Friday, October 16, 2009





16 OCT 2009 (VIS) - Given below are extracts from further reports of the language groups, presented yesterday morning in the Vatican's Synod Hall during the Fifteenth General Congregation, the texts of which were only made public yesterday afternoon. ENGLISH LANGUAGE GROUP A: ARCHBISHOP ANTHONY JOHN VALENTINE OBINNA OF OWERRI, NIGERIA. "There was a positive and healthy experience of ecclesial communion throughout the Synod. Let us try to transmit this within our Churches and organisations. ... The lay faithful have to be made aware of their role as agents of reconciliation, justice and peace in their areas of work or spheres of activity. ... To strengthen the African family it is not sufficient to condemn: positive initiatives need to be undertaken to correct irregular situations. To respond to the numerous victims of injustice on the continent, the unborn (abortion), orphans, street children, disabled, prisoners, persecuted and marginalised communities, we need to create structures of justice, peace, and pastoral care, understanding and empathy in the Church and from the Church. ... The compendium of the Church's social doctrine should be an obligatory text for the formation and skills acquisition of lay people. ... We need to use official texts on human life and sexuality to teach seminarians and young people the Christian doctrine and approach to sexuality. ... The catechesis on the family has to be promoted to become part of the compendium of the Church's social doctrine. Women have to be given roles in the Church as full members. Renewed efforts have to be made to eliminate discrimination against women in all areas". ENGLISH LANGUAGE GROUP B: BISHOP SITHEMBELE ANTON SIPUKA OF UMTATA, SOUTH AFRICA. "We note that the lack of publicity for the Synod reflects our weakness in communication, so we need, on our return, to communicate what we discussed and decided here. We could give more publicity to the results of the Synod in South Africa to make up for shortcomings in its preparation. We note that there is a link between this and the last Synod, the Family of God and how to keep them together are the objectives. We need to organise more Synods, reinforce the commissions of justice and peace, or establish them where they do not exist, and form small committees to spread the results from the foundations, even before the final publication of the results of the Synod by the Pope. ... Unfortunately, we do not have a permanent formation after Baptism and Confirmation that might help people remain in the Church. For this reason we have to look again at our current methodology of catechesis. There is a problem with the hierarchical structure in African society as a result of which superiors cannot ask forgiveness of inferiors. For example, it is unthinkable that a husband would ask forgiveness of a wife or an old man of a young man. This also applies to ethnic groups: one ethnic group might not consider it appropriate to ask another for forgiveness. It further appears that traditional African means of reconciliation are an obstacle to the Christian ideal and practice of reconciliation". FRENCH LANGUAGE GROUP B: BISHOP LOUIS PORTELLA MBUYU OF KINKALA, PRESIDENT OF THE EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE OF THE CONGO. "There are many urgent requirements: (1) The formation of people with decision-making power, now and in the future (a spiritual and doctrinal, but also a technical formation, undertaken by chaplains who have also undergone appropriate formation). (2) Giving women their due place. (3) Educating people in peace from an early age and helping them change their way of looking at others, the same applies to education in the rule law and in all other Christian values that concern society. The family, the fundamental cell of society, merits important pastoral attention. The pastoral care of the family involves all its members: children and young people must receive a careful education, couples must progress in conjugal love, parents must accept their responsibilities as the first teachers of their children. The Christian values of matrimony and family must therefore be at the centre of appropriate pastoral initiatives. The relationship between our culture and the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Reconciliation leads us towards an incultured catechesis of these Sacraments. In this sector, why not think about a continental Eucharistic Congress inspired by theological research, catechesis and incultured celebration?" ENGLISH LANGUAGE GROUPS E: BISHOP MARTIN IGWEMEZIE UZOUKWU OF MINNA, NIGERIA. "We have to have a positive attitude towards African traditions, see them as an opportunity and examine them closely to purify and use them in the process of reconciliation. Diversity too has to be seen as a gift; it was created by God and it is a resource. But often politicians use our diversity to divide one ethnic group from another and create tension and conflict; for this reason reconciliation has to be de-politicised, freed from the blackmail of not always clear political motivations. ... Particular attention must be paid to the formation of the clergy who in their work are building the Kingdom of God every day. Even the priest risks losing sight of the greatness of his vocation and is threatened by the mentality of the world that spreads the non-values of materialism. The priest has to imitate Christ in serving, not in being served. Seminarians should be taught how to use the new media, to make their education more complete and to be able to evangelise also using internet and other new instruments that become available with technological progress".SE/FIFTEENTH GENERAL CONGREGATION/... VIS 091016 (920)


