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Thursday, December 3, 2015

Catholic News World : Thurs. December 3, 2015 - SHARE

2015

Wow Powerful Christmas #Commercial shows why we need to visit Parents SHARE #ViralVideo

The most powerful commercial of the year, if not ever. This was created by a German supermarket chain Edeka (English subs). It has had almost 20 million views in three days. It is about a Grandfather, (Opa) whose family is always too busy to see him. This will make you call your parents/grandparents/relatives/distant cousins right away. And it may cause a few tears. Watch it and SHARE it might just help someone...

#BreakingNews Death Toll at 269 by Flooding in #Chennai #India - Please Pray

Floods immobilize Chennai: at least 188 victims
The floods have lasted for about 17 days, the army has been deployed. Entire neighborhoods in suburbs are flooded. Local witnesses speak of 90 cm of water. The city airport closed, trains suspended. India is among the world’s countries most affected by climate change disasters.

Chennai (AsiaNews / Agencies) – The death toll from  the heavy flooding that is battering the Indian state of Tamil Nadu has risen to 188(update 269). In particular, the city Chennai is plagued by violent floods, where the authorities were forced to deploy the army to help the population. Flights have been canceled and the city airport rail links suspended.

The town is under water, with whole suburbs flooded. Last night the state authorities decided to suspend all flights departing from and arriving to the city airport, after the runways were flooded. About 400 passengers were stranded at the airport, without the possibility of moving. Also the trains were suppressed, with the tracks covered by torrential rains.

According to experts, this is the most violent weather phenomenon of the last 100 years. The city government has asked the help of the army, which was deployed in the most affected areas, especially in the outskirts of Chennai. Even the National Disaster Response Force is helping local people to get to safety.

In addition, the electricity supply was interrupted in 60% of the territory, to prevent short-circuits. Even schools of six districts have suspended all activities for 17 days, that is since the beginning of the storm.

One resident said: "We have not seen rain like this for at least 25-30 years, when the electricity was suspended for a week. You see flooded roads everywhere and the water level in some areas is nearly 90 centimeters. "

The report forecasts that the rains will continue for several more days. According to a recent UN report, India is among the top three countries in the world (together with the US and China) most affected by disasters caused by climate change. These are the most violent floods in 20 years. Shared from Asia News 

Free Catholic Movie : "Grace, Guts and Glory" : Drama of St. Francis Xavier : Stars Karan Kodade

Here is the drama of GRACE, GUTS AND GLORY - The Life of St. Francis Xavier, in English 
FOR AMAZING FREE MOVIES LIKE US ON FACEBOOK NOW
A film on the life of Saint Francis Xavier of Goa (1506-1552), the apostle to India, Indonesia and Japan. A great miracle worker (resurrected people from the dead, communicated after death etc.) He died in China. One of the greatest Catholic saints of all times, whose body remains incorrupt (does not disintegrate) since the 16th century and is kept in the Catholic Cathedral in Goa, India. Saint Francis Xavier was Spanish Jesuit, follower of Saint Ignatius of Loyola. Modern Pope Francis is also Jesuit.

