Sunday, November 22, 2020

Holy Mass Online - Readings and Video : Monday, November 23, 2020 - #Eucharist in Your Virtual Church



Monday of the Thirty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time
 Lectionary: 503 
 Reading 1 Rv 14:1-3, 4b-5

 I, John, looked and there was the Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand who had his name and his Father’s name written on their foreheads. I heard a sound from heaven like the sound of rushing water or a loud peal of thunder. The sound I heard was like that of harpists playing their harps. They were singing what seemed to be a new hymn before the throne, before the four living creatures and the elders. No one could learn this hymn except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been ransomed from the earth. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They have been ransomed as the first fruits of the human race for God and the Lamb. On their lips no deceit has been found; they are unblemished. 
 Responsorial Psalm Ps 24:1bc-2, 3-4ab, 5-6 R. (see 6) Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face.

 The LORD’s are the earth and its fullness; the world and those who dwell in it. For he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers. 
 R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD? or who may stand in his holy place? He whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean, who desires not what is vain. R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. He shall receive a blessing from the LORD, a reward from God his savior. Such is the race that seeks for him, that seeks the face of the God of Jacob. 
 R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. 

 Alleluia Mt 24:42a, 44
 R. Alleluia, alleluia. Stay awake! For you do not know when the Son of Man will come. R. Alleluia, alleluia. Gospel LK 21:1-4 
When Jesus looked up he saw some wealthy people putting their offerings into the treasury and he noticed a poor widow putting in two small coins. He said, “I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.”
Prayer to Make a 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 may 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 November 23 : St. Clement I a Pope - Patron of Boatmen, Sailors, Sick children, Stonecutters and Author of Letter to the Church of Corinth



St. Clement I
POPE
Born:
Rome, Italy
Died:
101
Patron of: boatmen, marble workers, mariners, sailors, sick children, stonecutters, watermen
Saint Clement I, byname Clement Of Rome, Latin Clemens Romanus   (born, Rome—died 1st century ad, Rome; feast day November 23), first Apostolic Father, pope from 88 to 97, or from 92 to 101, supposed third successor of St. Peter. According to the early Christian writer Tertullian, he was consecrated by Peter. Bishop St. Irenaeus of Lyon lists him as a contemporary of the Apostles and witness of their preaching. Bishop Eusebius of Caesarea dates his pontificate from 92 to 101. His martyrdom is legendary, and he has been hypothetically identified with the Clement mentioned in Phil. 4:3. His attribute is an anchor, to which he was tied and cast into the sea, according to spurious tales.

The authorship of the Letter to the Church of Corinth (I Clement), the most important 1st-century document other than the New Testament, has been traditionally ascribed to him. Still extant, it was written to settle a controversy among the Corinthians against their church leaders and reveals that Clement considered himself empowered to intervene (the first such action known) in another community’s affairs. His Letter achieved almost canonical status and was regarded as Scripture by many 3rd- and 4th-century Christians.
Numerous Clementine writings—those that at various times were added to the first Letter—show the high regard for Clement in the early church. He is credited with transmitting to the church theOrdinances of the Holy Apostles Through Clement (Apostolic Constitutions), which, reputedly drafted by the Apostles, is the largest collection of early Christian ecclesiastical law; the constitutions are now believed, however, to have been written in Syria c. 380. W.K. Lowther Clarke’s edition of The First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians was published in 1937. Text from Britannica

Prayers to SHARE to the Patroness of Music with Hymn - Novena to Saint Cecilia



Saint Cecilia is the patroness of music. 

