Special Request for Prayers for our Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

A prayer for the health of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI (from Vatican News)

Let us pray.
Almighty and Eternal God,
You are the everlasting health of
those who believe in You.

Hear our prayers for your sick servant Benedict
for whom we implore the aid of Your tender mercy,

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Monday, 10 November 2014 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of Pope St. Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today it is mentioned to us in the readings from the Holy Scriptures, of a very important role and position in the hierarchy of the Church, which all of us indeed have to be aware of, and have to adhere to. St. Paul in his letter to Titus, his friend and fellow servant of God, while he was in captivity in Rome, mentioned of the criteria which should be strictly observed when the overseers of God’s faithful ones are chosen.

And in the Gospel reading, Jesus warned His disciples against creating scandals in the faith, and as such, they should avoid creating scandal among the faithful and in the Church. Such scandals are harmful when it causes damage both physical and spiritual to the faithful and to the Church as a whole, and Jesus condemned those who have brought others into damnation because of their actions that brought about scandal and therefore not in accordance to what Jesus had taught His disciples.

How are the readings today link to each other? The bishops are very important building blocks of the Church, as the key figures that link the laity and the priests, to the Vicar of Christ, the Pope, who leads all the faithful, in union with the love of God, the true Head of the Church. The bishops, from the Latin term of their title, episcopus which means literally overseers, are truly the overseers of the faithful in their faith.

It is important that the candidates of bishops are first scrutinised thoroughly before one of them, who is found worthy and good, is selected as the bishop of a diocese. That is because the growth of the spiritual life and the well-being of the faithful ones of the Lord, depend on the state of the spiritual life of the shepherd of the flock, that is the bishop, who is the shepherd entrusted with the care of the people of God, the flock of Christ, in his diocese to be under his protection and care.

Jesus often mentioned in His teachings that we should not be hypocrites who merely show an external aspect of our faith and devotion to God, for others to see us, or even worse, for them to praise us because of what we have done. If our faith is like this, and if we pretend to be faithful for such purposes, then we may be held accountable for these actions.

It is precisely like the actions of the Pharisees, as well as the teachers of the Law, who proudly present the way they lived their faith to the people, and basked in their praise. In turn, they also misled the people by not practicing the Law with the whole of their hearts, and instead they served their own glory and purposes rather than serving the greater purpose of God.

They were bad shepherds, whose actions in opposing the Lord Jesus at every turn and opportunity were truly scandal in the faith. Their way of living and their way of seeing the world around them were also scandals of the faith, such that they were truly worthy of being rebuked endlessly by the Lord, who revealed the truth about their wickedness to the people of God, so that they may be wary of them and therefore also do their best to avoid doing the same as those wicked elders had done.

It was in particular mentioned that those who misled the little children of God are in particular to be blamed for their wickedness and evil. And indeed, those children are truly born pure and blameless, a blank and clean slate upon which, true and genuine teaching of the faith would have brought much goodness. A proper upbringing in faith for these, through proper catechism and role modelling in the faith.

If someone is to corrupt the faith by not doing what he is supposed to do, and worse still, if this person is the appointed shepherd of the people, as bishop and overseer, then it will bring much damnation to those sheep that had been entrusted to the aforementioned bishop. And in the end, the entire Church and the body of the faithful suffer, because of the wickedness and corruption this improperly elected bishop had done for his flock.

Therefore, this is why in our present time today, as it had been for quite a long time, bishops are carefully selected from among the priests, through a careful and extensive process of selection, from a shortlist produced by the diocese, to list down at first, the most worthy, holy, devoted and dedicated among the priests, to be made the bishop.

The final decision is to be done by the Vicar of Christ, the Pope, who through his representatives to the dioceses, the Apostolic nuncios and the delegates, keep in close contact with the various dioceses. Thus, it is why the responsibility and the role of the Pope is so important, as he is the Head of the entire Universal Church, and the ultimate and greatest guardian of the true and orthodox Faith.

That means, the Pope is charged with the final decision on who is truly worthy and who is truly best for the position and role of bishop for the dioceses. It is so that the Church may avoid scandal or any risk of problems that may likely arise if an unworthy individual became who they should not have become. If this happens, then the risk to the faithful sheep of the Lord is truly very, very great.

Thus, in consideration of the roles of the bishops and the Pope, even the position of the Pope, who is also the Bishop of Rome, is very, very carefully chosen, through the conclave, where the Cardinals, carefully selected members of the Church who then elect the most worthy amongst them to be the Supreme Pontiff and leader of the Universal Church.

