Tag - Mass

Pope at Mass: Take time to think about death



(Vatican Radio) With today’s readings, the Church invites us to reflect on the end of the world, but also on the end of our own lives. Pope Francis based his homily on the Gospel reading, where the Lord speaks about the daily lives of men and women in the days before the great Flood, or in the days of Lot – they lived normal lives, eating and drinking, doing business, marrying. But the “day of the manifestation of the Lord” came – and things changed.

The Church, our Mother, wants us to take time to consider our own death, the Pope said. We are all used to the routine of daily life. We think things will never change. But, Pope Francis continued, the day will come when we will be called by the Lord. For some it will be unexpected; for others it might come after a long illness – but the call will come. And then, the Pope said, there will be another surprise from the Lord: eternal life.

This is why the Church asks us to “pause for a moment, take a moment to think about death.” We should not become accustomed to earthly life, as though it were eternity. “A day will come,” the Pope said, echoing the words of Jesus in the Gospel, “when you will be taken away” to go with the Lord. And so it is good to reflect upon the end of our life.

“Thinking about death is not a gruesome fantasy,” the Pope said. “Whether it is gruesome or not depends on me, and how I think about it – but what will be, will be.” When we die, we will meet the Lord – “this is the beauty of death, it will be an encounter with the Lord, it is Him coming to meet you, saying, “Come, come, [you who are] blessed by My Father, come with me.”

The Holy Father concluded his homily with a story about an elderly priest who was not feeling well. When he went to the doctor, the doctor told him he was sick. “Perhaps we’ve caught it in time to treat it,” the doctor told him. “We will try this treatment, and if this doesn’t work, we’ll try something else. And if that doesn’t work, we will begin to walk [together], and I will accompany you to the very end.”

Like the doctor, we too, the Pope said, must accompany one another on this journey. We must do everything we can in order to assist the sick; but always looking toward our final destiny, to the day when the Lord will come to take us with Himself to our heavenly home. 

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


General Audience: Holy Mass is the prayer "par excellence"



Reading: Luke 11,1-4

[1] He was praying in a certain place, and when he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John taught his disciples.” [2]He said to them, “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. [3] Give us each day our daily bread [4] and forgive us our sins for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us, and do not subject us to the final test.”

(Vatican Radio) At his General Audience on Wednesday, Pope Francis resumed his catechesis on the Holy Mass.

The Mass, the Pope said, is prayer – or rather, it is “the prayer par excellence, the highest, the most sublime, and at the same time, the most ‘concrete’ … it is an encounter with the Lord.”

“But what is prayer, really?” Pope Francis asked. “it is first of all dialogue, a relationship with God.” Man, he continued, “was created as a being in personal relationship with God, who finds his full realization only in the encounter with His Creator.”

God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – is Himself “a perfect relationship of love that is unity.” Because we are created in “the image and likeness of God,” we too are called to enter into a perfect relationship of love. And it is the Mass, the Eucharist, that is “the privileged moment to be with Christ, and, through Him, with God and with our brothers.”

But dialogue also means knowing how to remain silent, in the presence of the other. The Holy Father emphasized the importance of moments of silence when we go to Mass – the liturgy, he said, is not a time for chatting, but a time to recollect ourselves, to prepare our hearts for the encounter with Jesus.

Jesus Himself often went off to “a place apart” in order to pray; and His disciples, seeing His intimate relationship with the Father, asked Him how to pray. “Jesus says that the first thing necessary for prayer” is to be able to call God “Father.” Pope Francis said, “If I cannot say ‘Father’ to God, I can’t pray. We have to learn to say ‘Father,’ that is, to put ourselves into His presence with filial confidence.”

In this sense, he continued, we must be like children, able to entrust ourselves entirely to God, as children do with their parents. And, like children, we must also have a sense of wonder, we must “allow ourselves to be surprised.” When we speak to God in prayer, the Pope said, it is not talking to God “like parrots.” Instead it means “entrusting ourselves and opening our hearts to allow ourselves to wonder.” The encounter with God in Mass, he said, “is always a living encounter, it is not a meeting in a museum.”

