October 2016


Journalists: That journalists, in carrying out their work, may always be motivated by respect for truth and a strong sense of ethics.

Journalists are obligated to provide news and commentary that are truthful. To do otherwise is to sin against the eighth Commandment. The Catechism says: “By the very nature of their profession, journalists have an obligation to serve the truth and not offend against charity in disseminating information.” In other words, though it is important to report news honestly, the journalist must also respect the dignity of others.

The Catechism continues: “The information provided by the media is at the service of the common good. Society has a right to information based on truth, freedom, justice, and solidarity. The proper exercise of this right demands that the content of the communication be true and—within the limits set by justice and charity—complete. Further, it should be communicated honestly and properly. This means that in the gathering and in the publication of news, the legitimate rights and dignity of man should be upheld.”

Like the journalists, the consumers of media also have a serious obligation. We are to be discerning in our use of media. The Catechism says: “The means of social communication (especially the mass media) can give rise to a certain passivity among users, making them less than vigilant consumers of what is said or shown. Users should practice moderation and discipline in their approach to the mass media. They will want to form enlightened and correct consciences the more easily to resist unwholesome influences.”

As we pray for journalists this month we also examine ourselves and ask whether we spend an inordinate amount of time using media simply out of curiosity and an appetite for the sensational? Do we use reputable sources of information? Where do we receive our information about the Church?

What resources are available to help me understand from a Christian perspective what is going on in the world and the Church?

2 Peter 3: 14-18 “Be on your guard not to be led into the error of the unprincipled.”


World Mission Day: That World Mission Day may renew within all Christian communities the joy of the Gospel and the responsibility to announce it.

In his Message for the 90th World Mission Day which will be celebrated on October 23, Pope Francis called the work of evangelization an “immense work of mercy, both spiritual and material.” He went on to say that “all of us are invited to ‘go out’ as missionary disciples, each generously offering our talents, creativity, wisdom and experience to bring the message of God’s tenderness and compassion to the entire human family. By virtue of the missionary mandate, the Church cares for those who do not know the Gospel, because she wants everyone to be saved and to experience the Lord’s love.”

This is what motivated Jesus, his disciples, St. Paul, and the Church throughout the centuries. It is what motivates us—an all-consuming desire for the salvation of every human soul. Pope Francis wrote: “As they travel through the streets of the world, the disciples of Jesus need to have a love without limits, the same measure of love that our Lord has for all people. We proclaim the most beautiful and greatest gifts that he has given us: his life and his love.”

But how can we have such “a love without limits”? We find it when we encounter Jesus in the Scriptures and the Sacraments, especially the Eucharist. As the Pope wrote: “When we welcome and follow Jesus by means of the Gospel and sacraments, we can, with the help of the Holy Spirit, become merciful as our heavenly Father is merciful; we can learn to love as he loves us and make of our lives a free gift, a sign of his goodness.”

Every day, we can “make of our lives a free gift” by offering its minutes and hours for the salvation of every person. In doing this we become missionaries without even leaving home and our entire life, joined to Jesus’ perfect offering of himself on the cross and in the Eucharist, becomes a sign of merciful love in a world that desperately needs it.

How is evangelization an “immense work of mercy”?

2 Corinthians 5: 14-21 “The love of Christ impels us.”

Links for October, 2016

Universal Intention:

For Reflection:

Evangelization Intention:

For more information and reflection:

September 2016


Centrality of the Human Person: That each may contribute to the common good and to the
building of a society that places the human person at the center.

Made in the image of God and redeemed by the Son of God, each person is sacred. The individual ought to be at the center of society which protects and fosters the dignity of each.

From this reality arises “the common good” which the Catechism says “concerns the life of all” and consists in “what is needed to lead a truly human life: food, clothing, health, work, education and culture, suitable information, the right to establish a family, and so on.” Because human beings are social by nature, “the good of each individual is necessarily related to the common good, which in turn can be defined only in reference to the human person.”

Unfortunately the world does not operate in this way. In many places the power, wealth, and comfort of some come before the common good and the sanctity of human life. Addressing this situation in his Exhortation “The Joy of the Gospel,” Pope Francis wrote: “The dignity of each human person and the pursuit of the common good are concerns which ought to shape all economic policies.”

He went on to say that only openness to God will bring about the necessary change: “It is vital that government leaders and financial leaders take heed and broaden their horizons, working to ensure that all citizens have dignified work, education, and healthcare. Why not turn to God and ask him to inspire their plans? I am firmly convinced that openness to the transcendent can bring about a new political and economic mindset which would help to break down the wall of separation between the economy and the common good of society.”

Jesus said that the greatest commandment is to love God and to love one’s neighbor. We pray with Pope Francis that all may live that commandment by placing God’s beloved creature, the human person, at the center and work for the common good of all.

How do the centrality of the human person and the common good influence the choices I make, especially when I vote?

Genesis 1: 27 In the divine image God created humanity.


Mission to Evangelize: That by participating in the Sacraments and meditating on Scripture, Christians may become more aware of their mission to evangelize.

The Mass consists of two parts—the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist. In the first, we hear about God’s love and in the second we receive that love in the flesh as Jesus offers himself to the Father for the salvation of all and then gives us his Body and Blood. We are finally sent forth to live the Mass in our daily lives. Our sharing of the love we have received is evangelization.

Jesus was so passionately in love with humanity that he suffered and died for us. Through Word and Sacrament we now share in his passion and offer ourselves with him for the salvation of souls. Pope Francis said: “Mission is a passion for Jesus and at the same time a passion for his people. When we pray before Jesus crucified, we see the depth of his love which gives us dignity and sustains us. At the same time, we realize that the love flowing from Jesus’ pierced heart expands to embrace the People of God and all humanity. We realize once more that he wants to make use of us to draw closer to his beloved people.”

The Pope went on to say that “all the faithful are called to live their baptismal commitment to the fullest, in accordance with the personal situation of each.” In baptism we were joined to the Body of Christ. The Eucharist strengthens our life in Christ so that we can go forth and be his living witnesses wherever we are.

We pray this month that we may not only receive the love that Jesus gives us in Word and Sacrament, but also give that love to a world that is looking for true love but unaware of where it can be found. We know, and we don’t want to keep the answer to ourselves!

How do the Scriptures and Sacraments make me more aware of Jesus’ passion for mission? In what ways does this passion lead me to offer myself with Jesus for the ongoing work of salvation?

Luke 24: 13-35 “Were not our hearts burning within us…?”

Links for September 2016