Monday, June 22, 2020

Holy Mass Online - Readings and Video : Tuesday, June 23, 2020 - Your Virtual Church


Tuesday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 372
Reading 12 KGS 19:9B-11, 14-21, 31-35A, 36
Sennacherib, king of Assyria, sent envoys to Hezekiah
with this message:
“Thus shall you say to Hezekiah, king of Judah:
‘Do not let your God on whom you rely deceive you
by saying that Jerusalem will not be handed over
to the king of Assyria.
You have heard what the kings of Assyria have done
to all other countries: they doomed them!
Will you, then, be saved?’”

Hezekiah took the letter from the hand of the messengers and read it;
then he went up to the temple of the LORD,
and spreading it out before him,
he prayed in the LORD’s presence:
“O LORD, God of Israel, enthroned upon the cherubim!
You alone are God over all the kingdoms of the earth.
You have made the heavens and the earth.
Incline your ear, O LORD, and listen!
Open your eyes, O LORD, and see!
Hear the words of Sennacherib which he sent to taunt the living God.
Truly, O LORD, the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations
and their lands, and cast their gods into the fire;
they destroyed them because they were not gods,
but the work of human hands, wood and stone.
Therefore, O LORD, our God, save us from the power of this man,
that all the kingdoms of the earth may know
that you alone, O LORD, are God.”

Then Isaiah, son of Amoz, sent this message to Hezekiah:
“Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel,
in answer to your prayer for help against Sennacherib, king of Assyria:
I have listened!
This is the word the LORD has spoken concerning him:

“‘She despises you, laughs you to scorn,
the virgin daughter Zion!
Behind you she wags her head,
daughter Jerusalem.

“‘For out of Jerusalem shall come a remnant,
and from Mount Zion, survivors.
The zeal of the LORD of hosts shall do this.’

“Therefore, thus says the LORD concerning the king of Assyria:
‘He shall not reach this city, nor shoot an arrow at it,
nor come before it with a shield,
nor cast up siege-works against it.
He shall return by the same way he came,
without entering the city, says the LORD.
I will shield and save this city for my own sake,
and for the sake of my servant David.’”

That night the angel of the LORD went forth and struck down
one hundred and eighty-five thousand men in the Assyrian camp.
So Sennacherib, the king of Assyria, broke camp,
and went back home to Nineveh.

Responsorial Psalm48:2-3AB, 3CD-4, 10-11
R. (see 9d) God upholds his city for ever.
Great is the LORD and wholly to be praised
in the city of our God.
His holy mountain, fairest of heights,
is the joy of all the earth.
R. God upholds his city for ever.
Mount Zion, “the recesses of the North,”
is the city of the great King.
God is with her castles;
renowned is he as a stronghold.
R. God upholds his city for ever.
O God, we ponder your mercy
within your temple.
As your name, O God, so also your praise
reaches to the ends of the earth.
Of justice your right hand is full.
R. God upholds his city for ever.

AlleluiaJN 8:12
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the light of the world, says the Lord;
whoever follows me will have the light of life.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMT 7:6, 12-14
Jesus said to his disciples:
“Do not give what is holy to dogs, or throw your pearls before swine,
lest they trample them underfoot, and turn and tear you to pieces.

“Do to others whatever you would have them do to you.
This is the Law and the Prophets.

“Enter through the narrow gate;
for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction,
and those who enter through it are many.
How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life.
And those who find it are few.”


 Prayer to make Spiritual Communion:
People who cannot communicate now make spiritual communion.At your feet, O my Jesus I bow down and offer you the repentance of my contrite heart, which abysses itself into its nothingness and Your holy presence. I adore you in the Sacrament of Your love, the ineffable Eucharist. I wish to receive you in the poor home that my heart offers you. In anticipation of the happiness of sacramental communion, I want to possess you in spirit. Come to me, oh my Jesus, that I may come to you. May Your love inflame my whole being, for life and death. I believe in you, I hope in you, I love you. So be it. Amen.

