Saturday, May 27, 2017

#PopeFrancis "We pray in order to bring all to God, to entrust the world to Him,” Ascension #Homily + FULL Mass Video

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis wrapped up an intense 1-day apostolic visit to the Italian port city of Genoa with the celebration of Mass.
To the faithful present for the open-air ceremony in Genoa’s Kennedy Square, the Pope said Christians must never tire of working for the common good, they must never fear going out into the world with Christ’s message of peace and hope…
“Christian prayer is not a way of being a little bit at peace with oneself or finding some interior harmony; we pray in order to bring all to God, to entrust the world to Him,” Pope Francis said on Saturday.  He was delivering a homily at an evening Mass in the Italian port city of Genoa.  The Mass at the Kennedy Square seafront was the final event of his day-long visit to the city, during which he met the clergy and religious, youth, prisoners, children and staff of a pediatric hospital and lunched with the poor and the marginalized.   
Prayer – God's power and strength
Commenting on the scripture readings of Sunday, the Pope explained that in Christ’s Ascensio n “the power of Jesus, the strength of God” is revealed that has “linked earth with heaven for us”.  And this power continues even today and will last forever in Christ’s unceasing prayers and intercession for us before the Father, every moment….especially at every Mass.  And  “Jesus has gifted this capacity to intercede also to us, to his Church, that has the power and also the duty to intercede and pray for all.”
The power of prayer lies in anchoring ourselves on God with our burdens, persons and situations in order not to be submerged by what he described as this “evil of living”.  Prayer allows God to enter our time.   “Prayer is intercession. It’s not tranquility, it’s charity,” the Pope stressed. 
The Pope said our power lies not in triumphing or shouting loud according to the logic of the world but in exercising the ‘gentle power of prayer’, with which one can even stop wars and obtain peace. 
Proclamation - reachig out, not closed in
Another power of Jesus revealed in the Ascension is that of proclamation.   When Jesus sent his disciples to proclaim Him with the power of the Holy Spirit, He trusted us with all our shortcomings.  And in this, a great imperfection that we need to overcome immediately is that of closing ourselves.  It’s because the Gospel cannot be shut in and sealed, because God's love is dynamic and wants to reach others.  Hence to proclaim Him, one needs to go out, come out of oneself.
With the Lord is it is forbidden to relax in acquired comforts.  A Christian is always on the move with the Lord towards other.  He is a pilgrim, a missionary, a hopeful marathon man, gentle but intent on walking, the Pope said.  The Lord desires that the proclamation goes ahead with his strength, not with that of the world, with the limpid and meek strength of joyful witnessing.  This, the Pope said, is urgent. 

Free Christian Movie : The Story of Ruth - Stars Peggy Wood


The Story of Ruth (1960) 132 min | Drama | 17 June 1960 (USA) Inspired by the scriptural tale. Moabitess priestess Ruth is drawn both to a Judean man and to his talk of a forgiving God. After tragedy strikes, she begins a new life in Bethlehem.
 Director: Henry Koster Writer: Norman Corwin Stars: Stuart Whitman, Tom Tryon, Peggy Wood

#PopeFrancis "'Why do children suffer?', and I don't find any explantion,..I only look at the crucifix and stand still there." at Hospital - FULL Video

