5 Feb 2011

February 6th - 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time

This weeks show has a discussion about the devotion to Our Lady of Lourdes, our weekly reflection on Sunday's gospel, our weekly celestial guides, and some local notices about things happening around the diocese.

Our Lady of Lourdes

Colin Hayes comes in this week to speak to our listeners about the apparition of Our Lady of Lourdes in anticipation of the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes on Friday, February 11th.  Colin leads us through a little historical background to the apparitions as well as about the symbols of Lourdes (candles, water, rock, processions and people) and how each represents a response to the messages of Our Lady to Bernadette. The apparitions of Our Lady of Lourdes began on 11 February 1858, when Saint Bernadette Soubirous, a 14-year-old peasant girl from Lourdes admitted, when questioned by her mother, that she had seen a "lady" in the cave of Massabielle, about a mile from the town, while she was gathering firewood with her sister and a friend. Similar appearances of the "lady" took place on seventeen further occasions that year with the "lady" ultimately describing herself as "I am  the Immaculate Conception". Pope Pius IX authoized the local bishop to permit the veneration of the Virgin Mary in Lourdes in 1862.
The prayer recited on this weeks show is one of the Prayer to Our Lady of Lourdes of the Sick:

O ever-Immaculate Virgin, Mother of Mercy,
health of the sick, refuge of sinners,
comforter of the afflicted,
you know my wants, my troubles, my sufferings;
look with mercy on me.
By appearing in the Grotto of Lourdes,
you were pleased to make it a privileged sanctuary,
whence you dispense your favors;
and already many sufferers have obtained
the cure of their infirmities, both spiritual and corporal.
I come, therefore, with complete confidence
to implore your maternal intercession.
Obtain, O loving Mother, the grant of my requests.
Through gratitude for your favors,
I will endeavor to imitate your virtues,
that I may one day share your glory.

  • A reminder to our listeners that the Limerick Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes takes place from 21st - 26th June 2011.
  • For those that would like to leave a petition at the Grotto in Lourdes please go here.
  • For those that would like to watch a webcam of the Grotto in Lourdes, here.
  • The offical website of the Santuary of Our Lady of Lourdes.
Sunday Gospel -  Matthew 5:13-16

In the second section of this weeks show, we reflect on the Gospel, concentrating on the symbols of salt and light. Colin found the Gospel, though short, very challenging as it challenges us to examine how faithful we are to being disciples of Christ by measuring ourselves as 'salt of the earth' and 'light to the world'.  We asked how we can season the world in which we live by living the Gospel message and witnessing to Christ.  We also concentrated on how we can allow God's light to shine through us through everyday, simple acts of kindness and love.

"You are the Saly of the Earth, You are the Light of the World" was the theme for the 2002 World Youth Day in Toronto Canda, presided over by Pope John Paul II. His homily for the concluding Mass is a challange to us all, young and the young at heart.

Further reflections here, here and here.

Saints of the Week

February 7th - St Mel - Bishop - Patron of the Diocese of Ardagh and Clonmacnoise
February 8th - St Josephine Bakhita (Virgin) - Patron of Sudan
February 9th - St Miguel Febres Cordero
February 10th - St Scholastica (Virgin)
                               - World Day of the Sick
                               - St Gobnait
February 12th - St Julian of Alexandria - martyred in 160AD at Alexandria, Egypt.

Local Notes and Reminders
  • Spring training of Chairpersons for Parish Pastoral groups Part One: The role and responsibility of pastoral chairs - Monday 7th February 7:30 - 10pm. Part Two: Making pastoral decisions together - Monday 21st Febraury 7:30 - 10pm
  • Talk Series: Stars in the sky: Some hero’s from my spiritual journey.Fr. Damien Ryan's talks on his spiritual heros - this Wednesday at 8pm in the Pastoral Centre he is giving a talk on St. Maximilian Kolbe. 
  • On Friday next as it is the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes and World Day of the Sick, there will be 10am Mass in Newcastle West Church that will incorporate the anointing of the sick.  We appealed to those who may have housebound neighbours, but would like to avail of the sacrament, to volunteer their services that morning.
As always thanks for listening!

John, Lorraine, Colin, Shane and Michael

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