Thursday, December 13, 2018

Beautiful Traditional Wexford #Carol - one of the Oldest in #History - #Palestrina Choir - SHARE - Proclaims Jesus' Birth!



The Wexford Carol (Irish: Carúl Loch Garman, Carúl Inis Córthaidh) is a traditional Irish Christmas carol from County Wexford, and Enniscorthy. It originates in 12th century  and is in Mixolydian mode form,. It is also known by its first verse, "Good people all this Christmas time." This is one of the oldest Christmas carols of Europe. This version by the The Palestrina Choir of St Mary's Pro-Cathedral, Dublin, has been viewed thousands of times. It is an breathtakingly beautiful sung version. 
SHARE this Beautiful Carol which Proclaims the Birth of Jesus
Good people all, this Christmas time,
Consider well and bear in mind
What our good God for us has done
In sending his beloved son
With Mary holy we should pray,
To God with love this Christmas Day
In Bethlehem upon that morn,
There was a blessed Messiah born.

The night before that happy tide,
The noble Virgin and her guide
Were long time seeking up and down
To find a lodging in the town.
But mark right well what came to pass
From every door repelled, alas,
As was foretold, their refuge all
Was but a humble ox's stall.

Near Bethlehem did shepherds keep
Their flocks of lambs and feeding sheep
To whom God's angel did appear
Which put the shepherds in great fear
Arise and go, the angels said
To Bethlehem, be not afraid
For there you'll find, this happy morn
A princely babe, sweet Jesus, born.

With thankful heart and joyful mind
The shepherds went the babe to find
And as God's angel had foretold
They did our Saviour Christ behold
Within a manger he was laid
And by his side a virgin maid
Attending on the Lord of Life
Who came on earth to end all strife.

There were three wise men from afar
Directed by a glorious star
And on they wandered night and day
Until they came where Jesus lay
And when they came unto that place
Where our beloved Messiah lay
They humbly cast them at his feet
With gifts of gold and incense sweet.

Pope Francis "It is essential that respect for human dignity and human rights inspire and direct every effort..." FULL TEXT to #Ambassadors


ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS
FOR THE PRESENTATION OF CREDENTIAL LETTERS BY THE AMBASSADORS OF
SWITZERLAND, MALTA, THE BAHAMAS, CABO VERDE, ESTONIA, ICELAND, TURKMENISTAN,
GRENADA, QATAR AND THE GAMBIA ACCREDITED TO THE HOLY SEE
Clementine Hall
Thursday, 13 December 2018

Your Excellencies,
I am pleased to receive you for the presentation of the Letters by which you are accredited as Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of your countries to the Holy See: Switzerland, Malta, The Bahamas, Cabo Verde, Estonia, Iceland, Turkmenistan, Grenada, Qatar and The Gambia. I would ask you kindly to convey my sentiments of esteem to your respective Heads of State, together with the assurance of my prayers for them and for your fellow citizens.
This year, as you know, marks the hundredth anniversary of the end of the First World War, a tragedy of immense proportions that my predecessor, Pope Benedict XV, did not hesitate to call a “senseless slaughter”. May the lessons learned from the two great wars of the twentieth century, which led to the establishment of the United Nations Organization, continue to convince the world’s people and their leaders of the futility of armed conflict and the need to resolve conflicts through patient dialogue and negotiation. It is my prayerful hope that the mission you now undertake in the service of your various nations will contribute to this lofty goal of “securing a peace based on justice and charity, and promoting the means necessary to attain it” (Gaudium et Spes, 77).
In this year, too, the international community has celebrated the seventieth anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This foundational document continues to guide the efforts of global diplomacy to secure peace in our world and to promote the integral development of each individual and all peoples. The two goals are in fact inseparable. In its very first words, the Declaration states that, “recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family, is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world” (Preamble).
In these times of sweeping social and political change, there can be no lessening of the commitment to this principle on the part of governments and peoples. It is essential that respect for human dignity and human rights inspire and direct every effort to address the grave situations of war and armed conflict, crushing poverty, discrimination and inequality that afflict our world, and in recent years have issued in the present crisis of mass migration. No effective humanitarian solution to that pressing global issue can ignore our moral responsibility, with due regard for the common good, to welcome, protect, promote and integrate those who knock at our doors in search of a secure future for themselves and their children (cf. Message for the 2018 World Day of Peace, No. 4). The Church, for her part, is committed to working with every responsible partner in a constructive dialogue aimed at proposing concrete solutions to this and other urgent humanitarian problems, with the goal of preserving human lives and dignity, alleviating suffering and advancing an authentic and integral development.

Dear Ambassadors, as you now begin your mission to the Holy See, I offer you my prayerful good wishes and I assure you of the constant readiness of the various offices of the Roman Curia to assist you in the fulfilment of your responsibilities. Upon you and your families, your collaborators and all your fellow citizens, I cordially invoke God’s blessings of joy and peace.
FULL TEXT Source Share from Vatican.va + Image Share - Official Translation

#BreakingNews Cardinal Pell of Australia found guilty of "historical" abuse - He maintains Innocence - Please Pray


An Australian jury has found Cardinal George Pell, 77, guilty on five charges of “historical child sexual offenses” that go back decades, according to various media reports and confirmed by America. The 12-member jury gave their unanimous verdict in the County Court of the State of Victoria in Melbourne on Tuesday, Dec. 11.

