Posts

Showing posts from May, 2014

"CATHOLICISM: The Pivotal Players" Trailer and More

This project sounds so exciting! Fr. Barron's second documentary will be out soon!

Here's the trailer:



Father Robert Barron has embarked on his next epic film project, CATHOLICISM: The Pivotal Players. He’s currently traveling through Rome, Florence, Naples, Siena, Avignon, and Paris to film the first two episodes on St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Catherine of Siena.

Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary: The Gift of Maternal Love

Image
Today is the feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which recalls Mary's visit with her cousin Elizabeth. This event is also the second joyful mystery of the rosary -- the first being the Annunciation.

Elizabeth had been barren all her life, but in the Annunciation, Mary learned that her cousin was miraculously expecting a child in her old age. Upon hearing this good news, Mary fervently desired to share in Elizabeth's joy and serve her during the last part of her pregnancy. So she went "with haste" to visit Elizabeth Both women rejoiced over their good fortune. What wonderful and exciting news they both had to share! I know what it is like to experience the heartbreak of infertility and can only imagine what a joy it would be to experience pregnancy and to share that bond with another woman. God wants all women to experience the beauty and joy of motherhood, even if they are unable to biologically have children. He wants some of us to adopt children an…

Seven Quick Takes : Pentecost, Doctors of the Church, and a Great New Documentary

Image
1. The Novena to the Holy Spirit starts today! I have it posted on Catholic Fire.



2. The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. In the video above, Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl of Washington discusses Pentecost and the seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

3. This week we celebrated Memorial day with a tribute to our veterans and a wonderful new video on Fr. Emil Kaupan, our local hero and soon-to-be-saint here in Kansas.

4. We were instructed by Fr. Barron on why some saints are called Doctors of the Church.

5. Hope is a theme at this time of the liturgical year, particularly as we celebrate the Ascension. We are reminded that God is with always -- that we are never alone.

6. Great News: Catholic Church grows at a faster rate than the global population

7.  The Messenger of Truth is scheduled to air on PBS this weekend throughout the US! This is a must-see documentary about the courageous Blessed Father Jerzy Popiel…

Pope's Mass: The Joy of Hope

In his Friday morning Mass, Pope Francis talked about having faith, even in challenging times. He said that Christian life is full of trials, but one day sorrows will turn into joy.

POPE FRANCIS
"How many sick people who are at the end of their lives, feel physical pain, but also peace in their souls...This is the seed of joy, the seed of hope and peace. Do you have peace in your soul in moments of darkness, or when faced with challenges, persecution, or when others celebrate your failures? Are you at peace? If you feel peace, you have the seed that will bring everlasting joy.”

Despite the hardships faced in Christian life, the Pope highlighted that Jesus says 'Don't be Afraid.'


SUMMARY OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
Source: Vatican Radio

"We must tell the truth: Christian life not just one big party. Not at all! We cry, we cry so many times. When we are sick; when we have a problem with our son, in the family, with our daughter, or wife, or husband; When we see that …

Messenger of the Truth documentary on Blessed Father Jerzy Popieluszko to air this weekend

MESSENGER OF THE TRUTH, the award-winning documentary on the story of Blessed Father Jerzy Popieluszko, a Polish martyr and 21st century hero of human rights, who was the chaplain of the Solidarity movement in Poland will air Sunday, June 1 and Monday, June 2 in numerous cities throughout the United States. The official MESSENGER OF THE TRUTH website features the full list of times and dates when the documentary will be airing: http://www.messengerofthetruth.com/. 

PBS stations, via public television’s WORLD channels, will broadcast the documentary across the country, including in Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco and St. Louis. The official MESSENGER OF THE TRUTH website features the full list of cities and stations scheduled to air the documentary: http://www.messengerofthetruth.com/.

Narrated by Catholic activist and actor Martin Sheen, MESSENGER OF THE TRUTH chronicles Father Jerzy’s opposition to Poland’s oppressive Communist…

PENTECOST NOVENA

Image
The Novena begins on the day after the Solemnity of the Ascension, Friday of the 6th Week of Easter, even if the Solemnity of the Ascension is transferred to the 7th Sunday.

ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

On my knees I before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wou…

Pope in the Holy Land: Top 10 phrases

Even though it's the Pope's actions that triggered a lot of attention, in his trip to the Holy Land, his speeches were also powerful. Starting with the invitation he made to the president of Israel and of Palestine.