And today, we celebrate the memory of a great Pope, whose feast we celebrate today, the very first Pope to be accorded with the title of ‘the Great’, in recognition of his great role and fundamental role in the development of the Faith and the Church. He is Pope St. Leo the Great, who lived and reigned during the waning years of the Roman Empire in the West.

Pope St. Leo the Great led the Church at the time when the civil authority and order of the Roman Empire is crumbling, especially in its western regions, including the city of Rome, and the society as it was known then, was under great threat from barbarian attacks. It was for this that Pope St. Leo the Great was mostly known for, that is in his role in stopping the great conqueror, Attila the Hun, from ransacking the Eternal City, or Rome, the Holy City of the Apostles.

When the great conqueror came, and when everyone else, including the Roman Emperor and the civil authorities all hid in fear, this holy servant of God, and the shepherd of the flocks of Christ went forth without fear and with zeal, to meet with the Hunnic king, and by the grace of God, persuaded him to retreat. Such was the courage and faith of this great Pope, that he managed to protect and prevent his flock from suffering.

However, what was less well known is the role which Pope St. Leo the Great played in the Church, and in the combatting of heresies and wickedness among the members of the Church at the time. Ever since the beginnings of the Church, there had been some among the faithful who did not remain true to the teachings of the true Faith, as they syncretised their faith, and they followed their own fancy and heretical ways of the Faith.

Therefore, many Ecumenical Councils were held in the early Church to standardise the true and orthodox teachings of the faith, and to condemn and anathemise all heresies and falsehoods in the teachings of the faith, including the errant and unfaithful bishops who misled many of their faithful, the precise scandal of the Faith mentioned earlier.

Pope St. Leo the Great was instrumental in his role in guiding the Church to keep the orthodox faith against those forces of men, who tried to subvert the teachings of the Faith to suit their own desires, their own purposes and their own wickedness. The teachings of Pope St. Leo the Great, his writings and works remain until even today, a very defining standard of the faith, which even this generation today look up to, in order to maintain the orthodox and true faith.

Therefore, on this special and sacred occasion, let us all come together and pray, pray for our bishops, our priests, and also our Pope, so that all of them will keep strongly the faith entrusted to them. So that they will keep without reservation the sound doctrine of the faith, without bending to the demands and temptations of the flesh and the world.

May Almighty God bless our Church, that day by day, our faith may grow stronger and stronger. That our Church may grow ever more faithful in the Lord. May the bishops, the shepherds of faith remain strong in their faith so that they will lead the faithful, following the examples of Pope St. Leo the Great, and abandoning all forms of fornications and evils, so that no scandal may arise, and the faithful may all benefit greatly from their care and love. God bless us all. Amen.


First Reading :


Psalm :


Gospel Reading :


Monday, 10 November 2014 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of Pope St. Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Luke 17 : 1-6

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, “Scandals will necessarily come and cause people to fall; but woe to the one who brings them about. It would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a millstone around his neck. Truly, this would be better for that person, than to cause one of these little ones to fall.”

“Listen carefully : if your brother offends you, tell him, and if he is sorry, forgive him. And if he offends you seven times in one day, but seven times he says to you, ‘I am sorry’, forgive him.”

The Apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” And the Lord said, “If you have faith, even the size of a mustard seed, you may say to this tree, ‘Be uprooted, and plant yourself in the sea!’ and it will obey you.”


Homily and Reflection :


Monday, 10 November 2014 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of Pope St. Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 23 : 1-2, 3-4ab, 5-6

The earth and its fullness belong to the Lord, the world and all that dwell in it. He has founded it upon the ocean and set it firmly upon the waters.

Who will ascend to the mountain of the Lord? Who will stand in His holy place? Those with clean hands and pure heart, who desire not what is vain.

They will receive blessings from the Lord, a reward from God, their Saviour. Such are the people who seek Him, who seek the face of Jacob’s God.


Homily and Reflection :


Monday, 10 November 2014 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of Pope St. Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Titus 1 : 1-9

From Paul, servant of God, Apostle of Christ Jesus, at the service of God’s chosen people, so that they may believe and reach the knowledge of truth and godliness. The eternal life we are waiting for was promised from the very beginning by God who never lies, and as the appointed time had come, He made it known through the message entrusted to me by a command of God, our Saviour.

Greetings to you, Titus, my true son in the faith we share. May grace and peace be with you from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. I left you on Crete because I wanted you to put right what was defective and appoint elders in every town, following my instructions.

