Sunday, December 23, 2012

Cardinal Fratelli's Christmas Sermon

“Brothers and sisters in Christ, The prophet Isaiah, of old, once said, thousands of years before the birth of Lord Christ:
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, and that preacheth peace: of him that sheweth forth good, that preacheth salvation, that saith to Sion: Thy God shall reign! (1)
On this night, I say to you as we have heard in the Scriptures:
“For a CHILD IS BORN to us, and a son is given to us, and the government is upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called, Wonderful, Counsellor, God the Mighty, the Father of the world to come, the Prince of Peace (2).”
What are we to make of all this? Surely our minds and hearts are dizzied by the news: Our Savior has come! He is given to us. Given! And he shall reign forever! When we see the sadness and brokenness of the world, it becomes obvious that mankind longs for a Savior. We long to be rescued and delivered from evil, the wickedness of others and most importantly, our own wickedness. Don’t deny it, dear children, for soon as we think ourselves perfect, we have fallen.
But do not despair in the pit of sorrow, do not yield to your sin and say “It is hopeless” -good news has been announced to us! We have a Savior and moreso, not a Savior who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who was made like us in all things- but sin. This is wonderful! Do we realize that death and sin have been answered, have been challenged by the cry of a tender babe in Bethlehem?
His cries echo our cries and He will deliver us! I say to you: Open your hearts for Thy God, the Prince of Peace, shall reign!”

Sunday, December 16, 2012

A Cardinal Fratelli Christmas ~

Please consider buying Cardinal Fratelli books for someone special this Christmas. Revolving around the mishaps of a blundering clergyman, they feature a light-hearted look at Christian faith, family and life. They are available on, Nook and Kindle!

^ This is the first volume, it introduces us to the lovable character of Cardinal Fratelli and shows us the little mishaps that occur every day as he lives out his priestly vocation. See how profoundly, a relationship with the Lord effects his life in meaningful- and comical ways!

^ The second volume is all about Cardinal Fratelli’s plans for Christmas. Here, you get to meet his entire family and see their funny quirks. A strong message about the real reason for Christmas is also written into these pages. It is wonderful, endearing and hilarious!


Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Cardinal Fratelli Picture Book

I encourage everyone here to click on this link so that they will be treated to a wonderful experience. This is a project I am working on and will be contributing more to: The Cardinal Fratelli Picture Book.

It features illustrations, done by Rachel M. Gohlman and Denita L. Arnold, of various scenes from the good cardinal's life with beautiful descriptions for each picture. When it is fully completed, it will be posted on this blog. Please click on Cardinal Fratelli's facebook page below to see the work-in-progress and enjoy it!

~ The Cardinal Fratelli Picture Book ~

Monday, December 3, 2012

Tea with Cardinal Fratellli, # 10

From Lucio Fontani,

 “Eminenza, I have been thinking I might want to become a priest someday. What should I do?”

Dear, Lucio Fontani,

 This is wonderful news!! There is no moment more beautiful than when a young man decides to dedicate his life to God!
However, before deciding you might become a priest, ponder whether you enjoy being anonymous, overworked, lonely, misunderstood, ordered around, pushed aside, falsely flattered, and disregarded… and did I mention being overworked? If you find all of these things enjoyable, priesthood may be the correct vocation for you.
And my son, while you do think of these things and try to retain goodly composure and sanity, you will be in my prayers.
 Yours In Christ,
Angelo Cardinal Fratelli

Tea with Cardinal Fratelli, # 9

From: Matthew

 “Umm…Mr. Cardinal, I just graduated high school and am looking for a job. Do you have any suggestions?”

 Dear Matthew,

Yes, show up at the cathedral on Saturday morning and I’ll pay you to whitewash it.
 In Christ,
Angelo Cardinal Fratelli.

Tea with Cardinal Fratelli, # 8

From: Jacqueline,

“All of my friends are married or going to school or doing other things and I am very bored. How should I spend my time now that I am left with so much of it? Help me, Your Eminence, I’m going insane!”

Dear Jacqueline,

Do not despair and do not go insane for neither of these experiences are very pleasant.  Having alot of time on your hands is a gift from God, a time to grow spiritually and mentally, and to meet some goals, such as finally dusting those dirty bookshelves in your office, something which I myself have been putting off for a long time. In addition to growing close to God in prayer, there are plenty, long prayers you can learn- or make them up as you go along like I do, you could pick up a hobby or two. Gardening is very rewarding.
In Christ,
Angelo Cardinal Fratelli

Tea with Cardinal Fratelli, # 7

From:  Adam

 I have a problem getting attention from women and they avoid me alot. I’ve noticed the way in which some women look at you and like to be around you. Can you tell me how to attract them?

Dear, Adam

First, I wish you would tell me how to scare them away!
 In Christ,
Angelo Cardinal Fratelli

Tea with Cardinal Fratelli, # 6

From: Jaques
“Help me Your Eminence… I think I may be addicted to milk!”

Dear Jaques,
If you find yourself reaching from the milk-jug before noon and having to warm up a glass before you fall asleep every night, there may be a problem. Yes, you may desire it with your pasta and think its creamy sweetness with a plate of cookies will solve your problems- but any addiction can be harmful. I know from my childhood that milk can make you fat and goofy. Yes, I am embarrassed to admit I was a rather pudgy youth because of my indulgence in milk… Anyway this is about you-not me.
 In the case you are truly addicted and feel that dairy is taking over your life, cut yourself off from milk and all milk-products and do penance!
In Christ,
Angelo Cardinal Fratelli

Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Sermon on Modesty

Preparing for Mass is a wonderful thing, full of anticipation. I look forward to walking beneath dawn’s pinkish light, feeling the chill morning air and hearing bells announce the beginning of yet another day. However, some things I do not look forward to. There comes a time when the teacher must rebuke, when the shepherd must goad his sheep…better now than too late it seems.
When I arrive, rapt in silent reverence to pray the holy liturgy, I notice some others do not share the same view. Some talk loudly on the steps, waiting till the last minute to come worship, others wander the transept as if having nothing else to do, and yet others arrive at holy Mass dressed more fitly for the taverns!
Holy as I strive to be, I am still a man and not immune to carnal distraction. I will without fail notice when a woman approaches with her shoulders and neck exposed. At times, I feel glad that I face away during the most-holy consecration, that I cannot see bands of pale flesh when my mind should be on hallowed things! Shame on you who consider not clothing your daughters in modesty! And shame too, on you young men who present yourselves with wrinkled cuffs, messed hair, smelling of cigar smoke! It is not my duty to lay your dress out for you but if it were, I would teach a lesson in appropriate reverence!
Elder ladies, I look upon you with dignity and respect. Your hair, greyed with wisdom, is a token for us all. But, some of you too have acted shamefully, gathering before the sanctuary after Mass to chatter and improvise daily plans. Have you no parlor or den to gather in? The sacred place isn’t for gathering but for adoration. You rich, you sneer at the poor who behave crudely then proceed to discuss hunting and cards in front of the altar rail! Go elsewhere with it all!
Oh you florists and craftsmen, I admire your works but please do not sell them here! You eloquent speakers and idealists are dear to my heart but find a more suitable place to reveal your dreams. You gentlemen, who wear long coats, feathered hats and medals, can you cross the threshold before donning this finery?
Thus it is written: “You shall worship God with reverence and godly fear for he is a consuming fire.” Even Moses, the greatest forefather, needed to remove his shoes when approaching hallowed ground.
When you gather, be ever mindful that this place is unearthly, be mindful of the lamp of God’s presence, keep prayerful; stay silent. Sing with the harp of your voices at the entering antiphon, speak solely pure words here and only embrace your neighbor at the sign of peace.
 “We will go into his tabernacle: We will adore in the place where his feet stood.” (Psalm 132:7) Amen.