1. "In this site, where the Prince of Peace was born, I would like to invite you, President Mahmud Abbas, and President Shimon Peres, to come together and join me in intense prayer and asking God for the gift of peace. I offer my home at the Vatican to host this meeting of prayer.”

2. "Never again, Lord, never again!'Adam, where are you?' Here we are Lord, shamed by what mankind, created in Your own image and likeness, is capable of doing. Remember us in Your mercy.”

3. "These are roots of all evil, hatred and greed, for money, for the construction and for the sale of weapons. This should make us all think, who is behind it all? Who is it that gives everyone the weapons to prolong conflicts? Let us, in our hearts, pray for these poor people-…

Feast of the Ascension: Never Alone

Hope during difficult times

Image
During difficult times, we may feel distant from God or even abandoned by Him, so how do we draw close, when He seems so far away? 
We all go through periods of our life feeling like this. Many of the saints experienced this during their lives. This is something that I have been personally struggling with for the past few months. I have been praying for Mother Mary's intercession -- asking her to hold me close and wrap me in her arms -- especially during the darkest nights, when I am unable to sleep or my night is filled with pain.
Daily Mass, prayer throughout the day, the rosary and clinging to the Truth are all ways I manage to cope. Today, I was reminded of the reality of His presence, in light of the gospel message for Thursday of the sixth week of Easter "A little while and you will no longer see me and you will no longer see me." John 16: 16
Here's is a new insight (a reminder actually) I obtained from today's The Word Among Us (April 20 - May 31 edition)…

Fr. Barron: Why Are Some Saints Called Doctors of the Church?

Catholic Church grows at a faster rate than the global population

According to the latest statistics from the Vatican, there are now 1.229 billion baptized people in the world, a ten percent increase since 2005. The Church has grown the fastest in Africa, where the number of Catholics increased by 29 percent. Meanwhile, Europe was the only region with a decrease in growth.

The figures, gathered in December 2012 and released recently, show that the number of priests changed from 406,000 in 2005, to 414,000. Bishops showed a similar growth rate, reaching 5,000 today, while seminarians topped 120,000.

However, the numbers of religious shrunk by seven percent during the seven-year period, to 703,000.

The greatest change was in the number of permanent deacons. In 2005, they were over 33,000. Seven years later, they rose to 42,000. While the practice of ordaining permanent deacons is common in the Americas, it grew significantly in Europe.

The Vatican Publishing House published these figures recently in the 2012 edition of the Annuario Pontificio, or Pon…

St. Bernard of Montjoux

Image
Historically today, May 28 is the feast of St. Bernard of Montjoux, patron saint of mountain climbers and skiers.

We know nothing of his early life, other than the fact that he was most likely born of nobility in Italy or France. Tradition tells us that he avoided an arranged marriage in order to devote his life to God.

Saint Bernard entered the Benedictine Order, at the monastery in Aosta, Italy, and was ordained a priest. He served as Vicar General of Aosta, and spent more than four decades performing missionary work in the Alps. He was deeply devoted to the Lord and tirelessly preached the gospel to travelers, offering them comfort and hospitality, and in doing so, converted many.

He is probably most famous for the hospices he built on the summits of passes over the Alps. Many pilgrims from France and Germany would travel over the Alps on their way to Rome, but it was always a possibility that one would die from freezing along the way. In the 9th century a system of hospices had b…

Best images of Pope Francis' trip to the Holy Land

During his three-day trip to the Holy Land, Pope Francis lived and was at the center of historical moments.

Among them, his meeting with refugees by the Jordan River and the Lord's Prayer he recited along with the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. Also, the heartfelt hug he gave a Rabbi and a Muslim leader before the Western Wall.

St. Augustine of Canterbury

Image
The saint of the day for May 27th is St. Augustine of Canterbury, an Italian Benedictine monk who became the first Archbishop of Canterbury in the year 598. He is not be confused with the earlier St. Augustine of Hippo, the famous author of the “Confessions” and “City of God.”

Augustine was the prior of a monastery in Rome when Pope Gregory the Great chose him to lead a party of forty monks to travel to south-eastern England to spread the Gospel there. They landed in 597, and were welcomed by the king of Kent, Ethelbert, who became a Christian along with many of his subjects.

