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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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Carry God with You, Always...

Posted on Aug 30, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our guest blogger is Teresa Tomeo, syndicated talk show host, motivational speaker, and author of Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag: On-the-Go Devotions from Servant Books

It’s definitely not a coincidence, but what I like to call a “God-cidence.” The whole idea behind my new book Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag; On-the-Go Devotions is to help women get in the habit of carrying the Lord with them every day and everywhere; to find Him in the big and small events of our lives. The book includes a daily reflection on the many areas in the lives of today’s busy women, along with a Scripture verse and a prayer. It’s my hope that women will literally keep this devotional—and Jesus—with them at work, in the car, or in the grocery store line, and peek at it when they need a spiritual pick-me-up. It’s a book designed for those who are just getting to know Jesus and those who also want to get to know Him on a deeper level.

So imagine my delight when I went to read the Holy Father’s Angelus message yesterday morning—as I try to do every Monday morning—and saw that Pope Francis is once again encouraging all believers to do just what Walk Softly intends: to help Christians carry our faith and our Lord with them and take Him into all areas of not only our lives, but the lives of others.

Two days ago, reflecting the Mass readings for the 5th Sunday of Lent, the Holy Father told pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s square that if we’re like the Jews and Greeks in John’s Gospel who “want to see Jesus,” then we need to do a better job of keeping Him close. A great way to do that,  according to the pope, is to carry the Word of God with us. Then, from the window of the papal apartment in the Apostolic palace, the pope held up a booklet of the Gospels letting the faithful know that the booklet, some 50 thousand copies of it, were being distributed in the square by members of Rome’s homeless community.

“This is a beautiful gesture that Jesus approves. Those who are most needy are the ones who are giving us the Word of God. Take it. Keep it in your pocket or in your handbag and read a passage a day. God’s word lights up our path. It will do you good,” he said.

Keeping God and His Word close by and carrying Him with us in our bag and in our pocket:  I couldn’t have said it better myself!

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Carry God with You, Always...

Posted on Aug 30, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our guest blogger is Teresa Tomeo, syndicated talk show host, motivational speaker, and author of Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag: On-the-Go Devotions from Servant Books

It’s definitely not a coincidence, but what I like to call a “God-cidence.” The whole idea behind my new book Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag; On-the-Go Devotions is to help women get in the habit of carrying the Lord with them every day and everywhere; to find Him in the big and small events of our lives. The book includes a daily reflection on the many areas in the lives of today’s busy women, along with a Scripture verse and a prayer. It’s my hope that women will literally keep this devotional—and Jesus—with them at work, in the car, or in the grocery store line, and peek at it when they need a spiritual pick-me-up. It’s a book designed for those who are just getting to know Jesus and those who also want to get to know Him on a deeper level.

So imagine my delight when I went to read the Holy Father’s Angelus message yesterday morning—as I try to do every Monday morning—and saw that Pope Francis is once again encouraging all believers to do just what Walk Softly intends: to help Christians carry our faith and our Lord with them and take Him into all areas of not only our lives, but the lives of others.

Two days ago, reflecting the Mass readings for the 5th Sunday of Lent, the Holy Father told pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s square that if we’re like the Jews and Greeks in John’s Gospel who “want to see Jesus,” then we need to do a better job of keeping Him close. A great way to do that,  according to the pope, is to carry the Word of God with us. Then, from the window of the papal apartment in the Apostolic palace, the pope held up a booklet of the Gospels letting the faithful know that the booklet, some 50 thousand copies of it, were being distributed in the square by members of Rome’s homeless community.

“This is a beautiful gesture that Jesus approves. Those who are most needy are the ones who are giving us the Word of God. Take it. Keep it in your pocket or in your handbag and read a passage a day. God’s word lights up our path. It will do you good,” he said.

Keeping God and His Word close by and carrying Him with us in our bag and in our pocket:  I couldn’t have said it better myself!

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Relax, Regroup, Refocus...

Posted on Aug 28, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our guest blogger is Teresa Tomeo, syndicated talk show host, motivational speaker, and author of Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag: On-the-God Devotions.

Today’s modern American woman is the queen of multitasking—juggling, jobs, children’s homework, housework, church commitments, social commitments…you name it. You probably consider it a good day if you actually have time to read a few ingredients on the back of the cereal box. You get the picture…and that is exactly why I wrote Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag. We’re all busy. But deep down we also know that none of what we do really matters if we’re not rooted in something or someone much bigger than ourselves.

