Apr 18 – Homily: Enter Into His Passion

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We are all a part of the cause of suffering and crucifixion of Jesus. Let us enter more deeply into His Passion, imitating His charity and with increased gratitude. Ave Maria! Mass: Good Friday…
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Good Friday Reflection

This is a syndicated post from Aggie Catholics. [Read the original article...]

April 18, 2014

Isaiah 52:13-53:12 * Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9 * John 18:1-19:42

As a college student, leaving all that was familiar had a way of not fitting into my plans. On Good Friday, I recall the moment of my calling. After months of trying not to hear God’s relentless voice, I could take it no longer. Kneeling in a Eucharistic chapel, I pleaded aloud: “Lord, what do you want me to do?”

Desperate for an answer, I opened my prayer book and flipped it open to a page at random. Time for some vocation roulette! “Why don’t you give yourself to God once and for all… really… now!” Oops! I fumbled frantically for a second opinion. “‘Go, preach the Gospel. I will be with you.’ Jesus has said this, and he has said it to you.” Houston, I thought, we have a problem. On to random page number three: “If you see your way clearly, follow it. Why don’t you shake off the cowardice that holds you back?” Strike three and you’re out!

I looked immediately at the crucifix, just like we each look at the cross this Good Friday. I remember hoping against hope that I could find just one muscle on Christ’s body that was not tense in pain out of love for me. If I could just find one, I naively thought, then I would not have to give everything. For it felt like what God was asking of me was pretty much everything.

At that moment, I recall being ashamed to look at the cross.

Raised anew by his strength alone, this Good Friday, “Let us run by patience to the fight proposed to us: looking on Jesus, the author and finisher of faith, who having joy set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame.” -Hebrews 12:1-2

Father Michael Sullivan, LC
Fr Michael Sullivan is the Legion’s vocation director, chaplain of Pope John XXIII High School, and a Fightin’ Texas Aggie Wannabe.

St. Mary’s Catholic Center will post a daily reflection from a student, former student, or staff member every day of Lent. We have compiled these reflections into a handout, given to our students on Ash Wednesday. (15)

Cardinal Dolan blesses pregnant mothers, unborn babies

This is a syndicated post from CNA Daily News. [Read the original article...]

New York City, N.Y., Apr 18, 2014 / 01:59 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York blessed 30 expectant mothers and their unborn children in an April 6 Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, offering a message of hope and love.

“I came to more fully recognize that my faith is not just for me, but also for my unborn son and for all other women struggling with faith and grace in a difficult time,” Kimberly Page told the New York-based Chiaroscuro Foundation.

“This Mass and this blessing have added so much to my life as a Catholic and how I will raise my son.”

Page said it was “redemptive” to see the Church recognize life from conception “even if conceived in circumstances that are not God's intention for the family.”

The 30 pregnant women included first-time mothers as well as women with other children.

Guests at the Mass included patients from the Gianna Center for Women’s Health, residents of Good Counsel Homes, members of the Sisters of Life and employees of the New York archdiocese’s Family Life Office.

Page said she had learned about the blessing through the Sisters of Life, who have been supporting her spiritually during her pregnancy. She said she had been “struggling with love and forgiveness” until the blessing.

Hearing her child being blessed in the womb “has helped me fully accept the grace and love that comes through Christ and his Church,” she said.

“To attend Mass as a single mother is terrifying and sometimes painful but to feel the grace and support from the sisters and from the cardinal has been invaluable,” Page said, adding that the Mass made her feel comfortable receiving Communion.

Cardinal Dolan used a prayer from the “Rite of Blessing for a Child in the Womb.” Published by the U.S. bishops in May 2012, the rite begins with a prayer for the child.

“God, author of all life, bless, we pray, this unborn child,” Cardinal Dolan prayed. “Give constant protection and grant a healthy birth.”

He said that God has brought to the pregnant woman “the wondrous joy of motherhood.”

“Grant her comfort in all anxiety and make her determined to lead her child along the ways of salvation,” he added.


The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John

This is a syndicated post from The Chant Café. [Read the original article...]

I’m sure most readers are familiar with the normal Roman Rite passion tones. Recently, I have discovered the dominican tone, which is more melismatic.

Have a blessed Good Friday.


Celebrities Endorse a New Product: Children as Commodities

This is a syndicated post from The Daily Register. [Read the original article...]

By JENNIFER ROBACK MORES | Men and women on the front lines of the culture war have been saying for some time that the next step after redefining marriage will be redefining parenthood. The next arena for “choice,” they predicted, will be not just… (10)

WATCH: Way of the Cross at the Colosseum

This is a syndicated post from The Daily Register. [Read the original article...]

By Edward Pentin | Pope Francis will preside at the Stations of the Cross from Rome's Colosseum this evening, beginning at 3.15 p.m. EST. The following are the meditations given by Archbishop Giancarlo Maria Bregantini of… (15)

Papal preacher slams ‘curse’ of money-driven corruption

This is a syndicated post from CNA Daily News. [Read the original article...]

