Last night in St Mary's church in Drogheda, there was a Mass of Thanksgiving for the beatification of Blessed John Paul II. It was a special evening for Drogheda, and for the Fraternity of St Genesius. My daughters were delighted to get their hands on some Blessed John Paul II medals, and little Teresa jumped up and down with excitement, as she joined the queue to venerate the relic of our newest blessed, Mary(5) was not as sure of herself, and hid behind me saying, "you go first". At the Mass the new blessed was declared a patron of the Fraternity of St Genesius. Below are a few words from Fr John Hogan's homily and some photos, I will post the entire text on www.stgenesius.com, before the day is out. Blessed John Paul II, pray for us.
“Do you love me?” Jesus asked Karol Wojtyla, and he said yes, not only with his voice, but with his life, his actions and his will. In this love we see the motivation of all Blessed John Paul did, who he was. Love of Jesus Christ transforms. The more we come to know Christ, the more we come to love him, and in loving him we seek to enter more deeply into his life, living that life with him: becoming truly “Christian”: of Christ, like Christ, another Christ. At the heart of this is, of course, dying to self, and this is something Blessed John Paul had to do, as indeed all followers of Jesus must do. And in that dying he found God and found himself.......
Blessed John Paul has a special significance for us in the Fraternity ..... In his call for a New Evangelisation, Pope John Paul included the arts, theatre and cinema as important areas for missionary activity. He did so conscious of the importance of the artistic vocation, one which is rooted in God’s creative activity. In his Letter to Artists, written in 1999, he lay an important foundation in reaching out to the men and women of the arts, one which Pope Benedict is building on. In this letter he wrote of the special vocation of the artist – a revolutionary idea which had often been denied by those who considered themselves more sensible. To be an artist, whatever the discipline one is in, is to have a vocation to art, a vocation to beauty, a vocation to explore who God is, who man is, and share insights with the rest of humanity in order to assist it come closer to God and to becoming fully human. This call to art, though, is not an amoral activity, while Pope John Paul distinguished forming one’s life as a masterpiece of grace from “actualizing” one’s productive activity, he was also at pains to show that there is a connection between the two, a connection which is vital if art is to be at the service of God and humanity. Art as the disclosure of one’s being allows us to gaze into the inner life of the artist, a real privilege; and how wonderful this can be when the artist is one whose life is virtuous, contemplative, constructive. Then the artist becomes an apostle. "
|St Mary's Church, Drogheda|
|Photo of Blessed John Paul in St Mary's|
|Floral arrangement of Pope John Paul II's crest|
|Fr John Hogan holds up the newly signed decree,|
making Blessed John Paul II a patron of the Fraternity of St Genesius
|The Gospel is proclaimed|
|A reliquary holding a piece of a cassock of Blessed John Paul II|
|A blessing with the relic of Blessed John Paul II|
|An altar boy being blessed with a relic of Blessed John Paul II|