Our often toxic and increasingly secular society tells us just the opposite—that we no longer need anybody, and we certainly don’t need God. We can figure out this thing called life on our own. It’s not really that complicated, because we just live from one experience to the next. Whether it’s the promotion, the weekend in Vegas with your BFF, splurging on that new top, or finding a new boy toy, it’s all about you.

What the world is selling women is a big, fat bill of goods. Deep down you’re looking for something more. But at the same time, you’re trying to figure out how to fit that “something more” in to an already crazy, hectic life and an already stuffed-to-the-gills handbag.

Maybe you’ve already come a long way in your journey with Jesus and just want a daily spiritual pick-me-up, a dose of good news—the Good News actually—to encourage you, to keep you grounded or perhaps to motivate you to dig a little deeper. Maybe you are just making your way back into the arms of Chrisint. Whatever your particular situation, you’ve come to the right place because Walk Softly is designed to fit into any size purse as well as any lifestyle, no matter where you are at in your faith.

It is also my sincere hope that my book Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag just might give you that little kick in the rear we all need from time to time to help us refocus and get us back on the right track. So grab that great bag of yours; get ready to head out the door and take no prisoners, but not without taking this devotional with you. Here’s hoping and praying my book will lighten your load and put a little more spring in your step.

To learn more about Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag: On-the-Go Devotions, click here.

*****
Photo: ingimage

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Relax, Regroup, Refocus...

Posted on Aug 28, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our guest blogger is Teresa Tomeo, syndicated talk show host, motivational speaker, and author of Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag: On-the-God Devotions.

Today’s modern American woman is the queen of multitasking—juggling, jobs, children’s homework, housework, church commitments, social commitments…you name it. You probably consider it a good day if you actually have time to read a few ingredients on the back of the cereal box. You get the picture…and that is exactly why I wrote Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag. We’re all busy. But deep down we also know that none of what we do really matters if we’re not rooted in something or someone much bigger than ourselves.

Our often toxic and increasingly secular society tells us just the opposite—that we no longer need anybody, and we certainly don’t need God. We can figure out this thing called life on our own. It’s not really that complicated, because we just live from one experience to the next. Whether it’s the promotion, the weekend in Vegas with your BFF, splurging on that new top, or finding a new boy toy, it’s all about you.

What the world is selling women is a big, fat bill of goods. Deep down you’re looking for something more. But at the same time, you’re trying to figure out how to fit that “something more” in to an already crazy, hectic life and an already stuffed-to-the-gills handbag.

Maybe you’ve already come a long way in your journey with Jesus and just want a daily spiritual pick-me-up, a dose of good news—the Good News actually—to encourage you, to keep you grounded or perhaps to motivate you to dig a little deeper. Maybe you are just making your way back into the arms of Chrisint. Whatever your particular situation, you’ve come to the right place because Walk Softly is designed to fit into any size purse as well as any lifestyle, no matter where you are at in your faith.

It is also my sincere hope that my book Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag just might give you that little kick in the rear we all need from time to time to help us refocus and get us back on the right track. So grab that great bag of yours; get ready to head out the door and take no prisoners, but not without taking this devotional with you. Here’s hoping and praying my book will lighten your load and put a little more spring in your step.

To learn more about Walk Softly and Carry a Great Bag: On-the-Go Devotions, click here.

*****
Photo: ingimage

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Huge petition askes Pope Francis for clarity about...

Posted on Aug 28, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

I saw this at Breitbart, in which your writer was cited. My emphases and comments:

POPE UNDER PRESSURE AS HALF A MILLION CATHOLICS URGE HIM TO REAFFIRM TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE [I’ll bet there are a lot more.]

More than 500,000 Catholics, including many senior clerics, have signed a petition calling on Pope Francis to reaffirm traditional teaching on marriage and the family after months of confusion over his supposed liberal stance on the issue. [Part of the problem arises from the fact that we often don’t know what the Pope is thinking.  Frankly, I don’t think he would try to change the meaning of marriage… apart from the fact that he really can’t, can he?]

The petition, which was started by U.S. conservative group TFP Student Action, calls on the Pope to “clarify the growing confusion among the faithful” at October’s Synod of Bishops and “implores” him to “prevent the very teaching of Jesus Christ from being watered down”. [The issue is confusion, surely.  The confusion is being created especially by Germans.  We shall see if the Holy Father tamps it down.]

The group accuses “dissident Catholic pressure groups” of attempting to subvert Church teaching on marriage, [yes… that is what they are doing] saying: “They are bombarding the Holy Father and the Synod Fathers right now with messages of revolt against traditional moral values as they clamor for “change, change, change” inside the Church.”

The petition has been signed by five Cardinals as well as numerous bishops and archbishops from across the world. Other major figures who signed the petition include former US senator Rick Santorum.

In October, bishops from around the world will meet in Rome to discuss the role of the family in the modern world and make recommendations to the Pope about how he should approach issues such as divorced and remarried Catholics.

Pope Francis has been noted for his statements that make him appear to support a liberal line on various social issues, most famously when he said “Who am I to judge?” when asked about a supposed gay lobby within the Vatican.

As Catholic blogger Father Z points out, however, nothing he said changed or violated Church teaching on the issue:

If they “accept the Lord”, and “have goodwill”… pretty clearly meaning, “if they are trying to live a good Christian life”, which involves continency and chastity, then I can’t point a finger at them and say they are evil, etc. “Who am I to judge?”, depends on what went before in the same sentence. It does not mean, “Anyone can do anything and we don’t have a right to make a moral judgement.”

Some liberal bishops have also suggested the Church should permit divorced and remarried Catholics to receive Holy Communion under certain circumstances, but such a move is likely to face strong opposition, especially from non-Western bishops. [At least from non-Germans!]

TFP Student Action director John Ritchie said: “After Ireland and the US Supreme Court both approved same-sex marriage, a strong reaffirmation of Church teaching could save the sacred institution of marriage. The Catholic Church is the centre of history. It is the moral compass of the world. As the Church goes, so goes the world.

The Synod is coming and already some people are experiencing Synod Fatigue.

We have to stay focused on the Synod, even though it is going to get pretty tedious, under the onslaught of articles and books that are coming.

Stay the course.

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Threats to the Family...

Posted on Aug 28, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

The pressures on family life today are many…. While all too many people live in dire poverty, others are caught up in materialism and lifestyles which are destructive of family life and the most basic demands of Christian morality. These are forms of ideological colonization.

The family is also threatened by growing efforts on the part of some to redefine the very institution of marriage, by relativism, by the culture of the ephemeral, by a lack of openness to life.

I think of Blessed Paul VI. At a time when the problem of population growth was being raised, he had the courage to defend openness to life in families. He knew the difficulties that are there in every family, and so in his encyclical he was very merciful towards particular cases, and he asked confessors to be very merciful and understanding in dealing with particular cases. But he also had a broader vision: he looked at the peoples of the earth and he saw this threat of families being destroyed for lack of children.

Pope Francis
ADDRESS TO FAMILIES,
MALL OF ASIA ARENA, MANILA
FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015

To learn more about this book, click here.

*****
Photo: Catholic News Service

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Threats to the Family...

Posted on Aug 28, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

The pressures on family life today are many…. While all too many people live in dire poverty, others are caught up in materialism and lifestyles which are destructive of family life and the most basic demands of Christian morality. These are forms of ideological colonization.

The family is also threatened by growing efforts on the part of some to redefine the very institution of marriage, by relativism, by the culture of the ephemeral, by a lack of openness to life.

I think of Blessed Paul VI. At a time when the problem of population growth was being raised, he had the courage to defend openness to life in families. He knew the difficulties that are there in every family, and so in his encyclical he was very merciful towards particular cases, and he asked confessors to be very merciful and understanding in dealing with particular cases. But he also had a broader vision: he looked at the peoples of the earth and he saw this threat of families being destroyed for lack of children.

Pope Francis
ADDRESS TO FAMILIES,
MALL OF ASIA ARENA, MANILA
FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015

To learn more about this book, click here.

*****
Photo: Catholic News Service

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Interesting Statistics about Pope Francis’ Gener...

Posted on Aug 27, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

small numbers at audience

Shortly after the election of Pope Francis, the Wednesday General Audience and the Sunday Angelus made the area around San Pietro a complete madhouse.  I would usually be at the Augustinianum at those times for study or for lunch with a friend and I experienced it myself.

Then, over the next couple years, I noticed that it was easier and easier to get around near San Pietro at those times.  Fewer people were coming.

For the 100th general audience of Pope Francis’ pontificate, the Prefecture of the Papal Household released the average attendance of audiences from 51,6K in 2013 to 14,8K in 2015.  HERE

 

From Sandro Magister:

In occasione della centesima udienza generale [On the occasion of the 100th general audience] del pontificato di papa Francesco, mercoledì 26 agosto, la prefettura della casa pontificia ha comunicato che a questi cento appuntamenti hanno preso parte in totale 3.147.600 persone, così distribuite anno dopo anno:

– 1.548.500 i presenti alle 30 udienze del 2013,
– 1.199.000 i presenti alle 43 udienze del 2014,
– 400.100 i presenti alle 27 udienze del 2015.