Pope Francis recalled the Gospel account of Nicodemus’ meeting with Jesus. In their encounter, Jesus spoke about the need to be born again. But how is this possible, the Pope asked? “This is a fundamental question of our faith,” he said, “and this is the desire of every true believer: the desire to be reborn, the joy of beginning anew.” Pope Francis asked his audience, “Do we have this desire? Does each one of us have the desire to always be reborn in order to encounter the Lord? Do you have this desire?”

In fact, the Pope concluded, “the Lord surprises us by showing us that He loves us even in our weakness.” In the Mass, in our encounter with Jesus, “the Lord encounters our fragility in order to bring us back to our first calling: that of being in the image and likeness of God.” This, Pope Francis said, “is the environment of the Eucharist, this is the prayer.”

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


Pope Mass: Enter into the mystery of Jesus



(Vatican Radio) The centre of the mystery of Jesus Christ is that he “loved me” and “gave himself” up to death, for me.

Those were the Pope’s words at Mass at Casa Santa Marta on Tuesday morning, which he said was a meditation on the Passion of the Lord, the Via Crucis. It is good to go to Mass, pray, to be good Christians, continued Pope Francis, but the central question is whether you have entered the mystery of Jesus Christ.

Listen to this report:



His homily began with the First Reading from the Letter to the Romans, in which Saint Paul uses  sin, disobedience, grace, forgiveness, to try to “bring us to understand something.” Behind all this, there is the story of salvation. Therefore, since there are not enough words to explain Christ, Paul “drives us”, because we fall in the midst of the mystery of Christ, “explained the Pope. These contrasts, therefore, are merely steps in the journey to fall into the mystery of Christ, which is not easy to understand. To understand “who is Jesus Christ for you,” “for me,” “for us,” the Pope commented, is to fall into this mystery.

In another passage, Saint Paul, looking to Jesus, says, “He loved me and gave himself for me.” He also notes, “there is someone willing to die for a just person, but only Jesus Christ wants to give life “for a sinner like me.” With these words, said the Holy Father, Saint Paul tries to get us into the mystery of Christ. It’s not easy, “it’s a grace.” Not only the canonized Saints have understood this, but also so many saints “hidden in daily life,” humble people who only put their hope in the Lord: they entered the mystery of the crucified Jesus Christ, “which is a madness,” says Paul noting that if he were to boast of something, only he could boast of “his sins and of the crucified Jesus Christ,” not of the study with Gamaliel in the synagogue, or of any other. “Another contradiction,” is this, which leads us to the mystery of Jesus, crucified, “in dialogue with my sins.”

Pope Francis emphasized that when we go to Mass, we know that he is in the Word, that Jesus comes, but this, the Pope warned, is not enough to enter the mystery:

“Entering into the mystery of Jesus Christ is more, it is to let go into that abyss of mercy where there are no words: only the embrace of love. The love that led him to death for us. When we go to confess because we have sins, we say yes, I must have my sins taken away, let’s say; or ‘God forgive me for my sins, tell your sins to the confessor, and we will be calm and happy. If we do so, we have not entered into the mystery of Jesus Christ. If I go, I go to meet Jesus Christ, to enter into the mystery of Jesus Christ, to enter into that hug of forgiveness of which Paul speaks; of that gift of forgiveness. “

When asked about who is “Jesus for you”, you may answer “the Son of God”, you could say all the Creed, all the catechism, and it is true but we would come to a point where we would not have been able to say that at the centre of the mystery of Jesus Christ, is that he “loved me” and “gave himself up for me”. “Understanding the mystery of Jesus Christ is not a matter of study,” the Pope notes, because “Jesus Christ is understood only by pure grace.”

Thus, a pious exercise helps us: the Way of the Cross, which consists in walking with Jesus when he gives us the “embrace of forgiveness and peace.”

