POPE CONFERS TITLE “DOCTOR UNITATIS” ON ST. IRENAEUS – MARY, SALUS POPULI ROMANI, IN “EXCELLENT” HEALTH AFTER A CHECK-UP

POPE CONFERS TITLE “DOCTOR UNITATIS” ON ST. IRENAEUS

The Vatican today issued Pope Francis’ Decree for the conferral of the title of Doctor of the Church on Saint Irenaeus of Lyons:

“Saint Irenaeus of Lyons, who came from the East, exercised his episcopal ministry in the West: he was a spiritual and theological bridge between Eastern Christians and westerners. His name, Irenaeus, expresses that peace that comes from the Lord and which reconciles, reintegrating into unity. For these reasons, after having received the opinion of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, with my Apostolic Authority I DECLARE him a Doctor of the Church with the title of Doctor unitatis. May the doctrine of such a great Master encourage more and more the path of all the Lord’s disciples towards full communion.”

MARY, SALUS POPULI ROMANI, IN “EXCELLENT” HEALTH AFTER A CHECK-UP

The papal basilica of St. Mary Major has announced that a conservation check has been carried out on the icon of Maria Salus Populi Romani. (vaticannews)

The routine work took place on Thursday morning, January 10, in the presence of the Archpriest of the Basilica, Cardinal Stanisław Ryłko.

Barbara Jatta, Director of the Vatican Museums, led the team of experts from the Painting Restoration Laboratory, who carried out the check-up.

Prayerful conservation

After a brief moment of prayer, the ancient Roman icon was temporarily removed from its place above the altar in the Pauline Chapel.

The team then brought it to the Basilica’s Chapter Hall, where they verified that the icon remains in excellent condition.

Those present then prayed the noon Angelus, and returned the icon to its place in the chapel built in the 1613 by Pope Paul V (Camillo Borghese).

Turning to Our Lady in times of trouble

Tradition attributes the icon of Maria Salus Populi Romani (salvation of the Roman peoples) to the hand of St. Luke. The Roman Pontifical says the image was brought to Rome by St. Helena, the mother of the Emperor Constantine.

Ever since Medieval times, the image of Our Lady has been particularly venerated by the inhabitants of Rome who turn to her especially in moments of danger or disaster.

Pope Francis had the icon brought to St. Peter’s Square at the height of the initial wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, when on March 27, 2020 he held a special Urbi et Orbi blessing.

He also pays the icon of Our Lady a visit before and after his Apostolic Journeys abroad.

The icon underwent extensive restoration work in 2017 and was returned to the Basilica with great pomp on the feast of the Translation of Salus Populi Romani January 28, 2018, in a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis.

 

JOAN’S ROME, POPE GREGORY AND WHAT POPE FRANCIS DID TODAY…

JOAN’S ROME, POPE GREGORY AND WHAT POPE FRANCIS DID TODAY…

On my March 9 blog, I wrote: “Days ago at dinner with three friends, we were talking about the need for a very special prayer service or liturgy because of the coronavirus situation. I told them the story of Pope Gregory I who, in 591, for the plague that struck Rome, organized a procession of faithful to pray for an end to the plague.

“I said, for those of us who are believers in Our Lord and in the power of prayer and in miracles, think how inspiring it would be if the Holy Father were to pray the rosary for an end to the coronavirus scourge before the image of his (and our) beloved icon Salus populi romani at St. Mary Major Basilica and have faithful throughout the world pray with him for a miracle!

“Corona, by the way, means crown in Italian and is also another word for rosary!

“This could be done via Vatican media, the Vatican’s YouTube page, Facebook Live and transmissions by the world’s television. Millions praying with Pope Francis!“ https://joansrome.wordpress.com/2020/03/09/pope-st-gregory-the-great-and-the-plague-of-rome/

And, as you saw, Francis did indeed pray before his beloved Mary today!

Photos – Vatican media:

 

POPE PRESIDES AT ECUMENICAL VESPERS SERVICE – POPE FRANCIS TO VISIT RESTORED MARIAN ICON SUNDAY

POPE PRESIDES AT ECUMENICAL VESPERS SERVICE
By Christopher Wells (Vatican Radio and news)

As is traditional, Pope Francis presided over an ecumenical Vespers service at the Basilica of Saint Paul’s Outside the Walls for the conclusion of the annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. The end of the Week coincides with the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul.

The Song of Moses and Miriam

During the liturgical service, a cantor proclaimed a reading from the Book of Exodus, the “Song of Moses and Miriam,” which Pope Francis took as the starting point for his homily. The hymn was sung by the Israelites after they had been saved from the Egyptians by God, an event that many of the Church Fathers saw as an image of Baptism. “All of us Christians,” the Pope said, have passed through the waters of Baptism; and the grace of the Sacrament has destroyed our enemies, sin and death.” Precisely for this reason, he continued, together we are able to sing God’s praise.

Called to community

But, the Pope said, as with Moses, “our individual experiences bind us to an even greater story, that of the salvation of the people of God.” Saint Paul, he said, whose conversion is celebrated in this liturgical feast, likewise had a “powerful experience of grace,” and this experience led him “to seek out communion with other Christians.” This, the Pope said, is also our experience as believers: “As soon as we grow in the spiritual life, we understand ever better that grace reaches us together with others, and is to be shared with others.”

The Pope explained that in recognizing the Baptisms of Christians of other traditions, we acknowledge that they too have received forgiveness, and that God’s grace is at work in them too. “And even when divergences separate us,” he said, “we recognize that we pertain to the same people of the redeemed, to the same family of brothers and sisters loved by the only Father.”

United in suffering

Our growth in the spiritual life, however, is often a difficult one, the Pope said, and pointed to the suffering of Christians endured for the Name of Jesus. The Holy Father argued that “when their blood is shed, even if they belong to different [Christian] Confessions, together they become witnesses of the faith, martyrs, united in the bond of baptismal grace.”

Even with other religious traditions, the Pope said, “Christians today confront the challenges that demean human dignity: flying from situations of conflict and misery they are victims of human trafficking and other forms of modern slavery; they suffer hardships and hunger, in a world that is ever more rich in means and poor in love, where inequality continues to grow.” But, he said, Christians are called to remember the history of what God has done for us, and to help and support one another, and “to face every challenge with courage and hope, armed only with Jesus and the sweet power of His Gospel.”

POPE FRANCIS TO VISIT RESTORED MARIAN ICON SUNDAY

On Sunday, January 28, 2018 at 9 am, Pope Francis will celebrate Mass in the Papal Basilica of St. Mary Major on the occasion of the feast of the Translation of the Salus Populi Romani icon that depicts the Madonna with the Child Jesus in her arms in a blessing position.

This solemnity, that takes place every year on the last Sunday of January, hopes to be a choral thanksgiving for the presence of the centuries-old sacred image in the Liberian Basilica, says a communiqué from the papal basilica.

Salus Populi Romani is among the most famous and venerated Marian icons and, as is well-expressed by its very name, is particularly venerated by Romans who, with trust invoke her protection in various moments of daily life and in especially critical moments.

After restoration –

Pope Francis is particularly devoted to her and, as happened immediately after his election to the papacy when he came to pay homage to her, he does so now on every one of his international trips.

The liturgical celebration will coincide with the exposition of the icon that has been restored following a delicate and challenging intervention done by the restoration laboratories of the Vatican museums and coordinated by Museum director, Dr. Barbara Jatta, with the supervision of a commission presided over by the archpriest of the Liberian Basilica, Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko.

The sophisticated technology of the research undertaken before the restoration and the extraordinary expertise of the Vatican restorers allowed for the recovery of the original beauty and the historical reality of this work that had been hidden by centuries of varnish, repainting and the effects from devotional use.

Thus, says the communiqué, the intimate conversation of souls is able to re-emerge without barriers in the intense look on the face of the Mother of God and our Mother.

POPE FRANCIS TO VISIT RESTORED MARIAN ICON SUNDAY

POPE FRANCIS TO VISIT RESTORED MARIAN ICON SUNDAY

On Sunday, January 28, 2018 at 9 am, Pope Francis will celebrate Mass in the Papal Basilica of St. Mary Major on the occasion of the feast of the Translation of the Salus Populi Romani icon that depicts the Madonna with the Child Jesus in her arms in a blessing position.

This solemnity, that takes place every year on the last Sunday of January, hopes to be a choral thanksgiving for the presence of the centuries-old sacred image in the Liberian Basilica, says a communiqué from the papal basilica.

Salus Populi Romani is among the most famous and venerated Marian icons and, as is well-expressed by its very name, is particularly venerated by Romans who, with trust invoke her protection in various moments of daily life and in especially critical moments.

Pope Francis is particularly devoted to her and, as happened immediately after his election to the papacy when he came to pay homage to her, he does so now on every one of his international trips.

The liturgical celebration will coincide with the exposition of the icon that has been restored following a delicate and challenging intervention done by the restoration laboratories of the Vatican museums and coordinated by Museum director, Dr. Barbara Jatta, with the supervision of a commission presided over by the archpriest of the Liberian Basilica, Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko.

The sophisticated technology of the research undertaken before the restoration and the extraordinary expertise of the Vatican restorers allowed for the recovery of the original beauty and the historical reality of this work that had been hidden by centuries of varnish, repainting and the effects from devotional use.

Thus, says the communiqué, the intimate conversation of souls is able to re-emerge without barriers in the intense look on the face of the Mother of God and our Mother.