From John Paul, a message for our time—and all times

The great pontiff’s feast day is today, and you’ll find this inspiring (and timely) gift in the Office of Readings, from his first homily as pope: The new Successor of Peter in the See of Rome today makes a fervent, humble and trusting prayer: Christ, make me become and remain the servant of your unique [Read More…]

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Pope Francis at Ground Zero: “O God of love, compassion and healing…”

  View image | gettyimages.com   Pope Francis’s Prayer at Ground Zero   [Full program here] O God of love, compassion, and healing, look on us, people of many different faiths and religious traditions, who gather today on this hallowed ground, the scene of unspeakable violence and pain. We ask you in your goodness to give [Read More…]

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Pope makes unscheduled trip for private meeting with Little Sisters of the Poor in Washington

I presided at a Holy Hour and Benediction at a facility run by the Little Sisters of the Poor in Queens last night, and one of the sisters mentioned something about this to me. “The Holy Father is visiting us in Washington,” she said discreetly, “but no one is supposed to know.” I didn’t think much of [Read More…]

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St. Monica, pray for us

Today is the feast day of the mother of St. Augustine. I’ve always loved this image of her, from the great John Nava, who created the stunning tapestries of the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Los Angeles. The picture here comes from the website for the Church of St. Monica in the Diocese of Trenton, New [Read More…]

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St. John Vianney, pray for parish priests

From today’s Office of Readings, on the Feast of St. John Vianney, some wise words from the saint himself: “My little children, reflect on these words: the Christian’s treasure is not on earth but in heaven. Our thoughts, then, ought to be directed to where our treasure is. This is the glorious duty of man: [Read More…]

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“Pray for mercy, pray for healing”

That was the consistent message of this afternoon’s Holy Hour in the Archdiocese of New York, held at the beautiful Church and Priory of St. Vincent Ferrer.  This placid house of prayer on Lexington Ave., staffed by the Dominicans, proved the perfect setting for an hour devoted to contemplation and adoration—and its staggering beauty easily [Read More…]

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I’ll be there. Will you?

As luck (or the Holy Spirit) would have it, my office closes early tomorrow and I’ll be able to take the short walk from my desk to this beautiful church for a special Holy Hour. Won’t you join me? If not with your presence, with your prayers? From Kathryn Jean Lopez: We must pray unceasingly [Read More…]

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Cardinal O’Malley speaks out on Planned Parenthood and “the throwaway culture”

The USCCB has just released this statement from Cardinal O’Malley regarding recent news about Planned Parenthood: WASHINGTON—Cardinal Seán O’Malley, OFM Cap., archbishop of Boston and chairman of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), responded, July 29, to recent videos showing leaders from Planned Parenthood discussing the provision of [Read More…]

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Why does mercy matter?

View image | gettyimages.com A timely reminder from today’s Office of Readings. This comes from a sermon by Saint Caesarius of Arles: Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy. My brothers and sisters, sweet is the thought of mercy, but even more so is mercy itself. It is what all men hope for, but [Read More…]

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Sign of hope

Flying out of New York’s LaGuardia Airport yesterday, this sign caught my eye: It’s a reminder of the invaluable airport chaplaincy that serves so many faithful travelers shuttling around the world. (That sign dissolved into another message: “God Bless Our Troops,” which made me wonder how much longer such a shockingly religious message will be [Read More…]

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