The judge decided that the sentencing will take place in early February 2019 and released the cardinal on bail.

Little is known about the nature of the charges on which Cardinal Pell has been condemned because the entire trial and a second trial that has yet to take place are covered by a strict suppression order issued by the presiding judge, Peter Kidd. The order prohibits reporting on the case in any of the country’s media until the second trial has taken place to avoid prejudicing his case in both instances. The judge has prohibited the publication of the number of complainants in either of the two trials as well as the number and nature of the charges, except for the fact that the charges relate to “historical child sexual offenses.”

An Australian jury has found Cardinal George Pell, 77, guilty on five charges of historical sexual offenses.

The cardinal has always maintained his innocence. Committal hearings were held in May at the end of which the presiding magistrate, while dismissing some of the most serious charges, ordered him to stand trial on the other charges.

His lawyers and the Victoria State public prosecutors agreed to split the charges against him into two trials: one relating to alleged sexual offenses committed at the cathedral in Melbourne (the first trial known as “the cathedral trial”) and the other for abuse said to have been committed in Ballarat, reportedly at a swimming pool (known as “the swimmers trial”). Yesterday’s verdict comes from the first trial. That trial began in September but the jury could not reach a verdict, and so a new trial began in November which resulted in yesterday’s verdict. The second trial is expected to take place early in 2019, probably around mid-February or early March, after the sentencing related to the first verdict has taken place.


Vatican Spokesman said, “The Holy See has the utmost respect for the Australian judicial authorities. We are aware there is a suppression order in place and we respect that order.”

Pope Francis told journalists in an airborne press conference earlier this year that he would speak only after the judicial process (which includes the possibility of appeal after sentencing) had run its course. Sources say the cardinal, who has always insisted in this innocence, will appeal.

The conviction of another Australian archbishop, Philip Wilson, was overturned by an appeals court, and sources believe the case of Cardinal Pell could follow suit.


Pope Francis “granted Cardinal Pell a leave of absence so he could defend himself from the accusations” on June 29, 2017. Since then, the cardinal has been unable to carry out his responsibilities as prefect of the Secretariat of the Economy, a senior position in the Vatican, and as a member of the pope’s council of nine cardinals advisors.

Prior to his leave of absence—when allegations became public and some thought the pope should have removed Cardinal Pell from office—Francis applied the principle of law known as “in dubio pro reo” (“doubt favors the accused”), insisting that a person is to be considered innocent until proven guilty. The pope did not remove Cardinal Pell from his Vatican posts then because he believed to do so would be equivalent to an admission of guilt. Francis explained his stance in a press conference on the return flight from World Youth Day in Poland, July 31, 2016. He said: “We have to wait for the justice system to do its job and not pass judgment in the media because this is not helpful. ‘Judgment’ by gossip, and then what? We don’t know how it will turn out. See what the justice system decides. Once it has spoken, then I will speak.”


Pope Francis’ words make clear that he does not intend to speak until the judicial process, including a possible appeal, has ended. He has, however, terminated Cardinal Pell’s membership of the council of nine cardinal advisors, Mr. Burke, indicated on Dec. 12. Mr. Burke revealed that at the end of October, the pope sent a letter thanking Cardinals Pell, Francisco Javier Errazuriz (Chile) and Laurent Monswengo Pasinya (Democratic Republic of the Congo) for their work in his council of cardinal advisors over the past five years.

Cardinal Pell could decide to hand in his resignation as prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy, since it is unlikely that his second trial and an eventual appeal will have taken place by the time his five-year term as prefect expires on Feb. 24. The cardinal, who will be 78 in June, could also resign from his other roles in various Roman Curia departments and offices. Currently, he is a member of the Congregation for Bishops, the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, the Congregation for the Institutes of Consecrated Life and the Societies of Apostolic Life and the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization.

Regardless, Cardinal Pell is not allowed to carry out any pastoral ministry in public until the whole judicial process has ended, and then only if the verdict is in his favor.
Edited from America Magazine

#BreakingNews 2 Nuns Allegedly Stole $500,000 from School for Trips to Casinos in Las Vegas - FULL TEXT Statement


