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Worldpriest Annual Global Rosary Relay

Date: Friday 28th June 2019
Location: Worldwide

The Pope Video – November 2019

Dialogue and reconciliation in the Middle East

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God did not make death.


There is a line from the Book of Wisdom that reads “God did not make death” (1:13). The Book of Wisdom informs us that death entered the world through the devil and not through God. Death was a child of the envy and malice of Satan, whereas God intended our immortality. We were built forever, and we sense that such is our destiny—we are right to be shocked by death, to dread it, to avoid it, and to grieve it when it comes. We were not meant for death.

But Christ restored our birth-right—he is the just in the hand of God, and his perfect love restored us to eternity. It feels like destruction when someone we love dies, but we are fools to think they are gone from us forever. Wisdom says to look for the day when the people we thought to be dead will shine forth and dart about as sparks through stubble.

Compiled by Deirdre Powell

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

Nov 22 - St Cecilia (3rd century) virgin and martyr patron of music

 Summary: St Cecilia Virgin, Martyr. Though a late fourth century church in Rome was named after her, nothing is known of her life or death. Popular legends were written about her in the late fifth century, and in the sixteenth century she was named the patron of music. Honoured by the Church as a virgin, martyred for the faith, her name is included in Eucharistic Prayer I (The Roman Canon).

Cecilia1St Cecilia is one of the seven women saints, besides Mary, mentioned in the old Roman Canon (First Eucharistic Prayer) of the Mass, showing that these saints were venerated in 5th century Rome. Patrick Duffy tries to unravel what the stories say about St Cecilia and how she became patron of music.

The 5th century Acta of St Cecilia describe her martyrdom
The 5th century Acta of St Cecilia tell of events in the early 3rd century. A Christian Roman maiden from a patrician family wanted to dedicate herself to God as a virgin, but her father had arranged her marriage to a young man named Valerian. After the marriage ceremony, she told Valerian about Jesus, adding that her virginity was protected by an angel. She said he could choose between serving the angel if he respected it and or being punished by the angel if he tried to consummate the marriage.

Perplexed, Valerian went off to find Pope Urban I (222-230), who was living among the poor along the Appian Way, and asked to be baptised. On his return, he found the angel standing beside his wife, and they both received a crown of flowers. Then his brother Tiburtius arrived, was told the story, and also went off to be baptised. The two then devoted themselves to good works and were arrested for burying bodies of martyred Christians. Refusing to recant, they were beheaded outside Rome, together with an official named Maximus, who was converted by their example. Cecilia then buried their bodies.

cecilia2A crowd then gathered at her house, and Pope Urban baptised some 400 people there, one of whom established that house as a church - the detail which probably accounts for the origin of the story. Cecilia was condemned to be suffocated in her bathroom. The attempt failed. Then she was beheaded, but this was bungled, so she lingered for three days. She was buried in the catacomb of San Callisto.

A few more twists to the tale: A church of St Cecilia in Trastevere
Valerian, Tiburtius, and Maximus were actual martyrs, historically identifiable and buried in the catacomb of Praetextatus. Mention is made of an ancient Church of St. Cecilia in Trastevere in the fifth century, where Pope Symmachus held a council in the year 500. In 821 Pope Paschal I wished to restore this church which had fallen into decay, and had their remains moved there to be together with her supposed body, which he had been told in a dream was there and not in San Callisto. He had this enclosed in a cypress coffin in a marble tomb.  Pope Paschal founded a monastery in honour of these saints, near the Church of St. Cecilia, that the monks might perform the office day and night.

Restoration of 1595
Another restoration under Cardinal Sfondrati in 1595 led to their tombs being opened. Cecilia's body was found to be incorrupt, and remained so for some days, long enough for a graphic altar sculpture of St. Cecilia to be made by the late-Renaissance sculptor Stefano Maderno (1600), before contact with the air caused the body to disintegrate. It was seen by many people, and full descriptions were written of it by the reputable historian Cardinal Baronius. The statue depicts evidence of decapitation, thus helping to confirm the identity of the saint. Incorrupt bodies are not a feature of earlier stories of saints, and no mention was made of it in 821; by the 16th century they had become quite "fashionable", and this discovery was seen as a great coup for the Church of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere.

