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The Joy of the Gospel – April 29th

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Jesus holds us together.


A nun reveals that a paperback Bible she uses is more than 25 years old. The book has a torn cover, and its spine is held together with strips of thick transparent tape. As she was working at her computer, her Bible fell to the floor, splitting into two parts. As she retrieved the pieces of the book from the floor, she realized just how battered and tattered her Bible was. Then she smiled as she recalled an old proverb: “A Bible that is falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t.”

The nun does not claim to have her life all together, but she believes that she would be in worse shape if she did not read the words in this holy book every day. St. Paul compares Jesus to a cornerstone in a building, and he says that we are the “household of God…held together” by Jesus. So, when we feel that our life is “in pieces” or we are feeling battered, we can turn to Jesus and say, “Hold me together, Jesus. I hand all the pieces of my life to you.”

Compiled by Deirdre Powell


Source: Living Faith, Daily Catholic Devotions (adapted).

Oct 24 - St Anthony Mary Claret (1807-70) archbishop of Santiago, Cuba

Summary: St Anthony Claret, Bishop.Born in Sallent (Spain) in 1807; died in exile in France on this day in 1870. Spent more than a decade preaching missions and retreats in Catalonia, and founded a religious institute, later known as the Claretians, for this work. Was appointed archbishop of Santiago (Cuba) where he aroused opposition for his spiritual and social reforms and for championing the rights of the indigenous peoples. Finally, as chaplain to Queen Isabella II, drew the arts and sciences into his missionary endeavour. Noted for his work of religious renewal through the spoken and printed word.

Anthony ClaretThere are 3,100 Claretian missionaries working in sixty-five different countries around the world. Founded in Spain by St Anthony Mary Claret in 1849 as the Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the initials of each member is CMF (Cordis Mariae Filius = "Son of the Heart of Mary").

Patrick Duffy tells the story of the founder.

Early life
Amc1Anthony was born in Catalonia, Spain. His father was a weaver and Anthony also trained as a weaver. But when he was twenty-two, he entered the seminary at Vich and was ordained a priest six years later in 1835. After working for a while in his home parish, he went to Rome to work for the Propagation of the Faith. In Rome he entered the novitiate of the Jesuits but had to leave because of ill health. He returned to Spain and was assigned as pastor in his home parish. He spent ten years giving missions and retreats in Catalonia. As well as preaching, he wrote many books and set up a religious publishing house.

On mission in Gran Canaria
In 1848 when his life was threatened, Anthony's bishop sent him to the Canary Islands where he preached with great success and touched the hearts of many of the people. After a year he returned to Catalonia and in the following year gathered together five priests who formed the basis of the Missionary Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (popularly known as Claretians). He also founded the great religious library at Barcelona, now Libreria Claret.

AMC3Archbishop of Santiago, Cuba
At the suggestion of the Queen of Spain, Isabella II, Anthony was named archbishop of Santiago, Cuba (1850). For the next seven years he made pastoral visitations, reorganised the seminary, boosted the morale and zeal of the clergy. preached against slavery, and regularised marriages. As a result of his activity he was frequently threatened with death and on one occasion an attempt was made on his life.

Confessor to Queen Isabella II
In 1857 Anthony was recalled to Spain to be confessor to the queen. He reluctantly accepted this and became rector of the centre for ecclesiastical studies at the Escorial near Madrid. In 1868 when Queen Isabella II went into exile in Paris, Anthony went also.  In 1869 he was in Rome, preparing for the First Vatican Council. At the insistence of the Spanish ambassador, he was placed under house arrest in the Cistercian monastery at Fontfroide near Narbonne, where he died at the age of 63. His remains were ultimately returned to Vich.

Message and relevance
The patience of St. Anthony Claret was tested in the political upheavals of the nineteenth century, both in his native Spain and in Cuba. His efforts at reform stirred up a great deal of hostility.
Liturgical Readings for: Saturday, 24th October, 2020

Saturday of 29th week of Ordinary Time, Year 2


A reading from the letter of St Paul to the Ephesians             4:7-16
Christ, is the head by whom the whole body grows.

Each one of us, however, has been given his own share of grace, given as Christ allotted it. It was said that he would:

When he ascended to the height, he captured prisoners, he gave gifts to men.

