Relics of Saint Padre Pio - St Peter's Cathedral Belfast

DATE: 6th - 8th November
LOCATION: Belfast, St Peter's Cathedral

Visit the Relics of Saint Padre Pio in Saint Peters Cathedral, Belfast.
Sunday 6th, Monday 7th and Tuesday 8th November 2022


Pope Francis releases his prayer intention for November, inviting everyone to pray for the millions of children who are suffering around the world, especially for those who are homeless, orphans, and victims of war.


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The Joy of the Gospel – Reflection 4


Celebration of the Life and Legacy of St. Colmcille/Columba


The Joy of the Gospel – April 29th

Pictorial Thought for Today

Pictorial Thought for Today

Nov 30 St Andrew, Apostle (2)

Summary:   St Andrew, apostle. According to the New Testament, Andrew was an apostle of Jesus and the brother of Simon Peter. He is referred to in the Orthodox tradition as the 'First-Called.' According to Orthodox tradition, St Andrew did an immense amount of missionary work around the Black Sea area and the apostolic successor to Saint Andrew is the Patriarch of Constantinople. He is also the Patron of Scotland.

Andrew becomes Jesus' first disciple

According to the New Testament, Andrew, whose Greek name means “manly” or “strong”, was born in the village of Bethsaida on the Sea of Galilee during the early first century. Like his brother Simon , Andrew was also a fisherman. He became a disciple of St. John the Baptist. One day, John the Baptist, pointing to Jesus proclaimed, "Behold, the Lamb of God!" Andrew decided to follow Jesus.

How the gospels tell it

The Gospel of John (Chapter 1.40f ) the writer introduces Andrew as bringing his brother Simon to listen to Jesus. In the Gospel of Matthew (Chapter 4:18f,) Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee he saw Andrew and Simon Peter fishing.  Jesus invited them to follow him and  become disciples and "fishers of men."

Andrew, a very close disciple of Jesus
Later on in the gospels, Mark  (Chapter 13) has Andrew asking Jesus on the Mount of Olives for signs of the earth’s end.  This occasioned Jesus' first eschatological discourse. He was also the one who told Jesus about the boy with the loaves and fishes, (C/f John Chapter 6:8.) and Jesus miraculously multiplied the food to feed the vast crowd. When Philip wanted to speak to Jesus about Greeks following him, it was Andrew whom he spoke to first before approaching Jesus.

Andrew and Christian Traditions
As per Christian tradition, after the Ascension, Andrew went on to preach the Good News around the shores of the Black Sea and continued his missionary work throughout what is now Greece and Turkey. He was martyred by crucifixion bound, rather than nailed to a cross, as is described in the 'Acts' of Andrew. He was crucified on a cross  known as "crux decussata," - an X-shaped cross.  Today this is commonly referred to as "St. Andrew's Cross." It is believed Andrew requested to be crucified this way, because he deemed himself "unworthy to be crucified on the same type of cross as Jesus." He died between 60-70 CE, at Patras, Achaia [Greece].
Early Byzantine tradition calls Andrew 'protokletos', “the first called.”

St Andrew's relics 

His remains were originally preserved at Patras. However, some believe St. Regulus who was a monk there received a vision telling him to hide some of Andrew's bones. Shortly after Regulus' dream, many of Andrew's relics were transferred to Constantinople by order of Roman emperor Constantius II around 357. Regulus later received orders in another dream telling him to take the bones "to the ends of the earth." He was to build a shrine for them wherever he was  shipwrecked. Finally Regulus landed on the coat of Fife, Scotland.

More recently

In September 1964, Pope Paul VI had all of St. Andrew's relics that ended up in Vatican City sent back to Patras. where many of Andrew's relics including the cross on which he was martyred. They are kept in the Church of St. Andrew in Patras.

On June 29th, 2019, giving fragments of St. Peter’s bones to the head of the Orthodox church founded by St Andrew, Pope Francis said he was doing this as a reminder and encouragement of the journey toward Christian unity 'This gesture is intended, Pope Francis said, as a confirmation of the journey that our Churches have made in drawing closer to one another.'

