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“WE CANNOT REST WHILE JUST ONE UNJUSTLY CONDEMNED CHRISTIAN IS IN CHAINS”

“Two months ago Meriam Ibrahim gave birth in chains on a Sudanese prison floor. Yet just a few days ago she held the baby, Maja, on her lap as she spoke to Pope Francis in the Vatican. The Holy See’s precise role in her release from Sudan is unclear. Britain, Canada and especially Italy certainly all helped her liberty. But it would not be at all surprising if senior Vatican diplomats, and perhaps Francis himself, had worked behind the scenes to achieve this happy outcome.

Meriam’s release should be the cause of much rejoicing, especially at such a dark time for Christians in disintegrating majority Muslim countries. But we must continue to seek freedom for those who languish outside the media spotlight. We think of Asia Bibi, the Pakistani mother of five who currently sits in a grim prison cell, feeling abandoned by the world, accused of the capital offence of blasphemy. We cannot rest while just one unjustly condemned Christian is in chains.”
– This article was published in “The Catholic Herald” issue August 1 2014. For subscriptions please visit http://www.catholicherald.co.uk (external link).

 
 

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FOR YOUR DIARY: BLESSED TANSI PILGRIMAGE

“BLESSED TANSI PILGRIMAGE TO LEICESTERSHIRE AT MOUNT ST BERNARD

The annual Pilgrimage in honour of Blessed Cyprian Iwene Tansi for the year 2014 will be held at

• WHERE: Saint Bernard Abbey,
Whitwick Coalville,
Leicestershire
LE67 5UL

• WHEN : Saturday, 30th August

Mass starts at 11am and there will also be a Rosary Procession and Blessing of the Sick.

• For more details and coach bookings please contact 07882106037.”

 
 

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MOST FAIR OF ALL THE VIRGIN HOST (HYMN)

Most fair of all the virgin host!
Enthroned above the starry sky!
Who with your bosom’s milk did feed
Your own Creator Lord most high.

What man had lost in hapless Eve,
Your sacred womb to man restores;
You to the wretched here beneath
Have open’d Heav’n’s eternal doors.

O Lord, to you be lasting praise,
O Jesus, born the Virgin’s Son,
With Father and with Holy Ghost,
While everlasting ages run. Amen.

 
 

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“THE ASSUMPTION REMINDS US THAT MARY’S LIFE, LIKE THAT OF EVERY CHRISTIAN, IS A JOURNEY OF FOLLOWING, FOLLOWING JESUS”

“The Assumption reminds us that Mary’s life, like that of every Christian, is a journey of following, following Jesus, a journey that has a very precise destination, a future already marked out: the definitive victory over sin and death and full communion with God, because as Paul says in his Letter to the Ephesians the Father “raised us up with him, and made us sit with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Eph 2:6). This means that with Baptism we have already fundamentally been raised and are seated in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, but we must physically attain what was previously begun and brought about in Baptism. In us, union with Christ’s resurrection is incomplete, but for the Virgin Mary it is complete, despite the journey that Our Lady also had to make. She has entered into the fullness of union with God, with her Son, she draws us onwards and accompanies us on our journey.”
– Pope Benedict XVI

 
 

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PRAYER ON THE SOLEMNITY OF THE ASSUMPTION

V. The holy Mother of God has been raised up.
R. Beyond the choirs of Angels to the heavenly kingdom.

Wither do you go, O Virgin most prudent, like the morning rising. You are all comely and beautiful, daughter of Sion, fair as the moon, bright as the sun.

Let us pray.
Almighty and everlasting God, you received the immaculate Virgin Mary, the Mother of your Son, body and soul into the glory of heaven; grant that, with our gaze ever fixed on heavenly things, we may be counted worthy of a share in her eternal glory. Through the same Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.

 
 

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THE LORD, WHOM EARTH, AND AIR, AND SEA (HYMN)

The Lord, whom earth, and air, and sea,
With one adoring voice resound;
Who rules them all in majesty,
In Mary’s heart a cloister found.

Lo! in a humble Virgin’s womb,
O’ershadowed by Almighty power;
He whom the stars, and sun, and moon,
Each serve in their appointed hour.

O Lord, to you be lasting praise,
O Jesus, born the Virgin’s Son,
With Father and with Holy Ghost,
While everlasting ages run. Amen.

 
 

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THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, GOSPEL READING (LUKE 1:39-56)

THE ALMIGHTY HAS DONE GREAT THINGS FOR ME, HE HAS EXALTED THE LOWLY.

Mary set out and went as quickly as she could to a town in the hill country of Judah. She went into Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth. Now as soon as Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leapt in her womb and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. She gave a loud cry and said, “Of all women you are the most blessed, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. Why should I be honoured with a visit from the mother of my Lord? For the moment your greeting reached my ears, the child in my womb leapt for joy. Yes, blessed is she who believed that the promise made her by the Lord would be fulfilled.”

And Mary said:
“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord
and my spirit exults in God my saviour;
because he has looked upon his lowly handmaid.
Yes, from this day forward all generations will call me blessed,
for the Almighty has done great things for me.
Holy is his name,
and his mercy reaches from age to age for those who fear him.
He has shown the power of his arm,
he has routed the proud of heart.
He has pulled down princes from their thrones and exalted the lowly.
The hungry he has filled with good things, the rich sent empty away.
He has come to the help of Israel his servant, mindful of his mercy
– according to the promise he made to our ancestors -
of his mercy to Abraham and to his descendants for ever.”

Mary stayed with Elizabeth about three months and then went back home.

V. The Gospel of the Lord.
R. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

 
 

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