Monday, March 9, 2020

Saint March 10 : St. John Ogilvie a Jesuit Priest of Scotland who was Martyred for his Faith - #Jesuits

St John Ogilvie was a Jesuit priest, martyred for his faith at Glasgow on 10th March 1615. He is the only canonized martyr of the Scottish Reformation.
The year 2015 is the 400th anniversary of the martyrdom of St John Ogilvie.
The Life of St John Ogilvie
John Ogilvie is born on 4th July at Drum-na-Keith, on the north east coast of Scotland . His father, Sir Walter Ogilvie, conformed to the state religion of Calvinism (established by act of parliament in 1560) and later known as Presbyterianism. His mother, Agnes Elphinstone, was a Catholic with two brothers in the Society of Jesus.
John's mother dies when he is three. Walter Ogilvie is remarried, to Mary Douglas.
Travels to Helmstedt (an illustrious Lutheran school founded in 1570) to begin his formal education, age 13.
Enrols at the Scots College (which had moved from Douai to Louvain), undergoes instruction from Cornelius a Lapide SJ and shortly becomes a Roman Catholic. Then continued his studies at the Jesuit university at Olmütz (Olomouc, founded 1570) in Bohemia because of the poverty of the Scots College.
Continues studies with the Benedictines at the Schottenkloster (Irish Monastery) Sankt JakobRatisbon (Regensburg).
Returns to Olmütz. Enters the novitiate of the Society of Jesus on 5 th November at Brno in Moravia.
Takes his first vows as a Jesuit on 26 th December at Graz in Austria and then teaches grammar in the Jesuit school (founded 1573) while studying philosophy at the Jesuit university (founded 1585/6).
Teaches grammar and humanities at Vienna (Jesuit college and university founded 1551).
Returns to study at Olmütz to study theology. Appointed Prefect of the Sodality of Our Lady.
Ordained priest at Paris and appointed confessor to the students of the Jesuit college at Rouen (founded 1593).
Returns to Scotland, landing at Leith, under the alias John Watson, horse dealer. He is accompanied by James Moffat SJ and the Capuchin Franciscan, John Campbell.
Ogilvie travels to London and on to France on a secret mission, seemingly under the protection of the King. He returns to Scotland in June. On 14th October, he is betrayed by Adam Boyd and arrested in Glasgow. Imprisoned and tortured for five months in Glasgow and Edinburgh.
John Ogilvie is executed at the Mercat Cross, Glasgow, on 10th March and is buried outside the city walls.
Ogilvie's Relatio (his own account of his arrest, imprisonment and torture, written in prison) is printed in various cities in Europe and circulated secretly in England and Scotland.
The process to have John Ogilvie declared 'Blessed' is begun but not completed for another 400 years.
22nd December - Declared 'Blessed' by Pope Pius XI.
17th October - Declared a 'Saint' by Pope Paul VI.
400th Anniversary of the martyrdom of St John Ogilvie SJ.
Feast Day
The feast day of St John Ogilvie SJ is celebrated on 10th March (the day of his martyrdom in 1615) in the Jesuit calendar of the British Province and in the dioceses of Scotland, and on14th October (the date of his arrest in 1614 and the beginning of his martyrdom) in the rest of the universal Church.
Shared from Jesuitinstitute

RIP Sister Germana - Famous Catholic Nun Known for Recipes Dies, at Age 82, who Wrote "When Angels Cook"

Sister Germana has died, who led a life with faith and recipes.  She was 82 years old at the time of her death and became famous with the book "When Angels Cook" but also gave advice to families. In 1999 she participated in the Sanremo Festival. Sister Germana died at Martina Consolaro on March 7, 2020 in Caronno Varesino. She became famous for cookbooks and annual agendas. She was also involved with newspapers, radio and TV. Thanks to the advice she gave to families, in an interview she said that she had "saved 100,000 marriages from crisis". Sister Germana's funeral will be held in strictly private form to follow the security and public protection provisions issued as a consequence of the Coronavirus emergency. We remember her affectionately with the words that she wrote for Easter a few years ago:

«I have a weight on my heart: how to say Happy Easter with what is going on in this world of ours? If we widen our gaze to all humanity, it seems increasingly difficult to find the place and time to exchange greetings for serenity and peace. And the more painful facts, the people involved and the suffering come closer, the more they upset us and also shake the faith. Who dies from bombs, who dies from faith, who falls victim to AIDS and hunger, who dies in the earthquake, who just born, who dies from drugs, who from alcohol ... Yet Easter is a passage that year after year it follows a path that comes from afar and takes us far beyond what we can imagine, desire, hope: a life beyond death, a life without end ... Utopia, dream? The choice to believe or not to believe is so personal and profound as to give an Easter meaning to our whole existence. This is why I wish you a happy Easter in the original sense which is what still responds to our hopes even in the midst of a reality that challenges our faith ».
Edited from Avenirre

