Saturday, April 13, 2019

Sunday Mass Online : Palm Sunday April 14, 2019 - Passion Readings + Video





Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion
Lectionary: 37/38
At The Procession With Palms - 
GospelLK 19:28-40 
Jesus proceeded on his journey up to Jerusalem.
As he drew near to Bethphage and Bethany
at the place called the Mount of Olives,
he sent two of his disciples.
He said, "Go into the village opposite you,
and as you enter it you will find a colt tethered
on which no one has ever sat.
Untie it and bring it here.
And if anyone should ask you,
'Why are you untying it?'
you will answer,
'The Master has need of it.'"
So those who had been sent went off
and found everything just as he had told them.
And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them,
"Why are you untying this colt?"
They answered,
"The Master has need of it."
So they brought it to Jesus,
threw their cloaks over the colt,
and helped Jesus to mount.
As he rode along,
the people were spreading their cloaks on the road;
and now as he was approaching the slope of the Mount of Olives,
the whole multitude of his disciples
began to praise God aloud with joy
for all the mighty deeds they had seen.
They proclaimed:
"Blessed is the king who comes
in the name of the Lord.
Peace in heaven
and glory in the highest."
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him,
"Teacher, rebuke your disciples."
He said in reply,
"I tell you, if they keep silent,
the stones will cry out!"

At The Mass – Reading IIS 50:4-7

The Lord GOD has given me
a well-trained tongue,
that I might know how to speak to the weary
a word that will rouse them.
Morning after morning
he opens my ear that I may hear;
and I have not rebelled,
have not turned back.
I gave my back to those who beat me,
my cheeks to those who plucked my beard;
my face I did not shield
from buffets and spitting.

The Lord GOD is my help,
therefore I am not disgraced;
I have set my face like flint,
knowing that I shall not be put to shame.

Responsorial PsalmPS 22:8-9, 17-18, 19-20, 23-24.

R. (2a)  My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?
All who see me scoff at me;
they mock me with parted lips, they wag their heads:
"He relied on the LORD; let him deliver him,
let him rescue him, if he loves him."
R. My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?
Indeed, many dogs surround me,
a pack of evildoers closes in upon me;
They have pierced my hands and my feet;
I can count all my bones.
R. My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?
They divide my garments among them,
and for my vesture they cast lots.
But you, O LORD, be not far from me;
O my help, hasten to aid me.
R. My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?
I will proclaim your name to my brethren;
in the midst of the assembly I will praise you:
"You who fear the LORD, praise him;
all you descendants of Jacob, give glory to him;
 revere him, all you descendants of Israel!"
R. My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?

Reading 2PHIL 2:6-11

Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God,
did not regard equality with God
something to be grasped.
Rather, he emptied himself,
taking the form of a slave,
coming in human likeness;
and found human in appearance,
he humbled himself,
becoming obedient to the point of death,
even death on a cross.
Because of this, God greatly exalted him
and bestowed on him the name
which is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus
every knee should bend,
of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that
Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.

Verse Before The GospelPHIL 2:8-9

Christ became obedient to the point of death,
even death on a cross.
because of this, God greatly exalted him
and bestowed on him the name which is above every name.

GospelLK 22:14—23:56

When the hour came,
Jesus took his place at table with the apostles.
He said to them,
"I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer,
for, I tell you, I shall not eat it again
until there is fulfillment in the kingdom of God."
Then he took a cup, gave thanks, and said,
"Take this and share it among yourselves;
for I tell you that from this time on
I shall not drink of the fruit of the vine
until the kingdom of God comes."
Then he took the bread, said the blessing,
broke it, and gave it to them, saying,
"This is my body, which will be given for you;
do this in memory of me."
And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying,
"This cup is the new covenant in my blood,
which will be shed for you.

"And yet behold, the hand of the one who is to betray me
is with me on the table;
for the Son of Man indeed goes as it has been determined;
but woe to that man by whom he is betrayed."
And they began to debate among themselves
who among them would do such a deed.

Then an argument broke out among them
about which of them should be regarded as the greatest.
He said to them,
"The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them
and those in authority over them are addressed as 'Benefactors';
but among you it shall not be so.
Rather, let the greatest among you be as the youngest,
and the leader as the servant.
For who is greater:
the one seated at table or the one who serves?
Is it not the one seated at table?
I am among you as the one who serves.
It is you who have stood by me in my trials;
and I confer a kingdom on you,
just as my Father has conferred one on me,
that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom;
and you will sit on thrones
judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

"Simon, Simon, behold Satan has demanded
to sift all of you like wheat,
but I have prayed that your own faith may not fail;
and once you have turned back,
you must strengthen your brothers."
He said to him,
"Lord, I am prepared to go to prison and to die with you."
But he replied,
"I tell you, Peter, before the cock crows this day,
you will deny three times that you know me."

He said to them,
"When I sent you forth without a money bag or a sack or sandals,
were you in need of anything?"
"No, nothing, " they replied.
He said to them,
"But now one who has a money bag should take it,
and likewise a sack,
and one who does not have a sword
should sell his cloak and buy one.
For I tell you that this Scripture must be fulfilled in me,
namely, He was counted among the wicked;
and indeed what is written about me is coming to fulfillment."
Then they said,
"Lord, look, there are two swords here."
But he replied, "It is enough!"

