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Copyright © 2017, B.F.S. All rights reserved. Newsletter - June, 2017 [Plain text version]

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* Greetings

* MCS News & Notes

* The Month of June: Dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

* Resources for Pentecost, Trinity Sunday & Corpus Christi

* Prayer & Hymn to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

* Liturgical Feasts in June

* 'Catholic Trivia'

* Defending the Faith: "Apologetics Brief" - Do You Reject the Catholic Church's Teaching That Priests Have the Power to Forgive Sin?

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Dear Friend,

"We are keeping the feast of Pentecost and of the Coming of the Spirit, and the appointed time of the Promise, and the fulfillment of our hope. And how great, how august, is the Mystery." (St. Gregory Nazianzen, Doctor of the Church)

Greetings to you during this busy month of June. Included on the Catholic calendar this month are the following...

Pentecost Sunday - 6/4/17

Ember Days (T) - 6/7, 6/9, 6/10

Trinity Sunday - 6/11/17

Corpus Christi - 6/15/17

Also, note that some special plenary indulgences may be available in June. For more information, please visit Also, please see links below for resources for selected June feasts.

On our end, we are happy to report that the signup sheet for our Ninth Annual Rosary Week (to be held from 10/23-10/29/17) is now ready. Please sign up today for this 'spiritually rewarding' event at . As always, participation in Rosary Week is easy, free, and takes only a little time. You can sign up for one day, a few days, or for the entire week. You can participate at any time of day or night. And, you can join us from the comfort of your own home. You can even sign up anonymously if you like. We hope you will join us & other Catholics throughout the world in praying the Holy Rosary for some worthy intentions, especially during this 100th year anniversary of the Marian apparitions at Fatima. Please also invite your family & friends!

Lastly, with the approach of summer, we send our best wishes for comfortable weather and a blessed, safe & enjoyable vacation to all those who will be traveling. Also, if you'd like some good Catholic activities to complement your summer plans, please visit our previously expanded Catholic Fun & Activities section at . Here you can find crossword puzzles, word searches, coloring activities, mazes, travel activities, and more... We hope you will enjoy it.

Best wishes to you for God's blessings,

Your Friends at

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"Heart of Jesus, rich unto all who call upon Thee, Have mercy on us. Heart of Jesus, Fountain of life and holiness, Have mercy on us. Heart of Jesus, Propitiation for our sins, Have mercy on us." (From the Litany of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus)

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MCS News & Notes

* Rosary Week: The signup sheet for our Ninth Annual Rosary Week is ready and waiting for you! To sign up today, please visit . We hope you will consider joining us in this prayerful endeavor that others have called "very special", "a wonderful idea", "a worthy spiritual exercise", "uplifting", a "wonderful event", "a fantastic idea", "very spiritually rewarding", "much needed", and "a great way for Catholics to bring themselves to [pray] the rosary". We have tried hard to make participation easy and remove any objections that people may have (e.g. you can sign up anonymously, no e-mail address is required to sign up, the event is totally free, you can participate for just one day, you can pray at any time and from any appropriate location...). We really hope you will join us! If you'd like more information on Rosary Week, please visit . Thank you for your participation!

* Can you please help us spread the word about Rosary Week? It would be especially helpful for us this year if subscribers could contact others about Rosary Week as we are still experiencing some email delivery issues due to the recent server transition (and therefore are unable to reach certain parties...please see apology below). Please contact your family, friends, loved ones, fellow parishioners, etc. via phone, email or on your site, blog, etc. Or please consider fliers which can be distributed or posted - for fliers, please visit and click on the 'Fliers' link. Please note that convenient 'toner-saving' Rosary Week fliers are available that contain a white background and print in black & white. Or, if you like, you can choose the more colorful versions. All fliers are in .pdf format. [Note: For best results, please fit fliers to page before printing.]

* New Shortcuts: Inspired by visitors, we have added 4 new shortcuts. They are:,,, (capitals should NOT matter). These shortcuts can be used instead of long URLs. For more information on shortcuts and how they work, please visit . Please note that these particular shortcuts are NOT presently listed on the shortcuts page (however, one of them is noted at the top right of the Topic Page at )

* Great News: We have commissioned five more exclusive articles from the same experienced Catholic journalist that wrote for us earlier this year. We have received the articles and hope to get them on the site before too long. We will plan to include further information in a newsletter after the articles are live.