Two nuns allegedly stole $500,000 for trips to Las Vegas,.
 For nearly 28 years, Sister Mary Margaret Kreuper was the principal at St. James Catholic School in Torrance, Calif, a coastal suburb southwest of Los Angeles. Around the same time that Kreuper announced she was retiring earlier this year, a family at the school asked for a copy of an old check they had written to St. James. When staff members found the check, the Long Beach Press-Telegram reported, they realized it had not been deposited into St. James’s account but a different bank account. That was among the first clues that would unravel a vast fraud that was allegedly conducted by Kreuper and Sister Lana Chang, another nun and longtime St. James’s teacher. School officials recently told parents the two nuns had stolen about $500,000 from the school. The school said the two women, reportedly best friends, used the money for trips and casino visits. “We do know that they had a pattern of going on trips, we do know they had a pattern of going to casinos, and the reality is, they used the account as their personal account,” Marge Graf, an attorney representing St. James, told a group of parents at a meeting last Monday night, according to the Beach Reporter.
While Kreuper worked as the school’s principal, Chang was an eighth-grade teacher. (She also retired this year.) Both women were members of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet order.
A review alleged that Kreuper and Chang had been committing fraud for at least 10 years. An old unused bank account belonging to the church was the key to the alleged misconduct, Monsignor Michael Meyers (Pastor of St. James) said. The account was opened in 1997, but had not been used for years. Kreuper would divert checks made out to the school for tuition and fees into this dormant account. She allegedly endorsed the checks with a stamp saying, “St. James Convent,” not “St. James School.” The two nuns then tapped the account for their personal use, Monsignor  Meyers  said. Parents told the Press-Telegram that they knew the nuns went on gambling trips, but the two said the jaunts were gifts from a wealthy uncle. “These nuns took a vow of poverty and said, ‘Oh, no, we’ve got a rich uncle,’ ” Alexander told the paper. “The rich uncle was the parents of the St. James students.” When confronted about the missing money, Monsignor Meyers   said the nuns admitted what they had done. “Sister Mary Margaret and Sister Lana have expressed to me and asked that I convey to you, the deep remorse they each feel for their actions and ask for your forgiveness and prayers,” Meyers wrote in a letter to the parents and parishioners, Fox 6 reported. “They and their order pray that you have not lost trust or faith in the educators and administrators of the school.” The order also confirmed that their members had been caught in the alleged fraud. “The Sisters have confirmed the misappropriation of funds and have cooperated in the investigation,” the order said in a statement. The order is willing to repay the money, the archdiocese has decided not to pursue criminal charges against them. Above is Edited from the Washington Post

STATEMENT REGARDING FINANCIAL MISCONDUCT BY SISTERS

updated December 10, 2018
The Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet confirm that we have been notified that the Archdiocese of Los Angeles intends to file a criminal complaint with the Torrance, California Police Department against Sisters Mary Margaret Kreuper and Lana Chang for misappropriation of funds. As a religious community, we will not defend the actions of our Sisters. What happened is wrong. Our Sisters take full responsibility for the choices they made and are subject to the law.
The Sisters of St. Joseph are committed to work with the Archdiocese to discover the amount taken. We are unable to confirm any sum until the discovery phase is completed. We intend to make restitution to St. James School as soon as a total is known. Justice demands this of us.
Canonical Restrictions have been imposed. The two Sisters are removed from their residence and placed in a religious house under the supervision of community leadership. They are also removed from all public ministry.
The Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet are concerned and saddened by this situation and regret any pain this has caused many in our Church, especially the families connected to St. James School. We hold the sorrow of our Sisters’ actions deep in our community hearts.
Release Source: csjcarondelet.org/ - Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet

#BreakingNews Changes to Council of Cardinals at Vatican as Pope Francis removes those Involved in Abuse


Council of Cardinal Advisors wrap-up December meeting
The Director of the Holy See Press Office briefed journalists on the December meeting of the Pope’s Council of Cardinal Advisors that ended on Wednesday.
By Linda Bordoni

Speaking to journalists at the Vatican Press Office, Director Greg Burke said the Council of Cardinal Advisors had concluded their 27th meeting and he highlighted some of the issues that were addressed.

Burke noted that Pope Francis had been present for all encounters of the 3-day meeting, excluding Wednesday morning when he presided at the General Audience.

He pointed out that Cardinal Parolin had not been present due to his commitments in Morocco at the signing of the Global Compact for Migration,  and also that three other Cardinals are no longer part of the Council.

Three Cardinals no longer part of the Council
.“In October the Pope had written to three of the more elderly Cardinals – Cardinal Pell from Australia, Cardinal Errazuriz from Chile and Cardinal Monsengwo of Congo thanking them for their work,” Burke said, so they are no longer part of the Council and he specified that the Pope has not named new Cardinals in their place.

Burke pointed to some important themes of the meeting including the containment of costs of the Holy See, the February meeting of the Presidents of Episcopal Conferences, and the new Apostolic Constitution concerning the Roman Curia and the Dicastery for Communication.

He said Cardinal Reinhard Marx, Coordinator for the Council of the Economy, “got everybody’s attention in talking about how to contain costs in the Vatican”.

Containing costs
Marx, he said, mentioned several proposals to help the various offices plan “multi-year budgets – so it’s not just from year to year” but with the intention of having a long-term plan that would take them “five to ten years down the road”.

Burke said Cardinal Marx also voiced the possibility that all Vatican offices “have job descriptions for each of their positions to see if there is not some possibility of being more effective, or having more mobility of jobs within the Vatican” and he laid out the possibility of “people going into early retirement”.