They must be blameless, married only once, whose children are believers and not open to the charge of being immoral and rebellious. Since the overseer (or bishop) is the steward of God’s house, he must be beyond reproach : not proud, hot-headed, over-fond of wine, quarrelsome or greedy for gain.

On the contrary, he must be hospitable, a lover of what is good, wise, upright, devout and self-controlled. He must hold to the message of faith just as it was taught, so that, in his turn, he may teach sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.


Homily and Reflection :


Cardinals Update : Cardinal Franc Rode, C.M., Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and for Societies of Apostolic Life (Slovenia), turned 80, ceases to be a Cardinal-elector


On Tuesday, 23 September 2014, Cardinal Franc Rode, C.M., Cardinal-Deacon of S. Francesco Saverio alla Garbatella, Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and for Societies of Apostolic Life (Slovenia), turned 80, and therefore, according to the rules written in the Apostolic Constitution Universi Dominici Gregis, he lost his right to vote in any future conclave. Cardinal Franc Rode was born in Ljubljana, Slovenia on 5 September 1934.


Cardinal Rode was made Cardinal-Deacon of S. Francesco Saverio alla Garbatella by Pope Benedict XVI in the 2006 Consistory of Cardinals on 24 March 2006, the first Consistory of his pontificate. Cardinal Rode was made a Cardinal in honour of his position as the Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and for Societies of Apostolic Life, the branch of the Roman Curia in charge of all religious orders and all matters pertaining to religious life and profession, a position he held from 2004 to 2011. Before that, Cardinal Rode was the Metropolitan Archbishop of Ljubljana (Slovenia), the greatest and largest see in the country of Slovenia, from 1997 to 2004.



May God bless His Eminence Cardinal Rode with a blessed old age and health. May he remain strong in the faith and hopefully can perhaps still continue to work great graces and good works of love and peace just as he had once done in his long service to the Church, particularly his contributions as a member of the Roman Curia in helping the actions of the Holy See and the Pope.


The College of Cardinals now stands at 210 members in total, with 113 Cardinal-electors and 97 Cardinal non-electors. There are now a vacancy of 7 Cardinal-elector as compared to the maximum number of electors allowed in the Conclave of 120.

Next Cardinal-elector to age out (80) will be Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, S.D.B. (Italy), the Cardinal Secretary of State Emeritus of the Secretariat of State and the current Chamberlain of the Holy Roman Church of the Apostolic Camera on 2 December 2014.

Pictures of Popes and their predecessors/successors


(From UCatholic facebook page)

Depicted here are pictures of the Popes and their successors, or in the other way round, Popes and their predecessors. Most commonly between the reigning Pope and Cardinal who would be elected to succeed him.


List of Popes (and ‘future Popes’) in the depiction in chronological order :

1. Pius XI : 1922 – 1939

2. Pius XII : 1939 – 1958

3. John XXIII : 1958 – 1963

4. Paul VI : 1963 – 1978

5. John Paul I : 1978

6. John Paul II : 1978 – 2005

7. Benedict XVI : 2005 – 2013

8. Francis : 2013 – present (Will be known as Francis I if any of his future successors also pick the name Francis, who will then be Francis II)

What is our faith really about? And how to answer questions that directly address our faith (From a comment)

You see how much lies evil had planted in the heart of many in this world to lead them away from the truth in God (From my blog’s comment and my reply). Do not reject them, and do not turn them away.

Especially if they ask you about your faith in God, through the Church, stand up tall, and shielded with our faith and knowledge of that faith that we have gained through the teachings of the Church, answer confidently, in courage, in love, and of course, offer a welcoming hand for them, and teach them the truth, that they too may join us in salvation in Christ.

Let us work together to accomplish the unity of all Christians in the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church! Ut Omnes Unum Sint, ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam! That they all may be One, for the greater glory of God!

The comment :

What of the pope Petrus Romanus as described by St. Malachy in 1139 to be the next and final pope? St. Malachy’s final words regarding his full listing of all future popes (which has proven to be correct to the last detail) – “Rome, the seat of the Vatican, will be destroyed and the dreadful Judge will judge the people.”

Please pray to our Lord and Savior, our only Redeemer and mediator with God, Jesus Christ our one true King!
Ephesians 2:8-9; 1599 Geneva Bible (GNV)
8 For by [a]grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God,
9 [b]Not of works, lest any man should boast himself.

