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Stational Churches (Virtually visit one each day and pray)
ACatholicLife.blogspot.com ^ | 2010 | Matthew

Posted on 02/16/2010 6:16:10 PM PST by Salvation

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Stational Church: Friday in the Fifth Week of Lent
 
 
Today's Stational Church is at St. Stephen on Mt. Coelius.

Information is from the Canon Regulars of St. John Cantius:

This Lenten Station takes us back to a sacred area, which still preserves its aura of mystery. This area was sacred to the pagans, who had, on the nearby Palatine Hill, the black rock of the Magna Mater and who had there the sacred land, on which the "profane" outsiders were forbidden to set foot. It was sacred also to the Christians, who even today venerate it as the place, which gave martyrdom and glory to saints. St. Stephen on Mt. Ceolius, or St. Stephen Rotondo as the Romans call it because of its circular plan, is among the most ancient of the round churches with its altar in the center and thus visible from all sides. It was built between 400 and 450 and was consecrated by Pope Simplicius.

St. Stephen was the first martyr — or witness — of Christ. While dying, he beheld the Savior at the right hand of the Father in Heaven. Thus, it was fitting to assemble in this basilica at this holy time, consecrated to the memory of the Savior's Passion, which prepares us to celebrate His triumph at Easter.

Let us pray: Pour forth Thy grace into our hearts, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that we who refrain from sin by self-denial, may be rather afflicted in time than condemned to eternal punishment. Through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.


101 posted on 03/25/2010 10:05:18 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: combat_boots; Mercat; Condor51; mlizzy; Bigg Red; VOA
Santo Stefano Rotondo

 

Day XXXVIII. Friday, Week V.

“Jesus carried our sins in his own body on the cross so that we could die to sin and live in holiness; by his wounds we have been healed” (Communion antiphon for today - 1 Pt 2:24).

Santo Stefano Rotondo. Today’s church was built between 400 and 450 and consecrated by Pope Simplicius. It is one of the oldest of the churches in the round, with the altar in the center. It must have been magnificent but through subsequent “restorations”, it has lost most of its size and splendor. Due to the present “restoration”, Mass was celebrated at the altar of Saints Primus and Felicianus (see photo). They were beaten, thrown to the wolves and lions, and tortured by burning them with fire and by pouring boiling fluids down their throats, before they were ultimately beheaded. One wonders how a human person can be so cruel to another.


102 posted on 03/25/2010 10:08:37 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Stational Church: Saturday in the Fifth Week of Lent
 
 
Today's Stational Church is at St. John before the Latin Gate.

Information is from the Canon Regulars of St. John Cantius:

The Station on this eve of Palm Sunday is of a comparatively late origin—formerly, the Pope spent a part of the day distributing alms to the poor, and rested in preparation for Holy Week.

St. John's before the Latin Gate was chosen as a stational church. Near the place where the Appian Way branches off, forming the Latin Way to the left, it was built on the spot where St. John was, by order of Domitian, plunged into a cauldron of boiling oil. St. John, who with Mary shared the privilege of standing near the Cross, also joined his sacrifice to that of Christ when he gladly accepted martyrdom in the boiling oil.

May St. John teach us the spirit of active, soulful participation in the very mysteries in which he did partake in with great faith, reverence and love. The mystery of the Lord's Table, the mystery of the Lord's Cross and the mystery of the Lord's Triumph.

Let us pray: May the people prosper, who are devoted to Thee by the affection of pious devotion, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that instructed by the holy rites, they may be made more pleasing to Thy majesty, and more, may they abound in excellent gifts. Through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.


103 posted on 03/27/2010 12:31:25 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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San Giovanni a Porta Latina

San Giovanni a Porta Latina
 

Day XXXIX. Saturday, Week V.

"God our Father, you always work to save us, and now we rejoice in the great love you give to your chosen people. Protect all who are about to become your children, and continue to bless those who are already baptized. Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen" (Collect for today).

