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“The Lowdown on Dating as a Catholic in a Modern World”

“‘Purity?’ they ask. And they smile. They are the ones who go on to marriage with worn-out bodies and disillusioned souls.” – St. Josemaría Escrivá

“[God] has assigned as a duty to every man the dignity of every woman.” – Pope John Paul II 

First off, what is the: Purpose of Dating?

I. Mult. Choice exam:

a. Fun

b. Self-esteem booster

c. S-E-X

d. Everyone else is doing it

e. To see if marriage is right for the two of you/discern marriage

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“Speak of the Devil: Knowing Your Enemy”

–       Just about every religion believes in spiritual intermediaries between God & man—consider the order of nature and the varying degrees of intelligence from a single-cell organism to man—it seems strange that man would be the last link between man and God

–       We profess belief in pure spirits every Sunday in the Creed (seen/unseen versus visible/invisible)

–       In the NT, words Satan and devil appear 67 times

–       Pope Paul VI in 1972: “What are the greatest needs of the Church today?  Do not let our answer surprise you as being over simple or even superstitious or unreal: one of the greatest needs is defense from that evil which is called the Devil…”

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“In the Eye of the Beholder? What is Beauty and Why Should We Care?”

Definition:

Beauty is, “that which being seen pleases” –St. Thomas Aquinas

-“everything possesses beauty”

– “beauty is something that is detected at a first glance. Something that the soul, remembering, names. Recognizes.”

-“our soul gives welcome to it and in a way fuses to it. When the soul sees something beautiful, it becomes more beautiful”

-Beauty shows us who we are, where we come from, and what we are destined for

* a joyful pain

Truth, goodness, and beauty- our minds want truth, our wills want goodness, our feelings want beauty

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“Livin’ on a Prayer: Why Pray and How to?”

Culture of Speed and Noise:

  • Internet (and TV/Radio/Media) makes practically an infinite amount of content available all at once.

  • This instant ability to change what I’m viewing, etc. can make contemplation and quiet reflection difficult.

  • No one really “meditates” on a website, TV show, radio station, etc.

  • The ability to quiet oneself, reflect, and begin to contemplate things beyond our immediate senses is very helpful for prayer

What is Prayer?

  • Everyone has heard of prayer and has at least a vague idea of what it is

  • Some see it as bargaining with God or a “Higher Power.”

  • Simply put, prayer is “conversation with God”

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“There’s a Sacrament for That! Invisible Grace Made Visible in the Seven Sacraments”

THE PASCHAL MYSTERY IN THE SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH

224. What are the sacraments and which are they?

The sacraments, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church, are efficacious signs of grace perceptible to the senses. Through them divine life is bestowed upon us. There are seven sacraments: Baptism, Confirmation, Holy Eucharist, Penance, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders, and Matrimony.

  • The whole liturgical life of the Church revolves around the sacraments, particularly the Eucharist

  • The sacraments give us power to truly live.  They are actions of Christ on our souls.  They are channels or streams of grace flowing from the open side of Christ through Our Lady’s hands to us. (Our Lady=Mediatrix of Grace)

  • Let’s look at the definition of a sacrament: an outward sign instituted by Christ to give grace.

  • What is a sign?  A sign is something that represents something other than itself (ex: dark clouds are a sign of rain; smoke is a sign of fire).  A sign always signifies something and points to something real beyond itself.  So a sacrament is a sign of Christ.  It indicates that Christ is in action, working in our souls to produce grace.  Kreeft mentions that sacraments teach us by “sign language.”

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Gospel Commentary (Mk 1:14-20)

Our Lord spoke 2,000 years ago that “the kingdom of God is at hand.”  This is the invitation, but what is the proper response?

  • So, it would seem that the kingdom was near BACK THEN (since He was there among the people), but NOT near at hand NOW, since we are so separated from that time and place.

  • Don’t we feel closer to the time of WWII than we do the time of the Ancient Roman conquests?

  • However, the amazing and wonderful truth is that the kingdom of God is at hand NOW just as much as it was then.

  • The kingdom of God is immanent TODAY, NOW for every human heart…for all of our hearts tonight.

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