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Monday 19 April |
Saint of the Day: Pope Saint Leo IX

Year of Mercy Tally: Over 1.3 Million Have Participated So Far

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 01/29/16

From Vatican Radio:

Archbishop Rino Fisichella, President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization, held a press conference on Friday (29 Jan) to discuss the Missionaries of Mercy to be sent out into the world by Pope Francis for the Jubilee of Mercy and the temporary exposition of the body of St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina in St. Peter’s Basilica for the Lenten season. Archbishop Fisichella also gave some statistics on the number of pilgrims participating in Jubilee Year events taking place in Rome, saying that “as of today 1,392,000 people have participated in Jubilee events,” of which some 40% come from abroad, mostly from French or Spanish speaking countries. Yet he reminded all the most important element of the Jubilee Year is not numbers, but an experience of God’s mercy. “A Holy Year of mercy goes well beyond numbers, for it is intended to touch the hearts and the minds of people in order to assist them in coming to understand the ways in which God’s great love manifests itself in their daily lives. It is a time during which to assess our lives of faith and to understand how we are capable of conversion and renewal, both of which come from recognizing the importance of remaining focused upon what is essential.” Archbishop Fisichella also related the life stories of the two saints whose relics are in Rome for the Jubilee Year, Saint Leopold Mandić and Saint Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, giving the details of where and when their remains will be exposed. He went on to speak of the Missionaries of Mercy who Pope Francis will send out into the world on Ash Wednesday, recalling the words of the Bull of Indiction, Misericordiae vultus. “The Missionaries of Mercy are a select number of priests who have received from the Pope the charge to be privileged witnesses in their respective Churches of the extraordinariness of this Jubilee event. It is only the Pope who nominates these Missionaries, not the Bishops, and it is he who entrusts them with the mandate to announce the beauty of the mercy of God while being humble and wise confessors who possess a great capacity to forgive those who approach the confessional. The Missionaries, who come from every continent, number over 1,000.”

On telling and timely anecdote about Padre Pio:

His hunger for holiness spread beyond the Church of Padua, where he lived the major part of his life and where his memory and his relics remain. Originally from Croatia, this Capuchin father dedicated all of his life to the confessional. For almost thirty years, he spent from ten to fifteen hours a day in the secrecy of his cell, the very place which became a confessional for thousands of people who found in their relationships with him the privileged witness of forgiveness and of mercy. Some of his brothers noted that he was “ignorant and too lenient in forgiving everyone without discernment.” Yet, his simple and humble response to this charge leaves one speechless: “Should the Crucified blame me for being lenient, I would answer Him: Lord, you gave me this bad example. I have not yet reached the folly of your having died for souls.”

Read more. 

Photo: Wikipedia

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