PAPAL BULL OF INDICTION OF THE EXTRAORDINARY JUBILEE OF MERCY
The Holy Year will open on 8 December 2015, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception and will close with the liturgical Solemnity of Christ the King on 20 November 2016. Read the Misericordiae Vultus,
Inauguration of the Jubilee Year of Mercy
Give Thanks to the Lord for He is Good, His Mercy Endures Forever" Psalm 107:1
Jesus teaches us that to reach happiness is to pass through the path of love and mercy..."Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy"
Pope Francis has called our Universal Church to celebrate a Holy Year inviting us to reflect, pray and put into action that which distinguishes us as a community of baptized and, at the same time, expresses the ideal to which we aspire: "To be Merciful as the Father is Merciful".
With this theme the Holy Father invites us to a Jubilee Year of both internal conversion and evangelization. We are to look at how we live this ideal of Mercy in our community of faith but also how we as a parish and individual take it out into our society for the lifting up of God's people.
Pope Francis has identified various pastoral actions that express the mercy of God, but it is our community who must make them concrete in their own reality. One way to do this is to open our hearts to the poor and marginalized, those whom society categorizes as the least among us, many who are considered "throw-aways", dispensable and not worthy of a better life. People who live in brokenness, who are abandoned, forgotten or dysfunctional due to no fault of their own, for it is modern society who has created and allowed these margins of devaluing others to exist.
There will always be something we can do to help others. The Pope insists "let us rediscover these Corporal Works of Mercy: to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, welcome the stranger, heal the sick, visit the imprisoned, and bury the dead". All of these acts of mercy should be our priority in knowledge and in practice.
This year is a beautiful opportunity to enliven our community with the strength of this message of love and mercy. We are called to be carriers of a powerful message which can have a positive influence on our parish, families, neighborhoods, places of work, schools, society and most importantly the people who come to us for help. We must work to identify in our own local reality, those who are marginalized and offer to them the oil of consolation and the bandages of mercy.
With these five little words, "You Did It For Me", those involved in our Parish Outreach Ministry are called to serve others as if we are serving Christ. We will celebrate and embrace this special year of Mercy by continuing and emphasizing the focus of our ministry which directly serves the marginalized - the incarcerated, the poor, hungry and abused, immigrants, refugees, and veterans, the orphans and widows, the homeless, elderly and infirm, the unborn and those challenged with a disability or mental illness, those imprisoned and exploited by another's greed.
Our words and actions must always serve others with charity, for in charity there is truth. We must be defenders of truth, but never without charity, because in the end, Pope Francis tells us, "all the rich teaching is channeled in one direction, the service of mankind, of every condition, in every weakness and need."
You are invited to join us in our Outreach Ministry, as we take ownership of the Year of Mercy in our lived reality of our faith. We believe that God has blessed us with awareness that our time, talent and treasures are to be shared with our brothers and sisters in need and we invite you to join us in our mission to serve them. We pray that our words bring comfort, our hearts bring healing and our actions speak volumes of the love and compassion of our God. May the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit accompany us as we follow the lead of our Pope in this year of reflection and action; And may Mary our Mother of Divine Mercy help us to fulfill it.
“Extend mercy toward others, so that there is no one in need whom we meet without helping. For what hope is there for us if God should withdraw mercy from us?"
(St. Vincent de Paul, Apostle of Charity)
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that you can participate in to provide for the needs of our brothers aned sisters.
"Jesus, seeing the crowds of people who followed him, realized that they were tired and exhausted, lost and without a guide, and he felt deep compassion for them (cf. Mt 9:36).
On the basis of this compassionate love he healed the sick who were presented to him
(cf. Mt 14:14), and with just a few loaves of bread and fish he satisfied the enormous crowd (cf. Mt 15:37). What moved Jesus in all of these situations was nothing other than mercy,
with which he read the hearts of those he encountered and responded to their deepest need."
(Misericordiae Vultus, paragraph 8)