Latest #News of #Vatican Information Service and #PopeFrancis at #HolySee


03-12-2015 - Year XXII - Num. 217 

Summary
- Audience with the prime minister of Samoa: Pacific island states and environmental problems
- To the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples: the Church lives and grows
- “Evangeliario di Misericordia” presented to the Pope
- Audiences
- Other Pontifical Acts
- To the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples: the Church lives and grows
- “Evangeliario di Misericordia” presented to the Pope
- Audiences
- Other Pontifical Acts
- Francis recalls his apostolic trip to Africa and praises missionaries
- The Pope explains the motives and expectations of the Jubilee of Mercy
- Other Pontifical Acts
Audience with the prime minister of Samoa: Pacific island states and environmental problems
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – Today the Holy Father Francis received in audience the prime minister of the Independent State of Samoa, Tuilaepa Lupesoliai Sailele Malielegaoi, who subsequently met with Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, accompanied by Msgr. Antoine Camilleri, under-secretary for Relations with States.
During the cordial discussions, the Parties focused on some aspects of the social and economic life of the country, as well as the valued contribution of the Catholic Church in various sectors of Samoan society and, in particular, in the field of education.
This was followed by an exchange of opinions on the international and regional situation, with special reference to the Conference on climate change currently taking place in Paris, and the environmental problems that some Pacific island states must face.
To the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples: the Church lives and grows
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – Pope Francis received in audience this morning the participants in the plenary assembly of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, which considered the “missio ad gentes” in the light of the Conciliar decree “Ad gentes” and St. John Paul II's encyclical “Redemptoris missio”. In his address to the 160 attendees in the Clementine Hall, the Holy Father referred to his recent apostolic trip to Africa, highlighting the spiritual and pastoral dynamism of the continent's many young Churches, as well as the grave difficulties experienced by a large part of the population.
“I saw that where there is the need, the Church is almost always present to heal the wounds of those most in need, in whom She recognises the afflicted and crucified body of the Lord Jesus. How many works of charity, of human promotion! How many anonymous good Samaritans work every day in the missions!
He emphasised that the Church, by nature evangelising, always starts by auto-evangelisation. “As the Lord Jesus' disciple, she listens to His Word and from this she draws the reasons for that hope that never disappoints, as it is based on the grace of the Holy Spirit. Only in this way is she able to conserve her freshness and apostolic zeal”. As affirmed in the Conciliar decree “Ad gentes”, “it is from the mission of the Son and the mission of the Holy Spirit that she draws her origin, in accordance with the decree of God the Father”. The Pope reiterated, “It is the Church that is at the service of the mission. … It is not the Church who makes the mission, but the mission that makes the Church. Therefore, the mission is not a tool, but rather a starting point and aim”.
In recent months, the Congregation has carried out a survey on the vitality of the young Churches to understand how to make the work of the missio ad gentes more effective, also in view of the ambiguity to which the experience of faith is sometimes exposed today. “The secularised world, indeed, even when it is welcoming towards the Gospel values of love, justice, peace and sobriety, does not show similar openness to the figure of Jesus; it considers Him neither the Messiah nor the Son of God. At most, it considers Him an enlightened man. It therefore separates the message from the Messenger, the gift from the Giver. In this situation of separation, the missio ad gentes serves as a motor and horizon for faith. … The mission, in fact, is a force capable of transforming the Church from within, before transforming the life of peoples and cultures. Each parish thus makes the style of the missio ad gentes its own. In this way, the Holy Spirit will transform those whose faith is based on habit alone into disciples, disaffected disciples into missionaries, bringing them out of their fears and isolation and projecting them in every direction, to the very limits of the world. May the kerygmatic approach to faith, so familiar in the young Churches, have space also for those of a more ancient tradition”.
The Pope recalled that neither Paul nor Barnabas had a missionary dicastery to support them, yet they announced the Word, bringing to life various communities and shedding their blood for the Gospel. “Over time complexities grew and the need arose for a special relationship between the more recently founded Churches and the universal Church. For this reason, four centuries ago, Pope Gregory XV instituted the Congregation 'De Propaganda Fide', which in 1967 changed its name to the 'Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples'. It is clear that in this phase of history, 'mere administration can no longer be enough. Throughout the world, let us be permanently in a state of mission'. … Going forth is innate in our Baptism, and its boundaries are those of the world. Therefore, continue to work so that the spirit of the missio ad gentes may inspire the journey of the Church, so that she may always know how to listen to the cry of the poor and the distant, to meet all and to announce the joy of the Gospel”.
