Monday, April 27, 2015

Saint April 28 St. Gianna Beretta Molla - Patron of Unborn #Babies , #Mothers , and Physicians

St. Gianna Beretta Molla
MOTHER
Feast: April 28


Information:
Feast Day:April 28
Born:
October 4, 1922, Magenta, Italy
Died:April 28, 1962, Monza, Italy
Canonized:May 16, 2004 by Pope John Paul II
Patron of:mothers, physicians, preborn children
Saint Gianna Beretta Molla was born in Magenta (Milan), Italy, on 4 October 1922, the 10th of 13 children. Already as a young girl she willingly accepted the gift of faith and the clearly Christian education that she received from her excellent parents. As a result, she experienced life as a marvellous gift from God, had a strong faith in Providence and was convinced of the necessity and effectivneess of prayer.

She diligently dedicated herself to studies during the years of her secondary and university education, while, at the same time, applying her faith in generous apostolic service among the elderly and needy as a member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society. After earning degrees in medicine and surgery from the University of Pavia in 1949, she opened a medical clinic in Mesero (near Magenta) in 1950. She specialized in pediatrics at the University of Milan in 1952 and thereafter gave special attention to mothers, babies, the elderly and the poor.

While working in the field of medicine—which she considered a "mission" and practiced as such—she increased her generous service to Catholic Action, especially among the "very young" and, at the same time, expressed her joie de vivre and love of creation through skiing and mountaineering.      Through her prayers and those of others, she reflected on her  vocation, which she also considered a gift from God. Having chosen the vocation of marriage, she embraced it with complete enthusiasm and wholly dedicated herself "to forming a truly Christian family."

She became engaged to Pietro Molla and was radiant with joy and happiness during the time of their engagement, for which she thanked and praised the Lord. They were married on 24 September 1955 in St. Martin's Basilica in Magenta, and she became a happy wife. In November 1956, to her great joy, she became the mother of Pierluigi; in December 1957 of Mariolina; in July 1959 of Laura. With simplicity and equilibrium she harmonized the demands of mother, wife, doctor and her passion for life.

In September 1961, towards the end of the second month of pregnancy, she was touched by suffering and the mystery of      pain; she had developed a fibroma in her uterus. Before the required surgical operation, and conscious of the risk that her continued pregnancy brought, she pleaded with the surgeon to save the life of the child she was carrying, and entrusted herself to prayer and Providence. The life was saved, for which she thanked the Lord. She spent the seven months remaining until the birth of the child in incomparable strength of spirit and unrelenting dedication to her tasks as mother and doctor. She worried that the baby in her womb might be born in pain, and she asked God to prevent that.

A few days before the child was due, although trusting as always in Providence, she was ready to give her life in order to save that of her child: "If you must decide between me and the child, do not hesitate: choose the child—I insist on it. Save the baby." On the morning of 21 April 1962 Gianna Emanuela was born. Despite all efforts and treatments to save both of them, on the morning of 28 April, amid unspeakable pain and after repeated exclamations of "Jesus, I love you. Jesus, I love you," the mother died. She was 39 years old. Her funeral was an occasion of profound grief, faith and prayer. The body of the new blessed lies in the cemetary of Mesero (4 km. from Magenta).

Gianna was beatified by Pope John Paul II on April 24, 1994, and officially canonized as a saint on May 16, 2004. Gianna's husband Pietro and their last child, Gianna, were present at the canonization ceremony.