It is not through a church, catholic, evangelical, or other that we find our way. It is only with a relationship with Jesus, our Lord and Savior. It is not through saying rote prayers or seeking after a “favor” or “abolition” from any mere human (past or present).

It is only with our Lord Jesus. His mother Mary was highly “favored” which never meant she was to be placed higher than our Lord. Period. Seek after and follow Him and know others by the fruits of their hearts not the fruits of this world (fame or fortunes) as they are always meant to decieve.

Thank you for reading and seeking Him!

My reply :

I have no need to comment on that prophecy, which may after all be false and forgery. Even if that prophecy is true, it only showed that the Church led by the successor of blessed St. Peter the Apostle, remained faithful to the last, with that last Bishop of Rome as shepherd to feed the lambs of our Lord, through time of persecution of the Church, and even likely to suffer death at the hands of Satan and those who hated the Church and wished for its destruction, as it is the last bastion of Christ and His light in this world.

For grace and salvation is indeed through faith, but faith alone does not save one, and neither does work alone. For what you mentioned here of boasting is, work done without faith, but work done in faith serve only to affirm that faith in the Lord, and faith without works is dead. Faith needs to be alive, and nothing better to make it alive and manifest through our actions, in simple acts that we do in our daily lives, through our love for our neighbours and fellow men.

For believing solely in faith, to be frank, how do you even define faith? Faith is not mere words, and not mere ‘personal’ relationship, but it is as communal as it is personal. Nobody can have faith if they never show it through their good works following what Christ had taught us. It is a danger to believe that we are saved simply by faith, and then we can do as we like. Faith is through our love and works for our brethren, the poor, the weak, and the less fortunate, that through this living faith, we are justified by the Lord. Not enough by mere personal relations and personal dedications to God, for if that is the case, then the faith of the Pharisees would have been sufficient.

No! Christ mentioned that we are saved by faith, because this faith is not just once, and not just once and for all, and not through a single moment, but this faith is manifest throughout our entire life, and reflected through our prayers, our actions, and our concrete works for the good of others, and for the sake of God. The Church is the community through which we can make our faith manifest in this world even more.

Mary, the mother of our Lord, is never placed higher than our Lord Jesus Christ Himself. That is a severe misunderstanding of the true faith of our Church, and that is what people outside the Church had been led to believe by the evil one, so that they will too take part in destroying the very one and only Church that God had established.

Mary, as the mother of our Lord, in the faith of the Church, is the mother who brought Christ into this world, and through her perfect obedience of God’s will, by her answers to the Archangel Gabriel, the salvation of this world through Christ is possible. Her faith and love is proven throughout Christ’s life on earth, even to accompany Him on the foot of the Cross.

For Mary is our closest and most direct intercessor to our God, for who else is closer to Christ in this world than His own mother? Remember the wedding at Cana, when Christ apparently refused to perform the necessary miracle because ‘it was not yet His time’, but when Mary interceded for their sake, the Lord did listen and performed the miracle of water, turning into wine.

Therefore, we venerate Mary, not as a goddess, not as equal of God, but as a being so great, and so noble, and as the first and greatest of all the saints in heaven, all of whom pray for us ceaselessly before the Lord, and no one else in ever closer to God than Mary, His mother.

If only we humble ourselves and ask God, through Mary, His mother, in great humility and repentance, our prayers will surely be heard. It is of course up to God’s will, whether He will fulfill our wishes, but that is how great indeed that God works in His own mysterious ways.

Rosary, and all that dedication to Mary? Simply our way of adoring her, who is the greatest saint and the one who made all salvation possible through her acceptance of her mission, that is to bear Christ the Saviour in her, and taking care of our Lord all the way to Calvary.

She is the pillar of support of the Lord’s mission in salvation, and it is in this spirit that we dedicate our prayers through Mary, honouring her, and in honouring Mary, we honour her Son, our God.

Do not listen to the lies of Satan and the world, and learn the truth of God’s love through the Church. The Church is not perfect, and it is led by humble and sinful men, like all of us, but through the Church, and through the authority God has granted it via the Apostles, especially through Peter, God has made His power, His redemption, and His presence manifest in this world.

Our faith is communal as it is personal. It is not enough to just have a personal relationship in Christ, but we must also have a ‘communal relationship’, that is through the Church, that is the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.

God bless you, dear brother, and may God guide you to the truth, and be joined as one, that I, and all my brothers and sisters in Christ and in faith, can soon call you our brethren.