Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Saint June 20 : St. Silverius a Pope who Died in 537

St. Silverius
Feast: June 20

Feast Day:June 20
Born:480 at Frosinone (in modern Italy)
Died:November 537
Patron of:Ponza, Italy
Dates of birth and death unknown. He was the son of Pope Hormisdas who had been married before becoming one of the higher clergy. Silverius entered the service of the Church and was subdeacon at Rome when Pope Agapetus died at Constantinople, 22 April, 536. The Empress Theodora, who favoured the Monophysites sought to bring about the election as pope of the Roman deacon Vigilius who was then at Constantinople and had given her the desired guarantees as to the Monophysites. However, Theodatus, King of the Ostrogoths, who wished to prevent the election of a pope connected with Constantinople, forestalled her, and by his influence the subdeacon Silverius was chosen. The election of a subdeacon as Bishop of Rome was unusual. Consequently, it is easy to understand that, as the author of the first part of the life of Silverius in the "Liber pontificalis" (ed. Duchesne, I, 210) relates, a strong opposition to it appeared among the clergy. This, however, was suppressed by Theodatus so that, finally, after Silverius had been consecrated bishop (probably on 8 June, 536) all the Roman presbyters gave their consent in writing to his elevation. The assertion made by the author just mentioned that Silverius secured the intervention of Theodatus by payment of money is unwarranted, and is to be explained by the writer's hostile opinion of the pope and the Goths. The author of the second part of the life in the "Liber pontificalis" is favourably inclined to Silverius. The pontificate of this pope belongs to an unsettled, disorderly period and he himself fell a victim to the intrigues of the Byzantine Court.

After Silverius had become pope the Empress Theodora sought to win him for the Monophysites. She desired especially to have him enter into communion with the Monophysite Patriarch of Constantinople, Anthimus, who had been excommunicated and deposed by Agapetus, and with Severus of Antioch. However, the pope committed himself to nothing and Theodora now resolved to overthrow him and to gain the papal see for Vigilius. Troublous times befell Rome during the struggle that broke out in Italy between the Ostrogoths and the Byzantines after the death of Amalasuntha, daughter of Theodoric the Great. The Ostrogothic king, Vitiges, who ascended the throne in August, 536, besieged the city. The churches over the catacombs outside of the city were devastated, the graves of the martyrs in the catacombs themselves were broken open and desecrated. In December, 536, the Byzantine general Belisarius garrisoned Rome and was received by the pope in a friendly and courteous manner. Theodora sought to use Belisarius for the carrying out of her plan to depose Silverius and to put in his place the Roman deacon Vigilius, formerly apocrisary at Constantinople, who had now gone to Italy. Antonina, wife of Belisarius, influenced her husband to act as Theodora desired. By means of a forged letter the pope was accused of a treasonable agreement with the Gothic king who was besieging Rome. It was asserted that Silverius had offered the king to leave one of the city gates secretly open so as to permit the Goths to enter. Silverius was consequently arrested in March, 537, roughly stripped of his episcopal dress, given the clothing of a monk and carried off to exile in the East. Vigilius was consecrated Bishop of Rome in his stead.

Silverius was taken to Lycia where he was went to reside at Patara. The Bishop of Patara very soon discovered that the exiled pope was innocent. He journeyed to Constantinople and was able to lay before the Emperor Justinian such proofs of the innocence of the exile that the emperor wrote to Belisarius commanding a new investigation of the matter. Should it turn out that the letter concerning the alleged plot in favour of the Goths was forged, Silverius should be placed once more in possession of the papal see. At the same time the emperor allowed Silverius to return to Italy, and the latter soon entered the country, apparently at Naples. However, Vigilius arranged to take charge of his unlawfully deposed predecessor. He evidently acted in agreement with the Empress Theodora and was aided by Antonina, the wife of Belisarius. Silverius was taken to the Island of Palmaria in the Tyrrhenian Sea and kept their in close confinement. Here he died in consequence of the privations and harsh treatment he endured. The year of his death is unknown, but he probably did not live long after reachingPalmaria. He was buried on the island, according to the testimony of the "Liber pontificalis" on 20 June; his remains were never taken from Palmaria. According to the same witness he was invoked after death by the believers who visited his grave. In later times he was venerated as a saint. The earliest proof of this is given by a list of saints of the eleventh century (Mélanges d'archéologie et d'histoire, 1893, 169). The "Martyrologium" of Peter de Natalibus of the fourteenth century also contains his feast, which is recorded in the present Roman Martyrology on 20 June.

