Tuesday, February 14, 2017

#PopeFrancis “The Word of God should be proclaimed with prayer, also." #Homily

(Vatican Radio) Courage prayer, and humility: these are the traits that distinguish the great “heralds” who have helped the Church to grow in the world, who have contributed to its missionary character. Pope Francis was speaking at the morning Mass at the Casa Santa Marta, taking his inspiration from the Liturgy and from the example of Sts Cyril and Methodius, the patrons of Europe, who are honoured today.
Cyril and Methodius have made Europe stronger
There is need of “sowers of the Word,” of “missionaries, of true heralds to form the people of God, like Cyril and Methodius, “good heralds,” intrepid brothers and witnesses of God, patrons of Europe who have made Europe stronger. Pope Francis began his homily with these reflections, and then looked at three personality traits of an “envoy” who proclaims the Word of God. He spoke of the day’s first Reading, with the figures of Paul and Barnabas; and of the Gospel from St Luke, with the seventy-two disciples sent out two-by-two by the Lord.
The Word of God is not a suggestion; courage is necessary in order for it to sink in
The first trait of the “envoy” highlighted by Pope Francis is “frankness,” which includes “strength and courage.”
“The Word of God cannot be given as a proposal – ‘well, if you like it…’ – or like good philosophical or moral idea – ‘well, you can live this way…’ No! It’s something else. It needs to be proposed with this frankness, with this force, so that the Word penetrates, as Paul says, ‘to the bone.’ The Word of God must be proclaimed with this frankness, with this force… with courage. The person who doesn't have courage – spiritual courage, courage of heart, who is not enamoured of Jesus, and from there comes courage! – No, you will say, yes, something interesting, something moral, something that will do you good, a good philanthropy, but this is not the Word of God. And this is incapable, this word, of forming the people of God. Only the Word of God proclaimed with this frankness, with this courage, is capable of forming the people of God.”
Without prayer the Word of God becomes a conference
From the Gospel of St Luke, Pope Francis takes two other traits proper to a “herald” of the Word of God. The day’s Gospel is “a little strange” the Pope said, because it is rich in elements concerning the proclamation. “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few. So ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest,” the Pope said, repeating the words of Christ. The second trait, then, after the courage of missionaries, is “prayer.”
“The Word of God should be proclaimed with prayer, also. Always. Without prayer, you could have a good conference, good instruction: good, good! But it is not the Word of God. The Word of God can only come from a heart in prayer. Prayer, so that the Lord might accompany this sowing of the Word, so that the Lord might water the seed so that the Word will sprout. The Word of God should be proclaimed with prayer: the prayer of the one who proclaims the Word of God.”
The true preacher is humble, otherwise things end badly
In the Gospel there is also a third interesting trait: The Lord sends His disciples “like lambs amid wolves”:
“The true preacher is the one who knows he is weak, who knows that he cannot defend himself. ‘You are going out like a lamb among wolves’ – ‘But Lord, why would they eat me?’ – ‘You are going! This is the journey.’ And I think it was Chrysostom who has a very profound reflection, when he says: ‘But if you do not go like sheep, but you go like a wolf among wolves, the Lord, will not defend you: you’ll have to fend for yourself.’ When the preacher believes he is too intelligent, or when the one who is responsible for carrying forward the Word of God tries to be clever – ‘Ah, I can get along with these people’ – just so, it will end badly. Or you will bargain away the Word of God: to the powerful, to the proud…”
And to emphasize the humility of the great heralds, Pope Francis recalled a story told to him by someone “who boasted of preaching the Word of God well, and who felt he was a wolf.” After a good sermon, the Pope said, “he went to the confessional, and found there a ‘great fish,’ a great sinner, and he wept,… he wanted to ask for forgiveness.” And “this confessor,” the Pope continued, “began to swell up with pride” and “curiosity” and asked him which word had touched him so much “that he was moved to repent.” “It was when you said,” the Pope concluded, “let’s move on to another topic.” “I don’t know if it’s true,” the Pope clarified, but it certainly is true that you will finish badly if carry the Gospel “feeling sure of yourself, and not like a lamb, whom the Lord will defend.
Going forth courageously, with prayer and humility, like Cyril and Methodius
And so, the Pope concluded, this is the missionary character of the Church and of the great heralds, “who have planted and have helped the Church to grow in the world. They were courageous, men of prayer, and humble.” He concluded his homily with the prayer: May Sts Cyril and Methodius, help us “to proclaim the Word of God” according to these criteria, as they did. 

