Wednesday, February 15, 2017

#PopeFrancis "God loves me. I am certain that God loves me." #Audience - FULL TEXT + Video


The Holy Father’s Catechesis
Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!
As children we are taught that it is not a good thing to boast. In my land, we call those who boast “peacocks.” And that is right, because to boast of what one is or of what one has, in addition to being a certain pride, also betrays a lack of respect in relations with others, especially towards those who are more unfortunate than us. In this passage of the Letter to the Romans, the Apostle Paul surprises us, in as much as for a good two times he exhorts us to boast. Hence, of what is it right to boast? — because if he exhorts us to boast, it is right to boast of something. And how is it possible to do this without offending, others, without excluding anyone?
In the first case, we are invited to boast of the abundance of grace of which we are pervaded in Jesus Christ, through faith. Paul wants to make us understand that, if we learn to read everything in the light of the Holy Spirit, we realize that everything is grace! Everything is gift! In fact, if we pay attention, to act – in history as well as in our life – it is not only us but first of all God <who acts>. He is the absolute protagonist, who creates everything as a gift of love, who weaves the plot of his plan of salvation and who brings it to fulfilment for us in His Son Jesus. We are asked to acknowledge all this, to receive it with gratitude and to make it become a motive of praise, of blessing and of great joy. If we do this, we are in peace with God and we experience freedom. And this peace is then extended to all environments and to all relations of our life: we are in peace with ourselves, we are in peace with the family, with our community, at work and with the persons we meet every day on our path.
However, Paul exhorts us to boast also in tribulations. This is not easy to understand. This is more difficult for us and it might seem to have nothing to do with the condition of peace just described. Instead, it constitutes the most authentic, the truest presupposition. In fact, the peace that the Lord offers and guarantees to us is not understood as the absence of worries, disappointments, failings, of motives of suffering. If it were so, should we succeed in being in peace that moment would soon end and we would fall inevitably into dejection. Instead, the peace that flows from faith is a gift: it is the grace of experiencing that God loves us and is always beside us; He does not leave us alone not even for an instant of our life. And, as the Apostle states, this generates patience, because we know that, also in the harshest and most distressing moments, the mercy and goodness of the Lord are greater than anything and nothing will tear us from His hands and from communion with Him.
See then why Christian hope is solid, see that it does not disappoint. It never disappoints. Hope does not disappoint! It is not founded on what we can do or be, and even less so on what we can believe. Its foundation, that is, the foundation of Christian hope is what is most faithful and certain that can be, namely the love that God Himself has for each one of us. It is easy to say: God loves us. We all say it. But think a moment: is every one of us capable of saying: I am certain that God loves me? It is not so easy to say it, but it is true. It is a good exercise to say to oneself: God loves me. This is the root of our security, the root of hope. And the Lord has effused His Spirit abundantly in our hearts as maker and guarantor, precisely so that it can nourish faith within us and keep this hope alive. And this certainty: God loves me. “But in this awful moment?” – God loves me. “And <He loves> me who have done this bad and evil thing?” – God loves me. No one takes this certainty away. And we should repeat it as a prayer: God loves me. I am certain that God loves me. I am certain that God loves me. Now we understand why the Apostle Paul exhorts us to boast always of all this. I boast of the love of God because He loves me. The hope we have been given does not separate us from others, and even less so does it lead us to discredit and marginalize them. Instead, it is an extraordinary gift of which we are called to make ourselves “channels” for all, with humility and simplicity. And then our greatest boast will be that of having as Father a God who does not have preferences, who does not exclude anyone, but who opens His house to all human beings, beginning with the least and the estranged, so that as His children we learn to console and support one another. And do not forget: hope does not disappoint.
[Original text: Italian]  [Translation by Virginia M. Forrester]
In Italian
A warm welcome goes to the Italian-speaking faithful. I greet the parish groups and the Associations, in particular Nessuno escluso [No one excluded] of Taranto, exhorting them to promote always an inclusive culture for persons who are alone and for those without a fixed abode. I greet the Prealpi Choir of Villapedergnano-Erbusco and Note Ascendenti [Ascending Notes] of Sant’Eufemia-Lamezia Terme, and I thank them for their beautiful performance. When one wants something, one does this! We must do this with prayer, when we ask the Lord for something: insist, insist, insist, … it is a good example, a good example of prayer! Thank you! I hope that this meeting will arouse in each one renewed resolutions of Christian testimony in the family and in society.
A special greeting goes to young people, the sick and newlyweds. Yesterday we celebrated the feast of Saints Cyril and Methodius, evangelizers of the Slav peoples and co-patrons of Europe. May their example help you, dear young people, to become missionary disciples in every environment; may their tenacity encourage you, dear sick, to offer your sufferings for the conversion of the estranged; may their love for the Lord illumine you, dear newlyweds, to make the Gospel the fundamental rule of your family life.
[Original text: Italian]  [Translation by Virginia M. Forrester]