Saint Andrew ,other countries and Scotland
St. Andrew is venerated in Georgia, Greece and Turkey as the first preacher of Christianity in those territories and in Cyprus.  He is the patron saint to several countries and cities including: Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Patras and Scotland.
Andrew has been celebrated in Scotland for over a thousand years, with feasts being held in his honour as far back as the year 1000 AD. However, it wasn’t until 1320, when Scotland’s independence was declared with the signing of The Declaration of Arbroath, that he officially became Scotland’s patron saint. The flag of Scotland, the St Andrew’s Cross, was chosen in honour of him.  The ancient town of St Andrews was named due to its claim of being the final resting place of St Andrew.
Liturgical Readings for: Wednesday, 30th November, 2022

 11- 30- Feast of  St Andrew, Apostle

General Theme: Andrew was a disciple of John the Baptist, and brother of Simon Peter. He introduced Simon to Jesus. All three of them were crucified for the faith at different days.


A reading from the letter of St Paul to the Romans        10:9-18
Theme: Faith comes from what is preached, and what is preached comes from the word of Christ.

preachingIf your lips confess that Jesus is Lord and if you believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, then you will be saved. By believing from the heart you are made righteous; by confessing with your lips you are saved. When scripture says: those who believe in him will have no cause for shame, it makes no distinction between Jew and Greek: all belong to the same Lord who is rich enough, however many ask his help, for everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.

But they will not ask his help unless they believe in him, and they will not believe in him unless
they have heard of him, and they will not hear of him unless they get a preacher,
and they will never have a preacher unless one is sent, but as scripture says:
'the footsteps of those who bring good news are a welcome sound'.
Not everyone, of course, listens to the Good News.
As Isaiah says:
'Lord, how many believed what we proclaimed?'
So faith comes from what is preached, and what is preached comes from the word of Christ.'

Let me put the question:
Is it possible that they did not hear? Indeed they did in the words of the psalm,
their voice has gone out through all the earth, and their message to the ends of the world.

The Word of the Lord.               Thanks be to God.

Responsorial Psalm             Ps  18  
Response                                   Their word goes forth through all the earth.
Or                                               Alleluia!

1. The heavens proclaim the glory of God
and the firmament shows forth the work of his hands.
Day unto day takes up the story
and night unto night makes known the message.  Response

2. No speech, no word, no voice is heard
yet their span extends through all the earth,
their words to the utmost bounds of the world.    Response

Gospel Acclamation         Lk 1: 28
Alleluia,         Alleluia!
Follow me , says the Lord, and I will make you fishers of men.


A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew       4:18-22
Theme: At once, leaving their nets, they followed him.

call by JesusAs Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee he saw two brothers, Simon, who was called Peter, and his brother Andrew;
they were making a cast in the lake with their net, for they were fishermen.
And he said to them,
'Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.'
And they left their nets at once and followed him.

Going on from there he saw another pair of brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John; they were in their boat with their father Zebedee, mending their nets, and he called them.
At once, leaving the boat and their father, they followed him.

The Gospel of the Lord.        Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.


Scripture Reflection       30th  Nov. Saint Andrew, Apostle     Matthew 4:18-22

Today’s gospel reading suggests that there were at least two sets of brothers among Jesus’ closest followers, Simon Peter and his brother, Andrew, whose feast we celebrate today, and James and his brother John. We are fortunate if members of our family share our faith and support it. However that is not often the case in families. Sometimes a family member has to plough a lonely furrow as a person of faith within a family. Jesus recognized that this was likely to happen when he declared that his coming would bring division within families, with some family members becoming his disciples and other family members proving hostile as a result.

Within the family of Peter and Andrew, even though we think of Peter as the leading disciple of Jesus, according to the gospel of John, it was Andrew who brought Peter to Jesus, having first come to faith in Jesus himself. The portrayal of Andrew in the gospel of John shows how influential we can be in bringing others to faith, including members of our own family who may not seem initially well disposed to faith. If we have a living relationship with the Lord, and if we are seeking to grow in that relationship in response to the Lord’s call, the Lord can work powerfully through us in ways that will surprise us. The primary way the Lord brings people to faith in him is through other people of faith. In the first reading, Saint Paul says that people will not come to faith in Jesus unless they have heard of him and they will not hear of him unless they get a preacher. We are all called to be preachers of the Lord through the living out of our faith in him. Then, the Lord will work through us, as he worked through Andrew, to bring others to him.


