Sunday, June 8, 2014

Full Text Message of Pope Francis at Peace Meeting "Lord God of peace, hear our prayer!" at Vatican


Vatican Gardens
08/06/2014





(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis Pope Francis delivered remarks to the Presidents of Palestine and Israel, Mahmoud Abbas and Shimon Peres, along with the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew I, and delegations representing Jews, ChristiansMuslims, all of whom were gathered in the Vatican Sunday evening to pray for peace in the Middle East and throughout the world. Below, please find the full text of the Holy Father's prepared remarks.
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Distinguished Presidents,
I greet you with immense joy and I wish to offer you, and the eminent delegations accompanying you, the same warm welcome which you gave to me during my recent pilgrimage to the Holy Land.
I am profoundly grateful to you for accepting my invitation to come here and to join in imploring from God the gift of peace.  It is my hope that this meeting will mark the beginning of a new journey where we seek the things that unite, so as to overcome the things that divide.
I also thank Your Holiness, my venerable Brother Bartholomaios, for joining me in welcoming these illustrious guests.  Your presence here is a great gift, a much-appreciated sign of support, and a testimony to the pilgrimage which we Christians are making towards full unity.
Your presence, dear Presidents, is a great sign of brotherhood which you offer as children of Abraham.  It is also a concrete expression of trust in God, the Lord of history, who today looks upon all of us as brothers and who desires to guide us in his ways.
This meeting of prayer for peace in the Holy Land, in the Middle East and in the entire world is accompanied by the prayers of countless people of different cultures, nations, languages and religions: they have prayed for this meeting and even now they are united with us in the same supplication.  It is a meeting which responds to the fervent desire of all who long for peace and dream of a world in which men and women can live as brothers and sisters and no longer as adversaries and enemies.
Dear Presidents, our world is a legacy bequeathed to us from past generations, but it is also on loan to us from our children: our children who are weary, worn out by conflicts and yearning for the dawn of peace, our children who plead with us to tear down the walls of enmity and to set out on the path of dialogue and peace, so that love and friendship will prevail.
Many, all too many, of those children have been innocent victims of war and violence, saplings cut down at the height of their promise.  It is our duty to ensure that their sacrifice is not in vain.  The memory of these children instils in us the courage of peace, the strength to persevere undaunted in dialogue, the patience to weave, day by day, an ever more robust fabric of respectful and peaceful coexistence, for the glory of God and the good of all.
Peacemaking calls for courage, much more so than warfare.  It calls for the courage to say yes to encounter and no to conflict: yes to dialogue and no to violence; yes to negotiations and no to hostilities; yes to respect for agreements and no to acts of provocation; yes to sincerity and no to duplicity.  All of this takes courage, it takes strength and tenacity.
History teaches that our strength alone does not suffice.  More than once we have been on the verge of peace, but the evil one, employing a variety of means, has succeeded in blocking it.  That is why we are here, because we know and we believe that we need the help of God.  We do not renounce our responsibilities, but we do call upon God in an act of supreme responsibility before our consciences and before our peoples.  We have heard a summons, and we must respond.  It is the summons to break the spiral of hatred and violence, and to break it by one word alone: the word “brother”.  But to be able to utter this word we have to lift our eyes to heaven and acknowledge one another as children of one Father.
            To him, the Father, in the Spirit of Jesus Christ, I now turn, begging the intercession of the Virgin Mary, a daughter of the Holy Land and our Mother.
            Lord God of peace, hear our prayer!
We have tried so many times and over so many years to resolve our conflicts by our own powers and by the force of our arms.  How many moments of hostility and darkness have we experienced; how much blood has been shed; how many lives have been shattered; how many hopes have been buried…  But our efforts have been in vain.
Now, Lord, come to our aid!  Grant us peace, teach us peace; guide our steps in the way of peace.  Open our eyes and our hearts, and give us the courage to say: “Never again war!”; “With war everything is lost”.  Instil in our hearts the courage to take concrete steps to achieve peace.
Lord, God of Abraham, God of the Prophets, God of Love, you created us and you call us to live as brothers and sisters.  Give us the strength daily to be instruments of peace; enable us to see everyone who crosses our path as our brother or sister.  Make us sensitive to the plea of our citizens who entreat us to turn our weapons of war into implements of peace, our trepidation into confident trust, and our quarreling into forgiveness.
Keep alive within us the flame of hope, so that with patience and perseverance we may opt for dialogue and reconciliation.  In this way may peace triumph at last, and may the words “division”, “hatred” and “war” be banished from the heart of every man and woman.  Lord, defuse the violence of our tongues and our hands.  Renew our hearts and minds, so that the word which always brings us together will be “brother”, and our way of life will always be that of: Shalom, Peace, Salaam!  Amen.