When it says, 'he ascended', what can it mean if not that he descended right down to the lower regions of the earth? The one who rose higher than all the heavens to fill all things is none other than the one who descended. And to some, his gift was that they should be apostles; to some, prophets; to some, evangelists; to some, pastors and teachers; so that the saints together make a unity in the work of service, building up the body of Christ. In this way we are all to come to unity in our faith and in our knowledge of the Son of God, until we become the perfect Man, fully mature with the fullness of Christ himself.

Then we shall not be children any longer, or tossed one way and another and carried along by every wind of doctrine, at the mercy of all the tricks men play and their cleverness in practising deceit. If we live by the truth and in love, we shall grow in all ways into Christ, who is the head by whom the whole body is fitted and joined together, every joint adding its own strength, for each separate part to work according to its function. So the body grows until it has built itself up, in love.

The Word of the Lord.


Responsorial Psalm          Ps 121
Response                               I rejoiced when I heard them say: 'Let us go to God's house.'

1. I rejoiced when I heard them say:
'Let us go to God's house:
And now our feet are standing
within your gates, a Jerusalem.       Response

2. Jerusalem is built as a city
strongly compact.
It is there that the tribes go up,
the tribes of the Lord.                       Response

3. For Israel's law it is,
there to praise the Lord's name.
There were set the thrones of judgement
of the house of David.                     Response

Gospel  Acclamation           Ps 144: 13
Alleluia, alleluia!
The Lord is faithful in all his words and loving in all his deeds.
Alleluia !

or                                          Ez 33: 11
Alleluia, alleluia!
I take pleasure, not in the death of a wicked man, says the Lord,
but in the turning back of a wicked man who changes his ways to win life.
Alleluia !


A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke     13:1-9
Unless you repent you will all perish as they did.'

Some people arrived and told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with that of their sacrifices. At this he said to them, 'Do you suppose these Galileans who suffered like that were greater sinners than any other Galileans? They were not, I tell you. No; but unless you repent you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen on whom the tower at Siloam fell and killed them? Do you suppose that they were more guilty than all the other people living in Jerusalem? They were not, I tell you. No; but unless you repent you will all perish as they did.'

He told this parable: 'A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came looking for fruit on it but found none. He said to the man who looked after the vineyard, "Look here, for three years now I have been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and finding none. Cut it down: why should it be taking up the ground?" "Sir," the man replied "leave it one more year and give me time to dig round it and manure it: it may bear fruit next year; if not, then you can cut it down."'

The Gospel of the Lord.

Gospel Reflection        Saturday         Twenty Ninth Week in Ordinary Time       Luke 13:1-9

At the beginning of today’s gospel reading, there is mention of two tragedies. One was brought about by the abuse of power; Pilate’s troops had killed Galilean worshippers while they were offering sacrifice in the Temple. The second tragedy was an unfortunate accident; a tower fell down in Siloam and killed fourteen people. Both kinds of tragedies happen today. People continue to be killed because of the brutal abuse of power and people lose their lives through unexpected accidents. Jesus warns his contemporaries against thinking that those who lost their lives in these two tragedies were somehow greater sinners than others. He dismisses any simplistic connection between suffering and sin. Instead, he uses these two incidents to get his listeners to reflect on the vulnerability and fragility of human life. Our physical lives can be taken from us without any prior warning. For this reason, we need to value the present moment and see it as an opportunity to turn more fully towards the Lord and away from our own selfish desires, or in the language of Jesus in the gospel reading, as an opportunity to repent. Sometimes tragic events that impact on us have a way of making us take stock of our lives. The Lord can be calling out to us through such events. In the parable of the fig tree that follows Jesus’ reflection on these tragic events, we are introduced to a farmer who sees hope for a fig tree whose plight appears hopeless. The farmer stands up to the owner of the vineyard where the tree is planted and makes a case for the tree having a future, in spite of its failure to bear fruit for three years.