San Giovanni a Porta Latina. This church is dedicated to the beloved disciple and is a stone's throw from the place where Saint John was said to have been placed in a vat of boiling oil before being sent to exile on the island of Patmos. Miraculously, he was not burnt by the oil. The church is medieval and is noted for its simplicity. (The photos are of the church and the small chapel where John was said to been placed in the vat of oil.)

 

San Giovanni a Porta Latina

Photo:  San Giovanni a Porta Latina. 
This building is a small chapel
where John was said to been placed in the vat of oil.)

 


104 posted on 03/27/2010 12:35:18 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

Didn’t make this last night! Oops.


105 posted on 03/28/2010 4:00:12 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Stational Church: Palm Sunday
 
 
Today's Stational Church is at the Basilica of St. John Lateran.

Information is from the Canon Regulars of St. John Cantius:

Today, begins the greatest and holiest week of the year, a week opening with triumph and closing with triumph; a week commencing with the Hosanna, continuing with the Cross and terminating in the Alleluia.

This week is a picture of our Christian life, which began with the "Hosanna to our King" on that day when, at the font, Christ our Redeemer took possession of the city of our soul. At that blessed spot He made us His disciples and gave us the Cross. "If thou will be My disciple, take Thy cross upon thyself and follow Me." He, the divine Cross-bearer, shows us the way, strengthens us while on the way, and leads us to final victory, the eternal Easter with its never-ending Alleluia!

One of the main purposes of this week is to renew the first life—i.e., the Christ-life we received in Holy Baptism—and to prepare us for the second life—the everlasting triumph with Christ, our glorious Head.

In the hustle and bustle of material things we are so apt to forget "the things that are above." Little conscious we are of the sacred mark printed indelibly upon our soul, the character of Baptism and Confirmation, the sign, which neither time nor eternity can efface, and by which we became partakers in the priesthood of the immortal Christ.

The Church needs "Palm-Sunday men and women," who with "the angels in heaven and with the children of Israel, will sing their Hosanna to the conqueror of death.

Let us pray: Grant, O Lord, that what thy people this day bodily do in Thy honor, they may perfect spiritually with complete submission, by gaining a victory over the enemy and ardently loving the work of Thy mercy. Through Christ, Our Lord. Amen. "Hosanna to the Son of David."


106 posted on 03/28/2010 4:02:33 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: combat_boots; Mercat; Condor51; mlizzy; Bigg Red; VOA
San Giovanni in Laterano

 Scala Santa or Holy Steps
 

Day XL. Passion Sunday, Holy Week.

"My God, my God, why have you abandoned me" (Responsorial Psalm for today - Ps 22:2).

San Giovanni in Laterano. Today we return to the Cathedral of Rome. Across the street are the Scala Santa or Holy Steps. These were from Pontius Pilate's palace and were used by Christ. Saint Helen brought them here from Jerusalem in the early 4th century. The faithful climb up them on their knees. In fact, they had to be covered with wood lest they be eroded away from the thousands who prayerfully ascend them each day. At the bottom are beautiful statues to help the pilgrim prepare for the ascent (see photo). Then as you go up the stairs, you are drawn into prayer through the beautiful frescos, especially of the crucifix which is suspended on the knees of God our Father (see photo). At the top is a chapel called the Sancta Sanctorum or Holy of Holies in which an icon of the Christ, the Acheiropoeton, which is said to have not been painted by human hands.

 

Mosaic of Christ commissioning the apostles to go and baptize the nations in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

 

It was begun by Saint Luke but finished by an angel. Outside is this beautiful mosaic of Christ commissioning the apostles to go and baptize the nations in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. On the left, Jesus gives the keys to Peter and blesses Constantine. On the right, Saint Peter hands the keys to Pope Leo III (795-816) and blesses Charlemagne.