Novena to Saint Thomas More - Prayers to the Patron Saint of Politicians, Lawyers and Religious Freedom with Litany

Novena Prayers to St. Thomas More, Martyr & Patron of Saint of Religious Freedom, Statesmen, Politicians & Lawyers ++++++
Please join in nine days of prayer
All are also encouraged to pray the daily Rosary and do some form of penance during this novena. ++++++
First Day
Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of prudence. You never thrust yourself rashly into any serious undertaking; instead, you tested the strength of your powers and waited on God's will in prayer and penance, then boldly carried it out without hesitation. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the virtues of patience, prudence, wisdom and courage. Our Father...
Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of humility. You never allowed pride to lead you to take on enterprises beyond your abilities; even in the midst of earthly wealth and honor, you never forgot your total dependence on your Heavenly Father. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace of an increase in humility, and the wisdom not to overestimate my own powers.
Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be...
Repeat: Glorious St. Thomas More, I beg you… (From First Day)
Now is said the Litany of St. Thomas More.
Sixth Day
Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model husband and father. You were loving and faithful to both of your wives, and a diligent provider and example of virtue for your children. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace of a happy home, peace in my family, and the strength to persevere in chastity according to my state of life. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be...
Repeat: Glorious St. Thomas More, I beg you… (From First Day)
Now is said the Litany of St. Thomas More.
Seventh Day
Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of Christian fortitude. You suffered bereavement, disgrace, poverty, imprisonment and a violent death; yet you bore all with the strength and good cheer for which you were known throughout your life. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace to bear all the crosses that God sends me with patience and joy.
Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Repeat: Glorious St. Thomas More, I beg you… (From First Day)
Now is said the Litany of St. Thomas More.
Eighth Day
Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a loyal child of God and a steadfast son of the Church, never taking your eyes off the crown for which you strove. Even in the face of death, you trusted in God to give you the victory, and He rewarded you with the palm of martyrdom. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me and mine the grace of final perseverance and protection from sudden and unprovided death, so that we may one day enjoy the Beatific Vision in your glorious company.
Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Repeat: Glorious St. Thomas More, I beg you… (From First Day)
Now is said the Litany of St. Thomas More.
Ninth Day
Dear St. Thomas More, you spent your whole earthly life preparing for the life to come. Everything you endured prepared you not only for the glory God wished to bestow upon you in heaven, but for your work as the patron of lawyers, judges and statesmen, and steadfast friend to all who call upon you. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for us aid in all our necessities, both corporal and spiritual, an follow in your footsteps, until at last we are safely home with you in the mansions our Father has prepared for us in heaven. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be...
Repeat: Glorious St. Thomas More, I beg you… (From First Day)
Litany of St. Thomas More
(To be prayed each day after the Novena prayers that follow)
V. Lord, have mercy R. Lord, have mercy.
V. Christ, have mercy R. Christ have mercy
V. Lord, have mercy R. Lord, have mercy.
V. Christ hear us R. Christ, graciously hear us
V. St. Thomas More, Saint and Martyr, R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Patron of Statesmen, Politicians and Lawyers. R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Patron of Justices, Judges and Magistrates. R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Model of Integrity and Virtue in Public and Private Life. R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Servant of the Word of God and the Body and Blood of Christ. R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Model of Holiness in the Sacrament of Marriage. R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Teacher of his Children in the Catholic Faith. R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Defender of the Weak and the Poor. R. Pray for us.
V. St. Thomas More, Promoter of Human Life and Dignity. R. Pray for us.
V. Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world.
R. Spare us, O Lord.
V. Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world.
R. Graciously hear us, O Lord.
V. Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world.
R. Have mercy on us.
Let us pray: O Glorious St. Thomas More, Patron of Statesmen, Politicians, Judges and Lawyers, your life of prayer and penance and your zeal for justice, integrity and firm principle in public and family life led you to the path of martyrdom and sainthood. Intercede for our Statesmen, Politicians, Judges and Lawyers, that they may be courageous and effective in their defense and promotion of the sanctity of human life - the foundation of all other human rights. We ask this through Christ our Lord. R. Amen.

