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Catholic school teachers are 'ministers', SCOTUS rules

Catholic school teachers are 'ministers', SCOTUS rules

Little Sisters win big at Supreme Court

Little Sisters win big at Supreme Court

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Calling for conversion

At Walk for Unity: 'Prayer changes things'

At Walk for Unity: 'Prayer changes things'

Official appointments for July 2020

Official appointments for July 2020

At Mass for Unity Against Racism: We cannot deny the sin or its consequences

At Mass for Unity Against Racism: We cannot deny the sin or its consequences

Archdiocesan newspapers, archbishop win 18 awards

Archdiocesan newspapers, archbishop win 18 awards

Home-grown vocations

Home-grown vocations

Junípero Serra: a saint for our times

Junípero Serra: a saint for our times

Bishops praise Supreme Court decision on school funding

Bishops praise Supreme Court decision on school funding

17 priests mark jubilees in 2020

17 priests mark jubilees in 2020

La carrera digital de los medios católicos, sus retos y fracasos

La carrera digital de los medios católicos, sus retos y fracasos

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'Printed' copies of the Florida Catholic and La Voz Católica are available only online this month. Click on the images below.

Cath·o·hól·ic

Not the prayer of pagans

July 9, 2020

Then Jesus distances himself from the prayer of pagans: “do not heap up empty phrases ...; for they think that they will be heard for their many words” (6:7). Here perhaps Jesus is alluding to that “captatiobenevolentiae” that was the necessary introduction to many ancient prayers: divinity had to be in some way adapted from a long series of praises, of prayers too. Let us consider that scene on Mount Carmel, when the Prophet Elijah challenged the priests of Baal. They shouted, danced, and asked for many things, that their god would listen to them. But Elijah instead remained silent and the Lord revealed himself to Elijah.

Pagans think that one prays by speaking, speaking, speaking, speaking. I also think of many Christians who think that praying is pardon me “talking to God like parrots.” No! One prays from the heart, from within. You instead Jesus says when you pray, address God as a child to his father, who knows the things that are needed before he even asks him for them (cf. Mt 6:8).

The “Our Father” could also be a silent prayer: it is essentially enough to place yourself under God’s gaze, to remember his Fatherly love, and this is all it takes to be satisfied.

It is beautiful to think that our God does not need sacrifices in order to win his favor! Our God needs nothing: in prayer, he only asks that we keep a channel of communication open with him in order to always recognize that we are his most beloved children. He loves us very much.

Source: Pope Francis’ catecheses on the Lord’s Prayer, given during general audiences between Dec. 5, 2018 and May 22, 2019.

Msgr. Kenneth Schwanger

Our Lady of Lourdes Church

My Dear Family of Our Lady of Lourdes,

Happy 4th of July!

I love that we take the time to celebrate Independence Day on the actual day of the holiday. It speaks to the importance that it holds for us as a country.

The Fourth of July is one of my favorite national holidays. How wonderful that we celebrate ourselves as a nation by calling to mind the Declaration of Independence and the great hope and promise that has always been a part of our nation. Independence Day calls us to share in the dreams and expectations of our forefathers and to live as a nation that expects great things of itself and sees itself as a light guiding others to freedom and self-determination.

Our nation needs us. If the United States of America is to realize its potential for good in the lives of its citizens and in the world at large, it must depend on the goodness and industry of its people. Democracy provides a means for free men and women to live together in a manner that affirms the dignity of each person and helps all to prosper. But we must remember that democracy does not make good men and women. It is good men and women that make a democracy great.

May our Independence Day, then, be more than a day of celebration. May it also be a day of decision. Let us commit ourselves anew to living good and holy lives, to allowing the Lord to form and guide us. And let us also commit ourselves to being good citizens, to being active in civic life so that our nation and the world may benefit from the fruits of a nation realizing its promise.

Happy Independence Day!

Msgr. Schwanger
Pastor

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