Sunday, January 20, 2019

Pope Francis Message to Indigenous Youth " May your action, the consciousness of belonging to your peoples, be a reaction against this culture of waste..."


[Soloy-Panama, 17-21 January 2019]

Dear young people,

At the end of the World Youth Day in Krakow, in July 2016, I told the young volunteers: "We remember our past to build hope with courage". And it is the motto that you have chosen for this World Meeting of Indigenous Youth that brought you from 17 to 21 January this year (pre-WYD day), in Soloy, Comarca Ngäbe-Buglé, Diocese of David, in Panama .

I congratulate you because it is the first time that a pre-GMG meeting is organized specifically for the young people of the indigenous peoples, of the original peoples, at world level. An initiative for which I would like to thank the Indigenous Pastoral Section of the Episcopal Conference of Panama, supported by CELAM.

Dear young people, I invite you to ensure that this meeting, which brings together hundreds of young people from different original peoples, serves to reflect and celebrate your faith in Jesus Christ, starting from the millenary richness of your original cultures. I urge you to make it an opportunity to respond to the invitation made on other occasions to you young people to be grateful for the history of your peoples and courageous in the face of the challenges that surround you, to move forward with hope in the construction of the another world possible. Return to the cultures of the origins. Take charge of the roots, because from the roots comes the force that will make you grow, flourish and bear fruit. Furthermore, it must be a way to show the indigenous face of our Church within WYD and to affirm our commitment to protect the Common Home and to collaborate in the construction of another possible, fairer and more humane world.

Without a doubt, the themes that, according to the agenda, will be the object of your reflection, will stimulate the search for answers, from the Gospel perspective, to many and scandalous situations of marginalization, exclusion, waste and impoverishment to which millions of young people they are condemned, especially the youth of the original peoples, in the world. May your action, the consciousness of belonging to your peoples, be a reaction against this culture of waste, against this culture of root oblivion, projected towards an increasingly liquid, gaseous, groundless future.

Boys and girls, take charge of your cultures! Take charge of your roots! But do not stop there. From those roots, grow, flower, fruit. A poet used to say that "what the tree has in bloom, comes from what it has buried". The roots. But roots facing the future. Project in the future. This is the challenge that awaits you today.

It will be a pleasure for me to meet you in Panama. And waiting for that moment to come, I wish you the best success in your meeting and I give you my blessing.

Jatuaida, Jamorogodre.

God bless you!

#BreakingNews New Video Shows 2 Sides of Story in Controversial Confrontation between Natives and Teens

During the March for Life in Washington, DC, USA a confrontation occurred between some young teens and some Native Indians. Social media was quick to condemn a group of teens from a Catholic high school. However, new video (see below) shows that the Native group approached the teens. The Diocese and the Covington High School have released a joint statement (Full Text):


We condemn the actions of the Covington Catholic High School students towards Nathan Phillips specifically, and Native Americans in general, Jan. 18, after the March for Life, in Washington, D.C. We extend our deepest apologies to Mr. Phillips. This behavior is opposed to the Church’s teachings on the dignity and respect of the human person.

The matter is being investigated and we will take appropriate action, up to and including expulsion.

We know this incident also has tainted the entire witness of the March for Life and express our most sincere apologies to all those who attended the March and all those who support the pro-life movement.

The Diocese of Covington and Covington Catholic High School.

