Sunday, June 26, 2016

Sunday Mass Online : Sun. June 26, 2016 - 13th Ord. Time - C


Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 99


Reading 11 KGS 19:16B, 19-21

The LORD said to Elijah:
“You shall anoint Elisha, son of Shaphat of Abelmeholah,
as prophet to succeed you.”

Elijah set out and came upon Elisha, son of Shaphat,
as he was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen;
he was following the twelfth.
Elijah went over to him and threw his cloak over him.
Elisha left the oxen, ran after Elijah, and said,
“Please, let me kiss my father and mother goodbye,
and I will follow you.”
Elijah answered, “Go back!
Have I done anything to you?”
Elisha left him, and taking the yoke of oxen, slaughtered them;
he used the plowing equipment for fuel to boil their flesh,
and gave it to his people to eat.
Then Elisha left and followed Elijah as his attendant.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 16:1-2, 5, 7-8, 9-10, 11

R. (cf. 5a) You are my inheritance, O Lord.
Keep me, O God, for in you I take refuge;
I say to the LORD, "My Lord are you.
O LORD, my allotted portion and my cup,
you it is who hold fast my lot."
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord.
I bless the LORD who counsels me;
even in the night my heart exhorts me.
I set the LORD ever before me;
with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord.
Therefore my heart is glad and my soul rejoices,
my body, too, abides in confidence
because you will not abandon my soul to the netherworld,
nor will you suffer your faithful one to undergo corruption.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord.
You will show me the path to life,
fullness of joys in your presence,
the delights at your right hand forever.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord.

Reading 2GAL 5:1, 13-18

Brothers and sisters:
For freedom Christ set us free;
so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery.

For you were called for freedom, brothers and sisters.
But do not use this freedom
as an opportunity for the flesh;
rather, serve one another through love.
For the whole law is fulfilled in one statement,
namely, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
But if you go on biting and devouring one another,
beware that you are not consumed by one another.

I say, then: live by the Spirit
and you will certainly not gratify the desire of the flesh.
For the flesh has desires against the Spirit,
and the Spirit against the flesh;
these are opposed to each other,
so that you may not do what you want.
But if you are guided by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

Alleluia1 SM 3:9; JN 6:68C

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Speak, Lord, your servant is listening;
you have the words of everlasting life.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelLK 9:51-62

When the days for Jesus' being taken up were fulfilled,
he resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem,
and he sent messengers ahead of him.
On the way they entered a Samaritan village
to prepare for his reception there,
but they would not welcome him
because the destination of his journey was Jerusalem.
When the disciples James and John saw this they asked,
"Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven
to consume them?"
Jesus turned and rebuked them, and they journeyed to another village.

As they were proceeding on their journey someone said to him,
"I will follow you wherever you go."
Jesus answered him,
"Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests,
but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head."

And to another he said, "Follow me."
But he replied, "Lord, let me go first and bury my father."
But he answered him, "Let the dead bury their dead.
But you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God."
And another said, "I will follow you, Lord,
but first let me say farewell to my family at home."
To him Jesus said, "No one who sets a hand to the plow
and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God."

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Saint June 26 : St. Josemaria Escriva : Founder #OpusDei : Patron of Diabetics and Ordinary Life

Josemaria Escriva was born in Spain on January 9, 1902 and died in Rome on June 26, 1975. On 2 October 1928, by divine inspiration, he founded Opus Dei.
1902 - 1975

A brief biography

Saint Josemaria Escriva was born in Barbastro, Spain, on 9 January 1902. He was ordained to the priesthood in Saragossa on 28 March 1925. On 2 October 1928, by divine inspiration, he founded Opus Dei.
Saint Josemaria Escriva was born in Barbastro, Spain, on 9 January 1902. He was ordained to the priesthood in Saragossa on 28 March 1925. On 2 October 1928, by divine inspiration, he founded Opus Dei. On 26 June 1975, he died unexpectedly in Rome in the room where he worked, after a last affectionate glance at a picture of Our Lady. Opus Dei had by then spread to five continents, with over 60.000 members of 80 nationalities, serving the Church with the same spirit of complete union with the Pope and the Bishops which characterised Saint Josemaría. His Holiness Pope John Paul II canonised the Founder of Opus Dei on 6 October 2002. His feast is celebrated on 26 June. The body of Saint Josemaría rests in the prelatic Church of Our Lady of Peace, Viale Bruno Buozzi 75, Rome.

