Sunday, October 22, 2017

Saint October 23 : St. John of Capistrano : Patron of #Judges



St. John of Capistrano
FRANCISCAN PAPAL LEGATE AND HERO OF HUNGARY
Feast: October 23
Information:
Feast Day:
October 23
Born:
June 24, 1386, Capestrano, Abruzzi, Kingdom of Naples
Died:
October 23, 1456, Ilok, modern Croatia
Canonized:
1690 or 1724, Rome by either Pope Alexander VIII or Pope Benedict XIII
Patron of:
Jurists

Born at Capistrano, in the Diocese of Sulmona, Italy, 1385; died 23 October, 1456. His father had come to Naples in the train of Louis of Anjou, hence is supposed to have been of French blood, though some say he was of German origin. His father dying early, John owed his education to his mother. She had him at first instructed at home and then sent him to study law at Perugia, where he achieved great success under the eminent legist, Pietro de Ubaldis. In 1412 he was appointed governor of Perugia by Ladislaus, King of Naples, who then held that city of the Holy See. As governor he set himself against civic corruption and bribery. War broke out in 1416 between Perugia and the Malatesta. John was sent as ambassador to propose peace to the Malatesta, who however cast him into prison. It was during this imprisonment that he began to think more seriously about his soul. He decided eventually to give up the world and become a Franciscan Friar, owing to a dream he had in which he saw St. Francis and was warned by the saint to enter the Franciscan Order. John had married a wealthy lady of Perugia immediately before the war broke out, but as the marriage was not consummated he obtained a dispensation to enter religion, which he did 4 October, 1416.
 After he had taken his vows he came under the influence of St. Bernardine of Siena, who taught him theology: he had as his fellow-student St. James of the Marches. He accompanied St. Bernardine on his preaching tours in order to study his methods, and in 1420, whilst still in deacon's orders, was himself permitted to preach. But his apostolic life began in 1425, after he had received the priesthood. From this time until his death he laboured ceaselessly for the salvation of souls. He traversed the whole of Italy; and so great were the crowds who came to listen to him that he often had to preach in the public squares. At the time of his preaching all business stopped. At Brescia on one occasion he preached to a crowd of one hundred and twenty-six thousand people, who had come from all the neighbouring provinces. On another occasion during a mission, over two thousand sick people were brought to him that he might sign them with the sign of the Cross, so great was his fame as a healer of the sick. Like St. Bernardine of Siena he greatly propagated devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus, and, together with that saint, was accused of heresy because of this devotion. While he was thus carrying on his apostolic work, he was actively engaged in assisting St. Bernardine in the reform of the Franciscan Order. In 1429 John, together with other Observant friars, was cited to Rome on the charge of heresy, and he was chosen by his companions to defend their cause; the friars were acquitted by the commission of cardinals.
After this, Pope Martin V conceived the idea of uniting the Conventual Friars Minor and the Observants, and a general chapter of both bodies of Franciscans was convoked at Assisi in 1430. A union was effected, but it did not last long. The following year the Observants held a chapter at Bologna, at which John was the moving spirit. According to Gonzaga, John was about this time appointed commissary general of the Observants, but his name does not appear among the commissaries and vicars in Holzapfel's list (Manuale Hist. Ord. FF. Min., 624-5) before 1443. But it was owing to him that St. Bernardine was appointed vicar-general in 1438. Shortly after this, whilst visiting France he met St. Colette, the reformer of the Second Franciscan Order or Poor Clares, with whose efforts he entirely sympathized. He was frequently employed on embassies by the Holy See. In 1439 he was sent as legate to Milan and Burgundy, to oppose the claims of the antipope Felix V; in 1446 he was on a mission to the King of France; in 1451 he went at the request of the emperor as Apostolic nuncio to Austria. During the period of his nunciature John visited all parts of the empire, preaching and combatting the heresy of the Hussites; he also visited Poland at the request of Casimir IV. In 1454 he was summoned to the Diet at Frankfort, to assist that assembly in its deliberation concerning a crusade against the Turks for the relief of Hungary: and here, too, he was the leading spirit. When the crusade was actually in operation John accompanied the famous Hunyady throughout the campaign: he was present at the battle of Belgrade, and led the left wing of the Christian army against the Turks. He was beatified in 1694, and canonized in 1724. He wrote many books, chiefly against the heresies of his day.
SOURCE The Catholic Encyclopedia

Free Catholic Movie : Pope John Paul II : Stars Albert Finney #JPII

This film's timeline begins with the death of Pope John Paul I on September 29, 1978, and then flashes back to Karol Wojtyła as a young man growing up decades earlier in Wadowice, Poland. The storyline then returns slowly back to 1978, covering Wojtyła's early life, family relationships, his political involvements fighting against Nazism during World War II and struggling against post-World War II Communism in Poland, and his relationship and involvement in the Roman Catholic Church as he becomes a priest, a bishop, a cardinal, and is eventually installed as a pope.
 Pope John Paul II is a 1984 American biopic drama TV movie based on the life of Karol Wojtyła, from his early days as an activist in Poland to his installation as Pope John Paul II. Written by Christopher Knopf and directed by Herbert Wise, the film stars Albert Finney, Robert Austin, Caroline Bliss, Brian Cox, and John Forgeham. The film marks both Albert Finney's American television debut and the first script Finney had ever turned down upon initial reading.

