Posted in MORNING Prayers, PAPAL MESSAGES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, St Pope JOHN PAUL, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 8 May – “We wish to see Jesus”

One Minute Reflection – 8 May – Wednesday of the Third Week of Easter, C, Gospel: John 6:35–40 and the Memorial of Blessed Clara Fey (1815-1894)

“This is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life”…John 6:40

REFLECTION – “We wish to see Jesus” (Jn 12:21).   This request, addressed to the Apostle Philip by some Greeks who had made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem for the Passover, echoes spiritually in our ears too…   Like those pilgrims of two thousand years ago, the men and women of our own day — often perhaps unconsciously — ask believers not only to “speak” of Christ but in a certain sense to “show” Him to them.   And is it not the Church’s task, to reflect the light of Christ in every historical period, to make His face shine also before the generations of the new millennium?

Our witness, however, would be hopelessly inadequate if we ourselves had not first contemplated His face…  The contemplation of Christ’s face, cannot fail to be inspired by all that we are told about Him, in Sacred Scripture, which from beginning to end, is permeated by His mystery, prefigured in a veiled way in the Old Testament and revealed fully in the New…  Remaining firmly anchored in Scripture, we open ourselves to the action of the Spirit (cf. Jn 15:26) from whom the sacred texts derive their origin, as well as to the witness of the Apostles (cf. Jn 15:27), who had a first-hand experience of Christ, the Word of life – they saw Him with their eyes, heard Him with their ears, touched Him with their hands (cf. 1 Jn 1:1).   What we receive from them is a vision of faith based on precise historical testimony.”…St John Paul II (1920-2005)Apostolic Letter “ Novo Millennio Inuente ”, §16-17this is the will of my father - john 6 40 - the contemplation of christ's face - st john paul 8 may 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Holy almighty God, in Your wisdom You created us and by Your providence You rule us.    Penetrate our inmost being with Your holy light, so that our way of life may always be one of faithful service, as we follow Your Son, who leads us to eternal life.    May the prayers of Mary our Mother and Blessed Clara Fey, help us to shine Your light on our neighbour.   Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.mother mary - pray for us - 6 may 2018.jpg

blessed clara fey pray for us 8 may 2019.jpg

Advertisements
Posted in EASTER, FRANCISCAN, PAPAL MESSAGES, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, St Pope JOHN PAUL, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 April – “Stay with us”

One Minute Reflection – 24 April – Wednesday of Easter week, Gospel: Luke 24:13–35 and the Memorial of St Benedict Menni (1841-1914)

“Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.”   So he went in to stay with them....Luke 24:29

REFLECTION – “When the disciples on the way to Emmaus asked Jesus to stay “with” them, He responded by giving them a much greater gift, through the Sacrament of the Eucharist He found a way to stay “in” them.
Receiving the Eucharist means entering into a profound communion with Jesus.   “Abide in me, and I in you” (Jn 15:4).   This relationship of profound and mutual “abiding” enables us to have a certain foretaste of heaven on earth.   Is this not the greatest of human yearnings?   Is this not what God had in mind when He brought about in history His plan of salvation?   God has placed in human hearts a “hunger” for His word (cf. Am 8:11), a hunger which will be satisfied only by full union with Him.   Eucharistic communion was given, so that we might be “sated” with God here on earth, in expectation of our complete fulfilment in heaven.
This special closeness which comes about in Eucharistic “communion” cannot be adequately understood or fully experienced apart from ecclesial communion…   The Church is the Body of Christ – we walk “with Christ” to the extent that we are in relationship “with his body”. Christ provided for the creation and growth of this unity, by the outpouring of His Holy Spirit.   And He Himself, constantly builds it up by His Eucharistic presence.   It is the one Eucharistic bread which makes us one body.   As the Apostle Paul states:  “Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread” (1Cor 10:17)…Saint John Paul II (1920-2005) – Apostolic Letter “ Mane nobiscum Domine ” §19-20luke 24 29 - stay with us - when the disciples on the way to emmaus - st john paul 24 april 2019 - wed easter octave.jpg

