News & Blog

What’s the role of the Focolare Movement in the New Evangelization?

  What’s the role of the Focolare Movement in the New Evangelization? Maria Voce is the president of the Focolare Movement. She is also the first successor of Chiara Lubich, who founded the movement back in 1943 in northern Italy. Voce is actually taking on a special role in the Synod on the New Evangelization. She is participating not only as the President of this popular Movement, but also as an auditor. MARIA VOCE President, Focolare Movement “Taking part in the synod is very important. Here, we’ve seen that the Synod Fathers are appreciating more the role these movements have in the Church. In the field of the New Evangelization, they see our capacity in reviving  families, communities and the youth. It’s really a gift from the Holy Spirit.” The fact that orders and congregations are an essential part...

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The Writings of Fr Tony McSweeney SSS

  The Writings of Fr Anthony McSweeney SSS  Fr Anthony McSweeney SSS, an Australian Blessed Sacrament Father, is currently a member of the community at St Francis’ in Melbourne.  In addition to his ministry in the church, he also preaches retreats and gives talks and days of recollection. Fr McSweeney joined the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament in 1960.  He was ordained on 16 August 1969.  Between 1969 and 1976 Fr McSweeney was involved in formation work and taught systematic theology at the first Consortium of its kind in Sydney at Turramurra, Sydney (comprising the Columban Missionaries, Benedictines, Vincentians and the Blessed Sacrament Congregation).     Fr McSweeney was elected to the General Council in Rome in 1976 and was elected Superior General and re-elected: 1981-1993; elected for a three-year term head of the Union of Superiors General, representing all...

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UK Christmas Postage Stamps 2012

  UK Christmas Postage Stamps 2012   The Christmas stamps this year have been designed by Webb and Webb using new illustrations by Axel Scheffler – the artist who illustrated the children’s classic The Gruffalo. As usual the stamps will be in standard and large letter definitive size and self adhesive.  There will also be a conventionally-gummed miniature sheet containing all stamps, booklets of 12 x 1st and 12 x 2nd stamps, and a Smilers Generic sheet with – probably – 2nd, 1st, 68p & £1.10 stamps. The stamps, to be issued on 6 November.            The two 2007 Madonna stamps will also be reissued to provide the religious alternative.      ...

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Together against the Death Penalty

Together against the Death Penalty The UN General Assembly is currently discussing the terms of a  resolution calling for a worldwide moratorium on the death penalty. It is likely to go to a vote next month. The last time there was such a vote (in 2010), 109 states were in favour, 41 against, and 35 abstained. The United Kingdom and the Holy See are both against the use of the death penalty. Earlier this week, I discussed the debates at the UN with Holy See officials, and we agreed that our delegations in New York should work together on this issue. Worldwide abolition of the death penalty remains a long term British human rights objective. In Great Britain, it was abolished for murder in 1969 (1973 in Northern Ireland) and under all circumstances in 1998. For the Holy See,...

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Lourdes emergency appeal

  Lourdes launches emergency appeal after floods damage Shrine Clean-up operations at Lourdes enabled small groups of pilgrims to visit the Grotto on Tuesday after the River Gave overflowed its banks at the weekend, swamping the shrine with mud and debris. Repairs are estimated to cost about two million euros (1.7 million pounds). Workers have cleared away a thick carpet of mud from the shrine, and many areas are accessible to pilgrims again,  but visits to the baths have been suspended while the water pumps are cleaned and repaired. Most of the damage took place at the hydroelectric power plant and the bridges at the height of the flood, as fallen trees carried in the surging waters crashed into them, a spokesman said.   The Sanctuary has received many messages and calls from concerned pilgrims asking how they can donate...

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Year of Faith Scotland

Year of Faith Scotland All are welcome to this National Mass in which we give thanks to God for all who are currently engaged in transmitting the faith, including: parents, teachers, catechists, RCIA teams, youth workers, school pupils, university students,  religious, clergy.   The Bishops of Scotland have issued a pastoral letter to mark the launch of the Year of Faith.  To read the letter, click here. A new website has been created, with a calendar of events, talks, Masses, pilgrimages etc., and useful materials such as the Documents of Vatican II, the Catechism etc. It also has a schema linking the Sunday readings to the relevant section of the catechism to aid study and prayer.   The new website is:  ...

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Maria to Brazil for three weeks

Our music mistress for our LITE team, Maria Novani has been asked by Father Pat Costello to attend the Commission for Mission group who are meeting in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Maria will be away for three weeks. The Holy Spirit is looking after Maria!! Maria was asked to Brazil as an ideas person and also to submit  a report on The Bl. Sacrament Communities and their ministeries in our province of St. Peter and Paul . Maria will also give an in depth report on LITE which will take the form of a clearer view and understanding of the  capabilities of the communities and their  ministeries …how they operate good or not so good. New ideas can be offered. The focus towards the next General Chapter. Next team meeting of the Glasgow LITE is on the Monday 19th November...

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Last three months of 2012

As we finish another year in the Glasgow LITE we say a fond farewell to Sadie Longmuir who has retired after seventeen years in the LITE team. Two weeks ago we presented our programme at St Patricks’ Old Kilpatrick a few miles to the west of Glasgow. Old Kilpatrick is reputed to be the village where St Patrick was born. Fr WIlson, the parish priest invited the LITE team to present the programme over five evenings from Saturday 29th September to Wednesday 3rd October 2012.  As the parish did not have a church hall the programme was presented in the chapel. The Blessed Sacrament was exposed for the 40 hours during part of our presentation. When we performed the first three presentations of the LITE programme in St.Patrick’s Old Kilpatrick, the Blessed Sacrament was exposed.During this time it made me reflect back to the first time St Peter...

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CCEE Presidency’s letter to Metropolite Hilarion on Christian intolerance

CCEE Presidency addresses its concern in regard to the recent act of religious hatred in the Russian Federation with a letter to Metropolitan Hilarion, Head of the Department for External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate   The Presidency of the Council of European Bishops’ Conference (CCEE) has addressed today a letter to Metropolitan Hilarion, Head of the Department for External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate, expressing its “grave concern with regard to the numerous and increasing manifestations of discrimination against Christians in different countries, and of anti-Christian and anti-church sentiments which have been increasing especially in the Russian Federation in recent months”.     Regarding the increasing manifestations of hatred against Christianity in the Russian Federation, the CCEE Presidency rejects “the tendency to misunderstand freedom of art and freedom of expression when there is in fact instigation...

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