Augustine went to Arles, in France, where he was consecrated archbishop of the English, and then returned to Canterbury to set up his see. The mission prospered, and he founded two more sees, at London and at Rochester in Kent.

Augustine died at Canterbury on May 26, 604.

St. Augustine has been called "Apostle of England" because of his missionary efforts. He is the patron of England.

Memorial Day Tribute: Fr. Emil Kaupan

St. Philip Neri

Image
Today is the feast of one of my favorite saints, St. Philip Neri, who is known for his charm, cheerfulness, and wonderful sense of humor. He was born in Florence, Italy on July 22, 1515, one of four children of the notary Francesco Neri. His mother died when he was very young, but a very capable and competent stepmother filled her place. Although they were related to Italian nobility, the family was quite poor. Philip was a cheerful and friendly boy, and was popular with all who knew him.

At eighteen, Philip was sent to the town of San Germano, where he lived with a childless relative who had a business there to train as an apprentice and heir. Philip had a strong aptitude for business. Soon after his arrival, Philip began speaking of his conversion, which dramatically changed his life. He left his relative’s home and set out for Rome, as he had a vision that he had a mission to fulfill there. He left without money or a specific plan, trusting in God’s providence.

In Rome, he found s…

Memorial Day Tribute 2014

Image
Thank you to all our servicemen and women!


A Prayer for Memorial Day

Remember, Lord, the fallen

Who died in fields of war,

In flaming clouds,

in screaming crowds,

On streets that are no more,

That we today might waken

And greet this day in peace

With grateful prayer for those who bear

The storms that never cease.

Remember friends and strangers,

And those forgotten now,

Whose names are known to you alone,

Before whose love we bow

And ask that you surround them

With mercy’s endless light

That they may live,

and we forgive

The foe they went to fight.

Remember, Lord, the living,

Who bear the pain of loss-

A death she died who stood beside

Her Son upon the cross.

Remember all your children

The dead and those who weep,

And make us one beneath the sun

Where love will never sleep.

Text: 7686D; Genevieve Glen, OSB; © 2005, Abbey of St. Walburga, Virginia Dale, CO. Published by OCP Publications.

Sunday Snippets

Image
Although I have been blogging for 10+ years, I don't recall participating in Sunday Snippets. I remember hosting Catholic Carnival many years ago, so welcome to those who are visiting for the first time. Thank you, This That and The Other, for the wonderful opportunity to participate in this beautiful Catholic blogging community. This That and the The Other shares other Catholic blog posts HERE.



Saturday was the feast of Mary, Help of Christians. Learn more HERE.

One of my favorite Catholic fiction authors has a new book out which I review HERE.

Fr. Barron presents the fascinating background and theology of the controversial  20th century Catholic theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar. Watch it HERE.

Thursday was the feast of St. Rita of Casica, the patron of desperate, impossible causes and situations. She is also the patron saint of abuse victims, difficult marriages, infertility, parenthood, sterility, and widows. Many us can relate to her story HERE and benefit from her insights.

Pope's Mass at Amman: Peace is strengthened if we realize that we are all one human family

Strong winds helped stifle the intense midday heat in Jordan. Amman International Stadium overflowed with enthusiasm and joy at the Pope's visit. He boarded his Popemobile and greeted pilgrims for several minutes. In addition to the flags from Jordan and the Vatican, others carried those from neighboring countries like Lebanon and Iraq.

During his homily, the Pope recalled that the site of the Baptism of Jesus, where he received the Holy Spirit, was close to the stadium. He asked pilgrims to invoke It to obtain peace.

POPE FRANCIS
"Diversity of ideas and people should not trigger rejection or prove an obstacle, for variety always enriches. So today, with fervent hearts, we invoke the Holy Spirit and ask him to prepare the path to peace and unity.”

He also explained that peace requires humility, fraternity, forgiveness and reconciliation, all of them anointed by the Holy Spirit.

POPE FRANCIS
"These signs are the prerequisite of a true, stable and lasting peace. Peace is …

Mary, Help of Christians

Image
Happy Feast of Mary, Help of Christians! 



