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Thursday, June 2, 2016

Catholic News World : Thursday June 2, 2016 - SHARE

, 2016

#PopeFrancis June #PrayerIntention and New Video with FULL TEXT to SHARE


The full text of the Pope’s Video is below
In our cities the elderly and sick are neglected. Can we ignore it? Our cities should be characterized above all by solidarity, which entails not only giving to the needy , but also taking responsibility for one another and fostering a culture of encounter. Will you join me in my prayer? That the aged, marginalized, and those who have no one may find–even within the huge cities of the world–opportunities for encounter and solidarity.
June Prayer Intentions of Pope Francis
Universal: Human Solidarity
That the aged, marginalized, and those who have no one may find–even within the huge cities of the world–opportunities for encounter and solidarity.
EvangelizationSeminarians and Novices
That seminarians and men and women entering religious life may have mentors who live the joy of the Gospel and prepare them wisely for their mission.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Thurs. June 2, 2016


Thursday in the Ninth Week of Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 356


Reading 12 TM 2:8-15

Beloved:
Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of David:
such is my Gospel, for which I am suffering,
even to the point of chains, like a criminal.
But the word of God is not chained.
Therefore, I bear with everything for the sake of those who are chosen,
so that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus,
together with eternal glory.
This saying is trustworthy:

If we have died with him
we shall also live with him;
if we persevere
we shall also reign with him.
But if we deny him
he will deny us.
If we are unfaithful
he remains faithful,
for he cannot deny himself.

Remind people of these things
and charge them before God to stop disputing about words.
This serves no useful purpose since it harms those who listen.
Be eager to present yourself as acceptable to God,
a workman who causes no disgrace,
imparting the word of truth without deviation.

Responsorial PsalmPS 25:4-5AB, 8-9, 10 AND 14

R. (4) Teach me your ways, O Lord.
Your ways, O LORD, make known to me;
teach me your paths,
Guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my savior.
R. Teach me your ways, O Lord.
Good and upright is the LORD;
thus he shows sinners the way.
He guides the humble to justice,
he teaches the humble his way.
R. Teach me your ways, O Lord.
All the paths of the LORD are kindness and constancy
toward those who keep his covenant and his decrees.
The friendship of the LORD is with those who fear him,
and his covenant, for their instruction.
R. Teach me your ways, O Lord.

AlleluiaSEE 2 TM 1:10

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Our Savior Jesus Christ has destroyed death
and brought life to light through the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 12:28-34

One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him,
“Which is the first of all the commandments?”
Jesus replied, “The first is this:
Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is Lord alone!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, with all your mind,
and with all your strength.

The second is this:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
There is no other commandment greater than these.”
The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher.
You are right in saying,
He is One and there is no other than he.
And to love him with all your heart,
with all your understanding,
with all your strength,
and to love your neighbor as yourself

is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding,
he said to him, “You are not far from the Kingdom of God.”
And no one dared to ask him any more questions.

#Alpha has New Film Series for Global use in Evangelization


ALPHA LAUNCHES THE NEW ALPHA FILM SERIES GLOBALLY The completely re-­‐imagined version of the widely successful Alpha Course WATERLOO, Ontario – Canadian churches have consistently identified a clear gap in resources to communicate the timeless, transformational truth of the Gospel to a changing culture and new generations.. In response, on April 14th, 2016 Alpha Canada will participate in the global release of the brand new Alpha Film Series, with 16 new, 30-­‐minute, documentary-­‐style episodes. This series will help churches in Canada empower their people to live out their baptismal call. With 29 million people globally having already experienced Alpha, the Alpha Film Series will engage a broadly global and multicultural audience while covering the traditional Alpha content such as: Who is Jesus?, How can we have faith?, Why and how do I pray?, How does God guide us?, and Who is the Holy Spirit? It features inspiring stories and interviews using interactive cinematography, as well as visual illustrations and motion graphics. These interviews and stories will feature contributors with various backgrounds and experiences including: • Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, Archbishop of Vienna. • Father Raniero Cantalamessa, Preacher to the Papal Household. • Bear Grylls, world-­‐renowned adventurer, writer and television presenter. • Julia Immonen, Sky Sports News presenter and double Guinness World Record Atlantic Ocean rower. • Ugo Monye, former English international rugby union player. • Jackie Pullinger, one of the world's best-­‐known missionaries, based in Hong Kong. • Jose Henriquez Gonzalez, one of the thirty-­‐three miners trapped for sixty-­‐nine days at the San Jose mine in Chile. • Alister McGrath, professor of science and religion at the University of Oxford. • Scott Harrison, founder of Charity: Water Along with Alpha Pioneer Nicky Gumbel and his wife Pippa, the series will feature two new hosts – Toby Flint and Gemma Hunt. Toby is a pastor at Holy Trinity Brompton church in London and Gemma is an award-­‐winning BBC children's television host. The new series releases on the heels of the 2013 Alpha Youth Film Series that was developed by Alpha Canada, and which has seen more than 60,000 students in Canada experiencing Alpha and is being used globally to reach young people. Alpha Canada has similarly invested heavily in the new Alpha Film Series, both with finances and talent. Shaila Visser, National Director of Alpha Canada, says, “This is the next critical step towards reaching our goal of 1,000,000 Canadians experiencing Alpha. We are so excited to be able to serve the local church in a way that we’ve never been able to before.”
Affirming Alpha’s commitment to equipping the local church, Christian Riesbeck, Auxiliary Bishop of Ottawa, says, “The Alpha course was initially one of the principle mediums through which many of my parishioners were evangelized or “awakened” in their faith life. They were motivated to delve deeper in their relationship with Jesus to the point where they became leaders in the parish and intentional missionary disciples.” The first episode of the Alpha Film Series will be available free online on April 14, 2016, and new episodes will be released every week through April and May. It will later be available in DVD format and also in Spanish, Arabic, Mandarin and Hindi, by the end of 2016. As part of the widespread global launch, there will be three Canadian launch events held at Performance Works, Vancouver, BC, on April 14th at 7 p.m., North Bramalea United Church in Brampton, ON on April 25th at 7 p.m. and Gateway Church in London, ON on May 1st at 7 p.m. Registration is required for all launch events, and media are welcome and invited to attend. Watch the teaser here: alphacanada.org/afs Watch episode one: alphacanada.org/afsepisode1 What is Alpha? Alpha is a tool for evangelization that is being used by thousands of Catholic parishes in over 70 countries. Alpha is a series of sessions exploring the Christian faith, typically run over 10-­‐12 weeks. Each session looks at a different question around faith and is designed to create a safe place with conversations about life, faith and God. Alpha is run all around the world, and everyone's welcome. It runs in cafés, churches, universities, homes, bars – you name it.
 No two Alphas look the same, but generally they have three key things in common: food, a talk and good, open discussion. 29 million people have tried Alpha in 169 countries and 112 languages, including over 698,000 in Canada. alphacanada.org

