Sunday, January 21, 2018

#BreakingNews Gov. Police Attack Churches in Dem. Rep. of Congo by firing on Parishioners - Please Pray - FULL TEXT

FULL TEXT Official Release of the Dominican Order: 
The Dominican brothers working at St Dominic Church, Limete, Kinshasa, DR Congo were attacked together with their parishioners on Sunday, December 31, 2017. They were attacked by security forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo made up of soldiers and the police.
The Catholic bishops of the Democratic Republic of Congo, supported by a coalition of civil society groups, called for peaceful demonstrations after Sunday Mass on December 31, 2017, to denounce a new electoral reform law that came into effect on December 25, and to mark the first-year anniversary of the 31 December 2016 political agreement, facilitated by the bishops.
President Kabila, whose mandate ended in December 2016, had agreed to set an election date by the end of 2017 to ease tensions in the mineral-rich country. However, the country’s election commission has now said that the vote cannot be held until December 2018. Critics accuse Kabila of postponing elections to maintain his grip on power, causing tensions to increase and provoking violence and deadly street demonstrations across the country since the end of 2016.
The government refused permits for the December 31 demonstrations for what it called security reasons, yet more than 160 churches in many parts of the country participated in the call.  Police responded with teargas, rubber bullets and even live ammunition. At least seven people were killed and many others seriously injured. Many were also arrested.
Several police came to St Dominic’s Parish in Kinshasa, run by our Dominican friars, and fired on parishioners in the church grounds and even inside the church. One woman was shot in the forehead by a live bullet, others in their legs, and a friar, Jean Nkongolo, was shot in the face at close range by a rubber bullet.

Another demonstration was planned for Sunday, January 21.
Let us show solidarity with our brothers and sisters in praying for justice and peace in the DRC.
(21 January 2018)

Pope Francis "Jesus continues to walk on our streets. He knocks today, as he did yesterday, on our doors and hearts..." Homily FULL TEXT + Video in Peru

Peru Journey Mass at Las Palmas airbase Lima Full Text
Pope Francis' homily at the Las Palmas airbase in Lima “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim to it the message that I tell you” (Jon 3:2).  With these words the Lord spoke to Jonah and directed him to set out towards that great city, which was about to be destroyed for its many evils.  In the Gospel, we also see Jesus setting out towards Galilee to preach the Good News (cf. Mk 1:14).  Both readings reveal a God who turns his gaze towards cities past and present. The Lord sets out on a journey: to Nineveh, to Galilee, to Lima, to Trujillo and Puerto Maldonado… the Lord comes here.  He sets out to enter into our individual, concrete histories.  We celebrated this not long ago: he is Emmanuel, the God who wants to be with us always.  Yes, here in Lima, or wherever you are living, in the routine of your daily life and work, in the education to hope that you impart to your children, amid your aspirations and anxieties; within the privacy of the home and the deafening noise of our streets.  It is there, along the dusty paths of history, that the Lord comes to meet each of you.
         Sometimes what happened to Jonah can happen to us.  Our cities, with their daily situations of pain and injustice, can leave us tempted to flee, to hide, to run away.  Jonah, and we, have plenty of excuses to do so.  Looking at the city, we can start by saying that there are “citizens who find adequate means to develop their personal and family life – and that pleases us – yet the problem is the many “non-citizens”, “the half-citizens” or “urban remnants”[1].  They are found along our roadsides, living on the fringes of our cities, and lacking the conditions needed for a dignified existence.  It is painful to realize that among these “urban remnants” all too often we see the faces of children and adolescents.  We look at the face of the future.  
