Thursday, January 5, 2017

LIVE #PopeFrancis Celebrates #Epiphany Solemnity Holy Mass at Vatican - FULL Video - Homily

The Holy Father celebrates Holy Mass for the Solemnity of the Epiphany of Our Lord.
The FULL TEXT Homily of His Holiness Pope Francis 
Below is an English translation of the Pope's homily.
“Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews?  For we have observed his star in the East, and have come to worship him” (Mt 2:2).
With these words, the Magi, come from afar, tell us the reason for their long journey: they came to worship the newborn King.  To see and to worship.  These two actions stand out in the Gospel account.  We saw a star and we want to worship.
These men saw a star that made them set out.  The discovery of something unusual in the heavens sparked a whole series of events.  The star did not shine just for them, nor did they have special DNA to be able to see it.  As one of the Church Fathers rightly noted, the Magi did not set out because they had seen the star, but they saw the star because they had already set out (cf. Saint John Chrysostom).  Their hearts were open to the horizon and they could see what the heavens were showing them, for they were guided by an inner restlessness.  They were open to something new. 
            The Magi thus personify all those who believe, those who long for God, who yearn for their home, their heavenly homeland.  They reflect the image of all those who in their lives have not let their hearts become anesthetized.
            A holy longing for God wells up in the heart of believers because they know that the Gospel is not an event of the past but of the present.  A holy longing for God helps us keep alert in the face of every attempt to reduce and impoverish our life.  A holy longing for God is the memory of faith, which rebels before all prophets of doom.  That longing keeps hope alive in the community of believers, which from week to week continues to plead: “Come, Lord Jesus”.
            This same longing led the elderly Simeon to go up each day to the Temple, certain that his life would not end before he had held the Saviour in his arms.  This longing led the Prodigal Son to abandon his self-destructive lifestyle and to seek his father’s embrace.  This was the longing felt by the shepherd who left the ninety-nine sheep in order to seek out the one that was lost.  Mary Magdalen experienced the same longing on that Sunday morning when she ran to the tomb and met her risen Master.  Longing for God draws us out of our iron-clad isolation, which makes us think that nothing can change.  Longing for God shatters our dreary routines and impels us to make the changes we want and need.   Longing for God has its roots in the past yet does not remain there: it reaches out to the future.  Believers who feel this longing are led by faith to seek God, as the Magi did, in the most distant corners of history, for they know that there the Lord awaits them.  They go to the peripheries, to the frontiers, to places not yet evangelized, to encounter their Lord.  Nor do they do this out of a sense of superiority, but rather as beggars who cannot ignore the eyes of those who for whom the Good News is still uncharted territory.
            An entirely different attitude reigned in the palace of Herod, a short distance from Bethlehem, where no one realized what was taking place.  As the Magi made their way, Jerusalem slept.  It slept in collusion with a Herod who, rather than seeking, also slept.  He slept, anesthetized by a cauterized conscience.  He was bewildered, afraid.  It is the bewilderment which, when faced with the newness that revolutionizes history, closes in on itself and its own achievements, its knowledge, its successes.  The bewilderment of one who sits atop his wealth yet cannot see beyond it.  The bewilderment lodged in the hearts of those who want to control everything and everyone.  The bewilderment of those immersed in the culture of winning at any cost, in that culture where there is only room for “winners”, whatever the price.  A bewilderment born of fear and foreboding before anything that challenges us, calls into question our certainties and our truths, our ways of clinging to the world and this life.  Herod was afraid, and that fear led him to seek security in crime: “You kill the little ones in their bodies, because fear is killing you in your heart” (SAINT QUODVULTDEUS, Sermon 2 on the Creed: PL 40, 655). 
            We want to worship.  Those men came from the East to worship, and they came to do so in the place befitting a king: a palace.  Their quest led them there, for it was fitting that a king should be born in a palace, amid a court and all his subjects.  For that is a sign of power, success, a life of achievement.  One might well expect a king to be venerated, feared and adulated.  True, but not necessarily loved.  For those are worldly categories, the paltry idols to which we pay homage: the cult of power, outward appearances and superiority.  Idols that promise only sorrow and enslavement.
            It was there, in that place, that those men, come from afar, would embark upon their longest journey.  There they set out boldly on a more arduous and complicated journey.  They had to discover that what they sought was not in a palace, but elsewhere, both existentially and geographically.  There, in the palace, they did not see the star guiding them to discover a God who wants to be loved.  For only under the banner of freedom, not tyranny, is it possible to realize that the gaze of this unknown but desired king does not abase, enslave, or imprison us.  To realize that the gaze of God lifts up, forgives and heals.  To realize that God wanted to be born where we least expected, or perhaps desired, in a place where we so often refuse him.  To realize that in God’s eyes there is always room for those who are wounded, weary, mistreated and abandoned.  That his strength and his power are called mercy.  For some of us, how far Jerusalem is from Bethlehem! 
            Herod is unable to worship because he could not or would not change his own way of looking at things.  He did not want to stop worshiping himself, believing that everything revolved around him.  He was unable to worship, because his aim was to make others worship him.  Nor could the priests worship, because although they had great knowledge, and knew the prophecies, they were not ready to make the journey or to change their ways. 
            The Magi experienced longing; they were tired of the usual fare.  They were all too familiar with, and weary of, the Herods of their own day.  But there, in Bethlehem, was a promise of newness, of gratuitousness.  There something new was taking place.  The Magi were able to worship, because they had the courage to set out.  And as they fell to their knees before the small, poor and vulnerable Infant, the unexpected and unknown Child of Bethlehem, they discovered the glory of God. 