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 Scripture Reflection is available with our thanks from Reflections on the Weekday Readings 2022-2023: Your word is a lamp for my feet and light for my path by Martin Hogan and published by Messenger Publications  c/f www.messenger.ie/bookstore

Liturgical Readings for: Wednesday, 30th November, 2022

Sliocht as Litir Naomh Pól chuig na Rómhánaigh      10:9-18
Is ó theagasc a thagann an creideamh, mar sin, agus is trí sheanmóireacht Chríost a thagann an teagasc féin.

Jesus preaching2
Má adhmhaíonn tú ó do bhéal gurb é Íosa an Tiarna agus má chreideann tú ó do chroí gur thóg Dia ó mhairbh é, slánófar thú. Is sa chroí a bhíonn an creideamh a fhíréanaíonn agus sa bhéal a bhíonn an admháil a shlánaíonn.

Agus deir an scrioptúr:
Gach aon duine a chreideann ann ní bheidh díoma air.”
Mar níl aon dealú idir Giúdach agus Gréagach mar is é an t-aon Tiarna amháin atá orthu go léir agus caitheann sé go flaithiúil lena nglaonn air,
mar gach aon duine a ghlaofaidh ar ainm an Tiarna, slánófar é.”

Ach conas a ghlaofaidís ar an té nár chreid siad ann? Agus conas a chreidfidís sa té nár chuala siad trácht air? Agus conas a chloisfidís trácht air gan duine á fhógairt dóibh? Agus conas a dhéanfadh daoine é a fhógairt mura gcuirtear amach iad chuige sin?
Mar atá scríofa:
Nach álainn iad cosa lucht fógartha an dea-scéil.”
Ach ní gach aon duine a ghéill don dea-scéal, de réir mar a deir Íseáia: “A Thiarna, cé a chreid ár dteagasc?” Is ó theagasc a thagann an creideamh, mar sin, agus is trí sheanmóireacht Chríost a thagann an teagasc féin.

Ach ceist agam: An é nár chuala siad an scéala? Chuala go deimhin mar
chuaigh a nglór amach ar fud an domhain go léir agus a mbriathra go himill na cruinne.”

Briathar an Tiarna             Buíochas le Dia

Psalm le Freagra            Sm 18
Freagra                             Gabhann a bhfocail i ngach uile thír.  

Fógraíonn na spéartha glóir Dé
agus foilsíonn an fhirmimint saothar a lámh.
Insíonn na laethanta an scéal dá chéile
agus tugann na hoícheannta an t-eolas dá chéile.      Freagra

2. Ní chluintear caint ná canúint ná briathar
cé go ngabhann a nglór i ngach uile thír
agus a bhfocail go críocha imchiana na cruinne.        Freagra

Alleluia Véarsa          Mth 4: 19 
Alleluia!  Alleluia!
Tagaigí i mo dhiaidh, a deir an Tiarna agus déanfaidh mé iascairí ar dhaoine díbh.


Go raibh an Tiarna libh.                        Agus le do spiorad féin
Sliocht as an Soiscéal naofa de réir Naomh Mhatha            4:18-22             Glóir duit, a Thiarna.
D’fhág siad na líonta láithreach agus lean siad é.

call by JesusSan am sin nuair a bhí Íosa ag siúl dó cois farraige na Gailíle, chonaic sé beirt dearthár, Síomón ar a dtugtar Peadar agus Aindrias a dheartháir, ag caitheamh eangacha san fharraige, mar iascairí a bhí iontu. Labhair sé leo:
Tagaigí i mo dhiaidh, agus déanfaidh mé iascairí ar dhaoine díbh.”
D’fhág siad na líonta láithreach agus lean siad é.