Vatican City, Apr 18, 2014 / 11:17 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his homily for Good Friday’s Passion liturgy, Papal Preacher Raniero Cantalamessa decried the poisonous actions of those who exploit others for financial gain, urging all to repent of their sin.

“’The love of money,’ Scripture says, ‘is the root of all evil,’ Cantalamessa exclaimed in his April 18 homily for Good Friday, stressing that “Behind every evil in our society is money, or at least money is also included there.”

“What lies behind the drug enterprise that destroys so many human lives, behind the phenomenon of the mafia, behind political corruption, behind the manufacturing and sale of weapons, and even behind – what a horrible thing to mention – the sale of human organs removed from children?”

Continuing, the preacher highlighted that “the financial crisis that the world has gone through and that this country is still going through, is it not in large part due to the ‘cursed hunger for gold,’ the auri sacra fames, on the part of some people?”

“Judas began with taking money out of the common purse. Does this say anything to certain administrators of public funds?”

Fr. Cantalamessa is a Franciscan Capuchin Catholic Priest who was appointed as Preacher of the Papal Household by Bl. John Paul II in 1980, and who therefore gives a weekly sermon during Advent and Lent in the presence of the Pope, the cardinals, bishops an prelates of the Roman Curia and the general superiors of religious orders.

Taking Judas’ betrayal of Jesus as a launching point for his reflections, Fr. Cantalamessa noted how scripture states that he “became a traitor,” and that he “was thus not born a traitor and was not a traitor at the time Jesus chose him; he became a traitor!”

Questioning those present for the liturgy inside of St. Peter’s Basilica how Judas ended up betraying Jesus, the preacher observed how some attempt to describe him as either belonging to a group of extremists or as being disappointed with Jesus’ idea of the messiah and wanting to take things into his own hands.

Although these thesis might be artistic, Fr. Cantalamessa explained that “they have no historical basis whatsoever,” and that “The Gospels – the only reliable sources that we have about Judas’ character – speak of a more down-to-earth motive: money.”

“Why are people surprised at this explanation, finding it too banal? Has it not always been this way in history and is still this way today?” he questioned, adding that “Mammon, money, is not just one idol among many: it is the idol par excellence, literally ‘a molten god.’”

Emphasizing how Satan is “the true enemy” of God, the Franciscan pointed out that “no one decides to serve Satan without a motive,” and that “whoever does it does so because they believe they will obtain some kind of power or temporal benefit from him.”

“No one can serve two masters. . . . You cannot serve God and mammon,” he said, quoting the Gospel of Matthew. “Money is the ‘visible god’ in contrast to the true God who is invisible.”

Fr. Cantalamessa then went on to describe how mammon is “the anti-God” because through it “Faith, hope, and charity are no longer placed in God but in money,” and that “A sinister inversion of all values occurs.”

Stressing how scripture tells us that the love of money “is the root of all evil,” the preacher highlighted that it is the underlying motive for most, if not all, criminal activity, such as the mafia, the drug enterprise and the buying and selling of weapons.

“But apart from these criminal ways of acquiring money, is it not also a scandal that some people earn salaries and collect pensions that are sometimes 100 times higher than those of the people who work for them and that they raise their voices to object when a proposal is put forward to reduce their salary for the sake of greater social justice?”

“Like all idols, money is deceitful and lying: it promises security and instead takes it away; it promises freedom and instead destroys it,” he continued, drawing attention to those “placed in positions of responsibility who no longer knew in what bank or monetary paradise to hoard the proceeds of their corruption.”

Haven’t they “found themselves on trial in court or in a prison cell just when they were about to say to themselves, ‘Have a good time now, my soul,’” Fr. Cantalamessa asked.

“For whom did they do it? Was it worth it? Did they work for the good of their children and family, or their party, if that is really what they were seeking? Have they not instead ruined themselves and others?”

Emphasizing how this betrayal of Jesus still continues today, the Franciscan observed that “the one betrayed is always Jesus,” and that “Judas sold the head, while his imitators sell body, because the poor are members of the body of Christ, whether they know it or not.”

 Referring to how one can betray Jesus in other ways besides these “high-profile cases,” Fr. Cantalamessa explained that “A man who betrays his wife, or a wife her husband, betrays Christ.”

“The minister of God who is unfaithful to his state in life, or instead of feeding the sheep entrusted to him feeds himself, betrays Jesus. Whoever betrays their conscience betrays Jesus.”

Drawing attention to the Gospel’s account of how Judas hanged himself after attempting to return the silver he took in exchange for hanging Jesus over, the preacher urged the congregation not to “pass a hasty judgment here.”

“Jesus never abandoned Judas, and no one knows, after he hung himself from a tree with a rope around his neck, where he ended up: in Satan’s hands or in God’s hands,” he observed, expressing “Who can say what transpired in his soul during those final moments?”

“’Friend’ was the last word that Jesus addressed to him, and he could not have forgotten it, just as he could not have forgotten Jesus’ gaze.”

Explaining how although it is true that Jesus himself said of Judas that “It would have been better for that man if he had not been born,” the eternal destiny of man “is an inviolable secret kept by God.”

What his story ought to teach us, the priest continued, is “to surrender ourselves to the one who freely forgives, to throw ourselves likewise into the outstretched arms of the Crucified One.”

“The most important thing in the story of Judas is not his betrayal but Jesus’ response to it,” Fr. Cantalamessa noted, highlighting how Jesus knew what was happening inside of his disciple, but that he did not expose it because he wanted to give Judas “the opportunity right up until the last minute to turn back.”

“He sought out Peter after his denial to give him forgiveness, so who knows how he might have sought out Judas at some point in his way to Calavary!”

“So what will we do? Who will we follow, Judas or Peter?” the Franciscan questioned those in attendance, adding that “Peter had confidence in the mercy of Christ, and Judas did not! Judas’ greatest sin was not in having betrayed Christ but in having doubted his mercy.”

Concluding his reflections, Fr. Cantalamessa encouraged attendees to be confident in the forgiveness of God, pointing out that “there is a sacrament through which it is possible to have a sure experience of Christ’s mercy: the sacrament of reconciliation.”

“How wonderful this sacrament is! It is sweet to experience Jesus as Teacher, as Lord, but even sweeter to experience him as Redeemer, as the one who draws you out of the abyss, like he drew Peter out of the sea, as the one who touches you and, like he did with the leper, says to you, ‘I will; be clean.’”

“Jesus knows how to take all our sins, once we have repented, and make them ‘happy faults,’” he explained, “faults that would no longer be remembered if it were not for the experience of mercy and divine tenderness that they occasioned.”


Nancy Pelosi Uses Holy Thursday Foot Washing Ritual to Raise Immigration Issue

This is a syndicated post from The Daily Register. [Read the original article...]

By Joan Frawley Desmond | Pope Francis inspired Catholics across the world last year when he visited a juvenile detention center in Rome to celebrate Holy Thursday, and washed the feel of a youn  Muslim woman. This year, he visited disabled… (16)

Catholic Relief Services response on its partnership with pro-abortion group Jhpiego

This is a syndicated post from LifeSiteNews.com Latest Headlines. [Read the original article...]

by The Editors Editor's note: Paul Eagle, spokesman for Catholic Relief Services, provided this statement to LifeSiteNews in response to questions after Jhpiego, one of CRS' pro-abortion partners, received the UN Population Award. Thank you for your letting us know about the award to Jhpiego and for your interest… (11)

Director of Advancement – Catherine McAuley High School (Portland, ME)

This is a syndicated post from CatholicJobs.com. [Read the original article...]

Education: Middle/High School, FT Employee
Catherine McAuley High School (Portland, ME)

The Director of Advancement reports directly to the Head of School and is responsible for raising philanthropic financial support for the institution’s educational programs, including operating, capital and endowment funds. He/she will identify, solicit and cultivate individuals, foundations and corporate prospects through direct mail, grants, personal visits and targeted events.

Job description: The Director of Advancement must have experience in planning, implementing and overseeing fundraising and other development efforts, such as Capital Campaign, Annual Giving, grant-writing, fundraising events, strategic planning, and cultivation of donors and volunteers. The ideal candidate will also have experience with marketing and public relations, communications, technology experience and community outreach. This position requires a person who is meticulously organized, a self-starter, appreciative that fundraising is a ministry, enthusiastic to ask donors for support, and extremely good at follow-through and follow-up.

Qualifications: • Bachelor’s degree required • A minimum of five years of broad experience in institutional advancement, preferably in a nonprofit or school organization • Excellent written and verbal communications skills, including high-level expertise in use of grammar, punctuation, editing and proofreading skills. • Accuracy and comfort with budgets and financial information • Strong attention to detail. • Exceptional initiative and proven ability to work well and deliver results in a collegial and fast-paced environment, with multiple stakeholders. • Ability to handle multiple assignments, meet deadlines and track program, budget, and fundraising information. • Flexibility and willingness to work as part of a team as well as independently • Build relationships with members of the Portland, Maine community. • Excellent judgment and discretion. • A commitment to and understanding of CMHS’s mission and values. • Facility with technology, Microsoft Office Suite software, donor tracking systems, and website applications.

Salary commensurate with experience. Only fully completed applications will be considered. Please submit as a PDF via email a letter of interest, resume, three professional references with contact information, writing sample, and clearances to:

Director of Advancement Search
Patti Richardson, Main Office
Catherine McAuley High School
631 Stevens Avenue
Portland, Maine 04103
[email protected]

Applications must be received by May 9, 2014 (17)

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