Radio Vaticana report: “Faith works primarily through charity and without it, it is dead. So I encourage you to carry out your delicate work motivated by charity", said Pope Francis  to the staff members of  “Giannini Gaslini” Pediatric Hospital during his day long visit to the Italian city of Genoa on Saturday.  
The Pope said that he couldn’t miss this visit where children are cared for, because the suffering of children is certainly something very difficult to accept. And added that  it is there that the Lord called him to be,  though briefly, close to the children and their relatives.  "Often and again I ask myself: 'Why do children suffer?', and I don't find any explantion," the Pope said.  "I only look at the crucifix and stand still there." 
Pope Francis commended the devoted service of the hospital staff, the President of the Foundation, the Archbishop of Genoa, physicians, paramedics,  the various specialized staff, as well as the Cappucchin Friars Minor and all those who assist and help the children with love and dedication and said that they in fact also need their  gestures of friendship, of  understanding, of affection and paternal and maternal support.
This institute is an act of love of Senator Gerolamo  Gaslini he said who in honour of his daughter who died of a tender age had founded the hospital by sacrificing all he had: companies, establishments, property, money, and even his home. This is why this hospital is known and appreciated in Italy and around the world and has a special role of continuing to be a symbol of generosity and solidarity he said.   In founding of the Hospital he observed, Gaslini said: "It is my firm will that this Institute has the Catholic faith as its foundation and guide [...] that it ferments every activity and comforts every pain." The pope called them to  often think of the "good Samaritan" of the Gospel- attentive to the needs of their small patients, accepting tenderly  their fragility, and seeing the Lord in them. Whoever serves the sick with love serves Jesus who opens the Kingdom of Heaven he affirmed.
The Pope hoped that the Hospital, faithful to its mission, will continue its appreciated work of care and research through the generous and disinterested contribution and contribute to all categories and at all levels. He concluded assuring the staff, patients and their relatives of his prayer and blessings.
Earlier on Wednesday linking-up live via telephone to a parish radio in Genova that broadcasts a Wednesday weekly programme especially dedicated to the children’s hospital, Pope Francis told the little patients that it is with joy that he is preparing to be with them.
"Istituto Giannina Gaslini" is a tertiary level pediatric hospital affiliated to the University of Genoa and  is considered one of the foremost children’s hospitals in Europe and is formally recognized as a Scientific Institute for Research, Hospitalization and Healthcare.

#PopeFrancis "There has always been a friendship between the Church and work, starting with a working Jesus." to Workers - FULL Video - Text

Pope in Genoa: The illness of the economy and the dignity of work. Prayer for Minya Coptic Martyrs