[Editor's note: According to the Liber Pontificalis, Pope St. Silverius was exiled not to Palmaria, but rather to the Island of Palmarola, a much smaller and more desolate island near Ponza, Italy, in the Bay of Naples.]

(Taken from Catholic Encyclopedia)

Pope Francis explains "We ask the Lord to let us experience a new Pentecost, which expands our hearts and tunes our feelings with those of Christ..." Full Text


St. Peter's Square
Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Catechesis on the Acts of the Apostles: 3. "Languages ​​like of fire" (Acts 2: 3). The Pentecost and the dynamis of the Spirit that inflames the human word and makes it the Gospel

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

Fifty days after Easter, in that cenacle which is now their home and where the presence of Mary, mother of the Lord, is the element of cohesion, the Apostles live an event that exceeds their expectations. Gathered in prayer - prayer is the "lung" that gives breath to the disciples of all times; without prayer one cannot be a disciple of Jesus; without prayer we cannot be Christians! It is air, it is the lung of Christian life - they are surprised by the irruption of God. It is an irruption that does not tolerate the closed: it opens the doors through the force of a wind that remembers the ruah, the primordial breath , and fulfills the promise of "strength" made by the Risen One before his dismissal (see Acts 1,8). Suddenly, from above, "a roar, almost a wind that crashes down, and filled the whole house where they were" (Acts 2,2).
Then the fire is added to the wind which recalls the burning bush and the Sinai with the gift of the ten words (see Es 19,16-19). In the biblical tradition, fire accompanies the manifestation of God. In fire, God gives his living and energetic word (see Hebrews 4:12) which opens to the future; the fire symbolically expresses his work of heating, illuminating and testing hearts, his care in proving the resistance of human works, in purifying and revitalizing them. While at Sinai the voice of God is heard, in Jerusalem, on the feast of Pentecost, it is Peter who speaks, the rock on which Christ chose to build his Church. His word, weak and even capable of denying the Lord, crossed by the fire of the Spirit gains strength, becomes capable of piercing the hearts and moving to conversion. God in fact chooses what is weak in the world to confuse the strong (see 1 Cor 1:27).

The Church is thus born of the fire of love and of a "fire" that flares up at Pentecost and which manifests the strength of the Word of the Risen One imbued with the Holy Spirit. The new and definitive Covenant is founded no longer on a law written on stone tablets, but on the action of the Spirit of God who makes all things new and is engraved in hearts of flesh.

The word of the Apostles is imbued with the Spirit of the Risen One and becomes a new, different word, which however can be understood, as if it were translated simultaneously in all languages: in fact "each one heard them speaking in his own language" (Acts 2: 6). It is the language of truth and love, which is the universal language: even the illiterate can understand it. Everyone understands the language of truth and love. If you go with the truth of your heart, with sincerity, and go with love, everyone will understand you. Even if you can't speak, but with a caress, that is truthful and loving.

The Holy Spirit not only manifests itself through a symphony of sounds that unites and harmonically composes the differences but presents itself as the orchestra conductor who plays the scores of the praises for the "great works" of God. The Holy Spirit is the the creator of communion, it is the artist of reconciliation who knows how to remove the barriers between Jews and Greeks, between slaves and free, to make one body. He builds the community of believers by harmonizing the unity of the body and the multiplicity of the members. It makes the Church grow by helping it to go beyond human limits, sins and any scandal.

The wonder is so great, and someone wonders if those men are drunk. Then Peter intervenes on behalf of all the Apostles and rereads that event in the light of Joel 3, where a new outpouring of the Holy Spirit is announced. The followers of Jesus are not drunk, but live what Saint Ambrose calls "the sober intoxication of the Spirit", which turns prophecy through dreams and visions among the people of God. This prophetic gift is not reserved only for some, but for all those who invoke the name of the Lord.

