Saturday, September 13, 2014

Saint September 14 : The Exaltation of the Holy Cross Feast


The Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Feast: September 14
Information:
Feast Day:
September 14

The feast of the Exaltation of the Craoss sprang into existence at Rome at the end of the seventh century. Allusion is made to it during the pontificate of Sergius I (687-701) but, as Dom Bäumer observes, the very terms of the text (Lib. Pontif., I, 374, 378) show that the feast already existed. It is, then, inexact, as has often been pointed out, to attribute the introduction of it to this pope. The Gallican churches, which, at the period here referred to, do not yet know of this feast of the 14th September, have another on the 3rd of May of the same signification. It seems to have been introduced there in the seventh century, for ancient Gallican documents, such as the Lectionary of Luxeuil, do not mention it; Gregory of Tours also seems to ignore it. According to Mgr. Duchesne, the date seems to have been borrowed from the legend of the Finding of the Holy Cross (Lib. Pontif., I, p. cviii). Later, when the Gallican and Roman Liturgies were combined, a distinct character was given to each feast, so as to avoid sacrificing either. The 3rd of May was called the feast of the Invention of the Cross, and it commemorated in a special manner Saint Helena's discovery of the sacred wood of the Cross; the 14th of September, the feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, commemorated above all the circumstances in which Heraclius recovered from the Persians the True Cross, which they had carried off. Nevertheless, it appears from the history of the two feasts, which we have just examined, that that of the 13th and 14th of September is the older, and that the commemoration of the Finding of the Cross was at first combined with it.

Pope Francis "Humanity needs to weep, and this is the time to weep." Full Text - Video - War Mass Memorial


(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis on Saturday morning celebrated Mass at the Italian Military Memorial of Redipuglia.  The visit to the area, which was the scene of fighting between Italy and the forces of the Central Powers during World War I, was to mark the centenary of the beginning of the war.  The Mass was said for the fallen and victims of all wars.
Here lie many victims.  Today, we remember them,” said Pope Francis, during his homily. “There are tears, there is sadness.  From this place we remember all the victims of every war.”
During his remarks, Pope Francis called war “madness” and  “irrational”, and  said its only plan was to bring destruction.
“Greed, intolerance, the lust for power…. These motives underlie the decision to go to war, and they are too often justified by an ideology; but first there is a distorted passion or impulse,” said the Pope.
Below is the full text of the prepared homily of Pope Francis
Visit of His Holiness Pope Francis to the Military Cemetery of Redipuglia
(13 September 2014) After experiencing the beauty of travelling throughout this region, where men and women work and raise their families, where children play and the elderly dream… I now find myself here, in this place, able to say only one thing: War is madness.
Whereas God carries forward the work of creation, and we men and women are called to participate in his work, war destroys.  It also ruins the most beautiful work of his hands: human beings.  War ruins everything, even the bonds between brothers.  War is irrational; its only plan is to bring destruction: it seeks to grow by destroying.
Greed, intolerance, the lust for power…. These motives underlie the decision to go to war, and they are too often justified by an ideology; but first there is a distorted passion or impulse.  Ideology is presented as a justification and when there is no ideology, there is the response of Cain: “What does it matter to me?  Am I my brother’s keeper?” (cf. Gen 4:9).  War does not look directly at anyone, be they elderly, children, mothers, fathers…. “What does it matter to me?”
Above the entrance to this cemetery, there hangs in the air those ironic words of war, “What does it matter to me?”  Each one of the dead buried here had their own plans, their own dreams… but their lives were cut short.  Humanity said, “What does it matter to me?”
Even today, after the second failure of another world war, perhaps one can speak of a third war, one fought piecemeal, with crimes, massacres, destruction…
In all honesty, the front page of newspapers ought to carry the headline, “What does it matter to me?”  Cain would say, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
This attitude is the exact opposite of what Jesus asks of us in the Gospel.  We have heard: he is in the least of his brothers; he, the King, the Judge of the world, he is the one who hungers, who thirsts, he is the stranger, the one who is sick, the prisoner… The one who cares for his brother or sister enters into the joy of the Lord; the one who does not do so, however, who by his omissions says, “What does it matter to me?”, remains excluded.
Here lie many victims.  Today, we remember them.  There are tears, there is sadness.  From this place we remember all the victims of every war. 
Today, too, the victims are many…  How is this possible?  It is so because in today’s world, behind the scenes, there are interests, geopolitical strategies, lust for money and power, and there is the manufacture and sale of arms, which seem to be so important!
And these plotters of terrorism, these schemers of conflicts, just like arms dealers, have engraved in their hearts, “What does it matter to me?”
It is the task of the wise to recognize errors, to feel pain, to repent, to beg for pardon and to cry.        With this “What does it matter to me?” in their hearts, the merchants of war perhaps have made a great deal of money, but their corrupted hearts have lost the capacity to cry.  That “What does it matter to me?” prevents the tears.  Cain did not cry.  The shadow of Cain hangs over us today in this cemetery.  It is seen here.  It is seen from 1914 right up to our own time.  It is seen even in the present.
With the heart of a son, a brother, a father, I ask each of you, indeed for all of us, to have a conversion of heart: to move on from “What does it matter to me?”, to tears: for each one of the fallen of this “senseless massacre”, for all the victims of the mindless wars, in every age.  Humanity needs to weep, and this is the time to weep. Shared from Radio Vaticana