#PopeFrancis "I urge everyone to live the joy of mission by witnessing the Gospel in the environs where each one lives and works.” FULL TEXT + Video at Angelus


Pope Francis FULL TEXT Angelus for October 22,2017 (Google Translation of Official Vatican Release- a better translation will be added when it becomes available) 
Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!

The Gospel of this Sunday (Mt 22,15-21) presents us with a new face to face between Jesus and his opponents. The theme addressed is the tribute to Caesar: a "thorny" issue, a tribute to Caesar about whether or not to pay the tax to the emperor of Rome, to whom Palestine was subjected to Jesus' time. The positions were different. Therefore, the question asked by the Pharisees: "Is it lawful or not, to pay the?" (V. 17) constitutes a trap for the Master. In fact, depending on how he responded, he would be accused of being or for or against Rome.

But Jesus, in this case too, responds calmly and takes advantage of the mischievous question of giving an important lesson, elevating itself to the controversy and opposing strata. It says to the Pharisees, "Show me the coin of tribute." They present him a money, and Jesus, watching the coin, asks, "Who is this image and the inscription?" The Pharisees can only answer: "Of Caesar". Then Jesus concludes: "Therefore, make Caesar the thing that is of Caesar, and to God what is of God" (cf. vv. 19-21). On the one hand, intimating to return to the emperor what belongs to him, Jesus states that paying the tax is not an act of idolatry, but an act due to earthly authority; on the other - and this is where Jesus gives the "stroke of wings" - recalling the primacy of God, asks him to do what he owes as Lord of man's life and history.

The reference to the image of Caesar, engraved in the coin, says that it is right to feel fully-with rights and duties-citizens of the state; but symbolically makes it think of the other image that is imprinted in every man: the image of God. He is the Lord of all, and we who have been created "in his image" belong first and foremost to Him. postage from the Pharisees, a more radical and vital question for each of us, a question we can make of: who do I belong to? To family, city, friends, school, work, politics, the state? Yes sure. But first of all - reminds us of Jesus - you belong to God. This is the fundamental membership. He has given you everything you are and what you have. Therefore, our lives, day by day, we can and must live it in the re-understanding of our fundamental membership and re-knowledge of our heart towards our Father, who creates each of us individually, unrepeatable, but always according to the image of his beloved Son, Jesus. It is a wonderful mystery.

The Christian is called to commit concretely in human and social realities without opposing "God" and "Caesar"; opposing God and Caesar would be a fundamentalist attitude. The Christian is called upon to engage concretely in earthly realities, but enlightening them with the light that comes from God. Priority trust in God and hope in him do not lead to an escape from reality, but rather to make God's work operative to him . That is why the believer looks at the future reality, that of God, to live the earthly life in fullness, and to respond with courage to his challenges.

The Virgin Mary helps us to live always in accordance with the image of God we bring in us, in, and also our contribution to the construction of the earthly city.
After the Angelus

Dear brothers and sisters,

Yesterday, in Barcelona, ​​beatified were Matteo Casals, Teofilo Casajús, Fernando Saperas and 106 martyr companions, belonging to the Clerical Congregation and killed in hatred of faith during the Spanish Civil War. Their heroic example and their intercession are supported by Christians who, even in our day - and many - in different parts of the world suffer discrimination and persecution.

Today is celebrated the World Mission Day, on the theme "The Mission to the Heart of the Church". I urge everyone to live the joy of the mission by witnessing the Gospel in the environments where each one lives and works. At the same time, we are called upon to support with the affection, the concrete help and the prayer the missionaries who started to announce Christ to those who do not yet know Him. I also remember that I intend to promote an Extraordinary Missionary Month in October 2019 in order to nourish the ardor of the evangelizing activity of the Church ad gentes. On the day of the liturgical memory of Saint John Paul II, missionary Pope, we entrust to his intercession the mission of the Church in the world.

I ask you to join my prayer for peace in the world. These days, I pay close attention to Kenya, which I visited in 2015, and for which I would like the country to be able to tackle the current difficulties in a climate of constructive dialogue, having a heartfelt quest for the common good.

And now I greet you all, pilgrims coming from Italy and from various countries. In particular, the faithful of Luxembourg and those of Ibiza, the Family Movement of the Immaculate Heart of Mary of Brazil, the Sisters of the Most Holy Mother of Sorrows. I greet and bless with affection the Peruvian community of Rome, gathered here with the sacred Image of the Señor de los Milagros.

I greet the groups of faithful of many Italian parishes, and I encourage them to continue their journey of faith joyfully.

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

Top 10 Saint John Paul II Quotes to SHARE - #Quotes #JPII We Love You!

1.  "Trust Christ because Christ trusts you" (World Youth Day 2002).
2. "Life with Christ is a wonderful adventure."
3. "Faith and Reason are like two wings of the human spirit by which is soars to the truth.” 
4. “I plead with you! Never, ever give up on hope, never doubt, never tire, and never become discouraged. Be not afraid.”






