This weekend the Easter Octave continues through the Second Sunday of Easter which is also Divine Mercy Sunday leading into the Feast of Saint Joseph the Worker on Monday. Because of Eastertide, several saints will not be celebrated this year in the Church liturgy, but we do not forget them as you'll see in our profiles and vignettes on the saints whose feasts normally fall on April 28, 29 and 30th. For the readings, liturgies, meditations, and profiles on all of these holy men and women, see DAILY LITURGY.
The DAILY WORD
Taken from the Gospel for Sunday's Mass:
"Receive the Holy Spirit; whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained." John 20: 22-23
April 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message
NOTE: We respectfully recognize and accept the final authority regarding apparitions, locutions and prophecies presently being reported around the world rests with the Holy See of Rome and the Magisterium of Holy Mother Church to whose judjment we humbly and obediently submit.
"Dear children! Also today I call you to conversion. You are concerned too much about material things and little about spiritual ones. Open your hearts and start again to work more on your personal conversion. Decide everyday to dedicate time to God and to prayer until prayer becomes a joyful meeting with God for you. Only in this way will your life have meaning and with joy you will contemplate eternal life. Thank you for having responded to my call."
For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE
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Everyone needs to say, "Jesus, I trust in You!"
In her column this week, Sister Mary Lucy Astuto focuses fittingly on Divine Mercy in reminding us how important God's Infinite Mercy is in the overall picture of salvation and without it, we haven't got a prayer! She shares a few personal experiences she had on the subject and urges all to drink of the refreshing Font of Divine Mercy available to everyone. All they need to do is to ask and it will be granted as Jesus has promised For her column, We all need the Mercy of God see GETTING TO THE HEART OF THE MATTER
Final Two Days of the Novena of Divine Mercy
Original painting used with permission
copyrite 1995-2000 Matthew Brooks
This weekend we bring you the eighth and ninth day of the Novena of Divine Mercy which concludes with DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY this weekend. This Novena was imparted to Blessed Faustina Kowalska and is intended for calling down God's Infinite Mercy on a sinful world at a time when it is badly in need of the Almighty's Mercy. For the two final days of the Novena and Chaplet of Divine Mercy, see DIVINE MERCY NOVENA
The Apostle of Divine Mercy will receive her crowning glory on Divine Mercy Sunday
Seven years ago Sister Faustina Kowalska was proclaimed Blessed by Pope John Paul II in St. Peter's Square on April 18th. It was through the efforts of this great Polish Pope that her cause was furthered and on Divine Mercy Sunday this year he will culminate his dauntless efforts of promoting devotion to Divine Mercy and recognition for Our Lord's special "Apostle of Mercy" when he canonizes this humble Polish nun as Saint Faustina. For her story, taken from the Top 100 feature on this newest saint of the Church, see SAINT FAUSTINA: APOSTLE OF DIVINE MERCY
Appreciation of the Holy Spirit
Today we continue our series in the search to uncover the wonderful treasures of the Church contained in the great Deposit of Faith. We present the first part of the catechesis on The Holy Spirit as explained in My Catholic Faith. The Holy Spirit is known by many names: the Advocate, the Sanctifier, the Holy Ghost, the Paraclete, etc. but there is no doubt He proceeds from the Father and the Son in the Dogma of Filioque and He is the fulfillment of what Christ promised: That He would send the Holy Spirit to guide His Church and her people. For part one in the 161st installment, see APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH
Events that happened this weekend in Church History
Numerous significant events happened during this four-day period throughout Church History. One of those events was the beatification ten years ago on April 29th, 1990 by Pope John Paul II of the first New World visionary - Blessed Juan Diego whom the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to in 1531. It was through the message at Guadalupe that millions converted to the faith and the slaughter of millions of innocent people ceased...until late in the 20th century when abortion raised its ugly head. The promoters for Blessed Juan's cause believe he will someday be remembered as one of the great saints in the Church. For other time capsule events that happened in Church history during this period, see MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES
His Excellency poses a thought-provoking question
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but the words of Bishop Fulton J. Sheen have been known to launch a thousand images in one's mind, one of the ways this late luminary did so much to evangelize the faith. Because of the urgency of the times and because few there are today who possess the wisdom, simplicity and insight than the late Archbishop who touched millions, we are bringing you daily gems from his writings. The good bishop makes it so simple that we have dubbed this daily series: "SIMPLY SHEEN".
"As the shadows of the sun are longest when its beams are lowest, so we are greatest when we make ourselves least. Pride slays thanksgiving. Our next greatest victory in making peace will be celebrated by a solemn national act of thanksgiving to God. How far away is it?"
