CATHOLIC NEWS WORLD: SUN. JAN. 9, 2011: HEADLINES-
Before the Angelus prayer, the Pope recalled Sunday’s feast of the Baptism of Our Lord; when the Church; “contemplates once more the revelation of God who is close to humanity, who visits his people in the person of Jesus Christ, in order to set them free from the tyranny of sin and death”. He prayed “may we open the doors of our hearts to Christ and welcome him into the world of today”.
As is tradition the Holy Father marked the feast by bestowing the Sacrament of Baptism on newborn babies. Sunday morning in the magnificent setting of the Sistine Chapel, 21 infants ranging between four months and four weeks and all children of Vatican employees, were welcomed into the Church in a joyful and intimate ceremony presided over by the Pope.
In his homily Pope Benedict described Baptism as an act of love. God he said, “in gifting us the faith.. has given us what is most precious in life, that is, the most beautiful and real reason for which to live”.
“By Baptism, these children are gifted an indelible spiritual seal, their "character" that marks them forever as belonging to the Lord and makes them living members of his mystical body, which is the Church”.
The Holy Father then called on parishes to support parents and families as they help these children grow and mature in faith. He said, “Collaboration between the Christian community and family is greatly needed in the current social context, in which the family institution is threatened from all sides, and finds itself having to face many difficulties in its mission to educate in the faith. The lack of stable cultural reference points and the rapid transformation to which society is continuously subject, makes the commitment to education very difficult. Therefore, it is necessary that the parishes strive increasingly to support families, as the small domestic churches in their task of transmitting the faith”.
Below a draft Vatican Radio translation of Pope Benedict XVI’s homily. Original text in Italian:
Dear brothers and sisters,
It is my pleasure to warmly welcome you this morning, especially you parents and godparents of the 21 infants upon whom, in a few moments time, I will have the joy of administering the Sacrament of Baptism. As has become tradition, this ritual takes place again this year as part of the Holy Eucharist during which we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord. With this the Feast, on the first Sunday after the Epiphany, the Christmas season concludes with the manifestation of the Lord in the Jordan.
According to the evangelist Matthew (3:13-17), Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized by John, in fact, all of Palestine flocked to hear the preaching of this great prophet, the announcement of the coming of the Kingdom of God, and be baptized, that is to submit themselves to the sign of penance that calls to conversion from sin. While it is called baptism, it was not the sacramental rite which we celebrate today, as you well know, in fact it is by his death and resurrection that Jesus institutes the Sacraments and gives birth to the Church. What was administered by John, was rather an act of repentance, an act which called for humility before God, for a new beginning: by immersing themselves in the water, the penitents acknowledged their sins, implored God for the purification of their sins and were sent out to change their error of their ways.
So, when the Baptist sees Jesus who, in a line with sinners, comes to be baptized, he is stunned; recognizing him as the Messiah, the Holy One of God, He who is without sin, John expresses his confusion: he himself, the Baptist wants to be baptized by Jesus, but Jesus tells him not to resist, to agree to carry out this act, fitting to “fulfil all righteousness". With these words, Jesus shows that he came into the world to carry out the will of He who sent him, to do everything that the Father asks him, that it is in obedience to the Father that he has agreed to become a man. This first act reveals that Jesus is the Son of God, true God as the Father, he is the One who "humbles himself" to become one of us, He who made man agreed to humble himself to death on the cross ( cf Phil 2:7).
The baptism of Jesus, which we commemorate today, fits into this logic of humility: it is the gesture of He who wants to be one of us in everyway and who stands in line with sinners, He who is without sin allows Himself to be treated like a sinner (cf. 2 Cor 5:21), to carry on His shoulders the burden of guilt of all humanity. He is the "servant of Yahweh" of which the prophet Isaiah spoke in the first reading (see 42.1). His humility is dictated by His wish to establish full communion with humanity, the desire to achieve genuine solidarity with man and his condition. Jesus gesture anticipates the Cross, the acceptance of death for our sins. This act of self abasement, in which Jesus wants to totally conform Himself to the Father's plan of love, expresses the perfect harmony of will and purpose that exists between persons of the Holy Trinity. In this act of love, the Spirit of God manifests himself as a dove and comes over him, and at that moment the love that unites Jesus and the Father is witnessed, by those who attend the baptism, in a voice from on high, which they all hear. The Father openly revealed to people the deep communion uniting him to the Son: the voice that resonates from on high states that Jesus is totally obedient to the Father and that this obedience is an expression of love that binds them together. Therefore, the Father is pleased with Jesus, the Son, because he recognises in the gesture Jesus’ desire to follow his will in everything: " This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased " (Mt 3 17). The words of the Father, are also a prelude to the victory of the resurrection.
