Ash Wednesday and Lent
Ash Wednesday is one of the most important seasons in the liturgical calendar. It marks the beginning of Lent, a season of fasting, intensive prayer, and charity or works of mercy especially to the most desperate members of our society
Ash Wednesday comes from the ancient Jewish tradition of penance and fasting. The practice includes the wearing of ashes on the head. The ashes symbolize the dust from which God made us. As the priest applies the ashes to a person’s forehead, he speaks the words: “Remember that you are dust, and to dust, you shall return.” Alternatively, the priest may speak the words, “Repent and believe in the Gospel.” Ashes also symbolize grief, in this case, grief that we have sinned against God and mankind.
Writings from the Second-century Church refer to the wearing of ashes as a sign of penance. Priests administer ashes during Mass and all are invited to accept the ashes as a visible symbol of penance. Even non-Christians and the excommunicated are welcome to receive the ashes. The ashes are made from blessed palm branches, taken from the previous year’s Palm Sunday Mass.
It is important to remember that Ash Wednesday … Read More
FEBRUARY 11TH 2018
WORLD MARRIAGE DAY
MARRIAGE A NOBLE INSTITUTION!
Marriage is beautiful and is to be honored and celebrated hence Every second Sunday of February, World Marriage Day is celebrated around the world and couples are asked to renew the marriage vows as a way of renewing their unbreakable bond of love to each other. All the married couples celebrated their mutual and sacrificial love by renewing their marriage vows during the 11.30 am. mass which was celebrated by His Eminence John Cardinal Njue.
-Marriage is ordained by God; it is His institution. The first book of the Bible provides the details:
And the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him’ . . . And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man. And Adam said: ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of … Read More
Wednesday of the First Week of Lent
“Set out for the great city of Nineveh,
and announce to it the message that I will tell you.”
So Jonah made ready and went to Nineveh,
according to the LORD’s bidding.
Now Nineveh was an enormously large city;
it took three days to go through it.
Jonah began his journey through the city,
and had gone but a single day’s walk announcing,
“Forty days more and Nineveh shall be destroyed,”
when the people of Nineveh believed God;
they proclaimed a fast
and all of them, great and small, put on sackcloth.
When the news reached the king of Nineveh,
he rose from his throne, laid aside his robe,
covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in the ashes.
Then he had this proclaimed throughout Nineveh,
by decree of the king and his nobles:
“Neither man nor beast, neither cattle nor sheep,
shall taste anything;
they shall not eat, nor shall they drink water.
Man and beast shall be covered with sackcloth and call loudly to God;
every man shall turn from his evil way
We thank God for this far he has brought us. As we close the year 2017, midway the current PPC term, we look back and celebrate achievements recorded. Allow me to give you a snap of what the 2017 year has been like. Just like other years, we had the opportunity to represent you at Central Deanery level through the participation of the Executive committee: half day retreat at Resurrection Garden, leadership training with the Cardinal and charity work. We continue to give thanks to God for the support we have received from the Basilica Community. With your support we now have the newly anticipated Adoration Chapel functioning as planned in the year 2016, enjoying the meeting rooms based at the Cardinal Otunga Annex not to forget the new washrooms.
This year the focus was to support the Arch-Diocese activities. We are now ready to embark on a more ambitious project, the Basement parking which is anticipated will provide adequate slots and therefore allowing Christians access and the much-needed convenience. Progress with the Basilica and Kiriko twinning is so far commendable as this year our sister church embarked on the construction of a more spacious house for the clergy. During … Read More
By: Rev. Fr. Fredrick Chege
A story is told of a little girl who was very beautiful. Unfortunately, she was captured by a witch, who knew that if she wanted to hold on to the little girl, she had to convince her that she was ugly. If the girl walked in consciousness of her beauty she would elope with the many young men who came to consult the witch. If, however the girl remained convinced that she was ugly she would remain afraid of being seen by them and therefore hide whenever they came around. So, the witch convinced the young girl that she was horribly ugly. At the sight of any man she would therefore hide in shame. This way the witch kept her in her shackles. But one day as she was combing her hair in her room, she saw someone looking at her through the window. Instinctively she looked up. Her eyes locked with the eyes of the young man who was gazing at her. This was the turning point of her life. In the eyes of the young man the girl saw her own beauty. Gradually as she grew in consciousness of her beauty, her shame … Read More
The Peace and Grace of Christ be with you all! It is my undoubtful belief that all of us are reflecting on the Christmas; the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ as we prepare to respond positively towards the salvific event, and not just to react on it. I strongly encourage you at this stage of your life to step out of the circle of interpersonal relationships that have all along been sustaining your life. That is, conforming with others, doing things like others without taking personal engagement with God.
Take a point of reflecting upon the self as separate from the groups and the shared world that defines your life however difficult it may be. Using the words of one Philosopher, George Santayana ‘we for sure don’t know who discovered water, but we know it wasn’t fish’. My brothers and sisters let us not behave like fish who comfortably stays in water with no intuitive idea of what that water is. Spring out of the water and start to reflect upon the water. Figuratively speaking, water is the Church and the fish is our faith. Though we do everything as one family of God, personal encounter and responsibility … Read More
By: Rev. Fr. Peter Kamomoe
The word “Advent” has been derived from the Latin word adventus, which means “coming,”. It is a period of celebration and anticipation of the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ; a period of preparation to commemorate the dawn of our salvation through the Nativity of our Saviour. The first two Sundays during Advent (through December 16th) usually look forward to Christ’s second coming, and then the last two Sundays (December 17th – 24th) look backward to remember Christ’s first coming. The Catholic liturgical year begins at the beginning of Advent.
What we learn from the Advent Wreath
Evergreen leaves – symbolize life and freshness
Let us remain fresh with the grace of God
The prickly leaves – Remind us of the thorns of Christ-His deep love shown in the pain he suffered
The circle of the Wreath
It shows the infinity of God. No beginning and no end. Alpha and Omega. First and the last of everything we do.
what we learn from the advent candles
1st week of Advent
Prophecy candle or Candle of Hope-Purple colour
Lit on the first Sunday of Advent; Signifies virtues of … Read More
Central Deanery Family Day Celebrations 2017
The Central Deanery Inaugural Family Day was held on Saturday 25 November 2017 here at Holy Family Basilica and was officiated by His Eminence, John Cardinal Njue. Key among the activities that took place was the solemnization of marriages for forty couples from the twelve parishes of the Central Deanery and blessing of couples who were commemorating 50 years or more in Holy Matrimony. The celebration was attended by thousands of jubilant Christians from the Central Deanery. The twelve parishes represented were;
- Holy Family Basilica
- Peter’s Clavers
- Our Lady Queen of Peace-South B
- Francis Xavier-Parklands
- Shrine of Mary Help of Christians-Don Bosco
- Consolata Shrine
- Catherine of Alexandria-South C
- Catherine of Sienna
- Pauls University Chapel
- Holy Trinity Parish-Kileleshwa
- Austin’s Catholic Church
Click the link below to listen to the full homily from the main celebrant-His Eminence John Cardinal Njue
His Eminence John Cardinal Njue Homily
To praise and worship God
God is infinite, eternal, and all-powerful and His greatness and goodness ought to fill us with amazement and enthusiasm. We should always praise and worship Him before, during and after the Holy Mass. Praising and worshiping God unites us with Him. Always pay special attention to the Gloria and the Sanctus.
God is infinitely good with all the good things we have coming from Him: life, family, sanctifying grace, faith, the sacraments, and the gift of his Mother… And so many other natural and supernatural gifts. It is therefore good to give thanks. Unite yourself to our Lord in the Mass, giving thanks, and you will see how you also become more optimistic as a result, because … Read More
Adapted from; Messenger of Mary Immaculate magazine-September-October 2017 issue
October is traditionally known as the month of the Holy Rosary. This is the month when we beseech our Mother to bring us closer to Jesus through praying the Rosary more. This tradition has no clear origin. However, it is connected to the October 13th of the 1917 when the last of the monthly Marian apparitions took place in Fatima, Portugal. These apparitions for Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta had started in May 13th of the same year. Other sources connect October with the feast of our lady of the Rosary which falls on October 7th.
Initially, the feast was known as of that of our Lady of Victory. This was as a result of a Christian military victory in the battle of Lepanto of 1571. It is until 1573 that Pope Gregory XIII named it as Our Lady of the Rosary. Subsequently, the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary was celebrated as a feast of the universal Church for the first time in 1716. In the recent times, we have witnessed the feast of Saint John Paul II (October 22) who is a celebrated devotee … Read More