27 Feb 2019

Spring on Lough Derg


You can find more information at the Lough Derg website HERE and the 2019 pilgrimage season guide HERE.

26 Feb 2019

‘Are you weak enough to be a priest? Are you broken enough to be priests? Are you afraid enough to be part of the priesthood?

(H/t Epic Pew):
It’s no secret that the Catholic Church is hurting. Breaking news and seemingly constant stories about scandal and abuse within the priesthood and clergy are daily reminders of this brokenness.
But if you’re looking for a ray of hope in the midst of the suffering, especially as it relates to the priesthood, you need to watch a brand new short film by Sabins Studio, “It is the Lord.”
The film documents the ordination day of four priests in the Philippines, and their Archbishop’s rallying call to a sacrificial life of priesthood.
During the homily, Archbishop Socrates Villegas asked the future priests three questions: Are you weak enough to be priests? Are you broken enough to be priests? Are you afraid enough to be part of the priesthood?



When we are on our knees, when we are clinging to faith by our finger tips, when we feel like we are lost sheep betrayed by our shepherds the reading from Sirach might be a source of inspiration.

(From Facebook post today:)

Sirach 2:1-11 - the first reading at Mass today - has been so important to me, ever since I was a teenager. Again and again it has given me life in challenging circumstances. If you're struggling on your journey, or worried at the state of the Church, why not ponder this word?:

My son, if you aspire to serve the Lord,prepare yourself for an ordeal.Be sincere of heart, be steadfast,and do not be alarmed when disaster comes.Cling to him and do not leave him,so that you may be honoured at the end of your days.Whatever happens to you, accept it,and in the uncertainties of your humble state, be patient,since gold is tested in the fire,and chosen men in the furnace of humiliation.Trust him and he will uphold you,follow a straight path and hope in him.You who fear the Lord, wait for his mercy;do not turn aside in case you fall.You who fear the Lord, trust him,and you will not be baulked of your reward.You who fear the Lord hope for good things,for everlasting happiness and mercy.Look at the generations of old and see:who ever trusted in the Lord and was put to shame?Or who ever feared him steadfastly and was left forsaken?Or who ever called out to him, and was ignored?For the Lord is compassionate and merciful,he forgives sins, and saves in days of distress.

“For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God” - Papal Message for Lent 2019


“For the creation waits with eager longing 
for the revealing of the children of God” (Rm 8: 19)

Dear Brothers and Sisters

Each year, through Mother Church, God “gives us this joyful season when we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery with mind and heart renewed… as we recall the great events that gave us new life in Christ” (Preface of Lent I). We can thus journey from Easter to Easter towards the fulfilment of the salvation we have already received as a result of Christ’s paschal mystery – “for in hope we were saved” (Rom 8:24). This mystery of salvation, already at work in us during our earthly lives, is a dynamic process that also embraces history and all of creation. As Saint Paul says, “the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God” (Rom 8:19). In this perspective, I would like to offer a few reflections to accompany our journey of conversion this coming Lent.

1. The redemption of creation

The celebration of the Paschal Triduum of Christ’s passion, death and resurrection, the culmination of the liturgical year, calls us yearly to undertake a journey of preparation, in the knowledge that our being conformed to Christ (cf. Rom 8:29) is a priceless gift of God’s mercy.

When we live as children of God, redeemed, led by the Holy Spirit (cf. Rom 8:14) and capable of acknowledging and obeying God’s law, beginning with the law written on our hearts and in nature, we also benefit creation by cooperating in its redemption. That is why Saint Paul says that creation eagerly longs for the revelation of the children of God; in other words, that all those who enjoy the grace of Jesus’ paschal mystery may experience its fulfilment in the redemption of the human body itself. When the love of Christ transfigures the lives of the saints in spirit, body and soul, they give praise to God. Through prayer, contemplation and art, they also include other creatures in that praise, as we see admirably expressed in the “Canticle of the Creatures” by Saint Francis of Assisi (cf. Laudato Si’, 87). Yet in this world, the harmony generated by redemption is constantly threatened by the negative power of sin and death.

2. The destructive power of sin

Indeed, when we fail to live as children of God, we often behave in a destructive way towards our neighbours and other creatures – and ourselves as well – since we begin to think more or less consciously that we can use them as we will. Intemperance then takes the upper hand: we start to live a life that exceeds those limits imposed by our human condition and nature itself. We yield to those untrammelled desires that the Book of Wisdom sees as typical of the ungodly, those who act without thought for God or hope for the future (cf. 2:1-11). Unless we tend constantly towards Easter, towards the horizon of the Resurrection, the mentality expressed in the slogans “I want it all and I want it now!” and “Too much is never enough”, gains the upper hand.