More information
1902 - 0

A Christian Family

St Josemaria recalled gratefully how his parents introduced him step by step to the Christian way of life
1914 - 1918

Footprints in the Snow

It may seem surprising that a little thing like some footprints in the snow was enough to make a teenager take the great decision to give his life to God. But that is the language God often uses to call people, and that is how generous souls who seek God sincerely are capable of responding, with faith.
1918 - 1925

The Seminary Years

Why am I becoming a priest? Our Lord wants something: what is it? And in Latin — not very elegant Latin — … I kept repeating Domine, ut videam! Ut sit! Ut sit! The thing that you want, and that I don’t know — make it happen!”
1925 - 1928

Among the Poor and the Sick

Among the poor, the sick, and the children, he sought the strength needed to set in motion the immense project that God had placed on his shoulders that day. It was a school of suffering where his soul would be tempered to its mission.
1928

The Founding of Opus Dei

“I was 26, had God’s grace and good humor and nothing else. And I had to do Opus Dei”.
It was October 2, 1928, the feast of the Guardian Angels. Father Josemaría would never forget the sound of the church bells…
He was doing a retreat during these first few days of October.
1928 - 1936

The First Years of Opus Dei

1928, 1929, 1930… St Josemaria had to fulfil God’s will, but had no trained assistants, no money, and no patrons.
1936 - 1939

The Civil War

The Spanish Civil War has broken out, together with one of the most violent periods of religious persecution in the history of the Church
1938 - 1945

Beginning Again

After escaping to the other side of Spain and staying briefly in Pamplona, St Josemaria settled in Burgos. From there, in conditions of great deprivation, in a country devastated by war, he carried out an intense apostolate.
1939 - 1946

Helping Priests

“I began to give many, many retreats — they used to last seven days at that time — in a number of Spanish dioceses. I was very young and it embarrassed me."
1946

Traveling to Rome

Christ, Mary, and the Pope had always been the great loves of his life. And now at last he was there, very close to the Vicar of Christ, on the night of June 23-24, 1946.
1946 - 1951

Joy, Sorrow, Hope

“Do you know why the Work has developed so much? Because it’s been treated like a sack of wheat; it’s been beaten and battered about. But the seeds are so small that they haven’t broken. On the contrary, they’ve been scattered to the four winds...”
Hence the Father’s joy when he discovered the canonical way for married people to join Opus Dei.
1946 - 1951

Expansion

Between 1946 and 1960 Opus Dei began its apostolate in several new countries, including Portugal, Italy, Great Britain, France, Ireland, the US, Kenya, and Japan.
These were years of physical suffering. The Father’s diabetes was the cause of great discomfort: he lived with a constant headache, suffered chronic thirst, and gained too much weight, in addition to the other problems that can arise in connection with this illness.
1952 - 1970

Of a hundred souls, we are interested in a hundred

On October 2, 1928, St Josemaria had seen that Opus Dei was for all kinds of people.
1962 - 1965

Vatican II

On January 25, 1959, on hearing that an ecumenical council had been convened, the founder of Opus Dei welcomed the news with great hope and asked everyone to pray “for the happy outcome of this great initiative of an ecumenical council.”
1970 - 1971

Difficult Times

“If we all pray together, if we add just a bit of good will, our Lord will give us his grace and end this dark, terrible night. Then will come the dawn, the morning filled with sunlight.”
1970 - 1975

Catechetical Trips

St Josemaria decided to put his shoulder to the wheel in the task of strengthening people’s faith. Starting in 1970, he went on long catechetical trips to various countries around the world.
1975

I Seek Your Face

St Josemaria’s soul burned with the desire to see God’s face. “Lord, I long to see your face, to contemplate you in wonder!”
1975

I Will Help You More

On June 26, 1975, at 12 noon, St Josemaria died in his office. The news of his death traveled quickly round the world.
Shared from josemariaescriva.info

