Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Litany of the Holy Name of Jesus

V. Lord, have mercy on us.
R. Christ, have mercy on us.
V. Lord, have mercy on us. Jesus, hear us.
R. Jesus, graciously hear us.
V. God the Father of Heaven
R. Have mercy on us.
V. God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
R. Have mercy on us.
V. God the Holy Ghost,
R. Have mercy on us.
V. Holy Trinity, one God,
R. Have mercy on us.
V. Jesus, Son of the living God, R. Have mercy on us.
Jesus, splendor of the Father, [etc.]
Jesus, brightness of eternal light.
Jesus, King of glory.
Jesus, sun of justice.
Jesus, Son of the Virgin Mary.
Jesus, most amiable.
Jesus, most admirable.
Jesus, the mighty God.
Jesus, Father of the world to come.
Jesus, angel of great counsel.
Jesus, most powerful.
Jesus, most patient.
Jesus, most obedient.
Jesus, meek and humble of heart.
Jesus, lover of chastity.
Jesus, lover of us.
Jesus, God of peace.
Jesus, author of life.
Jesus, example of virtues.
Jesus, zealous lover of souls.
Jesus, our God.
Jesus, our refuge.
Jesus, father of the poor.
Jesus, treasure of the faithful.
Jesus, good Shepherd.
Jesus, true light.
Jesus, eternal wisdom.
Jesus, infinite goodness.
Jesus, our way and our life.
Jesus, joy of Angels.
Jesus, King of the Patriarchs.
Jesus, Master of the Apostles.
Jesus, teacher of the Evangelists.
Jesus, strength of Martyrs.
Jesus, light of Confessors.
Jesus, purity of Virgins.
Jesus, crown of all Saints.

V. Be merciful unto us, R. spare us, O Jesus.
V. Be merciful unto us, R. graciously hear us, O Jesus.

V. From all evil, R. deliver us, O Jesus.
From all sin, deliver us, O Jesus.
From Thy wrath, [etc.]
From the snares of the devil.
From the spirit of uncleanness.
From everlasting death.
From the neglect of Thine inspirations.
Through the mystery of Thy holy Incarnation.
Through Thy Nativity.
Through Thy Infancy.
Through Thy most divine Life.
Through Thy labors.
Through Thine agony and passion.
Through Thy cross and dereliction.
Through Thy faintness and weariness.
Through Thy death and burial.
Through Thy Resurrection.
Through Thine Ascension.
Through Thine institution of the most Holy Eucharist.
Through Thy joys.
Through Thy glory.

V. Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
R. spare us, O Jesus.
V. Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
R. graciously hear us, O Jesus.
V. Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
R. have mercy on us, O Jesus.

V. Jesus, hear us.
R. Jesus, graciously hear us.

Let us pray.

O Lord Jesus Christ, Who saidst, "Ask and ye shall receive, seek, and ye shall find, knock, and it shall be opened unto you." Grant, we beseech Thee, to us Thy suppliants, the gift of Thy most divine love, that we may love Thee with our whole heart, and in all our words and works, and never cease from praising Thee.

O Lord, give us a perpetual fear as well as love of Thy Holy Name, for Thou never ceasest to govern those Thou foundest upon the strength of Thy love. Who livest and reignest world without end.

R. Amen.

Parishioner banned from Kansas City diocese properties for interactions with children

Image result for Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. JosephThe Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph has banned a longtime parishioner from all church property for violating “safe boundaries” in his interactions with children.

The parishioner acknowledged in an interview that he had violated an agreement to stay away from children, but said he’d done nothing inappropriate.

The 70-year-old man was a parishioner at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Kansas City, North — the parish of former priest Shawn Ratigan, whose child pornography scandal led to the conviction of then-Bishop Robert Finn for failing to report suspected child abuse.

“Today, I must share difficult news with you,” wrote the Rev. Robert H. Stewart, the pastor of St. Patrick’s, in a Dec. 20 letter to families of students at the school. He said the parishioner “has been asked and has agreed not to return to the parish, and not to visit any other property owned or operated by the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, its parishes or schools.”

The decision, Stewart wrote, was made “following careful consideration by our parish, school and diocesan leaders, including the Office of Child and Youth Protection.”

The letter indicated that the diocese had been monitoring the man.

“In the course of (his) involvement at St. Patrick’s, concerns were raised about his interactions with children,” Stewart wrote. “The parish staff has been working with him to establish clear and appropriate boundaries, including a written agreement for safe boundaries.

“Sadly, this has proved to be ineffective.”

