21 May 2016

May 22nd 2016 - The Most Holy Trinity

In the first part of this week's programme Canon Coggeshall of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest who tells us of their upcoming novena to the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the Sacred Heart Church, The Crescent, Limerick which takes place from Thursday May 26th to Friday, June 3rd. There will be Mass and devotions to the Sacred Heart at 12 noon (except for Sunday, May 29th which will be at 10.30am) and 7.00pm each day. For more details check out their website HERE.

In the second and third part of the programme John and Ann are joined by Fr. John Mockler who gives us an insightful explanation of the Most Holy Trinity. You can listen to the full programme podcast HERE

The Most Holy Trinity


Fr. John began by explaining that first and foremost, the Trinity is true God. When we are baptised we receive Three Persons: the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, who are equal in divinity, power, love, knowledge, peace, etc. This means that each Person of the Trinity is the source of all that is good. The communication between God the Father and God the Son is love. There are no limitations or obstacles to the flow of love between the Father and the Son and between the Son and the Father. This flow of love is infinite. 

Everything that the Father grants to the Son, the Son returns perfectly to the Father in the power of the Holy Spirit. It is important to remember that the Holy Spirit is also a Person with His own intellect and will (we often think of the Holy Spirit in terms of the form of fire which He assumed at Pentecost).



Each Person of the Trinity always existed. At the beginning of the Bible we read: 'Let us make man in our image...' not 'let me make man in my image.' The Trinity created the angels and humankind to share in what they have as a Trinity of Persons. God created us to share into eternal happiness in this life and the next. Those who will share in the eternal happiness of the Trinity are those who share in the happiness of the Trinity in this life. We pray to the God of love and mercy in us (which we received at Baptism), not the God of love and mercy outside of us. The Trinity we pray to has to be the Trinity in us. If the Trinity is in us that is the assurance or insurance policy of happiness in the next life.  With the Trinity we have the power to overcome anything life can throw at us.

What's the best way we can help our relationship to grow with the Trinity? The greatest means is what Jesus has provided, which is the Mass. A person who goes to Mass goes to heaven, because heaven and earth unite during the Mass. It is the most powerful, direct encounter with the Trinity. Jesus does not leave the happiness, joy, peace etc. of heaven when He comes to us in the Mass with all the angels and saints. That is what we are receiving into our soul in the Eucharist. We are increasing that life of heaven in us. Yes, we receive Jesus in the Eucharist, but it is equally true to say that we also receive the life of heaven into our souls when we receive Holy Communion. The other good things we do, daily prayer, doing our work/duties every day, and all the good we do, also help to increase this life within us too, but nothing compares with the Mass.

Fr. John also reminded us that Mass will be celebrated at Holy Trinity Well Grotto in Dromin-Athlacca parish on Trinity Sunday at 7.00pm. Trinity Well is about a mile from Dromin Church.

You can listen to the interview with Fr. John excerpted from the main programme podcast HERE.

Gospel - John 16:12-15



Jesus said to his disciples:
‘I still have many things to say to you
but they would be too much for you now.
But when the Spirit of truth comes
he will lead you to the complete truth,
since he will not be speaking as from himself
but will say only what he has learnt;
and he will tell you of the things to come.
He will glorify me,
since all he tells you will be taken from what is mine.
Everything the Father has is mine;
that is why I said:
All he tells you will be taken from what is mine.’

Fr. John said the first thing that strikes us from this Gospel is that we have to be led. 'When the Spirit of Truth comes He will lead you...' We cannot lead ourselves - we have to be led. Jesus sends us the same Spirit who led Him. Jesus never did one thing which wasn't illuminated, inspired and directed by the Spirit. God's Spirit will lead us safely, because He leads us to 'the complete truth,' i.e. the Holy Spirit leads us to Jesus, who is 'The Way, the Truth and the Life' (John 14:6). What's the truth Jesus teaches us: the truth about where we came from, why we are here, where we are going, what is the purpose of human life. God created us in the hope that we would live as His children, containing the Holy Trinity within us. The Holy Spirit will lead us to enter into that life of the Trinity where we will have happiness and joy forever. In the meantime, we can overcome anything with the power of the Spirit in us who will lead us through anything. If people turn more and more to speak to the three Persons they have in them they would have much greater joy and happiness and their burdens would be lightened.

