Music and its affect on spirituality
Part I of III
It’s that time of the day when you know you should go to the gym. But after a long day at work, you really don’t feel like it. But still, you know going would be good for you. So you slip on the head phones, and put on “Till I Collapse” by Eminem to help get you off the couch, into the gym and motivated to work out, despite your tiredness. This is a pretty common experience, especially for the youth. If anything can be concluded from this observation, it’s that music, specifically the melody, can affect our emotions and moods including the intensity of each. What is it about that Eminem song that pumps us up, or any song that we classify as “motivational music”? Just open Pandora and add the “Workout Radio” and I will guarantee that Mozart or Beethoven will not play on that station. That is because classical music does not give us that “pumped up” feeling. Clearly then, different melodies cause different emotions to be felt. There is nothing inherently wrong with this. Music is an art that can express all sorts of realities in life, including the type of things we go through personally. Included in this, is worship of God. The most important action that helps fulfill our human nature is worship of God. And certain melodies can help play a role in directing our mind and soul to God during this act. At the same time however, other melodies can do the opposite by deceiving us with sentimentality and intense feelings of pleasure as a form of worship.
On the Sacrament of the Eucharist - Part 2
Article by Shamasha Tarik Attar
The Thanksgiving offering (the Eucharist) is not just a remembrance of the past, but it is a live celebration of the reality of the presence of Christ among his faithful. He is present and He is ‘The Present’, He is here now, and forever until the end of time continuing to renew us to Himself. He is alive in its substance and dwells in the golden tabernacle and the tabernacle of our hearts. Just as the Israelites carried the tabernacle on their shoulders and housed it in the temple so we also have the Eucharist in the temple and we carry it with us to conquer the world.
Christ on the Cross of Calvary 2000 years ago and Christ on the altar of our Church today are the same person. The Christ we meet today in the Mass is the Christ of history, for he is “Jesus Christ; the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). Christ is not divided by time. Christ is also not divided by space or limited by matter. “Christ is present whole and entire in each of the species [consecrated bread and wine] and whole and entire in each of their parts, in such a way that the breaking of the bread does not divide Christ” 207 (CCC 1377).
On the Sacrament of the Eucharist - Part 1
Article by Shamasha Tarik Attar
The sacraments are the treasury of the church; they are the gifts of the Groom to his bride. However the crown of all sacraments is the Eucharist. The whole point of this sacrament is to participate in the life of God and to become a tabernacle for God to process him out to the world. The Eucharist is the center of the catholic faith because of its life giving, and sanctifying graces.
But why does God constitute something that is extremely difficult to accept? God created the universe so that we could exist and enjoy his love forever. To this end, he revealed himself to the whole world through a “Chosen People,” established a covenant of love with them. He continues to reveal Himself (although veiled under bread and wine) through His beloved bride the Church particularly through her priests. It is through the church that we have an opportunity to be united with Him. So, God creates the universe to house the Church and the church is established to House the Eucharist (Himself) to be present among His new adopted sons and daughters. God wants us to have the eyes of faith, therefor he remains hidden from the eyes of the world that refuses to accept him as His own chosen people refused to accept Him and condemned Him because their blindness and deafness as the prophet Isaiah proclaims.
A documentary about Chaldean Christians pursuing their faith amongst war and persecution
Currently the Islamic State is capturing and harming Christians because of their faith. Great numbers are being forced out of their homeland, which they have inhabited since the time of Christ.
"The War Among Us" is a documentary that explores the relationship between Chaldean Christians and Muslims both in Iraq and here in the United States, including the role that philosophy and theology plays in producing the complicated state of affairs that we find today.
Facing uncertain future, Iraqi refugees sacrifice for education
Erbil, Iraq, (CNA): Less than a mile away from the local coffee shops, fancy restaurants, and the U.S. Consulate in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, some 60,000 displaced Iraqi Christians are taking refuge, tucked away in the mostly Christian neighborhood of Ankawa.
Having fled the violence of the Islamic State, some 150 Christian families have begun to settle into their new surroundings, which typically take the form of tents and shipment containers.
Displaced from their hometowns due to ongoing violence in Mosul, Tikrit, and Qaraqosh, they are accepting their temporary new living conditions, while realizing that for the foreseeable future, this is their life.
MOMS Group enjoys a day retreat at the convent
On Tuesday, April 21, 2015, 40 women gathered at the convent of Our Lady of the Fields for a day retreat hosted by the Workers of the Vineyard. The retreat was based on the last chapter of St. John's Gospel and focused on the interaction between Jesus and the disciples. The women gathered at the convent at 8:30am and started the day off with morning prayer followed by Communion service. After enjoying a small breakfast, the retreat began and lasted until 2pm. The speakers included Sister Tarbytha Mariam, along with the newly ordained Fr. Ankido Sipo and Fr. Simon Esshaki. Confession was also available throughtout the retreat thanks to the visiting priests. Though the retreat was only a few hours, the women were able to draw closer to Christ through the different talks and activities planned for the day.
Reflection on the Basilica Hymn for the Third Sunday of the Resurrection
Article by Fr. Andrew Younan
For more reflections on the Basilica Hymns of each season, purchase Perpetual Jubilee: Meditations on the Chaldean Liturgical Year on Amazon.com.
The “bare fact” of the rising of Christ and the evidence that supports it such as the empty tomb was stated and reflected upon by means of this hymn three weeks ago on Easter Sunday, as the second section of the Basilica Hymn for that greatest Feast of the year. The same hymn is repeated here, presented for our reflection a second time. A similar thing happened during Lent, when the same hymn was used during the first and last week, and we saw that the purpose there was to allow us to look at the same words with different, changed eyes, with eyes that had endured the battle and look back to its beginning matured and tempered from the fight.
The Priestly Ordination of Fr. Ankido Sipo and Fr. Simon Esshaki Friday, April 10th, 2015
On behalf of our Parish Priests and Parish communities of Northern California Vicariate, I extend with prayers, most heartfelt sentiments to our beloved H.E. Bishop Mar Sarhad Yawsip Jammo, for the first fruits of St. Peter Diocese, made manifest in the priestly ordination of Fr. Ankido Sipo and Fr. Simon Esshaki. Your Excellency, may The LORD our GOD Who chose you to shepherd Fr. Ankido and Fr. Simon into a life of sanctity, consecrated in Christ’s Name, confer on you His unfathomable Mercy, so that by His Word and Grace, you continue to feed (us) His Church.