Category Archives: Faith & Life

MAGISTERIAL AUTHORITY AND LITURGICAL REFORM (5) – “There is still work to be done”

Rev José Mario O Mandía

One of the gifts that the liturgical reform brought to the Church is the more extensive use of Sacred Scripture. Sacrosanctum Concilium taught: “The treasures of the bible are to be opened up more lavishly, so that richer fare may be provided for the faithful at the table of God’s word. In this way a more representative portion of the holy scriptures will be read to the people in the course of a prescribed number of years” (SC 51). The cycle of readings for the Mass provides a lot of material for the meditation of the faithful, thus making them more familiar with the Word of God and immersing them in it.

BITE-SIZE PHILOSOPHY (47) – Is freedom irrational?

Rev José Mario O Mandía

We have seen that freedom is a power that man possesses. Based on what we have seen earlier, we can define freedom as the ability to make conscious and intelligent choices.

JESUS, THE LAMB OF GOD – Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

1 Sam 3:3-10, 19; Ps. 40:2, 4, 7-8, 8-9, 10; 1 Cor 6:13-15, 17-20; Jn 1:35-42
Fernando Armellini SCJ
Claretian Publications

The calling of the first apostles happened by Jordan river, according to John the evangelist. The baptist, captured the true identity of Jesus, as the ‘Lamb of God’. In his mind, nothing summed up the identity of Jesus like ‘the Lamb of God.’ 

GREAT FIGURES OF THE MISSIONARY WORK – The Siam of Domingos de Seixas (2)

Joaquim Magalhães de Castro

The company that produced the film The Legend of Suriyothai (Prommitr Productions), established deals with distributors in several countries in Asia, Europe (Germany and France) and with three of the most powerful Hollywood distributors. Hollywood’s response could not have been better. The Zoentrope of Francis Ford Coppola immediately joined the project, and Coppola himself travelled to Thailand where he edited the film, cutting many of the scenes, not only to make it less long but also “to make it more appealing to the western public.” It remains to be seen how significant was the action of the accomplished American director in the adulteration of the initial purposes of the film…


Ettore Gotti Tedeschi

Dear and beloved entrepreneurs, we think that a commercial enterprise is a common value and needs to be managed and sustained as such. We understand that the economic crisis in progress has hampered or even prevented the development needed to create employment and wealth. We also understand that often, following the consumerist rules imposed to compensate for the collapse of births with the growth of individual consumption, you have agreed to produce superfluous goods, often indebting too much, often seeking a profit in the short time.

UMBRELLAS IN BLOOM – Exclusive Interview With Jason Y Ng

Aurelio Porfiri

In 2014, a large group of Hong Kong people occupied certain areas of the city to protest against the government and to ask for universal suffrage. It was certainly a turning moment for the city.

In Umbrellas in Bloom. Hong Kong’s Occupy movement uncovered (2016, Blacksmith Books), Jason Y Ng describes what happened then.

MARIAN APPARITIONS (50) – Dijon, France

Today, one of the oldest statues of the Blessed Virgin, sometimes referred to as the “Black Virgin” rests on the altar at the Eglise Notre Dame (formerly the Abby of Saint Etienne of Dijon) in Dijon.  Placed there in the 12th Century, this somewhat primitive (yet beautiful) statue has been responsible for several miracles and the saving of the city.

FEAST OF THE MOTHER OF GOD — “Who are you, O Immaculate Conception?”

Arthur Ng


“O Lord, how excellent is Thy Name in all the earth, Who hast made Thee a worthy tabernacle in the Virgin Mary.”

Two hours before his final arrest, St Maximilian Kolbe penned the most important theological reflection of his life. He raised a question that occupied his heart and mind for so many years, a question that he had pondered over and over since the beginning of his religious life: “Who are you, O Immaculate Conception?”

BITE-SIZE PHILOSOPHY (45) — So, why is man unpredictable?


Rev José Mario O Mandía

We have seen that man has the ability to “come up with new ideas” and this is rooted in the fact that he goes beyond the mere appearances of things. We have the ability that helps us to discover — to abstract — the essence of things from the image produced by our internal senses. As we have seen, this sensory image contains the specific characteristics of each individual thing that we know: its color, its shape, its texture, its smell, and so on. The mind goes beyond those appearances.

When we meet a person, our senses only perceive that person’s height, color, and other obvious features. But the senses cannot reach the intangible, the unseen, the essential core. One needs a higher power, the intellect, that is able to abstract the essence. In essay no 7 of this series (March 17 issue), we have seen, moreover, that this higher power carries out three basic operations: simple apprehension, judgment and reasoning.

MARIAN APPARITIONS (49) — Sichem, Belgium

The shrine in Brabant in the duchy of Louvain, is a replacement of the one below Mount Garizim, Israel. Hadrian restored the temple on Mount Garizim and dedicated it to Jupiter. A small Christian community settled there; and on several occasions they suffered greatly at the hands of the Samaritans. In 474 the emperor, to avenge an unjust attack on the sect, gave Mount Garizim to the Christians, who built on it a church dedicated to the Blessed Virgin.

After the Mohammedan conquest, Christianity practically disappeared from the district. The French made amends by erecting a shrine to Mary in the duchy of Louvain. The ancient statue of Our Lady of Sichem, or as Our Lady of ‘Montaigu’, which is the title more commonly used today, has been venerated in Belgium from very early times. The Mother of God rewarded the faithful magnanimously for their pious attention.