VATICAN CITY, 16 OCT 2009 (VIS) - Holy See Press Office Director Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J. released the following declaration yesterday afternoon: "The first of the planned meetings with representatives of the Society of St. Pius X will take place on the morning of Monday 26 October. "For the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei' the meeting will be attended, apart from by its secretary Msgr. Guido Pozzi, by Archbishop Luis F. Ladaria Ferrer S.J., secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and by the previously appointed experts: Fr. Charles Morerod O.P., secretary of the International Theological Commission; Msgr. Fernando Ocariz, vicar general of Opus Dei; and Fr. Karl Josef Becker S.J. All three experts are consultors of the Congregation for he Doctrine of the Faith. "The meeting will take place in the Palazzo del Sant'Uffizio. The contents of the discussions, which will focus on unresolved doctrinal issues, will remain strictly private. "At the end of the meeting a communique will be released".OP/MEETING/SOCIETY ST. PIUS X VIS 091016 (180)

POPE MEETS PRINCE OF MONACO AND UKRAINIAN PRIME MINISTER VATICAN CITY, 16 OCT 2009 (VIS) - "This morning the Holy Father Benedict XVI received in audience Prince Albert II of Monaco", according to a Holy See Press Office communique released today. The Prince "then went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. who was accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States. "In the course of the cordial discussions, and having mentioned certain aspects of the current international situation such as the integral development of peoples and the protection of natural resources and the environment, attention turned to themes of mutual interest including the importance of a solid cultural and moral formation of the young and the defence of life in all its phases". This morning the Holy Father Benedict XVI also received in audience Yulia Vladimirovna Timoshenko, prime minister of Ukraine. "The prime minister subsequently went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. who was accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States. "During the cordial discussions, attention turned to certain questions associated with the promotion of peace and of international co-operation, especially in Europe. "The focus then turned to the contribution made by the Catholic Church, of both rites, to Ukrainian society, especially in the field of education and in spreading human and Christian values". "Furthermore, mention was made of all matters of mutual interest in the relationship between the civil and religious authorities, and the hope was expressed that the recent positive developments may help to solve the unresolved questions".OP/AUDIENCES/MONACO:UKRAINE VIS 091016 (270)

GUARANTEEING RESOURCES TO END THE SCOURGE OF HUNGER VATICAN CITY, 16 OCT 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father has sent a Message to Jacques Diouf, director general of the United Nation's Rome-based Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) for the occasion of World Food Day. The Day falls annually on 16 October and commemorates the anniversary of the foundation of the FAO in 1945. The theme of this year's Day is: "Achieving food security in times of crisis". "The current crisis, which affects all sectors of the economy without distinction, strikes particularly seriously at the agricultural world where the situation has become dramatic", writes Benedict XVI. "The crisis calls on governments and on the various components of the international community to make decisive and effective choices. "Guaranteeing individuals and peoples the chance to defeat the scourge of hunger means ensuring they have real access to adequate and healthy nourishment", he adds. "This is, in fact, a concrete expression of the right to life which, though solemnly proclaimed, all too often fails to be fully implemented". The Holy Father further observes that the theme of the Day makes it clear that "agriculture must be able to command a sufficient level of investment and resources". The theme also "helps us to understand that the goods of creation are by their nature limited, and hence they require responsible management capable of favouring food security, also with a view to that of future generations". "Achieving this objective", Benedict XVI continues, "calls for a modification in lifestyles and ways of thinking". What is needed is "a form of co-operation that protects the cultivation methods of each area and avoids the thoughtless exploitation of natural resources. Furthermore, I hope that such co-operation may safeguard the values specific to the rural world and the fundamental rights of people who work the land. ... Experience shows that technical solutions, advanced though they may be, are ineffective if they do not focus on the person, who remains the principle protagonist and who, in his spiritual and material dimension, is the origin and aim of all activity". Finally the Pope recalls that access to food "is a fundamental right of individuals and peoples, and will become a reality, and hence a form of security, if adequate development is guaranteed in all the various regions. In particular, the drama of hunger will only be overcome by 'eliminating the structural causes that give rise to it and promoting the agricultural development of poorer countries. This can be done by investing in rural infrastructures, irrigation systems, transport, organisation of markets, and in the development and dissemination of agricultural technology that can make the best use of the human, natural and socio-economic resources that are more readily available at the local level'".MESS/WORLD FOOD DAY/DIOUF VIS 091016 (460)

