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Mass Is For The Eucharist Not Pictures – Pope Francis

Mass Is For The Eucharist Not Pictures – Pope Francis

Mass is for the Eucharist not Pictures…Pope Francis

Wednesday a fiery Pope Francis chastised those who spend Mass talking to others, looking at their phone or even taking pictures during papal liturgies, saying these are distractions that take focus away from the “heart of the Church,” which is the Eucharist.

“The Mass is not a show: it is to go to meet the passion and resurrection of the Lord,” the Pope said Nov. 8. “The Lord is here with us, present. Many times we go there, we look at things and chat among ourselves while the priest celebrates the Eucharist… But it is the Lord!”

In particular, Francis condemned the use of cell phones to take photos at papal Masses. At one point during the Mass the priest says, “we lift up our hearts,” he said. “He does not say, ‘We lift up our phones to take photographs!’”

“It’s a bad thing! And I tell you that it gives me so much sadness when I celebrate here in the Piazza or Basilica and I see so many raised cellphones, not just of the faithful, even of some priests and even bishops.”

“But think: when you go to Mass, the Lord is there! And you’re distracted. (But) it is the Lord!”

During the general audience, Pope Francis said the Eucharist would be the new focus of his weekly catechesis for the year, because “it is fundamental for us Christians to understand well the value and meaning of the Holy Mass to live more and more fully our relationship with God.”

In the Eucharist we rediscover, through our senses, what is essential, he said. Just as the Apostle Thomas asked to see and touch the wounds of Jesus after his resurrection, we need the same thing: “to see him and touch him to be able to recognize him.”

In this way, the Sacraments meet this very “human need” of ours, he said. And in the Eucharist, in particular, we find a privileged way to meet God and his love.

The Second Vatican Council was inspired by the desire to help Christians understand the beauty of the encounter in the Eucharist even better, he continued. This is why “it was necessary first to implement, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, an adequate renewal of the liturgy.”

A central theme emphasized at Vatican II was the liturgical formation of the faithful, which Francis said is also the aim of the series of catechesis he began today: to help people “grow in the knowledge of this great gift God has given us in the Eucharist.”

As a side note, Francis asked if people had noticed the chaotic way children make the sign of cross at Mass, moving their hand all over their chest, and asked people to teach children to make the sign of the cross well.

“We need to teach children to do the sign of the cross well,” he said, noting that this is how Mass begins, because just as Mass begins this way, “so life begins, so the day begins.”

Concluding his reflection on the Mass and the Eucharist, Pope Francis said that he hopes that through these brief weekly lessons everyone will rediscover the beauty “hidden in the Eucharistic celebration, and which, when revealed, gives a full meaning to the life of everyone.”

Pope Francis Bans Cigarettes Sales In Vatican

Pope Francis Bans Cigarettes Sales In Vatican

Pope Francis has outlawed the sale of cigarettes at the Vatican in a bid to lead by example on healthy living. “The Holy Father has decided that the Vatican will cease to sell cigarettes to employees as of 2018,” the Vatican said in a statement on Thursday.
The reason is very simple: the Holy See cannot contribute to an activity that clearly damages the health of people,” it said, adding that smoking claims more than seven million lives every year, according to the World Health Organization. “Although the cigarettes sold to employees and pensioners in the Vatican at a reduced price are a source of revenue for the Holy See, no profit can be legitimate if it puts lives at risk,” it added. Francis, who has only one lung, does not smoke. He has let the locals keep their other guilty pleasure, tax-free alcohol. 
The cigarettes and booze are sold in a luxury duty-free shop, opened in 2003 in what was once the Vatican’s magnificent railway station but is now home to everything from designer handbags and shoes to flat-screen televisions. Only those with a pass — Vatican employees or pensioners — can shop there, and many pick up goods, food and even fuel inside the city for Italian friends on the other side of the tiny state’s imposing walls.

Do Not Abandon Me – Prayer Of A Catholic On Death Row For Blasphemy

Do Not Abandon Me – Prayer Of A Catholic On Death Row For Blasphemy


Do not abandon me in the day of trouble, do not deprive me of your presence.

On June 14, 2009, Asia Bibi was thrown into jail. A year later she was sentenced to death for blasphemy, and since 2013, after two transfers, she has been languishing in one of the three windowless cells on death row in the southern province of Multan in the Punjab Penitentiary. A year after the Supreme Court of Pakistan postponed her appeal amid death threats by 150 muftis (Muslim legal experts) against anyone who would assist “blasphemers,” the case has not progressed by one iota. On August 30, Asia Bibi had spent 3,000 days in prison.

This is the prayer she composed last year on the occasion of the Easter celebrations, and which accompanies her in her detention:

Resurrected Lord, allow your daughter Asia to rise again with you. Break my chains, make my heart free and go beyond these bars, and accompany my soul so that it is close to those who are dear to me, and that it remains always near you.

Do not abandon me in the day of trouble, do not deprive me of your presence. You who have suffered torture and the cross, alleviate my suffering. Hold me near you, Lord Jesus.

On the day of your resurrection, Jesus, I want to pray for my enemies, for those who hurt me. I pray for them and I beg you to forgive them for the harm they have done me.

I ask you, Lord, to remove all obstacles so that I may obtain the blessing of freedom. I ask you to protect me and protect my family.

Source: aleteia.org

SO SAD: French Court Orders Removal of Cross from Statue of John Paul II

SO SAD: French Court Orders Removal of Cross from Statue of John Paul II

Nearly two weeks after the celebration of his feast day, a French court has ordered the removal of a cross from a statue of Pope Saint John Paul II.

The statue was originally gifted to the mayor of Ploërmel, a city part of the Brittany region of northwestern France. The statue stands 25 feet tall, depicting John Paul II in prayer underneath an arch adorned with a cross on top.

The Conseil d’Etat, French for Council of State, is the head administrative court in France. After a decade long legal battle, they ruled the statue must be removed from public land as it violates a law from 1905 that imposes a strict separation of Church and state. They ruled the statue may remain, however the city of Ploërmel has six months to remove the cross from the top of the arch.

After learning of the ruling, Poland’s prime minister, Beata Szydło offered to relocate the statue in its entirety to “save it from censorship.” She also had to say that:

“Our great Pole, a great European, is a symbol of a Christian, united Europe. The dictates of political correctness and secularization of the state promote values which are alien to our culture, which leads to terrorizing Europeans in their everyday life”

The mayor of Ploërmel opposes the dismantling of the statue and said that “I have no desire to rekindle a war of religion.” He is open to the possibility of selling the land to a private investor to circumvent the ruling.

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