Dear Parents: the Baptism you ask today for your children, also places them in this mutual exchange of love that is between God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, for this gesture I am about to make, sweeps the love of God over them, flooding them with His gifts. Through the washing with water, your children become part of the life of Jesus, who died on the cross to free us from sin and in rising again, conquered death. So, spiritually immersed into his death and resurrection, they are freed from original sin and begin their life of grace, which is the very life of the Risen Jesus. "He - said St. Paul - gave himself for us to deliver us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for himself a people as his own, eager to do what is good" (Titus 2:14).
Dear friends, in gifting us the faith, the Lord has given us what is most precious in life, that is, the most beautiful and real reason for which to live: it is by grace that we believe in God, that we know his love , he wants to save us and deliver us from evil. Now you, dear parents, godparents, ask the Church to accept these children to her bosom, to give them Baptism, and make this request because of the gift of faith that you yourselves have, in turn, received. Together with the prophet Isaiah, every Christian can say: "The Lord formed me as his servant from the womb" (cf. 49.5), so, dear parents, your children are a precious gift of the Lord, who has reserved their hearts as His own, to be able to fill them with His love. Through the sacrament of Baptism, he consecrates them and calls them to follow Jesus, through the realization of their vocation according to the particular design of love the Father has in mind for each of them; the goal of this earthly pilgrimage will be full communion with Him in eternal happiness.
By Baptism, these children are gifted an indelible spiritual seal, their "character" that marks them forever as belonging to the Lord and makes them living members of his mystical body, which is the Church. While becoming part of the People of God, for these children a path of holiness and conformity to Jesus starts today, a reality that is placed within them like the seed of a beautiful tree, which must be made to grow. Therefore, understanding the magnitude of this gift from the earliest centuries, care was taken to give Baptism to infants at birth. Certainly, free and conscious adherence to this life of faith and love is also required, and that is why it is necessary that, after baptism, they will be educated in faith, educated according to the wisdom of Scripture and the teachings of the Church, so that the seed of faith, which they are receiving today, grows in them and reaches full Christian maturity. The Church, which welcomes them among her children, is responsible, together with the parents and godparents, in accompanying them on this path of growth. Collaboration between the Christian community and family is greatly needed in the current social context, in which the family institution is threatened from all sides, and finds itself having to face many difficulties in its mission to educate in the faith. The lack of stable cultural reference points and the rapid transformation to which society is continuously subject, makes the commitment to education very difficult. Therefore, it is necessary that the parishes strive increasingly to support families, as the small domestic churches in their task of transmitting the faith.
Dear parents, I thank the Lord with you for the gift of the baptism of these your children; As we pray for them, we invoke the abundant gifts of the Holy Spirit, who today consecrates them in the image of Christ priest, prophet and king. We entrust them to the maternal intercession of Mary, asking for them health and long lives so that they can grow and mature in the faith, and bring, with their lives, the fruits of holiness and love. Amen!
Christina-Taylor Greene (9 years old), Gabe Zimmerman (30 years), Dorothy Morris (76 years old), Dorwin Stoddard (76 years old), Phyllis Sheck (79 years old). They were attending a public meeting for congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Miss Giffords (40 years old) was shot through the brain and is in critical condition in hospital.
It was noted by CNN that Judge Roll was returning from Mass, the
Church service he attended before greeting Miss Giffords. He leaves behind his wife, 3 children and 5 grand-children.
The youngest victim, Christina Greene was only 9 years old. She had just been elected by her elementar
y school for the school council. She wanted to learn about the political system. Her mother told MSNBC that she was a beautiful, courageous girl involved in Church, sports and many activities.
Already, a candle-light vigil was held at the scene.
President Barak Obama has called for prayers in a statement: “What Americans do at times of tragedy is to come together and support each other. So at this time I ask all Americans to join me and Michelle in keeping all the victims and their families, including Gabby, in our thoughts and prayers. Those who have been injured, we are rooting for them.”
