6 May 2017

7th May 2017 - Fatima: Reflecting on the 100th anniversary

To our regular readers - apologies from your Blog Editor. Currently I am home in Ireland on leave so time to post and keep the blog updated has been a bit limited. Usual service should resume after May 14th.




On this weeks programme John and Shane are joined by Michael Keating to reflect on the special place of Fatima as we approach the centenary of the first apparition there on May 13th. We have our regular reflection on this weeks gospel as well as notices and other liturgical odds & ends.

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

Vocation Sunday and new prayer initiative for vocations 2017

This Sunday is the 4th Sunday of Easter and is often called Good Shepherd or Vocation Sunday as there is a special emphasis on praying for vocations to the priesthood and the religious life.

Vocations Sunday will be marked in Ireland this year with the launch of a new vocations prayer initiative. 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima. To coincide with this event the Bishops’ Council for Vocations in collaboration with Saint Joseph’s Young Priests Society, the Knights of Saint Columbanus and Vocations Ireland are asking that on the opening day of the centenary celebrations on 13 May, a time of prayer will be held for an increase in vocations to the priesthood and religious life in Ireland.

Pope Francis will be in Fatima for the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima on 13 May where he will canonise two of the visionaries of the Marian apparitions there – the young shepherds Jacinta and Francisco Marto. Here in Ireland on the same day people are invited to pray the Angelus or a decade of the Rosary for vocations to the priesthood and religious life at 12noon. It is also encouraged that on the 13th of each month, from May – October 2017, that a decade of the rosary be prayed for vocations in Ireland.

Commenting on the prayer initiative Father Willie Purcell, National Coordinator for Diocesan Vocations said, “This is an invitation to prayer we are extending to parishes, schools and families. Pope Francis said that ‘vocations are born in prayer, and only in prayer can they persevere and bear fruit’”.

Welcoming the new prayer initiative, Margaret Cartwright, Director of Vocations Ireland, said, “Vocations Ireland are delighted to be part of the joint prayer initiative because praying for vocations is the most important aspect of vocation promotion and working together to create a culture of vocation is so important in our world today. Pope Francis has called for a fresh and courageous perspective when helping youth discern and discover their vocation, prayer is key to that discernment process.”

Kieran Hickey, the Dublin Diocesan President of Saint Joseph’s Young Priests Society, said that they are fully supportive of this prayer initiative, as prayer is the source of priestly vocation.

Commenting on this new prayer initiative Barney Mac Mahon, Supreme Knight with the Knights of Saint Columbanus said, “We can’t understand our calling and our vocation until we listen to the Lord, until we look upon the Lord and until we realise who it is we’re really serving.”

The prayer initiative will be launched this Sunday to coincide with the broadcast of the annual Vocations Sunday Mass on RTÉ One Television. Father Purcell said that the prayer initiative ties in with the sentiments expressed by Pope Francis in his message for Vocations Sunday in which he says, “I ask parish communities, associations and the many prayer groups present in the Church, not to yield to discouragement but to continue praying that the Lord will send workers to his harvest.”

Reflecting on the 100th anniversary of Fatima

On this weeks programme Michael Keating joins with us to reflect on the events at Fatima in Portugal 100 years ago this year with the apparition of Our Lady to the three Seers of Fatima.  

The Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God, appeared six times to three shepherd children near the town of Fatima, Portugal between May 13 and October 13, 1917. Appearing to the children, the Blessed Virgin told them that She had been sent by God with a message for every man, woman and child living in our century. 

Summary of the Key Words of the message of Fatima
Source - official website of the Shrine of Fatima
which has the links to each word
The message of Our Lady, though reported in much detail and still the object of much discussion, was very simple. She asked the children to be faithful to the rosary and to the devotion to her Immaculate Heart, and she asked for the consecration of Russia and the world to herself, warning of the dangers to the world of continued wars. She emphasised the need for penance. She taught the children several prayers and the one which is most remembered is the so-called Decade Prayer often added to the end of each decade of the rosary:

"O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to Heaven especially those in most need of  thy mercy"

You can listen to Michael's reflection on Fatima extracted from the main programme podcast HERE.

You can find out more from:

Official website of the Shrine of Fatima

- Narrative of the Apparitions
- Message of Fatima
EWTN - The True Story of Fatima

Gospel - John 10:1-10

Ancient icon of Christ the Good Shepherd
from the Catacomb of Saint Priscilla, Rome
Jesus said:"Amen, amen, I say to you,whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gatebut climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber.But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice,as the shepherd calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.When he has driven out all his own,he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him,because they recognize his voice.But they will not follow a stranger;they will run away from him,because they do not recognize the voice of strangers."Although Jesus used this figure of speech,the Pharisees did not realize what he was trying to tell them.
So Jesus said again, "Amen, amen, I say to you,I am the gate for the sheep.All who came before me are thieves and robbers,but the sheep did not listen to them.I am the gate.Whoever enters through me will be saved,and will come in and go out and find pasture.A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy;I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly."
Reflections on this weeks gospel

Word on Fire

English Dominicans
Centre for Liturgy
Sunday Reflections

Liturgical odds & ends

Liturgy of the Hours - Psalter week 4; 4th week of Easter

Saints of the Week

May 8th - St Victor

May 9th - St Thomas Pickering
May 10th - St Comgall also St Damien of Molokai
May 11th - St Francis di Girolamo
May 12th - St Pancras of Rome
May 13th  - Our Lady of Fatima


Opening a Door on the Bible

A series of workshops that set the Bible in the context of our lives have been taking place since the start of the year and are about to conclude with final workshop on the Gospel according to John presented by Mike Culloty. The workshops take place in the Terence Albert O’Brien hall on Dominic Street close to the Tait Clock on Baker Place on Saturday mornings from 10 to 12.30. All are welcome.

Enquiries: Jordan O’Brien op; email: oplimerick@gmail.com; Mobile: 086 4096207

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