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Copyright © 2018, B.F.S. All rights reserved. Newsletter - February, 2018 [Plain text version]

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* Greetings

* MCS News & Notes

* The Month of February: Dedicated to the Holy Family

* Resources For Lent

* 25 Reflections Concerning Sin

* Liturgical Feasts in February

* 'Catholic Trivia'

* Defending the Faith: "Apologetics Brief" - Do You Believe That No One Should Tell You What to Believe?

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Dear Friend,

"Mercy unto you and peace: and charity be fulfilled." (Jude 1:2)

Greetings in Christ as we approach the penitential season of Lent. This year, Ash Wednesday falls on February 14th so there is still ample time to prepare for a holy Lent. When readying for the upcoming season, it may be useful to keep in mind these words from Holy Scripture where "St. Paul [shows] the necessity of self-denial and mortification, to subdue the flesh, and its inordinate desires" (DR, explanatory text)...

"Know you not that they that run in the race, all run indeed, but one receiveth the prize. So run that you may obtain. And every one that striveth for the mastery refraineth himself from all things. And they indeed that they may receive a corruptible crown: but we an incorruptible one. I therefore so run, not as at an uncertainty: I so fight, not as one beating the air. But I chastise my body and bring it into subjection: lest perhaps, when I have preached to others, I myself should become a castaway." (St. Paul, 1 Cor. 9:24-27)

We wish you a blessed & holy Lent and thank you for your support of our site and newsletter,

Your Friends at

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"The holy season of Lent is fast advancing; the choicest graces are being daily offered us; woe to the man whose mind is distracted by the fashion of this world that passeth away, and takes no thought for eternity and heaven, and, even in this time of grace, is like...a worthless weed of the desert. Oh how numerous is this class! And how terrible is their spiritual indifference! Pray for them, O ye faithful children of the Church, pray for them without ceasing. Offer up your penances and your almsgivings for them. Despair not, and remember that, each year, many straying sheep are brought to the fold by such intercession as this." (Dom Gueranger)

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MCS News & Notes

* Recent Book Update: The Kindle version of our newest publication ("Catholic Annual Prayer Book") received an update since our last newsletter. This update resolved some typos and deleted a duplicate quotation. NO prayers were removed (ALL prayers remain fully intact and they should be in the same order as the original version). If you purchased the Kindle version since the update, you should already have the most current version of the book. If you purchased it before the update and do not have automatic updates turned on, you may want to contact directly and ask that they push the update to your device(s). Note that we suggest keeping a separate offline copy of your notes/highlights/etc. until you are sure that these items transfer over correctly (perhaps on one's desktop computer or on another device). In our case, we were happy to find that all highlights and bookmarks seemed to transfer over perfectly. Although we cannot promise such items will transfer over successfully on any given device, our experience with multiple devices leaves us hopeful. Please note that handles the process after we submit an update and we have no control over it at that point. As we are aware that updates may cause an inconvenience to readers, we have taken the decision to issue an update very seriously (this was, in fact, our first & only Kindle book to be updated). Also, please note that the paperback version of this book did NOT receive an update, and we do NOT presently have any plans to update the paperback version. For known errata in this publication (and others), please see the errata page at . Lastly, if you are uncertain as to whether or not your Kindle version of this title is the most current version, you can verify that it is by the presence of BOTH of these two items: 1-copyright date contains 2018, and 2-pipe character (' | ') appears just before 'All Rights Reserved.' Unless the title page contains BOTH of these two items, an update for the book should be available.

* Indulgences Reminder: For information on plenary indulgences available in Lent, please visit

* Great for Lent! Please consider purchasing some - or all! - of the following items to support our site & newsletter...

iStations (Stations of the Cross) - A handy devotional app for Android (or for the iPad® / iPhone® / iPod touch®) which is perfect for those times when you can't make it to your parish. Download it at or [an iOS version is presently available at ]

My Crucifix For the iPad®, iPhone®, and iPod touch® - A quick & easy (but powerful!) devotion to grow closer to Christ. Download at (iPad® version available at )

Catholic Annual Prayer Book - A great tradition-minded prayer resource containing 365+ daily prayers (Jan.-Dec.), holiday/seasonal prayers, daily prayers (e.g. morning/evening, mealtime, etc.), hundreds of prayers indexed by title, nearly 200 aspirations/short prayers, over 100 Latin prayers & aspirations, 500+ topics for meditation, hundreds of prayer tips & insights, and more... Includes prayers drawn from Holy Scripture, the liturgy, writings of popes & saints, the Raccolta, the Roman Breviary, the Roman Missal, etc. Available in both Kindle and paperback formats. Available here:

Thank you for your support. Your purchase helps us to remain online!

