Hail to the Fisherman!  May he rest in peace!

Last week, Pope Benedict XVI traveled to Mexico.  In commemoration of his first Apostolic Visit to their country, several latino artists came together to record the official theme song of his visit. 

Now, to commemorate the 7th anniversary of Bl. John Paul’s death, here is the theme song of his 1999 visit to Mexico—a country that seemed to have a special place in his heart and whose people joyfully showered him with great affection and filial love.

Here is my poor high-school-Spanish translation of the lyrics; if I made a mistake, please let me know.

Fisherman, Christ made you the fisherman
Tell us where to find Him
In order to be with Him, happy like you.

I go sailing without a rudder;
on the open sea, reason abandons me.
Barely I survive
as a lost child.
I am looking for something that is not within me
                              
Plus, you suddenly arrive
and your word, the beacon of white light.
Take me to a safe harbor
where there is a future
where exists a buler sky.

Your word is the hope
that many souls seek
Fisherman, you will be the wind of change

You will be the friend,
that leads to a new world
in your great infinite heart
in your great infinite heart.

Yes, it costs sometimes to continue
in the shipwreck and amid so much darkness,
i
n the midst of a sea that silences
and the faith that we lack.
I go in search for a little peace.

Plus, you suddenly arrive
and your word, the beacon of white light.

Take me to a safe harbor
where there is a future
where exists a buler sky.

Your word is the hope
that many souls seek
Fisherman, you will be the wind of change

You will be the friend,
that leads to a new world
in your great infinite heart

Your word is the hope
that many souls seek
Fisherman, you will be the wind of change

You will be the friend,
that leads to a new world
in your great infinite heart

Your word is the hope
that many souls seek
Fisherman, you will be the wind of change

You will be the friend..

Now I feel like a Mexican Pope!

I really like it when Pope Benedict goes off script and speaks from his heart as he recently did in Mexico when a crowd of people gathered at the Colegio Miraflores to wish him “Buenas Noches" and to send him off to sleep with one last serenade. 

Pope Benedict doesn’t often speak extemporaneously (except when he is meeting with visiting diplomats or heads of state), but on those rare public occasions when he shares his thoughts and feelings off the top of his head, our brilliant Papa becomes even more endearing. 

And, from most all accounts, this 80-something German pope has endeared himself to the hearts of countless Mexicans who have showered him with their love and affection, and, likewise, they have found a special place in the tender heart of their Papa.  Benedicto, hermano, ya eres Mexicano!

From the National Catholic Register:

As the Holy Father returned Sunday night to the Colegio Miraflores to rest for the night, he was greeted by a crowd of the faithful who had gathered outside to catch a glimpse of him. Going off script, the Holy Father stopped to address them and to thank them for the warm welcome he had received in Mexico.

“I have made many trips, and I have never been received with so much enthusiasm,” he said, speaking in Italian, while Archbishop Christophe Pierre, the apostolic nuncio to Mexico, translated his words into Spanish.

“Now I can say that Mexico will always be in my heart,” said the Pope, wearing a sombrero charro (cowboy hat) and lifting his arms in greeting to the cheering crowd.

“For many years I have prayed for Mexico, but now I will do so much more,” he said.

“I can see why John Paul II said, ‘Now I feel like a Mexican Pope!’” he said, while the tightly packed crowd burst into cheers.

“I feel very good being with you, but you must understand that I have another trip tomorrow to Cuba. I must withdraw, but I give you my blessing,” he said, and then he blessed the crowd.

“Good night!”

At this, the mariachi band burst into song, playing, Cielito Lindo, a traditional song whose lyrics say, “Sing, don’t cry; for singing makes hearts rejoice.”

With this “mariachi farewell,” the Holy Father experienced a quintessentially Mexican tradition, one reserved for special occasions meant to be remembered.

For the many Mexicans who watched this spontaneous exchange on television, it was yet another opportunity to see the human side of Pope Benedict XVI.