Reflections on this week's gospel:
Liturgical odds & ends

Liturgy of the Hours: Psalter Week 4

Saints of the Week
May 25th - St. Bede the Venerable
May 26th - St. Philip Neri
May 27th - St. Augustine of Canterbury

Notices

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament: - continues to take place in Ardagh Church each Monday from 11.00am to 1.00pm and 5.00pm to 9.00pm.

The Annual Sacred Heart Novena: - takes place in St. Senan's Parish (Shanagolden/Foynes/Robertstown) in Robertstown Church from May 26th to June 3rd with Mass at 8pm each evening.

20 May 2016

Pope Francis this week in Rome - To Ignore the poor is to despise God






Pope: ‘To Ignore the Poor Is to Despise God’ - ‘God’s mercy toward us is linked to our mercy toward others,’ Francis warns on May 18. ‘No messenger and no message can replace the poor we meet on the journey, because in them we meet Jesus himself.’


 


17 May 2016

Supporting Migrants in Limerick

Cross Post from the Diocese of Limerick:

"Migrants are our brothers and sisters in search of a better life, far away from poverty, hunger, exploitation and the unjust distribution of the planet’s resources which are meant to be equitably shared by all. Don’t we all want a better, more decent and prosperous life to share with our loved ones?" Pope Francis 2016

In September 2015 the Diocese of Limerick issued a number of resources for parishes who might like to:
  • support migrants, especially refugees in their community
  • build awareness of the Christian calling to welcome and hospitality among parishioners
    As Limerick prepares to WELCOME 100 Syrian refugeesBishop Brendan LEAHY has reminded us of our call to welcome all migrants: those who have been here for some time, those arriving new and those with particular classifications or status. "We need to support migrants in whatever way we can and by our solidarity. We need to remember our own history of emigration...This is the very period where we could start preparing ourselves. I’d love to see a bit more coordination going on bet ween us all at this stage. As a migrant to Limerick myself, I have been very welcomed"

    Here are some of those resources again with some updated material:
    General resources for a parish to welcome migrants
    The presence of migrants and refugees seriously challenges the various societies which accept them. Those societies are faced with new situations which could create serious hardship unless they are suitably motivated, managed and regulated. How can we ensure that integration will become mutual enrichment, open up positive perspectives to communities, and prevent the danger of discrimination, racism, extreme nationalism or xenophobia? Pope Francis 2016

    • Become aware of the make up of your parish. THESE 2011 figures are a good start.
    • Doras Luimni have a useful 'Welcome to Limerick' book for new immigrants, as well as a variety of leaflets HERE that you could offer to new migrants in you parish. Read it yourself to become aware of the challenges migrants face.
    • Doras Luimni also have done some great work in Portlaoise parish welcoming families. THIS leaflet offers some ideas of what they do,  and THIS leaflet shows some of the events in this years social inclusion week.
    • Some simple starter ideas for parises are HERE Many simple involve already established groups, thinking a little differently.
    • Community and Belonging is one of the themes of the Synod - some resources that may be relevant to this conversation are included in THIS booklet - a welcoming group, parish visitation and hositality after Mass for instance.
    Consider how you, as a parish, notice, welcome and include newcomers who come into your church and community 
    • General welcome poster in many languages HERE
    • Posters for Christmas in various languages HERE
    • 2015 Migrant resource pack for parishes HERE
    • 2014 Migrant resource pack with ideas for home and parish HERE
    Liturgy and prayer 
    • Greetings and dismissals at Mass in 10 languages HERE
    • Mass readings in several languages are available HERE
    • Candle lighting cards in various languages are available HERE
    • Prayer of unity in 5 languages HERE
    • See also the 2015 and 2014 migrant resource packs above for prayers of the faithful, homilies etc
    • Polish blessing of food at Easter - an explanation, prayers and some translations HERE
    What do we teach and live as Catholics?
    Biblical revelation urges us to welcome the stranger; it tells us that in so doing, we open our doors to God, and that in the faces of others we see the face of Christ himself. Many institutions, associations, movements and groups, diocesan, national and international organizations are experiencing the wonder and joy of the feast of encounter, sharing and solidarity. They have heard the voice of Jesus Christ: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock” (Rev 3:20). Yet there continue to be debates about the conditions and limits to be set for the reception of migrants, not only on the level of national policies, but also in some parish communities whose traditional tranquillity seems to be threatened. Faced with these issues, how can the Church fail to be inspired by the example and words of Jesus Christ? The answer of the Gospel is mercy. Pope Francis 2016
    • Limerick diocese - A Christian response to the refugee crisis - a short handout from Lorraine Buckley
    • Fr Alan Hilliand - a resource for parishes trying to include   and an article HERE in the Furrow wondering why words about words (liturgy) are easier for us to discuss than words that take flesh (migrants)
    • US Bishops - a library of information on Catholic teaching on immigraton HERE
    • Doras Luimni have a program to raise awareness and tackle misconceptions about asylum seekers and refugees in Ireland - perhaps your parish might run it for all those in ministry, and then for the whole community. You can view the program HERE
    These are simply a collection of possible resources for parishes. The main resource however is our own attitudes and hearts: our willingness to go out and be with people where they are at. As Christians, our hospitality does not begin at the door of our church or depend on the strangers request. We are called to recognise all children of God as beautiful, welcome and as sent by God to this time and place.
    "May every parish, every religious community, every monastery, every sanctuary of Europe, take in one family" Pope Francis 2015
    "This is the mission of the Church: to heal the wounds of the heart,
    to open doors, to free people, to say that God is good,
    God forgives all, God is the Father, God is affectionate, God always waits for us...
    "It’s true, we have to help and create organizations that help in this:
    yes, because the Lord gives us the gifts for this.
    But when we forget this mission, forget poverty, forget the apostolic zeal
    and instead, place our hope in these human means, the Church
    slowly slips into becoming an NGO, it becomes a beautiful organization:
    Powerful, but not evangelical, because it lacks that spirit,
    that poverty, that power to heal". (Pope Francis, Feb 2015)

