Category: Mary

Post – Synodal Apostolic Exhortation CHRISTUS VIVIT of The Holy Father FRANCIS To Young People And To The Entire People Of God [Introduction].

Post – Synodal Apostolic Exhortation CHRISTUS VIVIT of The Holy Father FRANCIS To Young People And To The Entire People Of God [Introduction].

 

POST-SYNODAL APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION

CHRISTUS VIVIT

OF THE HOLY FATHER
FRANCIS

TO YOUNG PEOPLE AND TO THE ENTIRE PEOPLE OF GOD


1. Christ is alive! He is our hope, and in a wonderful way he brings youth to our world, and everything he touches becomes young, new, full of life. The very first words, then, that I would like to say to every young Christian are these: Christ is alive and he wants you to be alive!

2. He is in you, he is with you and he never abandons you. However far you may wander, he is always there, the Risen One. He calls you and he waits for you to return to him and start over again. When you feel you are growing old out of sorrow, resentment or fear, doubt or failure, he will always be there to restore your strength and your hope.

3. With great affection, I address this Apostolic Exhortation to all Christian young people. It is meant to remind you of certain convictions born of our faith, and at the same time to encourage you to grow in holiness and in commitment to your personal vocation. But since it is also part of a synodal process, I am also addressing this message to the entire People of God, pastors and faithful alike, since all of us are challenged and urged to reflect both on the young and for the young. Consequently, I will speak to young people directly in some places, while in others I will propose some more general considerations for the Church’s discernment.

4. I have let myself be inspired by the wealth of reflections and conversations that emerged from last year’s Synod. I cannot include all those contributions here, but you can read them in the Final Document. In writing this letter, though, I have attempted to summarize those proposals I considered most significant. In this way, my words will echo the myriad voices of believers the world over who made their opinions known to the Synod. Those young people who are not believers, yet wished to share their thoughts, also raised issues that led me to ask new questions…to be continued. 

Why You Must Stay Awake During Mass

Why You Must Stay Awake During Mass

During Mass, the risen Jesus is present. He comes to walk and talk with us. He opens the Scriptures for us and challenges us to open our hearts to believe in him. He breaks the bread for us just as he did with his apostles and gives himself to us in his Body and Blood.

Jesus taught the first Christians that when we gather on Sabbath, the Lord’s Day, we are not gathering only with family and friends in our parishes but also with his angels and saints for he is also present on the altar. He is the altar on which the lamb would be sacrificed, the priest and the sacrificial lamb as well.

In a mysterious way, our Mass on earth unites us with God and the heavenly choir in the eternal liturgy of heaven. Our worship in the Mass also makes us one Body in Christ with our fellow Catholics everywhere in the world — in every nation from the rising of the sun to its setting.

Thus, we must approach every Mass with a spirit of reverence and respect.

Your experience of the Mass will change if you try to get there a little early so that you have time to settle your mind and prepare your heart.

Try to enter the sanctuary slowly, reverently and without speaking. Spend a few minutes kneeling and talking to Jesus Christ with real intimacy in the silence of your heart.

When Mass begins and the priest processes to the altar, try to keep in mind that he is not only our friend and our pastor but a physical representation of Christ Ordained by God.

Thus, he will pray and offer the sacrifice of the Mass in the person of Jesus Christ — in persona Christi.

The priest calls us into God’s presence, greeting us with the salutation used by God’s angels in the Bible. When he says, “The Lord be with you,” we should have the same joy that the Blessed Virgin Mary had when God’s angel spoke those words to her.

The priest might instead use St. Paul’s apostolic greeting: “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”

In our new Mass translation, the priest will pray that more precise word, “communion,” instead of “fellowship,” which we are used to hearing. The people will also respond with new words: “And with your spirit.” These words too are from St. Paul.

These small changes remind us that in the Mass, God is sharing himself with us in his Spirit of love, and in his Spirit of love, he is drawing all of us into communion as one family of God.

And with your spirit reminds us that we are more than our material bodies. In Baptism, God has poured his love into our hearts through the gift of his Spirit, making each of us a child of God. What a beautiful gift!

