Good News for the Gospel of Life!

The media is not often the bearer of good news for those committed to the Gospel of Life, but we got some earlier this week! A new Marist poll reveals that physician-assisted suicide does not have as much support across the United States as some advocates would have us think. As you thank God read this report from LifeNews.com:

As assisted suicide failed to pass in state legislatures across the country this year, a new Marist Poll sponsored by the Knights of Columbus found that a majority of Americans do not support assisted suicide and that strong majorities harbor deep concerns over such proposals.

Assisted suicide proposals have stalled since the start of the year in a number of states, including Connecticut, Maryland, Colorado and Nevada.

More than 6 in 10 Americans (61 percent) do not support a doctor prescribing or administering a lethal drug dose, saying that a doctor should instead only manage an illness or remove life support.

Additionally, 57% of Americans say they are less likely to trust a doctor who engages in assisted suicide.

Strong majorities of Americans also have deep concerns about assisted suicide, including:

  • 67% concerned that fewer life-saving options will be given at end of life.
  • 65% concerned that the elderly will be at risk in nursing homes.
  • 64% concerned that the depressed will be more likely to take their lives.
  • 59% concerned about a wrong diagnosis.
  • 55% concerned that the doctor could misjudge a patient’s state of mind.
  • 55% concerned that it will become a cost-saving measure for health care decisions.
  • 54% concerned that patients will be pressured to take their life so as not to be a burden.

 

CLICK HERE to read more.

 

 

 

Divine Mercy and the Sick

Holy Week this year marked the 10th anniversary of Pope John Paul II’s death. A week later, on the eve of Divine Mercy Sunday (a feast created by John Paul II), Pope Francis published his decree for next year’s Jubilee of Mercy. How please John Paul must have been! These events have led many of us to reflect on the saintly Pope’s legacy of mercy.

 

Mercy reaches us through the wounded Christ

Although he did not single out the sick in this context, Pope John Paul II did highlight the close relationship between the Divine Mercy devotion and the suffering. The following excerpts from his canonization homily for St. Faustina, to whom Jesus confided his message of mercy, speak of this:

“His message of mercy continues to reach us through his hands held out to suffering man…. It is not easy to love with a deep love, which lies in the authentic gift of self. This love can only be learned by penetrating the mystery of God's love. Looking at him, being one with his fatherly heart, we are able to look with new eyes at our brothers and sisters, with an attitude of unselfishness and solidarity, of generosity and forgiveness. All this is mercy!”

“Sr Faustina Kowalska wrote in her Diary:  "I feel tremendous pain when I see the sufferings of my neighbors. All my neighbors' sufferings reverberate in my own heart; I carry their anguish in my heart in such a way that it even physically destroys me. I would like all their sorrows to fall upon me, in order to relieve my neighbor" (Diary, p. 365). This is the degree of compassion to which love leads, when it takes the love of God as its measure!”

Pope John Paul II used the canonization of Faustina Kowalska as an occasion to highlight the dignity and value of every human being. This message is so valuable in light of threats to the dignity of the elderly:

“It is this love that must inspire humanity today, if it is to face the crisis of the meaning of life, the challenges of the most diverse needs and, especially, the duty to defend the dignity of every human person. Thus the message of divine mercy is also implicitly a message about the value of every human being. Each person is precious in God's eyes; Christ gave his life for each one; to everyone the Father gives his Spirit and offers intimacy.”

