Thursday, October 11, 2018

Saint October 12 : St. Wilfrid : Patron of #England

St. Wilfrid
BISHOP
Feast: October 12
Information:
Feast Day:
October 12
Born:
634 in Northumbria, England
Died:
709 at Oundle, Northhamptonshire, England
Patron of:
Middlesbrough, England (image source: GOOGLE)

Bishop of York, son of a Northumbrian thegn, born in 634; died at Oundle in Northamptonshire, 709. He was unhappy at home, through the unkindness of a stepmother, and in his fourteenth year he was sent away to the Court of King Oswy, King of Northumbria. Here he attracted the attention of Queen Eanfleda and by her, at his own request, he was sent to the Monastery of Lindisfarne. After three years spent here he was sent for, again through the kindness of the queen, to Rome, in the company of St. Benedict Biscop. At Rome he was the pupil of Boniface, the pope's archdeacon. On his way home he stayed for three years at Lyons, where he received the tonsure from Annemundas, the bishop of that place. Annemundas wanted him to remain at Lyons altogether, and marry his niece and become his heir, but Wilfrid was determined that he would be a priest. Soon after persecution arose at Lyons, and Annemundas perished in it. The same fate nearly came to Wilfrid, but when it was shown that he was a Saxon he was allowed to depart, and came back to England. In England he received the newly founded monastery at Ripon as the gift of Alchfrid, Oswy's son and heir, and here he established the full Benedictine Rule. The Columbite monks, who had been settled previously at Ripon, withdrew to the North. It was not until he had been for five years Abbot of Ripon, that Wilfrid became a priest. His main work at Ripon was the introduction of Roman rules and the putting forward of a Roman practice with regard to the point at issue between the Holy See and the Scottish monks in Northumbria; to settle these questions the synod of Whitby was held in 664. Chiefly owing to Wilfrid's advocacy of the claims of the Holy See the votes of the majority were given to that side, and Colman and his monks, bitterly disappointed, withdrew from Northumbria. Wilfrid, in consequence of the favours he had then obtained, was elected bishop in Colman's place, and, refusing to receive consecration from the northern bishops, whom he regarded as schismatics, went over to France to be consecrated at Compiègne.
He delayed some time in France, whether by his own fault or not is not quite clear, and on his return in 666 was driven from his course by a storm and shipwrecked on the coast of Sussex, where the heathen inhabitants repelled him and almost killed him. He succeeded in landing, however, in Kent not far from Sandwich. Thence he made his way to Northumbria, only to find that, owing to his long absence, his see had been filled up, and that a St. Chad was bishop in his place. He retired to his old monastery at Ripon, and from thence went southwards and worked in Mercia, especially at Lichfield, and also in Kent.
In 669 Archbishop Theodore of Canterbury visited Northumbria, where he found Chad working as bishop. He pointed out to him the defects of his position and, at his instigation, St. Chad withdrew and Wilfrid once more became Bishop of York. During his tenure of the see, he acted with great vigour and energy, completing the work of enforcing the Roman obedience against the Scottish monks. He founded a great many monasteries of the Benedictine Order, especially at Henlam and at Ripon, and completely rebuilt the minster at York. In all that he did he acted with great magnificence, although his own life was always simple and restrained.