St. Gianna is a patron saint for mothers, physicians, and unborn children.
SOURCE: http://www.ewtn.com/saintsHoly/saints/G/stgiannaberettamolla.asp#ixzz1tKuFczLr

Saint April 28 St. Peter Chanel - Patron of #Oceania

St. Peter Chanel
PROTOMARTYR OF OCEANIA
Feast: April 28

Information:
Feast Day:April 28
Born:July 12, 1803, Cuet, near Belley, France
Died:April 28, 1841, Futuna Island
Canonized:12 June 1954, Rome by Pope Pius XII
Major Shrine:Futuna
Patron of:Oceania
On April 18, 1841, a band of native warriors entered the hut of Father Peter Chanel on the island of Futuna in the New Hebrides islands near New Zealand. They clubbed the missionary to death and cut up his body with hatchets. Two years later, the whole island was Catholic.
St. Peter Chanel's death bears witness to the ancient axiom that "the blood of martyrs is the seed of Christians." He is the first martyr from Oceania, that part of the world spread over the south Pacific, and he came there as the fulfillment of a dream he had had as a boy.
Peter was born in 1803 in the diocese of Belley, France. At the age of seven, he was a shepherd boy, but the local parish priest, recognizing something unusual in the boy, convinced his parents to let him study, in a little school the priest had started. From there Peter went on to the seminary, where it was said of him: "He had a heart of gold with the simple faith of a child, and he led the life of an angel."
He was ordained a priest and assigned to a parish at Crozet. In three years he had transformed the parish. In 1831, he joined the newly founded Society of Mary, since he had long dreamed of being a missionary; but for five years he was assigned to teach at the seminary in Belley. Finally, in 1836, his dream was realized, and he was sent with other Marists to the islands of the Pacific. He had to suffer great hardships, disappointments, frustration, and almost complete failure as well as the opposition of the local chieftain. The work seemed hopeless: only a few had been baptized, and the chieftain continued to be suspicious and hostile. Then, when the chief's son asked for baptism, the chief was so angry that he sent warriors to kill the missionary.
Peter's violent death brought about the conversion of the island, and the people of Futuna remain Catholic to this day. Peter Chanel was beatified in 1889 and canonized in 1954.
Thought for the Day: Success or failure is often not completely in our hands, and sometimes we have to face what seems almost certain failure. But success is not required of us, only fidelity. St. Peter Chanel's work ended in his own death in the face of what seemed total failure. Out of  that failure, God brought about the success Peter was seeking.
From 'The Catholic One Year Bible': . . . "Why are you looking in a tomb for someone who is alive? He isn't here! He has come back to life again! Don't you remember what he told you back in Galilee . . . that he would rise again the third day?"—Luke


source: http://www.ewtn.com/saintsHoly/saints/P/stpeterchanel.asp#ixzz1tKtv0cc7

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#Novena to Saint #JohnPaulII - Prayer and Litany - SHARE

NOVENA TO SAINT POPE JOHN PAUL II.

SHARED from Fr. Jim Chern at Montclair State University in New Jersey
NOVENA TO BLESSED JOHN PAUL II
Pope
Born in Poland - May 18, 1920
Ordained a Priest - November 1, 1946
Ordained a Bishop - Sept 28, 1958
Elected Pope - October 16, 1978
Entered Eternal Life - April 2, 2005
Beatified - May 1, 2011
Novena - October 13 - October 21
Feast Day: October 22
Canonized: April 26, 2015


FULL COVERAGE OF CANONIZATION LIKE http://fb.com/catholicnewsworld 

NOVENA TO BLESSED JOHN PAUL II

Priest: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
People: Amen

Priest: O Lord, open my lips.

People: And my mouth shall proclaim your praise.Priest: O God come to my assistance.
People: O Lord, make haste to help me.

Priest: Glory to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
People: As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be; world without end, AMEN



Pray: 1 Our Father; 1 Hail Mary; 1 Glory Be

Litany to the Venerable Servant of God John Paul II
(Leader in plain font; Responses in BOLD)