The first stage of Pope Francis visit to Genoa is in the Ilva steel plant, marked by economic difficulties and unemployment. The virtues of a good entrepreneur and good worker. The "speculator" is a "mercenary" who sells everything, including his dignity. Work for everyone and not "social security". At the meeting with priests and religious, Francis recalls the martyrdom of Coptic Christians in Minya and his "Brother Tawadros".
Genoa (AsiaNews) - There is an "illness" in the economy that is sinking into the transformation of the entrepreneur into "speculator" and "mercenary", for which the "faces" of those who work or their dignity are unimportant. And "sometimes the political system seems to encourage those who speculate on labor and not who invests and believes in labor." In his visit to Genoa, Pope Francis puts his finger on the many wounds that afflict the world of work. Francis and Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, Archbishop of the city, decided to begin the visit at the Iva steel plant, plunged in crisis, marked by unemployment and the fragility of an uncertain future.
Immediately afterwards, the Pope met clergy and religious in the cathedral of St. Lawrence. The meeting began with a moment of prayer and silence for the dead and the entire Egyptian Coptic community and for "brother Tawadros II", once again wounded by violence in Minya, Lower Egypt. "And lets remember - said Francis - that todays martyrs are far more numerous than those at the beginning of Church history."
The two meetings, the one with the world of work and that of the priests and religious, were structured as a dialogue between the pontiff and some representatives.
At Iva he responded to questions from a businessman, a worker, a day-labourer, an unemployed. In his answers, the pontiff exalted the virtues of the "good entrepreneur": "" creativity, love for ones own enterprise, passion and pride for the labor produced by hands and intelligence, his and his workers " , "The ability to create, create work, create products".
There are also the virtues of the worker: "Sometimes a worker is thought to work well just because he is paid: this is a serious disrespect for workers and labor, because it denies the dignity of work that begins with working well for dignity, honor ".
WIth regards the dignity of work and the worker, the Pope seems to reject the idea of  "social security or unemployment allowance" that some political parties seem to suggest to overcome unemployment. The pontiff urged people "not to resign themselves to the ideology that takes hold and imagines a world where only half will work and the others will be maintained by a social security check: it must be clear that the goal to reach is not income for everyone but work for everyone, because without work for everyone there will be no dignity for everyone."
Entrepreneur and workers are united as "in a family". And this also determines how to deal with difficult choices such as layoffs or bankruptcies. "If and when a boss must fire someone," said the pope, "it is always a painful choice and he would not do it if he didnt have to. No good entrepreneur loves to lay off his people. No. Anyone who thinks about solving the problem of his company by firing people, is not a good businessman: he is a trader. Today he sells his people, tomorrow ... he sells his own dignity. He always suffers, and sometimes from this suffering new ideas arise to avoid lay-offs. This is the good entrepreneur. "
Francis also pointed out that "an illness of the economy is the progressive transformation of entrepreneurs into speculators. The entrepreneur must not be confused with the speculator: they are two different types. The speculator is a figure similar to what Jesus in the Gospel calls mercenary, in contrast to the Good Shepherd. The speculator does not like his company, does not love the workers, but sees business and workers only as a means to profit. He uses his company and workers to make profit. Firing, closing, moving the company does not create any problems, because the speculator uses, exploits, eats people and means for his profit targets."
"When the economy is inhabited by good entrepreneurs, businesses are friendly to people and even to the poor. When it falls into the hands of speculators, everything is ruined. With the speculator, the economy loses face and loses its faces. It is a faceless economy. An abstract economy. Behind the speculators decisions there are no people and therefore you can not see people to be dismissed and cut. When the economy loses contact with the faces of concrete people, it itself becomes a faceless economy and therefore a ruthless economy. We must fear the speculators, not the entrepreneurs. No, do not be afraid of the entrepreneurs because there are so many good guys! No: fear the speculators."
"But paradoxically, sometimes the political system seems to encourage those who speculate on labor and not those who invests and believes in labor. Why? Because it creates bureaucracy and controls, starting from the hypothesis that the actors of the economy are speculators, and so those who do not remain disadvantaged and who can find the means to circumvent the controls and reach their goals. It is known that regulations and laws designed for dishonorable end up penalizing honorable. And today there are so many real entrepreneurs, honest entrepreneurs who love their work-loving people who work close to them to carry on the business: these are the most disadvantaged by these policies that favor speculators. But the honest and virtuous entrepreneurs in the end succeed, in spite of everything."
The Popes answers were interrupted dozens of times by the applause of the thousands of workers in the Ivva factory, some in their worksuits, others waering helmets, others with constantly waving Vatican flags. Everyone calling "Fran-ce-sco! Francis!". At the beginning of his conversation, the Pope had said, "There has always been a friendship between the Church and work, starting with a working Jesus. Where there is a worker, there is the interest and the gaze of love of the Lord and of the Church. "
The encounter with priests and religious had the tone of a quiet conversation with anecdotes, facts, ideas of Pope Francis who commented on some questions of parish priests, young priests, religious, a nun who asked him questions about Priestly fraternity, the bond with the diocese, the charism of the religious institute, the difficulty of finding vocations due to negative demographics.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Saturday May 27, 2017 - #Eucharist

Saturday of the Sixth Week of Easter
Lectionary: 296


Reading 1ACTS 18:23-28

After staying in Antioch some time,
Paul left and traveled in orderly sequence
through the Galatian country and Phrygia,
bringing strength to all the disciples.

A Jew named Apollos, a native of Alexandria,
an eloquent speaker, arrived in Ephesus.
He was an authority on the Scriptures.
He had been instructed in the Way of the Lord and,
with ardent spirit, spoke and taught accurately about Jesus,
although he knew only the baptism of John.
He began to speak boldly in the synagogue;
but when Priscilla and Aquila heard him,
they took him aside
and explained to him the Way of God more accurately.
And when he wanted to cross to Achaia,
the brothers encouraged him
and wrote to the disciples there to welcome him.
After his arrival he gave great assistance
to those who had come to believe through grace.
He vigorously refuted the Jews in public,
establishing from the Scriptures that the Christ is Jesus.