Top 30 Catholic Love Quotes to SHARE - Amazing #Quotes from Saints on #Love


1. "Spread love everywhere you go: first of all in your own house. Give love to your children, to your wife or husband, to a next door neighbor... Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness; kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile, kindness in your warm greeting."
--Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta

2. Pure love ... knows that only one thing is needed to please God: to do even the smallest things out of great love - love, and always love. (140)
--Divine Mercy in My Soul, St. Faustina
3. "The proof of love is in the works. Where love exists, it works great things. But when it ceases to act, it ceases to exist."
--Pope St. Gregory the Great

4. "What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like."
--St. Augustine of Hippo

5. "You know well enough that Our Lord does not look so much at the greatness of our actions, nor even at their difficulty, but at the love with which we do them."
--St. Therese of Lisieux 

6. "Lord, grant that I might not so much seek to be loved as to love."
--Saint Francis of Assisi

7. "As for what concerns our relations with our fellow men, the anguish in our neighbor's soul must break all precept. All that we do is a means to an end, but love is an end in itself, because God is love."
--St. Edith Stein

8. "Our Lord loves you and loves you tenderly; and if He does not let you feel the sweetness of His love, it is to make you more humble and abject in your own eyes."
--St. Pio of Pietrelcino

9."We must love our neighbor as being made in the image of God and as an object of His love."
--Saint Vincent de Paul

10."What a weakness it is to love Jesus Christ only when He caresses us, and to be cold immediately once He afflicts us. This is not true love. Those who love thus, love themselves too much to love God with all their heart."
--St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

11."The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love; It signifies Love, It produces love. The Eucharist is the consummation of the whole spiritual life."
--Saint Thomas Aquinas

12. Charity is the sweet and holy bond which links the soul with its Creator: it binds God with man and man with God.
--Saint Catherine of Siena

13. 'The person who loves God cannot help loving every man as himself, even though he is grieved by the passions of those who are not yet purified. But when they amend their lives, his delight is indescribable and knows no bounds. A soul filled with thoughts of sensual desire and hatred is unpurified. If we detect any trace of hatred in our hearts against any man whatsoever for committing any fault, we are utterly estranged from love for God, since love for God absolutely precludes us from hating any man.'
--St. Maximos the Confessor

14. What is the mark of love for your neighbor? Not to seek what is for your own benefit, but what is for the benefit of the one loved, both in body and in soul.
--St. Basil the Great

15. "You learn to speak by speaking, to study by studying, to run by running, to work by working, and just so, you learn to love by loving. All those who think to learn in any other way deceive themselves."
--St. Francis de Sales

16. "Everything comes from love,
all is ordained for the salvation of man,
God does nothing without this goal in mind."
--St. Catherine of Siena


17. "We cannot all do great things, but we can do small things with great love"
--Blessed Mother Teresa


18. "There is no place for selfishness—and no place for fear! Do not be afraid, then, when love makes demands. Do not be afraid when love requires sacrifice"
--Pope John Paul II

19. "We become what we love and who we love shapes what we become. If we love things, we become a thing. If we love nothing, we become nothing. Imitation is not a literal mimicking of Christ, rather it means becoming the image of the beloved, an image disclosed through transformation. This means we are to become vessels of God´s compassionate love for others. "
--St. Clare of Assisi

20. "Nothing is sweeter than love, nothing stronger or higher or wider; nothing is more pleasant, nothing fuller, and nothing better in heaven or on earth, for love is born of God and cannot rest except in God, Who is above all created things."
--St. Thomas a Kempis, Imitation of Christ

21. "Love is the most necessary of all virtues. Love in the person who preaches the word of God is like fire in a musket. If a person were to throw a bullet with his hands, he would hardly make a dent in anything; but if the person takes the same bullet and ignites some gunpowder behind it, it can kill. It is much the same with the word of God. If it is spoken by someone who is filled with the fire of charity- the fire of love of God and neighbor- it will work wonders."
--St. Anthony Mary Claret (from his autobiography).