Photo:   Scala Santa or Holy Steps
At the bottom are beautiful statues
to help the pilgrim prepare for the ascent

 

 

I thought you might be interested in the Palm/Passion Sunday celebration with the Holy Father, John Paul II, in the piazza of Saint Peters. We gathered an hour before, everyone bringing their own palms or olive branches with them from home. The Liturgy began with a tremendous procession of lay people from every nation, hundreds of priests, bishops, cardinals, honored concelebrants, and then the Holy Father. We gathered around the obelisk which is crowned with a true relic of the Holy Cross of Christ, the same obelisk which stood sentinel over the execution of Saint Peter a few yards from here.

 

 

We listened to the deacon intone the Gospel of the triumphant entry into Jerusalem (Lk 19:28-40) and then sang songs of praise as the procession started the climb up to the holy altar. One of the songs was “Christus vincit! Christus regnat! Christus, imperat!” These words engraved on the oblelisk: Christ conquers! Christ reigns! Christ rules! (and continues: Christus ab omni malo plebem suam defendat! – Christ will defend his people from every evil!).

 

 

Gathered around the altar, we listened to the proclamation of the Passion. It was very moving. Just as we came to the part of the crucifixion, dark ominous clouds covered the piazza. A few drops fell and the crowds scattered, just as they did 2000 years ago. It is amazing how little tolerance we have for adversity. The clouds cleared at the close of the Gospel and we gathered in sunshine around the altar to celebrate the Most Holy Eucharist.

After Mass, the Holy Father presided over the handing over the World Youth Day cross from the Italian youth to the Canadian youth. He also proclaimed its theme: “You are the Salt of the Earth! You are the Light of the World! World Youth Day will be in Toronto July 2002. I can’t wait!

 


107 posted on 03/28/2010 4:09:50 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Stational Church: Monday in Holy Week
 
 
 
Today's Stational Church is at the Church of St. Praxedes.

Information is from the Canon Regulars of St. John Cantius:

The spirit of this second day of the holiest of all weeks may be summed up in four words: Jesus, a supper, a penitent and an impenitent.

Jesus — Holy Savior, You are the center of our thoughts and love. Accept our thanks for all that You have done for our salvation.

The Last Supper—A supper for Jesus! In a few days, Jesus will make a supper for us, a "sacred banquet in which Christ is eaten," "symbol of that One Body of which He is the Head and to which He willed that we should be united as members by the closest bonds of faith, hope and charity, so that we should all speak the same thing and that there should be no divisions among us," as the Council of Trent so beautifully said.

A Penitent — Mary, "took a pound of ointment of costly nard, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair."

An impenitent-traitor — An apostle of Christ is changed into a traitor because he loved not Christ, but thirty pieces of silver. "It were better, if this man had not been born."

We entrust ourselves today to St. Praxedes, the virgin who loved Jesus with her beautiful soul, who so often in her home prepared the table for the celebration of the Eucharistic Supper, and who anointed the "feet of Christ," that is, the "lowest members" of the Mystical Body, the poor, by gladly giving to them all she possessed.

Let us pray: Help us, holy virgin, to spend this second day of Holy Week in thy spirit. Through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.


108 posted on 03/28/2010 10:47:10 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: combat_boots; Mercat; Condor51; mlizzy; Bigg Red; VOA
Santa Prassede

 

Day XLI.  Monday, Holy Week

"Defend me, Lord, from all my foes: take up your arms and come swiftly to my aid for you have the power to save me" (Entrance antiphon for today - Ps 34:1-2; 139:8).

Santa Prassede. Saint Praxedes is the sister of Saint Pudenziana (Day 21, Tuesday, Week III) and the daughter of Senator Pudens. Saint Praxedes sheltered persecuted Christians in her home. Twenty-three were discovered and slaughtered before her eyes. She then mopped up their blood and hid the sponge in a well. This was discovered and she was also martyred.