The letter stressed, however, that “although safe boundaries were violated, there have been no reports or allegations of criminal behavior.”

In a phone call Wednesday, the parishioner told The Star that the diocese had put him on a “safety plan” in 2009. The Star is not using his name because he has not been charged with a crime.

“They amended it back in 2013, and I was told not to do certain things there,” the man said. “They called me in on the 19th of December and said that the safety plan was being violated on numerous occasions, and recently what happened, a couple of kids came down to help me clean up, and like a dummy, I said, ‘Sure, you can help.’ I shouldn’t have done that.”

He said he had been cleaning up after a “Coffee and Theology” session that followed an 11 a.m. Mass.

“I wasn’t supposed to have any contact with kids under 21,” he said. “So somebody saw it and reported it, and that’s their responsibility, I guess.”

Diocesan spokesman Jack Smith told The Star that “we cannot discuss details about this specific case because it involves a private individual against whom there have been no allegations of abuse or criminal behavior.” 

He said in an email that the letter was sent “in order to promote transparency, while also allowing parents to have age-appropriate conversations with their children based upon their own known interactions with him.”

“We ask our members to contact civil authorities directly with concerns they may have about safety within the community,” Smith said. “The diocese is committed to the protection of children, youth and vulnerable adults. We cannot tolerate any behavior that compromises a safe environment.”

Smith said the diocese’s safety plans are administered at the parish and school level in consultation with the Office of Child and Youth Protection, the Catholic Schools Office and other diocesan leaders. The diocese’s Independent Review Board is informed of individual safety plans, he said.

Stewart is a member of the review board, according to the diocese’s website. Other members include former Kansas City Police Chief James Corwin and former deputy chief Cy Ritter.

Smith said the diocese could not comment on whether the parishioner’s behavior was reported to police or the Missouri child abuse hotline but added that the diocese’s ombudsman, in partnership with the Office of Child and Youth Protection, “has committed to contact authorities in each and every instance where there is a suspicion of abuse.”

Smith said the letter about the man was originally sent by email to families at St. Patrick School. A second letter, he said, was mailed to all parish families, and the issue was discussed during the weekend Mass. The diocese also is notifying other parishes about the ban, he said.

The diocese is aware of one family that has withdrawn its children from the school because of the issue, Smith said.

“We respect their decision in doing what they feel is best for their family,” he said.

The news about the diocese action angered some parents of children at St. Patrick School and victims’ rights advocates who wanted to know why the man had access to children if diocesan officials had concerns serious enough to warrant monitoring him.

“What I find troubling is that once again it is all about their standards and needs,” said Barbara Dorris, outreach director for the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests. 

“Isn’t this what has gotten them into trouble in the past? Their policies seem to trump the laws of the state. Shouldn’t an organization with their track record err on the side of caution and bring in outside professionals and turn the investigation over to them?”

The man said he’d been a member of St. Patrick’s parish since at least 1980. He’s retired, he said, and lives near the church and school.

He said he’d been a longtime volunteer at the church.

“I’m a lector,” he said. “And I was the Eucharist minister before a balance problem kind of took me away from that.”

Asking him to never step foot on church property, the man said, “is the only way to protect the children, because being who I am, when people ask for help — adults, children, whoever — my first reaction is to say yes, and help them or accept help from them.

“Basically, I treated other people’s kids like they were my kids,” he said. “And I did not have that right. I’ve accepted my punishment there. It’s severe, but God has plans.”

He said he would abide by the agreement to stay away but thinks the diocese is being overly sensitive because of the Ratigan case.

The child sexual abuse scandal erupted at St. Patrick’s after a computer technician discovered hundreds of lewd photos of young girls on Ratigan’s laptop in December 2010. 

A Jackson County judge later found Finn guilty of failing to report suspected child abuse to police or state child welfare authorities after the discovery of the photographs. 

Finn was sentenced to two years of probation for the misdemeanor with the agreement that the charges would be expunged from his record if he completed probation without incident, which he did.

Ratigan pleaded guilty to five federal child pornography charges and was sentenced to 50 years in prison. He has since been expelled from the priesthood.

Finn resigned in 2015, nearly three years after he became the most senior U.S. Roman Catholic prelate convicted of criminal charges related to the church’s child sexual abuse scandal. 

The diocese said Wednesday that the community had been “deeply wounded by the actions and inactions that occurred five years ago revolving around Shawn Ratigan.”