* Coloring Page for 2/14: For a Happy St. Valentine's Day coloring page, please visit . [Note: For more on love / charity, please visit ]

* Schedule Update: We have started the second title in our 'Catholic Devotional Series'. However, due to other commitments and the amount of work involved, we expect it will take us a while to finish. In the meantime (hopefully in February), we hope to get up the two 'exclusive articles' mentioned previously. Please check the 'What's New' page at for details when new items are added to the site.

* Sad News: We have been a victim of a false review on Amazon by someone who apparently disagrees with our book's tradition-minded (and completely faithful to the Church) viewpoint. Although the defamatory/libelous review contains utter lies (items we can prove are lies!) and violates two of Amazon's own guidelines, Amazon has refused to remove the false review even though we have pointed out both of these facts to them on several occasions. Regrettably, from what we have read online, this seems to be rather typical for Amazon. Unfortunately, this essentially leaves us without any effective remedy outside of legal action (an expensive option for which we strongly believe we would prevail, but one that might backfire if it caused Amazon to remove all our materials from their site). Even if we ourselves removed this particular publication from Amazon (a terrible option!), the page which contains the severely damaging lies (including that we are "anti-Catholic") is considered 'permanent' and would remain in place. This means that we essentially have no choice but to allow the defamatory & libelous statements against us to remain, even though we can prove they are false and even though they violate two of Amazon's own guidelines. And sadly, bad reviews have a lot of power in the early stages of a book, especially without multiple counteracting reviews coming to its defense (book sales of this title have already plummeted as unsuspecting customers may believe the lies). At this time, we would like to: 1) remind reviewers about the commandment to not bear false witness, and 2) remind readers to be cautious about believing false statements made in reviews or elsewhere - even statements made by Catholics. We hope in the future people will counteract lies about us with truth. We also (probably futilely) hope that Amazon will take a stand against lies/defamation/libel and provably false statements. Please encourage them to do so. Prayers are also very appreciated. Also, we have added the following 'urgent appeal' to relevant pages of our site...



An expanded version of this article is available on as a paperback and a Kindle e-book. Unfortunately, a 'liberal-minded' reviewer of the book has made false - even libelous! - charges against us (i.e. that we are not Catholic, anti-Catholic, and part of the SSPX). Of course, all these charges are TOTALLY AND UTTERLY FALSE. We are practicing, Mass-attending, cradle Catholics in good standing. The book is in NO WAY anti-Catholic (quite the contrary!). We are NOT part of the SSPX and NEVER have been. We hope the reviewer will be reminded of the Commandment to not bear false witness as their actions may be doing irreparable harm to us and our site.

We implore you to please come to our aid by...

1. Buying the book (available at for just $4.99/Kindle or $12.99/paperback)

2. Leaving a positive review for the book (assuming you like the publication)

3. Rebutting the FALSE accusations made by the 'liberal-minded' reviewer

4. Down-voting the review which contains the FALSE accusations

Please help us rebut the liberal forces trying to silence faithful Catholics who are tradition-minded!


Thanks in advance for any help. If you would like to contact us about this issue, please use this form:

* Did you experience issues with the time indicated on our site in January? After last month's newsletter was sent out, we were notified by our host that they would be "rebooting the dedicated servers in [their] datacenter to protect them against malware/spectre vulnerabilities". After the reboot, the server's date was persistently off for a while until the host could address the issue. The issue appears to be resolved at this time. We apologize for any inconvenience.

* Links Issue in Kindle Books: We have discovered that some mobile Kindle versions may have issues with links that contain bookmarks (e.g. path/filename.htm#bookmark). This issue may affect all books (not just ours). In our testing, we found that the links themselves ARE actually correct, but they may nevertheless be interpreted incorrectly by Kindle (and may return 'Page Not Found' errors even though the page exists & is available and the path provided in the publication is correct). Note that this may occur regardless of the nature of the bookmark (e.g. characters only or characters with spaces), therefore it may not be possible to avoid including potentially problematic links in our publications. And again, the issue seems to be limited to certain mobile versions of Kindle - other versions of Kindle work properly. To address this issue, we have set up a page which provides detail concerning the problem as well as a list of potentially affected links in each of our publications (if any). Links appearing on the page are the same links included within the publication, but the links should function properly outside of the affected Kindle versions (e.g. with a regular browser). The page containing more information and links is available here:

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* Please visit our Notices page for timely news and other important information regarding -

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The Month of February: Dedicated to the Holy Family

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"And Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ." (Mt. 1:16)

"Lord Jesus Christ, who, being made subject to Mary and Joseph, didst consecrate domestic life by Thine ineffable virtues; grant that we, with the assistance of both, may be taught by the example of Thy Holy Family and may attain to its everlasting fellowship. Who livest and reignest, world without end. Amen." (Roman Missal)

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Related Resources...

* Holy Family Topic Page -

* References to the Holy Family in Scripture -

* Family / Families (Reflections) -

* Holy Family Coloring Pages -

* Holy Family (Mazes) -

* Jesus (Topic Page) -

* Blessed Virgin Mary (Topic Page) -

* St. Joseph (Topic Page) -

Looking For Something Else? Try Our Various Indexes For 15,000+ Entries -

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"Jesus, Mary, Joseph!" (Aspiration)

"Our Lord, His Mother, and His foster-father, St. Joseph, together formed one family which should be the model and veneration of all Christian households." (Manual of the Holy Catholic Church, 1906 A.D.)

"We cannot separate Mary and Joseph, were it only for their having such close connection with the mystery of the Incarnation - Mary as being the Mother of the Son of God; and Joseph, as being guardian of the Virgin's spotless honor, and Foster-Father of the divine Babe." (Gueranger)

"Jesus reigns over the family when it, modeled after the holy ideals of the sacrament of matrimony instituted by Christ, maintains unspotted its true character of sanctuary. In such a sanctuary of love, parental authority is fashioned after the authority of God, the Father, from Whom, as a matter of fact, it originates and after which even it is named. (Ephesians iii, 15) The obedience of the children imitates that of the Divine Child of Nazareth, and the whole family life is inspired by the sacred ideals of the Holy Family." (Pope Pius XI, "Ubi Arcano Dei Consilio", 1922 A.D.)

"The home of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph was a very poor but a very peaceful home. And from it we may learn how to regulate our homes, and make them the abodes of virtue and peace." (Missionary Society of St. Paul the Apostle, 1893 A.D.)

St. Joseph, most watchful guardian of the Holy Family, protect us.

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Resources For Lent

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"Grant to us, Lord, we beseech Thee the ready aid of Thy grace; that as we are earnestly occupied, as is meet, with fasting and prayer, we may be set free from all enemies both of body and soul. Through Christ our Lord. Amen." (Collect)

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Related Resources...

* Lent (Topic Page) -

* Ash Wednesday (Topic Page) -

* Fasting (Topic Page) -

* Lenten Prayers (Topic Page) -

* Way of the Cross (Topic Page) -

* Sin (Topic Page) -

* Penance (Topic Page) -

* Spiritual Growth (Topic Page) -

* Good Friday (Topic Page) -

* Make Your Own Lent Calendar -

* Traditional Practices For Lent / Easter (Incl. Fasting / Abstinence / Partial Abstinence) -

* Lent / Easter Activities (See 'Holiday Activities') -

* Lent / Easter Prayers -

* Stations of the Cross -

* Jesus' Last Words From the Cross -

* Trials & Sorrows of Jesus -

* Fulfilled Prophecies in Scripture (Abandonment & Betrayal of Jesus, Jesus' Passion, Death, & Resurrection) -

* The Passion / Cross (Reflections) -

* Rome's Lenten Station Churches -

* Prayers & Devotions -

* Indulgences -

* Works of Mercy -

* Sin & Vice: Q & A -

* Stabat Mater (Sequence) -

* Collages (Incl. Holy Land, Church of the Holy Sepulchre) -

* Coloring Pages (Incl. Last Supper, Jesus Washing Apostle's Feet) -

Note: The MCS Daily Digest at (shortcut: ) is also an excellent resource for Lent. The MCS Daily Digest may contain Catholic calendar information corresponding to the date (including reminders about feast days/holy days, fasting, etc.), various quotations (e.g. from scripture, Jesus, popes & saints), Q & A, 'Today in Catholic History' items, and more... This is a great page to bookmark - and it also makes a great home page. Don't miss a day!

