Mystical Rosary with Mystical Mass Prayer, by a truly anointed priest, Fr. Luke Zimmer, who penned this little pamphlet of prayer under what he felt was Divine guidance -- and what those who use it also feel is an unusual gift when prayed with the heart! In a unique guide, Fr. Zimmer takes a portion of the Mystical Mass Prayer and uses it as a meditation before each decade -- in what is a greatly enhanced, potent Rosary! CLICK HERE
ASCENT OF PALIN SCORES URGENT NEED FOR CHURCH TO HALT PENTECOSTAL DEFECTIONS
The comet-like arrival of Governor Sarah Palin on the political stage and the news that she was born and baptized Catholic but left the Church for a Pentecostal-style place of worship (as a teen, with her parents), underscores the crucial problem of many leaving the Mother Church for more "lively," "non-denominational" churches that are charismatic, Pentecostal, or "evangelical."
Indeed, at many non-denominational churches, on any given Sunday, the majority of worshippers are disaffected Catholics.
This is a crisis. Take just one set of figures: Thirty years ago, about 90 percent of Latinos in the United States were Catholic. Today that number is about seventy percent (and remains steady only because of high birth rates and new immigrants filling the pews). And these are figures from two years ago.
Most other Latino Americans -- 9.5 million of them -- are Protestant: usually Pentecostal, like Governor Palin, or an evangelical denomination.
Why do so many leave?
Many claim they didn't feel the Church related to them personally, and wanted to feel a more dynamic spirituality (such as healing, deliverance, and other "gifts" of the Spirit).
In South America, millions are likewise changing denominations, often because they say they don't feel the Holy Spirit.
Indeed, in the news this week is a YouTube snippet of Palin being prayed over by an "exorcist" visiting her Alaskan church from Africa (and breaking any curses that might come over her, while invoking the Holy Spirit for her rise in the realm of politics).
Pentecostalism has between 250 million and 500 million adherents, most of them in developing nations such as Brazil, China, the Philippines and Nigeria. It is the fastest-growing Christian movement in the world. Thirty years ago, Pentecostals or similar charismatic groups represented six percent of all Christians; today that figure is 25 percent -- according to the World Christian Encyclopedia.
Long academic homilies and a lack of healing, deliverance, and miracle-preaching have shoved many to churches where the Spirit is invoked in a more "charismatic" fashion.
Of course, many of those who say they don't feel the Holy Spirit in Catholicism can be blamed for not doing their own part. The Church presents powerful, incomparable tools in the way of the sacraments (especially Adoration). That can invoke the Holy Spirit like nothing else. It is the True presence.
But it still behooves the Church to use that sacrament for actual healing, to enhance reverence (the lack of mystery has greatly hurt), and to bring in more direct charisms -- replacing theological homilies with ones that relate to the personal lives of those in the pews (or perhaps altogether abbreviating homilies).
Let's note that in Singapore, the local "mega-church" (surprise) is not evangelical (as in the States) but a Catholic one -- the Church of St. Alphonsus, which draws 25,000 to its ten half-hour novena services on Saturdays. (There is a devotion centered on the Blessed Mother -- who, when she has appeared at apparition sites, has at times held her hands upwards). Why do so many go there -- half non-Catholic?
The church provides those in need "a sense of hope and assurance in day-to-day human struggle," a priest there Father Jacob Ong told the newspaper. "You can see by the number of petitions both private and public, that Our Lady helps and strengthens people throughout the journey of life."
The church receives between 700 to 800 letters of petition and thanksgiving every week. The pews are filled because the charisms are flowing. Miraculous cures abound. Paralysis. Cancer.
Remember how Christ ministered?
There is also the issue of antagonism. A little poison goes a long way. Governor Palin's church is the Wasilla Assembly of God. "Assemblies of God" have long been known as particularly critical of Catholicism. In fact, an all-too-common trait of non-denominational churches is to cast doubts on the Blessed Mother, the Real Presence, the papacy, saints, and other characteristics to keep its "converts" from returning to Catholicism. We assume Governor Palin is more open. This is certainly not to disparage her. We love that she is an active Christian.
Yet here is a monumental task -- perhaps more important even than the clergy-abuse crisis:
Defending the Mother Church against the unfair accusations of Pentecostals, making it more dynamic (as Christ was dynamic), and yet keeping it true to its lineage as the Church that was founded -- literally -- on the rock of Peter -- whose ossified, stone-like bones (true to Scripture: Matthew 16:18), are beneath St. Peter's Basilica, which should be of interest to those (like the Pentecostals) who interpret the Bible literally.
[resources: Rekindling Eucharistic Amazement]
[see also: Pastor prayed for protection of Palin from witchcraft and Does Palin think Putin is 'beast'?]
"I am a convert who came into the faith in 1966 as a 16-year-old. I came alone away from my family because of God's grace. My entire family ended up converting a year later.
The Church I entered reverenced the Eucharist by first requiring us to kneel before entering our pew as we entered the Sanctuary....by serving Our Lord to us on our knees at an Altar Rail...by not allowing talking in the main Sanctuary allowing reverence for those praying...by allowing quiet reverence after Communion to thank Jesus for this great Banquet of the Lamb, without having to launch into hymnals and song, giving no time for thanksgiving....by addressing a proper dress code to present ourselves before Jesus allowing reverence in the eye of every beholder....by enforcing (Confession at the time) Reconciliation each week if need be, prior to Mass (and the lines were long) and quiet reverence abounded....by allowing the priest to Celebrate the Mass without interference from a choir or music ministry with new sounds and Protestant songs, instead opting for reverence in holy Gregorian Chants and Catholic standards...
The Catholic EXPERIENCE was truly one of mysticism and reverence that a soul thirsts for in seeking union with its Creator, God and Savior.
Get us back to that...and I think our beloved Pope Benedict XVI is addressing some of this, and you will see the "young" once again flock to our Church.....like I did...because deep spirituality is the most UNDER-RATED necessity in the lives of young people and you might be surprised how Vocations will once again pick up. Instead of the young launching into the fleeting magic of New Age and Occult centered religions, the Holy Spirit will be harvesting them for God's true Church!!!!
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