CHRISTIANS AND HINDUS FOR INTEGRAL HUMAN DEVELOPMENT VATICAN CITY, 16 OCT 2009 (VIS) - Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue, has written a message to Hindus for the feast of Deepavali, which is being celebrated during the month of October. The message, published today, is entitled: "Christians and Hindus: Committed to Integral Human Development". "In the process of integral development, protection of human life and respect for the dignity and fundamental rights of the person, are a responsibility of everyone, both individually and collectively", says the text, which also bears the signature of Archbishop Pier Luigi Celata, secretary of the pontifical council. "Respect for others therefore implies the recognition of their freedom: freedom of conscience, thought and religion". Cardinal Tauran and Archbishop Celata conclude by stating that "integral human development also requires the political will to work towards ensuring greater protection of human rights and peaceful co-existence. Development, freedom and peace are inextricably linked together, and they complete one another".CON-DIR/DEEPAVALI/TAURAN:CELATA VIS 091016 (170)

AUDIENCES VATICAN CITY, 16 OCT 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences: - Cardinal Ivan Dias, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples. - Archbishop Giovanni Angelo Becciu, apostolic nuncio to Cuba.AP/.../... VIS 091016 (40)

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS VATICAN CITY, 16 OCT 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed: - Bishop Henryk Marian Tomasik, auxiliary of Siedlce, Poland, as bishop of Radom (area 8,000, population 918,328, Catholics 911,180, priests 771, religious 531), Poland. - Fr. Felice Ruffini M.I., as a member of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care.NER:NA/.../TOMASIK:RUFFINI VIS 091016 (60)



The USCCB reports that six years of intense work on the English translation of the Third Edition of the Roman Missal are drawing to an end with five action items set to be voted on by the U.S. Catholic Bishops at their meeting in Baltimore, November 16-19. Divine Worship items include votes on ICEL (International Committee for English in the Liturgy) Gray Book (final draft) translations, of the Proper of Saints, the Commons and the Roman Missal Supplement as well as the U.S. Propers and the U.S. adaptations to the Roman Missal. Approval of these items requires the positive vote of two-thirds of the Latin Church members of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and subsequent confirmation by the Holy See. The Proper of Saints is the collection of the specific prayers provided for each saint included in the universal liturgical calendar. The Commons is a collection of general prayers provided for celebrating other saints listed in the Roman Martyrology who are not included in the universal liturgical calendar. ICEL began its work of translation of the new Missale Romanum in 2002. The first drafts, or “green books,” arrived at the bishops’ conferences of the English-speaking countries in 2004, and an extensive process of consultation begun. Additionally, the USCCB Committee on Divine Worship (formerly the Bishops’ Committee on the Liturgy) worked on the revision of translations and inclusion of items proper to the United States, which are not included in the Latin text.
“These five items will conclude the work of the U.S. Bishops on the Roman Missal. We now wait for final approval from the Holy See before the new English text can begin to be usedin parishes across the United States,” said Monsignor Anthony Sherman, executive director of the USCCB Office of Divine Worship. “A process of catechesis follows now, so that everyone is ready to move along when we get the final text from the Vatican. Pastors and faithful alike can find excellent catechetical materials posted on our Web page (” Regarding the translations of the Proper of Saints, the Commons, and the Roman Missal Supplement, Msgr. Sherman noted that ICEL has addressed many of the concerns highlighted during the Green Book consultation, and that word order and vocabulary have been improved in some cases to aid in the clarity of some complex orations. The U.S. Adaptations to the Roman Missal include a number of adaptations which are included in the current Sacramentary but need to be presented again with the new text. They consist mostly of changes to rubrics (instructions to the presider, which usually appear in red) for Lent, Good Friday, the Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday. The adaptations also recommend for inclusion in the Missal the Rites of Blessings of Oils and Consecrating the Chrism at the Chrism Mass, which are currently contained in the Sacramentary, and a series of texts currently in the Sacramentary Supplement (2004) which would otherwise be lost since the supplement will become obsolete with the publication of the third edition of the Roman Missal. The final text of the third edition of the Roman Missal for the Dioceses of the United States must include orations and formularies for the feasts, memorials and commemorations from the Proper Calendar for the United States. These come from a number of sources. Prayers and translations (when English was not the original source) have been revised in accordance to the principles of Liturgiam Authenticam and in some cases modified, as with the prayers for use on Independence Day and Thanksgiving Day. Consultation on the five final liturgical items was sent to bishops immediately after the Administrative Committee meeting in September. Modifications will be reviewed by the Committee on Divine Worship in late October, and the final drafts will be presented to the body of Bishops in November.--- (SOURCE:



