Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Remembering Saint Pope John Paul II who Died April 2, 2005 at Age 84 - #JPII

Pope John Paul II, who was born in Poland on May 18, 1920, reigned as Pope of the Roman Catholic Church from October 16, 1978 until his death on April 2, 2005.   Saint Pope John Paul II was canonized on April 27, 2013, at a celebration in Saint Peter's Square, presided by Pope Francis. His Feast day is October 22. 
He wrote: Apostolic Letters‎: ‎45 Encyclicals‎: ‎14 Apostolic Exhortations‎: ‎14. Pope John Paul II was the first non-Italian Pope in 400 years. Pope John Paul II was famous for his influence in bringing down the wall in Germany and fighting Communism. 
 Today is Pope John Paul II day in Ontario, Canada. Pope John Paul II visited Ontario twice during his pontificate of more than 25 years.   (the picture below shows Pope Francis kneeling before the tome of Pope John Paul II)

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Holy Mass Online - Readings and Video : Thursday, April 2, 2020 - #Eucharist in Lent - Your Virtual Church

Thursday of the Fifth Week of Lent
Lectionary: 254
Reading 1GN 17:3-9
When Abram prostrated himself, God spoke to him:
“My covenant with you is this:
you are to become the father of a host of nations.
No longer shall you be called Abram;
your name shall be Abraham,
for I am making you the father of a host of nations.
I will render you exceedingly fertile;
I will make nations of you;
kings shall stem from you.
I will maintain my covenant with you
and your descendants after you
throughout the ages as an everlasting pact,
to be your God and the God of your descendants after you.
I will give to you
and to your descendants after you
the land in which you are now staying,
the whole land of Canaan, as a permanent possession;
and I will be their God.”
God also said to Abraham:
“On your part, you and your descendants after you
must keep my covenant throughout the ages.”

Responsorial Psalm105:4-5, 6-7, 8-9

R.    (8a)  The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
Look to the LORD in his strength;
seek to serve him constantly.
Recall the wondrous deeds that he has wrought,
his portents, and the judgments he has uttered.
R.    The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
You descendants of Abraham, his servants,
sons of Jacob, his chosen ones!
He, the LORD, is our God;
throughout the earth his judgments prevail.
R.    The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
He remembers forever his covenant
which he made binding for a thousand generations –
Which he entered into with Abraham
and by his oath to Isaac.
R.    The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.

Verse Before The GospelPS 95:8

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

GospelJN 8:51-59

Jesus said to the Jews:
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever keeps my word will never see death.”
So the Jews said to him,
“Now we are sure that you are possessed.
Abraham died, as did the prophets, yet you say,
‘Whoever keeps my word will never taste death.’
Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died?
Or the prophets, who died?
Who do you make yourself out to be?”
Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is worth nothing;
but it is my Father who glorifies me,
of whom you say, ‘He is our God.’
You do not know him, but I know him.
And if I should say that I do not know him,
I would be like you a liar.
But I do know him and I keep his word.
Abraham your father rejoiced to see my day;
he saw it and was glad.”
So the Jews said to him,
“You are not yet fifty years old and you have seen Abraham?”
Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
before Abraham came to be, I AM.”
So they picked up stones to throw at him;
but Jesus hid and went out of the temple area.
Prayer to make spiritual communion:

People who cannot communicate now make spiritual communion.

At your feet, O my Jesus I bow down and offer you the repentance of my contrite heart, which abysses itself into its nothingness and Your holy presence. I adore you in the Sacrament of Your love, the ineffable Eucharist. I wish to receive you in the poor home that my heart offers you. In anticipation of the happiness of sacramental communion, I want to possess you in spirit. Come to me, oh my Jesus, that I come to you. May Your love inflame my whole being, for life and death. I believe in you, I hope in you, I love you. So be it. Amen

Saint April 2 : St. Mary of Egypt a Former Prostitute who Repented and lived as a Hermitess in the Desert