The root of all evil, as we know, is sin, which from its first appearance has disrupted our communion with God, with others and with creation itself, to which we are linked in a particular way by our body. This rupture of communion with God likewise undermines our harmonious relationship with the environment in which we are called to live, so that the garden has become a wilderness (cf. Gen 3:17-18). Sin leads man to consider himself the god of creation, to see himself as its absolute master and to use it, not for the purpose willed by the Creator but for his own interests, to the detriment of other creatures.

Once God’s law, the law of love, is forsaken, then the law of the strong over the weak takes over. The sin that lurks in the human heart (cf. Mk 7:20-23) takes the shape of greed and unbridled pursuit of comfort, lack of concern for the good of others and even of oneself. It leads to the exploitation of creation, both persons and the environment, due to that insatiable covetousness which sees every desire as a right and sooner or later destroys all those in its grip.

Resources for "the joyful season" of Lent 2019

Awake my soul, awake lyre and harp, I will awake the dawn!

The words of the psalmist call us to celebrate the joyful season of Lent. 

It is generally viewed penitential season which is true, but it is also a season of hope as we reflect on the great mercy of God. It seems appropriate that here in the northern hemisphere, Lent always falls during Spring with the promise of new life which echoes the liturgical season as we prepare for the Passion, Death but ultimately the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Like the way the season of Winter death gives way to the new life of Spring, we are called to die to our old selves and embrace the newness of life in Gods mercy. 
As we begin thinking about our preparations for Lent, may I suggest that we do not start with what we are going to give up? That puts the emphasis on us and often leads to confusion, e.g. fasting is not dieting, however much we would like our abandonment of some particular food to do good to our waistline! No, I think we have to start with the marginality of the desert, the place where Christ struggled with the demons and where we must learn to alter our focus. Before we even begin to think about what we shall give up, therefore, let us pray for our eyes to be opened to what needs to be changed in our lives and ask God’s help to do what is necessary. Lent is God’s gift to us. Let us use it as he intends.
Read full reflection - On the Edge of the World



Lenten Resources from the blog in prior years HERE.

We will be adding to this post over the next while.

UPDATES:



23 Feb 2019

24th February 2019 - Exploring what are Benedictine Oblates

On this weeks programme the SS102fm team are joined by Fr Columba McCann OSB from Glenstal Abbey to discuss and explore the idea of Benedictine Oblates. We have our regular reflection on the Sunday gospel as well as some notices and other liturgical odds and ends.

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

Benedictine Oblates

On this weeks programme we are joined by Fr Columba McCann OSB to explore the idea of Benedictine Oblates. Oblates are people who make a formal linkage to a particular abbey and community and commit themselves to living out the Rule of St Benedict in their personal lives as much as their circumstances permit. Fr Columba takes us through the process of discerning when and how a person may decide to enter into the preparatory programme before making the final oblation to become an Oblate of the abbey.

Fr Columba makes the point that like the fact each Benedictine community is autonomous, each community will take a different approach as to how they discern and integrate their Oblates into the extended family associated with each community.

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

You can find out more about becoming an Oblate of Glenstal Abbey HERE.

Oblates: An Introduction
Benedictine Oblates of Saint Meinrad Archabbey - information including video testimonials for this abbey in the USA.
Benedictine Oblates stand at a crossroads in monastic history


Gospel - Luke 6: 27-38
‘But I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. Do to others as you would have them do to you.
 ‘If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. If you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to receive as much again. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return.* Your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
 ‘Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.’
Reflections on this weeks Sunday gospel:

Word on Fire
Centre for Liturgy
Sunday Reflection
English Dominicans

Liturgical odds & ends

Liturgy of the Hours - Psalter week 3, 7th week in Ordinary time 

Saints of the Week

February 24th - St Walburga
February 26th - Saint Faustinian of Bologna
February 27th - St Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows
February 28th - Blessed Daniel Brottier
March 1st - St David, patron saint of 

Wales (First Friday)
March 2nd - St Chad (First Saturday)

22 Feb 2019

Some web browsing............


