」と書き残している。
 ヨハネは使徒達の中でもペトロや大ヤコボと共に主イエズスから殊遇をかたじけのうした一人であった。それはヤイロの娘の蘇生にも、タボル山における主の御変容にも、立ち会う恵みを戴いたのはこの3人の外になかった事によっても明らかである。勿論ヨハネはこの御愛顧に対し深い感謝の念を抱き、誠心尽くして主をお愛し申し上げていた。さればこそ主がサマリアのある町で冷遇され給うた時兄ヤコボと憤慨の余り「主よ、天から火を下して無礼な彼奴等を焼き殺しましょうか」というような激越な言葉も口にしたのである。主はその時叱って「汝等は精神の持ち方が誤っている。人の子が来たのは魂を滅ぼす為ではなく、これを救う為である」と教え給うたが、それでも彼等の御自分に対する愛は嬉しく思われたに相違ない。なおこの話の外に、主がヨハネとヤコボをボアゲルネス即ち雷の子とあだ名し給うた事などを思い合わせてもヨハネが普通想像されているような女に見まがうばかり優しい青年ではなく却って気象の激しい、豪快な青年であったことがわかるであろう。そういう性質であったからこそ主に「汝等は私の飲まんとする苦痛の盃を飲み干すことが出来るか?とのお尋ねを受けて、彼等兄弟は「出来ます!」とお答えしたのであった。
 しかしいよいよ主の御受難が始まると、そのヤコボも失望落胆して逃げ、使徒のかしらペトロも大恩ある主を3度まで「知らぬ」と言い張り、その他の使徒達もコソコソ何処かへ姿を隠すという不甲斐なさであったが、その中にあって独りヨハネだけは雄々しくも踏みとどまり、聖母のお伴をして主をカルワリオの丘までお見送り申し上げたのである。
 そして彼がそこに目撃したものは何であったろう?それは嘗てタボル山上で仰ぎ見た御栄光の主とは似ても似つかぬ、悲惨を極めたイエズス御苦悩の有り様であった。しかもそれを露憐れむ気色もなく嘲り罵る悪党輩の声。激し易いヨハネの胸はさながら張り裂けるばかりであった。しかし彼は主の御苦しみが救世に必要である事をわきまえ。自分もその心の苦痛をじっと耐え忍び共に犠牲を献げた。
 その忠実さを主がよみし給わぬ筈はない。主はその報酬として彼に聖い御母の将来を託された。ヨハネはこの重任をどれ程名誉にも思い心嬉しくも思ったであろう。その日から彼は聖マリアをわが許にお引き取りしてまめまめしくお仕えしたのである。彼の著した聖福音が他の記者のそれとは大いに趣を異にし、イエズスの神性に対する深い認識に珠玉の如く輝いているのは聖霊の御導きもさることながら、彼が日常聖母の側近に奉仕して種々御教示を賜わったお陰ではなかろうか。
 言い伝えによれば聖マリアは思いで多いカルワリオを見捨てるに忍びず、余生をエルサレムで過ごされたそうであるが、ヨハネはその御臨終まで懇ろに御介抱申し上げ、主の御遺言を果たした後、西暦44年ヘロデ・アグリッパの迫害に使徒達が各国へ別れ赴いた時、エフェゾに行き、そこから小アジアの緒教会、殊に黙示録にも記してあるエフェゾ、スミルナ、ベルガモ、チアチラ、サルディス、フィラデルフィア、ラオヂケアの7教会を指導した。
 95年第二のネロと呼ばれる暴君ドミニチアノの迫害が始まるや。老使徒ヨハネもその槍玉に上げられパトモス島へ流されたが、彼はそこで天主から直接啓示を受けて筆を執り、あの有名な黙示録を著し、聖会将来の勝利を預言して、苦しみつつある信者に深い慰めと新たなる勇気とを与えた。

 96年ドミチアノが暗殺され、次いで帝位に昇ったネルワは、追放されたキリスト信者達をことごとく召還したから、ヨハネも再び懐かしいエフェゾの地を踏むことが出来た。その頃彼はもう非常な高齢であったが、それでも生き残った唯一の使徒としてなお及ぶ限り信徒を教え導く事に努めた。老衰の為説教らしい説教が出来なくなってからも、彼は弟子達に聖堂へ連れて行って貰い、「わが子よ互いに愛し合いなさい」と信者達に説いて已まなかった。あまりいつも同じ言葉を繰り返すので信者が不満げな面持ちをすると、ヨハネが言うには「愛徳はキリスト教の基礎で、人は愛徳さえ十分守っていれば決して罪に陥ることがないからである」と。まことに之は愛の使徒と呼ばれる彼に相応しい言葉ではないか。
 彼がその貴重な聖福音書を著したのは1世紀の終わり頃で、グノーシスの異端その他イエズスの神性に就き種々の説が起こった時代であった。故に彼の著書の目的が既述の如くその蒙を啓き、正しきを教えるため、即ち救い主の天主である事を明らかにする為であったことは当然であったのである。かくて天主から託された使命をことごとく果たした使徒聖ヨハネはトラヤノ皇帝の御代ほとんど百歳の高齢でこの逐謫の浮き世を去り寵愛深い主の待ち給う天国に赴いたのであった。

教訓
 使徒聖ヨハネの偉大な生涯の事蹟数々の実徳をつぶさに考えて見れば、ことごとく愛の一字につきる。故に我等も彼に倣おうと思えば、その訓言の如く、一にも愛、二にも愛、三にも愛を心がけることが大切である。

カトリック教会の外には絶対に救いがありません

St. Stephen, Protomartyr - San Esteban, Protomártir




ENGLISH:
Saint Stephen is called "protomartyr" because he was the first martyr of all Catholic history. St. Stephen was one of the trusted men of the Apostles; he spoke and defended Jesus very well, which generated some confusion among the Jews. For this reason, the tradition states that he was taken before the Supreme Court of the Nation, the Sanhedrin, to be accused with false witnesses, who argued that Stephen affirmed that Jesus was going to destroy the temple and to put an end to the laws of Moses. However, the saint was not frightened, and instead, gave an impressive speech in which he recalled the entire history of the people of Israel (Acts 7) and through which he exhorted the Jews to rectify, rebuking them for having reached the end of not only not recognizing the Savior, but having also crucified. Filled with anger, they dragged him out of the city and stoned him. Those who stoned him left their clothes with a young man named Saul (the future Saint Paul who will be converted by the prayers of this martyr) and who approved that crime. While they were stoning him, Stephen said: "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." And on his knees he said with a loud voice: "Lord, do not take this sin into account." And saying this, he died. The Christians rescued him and gave his body a worthy burial.

