A Call to Conversion
I have been blessed with being able to, for my first time, host Catholic Carnival 192 during turbulent times in our country, while the40 Days for Life event takes place from coast to coast, and the Year of St. Paul.
It seems as if "A Call to Conversion" on most events that surround our world today can no longer be ignored.
According to http://www.newadvent.org/ , conversion refers to a moral change, a turning or returning to God and to the true religion.
I feel one of the greatest conversions was of St. Paul.
After Jesus' Ascension, Paul wrote in Acts 8:3 that he "was trying to destroy the Church; entering house after house and dragging out men and women, he handed them over for imprisonment." If God can convert Paul, then I see much hope in our country and in our world for conversion on all matters of moral and political issues.
Catholic Writer discusses conversion experiences. He makes an excellent point that the conversion experience is for us to grow in our relationship with God, not so much to grow in our knowledge of the channel we had our conversion experience.
This is an enriching article that I am sure many of you will walk away from yearning to be closer to Our Lord.
Catholic Matriarch in my Domestic Church aka Catholic Mom writes about Fr. Thomas Reese, SJ and how he tries to suggest that it is enough to reduce the number of abortions without making abortion illegal. Catholic Mom points out how he is horribly mistaken. To keep abortion legal means to deny the unborn human person the dignity to which he is entitled.He remains vulnerable to those who are more powerful. Once we decide one class of persons is disposable we are all at risk.
Her article definitely shows that even among our clergy there is a need for a conversion and how our society as a whole needs a conversion of heart when it comes to abortion.
Catholic Mom's article reinforces to the me the importance of the 40 Days of Life event taking place as I write. Please pray for the efforts of 40 Days of Life as all the volunteers try to have a conversion with those seeking abortion or performing abortion. Dave Bereit writes in his daily email:
"Please pray for these precious turnarounds," John Anthony asked, "and for the conversion of all clinic workers and for Eduardo (star of the movie Bella who showed up in Los Angeles at Famiy Planning to help with a peaceful vigil) -- what a courageous witness and backer of courageous words with action!"
To further reach out for conversions in regards to abortions, Christine at A Catholic View writes, "What's Up with You Tube?" You Tube is blocking pro-life videos that expose Sen. Barrack Obama's extremist support for abortion, videos exposing Planned Parenthood's support for Race-Selective Abortions, and Eduardo Verastegui's denouncing of Obama on abortion. However, they were all but fine with the 40 videos of desecration of the Eucharist.
Please read Christine's article and the pray for the conversion of those at You Tube who find that it is okay to block pro-life videos such as the ones mentioned above, but not okay to block the videos desecrating Our Lord in the Eucharist.
As we continue down the road to conversion, Catholic Land writer Seth discusses Bishop Scranton's pastoral letter on the obligation of Catholics to defend the Right to Life.
Bishop Scranton emphasizes that, "Being 'right' on taxes, education, health care, immigration, and the economy fails to make up for the error of disregarding the value of a human life.
Again, a call of conversion is needed for Catholics who do not support the right to life and find other issues more important than life.
Kevin at Exceptional Marriages reflects on the Mass Readings from 9/28. He points out that Our Lord tells us that if one turns from sin to holiness they will be rewarded with the perfect life that is heaven. Conversion is very much a part of turning from sin and keeping our eyes on the Lord. Please read the reflections on last weeks Mass and apply the readings to your own life and your own conversion to grow closer to Our Lord.
To further speak on conversion, Sister Spitfire on her blog Catholic Spitfire Grill speaks on their faith with Jesus Christ and how this is her Catholic identity. She tries to explain the Catholic Mass to those who state that she was being denied a personal relationship with Jesus through her Catholic faith. She reminds us that as Catholics we "find Jesus everywhere we look." Please share her article with your non-Catholic friends who may be tinkering with their own conversion to the Catholic Faith.
Dave at Catholic Journeyman discusses the Fear of God. He discusses Filial Fear, fear of hurting and offending the God who loves us. I also take this quote directing from his article:
I have run into a few Protestants who fully recognise Filial fear, and live it out...the a-C is one of them. He/they have a well formed Conscience and practice their truth which is, in my experience, compatible Universal truth. They are far more Catholic than they would ever admit ...and I quietly smile when I notice this and think "maybe someday they will come home".
May we pray for those who are far more Catholic than they would ever admit that they have a conversion of heart and find the Lord leading them home to the Catholic Church.
We also need to pray for conversion when it comes time for Catholics to Vote during the Presidential Election. Musings from a Catholic Bookstore discusses the Importance of Voting Catholic. It brings up the question of if not voting for one candidate means voting for the other choice. Susie writes about the book Render to Caesar by Archbishop Charles Chaput. Chaput states that it is "absurd to separate our Catholic beliefs with how we vote politically," and, "we can't compromise our beliefs just to fit in with a majority or to soften Christ's message to make it more palatable." His words that Susie brings to us through her blog call for us to come to a conversion of heart if we are not voting by what we believe to be true as Catholics. Susie also shares the link for information on voting Catholic at http://www.catholicvote.com/. I hope you will take the time to check out her article and the Catholic Vote site.
Discussing the Catholic Vote and pro-life issues, Paul writes about The Civic Sin of Omission (or, why any vote not for McCain is Pro-Abortion) at Dying Lying. He quotes Jason Jones who says,“When you live in a constitutional democracy, your civic duty becomes your religious duty." He is so true with the statement that the cause for abortion is one of the ultimate issues of good versus evil in our time. Reading his blog will make you realize that not voting or not voting for a pro-life candidate is a sin of omission.
Patrick at The Paragraph Farmer writes a piece to make clarifications On Praying Protection for Sarah Palin
The Associated Press does not know what to make of a prayer for protection from witchcraft and has tried to make a pastor from Kenya sound like a superstitious bumpkin for blessing Sarah Palin that way, but I see the blessing in a more charitable light common to Catholics and other Christians.
I agree with Patrick that this was a charitable thing to do for Sarah. I just don't think the media recognizes charity when they see it happen.
So far, we have covered the voting issues and pro-life issues and mentioned St. Paul's conversion and praying for the conversion of others. Let us touch on the conversion of Americans who rely on credit to live day-to-day and the financial problems within our country.
David at the Apostolate of Laity writes a wonderful article on the current financial crisis in this country. He writes of secular materialism and greed. He reminds us that Christ did not die a rich man and that even His tomb was borrowed. He also discusses where the true housing crisis takes place and you will be surprised learn that despite what the media makes you think, it is not here in the United States. I take from his article this information:
For if one has Christ in his heart, then all the financial turmoil in the world matters little, and he has found not a temporary bubble, but rather an ocean of hope and peace.
Those words are what we need to hold close to us and pray for a conversion for those who do not see that these words mean so much.
Conversion can only happen with the use of prayer.
The psalms give us a way to voice the anguishes we have not experienced, the joys that might have never been ours, the fears that besiege and beset those around us. They force us to widen our hearts, and like Christ with Martha and Mary, be willing to go beyond acknowledging another’s pain, and imagine it. The psalms let us weep with each other.
Michelle from Quantum Theology brings us to the psalms where we can find comfort amongst our fears and anguishes. These fears could be due to the loss of a loved one or a loss by a friend (as Michelle as experienced) or the fear of conversion of yourself or others, especially those Catholics who are not in line with the true Catholic Vote.
We can also turn to the Saints for intercession as well. Diana writes about St. Vincent DePaul on her blog 7th Generation Texas. St. Vincent DePaul tells us to ". . . trust in Him, I beg you, and you will have fulfillment of what your heart desires." This quote can be applied to the conversion of heart. Diana also tells her readers that prayer is made of ACTS: Adoration, Contrition, Supplication, and Thanksgiving. Thank you for submitting your excellent post Diana. Diana is a first time carnival entry and I want to let her know how welcome she is.
Could you guess what another form of prayer for conversion could be? Yes, the rosary! To find out more about the history of the rosary, please read Deanna's article on The Rosary at
Snoring Scholar Sarah writes a book review on Rediscovering Catholicism: Journeying Toward Our Spiritual North Star. She admitts she thought it might be just another "Catholic" book, but once into it she discovers it is a treasure chest of information with "down-to-earth" explanations that you can understand. Sara writes:
He talks of witnessing and salvation with an enthusiasm that’s hard not to catch. This book burns with a fire that comes straight from the Holy Spirit, and the practical advice Kelly gives is perfect for us normal folk. He writes it as a real person, not as someone who assumes that their canonization will take place five minutes after their death.
Sara's book review show that even we practicing Catholics need a form of conversion at times and this books seems to enrich the heart with the, as Sara puts it, fire needed for a conversion for a closer relationship with our Lord!
Brian at Christus Vincit writes about the restoration of a Hammond organ whose church is dedicated to the patroness of sacred music. He writes on to give history or this beautiful instrument and even this quote by Mozart:
Mozart proclaimed the pipe organ the “King of Instruments.” For centuries it has been the chosen means of musical support and inspiration for the church. It is the largest of all musical instruments and can speak with a whisper or a roar. The organ alone can produce both the highest and lowest pitches perceptible by the human ear.
This article reminds me that music is also a form of prayer. Hasn't it been said that singing (with the use of the organ) is praying twice. Yes, we can even use music to motivate conversion as well!!
Prepare for Mass (the greatest form of prayer) the blog of Bob's whose entry for this Catholic Carnival 192 is about the parable of the wicked tenants. This parable seems to reflect so much that goes on in our society today. Bob states, "It is by living in Christ, the cornerstone, that we find the peace of God guarding our hearts and minds." With conversion, we can have Christ as our corner stone.
This brings us to the end of this edition of the Catholic Carnival. I thank you for letting me hostess for this 192nd Carnival. It has been a pleasure and a blessing to read each of the articles that were submitted. I have grown in knowledge and in amazement of my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ who have so much so share and teach.
Feel free to submit you own articles for the next or any future Catholic Carnivals. You can do so by clicking here.
God Bless each of you that submitted to this Carnival and all of you who take the time to read these submissions.
Blessed Be God Forever!
Yours in Christ,