Pope Francis Prays at War Memorial marking 100th anniversary of WWI

Pope Francis prays at the Austro-Hungarian Cemetery of Fogliano di Redipuglia
13/09/
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis prayed silently at the Austro-Hungarian Cemetery of Fogliano di Redipuglia on Saturday morning, during the first stop of his morning trip to north-eastern Italy to mark the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the First World War. It is near the Italian War Memorial of  'Redipuglia', also known at the Memorial of the 100,000, the site of the second event of the Pope's trip, a Mass for those who died in the war.  Pope Francis' paternal grandfather, Giovanni Carlo Bergoglio fought on this front during World War I, a decade before immigrating to Argentina.

Today's Mass Readings : Saturday September 13, 2014


Memorial of Saint John Chrysostom, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Lectionary: 442


Reading 11 COR 10:14-22

My beloved ones, avoid idolatry.
I am speaking as to sensible people;
judge for yourselves what I am saying.
The cup of blessing that we bless,
is it not a participation in the Blood of Christ?
The bread that we break,
is it not a participation in the Body of Christ?
Because the loaf of bread is one,
we, though many, are one Body,
for we all partake of the one loaf.

Look at Israel according to the flesh;
are not those who eat the sacrifices participants in the altar?
So what am I saying?
That meat sacrificed to idols is anything?
Or that an idol is anything?
No, I mean that what they sacrifice,
they sacrifice to demons, not to God,
and I do not want you to become participants with demons.
You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and also the cup of demons.
You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and of the table of demons.
Or are we provoking the Lord to jealous anger?
Are we stronger than him?

Responsorial Psalm PS 116:12-13, 17-18

R. (17) To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.
How shall I make a return to the LORD
for all the good he has done for me?
The cup of salvation I will take up,
and I will call upon the name of the LORD.
R. To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.
To you will I offer sacrifice of thanksgiving,
and I will call upon the name of the LORD.
My vows to the LORD I will pay
in the presence of all his people.
R. To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.

Gospel LK 6:43-49

Jesus said to his disciples:
“A good tree does not bear rotten fruit,
nor does a rotten tree bear good fruit.
For every tree is known by its own fruit.
For people do not pick figs from thornbushes,
nor do they gather grapes from brambles.
A good person out of the store of goodness in his heart produces good,
but an evil person out of a store of evil produces evil;
for from the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks.

“Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ but not do what I command?
I will show you what someone is like who comes to me,
listens to my words, and acts on them.
That one is like a man building a house,
who dug deeply and laid the foundation on rock;
when the flood came, the river burst against that house
but could not shake it because it had been well built.
But the one who listens and does not act
is like a person who built a house on the ground
without a foundation.
When the river burst against it,
it collapsed at once and was completely destroyed.”