PRAYER – Stay with me, Lord, for it is necessary to have You present so that I do not forget You.   You know how easily I abandon You.
Stay with me Lord, because I am weak and I need Your strength, so that I may not fall so often.
Stay with me Lord, for You are my life and without You, I am without fervour.
Stay with me Lord, for You are my light and without you, I am in darkness.
Stay with me Lord, to show me Your will.
Stay with me Lord, so that I hear Your voice and follow You…. St Padre Pio of Pietrelcina (1887-1968) (Excerpt)  
And grant holy Father, that the prayers of St Benedict Menni, may assist us on our way. Through Christ, our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God with You, forever, amen.st benedict menni pray for us 24 april 2019.jpg

Posted in LENT 2019, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL MESSAGES

MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS FOR LENT 2019

MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS
FOR LENT 2019

“For the creation waits with eager longing
for the revealing of the children of God” (Rm 8: 19)the-holy-fathers-message-for-lent-2019-6 march -ash-wed-2018.jpg

Dear Brothers and Sisters

Each year, through Mother Church, God “gives us this joyful season when we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery with mind and heart renewed… as we recall the great events that gave us new life in Christ” (Preface of Lent I).   We can thus journey from Easter to Easter towards the fulfilment of the salvation we have already received as a result of Christ’s paschal mystery – “for in hope we were saved” (Rom 8:24).   This mystery of salvation, already at work in us during our earthly lives, is a dynamic process that also embraces history and all of creation.   As Saint Paul says, “the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God” (Rom 8:19).   In this perspective, I would like to offer a few reflections to accompany our journey of conversion this coming Lent.

1. The redemption of creation

The celebration of the Paschal Triduum of Christ’s passion, death and resurrection, the culmination of the liturgical year, calls us yearly to undertake a journey of preparation, in the knowledge that our being conformed to Christ (cf. Rom 8:29) is a priceless gift of God’s mercy.

When we live as children of God, redeemed, led by the Holy Spirit (cf. Rom 8:14) and capable of acknowledging and obeying God’s law, beginning with the law written on our hearts and in nature, we also benefit creation by cooperating in its redemption.   That is why Saint Paul says that creation eagerly longs for the revelation of the children of God; in other words, that all those who enjoy the grace of Jesus’ paschal mystery may experience its fulfilment in the redemption of the human body itself. When the love of Christ transfigures the lives of the saints in spirit, body and soul, they give praise to God. Through prayer, contemplation and art, they also include other creatures in that praise, as we see admirably expressed in the “Canticle of the Creatures” by Saint Francis of Assisi (cf. Laudato Si’, 87). Yet in this world, the harmony generated by redemption is constantly threatened by the negative power of sin and death.

2. The destructive power of sin

Indeed, when we fail to live as children of God, we often behave in a destructive way towards our neighbours and other creatures – and ourselves as well – since we begin to think more or less consciously that we can use them as we will. Intemperance then takes the upper hand: we start to live a life that exceeds those limits imposed by our human condition and nature itself. We yield to those untrammelled desires that the Book of Wisdom sees as typical of the ungodly, those who act without thought for God or hope for the future (cf. 2:1-11). Unless we tend constantly towards Easter, towards the horizon of the Resurrection, the mentality expressed in the slogans “I want it all and I want it now!” and “Too much is never enough”, gains the upper hand.

The root of all evil, as we know, is sin, which from its first appearance has disrupted our communion with God, with others and with creation itself, to which we are linked in a particular way by our body. This rupture of communion with God likewise undermines our harmonious relationship with the environment in which we are called to live, so that the garden has become a wilderness (cf. Gen 3:17-18). Sin leads man to consider himself the god of creation, to see himself as its absolute master and to use it, not for the purpose willed by the Creator but for his own interests, to the detriment of other creatures.