 

Built over Saint Praxedes' house, this church was one of the 25 original parishes in Rome and is easily one of the most beautiful churches in the Eternal City. A stone's throw from Saint Mary Major, it is bedecked with incredibly beautiful mosaics. In one chapel, aptly called "The Garden of Paradise", one is surrounded by golden mosaics. The first thing one sees is the Virgin and Child surrounded by Saint Zeno and his brother Saint Valentine (see photo).

 

Santa Prassede

 

Day 41 Photos


109 posted on 03/28/2010 10:53:31 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Stational Church: Tuesday in Holy Week
 
Today's Stational Church is at the Church of St. Praxedes.

Information is from the Canon Regulars of St. John Cantius:

The last Lenten Station is that of Saint Prisca on the Aventine Hill. It is only a short way from the church of Saint Sabina, from which the procession left forty days ago to visit the tombs of the Martyrs. It is significant that the point of departure and the final arrival of the Lenten stations are on the Aventine Hill, for it was considered particularly sacred by the early Christians. It was in fact here that St. Peter and St. Paul lived for some time in the house of Saints Aquila and Priscilla, which was located on the spot where the church now stands.

St. Prisca, the faithful co-worker of St. Paul in the apostolate of "Christ Crucified," leads us into the Sacred Triduum. We recommend to her our prayers and intentions. May this woman of faith, who was privileged to hear from the Doctor of the Gentiles of the power and triumph of the Cross, watch over us and assist us" that we may celebrate the mysteries of Our Lord's Passion in such a manner as to deserve to obtain God's pardon."

Let us pray: (Pause in silent prayer, reflecting on your Lenten observances.). Through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.


110 posted on 03/29/2010 10:49:28 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: combat_boots; Mercat; Condor51; mlizzy; Bigg Red; VOA
Santa Prisca

 

Day XLII. Tuesday, Holy Week


"Father, may we receive your forgiveness and mercy as we celebrate the passion and death of the Lord, who lives
and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen" (Collect for today).

Santa Prisca. Saint Prisca was baptized by Saint Peter when she was thirteen. She was thrown to the lions by Claudius (41-54), but the lion only licked her feet. She was then beheaded. Her home was made into a church by Pope Saint Eutychianus (275-283), who placed her remains under the high altar. Nearby are the remains of the house in which Aquila and his wife Priscilla (Prisca) lived (see Acts 18:1-4; Rom 16:3; 1 Cor 16:19; II Tim 4:19).
It was probably one of the first gathering places for Christians in Rome.

Day 42


111 posted on 03/29/2010 10:51:10 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Stational Church: Wednesday in Holy Week
 
 
 
Today's Stational Church is at the Basilica of St. Mary Major.

Information is from the Canon Regulars of St. John Cantius:

Could we have a more powerful leader to Jesus Christ on this, the last day of preparation, than Mary, our Most Holy Mother? Into thy hands, dearest Mother, we place the humble efforts we have made since Ash Wednesday. Mother of Our Savior, carry them, together with thy own most worthy and most pleasing merits, to the throne of divine mercy. Petition the eternal Father that through the infinite merits of His Son and through thy powerful intercession, He would "look down on this His family for which our Lord Jesus Christ hesitated not to be delivered up into the hands of wicked man, and to undergo the torment of the Cross."

If a few hours separate us from the arrival of the Paschal Mysteries. "Behold, the Savior comes. Behold His reward is with Him and His work before Him."

Only all men the Savior died — for Mary and for Judas, and for all who stand between these two. The winepress of the Cross has made one "Queen of all the Saints," and the other—God only knows! Lord, turn not away thy face from Thy servant. Mary, my Mother, pray for me that the Divine Blood of Thy Son be to me a laver of redemption and of life.


112 posted on 03/30/2010 10:09:49 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Santa Maria Maggiore

Santa Maria Maggiore, Regina Pacis, our Lady of Peace
 

Day XLIII. Wednesday, Holy Week

"The Son of May did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many" (Communion antiphon for today - Mt 20:28)

Santa Maria Maggiore. This is our second visit to Saint Mary Major. The first was
Day VIII, Wednesday, Week I. As we set our eyes on the Sacred Triduum, it is good to stand in solidarity with our Mother of Sorrows as we contemplate our Redemption. (The photo is of Regina Pacis, our Lady of Peace. It was erected by Benedict XV in 1918 in thanksgiving for the end of World War I.)

