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Just reminding erryone of my current location #rio #papafrancis #skyline #beautiful

Posted by on 7-22-13

El Jueves salgo para Puerto Rico y estare participando del JMJ en PR. Un Evento unido al JMJ de Brasil. Seran dias de mucha gracia, poder y misericordia. Contamos con sus oraciones! Para mas info porfavor visiten www.jmj2013pr.com #jmj #jmj2013pr #brasil #puertorico #unasolaiglesia #jovenes #catholic #catolico #papafrancis

Posted by on 7-22-13

“Não tenho ouro nem prata.. Vim aqui transmitir o maior presente que recebi nessa vida: Jesus Cristo” – Papa Francisco, no Palácio Guanabara, na sua chegada no Rio de Janeiro

Posted by on 7-22-13

Nada mejor que coger cosas de los hoteles y encontrartelas un tiempo mas tarde #recuerdoson #abril2013 #antequera #campeonatoespañaporescuelas #catalunya #buenequipo #genialrelevo #granada #bocadecaballo #dientesdeleon #mojopicon #bananas #pasajeros #titofrancis #papafrancis #yayofrancis #quierovolver

Posted by on 7-22-13

El papa Francisco acaba de recitar: “Necesitamos santos sin velo, sin sotana. Necesitamos santos de jeans y zapatillas. Necesitamos santos que vayan al cine, escuchen musica y paseen con sus amigos. Necesitamos santos que coloquen a Dios en primer lugar y que sobresalgan en la Universidad. Necesitamos santos que busquen tiempo cada dia para rezar y que sepan enamorar en la pureza y castidad, o que consagren su castidad. Necesitamos santos modernos, santos del siglo XXI con una espiritualidad insertada en nuestro tiempo. Necesitamos santos comprometidos con los pobres y los necesarios cambios sociales. Necesitamos santos que vivan en el mundo, se santifiquen en el mundo y que no tengan miedo de vivir en el mundo. Necesitamos santos que tomen Coca Cola y coman hot-dogs, que sean internautas, que escuchen iPod. Necesitamos santos que amen la Eucaristia y que no tengan vergüenza de tomar una cerveza o comer pizza el fin de semana con los amigos. Necesitamos santos a los que les guste el cine, el teatro, la musica, la danza, el deporte. Necesitamos santos sociables, abiertos, normales, amigos, alegres, compañeros. Necesitamos santos que esten en el mundo y que sepan saborear las cosas puras y buenas del mundo, pero sin ser mundanos”. Amen!!!!!!! (Esta parte la dije yo) :) #santidadenjeans #santidad #PapaFrancis #Iglesia #yes #holiness

Posted by on 7-21-13

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Intinction...

Posted on Sep 15, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

The other day the Holy Father Pope Francis witnessed, during Holy Mass for the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, the marriages of a passel of couples, some in some irregular situations. Leaving that aside, there was one thing that caught my eye.

His Holiness, again, did not seem to distribute Communion. He doesn’t, you know. However, deacons distributed under both kinds and by intinction.

Thus, no Communion in the hand.  Nota bene: they are kneeling.

For all the liturgical progressivists out there who think that Francis is the first Pope who has ever smiled or kissed a baby…. When will you implement kneeling in your parishes for Communion by intinction?

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The post Intinction appeared first on Fr. Z's Blog.

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Emmaus: Recognizing Jesus...

Posted on Sep 15, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Although the story of Jesus walking to Emmaus on Easter Sunday with two disciples is found only in the Gospel of Luke (24:13-32), in a sense, it is every disciple’s story.

Two disciples who thought they understood the Scriptures had their hearts opened more widely to Jesus as he spoke with them along the way. They recognized Jesus for certain in the breaking of the bread (v. 30), the New Testament’s oldest term for the Eucharist. “Were not our hearts burning [within us] when he spoke to us on the way and opened the scriptures to us?” they asked one another. They immediately returned to Jerusalem to inform the apostles.

There was a Byzantine-era and Crusader-era church to commemorate this event—but at a greater distance from Jerusalem than Luke indicates. The present site dates to the 14th century; the Friars Minor arrived in 1355.