Then going out, he went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives,
and the disciples followed him.
When he arrived at the place he said to them,
"Pray that you may not undergo the test."
After withdrawing about a stone's throw from them and kneeling,
he prayed, saying, "Father, if you are willing,
take this cup away from me;
still, not my will but yours be done."
And to strengthen him an angel from heaven appeared to him.
He was in such agony and he prayed so fervently
that his sweat became like drops of blood
falling on the ground.
When he rose from prayer and returned to his disciples,
he found them sleeping from grief.
He said to them, "Why are you sleeping?
Get up and pray that you may not undergo the test."

While he was still speaking, a crowd approached
and in front was one of the Twelve, a man named Judas.
He went up to Jesus to kiss him.
Jesus said to him,
"Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?"
His disciples realized what was about to happen, and they asked,
"Lord, shall we strike with a sword?"
And one of them struck the high priest's servant
and cut off his right ear.
But Jesus said in reply,
"Stop, no more of this!"
Then he touched the servant's ear and healed him.
And Jesus said to the chief priests and temple guards
and elders who had come for him,
"Have you come out as against a robber, with swords and clubs?
Day after day I was with you in the temple area,
and you did not seize me;
but this is your hour, the time for the power of darkness."

After arresting him they led him away
and took him into the house of the high priest;
Peter was following at a distance.
They lit a fire in the middle of the courtyard and sat around it,
and Peter sat down with them.
When a maid saw him seated in the light,
she looked intently at him and said,
"This man too was with him."
But he denied it saying,
"Woman, I do not know him."
A short while later someone else saw him and said,
"You too are one of them";
but Peter answered, "My friend, I am not."
About an hour later, still another insisted,
"Assuredly, this man too was with him,
for he also is a Galilean."
But Peter said,
"My friend, I do not know what you are talking about."
Just as he was saying this, the cock crowed,
and the Lord turned and looked at Peter;
and Peter remembered the word of the Lord,
how he had said to him,
"Before the cock crows today, you will deny me three times."
He went out and began to weep bitterly.
The men who held Jesus in custody were ridiculing and beating him.
They blindfolded him and questioned him, saying,
"Prophesy!  Who is it that struck you?"
And they reviled him in saying many other things against him.

When day came the council of elders of the people met,
both chief priests and scribes,
and they brought him before their Sanhedrin.
They said, "If you are the Christ, tell us, "
but he replied to them, "If I tell you, you will not believe,
and if I question, you will not respond.
But from this time on the Son of Man will be seated
at the right hand of the power of God."
They all asked, "Are you then the Son of God?"
He replied to them, "You say that I am."
Then they said, "What further need have we for testimony?
We have heard it from his own mouth."

Then the whole assembly of them arose and brought him before Pilate.
They brought charges against him, saying,
"We found this man misleading our people;
he opposes the payment of taxes to Caesar
and maintains that he is the Christ, a king."
Pilate asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?"
He said to him in reply, "You say so."
Pilate then addressed the chief priests and the crowds,
"I find this man not guilty."
But they were adamant and said,
"He is inciting the people with his teaching throughout all Judea,
from Galilee where he began even to here."

On hearing this Pilate asked if the man was a Galilean;
and upon learning that he was under Herod's jurisdiction,
he sent him to Herod who was in Jerusalem at that time.
Herod was very glad to see Jesus;
he had been wanting to see him for a long time,
for he had heard about him
and had been hoping to see him perform some sign.
He questioned him at length,
but he gave him no answer.
The chief priests and scribes, meanwhile,
stood by accusing him harshly.
Herod and his soldiers treated him contemptuously and mocked him,
and after clothing him in resplendent garb,
he sent him back to Pilate.
Herod and Pilate became friends that very day,
even though they had been enemies formerly.
Pilate then summoned the chief priests, the rulers, and the people
and said to them, "You brought this man to me
and accused him of inciting the people to revolt.
I have conducted my investigation in your presence
and have not found this man guilty
of the charges you have brought against him,
nor did Herod, for he sent him back to us.
So no capital crime has been committed by him.
Therefore I shall have him flogged and then release him."

But all together they shouted out,
"Away with this man!
Release Barabbas to us."
— Now Barabbas had been imprisoned for a rebellion
that had taken place in the city and for murder. —
Again Pilate addressed them, still wishing to release Jesus,
but they continued their shouting,
"Crucify him!  Crucify him!"
Pilate addressed them a third time,
"What evil has this man done?
I found him guilty of no capital crime.
Therefore I shall have him flogged and then release him."
With loud shouts, however,
they persisted in calling for his crucifixion,
and their voices prevailed.
The verdict of Pilate was that their demand should be granted.
So he released the man who had been imprisoned
for rebellion and murder, for whom they asked,
and he handed Jesus over to them to deal with as they wished.

As they led him away
they took hold of a certain Simon, a Cyrenian,
who was coming in from the country;
and after laying the cross on him,
they made him carry it behind Jesus.
A large crowd of people followed Jesus,
including many women who mourned and lamented him.
Jesus turned to them and said,
"Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me;
weep instead for yourselves and for your children
for indeed, the days are coming when people will say,
'Blessed are the barren,
the wombs that never bore
and the breasts that never nursed.'
At that time people will say to the mountains,
'Fall upon us!'
and to the hills, 'Cover us!'
for if these things are done when the wood is green
what will happen when it is dry?"
Now two others, both criminals,
were led away with him to be executed.

