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St. Michael
St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray. And do you, O prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, cast into Hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen. Advertise Now

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REFLECTIONS

"Jesus' Baptism"

Why did Jesus, the sinless one sent from the Father in heaven, submit himself to John's baptism? John preached a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke 3:3). In this humble submission we see a foreshadowing of the "baptism" of Jesus bloody death upon the cross. Jesus' baptism is the acceptance and the beginning of his mission as God's suffering Servant (Isaiah 52:13-15; 53:1-12). He allowed himself to be numbered among sinners. Jesus submitted himself entirely to his Father's will. Out of love he consented to this baptism of death for the remission of our sins. Do you know the joy of trust and submission to God? Read More »

Jerusalem Church Leaders Speak on Easter

“So, as we celebrate the Resurrection we must be more diligent in searching for the light and in using it to build a better tomorrow for all of us, Palestinians or Israelis, Muslims, Jews, Christians and Druzes.”
This is the voice of the patriarchs and heads of local churches in Jerusalem as they spoke on Easter.
Below is a copy of their Easter message:

* * *

Sisters and brothers here and in all the world, we greet you in the name of our Risen Lord and ask God to fill you with the joy and the strength of the resurrection.

Having opposed early Christians and, indeed, sought to bring many of them to trial for their faith, St. Paul was suddenly challenged by our Blessed Lord as he journeyed to Damascus. Within a short time he became a powerful messenger for Jesus. Reading his various epistles we see he has much to say on many aspects of the Christian faith.

The statement he sets before the Philippians is regarded by many people as the most powerful: "All I want is to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and to share his sufferings."

In this short sentence he links the cross and the Resurrection. The sufferings he had to face for his faith lead him to become conscious of the power of the Resurrection given to those who truly believe, through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Yet again, recent months have shown us much of the hardships and sufferings people have to endure, not least in this land. Much of this burden has arisen from man's inhumanity to men together with the deprivation of basic human dignity and rights, all caused by the siege imposed upon us.

Our Blessed Lord challenges all of us; if we are to be his disciples we must take up our cross and follow him. In the midst of sufferings, we reach for the power of the Resurrection and the power of the Spirit that enables us to take away the oppressions that are imposed upon us.

So, as we celebrate the joy of Easter we must examine carefully where we stand in relation to God. Many of us need to abandon the selfish instinct within us. If we truly seek the power of the Resurrection in our lives, then we must disregard any idea we might have of self-sufficiency or worldly hopes that hide from our eyes the things of heaven and of the Spirit.

If we believe in the Resurrection, we must affirm that our security is with God and in the power of the Resurrection. Again St. Paul reminds us when writing to the Corinthians: "But we hold this treasure in earthen vessels, that the surpassing power may be of God and not from us" (2 Corinthians 4:7).

Despite our weakness and despite the unjust circumstances imposed upon us, the power of God can free us if we come to understand the logic of the Spirit in us and if we behave accordingly.

On the first Good Friday, the disciples of Jesus doubtlessly felt shattered. However, gradually their faith was restored as they became conscious of their Risen Lord. Their own personal darkness of fear and uncertainty was suddenly illuminated by the light of Jesus' resurrection.

So, as we celebrate the Resurrection we must be more diligent in searching for the light and in using it to build a better tomorrow for all of us, Palestinians or Israelis, Muslims, Jews, Christians and Druzes. We search for the light that comes from God, illuminates all creation, guides every true believer in his search to find God's freedom for all, together with his peace and justice.

As we greet our sisters and brothers across the world, we wish them the joy of Easter and the power of the Risen Lord in their daily lives. While conscious of the care and concern shown by many of you, we again ask for your particular prayers for this land, that God will guide all its governors and show them the path of justice and equality among all.

Pray for the newly formed Unity Government of the Palestinians together with the Israeli Government and the Arab Initiative, to work to remove fear and all oppression, the walls, the barriers and the prisons, so that hearts become full of trust and all can enjoy the same freedom and the same dignity.

Then we would ask that you make a particular effort to encourage your particular nation to stop the embargo imposed upon us and to restore its aid to the Palestinians. Many vital areas of community are in a desperate plight as a result of the withholding of this aid, not least [among them, areas of] justice, economy, medicine and education, etc. …

As all Christians across the world celebrate Easter together we wish everyone, at home and abroad, that joy which our Blessed Lord's resurrection brings. We ask God to bestow upon all the joy and the power of the resurrection so that the words of Jesus become real as he said: "I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly" (John 10:10).

Christ is Risen! He is risen indeed!
May you experience a happy and holy Easter!

Patriarchs and Heads of the Churches in Jerusalem

Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem
Patriarch Michel Sabbah, R.C. Latin
Patriarch Torkom I Manooghian, Armenian Orthodox

Father Pierbattista Pizzaballa, OFM, Custos of the Holy Land
Archbishop Anba Abraham, Coptic Orthodox
Archbishop Swerios Malki Murad, Syrian-Orthodox
Archbishop Abouna Mattias, Ethiopian Orthodox

Archbishop Paul Sayyah, Maronite
Bishop Suheil Dawani, Anglican
Bishop Munib Younan, Lutheran

Bishop Pierre Malki, Syrian-Catholic
Archbishop Georges Michel Bakar, Greek Catholic
Father Rafael Minassian, Armenian Catholic

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LIVES OF THE SAINTS

OCTOBER 1
ST. THERESA OF THE CHILD JESUS

St. Theresa, often called the Little Flower, was born in Normandy, France, in 1873. She was the youngest of the five daughters born to Louis and..Read More »

OCTOBER 3
ST. GERARD OF BROGNE

St. Gerard was born at the end of the ninth century in France. Read More »

OCTOBER 4
ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI

St. Francis was born around 1181. As a young man in his Italian hometown of Assisi. Read More »

OCTOBER 6
ST. BRUNO

St. Bruno was born around 1030. This founder of the Carthusian..Read More »

OCTOBER 6
BLESSED MARIE ROSE DUROCHER

Blessed Eulalie Durocher was born in 1811 in Quebec, Canada.Read More »

OCTOBER 7
OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY

It was St. Dominic in the late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries who encouraged everyone to say the Rosary.Read More »

OCTOBER 8
ST. SIMEON

St. Simeon lived in the first century. In Luke's Gospel, chapter two.Read More »

OCTOBER 9
ST. DENIS AND COMPANIONS

St. Denis is very popular in France. In fact, he is considered the patron saint of France.Read More »

OCTOBER 9
ST. JOHN LEONARDI

St. JOhn was born in 1541and became a pharmacist in Lucca, Italy. Read More »

OCTOBER 10
ELEVEN MARTYRS OF ALMERIA, SPAIN

The Spanish civil war began in 1936. It has been described as a struggle between atheism and belief in God. Read More »

OCTOBER 11
ST. KENNETH

St. Kenneth who is sometimes called St. Canice or Kenny, lived in the..Read More »

OCTOBER 12
ST. FELIX AND ST. CYPRIAN

Sts. Felix and Cyprian were African bishops who lived in the fifth..Read More »

OCTOBER 13
ST. EDWARD

King St. Edward was one of the best loved of all the English kings.Read More »

OCTOBER 14
ST. CALLISTUS I

St. Callisturi, the great pope and martyr, lived in the first part of the..Read More »

OCTOBER 15
ST. TERESA OF AVILA

St. Teresa was born in Avila, Spain, on March 28, 1515.Read More »

OCTOBER 16
ST. MARGARET MARY

St. Margaret Mary lived in the seventeenth century. She is the famous French nun to whom Jesus showed his.. Read More »

OCTOBER 17
ST. IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH

St. Ignatius of Antioch has been well-known since earliest times.Read More »

OCTOBER 18
ST. LUKE

St. Luke is generally believed to be a gentile doctor.Read More »

OCTOBER 19
ST. ISAAC JOGUES, ST. JOHN DE BREBEUF AND COMPANIONS--THE NORTH AMERICAN MARTYRS

Over three hundred years ago, six Jesuit priests and two holy laymen, all from France, died as martyrs here in North America.Read More »

OCTOBER 20
ST. PAUL OF THE CROSS

Paul Danei of Ovada, Italy, was born into a family of merchants in 1694Read More »

OCTOBER 21
ST. HILARION

St. Hilarion lived in the fourth century. He was an unbelieving teenager when he left his home in Palestine. Read More »

OCTOBER 22
BLESSED TIMOTHY GIACCARDO

Joseph Giaccardo was born on June 13, 1896, in Narzole, Italy. Read More »

OCTOBER 23
ST. JOHN CAPISTRANO

St. John Capistrano was born in Italy in 1386. He was a lawyer and governor of the city of Perugia. When enemies of the city threw John into prison, Read More »

OCTOBER 24
ST. ANTHONY CLARET

St. Anthony was born in Spain in 1807. It was the same year that Napoleon invaded the country. Perhaps that was a "hint" of the exciting Read More »

OCTOBER 25
BLESSED RICHARD GWYN

Blessed Richard was a Welshman who lived in the sixteenth century.Read More »

OCTOBER 26
ST. EVARISTUS

St. Evaristus lived in the second century. He was from a Jewish family in Bethlehem. They were living in Greece at the time of their son's birth. Read More »

OCTOBER 27
BLESSED CONTARDO FERRINI

Blessed Contardo was born in 1859. His father was a teacher of mathematics and physics.Read More »

OCTOBER 28
ST. SIMON AND ST. JUDE

These two apostles of Jesus are honored on the same day.Read More »

OCTOBER 29
ST. NARCISSUS

St. Narcissus lived in the second and early part of the third centuries.Read More »

OCTOBER 30
ST. ALPHONSUS RODRIGUEZ

St. Alphonsus, the Spanish saint, was born in 1553.Read More »

OCTOBER 31
ST. FOILLAN

St. Foillan was an Irish monk who lived in the seventh century. Read More »

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