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Saturday, January 11, 2020
Saint January 12 : St. Marguerite Bourgeoys a Foundress and Patron of Poverty, Orphans, People rejected by Religious orders
Feast: January 12 (Canada)
17 April 1620, Troyes, FranceDied:
12 January 1700, Montreal,
31 October 1982, by Pope
John Paul II
Against poverty, loss of parents, people rejected by religious orders
FOUNDRESS, SISTERS OF THE CONGREGATION OF NOTRE-DAME MARGUERITE BOURGEOYS was born in Troyes, in the province of Champagne (France), on Good Friday, April 17, 1620. She was baptized on the same day in the church of Saint-Jean, a church that was located near her home. Marguerite was the sixth child in a family of twelve. Her parents were Abraham Bourgeoys and Guillemette Gamier, and she was privileged to grow up in a milieu that was middle class and thoroughly Christian.
Marguerite was nineteen years of age when she lost her mother. In the following year, 1640, in the course of a procession held on October 7 in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary, she had an unforgettable experience. Her eyes rested on a statue of the Blessed Virgin, and at that moment she felt inspired to withdraw from the world and to consecrate herself to the service of God. She registered, at once, as a member of the extern Congregation of Troyes, an association of young girls devoted to the charitable work of teaching children in the poor districts of the town. While engaged in this apostolate she learned about the foundation of Ville Marie (Montreal) in Canada. The year was 1642, and at that time she sensed a first call to missionary life. This call was rendered concrete in 1652 when she met Monsieur de Maisonneuve, founder and governor of the settlement begun in New France, who was in search of someone who would volunteer her services for the gratuitous instruction of the French and Indian children. Our Lady confirmed the call addressed to her: "Go, I will not forsake you", she said. Thus assured, Marguerite left Troyes in February, 1653, in a spirit of complete detachment. She arrived in Montreal on the following 16th of November, and without delay she set to work to promote the best interests of the colony. She is rightly considered co-foundress of Montreal, with the nurse, Jeanne Mance, and the master designer, Monsieur de Maisonneuve.
In order to encourage the colonists in their faith, she arranged for the restoration of the Cross on Mount Royal after it has been destroyed by hostile Indians, and she undertook the construction of a chapel dedicated to Notre-Dame de Bon Secours. Convinced of the importance of the family in the building of this new country, and perceiving the significance of the role to be exercised by women, she devoted herself to the task of preparing those whose vocation it would be to preside in a home. In 1658, in a stable which had been given to her by the governor for her use, she opened the first school in Montreal. She also organized an extern Congregation, patterned after the one which she had known in Troyes but adapted to the actual needs. In this way, she could respond to the needs of the women and young girls on whom much depended as far as the instruction of children was concerned. In 1659, she began receiving girls who were recommended by "les cures" in France, or endowed by the King, to come to establish homes in Montreal, and she became a real mother to them. Thus were initiated a school system and a network of social services which gradually extended through the whole country, and which led people to refer to Marguerite as "Mother of the Colony".
On three occasions, Marguerite Bourgeoys made a trip to France to obtain help. As of
1658, the group of teachers who associated themselves with her in her life of prayer, of heroic poverty, and of untiring devotedness to the service of others, presented the image of a religious institute. The Congregation de Notre-Dame received its civil charter from Louis XIV in 1671, and canonical approbation by decree of the Bishop of Quebec in 1676. The Constitutions of the Community were approved in 1698. The foundation having been assured, Sister Bourgeoys could leave the work to others. She died in Montreal on January 12, 1700, acknowledged for her holiness of life. Her last generous act was to offer herself as a sacrifice of prayer for the return to health of a young Sister. Forty members of the Congregation de Notre-Dame were there to continue her work.
On November 12, 1950 Pope Pius XII beatified Marguerite Bourgeoys. Canonizing her on October 31, 1982, Pope John Paul II gave the Canadian Church its first woman saint.
(Abridged from Vatican News Services)
Pope Francis says "..you can always be the architects of good relationships, builders of peace." to Ethiopian College at Vatican - Full Text
ADDRESS OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS
TO THE COMMUNITY OF THE PONTIFICAL ETHIOPIAN COLLEGE IN VATICAN
Saturday 11 January 2020
Dear brothers and sisters!
I am happy to welcome you today and to thank together for the hundred years of the Ethiopian College. I greet the Bishops who have come from Ethiopia and Eritrea, including the two Metropolitans, Cardinal Berhaneyesus and Monsignor Tesfamariam; the student community with the Superiors, in particular the Rector Father and the Vice-Rector; the religious, who work so hard to take care of you, and the lay staff. I greet Cardinal Sandri and Archbishop Vasil 'and I thank the Congregation for the Eastern Churches who support the life of the College, also thanks to the benefactors, to whom I also express gratitude. I greet the Capuchin Friars with the Minister General; the representation of the Pontifical Oriental Institute; and the numerous Ethiopian and Eritrean priests and friars.
