Author: Shirley Aaron

Repent From Jealousy And Start Exploring Your God Given Potentials. 

Repent From Jealousy And Start Exploring Your God Given Potentials. 

*Repent from Jealousy and Start Exploring Your God-given Potentials*

(Homily for Friday 22nd March 2019).

_“Here comes this dreamer. Come now, let us kill him and throw him into one of the pits; then we shall say that a wild beast has devoured him, and we shall see what will become of his dreams” *(Genesis 37:19-20).*_

The parable of the householder who planted a vineyard teaches us a lesson; that God expects us to be fruitful. He knows what we are made of. If the householder had not planted rich seeds, he would not send people to ask for the fruits. God demands our fruits because He knows we have all it takes to deliver.

You are created to excel. You have talents, you have gifts, you are a bundle of potentials. Regardless of whatever anyone may have said to you in the past, just bear this one truth in mind; you have the seed of God within you, you are capable of much more than you think.

As much as God has so endowed you with gifts, know that there would always be people who would do everything to try to stop you from shining like Joseph’s brothers. What offence did Joseph commit against his brothers to warrant such hatred? Nothing, other than the fact that Joseph discovered his potentials early in life.

The brothers of Joseph made a costly mistake; one that we often make ourselves. Instead of looking inwards to explore the rich deposits God has put in us, we start to envy others for their natural gifts as if to say they are any better than us.

Let’s reason together, comparing yourself with others is a crime against humanity. This is because we are all unique creatures. No two persons are born with the same amount of gifts and abilities. It is just like a razor blade comparing itself with an axe. Yes, both of them can cut things, but while the razor is designed to cut hair for instance, the axe is designed to cut trees.

Why do I become sad when I see people excelling in life? Am I a razor feeling sad for my inability to cut trees or an axe wishing I could shave beards? Do I even realize it is wrong for me to think that I am less privileged or unfortunate in life just because I am not able to do things that others are doing? Hating others for their gifts is just a sign of failure on our part to discover ours.

*As much as I cannot deny my jealousy towards others, I must bear in mind that there are persons who are secretly praying for something bad to happen to me so that they can feel good; so that they can have something to gossip and laugh.*

Again, bear in mind that the hatred of others CANNOT stop you from actualizing your full potentials so long as you remain positive and take advantage of every stumbling block. At times, when people think they are going to put an end to your dreams, they do not realize they are indirectly helping you get there.

My dear, whatever be the case, don’t forget you are divinely created by God, never forget your potentials can never die. Just keep shining; keep bearing fruits; keep moving. If you cannot fly, then run, if you cannot run, then walk, if you cannot walk, crawl. If they throw a stone at you, turn it into a brick and build a house with it. If they throw hot water on you, use it to boil your food and eat.

*Never give up on you! Be Fruitful!* (Genesis 1:22).

Let us Pray: Lord Jesus, when you come to collect my fruits, may I never be found wanting, Amen!

*Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Friday of the 2nd Week of Lent. Bible Study: Genesis 37:3-28, Psalm 105 and Matthew 21:33-46).*

-Fr. Abu.

What Are The Qualifications Of An Exorcist? Who Can Become An Exorcist? 

What Are The Qualifications Of An Exorcist? Who Can Become An Exorcist? 

Can a lay person train and qualify to be an exorcist? What are the qualifications? 

The Church has found the need to train more priests for this specialized ministry. Due to an increase in Satanism and occultic practices, requests for exorcists have been steadily on the rise over the past decade. In fact, according to some reports, the number of exorcists in the US has increased from 12 to 50 in the past few years.

Who are these individuals who are becoming exorcists?

The Catholic Church does not allow just anyone to become an exorcist. In fact, there is a specific set of qualifications that must be met before admitting anyone into this harrowing ministry.

The first requirement is the priesthood. But even then, according to the Roman Ritual, only certain priests can become exorcists.

A priest — one who is expressly and particularly authorized by the Ordinary — when he intends to perform an exorcism over persons tormented by the devil, must be properly distinguished for his piety, prudence, and integrity of life. He should fulfill this devout undertaking in all constancy and humility, being utterly immune to any striving for human aggrandizement, and relying, not on his own, but on the divine power. Moreover, he ought to be of mature years, and revered not alone for his office but for his moral qualities.

Furthermore, “In order to exercise his ministry rightly, he should resort to a great deal more study of the matter … by examining approved authors and cases from experience.”

This study should include a complete understanding of psychology and the ability to discern the difference between medical issues and spiritual attacks.

[The exorcist] should not believe too readily that a person is possessed by an evil spirit; but he ought to ascertain the signs by which a person possessed can be distinguished from one who is suffering from some illness, especially one of a psychological nature.

In other words, priests who become exorcists are holy men who do not seek out this ministry for power or self-gain, but are called by God for this task. It takes many years of careful study before a priest is properly prepared for such an endeavor and the ministry is not taken lightly.

