Pope Francis' Page
Pope Francis Jorge Mario Bergoglio, SJ
Born: December 17, 1936
Ordained a Priest: December 13, 1969 Ordained a Bishop: June 27, 1992
Elected Pope: March 13, 2013
Wisdom by Pope Francis
Look to the past with gratitude.
Live the present with passion.
Move into the future with hope.
Find creative ways to proclaim the gospel of joy!
Year of Mercy
“Mercy is the divine attitude which embraces, it is God’s giving himself to us, accepting us, and bowing to forgive. Mercy is God’s identity card. God of Mercy, merciful God. For me, this really is the Lord’s identity.” Pope Francis
Excerpts from Pope Francis letter on the Year of Mercy
In this Jubilee Year, may the Church echo the word of God that resounds strong and clear as a message and a sign of pardon, strength, aid, and love. May she never tire of extending mercy, and be ever patient in offering compassion and comfort. May the Church become the voice of every man and woman, and repeat confidently without end: “Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and your steadfast love, for they have been from of old.” (Ps.25:6).
Prayers for Pope Francis
Almighty and Everlasting God, have mercy on Your servant Pope Francis,
our Supreme Pontiff, and direct him, according to Your loving kindness,
in the way of eternal salvation, that with Your help he may ever desire that
which is pleasing to You and accomplish it with all his strength.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Lord Jesus, shelter our Holy Father the Pope under the protection
of Your Sacred Heart. Be his light, his strength and his consolation.
O God, shepherd and ruler of all the faithful,
look favorably on your servant Francis,
whom you have set at the head of your Church,
as her shepherd;
Grant, we pray, that by word and example
he may be of service to those over whom he
presides so that, together with the flock entrusted to his care,
he may come to everlasting life.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the
unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
AMORIS LAETITIA: ON LOVE IN THE FAMILY
Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation was published a few weeks ago, written as a result of the discussions at the Synod on the Family last year. Here’s a “take away” from the document, as published in America Magazine:
In the document,the Pope asks the church to meet people where they are, to consider the complexities of people’s lives and to respect people’s consciences when it comes to moral decisions. The apostolic exhortation is mainly a document that reflects on family life and encourages families. But it is also the pope’s reminder that the church should avoid simply judging people and imposing rules on them without considering their struggles.
Using insights form the Synod of Bishops on the Family and from bishops’ conferences from around the world, Pope Francis affirms church teaching on family life and marriage, but strongly emphasizes the role of personal conscience and pastoral discernment. He urges the church to appreciate the context of people’s lives when helping them make good decisions. The goal is to help families - in fact, everyone - experience God’s love and know that they are welcome members of the church.All this may require what the pope calls “new pastoral methods.
Pope Francis' Five Finger Prayer
Using the fingers on your hand, start with the thumb and pray these intentions in this order:
1.) The thumb is closest finger to you. So start praying for those who are closest to you. They are the persons easiest to remember. To pray for our dear ones is a "Sweet Obligation."
2.) The next finger is the index. Pray for those who teach you, instruct you and heal you. They need the support and wisdom to show direction to others. Always keep them in your prayers.
3.) The following finger is the tallest. It reminds us of our leaders, the governors and those who have authority. They need God's guidance.
4.) The fourth finger is the ring finger. Even though it may surprise you, it is our weakest finger. It should remind us to pray for the weakest, the sick or those plagued by problems. They need your prayers.
5.) And finally we have our smallest finger, the smallest of all. Your pinkie should remind you to pray for yourself. When you are done praying for the other four groups, you will be able to see your own needs but in the proper perspective, and also you will be able to pray for your own needs in a better way.
We need constantly to contemplate the mystery of mercy
Mercy: the ultimate and supreme act by which God comes to meet us.
Mercy: the fundamental law that dwells in the heart of every person who looks sincerely into the eyes of his brothers and sisters on the path of life.
Mercy: the bridge that connects God and Man.