3 Kings Cake Recipe for Epiphany - Traditional #German #Epiphany #Recipe


A Traditional Cake for Epiphany, German recipe

INGREDIENTS 
 2 Cups and 3 Tablespoons of Flour 
1.4 Ounces of Yeast (Fresh)
1/3 Cup of Sugar
2/4 Cup of Milk
7 Tablespoons of melted Butter
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 Lemon chopped
1/2 teaspoon of Cardamon
2 Eggs (1 Separated)
1/2 Cup of Rum soaked Raisins
1 Cup of dried chopped Fruit

Instructions
In a large mixing bowl pour in 3/4 of the flour leaving a hole in the middle. Mix the yeast with a pinch of sugar and some of the lukewarm milk. Place the yeast mixture in the hole and cover with a towel. Let sit for 1/4 an hour in a warm place. Afterwards, add the butter, salt, lemon, cardamon, eggs, milk and flour to the mixture. Knead dough until smooth.
Once a ball of dough is formed add the remaining raisins and fruit. Knead entire mixture and make a log and divide into four balls.
Place in a greased spring-form pan with a tube. Cover with a cloth and let rise for 20 minutes in a warm place. Brush dough with a beaten egg yolk and place in the oven at 350 F. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool cake before removing from pan.
When cooled frost the cake with 2 Tablespoons of Icing Sugar mixed with 2 Tablespoons of Lemon Juice. Decorate with candied cherries.
Traditionally, a golden crown is placed on top of the cake.

Saint January 6 ; St. André Bessette : #Brother : Builder of the #Oratory to St. Joseph