#Nun Dies with Beautiful Smile and Leaves a Message - RIP Sister Cecilia - SHARE


Sister Cecilia Maria lived in the Monastery of Santa Teresa and San Jose, Santa Fe, Argentina. At 26 she made her first vows as a Discalced Carmelite and reaffirmed her vows in 2003. In January she was diagnosed with tongue cancer then it metastasized to the lungs. This caused her death at age 43.
Before leaving, religious wrote her last wish on a piece of paper:
 "I was thinking how I wanted my funeral. First pray, then make a big party. Do not forget to pray but also to celebrate!. "
The Carmel released this notice:
 Dear brothers, sisters and friends: Jesus! Just a few lines to let you know that our very dear little sister has softly fallen asleep in the Lord, after an extremely painful illness, which she always endured with joy and surrender to her Divine Spouse. We send you all of our affection, thankful for your support and prayer during this time that is so sorrowful and yet also so marvelous. We believe that she flew directly to heaven, but all the same, we ask that you do not fail to pray for her. From heaven, she will reward you. A warm embrace from your sisters of Santa Fe.

Edited from Prensalibre - Images Facebook - Curia Generalizia

#PopeFrancis "God has chosen us, loved us, called us and forgiven us." #Homily FULL TEXT - Video of Mass


Holy Mass Saturday in Gyumri, Armenia, with Pope Francis 
Below, please find the full English translation of Pope Francis’ Homily at Holy Mass in Gyumri, Armenia:
“They shall build up the ancient ruins… they shall repair the ruined cities” (Is61:4).  In this place, dear brothers and sisters, we can say that the words of the Prophet Isaiah have come to pass.  After the terrible devastation of the earthquake, we gather today to give thanks to God for all that has been rebuilt.
Yet we might also wonder: what is the Lord asking us to build today in our lives, and even more importantly, upon what is he calling us to build our lives?  In seeking an answer to this question, I would like to suggest three stable foundations upon which we can tirelessly build and rebuild the Christian life.
The first foundation is memory.  One grace we can implore is that of being able to remember: to recall what the Lord has done in and for us, and to remind ourselves that, as today’s Gospel says, he has not forgotten us but “remembered” us (Lk 1:72).  God has chosen us, loved us, called us and forgiven us.  Great things have happened in our personal love story with him, and these must be treasured in our minds and hearts.  Yet there is another memory we need to preserve: it is the memory of a people.  Peoples, like individuals, have a memory.  Your own people’s memory is ancient and precious.  Your voices echo those of past sages and saints; your words evoke those who created your alphabet in order to proclaim God’s word; your songs blend the afflictions and the joys of your history.  As you ponder these things, you can clearly recognize God’s presence.  He has not abandoned you.  Even in the face of tremendous adversity, we can say in the words of today’s Gospel that the Lord has visited your people (cf. Lk 1:68).  He has remembered your faithfulness to the Gospel, the first-fruits of your faith, and all those who testified, even at the price of their blood, that God’s love is more precious than life itself (cf. Ps 63:4).  It is good to recall with gratitude how the Christian faith became your people’s life breath and the heart of their historical memory.
Faith is also hope for your future and a light for life’s journey.  Faith is the second foundation I would like to mention.  There is always a danger that can dim the light of faith, and that is the temptation to reduce it to something from the past, something important but belonging to another age, as if the faith were a beautiful illuminated book to be kept in a museum.  Once it is locked up in the archives of history, faith loses its power to transform, its living beauty, its positive openness to all.  Faith, however, is born and reborn from a life-giving encounter with Jesus, from experiencing how his mercy illumines every situation in our lives.  We would do well to renew this living encounter with the Lord each day.  We would do well to read the word of God and in silent prayer to open our hearts to his love.  We would do well to let our encounter with the Lord’s tenderness enkindle joy in our hearts: a joy greater than sadness, a joy that even withstands pain and in turn becomes peace.  All of this renews our life, makes us free and open to surprises, ready and available for the Lord and for others. 