When they came to the place called the Skull,
they crucified him and the criminals there,
one on his right, the other on his left.
Then Jesus said,
"Father, forgive them, they know not what they do."
They divided his garments by casting lots.
The people stood by and watched;
the rulers, meanwhile, sneered at him and said,
"He saved others, let him save himself
if he is the chosen one, the Christ of God."
Even the soldiers jeered at him.
As they approached to offer him wine they called out,
"If you are King of the Jews, save yourself."
Above him there was an inscription that read,
"This is the King of the Jews."

Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying,
"Are you not the Christ?
Save yourself and us."
The other, however, rebuking him, said in reply,
"Have you no fear of God,
for you are subject to the same condemnation?
And indeed, we have been condemned justly,
for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes,
but this man has done nothing criminal."
Then he said,
"Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom."
He replied to him,
"Amen, I say to you,
today you will be with me in Paradise."

It was now about noon and darkness came over the whole land
until three in the afternoon
because of an eclipse of the sun.
Then the veil of the temple was torn down the middle.
Jesus cried out in a loud voice,
"Father, into your hands I commend my spirit";
and when he had said this he breathed his last.

Here all kneel and pause for a short time.

The centurion who witnessed what had happened glorified God and said,
"This man was innocent beyond doubt."
When all the people who had gathered for this spectacle saw what had happened,
they returned home beating their breasts;
but all his acquaintances stood at a distance,
including the women who had followed him from Galilee
and saw these events.

Now there was a virtuous and righteous man named Joseph who,
though he was a member of the council,
had not consented to their plan of action.
He came from the Jewish town of Arimathea
and was awaiting the kingdom of God.
He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus.
After he had taken the body down,
he wrapped it in a linen cloth
and laid him in a rock-hewn tomb
in which no one had yet been buried.
It was the day of preparation,
and the sabbath was about to begin.
The women who had come from Galilee with him followed behind,
and when they had seen the tomb
and the way in which his body was laid in it,
they returned and prepared spices and perfumed oils.
Then they rested on the sabbath according to the commandment.

OrLK 23:1-49

The elders of the people, chief priests and scribes,
arose and brought Jesus before Pilate.
They brought charges against him, saying,
"We found this man misleading our people;
he opposes the payment of taxes to Caesar
and maintains that he is the Christ, a king."
Pilate asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?"
He said to him in reply, "You say so."
Pilate then addressed the chief priests and the crowds,
"I find this man not guilty."
But they were adamant and said,
"He is inciting the people with his teaching throughout all Judea,
from Galilee where he began even to here."

On hearing this Pilate asked if the man was a Galilean;
and upon learning that he was under Herod's jurisdiction,
he sent him to Herod who was in Jerusalem at that time.
Herod was very glad to see Jesus;
he had been wanting to see him for a long time,
for he had heard about him
and had been hoping to see him perform some sign.
He questioned him at length,
but he gave him no answer.
The chief priests and scribes, meanwhile,
stood by accusing him harshly.
Herod and his soldiers treated him contemptuously and mocked him,
and after clothing him in resplendent garb,
he sent him back to Pilate.
Herod and Pilate became friends that very day,
even though they had been enemies formerly.
Pilate then summoned the chief priests, the rulers, and the people
and said to them, "You brought this man to me
and accused him of inciting the people to revolt.
I have conducted my investigation in your presence
and have not found this man guilty
of the charges you have brought against him,
nor did Herod, for he sent him back to us.
So no capital crime has been committed by him.
Therefore I shall have him flogged and then release him."

But all together they shouted out,
"Away with this man!
Release Barabbas to us."
— Now Barabbas had been imprisoned for a rebellion
that had taken place in the city and for murder. —
Again Pilate addressed them, still wishing to release Jesus,
but they continued their shouting,
"Crucify him!  Crucify him!"
Pilate addressed them a third time,
"What evil has this man done?
I found him guilty of no capital crime.
Therefore I shall have him flogged and then release him."
With loud shouts, however,
they persisted in calling for his crucifixion,
and their voices prevailed.
The verdict of Pilate was that their demand should be granted.
So he released the man who had been imprisoned
for rebellion and murder, for whom they asked,
and he handed Jesus over to them to deal with as they wished.

As they led him away
they took hold of a certain Simon, a Cyrenian,
who was coming in from the country;
and after laying the cross on him,
they made him carry it behind Jesus.
A large crowd of people followed Jesus,
including many women who mourned and lamented him.
Jesus turned to them and said,
"Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me;
weep instead for yourselves and for your children
for indeed, the days are coming when people will say,
'Blessed are the barren,
the wombs that never bore
and the breasts that never nursed.'
At that time people will say to the mountains,
'Fall upon us!'
and to the hills, 'Cover us!'
for if these things are done when the wood is green
what will happen when it is dry?"
Now two others, both criminals,
were led away with him to be executed.

When they came to the place called the Skull,
they crucified him and the criminals there,
one on his right, the other on his left.
Then Jesus said,
"Father, forgive them, they know not what they do."
They divided his garments by casting lots.
The people stood by and watched;
the rulers, meanwhile, sneered at him and said,
"He saved others, let him save himself
if he is the chosen one, the Christ of God."
Even the soldiers jeered at him.
As they approached to offer him wine they called out,
"If you are King of the Jews, save yourself."
Above him there was an inscription that read,
"This is the King of the Jews."

Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying,
"Are you not the Christ?
Save yourself and us."
The other, however, rebuking him, said in reply,
"Have you no fear of God,
for you are subject to the same condemnation?
And indeed, we have been condemned justly,
for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes,
but this man has done nothing criminal."
Then he said,
"Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom."
He replied to him,
"Amen, I say to you,
today you will be with me in Paradise."

It was now about noon and darkness came over the whole land
until three in the afternoon
because of an eclipse of the sun.
Then the veil of the temple was torn down the middle.
Jesus cried out in a loud voice,
"Father, into your hands I commend my spirit";
and when he had said this he breathed his last.

Here all kneel and pause for a short time.

The centurion who witnessed what had happened glorified God and said,
"This man was innocent beyond doubt."
When all the people who had gathered for this spectacle
saw what had happened,
they returned home beating their breasts;
but all his acquaintances stood at a distance,
including the women who had followed him from Galilee
and saw these events. 
Image Source - Google Images of Christ's Entry into Jerusalem (1846), by Jean-Hippolyte Flandrin, in the Church of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, Paris

Saint April 14 : St. Lydwine of Schiedam - Patron of Ice Skaters and Chronically Ill

Born at Schiedam, Holland, 18 April 1380;
Died 14 April, 1433.
Patronof sickness; chronically ill, ice skaters, town of Schiedam
Her father, Peter by name, came of a noble family while her mother Petronella, born at Kethel, Holland, was a poor country girl. Both were poor. Very early in her life St. Lidwina was drawn towards the Mother of God and prayed a great deal before the miraculous image of Our Lady of Schiedam. During the winter of the year of 1395, Lidwina went skating with her friends, one of whom caused her to fall upon some ice with such violence that she broke a rib in her right side. This was the beginning of her martyrdom. No medical skill availed to cure her. Gangrene appeared in the wound caused by the fall and spread over her entire body. For years she lay in pain which seemed to increase constantly. Some looked on her with suspicion, as being under the influence of the evil spirit. Her pastor, Andries, brought her an unconsecrated host, but the saint distinguished it at once. But God rewarded her with a wonderful gift of prayer and also with visions. Numerous miracles took place at her bed-side. The celebrated preacher and seer, Wermbold of Roskoop, visited her after previously beholding her in spirit. The pious Arnold of Schoonhoven treated her as a friend. Hendrik Mande wrote for her consolation a pious tract in Dutch. When Joannes Busch brought this to her, he asked her what she thought of Hendrik Mande's visions, and she answered that they came from God. In a vision she was shown a rose-bush with the words, "When this shall be in bloom, your suffering will be at an end." In the spring of the year 1433, she exclaimed, "I see the rose-bush in full bloom!" From her fifteenth to her fifty-third year, she suffered every imaginable pain; she was one sore from head to foot and was greatly emaciated. On the morning of Easter-day, 1433, she was in deep contemplation and beheld, in a vision, Christ coming towards her to administer the Sacrament of Extreme Unction. She died in the odour of great sanctity. At once her grave became a place of pilgrimage, and as early as 1434 a chapel was built over it. Joannes Brugmann and Thomas à Kempis related the history of her life, and veneration of her on the part of the people increased unceasingly. In 1615 her relics were conveyed to Brussels, but in 1871 they were returned to Schiedam. On 14 March, 1890, Leo XIII put the official sanction of the Church upon that veneration which had existed for centuries.
Shared From The Catholic Encyclopedia

Wow Pope Francis makes Surprise visit to Alzheimer Patients for Mercy Friday - Video


Press Release of the Holy See Press Office: Pope Francis, as part of the "Friday of Mercy", visit the "Emanuele Village" in the northern suburbs of Rome, 12.04.2019


At 3.30 pm this afternoon, continuing the pastoral commitment of the Fridays of Mercy, the Holy Father Francis left Casa Santa Marta to visit the Emanuele alla Bufalotta Village, on the northern outskirts of Rome, accompanied - as usual in these visits - by himself Mons. Rino Fisichella, President of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization.

The Villaggio Emanuele rises inside the Parco delle Sabine and is a structure dedicated to the care of people suffering from Alzheimer's disease, organized as a real village, which allows guests to live in normal conditions, reproducing many small aspects of daily life, necessary for those who live this difficult pathology to create and maintain a bridge of communication with the outside, promoting socialization and inclusion. The village is named after its founder Prof. Emmanuele F.M. Emanuele, Honorary President of the Rome Foundation, who with farsightedness did his utmost to find an innovative solution for residential care for people suffering from Alzheimer's.

Upon his arrival, the Pope was greeted with astonishment by the residents and staff in the courtyard of the Village. The Holy Father greeted all those present, exchanging a few words of comfort with each of them.

The residents, together with the honorary president of the Rome Foundation, Prof. Emanuele, and the current incumbent president, Franco Parasassi, accompanied the Pope to the various areas of the structure available to the residents: some guests who rested in their rooms received the unexpected visit and were able to spend time and exchange some words with Pope Francis; others, engaged in recreational activities, explained to the Holy Father their daily duties in the Village. The Pope's presence was lived by all as a gift and a moment of joy.