Pope Francis offers Live Video Holy Mass for Coronavirus Victims and Recommends Confession explaining "we have to ‘examination of conscience’

Pope offers live-broadcast Mass for those suffering from coronavirus
On Monday morning, Pope Francis celebrated Mass at Casa Santa Marta which was broadcast live in order to demonstrate his nearness to those affected by the Covid-19 coronavirus.
By Vatican News

Yesterday, the Director of the Holy See Press Office announced that Pope Francis had decided that his 7:00 morning Mass would be broadcast in these days. This morning, Pope Francis introduced the liturgy saying “In these days, I will offer Mass for those who are sick from the coronavirus epidemic, for the doctors, nurses, volunteers who are helping them, for their families, for the elderly in nursing homes, for prisoners”. He then asked everyone to “pray together this week” the words of the entrance antiphon: “Redeem me, O Lord, and have mercy on me. My foot stands on level ground; I will bless the Lord in the assembly”.

The Pope then reflected on the first reading of the Second Monday of Lent from the Book of the Prophet Daniel (9:4-10). He characterized it as a “confession of sin”.

The people recognized that they had sinned. ‘We have sinned, been wicked and done evil; we have rebelled and departed from your commandments and your laws. We have not obeyed your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes, our fathers, and all the people of the land.' This is a confession of sin, a recognition that we have sinned.

Preparation for the Sacrament of Reconciliation
Pope Francis went on to describe that “when we prepare ourselves to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation, we have to do what is called an ‘examination of conscience’ “. He then differentiated between a list of sins done on an intellectual level and the heartfelt recognition of sin. It is not correct, the Pope said:

 to make a list of sins in the mind, to say ‘I’ve sinned’, then say them to the priest and then the priest forgives me. That’s like drawing up a to-do list or things I need to have or what I've done wrong. This remains in the mind. A true confession of sins must remain in the heart.

Moving from the mind to the heart
The Pope invites us to take a step forward so that we confess our “misery, but from the heart…. This is what Daniel, the Prophet, did: ‘Justice, O Lord, is on your side; we are shamefaced’ “.

When I realize that I have sinned, that I haven't prayed well, and I feel this in my heart, a sense of shame comes to us… Being ashamed of our sins as a grace we need to ask for. A person who has lost a sense of shame has lost a sense of moral judgement, has lost respect for others. The same thing regarding God…. ‘O LORD, we are shamefaced, like our kings, our princes, and our fathers, for having sinned against you. But yours, O Lord, our God’, first he said justice, now he said ‘compassion’.

We touch God’s heart
When a sense of shame is added to the memory that we have sinned, “this touches God’s heart”, Pope Francis explained. The sense of shame leads us to experience God’s mercy. Our confessions, then, will not consist in reading a list of sins, but in realizing what we “have done to a God who is so good, so compassionate, so righteous”.

Pope Francis then concluded his homily, saying:

Today, let us ask for the grace of feeling ashamed, of feeling ashamed for our sins. May the Lord grant this grace to all of us.

#BreakingNews Coronavirus Fears causes Patriarchate to restrict Mass in Holy Land with call to "unite in solidarity prayer." Full Text

The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem announced New Coronavirus measures on March 6. Millions of pilgrims visit Jerusalem and other holy cities such as Nazareth and Bethlehem every year. Archbishop Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Vatican's apostolic administrator, issued a statement. For Restrictions see below.

Latin Patriarchate extends new Coronavirus precautions to whole territory of Palestine
By: Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem - Published: March 06 Fri, 2020
Latin Patriarchate extends new Coronavirus precautions to whole territory of Palestine Available in the following languages:
To all the Faithful, Priests and Religious in Palestine
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
The Lord give you peace!
Only yesterday I had to communicate to our communities in the pastoral region of Bethlehem and Jericho some instructions following the decree of the Palestinian Ministry of Health.
Unfortunately, due to this situation, late in the evening President Abou Mazen was forced to declare a state of emergency throughout the country.
In compliance with the decree, I inform you that the instructions issued yesterday (March 5, 2020) for the pastoral region of Bethlehem, are extended to the entire territory of Palestine.
I invite the communities throughout the diocese, in Jordan, Palestine, Israel and Cyprus to unite in solidarity prayer. We pray first and foremost for the victims of this virus among us, and all over the world. Let us also pray for all who have been indirectly affected, those losing their jobs, for the many families who, in an already difficult and precarious situation, are now facing even greater economic and social difficulties.  During this time, let us remain united and supportive in prayer above all, and in all possible forms and means of mutual help and support.
We must not panic, but be aware that even in this present situation, we will pass this test.  We must not doubt, faith in Jesus helps us and always supports us. Christians are those who decide to live in love and not in fear.  We remain calm and firm in hope.
"Hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts…" (Rom. 5,5).
In Christ,

March 6, 2020
+Pierbattista Pizzaballa
Apostolic Administrator

Full Text Source:
To all the Faithful, Priests and Religious of the pastoral region of Bethlehem

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

May the Lord give you peace!

The Palestinian Ministry of Health has issued a decree declaring the closure of schools, mosques and churches for 14 days, in order to reduce, as much as possible, the spread of the Corona Virus. Unfortunately, this danger is already in our midst, and with a sense of responsibility, we must cooperate with the authorities and those responsible for public health for the good of all.
In compliance with the Ministry’s decree, I would like to give you some practical guidelines for our present situation, some of which have already been previously communicated. These guidelines apply to all parishes, all churches, chapels, religious houses and any other place of worship in the territory of Bethlehem, Beit Jala, Beit Sahour and Jericho.  All other locations are exempt from this provision. I hope it will not be necessary to extend it to other locations in the future.
  1. That churches remain open only for individual prayer.  Public celebrations within the church must be reduced by applying the rules set out in No. 3.
  2. This provision also applies to Sundays. In this case, the faithful are exempt from the obligation of Sunday Mass participation.
  3. Masses can be celebrated, but only for groups of no larger than 15, provided, that there is sufficient distance between people in the church (at least one meter). Otherwise, celebrations cannot be held.
  4. Communion is given only on the hand.
  5. Avoid giving the sign of peace with the hands or any other form of body contact.
  6. Empty the holy water fonts in churches and chapels. Instead, I recommend that it be distributed to houses for prayer.
  7. Funerals must be held in cemeteries, with as few people as possible, but not in enclosed spaces.
  8. The Via Crucis (Stations of the Cross) can be held in the squares or open spaces, if the weather is appropriate, otherwise it will be prayed within one’s own family.
  9. All ecclesial and pastoral activities, including youth groups, scouts and others are canceled.
  10. If conditions permit, I invite all parish priests to organize online streaming of Masses through the use of the media and to communicate this possibility to their parishioners. The same applies to catechism and other similar initiatives
  11. I leave it to individual parish priests to find ways and forms to allow the faithful to receive the Eucharist, the Bread that gives us strength for the journey, as in holding outdoor Masses or by other means, but always in accordance with the guidelines of the Ministry and with a sense of responsibility.
  12. We encourage everyone to pray at home, read the Bible, and continue to fast, asking God for mercy and forgiveness.

I invite all communities to pray for our brothers and sisters who are further isolated at this time. Prayer gives us strength.
I know that not everyone will agree to these guidelines, but I call on everyone to a sense of responsibility and unity. The strength which comes to us from communion with Christ Jesus, does not take away our human responsibility to protect, care for and heal our environment.
I wish everyone a blessed Lent!

In Christ,

+ Pierbattista Pizzaballa
Apostolic Administrator

Powerful Ancient Prayer for Lent by St. Ephrem "Lord and Master of my life, take from me the spirit of laziness, discouragement, lust..."

Lord and Master of my life, take from me the spirit of laziness, discouragement, lust of power, and idle talk. Instead grant to me, your servant, the spirit of purity, humility, patience, and love. My Lord and King, grant me the grace to be aware of my own sins and refrain from judging others; for you are blessed forever. Amen. 
 (Lenten Prayer of St. Ephrem)
Image Source: Google Images

Apostolic Vicar of UAE says "no need for us to...panic" over Coronavirus and Issues Guidelines and Recommends Prayer and the Rosary

Abu Dhabi, 4 March 2020

To all Priests, Religious, and Lay Faithful of the Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Arabia

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

May the Lord give you peace!

The threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has prompted many governments, institutions and dioceses to issue precautionary guidelines as this virus has rapidly spread to many countries around the world.

The UAE Govt. authorities are taking timely and effective precautions to greatly minimize the risk of the spread of the virus. There is, therefore, no need for us to be unduly alarmed or panic.

