Life after Epiphany


Leave a comment

Benedict XVI: For the record

This post, on a blog I stumbled across this morning for the first time, is a wonderful tribute to the Pope Emeritus. None of this detracts from Pope Francis, whom I believe may just prove to be as saintly a Pope as his more recent predecessors. But the media ought to be ashamed of themselves for failing to report the real story. The real story here is the CONTINUITY of humility, the CONTINUITY of holiness in the Papacy. Slightly different styles, slightly different emphases… but CONTINUITY where it counts. Fidelity to Truth. Fidelity to Love. Fidelity to God.

I believe that all of the media circus about Pope Francis is an attempt by the media to gain some kind of leverage in shaping the direction of the messages that come out from Rome. I kind of almost get the feel that, due to Pope Francis’ country of origin being in Latin America, they are trying put an insidiously subtle liberation theology spin on everything he does…

Advertisements


Leave a comment

charity begins at home… Pope encouraging grassroots change

We saw major steps in ecumenism and cultural interchange with Pope Benedict XVI. This movement on the “big picture” was truly beautiful and enriching for the Church.

It certainly seems as though we are now receiving enrichment of a different kind; Pope Francis in his preaching and in his public messages to date seems to be honing in on the individual and his/her relationship with God.

Pope Francis’ recent Twitter feed is my case in point:

pontifextwitterfeed

And most recently: “Never speak poorly of others.”

These tweets are all short extracts taken from recent homilies and addresses. Each speaks to an aspect of one’s personal relationship with Christ and the nature of how that relationship expresses itself in relationship with others. It is the encounter with Christ that is important! Pope Francis is inviting each one of us to take a good look at ourselves, to stand as we are before the Lord and to receive His love and mercy and seek to live out the love we have received. His messages are simple but important…  and potentially very powerful in their effect, if we take them to heart.

Its almost like Pope Francis is acting as a personal spiritual director to every single individual in the Church throughout the world! How amazing that such a thing is even possible! Changing hearts. This can only be done by the Holy Spirit. It seems that He is working through our Holy Father in this way… we need to open ourselves up to these graces!

Both the “big picture” and the “grassroots growth” need attention. Each of us needs a shepherd to help lead us to Christ as individuals, and we also as the People of God, as a Church, need a shepherd. Both men are different, and the Holy Spirit has given each individual holding the Office of Pope a different task. Isn’t encouraging to see that all of us are being well tended?


Leave a comment

Aussie representation at Pope Francis’ Inaugural Mass

aussieFlagInRome

Credit: Marta Jiménez Ibáñez/Catholic News Agency

Among the 200,000 pilgrims that attended the Inaugural Mass of Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Square on the Feast of St. Joseph were a small group of Australians who attended as representatives of the young adult community. One of them was my brother, a recent law graduate from the University of Notre Dame, Sydney. lawGrad had the distinguished privilege of carrying the Australian flag at the Mass, and it turns out that this flag was the biggest flag from any nation to appear in St. Peter’s Square that day! This was not a deliberate thing, but it turned out to be a fortunate thing for me, for it obviously attracted a great deal of media attention and as such I was able to watch my brother on news broadcasts even though he was half a world away!

Australian Catholics had more representation at the Mass than was perhaps widely known. The Deacon who retrieved the Fisherman’s ring from the tomb of St. Peter and presented it to the Holy Father is a seminarian of the Archdiocese of Sydney. In fine voice, the Deacon also sang the liturgical instructions and the general intercessions. Striking in his humility, the Deacon later insisted on social media that the highlight of the Mass was receiving the Eucharist from the hands of the Vicar of Christ.

Proud to be Aussie, proud to be Catholic… yet humble in Christ. This is the picture that our Australian representatives in Rome have painted.

aussieFlagInRome2

Demonstrates comparative size of the Australian flag with those others surrounding it. Credit: ABC News 24

 

A similarly strong sense of identity, side by side with humility, shines forth from the Holy Father’s papal motto, “Lowly, yet chosen.” Building upon this theme in the homily of his Inaugural Mass, Pope Francis called upon those who hold positions of responsibility in economic, political and social life to exercise an authentic leadership that is tempered with the humility, the goodness and the tenderness so crucial to the vocation of ‘Protector’ as exemplified by St. Joseph.

The words of Pope Francis should give great hope to Catholics in Australia. We are not wrong in looking to our bishops and priests to be protectors. Further, we are called to join them in protecting the elderly, children and the weak in our community, along with the environment in which we live.


1 Comment

vatican web has a new look…

changingfaceofvaticanweb2

The site has changed several times now, to reflect the transition from Pope Benedict to Sede Vacante and now to Pope Francis. For anyone interested in a tiny tidbit of history, you can see what it used to look like here.


1 Comment

Pope Francis I already has a Wikipedia page…

Can you believe it!?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_francis

Here is the coverage from white smoke through to the end of the Pope’s address. The white smoke is in the first minute. Once you have seen some of the coverage of the crowds, you may wish to skip through to the Habemus Papam announcement at 1 hour and 7 minutes. Pope Francis’ first appearance and address starts at 1 hour and 16 minutes.

Blessed be God for the gift of this humble, prayerful shepherd. The world is grateful for his generous “yes”, that he would wear the shoes of the Fisherman, that he would serve the Lord by becoming father of the faithful. Pope Francis, we pray for you as you have asked us to do. May you always cling to the Cross of our Saviour. May He be with you always.


Leave a comment

Habemus Papam!! Standing by to see who it is!

Blessed be God in all His gifts!!

loggiaOnTV

All eyes around the world glued to the loggia…

UPDATE: Go here to see the coverage of this historic event from the white smoke all the way through to the end of Pope Francis’ first appearance on the balcony!