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5. “Do not be afraid to take a chance on peace, to teach peace, to live peace...Peace will be the last word of history.”
6. “It is the duty of every man to uphold the dignity of every woman.” 
7.  “We are not the sum of our weaknesses and failures; we are the sum of the Father’s love for us and our real capacity to become the image of his Son.” (WYD, Closing Homily, 5)
8. “The future is in your hearts and in your hands. God is entrusting to you the task, at once difficult and uplifting, of working with him in the building of the civilization of love.” (Downsview Address, 4) 
9. “Dear young people, let yourselves be taken over by the light of Christ, and spread that light wherever you are.” (Downsview Address, 5) 7. 
10. " And if, in the depths of your hearts, you feel the same call to the priesthood or consecrated life, do not be afraid to follow Christ on the royal road of the Cross!” (Closing Homily, 5) 

Today"s Mass Readings and Video : Sun. October 22, 2017 - #Eucharist


Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 145


Reading 1IS 45:1, 4-6

Thus says the LORD to his anointed, Cyrus,
whose right hand I grasp,
subduing nations before him,
and making kings run in his service,
opening doors before him
and leaving the gates unbarred:
For the sake of Jacob, my servant,
of Israel, my chosen one,
I have called you by your name,
giving you a title, though you knew me not.
I am the LORD and there is no other,
there is no God besides me.
It is I who arm you, though you know me not,
so that toward the rising and the setting of the sun
people may know that there is none besides me.
I am the LORD, there is no other.

Responsorial PsalmPS 96:1, 3, 4-5, 7-8, 9-10

R. (7b) Give the Lord glory and honor.
Sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all you lands.
Tell his glory among the nations;
among all peoples, his wondrous deeds.
R. Give the Lord glory and honor.
For great is the LORD and highly to be praised;
awesome is he, beyond all gods.
For all the gods of the nations are things of nought,
but the LORD made the heavens.
R. Give the Lord glory and honor.
Give to the LORD, you families of nations,
give to the LORD glory and praise;
give to the LORD the glory due his name!
Bring gifts, and enter his courts.
R. Give the Lord glory and honor.
Worship the LORD, in holy attire;
tremble before him, all the earth;
say among the nations: The LORD is king,
he governs the peoples with equity.
R. Give the Lord glory and honor.

Reading 21 THES 1:1-5B

Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy to the church of the Thessalonians
in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
grace to you and peace.
We give thanks to God always for all of you,
remembering you in our prayers,
unceasingly calling to mind your work of faith and labor of love
and endurance in hope of our Lord Jesus Christ,
before our God and Father,
knowing, brothers and sisters loved by God,
how you were chosen.
For our gospel did not come to you in word alone,
but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with much conviction.

AlleluiaPHIL 2:15D, 16A

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Shine like lights in the world
as you hold on to the word of life.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMT 22:15-21

The Pharisees went off
and plotted how they might entrap Jesus in speech.
They sent their disciples to him, with the Herodians, saying,
"Teacher, we know that you are a truthful man
and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth.
And you are not concerned with anyone's opinion,
for you do not regard a person's status.
Tell us, then, what is your opinion:
Is it lawful to pay the census tax to Caesar or not?"
Knowing their malice, Jesus said,
"Why are you testing me, you hypocrites?
Show me the coin that pays the census tax."
Then they handed him the Roman coin.
He said to them, "Whose image is this and whose inscription?"
They replied, "Caesar's."
At that he said to them,
"Then repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar
and to God what belongs to God."

#Novena to Saint Pope John Paul II - Litany and Prayers - SHARE - #JP2

NOVENA TO SAINT JOHN PAUL II.

SHARED from Fr. Jim Chern at Montclair State University in New Jersey
Born in Poland - May 18, 1920
Ordained a Priest - November 1, 1946
Ordained a Bishop - Sept 28, 1958
Elected Pope - October 16, 1978
Entered Eternal Life - April 2, 2005
Beatified - May 1, 2011
Novena - October 13 - October 21
Feast Day: October 22
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NOVENA TO SAINT JOHN PAUL II

Priest: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
People: Amen

Priest: O Lord, open my lips.

People: And my mouth shall proclaim your praise.Priest: O God come to my assistance.
People: O Lord, make haste to help me.

Priest: Glory to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
People: As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be; world without end, AMEN


DAILY READING: Optional

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Pray: 1 Our Father; 1 Hail Mary; 1 Glory Be

Litany to Saint John Paul II
(Leader in plain font; Responses in BOLD)

Kyrie eleison; Kyrie eleison
Christe eleison; Christe eleison
Kyrie eleison; Kyrie eleison
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
Servant of God, John Paul II, pray for us
Perfect disciple of Christ, pray for us
Generously gifted with the gifts of the Holy Spirit; pray for us
Great apostle of Divine Mercy; pray for us
Faithful Son of Mary; pray for us
Totally dedicated to the Mother of God; pray for us
Persevering preacher of the Gospel; pray for us
Pilgrim Pope; pray for us
Pope of the Millennium; pray for us
Model of industry; pray for us
Model of priests; pray for us
Drawing strength from the Eucharist; pray for us
Untiring man of prayer; pray for us
Lover of the rosary; pray for us
Strength of those doubting their faith; pray for us
Desiring to unite all those who believe in Christ; pray for us
Converter of sinners; pray for us
Defender of the dignity of every person; pray for us
Defender of life from conception to natural death; pray for us
Praying for the gift of parenthood for the infertile; pray for us
Friend of children; pray for us
Leader of youth; pray for us
Intercessor of families, pray for us
Comforter of the suffering; pray for us
Manly bearing his pain; pray for us
Sower of divine joy; pray for us
Great intercessor for peace; pray for us
Pride of the Polish nation; pray for us
Brilliance of the Holy Church; pray for us
That we may be faithful imitators of Christ; pray for us
That we may be strong with the power of the Holy Spirit; pray for us
That we may have trust in the Mother of God; pray for us
That we may grow in our faith, hope, and charity; pray for us
That we may live in peace in our families; pray for us
That we may know how to forgive; pray for us
That we may know how to bear suffering; pray for us
That we may not succumb to the culture of death; pray for us
That we may not be afraid and courageously fight off various temptations; pray for us
That he would intercede for us the grace of a happy death; pray for us
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
Pray for us, Venerable Servant of God John Paul II, That we may become worthy of the promises of Christ