Prayer to Mary, Help of Christians

Most Holy Virgin Mary, Help of Christians,
how sweet it is to come to your feet
imploring your perpetual help.
If earthly mothers cease not to remember their children,
how can you, the most loving of all mothers forget me?
Grant then to me, I implore you,
your perpetual help in all my necessities,
in every sorrow, and especially in all my temptations.
I ask for your unceasing help for all who are now suffering.
Help the weak, cure the sick, convert sinners.
Grant through your intercessions many vocations to the religious life.
Obtain for us, O Mary, Help of Christians,
that having invoked you on earth we may love and eternally thank you in heaven.

~Saint John Bosco, Franciscan Tertiary and modern Apostle of young people (1815-1888)

St. Jane Antide Thouret

Image
Today is the feast of St. Jane Antide Thouret, founder of the Institute of the Daughters of St. Vincent de Paul.

Jane was born in Sancy, France, in 1765 to a poor family. Her mother died when she was just 16 years old. leaving her to manage the family and help her father raise her younger siblings. At the age of 22, she joined the Sisters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, working among the sick in various hospitals.

During the suppression of the religious during the French Revolution, she was ordered to return home to a secular life. Jane refused, and when she tried to escape the authorities, she was so badly beaten that it took months to recover.

St. Jane Antide Thouret finally returned to Sancy, where she cared for the sick and opened a small school for girls. There she teamed up with other exiled religious and clergy to minister to the sick until she was forced to flee to Switzerland. However, due to anti-Catholic prejudice, the group was forced to move on to Germany. There she f…

Saint Rita of Cascia

Image
The saint of the day for May 22 is Saint Rita of Cascia, religious.

St. Rita was born at Rocca Porena, Italy, in 1386 to Antonio and Amata Lotti, who were quite advanced in years. Rita’s birth was an answer to their prayers. The family was well-known for their charity, which merited them the surname of "Peacemakers of Jesus Christ."

Rita brought much joy to her parents. She was a cheerful, amiable, pious and devout child who spent much of her time in prayer. At the age of twelve, she desired to consecrate herself to God in the religious state. Pious though her parents were, they refused her pleas, but instead gave her away in marriage, at the age of eighteen, to an ill-tempered young man who was the town watchman. The couple had two sons, who inherited their father's temperament. After 18 years of marriage, Rita’s husband was murdered by an old enemy. Her sons swore vengeance on their father’s killers, but through Rita's intercessory prayers, they forgave the offend…

Pope's Audience: If we destroy nature, nature will destroy us

Favorable weather means Pope Francis spends more time greeting pilgrims gathered at St. Peter's Square. This week, the Pope signed a boy's arm cast, and even stopped several times to kiss people with disabilities, who were visibly excited.

During his catechesis, he talked about science. He said, this gift from the Holy Spirit allows people to see nature a gift from God.

POPE FRANCIS
"If God sees Creation as a good and beautiful thing, we must also adopt this attitude, to see Creation as good and beautiful.”

The Pope has frequently expressed his concern over the environment, and it's widely expected to be the topic of his next encyclical. During the audience, he issued another warning.

POPE FRANCIS
"This must be our attitude towards Creation: we must protect it. Because if we destroy Creation, Creation will destroy us. Let's not forget that.”

Near the end, the Pope asked the roughly 50,000 pilgrims present to pray for his upcoming trip to the Holy Land, as we…

Fr. Barron on Hans Urs von Balthasar

Pope's Mass: Money, power and fame do not provide true peace

During his homily at Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis said that the peace that comes from money, power and fame, are only temporary. Only God, he said, can provide everlasting peace.

POPE FRANCIS
"It is a definitive peace! So what is our task? To custody this peace. Safeguard it! It is a great peace, a peace that is not mine, is belongs to another Person who gives it to me, another Person who is in my heart.”

The Pope also explained that God sends the Holy Spirit to make people's hearts be at peace, aware, but not anesthetized.

EXCERPTS OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
Source: Vatican Radio

"For example, it offers us the peace of wealth: 'I am at peace because I have everything I need, everything organized for my whole life , I do not have to worry ... '. This is a peace that the world gives. Do not worry, you won’t have any problems because you have so much money ... the peace of wealth. And Jesus tells us not to trust this peace, because with great realism he tells us: …

St. Bernardine of Siena

Image
The saint of the day for May 20th is St. Bernardine of Siena. A Franciscan friar and preacher, St. Bernardine is known as “the Apostle of Italy” for his efforts to revive the country's Catholic faith during the 15th century.