“It’s nice to do the Via Crucis. Do it at home, thinking of moments in the Passion of the Lord. Even the great Saints always advised that we begin the spiritual life with this encounter with the mystery of Jesus Crucified. Saint Teresa advised her nuns: to get to the prayer of contemplation, the high prayer she began with the meditation of the Passion of the Lord. The Cross with Christ. Christ in the Cross. Start and think. And so, trying to understand with the heart that he loved me and gave himself for me, “he gave himself up to death for me.”

Pope Francis reiterated that in the First Reading, Saint Paul wants to bring us to the abyss of the mystery of Christ.

“I am a good Christian, I go to Mass on Sunday, I do works of mercy, I pray, I educate my children well: this is very good. But the question I ask, ‘You do all this, but have you entered the mystery of Jesus Christ?’

Finally, the Pope’s call was to  look at the Crucifix, “icon of the greatest mystery of creation, of all”: “Christ crucified, the centre of history, the centre of my life.”

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


Pope Francis at Mass in Santa Marta: rediscover your roots



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis said Mass in the chapel of the Casa Santa Marta on Thursday morning. In remarks to the faithful following the Readings of the Day, the Holy Father reflected on the importance of keeping tethered to our roots – especially our spiritual roots – and avoiding what he called “psychological self-exile”.

Click below to hear our report



Taking as his starting point the reading from the Book of Nehemiah, in which the prophet recounts Ezra’s reading of the law to the whole assembly of the people before their re-entrance into the holy city, Jerusalem, after some seventy years of Babylonian captivity, Pope Francis recalled the nostalgic tears of Nehemiah – who was cup-bearer to the Persian king, Ataxerxes, at Babylon.

Then Pope Francis recalled the verse of Psalm 137, which says, “Upon the rivers of Babylon, there we sat and wept: when we remembered Sion[.]”

The Pope also reflected on the “nostalgia of migrants,” those who are, “far from home and want to return.”

On the shores of Babylon – real and spiritual

After so many years of exile, the roots “had weakened” but were not lost. Recovering the roots “means recovering the [sense of] belonging of a people,” Pope Francis said. “Without roots,” he continued, “we cannot live: a people without roots or at risk of losing roots, is a sick people”:

“A person without roots, who has forgotten his roots, is sick. Finding, rediscovering their roots and taking the strength to go forward, the strength to flourish and, as the poet says, ‘the power to flourish because – he says – what the tree has borne in fruit comes from what he has buried.’ Just that relationship between the root and the good we can do.”

Along this journey of recovery, however, the Pope noted, there has been “so much resistance”:

“Resistance comes from those who prefer exile, and when there is no physical exile, psychological exile: self-exile from the community, from society, from those who prefer to be uprooted people, without roots. We must think of this psychological self-exile as a disease: it does so much harm. It takes away the roots. It takes away our belonging.”

Recovering the roots

The people, however, go forward, and achieve the day on which they are finally to rebuild their city. The people rally to “restore the roots,” that is to say, to hear the Word of God, which the scribe Ezra read – and the people were weeping once more, but this time their tears were not those shed on Babylonian shores: “It was the weeping of joy, the encounter with their roots, the encounter with their belonging [to God and to one another].” After reading, Nehemiah invites them to feast. This is the joy of those who have found their roots:

“The man and woman who find their roots, who are faithful to their membership, are a man and a woman in joy – joy – and this joy is their strength. From the weeping of sadness to tears of joy: from the weeping of weakness at being far from their roots, far from their people, to the cry of belonging; ‘I’m home’. I am at home.”

The courage to weep

The Pope went on to invite all those at Mass to read the whole of the eighth chapter of Nehemiah, from which the First Reading of the Day was drawn, and to ask whether they have not themselves “let fail the memory of the Lord,” and if they have, whether they are ready start a journey to recover their roots,  or whether they prefer to be closed in on themselves in the soul’s self-imposed exile. Finally, Pope Francis said that if you are “afraid of crying,” you will have, “fear of laughing,” because, after one weeps with sadness, there come tears of joy. We must therefore ask for the grace of the “repentant cry,” the weeping of those who are “sad for their sins,” but also for the weeping of joy, because the Lord “forgave us and has done in our lives what He did with his people.” 

