Sunday, July 17, 2011





RADIO VATICANA REPORT: For the second time in as many weeks, Pope Benedict XVI launched an urgent appeal Sunday for the international community to immediately mobilize itself in aid of the tens of thousands of men, women and in particular the children, hit by famine in the Horn of Africa.

Speaking from the courtyard of his summer residence in Castel Gandolfo following the midday Angelus prayer the Holy Father said : “I am following with deep concern the news from the Horn of Africa, particularly Somalia, stricken by a severe drought and then, in some areas, even by heavy rains that are causing a humanitarian catastrophe. Countless people are fleeing from the famine in search of food and aid. I hope international mobilization grows to send timely relief to our brothers and sisters already sorely tried, among which there are so many children. May our solidarity and the concrete support to all people of good will not fail these suffering people. "

The Pope’s words echoed around the tiny enclosed courtyard of the renaissance palace where the Holy Father has been enjoying a period of rest in the cooler climbs of the Alban hills. In fact his only public appointment during the month of July is the Sunday midday Angelus, when pilgrims travel to the hill top village to join him in prayer.

Reflecting on the Sunday Gospel – taken from Mathew chapter 13 – Pope Benedict XVI explained Jesus’ parable of the Kingdom: “Jesus compares the Kingdom of heaven to a wheat field, to help us understand that something small and hidden is sown within us, which, however, has an irrepressible life force. Despite all obstacles, the seed will grow and the fruit ripen. This fruit will be good only if the ground of life has been nurtured according to Divine will. Therefore, in the parable of the wheat and the weeds (Mt 13,24-30), Jesus warns us that, after the Master had planted, 'while people slept,' his 'enemy' intervened, sowing weeds. This means that we must be prepared to guard the grace received from the day of baptism, while continuing to nourish faith in the Lord, which prevents evil from taking root. St. Augustine, commenting on this story, notes that 'many are first weeds and then become good wheat' and adds: 'If those, when they are bad, are not tolerated with patience, they will never reach this laudable change' (Quaest. septend. In Ev. sec. Matth., 12, 4: PL 35, 1371). "

He concluded “Psalm 85 confirms this: Lord, you are kind and forgiving, most loving to all who call on you' (verse 5)”. "If so we are children of a great and good Father, we must try to be like Him! This was the purpose that Jesus intended in his preaching when he said to those who listened to him: 'Be perfect just as your heavenly Father is perfect' (Matthew 5:48). Let us turn with confidence to Mary, whom we called yesterday with the title of the Blessed Virgin of Mount Caramel, to help us to faithfully follow Jesus, and so to live as true children of God. "

Finally Pope Benedict greeted the pilgrim groups present this Sunday: "I offer a warm welcome to the English-speaking visitors gathered for this Angelus prayer, including the pilgrims from Meath, Ireland and from Nazareth, the home of Jesus. Today’s Gospel encourages us to let the good seed of God’s word bear fruit in our lives and to trust in his mysterious plan for the growth of the Kingdom. Let us work for an abundant harvest of holiness in the Church and ask to be found among Christ’s righteous ones on the day of judgment. Upon all of you I invoke the Lord’s abundant blessings of joy and peace!"


Doug Barry, co-host of "Life on the Rock", has released a new DVD on St. John Bosco. From the site: Don Bosco was born and lived in Italy during the 19th century. Known as Father, or Don Bosco, his mission in life was to save young souls from destruction. His work began with the founding of the Oratory, a school for young boys. It was to these boys that Don Bosco related numerous supernatural dreams. Now you can see these dreams in action through the powerful storytelling of Doug Barry. These mysterious, life changing messages from heaven are complete with an exceptional music score. "The Dreams Of Don Bosco, Volume 1" not only entertain they teach. This is an excellent tool for classroom, religious education, youth group, RCIA, bible study and prayer group, family viewing and more. Get your copy today! DVD = Approximate length 30 minutes. AVAILABLE FROM: THE DON BOSCO DVD TRAILER HERE!



Agenzia Fides REPORT - Bishop of Rumbek, Monsignor Caesar Mazzolari, died this morning, July 16, at 8 am at the State hospital in Rumbek, where he was hospitalized after the illness that struck him while he was celebrating Mass. According to information released by Cisa agency, Fr. Don Bosco Ochieng, Director of Radio Good News Rumbek, said that the Bishop was concelebrating the morning Mass when, at the beginning of the consecration, he fell on the chair, without any strength, bringing a hand to his chest. With the help of some priests, nuns and faithful attending the Mass, he was taken to the sacristy and then in his room, where he was visited by a doctor and then was taken to hospital, where he died shortly after. (IMAGE SOURCE: RADIO VATICANA)
Mgr. Mazzolari was born in Brescia on February 9, 1937. He entered the Comboni Missionaries, was ordained a priest on March 17, 1962. After a first missionary experience in the United States, among blacks and Mexicans, in 1981 he arrived in Sudan in the diocese of Tombura-Yambio, then in the Archdiocese of Juba, then in the diocese of Rumbek (South Sudan), where he was ordained Bishop on January 6, 1999, by Pope John Paul II. On 9 July he attended the celebrations for the independence of South Sudan.