* Our Apologies: We send our apologies to all affected parties for email delivery issues that have occurred as a result of our recent server switch. Unfortunately, close to half of the 5/17 newsletters were not delivered to subscribers. Mail delivery issues have also affected email messages sent to notify last years' Rosary Week participants that the signup sheet for this year is ready. Also, at least one message to an author of a user-submitted article was bounced back to us. Unfortunately the new IP number that we were assigned by our host was initially blocked by various email providers. Another major email provider blocked us due to unusual email activity on the IP (which OF COURSE would happen because it was a new IP for us, one that we had never used before). At this time, we believe our host has gotten our IP off some block lists, but we are still aware of at least one list that we are not yet able to get off of and our host has declined further assistance with the matter (the email provider has been more 'secretive' than others regarding how to get unblocked...with no clear way to contact them to resolve the situation). Therefore we are NOT presently able to successfully get our email (including newsletters, responses to visitors' queries/correspondence/posts, Rosary Week notices, etc.) delivered to those whose email address ends with certain domains. This mostly affects emails we send (not receive). We hope this will be resolved in time, but we do not yet have a path for resolution (nor can we guarantee a successful resolution). We send our apologies to all affected persons - we are sorry if we couldn't (or still can't) reach you. For those subscribers who may still be interested in viewing the 5/17 newsletter, a plaintext version of it may be found at . Since some subscribers have told us they save our newsletters and they may want a full set, we can try re-send the 5/17 newsletter to those subscribers who request it, if it's not too many and if we are able to get email through (just reply to this email BEFORE 6/10/17 and put '5/17' in the subject line).

* More Apologies: While checking the mailing list subscribe/unsubscribe feature on the new server, we noticed that some of the messages needed improvement. We have since made some changes. We apologize if any of the older messages seemed abrupt or confusing. Please note that we do not have full control over the third party subscribe/unsubscribe service and we are only allowed a limited amount of customization of some (not all) messages. Also, please note that the third party can (and has) made changes to messaging without notifying us of the changes. We regret any undesirable changes that may have been made. We especially apologize to newer subscribers for some of the potentially abrupt or confusing messages related to their mailing list subscription.

* For fasting / abstinence information for Ember Days & the Vigil of Pentecost, please visit

* With June may come weddings & (unfortunately) also a general increase in immodest dress. For wedding information, please try the Catholic Wedding Topic Page at . If you would like more information on the sacrament of holy matrimony, please visit . For information on modest / immodest dress, please visit . Note that this page includes a link to a free flier that can be printed.

* Reminder: Don't forget your priest this Father's Day (6/18 in the U.S.). [Note: For priest-themed quotes such as: "Our parents begot us by blood and the will of the flesh, but priests make us children of God; blessed regeneration, true freedom, and adoption according to grace." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church), see the Reflections links appearing on the Priest Topic Page at ]

* Will you or a loved one be traveling this year? Did you know there are a number of patron saints for travelers? For a listing of patron saints for travelers, visit (tip: search by category 'Hobbies & Travel', or search for patronage 'travel', 'journey', etc.). Also, for prayers for travelers & motorists, visit

* For information on indulgences that may be available in June, please visit

* Vatican gift items (e.g. flags, key chains, decals, pins) are still available in our fundraiser and are a great way to show that you're Catholic. They are reasonably priced, starting under $5.00 (including shipping). Tax, if applicable, may be added. While supplies last. To get yours, please go to

* Service Delays: Due to medical reasons, please continue to expect some sporadic delays in all correspondence & services (including processing of posts) for the foreseeable future. We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for any prayers.

* Help keep us online! Donate any amount (from $1+) at [note that we do NOT sell donor information to third parties and we do NOT contact you about your donation unless it is necessary (e.g. processing problems)]. Thank you for your much needed support!

* Please invite your friends to visit For our "easy to use" invite-a-friend page, please visit . Please invite some friends today! Your support helps keep us going!

* We love to hear from you! Please submit comments at

* Have friends or family that might benefit from our newsletter? Please invite them to subscribe at . Thank you!

- - - - - App News...

* App Development Update: Now that most of the new server work is (hopefully) behind us, we are anxious to get back to app development as soon as possible. We first have a lot of catching up to do (which we'll probably never finish in our lifetimes!...but hopefully we can at least make some progress over time), then we have another project that (if all goes well) may proceed app development. We can't release the details on that project yet, but we are hopeful it may help us to be able to remain online. Afterwards, we will hopefully get back to app development, including (hopefully) completing an update to the iOS version of 'Speedy Dial!' and introducing some great new Catholic apps that we have in the works. We look forward to making progress and appreciate your support & prayers!

