Thursday, March 31, 2011

Saturday Marian Conferences 2011

Saturday Marian Conferences 2011
San Carlos Seminary Auditorium
EDSA, Guadalupe Viejo, Makati City
1:00 – 6:00 PM

Dear Marian Devotee:

Praised be Jesus and Mary!

The First Asia Oceania Mariological Conference (AOMC) was held on September 12 to 16, 2009. Mariologists from several Asian and Oceanian countries and some representatives from the Vatican, pleased with the said assembly, looked forward to AOMC II which they hope would take place in 2011. The beautiful experience of AOMC, it was decided, must be shared with all interested to deepen their Marian attachment to Jesus. Thus almost immediately after AOMC the inputs were re-echoed to those interested in several Saturday Mariological Conferences held in San Carlos Seminary.

The conferences also served as prelude to the National Marian Congress on September 8 – 12, 2010, held in the context of the Centennial Jubilee of the Local Church in Lipa. The Mariological Assembly held also in Lipa on December 9-11, 2010, was also an offshoot of these Marian initiatives.

It is my profound joy to announce that PAMMMSPhil (Pueblo Amante de Maria Mariological Marian Society of the Philippines) resumes the Saturday Mariological Conferences in San Carlos Seminary Auditorium. The theme remains as “Mary and the Evangelization of Asia”. The 2011 Marian Conferences prepare for the much awaited AOMC II which will take place in the Capuchin Retreat Center on September 8 to 12. The delegates will join the Mediatrix of All Grace Devotees in the yearly pilgrimage to Lipa.

Please see the enclosure herewith for the schedule. We kindly request if you could please post them in your respective bulletin boards. Furthermore, in order for us to keep you well-informed, we ask if you could get in touch with the Secretariat (Telefax 403-45-34, Mobile 0917-5966031, Email so we can have your contact details recorded and/or updated.

May I again request you to avail of these Marian opportunities to join us in deepening our faith in God with Mary’s help, and be Her ‘evangelizers’, especially in Asia? Moreover, let us harness our initiatives and prayerful efforts to allow Mary to guide us to faithfully accomplish Christ’s plans for our Pueblo Amante de Maria.

Sincerely Yours in Jesus and Mary,
Archbishop Ramón C. Argüelles
February 3, 2011


Schedule of Conferences:

March 19, 2011 “St. Joseph, Protector of the Evangelizing Church”
Speakers: Amb.Howard Dee
Former Philippine Ambassador to the Holy See
Fr. Catalino Arevalo, S.J.
Dean and Professor-Emeritus, Loyola School of Theology

April 2, 2011 “Mary and the Paschal Mystery”
Speaker: Bishop Teodoro Bacani, D.D.
Bishop-Emeritus of Novaliches

May 14, 2011 “Santa Cruzan and the Star of Evangelization”
Speaker: Archbishop Ramon C. Argüelles. D.D.
Archbishop of Lipa

June 18, 2011 “Mary and the New Evangelization of Asia”
Speaker: Bishop Luis Antonio Tagle, D.D.
Bishop of Imus

July 2, 2011 “The Poor of Asia and the Star of Evangelization”
Speaker: Bishop Roberto Mallari, D.D.
Auxiliary Bishop of San Fernando, Pampanga

August 6, 2011 “Mary and the Indigenous People of Asia with Missionary Perspective”
Speaker: Bishop Carlito Cenzon, CICM, D.D.
Bishop of Baguio



1:00 – 2:00 Holy Rosary and/or Film Showing
2:00 – 5:00 Conference and Open Forum
5:00 – 6:00 Eucharistic Celebration (Mass for the Day)

Everyone is welcome. ATTENDANCE IS FREE. Voluntary love offering is appreciated. For inquiries, please contact 403-4534 (telefax no.) or 0917-5966031 (mobile no.). You may also email

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Shame and Sexual Addiction

Notes from our teaching last month c/o Bro. C. This teaching was taken from Falling Forward: The Pursuit of Sexual Purity by Craig Lockwood.

Signs of Brokenness

1. Do you fear something about yourself that will be revealed to others?
2. Do you remember situations in life where you suddenly feel a sudden rush of strong emotions (anger, sadness)?
3. Do you hold on to something or someone in your past?

* Addicts do not want to feel pain by involving self with sex, etc.

Origin of Sexual & Relational Brokenness

1. Parents resort to abuse when they feel overwhelmed by the child's behavior.
2. Sexual abuse relies on boundaries.
3. Physical abuse relies on pain.
4. Verbal abuse relies on SHAME.

SHAME: What is it?

1. Tendency for us to hide ourselves.
2. Common among many cultures.
3. Least exposure but most impacting on life.
4. Designed to curtail negative behavior.

Shame Categories

1. Put-down.
2. Moralizing.
3. Age-based expectations.
4. Gender-based expectations.
5. Competency-based expectations.
6. Comparison.

Effects of Shame

1. Punctures one's self-esteem.
2. May prevent person from life-giving relationships and keep self from interacting with others because there is a part of him that he is ashamed of.
3. Prevents us from fully experiencing ourselves in social gatherings
4. Inhibits all emotions except anger.

There is no emotional expression for shame.

Four Stages of Addiction

1. Preoccupation
- thoughts become focused on his behavior of choice.
- sexualized mental obsessions

2. Ritualization
- Rituals are regularly followed methods of preparing for sexual activity to take place, the beginning of sin.

3. Sexual Compulsivity
- inability to control particular sexual activity.
- the starkest reminder of degradation in addiction, terrible slavery, will paralyzed, no turning back.

4. Resolution
- despair upon falling again, thinking of getting help or hides secret life.

* The addictive cycle produces its own pain which will continue to multiply until external intervention takes place. The more you delay going back to God and seeking help, the more you will fall.

* Going through the addictive cycle produces NEW SHAME.

* We must realize we cannot control our addiction, we need God and Church.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Weekly News (Fourth Week of March 2011)

1. Pope Urges RH Bill Foes Not To Give Up

MANILA, March 25, 2011—Pope Benedict XVI called on Catholics to strengthen and not to give up the fight against any “attacks” to life and the family. [Read More]

2. Holy See Stresses Moral Dimension of Sexuality

GENEVA, Switzerland, MARCH 24, 2011 ( The Holy See is underlining the moral dimension of sexuality, affirming the freedom of the person in acting in this realm. [Read More]

3. Info Missing From Survey Claiming Catholic Support For Gay ‘Marriage’

Washington D.C., Mar 26, 2011 / 07:19 am (CNA).- A survey claiming majority U.S. Catholic support for same-sex “marriage” shows some differences with the “gold standard” of social surveys and did not report important information like the margin of error. [Read More]

4. Apple Pulls Ex-’Gay’ iPhone App after Lobbying Campaign by Hateful Homosexual Activists

On Wednesday, Apple Inc. succumbed to a web-based homosexual lobbying blitz demanding that it drop an “app” for the ex-”gay” ministry Exodus International from its iPhone. [Read More]

5. Filipinos Rally Against Birth Control

Hundreds of thousands of Filipino Catholics rallied today in a show of force against a proposed reproductive health law. [Read More]

6. Glee: Promoting Planned Parenthood’s Sex Education Agenda

Question: Besides MTV’s “Skins”, what TV show today is arguably corrupting our youth and promoting homosexual behavior and sexual activity more than any other? Answer: the heavily promoted and what I find to be aggressively immoral Tuesday night youth indoctrination hour, ‘Glee’. [Read More]

7. Contraception Underlying Cause of Breakdown of Family, Sexual Morality, Says Expert

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 25, 2011 ( – Contraception is the underlying factor responsible for today’s scourge of unwed pregnancies, single-parent families, sexually transmitted diseases, deficient fatherhood, and high abortion rate, says a prominent family expert. [Read More]

8. ‘Catholic,’ ‘Christian’ Gay Projects Funded by Homosexualist Billionaire

March 25, 2011 ( - Top ‘gay-rights’ groups claiming to represent Christians and Catholics, and at least one Jesuit-run college, are being funded by a major homosexualist business magnate with the aim of stirring up dissent within the ranks of the church. [Read More]

9. Premarital Sex Declines: That’s a Problem?

The Centers for Disease Control released a new study on March 3 reporting a significant decline in premarital sexual activity for teenagers and young adults. You might think the news would provoke universal rejoicing, but you’d be wrong. [Read More]

10. The Truth About Love

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Human love and divine love go hand in hand, and separating the two leads to problems that create alienation within and outside the Church, said the papal preacher. [Read More]

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Keys to Recovery from Same-Sex Attraction

[Note: While we are confident that the following list is accurate, we are aware that it can be overwhelming. It would be like handing a newborn baby a list of all the things he will have to learn in the next five years: everything from learning to turn over, learning to walk, becoming potty-trained, learning to talk, discovering he’s not a part of his mommy, learning how to obey, getting ready to read, going to school. . . like we said, overwhelming! This is the “big picture” of how to walk out the goal of recovery. Allow us to encourage you to continually ask the Lord, “What one thing do You want me to do next?” and then do it.]

1. Accept that it’s not going to be easy. Change that challenges our known comfort zone is difficult and painful. You are changing not just one isolated habit, but a collection of thoughts and behaviors that have made up your relational pattern for a lifetime. An important component of recovery is changing the wrong belief about your identity, that “this is me.” This will take an incredible amount of effort, but you don’t have to do it in your own strength: the same power that raised Christ from the dead is available to you. If you are to succeed, you must aggressively engage your will, making deliberate choices to honor God, be self-disciplined, and work with God to form new, healthy habits of relating. Your will is like a steering wheel of a car or the rudder on a ship; you decide the direction in which you’ll go. Use the free will God gave you to choose His directions, and He’ll honor those choices.

2. Pursue the right motivation. Making your family happy won’t do it; saving your marriage won’t do it; not hurting anymore won’t do it. The only motivation adequate to see you through recovery from same-sex attraction (SSA) is complete abandonment to that aching need to live continually in an incredibly intimate one-on-one relationship—-with God Himself. That strong and tender relationship with Him—knowing Him and being wholly known by Him without anything coming between the two of you—is the pure and primary relationship you were created for. It’s why you crave deep relationships so badly, and it’s worth every obedient step of pursuit, no matter how painful or difficult that pursuit may become.

3. Accept that you must make sacrifices to be free and healthy. Recovery and healing always involve “crucifying the flesh (Gal. 5:24),” giving up things that are dear to you but which serve to prop open doors to spiritual bondage and repeated failures. God may ask you to give up friends, social contacts, your career, hobbies, dreams, and desires. There is suffering and sacrifice to get to the joy of holiness and purity, but God lavishes grace on His children when we obey. Whatever you surrender, He will provide an even better replacement—according to God’s definition of “better.”

4. Let go of the lie that you’re different from other people, and no one really understands. The key to recovering from same-sex attraction is radical discipleship, the call that all Christians have in common. Jesus’ call to “follow Me” is the same for you as it is for every other believer. It is a lie that “no one really understands” because Jesus Christ fully understands everything about you. When scripture tells us about His compassion, it means He enters into our experiences and feels what we feel.

5. Trust and obey. There are no shortcuts to these two commands. Homosexual and lesbian lifestyles are built around trusting oneself or depending completely on someone else, not the kind of abandonment to God’s heart and intentions for us that characterize trust. In the context of trusting God, obedience to His commands and His individual leading are absolutely essential. People who have been abused or traumatized by authority figures, which includes many who struggle with same-sex attractions, often have misperceptions about God. Before you can trust Him, you need to find out who He really is, that He is good, and loving, and safe. Asking God’s help to see Him accurately is your first step to learning to trust Him.

6. Commit to sexual purity. This means trusting God for the strength to abstain from physically acting out, engaging in sexual fantasy, pornography and masturbation. Many people who want freedom from homosexuality are also addicted to sex and/or masturbation. As with any other addiction, there are withdrawal pains. Let the misery of not medicating yourself with sexual sin drive you to God instead of your past destructive behaviors. As long as you are making compromises, you can’t hear from God clearly.

7. Accept that you will need to separate yourself from the “stuff” of your connection to the gay lifestyle. Every picture, every memento, everything that connects you to your past is a propped-open door to the bondage of emotional and sexual sin. Recovery means jettisoning everything that triggers you or encourages feelings of longing for what you are no longer a part of.

8. Accept the reality that emotionally healthy life can feel boring—in the beginning. After the drama and excitement of the gay lifestyle, making responsible, God-honoring choices feels black and white in comparison to a color life. This is a lie; it takes a while to discover that healthy living is actually richer and more satisfying than a life that indulges the flesh.

9. Get plugged into a church. Worship with other believers and get involved in a small group such as a Bible study or Sunday School class. It is essential to give back to the Lord in service. You don’t have to experience any level of healing or recovery to help set up chairs! Developing healthy same-sex relationships is key to recovery, and the church is the best place to do that.

10. Develop self-discipline. Do something every day you don’t want to do. The homosexual/lesbian emotional mindset is very self-centered and self-indulgent; recovery means learning to be Christ-centered and self-denying.

11. Remember when you stumble that a fall is not the same as a wholesale return to your old life. There is a difference between a single event and an ongoing habit. When babies learn to walk, they fall down. It’s part of learning to walk. Give yourself grace; God does.

12. Have an accountability partner. You need someone who will ask you specific questions about specific problem areas, on a regular (weekly) basis and to whom you will answer openly and honestly. In addition to your accountability partner, you should have at least three people who know of your struggle. They should be willing to receive a call from you at any time should you feel tempted, discouraged, or overwhelmed. We often refer to these people as your “lifeline” or “fire drill folks” because they are there to talk you out of tough situations. You will need three because not everyone is available all the time. If the first one doesn’t answer, call the next until you reach someone.

13. Develop realistic expectations about recovery. You didn’t get here overnight, and there won’t be any overnight recoveries. God’s timetable is usually a lot longer than what we would prefer! His healing involves going to the root causes of issues of same-gender attraction, not dealing with the symptoms. Because He is more thorough, His healing will also be more complete and lasting. It’s worth the patience and perseverance on your part. Unrealistic prayers such as “God, please make me straight right this instant” and “Take away my desires by tomorrow morning” don’t accomplish anything.

14. Seek out a Christian therapist who has a redemptive perspective of homosexuality. An important component to recovering from same-sex attraction is individual counseling. The counselor must have a biblical understanding that homosexuality is changeable through the power of Jesus Christ (1 Cor. 6:11). Living Hope has a list of people in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area we can refer you to. Outside of the DFW area, contact Exodus International (

15. Avoid being in conversations or locations where you are connecting with just one other person. As you seek to develop healthy same gender relationships it is best to develop these relationships in groups. One on one, exclusive relationships will only lead to emotional dependency. (Emotional dependency is a form of relational idolatry where one person feels a desperate “I-can’t-live-without-you” kind of connection with another.) When you meet for accountability with an accountability partner, it should be done in a public place (i.e. restaurant, Starbucks, etc.)

16. Stop relying on your feelings. Our emotions are largely set up and triggered by our experiences. They aren’t reliable indicators of what is true or even real, and they often skew our perspectives, especially if we’ve suffered emotional trauma by having been wronged physically/emotionally or even emotionally neglected. Relying on your feelings to interpret reality—especially relational reality—and guide you is downright dangerous. God’s Word holds the true perspective. Bounce your perspectives and feelings off of a counselor or accountability partner(s), too.

17. Remember the three “power keys” to recovery. Exodus International has found that there are three elements to the most effective recovery from same-sex attraction: first, be plugged into a good, Bible-believing church. This means both receiving the teaching and being a part of the community. Second, get professional counseling. Third, have a support system consisting of both people who do not struggle with homosexual feelings, and those who do. If you don’t have a real-life support group comprised of other strugglers, Living Hope’s online forums are a good place to find it. (

Reiterating our first point, please remember that nothing worthwhile is achieved without sacrifice and hard work. On average, we find that if you work at this diligently, you can expect the process to take about five years. This does not mean that you will not experience freedom sooner than that, but generally, real orientation shift usually takes significant time. The important thing to remember is that all change happens one day at a time. (The goal is not orientation shift from homosexual to heterosexual—although that does happen in many people as a result of healing and growth—but a shift from same-sex feelings and desires controlling your life, to becoming minor annoyances that you habitually submit to the lordship of Jesus Christ.)

The Lord bless you and keep you as you pursue Him, healing, and wholeness!

(Source: Living Hope Ministries)

Monday, March 21, 2011

March For Life

Letter from Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, D.D. Archbishop of Manila

Dear Bishops, Monsignori, Reverend Fathers and the Laity:

Greetings of peace in the Lord Jesus Christ!

The fundamental love of Filipinos for family and life is under serious threat today. Being the last country standing against the vicious attacks of powers in connivance with law makers, we see the urgent need now to stop the attack by the proposed RH Bill on our valued culture of life. This orchestration instigated by those against life, local and foreign, has to be stopped. We shall all stand united against the assault on life and its values.

On March 25, the Feast of the Annunciation, also the Day of the Unborn Children, we invite all who value life, family and life values to join the Prayer Hour at the Quirino Grandstand (Luneta). We all believe that you will be one to deliver the message that our country will never allow the repressive RH Bill to be passed. The CBCP has made it clear in its Pastoral Letter that the RH Bill does not promote reproduction nor maternal health and destroys the family.

The Mass starts at 4:30 in the afternoon. We invite you to come and pray for unity of hearts in faith and love.

In the love of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, my paternal blessings.

Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, D.D.
Archbishop of Manila

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Weekly News (Third Week of March 2011)

1. Bishops Worldwide Affirm Solidarity With Japan

OSAKA, Japan, MARCH 17, 2011 ( The disastrous March 11 earthquake and resulting tsunami in Japan has elicited a major show of solidarity from bishops worldwide. [Read More]

2. CBCP to Hold Mass For Anti-RH Bill Lawmakers

MANILA, March 18, 2011— The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines will celebrate the Holy Eucharist next week to recognize the efforts to block the passage of the reproductive health (RH) bill. [Read More]

3. US Bishops Emphasize Booklet on 'Marriage Equality' Is Not Catholic

Washington D.C., Mar 16, 2011 / 02:46 am (CNA).- The U.S. bishops have said that a new booklet advocating “marriage equality” for same-sex couples by a self-identified Catholic group strongly contradicts Church teaching. [Read More]

4. New Bible Draws Critics of Gender-Neutral Language

In the old translation of the world's most popular Bible, John the Evangelist declares: "If anyone says, 'I love God,' yet hates his brother, he is a liar." Make that "brother or sister" in a new translation that includes more gender-neutral language and is drawing criticism from some conservatives who argue the changes can alter the theological message. [Read More]

5. Schools Can Stop Bullying without Promoting Homosexuality or Gender Confusion [Read More]

6. Who is Baby Joseph Maraachli and Why Should I Care?

The world has taken notice of a 14-month old baby from Canada whose family has been fighting the medical establishment since October to help their child breathe. [Read More]

7. The Beauty of Love: Key for Education in Sexual Purity

How does theology of the body’s teaching on chastity affect pastoral practice, and how do we teach and live chastity as a result? [Read More]

8. Despite Tsunami Warnings, Thousands Rally Against ‘Reproductive Health’ Bill in Philippines

MAASIN CITY, Philippines, Thursday March 17, 2011 ( - In the midst of torrential rain and a warning of a potential tsunami from last Friday’s earthquake in Japan, over 7,000 faithful from various parishes in the Diocese of Maasin gathered on March 12 to proclaim their opposition to the government’s so-called reproductive health (RH) bill. [Read More]

9. Catholic Bishop: Battle For Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ Destroying U.S. Democracy

OAKLAND, California, March 16, 2011 ( – The leader of the U.S. Catholic bishops’ committee tasked with defending marriage this week stated that political elites in the United States are subverting democracy and using the issue of same-sex “marriage” to consolidate power into their hands, away from the people. [Read More]

10. Time to 'Go to Joseph'

St. Joseph is so quiet, so humble — and often so forgotten. But, while instituting a new feast for him in 1955, Pius XII advised, “Thus, if you wish to be close to Christ, we again today repeat, ‘Go to Joseph!’” [Read More]

Saturday, March 19, 2011

St. Joseph, The Family Man

Today, on the feast day of St. Joseph, I want to share a private revelation of Our Lord concerning His foster father and His views on family life today. I find this very apt and timely as the family is heavily under siege from the influence of our secularized society. This excerpt is taken from the book Saint Joseph As Seen by Mystics and Historians, pp. 303-304.

Finally I would like to draw the attention of parents to how Joseph made a clever workman of Me, without any help of pedagogical learning. As soon as I was old enough to handle tools, he did not let Me lead a life of idleness,but he started Me to work and he made use of My love for Mary as the means to spur Me to work. I was to make useful things for Mother. That is how he inculcated the respect which every son should have for his mother and the teaching for the future carpenter was based on that respectful and loving incentive.

Where are now the families in which the little ones are taught to love work as a means of pleasing their parents? Children, nowadays, are the tyrants of the house. They grow hard, indifferent, ill-mannered towards their parents. They consider their parents as their servants, their slaves. They do not love their parents and they are scarcely loved by them. The reason is that, while you allow your children to become objectionable overbearing fellows, you become detached from them with shameful indifference.

They are everybody's children, except yours, oh parents of the twentieth century. They are the children of the nurse, of the governess, of the college...if you are rich people. They belong to their companions; they are the children of the streets, of the schools...if you are poor. But they are not yours. You, mothers, give birth to them and that is all. And you, fathers, do exactly the same. But a son is not only flesh. He has a mind, a heart, a soul. Believe Me, no one is more entitled and more obliged than a father and a mother to form that mind, that heart, that soul.

A family is necessary: it exists and must exist. There is no theory or progress capable of destroying this truth without causing ruin. A shattered family can but yield men and women who in future will be more perverted, and will cause greater and greater ruin. And I tell you most solemnly that it would be better if there were no more marriages and no more children on the earth, rather than have families less united than the tribes of monkeys, families which are not schools of virtue, of work, of love, of religion, but a babel in which everyone lives on his own, like disengaged gears which end up by breaking.

Broken families. You break up the most holy way of social living and you see and suffer the consequences. You may continue thus, if you so wish. But do not complain if this world is becoming a deeper and deeper hell, a dwelling place of monsters who devour families and nations. You want it. Let it be so.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Are Catholics Missing Out On Tithing?

I attended a Feast session in Manila a couple of weeks ago and the topic of the talk was on tithing. I give money when the collection basket is passed around during Sunday Mass, but I must admit it's nowhere near 10% of my monthly income, more often than not just a few pieces of coin. That attitude is slowly beginning to change, thanks to this eye-opening talk. But can tithing make us better Christians? I'm posting here an article of Bro. Bo Sanchez. I hope we all become convinced in our hearts to make tithing a habit not out of obligation, but out of generous giving.

There's a born-again church in The Fort that built a P400 million building. They're expanding that structure and are building another one worth P500 million. This church has now 500+ churches spread all over the world, 300+ of which are in Africa. There's another born-again church building, a mega structure in C5 costing P2.5 billion. They've been able to build 100+ home churches in mainland China. There's another church in Davao called Kingdom of Jesus Christ. Pastor Apollo Quiboloy broadcasts his message through his own television station plus 500 affiliate cable channels. His church has now spread to 100+ countries around the world. Where do they get all the money to do all these? Easy. Their members practice Tithing.

Catholics? Many Catholics don't even know what it is. Thus, we're missing out on the many blessings of Tithing. Both individually and corporately. We're known around the world as the Church that has the noisiest offering in the planet. "Kling, klang, klong..." Because everyone gives coins.

Here's the theological reason for not teaching Tithing: As Catholics, we believe that Tithing is an Old Testament Law, not a New Testament Law. So we teach generosity, not Tithing.

I'm a communicator. I've been one for 30+ years. And here's a rule in communication: Always be specific, not vague. I've learned that whenever I teach people something vague, they'll have a hard time learning the lesson or putting it into practice.

Yes, we teach people to be generous. But what does generous mean? The options are endless. And the more options you give, the more confused people are, the more inaction there will be. Does generosity mean that Catholics give coins? Does generosity mean that Catholics pull out - at least a paper bill? A friend told me that before he joined the Feast, he felt very proud he gave P20 every Sunday, even if he was earning P100,000 a month.

Does generosity mean that Catholics give until it hurts? Well I know of a millionaire who felt pain when he couldn't find P20 in his wallet - he was forced to give P50.

Here's my point: Even if Tithing isn't a Law anymore, we need to teach Tithing as a powerful guideline to follow - something that will bless our life abundantly! Because God promised He would return whatever we give a hundredfold. And God fulfills His promise. This space or even tons of books are not enough to record all the testimonies how people receive blessings double or more than what they give to God - through the Church or to our faith community. Instead of giving vague instructions like...

"Give whatever you can give cheerfully..."
"Give as the Holy Spirit inspires you to..."
"Give what your heart dictates..."

Why not just teach: "Give 10% of your income or more." Period.

I'm worried. Catholics aren't receiving the blessings of Tithing because we don't teach it!

That won't happen to you. Because you'll hear it from me today. And today, you'll receive the rewards of Tithing!

"Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it." - Malachi 3:10

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

CBCP Launches Book on Homosexuality

This is good news for us! The Filipino edition of the book 'Homosexuality and the Catholic Church' has now been officially launched and recognized by the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP). Watch this news clip courtesy of GMA-7. (Note: The news is narrated in Filipino)

For the latest Philippine news stories and videos, visit GMANews.TV

If you want to get a copy of this book, you can inquire directly at CBCP office in Intramuros or you can contact us through this blog. Our contact details are on the sidebar. Each book costs P250. You can also browse my post on this book for more information.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Weekly News (Second Week of March 2011)

1. Pope Praying for Japan's Quake Victims

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 11, 2011 ( Benedict XVI is assuring the victims of the 8.9 magnitude earthquake that hit off the north eastern coast of Japan today of his prayers and spiritual closeness. [Read More]

2. Almsgiving Brings Us Closer to God, Says Pope

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 11, 2011 ( Benedict XVI is encouraging charitable giving, noting that this brings us closer to God and facilitates our own conversion. [Read More]

3. Veritas Pushes ‘No Meat Friday’ Campaign

MANILA, March 10, 2011— There is a movement afoot aimed at changing the way Filipinos eat one day a week at least this season of Lent. [Read More]

4. Homosexual Agenda Set to Erupt at UN in Geneva

GENEVA, March 10 (C-FAM) The international movement to include homosexual behavior and identity within a new, specially protected class of rights is once more setting its sights on the UN Human Rights Council. [Read More]

5. Homosexual Activist: 'Imposed Morality' A Bad Idea

Christians in Britain opposed to the homosexual lifestyle are receiving support from an unexpected source. [Read More]

6. Internet, Social Media Can Help Pro-Lifers Win Abortion Battle

The Internet can transform an organization or cause by making it look more powerful than it really is or weaker, depending on its online presence. A single YouTube video posted by an unknown person can launch an entire organization or movement. [Read More]

7. ‘Baby-selling’ Surrogacy Bill Passes Washington State House

OLYMPIA, Washington, March 11, 2011 ( - A controversial bill that clears the path for homosexual couples to attain legal parentage of children and sets up parameters for paid surrogacy passed late last month along party lines in the Washington state House of Representatives. [Read More]

8. Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ Bill Fails in Maryland House

ANNAPOLIS, Maryland, March 11, 2011 ( - A bill to legalize same-sex “marriage” failed Friday to win enough support for passage from the Maryland House of Delegates. [Read More]

9. Is Theology of the Body Really All About Sex?

What is the relationship between theology of the body and evangelization? [Read More]

10. These 40 Days - Guide For Lent [Read More]

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Homosexuality and the Catholic Church: Book Review (Part 2)

This is a guest post by Resty Odon, a freelance writer whom I have invited to comment on this issue, regarding the much talked about book by Fr. John Harvey. We in the SSA ministry did not expect to get this much publicity from the media but we are grateful for the opportunity to present our stand on this issue from a biblical and Christian perspective.

How God Sees Same-Sex Attraction

Book Review: Harvey, John. (2007). Homosexuality and the Catholic Church: Clear Answers to Difficult Questions. West Chester, PA: Ascension Press. 167 pp.

It's a great joy to learn that a Catholic priest has specialized on a difficult subject often misunderstood even among the clergy and devout Catholics. We may have heard about Fr. John Harvey, OSFS, as the New York-based priest who is the founder of Courage (among other things), but we never knew he wrote a series of books on homosexuality. This book, Homosexuality and the Catholic Church, is his fourth and last, having passed on just late last year. And what a last book it is! It is entirely different from the many books we've read on the subject in that he raises the discourse to a whole new level by looking at the big picture.

Here, he gives us an even better perspective by attempting to marry or at least stitch together strains from subtopics under the continuum spanning behavioral science and psychology, philosophy, Christian morality, and Catholic theology. In the attempt to shed light on a confusing and highly politicized subject, the ideas covered delightfully run the gamut and come unexpectedly one after another. But in Fr. Harvey's expert hands, these thoughts and ideas come together as a fresh guiding light for a conflicted world. I say 'expert' because Fr. Harvey is not only a priest or pastor, but also a moral theologian, a spiritual director/formator, as well as a psychologist/psychotherapist and counselor. He is not just a specialist, but also an integrator of disparate ideas, and this book is a treasure trove of new hopeful and exciting finds.

Structured in the question-and-answer format, the book turns a challenging subject written in a quite intimidating level of language into one that is manageable enough to the widest possible target audience without the risk of oversimplifying complex concepts. The only requirement here, apart from a considerable facility with the language, is an open mind. One can jump from one question to the next and go back and forth without much difficulty. Each question more or less can stand alone but each section flows logically from one question to the next.

Not only are all the right questions asked; focus is also made on the hardest questions, backed up by the most reliable scientific evidence and the most credible and authoritative (i.e. Church-approved) opinions. Same-sex attraction is not only explained here psychologically, but also through sacred Scripture (which for Catholics is always interpreted in the context of Tradition).

Since same-sex attraction (now abbreviated to SSA), on the surface, is about sex, Fr. Harvey can not help but touch on matters closely related to it: masturbation, pornography, addiction/compulsion, chastity, friendship, marriage, and even contraception and same-sex adoption, plus Catholic Church's views on each of these issues since time immemorial. Entire sections have been devoted to these associated subjects in a way that is ample and not dragging.

The reader might be turned off by the heavy, i.e., nosebleed-inducing, theology, but all that is necessary, if one is to gain a better understanding. With some perseverance, the reader emerges edified, struck that the Magisterium of the Church is right all along in trusting its instinct that same-sex attraction is what it really is, an "intrinsically disordered" phenomenon often caused by childhood abuse; it is a disorder that, when acted upon, always violates natural and moral laws. I use the word 'instinct' because the Church's view is in consonance with existing views of the world's major faiths.

If "intrinsically disordered" sounds harsh, that's probably the harshest phrase one can ever find in this book. More than being informative, the book is a carefully calibrated explanation, exhibiting an amount of care and compassion I seldom come across in the other works I have perused. Fr. Harvey was so kind to avoid using words loaded with stigma. He avoids mention of neurosis, sickness, disease, or mental illness. He cautions against labeling and easy stereotyping, avoiding the usual pitfalls of politically incendiary words and phrases. Far from causing further animosities, divisions, and wars, Fr. Harvey instead enlightens with qualifications that are mind-openers without infantilizing his subject group. He offers the hope of change to those who are willing, with no one being forced to do what he or she doesn't believe in. To him, the terms 'homosexual,' 'gay,' and 'lesbian' should no longer be used because these labels tend to define the whole person suffering from same-sex attraction; he prefers the term 'same-sex attraction,' which focuses on just one aspect of a person and does not define the person in his or her totality.

Fr. Harvey is hesitant as well to use 'sex orientation,' for he says it implies, wrongly, that it is a permanent condition (it is not; it is changeable). Furthermore, he uses 'trauma' instead of 'abuse,' which tends to presume intentionality on the part of the parent/caregiver. He uses 'subrational tendency' instead of 'neurosis' outright. Personally, I feel edified, even mortified, by the level of compassion exhibited that I am moved to contrition. This book exposes my great misunderstanding, even ignorance, of same-sex attraction.

His choice of terms can hardly be called politically correct either, because when he proceeds to explain the causes (or etiology) of SSA, he doesn't blink, covering all the bases and calling a spade a spade. He never shirks from his duty to tell the truth, using the best specialists (mostly Elizabeth Moberly and Gerard van den Aardweg) to back up his claims.

But the difference is he tells the truth without coming off hate-filled and discriminatory or ridiculing or looking down on SSA sufferers. He even inserts the essential reminder never to judge the SSA sufferer rashly, for we do not know exactly the issues he or she is dealing with (p. 16).

The book is peppered with so many insights we never saw coming. Here are my quick paraphrases: "God does not make people homosexual, but allows it for some mysterious reason" (p. 13). "Nobody ever chose to be homosexual" (p. 15). (Do gays ever really want to be gay?) "Continence is different from (interior) chastity" (p. 15). "98% of the population are not 'homosexual'" (p. 11). "Same-sex attraction per se is not pathological, but an attempt to solve one's gender identity problem. What is pathological is the defensive detachment that results in attachment loss and intensified desire to compensate for that perceived loss" (p. 5-6). "Bisexuality is really a form of homosexuality" (p. 13). The only fault I can see in this book is its numerous typographical errors. But that's a minor complaint side by side the important ideas and subtle distinctions it puts forth. I predict this book will be Fr. Harvey's long-lasting legacy.

Among other wonderful discoveries here include the use of St. Francis of Sales' principles of spiritual direction, St. Augustine's thoughts on freedom of the will and addiction (all kinds), and an unforgettable anonymous essay on the evils of pornography. The rest of the book contains invaluable information not found in other books: norms for seminary admissions, the Courage and Encourage support groups and the 12 Steps, spiritual direction for people with SSA, other organizations helping people manage or overcome SSA (with programs in support of different goals, from chastity to reorientation/reparative therapy), and the dissenting Catholic organizations (yes, there are such organizations, and they call themselves Catholic!).

This book is probably the closest we have right now on how God sees same-sex attraction.

(The Philippine edition of this book, published by the Columbans through Fr. Dave Clay, is dedicated to Joe Garcia, the first Filipino director of Courage Philippines.)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Courage on Life On The Rock

Did you miss Fr. Paul Check on EWTN's Life on the Rock? If yes, then here's your chance to get to know the Courage Apostolate from Fr. Paul Check himself who is the current executive director of Courage International. They also have a "special guest" on the show who is an active member of Courage in the US via phone patch. Listen to his life testimony and journey. Courage is an apostolate of the Catholic Church for people struggling with same-sex attraction. You can also visit Courage's new website at

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Weekly News (First Week of March 2011)

1. Pope Tells PHL Bishops: Take Care of Your Clergy

MANILA, March 4, 2011—Pope Benedict urged the Philippine bishops to put a premium in the ongoing formation of priests and to guide them to spiritual maturity. [Read More]

2. Canadian Bishops Challenge Youth to Live Chastity

Encourage Counter-Cultural Following of Christ

OTTAWA, Ontario, MARCH 3, 2011 ( The Canadian bishops are challenging young people to live their sexuality joyfully by living it truthfully, as God intended, by the exercise of chastity. [Read More]

3. Impatience a Hallmark of Homosexual Activists

Opponents of California's Proposition 8 -- radical homosexual activists and their supporters -- obviously aren't content to let the traditionally long judicial process play out. [Read More]

4. Virginity Making a Comeback, Report Says

— Curious what people are up to when it comes to sex?

For some of us, not much, according to a new report issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics which painstakingly details the country’s sexual habits. [Read More]

5. Catholic Leaders Urge Gays to 'Come Out'

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) says gay people risk destroying their lives if they keep their sexuality secret and don’t seek help. [Read More]

6. Texas House Passes Bill for Ultrasound Before Abortion

After Democrats used parliamentary stalling tactics and filed a slew of amendments designed to weaken the bill, the state House late Thursday approved a bill helping women see an ultrasound of their baby before considering an abortion. [Read More]

7. Former Abortionist Now Head of One of the Largest Pro-Life Medical Practices In the U.S.

FAIRFAX, Virginia, March 3, 2011 ( - This week the pro-life community celebrated the life of the great Dr. Bernard Nathanson, famed for his dramatic conversion from a leading abortionist to a stalwart and outspoken advocate for children in the womb.

Dr. Nathanson’s passing reminds us of the powerful testimony of the dozens of doctors who have left the squalor of their abortion facilities and committed themselves to life-giving and authentic health care. [Read More]

8. Liturgy’s Effect on Gay 'Marriage' Debate

Perhaps you’ve visited the popular weblog of the inimitable Fr. Z (AKA Fr. John Zuhlsdorf at where one of his trademark battle cries is, “Save the liturgy, save the world!” If you haven’t, I highly recommend it. [Read More]

9. ‘Gay’ Atheist Warns of ‘Tyrannous New Liberal Morality’ Oppressing Christians

LONDON, March 4, 2011 ( - Last week’s ruling of the High Court in London banning pro-family Christian couples from fostering children has even self-described “gay” atheists concerned. The justices ruled that it was appropriate to ban a Christian couple from fostering children since they refused to present homosexual sex as positive. [Read More]

10. Bad Mass = Weak Faith

ROME (CNS) — A weakening of faith in God, a rise in selfishness and a drop in the number of people going to Mass in many parts of the world can be traced to Masses that are not reverent and don’t follow Church rules, said two Vatican officials and a consultant. [Read More]

Friday, March 4, 2011

Extra Rice: Energy for Men

I just want to promote this book I bought for only P150 inclusive of a black bag from a brother in the community entitled Extra Rice: Energy For Men. You will definitely be inspired by the sharings and reflections in this book. This is available through Ang Lingkod ng Panginoon. (See contact info below)

About the Book

In Extra Rice: Energy for Men - you'll have the opportunity to read and ponder on the reflections of men who have faced challenges that made a difference in their lives. These ordinary lives used by God may challenge you to look at life in another perspective - the perspective of God. These men are ordinary people who are striving to live extraordinary lives for God. Our prayer is that through this book of reflections you, the reader, may be challenged to go beyond mediocrity and to strive, like the men in these pages, for the excellence of a life lived for the glory of God and the service of His people.

About Lingkod

Ang Lingkod ng Panginoon is a Catholic movement of single professionals and working people dedicated to winning other singles to a full commitment to Jesus Christ and to committed personal relationships with other Christians. Along with this mission, the members strive to live a lifestyle reflective of Christian values, particularly in the workplace. They seek fullness of life in Christ and, in living this life, work towards social transformation.

You may contact us at:

Ang Lingkod ng Panginoon
30 Scout Tuason corner Dr. Lazcano Streets,
Room 203 JGS Building, Brgy. Laging Handa
Quezon City 1103 Philippines

Telefax no.: (632) 373-9870
Telephone no.: (632) 376-2709

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Real Love Revolution

The real love revolution has begun last Sunday. As I expected, Jason Evert delivered a powerful and energetic talk to a crowd of mostly young people at SMX Convention Center. I and some Courage brothers and sisters were there to listen to his talk and I was so amazed with this guy! For close to two hours he delivered the talk spontaneously and nonstop covering issues affecting young people today like chastity, dating, courtship, modesty, marriage, pornography, family life, STDs, and yes even the RH bill! We need more people like him who is young and full of passion because the youth can relate to him well.

You can find out more about Jason Evert by visiting his website at Catch him too on EWTN's Theology of the Body for Teens together with his wife Crystalina and another host. Here are the snapshots I took of the event. Bad thing I was not able to even get close to Jason. (Star cager Chris Tiu's special appearance was a surprise for me too.)

Shrine of Jesus beside SMX Convention Center

Mall of Asia Globe

SM Mall of Asia - the third largest shopping mall in Asia

SMX Convention Center is the largest private venue in the Philippines for trade events, industry conventions, corporate functions, and international exhibitions.

(That's Jason Evert projected on the screen)