It can happen too that Jesus calls us to follow him more closely, to give our lives to him and to our brothers and sisters.  When he calls – and I say this especially to you young people – do not be afraid; tell him “Yes!”  He knows us, he really loves us, and he wants to free our hearts from the burden of fear and pride.  By making room for him, we become capable of radiating his love.  Thus you will be able to carry on your great history of evangelization.  This is something the Church and the world need in these troubled times, which are also a time of mercy. 
The third foundation, after memory and faith, is merciful love: on this rock, the rock of the love we receive from God and offer to our neighbour, the life of a disciple of Jesus is based.  In the exercise of charity, the Church’s face is rejuvenated and made beautiful.  Concrete love is the Christian’s visiting card; any other way of presenting ourselves could be misleading and even unhelpful, for it is by our love for one another that everyone will know that we are his disciples (cf. Jn 13:35).  We are called above all to build and rebuild paths of communion, tirelessly creating bridges of unity and working to overcome our divisions.  May believers always set an example, cooperating with one another in mutual respect and a spirit of dialogue, knowing that “the only rivalry possible among the Lord’s disciples is to see who can offer the greater love!” (JOHN PAUL II, Homily, 27 September 2001: Insegnamenti XXIV/2 [2001], 478).
In today’s first reading, the prophet Isaiah reminds us that the Spirit of the Lord is always with those who carry glad tidings to the poor, who bind up the brokenhearted and console the afflicted (cf. 61:1-2).  God dwells in the hearts of those who love him.  God dwells wherever there is love, shown especially by courageous and compassionate care for the weak and the poor.  How much we need this!  We need Christians who do not allow themselves to be overcome by weariness or discouraged by adversity, but instead are available, open and ready to serve.  We need men and women of good will, who help their brothers and sisters in need, with actions and not merely words.  We need societies of greater justice, where each individual can lead a dignified life and, above all, be fairly remunerated for his or her work.
All the same, we might ask ourselves: how can we become merciful, with all the faults and failings that we see within ourselves and all about us?  I would like to appeal to one concrete example, a great herald of divine mercy, one to whom I wished to draw greater attention by making him a Doctor of the Universal Church: Saint Gregory of Narek, word and voice of Armenia.  It is hard to find his equal in the ability to plumb the depths of misery lodged in the human heart.  Yet he always balanced human weakness with God’s mercy, lifting up a heartfelt and tearful prayer of trust in the Lord who is “giver of gifts, root of goodness… voice of consolation, news of comfort, joyful impulse… unparalleled compassion, inexhaustible mercy… the kiss of salvation” (Book of Lamentations, 3, 1).  He was certain that “the light of God’s mercy is never clouded by the shadow of indignation” (ibid., 16, 1).  Gregory of Narek is a master of life, for he teaches us that the most important thing is to recognize that we are in need of mercy.  Despite our own failings and the injuries done to us, we must not become self-centred but open our hearts in sincerity and trust to the Lord, to “the God who is ever near, loving and good” [ibid., 17, 2), “filled with love for mankind … a fire consuming the chaff of sin (ibid., 16, 2).
In the words of Saint Gregory, I would like now to invoke God’s mercy and his gift of unfailing love: Holy Spirit, “powerful protector, intercessor and peace-maker, we lift up our prayers to you…  Grant us the grace to support one another in charity and good works…  Spirit of sweetness, compassion, loving kindness and mercy…  You who are mercy itself… Have mercy on us, Lord our God, in accordance with your great mercy” (Hymn of Pentecost).

#PopeFrancis "...the altar of Christ’s sacrifice in the fullness of Eucharistic communion" #Ecumenical

