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March 13, 2014

Pope Francis began his pontificate under the sign of St. Joseph, only those who serve with love are able to protect!

March 13, is the first anniversary of the election of Pope Francis in 2013 and these last 365 days of his papacy have been characterized as a “time of mercy”, by the Pope himself. During these last twelve months the Pope who said he was called “from the ends of the earth”  asked us to pray for him.  He is called the “priest of the world”, by his secretary Msgr. Alfred Xuereb who said that the new pope “has not wasted a minute! He works tirelessly and, when he feels the need to take a moment's pause, he closes his eyes and does nothing: he simply sits and prays the Rosary”.  I want to pick out a few highlights that were important to me and indicated the path of Hope the Pope is leading us to travel down. 

I read some where that John Paul II gave us the New Catechism, Benedict XVI explained its meanings and reasons for our faith and Pope Francis is showing us how to live the faith! This is a time for actions not words!

The pontificate of Pope Francis began with his Inaugural Mass on March 19, 2013, under the sign of St. Joseph, father and protector of  the Holy Family and the Church. Also under the sign of St. Francis, whose name he choose, the protector of the earth, and all who are on the earth, the man of peace.

The essential message in the inaugural  homily given by Pope Francis to open his pontificate draws on the image of St. Joseph, spouse of Mary, head of the Holy Family. And that message is to "protect." This message is important at a time when the figure of the person who "protects," be he or she a father, a mother, a priest, a scholar, a leader, is under attack -- in a time when the "protection" is entrusted to others, or to none, when the "protectors" are anonymous, or hidden, or when they simply don't exist. To "protect" means to make sure what one protects is not harmed, not hurt. 

Only those like St Joseph,  
who serve with love are able to protect!

"He must be inspired by the lowly, concrete and faithful service which marked
Saint Joseph and, like him, he must open his arms to protect all of God’s people and embrace with tender affection the whole of humanity, especially the poorest, the weakest, the least important, those whom Matthew lists in the final judgment on love: the hungry, the thirsty, the stranger, the naked, the sick and those in prison (cf. Mt 25:31-46). Only those who serve with love are able to protect!"

"How does Joseph respond to his calling to be the protector of Mary, Jesus and the Church? By being constantly attentive to God, open to the signs of God's presence and receptive to God's plans, and not simply to his own. This is what God asked of David, as we heard in the first reading. God does not want a house built by men, but faithfulness to his word, to his plan. It is God himself who builds the house, but from living stones sealed by his Spirit. Joseph is a "protector" because he is able to hear God's voice and be guided by his will; and for this reason he is all the more sensitive to the persons entrusted to his safekeeping. He can look at things realistically, he is in touch with his surroundings, he can make truly wise decisions. In him, dear friends, we learn how to respond to God's call, readily and willingly, but we also see the core of the Christian vocation, which is Christ! Let us protect Christ in our lives, so that we can protect others, so that we can protect creation!"
"....Whenever human beings fail to live up to this responsibility, whenever we fail to care for creation and for our brothers and sisters, the way is opened to destruction and hearts are hardened. Tragically, in every period of history there are “Herod's” who plot death, wreak havoc, and mar the countenance of men and women."

This emphasis on "protecting" also seems to recall a passage in the Book of Revelation which focuses on "not hurting," that is, protecting.
In Chapter 7 of Revelation, an angel ascends from the east, bearing "the seal of the living God." The angel cried out in a "loud voice" to the other "angels," who had been "hurting" the earth. Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. Rev.7:3

"To protect Jesus with Mary, to protect the whole of creation, to protect each person, especially the poorest, to protect ourselves: this is a service that the Bishop of Rome is called to carry out, yet one to which all of us are called, so that the star of hope will shine brightly. Let us protect with love all that God has given us!"--Pope Francis

St. Joseph Hoped against Hope!
"ITE AD JOSEPH!" -"GO TO JOSEPH!" -St.Theresa of Avilia

Did You know that St Joseph was also present at the last Apparition of Fatima on October 13, 1917? The children saw him Blessing the world with the Child Jesus in his arms as the crowds beheld the Miracle of the Sun.

Follow links:

St. Joseph's Humble Appearance at Fatima Announces A Crisis of Fatherhood in Society and the Church!

St Joseph Protector of Church- Vatican II-Conversion of Russia & Timeline Leading to end of Soviet Union!

The Pope asked Our Lady to help him during his pontificate and also for the prayers of all Christians
Looking back on this first year of Surprises, the Pope  has shown a great devotion to Mary, since the very first day of his pontificate. One of the first things he did in the inauguration of his papacy was to ask Our Lady to help him during his pontificate and for the prayers of all Christians.


"I implore the intercession of the Virgin Mary, Saint Joseph, Sts. Peter & Paul, and Saint Francis, that the Holy Spirit may accompany my ministry, and I ask all of you to pray for me! Amen"-Pope Francis Inaugural Mass See: A prayer for the Pope by Leo XIII

Divine providence choose the 13th of the month to elect him to the papacy. Perhaps it is an indication that his papacy was under the protection of Our Lady of the Rosary of Fatima. He requested that the Statue be brought  from Portugal to the Vatican, who  consecrated his papacy to her and also renewed the consecration of the the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on October 13th, 2013.

The Holy Father received the statue on the afternoon of Saturday, October 12th,  followed by a Marian talk. On Sunday, October 13th, the Pope offered the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in the presence of the Fatima Statue. After the Mass the pope recited the following Consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary before the Angelus.   
See: Fatima Statue visits Rome


Consecration Prayer of Pope Francis
October 13, 2013

Fatima processional crown bullet from JPII in center

 Holy Mary Virgin of Fatima, with renewed gratitude for your maternal presence
we join our voice to that of all the generations who call you blessed. We celebrate in you the works of God,
who never tires of looking down with mercy upon humanity, afflicted with the wound of sin, to heal it and save it.

Accept with the benevolence of a Mother the act of consecration that we perform today with confidence, before this image of you that is so dear to us. We are certain that each of us is precious in your eyes and that nothing of all that lives in our hearts is unknown to you.
We let ourselves be touched by your most sweet regard and we welcome the consoling caress of your smile. Hold our life in your arms:  bless and strengthen every desire for good; revive and nourish faith; sustain and enlighten hope; awaken and animate charity; guide all of us along the path of holiness.  Teach us your own preferential love for the little and the poor, for the excluded and the suffering, for sinners and the downhearted: bring everyone under your protection and entrust everyone to your beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus. Amen.
Zenet News  [Translation by Joseph Trabbic]

Pope Francis & Benedict XVI  
  Entrusted the Vatican City State 
to St. Michael the Archangel last July

This was a significant action taken by the Pope and may also signify that the pope is reinforcing the words of Venerable Paul VI.  The church is in the midst of the epic Battle of Revelation Chapter 12  with the forces of evil in the world. Evil "whose smoke has entered into the very confines  of the church. As  Pope Francis entrusted the Vatican City State to St Michael the Archangel he said :"Though the devil always tries to disfigure the face of the Archangel and that of humanity, God is stronger, it is His victory and His salvation that is offered to all men. We are not alone on the journey or in the trials of life, we are accompanied and supported by the Angels of God, who offer, so to speak, their wings to help us overcome so many dangers, in order to fly high compared to those realities that can weigh down our lives or drag us down. In consecrating Vatican City State to St. Michael the Archangel, I ask him to defend us from the evil one and banish him. "  Read more....

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