From now on, from that moment, the Spirit of God moves hearts to welcome the salvation that passes through a Person, Jesus Christ, the One whom men have nailed to the wood of the cross and whom God has raised from the dead "freeing him from sorrows of death (Acts 2.24). It is He who has poured out that Spirit that orchestrates the polyphony of praise and that everyone can hear. As Benedict XVI said, "this is Pentecost: Jesus, and through Him God himself, comes to us and draws us into himself" (Homily, 3 June 2006). The Spirit works the divine attraction: God seduces us with his Love and thus involves us, to move history and initiate processes through which new life filters. Only the Spirit of God in fact has the power to humanize and fraternize every context, starting from those who welcome it.
We ask the Lord to let us experience a new Pentecost, which expands our hearts and tunes our feelings with those of Christ, so that we proclaim his transforming word without shame and bear witness to the power of love that calls to life all that it encounters.
Greetings in Various Languages:

Je salue cordialement les pèlerins de Suisse, de France et d'autres pays francophones, venant en particulier de Genève, de Paris et de La Guadeloupe. Alors que nous allons célébrer la fête du Corps et du Sang du Christ, je vous invite à donner a central place à la Eucharistie dans vos vies. Cest est nelle fait vivre de la vie du Christ. C est elle qui fait l'Eglise. Que Dieu vous bénisse!

[I cordially greet the pilgrims from Switzerland, France and other French-speaking countries, especially those in Geneva, Paris and Guadeloupe. The Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ, which we are about to celebrate is an invitation to give a central place to the Eucharist in your life. It is the Eucharist that makes us live the life of Christ and makes the Church. God bless you!]

I welcome all the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors taking part in today's audience, especially those from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Australia, India, Indonesia, Canada and the United States of America. My special greeting goes to the Hiroshima and Nagasaki Youth Peace Messengers from Japan. I also greet the winners of the traditional Bible Contest of the Holy Land. On the whole of you I invoke the joy and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ. God bless you!

[I welcome the English-speaking pilgrims present at today's audience, especially those from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Australia, India, Indonesia, Canada and the United States of America. I greet in particular the Young Messengers of Peace of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, who have come from Japan. I also greet the winners of the traditional Biblical Competition in the Holy Land. Upon all I invoke the joy and peace of the Lord Jesus Christ. God bless you!]

Herzlich heiße ich alle Brüder und Schwestern deutscher Sprache willkommen. Der Heilige Geist macht lebendig und führt uns in Christus als seine Kirche zusammen. Lassen wir uns von seiner Kraft verwandeln, um das Heil des Herrn zu verkünden und seinen Frieden und seine Versöhnung zu bezeugen, die die Welt so sehr braucht. Der Heilige Geist erleuchte und führe uns allezeit.

[I address a cordial welcome to the German-speaking brothers and sisters. The Holy Spirit gives life and unites us in Christ as his Church. Let us allow ourselves to be transformed by its strength to announce the salvation of the Lord and to bear witness to his peace and reconciliation which the world so much needs. May the Holy Spirit enlighten us and guide us always.]

I pay cordially to los peregrinos de lengua española venidos de España y Latinoamérica; in a particular way to the pilgrims of the Diócesis de León, acompañados por su obispo, Msgr. Julián López Martín. I invite you to see the Señor experimenting a new Pentecosts in all the rooms, for the Parito clam dilate nuestro corazón haciéndolo semejante al de Cristo, y así podamos testiar to amor en medio del mundo y de las personas que nos rodean. Que Dios los bendiga.

Saúdo cordialmente os peregrinos de língua portuguesa, de especial way os grupos paroquiais do Rio de Janeiro and de Belo Horizonte and os fiéis de Aveiro: o Senhor vos encha de alegria and ilumine as decisões da vossa vida, para realizardes fielmente a vontade do Pai heavenly a vosso respeito. Rezai por mim. Não vos faltará a minha oração and Bênção de Deus.

[I cordially greet the Portuguese-speaking pilgrims, especially the parish groups of Rio de Janeiro and Belo Horizonte and the faithful of Aveiro: the Lord fill you with joy and enlighten the decisions of your life, so that you faithfully fulfill the will of the heavenly Father about you. Pray for me; you will not miss my prayer and God's Blessing.]

أرحب بالحاضرين الناطقين باللغة العربية ، وخاصة بالقادمين من العراق ، ومن الأردن ، ومن الشرق الأوسط. "إن الروح القدس هو من ينقل باستمرار من العدم إلى الخليقة ، ومن الفوضى إلى النظام ، ومن الارتباك إلى الانسجام ، من التشوه إلى الجمال ، من العتيق إلى الجديد". ليبارككم الرب جميعا ويحرسكم دائما من الشرير!