    17th May 2016 - Life is an Ocean: Following St Brendan the Navigator

    Cross post from Sr Louise over at Pilgrims Progress:
       
    
    St. Brendan heads on his voyage
    Today the Church in Ireland celebrates the memorial of St Brendan the Navigator. St. Brendan travelled tirelessly to evangelise and establish monasteries following his ordination to the priesthood at age 28. The sixth-century monk frequently sailed the high seas to spread the Gospel throughout Ireland as well as to Scotland, Wales and Brittany in the north of France. According to a 1,500-year-old Irish tale, however, St. Brendan embarked on one particularly epic journey in the winter of his 93-year-old life. Here, he is said to have set out onto the Atlantic Ocean with sixty pilgrims searching for the Garden of Eden! Regardless of what we think or believe about St. Brendan's voyages, they have a lot to teach us!

    As a symbol for life’s pilgrimage, I return to my roots. I think of those Celtic monks who sailed out to sea in coracles, little boats, without a rudder for steering. The coracle was not just a boat, it speaks of much more–of journey and pilgrimage, risk and wonder, fear and peace, prayer and praise, wild storms and quiet sunsets, the discovery of many things unknown. Over the past week I had the opportunity to spend time in Galway where my accommodation looked out over the sea, friend and foe of man. I was struck by the force and the peace of this immense body of water. I was mesmerized by how the sunlight fell gently on the waves making them glisten and reminding me that the same Creator God who knows how many drops are in the ocean, knows how many grains of sand are on the shore and how many times our heart beats each day. This was both awesome and humbling at the same time.
    The coracle also speaks of a way that people can travel together. But the coracle, the boat, is not the point, it’s merely the vessel, it only exists so that other things can happen. Though  the monks affirmed human freedom, they also trusted God to guide them to their place of resurrection, the place of wholeness and fulfillment, where they would experience God’s vision for their lives. They experienced divine guidance in the wind and waves that propelled their skiffs to surprising places. That's not to say that they weren't afraid. They assumed providence and synchronicity everywhere.

    I am that Celtic pilgrim. I allow the Lord (though not always without resistance) to steer my boat and guide it. We are all pilgrims on an uncertain, but holy adventure and the most important thing we can do is embrace the adventure and remember that by our choices we are creating new adventures for ourselves and others.
    While the world becomes more routine and predictable, or so we think, as we grow older, our lives are still an adventure in which we – like the Celtic peregrines – pilgrim from day to day.

    The Celtic Christians recognized that life involves change. God was not only our companion amid change, but the inspiration to growth and change. The God of Israel never stands still but is immersed in history, shaping and being shaped by the flow of human experience and decision-making. Jesus is always on the move, never settling down, but venturing to new places to fulfill his mission. Every turn of the road brought Jesus a surprising encounter and opportunity to share God’s hospitality, healing, mercy and love. He puts many people upon our path to journey with us and open our eyes to the wonders of each day, the beauty of loving and being loved, of family, of community, of friendship, of unconditional giving.