Kyrie eleison; Kyrie eleison
Christe eleison; Christe eleison
Kyrie eleison; Kyrie eleison
Christ hear us, Christ graciously hear us
God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us
Servant of God, John Paul II, pray for us
Perfect disciple of Christ, pray for us
Generously gifted with the gifts of the Holy Spirit; pray for us
Great apostle of Divine Mercy; pray for us
Faithful Son of Mary; pray for us
Totally dedicated to the Mother of God; pray for us
Persevering preacher of the Gospel; pray for us
Pilgrim Pope; pray for us
Pope of the Millennium; pray for us
Model of industry; pray for us
Model of priests; pray for us
Drawing strength from the Eucharist; pray for us
Untiring man of prayer; pray for us
Lover of the rosary; pray for us
Strength of those doubting their faith; pray for us
Desiring to unite all those who believe in Christ; pray for us
Converter of sinners; pray for us
Defender of the dignity of every person; pray for us
Defender of life from conception to natural death; pray for us
Praying for the gift of parenthood for the infertile; pray for us
Friend of children; pray for us
Leader of youth; pray for us
Intercessor of families, pray for us
Comforter of the suffering; pray for us
Manly bearing his pain; pray for us
Sower of divine joy; pray for us
Great intercessor for peace; pray for us
Pride of the Polish nation; pray for us
Brilliance of the Holy Church; pray for us
That we may be faithful imitators of Christ; pray for us
That we may be strong with the power of the Holy Spirit; pray for us
That we may have trust in the Mother of God; pray for us
That we may grow in our faith, hope, and charity; pray for us
That we may live in peace in our families; pray for us
That we may know how to forgive; pray for us
That we may know how to bear suffering; pray for us
That we may not succumb to the culture of death; pray for us
That we may not be afraid and courageously fight off various temptations; pray for us
That he would intercede for us the grace of a happy death; pray for us
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us
Pray for us, Venerable Servant of God John Paul II, That we may become worthy of the promises of Christ

PRAYER FOR THE CANONIZATION OF BLESSED JOHN PAUL II

O Blessed Trinity, we thank you for having graced the Church with Pope John Paul II and for allowing the tenderness of your Fatherly care, the glory of the cross of Christ, and the splendor of the Holy Spirit to shine through him. Trusting fully in your infinite mercy and in the maternal intercession of Mary, he has given us a living image of Jesus the Good Shepherd, and has shown us that holiness is the necessary measure of ordinary Christian life and the way of achieving eternal communion with you. Grant us, by his intercession, and according to your will the graces we implore, especially for [PAUSE TO ADD YOUR INTENTION] . . . we ask this, hoping that he will soon be numbered among your saints. AMEN

Conclusion
Make the Sign of the Cross as you say

MAY THE LORD BLESS US, PROTECT US FROM ALL EVIL AND BRING US TO EVERLASTING LIFE - AMEN

Blessed John Paul II - PRAY FOR US!

#BreakingNews Quake Death Toll at 4000 in #Nepal - Please PRAY

by Christopher Sharma
The toll is of tens of thousands of displaced and at least 20 thousand completely destroyed buildings. Catholic schools open to provide shelter to survivors. Rains hamper rescue operations. "Incalculable" the economic damage to the tourism sector, the primary source of income for the country.