* If you don't yet own our Catholic Bible References app, why not get it today? This app is a great memory aid for truths of the Catholic faith that conveniently puts important scripture passages at your fingertips. It is a handy apologetics tool that can be used to help Catholics discuss & defend the faith. It features hundreds of key bible references conveniently arranged by topic, 100+ tips for locating related passages (including those related to defending the Catholic faith among 'Jehovah's Witnesses' & Mormons), modern / traditional scripture translations, a convenient index, an easy / quick / comprehensive search, selectable text, Old Testament / New Testament indicator, a quick, easy-to-use interface, and more...

Download your copy of this 'must-have' app today at or [an iOS version is presently available at ].

* Reminder Re: Updated Pricing: We expect sale prices on our iOS apps to end soon. Please consider making your app purchases before the prices go up. (Note: See for download links)

* Reviews: If you've purchased any of our apps, we encourage you to please leave a review at your place of purchase. Favorable reviews really help us out! To view selected reviews, please visit

* We send our thanks to all who have purchased & rated our apps. Please know that we depend on app sales to remain online.

* If you have any thoughts to share regarding our apps, please contact us using the e-mail address provided in the app or online at

* For more information concerning currently available apps, please visit (shortcut: ), or visit the applicable app store.

Note: Any prices included herein are in U.S. dollars, excluding any applicable tax.

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* Please see our Notices page at for dates of anticipated service delays through August 2017.

* To shop at in support of, please use this link: (shortcut ). You can shop here for books, household & office products, Catholic items, electronics, and much more. Already shop at It doesn't cost any extra to shop at Amazon using this link, yet we can benefit from your purchases. Thank you for your support!

* Reminder: To help ensure delivery of your newsletter, please put our e-mail address in your 'trusted senders' list - or use other applicable options your e-mail provider may offer to let them know that our e-mail is wanted. Thank you.

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

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The Month of June: Dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

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"It is altogether impossible to enumerate the heavenly gifts which devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus has poured out on the souls of the faithful, purifying them, offering them heavenly strength, rousing them to the attainment of all virtues." (Pope Pius XII)

"We do not hesitate to declare that devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus is the most effective school of the love of God; the love of God, We say, which must be the foundation on which to build up the kingdom of God in the hearts of individuals, families, and nations" (Pope Pius XII)

"This devotion [to the Sacred Heart of Jesus], which We recommend to all, will be profitable to all." (Pope Leo XIII)

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Related Resources...

* Sacred Heart of Jesus (Topic Page) -

* Sacred Heart of Jesus (Reflections) -

* Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus (Incl. 'Sacred Heart Promises') -

* Sacred Heart of Jesus / Prayers (Incl. consecration prayers) -

* Litany of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus -

* Annum Sacrum: On Consecration To The Sacred Heart, Pope Leo XIII -

* Caritate Christi Compulsi: On Reparation To The Sacred Heart, Pope Pius XI -

* Haurietis Aquas: On Devotion To The Sacred Heart, Pope Pius XII -

* Miserentissimus Redemptor: On Reparation To The Sacred Heart, Pope Pius XI -

* Sacred Heart of Jesus (Coloring Page) [shaded] -

* Sacred Heart of Jesus (Crossword Puzzle) -

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

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"In truth if the arguments brought forward which form the foundation for the devotion to the pierced Heart of Jesus are duly pondered, it is surely clear that there is no question here of some ordinary form of piety which anyone at his own whim may treat as of little consequence or set aside as inferior to others, but of a religious practice which helps very much towards the attaining of Christian perfection." (Pope Pius XII)

"He showed His Heart to us bearing about it the symbols of the passion and displaying the flames of love, that from the one we might know the infinite malice of sin, and in the other we might admire the infinite charity of Our Redeemer, and so might have a more vehement hatred of sin, and make a more ardent return of love for His love." (Pope Pius XI, "Miserentissimus Redemptor", 1928 A.D.)