Santa Maria Maggiore

Photo:  Santa Maria Maggiore

 

 

Somehow, we have this additional picture of Santa Prisca

Santa Prisca

113 posted on 03/30/2010 10:23:14 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: combat_boots; Mercat; Condor51; mlizzy; Bigg Red; VOA

Oops, I forgot to ping you.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/2452939/posts?page=113#113


114 posted on 03/30/2010 10:24:52 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Vultus Christi

Mother of God, Portress of the Holy Mysteries

|

pannini1.jpg

Wednesday of Holy Week

Isaiah 50:4-9
Psalm 68: 8-10, 21bcd-22, 31 & 33-34 (R. 14C & b)
Matthew 26:14-25

At Saint Mary Major

Today’s Roman Stational Church is the Basilica of Saint Mary Major. We go, in spirit, to this ancient church of the Mother of God, asking her to be present to us as we prepare to cross the threshold into the Paschal Triduum. We go to the suffering Christ, to the Crucified, to the Risen One with and through his most holy Mother. The Virgin of Sorrows is the Portress of the Holy Mysteries, the Keeper of the Door of Christ’s Pierced Heart, the Mother of our Joy. We will return again to Saint Mary Major for the Mass of Easter Day to sing our joy to the Mother of God -- Regina caeli, laetare! -- and to share in the joy that was hers at the resurrection of Christ. By framing the Paschal Triduum between two stations at the church of Saint Mary Major, the Roman liturgy suggests that the mystery of Christ is given us enveloped in Mary. Mary, like the Church, embodies and contains the mystery of Christ.

Christ in the Glory of God the Father

We sing today’s Introit in the presence of the Mother of Jesus. “In the name of Jesus let every knee bow, of those that are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth; for the Lord became obedient unto death, even to the death of the cross. Therefore our Lord Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the Father (Phil 2:10, 8, 11). She who was the witness of his sufferings on Calvary is the witness of his glory in heaven, for she “has chosen the better part which shall not be taken away from her” (Lk 10:42).

We confess the self-emptying obedience of Christ, obedience even to the death of the cross, calling him LORD. We summon the entire cosmos -- things in heaven, on earth, and under the earth -- to adoration of his Name! Already, we lift our eyes to the see the glory of the risen and ascended Christ. The very melody of the introit scales an entire octave to soar into the heights, obliging us to “seek the things that are above” (Col 3:1). Dame Aemiliana speaks of “the irresistible, shining tone of triumph with which today’s Mass straightaway puts the approaching shadows of evening to flight.” Like Saint Stephen at the hour of his death, we see Christ in the glory of God the Father. “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing on the right hand of God” (Ac 7:56). The Crucified is our Kyrios, the triumphant king, raised up into the glory of the Father.

Gibbeted on the Cross

The Collect echoes the Introit with its motif of cross and resurrection. Monsignor Knox translates it this way: “For our sakes, O God, and of the fiend’s power to rid us, thou wouldst have thy Son gibbeted on the Cross; O that we thy servants, may find grace to rise again with him.” The Latin text refers to the patibulum of the cross, the gibbet, an instrument of torture and execution. Christ, though innocent, goes to a criminal’s death. The cross is attached to the body of Christ to become the instrument by which he routs the power of the enemy.

The Tree and the Garden

The wood by which Satan sought to uproot the kingdom of God from creation becomes the wood by which Satan is catapulted out of it. The tree by which Satan sought to poison the good and beautiful work of God in the beginning -- “And God saw everything that he had made, and behold it was very good” (Gen 1:31) -- becomes the new shoot by which God’s lovely garden is replanted to flourish, irrigated by the water and the blood flowing from the side of Christ. Here too is an echo of the cosmic imagery of the Introit: “. . . . in heaven, on earth, and under the earth.” “Behold,” he says, “I make all things new” (Rev 21:5).