...Pope Francis The Name of God Is Mercy, p.106
Pope Francis Announces the Jubilee of Mercy
Dear brothers and sisters, I have often thought of how the Church may render more clear hermission to be a witness to mercy; and we have to make this journey. It is a journey which begins withspiritual conversion. Therefore, I have decided to announce an Extraordinary Jubilee which has at itscentre the mercy of God. It will be a Holy Year of Mercy … This Holy Year will commence on the nextSolemnity of the Immaculate Conception and will conclude on Sunday, 20 November 2016, the Solemnityof Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe and living face of the Father’s mercy.
Our Jubilee of Mercy page
Practical Suggestions for Practicing the Corporal and Spiritual works of Mercy
Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy
The Coat of Arms of Pope Francis
DESCRIPTION OF THE COAT OF ARM
“miserando atque eligendo”
Pope Francis decided to keep his previous coat of arms, chosen at the time of his episcopal consecration and marked by linear simplicity.
The blue shield is surmounted by the symbols of papal dignity, the same as those used by his Predecessor Benedict XVI (the mitre above crossed keys of gold and silver, bound by the red cord). At the top of the shield is the emblem of Pope's religious order, the Society of Jesus: a radiant sun carrying the letters in red, ihs, the monogram of Jesus. The letter h is crowned by a cross; beneath the
letters are three black nails.
Lower down on the shield there is a star and spikenard flower. The star, according to ancient armorial tradition, symbolizes the Virgin Mary, the Mother of Christ and the Church; while the spikenard symbolizes St Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church. In traditional Hispanic iconography, St Joseph is shown with a vine in his hand. By bearing these images on his shield, the Pope communicates his special devotion to the Most Holy Virgin and to St Joseph.
The motto of Pope Francis is taken from a passage from the venerable Bede, Homily 21 (CCL 122, 149-151), on the Feast of Matthew, which reads: Vidit ergo Jesus publicanum, et quia miserando atque eligendo vidit, ait illi, ‘Sequere me’. [Jesus therefore sees the tax collector, and since he sees by having mercy and by choosing, he says to him, ‘follow me’.]
This homily is a tribute to Divine Mercy and is read during the Liturgy of the Hours on the Feast of St Matthew. This has particular significance in the life and spirituality of the Pope. In fact, on the Feast of St Matthew in 1953, the young Jorge Bergoglio experienced, at the age of 17, in a very special way, the loving presence of God in his life. Following confession, he felt his heart touched and he sensed the descent of the
Mercy of God, who with a gaze of tender love, called him to religious life, following the example of St. Ignatius of Loyola.
Once he had been ordained a Bishop, H.E. Mons. Bergoglio, in memory of this event that signified the beginning of his total consecration to God in His Church, chose, as his motto and as his programme of life, the words of St Bede: miserando atque eligendo. This he has chosen to keep in his papal coat of arms.
Flag of Vatican City
The flag of Vatican City was adopted on June 7, 1929, the year Pope Pius XI signed the Lateran Treaty with Italy, creating a new independent state governed by the Holy See. The Vatican flag is modeled on the flag of the earlier Papal States. The Vatican (and the Holy See) also refer to it, interchangeably, as flag of the Holy See.
The flag consists of two vertical bands, one of gold or yellow (hoist side) and one of white with the crossed keys of Saint Peter and the Papal Tiara centered in the white band. The crossed keys consist of a golden and a silver key, in which the silver key is placed in the dexter position. The flag is one of only two square country flags in the world, the other being the flag of Switzerland.
The Vatican City coat of arms is present in the white half. The coat of arms consists of:
• The papal tiara (as used under the pontificate of Pius XI);
• The two keys which represent the Keys of Heaven(according to the Gospel of Matthew 16:19) given by Jesus Christ to St Peter. The popes are regarded as the successor of Peter, and the gold and silver keys have been significant elements in the symbolism of the Holy See since the 13th century. The gold represents spiritual power, while the silver key represents worldly power. The order of the keys on the coat of arms of Vatican City is the reverse of the coat of arms of the Holy See, in order to distinguish between the two entities.
• A red cord connecting the keys.