    We are all pilgrims. We can, in the spirit of the Celtic adventurers, join openness to each moment with the intentionality necessary for personal and professional excellence. Many of you reading this know me well...I'm a perfectionist and a micromanager, I make mistakes, I fall down but I get up often with your help and above all because the Lord raises me up.

    There is a Christy Moore song which has the following words and the chorus often returns to my heart:

    "With no maps to guide us we steered our own course
     Rode out the storms when the winds were gale force
     Sat out the doldrums in patience and hope
      Working together we learned how to cope.

     
    Life is an ocean and love is a boat
     In troubled water that keeps us afloat
     When we started the voyage,there was just me and you
     Now gathered round us we have our own crew
    ."

    The more I reflect the more I see that this is our life in our little coracle but we do not stay on our own. We start out with one or two companions along the way, working through the winds of change and the troubles which can accompany these. In the boat, just like in the Scriptures, Jesus is with us, albeit that he may be appear to be sleeping as the  waves slosh over the side. As our faith grows, often in the midst of those whispered prayers as the boat quakes from side to side: "Jesus, I believe, help my unbelief." As life goes on, we gather other pilgrims along the way and we develop a strong bond with the communion of saints too who form the 'crew' in our boat.
    As a pilgrim, this is my challenge...to welcome the God of surprises in the unexpected and the interruptions! We may, like the magi, go home by another way, traveling a pathway we had not expected. This is not the way I planned but the peace in my heart tells me it is the right way. So I  keep travelling! 

    15 May 2016

    15th May 2016 – Pentecost Sunday

    On this week’s programme John is joined by Martina O’Sullivan and Michael Keating to reflect on the Solemnity of Pentecost.  The Holy Spirit is perhaps the more difficult of the Persons of the Trinity to speak about. We can have some sense of what it means to have a Loving Father and Jesus came to us as God-made-man, but the Holy Spirit is more difficult for us to understand so Scripture gives us images: fire, water, breath etc. and tells us the Holy Spirit will be our Helper, Paraclete etc. The team reflect on the revelation of the Holy Spirit in the Old and New Testaments and talk about the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit. They also share their experience of Life in the Spirit seminars. 

    You can listen to the podcast of this week's programme HERE and the reflection on the Holy Spirit is excerpted HERE.



    Gospel - John 14:15-16, 23-26 - Pentecost Sunday





    Jesus said to his disciples: “If you love me you will keep my commandments. 
    I shall ask the Father, and he will give  you another Advocate to be with you for ever. 
    If anyone loves me he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we shall come to him and make our home with him. 
    Those who do not love me do not keep my words. 
    And my word is not my own; it is the word of the one who sent me. 
    I have said these things to you while still with you; 
    but the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, 
    will teach you everything and remind you of all I have said to you.” 

    Reflections on this week's gospel:

    Word on Fire
    English Dominicans
    Centre for Liturgy
    Sunday Reflections



    Liturgical odds & ends

    Liturgy of the Hours - psalter week 3; week 7 in Ordinary Time

    Saints of the Week
    May 16th - St. Brendan, Abbot
    May 17th - St. Paschal Baylon
    May 19th - St. Celestine

    12 May 2016

    13th May - Feast of Our Lady of Fatima (Repost)

     
    “Throughout history there have been supernatural apparitions and signs which go to the heart of human events and which, to the surprise of believers and non-believers alike, play their part in the unfolding of history. These manifestations can never contradict the content of faith and must, therefore, have their focus in the core of Christ's proclamation: the Father's love which leads men and women to conversion and bestows the grace required to abandon oneself to him with filial devotion. This too is the message of Fatima which, with its urgent call to conversion and penance, draws us to the heart of the Gospel” (The Message of Fatima, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, June 26, 2000).
    The Blessed Virgin Mary is venerated under this title following apparitions to three shepherd children — Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco — in Portugal in 1917. The message of Fatima includes a call to conversion of heart, repentance from sin and a dedication to the Blessed Virgin Mary, especially through praying the Rosary.
     
    From CatholicCulture.org:
     
    The famous apparitions of the Virgin Mary to the children of Fatima took place during the First World War, in the summer of 1917. The inhabitants of this tiny village in the diocese of Leiria (Portugal) were mostly poor people, many of them small farmers who went out by day to tend their fields and animals. Children traditionally were assigned the task of herding the sheep.

