Tag Archives: Pope Francis

13 May: Young Saints.

somers.town. pentecost.jpg

Some readers will remember that I like St Aloysius’ Church near Saint Pancras station in London. This window, with Mary at the centre of the Apostles on Pentecost morning arouses mixed emotions though. It is good to see a clear theology of Mary’s place in the Church, receiving the Holy Spirit with – I wish I could say ‘with everyone else’ – but it is with the Apostles only, not the 120 people who were gathered together. Perhaps the artist felt that the picture was crowded enough already, but where is Mary Magdalene, Johanna, the other women and where is John Mark, Paul’s future assistant that he would call his ‘son’ (Colossians 4:10)? He is usually identified with the boy who ran away naked from the garden on Maundy Thursday night, as well as with Mark the evangelist. It was to his mother’s house that Peter went after the angel sprung him from prison. (Acts 12.12) She was another Mary.

The window is not diverse enough to represent the first Church, though a few minutes looking through the clear glass out into the street would assure any visitor that St Aloysius’ is in the midst of diversity today. But there should be more women and more young people in that window!

Saint Aloysius was a Jesuit novice when he died in Rome aged 23, after catching plague from nursing the victims of an epidemic. Not an inappropriate neighbour for Saint Pancras, who was martyred for his Christian faith at Rome on 14 May 304, at the age of fourteen. John Mark, Aloysius and Pancras, young men who were saints. Worth remembering them, and young women saints like Agnes, Lucy and Therese, as we approach the great Synod of Pope Francis. Today’s young Christians are as capable of witnessing to the Gospel message as their parents, grandparents, distant ancestors, and the clergy. Let’s hear their voices.

Keep them in your prayers!

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6 May 2022, Praying with Pope Francis: young people.

Young People gathered in Poland for World Youth Day, 2016

This Month Pope Francis urges us missionaries to pray for faith-filled young people. The Polish Pope, St John-Paul II, was well-known for his devotion to the Mother of Jesus. The Argentinian Pope spells out the practical virtues that the real-life Mary embodied. May all young people receive and exercise the gift of these virtues for themselves and all around them.

We pray for all young people, called to live life to the fullest; may they see in Mary’s life the way to listen, the depth of discernment, the courage that faith generates, and the dedication to service. AMEN.

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4 May: The English Martyrs of the Reformation

Saint Edmund Campion, whose name Gerard Edward adopted as an alias when he came to Kent on Mission.

Today 4th May we remember all those men and women who were martyred in England between 1535 and 1680. Forty two have been canonised and a further 242 have been declared Blessed but we don’t know the true number of those who died on the scaffold, in prison and those who were tortured for their faith.

We have our own group of martyrs who were hung drawn and quartered in Canterbury. They are known as the Oaten Hill martyrs. They were Blessed Edmund Campion (Fr Gerard Edward), Christopher Buxton, Robert Wilcox and Robert Widmerpool and their execution took place on 1st October 1588.

Today Bishops of England and Wales have specifically asked us all to remember in our prayers those who are Survivors of Abuse. Pope Francis has asked for it to be a worldwide day of prayer within the Catholic Church. It is a very sobering initiative of the Holy Father and it is right and fitting that we should bring Survivors before the Lord in our prayers that they should be touched by the healing grace of God.

Let us pray

Praise to you Father of our Lord Jesus Christ
the source of all consolation and hope.
Be the refuge and guardian of all
who suffer from abuse and violence.
Comfort them and send healing
for their wounds of the body, soul and spirit.
Help us all and make us one with you
in your love for justice
as we deepen our respect for the dignity of every human life.
Giver of peace, make us one in celebrating
your praise, both now and forever.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Canon Father Anthony

Canon Anthony Charlton, Parish Priest St Thomas’ Canterbury.

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14 April, Maundy Thursday: Those who lead must serve

Pope washes feet of 12 prisoners on Holy Thursday

We follow Pope Francis to prison on Maundy Thursday.

In 2018, during the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, Pope Francis washed the feet of twelve inmates in Regina Coeli prison. He told the prisoners that Jesus had washed his disciples’ feet to show that leadership is service: “Those who lead must serve. If so many kings, emperors, heads of state had understood this teaching of Jesus and done this instead of giving orders to be cruel, to kill people, how many wars would not have happened!”

Pope Francis urged the prisoners not to give up hope for there always is the possibility of forgiveness; and even though society discards them, Jesus says: “You are important to me.” And he “takes a risk on each of us.” 