So long as Oswy lived all went well, but with Ecgfrid, Oswy's son and successor, Wilfrid was very unpopular, because of his action in connection with Ecgfrid's bride Etheldrida, who by Wilfrid's advice would not live with her husband but retired into a monastery. It was just at this juncture that Theodore, possibly exceeding his powers as Archbishop of Canterbury, proceeded to subdivide the great diocese over which Wilfrid ruled, and to make suffragan bishops of Lindisfarne, Hexham, and Witherne. Wilfrid, whether or not he approved of the principle of subdivision, refused to allow Theodore's right to make it, and appealed to the central authority at Rome, whither he at once went. Theodore replied by consecrating three bishops in Wilfrid's own church at York and dividing his whole bishopric between them.
An attempt was made by his enemies to prevent Wilfrid from reaching Rome, but by a singular coincidence Winfrid, Bishop of Lichfield, happened to be going to Rome at the same time, and the singularity of the name led to his being stopped while Wilfrid got through safely. At Rome a council was called by Pope Agatho to decide the case, and Wilfrid appeared before it in person, while Theodore was represented. The case was decided in Wilfrid's favour, and the intruding bishops were removed. Wilfrid was to return to York, and since subdivision of his diocese was needed, he was to appoint others as his coadjutors. He came back to Northumbria with this decision, but the king, though not disputing theright of Rome to settle the question, said that Wilfrid had brought the decision and put him in prison at Bambrough. After a time this imprisonment was converted to exile, and he was driven from the kingdom of Northumbria. He went south to Sussex where the heathen inhabitants had so inhospitably received him fifteen years before, and preached as a missionary at Selsey.
In 686 a reconciliation took place between Theodore and Wilfrid, who had then been working in Sussex for five years. Through Theodore's good offices Wilfrid was received back in Northumbria, where Aldfrid was now king. He became Bishop of Hexham at once, and before long, when York again fell vacant, he took possession there once more. For some years all went well, but at the end of that time great difficulties arose with the king because Wilfrid utterly refused to recognize what had been done by Theodore but annulled by Rome in the matter of the subdivision of his diocese, and he once more left York and appealed to Rome. He reached Rome for the third and last time in 704.
The proceedings at Rome were very lengthy, but after some months Wilfrid was again victorious. Archbishop Brihtwald was to hold a synod and see justice done. Wilfrid started again for England but on his way was taken ill at Meaux and nearly died. He recovered, however, and came back to England, where he was reconciled to Brihtwald. A synod was held, and it was decided to give back to Wilfrid, Hexham and Ripon, but not York, a settlement which, though unsatisfactory, he decided to accept, as the principle of Roman authority had been vindicated.
Beyond all others of his time, St. Wilfrid stands out as the great defender of the rights of the Holy See. For that principle he fought all through his life, first against Colman and the Scottish monks from Iona, and then against Theodore and his successor in the See of Canterbury; and much of his life was spent in exile for this reason. But to him above all others is due the establishment of the authority of the Roman See in England, and for that reason he will always have a very high place among English saints.
Eddius, the biographer of St. Wilfrid, was brought by that saint from Canterbury when he returned to York in 669. His special work was to be in connection with the music of the church of York, and he was to teach the Roman method of chant. He was an inmate of the monastery of Ripon in 709, when St. Wilfrid spent his last days there, and he undertook the work of writing the life of the saint at the request of Acca, St. Wilfrid's successor in the See of Hexham. The best edition of the work is in Raines, "Historians of the Church of York" (Rolls Series).
SOURCE The Catholic Encyclopedia

