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  July 2020  
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"The disciples were filled with joy and the holy Spirit.” Acts 13: 52
Reading of the Day

"Whenever you enter a town and its people welcome you, eat what is set before you; cure the sick who are there, and say to them, "The kingdom of God has come near to you." But whenever you enter a town and they do not welcome you, go out into its streets and say, "Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off in protest against you. Yet know this: the kingdom of God has come near." I tell you, on that day it will be more tolerable for Sodom than for that town." Lk 10: 8-12

Saint of the Day
Joel the Prophet

Joel (Hebrew: יואל‎) was a prophet of ancient Israel, the second of the twelve minor prophets and the author of the Book of Joel. He is mentioned by name only once in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, in the introduction to his own brief book, as the son of Pethuel (Joel 1:1). The name Joel combines the covenant name of God, YHWH (sometimes written Jehovah), and el (god), and has been translated as "one to whom Jehovah is God," that is, a worshipper of YHWH. The dates of his life are unknown; he may have lived anywhere from the 9th century BCE to the 5th century BCE, depending on the dating of his book. The book's mention of Greeks has not given scholars any help in dating the text since the Greeks were known to have had access to Judah from Mycenaean times. 

‘I Think of Hagia Sophia, and I Am Very Saddened,’ Says Pope Francis
July 13, 2020 . Following Turkish Court’s Ruling This Week.

 Pope Francis has expressed his sadness over turning Hagia Sophia basilica back into a Mosque, in Istanbul, Turkey.

Pope Moves Five Closer to Sainthood
The Forerunners of Christ with Saints and Martyrs
July 12, 2020. Meeting with Cardinal Angelo Becciu.

On Friday, July 10, 2020, the Holy Father Francis received in audience His Eminence Cardinal Angelo Becciu, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. During the audience, the Supreme Pontiff authorized the same Congregation to promulgate the decrees regarding:

Algeria – in the Steps of Charles de Foucauld
July 10, 2020. The Challenge of Maintaining a Female Christian Presence in Tamanrasset.

On May 27 this year Pope Francis recognized the attribution of a second miracle to Blessed Charles de Foucauld (1858-1916), thereby paving the way for his canonization. Murdered in Tamanrasset in the south of Algeria, deep in the Sahara, this celebrated French hermit and former cavalry officer, converted radically at the age of 28 and thereafter lived a contemplative life abandoned to the will of the Father and centered on the Eucharist.

Farewell to the Fearless Good Samaritan
July 10, 2020. Priest Served ACN in World Hot Spots.

A priest, who is retiring from a leading Catholic charity after 14 years risking his life to bring aid to the Church in need, has been named a modern-day Good Samaritan by Iraq’s most senior Christian leader.

Archbishop Follo: To be Sowers like Christ
Archbishop Francesco Follo, courtesy of the Holy See Mission , UNESCO
July 10, 2020. With the invitation to be like Christ sowers of the Word with a love that always respects freedom.

15th Sunday of Ordinary Time – Year A –  July 12th, 2020

UK Environment Bishop Urges Government to Put Climate Change at Heart of Pandemic Economic Recovery
July 09, 2020. Second Annual London Climate Action Week.

At the start of the second annual London Climate Action Week, Bishop John Arnold of Salford joined UK faith leaders in calling for the government to focus its economic recovery strategy, post-COVID-19 lockdown, on the urgent need to reduce the impact of climate change. Bishop Salford is Lead Bishop for Environmental Issues for Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales. 

FEATURE: Cardinal Turkson Acknowledges to ZENIT Challenges Inherent in Considering COVID ‘Aftermath’
July 09, 2020. Leader of Vatican’s Commission for Covid-19 Discusses Assessing One of ‘Worst Humanitarian Crises Since World War II’.

  While recognizing that talking about COVID-19 ‘aftermath’ is proving to be more complex and challenging than it seemed initially, Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson says that what we are learning from countries that have flattened the curve of contagions can teach valuable lessons to others globally. Regardless, he recognizes, the future reactions of each country to the virus will differ, especially as vaccine research is underway.

‘Such a Personal Encounter With Christ Is Possible Also for Us,’ Pope Reminds Commemorating 2013 Lampedusa Visit
July 08, 2020. ‘You Cannot Imagine the Hell Lived in Libya’s Detention Centers,’ Francis Adds Off the Cuff.

We too, disciples of the Third Millenium, can have this special personal encounter with Christ.