The Custody of the Holy Land acquired the property in the 19th century. The present church dates to 1902 and is built over the reputed house of Cleopas, the only disciple named in Luke’s account. May each of us be as willing to grow in our faith as were the two disciples whom Jesus met on the road to Emmaus!

This blog was taken from Pat McCloskey’s “Dear Reader” column in St. Anthony Messenger. To subscribe to this award-winning publication, click here.

*****
Image: “Landscape with Christ and his Disciples on the Road to Emmaus” by Jan Wildens/Wikimedia Commons

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Phase Two Completed...

Posted on Sep 11, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

August, 2014, saw the completion of phase two
 of the work on the Oratory of Our Mother of Perpetual Succour,
 the chapel attached to our monastery in
 Christchurch, New Zealand.
The Oratory as it stood after phase one in March, 2013.
 The dome over the altar and beautiful arch window
 allowing light to stream in during the morning Mass is in place.
 Much of the sanctuary furnishing is in place along with the altar steps.
The Oratory on 31 August, 2014. 
The Gospel side of the sanctuary in March, 2013.
The Holy Baptism of little Ambrose Green on 31 August, 2014.
The Gospel side of the sanctuary has been transformed
 with a new door and window installed,
 new panelling fixed on the lower walls.
 To see the many young families that crowd into the
 Oratory every Sunday, injecting so much
 life and joy into the community is 
an hundred fold reward to all those 
who have contributed to the work.
2013
2014
In the wall of the Gospel side of the sanctuary
 an Ambry for the reservation of the Holy Oils
 has been installed. 
Two side altars have been installed
 in honour of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
 and the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.
The altar of the Sacred Heart is erected
 in memory of Mr Duncan Simon, R.I.P. 
while the altar of the Immaculate Heart
 is erected in memory 
of Mrs Nancye Price, R.I.P.
 
The Altar of Our Lady of the Rosary of Fatima in its own chapel. 
This altar is erected in memory of Mr Michael Hayes, R.I.P.
The shrine of St Joseph 
erected in memory of Rev. Fr Augustine Cummins, C.SS.R., R.I.P.
The first and last thought in entering the Oratory 
is Our Blessed Lady of Christchurch.
 The ceiling around her altar is coffered 
and embellished with fleur-de-lis.
 The newly refurbished 
Stations of the Cross line the walls. 
 The stars which adorn the ceiling remind us
 of our Heavenly home,
 wherein dwells the Father of Lights!  
Our thanks to all our many and dear friends in Christchurch
 who gave of their time and substance
 to make this beautiful work possible
 for the glory of God and His Holy Church -
 helping with painting, woodworking, building,
 purchasing materials,
 cooking and catering for the work days, etc.
  This chapel is a fitting tribute to you all. 

As Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer, 
it has been our privilege to make this humble effort
 for the rebuilding of the fair city of Christchurch,
 and provide a little sanctuary
 where souls may come to spend time
 with Our Heavenly Queen,
 and may enjoy some of the
 beauty of the traditional Rite.

Indeed we cannot repeat too often in our lives: 
Thanks be to God for all He has done
 and is doing for us.
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A Miraculous Medal Story...

Posted on Sep 11, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

The Miraculous Medal: Stories, Prayers, and Devotions by Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle is one of our favorite titles here at Servant. It’s also a book that finds its way into the hands of a wide variety of readers. Here’s just one example, shared with me by Donna-Marie:

The past three years have been challenging for both sides of my family. Although I have always tried to hold my head high and accept each new day as a gift, at times it was hard. 

My special needs stepdaughter delivered two beautiful baby boys, ten months apart. A year ago, I was forced to report her to the Department of Children and Family Services for neglect, and the children were removed and placed in my home. The oldest suffers from many emotional disturbances and his younger brother is now beginning to show signs of trauma as well. This is where my connection to you began. I saw your book on the Miraculous Medal on my mom’s end table. I took the book home with me, but at the time I didn’t have time to read it. I immediately bought myself a medal, put it on, and have never taken it off. I also began praying to Mary and asking for her help with my new role, going from Grandma to Mama overnight. Mary has never let me down. Every time I have felt anxious or needed her, I have felt her presence. 