Free Catholic Movie : The Good Pope : Drama of Pope John XXIII : Stars Bob Hoskins


This movie on the life of St. Pope John XXIII Stars Bob Hoskins. Angelo Roncalli, born in Sotto Il Monte in 1881, is known for his profound spirituality as well as his extraordinary goodness from the young years of his life. When he feels a need to serve God, Angelo goes to study theology in Bergamo, and in Apollinare School (Rome) and becomes a priest. During his studies, he gets to know his two dearest friends, Mattia and Nicola. Very soon, most people see marvelous talents in him, including his wide knowledge and a constant readiness for sacrifice. The Holy See makes him go further to bishop and cardinal, and the Holy Father sends him to various places as a representative of the Church. When Pius XII dies on October, the 9th, 1958, 77 year-old Angelo goes to Rome, to conclave to choose a new pope. However, this time, it is him who hears gentle words of Jesus "Tu es Petrus!" ("You are Peter!") and from October, the 28th leads the church as pope John XXIII. Anonymous
Director:
 Ricky Tognazzi
2003 Film Stars:
 Bob Hoskins, Carlo Cecchi, Roberto Citran 
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#BreakingNews 130 Christians detained in Myanmar with Churches Shut Down - Please Pray

Shan State: 100 Christians freed, another 130 still detained
 Pro-Chinese rebels forced those released to sign a document pledging to pray only at home and not in churches. More than a hundred places of worship have been shut down and at least three destroyed. Catholic mission run by Salesian missionary nuns has also be forced to close. Naypyidaw (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The United Wa State Army (UWSA) last week freed 100 ethnic Wa Christians it had detained, but continues to hold about 130 ethnic Lahu Christians as part of their ongoing campaign of repression against Christianity. Considered Myanmar’s largest non-state army, the UWSA (pictured) controls two mountainous regions in the eastern state of Shan, on the border with China. Churches, priests and Christian missionaries who work in the Wa highlands have been the victims of a crackdown since the beginning of September by the pro-Beijing rebel group. According to the Lahu Baptist Convention (LBC), more than a hundred churches have been closed and at least three destroyed. In the Mong Pauk township alone, the ethnic army shut down 52 churches, including those operated by the Wa Baptist Convention and the Kachin Baptist Convention. In Mong Mau, rebels also ordered the closure of a Catholic mission run by Salesian missionary nuns and ordered the latter’s expulsion. LBC general secretary Rev Lazarus said that the UWSA detained 92 of its leaders and that none have been released to date. Those released on 5 October had to sign a document pledging to pray only at home and not in churches. The seven pastors who refused are still in custody. UWSA militants, most of whom follow tribal religions, also seized more than 40 ethnic Wa students who have been reportedly forcibly recruited.
FULL TEXT SHARE from AsiaNewsIT

Latest from the #Synod2018 - Faith in a Digital World and Fear - FULL Video


Synod: the digital world, fear, loneliness and Korea
Three issues dominated the daily press briefing for the Synod of Bishops on Young People: the digital world, fear, loneliness and the Korean Peninsula.
  By Russell Pollitt, SJ
Dr Paolo Ruffini, the Prefect of the Vatican Dicastery for Communications, said that discussions in the Synod assembly continued in a serene and cheerful manner with lots of joyful interactions between the bishops and young people. He said that there was an emphasis on the fact that charity mustn’t just be preached but also seen in action. He told journalists that one young person told the Synod Fathers that thousands of young people looked towards them for something concrete from the Synod, they trusted the Fathers would meet their hopes. Dr Ruffini also said that an intervention about secularisation urged the bishops to see this not only as a negative move but one that frees religion from a connection to national identities. It challenges the Church to a more mature faith.

Digital World

Dr Ruffini said that although the digital world is a great development and facilitates the exchange of information it also has boundaries. The danger of manipulation and a culture of violence is very real in both images and writing. The Church must help bring humanity back to the digital world.  
Archbishop Bruno Forte of Italy said that the Synod assembly recognised that there are many young people who are lonely, not engaging in the reality of relationships, but rather seeking them online. The Synod assembly pondered how the Church reaches these young people who are alone in the dark in front of their computers which, he said, threatens to swallow them.  

Fear and Loneliness

Archbishop Forte sketched two profiles of young people that he felt emerged from the discussions. First, some young people who have a wealth of hopes and wishes for the future, especially those who are fleeing political and economic situations. The second are those in the West who, he says, are more fearful and lonely. He says that this arises from the digital world but also because there is a disconnect with their past and with older generations. An inter-generational disconnect causes a memory loss and so young people have no roots.
An auditor from India, Mr Percival Holt, noted that even in the Synod there was a struggle for some of the bishops to understand young people because of the generation gap. He said that they were trying to do this and that it was important to continue dialoguing. The Church and young people must make the journey together patiently, he added.
Bishop Lazzaro You Heung-sik from South Korea noted that he met some fearful young people too. They were fearful of the sacrifices and the impact on their lifestyles if there was a reunification between North and South Korea. He said that he believes that this is not the majority of young people though because many see the benefits of such a move.