Responsorial PsalmPS 47:2-3, 8-9, 10

R. (8a) God is king of all the earth.
or:
R. Alleluia.
All you peoples, clap your hands;
shout to God with cries of gladness.
For the LORD, the Most High, the awesome,
is the great king over all the earth.
R. God is king of all the earth.
or:
R. Alleluia.For king of all the earth is God;
sing hymns of praise.
God reigns over the nations,
God sits upon his holy throne.
R. God is king of all the earth.
or:
R. Alleluia.
The princes of the peoples are gathered together
with the people of the God of Abraham.
For God's are the guardians of the earth;
he is supreme.
R. God is king of all the earth.
or:
R. Alleluia.

AlleluiaJN 16:28

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I came from the Father and have come into the world;
now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelJN 16:23B-28

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Amen, amen, I say to you,
whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.
Until now you have not asked anything in my name;
ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.

"I have told you this in figures of speech.
The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures
but I will tell you clearly about the Father.
On that day you will ask in my name,
and I do not tell you that I will ask the Father for you.
For the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me
and have come to believe that I came from God.
I came from the Father and have come into the world.
Now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father." 

#Novena to the Holy Spirit for Pentecost - Day 1 - Begins - SHARE #Pentecost Prayers and Act of Consecration

ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY GHOST

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. / I adore the brightness of Your purity the unerring keenness of Your justice and the might of Your love. You are the Strength / and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart! To be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light: and listen to Your voice and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You / by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds / and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart / I implore You / Adorable Spirit I Helper of my infirmity, so to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace O Holy Ghost, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere / "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.


PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY GHOST

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul / the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth / the Spirit on Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude, that I may bear my cross with You I and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God find know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable / the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord with the sign of Your true disciples / and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.


FIRST DAY OF THE NOVENA

Holy Spirit! Lord of Light!
From Your clear celestial height,
Your pure beaming radiance give!

Prayer


Almighty and eternal God, Who hast vouchsafed to regenerate us by water and the Holy Ghost, and hast given us forgiveness all sins, vouchsafe to send forth from heaven upon us your sevenfold Spirit, the Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding, the Spirit of Counsel and fortitude, the Spirit of Knowledge and Piety, and fill us with the Spirit of Holy Fear. Amen.

(Our Father and Hail Mary ONCE. Glory be to the Father 7 TIMES. Act of Consecration, Prayer for the Seven Gifts)



Novena Day 1 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/novena-to-holy-spirit-day-1-pentecost.html
Day 2 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/holy-spirit-novena-day-2-for-pentecost.html
Day 3 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/holy-spirit-novena-day-3-for-pentecost.html
Day 4 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/novena-to-holy-spirit-day-4-for.html
Day 5 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/novena-to-holy-spirit-day-5-for.html
Day 6 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/novena-to-holy-spirit-day-6-for.html
Day 7 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/novena-to-holy-spirit-day-7-for.html
Day 8 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/novena-to-holy-spirit-day-8-for.html
Day 9 http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2013/05/novena-day-9-to-holy-spirit-for.html