As Jesus said that God is Spirit, and he calls us to worship him in spirit and in truth. The Mass is Spiritual as it has been for Christians since the beginning. In our worship, we join ourselves to Christ’s great act of love on the cross. “Through him, with him and in him”, we offer our lives to God and to our brothers and sisters in love.

May Our Lady help us to stay awake during Mass this week and as well better live the Mass.

Who Are The Doctors of The Church?

Who Are The Doctors of The Church?

There are several definitions of the word “doctor,” but they all go back to the Latin word for “teacher.” But in the world of Catholic vocabulary, a church doctor is a confessor and a saint but not necessarily a martyr. The term confessor emanates from the Latin verb confiteri, “to declare openly,” and the title was given to those who led exemplary Christian lives but did not get the chance to die for their faith (martyrs).

The sanctity and learning of the doctors of the church means that they are an excellent examples of knowledge and inspiration towards two important dimensions of Christian life, faith and reason. In this case, the two dimensions are necessary, none of them is mutually exclusive in as much as faith deepens through knowledge, and knowledge get grounded in faith.

It’s either a pope or an ecumenical council (that is a council representing the whole church) can name a doctor, but in practice it has been popes who make the final declaration.

The church did not get enticed to proclaiming doctors until the 13th century when Pope Boniface VIII named the original four Doctors of the church which are: St. Ambrose (340-397 A.D.),St. Jerome (345-420), St. Augustine (354-430), Pope Gregory the Great (540-604). At the same time, Pius, a Dominican friar,(also named a brother Dominican) added Thomas Aquinas, to the list. Meanwhile, presently there are about 33 doctors of the Church.

It is a fact thing that every doctor in the church today has to be a canonized saint. Meanwhile, official sainthood is not so much a formal requirement, but it points to another defining characteristic of sanctity of doctorhood. It also points to one of their chief characteristics, what is usually referred to as an excellent learning.

Their expounding of the faith has been judged to be sound and of benefit to the whole church. But in everything, what matters is that you can lay your trust on a doctor when it comes to theological doctrine.

Solemnity Of The Annunciation Of The Lord – March 25.

Solemnity Of The Annunciation Of The Lord – March 25.

March 25th – Feast of the Annunciation.

Devotion to Mary in the Middle Ages was responsible for forming attitudes towards women in Christian Europe. The idea of chivalry was formed around it: in honoring Mary, men honored, in a sense, the whole female sex.

On March 25 we celebrate the Annunciation—the day on which Mary was told she was to be the Mother of the world’s Redeemer.

Why March 25? Because it is exactly nine months before Christ’s birth celebrations on December 25.

Everything in the Church’s calendar makes sense. When Mary heard the message of the Angel, she was also told that her cousin Elizabeth was to have a child and was indeed already in her sixth month of pregnancy. So count three months on to complete the pregnancy and you come to June—now we celebrate the nativity of St John the Baptist, on June 24.

The old name for the feast of the Annunciation is Lady Day. In an age which fails to respect unborn life, Lady Day is a day for honoring Christ in the womb of His mother, for celebrating the Incarnation and remembering that when the Word was made flesh, it was as an unborn baby.

Do you know that beautiful prayer, the Angelus? It is said at noon. Some churches still ring out an Angelus bell. You are meant to stop what you are doing for just a couple of minutes, to recall the Incarnation and thank God for it.

The Angelus.

The angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.

And she conceived of the Holy Ghost.

Hail Mary…

Behold the handmaid of the Lord.

Be it done unto me according to Thy Word.

Hail Mary…

And the Word was made flesh (genuflect or bow your head).

And dwelt among us.

Hail Mary…

Pray for us, 0 Holy Mother of God.

That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray:

Pour forth, we beseech thee, 0 Lord, Thy grace into our hearts, that we, to whom the Incarnation of Christ Thy Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Death be brought to the glory of His Resurrection. Through Christ Our Lord Amen.

(Note: we know of several homes where the Angelus is recited. What a beautiful custom to restore in your family).



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