Once God’s law, the law of love, is forsaken, then the law of the strong over the weak takes over. The sin that lurks in the human heart (cf. Mk 7:20-23) takes the shape of greed and unbridled pursuit of comfort, lack of concern for the good of others and even of oneself. It leads to the exploitation of creation, both persons and the environment, due to that insatiable covetousness which sees every desire as a right and sooner or later destroys all those in its grip.

3. The healing power of repentance and forgiveness

Creation urgently needs the revelation of the children of God, who have been made “a new creation”. For “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Cor 5:17). Indeed, by virtue of their being revealed, creation itself can celebrate a Pasch, opening itself to a new heaven and a new earth (cf. Rev 21:1). The path to Easter demands that we renew our faces and hearts as Christians through repentance, conversion and forgiveness, so as to live fully the abundant grace of the paschal mystery.

This “eager longing”, this expectation of all creation, will be fulfilled in the revelation of the children of God, that is, when Christians and all people enter decisively into the “travail” that conversion entails. All creation is called, with us, to go forth “from its bondage to decay and obtain the glorious liberty of the children of God” (Rom 8:21). Lent is a sacramental sign of this conversion. It invites Christians to embody the paschal mystery more deeply and concretely in their personal, family and social lives, above all by fasting, prayer and almsgiving.

Fasting, that is, learning to change our attitude towards others and all of creation, turning away from the temptation to “devour” everything to satisfy our voracity and being ready to suffer for love, which can fill the emptiness of our hearts. Prayer, which teaches us to abandon idolatry and the self-sufficiency of our ego, and to acknowledge our need of the Lord and his mercy. Almsgiving, whereby we escape from the insanity of hoarding everything for ourselves in the illusory belief that we can secure a future that does not belong to us. And thus to rediscover the joy of God’s plan for creation and for each of us, which is to love him, our brothers and sisters, and the entire world, and to find in this love our true happiness.

Dear brothers and sisters, the “lenten” period of forty days spent by the Son of God in the desert of creation had the goal of making it once more that garden of communion with God that it was before original sin (cf. Mk 1:12-13; Is 51:3). May our Lent this year be a journey along that same path, bringing the hope of Christ also to creation, so that it may be “set free from its bondage to decay and obtain the glorious liberty of the children of God” (Rom 8:21). Let us not allow this season of grace to pass in vain! Let us ask God to help us set out on a path of true conversion. Let us leave behind our selfishness and self-absorption, and turn to Jesus’ Pasch. Let us stand beside our brothers and sisters in need, sharing our spiritual and material goods with them. In this way, by concretely welcoming Christ’s victory over sin and death into our lives, we will also radiate its transforming power to all of creation.

From the Vatican, 4 October 2018
Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi

Francis

Posted in LENT 2019, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL MESSAGES, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on FASTING, QUOTES on PRAYER, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 6 March – Ash Wednesday

One Minute Reflection – 6 March – Ash Wednesday

“Beware of practising your piety before men in order to be seen by them;  for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven.”…Mark 6:1

REFLECTION – “Fasting, that is, learning to change our attitude towards others and all of creation, turning away from the temptation to “devour” everything to satisfy our voracity and being ready to suffer for love, which can fill the emptiness of our hearts.
Prayer, which teaches us to abandon idolatry and the self-sufficiency of our ego and to acknowledge our need of the Lord and His mercy.   Almsgiving, whereby we escape from the insanity of hoarding everything for ourselves in the illusory belief that we can secure a future that does not belong to us.

And thus to rediscover the joy of God’s plan for creation and for each of us, which is to love Him, our brothers and sisters and the entire world and to find in this love our true happiness.

