Sep 19, 2014

Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction - St Janusarius (feast day of Sept 19th)


Sometimes, truth is stranger than fiction. In the case of relics and incorruptibles, not to mention other Catholic-y things, this very often rings true. St. Januarius, whose feast we celebrate today, is one such case. Fr. Damian Ference gives a riveting account of his martyrdom and the miraculous occurrences surrounding St. Januarius' most famous relic - his blood!
 
Read about it HERE

You can read more about the miracle HERE and HERE.

Sep 16, 2014

Day of Prayer for the Synod on the Family



From the Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops: A request for special prayers on Sunday, 28 September, for the III Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops.

Day of Prayer
for the III Extraordinary General Assembly of the
Synod of Bishops
Sunday, 28 September 2014

Sunday, 28 September is to be set aside as a Day of Prayer for the III Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, scheduled to take place from 5 to 19 October to treat the topic: The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization.

Particular churches, parish communities, institutes of consecrated life, associations and movements are invited to pray for this intention during Mass and at other liturgical celebrations, in the days leading to the synod and during the synod itself. In Rome, in the Basilica of Saint Mary Major, prayers will be recited each day in the chapel of the icon, Salus Populi Romani. The faithful, individually but above all in families, are invited to join in these prayers.



The suggested prayers include the Prayer to the Holy Family for the Synod, composed by Pope Francis, and the following proposed intentions during the Prayers of the Faithful which can be adapted at Sunday Mass on 28 September and during the synod. These intentions can also be included in the petitions at Lauds and Vespers. The recitation of the Holy Rosary is also recommended for the duration of the synodal assembly.


I - Prayer to the Holy Family for the Synod

Jesus, Mary and Joseph,
in you we contemplate
the splendour of true love,
to you we turn with trust.
Holy Family of Nazareth,
grant that our families too
may be places of communion and prayer,
authentic schools of the Gospel
and small domestic Churches.
Holy Family of Nazareth,
may families never again
experience violence, rejection and division:
may all who have been hurt or scandalized
find ready comfort and healing.
Holy Family of Nazareth,
may the approaching Synod of Bishops
make us once more mindful
of the sacredness and inviolability of the family,
and its beauty in God’s plan.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph,
graciously hear our prayer.
Amen.
 
 
II - Prayers of the Faithful.

Sep 14, 2014

A Virtual Choir of Carmelites




"Nada Te Turbe" is one of two virtual choirs produced for the celebration of St. Teresa of Jesus's 500th birthday. The choir is made up of Carmelite Nuns from around the world and is accompanied by the Teresian Orchestra of St. James Cathedral in Seattle, Washington, USA. Music composed by Claire Sokol, OCD.

The prayer — which is more of a sort of contemplative pulse — is this:

Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.







"Salve Regina" is the second of two virtual choirs produced for the celebration of St. Teresa of Jesus's 500th birthday. This virtual choir is made up of Carmelite Nuns and Friars from around the world and highlights the internationality and diversity of the Carmelite Order. Music composed by Claire Sokol, OCD.


Sep 13, 2014

14 September 2014 - Sr. Teresia Byrne - The Exaltation of the Holy Cross

On this week's programme we have an interview with Sr. Teresia Byrne. We have our regular reflection on the Sunday gospel as well as some other odds and ends.

You can listen to the podcast of this week's programme HERE.

Sr. Teresia Byrne
This week Sr. Teresia Byrne, Good Shepherd Sister, shares her story with us and brings us on a journey from Carlow to Egypt followed by Sudan for a total of 50 years and now Roxboro in Limerick. From a family with very strong faith Sr. Teresia wanted to work on the missions from an early age. After hearing a talk on the Passion of Jesus while a teenager she made up her mind to devote her life to God and joined the Good Shepherd order and got her first taste of working abroad in 1955 teaching in Egypt. In 1980’s she had the opportunity to work in Sudan in ‘all kinds of areas’ mainly helping women. When asked what keeps you going she tells us – ‘My relationship with Jesus’. She remembers the sacrifices made by her family as left Ireland not knowing if she would ever return again.  Sr. Teresia tells us that at this stage of her life she sees her mission as praying for others. 


Based in Roxboro, Sr. Teresia is very involved in various parish activities and twice a year organises a Prayer Guides week. As she shares with us, being a religious Sister is anything but boring!!  Sr. Teresia's interview excerpted from the programme is available HERE.  



