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Author Archive: Cristina Montes

Cristina Montes, from the Philippines, is a lawyer, writer, amateur astronomer, a gardening enthusiast, a voracious reader, a karate brown belter, an avid traveler, and a lover of birds, fish, rabbits, and horses. She is a die-hard Lord of the Rings fan who reads the entire trilogy once a year. She is the eldest daughter in a large, happy Catholic family.

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Not Alone: At the House of Mary Near Ephesus

November 30, AD 2016 2 Comments
Not Alone: At the House of Mary Near Ephesus

I was a solo traveler in the pilgrimage I joined to the Holy Land and Turkey. Most of the others in the pilgrimage were traveling with their spouses, their friends, or their relatives. Those who were not seemed to have known each other previously. Although everyone else was very nice, fun even, at times I […]

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Inviting Christ and Mary to Your Wedding

November 11, AD 2016 0 Comments
Inviting Christ and Mary to Your Wedding

One of the highlights of a pilgrimage to the Holy Land that I was on recently, was witnessing married couples renew their marriage vows in Cana of Galilee, the site where Jesus turned water into wine during a wedding feast to which He and Mary were invited. A church now stands at the site. It […]

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#PrayForTheWorld

July 24, AD 2016 8 Comments
#PrayForTheWorld

It has become harder and harder to keep track of the places to #prayfor with so much violence occurring all over the world within a short period of time. Most of us realize that posting such hashtags can do only so much for world peace. Just as futile too is the exercise of complaining about […]

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Our Beautiful New Church

June 9, AD 2016 0 Comments
Our Beautiful New Church

Last year, I wrote about how excited I was for the construction of our new parish church. Now, I am very happy that the construction of the church has been finished and the new church is as beautiful as I expected it to be. As I attended Mass for the first time in the finished […]

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Book Review: Saintly Youth of Modern Times by Joan Carroll Cruz

April 14, AD 2016 1 Comment
Book Review:  Saintly Youth of Modern Times by Joan Carroll Cruz

When I was growing up, stories of child- and teenager- saints made me feel uncomfortable. These spiritual prodigies loved the Mass and the Rosary, rarely quarreled with others, and died smiling as they offered up cancer pains for the conversions of sinners. I, on the other hand, preferred listening to music over praying the rosary, […]

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Human Devices as Reminders of God’s Presence

March 17, AD 2016 0 Comments
Human Devices as Reminders of God’s Presence

Part of the battle to live Lent is to not forget that it is Lent. It is especially hard for busy Catholic professionals caught in a daily whirlwind frenzy of work, social life, current events, and family duties. This only means that we busy Catholic professionals must take pro-active strategies to remind ourselves of our […]

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Dante’s The Divine Comedy and the Year of Mercy

January 21, AD 2016 2 Comments
Dante’s The Divine Comedy and the Year of Mercy

Me with Dante’s Statue in Florence All of my friends know how much I rave about Dante’s The Divine Comedy, and how much I have been urging people to read it. This year, I decided to follow my own advice and I have started to re-read the Comedy. The idea came from Pope Francis, who […]

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For Those Hurting At Christmas

December 24, AD 2015 1 Comment
For Those Hurting At Christmas

Everyone has, at one point in life or another, experienced a Christmas which was less merry than others – whether the cause be relationship or family problems, the death of a loved one, poverty, illness, seasonal affective disorder, or any other cause. When this happens, the Christmas air can make one feel worse instead of […]

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Attending Mass While Traveling

November 24, AD 2015 1 Comment
Attending Mass While Traveling

When planning a trip, Catholics must consider when, where, and how to insert Sunday Mass into the itinerary. During these times, the duty imposed by the Third Commandment of God and the First Commandment of the Church may seem inconvenient, but for me, going to Sunday Mass while traveling enhances the travel experience. Seeing the […]

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Just Another “Halloween Debate” Article

October 31, AD 2015 1 Comment
Just Another “Halloween Debate” Article

Photo Credit: http://www.publicdomainpictures.net/view-image.php?image=26899   I never had a clear position on whether Catholics can celebrate Halloween. On the one hand, most Halloween parties I have been to were just good, clean, spooky fun. Furthermore, I have a legitimate reason to celebrate Halloween: I was born on that day. On the other hand, I see merit […]

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Spiritual Retreat: What to Expect and Why Go on One

October 29, AD 2015 1 Comment
Spiritual Retreat: What to Expect and Why Go on One

Perhaps you have heard Catholics mention that they have attended a spiritual retreat at one time or another. Perhaps you have, yourself, been invited to attend one and have hesitated to accept the invitation as you do not know what to expect during spiritual retreats. What, exactly, happens during spiritual retreats? I, personally, aim to […]

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Book Review: Mysteries of Salvation History

October 1, AD 2015 4 Comments
Book Review:  Mysteries of Salvation History

“I have my Bible in my pocket,” said Edgardo C. De Vera, a Filipino apologist, to a group of three Protestants with whom he was discussing. Intrigued, they asked to see it. De Vera then fished out his Rosary from his pocket and declared, “The Bible is in the Rosary and the Rosary is in […]

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Constructing Heaven on Earth

September 3, AD 2015 1 Comment
Constructing Heaven on Earth

I became fascinated with old churches during my one-year stay in Europe. While I realize that Christ is no less present in a new church than in an old one, and while I have had meaningful spiritual experiences in churches of modern design, there is something about old churches that helps me pray more and […]

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The Silence of Christ

July 16, AD 2015 2 Comments
The Silence of Christ

(SPOILER WARNING: This article refers to climactic plot points in Shusaku Endo’s novel Silence.) I am a pessimist by temperament and as I observe a world in which living consistently with one’s Catholic beliefs becomes more and more difficult, I ask, “Why is Christ silent amidst the persecution of His Church?” I have been advised […]

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On Evangelium Vitae and Star Wars

June 18, AD 2015 0 Comments
On Evangelium Vitae and Star Wars

What was said about history being philosophy teaching by example can also be said of movies. Movies can illustrate philosophy (and even theology) by showing the consequences of following ideas to their logical conclusions. Due to the extent to which people, consciously or unconsciously, turn to movies as their source of principles to guide their […]

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