November/ Mí na Samhna
The Month of the Holy Souls / Mí na Marbh
The theme for Catholic Schools Week 2022 is ‘Catholic Schools: Living Life to the Full’. As we look forward to and begin our preparations for celebrating CSW2022, it is important for each of us to remember those who have gone before us in the hope of the resurrection promised by Jesus.
Ahead of the celebration of CSW2022 a November Moment is offered to both Primary and Post Primary Schools. These resources aim to assist primary and post-primary schools with activities and lesson ideas for November – ‘The Month of the Holy Souls’, the month in which we remember the faithful departed.
More than most years, this November will be especially poignant as we remember all those who have died during the Covid-19 pandemic. In light of this, the Moment of November recalls to us God’s love for us, a love that conquers all things, even death. The November Moment also encourages us to examine the role that remembrance has played and continues to play for us as we journey through the Covid-19 pandemic.
- To download this year’s Resources for Primary and Post-Primary Schools click hereor
The Holy Father’s Intentions for the Month of November
People who suffer from depression
We pray that people who suffer from depression or burn-out will find support and a light that opens them up to life.
- There is an accompanying Group Reflection Sheet which can be downloaded here: http://popesprayerusa.net/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/PWPN-November-Group-Reflection-1.pdf .
- Each month also the Pope provides a message on the monthly theme which can be sourced here: http://popesprayerusa.net/category/pope-video/
November 1st marks the month of the Holy Souls with the Solemnity of All Saints. During the year, the Church celebrates one by one the feasts of the saints. Today she joins them all in one festival. The feast of All Saints should inspire us with tremendous hope when we recall to us Jesus’ promise that those who believe will never die but be born into new life in Christ. During this month we pray especially for our departed friends and loved ones on the last great journey towards the eternal light of God.
‘Have you not read what was said to you by God, “I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob?” He is God not of the dead, but of the living.’ (Matt 22:31-32)
Ní imithe uainn atá siad, ach imithe romhainn.
They are not gone from us but gone before us.
All Souls’ Day / Cuimhneachán na Marbh
All Souls’ Day commemorates the faithful departed. November is a time for remembering and praying for our loved ones who have gone before us and whose loss we feel. It is a time when we are particularly conscious of those in our parishes who are grieving and all those families who have lost loved ones in the past year. More than most years, this November will be especially poignant as we remember all those who have died during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Catholic Bishops of Ireland created a beautiful prayer resource for families to use at home which is still so relevant this year as many people were unable to attend funerals and remembrance service; “As families are not able to attend remembrance services in person this year, we offer this prayer resource for use at home. We would suggest that the prayer service be used for the first time on the evening of Monday 1 November, the eve of All Souls’ Day and then throughout the month of November as a way to remember our loved ones who are no longer with us”.
Catholic Schools and the Month of November. The theme for Catholic Schools Week 2021
‘Catholic Schools: Communities of Faith and Resilience’.
St. Malachy / Naomh Maolmhaodhóg
St. Malachy was Archbishop of Armagh and was the first Irish saint canonised by a Pope. St Malachy is the patron of the dioceses of Down & Connor. As well as being a committed monk, Malachy struggled heroically to wrest control of the Church from lay dynasties and give bishops effective authority in their dioceses in 12th century Ireland.
Let us ask for the intercession of St Malachy, that we may grow in the grace of God as our parish grows in the family of God.
- For more information on this Saint please click on the following link: https://www.catholicireland.net/saintoftheday/st-malachy-maol-maedhog-ua-morgair-1094-1148-patron-of-down-and-connor-diocese/
Memorial of St. Charles Borromeo, Bishop / N. Seárlas Borromeo, Easpag
St. Charles Borromeo (1538-1584) was a member of a noble family and a nephew of Pope Pius IV. He was made a Cardinal at the age of 23 and assisted the Pope in administering the affairs of the Holy See and in governing the Church. Soon thereafter he was made Archbishop of Milan. “Great was Charles’ love of neighbour and liberality toward the poor. When the plague raged in Milan, he sold his household furniture, even his bed, to aid the sick and needy, and thereafter slept upon bare boards. He visited those stricken by the disease, consoled them as a tender father, conferred upon them the sacraments with his own hands. A true mediator, he implored forgiveness day and night from the throne of grace”. He died on November 3, at the age of 46. He was beatified on May 12, 1602 by Pope Paul V and his feast day is celebrated on November 4th.
- You can find more information on this Saint here:
St. Martin de Porres / Naomh Máirtín de Porres
Today the Church celebrates the optional memorial of St. Martin de Porres, who lived a life of fasting, prayer, and penance as a Dominican lay brother. Martin was praised for his unconditional care of all people, regardless of race or wealth his life reflected his great love for God and all of God’s gifts. Martin fed, sheltered, and doctored hundreds of families his charity that made him the patron saint of social justice. St. Martin died on November 3rd, 1639 and is buried in the Convento Santo Domingo in Lima, Peru.
- For more information on this Saint please click on the following link:
- For a lovely gentle video by Catholic Online on St Martin De Porres please click on the following: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sowGAJQAyho&autoplay=1&list=PL58g24NgWPIzvBk2IQVES_xC4WTm6-CDI&ab_channel=CatholicOnline
All the Saints of Ireland / Lá Fhéile Naomh na hÉireann
The early Irish Martyrologies and the Stowe Missal give a firm basis to devotion to the Saints of Ireland. The feast celebrates the gifts and the glory of God in his saints, their sharing in the paschal mystery of Christ, our communion with them in Christ, their example and their intercession for us, the pilgrim Church, the sustaining power of the Eucharist, the hope of eternal life. Only four saints, St Malachy (1094-1148), St Lawrence O’Toole (1128-80) and St Oliver Plunkett (1625-81) and St Charles of Mount Argus (1821-93), have been officially canonised. All the other Irish saints, such as Ss Patrick, Brigid, and Colmcille, are saints, as it were, by acclamation of the local Church, before the official papal canonisation process was established.
- For more information on this Feast Day please click here: https://www.catholicireland.net/saintoftheday/all-the-saints-of-ireland/
St Laurence O’Toole / Lorcán Naofa Ó Tuathail
St Laurence O’Toole was born in Castledermot, Co. Kildare in 1128. He became Abbot of Glendalough in 1153 and Archbishop of Dublin in 1162. He died in Normandy on November 14th, 1180 and was canonised in 1225. His eventful life can be summarised under eight headings: Hostage, Monk, Archbishop, Contemplative, Mediator, Traveller, Legate and Saint.
A prayer to St. Laurence
St. Laurence O’Toole, man of peace, you were in the middle of family and political conflict from your earliest days. Give the gift of peace and hope to all who experience the trauma of division in families, in communities and among nations. St. Laurence O’Toole, man of faith, you had the openness to accept a position of leadership in your community at an early age. Bless our young people with a spirit of generosity to offer themselves in the service of the Gospel. Amen.
- For further information on this Saint including a PowerPoint Presentation, Worksheets and Prayers, click here:
- Additional information can be found here: https://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=365
World Diabetes Day / Lá Domhanda Diabaetas
Globally, an estimated 422 million adults were living with diabetes in 2014, compared to 108 million in 1980. The global prevalence of diabetes has nearly doubled since 1980, rising from 4.7% to 8.5% in the adult population. This reflects an increase in associated risk factors such as being overweight or obese. Over the past decade, diabetes prevalence has risen faster in low and middle-income countries than in high-income countries. The following resources are available on the following link: https://www.un.org/en/observances/diabetes-day or can be accessed individually by clicking on the following highlighted links:
- WHO Diabetes Programme
- Diabetes fact sheet
- Diabetes country profiles 2016
- Q&A: What are the risks of diabetes in children?
- Quiz: How much do you know about diabetes?
- Sustainable Development Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims /
Lá Cuimhneacháin Domhanda ar Íobhartaigh Timpistí Bóithre
The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims (WDR) is commemorated on the third Sunday of November each year.
Remember. Support. Act.
The objectives of the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims are to provide a platform for road traffic victims and their families to:
- remember all people killed and seriously injured on the roads;
- acknowledge the crucial work of the emergency services;
- draw attention to the generally trivial legal response to culpable road deaths and injuries
- advocate for better support for road traffic victims and victim families;
- promote evidence-based actions to prevent and eventually stop further road traffic deaths and injuries.
The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims 2021 puts the spotlight on the reduction of traffic speeds – Low speeds, which have the potential to prevent many deaths and serious injuries, in particular those of pedestrians and all other vulnerable road users – children, elderly and the disabled.
- To find out more information on this topic and resources click here: https://www.un.org/en/observances/road-traffic-victims-day
- Also there is a short film (about 6 mins long), produced for the 2nd Global High-Level Conference on Road Safety held in Brazil in November 2015, highlights the tragic consequences of the lack of safety on the world’s roads and the urgent measures needed to address this health and development crisis.
It might be worth watching first before showing to your class.
Universal Children’s Day / Lá Uilíoch na Leanbh
World Children’s Day was first established in 1954 as Universal Children’s Day and is celebrated on 20 November each year to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children’s welfare.
“Around the world, children are showing us their strength and leadership advocating for a more sustainable world for all. Let us build on advances and re-commit to putting children first. For every child, every right”. UN Secretary-General António Guterres
WHY UNIVERSAL CHILDREN’S DAY IS IMPORTANT
- Guarantees rights to children
In typical government documents, the rights given to people are generally understood to be for adults. However, thanks to the UN, governments around the world have adopted treaties that guarantee children the right to life, health, education, play, family, protection from violence, discrimination, and suppression.
- They are the future
Changes take time. And by time, we mean generations. If we want to ensure a stable, safe, sustainable future for our planet, it starts with the children of today. That’s why early education is imperative, and the UN is leading the charge here.
- Raises awareness
It may be easy to overlook the problems facing children today if they aren’t apparent in your daily life. Universal Children’s Day seeks to spread the knowledge that there are millions of children around the world who don’t have access to education, healthcare, or opportunities
The Presentation of Mary / Toirbhirt na Maighdine Muire
The Feast of the Presentation of Mary is celebrated in both the Eastern and Western Churches. It recalls the day in the life of the Jewish girl named Mary (Maryam) when her parents, Joachim and Anne, presented her to the Lord in the temple and dedicated her life to Him. Mary had already been chosen by God, preserved by a singular grace as a chosen vessel through whom the Incarnate Word would be given for the salvation of the whole world.
Today’s Feast emphasises our response to God’s gifts. We remember the response of Mary’s mother and father in their decision to present her in the temple for dedication to the Lord. All parents are called to imitate their response by presenting their children for Baptism.
- For further information click here: https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2020-11-21
- For additional information click here: https://www.catholic.org/news/hf/faith/story.php?id=43754
The Presentation Sisters and Friends of Nano Nagle, all over the world, celebrate the Feast of the Presentation of Mary in the Temple on the 21st November each year. The Presentation Sisters were founded by Nano Nagle in Cork, Ireland in 1775. Nano was a woman of great courage who established secret schools (hedge schools) for Catholic children barred from education by oppressive British law. She taught long days, and at night she carried her lantern among Cork’s attics and alleyways, bringing comfort and hope to the city’s poor, sick, and elderly.
- For further information on Nano Nagle click here: https://www.presentationsisters.org/who-we-are/nano-nagle/
Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe /Sollúntas Chríost Rí na nUile
The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, formerly referred to as “Christ the King,” was established by Pope Pius XI in 1925 as an antidote to secularism, a way of life which leaves God out of man’s thinking and living and organises his life as if God did not exist. The feast is intended to proclaim in a striking and effective manner Christ’s royalty over individuals, families, society, governments, and nations.
This is a tremendous feast with which to end the liturgical year because it turns upside down all the pre-conceived ideas we have about hierarchy, kingship and what it means to be in authority. Jesus’ power comes from God and it is a power that builds people up rather than diminishes them. He does not deny that he is a king, but it is not the word he would use. The only thing that matters to him is the truth and that truth is God.
- For further information click here: http://education.dublindiocese.ie/feast-of-christ-the-king/
- More information can be found here: https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2020-11-22
International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women / Lá Idirnáisiúnta in aghaidh Foiréigin ar Mhná
“Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect!”
The UN System’s 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence activities, from 25 November to 10 December, will take place under our 2020 global theme: “Orange the World: Fund, Respond, Prevent, Collect!”
As the world retreated inside homes due to the lockdown measures introduced to curb the COVID-19 pandemic, reports showed an alarming increase in the already existing pandemic of violence against women. “Accompanying the crisis has been a spike in domestic violence reporting, at exactly the time that services, including rule of law, health and shelters, are being diverted to address the pandemic,” stated the UN Secretary-General’s report, “Shared Responsibility, Global Solidarity: Responding to the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19“.
You can make a difference during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and protracted state of crisis it has generated across the world. You can support women and girl survivors of violence to stay safe and free of violence. Take action during this year’s 16 Days of Activism to End Gender-Based Violence.
Feast of the Miraculous Medal / Féile an Bhoinn Míorúilteach
Today marks the Feast of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. On this day, we commemorate the apparition of Our Blessed Mother to Saint Catherine Laboure (whose feast day is tomorrow, 28 November) and celebrate the vision Our Lady revealed to the young saint- the Miraculous Medal.
It was in Paris, in the year 1830, part of a period when the Catholic Church was under attack from its many enemies, when “times are evil in France and in the world,” as Our Lady said. While doing silent meditation, Saint Catherine had a striking vision of the Blessed Virgin, her beauty indescribable, standing on a globe. Rays of light shone forth from the precious gems on the Blessed Mother’s hands symbolizing the graces that she bestows upon us. Catherine saw an oval frame formed around her, bearing the words “O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to Thee.” A voice then said to Catherine, “Have a medal struck after this model. Persons who wear it will receive great graces, especially if they wear it around the neck.”
On the front, the medal shows Our Mother Mary standing on the globe (Mary, assumed into heaven, is the Queen of Heaven and Earth), as her feet stand on the head of the serpent (Mary is our protection). The oval-shaped medal is circled with the signature, “O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.” At the back of the medal, twelve stars (12 Apostles who formed the first Church) surround a large “M” from which a cross (Jesus’ Cross and Redemption) arises. And below the “M” there are two flaming hearts (the burning love of Jesus and Mary for us). The left hearts are circled with thorns, which represents Jesus (the Sacred Heart who died for our sins). The right heart, pierced by a sword (her sorrows), symbolizes Mary (the Immaculate Heart who intercedes for us).
- For further information please check the following: https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2020-11-27
St. Catherine Laboure / Naomh Caitríona Laboure
Traditionally today is the feast of St. Catherine Laboure who is associated with the miraculous medal devotion. For forty-five years from the time of her visions in 1831 until her death in 1876 she led an outwardly uneventful life as a Daughter of Charity in Paris. The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her, a member of the Daughters of Charity, three times in 1830 and commissioned her to have made the Miraculous Medal and to spread devotion to it. She was canonized in 1947. The Daughters’ Motherhouse in Paris marks the location of St. Catherine Labouré’s apparitions of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal.
- For further information click here: https://daughters-of-charity.com/history/
First Sunday of Advent / An Chéad Domhnach den Aidbhint
The new Liturgical Year commences with the first Sunday of Advent. In this new liturgical year, the Church not only wishes to indicate the beginning of a period, but the beginning of a renewed commitment to the faith by all those who follow Christ, the Lord. This time of prayer and path of penance that is so powerful, rich, and intense, it endeavours to give us a renewed impetus to truly welcome the message of the One who was incarnated for us. The Season of Advent is therefore a season of vigilant waiting, that prepares us to welcome the mystery of the Word Incarnate. As Blessed John Henry Newman reminded us in a homily for the Advent Season: “Advent is a time of waiting, it is a time of joy because the coming of Christ is not only a gift of grace and salvation, but it is also a time of commitment because it motivates us to live the present as a time of responsibility and vigilance”. The entire Liturgy of the Advent season, will spur us to an awakening in our Christian life and will put us in a ‘vigilant’ disposition, to wait for Our Lord Jesus who is coming:
‘Awaken! Remember that God comes! Not yesterday, not tomorrow, but today, now! The one true God, “the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob”, is not a God who is there in Heaven, unconcerned with us and our history, but he is the-God-who-comes.’
Do not lose heart – a message in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic from the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference
Day of Remembrance for all Victims of Chemical Warfare / Cuimhneachán orthu siúd a cailleadh de bharr Cogaí Ceimiceacha
This commemoration provides an opportunity to pay tribute to the victims of chemical warfare, as well as to reaffirm the commitment of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to the elimination of the threat of chemical weapons, thereby promoting the goals of peace, security, and multilateralism.
St. Andrew the Apostle / Féile Naomh Aindriú, Aspal
Andrew, Peter’s brother, and John were the first disciples to follow the Lord. With tender delicacy the Gospel (John 1:35-42) describes their first meeting with Jesus. Andrew did not belong to the inner circle of the apostles, Peter, James and John, and the evangelists narrate nothing extraordinary about him (John 6:8); but tradition extols his great love of the Cross-and of the Saviour. The film series entitled The Chosen is a free series that provides a glimpse into the relationship of those who knew Jesus. The film series is free and can be accessed using this link: https://studios.vidangel.com/the-chosen/
For further information please click here: https://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2020-11-30