Monday, November 3, 2014

Saint November 4 : St. Charles Borromeo : Patron of Catechists, Catechumens, Seminarians

CATHOLIC ONLINE SOURCE: Charles was the son of Count Gilbert Borromeo and Margaret Medici, sister of Pope Pius IV. He was born at the family castle of Arona on Lake Maggiore, Italy on October 2. He received the clerical tonsure when he was twelve and was sent to the Benedictine abbey of SS. Gratian and Felinus at Arona for his education.
In 1559 his uncle was elected Pope Pius IV and the following year, named him his Secretary of State and created him a cardinal and administrator of the see of Milan. He served as Pius' legate on numerous diplomatic missions and in 1562, was instrumental in having Pius reconvene the Council of Trent, which had been suspended in 1552. Charles played a leading role in guiding and in fashioning the decrees of the third and last group of sessions. He refused the headship of the Borromeo family on the death of Count Frederick Borromeo, was ordained a priest in 1563, and was consecrated bishop of Milan the same year. Before being allowed to take possession of his see, he oversaw the catechism, missal, and breviary called for by the Council of Trent. When he finally did arrive at Trent (which had been without a resident bishop for eighty years) in 1556, he instituted radical reforms despite great opposition, with such effectiveness that it became a model see. He put into effect, measures to improve the morals and manners of the clergy and laity, raised the effectiveness of the diocesan operation, established seminaries for the education of the clergy, founded a Confraternity of Christian Doctrine for the religious instruction of children and encouraged the Jesuits in his see. He increased the systems to the poor and the needy, was most generous in his help to the English college at Douai, and during his bishopric held eleven diocesan synods and six provincial councils. He founded a society of secular priests, Oblates of St. Ambrose (now Oblates of St. Charles) in 1578, and was active in preaching, resisting the inroads of protestantism, and bringing back lapsed Catholics to the Church. He encountered opposition from many sources in his efforts to reform people and institutions.
He died at Milan on the night of November 3-4, and was canonized in 1610. He was one of the towering figures of the Catholic Reformation, a patron of learning and the arts, and though he achieved a position of great power, he used it with humility, personal sanctity, and unselfishness to reform the Church, of the evils and abuses so prevalent among the clergy and the nobles of the times. His feast day is November 4th.

Pope Francis ...Not in “wise and persuasive words”... Video Mass for deceased Bishops and Cardinals

Pope Francis celebrates Mass in remembrance of defunct Cardinals and Bishops - ANSA

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Monday, November 3, celebrated Mass in remembrance of all the Cardinals and Bishops who died during the past year.
During the Mass, which was held in St. Peter's Basilica, the Pope reminded us that thanks to the Resurrection of Jesus our faith is full of the joy of truth and eternal life.
Reflecting on the reading from the second Book of Maccabees in which the ruler of Jerusalem collects “two thousand silver drachmas for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection” (2 Mac 12, 43-46),  – the Pope said – that thanks to God’s Word this celebration is enlightened by our faith in the Resurrection.
The whole of Divine Revelation – he said – is the fruit of dialogue between God and his people, and faith too is bound to this dialogue that accompanies the people of God in history.
It is no wonder – Pope Francis said – that such a great, important and superhuman mystery as the Resurrection required such a long journey in time, up until the coming of Jesus Christ.
Jesus can say: “I am the Resurrection and the life” (John 11, 25) because in Him this mystery not only is fully revealed, through Him, for the first time, it becomes reality.
And recalling the Gospel of Mark that tells of the death of Jesus and of the empty tomb, the Pope pointed out that this episode represents the culmination of that journey in time: the event of the Resurrection that responds to the quest of God’s people, to the quest of every man and of the whole of humanity.
Each of us – Pope Francis said – is invited to be part of this event. We are called to stand before the Cross of Jesus, like Mary, like the women, like the centurion listening to his cry, to his last breath and finally to the silence; that silence that persists throughout Holy Saturday. And then we are called to go to the tomb to see that the large stone has been rolled back and to listen to the news: “He has been raised, he is not here” (Mark 16, 6). That is where the answer is, that is where the foundation is, the rock. Not in “wise and persuasive words” – the Pope said -  but in the living Word of the Cross and in the Resurrection of Christ.
This is what the Apostle Paul preaches – the Pope continued – the Resurrection of the crucified Jesus Christ. If He has not risen, our faith is empty and inconsistent. But seeing that He has risen, that He is the Resurrection, then our faith is full of truth and eternal life.
So – Pope Francis concluded – renewing tradition today we offer the Sacrifice of the Eucharist in suffrage of our brother Cardinals and Bishops who have died during the past twelve months. And our prayer is enriched by the sentiments, the memories, and the gratitude for the testimonies of people we have known, and with whom we have shared service within the Church. Many of their faces – he said – are before our eyes, and all of them are lovingly and mercifully looked upon by our heavenly Father.
And invoking the intercession of our celestial Mother for these beloved sons of Hers, Pope Francis prayed that they may relish the joy of the New Jerusalem together with all the faithful that have served on earth.
(Linda Bordoni)