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

Pope Francis at Mass Says "Let us look to Jesus and ask him for the courage to choose what is best" on Solemnity of Christ the King - FULL TEXT + Video


 

HOLY MASS FOR THE HANDING OVER OF THE WYD CROSS

HOMILY OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS

Saint Peter's Basilica
Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe - Sunday, 22 November 2020

 

We have just heard the page of the Matthew’s Gospel that comes immediately before the account of Christ’s Passion. Before pouring out his love for us on the cross, Jesus shares his final wishes. He tells us that the good we do to one of our least brothers and sisters – whether hungry or thirsty, a stranger, in need, sick or in prison – we do to him (cf. Mt 25:37-40). In this way, the Lord gives us his “gift list” for the eternal wedding feast he will share with us in heaven. Those gifts are the works of mercy that make our life eternal. Each of us can ask: Do I put these works into practice? Do I do anything for someone in need? Or do I do good only for my loved ones and my friends? Do I help someone who cannot give anything back to me? Am I the friend of a poor person? And there are many other similar questions we can ask ourselves. “There I am”, Jesus says to you, “I am waiting for you there, where you least think and perhaps may not even want to look: there, in the poor”. I am there, where the prevailing mentality, according to which life is good if it is good for me, least expects me to be. I am there. Jesus also says these words to you, young people, as you strive to realize your dreams in life.

I am there. Jesus spoke these words centuries ago, to a young soldier. He was eighteen years old and not yet baptized. One day he saw a poor man who was begging people for help but received none, since “everyone walked by”. That young man, “seeing that others were not moved to compassion, understood that the poor person was there for him. Yet he had nothing on him, only his uniform. He cut his cloak in two and gave half to the poor person, and was met with mocking laughter from some of the bystanders. The following night he had a dream: he saw Jesus, wearing the half of the cloak he had wrapped around the poor person, and he heard him say: ‘Martin, you covered me with this cloak’” (cf. SULPICIUS SEVERUS, Vita Martini, III). Saint Martin was that young man. He had that dream because, without knowing it, he had acted like the righteous in today’s Gospel.

Dear young people, dear brothers and sisters, let us not give up on great dreams. Let us not settle only for what is necessary. The Lord does not want us to narrow our horizons or to remain parked on the roadside of life. He wants us to race boldly and joyfully towards lofty goals. We were not created to dream about vacations or the weekend, but to make God’s dreams come true in this world. God made us capable of dreaming, so that we could embrace the beauty of life. The works of mercy are the most beautiful works in life. They go right to the heart of our great dreams. If you are dreaming about real glory, not the glory of this passing world but the glory of God, this is the path to follow. Read today’s Gospel passage again and reflect on it. For the works of mercy give glory to God more than anything else. Listen carefully: the works of mercy give glory to God more than anything else. In the end we will be judged on the works of mercy.

Yet how do we begin to make great dreams come true? With great choices. Today’s Gospel speaks to us about this as well. Indeed, at the last judgement, the Lord will judge us on the choices we have made. He seems almost not to judge, but merely to separate the sheep from the goats, whereas being good or evil depends on us. He only draws out the consequences of our choices, brings them to light and respects them. Life, we come to see, is a time for making robust, decisive, eternal choices. Trivial choices lead to a trivial life; great choices to a life of greatness. Indeed, we become what we choose, for better or for worse. If we choose to steal, we become thieves. If we choose to think of ourselves, we become self-centred. If we choose to hate, we become angry. If we choose to spend hours on a cell phone, we become addicted. Yet if we choose God, daily we grow in his love, and if we choose to love others, we find true happiness. Because the beauty of our choices depends on love. Remember this because it is true: the beauty of our choices depends on love. Jesus knows that if we are self-absorbed and indifferent, we remain paralyzed, but if we give ourselves to others, we become free. The Lord of life wants us to be full of life, and he tells us the secret of life: we come to possess it only by giving it away. This is a rule of life: we come to possess life, now and in eternity, only by giving it away.

