Subscribe via email

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Friday, December 30, 2011


The Church Of Nativity

The Star of Bethlehem. Here, the Word became flesh.  The exact place of Jesus’ birth.

"Don’t celebrate Christmas.  It has a pagan background!"  Iglesia Ni Cristo, Dating Daan, Jehova’s Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists are not ready to celebrate Christmas with the whole world as they believe the birthday of Jesus is not written in the Bible and some practices related to this celebration, has its pagan background!  In order to realize the foolishness of their stand we have to analyze some facts (historical and biblical, common sense and reason) related to the celebration of Christmas on 25th December.

As we all know, the birth of Jesus is written in the Bible; not its day and date.  We celebrate Christmas on 25th of December not because that particular ‘date’ is important, but the event that we remember on that date, which divided the history into two, is very essential for our salvation.  The Bible doesn’t say the exact date of Christ’s birth as December 25, and even the calendar that we use today was not in existence at that time!  Just like any other feasts in the Catholic Church, (Good Friday, Easter Sunday, etc…) we commemorate biblical events in different days of the liturgical calendar, not because that ‘dates and days’ have something to do with our salvation, but those events that we commemorate, are essential mysteries for our salvation.

The Biblical Basis Of Christmas Celebrations

At the time of Jesus, birthday celebrations were very common as it was a practice among the Jews.  The birthday of Pharaoh (Gen. 40:20-22),  birthday of Herod (Mk. 6:21-28),  birthday of Job (Job 1:4, 18-19) are narrated in the Bible.   There is no evidence in the Bible that Jesus prohibited birthday celebrations as anti-Catholics insist now!

The birth of Jesus was celebrated by shepherds and angels, in heaven and on earth, the Bible describes.  We have to know from our common sense that, just because  the date is not seen in the Bible, we can’t celebrate the anniversary of Christ’s birth!  Even Protestants, who are addicted to ‘Bible Alone Theory’ of Luther, are also celebrating Christmas!

Jesus celebrated annual holy days and feasts  that are not commended in the Old Testament but observed as a simple custom of that time.  (Passover, Pentecost, etc… were commended.  But the celebrations narrated in Judges 11:39-40, Esther 9:19&22 and the Feast of Dedication that Jesus himself observes in John 10:22-23 are not commended by the Scripture.  (It was instituted by Judas Maccabeus and celebrated by the Jews, only as a custom!)

Christmas And Pagan Traditions

Anti-Catholics make a big issue about some Christmas practices that has similarity with pagan customs (Christmas trees, candles, December 25, exchanging of gifts, etc…)

But all Christian practices that are written in the Bible, also have the same problem!  They already existed in the pagan world, in different forms and styles!  For example, baptism by immersion in water, for the forgiveness of sins, has existed as an old custom of ancient Hindu religion.  They believed, immersion in the river Ganges, purifies them from all sins!  Does that mean, baptism is pagan?

The pagans bowed their knees and prayed to their gods; so the Christian should not bow and pray?  Even the word ‘Bible’ was widely used in the pagan world, as ‘the books’ that are written about Greek gods; then we should not use the word ‘Bible’?  The church construction of Iglesia Ni Cristo is a blind imitation of Catholic cathedrals of Gothic art in Europe; does that mean, INC church is a Catholic Church?  Those elements which have similarities of pagan culture, that crept in to Christmas celebrations, will never make Christmas, a pagan celebration.  (The real word meaning of ‘Christmas’ is Christ and Holy Mass; without that Christmas becomes meaningless.)

The Date ‘December 25’

The early Christians selected December 25th as the proper date of Christmas, maybe because, according to some Bible scholars, there were biblical evidences to conclude, December 25th was the exact date of our Lord’s birth.

St. Luke who wrote the Gospel in ‘orderly sequence’ (Lk. 1:1-4) most probably got the date of the Lord’s birth from Mother Mary.  Scripture says Zechariah received the message from an angel while he was incensing; which shows the Feast of the Dedication of the Temple on September 18-24, according to the Roman calendar.  After six months Mary received annunciation from the angel (Lk. 1:26-38), that is the month of March.  (Traditionally, the Church celebrates it on March 25th).  We have to add just 9 months from this date to know the date of Christ’s birth, which justifies the centuries old custom of Christmas on December 25.

The second reason, why early Christians celebrated Christmas on 25th of December was, to attract pagans to Christianity.  For pagans December 25th was the birthday of sun god.  Christians proudly proclaimed  to them that the real sun, is Jesus, the ‘sun of righteousness’ (Mal.4:2) and slowly replaced the pagan feast into a meaningful celebration, and attracted pagans to the true faith, in obedience to the Bible: “Overcome evil by good” (Rom. 12:21).  Thus Christmas became a celebration of the victory of Jesus over pagan gods! (Ref.: Dictionary of Roman Religion, Oxford University press, New York, 1996)

Now, all over the world, nations and religions, Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, remember the great birth of Jesus in that day.  (Only Iglesia Ni Cristo, Ang Dating Daan and other fake churches, try their best to remind others those ‘forgotten gods of history’; sun god, Mitra and other devils, on this Holy Day for their vested interests, just hoping to get some followers!)


Thursday, December 29, 2011

Purgatory In The Bible

Christians believed in purgatory before they believed in the Bible. As we don’t see the word ‘Bible’ in an authentic Bible translation, we don’t see the word ‘purgatory’ in the Bible. But the Bible supports its existence.

Purgatory is not a place, but a state of being that we started in baptism and perfected after our death. It is our full transformation in Christ (Rom. 13:14) and perfection in our holiness (1 Pet. 1:16).

As we all know, we are not holy enough to be with God. Unholy things will never enter into heaven, as it is a place of Holy of Holies. But God demands this holiness from us to be with him: “Be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy” (Lev. 19:2). But we are not totally sinners to go directly to hell – the eternal punishment. Even so-called sinners may have done many good things in their lives, which are to be rewarded. Jesus said, “If you give a cup of water in my name you will be rewarded.” Our good deeds will not be punished in hell and our evil doings will never enter into heaven. So God’s justice and his mercy demand a state of purification that we become worthy to be with our heavenly father.

Biblical Evidences  Of Purgatory

The Old Testament:   
Isa. 6:5-7 – Then Isaiah said, “ Woe to me, I am doomed! For I am a man of unclean lips, living among a people of unclean lips, yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of Hosts!” Then one of the seraphim flew to me, holding an amber which he had taken with tongs, from the altar. He touched my mouth with it. “See” he said, “Now this has touched your lips, your wickedness is removed, your sin is purged.” This purging process of human soul is called ‘purgatory’.

When the Lord of Hosts appear in the Day of Judgment, the Bible says, he will open a fountain to purify from sin and uncleanness (Zec. 13:1). The nature of that fountain is explained as: In all the land, says the Lord, two third of them shall be cut off and perish, and one third shall be left. I will bring the one third through fire, and I will refine them as silver is refined, and I will test them as gold is tested.  They shall call upon my name and I will hear them” (Zec. 13:8-9).
Purgatory in the New Testament: 
Mat. 5:26 – Jesus  says, “Amen I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.” Here, Jesus himself shows to us, after death there is a releasing as we pay the last penny.

St. Paul makes a clear statement about purgatory when he calls it ‘the test of fire.’ We are saved ‘as if through fire’ 1 Cor. 3:11-15. “For no one can lay foundation other than the one that is there namely Jesus Christ. If any one builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, or straw, the work of each will come to light, for the Day of the Lord will disclose it. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each one’s work. If the work stands that someone built upon the foundation, that person will receive the wage. But if someone’s work is burned up, that one will suffer the loss; but he will be saved, but only as through fire.”

Jesus taught that our sins could be forgiven in the next world: (Mt. 12:32) “And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven;  but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.” Council of Trent (1545-1563) explained this as “from this sentence we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come.”

All ancient writers who have seen and heard what the apostles preached believed in Purgatory. From their writings we have the clear evidence of this early Christian faith. Those who defended this doctrine were Tertullian (160 AD), Origen (185 AD), Cyprian (200 AD), Ambrose (340 AD), and many others.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Protestants Repent!

Cover page of Time Magazine Proclaims: “Hail Mary.” Catholics have long revered her, but now Protestants are finding their own excuses to celebrate the ‘Mother of Jesus.’ The writer, David Van Biema, in his long article says, “she was there at the cross. Let Protestants seldom talk about Jesus’ mother… but they are starting to know.” 500 years, ‘Bible alone’ Christians attacked Mother Mary! Catholics were accused of “Too much love for Mary.” She was considered an obstacle to pray directly to God. But now, with evidence, Van Biema exposes a huge number of protestant pastors, Presbyterians, evangelical and liberal Protestants, who keep deep personal devotion to Mary. Now, icons of Mary are placed on the walls of Protestant divinity schools!