BIOGRAPHY OF SAINT BROTHER ANDRÉ
 Holy Cross Brother, known as "Frere Andre," has been associated with thousands of cures. He was the founder of St. Joseph's Oratory in Montreal, Canada, which is the world's largest shrine in honor of St. Joseph. He died at the age of 91, then it was estimated that close to a million people came to the Oratory to pay their last respects.
1845 AUGUST 09, 1845 Birth of Alfred Bessette on Grand-Bois Lane in Saint-Grégoire d’Iberville, son of Isaac Bessette and Clothilde Foisy. The very next day, he is baptised in the “chapel/rectory” of Saint-Grégoire Parish by Father Pierre-Albert Sylvestre. 1850 The Bessette family moves to Farnham, Québec. Tragically, Isaac dies, crushed under an axed tree, February 20, 1855. His wife Clothilde dies on November 20, 1857.Alfred, aged 12, moves to Saint-Césaire and receives the Sacrament of Confirmation by Bishop Prince, Bishop of Saint-Hyacinthe. A photo of Alfred is taken for the occasion. Alfred works on a farm, and tries his hand (without much success) at the trades of 1863 Alfred emigrates to the United States and works in textile mills in Connecticut and possibly in Massachusetts and in Rhode Island. 1867 He returns to Quebec. After a stop in Sutton and then in Farnham, he settles at Saint-Césaire where he connects with the pastor, Father André Provençal who introduces him to the idea of religious life. DECEMBER 27, 1870 Alfred becomes a postulant of the Congregation of Holy Cross in Montreal. On December 27, he enters the novitiate; from then on he is known as Brother André, CSC, in memory of Father André Provençal. 1871 DECEMBER 20, 1871 He is given the obedience of “doorkeeper, infirmarian, and lamp tender” at Collège Notre-Dame. His duties also include running errands, caring for the garden, cutting students’ hair, managing the laundry and working as general factotum. 1872 AUGUST 22, 1872 He makes first vows. 1874 FEBRUARY 02, 1874 Brother André pronounces his final vows at the age of 28 and a half years. 1878 He greets sick people in the lobby of the school, provoking scorn, complaints, and controversy. 1878 Publication in a French magazine of anecdotal cures by a Brother André using oil taken from a lamp. 1896 Purchase by the Congregation of Holy Cross of the mountain property across the street from the Collège. Brother André dreams of putting up a wayside chapel there, dedicated to Saint Joseph. 1904 OCTOBER 19, 1904 Blessing of a modest chapel: Saint Joseph’s Oratory of Mount Royal is founded. 1909 Assigned as full-time caretaker of Saint Joseph’s Oratory, Brother André leaves the Collège after almost 40 years of service. From 1909 to 1936, he greets thousands at his Oratory office, who come seeking hope, reassurance, or even healing. JANUARY 06, 1937 Death of Brother André at 91 years of age, at the hospital in Saint-Laurent. A million persons file past Brother André’s coffin from January 6 to 12. NOVEMBER 07, 1940 Opening the cause for the beatification of Brother André. NOVEMBER 09, 1960 Decree concerning the introduction of the cause in the Roman Tribunal, by Pope John XXIII. JUNE 12, 1978 Paul VI declares Brother André “Venerable”, thereby recognizing the heroicity of the virtues of the Servant of God. 1982 MAY 23, 1982 Beatification of Brother André in Rome, by Pope John Paul II. 2010 OCTOBER 17, 2010 The solemn Rite of Canonization of Brother André in Rome. Pope Benedict XVI introduces Saint André Bessette to the Universal Church. Text shared from Oratory of St. Joseph

#PopeFrancis ""Begin again, yes, but begin again without having lost the ability to dream.." to #Earthquake Victims


(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis met on Thursday with hundreds of Italians from the archdiocese of Spoleto-Norcia, devastated by a series of powerful earthquakes over the past six months. The central Italian town of Amatrice and surrounding areas were hit by a 6.3 magnitude quake in August which killed nearly 300 people. Other powerful quakes caused major damage in the same region on October 26th and 30th, with the latest tremors reported in Spoleto last Monday, January 2nd.
Around 800 people, led by their Bishop Renato Boccardo and local civic authorities, travelled to Rome for the audience in the Paul VI hall. Many of them had lost their houses, livelihoods and friends or family members in the largest earthquakes which reduced parts of many towns and villages to piles of rubble.  
Regional reconstruction
Pope Francis sat and listened as a survivor and a local parish priest described the immense suffering of people, now seeking to rebuild their shattered communities. In his off-the-cuff response, the Pope said the worst thing to do in such circumstances was to offer a prepared sermon, but instead he reflected on the work of physical, mental and spiritual reconstruction that has been taking place throughout the region.
Healing hands
Pope Francis spoke of the wounds which have affected those who’ve lost their loved ones and the importance of crying together as they seek to heal the pain. He spoke too of the healing hands of doctors, nurses, firemen and all those who worked together to pull survivors from the rubble or offer help to those most in need.
Sharing and solidarity
Finally the Pope spoke of the spirit of solidarity and nearness which is vital for the reconstruction process. While everyone affected by the earthquakes will continue to bear scars, he said it’s important to find the courage to dream again.  Sharing and remaining close together, he said, makes us more courageous and more human as we face this daunting task.
Amatrice visit
The Pope’s words come three months after he made a surprise visit to Amatrice and two neighbouring towns to meet with survivors and relatives of victims. During the visit, he said he had not come to make speeches, but simply to be close to those suffering and to pray with all those affected by the earthquakes.

#HolyMass Etiquette: #Guide of 10 Things To Do And Not Do In Mass to SHARE with Video!