#ProLife Launch of Protect Human Rights and Freedoms!


Human Rights and Freedoms Forever!, is a new non-profit organization to educate, equip, and help coordinate human-life-and-freedom-lovers for effective response to many recent worldwide attacks on human life, religious freedom, and DEMOCRACY ITSELF in a “Creeping Totalitarianism” born of our Western democracies ignorantly eroding the traditional Western values concerning the value of human life without realizing these were the historical and logical foundations of all Human Rights and Democratic Freedoms.

Take the Pledge and Join a Worldwide Movement of Educated Citizens Standing Up in Solidarity to Ensure Human Rights and Democracy Last Forever!

VISIT the SITE

In Summer 2014, I became aware of a major movement to restrict the human rights and democratic freedoms of doctors in Ontario, Canada, by forcing them to facilitate the killing of human lives against their conscience, or else they would lose their licences to be doctors, hence losing their jobs and their livelihood (similar measures have already been taken in some European countries).  Seeing doctors in a supposedly democratic country so very scared that they would have to either shut up about the high value they assign to the human lives they are supposed to treat and heal as doctors in order to keep their jobs, or else give up their livelihood, made me realize that democracy itself was under serious attack here in Canada.  Why on earth should anyone in a democracy be scared that they could lose their jobs if they don’t assist the taking of human lives and shut up about it?  Why would valuing every human life without exception, which is the historical and logical foundation of all democracies which hold that every human life MATTERS enough that all should have a democratic say in how they are governed, be something that one could lose one’s job and livelihood for?   This is something that should only happen in a totalitarian state.
As a scholar and educator/professor with a good sense of the history of ideas and their development in Western Civilization, with a certain specialty in the First Millennium during which the groundwork for all later human rights and democracy was laid, I realized just what it was in modern times, rooted in ignorance of the historical development of human rights and freedoms, that led to such a serious erosion of the foundations of democracy that doctors’ democratic freedoms could become so compromised.  In response to the government-regulated agency that was so intent on restricting doctors’ human rights and freedoms, I wrote what I now call The Education Necessary to Preserve Democracy Now Under Attack.  As not just Canada but the U.S.A. and European and other democracies have suffered the same trend which seriously threatens the long-term maintenance of these democracies unless this ignorance is corrected with education, I offer this work to all who love their human rights and democratic freedoms and who want to make sure our grandchildren are raised in a democracy as we were.
BY: Peter William John Baptiste SFO

brotherunity@ymail.com

or Call 1 (613) 761-0147 

#PopeFrancis " The heart that God joins to this moral misery of ours is the heart of Christ..." FULL TEXT

Pope Francis greets priests at his weekly General Audience on Wednesday. On Thursday, the Holy Father led a retreat for priests on the occasion of the Jubilee for Priests, taking place 1-3 June. - ANSA
Pope Francis greets priests at his weekly General Audience on Wednesday. On Thursday, the Holy Father led a retreat for priests on the occasion of the Jubilee for Priests, taking place 1-3 June. - ANSA
02/06/2016 09:10