With this visit, the Holy Father wished to turn his attention to the conditions of exclusion and loneliness that a disease such as Alzheimer's disease is likely to generate in people who are often left alone by society, creating strong disorientation, distress and suffering in the family The progressive increase in life expectancy also calls for greater awareness and respect for the needs and dignity of those who live this disease on themselves and those who are close to the patient.

Before leaving the Emanuele Village, the Holy Father donated a scroll with a handwritten thought and a canvas depicting the Nativity.

At the end of the visit, the Pope returned to the Vatican.

* * *
Villaggio Emanuele, the only one in Italy, is born from the awareness that Alzheimer's has become a social priority and that therefore it requires the institution of a social-assistance model that can ensure a life as close to normality as possible, during the long course of the disease. The structure consists of 14 houses, each of which accommodates 6 people. In addition to the accommodations, there is a minimarket, a bar, a restaurant and a beauty salon that are available to residents. All these services were visited by Pope Francis during the visit.

The Village is also open to the territory, in order to offer a stimulating environment, as close as possible to the external environment. Patients, simply called residents, can shop at the supermarket, help kitchen workers, take care of home management, thus maintaining a sense of reality and their own identity. Each accommodation is designed to be a family place, as close as possible to the home of origin, with spaces and furnishings designed according to the style that has characterized the life of each resident.

In the structure there are various medical and social-assistance figures: health workers, social assistants, professional educators, psychologists, physiotherapists, nurses, in addition to the general practitioner. The operators help the guests to articulate, according to their needs, the daily experience in the Village. There are several activities on offer: art, music, sports, reading books, are just some of the activities that mark the day of the residents. There is no "typical day" for people living in the Village, as everyone is free to choose the course of daily life as they see fit. Assistance in both residential and semi-residential situations is completely free.


 FULL TEXT + Image Source: Blog Share from Vatican.va- Unofficial Translation

#BreakingNews 3 Historic African-American Churches Set on Fire with Suspect Arrested


A suspect, age 21, has been arrest for the burning of 3 Black Churches in 10 Days in a Single Louisiana Parish.
Mount Pleasant Baptist Church in Opelousas, La., is one of three historically black churches that have recently burned in St. Landry Parish.

 Three historically black churches have burned in less than two weeks in one south Louisiana parish, where officials said they had found “suspicious elements” in each case.


The three fires occurred on March 26, Tuesday and Thursday in St. Landry Parish, north of Lafayette. A fourth fire, a small blaze that officials said was “intentionally set,” was reported on Sunday at a predominantly black church in Caddo Parish, about a three-hour drive north.


The Rev. Gerald Toussaint, pastor at Mount Pleasant Baptist Church in Opelousas, La., was aware of the two other fires that had been set at nearby houses of worship, St. Mary Baptist Church in Port Barre, and Greater Union Baptist Church in Opelousas. He rushed to the scene.


The church, which was founded in the 19th century, had undergone extensive remodeling two years ago. Now it is nearly gone, he said, except for a brick wall and corridor in the front.

Edited from the New York Times and Global News

Pope Francis tells Students "Free yourself from cell phone addiction, please!" Full Text + Video


MEETING OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS
WITH THE STUDENTS OF "VISCONTI" HIGH SCHOOL OF ROME,
ON THE OCCASION OF THE ALOISIAN JUBILEE YEAR

Paul VI Hall
Saturday, April 13, 2019

Dear boys and girls, and non-boys and non-girls, good morning to all!

I am happy to welcome you together with your teachers, your families and many friends involved in the solidarity initiatives that make your educational journey complete. I greet you all with affection and I thank Mrs Dean for her words: she did not spare words or images, in the real, concrete description of the situation in the present world and of the attitudes that we must carry forward. Thank you, Madam, and keep it up: without words. Forward!

Yours is a school community that seeks to unite, with education, the global formation of the citizen and the Christian. And if you go this way, in your institution, in your High School, what is unfortunately true in so many other parts will not be true: that the educational pact has broken. I see that the educational pact between educators, families, you guys, volunteers is united and this makes you grow enough. Throughout its history it has had among its students - as Mrs. Preside said - Eugenio Pacelli, the future Pope Pius XII, and Franco Modigliani, the future Nobel Prize in Economics. The educational history of the famous Collegio Romano continues in your scholastic institute, located in the building commissioned by Saint Ignatius of Loyola and inaugurated by Pope Gregory XIII in 1583. Important figures who have contributed to the progress of science and growth have emerged from that College of society, favoring a constructive dialogue between faith and reason. The values ​​of the Gospel, which have animated the culture of generations and generations of Italians, can still illuminate consciences, families, communities, so that in every field one operates in respect for moral values ​​and for the good of man.

In those classrooms, which are yours today, great scientists like the fathers Clavius, Kircher and Secchi have taught, and many young people who have marked the history of the modern Church have prepared to leave for the missions. I am thinking in particular of Father Matteo Ricci, one of the first to establish a bridge of friendship between China and the West, implementing a still valid model of inculturation of the Christian message in the Chinese world. To you the task of taking this torch and carrying on, in the changed historical and social conditions, this passion for knowledge and culture that has characterized those who preceded you. I said passion. Unfortunately many times, in front of culture, indifference is found in front of science. No: passion.