PRAYER 

O Blessed Trinity, we thank you for having graced the Church with Pope John Paul II and for allowing the tenderness of your Fatherly care, the glory of the cross of Christ, and the splendor of the Holy Spirit to shine through him. Trusting fully in your infinite mercy and in the maternal intercession of Mary, he has given us a living image of Jesus the Good Shepherd, and has shown us that holiness is the necessary measure of ordinary Christian life and the way of achieving eternal communion with you. Grant us, by his intercession, and according to your will the graces we implore, especially for [PAUSE TO ADD YOUR INTENTION] . . . we ask this, through Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN

Conclusion
Make the Sign of the Cross as you say

MAY THE LORD BLESS US, PROTECT US FROM ALL EVIL AND BRING US TO EVERLASTING LIFE - AMEN

Saint John Paul II - PRAY FOR US!

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Saint October 22 : St. Pope John Paul II - SHARE - #JPII #PopeJohnPaulII




 Saint Pope John Paul II was born and named Karol Jozef Wojtyla on May 18, 1920. He died on April 2, 2005 at the age of 84 years. John Paul II reigned as Pope of the Roman Catholic Church from October 16, 1978 until his death. He was the only Polish Pontiff to reign.


The Pontiff was influencial in the downfall of Communism. He traveled more than any other Pope in history, visiting 129 countries. The Holy Father spoke many languages including: Polish, Italian, Spanish, German, English, Portuguese, Russian, French, Croatian and Latin. He beatified 1, 340 people and canonised 483 Saints.



John Paul II was beatified on May 1, 2011 and his memorial is celebrated on Oct. 22.

Karol Wojtyla was born in Poland in Wadowice. He was the youngest of 3 children to Karol Wojtyla and Emilia Kaczorowska. When Karol was 8 years old his mother(April 13, 1929) died. Olga, Karol's elder sister died in infancy. His only remaining sibling, a brother Edmund, was a physician. Edmund, 14 years older than Karol, died from scarlet fever. (image source:


In 1938, Karol and his father moved to Krakow. He then studied at Jagiellonian University. Here Karol engaged in theatrical works and hard labour. His father died of a heart attack in 1941. Wojtyla began priestly studies in 1942 at an underground seminary. He was ordained a priest on November 1, 1946 by Archbishop Cardinal Sapieha.
Karol then went to Rome to study at the Pontifical International Athenaeum Angelicum. Here he received a licentiate and a doctorate in Sacred Theology. In 1948, he returned to Poland and was head of a local Parish.
Fr. Wojtyla began to teach ethics at the Jagiellonian University. In 1954, he received another doctorate in philosophy. He was appointed auxiliary bishop of Krakow in 1958.
Bishop Wojtyla was an active participant of the Second Vatican Council, which occurred in 1962-1965. In 1964, Karol was appointed Archbishop of Krakow. In 1967, Karol was promoted to Cardinal. He was inaugurated Pontiff on October, 22, 1978. Karol took the name John Paul II after the preceding Pope John Paul I who died early in his reign.
He became the 264th Pope to reign at the age of 58. He wrote 14 Papal Encyclicals. He took the motto Totus Tuus in reference to the Blessed Virgin Mary. He had a special devotion to the Mother of God.
As Pope, John Paul established "World Youth Days", these gathered young Catholics from around the world for a week of prayer and activities. The largest gathering of people, in history, occurred in Manila, Phillipines at the World Youth Day with JPII. Here around 5 million gathered to celebrate the Catholic Faith.



On May 13, 1981 JPII was shot and wounded by Mehmet Ali Agca. This was an assassination attempt by this Turkish man as a member of a fascist group. He underwent extensive surgery and narrowly survived. He thanked Our Lady of Fatima for his survival. In 1983, JPII visited his assassin in prison. (image sources: google)

Pope John Paul II was very influential in ecumenism and met with many religious and political leaders. He is thought to have aided in the fall of Communism.
"True holiness does not mean a flight from the world; rather, it lies in the effort to incarnate the Gospel in everyday life, in the family, at school and at work, and in social and political involvement." Blessed Pope John Paul II..


#PopeFrancis " No physical or psychic limit may ever be an obstacle...the face of Christ shines in the intimacy of every person." FULL TEXT on Disabilities


Audience with the participants in the Conference organised by the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelisation, 21.10.2017

At 11.30 today, in the Clementine Hall of the Apostolic Palace, the Holy Father Francis received in audience the participants in the Conference Catechesis and Persons with Disabilities: A Necessary Engagement in the Daily Pastoral Life of the Church, organised by the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelisation, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the promulgation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, taking place at the Pontifical Urbanian University, Rome, from 20 to 22 October 2017.
The following is the Pope’s address to those present:

