Attending my first Mass at the age of 19 was a peculiar experience. The bells and smells were all new to me, as were the collective prayers. But most striking were two other facets of the Mass: the centrality of the sacraments and the reverence in which the Mass was celebrated.
May 21, Sixth Sunday of Easter —
First reading: Acts 8:5-8, 14-17;
Second reading: 1 Peter 3:15-18;
Gospel: John 14:15-21
Christ’s resurrection being “unnoticed” by civil and religious would not have happened due to guards that reported back to the chief priests.
c. 1070-1130 FEAST May 15 A humble peasant born near Madrid, Spain, Isidore married and worked the same fields all his life. The couple was said to have lived celibately after their young son died. Always devout, Isidore visited church on his way t work, prayed while ploughing and made local pilgrimages. Legends associate him […]
1837-1881 FEAST May 14 An Italian peasant, Mary worked long hours in the fields and vineyards. She attended Mass frequently and joined a sodality whose members in 1860 were asked to nurse typhoid victims. Mary caught the fever and nearly died. Because of weakened health, she started a dressmaking business to employ local girls. This […]
20th Century FEAST May 13 Mary appeared to three peasant children near Fatima, Portugal, six times between May 13 and October 13, 1917, and asked for prayers for world peace and an end to World War I, for sinners, and for the conversion of Russia. She entrusted the children with three secrets, regarding devotion to […]
died circa 304 FEAST May 12 According to an early legend, the Roman martyr Pancras was a native of Syria or Phrygia (now Turkey) brought to Rome by an uncle after he was orphaned. They converted to Christianity there and were martyred during the persecution of Emperor Diocletian. Pancras reportedly was only 14, the likely […]
Pope Francis has spent his papacy reflecting on the role of mothers in society and trying to bring that maternal warmth to the Catholic Church.
Q. Is it true that men born out of wedlock cannot enter the priesthood? (Philadelphia) A. No, that is not true. But your question does reflect a lengthy period in the church’s history when illegitimacy was ruled a barrier. The Council of Poitiers, under Pope Paschal II, determined in the late 11th century that being […]
1642-1716 FEAST May 11 Already a priest in Naples, Italy, Francis entered the Society of Jesus at age 28. From 1676 until his death, this Jesuit missioner, who wanted to evangelize in Japan, served in Naples and the surrounding countryside. A renowned preacher, he was said to be “a lamb when he talks and a […]