The school as such is everyone's good and must remain a forge in which we educate ourselves about inclusion, respect for diversity and collaboration. Inclusion, respect for diversity to collaborate. Please don't be afraid of diversity. Dialogue between different cultures, different people enriches a country, enriches the homeland and keeps us going with mutual respect, keeps us going, looking at a land for everyone, not just for some. It is a laboratory that anticipates what the community should be in the future. And this is where the religious experience plays an important role, in which all that is authentically human enters. The Church is committed, in the wake of the Second Vatican Council, to promoting the universal value of fraternity which is based on freedom, on the honest search for truth, on the promotion of justice and solidarity, especially towards the weakest people. When there is no freedom there is no education, no future. When there is no honest search for the truth but there is an imposed truth, which takes away from you the ability to seek the truth, there is no future: it cancels you as a person. And when there is no promotion of justice, we will certainly end up in a pusillanimous, selfish country that only works for a few. Without the attention and the search for these values ​​there can be no real peaceful coexistence. When there is injustice, hatred, confrontation begins and ends ... we all know how it ends. With satisfaction I had confirmation from the words of the Dean that your school, together with classical culture, promotes these values ​​in various forms. Go ahead with courage on this road! It is not easy, but it is the only road capable of bearing fruit, of giving great fruits for each of you and for your country.
In the same building as your school, there is the monumental Church of St. Ignatius, in whose interior lie the remains of St. Luigi Gonzaga, whose Jubilee Year is underway for the 450th anniversary of his birth. He attended as a student the same environments that you attend today. St. Louis is the patron saint of youth; for this reason I like to recall some themes that I draw from the history of this great saint and which seem to me very current.

First of all I want to remind you that Luigi Gonzaga was able to make important choices for his life, without letting himself be carried away by careerism and the god of money. There is a great need for young people who know how to act in this way, putting the common good before personal interests! To succeed in doing this it is necessary to take care of one's own interiority, through study, research, educational dialogue, prayer and listening to one's conscience. I say to you, here, young people, students of the institute: have you learned to listen to your conscience? Do you know what happens inside you? You have learned this healthy introspection - not that sick introspection of neurotics - healthy introspection: what goes inside me, what's going on inside me? It is more than a science, it is a wisdom, not to become a wind vane that moves in the wind from one side to the other. Think well about this. And it would also be nice that among you, as a group, with the leaders of the institute you reflected on what conscience is, what happens in the conscience, how can I find what happens to me, how good attitudes grow in consciousness? not good attitudes ... Do this experience: it will be very useful. And this presupposes the ability to carve out spaces of silence. Don't be afraid of silence, of being alone - not always, no, because this is not good - but taking some time alone, carving out spaces for silence. Do not be afraid of silence, to write your own diary, for example, in silence. Do not be afraid of the inconveniences and dryness that silence can bring. "Ah, I don't, silence is boring!" At the beginning, it may be, but then, as you go into yourself, in silence, it no longer bores you. Free yourself from cell phone addiction, please! You surely have heard of the addiction drama. "Sure, yes, Father." Addictions to noise: if there is no noise I don't feel well ...; and many other dependencies. But this one is very thin, very thin. The mobile phone is a great help, it is a great progress; should be used, it's nice that everyone knows how to use it. But when you become a slave to the phone, you lose your freedom. The mobile phone is for communicating, for communication: it is so nice to communicate between us. But be careful, that there is a danger that, when the mobile phone is drugs, communication is reduced to simple "contacts". But life is not to "contact", it is to communicate! Let us remember what St. Augustine wrote: "in interior homine habitat veritas" (De vera rel., 39, 72). The truth lives within the person. We need to look for it. It is valid for everyone, for those who believe and for those who do not believe. We have all the interior life. Only in inner silence can the voice of conscience be grasped and distinguished from the voices of selfishness and hedonism, which are different voices.

The ability to love with a pure and free heart is known of St. Louis. Only those who love come to know God. In affective life, two dimensions are essential: modesty and fidelity. Love with modesty, not brazenly. And remain faithful in love. Love is not a game: love is the most beautiful thing that God has given us, the ability to love. "God is love," says the Bible, and God gave us this ability. Don't dirty it with the impudence of non-modesty and infidelity. Love cleanly, but great! To love with an enlarged heart every day: that wisdom to widen the heart, not to make it small, hard as stone. Widen it. And God told his people, as a great promise, that he would take away his heart of stone and give him a heart of flesh. Enlarge the heart of flesh: this is to love. With fidelity and modesty. The sense of modesty refers to a vigilant conscience defending the dignity of the person and authentic love, precisely in order not to trivialize body language. Fidelity, together with respect for the other, is an essential dimension of every true love relationship, since you cannot play with feelings. But loving is not just an expression of the affective bond of a couple or a strong, beautiful and fraternal friendship. A concrete form of love is also given by the commitment to solidarity with others, especially the poorest. Love of neighbor feeds on imagination and always goes further: things are invented to help, to move forward ... The fantasy of love. Don't be afraid of this. Love goes beyond the walls, beyond the differences, beyond obstacles. Also in this S. Luigi is a model, because he died consuming himself in the service of the plague patients, that is of people who were on the margins of society and rejected by all. Love has taken him further, beyond ... The fantasy of love. Don't forget this word: the fantasy of love. Love is creative and always goes on.