Korea


Speaking about the situation in Korea, Bishop Heung-sik said that until last year many believed that there would be a war between North and South Korea. This has now changed. He ascribes this to the Olympic games saying that the event helped to establish a relationship between the two. He says that he believes that North Korea is ready to begin opening up. He says that the South Korean leader, Moon Jae-in, told his North Korean counterpart, Kim Jong-un, that the best way for the country to get back into the international community was by inviting Pope Francis to visit. If the Pope visits this would be a giant step forward for peace on the Korean Peninsula. The Bishop cautioned that lots of work still has to be done and change will be necessary - he specifically mentioned North Korea ensuring religious freedom. He said that by listening and gathering opinions, especially those of young people, the Church can assist move things forward and in so doing create a climate of cooperation.
FULL TEXT Source: Vatican News Va

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Pope Francis "In prayer be intrusive. Do not get tired..."prayer is not like a magic wand" in Homily

Pope Mass: Jesus teaches us to be "invasive" in prayer
The Pope at his homily at the Casa Santa on Thursday says we must be courageous when we ask something of the Lord. God is the friend who can give us what we need. A passage in Thursday’s Gospel was at the heart of Pope Francis’ homily at Mass at the Casa Santa Marta. The theme that was addressed was that of prayer, of how we must pray. Jesus tells his disciples of a man who, at midnight, knocks at a friend's house to ask him for something to eat. And the friend replies that it is not the right moment, that he is already in bed, but then gets up and gives him what he asks for. Praying with courage and without getting tired
Pope Francis emphasizes three elements: a man in need, a friend, a little bread. It is a surprise visit from the needy friend and his is an insistent request because he has confidence in the friend who has what he needs. The Lord wants to teach us how to pray: said Pope Francis, wants us to pray with "intrusiveness".
Please be bold, because when we pray we usually have a need. The friend is God: he is a rich friend who has bread, he has what we need. As Jesus said: "In prayer be intrusive. Do not get tired ". But do not get tired of what? Of asking. “Ask and it will be given to you”.

Prayer is not a magic wand

But, the Pope continued, "prayer is not like a magic wand", it is not that as soon as we ask, we obtain. It is not a matter of saying two "Our Fathers" and then leaving it at that :Prayer requires effort: it asks us for will, it asks for constancy, it asks us to be determined, without shame. Why? Because I'm knocking on my friend's door. God is a friend, and with a friend I can do this. A constant, intrusive prayer. Think of Saint Monica, for example, how many years she prayed like this, even with tears, for the conversion of her son. The Lord eventually opened the door.

Fight with the Lord to obtain what you need

Pope Francis then provided another example, recounting a real life story that happened in Buenos Aires: a man, a worker, had a daughter who was dying, the doctors had given up hope and he traveled 70 kilometers to go up to the Shrine of Our Lady of Luján. It was night time and the sanctuary was closed, but he prayed all night long imploring Our Lady: "I want my daughter, I want my daughter, you can give her to me." And when morning came he returned to the hospital he found his wife who told him: "You know, the doctors took her to do another test, they cannot explain why she woke up and asked for food, there's nothing wrong, she's fine, she's out of danger" This man, Pope Francis concluded, knew how to pray.

The cries of the capricious children

The Pope invited those gathered to think about capricious children when they want something, they cry and cry saying: "I want it! I want it! "And eventually the parents give up. But some may ask: will not God be angry if I do so? It is Jesus himself, said the Pope, who, in anticipating this, told us: If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” He is a friend: he always gives good things. He gives more: I ask you to solve this problem and he solves it and also gives you the Holy Spirit. More. Let's think a little: how do you pray? Like a parrot? Do I really pray with a need in my heart? Struggle with God in prayer in order that he gives me what I need if it is right? We learn from this passage of the Gospel how to pray.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Thursday October 11, 2018 _ #Eucharist

Thursday of the Twenty-seventh Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 464

Reading 1GAL 3:1-5

O stupid Galatians!
Who has bewitched you,
before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified?
I want to learn only this from you:
did you receive the Spirit from works of the law,
or from faith in what you heard?
Are you so stupid?
After beginning with the Spirit,
are you now ending with the flesh?
Did you experience so many things in vain?–
if indeed it was in vain.
Does, then, the one who supplies the Spirit to you
and works mighty deeds among you
do so from works of the law
or from faith in what you heard?