"Is not a summary of all our religion and moreover, a guide to a more perfect life contained in this one devotion [to the Sacred Heart of Jesus]? Indeed, it more easily leads our minds to know Christ the Lord intimately and more effectively turns our heads to love Him more ardently and to imitate Him more perfectly." (Pope Pius XI)

"Tell everybody that God gives graces through the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Tell them to ask graces from her, and that the Heart of Jesus wishes to be venerated together with the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Ask them to plead for peace from the Immaculate Heart of Mary, for the Lord has confided the peace of the world to her." (St. Jacinta of Fatima)

"When so many evils meet Our gaze - such as cause sharp conflict among individuals, families, nations and the whole world, particularly today more than at any other time - where are We to seek a remedy, venerable brethren? Can a form of devotion surpassing that to the most Sacred Heart of Jesus be found, which corresponds better to the essential character of the Catholic faith, which is more capable of assisting the present-day needs of the Church and the human race? What religious practice is more excellent, more attractive, more salutary than this, since the devotion in question is entirely directed towards the love of God itself?" (Pope Pius XII, "Haurietis Aquas", 1956 A.D.)

"[T]here is no doubt that Christians in paying homage to the Sacred Heart of the Redeemer are fulfilling a serious part of their obligations in their service of God and, at the same time, they are surrendering themselves to their Creator and Redeemer with regard to both the affections of the heart and the external activities of their life; in this way, they are obeying that divine commandment: 'Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with thy whole mind, and with thy whole strength.' Besides, they have the firm conviction that they are moved to honor God not primarily for their own advantage in what concerns soul and body in this life and in the next, but for the sake of God's goodness they strive to render Him their homage, to give Him back love for love, to adore Him and offer Him due thanks." (Pope Pius XII)

"In order that favors in greater abundance may flow on all Christians, nay, on the whole human race, from the devotion to the most Sacred Heart of Jesus, let the faithful see to it that to this devotion the Immaculate Heart of the Mother of God is closely joined. For, by God's Will, in carrying out the work of human Redemption the Blessed Virgin Mary was inseparably linked with Christ in such a manner that our salvation sprang from the love and the sufferings of Jesus Christ to which the love and sorrows of His Mother were intimately united. It is, then, entirely fitting that the Christian people - who received the divine life from Christ through Mary - after they have paid their debt of honor to the Sacred Heart of Jesus should also offer to the most loving Heart of their heavenly Mother the corresponding acts of piety, affection, gratitude and expiation. Entirely in keeping with this most sweet and wise disposition of divine Providence is the memorable act of consecration by which We Ourselves solemnly dedicated Holy Church and the whole world to the spotless Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary." (Pope Pius XII, "Haurietis Aquas", 1956 A.D.)

Daily Prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus: "Sacred Heart of Jesus, today I wish to live in You, in Your grace, in which I desire at all costs to persevere. Keep me from sin and strengthen my will by helping me to keep watch over my senses, my imagination, and my heart. Help me to correct my faults which are the source of sin. I beg you to do this, O Jesus, through Mary, Your Immaculate Mother."

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Resources for Pentecost, Trinity Sunday & Corpus Christi

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"And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them." (Acts 2:2-3)

Prayer for Pentecost: "Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that the power of the Holy Ghost may abide in us; may it mercifully cleanse our hearts, and defend us from all danger. Through our the unity of the same." (Collect)

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Related Resources...

* Pentecost (Definition) - 

* Pentecost (Prophecies) -

* On the Holy Ghost and His Descent Upon the Apostles (Selections From the Baltimore Catechism, Lesson: 09) -

* Prayers for Pentecost (Incl. Links for Veni Creator Spiritus & Veni Sancte Spiritus) -

* Novena to the Holy Spirit (Friday After Ascension to Vigil of Pentecost) -

* Fasting / Vigil of Pentecost -

* Gifts & Fruits of the Holy Spirit -

* Divinum Illud Munus: On The Holy Spirit, Pope Leo XIII -

* Holy Spirit (Topic Page) -

* Gifts & Fruits of the Holy Spirit (Crossword Puzzle) -

* Holy Spirit (Word Searches) -

* Pentecost (Coloring Pages) -

Reminder: For plenary indulgence info. for the Solemnity of Pentecost, visit

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

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"Thus there are the Father and Son and Holy Spirit, and each of these individually is God, and at the same time all are one God; and each of these individually is the full substance of God, and at the same time all are one substance." (St Augustine, Doctor of the Church, c. 4th century A.D.)

Prayer to the Holy Trinity: "To Thee be praise, to Thee be glory, to Thee be thanksgiving through endless ages, O Blessed Trinity."

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Related Resources...