“Work has been done and much more is still needed to recover the trust that was lost from that time,” Smith said. “Being transparent while protecting individual privacy will be a challenge but one we willingly take on in order to earn the trust back of our community.”

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/living/religion/article125995379.html#storylink=cpy

Does Catholic praise for Mary Magdalene show progress towards women priests?

Noli me tangere by TitianThe gospels depict Mary Magdalene as one of Jesus' closest companions. Her emotional encounter with the risen Jesus and her supposed sinful past have fascinated Christians for centuries. 

The latest of many films about her is released shortly. 

Its heroine, played by Rooney Mara, is billed as a young woman who joins "a radical new social movement" and "must confront the reality of Jesus' destiny and her own place within it".

There was amusement when cast members were pictured in ancient garb smoking on set.

Meanwhile, the Roman Catholic Church has enhanced the saint's status. 

Last year her Saint's Day (22 July) was promoted to a Feast, equal to those of most of the male Disciples.

Explaining the decision, Archbishop Arthur Roche pointed out that she had long been known as "apostle to the apostles, as she announces to the apostles what they in turn will announce to all the world."
This refers to John 20:17, in which Jesus sends her to the disciples to tell them he would ascend to God - "apostolos" in Greek means "one who is sent". 

The Vatican press office said that 22 July would be "a feast, like that of the other apostles." 

A special prayer for use at Mass on that day says Jesus honoured her with the task of an apostle (apostolatus officio),

This has coincided with what some believe are signs of a change in Rome's attitude on the possibility of women priests.

The announcement on Mary Magdalene, and the setting up of a commission to discuss the ordination of women as deacons - not priests, but able to preside at weddings, christenings and funerals is an indication to some of change.

Tina Beattie, Professor of Catholic Studies at the University of Roehampton, says: "I accept that it has to be slow, it has to be sensitively done... But my own feeling is that something is happening".

What was said about the feast day was encouraging, says Pippa Bonner of the campaign group Catholic Women's Ordination. "As soon as we spotted that we shared that news around - I think that's a very, very positive step."
In 1994 Pope John Paul II declared "that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church's faithful." Jesus had "called only men as his Apostles", The constant practice of the Church, he stressed, "has imitated Christ in choosing only men."

In November, while returning from a visit to Sweden where he worshipped with the country's female Lutheran archbishop, Antje Jackelen, Pope Francis was asked if his Church still ruled out women priests.

"Saint Pope John Paul II had the last clear word on this and it stands," he said.

Asked again if the ban was permanent, he responded: "If we read carefully the declaration by St. John Paul II, it is going in that direction."

Prof Beattie comments: "Whenever he's asked to give a reason he always references John Paul II... I'm not aware of him saying that under his own Papal authority."

The idea that statements about Mary Magdalene and her "apostleship" contradict the rulings of John Paul II is discounted by many Catholic commentators.

"Many Catholics from the Anglican tradition will rejoice at her commemoration being raised to the dignity of a Feast, while thinking that the idea that this has any relevance to the closed question of women's ordination is entirely fanciful," says Fr Simon Chinery, spokesman for the Ordinariate set up by Pope Benedict as a home within the Catholic Church for Anglicans opposed to women bishops.
Austen Ivereigh, co-founder of the group Catholic Voices, says: "Declaring her day a Feast reflects a growing awareness that the role of women in the early Church was an important one, and needs to be recovered. 

"But opening church leadership to women's unique gifts does not equate to opening the priesthood to women - at least that argument is not being made in any significant way in the Church at the moment." 

Arguments against women's ordination in the Church of England were ultimately unsuccessful. 

But of course the Catholic Church is very different. In the CofE the argument over women's ordination went on for decades. But it was possible to say where it had got to by referring to the state of discussions in the General Synod. It could not have been stopped for good by a ruling like that of Pope John Paul.
A change in doctrine can come as news to Catholics. And it can happen suddenly. 

That was the case with Mary Magdalene herself. In the late 6th Century AD Pope Gregory I declared that she was also the woman in Luke 7:37 who "lived a sinful life", who washed Jesus's feet and dried them with her hair. 

This fuelled the tradition that Mary Magdalene was not only a sinner (which Christianity says we all are) but a particularly colourful one, and inspired dozens of artistic portrayals of her ranging from ravaged penitent to borderline erotic. 

But the revised Roman Calendar of 1969 simply declared that 22 July was indeed the day of Mary Magdalene, but she was not the woman in Luke 7:37. And that, after nearly 1,400 years. was that.

Is she, as the Anglican Rev Giles Fraser claims some see her, "the standard bearer for women's developing role in the Catholic church, and even... for women's ordination"? 

The Church can hardly show it is moved by the late unofficial gospels - one of which talks of Jesus repeatedly kissing Mary Magdalene,; the recent crop of stories claiming she was actually married to Jesus; or the Rooney Mara film. 

And Pope Gregory's claims about her sinful life may be discredited. But all these things contribute to her prestige.

Priest falsely accused of raping a child is acquitted in Chhattisgarh

http://www.asianews.it/files/img/INDIA_-_0112_-_Sacerdote_assolto.jpgA court in Chhattisgarh has acquitted a Catholic priest, a nun and an employee. 

The three had been unjustly accused in connection with an alleged rape involving a nine-year-old girl.
Fr Joseph Dhanaswami, principal of the Jyoti Mission High School in the diocese of Ambikapur, was found not guilty and released on Monday (9 January) after 16 months in prison.

Sajan K George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), told AsiaNews that he is happy with the verdict. 

However, for him the case is just another example "of the ongoing harassment against the Christian minority in educational facilities, in particular in Chhattisgarh State, which is ruled by the [Hindu nationalist] Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)."

The case dates back to 11 September 2015 when Fr Dhanaswami, Sister Christ Maria, the hostel's overseer, and Philomina Kerketta, an employee at the school, were arrested on charges of abusing a fourth grade girl who was studying at the school run by the priest.

The girl’s mother had filed a complaint against the three Catholics and the prosecution had stated that forensic evidence showed “traces of semen on the undergarments" of the alleged victim.

Further investigations had found wounds on her wrists and private parts, which, in the opinion of a doctor, were clear evidence of sexual intercourse.

Catholic Church leaders immediately rejected all the charges and declared that the indictment of the principal was nothing more than an attempt to discredit the image of Christians.

Fr Dhanaswami noted that even though the girl suffered from dermatitis, which had spread to the genital area, her mother and local Hindu extremists continued to blame the educators.

After the Catholics’ arrest, "activists from the Bajrang Dal and the Vishva Hindu Parishad (radical Hindu groups) led protests and threw stones at the school," Sajan K George said.

Since the BJP came to power in Chhattisgarh in 2003, "we have had an increased in attacks against Christians, which intensified after 2014, when the party took over the central government,” the Christian leader added.

“In addition, five villages in Bastar district have approved ordinances that ban non-Hindu religious activities and prayers. In that State, 'Ghar Wapsi', ceremonies to bring home [to Hinduism] and reconvert Christians are commonplace."

In 2006 the State Assembly approved the Chhattisgarh Freedom of Religion (Amendment) Act, an anti-conversion law that punishes with imprisonment of up to three years and fines of up to 20,000 rupees (US$ 300) anyone who is caught converting others via allurement, cheating or the use of force.

ARMENIA - The number of "selective" abortions increases

Image result for armenia flagIn Armenia, a Country strongly characterized by the link with its cultural and spiritual traditions, there is the third highest global rate of selective abortions motivated by sex of the unborn, and data show a drastic increase of the phenomenon over time following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, which was also part of the Caucasian Republic.

According to data provided by the Fund for the United Nations Fund Population (UNFPA), in 2012 114 male births per 100 female births were registered in Armenia, the natural ratio is about 102 boys for every 100 girls. 

"In ten or twenty years", said Garik Hairapetian, UNFPA representative in Armenia "we will face a deficit of women, combined with a sharp decline in fertility rates, which will lead to a serious population crisis. By 2060, 100,000 potential Armenian mothers will not be born. We will become a 'single' men society".

In Armenia the practice is free in public hospitals. 

Last summer Armenian MPs adopted a law destined to amend in part a tendency to selective abortions. 

The law provides on paper that abortion requests are to be rejected if they are justified for reasons related to the sex of the unborn.

PANAMA - The Bishops prepare World Youth Day 2019

The Ordinary Plenary Assembly of the Episcopal Conference of Panama (CEP) is underway.

The Assembly began on Monday, January 9 and will end on Friday 13 in Clayton. 

The central theme is the preparation for World Youth Day, which will take place in the country in 2019. 

CEP is responsible for the organization of the "Days in the Dioceses", this means that the Bishops must carefully plan the reception and the activities of the thousands of youth that will arrive in Panama before WYD 2019.

The Bishops will examine the national reality, illuminating it according to the teaching of the doctrine of the Catholic Church.