Prayer to Saint Stephen:
Blessed are you Stephen: for proclaiming your love for Christ on earth you went to accompany Him in Heaven.
Make us many, many who our words and good deeds we declare ourselves friends and followers of Jesus in this life and let us be His companions in the eternal joy of Heaven. Amen.
visit: mostholyfamilymonastery.com


ESPAÑOL:
A San Esteban se le llama "protomartir" porque fue el primer mártir de toda la historia católica. San Esteban era uno de los hombres de confianza de los apóstoles; habló y defendió muy bien a Jesús, que entre los judíos generó cierto desconcierto. Por tal razón, la tradición señala que fue llevado ante el Tribunal Supremo de la Nación, el Sanedrín, para ser acusado con falsos testigos, los cuales argumentaron que Esteban afirmaba que Jesús iba a destruir el templo y a acabar con las leyes de Moisés.
Sin embargo, el santo no se atemorizó, y por el contrario, pronunció un impresionante discurso en el cual fue recordando toda la historia del pueblo de Israel (Hechos 7) y a través del cual exhortó a los judíos a rectificar, reprendiéndolos por haber llegado al extremo de no sólo no reconocer al Salvador, sino de haberlo además crucificado.
Llenos de ira, éstos lo arrastraron fuera de la ciudad y lo apedrearon.
Los que lo apedreaban dejaron sus vestidos junto a un joven llamado Saulo (el futuro San Pablo que se convertirá por las oraciones de este mártir) y que aprobaba aquel delito. Mientras lo apedreaban, Esteban decía: "Señor Jesús, recibe mi espíritu". Y de rodillas dijo con fuerte voz: "Señor, no les tengas en cuenta este pecado". Y diciendo esto, murió.
Los cristianos lo rescataron y dieron a su cuerpo digna sepultura.

Oración a San Esteban:
Dichoso tú Esteban: que por proclamar tu amor a Cristo
 en la tierra te fuiste a acompañarlo a Él en el cielo.
Haz que seamos muchos, muchísimos los que con
nuestras palabras y buenas obras nos declaremos
amigos y seguidores de Jesús en esta vida y
seamos sus compañeros en el gozo eterno del Paraíso.
Amén.
visite: vaticanocatolico.com

lunes, 25 de diciembre de 2017

聖ステファノ助祭殉教者




聖ステファノ助祭殉教者 St. Stephanus Diaconus Protomartyr. 祝日 12月26日

訪問するcatholickyokai.com 

 「誠に実に汝等に告ぐ、麦の粒地に落ちて、もし死ざれば唯一つにして止まるも、もし死すれば多くの実を結ぶ」
主のこの聖言は誰よりもまず主御自身に適合する。何となれば、主が十字架上で聖血を流し世の罪を贖い給うたればこそその御功徳を蒙って救霊の恵みに浴洗ものと、聖霊降臨の日に受洗した3000人を始め、その後も続々聖教に帰依する者が出たからである。そしてこれら教会初代の信者達は互いに口で兄弟姉妹と呼び合うばかりでなく、実際同心一致、各自自発的に財産を教会に寄付して共同生活を営み、食糧などは必要に応じて使徒達から配給を受け、何物をも共有として信仰に精励した。されば世人は彼等の友愛の麗しさに感じ入り、自分もその仲間入りがしたいものと、洗礼を受ける者はいよいよ増加する一方であった。
 所がかように信徒の殖え行くにつれ、ギリシャ生まれのユダヤ人達が毎日の食糧の分配に漏れたなどと不平をこぼすようになったから、信徒達は向後布教の本務に専念する為、食物の配給その他の雑務をつかさどらせる執事7人を弟子達の中から選ばせ、之に按手して祈り叙階式を行ったが、その筆頭こそ使徒行録に「信仰と聖霊とに充てる者」と称讃してある聖ステファノであったのである。
 執事は今で言えば助祭に当たり、右に記した務の外に説教を行い正式の洗礼を授けるなどをもその職分としたが、ステファノは殊にクレネ、アレクサンドリア、シシリア、小アジア出身の、いわゆる分散地のユダヤ人達の会堂で勇敢に布教して、しばしば彼等と議論を闘わせ常に聖霊の御助けにより彼等の蒙をひらき、また奇蹟を行う能力をも与えられて多大の成功を収めた。
 それでユダヤ教の祭司たちは彼を蛇蝎の如く忌み嫌い、ある人々を教唆して、彼が天主を冒涜しモーセの教えに背くような事を言ったと訴えさせ、彼を捕らえて衆議所に引き出し、なお人を立てて「この人は、あのナザレトのイエズスがエルサレムの神殿を打ち壊すとか、モーセの律法を変更するとかいっていました」と偽証させ、以て彼を死刑にしようと企てた。
 その時ステファノは天使の如く光り輝く顔を挙げて言うよう「諸君は何故心を頑なにしていつまでも聖霊の勧めに背いているのです。諸君の祖先は預言者達を迫害し、諸君の救い主の預言を信ぜず遂に真の天主なるイエズス・キリストを十字架につけて殺してしまった。のみならず諸君は表面モーセの律法を尊重するような振りを見せながら偽善に流れて内実は少しもそれを守っていないではありませんか。私は今明らかに天が開けて天主の右に坐し給う人の子、イエズス・キリストを仰ぎ見て居ります」と。
 これを聞くやモーセの律法学者、ユダヤ教の祭司長、長老達は、痛い所を突かれて猛り立ち、恐ろしい冒涜の言葉よと耳を覆い、声高く叫びつつ人々と共に打ちかかり、ステファノを町から追い出して石を投げつけ殺そうとした。しかしステファノは礫の雨を身に浴びながらも、従容として「主イエズスよ、我が霊魂をお受け取り下さい!と祈り、また跪いて大声を挙げ「主よ、彼等はその為す所を知らぬ者でございますから、この罪を彼等に負わせず、赦し給え!」と叫んだかと思うとそのまま息絶えた。これ実に聖霊降臨に由り成立した聖会が出した光栄ある最初の殉教者に他ならなかったのである。
 けれどもステファノの生命の犠牲は決して無駄にはならなかった。天主は彼の壮烈な最期をよみして、その臨終の祈りを聴き入れ、豊かな聖寵を降してその時ステファノの死刑に賛成したサウロという青年を改心せしめ給うた。これこそ熱烈な信仰に燃え立ち異邦人に福音を述べ伝え、多くの霊魂を救い、ついにステファノの如く天晴れな殉教致命の栄冠を頂いた大使徒聖パウロであった事を思えば、ステファノの血潮は実に偉大な実を結んだというべきではないか。
 さて初殉教者ステファノの遺骸は、敬虔なキリスト信者の手によって懇ろに葬られたが、その後打ち続いた迫害騒ぎに、その墓の所在もいつか忘れられ湮滅した。しかるに416年不思議に再び発見され、且つその時数多の奇蹟が起こったから、皇后オイクドシアは感に堪えず、聖ステファノを称える為その殉教の場所に壮麗な大聖堂を建立寄進された。