* The Holy Trinity (Topic Page) -

* The Holy Trinity (Reflections) -

* On the Unity and Trinity of God (Selections From the Baltimore Catechism, Lesson: 03) -

* The Holy Trinity (Apologetics) -

* The Holy Trinity (Topical Scripture) -

Note: For prayers to the Holy Trinity, try the prayers g-h index (scroll to "Holy Trinity") -

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

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"[The Eucharist is] a medicine of immortality, an antidote to death" (St. Ignatius of Antioch, c. 110 A.D.)

"There is nothing more to be added when we have said 'The Eucharist', since It is Jesus Christ." (St. Peter Julian Eymard)

Prayer of Praise & Thanksgiving to the Blessed Sacrament: "O Sacrament most holy, O Sacrament divine! All praise and all thanksgiving be every moment Thine!"

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Related Resources...

* Holy Eucharist / Holy Communion (Topic Page) -

* The Holy Eucharist / Mass - 

* Holy Eucharist / Mass (Reflections) -

* The Catechism of the Council of Trent on the Holy Eucharist -

* Mass / Holy Eucharist (Prayers) -

* Holy Eucharist / Mass (Apologetics) -

* Mirae Caritatis: On The Holy Eucharist, Pope Leo XIII -

* Holy Eucharist (Word Search) -

* Holy Eucharist (Crossword Puzzle) - 

* Communion in the Hand: Why Not? -

* Communion Under Both Species: Is it Required? -

* Lay 'Eucharistic Ministers': Why Not? -

* Sacraments (Topic Page) -

* Kneeling / Genuflecting (Topic Page) -

* Denial of Holy Communion to Public Sinners Under Canon 915 -

Reminder: For plenary indulgence info. for the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, visit

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

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Prayer & Hymn to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

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The following is from a 19th century publication entitled "Little Manual of the Sacred Heart". The original work contains an imprimatur. [Note: Some changes have been made to the text below (e.g. spelling & capitalization changes)]

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Most holy Heart of Jesus, hear me!

Let the fire of Thy Heart animate me!

Let the thorny crown of Thy Heart render me patient!

Let the wounds of Thy Heart pierce me!

Let the blood of Thy Heart make atonement for me!

Let the light of Thy Heart enlighten me!

Let the homage of Thy Heart sanctify me!

Let the mercy of Thy Heart encircle me!

Let the love of Thy Heart bless me!

My heart I unite to Thine in love!

O Heart of Jesus! invite me to Thee, that with all the angels and saints,

I may praise Thee, here for a time, but there for eternity.

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To you who live in grief and pain,

Oppressed by guilt's dismay,

May heavenly peace return again.

To chase your griefs away.


Jesus on high, to sinners kind,

A Victim doth appear;

O hasten His fond Heart to find,

And rest securely there.


Yes, 'tis His voice that sounds so sweet;

Why, sinners, fly from Me?

Come, seek forgiveness at My feet,

Your sins shall pardon'd be.*


What heart did ever friendship prove

Like His, so good and great?

Behold how His expiring love

His Father doth entreat.


For you and me, nay, even for those

Who bid His veins to bleed:

"Father, forgive my cruel foes."

O, this was love indeed.


Jesus, that Heart, which with delight

Fills the angelic train,

Doth sweetly thus our souls invite

Thy mercy to obtain.


O, dry our tears, our bruises heal.

To us Thy blood apply:

A new-formed heart in us reveal,

Who for Thy bounty cry.


* Particularly through the means that Christ established for the forgiveness of sin, the Sacrament of Confession (see )

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Liturgical Feasts in June

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

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

Reminder: Feasts may be superseded / transferred / etc.

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June 1 - St. Justin Martyr (N)

June 2 - St. Erasmus (T)

June 2 - Sts. Marcellinus & Peter (T)

June 2 - Sts. Marcellinus & Peter (N)

June 3 - St. Charles Lwanga & companions (N)

June 4 - St. Francis Caracciolo (T)

June 5 - St. Boniface (T)

June 5 - St. Boniface (N)

June 6 - St. Norbert (T)

June 6 - St. Norbert (N)

June 9 - St. Columba (T)

June 9 - Sts. Primus & Felician (T)

June 9 - St. Ephrem of Syria (N)

June 10 - St. Margaret of Scotland (T)

June 11 - St. Barnabas, apostle (T)

June 11 - St. Barnabas, apostle (N)

June 12 - St. John of San Facondo (T)

June 12 - Sts. Basilides, Cyrinus, Nabor & Nazarius (T)

June 13 - St. Anthony of Padua (T)