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Saturday urged young people in Armenia to be active peacemakers in a world suffering from persecutions and conflict. Speaking at an open air prayer service in Yerevan to leaders of all the Churches in Armenia, the Pope called on people of faith to abandon “rigid opinions and personal interests”, showing instead humility and generosity on the path towards full Christian unity.
During the prayer service for peace in Yerevan’s central Republic Square, the leader of the Armenian Apostolic Church, to which most believers in the country belong, Catholicos Karekin II spoke bluntly about the suffering and conflicts that plague the Caucasus region today. He recalled the fighting that flared again last April in the contested Republic of Nagorno-Karabakh where, he said, “Armenian villages were bombarded”, killing both soldiers and civilians.
The Patriarch also talked again about the Armenian genocide a century ago, noting how countries including Germany, an ally of Turkey during the First World War, have recently moved to recognize the atrocities as a key step towards peace and reconciliation in the region.
Pope Francis, in his words to the Christian leaders, also spoke of that “immense and senseless slaughter”, saying it is not only right, but also a duty to keep the memory of that tragedy alive. But memory, he insisted, must be transformed by love and by the driving force of faith to sow seeds of peace for the future. Memory, infused with love, he said, becomes capable of setting out on new and unexpected paths, where designs of hatred become projects of reconciliation
The Pope also spoke of the wars and conflicts in the Middle East today, fueled by the proliferation of weapons and by the arms trade. Adressing the young people present in the windswept square, he urged them to become peacemakers, “actively engaged in building a culture of encounter and reconciliation”.
Citing a famous 12th century Armenian figure, Catholicos Nerses IV, remembered as a champion of efforts towards church unity, Pope Francis said Christians must find the courage to abandon rigid opinions and personal interests in order to “heal memories and bind up past wounds”. He urged Armenians to work with humility and generosity for a peaceful society, based on dignified employment for all, care for those most in need and the elimination of corruption.
At the end of the prayer service, the Pope and the Patriarch watered seedlings of a vine planted by young Armenians in a model of Noah's Ark, believed to have come to rest after the great flood on the slopes of Mount Ararat, whose snow capped peaks dominate the eastern part of the country
Please find below the English translation of Pope Francis’ address at the Ecumenical Prayer Vigil for Peace in Yerevan
Venerable and Dear Brother, Supreme Patriarch-Catholicos of All Armenians,
Mr President, Dear Brothers and Sisters,
            God’s blessing and peace be with all of you!
            I have greatly desired to visit this beloved land, your country, the first to embrace the Christian faith.  It is a grace for me to find myself here on these heights where, beneath the gaze of Mount Ararat, the very silence seems to speak.  Here the khatchkar – the stone crosses – recount a singular history bound up with rugged faith and immense suffering, a history replete with magnificent testimonies to the Gospel, to which you are heir.  I have come as a pilgrim from Rome to be with you and to express my heartfelt affection: the affection of your brother and the fraternal embrace of the whole Catholic Church, which esteems you and is close to you.
            In recent years the visits and meetings between our Churches, always cordial and often memorable, have, thank God, increased.  Providence has willed that on this day commemorating the Holy Apostles of Christ we meet once again to confirm the apostolic communion between us.  I am most grateful to God for the “real and profound unity” between our Churches (cf. JOHN PAUL II, Ecumenical Celebration, Yerevan, 26 September 2001: Insegnamenti XXIV/2 [2001], 466), and I thank you for your often heroic fidelity to the Gospel, which is a priceless gift for all Christians.  Our presence here is not an exchange of ideas, but of gifts (cf. ID., Ut Unum Sint, 28): we are reaping what the Spirit has sown in us as a gift for each (cf. Evangelii Gaudium, 246).  With great joy, we are walking together on a journey that has already taken us far, and we look confidently towards the day when by God’s help we shall be united around the altar of Christ’s sacrifice in the fullness of Eucharistic communion.  As we pursue that greatly desired goal, we are joined in a common pilgrimage; we walk with one another with “sincere trust in our fellow pilgrims, putting aside all suspicion and mistrust” (ibid., 244).
            On this journey, we have been preceded by, and walk with, many witnesses, particularly all those martyrs who sealed our common faith in Christ by their blood.  They are our stars in heaven, shining upon us here below and pointing out the path towards full communion. Among the great Fathers, I would mention the saintly Catholicos Nerses Shnorhali.  He showed an extraordinary love for his people and their traditions, as well as a lively concern for other Churches.  Tireless in seeking unity, he sought to achieve Christ’s will that those who believe “may all be one” (Jn 17:21).  Unity does not have to do with strategic advantages sought out of mutual self-interest.  Rather, it is what Jesus requires of us and what we ourselves must strive to attain with good will, constant effort and consistent witness, in the fulfilment of our mission of bringing the Gospel to the world.
            To realize this necessary unity, Saint Nerses tells us that in the Church more is required than the good will of a few: everyone’s prayer is needed.  It is beautiful that we have gathered here to pray for one another and with one another.  It is above all the gift of prayer that I come this evening to ask of you.  For my part, I assure you that, in offering the bread and cup at the altar, I will not fail to present to the Lord the Church of Armenia and your dear people.
