Saturday, April 30, 2011

Giovanni Paolo II - Jesus Christ You are my life

Jesus Christ You are my life, alleluja, alleluja. Jesus Christ You are my life, You are my life, alleluja.

John Paul II invades the streets of Rome

The saints of John Paul II

During his 26 year pontificate, John Paul II named more saints and blessed than all his predecessors combined. He celebrated 147 beatification ceremonies, during which he proclaimed 1,338 blesseds and performed 51 canonizations for a total of 482 saints. For ten years, he was helped in this task by Portuguese Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, as he was the main person responsible for judging the sanctity of the candidate.

Divine Mercy Novena - Last Day

"Today bring to Me The Souls Who Have Become Lukewarm and immerse them in the abyss of My mercy. These souls wound My Heart most painfully. My soul suffered the most dreadful loathing in the Garden of Olives because of lukewarm souls. They were the reason I cried out: 'Father, take this cup away from Me, if it be Your will.' For them the last hope of salvation is to run to My mercy."

Most Compassionate Jesus, You are Compassion Itself. I bring lukewarm souls into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart. In this fire of Your pure love let these tepid souls, who, like
corpses, filled You with such deep loathing, be once again set aflame. O Most Compassionate Jesus, exercise the omnipotence of Your mercy and draw them into the very ardor of Your love; and bestow upon them the gift of holy love, for nothing is beyond Your power. 

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon lukewarm souls who are nonetheless enfolded in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. Father of Mercy, I beg You by the bitter Passion of Your Son and by His three-hour agony on the Cross: let them, too, glorify the abyss of Your mercy. Amen


Agenda for Beatification of John Paul II.

To prepare for the coming beatification, the coffin of John Paul II, has already been transferred. The next event is the vigil at Circus Maximus in Rome, scheduled for Saturday April 30, at 8 p.m.

During the vigil, the life of John Paul II will be honored. The speakers include, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, who was his personal secretary. His spokesman, Joaquin Navarro-Valls, and Sister Marie Simon-Pierre, who will recount how she was miraculously cured through the intercession of John Paul II. 

The ceremony will also have a live satellite connection with five shrines, visited by the pope during his pontificate. They include Krakow, Fatima, Guadalupe, Lebanon and Tanzania. 

Through a live connection, Pope Benedict XVI, will bless the crowd from the Holy See. 

In the evening many churches in Rome will stay open to attend pilgrims and also to offer a quiet site for anyone who wishes to pray in silence. Sunday's beatification is scheduled for10 a.m. Rome time at Saint Peter's Square. 

The same Gospel  read during his funeral will be read in the ceremony. Once the Pope announces the beatification, a large tapestry with the smiling face of John Paul II will shine from the basilica. 

When the ceremony ends, people will be able to venerate the casket of John Paul II, at thecenter of the basilica. 

On Monday May 2, also in St. Peter's Square, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone will celebrate the first Mass of Thanksgiving for the beatification. The mass is scheduled for10.30 a.m Rome time. 

Easter Saturday

Saturday (April 30): "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation"

The first to see the risen Lord was not Peter or one of the apostles, but a woman noted for her demonized living! She had been forgiven much, and loved her Master greatly. She was first at the tomb to pay her respects. Unfortunately for the disciples, they would not believe her account of the Risen Master.  Jesus had to scold his apostles because of their unbelief and stubborn hearts. Are you like the apostles or like Mary – slow to believe or quick to run to Jesus? Do you doubt because you do not see? The Lord makes his presence known to us through the work of the Holy Spirit. He gives us the gift of faith to know him personally and to understand the mystery of his death and rising. Do you believe his word and do you listen to his voice?

After his appearance to his beloved apostles, Jesus commissions them to go and preach the gospel to the whole creation. Their task is to proclaim the good news of salvation, not only to the people of Israel, but to all the nations. This is the great commission which the risen Christ gives to the whole church. All believers have been given a share in this task – to be heralds of the good news and ambassadors for Jesus Christ, the only savior of the world. We have not been left alone in this task, for the risen Lord works in and through us by the power of his Holy Spirit. Do you witness to others the joy of the gospel and the hope of the resurrection?

"Lord Jesus Christ, increase my faith and hope in the power of your resurrection. And give me joy and courage to be your witness to others and to boldly speak of what you have done to save us from sin and death."

