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The Dignity and Importance of Labor

Yesterday, for the feast of St. Joseph the Worker, Pope Francis turned his attention to the topic of work  Here is the excerpt:

Dear Brothers and Sisters: On this first day of May, Mary’s month, we celebrate
the feast of Saint Joseph the Worker. Joseph, the carpenter of Nazareth, reminds
us of the dignity and importance of labour. Work is part of God’s plan for the
world; by responsibly cultivating the goods of creation, we grow in dignity as
men and women made in God’s image. For this reason, the problem of unemployment
urgently demands greater social solidarity and wise and just policies. I also
encourage the many young people present to look to the future with hope, and to
invest themselves fully in their studies, their work and their relationships
with others. Saint Joseph, as a model of quiet prayer and closeness to Jesus,
also invites us to think about the time we devote to prayer each day. In this
month of May, the Rosary naturally comes to mind as a way to contemplate the
mysteries of Christ’s life. May Saint Joseph and the Virgin Mary help us to be
faithful in our daily work and to lift up our minds and hearts to Jesus in

As with last week, there is no text on the Radio Vaticana site.  So we will have to wait for the full text.


The Final Judgment

In today’s catechesis for the Year of Faith, Pope Francis reflects on the Last Judgment.  Here is the English excerpt:

Dear Brothers and Sisters:

In our continuing catechesis on the Creed, we now consider the article which deals with Christ’s second coming: “He will come again in glory, to judge the living and the dead”. Just as human history began with the creation of man and woman in the image of God, so it will end with Christ’s return and the final judgment. The parables of Jesus help us to understand our responsibility before God and one another in this present age. The parable of the wise and foolish virgins reminds us that we must be spiritually prepared to meet the Lord when he comes. The parable of the talents emphasizes our responsibility to use wisely God’s gifts, making them bear abundant fruit. Here I would ask the many young people present to be generous with their God-given talents for the good of others, the Church and our world. Finally, the parable of the final judgement reminds us that, in the end, we will be judged on our love for others and especially for those in need. Through these parables, our Lord teaches us to await his coming with fear but confident trust, ever watchful for the signs of his presence and faithful in prayer and works of charity, so that when he comes he will find us his good and faithful servants.

For some reason, Radio Vaticana does not have a translation of the whole audience this week.  I guess we will have to wait until it goes up on the Vatican website next week.

On the Ascension

In today’s catechesis for the Year of Faith, Pope Francis reflects on Christ’s Ascension.  Here is the English summary:

Dear Brothers and Sisters: In our catechesis on the Creed during this Year of Faith, we now consider the article which deals with Christ’s Ascension: “He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father”. Saint Luke invites us to contemplate the mystery of the Ascension in the light of the Lord’s entire life, and particularly his decision to “ascend” to Jerusalem to embrace his saving passion and death in obedience to the Father’s will (cf. Lk 9:51). Two aspects of Luke’s account are significant. First, before returning to the glory of the Father, the risen Jesus blesses his disciples (Lk 24:50). Jesus thus appears as our eternal Priest. True God and true man, he now for ever intercedes for us before the Father. Second, Luke tells us that the Apostles returned to Jerusalem “with great joy” (Lk 24:51). They realize that the risen Lord, though no longer physically present, will always be with them, guiding the life of the Church until he returns in glory. As we contemplate the mystery of the Ascension, may we too bear joyful witness to the Lord’s resurrection, his loving presence in our midst, and the triumph of his Kingdom of life, holiness and love.

As usual, the Radio Vaticana has their translation of the full text on their website.

Pope Francis’ first audience!

Habemus Papam!

Today our freshly elected Pope Francis delivers his first general audience.  As per usual, is is a reflection on Holy Week.  Here is the excerpt for the English speaking audience:

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

On Palm Sunday we began Holy Week, the heart of the liturgical year, when we commemorate the great events that express most powerfully God’s loving plan for all men and women.  Jesus enters Jerusalem in order to give himself completely.  He gives us his body and his blood, and promises to remain with us always.  He freely hands himself over to death in obedience to the Father’s will, and in this way shows how much he loves us.  We are called to follow in his footsteps.  Holy Week challenges us to step outside ourselves so as to attend to the needs of others: those who long for a sympathetic ear, those in need of comfort or help.  We should not simply remain in our own secure world, that of the ninety-nine sheep who never strayed from the fold, but we should go out, with Christ, in search of the one lost sheep, however far it may have wandered.  Holy Week is not so much a time of sorrow, but rather a time to enter into Christ’s way of thinking and acting.  It is a time of grace given us by the Lord so that we can move beyond a dull or mechanical way of living our faith, and instead open the doors of our hearts, our lives, our parishes, our movements or associations, going out in search of others so as to bring them the light and the joy of our faith in Christ.

Radio Vaticana has their English translation of the entire audience.  As usual, the full text will probably show up on the Vatican website next week.

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