Virgin Mary statue crying blood of tears in Sacramento, California is getting worldwide attention.

March 20, 2003, Reuters reported this news. This statue of the Virgin Mary weeping tears of blood as a peaceful message against a looming U.S. led war with Iraq, in Caracas, Venezuela.

Garabandal is a small place in Northwest Spain. On June 18, 1961, Mother Mary appeared to four girls, Mari Loli Mazon (12), Jacinta Gonzalez (12), Mari Cruz Gonzalez (11), and Conchita Gonzalez (12). Conchita asked Mother Mary to show a sign to make others believe in the apparition and the message. As thousands of pilgrims were witnessing, a Sacred Host descend from heaven on the tongue of Conchita, on July 18, 1962. A photographed miracle!

Mother Mary appeared to Bernadette in a grotto of Lourdes in 1956 and revealed to her she is “Immaculate Conception.” Now, this place is one of the most famous pilgrim centers in the world. This rare photo is taken at the time of apparition of Holy Mary, Mother of God.

 Weeping Medjugorje Statue In Italy Is Deemed 'Inexplicable' By Church Experts
Report: Document concludes there's no human explanation for Italy's weeping Madonna. ROME (AP) - A review of the probe into a statue of the Madonna said to have shed tears of blood a decade ago concluded that the phenomenon has no human explanation, a newspaper reported Sunday. The Civitavecchia diocese ordered theologians, historians and doctors to review the case and compile their conclusions in a document, according to Corriere della Sera, which published what it said was a summary of the findings.

Corriere, Italy's leading newspaper, said the document presented a critical analysis of all the testimonies given at the time, as well as all possible explanations for the phenomenon. "Everything -- they (the experts) say unanimously -- indicates that in that corner of the Earth, at the gates of Rome, an event took place that has no human explanation and points at the mystery of the supernatural," Corriere wrote. Vittorio Messori, a leading Catholic author who helped Pope John Paul II write the 1994 best-selling book "Crossing the Threshold of Hope," wrote the Corriere article.

 On Thursday, November 11, 1999 in Via delle Benedettine a new great Eucharistic miracle happened. A host, that had been previously put by Our Lady on the chalice of the white statue of the Mother of the Eucharist, bled; it was the 9th time that the Eucharist bled in the thaumaturgical place.

 Real photo of the apparition of Mother Mary on April 2, 1968. The Blessed Virgin appeared in different forms over the domes of the Coptic Orthodox Church named after her in Zeitoun, Cairo, Egypt.

Monday, December 5, 2011

“Behold Your Mother” (Jn. 19:27)

Catholics worship Mary” is a lie always used by anti-Catholics against the Church. This false accusation was propagated for centuries to deny the role of Mary in the history of salvation. “Mary is human! Why do you pray to her when we can pray directly to God?”, that is what they ask.

This image of Mary, the Mother of Jesus Christ, was painted by St. Luke. It was carried by St. Thomas the apostle to India about one thousand, nine hundred and fifty years ago. Today, Mary continues to be venerated through this painting. It is kept at the main altar in the Church of Mount St. Thomas in Madras, India, the place where St. Thomas was martyred for the Catholic Faith. We see that devotion to Mary goes back to the time of the apostles, who were personally devoted to the Mother of God. The apostles, wherever they went, encouraged all the disciples to honor Mary as their Mother because Jesus gave Her to be the Mother of us all.

International pilgrim Virgin Statue of Mother Mary of Fatima wept in 1946 in the Cova on a pilgrimage to Lisbon.

This miracle happened in Naju, Korea on April 2, 1991. The statue of our Lady was found weeping tears of blood. In the history of Catholic Church, hundreds of Mother Mary statues are reported weeping tears! She appears from heaven to guide and teach the children whom Jesus entrusted to Her in Calvary.

Basis of Marian Devotion

Popes or any official teaching of the Church, never said to worship Mary. Catholics keep great devotion to Mary because of her unique role in the redemptive work with her son. She is not an ordinary mother. In the birth of a human child, both father and mother cooperate with God to give the child a human flesh. In the case of Jesus,  he received body and blood only from his mother. When Eve was taken from Adam,  he called her “bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh” (Gen. 2:23). Here, Mary can call Jesus more rightly “flesh of my flesh, bone of my bone.” Flesh of Jesus is the material flesh of Mary, and blood of Jesus is the material blood of Mary. When she said “Fiat,” this young girl of Judea was surrendering herself to God’s plan. Abraham became the Father of Nations because of his great faith and total surrender. Here because of her total surrender and extraordinary faith, Mary became the Mother of new kingdom that was established by Jesus. After all, she is the most precious gift we receive from the deathbed of Jesus. From the cross when Jesus uttered, “Behold your mother” (Jn. 19:27). She became not only the mother of John, but of all whom he redeemed through that crucifixion. She is the mother of the Church – the mystical body of Jesus.

