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Sunday, January 10th. Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St Luke 3:15-16.21-22.


The Baptism of the Lord – Feast

10 January 2016

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ  

“You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

lwjas0059 FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFHoly Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 3:15-16.21-22.

The people were filled with expectation, and all were asking in their hearts whether John might be the Christ.
John answered them all, saying, “I am baptizing you with water, but one mightier than I is coming. I am not worthy to loosen the thongs of his sandals. He will baptize you with the holy Spirit and fire.
After all the people had been baptized and Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, heaven was opened
and the holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

Image: From Biblehub

SUNDAY MASS – Catholic Mass – January 10, 2016 

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The Baptism of the Lord – Feast

10 January 2016

The Baptism of the Lord – Feast

Icone_Bapteme-du-Seigneur JESUS Baptism

THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD
(Feast)

Jesus’ public life begins with his baptism by John in the Jordan.

John preaches “a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins”. A crowd of sinners – tax collectors and soldiers, Pharisees and Sadducees, and prostitutes – come to be baptized by him. “Then Jesus appears.” the Baptist hesitates, but Jesus insists and receives baptism. Then the Holy Spirit, in the form of a dove, comes upon Jesus and a voice from heaven proclaims, “This is my beloved Son.” This is the manifestation (“Epiphany”) of Jesus as Messiah of Israel and Son of God.

The baptism of Jesus is on his part the acceptance and inauguration of his mission as God’s suffering Servant. He allows himself to be numbered among sinners; he is already “the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world”. Already he is anticipating the “baptism” of his bloody death. Already he is coming to “fulfil all righteousness”, that is, he is submitting himself entirely to his Father’s will: out of love he consents to this baptism of death for the remission of our sins. The Father’s voice responds to the Son’s acceptance, proclaiming his entire delight in his Son. The Spirit whom Jesus possessed in fullness from his conception comes to “rest on him”. Jesus will be the source of the Spirit for all mankind. At his baptism “the heavens were opened” – the heavens that Adam’s sin had closed – and the waters were sanctified by the descent of Jesus and the Spirit, a prelude to the new creation.

Through Baptism the Christian is sacramentally assimilated to Jesus, who in his own baptism anticipates his death and resurrection. the Christian must enter into this mystery of humble self-abasement and repentance, go down into the water with Jesus in order to rise with him, be reborn of water and the Spirit so as to become the Father’s beloved son in the Son and “walk in newness of life”:

Let us be buried with Christ by Baptism to rise with him; let us go down with him to be raised with him; and let us rise with him to be glorified with him. (St. Gregory of Nazianzus, Oratio 40, 9: PG 36, 369)

Everything that happened to Christ lets us know that, after the bath of water, the Holy Spirit swoops down upon us from high heaven and that, adopted by the Father’s voice, we become sons of God.(St. Hilary of Poitiers, In Matth. 2, 5: PL 9, 927)

Catechism of the Catholic Church, § 535-537

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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The Baptism of the Lord – Feast

10 January 2016

Saints of the day

St. Léonie Aviat, Religious (1844-1914)

Santa_Francesca

Saint Françoise De Sales (Léonie Aviat)
Religious
(1844-1914)

 

Léonie Aviat was born in Sézanne, in the region of Champagne (France) on September 16, 1844. She attended school at the Monastery of the Visitation in the city of Troyes, where Mother Marie de Sales Chappuis, the superior, and Father Louis Brisson, the chaplain, exerted a decisive influence on her. Having thus been formed at the school of St. Francis de Sales, she prepared herself for the mission with which she was to be entrusted: the foundation of a Congregation committed to the Salesian spirituality and to the evangelization of young workers.