While we are still almost two weeks from Ash Wednesday, iBenedictines have some thoughts on our preparations:
As we begin thinking about our preparations for Lent, may I suggest that we do not start with what we are going to give up? That puts the emphasis on us and often leads to confusion, e.g. fasting is not dieting, however much we would like our abandonment of some particular food to do good to our waistline! No, I think we have to start with the marginality of the desert, the place where Christ struggled with the demons and where we must learn to alter our focus. Before we even begin to think about what we shall give up, therefore, let us pray for our eyes to be opened to what needs to be changed in our lives and ask God’s help to do what is necessary. Lent is God’s gift to us. Let us use it as he intends.
Read full reflection - On the Edge of the World

The Vatican’s Secret Rules for Priests Who Have Children

An Italian Town Fell Silent So The Sounds Of A Stradivarius Could Be Preserved



Calling Church to "Hear The Cry For Justice," Pope To Summit: "Be Concrete"

Know the pain of abuse victims and heal their wounds, Cardinal Tagle tells abuse summit 

Archbishop Eamon Martin offers message to survivors of abuse ahead of Vatican meeting for the protection of minors 

Protection of Minors: Reflection Points - 21 Reflection Points that Pope Francis wanted to share in order to help the work of the "Protection of Minors in the Church" meeting were presented on Thursday to participants.

Crux coverage of the Vatican summit on clerical abuse

20 Feb 2019

Popes Prayer Intentions - February 2019 - Pray for victims of human trafficking, of enforced prostitution, and of violence


There are issues where you are morally obligated to take a side, such as human trafficking. You cannot be neutral. If you don’t take a stand against it, if you don’t do something to fight it, you’re contributing to the continued existence of this tremendous injustice. Open your eyes to reality. Open your heart to the victims. “Although we try to ignore it, slavery is not something from other times. Faced with this tragic reality, no one can wash their hands of it without being, in some way, an accomplice to this crime against humanity. We cannot ignore the fact that there is as much slavery in the world today as there was before, or perhaps more. Let us pray for a generous welcome of the victims of human trafficking, of enforced prostitution, and of violence.”

16 Feb 2019

17th February 2019 - 2019 Dublin Divine Mercy Conference & Limerick Diocese publishes Guidelines for Pastoral Units & Team Ministry

This weeks programme is a little busy for the SS102fm team, with an interview with Don Devaney about the 2019 Dublin Divine Mercy Conference which takes place next weekend. In addition we have a quick chat with Rose O'Connor about the publication of the Guidelines for Pastoral Units published by Limerick diocese. We have our regular reflection on this weeks Sunday gospel as well as notices and other liturgical odds & ends.

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

2019 Dublin Divine Mercy Conference


John chats with Don Devaney about the Divine Mercy conference which takes place next weekend in the RDS in Dublin next weekend. Starting on Friday 22 February with a special evening for the youth - including testimonies, talks and music. Saturday 23 February starts at 10am and goes on to finish with a healing service led by Fr Brendan Walsh at 19.30pm. Sunday 24th February starts again at 10am and finishing with Mass at 15.15 - the main celebrant will be the papal nuncio - Archbishop Jude Thaddeus Okolo.

  • You can find out more about the conference (including videos and live stream of the talks) HERE.
  • You can listen to the interview with Don excerpted from the main programme podcast HERE

Limerick diocese publish Guidelines for new Pastoral Units and Team Ministry


Rose O'Connor joins the SS102fm team to discuss the publication of the new guidelines by the diocese of Limerick. Limerick Diocese has issued Guidelines for Team Ministry and Pastoral Units . The Guidelines deal with the roles and responsibilities of:

  • Pastoral Unit
  • Moderators & co-parish priests
  • Pastoral Unit Council
  • Local Mission Group
  • Continuation of existing finance practices within the existing parishes.

It is a follow up from the revised structure initiated in the diocese from 2nd December 2018 where teams of clergy are ministering in pastoral units or collectives of parishes but existing parish identity is being maintained. The new units involve a number of parishes operating together, with two or three priests ministering together as a team to the pastoral needs of these parishes. Each of the priests is a “co-Parish Priest” and will be moving around the pastoral Unit, resulting in different priests saying masses in parishes week on week.

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

You can read about the Guidelines HERE.

Gospel - Luke 6:17, 20-26




He came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea, Jerusalem, and the coast of Tyre and Sidon.
 Then he looked up at his disciples and said:
‘Blessed are you who are poor,
   for yours is the kingdom of God. 
‘Blessed are you who are hungry now,
   for you will be filled.
‘Blessed are you who weep now,
   for you will laugh.
 ‘Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice on that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets. 
‘But woe to you who are rich,
   for you have received your consolation. 
‘Woe to you who are full now,
   for you will be hungry.
‘Woe to you who are laughing now,
   for you will mourn and weep.
 ‘Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets.