St. Bernardine was born in 1380 in Tuscany. His parents died when he was seven years old and he was taken in by relatives who raised him as if he were their own.

As a youth, he possessed a strong love for the Blessed Virgin Mary and spoke to her as a child speaks to his mother. She kept him chaste and pure. He had a special devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and later wrote that the Immaculate Heart of Mary was "a fiery furnace of Holy Love."

While still a student at the University of Siena, he took charge of the hospital there when an epidemic killed most of the staff. Later he looked after a bedridden aunt until her death.

At the age of 22, he became a Franciscan. He was an energetic and popular preacher who spent years travelling on foot th…

Book Review: A Subtle Grace by Ellen Gable

Image
Award winning Ellen Gable’s new novel A Subtle Grace is an intriguing historical romance with a plot that hooks you from the very beginning. It’s a fast-paced suspense novel about the O’Donovan family – an established, well-respected, but unconventional Catholic family—who live in Philadelphia in 1896.

The main character is the beautiful 19-year-old Kathleen, a nursing student, who fears becoming an old maid and prays to St. Agnes for a sweetheart. She eventually falls in love with the charming son (Karl) of the local police chief.  Is Karl the man she is meant to marry? She seems convinced but her family has their misgivings.  Dr. Luke, the family’s new physician enters the picture. He is a kind, gentle man who is enamored with her. However, through an unexpected turn of events, a dark shadow is cast down upon her dreams.

Not only is Kathleen’s romance story appealing, but all the subplots and themes keep the reader captivated with the story. Kathleen's younger brother, William,…

Pope Francis: Fix your heart on God

In his Monday morning Mass, the Pope talked about how Christians should deal with every day problems. He said, first and foremost, the heart must be fixed on God.

POPE FRANCIS
"What kind of heart do we have? Is it a fickle heart, that just like a dancer or like a butterfly moves from one place to another…always in motion; Is it a heart that is scared by life's happenings and is hiding and afraid to give witness to Jesus Christ?”

The Pope highlighted that the strength to be fixed on God comes from the Holy Spirit, who always helps Christians move forward.

SUMMARY OF POPE'S HOMILY:
(Source: Vatican Radio)

"We all have many of these, all of us; we are surrounded by many events that move us from one place to another. But we asked for the grace to have a fixed heart, like Paul: so as not to complain about the persecution he went in search to another city; he began to preach there; to heal the sick; realizing that that man had enough faith to be healed; then, calm this ex…

Pope to U.N. Heads: Unborn Children are "Our Brothers and Sisters"

Image
By Stefano Gennarini, J.D.

NEW YORK, May 15 (C-FAM) The highest-ranking U.N. human rights official, Navi Pillay, looked down and fidgeted as Pope Francis delivered an unambiguous pro-life message to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and top U.N. officials.

Unborn children are “our brothers and sisters,” Pope Francis told Pillay and her colleagues gathered in Rome for a coordination meeting. Pillay’s office facilitates the work of the U.N. committees that recently told the Vatican to change Church teaching on abortion.

“Today, in concrete terms, an awareness of the dignity of each of our brothers and sisters whose life is sacred and inviolable from conception to natural death must lead us to share with complete freedom the goods which God’s providence has placed in our hands,” the Pope exhorted.

The message comes at a critical time, when the United Nations is discussing a new development framework to replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) in 2015 and contribute to the eradication …

Pope at Mass: The danger of a hardened heart

Image
(Vatican Radio) We cannot understand the things of God only with our heads, we need to open our hearts to the Holy Spirit too. This was Pope Francis’ message at morning Mass Tuesday at Casa Santa Marta. The Pope also said that faith is a gift of God which we cannot receive if we live our lives “detached” from His people, the Church.

As usual, the Pope reflected on the readings offered by the liturgy of the day, which show us "two groups of people". In the First Reading, "there are those who were scattered because of the persecution that arose" following Stephen’s martyrdom. "They were dispersed with the seed of the Gospel - the Pope said – and they carried it everywhere". At first, they only spoke to the Jews. Then , "almost naturally, some of them" who had come to Antioch, "began to speak to the Greeks". And so, slowly, "they opened the doors to the Greeks, to the pagans”. Once the news arrived in Jerusalem, Barnabas was sent to…

Feast of Our Lady of Fatima

Image
May 13th is the anniversary of the apparition of Our Lady to three shepherd children in the small village of Fatima in Portugal in 1917.  She appeared six times to Lucia, 9, and her cousins Francisco, 8, and his sister Jacinta, 6, between May 13, 1917 and October 13, 1917.