“Before, I just respected the Pope,” said Miguel Ángel Torres, a young man from Xalapa who followed the events on television because he was unable to make it to León.

“Now I love him. Benedict XVI has a place in my heart.”

Always Faithful

As you probably know, the Holy Father is currently in Mexico on an Apostolic Visit with our brothers and sisters down south.  This made me think of the very first time that I had a personal encounter with Papa Benedicto. 

I took the photos above at Pope Benedict’s very first World Youth Day after having been chosen to as the Successor of St. Peter and the successor of World Youth Day’s founder, our beloved Bl. John Paul II the Great.

After morning catechesis, I decided to join thousands of other young pilgrims in lining the route that our still new Holy Father would take as part of the events to welcome him to Cologne, Germany.  On my search for the perfect spot, I came across the above group of young people from Mexico and decided to take a picture of their banner which read,  Mexico:  Siempre Fiel (Mexico:  Always Faithful).

When I first saw this back in 2005, I thought what an interesting statement to make to Pope Benedict as he passed in his Popemobile.  I took it to mean that these young Mexican pilgrims were somehow assuring the new Vicar of Christ that they and many of their countrymen are faithful to Holy Mother Church, that they have been faithful to Pope John Paul II, and that they would continue to be faithful to Pope Benedict. 

This sentiment of ongoing loyalty has a lot, I think, to do with the special relationship between Bl. John Paul II and the Mexican people.  Of course, our beloved JP2 connected with people wherever he went, but it seems to me that he had a particularly intimate connection with Mexico and Our Lady of Guadalupe. 

Whatever the reason for this unspoken bond, the people of Mexico were absolutely not shy about showing their great affection for their Polish pope.  A recent article from the Associated Press told of a tradition that young people of the Mexican city where the pope was staying would get up early in the morning and serenade the Holy Father at his temporary residence.  The young people started this special papal mananitas for Pope John Paul II and they continue it for Pope Benedict XVI.

Upon his arrival at the Guanajuato Airport, Pope Benedict gave his first address on Mexican soil in which he said,

"I am very happy to be here, and I give thanks to God for allowing me to realize the desire, kept in my heart for a long time, to confirm in the faith the People of God of this great nation in their own land. The affection of the Mexican people for the Successor of Peter, whom they always remember in their prayers, is well known."

And, he is also reported to have remarked, “This is a proud country of hospitality, and nobody feels like a stranger in your land.  I knew that, now I see it and now I feel it in my heart.

What I find surprising is that many people (yes, in the mainstream media) were genuinely surprised that the Mexican people actually love this nearly 85-year-old German man, just as they were surprised that young people would gather from around the world to hear his words and to express their deep affection for him.

Just three days ago, CNN published an article declaring, Pope’s visit overshadowed by predecessor’s legacy in Mexico.  The Miami Herald even said that Pope Benedict makes Mexicans “ache for John Paul II,” noting that the Holy Father’s upcoming trip “is drawing little excitement, underscoring the stark differences between this pontiff and his predecessor, John Paul II….”  (Yeah, tell that to the thousands of people who will wait hours just to personally greet Papa Benedicto and welcome him to their country!)  The Miami Herald even quoted Maria de las Heras, the head of a PR firm, who so optimistically concluded, Pope Benedict is the “antithesis of John Paul II.” 

Yet, today’s headline in the Chicago Sun-Times proclaims—I think with some astonishment and confusion—Pope’s arrival in Mexico sparks surprising emotion.

Surprising?"  Really?

I mean, you would have thought that Big Foot had just strolled out of some forest in the Pacific Northwest and ordered a Venti Mocha Frappuccino at Starbucks!

Surprising?  Well, that’s our Papa for you.  This brilliantly theological, and intimately pastoral German octogenarian has once again shocked mainstream journalists—perhaps its his particular Benedictine charism.  Now that their minds and preconceptions have been papally blown, these poor, clueless folks are left again wondering, “Why is this man relevant?  And to young people, for that matter!?” 