Full Text Speech of President Shimon Peres of Israel at Vatican Peace Meeting

Pope Francis and Israel's President Shimon Peres
08/06/2014

(Vatican Radio) The President of Israel, Shimon Peres, delivered remarks at the Invocation for Peace gathering in the Vatican on Sunday evening. Below, please find the full text, in English, of President Peres' prepared remarks.
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Your Holiness Pope Francis,
Your Excellency President Mahmoud Abbas,
[ACKNOWLEDGMENTS]
I have come from the Holy City of Jerusalem to thank you for your exceptional invitation. The Holy City of Jerusalem is the beating heart of the Jewish People. In Hebrew, our ancient language, the word Jerusalem and the word for peace share the same root. And indeed peace is the vision of Jerusalem.
As it is said in the Book of Psalms:
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
    “May those who love you be secure.
May there be peace within your walls
    and security within your citadels.”
For the sake of my family and friends,
    I will say, “Peace be within you.”
For the sake of the house of the Lord our God,
    I will seek your prosperity.
During your historic visit to the Holy Land, you moved us with the warmth of your heart, the sincerity of your intentions, your modesty, and your kind ways. You touched the people’s hearts – regardless of their faith or nation. You emerged as a bridge-builder of brotherhood and peace. We are all in need of the inspiration which accompanies your character and your way.
Thank you.
Two peoples – Israelis and Palestinians – still are aching for peace. The tears of mothers over their children are still etched in our hearts. We must put an end to the cries, to the violence, to the conflict. We all need peace. Peace between equals.
Your invitation to us to join you in this momentous ceremony to call for peace, here in the Vatican garden, in the presence of Jewish, Christian, Muslim, and Druze leaders, graciously reflects your vision of the aspiration we all share: Peace.
On this moving occasion, brimming with hope and full of faith, let us all raise with you, Your Holiness, a call for peace between religions, between nations, between communities, and between fellow men and women. Let true peace become our legacy soon and swiftly.
Our Book of Books commands upon us the way of peace, demands of us to toil for its realization.
It is said in the book of Proverbs:
“Her ways are ways of grace, and all her paths are peace.”
So too must our ways be. Ways of grace and peace. It is not by chance that Rabbi Akiva captured the essence of our Torah in one sentence: “Love your neighbor like thyself.” We are all equal before the Lord. We are all part of the human family. For without peace, we are not complete, and we have yet to achieve the mission of humanity.
Peace does not come easy. We must toil with all our strengths to reach it. To reach it soon. Even if it requires sacrifice or compromise.
The Book of Psalms tells us:
“Whoever loves life and desires to see many good days, keep your tongue from evil and your lips from telling lies. Turn from evil and do good, seek peace and pursue it.”
This is to say, we are commanded to pursue after peace. All year. Every day. We greet each other with this blessing. Shalom. Salam. We must be worthy of the deep and demanding meaning of this blessing. Even when peace seems distant, we must pursue it to bring it closer.
And if we pursue peace with perseverance, with faith, we will reach it.  
And it will endure through us, through all of us, of all faiths, of all nations, as it is written:
“They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.”
The soul is elated upon the reading of these verses of eternal vision. And we can – together and now, Israelis and Palestinians – convert our noble vision to a reality of welfare and prosperity. It is within our power to bring peace to our children. This is our duty, the holy mission of parents.
Let me end with a prayer:
He who makes peace in the heavens shall make peace upon us and upon all of Israel, and upon the entire world, and let us say Amen.
Shared from Radio Vaticana

Full Text Speech of President Mahmoud Abbas of Palestine at Vatican Peace Meeting

