16 Notes & Comments

posted Oct 5, 2017, 10:25 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Oct 5, 2017, 10:25 AM ]

Message of Fatima as important today as 100 years ago


Our Lady of Fatima's message about prayer, conversion and peace that she imparted to three shepherd children in a field in Portugal "is as important now, as it has ever been since" she appeared a century ago, a Connecticut bishop told Mass-goers September 23 in Washington.

"We come here to ask for her intercession," Bishop Frank J. Caggiano of Bridgeport said in his homily at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. "She might lead every human heart to answer the question, 'What is it that you are looking for?' And we will answer it: 'We are looking for your Son, and lead us to him.'"

The bishop was the main celebrant at the Mass, which drew a capacity crowd to the national shrine's Upper Church. After Mass ended, Bishop Caggiano led a procession of concelebrants, deacons, altar servers and the congregation to a new Rosary walk and garden near the shrine. As they walked, people recited aloud the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary.


Pray to the archangels


The archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael help encourage and accompany Christians on life's journey and defend them from the devil, Pope Francis said.

While the three archangels serve the Lord and contemplate His glory, God also "sends them to accompany us on the road of life," the Pope said in his homily at morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, Sept. 29, the archangels' feast day.

They have "an important role in our journey towards salvation," he said. For instance, Michael has been tasked with waging war against the devil, who is a "nuisance in our life."

The devil seduces everyone, like he did Eve, with convincing arguments and temptations, the Pope said.


Home for AIDS orphans offers ray of hope


At the age of 18, Shraddha* hopes to become a teacher and is busy completing her Diploma in Education. She scored over 85 per cent in her grade 12 subjects, and is also good at singing and dancing. But she is a special child, orphaned by AIDS.

She lost her father in 2007, and her mother in 2010 to AIDS. Shraddha and her younger sister Sweta*, were left orphans in Nagpur city in western India. Within days of their mother's death, Sr Pooja Kollamparambil took the girls to Asha Kiran (ray of hope), a home for children that the nun manages in Mhasala village, on the outskirts of Nagpur. It takes care of children orphaned by AIDS.

If the nun had "not found us, we might have landed up in a brothel," Shraddha said.


Internet pornography 'pernicious'


Catholic columnist and Parish Priest Alexander Lucie-Smith has raised concerns over the widespread availability of pornography on the internet, and said many in the Church will not accept that pornography use is "near universal" among boys and young men, writes Bernadette Kehoe.

Addressing the annual Ordinariate festival, in a talk entitled 'Preaching the Gospel in the Internet Age', Fr Lucie-Smith argued that the "pernicious" effect of pornography meant a generation was growing up unable to embark on a proper human relationship. He called for "an urgent, proper proclamation of the sixth commandment, and a radical new approach to sex education, marriage preparation and education for chastity." Organisers of the festival, which took place at a school near Westminster Cathedral, said that the question-and-answer session after the talk showed that he had struck a chord with many of the priests present – and their experience in the confessional.