Newness of Life

We ask in the Collect that we may come to the grace of the resurrection. The Prayer Over the People will spell out for us exactly what this means: newness of life. The grace of the resurrection means forsaking all the old and ugly things by which we open the garden of Christ’s new creation to the hateful hissing of the Evil One. For Saint Bernard and his disciples the monastery is to be nothing less than a paradisus claustralis, a cloistered paradise, a garden enclosed in which one lives a new life, a life made beautiful by grace. “A garden enclosed is my sister, my bride, a garden enclosed, a fountain sealed” (Ct 4:12).

We are to let go of what is old. The hope-chest of the bride of Christ is empty; it is the treasure of her poverty. We are to hold nothing of the sinful past in reserve. Only then will we be able to inhale the sweet fragrance of the risen Christ. Only then will Christ say to each of us, “Your lips distill nectar, my bride; honey and milk are under your tongue; the scent of your garments is like the scent of Lebanon” (Ct 4:11).

Christ Sustains the Weary

All of this would be daunting were we not sustained by the word of the suffering Christ. “The Lord God,” he says “has given me the tongue of those who are taught, that I may know how to sustain with a word him that is weary” (Is 50:4). Christ sustains us in our weariness with every word of his uttered from the cross. He sustains us with every word of his repeated by the Church, over and over again, in the Psalter. He sustains us with every word of his heard, repeated, prayed, and held in the heart by means of lectio divina. Every word of his is, in some way, the application of the virtus crucis, the power of the cross, to our infirmity, to our weakness, to our misshapen, fragmented, selves. It is by the word of the suffering Christ, a communication of the power of the cross, that we are changed, that the garden of his delights is planted in the midst of us, that things broken are made whole again. The cross of Christ is both ambo and altar. From the ambo of the cross our Lord utters the word that sustains; from the altar of the cross he gives the sacrificial food of his Body and Blood.

Tears in His Chalice

The Communion Antiphon begins today with a mysterious word, a word of the suffering Christ, given to sustain us. Potum meum cum fletu temperebam. “I mingled my drink with weeping” (Ps 101:10). The chalice is given Christ by the Father. “Father, if thou art willing, remove this cup from me; nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done” (Lk 22:42). The chalice of Christ’s sufferings is made full when he adds to it his own tears, the tears of a Man, the tears of God. This is the chalice offered us in the Eucharist: a communion with the suffering Christ, a communion in his blood and in his tears. He mingled his drink with weeping to make our drink sweet. He was lifted up and thrown down (cf. Ps 101:10) that we who are thrown down might, by grace, be lifted up. He became withered like the grass (cf. Ps 101:11) that the garden of the kingdom might be planted and flourish and grow beautiful among us.

The Time to Have Mercy

See, already he arises to have mercy on Sion (cf. Ps 101:13), for the time to have mercy is come! At Cana he said to his mother Mary, “My hour has not yet come” (Jn 2:4). Today, Mother Church sings, “The time to have mercy is come” (Ps 101:13). With these words she ushers in these final hours before the Paschal Triduum. It is the time to have mercy.


115 posted on 03/31/2010 1:50:25 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: combat_boots; Mercat; Condor51; mlizzy; Bigg Red; VOA
San Giovanni in Laterano

 

San Giovanni in Laterano

Day V.   Holy Thursday

"Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God" (Communion Antiphon for today - Mt 4:4)

San Giovanni in Laterano. Saint John Lateran is the Cathedral of Rome, one of the four major basilicas, site of five ecumenical councils, home of the popes until 1304 when they left for Avignon, and the first church to be dedicated to the Holy Redeemer (324). The Lateran family property was given to Pope Merchiades (311-314) by Constantine shortly after his conversion (10/28/312). Pope Sylvester I (314-335) built and consecrated the basilica in 324. During the consecration, a bust of the Lord appeared in the apse for all to see. Centuries later, it was placed under the additional patronage of Saints John the Baptist (10th C) and John the Evangelist (12th C).