Questo significa che anno dopo anno la media dei presenti a ciascuna udienza è stata la seguente: [the average at each audience]

– 51.617 persone nel 2013,
– 27.883 persone nel 2014,
– 14.818 persone nel 2015.

Quindi ogni nuovo anno con la metà di presenze dell’anno precedente. [Each year, half the number of the year before.]

Nè le vacche magre sembrano scongiurate, visto che alla centesima udienza di mercoledì scorso è stato comunicato che sono accorsi solo “in più di diecimila”.  [at the 100th there were “more than 10K”]

La foto sopra è stata scattata durante l’udienza generale di mercoledì 11 febbraio 2015, che era anche la festa della Madonna di Lourdes e la giornata del malato, con l’afflusso di delegazioni dell’Unitalsi.  [Photo at the audience of 11 Feb 2015, Day of the Sick.]

 

Benedict’s audiences exceeded those of John Paul II at times.

The square is emptier and emptier.

And it’s not because of the general secularization.

Romans aren’t going either, so it isn’t the economic slump.

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A Transcendent Hope...

Posted on Aug 27, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

Listen! Young people are the window through which the future enters the world. They are the window, and so they present us with great challenges.

Our generation will show that it can rise to the promise found in each young person when we know how to give them space. This means that we have to create the material and spiritual conditions for their full development; to give them a solid basis on which to build their lives; to guarantee their safety and their education to be everything they can be; to pass on to them lasting values that make life worth living; to give them a transcendent horizon for their thirst for authentic happiness and their creativity for the good; to give them the legacy of a world worthy of human life; and to awaken in them their greatest potential as builders of their own destiny, sharing responsibility for the future of everyone.

If we can do all this, we anticipate today the future that enters the world through the window of the young.

Pope Francis
WELCOME CEREMONY, 28TH WORLD YOUTH DAY,
RIO DE JANEIRO

@Pontifex · October 5, 2013
“Dear young people, you have many plans and dreams for
the future. But, is Christ at the center of each of your plans
and dreams?”

To learn more about this book, click here.

*****
Photo: CNS photo/Ettore Ferrari, EPA

 

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Lights in the Sky...

Posted on Aug 27, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

We were treated to a lovely show of the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights) last night. I’ve personally never seen them this early in the summer, so it was quite a surprise!  I got the camera only towards the end of the display as it was quietening down, but was still able to take a nice photo.
The Northern Lights on Papa Stronsay.
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Three Essential Words...

Posted on Aug 26, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

Sometimes we do things which are not good and which harm others. It is important to have the courage to ask for forgiveness when we are at fault in the family. Some weeks ago, in this very square, I said that in order to have
a healthy family, three words need to be used. And I want to repeat these three words: please, thank you, sorry. Three essential words! We say please so as not to be forceful in family life: “May I please do this? Would you be happy if I did this?” We do this with a language that seeks agreement. We say thank you, thank you for love!

Be honest with me, how many times do you say thank you to your wife, and you to your husband? How many days go by without uttering this word?

And the last word: sorry. We all make mistakes, and on occasion someone gets offended in the marriage, in the family…and harsh words are spoken. But please listen to my advice: don’t ever let the sun set without reconciling. Peace is made each day in the family.

ADDRESS TO PARTICIPANTS IN THE PILGRIMAGE OF
FAMILIES, ST. PETER’S SQUARE
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2013

To learn more about this book, click here.

****

Image: Wikimedia Commons/Agencia Brasil

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Three Essential Words...

Posted on Aug 26, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

Sometimes we do things which are not good and which harm others. It is important to have the courage to ask for forgiveness when we are at fault in the family. Some weeks ago, in this very square, I said that in order to have
a healthy family, three words need to be used. And I want to repeat these three words: please, thank you, sorry. Three essential words! We say please so as not to be forceful in family life: “May I please do this? Would you be happy if I did this?” We do this with a language that seeks agreement. We say thank you, thank you for love!

Be honest with me, how many times do you say thank you to your wife, and you to your husband? How many days go by without uttering this word?

And the last word: sorry. We all make mistakes, and on occasion someone gets offended in the marriage, in the family…and harsh words are spoken. But please listen to my advice: don’t ever let the sun set without reconciling. Peace is made each day in the family.

