Vespers at St. Pat's: What Did Pope Francis Really Talk About?

09/24/2015 Comment
On Thursday evening a capacity crowd of nearly 25,000 people filled the newly restored interior of Saint Patrick's Cathedral in New York, not for a holy day Mass or even for an ordinary daily Mass, but for a prayer that — as cathedral rector Msgr. Robert Ritchie emphasized in his introductory remarks — countless clergy, religious and even laity pray in small groups or alone several times a day every day of the year: the Liturgy of the Hours, specifically Evening Prayer, or Vespers. 
It was, of course, Pope Francis, coming straight from Washington, DC via JFK Airport for his first-ever appearance in New York, that brought the crowds there. The trappings were far from ordinary: long...READ MORE

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Pro-Life Leaders Gather at World Meeting of Families

Father Pavone: ‘The Family Cannot Be Fully Alive Unless All Its Members Are Protected’

09/24/2015 Comments (2)
Antoine Mekary/Aleteia via Jeff Bruno

Baby at World Meeting of Families

– Antoine Mekary/Aleteia via Jeff Bruno

Pro-life leaders gathered at the Pennsylvania Convention Center during the World Meeting of Families to discuss the current landscape in the fight to protect the unborn. EWTN host Teresa Tomeo acted as master of ceremonies for the Pro-Life International Symposium, which took place before a standing-room-only crowd of pro-life activists in the Terrace Ballroom on Wenesday evening.

The symposium was organized by Father Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, whose charismatic opening had the audience on their feet and singing.

“At the heart of this World Meeting of Families is the concern for the unborn, is the abortion issue,” Father Pavone told the Register. “The family...READ MORE

Filed under father frank pavone, prolife, world meeting of families 2015

Six Takeaways From Pope Francis’ Address to Congress

09/24/2015 Comments (25)

1. The Pope knows how to play to an American crowd!

The Holy Father proved that he’s not so ignorant of American culture after all, by throwing the juiciest bone possible to Congress to get things started.  Francis referred to America as “the land of the free and the home of the brave,” prompting the gathered senators and reps to erupt in applause. And that was only one line in!

The Pope added more Americanisms throughout his address, and used four American figures as models for further reflection on deeper themes: Abraham Lincoln and liberty; Martin Luther King, Jr. and plurality and non-exclusion; Dorothy Day and social justice; and Thomas Merton and the capacity for openness to God....READ MORE

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Pope Francis Addresses the U.S. Congress

09/24/2015 Comments (1)

The Scene on the Ground before the Pope’s Arrival

This morning, Pope Francis continued his visit to the United States, becoming the first pope in history to address a joint session of Congress. Ahead of his visit there, official organizers made some 50,000 tickets available to congressmen, their guests, and the general public. And, crowds began to arrive at the Capitol building in the earliest hours of the morning, many starting to queue up shortly after midnight.

As the world’s media trained its focus on the opening day’s event, journalists traveling with the pope emitted signals that the historic address would unleash fireworks. Listeners to the pope’s remarks would have immediate...READ MORE

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The Sermon on the Mount and the Sermon on The Hill

09/24/2015 Comments (7)

Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted. —Jesus Christ

Pope Francis channeled Jesus this morning with a contemporary...READ MORE

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‘Wearable Blessings’ Blessed by the Pope

Harlem schoolchildren have bracelets that will be blessed by Francis.

09/24/2015 Comment
My Saint My Hero

Pope Francis and Christine Rich of My Saint My Hero meet in Rome; bracelet with Pope medal

– My Saint My Hero

“Prayer is real.”

It was a simple message that might well have been delivered from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica by humble Pope Francis. 

But the venue was a school in New York City, and the speaker was Christine Rich, co-founder of “wearable blessings” producer My Saint My Hero.

The third- and fourth-graders at East Harlem’s Our Lady, Queen of Angels School received the message with open hearts. They were preparing for a visit from Pope Francis and were praying for him. On the students’ wrists were the World Meeting of Families bracelets that Rich had given to the children and which will be blessed by the Holy Father during his visit to the school tomorrow. 

“We reminded them all...READ MORE

Filed under bracelets, my saint my hero, prayer, world meeting of families 2015

A First-Class Visit With St. Gianna’s Daughter

I was blessed to meet Gianna Emanuela Molla, providentially learning that her saint-mom and I have the same wedding anniversary date.

09/24/2015 Comment
Maryellen White, Society of St. Gianna

Blogger Susie Lloyd talks with Gianna Molla (l), with happy faithful gathered around, waiting their turn to talk with a first-class relic; wedding dress of St. Gianna

– Maryellen White, Society of St. Gianna

I always smile to see a first-class relic, but one never smiled back at me. Until now.

I’m talking about the daughter of St. Gianna Beretta Molla, Gianna Emanuela Molla, who is in attendance at the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia all week, graciously offering herself to the faithful (potentially 17,000 of them, yesterday alone). If our bodies are built cell by cell, out of the flesh and blood of our dear mothers, then Gianna is indeed a first-class relic of her mom.

Anyone who has heard her story knows she is more than that. She is the child for whom her mom gave her life.

St. Gianna’s pregnancies were always difficult — longer than typical and with long and painful deliveries....READ MORE

Filed under relics, st. gianna molla, world meeting of families 2015

Cardinal Danneels Admits to Being Part of 'Mafia' Club Opposed to Benedict XVI

New authorised biography also reveals papal delegate at upcoming synod wrote letter to Belgium government supporting same-sex "marriage" legislation because it ended discrimination against LGBT groups

09/24/2015 Comments (111)

Further serious concerns are being raised about Cardinal Godfried Danneels, one of the papal delegates chosen to attend the upcoming Ordinary Synod on the Family, after the archbishop emeritus of Brussels confessed this week to being part of a radical "mafia" reformist group opposed to Benedict XVI.

It was also revealed this week that he once wrote a letter to the Belgium government favoring same-sex "marriage" legislation because it ended discrimination against LGBT groups.

The cardinal is already known for having once advised the king of Belgium to sign an abortion law in 1990, for telling a victim of clerical sex abuse to keep quiet, and for refusing to forbid pornographic,...READ MORE

Filed under benedict xvi, cardinal danneels, same-sex marriage, synod on the family

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