Sunday, December 31, 2017

Gain a Plenary Indulgence on New Year's Eve - #PlenaryIndulgence

Plenary Indulgences for 31 December 
The Enchiridion Indulgentiarum 26 indicates that we can gain plenary indulgences on the 31 December. (Video Below)
A plenary indulgence is granted to the Christian faithful who, recite or sing the Te Deum
Under the usual conditions, a plenary indulgence can be gained:
1. Sacramental confession within eight days
2. A prescribed good work (for Dec. 31 the recital of the Te Deum)
3. Sacramental Holy Communion within eight days.
4. Prayers for the intentions of the Roman Pope (usually 1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary and 1 Glory Be)
5. Detestation of venial sin 

TE DEUM PRAYER in Latin and English
Te Deum laudamus: te Dominum confitemur.O God, we praise Thee: we acknowledge Thee to be the Lord.
Te aeternum Patrem omnis terra veneratur.Everlasting Father, all the earth doth worship Thee.
Tibi omnes Angeli; tibi Caeli et universae Potestates;To Thee all the Angels, the Heavens and all the Powers,
Tibi Cherubim et Seraphim incessabili voce proclamant:all the Cherubim and Seraphim, unceasingly proclaim:
Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus, Dominus Deus Sabaoth.Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts!
Pleni sunt caeli et terra maiestatis gloriae tuae.Heaven and earth are full of the Majesty of Thy glory.
Te gloriosus Apostolorum chorus,The glorious choir of the Apostles,
Te Prophetarum laudabilis numerus,the wonderful company of Prophets,
Te Martyrum candidatus laudat exercitus.the white-robed army of Martyrs, praise Thee.
Te per orbem terrarum sancta confitetur Ecclesia,Holy Church throughout the world doth acknowledge Thee:
Patrem immensae maiestatis:the Father of infinite Majesty;
Venerandum tuum verum et unicum Filium;Thy adorable, true and only Son;
Sanctum quoque Paraclitum Spiritum.and the Holy Spirit, the Comforter.
Tu Rex gloriae, Christe.O Christ, Thou art the King of glory!
Tu Patris sempiternus es Filius.Thou art the everlasting Son of the Father.
Tu ad liberandum suscepturus hominem, non horruisti Virginis uterum.Thou, having taken it upon Thyself to deliver man, didst not disdain the Virgin's womb.
Tu, devicto mortis aculeo, aperuisti credentibus regna caelorum.Thou overcame the sting of death and hast opened to believers the Kingdom of Heaven.
Tu ad dexteram Dei sedes, in gloria Patris.Thou sitest at the right hand of God, in the glory of the Father.
Iudex crederis esse venturus.We believe that Thou shalt come to be our Judge.
Te ergo quaesumus, tuis famulis subveni: quos pretioso sanguine redemisti.We beseech Thee, therefore, to help Thy servants whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy Precious Blood.
Aeterna fac cum sanctis tuis in gloria numerari.Make them to be numbered with Thy Saints in everlasting glory.
V. Salvum fac populum tuum, Domine, et benedic hereditati tuae.V. Save Thy people, O Lord, and bless Thine inheritance!
R. Et rege eos, et extolle illos usque in aeternum.R. Govern them, and raise them up forever.
V. Per singulos dies benedicimus te.V. Every day we thank Thee.
R. Et laudamus nomen tuum in saeculum, et in saeculum saeculi.R. And we praise Thy Name forever, yea, forever and ever.
V. Dignare, Domine, die isto sine peccato nos custodire.V. O Lord, deign to keep us from sin this day.
R. Miserere nostri, Domine, miserere nostri.R. Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us.
V. Fiat misericordia tua, Domine, super nos, quemadmodum speravimus in te.V. Let Thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, for we have hoped in Thee.
R. In te, Domine, speravi: non confundar in aeternum.R. O Lord, in Thee I have hoped; let me never be put to shame.


#PopeFrancis "...reflect on..Mary, Joseph and Jesus, while they grow together as a family in mutual love and trust in God."