Born probably about 344; died about 421. At the early age of twelve Mary left her home and came to Alexandria, where for upwards of seventeen years she led a life of public prostitution. At the end of that time, on the occasion of a pilgrimage to Jerusalem for the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, she embarked for Palestine, not however with the intention of making the pilgrimage, but in the hope that life on board ship would afford her new and abundant opportunities of gratifying an insatiable lust. Arrived in Jerusalem she persisted in her shameless life, and on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross joined the crowds towards the church where the sacred relic was venerated, hoping to meet in the gathering some new victims whom she might allure into sin. And now came the turning-point in her career. When she reached the church door, she suddenly felt herself repelled by some secret force, and having vainly attempted three or four times to enter, she retired to a corner of the churchyard, and was struck with remorse for her wicked life, which she recognized as the cause of her exclusion from the church. Bursting into bitter tears and beating her breast, she began to bewail her sins. Just then her eyes fell upon a statue of the Blessed Virgin above the spot where she was standing, and in deep faith and humility of heart she besought Our Lady for help, and permission to enter the church and venerate the sacred wood on which Jesus had suffered, promising that if her request were granted, she would then renounce forever the world and its ways, and forthwith depart whithersoever Our Lady might lead her. Encouraged by prayer and counting on the mercy of the Mother of God, she once more approached the door of the church, and this time succeeded in entering without the slightest difficulty. Having adored the Holy Cross and kissed the pavement of the church, she returned to Our Lady's statue, and while praying there for guidance as to her future course, she seemed to hear a voice from afar telling her that if she crossed the Jordan, she would find rest. That same evening Mary reached the Jordan and received Holy Communion in a church dedicated to the Baptist, and the day following crossed the river and wandered eastward into the desert that stretches towards Arabia.
Here she had lived absolutely alone for forty-seven years, subsisting apparently on herbs, when a priest and monk, named Zosimus, who after the custom of his brethren had come out from his monastery to spend Lent in the desert, met her and learned from her own lips the strange and romantic story of her life. As soon as they met, she called Zosimus by his name and recognized him as a priest. After they had conversed and prayed together, she begged Zosimus to promise to meet her at the Jordan on Holy Thursday evening of the following year and bring with him the Blessed Sacrament. When the appointed evening arrived, Zosimus, we are told, put into a small chalice a portion of the undefiled Body and the precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ (P.L. LXXIII, 686; "Mittens in modico calice intemerati corporis portionem et pretiosi sanguinis D.N.J.C." But the reference to both species is less clear in Acta SS., IX, 82: "Accipiens parvum poculum intemerati corporis ac venerandi sanguinis Christi Dei nostri"), and came to the spot that had been indicated. After some time Mary appeared on the eastern bank of the river, and having made the sign of the cross, walked upon the waters to the western side. Having received Holy Communion, she raised her hands towards heaven, and cried aloud in the words of Simeon: "Now thou dost dismiss thy servant, O Lord, according to thy word in peace, because my eyes have seen thy salvation". She then charged Zosimus to come in the course of a year to the spot where he had first met her in the desert, adding that he would find her then in what condition God might ordain. He came, but only to find the poor saint's corpse, and written beside it on the ground a request that he should bury her, and a statement that she had died a year before, on the very night on which he had given her Holy Communion, far away by the Jordan's banks. Aided, we are told, by a lion, he prepared her grave and buried her, and having commended himself and the Church to her prayers, he returned to his monastery, where now for the first time he recounted the wondrous story of her life.
The saint's life was written not very long after her death by one who states that he learned the details from the monks of the monastery to which Zosimus had belonged. Many authorities mention St. Sophronius, who became Patriarch of Jerusalem in 635, as the author; but as the Bollandists give good reasons for believing that the Life was written before 500, we may conclude that it is from some other hand. The date of the saint is somewhat uncertain. The Bollandists place her death on 1 April, 421, while many other authorities put it a century later. The Greek Church celebrates her feast on 1 April, while the Roman Martyrology assigns it to 2 April, and the Roman Calendar to 3 April. The Greek date is more likely to be correct; the others may be due to the fact that on those days portions of her relics reached the West. Relics of the saint are venerated at Rome, Naples, Cremona, Antwerp, and some other places. Catholic Encyclopedia

344, Egypt
421, Trans-Jordan desert, Palestine
Patron of:
Chastity; Demons (deliverance from); Fever; Skin diseases

Saint April 2 : St. Francis of Paola who had the Gift of Prophecy and Founder of the Order of Minims


1416 at Paola, Calabria, Italy
2 April 1507 at Plessis, France
1512 by Pope Julius II
Founder of the Order of Minims; b. in 1416, at Paula, in Calabria, Italy; d. 2 April, 1507, at Plessis, France. His parents were remarkable for the holiness of their lives. Remaining childless for some years after their marriage they had recourse to prayer, especially commending themselves to the intercession of St. Francis of Assisi. Three children were eventually born to them, eldest of whom was Francis. When still in the cradle he suffered from a swelling which endangered the sight of one of his eyes. His parents again had recourse to Francis of Assisi, and made a vow that their son should pass an entire year in the "little habit" of St Francis in one of the convents of his order, a not uncommon practice in the Middle Ages. The child was immediately cured. From his early years Francis showed signs of extraordinary sanctity, and at the age of thirteen, being admonished by a vision of a Franciscan friar, he entered a convent of the Franciscan Order in order to fulfil the vow made by his parents. Here he gave great edification by his love of prayer and mortification, his profound humility, and his prompt obedience. At the completion of the year he went with his parents on a pilgrimage to Assisi, Rome, and other places of devotion. Returning to Paula he selected a retired spot on his father's estate, and there lived in solitude; but later on he found a more retired dwelling in a cave on the sea coast. Here he remained alone for about six years giving himself to prayer and mortification. In 1435 two companions joined him in his retreat, and to accommodate them Francis caused three cells and a chapel to be built: in this way the new order was begun. The number of his disciples gradually increased, and about 1454, with the permission of Pyrrhus, Archbishop of Cosenza, Francis built a large monastery and church. The building of this monastery was the occasion of a great outburst of enthusiasm and devotion on the part of the people towards Francis: even the nobles carried stones and joined in the work. Their devotion was increased by the many miracles which the saint wrought in answer to their prayers. The rule of life adopted by Francis and his religious was one of extraordinary severity. They observed perpetual abstinence and lived in great poverty, but the distinguishing mark of the order was humility. They were to seek to live unknown and hidden from the world. To express this character which he would have his disciples cultivate, Francis eventually obtained from the Holy See that they should be styled Minims, the least of all religious. In 1474 Sixtus IV gave him permission to write a rule for his community, and to assume the title of Hermits of St. Francis: this rule was formally approved by Alexander VI, who, however, changed their title into that of Minims. After the approbation of the order, Francis founded several new monasteries in Calabria and Sicily. He also established convents of nuns, and a third order for people living in the world, after the example of St. Francis of Assisi. He had an extraordinary gift of prophecy: thus he foretold the capture of Otranto by the Turks in 1480, and its subsequent recovery by the King of Naples. Also he was gifted with discernment of consciences. He was no respecter of persons of whatever rank or position. He rebuked the King of Naples for his ill-doing and in consequence suffered much persecution. When Louis XI was in his last illness he sent an embassy to Calabria to beg the saint to visit him. Francis refused to come nor could he be prevailed upon until the pope ordered him to go. He then went to the king at Plessis-les-Tours and was with him at his death. Charles VIII, Louis's successor, much admired the saint and during his reign kept him near the court and frequently consulted him. This king built a monastery for Minims at Plessis and another at Rome on the Pincian Hill. The regard in which Charles VIII held the saint was shared by Louis XII, who succeeded to the throne in 1498. Francis was now anxious to return to Italy, but the king would not permit him, not wishing to lose his counsels and direction. The last three months of his life he spent in entire solitude, preparing for death. On Maundy Thursday he gathered his community around him and exhorted them especially to have mutual charity amongst themselves and to maintain the rigour of their life and in particular perpetual abstinence. The next day, Good Friday, he again called them together and gave them his last instructions and appointed a vicar-general. He then received the last sacraments and asked to have the Passion according to St. John read out to him, and whilst this was being read, his soul passed away. Leo X canonized him in 1519. In 1562 the Huguenots broke open his tomb and found his body incorrupt. They dragged it forth and burnt it, but some of the bones were preserved by the Catholics and enshrined in various churches of his order. The Order of Minims does not seem at any time to have been very extensive, but they had houses in many countries. The definitive rule was approved in 1506 by Julius II, who also approved a rule for the nuns of the order. The feast of St. Francis of Paula is kept by the universal Church on 2 April, the day on which he died. The Catholic Encyclopedia 