Friday, April 29, 2011

Statue of John Paul II unveiled near Vatican

Much to the delight of onlookers, a new statue of John Paul II was unveiled in anticipation of the late pope’s beatification on May 1. The statue is part of series of artistic works that show off the likeness of the pope.

Divine Mercy Novena - Day 8

"Today bring to Me The Souls Who Are Detained in Purgatory and immerse them in the abyss of My mercy. Let the torrents of My Blood cool down their scorching flames. All these souls are greatly loved by Me. They are making retribution to My justice. It is in your power to bring them relief. Draw all the indulgences from the treasury of My Church and offer them on their behalf. Oh, if you only know the torments they suffer, you would continually offer for them the alms of the spirit and pay off their debt to My justice." 

Most Merciful Jesus, You Yourself have said that You desire mercy; so I bring into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls in Purgatory, souls who are very dear to You, and yet who must make retribution to Your justice. May the streams of Blood and Water which gushed forth from Your Heart put out the flames of Purgatory, that there, too, the power of Your mercy may be celebrated. 

Eternal Father, turn Your most merciful gaze upon the souls suffering in Purgatory, who are enfolded in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. I beg You, by the sorrowful Passion of Jesus Your Son, and by all the bitterness with which His most sacred Soul was flooded, manifest Your mercy to the souls who are under Your just scrutiny. Look upon them in no other way but only through the Wounds of Jesus, Your dearly beloved Son; for we firmly believe that there is no limit to Your goodness and compassion. Amen.

Proving Miracles in the Vatican

With every beatification, the Catholic Church promotes models of life. The next step is the canonization, where the Pope declares by 'ex cathedra' that the person in question is in Heaven. Going through these two steps isn't easy. The Vatican takes on a  very meticulous process to approve this. First, a public outburst is needed, but that's just one of several steps. 

St. Catherine of Siena

Feastday: April 29

Catherine, the youngest of twenty-five children, was born in Siena on March 25, 1347. During her youth she had to contend with great difficulties on the part of her parents. They were planning marriage for their favorite daughter; but Catherine, who at the age of seven had already taken a vow of virginity, refused. To break her resistance, her beautiful golden brown tresses were shorn to the very skin and she was forced to do the most menial tasks. Undone by her patience, mother and father finally relented and their child entered the Third Order of St. Dominic.

Unbelievable were her austerities, her miracles, her ecstasies. The reputation of her sanctity soon spread abroad; thousands came to see her, to be converted by her. The priests associated with her, having received extraordinary faculties of absolution, were unable to accommodate the crowds of penitents. She was a helper and a consoler in every need. As time went on, her influence reached out to secular and ecclesiastical matters. She made peace between worldly princes. The heads of Church and State bowed to her words. She weaned Italy away from an anti-pope, and made cardinals and princes promise allegiance to the rightful pontiff. She journeyed to Avignon and persuaded Pope Gregory XI to return to Rome. Even though she barely reached the age of thirty-three her accomplishments place her among the great women of the Middle Ages. The virgin Catherine was espoused to Christ by a precious nuptial ring which, although visible only to her, always remained on her finger.
Excerpted from The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch
Patron: Against fire; bodily ills; Europe; fire prevention; firefighters; illness; Italy; miscarriages; nurses; nursing services; people ridiculed for their piety; sexual temptation; sick people; sickness; Siena, Italy; temptations.
Symbols: Cross; heart; lily; ring; stigmata.

Easter Friday

Easter reminds us of these fundamental requirements of the Christian life: the practice of piety and patience. Through piety we live detached from human frailties, in purity of mind and body, in union with Christ. Through patience we succeed in strengthening our character and controlling our temper so as to become more pleasing to the Lord and an example and encouragement to others, in the various contingencies of social life.
The Resurrection of the Lord truly represents—and for this reason it is celebrated every year—the renewed resurrection of every one of us to the true Christian life, the perfect Christian life which we must all try to live. "The Resurrection of Christ is the sacrament of new life."
My beloved brothers and children! First of all let us look closely at our pattern, Jesus Christ. You see that everything in His life was in preparation for His resurrection. As St Augustine says: "In Christ everything was working for His resurrection."
Born as a man, He appeared as a man for but a short time. Born of mortal flesh, He experienced all the vicissitudes of mortality. We see Him in His infancy, His boyhood, and His vigorous maturity, in which He died. He could not have risen again if He had not died; He could not have died if He had not been born; He was born and He died so that He might rise again.
This is what St Augustine tells us in simple, sublime words.
Excerpted from Prayers and Devotions from Pope John XXIII, edited by John P. Donnelly © 1967, 1966.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Transform the World with Love of the Resurrection