Reflections on this weeks gospel:

Word on Fire
Sunday Reflections
English Dominicans

Centre for Liturgy

Liturgical odds & ends

Liturgy of the Hours - Psalter week 2, 6th week in Ordinary time

Saints of the Week

February 18th - St Colman of Lindisfarne
February 19th - Bl John Sullivan SJ
February 20th - St Jacinta Marto - Seer of Fatima
February 21st - St Peter Damian
February 22nd - Feast of the Chair of St Peter
February 23rd - St Polycarp

13 Feb 2019

A new saint for the Church - Blessed John Henry Newman to be canonised!


Pope Francis on Wednesday authorised the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to issue a decree attributing a miracle to the intercession of the Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman. The move clears the final hurdle in the cause for his canonisation.

Blessed Newman was born in London in 1801 and was ordained an Anglican priest in 1925. He was a leader in the Oxford Movement in the 1830s, which emphasised the Catholic roots of Anglicanism.

After a succession of clashes with Anglican bishops made him a virtual outcast from the Church of England, he joined the Catholic Church at the age of 44 and was ordained a Catholic priest in 1846. Pope Leo XIII made him a cardinal in 1879 while respecting his wishes not to be ordained a bishop.

A theologian and poet, he died in 1890 and his sainthood cause was opened in 1958. Pope Benedict XVI beatified him in Birmingham, England, in 2010.

The date for his canonisation will be announced after Pope Francis holds a meeting of cardinals to formalise their support for declaring Blessed Newman a saint.

Vatican News - Cardinal John Henry Newman to be proclaimed a Saint
Crux - Vatican announces Newman, Mindszenty move closer to sainthood 
CNA - Pope Francis approves canonization of John Henry Newman
BBC - John Henry Newman: Second miracle approved as sainthood looms
RTE - UCD founder Newman to be made a saint

12 Feb 2019

Some web browsing............


What if Christ appears as suddenly as an Irish beach?

Abuse of Faith - 20 years, 700 victims: Southern Baptist sexual abuse spreads as leaders resist reforms 


The Irish woman who exposed abuse of nuns by priests 25 years ago


The Abuse of Nuns and Sisters in the Catholic Church - iBenedictines

Lay Catholics: Stop Waiting for Bishops to do Your Job 


The Marvelous Preservation of St. Bernadette 


Candles of Atonement to mark Day of Prayer for Survivors of Abuse  

Historic document lays foundation to spread world peace - Pope Francis and Great Imam of Al-Azhar sign Document on Human Fraternity affirming brotherhood of all men and women and condemning every form of violence, especially those “clothed with religious motivations”.


ACP priest says new style of leadership is needed for Irish Church  - Bishops need courage not to keep looking over their shoulders to Rome and to confront – respectfully but robustly – those who want to lead us back to the nineteenth century. 


Dying priest described compulsory celibacy as “a kind of sin” - Fr Daniel O’Leary, who died on 21st January, said he wanted to point out that one of the fall-outs of a mandatory celibate life is "the violence it does to a priest’s humanity, and the wounds that it leaves on his ministry”.  


From Cardinal Müller a “Manifesto of Faith” For Today’s Church 


Cardinal Kasper says Mueller’s manifesto spreads ‘confusion and division’ 


How Nuns Have Shaped the Course of Art History 

Life is like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're going to get! 

Ethiopia's 'church forests' are incredible oases of green 

BBC - Asia Bibi - Pakistan's notorious blasphemy case 

Why I am a Catholic - iBenedictines

9 Feb 2019

10th February 2019 - #PanamainDublin - WYD2019

On this weeks programme John talks to Gerard Hanley from Emmaus Centre in Dublin about the celebration of WYD2019 in Dublin by those pilgrims who couldn't make it to Panama. We have our regular reflection on the weekly Sunday Gospel as well as other notices and liturigcal odds & ends. 

You can listen to the programme full podcast HERE.


WYD2019 - #Panama in Dublin!




This week John chats with Gerard Hanley who works in Youth and Young Adult Ministry at the Emmaus Centre in Dublin about a 24 hour event organised to coincide with WYD 2019 in Panama. Attended by 140 young pilgrims who slept on the floors on sleeping bags, the event included streaming of the Pope’s talks in Panama, music with Elation Ministries, Talk/Catechesis from Sr Kelly Francis CFR, Fr Patrick Cahill and Anna Keegan. Small groups discussed the talks and catechesis from Panama as well as participating in an interactive Stations of the Cross.