“Catholics love Mary too much” is an objection against Marian devotion. We can never love Mary more than Jesus loved her. Almighty God was so obedient to her for thirty years. She shred his suffering in Calvary and prayed together with  the apostles for the Holy Spirit. Still, now, it is she who comes from heaven to guide her children from time to time.  The first miracle of Jesus happened just because of her intercession, though it was not  ‘the time’ of Jesus for that. The only homily she ever said as it is written in the Bible is “Do what he tells you to do” (Jn. 2:5).

Mary Had Other Children?

The Catholic belief in the perpetual virginity of Mary was questioned by fundamentalists showing the Biblical passage (Mt. 12:46) which refer ‘Mother and  brothers’ of Jesus, and (Mk. 6:3) which says Jesus as brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon. It also speaks of ‘sisters’ of Jesus. The fact is, in Greek, the word brothers (adelphoi) and sisters (adelpha) were commonly used to denote cousin or kinsman. Aramaic and semitic languages never distinguish between a blood brother, sister or a cousin. ‘Adelphos’ is a plural word that was in use at the time of Jesus for a community based on ‘identity of origin.’ (Ref: Vines Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words) In the Council of Constantinople  II (553-554), we see two references about Mary as ‘Ever Virgin.’ Before the Bible was formed, all early Christians accepted this truth. St. Jerome (formator of Vulgate) 345,  Augustine  354, Athanasius of Alexandria 293, are some of them. Even the protestant reformer Martin Luther admits it: “It is an article of faith that Mary is the Mother of the Lord and still a virgin… Christ came forth from a womb left perfectly intact.” (The works of Luther by Weimer, Pg. 510) (All the ancient Orthodox Eastern Churches which are expelled from Catholic Church, also believe this)

Immaculate Conception of Mary is Biblically Supported

By Immaculate Conception, we believed God preserved Mary, from her birth, as “sinless.” “All men  have sinned and lost the grace of God” (Rom. 3:23). “Through Adam all men became sinful” (Rom. 5:12). Christian belief holds we are freed from this bondage of sin through baptism and faith. But without receiving the baptism, Mary had the fullness of God’s grace as Angel Gabriel revealed “Hail Mary, full of grace” (Lk. 1:28). The Greek word ‘Charitoo’ which means ‘fullness of grace’ or ‘highly favored with grace,’ is used only two times in the Bible. 1. Before Christ’s redemption, in the salutation of Gabriel  2. After Christ’s redemption (Eph. 1:6) ‘as Christ's grace given to us.’ It shows that the fruits of redemption were given to Mary in advance; she became “highly favored with grace.” The words of the angel ‘full of grace’ itself shows she is sinless.
Gen. 3:15 – “I will put enmity between you and the woman, between your offspring and hers; she will strike at your head.” From early centuries of Christianity, this was considered as a prophecy about Mary and her son Jesus (Iraneus of Lyons 140 A.D.). This enmity is nothing but mutual hatred between Mary and sin, between Christ and sin. It can never be true if Mary also is stained by sin. As she was the woman foretold in Genesis, Jesus from the cross mentioned Mary as “Woman.”

In the Old Testament, there are many evidences that God prepared the mothers for the purity of their child who are the ‘selected one’ of God. God asked the mother of Samson to be pure (Jud. 13:3-4). Manoah was asked to keep the wife pure (Jud. 13:13-14). How much more God is interested to keep the state of His own Mother’s womb?

The early Fathers of the Church, whom we have to trust to know the genuine nature of the Bible and those who formed the Canons of the Bible, all defended this early Christian faith.  Iraneus of Lyons AD 140 is the one who wrote the term ‘Immaculate’ and ‘most pure’ for Mary.  St. Augustine of Hippo (AD395) wrote: “Mary; free from original sin.”

It was Pope Pius IX who proclaimed this early belief of Christians as official (Ex Cathedra) in AD 1854.  In 1858, Blessed Virgin Mary herself appeared to a young girl Bernadette in Lourdes and revealed:  “I am the Immaculate Conception.”