VATICAN.VA - FULL TEXT - Address of the Holy Father
Dear brothers and sisters,
I rejoice at meeting you, especially because in these days you have considered a theme of great importance for the life of the Church in her work of evangelisation and Christian formation: Catechesis and Persons with Disabilities. I thank H.E. Msgr. Fisichella for his introduction, the dicastery over which he presides for its service, and all of you for your work in this field.
We know the great development that throughout recent decades has taken place in relation to disability. The growth in awareness of the dignity of every person, especially the weakest, has led to courageous positions being taken for the inclusion of those who live with various forms of handicap, so that no-one need feel like an outsider in their own home. However, at cultural level there persist expressions that harm the dignity of these people through the prevalence of a false concept of life. A vision that is often narcissistic and utilitarian unfortunately leads many to consider as marginal people with disabilities, without recognising in them the multiform human and spiritual wealth. An attitude of denying this condition, as if it prevented happiness and the realisation of the self, is still too strong in the common mentality. This is shown by the eugenic tendency to suppress unborn children when they are shown to have some form of imperfection. In reality, we all know many people who, with their fragility, even in serious cases, have found the path of a good life rich in meaning, if with some hardship. Just as, on the other hand, we know people who are apparently perfect and desperate! Besides, it is a dangerous deceit to think we are invulnerable. Just as a girl I met on my recent trip to Colombia said to me, vulnerability is part of the essence of man.
The answer is love: not the false kind, overly sentimental and pietistic, but the true kind, concrete and respectful. To the extent in which we are welcomed and loved, included in the community and accompanied to look to the future with trust, the true path of life is developed and we experience lasting happiness. This, we know, is valid to all, but the most fragile are the proof. Faith is a great life companion when it permits us to touch with our hand the presence of a Father who never leaves His creatures alone, in no condition of their life. The Church cannot be aphonic or tone-deaf in the defence and promotion of people with disability. Her closeness to families helps her overcome the solitude in which they often risk closing themselves up due to a lack of attention and support. This is even more valid for the responsibility she possesses in the generation and formation of Christian life. There can be no lack in communities of the words and, above all, the gestures to encounter and welcome people with disabilities. The Sunday liturgy in particular must be able to include, so that the encounter with the Risen Lord and with the same community can be a source of hope and courage in the not always easy path of life.
Catechesis, in a special way, is called to discover and experiment with coherent forms so that every person, with his or her gifts, limits and disabilities, even serious, may encounter Jesus on the way and abandon himself to Him with faith. No physical or psychic limit may ever be an obstacle to this encounter, because the face of Christ shines in the intimacy of every person. In addition, let us be careful, especially us, as ministers in Christ’s grace, not to fall into the neo-Pelagian trap of not recognising the need for the strength of the grace that comes from the Sacraments of Christian initiation. Let us learn to overcome discomfort and fear that at times can be felt with regard to people with disabilities. Let us learn to seek and also to “invent”, with intelligence, suitable tools so that no-one lacks the support of grace. Let us form – first of all by example! – catechists who are increasingly capable of accompanying these people so that they may grow in faith and make their genuine and original contribution to the life of the Church. Finally, I hope that in communities, people with disabilities may too be catechists, also by their witness, to transmit faith in a more effective way.
I thank you for your work in these days, and for your service in the Church. May Our Lady accompany you. I heartily bless you and I ask you, please, do not forget to pray for me. Thank you.

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Today's Mass Readings and Video : Sat. October 21, 2017 - #Eucharist


Saturday of the Twenty-eighth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 472


Reading 1ROM 4:13, 16-18

Brothers and sisters:
It was not through the law
that the promise was made to Abraham and his descendants
that he would inherit the world,
but through the righteousness that comes from faith.
For this reason, it depends on faith,
so that it may be a gift,
and the promise may be guaranteed to all his descendants,
not to those who only adhere to the law
but to those who follow the faith of Abraham,
who is the father of all of us, as it is written,
I have made you father of many nations.
He is our father in the sight of God,
in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead
and calls into being what does not exist.
He believed, hoping against hope,
that he would become the father of many nations,
according to what was said, Thus shall your descendants be.

Responsorial Psalm PS 105:6-7, 8-9, 42-43

R. (8a) 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.
For he remembered his holy word
to his servant Abraham.
And he led forth his people with joy;
with shouts of joy, his chosen ones.
R. The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.

Alleluia JN 15:26B, 27A

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Spirit of truth will testify to me, says the Lord,
and you also will testify.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelLK 12:8-12

Jesus said to his disciples:
"I tell you,
everyone who acknowledges me before others
the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God.
But whoever denies me before others
will be denied before the angels of God.

"Everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven,
but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit
will not be forgiven.
When they take you before synagogues and before rulers and authorities,
do not worry about how or what your defense will be
or about what you are to say.
For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment what you should say."

Saint October 21 : St. Hilarion of Gaza - #Abbot


St. Hilarion
ABBOT
Feast: October 21
Information:
Feast Day:
October 21
Born:
291 at Gaza, Palestine
Died:
371 at Cyprus

