February 2013

Saginaw Pilgrims Arrive in the Holy Land

by Steve Ray on February 28, 2013

(If you leave comments below I’ll read them to your family and friends each day on the buses. Mention who you are writing the comments to :-)

Everything went smooth with arrivals and as we begin our first day. It couldn’t have gone better. All three airlines came in on time and the buses pulled out of the airport right on schedule.

After our ride up to Galilee we had dinner all prepared at our Kibbutz hotel right on the shores of Galilee. Now everyone is heading to bed and some are having a drink or walking down to the sea of Galilee.

This video will give you an idea of how everything went on our first day.

Thanks to Bishop Cistone for bringing his diocese and for trusting us to guide them. This is a grand celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Saginaw Diocese.

By the way, a point of interesting trivia: the Diocese of Saginaw Michigan is 7,000 square miles; all of Israel is only 8,000 square miles!

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Lent has a history and is biblically based. I wrote an article on Lent which was posted on the Verbum (Logos) Bible Study Software webpage. You can read it here.

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Mark 5:18–21 “And as he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with demons begged him that he might be with him. But he refused, and said to him, ‘Go home to your friends, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.’ And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him; and all men marveled. And when Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a great crowd gathered about him; and he was beside the sea.”

(See the interactive map, pictures, videos and story here.)

20130227-202154.jpgI crossed to the other side of the Sea of Galilee where Jesus healed this man and others. The Decapolis was a loose federation of ten Greek cities. I hiked up a steep mountain today to visit the one nearest the site mentioned in the Gospel of Mark– Susita (also called in Greek Hippo).

I’ve been wanting to climb up to Susita for sometime now. Today I had the time and it was a deliciously beautiful day. Hiking up the steep inclines I was again amazed at the ancient people who would build a city on a hill like that and climbing up and downwithout cars or modern roads. These were tough people back then – including Jesus and his disciples.

Susita was one of ten cities in the Greek Decapolis. The progression of possession of this mountaintop fortress started with the Greeks. The Maccabees took over in the 2nd century BC and the Romans shortly thereafter. Christians converted the pagans in the city and it ended up with four churches! The Muslims invaded and the whole thing fell down in an earthquake in the 700′s. Since then it has been ruins.

How amazing to walk the ancient basalt stone streets, to stand in the apse of the churches, to look out over the Sea of Galilee like an eagle sees it and to see the lush flowers and the blue skies. It is too walk back into history.

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Are Popes Bound to Serve for Life? Popes Who Resigned (a new e-book)

February 26, 2013

E-mail I received from St. Benedict Press: “Dear Steve: “As you know, questions regarding the process, history and meaning of papal resignations are of burning interest to Catholics right now. Popular author Thomas Craughwell addresses these questions in Popes Who Resigned, a fascinating new ebook from TAN. Craughwell spans 20 centuries to unveil fourteen unique [...]

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Can You Wager or Bet on the Conclave?

February 26, 2013

New post on “In the Light of the Law“ Betting on the conclave? by Dr. Edward Peters According to the (Old) Catholic Encyclopedia , in his bullum Cogit nos (21 March 1591), Pope Gregory XIV forbade under pain of excommunication all bets concerning the election of a pope, the duration of a pontificate, or the [...]

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Video of My Recent Talk at Franciscan U. in Stuebenville

February 25, 2013

I recently gave my talk “Swimming Upstream: Living and Proclaing the Faith in a Neo-pagan World.” It has been posted free for watching on their website http://www.franciscan.edu/News/2013/Ray-on-Evangelization/

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Pope’s Farewell at Sunday’s Angelus; Changes Conclave’s Rules for Election of New Pope

February 24, 2013

He explains his continuing service to the Church: Dear brothers and sisters, I hear this Word of God addressed to me in a special way during this moment of my life. Thank you! The Lord is calling me to “scale the mountain,” to dedicate myself still more to prayer and to meditation. But this does [...]

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Friday’s Radio Shows with Steve Ray

February 21, 2013

Friday on Relevant Radio with Sean Herriott at 7 AM Eastern – “Feast Day of Chair of St. Peter” especially applicable with the current papal resignation. Friday on Ave Maria Radio with Teresa Tomeo at 9:15 AM Eastern, also discussing the Chair of Peter.

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Check Out the New World Youth Day Facebook Page – Share it with a Young Person

February 21, 2013

World Youth Day Gets Global Facebook Page Communications Director Eager to Make Pope’s Message Accessible RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL, February 21, 2013 (Zenit.org) – Facebook users who access the World Youth Day Rio ’13 page will now benefit from the global setting supplied by that social network. The page is available in 21 profiles, and [...]

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20 Quick Questions & 20 Brief Answers about the Pope’s Resignation …

February 21, 2013

20 Brief Answers to 20 Questions ROME, February 20, 2013 (Zenit.org) – Benedict XVI’s renunciation has raised many questions, and not only in the Catholic world. Some of the questions are of a practical nature, while others regard more far-reaching doubts. Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Vatican press office, has given several press [...]

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Before He Was Pope

February 17, 2013

I just pulled this out of our family archives…our family had the honor of speaking with Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger in the Year of Jubilee.  

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I Just Discovered this Video of our Family’s Meeting with Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict)

February 17, 2013

This brings back fond memories of our morning meeting with Cardinal Ratzinger in Rome after he celebrated Mass at the German College in the Vatican. I was giving him my book and he signed a copy of his book for me. I was telling him that my endorsement was on the back of one of [...]

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The Conclave: What the Pope Can Do, Can’t Do & Won’t Do

February 16, 2013

New post by Dr. Ed Peters: What the pope can do, can’t do, might do, won’t do… Benedict XVI’s startling decision to act under a canonical norm (c. 332 § 2) that has been invoked only twice in its 700+ year lifetime (once in 1296 by Celestine V who wrote the law, and apparently by [...]

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Phil Lawler Reveals the REAL Reason the Pope Resigned

February 15, 2013

And I agree with him. Read his article HERE.

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Frivolous but Hilarious: Dogs in a Diner – Laughter is Good Medicine

February 15, 2013

My wife has tears running down her cheeks and the grandkids are howling with laughter. This video has been viewed by over 16 million people – for a reason. It is clever, well produced and worth watching because laughter is good medicine (even during Lent :-)

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Questions I Answered on Catholic Answers Live on Ash Wednesday

February 14, 2013

We put the fun back in Lent. Patrick and I had a fun time talking about a usually a somber topic. I am convinced Catholicism and the love of God is always exciting and joyful. You can listen to the show on-line or download as an MP3 file. For more info and listening options, click [...]

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