SECOND WORLD DAY OF THE POOR – 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time – 18 November 2018

SECOND WORLD DAY OF THE POOR – 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time – 18 November 2018

Excerpt From Pope Francis Message for the Second Annual World Day of the Poor

This poor man cried and the Lord heard himsecond annual world day of the poor - 18 nov 2018

6. The poor are the first to recognise God’s presence and to testify to His closeness in their lives. God remains faithful to His promise and even in the darkness of the night, He does not withhold the warmth of His love and consolation.   However, for the poor to overcome their oppressive situation, they need to sense the presence of brothers and sisters who are concerned for them and, by opening the doors of their hearts and lives, make them feel like friends and family. Only in this way can the poor discover “the saving power at work in their lives” and “put them at the centre of the Church’s pilgrim way” (Evangelii Gaudium, 198).
On this World Day, we are asked to fulfil the words of the Psalm:  “The afflicted shall eat and be satisfied” (Ps 22:26).   We know that in the Temple of Jerusalem, after the rites of sacrifice, a banquet was held.   It was this experience that, in many dioceses last year, enriched the celebration of the first World Day of the Poor.   Many people encountered the warmth of a home, the joy of a festive meal and the solidarity of those who wished to sit together at table in simplicity and fraternity.

I would like this year’s and all future World Days, to be celebrated in a spirit of joy at the rediscovery of our capacity for togetherness. Praying together as a community and sharing a meal on Sunday is an experience that brings us back to the earliest Christian community, described by the evangelist Luke in all its primitive simplicity:  “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers… And all who believed were together and had all things in common and they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as any had need” (Acts 2:42.44-45).

7. Countless initiatives are undertaken every day by the Christian community in order to offer closeness and a helping hand in the face of the many forms of poverty all around us.   Often too, our co-operation with other initiatives inspired not by faith but by human solidarity, make it possible for us to provide help that otherwise we would have been unable to offer.   The realisation that in the face of so much poverty, our capacity for action is limited, weak and insufficient, leads us to reach out to others so that, through mutual co-operation, we can attain our goals all the more effectively.   We Christians, are inspired by faith and by the imperative of charity but we can also acknowledge other forms of assistance and solidarity, that aim, in part, for the same goals, provided that we do not downplay our specific role, which is to lead everyone to God and to holiness. Dialogue between different experiences and humility in offering our co-operation, without seeking the limelight, is a fitting and completely evangelical response that we can give.
In the service of the poor, there is no room for competition.   Rather, we should humbly recognise that the Spirit is the source of our actions that reveal God’s closeness and His answer to our prayers.   When we find ways of drawing near to the poor, we know that the primacy belongs to God, who opens our eyes and hearts to conversion.   The poor do not need self-promoters but a love that knows how to remain hidden and not think about all the good it has been able to do.   At the centre must always be the Lord and the poor.   Anyone desirous of serving is an instrument in God’s hands, a means of manifesting His saving presence.   Saint Paul recalled this when he wrote to the Christians in Corinth who competed for the more prestigious charisms:  “The eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I have no need of you,’ nor again the head to the feet, ‘I have no need of you’” (1 Cor 12:21).   Paul makes an important point when he notes that the apparently weaker parts of the body are in fact the most necessary (cf. v. 22) and that those “we think less honourable we invest with the greater honour and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, which our more presentable parts do not require” (vv. 23-24). Paul offers the community a basic teaching about charisms but also about the attitude it should have, in the light of the Gospel, towards its weaker and needier members.   Far be it from Christ’s disciples to nurture feelings of disdain or pity towards the poor.   Instead, we are called to honour the poor and to give them precedence, out of the conviction that they are a true presence of Jesus in our midst.   “As you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me” (Mt 25:40).