The beginnings came in the year 1866. This was the time when large industrial concerns were attracting an underpaid labor force to the cities. This was also the case in the city of Troyes, where textile mills engaged young girls of rural extraction. Father Brisson, a zealous apostle and already one of the forerunners of the great social movement that developed at the end of the 19th century, had opened a center, in 1858, to welcome young girls working in the textile mills in order to give them a complete education, both human and Christian. Unable to find a suitable directress and a stable supervisory staff for this center, known as the “Oeuvre Saint-François de Sales”, with God’s inspiration, he decided to establish a religious congregation. He found in Léonie Aviat an incomparable co-worker, in whom he discerned a vocation to the consecrated life as well. Indeed, upon completing her studies, the young lady left the Visitation monastery with the firm intention of returning to it as a lay Sister. But Father Brisson and Mother Chappuis advised her to wait. Obedient to what she regarded as God’s will, she received a special sign from Him a little later, one that couldn’t be mistaken for an illusion: obliged to go to the factory, where glasses were manufactured and repaired, in Sézanne, her native city, an inspiration enlightened her mind and guided her decision. The sight of the workroom filled with young factory workers busily engaged in their work beneath the watchful and maternal gaze of a supervisor aroused in her heart the desire to take her place among them in order to counsel and guide them. This attraction would press her even more strongly the day that Father Brisson invited her to visit the “Oeuvre ouvrière” which he had founded in Troyes.

   On April 18, 1866, she joined the “Oeuvre Saint-François de Sales”, with one of her former classmates of the Visitation, Lucie Canuet.

        On October 30, 1868, the young foundress was clothed with the religious habit and received the name of Sister Françoise de Sales. This name was a sign indicating what would be her life’s work, as she herself expressed it in the form of a prayer in her personal notes: “St. Francis de Sales, you have chosen me to be at the head of this little group; give me your spirit, your heart… Grant me a share of your union with God and of that interior spirit which knows how to do everything in union with Him and nothing without Him” (August, 1871). The “little group” which she guided placed itself under the protection of the saintly Bishop of Geneva and completely adopted his method of spirituality and of pedagogy; hence, the name that it chose for itself: the “Oblate Sisters of St. Francis de Sales”, which means offered to God and to the neighbor by means of their whole life.

        On October 11, 1871, Sister Françoise de Sales professed her vows, and the following year, she was elected Superior General of the new Congregation which was thus canonically established and able to expand rapidly. Under her guidance, the community grew in numbers, and the social apostolate developed. At the same time, grade schools were opened in parishes, and in Paris the first boarding school for young ladies was also opened, an establishment which Mother Aviat directed for eight years. The apostolate of the Oblate Sisters thus extended to the different classes of society and to all forms of education, and, from the very first years of its foundation, to the missions ad gentes as well.

In 1893, after a period of effacement which brought to light her humility, Mother Françoise de Sales was again elected Superior General, an office she held until her death. During this time, she endeavored to develop the apostolate of the Congregation in Europe, South Africa, and Ecuador, while lavishing her untiring solicitude on every community and on each of her Sisters. In 1903, she had to cope with the persecution directed against religious orders in France. While maintaining the houses of her Congregation that could be maintained in France, she transferred the Mother House to Perugia, Italy. In 1911, she secured the final approbation of the Constitutions of the Institute from Pope St. Pius X.

On January 10, 1914, she died in Perugia with serenity, totally entrusting herself to God. To the very end, she remained faithful to the resolution made at the time of her Profession: “To forget myself entirely”. To her daughters in every age, she left this very Salesian precept: “Let us work for the happiness of others”.

        She was beatified on September 27, 1992 and canonized on November 25, 2001 at Rome by John Paul II.

– Copyright © Libreria Editrice Vaticana
©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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The Baptism of the Lord – Feast

10 January 2016

Saints of the day

St. William of Bourges, Archbishop († 1209)

SAINT WILLIAM
Archbishop
(† 1209)

        William Berruyer, of the illustrious family of the ancient Counts of Nevers, was educated by Peter the Hermit, Archdeacon of Soissons, his uncle by the mother’s side. From his infancy William learned to despise the folly and emptiness of the world, to abhor its pleasures, and to tremble at its dangers. His only delight was in exercises of piety and in his studies, in which he employed his whole time with indefatigable application.

He was made canon, first of Soissons and afterwards of Paris; but he soon resolved to abandon the world, and retired into the solitude of Grandmont, where he lived with great regularity in that austere Order until finally he joined the Cistercians, then in wonderful odor of sanctity. After some time he was chosen Prior of the Abbey of Pontigny, and afterwards became Abbot of Chaalis.