I finally began reading your book and I have been reading it every night for the past week. Your book has brought me another level of peace. I wanted to share my story with you and let you know that your book has helped strengthen my belief and trust in the Blessed Mother.

Thank you for what you do!

Working in book publishing, it’s so heartwarming to read stories like this from readers whose lives have been changed through reading one of our books. If you have a story you’d like to share with us, please comment below.

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Dicipleship Isn’t Easy...

Posted on Sep 10, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Pope Francis teaches that our faith is not just about our heart and our head, it’s about our hands and our feet as well. It’s about what we do with our faith that counts—how we put that faith into action in our world.

Discipleship isn’t easy. It wasn’t easy for the first disciples either. Take a look at Peter and Paul. I love hearing about St. Peter. He screwed up so many times that it gives me lots of hope. He walks on water in faith but ends up sinking in doubt. He refuses to let Jesus wash his feet then wants his whole body cleansed. He swears he’ll never deny Jesus then does it three times. And despite all his failings, Jesus still forgives Peter. And not only that, He gives him the highest honor possible by building His church upon him.

If Peter can make a mess of things as many times as he did, then I guess I can feel confident that God will continue to forgive me as I stumble and fall throughout my journey.

One of the lessons I take from Peter’s life is that being a disciple doesn’t mean I need to be perfect. Far from it. Part of being a disciple is persistence. If I mess up I know that I can try again. And if discipleship and evangelization seem a little daunting then that’s ok too. All I can do is try to know my faith, try to live my faith and attempt to share my faith with others. And I challenge you to do the same.

*****

Image courtesy of PhotoXpress.com

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Dicipleship Isn’t Easy...

Posted on Sep 10, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Pope Francis teaches that our faith is not just about our heart and our head, it’s about our hands and our feet as well. It’s about what we do with our faith that counts—how we put that faith into action in our world.

Discipleship isn’t easy. It wasn’t easy for the first disciples either. Take a look at Peter and Paul. I love hearing about St. Peter. He screwed up so many times that it gives me lots of hope. He walks on water in faith but ends up sinking in doubt. He refuses to let Jesus wash his feet then wants his whole body cleansed. He swears he’ll never deny Jesus then does it three times. And despite all his failings, Jesus still forgives Peter. And not only that, He gives him the highest honor possible by building His church upon him.

If Peter can make a mess of things as many times as he did, then I guess I can feel confident that God will continue to forgive me as I stumble and fall throughout my journey.

One of the lessons I take from Peter’s life is that being a disciple doesn’t mean I need to be perfect. Far from it. Part of being a disciple is persistence. If I mess up I know that I can try again. And if discipleship and evangelization seem a little daunting then that’s ok too. All I can do is try to know my faith, try to live my faith and attempt to share my faith with others. And I challenge you to do the same.

*****

Image courtesy of PhotoXpress.com

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Our Mother and a Bishop...

Posted on Sep 9, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Yesterday,  we celebrated the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Listening to the local Catholic radio station, the Mother of God was one of the leading topics of conversation throughout the various programs.  Another topic which has been gaining more and more attention in the past couple weeks is on the cause of the Venerable Fulton Sheen. So I thought to myself what better than to bring these two together in the same post.

There are a lot of videos of the late Fulton Sheen, but there is one on particular I feel is the perfect time to view entitled: The Woman I Love, The Blessed Virgin Mary.  All I ask is to click on the link and listen.

***God Bless***

 

featured image: sritangphoto/ freedigitalphotos.net

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Our Mother and a Bishop...

Posted on Sep 9, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Yesterday,  we celebrated the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Listening to the local Catholic radio station, the Mother of God was one of the leading topics of conversation throughout the various programs.  Another topic which has been gaining more and more attention in the past couple weeks is on the cause of the Venerable Fulton Sheen. So I thought to myself what better than to bring these two together in the same post.

There are a lot of videos of the late Fulton Sheen, but there is one on particular I feel is the perfect time to view entitled: The Woman I Love, The Blessed Virgin Mary.  All I ask is to click on the link and listen.