It is true that there are obstacles that can make our choices difficult: fear, insecurity, so many unanswered questions… Love, however, demands that we move beyond these, and not keep wondering why life is the way it is, and expecting answers to fall down from heaven. The answer has come: it is the gaze of the Father who loves us and who has sent us his Son. No, love pushes us to go beyond the why, and instead to ask for whom, to pass from asking, “Why am I alive?” to “For whom am I living?” From “Why is this happening to me?” to “Whom can I help?” For whom? Not just for myself! Life is already full of choices we make for ourselves: what to study, which friends to have, what home to buy, what interests or hobbies to pursue. We can waste years thinking about ourselves, without ever actually starting to love. Alessandro Manzoni offered a good piece of advice: “We ought to aim rather at doing well then being well: and thus we should come, in the end, to be even better” (I Promessi Sposi [The Betrothed], Chapter XXXVIII).

Not only doubts and questions can undermine great and generous choices, but many other obstacles as well every day. Feverish consumerism can overwhelm our hearts with superfluous things. An obsession with pleasure may seem the only way to escape problems, yet it simply postpones them. A fixation with our rights can lead us to neglect our responsibilities to others. Then, there is the great misunderstanding about love, which is more than powerful emotions, but primarily a gift, a choice and a sacrifice. The art of choosing well, especially today, means not seeking approval, not plunging into a consumerist mentality that discourages originality, and not giving into the cult of appearances. Choosing life means resisting the “throwaway culture” and the desire to have “everything now”, in order to direct our lives towards the goal of heaven, towards God’s dreams. To choose life is to live, and we were born to live, not just get by. A young man like yourselves, Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, said this: “I want to live, not just get by”.

Each day, in our heart, we face many choices. I would like to give you one last piece of advice to help train you to choose well. If we look within ourselves, we can see two very different questions arising. One asks, “What do I feel like doing?” This question often proves misleading, since it suggests that what really counts is thinking about ourselves and indulging in our wishes and impulses. The question that the Holy Spirit plants in our hearts is a very different one: not “What do you feel like doing?” but “What is best for you?”  That is the choice we have to make daily: what do I feel like doing or what is best for me? This interior discernment can result either in frivolous choices or in decisions that shape our lives – it depends on us. Let us look to Jesus and ask him for the courage to choose what is best for us, to enable us to follow him in the way of love. And in this way to discover joy. To live, and not just get by.


Remarks of the Holy Father at the Conclusion of Holy Mass

At the end of this Eucharistic celebration, I cordially greet all of you present and all those who join us through the media. A special greeting goes to the Panamanian and Portuguese young people, represented by the two delegations that will shortly take part in the significant ceremony of the passage of the Cross and the icon of Our Lady Salus Populi Romani, the symbols of the World Youth Days. This is an important step in the pilgrimage that will lead us to Lisbon in 2023.

And as we prepare for the next intercontinental edition of WYD, I would also like to renew its celebration in the local Churches. Thirty-five years after the establishment of WYD, after listening to various opinions and consulting the Dicastery for the Laity, the Family and Life, which is responsible for youth ministry, I have decided, beginning next year, to transfer the diocesan celebration of WYD from Palm Sunday to Christ the King Sunday. The centre of the celebration remains the Mystery of Jesus Christ the Redeemer of Man, as Saint John Paul II, the initiator and patron of WYD, always emphasized.

Dear young people, cry out with your life that Christ lives, that Christ reigns, that Christ is the Lord! If you keep silent, I tell you the very stones will cry out! (cf. Lk 19:40).

FULL TEXT + Source: Vatican.va - Image Source Screen Shot - Vatican Youtube Channel

Solemnity of Christ the King Explained with Novena + Consecration - Litany with Prayers to Share!


The last Sunday before Advent is the Feast of Christ the King. (22 Nov. in 2020) It signifies the end of the Liturgical Year (A). The new liturgical year (B) begins after this feast on the 1st Sunday of Advent.
The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, is referred to as the Feast of Christ the King. It was instituted in 1925 by Pope Pius XI in the Roman Catholic Church. 
Novena to Christ the King
Recite One Our Father, One Hail Mary and One Glory Be per day followed by the Novena Prayer:
O Lord our God, You alone are the Most Holy King and Ruler of all nations.
We pray to You, Lord, in the great expectation of receiving from You, O Divine King, mercy, peace, justice and all good things.
Protect, O Lord our King, our families and the land of our birth.
Guard us we pray Most Faithful One.
Protect us from our enemies and from Your Just Judgment
Forgive us, O Sovereign King, our sins against you.
Jesus, You are a King of Mercy.
We have deserved Your Just Judgment
Have mercy on us, Lord, and forgive us.
We trust in Your Great Mercy.
O most awe-inspiring King, we bow before You and pray;
May Your Reign, Your Kingdom, be recognized on earth.