(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis led a retreat for priests on Thursday, offering a series of three meditations on the theme of mercy.
The retreat was part of the Jubilee of Priests, one of a series of special Jubilees for various groups within the Church during the Holy Year of Mercy.
The Jubilee for Priests began on Wednesday, and will conclude tomorrow, on the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
The Holy Father delivered his meditations for the priest’s retreat in the Papal Basilicas of St John Lateran, St Mary Major, and St Paul’s Outside the Walls.
“God’s name is mercy,” Pope Francis said in his first meditation. “If we reflect on this natural feeling of mercy we begin to see how God Himself can be understood in terms of this defining attribute by which Jesus wished to reveal Him to us.”
At the papal Archbasilica of St John Lateran, Pope Francis focused on the parable of the prodigal son. He reflected on the “embarrassed dignity” of the son who returned to his father – he is embarrassed by what he has done, but his father restores him to his dignity. Mercy, the Pope said, helps us to maintain the balance between acknowledging that we are sinners, and recognizing our dignity as children loved by the Father. If we can see ourselves in the place of the son, who was shown mercy by the father, we in turn will be led to be merciful to others. 
Below, please find the full text of Pope Francis’ prepared remarks for his first meditation for the Retreat for Priests:
RETREAT FOR PRIESTS 2016
            Mercy, seen in feminine terms, is the tender love of a mother who, touched by the frailty of her new-born baby, takes the child into her arms and provides everything it needs to live and grow (rehanim). In masculine terms, mercy is the steadfast fidelity of a father who constantly supports, forgives and encourages his children to grow. Mercy is the fruit of a covenant; that is why God is said to remember his covenant of mercy (hesed). At the same time, it is an utterly free act of kindness and goodness (eleos) rising up from the depths of our being and finding outward expression in charity. This all-embracing character means that everyone can appreciate what it means to be merciful, to feel compassion for those who suffer, sympathy for those in need, visceral indignation in the face of patent injustice and a desire to respond with loving respect by attempting to set things right. If we reflect on this natural feeling of mercy, we begin to see how God himself can be understood in terms of this defining attribute by which Jesus wished to reveal him to us. God’s name is mercy.
            When we meditate on mercy, something special happens. The dynamic of the Spiritual Exercises takes on new power. Mercy helps us to see that the three ways of classical mysticism – the purgative, the illuminative and the unitive – are not successive stages that, once experienced, can then be put behind us. We never cease to be in need of renewed conversion, deeper contemplation and greater love. Nothing unites us to God more than an act of mercy, for it is by mercy that the Lord forgives our sins and gives us the grace to practise acts of mercy in his name. Nothing strengthens our faith more than being cleansed of our sins. Nothing can be clearer than the teaching of Matthew 25 and the Beatitude, “Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy” (Mt 5:7), for our understanding of God’s will and the mission he has entrusted to us. We can apply to mercy the Lord’s statement that “the measure you give will be the measure you receive” (Mt 7:2). Mercy makes us pass from the recognition that we have received mercy to a desire to show mercy to others. We can feel within us a healthy tension between sorrow for our sins and the dignity that the Lord has bestowed on us. Without further ado, we can pass from estrangement to embrace, as in the parable of the prodigal son, and see how God uses our own sinfulness as the vessel of his mercy. Mercy impels us to pass from personal to the communal. We see this in the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves, a miracle born of Jesus’ compassion for his people and for others. Something similar happens when we act mercifully: the bread of mercy multiplies as it is shared.
THREE SUGGESTIONS
             The free and joyful familiarity that comes about at every level between those who treat one another with mercy – the familiarity of the Kingdom of God as Jesus describes it in his parables – leads me to offer three suggestions for your personal prayer today.
            The first has to do with two practical counsels that Saint Ignatius gives. He tells us that “it is not great knowledge that fills and satisfies the soul, but the ability to feel and savour the things of God interiorly” (Spiritual Exercises, 2). Saint Ignatius adds that whenever we encounter and savour something we desire, we should pray in peace, “without being anxious to move forward as long as I am satisfied” (ibid., 76). So too, in these meditations on mercy we can begin with what we savour most and linger there, for surely one work of mercy will lead us to others. If we start by thanking the Lord for having wondrously created us and for even more wondrously redeemed us, surely this will lead us to a sense of sorrow for our sins. If we start by feeling compassion for the poor and the outcast, surely we will come to realize that we ourselves stand in need of mercy.
            My second suggestion for your prayer has to do with the way we speak about mercy. By now you have realized that in Spanish I like to use “mercy” as a verb: “We have to ‘show mercy’ [misericordiar] in order to ‘receive mercy’ [ser misericordiados]”. Mercy joins a human need to the heart of God, and this leads to immediate action. We cannot meditate on mercy without it turning into action. In prayer, it doesn’t help to intellectualize things. With the help of grace, our dialogue with the Lord has to focus straightaway on that sin for which I most need the Lord’s mercy, the one of which I am most ashamed, the one for which I most desire to make reparation. From the outset, too, we have to speak of what most moves us, of all those faces that make us want to do something to satisfy their hunger and thirst for God, for justice, for tenderness. Mercy is contemplated in action, but in a kind of action that is all-inclusive. Mercy engages our whole being – our feelings and our spirit – and all other beings as well.
            My last suggestion has to do with the fruit of these Exercises, namely the grace that we ask to receive. It is, in a word, the grace to become priests ever more ready to “receive mercy” (misericordiados) and to “show mercy” (misericordiosos). We can concentrate on mercy because it is what is most essential and definitive. By the stairway of mercy (cf. Laudato Si’, 77), we can descend to the depths of our human condition – including our frailty and sin – and ascend to the heights of divine perfection: “Be merciful (perfect) as your Father is merciful”. But always for the sake of “reaping” even greater mercy. This fruit should also be seen in a conversion of our institutional mindset: unless our structures are vibrant and aimed at making us more open to God’s mercy and more merciful to others, they can turn into something very bizarre and eventually counterproductive.
            This retreat, then, will follow the path of that “evangelical simplicity” which sees and does all things in the key of mercy. That mercy is dynamic, not so much a noun with a fixed and definite meaning, or a descriptive adjective, but rather a verb – “to show mercy” and “to receive mercy” – that spurs us to action in this world. Even more, it is a mercy that is “ever greater” (magis), a mercy that grows and expands, passing from good to better and from less to more. For the model that Jesus sets before us is that of the Father, who is ever greater and whose infinite mercy in some sense constantly “grows”. His mercy has no roof or walls, because it is born of his sovereign freedom.