Kathmandu (AsiaNews) – The  official death toll from the7.9 magnitude earthquake that struck two days ago Nepal has exceeded 3,500 confirmed victims. The national Caritas - along with Caritas Australia, India and Catholics from around the world - is engaged in disaster relief and assistance.
The Interior Ministry says that at least 20 thousand buildings were completely destroyed. Tens of thousands of people have lost their homes and are living in the open, still waiting for rescue packages. According to the National Emergency Operation Centre there are more than 6,500wounded. There is no more room in hospitals and doctors are being forced to operate in the open.
"We are facing a national emergency - said Minister Bamdev Gautam - and have requested the international community to help us in any way possible. We thank all Catholics and Christians, who along with many others are providing assistance in this moment of panic”.
According to the latest police reports (updated at 10 am today, local time) at least 1,000 people have lost their lives in Kathmandu alone. A further 111 died in the ancient cities of Bhaktapur and Lalitpur, both Unesco heritage sites.
Fr. Pius, director of Caritas Nepal, explains: "We are working together with other Caritas units to provide as much support as possible. We work closely with various religious groups and many volunteers, engaged in distributing food, water, blankets and medical first aid. "
Amrit Rai, principal of St. Xavier School, said: "Our school is open to provide shelter and meals to those in need."
Even the Protestant Churches are on the frontline with Catholics to help the population. Yesterday a Protestant church collapsed in Kathmandu following the second quake, killing 70 worshipers gathered  inside for Sunday services. Overall five Christian places of worship were damaged and at least 500 people were killed. Thousands are homeless.
Msgr. Paul Simick, apostolic vicar of Nepal, says: "We are praying for the country and we ask everyone to join us in expressing their support." Saturday 25, the Vatican secretary of state, Cardinal. Pietro Parolin, sent a telegram of condolence to the bishop from Pope Francis.
In addition to the Kathmandu Valley, the regions that have suffered the worst damage are Basantapur, Thamel, Nardevi and Jhochhen. Ancient monuments like the tower of Dharahara and squares (durbar square) of Basantapur and Patan were razed.
Heavy rains have made the rescue operation more difficult and endangered the lives of the survivors. Besides, doctors warn that stocks of vaccines and drugs against diarrhea and measles are becoming scarce.
The earthquake has killed dozens of people even in Chinese and Indian regions bordering Nepal which were affected by the earthquake two days ago.
At the Mount Everest base camp 210 climbers wereisolated. Some helicopters were sent to retrieve them. At least 25 people died swept away by avalanches caused by the earthquake; the wounded are over 60 and dozens are still missing.

According to the Nepalese authorities the economic damage is "incalculable". The country is a global tourist hub not only for the Himalayas, but also for the many monuments and ancient temples. In Bhaktapur, to date Nepal's best preserved ancient city, half of the houses were destroyed and 80 percent of the temples damaged. Shared from AsiaNewsIT