The Ethiopian presence within the Vatican walls, first of the church and the pilgrims' hospice, and for a hundred years of the College, brings us back to one word: welcome. Over the centuries, the children of peoples geographically distant from Rome, but so close to the faith of the Apostles in professing Jesus Christ the Savior, have found home and hospitality throughout the tomb of the Apostle Peter.
Very beautiful are the words of the great monk Tesfa Zion, Pietro the Ethiopian, who is buried in the church of S. Stefano degli Abissini, where today and tomorrow you will celebrate the liturgy: «I myself am Ethiopian, a pilgrim from place to place [...] . But nowhere, except in Rome, have I found the peace of mind and body; peace of mind because there is true faith; the quiet of the body, because there I found the Successor of Peter who favors us in our needs ». He enriched the Roman Curia with his wisdom and edited the New Testament print in the Ethiopian language.
You student priests, from Ethiopia and Eritrea, two churches united by the same tradition, bring the richness of the history of your lands among us today, with ancient traditions, the coexistence between men and women belonging to the Jewish religion and the Islamic one, as well as together with the numerous brothers of the Tewahedo Orthodox Church. I was able to meet here in Rome the Patriarch His Holiness Mathias of Ethiopia, to whom I send my fraternal greeting.
Meeting you, I think of many of your brothers and sisters from Ethiopia and Eritrea, whose life is marked by poverty, and until a few months ago by the fratricidal war, for whose conclusion we thank the Lord and those who have committed themselves in the two countries in first person. I always pray that we will treasure the years of pain experienced on both sides, and that we will no longer fall into divisions between ethnic groups and between countries with common roots. You priests, you can always be the architects of good relationships, builders of peace. May the faithful who will be entrusted to you to cultivate this gift of God, medicating the internal and external wounds that you will encounter and trying to help the paths of reconciliation, for the future of the children and young people of your lands.
Many of them, it is sad to remember, driven by hope have left their homeland at the cost of enormous efforts and not infrequently going through tragedies by land and sea. I thank you for the welcome that your faithful have been able to experience and for the commitment that some of you already live in following them pastorally in Europe and on other continents. Much can still be done, and better, both at home and abroad, taking advantage of the years of study and stay in Rome, in a humble and generous service, always on the basis of union with the Lord, to whom we have given our whole existence.
I encourage you to keep the precious ecclesial tradition, always united with the missionary impulse. I also hope that the Catholic Church in your nations will be guaranteed the freedom to serve the common good, both by allowing you students to complete your studies in Rome or elsewhere, and by protecting educational, health and welfare institutions, in the certainty that Pastors and faithful together with all the others, they wish to contribute to the good and prosperity of your nations.
As children of the Churches of Ethiopia and Eritrea, love the Holy Mother of God, Mary Most Holy, so much. In fact, you call yourself Resta Maryam, "fiefdom, property of Mary", and in the monthly liturgical recollection of the Kidana Mehrat, "Pact of Mercy", you know you can entrust every prayer, every supplication to his intercession. In that memory, I ask you to always have a prayer for me and for my intentions.
I thank you and impart my Apostolic Blessing: may it reach your families, your Eparchies, your peoples, all of you. Thank you!
Source: Image VaticanNews.va - Text - Vatican.va - Unofficial Translation
Primate of Ireland Archbishop Martin encourages New Rosary Prayer initiative for "...population of Ireland to pledge to pray the Rosary...every day.."
In his homily for World Day of Peace on Wednesday 1 January, Archbishop Eamon Martin, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, reflected on the hope that a new year brings, the World Day of Prayer for Peace, the political impasse in Northern Ireland and a new initiative on the Rosary.
Speaking to the congregation in Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in Armagh Archbishop Eamon said, “At the beginning of this new decade it is worth asking ourselves – does my faith in God make a real difference in my life? Does faith challenge me or have I settled for an ‘easy listening’ comfortable way of living which allows me simply to go on the way I am, relaxed in my choices and perhaps even in my prejudices, in my abuse of created things, my sin and my disobedience of God’s laws?”
He added, “If our only New Year’s resolution was to be more authentic as people of faith, and to become courageous witnesses to Christ in the world, then with the help of God’s grace and blessing, we can build together a more just and peaceful world for ourselves and others.”
1 in 10 Rosary
Archbishop Eamon also announced his intention to visit Fatima this year as part of a new prayer initiative on the Rosary. The @1in10Rosary which he will launch next month, aims to encourage at least ten percent of the population of Ireland to pledge to pray the Rosary, or a decade of the Rosary, every day for their personal conversion and the transformation of Ireland.
Archbishop Eamon said, “In July, I will lead a pilgrimage to the Marian Shrine of Fatima to dedicate this campaign to Mary and to pray that we can be, like her, courageous witnesses of faith. As pilgrims in Fatima we will remember in particular the witness of our Christian brothers and sisters who are persecuted in many parts of the world.”
The archbishop went on to highlight how the Rosary has for centuries sustained faith and life in Ireland, and helped countless women and men to discover God’s will in their lives. He said, “It can do so again, enabling us to be courageous witnesses, by pondering every day in our hearts, as Mary did, the deepest mysteries of our faith.”