Let us not allow this season of grace to pass in vain!   Let us ask God to help us set out on a path of true conversion.   Let us leave behind our selfishness and self-absorption and turn to Jesus’ Pasch.   Let us stand beside our brothers and sisters in need, sharing our spiritual and material goods with them.   In this way, by concretely welcoming Christ’s victory over sin and death into our lives, we will also radiate its transforming power to all of creation.”- Pope Francis’ 2019 Lenten Messagemark 6 1 - beware of practising your piety - let us not let this season pass in vein - pope francis 6 march 2019 ash wed.jpg

PRAYER – Remember Lord, Your solemn covenant, renewed and consecrated by the Blood of the Lamb, so that Your people may obtain forgiveness for their sins and a continued growth in grace.   Support us Lord, as with this Lenten fast we begin our Christian warfare, so that in doing battle against the spirit of evil, we may be armed with the weapon of self-denial.   Heavenly Father, help us to fast for the right reasons.   Teach us to fast to curb illicit desires and to obtain closer union with You.   Help us Lord, during this Lenten season to cleave to You alone and grow in sanctity and charity.   Create in me a clean heart O Lord!   Through our Lord Jesus Christ in unity with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.o-that-today-ash-wednesday-6 march 2019 ash wed.jpg

Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL MESSAGES, Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, SAINT of the DAY, St Pope JOHN PAUL, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The HOLY EUCHARIST, WORLD DAYS of PRAYER

Thought for the Day – 16 February – May we all become Sacramentini!

Thought for the Day – 16 February – The Memorial of Blessed Joseph Allamano (1851–1926) – Founder of the Consolata Missionaries and Consolata Missionary Sisters and of World Mission Sunday

20 October 2019 will mark the 93rd World Mission Sunday and this year, the Holy Father has proclaimed October as as ‘Extraordinary Missionary Month’ to be marked and celebrated in the whole Church throughout the world and entrusted the mission of the Church in the world especially to St Pope John Paul II, as Pope Francis made the announcement he said – “On the day of the liturgical memory of Saint John Paul II, missionary Pope, we entrust to his intercession the mission of the Church in the world.’

The first World Mission Day was celebrated in October 1926, eight months after the death of Blessed Joseph Allamano.   This is not a simple coincidence because Joseph Allamano dedicated a great deal of his time and influence during the last years of his life, to the effort of creating awareness in the Church, about the need for a World Mission Day to be celebrated once a year by all Catholics.

This was in line with his vision that Missions and missionary work were the duty of every baptised believer, each one according to his abilities and possibilities but none exempted.   Allamano did not see here on earth the fulfilment of his efforts for the creation of this day of prayer and commitment but witnessed it from heaven.

He can be compared to Fidelis of Sigmaringen (1577-1622), a saint he especially admired and proposed as Patron to his Missionaries, who in his time insisted tirelessly on the need to create in Rome a Congregation for the Evangelisation of the Peoples and died a martyr of the faith in April 1622, three months before the creation of the Congregation of Propaganda Fide (for the Propagation of the Faith).

For Allamano it was not simply a question of awakening the missionary zeal in others, he always looked at his faith, whatever the circumstances, as a faith to be shared with the entire world.   He would subscribe especially to the Pope Benedict’s message statement that “every Christian community is born missionary and it is exactly on the basis of the courage to evangelise that the love of believers for their Lord is measured”. (Pope Benedict’s Message 2001 – To All the Churches of the World)

The sources of Joseph’s personal tenderness for all, for the whole world, were Our Lady Consolata and the Eucharist.   The love towards our Mother Mary and the Eucharist made him speak words belonging uniquely to him.   He became progressive resulting in marked changes in his attitude and behaviour  . It was a life shaped by Mary and Jesus. Familiar to us, the sons and daughters of Allamano, are these very words, ‘First Saints and then Missionaries.’

For sure, Blessed Allamano was an excellent father in human relationships.   Who was the source of his inspiration and wisdom?   Indeed, it is only from the Eucharist that Joseph Allamano found God in His essence, the pure love.   Therefore, Allamano became a witness of the pure love, Jesus.   Ultimately, he was inspired to send missionaries to be ‘SACRAMENTINI’ as he would say.   He sent them to ‘love the Eucharist’.