Bhuail sé ar aghaidh, agus chonaic sé beirt dearthár eile, Séamas mac Zeibidé agus Eoin a dheartháir: bhí siad sa bhád in éineacht lena n-athair, Zeibidé, ag cóiriú a gcuid líonta; agus ghlaoigh sé orthu. D’fhág siad an bád agus a n-athair láithreach agus lean siad é.

Soiscéal an Tiarna.              Moladh duit, a Chriost

© An Sagart
Liturgical Readings for: Sunday, 4th December, 2022

  - 4-12-2022-
Second Sunday of Advent

General theme: John the Baptist is a prophetic voice for all ages: his message speaks to us today, for conversion is always part of the Christian way of living. Conversion to each other is called for by St Paul, so that we can be tolerant of each other, united in mind and heart.


A reading from the book of the Prophet Isaiah          11:1-10
Theme: .He judges the wretched with integrity.

A shoot springs from the stock of Jesse,  a scion thrusts from his roots:
on him the spirit of the Lord rests,  a spirit of wisdom and insight,  a spirit of counsel and power,
a spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord. (The fear of the Lord is his breath.)
He does not judge by appearances, last judgementhe gives no verdict on hearsay, but judges the wretched with integrity,
and with equity gives a verdict for the poor of the land.
His word is a rod that strikes the ruthless,
his sentences bring death to the wicked.

Integrity is the loincloth round his waist,
faithfulness the belt about his hips.

The wolf lives with the lamb,
the panther lies down with the kid,
calf and lion cub feed together
with a little boy to lead them.
The cow and the bear make friends,
their young lie down together.
The lion eats straw like the ox.
The infant plays over the cobra's hole;
into the viper's lair the young child puts his hand.
They do no hurt, no harm, on all my holy mountain,
for the country is filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the waters swell the sea.

That day, the root of Jesse shall stand as a signal to the peoples.
It will be sought out by the nations and its home will be glorious.

The Word of the Lord    Thanks be to God.

Responsorial Psalm        Ps 71:1
Response                            In his days justice shall flourish and peace till the moon fails.

1. O God, give your judgement to the king,
to a king's son your justice,
that he may judge your people in justice
and your poor in right judgement.             Response

2. In his days justice shall flourish
and peace till the moon fails.
He shall rule from sea to sea,
from the Great River to earth's bounds.   Response

3. For he shall save the poor when they cry
and the needy who are helpless.
He will have pity on the weak
and save the lives of the poor.                     Response

4. May his name be blessed for ever
and endure like the sun.
Every tribe shall be blessed in him,
all nations bless his name.                           Response


A reading from the first letter of St Paul to the Romans         15:4-9
Theme: Christ is the Saviour of all people.

Everything that was written long ago in the scriptures was meant to teach us something about hope from the examples scripture gives of how people who did not give up were helped by God. And may he who helps us when we refuse to give up, help you all to be tolerant with each other, following the example of Christ Jesus, so that united in mind and voice you may give glory to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. creation

It can only be to God's glory, then, for you to treat each other in the same friendly way as Christ treated you. The reason Christ became the servant of circumcised Jews was not only so that God could faithfully carry out the promises made to the patriarchs, it was also to get the pagans to give glory to God for his mercy, as scripture says in one place: For this I shall praise you among the pagans and sing to your name.

The Word of the Lord            Thanks be to God.

Gospel  Acclamation        Lk 3:4.6
Alleluia, Alleluia!
Prepare a way for the Lord, make his paths straight.. and all mankind shall see the salvation of God


The Lord be with you.                    And with your spirit
A reading from the Gospel according to Matthew    3:1-12        Glory to you, O Lord
Theme: Repent for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand.

John the BIn due course John the Baptist appeared; he preached in the wilderness of Judaea and this was his message:
'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand'.
This was the man the prophet Isaiah spoke of when he said:

 A voice cries in the wilderness:
Prepare a way for the Lord,
make his paths straight.

