048: How Almsgiving Can Save Your Life…Now and Later

catholic_FINAL_150Fasting? Powerful.

Prayer? Absolutely necessary.

Almsgiving? Can save you from death!

In our last episode, we discovered the revolution that occurred in the Old Testament with regard to handling the consequences of sin. We saw how it evolved from something we had to wait and endure, to something akin to a debt we could “pay down” proactively.

In other words, we discovered you can actually shave time off of purgatory through almsgiving. It was pretty huge.

Now we’re going to take it one step further.

In today’s program we’re going to unpack the incredible meaning behind a simple little verse in Proverbs: “The treasuries of wickedness provide no benefit, but almsgiving delivers from death” (10:2). 

That’s a pretty amazing sentence. And it’s not hyperbole. It’s not exaggeration. It’s the truth…and we’ll see it in Scripture.

In this powerful episode we’ll:peter-raises-tabitha-from-the-dead

  • Discover the little discussed details in the story of the raising of Tabitha from the dead and how they’re all related to almsgiving
  • Understand why almsgiving before all else is a cry for mercy
  • Discuss the rationale for how almsgiving can help not just ourselves, but our beloved deceased
  • Compare the difference between almsgiving and indulgences
  • Get a new perspective on the Our Father and discover why St. Augustine declared that forgiving others is a powerful form of almsgiving

It’s a pretty powerful episode that will reorder the way you think about how to help your beloved deceased, as well as best prepare for your own departure from this world into the eternal bliss of heaven.

God bless!

Matthew

8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life Cover ImageP.S. Don’t just listen to us talk about it. Do it! Grab your FREE copy of my quick guide to deeper prayer 8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life! It’s an easy step-by-step guide to help you rocket to God!

 

 

 

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Want to tour Catholic Europe’s most beautiful holy sites? Join Matthew on a  St. Paul Center pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes, and other amazing holy sites this October 23rd to November 1st. Click here for details.

047: The Secret Back Door Out of Purgatory Nobody Talks About

catholic_FINAL_150If I was to ask you the quickest way out of purgatory, or even perhaps the quickest way into heaven, what would you say? “Be a saint.” Good.

But what should we do when we fall short? What about when we sin?

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The book I mention in the podcast.

“Get to confession,” you reply. Excellent. But then what? Is there a way to make up for what we’ve done? A way to remedy the damage that we’ve caused the Body of Christ now, so that we don’t suffer later?

Absolutely. It’s almsgiving.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to tell you to start giving alms. I’m going to tell you why you’re nuts if you don’t. Trust me. You want to hear this. Because we’re going to:

  • Discuss why you want to spend as little time in purgatory as possible
  • (hint: it hurts…a lot!)
  • Show how Scripture describes sin in terms of a debt to be paid
  • Demonstrate the incredible revolution with regard to payment for sin that occurred in the Old Testament between the time of King David and Daniel
  • Examine Scripture passages that demonstrate the concept of purgatory and its miraculous relationship to almsgiving433px-Carracci-Purgatory
  • Explain how almsgiving can shortcut the consequences of your sinful actions…now and later!

Don’t listen if you enjoy suffering. For the rest of you, push “play” now!

Matthew

8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life Cover ImageP.S. Don’t just listen to us talk about it. Do it! Grab your FREE copy of my quick guide to deeper prayer 8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life! It’s an easy step-by-step guide to help you rocket to God!

Don’t miss a show! Subscribe to The Art of Catholic by clicking this link and then clicking “View in iTunes” under the picture and then “Subscribe”! 

Love the show and want more people to hear the Catholic faith? Leave a review by clicking here and then the “View in iTunes” button under my picture. This pushes the show up the rankings and puts it in front of more people.

Android user? You can listen to The Art of Catholic on the Beyond Pod app from the Google Play Store.

Lourdes BasilicaWant to tour Catholic Europe’s most beautiful holy sites? Join Matthew on a  St. Paul Center pilgrimage to Fatima, Spain, Lourdes, and other amazing holy sites this October 23rd to November 1st. Click here for details.

The Very Best Way To Honor Veterans…

Parades, picnics, and patriotism are all well and good. In the United States, they provide a kind of Memorial Day imgresritual through which we honor those who have served our country. Other countries have similar days of remembrance.

But there’s an even more important way we can honor those who have given their lives to protect our freedoms. This year, instead of just waving a flag and thanking a veteran, think about doing something more. Offer up a Mass.

2 Maccabees 12 provides a scriptural precedent for just such an action.

During his campaign to free the Jews from Greek oppression, Judas Maccabeus returned to the field of battle to retrieve the bodies of some fallen freedom fighters. Unfortunately, he discovered his fallen comrades had committed idolatry and worshipped a false god. (They were carrying “sacred tokens of the idols of Jamnia, which the law forbids the Jews to wear” (2 Mac 12:40).

What did he do? He offered sacrifice for their souls.

Peter paul Rubens, "The Triumph of Judas Maccabee," Museum of Fine Artsin Nantes…and they turned to prayer, beseeching that the sin which had been committed might be wholly blotted out… 43 He also took up a collection, man by man, to the amount of two thousand drachmas of silver, and sent it to Jerusalem to provide for a sin offering. In doing this he acted very well and honorably, taking account of the resurrection. 44 For if he were not expecting that those who had fallen would rise again, it would have been superfluous and foolish to pray for the dead. 45 But if he was looking to the splendid reward that is laid up for those who fall asleep in godliness, it was a holy and pious thought. Therefore he made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin. (2 Mac 12:42-45) (italics mine)

While our departed loved ones were probably not carrying around idols, we recognize that none of them were perfect. They suffered from the effects of sin just like the rest of us. But the great thing is that we can help them!

As Catholics, we are all part and parcel of the Mystical Body of Christ. We’re all connected through the sacraments. Death in a state of grace doesn’t kick someone out of the family. They’ve just moved upstairs, so to speak.

And since we don’t know exactly where they are in the process of perfection, the very best thing we can do isn’t a parade, but an offering of the sacraments for their soul. Our loved ones have sacrificed for us. Now let us offer sacrifice for them (and have a parade!).

Happy Memorial Day and God bless those who fight to protect freedom everywhere.

Matthew
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P.S. Don’t forget to grab your FREE copy of my quick guide to deeper prayer 8 Ways To Jumpstart Your Prayer Life! It’s an easy step-by-step guide to help you rocket to God!

Don’t miss a show! Subscribe to The Art of Catholic podcast by clicking this link and then clicking “View in iTunes” under the picture and then “Subscribe”!

Lourdes BasilicaWant to experience Catholic Europe? Join Matthew on his pilgrimage to Fatima, Lourdes, Avila, and many other amazing holy sites this October 23rd to November 1st. Click here for details.