Francis thanked the Congregation for its work in missionary inspiration and cooperation, remarking that “all Churches, if constricted to their own horizons, run the risk of atrophy. The Church lives and grows when outbound, taking the initiative” and going out to the people. “In many paths of the missio ad gentes, the dawn of a new day is already visible, as is shown by the fact that the young Churches know how to give, not only to receive. The first fruits are their willingness to grant their priests to sister Churches of the same nation, the same continent, or to serve Churches in need in other regions of the world. Cooperation is not only along the north-south axis. There is also a movement in the other direction, of giving back the good received from the first missionaries. These too are signs of maturity”.
The Pope concluded by asking all present to pray and work so that the Church may always follow the model of the Acts of the Apostles. “Let us be inspired by the strength of the Gospel and the Holy Spirit; let us come out of our narrow enclosures and emigrate from the territories where we are are at times tempted to close ourselves away”.
“Evangeliario di Misericordia” presented to the Pope
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – This morning in the Hall of Popes, the Evangeliario di Misericordia” was presented to the Holy Father. An initiative by the Italian Episcopal Conference (CEI), it is a publication of the four Gospels illustrated with mosaics by the Slovenian artist and Jesuit Maro Ivan Rupnik, who produced the mosaics for the Redemptoris Mater chapel in the Vatican and for the Basilica of Fatima. Intended to commemorate the beginning of the Jubilee of Mercy, the publication also includes a series of introductory texts by the Fr. Alessandro Amapani. The prologue is by Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelisation.
Audiences
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father received in audience:
- Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith;
- Bishop David Douglas Crosby, O.M.I., of Hamilton, Canada, president of the Episcopal Conference of Catholic Bishops of Canada, accompanied by Bishop Lionel Gendron, P.S.S., of Saint-Jean-Longueuil, deputy president, and Msgr. Frank Leo, C.S.S., general secretary.
Other Pontifical Acts
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – The Holy Father has:
- accepted the resignation from the office of auxiliary of the diocese of Down and Connor, Ireland, presented by Bishop Anthony J. Farquhar, upon reaching the age limit.
- erected the new diocese of Guasdualito (area 35,184, population 200,000, priests 13, religious 9) in Venezuela, with territory taken from the dioceses of San Fernando de Apure and Barinas, making it a suffragan of the metropolitan metropolis of Merida.
- appointed Fr. Modesto Gonzalez Perez, S.B.D., as the first bishop of the new diocese of Guasdualito. The bishop-elect was born in 1959 in San Antonio de los Alpes, Venezuela, gave his religious vows in 1983 and was ordained a priest in 1986. He holds a licentiate in education from the Universidad Simon Rodriguez in Caracas and in pastoral theology from the Pontifical University of Salamanca, Spain. He has served in a number of pastoral roles, including parish vicar, bursar, parish priest, provincial counsellor and local superior. He is currently director of the Don Bosco agricultural center in Molinete, in the archdiocese of Maracaibo.
To the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples: the Church lives and grows
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – Pope Francis received in audience this morning the participants in the plenary assembly of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, which considered the “missio ad gentes” in the light of the Conciliar decree “Ad gentes” and St. John Paul II's encyclical “Redemptoris missio”. In his address to the 160 attendees in the Clementine Hall, the Holy Father referred to his recent apostolic trip to Africa, highlighting the spiritual and pastoral dynamism of the continent's many young Churches, as well as the grave difficulties experienced by a large part of the population.
“I saw that where there is the need, the Church is almost always present to heal the wounds of those most in need, in whom She recognises the afflicted and crucified body of the Lord Jesus. How many works of charity, of human promotion! How many anonymous good Samaritans work every day in the missions!
He emphasised that the Church, by nature evangelising, always starts by auto-evangelisation. “As the Lord Jesus' disciple, she listens to His Word and from this she draws the reasons for that hope that never disappoints, as it is based on the grace of the Holy Spirit. Only in this way is she able to conserve her freshness and apostolic zeal”. As affirmed in the Conciliar decree “Ad gentes”, “it is from the mission of the Son and the mission of the Holy Spirit that she draws her origin, in accordance with the decree of God the Father”. The Pope reiterated, “It is the Church that is at the service of the mission. … It is not the Church who makes the mission, but the mission that makes the Church. Therefore, the mission is not a tool, but rather a starting point and aim”.