The Biblical Basis of the Assumption of Mary

The assumption  of Mary is based on the faith in her Immaculate Conception.  As she was sinless – ‘full of grace’ at the end of her earthly life – she was received body and soul into heavenly glory.  The Bible says “death is the wages of sin” (Rom 6:23).  “Sin came to this world through one person….thus death came to all” (Rom 5:12).  As Mary was sinless, she need not accept the wages of sin.  She destroyed sin as she is the ‘woman’ who struck  at the head of  Satan” (Gen 3:15).   Freedom of Mary from the original sin frees her from its consequences also.  It is to fulfill the prophecies about her in Gen 3:15.  In the early Christian centuries, this was accepted as a revealed truth.  Even some apocryphal books narrate “The body of the Mother of God should never lie in sepulcher.”

Mary: The Mother of God?

“God has a mother? Is she older than God himself?”  Sometimes we hear this accusation of Catholic opponents from their TV channels.  When we call her “The Mother of God,” it means Mary is the mother of Jesus who is the incarnation of God.  A mother who is created by her son.  The masterpiece of God’s creation.  A creature with ‘the fullness of grace.’  The more we praise Mary, the more we praise God.  An attack to Mary is an attack to God.  When we insult the masterpiece of an artist, we are attacking the artist himself.  When we criticize the music, we indirectly criticize the musician.  In fact, even the protestant reformers Luther and Calvin considered Mary as the “Divine Mother of God.'

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Let The Miracles Speak The Truth!

“He who saw it has borne witness, his testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth, in order that you may believe.” (Jn. 19:35)

Naju, Korea – This Eucharistic miracle, which challenged all scientific explanations, happened in Naju, Korea, between May 1988 and October 1996. When Julia Kim a devote woman received the Holy Eucharist, immediately it changed into visible flesh and blood in the form of a heart. Thousands witnessed this miracle as it repeated many times in her life. Pope John Paul II  witnessed this great miracle during a mass in his private chapel on October 31, 1995, in Vatican. 

Blood from the Holy Host! – This Eucharistic miracle happened in Rome during the mass celebrated by Bishop Claudio Gatti on 11th of June 2000, feast of Pentecost. He says: “While I was celebrating the mass, as soon as I finished saying the wording of the consecration of the bread, blood began to come out from my host. Time stopped for me. I was bending over the host that I was holding tightly in my hands and I was gazing at the divine blood that was spreading on a great part of its surface…I passed between the pews of the church so that the people present could see them closely. When I did the ‘fraction of bread’ the blood kept on dropping before the eyes of the present people…”


Bleeding Host! – This miracle happened in 1247 when a woman of Santarem after receiving Holy Host, took it home for black magic. She placed the Host in her handkerchief. The Host started to bleed profusely. Rays of bright light came from the trunk. Many people witnessed it. They called the parish priest and the Host was taken back to the church.


Kerala, India  - This miracle that is videographed and witnessed by thousands, happened in Kerala, a state of India, in 1999. When Rani Kanjikode, a devotee of Blessed Mother, received Holy Communion in her parish church, it was changed into real flesh and blood. Three times this miracle happened in different occasions. All of them were witnessed by priests, doctors, and even unbelievers. This photo was taken when the miracle occurred in a huge Catholic convention. Archbishop of Trichur, Kerala, Dr. Jacob Thoonkuzy D.D., was the main celebrant. While 500,000 people were witnessing, the Host started to bleed. She was asked to come to the stage and it was shown to all those who were there.

Miracle of Lanciano – This great and most famous miracle of the Catholic Church happened in Lanciano, Italy 700 A.D. A priest, who disbelieved in the real presence of Jesus in Eucharist, was offering mass in St. Legontian Church. At the time of consecration, when he pronounced ‘this is my body…this is my blood,’ the host and wine visibly turned into flesh and blood. The priest and those who were attending the mass, started to cry for mercy. The church authorities and the Vatican ordered scientific studies about it in 1574, 1637, 1770, and in 1886. In 1970-71, rigoruous scientific analysis conducted by a team of world famous pathologists and doctors headed by Dr. Odorardo Linoli, proved it as (1) The blood is real blood and the flesh is real flesh of human species; (2) The flesh consists of muscular tissue of myocardium (heart tissue); (3) The blood type is identical in the blood and in the flesh, type AB; (4) No materials or agents used for preservation of it, which are left in their original state for 12 centuries. Still it remains an unexplainable phenomenon for scientists.