22. "Real love is demanding. I would fail in my mission if I did not tell you so. Love demands a personal commitment to the will of God."
--Pope John Paul II


23. “God loves each of us as if there were only one of us.”
--St Augustine


24. Always remember to love your neighbor; always prefer the one who tries your patience, who test your virtue, because with her you can always merit: suffering is Love; the Law is Love. 
--Bl Mary of Jesus Crucified "The Little Arab"


25. A soul enkindled with love is a gentle, meek, humble, and patient soul. 
--St John of the Cross, OCD

26. You know that our Lord does not look at the greatness or difficulty of our action, but at the love with which you do it. What, then, have you to fear? 
--St Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face, OCD


27. What we need most in order to make progress is to be silent before this great God with our appetite and with our tongue, for the language he best hears is silent love.   
--St John of the Cross, OCD


28. Love takes up where knowledge leaves off.
--Saint Thomas Aquinas

29. 'My Jesus, fill my heart with so much love that one day it will break just to be with you. My Jesus, you know I have placed you as a seal on my heart. Remain there always.'
--St. Bernadette Soubirous

30."He alone loves the Creator perfectly
who manifests a pure love for his neighbor." 
--St. Bede the Venerable

#Novena to St. Valentine - Patron of #Love, #Marriage and #Fiancees - #Prayers to SHARE

St. Valentine is Patron Saint of fianced couples, against fainting, bee keepers, happy marriages, love, plague, epilepsy. Say for 9 days along with 1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary and 1 Glory be each day: 
"O glorious advocate and protector, St Valentine,
look with pity upon our wants,
hear our requests,
attend to our prayers,
relieve by your intercession the miseries
under which we labour,
and obtain for us the divine blessing,
that we may be found worthy to join you
in praising the Almighty for all
eternity: through the merits of
Our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen."

Prayer to St. Valentine
Almighty God, grant we beseech You,
that we who celebrate the glorious martyrdom of St. Valentine, Your
servant, may by his intercession be filled with the love of God and
neighbor and be delivered from all the evils that threaten us.

We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Tuesday February 14, 2017 - #Eucharist


Memorial of Saints Cyril, Monk, and Methodius, Bishop
Lectionary: 336


Reading 1GN 6:5-8; 7:1-5, 10

When the LORD saw how great was man's wickedness on earth,
and how no desire that his heart conceived
was ever anything but evil,
he regretted that he had made man on the earth,
and his heart was grieved.

So the LORD said:
"I will wipe out from the earth the men whom I have created,
and not only the men,
but also the beasts and the creeping things and the birds of the air,
for I am sorry that I made them."
But Noah found favor with the LORD.

Then the LORD said to Noah:
"Go into the ark, you and all your household,
for you alone in this age have I found to be truly just.
Of every clean animal, take with you seven pairs,
a male and its mate;
and of the unclean animals, one pair,
a male and its mate;
likewise, of every clean bird of the air, seven pairs,
a male and a female,
and of all the unclean birds, one pair,
a male and a female.
Thus you will keep their issue alive over all the earth.
Seven days from now I will bring rain down on the earth
for forty days and forty nights,
and so I will wipe out from the surface of the earth
every moving creature that I have made."
Noah did just as the LORD had commanded him.

As soon as the seven days were over,
the waters of the flood came upon the earth.

Responsorial PsalmPS 29:1A AND 2, 3AC-4, 3B AND 9C-10

R. (11b) The Lord will bless his people with peace.
Give to the LORD, you sons of God,
give to the LORD glory and praise,
Give to the LORD the glory due his name;
adore the LORD in holy attire.
R. The Lord will bless his people with peace.
The voice of the LORD is over the waters,
the LORD, over vast waters.
The voice of the LORD is mighty;
the voice of the LORD is majestic.
R. The Lord will bless his people with peace.
The God of glory thunders,
and in his temple all say, "Glory!"
The LORD is enthroned above the flood;
the LORD is enthroned as king forever.
R. The Lord will bless his people with peace.

AlleluiaJN 14:23

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Whoever loves me will keep my word, says the Lord;
and my Father will love him
and we will come to him.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 8:14-21

The disciples had forgotten to bring bread,
and they had only one loaf with them in the boat.
Jesus enjoined them, "Watch out,
guard against the leaven of the Pharisees
and the leaven of Herod."
They concluded among themselves that
it was because they had no bread.
When he became aware of this he said to them,
"Why do you conclude that it is because you have no bread?
Do you not yet understand or comprehend?
Are your hearts hardened?
Do you have eyes and not see, ears and not hear?
And do you not remember,
when I broke the five loaves for the five thousand,
how many wicker baskets full of fragments you picked up?"
They answered him, "Twelve."
"When I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand,
how many full baskets of fragments did you pick up?"
They answered him, "Seven."
He said to them, "Do you still not understand?"