How she came to be patron saint of music and musicians?
Up to this stage there had been no association between Cecilia and music. Till then, those regarded as the patron saints of music were: Pope St Gregory I, credited with originating the style of liturgical singing known as Gregorian chant; from the Old Testament, King David, a fabled harpist and a composer of psalm tunes and texts and Job, who in Job 30:31 says: ''My harp is turned to mourning, my flute to the sound of weepers.''

cecilia musicThe Acta of St Cecilia telling how she converted her husband Valerian, her brother-in-law Tiburtius and the Roman official Maximus and her death set out the basis for her sainthood (canonisation). How she became the patroness of music and musicians can be traced to a misunderstanding of the account of Cecilia's prayer during her wedding as reported in the Acta. What the Acta say is: "So at the ceremony, while musical instruments played around her, she prayed that she might remain as pure in body as she was in spirit". Her prayers were answered when she converted Valerian to Christianity.

But by the 15th century the Vespers antiphon for her feast day highlighted the words: Cantantibus organis, Caecilia Domino leaving out the words in corde suo (in her heart) and the content of her prayer from the Acta account of the wedding. This led to an interpretation of Cecilia as actually herself singing and playing the organ. By Handel's time, Cecilia, as well as being a virtuoso performer, had become a great appreciator of music!

Enormous popularity
Soon Cecilia is depicted in paintings as singing and playing the organ and is declared as the patron of music by musicians’ guilds. This led to an extraordinary growth in her popularity, especially when Palestrina helped set up the Accademia di Santa Cecilia  in Rome in 1584. She was even said to have invented the organ.

A total fabrication?
There are a many twists and turns to the story of Cecilia as patroness of music. There are many difficulties in writing off the story of Cecilia as a total fabrication, not least of them is the need for the ideals that myths express and that serve to guide and motivate us to high achievements. The Italians say: Se non è vero, è ben trovato. "If it's not true, it's still a good story".

St Cecilia was buried in the Catecombs of St Calistas.St Cecilia was first buried in the Catecombs of St Calistas.

See also
Liturgical Readings for: Friday, 22nd November, 2019

A reading from the first book of  Maccabees          4:36-37. 52-59
They celebrated the dedication of the altar, joyfully offering holocausts

[caption id="attachment_36410" align="alignleft" width="277"]Judas dedicates the altar.                  Judas dedicates the altar.[/caption]

Judas and his brothers said, 'Now that our enemies have been defeated, let us go up to purify the sanctuary and dedicate it.' So they marshalled the whole army, and went up to Mount Zion.

On the twenty-fifth of the ninth month, Chislev, in the year one hundred and forty-eight, they rose at dawn and offered a lawful sacrifice on the new altar of holocausts which they had made. The altar was dedicated, to the sound of zithers, harps and cymbals, at the same time of year and on the same day on which the pagans had originally profaned it. The whole people fell prostrate in adoration, praising to the skies him who had made them so successful. For eight days they celebrated the dedication of the altar, joyfully offering holocausts, communion sacrifices and thanksgivings. They ornamented the front of the Temple with crowns and bosses of gold, repaired the gates and the storerooms and fitted them with doors. There was no end to the rejoicing among the people, and the reproach of the pagans was lifted from them. Judas, with his brothers and the whole assembly of Israel, made it a law that the days of the dedication of the altar should be celebrated yearly at the proper season, for eight days beginning on the twenty-fifth of the month Chislev, with rejoicing and gladness.

The Word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm          1Chron 29
Response                               We praise your glorious name, O Lord.

I. Blessed are you, O Lord,
the God of Israel our father,
for ever, for ages unending.                             Response

2. Yours, Lord, are greatness and power,
and splendour, triumph and glory.
All is yours, in heaven and on earth.              Response

3. Yours, O Lord, is the kingdom,
you are supreme over all.
Both honour and riches come from you.       Response

4. You are the ruler of all,
from your hand come strength and power,
from your hand come greatness and might. Response

Gospel  Acclamation        2 Tim 1: 10
Alleluia, alleluia!
Our saviour Christ Jesus abolished death,
and he has proclaimed life and immortality through the Good News.

Or                                               Jn 10: 27 
Alleluia, alleluia!
The sheep that belong to me listen to my voice, says the lord,
I know them and they follow me.


A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke       19:45-48
You have turned the house of God into a robbers' den.

Jesus and the TempleJesus went into the Temple and began driving out those who were selling. 'According to scripture,' he said 'my house will be a house of prayer. But you have turned it into a robbers' den.'

He taught in the Temple every day. The chief priests and the scribes, with the support of the leading citizens, tried to do away with him, but they did not see how they could carry this out because the people as a whole hung on his words.

The Gospel of the Lord.