Hilarion was born in a little town called Tabatha, five miles to the south of Gaza; he sprang like a rose out of thorns, his parents being idolaters. He was sent by them very young to Alexandria to study grammar, when, by his progress in learning, he gave great proofs of his wit, for which, and his good temper and dispositions, he was exceedingly beloved by all that knew him. Being brought to the knowledge of the Christian faith, he was baptized and became immediately a new man, renouncing all the mad sports of the circus and the entertainments of the theatre, and taking no delight but in the churches and assemblies of the faithful. Having heard of St. Antony, whose name was famous in Egypt, he went into the desert to see him. Moved by the example of his virtue he changed his habit and stayed with him two months, observing his manner of life, his fervour in prayer, his humility in receiving the brethren, his severity in reproving them, his earnestness in exhorting them, and his perseverance in austerities. But not being able to bear the frequent concourse of those who resorted to St. Antony to be healed of diseases or delivered from devils, and being desirous to begin to serve God like St. Antony in perfect solitude, he returned with certain monks into his own country. Upon his arrival there, finding his father and mother both dead, he gave part of his goods to his brethren and the rest to the poor, reserving nothing for himself.
He was then but fifteen years of age, this happening about the year 307. He retired into a desert seven miles from Majuma, toward Egypt, between the seashore on one side and certain fens on the other. His friends forewarned him that the place was notorious for murders and robberies, but his answer was that he feared nothing but eternal death. Everybody admired his fervour and extraordinary manner of life. In the beginning of his retirement certain robbers who lurked in those deserts asked him what he would do if thieves and assassins came to him? He answered, "The poor and naked fear no thieves." "But they may kill you," said they. "It is true," said the holy man, "and for this very reason I am not afraid of them, because it is my endeavour to be always prepared for death." So great fervour and resolution in one so young and so tender as our saint was both surprising and edifying to all who knew him. His constitution was so weak and delicate that the least excess of heat or cold affected him very sensibly; yet his whole clothing consisted only of a piece of sackcloth, a leather coat, which St. Antony gave him, and an ordinary short cloak. Living in solitude, he thought himself at liberty to practice certain mortifications which the respect we owe to our neighbour makes unseasonable in the world. He cut his hair only once a year, against Easter; never changed any coat till it was worn out, and never washed the sackcloth which he had once put on, saying, "It is idle to look for neatness in a hair shirt."
At his first entering on this penitential life he renounced the use of bread; and for six years together his whole diet was fifteen figs a day, which he never took till sunset. When he felt the attacks of any temptation of the flesh, being angry with himself and beating his breast, he would say to his body, "I will take order, thou little ass, that thou shalt not kick; I will feed thee with straw instead of corn; and will load and weary thee, that so thou mayest think rather how to get a little bit to eat than of pleasure." He then retrenched part of his scanty meal, and sometimes fasted three or four days without eating; and when after this he was fainting, he sustained his body only with a few dried figs and the juice of herbs. At the same time, praying and singing, he would be breaking the ground with a rake, that his labour might add to the trouble of his fasting. His employment was digging or tilling the earth, or, in imitation of the Egyptian monks, weaving small twigs together with great rushes in making baskets whereby he provided himself with the frugal necessaries of life. During the first four years of his penance he had no other shelter from the inclemencies of the weather than a little hovel or arbour which he made himself of reeds and rushes which he found in a neighbouring marsh, and which he had woven together. Afterwards he built himself a little cell, which was still to be seen in St. Jerome's time; it was but four feet broad and five feet in height, and was a little longer than the extent of his body, so that a person would have rather taken it for a grave than a house. During the course of his penance he made some alteration in his diet, but never in favour of his appetites. From the age of twenty-one he for three years lived on a measure which was little more than half a pint of pulse steeped in cold water a-day; and for the next three years his whole food was dry bread with salt and water. From his twenty-seventh year to his thirty-first he ate only wild herbs and raw roots; and from thirty-one to thirty-five he took for his daily food six ounces of barley bread a day, to which he added a few kitchen herbs, but half boiled and without oil. But perceiving his sight to grow dim and his body to be subject to an itching with an unnatural kind of scurf and roughness, he added a little oil to this diet. Thus he went on till his sixty-fourth year when, conceiving by the decay of his strength that his death was drawing near, he retrenched even his bread, and from that time to his eightieth year his whole meal never exceeded five ounces. When he was fourscore years of age there were made for him little weak broths or gruels of flour and herbs, the whole quantity of his meat and drink scarce amounting to the weight of four ounces. Thus he passed his whole life; and he never broke his fast till sunset, not even upon the highest feasts or in his greatest sickness.
Anyone who considers the condition of man in this state of trial and the malice of the enemy of our salvation will easily conceive that our saint did not pass all these years, nor arrive at so eminent a degree of virtue and sanctity, without violent temptations and assaults from the infernal spirit; in all which he was victorious by the assistance of omnipotent grace. Sometimes his soul was covered with a dark cloud, and his heart was dry and oppressed with bitter anguish; but the deafer heaven seemed to his cries on such occasions, the louder and the more earnestly he persevered knocking. To have dropped the shield of prayer under these temptations would have been to perish. At other times his mind was haunted and his imagination filled with impure images, or with the vanities of the theatre and circus. The phantoms of the enemy St. Hilarion dissipated by casting himself upon his knees and signing his forehead with the cross of Christ; and, being enlightened and strengthened by a supernatural grace, he discovered his snares, and never suffered himself to be imposed upon by the artifices by which that subtle fiend strove to withdraw him from holy prayer, in which the saint spent the days and great part of the nights.