Catholic Herald reports that religious believers face "the challenge of relevance" in today's society, Tony Blair said last week at a Jesuit university in America. The former Prime Minister said the challenge includes "showing how faith can be a force for the future, for progress, that it will not fade as science and technology and material prosperity alters the way we live". "We face an aggressive secular attack from without. We face the threat of extremism, often from within," he said. "These challenges are not for Muslims alone or Christians alone or Jews, Hindus or Buddhists for that matter. They are challenges for all people of faith. "Those who scorn God and those who do violence in God's name both represent views of religion. But both offer no hope for faith in the 21st century," he told an audience in Georgetown University, Washington DC. Mr Blair, who became a Catholic in 2007 months after stepping down as Prime Minister, was speaking at a conference entitled "A Common Word Between Us and You: A Global Agenda for Change". The conference has been held annually in different capitals - including Vatican City - since Pope Benedict responded to an offer for dialogue by a group of Muslim scholars who wrote to him following his 2006 address in Regensburg, Germany. His address, which quoted a Byzantine emperor linking Islam to violence, was regarded by Muslims as incendiary. In his speech Mr Blair said: "How do we make our relations, so fraught in the past, fruitful in the future? "First, we need to understand each other, learn about our roots, how and why we are as we are, learn the essential spirituality, peacefulness and goodness of the others' faith," he said. "This means we educate each other about each other." Second, Mr Blair said, "we need to respect each other ... One reason why peace between Israel and Palestine matters so much is: that it is a test, not just of conflict resolution but of even-handedness and respect." In response to a question following his remarks Mr Blair said he was told that the Israeli-Palestinian stalemate was "not really about religion, but about politics", just as he had been told about the situation in Northern Ireland. While that may be, he said, "a lot of people in those places do think it's about religion", and their views have to be taken into account. "Third, we must act," Mr Blair said. "Our relationship with each other... will best be judged in action, in the work we can do together in relieving poverty, fighting injustice, preventing disease and bringing hope to those in despair." Abdal-Hakim Murad, a lecturer at Cambridge University and one of the scholars who originally wrote to the Pope, said Mr Blair showed a misguided notion of religion. He said: "The usual platitudes are here; a kind of Hans Küng confidence that if we know each other we will fall in love with each other. Blair seems to regard religions as essentially repositories of shared values, and does not seem to acknowledge that they are based on claims about reality that in fact are incommensurable in important ways." Sheikh Abdal Hakim welcomed his emphasis on action, but said his track record was "not generally regarded by Muslims as peaceable and rooted in a deep understanding of other cultures". He said: "I'm afraid Muslims will continue to regard him as a man whose actual policies do not match his rhetoric." James Bogle, the vice-chairman of the Catholic Union of Great Britain, welcomed Mr Blair's comments. "One could hardly do otherwise," he said. "We all want peace and reconciliation. Reconciliation, however, also includes reconciling one's deeds with one's words. Tony Blair's voting record in the House of Commons on life issues, including euthanasia, is very difficult, if not impossible, to reconcile with his new-found Catholic faith. "He also appears to feel that he is at liberty to reject what the highest authorities in his Church teach, if he does not agree. It makes it harder to appreciate the speech of a politician who seems unable to explain the dissonance of such opposing views," he said. Lord Alton, a Catholic peer, said he agreed entirely with Mr Blair that "co-existence between the great religious faiths and secular society remains the most daunting challenge facing contemporary society". He described the Tony Blair Faith Foundation, which aims to promote respect between faiths, as "an excellent initiative". Mr Blair established the Tony Blair Faith Foundation last year and also serves as the official envoy to the Middle East on behalf of the US, the United Nations, Russia and the European Union. Sheikh Mustafa Efendi Ceri, grand mufti of Bosnia-Herzegovina, echoed two noted American speechmakers, President Franklin Roosevelt and Martin Luther King, in his remarks at the conference. He noted that the first two days of last year's "Common Word" dialogue were spent with complaints members of one faith had about the other faith. But the third and final day was different, because of "what Martin Luther King said: 'I have a dream,' not 'I have a complaint.'"Sheikh Ceri, while lauding freedom of expression as necessary in society, recalled some of Roosevelt's "four freedoms" during his remarks. "We must go from freedom of expression to freedom from want, freedom from fear, freedom from hatred," he said. (SOURCE:


UCAN reports that Catholics in Kathmandu are all set to join hands with their Hindu compatriots in celebrating their major Tihar festival, which commemorates the victory of light over darkness.

A man in Kathmandu sells colorful powders used for Bhai Tika
The five-day-long festival in Hindu-majority Nepal begins on Oct. 16, and is equivalent to India's Diwali, which starts Oct. 17.
"As the festival holds special cultural importance, all Nepalese, irrespective of their faiths join in the celebrations as one community," Father Robin Rai, parochial vicar at the Church of the Assumption, told UCA News.
"Though there will be no official statement from the Church wishing our Hindu brothers and sisters on the occasion, I personally would like to wish them a happy and safe Tihar," he said.
During the festival, houses are decorated with electric lamps, and candles and oil lamps are placed on windowsills and verandas. People celebrate by feasting on meat and sweets.
Father Rai said that officially, the Church does not light lamps or candles to mark the festival but parishioners do celebrate the festival in their homes and with relatives.
Rosemary Giri, a Catholic girl, says she will light candles and diyos (oil lamps) in her home "like our Hindu brothers and sisters."
"As we have always taken this festival to be a time of merry-making rather than the worshipping of gods and goddesses, I plan to celebrate it with gusto this year too," Giri told UCA News.

People buy garlands to decorate their homes for the Tihar festival
The course of the Nepalese festival follows a journey from darkness to light, with symbols of death in the form of crows on the first day and dogs, the traditional guards of the underworld on the second, giving way to the lighting of lamps on the third and main day of the festival.
The fourth day is dedicated to Yama, the god of death, to whom people pray for long life. On the final day, called Bhai Tika, women and girls place tika (a paste of rice and vermillion) on the foreheads of their brothers and wish them long life and happiness.
In Pokhara, a scenic town about 200 kilometers west of Kathmandu, male parishioners will gather at the Catholic church here to receive tika from nuns on Oct. 19.
"Though the celebration will not be exactly like our Hindu brothers' and sisters', nuns of congregations like the Missionaries of Charity and the Sisters of the Cross of Chavanod will put tika on the foreheads of male parishioners," said Simon Lama, a parishioner.
Annie Fitzpatrick, a parishioner of Assumption Church here, said she is eagerly waiting for Bhai Tika to come so that she can show her love and respect for her brothers.
"This is the time to make merry, enjoy the holidays and show our respect to my brothers by putting tika on their foreheads," said Fitzpatrick, a schoolteacher. "All this is part of our rich culture and we have been marking the occasion along with the Hindus for ages."
Ruben Shrestha, another Catholic, said he celebrates Tihar as all his family members are Hindus. "My Hindu parents celebrate the occasion, worshipping the various gods and goddesses and feasting on a variety of food and decorating our house. Except for the worshipping part, I join in the celebrations with them," said Shrestha.