The papal altar contains the relic of the original altar said to have been used by Saint Peter and the early Popes. Above it is the relics of the heads of both Saints Peter and Paul. It is no wonder it is considered "the Mother and Head of all the churches in the City and in the World (omnium urbis et orbis ecclesiarum mater et caput).

 

And for Holy Thursday too.

 

San Giovanni in Laterano

 Scala Santa or Holy Steps
 

Day XL. Passion Sunday, Holy Week.

"My God, my God, why have you abandoned me" (Responsorial Psalm for today - Ps 22:2).

San Giovanni in Laterano. Today we return to the Cathedral of Rome. Across the street are the Scala Santa or Holy Steps. These were from Pontius Pilate's palace and were used by Christ. Saint Helen brought them here from Jerusalem in the early 4th century. The faithful climb up them on their knees. In fact, they had to be covered with wood lest they be eroded away from the thousands who prayerfully ascend them each day. At the bottom are beautiful statues to help the pilgrim prepare for the ascent (see photo). Then as you go up the stairs, you are drawn into prayer through the beautiful frescos, especially of the crucifix which is suspended on the knees of God our Father (see photo). At the top is a chapel called the Sancta Sanctorum or Holy of Holies in which an icon of the Christ, the Acheiropoeton, which is said to have not been painted by human hands.

Mosaic of Christ commissioning the apostles to go and baptize the nations in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

It was begun by Saint Luke but finished by an angel. Outside is this beautiful mosaic of Christ commissioning the apostles to go and baptize the nations in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. On the left, Jesus gives the keys to Peter and blesses Constantine. On the right, Saint Peter hands the keys to Pope Leo III (795-816) and blesses Charlemagne.

Photo:   Scala Santa or Holy Steps
At the bottom are beautiful statues
to help the pilgrim prepare for the ascent

I thought you might be interested in the Palm/Passion Sunday celebration with the Holy Father, John Paul II, in the piazza of Saint Peters. We gathered an hour before, everyone bringing their own palms or olive branches with them from home. The Liturgy began with a tremendous procession of lay people from every nation, hundreds of priests, bishops, cardinals, honored concelebrants, and then the Holy Father. We gathered around the obelisk which is crowned with a true relic of the Holy Cross of Christ, the same obelisk which stood sentinel over the execution of Saint Peter a few yards from here.

We listened to the deacon intone the Gospel of the triumphant entry into Jerusalem (Lk 19:28-40) and then sang songs of praise as the procession started the climb up to the holy altar. One of the songs was “Christus vincit! Christus regnat! Christus, imperat!” These words engraved on the oblelisk: Christ conquers! Christ reigns! Christ rules! (and continues: Christus ab omni malo plebem suam defendat! – Christ will defend his people from every evil!).

Gathered around the altar, we listened to the proclamation of the Passion. It was very moving. Just as we came to the part of the crucifixion, dark ominous clouds covered the piazza. A few drops fell and the crowds scattered, just as they did 2000 years ago. It is amazing how little tolerance we have for adversity. The clouds cleared at the close of the Gospel and we gathered in sunshine around the altar to celebrate the Most Holy Eucharist.

After Mass, the Holy Father presided over the handing over the World Youth Day cross from the Italian youth to the Canadian youth. He also proclaimed its theme: “You are the Salt of the Earth! You are the Light of the World! World Youth Day will be in Toronto July 2002. I can’t wait!


116 posted on 04/01/2010 2:27:34 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: combat_boots; Mercat; Condor51; mlizzy; Bigg Red; VOA

This last Sunday, Mercy Sunday was the last Stational Church. So — being that both these sites didn’t go that far — I am pinging you and will post the sites from another source through the rest of Lent and then Octave of Easter

However, I am pinging you only this one time.