Burke also reiterated that Marx confirmed that although the highest cost sustained by the Vatican pertains to personnel, there is no intention to dismiss anyone.

Dicastery for Communication
The Press Office Director finally spoke of how the new Prefect of the Dicastery for Communication, Paolo Ruffini, had illustrated at what stage the Vatican Media reform finds itself, underscoring the importance of synergy and describing the criteria to be able to guarantee a unified strategy for communications.

He said that Ruffini also commented on the value of the different means of communication (radio, TV, web, social media) and on the unique richness of the Vatican’s multi-linguistic media production.
FULL TEXT Release from Vatican News va

What is St. Lucy Day - 10 Things to SHARE about #Traditions of #StLucy

1. On the 13th December St. Lucy is honored. She was a 4th century martyr from Sicily, Italy.
2. In Sweden and Norway the darkness of the day is broken by the Lucia figure dressed in a gown of white and a wreath of candles upon her head. December 13th was the longest night of the year in the Julian calendar.
3. According to tradition a white-clad woman, wearing a crown of burning candles, appeared at Sweden’s largest lake, Vänern, bringing food to starving villagers during a time of famine.
4. In Sweden and Norway, a girl is chosen to lead the Church procession with crown of candles. Similarly dressed girls (tärnor) and boys wearing a tall pointed hat carrying a star wand (stjärngossar) and follow her. Together they sing beautiful carols (see below) Once the singing is over, the procession enjoy coffee and saffron-flavored buns called lussekatter.

5. In homes the eldest daughter had the honour to be Lucia. She and her siblings woke up the family with their singing. Then the family gathered together with saffron buns at breakfast.
Saffron Buns Recipe: Ingredients: Servings: 24 Units: | 300 ml milk 1 g saffron 50 g baker's yeast 150 g sugar 125 g butter or 125 g margarine 700 g all-purpose flour 1 egg salt raisins Directions: 1 Melt butter or margarine in a pan and add the milk and the saffron. 2 Warm the mixture to 37 oC (100 oF). 3 Use a thermometer; the correct temperature is important! 4 Pour the mixture over the finely divided yeast; then add the remaining ingredients (except for the egg and the raisins), which should have a temperature of 21-23 oC (72-75 oF). 5 Mix into a smooth dough. 6 Cover the dough with a piece of cloth and let it rise for 30 minutes. 7 Knead the dough, divide it into 25-30 pieces and form each piece into a round bun. 8 Let the buns rest for a few minutes, covered by a piece of cloth. 9 Form each bun into a string, 15-20 cm long, then arrange the string in a suitable shape, e.g. an S or double S. Regardless of the shape, the ends of the string should meet. 10 Press a few raisins into the dough. 11 Cover the"Lucia cats" with a piece of cloth and let them rise for 40 minutes. 12 Whip the egg together with a few grains of salt, and paint the"Lucia cats" with the mixture. 13 Bake them for 5-10 minutes in the oven at 250 oC (475 oF) until golden brownish yellow.


SANKTA LUCIA SONG
It is traditional in Sweden to sing the Sankta Lucia song with the same melody as the well-known Italian song.
Natten går tunga fjät rund gård och stuva; kring jord, som sol förlät,skuggorna ruva. Då i vårt mörka hus, stiger med tända ljus, Sankta Lucia, Sankta Lucia. Natten går stor och stum nu hörs dess vingar i alla tysta rum sus som av vingar. Se, på vår tröskel står vitklädd med ljus i hår Sankta Lucia, Sankta Lucia. Mörkret ska flyta snart ur jordens dalar så hon ett underbart ord till oss talar. Dagen ska åter ny stiga ur rosig sky
 Sankta Lucia, Sankta Lucia. The night goes with heavy steps around farm and cottage; round the earth the sun has forsaken, the shadows are brooding.There in our darkened house, stands with lighted candles Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia. The night passes, large and mute now one hears wings in every silent room whispers as if from wings. See, on our threshold stands white-clad with candles in her hair Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia. The darkness shall soon depart from the earth's valleys then she speaks a wonderful word to us. The day shall be born anew Rising from the rosy sky. Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia.
In Italy:
6. Santa Lucia is celebrated all over Italy.
7. In Sicily she is remembered for her intervention during a severe famine in 1582. Miraculously, ships filled with grain appeared in the harbor on December 13. The people were so hungry that they boiled the grains immediately.
8. On this day a most popular dish called cuccia which is made with boiled whole wheat berries, ricotta and sugar. In Lombardy and Veneto, goose is eaten on this day.
9. Santa Lucia brings the presents to children, not Father Christmas. She travels on a donkey on the eve of December 13, and children leave bowls of milk and carrots and hay to attract the hungry donkey and make sure Santa Lucia stops at their house.
10. Children sing for this feast: Saint Lucia, Saint Lucia Fill my stocking with candies If my mother won't do it My stocking will stay empty But with father's money Saint Lucia will prevail.
SEE Also: 
Novena to St. Lucy - Patron of Blind - SHARE #Prayers to #StLucy
https://www.catholicnewsworld.com/2018/12/novena-to-st-lucy-patron-of-blind-share.html
St. Lucy Crown Recipe - Special Sweet Bread - Easy to make #StLucy - SHARE - #Recipe

Pope Francis "The rain, the harvest, the food. Biblical wisdom saw a close link between these elements...." FULL TEXT


MESSAGE OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS
TO THE PARTICIPANTS IN THE DAY
«WATER, AGRICULTURE AND FOOD: WE BUILD THE MORNING»

[Polytechnic University of Madrid, December 13, 2018]



I am grateful that you have invited me to address you at the beginning of the Conference "Water, agriculture and food. Let's build tomorrow ", organized by various academic, social and ecclesial institutions, with the participation of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organizations based in Rome.