St. Hilarion had spent above twenty years in his desert when he wrought his first miracle. A certain married woman of Eleutheropolis, who was the scorn of her husband for her barrenness, sought him out in his solitude, and by her tears and importunities prevailed upon him to pray that God would bless her with fruitfulness; and before the year's end she brought forth a son, A second miracle much enhanced the saint's reputation. Elpidius, who was afterwards prefect of the praetorium, and his wife Aristeneta, returning from a visit of devotion they had made to St. Antony to receive his blessing and instructions, arrived at Gaza, where their three children fell sick, and their fever proving superior to the power of medicines they were brought to the last extremity, and their recovery despaired of by the physicians. The mother, like one distracted, addressed herself to Hilarion, who, moved by her tears, went to Gaza to visit them. Upon his invoking the holy name of Jesus by their bedside, the children fell into a violent sweat, by which they were so refreshed as to be able to eat, to know their mother, and kiss the saint's hand. Upon the report of this miracle many flocked to the saint, desiring to embrace a monastic life under his direction. Till that time neither Syria nor Palestine were acquainted with that penitential state; so that St. Hilarion was the first founder of it in those countries, as Antony had been in Egypt. Among other miraculous cures, several persons possessed by devils were delivered by our saint. The most remarkable were Marisitas, a young man of the territory about Jerusalem, so strong that he boasted he could carry seven bushels of corn; and Orion, a rich man of the city of Aila, who, after his cure, pressed the saint to accept many great presents, at least for the poor. But the holy hermit persisted obstinately to refuse touching any of them, bidding him bestow them himself. St. Hilarion restored sight to a woman of Facidia, a town near Rinocorura, in Egypt, who had been blind ten years. A citizen of Majuma, called Italicus, who was a Christian, kept horses to run in the circus against a Duumvir of Gaza, who adored Mamas, which was the great idol of Gaza, that word signifying in Syriac, Lord of men. Italicus, knowing that his adversary had recourse to spells to stop his horses, came to St. Hilarion, by whose blessing his horses seemed to fly while the others seemed fettered; upon seeing which the people cried out that Mamas was vanquished by Christ. From the model which our saint set, a great number of monasteries were founded all over Palestine. St. Hilarion visited them all on certain days before the vintage.
St. Hilarion was informed by revelation in Palestine, where he then was, of the death of St. Antony. He was then about sixty-five years old, and had been for two years much afflicted at the great number of bishops, priests, and people that were continually resorting to him, by which his contemplation was interrupted. At length, regretting the loss of that sweet solitude and obscurity which he formerly enjoyed, he resolved to leave that country, to prevent which the people assembled to the number of ten thousand to watch him. He told them he would neither eat nor drink till they let him go; and seeing him pass seven days without taking anything they left him. He then chose forty monks who were able to walk without breaking their fast (that is, without eating till after sunset), and with them he travelled into Egypt. On the fifth day he arrived at Peleusium; and in six days more at Babylon, in Egypt. Two days after he came to the city of Aphroditon, where he applied himself to the deacon Baisanes, who used to let dromedaries to those who had desired to visit St. Antony, for carrying water which they had occasion for in that desert. The saint desired to celebrate the anniversary of St. Antony's death by watching all night in the place where he died. After travelling three days in a horrible desert they came to St. Antony's mountain, where they found two monks, Isaac and Pelusius, who had been his disciples, and the first his interpreter. It was a very high steep rock of a mile in circuit, at the foot of which was a rivulet, with abundance of palm-trees on the borders. St. Hilarion walked all over the place with the disciples of St. Antony. Here it was, said they, that he sang, here he prayed; there he laboured, and there he reposed himself when he was weary. He himself planted these vines and these little trees; he tilled this piece of ground with his own hands; he dug this basin with abundance of labour, to water his garden, and he used this hoe to work with several years together. St. Hilarion laid himself upon his bed and kissed it as if it had been still warm. The cell contained no more space in length and breadth than what was necessary for a man to stretch himself in to sleep. On the top of the mountain (to which the ascent was very difficult, turning like a vine) they found two cells of the same size, to which he often retired to avoid a number of visitors and even the conversation of his own disciples: they were hewn in a rock, nothing but doors being added to them. When they came to the garden, "Do you see," said Isaac, "this little garden planted with trees and pot-herbs? About three years since a herd of wild asses coming to destroy it, he stopped one of the first of them and, striking him on the sides with his staff, said, 'Why do you eat what you did not sow?' From that time forward they only came hither to drink, without meddling with the trees or herbs." St. Hilarion asked to see the place where he was buried. They carried him to a bye place; but it is uncertain whether they showed it him or no; for they showed no grave, and only said that St. Antony had given the strictest charge that his grave should be concealed, fearing lest Pergamius, who was a very rich man in that country, should carry the body home and cause a church to be built for it.
St. Hilarion returned from this place to Aphroditon, and, retiring with only two disciples into a neighbouring desert, exercised himself with more earnestness than ever in abstinence and silence; saying, according to his custom, that he then only began to serve Jesus Christ. It had not rained in the country for three years, that is, ever since the death of St. Antony, when the people in deep affliction and misery addressed themselves to St. Hilarion, whom they looked upon as St. Antony's successor, imploring his compassion and prayers. The saint, sensibly affected with their distress, lifted up his hands and eyes to heaven, and immediately obtained a plentiful rain. Also many labourers and herdsmen who were stung by serpents and venomous beasts were perfectly cured by anointing their wounds with oil which he had blessed and given them. Though oil be the natural and sovereign antidote against poison, these cures by his blessing were esteemed miraculous. The saint, seeing the extraordinary honours which were paid him in that place, departed privately towards Alexandria, in order to proceed to the desert of Oasis. It not being his custom to stop in great cities, he turned from Alexandria