The scripture readings are taken from The Jerusalem Bible, published by Darton, Longman and Todd Ltd and used with the permission of the publishers.  http://dltbooks.com/The Gospel reflection comes from WEEKDAY REFLECTIONS 2019-20: The Word of God is Living and Active by Martin Hogan and published by Messenger Publications  c/f www.messenger.ie/bookshop/



Liturgical Readings for: Saturday, 24th October, 2020

Sliocht as an céad Litir Naomh Pól chuig na hEifísigh       4:7-16
Tá a thabhartas féin faighte ag gach duine ar leith againn de réir mar a riar Críost orainn é.

A bhráithre, tá a thabhartas féin faighte ag gach duine ar leith againn de réir mar a riar Críost orainn é, faoi mar a deir an scrioptúr:
“Ar dhul in airde dó, ghabh sé slua cimí agus thug tabhartais do dhaoine.”
Cad tá le tuiscint as an “dul in airde” sin ach gur tháinig sé anuas chomh maith ar an domhan íochtarach seo? An té sin a tháinig anuas, is é an duine céanna é a chuaigh thar na flaithis uile amach chun go líonfadh sé an chruinne cheathartha. Agus is eisean a thug do dhaoine áirithe bheith ina n-aspail, do dhaoine eile bheith ina bhfáithe, do dhaoine eile bheith ina soiscéalaithe, agus do dhaoine eile fós bheith ina n-aoirí agus ina múinteoirí, d’fhonn na naoimh a chur in oiriúint dá ndualgas, mar atá, corp Chríost a thógáil mar theach; go dtí go mbeimid go léir tagtha chun aontacht chreidimh agus chun
aontacht eolais ar Mhac Dé nó go mbeimid tagtha in inmhe, ar chomhchéim le Críost féin agus é i mbun a mhéide. Ní bheimid inár naíonáin feasta, dár luascadh i measc na dtonn agus dár gcaitheamh anonn agus anall ag gach leoithne theagaisc dá séideann le cealg dhaoine agus a chlisteacht atá siad chun duine a sheoladh ar a aimhleas.grow

Má leanaimid den fhírinne le teann grá, áfach, fásfaimid suas i ngach slí nó go ndéanfar dínn Críost, is ceann orainn. Mar is é a bheir don chorp a bheith fite fuaite ina chéile le cabhair gach nasc dá bhfuil ag fónamh dó, agus, de réir mar a bhíonn gach ball ag gníomhú mar is cuí, fásann an corp iomlán agus téann i méid sa ghrá.

Salm le freagra              Sm 121
Freagra                            Rinne mé gairdeas nuair a dúradh liom: “Rachaimid isteach i dteach an Tiarna.”
1. Rinne mé gairdeas nuair a dúradh liom:
“Rachaimid isteach i dteach an Tiarna.”
Tá ár gcosa ina seasamh cheana féin
jerusalem1i do dhoirse, a Iarúsailéim.                    Freagra

2. Rinneadh cathair Iarúsailéim a thógáil
go dlúth is go daingean.
Is chuici suas a ghabhann na treibheanna,
treibheanna an Tiarna.                           Freagra   

3. D’fhonn is go dtugaidís fianaise do Iosrael,
agus buíochas don Tiarna.
Is ansiúd atá cathaoir an bhreithiúnais,
cathaoir do theaghlach Dháiví.            Freagra

 Sliocht as  an Soiscéal naofa de réir Naomh  Lúcás 13:1-9
Millfear sibh uile mar an gcéanna mura mbíonn aithrí déanta agaibh.

San am sin féin tháinig daoine i láthair á insint d’ Íosa faoi na Gailíligh, a raibh Pioláit tar éis a gcuid fola agus fuil a n-íobairtí a mheascadh ar a chéile. Dúirt sé leo á bhfreagairt: “An é is dóigh libh, agus a rá gur fhulaing siad an méid sin, gur mhó de pheacaigh na Gailíligh sin ná na Gailíligh eile go léir?  Níor mhó, deirim libh; ach mura ndéana sibh aithrí millfear sibh uile mar an gcéanna. Nó an t-ocht nduine dhéag úd ar thit an túr orthu i Siolóam agus gur mharaigh iad, an dóigh libh gur mhó a bhí siad i bhfiacha ná an chuid eile d’áitritheoirí Iarúsailéim?  Níor mhó, deirim libh, ach millfear sibh uile mar an gcéanna mura mbíonn aithrí déanta agaibh.”

