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Saturday, 18 May 2024

Events for Sunday 10th March 2024

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St Frances of Rome

Starts 02:00 Ends 01:59


Frances was born in Rome in 1384. Her parents, of high rank, overruled her desire to become a nun and, when she reached the age of twelve, married her to Lorenzo Ponziano, a Roman noble. During the forty years of their married life they never had a disagreement. While spending her days in retirement and prayer, Saint Frances attended promptly to every household duty, saying, 'A married woman must leave God at the altar to find Him in her domestic cares'. Her ordinary food was dry bread, and secretly she would exchange with beggars good food for their hard crusts.

Two of her children died young. During the invasion of Rome in 1413, Lorenzo was banished, his estates confiscated, his house destroyed, and his eldest son taken as a hostage. Frances saw in these losses only the hand of God, and blessed His holy Name. When peace was restored Ponziano recovered his estates.

After her husband's death, Saint Frances founded a Community of Benedictine Oblate nuns. She is one of 39 saints that founded religious congregations and whose statue is in St Peter's Basilica in Rome. At the age of forty-three, barefoot and with a cord about her neck, she asked admission to the community, and was soon elected Superior.

She lived at all times in the presence of God and, among many visions, was given constant sight of her Angel, who shed such a brightness around him that the Saint could read her midnight Office by this light alone. He shielded her in time of temptation, and directed her in every good act. But, when she fell into some fault, he faded from her sight, and whenever any unsuitable words were spoken before her, he covered his face in shame. Saint Frances died on the day she foretold, March 9th, 1440.


4th Sunday of Lent

Starts 02:00 Ends 11:05


Laetare Sunday

Laetare Sunday is the fourth, or middle, Sunday of Lent, so called from the first words of the Opening Prayer (Introit) at Mass, from Isaiah 66:10, from the Latin, "Laetare, Jerusalem" — Rejoice, O Jerusalem.  We are at a half-way stage in Lent and special signs of joy are permitted in the liturgy on this day, intended to encourage the faithful in their course through this season of penance.  Like Gaudete Sunday in Advent, rose-coloured vestments are allowed, instead of purple, and flowers are displayed on the altar. The contrast between Laetare and the other Sundays of Lent is thus emphasized, emblematic of the God-given joys of this life. 

Today's Gospel:

John 3: 14-21

God sent his Son into the world so that through him the world might be saved

Jesus said to Nicodemus:mosesserpent

‘The Son of Man must be lifted up
as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert,
so that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.
Yes, God loved the world so much
that he gave his only Son,
so that’everyone who believes in him may not be lost
but may have eternal life.
For God sent his Son into the world
not to condemn the world,
but so that through him the world might be saved.
No one who believes in him will be condemned;
but whoever refuses to believe is condemned already,
because he has refused to believe
in the name of God’s only Son.
On these grounds is sentence pronounced:
that though the light has come into the world
men have shown they prefer
darkness to the light
because their deeds were evil.
And indeed, everybody who does wrong
hates the light and avoids it,
for fear his actions should be exposed;
but the man who lives by the truth
comes out into the light, .
so that it may be plainly seen that what he does is done in God.