However, a parent/chaperone replied with another statement: 
“Regarding the Covington Catholic High School story: The information being conveyed in the media is untrue. The CCH boys were waiting at the Lincoln Memorial for their buses to show up, after participating in the March for Life. While standing there, first they were verbally assaulted by a group of guys who used abusive, foul language, and in particular targeted an African-American CCH student. The CCH boys did not retaliate or respond, other than to start singing some of their school chants in order to drown the guys out. The guys left, and while the boys were still hyped up from doing their school chants, the gentleman in question walked into the middle of the CCH boys, walked up and faced the boy in question, and began banging his drum and chanting. The boy and his friends didn’t quite know what to do. The boy in question tried to politely listen to him. Some of the others danced a bit and clapped along. Then after 5 minutes or so, the gentleman left. That’s it. No one blocked him, touched him, or even said anything negative to him. The boy in question didn’t laugh at him, turn his back on him, or any such thing. No one chanted “build the wall.” The boy in question was just trying to listen to him, not “smirk,” “mock him,” or any similar thing. No one tried to intimidate the gentleman. He intentionally walked into the middle of the CCH boys and started his drum/chant in front of the boy. Now this boy, who is all of 16 years old, and the rest of the CCH boys, are being vilified across the nation. This is ridiculous. There are videos circulating that support the foregoing. But of course there are people who will instead choose to believe the stories being circulated in the media.”
 New Video has emerged, in it, one of the Catholic boys says, “Does anybody know what he’s doing? Does anybody know what’s going on here.”
One of the Indians with Nathan Phillips of the Omaha Tribe shouts: “White people, go back to Europe. This is not your land.” He curses the students. He goes on: “You’re being a white man about it. That’s all you know how to do.”
Then, at the 4:40 mark, members of a cult called the Black Hebrews starts yelling at the boys saying “your president is a homosexual.” : “You give faggots rights!”
Please Pray for those involved in this incident....
*****Latest UPDATE************
Statement of Nick Sandmann, Covington Catholic High School Junior, Regarding Incident at the Lincoln Memorial

I am providing this factual account of what happened on Friday afternoon at the Lincoln Memorial to correct misinformation and outright lies being spread about my family and me.

I am the student in the video who was confronted by the Native American protestor. I arrived at the Lincoln Memorial at 4:30 p.m. I was told to be there by 5:30 p.m., when our busses were due to leave Washington for the trip back to Kentucky. We had been attending the March for Life rally, and then had split up into small groups to do sightseeing.

When we arrived, we noticed four African American protestors who were also on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. I am not sure what they were protesting, and I did not interact with them. I did hear them direct derogatory insults at our school group.

The protestors said hateful things. They called us “racists,” “bigots,” “white crackers,” “f*****s,” and “incest kids.” They also taunted an African American student from my school by telling him that we would “harvest his organs.” I have no idea what that insult means, but it was startling to hear.

Because we were being loudly attacked and taunted in public, a student in our group asked one of our teacher chaperones for permission to begin our school spirit chants to counter the hateful things that were being shouted at our group. The chants are commonly used at sporting events. They are all positive in nature and sound like what you would hear at any high school. Our chaperone gave us permission to use our school chants. We would not have done that without obtaining permission from the adults in charge of our group.

At no time did I hear any student chant anything other than the school spirit chants. I did not witness or hear any students chant “build that wall” or anything hateful or racist at any time. Assertions to the contrary are simply false. Our chants were loud because we wanted to drown out the hateful comments that were being shouted at us by the protestors.

After a few minutes of chanting, the Native American protestors, who I hadn’t previously noticed, approached our group. The Native American protestors had drums and were accompanied by at least one person with a camera.

The protestor everyone has seen in the video began playing his drum as he waded into the crowd, which parted for him. I did not see anyone try to block his path. He locked eyes with me and approached me, coming within inches of my face. He played his drum the entire time he was in my face.

I never interacted with this protestor. I did not speak to him. I did not make any hand gestures or other aggressive moves. To be honest, I was startled and confused as to why he had approached me. We had already been yelled at by another group of protestors, and when the second group approached I was worried that a situation was getting out of control where adults were attempting to provoke teenagers.

I believed that by remaining motionless and calm, I was helping to diffuse the situation. I realized everyone had cameras and that perhaps a group of adults was trying to provoke a group of teenagers into a larger conflict. I said a silent prayer that the situation would not get out of hand.