In recent months, the Congregation has carried out a survey on the vitality of the young Churches to understand how to make the work of the missio ad gentes more effective, also in view of the ambiguity to which the experience of faith is sometimes exposed today. “The secularised world, indeed, even when it is welcoming towards the Gospel values of love, justice, peace and sobriety, does not show similar openness to the figure of Jesus; it considers Him neither the Messiah nor the Son of God. At most, it considers Him an enlightened man. It therefore separates the message from the Messenger, the gift from the Giver. In this situation of separation, the missio ad gentes serves as a motor and horizon for faith. … The mission, in fact, is a force capable of transforming the Church from within, before transforming the life of peoples and cultures. Each parish thus makes the style of the missio ad gentes its own. In this way, the Holy Spirit will transform those whose faith is based on habit alone into disciples, disaffected disciples into missionaries, bringing them out of their fears and isolation and projecting them in every direction, to the very limits of the world. May the kerygmatic approach to faith, so familiar in the young Churches, have space also for those of a more ancient tradition”.
The Pope recalled that neither Paul nor Barnabas had a missionary dicastery to support them, yet they announced the Word, bringing to life various communities and shedding their blood for the Gospel. “Over time complexities grew and the need arose for a special relationship between the more recently founded Churches and the universal Church. For this reason, four centuries ago, Pope Gregory XV instituted the Congregation 'De Propaganda Fide', which in 1967 changed its name to the 'Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples'. It is clear that in this phase of history, 'mere administration can no longer be enough. Throughout the world, let us be permanently in a state of mission'. … Going forth is innate in our Baptism, and its boundaries are those of the world. Therefore, continue to work so that the spirit of the missio ad gentes may inspire the journey of the Church, so that she may always know how to listen to the cry of the poor and the distant, to meet all and to announce the joy of the Gospel”.
Francis thanked the Congregation for its work in missionary inspiration and cooperation, remarking that “all Churches, if constricted to their own horizons, run the risk of atrophy. The Church lives and grows when outbound, taking the initiative” and going out to the people. “In many paths of the missio ad gentes, the dawn of a new day is already visible, as is shown by the fact that the young Churches know how to give, not only to receive. The first fruits are their willingness to grant their priests to sister Churches of the same nation, the same continent, or to serve Churches in need in other regions of the world. Cooperation is not only along the north-south axis. There is also a movement in the other direction, of giving back the good received from the first missionaries. These too are signs of maturity”.
The Pope concluded by asking all present to pray and work so that the Church may always follow the model of the Acts of the Apostles. “Let us be inspired by the strength of the Gospel and the Holy Spirit; let us come out of our narrow enclosures and emigrate from the territories where we are are at times tempted to close ourselves away”.
“Evangeliario di Misericordia” presented to the Pope
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – This morning in the Hall of Popes, the Evangeliario di Misericordia” was presented to the Holy Father. An initiative by the Italian Episcopal Conference (CEI), it is a publication of the four Gospels illustrated with mosaics by the Slovenian artist and Jesuit Maro Ivan Rupnik, who produced the mosaics for the Redemptoris Mater chapel in the Vatican and for the Basilica of Fatima. Intended to commemorate the beginning of the Jubilee of Mercy, the publication also includes a series of introductory texts by the Fr. Alessandro Amapani. The prologue is by Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelisation.
Audiences
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father received in audience:
- Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith;
- Bishop David Douglas Crosby, O.M.I., of Hamilton, Canada, president of the Episcopal Conference of Catholic Bishops of Canada, accompanied by Bishop Lionel Gendron, P.S.S., of Saint-Jean-Longueuil, deputy president, and Msgr. Frank Leo, C.S.S., general secretary.
Other Pontifical Acts
Vatican City, 3 December 2015 (VIS) – The Holy Father has:
- accepted the resignation from the office of auxiliary of the diocese of Down and Connor, Ireland, presented by Bishop Anthony J. Farquhar, upon reaching the age limit.
- erected the new diocese of Guasdualito (area 35,184, population 200,000, priests 13, religious 9) in Venezuela, with territory taken from the dioceses of San Fernando de Apure and Barinas, making it a suffragan of the metropolitan metropolis of Merida.
- appointed Fr. Modesto Gonzalez Perez, S.B.D., as the first bishop of the new diocese of Guasdualito. The bishop-elect was born in 1959 in San Antonio de los Alpes, Venezuela, gave his religious vows in 1983 and was ordained a priest in 1986. He holds a licentiate in education from the Universidad Simon Rodriguez in Caracas and in pastoral theology from the Pontifical University of Salamanca, Spain. He has served in a number of pastoral roles, including parish vicar, bursar, parish priest, provincial counsellor and local superior. He is currently director of the Don Bosco agricultural centre in Molinete, in the archdiocese of Maracaibo.
02-12-2015 - Year XXII - Num. 216 