The story of Fatima begins in 1916, when, against the backdrop of the First World War which had introduced Europe to the most horrific and powerful forms of warfare yet seen, and a year before the Communist revolution would plunge Russia and later Eastern Europe into six decades of oppression under militant atheistic governments, a resplendent figure appeared to the three children who were in the field tending the family sheep. “I am the Angel of Peace,” said the figure, who appeared to them two more times that year exhorting them to accept the sufferings that the Lord allowed them to undergo as an act of reparation for the sins which offend Him, and to pray constantly for the conversion of sinners.

Then, on the 13…

St. Rose Venerini

Image
The saint of the day for May 7th is St. Rose Venerini.

Rose was born in Viterbo, Italy in 1656, of a very pious family. She received a good Christian education from her family. As a child, she made a vow to become a nun, but during her youth she was deeply moved by the poverty and ignorance of the young girls of her town, and she began to think that perhaps it would be better to do something for them than to be in a convent.

Rose invited into her house the young girls and women of her neighborhood to pray the rosary together, and she realized that none of them knew how to pray. She began to question them about catechism, and all of them remained silent in surprise. Rose understood that the woman of her time was a slave of ignorance and poverty, destined to the heaviest work, and that no one worried about her well-being. So she prayed intensely to understand the Will of God.

In August 1685, she decided to open a school for the girls of poor families. Each day a little girl passed by t…

Pope's Mass: Stay away from vanity! It's dangerous

During his Monday morning Mass, Pope Francis talked about following God. He explained that Christians should always stay away from vanity, power and greed. That way, they won't try to take advantage of their relationship with God.

POPE FRANCIS
"Sometimes we do things to stand out and feed our vanity. But vanity is dangerous.  It immediately makes us fall into pride, arrogance,  and eventually it all stops there.  We must ask ourselves. How can I follow Jesus? Do I do good deeds in a discreet way, or do I just like to be seen?”

The Pope also talked about 'careerism' meaning those who use the Church to improve their career standing. He prayed so that all Christians may follow their good intentions.

EXCERPT OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
Source: Vatican Radio

"This is not the right attitude. Vanity is not good, vanity causes us to slip on our pride and everything ends there. So I ask myself the question: and me? How do I follow Jesus? When I do good, do I do it under th…

Pope: I weep for crucified Christians

In his Friday morning Mass, Pope Francis talked about the Christians who were crucified in Syria by jihadists, for refusing to reject their faith.

Even though it may be surprising to many, he said,  Christians are indeed still persecuted.

POPE FRANCIS
"We see the joy of so many of our brothers and sisters who have experienced this joy in history. The joy of being deemed worthy to suffer assaults in the name of Jesus. But today, there are still many! In some countries, if you carry the Gospel, you can go to jail. You can't carry a cross, because you'll have to pay a fine. But still, the heart rejoices.”

Reflecting on the Gospel readings, he encouraged Christians to not give into jealousy, describing evil as the son of the devil.

EXCERPT OF THE POPE'S HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)

"They had paid to silence the truth. People can be really evil sometimes! Because when we pay to hide the truth, we are [committing] a very great evil. And that's why people knew wh…

Saint Athanasius

Image
St. Athanasius (296 - 373) was the Church's greatest hero in the battle against Arianism (a heresy that denied Christ's divinity),which, in his lifetime, earned him the title "Father of Orthodoxy". Anthanasius was born into a Christian family in Alexandria, Egypt, where he received a classical education. He was ordained a deacon and later became a priest. Anthanasius served as secretary to Bishop Alexander and accompanied him to the Council of Nicea, which officially condemned Arianism. When Bishop Alexander died, Athanasius succeeded him.

The next 46 years were filled with constant conflict. Anthanasius was exiled on five different occasions under five different emperors. However, his loyalty to the Church never wavered, his courage never weakened even in the face of cruel persecution. For five years he hid in a deep, dry cistern to be safe from their wrath of the Arians and their attempts to assassinate him. The place was known only to one trusted friend who secre…