Under no circumstances is a lay person permitted to become an exorcist, though laypeople can “assist” an exorcist on special occasions. Similar rules apply to these assistants — they should have a devout prayer life united to the sacraments. They need to be properly prepared for such an experience, as a person attached to sin could severely hamper the exorcism process.

The devil will try with all of his might to further his influence during an exorcism, and so anyone involved with casting out a demon must rely entirely on the power of God to protect them.

It’s a spiritually dangerous vocation, one that requires a great deal of holiness and humility.

Ethiopian Catholic Church Holds A Requiem Mass For Ethiopian Airlines Crash Victims. 

Ethiopian Catholic Church Holds A Requiem Mass For Ethiopian Airlines Crash Victims. 

Ethiopian Catholic Church holds a Requiem Mass for Ethiopian Airlines crash victims.

A requiem Mass presided by His Eminence, Cardinal Berhaneyesus, CM and con-celebrated by Bishops and priests in Ethiopia was held for the 157 victims of the Ethiopian airlines ET 302 crash on March 14, 2019. The Mass was held at the Holy Savior Parish in Addis Ababa organized by the Ethiopian Catholic Church and the International Catholic Community in Addis Ababa.

On the occasion, a bouquet of 157 white roses was prepared and 157 candles were lit to represent every victim of the crash. The parents and families of Mrs. Ama Teklemariam, a Catholic who was a crew member of ET 302, were also present at the Mass praying for the souls of all those who lost their lives and for the consolation of all who lost their loved ones.

His Grace Archbishop Luigi Bianco, Apostolic Nuncio to Ethiopia and Djibouti and Special Delegate to Somalia also read out the Blessing of the Holy Father, Pope Francis who offered prayers for the departed and entrusted their souls to God. The Holy Father also invokes the God of consolation to console the hearts of the bereaved families.

Speaking at the end of the Requiem Mass, Mr. Fikire Degef, who attended the event representing Ethiopian Airlines CEO Mr. Tewolde GebreMariam, said that the victims have brought the world together in grief, shock and above all in prayer. He assured that Ethiopian Airlines will do its best to support the families of the victims to get closure.

“We at Ethiopian Airlines pray that they may rest in peace. We will work hard to accompany the families of the victims through this difficult time,” he said.

Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), Dr. Vera Songwe, thanked the Catholic Church for bringing together the families, friends and colleagues of the victims and the international community in Addis Ababa to pray together with all the faithful for the victims souls and for the consolation of their families. She added that such a tragedy reminds us of our mortality and we have a limited time on this earth to do good in the world.

“We hope in coming together in this Mass to be consoled. The victims woke up that day hoping to do good for this world, to serve others. A tragedy like this reminds us of our mortality and encourages us to do better with our time on earth,” said the Under-Secretary General.

Speaking on the occasion was also H.E. Madame Amb. Catherine Mwangi, Ambassador of Kenya to Ethiopia. She also thanked the Church for gathering the congregation to pray for the departed. She said that coming face to face with the families of departed ones makes the situation even more saddening. She called on the entire congregation to pray for their consolation.

Let us pray so that God may grant them the grace to make meaning of their lives without their loved ones. Let us also pray for the government of Ethiopia and for Ethiopian Airlines so that they can be able to handle the bereaved families in a way they can get closure,” asked the Ambassador.

Before the final Blessing H.Em. Cardinal Berhaneyesus, CM, concluded the Requiem Mass by saying such a tragedy should remind us that we should live everyday as though it was the last day of our lives with integrity.

We should always be ready always for the coming of our Lord, we should decide to drop all that is bad in this world and chose only what is good. We should consider our differences as coloring to our world and live in harmony witnessing the Gospel in our lives. With such effort we are called to bring our country to a better development and this is a responsibility we have as citizens of Ethiopia and of the world,” the Cardinal said recalling the difficult time Ethiopia is currently experiencing.

He also called on all to unite in prayer for the souls of the departed in the accident and for the consolation of the bereaved families. He also prayed for Ethiopian Airlines management and staff that God may grant them the Grace to continue their services with the usual success.

Eternal rest grant unto them oh Lord, and let your perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace, Amen. 

The ‘Kingdom Of God’ Is The Catholic Church. 

The ‘Kingdom Of God’ Is The Catholic Church. 

THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS THE CATHOLIC CHURCH!!!!!!!

Why did Jesus Christ become Incarnate in the first place? Was it to leave us with a book, or to establish a Church? Well, in this verse He told us one of the reasons:

But He said to them: “To the other towns also I must PROCLAIM THE KINGDOM OF GOD, FOR THIS IS WHY I HAVE BEEN SENT”.

Luke 4:43.

“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.”.

Luke 19:10.

And how are we, who are the lost ones, to be saved? It is through the Church which He founded.

“Therefore, if you harken to My voice and keep My covenant, you shall be My special possession, dearer to Me than all other people, though all the earth is mine. YOU SHALL BECOME A KINGDOM OF PRIESTS, A HOLY NATION.”

Exodus 19:5-6.