Pope Francis explains the "...purified heart...the result of a process.." "..when we realize that our worst enemy is often hidden in our hearts....Because sins change the inner vision.." Full Video/Text

GENERAL AUDIENCE with Pope Francis in the Library of the Apostolic Palace
Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

Today we read together the sixth beatitude, which promises the vision of God and has purity of heart as a condition.

A Psalm says: "My heart repeats your invitation:" Seek my face! ". Your face, Lord, I seek. Do not hide your face from me "(27,8-9).

This language manifests the thirst for a personal relationship with God, not mechanical, not a little nebulous, no: personal, which also the book of Job expresses as a sign of a sincere relationship. Thus says the book of Job: "I knew you only by hearsay, but now my eyes have seen you" (Job 42.5). And many times I think this is the path of life, in our relationships with God. We know God by hearsay, but with our experience we go on, on, on and on and we know him directly, if we are faithful ... And this is the maturity of the Spirit.

How can we get to this intimacy, to know God with our eyes? One can think of the disciples of Emmaus, for example, who have the Lord Jesus beside them, "but their eyes were prevented from recognizing him" (Lk 24,16). The Lord will open their eyes at the end of a journey that culminates in the breaking of the bread and began with a rebuke: "Foolish and slow-hearted to believe in all that the prophets said!" (Lk 24.25). That is the rebuke of the beginning. Here is the origin of their blindness: their foolish and slow heart. And when the heart is foolish and slow, things are not seen. Things are seen as clouded. Here lies the wisdom of this bliss: to be able to contemplate it is necessary to enter within us and make room for God, because, as St. Augustine says, "God is more intimate to me than myself" ("interior intimo meo": Confessions , III, 6.11). To see God there is no need to change glasses or observation point, or to change theological authors who teach the way: you must free your heart from its deceptions! This road is the only one.

This is a decisive maturation: when we realize that our worst enemy is often hidden in our hearts. The most noble battle is that against the internal deceptions that generate our sins. Because sins change the inner vision, they change the evaluation of things, they show things that are not true, or at least that are not so true.

It is therefore important to understand what "purity of the heart" is. To do this, it must be remembered that for the Bible the heart does not consist only of feelings, but is the most intimate place of the human being, the inner space where a person is himself. This, according to the biblical mentality.

The same Gospel of Matthew says: "If the light that is in you is darkness, how great the darkness will be!" (6.23). This "light" is the gaze of the heart, the perspective, the synthesis, the point from which reality can be read (cf. Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium, 143).

But what does "pure" heart mean? The pure in heart lives in the presence of the Lord, keeping in his heart what is worthy of the relationship with him; only in this way does it have a "unified", linear, non-tortuous but simple life.

The purified heart is therefore the result of a process that involves liberation and renunciation. The pure of heart is not born as such, has experienced an interior simplification, learning to deny evil in itself, which in the Bible is called circumcision of the heart (cf. Dt 10.16; 30.6; Ez 44.9; Jer 4, 4).

This inner purification implies the recognition of that part of the heart that is under the influence of evil - "You know, Father, I feel like this, I think so, I see like this, and this is bad": to recognize the bad part, the part that is clouded by evil - to learn the art of always being taught and led by the Holy Spirit. The journey from the sick heart, from the sinful heart, from the heart that cannot see things well, because it is in sin, in the fullness of the light of the heart it is the work of the Holy Spirit. It is he who guides us on this journey. Here, through this journey of the heart, we come to "see God".

In this beatific vision there is a future eschatological dimension, as in all the Beatitudes: it is the joy of the Kingdom of Heaven to which we are going. But there is also the other dimension: seeing God means understanding the designs of Providence in what happens to us, recognizing his presence in the Sacraments, his presence in the brothers, especially the poor and suffering, and recognizing him where He manifests himself ( cf Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2519).

This happiness is a bit the fruit of the previous ones: if we have listened to the thirst for good that lives in us and we are aware of living in mercy, a journey of liberation begins that lasts a lifetime and leads to Heaven. It is a serious job, a job that the Holy Spirit does if we give him space to do it, if we are open to the action of the Holy Spirit. For this reason we can say that a work of God in us - in the trials and purifications of life - and this work of God and the Holy Spirit leads to great joy, to true peace. We are not afraid, we open the doors of our heart to the Holy Spirit to purify us and carry us forward on this path towards full joy.
I cordially greet the Italian-speaking faithful. My thoughts go, in particular, to the groups that had long booked to be present today. Among these, the young people of the profession of faith of the Diocese of Milan, connected to this meeting through the means of social communication. Dear children, even if your pilgrimage to Rome is only virtual, I almost seem to perceive your joyful and noisy presence, made concrete also by the many written messages you sent me: you have sent many, and they are beautiful! Messages are beautiful, beautiful. Thank you very much. Thanks for this union with us. Pray for me, don't forget. I thank you and encourage you to always live the faith with enthusiasm and not to lose hope in Jesus, the faithful friend who fills our life with happiness, even in difficult times.