Looking For Something Else? Try Our Various Indexes For 15,000+ Entries -

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"Lent is the forty days before Easter Sunday, during which we do penance, fast and pray to prepare ourselves for the resurrection of Our Lord; and also to remind us of His own fast of forty days before His Passion." (Baltimore Catechism) 

"It is also true that we should practice mortification in many things to make reparation for our sins. There is no doubt that the person who lives without mortifying himself is someone who will never succeed in saving his soul." (St. John Vianney)

"The observance of Lent is the very badge of Christian warfare. By it we prove ourselves not to be enemies of the cross of Christ. By it we avert the scourges of divine justice. By it we gain strength against the princes of darkness, for it shields us with heavenly help. Should mankind grow remiss in their observance of Lent, it would be a detriment to God's glory, a disgrace to the Catholic religion, and a danger to Christian souls. Neither can it be doubted that such negligence would become the source of misery to the world, of public calamity, of private woe." (Pope Benedict XIV, 1741 A.D.)

"The forty days' fast, which we call Lent, is the Church's preparation for Easter, and was instituted at the very commencement of Christianity. Our blessed Lord Himself sanctioned it by fasting forty days and forty nights in the desert; and though He would not impose it on the world by an express commandment... yet He showed plainly enough, by His own example, that fasting, which God has so frequently ordered in the old Law, was to be also practiced by the children of the new... [W]e find it mentioned, in the Acts of the Apostles, the disciples of our Lord, after the foundation of the Church, applied themselves to fasting. In their Epistles, also, they recommended it to the faithful. Nor could it be otherwise. Though the divine mysteries whereby our Savior wrought our redemption have been consummated, yet are we still sinners: and where there is sin, there must be expiation." (Dom Gueranger)

"Now the whole essence of a Christian life is to reject the corruption of the world and to oppose constantly any indulgence in it; this is taught in the words and deeds, the laws and institutions, the life and death of Jesus Christ, 'the author and finisher of faith.' Hence, however strongly We are deterred by the evil disposition of nature and character, it is our duty to run to the 'fight proposed to Us,' fortified and armed with the same desire and the same arms as He who, 'having joy set before him, endured the cross.' Wherefore let men understand this specially, that it is most contrary to Christian duty to follow, in worldly fashion, pleasures of every kind, to be afraid of the hardships attending a virtuous life, and to deny nothing to self that soothes and delights the senses. 'They that are Christ's, have crucified their flesh, with the vices and concupiscences' - so that it follows that they who are not accustomed to suffering, and who hold not ease and pleasure in contempt belong not to Christ." (Pope Leo XIII, "Exeunte Iam Anno", 1888 A.D.)

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Other Useful Lenten Resources...

iStations (Stations of the Cross) - A handy devotional app for Android (or for the iPad® / iPhone® / iPod touch®) which is perfect for those times when you can't make it to your parish. Download it at or [an iOS version is presently available at ]

My Crucifix For the iPad®, iPhone®, and iPod touch® - A quick & easy (but powerful!) devotion to grow closer to Christ. Download at (iPad® version available at )

Catholic Annual Prayer Book - A great tradition-minded prayer resource containing 365+ daily prayers (Jan.-Dec.), holiday/seasonal prayers, daily prayers (e.g. morning/evening, mealtime, etc.), hundreds of prayers indexed by title, nearly 200 aspirations/short prayers, over 100 Latin prayers & aspirations, 500+ topics for meditation, hundreds of prayer tips & insights, and more... Includes prayers drawn from Holy Scripture, the liturgy, writings of popes & saints, the Raccolta, the Roman Breviary, the Roman Missal, etc. Available in both Kindle and paperback formats. Available here:

Your purchase helps keep online - Thank you for your support!

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25 Reflections Concerning Sin

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Note: Items below are not comprehensive and they are in no particular order. [Reminder: Translation / wording / punctuation / referencing / capitalization / spelling / etc. may vary. Interpretation and application of any item should not be contrary to the perennial, official teaching of the Roman Catholic Church. Do not take items out of context. Do not inflict harm on yourself or others, break laws, take unsuitable / incautious or inappropriate / drastic actions, or take figurative items literally.]

