Readings for Wednesday 2 April 2014 (4th Week of Lent)
Is 49:8-15. Ps 144:8-9, 13-14, 17-18, R/ v 8. Jn 5:17-30. www.catholicbishops.ie/readings.
Pride and joy in belonging to the Church shouls be part of our inheritance. Today the readings in so many metaphors express the fullness of life in the Church, of the life of God’s chosen people. ‘Baptism is the sacrament by which its recipients are incorporated into the Church and are built up together in the Spirit into a house where God lives, into a holy nation and a royal priesthood’ (Rite of Baptism).
Today we remember Saint Francis of Paola who was born in Calabria in 1416. He was a hermit and attracted others to his way of life, later called the Order of Minims. He died at Tours in France in 1507.
“Dear parents, teach your children to pray. Pray with them.”
Follow Pope Francis on Twitter @Pontifex.
Excerpt from Evangelii Gaudium The Joy of the Gospel
“The family is experiencing a profound cultural crisis, as are all communities and social bonds. In the case of the family, the weakening of these bonds is particularly serious because the family is the fundamental cell of society, where we learn to live with others despite our differences and to belong to one another; it is also the place where parents pass on the faith to their children. Marriage now tends to be viewed as a form of mere emotional satisfaction that can be constructed in any way or modified at will. But the indispensible contribution of marriage to society transcends the feelings and momentary needs of the couple. As the French bishops have taught, it is not born “of loving sentiment, ephemeral by definition, but from the depth of the obligation assumed by the spouses who accept to enter a total communion of life.” – Evangelii Gaudium 66.
Pope Francis’ Prayer Intentions for April 2014
Pope Francis’ universal prayer intention for April is: “That governments may foster the protection of creation and the just distribution of natural resources”.
His intention for evangelisation is: “That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness”.
Trócaire Fast ….. Can you help to make a difference this Lent?
Take part in Trócaire’s 24 hour Fast on Friday 18th April 2014! Ask your family and friends to sponsor you. If you don’t want to give up food for the day, you can give up anything else you want.. as long as it’s a challenge! Try giving up your phone or social media.
For more information see http://www.trocaire.org/takeaction/fundraise
Daily Lenten Prayers
(i) We pray for all in need;
may we, as God’s people,
show care by responding to the needs of those
who are less fortunate.
(ii) We pray for the Church;
may it lead people to worship the Lord our god
and serve him alone.
(iii) We pray for vocations;
that those the Lord calls will place their trust in him
and follow their calling.
Children’s First Experience of the Family of the Church
through the witness of our lives,
we are the first heralds of the gospel
for our children.
Guide us and be with us Jesus
as we pray with our children,
read the word of God with them
and as we introduce them
into the body of Christ, the family of the Church
(Rev Peter Murphy, inspired by Blessed John Paul II, Familiaris Consortio, n 39)
Resources on the Vatican website for Lent 2014
The Vatican is collating all the resources for Lent 2014 on a special link on the home page of www.vatican.va. It includes the catechesis, addresses and homilies of the Holy Father, information on liturgical events and video and other multimedia content. Click here to access it.
The Meaning of Lent
The English word ‘Lent’ comes from the Anglo-Saxon word Lencten, meaning ‘Spring’. In other languages the word comes from the Latin, Quadragesima – a period of 40 days. In the Christian tradition the forty days is understood to refer to a time of intense prayer and preparation; we remember the biblical stories of Noah and the flood of 40 days, the forty years the Israelites spent wandering in the wilderness and Christ’s forty day fast in the desert in preparation for his earthly ministry.