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


Pope at Mass: ‘ask the Lord for the courage to follow Jesus’



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has invited Christians to turn to God to in search of the courage and strength needed to follow Jesus in our lives.

Speaking on Tuesday morning during the homily at Mass in the Casa Santa Marta, the Pope reflected on Jesus’s journey to Jerusalem as the moment of His crucifixion drew near.

Accepting the will of his Father, Jesus – he said – resolutely determined to undertake that journey and announced His intention to the disciples.

Jesus: a model of determination and obedience

“Only once, the Pope recalled, in the Garden of Gethsemane did He ask the Father to ‘remove the cup of wrath He was about to drink’, but each time He submitted to the Father’s will.”

That’s what the Father wants of us, he said, determination and obedience, and He will await with infinite patience.

Francis went on to explain that the disciples did not follow their Master during his journey to Jerusalem.

Jesus was alone 

“At times the disciples did not understand what Jesus was saying or did not want to understand because they were afraid; other times they hid the truth or they were distracted by other things; or – as we can read in today’s Gospel: they searched for an alibi so as not to think about what was awaiting the Lord” he said.

He pointed out that Jesus was alone in his decision because no one understood the mystery of Jesus, and noted that the only one that God sent to strengthen and comfort Him in the Garden of Gethsemane was an angel sent from Heaven.

Ask for the grace to follow Jesus
 
“Let us take some time, the Pope said, to think about Jesus who loved us so much, who walked alone towards the cross: think about Him and thank Him for his obedience and His courage and enter into conversation with Him.”   

Speak to Jesus, Francis concluded, acknowledging all the things He has done for us, acknowledging the patience with which he tolerates our sins and our failures.

“Take some time today – five, ten, fifteen minutes – either before the crucifix or with your imagination, to ‘see’ Jesus walking determinately towards Jerusalem and ask for the grace to have the courage to follow him closely” he said.

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


Pope Francis daily Mass: Familiarity with Jesus sets us free



Those who hear the Word of God and act on it”: this is the concept of the family for Jesus, a concept of family that is “wider than that of the world.” That was the focus of Pope Francis’ homily at the morning Mass at the Casa Santa Marta. In the Gospel reading, Jesus says that it is precisely those who come to Him, and listen to His preaching, who are His “mother,” and His “brothers”: His family. And this, the Pope said, makes us think of the concept of familiarity with God and with Jesus, which is something more than being “disciples” or even “friends”; it is not a “formal” or “polite” attitude, much less a “diplomatic” one. So, he asked, “what does this word – familiarity – which the spiritual fathers of the Church have used so often, and have taught us, actually mean?”

First of all, he said, it means “entering into the home of Jesus, to enter into that atmosphere, to live in that atmosphere that is in the home of Jesus. To live there, to contemplate, to be free. Because the children are free, those who reside in the house of the Lord are free, those who have a familiar relationship with Him are free. Others, to use a word from the Bible, are the children of the ‘slave woman.’ We might say that they are Christians, but they don’t dare to draw near to Him, they don’t dare have this familiarity with the Lord. There is always a distance that separates them from the Lord.”

But familiarity with Jesus, as the great Saints teach us, also means “standing with Him, looking to Him, hearing His Word, seeking to do it, speaking with Him.” We speak to him in prayer, Pope Francis emphasized, and we can pray even in common language: “But Lord, what do you think?” “This is familiarity, isn’t it?” the Pope said. “Always! The saints had it. Saint Teresa is beautiful, because she said she found God everywhere, even among the pans in the kitchen.”

Finally, Pope Francis said familiarity means “remaining” in the presence of Jesus, as He Himself counsels us at the Last Supper; or as we see recorded at the beginning of the Gospel, when John says, “This is the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world. And Andrew and John followed Jesus” and, as it is written, “they remained, stayed with Him all day.”