During the period of the drumming, a member of the protestor’s entourage began yelling at a fellow student that we “stole our land” and that we should “go back to Europe.” I heard one of my fellow students begin to respond. I motioned to my classmate and tried to get him to stop engaging with the protestor, as I was still in the mindset that we needed to calm down tensions.

I never felt like I was blocking the Native American protestor. He did not make any attempt to go around me. It was clear to me that he had singled me out for a confrontation, although I am not sure why.

The engagement ended when one of our teachers told me the busses had arrived and it was time to go. I obeyed my teacher and simply walked to the busses. At that moment, I thought I had diffused the situation by remaining calm, and I was thankful nothing physical had occurred.

I never understood why either of the two groups of protestors were engaging with us, or exactly what they were protesting at the Lincoln Memorial. We were simply there to meet a bus, not become central players in a media spectacle. This is the first time in my life I’ve ever encountered any sort of public protest, let alone this kind of confrontation or demonstration.

I was not intentionally making faces at the protestor. I did smile at one point because I wanted him to know that I was not going to become angry, intimidated or be provoked into a larger confrontation. I am a faithful Christian and practicing Catholic, and I always try to live up to the ideals my faith teaches me – to remain respectful of others, and to take no action that would lead to conflict or violence.

I harbor no ill will for this person. I respect this person’s right to protest and engage in free speech activities, and I support his chanting on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial any day of the week. I believe he should re-think his tactics of invading the personal space of others, but that is his choice to make.

I am being called every name in the book, including a racist, and I will not stand for this mob-like character assassination of my family’s name. My parents were not on the trip, and I strive to represent my family in a respectful way in all public settings.

I have received physical and death threats via social media, as well as hateful insults. One person threatened to harm me at school, and one person claims to live in my neighborhood. My parents are receiving death and professional threats because of the social media mob that has formed over this issue.

I love my school, my teachers and my classmates. I work hard to achieve good grades and to participate in several extracurricular activities. I am mortified that so many people have come to believe something that did not happen – that students from my school were chanting or acting in a racist fashion toward African Americans or Native Americans. I did not do that, do not have hateful feelings in my heart, and did not witness any of my classmates doing that.

I cannot speak for everyone, only for myself. But I can tell you my experience with Covington Catholic is that students are respectful of all races and cultures. We also support everyone’s right to free speech.

I am not going to comment on the words or account of Mr. Phillips, as I don’t know him and would not presume to know what is in his heart or mind. Nor am I going to comment further on the other protestors, as I don’t know their hearts or minds, either.

I have read that Mr. Phillips is a veteran of the United States Marines. I thank him for his service and am grateful to anyone who puts on the uniform to defend our nation. If anyone has earned the right to speak freely, it is a U.S. Marine veteran.

I can only speak for myself and what I observed and felt at the time. But I would caution everyone passing judgement based on a few seconds of video to watch the longer video clips that are on the internet, as they show a much different story than is being portrayed by people with agendas.

I provided this account of events to the Diocese of Covington so they may know exactly what happened, and I stand ready and willing to cooperate with any investigation they are conducting.

Pope Francis "Jesus manifests himself as the spouse of the people of God..." FULL TEXT + Video at Angelus


St. Peter's Square
Sunday, 20 January 2019

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

Last Sunday, with the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, we began the journey of the liturgical time called "ordinary": the time in which to follow Jesus in his public life, in the mission for which the Father sent him into the world. In today's Gospel (cf. Jn 2: 1-11) we find the account of the first of Jesus' miracles. The first of these miraculous signs takes place in the village of Cana, in Galilee, during a wedding party. It is not accidental that at the beginning of Jesus' public life there is a wedding ceremony, because in him God has married humanity: this is the good news, even if those who invited him do not yet know that at their table is seated the Son of God and that the true spouse is He. In fact, all the mystery of the sign of Cana is founded on the presence of this divine spouse, Jesus, who begins to reveal himself.Jesus manifests himself as the spouse of the people of God, announced by the prophets, and reveals to us the depth of the relationship that unites us to him: it is a new covenant of love.