117 posted on 04/12/2010 3:02:15 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

The Station today is at St. John Lateran. Maundy Thursday is devoted to the institution of the Eucharist and the priesthood. On this day the bishop blesses the Holy Oils; thus is made clear that the sacraments have their source in Christ and derive their fruitfulness from the paschal mystery of salvation.


118 posted on 04/12/2010 3:06:24 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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The Station today is at the church of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem which contains parts of the true Cross and one of the nails of the Crucifixion. The Church commemorates the redemption of the world with the reading of the Passion, the Collects in which the Church prays with confidence for the salvation of all men, the veneration of the Cross and the reception of Our Lord reserved in the Blessed Sacrament.


119 posted on 04/12/2010 3:09:45 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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The Station today is at St. John Lateran. During the afternoon of Holy Saturday the faithful were summoned here for the final scrutiny of the catechumens. Then, in the evening began the vigil or night of watching which concluded at dawn with the solemn baptisms — the neophytes, plunged into the baptismal waters and there buried with Christ, were born to the life of grace at the very time when our Savior came forth triumphant from the tomb at dawn on Easter morning.


120 posted on 04/12/2010 3:12:28 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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The Station is at St. Mary Major, the principal church of all those that are dedicated to the Mother of God in the holy city. This is to associate with the Paschal solemnity the memory of her, who, more than all other creatures, had merited its joys, not only because of the exceptional share she had had in all the sufferings of Jesus, but also because of the unshaken faith wherewith, during those long and cruel hours of his lying in the tomb, she had awaited his Resurrection.


121 posted on 04/12/2010 3:23:14 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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At Rome, the Station for today is at the basilica of St. Peter. On Saturday, the catechumens received the Sacrament of regeneration in the Lateran basilica of our Savior; yesterday, they celebrated the Resurrection in the magnificent church of St. Mary; it is just that they should come, on this third day, to pay their grateful devotions to Peter, on whom Christ has built his whole Church.


122 posted on 04/12/2010 3:24:49 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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At Rome, the Station for today is in the basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls. The church is impatient to lead her white-robed newly baptized to the Apostle of the Gentiles. Though he is not the foundation of the Church, he is the companion of Peter's labors in Rome, his fellow-martyr, and the preacher of the Gospel to the Gentiles.


123 posted on 04/12/2010 3:27:25 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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At Rome, the Station is in the basilica of St. Lawrence, outside the Walls. It is looked upon as the most important of the many churches built by Rome in honor of her favorite martyr, whose body lies under the high altar. The newly baptized were led here today that they might learn, from the example of so brave and generous a soldier of Christ, how courageous they should be in confessing their faith, and how faithful in living up to their baptismal vows.

124 posted on 04/12/2010 3:30:24 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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At Rome, the Station is in the basilica of the twelve Apostles. The newly baptized were brought, today, into the church dedicated to the witnesses of the Resurrection, where repose the bodies of two out of the twelve: St. Philip and St. James the Less. An ancient inscription shows that this church was formerly dedicated to Philip and James.



125 posted on 04/12/2010 3:32:19 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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In Rome, the Station is at the church of St. Mary ad Martyrs. It was the ancient pantheon of Agrippa, and had been dedicated to all the false gods; it was given by the Emperor Phocas to St. Boniface IV, who consecrated it to the Mother of God and all the


126 posted on 04/12/2010 3:34:45 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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In Rome, the Station is at the church of St. John Lateran, the mother church of Christendom. Eight days ago the Easter vigil liturgy took place in this basilica. Today the neophytes return a final time to the place of baptism.


127 posted on 04/12/2010 3:36:57 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
Divine Mercy Sunday:


The last stational procession is held at the Church of St. Pancras. Those newly baptized are now full fledged members of the Christian community. This church is most appropriate since St. Pancras was a young man of fourteen who sealed his baptismal promises with his blood.


128 posted on 04/12/2010 3:41:48 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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