教訓
 ステファノとは「冠」の意味であるという。彼が聖会最初に致命者として殉教の栄冠を勝ち得たのは、真にその名人を欺かぬと言わねばならぬ。それにつけても我々は殉教致命の栄誉は兎に角、彼の熱烈な信仰に肖り、世の誘惑に打ち克って、せめて永福の冠だけは是非手に入れたいものである。

カトリック教会の外には絶対に救いがありません

domingo, 24 de diciembre de 2017

History of the Nativity Scene - Historia del Pesebre (Belén o Nacimiento)



ESPAÑOL:
El pesebre lo inventó San Francisco de Asís, el santo de la humildad y de la pobreza, en la Navidad de 1223, hace muchos años ya, en el pueblecito de Greccio, en Italia.
San Francisco estaba débil y enfermo, y pensando que tal vez aquella sería su última Navidad en la tierra, quiso celebrarla de una manera distinta y muy especial.
Un amigo de Francisco, el señor Juan Velita, era dueño de un pequeño bosque en las montañas de Greccio, y en el bosque había una gruta que a Francisco se le parecía mucho a la cuevita donde nació Jesús, en los campos de Belén, y que él había conocido hacía poco en su viaje a Tierra Santa.
San Francisco habló con su amigo, le contó su idea de hacer allí un “pesebre vivo”, y juntos lo prepararon todo, en secreto, para que fuera una sorpresa para los habitantes del pueblo, niños y grandes.

Entre la gente del pueblo, Francisco y Juan escogieron algunas personas para que representaran a María, a José, y a los pastores; les hicieron prometer que no dirían nada a nadie antes de la Navidad, y, siguiendo el relato del Evangelio de San Lucas, prepararon la escena del nacimiento. ¡Hasta consiguieron un hermoso bebé para que representara a Jesús!
La noche de Navidad, cuando todas las familias estaban reunidas en sus casas, las campanas de la iglesia empezaron a tocar solas…  ¡Tocaban y tocaban como si hubiera una celebración especial!… Pero nadie sabía qué estaba pasando… El Párroco del pueblo no había dicho que fuera a celebrar la  Misa del Gallo… la Misa de Medianoche….
Sorprendidos y asustados a la vez, todos los habitantes de Greccio salieron de sus casas para ver qué estaba sucediendo… Entonces vieron a Francisco que desde la montaña los llamaba, y les indicaba que subieran donde él estaba.

Alumbrándose con antorchas, porque la noche estaba muy oscura y hacía mucho frío, todos se dirigieron al lugar indicado, y cuando llegaron quedaron tan admirados, que cayeron de rodillas, porque estaban viendo algo que nunca habían pensado poder ver. Era como si el tiempo hubiera retrocedido muchos, muchos años, y se encontraran en Belén, celebrando la primera Navidad de la historia: María tenía a Jesús en sus brazos, y José, muy entusiasmado, conversaba con un grupo de pastores y pastoras, que no se cansaban de admirar al niño que había acabado de nacer…
Después, cuando todos se calmaron, el sacerdote, que había sido cómplice de Francisco y de Juan Velita en aquel secreto, celebró la Santa Misa, y Jesús se hizo presente en el Pan y el Vino consagrados, como pasa siempre que se celebra una Misa Tradicional en cualquier lugar del mundo.
Terminada la Eucaristía, Francisco, lleno de amor y de alegría, les contó a todos los presentes, con lujo de detalles, la hermosa historia de la Navidad, y Jesús, “luz del mundo”, llenó sus corazones de paz y de amor.
Tres años más tarde, Francisco de Asís murió, dejándonos esta hermosa costumbre de hacer el pesebre todos los años, que a todos nos gusta tanto.
En España será el rey Carlos III quién introduzca la tradición de los belenes que más tarde se extenderá por toda Europa durante los siglos XVII y XVIII.
visite: vaticanocatolico.com 

ENGLISH: 
The Nativity Scene was invented by Saint Francis of Assisi, the saint of humility and poverty, at Christmas 1223, many years ago, in the small village of Greccio, in Italy. Francis was weak and sick, and thinking that maybe that would be his last Christmas on earth, he wanted to celebrate it in a different and very special way. A friend of Francis, Mr. Juan Velita, owned a small forest in the mountains of Greccio, and in the forest there was a grotto that Francis thought it looked much like the cave where Jesus was born, in the fields of Bethlehem, and that he had recently met on his trip to the Holy Land. St. Francis spoke with his friend, told him his idea of ​​making a "living manger" there, and together they prepared everything, in secret, to be a surprise to the villagers, children and adults.

Among the townspeople, Francis and Juan chose some people to represent Mary, Joseph, and the pastors; they made them promise that they would not say anything to anyone before Christmas, and, following the story of the Gospel of St. Luke, prepared the scene of the birth. They even got a beautiful baby to represent Jesus! Christmas night, when all the families were gathered in their homes, the bells of the church began to play alone ... They played and played as if there was a special celebration! ... But nobody knew what was happening ... The parish priest had not said that he was going to celebrate the Midnight Mass ....
Surprised and frightened at the same time, all the inhabitants of Greccio left their houses to see what was happening ... Then they saw Francis calling from the mountain, and he told them to go up where he was.