MEXICO - Mgr. Navarro: "We must not remain silent but commit ourselves with our history"

During the traditional "Rosca de Reyes", a cake to share to celebrate Epiphany, held in the Bishop’s offices of the Diocese of Zamora (Michoacán, Mexico), was also attended by media representatives, His Exc. Mgr. Javier Navarro Rodríguez, invited to respond before the violent events that occurred in different places of the region.

"We must not remain silent, we are in a democracy and as Catholics we are called to be light of the world and salt of the earth, and that means not to be passive but to commit ourselves with our history, because history will not be changed by Santa Claus or Chapulín Colorado (a Mexican comic character)", said the Bishop.

Mgr. Navarro Rodríguez, recalls that in several cities in Mexico there have been protests for the increase in petrol and violence among civil groups against the government, he said: "What is serious is the loss of confidence in the authorities, that have broken laws that they themselves invite to respect. That is why, as a Church, we do not invite to conformism or to be passive, but to react without violence".

He added that we must change the contorted history ourselves with the help of God, "because we must put human beings at the center, in this case the Mexican, and if one does not believe in God, one must believe in the human being".

In his speech for the new year, the Mexican President informed of the increase in petrol as a necessary measure, but no significant impact on inflation. This was necessary to allow Mexico to return to be competitive in the energy sector, in order not to create new taxes and make cuts in social promotion. 

However, the increase of petrol has resulted in the increase of basic necessities. 

Unfortunately, there have been many reactions, from different social sectors and with a lot of violence, to the point of counting so far more than 4 deaths among protesters and looting and unrest in several cities of the country.

MYANMAR - Catholics know the plight of the Rohingya, but cannot help them

While Korean Yanghee Lee, Special United Nations Rapporteur on the situation of human rights is in Myanmar, for a visit from 9 to 20 January, the serious humanitarian situation of the Muslim minority of ethnic Rohingya continues, a population of about 1.2 million people who live in the state of Rahkine, in the western part of the country.

Thousands of Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh, neighboring state: the Burmese Government does not consider them citizens, but "illegal immigrants", depriving them of all rights. This status of institutionalized discrimination has existed for decades, but in recent years has continued to worsen: since 2012 social and religious tensions in the state of Rahkine have started, and the Rohingya have been subject to violence and persecution promoted by Buddhist nationalist groups who call for the expulsion by the state. 

According to the United Nations, at least 100 thousand Rohingyas have fled the country by finding refuge in neighboring countries, and about 22 thousand people have done it in the past week alone, after the Burmese army launched an offensive in the northern state of Rakhine, in search of "insurgents": a violence that, according to the NGOs could configure the offense of "crimes against humanity". Other 150 thousand Rohingya civilians find themselves in refugee camps and need complete humanitarian assistance.

Fr. Stephen Chit Thein, of the Catholic Diocese of Pyay, which includes the state of Rahkine, is a native of the area near Settwe, where that population is settled: "I remember the difficulties of communication with them, since we did not know the Burmese language", he told Fides. "We are concerned about them, although currently in that strip of land we do not have Catholic representatives, or priests. There are only Buddhists. We know that the humanitarian situation is serious, we express our solidarity, but help is still difficult", he notes.

The Catholic Church, with its structures and charitable organizations such as Caritas – which in Myanmar is called "Karuna" - is unable to act: "The government does not allow us to go in the territory or in refugee camps. No faith-based organization can do it and only a few international NGOs can bring humanitarian assistance", reports Fr. Nereus Tun Min, head of "Karuna" in the Diocese of Pyay. "Against our will - continues Fr. Tun Min - we are only spectators of this crisis. 

We understand that the population is suffering a lot. We know all of their problems, starting from the lack of recognition by the state, which is the principle of every other discomfort and very harmful consequences for them".

The head of "Karuna" concludes: "What we can ask, considering the current presence in Myanmar of the UN Envoy for Human Rights, is that the new government cooperates to stop this escalation and helps to manage a situation which has become unsustainable at a humanitarian point of view, trying to find solutions that are respectful of the rights and dignity of every human being".

With regards to the ordeal of the Rohingya even Burmese Bishops spoke in the past. Cardinal Charles Maung Bo, Archbishop of Yangon, speaking of the new phase of democracy inaugurated in the nation, condemned "the spread of hatred and denial of rights", referring to the violence perpetrated by Buddhist fringes against Rohingya Muslims but also towards the hostility shown towards the people by the Burmese government. In this and other situations of hardship and social conflict, the Burmese Catholics, he remarked "have the task of bringing mercy and announcing mercy".