Gospel Reflection       Friday,           Thirty Third Week in Ordinary Time       Luke 19:45-48

According to our first reading, it was on the twenty-fifth day of the Jewish month of Chislev that Judas Maccabeus and his associates purified the Temple in Jerusalem, which had become contaminated by pagan images and practices. This happened a little over 150 years before the birth of Jesus. The 25th of Chislev remains an important feastday for Jews today. It is usually celebrated in November/December, the Feast of the Rededication of the Temple. In the gospel reading Jesus is also portrayed as purifying the Temple in Jerusalem. On this occasion it wasn’t pagans, non-Jews, who were responsible for the unsatisfactory state of the Temple, but other Jews, in particular the priests who were responsible for the Temple. They had allowed people to sell goods in one of the courts of the Temple, the court reserved for non-Jews. As a result, non-Jews could not pray in the area reserved for them. The Temple was meant to be a house of prayer for Jews and non-Jews. Jesus saw that the Temple was not conducting its business in accordance with God’s purpose. It had become, according to Jesus, a ‘robber’s den’ rather than a ‘house of prayer’. According to Luke, Jesus had referred to the Temple, when a twelve-year-old, as ‘my Father’s house’. Jesus, the Son of God, acted authoritatively to purify and renew his Father’s house. Every institution stands in need of continuing renewal, including religious institutions, of which the most sacred in Jesus’ day was the Temple in Jerusalem. The Church, likewise, is always in need of reform. We who comprise the Church are always in need of the Lord’s reforming and renewing zeal. It is a zeal that is born of love, because the Lord wants us to become all that God desires for us. Each day we try to open ourselves anew to the Lord’s continuing work of renewal in our lives.

The scripture readings are taken from The Jerusalem Bible, published by Darton, Longman and Todd Ltd and used with the permission of the publishers. The Gospel reflection comes from WEEKDAY REFLECTIONS 2018-19: To know the love of Christ by Martin Hogan published by  The Messenger c/f
Liturgical Readings for: Friday, 22nd November, 2019
CÉAD LÉACHT           

Sliocht as an chéad leabhar Macabéach        4:36-37. 52-59
Cheiliúir siad coisreacan na haltóra ar feadh ocht lá agus iad faoi lúcháir ag ofráil íobairtí dóite .

[caption id="attachment_36410" align="alignleft" width="277"]. .[/caption]

Dúirt Iúdás agus a dheartháireacha: “Tá buaite ar ár naimhde anois; téimis suas chun an sanctóir a ghlanadh agus a choisreacan.” Chruinnigh siad an t-arm ar fad, dá bhrí sin, agus chuaigh siad suas go Cnoc Shíón.

Ar an gcúigiú lá fichead den naoú mí, Cisléu is é sin, sa bhliain céad daichead a hocht, d’éirigh siad le fáinne an lae agus d’ofráil siad íobairt, de réir an dlí, ar altóir nua na n-íobairtí dóite a bhí tógtha acu. Coisriceadh an altóir le canadh laoi agus le ceol na dtéad, na gcláirseach agus na gciombal i dtrátha an ama chéanna den bhliain agus i gcothrom an lae a ndearna na págánaigh í a thruailliú ar dtús. Shléacht an pobal go léir go talamh ag adhradh agus ag ardmholadh Neimhe, an té a thug a leithéid de bhua dóibh. Cheiliúir siad coisreacan na haltóra ar feadh ocht lá agus iad faoi lúcháir ag ofráil íobairtí dóite agus d’íobair siad íobairt fhuascailte agus bhuíochais. Mhaisigh said aghaidh an Teampaill le corónacha agus le cnapáin óir; chóirigh siad na geataí agus na stórais agus chuir doirse orthu. Ní raibh teorainn le gairdeas an phobail agus scuabadh aithis na bpágánach chun siúil. Rinne Iúdás, mar aon lena dheartháireacha agus le comhthionól iomlán Iosrael, dlí go ndéanfaí laethanta choisreacan na haltora a cheiliúradh le gliondar is gairdeas an tráth ceart de gach bliain ar feadh ocht lá ag tosú ar an gcúigiú lá fichead de mhí Chisléu.

Briathar Dé.