Illuminating themselves with torches, because the night was very dark and very cold, everyone went to the right place, and when they arrived they were so admired, that they fell on their knees, because they were seeing something they had never thought they could see. It was as if time had receded many, many years, and they were in Bethlehem, celebrating the first Christmas in history: Mary had Jesus in her arms, and Joseph, very excited, was talking with a group of pastors, they never got tired of admiring the child who had just been born ...
Then, when everyone calmed down, the priest, who had been an accomplice of Francis and Juan Velita in that secret, celebrated the Holy Mass, and Jesus made himself present in the consecrated Bread and Wine, as is always the case when a Traditional Mass is celebrated anywhere in the world. After the Eucharist, Francis, full of love and joy, told everyone present, in great detail, the beautiful story of Christmas, and Jesus, "light of the world," filled their hearts with peace and love. Three years later, Francis of Assisi died, leaving us this beautiful custom of making the manger every year, which we all like so much.
King Charles III introduced the tradition of nativity scenes in Spain and that will later spread throughout Europe during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
visit: mostholyfamilymonastery.com
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domingo, 17 de diciembre de 2017

About Friday Abstinence and The Lord's Day Laws - Sobre la abstinencia de los viernes y las leyes del Día del Señor



ENGLISH:
Video about the Friday Abstinence: Catholics must abstain from eating meat on all Fridays of the year.
And about The Lord's Day Laws: Catholics cannot work or buy on Sundays.
This video also explains how worldlings profane The Lord's Day by making money out of professional sport events and other entertainments.
visit: mostholyfamilymonastery.com

ESPAÑOL:
Video sobre la Abstinencia de los Viernes: los católicos no pueden comer carne ningún viernes del año.
Y sobre las leyes del Día del Señor: los católicos no pueden trabajar o comprar los Domingos.
Este video también explica como los mundanos profanan el Día del Señor al hacer dinero con los eventos deportivos y otros entretenimientos.
visite: vaticanocatolico.com


miércoles, 13 de diciembre de 2017

Sancta Lucia


ENGLISH:

St. Lucy's history has been lost and all we really know for certain is that this brave woman who lived in Syracuse lost her life during the persecution of Christians in the early fourth century. Her veneration spread to Rome so that by the sixth century the whole Church recognized her courage in defense of the faith.
Because people wanted to shed light on Lucy's bravery, legends began to crop up. The one that has passed the test of time tells the story of a young Christian woman who vowed to live her life in service of Christ. Her mother tried to arrange a marriage for her with a pagan and Lucy knew her mother could not be swayed by a young girl's vow, so she devised a plan to convince her mother that Christ was the better partner for life.
After several prayers at the tomb of Saint Agatha, Lucy saw the saint in a dream. St. Agatha told Lucy her mother's illness would be cured through faith, which Lucy used to persuade her mother to give the dowry money to the poor and allow her to commit her life to God.
While Lucy and her mother were grateful to God, the rejected bridegroom was deeply angered and betrayed Lucy's faith to the governor Paschasius. The governor attempted to force her into defilement at a brothel, but the guards who came to take her away were unable to move her, even after hitching her to a team of oxen.

The guards heaped bundles of wood around her but it wouldn't burn so they finally resorted to their swords, and Lucy met her death.
Though details of her life remain unknown, it is widely known that during her lifetime Christians were persecuted for their faith. They were forced to endure horrific torture and often met painful ends during Diocletian's reign. Though the details surrounding her death remain only as legends, it is all modern-day Christians can rely on.
Lucy's legend did not end with her death. According to later accounts, Lucy warned Paschasius he would be punished. When the governor heard this he ordered the guards to gouge out her eyes; however, in another telling, it was Lucy who removed her eyes in an attempt to discourage a persistent suitor who greatly admired them.
When her body was being prepared for burial, they discovered her eyes had been restored.
Sigebert (1030-1112), a monk of Gembloux, wrote sermo de Sancta Lucia, in which he described Lucy's body as remaining undisturbed in Sicily for 400 years until Faroald II, Duke of Spoleto, seized the island and transferred Lucy's remains to Abruzzo, Italy. It was later removed by Emperor Otho I in 972 to Metz and left in the church of St. Vincent. There is much confusion about what happened to her body after its stay at St. Vincent's, but it is believed that several pieces of her body can be found in Rome, Naples, Verona, Lisbon, Milan, Germany, France and Sweden.
In 1981, thieves stole all but her head but police were able to recover them on her feast day.
Lucy, whose name can mean "light" or "lucid," is the patron saint of the blind. She is often seen with the emblem of eyes on a cup or plate. In paintings, she is often depicted with a golden plate holding her eyes and often holds a palm branch, which is a symbol of victory over evil.

Saint Lucy's Prayer: 
Saint Lucy, you did not hide your light under a basket, but let it shine for the whole world, for all the centuries to see. We may not suffer torture in our lives the way you did, but we are still called to let the light of our Christianity illumine our daily lives. Please help us to have the courage to bring our Christianity into our work, our recreation, our relationships, our conversation -- every corner of our day. Amen

For further information visit:  mostholyfamilymonastery.com

ESPAÑOL:

La historia de Santa Lucía se ha perdido y lo único que sabemos con certeza es que esta valiente mujer que vivía en Siracusa perdió la vida durante la persecución de los cristianos a principios del siglo IV. Su veneración se extendió a Roma para que en el siglo VI toda la Iglesia reconociera su coraje en defensa de la fe. Debido a que la gente quería arrojar luz sobre la valentía de Lucía, las leyendas comenzaron a surgir. El que ha pasado la prueba del tiempo cuenta la historia de una joven cristiana que juró vivir su vida al servicio de Cristo. Su madre intentó arreglar un matrimonio para ella con un pagano y Lucía sabía que su madre no podía ser influenciada por el voto de una joven, así que ideó un plan para convencer a su madre de que Cristo era el mejor compañero de por vida. Después de varias oraciones en la tumba de Santa Águeda, Lucía vio a la santa en un sueño. Santa Águeda le dijo a Lucía que la enfermedad de su madre se curaría mediante la fe, que Lucía usó para persuadir a su madre de que diera el dinero de la dote a los pobres y le permitiera entregar su vida a Dios. Mientras Lucía y su madre estaban agradecidas a Dios, el novio rechazado estaba profundamente enojado y denunció la fe de Lucía al gobernador Pascasio. El gobernador intentó forzarla a la impureza en un burdel, pero los guardias que vinieron a llevársela no pudieron moverla, incluso después de atarla a una yunta de bueyes.