In the context of the Alliance the meaning of the symbol of wine, which is at the center of this miracle, is fully understood. Just when the party is at its peak, the wine is finished; Our Lady notices it and tells Jesus: "They have no wine" (v. 3). Because it would have been bad to continue the party with water! A fool, for those people. Our Lady realizes it and, since she is a mother, she immediately goes to Jesus. The Scriptures, especially the Prophets, indicated wine as a typical element of the messianic feast (cf. Am 9,13-14; Gl 2,24; ). Water is necessary to live, but the wine expresses the abundance of the banquet and the joy of the party. A party without wine? I do not know ... Turning the water of the amphora used in wine "for the ritual purification of the Jews" (v. 6) - it was the habit: before entering the house, purifying oneself - Jesus fulfills an eloquent sign: he transforms the Law of Moses in the Gospel, bearer of joy.

And then, let us look at Mary: the words that Mary addresses to the servants come to crown the spousal framework of Cana: "Whatever he tells you, do it" (v. 5). Even today, Our Lady tells us all: "Whatever you say, do it". These words are a precious inheritance that our Mother has left us. And indeed servants obey in Cana. "Jesus said to them: Fill the jars with water. And they filled them to the brim. He said to them again: Now take it and bring it to the one who directs the banquet. And they brought them "(verses 7-8). In this marriage, a New Covenant is really stipulated and the new mission is entrusted to the servants of the Lord, that is to the whole Church: "Whatever you say, do it". To serve the Lord means to listen and practice his word. It is the simple, essential recommendation of the Mother of Jesus, it is the program of life of the Christian.

I would like to highlight an experience that surely many of us have had in life. When we are in difficult situations, when problems occur that we do not know how to solve, when we often feel anxiety and anguish, when we lack the joy, go to Our Lady and say: "We have no wine. Wine is finished: look how I am, look at my heart, look at my soul ". Tell the Mother. And she will go to Jesus to say: "Look at this, look at this: it has no wine". And then, he will come back to us and tell us: "Whatever you say, do it".

For each of us, to draw from the amphora is equivalent to trusting the Word and the Sacraments to experience God's grace in our life. Then we too, like the table master who tasted water turned into wine, can exclaim: "You have kept good wine aside until now" (v. 10). Jesus always surprises us. We speak to the Mother because you speak to the Son, and He will surprise us.

May she, the Blessed Virgin help us to follow her invitation: "Whatever she tells you, do it", so that we can fully open ourselves to Jesus, recognizing in everyday life the signs of his vivifying presence.

After the Angelus

Dear brothers and sisters,

Today I have two pains in my heart: Colombia and the Mediterranean.

I wish to assure my closeness to the Colombian people, after the serious terrorist attack last Thursday at the National Police School. I pray for the victims and their families, and I continue to pray for the path of peace in Colombia.

I am thinking of the 170 victims, shipwrecked in the Mediterranean. They were looking for a future for their lives. Victims, perhaps, of human traffickers. We pray for them and for those who are responsible for what happened.

"Ave or Maria, ...".

In a few days I will leave for Panama - [answering the cries from the square:] you too? -, where the World Youth Day will take place from 22 to 27 January. I ask you to pray for this very beautiful and important event on the path of the Church.
This week the Message for the World Communications Day will be published, which this year contains a reflection on the communities of the network and the human community. Internet and social media are a resource of our time; an opportunity to stay in touch with others, to share values ​​and projects, and to express the desire to make a community. The network can also help us to pray in community, to pray together.

This is why Father Fornos is with me: he is the international director of the Apostolate of Prayer. I would like to introduce you to the official platform of the World Network of Prayer of the Pope: Click To Pray. Here I will insert the intentions and requests for prayer for the Church's mission.

I especially invite you young people to download the Click To Pray app, continuing to pray with me the Rosary for Peace, especially during the World Youth Day in Panama.

The first International Education Day, established by the United Nations to highlight and promote the essential role of education in human and social development, is also celebrated on 24 January. I encourage, in this context, the effort of UNESCO to make peace grow in the world through education, and I hope that this is made accessible to all and that it is integral, free from ideological colonization. A prayer and a wish to all educators and educators: good work!

I greet all of you, dear pilgrims and faithful Romans! In particular, the parish groups from Barcelona and Poland: I see so many Polish flags here! The students and professors of Badajoz (Spain); and the many girls from Panama - you came to get me!

I greet the faithful of Nereto and Formia; those of Saints Fabiano and Venanzio in Rome; and the young people of San Giuseppe della Pace in Milan.

A special greeting to the Italian Friends of Raoul Follereau and to the sick people of Hansen's disease, as well as to those close to them on the path of human and social care and redemption.

I wish everyone a happy Sunday. Please do not forget to pray for me. Good lunch and goodbye!

Saint January 20 : Bl. Cyprian Michael Iwene Tansi : Nigerian Priest

September, 1903, Aguleri, Anambra, Nigeria
January 20, 1964, Leicester, England
March 22, 1998 by Pope John Paul II
Bl. Cyprian Iwene Tansi was born in Nigeria, Africa, in 1903. His parents were not Christians, but they sent Iwene to a school run by Catholic missionaries. There he learned about Jesus and made the decision to become a follower of Christ. He received the name Michael when he was baptized.

Teachers were needed for the Catholic schools founded by the missionaries, so Michael decided to become a teacher. He earned his teaching certificate when he was only 16. He taught for several years and even became a headmaster, or principal. Michael’s work was satisfying, but he wanted to do more to help others to find Christ.

Michael entered St. Paul’s Seminary at Igbarium in 1925. After ordination in 1937, he served as a parish priest in several villages. It was important for him to know all his parishioners, so he traveled on foot or on his bicycle to minister to the poor, the lonely, and the sick. He had a special interest in preparing young women for marriage. With the help of local nuns, the women were taught about Christian marriage and how to care for the children they would have.

Michael longed for the chance to spend more time in quiet prayer. He bishop gave him permission to join an order of Trappist monks in England. In the monastery, Michael took the name “Father Cyprian.” He hoped that one day he would be able to open a Trappist monastery in Nigeria.

After many prayerful years in the monastery, Father Cyprian died in 1964. His body was returned to his homeland for burial in 1986.

Father Cyprian was declared “Blessed” by Pope John Paul II in 1998 in ceremonies in Nigeria.


Sunday Mass Online : Sunday January 20, 2019 - #Eucharist - Readings + Video

Second Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 66

Reading 1IS 62:1-5

For Zion's sake I will not be silent,
for Jerusalem's sake I will not be quiet,
until her vindication shines forth like the dawn
and her victory like a burning torch.

Nations shall behold your vindication,
and all the kings your glory;
you shall be called by a new name
pronounced by the mouth of the LORD.
You shall be a glorious crown in the hand of the LORD,
a royal diadem held by your God.
No more shall people call you "Forsaken, "
or your land "Desolate, "
but you shall be called "My Delight, "
and your land "Espoused."
For the LORD delights in you
and makes your land his spouse.
As a young man marries a virgin,
your Builder shall marry you;
and as a bridegroom rejoices in his bride
so shall your God rejoice in you.

Responsorial PsalmPS 96:1-2, 2-3, 7-8, 9-10 

R. (3) Proclaim his marvelous deeds to all the nations.
Sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all you lands.
Sing to the LORD; bless his name.
R. Proclaim his marvelous deeds to all the nations.
Announce his salvation, day after day.
Tell his glory among the nations;
 among all peoples, his wondrous deeds.
R. Proclaim his marvelous deeds to all the nations.
Give to the LORD, you families of nations,
give to the LORD glory and praise;
 give to the LORD the glory due his name!
R. Proclaim his marvelous deeds to all the nations.
Worship the LORD in holy attire.
Tremble before him, all the earth;
Say among the nations: The LORD is king.
He governs the peoples with equity.
R. Proclaim his marvelous deeds to all the nations.

Reading 21 COR 12:4-11

Brothers and sisters:
There are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit;
there are different forms of service but the same Lord;
there are different workings but the same God
who produces all of them in everyone.
To each individual the manifestation of the Spirit
is given for some benefit.
To one is given through the Spirit the expression of wisdom;
to another, the expression of knowledge according to the
same Spirit;
to another, faith by the same Spirit;
to another, gifts of healing by the one Spirit;
to another, mighty deeds;
to another, prophecy;
to another, discernment of spirits;
to another, varieties of tongues;
to another, interpretation of tongues.
But one and the same Spirit produces all of these,
distributing them individually to each person as he wishes.

Alleluia CF. 2 THES 2:14

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
God has called us through the Gospel
to possess the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelJN 2:1-11

There was a wedding at Cana in Galilee,
and the mother of Jesus was there.
Jesus and his disciples were also invited to the wedding.
When the wine ran short,
the mother of Jesus said to him,
"They have no wine."
And Jesus said to her,
"Woman, how does your concern affect me?
My hour has not yet come."
His mother said to the servers,
"Do whatever he tells you."
Now there were six stone water jars there for Jewish ceremonial washings,
each holding twenty to thirty gallons.
Jesus told the them,
"Fill the jars with water."
So they filled them to the brim.
Then he told them,
"Draw some out now and take it to the headwaiter."
So they took it.
And when the headwaiter tasted the water that had become wine,
without knowing where it came from
— although the servers who had drawn the water knew —,
the headwaiter called the bridegroom and said to him,
"Everyone serves good wine first,
and then when people have drunk freely, an inferior one;
but you have kept the good wine until now."
Jesus did this as the beginning of his signs at Cana in Galilee
and so revealed his glory,
and his disciples began to believe in him.

Saint January 20 : St. Sebastian : Martyr : Patron of #Soldiers and Athletes

Feast Day:
January 20
Patron of:
Soldiers, plagues, arrows,  athletes
Roman martyr; little more than the fact of his martyrdom can be proved about St. Sebastian. In the "Depositio martyrum" of the chronologer of 354 it is mentioned that Sebastian was buried on the Via Appia. St. Ambrose ("In Psalmum cxviii"; "Sermo", XX, no. xliv in PL, XV, 1497) states that Sebastian came from Milan and even in the time of St. Ambrose was venerated there. The Acts, probably written at the beginning of the fifth century and formerly ascribed erroneously to Ambrose, relate that he was an officer in the imperial bodyguard and had secretly done many acts of love and charity for his brethren in the Faith. When he was finally discovered to be a Christian, in 286, he was handed over to the Mauretanian archers, who pierced him with arrows; he was healed, however, by the widowed St. Irene. He was finally killed by the blows of a club. These stories are unhistorical and not worthy of belief. The earliest mosaic picture of St. Sebastian, which probably belongs to the year 682, shows a grown, bearded man in court dress but contains no trace of an arrow. It was the art of the Renaissance that first portrayed him as a youth pierced by arrows. In 367 a basilica which was one of the seven chief churches of Rome was built over his grave. The present church was completed in 1611 by Scipio Cardinal Borghese. His relics in part were taken in the year 826 to St. Medard at Soissons. Sebastian is considered a protector against the plague. Celebrated answers to prayer for his protection against the plague are related of Rome in 680, Milan in 1575, and Lisbon in 1599. His feast day is 20 January.
Prayer to Saint Sebastian

Dear Commander of the Roman Emperor’s court, You chose to also be a soldier of Christ
And dared to spread faith in the King of Kings, For which you were condemned to die.
Your body, however, proved athletically strong And the executing arrows extremely weak. So another means to kill you was chosen And you gave your life to the Lord.
May athletes always be as strong as their faith As their Patron Saint so clearly has been.