Pope Francis and Palestine's President Mahmoud Abbas
08/06/2014
(Vatican Radio) The President of Palestine, Mahmoud Abbas, delivered remarks to the participants in the Invocation for Peace here at the Vatican on Sunday evening. Below, please find the full text, in English, of President Abbas' prepared remarks.
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In the Name of God, the Most Gracious and the Most Merciful,
Your Holiness Pope Francis
Your Excellency President Shimon Peres,
Your Beatitudes, Honorable Sheiks and Rabbis
Ladies and Gentlemen
It is indeed a great honor for us to meet again with His Holiness Pope Francis in fulfillment of his kind invitation to relish his spiritual and noble presence, and listen to his opinion and crystal wisdom, which emanate from a sound heart, vibrant conscience, as well as an elevated ethical and religious sense. I thank your Holiness from the bottom of my heart for initiating this important gathering here in the Vatican. Simultaneously, we highly appreciate your visit to the Holy Land Palestine,  and in specific to our Holy city Jerusalem and to Bethlehem; the city of love and peace, and the cradle of Jesus Christ. The visit is a sincere expression of your belief in peace and a truthful attempt to achieve peace between Palestinians and Israelis.
Oh God, we ever praise you for making Jerusalem our gate to heaven. As said in the Holy Quran,
"Glory to Him who made His servant travel by night from the sacred place of worship to the furthest place of worship, whose surroundings We have blessed.‫" You made pilgrimage and prayer in it as the best acts the faithful can make in your praise, and made your truthful promise in your say: ‫ "Let them enter the Masjid as they did for the first time.‫"  God Almighty has spoken the truth.
O, Lord of Heaven and Earth, accept my prayer for the realization of truth, peace and justice in my country Palestine, the region, and the globe as a whole.
I beseech You, O Lord, on behalf of my people, the people of Palestine ‫- Moslems, Christians and Samaritans‫who are craving for a just peace, dignified living, and liberty, I beseech you, Oh Lord, to make prosperous and promising the future of our people, and freedom in our sovereign and independent state; Grant, O Lord, our region and its people security, safety and stability. Save our blessed city Jerusalem; the first Kiblah, the second Holy Mosque, the third of the two Holy Mosques, and the city of blessings and peace with all that surround it.
Reconciliation and peace, O Lord, are our goal. God in His Holy Book has addressed the faithful: “Make peace among you,‫"  Here we are, O God, inclined to peace. Make firm our steps and crown our efforts and endeavors with success. You are the promoter of virtue and preventer of vice, evil and aggression. You say and you are the most truthful, “And if they incline to peace, incline thou also to it, and trust in Allah. Lo! He is the Hearer, the Knower.” In the saying of Prophet Muhammad, ‫"Spread the peace among you.‫ "
Today, we reiterate after Jesus Christ addressing Jerusalem‫: "If only you had known the path of peace this day‫" (Luke 19:42). As well let us remember the words of Saint John Paul II when he said‫: ‫"If peace is realized in Jerusalem, peace will be witnessed in the whole world‫"Simultaneously, in our prayer today, we repeatedly call after those who advocate peace:‫  ‫"Blessed are the peace‫ makers,‫" and ‫"Call for the peace of Jerusalem‫"  as came in the Holy Scriptures.
Accordingly, we ask You, O Lord, for peace in the Holy Land, Palestine, and Jerusalem together with its people. We call on you to make Palestine and Jerusalem in particular  a secure land for all the believers, and a place for prayer and worship for the followers of the three monotheistic religions Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and for all those wishing to visit it as it is stated in the Holy Quran.   
O Lord, You are the peace and peace emanates from You. O God of Glory and Majesty grant us security and safety, and alleviate the suffering of my people in hometown and Diaspora.
O Lord, bring comprehensive and just peace to our country and region so that our people and the peoples of the Middle East and the whole world would enjoy the fruit of peace, stability and coexistence.
We want peace for us and for our neighbors. We seek prosperity and peace of mind for ourselves and for others alike. O Lord, answer our prayers and make successful our endeavors for you are most just, most merciful, Lord of the Worlds.
Shared from Radio Vaticana

Pope Francis Recites Regina Caeli for Pentecost


Pope Francis at Pentecost Mass
08/06/2014


(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis celebrated Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica on Sunday, the Solemnity of Pentecost. His homily focused on the Holy Spirit as Master of Life. The Holy Father identified four principal ways in which the Spirit is active in the life of every Christian and in the Church.
“The Holy Spirit teaches us the way,” said Pope Francis, “the Spirit reminds us of the words of Jesus and explains them to us, He enables us to pray and to call God ‘Father’, He enables us to speak to our fellows in fraternal dialogue and enables us to speak in prophecy.”

It was a theme to which Pope Francis returned in his remarks to the faithful gathered in the Square ahead of the Regina coeli. “The event of Pentecost,” said Pope Francis, “marks the birth of the Church and the Church’s public manifestation: two things strike us [about the Church]: the Church is one that surprises us and stirs things up.”
After the traditional prayer of Marian devotion, the Holy Father looked ahead to the much-anticipated encounter of prayer for peace in the Vatican, with the participation of the Presidents of Israel and Palestine, as well as the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. “I wish to thank all those who, personally and in community, have prayed and are praying for this meeting, and who will be united spiritually to our supplication,” said Pope Francis.
Shared From Radio Vaticana

Pope Francis Celebrates Pentecost Mass at Vatican - "The Holy Spirit teaches us" SHARE - Video/Homily

Vatican.va Release: (Internet Translation) Holy Mass on the Solemnity of Pentecost, 06/08/2014 [B0419] Mass for the Solemnity of Pentecost At 10:00 am today, Pentecost Sunday, the Holy Father Francis presided over the Holy Mass in the Vatican Basilica of the day. Concelebrated with the Holy Father, Cardinals, Archbishops and Bishops present in Rome.