This man John wore a garment made of camel-hair with a leather belt round his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then Jerusalem and all Judaea and the whole Jordan district made their way to him, and as they were baptised by him in the river Jordan they confessed their sins. But when he saw a number of Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism he said to them,
'Brood of vipers, who warned you to fly from the retribution that is coming? But if you are repentant, produce the appropriate fruit, and do not presume to tell yourselves, "We have Abraham for our father", because, I tell you, God can raise children for Abraham from these stones. Even now the axe is laid to the roots of the trees, so that any tree which fails to produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown on the fire.

I baptise you in water for repentance, but the one who follows me is more powerful than I am, and I am not fit to carry his sandals;
he will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing-fan is in his hand; he will clear his threshing-floor and gather his wheat into the barn; but the chaff he will burn in a fire that will never go out.'

The Gospel of the Lord                Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

The Scripture Readings are taken from The Jerusalem Bible, 1966/7/8 published 1966/7/8 by Darton, Longman and Todd Ltd and used with the permission of the publishers.  http://dltbooks.com/

For homily resources for this Sunday's Gospel click here:  https://www.catholicireland.net/sunday-homily/

Liturgical Readings for: Sunday, 4th December, 2022



Sliocht as Leabhar Íseáia, Faidh      Is 11:1-10
Tugann sé breithiúnas cothrom i leith na ndearóile.

Tá bachlóg ag eascar as bun chrann Ieise,
agus gas ag teacht óna fhréamh;
tá spiorad an Tiarna ag lonnú air,
spiorad na heagna agus na tuisceana,
spiorad na comhairle agus na cumhachta,
spiorad an eolais agus eagla an Tiarna.
(In eagla an Tiarna is ea tá a dhúil.)
Ní thugann sé breith de réir na cosúlachta,
ná ní chuireann tuairim de ar scéal scéil.
Ach déanann sé cóir agus ceart do na dealbha
agus tugann breithiúnas cothrom i leith dearóile na tíre.last judgement
Bata is ea a bhriathar a bhuaileann an t-anduine,
agus gaoth an fhocail uaidh, maraíonn sé an t-urchóideach.

Is í an chóir bréid cheangail a choime,
agus tá an dea-rún ina chrios ar a chorróga.

Tá an mac tíre ina chónaí leis an uan,
an pantar sínte le taobh an mheannáin ghabhair;
tá an gamhain agus an coileán leoin ar marthain in éineacht
agus gasúr óg á mbuachailleacht.
Tá an bhó agus an béar ag snaidhmeadh caradais,
agus a gceanna beaga in aon ál le chéile;
tá an leon ag ithe cocháin ar nós na mart.
Tá an leanbh cíche ag súgradh faoi phrochóg an chobra,
ar phluais na nathrach leagann an naíonán a lámh.
Díth ná dochar ní dhéantar níos mó
ar fud mo shléibhe bheannaithe go léir,
óir tá an talamh lán le heolas ar an Tiama
mar a líonann an fharraige leis an lán mara.

Sa lá sin, beidh beangán ó fhréamh Ieise
ina sheasamh mar chomhartha do na ciníocha.
Beidh na náisiúin ag dul ina mhuinín
agus beidh a áit chónaithe faoi mhaise agus faoi ghlóir.

Briathar Dé.                    Buíochas le Dia

Salm le Freagra         Sm 71
Freagra                         Bláthóidh síocháin agus fhíréantacht lena linn nó go meathfaidh an ghealach.

1. Tabhair do bhreithiúnas, a Dhia, don rí
agus d'fhíréantacht do mhac an rí.
Go dtuga sé ceartbhreithiúnas ar a
agus cothrom do na bochta.                      Freagra

2. Bláthóidh síocháin agus fhíréantacht lena
nó go meathfaidh an ghealach.
Beidh a réimeas ó mhuir go muir,
ón Abhainn Mór go críoch na cruinne.  Freagra

3. Óir saorfaidh sé na bochta nuair a ghlaofaidh siad air
agus na hainniseoirí gan chúnamh.
Glacfaidh sé trua don duine lag
agus sábhálfaidh sé an duine dealbh.     Freagra