Gospel - John 3:13-17



Jesus said to Nicodemus:

No one has gone up to heaven
except the one who came down from heaven,
the Son of Man who is in heaven;
and the Son of Man must be lifted up
as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert,
so that everyone who believes
may have eternal life in him.
Yes, God loved the world so much
that he gave his only Son,
so that everyone who believes in him may not be lost
but may have eternal life.
For God sent his Son into the world
not to condemn the world,
but so that through him the world might be saved.’

Reflections on this week's gospel:


Word on Fire
English Dominicans
Centre for Liturgy

Liturgical odds and ends

Saints of the Week

September 15th - Our Lady of Sorrows
September 16th - St. Cornelius and St. Cyprian
September 17th - St. Robert Bellarmine
September 18th - St. Joseph of Cupertino
September 19th - St. Januarius
September 20th - St. Andrew Kim Tae-gon and St. Paul Chong Ha-Sang and Companion Martyrs

Sep 12, 2014

Good News - Six men make solemn profession with Irish Dominicans


Six Dominican brothers made their definitive commitment to living as Dominican friars - "solemn profession" - in Dublin on 7th September.

Brothers Conor McDonough OP, Damian Polly OP, Daragh McNally OP, (back row, left to right) Eoin Casey OP, Ronan Connolly OP and David McGovern OP (front row, left to right) made their profession in the hands of Fr Gregory Carroll OP, prior provincial.

The celebration took place during conventual Mass on Sunday 7th September in St Saviour's Church, Dublin, with the local Dominican community, parishioners of Dominick Street parish, visiting Dominican friars, family and friends of the six brothers who travelled from far and wide.

The six brothers joined the Order in Cork in 2009 as part of a group of twelve. They are the first to make solemn profession from the eight of the original group who are still in the Order.

The large group of brothers making solemn profession should not be considered an exceptional increase in the vocations statistics for the Irish Dominicans.

The average annual intake of the province remains less than three and the average number of priestly ordinations for the same period remains slightly more than one per year.

You can see more pictures of the ceremony from Dominican Interactive HERE.


 
It has been a joyful year for the Irish Dominicans with a number of priestly ordinations earlier in the year:
 


Vatican Announces Feast Days of Newly Canonized Pontiffs


From Zenit:
The Feast Days of Saints John XXIII and John Paul II will be on October 11th and October 22nd respectively, the Vatican has announced.

In a decree published in today’s edition of L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican said Pope Francis had approved putting the saints on the Church’s general Roman calendar of feast days in light of "countless requests from every part of the world.” The decree, issued by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, stated they will be optional and not obligatory memorials.

Vatican watcher Sandro Magister notes that the saints will join fifteen other popes - in addition to St. Peter - mentioned in the calendar. Only four of these are an "obligatory memorial": St. Gregory the Great (Sept. 3), St. Cornelius (Sept. 16) and St. Leo the Great (Nov. 10). The only holy pontiff of the second millennium with a mandatory feast day is St. Pius X (Aug. 21).

New norms regarding obligatory and mandatory feast days were implemented in 2007 on account for the relatively large number of saints who are now celebrated in the Church.

Sep 9, 2014

Habemus Episcopum Anglicanam - We have a new bishop!

SS102fm extends cordial congratulations to the Church of Ireland United diocese of Limerick & Killaloe on the election of their new bishop is succession to Dr Trevor Williams (who was interviewed on SS102fm here).

 
From the diocesan website:
Canon Kearon is Secretary General of the Anglican Communion, a position he has held since 2005. Born in 1953, he is a native of Dublin. Educated at Trinity College Dublin (TCD), he served his curacy in All Saints Raheny and St John's Coolock, before becoming Dean of Residence at TCD in 1984, a position he held until 1990. He was Rector of the Parish of Tullow (Dublin) from 1991 to 1999 after which he became Director of the Irish School of Ecumenics (1999-2005). Dr Kearon is a Canon of Christ Church Cathedral Dublin and an Honorary Provincial Canon of Canterbury Cathedral, St Paul's Cathedral London and St George's Cathedral Jerusalem. He also has an extenisive list of publications to his name, including "Medical Ethics: An Introduction" published in 1995 by Columba press.

Our new Bishop elect is married to Jennifer and they have three adult daughters: Gillian who lives and works in New Zealand, Rachel and Alison, both of whom live and work in Ireland.  
The Most Revd Dr Michael Jackson, Archbishop of Dublin, said, 'Canon Kearon has expressed his delight at returning to work in Ireland and his intention to serve the people of Limerick and Killaloe and the communities of which they are a part. I have known Canon Kearon for many years and have always appreciated his personal friendship. I wish Kenneth and Jennifer all that is best within the love of God in their time in Limerick and Killaloe.'