June 13 - St. Anthony of Padua (N)

June 14 - St. Basil the Great (T)

June 15 - St. Vitus, Modestus & Crescentia (T)

June 16 - St. John Francis Regis (T)

June 18 - St. Ephrem the Syrian (T)

June 18 - Sts. Mark & Marcellianus (T)

June 19 - St. Juliana Falconieri (T)

June 19 - Sts. Gervase & Protase (T)

June 19 - St. Romuald (N)

June 20 - St. Silverius, pope (T)

June 21 - St. Aloysius Gonzaga (T)

June 21 - St. Aloysius Gonzaga (N)

June 22 - St. Paulinus of Nola (T)

June 22 - St. John Fisher (N)

June 22 - St. Paulinus of Nola (N)

June 22 - St. Thomas More (N)

June 23 - Vigil of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist (T)

June 24 - Nativity of St. John the Baptist (T)

June 24 - Nativity of St. John the Baptist (N)

June 25 - St. William (T)

June 26 - Sts. John & Paul (T)

June 27 - Our Lady of Perpetual Succor (Perpetual Help) (T)

June 27 - St. Cyril of Alexandria (N)

June 28 - St. Irenaeus of Lyons (T)

June 28 - St. Irenaeus of Lyons (N)

June 29 - Sts. Peter & Paul, apostles (T)

June 29 - Sts. Peter & Paul, apostles (N)

June 30 - St. Paul, apostle (T)

June 30 - St. Peter (T)

June 30 - First Martyrs of the Church of Rome (N)

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


6/3/17 - Vigil of Pentecost

6/4/17 - Pentecost Sunday

6/7/17 - Ember Wednesday after Pentecost (T)

6/9/17 - Ember Friday after Pentecost (T)

6/10/17 - Ember Saturday after Pentecost (T)

6/11/17 - Trinity Sunday

6/15/17 - Corpus Christi [Note: In the Novus Ordo calendar this feast may be transferred to Sunday in the U.S. For information for your area, contact your parish or diocese.]

6/23/17 - Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

6/24/17 - Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (N) [Note: Feast may be omitted this year. For information for your area, contact your parish or diocese.]

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'Catholic Trivia'

1. How are the three Persons of the Holy Trinity distinct?

2. Pope Pius XI says in Ad Catholici Sacerdotii that nothing is more acceptable to God than what?

3. Which pope is credited with instituting the feast of the Holy Trinity on the Sunday after Pentecost?

4. What are five vigils that traditionally required fasting?

5. Does St. Ambrose recommend priests use jokes to "lighten up" their sermons? Does St. Francis of Assisi recommend religious provoke people to laughter?

6. What does the term 'Altissimus' mean?

7. Who said...? "When we receive Holy Communion, we receive our joy and our happiness."

8. When does the Catechism of the Council of Trent say that Confirmation should be principally administered?

9. Which oath contains these words? "Finally, I declare that I am completely opposed to the error of the modernists who hold that there is nothing divine in sacred tradition; or what is far worse, say that there is, but in a pantheistic sense, with the result that there would remain nothing but this plain simple fact - one to be put on a par with the ordinary facts of history - the fact, namely, that a group of men by their own labor, skill, and talent have continued through subsequent ages a school begun by Christ and his apostles. I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way."

10. Who said...? "Let them, however, have it always present to their minds that the priest even in the midst of his people must preserve intact his august character as a minister of God, being as he is placed at the head of his brethren. Any manner whatever, in which he employs himself among the people, to the loss of the sacerdotal dignity, or with danger to the ecclesiastical duties and discipline, can only be warmly reproved."



1. According to the Catechism of the Council of Trent, "These Three Persons, since it would be impiety to assert that they are unlike or unequal in any thing, are understood to be distinct only in their respective properties. For the Father is unbegotten, the Son begotten of the Father, and the Holy Ghost proceeds from both. Thus we acknowledge the Essence and the Substance of the Three Persons to be the same in such wise that we believe that in confessing the true and eternal God we are piously and religiously to adore distinction in the Persons, unity in the Essence, and equality in the Trinity."

2. According to Pope Pius XI, "In truth nothing is more acceptable to God, of more honor to the church, and more profitable to souls than the precious gift of a holy priest. If he who offers even a cup of water to one of the least of the disciples of Christ 'shall not lose his reward,' what reward will he receive who places, so to speak, into the pure hands of a young priest the sacred chalice, in which is contained the Blood of Redemption; who helps him to lift it up to heaven, a pledge of peace and of blessing for mankind?" (Pope Pius XI, "Ad Catholici Sacerdotii", 1935 A.D.)