The theme that has brought them together has reminded me of the psalmist, who acknowledges, gratefully, that "the Lord will give us the rain and our land will give its harvest" (Ps 85,13). In another moment, the prophet Isaiah compares the word of God with the rainwater that soaks the earth, making it germinate "to give seed to the sower and bread to the one who eats" (55,10). The rain, the harvest, the food. Biblical wisdom saw a close link between these elements and interpreted them from the perspective of gratitude, never from voracity or exploitation. The faith and experience of believers leads to this recognition, which transforms for us into a pressing call to responsibility, not to be caught in petty calculations that prevent helping the less favored, who are deprived of what more basic In this regard, the subtitle that they wanted to give their thoughts is inspiring, because in the word "build" is enclosed a sense of positivity, the contribution of a benefit, openness to the other, reciprocity and collaboration. These keys must not be forgotten, because the tomorrow we all want can only be the result of loyal, supportive and generous cooperation.

Indeed, the challenges of humanity in the present time are so complex that they require the sum of ideas, the unity of efforts, the complementarity of perspectives, while renouncing exclusionary selfishness and pernicious protagonism. In this way, sound decisions will be taken and solid foundations will be laid to build a fair and inclusive society, where no one is left behind. A society that puts the human person and their fundamental rights at the center, without being drawn by questionable interests that only enrich a few, unfortunately always the same. This will also be the way to ensure that future generations find a harmonious world without quarrels, with the necessary resources to enjoy a dignified and full life.

Although the land has resources for everyone, both in quantity and quality, a huge crowd of people suffer from hunger and is cruelly beaten by poverty. To eradicate these scourges, it would be enough to eliminate injustices and inequities and put in place far-sighted and far-reaching policies, effective and coordinated measures, so that no one lacks daily bread or lacks the means that are necessary to exist. Among them, water is essential and yet, unfortunately, not everyone has access to it, so it is essential that it be better distributed and managed in a sustainable and rational manner. As is also unavoidable the care and protection of the environment, guarding its beauty, preserving the copious variety of ecosystems, cultivating the fields with care, without avidity, without causing irreversible damage.

The earth must be treated with tenderness, so as not to cause it wounds, so as not to ruin the work that came out of the hands of the Creator. When this is not done, the earth ceases to be a source of life for the human family. And this is what happens in many regions of our planet, where water is contaminated, garbage accumulates, deforestation advances, air is stale and soil acidified. All this generates a harmful accumulation of ills and miseries, which we also find when food is wasted and not shared; that is why it is essential to educate children and young people to nourish themselves healthily, not simply to eat. The proper nourishment involves knowing the value of food, disengagement from the frenzied and compulsive consumerism and make the table a meeting place and fraternity, and not just the space for ostentation, waste or whims.

I ask God the Father that all those who participate in this important Day leave it with a renewed desire to make the earth the common home that welcomes us all, a home of open doors, a place of communion and beneficial coexistence. In this way, the future will be full of light and can be faced by all with confidence and hope, as the fruit of a serene present rich in seeds of virtue and hope.

I wish you all the best for your work, I am pleased to impart to you the Apostolic Blessing and I ask you, please, to pray for me.

Vatican, December 13, 2018.

Francisco

Pope Francis "In your profession you can be "living channels" of spirituality to God and to all...." FULL TEXT


ADDRESS OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS
TO THE DIRECTORS AND TO THE PERSONNEL OF TELEPACE

Sala Clementina
Thursday, December 13th 2018


Dear brothers and sisters,

I greet you with affection and I thank Don Guido Todeschini for his introductory words. Telepace has just concluded the initiatives on the occasion of its fortieth anniversary. It was a year of special gratitude to God and reflection on your professional service. In fact, even the tools of communication are a gift from God: they "have entailed a broadening of horizons for many people. This is a gift from God, and it is also a great responsibility. I like to define this power of communication as "proximity". [...] A proximity that takes care, comforts, heals, accompanies and celebrates "(Message for the 50th World Communications Day, January 24, 2016).

Telepace has always stood out for its vocation to "proximity" and for its authentic service "to God and to man in the Church", as your motto reads. It is in this context that the choice should be read, from the beginning, not to accept any kind of advertising and to live only free offers. As for the first Christians, there is a total entrustment to Providence, which rests on Jesus' invitation: "Seek first of all the kingdom of God and his justice, and all these things will be given to you in addition" (Mt 6 , 33).