CISA reports that the Kenyan delegation skipped today’s deliberations at the African Synod in Rome to attend the burial of the late bishop of Malindi, Francis Baldacchino who died last Friday.According to Fr Martin Wanyoike, the team led by Cardinal John Njue of Kenya, left Rome on Monday October 12, evening for the burial that took place today 1500hrs (Kenyan time) in the island of Malta where the 73 year old bishop was born.Njue was accompanied by Archbishop Boniface Lele of the Metropolitan See of Mombasa which incorporates Malindi as a suffragan diocese and Bishop Philip Sulumeti of Kakamega diocese in western Kenya.Archbishop Peter Kairo of Nyeri and Martin Kivuva of Machakos remained in Rome for today’s session.Meanwhile, the clergy, religious and Christians of Malindi diocese in Kenya celebrated a Requiem Mass today at St. Anthony Cathedral for their late shepherd.“The Mass is respect to our Bishop. We are celebrating it to run con-current with the burial that is taking place in Malta today,” said Fr Ambrose Muli, Father-in- Charge at the cathedral.At the same time, the diocese is planning for another diocesan Requem Mass, that will bring together faithful from different parts of Malindi Diocese this Sunday.Bishop Philip Anyolo, the acting Kenya Episcopal Conference Chairman, who was to celebrate today’s Requiem Mass with the clergy will now celebrate the one scheduled for Sunday. (SOURCE:


Cath News reports that teachers will go on strike in some of Brisbane's biggest Catholic schools and across Queensland on October 28 over pay, The Courier Mail reports.
Teachers in the Cairns, Toowoomba and some of southeast Queensland's best known private schools are set to leave their classrooms, the report said, including Brisbane's St Joseph's Nudgee College, St Joseph's College (Terrace), All Hallows' School, Marist, Villanova and Lourdes Hill colleges.
The Queensland Independent Education Union is advising parents to keep their children at home on the day.
The union is seeking pay parity with teachers interstate. A Queensland Catholic Education Commission spokesman said 31 percent of Catholic school teachers voted to endorse the industrial action. (SOURCE:


St. Marguerite d'Youville
Feast: October 16 (Canada)
Feast Day:
October 16
15 October 1701, Varennes, Quebec
23 December 1771, Montreal, Canada
9 December 1990, by Pope John Paul II
Major Shrine:
Chapel of St. Marie Marguerite d'Youville, near Montreal
Patron of:
Against death of children, difficult marriages, in-law problems, loss of parents, opposition of Church authorities, people ridiculed for piety, victims of adultery, victims of unfaithfulness, widows

MARGUERITE d'YOUVILLE, the first native Canadian to be elevated to sainthood, was born October 15, 1701 at Varennes, Quebec. She was the eldest of six children born to Christophe Dufrost de Lajemmerais and Marie-Renée Gaultier. Her father died when she was seven years old leaving this family of six in great poverty. It was only through the influence of her great grandfather, Pierre Boucher, that she was enabled to study for two years at the Ursulines in Quebec. Upon her return home, she became an invaluable support to her mother and undertook the education of her brothers and sisters. She married François d'Youville in 1722 and the young couple made their home with his mother who made life miserable for her daughter-in-law. She soon came to realize that her husband had no interest in making a home life. His frequent absences and illegal liquor trading with the Indians caused her great suffering. She was pregnant with her sixth child when François became seriously ill. She faithfully cared for him until his death in 1730. By age 29, she had experienced desperate poverty and suffered the loss of her father and husband. Four of her six children had died in infancy. In all these sufferings Marguerite grew in her belief of God's presence in her life and of his tender love for every human person. She undertook many charitable works with complete trust in God, whom she loved as a Father. She provided for the education of her two sons, who later became priests, and she welcomed a blind woman into her home. Marguerite was soon joined by three young women who shared her love and concern for the poor. On December 31, 1737, they consecrated themselves to God and promised to serve him in the person of the poor. Marguerite, without even realizing it, had become the foundress of the Sisters of Charity of Montreal, "Grey Nuns".