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1. "The end of sin is death." (St. Basil the Great, Doctor of the Church)

2. "Run from places of sin as from the plague." (St. John Climacus)

3. "...where there is sin, there must be expiation." (Dom Gueranger)

4. Q: "Which is the greatest evil in the world?" A: "Sin." (Catechism of St. John Neumann)

5. "Charity is lost by each and every mortal sin." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

6. "[T]he sin of the century is the loss of the sense of sin" (Pope Pius XII)

7. "We have only one evil to fear, and that is sin." (St. Alphonsus Liguori, Doctor of the Church)

8. "Do not plot to repeat a sin; not even for one will you go unpunished." (Sirach 7:8)

9. "...sin is madness, for it exposes the soul to fall into infinite misery" (Dom Gueranger)

10. "Flee from sin as from a serpent that will bite you if you go near it; Its teeth are lion's teeth, destroying the souls of men." (Sirach 21:2)

11. "Woe to the world because of things that cause sin! Such things must come, but woe to the one through whom they come!" (Our Lord Jesus Christ, Mt. 18:7)

12. "Moreover, if anyone without repentance dies in mortal sin, without a doubt he is tortured forever by the flames of eternal hell." (Council of Lyons / Pope Innocent IV, 1254 A.D.)

13. "Although the sinner does not believe in Hell, he shall nevertheless go there if he has the misfortune to die in mortal sin - even though he neither believes in Hell or even thinks about it." (St. Anthony Mary Claret)

14. "Amen, amen, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin." (Our Lord Jesus Christ, Jn. 8:34)

15. "Even though I had committed but one little sin, I should have ample reason to repent of it all my life." (St. Francis of Assisi)

16. "The saints understood how great an outrage sin is against God. Some of them passed their lives in weeping for their sins." (Catechism of the Cure of Ars)

17. "He who commits sin does what is not pleasing to God; but he who repents of his sins, does what is most pleasing to Him." (St. Robert Bellarmine, Doctor of the Church)

18. "Every sin is a debt which we contract towards Almighty God, and His justice demands payment down to the very last farthing." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church)

19. "God has promised pardon to the one who repents, but he has not promised repentance to the one who sins." (St. Anselm of Canterbury, Doctor of the Church)

20. "The same reason, then, which prompts us to confess that God is to be loved above all things, obliges us also of necessity to acknowledge that sin is to be hated above all things." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

21. "So long as he is in the flesh, a man is not able to be without sins, at least the lesser ones; but do not make light even of those sins calls lesser. If you make light of them when you weigh them, be terrified when you count them. Many lesser ones make one big one; many drops fill a river; many grains make a lump." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church)

22. "...sin carries in its train two evils, the stain and the punishment. Whenever the stain is effaced, the punishment of eternal death is forgiven with the guilt to which it was due; yet, as the Council of Trent declares, the remains of sin and the temporal punishment are not always remitted. Of this the Scriptures afford many conspicuous examples..." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

23. "Therefore God never spares him that offends, in that he never leaves his sin without taking vengeance on it. For either man himself in doing penance punishes it in himself, or God in dealing with man in vengeance for it, visits it with His rod, and thus there is never any sparing of sin, in that it is never remitted without vengeance." (Pope St. Gregory I the Great, Doctor of the Church, 6th century A.D.)

24. "If we sin deliberately after receiving knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains sacrifice for sins but a fearful prospect of judgment and a flaming fire that is going to consume the adversaries. Anyone who rejects the law of Moses [was] put to death without pity on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Do you not think that a much worse punishment is due the one who has contempt for the Son of God, considers unclean the covenant-blood by which he was consecrated, and insults the spirit of grace? We know the one who said: 'Vengeance is mine; I will repay,' and again: 'The Lord will judge his people.' It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God." (St. Paul, Heb. 10:26-31)

25. "Pardon us, O Lord, pardon us. We beg to shift the blame for our sins, we make excuses. But no one can hide from the light of your truth, which both enlightens those who turn to it and exposes those who turn away. Even our blood and our bones are visible to you, who created us out of dust. How foolish we are to think that we can rule our own lives, satisfying our own desires, without thought of you. How stupid we are to imagine that we can keep our sins hidden. But although we may deceive other people, we cannot deceive you, and since you also see into our hearts, we cannot deceive ourselves, for your light reveals to us our own spiritual corruption. Let us, therefore, fall down before you, weeping with tears of shame. May your judgment give new shape to our souls. May your power mold our hearts to reflect your love. May your grace infuse our minds, so that our thoughts reflect your will." (Abbot William of Saint Thierry)

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"For there is no sin, however great or horrible, which cannot be effaced by the Sacrament of Penance..." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"[T]he Church can forgive all sins, no matter how many or how grave they may be, because Jesus Christ has given her full power to bind and to loose." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"For those who fall into sin after Baptism the Sacrament of Penance is as necessary to salvation as is Baptism for those who have not been already baptized." (Council of Trent)

"Should anyone be conscious of sin, he should immediately accuse himself, humbly solicit pardon from God, and implore time to confess and satisfy for his sins." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

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For More Try...