3. Pope Alexander II [d. 1073] is credited with instituting the feast of the Holy Trinity on the Sunday after Pentecost.

4. The following vigils traditionally required fasting: Vigil of Christmas, Vigil of the Immaculate Conception, Vigil of All Saints Day, Vigil of the Assumption, and Vigil of Pentecost.

5. No to both. St. Ambrose, Doctor of the Church, states: "Although jokes are at times fitting and pleasant, nevertheless they are incompatible with the ecclesiastical rule" and St Francis of Assisi states: "Blessed is that religious who takes no pleasure and joy except in the most holy words and deeds of the Lord and with these leads people to the love of God in joy and gladness. Woe to that religious who delights in idle and frivolous words and with these provokes people to laughter."

6. The term 'Altissimus' is Latin for "the Most High" (referring to God)

7. St. John Vianney

8. According to the Catechism of the Council of Trent, "It has also been a matter of solemn religious observance in the Church of God that this Sacrament should be administered principally at Pentecost, because on that day especially were the Apostles strengthened and confirmed by the power of the Holy Ghost. By the recollection of this supernatural event the faithful should be admonished of the nature and magnitude of the mysteries contained in the sacred unction."

9. Oath Against Modernism, Pope St. Pius X, 1910 A.D.

10. Pope Leo XIII, "Fin Dal Principio", 1902 A.D.


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Defending the Faith: "Apologetics Brief" - Do You Reject the Catholic Church's Teaching That Priests Have the Power to Forgive Sin?

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 Reject the Catholic Church's Teaching That Priests Have the Power to Forgive Sin? [Note: Topic is directed at Protestants]


* How can you reject the Catholic Church's teaching that priests have the power to forgive sin in light of Scripture's clear testimony:

"And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. WHOSE SINS YOU FORGIVE ARE FORGIVEN THEM, AND WHOSE SINS YOU RETAIN ARE RETAINED." (Jn. 20:22-23, emphasis added)

"I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. WHATEVER YOU BIND ON EARTH SHALL BE BOUND IN HEAVEN; AND WHATEVER YOU LOOSE ON EARTH SHALL BE LOOSED IN HEAVEN." (Mt. 16:19, emphasis added)


"Is anyone among you sick? He should summon the presbyters [that is, priests] of the church, and they should pray over him and anoint (him) with oil in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will raise him up. IF HE HAS COMMITTED ANY SINS, HE WILL BE FORGIVEN." (Jms. 5:14-15, emphasis added)

Do you call Christ (and St. James) a liar? Why do you refuse to believe what Scripture says?

* How can you deny that the priest is God's appointed representative in light of the above? If priests couldn't forgive sin, why did Christ breathe on them and say "Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained" (Jn. 20:23) if He didn't really mean it?

* What was the point of giving the power to bind and loose (see Mt. 18:18) if it wasn't to be used?

* Do you imagine that Christ - being God and knowing all - would not know that persons would sin after Baptism? Do you image that our Savior would not leave a certain means for sinners to obtain forgiveness? Do you imagine that the merciful Lord would not leave us help in our struggle?

* If you believe that Baptism given by the hands of men gains the remission of sin (see Acts 2:38), why do you reject the concept that men also have been given the power to remit sins after baptism?

"Why do you baptize, if it is not allowed that sins be forgiven through men? In baptism too there is forgiveness of all sins; what is the difference whether priests claim this power is given them to be exercised in Penance or at the font? The mystery is the same in both." (St. Ambrose of Milan, Doctor of the Church, c. 387 A.D.)

* Since Scripture says that we should *not* pray when we see our brother committing deadly sin (see 1 Jn. 5:16), what recourse do you suppose that person who committed a deadly sin has? Do you suppose Christ left him no certain means of forgiveness?

* Do you believe the power to forgive sins ended with the Apostles? Why would such power only be given for a certain amount of time? Why do you suppose that Jesus would only provide for the forgiveness of sins for the lifetime of certain men? How can you think that Christ would fail to make provisions for all those who follow Him? 

* Considering that Scripture says: 

Heb. 10:26-31: 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 is 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. it not clear that Christ's followers who commit sin are in dire need of forgiveness? In light of the above, how could one have peace of mind after committing sin if not for the words of absolution from Christ's authorized ministers?

* Do you think that the Catholic Church teaches that a mere man has the inherent power to forgive sin? Do you not realize that the Catholic Church teaches that it is Christ alone who forgives sin - He merely does this through the instrumentality of authorized men (that is, Catholic priests).

"Damasus did not cleanse, Peter did not cleanse, Ambrose did not cleanse, Gregory did not cleanse; for the ministries are ours but the Sacraments are Yours." (St. Ambrose of Milan, Doctor of the Church, 381 A.D.)

Note: If you believe the only 'mortal sin' for believers is unbelief, please visit "Think the Only 'Mortal Sin' for Believers is Unbelief?" at

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"In this same sense He says: 'Whatsoever thou shall bind upon earth it shall be bound also in Heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth it shall be loosed also in Heaven.' This metaphorical expression of binding and loosing indicates the power of making laws, of judging and of punishing; and the power is said to be of such amplitude and force that God will ratify whatever is decreed by it." (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"They who inhabit the earth, they who make their abode among men, are entrusted with the dispensation of the things of heaven! Priests have received a power which God has given neither to the angels nor to archangels. It was said to them: 'Whatsoever you shall bind upon earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever you shall loose, shall be loosed.' Temporal rulers have indeed the power of binding; but they can bind only the body. Priest, however, can bind with a bond which pertains to the soul itself, and transcends the very heavens. Whatever priests do here on earth, God will confirm in heaven, just as the master ratifies the decisions of his servants... I see the Son placing all this power in the hands of men. They are raised to this dignity as if they were already gathered up to heaven, elevated above human nature, and freed of its limitations." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church, c. 387 A.D.)

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In Closing...

"[Jesus] said to him, 'You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment.'" (Mt. 22:37-38)

"Heart of Jesus, full of goodness and love, Have mercy on us. Heart of Jesus, Abyss of all virtues, Have mercy on us. Heart of Jesus, most worthy of all praise, Have mercy on us." (From the Litany of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus)

Prayer for Pentecost: "Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that the power of the Holy Ghost may abide in us; may it mercifully cleanse our hearts, and defend us from all danger. Through our the unity of the same." (Collect)

"We think it opportune to exhort you once again venerable brethren, and through you all those dear children of Ours in Christ, to continue to exercise an ever more vigorous zeal in promoting this most attractive form of piety; for from it in our times also We trust that very many benefits will arise [from devotion to the Sacred Heart]." (Pope Pius XII, "Haurietis Aquas", 1956 A.D.)

"Be thou blessed, O Jesus, for having instituted, in the Holy Eucharist, not only the greatest of the sacraments, but also a Sacrifice which surpasses all others; a Sacrifice whereby we are enabled to offer to the divine Majesty the only homage that is worthy of Him, give Him thanks in keeping with His favors to us, make Him a superabundant atonement for our sins, and finally beg and obtain from Him all the graces of which we stand in need." (Dom Gueranger)

"God has given to priests powers greater than those given to our parents; and the differences between the powers of these two is as great as the difference between the future life and the present. Our parents begot us to temporal existence; priests beget us to the eternal. The former are not able to ward of from their children the sting of death, nor prevent the attack of disease; yet the later often save the sick and perishing soul" (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church, c. 387 A.D.)

"It is in the adorable heart of Jesus that we shall find every help for our necessities, every remedy for the cure of our ills, the most powerful assistance against the assaults of our enemies, the sweetest consolation to soothe our sufferings, the purest delight to fill our souls with joy. Are you in sorrow? Do your enemies persecute you? Does the recollection of your past sins disturb you? Is your heart troubled or full of fear? Throw yourself, so to speak, in the wounds of Jesus Christ, even into His Sacred Heart, it is a sanctuary, it is the retreat for holy souls, and a place of refuge wherein your soul is safe. It is to Him and through Him that we should ask for all we require; it is through Him and in Him that we should offer to the Eternal Father all we do, because this Sacred Heart is the treasury of every supernatural gift, the source of every grace. It is the channel through which we unite ourselves more intimately to God, and through which God communicates Himself more freely. It is, in fine, to this Sacred Heart we should continually strive to unite ours - no longer wishing to have other desires or sentiments than those of Jesus - and then we may be sure that His will and His Sacred Heart may, so to speak, merge into our heart, and that the two will be as one. Draw waters at leisure out of the Savior's fountains: you will never exhaust them." (St. Peter Damien, Doctor of the Church)

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