FULL TEXT Angelus of Pope Francis on Dec. 31, 2017 from Vatican News with FULL Video: 
Dear brothers and sisters, good morning!
On this first Sunday after Christmas, we celebrate the Holy Family of Nazareth, and the Gospel invites us to reflect on the experience lived by Mary, Joseph and Jesus, while they grow together as a family in mutual love and trust in God. Trust is an expression of the ritual performed by Mary and Joseph with the offering of her son Jesus to God: "They brought the child to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord" (Lk 2:22), as required by the Law of Moses. The parents of Jesus go to the temple to certify that the child belongs to God and that they are the guardians of his life and not the owners.
This gesture emphasizes that only God is the Lord of individual and family history; everything comes to us from Him. Every family is called to recognize this primacy, guarding and educating children to be open to God who is the very source of life. From here comes the secret of inner youth, paradoxically witnessed in the Gospel by an elderly couple, Simeon and Anna. The old Simeon, in particular, inspired by the Holy Spirit says about the child Jesus: "He is destined for the fall and for the rising of many in Israel and as a sign of contradiction [...] so that the secret thoughts of many may be laid bare.”
These prophetic words reveal that Jesus came to bring down the false images that we make of God and of ourselves; to "contradict" the worldly certainties on which we claim to support ourselves; to make us "rise up" to an authentic human and Christian journey based on the values ​​of the Gospel. There is no family situation that is precluded on this new path of rebirth and resurrection. Whenever families, even those wounded and marked by frailty, failure and difficulty, return to the source of Christian experience, new paths and unimagined possibilities open up.
Today's Gospel story tells us that Mary and Joseph, "when they had done everything the law of the Lord required, they returned to Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. The child grew to maturity and he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him.” A great joy of the family is the growth of children. They are destined to mature and become strong, to acquire wisdom and to receive the grace of God, just as happened to Jesus. He is truly one of us: the Son of God becomes a child, He agrees to grow in maturity and strength, He is filled with wisdom and the grace of God is upon him. Mary and Joseph experience the joy of seeing all this in their son; and this is the mission to which the family is called: to create the best conditions that will allow for the harmonious and full growth of children, so that they can live a life that is good, worthy of God, and constructive for the world.
This is the wish I have for all families, a wish I accompany with an invocation to Mary, Queen of the Family.

Feast of the Holy Family - Novena to the #HolyFamily and Prayers for Families to SHARE

The feast of the Holy Family, celebrated on the first Sunday after Christmas. The feast day was formally instituted in 1921 under Pope Benedict XV. Originally celebrated on the Sunday after Epiphany (January 6), the Feast of the Holy Family was moved to the Sunday after Christmas in 1969. 
 Feast of the Holy Family -
Novena - 
Most loving Jesus, Who by Thy sublime and beautiful virtues of humility, obedience, poverty, modesty, charity, patience and gentleness, and by the example of Thy domestic life didst bless with peace and happiness the family Thou didst choose on earth, in Thy clemency look down upon this household, humbly prostrate before Thee and imploring Thy mercy. Remember that this family belongs to Thee; for to Thee we have in a special way dedicated and devoted ourselves. Look upon us in Thy loving kindness; preserve us from danger; give us help in time of need, and grant us the grace to persevere to the end in the imitation of Thy Holy Family; that having revered Thee and loved Thee faithfully on earth, we may bless and praise Thee eternally in heaven. 


O Mary, most sweet Mother, to thy intercession we have recourse, knowing that thy Divine Son will hear thy prayers. 

And do thou, O glorious Patriarch, St. Joseph, assist us by thy powerful mediation, and offer, by the hands of Mary, our prayers to Jesus. Amen.

Here mention your petitions for this novena..........

1 Our Father ...1 Hail Mary... 1 GloryBe each day for 9 days.

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PRAYER TO THE HOLY FAMILY

Lord Jesus Christ, who, being made subject to Mary and Joseph, didst consecrate domestic life by Thine ineffable virtues; grant that we, with the assistance of both,
may be taught by the example of Thy holy Family and may attain to its everlasting fellowship. Who livest and reignest, world without end. Amen.

(Indulgence, 5 years each time)

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A Prayer to The Holy Family, for One’s Children

O Jesus, only-begotten Son of the Eternal Father, well-beloved Son of the Blessed Virgin and foster Child of St. Joseph, we most fervently implore Thee, through Mary Thine ever-blessed Mother and St. Joseph Thy foster father, take our children under Thy special charge and enclose them in the love of Thy Sacred Heart. They are the children of Thy Father in Heaven, created after His own image; they are Thy possession, for Thou hast purchased them with Thy Precious Blood; they are temples of the Holy Ghost, who sanctified them in Baptism and implanted in their hearts the virtues of faith, hope and charity. 