Japan: seminarians study cooking | Japan Catholic Seminary,cooking workshop

Seminarians preparing lunch
It is a Sunday morning and five apron-clad seminarians are gathered in the kitchen at the Tokyo Campus of the Japan Catholic Seminary. They are about to take part in a recent and rather unusual addition to their curriculum: a cooking workshop. But they cannot start just yet; the teacher has noticed something is missing.

“Where’s the mustard spinach?” she asks. “I’ll go buy some!” says one eager student and scurries from the room.

These students have only just started seminary life. As part of their focus on “communal life and service” in their first term, they are required to attend cooking workshops like this one.

Their instructor is Ms. Akiko Kojima, a registered dietician and parishioner of Seijo Church in Tokyo. Sister Kazumi Ozaki of the Society of Helpers, who has been tasked with the formation of these students, is also here to lend a hand. Today’s menu is Chinese sweet and sour pork, a Korean disk of seasoned vegetables called namul, soup and dessert.

The seminarians set to work, occasionally asking questions and helping each other out when needed. After nearly two hours of diligent work, the food is done. As Ms Kojima turns off the burners on the stove, the students give a cheer.

One of them, Munihiro Noguchi from Tokyo archdiocese, said: “It was pretty difficult, but in the end it’s for our own good. For my pastor at the church I belong to, breakfast is always just toast, and lunch is always just noodles.”

Kazuki Shimohara of Nagasaki archdiocese gives an embarrassed laugh as he admits that his cooking prowess is “just about limited to single-serving instant ramen. The stuff today is great!”

Japanese cooking has some quite distinctive regional variations. Perhaps that is what leads Takanori Toyoda, from Osaka, to say as he eats, “This food seems like it has a Tokyo flavour.”

Sulpician Father Mitsuru Shirahama, who is in charge of the first-year students, said the workshop got started three years ago after someone suggested that the seminarians themselves prepare food at the weekend, when the kitchen staff have a day off.

“It’s good practice,” he added, “because when they are serving at parishes they may sometimes be asked to cook.”

Ms. Kojima uses her knowledge as a dietician to encourage the young men and help them choose a healthy diet. “When you’re living alone, it can be hard to get enough vegetables. But if you do it once, you’ll be able to do it again when the time comes.”

In the second semester, the seminarians will move on to dividing the workload, choosing menus and making the food themselves. “Their cooking skills are still iffy,” Father Shirahama said, “but still, I’m looking forward to it.”


DIOCESE OF MALTA RELEASE: On Wednesday 13th July, 2011, Archbishop Paul Cremona O.P. met the Maltese missionaries at Dar l-Emigrant in Valletta. Those present were welcomed by Mgr. Philip Calleja. Elected Bishop Fr. Emanuel Barbara and Mgr. Archbishop Joseph Spiteri, Apostolic Nunctio in Sri Lanka, were amongst those present on this occasion. A number of 23 priests, religious, and lay persons shared their missionary experiences which varied from working at the Seminaries, working with persons with special needs, and also those giving their service to promote humanitarian programmes.All of these experiences happen in countries such as Brazil, Canada, Cuba, India, Jerusalem, Kenya, Pakistan, Peru, Pharaoh Islands, and Sri Lanka.

In his final message, the Archbishop outlined two important points regarding this Apostolic ministry: these missionaries are following the last words of Jesus in the Gospel, the mandate Jesus gives to his Apostles was to “go and preach to all nations”; the second point, was about the different facets of this mandate that these missionaries are practising . All this reflects the Universal mission of the Church and the generosity which the Church in Malta has always been showing.

The Archbishop thanked all those involved in such a ministry. BY: SARAH GRECH



Sr Giovanni Farquar of the Sydney Archdiocese
welcoming guests

Nearly 150 people from the three Abrahamic faiths got together last Sunday to listen to guests speakers and discuss how Abraham can speak to us today.

It was the 9th Annual Abraham Conference and as in previous years the keynote speaker and respondents were all distinguished scholars.

This year Rev Dr Daniel Madigan SJ was the keynote speaker with his paper "Abraham, His Family and the Baggage We Make Them Carry".

Rev Dr Madigan is an Australian Jesuit priest who is now Director of Graduate Studies at Georgetown University's Department of Theology in the U.S.

Rabbi Paul Jacobson, who along with the others present also believes in the importance of interfaith dialogue and regularly participates on panel discussions with representatives of other faiths, was the Jewish respondent.

And speaking for the Muslim faith was Professor Zeki Saritoprak, founder and former President of the Rumi Forum for Interfaith Dialogue in Washinghton, D.C. and the Nursi Chair in Islamic Studies at John Carroll University.

In introducing his paper, Rev Dr Daniel Madigan said when Jews, Muslims and Christians gather in different parts of the world these days, we are increasingly focussing on Abraham.

Professor Zeki Saritoprak, Rabbi Paul Jacobson
and Rev Dr Daniel Madigan

"We live in hope that this figure in faith, who holds an important place in each of our traditions, will provide us with a way forward in mutual understanding and honest dialogue with one another," he said.

"Abraham is the cornerstone of our strategy for leaving behind past polemics and moving ahead in mutual respect. We like to say that he is the father of all those who believe in one God."

He went onto say that this exploration of our traditions, like all repentance, is somewhat embarrassing and perhaps a little painful, but we are all in this particular glasshouse together, so it is not a case of throwing stones.

In the conclusion of Rabbi Jacobson's response he said that by looking at Abraham's life we come to truly appreciate that Abraham, as a representative of faith in God, had his strengths, and also his shortcomings.

"And perhaps, through all these episodes, we might learn to become more cognisant of our own strengths and shortcomings, the ways in which our respective faiths encourage us to interact peacefully and harmoniously with one another.

"We must unearth the best of what our traditions have to offer, both ourselves, and others for friendship and for mutual, respectful coexistence."

The keynote speaker addressing the conference

Prof Zeki spoke of the detailed account of Abraham in the Qu'ran, one of the elite prophets in Islamic teaching.

"What can we learn from Abraham today?" Prof Zeki asked.

"I would say it is the spiritual strength that Abraham had. I think if we are spiritual, and we become a way of that aspect of Abraham, we will be able to share with our neighbours regardless of their religion, regardless of their ethnicity, we will be able to share with our fellow human beings regardless of anything and I think our planet will be a credible brotherhood."

Following the speakers, the audience had the opportunity to discuss the various talks before submitting some comments.

These comments will be available on this website with links to the Affinity Intercultural Foundation and websites of other faiths represented, to continue further discussion.

The full texts of the keynote speaker and the respondents will also be available.

The Inter-religious Abraham Conference organising committee consisted of Affinity Intercultural Foundation; Columban Centre for Christian-Muslim Relations; NSW Board of Jewish Deputies; United Church Synod of NSW/ACT and the Sydney Catholic Archdiocese.


The Blessed Martyrs of Compiegne

Feast: July 17


Feast Day:July 7
Died:17 July 1794 at the Place du Trône Renversé (modern Place de la Nation) in Paris, France
Beatified:27 May 1906 by Pope Pius X

Guillotined at the Place du Trône Renversé (now called Place de la Nation), Paris, 17 July, 1794. They are the first sufferers under the French Revolution on whom the Holy See has passed judgment, and were solemnly beatified 27 May, 1906. Before their execution they knelt and chanted the "Veni Creator", as at a profession, after which they all renewed aloud their baptismal and religious vows. The novice was executed first and the prioress last. Absolute silence prevailed the whole time that the executions were proceeding. The heads and bodies of the martyrs were interred in a deep sand-pit about thirty feet square in a cemetery at Picpus. As this sand-pit was the receptacle of the bodies of 1298 victims of the Revolution, there seems to be no hope of their relics being recovered. Their names are as follows:

* Madeleine-Claudine Ledoine (Mother Teresa of St. Augustine), prioress, b. in Paris, 22 Sept., 1752, professed 16 or 17 May, 1775;

* Marie-Anne (or Antoinette) Brideau (Mother St. Louis), sub-prioress, b. at Belfort, 7 Dec., 1752, professed 3 Sept, 1771;

* Marie-Anne Piedcourt (Sister of Jesus Crucified), choir-nun, b. 1715, professed 1737; on mounting the scaffold she said "I forgive you as heartily as I wish God to forgive me";

* Anne-Marie-Madeleine Thouret (Sister Charlotte of the Resurrection), sacristan, b. at Mouy, 16 Sept., 1715, professed 19 Aug., 1740, twice sub-prioress in 1764 and 1778;

* Marie-Antoniette or Anne Hanisset (Sister Teresa of the Holy Heart of Mary), b. at Rheims in 1740 or 1742, professed in 1764;

* Marie-Françoise Gabrielle de Croissy (Mother Henriette of Jesus), b. in Paris, 18 June, 1745, professed 22 Feb., 1764, prioress from 1779 to 1785;

* Marie-Gabrielle Trézel (Sister Teresa of St. Ignatius), choir-nun, b. at Compiègne, 4 April, 1743, professed 12 Dec., 1771;

* Rose-Chrétien de la Neuville, widow, choir-nun (Sister Julia Louisa of Jesus), b. at Loreau (or Evreux), in 1741, professed probably in 1777;

* Anne Petras (Sister Mary Henrietta of Providence), choir-nun, b. at Cajarc (Lot), 17 June, 1760, professed 22 Oct., 1786.

* Concerning Sister Euphrasia of the Immaculate Conception accounts vary. Miss Willson says that her name was Marie Claude Cyprienne Brard, and that she was born 12 May, 1736; Pierre, that her name was Catherine Charlotte Brard, and that she was born 7 Sept., 1736. She was born at Bourth, and professed in 1757;

* Marie-Geneviève Meunier (Sister Constance), novice, b. 28 May, 1765, or 1766, at St. Denis, received the habit 16 Dec., 1788. She mounted the scaffold singing "Laudate Dominum". In addition to the above, three lay sisters suffered and two tourières.

The lay sisters are:

* Angélique Roussel (Sister Mary of the Holy Ghost), lay sister, b. at Fresnes, 4 August, 1742, professed 14 May, 1769;

* Marie Dufour (Sister St. Martha), lay sister, b. at Beaune, 1 or 2 Oct., 1742, entered the community in 1772;

* Julie or Juliette Vérolot (Sister St. Francis Xavier), lay sister, b. at Laignes or Lignières, 11 Jan., 1764, professed 12 Jan., 1789.

The two tourières, who were not Carmelites at all, but merely servants of the nunnery were: Catherine and Teresa Soiron, b. respectively on 2 Feb., 1742 and 23 Jan., 1748 at Compiègne, both of whom had been in the service of the community since 1772.

The miracles proved during the process of beatification were

* The cure of Sister Clare of St. Joseph, a Carmelite lay sister of New Orleans, when on the point of death from cancer, in June, 1897;

* The cure of the Abbé Roussarie, of the seminary at Brive, when at the point of death, 7 March, 1897;

* The cure of Sister St. Martha of St. Joseph, a Carmelite lay Sister of Vans, of tuberculosis and an abcess in the right leg, 1 Dec., 1897;

* The cure of Sister St. Michael, a Franciscan of Montmorillon, 9 April, 1898.

Five secondary relics are in the possession of the Benedictines of Stanbrook, Worcestershire.



Wisdom 12: 13, 16 - 19
13For neither is there any god besides thee, whose care is for all men, to whom thou shouldst prove that thou hast not judged unjustly;16For thy strength is the source of righteousness, and thy sovereignty over all causes thee to spare all.17For thou dost show thy strength when men doubt the completeness of thy power, and dost rebuke any insolence among those who know it.18Thou who art sovereign in strength dost judge with mildness, and with great forbearance thou dost govern us; for thou hast power to act whenever thou dost choose.19Through such works thou has taught thy people that the righteous man must be kind, and thou hast filled thy sons with good hope, because thou givest repentance for sins.
Psalms 86: 5 - 6, 9 - 10, 15 - 16
5For thou, O Lord, art good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call on thee.
6Give ear, O LORD, to my prayer; hearken to my cry of supplication.
9All the nations thou hast made shall come and bow down before thee, O Lord, and shall glorify thy name.
10For thou art great and doest wondrous things, thou alone art God.
15But thou, O Lord, art a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
16Turn to me and take pity on me; give thy strength to thy servant, and save the son of thy handmaid.
Romans 8: 26 - 27
26Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words.
27And he who searches the hearts of men knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
Matthew 13: 24 - 43
24Another parable he put before them, saying, "The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field;
25but while men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away.
26So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared also.
27And the servants of the householder came and said to him, `Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then has it weeds?'
28He said to them, `An enemy has done this.' The servants said to him, `Then do you want us to go and gather them?'
29But he said, `No; lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them.
30Let both grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.'"
31Another parable he put before them, saying, "The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed which a man took and sowed in his field;
32it is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is the greatest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches."
33He told them another parable. "The kingdom of heaven is like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened."
34All this Jesus said to the crowds in parables; indeed he said nothing to them without a parable.
35This was to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet: "I will open my mouth in parables, I will utter what has been hidden since the foundation of the world."
36Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples came to him, saying, "Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field."
37He answered, "He who sows the good seed is the Son of man;
38the field is the world, and the good seed means the sons of the kingdom; the weeds are the sons of the evil one,
39and the enemy who sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the close of the age, and the reapers are angels.
40Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the close of the age.
41The Son of man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers,
42and throw them into the furnace of fire; there men will weep and gnash their teeth.
43Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.
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