8. Here we can see how far our way of life must be from that of the world, which praises, pursues and imitates the rich and powerful, while neglecting the poor and deeming them useless and shameful.   The words of the Apostle Paul invite us to a fully evangelical solidarity with the weaker and less gifted members of the body of Christ:  “If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honoured, all rejoice together” (1 Cor 12:26).   In his Letter to the Romans, Paul also tells us:  “Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.   Live in harmony with one another, do not be haughty but associate with the lowly” (12:15-16).   This is the vocation of each of Christ’s followers, the ideal for which we must constantly strive is ever greater conformity to the “mind of Jesus Christ” (Phil 2:5).

9. Faith naturally inspires a message of hope.   Often it is precisely the poor who can break through our indifference, born of a worldly and narrow view of life.   The cry of the poor, is also a cry of hope, that reveals the certainty of future liberation.   This hope is grounded in the love of God, who does not abandon those who put their trust in Him (cf. Rom 8:31-39).   As Saint Teresa of Avila writes in The Way of Perfection: “Poverty comprises many virtues.   It is a vast domain.   I tell you, whoever despises all earthly goods is master of them all” (2:5).   It is in the measure in which we are able to discern authentic good, that we become rich before God and wise in our own eyes and in those of others.   It is truly so.   To the extent that we come to understand the true meaning of riches, we grow in humanity and become capable of sharing.

10. I invite my brother bishops, priests and especially deacons, who have received the laying on of hands for the service of the poor (cf. Acts 6:1-7), as well as religious and all those lay faithful – men and women – who in parishes, associations and ecclesial movements, make tangible the Church’s response to the cry of the poor, to experience this World Day as a privileged moment of new evangelisation.   The poor evangelise us and help us each day, to discover the beauty of the Gospel.   Let us not squander this grace-filled opportunity.   On this day, may all of us feel that we are in debt to the poor, because, in hands outstretched to one another, a salvific encounter can take place, to strengthen our faith, inspire our charity and enable our hope, to advance securely on our path, towards the Lord who is to come.

From the Vatican, 13 June 2018


Sunday Reflection – 18 November – Reparation for outrages against the Most Blessed Sacrament – St Alphonsus Liguori

Sunday Reflection – 18 November

Reparation for outrages against the Most Blessed Sacrament

 St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787) Doctor of the Church

Meditate the following text written by Saint Alphonsus Maria and translated by Norman J. Muckermann, CSsR.    It is astonishingly relevant to the need for reparation, when one considers the current proliferation of so many outrages against the Most Blessed Sacrament.

The Sorrowful Heart of Jesus
It is impossible for us to appreciate how greatly afflicted the Heart of Jesus was for love of us and at the same time not be filled with pity for Him. . . . The principal sorrow affecting the Heart of Jesus was not so much knowing the torments and insults His enemies were preparing for Him.   Rather, it was seeing how ready we would be to reject His immense love.

Desecrations of the Sacred Host
Jesus distinctly saw all the sins which we would commit even after His sufferings, even after His bitter and ignominious death on the cross.   He foresaw, too, the insults which sinners would offer His Sacred Heart which He would leave on earth in the Most Holy Sacrament as proof of His love.   These insults are almost too horrible to mention:  people trampling the sacred hosts underfoot, throwing them into gutters or piles of refuse and even using them to worship the devil himself!

The Pledge of His Love
Even the knowledge that these and other defamations would happen did not prevent Jesus from giving us this great pledge of His love, the Holy Eucharist.   Jesus has an infinite hatred for sin, yet it seems that His great love for us even overcomes this bitterness.   Because of His love, He allows these sacrileges to happen in order not to deprive us of this Divine Food.   Should not this alone suffice to make us love a Heart that has loved us so much?

Jesus Forsaken on the Altar
What more could Jesus do to deserve our love?   Is our ingratitude so great that we will still leave Jesus forsaken on the altar, as so many are wont to do?   Rather, should we not unite ourselves to those few who gather to praise Him and acknowledge His divine presence?   Should we not melt with love, as do the candles which adorn the altars where the Holy Sacrament is preserved?   There the Sacred Heart remains burning with love for us.   Shall we not in turn burn with love for Jesus?”should we not melt with love - st alphonsus -18 nov 2018 sunday reflection

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY, The APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Thought for the Day– 18 November – The Feast of the Dedication of the Basilicas of Sts Peter and Paul

Thought for the Day– 18 November – The Feast of the Dedication of the Basilicas of Sts Peter and Paul

“The present feast therefore deserves to be more than a local solemnity, its extension to the Universal Church is a subject for the world’s gratitude.   Thanks to this Feast we can all make together in spirit today the pilgrimage, which our ancestors performed with such fatigue and danger, yet never thought they purchased at too high a price its holy joys and blessings.   “Heavenly mountains, glittering heights of the new Sion!”   There are the gates of our true country, the two lights of the immense world.   There Paul’s voice is heard like thunder;  there Peter withholds or hurls the bolt  . The former opens the hearts of men, the latter opens Heaven.   Peter is the foundation-stone, Paul the architect of the temple where stands the altar by which God is propitiated.   Both together form a single fountain, which pours out its healing and refreshing waters”

Bishop Venantius Fortunatus (c 530 – c 609)there-are-the-gares-of-our-true-country-bishop-venantius-fortunatus-c-530-c-609-18-nov-2018

Sts Peter and Paul, Pray for Us!sts peter and paul pray for us - 18 nov 2018


Quote of the Day – 18 November – The Memorial of St Rose Philippine Duchesne RSCJ (1769-1852)

Quote of the Day – 18 November – The Memorial of St Rose Philippine Duchesne RSCJ (1769-1852)

“Jesus, I live for You,
I labour for You,
I desire only You.
You in me and I in You;
You with me and I with You;
You all mine and I all Yours.”jesus i liove for you, i labour for you - st rose duchesne - 18 nov 2018

“I am where God wills me to be
and so I have found rest and security.
His wisdom governs me,
His power defends me,
His grace sanctifies me,
His mercy encompasses me,
His joy sustains me
and all will go well with me.”i am where god wills me to be - st rose philippine duchesne - 18 nov 2018

“Do not look back to the past,
nor forward to the future.
Claim only the present,
for it holds God’s will.”do not look back - st rose philippine duchesne - 18 nov 2018

“Let us bear our cross
and leave it to God
to determine the length
and the weight.”

“He will never let the trial surpass,
the strength He gives you
and at the very moment you think yourself
overwhelmed by sorrow,
He will lift you up and give you peace.”

St Rose Philippine Duchesne (1769-1852)let us bear our cross - he will never let the trial surpass the strength - st rose philippine duchesne - 18 nov 2018

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 18 November – Today’s Gospel: Mark 13:24–32

One Minute Reflection – 18 November – Today’s Gospel: Mark 13:24–32 – Thirty Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B – The Feast of the Dediciation of the Basilicas of Sts Peter and Paul and the Memorial of St Rose Philippine Duchesne RSCJ (1769-1852)

And then they will see the Son of man coming in clouds with great power and glory…Mark 13:26

REFLECTION – “From this it follows that, at His second coming, Jesus will rule over that land of which there remains much to possess.   But how blessed will be those who were His subjects from His first coming!   Truly, they will be loaded with gifts in spite of the resistance of so many enemies and the attacks of so many foes, they will receive… their share of the Promised Land.   But when submission has been carried out by force, on that day when “the last enemy, who is death, shall have been destroyed” (1Cor 15:26), there can be no more favour for those who refuse to submit.”…Origen (c 185-253) Father of the Churchmark 13 26 and then they will see - but how blessed will be those - origen - 18 nov 2018

PRAYER – Lord God, give Your Church the help of the Apostles Peter and Paul, who first brought it the knowledge of the faith, may they always obtain for it an increase of grace and continue to run with us on our journey home to You.   And may the prayers of your holy apostle of prayer, St Rose Philippine Duchesne, be a succour in our trials.   Through Jesus Christ our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, amen.sts-peter-and-paul-pray-for-us-18-nov-2018

st rose philippine duchesne pray for us no 2 - 18 nov 2018


Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on MERCY, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of .....

Quote/s of the Day – 17 November – The Memorial of St Elizabeth of Hungary – Apostle of Charity (1207-1231) – Speaking of: Charity/Mercy

Quote/s of the Day – 17 November – The Memorial of St Elizabeth of Hungary – Apostle of Charity (1207-1231)
Speaking of:  Charity/Mercy

As long as anyone has the means
of doing good to his neighbours
and does not do so,
he shall be reckoned a stranger
to the love of the Lord.

St Irenaeus (130-202) Father of the Churchas-long-as-anyone-has-the-means-st-irenaeus-8-oct-2018-speaking-of-seeking-the-good-samaritan

“Mercy imitates God and disappoints Satan.”mercy imittes god - st john chrysostom - 17 nov 2018

“No one has ever been accused for not providing ornaments
but for those who neglect their neighbour,
a hell awaits with an inextinguishable fire
and torment in the company of the demons.
Do not, therefore, adorn the church
and ignore your afflicted brother,
for he is the most precious temple of all.”

St John Chrysostom (347-407) Father & Doctor of the Churchno-one-has-ever-st-john-chrysostom-16-jan-2018

“Compassion, my dear Brother,
is preferable to cleanliness.
Reflect that with a little soap,
I can easily clean my bed covers
but even with a torrent of tears,
I would never wash from my soul,
the stain, that my harshness toward
the unfortunate would create.”

St Martin de Porres (1579-1639)compassion-my-dear-brother-st-martin-de-porres-3-nov-2018

“All our religion is but a false religion
and all our virtues are mere illusions
and we ourselves are only hypocrites
in the sight of God,
if we have not that universal charity for everyone –
for the good and for the bad,
for the poor and for the rich
and for all those who do us harm,
as much as those who do us good.”

St John Vianney (1786-1859)all-our-religion-is-but-a-false-religion-st-john-vianney-4-aug-2018

“Any friend of the poor, is a friend of God.”

Blessed John Sullivan SJ (1861-1933)any-friend-of-the-poor-is-a-friend-of-god-bl-john-sullivan-19-feb-2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on PRAYER, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 17 November – Today’s Gospel: Luke 18:1–8

One Minute Reflection – 17 November – Today’s Gospel: Luke 18:1–8 – Saturday of the Thirty Second week in Ordinary Time, Year B and The Memorial of St Elizabeth of Hungary (1207-1231)

“When the Son of man comes, will he find faith on earth?”...Luke 18:8

REFLECTION – “What more powerful incentive to prayer could be proposed to us than the parable of the unjust judge?   An unprincipled man, without fear of God or regard for other people, that judge nevertheless ended by granting the widow’s petition.   No kindly sentiment moved him to do so;  he was rather worn down by her pestering.   Now if a man can grant a request even when it is odious to him to be asked, how can we be refused by the one who urges us to ask?   Having persuaded us, therefore, by a comparison of opposites that “we ought always to pray and never lose heart,” the Lord goes on to put the question:  “Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, do you think he will find faith on earth?”
Where there is no faith, there is no prayer.   Who would pray for something he did not believe in?   So when the blessed Apostle exhorts us to pray he begins by declaring: “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”   But to show that faith is the source of prayer and the stream will not flow if its springs are dried up, he continues: “But how can people call on him in whom they do not believe?” (Rom 10:13-14).   We must believe, then, in order to pray and we must ask God, that the faith enabling us to pray, may not fail.   Faith gives rise to prayer and this prayer obtains, an increase of faith.”…St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor – Sermon 115, 1 ; PL 38, 655luke 18 8 - when the son of man comes - we must believe then, in order to pray - st augustine - 17 nov 2018

faith gives rise to prayer and this prayer - st augustine - 17 nov 2018

PRAYER – Holy Father, grant us a strong Faith!   Poor Your graces into our hearts that we may believe with all our hearts, minds and souls and that in believing, we may constantly raise our entire being to You in prayer and supplication, in prayer and adoration, in prayer and love.    May the intercession of St Elizabeth of Hungary, a woman of deep prayer from her youth, strengthen our perseverance.   Through Jesus Christ, our Lord in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God forever and ever, elizabeth of hungary pray for us - 17 nov 2018