O most loving Jesus, rule and guide them, that they may live according to the holy Catholic Faith, that they may not waver in their confidence in Thee and that they may ever remain faithful to Thy love. 

O Mary, Blessed Mother of Jesus, grant to our children a place in thy pure maternal heart! Spread over them thy protecting mantle when danger threatens their innocence;
keep them firm when they are about to stray from the path of virtue; and should they have the misfortune of falling into mortal sin, oh, then raise them up again, reconcile them with thy Divine Son and restore them to Sanctifying Grace.

And thou, O holy foster father St. Joseph, do not abandon our children! Protect them from the assaults of the wicked enemy and deliver them from all dangers of soul and body.

O dear parents of the holy Child Jesus! Intercede for us parents also, that we may bring up our children in the love and fear of God and one day attain with them the Beatific Vision. Amen.

Prayers Source: This prayer is taken from Prayer Book for Religious, compiled by Fr. F. X. Lasance, S.J. (Benziger Brothers, 1904) 

#BreakingNews Boko Haram Kills over 50 people in 3 separate Attacks in Nigeria - Please Pray

All Africa report: Scores of civilians and Boko Haram insurgents were reportedly killed yesterday during different attacks in Borno and Yobe states.
Witnesses said the first attack was an ambush on firewood mongers in villages around Mafa, the first local government area outskirts of Maiduguri along Dikwa- Gamboru-Ngala-Cameroon Republic road.
The second attack was reportedly launched at villages around Kanamma in northern fringes of Yobe State, the first place where Boko Haram, then known as Nigerian Taliban, settled around 2002.
The third siege was along Maiduguri- Damboa road in southern part of Borno.
Different sources said dozens of people were allegedly killed but this could not be independently verified.
In the attack in Mafa, sources said no fewer than 50 people were killed.
A vigilante Umara Modu said many Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from Muna camp in the outskirts of Maiduguri, as well as others from the surrounding villages, including Maiwa near Mafa LGA, were killed around 2.30 pm Saturday.
“Different Boko Haram gangs ambushed different locations. More than 50 people, mostly those chopping firewood which they normally sell to support their families, were killed,” he said.
“They carted away many trucks belonging to the firewood mongers and set ablaze the rickety ones,” he added.
Usman Jidda, a driver who lives near Muna garage in Maiduguri corroborated. “It was a targeted attack by the terrorists... Based on the information I got, they killed more than 40 people in the bushes,” he said.
It was also gathered that the insurgents attacked Kanamma villages around 5:45pm yesterday, but many of them met their waterloo as they were killed by an Air Force fighter jet which mobilized to the site after a distress call.
“The BH fighters did not succeed in Kanamma, they were repelled,” said Musa Mohammed, a resident of Geidam, which is not far from Kanamma.
“The terrorists actually attacked Kam village near Kanamma where they sometime ago forcefully recruited many youths. I think they went back to either recruit others but were not successful.
“The village is at a border between Nigeria and Niger, and it is the Musab Albarnawi faction of the sect that is terrorising people there
“It is pleasing that Air Force mobilized immediately. Many of the terrorists were killed by the fighter jet while fleeing in the desert,” he said.
A resident in the town, Musaah Baakura, revealed that prior to the Kanamma attack villagers called and warned their relatives of the possibility.
“They said that the insurgents had assembled in a bush, with weapons, trying to hit a target. Many people fled for their lives, some traveled out, some to neighbouring villages while others remained indoors,” he said.
In yet another attack, the insurgents reportedly laid ambush on vehicles conveying people and foodstuff along Maiduguri- Damboa road.
“Those ones were desperately looking for food and they succeeded in getting plenty,” a security source, who does not want to be quoted, said. By Hamza Idris & Hamisu Kabir Matazu,
SOURCE: AllAfrica.com and https://www.dailytrust.com.ng/scores-killed-in-boko-haram-attacks-in-borno-yobe.html

Wow Opera Company Sings Handel's "Hallelujah" Chorus in Macy's Mall in Philadelphia - SHARE

Shoppers at Macy’s surprise rendition of Handel’s Hallelujah chorus in Philadelphia.  When the 650 choristers, accompanied by the Wanamaker organ -- the largest organ in the world .
Video has been viewed millions of times.  “We are all drawn a little bit closer to heaven when we hear this played and sung,” said one listener.
 “The Church at one time used to be in the center of the marketplace. The Church was central to the culture with various forms of art. So as you look at what took place at Macy’s, it is not a far cry from how the Church used to be accepted.”
A shopper noted: “There is a certain lack of beauty in much of today’s music, as well as a lack of dignity. By the way, have you noticed how little of today’s music is beautiful? It’s cool, funky, raw, radical, jazzy, upbeat -- but not beautiful.”