You can listen to the interview with Gerard excerpted from the main programme HERE.


You can read the homily of Archbishop Diarmuid Martin at the event HERE.


Gospel - Luke 5:1-11




Once while Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret, and the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he saw two boats there at the shore of the lake; the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little way from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing. Yet if you say so, I will let down the nets.” When they had done this, they caught so many fish that their nets were beginning to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Go away from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man!” For he and all who were with him were amazed at the catch of fish that they had taken; and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. Then Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.” When they had brought their boats to shore, they left everything and followed him.
Reflections on this weeks Gospel:

Word on Fire
Centre for Liturgy
English Dominicans
Sunday Reflections
Liturgical odds & ends


Liturgy  of the Hours - Psalter week 1, 5th week in Ordinary time


Saints of the Week


11th February - Our Lady of Lourdes - World Day of Prayer for the Sick
12th February - St Julian the Hospitaller
13th February - Bl Jordan of Saxony
14th February - St Cyril & Methodius, St Valentine
15th February - St Claude de la Colombiere
16th February - St John III of Constantinople

6 Feb 2019

Limerick Diocese issues guidelines for new Pastoral Units and Team Ministry


Following on from the establishment of pastoral units and teams from 2nd December 2018, this week Limerick Diocese has issued Guidelines for Team Ministry and Pastoral Units . The Guidelines deal with the roles and responsibilities of:

  • Pastoral Unit
  • Moderators & co-parish priests
  • Pastoral Unit Council
  • Local Mission Group
  • Continuation of existing finance practices within the existing parishes.
It is a follow up from the revised structure initiated in the diocese from 2nd December 2018 where teams of clergy are ministering in pastoral units or collectives of parishes but existing parish identity is being maintained. The new units involve a number of parishes operating together, with two or three priests ministering together as a team to the pastoral needs of these parishes. Each of the priests is a “co-Parish Priest” and will be moving around the pastoral Unit, resulting in different priests saying masses in parishes week on week.

Bishop Leahy commented at the launch of the Pastoral Units that “The main goal in establishing pastoral units and team ministry is greater co-operation between parishes. The hope is that there will be a greater critical mass of energy, competencies and lay volunteers at the service of a number of parishes. As the Irish saying puts it, Ní neart go cur le chéile - our strength lies in unity,” in the pastoral letter.

You can listen to an interview with Bishop Brendan Leahy about the Pastoral Units with SS102fm in December 2018 HERE.

The new Guidelines are available HERE

Introduction to the Guidelines from Bishop Brendan Leahy

In introducing team ministry and pastoral units, I believe God is at work. Change isn’t easy but just as it is necessary in our own personal lives (for instance, a child changes to become an adolescent and then an adult with many changes through life), likewise in the Church we too constantly need to reform and renew our Church life.
Priests will always be necessary. But it is also true that today we are seeing a deep discovery that every baptised person has a vocation. Pope Francis writes that each baptised person “is” a mission. Lay people live out their baptismal vocation in different ways – in family life, in the workplace, in various social projects. But one way today of living out our baptismal vocation is to take a more direct role in the organisation and day-to-day life of the Church in our local area.
I believe that through all that is going on God is drawing out a new lay profile of the Church. We will see a more prominent role of lay people in the running of parishes in the future. There is a considerable decline in the number of priests, the age profile of priests is rising, there are increasing demands, bureaucratic and otherwise on priests today. It is clear that on a practical level, something needs to be done.
Our new arrangements are not, however, just about responding to the decline in the number of priests. For the past fifty years, the Catholic Church throughout the world recognises we need to work more in a team spirit. It is something Pope Francis underlines when he speaks of “synodality”. We journey to God together. We need to promote arrangements that encourage greater co-operation and exchange between parishes.
The steps we are taking together are in tune with the phenomenon the world over, that is, a realisation that there needs to be greater collaboration and togetherness than before, whether it be in dealing with the issue of global warming, peace-keeping or combatting social problems. The Spirit of God is prompting this new sense of inter-dependence.
It is worthwhile hearing Pope Francis’ words who urges us to take new steps for the sake of mission:
I dream of a “missionary option”, that is, a missionary impulse capable of transforming everything, so that the Church’s customs, ways of doing things, times and schedules, language and structures can be suitably channelled for the evangelization of today’s world rather than for her self-preservation. The renewal of structures demanded by pastoral conversion can only be understood in this light: as part of an effort to make them more mission-oriented, to make ordinary pastoral activity on every level more inclusive and open…1
The 2016 Synod offered us important signposts to guide us in the steps we need to take at this stage of our journey in the Diocese. One of these steps is the development of “team ministry”. In the past two years we have worked on this and consulted widely and are now at a point of arranging our Diocese into Pastoral Units with teams of clergy ministering in each unit.