Building relationships on the island of Ireland
Referring to Brexit, Archbishop Eamon said,“the early years of this decade will be crucial in sustaining peace and rebuilding relationships on the island of Ireland and between us and our neighbours in Britain and Europe.
“Archbishop Richard Clarke and I said recently that our country, north and south, truly needs the rekindling of wholesome relationships – socially and politically, nationally and internationally, and this will require men and women of integrity, generosity and courage to take the initiative in making these crucial relationships work.”
“Just as peace emerges from the depths of the human heart, so also do the answers to the greatest problems facing our country and world in this new decade.”
A Living Christian Faith
Archbishop Eamon went on to reflect on what it means to really live the Christian faith. He said a living Christian faith emboldens us to promote a culture of life, to defend the unborn, to reach out to the homeless, to welcome the stranger, to visit the sick.
He said, “It is only when the hearts and consciences of individuals are moved and troubled by the plight of the suffering and the marginalised, that change begins to happen at a societal and global level. The voice of God, speaking in our hearts, stirs faith and moves us to action. It opens our ears to the ‘cry of the poor’ and the ‘cry of the earth’, calling us to wise stewardship of God’s gifts of creation and personally to a more ‘responsible simplicity of life’. A living Christian Faith inspires us to turn towards God in holiness of life, to seek forgiveness for our sins, and to make personal resolutions for change, not only at the beginning of a New Year, but continually on a lifelong journey of conversion.”
The archbishop concluded his homily and message by inviting the faithful to “begin afresh this New Year your journey of faith – a journey nourished, like Mary’s, by prayer and contemplation on the Word of God and on the mysteries of the life of Christ.”
Catholic Civil Rights League Awards 84-year-old Jesuit Pro-Life Priest Fr. Van Hee who Protested Abortion for over 30 years
The Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) chose 84-year-old Jesuit priest Fr. Anthony Van Hee from Ottawa as winner of their Archbishop Adam Exner Award for Catholic Excellence in Public Life.
In addition to 51 years as a Catholic priest, Fr. Tony has engaged in a regular prayerful protest to oppose abortion and in support of life, on Parliament Hill, which he commenced in September of 1989. He has kept his faithful vigil for over 30 years.
Fr. Tony was arrested on October 24, 2018 for silently protesting within 50 metres of the Morgentaler abortion clinic in Ottawa. Fr. Van Hee never spoke with anyone. He did not distribute anything. He made no mention of abortion or abortion related services. Fr. Tony simply wore a sandwich board. On the front was the sentence, “The Primacy of Free Speech Cornerstone of Western Civilization”; on the back, “Without Free Speech the State is a Corpse.”
Fr. Tony was charged with violating section 3(1)(e)(iii) of the Safe Access to Abortion Services Act which states:
3 (1) While in an access zone established under section 6 for a clinic or facility, no person shall,
(e) for the purpose of dissuading a person from accessing abortion services,
(iii) intimidate or attempt to intimidate the person, or
The CCRL is involved in a constitutional challenge to the controversial bubble zone law, under which Fr. Tony is charged.
The Exner award was presented at the CCRL’s Annual Dinner on November 25 in Toronto at 6:30 pm at the Sala Caboto Ballroom at 40 Playfair Ave, west of Dufferin, south of Lawrence.
CCRL President Phil Horgan confirmed the League’s selection:
“We take this opportunity to recognize the persistent and prayerful witness of not only a Catholic priest, but an individual who has stood in silent support, no matter the weather or other impediments, to the cause of life.”
On receiving the Exner award, Fr. Tony said:
I have very little in common with Archbishop Adam Exner, but we were born 103 kms from each other. He was born in Killaly, Saskatchewan, in 1928, and I was born in Langenburg, Saskatchewan, in 1935. In the 2016 Census Killaly had a population of 77, Langenburg, a population of 1,165. However, I am honoured and humbled to receive the Archbishop Exner Award for Catholic Excellence in Public Life, and to be associated with the many much more worthy former recipients, such as, Doctors Catherine Ferrier, Robert Walley, Donald DeMarco, and Dr. and Mrs. Andrew and Joan Simone, Alex Schadenberg, Gwen Landolt, Fr. Alphonse de Valk, Michael O’Brien, Suzanne LaVallee, Jim Hughes, J. Fraser Field, and the late Frank Chauvin and Frederick W. Hill.
About the Archbishop Exner Award
The CCRL established the Archbishop Exner Award in 2004 to honour Archbishop Adam Exner, OMI, Archbishop Emeritus of Vancouver, upon his retirement and to recognize outstanding achievement in advocacy, education, life issues, media and culture, and philanthropy.
Previous recipients include:
Dr. Catherine Ferrier, Catholic physician, Physicians’ Alliance against Euthanasia (2018)
Dr. Robert Walley, founder of MaterCare International (2017)
Alex Schadenberg, anti-euthanasia/assisted suicide activist (2016)
Dr. Donald DeMarco, scholar, writer, seminary professor, and pro-life activist (2015)
Edited from the Canadian Catholic Civil Rights League - https://ccrl.ca/2019/10/exner2019/