And this, the Pope repeated once again, is the attitude of familiarity; which is so different from the “goodness” of those Christians who nonetheless keep themselves at a distance from Jesus, saying, “You stay over there, and I’ll stay here.” And so, Pope Francis said, “let us take a step forward in this attitude of familiarity with the Lord. A Christian, with all his problems, who gets on the bus, or on the subway, and speaks internally with the Lord – or at least knows that the Lord is watching him – is close to Him: this is familiarity, closeness, feeling oneself a part of the family of Jesus. Let us ask for this grace for all of us, to understand the meaning of familiarity with the Lord. May the Lord grant us this grace.”

 

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


Pope at Mass: ‘God’s consolation leads to peace’



(Vatican Radio)  Let us ask the Lord to help us recognize true consolation and to conserve it. That was Pope Francis’ message at morning Mass on Monday in the Casa Santa Marta.

Listen to Devin Watkins’ report:



Reflecting on the First Reading in his homily, Pope Francis said the Lord “visited His people and returned them to Jerusalem.” The word “visited”, he explained, is important in salvation history, because “every act of redemption by God is a visitation.”

“When the Lord visits us He gives us joy, that is, He places us in a state of consolation… You have seeded in tears, but now the Lord consoles us and gives us spiritual consolation. Consolation happens not only in a certain moment in time but is a state in the spiritual life of every Christian. The entire Bible teaches us this.”

The Holy Father went on to exhort those present “to wait” for the Lord’s visitation. Some moments are stronger than others, but the Lord “will help us to sense His presence” with spiritual consolation.

He said the Christian must recognize consolation, because there are false prophets who seem to console us but are, in fact, tricking us.

“The Lord’s consolation moves you and makes you increase in charity, love, and hope, also making you weep for your sins. When we observe Jesus and his Passion, we weep with Jesus… You elevate your soul to the things of Heaven and of God, and your soul is quieted in the peace of God. This is true consolation.”

In conclusion, Pope Francis reminded all to thank the Lord in prayer, that He may “pass by” to visit us, helping us to go forward, in hope, to carry our Cross.

“Conserve these traces of consolation in your memory, just as God’s people remembered its liberation… Wait for consolation, recognize it, and conserve it. And, what remains from this passing moment? Peace, for peace is the highest level of consolation.”

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


7th Asian Youth Day inaugurated with Mass in Yogyakarta ‎



(Vatican Radio)  The 7th Asian Youth Day (AYD7) kicked off with a colourful concelebrated Mass Wednesday evening ‎in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, in a colourful and festive show of unity around Christ and his Gospel ‎amidst the continent’s diverse cultures and peoples.
After four days of the preliminary ‘Days in the Dioceses’ (DID) live-in programme in 11 Indonesian ‎dioceses, July 30- August 2, the over 2000 young Catholics from 21 countries converged in Yogyakarta, the cultural ‎and intellectual heartland of Indonesia.  The 7th Asian Youth Day on the theme “Joyful Asian Youth! ‎Living the Gospel in Multicultural Asia,” will conclude on Aug. 6. ‎

Youth participants had begun pouring in at Yogyakarta’s government facility, Jogja Expo Centre (JEC), ‎since early morning, August 2.  After lunch the various national contingents began celebrating with ‎songs and performances and shared their DID experiences of living with local families in dioceses, in ‎preparation for the Eucharistic celebration.

The inaugural AYD7 Mass, that was streamed live by organizers, was presided over by Bangladeshi ‎Cardinal Patrick D’Rozario of Dhaka, chairman of the Office of Laity and Family of the Federation of ‎Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC), under which comes the Youth Desk that organizes the AYD in ‎collaboration with the country’s bishops’ conference body and its youth commission.  Joining Card. ‎D’Rozario at the altar were 52 bishops, including 6 cardinals and 158 priests.  Among the concelebrants ‎were AYD host Archbishop Robertus Rubiyatmoko of Semarang, Indonesian bishops’ president, ‎Archbishop Ignatius Suharyo of Jakarta and President of Indonesian bishops’ Youth Commission, ‎Bishop Pius Riana Prapdi of Ketapang. ‎