FIRST MEDITATION: FROM ESTRANGEMENT TO CELEBRATION
            If, as we said, the Gospel presents mercy as an excess of God’s love, the first thing we have to do is to see where today’s world, and every person in it, most needs this kind of overflow of love. We have to ask ourselves how such mercy is to be received. On what barren and parched land must this flood of living water surge? What are the wounds that need this precious balm? What is the sense of abandonment that cries out for loving attention? What is the sense of estrangement that so thirsts for embrace and encounter?
            The parable which I would now propose for your meditation is that of the merciful Father (cf. Lk 15:11-31). We find ourselves before the mystery of the Father. I think we should begin with the moment when the prodigal son stands in the middle of the pigsty, in that inferno of selfishness where, having done everything he wanted to do, now, instead of being free, he feels enslaved. He looks at the pigs as they eat their husks… and he envies them. He feels homesick. He longs for the fresh baked bread that the servants in his house, his father’s house, eat for breakfast. Homesickness… nostalgia. Nostalgia is a powerful emotion. Like mercy, it expands the soul. It makes us think back to our first experience of goodness – the homeland from which we went forth – and it awakens in us the hope of returning there. Against this vast horizon of nostalgia, the young man – as the Gospel tells us – came to his senses and realized that he was miserable.
            Without dwelling on that misery of his, let us move on to the other moment, once his Father had embraced him and kissed him. He finds himself still dirty, yet dressed for a banquet. He fingers the ring he has been given, which is just like his father’s. He has new sandals on his feet. He is in the middle of a party, in the midst of a crowd of people. A bit like ourselves, if ever we have gone to confession before Mass and then all of a sudden found ourselves vested and in the middle of a ceremony.
            AN EMBARRASSED DIGNITY
            Let us think for a moment about the “embarrassed dignity” of this prodigal yet beloved son. If we can serenely keep our heart balanced between those two extremes – dignity and embarrassment – without letting go of either of them, perhaps we can feel how the heart of our Father beats with love for us. We can imagine that mercy wells up in it like blood. He goes out to seek us sinners. He draws us to himself, purifies us and sends us forth, new and renewed, to every periphery, to bring mercy to all. That blood is the blood of Christ, the blood of the new and eternal covenant of mercy, poured out for us and for all, for the forgiveness of sins. We contemplate that blood by going in and out of his heart and the heart of the Father. That is our sole treasure, the only thing we have to give to the world: the blood that purifies and brings peace to every reality and all people. The blood of the Lord that forgives sins. The blood that is true drink, for it reawakens and revives what was dead from sin.
            In our serene prayer, which wavers between embarrassment and dignity, dignity and embarrassment, let us ask for the grace to sense that mercy as giving meaning to our entire life, the grace to feel how the heart of the Father beats as one with our own. It is not enough to think of that grace as something God offers us from time to time, whenever he forgives some big sin of ours, so that then we can go off to do the rest by ourselves, alone.
            Saint Ignatius offers us an image drawn from the courtly culture of his time, but since loyalty among friends is a perennial value, it can also help us. He says that, in order to feel “embarrassment and shame” for our sins (but without forgetting God’s mercy), we can use the example of “a knight who finds himself before his king and his entire court, ashamed and embarrassed for having gravely wronged him, after having received from him many gifts and many favours” (Spiritual Exercises, 74). But like the prodigal son who finds himself in the middle of a banquet, this knight, who ought to feel ashamed before everyone, suddenly sees the King take him by the hand and restore his dignity. Indeed, not only does the King ask him to follow him into battle, but he puts him at the head of his peers. With what humility and loyalty this knight will serve him henceforth!
            Whether we see ourselves as the prodigal son in the midst of the banquet, or the disloyal knight restored and promoted, the important thing is that each of us feel that fruitful tension born of the Lord’s mercy: we are at one and the same time sinners pardoned and sinners restored to dignity.
            Simon Peter represents the ministerial aspect of this healthy tension. At every step along the way, the Lord trains him to be both Simon and Peter. Simon, the ordinary man with all his faults and inconsistencies, and Peter, the bearer of the keys who leads the others. When Andrew brings Simon, fresh from his nets, to Christ, the Lord gives him the name Peter, “Rock”. Yet immediately after praising Peter’s confession of faith, which comes from the Father, Jesus sternly reproves him for being tempted to heed the evil spirit telling him to flee the cross. Jesus will go on to invite Peter to walk on the water; he will let him sink into his own fear, only then to stretch out his hand and raise him up. No sooner does Peter confess that he is a sinner than the Lord makes him a fisher of men. He will question Peter at length about his love, instilling in him sorrow and shame for his disloyalty and cowardice, but he will also thrice entrust to him the care of his sheep.
            That is how we have to see ourselves: poised between our utter shame and our sublime dignity. Dirty, impure, mean and selfish, yet at the same time, with feet washed, called and chosen to distribute the Lord’s multiplied loaves, blessed by our people, loved and cared for. Only mercy makes this situation bearable. Without it, either we believe in our own righteousness like the Pharisees, or we shrink back like those who feel unworthy. In either case, our hearts grow hardened.
            Let us look a little more closely at this, and ask why this tension is so fruitful. The reason, I would say, is that it is the result of a free decision. The Lord acts mainly through our freedom, even though his help never fails us. Mercy is a matter of freedom. As a feeling, it wells up spontaneously. When we say that it is visceral, it might seem that it is synonymous with “animal”. But animals do not experience “moral” mercy, even though some of them may experience something akin to compassion, like the faithful dog keeping watch at the side of his ailing master. Mercy is a visceral emotion but it can also be the fruit of an acute intellectual insight – startling as a bolt of lightning but no less complex for its simplicity. We intuit many things when we feel mercy. We understand, for example that another person is in a desperate state, a limit situation; something is going on that is greater than his or her sins and failings. We also realize that the other person is our peer, that we could well be standing in his or her shoes. Or that evil is such an immense and devastating thing that it can’t simply be fixed by justice… Deep down, we realize that what is needed is an infinite mercy, like that of the heart of Christ, to remedy all the evil and suffering we see in the lives of human beings… Anything less than this is not enough. We can understand so many things simply by seeing someone barefoot in the street on a cold morning, or by contemplating the Lord nailed to the cross – for me!