The bishop-elect said: 'I am honoured and delighted to have been elected to the Diocese of Limerick and Killaloe, and I look forward to getting to know the diocese, its people and its clergy well in the near future. Ireland has been through a very difficult period in its history, and I look forward to helping the diocese play its part and making its contribution to shaping the future. This diocese has made a distinctive contribution to the Church of Ireland in the past, in part through the work of its bishops and most recently through Bishop Trevor Williams, and I hope to be able to continue in their footsteps.

There are still some procedures to be completed, including the formal approval of the House of Bishops, so there is, as yet, no date set for the consecration. Nevertheless we look forward to welcoming our Dr. & Mrs Kearnon as Bishop Kenneth and Jennifer to their new home amongst us here in the Mid-West of Ireland and offer our prayerfull support as they prepare for the upheaval of moving."

We welcome the new bishop-elect and his family to Shannon side and perhaps look forward to inviting him on the programme at some future date.

Update:

Comments from Bishop Brendan Leahy on the election news.

Sep 7, 2014

7 September - Catholic Grandparents Association - 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

On this week's programme we have an interview with Máire Printer from the Catholic Grandparents Association. We have our regular reflection on the Sunday gospel as well as some other odds and ends.

You can listen to the podcast of this week's programme HERE.

Catholic Grandparents Association



Máire Printer joined us on this week's programme to tell us about the Catholic Grandparents Association which was set up by Catherine Wiley to support the vocation of grandparents in passing on the faith and keeping prayer at the heart of family life.  Máire tells us about the history of the Association and shares with us some of the prayers for grandparents written by their grandchildren and why it is so important to support the vocation of grandparents today. Máire also invites everyone, but especially grandparents and grandchildren, to the National Grandparents pilgrimage to Knock next Sunday: 




Maire's interview excerpted from the programme is available HERE.  More information about the Catholic Grandparents Association is available at www.catholicgranparentsassociation.org 

Gospel - Matthew 18:15-20




Jesus said to his disciples: 

‘If your brother does something wrong, go and have it out with him alone, between your two selves.  If he listens to you, you have won back your brother.
If he does not listen, take one or two others along with you:
the evidence of two or three witnesses is required to sustain any charge.

But if he refuses to listen to these,
report it to the community;
and if he refuses to listen to the community,
treat him like a pagan or a tax collector.

‘I tell you solemnly, whatever you bind on earth shall be considered bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth shall be considered loosed in heaven.

‘I tell you solemnly once again, if two of you on earth agree to ask anything at all, it will be granted to you by my Father in heaven.
For where two or three meet in my name, I shall be there with them.’

In this week's gospel, Jesus gives us the model for fraternal correction.  If one of our brothers or sisters does something wrong, we are not to gossip about them behind their back or moan about the injustice that was done.  We are to approach the person alone first.  It is only after we have done this that we are to progress to the next option.  Fraternal or neighbourly correction is difficult and we must only do it out of love - the true love that wishes good for the other person.  Do you love your brother or sister enough to tell them the truth in love?  Correction will only be effective if it is exercised out of this genuine type of love.  It requires both honesty and kindness.  It involves loving our neighbour as ourselves and asking ourselves if the shoe was on the other foot, what way would we like our brother or sister to correct us?







Other reflections on this week's gospel:

Word on Fire
Sunday Reflections
English Dominicans
Centre for Liturgy

Liturgical odds and ends

Saints of the Week

September 8th - The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
September 9th - St. Ciaran
September 10th - St. Salvius of Albi
September 11th - St. Paphnutius
September 12th - St. Ailbe
September 13th - St. John Chrysostom

Notices

September 8th: Mass & Candlelight Procession for Our Lady's Birthday

This is the third year that a special procession has been held in Limerick to honour the birthday of Our Lady. The procession is inspired by the torchlight procession of Lourdes. 

This year Bishop Brendan Leahy joins the Monks of Moyross and the Corbett Suicide Prevention Group to lead the celebrations. 

Mass will be celebrated at 7pm in St Johns Cathedral and a torchlight processions will follow through the streets of Limerick, stopping for a minutes silence on Thomond Bridge where a wreath will be laid for those who have died by suicide. 

Everyone is asked to bring their own candles for the procession. At the end of Mass scapulars of Our Lady will be distributed free and people can participate in an enrolment prayer.  The processions will end in Arthurs Quay park and the Monks have baked a cake for a small celebration there!

Sep 2, 2014

Passion: A Would You Believe special - RTE 1

Last Easter in the parishes of Pallasgreen/Nicker (Co Limerick, Diocese of Cashel & Emily); a local group worked with the whole community to recreate The Passion of Our Lord over a 24 hour period, from Holy Thursday to Good Friday, including [in real time] the agony at Gethsemane, the flogging and crown of thorns, and His trial and Crucifixion.

For the 6000 + people who attended this was not a performance, It was an experience! The event was recorded by RTE TV and will be shown as part of the ‘Would You Believe’ series on Sunday 14th September at 10:30 pm.

Watch this video for a taster of this powerful experience....


Aug 31, 2014

For those moments when it seems a bit much, just a quick reminder


31 August 2014 - Trocaire's appeal for Middle East - 22nd Sunday in Ordinary time

The SS102fm team is back with an almost full contingent on air this morning with John, Lorraine, Anne and the welcome return of Michael Keating to studio. On this weeks programme we have an interview with Caoimhe de Barra who is the International Director of Trocaire and she is talking about Trocaire's work. We have our regular reflection on the Sunday gospel as well as some other odds and ends.
 
You can listen to the podcast of this weeks programme HERE.

Trocaire
 
Trócaire works in over 20 countries throughout Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. In 2013-14, their programme work had a direct impact on the lives of over 3.4 million people in these regions. Trócaire delivers support through local partner organisations and churches, helping communities and families to free themselves from the oppression of poverty.

In Ireland, they raise awareness about the causes of poverty through their outreach programmes in the education sector, through parish networks, and through their public campaigns and advocacy work.

 
Iraq/Syria
 
Trócaire has committed humanitarian aid to respond to the urgent needs of civilians from minority communities in northern Iraq, who have fled their homes under threat of attack from the militant group, Islamic State (formerly ISIS). A major humanitarian crisis has unfolded in the region, with 850,000 people fleeing in the last two months alone to escape brutal attacks by IS, as it seeks to extend its control across the region. The total displaced since the start of the year stands at 1.4 million.

“The lives of thousands of people from minorities in Iraq, including Christians, Yazidis and Turkmen, are in critical danger, as this humanitarian crisis escalates,” said Éamonn Meehan, Executive Director of Trócaire.

“People trapped in conflict zones are seeking shelter wherever they can find safety, often in churches and temples, and are in desperate need of urgent emergency aid."

“Trócaire is working with our partners in northern Iraq to assess the needs of these people and has committed an initial €300,000 to respond to this evolving emergency.”

 
Gaza
 
Trócaire is appealing for your support for their efforts to deliver emergency aid to Gaza and their work towards a just peace in the region. Conflict in Gaza has killed over 1,800 civilians and displaced more than 485,000 people. They are also working with partners in Israel and the West Bank to build a just peace based on a respect for human rights.
 


 

For more information and to donate to our Gaza appeal - www.trocaire.org

You can listen to Caoimhe de Barra's interview excerpted from the main programme HERE.

Gospel - Matthew 16:21-27

 
From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him and began to rebuke him, saying, "God forbid, Lord! This shall never happen to you." But he turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me; for you are not on the side of God, but of men."
 
Then Jesus told his disciples, "If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man, if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what shall a man give in return for his life? For the Son of man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay every man for what he has done

Other reflections on this weeks gospel:

Word on Fire
Sunday Reflections
English Dominicans
Centre for Liturgy

Liturgical odds and ends

Saints of the Week

September 1st  - Bl Pedro Rivera
September 2nd - St Margaret of Louvain
September 3rd - St Pope Gregory the Great
September 4th - Saint Macanisius
September 5th - Blessed Teresa of Calcutta (First Friday)
September 6th - Saint Maccallin of Lusk

Pope's Intentions for September

  • Mentally disabled. That the mentally disabled may receive the love and help they need for a dignified life.
  • Service to the poor. That Christians, inspired by the Word of God, may serve the poor and suffering.
  • Aug 24, 2014

    24th August - Reflecting on Prayer - 21st Sunday in Ordinary time (Year A)

    The SS102fm team makes a return to the airwaves this week after a couple of weeks break as well as some delays due to technical difficulties at WL102fm HQ in Newcastle West. We hope that our readers and listeners found some time and opportunity to have some "down time" over the summer to recharge the batteries.