Latest #Vatican News and #PopeFrancis - #CatholicChurch

27-04-2015 - Year XXII - Num. 078 

Summary
- Queen Silvia of Sweden and her family visit the Pope
- The Pope praises the dynamism of the Church in Benin
- Ordination of nineteen new priests: imitate the Father, who never tires of forgiving
- Regina Coeli: contemplation and thanksgiving are not enough – we must follow the Good Shepherd
- Telegram for the earthquake in Nepal
- To the John Paul II Foundation: nurture solidarity with Christian fraternity
- Audiences
- Other Pontifical Acts
Queen Silvia of Sweden and her family visit the Pope
Vatican City, 27 April 2015 (VIS) – At 10 a.m. today, in the private Library of the Apostolic Palace, the Holy Father received in private audience Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden, accompanied by various family members and her entourage.
This afternoon, Her Majesty will participate in a workshop at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences organised by the Embassy of Sweden to the Holy See and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences on the theme of the fight against human trafficking, with particular attention to children. She will subsequently visit the Vatican Apostolic Library for the inauguration of the “distribution desk” realised with the contribution of the King Gustaf VI Adolf Foundation.
During the conversation, which took place mostly in Spanish, a language the Queen knows well, she informed the Pope of the activities she promotes in Sweden, especially for the benefit of children, and the Pope took the opportunity the express his gratitude for the welcome extended by Sweden to refugees and displaced persons. Among the gifts from Queen Silvia, the Pope received three small Swedish prayer books, also adapted for children. The religious education of her children has been particularly close to the sovereign's heart, and the Pope expressed his lively appreciation.
Princess Madeleine, with her husband and one year-old daughter Leonore, were also present in the Queen’s entourage, and the Pope therefore received the young family with particular affection.
The Pope praises the dynamism of the Church in Benin
Vatican City, 27 April 2015 (VIS) – The vitality of the Church, the pastoral ministry of the family, attention to priests and persons religious, and relations with the civil authorities are the central themes of the written discourse that the Pope handed to the bishops of the Episcopal Conference of Benin this morning, at the end of their “ad Limina” visit.
The Holy Father begins by praising the dynamism of parish life, the extensive participation of the faithful in ceremonies and the increase of vocations to the priesthood, but he also echoed the prelates' reports that it is at times superficial and lacking in solidity and strength. “Therefore, it is important that the desire for a profound knowledge of the Christian mystery not be the prerogative of an elite, but instead must inspire all faithful, as everyone is called to holiness. It is imperative that the Church in Benin resists and defeats the winds to the contrary that are rising throughout the world and do not fail to blow upon you too. I know that you are vigilant in the face of numerous ideological and media attacks. The spirit of secularisation is at work in your country too, although it is not yet very visible. Only a faith profoundly rooted in the heart of the faithful, and lived in a concrete way, will enable you to face this”.
One of the challenges to the Church in Benin is family pastoral ministry, to which the upcoming Synod will seek to respond. The Pope thanks the prelates of Benin for their prayers for this assembly, and for their mobilisation of the dioceses to participate in such important event. “I can only encourage you to continue with determination in the efforts you have undertaken to support families, both in their faith and in their daily life. I know that the pastoral ministry of marriage remains difficult, considering the real social and cultural situation of the people. However, do not be discouraged, but persevere tirelessly as the family in defence of the Catholic Church is a reality willed by God; it is a gift of God that brings joy, stability and happiness to people and to societies. It is an important challenge since the family, as the basic unit of both society and of the Church, is the place where authentic human and Gospel values are transmitted”.
The bishop of Rome then turns to the theme of the education of the younger generations, who must bring solidarity, justice and mutual respect to the society of the future. “It is necessary to promote in your country – without of course renouncing any of the Truth as revealed by the Lord – the encounter between cultures and dialogue between religions, especially with Islam. It is well known that Benin offers an example of harmony between the religions present in her territory. It is however wise to be vigilant, considering the current world climate, in order to conserve this fragile heritage. I am particularly pleased that an international colloquium on interreligious dialogue has been held, under the presidency of Cardinal Tauran, which was widely appreciated”.
“Your local Churches have a key role in promoting harmony and justice in the progress of the country”, Pope Francis observes. “But it is a role they also play in healthcare and human development. How much work is carried out in the name of the Gospel in your dioceses! While the global crisis is affecting many countries, it is necessary to go against the grain with courage, fighting against the throwaway culture that reaches everywhere and spreading the Gospel values of hospitality and encounter. The service of charity is a constitutive dimension of the mission of the Church, and it is an expression of her essence. However, it should be borne in mind that the spirit of the works accomplished by the Church has a specific nature that must be clearly identified: she never acts as a form of simple social aid, but rather as the manifestation of the tenderness and mercy of Jesus Himself, who tends to the wounds and weaknesses of His brothers. The joy of the Gospel is thus announced to humanity in the most effective way”.