        On the death of Henri de Sully, Archbishop of Bourges, William was chosen to succeed him. The announcement of this new dignity which had fallen on him overwhelmed him with grief, and he would not have accepted the office had not the Pope and his General, the Abbot of Citeaux, commanded him to do so.

His first care in his new position was to conform his life to the most perfect rules of sanctity. He redoubled all his austerities, saying it was incumbent on him now to do penance for others as well as for himself. He always wore a hair-shirt under his religious habit, and never added to his clothing in winter or diminished it in summer; he never ate any flesh-meat, though he had it at his table for strangers.

        When he drew near his end, he was, at his request, laid on ashes in his hair-cloth, and in this posture expired on the 10th of January, 1209. His body was interred in his cathedral, and, being honored by many miracles, was taken up in 1217, and in the year following William was canonized by Pope Honorius III.

Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. [1894]

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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The Baptism of the Lord – Feast

10 January 2016

Saints of the day

Bl. María Dolores Rodríguez Sopeña (1848-1918)

Beata_Maria_Dolores_Rodriguez_Sopena

Blessed María Dolores Rodríguez Sopeña
(1848-1918)

        Dolores Rodríguez Sopeña was born in Velez Rubio, Almería, Spain, on December 30, 1848, the fourth of seven siblings. Her parents, Tomas Rodríguez Sopeña and Nicolasa Ortega Salomon, had moved from Madrid to Velez Rubio due to employment. Don Tomas had received his law degree at a young age, and because of this, could not work as a lawyer. He was able to find employment as an administrator of the Marqueses de Velez farms.

        She grew up in the Andalucía region where her father began to work as a magistrate, an even though he was transferred often, she defined this time of her life as a “lake of tranquility”.

In 1866, her father was named Judge of Almería. Dolores was 17, and was formally introduced to society, though she did not enjoy the parties or the social life. Her interest was in doing good for others. In Almería, she had her first apostolic experiences: she attended, materially and spiritually, to two sisters who had typhoid fever, and to a leper. She kept this hidden from her parents because she was afraid that they might forbid her from continuing her work. She also visited the poor of Saint Vicent de Paul with her mother. Three years later her father was sent to Puerto Rico. There he traveled with one of his sons while the rest of his family moved to Madrid. Dolores chose a spiritual advisor, and began teaching the Catholic doctrine to women in prison, in the Princess Hospital, and in the Sunday Schools.

In 1872, the family reunited in Puerto Rico. Dolores was 23 years old and would remain in the Americas’ until she was 28. She began her contact with the Jesuits and Father Goicoechea became her spiritual advisor. In Puerto Rico, she founded the Association of the Sodality of the Virgin Mary and the schools for the disadvantaged where she taught reading and writing, as well as catechism.

        In 1873, her father was named state attorney of Santiago de Cuba. These were difficult times, because a religious schism was raging on the island. Because of this, her actions were curtailed to visiting the sick in a military hospital. She requested admission into the Sister of Charity community but was not admitted due to her poor eye sight. At the age of 8, Dolores had an eye operation and this disability remained with her the rest of her life.

At the conclusion of the schism, she began working in the poor neighborhoods and founded the “Centers of Instruction”. There she taught catechism, general instruction, and provided medical assistance to those in need. For these efforts she was able to get much assistance and was able to establish the centers in three different neighborhoods.

        Her mother died in Cuba, and her father requested his retirement. The family returned to Madrid in 1877. In Madrid she organized her life on three fronts: her home and the care of her father, her apostolic work (the same work she did before leaving Spain) and her spiritual life (she chose a spiritual advisor and annually participated in Saint Ignatius Spiritual Retreat). In 1883 her father died, and once again she began to struggle with her vocation.

At the advice of her spiritual advisor, Father López Soldado, S.I., she entered the convent of the Salesians, even though she had never thought of devoting her whole life to contemplation. After 10 days she left the convent as she came to the realization that this was not her vocation. She then began to give all of her attention to her apostolic work.

        In 1885, Dolores opened a center similar to modern social work centers. There, the poor and the needy were able to take their issues and concerns were addressed and resolved. During one of her visits, to one of the women prisoners that had just being released, she gets to know the neighborhood of the Injurias.