Pope Francis "We see that there are two worms that eat the fabric of the Church, weakening her.." Homily

Pope Francis prepares to celebrate Mass Monday morning in the Santa Marta chapel - OSS_ROM

(Vatican Radio) Rivalry and vainglory are two worms that weaken the Church; instead we must act in a spirit of humility and harmony, without seeking our own interests said Pope Francis Monday morning at Mass in Casa Santa Marta.
Taking a cue from the Letter of St. Paul to the Philippians, the Pope noted that a bishop’s joy lies in seeing love, unity and harmony in his Church. "This harmony - he said - is a grace, which the Holy Spirit creates, but we must do our part, we must do everything to help the Holy Spirit to create this harmony in the Church". This is why St. Paul calls the Philippians to do nothing "out of selfishness or out of vainglory" or "fight against each other, just to be seen, to give themselves the air of being better than others". "You see – he noted - this is not just something new to today", but "goes way back".
"And how often in our institutions, in the Church, in the parish, for example, in schools, do we find that, no? Rivalry; the need to be seen; vainglory. We see that there are two worms that eat the fabric of the Church, weakening her. Rivalry and vainglory go against this harmony, this agreement. Instead of rivalry and vainglory, what does Paul recommend? ‘Rather, humbly regard others as more important than yourselves’. He felt this himself. He qualifies himself as ‘not worthy to be called an apostle,' the least [among others]. He even strongly humbles himself there. This was his sentiment: He thought others were superior to him".
The Pope then quoted St. Martin de Porres, a "humble Dominican friar," whom the Church remembers today: "His spirituality was in service, because he felt that all the others, even the greatest sinners, were superior to him. He really felt this". St. Paul then urges everyone not to look out for his own interests:  
"Look for the good of others. Serving others. But this is the joy of a bishop, when he sees his Church like this: the same sentiment, the same charity, being in unanimous accord. This is the air that Jesus wants in the Church. You can have a different opinion, that’s fine, but always within this air, this atmosphere: humility, charity, without despising anyone".
Referring to the Gospel of the day, Pope Francis added:
"It’s bad, when we find people who seek their own interests not service, not love, in Church institutions, in dioceses, in parishes. And this is what Jesus says in the Gospel: Do not seek your own interests; do not take the road of seeking repayment. 'Look, I have done this for you, but you have to do this for me’. And, with this parable, of inviting to dinner those who cannot repay you with anything. This is gratuity. When there is harmony in a Church, there is unity, no one seeks his or her own interests, and there is an attitude of gratitude. I do good; I don't strike a deal with good".
In conclusion, the Pope invited everyone to examine their conscience, "what is my parish like ... my community? Does it have this spirit? What is my institution like? Is this spirit, this sentiment of love, unanimity, concord, without selfishness or vainglory, of humility, is this vision that others are superior to us, in our parish, in our community ... and perhaps we will find that there is something to improve. Now, how can I help to improve this?

(Emer McCarthy)

Today's Mass Readings : Monday November 3, 2014

Monday of the Thirty-first Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 485

Reading 1PHIL 2:1-4

Brothers and sisters:
If there is any encouragement in Christ,
any solace in love,
any participation in the Spirit,
any compassion and mercy,
complete my joy by being of the same mind, with the same love,
united in heart, thinking one thing.
Do nothing out of selfishness or out of vainglory;
rather, humbly regard others as more important than yourselves,
each looking out not for his own interests,
but also everyone for those of others.

Responsorial Psalm PS 131:1BCDE, 2, 3

R. In you, O Lord, I have found my peace.
O LORD, my heart is not proud,
nor are my eyes haughty;
I busy not myself with great things,
nor with things too sublime for me.
R. In you, O Lord, I have found my peace.
Nay rather, I have stilled and quieted
my soul like a weaned child.
Like a weaned child on its mother’s lap,
so is my soul within me.
R. In you, O Lord, I have found my peace.
O Israel, hope in the LORD,
both now and forever.
R. In you, O Lord, I have found my peace.

Gospel LK 14:12-14

On a sabbath Jesus went to dine
at the home of one of the leading Pharisees.
He said to the host who invited him,
“When you hold a lunch or a dinner,
do not invite your friends or your brothers or sisters
or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors,
in case they may invite you back and you have repayment.
Rather, when you hold a banquet,
invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind;
blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you.
For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”