Sunday, November 19, 2017

Wow #PopeFrancis hosts 1500 for Lunch for World Day for the Poor and sets up Field Hospital on #Vatican Grounds!

Vatican Radio Text Report: This Sunday, November 19th marks the first World Day of the Poor, which Pope Francis called for at the conclusion of the Jubilee Year of Mercy.
The Pontifical Council for New Evangelisation on Tuesday announced a number of special events that are taking place throughout the week to highlight this annual initiative.
 On Sunday morning in St Peter’s Basilica, some four thousand poor and needy people, accompanied by volunteers from Italy, France, Spain, Brussels, Luxembourg and Poland will take part in a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis. Following the Eucharist, 1.500 of the visitors will be invited to lunch in the adjacent Paul VI Hall, while the other 2.500 guests will be taken to lunch in some of the Catholic colleges, seminaries and charitable organisations in the vicinity of the Vatican. Festive lunch in Paul VI Hall Those dining in the Paul VI Hall will be served a meal of gnocchi with tomato sauce and veal stew with vegetables, plus tiramisu and coffee for desert, all prepared by papal chef Sergio Dussin from Bassano del Grappa in Italy’s northern Veneto region. The Vatican police band and a children’s choir will provide background music for the festive lunch, which has been organised in collaboration with a number of local charity organisations and parishes. Prayer vigil at St Lawrence Basilica On the previous evening, Saturday 18th at 8pm, there will also be a prayer vigil in the ancient Rome Basilica of St Lawrence to remember volunteers all over the world who offer their services in support of the poor and marginalized. Throughout the week of the 13th to 19th November, meanwhile, a mobile clinic has been set up just in front of St Peter’s Square offering free specialized medical services between the hours of 9am and 4pm. Free medical services A special booklet marking this first World Day of the Poor has also been published in six languages as a pastoral aid for dioceses and parishes worldwide who wish to take part in this important initiative. Radio Vaticana Text-Image

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#PopeFrancis "I hope that the poor will be at the center of our them we encounter Jesus," #Angelus - FULL TEXT + Video

Before the Angelus:
Dear Brothers and Sisters, good morning!
In this penultimate Sunday of the Liturgical Year, the Gospel presents the parable of the talents (Cf. Matthew 25:14-30). Before leaving on a journey, a man gave his servants talents, which at the time were coins of notable value: to one servant five talents, to another two, and to another one, according to each one’s ability. The servant that received five talents was entrepreneurial and made them yield, earning another five. The servant who received two behaved in the same way, and earned another two. Instead, the servant that received one dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s coin.
It’s this same servant that explained to his master, on his return, the reason for his gesture, saying: “Lord, I know you are a hard man, who reap where you have not sown and gather where you have not winnowed. I was afraid and I went and hid your talent in the ground (vv. 24-25). This servant doesn’t have a relationship of trust with his master, but is afraid of him, and this blocks him. Fear always immobilizes and often makes one carry out mistaken choices.” Fear discourages one from taking initiatives; it induces one to take refuge in secure and guaranteed solutions, and thus one ends by not doing anything good. One must not be afraid; one must have trust to go forward and to grow in life’s journey.
This parable makes us understand how important it is to have a true idea of God. We must not think that He is a wicked master, hard and severe who wants to punish us. If this mistaken image of God is within us, then our life can’t be fecund, because we’ll live in fear and this won’t lead us to anything constructive, rather, fear paralizes us, it’s self-destructive. We are called to reflect to discover what is truly our idea of God. Already in the Old Testament He revealed Himself as “merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and a bounding in steadfast love and faithfulness” (Exodus 34:6). And Jesus always showed us that God isn’t a severe and intolerant master, but a Father full of love, of tenderness, a Father full of goodness. Therefore we can and must have immense trust in Him.
Jesus shows us the generosity and care of the Father in many ways: with His word, with His gestures, with His reception of all, especially of sinners, little ones and the poor – as the World Day of the Poor reminds us today –; but also with His admonitions, which reveal His interest so that we won’t waste our life uselessly. In fact, it’s a sign that God esteems us greatly: this awareness helps us to be responsible persons in all our actions. Therefore, the parable of the talents calls us to a personal responsibility and a fidelity that becomes also the capacity to set out continually on new paths, without burying our talent, namely, the gifts that God has entrusted to us, and of which He will ask us to account.
May the Holy Virgin intercede for us, so that we remain faithful to the Will of God, making the talents fructify with which He has gifted us. Thus we will be useful to others and, on the last day, the Lord will receive us, <and> will invite us to take part in His joy.
[Original text: Italian]  [ZENIT’s translation by Virginia M. Forrester]