Saint June 22 : St. John Fisher a Martyr of England and Bishop who Died in 1535


St. John Fisher
MARTYR, CARDINAL OF ENGLAND
Feast: June 22



Feast Day:
June 22
Born:
1469, Beverley, Yorkshire, England
Died:
22 June 1535, Tower Hill, London, England
Canonized:
19 May 1935, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Cardinal, Bishop of Rochester, and martyr; born at Beverley, Yorkshire, England, 1459 (?1469); died 22 June, 1535. John was the eldest son of Robert Fisher, merchant of Beverley, and Agnes his wife. His early education was probably received in the school attached to the collegiate church in his native town, whence in 1484 he removed to Michaelhouse, Cambridge. He took the degree of B.A. in 1487, proceeded M.A. in 1491, in which year he was elected a fellow of his college, and was made Vicar of Northallerton, Yorkshire. In 1494 he resigned his benefice to become proctor of his university, and three years later was appointed Master of Michaelhouse, about which date he became chaplain and confessor to Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond and Derby, mother of King Henry VII. In 1501 he received the degree of D.D., and was elected Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge University. Under Fisher's guidance, the Lady Margaret founded St. John's and Christ's Colleges at Cambridge, and also the two "Lady Margaret" professorships of divinity at Oxford and Cambridge respectively, Fisher himself being the first occupant of the Cambridge chair.

By Bull dated 14 October, 1504, Fisher was advanced to the Bishopric of Rochester, and in the same year was elected Chancellor of Cambridge University, to which post he was re-elected annually for ten years and then appointed for life. At this date also he is said to have acted as tutor to Prince Henry, afterwards Henry VIII. As a preacher his reputation was so great that in 1509, when King Henry VII and the Lady Margaret died, Fisher was appointed to preach the funeral oration on both occasions; these sermons are still extant. In 1542 Fisher was nominated as one of the English representatives at the Fifth Council of Lateran, then sitting, but his journey to Rome was postponed, and finally abandoned. Besides his share in the Lady Margaret's foundations, Fisher gave further proof of his genuine zeal for learning by inducing Erasmus to visit Cambridge. The latter indeed (Epist., 6:2) attributes it to Fisher's protection that the study of Greek was allowed to proceed at Cambridge without the active molestation that it encountered at Oxford. He has also been named, though without any real proof, as the true author of the royal treatise against Luther entitled "Assertio septem sacramentorum", published in 1521, which won the title < Fidei Defensor> for Henry VIII. Before this date Fisher had denounced various abuses in the Church, urging the need of disciplinary reforms, and in this year he preached at St. Paul's Cross on the occasion when Luther's books were publicly burned.

When the question of Henry's divorce from Queen Catherine arose, Fisher became the Queen's chief supporter and most trusted counsellor. In this capacity he appeared on the Queen's behalf in the legates' court, where he startled his hearers by the directness of his language and most of all by declaring that, like St. John the Baptist, he was ready to die on behalf of the indissolubility of marriage. This statement was reported to Henry VIII, who was so enraged by it that he himself composed a long Latin address to the legates in answer to the bishop's speech. Fisher's copy of this still exists, with his manuscript annotations in the margin which show how little he feared the royal anger. The removal of the cause to Rome brought Fisher's personal share therein to an end, but the king never forgave him for what he had done. In November, 1529, the "Long Parliament" of Henry's reign began its series of encroachments on the Church. Fisher, as a member of the upper house, at once warned Parliament that such acts could only end in the utter destruction of the Church in England. On this the Commons, through their speaker, complained to the king that the bishop had disparaged Parliament. Dr. Gairdner (Lollardy and the Reformation, I, 442)  says of this incident "it can hardly be a matter of doubt that this strange remonstrance was prompted by the king himself, and partly for personal uses of his own".

The opportunity was not lost. Henry summoned Fisher before him, demanding an explanation. This being given, Henry declared himself satisfied, leaving it to the Commons to declare that the explanation was inadequate, so that he appeared as a magnanimous sovereign, instead of Fisher's enemy. A year later (1530) the continued encroachments on the Church moved the Bishops of Rochester, Bath, and Ely to appeal to the Apostolic see. This gave the king his opportunity. An edict forbidding such appeals was immediately issued, and the three bishops were arrested. Their imprisonment, however, can have lasted a few months only, for in February, 1531, Convocation met, and Fisher was present. This was the occasion when the clergy were forced, at a cost of 1000,000 pounds, to purchase the king's pardon for having recognized Cardinal Wolsey's authority as legate of the pope; and at the same time to acknowledge Henry as Supreme Head of the Church in England, to which phrase, however, the addition "so far as God's law permits" was made, through Fisher's efforts.

