Tired of all the bad news

While we can't deny the difficulites for so many people at home and overseas, it's important to take account of the positives, and to spread the Good News. I don't know who said this but; "No-one ever injured their eyesight by looking on the bright side." Blessings..

Friday, 31 August 2018

Pope Francis - Repair my Church

No doubt the historic but intensive Apostolic Visit of Pope Francis to the World Meeting of Families 2018 in Ireland was a success. But a perusal of the media reporting and social media coverage since Pope Francis has returned to Rome highlights criticism by Archbishop Vigano as well as a sharp focus on how effective the universal Church is in its management of child safeguarding.

While it is an imperative that the truth comes out on these important matters, specifically in relation to Archbishop Vigano, I cannot help but believe that the Holy Father is being subjected to a tactical attack by some in clerical leadership roles in the Church. I feel that they simply don’t like him, and indeed have been critical of him since his first day as pope.

In the Gospel according to Matthew, at the Last Supper, Jesus turns to the disciples and prophesies that the “Shepherd will be struck, and the sheep will be scattered.” (Matt 26:31) In the second chapter of Matthew’s gospel, Herod learned of the birth of Jesus and wanted to kill him (Matt 2:13). Almost from the beginning of his public ministry, the established faith leaders didn’t like what Jesus stood for. They didn’t like Him eating with sinners, and they were critical of His association with lepers and tax collectors. They resented that He met people on the periphery and that He crossed borders to reach out to the poor. They watched for every opportunity to condemn Him when He ministered on the sabbath. It made them angry when Jesus called them out for their hypocrisy. In a word, Jesus was brave.

When Jesus was condemned to death, Pilate didn’t know Him. The Romans in charge of the scourging and the execution didn’t know Him. The soldiers who drove the nails into His hands and feet didn’t know Him. The Pharisees and the Scribes who were supposed know the scriptures should have known Him. Jesus’ disciples who abandoned him, and they certainly should have known Him. At least they came back, and they repented because of the prayer of Christ. “Simon, Simon, Satan has got his wish that he sift you all like wheat, but I have prayed for you, Simon, and after you have recovered, you in turn must strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22: 31-32).

The very ones who are criticising Pope Francis are supposed to be shepherds, wouldn’t you think they should know him? Instead of showing a leadership of service, it seems to me that some ministers in the Church would prefer to see the back of Pope Francis and this is very sad.

There are some in ministry who feel Pope Francis is too liberal, dispensing with many of the exterior trappings of the papacy like living modestly, wearing a simpler cassock and sash, and wearing simpler vestments. Others feel he is still too conservative and should speak up in support of the prevailing culture of the world more, especially in the west.

While it is critical that the truth fully comes out, because the truth will set us free, it is very sad that some attack the Holy Father in public and chip away at his mission of service to the Church.

I get consolation from remembering the vast multitudes of ‘God’s holy and faithful people’ (as Francis likes to call them) gathering at the faith enriching Festival of Families in Croke Park last Saturday evening, and at the wonderful Papal Mass last Sunday. The people came to see the Holy Father from the four corners of the world – and our country - in the wind and rain, to hear in his words and see in his example, his desire, to bring people closer to Jesus Christ. In the words of the gospel for the Mass, “Lord, to whom shall we go, you have the message of eternal life, and we have come to know that you are the Holy One of God” (John 6:68).

The vision of Pope Francis comes from the life Saint Francis of Assisi when he kneels in prayer before the cross in the little ruined chapel of San Damiano. Francis hears the voice of Jesus which says “Francis, go repair my Church which as you can see is falling completely into ruin.” At first, Francis begs for bricks and mortar to literally build up that ruined chapel. Later, with the help of the poor and marginalised, and with the help of the other brothers who came to join him, he discovers that Jesus means upbuilding the Church not with bricks and mortar but person by person and by embracing the best parts.

Franciscans don’t destroy, they repair. This is the vision of Pope Francis too, and his vision contains time, and care, and prayer. Let us act on his request to us on that special day in August when he visited the Capuchin Day Centre in Dublin city centre. Before giving his Apostolic blessing to all present has said: “Thank you for trusting us. Pray for the Capuchins, pray for priests, pray for bishops and pray for the Church.”


  1. If you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
    If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
    If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
    Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

    If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
    If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
    If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
    And treat those two impostors just the same;
    If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
    Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

    If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
    And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breathe a word about your loss;
    If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,
    And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

    If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
    If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
    If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
    Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
    And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

  2. مؤسس الزهراني
    مقاول عام
    تنفيذ جميع المشاريع السكنيه والتجاريه والمستودعات الكبيره ومحطات الوقود وصالات الافراح وايضاً المباني المعماريه بجميع انواعها بـ افضل الأسعار...
    - فـلل - عمائر - استراحات - شاليهات
    - ملاحق - معارض - مساجد - هناجر
    - تسوير اراضي - هدم - ترحيل - ترميم
    - غرف حراس - توسعه داخل الشقق
    •• يوجد مجموعة من والعمال الفنيين
    المميزين في جميع البنود التنفيذية
    •• ومن ليس عنده خبره بالبناء
    يتصل بنا وان شاء الله سيجد
    ((افكار جيده ومساعده لحصول
    علي احسن نتيجه بأقل تكلفه))
    •• نحن نضمن لكم الجودة في العمل تحت ضوابط هندسيه. وتنجنب البناء العشوائي
    •• ويكون عقد رسمي بين الطرفين موثق من
    قبل الغرفه التجاريه قبل البدء في العمل.

    مقاول عام
    بناء هناجر
    بناء مستودعات
    بناء ملاحق
    بناء فلل
    بناء عماير
    مقاول عظم
    مقاول قرميد
    مقاول مزارع
    مقاول طرق
    مقاولات عامة
    مقاول فلل ملاحق استراحات
    ملاحق علويه أرضية

    للتواصل أبو محمد