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 During the celebration of the Eucharist, after the proclamation of the Holy Gospel, the Pope gave the homily which we publish below: Homily of the Holy Father "And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit" ( Acts 2:4). (Image Source: Google Images/Tony Riley/2013) Speaking to the Apostles at the Last Supper, Jesus said that, after his departure from this world, he would send them the gift of the Father , that the Holy Spirit (cf. Jn 15:26).
This promise is realized with power on the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit descended upon the disciples gathered in the Upper Room. That outpouring, though extraordinary, did not remain limited and only at that moment, but it is an event which has been renewed and renewed again. Glorified Christ at the right hand of the Father continues to fulfill his promise, sending the life-giving Spirit upon the Church, we teach and we remember and we do talk . The Holy Spirit teaches us : it is the interior Master. Guide us to the right path through life's situations.
He teaches us the way, the way. In the early days of the Church, Christianity was called "the Way" (cf. Acts 9:2), and Jesus is the Way. The Holy Spirit teaches us to follow him, to walk in his footsteps. More than a teacher of doctrine, the Holy Spirit is a teacher of life. It certainly is a part of life even knowing, knowing, but in the broader horizon of Christian existence and harmonious. The Holy Spirit reminds us , reminds us of all that Jesus said. And 'the living memory of the Church. And while it makes us remember, let us understand the words of the Lord.
 Remember this in the Spirit and through the Spirit not be reduced to a mnemonic fact, is an essential aspect of Christ's presence in us and in his Church. The Spirit of truth and charity reminds us of all that Christ has told us to enter more fully into the meaning of his words. We all have this experience: a moment, in any situation, there is another idea and then connects with a passage of Scripture ... And 'the Spirit that makes us do this way: the way of living memory of the Church. And this calls for a response from us: our response is more generous, more than the words of Jesus we become in life, they become attitudes, choices, actions, testimony. In essence, the Spirit reminds us of the commandment of love, and calls us to live it. A Christian without memory is not a true Christian is a Christian halfway, it's a man or a woman prisoner of the moment, he does not know to treasure its history, does not know how to read it and live it as a history of salvation. Instead, with the help of the Holy Spirit, we can interpret the inner inspirations and events of life in the light of the words of Jesus as we grow in the knowledge of the memory, the wisdom of the heart, which is a gift of the Spirit. May the Holy Spirit revives in us all the Christian memory! And on that day, with the Apostles, was the memory of the woman, the one who from the start meditating all those things in her heart. There was Mary, our Mother. That you help us in this way the memory. The Holy Spirit teaches us, reminds us, and - another trait - it makes us talk with God and with men. There are Christians dumb, dumb spirit; no, there is no place for it. We are talking to God in prayer . Prayer is a free gift that we receive; is dialogue with Him in the Holy Spirit, who prays in us and allows us to turn to God as Father, Daddy, Abba (cf. Rom 8:15, Gal 4:4); and this is not just a "way of saying," but the reality is, we are truly children of God "For all who are led by the Holy Spirit of God are sons of God" ( Rom 8:14) . There is talk in the act of faith. None of us can say, "Jesus is Lord" - as we have heard today - without the Holy Spirit. The Spirit makes us talk to men in fraternal dialogue . It helps to talk with others in recognizing their brothers and sisters; talking with friends, with tenderness, with gentleness, understanding the anxieties and hopes, the griefs and joys of others.
But there's more: the Holy Spirit makes us speak to men in the prophecy , that is making us "channels" humble and obedient to the Word of God Prophecy is made ​​with frankness, to show openly the contradictions and injustices, but always with meekness and constructive intent. Penetrated with the spirit of love, we can be signs and instruments of God who loves, serving, which gives life. To recap: the Holy Spirit teaches us the way; reminds us and tells us the words of Jesus; makes us pray to God the Father and say, makes us speak to men in fraternal dialogue and makes us speak in prophecy. On the day of Pentecost, when the disciples "were filled with the Holy Spirit," was the baptism of the Church, who was born "out" in "start" to proclaim to all people the Good News. The Mother Church, which begins to serve. Recall the other Mother, our Mother who departed promptly to serve.
The Mother Church and the Mother Mary, both virgins, both mothers, both women. Jesus was peremptory with the Apostles were not to leave Jerusalem until they have received from the power of the Holy Spirit (cf. Acts 1,4.8). Without Him there is no mission, there is no evangelization. For this reason, with the whole Church, our Mother the Catholic Church we call: Come, Holy Spirit! [00951-01.01] [Original text: Italian]

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