Francis recalls his apostolic trip to Africa and praises missionaries
Vatican City, 2 December 2015 (VIS) – The catechesis of today's Wednesday general audience was dedicated to the Holy Father's apostolic trip to Kenya, Uganda and the Central African Republic from 25 to 30 November. “How beautiful Africa is!” he said, before explaining the details of the trip to the thousands of faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square.
The first country he visited, Kenya, “is a country that represents very well the global challenge of our time: protecting creation while reforming the model of development, so that it may be equitable, inclusive and sustainable”, he said. “All this is reflected in Nairobi, the largest city in East Africa, where wealth and poverty coexist. But this is a scandal! Not only in Africa: even here, everywhere. The coexistence of wealth and poverty is a scandal, it brings shame upon humanity”.
 The Pope recalled that on many the occasions he encouraged Kenyans to cherish the great wealth of their country: their natural and spiritual wealth, made up of the resources of the land, the new generations and the values that form the wisdom of the people. In this context, so dramatically relevant today, I had the joy of bringing the Jesus' Word of hope: be firm in faith, do not be afraid. This was the motto of the visit. A word that is lived every day by many humble and simple people, with noble dignity; a word that was demonstrated tragically and heroically by the young people of the University of Garissa, killed on 2 April because they were Christians. Their blood is the seed of peace and fraternity for Kenya, for Africa, and for the whole world”.
In Uganda, the second country, the fiftieth anniversary of the canonisation of the nation's martyrs by Blessed Paul VI set the tone for the visit. “For this, the motto was, 'You will be my witnesses'. … The entire visit to Uganda took place in the fervour of witness animated by the Holy Spirit. Witness in the explicit sense of the service of catechists … the witness of charity … that involves many communities and associations in service to the poorest, the disabled, and the sick. There was witness of the young who, in spite of difficulties, safeguard the gift of hope and seek to live according to the Gospel and not according to the world, thus going against the grain. There was the witness of the priests and consecrated persons who day by day renew their total 'yes' to Christ and devote themselves with joy to the service of God's holy people. … All this multiform witness, inspired by the Holy Spirit, is a leaven for all society, as is shown by the effective work carried out in Uganda in the battle against AIDS and in the welcome to refugees”.
The third stage in the Pope's trip was the Central African Republic, the geographical heart of the continent, the heart of Africa. “This visit was in reality the first in my intentions, as it is a country that is trying to come out of a very difficult period, of violent conflicts and great suffering among the population. For this reason I wanted to open there, in Bangui, a week ahead of time, the Holy Door of the Jubilee of Mercy, as a sign of faith and hope for the people, and symbolically for all the African peoples who are most in need of redemption and consolation.”
Christ's invitation to His disciples – to go over to the other side – was the theme of this leg of the journey. “Passing to the other side, in the civil sense, means leaving behind war, divisions and poverty, and choosing peace, reconciliation, development. But this presupposes a 'passage' that takes place in the conscience, in the attitudes and intentions of the people. And at this level, the contribution of religious communities is decisive. For this reason I met with the Evangelical and the Muslim communities, sharing in prayer and commitment to peace. … And finally, in the final Mass in the Bangui stadium … we renewed our commitment to following Jesus, our hope, our peace, the face of Divine Mercy. This final Mass was marvellous: it was full of young people, a stadium full of the young! Half the population of the Central African Republic is less than eighteen year old; a promise for the future”.
The Pope also spoke about missionaries, “the men and women who left their homeland, when they were young, leading a life of work, at times sleeping on the ground”. Francis mentioned that when he was in Bangui he met an Italian religious sister aged 81, who had been in Africa since she was 24, and had come to Bangui from her home in nearby Congo by canoe, accompanied by a child. “This is how missionaries are: brave”, he said. She was a nurse who then became a midwife, and had delivered 3,280 babies. “All a life, spent for life, for the life of others. And there are many more like her, many: nuns, priests, men and women religious who spend their life proclaiming Jesus.”
“I would like to say a word to the young”, he concluded. “Think about what you do with your lives. Think about that religious sister and the many others like her, who have given their lives, and so many others like her have died there. Being a missionary is not about proselytism: she told me that Muslim women came to her because they knew that religious sisters were good nurses who cure well, without giving catechesis to convert them! Bearing witness: then offering catechesis to those who want it. Witness is the great heroic missionary act of the Church. Announcing Jesus Christ with your own life. I ask the young: think about what you want to do with your life. It is the moment to think and ask the Lord to let you hear His will. But do not exclude, please, this possibility of becoming a missionary, to take love, humanity and faith to other countries. Not to proselytise: no. Those who do that are seeking something else. Faith is preached first in witness and then in words. Slowly”.
The Pope explains the motives and expectations of the Jubilee of Mercy