    On this weeks programme John and Lorraine reflect on prayer and the different types of prayer. We have our regular reflection on the Sunday gospel and some other liturgical odds and ends. 

    You can listen to the podcast of this weeks programme HERE.

    Reflecting on Prayer


    "Lord teach us to pray" was the cry of the apostles and sometimes it can be a difficult thing to do - or rather we can make it a difficult thing to do! St Teresa of Avila is often quoted as saying that "prayer in my opinion is nothing else than an intimate sharing between friends; it means taking time frequently to be alone with him who we know loves us". John and Lorraine reflect on prayer on this weeks programme.

    You can listen to this section of the programme excerpted HERE.

    Gospel - Matthew 16: 13-20 - "Who do you say I AM?"



    "Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesare'a Philip'pi, he asked his disciples, "Who do men say that the Son of man is?" And they said, "Some say John the Baptist, others say Eli'jah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets." He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" Simon Peter replied, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." And Jesus answered him, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ."

    From Limerick Diocese weekly newsletter:

    It is important to know what the church teaches, what society says, what is news and what is everlasting. All these things inform us.  In fact, Jesus begins his teaching today by asking this - who do 'people' say I am? Whats the general opinion? whats the consensus? ...   Then he takes it to the next level:
    ‘But you,’ he said ‘who do you say I am?’
    After all the words, all the information, all the noise and opinions ... what do you believe? where do you stand? Do you have an answer? I wonder if any of the apostles felt a little shocked or upset at the question? They were following him, wasn't that enough! Why did they have to articulate it like this?
    We live in a world full of noise and information and ideas. We are easily manipulated into agreeing or disagreeing with the prevailing stories. We are advertised to, preached at, entertained. Sometimes its hard to slow down and know what is really our opinion, our belief. 
    Jesus challenges us today with this question "Who do you say I am?". He does not ask it because he is unsure, he asks because he wants to know what you've learnt, how you're developing in faith. 
    Heres your homework this week then: In one paragraph, with only your own words and no quotes, answer Jesus question. Then bring that answer to some fellow Christians and share your thoughts.  Don't be afraid to struggle with the question - its a sign you're going deeper. Ask Gods help in prayer, that God might reveal to you what is true and good and divine. 
    You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God. 
    Alleluia, Amen.

    Other reflections on this weeks gospel:

    Sunday Reflections
    Word on Fire
    English Dominicans
    Centre for Liturgy

    Liturgical odds and ends

    Saints of the Week

    25th August - St Louis of France
    27th August - St Monica
    28th August - St Augustine 
    29th August - The Beheading of St John the Baptist
    30th August - St Fiacre

    Aug 10, 2014

    Youth 2000 - Summer Festival 2014

    SS102fm has spoken to members of Y2K over the last few years and just a reminder that their upcoming summer festival is in Roscrea this year from 14th to 17th August.




    
    When will the festival take place?

    This year it is taking place from Thursday 14th – Sunday 17th August 2014. Registration will begin at 6pm on Thursday evening.

    Where will the festival take place and how do I get there?

    It will take place at Cistercian College, Mount Saint Joseph Abbey, Roscrea, Co. Tipperary. There are free buses from various locations around the country(online from June 2014). To book your place on the FREE BUS you MUST contact the relevant bus contact (booking online DOES NOT book your place on the bus.)

    What happens at the Youth 2000 Summer Festival?

    The Youth 2000 Summer Festival is full of variety. The festival includes inspiring talks, music, prayer, concert, workshops, dramas, share groups, reconciliation and healing service and Mass. It is a packed program but there is also time for chatting, sitting, relaxing, soccer and generally chilling out.

    Who can attend this?

    This is a youth event, so we are encouraging those aged between 16 - 35 years to attend. If you are over 35, this festival isn’t really for you although we do always need mature volunteers to help with the running the festival. If you're interested in coming along to help in some way, please contact the National Office on 01 6753690 to discuss this matter further. Any prospective volunteers will be required to be Garda vetted and referenced checked.



    
    Youth 2000 have recently joined iCatholic and have posted a number of videos online explaining who and what they are.


    Heroic Priesthood



    Holiness is heroism.

    Christ’s invitation to priesthood is an invitation to a way of life that is athletic in its intensity and heroic in its form.

    Discern the call.

    In this short film, produced by Word on Fire Catholic Ministries in partnership with Spirit Juice Studios, Father Robert Barron and the seminarians of Mundelein Seminary present the demands and the joy of the priestly vocation.