A few days later, several of the bishop's servants were taken ill after eating some porridge served to the household, and two actually died. Popular opinion at the time regarded this as an attempt on the bishop's life, although he himself chanced not to have taken any of the poisoned food. To disarm suspicion, the king not only expressed strong indignation at the crime, but caused a special Act of Parliament to be passed, whereby poisoning was to be accounted high treason, and the person guilty of it boiled to death. This sentence was actually carried out on the culprit, but it did not prevent what seems to have been a second attempt on Fisher's life soon afterwards.

Matters now moved rapidly. In May, 1532, Sir Thomas More resigned the chancellorship, and in June, Fisher preached publicly against the divorce. In August, Warham, Archbishop of Canterbury, died, and Cranmer was at once nominated to the pope as his successor. In January, 1533, Henry secretly went through the form of marriage with Anne Boleyn; Cranmer's consecration took place in March of the same year, and, a week later, Fisher was arrested. It seems fairly clear that the purpose of this arrest was to prevent his opposing the sentence of divorce which Cranmer pronounced in May, or the coronation of Anne Boleyn which followed on 1 June; for Fisher was set at liberty again within a fortnight of the latter event, no charge being made against him. In the autumn of this year (1533), various arrests were made in connection with the so-called revelations of the Holy Maid of Kent (see BARTON, ELIZABETH), but as Fisher was taken seriously ill in December, proceedings against him were postponed for a time. In March, 1534, however, a special bill of attainder against the Bishop of Rochester and others for complicity in the matter of the Nun of Kent was introduced and passed. By this Fisher was condemned to forfeiture of all his personal estate and to be imprisoned during the king's pleasure. Subsequently a pardon was granted him on payment of a fine of 300 pounds.

In the same session of Parliament was passed the Act of Succession, by which all who should be called upon to do so were compelled to take an oath of succession, acknowledging the issue of Henry and Anne as legitimate heirs to the throne, under pain of being guilty of misprision of treason. Fisher refused the oath and was sent to the Tower of London, 26 April, 1534. Several efforts were made to induce him to submit, but without effect, and in November he was a second time attained of misprision of treason, his goods being forfeited as from 1 March preceding, and the See of Rochester being declared vacant as from 2 June following. A long letter exists, written from the Tower by the bishop to Thomas Cromwell, which records the severity of his confinement and the sufferings he endured.

In may, 1535, the new pope, Paul III, created Fisher Cardinal Priest of St. Vitalis, his motive being apparently to induce Henry by this mark of esteem to treat the bishop less severely. The effect was precisely the reverse. Henry forbade the cardinal's hat to be brought into England, declaring that he would send the head to Rome instead. In June a special commission for Fisher's trial was issued, and on 17 June he was arraigned in Westminster Hall on a charge of treason, in that he denied the king to be supreme head of the Church. Since he had been deprived of his bishopric by the Act of Attainder, he was treated as a commoner, and tried by jury. He was declared guilty, and condemned to be hanged, drawn, and quartered at Tyburn, but the mode of execution was changed, and instead he was beheaded on Tower Hill. The martyr's last moments were thoroughly in keeping with his previous life.

He met death with a calm dignified courage which profoundly impressed all present. His headless body was stripped and left on the scaffold till evening, when it was thrown naked into a grave in the churchyard of Allhallows, Barking. Thence it was removed a fortnight later and laid beside that of Sir Thomas More in the church of St. Peter ad Vincula by the Tower. His head was stuck upon a pole on London Bridge, but its ruddy and lifelike appearance excited so much attention that, after a fortnight, it was thrown into the Thames, its place being taken by that of Sir Thomas More, whose martyrdom occurred on 6 July next following.