After the Angelus:
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Yesterday Francis Solano, priest of the Friars Minor Capuchin, was proclaimed Blessed at Detroit, in the United States of America.  Humble and faithful disciple of Christ, he was distinguished for his tireless service to the poor. May his witness help priests, Religious and laity to live with joy the bond between the proclamation of the Gospel and love of the poor.
It’s what we wished to recall with today’s World Day of the Poor, which is expressed in Rome and in dioceses worldwide in many initiatives of prayer and sharing. I hope that the poor will be at the center of our communities and not only in moments such as this, but always, because they are at the heart of the Gospel; in them we encounter Jesus, who speaks to us and challenges us through their sufferings and their needs.
I wish to remember today in a particular way the populations that experience painful poverty caused by war and conflicts. Hence, I renew my heartfelt appeal to the International Community, to make every possible effort to foster peace, in particular, in the Middle East. A special thought goes to the dear Lebanese people and I pray for the country’s stability, so that it can continue to be a “message” of respect and coexistence for the whole Region and for the entire world.
I pray also for the persons of the crew of the Argentine military submarine, <all> traces <of which> have been lost.
Today is also the Day to remember road victims, instituted by the UN. I encourage public institutions in the commitment to prevention, and I exhort drivers to prudence and respect of the norms, as the first form of protection of oneself and others.
I greet all of you, families, parishes, Associations and individual faithful, who have come from Italy and from many parts of the world. In particular, I greet the pilgrims of the Dominican Republic; the participants in the solidarity race from Kosice (Slovakia) to Rome; and the Ecuadorian community resident in Rome, which is celebrating the Virgin of Quinche. I greet the fraternities of the Italian Trinitarian Secular Order, the faithful of Civitanova Marche, Sanzeno, Termoli, Capua and Nola, and the young Confirmation candidates of Mestrino (Padua).
I wish you all a happy Sunday. And, please, don’t forget to pray for me. Have a good lunch and goodbye!
[Original text: Italian]  [Blogger Entry SHARE of ZENIT’s translation by Virginia M. Forrester]

#PopeFrancis "In the poor, Jesus knocks on the doors of our heart' Mass on World Day of the #Poor - FULL TEXT/VIDEO