Telepace was born small and limited to a few Italian provinces, with a precise objective: to be the voice of those who have no voice. I encourage you to continue to pursue it. Especially in the current time, in which the culture of waste leaves voiced more and more people. In 1990, at the wish of St. John Paul II, the Rome office was opened: the Wednesday audience, the Angelus, the Rosary and the Pope's celebrations arrive fully and directly in each house. A great relationship of relationship and affection with the See of Peter, which is also linked to the "Cenacolo Maria Stella dell'Evangelizzazione".

I am therefore happy to share this moment of celebration for your anniversary. It is not an end in itself, but an opportunity to renew the commitment taken forty years ago. For this, I would like to briefly entrust you with three commitments.

The first: to be antennas of spirituality. The image of the antenna is always beautiful and eloquent in its dual function of emitting and receiving a signal. Telepace, as a radio and television channel, is an expert in this communication process. It is up to you to know how to recognize the spiritual signs of the Father's merciful love in everything that happens. "Even today it is the Spirit who sows in us the desire of the Kingdom, through many living" channels ", through the people who allow themselves to be led by the Good News in the midst of the drama of history" (Message for the 51st World Communications Day, 24 January 2017). In your profession you can be "living channels" of spirituality to God and to all your listeners and viewers. Above all the poor, the last, the excluded. Never forget them, the poor next door! Continue to stand next to prisoners, condemned to death - this is bad, but still there is the death penalty - as when you went to the death row in Texas, where you accompanied and attended the gallows two young people, after having them comforted with the Sacraments. It is the spirituality of charity!

Second commitment: to educate young people in the school of the Gospel. One of the issues that emerged in the recent Synodal Assembly, dedicated to young people, concerns precisely their relationship with the Church. In the Final Document we read: "All young people, no one excluded, are in the heart of God and therefore also in the heart of the Church. However, we recognize frankly that this affirmation that resonates on our lips is not always a real expression in our pastoral action [...]. Yet the Gospel asks us to dare and we want to do it without presumption and without proselytizing, bearing witness to the love of the Lord and holding out his hand to all the young people of the world "(No. 117). How I would like the media to pay more attention to young people, not only by telling their failures but also their dreams and their hopes! The Gospel of joy calls us to an educational commitment that can no longer be postponed. Educating young people in the school of the Gospel means, above all, being witnesses of the only Word that saves. Your communication is outgoing, to engage in dialogue and, even before, to listen to young people. Let us remember: the Gospel asks to dare!
Third: Being storytellers who do not fall into gossip. Communication is not just transmission of news: it is availability, mutual enrichment, relationship. Unfortunately, a form of communication that has nothing to do with attention to one another and with mutual understanding continues to be widespread: it is gossip. It is a malpractice that every day undermines the human community, sowing envy, jealousy and lust for power. You can even kill a person with this weapon, either by grasping it, or by building gossip, or by passing it by hand, when listening to it, prolonging life to lie and delation. It is important, therefore, to communicate responsibly, also thinking about how bad you can do with the language, with the chatter, with the gossip. I renew, then, the invitation to "promote a journalism of peace, [...] a journalism made by people for people, and which is understood as a service to all people, especially those - are in the world the majority - who do not they have a voice, [...] a journalism committed to indicate alternative solutions to the escalation of clamor and verbal violence »(Message for the 52nd World Communications Day, 24 January 2018).

May the Lord help you never to betray the goal you carry in the name: Tele-pace. To always be a television of peace, which is a gift from God and is humble and constant conquest of humanity. Your logo is the dove that carries an olive branch in its beak. I wish you every day to be doves of peace and to fly in the ether with the two wings of prayer and charity.

Dear friends, in a few days we will live Christmas. Let us prepare ourselves for this great Mystery in silence: let the Child speak; let us leave his gaze, poor and helpless, penetrate our hearts and with his tenderness make us "channels" of peace. I thank you for your visit, I bless you and your families, and I ask you, please, to pray for me. Thank you!

#BreakingNews President Donald Trump Signs Act to Help Christians in Syria with Archbishops and Supreme Knight of Columbus