***God Bless***

 

featured image: sritangphoto/ freedigitalphotos.net

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“But Father! But Father!”...

Posted on Sep 7, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

An alert blogging priest out there wrote to me this morning…

Is Pope Francis reading Fr. Z’s blog?

What would all this be about?

He linked to a summary of Pope Francis non-magisterial fervorino for a weekday Mass (HERE) in which he said:

“One of you might say to me: ‘But Father, don’t Christians have laws?’ Yes. Jesus said: ‘I do not come to [abolish the Law], but to fulfil it.’

“But Father! But Father!”, I am sure many of you are saying by now, “Isn’t that something that priests have said for centuries?  And…you hate Vatican II!”

Of course.  Of course.  But we are allowed to have a little fun.

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The post “But Father! But Father!” appeared first on Fr. Z's Blog.

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Praise God! But, Why?...

Posted on Sep 5, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Today’s guest blogger is Nick Luken, a second-year student at The Ohio State University, majoring in English and minoring in professional writing. Nick graduated from Roger Bacon, a Franciscan high school in Cincinnati, in 2012.

“Alleluia.” At every Mass, just before the Gospel, we say this word over and over. Literally, the word means “praise God.” That’s not surprising, considering that so much of the Mass says just that, although in different terms: praise God. “Hosanna in the highest,” we proclaim as the Eucharistic Prayer begins. “Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ,” we say at the conclusion of each Gospel reading. And of course there’s the Gloria, a whole song dedicated to praising each person of the Trinity. And that’s just the Mass. We see people praising God in the Bible, in the lives of the saints, and in the prayers of the countless people who have come before us.

But something seems odd here: if we believe that God is omnipotent and omniscient, then why do we need to praise Him? We can tell God that He’s great (and He is), but that won’t make Him any greater. Plus, He must already know He’s great if He’s omniscient. God doesn’t really need our praise, but nevertheless, people of faith have made sure to praise God for millennia. If God doesn’t need our praise, why is it that we have praised Him for as long as we have believed in God?

One of the most common explanations I’ve heard for praising God is the idea that God is worthy of all the praise in the world. After all, He did make . . . everything! That does make Him obviously praiseworthy, and I think that we should praise God because He deserves our praise. But I’m not sure if that’s the best explanation I’ve heard.

I think the best explanation I’ve heard for why we praise God is that praising God improves our relationship with Him. I don’t mean that in a trivial way–I don’t believe that the only purpose of praise is bribery, trying to butter God up to get our prayers answered. I think praise improves our relationship with God in a much deeper way. Praising God is like giving a friend or a family member a sincere compliment. If you were to tell a true friend that he or she means a lot to you, you probably wouldn’t be doing it just to get something from your friend. You’d be doing it to show your friend that you care about him or her, and by doing so, you’d deepen your relationship with your friend. The same thing happens when we praise God.

Deepening our relationship with God isn’t the only purpose of giving Him praise, but I think that it’s a very profound purpose. There’s just something uniquely wonderful about praising God that brings us closer to Him.

Featured image: 142029790/ shutterstock.com

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Praise God! But, Why?...

Posted on Sep 5, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Today’s guest blogger is Nick Luken, a second-year student at The Ohio State University, majoring in English and minoring in professional writing. Nick graduated from Roger Bacon, a Franciscan high school in Cincinnati, in 2012.

“Alleluia.” At every Mass, just before the Gospel, we say this word over and over. Literally, the word means “praise God.” That’s not surprising, considering that so much of the Mass says just that, although in different terms: praise God. “Hosanna in the highest,” we proclaim as the Eucharistic Prayer begins. “Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ,” we say at the conclusion of each Gospel reading. And of course there’s the Gloria, a whole song dedicated to praising each person of the Trinity. And that’s just the Mass. We see people praising God in the Bible, in the lives of the saints, and in the prayers of the countless people who have come before us.

But something seems odd here: if we believe that God is omnipotent and omniscient, then why do we need to praise Him? We can tell God that He’s great (and He is), but that won’t make Him any greater. Plus, He must already know He’s great if He’s omniscient. God doesn’t really need our praise, but nevertheless, people of faith have made sure to praise God for millennia. If God doesn’t need our praise, why is it that we have praised Him for as long as we have believed in God?