Los guardias apilaban fardos de madera a su alrededor pero no se quemaban, así que finalmente recurrieron a sus espadas, y Lucía se encontró con su muerte. Aunque los detalles de su vida permanecen desconocidos, es ampliamente conocido que durante su vida los cristianos fueron perseguidos por su fe. Fueron forzados a soportar horribles torturas y con frecuencia encontraron extremos dolorosos durante el reinado de Diocleciano. Aunque los detalles que rodean su muerte permanecen solo como leyendas, es todo en lo que los cristianos modernos pueden confiar. La leyenda de Lucy no terminó con su muerte. Según relatos posteriores, Lucía le advirtió a Pascasio que sería castigado. Cuando el gobernador oyó esto, ordenó a los guardias que le arrancaran los ojos. Sin embargo, en otra narración, fue Lucía quien le quitó los ojos en un intento de desalentar a un pretendiente persistente que los admiraba mucho. Cuando su cuerpo estaba siendo preparado para el entierro, descubrieron que sus ojos habían sido restaurados. Sigebert (1030-1112), un monje de Gembloux, escribió el sermo de Sancta Lucía, en el que describió el cuerpo de Lucy como permaneciendo sin perturbaciones en Sicilia durante 400 años hasta que Faroald II, duque de Spoleto, tomó la isla y transfirió los restos de Lucy a Abruzzo, Italia. Más tarde fue removido por el Emperador Otón I en 972 a Metz y dejado en la iglesia de San Vicente. Hay mucha confusión sobre lo que le sucedió a su cuerpo después de su estadía en la Iglesia de San Vicente, pero se cree que varias piezas de su cuerpo se pueden encontrar en Roma, Nápoles, Verona, Lisboa, Milán, Alemania, Francia y Suecia. En 1981, ladrones robaron todos menos su cabeza, pero la policía pudo recuperarlos en su día de fiesta. Lucía, cuyo nombre puede significar "liviano" o "lúcido", es el santo patrón de los ciegos. A menudo se la ve con el emblema de los ojos en una taza o plato. En las pinturas, a menudo se la representa con un plato dorado que sostiene sus ojos y con frecuencia sostiene una rama de palma, que es un símbolo de la victoria sobre el mal.

Oración a Santa Lucía:
Santa Lucía, no escondiste tu luz debajo de una canasta, sino que dejaste que brille por todo el mundo, por todos los siglos para ver. Puede que no suframos torturas en nuestras vidas de la manera en que lo hiciste, pero todavía estamos llamados a dejar que la luz de nuestro cristianismo ilumine nuestras vidas diarias. Por favor ayúdanos a tener el coraje de llevar nuestro cristianismo a nuestras obras, nuestras recreaciones, nuestras relaciones, nuestras conversaciones, en cada rincón de nuestros días. Amén

Para más información visite: vaticanocatolico.com

martes, 12 de diciembre de 2017

聖ルチアおとめ殉教者


 さらに詳しくはcatholickyokai.com    

記念日 12月13日

 聖ルチアは初代キリスト教会の偉大な殉教童貞であって、聖アガタ、聖アグネス、聖セシリアなどと共にミサ典文にも諸聖人の連祷にもその名を記されている。ルチアとは「光明」という意味であるから、実際聖会の光となった彼女に、最も相応しい名前ということが出来よう。
 彼女は前後300年間の長きに亘ったローマ帝国のキリスト教迫害末期シシリー島のシラクサで生まれ、ディオゥレチアノ皇帝の御代壮烈な死を遂げた。両親はいずれもカトリック信者で、彼女を手中の珠といつくしみ育てたが、父は早く世を去ったので、母オイチキアは娘の身を堅めようと、折柄申し込みのあった某貴族の縁談を承諾した。然るにルチアは既に天主に身を献げ、終生童貞を守る誓願を立てていたから、これを聞いて大いに当惑したものの、その事を打ち明けては母の心を苦しめるばかりと一人小さい胸に案じ煩い窃かに天主の御配慮を希っていた。
 所が間もなく母が病気に罹り、一進一退なかなか快復しなかった。すると親切な近所の人が、50年ほど前に殉職した聖女アガタの墓では、よく奇跡的に病人が治るから、貴女も参詣してその御取り次ぎを願って見てはどうかと勧めてくれたので、彼女もその気になり、娘ルチアに付き添われて同聖女の墓参りをし、共々熱心に祈った所、なるほどさしもの難病もたちまち薄紙を剥ぐように全快してしまった。伝説によれば、その時聖アガタがルチアに現れ、「貴方は自分で天主様にお願いして母上の病気を治すことが出来るのに、どうして私に取り次ぎを求めたのです?」と言ったとの事である。
 さてルチア母子はこの奇蹟に一方ならず打ち喜び、天主や聖女に心からの感謝を献げたが、ルチアは今こそ日頃の秘密を打ち明ける絶好の機会と、「この御恩報じに何かよい事をせねばならぬと思いますが、実は私、もう余程前から終生童貞を守る誓願を立てておりますので、その通り一生を送りたいと思います」と話した。母はこの言葉に一時は大いに驚いたけれど、根が信仰の篤い人だけに、やがて快く娘の望みを許したが、ただ結婚の為の財産を今すぐ貧民に施そうというルチアの考えには反対して、臨終に遺言して死後これを寄付するがよいと勧めた。しかし超自然の光に心を照らされたルチアは「それでも善業は死んでからするより活きている中にする方が天主の聖旨にも適い、功徳にもなると思います」と言い張って遂に母を納得させ、嫁入り仕度の財産をことごとく貧しい人々に分け与えたのであった。
 ルチアを貰うつもりであったかの貴族は、この事を聞いて大いに怒り、彼女がカトリック信者であることをパスカシオという知事に密告したから、彼はすぐさまルチアを裁判所に拘引させ、その信仰を棄てるように命令したが、もちろんそれに屈服するような彼女ではない、正々堂々と道理を説き断固としてこれを拒絶したから、知事は「こざかしいことを申す女だ。よし、それでは責め道具を用いてやろう。そうすれば如何なその方も恐れ入るであろう」と威嚇した。そしてルチアがそれに対し、主は私共が裁判所に引かれたような場合、どう答え、何を言ったらよいかと心配してはいけない、言うべき事はその時になって心に住み給う聖霊が必ず教えてくださるから、と仰せになりました。それですから私は返答に困ることは決してありません」と言うや、知事は嘲弄の語気で尋ねるよう「ではお前の心にも、その聖霊とやらが住んでいるというのか?」「はい、聖い信仰を持っている純潔な人は誰でも聖霊の聖殿です」「それならその方の貞操を奪い、その聖殿を打ち壊してやろう」
 かくてパスカシオは意地になって、ルチアを屈服せしむべく、配下に命じて之を魔窟に連れ行かせようとした。所が彼女が天を仰いで主の御加護を求めると、その身体は急に盤石の如く重くなり、屈強の者共が五、六人がかりで押しても引いてもびくともせぬばかりか、遂には牛に引かせてさえその場を一寸も動かすことが出来なかった。で、パスカシオは業を煮やし、今度は周囲に薪を積み、之を火炙りにしようとしたが、不思議や火にも焼けない。ほとほと困り果てた揚げ句斬罪に行わしめたが、ルチアは剣で首を刺されてもなお数時間活き存え、その間に御聖体を拝領し、聖主を胸に抱きしめ、聖なる一致の法悦の中に幸福な死を遂げたのであった。


教訓
 聖女ルチアの母が奇跡的に病癒えた感謝に娘の終生童貞を守る決心を許したのは、彼女も報恩の念篤い婦人であったからである。我等も日頃天主から数々御恵みを蒙っているが、果たして之を心底から有難いと思い、及ばずながらそれに報いようという志を有しているであろうか。省みてルチア母子に倣う所がなければならぬ。

カトリック教会の外には絶対に救いがありません

The Miraculous Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Taken from: mostholyfamilymonastery.com

Many are familiar with the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  This miraculous image appeared on the tilma of Juan Diego shortly after he saw Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico in 1531.  When the image of Our Lady was miraculously imprinted on the cloth it became a large reason for the conversion of more than 5 million to the Catholic Faith.  When the people heard about and saw the image, “the whole city was shaken by the event and so the Lord Bishop transferred the beloved Image of the Girl from heaven to the main church.  She [the image] was taken from his private chapel to where everyone could see and wonder at her beloved figure.  People came to acknowledge the divine [miraculous/supernatural] character of the ayate [the tilma].” (Francis Anson, Guadalupe – What Her Eyes Say, p. 53)
Many are also familiar with the miraculous aspects of the eyes of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe.   A close examination of the eyes of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe has revealed many miraculous features, including a microscopic image of a bearded man that can be seen within the eye of Our Lady.  This is covered on our Creation and Miracles DVD.  But it gets even more incredible.  When a person looks at an image, the way that the eye works is that three different aspects of what one sees are contained in three different parts of the eye.  This law, which was discovered by Purkinje and Samson, is called the Samson-Purkinje law:
“The Polish Purkinje and the Frenchman Samson, independently discovered this law that carries their names.  Three images are formed in the human eye: one upright and brilliant in the anterior part of the cornea; a second one, seen deeper in the anterior part of the crystalline lens, is also upright but less brilliant; and the third one, in the posterior surface of the crystalline lens, is inverted, smaller, and with an immediate depth and brilliancy…” (Francis Anson, Guadalupe – What Her Eyes Say, p. 108)
Well, the microscopic image of the “bearded man” that can be seen within the eye of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe follows this law precisely:
“We are also talking of another impossible phenomenon: the image of the ‘bearded man’ appears three times in the eyes of the ayate [the tilma of Juan Diego], following the laws of Samson-Purkinje with mathematical precision.  One image, four millimeters high and one millimeter wide, upright and brilliant, seems to come out of the cloth; a second one, of the same size, the deepest one and the least brilliant, can be perfectly distinguished at the bottom of the eye; and a third one, hardly a millimeter high, is located halfway between the other two and is inverted and displaced toward the left, as it happens in a living human eye… but this is just a piece of cloth.” (Francis Anson, Guadalupe – What Her Eyes Say, p. 109)
Obviously, the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe is not a painting.  It’s a miraculous image of Our Lady which God and Our Lady miraculously imprinted on Juan Diego’s tilma. 
The significance of the discovery of the bearded man in the eye of the image is that Our Lady was looking at the bearded man, Juan Diego, when the image was imprinted on the cloth.  That’s why his image appears three times in her eye just as it would in a living eye!  Other aspects of the eyes show that they are like living eyes.  It makes sense that heaven would leave the world with one miraculous and true image of Our Lord on a cloth (the Shroud of Turin) and one miraculous and true image of Our Lady on a cloth (the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe).


 I want to talk about the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. On December 12, 1531, the miraculous image of the Virgin of Guadalupe appeared for the first time. According to the story, an Indian named Juan Diego was visited several times by the Virgin Mary. She told him to go to the bishop to build a chapel. However, the bishop did not believe Juan Diego. The bishop asked Juan Diego to tell the Virgin to give him a sign as proof that it was indeed the Mother of God who appeared to him. In response, the Virgin told Juan Diego that he would gather some roses and put them on his tilma to present them to the bishop. As soon as he did, the roses fell to the ground and the image of Guadalupe was miraculously printed on his tilma. It still exists to this day, 481 years later and can be visited in Mexico.

La Imagen Milagrosa de Guadalupe
I want to talk about the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. On December 12, 1531, the miraculous image of the Virgin of Guadalupe appeared for the first time. According to the story, an Indian named Juan Diego was visited several times by the Virgin Mary. She told him to go to the bishop to build a chapel. However, the bishop did not believe Juan Diego. The bishop asked Juan Diego to tell the Virgin to give him a sign as proof that it was indeed the Mother of God who appeared to him. In response, the Virgin told Juan Diego that he would gather some roses and put them on his tilma to present them to the bishop.
El obispo Zumárraga y la Imagen Milagrosa de Guadalupe
As soon as he did, the roses fell to the ground and the image of Guadalupe was miraculously printed on his tilma. It still exists to this day, 481 years later and can be visited in Mexico. The first miraculous aspect of the image that I want to discuss is the fact that there is no sketch or drawing under the image. Infrared photography has shown that there is no sketch of the image of Guadalupe. This is a miracle, because as explained by Dr. Phillip Callahan, a biophysics researcher at the University of Florida, "it is inconceivable that a 16th century artist could have painted a portrait without first making a sketch of it." Sketching before painting a portrait goes back to antiquity. Therefore, the fact that there is such a delicate image with such precise details and characteristics, as well as appearing on a rough cactus fiber, is inexplicable when taken into account that it does not have a sketch.
La Imagen de Guadalupe no tiene un bosquejo
A next miraculous aspect of the image of Guadalupe that I want to discuss is about its resistance. The tilma is made of a rough cactus fiber. This type of fabric normally disintegrates between 15 to 30 years, however the image of Guadalupe is now remaining for 481 years without any crack of fading or even slits in the face or in the main image. This is a miracle. This is even more extraordinary when one considers that the image has been exposed to candle smoke for many years, something that would accelerate the deterioration process. In fact, there have been attempts to imitate the image of Guadalupe, but they have failed.

"A famous example was that of an opponent to the appearance of name José Ignacio Bartolache ... In order to try to discredit the miraculous nature of the image, he made an exact copy in a burlap material and with great announcement they hung it in the chapel built where the Virgin Mary appeared. However, at age 7, the painting became so discolored that it was difficult to see it so that on June 8, 1796, it was silently placed in the sacristy. "

This quote is taken from the book "Mother for a New World: Our Lady of Guadalupe" [Mother for a New World: Our Lady of Guadalupe], by Brother Herbert Leie, page 394. Then, there have been attempts to reproduce imitations of the image but they have failed miserably. With respect to the miraculous resistance of the image, the following quote is relevant. It comes from the aforementioned Dr. Phillip Callahan, he points out that:

"The mantilla is a dark turquoise blue. This presents us with an inexplicable phenomenon because all these pigments are known to be subject to discoloration, especially in temperate climates. The wall paintings of the Mayan Indians are very discolored. The blue cloak of the tilma of Guadalupe, however, is bright enough as if it had been painted a week ago. "

So the colors are miraculously fresh and bright. There is also another incredible fact:

"In 1778, a considerable amount of nitric acid was spilled on the image of Guadalupe. The worker fled in terror thinking he had seriously damaged the most precious treasure of his country, but, to everyone's astonishment, only slight spots appeared that can still be seen in the upper right corner ".


This quote comes from the book "The Tilma and its miraculous image: a handbook on Guadalupe" [TheTilma and Its Miraculous Image: a manual on Guadalupe], by Janet Barber, pages 61 through 62.
La Imagen Milagrosa de Guadalupe

There is also the fact that in 1921 a bomb was hidden among some flowers that were placed on the altar under the image of Guadalupe. The bomb exploded and severely damaged a crucifix, however, the glass that contains the image of Guadalupe miraculously did not suffer any damage.


Una bomba dañó crucifijo pero no la imagen de Guadalupe

Another miraculous aspect of the image is about the stars. Some people have concluded that the stars, as well as the rays of the sun and the moon, were added and that the original image was simpler. Dr. Phillip Callahan is someone who holds this opinion. He still believes that the image is miraculous, but that the original image was simpler. I think he is wrong on this point for two reasons. In the first place, Dr. Juan Homero Hernández and Fr. Mario Rojas Sánchez discovered in 1983 that the stars in the image correspond exactly to the constellations of the winter sky of December 12, 1531.
What is very interesting is that the constellations appear as seen from outside the heavens, in other words, they look the other way. It is as if we had an image of someone looking from outside the universe. It is a picture of heaven and earth, from the moment when Juan Diego saw the Virgin. That becomes even more surprising when one considers that the flowers in Our Lady's tunic correspond to the volcanoes in Mexico. This is discussed in detail on page 77 of the book "Handbook of Guadalupe," published by the Academy of the Immaculate. In other words, the inner part of the miraculous image, which has many facets in its way of instructing and causing admiration, represents the earth, and the turquoise mantle on the outside with the stars of the constellations miraculously represent the sky. It is an image of the encounter between heaven and earth when the Virgin appeared to Juan Diego on December 12, 1531; miraculously captured and still present in a cactus fiber, almost 500 years later.
Las estrellas en la imagen de Guadalupe
But what is even more surprising is that the stars only appear on the mantle of the image and not on the tunic, and as I said, the stars that appear correspond to the constellations in the sky on the day of December 12, 1531. But if people superimposed the image of Our Lady to that day's sky, it would coincide with the stars where they would appear if their tunic had been filled with stars; this makes the miracle even more wonderful. Because the constellation corona-borealis means crown of the north, represents a crown that would appear right on the forehead of Our Lady. That means that Mary has a crown and that she is the queen of heaven. The constellation of Virgo, which means virginal purity, appears over the area of ​​your heart, signifying your immaculate and virginal heart. And the constellation Leo, the lion, appears on his belly. The lion represents Jesus Christ who is the Lion of the tribe of Judah. This means that Christ the King is present in his womb, and there is still more. All this shows us the divine intelligence and certainly infinite that is behind this miraculous production. In addition to all those facts, the second reason why I think Dr. Callahan is wrong to say that the stars were added, is that he says that the stars were added in the seventeenth century. However, we know that this is not true because there is a copy of the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe of 1570 that was used in Lepanto. This image corresponds precisely to the image we now see. This means that if the stars were added, they had to have added them between 1531 to 1570, which is very unlikely. In addition, there is a famous painting of the image of the civil code. This goes back perhaps a few years after the appearance of Our Lady in 1531. And this painting shows the sun's rays and corresponds mostly to the image we have now. All this proves that the stars and the rays of the sun and the moon were part of the original image.
La Imagen Milagrosa de Guadalupe
Some are baffled by the fact that, while the face does not seem to show even a small crack or fading, the rays of the sun, stars and moon show evidence of desquamation. I have an opinion about this and I think that it fits with what we learn in Sacred Scripture regarding the stars and the sun and the moon. We are told in:
Luke 21, 33 "Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away".

Therefore, it makes sense that we see the evidence of the stars, the moon, the rays of the sun in the image vanishing because in reality the heavens will pass, but the Virgin herself and the main image that surrounds her and her face are incorruptible because she will shine forever in paradise. That could be the reason we see evidence of the discoloration of the stars, etc., but not the features or characteristics of the Virgin. The next miraculous aspect that perhaps is the most miraculous feature of all is about the eyes of the image. It is a fact that the image of a man with a beard in the eyes of the Virgin has been discovered. It was first discovered in 1928 and then in 1951, and was subsequently confirmed by modern science and intense research. The image of the man with the beard who has even hair corresponds to the image of Juan Diego, the Indian who originally saw the Virgin. In other words, the image of Juan Diego is captured microscopically in the eyes of the Virgin. Of course, no human painter could even conceive the need to place microscopic images of Juan Diego in the eyes of the Virgin only to be discovered later by the advances of modern science. Furthermore, it is simply impossible for any human painter to do this because the images are clearly too small to be painted. And the presence of these images in the eyes is most wonderful because the images correspond exactly to what happens in the human eye when you are seeing something. Jody Brant Smith, a non-Catholic who studied the image of Guadalupe along with Dr. Callahan, explains:

"Before I could understand the importance of his discovery I needed to know something about the physiology of the human eye. In particular, what is called the Purkinje-sanson principle. In simpler terms, the Purkinje-Sanson law says that when we see something, that something is reflected in each eye. Not only in one place, but in three different places. This triple reflection is caused by the curvature of the cornea of ​​the eye. Two of the reflections are always on the right side and one is always upside down. " This is taken from the book "Not Made by Hands", by Thomas Sennott, page 58.

The reflections of Juan Diego in the eye of the Virgin correspond precisely with the law of Purkinje-Sanson. The multiple reflections are exactly where they would be in a human eye that looks at a person. In fact, the Purkinje-Sanson law shows that, when a human being sees something, due to the different angles of the curvature of the cornea, the different images reflected are apparently distorted to varying degrees and in the images in the eye of the Virgin. of Guadalupe, "there is a perfect placement according to this principle of distortion of the figures, even coinciding with the predicted curvature of the cornea". That is, the images appear exactly where they would appear in a human eye. That means that what we have in the image of Guadalupe that is still fresh today in the coarse cactus fiber is the visual reproduction of that celestial encounter of 1531. And this is true on many levels.
Los ojos milagrosos de la Virgen de Guadalupe
The miraculous image not only captures what Juan Diego saw, she captures the vision of the Virgin and the encounter between heaven and earth with the stars as they appeared in the sky of that day. But also in the microscopic recesses in the eye of the Virgin this incredible image captures exactly what the Virgin saw, in the same way it would be captured in your eye if you saw another person in your room. And there are still more.

"In 1981, Dr. José Tonsmann, a systems engineer, electrified the lovers of María de Guadalupe by announcing that his computerized enlargements of the photos of his eyes had revealed microscopically small figures that he suggests could be Bishop Zumárraga, Juan Diego, the interpreter Juan Gonzales, a black woman, an Indian relative, a small child and a man. "

In other words, this computer engineer, when he revealed the image of the eye, many times discovered the presence of practically a room full of people captured in the eye of the Virgin.

"Dr. Jorge Escalante Padilla, an ophthalmologist surgeon, considers that these reflexes belong to the type that has been described by Sherning on the posterior surface of the cornea and by Vogt and Hess in the center of the lens. Those reflexes are very difficult to detect. Dr. Escalante also reported the discovery of small veins in both eyelids of the image. In the 1970s, a Japanese optician who was examining the eyes fainted. When he recovered he said 'the eyes were alive and they were looking at him' ".


This is quoted in, "the latest scientific findings on the images in the eyes, a manual of Guadalupe" by Janet Barber p. 90 So this Japanese optician fainted because he thought the eyes were human and they were looking at him. We have many people captured microscopically in the recesses of the eye image: this is an undeniable proof that the image is miraculous. Only God can do such a thing.



On the other hand, "ophthalmologists have testified that although the eyes are opaque, both eyes in the image show depth and fill with light when the ophthalmoscope light is pointed inside them. They affirm that it is impossible to paint such reflections in eyes that offer so little space with the Virgin looking down and in a material as coarse as the cloth. " This is from the same source that we just quoted.

The scientific findings about the eyes of the image leave no doubt that the image is of divine origin. And it was created by God to leave to the world an invaluable gift: a photo of that encounter of the Mother of God with Juan Diego.
Dios Padre pintando la imagen de Guadalupe
The next miraculous aspect that I want to discuss refers to the face of the Virgin. It is remarkable that at some distance Our Lady seems to be a Native American, but at another distance she seems to have a lighter skin, and in fact, of European descent. This miraculous characteristic is intended to show the unity of two peoples, who were then gathered together as one in the true faith of Christ, in the new nation that had just got rid of the Aztec diabolic culture. In fact, Dr. Philip Callahan explains that the image manages to produce that effect, of appearing to be of different colors at different distances, only because of a miraculous feature that we see in nature. He says:

"At a distance of 6 or 7 feet, the tone of the skin becomes what might be an 'Indian-olive' tone, a green-gray tone. It seems that in some way the gray and white pastel of the pigment of the face and hands is combined with the surface of the rough cloth. This technique would be an impossible achievement of human hands. However, this often occurs in nature, in the coloring of the feathers of birds, and in the scales of the butterflies and the elytra of the brightly colored beetles. "
 Las escamas de una mariposa monarca
So what he is saying is that this miraculous feature of changing colors at different distances is something we see in the nature of beetles and in the feathers of birds and in the scales of butterflies. And that happens in the tilma and in a miraculous way the pigment combines with the rough surface of the fabric to give it a different effect. However, it remains beautiful and delicate at any distance. This is simply a miracle! And no human artist could have achieved an effect like that. It was created by God, just as he created the scales of butterflies. The next miraculous feature I want to mention concerns temperature. It is remarkable that no matter what the ambient temperature is, the image is maintained at a temperature of 36.5 degrees Celsius or 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit (which is the normal temperature of the human body). This is quoted in Janet Barber, "The Tilma and her Miraculous Image".
La imagen de Guadalupe facilitó la conversión de 9 millones de indios mexicanos
As a result of the miraculous image, 8 to 9 million people were baptized into the Catholic faith in the years following its appearance in 1531. It is also worth mentioning that Martin Luther, who for his rebellion against the Catholic Church and his creation of a new type of false Christianity, gave birth to countless sects that plucked five million people from the Catholic Church, he was born in 1483. Hernán Cortés was born only two years later, in 1485. Hernán Cortés was the man who overthrew the Aztec empire, making possible the miraculous conversion of millions that was facilitated by the image of Guadalupe. The most important event in Luther's life was happening almost exactly at the same time that Hernán Cortés managed to overthrow the Aztec empire. It is as if, at the same moment when millions of people were being torn from the true Church in Europe, God was composing it by introducing twice as many people in the New World. The image of Guadalupe is one of the most prodigious miracles in human history. Maybe God did it in Mexico because the Aztec empire was undoubtedly the most evil culture in human history. He wanted to counteract that level of evil with a greater good. The image testified to the truth of the Catholic faith, because in her message Our Lady addressed the people to the bishop of the Catholic Church of the time and to the traditional Catholic faith: that those who seek the truth and those who love the truth and those who they love Christ, they embrace this message and the only true faith of Jesus Christ, the Catholic faith.
Los mensajes jeroglificos en la imagen de Guadalupe
Another miraculous aspect of the image of Guadalupe refers to the reading of the image:

"The Indians saw something in the image of Our Lady that the Spaniards did not understand. At that time the Indians wrote in hieroglyphics. So for them, the image was a hieroglyphic letter. The fact that the natives read the image is the most important in understanding the purpose of the apparitions of Our Lady. For the Indians the image represented a beautiful lady standing in front of the sun, a sign that to them was greater than Huitzilopochtli, who was associated with the sun and whom they worshiped. The half-moon or moon under her feet showed that her moon god, Tezcatlipoca, was less than nothing, since She was standing on it. The stars they so admired were only a part or a portion of their mantle. In her throat was a brooch with a small black cross in the center, reminding them that this was the emblem of the Spanish friars and that there was one greater than Her. " This comes from Father Herald Rahm, "Am I Not Here", p. 56

As we can see, the intelligence - which built the miraculous image of Guadalupe, which conveyed exactly the message that the Indians needed to hear and see to bury their false notions about God and their idolatrous practices - was infinite and beyond any human can imagine . The reading of the image caused many Indians to abandon their idols and convert to the Catholic faith.

Lea este mismo artículo en Español aquí: La Imágen Milagrosa de La Virgen de Guadalupe


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