[I warmly welcome the Arabic-speaking pilgrims, in particular those from Iraq, Jordan and the Middle East. "The Holy Spirit is the one who continually moves from chaos to the cosmos, from disorder to order, from confusion to harmony, from deformity to beauty, from antiquity to novelty". May the Lord bless you and always protect you from the evil one!]

Serdecznie pozdrawiam polskich pielgrzymów. Drodzy bracia i siostry, uroczystość Najświętszego Ciała i Krwi Chrystusa, którą będziemy obchodzić, jest szczególną sposobnością do ożywienia naszej wiary w rzeczywistą obecność Pana w Eucharystii. Celebracja Mszy św., Adoracja eucharystyczna procesje ulicami miast i wsi niech będą świadectwem naszej czci i przylgnięcia do Chrystusa, który daje nam swoje Ciało i Krew, aby karmić nas swoją miłością i uczynić nas uczestnikami Jego życia w chwale Ojca. Niech Jego błogosławieństwo stale wam towarzyszy!
[I cordially greet the Polish pilgrims. Dear brothers and sisters, the solemnity of the Sacred Body and Blood of Christ, which we are about to celebrate, is a special opportunity to revive our faith in the real presence of the Lord in the Eucharist. The celebration of Holy Mass, Eucharistic adoration and processions in the streets of cities and towns are the testimony of our veneration and adherence to Christ who gives us His Body and Blood, to nourish us with His love and make us participants of His life in the glory of the Father. May your blessing always accompany you.]

* * *

I warmly welcome the Italian-speaking pilgrims. In particular I greet the faithful of Ostuni, the children of the First Communion of Martinsicuro, the parents active in the contaminated areas of the Veneto, the soldiers of the naval team of Santa Rosa.

I am pleased to welcome the young, the elderly, the sick and newlyweds, especially the couples of the diocese of Tivoli. The day after tomorrow we will celebrate the liturgical memory of Saint Luigi Gonzaga, an admirable example of austerity and evangelical purity. Invoke him to help you build a friendship with Jesus that enables you to face your life with serenity.
FULL TEXT + Image Source Share from - Unofficial Translation

#BreakingNews over 150 people violently Killed in Nigeria by Fulani and Boko Haram - Please Pray

AFRICA/NIGERIA - Kidnapped priest released; over 150 violent deaths in a week
Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Abuja (Agenzia Fides) – Fr. Isaac Agubi, a priest who serves at the Holy Name church of Ikpeshi, 230 km away from Benin City, capital of Edo State in southern Nigeria was released by the police. The priest had been kidnapped on June 16th along the Auchi-Igarra road, around 5 pm, as he was returning home after having celebrated mass. The police forces, helped by some hunters in the area, managed to identify where the kidnappers were in the forest. During the release of the priest one of the bandits was injured.
The kidnappers seem to belong to a group of Fulani, a nomadic shepherd ethnicity, who in Nigeria and other West African countries (where they are known as Peuls) have become protagonists of violent raids against other populations. In the last week in northern Nigeria, violence linked to the Fulani issue and others committed by Boko Haram, caused the death of over 150 people, while nine others were kidnapped.
In the State of Sokoto on June 15, 25 people lost their lives in raids, probably committed by the Fulani, in three villages. In a separate incident, a woman, and her stepson, were kidnapped by a gang of shepherds on Airport Road, in the city of Osi, in the state of Ondo, on their way to Sunday mass.
On 12 June an officer and 20 soldiers in the State of Borno were killed in the attack on a military formation. The Islamic State of West Africa (ISWA), then claimed responsibility for the attack.
On June 14, at least 34 people were killed in an assault by an armed group that attacked three villages in the area of Shinkafi in the State of Zamfara. The bandits, who arrived on motorcycles, set fire to the houses and shot all those they encountered.
A few days ago His Exc. Mgr. Augustine Akubeze, Archbishop of Benin City and President of the Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria, had denounced "the unprecedented level of insecurity" (see Fides, 6/6/2019) and the "complete impunity" of who sows chaos and destruction in the Country. (L.M.) (Full Text Release by Agenzia Fides, 19/6/2019)

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Wednesday June 19, 2019 - #Eucharist

Wednesday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 367

Reading 12 COR 9:6-11

Brothers and sisters, consider this:
whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly,
and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.
Each must do as already determined, without sadness or compulsion,
for God loves a cheerful giver.
Moreover, God is able to make every grace abundant for you,
so that in all things, always having all you need,
you may have an abundance for every good work.
As it is written:

He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor;
his righteousness endures forever.

The one who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food
will supply and multiply your seed
and increase the harvest of your righteousness.

You are being enriched in every way for all generosity,
which through us produces thanksgiving to God.

Responsorial PsalmPS 112:1BC-2, 3-4, 9

R.(1b) Blessed the man who fears the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
Blessed the man who fears the LORD,
who greatly delights in his commands.
His posterity shall be mighty upon the earth;
the upright generation shall be blessed.
R. Blessed the man who fears the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
Wealth and riches shall be in his house;
his generosity shall endure forever.
Light shines through the darkness for the upright;
he is gracious and merciful and just.
R. Blessed the man who fears the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
Lavishly he gives to the poor;
his generosity shall endure forever;
his horn shall be exalted in glory.
R. Blessed the man who fears the Lord.
R. Alleluia.

AlleluiaJN 14:23

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

GospelMT 6:1-6, 16-18

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Take care not to perform righteous deeds
in order that people may see them;
otherwise, you will have no recompense from your heavenly Father.
When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you,
as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets
to win the praise of others.
Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.
But when you give alms,
do not let your left hand know what your right is doing,
so that your almsgiving may be secret.
And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.

"When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites,
who love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on street corners
so that others may see them.
Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.
But when you pray, go to your inner room, close the door,
and pray to your Father in secret.
And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.

"When you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites.
They neglect their appearance,
so that they may appear to others to be fasting.
Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.
But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face,
so that you may not appear to others to be fasting,
except to your Father who is hidden.
And your Father who sees what is hidden will repay you."

Saint June 19 : Saint Juliana Falconieri a Sister of the Servants of Mary or #Servite Order

Saint Juliana Falconieri

Saint Juliana Falconieri was born in 1270, in answer to prayer. Her father was the builder of the splendid church of the Annunziata in Florence, while her uncle, Saint Alexis Falconieri, became one of the seven Founders of the Servite Order. Under his surveillance Juliana grew up more like an angel than a human being, as he said. Her great modesty was remarkable; never during her entire lifetime did she look at her reflection in a mirror. The mere mention of sin made her shudder and tremble, and once, on hearing of a scandal, she fainted.

Her devotion to the sorrows of Our Lady drew her to the Servants of Mary or Servite Order, and at the age of fourteen, after refusing an offer of marriage, she received the habit from Saint Philip Benizi, General of the Order. Her sanctity attracted many novices, for whose direction she was bidden to draw up a rule, and thus she became foundress of the Mantellate.

She was the servant of her Sisters rather than their mistress, while outside her convent she led a life of apostolic charity, converting sinners, reconciling enemies, and healing the sick. She was sometimes rapt for whole days in ecstasy, and her prayers saved the Servite Order when it was in danger of being suppressed.

Saint Juliana in her old age suffered various painful illnesses. She was wasting away through a disease of the stomach which prevented her taking food, and bore her silent agony with constant cheerfulness, grieving only for the privation of Holy Communion. At last, when in her seventieth year she was at the point of death, she begged to be allowed once more to see and adore the Blessed Sacrament. It was brought to her cell and reverently laid on a corporal, which was placed over her heart. At this moment she expired, and the Sacred Host disappeared. After her death the form of the Host was found stamped upon her heart, at the exact spot over which the Blessed Sacrament had been placed. Saint Juliana died in her convent in Florence in 1340. Miracles have been frequently effected through her intercession.

Reflection. Meditate often, says Saint Paul of the Cross, on the sorrows of the Blessed Mother, sorrows inseparable from those of Her beloved Son. If you seek the Cross, there you will find the Mother; and where the Mother is, there also is the Son.

Little Pictorial Lives of the Saints, a compilation based on Butler's Lives of the Saints, and other sources by John Gilmary Shea (Benziger Brothers: New York, 1894).