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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Eastern Promises

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Taut, grippingly powerful story of the Russian underworld as a midwife in a London hospital (Naomi Watts) tries to locate the family of Russian girl who died giving birth; when she reveals she has the dead girl's incriminating diary, she becomes the target of a restaurateur-mobster (Armin Mueller-Stahl), his alcoholic bully of a son (Vincent Cassel) and their taciturn chauffeur (Viggo Mortensen). Director David Cronenberg's somber thriller is crafted with impressive artistry, and performances -- including those of Sinead Cusack and Jerzy Skolimowski -- are excellent, but though the violence is artistically valid extreme caution is advised as there are some graphic images and one intense sexual encounter. Brutal violence with bloodshed, the mutilation of a corpse, a graphic sexual act, rear and fleeting full-frontal-male and upper-female nudity, blood hemorrhaging, an extended tattooing sequence, rough language and profanity, and drug and rape references. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is L -- limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

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Stephen of Mar Saba: A "do not disturb" sign helped today's saint find holiness and peace. 
<p>Stephen of Mar Saba was the nephew of St. John Damascene, who introduced the young boy to monastic life beginning at age 10. When he reached 24, Stephen served the community in a variety of ways, including guest master. After some time he asked permission to live a hermit's life. The answer from the abbot was yes and no: Stephen could follow his preferred lifestyle during the week, but on weekends he was to offer his skills as a counselor. Stephen placed a note on the door of his cell: "Forgive me, Fathers, in the name of the Lord, but please do not disturb me except on Saturdays and Sundays." </p><p>Despite his calling to prayer and quiet, Stephen displayed uncanny skills with people and was a valued spiritual guide. </p><p>His biographer and disciple wrote about Stephen: "Whatever help, spiritual or material, he was asked to give, he gave. He received and honored all with the same kindness. He possessed nothing and lacked nothing. In total poverty he possessed all things." </p><p>Stephen died in 794.</p> American Catholic Blog Father, grant us the grace to be humble and content to place ourselves at your service. You know the role you want us to play in your kingdom. Following where you lead is the only sure way to find success and enjoy the adventure. We ask your grace to know this, in Jesus's name, Amen.


 
CATHOLIC GREETINGS
Tuesday of Holy Week
While Lent has a penitential character, it is also a time for reflecting on the baptismal commitment we make as Christians.

Monday of Holy Week
Holy Week reminds us of the price Jesus paid for our salvation. Take time for prayer at home and at church.

Palm Sunday
Holy Week services and prayers invite us to follow Jesus into Jerusalem, experiencing the events of his passion and death.

Praying for You
As they grow closer to the Easter sacraments, your parish’s RCIA candidates count on your prayers.

Congratulations
Thanks be to God for uncountable mercies--for every blessing!




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