Several portraits of Fisher exist, the best being by Holbein in the royal collection; and a few secondary relics are extant. In the Decree of 29 December, 1886, when fifty-four of the English martyrs were beatified by Leo XIII, the best place of all is given to John Fisher. In 1935, Pope Pius XI canonized him. A list of Fisher's writings will be found in Gillow, "Bibliographical Dictionary of the English Catholics" (London, s.d.), II, 262-270. There are twenty-six works in all, printed and manuscript, mostly ascetical or controversial treatises, several of which have been reprinted many times. The original editions are very rare and valuable. The principal are: "Treatise concernynge...the seven penytencyall Psalms" (London, 1508); "Sermon...agayn ye pernicyous doctrin of Martin Luther" (London, 1521); "Defensio Henrici VIII" (Cologne, 1525); "De Veritate Corporis et Sanguinis Christi in Eucharistia, adversus Johannem Oecolampadium" (Cologne, 1527); "De Causa Matrimonii...Henrici VIII cum Catharina Aragonensi" (Alcal & aacute; de Henares, 1530); "The Wayes to Perfect Religion" (London, 1535); "A Spirituall Consolation written...to his sister Elizabeth" (London, 1735

SOURCE: The Catholic Encyclopedia

Saint June 22 : St. Paulinus of Nola a Bishop

St. Paulinus of Nola
BISHOP AND WRITER
Feast: June 22


     Information:
Feast Day:June 22
Born:354 AD, Bordeaux, France
Died:June 22, 431, Nola, near Naples, Campagna, Italy
Born at Bordeaux about 354; died 22 June, 431. He sprang from a distinguished family of Aquitania and his education was entrusted to the poet Ausonius. He became governor of the Province of Campania, but he soon realized that he could not find in public life the happiness he sought. From 380 to 390 he lived almost entirely in his native land. He married a Spanish lady, a Christian named Therasia. To her, to Bishop Delphinus of Bordeaux and his successor the Presbyter Amandus, and to St. Martin of Tours, who had cured him of some disease of the eye, he owed his conversion. He and his brother were baptized at the same time by Delphinus. When Paulinus lost his only child eight days after birth, and when he was threatened with the charge of having murdered his brother, he and his wife decided to withdraw from the world, and to enter the monastic life. They went to Spain about 390.

At Christmas, 394, or 395, the inhabitants of Barcelona obliged him to be  ordained, which was not canonical as he had not previously received the other orders. Having had a special devotion to St. Felix, who was buried at Nola in Campania, he laid out a fine avenue leading to the church containing Felix's tomb, and beside it he erected a hospital. He decided to settle down there with Therasia; and he distributed the largest part of his possessions among the poor. In 395 he removed to Nola, where he led a rigorous, ascetic, and monastic life, at the same time contributing generously to the Church, the aqueduct at Nola, and the construction of basilicas in Nola, Fondi, etc. The basilica at Nola counted five naves and had on each side four additions or chapels (cubicula), and an apsis arranged in a clover shape. This was connected with the old mortuary chapel of St. Felix by a gallery. The side was richly decorated with marble, silver lamps and lustres, paintings, statuary, and inscriptions. In the apsis was a mosaic which represented the Blessed Trinity, and of which in 1512 some remnants were still found.

About 409 Paulinus was chosen Bishop of Nola. For twenty years he discharged his duties in a most praiseworthy manner. His letters contain numerous biblical quotations and allusions; everything he performed in the Spirit of the Bible and expressed in Biblical language. Gennadius mentions the writings of Paulinus in his continuation of St. Jerome's "De Viris Illustribus" (xlix). The panegyric on the Emperor Theodosius is unfortunately lost, as are also the Opus sacramentorum et hymnorum", the "Epistolae ad Sororem", the "Liber de Paenitentia", the "Liber de Laude Generali Omnium Martyrum", and a poetical treatment of the "De Regibus" of Suetonius which Ausonius mentions. Forty-nine letters to friends have been preserved, as those to Sulpicius Severus, St. Augustine, Delphinus, Bishop Victricius of Rouen, Desiderius, Amandus, Pammachius, etc. Thirty-three poems are also extant. After 395 he composed annually a hymn for the feast of St. Felix, in which he principally glorified the life, works, and miracles of his holy patron. Then going further back he brought in various religious and poetic motives. The epic parts are very vivid, the lyrics full of real, unaffected enthusiasm and an ardent appreciation of nature. Thirteen of these poems and fragments of the fourteenth have preserved.