Salm le Freagra        1 Chroin 29
Freagra :                       Molaimid glóir d’ainm, a Thiarna

1. “Gura beannaithe thú, a Thiarna,
Dia Iosrael ár sinsear,
go brách na breithe.                                                  Freagra

2. Is leatsa, a Thiarna, an mhéid,
an chumhacht, an ghlóir, an bua, agus an mhórgacht;
óir is leatsa a bhfuil ar neamh agus ar talamh.    Freagra

3. Is leatsa an flaitheas, a Thiarna:
is tusa an bhuaic go hard os cionn cách.
Is uaitse saibhreas agus onóir.                               Freagra

4. Is tú a rialaíonn gach ní;
tá neart agus cumhacht i do láimh;
ar do láimhse atá méid agus cumas a thabhairt do chách.

Jesus and the TempleSOISCÉAL                     

Sliocht as Soiscéal naofa de réir Naomh Lúcás     19:45-48
Tá uaimh robálaithe déanta agaibhse de.”

Ansin, ar dhul isteach sa Teampall d’ Íosa, thosaigh sé ag tiomáint na ndíoltóirí amach, ag rá leo: “Tá scríofa: ‘Beidh mo theach ina theach urnaithe’; ach tá uaimh robálaithe déanta agaibhse de.”

Bhíodh sé ag teagasc gach lá sa Teampall. Bhí uachtaráin na sagart agus na scríobhaithe ag iarraidh é a mhilleadh, agus cinn an phobail chomh maith; ach ní raibh a fhios acu cad a dhéanfaidís, óir bhí an pobal uile ar bís ag éisteacht leis.

Soiscéal Dé.

© An Sagart
Liturgical Readings for: Sunday, 24th November, 2019

Our Lord Jesus Christ, Universal King
- 34th and Final Sunday in Ordinary time Year C



A reading from the second book of the Prophet Samuel       5:1-3
They anointed David King of Israel.

ll the tribes of Israel then came to David at Hebron.'Look' they said 'we are David anointedyour own flesh and blood. In days past when Saul was our king, it was you who led Israel in all their exploits; and the Lord said to you, "You are the man who shall be shepherd of my people Israel, you shall be the leader of Israel".'
So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David made a pact with them at Hebron in the presence of the Lord, and they anointed David king of Israel.'''

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, O 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


A reading from the first letter of St Paul to the Colossions        1:12-20
He has created a place for us in the kingdom of the Son that he loves.

We give thanks to the Father who has made it possible for you to join the saints and with them to inherit the light. Because that is what he has done: he has taken us out of the power of darkness and created a place for us in the kingdom of the Son that he loves, and in him we gain our freedom, the forgiveness of our sins.

He is the image of the unseen God
and the first-born of all creation,
for in him were created
all things in heaven and on earth:
everything visible and everything invisible,
Thrones, Dominations, Sovereignties, Powers –
all things were created through him and for him. Jesus is Lord
Before anything was created, he existed,
and he holds all things in unity.
Now the Church is his body,
he is its head.
As he is the Beginning,
he was first to be born from the dead,
so that he should be first in every way;
because God wanted all perfection
to be found in him and all things
to be reconciled through him and for him,
everything in heaven and everything on earth,
when he made peace by his death on the cross.

The Word of the Lord

Gospel Acclamation      Mt 24:42
Alleluia, alleluia!
Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessings on the coming kingdom of our father David!


A reading from the Gospel according to Luke       23:35-43
Lord remember me when you come into your kingdom.

Christ crucifiedThe people stayed there watching him. As for the leaders, they jeered at him. 'He saved others,' they said 'let him save himself if he is the Christ of God, the Chosen One.' The soldiers mocked him too, and when they approached to offer vinegar they said, 'If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself'. Above him there was an inscription: 'This is the King of the Jews'.

One of the criminals hanging there abused him. 'Are you not the Christ?' he said. 'Save yourself and us as well.' But the other spoke up and rebuked him. 'Have you no fear of God at all?' he said. 'You got the same sentence as he did, but in our case we deserved it: we are paying for what we did. But this man has done nothing wrong. Jesus,' he said 'remember me when you come into your kingdom.' 'Indeed, I promise you,' he replied 'today you will be with me in paradise.'

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, 24th November, 2019




Sliocht as an dara leabhar Samuél        5:1-3
Rinne siad DáivI a ungadh ma rI ar Isráél.

Tháinig treibheanna Iosrael go léir chuig Dáiví ansin i Heabrón.David anointed
“Féach,” ar siad, “sinne do mhuintir ó dhúchas feola agus smeara. San am atá thart nuair a bhí Sól ina rí orainn, is tusa a bhí mar thaoiseach ar Iosrael ina gcuid eachtraí go léir; agus dúirt an Tiarna leat: ‘Is tusa a bheidh i d’aoire ar mo phobal Iosrael, is tusa a bheidh mar thaoiseach ar Iosrael.’” Tháinig seanóirí Iosrael go léir chuig an rí ag Heabrón, agus rinne Dáiví rí conradh leo ag Heabrón i bhfianaise an Tiarna agus rinne siad Dáiví a ungadh ina rí ar Iosrael.