When she saw the moral, material and spiritual condition of the people, she began visiting this neighborhood every week and invited many of her friends to help her with her work. There she began the organization “Works of the Doctrines”, later named “Center for the Workers”.

        In 1892, at the suggestion of the Bishop of Madrid, D. Ciríaco Sancha, she founded the Association of the Apostolic Laymen (which today is known as the Sopeña Lay Movement). The following year she received approval from the government which allowed her to expand her work to 8 neighborhoods of Madrid.

In 1896 she began her activities outside Madrid. In 4 years she took 199 trips all over Spain to establish and consolidate the “Works of the Doctrines”. At the same time she accompanied Father Tarin to Andalucía to help in the missions.

        In 1900, Dolores participated in a pilgrimage to Rome for the celebration of the Holy Year. There she took part in a retreat at the Saint Peter’s tomb and received approval to establish a Religious Institute that would provide continuation of her “Work of Doctrines” and help to sustain spiritually the Sopeña Lay Movement. Cardinal Sancha, then Archbishop of Toledo, proposed founding it there.

The “Ladies of Catechistical Institute” was founded On September 24, 1901. Dolores with 8 companions had just participated in Spiritual Exercises, in Loyola, where St. Ignatius was born and in the city of Toledo, on October 31 they started living as a religious community.

        One of the greatest inspirations that Dolores had was to establish at the same time, the Civil Association which today is known as OSCUS or Social & Cultural Work Sopeña. In 1902 the Association was officially recognized by the Spanish government.

  In 1905, the Institute received from the Holy See the Degree of Praise. Two years later, on November 21, 1907, Dolores received the approval directly from Pope Pius X. Today the Institute is known as the “Sopeña Catechetical Institute”.

        During these years, her “Works of the Doctrines” were slowly changed to Centers for Workers’ Instruction. These occurred because many of the workers that participated in the Centers were influenced by the anti-cleric sentiments and the instruction could not be called religious out right. The anti clerical sentiment was an important facet in the decision for the religious community of this Institute not to wear a ‘habit’ and did not to wear any outward sign of religion. These changes were made with the end result in mind: to get close to the workers who were “alienated from the church”, that had been unable to receive any cultural, moral or religious instruction and to unite those socially distant.

        One of the main objectives of the centers were to bring people together to give them an opportunity to learn from each other. These encounters would result in mutual respect and a desire to help each other.

        Her deep faith, rich in spirituality was the reason for her commitment to the service to others. Her commitment to the dignity of people was born through her experience that God the Father of all, who loves us with infinite tenderness and who wishes for us to live as sons and brothers and sisters, was the driving force behind all that she did. From there, she had a great desire to “Make of all, one family in Christ Jesus”. Her total immersion in Christ allowed her to see Him in everything and feel Him in everyone, especially in those that were in the most need of dignity and love.

        Towards the end of the 19th century, it was inconceivable to find a woman, who would go out to work in the poor neighborhood. The secret of her fearlessness was her deep faith, her confidence without limit. She recognized this as her greatest treasure, and it made her feel that she had become the instrument of God’s work, the instrument of love, hope, dignity, and justice.

    In a few years, she was able to established communities and centers in industrialized cities. In 1910 the community celebrated the first General Chapter and Dolores was reelected Superior General. In 1914 she founded a community in Rome and in 1917 opened their first house in the Americas.

        The following year, on January 10, 1918, Dolores Sopeña died in Madrid. Talk had already began of her being a saint.

        On July 11, 1992, John Paul II declared Dolores’ life work heroic and on April 23, 2002 he certified the miracle attributed to Dolores Sopeña which advanced her to beatification status.

        Currently the Sopeña Family which encompasses the three institutions founded by Dolores Sopeña are: the Sopeña Catechetical Institute, The Sopeña Lay Movement and the Sopeña Social and Cultural Work, can be found in Spain, Italy, Argentina, Colombia, Cuba, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico and the Dominican Republic.

– Copyright © Libreria Editrice Vaticana

©Evangelizo.org 2001-2016

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“Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature.”

Mark 16:15-20

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