“In sending us Jesus, the Eternal Son made man, God has drawn near to each of us. In Christ He has become our traveling companion.”(Pope John Paul II)
On This Date…
Saint Peter’s Square
On October 22, 1978, Pope John Paul II was inaugurated as pope. In his homily that day at Mass he said, “Be not afraid! Open the doors to Christ.” Pope John Paul had been elected four days earlier.
When Pope John Paul II died on April 2, 2005, the thousands of mourners gathered in Saint Peter’s Square began to cry out, “Santo Subito” (“sainthood immediately”). Pope Francis canonized Pope John Paul II on April 27, 2014 and today is his feast day.
This morning Mr. Gabriel shared these words of St. John Paul II with the Auk Ministry Team: “In sending us Jesus, the Eternal Son made man, God has drawn near to each of us. In Christ He has become our traveling companion.” So, unafraid, let us “Open the doors to Christ.”
At noon on Monday, October 20, 1924, Father James Kern, O.Praem., died during surgery in Austria at age 27. He was shot at age 19 while serving in the army during World War I. He was discharged from the army at age 20 and joined the Norbertines; he was ordained in 1922 at age 25. The following year he had surgery again on his war wound, and during his recuperation ministered to many sick people. He said, “The believer knows that suffering is a difficult path but that it ends up in bright light and warmth which awaits us on the other side of the grave.” When his body was exhumed in 1956 his right hand, which he used to bless people, was found incorrupt.
Pope Saint John Paul IIbeatified Father James in Vienna, Austria on June 21, 1998, encouraging all to follow this “hero of the Church.” Father James Kern was, as Jesus said in today’s Gospel, “rich in what matters to God”.
“For our Gospel did not come to you in word alone, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit, and with much conviction” (1 Thessalonians 1:5)
On This Date…
Today in Rome Pope Francis beatified Pope Paul VI. He was elected pope on June 21, 1963, and took the name “Paul” in honor of the missionary labors of Saint Paul. In 1964 he went to Jerusalem to meet with the Greek Orthodox Patriarch Athenagoras I. In 1965 he came to the United States and addressed the United Nations in New York, pleading for peace. He also went to India, Portugal, Colombia, Uganda, Australia, the Philippines, and Iran – the most traveled pope in history up to that time. He canonized 84 saints including two Americans – Saint Elizabeth Seton and Saint John Neumann.
Pope Paul VI
In 1970 he proclaimed the first two women as doctors of the church – Saint Teresa of Avila and Saint Catherine of Siena. Pope Paul said, “The Church looks at the world with profound understanding, with sincere admiration, and with the sincere intention … of serving it.” He lived out the words of his namesake, Saint Paul, heard today at Mass: “For our Gospel did not come to you in word alone, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit, and with much conviction”.