The joy of the Easter season was the focus of Pope Benedict XVI’s reflections during his weekly General Audience today in St. Peter’s Square. Here are the Holy Father's English language remarks:

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
In these first days of Easter the Church rejoices in Christ’s resurrection from the dead, which has brought new life to us and to our world. Saint Paul exhorts us to make this new life evident by putting to death the things of this earth and setting our hearts on the things that are on high, where Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father (cf. Col 3:1-2). Having put on Christ in Baptism, we are called to be renewed daily in the virtues which he taught us, especially charity which binds all the rest together in perfect harmony. By living this new life we are not only interiorly transformed, but we also change the world around us. Charity in fact brings that spiritual freedom which can break down any wall, and build a new world of solidarity, goodness and respect for the dignity of all. Easter, then, is a gift to be received ever anew in faith, so that we may become a constant leaven of life, justice and reconciliation in our world. As believers in the risen Lord, this is our mission: to awaken hope in place of despair, joy in place of sadness, and life in place of death. With Christ, through him and in him, let us strive to make all things new!

* * *

I welcome the newly-ordained deacons of the Pontifical Irish College, together with their families and friends. Dear young deacons: in fulfilling the ministry you have received, may you proclaim the Gospel above all by the holiness of your lives and your joyful service to God’s People in your native land. Upon all the English-speaking pilgrims present at today’s Audience, especially those from Sweden, Australia, the Philippines, Thailand and the United States, I invoke an abundance of joy and peace in the Risen Lord. Happy Easter!

Listen to Chris Altieri's report: RealAudioMP3 

John Paul II to be listed in Guinness Book of Records

He's a man who has every right to enter the Guinness Book of World Records. During his pontificate,  John Paul II, quickly broke all the records set by his predecessors. In fact, just a few months after being elected Pope, he was nicknamed Hurricane Wojtyla. He visited 129 countries. He made 104 trips abroad and another 146 within Italy.  He traveled over 1,200,000 kilometers, which is more than three times the distance from Earth to the Moon or the equivalent of going around the world 30 times. 

Divine Mercy Novena - Day 7

"Today bring to Me The Souls Who Especially Venerate and Glorify My Mercy and immerse them in My mercy. These souls sorrowed most over my Passion and entered most deeply into My spirit. They are living images of My Compassionate Heart. These souls will shine with a special brightness in the next life. Not one of them will go into the fire of hell. I shall particularly defend each one of them at the hour of death."

Most Merciful Jesus, whose Heart is Love Itself, receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls of those who particularly extol and venerate the greatness of Your Mercy. These souls are mighty with the very power of God Himself. In the midst of all afflictions and adversities they go forward, confident in Your Mercy; and united to You, O Jesus, they carry all mankind on their shoulders. These souls will not be judged severely, but Your mercy will embrace them as they depart from this life. 

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon the souls who glorify and venerate Your greatest attribute, that of Your fathomless mercy, and who are enclosed in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. These souls are a living Gospel; their hands are full of deeds of mercy and their hearts, overflowing with joy, sing a canticle of mercy to You, O Most High! I beg You O God: Show them Your mercy according to the hope and trust they have placed in You. Let there be accomplished in them the promise of Jesus, who said to them that during their life, but especially at the hour of death, the souls who will venerate this fathomless mercy of His, He Himself, will defend as His glory. Amen.

Latest Catholic News

Today is the feast of St. Louis de Montfort.