Pope Francis celebrated Mass on Sunday – the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time and the 1st World Day of the Poor - – in St. Peter’s Basilica.
Below, please find the full text of his homily - official English translation… 
We have the joy of breaking the bread of God’s word, and shortly, we will have the joy of breaking and receiving the Bread of the Eucharist, food for life’s journey. All of us, none excluded, need this, for all of us are beggars when it comes to what is essential: God’s love, which gives meaning to our lives and a life without end. So today too, we lift up our hands to him, asking to receive his gifts.
The Gospel parable speaks of gifts. It tells us that we have received talents from God, “according to ability of each” (Mt 25:15). Before all else, let us realize this: we do have talents; in God’s eyes, we are “talented”. Consequently, no one can think that he or she is useless, so poor as to be incapable of giving something to others. We are chosen and blessed by God, who wants to fill us with his gifts, more than any father or mother does with their own children. And God, in whose eyes no child can be neglected, entrusts to each of us a mission.
Indeed, as the loving and demanding Father that he is, he gives us responsibility. In the parable, we see that each servant is given talents to use wisely. But whereas the first two servants do what they are charged, the third does not make his talents bear fruit; he gives back only what he had received. “I was afraid – he says – and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours” (v. 25). As a result, he is harshly rebuked as “wicked and lazy” (v. 26). What made the Master displeased with him? To use a word that may sound a little old-fashioned but is still timely, I would say it was his omission. His evil was that of failing to do good. All too often, we have the idea that we haven’t done anything wrong, and so we rest content, presuming that we are good and just. But in this way we risk acting like the unworthy servant: he did no wrong, he didn’t waste the talent, in fact he kept it carefully hidden in the ground. But to do no wrong is not enough. God is not an inspector looking for unstamped tickets; he is a Father looking for children to whom he can entrust his property and his plans (cf. v. 14). It is sad when the Father of love does not receive a generous response of love from his children, who do no more than keep the rules and follow the commandments, like hired hands in the house of the Father (cf. Lk 15:17).
The unworthy servant, despite receiving a talent from the Master who loves to share and multiply his gifts, guarded it jealously; he was content to keep it safe. But someone concerned only to preserve and maintain the treasures of the past is not being faithful to God. Instead, the parable tells us, the one who adds new talents is truly “faithful” (vv. 21 and 23), because he sees things as God does; he does not stand still, but instead, out of love, takes risks. He puts his life on the line for others; he is not content to keep things as they are. One thing alone does he overlook: his own interest. That is the only right “omission”.
Omission is also the great sin where the poor are concerned. Here it has a specific name: indifference. It is when we say, “That doesn’t regard me; it’s not my business; it’s society’s problem”. It is when we turn away from a brother or sister in need, when we change channels as soon as a disturbing question comes up, when we grow indignant at evil but do nothing about it. God will not ask us if we felt righteous indignation, but whether we did some good.
How, in practice can we please God? When we want to please someone dear to us, for example by giving a gift, we need first to know that person’s tastes, lest the gift prove more pleasing to the giver than to the recipient. When we want to offer something to the Lord, we can find his tastes in the Gospel. Immediately following the passage that we heard today, Jesus says, “Truly I tell you that, just as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me” (Mt 25:40). These least of our brethren, whom he loves dearly, are the hungry and the sick, the stranger and the prisoner, the poor and the abandoned, the suffering who receive no help, the needy who are cast aside. On their faces we can imagine seeing Jesus’ own face; on their lips, even if pursed in pain, we can hear his words: “This is my body” (Mt 26:26).
In the poor, Jesus knocks on the doors of our heart, thirsting for our love. When we overcome our indifference and, in the name of Jesus, we give of ourselves for the least of his brethren, we are his good and faithful friends, with whom he loves to dwell. God greatly appreciates the attitude described in today’s first reading that of the “good wife”, who “opens her hand to the poor, and reaches out her hands to the needy” (Prov 31:10.20). Here we see true goodness and strength: not in closed fists and crossed arms, but in ready hands outstretched to the poor, to the wounded flesh of the Lord.
There, in the poor, we find the presence of Jesus, who, though rich, became poor (cf. 2 Cor 8:9). For this reason, in them, in their weakness, a “saving power” is present. And if in the eyes of the world they have little value, they are the ones who open to us the way to heaven; they are our “passport to paradise”. For us it is an evangelical duty to care for them, as our real riches, and to do so not only by giving them bread, but also by breaking with them the bread of God’s word, which is addressed first to them. To love the poor means to combat all forms of poverty, spiritual and material.
And it will also do us good. Drawing near to the poor in our midst will touch our lives. It will remind us of what really counts: to love God and our neighbour. Only this lasts forever, everything else passes away. What we invest in love remains, the rest vanishes. Today we might ask ourselves: “What counts for me in life? Where am I making my investments?” In fleeting riches, with which the world is never satisfied, or in the wealth bestowed by God, who gives eternal life? This is the choice before us: to live in order to gain things on earth, or to give things away in order to gain heaven. Where heaven is concerned, what matters is not what we have, but what we give, for “those who store up treasures for themselves, do not grow rich in the sight of God” (Lk 12:21).
So let us not seek for ourselves more than we need, but rather what is good for others, and nothing of value will be lacking to us. May the Lord, who has compassion for our poverty and needs, and bestows his talents upon us, grant us the wisdom to seek what really matters, and the courage to love, not in words but in deeds.

Quote to SHARE by #MotherTeresa "Let us touch the dying, the poor, the lonely and the unwanted...let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work."

"Let us touch the dying, the poor, the lonely and the unwanted according to the graces we have received and let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work."
 St. Mother Teresa 

#ArchBishop Fisher "millions of Australians still stand by the conviction that marriage is...between a man and woman." Australia - FULL TEXT

Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese,
15 Nov 2017

Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP
The Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, Most Rev. Anthony Fisher OP, says he is both disappointed and heartened by the result of the National Marriage Postal Survey on changing the legal definition of marriage in Australia.
"While I do not deny the good will of many who voted Yes, I am deeply disappointed that the likely result will be legislation to further deconstruct marriage and family in Australia," Archbishop Fisher said.
"But I am heartened that millions of Australians still stand by the conviction that marriage is a unique relationship between a man and woman. In fact, only 48% of eligible voters voted Yes to redefining marriage in law."
"To the many already-married couples and those contemplating it I say: don't let this decision dishearten you or undermine your appreciation of the sanctity of real marriage."
Archbishop Fisher said he wished to acknowledge all those who had courageously spoken up for traditional marriage in very difficult circumstances.
"From the outset it has often seemed a David and Goliath struggle with politicians, corporates, celebrities, journalists, professional and sporting organisations drowning out the voices of ordinary Australians and pressuring everyone to vote Yes," the Archbishop said. "What's remarkable is how many stuck to their guns and voted No or abstained."
"I recognise that for some people this debate has been a cause of distress. It is time now to come together as a nation, renew our friendships with those who think differently to us, and ensure that respect for different beliefs is clearly enshrined in our laws and customs."
Archbishop Fisher said it was vital that new marriage legislation protects rights to religious belief and expression, free speech and association, in education and parenting. "Polling data shows both yes and no voters support robust religious liberty protections."
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has previously said he believes in religious freedom "even more strongly" than in same-sex marriage and Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has promised to ensure that any marriage redefinition also respects freedom of religion.
"Lame proposals to protect ministers of religion and places of worship offer no protection to the 99.9% of religious believers who are not clergy," the Archbishop said. "It is imperative that our political leaders enact laws that protect the rights of all, religious believers included.
"Many of those who voted Yes and celebrate today's 'victory' no doubt do so out of love and respect for same-sex attracted people. Many of us No voters likewise count same-sex attracted people among family, friends, colleagues and neighbours and we abhor bigotry, vilification or discrimination against them. We trust that our community can show a similar generosity of spirit towards those with religious faith.
"As we create a legal 'right' to marry a person of the same sex, we must not trade off existing rights to religious belief and expression, and other freedoms. There is room in the Australian public square for both. Surely it is not beyond the wit and good will of our political leaders to progress both concerns."
Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP
Catholic Archbishop of Sydney