St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
Feast: October 17
Feast Day:
October 17
22 July 1647, L'Hautecour, Burgundy, France
17 October 1690, Paray-le-Monial, Burgundy, France
13 May 1920, Rome by Benedict XV
Patron of:
those suffering with polio, devotees of the Sacred Heart, loss of parents

Religious of the Visitation Order. Apostle of the Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, born at Lhautecour, France, 22 July, 1647; died at Paray-le-Monial, 17 October, 1690.
Her parents, Claude Alacoque and Philiberte Lamyn, were distinguished less for temporal possessions than for their virtue, which gave them an honourable position. From early childhood Margaret showed intense love for the Blessed Sacrament, and preferred silence and prayer to childish amusements. After her first communion at the age of nine, she practised in secret severe corporal mortifications, until paralysis confined her to bed for four years. At the end of this period, having made a vow to the Blessed Virgin to consecrate herself to religious life, she was instantly restored to perfect health. The death of her father and the injustice of a relative plunged the family in poverty and humiliation, after which more than ever Margaret found consolation in the Blessed Sacrament, and Christ made her sensible of His presence and protection. He usually appeared to her as the Crucified or the Ecce Homo, and this did not surprise her, as she thought others had the same Divine assistance. When Margaret was seventeen, the family property was recovered, and her mother besought her to establish herself in the world. Her filial tenderness made her believe that the vow of childhood was not binding, and that she could serve God at home by penance and charity to the poor. Then, still bleeding from her self-imposed austerities, she began to take part in the pleasures of the world. One night upon her return from a ball, she had a vision of Christ as He was during the scourging, reproaching her for infidelity after He had given her so many proofs of His love. During her entire life Margaret mourned over two faults committed at this time—the wearing of some superfluous ornaments and a mask at the carnival to please her brothers. (SOURCE:

St. Hedwig
Feast: October 16
Feast Day:
October 16
1174 in Bavaria
October 1243 at Trebnitz
1266 by Pope Clement IV
Patron of:
Bavaria; Berlin, Germany; brides; duchesses; death of children; difficult marriages; Görlitz, Germany, diocese of; Silesia; victims of jealousy; widows

The father of this saint was Bertold III of Andechs, Marquis of Meran, Count of Tirol, and Prince (or Duke) of Carinthia and Istria, as he is styled in the Chronicle of Andechs and in the life of St. Elizabeth of Hungary. Her mother was Agnes, daughter of the Count of Rotletchs. St. Hedwiges, by a distinguishing effect of the divine mercy in her favour, was from her cradle formed to virtue by the example and lessons of her devout mother and of those that were placed about her. In her infancy she discovered no marks of levity, and all her inclinations were turned to piety and devotion. She was placed very young in the monastery of Lutzingen, in Franconia, and only taken thence when twelve years old to marry Henry, Duke of Silesia, descended of the Dukes of Glogau, in that country; to which match she only consented out of compliance with the will of her parents. In this state, by the fidelity with which she acquitted herself of all her respective duties towards God, her husband, her children, and her family, she was truly the courageous woman described by the wise men, who is to be sought from the utmost boundaries of the earth; making it her study in all things only to please God, and to sanctify her own soul and her household, she directed all her views and actions to this great end. With her husband's free consent she always passed holydays, fast-days, and all seasons of devotion in continence. She bore her husband three sons, Henry, Conrad, and Boleslas; and three daughters, Agnes, Sophia, and Gertrude. After the birth of her sixth child, she engaged her husband to agree to a mutual vow of perpetual continence, which they made in presence of the bishop of the place; from which time they never met but in public places. Her husband faithfully kept this vow for thirty years that he lived afterwards; during which time he never wore any gold, silver, or purple, and never shaved his beard; from which circumstance he was surnamed Henry the Bearded. (SOURCE:


Luke 12: 1 - 7
In the meantime, when so many thousands of the multitude had gathered together that they trod upon one another, he began to say to his disciples first, "Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.
Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known.
Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.
"I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.
But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear him!
Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God.
Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.

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