Responsorial Psalm LUKE 1:69-70, 71-72, 73-75

R. (68) Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior,
born of the house of his servant David.
R. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.
Through his holy prophets he promised of old
that he would save us from our enemies,
from the hands of all who hate us.
R. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant.
R. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham:
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight
all the days of our life.
R. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; He has come to his people.

AlleluiaSEE ACTS 16:14B

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Open our hearts, O Lord,
to listen to the words of your Son.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelLK 11:5-13

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Suppose one of you has a friend
to whom he goes at midnight and says,
'Friend, lend me three loaves of bread,
for a friend of mine has arrived at my house from a journey
and I have nothing to offer him,'
and he says in reply from within,
'Do not bother me; the door has already been locked
and my children and I are already in bed.
I cannot get up to give you anything.'
I tell you, if he does not get up to give him the loaves
because of their friendship,
he will get up to give him whatever he needs
because of his persistence.

"And I tell you, ask and you will receive;
seek and you will find;
knock and the door will be opened to you.
For everyone who asks, receives;
and the one who seeks, finds;
and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
What father among you would hand his son a snake
when he asks for a fish?
Or hand him a scorpion when he asks for an egg?
If you then, who are wicked,
know how to give good gifts to your children,
how much more will the Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit
to those who ask him?"

Saint October 11 : Saint María Soledad Torres Acosta : #Foundress and Mother of the #ServantsofMary

Foundress and Mother of the Servants of Mary, Ministers to the Sick
(1826 – 1887)

Soledad Torres Acosta was a woman who was completely open to the action of the Holy Spirit. She knew how to see the hand of God in everything that happened around her. She let herself be seduced by His loving and irresistible call that invited her to follow Him. She welcomed Christ into her heart, and her life was transformed into a gift for others. In humility and with God as her sole support, she even dared to undertake a great work in the Church: The Institute of the Servants of Mary.
Saint María Soledad was born on December 2, 1826, in Madrid, Spain. She was the second child of Francisco Torres and Antonia Acosta. She was baptized two days later and was given the name Antonia Bibiana Manuela.
Her childhood and youth passed by in the simplicity of daily life like any other young girl of her time; however, her love for the Blessed Virgin Mary and for prayer already stood out in her. When she was 25 years old, she heard the Lord’s call and asked to be admitted into the new Institute of the Servants of Mary that Father Michael Martínez, the parish priest of the neighborhood of Chamberí, had set out to begin for the purpose of caring for the sick in their own homes. The foundation took place on August 15, 1851. Manuela, who from then on would be called Sister María Soledad, would be the seventh of the founding group.

