The Pope’s Evangelization prayer intention for the month of June is Vocations: That the personal encounter with Jesus may arouse in many young people the desire to offer their own lives in priesthood or consecrated life.
Just as marriage is not a career but a vocation, so too is the priesthood and the consecrated life. And just as marriage begins with an encounter that leads to a total gift of oneself to the other, so it is the same for those called to be priests, sisters, and brothers. Their vocations begin with an encounter with Jesus Christ, followed by a deepening relationship that leads to the desire to make a total gift of themselves to him.
In his first encyclical, Pope Benedict XVI wrote that “being a Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with a person.” At the beginning of The Joy of the Gospel, Pope Francis continued this emphasis, writing: “The joy of the Gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus.”
Pope Francis wants everyone to experience that joy. He said: “I invite all Christians, everywhere, at this very moment, to a renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ. 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.”
God wants everyone to know his love and the joy that flows from it. This joy spreads and creates a “vocation culture” which opens people to hear God’s call. Our own values and materialistic striving make it hard for young people to hear that sweet call of God.
In this Year of Consecrated Life, we pray for religious vocations this month, we recognize that the seeds of a vocation can only grow in good soil. That soil is our families, parish communities, and schools. It is there that young people will encounter Christ, be moved by his love, and respond by offering their lives in loving service. May our prayers, encouragement, and joy arouse in young people a desire to follow Jesus as brothers, sisters, and priests.
(Source: Apostleship of Prayer)
(from Vatican Radio)…
The Pope’s Evangelization prayer intention for the month of June is Vocations: That the personal encounter with Jesus may arouse in many young people the desire to offer their own lives in priesthood or consecrated life. Just as marriage is not a career but a vocation, so too is the priesthood and the consecrated life.…
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis says poverty today afflicts too many families.
Speaking during the weekly General Audience, the Pope continued his catechesis on the family opening up his reflections to a new perspective: the difficulties and problems that put families to the test in modern society.
One condition that afflicts families today – he said – is poverty. “Let’s think of the many families who populate the peripheries of large cities, and also of those who live in rural areas… how much misery, how much degradation!” he said.
And to make things even worse – the Pope continued – in some areas there is even war. War – he said – is always terrible, and it specially affects civilians and families.
“War really is the ‘mother of all poverties’, war impoverishes the family, it steals lives, souls, our most sacred feelings and our beloved ones” he said.
And yet – Pope Francis pointed out – even in the worst of circumstances, there are many poor people who persevere with dignity, often entrusting themselves to the goodness of God.
But – he warned – this fact must never be used to justify our indifference, rather it must increase our shame “that so much poverty exists!”
It’s almost a miracle – Francis said – that even amidst such poverty, families continue to be formed and sustained.
And he pointed out that those who consider family ties a secondary variable in respect to the quality of life “do not understand anything!”
We should kneel before these poor families – the Pope said – “they are a real school of humanity and they save society from barbarity”.
Pope Francis went on to say that “our modern economies often promote individual wellbeing at the expense of the family”, a reality that represents a grave contradiction as the immense work carried out by families is evaluated and appraised in budget plans.
The Pope concluded calling on Christians to always look for ways to strengthen and support families, especially poorer ones.
And he remarked on the fact that at this difficult time we all know some family member – a mother or a father – who are without work, and “the family suffers, the ties weaken. This is bad” he said.
The Church, as a mother – he said – can never be blind to the sufferings of her children. He said that she too must be poor so as to become fruitful and to be able to respond to so much misery.
For each of us, this means choosing simplicity both individually and in our institutions, so as to break down walls of division, especially poverty.
“To do this, prayer and action are needed” he said.
(from Vatican Radio)…
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis says poverty today afflicts too many families. Speaking during the weekly General Audience, the Pope continued his catechesis on the family opening up his reflections to a new perspective: the difficulties and problems that put families to the test in modern society. One condition that afflicts families today – he said…
(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Wednesday expressed his closeness to the Chinese people following the capsizing of a cruise ship on the Yangtze River.
Speaking to the crowds gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the General Audience, the Pope turned his thoughts to the victims and their families as hopes of finding any more survivors from the disaster fade.
“The Eastern Star”, with 456 mostly elderly people on board, overturned in bad weather on Monday night.
18 people are now confirmed to have died and 14 have been rescued.
“In a particular way I wish to express my closeness to the Chinese people in these difficult moments after the ferry disaster in the Yangtze River. pray for the victims, their families and for all involved in the rescue efforts” he said.
(from Vatican Radio)…