* Reflections -

* Sin (Topic Page) -

* Sin & Vice (Q & A) -

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Liturgical Feasts in February

The following is a listing of all liturgical feast dates for February as they appear at

Note: (T) = Traditional, (N) = New (Novus Ordo)

Reminder: Feasts may be superseded / transferred / etc.

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February 1 - St. Brigid (T)

February 1 - St. Ignatius of Antioch (T)

February 2 - Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary (T)

February 2 - The Presentation of the Lord (N)

February 3 - St. Blase of Sebaste (T)

February 3 - St. Ansgar (N)

February 3 - St. Blase of Sebaste (N)

February 4 - St. Andrew Corsini (T)

February 5 - St. Agatha of Sicily (T)

February 5 - St. Philip of Jesus (T)

February 5 - St. Agatha of Sicily (N)

February 6 - St. Dorothy (T)

February 6 - St. Titus of Crete (T)

February 6 - St. Paul Miki & companions (N)

February 7 - St. Romuald (T)

February 8 - St. John of Matha (T)

February 8 - St. Jerome Emiliani (N)

February 8 - St. Josephine Bakhita (N)

February 9 - St. Apollonia (T)

February 9 - St. Cyril of Alexandria (T)

February 10 - St. Scholastica (T)

February 10 - St. Scholastica (N)

February 11 - Our Lady of Lourdes (T)

February 11 - Our Lady of Lourdes (N)

February 12 - The Seven Founders of the Servite Order (T)

February 14 - St. Valentine (T)

February 14 - Sts. Cyril & Methodius (N)

February 15 - Sts. Faustinus & Jovita (T)

February 17 - Seven Founders of the Order of Servites (N)

February 18 - St. Mary Bernard (Bernadette) Soubirous (T)

February 18 - St. Simeon (T)

February 21 - St. Peter Damian (N)

February 22 - St. Paul (T)

February 22 - St. Peter's Chair at Antioch (T)

February 22 - Chair of St. Peter, apostle (N)

February 23 - St. Peter Damian (T)

February 23 - St. Polycarp (N)

February 24 - St. Matthias, apostle (T)

February 27 - St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows (T)

Please Note: Above may exclude moveable feasts. For moveable feasts, see below and try here: . For other feasts, try the MCS Daily Digest each day at


2/4/18 - Sxagesima* Sunday (T) [* Note: Term has been abbreviated to avoid mailing issues]

2/11/18 - Quinquagesima Sunday (T)

2/14/18 - Ash Wednesday

2/18/18 - First Sunday of Lent (Quadragesima Sunday)

2/21/18 - Ember Wednesday in Lent (T)

2/23/18 - Ember Friday in Lent (T)

2/24/18 - Ember Saturday in Lent (T)

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'Catholic Trivia'

1. What are some traditional names for the Fourth Sunday of Lent?

2. What is the "Haceldama"?

3. Which pope introduced Midnight Mass at Christmas and made Lenten fasting obligatory?

4. What is a Holy Hour?

5. Who does St. John Vianney say to offer temptations for?

6. Since God loves everyone, how can it be said that He 'hates' sinners?

7. According to Pope St. Gregory I, how many types of fire are in hell?

8. What does Triduum refer to?

9. What is the traditional term for those who "knowingly and willfully help to propagate heresy or who hold comminicatio in sacris ('Catholics actively and publicly joined in divine worship with non-Catholics) with heretics"?

10. What does Pope St. Pius X say are the three obstacles in the way of Modernists?



1. Traditional names for the Fourth Sunday of Lent include: Laetare Sunday, Rose Sunday, and Sunday of the Five Loaves.

2. The Haceldama is the potter's field purchased with the coins of Judas's betrayal. The term is from the Aramaic for "field of blood".