Friday, May 26, 2017

Saint May 27 : St. Augustine of Canterbury : Patron of #England

St. Augustine of Canterbury
APOSTLE OF ENGLAND, ARCHBISHOP
Feast: May 27


Information:
Feast Day:
May 27
Born:
early 6th century, Rome, Italy
Died:
26 May 604, Canterbury, Kent, England
Patron of:
England
Today, May 27, we celebrate the feast of Saint Augustine of Canterbury (sometimes referred to as “Saint Augustine the Lesser,” died 605), called the “Apostle of England,” and the eventual first Archbishop of Canterbury. Not to be confused with his namesake, Saint Augustine of Hippo, the work of Saint Augustine of Canterbury is widely regarded as the birth of conversion in England, beginning the slow process of conversion of Celtic tradition and reconciliation with Rome. Much of what is known of Saint Augustine of Canterbury is taken from letters written by Pope Saint Gregory the Great, and through the written ecclesiastical history of England written by Saint Bede. Little is known about Augustine’s early life.
We join his story as he serves as Prior of a Benedictine monastery of monks in Rome, during the papacy of Pope Saint Gregory the Great. In 596, when historians suggest that Saint Augustine was already past middle age, he was sent by the pope, with a delegation of approximately 40 monks, to England to preach the Gospel.
News of the ferocity of the Anglo-Saxons, and their treatment of Catholics, was widespread, but with encouragement—and out of obedience—Augustine undertook this difficult and potentially dangerous mission… but not before returning to the Pope and seeking reassurance. Pope Gregory provided encouragement, stating, “Go on, in God’s name! The greater your hardships, the greater your crown. May the grace of Almighty God protect you, and permit me to see the fruit of your labor in the heavenly country! If I cannot share your toil, I shall yet share the harvest, for God knows that it is not good-will which is wanting.” Upon reaching England, following a difficult crossing of the channel, Saint Augustine announced their arrival to King Ethelbert of Kent, telling him they brought the message of eternal life. King Ethelbert was a pagan, although he had married a Christian, his wife, Bertha. On her request, he promised to receive the monks and consider their message. Saint Augustine led the monks in procession to the king, carrying a silver cross and singing litanies to God for the salvation of this people. King Ethelbert allowed them to sit and share the Good News with him, which was unexpected.
When Augustine was finished, King Ethelbert said: “Your words and promises are very beautiful. But because they are new and uncertain, I cannot approve them and leave everything that I along with all my people have followed for so long a time. However, since you have traveled from afar and made a long journey in order to share with us what you deem to be truer and better, I will not place obstacles in your way, but will receive you well and offer what is necessary for your subsistence. Nor will I impede you from bringing to your religion all those whom you are able to persuade.” He allowed them to remain on the isle, providing them a place to live and land on which to build (in what would later become Canterbury), and the opportunity to preach as they wished. Eventually, impressed with the community under the direction of Saint Augustine, King Ethelbert converted and was baptized. Despite the fact that the king did not force his subjects to become Christian, and instead instituted a policy of religious choice, many of his subjects converted to Catholicism (sources place the number at “10,000” subjects). In the midst of this mild success, Pope Gregory cautioned him against pride, writing “fear lest, amidst the wonders that are done, the weak mind be puffed up by self-esteem.”
Augustine, following his initial success in England, traveled to France, where he was consecrated as a bishop, and subsequently returned to Canterbury to establish a vigorous community of religious life. With him he brought a priceless collection of illuminated manuscripts, still present and preserved today. He reconsecrated and rebuilt a church at Canterbury, and founded the monastery of Saint Peter and Saint Paul Outside the Walls (now sometimes known as Saint Augustine’s). He is further credited with founding the King’s School at Canterbury, the world’s oldest school. The remains of some of these early buildings remain near the now famous cathedral, built in later years at Canterbury.
Despite the spread of Christianity throughout England, progress was slow, and Augustine met with considerable failure along the way, reminding us that the lives of the saints are not always easy or joyous. He was met with much opposition and disappointment, and frequently turned to Pope Saint Gregory for encouragement and inspiration. Pope Gregory wisely suggested that Augustine work within the customs of the English people (much like Saint Patrick did in Ireland), purifying rather than destroying pagan temples and customs, transforming pagan rites and festivals into Christian feasts, and retaining local customs whenever possible and appropriate. Pope Gregory wrote:
“The temples of the idols among that people should on no account be destroyed... it is a good idea to detach them from the service of the devil, and dedicate them to the service of the true God. And since they have a custom of sacrificing many oxen to demons, let some other solemnity be substituted ... so that they may learn to slay their cattle in honor of God and for their own feasting . . . If they are allowed some worldly pleasures in this way, they are more likely to find their way to the true inner joys. For it is doubtless impossible to eradicate all errors at one stroke . . . just as the man who sets out to climb a high mountain does not advance by leaps and bounds, but goes upward step by step and pace by pace. It is in this way that the Lord revealed himself to the Israelite people.”
Augustine followed this directive, encouraging his monks to do the same. Even so, by the time of Saint Augustine’s death in 605, the work of evangelization of England had only just begun. It is believed, however, that he lay the groundwork for the eventual spread of Christianity throughout the kingdom.
Augustine was obedient and steadfast, despite meeting many obstacles. He lived the Benedictine doctrine of “presence, not confrontation” in preaching the Gospel. His perseverance, in the face of opposition and difficulty, is inspiring even today. He was a man of humility, who doubted his ability to make small decisions, seeking counsel and writing to Pope Gregory for reassurance and advice. He truly followed the advice of his counselor, who wrote: "He who would climb to a lofty height must go by steps, not leaps." Augustine died after just 8 long years, toiling in England. He was buried in Canterbury, at the monastery he founded. Throughout his life, Saint Augustine of Canterbury realized that he was but one man, who reported to a higher authority. He sought guidance from Pope Saint Gregory during his times of great difficulty, turning to God whenever he met obstacles (which were all too frequent!). The great pope sent many letters of support and spiritual counsel, including the one excerpted here: Glory to God in the highest and peace to his people on earth, because the grain of wheat has fallen into the earth and has died. Christ has died in order to reign in heaven. Not only that: by his death we live; by his weakness we are strengthened; by his passion we are freed from suffering; impelled by his love, we are seeking in Britain brothers whom we do not know; through his help we have found those for whom we were searching, although we were not acquainted with them. Who, dear brother, is capable of describing the great joy of believers when they have learned what the grace of Almighty God and your own cooperation achieved among the Angles? They abandoned the errors of darkness and were bathed with the light of holy faith. With full awareness they trampled on the idols which they had previously adored with savage fear. They are now committed to Almighty God. The guidelines given them for their preaching restrain them from falling into evil ways. In their minds they are submissive to the divine precepts and consequently feel uplifted. They bow down to the ground in prayer lest their minds cling too closely to earthly things. Whose achievement is this? It is the achievement of him who said: My Father is at work until now and I am at work as well. God chose illiterate preachers and sent them into the world in order to show the world that conversion is brought about not by men's wisdom but rather by his own power. So in like manner God worked through weak instruments and wrought great things among the Angles. Dear brother, in this heavenly gift there is something which should inspire us with great fear and great joy.
For I know through your love for that people, specially chosen for you, that Almighty God has performed great miracles. But it is necessary that the same heavenly gift should cause you to rejoice with fear and to fear with gladness. You should be glad because by means of external miracles the soul of the Angles (English) have been led to interior grace. But you should tremble lest, on account of these signs, the preacher's own weak soul be puffed up with presumption; lest, while seeming externally raised aloft in honor, it fall internally as a result of vainglory.
We should remember that when the disciples on their joyous return from their preaching mission said to their heavenly master: Lord, in your name even devils were subjected to us, he immediately retorted: Do not rejoice about this but rather that your names are written in heaven.
The life of Saint Augustine of Canterbury reminds us that we all need the support of those around us, and more importantly, the grace of God to persevere in our daily lives. We are confronted each day with obstacles—many quite small—but some which seem insurmountable. We have ample opportunities to turn from our faith, to give up, to give in. Saint Augustine’s obedience and zeal for his work, accompanied by the patient counsel and encouragement of Pope Saint Gregory, remind us that the Lord provides the support we need to accomplish great things—both in heaven and on earth. We may not always seek that support. We may not even be aware that it exists. Or it may come from the most unlikely of places (like a pagan king intrigued by the Gospel!). When we are lost and confused, we are reminded that we are not alone, and have the Lord to assist us in taking our steps (not leaps) toward the achievement of His lofty goals for each of us!