         Seeing these things in our cities and our neighbourhoods – which should be places of encounter, solidarity and joy – we end up with what we might call the Jonah syndrome: we lose heart and want to flee (cf. Jon 1:3).  We become indifferent, and as a result, anonymous and deaf to others, cold and hard of heart. When this happens, we wound the soul of our people.  As Benedict XVI pointed out, “the true measure of humanity is essentially determined in relationship to suffering and to the sufferer…  A society unable to accept its suffering members and incapable of helping to share their suffering and to bear it inwardly through ‘com-passion’ is a cruel and inhuman society”.[2]
         After they arrested John, Jesus set out to Galilee to proclaim the Gospel of God.  Unlike Jonah, Jesus reacted to the distressing and unjust news of John’s arrest by entering the city; he entered Galilee and from its small towns he began to sow the seeds of a great hope: that the Kingdom of God is at hand, that God is among us.  The Gospel itself shows us the joy and the rippling effect that this brought about: it started with Simon and Andrew, then James and John (cf. Mk 1:14-20).  It then passed through Saint Rose de Lima, Saint Turibius, Saint Martin de Porres, Saint Juan Macías, Saint Francisco Solano, down to us, proclaimed by that cloud of witnesses that have believed in him.  It has come to us in order to act once more as a timely antidote to the globalization of indifference.  In the face of that Love, one cannot remain indifferent.
         Jesus invites his disciples to experience in the present a taste of eternity: the love of God and neighbour.  He does this the only way he can, God’s way, by awakening tenderness and love of mercy, by awakening compassion and opening their eyes to see reality as God does.  He invites them to generate new bonds, new covenants rich in eternal life.
         Jesus walks through the city with his disciples and begins to see, to hear, to notice those who have given up in the face of indifference, laid low by the grave sin of corruption.  He begins to bring to light many situations that had killed the hope of his people and to awaken a new hope.  He calls his disciples and invites them to set out with him.  He calls them to walk through to the city, but at a different pace; he teaches them to notice what they had previously overlooked, and he points out new and pressing needs.  Repent, he tells them.   The Kingdom of Heaven means finding in Jesus a God who gets involved with the lives of his people.  He gets involved and involves others not to be afraid to make of our history a history of salvation (cf. Mk 1:15, 21).
         Jesus continues to walk on our streets.  He knocks today, as he did yesterday, on our doors and hearts, in order to rekindle the flame of hope and the aspiration that breakdown can be overcome by fraternity, injustice defeated by solidarity, violence silenced by the weapons of peace.  Jesus continues to call us; he wants to anoint us with his Spirit so that we too can go out to anoint others with the oil capable of healing wounded hopes and renewing our way of seeing things.
         Jesus continues to walk and to awaken hope, a hope that frees us from empty associations and impersonal analyses.  He encourages us to enter like leaven into where we are, where we live, into every corner of our daily life.  The kingdom of heaven is among you, he tells us.  It is there wherever we strive to show a little tenderness and compassion, wherever we are unafraid to create spaces for the blind to see, the paralyzed to walk, lepers to be cleansed and the deaf to hear (cf. Lk 7:22), so that all those we had given up for lost can enjoy the resurrection.  God will never tire of setting out to meet his children.  How will we enkindle hope if prophets are lacking?  How will we face the future if unity is lacking?  How will Jesus reach all those corners if daring and courageous witnesses are lacking?
         Today the Lord calls each of you to walk with him in the city, in your city.  He invites you to become his missionary disciple, so that you can become part of that great whisper that wants to keep echoing in the different corners of our lives: Rejoice, the Lord is with you!   
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#PopeFrancis "The joy of the Gospel is for all people: no one can be excluded”. FULL TEXT to Bishops + Video