Today is the feast of St. Louis de Montfort.
Louis's life is inseparable from his efforts to promote genuine devotion to Mary, the mother of Jesus and mother of the church. Totus tuus (completely yours) was Louis's personal motto; Karol Wojtyla chose it as his episcopal motto. Born in the Breton village of Montfort, close to Rennes (France), as an adult Louis identified himself by the place of his baptism instead of his family name, Grignion. After being educated by the Jesuits and the Sulpicians, he was ordained as a diocesan priest in 1700.
Soon he began preaching parish missions throughout western France. His years of ministering to the poor prompted him to travel and live very simply, sometimes getting him into trouble with church authorities. In his preaching, which attracted thousands of people back to the faith, Father Louis recommended frequent, even daily, Holy Communion (not the custom then!) and imitation of the Virgin Mary's ongoing acceptance of God's will for her life.
Louis founded the Missionaries of the Company of Mary (for priests and brothers) and the Daughters of Wisdom, who cared especially for the sick. His book, True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin, has become a classic explanation of Marian devotion.
Louis died in Saint-Laurent-sur-Sevre, where a basilica has been erected in his honor. He was canonized in 1947.
Excerpted from Saint of the Day, Leonard Foley, O.F.M.

Easter Thursday

Thursday (April 28): "Jesus opened their minds to understand the scriptures"

Aren't we like the apostles? We wont believe unless we can see with our own eyes. The gospels attest to the reality of the resurrection. Jesus goes to great lengths to assure his disciples that he is no mere ghost or illusion. He shows them the marks of his crucifixion and he explains how the scriptures foretold his death and rising. Jerome, an early church bible scholar, comments: "As he showed them real hands and a real side, he really ate with his disciples; really walked with Cleophas; conversed with men with a real tongue; really reclined at supper; with real hands took bread, blessed and broke it, and was offering it to them. ..Do not put the power of the Lord on the level with the tricks of magicians, so that he may appear to have been what he was not, and may be thought to have eaten without teeth, walked without feet, broken bread without hands, spoken without a tongue, and showed a side which had no ribs." (From a letter to Pammachius against John of Jerusalem 34, 5th century)

The centrality of the gospel is the cross; but fortunately it does not stop there. Through the cross Jesus defeated our enemies – death and Satan and won pardon for our sins. His cross is the door to heaven and the key to paradise. The way to glory is through the cross. When the disciples saw the risen Lord they disbelieved for joy! How can death lead to life, the cross to victory? Jesus shows us the way and he gives us the power to overcome sin and despair, and everything else that would stand in the way of his love and truth. Just as the first disciples were commissioned to bring the good news of salvation to all the nations, so, we, too, are called to be witnesses of the resurrection of Jesus Christ to all who live on the face of the earth. Do you witness the joy of the gospel to those around you?

"Lord Jesus, open our minds to understand the scriptures that we may fully comprehend the truth of your word. Anoint us with your power and give us boldness to proclaim the gospel in word and deed."

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Typical new priest: 31-year-old who prays Rosary, takes part in adoration

The typical member of the ordination class of 2011 is a 31-year cradle Catholic who prayed the Rosary and took part in Eucharistic adoration before entering seminary, according to a survey of 329 of the 480 men slated to be ordained to the priesthood in the United States this year. The survey was conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate.
Among the survey’s findings:
  • the median age of ordinands is 31; the mean age, 34

  • for diocesan ordinands, the mean age is 30; for religious ordinands, it is 36

  • the typical diocesan ordinand has lived in his diocese for 15 years

  • 69% are white, 15% are Latino, 10% are Asian, and 5% are African-American

  • 33% were foreign born, with the typical foreign-born ordinand entering the US in 1998 at age 25; the most typical countries of origin were Colombia, Mexico, the Philippines, Poland, and Vietnam

  • 52% of religious ordinands are foreign-born

  • 8% are converts, with the typical convert entering the Church at age 25

  • 60% had completed college before entering the seminary

  • 47% attended a Catholic elementary school, 39% attended a Catholic high school, and 39% attended a Catholic college; 4% were homeschooled

  • 34% have a relative who was a priest or religious

  • in 82% of cases, both parents were Catholic

  • 37% have four or more siblings; 16% have three siblings

  • 94% had a full-time job before entering the seminary

  • 8% served in the military, and 19% had a parent with a career in the military

  • 66% were encouraged by a parish priest to consider a vocation; 42% were encouraged by their mother, and 27% by their father

  • 52% were discouraged by a parent from considering a vocation; 20% were discouraged by a priest, and 8% were discouraged by a religious

  • ordinands typically first began to consider the priesthood at 16

  • 48% took part in a parish youth group, 30% participated in Boy Scouts, and 23% participated in the Knights of Columbus before entering the seminary