Obama quote source: WhiteHouse.gov IMAGES: Telegraph.co.uk (Christina & prayer vigil)ivarfjeld.wordpress.com source Obama image
NEWS.COM.AU REPORT- GENEROUS Australians swamped phone lines with about 12,000 calls within the first minute of last night's Flood Relief Appeal.
Many Queenslanders were bracing for more pain today as floodwaters continued to threaten the state.
Last night celebrities, sports stars and politicians came together to man the phones for the "Flood Relief Appeal Australia Unites" at a Brisbane call centre.
By show's end, $10,278,552 had been donated.
The support was so huge there were more than 12,000 calls within the first minute, crashing the phone system.
News Limited led the way for corporate donors, tipping in $500,000, a figure matched last night by the AFL.
The Commonwealth Bank, David Jones, Qantas and Holden also made major donations.
The largest donations came from the New South Wales and Victorian Governments, which each pledged $1 million.
And music promoter Michael Gudinski last night pledged to repeat the Black Saturday Sound Relief events to raise money for flood victims.
Hosted by Eddie McGuire, Leila McKinnon and Karl Stefanovic, the two-hour telethon included appearances from Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Terri and Bindi Irwin.
Country music star Troy Cassar-Daley, who performed at the telethon along with fellow artists Jessica Mauboy, Altiyan Childs, Kasey Chambers, Tina Arena, David Campbell and Lee Kernaghan, said those affected by the floods were doing it tough.
"It's not going to be an easy fix, so we need to do what we can to help these people," Cassar-Daley said.
Every dollar raised last night will go directly to victims of the devastating floods.
Co-host McGuire said there was much more to the telethon than the cash.
"To see the whole of Australia get behind Victoria (over the bushfires) was overwhelming," he said.
"As much as raising money is important, the big thing is for people who are stuck out there. . . to really know we are supporting them," he said.
The Socceroos pledged their support to flood victims, auctioning a signed Socceroos jersey on E-bay.
Star player Tim Cahill is understood to have offered return flights to England for two people to be his special guests at an Everton match.
All proceeds will go to the appeal.
Read more: http://www.news.com.au/national/deluge-of-donations-as-11m-in-pledges-pours-in-at-telethon-event-for-flood-victims/story-e6frfkvr-1225984693827#ixzz1AZZSEThm
UCAN REPORT- Christians in Pakistan are hailing assassinated Punjab governor Salman Taseer as their “hero.”
|Father Emmanuel Yousaf Mani lays a floral tribute on Salman Taseer’s grave in Lahore|
“We strongly condemn the killing of Taseer and salute his courage and struggle for justice and peace in the country,” said Sumaira Shafique, general secretary of Pakistan’s Christian Lawyers Association.
“Though a Muslim, Taseer gave his life for a just cause and has become a hero to the Christian community,” he said.
Shafique was speaking during a Jan. 6 visit to Taseer’s grave at the Military Martyr’s cemetery in Lahore.
Father Emmanuel Yousaf Mani, National Director of the Catholic Bishop’s National Commission for Justice and Peace laid a floral tribute on Taseer’s grave and prayed for him and his family.
Taseer, who was governor of Punjab province, was gunned down on Jan. 4 in Islamabad.
His bodyguard, Malik Mumtaz Hussain Qadri, told police he killed Taseer for criticizing the country’s blasphemy laws.
But there are many who believe Taseer’s killing was part of a wider plot.
|Road leading to the slain governor’s home in Lahore, now guarded by security personnel|
“We urge the government to investigate the matter and bring the culprits to justice,” Father Mani said in a statement.
“Moreover, we strongly recommend the government take a clear stance and strong legislative measures for the eradication of religious extremism in Pakistani society … and take necessary measures to stop the misuse of blasphemy laws,” he continued.
Earlier, following Taseer’s funeral on Jan. 5, a candlelight vigil was held for Taseer at the press club in Karachi.
“Citizens for Democracy,” a newly formed alliance of pro civil-liberty and human rights groups organized the event.
There, hundreds of activists hailed Taseer as a “martyr in the fight against blasphemy laws” and demanded the arrest of those issuing fatwas against politicians struggling to end the controversial laws.
OVC REPORT- The situation of children in distress is not a special case for one country, Rwanda. She is known around the world. But we recognize that the tragedy occurred in Rwanda in 1994 related to genocide and war has worsened the existing condition because it was dealing with a large number of children orphaned and especially an increase in children Street.