Theology for Millennials: ‘Junipero, Activism and Ignorance’
July 07, 2020. By Father Mario Arroyo.

This Monday, in the “Theology for Millennials” section, Father Mario Arroyo analyzes the recent toppling of statues of Saint Junipero Serra in San Francisco and Los Angeles, as part of the racial protests in States for the death of Afro-American George Floyd.

Cardinal Tagle: ‘Welcome Humility in New Normal’
July 07, 2020 . Celebrates Mass at Pontifical Filipino College in Rome.

As the world braces for the “new normal”, a Vatican official lamented how people quickly forget the lessons on humility from the coronavirus pandemic, reported CBCP News.

July 6: Feast Day of Saint Maria Goretti
July 06, 2020. A Model of Purity and Forgiveness.

Few saints in modern times have captured the hearts of the faithful as much as Saint Maria Goretti, made a saint in 1950 by Pope Pius XII in the Church’s first outdoor canonization in St. Peter’s Square.

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Msgr Georg Ratzinger, Older Brother of Benedict XVI, Told by Dear Friend & Co-Author of ‘My Brother, the Pope’
July 06, 2020. Here’s an in-depth, personal account told by German Author, Historian, & Family Friend Dr. Michael Hesemann.

Georg Ratzinger “was a man who hid his brilliance and greatness behind his even greater humility. A kind soul, a true gentleman, so warm-hearted and friendly to everyone, with a wonderful, charming, typical Bavarian mischievous sense of humor…”

Vatican’s Sea Sunday Message
July 06, 2020. To pray in a special way for the people of the sea who work far away from their countries, loved ones & local Churches.

Here is the message released by the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development for “Sea Sunday”, to be celebrated on July 12, 2020:

Pope Releases Video for July Prayer Intention
July 03, 2020 . May Families be Accompanied with Love, Respect, and Guidance.

Pope Francis has released a video message accompanying his prayer intention for July, which this month is for families that they be “accompanied with love, respect, and guidance.”

It has become the custom of Pope Francis to release a video message detailing his prayer intention for each month.

Pope Sends Aid to World Food Program
Pope Francis, St Peter's Square © L'Osservatore Romano
July 03, 2020. Through the Dicastery for the Service of Integral Human Development.

Following the growing concern over the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) infection at the global level, Pope Francis has decided to send — through the Dicastery for the Service of Integral Human Development and with the collaboration of the Holy See’ Permanent Representative to FAO, IFAD and the World Food Program (WFP) –, a symbolic donation of 25 thousand euros to the WFP, as a further sign of solicitude in face of the present emergency underway.

Statement by the Irish Bishops’ Council for Life
July 03, 2020. Regarding the Report of the Department of Health on ‘Termination of Pregnancy’ in 2019.

The following statement was issued on July 3, 2020, by The Council for Life, an initiative of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference, chaired by Bishop Kevin Doran.  The Council’s objective is to promote the Church’s teaching on the dignity and value of every human life from conception to a natural end.  The role of the Council is to advise and advocate for the Church in Ireland on a consistent ethic of life and care for those most at risk.

On Feast of St. Thomas the Apostle, Patron of Chaldean Church
July 03, 2020. Commentary by Cardinal Louis Raphael Sako, Patriarch of the Chaldeans.

As the Chaldean Church is preparing to celebrate the Feast day of its’ patron, Saint Thomas the Apostle, on the 3rd of July, I would like to congratulate our daughters and sons on this occasion, wherever they are, and to let them know that I am keeping them in my prayers.

Archbishop Follo: To Rediscover Ourselves as Children, we Must be ‘Little’
July 03, 2020. In the Gospel of this Sunday, Jesus Shows us the Concrete way for our Freedom to Open us up to Welcoming Him and we Walk with Him Towards the Fulfillment of our Destiny.

Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year A – July 5, 2020

Pope Francis to Benedict XVI: May the Lord Introduce Msgr. Georg Ratzinger to Heavenly Homeland & Grant Him Prize Prepared for His Faithful Servants
July 02, 2020. Thanks Pope Emeritus for Informing Him First About His Brother’s Passing & Assures Closeness.

May the Lord in his goodness introduce Monsignor Georg Ratzinger to the homeland of Heaven and grant him the prize prepared for the faithful servants of the Gospel…

Corona and the Message of Love
July 02, 2020. Maria Voce and Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf.

By Alon Goshen-Gottstein, specialist in interreligious dialogue