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March 27, 2008
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June 29: Feast of Saints Peter and Paul
"Peter and Paul represent two strikingly different approaches to discipleship. Peter had to learn slowly, make many mistakes along the way, but always experienced the compassionate forgiveness and encouragement of Jesus . Paul, on the other hand, came to the Faith immediately and never backed away from his zeal for Christ."  [Ss. Peter & Paul The Apostles]

July 1: Feast of Blessed Junípero Serra
"Junípero Serra is known and appreciated as the builder of the California missions. On a purely human level, this accomplishment would make him a significant figure in history. But behind the work lies the spiritual sources that animated the heart of Blessed Junípero. He had a great heart for God. His dream was to establish missions from Baja, California all the way to Alaska. This evangelical zeal was the fruit of his abiding in the Church’s tradition—particularly in the tradition of Spanish Catholicism, in the tradition of the Franciscan order, and in the tradition of the grace of Our Lady of Guadalupe." [Catholic.net]

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FOR MY YOKE IS EASY, AND MY BURDEN LIGHT.

Difficulties and sorrows, if accepted out of love, are transformed into a privileged way of holiness, which opens onto the horizons of a greater good, known only to the Lord.

The Gospel for Sunday, July 3, 2005
Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Mt 11:25-30

"For my yoke is easy and my burden light" (Mt 11,30).

Jesus' words to his disciples, which we just heard, help us to understand the most important message of this solemn celebration. Indeed, in a certain sense, we can consider them as a magnificent summary of the whole life of Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, today proclaimed a saint.

The evangelical image of the "yoke" recalls the many trials that the humble Capuchin of San Giovanni Rotondo had to face. Today we contemplate in him how gentle the "yoke" of Christ is, and how truly light is his burden when it is borne with faithful love. The life and mission of Padre Pio prove that difficulties and sorrows, if accepted out of love, are transformed into a privileged way of holiness, which opens onto the horizons of a greater good, known only to the Lord."

But may I never boast except in the cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ" (Gal 6,14).

Is it not, precisely, the "glory of the Cross" that shines above all in Padre Pio? How timely is the spirituality of the Cross lived by the humble Capuchin of Pietrelcina. Our time needs to rediscover the value of the Cross in order to open the heart to hope.

Throughout his life, he always sought greater conformity with the Crucified, since he was very conscious of having been called to collaborate in a special way in the work of redemption. His holiness cannot be understood without this constant reference to the Cross.

In God's plan, the Cross constitutes the true instrument of salvation for the whole of humanity and the way clearly offered by the Lord to those who wish to follow him (cf. Mk 16,24). The Holy Franciscan of the Gargano understood this well, when on the Feast of the Assumption in 1914, he wrote: "In order to succeed in reaching our ultimate end we must follow the divine Head, who does not wish to lead the chosen soul on any way other than the one he followed; by that, I say, of abnegation and the Cross" (Epistolario II, p. 155).

"I am the Lord who acts with mercy" (Jer 9,23).

Padre Pio was a generous dispenser of divine mercy, making himself available to all by welcoming them, by spiritual direction and, especially, by the administration of the sacrament of Penance. I also had the privilege, during my young years, of benefitting from his availability for penitents. The ministry of the confessional, which is one of the distinctive traits of his apostolate, attracted great crowds of the faithful to the monastery of San Giovanni Rotondo. Even when that unusual confessor treated pilgrims with apparent severity, the latter, becoming conscious of the gravity of sins and sincerely repentant, almost always came back for the peaceful embrace of sacramental forgiveness. May his example encourage priests to carry out with joy and zeal this ministry which is so important today...

June 27, 2005

Excerpted from Pope John Paul II’s homily at the canonization of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina, Capuchin Priest, on June 16, 2002.

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06.27.05   Godspy says:
Difficulties and sorrows, if accepted out of love, are transformed into a privileged way of holiness, which opens onto the horizons of a greater good, known only to the Lord.

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