  • 21% attended World Youth Day, and 8% attended a Franciscan University of Steubenville high school youth conference

  • 71% served as altar servers, and 55% served as readers at Mass

  • 70% prayed the Rosary and 65% took part in Eucharistic adoration before entering the seminary

  • Source(s): 

    Divine Mercy Novena - Day 6

    "Today bring to Me The Meek and Humble Souls and the Souls of  Little Children and immerse them in My mercy. These souls most closely resemble My Heart. They strengthened Me during My bitter agony. I saw them as earthly Angels who will keep vigil at My altars. I pour out upon them whole torrents of grace. Only the humble soul is capable of receiving My grace I favor humble souls with My confidence." 

    Most Merciful Jesus, You Yourself have said, "Learn from Me for I am meek and humble of heart." Receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart all meek and humble souls and the souls of little children. These souls send all heaven into ecstasy, and they are the heavenly Father's favorites. They are a sweet-smelling bouquet before the throne of God; God Himself takes delight in their fragrance. These souls have a permanent abode in Your Most Compassionate Heart, O Jesus, and they unceasingly sing out a hymn of love and mercy. 

    Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon meek souls, upon humble souls and upon little children, who are enfolded in the abode of the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. These souls bear the closest resemblance to Your Son. Their fragrance rises from the earth and reaches Your very throne. Father of mercy and of all goodness, I beg You by the love You bear these souls and by the delight you take in them: Bless the whole world, that all souls together may sing out the praises of Your mercy for endless ages. Amen.

    John Paul II's relic

    A relic containing a sample of blood from John Paul II, will be handed to the Pope during his  beatification ceremony. Days before John Paul II's death, doctors drew blood from the Pope, when preparing for a transfusion. The samples were kept in four small containers. When they were not used, his personal secretary at the time, now Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, kept two of the samples. The other two remained at the hospital Bambino Gesu of Rome, which belongs to the Vatican.  

    The blood is still liquid, since an anticoagulant compound was added to the containers. 

    Latest Catholic News

    Easter Wednesday

    Wednesday (April 27): "Did not our hearts burn while he opened to us the scriptures"

    Why was it difficult for the disciples to recognize the risen Lord? Jesus' death scattered his disciples and shattered their hopes and dreams. They had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. They saw the cross as defeat and could not  comprehend the empty tomb until the Lord appeared to them and gave them understanding.  Jesus chided the disciples on the road to Emmaus for their slowness of heart to believe what the scriptures had said concerning the Messiah. They did not recognize the risen Jesus until he had broken bread with them. Do you recognize the Lord in his word and in the breaking of the bread?

    St. Augustine of Hippo (5th century) reflects on the dimness of their perception: "They were so disturbed when they saw him hanging on the cross that they forgot his teaching, did not look for his resurrection, and failed to keep his promises in mind" (Sermon 235.1). "Their eyes were obstructed, that they should not recognize him until the breaking of the bread. And thus, in accordance with the state of their minds, which was still ignorant of the truth (that the Christ would die and rise again", their eyes were similarly hindered. It was not that the truth himself was misleading them, but rather that they were themselves unable to perceive the truth." (From The Harmony of the Gospels, 3.25.72) How often do we fail to recognize the Lord when he speaks to our hearts and opens his mind to us? The Risen Lord is ever ready to speak his word to us and to give us understanding of his ways. Do you listen attentively to the Word of God and allow his word to change and transform you?

    "Lord Jesus Christ, open the eyes of my heart to recognize your presence with me and to understand the truth of your saving word. Nourish me with your life-giving word and with the bread of life."

    Tuesday, April 26, 2011

    Pope John Paul II sings "Pescador de los Hombres"

    Divine Mercy Novena - Day 5

    "Today bring to Me the Souls of those who have separated themselves from My Church,
    and immerse them in the ocean of My mercy. During My bitter Passion they tore at My Body and Heart, that is, My Church. As they return to unity with the Church My wounds heal and in this way they alleviate My Passion."  
    Most Merciful Jesus, Goodness Itself, You do not refuse light to those who seek it of You. Receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls of those who have separated themselves from Your Church. Draw them by Your light into the unity of the Church, and do not let them escape from the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart; but bring it about that they, too, come to glorify the generosity of Your mercy.

    Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon the souls of those who have separated themselves from Your Son's Church, who have squandered Your blessings and misused Your graces by obstinately persisting in their errors. Do not look upon their errors, but upon the love of Your own Son and upon His bitter Passion, which He underwent for their sake, since they, too, are enclosed in His Most Compassionate Heart. Bring it about that they also may glorify Your great mercy for endless ages. Amen.

    Inside John Paul II's beatification process

    To declare John Paul II a blessed, the pope has not taken the easy road. Those in charge of  investigating the “Life and Miracles” had to meticulously document the facts showing that he was a saint. The process included the questioning of 114 people, those who were both for and against the beatification.

    The group was made up of 35 cardinals, 20 bishops, 11 priests, 5 religious, 3 nuns and 36 lay Catholics, 3 non-Catholics and one Jew. Each one answered 129 questions. Among them were several heads of state and politicians, 2 Orthodox patriarchs, the Anglican primate and a representative from the Jewish community. 

    There was also a team of six historians that spent 16 months carefully recreating his life as a priest and pope. Conclusions were drawn up in three volumes of text that Vatican experts revised before proposing the beatification of Pope John Paul II.

    Our Lady of Good Counsel

    On the Feast of Saint Mark, April 25 1467, the people of Genazzano, Italy witnessed a marvellous sight. A cloud descended upon an ancient church dedicated to Our Lady of Good Counsel. When the cloud disappeared, an image of Our Lady and the Child Jesus was revealed which had not been there before. The image, on a paper-thin sheet, was suspended miraculously.
    Soon after the image's appearance many miracles were attributed to the intercession of Our Lady of Good Counsel. Because of this, Pope Paul II ordered an investigation and the results have been preserved.
    It was later discovered that the very same image had been seen in a church dedicated to the Annunciation in Scutari, Albania. The image in this church was said to have arrived there in a miraculous manner. Now, the image had been transported from Albania miraculously to avoid sacrilege from Moslem invasion.
    A commission of enquiry determined that a portrait from the church was indeed missing. An empty space the same size as the portrait was displayed for all to see.
    Many miracles continue to be attributed to Our Lady of Good Counsel. Pope Saint Pius V, for example, credited victory in the Battle of Lepanto to Her intercession.
    Several Popes have approved the miraculous image. In 1682 Pope Innocent XI had the portrait crowned with gold. On July 2 1753 Pope Benedict XIV approved the Scapular of Our Lady of Good Counsel, and was the first to wear it.
    In 1884 a special Mass and Office of the Feast of Our Lady of Good Counsel was approved by Pope Leo XIII.
    For more than 500 years the image has continued to attract countless pilgrims.
    Although much of the church was destroyed during World War II, the image has remained intact — and continues to be suspended miraculously.
    Patron: Albania, enlightenment.

    Easter Tuesday

    The first eight days of the Easter season form the Easter octave and are celebrated as solemnities of the Lord. Each day is another little Easter. The Alleluia verse is repeated throughout the octave: "This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad. Alleluia!"
    The Easter sequence (Victimae paschali) can also be said or sung during the week.
    The Gospel continues to relate the story of Christ's resurrection — how Mary Magdalene and the other Mary meet Jesus. Jesus tells them "Do not be afraid. Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me."
    During the Easter Season, first reading is from the Acts of the Apostles. Today is Acts 2:36-41. Peter is preaching on the day of Pentecost to the Jews: "The whole House of Israel can be certain that God has made this Jesus whom you crucified both Lord and Christ....You must repent baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." They repented, and 3000 were baptized that day.

    Monday, April 25, 2011

    Interview with Russell Brand in Which he speaks about believing in God

    I'm not a Russell Brand fan but this is a remarkable interview. Brand gets some tough questions from the interviewer, and while he gets excited and even rants a little, he is consistently cogent, intelligent, and well-spoken. He also speaks about believing in God which is very surprising and wonderful. This is practically a master class in how to talk about celebrity while being a celebrity without sounding like a knob.

    Divine Mercy Novena - Day 4

    Today bring to Me those who do not believe in God and those who do not know Me, I was thinking also of them during My bitter Passion, and their future zeal comforted My Heart. Immerse them in the ocean of My mercy."  