A tradition originated when the Messiah premiered in London in the presence of King George II.  When the first chords of the chorus began, the king rose and remained standing.

Royal protocol has it that whenever a monarch stands, those in his or her presence should also stand as a sign of respect.  Therefore, on this occasion, both the audience and the orchestra stood with the king; this continues today.
SHARE this Beautiful piece of Music to Inspire all!

Free New Year's #Recipe by Maria Von Trapp of the Sound of Music

Sylvester Punch

NEW YEAR'S EVE PUNCH BY MARIA VON TRAPP 
Sylvester Punch
(In Austria the last day of the year is dedicated to the Holy Pope, St. Sylvester, who baptized Constantine the Great, thereby bringing about the dawning not only of the New Year but of a new era; for this reason, the night before the New Year is called "Sylvesterabend" (Eve of St. Sylvester).
Ingredients:
Red burgundy (count one bottle for six people)
Equal amount of hot tea
12 cloves
rind of 1 lemon
2 tbsp. sugar to each bottle of wine
2 cinnamon sticks to each bottle of wine

Pour the liquid into an enamel pot, add the cloves, the thinly pared rind 
of 1 lemon, the sugar, and the cinnamon. Heat over a low flame but do not 
allow to boil. At the last moment add the tea. Serve hot.

If there are many children and very young people, it is good to know 
different fruit punch combinations. Here is a basic recipe, with 
variations:


1/2 cup lemon juice           grated rind of 1 lemon
1 cup orange juice            1 qt. water
grated rind of 1/2 orange     1 cup sugar

Cook sugar and water for five minutes. Cool. Add juices and the grated 
rind and any of the following combinations:

(1) 1 cup grated pineapple, 1 qt. ginger ale.

(2) 1 qt. strained, sweetened strawberry juice, 1 qt. raspberry juice, 2 
qts. ginger ale.

(3) 1 glass currant jelly dissolved in 1 cup hot water. Cook, chill, and 
add 1/4 cup mint, finely minced.

(4) 1 qt. cider, 1 qt. grape juice, 1 qt. soda water.

It is great fun to try out new variations every year. One starts with 
lemonade or orangeade and soon the children will go on to pineapple-ade, 
raspberry-ade....In our family we have something called "Hedwig-ade" 
because it is Hedwig's own secret.

Source: Maria Augusta Trapp
Music Arranged by Franz Wasner
Illustrations by Rosemary Trapp and Nikolaus E. Wolff
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS CATALOG CARD NO. M[55]-1016
Harcourt, Brace & Co., New York.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Sunday Mass Online : Feast of the Holy Family Jesus, Mary and Joseph : Sun. December 31, 2017 - #Eucharist


The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph
Lectionary: 17


Reading 1SIR 3:2-6, 12-14

God sets a father in honor over his children;
a mother's authority he confirms over her sons.
Whoever honors his father atones for sins,
and preserves himself from them.
When he prays, he is heard;
he stores up riches who reveres his mother.
Whoever honors his father is gladdened by children,
and, when he prays, is heard.
Whoever reveres his father will live a long life;
he who obeys his father brings comfort to his mother.

My son, take care of your father when he is old;
grieve him not as long as he lives.
Even if his mind fail, be considerate of him;
revile him not all the days of his life;
kindness to a father will not be forgotten,
firmly planted against the debt of your sins
—a house raised in justice to you.

OrGN 15:1-6; 21:1-3

The word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying:
"Fear not, Abram!
I am your shield;
I will make your reward very great."
But Abram said,
"O Lord GOD, what good will your gifts be,
if I keep on being childless
and have as my heir the steward of my house, Eliezer?"
Abram continued,
"See, you have given me no offspring,
and so one of my servants will be my heir."
Then the word of the LORD came to him:
"No, that one shall not be your heir;
your own issue shall be your heir."
The Lord took Abram outside and said,
"Look up at the sky and count the stars, if you can.
Just so," he added, "shall your descendants be."
Abram put his faith in the LORD,
who credited it to him as an act of righteousness.

The LORD took note of Sarah as he had said he would;
he did for her as he had promised.
Sarah became pregnant and bore Abraham a son in his old age,
at the set time that God had stated.
Abraham gave the name Isaac to this son of his
whom Sarah bore him.

Responsorial PsalmPS 128:1-2, 3, 4-5

R. (cf. 1) Blessed are those who fear the Lord and walk in his ways.
Blessed is everyone who fears the LORD,
who walks in his ways!
For you shall eat the fruit of your handiwork;
blessed shall you be, and favored.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord and walk in his ways.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
in the recesses of your home;
your children like olive plants
around your table.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord and walk in his ways.
Behold, thus is the man blessed
who fears the LORD.
The LORD bless you from Zion:
may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
all the days of your life.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord and walk in his ways.

OrPS 105:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 8-9

R. (7a , 8a) The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
Give thanks to the LORD, invoke his name;
make known among the nations his deeds.
Sing to him, sing his praise,
proclaim all his wondrous deeds.
R. The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
Glory in his holy name;
rejoice, O hearts that seek the LORD!
Look to the LORD in his strength;
constantly seek his face.
R. The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
You descendants of Abraham, his servants,
sons of Jacob, his chosen ones!
He, the LORD, is our God;
throughout the earth his judgments prevail.
R. The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.
He remembers forever his covenant
which he made binding for a thousand generations
which he entered into with Abraham
and by his oath to Isaac.
R. The Lord remembers his covenant for ever.

Reading 2COL 3:12-21

Brothers and sisters:
Put on, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved,
heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience,
bearing with one another and forgiving one another,
if one has a grievance against another;
as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do.
And over all these put on love,
that is, the bond of perfection.
And let the peace of Christ control your hearts,
the peace into which you were also called in one body.
And be thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly,
as in all wisdom you teach and admonish one another,
singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs
with gratitude in your hearts to God.
And whatever you do, in word or in deed,
do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Wives, be subordinate to your husbands,
as is proper in the Lord.
Husbands, love your wives,
and avoid any bitterness toward them.
Children, obey your parents in everything,
for this is pleasing to the Lord.
Fathers, do not provoke your children,
so they may not become discouraged.

OrCOL 3:12-17

Brothers and sisters:
Put on, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved,
heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience,
bearing with one another and forgiving one another,
if one has a grievance against another;
as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do.
And over all these put on love,
that is, the bond of perfection.
And let the peace of Christ control your hearts,
the peace into which you were also called in one body.
And be thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly,
as in all wisdom you teach and admonish one another,
singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs
with gratitude in your hearts to God.
And whatever you do, in word or in deed,
do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God the Father through him.

OrHEB 11:8, 11-12, 17-19

Brothers and sisters:
By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place
that he was to receive as an inheritance;
he went out, not knowing where he was to go.
By faith he received power to generate,
even though he was past the normal age
—and Sarah herself was sterile—
for he thought that the one who had made the promise was trustworthy.
So it was that there came forth from one man,
himself as good as dead,
descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky
and as countless as the sands on the seashore.

By faith Abraham, when put to the test, offered up Isaac,
and he who had received the promises was ready to offer
his only son,
of whom it was said,
"Through Isaac descendants shall bear your name."
He reasoned that God was able to raise even from the dead,
and he received Isaac back as a symbol.

AlleluiaCOL 3:15A, 16A

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Let the peace of Christ control your hearts;
let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

OrHEB 1:1-2

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets;
in these last days, he has spoken to us through the Son.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelLK 2:22-40

When the days were completed for their purification
according to the law of Moses,
They took him up to Jerusalem
to present him to the Lord,
just as it is written in the law of the Lord,
Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord, 
and to offer the sacrifice of
a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons, 
in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord.

Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon.
This man was righteous and devout,
awaiting the consolation of Israel,
and the Holy Spirit was upon him.
It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit
that he should not see death
before he had seen the Christ of the Lord.
He came in the Spirit into the temple;
and when the parents brought in the child Jesus
to perform the custom of the law in regard to him,
He took him into his arms and blessed God, saying:
"Now, Master, you may let your servant go
in peace, according to your word,
for my eyes have seen your salvation,
which you prepared in sight of all the peoples,
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and glory for your people Israel."
The child's father and mother were amazed at what was said about him;
and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother,
"Behold, this child is destined
for the fall and rise of many in Israel,
and to be a sign that will be contradicted
—and you yourself a sword will pierce—
so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."
There was also a prophetess, Anna,
the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.
She was advanced in years,
having lived seven years with her husband after her marriage,
and then as a widow until she was eighty-four.
She never left the temple,
but worshiped night and day with fasting and prayer.
And coming forward at that very time,
she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child
to all who were awaiting the redemption of Jerusalem.

When they had fulfilled all the prescriptions
of the law of the Lord,
they returned to Galilee,
to their own town of Nazareth.
The child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom;
and the favor of God was upon him.

OrLK 2:22, 39-40

When the days were completed for their purification
according to the law of Moses,
they took him up to Jerusalem
to present him to the Lord.

When they had fulfilled all the prescriptions
of the law of the Lord,
they returned to Galilee,
to their own town of Nazareth.
The child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom;
and the favor of God was upon him.

Saint December 31 : St. Sylvester : #Pope

Feast Day:
December 31
Died:
31 December 335 at Rome, Italy
Patron of:
Feroleto Antico, Italy
Saint Sylvester I, also spelled Silvester (born , Rome [Italy]—died 335, Rome; Western feast day December 31, Eastern feast day January 2), pope from 314 to 335, whose long pontificate saw the beginnings of the Christian Roman Empire. A presbyter when elected to succeed Pope St. Miltiades (Melchiades), Sylvester was consecrated on Jan. 31, 314. The most important event of his reign was the Council of Nicaea (May 325), which condemned the Alexandrian Christian priest Arius, founder of Arianism, a heretical doctrine teaching that the Son was neither equal with God the Father nor eternal. While the Roman emperor Constantine I the Great favoured Christianity and was a major controller of its ecclesiastical affairs, neither he nor his immediate successors gave any official recognition to papal primacy over the church. Thus, it was a rare and significant exception when Sylvester was accorded a preeminent role in the Arian crisis. Although invited, he did not attend the Council of Nicaea personally but was represented by two legates, who were treated with great honour and respect yet did not preside at the debates. According to subsequent legend, Sylvester converted and baptized Constantine, who was the first Roman emperor to become a Christian, and miraculously cured him of leprosy, for which the emperor allegedly gave him the Donatio Constantini (Donation of Constantine), a grant of spiritual supremacy over the Eastern patriarchates and over all matters of faith and worship as well as temporal dominion over Rome and the entire Western world. The Donation is now universally admitted to be an 8th-century forgery, but it was important in the development of the medieval theory of church and state. Sylvester is believed to have built at the Cemetery of St. Priscilla on the Via Salaria a church, where he was buried. His relics were transferred in 762 by Pope St. Paul I to the Church of San Silvestro in Capite, now the national church of English Catholics in Rome. Text source Britannica

#PopeFrancis Special message to thousands of Taizé youth “promote a culture of mercy based on the rediscovery of encounter with others"

Pope Francis has sent a message to young people from across Europe who are attending the annual Taizé Community Meeting for Young Adults taking place in Basel. He focussed on the need to promote a culture of encounter and to pursue the path of Christian unity.
By Linda Bordoni
Pope Francis has sent a message of blessing and encouragement to the thousands of young people gathered in the Swiss city of Basel for the Taizé Community’s annual European Meeting of Young Adults. In the message, signed by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Pope invites participants to spread the joy of the gospel and to stay connected to the Lord by praying and listening to his Word so that he may help them develop their talents in order to promote a culture of encounter.
The Pope also recalled the marking, in 2017, of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and invited the young people to continue to be enriched by the diversity of the gifts given to all disciples of Christ and to show the world that the Gospel unites all Christians beyond the wounds of their divisions.      
Please find below the working translation of the Pope’s message:
Dear young people,
You have come from all over Europe to Basel which is at the crossroads of Switzerland, France and Germany, to participate in the 40th European Meeting organized and animated by the Community of Taizé.
Theme of Meeting
You are driven by the desire to deepen, together, the true sources of joy. And ‘joy’ is the theme that will guide your reflections and enlighten your prayer.
In this perspective, Pope Francis wants to assure you of his great spiritual closeness. Indeed, as he wrote in the Apostolic Exhortation ‘Evangelii Gaudium’:  “The joy of the gospel fills the hearts and lives of those who meet Jesus. Those who let themselves be saved by him are free from sin, sadness, inner emptiness, isolation. With Jesus Christ joy is born and reborn forever”.
The Holy Father is delighted to know that you have chosen to participate in this meeting to welcome and deepen the message of Jesus which is a source of joy for all those who open their hearts to him. And he thanks you for responding to the call of the Lord who brings you together in the joy of his love.
Culture of mercy
The Pope encourages you to live in this joy that comes from your friendship with Jesus that never closes us to others or to the suffering of this world. And he invites you to stay connected with the Lord, by praying and listening to his Word, so that he may help you develop your talents in order to “promote a culture of mercy based on the rediscovery of encounter with others, a culture in which no one looks at another with indifference or turns away from the suffering of our brothers and sisters.”(Apostolic Letter Misericordia et misera, n.20).
Culture of encounter
The 500th anniversary of the Reformation was marked during the course of the just-ended year, and the Pope asks the Holy Spirit to help you, young Protestants, Catholics and Orthodox, to rejoice and to enrich each other with the diversity of the gifts given to all disciples of Christ, and to show that the joy of the Gospel unites us beyond the wounds of our divisions. He also encourages you not to be afraid to walk the paths of brotherhood so that your meeting in Basel will make visible the joyful communion that springs from the source of the overflowing heart of the Lord.
By entrusting yourselves to the Lord, so that you can sing with the Virgin Mary the marvels of his love which is the source of joy, the Holy Father bestows his heartfelt blessing upon you, young people participating in this meeting, upon  the Brothers of Taizé as well as upon all those in Switzerland, France and Germany who welcome you.
The Taizè Community
The Taizé Community is an ecumenical Christian monastic order founded in 1940 by Brother Roger Schutz, a Reformed Protestant, who wrote the guidelines for the community’s life. The community has become one of the world's most important sites of Christian  pilgrimage, with a focus on youth. Owing to the founder's commitment, since its inception the community has evolved into an important site for Catholic-Lutheran ecumenism. Brother Alois succeeded as prior after his predecessor's death in 2005.

Powerful Performance of O Holy Night with Images of the Nativity by #JoshGroban goes #Viral - SHARE


An amazing performance of  O Holy Night - by Josh Groban - Set to scenes from The Nativity Story...SHARE this beautiful tribute to Christ's Birth!

Today's Mass Readings and Video : Sat. December 30, 2017 #Eucharist


The Sixth Day in the Octave of Christmas
Lectionary: 203


Reading 11 JN 2:12-17

I am writing to you, children,
because your sins have been forgiven for his name's sake.

I am writing to you, fathers,
because you know him who is from the beginning.

I am writing to you, young men,
because you have conquered the Evil One.

I write to you, children,
because you know the Father.

I write to you, fathers,
because you know him who is from the beginning.

I write to you, young men,
because you are strong and the word of God remains in you,
and you have conquered the Evil One.

Do not love the world or the things of the world.
If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
For all that is in the world,
sensual lust, enticement for the eyes, and a pretentious life,
is not from the Father but is from the world.
Yet the world and its enticement are passing away.
But whoever does the will of God remains forever.

Responsorial PsalmPS 96:7-8A, 8B-9, 10

R. (11a) Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
Give to the LORD, you families of nations,
give to the LORD glory and praise;
give to the LORD the glory due his name!
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
Bring gifts, and enter his courts;
worship the LORD in holy attire.
Tremble before him, all the earth.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
Say among the nations: The LORD is king.
He has made the world firm, not to be moved;
he governs the peoples with equity.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!

Alleluia

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
A holy day has dawned upon us.
Come, you nations, and adore the Lord.
Today a great light has come upon the earth.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelLK 2:36-40

There was a prophetess, Anna,
the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.
She was advanced in years,
having lived seven years with her husband after her marriage,
and then as a widow until she was eighty-four.
She never left the temple,
but worshiped night and day with fasting and prayer.
And coming forward at that very time,
she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child
to all who were awaiting the redemption of Jerusalem.

When they had fulfilled all the prescriptions
of the law of the Lord,
they returned to Galilee,
to their own town of Nazareth.
The child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom;
and the favor of God was upon him.