            Saint Nerses spoke of the need to grow in mutual love, since charity alone can heal memories and bind up past wounds.  Memory alone erases prejudices and makes us see that openness to our brothers and sisters can purify and elevate our own convictions.  For the sainted Catholicos, the journey towards unity necessarily involves imitating the love of Christ, who, “though he was rich” (2 Cor  8:9), “humbled himself” (Phil 2:8).  Following Christ’s example, we are called to find the courage needed to abandon rigid opinions and personal interests in the name of the love that bends low and bestows itself, in the name of the humble love that is the blessed oil of the Christian life, the precious spiritual balm that heals, strengthens and sanctifies.  “Let us make up for our shortcomings in harmony and charity”, wrote Saint Nerses (Lettere del Signore Nerses Shnorhali, Catholicos degli Armeni, Venice, 1873, 316), and even – he suggested – with a particular gentleness of love capable of softening the hardness of the heart of Christians, for they too are often concerned only with themselves and their own advantage.  Humble and generous love, not the calculation of benefits, attracts the mercy of the Father, the blessing of Christ and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.  By praying and “loving one another deeply from the heart” (cf. 1 Pet 1:22), in humility and openness of spirit, we prepare ourselves to receive God’s gift of unity.  Let us pursue our journey with determination; indeed, let us race towards our full communion!
            “Peace I give to you.  Not as the world gives it, do I give it to you” (Jn 14:27).  We have heard these words of the Gospel, which invite us to implore from God that peace that the world struggles to achieve.  How many obstacles are found today along the path of peace, and how tragic the consequences of wars!  I think of all those forced to leave everything behind, particularly in the Middle East, where so many of our brothers and sisters suffer violence and persecution on account of hatred and interminable conflicts.  Those conflicts are fueled by the proliferation of weapons and by the arms trade, by the temptation to resort to force and by lack of respect for the human person, especially for the weak, the poor and those who seek only a dignified life.
            Nor can I fail to think of the terrible trials that your own people experienced.  A century has just passed from the “Great Evil” unleashed upon you.  This “immense and senseless slaughter” (Greeting, Mass for Faithful of the Armenian Rite, 12 April 2015), this tragic mystery of iniquity that your people experienced in the flesh, remains impressed in our memory and burns in our hearts.  Here I would again state that your sufferings are our own: “they are the sufferings of the members of Christ’s Mystical Body” (JOHN PAUL II, Apostolic Letter on the 1700th Anniversary of the Baptism of the Armenian People, 4: Insegnamenti XXIV/1 [2001], 275).  Not to forget them is not only right, it is a duty.  May they be a perennial warning lest the world fall back into the maelstrom of similar horrors!
            At the same time, I recall with admiration how the Christian faith, “even at the most tragic moments of Armenian history, was the driving force that marked the beginning of your suffering people’s rebirth” (ibid., 276).  That is your true strength, which enables you to be open to the mysterious and saving path of Easter.  Wounds still open, caused by fierce and senseless hatred, can in some way be configured to the wounds of the risen Christ, those wounds that were inflicted upon him and that he bears even now impressed on his flesh.  He showed those glorious wounds to the disciples on the evening of Easter (cf. Jn 20:20).  Those terrible, painful wounds suffered on the cross, transfigured by love, have become a wellspring of forgiveness and peace.  Even the greatest pain, transformed by the saving power of the cross, of which Armenians are heralds and witnesses, can become a seed of peace for the future.
            Memory, infused with love, becomes capable of setting out on new and unexpected paths, where designs of hatred become projects of reconciliation, where hope arises for a better future for everyone, where “blessed are the peacemakers” (Mt 5:9).  We would all benefit from efforts to lay the foundations of a future that will resist being caught up in the illusory power of vengeance, a future of constant efforts to create the conditions for peace: dignified employment for all, care for those in greatest need, and the unending battle to eliminate corruption.
            Dear young people, this future belongs to you.  Cherish the great wisdom of your elders and strive to be peacemakers: not content with the status quo, but actively engaged in building the culture of encounter and reconciliation.  May God bless your future and “grant that the people of Armenia and Turkey take up again the path of reconciliation, and may peace also spring forth in Nagorno Karabakh (Message to the Armenians, 12 April 2015).
            In this perspective, I would like lastly to mention another great witness and builder of Christ’s peace, Saint Gregory of Narek, whom I have proclaimed a Doctor of the Church.  He could also be defined as a “Doctor of Peace”.  Thus he wrote in the extraordinary Book that I like to consider the “spiritual constitution of the Armenian people”: “Remember [Lord,] those of the human race who are our enemies as well, and for their benefit accord them pardon and mercy… Do not destroy those who persecute me, but reform them; root out the vile ways of this world, and plant the good in me and them” (Book of Lamentations, 83, 1-2).  Narek, “profoundly conscious of sharing in every need” (ibid., 3, 2), sought also to identify with the weak and sinners of every time and place in order to intercede on behalf of all (cf. ibid., 31, 3; 32, 1; 47, 2).  He became “the intercessor of the whole world” (ibid., 28, 2).  This, his universal solidarity with humanity, is a great Christian message of peace, a heartfelt plea of mercy for all.  Armenians are present in so many countries of the world; from here, I wish fraternally to embrace everyone.  I encourage all of you, everywhere, to give voice to this desire for fellowship, to be “ambassadors of peace” (JOHN PAUL II, Apostolic Letter for the 1700th anniversary of the Baptism of the Armenian People, 7: Insegnamenti XXIV/1 [2001], 278).  The whole world needs this message, it needs your presence, it needs your purest witness.  Kha’ra’rutiun amenetzun! (Peace to you!).

