A dark, bitter, boiling hot, and addictive beverage that bestowed almost super-human energy, sharpened the wits, and had its origins in the land of the infidels was certainly suspicious in 16th century Europe. Yet it was becoming so popular that some began to demand that the pope forbid Christians from consuming the wicked brew.
World & Culture
Even amidst the devastation and tragedy of Hurricane Harvey, there have been many stories filled with hope. This Texas family lost everything, due to a fire that was caused by the hurricane. When the Rojas family returned to see the damage, they found something quite surprising. The one thing that Harvey could not overcome were […]
People from all over the world are flocking to the United States to witness a phenomenal astronomical event. A total solar eclipse will pass across the length of the entire of the United States. It’s being called “The Great American Eclipse.” One astronomer is predicting that this will be the “most photographed, most shared, most tweeted event in human history.”
On May 9, 1985, President Ronald Reagan gave a rousing speech before the Assembly of the Republic of Portugal in Lisbon. In this speech he spoke of the historic greatness of the nation of Portugal. He also mentioned the Holy Father and, indirectly, the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima.
The story of the Good Samaritan is the story of today’s humanity. People’s paths are riddled with suffering, as everything is centered around money, and things, instead of people. And often there is this habit, by people who call themselves “respectable,” of not taking care of the others, thus leaving behind thousands of human beings, or entire populations, on the side of the road. Fortunately, there are also those who are creating a new world by taking care of the other, even out of their own pockets. Mother Teresa actually said: “One cannot love, unless it is at their own expense.”
Since we live in an era when customs and traditions have faded and tend to lose their meaning, it’s good to remind ourselves that, concluding the spiritual preparation of Lent, Holy Week is the annual commemoration of the Passion of Christ. It’s not just another religious tradition. We aren’t celebrating the fact that the Son of God suffered and died, but Catholics are recognizing and honoring His sacrifice, accompanying Him spiritually and physically, as if we had been there with Him, two thousand years ago.
For many centuries, brewers have invoked the names of patron saints to bless and protect their beers. Since the early brewing process was not well understood, often times the batch of beer was not fit for drinking. The poor quality was mystically blamed on evil spirits and specifically on “brew witches” or “beer witches.”
February 14th is the traditional day of celebration for lovers. It’s the proper occasion for writing love letters and sending tokens of love to those who have captured your heart. This custom began in Europe during the High Middle Ages, the pinnacle of the age of courtly love, and is captured in immemorial English literature as the mid-Feburary day when birds (and lovers) first begin to pair.
These stories are a testament to the fact that sacramentals (statues, crucifixes, icons, and other material objects representing our Catholic faith) are truly “sacred signs instituted by the Church to prepare us to receive the fruit of the sacraments and to sanctify different circumstances of our lives” (CCC 1677). They are spiritually powerful, especially when blessed by a Catholic priest.
An archaeological dig in Rome recently uncovered the earliest-known icons of the Apostles Peter, Paul, Andrew, and John. Yes, the early Church venerated the saints! Read the story.