Holy Mass Etiquette: Guide of 10 Things To Do And Not Do In Mass
  1. Hour Fast before Mass. The law of the Church says that one should fast for 1 hour before receiving Holy Communion. Water and medicine can be consumed any time. This is to prepare to receive Jesus in the Eucharist. 
  2. No Food and Drink in Church.  Water is used by the priest or choir and water for those who are ill. Exceptions are made for small children.
  3. Chewing gum in church is not appropriate. Chewing gum breaks your fast, and  is considered impolite in a formal setting.
  4. Make the Sign of the Cross with Holy Water on entering and leaving the church. This sign is a reminder of our Baptism, and thus members of Christ’s Church.  (Touch your forehead, heart, left shoulder and right shoulder while saying In the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit.)
  5. Dress modestly and suitably. Wear your Sunday Best to Chuch.  Sleeveless shirts, mini-skirts, extremely tight clothing, shorts, see-through clothes and low-cut blouses are not appropriate. 
  6. Cell phones should never be used in Mass. The exceptions are emergencies. If you need to, please walk out of church to do so. It is appropriate to use the phone for readings or prayers, but try to be discreet.
  7. When entering and leaving Church, genuflect toward the Tabernacle. Christ is present in the Tabernacle. With the touch of our right knee to the floor, we adore our Lord and God in the Eucharist. If someone is physically unable to genuflect, then bow. During Mass, if you pass in front of the altar or tabernacle, bow reverently.
  8. Please be quiet in church. Once you enter the sanctuary –try to be silent. If you must talk do so as quietly and briefly as possible. Remember that your conversation might be disturbing someone in prayer.
  9. Bow before receiving Holy Communion. Show your respect with a bow of the head or genuflexion. This is an traditional practice that has continued until this day.
  10. Do not leave early. We should stay to the end of the procession and the hymn that accompanies it.

#PopeFrancis "...but entrusting oneself to the mercy and tenderness of the Lord reviving the fidelity to our choices and the freshness of our “first love” on Vocations - FULL TEXT


Dear Brothers and Sisters! At the end of your Congress on vocational pastoral care, organized by the Office of the Italian Episcopal Conference, I am happy to be able to receive you and meet with you. I thank Monsignor Galantino for his courteous words and I congratulate you for the commitment with which you carried forward this annual appointment, in which the joy of fraternity and the beauty of the different vocations is shared.
Opening before us is the horizon and path towards the Synodal Assembly of 2018, on the theme “Young People, Faith and Vocational Discernment.” The total and generous “Yes” of a dedicated life is similar to a source of water, hidden for a long time in the depth of the earth, which waits to gush forth and flow outside, in a rivulet of purity and freshness. Young people today are in need of a source of fresh water to quench themselves and then continue on their path of search. “Young people have the desire of a great life. The encounter with Christ, letting oneself be gripped and guided by His love, widens the horizon of existence and gives a solid hope that does not disappoint” (Encyclical Lumen Fidei, 53).
Your service, with its style of vocational proclamation and accompaniment is also placed on this horizon. Such a commitment requires passion and a sense of gratuitousness. The passion of personal involvement, in being able to take care of the lives that are assigned to you, as cases that enclose a precious treasure to be protected, and the gratuitousness of a service and ministry in the Church that calls for great respect of those of whom you are companions on the way. It is the commitment to seek their happiness, and this goes well beyond your preferences and expectations. I make my own Pope Benedict XVI’s words: “Be sowers of trust and hope. Profound, in fact, is the sense of loss that today’s youth often lives. Not rarely, human words are deprived of future and prospect, deprived also of meaning and wisdom. […] Yet, this can be the hour of God” (Address to the participants in the European Congress on Vocational Pastoral Care, July 4, 2009).
To be credible and to be attuned to young people, it is necessary to favor the way of listening, of being able to “lose time” in taking up their questions and desires. Your testimony will be all the more persuasive if you are able to tell with joy and truth the beauty, the astonishment and wonder of being in love with God, of being men and women who live with gratitude their choice of life to help others and leave an unheard of and original mark in history. This requires not being disorientated by external solicitations, but entrusting oneself to the mercy and tenderness of the Lord reviving the fidelity to our choices and the freshness of our “first love” (cf. Revelation 2:5).
The priority of the vocational proclamation is not the efficiency of what we do, but rather the privileged attention we give to vigilance and discernment. It is to have a look that is able to gush positivity in the human and spiritual events we meet; an astonished and grateful heart in face of the gifts that individuals bear in themselves, putting in the light their potentialities more than their limitations, the present and the future in continuity with the past.
Today, there is need of a vocational pastoral of wide horizons and of the breath of communion, capable of reading the reality as it is with courage, with the efforts and resistances, recognizing the signs of generosity and of beauty of the human heart. There is the urgency to bring back within Christian communities a new “vocational culture.” ‘The capacity to dream and to have great desires, the astonishment that enables one to appreciate beauty and to choose it for its intrinsic value, because it renders life good and true, is also a part of this vocational culture’ (Pontifical Work for Vocations, New Vocations for a New Europe, December 8, 1997, 13B).
Dear brothers and sisters do not tire of repeating to yourselves: “I am a mission” and not simply “I have a mission.” ‘It is necessary to recognize oneself as marked by the fire of such a mission to illumine, bless, vivify, relieve, heal and liberate’ (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, 273). To be on permanent mission requires courage, audacity, imagination and the desire to go beyond, of going further. In fact, “Arise, go and fear not”was the theme of your Congress. This helps you to remember the many vocation stories in which the Lord invited those called to go out of themselves to be a gift for others; He entrusts a mission to them and assures them: “Fear not, for I am with you’ (Isaiah 41:10). His blessing gives constant and impassioned encouragement to be able to go beyond the fears that shut one in on oneself and paralyze every desire of the good. It is good to know that the Lord takes charge of our frailty, puts us back on our feet to rediscover, day after day, the infinite patience to begin again.
Let us feel ourselves spurred by the Holy Spirit to identify with courage new ways in the proclamation of the Gospel of vocation, to be men and women that, as watchmen (cf. Psalm130:6), are able to receive the rays of light of a new dawn, in a renewed experience of faith and of passion for the Church and for the Kingdom of God. May the Spirit push us to be capable of a loving patience, which does not fear the inevitable slowness and resistances of the human heart.
I assure you of my prayer, and you, please, do not forget to pray for me. Thank you.
[Original text: Italian] [Working Translation of Pope’s prepared text by ZENIT]

