Dear children; Today I call you to a humble, my children, humble devotion. Your hearts need to be just. May your crosses be your means in the battle against the sins of the present time. May your weapon be patience and boundless love – a love that knows to wait and which will make you capable of recognising God's signs – that your life, by humble love, may show the truth to all those who seek it in the darkness of lies. My children, my apostles, help me to open the paths to my Son. Once again I call you to pray for your shepherds. Alongside them, I will triumph. Thank you. Medjugorje message, October 2, 2012
We are defeated Christians if we do not forgive enemies, and if we do not pray for them. And we find so many sad, discouraged Christians because they did not have this grace of enduring with patience and overcoming with love.
Therefore, we ask Our Lady to give us the grace to endure with patience and overcome with love. How many people – so many old men and women – have taken this path! And it is beautiful to see them; they have that beautiful countenance, that serene happiness. They do not say much, but have a patient heart, a heart filled with love. They know what forgiveness of enemies is, they know what it is to pray for enemies. So many Christians are like that! Pope Francis, May 24, 2013
UNDER THE MANTLE OF MARY
I sincerely thank each of you for your service, for your love for the Church and the Mother, and here, I place you, and I place myself, too, under the mantle of Mary, Our Mother.
Mother of the silence that preserves the mystery of God, deliver us from the idolatry of the present, to which those who forget are condemned. Purify the eyes of pastors with the balm of memory:
that we might return to the freshness of the beginning, for a praying and penitent Church.
Mother of the beauty that blossoms from fidelity to daily work, remove us from the torpor of laziness, of pettiness, and defeatism. Cloak Pastors with that compassion that unifies and integrates: that we might discover the joy of a humble and fraternal servant Church.
Mother of the tenderness which enfolds in patience and mercy, help us burn away the sadness, impatience, and rigidity of those who have not known what it means to belong.
Intercede with your Son that our hands, our feet and our hearts may be swift: that we may build the Church with the truth in charity.
Mother, we will be the People of God, on pilgrimage towards the Kingdom. Amen.
• Pope Francis, concluding his homily today to Italian bishops gathered in St Peter‘s Basilica for their General Assembly. Full homily here.
Booked for the UK next month is Fr Petar Ljubicic, the Franciscan priest chosen by the Medjugorje seer Mirjana to reveal the 10 secrets given to her by Our Lady.
He will speak at three venues in the London area. The dates are June 30, July 1 and July 2.
Fr Petar is expected to arrive in London on June 30 following a speaking engagement in Sestola, Italy, on June 29. His busy schedule continues when he leaves for Zurich on July 3 for a conference in Switzerland.
June 30, 2013 Church of the Sacred Heart 101 Horseferry Road, London
from 3:00pm to 6:00pm
July 1, 2013 Church of St Teresa Newbury Park, Ilford, Essex
from 5:00pm to 8:00pm
July 2 2013 Church of Christ the Prince of Peace Portmore Way, Weybridge
from 5:00pm to 8:00pm
Pope Francis has invited Catholics around the world to pray today (Friday) especially for the Church in China. Noting that May 24th marks the feast of Our Lady Help of Christians, who is venerated in a special way at the shrine of Sheshan near Shanghai, the Pope at his general audience this week prayed that Chinese Catholics would “continue to believe, hope, love” and never be afraid to speak about their faith. Quoting from a prayer written especially for the Church in China by his predecessor, Benedict XVI, Pope Francis asked Our Lady to support Catholics there and to help the Church grow in faithfulness to the Successor of Peter and in service to all the Chinese people.
The Holy Father said, “I urge all Catholics around the world to join in prayer with our brothers and sisters who are in China, to implore from God the grace to proclaim with humility and joy Christ, who died and rose again; to be faithful to His Church and the Successor of Peter and to live everyday life in service to their country and their fellow citizens in a way that is consistent with the faith they profess. Making our own a few words of prayer to Our Lady of Sheshan, together with you I would like to invoke Mary:
“Our Lady of Sheshan, sustain all those in China, who, amid their daily trials, continue to believe, to hope, to love. May they never be afraid to speak of Jesus to the world, and of the world to Jesus. Mary, Virgin most faithful, support Chinese Catholics, render their commitments, which are not easy, more and more precious in the eyes of the Lord, and nurture the affection and the participation of the Church in China in the journey of the Universal Church.”
• The photograph below shows the statue of Our Lady of Sheshan alongside the statue of St Leopold Mandic in Medjugorje.