“You, however, are a chosen race, A ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PURCHASED PEOPLE; that you may proclaim the perfections of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

1 Peter 2:9.

The Kingdom of GOD will last forever:

“And when your days shall be fulfilled and you shall sleep with your fathers, I will raise up your seed after you, which shall proceed out of your bowels, and I WILL ESTABLISH HIS KINGDOM. HE SHALL BUILD A HOUSE TO MY NAME, AND I WILL ESTABLISH THE THRONE OF HIS KINGDOM FOREVER…AND YOUR HOUSE SHALL BE FAITHFUL, AND YOUR KINGDOM FOREVER BEFORE YOUR FACE AND YOUR THRONE SHALL BE FIRM FOREVER.”

2 Samuel 7:13, 16.

“And among my sons (for the Lord has given me many sons) he has chosen Solomon my son, to sit upon the THRONE OF THE KINGDOM OF THE LORD OVER ISRAEL. And He said to me: Solomon My son SHALL BUILD MY HOUSE AND MY COURTS, FOR I HAVE CHOSEN HIM TO BE MY SON, AND I WILL BE A FATHER TO HIM.”

1 Chronicles 28:5-6.

So Solomon will sit on the throne of the Kingdom of GOD, an earthly kingdom, clearly a type of the Church which will be manifested in the New Testament.

“He shall sit upon the throne of David, and upon his Kingdom, to establish it and strengthen it with judgment and with justice, FROM HENCEFORTH AND FOREVER.”

Isaiah 9:7.

“He shall be great, and be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord GOD will give Him the throne of David His father, and He shall be King over the House of Jacob forever; and OF HIS KINGDOM THERE SHALL BE NO END.”

Luke 1:32-33.

And He said: “To what shall we liken the Kingdom of GOD; or to what parable shall we compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown upon the earth, is the smallest of all seeds upon the earth; yet when it is sown, it grows up and becomes larger than any herb, and puts out great branches, so that the birds of the air can dwell beneath its shade.”

Mark 4:30-32. See also, Mark 4:26-29.

This is a clear analogy of the Church which Jesus Christ founded.

“But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of GOD, then the Kingdom of GOD has come upon you.”

Matthew 12:28. See also, Luke 11:20.

Note: Saint Matthew normally used the term Kingdom of Heaven instead of Kingdom of GOD, as his Gospel was addressed to the Jews and they were forbidden to even say the Name of GOD.

“And I will give you the Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven; and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

Matthew 16:19.

Keys are a symbol of Authority as shown in Isaiah 22:2024, and of the Primacy of the one receiving them. Also notice the earthly connotation denoting that the Kingdom of Heaven is here on earth.

“The Son of Man will send forth his angels, and they will gather OUT OF HIS KINGDOM all scandals and those who work iniquity.”

Matthew 13:41.

Since there are no scandals or workers of iniquity in heaven, His Kingdom has to be an earthly kingdom.

“Amen I say to you, there are some of those standing here who will not taste death, till they have seen the Son of Man coming in His Kingdom.”

Matthew 16:28.

Obviously all of those He spoke to died, so His Kingdom had to be that of His Church on earth.

“But woe to you, Scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because YOU SHUT THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN AGAINST MEN. FOR YOU YOURSELVES DO NOT GO IN, NOR DO YOU ALLOW THOSE GOING IN TO ENTER.”

Matthew 23:13.

Did the Scribes and Pharisees have any control over a heavenly kingdom? It had to be earthly.

“And I appoint to you a Kingdom even as My Father has appointed to Me.”

Luke 22:29.

Jesus passed His Kingdom to His Apostles.

“Then comes the end, when He delivers the Kingdom to GOD the Father, when He does away with all sovereignty, authority and power.”

1 Corinthians 15:24.

Obviously the Kingdom of GOD is not heaven, as this verse tells us.

“He has rescued us from the power of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of His Beloved Son, in whom we have our redemption, the remission of our sins.”

Colossians 1:13-14.

We have the remission of sins through the Sacrament of Reconciliation in the Catholic Church.

The Church is the “Sons of the Kingdom, the good seed”.

Matthew 13:38.

The Church is the “Key of Knowledge”, taken by heretics, from those seeking to enter the Kingdom.

Matthew 23:13, Luke 11:52.

The scribes learned from the Kingdom of Heaven, the Church, and brought forth things both new and old,

Matthew 13:52.

The Church is the “Kingdom which cannot be shaken”.

Hebrews 12:28.

“But in the days of those kingdoms, the GOD of heaven will set up a Kingdom THAT SHALL NEVER BE DESTROYED, and His Kingdom SHALL NOT BE DELIVERED UP TO ANOTHER PEOPLE; AND IT SHALL BREAK IN PIECES, AND SHALL CONSUME ALL THESE KINGDOMS, AND ITSELF SHALL STAND FOREVER.”

Daniel 2:44.

Saint Paul had fellow workers who were members of the Kingdom of GOD,

Colossians 4:11.

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