At the same time, it is good for us to follow the example of the civil authorities in taking certain precautions to limit the risks. This is also necessary because of our unique situation as a migrant Church, with faithful moving in and out of the country for professional or personal reasons.

Therefore, I have decided to issue the following guidelines to be observed in all our churches. These guidelines take effect from Friday, 6 March 2020 and will be effective until 2 April 2020. Before Palm Sunday we will re-evaluate them according to the
local situation and the advice of the competent civil authorities, and extend or update them as necessary.

1.  People with serious colds or other illness are advised to stay at home.

2. The faithful are to be advised to maintain personal hygiene, especially around coughing or sneezing. Hand sanitizers may be made available.

3. The recommendations of the authorities with regard to the cleaning of schools and public places should be followed. Disinfectants should be used for all cleaning purposes (special attention to washrooms, doors and other frequently touched surfaces).

4. The Holy Water fonts at the church entrance should be emptied.

5. Holy Communion will be received in the hand. The faithful should be instructed on the proper way to receive. It is recommended that Communion Ministers use hand-sanitizers to clean their hands before distributing Holy Communion.

6. In language Masses where the Sign of Peace is exchanged by touching hands, this is to be replaced by a bow of the head as is common at most other Masses.

7. Catechism classes will be suspended for the duration of the closure of private schools according to governmental guidelines (currently for one month from 8 March 2020).

8.  Approval of the Bishop should be sought for:
  • Organizing group pilgrimages to churches or to holy sites
  • National and international meetings of church groups
  • Organized group visits to the different churches of our Vicariate, as is common during Lent and Holy Week. It is recommended that such group visits be discouraged for the moment, and other ways of meeting the devotion of the people be offered by those with pastoral responsibility.

Further developments may prompt more stringent measures but for the time being Masses and other group activities are to be carried out as usual, observing due prudence and necessary precautions.

The current situation is a time for us as Catholics to give an example of faith, hope and charity in the midst of anxiety and uncertainty, especially through our Lenten practices. I recommend the intention for the end of the coronavirus and for all those affected to our public prayers (e.g. Rosary, Holy Hours, etc.) as well as to your personal prayers, self-denial and charity this Lent.

Let us pray, as we do at every Mass, for the protection and peace of the Lord,

"Deliver us, Lord, we pray from every evil,
graciously grant peace in our day,
that by the help of your mercy,
we may be always free from sin and safe from all distress,
as we await the blessed hope and the coming of our Saviour Jesus Christ."

+ Paul Hinder OFM Cap.
Apostolic Vicar of Southern Arabia

For additional resources on the Coronavirus Outbreak, click here.

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Monday, March 9, 2020 - #Eucharist in Lent

Monday of the Second Week in Lent
Lectionary: 230

Reading 1DN 9:4B-10

“Lord, great and awesome God,
you who keep your merciful covenant toward those who love you
and observe your commandments!
We have sinned, been wicked and done evil;
we have rebelled and departed from your commandments and your laws.
We have not obeyed your servants the prophets,
who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes,
our fathers, and all the people of the land.
Justice, O Lord, is on your side;
we are shamefaced even to this day:
we, the men of Judah, the residents of Jerusalem,
and all Israel, near and far,
in all the countries to which you have scattered them
because of their treachery toward you.
O LORD, we are shamefaced, like our kings, our princes, and our fathers,
for having sinned against you.
But yours, O Lord, our God, are compassion and forgiveness!
Yet we rebelled against you
and paid no heed to your command, O LORD, our God,
to live by the law you gave us through your servants the prophets.”

Responsorial Psalm79:8, 9, 11 AND 13

R.    (see 103:10a)  Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.
Remember not against us the iniquities of the past;
may your compassion quickly come to us,
for we are brought very low.
R.    Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.
Help us, O God our savior,
because of the glory of your name;
Deliver us and pardon our sins
for your name’s sake.
R.    Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.
Let the prisoners’ sighing come before you;
with your great power free those doomed to death.
Then we, your people and the sheep of your pasture,
will give thanks to you forever;
through all generations we will declare your praise.
R.    Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.

Verse Before The GospelJN 6:63C, 68C

Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life;
you have the words of everlasting life.

GospelLK 6:36-38

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
“Stop judging and you will not be judged.
Stop condemning and you will not be condemned.
Forgive and you will be forgiven.
Give and gifts will be given to you;
a good measure, packed together, shaken down, and overflowing,
will be poured into your lap.
For the measure with which you measure
will in return be measured out to you.”