To minimize the social and economic underwent this cohort of children, it was created in 1995 the organization of Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC RWANDA), in order:
- Remove children from the vulnerable state of beggary and despair
- Promote their socio-economic development and culture
The Center for Street Children of Kimisagara, in the city of Kigali has been built for a capacity of 50 children but, given the narrowness of reception facilities for the number of children needing assistance, he been decided to build a Center of bottlenecking in Masaka in the suburb of KABUGA. The Center Masaka should accommodate 200 children, girls and boys and be equipped with modern facilities. In the future, the Center Kimisagara will move to merge with that of Masaka.
1.2. STATEMENT OF NEEDS
The NGO currently has nearly 1,200 orphans of genocide, war and AIDS and 300 children vulnerable. The orphans of the genocide have grown, because currently the average age is 16 years. We recognize, however, a rise of cases of children orphaned by AIDS due to the spread of HIV / AIDS in the most disadvantaged and otherwise vulnerable children.
Indeed, the poverty is over 60% in Rwanda, which causes some left-to-account in the state of chronic poverty. Their children lack basic education, suffer from malnutrition and are characterized by poor health. In short, they grow up in unhealthy environments so they require special assistance. The best way to help children in especially difficult circumstances is to approach them and if possible find them foster families capable of assuming their responsibilities.
They need a healthy and protected in order to exercise their rights. RWANDA OVC decided to take over in center initially limited to 50 people and also if possible to build a reception center for nearly 200 children all genres, for lack of foster care can provide better conditions fulfillment and for exercising their fundamental rights.
1.3.1. Background post genocide
After the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, the number of children / youth in the street have risen due to different reasons: children have lost their parents, others are found only in families, very poor families because of looting and the destruction of their property, unwanted pregnancies.
1.3.2. Enrollment in Rwanda
In Rwanda there are 2 types of schools: Public schools and private schools. The former are generally less expensive (although the school should be free for all).
- Training to primary school: all children are of school age will join the primary school
- Training at school: all children who passed the state exam at the end of primary school can continue school.
- Vocational training: This component applies to children over school age and those who completed primary school, fail the state exam. Others do this type of training choices for their future.
1.3.3. The Maibobo
The street children Maibobo commonly called, are children like so many others despite their precarious situation
- The reasons for this are many
- The leak of family poverty
- The loss of one or both parents
- The dropout due to a lack of financing fees
- Poverty in families
- The orphans had no host families
- Children who do not study, not because they want to but because they lack resources
Children / youth in the street have not only need the means to study or vocational training but also advice to their reintegration into Rwandan society (They put themselves aside as if the Rwandan society was not theirs) .
1.3.4. What is being done at present for these street children?
At present, we can see a decline in the number of street children through various programs MINALOC,MIGEPROF, UNICEF, in collaboration with the various centers.
But we have identified a large number of children, young girls mother who roam the city of Kigali. Most often, they are so tired of having to reintegrate into society.
1.3.5. Economic viability of project beneficiaries
The goal for these young people is autonomy. These only after a general education or vocational integration of the working environment possible and stable. In this phase, emphasis will be on social and economic reintegration of a more sustainable way.
1.3.6. Project Sustainability
Organizational structures, partners and grassroots authorities will be closely associated in the process of reintegration.
In this context also, the project will stimulate and support a forum of elders of different centers of the project, as a structure for dialogue and exchange of experiences on life after the reception centers.
DONATE TODAY TO-
Organization of Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC RWANDA):
TEL: (+250) 78 849 41 48
You can also contact us trough our online form
For the donations, here are the account of OVC Rwanda:
- 040-0207310-54 Rwf
- 040-0208031-96 USD
- 040-0288033-73 Euro
- Banque de Kigali (BK)
- Swift Code: BKIGRWRW
- source http://www.ovc-rwanda.org/
St. Adrian of Canterbury
ABBOT AT CANTERBURY
Feast: January 9
|Baptism of Our Lord- Feast|
Matthew 3: 13 - 17
|13||Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him.|
|14||John would have prevented him, saying, "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?"|
|15||But Jesus answered him, "Let it be so now; for thus it is fitting for us to fulfil all righteousness." Then he consented.|
|16||And when Jesus was baptized, he went up immediately from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and alighting on him;|
|17||and lo, a voice from heaven, saying, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased."|