Vatican City, 2 December 2015 (VIS) – The Italian magazine “Credere” today published an interview with Pope Francis ahead of the imminent opening of the Jubilee Year of Mercy, in which the Holy Father explains the motives and expectations of this convocation. The following are extensive extracts from the interview:
“The theme of mercy has been strongly accentuated in the life of the Church, starting with Pope Paul VI. John Paul II underlined it firmly with Dives in Misericordia, the canonisation of St. Faustina and the institution of the feast of Divine Mercy on the Octave of Easter. In line with this, I felt that it was as if it was the Lord's wish to show His mercy to humanity. It was not something that came to my mind, but rather the relatively recent renewal of a tradition that has however always existed. … It is obvious that today's world is in need of mercy and compassion, or rather of the capacity for empathy. We are accustomed to bad news, cruel news and the worst atrocities that offend the name and the life of God. The world needs to discover that God is the Father, that there is mercy, that cruelty is not the way, that condemnation is not the way, because it is the Church herself who at times takes a hard line, and falls into the temptation to follow a hard line and to underline moral rules only; many people are excluded. The image of the Church as a field hospital after a battle comes to mind here: it is the truth, so many people are injured and destroyed! … I believe that this is the time for mercy. We are all sinners, all of us carry inner burdens. I felt that Jesus wanted to open the door to His heart, that the Father wants to show us his innate mercy, and for this reason he sends us the Spirit. … It is the year of reconciliation. On the one hand we see the weapons trade … the murder of innocent people in the cruellest ways possible, the exploitation of people, of children. There is currently a form of sacrilege against humanity, because man is sacred, he is the image of the living God. And the Father says, 'stop and come to me'”.
In response to the second question on the importance of divine mercy in the life of Pope Francis, who has repeatedly affirmed his awareness of being a sinner, he says:
“I am a sinner … I am sure of this. I am a sinner whom the Lord looked upon with mercy. I am, as I said to detainees in Bolivia, a forgiven man. … I still make mistakes and commit sins, and I confess every fifteen or twenty days. And if I confess it is because I need to feel that God's mercy is still upon me”. Francis recalled that he felt this sensation in a particular way on 21 September 1953, when he felt the need to enter a church and confess to a priest he did not know, and from then his life was changed; he decided to become a priest and his confessor, who was suffering from leukaemia, accompanied him for a year. “He died the following year”, said the Pope. “After the funeral I cried bitterly, I felt totally lost, as if with the fear that God had abandoned me. This was the moment in which I came across God's mercy, and it is closely linked to my episcopal motto: 21 September is the feast day of St. Matthew, and the Venerable Bede, when speaking of the conversion of St. Matthew, says that Jesus looked at him 'miserando atque eligendo'. … The literal translation would be 'pitying and choosing'”.
“Can the Jubilee of Mercy be an opportunity to rediscover God's 'maternity'? Is there an almost 'feminine' aspect of the Church that must be valued?” is the third question.
“Yes”, the Holy Father replies. “God Himself affirms this when He says in the Book of Isaiah that a mother could perhaps forget her child, even a mother can forget, but 'I will never forsake you'. Here we see the maternal dimension of God. Not everyone understands when we speak about God's maternity, it is not part of 'popular' language – in the good sense of the word – and may seem rather elitist; for this reason I prefer to speak about the tenderness, typical of a mother, God's tenderness that comes from his innate paternity. God is both father and mother”.
In response to a question on whether the discovery of a more merciful and emotional God, Who is moved to tenderness for mankind, should lead to a change of attitude towards others, Francis says: “Discovering this leads us to have a more tolerant, more patient, more tender attitude. In 1994 during the Synod, in a group meeting, I said that it was necessary to begin a revolution of tenderness … and I continue to say that today the revolution is that of tenderness, because justice derives from this. … The revolution of tenderness is what we must cultivate today as the fruit of this year of mercy: God's tenderness towards each one of us. Each one of us must say, 'I am a wretch, but God loves me as I am; so, I must love others in the same way'”.
The journalist recalls St. John XXIII's famous “Sermon to the moon”, in which greeting the faithful one night, he told them to give a caress to their children. “This image became an image of the Church's tenderness. In what way does the theme of mercy help our Christian communities to convert and renew themselves?”
“When I see the sick, the elderly, the caress comes to me spontaneously. … The caress is a gesture that can be interpreted ambiguously, but it the first gesture that a mother and father offer a newborn child, this gesture that says 'I love you, I wish well to you'”.
Finally, “ is there a gesture you intend to make during the Jubilee to show God's mercy?”
“There will be many gestures, but one Friday each month I will make a different gesture”, the Holy Father concludes.
Other Pontifical Acts
Vatican City, 2 December 2015 (VIS) – The Holy Father has:
- appointed Msgr. Rodolfo Luis Weber, prelate of Cristalandia, Brazil, as metropolitan archbishop of Passo Fundo (area 12,000, population 550,000, Catholics 436,000, priests 142, religious 543), Brazil.
- accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Santo Amaro, Brazil, presented by Bishop Fernando Antonio Figueiredo, O.F.M., upon reaching the age limit. He succeeded by Bishop Giuseppe Negri, P.I.M.E., coadjutor of the same diocese.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Thurs. December 3, 2015


Memorial of Saint Francis Xavier, Priest
Lectionary: 178


Reading 1IS 26:1-6

On that day they will sing this song in the land of Judah:

“A strong city have we;
he sets up walls and ramparts to protect us.
Open up the gates
to let in a nation that is just,
one that keeps faith.
A nation of firm purpose you keep in peace;
in peace, for its trust in you.”

Trust in the LORD forever!
For the LORD is an eternal Rock.
He humbles those in high places,
and the lofty city he brings down;
He tumbles it to the ground,
levels it with the dust.
It is trampled underfoot by the needy,
by the footsteps of the poor.

Responsorial PsalmPS 118:1 AND 8-9, 19-21, 25-27A

R. (26a) Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his mercy endures forever.
It is better to take refuge in the LORD
than to trust in man.
It is better to take refuge in the LORD
than to trust in princes.
R. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Open to me the gates of justice;
I will enter them and give thanks to the LORD.
This gate is the LORD’s;
the just shall enter it.
I will give thanks to you, for you have answered me
and have been my savior.
R. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
O LORD, grant salvation!
O LORD, grant prosperity!
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD;
we bless you from the house of the LORD.
The LORD is God, and he has given us light.
R. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.

Alleluia IS 55:6

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Seek the LORD while he may be found;
call him while he is near.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMT 7:21, 24-27

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’
will enter the Kingdom of heaven,
but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them
will be like a wise man who built his house on rock.
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house.
But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock.
And everyone who listens to these words of mine
but does not act on them
will be like a fool who built his house on sand.
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house.
And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”

Saint December 3 : St. Francis Xavier Patron of Missionaries; Precious Blood; Navigators; missions; plague

St. Francis Xavier
JESUIT PRIEST AND GREAT MISSIONARY
Feast: December 3


Information:
Feast Day:December 3
Born:April 7, 1506, Javier, Navarre
Died:December 3, 1552, China
Canonized:March 12, 1622 by Gregory XV
Patron of:African missions; Apostleship of Prayer; Australia; Bombay, India; China; East Indies; Fathers of the Precious Blood; foreign missions; Goa India; India; Tokyo, Japan; missionaries; Missioners of the Precious Blood; navigators; parish missions; plague epidemics; Propagation of the Faith

Born in the Castle of Xavier near Sanguesa, in Navarre, 7 April, 1506; died on the Island of Sancian near the coast of China, 2 December, 1552. In 1525, having completed a preliminary course of studies in his own country, Francis Xavier went to Paris, where he entered the college de Sainte-Barbe. Here he met the Savoyard, Pierre Favre, and a warm personal friendship sprang up between them. It was at this same college that St. Ignatius Loyola, who was already planning the foundation of the Society of Jesus, resided for a time as a guest in 1529. He soon won the confidence of the two young men; first Favre and later Xavier offered themselves with him in the formation of the Society. Four others, Lainez, Salmeron, Rodriguez, and Bobadilla, having joined them, the seven made the famous vow of Montmartre, 15 Aug., 1534.
After completing his studies in Paris and filling the post of teacher there for some time, Xavier left the city with his companions 15 November, 1536, and turned his steps to Venice, where he displayed zeal and charity in attending the sick in the hospitals. On 24 June, 1537, he received Holy orders with St. Ignatius. The following year he went to Rome, and after doing apostolic work there for some months, during the spring of 1539 he took part in the conferences which St. Ignatius held with his companions to prepare for the definitive foundation of the Society of Jesus. The order was approved verbally 3 September, and before the written approbation was secured, which was not until a year later, Xavier was appointed , at the earnest solicitation of the John III, King of Portugal, to evangelize the people of the East Indies. He left Rome 16 March, 1540, and reached Lisbon about June. Here he remained nine months, giving many admirable examples of apostolic zeal.
On 7 April, 1541, he embarked in a sailing vessel for India, and after a tedious and dangerous voyage landed at Goa, 6 May, 1542. The first five months he spent in preaching and ministering to the sick in the hospitals. He would go through the streets ringing a little bell and inviting the children to hear the word of God. When he had gathered a number, he would take them to a certain church and would there explain the catechism to them. About October, 1542, he started for the pearl fisheries of the extreme southern coast of the peninsula, desirous of restoring Christianity which, although introduced years before, had almost disappeared on account of the lack of priests. He devoted almost three years to the work of preaching to the people of Western India, converting many, and reaching in his journeys even the Island of Ceylon. Many were the difficulties and hardships which Xavier had to encounter at this time, sometimes on account of the cruel persecutions which some of the petty kings of the country carried on against the neophytes, and again because the Portuguese soldiers, far from seconding the work of the saint, retarded it by their bad example and vicious habits.
In the spring of 1545 Xavier started for Malacca. He laboured there for the last months of that year, and although he reaped an abundant spiritual harvest, he was not able to root out certain abuses, and was conscious that many sinners had resisted his efforts to bring them back to God. About January, 1546, Xavier left Malacca and went to Molucca Islands, where the Portuguese had some settlements, and for a year and a half he preached the Gospel to the inhabitants of Amboyna, Ternate, Baranura, and other lesser islands which it has been difficult to identify. It is claimed by some that during this expedition he landed on the island of Mindanao, and for this reason St. Francis Xavier has been called the first Apostle of the Philippines. But although this statement is made by some writers of the seventeenth century, and in the Bull of canonization issued in 1623, it is said that he preached the Gospel in Mindanao, up to the present time it has not been proved absolutely that St. Francis Xavier ever landed in the Philippines.
By July, 1547, he was again in Malacca. Here he met a Japanese called Anger (Han-Sir), from whom he obtained much information about Japan. His zeal was at once aroused by the idea of introducing Christanity into Japan, but for the time being the affairs of the Society demanded his presence at Goa, whither he went, taking Anger with him. During the six years that Xavier had been working among the infidels, other Jesuit missionaries had arrived at Goa, sent from Europe by St. Ignatius; moreover some who had been born in the country had been received into the Society. In 1548 Xavier sent these missionaries to the principal centres of India, where he had established missions, so that the work might be preserved and continued. He also established a novitiate and house of studies, and having received into the Society Father Cosme de Torres, a Spanish priest whom he had met in the Maluccas, he started with him and Brother Juan Fernandez for Japan towards the end of June, 1549. The Japanese Anger, who had been baptized at Goa and given the name of Pablo de Santa Fe, accompanied them.
They landed at the city of Kagoshima in Japan, 15 Aug., 1549. The entire first year was devoted to learning the Japanese language and translating into Japanese, with the help of Pablo de Santa Fe, the principal articles of faith and short treatises which were to be employed in preaching and catechizing. When he was able to express himself, Xavier began preaching and made some converts, but these aroused the ill will of the bonzes, who had him banished from the city. Leaving Kagoshima about August, 1550, he penetrated to the centre of Japan, and preached the Gospel in some of the cities of southern Japan. Towards the end of that year he reached Meaco, then the principal city of Japan, but he was unable to make any headway here because of the dissensions the rending the country. He retraced his steps to the centre of Japan, and during 1551 preached in some important cities, forming the nucleus of several Christian communities, which in time increased with extraordinary rapidity.
After working about two years and a half in Japan he left this mission in charge of Father Cosme de Torres and Brother Juan Fernandez, and returned to Goa, arriving there at the beginning of 1552. Here domestic troubles awaited him. Certain disagreements between the superior who had been left in charge of the missions, and the rector of the college, had to be adjusted. This, however, being arranged, Xavier turned his thoughts to China, and began to plan an expedition there. During his stay in Japan he had heard much of the Celestial Empire, and though he probably had not formed a proper estimate of his extent and greatness, he nevertheless understood how wide a field it afforded for the spread of the light of the Gospel. With the help of friends he arranged a commission or embassy the Sovereign of China, obtained from the Viceroy of India the appointment of ambassador, and in April, 1552, he left Goa. At Malacca the party encountered difficulties because the influential Portuguese disapproved of the expedition, but Xavier knew how to overcome this opposition, and in the autumn he arrived in a Portuguese vessel at the small island of Sancian near the coast of China. While planning the best means for reaching the mainland, he was taken ill, and as the movement of the vessel seemed to aggravate his condition, he was removed to the land, where a rude hut had been built to shelter him. In these wretched surroundings he breathed his last.
It is truly a matter of wonder that one man in the short space of ten years (6 May, 1542-2 December, 1552) could have visited so many countries, traversed so many seas, preached the Gospel to so many nations, and converted so many infidels. The incomparable apostolic zeal which animated him, and the stupendous miracles which God wrought through him, explain this marvel, which has no equal elsewhere. The list of the principal miracles may be found in the Bull of canonization. St. Francis Xavier is considered the greatest missionary since the time of the Apostles, and the zeal he displayed, the wonderful miracles he performed, and the great number of souls he brought to the light of true Faith, entitle him to this distinction. He was canonized with St. Ignatius in 1622, although on account of the death of Gregory XV, the Bull of canonization was not published until the following year.
The body of the saint is still enshrined at Goa in the church which formerly belonged to the Society. In 1614 by order of Claudius Acquaviva, General of the Society of Jesus, the right arm was severed at the elbow and conveyed to Rome, where the present altar was erected to receive it in the church of the Gesu.

http://www.ewtn.com/saintsHoly/saints/F/stfrancisxavier.asp

#BreakingNews Shooting in #California with 14 Dead and Injured at Home for Disabled - Please PRAY


There was a shooting at facility for people with developmental disabilities in San Bernardino, Calif.,  14 people were killed and at least 17 injured. The police have The attackers carried long guns. "They came prepared to do what they did, as if they were on a mission," police told reporters. The attack took place in a conference area where the San Bernardino County department of public health was holding a banquet, according to reports.  The incident began around 11 a.m. PT on Wednesday when police received a call about an "active shooter". The centre is 100 kilometres east of Los Angeles. Terry Petit said his daughter works at the centre, and he got a text from her saying: "People shot. In the office waiting for cops. Pray for us. I am locked in an office." 
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