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April 21, 2018

Children should be baptized in the faith, Pope Francis says

  Pope Francis spoke about the Sacrament of Baptism on Wednesday, emphasizing the importance of the Catholic practice of baptizing infants, since the grace of the Holy Spirit helps them to grow in virtue. “Why baptize a child who does not understand?” the pope asked April 11. “When we baptize a child, the Holy Spirit enters that child, and the Holy Spirit makes… the Christian virtues grow in that child, who will then flourish.” Though we hope that when a child grows up he or she will understand and desire Baptism for themselves, to withhold the sacrament from a child…

Pentecost Sunday

ENTRANCE ANTIPHON            WIS 1:7 The Spirit of the Lord has filled the whole world and that which contains all things understands what is said, alleluia.   COLLECT O God, who by the mystery of today’s great feast sanctify your whole Church in every people and nation, pour out, we pray, the gifts of the Holy Spirit across the face of the earth and, with the divine grace that was at work when the Gospel was first proclaimed, fill now once more the hearts of believers. Through our Lord.   FIRST READING A reading from the Acts of the Apostles Acts…

Narrowing Down Our Ways

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

This week, our Lord Jesus wants us to realize that the Gospel is not a matter of how many will be saved but of how one may be saved. He likens the spiritual journey to a “narrow door” of trials and tribulations, and only those who embrace it will be saved. The Lord makes a number of important points today: a) Salvation requires effort – we must do our very best. Complacency is not an option. We are saved by faith, no doubt, but faith without good works is to no avail. b) We must utilize the opportunity we have…

The Assumption of Mary into Heaven

On the 15th of August every year the Church remembers, honours and gives glory to God for the historic assumption of the new Eve and Spouse of the Holy Spirit-Mary Immaculate, Our Holy Mother and Mother of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. If Our God, should assumed Enoch and Elijah into heaven (Gen5:24, 2Kings 2:11), if He should promise assumption to all who will be found to be righteous at the end of time (lThessa4:17), then it is to be expected that He should honour and reward His sinless Mother with the same favour. Assumption into heaven is the…

The Marathon of Fire

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

Today Jesus brings fire to the world! It is a fire of love, which restores humanity to a meaningful and fulfilling existence. The fire is a sign of the presence of the Spirit of God on earth. It has come to take root and gradually cultivate a civilisation of peace, justice and love. Paradoxically, the fire has come both to build up and to destroy. For those about to be saved, it purifies from what is coarse, stale or debasing and it remoulds and transforms. But for the proud and arrogant – those on the path of perdition – the…

Sunday Reading: SEVENTH SUNDAY OF EASTER

ENTRANCE ANTIPHON Cf. Ps 27:7-9 O LORD, hear my voice, for I have called to you; of you my heart has spoken: Seek his face; hide not your face from me, alleluia.   COLLECT Graciously hear our supplications, O Lord, so that we, who believe that the Saviour of the human race is with you in your glory, may experience, as he promised, until the end of the world, his abiding presence among us. Who lives and reigns with you…   FIRST READING A reading from the Acts of the Apostles 7:55-60 Theme: “I see the Son of man standing…

Rethinking Our Baptism

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

The Baptism of the Lord signals the transition from the Old to the New Testament; from the voice to the Word; from the best man to the Bridegroom; from John the Baptist to Jesus the Christ. In the liturgical calendar, today marks the switch from the Christmas season to Ordinary Time. Jesus’ baptism signalled the inauguration of his public ministry, and also his public endorsement by the Father: “You are my son, the beloved, my favour rests on you.” John the Baptist also endorsed him by proclaiming: “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world”…

How Holy Spirit brought Igbo Leaders to Assumpta Cathedral Owerri

  Like the day of Pentecost, when the Jews from various nations gathered at Jerusalem to celebrate the feast, so it was on Pentecost Sunday, May 24, 2015 when Igbo leaders from all the Igbo speaking states assembled at the Maria Assumpta Cathedral, Owerri to celebrate Mass. Among hundreds of traditional rulers present at the Mass were: Eze Emmanuel Njemanze of Owere, Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, Eze Isaac Ikonne of Aba etc. Also present were top ranking politicians from various states of the East. The gathering was at the instance of Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, first executive governor of…

The Pentecost of Unity

Pastors corner with Fr Henry Ibe

  “Pentecost” comes from the Greek word for “fiftieth.” Fifty days from the day of Passover, the Jews celebrated the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot), commemorating the giving of the Law (Torah) at Mount Sinai. While Passover signified the people’s freedom from bondage, Shavuot signified their becoming God’s covenant people by the acceptance of the Law. Being a pilgrim festival, Pentecost was thus a most fitting time for the Holy Spirit to come and light the fire of his love in the hearts of the disciples – empowering them to reach out to the multitude gathered in Jerusalem from many countries….

Catching them young for Christ, Solution to moral decay – Says Group

It has been observed that the massive moral decadency in the country is posing a tremendous challenge to the young generation.  Some analysts have traced this to lack of moral education and unfavorable economic situation in the country. This was looked into during an annual celebration of Our Lady, the Pillar of Salvation group, held at Sacred Heart Akwakuma with the theme: “Catch them Young”. The officiating priest, Rev. Fr. Kevin Ugoamadi spoke on the need for young people to desist from evil and social vices but rather pray fervently for God’s grace and the Holy Spirit to guide them…

Gird your loins, stand up to your callings

–  Fr. Anyanwu admonishes knights As KSM Ahiara diocese invests 21 into 2nd degree Members of the Knights of St. Mulumba (KSM), Ahiara Diocese, have been advised to gird on their loins and stand up to their callings as worthy soldiers of Christ who have been empowered by the Holy Spirit. These words were contained in a homily delivered by Rev. Fr. Dr. Stanley Anyanwu, Chaplain Ezinihitte Sub-Council, during a thanksgiving Mass to mark this year’s 2nd degree investiture of the Order at St. Brigid’s Catholic Parish Ahiara, Mbaise, Sunday, June 8, 2014. Introducing the Mass, Rev. Fr. Chamberline Irozuru…

WHEN IGNORANCE IS REAL BLISS

Of all the monotheistic (one God) religions in the world, only Christianity believes in the Trinity. The Church teaches that, “In God there are three Divine Persons, really distinct and equal in all things, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.”This is a unique mark of our faith. No doubt it is very hard to comprehend! How can God be both one and three? How can the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit be fully God, and yet distinct persons? Our minds cannot grasp this completely, but that very fact makes the doctrine ring true. It shows that it is…

Pentecost – A period of spiritual rejuvenation

In the history of the Old Testament world, Pentecost was known to be a popular Jewish festival.  Usually this feast was celebrated to commemorate the liberation of the Israelites from their bondage in Egypt.  The initial name given to this feast was tabernacle and it was celebrated 50 days after the Passover.  Traditionally the apostles like every Jew gathered to celebrate this customary feast and suddenly this great vent of all ages took place; an event which literally implied the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. The historic event of the Pentecost is succinctly described in the Acts of the Apostles…

Pentecost: A celebration of Jesus gift of the Holy Spirit

Pentecost is a great day in the Church’s life.  It is a celebration of Jesus gift of the Holy spirit to the Church and to all the baptized.   Today, Sunday June 8, we recall the powerful events in Jerusalem on that first Pentecost Sunday.  Before then, the disciples were frightened behind closed doors.  On Pentecost, the doors were opened as they received the Holy Spirit in a drama of wind and flame and are suddenly unified by mission and purpose.  They become confident and courageous.  The Holy Spirit has remained with the church.   Our second reading today from…

Sunday Readings: PENTECOST SUNDAY 8/6/2014

Sunday readings

ENTRANCE ANTIPHON   Wis 1:7 The Spirit of the Lord fills the whole world. It holds all things together and knows every word spoken by man, alleluia.   Or Rom 5: 5. 10: 11 The love of God has been poured into our hearts by his Spirit living in us, alleluia.   OPENING PRAYER God our Father, let the Spirit you sent on your Church to begin the teaching of the gospel continue to work in the world through the hearts of all who believe.   FIRST READING A reading from the Acts of the Apostles Theme: They were all filled…

THE KINGDOM IS AMONG US BUT NOT YET COMPLETE

Our God is a God of love.  He does not save man with him; therefore He enters into covenant with His people: salvation is the meeting of two fidelity.  But if God is faithful, the people are not.  Under the action of the prophets hope and expectation rises, of a man who finally knows how to give God absolute, unconditional fidelity: the Messiah.  When He comes, God will accord His people the promised fullness.  A promise of life such that there is nothing more in common between the present and the new paradise.  A new earth, new heavens.  A new…

Our Blessed Mother Mary and Our Christian Witnessing

Introduction The person and role of Mary in the church is a very significant feature of Catholic life. The tradition of asking for her intercession and honouring her in countless ways are part of our tradition that goes back to the first centuries of the Church. We have to acknowledge that in the recent times the place of Mary in theology and in the Church and devotion to her has become somewhat ambiguous. Older people nostalgically remember colourful processions, May crowing of statues of the Madonna, novenas and sodalities in her honour and the daily recitation of the family rosary…