This sounds like a great book to read since I’m a real New Yorker, born in Manhattan, raised in Astoria, ordained in the Diocese of Brooklyn! There’s only one problem with this book; it left my personal story out! :-)

Deacon John Giglio

The First Review of “New York Catholics”!

coverThe following review of my new book, New York Catholics, appears this week in The Tablet, the official newspaper of the Diocese of Brooklyn. It’s in the editorial column by Editor Ed Wilkinson:

Click here to read the review:

Francis: The devil is no myth, he exists and we must fight against him – Vatican Insider.

The Pope warns Christians to beware of the devil


(©Ansa) The Pope warns Christians to beware of the devil

At today’s Mass in St. Martha’s House Francis spoke about the battle waged against Satan: “He doesn’t throw flowers at us but burning arrows”; Christian life is a continuous and beautiful battle against temptation and truth is the best weapon

Domenico Agasso jr

In today’s homily for the Mass in St. Martha’s House Francis asked Christians again to steer clear of evil and underlined that Christian life is a battle that is fought daily. The Pope’s reflections were based on the words of St Paul in his letter to the Ephesians.


“In this generation, like so many others, people have been led to believe that the devil is a myth, a figure, an idea, the idea of evil. But the devil exists and we must fight against him,” the Pope said.


But we’re not all convinced of this,” Francis said, urging Christians to wear “God’s armour, the truth” 


Life is a military endeavour.  Christian life is a battle, a beautiful battle, because when God emerges victorious in every step of our life, this gives us joy, a great happiness: the joy that the Lord is the victor within us, with his free gift of salvation.  But we’re all a bit lazy, aren’t we, in this battle and we allow ourselves to get carried away by our passions, by various temptations. That’s because we’re sinners, all of us!  But don’t get discouraged.  Have courage and strength because the Lord is with us. 


Christians life is a “continous battle” against temptation, the devil, the world and the passions of the flesh. The devil exists and he must be defeated: “Paul tells us this, it’s not me saying it!” “A Christian life, he said, has to be defended and it requires both strength and courage” to “resist and proclaim”. To advance one’s spiritual life, one has to fight. It’s a continuous battle against the three main enemies of Christian life which are the devil, the world and the passions of the flesh. These are the wounds caused by original sin.”


Of course, the Pope observed, the gift of salvation the Lord gives us is free, but we are called to defend it. “From whom do I have to defend myself? What must I do?  Pauls tells us to put on God’s full armour, meaning that God acts as a defence, helping us to resist Satan’s temptations.  Is this clear?  No spiritual life, no Christian life is possible without resisting temptations, without  putting on God’s armour which gives us strength and protects us.”


We need faith as a shield because the devil “doesn’t throw flowers at us but instead burning arrows” that aim to kill. Francis urged Christians to take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God” and invited them to pray constantly.

The Secret of the Poor Souls in Purgatory.

An interview with Maria Simma of Austria

Maria Simma (1915-2004)

Today, very little is taught in regular catechism classes about Purgatory, about the suffering that the Poor Souls experience in order to be completely purified to be able to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. Yet Purgatory does exist, and the sufferings that the Poor Souls experience there are very real.

Since 1940 (she was then aged 25), a privileged soul, named Maria Simma, has had regular visits from the souls in Purgatory to explain their sufferings and to ask for prayers and Masses to be released from Purgatory. Her local Bishop and parish priest told her she could make known these visitations as long as there were no theological errors.

One day, Sister Emmanuel Maillard, a French nun known for her apostolate in favor of the Apparitions of Our Lady in Medjugorje, came across Maria Simma’s book, called The Souls in Purgatory told Me… and read it with great interest: “This book struck me so much because it related very recent testimonies, and also explained very well the Church’s doctrine on the subject… Straight away, I wrote to the editor who told me that Maria Simma is still alive. Quickly, I contacted her, and she agreed to meet me to answer my questions, which were many!”

This interview took place in 1997 at Maria’s house in Sonntag, a very lovely village in the Vorarlberg Mountains in Austria. The following are excerpts from this interview of Sister Emmanuel of Medjugorje with Maria Simma, taken from a booklet entitled: The Amazing Secret of the Souls in Purgatory, published by Queenship Publishing Co., P.O. Box 220, Goleta, CA 93116, USA (Phone 800-647-9882, Fax: 805-967-5843):

(Note: Maria Simma died on March 16, 2004, in Sonntag, at the age of 89.)

Sr. Emmanuel with Maria Simma

Read the interview here:


Five reasons to trust the Gospels | Christian News on Christian Today.

This is a good article on the Holy Gospels. For the record, I truly believe all that the Evangelists wrote about Jesus’ Birth, Life, Death, and Resurrection as told to us in the Bible!  

The four Gospels of the Bible provide the foundation of Christian belief. The books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John record the life of Jesus while on Earth: the famous nativity and crucifixion stories, and also what Jesus taught and how he behaved.

Orthodox Christians treat the Gospels as historical books: they are recording what actually happened – miracles, healings, resurrection and all. But some centuries ago this belief started to be questioned. Now, it’s commonly believed outside (and sometimes inside) the church, that modern investigation has shown the Gospels to be unreliable, or fundamentally altered, or made up many decades after the events.

Read more here:

ALL SOULS’ DAY – Holy Innocents Church, NYC

On November 3rd, 2014, the Church of the Holy Innocents in midtown Manhattan (NYC) will be observing the Commemoration of All Souls’ Day with a traditional Solemn Mass at 6pm.

The Choir will sing Critobal Morales’ Missa pro defunctis for 5 voices.

Fr. Carlos Viego will be the Celebrant of the Mass.

Tapers will be distributed to be held at the Gospel, during the Canon, and for the Rite of Absolution.



RESPECT for the dead is not an exclusively Christian sentiment … But it is Christianity that has strengthened, transformed and elevated these deep-seated sentiments of our common nature. They are no longer vague and uncertain; they are sustained and sanctioned by revealed truth and, in particular, they rest upon the central dogma of our faith, the resurrection of the dead. The dead body will come to life again. Nay, it is not dead, but sleepeth. It is only buried—typically, no less than really, laid in a narrow “cell,” in a place of “rest,” “in a hostelry,” to await the angel’s trumpet call at the end of time.


Catholic teaching regarding prayers for the dead is bound up inseparably with the doctrine of Purgatory and the more general doctrine of the Communion of the Caints, which is an article of the Apostle’s Creed. The Council of Trent (Sess. XXV) defined, “purgatory exists, and the souls detained therein are helped by the suffrages of the faithful, but especially by the acceptable sacrifice of the altar.


Before the death of Christ, to die was seemingly to fall into nothingness, or, at least, to lose the body for ever, the spirit to grope its way through shadows of the unknown. Christ expelled those shadows with His light, and because good Christians now belong to Christ, not to the devil, they are Christ’s to live and to die with Him; and therefore, death opens up to them on their departure from this life prospects of unalloyed happiness


Re-posted From


Posted: October 30, 2014 in Uncategorized

Now as they went on their way, he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at the Lord’s feet, and heard his word. But Martha was cumbered about much serving; and she came up to him, and said, “Lord, dost thou not care that my sister did leave me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.” But the Lord answered and said unto her, “Martha, Martha, thou art anxious and troubled about many things: but one thing is needful: for Mary hath chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42)

WORKS OF MERCY: We cannot, as Martha did, minister to the wants of our Lord Himself, but we can and ought to minister to Him in the person of His brethren, the poor and the sick; for whatever we do for these we do for Him.

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]

(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)



Here’s a beautiful, inspiring story of conversion and how Our Lady works in each soul! I also call Mother Mary “My Teacher!” By wearing the Brown Scapular, consecrating myself to her Immaculate Heart daily, praying the Rosary, and receiving Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, Our Lady has kept my Faith orthodox and strong.

Originally posted on Faith in our Families:

Victoria Seed

By Victoria Seed…

I have taught RCIA preparation (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) for fifteen years, in five different parishes in three different countries, and I can tell you, hand on heart, that there is no such thing as a “typical convert”. God calls all to know Him, after all, and so people from every background and walk of life seek Him in the sacraments of the Church. Everyone has a story about why he is there. Some are persuaded by years of research or a philosophical argument; some have a health of a spouse, friend or relative; some are blithely tepid for years until they have a Damascene moment, an experience of being directly and forcefully spoken to by God. But I will always remember Ling Wei because I have never heard a story similar to hers. Ling Wei wanted to be a Catholic because as a child she had seen a picture of Mary.


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