ADDRESS TO PARTICIPANTS IN THE PILGRIMAGE OF
FAMILIES, ST. PETER’S SQUARE
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2013

To learn more about this book, click here.

****

Image: Wikimedia Commons/Agencia Brasil

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Grow in Friendship with Christ...

Posted on Aug 25, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

Grow in friendship with Christ by listening to his Word. The Lord speaks to us in the depths of our conscience, he speaks to us through Sacred Scripture, he speaks to us in prayer. Learn to stay before him in silence, to read and meditate on the Bible, especially the Gospels, to converse with him every day in order to feel his presence of friendship and love.

Here I would like to emphasize the beauty of a simple contemplative prayer, accessible to all, great and small, the educated and those with little education. It is the prayer of the Holy Rosary. In the Rosary we turn to the Virgin Mary so that she may guide us to an ever closer union with her Son Jesus, to bring us into conformity with him, to have his sentiments and to behave like him.

Indeed, in the Rosary while we repeat the Hail Mary we meditate on the Mysteries, on the events of Christ’s life, so as to know and love him ever better. The Rosary is an effective means for opening ourselves to God, for it helps us to overcome egotism and to bring peace to hearts, to the family, to society and to the world.

Pope Francis
MESSAGE TO YOUNG LITHUANIANS, 6TH NATIONAL
YOUTH DAY, FROM THE VATICAN
FRIDAY, JUNE 21, 2013

To learn more about this book, click here.

*****
Photo: CNS/Reuters

 

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Let Us Become Poets of Prayer...

Posted on Aug 24, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

The Gospel comes to meet us with a really moving and encouraging image. It is the image of Simeon and Anna, who are spoken of in the Gospel of Jesus’ childhood, composed by St. Luke. They were certainly elderly, the “old man,” Simeon, and the “prophetess,” Anna, who was 84 years old. This woman did not hide her age. The Gospel says that they awaited the coming of God every day, with great trust, for many years. They truly wanted to see Him that day, to grasp the signs, to understand the origin.

By then, they were also perhaps more resigned to die first. That long wait, however, continued to occupy their whole life, having no commitments more important than this: to await the Lord and pray. So, when Mary and Joseph went to the temple to fulfill the provisions of the Law, Simeon and Anna moved quickly, inspired by the Holy Spirit (cf. Lk 2:27).

The burden of age and waiting disappeared in an instant. They recognized the Child, and discovered new strength, for a new task: to give thanks for and bear witness to this Sign from God. Simeon improvised a beautiful hymn of jubilation (cf. Lk 2:29-32)—in that moment he was a poet—and Anna became the first woman to preach of Jesus: she “spoke of him to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem” (Lk 2:38).

Dear grandparents, dear elderly, let us follow in the footsteps of these extraordinary elders! Let us too become like poets of prayer: let us develop a taste for finding our own words, let us once again grasp those which teach us the Word of God.

To learn more about this book, click here.

*****
Photo: CNS

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Let Us Become Poets of Prayer...

Posted on Aug 24, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from The Blessing of Family: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis.

The Gospel comes to meet us with a really moving and encouraging image. It is the image of Simeon and Anna, who are spoken of in the Gospel of Jesus’ childhood, composed by St. Luke. They were certainly elderly, the “old man,” Simeon, and the “prophetess,” Anna, who was 84 years old. This woman did not hide her age. The Gospel says that they awaited the coming of God every day, with great trust, for many years. They truly wanted to see Him that day, to grasp the signs, to understand the origin.

By then, they were also perhaps more resigned to die first. That long wait, however, continued to occupy their whole life, having no commitments more important than this: to await the Lord and pray. So, when Mary and Joseph went to the temple to fulfill the provisions of the Law, Simeon and Anna moved quickly, inspired by the Holy Spirit (cf. Lk 2:27).

The burden of age and waiting disappeared in an instant. They recognized the Child, and discovered new strength, for a new task: to give thanks for and bear witness to this Sign from God. Simeon improvised a beautiful hymn of jubilation (cf. Lk 2:29-32)—in that moment he was a poet—and Anna became the first woman to preach of Jesus: she “spoke of him to all who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem” (Lk 2:38).

Dear grandparents, dear elderly, let us follow in the footsteps of these extraordinary elders! Let us too become like poets of prayer: let us develop a taste for finding our own words, let us once again grasp those which teach us the Word of God.

To learn more about this book, click here.

*****
Photo: CNS

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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."