This only goes to show even further (as if you need any more evidence) that the secular media, the secular world doesn’t get it.  It doesn’t get who the pope is, whose chair he sits upon, and Who built our Church, the Church upon solid Rock.

Even though they don’t get it, the young people of Mexico do—and our Papa knows it, and responds with great paternal love and affection. 

Dear Young People,

I am happy to be able to meet with you and to see your smiling faces as you fill this beautiful square. You have a very special place in the Pope’s heart. And in these moments, I would like all the children of Mexico to know this, especially those who have to bear the burden of suffering, abandonment, violence or hunger, which in recent months, because of drought, has made itself strongly felt in some regions. I am grateful for this encounter of faith, and for the festive and joyful presence expressed in song. Today we are full of jubilation, and this is important. God wants us to be happy always. He knows us and he loves us. If we allow the love of Christ to change our heart, then we can change the world. This is the secret of authentic happiness.

This place where we stand today has a name which expresses the yearning present in the heart of each and every person: “la paz”, Peace. This is a gift which comes from on high. “Peace be with you” (Jn 20:21). These are the words of the Risen Lord. We hear them during each Mass, and today they resound anew in this place, with the hope that each one of you will be transformed, becoming a sower and messenger of that peace for which Christ offered his life.

The disciple of Jesus does not respond to evil with evil, but is always an instrument of good instead, a herald of pardon, a bearer of happiness, a servant of unity. He wishes to write in each of your lives a story of friendship. Hold on to him, then, as the best of friends. He will never tire of speaking to those who always love and who do good. This you will hear, if you strive in each moment to be with him who will help you in more difficult situations.

I have come that you may know my affection. Each one of you is a gift of God to Mexico and to the world. Your family, the Church, your school and those who have responsibility in society must work together to ensure that you receive a better world as your inheritance, without jealousies and divisions.

That is why I wish to lift up my voice, inviting everyone to protect and to care for children, so that nothing may extinguish their smile, but that they may live in peace and look to the future with confidence.

You, my dear young friends, are not alone. You can count on the help of Christ and his Church in order to live a Christian lifestyle. Participate in Sunday Mass, in catechesis, in apostolic works, looking for occasions of prayer, fraternity and charity. Blessed Cristóbal, Antonio and Juan, the child martyrs of Tlaxcala, lived this way, and knowing Jesus, during the time of the initial evangelization of Mexico, they discovered that there is no greater treasure than he. They were children like you, and from them we can learn that we are never too young to love and serve.

How I would like to spend more time with all of you, but the time has already come for me to go. We will remain close in prayer. So I invite you to pray continually, even in your homes; in this way, you will experience the happiness of speaking about God with your families. Pray for everyone, and also for me. I will pray for all of you, so that Mexico may be a place in which everyone can live in serenity and harmony. I bless all of you from my heart and I ask you to bring the affection and blessing of the Pope to your parents, brothers and sisters, and other loved ones. May the Virgin accompany you. Thank you very much, my dear young friends.

And as we never tired of chanting in Madrid for World Youth Day this past summer, proclaiming for all the secular world to hear, "Esta es, la juventud del papa!  Esta es, la juventud del papa!  Esta es, la juventud del papa!"  This is the Pope’s youth!  This is the Pope’s youth!  This is the Pope’s youth!

"Benedicto, hermano, ya eres mexicano"

New trailer for the up-coming movie about Mexico’s Cristero War, For Greater Glory (formerly called Cristiada)

Tomorrow, Pope Benedict XVI will be very close to us, for he leaves Rome this Friday for his Apostolic Visit to Mexico and Cuba. 

Here is the official anthem of his visit to Mexico (I wish we had a theme song for his visit to the U.S. almost 4 years ago).

Please offer a prayer—perhaps a Hail Mary or your Stations of the Cross this Friday—for our Holy Father, for his safety and protection, and that his visit to our continent may be spiritually fruitful.

Here is a Google translation of the lyrics:

When everything is gray and dark
when I find the course
and in my world there is only loneliness.

You appear in my life,
as a beacon to guide me,
all my interior lights.

You become the wind,
beneath my wings,
you’re a trail
of light and truth.

Messenger of Peace,
messenger of love,
you give hope to my heart,
this town is faithful,
we give back the faith,
we carry in the soul,
share your light.

With you there is no fear,
or sadness or mourning,
your eyes full of hope.

You’ll sow joy,
every life you touch,
love you take your pain.

You become the wind,
beneath my wings,
you’re a trail
of light and truth.

Messenger of Peace,
messenger of love,
you give hope to my heart,
this town is faithful,
we give back the faith,
we carry in the soul,
share your light.

Messenger of Peace,
messenger of faith,
Your word is water that calms my thirst,
a friend who is faithful,
we give back the faith,
we carry in the soul,
messenger of love.

We want your blessing,
inundate us with love,
for a better world.

No more violence,
no hatred or war, no,
only love.

Messenger of Peace,
messenger of love,
you give hope to my heart,
this town is faithful,
we give back the faith,
we carry in the soul,
share your light.

Messenger of Peace,
messenger of faith,
Your word is water that calms my thirst,
a friend who is faithful,
we give back the faith,
we carry in the soul,
messenger of love.

Messenger of love.

Thieves Steal 16 Consecrated Hosts
About a week ago, I told you about a very sad incident in Mexico where robbers entered a chapel of perpetual adoration and stole the monstrance and our Eucharistic Lord within it.
I don’t know what is going on in the world, but according to the Catholic News Agency, on March 7th, robbers entered the convent chapel of the Monastery of the Visitation of Holy Mary in the Diocese of Canelones, Uruguay, broke into the tabernacle, and stole the ciborium which contained 15 consecrated Hosts.
The thieves also took a monstrance also containing a Sacred Host, the sanctuary lamp, 3 crosses, and the choir organ.
On March 9th, the good sisters had a special Mass offered for their Bridegroom in those 16 stolen Hosts might be recovered. 
His Excellency, Bishop Alberto Sanguinetti urged all Catholics of Uruguay to offer “acts of love and reparation to Jesus in the Eucharist, whose love is scorned by those for whom He gave his life.”
Remember the response of the local Church in Mexico when the monstrance was stolen:  prayer, penance, and procession.
Let us join our brothers and sisters in Mexico and in Uruguay in making reparation for these terrible offenses and acts of robbery and sacrilege.  Particularly in this month of St. Joseph, implore our loving patron and father to guard his little Jesus in the 16 stolen Hosts as he protected Him and His Blessed Mother on earth.  Through the prayers and intercession of Joseph most strong, may these Sacred Hosts be recovered and that his Jesus may be loved, adored, worshiped, and glorified by all people, in all places, and in every generation.
(You know, St. Dismas, the Good Thief, might also be a good intercessor to obtain repentant hearts for these thieves.)
The irony is that these robbers broke into the tabernacle because they thought it held something valuable.  Oh, but it did!  It held our most precious Treasure:  nothing less than the Source of all love, goodness, truth, and beauty.
Since the thieves did not pay their King the respect and honor that He deserves, and even now our King may be desecrated and alone with no one to love and adore Him, let us give Him our hearts.  Let us give Him our love, our worship, our adoration in those 16 Hosts.
Therefore, please join me in offering 16 Glory Be’s as an act of adoration to our Eucharistic Lord, in reparation for the offenses He received, for the conversion of the thieves, and that the Hosts may be returned to the chapel.
As well as praying the following 3 times; it is the prayer that the angel taught the shepherd children of Fatima before Our Lady appeared to them:
My God, I believe, I adore, I hope, and I love You. I ask pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope, and do not  love You.

Thieves Steal 16 Consecrated Hosts

About a week ago, I told you about a very sad incident in Mexico where robbers entered a chapel of perpetual adoration and stole the monstrance and our Eucharistic Lord within it.

I don’t know what is going on in the world, but according to the Catholic News Agency, on March 7th, robbers entered the convent chapel of the Monastery of the Visitation of Holy Mary in the Diocese of Canelones, Uruguay, broke into the tabernacle, and stole the ciborium which contained 15 consecrated Hosts.

The thieves also took a monstrance also containing a Sacred Host, the sanctuary lamp, 3 crosses, and the choir organ.

On March 9th, the good sisters had a special Mass offered for their Bridegroom in those 16 stolen Hosts might be recovered. 

His Excellency, Bishop Alberto Sanguinetti urged all Catholics of Uruguay to offer “acts of love and reparation to Jesus in the Eucharist, whose love is scorned by those for whom He gave his life.”

Remember the response of the local Church in Mexico when the monstrance was stolen:  prayer, penance, and procession.

Let us join our brothers and sisters in Mexico and in Uruguay in making reparation for these terrible offenses and acts of robbery and sacrilege.  Particularly in this month of St. Joseph, implore our loving patron and father to guard his little Jesus in the 16 stolen Hosts as he protected Him and His Blessed Mother on earth.  Through the prayers and intercession of Joseph most strong, may these Sacred Hosts be recovered and that his Jesus may be loved, adored, worshiped, and glorified by all people, in all places, and in every generation.

(You know, St. Dismas, the Good Thief, might also be a good intercessor to obtain repentant hearts for these thieves.)

The irony is that these robbers broke into the tabernacle because they thought it held something valuable.  Oh, but it did!  It held our most precious Treasure:  nothing less than the Source of all love, goodness, truth, and beauty.

Since the thieves did not pay their King the respect and honor that He deserves, and even now our King may be desecrated and alone with no one to love and adore Him, let us give Him our hearts.  Let us give Him our love, our worship, our adoration in those 16 Hosts.

Therefore, please join me in offering 16 Glory Be’s as an act of adoration to our Eucharistic Lord, in reparation for the offenses He received, for the conversion of the thieves, and that the Hosts may be returned to the chapel.

As well as praying the following 3 times; it is the prayer that the angel taught the shepherd children of Fatima before Our Lady appeared to them:

My God, I believe, I adore, I hope, and I love You. I ask pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope, and do not  love You.

Robbers Steal Monstrance With Eucharist
From the Catholic News Agency (with my emphasis):

Two armed men entered a perpetual adoration chapel in in Mexico during the early morning hours on Feb. 29 and stole the monstrance containing the Eucharist.
“The kinds of acts undoubtedly manifest a lack of respect for God in his Church and a lack of values,” said the Diocese of Orizaba,  which located in the Mexican state of Veracruz.
According to the diocese, the men overpowered the five people who were in the chapel and locked them inside before making off with the monstrance.
“As the Church, such a cowardly act hurts and concerns us, but what mainly disturbs us is what they are going to do with the Holy Eucharist, which as we Catholics know is the real presence of our Lord Jesus Christ,” the diocese added.
Diocesan spokesman, Marcos Palacios, said that the local Church doesn’t want “the monstrance back, we want the Host. We ask those who took it to bring back, even anonymously if they want.”
In the wake the incident, the diocese decided to close the chapel temporarily “to express our sorrow and offer this reaction in penance for the acts that were committed.”
The diocese also invited Catholics to join in a march of reparation on March 2 through the streets of Orizaba to the Cathedral.  The Eucharist will be carried in procession after which Bishop Marcelino Hernandez Rodriguez will preside at Mass.
The diocese thanked local officials for their support and encouraged Catholics to pray “for the conversion of those who carried out this sacrilegious act. May God strengthen our Church in such a difficult trial.”

I couldn’t but help but feel that with all that’s been going in the United States regarding the government’s attack on the Church’s religious freedom, not to mention the ongoing assault by the world on our faith and values, this very sad incident in Mexico seems to exemplify the disregard (at best) and maliciousness (at worse) that our society has towards Christ and His Church.
Perhaps this profoundly sacrilegious and criminal act is a symptom of the current moral state of our world.  Yet, it also may be a foretaste of the persecutions to come.  In another case of sacrilege that hit closer to home, St. Anne’s Church in Union City, CA was vandalized, including spray painted satanic symbols and words.
Are these merely isolated incidents, or are they the beginning of something more sinister and brutal to come?
What I find quite hopeful and inspiring, however, is how the people of Orizaba have responded to this grave offense:  prayer, penance, and procession.
I think this is a great formula for Catholics in the United States as well.  We need to pray for all those who either out of ignorance or contempt oppose the Church and Her message of love, hope, and life.  At the same time, we need to pray for grace and constantly turn to the sacraments that we may grow in virtue and become better witnesses to the truth of the Gospel. 
In acknowledging our own sins, we must do penance for them and for all those who offend Our Lord.  For example, we can give up something (traditionally, it’s meat) on all Fridays, even those outside of Lent.  And on every first Friday, we can pray the Litany to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and make an Act of Reparation.
Lastly, we should revive the tradition of public processions that were at one time quite common in the Catholic culture of the United States.  Processions of the Blessed Sacrament or of a relic or a special image of Our Lady or another saint not only help to strengthen the faith of the community, but they also act as visible signs that God is present in the world, that He is real, that He is relevant.

Robbers Steal Monstrance With Eucharist

From the Catholic News Agency (with my emphasis):

Two armed men entered a perpetual adoration chapel in in Mexico during the early morning hours on Feb. 29 and stole the monstrance containing the Eucharist.

“The kinds of acts undoubtedly manifest a lack of respect for God in his Church and a lack of values,” said the Diocese of Orizaba,  which located in the Mexican state of Veracruz.

According to the diocese, the men overpowered the five people who were in the chapel and locked them inside before making off with the monstrance.

“As the Church, such a cowardly act hurts and concerns us, but what mainly disturbs us is what they are going to do with the Holy Eucharist, which as we Catholics know is the real presence of our Lord Jesus Christ,” the diocese added.

Diocesan spokesman, Marcos Palacios, said that the local Church doesn’t want “the monstrance back, we want the Host. We ask those who took it to bring back, even anonymously if they want.”

In the wake the incident, the diocese decided to close the chapel temporarily “to express our sorrow and offer this reaction in penance for the acts that were committed.

The diocese also invited Catholics to join in a march of reparation on March 2 through the streets of Orizaba to the Cathedral.  The Eucharist will be carried in procession after which Bishop Marcelino Hernandez Rodriguez will preside at Mass.

The diocese thanked local officials for their support and encouraged Catholics to pray “for the conversion of those who carried out this sacrilegious act. May God strengthen our Church in such a difficult trial.”

I couldn’t but help but feel that with all that’s been going in the United States regarding the government’s attack on the Church’s religious freedom, not to mention the ongoing assault by the world on our faith and values, this very sad incident in Mexico seems to exemplify the disregard (at best) and maliciousness (at worse) that our society has towards Christ and His Church.

Perhaps this profoundly sacrilegious and criminal act is a symptom of the current moral state of our world.  Yet, it also may be a foretaste of the persecutions to come.  In another case of sacrilege that hit closer to home, St. Anne’s Church in Union City, CA was vandalized, including spray painted satanic symbols and words.

Are these merely isolated incidents, or are they the beginning of something more sinister and brutal to come?

What I find quite hopeful and inspiring, however, is how the people of Orizaba have responded to this grave offense:  prayer, penance, and procession.

I think this is a great formula for Catholics in the United States as well.  We need to pray for all those who either out of ignorance or contempt oppose the Church and Her message of love, hope, and life.  At the same time, we need to pray for grace and constantly turn to the sacraments that we may grow in virtue and become better witnesses to the truth of the Gospel. 

In acknowledging our own sins, we must do penance for them and for all those who offend Our Lord.  For example, we can give up something (traditionally, it’s meat) on all Fridays, even those outside of Lent.  And on every first Friday, we can pray the Litany to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and make an Act of Reparation.

Lastly, we should revive the tradition of public processions that were at one time quite common in the Catholic culture of the United States.  Processions of the Blessed Sacrament or of a relic or a special image of Our Lady or another saint not only help to strengthen the faith of the community, but they also act as visible signs that God is present in the world, that He is real, that He is relevant.

est33:

During times of anti-religious sentiment:
Blessed Miguel Pro, Pray for us!

¡Viva Cristo Rey!

est33:

During times of anti-religious sentiment:

Blessed Miguel Pro, Pray for us!

¡Viva Cristo Rey!

After Rio, who will host the next World Youth Day?

Where will the next international World Youth Day gathering be held after Rio de Janeiro?  Before the Holy Father will officially announce the next host city next year at the closing Mass in Brazil, I imagine that (arch)dioceses from all around the world must first submit a bid, I’m guessing, to the Pontifical Council for the Laity

According to the video in the post above, it seems that the front runner is Kraków, Poland.  This choice would have particular significance since it could coincide with the 10th anniversary of Bl. John Paul the Great’s death.  And it would make a fitting occasion to canonize our beloved Papa, the founder of World Youth Day. 

Other potential hosts include London, England; Seoul, South Korea; India; Honduras; Latvia; and Peru.

I’ve also heard some rumors that Mexico City, may also submit a bid.  Also in potential running are Dublin, Ireland and Beirut.

I also get asked the likelihood of World Youth Day coming back to the United States.  I imagine that if we have a chance in the next decade or so, our strongest contenders are Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota and the Archdiocese of  Galveston-Houston in Texas.

Now, as a Bay Area native, it would be a dream (and a small miracle) if World Youth Day were ever held in the City of St. Francis.  First, you would probably need to get the city government on board (good luck with that), and also you would need to find a suitable space for the closing Mass (perhaps the Presidio?).

Anyway, wouldn’t it be cool if the next host city of World Youth Day was chosen as the next host of a Mardi Gras party is chosen?  Get a special King Cake and whoever receives the slice with the little baby figurine hosts World Youth Day.

Well…it was either that or get the (arch)bishops to play rock, paper, scissors. 

"He threw His body in front of His Mother, protecting her from the onslaught. He took all the punishment on Himself rather than have His Mother or this image…be destroyed."

Fr. Robert Barron shares his thoughts about his first visit to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Again, here is my poor translation; please feel free to suggest corrections below.

"GRACIAS VIRGENCITA"

Protect us, we ask you, little Virgin
And lead us from your hand along the way
You know what the deepest needs
Of each of your fervent pilgrims:
Your sweet and kind gaze that will light our path
That is your humble and miraculous image
The one that filled the entire world with hope

Thank you little brown Virgin
For relieving my pain because you filled my soul with devotion
Thank you, my beloved Lupita (*a nickname for GuadaLUPE)
In my humble song, I come to give you my heart

We have a vibrant faith in you little Mother
To heal our nation of its ills
That rain in the wounded land holy water
And peace and justice pours out in your fountains

Thank you little brown Virgin
For relieving my pain because you filled my soul with devotion
Thank you, my beloved Lupita
In my humble song, I come to give you my heart”
An interesting pop song for Our Lady, “Llegaste tu”.  Here is my poor translation of the lyrics (If anyone has a better translation, please post it below).

"Defeated in the rubble of yesterday
Between cruel hearts I found myself empty
Like a ship without a rudder roll-wing
As a child to steal even the illusion lost

Chorus:
And you came and everything changed
And there is no pain in me since I felt you
You arrived, your gifts from God
Days of sunshine and peace are what you give me

Moored in terrible loneliness
Waiting at the window for you to arrive
I felt all fear vanish
When I opened my eyes to see your love

There is no pain in my desire that you sense”

Starting las mananitas with a virtual pilgrimage to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe.