Reflections

Reflections – our thoughts and prayers

The Holy Spirit Changes Hearts

“Jesus had told his disciples: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses” (Acts 1:8). That is exactly what happened. Those disciples, at first fearful, huddled behind closed doors even after the Master’s resurrection, are transformed by the Spirit and, as Jesus says in today’s Gospel, “they bear witness to him” (cf. Jn 15:27). No longer hesitant, they are courageous and starting from Jerusalem, they go forth to the ends of the earth. Timid while Jesus was still among them, they are bold when he is gone, because the Spirit changed their hearts.”

Pope Francis, Pentecost 2018

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We Have Ascended with Him!

Today our Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven; let our hearts ascend with him. Listen to the words of the Apostle: If you have risen with Christ, set your hearts on the things that are above where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God; seek the things that are above, not the things that are on earth. For just as he remained with us even after his ascension, so we too are already in heaven with him, even though what is promised us has not yet been fulfilled in our bodies.

St Augustine (429-495)

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Prayer of Pope Francis for Vocations

LORD OF THE HARVEST,

  • BLESS young people with the gift of courage to respond to your call. Open their hearts to great ideals, to great things.
  • INSPIRE all of your disciples to mutual love and giving—for vocations blossom in the good soil of faithful people.
  • INSTILL those in religious life, parish ministries, and families with the confidence and grace to invite others to embrace the bold and noble path of a life consecrated to you.
  • UNITE us to Jesus through prayer and sacrament, so that we may cooperate with you in building your reign of mercy and truth, of justice and peace. Through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

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Do Not Be Afraid!

As he said to the terrified Apostles on the wind-swept sea, Christ says once more to the men and women of our time: “Take heart, it is I; have no fear!”

(Mk 6:50). If he is with us, why should we fear? However dark the horizon of humanity may seem, today we celebrate the radiant triumph of Easter joy. If a contrary wind slows the march of peoples, if the sea of history is tossed by storms, let no one yield to dismay and lack of trust! Christ is risen; Christ is alive in our midst; truly present in the Sacrament of the Eucharist, he offers himself as the Bread of salvation, Bread for the poor, the Food of wayfarers.

Pope John Paul II, 2003

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Holy Week : An invitation to experience the love and mercy of God

The Cross is the word through which God has responded to evil in the world. Sometimes it may seem as though God does not react to evil, as if he is silent. And yet, God has spoken, he has replied, and his answer is the Cross of Christ: a word which is love, mercy, forgiveness.

Pope Francis

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Embracing Poverty in Lent

Lent is a fitting time for self-denial; we would do well to ask ourselves what we can give up in order to help and enrich others by our own poverty. Let us not forget that real poverty hurts:
no self-denial is real without this dimension of penance. I distrust a charity that costs nothing and does not hurt.
Pope Francis, 2017

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Lent and Ash Wednesday

Lent reminds us, therefore, that Christian life is a never-ending combat in which the “weapons” of prayer, fasting and penance are used. Fighting against evil, against every form of selfishness and hate, and dying to oneself to live in God is the ascetic journey that every disciple of Jesus is called to make with humility and patience, with generosity and perseverance.

Pope Benedict XVI, 2006

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Giving Thanks with All our Hearts

The best way to show my gratitude to God is to accept everything, even my problems, with joy.
St Teresa of Calcutta (1910 – 1997)

Happiness can only be achieved by looking inward and learning to enjoy whatever life has and
this requires transforming greed into gratitude.
St John Chrysostom (d. 407)

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It’s all about Jesus!

The only reason for my being killed, is that I have taught the doctrine of Christ. I thank God it is for this reason that I die. I believe that I am telling the truth before I die. I know you believe me and I want to say to you all once again – ask Christ to help you become happy. I obey Christ. After Christ’s example, I forgive my persecutors. I do not hate them. I ask God to have pity on all and I hope my blood will fall on my fellow men as a fruitful rain.

St Paul Miki (1564 – 1597)

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Prayer as a Priority

 

If the lungs of prayer and the word of God do not nourish the breath of spiritual life, we risk suffocating
in the midst of a thousand daily cares. Prayer is the breath of the soul and of life.

Pope Benedict XVI

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