Francis  got down on his knees to wash the prisoners’, among them two Muslims and a Buddhist. He has in the past washed the feet of non-Christians; and the feet of women. 

“I am a sinner but come as Christ’s ambassador,” the Pope told the prisoners. “When I wash your feet, remember that Jesus never abandons you and he never tires of forgiving you.”

At the sign of peace he urged those present to use it as a moment for reconciliation and to think of “those who do not love us” and the people “we would like to take revenge on”.

(CNS photo/Vatican Media) 

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Pray for Peace with Pope Francis and Pax Christi

Here is a prayer of Pope Francis for Peace.

God of Love,
show us our place in this world
as channels of your love
for all the creatures of this earth,
for not one of them is forgotten in your sight.

Enlighten those who have power and money,
that they may love the common good,
advance the weak,
and care for this world in which we live.
The poor and the earth are crying out.

O Lord,
seize us with your power and light,
help us protect all life,
to prepare for a better future, 
for the coming of your Kingdom 
of justice, peace, love and beauty.

Praise be to you! AMEN.

www.paxchristi.org.uk

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Sing for your synod!

General Secretariat for the Synod of Bishops
www.synod.va – media@synod.va
#newsletter n.05 – 02/2022 – Available also in FR – PT – ES – ITIt’s great to see you here again! Our newsletter is more musical than usual. Because if singing is praying twice, this week we went in search of songs and hymns written to enliven the synodical process. What joy and creativity we found! Let’s listen.

Singing Synodality

With her song “Poetas Sociales” the Catholic singer-songwriter Majo Febe, a student of Theology at the Theological Institute of Murcia (Spain), began the publication of a series of songs about synodality.
Listen to her here

“Listen, let us listen” is the title of the hymn that the Antilles Bishops’ Conference shares with us through the website it developed specifically to encourage the synodal journey we are on. The authors are from the Diocese of St. George’s, Grenada.
Let’s listen to them…

The Diocese of Ipiales recorded a song for the synodical journey with musical groups from Colombia to attract young people who do not participate in the life of the Church.
 Listen to the hymn here 

The Synod in the World
The Loyola University of Chicago is inviting the university students of the Americas to participate in a synodal encounter with Pope Francis. The name of the online event on February 24 comes with a challenge: “Building Bridges North-South“.
 For more information…

In the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya, a participatory synod process is taking place through the pastoral action of the Salesian community, the Missionary Sisters of Charles de Foucauld, and the Jesuit Refugee Service. Take a look at their Lumko Method and read some testimonies.
To know more…

The largest parish in the Catholic Archdiocese of Karachi, in the financial center of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, is preparing for a new synod meeting Feb. 24.

Read more… 



Pray for the Synod
In order to support the synodal journey and ask for the Spirit’s assistance, together with the World Network of Prayers of the Pope and UISG, we have set up a website in 5 languages: Church on the Way. Pray for the Synod. You too can send your prayer. See how to do it… 


We need You !
In the near future, we would like to focus on the priests and their contribution in this synodal journey. Share with us the experiences of priests who have allowed themselves to be transformed by listening and who sit with the people of God on the journey of discerning God’s will for the Church.
Copyright  2022 General Secretariat for the Synod of Bishops, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
General Secretariat for the Synod of Bishops
Via della Conciliazione, 34
Vatican City 00120
Vatican City State (Holy See)

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4 February 2022, Praying with Pope Francis: Sisters.

Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa at a farewell Mass as their mission to Zambia comes to an end.

This month Pope Francis invites us to pray for religious sisters and consecrated women

We pray for religious sisters and consecrated women; thanking them for their mission and their courage; may they continue to find new responses to the challenges of our times.

Religious sisters have always found new responses to the challenges of their times, but they have not always been supported as they should have been by clergy or lay people. The sisters shown above were handing over their work to local sisters and lay people; we have seen how lay catholics have taken charge of schools in England and Wales that were founded in grinding poverty in the 19th Century.

Let us join Pope Francis in thanking God – and the sisters – for their often heroic work and pray that the Spirit may lead them by quiet waters or amid th’encircling gloom.

I recommend the Global Sisters Report a free news web site which tells of the work and lives of sisters throughout the world. I understand there may be more wisdom from our own Sister Clare in GSR this year.

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The latest from the Synod Office.