5 Feb 2019

Pedro Arrupe SJ - Anniversary and opening of cause for canonisation



Pedro Arrupe SJ died ‪on this day in 1991. He was the first Basque since St Ignatius to be superior General of the Jesuits. He trained as a doctor before entering the Society and became a member of the Japanese Province. When the atomic bomb was dropped in August 1945 he was novice master at the community on the edge of Hiroshima and he organised for the care of many of the victims in the city. He became Provincial in Japan, and was elected General of the Jesuits in 1965. He was a inspirational leader and was widely respected as a ‘re-founder’ of the Society of Jesus in the light of Vatican II. He became a vocal advocate of peace and justice being an integral part of the preaching of the Good News in the modern world. Just before he was incapacitated by a stroke in 1981, he established the Jesuit Refugee Service, now at work today in more than 50 countries worldwide.
In the Hands of God 
More than ever I find myself in the hands of God.
This is what I have wanted all my life from my youth.
But now there is a difference;
the initiative is entirely with God.
It is indeed a profound spiritual experience
to know and feel myself so totally in God’s hands.

Pedro Arrupe composed the above prayer after he suffered a debilitating stroke, the effects of which he patiently endured for the final ten years of his life. 

Over at Ignatian Solidarity they have a page dedicated to Pedro Arrupe SJ with many links and resources.

You can read more about Arrupe HERE.

Pope Francis in the UAE - Rome Reports







NCR - ‘Seeing Vatican and UAE Flags Side by Side Is a Remarkable Sight’ 

Zenit - ‘I Hope Pope Francis Will Call for Full Freedom for Everyone in Every Muslim-Majority Country’  

800 years later, a new commitment in the sign of peace 

What do religious leaders think about Abu Dhabi interfaith meeting?

2 Feb 2019

3rd February 2019 - Radio Maria Ireland

On this weeks programme, John has an interview with Fr Eamon McCarthy from Radio Maria Ireland to introduce us to Ireland's Catholic radio station.We have our regular reflection on the Sunday gospel as well as other liturgical odds and ends. 

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

Radio Maria Ireland
John has a discussion with Fr Eamon McCarthy about Radio Maria Ireland which is an online Irish radio station staffed by dedicated professional and volunteer staff. Though not directly connected with the Roman Catholic Church, Radio Maria operates as an instrument of the Church and as a tool for evangelization. It is obedient to the Magisterium of the Holy Catholic Church. Its aim is to bring Christ into every Irish home through home-produced programmes that serve the spiritual, educational and social needs of listeners – both at home and abroad – while having a profound respect for the specific diversity and richness of each ethnic group.

The umbrella body of Radio Maria, the World Family of Radio Maria (WFRM), has its legal headquarters in Rome, Italy. The administrative and technical office are based in Casciago, near Milan. WFRM shares its expertise and know-how with Radio Maria Ireland in order to help it achieve its mission. This enables us to ensure that our office and broadcasting facilities operate to the highest professional, technical and editorial standards.

In essence, Radio Maria is about reawakening our faith, is a call to conversion and a return to prayer, culminating in helping the Church in its mission to save souls. Hence, Radio Maria has a very strong missionary dimension, where all who work there are apostles and witnesses to Christ.

You can find out more about Radio Maria Ireland HERE.

You can listen to the interview with Fr Eamon McCarthy excerpted from the main programme HERE.

Gospel - Luke 4:21-30

Then he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. They said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” He said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, ‘Doctor, cure yourself!’ And you will say, ‘Do here also in your hometown the things that we have heard you did at Capernaum.’” And he said, “Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in the prophet’s hometown. But the truth is, there were many widows in Israel in the time of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, and there was a severe famine over all the land; yet Elijah was sent to none of them except to a widow at Zarephath in Sidon. There were also many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.” 
When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with rage. They got up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they might hurl him off the cliff. But he passed through the midst of them and went on his way.
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 in Ordinary time

Saints of the Week

February 4th - St Jane of Valois
February 5th - St Agatha
February 6th - Martyrs of Nagasaki 
February 7th - St Mel
February 8th - St Josephine Bakhita
February 9th - St Cuaron the Wise