Dúirt sé an parabal seo: “Bhí fear ann a raibh crann fígí curtha ina fhíonghort aige, agus tháinig sé ag lorg toraidh air agus ní bhfuair.  Dúirt sé le curadóir na fíniúna: ‘Féach, táim le trí bliana ag teacht ag lorg toraidh ar an gcrann fígí seo agus ní bhfaighim é. Gearr anuas é. Cad chuige a mbeadh an talamh ó rath aige i gcónaí?’ Ach dúirt seisean leis á fhreagairt: ‘A mháistir, lig an bhliain seo leis chomh maith, nó go ndéanfaidh mé romhar ina thimpeall agus aoileach a chur leis,  agus b’fhéidir go dtabharfadh sé toradh uaidh; ach mura dtugann, gearrfaidh tú anuas é feasta.’”

Soiscéal Dé

© An Sagart
Liturgical Readings for: Sunday, 25th October, 2020

30th Sunday of Ordinary Time

FIRST READING                     

A reading from the book of Exodus      22:20-26
If you are harsh with the widow or orphan; my anger will flare against you.

widowsThe lord said to Moses, Tell the sons of Israel this, "You must not molest the stranger or oppress him, for you lived as strangers in the land of Egypt. You must not be harsh with the widow, or with the orphan; if you are harsh with them, they will surely cry out to me, and be sure I shall hear their cry; my anger will flare and I shall kill you with the sword, your own wives will be widows, your own children orphans.

"If you lend money to any of my people, to any poor man among you, you must not play the usurer with him: you must not demand interest from him.

"If you take another's cloak as a pledge, you must give it back to him before sunset. It is all the covering he has; it is the cloak he wraps his body in; what else would he sleep in? If he cries to me, I will listen, for I am full of pity.

The Word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm          Ps 17
Response                                 I love you, Lord, my strength.

1. I love you, Lord, my strength,
my rock, my fortress, my saviour.
My God is the rock where I take refuge;
my shield, my mighty help, my stronghold.
The Lord is worthy of all praise:
when I call I am saved from my foes.           Response

2. Long life to the Lord, my rock!
Praised be the God who saves me.
He has given great victories to his king
and shown his love for his anointed.             Response


A reading from the letter of St Paul to the Thessalonians     1:5-10
You broke with idolatry and became servants of the real, and  you are now waiting for his Son.

ou observed the sort of life we lived when we were with you, which was for your instruction, and you were led to become imitators of us, and of the Lord; and it was with the joy of the Holy Spirit that you took to the gospel, in spite of the great opposition all round you. This has made you the great example to all believers in Macedonia and Achaia since it was from you that the word of the Lord started to spread - and not only throughout Macedonia and Achaia, for the news of your faith in God has spread everywhere. We do not need to tell other people about it: other people tell us how we started the work among you, how you broke with idolatry when you were converted to God and became servants of the real, living God; and how you are now waiting for Jesus, his Son, whom he raised from the dead, to come from heaven to save us from the retribution which is coming.

The Word of the Lord.

Gospel Acclamation         Acts 16: 14
Alleluia, alleluia!
Open our heart, O Lord, to accept the words of your Son.

or                                              Jn 14: 23
Alleluia, alleluia!
If anyone loves me he will keep my word,
and my Father will love him,and we shall come to him.


A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew      22:34-40
'You must love the Lord your God and your neighbour as yourself.

hen the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees they got together and,
to disconcert him, one of them put a question,
'Master, which is the greatest commandment of the Law?'I meant that
Jesus said,
'You must love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind.
This is the greatest and the first commandment.

The second resembles it:
You must love your neighbour as yourself.
On these two commandments hang the whole Law, and the Prophets also.'

The Gospel of the Lord.