Washington (Agenzia Fides) - Yesterday the American President Donald Trump, signed the Iraq and Syria Genocide Relief and Accountability Act of 2018. The law, which defines as Genocide crimes perpetrated in recent years by Jihadists on Christians and Yazidis in Iraq and Syria, commits the US government to supplying aid to victims of violence and pursuing those responsible for such crimes. 
Among those present for the ceremony for the signing by the US President, Chaldean Catholic Archbishop Erbil Bashar Warda, Carl Anderson supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus, US Ambassador to the Holy See Callista Gingrich and Archbishop Timothy Broglio, Military Ordinary of the United States of America. 
The law increases US financial assistance for humanitarian projects, aimed at stabilising and rebuilding in favour of religious minorities in Iraq and in Syria. It ensures that U.S. aid may come through federal government or other entities, including faith-based groups.
It also enables the State Department, in collaboration with other federal agencies, to conduct criminal investigations and apprehend individuals identified as alleged ISIS members, and to identify warning signs of genocide and threats of persecution. 
Aid may also come through channels and bodies that refer directly to the federal government or also through the mediation of other bodies including those of ecclesial and religious nature. 
Moreover the act allows the US State Department to conduct penal investigations and aprehend individuals identified as presumed members of groups of Jihadist matrix, to punish or prevent violent actions towards religious minorities. President Trump himself, after signing the new law, confirmed US commitment to carry out procedures which commit US apparatus to pursuing those responsible for the crimes. 
The US House of Representatives, 27 September last, unanimously approved the HR 390 bill. Previously unanimous support had also come from the US Senate.
The signing of the law by President Trump is the result of lobbying already under the precedent Administration by US organisations such as the Knights of Columbus, In Defense of Christians, Family Research Council, Commission for Ethics and Religious Freedom of the Southern Baptist Convention, Initiative Wilberforce of the 21st century, Centre for Religious Freedom Centre - Hudson Institute. On the occasion of the signing, the US media re-proposed words related in the past to US representative Chris Smith, by the Chaldean Archbishop Bashar Warda, "Christians in Iraq are still on the edge of extinction, and the HR 390 is vital for our survival. Its implementation must be complete and swift, otherwise the help it brings will come too late for us".

USCIRF, United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, a federal independent and bipartisan institute of Congress, praised President Trump for signing the bill. "In this bill we recognise the message that those responsible for these crimes, including genocide, will not escape justice ", said Kristina Arriaga USCIRF vice president,.
The legislative move, consenting groups motivated by religious beliefs to receive financial help on the part of the United States, partly modifies the previous policy of the State Department and the US Agency for International Development, which for distribution used mainly United Nations channels – considered “neutral” from the religious point of view.
On 25 October 2017, US Vice President Mike Pence had preannounced this change in procedures used by US policy concerning funding for humanitarian emergencies (see Fides 27/11/2017). "We will no longer rely only on the United Nations organisation to assist persecuted Christians and minority communities” Pence said on occasion of the Christians in the Middle East Benefit Dinner, organised in Washington by the American organisation In Defense of Christians. The US vice President in that context, preannounced that US federal agencies would work "side by side with faith groups and private organisations to help people persecuted for their faith ". 
Earlier Chaldean Patriarch Louis Raphael Sako said in an interview “in recent years in the Middle East Christians have suffered because of injustices, violence and terrorism. But this happened also to their Muslim Iraqi brothers and sisters, and those of other religious beliefs. We must not separate Christians from the others because this only feeds a sectarian mentality”. (GV) (FULL TEXT Release from Agenzia Fides 12/12/2018).

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Thursday December 13, 2018 - #Eucharist


Memorial of Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr
Lectionary: 184

Reading 1IS 41:13-20

I am the LORD, your God,
who grasp your right hand;
It is I who say to you, "Fear not,
I will help you."
Fear not, O worm Jacob,
O maggot Israel;
I will help you, says the LORD;
your redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.
I will make of you a threshing sledge,
sharp, new, and double-edged,
To thresh the mountains and crush them,
to make the hills like chaff.
When you winnow them, the wind shall carry them off
and the storm shall scatter them.
But you shall rejoice in the LORD,
and glory in the Holy One of Israel.

The afflicted and the needy seek water in vain,
their tongues are parched with thirst.
I, the LORD, will answer them;
I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.
I will open up rivers on the bare heights,
and fountains in the broad valleys;
I will turn the desert into a marshland,
and the dry ground into springs of water.
I will plant in the desert the cedar,
acacia, myrtle, and olive;
I will set in the wasteland the cypress,
together with the plane tree and the pine,
That all may see and know,
observe and understand,
That the hand of the LORD has done this,
the Holy One of Israel has created it.

Responsorial PsalmPS 145:1 AND 9, 10-11, 12-13AB

R. (8) The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.
I will extol you, O my God and King,
and I will bless your name forever and ever.
The LORD is good to all
and compassionate toward all his works.
R. The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.
Let all your works give you thanks, O LORD,
and let your faithful ones bless you.
Let them discourse of the glory of your Kingdom
and speak of your might.
R. The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.
Let them make known to men your might
and the glorious splendor of your Kingdom.
Your Kingdom is a Kingdom for all ages,
and your dominion endures through all generations.
R. The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.

AlleluiaSEE IS 45:8

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Let the clouds rain down the Just One,
and the earth bring forth a Savior.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMT 11:11-15

Jesus said to the crowds:
"Amen, I say to you,
among those born of women
there has been none greater than John the Baptist;
yet the least in the Kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
From the days of John the Baptist until now,
the Kingdom of heaven suffers violence,
and the violent are taking it by force.
All the prophets and the law prophesied up to the time of John.
And if you are willing to accept it,
he is Elijah, the one who is to come.
Whoever has ears ought to hear."