into Brutium, a remote suburb of that city, where several monks dwelt. He left this place the same evening, and when these monks very importunately pressed his stay he told them that it was necessary for their security that he should leave them. The sequel showed that he had the spirit of prophecy; for that very night armed men arrived there in pursuit of him, with an order to put him to death. When Julian the Apostate ascended the throne, the pagans of Gaza obtained an order from that prince to kill him, in revenge of the affront he had put upon their god Mamas, and of the many conversions he had made; and they had sent this party into Egypt to execute the sentence. The soldiers, finding themselves disappointed at Brutium, said he well deserved the character of a magician which he had at Gaza. The saint spent about a year in the desert of Oasis, and, finding that he was too well known in that country ever to lie concealed there, determined to seek shelter in some remote island, and, going to Paretonium in Lybia, embarked there with one companion for Sicily. He landed at Pachynus, a famous promontory on the eastern side of the island, now called Capo di Passaro. Upon landing he offered to pay for his passage and that of his companion with a copy of the gospels which he had written in his youth with his own hand; but the master, seeing their whole stock consisted in that manuscript and the clothes on their backs, would not accept of it; he even esteemed himself indebted to this passenger, who by his prayers had delivered his son, who was possessed by a devil, on board the vessel. St. Hilarion, fearing lest he should be discovered by some oriental merchants if he settled near the coast, travelled twenty miles up the country and stopped in an unfrequented wild place; where, by gathering sticks, he made every day a fagot, which he sent his disciple, whose name was Zanan, to sell at the next village, in order to buy a little bread. Hesychius, the saint's beloved disciple, had sought him in the East and through Greece when, at Methone, now called Modon, in Peloponnesus, he heard that a prophet had appeared in Sicily who wrought many miracles. He embarked and arrived at Pachynus; and inquiring for the holy man at the first village, found that everybody knew him; he was not more distinguished by his miracles than by his disinterestedness; for he could never be prevailed upon to take anything, not so much as a morsel of bread, from anyone.
St. Hilarion was desirous to go into some strange country, where not even his language should be understood. Hesychius therefore carried him to Epidaurus in Dalmatia, now Old Ragusa, the ruins of which city are seen near the present capital of the republic of that name. Miracles here again defeated the saint's design of living unknown. St. Hilarion, seeing it impossible to live there unknown, fled away in the night in a small vessel to the island of Cyprus. Being arrived there, he retired to a place two miles from Paphos. He had not been there three weeks when such as were possessed with devils in any part of the island began to cry out that Hilarion, the servant of Jesus Christ, was come. He expelled the evil spirits, but, sighing after the tranquillity of closer retirement, considered how he could make his escape to some other country; but the inhabitants watched him that he might not leave them. After two years Hesychius persuaded him to lay aside that design and retire to a solitary place which he had found twelve miles from the shore, not unpleasantly situated among very rough and craggy mountains, where there was water with fruit-trees, which advice the saint followed, but he never tasted the fruit. St. Jerome mentions that though he lived so many years in Palestine, he never went up to visit the holy places at Jerusalem but once; and then stayed only one day in that city. He went once that he might not seem to despise that devotion; but did not go oftener, lest he should seem persuaded that God or his religious worship is confined to any particular place. His chief reason, doubtless, was to shun the distractions of populous places that as much as possible nothing might interrupt the close union of his soul to God. The saint, in the eightieth year of his age, whilst Hesychius was absent, wrote him a short letter with his own hand in the nature of a last will and testament, in which he bequeathed to him all his riches, namely, his book of the gospels, his sackcloth, hood, and little cloak. Many pious persons came from Paphos to see him in his last sickness, hearing he had foretold that he was to go to our Lord. With them there came a holy woman named Constantia, whose son-in-law and daughter he had freed from death by anointing them with oil. He caused them to swear that as soon as he should have expired, they would immediately commit his corpse to the earth, apparelled as he was, with his hair-cloth, hood, and cloak. His distemper increasing upon him, very little heat appeared to remain in his body, nor did anything seem to remain in him of a living man besides his understanding, only his eyes were still open. He expressed his sense of the divine judgments, but encouraged his soul to an humble confidence in the mercy of his Judge and Redeemer, saying to himself, "Go forth, what cost thou fear? go forth, my soul, what cost thou apprehend? Behold, it is now threescore and ten years that thou hast served Christ; and art thou afraid of death?" He had scarcely spoken these words but he gave up the ghost, and was immediately buried as he had ordered.
St. Hilarion died in 371, or the following year, being about eighty years of age; for he was sixty-five years old at the death of St. Antony. Hesychius, who was in Palestine, made haste to Cyprus upon hearing this news and, pretending to take up his dwelling in the same garden, after ten months found an opportunity of secretly carrying off the saint's body into Palestine, where he interred it in his monastery, near Majuma. It was as entire as it was when alive, and the cloths were untouched. Many miracles were wrought, both in Cyprus and Palestine, through his intercession, as St. Jerome assures us. Sozomen mentions his festival to have been kept with great solemnity in the fifth age. See his life written by St. Jerome before the year 392.
If this saint trembled after an innocent, penitential, and holy life, because he considered how perfect the purity and sanctity of a soul must be to stand before him who is infinite purity and infinite justice, how much ought tepid, slothful, and sinful Christians to fear? Whilst love inflames the saints with an ardent desire of being united to their God in the kingdom of pure love and security, a holy fear of his justice checks and humbles in them all presumption. This fear must never sink into despondency, abjection, or despair; but quicken our sloth, animate our fervour, and raise our courage; it must be solicitous, not anxious. Love and hope must fill our souls with sweet peace and joy, and with an entire confidence in the infinite mercy and goodness of God, and the merits of our divine Redeemer. SOURCE The Catholic Encyclopedia