Lastly, I greet the young, the sick, the elderly and the newlyweds. The last glimpse of the Lenten season we are experiencing may favor an adequate preparation for the celebration of Easter, each leading to an even more felt closeness to Christ. My blessing to all.

Wow Catholic Bishop travels across State to Bless Medical workers on the Front Lines with the Eucharist - Watch Video

Wmur9 reports that in Manchester, New Hampshire, USA a bishop of the Diocese of Manchester is traveling across the state this week to bless those working on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Bishop Peter Libasci was outside Catholic Medical Center Saturday afternoon and blessed health care workers and patients. Libasci also visited Manchester firefighters and then drove to Concord and Laconia. He'll be in the North Country on Sunday. 
 “No matter what, the lord always traveled around the cities and towns. He healed the sick. He cured the sick. I'm not going be able to do that, but I can bring the graces, the blessings to encourage and to ask God to intercede,” 
Libasci said. The bishop is asking people to help, encourage and support one another.
Edited from Wmur9
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Quote to SHARE by St. John Chrysostom “Let the mouth also fast from Foul Words and Unjust Criticism. For what does it profit if we abstain from fish and meat and yet bite...”

“Let the mouth also fast from fast from foul words and unjust Criticism. For what does it profit if we abstain from fish and meat and yet bite and devour our brothers and sisters? The evil speaker eats the flesh of his brother and bites the body of his neighbor. ” ― Saint John Chrysostom

At Mass, Pope Francis says "Let yourself be guided by the Holy Spirit." and Prays for those working in Media - Full Video



"Stay in the Lord"

Wednesday, April 1, 2020


Today I would like us to pray for all those who work in the media, who work to communicate today, because people are not so isolated; for the education of children, for information, to help endure this closing time.


In these days, the Church makes us listen to John's eighth chapter: there is such a strong discussion between Jesus and the doctors of the Law. And above all, we try to show our identity: John tries to get closer to that struggle to clarify his identity, both of Jesus, as the identity that the doctors have. Jesus puts them on the corner by showing them their contradictions. And they, in the end, find no other way out than the insult: it is one of the saddest pages, it is a blasphemy. They insult the Madonna.

But speaking of identity, Jesus said to the Jews who had believed, advised them: "If you remain in my word, you really are my disciples" (Jn 8:31). Return that word so dear to the Lord that he will repeat it many times, and then in the dinner: stay. "Stay in me." Stay in the Lord. It does not say: "Study well, learn the arguments well": this takes it for granted. But it goes to the most important thing, the one that is most dangerous for life, if you don't do it: stay. "Stay in my word" (Jn 8:31). And those who remain in the word of Jesus have their own Christian identity. And which? "You are truly my disciples" (Jn 8:31). Christian identity is not a card that says "I am a Christian", an identity card: no. It is discipleship. You, if you stay in the Lord, in the Word of the Lord, in the life of the Lord, you will be a disciple. If you do not stay, you will be one who sympathizes with the doctrine, who follows Jesus as a man who does so much charity, is so good, who has the right values, but discipleship is precisely the true identity of the Christian.

And it will be discipleship that will give us freedom: the disciple is a free man because he remains in the Lord. And "stay in the Lord", what does it mean? Let yourself be guided by the Holy Spirit. The disciple lets himself be guided by the Spirit, for this reason the disciple is always a man of tradition and novelty, he is a free man. Free. Never subject to ideologies, to doctrines within Christian life, doctrines that can be discussed ... remains in the Lord, it is the Spirit that inspires. When we sing to the Spirit, we tell him that he is a guest of the soul, (Cf. Inno Veni, Sancte Spiritus), who lives in us. But this, only if we remain in the Lord.

I ask the Lord to make us know this wisdom to remain in Him and to let us know that familiarity with the Spirit: the Holy Spirit gives us freedom. And this is the anointing. Whoever remains in the Lord is a disciple, and the disciple is an anointed, anointed by the Spirit, who has received the anointing of the Spirit and carries it forward. This is the way that Jesus shows us for freedom and also for life. And discipleship is the anointing received by those who remain in the Lord.

May the Lord make us understand, this is not easy: because the doctors had not understood it, it is not understood only with the head; you understand with your head and heart, this wisdom of the anointing of the Holy Spirit that makes us disciples.

Prayer to make spiritual communion:

People who cannot communicate sacramentally now make spiritual communion.

At Your feet, O my Jesus, I bow down and offer You the repentance of my heart that abysses itself into its nothingness and Your holy presence. I adore you in the sacrament of your love, the Eucharist. I wish to receive you in the poor dwellings that my heart offers you. In anticipation of the happiness of sacramental communion, I want to possess you in spirit. Come to me, oh my Jesus, that I come to you. May Your love inflame my whole being for life and death. I believe in you, I hope in you, I love you.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Holy Mass Online - Readings and Video : Wednesday, April 1, 2020 - #Eucharist in Lent - Your Virtual Church

Wednesday of the Fifth Week of Lent
Lectionary: 253
Reading 1DN 3:14-20, 91-92, 95
King Nebuchadnezzar said:
“Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego,
that you will not serve my god,
or worship the golden statue that I set up?
Be ready now to fall down and worship the statue I had made,
whenever you hear the sound of the trumpet,
flute, lyre, harp, psaltery, bagpipe,
and all the other musical instruments;
otherwise, you shall be instantly cast into the white-hot furnace;
and who is the God who can deliver you out of my hands?”
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered King Nebuchadnezzar,
“There is no need for us to defend ourselves before you
in this matter.
If our God, whom we serve,
can save us from the white-hot furnace
and from your hands, O king, may he save us!
But even if he will not, know, O king,
that we will not serve your god
or worship the golden statue that you set up.”
King Nebuchadnezzar’s face became livid with utter rage
against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
He ordered the furnace to be heated seven times more than usual
and had some of the strongest men in his army
bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego
and cast them into the white-hot furnace.
Nebuchadnezzar rose in haste and asked his nobles,
“Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?”
“Assuredly, O king,” they answered.
“But,” he replied, “I see four men unfettered and unhurt,
walking in the fire, and the fourth looks like a son of God.”
Nebuchadnezzar exclaimed,
“Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego,
who sent his angel to deliver the servants who trusted in him;
they disobeyed the royal command and yielded their bodies
rather than serve or worship any god
except their own God.”