My prayer, is that Blessed Joseph Allamano, priest and missionary for the entire world, may bless all our parish communities and all the Catholics of the world, that our zeal and determination may be increased, to make our treasure, the Gospel and the Holy Eucharist, our Lord and Saviour, available to all.

May we all become Sacramentini!  Amenbl joseph allamano pray for us no 2 - 16 feb 2019.jpg

Posted in MARIAN PRAYERS, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN TITLES, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL MESSAGES, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, WORLD DAYS of PRAYER

Message of the Holy Father for the 27th World Day of the Sick – 11 February 2019

Message of the Holy Father

“You received without payment, give without payment” (Mt 10:8)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

“You received without payment; give without payment” (Mt 10:8).   These are the words spoken by Jesus when sending forth his apostles to spread the Gospel, so that his Kingdom might grow through acts of gratuitous love.

On the XXVII World Day of the Sick, to be solemnly celebrated on 11 February 2019 in Calcutta, India, the Church – as a Mother to all her children, especially the infirm – reminds us that generous gestures like that of the Good Samaritan are the most credible means of evangelisation.   Caring for the sick requires professionalism, tenderness, straightforward and simple gestures freely given, like a caress that makes others feel loved.

Life is a gift from God.   Saint Paul asks: “What do you have that you did not receive?” (1 Cor 4:7).   Precisely because it is a gift, human life cannot be reduced to a personal possession or private property, especially in the light of medical and biotechnological advances that could tempt us to manipulate the “tree of life” (cf. Gen 3:24).

Amid today’s culture of waste and indifference, I would point out that “gift” is the category best suited to challenging today’s individualism and social fragmentation, while at the same time promoting new relationships and means of cooperation between peoples and cultures.   Dialogue – the premise of gift – creates possibilities for human growth and development capable of breaking through established ways of exercising power in society.   “Gift” means more than simply giving presents – it involves the giving of oneself and not simply a transfer of property or objects.   “Gift” differs from gift-giving because it entails the free gift of self and the desire to build a relationship.   It is the acknowledgement of others, which is the basis of society.   “Gift” is a reflection of God’s love, which culminates in the incarnation of the Son and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

Each of us is poor, needy and destitute.   When we are born, we require the care of our parents to survive and at every stage of life we remain in some way dependent on the help of others.   We will always be conscious of our limitations, as “creatures”, before other individuals and situations.   A frank acknowledgement of this truth keeps us humble and spurs us to practice solidarity as an essential virtue in life.

Such an acknowledgement leads us to act responsibly to promote a good that is both personal and communal.   Only if we see ourselves, not as a world apart but in a fraternal relationship with others, can we develop a social practice of solidarity aimed at the common good.   We should not be afraid to regard ourselves as needy or reliant on others, because individually and by our own efforts, we cannot overcome our limitations.   So we should not fear, then, to acknowledge those limitations, for God himself, in Jesus, has humbly stooped down to us (cf. Phil 2:8) and continues to do so, in our poverty, He comes to our aid and grants us gifts beyond our imagining.

In light of the solemn celebration in India, I would like to recall, with joy and admiration, the figure of Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta – a model of charity who made visible God’s love for the poor and sick.   As I noted at her canonisation, “Mother Teresa, in all aspects of her life, was a generous dispenser of divine mercy, making herself available for everyone through her welcome and defence of human life, of those unborn and those abandoned and discarded… She bowed down before those who were spent, left to die on the side of the road, seeing in them their God-given dignity; she made her voice heard before the powers of this world, so that they might recognise their guilt for the crime – the crimes! – of poverty they created.   For Mother Teresa, mercy was the ‘salt’ which gave flavour to her work, it was the ‘light’ that shone in the darkness of the many who no longer had tears to shed for their poverty and suffering.   Her mission to the urban and existential peripheries remains for us today an eloquent witness to God’s closeness to the poorest of the poor” (Homily, 4 September 2016).

Saint Mother Teresa helps us understand that our only criterion of action must be selfless love for every human being, without distinction of language, culture, ethnicity or religion.   Her example continues to guide us by opening up horizons of joy and hope for all those in need of understanding and tender love, and especially for those who suffer.

Generosity inspires and sustains the work of the many volunteers who are so important in health care and who eloquently embody the spirituality of the Good Samaritan.   I express my gratitude and offer my encouragement to all those associations of volunteers committed to the transport and assistance of patients, and all those that organise the donation of blood, tissues and organs.   One particular area in which your presence expresses the Church’s care and concern is that of advocacy for the rights of the sick, especially those affected by pathologies requiring special assistance.   I would also mention the many efforts made to raise awareness and encourage prevention.   Your volunteer work in medical facilities and in homes, which ranges from providing health care to offering spiritual support, is of primary importance.   Countless persons who are ill, alone, elderly or frail in mind or body benefit from these services.   I urge you to continue to be a sign of the Church’s presence in a secularised world.   A volunteer is a good friend with whom one can share personal thoughts and emotions, by their patient listening, volunteers make it possible for the sick to pass from being passive recipients of care to being active participants in a relationship that can restore hope and inspire openness to further treatment.   Volunteer work passes on values, behaviours and ways of living born of a deep desire to be generous.   It is also a means of making health care more humane.

A spirit of generosity ought especially to inspire Catholic healthcare institutions, whether in the more developed or the poorer areas of our world, since they carry out their activity in the light of the Gospel.   Catholic facilities are called to give an example of self-giving, generosity and solidarity in response to the mentality of profit at any price, of giving for the sake of getting and of exploitation over concern for people.

I urge everyone, at every level, to promote the culture of generosity and of gift, which is indispensable for overcoming the culture of profit and waste.   Catholic healthcare institutions must not fall into the trap of simply running a business, they must be concerned with personal care more than profit.   We know that health is relational, dependent on interaction with others and requiring trust, friendship and solidarity.   It is a treasure that can be enjoyed fully, only when it is shared.   The joy of generous giving is a barometer of the health of a Christian.

I entrust all of you to Mary, Salus Infirmorum.   May she help us to share the gifts we have received in the spirit of dialogue and mutual acceptance, to live as brothers and sisters attentive to each other’s needs, to give from a generous heart and to learn the joy of selfless service to others.   With great affection, I assure you of my closeness in prayer, and to all I cordially impart my Apostolic Blessing.

Vatican City, 25 November 2018
Solemnity of our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe.
Francis27th world day of prayer 11 feb 2019 pope francis message.jpg

Posted in MARIAN TITLES, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL MESSAGES, SAINT of the DAY, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD, WORLD DAYS of PRAYER

One Minute Reflection – 11 February – 27th World Day of Prayer for the Sick

One Minute Reflection – 11 February – Memorial of Our Lady of Lourdes and the 27th World Day of Prayer for the Sick

And wherever he came, in villages, cities, or country,
they laid the sick in the market places
and besought him that they might touch
even the fringe of his garment
and as many as touched it were made well...Mark 6:56and wherever he came - mark 6 56 11 feb 2019 world day of the sick.jpg

REFLECTION – “Only if we see ourselves, not as a world apart but in a fraternal relationship with others, can we develop a social practice of solidarity aimed at the common good.   We should not be afraid to regard ourselves as needy or reliant on others, because individually and by our own efforts, we cannot overcome our limitations.   So we should not fear, then, to acknowledge those limitations, for God himself, in Jesus, has humbly stooped down to us (cf. Phil 2:8) and continues to do so, in our poverty, He comes to our aid and grants us gifts beyond our imagining.”…Pope Francis, Message for the 27th World Day of the Sick27th world day of the sick - only if we see ourselves - pope francis 11 feb 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Grant us, O merciful God, protection in our weakness, that we, who keep the Memorial of the Immaculate Mother of God, may, with the help of her intercession, rise up from our iniquities. Grant, we pray that our lives may be gifts to all those who cry out in pain. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, forever and ever, amen.our-lady-of-lourdes-pray-for-us-11-feb-2018.jpg