            Moreover, mercy can be freely accepted and nurtured, or freely rejected. If we accept it, one thing leads to another. If we choose to ignore it, our heart grows cold. Mercy makes us experience our freedom and, as a result, the freedom of God himself, who, as he said to Moses, is “merciful with whom he is merciful” (cf. Dt 5:10). By his mercy the Lord expresses his freedom. And we, our own.
            We can “do without” the Lord’s mercy for a long time. In other words, we can go through life without thinking about it consciously or explicitly asking for it. Then one day we realize that “all is mercy” and we weep bitterly for not having known it earlier, when we needed it most!
            This feeling is a kind of moral misery. It is the entirely personal realization that at a certain point in my life I decided to go it alone: I made my choice and I chose badly. Such are the depths we have to reach in order to feel sorrow for our sins and true repentance. Otherwise, we lack the freedom to see that sin affects our entire life. We don’t recognize our misery, and thus we miss out on mercy, which only acts on that condition. People don’t go to a pharmacy and ask for an aspirin out of mercy. Out of mercy we ask for morphine, to administer to a person who is terminally ill and racked with pain.
            The heart that God joins to this moral misery of ours is the heart of Christ, his beloved Son, which beats as one with that of the Father and the Spirit. It is a heart that chooses the fastest route and takes it. Mercy gets its hands dirty. It touches, it gets involved, it gets caught up with others, it gets personal. It does not approach “cases” but persons and their pain. Mercy exceeds justice; it brings knowledge and compassion; it leads to involvement. By the dignity it brings, mercy raises up the one over whom another has stooped to bring help. The one who shows mercy and the one to whom mercy is shown become equals.
            That is why the Father needed to celebrate, so that everything could be restored at once, and his son could regain his lost dignity. This realization makes it possible to look to the future in a different way. It is not that mercy overlooks the objective harm brought about by evil. Rather, it takes away evil’s power over the future. It takes away its power over life, which then goes on. Mercy is the genuine expression of life that counters death, the bitter fruit of sin. As such, it is completely lucid and in no way naïve. It is not that it is blind to evil; rather, it sees how short life is and all the good still to be done. That is why it is so important to forgive completely, so that others can look to the future without wasting time on self-recrimination and self-pity over their past mistakes. In starting to care for others, we will examine our own consciences, and to the extent that we help others, we will make reparation for the wrong we ourselves have done. Mercy is always tinged with hope.
            To let ourselves to be drawn to and sent by the beating heart of the Father is to remain in this healthy tension of embarrassed dignity. Letting ourselves be drawn into his heart, like blood which has been sullied on its way to give life to the extremities, so that the Lord can purify us and wash our feet. Letting ourselves be sent, full of the oxygen of the Spirit, to revive the whole body, especially those members who are most distant, frail and hurting.
            A priest once told me about a street person who ended up living in a hospice. He was consumed by bitterness and did not interact with others. He was an educated person, as they later found out. Sometime thereafter, this man was hospitalized for a terminal illness. He told the priest that while he was there, feeling empty and disillusioned, the man in the next bed asked him to remove his bed pan and empty it. That request from someone truly in need, someone worse off than he was, opened his eyes and his heart to a powerful sense of humanity, a desire to help another person and to let himself be helped by God. A simple act of mercy put him in touch with infinite mercy. It led him to help someone else and, in doing so, to be helped himself. He died after making a good confession, and at peace.
            So I leave you with the parable of the merciful Father, now that we have we have entered into the situation of the son who feels dirty and dressed up, a dignified sinner, ashamed of himself yet proud of his father. The sign that we have entered into it is that we ourselves now desire be merciful to all. This is the fire Jesus came to bring to the earth, a fire that lights other fires. If the spark does not take, it is because one of the poles cannot make contact. Either excessive shame, which fails to strip the wires and, instead of freely confessing “I did this or that”, stays covered; or excessive dignity, which touches things with gloves.
            AN EXCESS OF MERCY
            The only way for us to be “excessive” in responding to God’s excessive mercy is to be completely open to receiving it and to sharing it with others. The Gospel gives us many touching examples of people who went to excess in order to receive his mercy. There is the paralytic whose friends let him down from the roof into the place where the Lord was preaching. Or the leper who left his nine companions to come back, glorifying and thanking God in a loud voice, to kneel at the Lord’s feet. Or the blind Bartimaeus whose outcry made Jesus halt before him. Or the woman suffering from a haemorrhage who timidly approached the Lord and touched his robe; as the Gospel tells us, Jesus felt power – dynamis – “go forth” from him… All these are examples of that contact that lights a fire and unleashes the positive force of mercy. Then too, we can think of the sinful woman, who washed the Lord’s feet with her tears and dried them with her hair; Jesus saw her excessive display of love as a sign of her having received great mercy. Ordinary people – sinners, the infirm and those possessed by demons – are immediately raised up by the Lord. He makes them pass from exclusion to full inclusion, from estrangement to embrace. That is the expression: mercy makes us pass “from estrangement to celebration”. And it can only be understood in the key of hope, in an apostolic key, in the key of knowing mercy and then showing mercy.
            Let us conclude by praying the Magnificat of mercy, Psalm 50 by King David, which we pray each Friday at Morning Prayer. It is the Magnificat of “a humble and contrite heart” capable of confessing its sin before the God who, in his fidelity, is greater than any of our sins. If we put ourselves in the place of the prodigal son, at the moment when, expecting his Father’s reproof, he discovers instead that his Father has thrown a party, we can imagine him praying Psalm 50. We can pray it antiphonally with him. We can hear him saying: “Have mercy on me, O God, in your kindness; in your compassion blot out my offence” … And ourselves continuing: “My offences, truly I (too) know them; my sin is always before me”. And together: “Against you, Father, against you, you alone, have I sinned”.
            May our prayer rise up from that interior tension which kindles mercy, that tension between the shame that says: “From my sins turn away your face, and blot out all my guilt”, and the confidence that says, “O purify me, then I shall be clean; O wash me, I shall be whiter than snow”. A confidence that becomes apostolic: “Give me again the joy of your help; with the spirit of fervour sustain me, that I may teach transgressors your ways, and sinners may return to you”.