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Wednesday February 15, 2017 - #Eucharist


Wednesday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 337

Reading 1GN 8:6-13, 20-22

At the end of forty days Noah opened the hatch he had made in the ark,
and he sent out a raven,
to see if the waters had lessened on the earth.
It flew back and forth until the waters dried off from the earth.
Then he sent out a dove,
to see if the waters had lessened on the earth.
But the dove could find no place to alight and perch,
and it returned to him in the ark,
for there was water all over the earth.
Putting out his hand, he caught the dove
and drew it back to him inside the ark.
He waited seven days more and again sent the dove out from the ark.
In the evening the dove came back to him,
and there in its bill was a plucked-off olive leaf!
So Noah knew that the waters had lessened on the earth.
He waited still another seven days
and then released the dove once more;
and this time it did not come back.

In the six hundred and first year of Noah's life,
in the first month, on the first day of the month,
the water began to dry up on the earth.
Noah then removed the covering of the ark
and saw that the surface of the ground was drying up.

Noah built an altar to the LORD,
and choosing from every clean animal and every clean bird,
he offered burnt offerings on the altar.
When the LORD smelled the sweet odor, he said to himself:
"Never again will I doom the earth because of man
since the desires of man's heart are evil from the start;
nor will I ever again strike down all living beings, as I have done.
As long as the earth lasts,
seedtime and harvest,
cold and heat,
Summer and winter,
and day and night
shall not cease."

Responsorial PsalmPS 116:12-13, 14-15, 18-19

R. (17a) To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.
or:
R. Alleluia.
How shall I make a return to the LORD
for all the good he has done for me?
The cup of salvation I will take up,
and I will call upon the name of the LORD.
R. To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.
or:
R. Alleluia.
My vows to the LORD I will pay
in the presence of all his people.
Precious in the eyes of the LORD
is the death of his faithful ones.
R. To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.
or:
R. Alleluia.
My vows to the LORD I will pay
in the presence of all his people,
In the courts of the house of the LORD,
in your midst, O Jerusalem.
R. To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.
or:
R. Alleluia.

AlleluiaEPH 1:17-18

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
May the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ
enlighten the eyes of our hearts,
that we may know what is the hope
that belongs to his call.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 8:22-26

When Jesus and his disciples arrived at Bethsaida,
people brought to him a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him.
He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village.
Putting spittle on his eyes he laid his hands on the man and asked,
"Do you see anything?"
Looking up the man replied, "I see people looking like trees and walking."
Then he laid hands on the man's eyes a second time and he saw clearly;
his sight was restored and he could see everything distinctly.
Then he sent him home and said, "Do not even go into the village."

Saint February 15 : St. Claude de la Colombiere : Jesuit : Patron of #Toy makers, Turners


Feast Day:
February 14
Born:
2 February 1641 at Saint-Symphorien d’Ozon, Rhône, France
Died:
15 February 1682 at Paray-le-Monial, Saône-et-Loire, France
Canonized:
31 May 1992 by Pope John Paul II in Rome
Major Shrine:
Monastery of the Visitation nuns at Paray-le-Monial
Patron of:
toy makers, turners
JESUIT PREACHER AND MISSIONARY TO ENGLAND

St. Claude de la Colombiere, SJ, promoted the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and was the confessor of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque.
Claude de la Colombiere was born of French noble parents in 1641. His young years were apparently happy ones, as he was close to his family and friends, leading an active social life. He entered the Jesuit novitiate at 17 and commenced a life of study and teaching. After his ordination he taught at the Jesuit college in Lyons, preached, and served as moderator for several Marian congregations.
In 1674, after 15 years of Jesuit life, Colombiere took a personal vow to observe the Rule and Constitutions of the Society of Jesus. He discovered in this program of sanctity an experience of inner liberation and a greater ability to open his heart to others in ministry.
In 1675 Claude was named rector at the Jesuit college at Paray-le-Monial, France. While in Paray, Colombiere became the spiritual advisor for Sr. Margaret Mary Alacoque. The Lord was revealing to Margaret Mary visions of his compassionate heart for the world.
Margaret Mary was filled with anxiety and uncertainty about what she was experiencing. The Lord instructed through Sr. Margaret Mary Alacoque that the world be devoted to his Sacred Heart. Colombiere assured Sr. Margaret Mary that her visions were authentic. He also instructed her to write down all that she had experienced. In accepting the authenticity of Margaret Mary’s visions, Claude de la Colombiere pledged himself to the mission of spreading the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
In 1676 Claude became the appointed preacher for the Duchess of York (later Queen of England). He moved to London, where he worked to reconcile former Catholics with the Church. In 1678 he was caught in the web of lies spun by Titus Oates about an alleged plot by Jesuits to kill Charles II. Claude, in spite of failing health, was first thrown into prison and later exiled to France. In 1682 Colombiere died in Paray-le-Monial.
Claude de la Colombiere was declared a saint by Pope John Paul II in 1992.IgnatianSpirituality