The Pope thanks the priests of Benin for their generous service into the Gospel and mentions again the great number of vocations, a blessing from the Lord, and encourages the Church in Benin to share her resources with the Churches of other regions which are lacking. However, he writes, “when you send your priests to study or on missions elsewhere, do so with judgement, without forgetting the needs of your own Churches”.
The final paragraphs of the text are dedicated to the good relationship between the Church and the civil authorities in the country. “The voice of the Church is listened to and her action is appreciated. I invite you to continue to take your place fully in the public life of the country, especially in these times. I know you are engaged in constant work to encourage relations between the different components of society. I invite you to continue along this path, taking care not to enter directly into the political arena or party disputes. The conduct of public affairs remains the duty of the laity, whom you have the important duty of ceaselessly educating and encouraging”.
Ordination of nineteen new priests: imitate the Father, who never tires of forgiving
Vatican City, 26 April 2015 (VIS) – On the 52nd World Day of Prayer for Vocations, Pope Francis conferred priestly ordination to nineteen deacons: thirteen from the Roman diocesan seminaries (Pontifical Roman Major Seminary, “Redemptoris Mater” Diocesan College, Seminary of Our Lady of Divine Love) and six from other colleges. The Mass was concelebrated by the Holy Father and Cardinal Agostino Vallini, vicar general for the diocese of Rome, Archbishop Filippo Iannone, vicegerent, the auxiliary bishops, the superiors of the seminaries involved, and the deacons' parish priests.
During the liturgy of ordination, the Pope pronounced the homily for this rite, improvising some paragraphs. “These sons of ours are called to the order of the presbytery. It is good for us to reflect a little on the ministry to which they will be elevated within the Church. As you well know, the Lord Jesus is the sole Supreme Priest of the New Testament, but in Him also all the holy people of God is constituted as a priestly people. All of us! Nonetheless, among all His disciples, Jesus wishes to choose some in particular to publicly exercise priestly office on behalf of all mankind, thus continuing His personal mission as teacher, priest and pastor. … They have reflected on this, their vocation, and now they are to receive the ordination to the priesthood. And the bishop risks – risks! - and chooses them, just as the Father risked for each one of us”.
“And to you, who are about to be raised to the order of the presbytery, consider that by exercising the ministry of the Holy Doctrine you will participate in the mission of Christ, the sole master. Dispense to all that Word of God, that you yourselves have received with joy. Read and meditate diligently on the Word of the Lord so as to believe in what you have read, to teach what you have learnt in faith, to live what you have taught. And may this be the nourishment of the People of God; may your homilies never be dull; may your homilies arrive straight to the heart of the people as they come from your heart: what you say to them is what you have in your heart. In this way one offers the Word of the Lord, and in this way your doctrine will be joy and sustenance to Christ's faithful; the aroma of your life will be witness, as example edifies, whereas words without example are empty. They are ideas that never reach the heart and may even do harm; they do not do good”.
“When you celebrate Mass, acknowledge then what you are doing. Do not be hasty! Imitate what you celebrate – it is not an artificial rite. … With Baptism, you will add new faithful to the People of God. You must never refuse Baptism to those who ask for it. With the Sacrament of Penance you will forgive sins in the name of Christ and of the Church. And I, in the name of the Jesus Christ, the Lord, and His spouse, the Holy Church, I ask you never to tire of being merciful. You will be in the confessional to forgive, not to condemn! Imitate the Father, Who never tires of forgiving. With the holy oils you will bring relief to the sick. By celebrating the holy rites and raise at the different times of the day the prayers of praise and supplication, you will become the voice of the People of God and of the whole of humanity. Aware of having been chosen among men and constituted for their benefit to attend to matters of God, exercise Christ's priestly work with joy and sincere charity, intent solely on pleasing God and not yourselves. A priest who lives to please himself, who acts like a peacock, is unpleasant”.
“Finally, participating in Christ's mission as Head and Pastor in filial communion with your bishop, make efforts to unite the faithful in a single family – you are ministers of unity in the Church and in the family – to lead them to God the Father by means of Christ in the Holy Spirit”, he concluded, adding. “and always keep before your eyes the example of the Good Shepherd, Who did not come to be served, but to serve; not to remain in comfort, but to reach out to seek and save what was lost”.
Regina Coeli: contemplation and thanksgiving are not enough – we must follow the Good Shepherd
Vatican City, 26 April 2015 (VIS) – At the end of the celebration of Holy Mass for new vocations, Pope Francis appeared at the window of his study in the Vatican Apostolic Palace to pray this Sunday's Regina Coeli with the faithful gathered in the square. Beforehand the Holy Father spoke about the figure of Jesus, the Good Shepherd in Whom we contemplate God's Providence.