I am delighted to see that friends are present here today who, as a school community, welcome, putting themselves at their service with the popular canteen on Saturday. The commitment of many of you to volunteering is a sign of hope. Volunteering is one of the most beautiful and strongest things that Italy has: please keep it well. Grow in volunteering. Do not let yourself be overcome in generosity: the volunteer always goes beyond, in generosity, he does not let himself be won! The same family, social and couple life relationships are enriched when the dimension of free service is present. In this regard, I like to quote Archbishop Tonino Bello, an exemplary Churchman and witness of charity. He loved to repeat: "He who does not live to serve does not serve to live".

Dear young students, do not stop dreaming big - this is a beautiful thing for young people: to dream big - and to desire a better world for everyone. Don't settle for mediocrity in the relationships between you, in the care of interiority, in planning your future, in your commitment to a more just and beautiful world. Tomorrow, Palm Sunday, begins the Holy Week which will culminate on Easter, when we will celebrate the resurrection of Christ, the foundation of Christian hope. I offer each of you the best wishes for holy Easter holidays. Easter is the time of renewal of the promises of Baptism, it is also a time of renewal of the soul: it is time to flourish! I invite you to do so with conviction and trust in the love of the Lord. It is He who gives you and will always give you strength and courage in the difficulties you encounter on your way.

And then I would like to add something that came to my mind while listening to your Headmaster. In your institute, there are no wars or aggressions. It gives me so much pain to see when in some school there is bullying. Fight against this aggression that is truly a seed of war, fight. May there be peace, without aggression towards anyone, without bullying. No bullying in your institution!

I thank you for this meeting. I bless you here present, I bless your friends and loved ones. And I ask you to please pray for me. Thanks and Happy Easter!

And now I give the blessing to all of you, to all your friends, to all the people who study, working in the institute at different levels, to families.

[Blessing]
 FULL TEXT + Image Source: Blog Share from Vatican.va- Unofficial Translation

#BreakingNews 3 US citizens Arrested for giving out Bibles in Laos - Please Pray


AsiaNews Report: Vientiane arrests three US citizens over distribution of material on Christianity
Wayne, Autumn and Joseph have been held at their hotel for six days. The US embassy in Laos was informed and is following  the case. A local Christian group is trying to help the three. The authorities of the Buddhist country consider Christianity a "foreign religion". The government does not have diplomatic relations with the Holy See.


Vientiane (AsiaNews / Rfa) - The Laos authorities have arrested three US citizens in the Sing district (Luang Namtha province) for distributing bibles and other (Protestant) evangelical material. This was denounced by Vision Beyond Borders (Vbb), a Christian organization based in the USA.

Identified by their organization only with their names, Wayne, Autumn and Joseph are believed to have been detained at the hotel for six days, after visiting villages in northern Laos to distribute religious material. "It seems that the interrogations are proceeding slowly. [Police officers] They took them to a room and told them they would be back in 10 minutes, but they disappeared for four to five hours, "says Eric Blievernicht, Head of VBB Operations.

Blievernicht states that he is aware that the US embassy in Laos has been informed and has been involved in the case; he adds that only the three Americans have been arrested and that there are no Laotians among them. A US State Department spokesman announced last night that he could "confirm the temporary detention and subsequent release of three US citizens in Luang Namtha, Laos".

An official from the Luang Namtha Police Department confirms that the three were arrested but denies that they are detained. "What we know about these three individuals is that they are not in custody. Their passports have just been confiscated, "he reports.

A local Christian group is trying to help the three. "We have just learned of this and are traveling to the province of Luang Namtha to assist these three Americans," the leader of a church in Vientiane declared on condition of anonymity.

Although the Constitution of the Laotian communist regime claims to protect religious freedom, the authorities of the Buddhist country consider Christianity a "foreign religion". In Laos, the Catholic community is a small minority: its faithful number around 45 thousand and represent 0.7% of the country's 7.1 million inhabitants. The situation of the Church in Laos remains delicate, as the government exercises strict control over religions and does not have diplomatic relations with the Holy See. The difficult relations between Church and State are accentuated above all in local governments and among citizens.
FULL TEXT Souce: Asia News IT

Pope Francis speaks on Organ Donation "...through information, awareness and your constant...without risk or disproportionate consequences, in living donation, and all the organs after their death."


SPEECH OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS
AT THE ITALIAN ASSOCIATION FOR THE DONATION
OF ORGANS, TISSUES AND CELLS (AIDO)

Sala Clementina
Saturday, April 13, 2019

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

I am pleased to welcome all of you, volunteers of the Italian Association of Organ Donors (AIDO), gathered here representing thousands of people who have chosen to testify and spread the values ​​of sharing and donation, without asking anything in return. I cordially greet you and thank your President, Dr. Flavia Petrin, for the words with which she introduced this meeting.

The developments in transplantation medicine have made it possible to donate organs to save other human lives after death, and in some cases even in life (such as in the case of the kidney); to preserve, recover and improve the health of many sick people who have no other alternative. Organ donation responds to a social need because, despite the development of many medical treatments, the need for organs still remains great. However, the meaning of the donation for the donor, for the recipient, for society, does not end in its "utility", since it is a deeply human experience full of love and altruism. Donation means looking and going beyond oneself, beyond individual needs and opening oneself generously towards a wider good. In this perspective, organ donation arises not only as an act of social responsibility, but as an expression of universal brotherhood that binds all men and women together.