Saint June 2 : Sts. Marcellinus & Peter : Martyrs : Died 304

Sts. Marcellinus & Peter
MARTYRS
Feast: June 2


     Information:
Feast Day:June 2
Died:304 AD, Rome
Major Shrine:Santi Marcellino e Pietro
Marcellinus was a priest, and Peter an exorcist, both of the clergy of Rome, and eminent for their zeal and piety. In the persecution of Dioclesian, about  the year 304, they were condemned to die for their faith: and by a secret order of the judge, the executioner led them into a forest, that the holy men being executed privately, no Christians might be acquainted with the place of their sepulchre. When he had brought them into a thicket overgrown with thorns and briers, three; miles from Rome, he declared to them his sanguinary commission. The saints cheerfully fell to work themselves, grubbed up the brambles, and cleared a spot fit for their sepulchre. After they were beheaded, their bodies were buried in the same place. Some time after, Lucilla, a pious lady, being informed by revelation, and assisted by another devout lady named Firmina, took up their bodies and honorably interred them near that of St. Tiburtius on the Lavican road in the Catacombs. Pope Damasus assures us, that, when a child, he learned all these particulars from the mouth of the executioner himself, and he has inserted them in a Latin epitaph with which he adorned their tomb. Anastasius the librarian testifies from ancient registers, that Constantine the Great built here a church in honor of these martyrs, in which he caused his mother St. Helena to be buried under a porphyry tomb, on the Lavican road, three miles from Rome, and that he gave to this church a paten, weighing thirty-five pounds, of pure gold, with many other rich presents; which is also mentioned by Bede, Ado, and Sigebert. The porphyry mausoleum of St. Helena is still shown among other antiquities near the Lateran basilica. Honorius I. and Adrian I. repaired this church and cemetery of St. Tiburtius, and SS. Marcellinus and Peter, as Anastasius mentions. Not long after, the bodies of SS. Marcellinus and Peter were translated into Germany on the following occasion. Eginhard, a German, the favorite secretary of Charlemagne, and his wife Emma, by mutual consent, made a vow of perpetual continency; and becoming a monk, was chosen abbot of Fontenelle, and, in 819, abbot of Ghent. Emma died in 836, to his great affliction, as appears from the letters of Lupus, abbot of Ferrieres, to him. This great man, in 827, sent his secretary to Rome, to procure from pope Gregory IV. some relies of martyrs to enrich the monasteries which he had founded or repaired. The pope sent him the bodies of SS. Marcellinus and Peter, which Eginhard translated to Strasburg. But soon after he deposited them first at Michlenstad; and afterwards at Malinheim, since called Selgenstad, three leagues from Frankfort, and two from Achaffenburg; where, in 829, he built to their honor a church and monastery, of which he died the first abbot. Besides the life of Charlemagne, and the annals of France, during the reigns of Pepin, Charlemagne, and Louis Debonnaire, he wrote four books in prose, and one in verse, on the translation of SS. Marcellinus and Peter. This translation is also mentioned by Sigebert, Aymoinus, Rabanus Maurus, &c. Pope Gregory the Great preached his twenty homilies on the gospels in the church of SS. Marcellinus and Peter at Rome; as appears from some of them, and from the testimony of John the Deacon.4 See their acts and the history of their translation in Papebroke, t. 1, Junij, p. 170, and Laderchius, Diss. de Basilicis, SS. Marcellini and Petri; Romae, 1705


SOURCE: EWTN

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

What is the Sacred Heart of Jesus - #Novena - #Litany to the #SacredHeart - Prayers to SHARE

The month of  June is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus The Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is celebrated on the after the 8th day of the Feast of Corpus Christi in 2016 June 3.  The Feast of the Sacred Heart in 2017 will be on June 23, 2017.
Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus has been evident for many centuries under different forms. However, Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647-1690), a Visitation Nun of the monastery of Paray-le-Monial, France received visions of the Sacred Heart and spread its devotion with this feast. Jesus appeared asking for a devotion of expiatory  love and frequent Communion, Communion on the First Friday of the month, and the observance of the Holy Hour.


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In 1856, Pope Pius IX extended the feast of the Sacred Heart to the universal Church. On 11 June, 1899, by order of Pope Leo XIII, all peoples were solemnly consecrated to the Sacred Heart. It is annually celebrated on the Friday 19 days after Pentecost.
12 Promises of Jesus given in the Vision

1. I will give them graces necessary for their state in life.
2. I will give peace in their families.
3. I will console them in all their troubles.
4. They shall find in My Heart an assured refuge during life and especially at the hour of death.
5. I will pour abundant blessings on all their undertakings.
6. Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and infinite ocean of mercy.
7. Tepid souls shall become fervent.
8. Fervent souls shall speedily rise to great perfection.
9. I will bless the homes in which the image of My Sacred Heart shall be exposed and honored.
10. I will give to priests the power to touch the most hardened hearts.
11. Those who propagate this devotion shall have their name written in My Heart, and it shall never be effaced.
12. I promise thee in the excess of the mercy of My Heart, that its all-powerful Love will grant to all those who shall receive Communion on the First Friday of Nine consecutive months the grace of final repentance; they shall not die under My displeasure, nor without receiving the Sacraments; My Heart shall be their assured refuge at that last hour.

CONSECRATION TO THE SACRED HEART
FOR INDIVIDUAL FAMILIES



Lord Jesus Christ, we consecrate ourselves to You today, each one of us, and all of us together as a family. Your Sacred Heart, the heart of your crucified and risen Body, is the ever living source of mercy and grace, hope and love for all of us. We desire to pledge ourselves and our lives to You in return.

Teach us to be always united with You, through Your Holy Spirit in mind and heart, in all our thoughts, words, deeds, joy and sufferings. Grant that we may ever know You more clearly, love You more dearly, and follow You more nearly.

We wish to share in Your redeeming work in our world: that your Father's will may truly be done on earth as it is in heaven, that the civilization of justice and love may thus be built up in our land.

Heart of Jesus, help us to keep sin away from our lives. Help us to keep loving, serving and forgiving each other. Live in our hearts and in our homes always, Make us wholly Yours.

With Your Mother's Immaculate Heart, we renew our consecration to Your Sacred Heart, for the ever greater glory of the Father in Heaven, Amen.

Jesus, Mary and Joseph, be with us and bless us now and at the hour of our death, Amen.


In 1899 Pope Leo XIII approved this Litany of the Sacred Heart of Jesus for public use. 
Lord, have mercy
Christ, have mercy
Lord, have mercy

Christ, hear us
Christ, graciously hear us.

God the Father of Heaven,
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
God, the Holy Spirit,
Holy Trinity, One God,
Heart of Jesus, Son of the Eternal Father,
Heart of Jesus, formed by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mother,
Heart of Jesus, substantially united to the Word of God,
Heart of Jesus, of Infinite Majesty,
Heart of Jesus, Sacred Temple of God,
Heart of Jesus, Tabernacle of the Most High,
Heart of Jesus, House of God and Gate of Heaven,
Heart of Jesus, burning furnace of charity,
Heart of Jesus, abode of justice and love,
Heart of Jesus, full of goodness and love,
Heart of Jesus, abyss of all virtues,
Heart of Jesus, most worthy of all praise,
Heart of Jesus, king and center of all hearts,
Heart of Jesus, in whom are all treasures of wisdom and knowledge,
Heart of Jesus, in whom dwells the fullness of divinity,
Heart of Jesus, in whom the Father was well pleased,
Heart of Jesus, of whose fullness we have all received,
Heart of Jesus, desire of the everlasting hills,
Heart of Jesus, patient and most merciful,
Heart of Jesus, enriching all who invoke Thee,
Heart of Jesus, fountain of life and holiness,
Heart of Jesus, propitiation for our sins,
Heart of Jesus, loaded down with opprobrium,
Heart of Jesus, bruised for our offenses,
Heart of Jesus, obedient to death,
Heart of Jesus, pierced with a lance,
Heart of Jesus, source of all consolation,
Heart of Jesus, our life and resurrection,
Heart of Jesus, our peace and our reconciliation,
Heart of Jesus, victim for our sins
Heart of Jesus, salvation of those who trust in Thee,
Heart of Jesus, hope of those who die in Thee,
Heart of Jesus, delight of all the Saints,

Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world,
Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world,
Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world,

V. Jesus, meek and humble of heart.
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.

Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.

have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.

have mercy on us.

have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.

have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.

have mercy on us.

have mercy on us.

have mercy on us.

have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.
have mercy on us.

spare us, O Lord.

graciously hear us, O Lord.

have mercy on us, O Lord.


R. Make our hearts like to Thine.
Let us pray;

Almighty and eternal God, look upon the Heart of Thy most beloved Son and upon the praises and satisfaction which He offers Thee in the name of sinners; and to those who implore Thy mercy, in Thy great goodness, grant forgiveness in the name of the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who livest and reignest with Thee forever and ever. Amen.
Padre Pio's Sacred Heart Novena


This powerful prayer was recited every day by Padre Pio for all those who recommended themselves to his prayers:

I. O my Jesus, You said "verily I say to You, ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened to you", behold I knock, I seek and I ask for the grace of...

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father. Sacred Heart of Jesus I put all my trust in Thee.

II. O my Jesus, You said, "verily I say to You, whatsoever you shall ask the Father in My name, He will give it to you", behold in your name I ask the Father for the grace of...

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father. Sacred Heart of Jesus I put all my trust in Thee.

III. O my Jesus, You said, "verily I say to You, heaven and earth shall pass away but My words shall not pass away", behold I encouraged by your infallible words, now ask for the grace of...

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be to the Father. Sacred Heart of Jesus I put all my trust in Thee.

O sacred Heart of Jesus, to whom one thing alone is impossible, namely, not to have compassion on the afflicted, have pity on us miserable sinners and grant us the grace which we ask of Thee through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, your and our tender Mother.


Say the Salve Regina (Hail Holy Queen) and add, St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus, pray for us

Wow Sisters of Life Celebrate 25 years of #ProLife Evangelization - God bless their Work! SHARE

The Sisters of Life Celebrate their 25th Anniversary! 
About
The Sisters of Life is a contemplative / active religious community of women founded in 1991 by John Cardinal O’Connor for the protection and enhancement of the sacredness of every human life. Like all religious communities, we take the three traditional vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. We also are consecrated under a special, fourth vow to protect and enhance the sacredness of human life.
Reverence and gratitude for the unique and unrepeatable gift of each human life made in the image and likeness of God fuels the prayer of each Sister, our first mission in building the Kingdom of God and the “Culture of Life.” It also provides the starting point for our interactions with others, especially relationships in community between our 80 Sisters (who come from across the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Ireland, Australia and Spain), and in our apostolates.
Inspired by the love of Christ our Spouse, the author of Life, we desire to pour out all our gifts of nature and grace in the apostolate, that nothing of the gift of life, and no one to whom it has been given, should be lost.
Our missions are carried out with the heart of the Church and with the hope of revealing to those we serve the inherent goodness and beauty of their own lives, so that each person may see and experience the truth that they are an unrepeatable creation of the Master.

History


During a visit to the Dachau Concentration Camp, the then Bishop-elect John J. O’Connor placed his hands inside the red brick crematoria oven and “felt the intermingled ashes of Jew and Christian, rabbi, priest and minister.” Struck to the heart, he proclaimed, “Good God, how could human beings do this to other human beings?” In that instant, he received a life-transforming grace and vowed to do all he could, from that moment forward, to protect and enhance the sacredness of every human life, wherever it was most vulnerable.
Several years later, now John Cardinal O’Connor, Archbishop of New York and the leading voice for life within the Church, he prayed to understand why the efforts of the pro-life cause were not gleaning the results expected. His eyes fell upon the passage from Scripture, “This kind of demon can only be cast out by prayer and fasting,” and another, life-transforming, grace was his. This time, though, the grace was not just a personal one, but one for the whole Church; it was the grace that gave birth to a new charism, a new religious community in the Church, the Sisters of Life.

After receiving hundreds of responses to his weekly newspaper column titled, “Help Wanted: Sisters of Life,” eight women entered the newly formed community on Foundation Day, June 1, 1991. Among those eight was Mother Agnes Mary Donovan, the first Superior General of the Sisters of Life.
JOIN the Sisters of Life!
The Sisters of Life welcome vocation inquiries from single, Catholic women who do not have living children and are in good physical and mental health. Generally, the women who enter the community have completed some level of higher education, and are in the age range of 21-35.

For information on our “Come and See” weekends, or for additional information on discerning a call to the Sisters of Life, please fill out the Vocational Inquiry Form.
Sr. Grace Dominic, S.V.
Vocations Director
Annunciation
38 Montebello Road
Suffern, NY 10901
845.357.0258
Text Edited from the http://www.sistersoflife.org/ Website
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