3. Pope St. Telesphorus (d.c. 136) introduced Midnight Mass at Christmas and made Lenten fasting obligatory.

4. A Holy Hour is "A devotion consisting of exposition of the Blessed Sacrament for the space of one hour to enable the faithful to meditate before it, especially upon the Passion. Hymns, litanies and other prayers are sometimes sung, and the exposition is terminated by Benediction." (Catholic Dictionary) This term may also, informally, refer to an individual's hour-long adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

5. "Offer your temptations for the conversion of sinners. When the devil sees you doing this, he is beside himself with rage and makes off, because then the temptation is turned against himself." (St. John Vianney)

6. "Nothing prevents one and the same thing being loved under one aspect, while it is hated under another. God loves sinners in so far as they are existing natures; for they have existence and have it from Him. In so far as they are sinners, they have not existence at all, but fall short of it; and this in them is not from God. Hence under this aspect, they are hated by Him." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

7. According to Pope St. Gregory I, "The fire of hell is one, but it does not torment all sinners in the same way. Everyone there, according to the quantity of his sin, has the measure of his pain."

8. "Three days" - "A time frequently chosen for prayer or for other devout practices, whether by individuals in private, or in public by congregations or special organizations in parishes, in religious communities, seminaries, or schools. The form of prayer or devotion depends upon the occasion or purpose of the triduum. The three days usually proceed some feast, and the feast then determines the choice of the pious exercises." (Catholic Encyclopedia)

9. The traditional term for those who "knowingly and willfully help to propagate heresy or who hold comminicatio in sacris ('Catholics actively and publicly joined in divine worship with non-Catholics) with heretics" is "suspect of heresy".

10. According to Pope St. Pius X in the Encyclical Pascendi Dominici Gregis, "[Modernists] recognize that the three chief difficulties which stand in their way are the scholastic method of philosophy, the authority and Tradition of the Fathers and the Magisterium of the Church, and on these they wage unrelenting war."


For more information concerning the topics above, try our General A-Z Index at

Like trivia? You might enjoy our crossword puzzles located at

You might also be interested in the Q & A and historical information which may be found each day on the MCS Daily Digest at

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Defending the Faith: "Apologetics Brief" - Do You Believe That No One Should Tell You What to Believe?

It is good for Catholics to be able to defend their faith against attacks (or even simple questions) from those outside the Church. We therefore hope you may find the following "apologetics brief" helpful.

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Note: Text below is taken from

The following may be used as discussion points when discoursing with those outside the Church (or even among Catholics).

Topic: Do You Believe That No One Should Tell You What to Believe? (Note: Topic is directed at Protestants)


* Do you believe in private interpretation of the Bible? See here:

* If you shouldn't be told what to believe, why did Christ commission the Apostles and instruct them to teach all persons (see Mt. 28:19-20)? Why were those who didn't accept their teachings condemned (see Mt. 10:14)?

* If you shouldn't be told what to believe, why did Christ establish His Church, which Scripture calls "the pillar and foundation of truth" (1 Tm. 3:15)? 

* If you shouldn't be told what to believe, why does Scripture make it clear that it is necessary to assent to certain truths to be saved?

* If no one should tell you what to believe, how do you know you won't believe in false doctrines that will eventually lead to your eternal damnation?

* Where does Scripture say you may believe as you like?

* Why do you deny the concept of objective truth in matters of religion in favor of your own personal beliefs? Do you also reject teachers in subjects such as math because you "don't want anyone to tell you what to think" or do you realize that they teach truths? Why then do you equate religious truths with mere opinion? 

* By rejecting instruction in matters of religion, you create for yourself a religion of "feeling". But truth is not determined by feelings. If you calculate 2+2=4, you have achieved truth, but it is unlikely to be accompanied by a special feeling. The fact that you don't "feel" the truth of 2+2=4 doesn't make it any less true, just as the fact that someone feels 2+2=5 is true doesn't make it true. Not all that "feels right" is necessarily right and not all that might "feel wrong" is necessarily wrong. In fact, remember that it probably "felt good" for Adam & Eve to take that forbidden fruit - and look where that got us! Also, where in Scripture does it say that an assessment of truth is based on feeling? Since when is true religion not based on objective truths?

* If you believe in "private interpretation", why is it you claim to have a "direct link to God" only in matters of religion? What about other matters of truth?

* A person is bound by God's moral laws - just as one is bound by the laws of nature (e.g. gravity) also authored by God - and this is true whether a person "believes" in them or not. Therefore, if one must be bound by moral laws, one must be told what these laws are!

* If no one is to tell you what you are to believe, in matters of religion you will necessarily believe error and falsehood. How is it that you think God, Truth itself, finds errors and falsehood acceptable? And, don't forget, "error has no right to exist"...