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Thursday January 5, 2017 - #Eucharist


Memorial of Saint John Neumann, Bishop
Lectionary: 208


Reading 11 JN 3:11-21

Beloved:
This is the message you have heard from the beginning:
we should love one another,
unlike Cain who belonged to the Evil One
and slaughtered his brother.
Why did he slaughter him?
Because his own works were evil,
and those of his brother righteous.
Do not be amazed, then, brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.
We know that we have passed from death to life
because we love our brothers.
Whoever does not love remains in death.
Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer,
and you know that no murderer has eternal life remaining in him.
The way we came to know love
was that he laid down his life for us;
so we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.
If someone who has worldly means
sees a brother in need and refuses him compassion,
how can the love of God remain in him?
Children, let us love not in word or speech
but in deed and truth.

Now this is how we shall know that we belong to the truth
and reassure our hearts before him
in whatever our hearts condemn,
for God is greater than our hearts and knows everything.
Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us,
we have confidence in God.

Responsorial PsalmPS 100:1B-2, 3, 4, 5

R. (2a) Let all the earth cry out to God with joy.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
serve the LORD with gladness;
come before him with joyful song.
R. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy.
Know that the LORD is God;
he made us, his we are;
his people, the flock he tends.
R. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
his courts with praise;
Give thanks to him; bless his name.
R. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy.
The LORD is good:
the LORD, whose kindness endures forever,
and his faithfulness, to all generations.
R. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy.

Alleluia

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
A holy day has dawned upon us.
Come, you nations, and adore the Lord.
Today a great light has come upon the earth.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelJN 1:43-51

Jesus decided to go to Galilee, and he found Philip.
And Jesus said to him, "Follow me."
Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the town of Andrew and Peter.
Philip found Nathanael and told him,
"We have found the one about whom Moses wrote in the law,
and also the prophets, Jesus, son of Joseph, from Nazareth."
But Nathanael said to him,
"Can anything good come from Nazareth?"
Philip said to him, "Come and see."
Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him,
"Here is a true child of Israel.
There is no duplicity in him."
Nathanael said to him, "How do you know me?"
Jesus answered and said to him,
"Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree."
Nathanael answered him,
"Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel."
Jesus answered and said to him,
"Do you believe
because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree?
You will see greater things than this."
And he said to him, "Amen, amen, I say to you,
you will see the sky opened and the angels of God
ascending and descending on the Son of Man."