Taken from THE JERUSALEM BIBLE, published and copyright 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman and Todd Ltd and Doubleday, a division of Random House Inc, and used by permission of the publishers.
Liturgical Readings for: Sunday, 25th October, 2020

Sliocht as leabhar Exodus      22:20-26
Má dhéanann tú iad a bhuaireamh agus godtagann a nglao chugam, éistfidh mé leo

widowsDúirt an Tiarna le Maois: Abair é seo le clann Isráel: Ná déan éagóir ar dheoraí ná leatrom, mar ba dheoraithe sibh féin i gcríocha na hÉigipte. Ná ciap baintreach ná dílleachta. Má dhéanann tú iad a bhuaireamh agus godtagann a nglao chugam, éistfidh mé leo, éistfead sin.  Adhnfaidh m’fhearg agus maróidh mé sibh leis an gclaíomh, agus fágfar bhur mná gan chéile agus bhur gclann gan athair.

Má thugann tú iasacht airgid d’aon bhochtán de mo phobal le d’ais, ná himir cleas an úsaire air agus ná héiligh ús uaidh.

Má thogann tú riamh brat duine mar gheall tabhair ar ais dó é roimh luí na gréine; óir sin a bhfuil aige d’éadach, sin é an brat a bhíonn faoina chorp aige, agus cad eile atá aige le codladh ann?

Briathar Dé.  

Salm le Freagra          Sm 17
Freagra                           Mo ghrá thú, a Thiarna, mo neart thú.

I. Mo ghrá thú, a Thiarna, mo neart thú,
mo charraig thú, mo dhaingean is mo shlánaitheoir.  Freagra

2. Mo Dhia thú, mo charraig, is mo dhídean;
mo sciath, adharc me shlánaithe, mo dhún.
Glaoim ar an Tiarna dar dleacht moladh
agus déantar mo shaoradh ó mo naimhdé.                    Freagra

3. Go maire an Tiarna! Is é mo charraig é!
Go raibh Dia mo shlánaitheoir á mhóradh.
Thug sé caithréimeanna dá Rí
agus nocht sé a ghrá dá Ungthach.                                  Freagra

DARA LÉACHT           

Sliocht as an céad litir Naomh Pól chuig na Teasalónaigh            1:5-10

A bhráithre, tá a fhios agaibhse mar a thugamar ár saol, fad a bhíomar in bhur measc, ar mhaithe libh. Agus rinne sibhse aithris orainn agus ar an Tiarna, mar d’ainneoin gach anacra ghlac sibh leis an mbriathar uainn le lúcháir an Spioraid Naoimh, sa tslí go raibh sibh mar shampla ag a bhfuil de chreidmhigh sa Mhacadóin agus in Acháia. Mar is uaibhse amach a leath briathar Dé, agus ní sa Mhacadóin agus in Acháia amháin é, mar tá scéal bhur gcreidimh i nDia scaipthe san uile áit, i dtreo nach gá dúinne aon ní a rá faoi. Tá na daoine féin ag cur síos ar an bhfáilte a chuir sibh romhainn agus mar a chas sibh ar Dhia ó na déithe bréige chun dul ag seirbhís don fhíorDhia beo agus chun feitheamh lena Mhac Íosa a theacht ó na flaithis – an Mac a thóg sé ó mhairbh agus atá dár bhfuascailt ón bhfearg atá le teacht.

Briathar Dé.

Alleluia Véarsa                 Gniom 16: 14
Alleluia, alleluia!
Oscail ár gcroí,A Thiarna,
Cun aird a thabhairt ar bhraithra do Mhic


Sliocht as an Soiscéal naofa de réir N. Matha      22:34-40
Gráóidh tú do Thiarna Dia agus gráóidh tú do chomharsa mar thú féin

San am sin nuair a chuala na Fairisínigh nár fhág Íosa focal ag na Sadúcaigh,love-your-neighbour-as-yourself
chruinnigh siad féin le chéile, agus duine acu, a bhí ina dhlíodóir, chuir sé ceist air ag baint trialach as:
“A Mháistir, cén aithne mhór sa dhlí?”
Dúirt sé leis: “‘Gráóidh tú do Thiarna Dia ó do chroí go hiomlán agus
ó d’anam go hiomlán agus ó d’aigne go hiomlán’ – is í sin an aithne mhór agus an phríomhaithne.
Agus is cosúil léise an dara ceann:
‘Gráóidh tú do chomharsa mar thú féin.’
Ag brath ar an dá aithne sin atá an dlí ar fad agus na fáithe.”

Soiscéal Dé.

© An Sagart