Pope Francis speaks to Peru's bishops: Full text
We bring you the full text of Pope Francis' prepared remarks delivered to the bishops of Peru in the Archbishop's Residence in Lima on the final day of his Apostolic Visit. Meeting with the Peruvian Bishops
Lima, Archbishop’s House
Sunday, 21 January 2018
Dear Brother Bishops,
         Thank you for the kind words addressed to me by the Cardinal Archbishop of Lima and the President of the Episcopal Conference in the name of all present.  I have looked forward to being here with you.  I recall with pleasure your visit ad limina last year.
         These days I have spent among you have been very intense and gratifying.  I have been able to learn about and experience the different realities that shape these lands, and to share at first hand the faith of God’s holy and faithful people, which does us so much good.  Thank you for the opportunity to “touch” the faith of the people that God has entrusted to you.
         The theme of this Visit speaks to us of unity and hope.  This is a demanding yet exciting programme, which makes us think us of the heroic accomplishments of Saint Turibius of Mogrovejo, archbishop of this see and patron of the Latin American episcopate, an example of a “builder of ecclesial unity”, as my predecessor, Saint John Paul II described him during his first Apostolic Visit to this land.[1]
         It is significant that this holy bishop is frequently portrayed as a “new Moses”.  As you know, the Vatican has a picture in which Saint Turibius appears crossing a great river whose waters open before him like the Red Sea, so that he could get to the other shore, where a numerous group of natives awaited him. Behind Saint Turibius is a great crowd, representing the faithful people who follow their shepherd in the task of evangelization.[2]  This beautiful image can serve to anchor my reflection with you.  Saint Turibius, the man who wanted to get to the other shore.
         We see him from the time in which he accepted the mandate to come to these lands with the mission to be a father and a shepherd.  He left the security of familiar surroundings in order to enter a completely new universe, unknown and filled with challenges.  He journeyed towards a promised land guided by faith as “the assurance of things hoped for” (Heb 11:1).  His faith and his trust in the Lord impelled him, then and for the rest of his life, to get to the other shore, where the Lord himself was waiting for him in the midst of a great crowd.
1.      He wanted to get to the other shore in search of the distant and dispersed.  To do so, he had to leave behind the comfort of the bishop’s residence and traverse the territory entrusted to him in constant pastoral visits; he tried to visit and stay wherever he was needed, and how greatly was he needed!  He went out to encounter everyone, along paths that, in the words of his secretary, were meant more for goats than for people.  Turibius had to face greatly differing climates and landscapes, “of the twenty-two years of his episcopate, eighteen were spent outside of his city, three times crossing his territory”.[3]  He knew that this was the one way to be a pastor: to be close to his own, dispensing the sacraments, and he constantly exhorted his priests to do the same.  He did so not only by words, but by his witness in the front lines of evangelization.  Today we would call him a “street” bishop.  A bishop with shoes worn out by walking, by constant travel, by setting out to “preach the Gospel to all: to all places, on all occasions, without hesitation, reluctance and fear.  The joy of the Gospel is for all people: no one can be excluded”.[4].  How much Saint Turibius knew this!  Without fear and without hesitation he immersed himself in our continent in order to proclaim the good news.
2.      He wanted to get to the other shore not only geographically but also culturally.  Consequently, he worked in many ways for an evangelization in the native languages. With the Third Council of Lima he provided for catechisms to be compiled and translated into Quechua and Aymara.  He encouraged the clergy to learn the language of their flock in order to administer the sacraments to them in a way they could understand.  Visiting and living with his people, he realized that it was not enough just to be there physically, but to learn to speak the language of others, for only in this way could the Gospel be understood and touch the heart.  How necessary is this vision for us, the pastors of the twenty-first century!  For we have to learn completely new languages, like that, for example, of this, our digital age.  To know the real language of our young people, our families, our children…  As Saint Turibius clearly realized, it is not enough just to be present and occupy space; we have to be able to generate processes in people’s lives, so that the faith can take root and be meaningful.  And to do that, we have to be able to speak their language.  We need to get to the places where new stories and paradigms are being born, to bring the word of Jesus to the very heart of our cities and our peoples.[5]  The evangelization of culture requires us to enter into the heart of culture itself, so that it can be illuminated from within by the Gospel.