Responsorial PsalmDANIEL 3:52, 53, 54, 55, 56

R.    (52b)  Glory and praise for ever!
“Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of our fathers,
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever;
And blessed is your holy and glorious name,
praiseworthy and exalted above all for all ages.”
R.    Glory and praise for ever!
“Blessed are you in the temple of your holy glory,
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever.
R.    Glory and praise for ever!
“Blessed are you on the throne of your kingdom,
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever.”
R.    Glory and praise for ever!
“Blessed are you who look into the depths
from your throne upon the cherubim;
praiseworthy and exalted above all forever.”
R.    Glory and praise for ever!
“Blessed are you in the firmament of heaven,
praiseworthy and glorious forever.”
R.    Glory and praise for ever!

Verse Before The GospelLK 8:15

Blessed are they who have kept the word with a generous heart
and yield a harvest through perseverance.

GospelJN 8:31-42

Jesus said to those Jews who believed in him,
“If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples,
and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham
and have never been enslaved to anyone.
How can you say, ‘You will become free’?”
Jesus answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin.
A slave does not remain in a household forever,
but a son always remains.
So if the Son frees you, then you will truly be free.
I know that you are descendants of Abraham.
But you are trying to kill me,
because my word has no room among you.
I tell you what I have seen in the Father’s presence;
then do what you have heard from the Father.”
They answered and said to him, “Our father is Abraham.”
Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children,
you would be doing the works of Abraham.
But now you are trying to kill me,
a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God;
Abraham did not do this.
You are doing the works of your father!”
So they said to him, “We were not born of fornication.
We have one Father, God.”
Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me,
for I came from God and am here;
I did not come on my own, but he sent me.”

Saint April 1 : St. Hugh of Grenoble a Carthusian known for Preaching and his Generosity to the Poor

1053 at Chateauneuf, Dauphiné, France
1 April 1132
1134 by Pope Innocent II
St. Hugh was born in 1053 in southeastern France at Châteauneuf-sur-Isère, near Grenoble in the western foothills of the Alps. Such was his reputation for piety and theological knowledge that, although only in his mid-twenties, Hugh was elected bishop of Grenoble even though he had not yet been ordained. He was selected to carry out reforms of abuses within the Church which had been instituted under Pope Gregory VII, who ordained Hugh in Rome after his election as bishop. After two years of successfully battling abuses in Grenoble such as simony (the selling of church positions) and enforcing rules about clerical celibacy, Hugh wanted to retire to the great Benedictine monastery at Cluny. However, Pope Gregory ordered him to remain in his position as bishop. He was well-known for his inspired preaching and his generosity to the poor.

In 1084, Hugh helped St. Bruno of Cologne and six of his companions found the great Carthusian monastery "La Grande Chartreuse" high in the Alps. They devoted their monastic life to prayer and study and were visited by Hugh often. It was reported that, as much as he could in his role as bishop, Hugh adopted the monastic way of life practiced by the monks at Chartreuse. The 2005 film, Into Great Silence, documented the daily life at La Grande Chartreuse. After many years of illness which he endured in patient silence, St. Hugh died on April 1, 1132 and was canonized only two years later by Pope Innocent II. Text:

Saint March 31 : St. Guy of Pomposa : Abbot

St. Guy of Pomposa (1046) was born in Italy and gave everything to the poor. He spent three years, as a hermit, on the island of Po River. He become the abbot of St. Severus. He became a much sought after spiritual adviser. His feast day is March 31.

Watch as England was Re-Dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary - Now you can Pray at Home with the Official Prayers

On Sunday, March 29th, 2020 at 12pm noon, England was re-dedicated to Mary. Although the faithful could not be at their churches, there were and still can be part of the virtual congregation at home.
You can join, anytime, Virtually with the prayers below.

 Why is England called the Dowry of Mary?
On the Feast of Corpus Christi 1381, King Richard II dedicated England to Mary in a ceremony at Westminster Abbey in thanksgiving for his kingdom being saved at the time of the Peasants’ Revolt.
England received the title ‘Mary’s Dowry’; meaning that England was ‘set aside’ as a gift – a dowry – for Our Lady under her guidance and protection. 

 Watch and take part… Pray the Re-dedication

You can join to pray the Angelus Prayer and the Act of Entrustment with Cardinal Vincent Nichols. Subtitles and signed version also available (BSL).

Today we’re invited to take part in the Re-dedication of England as Mary’s Dowry and to make a personal Act of Dedication. Let us unite in prayer and join Cardinal Vincent Nichols.

Our film has subtitles and, if you can read British Sign Laguage (BSL) we have a version of the Cardinal praying the re-dedication between the two prayers below.