    Most compassionate Jesus, You are the Light of the whole world. Receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls of those who do not believe in God and of those who as yet do not know You. Let the rays of Your grace enlighten them that they, too, together with us, may extol Your wonderful mercy; and do not let them escape from the abode which is Your Most Compassionate Heart.

    Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon the souls of those who do not believe in You, and of those who as yet do not know You, but who are enclosed in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. Draw them to the light of the Gospel. These souls do not know what great happiness it is to love You. Grant that they, too, may extol the generosity of Your mercy for endless ages. Amen.

    The miner's embrace

    The Pope will vacation at Castel Gandolfo

    After Easter, Pope Benedict XVI, will leave Rome to rest for a few days at his residence in Castel Gandolfo. 

    During that time, he will receive few visits while he devots his time to regain his strenght for the Beatification of Pope John Paul II.

    On Wednesday, he will fly back to Rome by helicopter, only for a few hours to preside over the General Audience. On Sunday, May 1st, he will preside over the Beatification of Pope John Paul II in St. Peter's square.

    Easter Monday

    The Lord has risen from the dead, as he foretold. Let there be happiness and rejoicing for he is our King forever, alleluia. According to Moses and the prophets Christ was to suffer all "these things and so to enter into His glory". And what was this "glory" which Christ merited by His sufferings and death? It was His resurrection, His ascension into heaven, His sitting at the right hand of the Father, the homage of all the nations. It was especially the glorification of His body which only a few days ago hung mangled and lifeless on the cross.
    Outside of the Easter Octave, the Church celebrates the Optional Memorial of St. Mark, evangelist. He was the author of the second Gospel, was the son of Mary whose house at Jerusalem was the meeting place of Christians. He was baptized and instructed by St. Peter. In about the year 42 A.D. he came to Rome with the Prince of the Apostles. There at the request of the faithful he wrote his Gospel about the year 50 A.D. His Gospel is a record of St. Peter's preaching about Our Lord and pays special attention to the head of the Apostles. The Gospel was written for Roman Gentile converts. It rarely quotes the Old Testament, and is careful to explain Jewish customs, rites and words. It excels in portraying the emotions and affections of both Christ and His hearers. St. Mark preached in Egypt, especially in Alexandria and was martyred there by the heathen.

    Sunday, April 24, 2011

    Divine Mercy Novena - Day 3

    "Today bring to Me all Devout and Faithful Souls,
    and immerse them in the ocean of My mercy. These souls brought me consolation on the Way of the Cross. They were a drop of consolation in the midst of an ocean of bitterness." 

    Most Merciful Jesus, from the treasury of Your mercy, You impart Your graces in great abundance to each and all. Receive us into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart and never let us escape from It. We beg this grace of You by that most wondrous love for the heavenly Father with which Your Heart burns so fiercely.

    Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon faithful souls, as upon the inheritance of Your Son. For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, grant them Your blessing and surround them with Your constant protection. Thus may they never fail in love or lose the treasure of the holy faith, but rather, with all the hosts of Angels and Saints, may they glorify Your boundless mercy for endless ages. Amen.

    Easter Mass at the Vatican - In Pictures

    Pope Benedict XVI walks with his cross as he leads the Easter Mass in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican April 24, 2011.

    In this photo provided by the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, Pope Benedict XVI holds his pastoral staff during the "Urbi et Orbi" (Latin for to the City and to the World) message from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica, at the end of the Easter Mass in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, April 24, 2011.

    Swiss Guards stand in front of St. Peter's Basilica during Easter Mass held by Pope Benedict XVI at St. Peter's Square on April 24, 2011 in Vatican City, Vatican.

    Nuns take pictures before the start of the Easter Mass led by Pope Benedict XVI in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican April 24, 2011.

    A general view of St. Peter's Square during the Easter Mass held by Pope Benedict XVI on April 24, 2011 in Vatican City, Vatican.

    Sunday Snippets - A Catholic Carnival - April 24, 2011

    Sunday Snippets is brought to you each week by RAnn at This, That and the Other Thing.

     I have not posted to Sunday Snippets in a while as I took a break during the Lenten Season.

     This week's blogs are mainly on the messages of Pope Benedict during Holy Week and his Easter Messages. They are truly inspiring and I recommend the reading of these messages in full when you have time. 

    Hope you are inspired: