‘Mary’ Category Archives


SON OF GOD MOVIE: inspiring masterpiece or potboiler?

by Arnold Jago in Entertainment, Faith, History, Jesus, Mary, Women

A movie coming to our local cinema in early June is “Son of God” — based on the life of Jesus Christ.

It’s co-produced by Roma Downey, who also acts the part of his mother Mary.

Many viewers may find that it portrays Jesus as a bit too handsome, too “nice”, too inclined to talk in platitudes . . . .

Later in the film, at the Last Supper, the Trial, the Crucifixion, things become more realistic.

Interesting how, when Judas Iscariot, leaving the supper to go and betray his Lord, having just received the consecrated Bread from Christ’s hand, turns suddenly and vomits it out. Something to think about!

One blooper is a female “disciple” seen at the Garden of Gethsemane, the Last Supper –anywhere the apostles go — there she is. Pleasing to feminists perhaps? This movie certainly isn’t committed to presenting the story as per the Bible.

Some people might benefit from seeing this show. But please read the Book as well. You can read St Mark’s gospel right through in under one hour.

If you miss “Son of God” at the cinema, it’s online at www.putlocker.bz/watch-son-of-god-online-free-putlocker.html


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SYRIA: getting it wrong

by Arnold Jago in Faith, History, Justice, Mary, Persecution

Perhaps the western nations are supporting the wrong side in the Syrian war?
Bishop Antoine Audo, bishop of Alep, spoke to the news agency Fides on April 10, of the precarious situation of the inhabitants of Alep, who can be seen in the streets with plastic bags, searching everywhere for a bit of food.
Hundreds of Catholic families have had to leave the Cheikh Maksoud quarter after the arrival of the rebel militias in early April.
The fate of two priests, an Armenian Catholic and a Greek Orthodox, kidnapped by armed men two months ago on the road between Alep and Damascus, is still unknown.
Some city-centre streets are already closed. “No one can travel on them anymore because snipers fire on any moving thing.”
In Cheikh Maksoud, Christians used to make up the majority of the population. In the last few years, the Kurdish population became the majority, but there remained many Christian families, grouped around the Armenian-Catholic and Greek Orthodox churches.
* * *
Archbishop Samir Nassar, Maronite archbishop of Damascus, reported on April 13 the crucifying dilemma of the Syrian Christians, “forced to choose between two bitter chalices: death or exile”, which is “another, [slower] way to die.”
In the city, there are bombings, trapped cars, starvation, and a lack of medication and care. “233 hospitals have been closed and the doctors are fleeing,”
The parishes have “become a wailing wall to which the Christians turn every day to find protection and help in their attempts to obtain a visa to leave.”
“The indifference and silence of the international community before their long, sad Calvary” is oppressing for the Syrian Christians, who, “abandoned,” find themselves “condemned to death and unable to flee,” continued the prelate. “The consulates have been closed for a year and a half.”
The more wealthy have been able to leave, but the poorer Christians do not understand why they must die in a senseless war.
“Today, the Church is the only resource for these shipwrecked souls.
The pastors, too, are confronted with a dilemma: to tell their faithful to stay is to condemn them to death. “But helping them leave means emptying the Biblical Land of its last faithful Christians,” said Archbishop Nassar.
The Syrian Christians celebrate Mass every afternoon with the refugees and those who are able to come and we recite the Holy Rosary for this intention. Everyone sings the litany and the final hymn to the Virgin with great emotion. They ask Mary for the gift of peace, turning to her as the only one who can still help them to keep hope alive in the terrible situation that we are living through.

sources: apic/fides/afp – DICI#275 May 17, 2013
and www.sspx.org/news/syria_long_calvary_of_christians_5-17-2013.htm


RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE: Respect? Possibly. Dialogue? Not really.