"Nothingness can have no rights since it has no existence. It is impossible for a thing which does not exist to have any rights. Therefore to attribute rights to a non-existent entity is an injustice. But what are you doing if you attribute rights to error except attributing them to a non-existent entity? It is enough to consider what truth and error are in order to understand this. Truth is found in the intellect in the measure in which the intellect is in exact conformity with reality. When the intellect has an idea which is not in conformity with reality, then we have an error. But what is really happening in such a case? I have in my mind the idea of something as if this thing formed part of the order of being. I attribute it rights in my mind, as if it were portion of the divine scheme of things. But it is not so in reality. In point of fact it is a baseless creation of my own mind. How can I take as the foundation of my life and of my actions a 'reality' which is no reality? What can be the outcome of such an aberration? Precisely what happens in the case of any structure raised without foundation. If I take as a basis for my life and action an idea of my own to which nothing real or objective corresponds the whole intellectual and social edifice I raise on that basis is of necessity bound to crumble. There can be no other solid foundation for action and life than an objective reality. This then is why truth alone has the right to exist in the individual and in the social order. From no point of view can error claim this right. When it gets a footing in a mind or among the multitude, it usurps rights not belonging to it, it is unjust. Evil is the privation of the being and goodness due to a thing. Now error is the specific evil of the intelligence, the privation of the grasp of the order of the world which the intelligence is meant to have. It is a malady to be cured, a disease to be healed, a cancer to be eradicated, not a perfection to be extolled and proclaimed worthy of respect... Our Lord came down to restore the Divine Life of Grace to the human race and to each individual in it. For this end He revealed truth to the world. This truth belongs to Him in virtue of His divine right and also in virtue of His work of redemption. If this truth belongs to Him and is given to the world by Him in a well-defined sense and for a very definite purpose, then to ruin or lessen it is to commit an injustice. It is to sacrifice the rights of Jesus Christ... Certainly there is no place for anything but truth." (Fahey) 

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"[I]t is contrary to reason that error and truth should have equal rights." (Pope Leo XIII, "Libertas Praestantissimum", 1888 A.D.)

"What, then, is this foolish cry about the slavery of dogma? How can Truth make men anything except more free? Unless a man is prepared to say that the scientist enslaves his intellect by telling him facts, he dare not say that the Church fetters his intellect by defining dogma." (Benson)

"Now the human intellect, in gaining the knowledge of such truths is hampered both by the activity of the senses and the imagination, and by evil passions arising from original sin. Hence men easily persuade themselves in such matters that what they do not wish to believe is false or at least doubtful. It is for this reason that divine revelation must be considered morally necessary so that those religious and moral truths which are not of their nature beyond the reach of reason in the present condition of the human race, may be known by all men readily with a firm certainty and with freedom from all error." (Pope Pius XII, "Humani Generis", 1950 A.D.)

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For more apologetics resources, please visit

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In Closing...

"O Lord Jesus Christ, who, becoming subject to Mary and Joseph, didst hallow home life by singular virtues; by the help of both, do thou grant that we may be taught by the example of thy Holy Family, and have fellowship with it for evermore: Who livest." (Collect, Feast of the Holy Family)

"[A]ll should be intimately persuaded that the minds of children are most influenced by the training they receive at home. If in their early years they find within the walls of their homes the rule of an upright life and the discipline of Christian virtues, the future welfare of society will in great measure be guaranteed." (Pope Leo XIII, "Sapientiae Christianae", 1890 A.D.)

"[I]t is an excellent thing to go to confession often, because the sacrament of Penance, besides taking away sin, gives the graces necessary to avoid sin in the future." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"Oh, how bitterly shall we regret at the hour of death the time we have given to pleasures, to useless conversations, to repose, instead of having employed it in mortification, in prayer, in good works, in thinking of our poor misery, in weeping over our poor sins; then we shall see that we have done nothing for Heaven. Oh, my children, how sad it is! Three-quarters of those who are Christians labor for nothing but to satisfy this body, which will soon be buried and corrupted, while they do not give a thought to their poor soul, which must be happy or miserable for all eternity. They have neither sense nor reason: it makes one tremble." (Catechism of the Cure of Ars)

"When you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites. They neglect their appearance, so that they may appear to others to be fasting. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you may not appear to be fasting, except to your Father who is hidden. And your Father who sees what is hidden will repay you." (Our Lord Jesus Christ, Mt. 6:16-18)

"Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that the sacrifice of Lenten observance which we offer to Thee may both make our souls more acceptable to Thee and give us the strength to restrain ourselves more readily. Through our Lord." (Secret)

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