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Saturday June 25, 2016


Saturday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 376


Reading 1LAM 2:2, 10-14, 18-19

The Lord has consumed without pity
all the dwellings of Jacob;
He has torn down in his anger
the fortresses of daughter Judah;
He has brought to the ground in dishonor
her king and her princes.

On the ground in silence sit
the old men of daughter Zion;
They strew dust on their heads
and gird themselves with sackcloth;
The maidens of Jerusalem
bow their heads to the ground.

Worn out from weeping are my eyes,
within me all is in ferment;
My gall is poured out on the ground
because of the downfall of the daughter of my people,
As child and infant faint away
in the open spaces of the town.

In vain they ask their mothers,
“Where is the grain?”
As they faint away like the wounded
in the streets of the city,
And breathe their last
in their mothers’ arms.

To what can I liken or compare you,
O daughter Jerusalem?
What example can I show you for your comfort,
virgin daughter Zion?
For great as the sea is your downfall;
who can heal you?

Your prophets had for you
false and specious visions;
They did not lay bare your guilt,
to avert your fate;
They beheld for you in vision
false and misleading portents.

Cry out to the Lord;
moan, O daughter Zion!
Let your tears flow like a torrent
day and night;
Let there be no respite for you,
no repose for your eyes.

Rise up, shrill in the night,
at the beginning of every watch;
Pour out your heart like water
in the presence of the Lord;
Lift up your hands to him
for the lives of your little ones
Who faint from hunger
at the corner of every street.

Responsorial PsalmPS 74:1B-2, 3-5, 6-7, 20-21

R. (19b) Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.
Why, O God, have you cast us off forever?
Why does your anger smolder against the sheep of your pasture?
Remember your flock which you built up of old,
the tribe you redeemed as your inheritance,
Mount Zion, where you took up your abode.
R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.
Turn your steps toward the utter ruins;
toward all the damage the enemy has done in the sanctuary.
Your foes roar triumphantly in your shrine;
they have set up their tokens of victory.
They are like men coming up with axes to a clump of trees.
R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.
With chisel and hammer they hack at all the paneling of the sanctuary.
They set your sanctuary on fire;
the place where your name abides they have razed and profaned.
R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.
Look to your covenant,
for the hiding places in the land and the plains are full of violence.
May the humble not retire in confusion;
may the afflicted and the poor praise your name.
R. Lord, forget not the souls of your poor ones.