“The Father gave us the greatest and most precious gift He could give. It is the highest and purest love, as it is not motivated by any need, it is not conditioned by any calculation, it is not attracted by any interest to receive in exchange. Before this love of God, we experience immense joy and open ourselves up to the the acknowledgement of what we have freely received. But contemplating and giving thanks are not enough. We must also follow the Good Shepherd. In particular, those who have the mission of guides in the Church – priests, bishops, popes – are called upon to assume not the mentality of a manager but rather that of a servant, in imitation of Jesus Who, despoiling Himself, saved us with His mercy. The new priests of the diocese of Rome, whom I have had the joy of ordaining this morning in St. Peter's Basilica, are also called to this style of pastoral life”.
The Pope invited two of the newly ordained priests to appear at the window to greet the people and to thank the faithful for their ordination, and he asked that Our Lady might obtain for him, for the bishops and the priests of all the world the grace of serving the holy people of God through the joyful preaching of the Gospel, heartfelt celebration of the Sacraments and patient and gentle pastoral guidance”.
Following the Marian prayer, the Pope assured his closeness to those affected by the powerful earthquake in Nepal and neighbouring countries. “I pray for the victims, for the injured, and for all those who suffer as a result of this disaster”, he said. “May they have the support of fraternal solidarity. And let us pray to Our Lady to be close to them”.
Telegram for the earthquake in Nepal
Vatican City, 26 April 2015 (VIS) – Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin has sent a telegram of condolences on behalf of the Holy Father to Bishop Paul Simick, of the apostolic vicariate of Nepal, for the victims of the earthquake that struck the country and neighbouring India, Tibet and Bangladesh.
“His Holiness Pope Francis was deeply saddened to learn of the earthquake and the resultant loss of many hundreds of lives in Nepal, as well as in neighbouring countries. He expresses his solidarity with all affected by this disaster and assures those who grieve for deceased family members of his closeness in prayer. His Holiness commends the souls of the victims to the loving mercy of the Almighty and he offers encouragement to the civil authorities and emergency personnel as they continue their rescue efforts and assistance to those touched by this tragedy. Upon them all he invokes the blessings of the Almighty as a pledge of healing and consolation”.
To the John Paul II Foundation: nurture solidarity with Christian fraternity
Vatican City, 25 April 2015 (VIS) - “The canonisation of John Paul II has given a new impulse to your work in the service of the Church and evangelisation. It has rendered it, if possible, even more universal. And you offer a valuable contribution to ensuring that the spiritual legacy of this Pope saint may continue to make fertile the great field of the Church and to support her path through history”, said the Pope this morning to the members of the John Paul II Foundation, whom he received in audience in the Sala Clementina of the Apostolic Palace.
Francis thanked them for their initiatives in the educational field, recalling John Paul II's great love for the young. “You contribute to ensuring that his charism and his paternity continue to bear fruit”, he remarked, also emphasising the valuable opportunities they offer to priests and laypeople to enhance their formation, to be better prepared and to accompany communities in facing the cultural and pastoral challenges of our times.
“It is enough to think of one of the key words of his teaching, 'solidarity': a word that some people thought ought to become obsolete, but which in reality still retains all its prophetic force”, he continued. “Therefore, it is important that you, first of all, in your 'network' of the Circles of Friends of the Foundation, live this solidarity among yourselves, nurturing it continually with Christian fraternity, inspired in turn by prayer and obedience to the Word of God”.
Audiences
Vatican City, 27 April 2015 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father received in audience:
- Professor Riccardo Di Segni, Chief Rabbi of Rome;
- Archbishop Bruno Musaro, apostolic nuncio to the Arab Republic of Egypt and Holy See delegate at the League of Arab States;
- Archbishop Giorgio Lingua, apostolic nuncio to Cuba;
- Ten prelates of the Episcopal Conference of Benin, on their “ad Limina” visit:
- Archbishop Antoine Ganye of Cotonou;
- Bishop Eugene Cyrille Houndekon of Abomey;
- Bishop Francois Gnonhossou, S.M.A., of Dassa-Zoume;
- Bishop Victor Agbanou of Lokossa;
- Archbishop Pascal N'Koue of Parakou;
- Bishop Paul Kouassivi Vieira of Djougou;
- Bishop Clet Feliho of Kandi;
- Bishop Antoine Sabi Bio of Natitingou;
- Bishop Martin Adjou Moumouni of N'Dali;
- Rev. Jean-Benoit Gnambode, diocesan administrator of Porto Novo.
On Saturday, 25 April, the Holy Father received in audience:
- Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops;
- Guillermo Leon Escobar Herran, new ambassador of Colombia to the Holy See, presenting his letters of credence;
- Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto, apostolic nuncio to the Philippines;
- Msgr. Fernando Chica Arellano, Holy See permanent observer at the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (F.A.O.), International Fund for Agricultural Development (I.F.A.D.), and World Food Programme (W.F.P.);
- Bishop Antonio Augusto dos Santos Marto of Leiria-Fatima, Portugal.
Other Pontifical Acts
Vatican City, 27 April 2015 (VIS) – The Holy Father has appointed Bishop John C. Wester of Salt Lake City, U.S.A., as metropolitan archbishop of Sante Fe (area 158,296, population 1,473,000, Catholics 328,850, priests 207, permanent deacons 215, religious 269), U.S.A. He succeeds Archbishop Michael J. Sheehan, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese upon reaching the age limit was accepted by the Holy Father.