The Angelus Promise

The Angelus Promise is a spiritual exercise created to assist us to embrace the message of Our Lady, as expressed in the Angelus. It invites us to ‘share in the joy of the Annunciation’ by following Mary’s openness to God’s call, through her faith-filled ‘yes’. Through our own faith-filled ‘yes’, the Lord will work wonders in our lives.
R: The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary
V: And she conceived by the Holy Spirit
As God once chose Mary to become the Mother of his Son through the message of an angel, so he chooses me this day, and invites me through the ministry of the Church or the example of another, to seek and do his will at this moment in my life. Hail Mary full of grace…
R: Behold the handmaid of the Lord
V: Be it be done unto me according to thy Word
Mary’s response to her invitation, ‘let it be done to me according to your Word’, opened her heart to God’s grace and all things became possible. Let my ‘yes’ today take away fear, as I embrace God’s will, and like Mary ‘ponder these things in my heart’. Hail Mary full of grace…
R: And the Word became flesh (Bow or genuflect)
V: And dwelt among us
At a moment in history, Mary’s faith-filled ‘yes’ conceived him, first in her heart, which then led to the birth of our Saviour. Through accepting him in my heart, enable me to recognise my role in bringing Christ to my sisters and brothers today. Hail Mary full of grace…
R: Pray for us most holy Mother of God
V: That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ
Let us pray: O Holy Mother of God, pray for us, and assist us as we dedicate ourselves this day. Your ‘yes’ at the Annunciation brought our Saviour Jesus into the world, and you invite us to contemplate the great mystery of the Incarnation, sharing your joy in announcing that ‘the Word was made flesh and lived among us.’ May our yes, this day, open our hearts to serve our sisters and brothers in this your Dowry, that they too may share our joy in the Good News that God walks among us. We make this prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Act of Entrustment Based on Prayer of Erasmus 1532, Dedication of England to the Mother of God 1893, Prayer for England, Cardinal Griffin’s Act of Consecration 1948, Act of Consecration St John Paul 1982.
PrayerO Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God and our most gentle Queen and Mother, look down in mercy upon England thy Dowry and upon us all who greatly hope and trust in thee.
ResponseWe your faithful people assembled here offer you this country in which we live. Once it was yours, all its children were your children and you were honoured throughout England as its Protectress and its Queen. Again do we consecrate it as your Dowry, and entrust it to your maternal care.
PrayerBy thee it was that Jesus our Saviour and our hope was given unto the world; and he has given thee to us that we might hope still more.
ResponseTo you we entrust the Church, which invokes you as Mother. On earth you preceded her in the pilgrimage of faith. Comfort her in her difficulties and trials. Make her always the sign and instrument of intimate union with God and of the unity of the whole human race. To you, Mother of the human family, and of the nations, we confidently entrust the whole of humanity with its hopes and fears. Let it not lack the light of true wisdom. Guide it to seek freedom and justice for all. Direct its steps in the ways of peace. Enable all to meet Christ, the Way, the Truth and the Life.
PrayerPlead for us thy children, whom thou didst receive and accept at the foot of the Cross, O sorrowful Mother.
ResponsePray, O Holy Mother of God, for the conversion of heart of the people of England, restoration of the sick, consolation for the troubled, repentance of sinners, peace to the departed. Queen of Peace, pray for us and give to the world the peace for which all peoples are longing, peace in the truth, justice and charity of Christ. Give peace to the nations and to the souls of all, that in peace, the Kingdom of God may prevail.
PrayerIntercede for our separated brethren, that with us in the one true fold they may be united to the supreme Shepherd, the Vicar of thy Son.
ResponseMay your prayers bring back this country to the fullness of its ancient faith. May your intercession lead us to a closer union with your divine Son. We offer you all the people of this land, especially those who know you so little or not at all. May all in our country know Christ, the light of the world and its only Saviour.
PrayerPray for us all, dear Mother, that by faith fruitful in good works we may all deserve to see and praise God, together with thee, in our heavenly home.
ResponseMay we who follow your Son, be fruitful in the good work of building a culture of life in our world, where all human life is treasured and the gift of God’s creation is respected and cared for, so that all may share the fruits of Gods generous love.
V: Pray for us O Holy Mother of God: That we may be made worthy of the Promises of Christ.
O Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, and our most gentle Queen and Mother, look down in mercy upon England, thy Dowry, and upon us all who greatly hope and trust in thee. By thee it was that Jesus, our Saviour and our hope, was given unto the world; and he has given thee to us that we might hope still more. Plead for us thy children, whom thou didst receive and accept at the foot of the cross, O sorrowful Mother, intercede for our separated brethren, that with us in the one true fold they may be united to the Chief Shepherd, the Vicar of thy Son. Pray for us all, dear Mother, that by faith, fruitful in good works, we may all deserve to see and praise God, together with thee in our heavenly home. Amen.

Signed version (BSL)

Shell Rocha from the Caritas Westminster Deaf Service has kindly produced a British Sign Language (BSL) version of the Cardinal’s re-dedication prayers.

2 Catholic Cardinals Test Positive for Coronavirus - Pope Francis' Vicar of Rome Card. De Donatis is Hospitalized and Card. Ouédraogo of Africa

Two Catholic Cardinals have tested positive with the Coronavirus in one day. According to Vatican News the Vicar of Rome tests positive for coronavirus, Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, the Pope’s Vicar for Rome, says he is praying “for those who suffer”, after being diagnosed with Covid-19.
Cardinal Philippe Ouédraogo, Archbishop of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) is also positive.
On the same day, the diocese of Ouagadougou (in Burkina Faso, Africa) announced that its bishop, Cardinal Philippe Ouédraogo, 75, had also tested positive. They are the first two cardinals affected by the disease.
Pope Francis’ Vicar General for the Diocese of Rome, Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, was admitted to Rome’s Gemelli Hospital on Monday after testing positive for Covid-19.

Vatican News said the Cardinal is running a fever, but his general condition is currently good, and he has begun antiviral therapy. Cardinal De Donatis, following procedures in place to halt the spread of the coronavirus, has had fewer meetings with his staff at the Lateran Palace recently. As a precaution, his closest collaborators are in isolation. The Cardinal noted that he has not been to the Vatican in recent days, and has been in contact with the Pope only by phone.

“I am also experiencing this trial, I am at peace and confident”, Cardinal De Donatis said. “I entrust myself to the Lord, and to the prayers of all you, dear faithful of Rome!”

He added, “I live this moment as an opportunity that Providence has given me to share in the sufferings of so many brothers and sisters. I am offering my prayer for them, for the whole diocesan community, and for the people of the City of Rome”.

Since 11 March, Cardinal De Donatis has been celebrating a Mass every evening at the Sanctuary of Divine Love in Rome. The Mass is broadcast on the Bishops’ Conference television channel, TV2000, and is live-streamed on the Diocese of Rome’s Facebook page.

During the first Mass from the Sanctuary, on the occasion of the Pope’s act of entrustment to Mary, the Cardinal said that “the antidote, the therapy for the suffering of the present moment, is to entrust oneself to the hands of God. We are in His hands, and no one can tear us away from Him”.

 Last week, Salesian Bishop Angelo Moreschi, the Apostolic Vicar of Ethiopia’s Gambella Vicariate, became the first Bishop in the world to die of the disease.

The Holy See, in solidarity with Italy, will be flying flags at half-mast on Tuesday, as a sign of mourning. The gesture is an expression of the Church's closeness to the victims of Covid-19 in Italy and around the world, as well as to their families and to those who are generously fighting to end the pandemic.

Edited from Vatican News and La Croix Intl.

RIP Fr. Charles Okeke-Odogwu a Catholic Priest Found Dead in his Car in Nigeria

Nigeria: Catholic Priest Found Dead in Car. The Premium Times of Nigeria reports that the body of a Catholic priest, Charles Okeke-Odogwu, has been discovered in Anambra State. Until his death, he was the Vicar of Holy Cross Parish, Oroma-Etiti in Anam, Anambra West Local Government Area of the state. His body was found in his car at the front of the Vicarage gate. It was gathered that the deceased was found dead in the driver's seat before the gate of the vicarage. A family source said the priest who managed Fr. Ohai Memorial Secondary School located in the area, had attended a regional meeting of his Archdiocese on Monday, March 23 before the incident happened. "He participated actively at the meeting and did not show any sign of illness before the the sad incident. He had vomited in the car before he died, "the source added. Though the cause of his death was still unclear, a resident of the area said he might have died of a heart attack. "He was found next morning in his car that was still steaming," he said. Police spokesperson, Haruna Mohammed, said the Commissioner of Police, John Abang, has directed the divisional police officer in the area to investigate the report. "It seems there was no official report on such incident but the CP has directed the DPO to find out please," he said. Source:

Wow Catholic Archbishop in Plane over Brazil Blesses the Nation with the Eucharist and Virgin Mary Statue

AMERICA/BRAZIL - In a plane with the ostensory or with the statue of the Virgin Mary to bless the Brazilians during the pandemic
Tuesday, 31 March 2020

Goiania (Agenzia Fides) – In order to invoke the health and protection of the people of God, after the blessing imparted by Pope Francis Urbi et Orbi on Friday, March 27, from St. Peter's Square, some dioceses in Brazil promoted particular initiatives to bless the faithful, invite to prayer and show closeness even in this period of isolation due to covid 19.
In Goiânia, Archbishop Washington Cruz flew over the capital and metropolitan region with the Blessed Sacrament: "Jesus Christ, resurrection and life, make us strong in faith and grant us the gift of healing, the gift of overcoming this pandemic", he said in a video released by the CNBB. The Archbishop commented his experience with these words: "It was an experience of my smallness, of my nothingness. It was Jesus the Sacrament who flew over Goiânia. I was just an instrument that carried it.
It was He who certainly blessed Goiânia, the surroundings, the archdiocese, Brazil and the whole world".
In Belém the pilgrim image of Nossa Senhora de Nazaré, patroness of the state of Pará and considered Queen of the Amazon, was transported by helicopter, by the rector of the Marian Basilica, Father Luiz Carlos Maria Gonçalves, and by some faithful who prayed with the Rosary "pleading for the blessings and protection of the Virgin of Nazaré", according to a video shared on social networks. The Archbishop of Belém, Alberto Taveira Corrêa, said it was a very positive experience, "which helped many people to feel the protection of Our Lady in this very difficult period". "I hope many other initiatives - he added - will help us fight with the most powerful weapons we have: prayer, penance, fasting, charity, which are the weapons of Lent and which can help us overcome this challenge".
Yesterday, March 30, the archdiocese of São Luís was flown over by the image of Nossa Senhora da Vitória, patron saint of the city and to whom the metropolitan cathedral is dedicated, invoking her intercession so that "God frees us from the evil that afflicts Brazil and the world". Parish priest of the cathedral, Father Roney Rocha Carvalho on board, and during the trip, all the faithful were invited to pray the rosary, "thus forming a large prayer chain in the city". (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 31/3/2020)

Pope Francis Prays for Homeless, at Mass and says "Just contemplate, pray and thank." - Full Video



"Look at the crucifix in the light of redemption"

Tuesday, March 31, 2020


Let us pray today for those who are homeless, at this moment when we ask to be inside the house. For the society of men and women to become aware of this reality and to help, and the Church to welcome them.


The snake is certainly not a nice animal: it is always associated with evil. Even in revelation, the serpent is precisely the animal that the devil uses to induce sin. In the Apocalypse the devil is called "ancient snake", the one who from the beginning bites, poisons, destroys, kills. This is why it cannot succeed. If you want to succeed as someone who offers beautiful things, these are fantasy: we believe them and so we sin. This is what happened to the people of Israel: they did not endure the journey. He was tired. And the people said against God and against Moses. It's always the same music, isn't it? "Why did you take us out of Egypt? To make us die in this desert? Because there is no bread or water and we are sick of this light food, manna "(cf. Nm 21.4-5). And the imagination - we read it in recent days - always goes to Egypt: "But, we were fine there, we ate well ...". And also, it seems that the Lord did not endure the people at this time. He became angry: the wrath of God shows up at times ... And "then the Lord sent among the people burning snakes which bit the people and died. A large number of Israelites died" (Nm 21.5). moment, the serpent is always the image of evil: the people see sin in the serpent, see what has done evil in the serpent. And he comes from Moses and says: "We have sinned because we have spoken against the Lord and against you . Plead with the Lord to drive these snakes away from us "(Nm 21,7). Repent. This is the story in the desert. Moses prayed for the people and the Lord said to Moses:" Make a snake and put it on a pole of metal. Whoever has been bitten and looks at him, will remain alive "(Nm 21,8).

I am thinking: is this not an idolatry? There is the snake, there, an idol, who gives me health ... It is not clear. Logically, it is not clear, because this is a prophecy, this is an announcement of what will happen. Because we also heard as a close prophecy in the Gospel: "When you have exalted the Son of man, then you will know that I am and that I do nothing by myself" (Jn 8:28). Jesus raised: on the cross. Moses makes a snake and raises it up. Jesus will be raised up, like the serpent, to give salvation. But the crux of the prophecy is precisely that Jesus made himself a sin for us. He did not sin: he became sin. As St. Peter says in his Letter: "He carried our sins upon himself" (cf. 1Pt 2,24) And when we look at the crucifix, we think of the Lord who suffers: all that is true. But let's stop before we get to the center of that truth: at this moment, You seem the greatest sinner, You made yourself a sin. He has taken upon himself all our sins, has annihilated himself until now. The cross, it is true, is a torture, there is the revenge of the doctors of the Law, of those who did not want Jesus: all this is true. But the truth that comes from God is that He came into the world to take our sins upon himself to the point of becoming sin. All sin. Our sins are there.

We have to get used to looking at the crucifix in this light, which is the truest, it is the light of redemption. In Jesus suffering for sin we see the total defeat of Christ. He doesn't pretend to die, he doesn't pretend not to suffer, alone, abandoned ... "Father, why did you abandon me?" (cf. Mt 27.46; Mk 15.34). A snake: I am raised like a snake, like that which is all sin.

It is not easy to understand this and, if we think, we will never reach a conclusion. Just contemplate, pray and thank.

Prayer to make spiritual communion:

People who cannot communicate now make spiritual communion.

My Jesus, I believe that you are truly present in the Blessed Sacrament of the altar. I love you above all things and I desire you in my soul. Since I cannot receive you sacramentally now, at least spiritually come to my heart. As already come, I embrace you and I join everything with you. Don't let it ever separate me from you. Amen.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Holy Mass Online - Readings and Video : Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - #Eucharist in Lent - Your Virtual Church

Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Lent
Lectionary: 252
Reading 1NM 21:4-9
From Mount Hor the children of Israel set out on the Red Sea road,
to bypass the land of Edom.
But with their patience worn out by the journey,
the people complained against God and Moses,
“Why have you brought us up from Egypt to die in this desert,
where there is no food or water?
We are disgusted with this wretched food!”
In punishment the LORD sent among the people saraph serpents,
which bit the people so that many of them died.
Then the people came to Moses and said,
“We have sinned in complaining against the LORD and you.
Pray the LORD to take the serpents away from us.”
So Moses prayed for the people, and the LORD said to Moses,
“Make a saraph and mount it on a pole,
and whoever looks at it after being bitten will live.”
Moses accordingly made a bronze serpent and mounted it on a pole,
and whenever anyone who had been bitten by a serpent
looked at the bronze serpent, he lived.

Responsorial Psalm102:2-3, 16-18, 19-21

R.    (2)  O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.
O LORD, hear my prayer,
and let my cry come to you.
Hide not your face from me
in the day of my distress.
Incline your ear to me;  
in the day when I call, answer me speedily.
R.    O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.
The nations shall revere your name, O LORD,
and all the kings of the earth your glory,
When the LORD has rebuilt Zion
and appeared in his glory;
When he has regarded the prayer of the destitute,
and not despised their prayer.
R.    O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.
Let this be written for the generation to come,
and let his future creatures praise the LORD:
“The LORD looked down from his holy height,
from heaven he beheld the earth,
To hear the groaning of the prisoners,
to release those doomed to die.”
R.    O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.

Verse Before The Gospel

The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower;
all who come to him will live forever.

GospelJN 8:21-30

Jesus said to the Pharisees:
“I am going away and you will look for me,
but you will die in your sin.
Where I am going you cannot come.”
So the Jews said,
“He is not going to kill himself, is he,
because he said, ‘Where I am going you cannot come’?”
He said to them, “You belong to what is below,
I belong to what is above.
You belong to this world,
but I do not belong to this world.
That is why I told you that you will die in your sins.
For if you do not believe that I AM,
you will die in your sins.”
So they said to him, “Who are you?”
Jesus said to them, “What I told you from the beginning.
I have much to say about you in condemnation.
But the one who sent me is true,
and what I heard from him I tell the world.”
They did not realize that he was speaking to them of the Father.
So Jesus said to them,
“When you lift up the Son of Man,
then you will realize that I AM,
and that I do nothing on my own,
but I say only what the Father taught me.
The one who sent me is with me.
He has not left me alone,
because I always do what is pleasing to him.”
Because he spoke this way, many came to believe in him.
Prayer to make spiritual communion:

People who cannot communicate now make spiritual communion.

At your feet, O my Jesus I bow down and offer you the repentance of my contrite heart, which abysses itself into its nothingness and Your holy presence. I adore you in the Sacrament of Your love, the ineffable Eucharist. I wish to receive you in the poor home that my heart offers you. In anticipation of the happiness of sacramental communion, I want to possess you in spirit. Come to me, oh my Jesus, that I come to you. May Your love inflame my whole being, for life and death. I believe in you, I hope in you, I love you. So be it.