ALLELUIAMT 8:17

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Christ took away our infirmities
and bore our diseases.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelMT 8:5-17

When Jesus entered Capernaum,
a centurion approached him and appealed to him, saying,
“Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.”
He said to him, “I will come and cure him.”
The centurion said in reply,
“Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof;
only say the word and my servant will be healed.
For I too am a man subject to authority,
with soldiers subject to me.
And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes;
and to another, ‘Come here,’ and he comes;
and to my slave, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him,
“Amen, I say to you, in no one in Israel have I found such faith.
I say to you, many will come from the east and the west,
and will recline with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
at the banquet in the Kingdom of heaven,
but the children of the Kingdom
will be driven out into the outer darkness,
where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.”
And Jesus said to the centurion,
“You may go; as you have believed, let it be done for you.”
And at that very hour his servant was healed.

Jesus entered the house of Peter,
and saw his mother-in-law lying in bed with a fever.
He touched her hand, the fever left her,
and she rose and waited on him.

When it was evening, they brought him many
who were possessed by demons,
and he drove out the spirits by a word and cured all the sick,
to fulfill what had been said by Isaiah the prophet:

He took away our infirmities and bore our diseases.

#PopeFrancis "Hear us, O Lord, and have mercy. Forgive us, expiate and remit our sins." at #Armenian Memorial - FULL Video - Text


(Vatican Radio) On Saturday 25th of June, the second day of his Apostolic journey to Armenia, Pope Francis participated in a prayer service at the Tzitzernakaberd Memorial to the Metz Yeghern, or 'Great Evil', as Armenians refer to the 1915 massacres. A dark chapter for this nation which Pope Francis has referred to as 'genocide'.
The monument built in the 1960’s during the Soviet era has become since independence a symbol of national renaissance. While here Pope Francis prayed at length. In a special way during an ecumenical prayer service, held in memory of those fallen in the massacre of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire in 1915, which consisted in the Our Father, the reading of two Biblical passages and an intercessory prayer.
It was a moving ceremony during which Pope Francis also prayed in silence and  laid a wreath of flowers by the 44 metre column which symbolizes the renaissance of Armenia as well as two roses with the Vatican colours, so one yellow one white by the eternal flame of the Memorial complex. 
The Memorial stood out against the backdrop of snow capped Mount Ararat with its biblical connotations and the ceremony was accompanied by mournful music. It  ended with Pope Francis planting a fir tree in a gesture symbolic of hope and peace.
But there was one last significant event during this ceremony, the encounter of Pope Francis with ten descendants of the Armenain refugees who found a safe haven in the Vatican apostolic palace of Castelgandolfo in the 1920’s under the pontificate of  Pius XI. 
During his visit to the Tzitzernakaberd Memorial Complex – which commemorates the ‘Metz Yeghern’ (Armenian for ‘Great Evil’, the massacre of Armenians in the early part of the twentieth century) – Pope Francis signed his name in the ‘book of honour’.
He also left a message in memory of his visit. “I pray here,” he said, “with sorrow in my heart, that there might never more be tragedies like this one, that humanity might never forget, and might know how to overcome evil with goodness; may God grant tot he beloved Armenian people and to the whole world peaceand consolation.”

Afterwards he wrote, “May God preserve the memory of the Armenian people. The memory must not be either watered down or forgotten; memory is the fount of peace and of the future.”
Pope Francis participated in a prayer service at the Tzitzernakaberd Memorial to the Metz Yeghern, or 'Great Evil', in Armenia on Saturday morning, offering an intercessory prayer and extensive silent prayer for the dead.
The ecumenical prayer service, held in memory of those fallen in the massacre of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire in 1915, consisted in the Our Father prayer, the reading of two Biblical passages (Heb 10,32-36 & John 14,1-13), and an intercessory prayer by Pope Francis.
Also present at the prayer service was a small group of descendants of the Armenian refugees whom Pope Pius XI hosted at the papal residence in Castel Gandolfo after the Metz Yeghern.
At the conclusion of the service, the Holy Father stopped briefly to bless and water a tree in remembrance of his visit to the Tzitzernakaberd Memorial.
Below, please find a Vatican Radio English translation of the Pope's intercessory prayer:
Christ, who crowns your saints,
who fulfills the will of your faithful
and looks with love and tenderness upon your creatures,
hear us from your holy heavens,
by the intercession of the holy Generatrix of God
and by the prayer of your saints
and those whom we remember today.
Hear us, O Lord, and have mercy.
Forgive us, expiate and remit our sins.
Make us worthy to glorify you with thankful hearts,
together with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
now and forever. Amen.