God, Our Father,
by the preaching of Saint Augustine of Canterbury, you led the people of England to the Gospel. May the fruits of his work continue in your Church. Grant that through his intercession, the hearts of those who err may return to the unity of your truth and that we may be of one mind in doing your will.
Saint Augustine,
Help us to work in a spirit of trust and love, as well as a spirit of prudence and understanding, so that we may grow as God’s faithful. May harmony reign ever among us. Because of your example in living the Gospel, we dedicate ourselves,through your intercession, to live that same Gospel.
Implore on our behalf the favor of an ever-deepening trust in God’s goodness and love. Obtain God’s grace for us that we may grow in faith, hope, love and all virtues. Grant that by imitating you we may imitate our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ. Watch over us and help us to reach that place where you live with all the saints for ever and ever. Amen.
Text shared from 365 Rosaries Blog

#BreakingNews 28 Christians Killed by Terrorists in Targeted attack in Egypt - Please PRAY

Terrorists kill dozens in an attack targeting Christians

According to Fr Greiche, a spokesman for the Egyptian Catholic Church, militants want to "purify Egypt and the Middle East of the Christian presence." The attack on the eve of Ramadan is the "the worst advertisement". It is a sad moment for Egypt and “Muslims who want to live peace". Tonight, prayers and services will be held in memory of the victims.

Cairo (AsiaNews) – Christians are “targeted by terrorists;” this is “a fact. From their distorted perspective, such actions "are an attempt to purify Egypt and the Middle East of the Christian presence,” said Fr Rafic Greiche, spokesman for the Egyptian Catholic Church, who talked to AsiaNews about today’s attack against Coptic Christians.
"Different sources give contradictory figures for the number of casualties,” Fr Greiche noted. “Some reports say 23; others, 25; the latest rumours say 26 dead (36 according to others). What is certain is that there are also many children among the victims."
In its initial reporting, Egypt’s state news agency, citing local sources, said that about a dozen men armed with automatic weapons, stopped a bus carrying pilgrims to the monastery of Anba Samuel in Minya Governorate, south of Cairo, then opened fire on the passengers. One apparently taped the slaughter with a smartphone. According to the latest news, “The terrorists attacked at least three vehicles,” Fr Rafic said.
In addition to the dead, dozens of people were wounded, some in serious conditions, by a group of Jihadis, perhaps linked to the Islamic State group, active in the area. Eyewitnesses claim that gunmen were wearing military uniforms.
The pilgrims were travelling to an orthodox monastery in Upper Egypt, about 300 kilometres from Cairo. Many people visit the monastery on week-ends to pray and attend Mass, especially on Friday, which is the day off in Egypt.
"Many people came for the [religious] services,” Fr Greiche said, and were “an easy target for terrorists.” In fact, "Today is the eve of Ramadan, which the terrorists picked for their attack,” he added. “They did the same on 11 December, the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad. They attack when there are a lot of people. "
In addition to being a “sad moment for Egypt and Egyptians, especially for Muslims who want to live in peace,” this new attack a few hours before the start of the Islamic month of fasting and prayer "is the worst advertisement" terrorists can have. "This evening, we shall pray for the new Christian victims during Mass and other services.”
Today's incident is but the latest in a long trail of blood among Egypt’s Christian minority (10 per cent of the population). At least 75 Christians have been killed by Muslim extremists over the past few months, in last month’s church attacks, in the Palm Sunday bombing, as well as last December’s attack against St Catherine Coptic cathedral in Abassiya, Cairo.
Following these attacks, the Islamic State group (also known by its Arabic acronym Daesh) claimed responsibility for them and threatened more violence against the country’s Christian minority.
The rising violence almost scuttled Pope Francis's apostolic visit to Egypt in late April. The pontiff went ahead anyway and met with Egyptian President al-Sisi, al-Azhar Grand Imam Ahmad Al-Tayeb, and celebrated Mass in front of tens of thousands of faithful.
Recently, Egypt’s public prosecutor charged 48 alleged Islamic State militants and sympathisers in connection with three attacks against Coptic churches. At present, 31 are in prison, whilst the others are still on the run.
In light of the escalation of violence, Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi has imposed a state of emergency across the country. Today he chaired a meeting of his security council during which he pledged an all-out war against extremist and Jihadi movements operating in the country. (DS)

#PopeFrancis ".. bear witness with my life that the Lord is risen, He is alive. Memory, prayer, mission." Homily

(Vatican Radio) The Christian’s place is in the world, in order to proclaim Jesus; but his gaze is turned to heaven in order to be united to Him: that was the message of Pope Francis at the morning Mass at the Casa Santa Marta on Friday.
Galilee, the place of the first encounter with Jesus
The Scriptures, Pope Francis said in his homily, give us three words, three points of reference for the Christian journey. The first word is “memory.” The risen Jesus tells the disciples to go before Him to Galilee, and this was the first encounter with the Lord. Each one of us “has his own ‘Galilee,’” where Jesus shows Himself for the first time, where we have known Him and have had “this joy, this enthusiasm for following Him.” In order “to be a good Christian it is necessary to always have this memory of the first encounter with Jesus, or of subsequent encounters.” It is “the grace of memory” which in “the moment of trial gives me certainty.”
A gaze fixed in heaven, our feet in the world
The second point of reference is “prayer.” When Jesus ascended into heaven, the Pope explained, He did not break off His relationship with us: “Physically, yes, but He is always joined to us by interceding for us. He shows the Father His wounds, the price He has paid for us, for our salvation.” And so “we must ask for the grace to contemplate heaven, the grace of prayer, the relationship with Jesus in prayer, that in the moment He hears us, He is with us”:
“Then there is a third [point of reference]: “the world.” Jesus, before He left them—as we heard yesterday in the Gospel of the Ascension—says to the disciples: ‘Go into the world and make disciples.’ Go: the Christian’s place is in the world in order to proclaim the Word of Jesus, in order to say that we are saved, that He is come to give us grace, to bring us all with Him before the Father.”
Memory, prayer, and mission
This, the Pope said, is “the topography of the Christian spirit,” the three points of reference of our life: memory, prayer, mission; and the three words for our journey: Galilee, heaven, the world:
“A Christian must move in these three dimensions, and request the grace of memory: saying to the Lord, ‘Don’t let me forget the moment when You chose me, don’t let me forget the moment we met.’ Then, praying, looking to heaven because He is there, interceding. He intercedes for us. And then, going on mission: that is, not saying that everyone has to go to the foreign missions; [rather] going on mission is living and bearing witness to the Gospel, it is making Jesus known to all people. And doing so through witness and through the Word: because if I tell people about Jesus, and about the Christian life, and then live like a pagan, that won’t do. The mission will not go forward.”
The Christian life is joyful
If, instead, we live in memory, in prayer, and on mission, Pope Francis concluded, the Christian life will be beautiful, and also joyful:
“And this is the final word Jesus speaks to us today in the Gospel: ‘On that day, the day in which you live the Christian life in this way, you will know all things and no one will be able to take your joy away from you.” No one, because I have the memory of my encounter with Jesus; I have the certainty that Jesus is in heaven in this moment and He is interceding for me, He is with me; and I prayer and I have the courage to speak, to go out of myself, and to speak to others and bear witness with my life that the Lord is risen, He is alive. Memory, prayer, mission. May the Lord give us the grace to understand this topography of the Christian life and to go forward with joy, with that joy that no one can take from us.”