Sunday 24th May 2015

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Pope Francis: the gift of the Holy Spirit renews the earth

May 24, 2015 breaking Comments Off
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(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis against the backdrop of St Peter’s Basilica and dressed in scarlet vestments, celebrated Mass on Pentecost Sunday. In his homily, the Holy Father began by focusing on Sunday’s readings saying that, “the word of God, tells us that the Spirit is at work in individuals and communities filled with the Spirit. Expanding on this theme of the Spirit, Pope Francis said that, in the Gospel, Jesus promises his disciples that, when he has returned to the Father, the Holy Spirit will come to guide them into all the truth. Indeed he calls the Holy Spirit “the Spirit of truth”. Today’s world Pope Francis stressed, “needs men and women who are not closed in on themselves, but filled…Continue Reading

Pope Francis: Labour must be free, creative, participatory, and mutually-supportive

May 23, 2015 breaking Comments Off

(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis spoke to the Italian Christian Workers Associations (ACLI) on Saturday in the Vatican on occasion of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Association. In his speech to the Italian Christian Workers Associations – also known as the ACLI – Pope Francis exhorted those present to support a culture of dignified labour. He denounced the ‘god of money’ at the heart of our global economic system, promoting a culture of waste which throws away children and the elderly. Recalling his Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, the Holy Father focused on the need for a culture of ‘free, creative, participatory, and mutually-supportive labour’, by examining each term in depth. ‘True freedom of labour means that man, continuing…Continue Reading

At the General Audience Francis asks that fathers and mothers take back their full role as educators

May 22, 2015 breaking Comments Off

2015-05-21 L’Osservatore Romano “It is time for fathers and mothers to return from their exile – for they have exiled themselves from bringing up their children – and to fully resume their educational role”. This was the Pope’s declaration at the General Audience on Wednesday morning, 20 May. Continuing his series of catecheses on the family, he spoke to the crowds – many of them families – about the importance of parents as educators. The following is an English translation of the Pope’s catechesis which was delivered in Italian. Today, dear brothers and sisters, I would like to welcome you because I saw among you many families, Good morning to all the families! Let us continue to reflect on the…Continue Reading

Pope’s appeal for World Day of Prayer for Church in China

May 21, 2015 breaking Comments Off

(Vatican Radio) At his General Audience on Wednesday, Pope Francis made a special appeal for prayer for Catholics in China.   The Holy Father’s appeal comes ahead of Sunday’s feast of Our Lady, Help of Christians, celebrated throughout the world on May 24. Chinese Catholics have a special devotion to Mary, Help of Christians, whose feast day is marked with special devotions and pilgrimages, especially to the National Marian Shrine of Sheshan in Shanghai. In a letter to Chinese Catholics in 2007, Pope Benedict XVI expressed his hope that the liturgical feast of Our Lady, Help of Christians, might “become an occasion for the Catholics of the whole world to be united in prayer with the Church which is in…Continue Reading

General Audience: Parents’ Vocation To Educate Children

May 20, 2015 breaking Comments Off
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(Vatican Radio) In his catechesis at the General Audience on Wednesday, Pope Francis focused on the role of parents in the education of their children, which he called “an essential characteristic” of the family. The Holy Father noted the many difficulties facing parents today, especially those who find themselves in difficult situations. He spoke especially about the difficulties of separated couples, calling on them to “never, never, never take the children hostage!” He spoke out strongly against “intellectual critics” who have “silenced” parents in order to defend younger generations from real or imagined harmed. This has opened up a fracture between families and societies, leading to a crisis in the relationship between families and society. So-called experts have often taken…Continue Reading

Pope to Mideast nuns: pray for peace, persecuted

May 19, 2015 breaking Comments Off

(Vatican Radio) Saying he was giving them a “mission,”  Pope Francis has asked religious sisters from Bethlehem and the Middle East to pray for peace in the region and for two new Palestinian saints. 19th century Sister Miriam of Jesus Crucified Baouardy and Sister Marie-Alphonsine Ghattas were canonized in a big outdoor Mass presided by Pope Francis in St. Peter’s square on Sunday. Many of the Carmelite and Rosary sisters who had attended the canonization had flown into Rome from Jordan – on the same plane as Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas who was also present as the two Palestinian religious were made saints.   In receiving the visiting nuns in the Clementine Hall in the Apostolic Palace Monday, Pope Francis said the…Continue Reading

Pope: Christians must be witnesses to Jesus’ Resurrection

May 18, 2015 breaking Comments Off

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis canonized four women religious on Sunday, all 19th century nuns who worked in education. During Mass for the Seventh Sunday of Easter, Pope Francis canonized four women religious: Marie-Alphonsine and Mary of Jesus Crucified from the territory that made up historical Palestine; Jeanne Emilie de Villeneuve of France; and Maria Cristina of the Immaculate Conception from Italy. In his homily for the Mass, the Holy Father focused on the first reading, from Acts, which told how after the Ascension, the twelve Apostles chose a man to take the place of Judas. Even today, we base our faith on the testimony of the Twelve, who were witnesses of Jesus’ Resurrection. In fact, every disciple of Jesus “is…Continue Reading

Pope Francis: Homily for Mass and Canonization

May 17, 2015 breaking Comments Off
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(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis canonized four women religious on Sunday, all 19th century nuns who worked in education. St Marie-Alphonsine and St Mary of Jesus Crucified were from the territory that made up historical Palestine; St Jeanne Emilie de Villeneuve was a French nun and foundress; and St Maria Cristina of the Immaculate Conception came from Italy. “To abide in God and in His love, and thus to proclaim by our words and our lives the resurrection of Jesus, to live in unity with one another and with charity towards all – this is what the four women Saints canonized today did,” Pope Francis said in his homily. “Their luminous example challenges us in our lives as Christians.” Below, please…Continue Reading

Pope, Palestinian President express hopes for peace

May 16, 2015 breaking Comments Off

(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, meeting in the Vatican Saturday, expressed their hopes for a resumption of peace negotiations between Palestine and Israel and for “courageous decisions” for peace, with international support. A Vatican statement described the talks as “cordial,” and said the two sides “expressed great satisfaction with the agreement reached on the text of a comprehensive agreement  between the Parties concerning essential aspects of the life and activity of the Catholic Church in Palestine, which will be signed in the near future. ” Mahmoud Abbas will attend Sunday’s canonization Mass for two Palestinian Blessed, for which he thanked Pope Francis. Below, we publish a working translation of the Vatican statement: Today, 16 May 2015,…Continue Reading

Pope: Fearful and joyless communities are not Christian

May 15, 2015 breaking Comments Off

(Vatican Radio) Communities that are fearful and without joy are sick, they are not Christian communities. That was the message of Pope Francis at his morning Mass at the Casa Santa Marta. “Fear” and “joy” – those are the two words of the liturgy of the day. Fear, the Pope said, “is an attitude that harms us. It weakens us, it diminishes us. It even paralyzes us.” A person who is afraid “does nothing, doesn’t know what to do.” He is focused on himself, so that nothing bad will happen.” Fear “brings you to a self-centred selfishness and paralyzes you.” He continued, “A fearful Christian is a person who has not understood the message of Jesus”: “This is why Jesus…Continue Reading