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WORLDWIDE NEWS & VIEWS|
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Catholic World News For more from CWN and other Catholic wire services, see stories below
Thousands march in Guatamala to commemorate the two year anniversary of the death of Human Rights Bishop
On the second anniversary of the death of Auxiliary Bishop Juan Gerardi Conedera, thousands marched in memory of the slain bishop. While the trial drags on and the government and military continue to sandbag the proceedings, those observing the staunch human rights prelate's death marched from Metropolitan Cathedral to the site of his burial where a bronze memoral plaque commemorates this man of the Church who was bludgeoned to death on April 26, 1998 in the garage of his home just a few days after speaking out strongly against the human rights policies of the Guatemalan government and military tactics. continued inside
A Sample of the Catechism on Social Teaching released by Archbishop Van Thuan's Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace; Holy See frets over lack of cooperation by industrial nations
On Thursday, April 27th the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace released a 226-page volumen, which stresses key texts on Catholic social teaching. The volume is, in essence, just an "appetizer" to a future work on social teaching which is being prepared by the end of the Jubilee Year under the supervision of the president of the council, Archbishop Francois Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan. His and the Holy Father's efforts will show that Social Justice and Peace are not hte will of man, but rather the will of God, Who must be first in the hearts and minds of all those in social work positions. At the same time Bishop Diarmuid Martin, secretary for the council, has stated that the process for convincing powerful nations to reduce debt to third world countries is moving at a snail's pace as the haves drag their proverbial pocketbook. It is the goal of the Pope and Pontifical Council that all third world debts be reduced or erased by the end of the Jubilee Year. continued inside
Colombian Archbishop charges rebels with extortion through threats
Catholic in Bogata, Colombia are being extorted by Marxist rebels. The latter are taking thousands of dollars from parishes. Archbishop Pedro Rubiano Saenz of Bogata has related that the rebels demand that any collection taken up must be turned over to them. The Archbishop told his sheep, and those Marxist rebels, that the demand for money is outright extortion and cannot and should not be granted despite the threats. continued inside
Assisted Suicide struck strong blow by conscientious Senate Judiciary Committee
Evidently God is getting through to many members of the Senate Judiciary Committee who, on Thursday, upheld the ban which denies doctors the ability to prescribe medications for the purpose of suicide. The ban came from a case originating in Oregon and insturcts doctors to be merciful in helping those with severe illnesses and pain, allowing them the dignity due to every person. To many "mercy killing" is a misnomer for sadly, in truth, many doctors and helpers don't want to be bothered and encourage the patient to take the "easy way out" and put themselves out of their misery. True mercy is what the medical profession needs to cultivate with their patients and ask God for His Mercy as well. continued inside.
Cardinal Sodano celebrates Brazil's Quintennial at site where Christianity was first brought to South America's shores 500 years ago
Bringing with him a special Papal Message to the Brazilian Bishops, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Angelo Sodano celebrated an outdoor Holy Mass on the beach in Porto Seguro, Brazil yesterday with 200,000 worshippers on the site where the first Mass was first said in Brazil in 1500 on April 26th, a major holiday in Brazil. He is in South America's largest country to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Portuguese explorer Pedro Alvares Cabral bringing Christianity to Brazil. In attendance were many ethnic groups including ancestors from the original Indian tribes first evangelized. Just prior to the Mass, Bishop Jayme Chemello offered a statement in the spirit of reconciliation and in the name of the Church asking forgiveness from Indians and Afro-Brazilians. A Matalaue native came forward and embraced the bishop in a sign of true reconciliation witnessed by all. continued inside.
Jubilee Eucharistic Congress in Ecuador on Feast of Corpus Christi to center on Jesus and Mary
While Brazilians celebrate now, in Quito, Ecuador a Eucharistic Congress will be held from June 18-25 during which time the Solemnity of Corpus Christi will be celebrated. At this Congress, the theme will be "Jesus Christ, Through Mary, Bread of Life for the World." It will be a celebratory time for ordinations, First Communions, and of apostolates bestowed on priests and laity alike as well as vows of religious congregations being received by the presiding Auxiliary Bishop Julio Teran Dutari of Quito.continued inside.
Religious leaders from both the Catholic Church and the Islam faith urge Philippine government to use caution in standoff with mountain terrorists in Basilan
The sad saga continues as Catholic and Muslim religious leaders try desperately to seek an immediate cease-fire between government troops and Abu Sayyaf rebels in the Island of Basilan in the southern Philippines where they hold 27 Catholic hostages, a result of demands that all Christians get out of the area leaving it solely to the Muslims. Two Catholic men have already been beheaded and the terrorists have threatened more if the Filipino government doesn't give in to demands, one of which is to seek more representation in government affairs. Dialogue, accompanied by prayer and sacrifice, seem to be the only way to allow God to intervene in this crisis, but present efforts and the stubbornness on the part of both the rebels and government make the situation perilous. continued inside.
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