“To kill in the name of God is sacrilege. To discriminate in the name of God is inhuman.” – Pope in Albania Sept. 21
1. THE JOY OF THE GOSPEL fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus. Those who accept his offer of salvation are set free from sin, sorrow, inner emptiness and loneliness. With Christ joy is constantly born anew. In this Exhortation I wish to encourage the Christian faithful to embark upon a new chapter of evangelization marked by this joy, while pointing out new paths for the Church’s journey in years to come.
2. The great danger in today’s world, pervaded as it is by consumerism, is the desolation and anguish born of a complacent yet covetous heart, the feverish pursuit of frivolous pleasures, and a blunted conscience. Whenever our interior life becomes caught up in its own interests and concerns, there is no longer room for others, no place for the poor. God’s voice is no longer heard, the quiet joy of his love is no longer felt, and the desire to do good fades. This is a very real danger for believers too. Many fall prey to it, and end up resentful, angry and listless. That is no way to live a dignified and fulfilled life; it is not God’s will for us, nor is it the life in the Spirit which has its source in the heart of the risen Christ.
3. I invite all Christians, everywhere, at this very moment, to a renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ, or at least an openness to letting him encounter them; I ask all of you to do this unfailingly each day. No one should think that this invitation is not meant for him or her, since “no one is excluded from the joy brought by the Lord”. The Lord does not disappoint those who take this risk; whenever we take a step towards Jesus, we come to realize that he is already there, waiting for us with open arms. Now is the time to say to Jesus: “Lord, I have let myself be deceived; in a thousand ways I have shunned your love, yet here I am once more, to renew my covenant with you. I need you. Save me once again, Lord, take me once more into your redeeming embrace”. How good it feels to come back to him whenever we are lost! Let me say this once more: God never tires of forgiving us; we are the ones who tire of seeking his mercy. Christ, who told us to forgive one another “seventy times seven” (Mt 18:22) has given us his example: he has forgiven us seventy times seven. Time and time again he bears us on his shoulders. No one can strip us of the dignity bestowed upon us by this boundless and unfailing love. With a tenderness which never disappoints, but is always capable of restoring our joy, he makes it possible for us to lift up our heads and to start anew. Let us not flee from the resurrection of Jesus, let us never give up, come what will. May nothing inspire more than his life, which impels us onwards!
Divine Mercy 101
- DM 101: Week 1 – What is Divine Mercy?
- DM 101: Week 2 – Mercy is God’s Greatest Attribute
- DM 101: Week 3 – The Genesis Story of Divine Mercy
- DM 101: Week 4 – Moses and the God of Mercy
- DM 101: Week 5 – Divine Mercy in the Psalms
- DM 101: Week 6 – Divine Mercy in the Prophets
- DM 101: Week 7 – Divine Mercy in the New Testament
- DM 101: Week 8 – St. Luke: The Gospel of Mercy
- DM 101: Week 9 – The Parables of Divine Mercy
- DM 101: Week 10 – The Good Shepherd Rejoices!
- DM 101: Week 11 – The Father of the Prodigal Son
- DM 101: Week 12 – Mercy is for Everyone!
- DM 101: Week 13 – The Cross and The Resurrection
- DM 101: Week 14 – The Mercy Message of St. Peter and St. Paul
- DM 101: Week 15 – The Life of St. Augustine
- DM 101: Week 16 – St. Augustine on Divine Mercy
- DM 101: Week 17 – The God of Both Justice and Mercy
- DM 101: Week 18 – St. Thomas Aquinas on the Virtue of Mercy
- DM 101: Week 19 – Aquinas Defines Divine Mercy
- DM 101: Week 20 – The Saving Work of the Son of God
- DM 101: Week 21 – A Superabundant Satisfaction for Sin
- DM 101: Week 22 – Aquinas on Mercy, Judgment, and Mary
- DM 101: Week 23 – St. Thomas Aquinas — St. Catherine of Siena
- DM 101: Week 24 – The Spirituality of St. Catherine of Siena
- DM 101: Week 25 – The Bridge of Mercy — and Canticle of Mercy
- DM 101: Week 26 – Divine Mercy Greater Than Sin and Despair
- DM 101: Week 27 – St. Bonaventure on St. Francis of Assisi
- DM 101: Week 28 – The Little Flowers of St. Francis
- DM 101: Week 29 – St. Bonaventure and The Tree of Life
- DM 101: Week 30 – St. John Eudes and The Merciful Heart of Jesus
- DM 101: Week 31 – The Sacred Heart and The Divine Mercy
- DM 101: Week 32 – St. Margaret Mary and The Sacred Heart
- DM 101: Week 33 – The Spirituality of St. Alphonsus Liguori
- DM 101: Week 34 – St. Alphonsus Liguori’s
- DM 101: Week 35 – The Life of St. Therese of Lisieux:
- DM 101: Week 36 – Stop to Appreciate the ‘Little Flower’
- DM 101: Week 37 – Divine Mercy in the Autobiography of St. Therese
- DM 101: Week 38 – The Early Life of Bl. Dina Belanger of Quebec
- DM 101: Week 39 – The Spiritual Formation of Bl. Dina
- DM 101: Week 40 – Kindred Spirits in the Eucharist
- DM 101: Week 41 – Compare the Teachings of St. Faustina and Bl. Dina
- DM 101: Week 42 – Jesus Enables Us to Trust in Him!
- DM 101: Week 43 – The Life of St. Maria Faustina Kowalska: Apostle of Divine Mercy
- DM 101: Week 44 – The Message of Mercy in the Diary of St. Faustina
- DM 101: Week 45 – The Mercy Devotion Spreads — is Banned — and Spreads Again!
- DM 101: Week 46 – The Chaplet Sets the Philippines Free! — and the First Papal Visit to St. Faustina’s Tomb
- DM 101: Week 47 – Image, Feast, and a New Millenium of Mercy!
- DM 101: Week 48 – The Divine Mercy Legacy of Pope John Paul II
- DM 101: Week 49 – The Pope and St. Faustina’s Prophetic Revelations for our Time
- DM 101: Week 50 – Divine Mercy: A Personal Encounter with Our Savior Himself
- DM 101: Week 51 – Divine Mercy in Catholic Tradition: Conclusion
- The Image of The Divine Mercy (Part One) – Divine Mercy 101: Elements of the Devotion
- The Image of The Divine Mercy (Part Two) – Divine Mercy 101: Elements of the Devotion
- The Image of The Divine Mercy (Part Three) – Divine Mercy 101: Elements of the Devotion
- The Image of The Divine Mercy (Part Four) – Divine Mercy 101: Elements of the Devotion
- – Divine Mercy Sunday: What’s This Feast All About, Anyway?
Listening to her, she seems cut from the same cloth as her now-famous sibling: Humble and unpretentious, and also completely unafraid to speak her mind.
For instance, when stories began to make the rounds about Francis having become a priest only because a young love rejected his marriage proposal, Maria Elena was there to bat it down. She insisted that her brother was only a kid at the time, and the idea of getting married was never serious. More ominously, when critics suggested that her brother had been complicit in Argentina’s military junta, Maria Elena testily pointed out that her family emigrated from Italy because their father was opposed to fascism … the clear suggestion being that Jorge Mario Bergoglio would never betray his father’s memory by cozying up to dictators.Read more……….