In this regard, the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that "organ donation after death is a noble and meritorious act and should be encouraged as a manifestation of generous solidarity" (n. 2296). By virtue of the intrinsic relational dimension of the human being, each of us realizes himself also through the participation in the realization of the good of others. Each subject represents a good not only for himself, but for the whole society; hence the meaning of the commitment to the achievement of the good of others.

In the Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, St. John Paul II reminded us that, among the gestures that contribute to nourish an authentic culture of life "the donation of organs carried out in ethically acceptable forms deserves a particular appreciation - this should be underlined -, to offer a possibility of health and even life for sick people who are sometimes without hope "(n. 86). This is why it is important to keep organ donation as an unpaid free act. In fact, any form of commodification of the body or part of it is contrary to human dignity. In giving blood or an organ to the body, it is necessary to respect the ethical and religious perspective.

For those who do not have a religious faith, the gesture towards the needy brothers asks to be performed on the basis of an ideal of disinterested human solidarity. Believers are called to live it as an offering to the Lord, who has identified himself with those who suffer because of illness, road accidents or accidents at work. It is good for Jesus' disciples to offer their organs, in the terms allowed by law and morality, because it is a gift made to the suffering Lord, who said that everything we did to a brother in need 'we have done to him (see Mt 25:40).

It is therefore important to promote a culture of donation which, through information, awareness and your constant and appreciated commitment, favors this offer of a part of your body, without risk or disproportionate consequences, in living donation, and all the organs after their death. From our own death and from our gift life and health of others can arise, sick and suffering, helping to strengthen a culture of help, of gift, of hope and of life. Faced with threats against life, which unfortunately we have to witness almost daily, as in the case of abortion and euthanasia - to mention only the beginning and end of life -, society needs these concrete gestures of solidarity and of generous love, to make people understand that life is a sacred thing.

I encourage you to continue in your efforts to defend and promote life, through the wonderful means of organ donation. I like to remember the words of Jesus: "Give and it will be given to you: a good measure, pressed, overflowing and overflowing - the Lord does not spare the adjectives here - will be poured into your womb" (Lk 6:38). We will receive our reward from God according to the sincere and concrete love that we have shown towards our neighbor.
May the Lord sustain you in your good intentions. For my part, I accompany you with my humanity and my blessing. Thank you.
 FULL TEXT + Image Source: Blog Share from Vatican.va- Unofficial Translation

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Saturday, April 13, 2019 - #Eucharist in Lent


Saturday of the Fifth Week of Lent
Lectionary: 256

Reading 1EZ 37:21-28

Thus says the Lord GOD:
I will take the children of Israel from among the nations
to which they have come,
and gather them from all sides to bring them back to their land.
I will make them one nation upon the land,
in the mountains of Israel,
and there shall be one prince for them all.
Never again shall they be two nations,
and never again shall they be divided into two kingdoms.

No longer shall they defile themselves with their idols,
their abominations, and all their transgressions.
I will deliver them from all their sins of apostasy,
and cleanse them so that they may be my people
and I may be their God.
My servant David shall be prince over them,
and there shall be one shepherd for them all;
they shall live by my statutes and carefully observe my decrees.
They shall live on the land that I gave to my servant Jacob,
the land where their fathers lived;
they shall live on it forever,
they, and their children, and their children's children,
with my servant David their prince forever.
I will make with them a covenant of peace;
it shall be an everlasting covenant with them,
and I will multiply them, and put my sanctuary among them forever.
My dwelling shall be with them;
I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Thus the nations shall know that it is I, the LORD,
who make Israel holy,
when my sanctuary shall be set up among them forever.

Responsorial PsalmJEREMIAH 31:10, 11-12ABCD, 13

R. (see 10d)  The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.
Hear the word of the LORD, O nations,
proclaim it on distant isles, and say:
He who scattered Israel, now gathers them together,
he guards them as a shepherd his flock.
R. The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.
The LORD shall ransom Jacob,
he shall redeem him from the hand of his conqueror.
Shouting, they shall mount the heights of Zion,
they shall come streaming to the LORD's blessings:
The grain, the wine, and the oil,
the sheep and the oxen.
R. The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.
Then the virgins shall make merry and dance,
and young men and old as well.
I will turn their mourning into joy,
I will console and gladden them after their sorrows.
R. The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.

Verse Before The GospelEZ 18:31

Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, says the LORD,
and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit.

GospelJN 11:45-56

Many of the Jews who had come to Mary
and seen what Jesus had done began to believe in him.
But some of them went to the Pharisees
and told them what Jesus had done.
So the chief priests and the Pharisees
convened the Sanhedrin and said,
"What are we going to do?
This man is performing many signs.
If we leave him alone, all will believe in him,
and the Romans will come
and take away both our land and our nation."
But one of them, Caiaphas,
who was high priest that year, said to them,
"You know nothing,
nor do you consider that it is better for you
that one man should die instead of the people,
so that the whole nation may not perish."
He did not say this on his own,
but since he was high priest for that year,
he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation,
and not only for the nation,
but also to gather into one the dispersed children of God.
So from that day on they planned to kill him.

So Jesus no longer walked about in public among the Jews,
but he left for the region near the desert,
to a town called Ephraim,
and there he remained with his disciples.

Now the Passover of the Jews was near,
and many went up from the country to Jerusalem
before Passover to purify themselves.
They looked for Jesus and said to one another
as they were in the temple area, "What do you think?
That he will not come to the feast?"