Novena to St. Lucy - Patron of Blind - SHARE #Prayers to #StLucy

Say this prayer for 9 days:
O St Lucy, you preferred to let your eyes be torn out instead of denying the faith and defiling your soul; and God, through an extraordinary miracle, replaced them with another pair of sound and perfect eyes to reward your virtue and faith, appointing you as the protector against eye diseases. I come to you for you to protect my eyesight and to heal the illness in my eyes.
 O St Lucy, preserve the light of my eyes so that I may see the beauties of creation, the glow of the sun, the colour of the flowers and the smile of children. Preserve also the eyes of my soul, the faith, through which I can know my God, understand His teachings, recognise His love for me and never miss the road that leads me to where you, St Lucy, can be found in the company of the angels and saints. St Lucy, protect my eyes and preserve my faith. Amen.
 (Say: 1 “Our Father”, 1 “Hail Mary”, 1 “Glory be”each day of 9 days)
 O! Glorious St Lucy, Virgin and Martyr, you greatly glorified the Lord by preferring to sacrifice your life rather than be unfaithful. Come to our aid and, through the love of this same most loveable Lord, save us from all infirmities of the eyes and the danger of losing them. Through your powerful intercession, may we spend our life in the peace of the Lord and be able to see Him with our transfigured eyes in the eternal splendour of the Celestial Homeland. Amen. St Lucy, pray for us and for the most needy, to Christ our Lord. Amen.

#BreakingNews Attack in Strasbourg with 3 Killed and 12 Injured - Please Pray

Cherif flees after Strasbourg attack:
3 killed and 12 wounded
The young 29 year old of North African descent, but born in the French city, fired at a Christmas market. He later collided with the security forces. He is wounded. Six injured are in serious condition. Strasbourg (AsiaNews / Agencies) -
He is called Cherif, 29 years old, born in Strasbourg, but of North African origins, the attacker who killed three people last night in the French city and wounded 12 others. Cherif was reportedly radicalized during one of his periods in prisons and was listed as dangerous on police records. In fact security forces had wanted to arrest him just yesterday morning for involvement in a robbery with murder, but the police did not find him in his home. This is what is known until now of the young man who is still on the run, following a shootout with the police during which he was injured. The attack took place yesterday evening around 8pm (local time) at one of the Christmas markets, near the central Place Kléber. It appears to have been a terrorist attack, even if the reasons are not yet clear. At least six of the injured people are in very serious conditions. The French security forces are on full alert and in great tension, because of the anti-government demonstrations of the "yellow vests" that follow each weekend.
FULL Text Source above: Asia News IT
The Holy Father's condolences for the victims of the attack in Strasbourg, 12.12.2018

We publish below the telegram of condolences for the victims of the attack that took place yesterday evening near the Christmas Market in Strasbourg (France), sent in the name of the Holy Father Francis to S.E. Monsignor Luc Ravel, C.R.S.V., Archbishop of Strasbourg, by the Cardinal Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin:

Telegram
To His Excellency
Monsignor Luc RAVEL, C.R.S.V.
Archbishop of Strasbourg - STRASBOURG

It is with sadness and concern that His Holiness Pope Francis learned of the attack that took place last night at the Christmas market in Strasbourg, which caused several casualties. Pope Francis again expresses his firm condemnation of such acts. He shows his compassion especially to the affected families and to all those affected by this attack, assuring them of his prayer. While entrusting the dead to the mercy of God, the Holy Father has a special thought for the professionals and the volunteers who take care of the wounded. As a pledge of consolation, he implores the abundance of divine blessings on the victims, on those who assist them and on all the French people.

Cardinal Pietro Parolin
Secretary of State

St. Lucy Crown Recipe - Special Sweet Bread - Easy to make #StLucy - SHARE - #Recipe

St. Lucy is the patron saint of light. She wore a wreath of candles on her head to free her arms to carry bread to starving Christians hiding in the catacombs. This is a sweet bread called a Lucia Crown. 

Santa Lucia Crown

Ingredients:
1/2 cup warm water
2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 to 1 teaspoon saffron threads, crushed
4-1/4 to 4-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 eggs, divided use
Powdered Sugar Glaze, optional (recipe follows)
Red candied cherry halves, optional

Directions:
1) Place 1/4 cup warm water in large warm bowl. Sprinkle in yeast; stir until dissolved. Add remaining water, warm milk, sugar, butter, salt, saffron, and 1-1/2 cups flour; blend well. Stir in 2 eggs and enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 6 to 8 minutes. Place in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
2) Punch dough down. Remove dough to lightly floured surface. Divide into 3 equal pieces. Roll each into a 36-inch rope. Braid ropes. Place on a greased baking sheet and knot into a crown shaped circle. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
3) Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake crown for 25 minutes or until done, covering braid with foil during last 10 minutes to prevent excess browning. Remove braid from baking sheet and let cool on a wire rack.
4) Drizzle with Powdered Sugar Glaze and garnish with candied cherry halves. Insert candles.

Powdered Sugar Glaze: In small bowl, combine 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted; 4 to 5 teaspoons milk; and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract. Stir until smooth.