Conspicuous among his other works are the poetic epistles to Ausonius, the nuptial hymn to Julianus, which extols the dignity and sanctity of Christian marriage, and the poem of comfort to the parents of Celsus on the death of their child. Although Paulinus has great versatility and nicety, still he is not entirely free from the mannerisms and ornate culture of his period. All his writings breathe a charming, ideal personality, freed from all terrestrial attachments, ever striving upward. According to Augustine, he also had an exaggerated idea concerning the veneration of saints and relics. His letter xxxii, written to Sulpicius Severus, has received special attention because in it he describes the basilica of Nola, which he built, and gives copious accounts of the existence, construction, and purpose of Christian monuments. From Paulinus too we have information concerning St. Peter's in Rome. During his lifetime Paulinus was looked upon as saint. His body was first interred in the cathedral of Nola; later, in Benevento; then it was conveyed by Otto III to S. Bartolomeo all'Isola, in Rome, and finally in compliance with the regulation of Pius X of 18 Sept., 1908 (Acta Apostolicae Sedis, I, 245 sq.) was restored to the cathedral of Nola. His feast, 22 June, was raised to the rank of a double.

(Taken from Catholic Encyclopedia)

A Happy Return of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI to the Vatican after visiting his Sick Brother in Germany - Video


Vatican News reports that Pope emeritus Benedict XVI returned to the Vatican. He returned to the Vatican on Monday after visiting his ill brother in Germany.  Pope emeritus Benedict XVI returned following a five-day trip to Germany where he visited his 96-year-old brother, Georg. The Pope emeritus arrived in Munich last Thursday. Benedict XVI visits his sick brother in Germany As well as visiting his older brother, Benedict XVI took advantage of his last day in Munich to visit the Ziegetsdorf cemetery where his parents and older sister are buried. He prayed briefly at their tombs, before blessing their graves with holy water. He also paid a visit to his old home in Pentling, on the outskirts of Regensburg, where he worked as professor of Dogmatics at the city’s university before his appointment as Archbishop of Munich and Freising in 1977. The house is now the headquarters of the Benedict XVI Institute, which preserves his theological heritage. Benedict XVI also met with the nuncio to Germany, Archbishop Nikola Eterović, who in the years of his pontificate had served as Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops. Pope emeritus Benedict XVI last visited Germany during an official papal visit in 2006.
Source: Edited from Vatican News - Image Source Facebook

US Bishops Launch Religious Freedom Week with Special Prayers and Resources


U.S. Bishops’ Religious Liberty Chairman Announces Religious Freedom Week from June 22-29, 2020 
June 22, 2020
WASHINGTON— Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski of Miami, the acting chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee for Religious Liberty has encouraged Catholics to pray and uphold religious liberty at home and abroad during Religious Freedom Week 2020. Commencing on June 22, the Feast of Sts. Thomas More and John Fisher, Religious Freedom Week runs through June 29, the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul. The theme chosen for this year is “For the Good of All.”
Archbishop Wenski stated:
“Religious freedom is under stress throughout the world. Even in our Western liberal democracies, discrimination against religion in general and Catholic Christianity, in particular, is growing — albeit in perhaps more sophisticated and less violent ways.
“Political analysts and human rights advocates do include religion on their agenda. But most emphasize ‘tolerance’ as if religion were only a source of conflict. Or, they speak about religion in terms of ‘individual choices,’ as if religion were merely the concern of an individual’s conviction and were devoid of any social consequences.
“Yet, just as freedom of speech depends not only on one’s right to say what’s on one’s mind but also on the existence of institutions like newspapers, universities, libraries, political parties and other associations that make up what we call ‘civil society,’ so too freedom of religion ‘for the good of all’ must also encompass protecting those institutions that nourish the individual’s free exercise of religion.
“The right to religious freedom has its foundation in the very dignity of the human person. Religious freedom is the human right that guarantees all other rights — peace and creative living together will only be possible if freedom of religion is fully respected.”
Resources for Religious Freedom Week and other religious liberty resources may be found at www.usccb.org/ReligiousFreedomWeek and www.usccb.org/freedom. Social media posts will use the hashtag #ReligiousFreedomWeek.
FULL TEXT Source: USCCB
Here is the promotional video from last year:

