Archive for March 31, 2013

 

Your problem is really not your problem, it is your attitude that’s your problem.

Find out why in this Video.

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The Vatican is not normally the subject of breaking news, but when a Pope decides to step down, that’s big news; the last time it happened was around the time when Johannes Guttenberg invented the printing press in the 15th century, 300 years before the United States was born.

The news has put the spotlight on the Vatican, but interestingly, many North Americans know very little about it as a sovereign city-state. The Vatican is located within the city of Rome; it is 110 acres large and has a population of 800. This makes it the world’s smallest country.

SEE: A Guide To Faith-Based Investing

Holy See Revenue and Investments
In order to gain an understanding of the complex economy of the Vatican, it is important to establish the differences between Vatican City and the Holy See. The Holy See is the governing body of the nation. If you entered into a contract with the territory, you would do it with the Holy See, in most cases. Vatican City is the physical area where the Holy See resides.

The Holy See generates revenue from Peter’s Pence, an 8th Century term for donations that are received from Catholics all over the world. From individuals to dioceses, the Holy See collects the donations through a special department. The Holy See also gains revenue from interest and investments of its reserves.

Historically, the Holy See invested mainly in Italian industries, spreading its portfolio between stocks and bonds, and limiting its stake in companies to less than 6%. It has invested conservatively, choosing to buy and hold proven companies in strong industries; because of this, investments in the developing world are limited.

More recent investments have been more international, however, particularly in western European currencies and bonds, with some activity in the New York Stock Exchange. The Holy See also has investments in real estate around the world, particularly in land and churches.
There are some investments that the Holy See won’t make however; no investments are made in companies that go against church values, such as pharmaceutical companies that manufacture birth control.

Currently, the Holy See is running a deficit. The Los Angeles Times Reports that the Holy See had a shortfall of $18.4 million in 2012. Officials blamed the soft European economy and the cost of paying its 2,832 employees, as well as spreading the Catholic faith through its various media outlets.

Although Pope Benedict XVI, had made efforts to make the country more transparent, its finances are still a bit of mystery, and some believe that the numbers are more general in nature than accurate and audited. MORE HERE 

 

 

Why are you downcast, O my soul? (Psalm 43:5)

Is there ever any reason to be downcast? Actually, there are two reasons, but only two. If we were still unbelievers, we would give a reason to be downcast; or if we have been converted but continue to live in sin, we are downcast as a consequence.

Expect for those two conditions, there is never a reason to be downcast, for everything else may be brought to God “by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving” (Phil.4:6). And through all our times of need, difficulty, and trials, we may exercise faith in the power and love of God.

“Put your hope in God” (Ps.43:5). Please remember there is never a time when we cannot hope in God, whatever our need of however great our difficulty may be. Even when our situation appears to be impossible, our work is to “hope on God”. Our hope will not be vain, and in the Lord’s own timing help will come.

Oh, the hundreds, even the thousands, of times I have found this to be true in the past twenty-six years and seven months of my life! When it seems impossible for help to come, IT DID COME, for GOD has His own unlimited resources. In ten thousands different ways, and at ten thousands different time, God’s help may come to us.

Our work is to lay our petitions before the Lord and in childlike simplicity to pour out our hearts before Him, saying,

“I do not deserve that you should hear me and answer my request, but for the sake of my precious Lord Jesus; for His sake, answer my prayer. And give me grace to wait patiently for you to grant my petition. For I believe you will do it in your own time and way.”

“For I will yet praise him!” (Ps.43:5). More prayer, more exercising of the faith, and more patient waiting leads to blessings- abundant blessings, I have found it to be true many hundreds of times, and therefore I continually say to myself, “Put your hope on God.”