4. Go moltar a ainm go brách
an fad a bheidh an ghrian ann.
Is tríd a bheannófar gach treibh;
beidh gach cine á mholadh.                     Freagra


Sliocht as Litir Naomh Pól chuig na Rómhánaigh        15:4-9
SlánaIonn Críost gach aon duine.

creationAbhráithre, gach ar scríobhadh fadó is dár dteagascna a scríobhadh é chun go mbeadh an fhoighne agus an sólás atá le fáil sa scrioptúr ina n-ábhar dóchais againn. Go dtuga Dia na foighne agus an tsóláis daoibhse a bheith báúil le chéile de réir mheon Chríost Íosa 6 ar shlí go mbeidh sibh d’aontoil agus d’aonghuth ag moladh Dé agus Athair ár dTiarna Íosa Críost.

Bíodh glacadh agaibh le chéile, mar sin, mar a ghlac Críost libh féin chun glóire Dé. Is é atáim a rá gur ar son fírinne Dé a tháinig Críost ag freastal ar lucht an timpeallghearrtha chun na gealltanais a tugadh do na patrarcaí a dhaingniú agus san am céanna chun go dtabharfadh na gintlithe glóir do Dhia ar son a thrócaire, mar atáscríofa: “Molfaidh mé thú dá bhrí sin i measc na náisiún,
agus canfaidh mé do d’ainm le duan.”

Briathar Dé.

Alleluia  Vearsa               Lc 3:4, 6
Alleluia, Alleluia!
Ullmhaigí bóthar an Tiarna, déanaigi díreach a chosáin. Agus feicfidh an uile cholainn shánú Dé.


Go raibh an Tiarna libh.      Agus le do spiorad féin
Sliocht as Soiscéal naofa de réir Naomh Mhatha     3:1-12          Glóir duit, a Thiarna.
Déanaigí aithrí mar tá ríocht na bhflaitheas in achmaireacht.

John the BSna laethanta sin, tháinig Eoin Baiste i láthair agus é ag seanmóir i bhfásach Iúdáia: “Déanaigí aithrí,” deireadh sé, “mar tá ríocht na bhflaitheas in achmaireacht.” Ag tagairt dó seo a bhí an chaint a dúirt Íseáia fáidh:

Glór duine ag éamh san fhásach:
‘Réitígí bóthar an Tiarna,
déanaigí díreach a chasáin.’”

Agus Eoin féin, bhí éadach de rón camaill air, agus crios leathair faoina choim, agus is é bia a bhíodh aige, lócaistí agus mil fhiáin. Ansin, bhí na daoine ag teacht amach chuige ó Iarúsailéim agus ó Iúdáia go léir agus ó cheantar uile na hIordáine, agus iad ag fáil bhaiste uaidh in abhainn na hIordáine ag admháil a bpeacaí.

Nuair a chonaic sé mórán de na Fairisínigh agus de na Sadúcaigh ag teacht chun baisteadh chuige, dúirt sé leo: “A sceith na bpéisteanna, cé thug leid daoibhse teitheadh ón díbheirg atá le teacht? Tugaigí, más ea, toradh uaibh is dual don aithrí, agus nárab áil libh a rá libh féin: ‘Tá Abrahám mar athair againn,’ óir deirim libh gur féidir le Dia clann a thógáil d’Abrahám as na clocha seo. Anois féin, tá an tua le fréamh na gcrann, agus gach crann nach dtugann toradh fónta uaidh, gearrfar anuas agus caithfear sa tine é. Táimse do bhur mbaisteadh le huisce, i gcomhair na haithrí; ach an té atá ag teacht i mo dhiaidh is treise é ná mise, agus ní fiú mé a bhróga a bhaint de: baistfidh seisean sibh leis an Spiorad Naomh agus le tine. Tá a cháiteog ina láimh aige agus déanfaidh sé a láithreán buailte a léirghlanadh; cruinneoidh sé a chuid arbhair isteach sa scioból, ach dófaidh sé an lóchán le tine dhomhúchta.”

Soiscéal an Tiarna.       Moladh duit, a Chriost

© An Sagart