Issue 023: New Year's Resolutions, the Feast of the Holy Family, and Remembering Pope Benedict XVI
January is the month of the Holy Name of Jesus. The Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus was especially promoted by St. Bernardine of Siena and St. John Capistrano. According to the New Advent Encyclopedia,
“We give honour to the Name of Jesus, not because we believe that there is any intrinsic power hidden in the letters composing it, but because the Name of Jesus reminds us of all the blessings we receive through our Holy Redeemer.”
Likewise, St. Paul wrote: "That in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those that are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth" (Philippians 2:10). Hence at the name of Jesus, we ought to bow our heads with special reverence.
In the world of Catholic news, Pope Benedict XVI, one of the great theologians of the 20th century and first Popes in 700 years to retire, passed away. Two of our our articles this week recall him and his contributions to the Church. Despised by many enemies of the faith, Pope Benedict was a clear minded theologian who loved and sought to defend the faith. He is noteworthy for such things as:
His defense of faith and reason, the synthesis of the two, and the need for both in approaching God.
His promotion of the traditional forms of worship and defense of sacred tradition in the Church.
His great moto proprio, Summorum Pontificum, by which he sought to permit and encourage greater access to the traditional Latin Mass.
Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord.
— The Editors
Pope Benedict on the Link between Political Freedom, Religious Freedom, and Right Worship
On Mt. Sinai, Israel is given details of how it is to worship. There, as Benedict writes, worship itself is bound up with both law and ethics. And when Israel falls away from the true worship of God, its freedom collapses (SL 19-20). Freedom, we cannot help but see again, is bound up with right worship. Freedom exists so that we may do what we are meant to do: and our primary duty is worship. Read more on the link between political freedom, religious freedom, and right worship here.
The Most Important Resolution
Many of us are familiar with the ages-old "tradition" of making, and almost inevitably breaking, New Year's Resolutions. Yet, first and foremost, if we wish to avoid failure in such resolutions, we ought to reflect, first, on what a resolution is. A resolution isn't a wishlist item. A resolution is a firm decision to do something. And this firmness is particularly required of us as Catholic Christians. Read more on the important of genuine resolution here.
For Pope Benedict, in Appreciation
If our world seems to have too often lived without hope, it is only because it has forgotten God–or rather, because it has deliberately tried to cut God out of human thought and life. Again, Benedict XVI wanted to remind modern man that the attempt to live without reference to God, could bring only cruelty, contradiction, and heartache. So for his life, work, and service, above all his service to the Truth, we should all be grateful. Read more here.
On the Feast of the Holy Family, Remember Why The Family Matters
Unjust governments have so often hated the family and sought to control and even attack it. The family stands as the bulwark against an unjust state and society. Most note-worthily, Karl Marx attacked the family as a corrupt bourgeois institution, and the decadent progressive modern West largely follows the Marxist position. Modern progressives opposed to the nuclear family attack it as an oppressive form of “privilege” that they openly seek to dismantle. Read more on the family here.
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