    The three children who received the apparitions had been brought up in an atmosphere of genuine piety: Lucia dos Santos (ten years old) and her two younger cousins, Francisco and Jacinta. Together they tended the sheep and, with Lucy in charge, would often pray the Rosary kneeling in the open. In the summer of 1916 an Angel appeared to them several times and taught them a prayer to the Blessed Trinity.

    On Sunday, May 13, 1917, toward noon, a flash of lightning drew the attention of the children, and they saw a brilliant figure appearing over the trees of the Cova da Iria. The "Lady" asked them to pray for the conversion of sinners and an end to the war, and to come back every month, on the 13th.

    Further apparitions took place on June 13 and July 13. On August 13 the children were prevented by local authorities from going to the Cova da Iria, but they saw the apparition on the 19th. On September 13 the Lady requested recitation of the Rosary for an end to the war. Finally, on October 13, the "Lady" identified herself as "Our Lady of the Rosary" and again called for prayer and penitence.

    On that day a celestial phenomenon also took place: the sun seemed to tumble from the sky and crash toward earth. The children had been forewarned of it as early as May 13, the first apparition. The large crowd (estimated at 30,000 by reporters) that had gathered around the children saw the phenomenon and came away astounded.

    Official recognition of the "visions" which the children had at the Cova da Iria came on October 13, 1930, when the bishop of Leiria - after long inquiry - authorized the cult of Our Lady of the Rosary at the site. The two younger children had died: Francisco (who saw the apparition but did not hear the words) on April 4, 1919, and his sister Jacinta on February 20, 1920. Sister Lucia died on February 13, 2005, at her Carmelite convent in Coimbra, Portugal, after a long illness.
    You can read more about the apparition and messages of Fatima HERE and HERE and also from the Fatima Sanctuary website including a live feed HERE.

    Word on Fire reflection HERE and CNA resources HERE.
     
    Previous reflections on the devotion to Mary, the Rosary and the linkages to Fatima available HERE.

    Some web browsing....


    Lady Gaga’s Mass pics and posts on faith stir Catholic reaction
    Gaga: “God Is Never a Trend, No Matter Who the Believer”
    The Pope Heard My Confession’  - “I could tell that it was my heavenly Father that was speaking to me through a person”

    Catholic Missionaries: Where a Wiccan Meets Mercy - "The magic makes me very disoriented," says a man who needs a rosary.

    Rome: The Streets of Saints and Emperors - The city reminds us that even our own forms of worship may one day pass, but some things last forever

    5 Things to Know About First Saturdays - The devotion was specifically requested by the Blessed Virgin Mary at Fatima

    Pope calls for commission to study reinstating female deacons

    Pope thanks nuns for telling him there’s a ‘disconnect’

    NCR - Francis to create commission to study female deacons in Catholic church

    America - Catholic Women Deacons

    Pope Francis says he's open to studying the female diaconate

    Not-So-Ordinary Time

    Why doesn't Sabina Higgins respect the right to life of my nine-year-old daughter?


    7 May 2016

    8th May 2016 - EWTN: Interview with - Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord

    On this weeks programme John is joined by Paul MacAree who is an associate producer with EWTN Ireland to tell us about the story of Mother Angelica and her creation of one of the largest religious radio and tv stations in the world.

    On the blog we have our regular Sunday gospel reflections and links. In Ireland this Sunday is the Solemnity of the Lords Ascension.

    You can listen to the podcast of this weeks programme HERE.

    Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN)

    Paul MacAree Associate Producer with EWTN Ireland tells us the story of Mother Angelica and her creation of the largest religious Radio & TV station in the world with a viewing of over 240 million worldwide 24/7.
     
    When Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) was launched on August 15, 1981, many felt there would be little demand for a Catholic network. Now, in its 33rd year, EWTN has become the largest religious media network in the world, transmitting programming 24 hours a day to more than 230 million homes in 144 countries and territories on more than 4,800 cable systems, wireless cable, Direct Broadcast Satellite (DBS), low power TV and individual satellite users.
     
    EWTN Global Catholic Network airs family and religious programming from a Catholic point of view in English and Spanish. Providing more than 80% original programming, EWTN offers inspiring talk shows, entertaining children's animation, exclusive teaching series, live coverage of Church events, and thought-provoking documentaries.
     