Pope Francis adds 3 New Invocations to Litany to Mary - "Mother of Mercy" - "Mother of Hope and "Solace of Migrants" - FULL TEXT


Vatican News reports that Pope Francis has added “Mater misericordiae”, the Latin for “Mother of mercy”; "Mater spei", or “Mother of hope”; and “Solacium migrantium", or “Solace of migrants” as new invocations to the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Litany of Loreto, a traditional prayer to Mary the mother of Jesus.

The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, on Saturday, June 20 published a letter containing the new invocations (see below).  Saturday was the feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, June 20.

The letter was sent to the presidents of bishops’ conferences worldwide, Cardinal Robert Sarah, the Prefect of the Congregation, and its Secretary, Archbishop Arthur Roche, noted that through the course of centuries, Christians have been using innumerable invocations and titles to call upon the Virgin Mary, “as the privileged and sure way to an encounter with Christ”.

In an interview, Archbishop Roche explained that these invocations “respond to the realities of the time that we are living”. 
The Litany of Loreto takes its name from the Marian shrine of Loreto in Italy, where it is believed to have been used as far back as 1531.  It was officially approved in 1587 by Pope Sixtus V, who suppressed all other Marian litanies used publicly.  The Litany of Loreto is the only approved Marian litany. 
Through the centuries at least 7 new invocations to Mary were added.  Saint Pope John Paul II added “Mother of the Church” in 1980, and “Queen of families” in 1995.  Pope Francis has now added three more. (Edited from VaticanNews)

FULL TEXT Decree for the Addition of the 3 Invocations

Letter of the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments to the Presidents of the Conferences of Bishops on the invocations “Mater misericordiæ”, “Mater spei”, and “Solacium migrantium”to be inserted into the Litany of Loreto, 20.06.2020

The following is the letter sent by His Eminence Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, to the presidents of the Conferences of Bishops on the invocations “Mater misericordiæ”, “Mater spei”, and “Solacium migrantium”to be inserted into the Litany of Loreto:



LETTER TO THE PRESIDENTS OF CONFERENCES OF BISHOPS

ON THE INVOCATIONS “MATER MISERICORDIÆ”, “MATER SPEI”,

AND “SOLACIUM MIGRANTIUM”

TO BE INSERTED INTO THE LITANY OF LORETO

Vatican City, 20 June 2020,

Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Your Eminence,

Your Excellency,

The Church which walks along the pathways of history as a pilgrim towards the heavenly Jerusalem and enjoys inseparable communion with Christ her Spouse and Saviour, entrusts herself to her who believed in the word of the Lord.

We know from the Gospel that the disciples of Jesus had in fact learned from the very beginning to praise her as “blessed amongst women” and to count on her maternal intercession.

The titles and invocations which Christian piety has reserved for the Virgin Mary over the course of the centuries, as the privileged and sure way to an encounter with Christ, are innumerable. Even in this present moment which is marked by feelings of uncertainty and trepidation, devout recourse to her, which is full of affection and trust, is deeply felt by the People of God.

Discerning this sentiment and welcoming the desires expressed, the Supreme Pontiff, Pope Francis, wishes to provide that in the formulary of the litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, called “The Litany of Loreto”, the invocations “Mater misericordiæ”, “Mater spei” and “Solacium migrantium” should be inserted.

The first invocation shall be placed after “Mater Ecclesiæ”, the second after “Mater divinæ gratiæ”, while the third shall be placed after “Refugium peccatorum”.

With every good wish and kind regard, we wish to entrust this notification to you for your information and application.

Sincerely in the Lord,

Robert Card. Sarah
Prefect

+Arthur Roche
Archbishop Secretary