#newsletter n.10 – 12/2021 – Available also in FR – PT – ES – ITShareTweetForwardShare
Special ‘ Advent Season’

Christmas card available now!
The logo is available on the shared drive in various editable formats.

Adeste fideles
The Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life is launching the #IamChurch campaign: 5 videos in which persons with disabilities, from different parts of the world, recount their experience of faith and affirm, “I am Church!”

Starting on December 6, the videos will be available on the YouTube channels of Vatican News and the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life and will be published weekly. Baptism makes each one of us a fully-fledged member of the ecclesial community and gives each one, without exclusion or discrimination, the possibility of exclaiming, “I am Church!” The Church, indeed, is your home! We, all together, are Church because Jesus has chosen to be our friend.

(Pope Francis, Message on the occasion of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities – 3 December 2021)
#WhileWalkingTOGETHERweLearn

From the Archdiocese of Newark (US), a series of recommendations and resources to facilitate the synodal journey of brothers and sisters with disabilities. Thank you, dear friends of Newark!

Document in English – Site available in several languages.Share your story!

COVID-19 & synodality: the Auckland Champions
An example of good practice
In the Diocese of Auckland, the synodal process is taking place in close isolation. More than 200 people have participated in information sessions with zoom to become Synod Champions.
Two young adults made this simple video in a style that speaks to both young people and adults to encourage participation.Are you witnessing or living a particular synodal experience? Do you think you have experienced a good practice and want to share it? Fill in the attached form and send it to media@synod.va.

If your story appears to be original or considered a good practice, we will publish it in our next newsletter and who knows… maybe even in VaticanNews!


Synodal spirituality
We continue our journey to discover the spirituality of the different religious families, associations and ecclesial movements. Today we invite you to discover Ignatian spirituality. 

 The Synod in the world: a new site
We continue to receive from all over the world photos, videos, … showing the great creativity of our communities.
Be inspired by visiting the new site: sharingresources.org

Listening to migrants


We need you!
 We invite you to send materials and good practices for the involvement of migrants in the synodal process. #ListeningToAll #NobodyExcluded


Pray for the Synod
In order to support the synodal journey and ask for the Spirit’s assistance, together with the World Network of Prayers of the Pope and UISG, we have set up a website in 5 languages: Church on the Way. Pray for the Synod. From 2 November, you too can send your prayer. See how to do it… 
Copyright  2021 General Secretariat for the Synod of Bishops, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
General Secretariat for the Synod of Bishops
Via della Conciliazione, 34
Vatican City 00120
Vatican City State (Holy See)

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2 December: Praying with Pope Francis

Pope Francis’s December Intention for Evangelisation: – Catechists

Let us pray for the catechists, 
summoned to announce the Word of God: 
may they be its witnesses, 
with courage and creativity 
and in the power of the Holy Spirit.



World youth day participants, Poland 2016.

Sister Victoire’s congregation (Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of Africa) is by no means the only group of Sisters who minister as catechists, but we celebrate their contribution to the Church this month. Most catechists are not Sisters, Brothers or Priests but laymen and women. I first got involved as a teenager, preparing country children for their first sacraments, and have been involved in other ways over the years.

This is a ministry that suits many young people, such as those in the lower photograph who were attending the World Youth Days in Krakow five years ago. As Ignatius’ articles here and here show, there are different ways of sharing the faith.

So let’s pray for Catechists, especially those teaching the faith to enquirers and children, people hearing the Word for the first time. May they be true witnesses, with courage and creativity and in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Lord, graciously hear us.

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Some pictures from the opening of the Synod process.

General Secretariat for the Synod of Bishops
www.synod.va – media@synod.vaView this email in your browser
#newsletter n.4 – 10/2021 – Available also in FR – PT – ES – ITShareTweet ForwardShare

To all of you who participated, in presence or from a distance, in the events of the Opening of the Synodal Process, the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops wishes a joyful and festive opening of this synodal time in your dioceses.
To the continental, national and diocesan contact persons, we wish strength for you work and assure you the support of our prayers.
Send us your videos, photos, … of the opening to at media@synod.va or via whatsapp at +39 351 9348474.
And don’t forget to use the following tags

#synod #listeningchurch #walkingtogether
 
To the members of the commissions of the General Secretariat goes our heartfelt thanks for your hard work.
Although the path is long and hidden, it will also be full of beautiful surprises.
Thank you for your service!To remember together ….

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