Card. D’Rozario began his homily singing a few lines from the hymn, “Rejoice in the Lord always….” ‎setting the mood of his reflection on the theme of the AYD7– “Joyful Asian Youth! Living the Gospel ‎in Multicultural Asia.”  The young people, many in traditional dress and country t-shirts and holding their ‎country flags, joined in with rhythmic clapping accompanied by the piano.  The cardinal explained that ‎the reason for their joy was that Jesus loves them, despite their unworthiness and sinfulness.   He said ‎when they feel sad or without joy, it is then that Jesus loves them most.  Jesus loves them by calling ‎them, choosing them and sending them out to mission, to proclaim His love,  mercy, compassion and ‎healing to others.

Card. D’Rozario compared the AYD gathering to the Pentecost where people of diverse cultures, ‎languages, ethnic groups and nations of Asia were one in the Holy Spirit who manifests Himself in a ‎variety of gifts.   The Holy Spirit was inviting them all to celebrate  their oneness of faith, life and ‎mission at the WYD.  ‎

After dinner, the AYD7 was officially launched with a variety programme in which the participating countries showcased thier cultural richness. 

 

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


Pope celebrates Mass for Solemnity of Corpus Christi



(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday celebrated Mass at the Roman Basilica of St John Lateran which was to be followed by a procession to the Basilica of St Mary Major to mark the Solemnity of Corpus Christi.

In his homily for the feast of Corpus Christi, Pope Francis chose to reflect on one word, “Memory”. The Pope said that “remembering all that the Lord has done for us is the foundation of our own personal history of salvation.” 

Memory, the Holy Father went on to say is important, “because it allows us to dwell in love, to be mind-ful, “never forgetting who it is who loves us and whom we are called to love in return.” 

This Solemnity, Pope Francis underlined, reminds us that in our fragmented lives, the Lord comes to meet us with a loving “fragility”, which is the Eucharist.  

Below find the English language translation of the Pope’s Homily

On this Solemnity of Corpus Christi, the idea of memory comes up again and again.  Moses says to the people: “You shall remember all the way which the Lord your God has led you….  Lest… you forget the Lord your God, who fed you in the wilderness with manna” (Dt 8:2, 14, 16).  Jesus will tell us: “Do this in memory of me” (1 Cor 11:24).  The “living bread, come down from heaven” (Jn 6:51) is the sacrament of memory, reminding us, in a real and tangible way, of the story of God’s love for us. 

Today, to each of us, the word of God says, Remember!  Remembrance of the Lord’s deeds guided and strengthened his people’s journey through the desert; remembering all that the Lord has done for us is the foundation of our own personal history of salvation.  Remembrance is essential for faith, as water is for a plant.  A plant without water cannot stay alive and bear fruit.  Nor can faith, unless it drinks deeply of the memory of all that the Lord has done for us. 

Remember.  Memory is important, because it allows us to dwell in love, to be mind-ful, never forgetting who it is who loves us and whom we are called to love in return.  Yet nowadays, this singular ability that the Lord has given us is considerably weakened.  Amid so much frantic activity, many people and events seem to pass in a whirl.  We quickly turn the page, looking for novelty while unable to retain memories.  Leaving our memories behind and living only for the moment, we risk remaining ever on the surface of things, constantly in flux, without going deeper, without the broader vision that reminds us who we are and where we are going.  In this way, our life grows fragmented, and dulled within. 

Yet today’s Solemnity reminds us that in our fragmented lives, the Lord comes to meet us with a loving “fragility”, which is the Eucharist.  In the Bread of Life, the Lord comes to us, making himself a humble meal that lovingly heals our memory, wounded by life’s frantic pace of life.  The Eucharist is the memorial of God’s love.  There, “[Christ’s] sufferings are remembered” (II Vespers, antiphon for the Magnificat) and we recall God’s love for us, which gives us strength and support on our journey.  This is why the Eucharistic commemoration does us so much good: it is not an abstract, cold and superficial memory, but a living remembrance that comforts us with God’s love.  The Eucharist is flavoured with Jesus’ words and deeds, the taste of his Passion, the fragrance of his Spirit.  When we receive it, our hearts are overcome with the certainty of Jesus’ love.  In saying this, I think in particular of you boys and girls, who recently received First Holy Communion, and are here today in great numbers. 