This consoling message is addressed above all to those who, afflicted by a particularly harsh trial or crushed by the weight of the sins they committed, have lost all confidence in life and are tempted to give in to despair. To them the gentle face of Christ is offered; those rays from his heart touch them and shine upon them, warm them, show them the way and fill them with hope. How many souls have been consoled by the prayer "Jesus, I trust in you", which Providence intimated through Sr Faustina! This simple act of abandonment to Jesus dispels the thickest clouds and lets a ray of light penetrate every life. Jezu, ufam tobie. (John Paul II April 30, 2000)

 

Praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet for the dying

The Eucharistic Apostles of Divine Mercy, a ministry of the Marians of the Imamculate Conception, who administer the Divine Mercy Shrine in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, promote the value of praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet with the dying, following Jesus’ instructions to St. Faustina:

“Encourage souls to say the chaplet which I have given you (1541) . . . “Whoever will recite it will receive great mercy at the hour of death” (Diary 687) . . . “When they say this chaplet in the presence of the dying, I will stand between My Father and the dying person, not as the just judge, but as the merciful Savior” (Diary 1541) . . . “Pray as much as you can for the dying. By your entreaties [that is, insistent prayers], obtain for them trust in my mercy, because they have most need of trust, and have it the least. Be assured that the grace of eternal salvation for certain souls in their final moment depends on your prayer. You know the whole abyss of My mercy, so draw upon it for yourself and especially for poor sinners. Sooner would heaven and earth turn into nothingness than would My mercy not embrace a trusting soul” (Diary 1777) . . . “Every soul that will say this chaplet; or when others say it for a dying person, the indulgence is the same” (Diary, 811).

Saint Faustina was often given the grace to know when a certain dying person desired or needed prayer; she would be alerted to the moment, by her Guardian Angel or by our Lord himself. At those times she would pray until she no longer felt the need to pray, or a sense of peace came upon her, or she learned that the person had died, or heard the soul say, “Thank You!” She wrote: “Oh, dying souls are in such great need of prayer! O Jesus, inspire souls to pray often for the dying” (Diary, 1015).

 

CLICK HERE for a brochure from the Eucharistic Apostles of Divine Mercy, which can help you to know how to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet with the dying.

 

 

 

Make Our Hearts Like Yours

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Easter: O Charity Beyond All Telling!

On this Easter Sunday my mind and heart are resting on a paragraph from last nights’ Exsultet:

Our birth would have been no gain,
Had we not been redeemed.
O wonder of your humble care for us!
O Love, O charity beyond all telling,
To ransom a slave you gave away your Son!

 

 

God’s humble care and love brings us back to Holy Thursday, as Pope Francis’ homily at the Mass of the Lord’s Supper expressed so well. The passage of the Gospel that we heard on Holy Thursday “says a word that is precisely the center of what Jesus did for all of us: ‘He loved his own in the world and he loved them to the end.’ (Jn. 13,2). Jesus loved us. Jesus loves us. But without limits, always to the end. The love of Jesus for us has no limits, it is always more. He never tires of loving anyone. He loves all of us to the point of giving His life. Yes, He gives his life for all of us, He gives his life for each one of us. And each one of us can say: ‘He gave His life for me.’ He gave his life for you, for you, for you, for me for each one, with first and last name, because His love is like that: personal.”

“The love of Jesus never deceives because he never tires of loving, as He also never tires of forgiving, He never tires of embracing us. This is the first thing I wanted to tell you: Jesus loved each one of you ‘to the end.’”

“Jesus, has so much love that He made Himself a slave in order to serve us, to heal us, to clean us … In our heart, we must have the certainty, we must be sure that the Lord, when he washes our feet, He washes everything, He purifies us! He makes us feel once again His love.

In the Bible there is a sentence from the prophet Isaiah that is very beautiful. It says: ‘Can a mother forget her own child? Though a mother may forget her child, I will not forget you!’ (Is. 49:15) That is how the love of God is for us.”

 

 

This is charity beyond all telling, an expression of God’s humble care for us!

Alleluia! Let us rejoice in the love of Christ, our Good Shepherd and Risen Lord!

 

 

 

 

Pope Francis speaks of elderly again in his weekly audience

On March 11 the Pope spoke about the elderly for a second time in his weekly audience.

"In a society which overlooks and discards the elderly, may the Church acknowledge their contributions and gifts, and help them to foster a fruitful dialogue between the generations." CLICK HERE TO READ MORE.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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