Peace Be With You

Today’s Word:

“Peace be with you” (John 20:19)


On This Date…

Pope John Paul II

Pope John Paul II

On April 2, 2005, a Saturday, Pope John Paul II died in Rome just short of his 85th birthday (May 18th). He was baptized as Karol (Charles), named for his father. His mother died when Karol was 8 years old. Karol excelled in academics and drama, played soccer, and was very devout, going to the church next door to his apartment. His father died in 1941, when Karol was 21; he entered the seminary the next year and was ordained in 1946. He became the spiritual leader to a group of young adults, with whom he went kayaking and camping; he wrote poetry. He became a bishop in 1958, a cardinal in 1967, and pope in 1978. In his homily at his installation on October 22, 1978, he said, “Be not afraid! Open the doors to Christ.” He was canonized on April 27, 2014, Divine Mercy Sunday, an annual celebration inaugurated by Pope John Paul II, which this year began this evening.

In the Gospel for Divine Mercy Sunday, Jesus’ first words after coming through the door of the Upper Room on Easter Night, were ,”Peace be with you”, words of courage and mercy.

– Father McLaughlin

Ambassadors For Christ

Today’s Word:

“We are ambassadors for Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:20)


On This Date…

hugoOn February 10, 1164 Abbot Hugh of Fosses died at the Abbey of Premontre in France at age 70. He had met Saint Norbert for the first time on March 26, 1119 and was deeply affected by Norbert’s words and way of life. He joined the first Norbertine community in 1121 at Premontre and was appointed Prior (Norbert’s first assistant). When Norbert was made an archbishop in 1126 Hugh was elected as the first Abbot, serving until his death. He built the first monastery and the abbey church. Under his guidance the number of Norbertine monasteries grew to 126. He wrote one of the biographies of Saint Norbert. He never used the title “abbot” but “servant of God and Norbert.” Pope Pius XI confirmed the cult of Blessed Hugh in 1927; his remains were moved to the Norbertine headquarters in Rome in 2010. There is a beautiful statue of Blessed Hugh and Saint Norbert in the cemetery at Daylesford Abbey.

At Mass today we heard these words of Saint Paul, “We are ambassadors for Christ”. Blessed Hugh was an ambassador for Christ and Saint Norbert – a good Lenten companion for us.

– Father McLaughlin

The Father’s Mercy

Today’s Word:

“…the living face of the Father’s mercy.”

 – Pope Francis


On This Date…

Pope_Francis_Korea_Haemi_Castle_19_(cropped)

Pope Francis

On March 13, 2013 Pope Francis was elected pope on the 5th ballot, the first pope to choose the name “Francis.” He was born in 1936 in Buenos Aires, Argentina; he joined the Jesuits in 1958, was ordained priest in 1969, and was ordained bishop in 1992. His motto as bishop was “lowly but chosen” (cf. Matthew 9:9-13), a motto he has kept as pope.

In his homily today during a Penance Service at Saint Peter’s Basilica, Pope Francis announced a year of jubilee dedicated to the mercy of God, from December 8, 2015 to November 20, 2016, calling Jesus “the living face of the Father’s mercy.”  On this “Friday the 13th” we thank God for Pope Francis who is also “the living face of the Father’s mercy.”

– Father McLaughlin