This is how Mother Soledad began her long journey through inspirations and darkness as she placed herself at the service of the poorest of the poor–the sick- seeing in them Christ Himself. With the total gift of herself, she went about showering the most exquisite and diligent charity upon the sick and poor. With profound humility and her great capacity to love, she understood the richness that the poor and sick possessed: they were nothing less than Christ Himself, the Divine Patient. It was Him for whom she kept vigil at night. She would look at Him, talk to Him, love Him and cure His wounds and kiss them… and the encounter was transformed into trust, hope and salvation. In this way she collaborated in the building up of the Kingdom of God.
After five years of complete dedication to the care of the sick, she saw that it was necessary for her to accept the position of General Superior. When Father Michael departed for the missions, she took charge of the Congregation, trusting in Divine Providence, and became the Foundress and Mother of the Servants of Mary.
Day after day, Mother Soledad did everything possible to provide for her Daughters’ spiritual wellbeing; her entire person reflected the gratuitousness and goodness of God. Her meek and humble heart was empty of herself and open to all; there were no limits of any kind for she knew that she belonged exclusively to God, and she gave her life as a free gift without receiving anything in return.
Open and willing to carry out the divine will, she had a deep sense of God’s presence within her. She constantly lived in the presence of God in everything she did: her work, various circumstances, unexpected events, the most ordinary tasks. She discovered God in everything because her heart was immersed in Him.
She solved everything with the logic of love based on humility, charity and gratitude. Because she lived poverty to the extreme and because she was profoundly humble, she acquired the liberty of spirit to be equable and magnanimous toward all, making herself the smallest and least of all.
Her secret was simple: seek the will of God always and in everything: in her many hours of prayer, in her personal encounter with God’s providence, in her friendship with Christ in the Holy Spirit whose growing presence she perceived in her soul as it became more transparent and penetrating every day, impelling her to work in her preferred and beloved field: the sick.
Her life revolved around the Lord’s presence in the Eucharist. Her nourishment was the Sacraments, especially the Eucharist, from whom she received the strength necessary to endure life’s hardships with patience and serenity and to guide the Congregation with faith and unlimited trust in God whom she recognized as the ultimate guiding hand of the Institute. From the Eucharist Mother Soledad received the grace to give herself without reserve to her work as can be seen in her Letter 89: “May the Lord grant us His holy peace and patience so that with these two shields, we may carry the holy cross that Our Lord in His mercy has destined for us.
Her goal was clear: to be transformed into another Christ. From the very beginning, a clear sign of this transformation was her love for all, especially the most abandoned of society: those with contagious diseases. “The poor are my brothers”, she would say. She was so generous in sharing the little she had that all who came to her were surprised by this small woman with such a great soul. By her presence or her smile or by giving away a piece of bread, she revealed that God dwelled within her and that God is Love.
Mother Soledad showed us that the most wonderful gift from God is to be able to be fully identified with Christ who was obedient unto death on the cross. She experienced the emptiness, the loneliness and the abandonment of many, but never did she lack trust in Him who can do all things. She knew that the Cross of Christ is the source of strength and joy and that there are crosses that renew the life of the Church. She would exclaim, “May I know how to suffer”.  “Give me light and grace to be able to suffer and endure more for You”  (Letter 75). For her Daughters she prayed for “the grace to follow Him unto Calvary and to die crucified for love of Him” (Letter 75).
Mother Soledad took upon herself the suffering of the sick, of all of her Daughters, of the Church and of the entire world. She completed in her own body what was lacking in the passion of Christ, and her love and union with the Crucified Christ reached its fullness when she no longer desired anything else for herself or for her Daughters other than to “love the cross of Christ and not desire anything else” (Letter 63). This is the logic of love.
Mother Soledad relied on an exceptional woman for support and assistance who was her Mother on her journey: Our Lady, Health of the Sick. She was her model who she called her Mother, her consolation and her joy. Like Mary, she also gave her unconditional yes to the will of God and allowed herself to be molded in the forge of divine love. She was a bearer of Christ as she cared for the sick and proclaimed the Good News by her words and actions. She anticipated the needs of others in a motherly spirit of service to all. Like Mary she was at the foot of the Cross as she stayed at the bedside of suffering in an attitude of salvific offering. She was able to read history in the light of faith and hoped against all hope.
I have placed my confidence in Mary”, she would often repeat as she placed the “little boat” of the Congregation in her hands so she could lead it safely home. Full of gratitude and abandoned into the hands of the Father, she left this earthly life on October 11, 1887, a nine o’clock in the morning. She died like a grain of wheat as she reached the fullness of love. She left the “tree” of the Congregation flourishing with 46 foundations in Spain and overseas.
Today we can say that Mother Soledad let herself be led by the Holy Spirit who emptied her of herself so as to fill her with God. Flooded with His love, she caught a glimpse of new horizons in the Church, and impelled by this same Spirit from whom she received the precious gift of the new charism, she enriched and renewed the Church with the new Institute according to the Gospel: “Go and cure the sick”.  She revealed to us by her life the new and unique language of God: love. “The sick are the image of the suffering Christ and it is Him that we serve.” Mother Soledad taught us how to discover Christ in the poorest of the poor: the sick. “You did it to me.” Through her life she left us these finishing touches of her spiritual disposition:
Our own spirituality: Contemplatives in action, abandoned to Divine Providence, collaborators with Christ and Mary in the salvation of mankind.
Specific charism: the diligent and gratuitous care of the sick, preferably in their own home.
Her message: May you have peace and union and keep the Rule of Institute.
Shared from http://www.sisterservantsofmary.org/