3.      Saint Turibius wanted to get to the other shore of charity.  For our patron, there could be no evangelization without charity.  He knew that the supreme form of evangelization is to model in our own lives the self-giving of Jesus Christ, out of love for every man and woman.  The children of God and the children of the devil are revealed in this way: all who do not practise justice are not from God, nor are those who do not love their brothers and sisters (cf. 1 Jn 3:10).  In his visits, he was able to see the abuses and excesses that the original peoples had suffered, and thus he was unafraid, in 1585, to excommunicate the Corregidor of Cajatambo, setting himself against a whole system of corruption and a web of interests which “drew upon him the enmity of many”, including the Viceroy.[6]  Such, we see, is the pastor who knows that spiritual good can never be separated from just material good, and all the more so when the integrity and dignity of persons is at risk.  An episcopal spirit of prophecy unafraid of denouncing abuses and excesses committed against our people.  In this way, Turibius reminds society as a whole, and each community, that charity must always be accompanied by justice.  And that there can be no authentic evangelization that does not point out and denounce every sin against the lives of our brothers and sisters, especially those who are most vulnerable.
4.      He wanted to get to the other shore in the formation of his priests.  He founded the first post-Tridentine seminary in this part of the world, thus encouraging the training of the native clergy.  He realized that it was not enough to visit everywhere and to speak the same language: the Church needed to raise up her own local pastors and thus become a fruitful mother.  To this end, he defended the ordination of the mestizos – a controversial issue at that time – and sought to make others see that if the clergy needed to be different in any area, it had to be by virtue of their holiness and not their racial origin.[7]  This formation was not limited to seminary studies, but continued through the constant visits that he undertook.  There he was able to see firsthand the “state of his priests” and to show his concern for them.   The story goes that on Christmas Eve his sister gave him a shirt that he could wear for the holidays.  That same day he went to visit a priest and, seeing his living conditions, took off the shirt and gave it to him.[8]  He was a pastor who knew his priests.  A pastor who tried to visit them, to accompany them, to encourage them and to admonish them.  He reminded his priests that they were pastors and not shopkeepers, and so they had to care for and defend the indios as their children.[9]  Yet he did not do this from a desk, and so he knew his sheep and they recognized, in his voice, the voice of the good shepherd.
5.      He wanted to get to the other shore of unity.  In an admirable and prophetic way, he worked to open up possibilities for communion and participation among the different members of God’s people.  Saint John Paul II mentioned this when speaking to the bishops in these lands.  He noted that: “The Third Council of Lima was the result of that effort, guided, encouraged and directed by Saint Turibius; it bore fruit in a wealth of unity in faith, pastoral and organizational norms, and useful insights for the desired integration of Latin America”.[10]  We know very well that this unity and consensus emerged from great tensions and conflicts.  We cannot deny tensions and the differences; life is not possible without conflict.  Yet they require us, if we are men and Christians, to face them and to deal with them.  But to deal with them in a spirit of unity, in honest and sincere dialogue, face to face, taking care not to fall into temptation to ignore the past, or to remain prisoners, lacking the vision to discern paths of unity and peace.  It is a source of encouragement, in our journey as an episcopal conference, to know that unity will always prevail over conflict.[11]  Dear brothers, work for unity.  Do not remain prisoners of divisions that create cliques and hamper our vocation to be a sacrament of communion.  Remember: what was attractive about the early church was how they loved one another.  That was – and is and always will be – the best way to evangelize.
6.      The moment came for Saint Turibius to get to the final shore, to the land of which he had a foretaste on every shore he left.  This time, however, he did not leave alone.  As in the picture I spoke of previously, he went to meet the saints surrounded by a great crowd.  He was a pastor who packed “his bags” with names and faces.  They were his passport to heaven.  I would not like to pass over this final chord, the moment when the shepherd surrendered his soul to God.  He did so in the midst of his people, and a native played a song on his chirimíaso that the soul of his pastor would feel at peace.  Brothers, would that when we undertake our final journey, we might have this same experience.  Let us ask the Lord to grant this to us.[12]
And please, do not forget to pray for me.
[1] Address to the Peruvian Bishops (2 February 1985), 3.
[2] Cf. Miracle of Saint Turibius, Vatican Pinacoteca.
[3] JORGE MARIO BERGOGLIO, Homily at Mass, Aparecida (16 May 2007).
[4] Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, 23.
[5] Cf. Ibid., 74.
[6] Cf. ERNESTO ROJAS INGUNZA, El Perú de los Santos, in : KATHY PERALES YSLA (ed.), Cinco Santos del Perú. Vida, obra y tiempo, Lima (2016), 57.
[7] Cf. JOSÉANTONIO BENITO RODRÍGUEZ, Santo Toribio de Mogrovejo, in KATHY PERALES YSLA (ed.), Cinco Santos del Perú. Vida, obra y tiempo, Lima (2016),178.        
[8] Cf. ibid., 180.
[9] Cf. JUAN VILLEGAS, Fiel y evangelizador.  Santo Toribio de Mogrovejo, patrono de los obisbos de América Latina, Montevideo (1984), 22.
[10] Address to the Peruvian Bishops (2 February 1985), 3.
[11] Cf. Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, 226-230.
[12] Cf. JORGE MARIO BERGOGLIO, Homily at Mass, Aparecida (16 May 2007).
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#PopeFrancis "...remember that Jesus is by your side. Do not give up! Do not lose hope!" FULL TEXT Angelus + Video in Peru

(15-22 JANUARY 2018)
"Plaza de Armas" Square (Lima)
Sunday, 21 January 2018

Greeting to Young People before the Angelus
Dear young people, I am pleased to be here with you. These meetings are very important for me, especially in this year of preparation for the Synod on young people. Your faces, your questions and your lives are important for the Church and we need to give them the importance they deserve. We must also have the courage of the many young people of this land who were not afraid to love and risk their lives for Jesus.
Dear friends, how many examples you have! I think of Saint Martin de Porres. Nothing prevented that young man from achieving his dreams, nothing prevented him from spending his life for others, nothing prevented him from loving, and he did so because he had realized that the Lord loved him first. Just as he was: a mulato. He had to face many hardships. In the eyes of others, even his friends, it seemed that he had everything to lose, but he knew how to do one thing that would be the secret of his life: he knew how to trust. To trust in the Lord who loved him. Do you know why? Because the Lord had trusted him first; just as he trusts each of you and will never tire of trusting you. To each of us the Lord has entrusted something and the response is to trust in him. Each of you reflect in your heart: “What has the Lord entrusted me with?” Let everyone reflect: “What is it in my heart that the Lord has entrusted me with?”
You may say that sometimes this is very difficult. I understand that. In those moments, we can think negative thoughts, we can feel overwhelmed by different situations, and it can seem that we are “thrown out of the world-cup”, while they have the upper hand. But it’s not like that, even in the moments in which we’re thrown out, carry on trusting.
There are moments when you can feel powerless to achieve your desires and dreams. We all experience situations like that. In these moments when our faith seems to fade, remember that Jesus is by your side. Do not give up! Do not lose hope! Remember the saints who accompany us from heaven. Go to them, pray and never tire of asking for their intercession. Not only the saints of the past, but also those of the present: this land has many of them, because it is a land of saints. Peru is a land of saints. Ask for help and advice from people you know can give good advice because their faces radiate joy and peace. Let them accompany you as you journey along the path of life.
But there is something else, Jesus wants to see you on the move. He wants to see you achieve your ideals and to be enthusiastic in following his instructions. He will take you along the path of the beatitudes, a path that is not easy but exciting, a path that cannot be travelled alone, it has to be travelled as a team, where each member offers the best of his or her self. Jesus is counting on you as he counted long ago on Saint Rose of Lima, Saint Turibius, Saint Juan Macías, Saint Francisco Solano and so many others. And today he asks if, like them, you are ready to follow him [They reply: “Yes”]. Today, tomorrow, will you be willing to follow him? [They reply: “Yes”]. And within a week? [“Yes”]. Don’t be overly confident. If you are inclined to follow him, ask him to prepare your heart in order to be willing to follow him. Clear?
Dear friends, the Lord looks on you with hope. He never grows discouraged with us. We sometimes become discouraged with a friend because we thought he or she was good but then we saw something which was not so good and we became discouraged and abandoned that person. Jesus is never discouraged, never: “Father, but if you knew the things I do, I say something but I do another, my life is not completely clean”. This being so, Jesus does not become discouraged about you. And now let us have a little silence. Each of you look into your heart to see how your life is, you will see that there are moments with good things and there are moments with things that are not so good. This being so, Jesus is not discouraged about you. And from your heart tell him: “Thank you Jesus, thank you because you came to accompany me when I was still in bad things, thank you Jesus”. Let us all tell him: “Thank you Jesus” [They all repeat this].
I know that we all like to see digitally enhanced photographs, but that only works for pictures; we cannot “photoshop” others, the world, or ourselves. Colour filtering and high definition only function well in video; we can never apply them to our friends. There are pictures that are very nice, but completely fake. Let me assure you that the heart can’t be “photoshopped”, because that’s where authentic love and genuine happiness have to be found and that’s where you show him who you are: how is your heart?
Jesus does not want you to have a “cosmetic” heart. He loves you as you are, and he has a dream for every one of you. Do not forget, he does not get discouraged with us. But if you get discouraged, I invite you to take a look at the Bible and remember the kind of friends Jesus chose.
Moses, he was not articulate; Abraham, an old man; Jeremiah, very young; Zacchaeus, a short man; the disciples, who fell asleep when Jesus told them they should pray; Mary Magdalene, a public sinner, Paul, a persecutor of Christians; Peter, who denied him, and was then made Pope, yet he denied Jesus… and we could go on with the list. Jesus wants us as we are, just as he wanted his friends, with their defects, desiring to correct them yes, but as they were, that’s how the Lord loves you. Don’t put on any make-up, don’t put any make-up on the heart, but show yourself to Jesus as you are so that he can help you to move forwards in life.
When Jesus looks at us, he does not think about how perfect we are, but about all the love we have in our hearts to give him and to follow him. That is the important thing for him, that is the greatest thing, “how much love do I have in my heart?” And the response I want it to be also directed to our Mother: “Mother, beloved Blessed Virgin, look at the love I have in my heart, is it little? Is it much? I do not know if it is love”.
Be assured that she will accompany you at every moment of your life, at all the crossroads of your journey, especially at those times when you have to make important decisions. Do not become discouraged, move forwards, all together, because life is worth living with our heads held high. May God bless you.
We are in the Plaza Mayor of Lima, a small place in a relatively small city of the world, but the world is much bigger and full of cities and peoples, and is also full of problems, full of wars. Today I have heard very concerning news coming from the Democratic Republic of Congo; let us think of that country. In these moments, from this Plaza and with all those young people, I ask the authorities, those responsible and everyone within that beloved nation, to make the greatest commitment and effort to avoid every form of violence and to find solutions that favour the common good. Altogether, in silence, let us pray for this intention for our brothers and sisters of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
[Angelus Prayer and Apostolic Blessing]

Good bye!
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#PopeFrancis "Through your prayer, night and day, you bring before God the lives of so many ..." FULL TEXT to Nuns

Pope Francis addresses contemplative nuns in Peru: Full text
Pope Francis addressed some 500 contemplative nuns from different orders during mid-morning prayer at the Shrine of Our Lord of the Miracles in Lima. Here is the full text of his homily:
Homily of the Holy FatherMid-Day Prayer with Contemplative Women Religious
Shrine of the Lord of Miracles, Lima
Sunday, 21 January 2018
Dear Sisters from different monasteries of contemplative life:
How good it is to be here in this Shrine of the Lord of Miracles, visited so often by Peruvians, to ask his grace so that he will show us his closeness and mercy!  He is “the light that guides, that illumines us with his divine love”.  Seeing you here, I get the impression that you took advantage of this visit to get out for some fresh air!  Mother Soledad, I thank you for your words of welcome, and I thank all of you, who “from the silence of the cloister walk ever by my side”.
We have listened to the words of Saint Paul and been reminded that we have received the Spirit of filial adoption that makes us children of God (cf. Rom 8:15-16).  Those few words sum up the richness of every Christian vocation: the joy of knowing we are God’s children.  This is the experience that nourishes our lives, that seeks always to be a pleasing response to God’s love.  How important it is to renew this joy day by day!
A privileged path that you have for renewing this conviction is the life of prayer, both communal and individual.  This is the heart of your contemplative life, and the means of cultivating the experience of love that sustains our faith and, indeed as Mother Soledad rightly said, a prayer that is always missionary.
Missionary prayer makes us one with our brothers and sisters in whatever situations they find themselves, and asks that love and hope will never fail them.  This is what Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus said: “I understood that it is love alone which prompts the members of the Church to act and, if there is no love, neither would the Apostles proclaim the Gospel, nor would the martyrs spill their blood.  I recognized clearly and I was certain that love subsumes in itself all vocations, that love is everything, encompassing all times and places, in a word, that love is eternal… in the heart of the Church, who is my Mother, I will be love”.[1]
To be love!  This means being able to stand alongside the suffering of so many of our brothers and sisters, and to say with the Psalmist: “In my distress I called upon the Lord; the Lord answered me and set me free” (Ps 117:5).  In this way, your cloistered life can attain a missionary and universal outreach and play “a fundamental role in the life of the Church.  You pray and intercede for our many brothers and sisters who are prisoners, migrants, refugees and victims of persecution.  Your prayers of intercession embrace the many families experiencing difficulties, the unemployed, the poor, the sick, and those struggling with addiction, to mention just a few of the more urgent situations.  You are like those who brought the paralytic to the Lord for healing.  Through your prayer, night and day, you bring before God the lives of so many of our brothers and sisters who for various reasons cannot come to him to experience his healing mercy, even as he patiently waits for them.  By your prayers, you can heal the wounds of many”.[2]
For this very reason, we can state that cloistered life neither closes nor shrinks our hearts, but rather widens them in our relationship with the Lord, making them capable of feeling in a new way the pain, the suffering, the frustration and the misfortune of so many of our brothers and sisters who are victims of today’s “throwaway culture”.  May intercession for those in need be the hallmark of your prayer.  And whenever possible, help them not only by prayer, but also by concrete service.
The prayer of supplication that takes place in your monasteries is attuned to the Heart of Jesus, which pleads to the Father that we may all be one, so that the world will believe (cf. Jn17:21).  How much we need unity in the Church!  Today and always!  United in faith.  United by hope.  United by love.  In the unity that wells up from our communion with Christ, who unites us to the Father in the Spirit, and, in the Eucharist, unites us with one another in that great mystery which is the Church.  I ask you, please, to pray constantly for unity in this beloved Church in Peru. 
Strive to grow in the fraternal life, so that every monastery can be a beacon of light in the midst of disunity and division.  Help bear prophetic witness that this is possible.  May all who draw near to you have a foretaste of the blessedness of the fraternal charity so essential to the consecrated life and so necessary in today’s world and in our communities.
When we live our vocation faithfully, our life becomes a proclamation of God’s love.  I ask you never to stop giving that witness.  In this Church of the Discalced Carmelite Nazarenes, I readily recall the words of the great spiritual teacher, Saint Teresa of Jesus: “If you lose your guide, who is the good Jesus, you will not get the journey right…  For the same Lord says he is the way; the Lord also says he is the light, and that no one can come to the Father except through him”.[3]
Dear sisters, the Church needs you.  Be beacons through your lives of fidelity, and keep pointing to the One who is the way, and the truth and the life, to the one Lord who brings us fulfilment and grants us life in abundance.[4]
Pray for the Church, for priests and bishops, for consecrated men and women, for families, for those who suffer, for those who harm others, for those who exploit their brothers and sisters.  And do not forget, please, to pray for me.
[1] Autobiographical manuscripts: Letter to Sister Marie of the Sacred Heart (8 September 1896), Ms. B [3v.].
[2] Apostolic Constitution Vultum Dei Quaerere on women’s contemplative life (29 June 2016), 16.
[3] The Interior Castle, VI, ch. 7, no. 6.
[4] Cf. Apostolic Constitution Vultum Dei Quaerere on women’s contemplative life (29 June 2016), 6.
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Wow Great New Movie on Mary's Apparitions in #Garabandal - FULL Trailer Video

A new movie about Mary's Apparitions in Garabandal has been produced and is receiving great reviews here is the synopsis by the Website.
About: June 18, 1961. In a small village in Northern Spain, San Sebastián de Garabandal, four girls, Conchita, Jacinta, Mari Loli, and Mari Cruz, claim that St. Michael the Archangel has just appeared to them. A few days later, on July 2, 1961 they receive a visit from Our Lady of Mount Carmel. After this first encounter, there are more than two thousand visits from this heavenly Lady. The village’s parish priest, Fr. Valentín, and the Civil Guard brigadier, Mr. Juan Álvarez Seco, suddenly become protagonists in an overwhelming event. They must struggle to find where the truth lies, while confronting a perplexed hierarchy and facing an ever growing multitude of people who arrive at the village in the search of answers.
INFO and where to See it:

RIP Fr. Juliano Absalom - Death of Priest in Motorcycle Accident in Malawi

Death has been announced of Father Juliano Absalom of Dedza Diocese after being involved in motorbike accident, faceofmalawi can reveal. Absalom died in the early hours of Friday at Daeayang Luke Hospital.
 “The Diocese of Dedza has lost Fr. Juliano Abisalom at Daeayang Luke Hospital afew minutes ago. He was involved in a motor bike accident and was taken to Mua and later transferred to Daeyang. Lord receive your servant,” reads the statement in part. The death of Father Absalom comes barely hours after the death of Father Tony Mukomba of the Archdiocese of Blantyre.
Text edited from FaceofMalawi

Sunday Mass Online : 3rd Ordinary T. - Sun. January 21, 2018 - #Eucharist - Readings and Video

Third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 68

Reading 1JON 3:1-5, 10

The word of the LORD came to Jonah, saying:
"Set out for the great city of Nineveh,
and announce to it the message that I will tell you."
So Jonah made ready and went to Nineveh,
according to the LORD'S bidding.
Now Nineveh was an enormously large city;
it took three days to go through it.
Jonah began his journey through the city,
and had gone but a single day's walk announcing,
"Forty days more and Nineveh shall be destroyed, "
when the people of Nineveh believed God;
they proclaimed a fast
and all of them, great and small, put on sackcloth.

When God saw by their actions how they turned from their evil way,
he repented of the evil that he had threatened to do to them;
he did not carry it out.

Responsorial PsalmPS 25:4-5, 6-7, 8-9

R. (4a) Teach me your ways, O Lord.
Your ways, O LORD, make known to me;
teach me your paths,
Guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my savior.
R. Teach me your ways, O Lord.
Remember that your compassion, O LORD,
and your love are from of old.
In your kindness remember me,
because of your goodness, O LORD.
R. Teach me your ways, O Lord.
Good and upright is the LORD;
thus he shows sinners the way.
He guides the humble to justice
and teaches the humble his way.
R. Teach me your ways, O Lord.

Reading 111 COR 7:29-31

I tell you, brothers and sisters, the time is running out.
From now on, let those having wives act as not having them,
those weeping as not weeping,
those rejoicing as not rejoicing,
those buying as not owning, 
those using the world as not using it fully.
For the world in its present form is passing away.

Alleluia MK 1:15

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent and believe in the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMK 1:14-20

After John had been arrested,
Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God:
"This is the time of fulfillment.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the gospel."

As he passed by the Sea of Galilee,
he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea;
they were fishermen.
Jesus said to them,
"Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men."
Then they abandoned their nets and followed him.
He walked along a little farther
and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John.
They too were in a boat mending their nets.
Then he called them.
So they left their father Zebedee in the boat
along with the hired men and followed him.