Briathar Dé.

Salm le Freagra         Sm 121
Freagra                         Rinne mé gairdeas nuair a dúradh liom: 'Téimis i dteach an Tiarna.'

I. Rinne mé gairdeas nuair a dúradh liom: 
  'Téimis i dteach an Tiarna.'
   Tá ár gcosa ina seasamh cheana féin
    i do dhoirse, a Iarúsailéim.                       Freagra

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

3. D'fhonn buíochas a ghabháil le hainm an Tiarna
    de réir dhlí chlann Israáél.
    Is ansiúd atá cathaoir bhreithiúnais
    theaghlach Dháiví.                                      Freagra

DARA LÉACHT          

Sliocht as litir Naomh Pól chuig Colosaigh       1:12-20
 Chruthaigh Sé áit dúinn  i ríocht a mhic mhuirnigh.

A bhráithre, gabhaimid buíochais go lúcháireach leis an Athair a dheonaigh daoibh a bheith páirteach in oidhreacht an phobail naofa sa solas agus a d’fhuascail sinn ó chumhacht an dorchadais agus chruthaigh Sé áit dúinn i ríocht a mhic mhuirnigh. Is tríd an Mac sin atá ár bhfuascailt le fáil, is é sin, maithiúnas na bpeacaí.

Is íomhá den Dia dofheicthe é
agus céadghin gach dúile cruthaithe
mar is trídsean a cruthaíodh
a bhfuil ar neamh agus ar talamh
bídís sofheicthe nó dofheicthe,
idir Thróin agus Thiarnais
idir Phrionsachtaí agus Chumhachtaí.
Jesus is LordIs trídsean agus dósan a cruthaíodh an t-iomlán.
Tá tosach aige orthu uile
agus is ann a choinnítear ar bun iad.
Is é ceann an choirp é,
ceann na hEaglaise.
Is é an tús é,
an chéadghin ó mhairbh
i dtreo go mbeadh an tosach aige ar gach slí.
Mar is ann ab áil
le lánmhaireacht iomlán Dé a bheith ina cónaí,
agus is trídsean ab áil leis
gach a bhfuil ar neamh agus ar talamh
a thabhairt chun athmhuintearais leis féin,
agus síocháin a dhéanamh leo trí fhuil a chroise.

Briathar Dé.

Alleluia Véarsa            Mc 11: 10 
Alleluia, alleluia!
Is beannaithe an té atá ag teacht in ainm an Tiarna! Is beannaithe ag teacht í, Ríocht ár nAthar, Daivi!


Sliocht as Soiscéal naofa de réir Naomh Lúcás        23:35-43
A Thiarna, cuimhnigh ormsa nuair a thiocfaidh tú faoi réim do riochta.

Christ crucifiedSan am sin d’fhan an pobal ansiúd ag breathnú ar Íosa. Bhí na cinn urra féin ag dranngháire: “Shaor sé daoine eile,” deiridís, “saoradh sé é féin, más é Críost Dé, an té atá tofa.” Agus rinne na saighdiúirí freisin fonóid faoi; ag teacht ag tabhairt fínéagair chuige deiridís: “Más tú Rí na nGiúdach, saor thú féin!” Agus fós, bhí scríbhinn os a chionn i nGréigis, i Laidin, agus in Eabhrais: “Rí na nGiúdach é seo.”

Duine de na coirpigh a bhí arna gcrochadh, bhí sé á dhiamhaslú á rá: “Nach tú an Críost? Saor tú féin agus sinne.” Ach thug an duine eile casaoid dó agus dúirt: “An ea nach bhfuil eagla Dé ort, agus tusa faoin daorbhreith chéanna? Agus maidir linne, is le ceart é: tá díol ár mbeart féin á thabhairt orainn ach ní dhearna sé seo rud ar bith as an tslí.” Agus dúirt: “A Íosa, cuimhnigh ormsa nuair a thiocfaidh tú faoi réim do ríochta!” Agus dúirt seisean leis: “Deirim leat go fírinneach, beidh tú in éineacht liom inniu i bparthas.”

Soiscéal Dé

© An Sagart