    Aug 7, 2014

    The Growing Popularity of Eucharistic Adoration

    In this short video, John Howard, the Coordinator of the Apostolate of Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration, amongst others, speak about the growing popularity of Eucharistic Adoration in Ireland.

    Aug 3, 2014

    August 3rd - Franciscan Friars of the Renewal - 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time

    As we had technical difficulties on our programme when Br. Frantisek's interview was due to be aired, we have decided that it was just too good to miss, so we are replaying it on our programme this week...

    On this week's programme we have the third and final part of our interview with the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal about their life and ministry. 

    You can listen to the podcast of this week's programme HERE

    Community of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal (Part 3)

                                                                                    This week we have the third and final part of our interview with the Franciscans Friars of the Renewal and this week we learn more about Br. Frantisek Marie and his vocation story.

    You can read more about the friars including the first and second part of this series of interviews HERE and HERE.

    You can listen to the interview excerpted from the main programme HERE.


    Gospel - Matthew 14:13-21
    When Jesus received this news he withdrew by boat to a lonely place where they could be by themselves. But the people heard of this and, leaving the towns, went after him on foot. So as he stepped ashore he saw a large crowd; and he took pity on them and healed their sick.

    When evening came, the disciples went to him and said, ‘This is a lonely place, and the time has slipped by; so send the people away, and they can go to the villages to buy themselves some food’. Jesus replied, ‘There is no need for them to go: give them something to eat yourselves’. But they answered ‘All we have with us is five loaves and two fish’. ‘Bring them here to me’ he said. He gave orders that the people were to sit down on the grass; then he took the five loaves and the two fish, raised his eyes to heaven and said the blessing. 


    And breaking the loaves handed them to his disciples who gave them to the crowds. They all ate as much as they wanted, and they collected the scraps remaining; twelve baskets full. Those who ate numbered about five thousand men, to say nothing of women and children.
     
    If we look at today's Gospel, it may remind us of the actions of the Mass.  We bring our offerings to God. Jesus took the bread and the fish, He blessed the meal, broke the loaves, gave it to his disciples.  The same action takes place during our celebration of the Mass.  We bring our offerings to God - not just the bread and wine - but our whole lives, ourselves, our relationships, our joys, our worries, our dreams, our hopes are all offered to God on the paten.  Jesus takes our offerings and blesses them.  He consecrates the bread and wine to become His Body and Blood.  He consecrates us as His Body, members of His Church.  Nourished at the Table of the Lord, Jesus commissions us to go out and to give others 'something to eat' (Mt 14:16).  What can we give others for nourishment?  We can give them ourselves, our time, our talents, our help, our love, our support, but most of all, we can give others Jesus.  Pope Benedict reminds us that "Each of us is truly called, together with Jesus, to be bread broken for the life of the world." (Sacramentum Caritatis  88).



    Thanks to the Diocese of Limerick Facebook page for bringing the following thought-provoking prayer to our attention:



    A Pastoral Prayer based on Sunday's Gospel:


    We come believing in our emptiness,
    believing that we will never have enough,
    believing that what we have is unworthy.

    We come fearful of sharing,
    fearful of losing our tenuous grip on security,
    fearful of touching and knowing the pain of others.

    We come overwhelmed by the hunger,
    overwhelmed by the suffering of children near and far,
    overwhelmed by the endless tales of senseless violence, greed, and death.

    We come aching from the weight of the responsibility,
    aching from the chilling challenge of knowing our abundance,
    aching from the gnawing awareness that we have much to share.

    We come clinging to our meager lunches;
    bless them, and us.
    break them, and us.
    share them, and us.

    Pastoral Prayer (inspired by Matthew 14:15-21, Mark 6:35-44, Luke 9:12-17, John 6:4-13)~ written by Katherine Hawker, on Liturgy Outside http://liturgyoutside.net/ From http://re-worship.blogspot.ie/


    Reflections on this week's gospel:
     
    Sunday Reflections
    English Dominicans
    Word on Fire

    Centre for Liturgy
     

    Liturgical odds and ends
     
    Liturgy of the Hours - 18th week in ordinary time; Psalter week 2
     
    Saints of the week
     
    August 4th - St. John Vianney (the Cure of Ars)

    August 5th - St. Addal
    August 6th - The Transfiguration of the Lord
    August 7th - St. Cajetan
    August 8th - St. Dominic
    August 9th - St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein), Patron of Europe