Martha Fernandez-Sardina, Director of the Office of Evangelization in the Archdiocese of San Antonio, sat down with Deacon Harold to discuss the upcoming Year of Faith, which starts October 11, 2012 and end November 24, 2013. Click on the links below to watch and listen to their great discussion!
Listen to Part ONE.
Listen to Part TWO.
Listen to Part THREE.
The Year of Faith commemorates the 50th Anniversary of the start of Vatican II (October 11, 1962) and the 20th Anniversary of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (October 11, 1992).
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Why does the Catholic Church make such a big deal about Mary? Whenever I talk to non-Catholics about Mary, they quote 1 Timothy 2:5: There is one mediator between God and man, Christ Jesus. “You don’t have to go through Mary to get to Jesus,” they say, “Just go straight to God.” So I ask them: “If your child were very sick, would you ask me to pray for her?” “Yes.” “Would you ask other family members and members of your church to pray for her, too?” “Yes, of course,” they reply. So I say, “Why bother asking us for prayers? You don’t have to go through me or anyone else to get to Jesus. Just go straight to God.”
Then I add: “Mary is in heaven, where we hope to be one day. Is she literally closer to God than we are here on earth?” “Yes.” “And because she is in the presence of God, is she—in a real sense—more alive than we are?” “OK, I agree with that.” “Then, since Mary is more alive and closer to God than we are, why wouldn’t we ask her to pray for us?”
What the Church teaches about our Blessed Mother, properly understood and practiced, does not lead believers away from, but rather more deeply into relationship with Christ. Through Mary, God intervenes in human history, setting into motion a plan for our redemption: since it was through the woman—through the heart of love—that sin entered into the world, it will be through the heart of love that God effects salvation for the world. The covenant of love and life lost through the “No” of Eve, the “mother of all the living,” will be restored in Christ through the “Yes” of Virgin Mary, the Mother of the Redeemer. The Old Eve offered us fruit born from the tree that lead to death; the New Eve brings forth the fruit of her womb who gives us everlasting life.
©2012 Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers
Catholic Apologist extraordinaire Father Mitch Pacwa, S.J., Ph.D., a popular Eternal World Television Network (EWTN) personality and host of numerous series, including EWTN Live, Threshold of Hope, and the Open Line radio program, has published the following review of, The Mass in Sacred Scripture:
“Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers begins this booklet with an informative overview of the stages of the English translation of the Mass and its relationship to the Second Vatican Council, the debate over principles of translation, and the relevance of both of these to the Catholic worship within the context of the Mass. This overview helps the reader understand that the changes in translations are not arbitrary whims of taste but are rooted in important principles that give insight into the next stage of integrating worship into the whole of Catholic life in the modern world. Then, the bulk of the book links each liturgical prayer with its Scriptural root, line-by-line, prayer-by-prayer. The average Catholic will benefit from bringing this booklet to periods of prayer and meditation in order to contemplate the Word of God as the verbal source of the liturgy, which itself is the source and summit of the whole Christian life (Vatican II, Sacrosanctum Concilium, 10; Lumen Gentium 11).”
– Fr. Mitch Pacwa, S.J., Ph.D., Author, The Year of Faith: A Bible Study Guide for Catholics
Father Pacwa has taught at the high school, university, and seminary levels. Being a well-known biblical scholar, he has lectured at hundreds of conferences and churches around the world, and has appeared on and hosted international radio and television programs. Father Pacwa is fluent in twelve languages and has a unique understanding of the peoples and cultures of the Middle East.
In addition to his duties at EWTN, Father Pacwa is the Founder and President of Ignatius Productions, and had authored numerous books, including How to Listen When God Is Speaking: A Guide for Modern-day Catholics, Go In Peace: Your Guide to the Purpose and Power of Confession, Catholics And The New Age, Father, Forgive Me, For I Am Frustrated, and his latest work The Year of Faith: A Bible Study Guide for Catholics.
Find out all about Fr. Mitch HERE.
Download The Mass in Sacred Scripture as an e-booklet HERE or purchase a hard copy at Deacon Harold’s store.
©2012 Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers