Thursday, November 22, 2018

Saint November 23 : Blessed Miguel Pro - Viva Christo Rey - #Martyr for #ChristtheKing



Miguel Pro was born January 13, 1891, at Guadalupe Zacatecas, Mexico.

In 1909, twenty-year-old Miguel Augustin Pro joined the Jesuits as a novice in Mexico. A year later a revolution erupted and by 1914 the Jesuits were forced to flee. Via Texas, California, Nicaragua, and Spain, Miguel received his seminary training en route to Belgium, where he was ordained in 1925.
The Jesuits sent Padre Pro to Mexico City in 1926, hoping a return home might relieve the priest’s chronic stomach ailment. Just twenty-three days after Padre Pro arrived, President Calles banned all public worship. Since he was not known as a priest, Padre Pro went about clandestinely—sometimes in disguise—celebrating Mass, distributing communion, hearing confessions, and anointing the sick. He also did as much as he could to relieve the material suffering of the poor. In a letter he gave this faith-filled account:
We carry on like slaves. Jesus help me! There isn’t time to breathe, and I am up to my eyebrows in this business of feeding those who have nothing. And they are many—those with nothing. I assure you that I spin like a top from here to there with such luck as is the exclusive privilege of petty thieves. It doesn’t even faze me to receive such messages as: “The X Family reports that they are twelve members and their pantry is empty. Their clothing is falling off them in pieces, three are sick in bed and there isn’t even water.” As a rule my purse is as dry as Calles’s soul, but it isn’t worth worrying since the Procurator of Heaven is generous.
People give me valuable objects to raffle off, something worth ten pesos that I can sell for forty. Once I was walking along with a woman’s purse that was quite cute (the purse not the woman) when I met a wealthy woman all dolled up.
“What do you have there?”
“A lady’s purse worth twenty-five pesos. You can have it for fifty pesos which I beg you to send to such-and-such a family.”
I see God’s hand so palpably in everything that almost—almost I fear they won’t kill me in these adventures. That will be a fiasco for me who sighs to go to heaven and start tossing off arpeggios on the guitar with my guardian angel.
In November 1927, a bomb was tossed at Calles’s car from an auto previously owned by one of Miguel’s two brothers. All three brothers were rounded up and condemned to death. The youngest was pardoned, but Padre Pro and his brother Humberto were executed by a firing squad. Calles had news photographers present, expecting the Pros to die cowardly. But Padre Pro refused the blindfold and welcomed the bullets with his arms extended in the form of a cross, crying out, “Viva Cristo Rey!” Although Calles outlawed any public demonstration, thousands of Mexicans defiantly lined the streets, honoring the martyr as he was carried in procession to his grave.
Once while walking with Concepcion, his favorite sister, Miguel noticed in a window an especially gaudy statue of the Virgin. She thought it was “hideous.” To tease her, he ran to the owner’s door and knocked. “Hello,” he said, “my sister loves your beautiful statue. Will you sell it?”
“Sorry,” was the answer. “That madonna is a family treasure.”
Quick-witted and lighthearted Miguel played similar practical jokes all his life. He also played them in death. President Calles thought executing Padre Pro publicly would demoralize Catholics, but it had the opposite effect. Miguel even promised to joke in heaven. “If I meet any long-faced saints there,” he said, “I will cheer them up with a Mexican hat dance!”
Excerpt from Voices of the Saints by Bert Ghezzi.

Pope Francis World Youth Day Message "May Our Lady be with you on this pilgrimage..." FULL Official Text + Video for #WYD2019

[PANAMA, 22 - 27 JANUARY 2019]

Dear young people,
World Youth Day is fast approaching. It will be held in Panama in January and the theme is Mary’s response to God’s call, “I am the servant of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word” (Lk 1:38).
Her words are a brave and generous “yes”. It is the positive reply of one who understands the secret of vocation ‒ to go beyond oneself and place oneself at the service of others. Our lives only find meaning in service to God and to other people.
There are many young people, both believers and nonbelievers, who when they come to the end of a stage in their studies, feel a desire to do something for those who are suffering. This is a strength in young people, a strength that all of you possess. It is a strength that can change the world. It is a revolution that can overturn the powerful forces at work in our world. It is the “revolution” of service.

To be at the service of others does not only mean to be ready for action. It means also to be in conversation with God with an attitude of listening, just like Mary. She listened to what the angel said to her and then she responded. It is by relating to God in the silence of our hearts that we discover our identity and the vocation to which God is calling us. It can be expressed in different ways: in marriage, in consecrated life, in the priesthood… All these are ways of following Jesus. The important thing is to discover what God wants from us and to be brave enough to say “yes”.
Mary was a happy woman, and this is because she replied generously to God and opened her heart to God’s plan for her. When God has a proposition for us, like the one he had for Mary, it is not intended to extinguish our dreams, but to ignite our aspirations. Propositions like this are meant to make our lives fruitful and produce many smiles and happy hearts. To respond to God positively is to take a first step towards being happy and towards making many people happy.
Dear young people, take courage, enter within yourselves and say to God: “What do you want from me?” Allow God to answer you. Then you will see how your life is transformed and filled with joy.
With the upcoming World Youth Day in our sights, I invite you all to prepare for it by following and taking part in the initiatives that are happening. They will help you on your path towards this goal. May Our Lady be with you on this pilgrimage, and may her example encourage you to be brave and generous in your response.

Have a good journey on your way to Panama! And, please, do not forget to pray for me. See you soon.

Wow 5 Things to SHARE about the 1st American Thanksgiving it was a Mass! - #HappyThanksgiving to SHARE

A historical reality is that the first “thanksgiving” meal in the United States was celebrated by Spanish settlers, in what became Florida. This was explained by Historian Dr. Michael Gannon as he explained was occurred on September 8, 1565.
1. “When the first Spanish settlers landed in what is now St. Augustine on September 8, 1565, to build a settlement, their first act was to hold a religious service to thank God for the safe arrival of the Spanish. FIRST they Celebrated the Holy Mass, Father Francisco Lopez, the Chaplin of the Spanish ships, insisted that the natives from the Timucua tribe be fed with the Spanish settlers. This was the very first Thanksgiving and the first Thanksgiving meal in the United States.
2. The Spaniards, with food that they brought with them on the ship, made the communal meal. History tells us that  the meal would probably involved salted pork, garbanzo beans, bread and red wine.

3. This account of the first “thanksgiving” was found in Father Francisco’s memoirs. He wrote, “the feast day [was] observed . . . after Mass, ‘the Adelantado [Menendez] had the Indians fed and dined himself.’”
4. The feast celebrated by the Spaniards was that of the Blessed Virgin Mary’s birthday, on  September 8. The meal “may have also included … If the Timucua contributed, it would likely have been with corn, fresh fish, berries, or beans.”
5. Before the Mass was celebrated, “Father Francisco López, the fleet chaplain…came ashore and met Menéndez holding a cross… Menéndez came on land, knelt and kissed the cross.”
The word Eucharist another word for the Mass comes from the Greek meaning “thanksgiving”)
HAPPY THANKSGIVING and Remember to THANK GOD with your Family!

#BreakingNews Cardinal Charles Maung Bo chosen as Leader of Asian Bishops' Conference - #AsianBishops' Head from #Myanmar

Cardinal Charles Maung Bo was chosed to lead Asian bishops in the Federation of Asian Bishops' Conferences. The mandate of the current holder, the archbishop of Mumbai Card Gracias, expires at the end of December; Myanmar’s first cardinal will take over as of 1st January 2019.
 – Card Oswald Gracias, archbishop of Mumbai and president of the Indian Bishops' Conference (CBCI).
 welcomed the election of Card Charles Maung Bo, archbishop of Yangon (Myanmar), as his successor at head of Asia’s Catholic bishops.
 FABC Acting Assistant Secretary General Fr William LaRousse announced Card Bo’s appointment yesterday, The election took place on 16 November in Bangkok (Thailand), during a meeting of the FABC Central Committee. Card Gracias also announced a “plenary Asian Council of Bishops to discuss different matters about the possibilities of us being at the service of the country, at the service of the people and at the service of the Church in Asia” in 2020.

Biography from Vatican News va

Card. Bo was born on 29 October 1948 in Monhla, a village in the Archdiocese of Mandalay.  After studying at the Nazareth Aspirantate of the Salesians Don Bosco in Anisakan, Pyin Oo Lwin, from 1962 to 1976, he made his temporary vows on 24 May 1970, followed by perpetual vows on 10 March 1976.
After his priestly ordination as a Salesian in Lashio, Shan State on 9 April 1976,  he served as pastor in Loihkam (1976-1981) and Lashio (1981-1983).  From 1983 to 1985, he taught in the seminary of Anisakan.
Card. Bo served as Apostolic Administrator in Lashio from 1985 to 1986 and its Apostolic Prefect from 1986 to 1990.  When the prefecture was elevated to the status of a diocese on 7 July 1990, he was appointed its first bishop.  He was consecrated bishop on 16 December that year.
St. John Paul transferred him the Diocese of Pathein in Ayeyarwaddy Region on 24 May, 1996., but he continued as Apostolic Administrator of Lashio until November 1998.  On May 15, 2003he was appointed Archbishop of Yangon.  From 2000 to 2006 he headed the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Myanmar. 
Pope Francis made him Myanmar’s first cardinal at the consistory of 14 February 2015 in the Vatican.   Subsequently, he was appointed a member of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, Pontifical Council for Culture, and Secretariat of Communication in the Vatican.
FABC brings together 19 bishops’ conferences of Asia as full members and 8 associate members. The federation’s purpose is to foster among its members solidarity and co-responsibility for the welfare of Church and society in Asia. The decisions of the Federation are without juridical binding force; their acceptance is an expression of collegial responsibility.

Pope Francis "...constantly seek the face of God and to remain faithful to your mission of being the praying heart of the Church" Pro Orantibus - FULL Official TEXT + Video

[St John Lateran, 21 November 2018]

Dear brothers and sisters!
On the liturgical feast of the Presentation of Mary, today we celebrate, in its 65th edition, the Pro Orantibus Day. This year the Day, celebrated in the Pontifical Lateran University and in the Papal Basilica of Saint John Lateran, is dedicated to the presentation of two documents that directly concern female contemplative life: the Apostolic Constitution Vultum Dei quaerere and the Implementing Instruction Cor orans.
On this occasion I am grateful to greet all of you participating in the Day. Through you, I greet all the men and women religious who follow Christ in the contemplative life, seeking the face of God, and who participate in the Church’s mission as her praying heart.
Thank you for responding to the invitation to take part in this meeting and this celebration, addressed to you, with my encouragement, by the Cardinal Prefect and the Archbishop Secretary. And I also thank the Pro Monialibus Secretariat, which prepares this Day with great care and takes care of the sisters with special needs in the Villa della Meditazione and helps the monasteries in difficulty.
I would like to take advantage of this Day to express to you once again the great appreciation of the Church for your form of life. What would become of the Church without the contemplative life? What would become of the weaker members of the Church who find in you a support to continue the journey? What would happen to the Church and the world without the beacons that signal the port to those who are lost on the high seas, without the torches that illuminate the dark night we are going through, without the sentinels announcing the new day when it is still night? Thank you, sisters and contemplative brothers because you offer all this for the world: support for the weak, beacons, torches and sentinels (cf. Apostolic Constitution Vultum Dei quaerere, I, 6). Thank you for enriching us with so many fruits of holiness, mercy and grace (cf. ibid., I, 5).
With the whole Church, I also pray that the Lord may “be ever present and active in your heart and transform you entirely in Him, the ultimate aim of the contemplative life, and may your communities or fraternities become true schools of contemplation and prayer. The world and the Church need you. … This should be your prophetic witness” (ibid., I, 36).
In this circumstance I invite you to take seriously the challenge of formation, which, as you well know, consists of “a path of gradual identification with the attitude of Christ towards the Father” (Saint John Paul II, Apostolic Exhortation Vita Consecrata, 65). This is why, since formation clearly continues throughout a lifetime, it is also necessary to accept with responsibility that it is a slow process, for which it is important not to be hasty. In this context, I also remind you of the importance of discernment and of the spiritual and vocational accompaniment of candidates, without ever allowing oneself to be filled with anxiety over numbers and efficiency (cf CIVCSVA, Ripartire da Cristo, 19 May 2002, 18) as well as the formation of formators and sisters called to provide the service of authority.
In order for your contemplative life to be meaningful for the Church and for today’s world, it is necessary to focus on a formation that is adapted to the needs of the present moment: an integral formation, personalized and well-accompanied. Such formation will nurture and safeguard your creative fidelity to the charism received, both of each of the sisters and of the whole community.
Dear sisters and brothers, may this day spent in fraternity bring light and life to your communities; may the Virgin Mary, model of contemplation, teach you to constantly seek the face of God and to remain faithful to your mission of being the praying heart of the Church. I impart my Apostolic Blessing to you with affection and ask you, please, to pray for me.
From the Vatican, 21 November 2018
Memory of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Pro Orantibus Day


#Novena to Saint Cecilia - Prayers to SHARE to the Patroness of #Music - #StCecilia

Saint Cecilia And An Angel by Orazio Gentileschi and Giovanni Lanfranco
NOVENA PRAYER (Novenas are usually said for 9 days, however this prayer can be said at any time) 
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.Lord, have mercy on us. Christ hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven, Have mercy on us.God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.God the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us.Holy Trinity, one God, Have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, Pray for us. (repeat after each line)St. Cecilia,
St. Cecilia, wise virgin,
St. Cecilia, whose heart burned with the fire of divine love,
St. Cecilia, apostle by your zeal and charity,
St. Cecilia, who converted your spouse and procured for him the crown of martyrdom,
St. Cecilia, who by your pleadings moved the hearts of pagans, and brought them into the true Church,
St. Cecilia, who did unceasingly see your guardian angel by your side,
St. Cecilia, who mingled your voice with the celestial harmonies of the virgins,
St. Cecilia, who by your melodious accents celebrated the praises of Jesus,
St. Cecilia, illustrious martyr of Jesus Christ,
St. Cecilia, who during three days suffered most excruciating torments,
St. Cecilia, consolation of the afflicted,
St. Cecilia, protectress of all who invoke you,
St. Cecilia, patroness of holy canticles,
St. Cecilia, special patroness and advocate of all singers, musicians, authors, and students,
We salute you, O Virgin, who gave your blood for the defense and faith of Jesus Christ.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord.Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord.Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.
God glorified St. Cecilia, And He crowned her virtues.
Let us pray, O Eternal God, who gave us in the person of St. Cecilia, a powerful protectress, grant that after having faithfully passed our days like herself, in innocence and holiness, we may one day attain the land of beatitude, where in concert with her, we may praise you and bless you forevermore in eternity. Amen.
Let the deep organ swell the lay
In honor of this festive day.
Let the harmonious choirs proclaim
Cecilia’s ever blessed name.
Let the harmonious choirs proclaim
Cecilia’s ever blessed name.
Cecilia with a two-fold crown,
Adorned in heaven we pray look down,
Upon thy fervent children here
And harken to their humble prayer.
Let the harmonious choirs proclaim
Cecilia’s ever blessed name.
Novena Source - Nashville Dominican Nuns
Say 1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary, and 1 Glory Be each day of the Novena.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Thursday November 22, 2018 - #Eucharist

Memorial of Saint Cecilia, Virgin and Martyr
Lectionary: 500

Reading 1RV 5:1-10

I, John, saw a scroll in the right hand of the one who sat on the throne.
It had writing on both sides and was sealed with seven seals.
Then I saw a mighty angel who proclaimed in a loud voice,
"Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?"
But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth
was able to open the scroll or to examine it.
I shed many tears because no one was found worthy
to open the scroll or to examine it.
One of the elders said to me, "Do not weep.
The lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David, has triumphed,
enabling him to open the scroll with its seven seals."

Then I saw standing in the midst of the throne
and the four living creatures and the elders
a Lamb that seemed to have been slain.
He had seven horns and seven eyes;
these are the seven spirits of God sent out into the whole world.
He came and received the scroll from the right hand
of the one who sat on the throne.
When he took it,
the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders
fell down before the Lamb.
Each of the elders held a harp and gold bowls filled with incense,
which are the prayers of the holy ones.
They sang a new hymn:

"Worthy are you to receive the scroll
and break open its seals,
for you were slain and with your Blood you purchased for God
those from every tribe and tongue, people and nation.
You made them a kingdom and priests for our God,
and they will reign on earth."

Responsorial PsalmPS 149:1B-2, 3-4, 5-6A AND 9B

R. (Rev. 5:10) The Lamb has made us a kingdom of priests to serve our God.
R. Alleluia.
Sing to the LORD a new song
of praise in the assembly of the faithful.
Let Israel be glad in their maker,
let the children of Zion rejoice in their king.
R. The Lamb has made us a kingdom of priests to serve our God.
R. Alleluia.
Let them praise his name in the festive dance,
let them sing praise to him with timbrel and harp.
For the LORD loves his people,
and he adorns the lowly with victory.
R. The Lamb has made us a kingdom of priests to serve our God.
R. Alleluia.
Let the faithful exult in glory;
let them sing for joy upon their couches;
Let the high praises of God be in their throats.
This is the glory of all his faithful. Alleluia.
R. The Lamb has made us a kingdom of priests to serve our God.
R. Alleluia.

AlleluiaPS 95:8

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
If today you hear his voice,
harden not your hearts.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelLK 19:41-44

As Jesus drew near Jerusalem,
he saw the city and wept over it, saying,
"If this day you only knew what makes for peace–
but now it is hidden from your eyes.
For the days are coming upon you
when your enemies will raise a palisade against you;
they will encircle you and hem you in on all sides.
They will smash you to the ground and your children within you,
and they will not leave one stone upon another within you
because you did not recognize the time of your visitation."