The Eucharist gives us a grateful memory, because it makes us see that we are the Father’s children, whom he loves and nourishes.  It gives us a free memory, because Jesus’ love and forgiveness heal the wounds of the past, soothe our remembrance of wrongs experienced and inflicted.  It gives us a patient memory, because amid all our troubles we know that the Spirit of Jesus remains in us.  The Eucharist encourages us: even on the roughest road, we are not alone; the Lord does not forget us and whenever we turn to him, he restores us with his love.

The Eucharist also reminds us that we are not isolated individuals, but one body.  As the people in the desert gathered the manna that fell from heaven and shared it in their families (cf. Ex 16), so Jesus, the Bread come down from Heaven, calls us together to receive him and to share him with one another.  The Eucharist is not a sacrament “for me”; it is the sacrament of the many, who form one body.  Saint Paul reminded us of this: “Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread” (1 Cor 10:17).  The Eucharist is the sacrament of unity.  Whoever receives it cannot fail to be a builder of unity, because building unity has become part of his or her “spiritual DNA”.  May this Bread of unity heal our ambition to lord it over others, to greedily hoard things for ourselves, to foment discord and criticism.  May it awaken in us the joy of living in love, without rivalry, jealousy or mean-spirited gossip.

Now, in experiencing this Eucharist, let us adore and thank the Lord for this greatest of gifts: the living memorial of his love, that makes us one body and leads us to unity.  

 

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link


Pope at Mass: God’s power saves us from weakness and sins



(Vatican Radio)  In order to be saved and healed by God we must recognize that are weak, vulnerable and sinful like earthen vessels, said ‎Pope Francis on Friday.  And this will lead us to happiness, he said in ‎his homily at the morning Mass in the Casa Santa Marta chapel in the Vatican.  He was reflecting on the Second Letter to the Corinthians, where St. Paul speaking about the mystery of Christ, says we have this treasure of Christ in our fragility and vulnerability because we are vessels made of clay.

Not being shameful is hypocrisy  

“All of us are vulnerable, fragile, weak, and we need to be healed,” the Pope said.  But recognizing our vulnerability is one of the most difficult things of life.  At times, we try to cover this vulnerability with cosmetics in order to disguise it, pretending it does not exist.  And disguises are always shameful, the Pope said. “They are hypocrisy.”

Temptation to cover our weakness and sins

Pope Francis explained that besides being hypocritical towards others, we are also hypocritical within ourselves believing “to be something else”, hence not needing healing and support.  This, the Pope pointed out, is the path to vanity, pride and self-reference of those who do not feel themselves made of clay and thus seek salvation and fulfilment in themselves.  Instead, as St. Paul says, it is the power of God that saves us because of our vulnerability. Hence we are troubled but not crushed; we are shaken but not desperate; we are persecuted but not abandoned; struck down but not killed.  There is always this relationship between clay and power, clay and treasure. But the temptation, the Pope said,  is always the same: to cover, conceal and not believing we are made of clay.  This is the hypocrisy towards ourselves.

When we accept our weakness, God comes with His salvation and happiness

In this regard, Pope Francis spoke about confession where we confess our sins in a way whitewashing the clay a bit in order to appear strong.  Rather, the Pope said, we must accept our weakness and vulnerability, even if it is “difficult” to do so.  Hence the importance of “shame”.  It is shame that broadens the heart to allow the power of God in –  the shame of being clay and not a silver or gold vase.   When Peter objected to Jesus washing his feet, he did not realize he was made of clay needing the Lord’s power to be saved.  It’s only when we accept we are made of clay that the extraordinary power of God will come and give us the fulfilment, salvation, happiness and joy of being saved, thus receiving the Lord’s “treasure”.

(from Vatican Radio)



Source link