December 2016

Fun watching all the young people interact and learn along the way. Everyone’s having a blast! Today we had Mass at beatitudes (homily here), priests gave their vocation stories on the buses, Caesarea Philippi where Jesus appointed Peter as the rock and gave him the keys.

Also we stopped along the Syrian border and looked over where ISIS and their buddies are killing Christians, ate Druze bread sandwiches in the Golan Heights and visited some of the places were Jesus did his miracles along the shore of Galilee. Happy New Year from Israel ??

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Founding Father John Adams Visits a Catholic Church

by Steve Ray on December 31, 2016

544px-AdamstrumbullJohn Adams (1735-1826) was a Founding Father of the United States. He was raised in an austere Protestant movement called the Puritans who left England to flee liturgical Christianity and to find religious freedom. He was raised as a Congregationalist and later turned to Unitarianism. He was elected President of the United States in 1796.

Screen Shot 2011-10-06 at 5.54.51 PMFrom Wikipedia we read, “Adams criticized the claims to universal authority made by the Roman Catholic Church. In 1796, Adams denounced political opponent Thomas Paine’s criticisms of Christianity in his book The Age of Reason, saying, “The Christian religion is, above all the religions that ever prevailed or existed in ancient or modern times, the religion of wisdom, virtue, equity and humanity, let the Blackguard Paine say what he will.”

My older brother sent me the page (84) on the left from a biography of Adams entitled John Adams by David McCullough. I thought it was insightful. Click on the image of the page to read the comments.

I responded to my brother:
Thanks for sharing this with me. I quite feel like this too at Mass, especially in some of the old beautiful churches, like the majestic churches in Detroit and in Europe. And, I still tear up frequently during the splendor of the Mass.

His explanation shows he picked up on much of what is known to most Catholics. I sense this awe at Mass and can relate to Adams’ observations — having lived deeply now in both worlds, plain and chatty Protestantism and mysterious and heavenly Catholicism.

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What an amazing day with our families as we celebrated the Feast of the Holy Family at the House of the Holy Family in Nazareth with our FAMILY Holy Land Pilgrimage!!

We also renewed our wedding vows in Cana and prayed Mass at the top of the Mount of Transfiguration. Enjoy Fr. Matt’s Homily and the rest of our adventures.  We also joined some Jewish friends in lighting the menorah candles for Hanukkah.

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FAMILY Holy Land Pilgrimage off to a GREAT Start with Lots of Kids and Young People

December 29, 2016

Steve Ray here. I conceived of the idea of a Family Holy Land Pilgrimage a few years ago when I saw how many young people were leaving the faith as soon as they got into college. I remember how my four children were fundamentally changed by their early trips to Israel with us. I though, […]

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Who Speaks for God on Morals? Many Choose their Church Like they Choose a Restaurant

December 29, 2016

We have a “church” near our house that is making it comfortable for anyone to join no matter who they are, what they believe or what they practice. They say it is our job to accept and love, to be nice, not to judge. Celebrate Diversity is a slogan of acceptance, multiculturalism, non-judgmental inclusion. Some […]

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Dealing with Cancer: Amy Carrico’s Story

December 28, 2016

This is a heart-wrenching, yet beautiful story of a wife and mom with cancer and how she’s decided to deal with it. She’s a inspiration to us all – living in the heart of her family, God and the Church. For other beautifully crafted Catholic and personal videos by Fr. Josh and Lolek Productions, click […]

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Denzinger Timeline of the Controversy over Communion for the Divorced and ‘Remarried’ in Adultery and Pope Francis

December 27, 2016

This is an amazing resource compiled by Andrew Guernsey. It provides all the source material on the subject of Communion for Divorced and civilly “remarried.” It starts with the Old Testament and then the New Testament before moving historically through the Fathers, Popes, Councils and more. A thorough resource for all the source documents upon […]

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Short Story of the Ray Family Conversion with Pictures

December 27, 2016

A while ago I decided to write a brief story of our conversion story. It is easy to read in about 15 minutes, about our coming into the Catholic Church. Janet and I converted to the Catholic Church in 1994 but it still seems like yesterday. It has not grown old and we are still thrilled […]

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Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu Addresses Christians on Christmas

December 26, 2016

Janet and I are currently on our way to Israel to pick up our group of 100 passengers. This is a Family Holy Land Pilgrimage and we have a LOT of children on the trip. We want to impress them with the Truth of Christianity so that as they grow up they will never lose […]

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Evangelism Antennas: A Fun Story of One Woman’s Day and the New Evangelism :-)

December 26, 2016

A while ago I gave a talk in Ann Arbor Michigan. It was about the New Evangelization. As part of my talk I explained how Janet and I have our “evangelism antennas” up first thing in the morning – alertly watching for open doors and ways to share our Catholic Faith throughout the day. And […]

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We Had a Nice Christmas Present Today :-)

December 25, 2016

Nice Christmas present today. Plane to Israel oversold so they bumped us to Business Class. Nice sleep ahead! Thank the Lord! It pays to stay Diamond!

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Thanks to Assad and Putin…

December 25, 2016

Are you against Syrian President Bashar Assad like Obama and Hilary are? Thanks to Putin/Assad Catholics in Aleppo have Christmas Mass 1st time in 5 years! Assad has always supported and protected the Christians. How can our country get it so wrong? Read more HERE.

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Questions I Answered on Catholic Answers Live about Mary, Joseph, Jesus & Christmas

December 22, 2016

To listen to the show on-line click here. For other listening options like podcasts, click here. These are the questions I answered tonight about Christmas, Bethlehem, the birth of Jesus, Joseph & Mary, the gospel accounts and more. *************************************************** 1. Tell us about the four Gospels and why they tell different stories. 2. How does […]

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Was Jesus Really Born at THAT Place in Bethlehem?

December 21, 2016

In a few days we are leaving for Bethlehem. We will have Mass next week at a lot of holy sites with our group of Catholic families. To the left is a picture of Gethsemane on the western slope of the Mount of Olives. How do we know this is really Gethsemane? In a few days […]

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Lots of Radio Shows this Week! All About the REAL Mary, Jesus and Christmas

December 19, 2016

I don’t know that I have ever had a week so full of radio shows across the country. What fun. A few were pre-recorded and the others live. Here is the list. All times are Eastern: For my fun-filled documentary movie Mary, Mother of God see below. Monday 9:40 AM: Teresa Tomeo Show on EWTN, […]

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What Christmas Carol is This?

December 19, 2016

ABCDEFGHIJKMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ It is a clever riddle, but see if you can figure it out. Don’t read the comments below unless you give up.

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