Amen.

Consecration to Christ the King with Indulgence

 One may gain a plenary indulgence by the public recitation of the Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and we exhort all faithful Catholics to offer, or renew, their consecration to the Sacred Heart of our Sovereign Lord.
“The kingship and empire of Christ have been recognized in the pious custom, practiced by many families, of dedicating themselves to the Sacred Heart of Jesus; not only families have performed this act of dedication, but nations, too, and kingdoms. In fact, the whole of the human race was at the instance of Pope Leo XIII, in the Holy Year 1900, consecrated to the Divine Heart.
We institute the Feast of the Kingship of Our Lord Jesus Christ to be observed yearly throughout the whole world on the last Sunday of the month of October–the Sunday, that is, which immediately precedes the Feast of All Saints. We further ordain that the dedication of mankind to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which Our predecessor of saintly memory, Pope Pius X, commanded to be renewed yearly, be made annually on that day.”
Quas Primas, 
Encyclical of Pope Pius XI, December 11, 1925 On the Feast of Christ the King, this Act of Consecration is to be read solemnly with the Litany of the Sacred Heart before the blessed Sacrament exposed. Most sweet Jesus, Redeemer of the human race, look down upon us humbly prostrate before Thy altar. We are Thine, and Thine we wish to be; but, to be more surely united with Thee, behold each one of us freely consecrates himself today to Thy Most Sacred Heart.
Many indeed have never known Thee; many too, despising Thy precepts, have rejected Thee. Have mercy on them all, most merciful Jesus, and draw them to Thy Sacred Heart.
Be Thou King, O Lord, not only of the faithful who have never forsaken Thee, but also of the prodigal children who have abandoned Thee; grant that they may quickly return to their Father’s house lest they die of wretchedness and hunger.
Be Thou King of those who are deceived by erroneous opinions, or whom discord keeps aloof; call them back to the harbour of truth and unity of faith, so that soon there may be but one flock and one Shepherd.
Be Thou King of all those who are still involved in the darkness of idolatry or of Islamism; refuse not to draw them all into the light and kingdom of God. Turn Thine eyes of mercy toward the children of that race, once Thy chosen people: of old they called down upon themselves the Blood of the Saviour; may it now descend upon them a laver of redemption and of life.
Grant, O Lord, to Thy Church assurance of freedom and immunity from harm; give peace and order to all nations, and make the earth resound from pole to pole with one cry: Praise to the Divine Heart that wrought our salvation; to It be glory and Honour forever. Amen.


Litany to Christ the King



Lord, have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us, 
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.

God, our Heavenly Father, Who has made firm for all ages your Son's Throne, 
Have mercy on us.

God the Son, Jesus, our Victim-High Priest, True Prophet, and Sovereign King, 
Have mercy on us.

God the Holy Spirit, poured out upon us with abundant newness, 
Have mercy on us.

Holy Trinity, Three Persons yet One God in the Beauty of Your Eternal Unity, 
Have mercy on us.

O Jesus, our Eternal King,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, Most Merciful King,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, extending to us the Golden Scepter of Your Mercy,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, in Whose Great Mercy we have been given the Sacrament of Confession,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, Loving King Who offers us Your Healing Grace,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, our Eucharistic King,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, the King foretold by the prophets,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King of Heaven and earth,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King and Ruler of All Nations,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, Delight of the Heavenly Court,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Most Compassionate toward Your subjects,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King from Whom proceeds all authority,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, in whom, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, we are One,
Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Whose Kingdom is not of this world,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Whose Sacred Heart burns with Love for all mankind,
Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who is the Beginning and the End, the Alpha and the Omega,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who has given us Mary, the Queen, to be our dear Mother,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who will come upon the clouds of Heaven with Power and Great Glory,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Whose Throne we are to approach with confidence,
Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King truly present in the Most Blessed Sacrament,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who made Mary the Mediatrix of All Graces,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who made Mary Co-Redemptrix, Your partner in the Plan of Salvation,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who desires to heal us of all division and disunity,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King wounded by mankind's indifference,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who gives the balm of Your Love with which to console Your Wounded Heart,
 Reign in our hearts.
O Jesus, King Who is the Great I AM within us, our Wellspring of Pure Delight,
 Reign in our hearts.


Jesus, King of All Nations, True Sovereign of all earthly powers,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, subjecting under Your feet forever the powers of hell
 , May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, the Light beyond all light, enlightening us in the darkness that surrounds us, 
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Whose Mercy is so Great as to mitigate the punishments our sins deserve
,  May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, recognized by the Magi as the True King,
May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, the Only Remedy for a world so ill,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Who blesses with Peace those souls and nations that acknowledge You as True King,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Who Mercifully sends us your Holy Angels to protect us,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Whose Chief Prince is Saint Michael the Archangel,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Who teaches us that to reign is to serve,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Just Judge Who will separate the wicked from the good,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, before Whom every knee shall bend,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Whose Dominion is an everlasting Dominion,
May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Lamb who will Shepherd us,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Who after having destroyed every sovereignty,
 May we serve You.  authority and power, will hand over the Kingdom to Your God and Father,
Jesus, King of All Nations, Whose Reign is without end,
 May we serve You. 
Jesus, King of All Nations, Whose kindness toward us is steadfast, and whose fidelity endures forever,
 May we serve You. 


Eternal Father, Who has given us Your Only Begotten Son, to be our Redeemer, One True Mediator, and Sovereign King, 
We praise and thank You.Loving Jesus, Sovereign King, Who humbled Yourself for Love of us and took the form of a servant, , We praise and thank You.

Holy Spirit, Third Person of the Trinity, Love of the Father and the Son, Who sanctifies us and gives us Life, We praise and thank You.

Mary, our Queen and Mother, who mediates to Jesus on our behalf,
Pray for us.

Mary, our Queen and Mother, through whom all Grace come to us, 
Pray for us.

Mary, our Queen and Mother, Singular Jewel of the Holy Trinity,
  We love You.

Holy Angels and Saints of our Divine King,  
Pray for us and Protect us.

Amen.
 

Pope Francis says "...we celebrate the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe...with which the liturgical year closes is that which unfolds the mystery of Christ..." - Full Text at Angelus



ANGELUS

Saint Peter's Square
Sunday, 22 November 2020


 

Dear brothers and sisters, good afternoon!

Today we celebrate the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. The great parable with which the liturgical year closes is that which unfolds the mystery of Christ, the entire liturgical year. He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end of history; and today’s liturgy focuses on the “Omega”, that is, on the final goal. The meaning of history is understood by keeping its culmination before our eyes: the goal is also the end. And it is precisely this that Matthew accomplishes in this Sunday’s Gospel (25:31-46), placing Jesus’s discourse on the universal judgement at the end of His earthly life: He, the one whom men are about to condemn is, in reality, the supreme judge. In His death and resurrection, Jesus will manifest Himself as the Lord of History, the King of the Universe, the Judge of all. But the Christian paradox is that the Judge is not vested in the fearful trappings of royalty, but is the shepherd filled with meekness and mercy.

Jesus, in fact, in this parable of the final judgement, uses the image of a shepherd, He picks up these images from the prophet Ezekiel who had spoken of God’s intervention in favour of His people against the evil pastors of Israel (see 34:1-10). They had been cruel exploiters, preferring to feed themselves rather than the flock; therefore, God Himself promises to personally take care of His flock, defending it from injustice and abuse. This promise God made on behalf of His people is fully accomplished in Jesus Christ, the shepherd: He Himself is the good shepherd. He Himself even said of Himself: “I am the good shepherd” (Jn 10:11, 14).

In today’s Gospel passage, Jesus identifies Himself not only with the king-shepherd, but also with the lost sheep, we can speak of a double identity: the king-shepherd, and also Jesus and the sheep: that is, He identifies Himself with the least and most in need of His brothers and sisters. And He thus indicates the criterion of the judgement: it will be made on the basis of concrete love given or denied to these persons, because He Himself, the judge, is present in each one of them. He is the judge. He is God and Man, but He is also the poor one, He is hidden and present in the person of the poor people that He mentions: right there. Jesus says: “Truly, I say to you, as you did it (or did it not) to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it (you did it not) to me” (vv. 40, 45). We will be judged on love. The judgement will be on love, not on feelings, no: we will be judged on works, on compassion that becomes nearness and kind help. Have I drawn near to Jesus present in the persons of the sick, the poor, the suffering, the imprisoned, of those who are hungry and thirsty for justice? Do I draw near to Jesus present there? This is the question for today.

Therefore, at the end of the world, the Lord will inspect the flock, and he will do so not only from the perspective of the shepherd, but also from the perspective of the sheep, with whom He has identified Himself. And He will ask us: “Were you a little bit like a shepherd as myself?” “Where you a shepherd to me who was present in those people who were in need, or were you indifferent?” Brothers and sisters, let us look at the logic of indifference, of those who come to mind immediately. Looking away when we see a problem. Let us remember the parable of the Good Samaritan. That poor man, wounded by the brigands, thrown to the ground, between life and death, he was alone. A priest passed by, saw, and went on his way. He looked the other way. A Levite passed by, saw and looked the other way. I, before my brothers and sisters in need, am I indifferent like the priest, like the Levite and look the other way? I will be judged on this: on how I drew near, how I looked on Jesus present in those in need. This is the logic, and I am not saying it: Jesus says it. “What you did to that person and that person and that person, you did it to me. And what you did not do to that person and that person and that person, you did not do it to me, because I was there”. May Jesus teach us this logic, this logic of being close, of drawing near to Him, with love, to the person who is suffering most.

Let us ask the Virgin Mary to teach us to reign by serving. The Madonna, assumed into Heaven, received the royal crown from her Son because she followed Him faithfully – she is the first disciple – on the way of Love. Let us learn from her to enter God’s Kingdom even now through the door of humble and generous service. And letus return home with this phrase only: “I was present there. Thank you, or you forgot me”.


After reciting the Angelus the Holy Father continued:

Dear brothers and sisters,

I want to send a special thought to the populations of Campania and Basilicata fourty years after the disastrous earthquake whose epicenter was in Irpinia and which sowed death and destruction. Forty years already. That dramatic event, whose wounds have not yet healed, highlighted the generosity and solidarity of the Italian people. Testimony of this are the many twinnings between areas where earthquakes have it and those of the North and Central Italy, whose bonds still endure. These initiatives have favoured the difficult journey of reconstruction, and above all fraternity between the various communities on the Peninsula.

And I greet all of you, people from Rome, pilgrims, who notwithstanding the current difficulties and always respecting the rules, come to St Peter’s Square.

A special greeting to the families in this period who are struggling. Regarding this, think of the many families who find themselves in difficulty in this moment, because they do not have work, they have lost their job, they have one or two children… And at times, with a bit of shame, do not know what to make of this. But you are the ones who need to go and look where there is need. Where Jesus is, where Jesus is in need. Do this!

I wish everyone a good Sunday. And there are many of you from the “Immacolata” Thank you!

And do not forget to pray for me. Enjoy your lunch and arrivederci!

FULL TEXT + Source: Vatican.va - Image Source - Vatican.va