A Video by Archbishop Fisher made before the Vote Results:

Sunday Mass Online : Sun. November 19, 2017 - #Eucharist - Readings + Video - 33rd Ord. Time - A

Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 157

Reading 1PRV 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31

When one finds a worthy wife,
her value is far beyond pearls.
Her husband, entrusting his heart to her,
has an unfailing prize.
She brings him good, and not evil,
all the days of her life.
She obtains wool and flax
and works with loving hands.
She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her fingers ply the spindle.
She reaches out her hands to the poor,
and extends her arms to the needy.
Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting;
the woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
Give her a reward for her labors,
and let her works praise her at the city gates.

Responsorial PsalmPS 128:1-2, 3, 4-5

R. (cf. 1a) Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
Blessed are you who fear the LORD,
who walk in his ways!
For you shall eat the fruit of your handiwork;
blessed shall you be, and favored.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
in the recesses of your home;
Your children like olive plants
around your table.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
Behold, thus is the man blessed
who fears the LORD.
The LORD bless you from Zion:
may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
all the days of your life.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord.

Reading 21 THES 5:1-6

Concerning times and seasons, brothers and sisters,
you have no need for anything to be written to you.
For you yourselves know very well that the day of the Lord will come
like a thief at night.
When people are saying, "Peace and security, "
then sudden disaster comes upon them,
like labor pains upon a pregnant woman,
and they will not escape.

But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness,
for that day to overtake you like a thief.
For all of you are children of the light
and children of the day.
We are not of the night or of darkness.
Therefore, let us not sleep as the rest do,
but let us stay alert and sober.

AlleluiaJN 15:4A, 5B

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Remain in me as I remain in you, says the Lord.
Whoever remains in me bears much fruit.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMT 25:14-30

Jesus told his disciples this parable:
"A man going on a journey
called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them.
To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one--
to each according to his ability.
Then he went away.
Immediately the one who received five talents went and traded with them,
and made another five.
Likewise, the one who received two made another two.
But the man who received one went off and dug a hole in the ground
and buried his master's money.

After a long time
the master of those servants came back
and settled accounts with them.
The one who had received five talents came forward
bringing the additional five.
He said, 'Master, you gave me five talents.
See, I have made five more.'
His master said to him, 'Well done, my good and faithful servant.
Since you were faithful in small matters,
I will give you great responsibilities.
Come, share your master's joy.'
Then the one who had received two talents also came forward and said,
'Master, you gave me two talents.
See, I have made two more.'
His master said to him, 'Well done, my good and faithful servant.
Since you were faithful in small matters,
I will give you great responsibilities.
Come, share your master's joy.'
Then the one who had received the one talent came forward and said,
'Master, I knew you were a demanding person,
harvesting where you did not plant
and gathering where you did not scatter;
so out of fear I went off and buried your talent in the ground.
Here it is back.'
His master said to him in reply, 'You wicked, lazy servant!
So you knew that I harvest where I did not plant
and gather where I did not scatter?
Should you not then have put my money in the bank
so that I could have got it back with interest on my return?
Now then! Take the talent from him and give it to the one with ten.
For to everyone who has,
more will be given and he will grow rich;
but from the one who has not,
even what he has will be taken away.
And throw this useless servant into the darkness outside,
where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.'"

OrMT 25:14-15, 19-21

Jesus told his disciples this parable:
"A man going on a journey
called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them.
To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one--
to each according to his ability.
Then he went away.

After a long time
the master of those servants came back
and settled accounts with them.
The one who had received five talents came forward
bringing the additional five.
He said, 'Master, you gave me five talents.
See, I have made five more.'
His master said to him, 'Well done, my good and faithful servant.
Since you were faithful in small matters,
I will give you great responsibilities.
Come, share your master's joy.'"