by Arnold Jago in Faith, God, Mary, Truth

Pope Francis has made it clear that he hopes for “dialogue” with Islam.
The dictionary definition of dialogue is “discussion directed towards exploration of a subject or resolution of a problem”. (Oxford Concise, tenth edition).
OK insofar as each participant can clarify his/her grasp of what the other stands for – thus avoiding enmity based merely on a caricature of his/her position.
But what if the clearer picture confirms that the gulf is un-bridgeable?
* * *
Professor S. L. Jaki tells of a conversation with a Muslim fellow-plane passenger who boasted of the freedoms enjoyed in Arab countries:
“I asked him what happens to a Muslim, say in Saudi Arabia or Iran, who becomes a Christian.
“My travelling companion tried to change the subject, but I kept insisting for an answer . . . .
“During the rest of our flight we read our respective books . . . .”
* * *
One fundamental belief of Islam is that the Prophet Jesus was never crucified. (Sura 4)
Another is that Christians believe in a divine Trinity, one of the three Persons being Mary the mother of Jesus. (Sura 5)
If the first of these assumptions is true, then the whole of Christianity evaporates.
The second assumption is simply an untruth
There can be no dialogue at any depth while such basics remain unchanged.
And they will remain unchanged because those statements are in the Koran.


SHARING THE SUFFERINGS OF CHRIST: humility and reverence.

by Arnold Jago in Contemplation, Jesus, Mary, Prayer

Do you make the devotion of the Stations of the Cross on a Friday night?
To do so has been the custom in Catholic churches since the Middle Ages.
* * *
The Fourth Station is the pause to remember how Jesus met his Mother on his journey towards the place of crucifixion.
A traditional prayer to be said while contemplating their meeting goes as follows:
“O Jesus, O Mary, I am the cause of the great and manifold pains which pierce your loving hearts!
“O, that also my heart would feel and experience at least some of your sufferings!
“O Mother of Sorrows, let me participate in the sufferings which thou and thy Son endured for me, and let me experience thy sorrow . . . .
“So that, afflicted with thee, I may enjoy thy assistance in the hour of my death.”
* * *
A great prayer to help cultivate a humble, reverent spirit as we pay our respects to our Lord in his death and Passion.


CHRISTIANITY: its uniqueness. how it started.

by Arnold Jago in Faith, History, Jesus, Mary

The Christian era of history started at the moment of the conception of Jesus Christ (celebrated usually on March 25 the “Feast of the Annunciation”).

The Bible describes the angel visiting the Blessed Virgin, announcing to her what was happening:

“In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God into a city of Galilee, called Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man named Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary.

“The angel being come in, said unto her: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.

“She was troubled, thinking within herself what manner of salutation this should be.

“And the angel said to her: Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found grace with God.”

(St Luke’s Gospel, chapter 1)

* * *

That greeting of the angel has been used ever since by Christians as a prayer, usually worded as follows:

“Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of our death. Amen”

* * *

Mother of God?

A belief not compatible with any other belief system.

Not negotiable for Catholics.

“Dialogue” with other faiths is not really a possibility.

Christianity is a religion to which the purpose of converting others is central.



by Arnold Jago in Faith, God, Mary, Modern Church, Prayer

Tomorrow is the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

After the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus, his mother lived with the Apostle John for about another 12 years.

On the third day after her death, when the apostles gathered at her tomb, they found it empty.

They understood that Mary’s body had been taken up (assumed) into heaven. That is what “the Assumption” means.

Why didn’t her body just reabsorb into the earth like everybody else?

The grave had no power over this woman. She was immaculate and sinless from the time of her conception.

As she had shared with Jesus in his sorrows and agony, so she now came to share in his victory over death.

God had given her great privileges, and she had been faithful to the graces received.

* * *

Many who profess to be Christians have trouble with the Church’s teaching about Mary, the Mother of God.

They shouldn’t. To a thinking Christian, there is no alternative.

Followers of Jesus believe they he was both true man and true God.

Because he was true man, Mary is rightly called a mother.

Because he is truly God, she is called the Mother of God.

* * *

It is fitting that we should consecrate our lives to this Mother, and pray to her in words such as these:

O Mary, conceived without sin, I wish to place myself under your special protection.

I choose you for my patroness, my mistress and my mother . . . .

I desire to make a solemn profession of belonging unreservedly to you, imitating your virtues: particularly your angelic purity, your profound humility, your blind obedience and your incomparable charity . . . .

Obtain for me, dear Mother, the grace of being faithful to this profession all my life, so that I may merit the favour of being your child during all eternity.


Holy Mary, Mother of God.