Novena to #StAgnes and Prayers to SHARE - Patron of #Engaged #Couples and #Chastity

Novena to St. Agnes for unmarried couples. St. Agnes, although you were only a child, you believed that Jesus was always with you; help us to remember that he is also with us and to remain true to his presence. St Agnes, you refused to give up your faith, help us to be proud of our faith to love it, to be strong in it, and to give witness to it daily. St. Agnes, patron saint of unmarried couples, watch over ________ and _______ keep them strong in their faith, committed to chastity and virginity until marriage. Be with them and always pray for them. Amen Say 1 Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be for 9 days
Other Novena Prayer to St. Agnes
O singular example of virtue, glorious Saint Agnes, by the living faith which animated thee from thy tenderest years, and rendered thee so pleasing to God that thou didst merit the martyr's crown: obtain for us the grace to keep our holy faith inviolate within us, and to profess ourselves Christians sincerely in word and work; may our open confession of Jesus before men cause Him to bear a favorable witness to us before His eternal Father.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be.
O invincible Martyr, Saint Agnes most renowned, by thy confidence in God's help, when, being condemned by the impious Roman prefect to see the lily of thy purity stained and trampled in the mire, thou didst not despair, still trusting firmly in the God who giveth His angels charge over them that trust in Him: we beseech thee by thine intercession to obtain for us from Almighty God the forgiveness of all our sins and the sure confidence that He will bestow upon us life everlasting and the means necessary to merit it.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be.
O courageous maiden, Saint Agnes most pure, by the burning love with which thy heart was on fire, and which preserved thee from harm in the midst of the flames of passion and of the stake, where the enemies of Jesus Christ sought to destroy thee: obtain for us from Almighty God that every unclean flame may be extinguished in us and only that fire, which Jesus Christ came to enkindle upon the earth, may burn within us; so that, after spending a blameless life in the practice of this fair virtue, we shall be worthy to have a share in the glory thou didst merit by the purity of thy heart and by thy martyrdom.
Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be.

(Indulgence of 300 days) 

Prayer in Honor of St. Agnes

O Sweetest Lord Jesus Christ, source of all virtues, lover of virgins, most powerful conqueror of demons, most severe extirpator of vice! deign to cast Thine eyes upon my weakness, and through the intercession of Mary most blessed, Mother and Virgin, and of Thy beloved spouse St. Agnes, glorious virgin and martyr, grant me the aid of Thy heavenly grace, in order that I may learn to despise all earthly things, and to love what is heavenly; to oppose vice and to be proof against temptation; to walk firmly in the path of virtue, not to seek honors, to shun pleasures, to bewail my past offenses, to keep far from the occasions of evil, to keep free from bad habits, to seek the company of the good, and persevere in righteousness, so that, by the assistance of Thy grace, I may deserve the crown of eternal life, together with St. Agnes and all the saints, forever and ever, in Thy kingdom. Amen.
(Indulgence 100 days, Pius IX, 1854) 

Saint January 21 : St. Agnes : #Engaged couples; #Chastity; #Gardeners; #Girls; Rape victims; virgins

Feast Day:January 21
Major Shrine::Church of Sant'Agnese fuori le mura and the Church of Sant'Agnese in Agone, both in Rome
Patron of:Betrothed couples; chastity; Children of Mary; Colegio Capranica of Rome; crops; gardeners; Girl Scouts; girls; rape victims; virgins
Of all the virgin martyrs of Rome none was held in such high honour by the primitive church, since the fourth century, as St. Agnes. In the ancient Roman calendar of the feasts of the martyrs (Depositio Martyrum), incorporated into the collection of Furius Dionysius Philocalus, dating from 354 and often reprinted, e.g. in Ruinart [Acta Sincera Martyrum (ed. Ratisbon, 1859), 63 sqq.], her feast is assigned to 21 January, to which is added a detail as to the name of the road (Via Nomentana) near which her grave was located. The earliest sacramentaries give the same date for her feast, and it is on this day that the Latin Church even now keeps her memory sacred. Since the close of the fourth century the Fathers of the Church and Christian poets have sung her praises and extolled her virginity and heroism under torture. It is clear, however, from the diversity in the earliest accounts that there was extant at the end of the fourth century no accurate and reliable narrative, at least in writing, concerning the details of her martyrdom. On one point only is there mutual agreement, viz., the youth of the Christian heroine. St. Ambrose gives her age as twelve (De Virginibus, I, 2; P.L., XVI, 200-202: Haec duodecim annorum martyrium fecisse traditur), St. Augustine as thirteen (Agnes puella tredecim annorum; Sermo cclxxiii, 6, P.L., XXXVIII, 1251), which harmonizes well with the words of Prudentius: Aiunt jugali vix habilem toro (Peristephanon, Hymn xiv, 10 in Ruinart, Act. Sinc., ed cit. 486). Damasus depicts her as hastening to martyrdom from the lap of her mother or nurse (Nutricis gremium subito liquisse puella; in St. Agneten, 3, ed. Ihm, Damasi epigrammata, Leipzig, 1895, 43, n. 40). We have no reason whatever for doubting this tradition. It indeed explains very well the renown of the youthful martyr. Catholic Encyclopedia