One of the most common explanations I’ve heard for praising God is the idea that God is worthy of all the praise in the world. After all, He did make . . . everything! That does make Him obviously praiseworthy, and I think that we should praise God because He deserves our praise. But I’m not sure if that’s the best explanation I’ve heard.

I think the best explanation I’ve heard for why we praise God is that praising God improves our relationship with Him. I don’t mean that in a trivial way–I don’t believe that the only purpose of praise is bribery, trying to butter God up to get our prayers answered. I think praise improves our relationship with God in a much deeper way. Praising God is like giving a friend or a family member a sincere compliment. If you were to tell a true friend that he or she means a lot to you, you probably wouldn’t be doing it just to get something from your friend. You’d be doing it to show your friend that you care about him or her, and by doing so, you’d deepen your relationship with your friend. The same thing happens when we praise God.

Deepening our relationship with God isn’t the only purpose of giving Him praise, but I think that it’s a very profound purpose. There’s just something uniquely wonderful about praising God that brings us closer to Him.

Featured image: 142029790/ shutterstock.com

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Called to Joy...

Posted on Sep 4, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Joy, like love, is often a decision, an act of the will, rather than a spontaneous emotion. St. Francis knew this when he told his companion, Brother Leo, that perfect joy would be not reacting to violent rejection by the gatekeeper at his own friary. Pope Francis knew this when he wrote his apostolic exhortation on The Joy of the Gospel. Certainly Jesus knew it when he told his disciples, shortly before his own violent death, “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete” (John 15:11). He was talking about the image of the vine and the branches, the pruning that must take place for a fruitful life.

IMG_2207I discovered this truth myself when I was writing Pope Francis and Our Call to Joy. My life at the time wasn’t especially happy or peaceful. But the work of writing pushed me to stay connected to the Gospel, to the roots of my own spiritual growth, to the encouraging words of Pope Francis. I surrounded myself with photos of the smiling, compassionate, down-to-earth pope. All of these things helped me to find the inner peace that’s a big part of Christian joy.

Now that the book is done, I’m called to be faithful to my own words. It can be a challenge some days, but it’s a challenge I choose to accept—with joy.

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Skirting Heresy...

Posted on Sep 3, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

“Mysticism begins in mist and ends in schism.” That’s a pastoral adage calling for a degree of critical caution in dealing with people claiming to have personal revelations directly from God.

Skirting Heresy: The Life and Times of Margery Kempe by Elizabeth MacDonald is a brilliant retelling of the story of a medieval mystic, Margery Kempe, who suffered greatly because of her mystical experiences. The book’s narrative is based on Kempe’s dictated memoir, The Book of Margery Kempe, as well as historical research into the world in which Margery lived—from 1373 to her death around 1438-1440.

Margery Brunham was the daughter of a popular mayor of Bishop’s Lynn, a town on the eastern shore of England, about 100 miles from London. Married to John Kempe, Margery bore 14 children.

After the birth of her first son, Margery became ill and feverish. During that time she experienced demonic visitations that shook her soul. When the fever finally left her, she claimed she saw a vision of Jesus who reassured her that he would never abandon her. In time Margery received the gift of tears and became something of a public nuisance because of her loud wailing and crying in public places, especially churches.

With her husband’s permission, Margery embarked on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land that took two years and brought her into deeper communion with the Lord Jesus. Margery claimed that Jesus, his Blessed Mother, and a number of saints spoke to her and told her how to conduct herself and what to say to crowds, clergy, and civil magistrates whom she encountered.

Because of her public preaching about Jesus and her rebukes of corrupt clergy, Margery faced accusations of being a Lollard, a member of a pre-reformation lay movement that denounced wayward clerics and called for radical reform of the Church. Much of the story of Margery has to do with her brush with ecclesiastical condemnation as she bravely pushed beyond the norms of early 15th century Church customs and laws. Margery did indeed skirt heresy, as the book is entitled.