    Beyond the broadcast vision, however, first and foremost, the spiritual heart of the EWTN mission is to bring the Eternal Word, Jesus Christ, to all. The religious centers of the network are visited daily by pilgrims who travel to Irondale to worship in the chapel or visit the breathtakingly beautiful Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville, Alabama. Visitors of all faiths are invited to "come away by yourself to a quiet place, and rest awhile" (Mark 6:31) and to pray before the Most Blessed Sacrament, adored and loved perpetually by the cloistered nuns now living at Our Lady of Angels Monastery in Hanceville or by the faithful in Irondale.
     
    Without making plans for the future, Mother Angelica, relying completely on Divine Providence, believes in going "where God opens the door." It is that deep and constant faith in the Lord, which has called Mother Angelica to act on God's invitation to do the impossible, through Him, who accomplishes the miraculous.

    Interview with Paul MacAree excerpted from the main programme podcast HERE.
     
    Links:
    Gospel - Luke 24:46-53 - Ascension of the Lord


    Jesus said to his disciples:
    “Thus it is written that the Christ would suffer
    and rise from the dead on the third day
    and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins,
    would be preached in his name
    to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
    You are witnesses of these things.
    And behold I am sending the promise of my Father upon you;
    but stay in the city
    until you are clothed with power from on high.”
     
    Then he led them out as far as Bethany,
    raised his hands, and blessed them.
    As he blessed them he parted from them
    and was taken up to heaven.
    They did him homage
    and then returned to Jerusalem with great joy,

    and they were continually in the temple praising God.
    Reflections on this weeks gospel:

    Word on Fire
    English Dominicans
    Centre for Liturgy
    Sunday Reflections




    Pope St. Leo the Great:
    “Since the Ascension of Christ is our elevation, and since, where the glory of the Head has preceded its, there hope for the body is also invited, let us exult, dearly beloved, with worthy joy and be glad with a holy thanksgiving. Today we are estab­lished not only as possessors of Paradise, but we have even pen­etrated the heights of the heavens in Christ, prepared more fully for it through the indescribable grace of Christ which we had lost through the ill will of the devil.”
     
    Liturgical odds & ends

    Liturgy of the Hours - psalter week 3; 7th week of Easter

    Saints of the Week
    May 9th - Saint Sanctan of Kill-da-Les
    May 10th - St Comgall
    May 11th - Blessed John Rochester
    May 12th - St Nerues and St Achilleus
    May 13th - Our Lady of Fatima
    May 14th - St Matthias
    May 15th - Saint Isidore the Farmer

    Christ is Risen (Matt Maher) - A reminder that we are still in Easter!


    Lord I need you - Matt Maher


    Pope Francis - I have a dream for Europe!

    Pope Francis on Friday received the International Charlemagne Prize of Aachen, Germany, from Marcel Philipp, the Lord Mayor of the German city. The International Charlemagne Prize is awarded for work done in the service of European unification. The Prize is named for Charles the Great (Charlemagne), the Franconian king revered by his contemporaries as the "Father of Europe."

    Pope Francis said “if we want a dignified future, a future of peace for our societies, we will only be able to achieve it by working for genuine inclusion.”

    “To the rebirth of a Europe weary, yet still rich in energies and possibilities, the Church can and must play her part,” Pope Francis said. “Her task is one with her mission: the proclamation of the Gospel, which today more than ever finds expression in going forth to bind the wounds of humanity with the powerful yet simple presence of Jesus, and his mercy that consoles and encourages.”

    What has happened to you, the Europe of humanism, the champion of human rights, democracy and freedom? What has happened to you, Europe, the home of poets, philosophers, artists, musicians, and men and women of letters? What has happened to you, Europe, the mother of peoples and nations, the mother of great men and women who upheld, and even sacrificed their lives for, the dignity of their brothers and sisters? 

    "I dream of a Europe where being a migrant is not a crime, but a summons to a greater commitment on behalf of the dignity of every human being ...I dream of a Europe that promotes and protects the rights of everyone, without neglecting its duties toward all. I dream of a Europe of which it will not be said that its commitment to human rights was its last utopia."


     


     
    
    CNA - Receiving Charlemagne Prize, Pope says 'I have a dream' for Europe
    Vatican Radio - Text of Pope Francis address
    Vatican Radio - Pope Francis' dream for a Europe with 'fresh air of honesty'

    Crux - As great speeches do, Francis freeze-frames the moment for Europe
    OSV - Pope Francis challenges Europe to rediscover its lost identity Receiving the prestigious Charlemagne Prize May 6, the Argentine pope asks of the continent: ‘What has happened to you?’
    Millennial - Is it time for Europe's "Pope Francis moment"?