Today's Mass Readings : Monday April 27, 2015

Monday of the Fourth Week of Easter
Lectionary: 279


Reading 1ACTS 11:1-18

The Apostles and the brothers who were in Judea
heard that the Gentiles too had accepted the word of God.
So when Peter went up to Jerusalem
the circumcised believers confronted him, saying,
‘You entered the house of uncircumcised people and ate with them.”
Peter began and explained it to them step by step, saying,
“I was at prayer in the city of Joppa
when in a trance I had a vision,
something resembling a large sheet coming down,
lowered from the sky by its four corners, and it came to me.
Looking intently into it,
I observed and saw the four-legged animals of the earth,
the wild beasts, the reptiles, and the birds of the sky.
I also heard a voice say to me, ‘Get up, Peter. Slaughter and eat.’
But I said, ‘Certainly not, sir,
because nothing profane or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’
But a second time a voice from heaven answered,
‘What God has made clean, you are not to call profane.’
This happened three times,
and then everything was drawn up again into the sky.
Just then three men appeared at the house where we were,
who had been sent to me from Caesarea.
The Spirit told me to accompany them without discriminating.
These six brothers also went with me,
and we entered the man’s house.
He related to us how he had seen the angel standing in his house, saying,
‘Send someone to Joppa and summon Simon, who is called Peter,
who will speak words to you
by which you and all your household will be saved.’
As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them
as it had upon us at the beginning,
and I remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said,
‘John baptized with water
but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’
If then God gave them the same gift he gave to us
when we came to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ,
who was I to be able to hinder God?”
When they heard this,
they stopped objecting and glorified God, saying,
“God has then granted life-giving repentance to the Gentiles too.”

Responsorial PsalmPS 42:2-3; 43:3, 4

R. (see 3a) Athirst is my soul for the living God.
or:
R. Alleluia.
As the hind longs for the running waters,
so my soul longs for you, O God.
Athirst is my soul for God, the living God.
When shall I go and behold the face of God?
R. Athirst is my soul for the living God.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Send forth your light and your fidelity;
they shall lead me on
And bring me to your holy mountain,
to your dwelling-place.
R. Athirst is my soul for the living God.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Then will I go in to the altar of God,
the God of my gladness and joy;
Then will I give you thanks upon the harp,
O God, my God!
R. Athirst is my soul for the living God.
or:
R. Alleluia.

AlleluiaJN 10:14

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the good shepherd, says the Lord;
I know my sheep, and mine know me.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelJN 10:1-10

Jesus said:
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gate
but climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber.
But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.
The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice,
as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
When he has driven out all his own,
he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him,
because they recognize his voice.
But they will not follow a stranger;
they will run away from him,
because they do not recognize the voice of strangers.”
Although Jesus used this figure of speech,
they did not realize what he was trying to tell them.

So Jesus said again, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
I am the gate for the sheep.
All who came before me are thieves and robbers,
but the sheep did not listen to them.
I am the gate.
Whoever enters through me will be saved,
and will come in and go out and find pasture.
A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy;
I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly.”