This book recounts Margery’s life and vividly recalls the social conditions of the Church in the confusing times of pre-Reformation England. Skirting Heresy is a marvelous, fascinating  and informative narrative by Elizabeth MacDonald.  I highly recommend it.

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Did Pope Francis predict his own death?...

Posted on Aug 19, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

During the presser on the airplane returning from Korea, the Pope spoke of the role, rather the “institution” of Pope Emeritus.  He also spoke of his own death.

Keep in mind that some time ago I predicted that Pope Francis, now 77, would resign when he reaches 80 years old.  And before any of you go running around declaring that I want him to resign, please note that I simply think that that is what he will do.

I, frankly, am not pleased about this Pope Emeritus thing.  I greatly respect Benedict XVI.  I think I understand why he abdicated, but I can’t say I am happy about it, for various reasons I need not go into here.

Let’s have look at some things the Holy Father Pope Francis said on the airplane.  HERE 

First, the Pope Emeritus stuff.  It’s a little disjointed, but you can get what he is driving at:

German journalist from KNA:

What type of relationship is there between you and Benedict XVI? Is there an habitual exchange of opinions and ideas? Is there a common project after this encyclical?

Pope Francis:

We see each other. Before leaving I went to see him. He, two weeks prior, had sent me an interesting text and he asked me an opinion. We have a normal relationship because I go back to this idea and maybe a theologian doesn’t like it. But, I think that the pope emeritus is not an exception. After so many centuries, he’s [Benedict's] the first emeritus and let’s think that if i am aged and don’t have the strength, but it was a beautiful gesture of nobility and also humility and courage. But, I think that 70 years ago also the bishops emeritus were an exception. They didn’t exist. Today, the bishops emeritus are an institution. [NB] I think that the pope emeritus is already an institution. Why? Our lives are getting longer and at a certain age there is not the capacity to govern well, because the body tires and health perhaps is good but there is the capacity to carry forward all of the problems like those in the governance of the church. I think that Pope Benedict made this gesture of popes emeritus. I repeat that maybe some theologian would say this isn’t just, but i think like this. The centuries will tell if it’s like this or not, we’ll see, but if you can to say to me, ‘but do you think that one day if you don’t feel like it, will you go on?’ But, I would do the same. I would do the same. I will pray, but I would do the same. He opened a door that is institutional not exceptional.

[...]

Pretty clear.

On the other hand, when answering a question about how he handle’s his popularity…

French journalist Anais Martin, French Radio:

In Rio, when the crowd yelled “Francesco, Francesco!” you responded “Cristo, Cristo!” Today, how do you manage this immense popularity? How do you live it?

Pope Francis:

I don’t know how to tell you. I live it thanking the Lord that his people are happy. I really do that, hoping the best for the people of God. I live it as generosity towards the people. On the inside, I try to think of my sins and my errors not to flatter myself because I know it won’t last long. Two or three years and then (makes a sound and gesture) up to the house of the of the Father.

[...]

I have the sense that His Holiness doesn’t think he will be Pope after another 3 years or so, that he will either have died or he will be in bad enough shape that he will resign.

Please pray for His Holiness daily.

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Prayers for Pope Francis’ family...

Posted on Aug 19, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

I recommend prayers for the Holy Father and members of his family.  Some of the Holy Father’s relatives were killed in an auto accident in Argentina.

According to police reports, the car was being driven by the pope’s nephew, 38-year-old Emanuel Bergoglio, when it slammed into the back of a truck at 12:30 a.m.  The family had been returning from a holiday weekend when the accident occurred.  Killed in the crash were the wife and two children, two-year-old Antonio and eight-month-old Jose Bergoglio.  The pope’s nephew remains hospitalized in serious condition.

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"And now let us begin this journey, the Bishop and people, this journey of the Church of Rome, which presides in charity over all the Churches, a journey of brotherhood in love, of mutual trust. Let us always pray for one another. Let us pray for the whole world that there might be a great sense of brotherhood.

I will now give my blessing to you and to the whole world, to all men and women of good will."

-Papa Francis quote

He does not know you, yet he prays for you.
He will most likely never meet you, yet he loves you.

This is your chance to show your love, for as the Bible teaches, "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven."