Tag Archives: Pope Benedict XVI

Former Benedict XVI Student: All [Irish] Bishops Appointed Before 2003 Should Step Down

This suggestion by Father Vincent Twomey of Ireland comes in response to an investigative report on the sex abuse scandal in County Cloyne. Fr. Twomey is joined in similar sentiment by the Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of the Archdiocese of Dublin who recently expressed his disappointment in his fellow Church leaders:

What do you do when you’ve got systems in place and somebody ignores them? — I find myself asking today, can I be proud of the Church that I’m a leader of? I have to be ashamed of this…

The Archbishop also suggested that despite the Vatican’s encouragement and desire to discover, report and prevent these abuses there were still many within Ireland and the Vatican itself that did and continue to do much to undermine the situation.

Advertisements

Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

“I promise you in the excessive mercy of my Heart that my all-powerful love will grant to all those who receive Holy Communion on the First Fridays in nine consecutive months the grace of final perseverance; they shall not die in my disgrace, nor without receiving their sacraments. My divine Heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment”

— Jesus to St. Margaret Mary

Some Background On Devotion to the Sacred Heart

Sixteenth century Calvinism and seventeenth century Jansenism preached a distorted Christianity that substituted for God’s love and sacrifice of His Son for all men the fearful idea that a whole section of humanity was inexorably damned.

The Church always countered this view with the infinite love of our Savior who died on the cross for all men. The institution of the feast of the Sacred Heart was soon to contribute to the creation among the faithful of a powerful current of devotion which since then has grown steadily stronger. The first Office and Mass of the Sacred Heart were composed by St. John Eudes, but the institution of the feast was a result of the appearances of our Lord to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in 1675. The celebration of the feast was extended to the general calendar of the Church by Pius IX in 1856.

via Catholic Culture | Litugical Year


Read the Bible at Mass

First Reading: Dt 7:6-11

Moses said to the people:

“You are a people sacred to the LORD, your God; he has chosen you from all the nations on the face of the earth to be a people peculiarly his own. It was not because you are the largest of all nations that the LORD set his heart on you and chose you, for you are really the smallest of all nations. It was because the LORD loved you and because of his fidelity to the oath he had sworn your fathers, that he brought you out with his strong hand from the place of slavery, and ransomed you from the hand of Pharaoh, king of Egypt. Understand, then, that the LORD, your God, is God indeed, the faithful God who keeps his merciful covenant down to the thousandth generation toward those who love him and keep his commandments, but who repays with destruction a person who hates him; he does not dally with such a one, but makes them personally pay for it. You shall therefore carefully observe the commandments, the statutes and the decrees that I enjoin on you today.”

Responsorial Psalm103:1-2, 3-4, 6-7, 8, 10

R. (cf. 17) The Lord’s kindness is everlasting to those who fear him.

Bless the LORD, O my soul;
all my being, bless his holy name.
Bless the LORD, O my soul;
and forget not all his benefits.

R. The Lord’s kindness is everlasting to those who fear him.

He pardons all your iniquities,
heals all your ills.
He redeems your life from destruction,
crowns you with kindness and compassion.

R. The Lord’s kindness is everlasting to those who fear him.

Merciful and gracious is the LORD,
slow to anger and abounding in kindness.
Not according to our sins does he deal with us,
nor does he requite us according to our crimes.

R. The Lord’s kindness is everlasting to those who fear him.

Second Reading: 1 Jn 4:7-16

Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God. Whoever is without love does not know God, for God is love. In this way the love of God was revealed to us: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might have life through him. In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also must love one another. No one has ever seen God. Yet, if we love one another, God remains in us, and his love is brought to perfection in us.

This is how we know that we remain in him and he in us, that he has given us of his Spirit. Moreover, we have seen and testify that the Father sent his Son as savior of the world. Whoever acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God remains in him and he in God. We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us.

God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him.

Gospel Reading: Mt 11:25-30

At that time Jesus exclaimed:

“I give praise to you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to little ones. Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.

“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”


Close to the Heart of the Son is the Heart of the Mother 

The Church, in this month of June, giving us the solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, wishes us to understand the consequential devotion to Our Lady traditionally lived in the Marian month par excellence: the month of May. The Heart of Jesus is the See and Throne of Divine Mercy, revealed to the world in the passion, death and resurrection of Christ.

The Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI speaking of the solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus two years ago said: “In biblical language, ‘heart’ indicates the centre of the person where his sentiments and intentions dwell. In the Heart of the Redeemer we adore God’s love for humanity, his will for universal salvation, his infinite mercy. Practising devotion to the Sacred Heart of Christ therefore means adoring that Heart which, after having loved us to the end, was pierced by a spear and from high on the Cross poured out blood and water, an inexhaustible source of new life” (Benedict XVI, Angelus 5 June 2005).

The call which comes from this important feast day is first of all a call to Eucharistic adoration, because in the Sacred Host the Lord Jesus is truly present and He offers each of us His Heart, His Merciful Love. To spend time in the Presence of the Eucharistic Lord, to adore Him, is the best expression of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus which, as we know, spread all over the world thanks to Jesus’ revelations to Saint Margherita M. Alacoque in the 17th century: “Behold the Heart which so loved mankind!”

As a prolongation and accomplishment of this message, the Lord appeared to another Sister in the 20th century revealing the abyss of His unfathomable mercy; she was Saint Faustina Kowalska who wrote in her Diary, now world famous, these words of Jesus: “I have opened my Heart as a living source of Mercy, from it all souls draw life, all approach with deep confidence this sea of Mercy. Sinners will obtain justification and the just will be strengthened in goodness. I will fill the souls of those who put their trust in My Mercy with My divine peace at the hour of their death. My daughter, continue to spread devotion to My Mercy, in doing so you will refresh My Heart which burns with the fire of compassion for sinners. Tell my priests that hardened sinners will be softened by their words if they speak of my boundless Mercy and of the compassion which My Heart feels for them. I will give priests who proclaim and exalt My Mercy wondrous power, unction to their words and I will move all the hearts to which they speak” (Book 5, 21 January 1938).

The deepest longing of Christ’s Heart is that we discover how much he loves us, the extent of his tender love for creatures who, cooled by their selfishness, look only inwards at themselves, as if they were afraid to let themselves be loved unconditionally by their Creator, who asks nothing and gives all!

How society, culture, economy, politics today need this Heart! It is really true, the more man distances himself from God-Love the more he becomes ‘heartless’, agitated about a thousand things because he has mislaid the principal one: to let oneself be loved by Christ and to respond to this Love with our love.

Many times during history the Supreme Pontiffs have reminded humanity that without the Lord Jesus life has no real meaning, man gropes in the dark to find himself! The Servant of God John Paul II introduced the Church into the Third Millennium with a mandate to become “Apostles of Divine Mercy.” The Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI picked up where his Predecessor left off and never tires to remind us of the necessity to rediscover the merciful Heart, this infinite Love of God, who reveals Himself in our lives if we open to Him. “Open, open wide the doors to Christ” the voice of the Holy Spirit continues to say. By means of Eucharistic adoration we are “opened” from within by His invisible working in us. The Most Holy Eucharist, celebrated and adored, as the Church teaches us, is the greatest and most effective treasure of our salvation, an infinite treasure which must be safeguarded with profound respect and deepest devotion.

Close to the Heart of the Son is the Heart of the Mother whom the Church celebrates the day after the solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Let it again be the Holy Father who illuminates us with regard to this mystery: “The heart that resembles that of Christ more than any other is without a doubt the Heart of Mary, his Immaculate Mother, and for this very reason the liturgy holds them up together for our veneration. Responding to the Virgin’s invitation at Fatima, let us entrust the whole world to her Immaculate Heart, which we contemplated yesterday in a special way, so that it may experience the merciful love of God and know true peace” (Benedict XVI, Angelus 5 June 2005).

— Rev. Luciano Alimandi, Agenzia Fides 13/6/2007

Things to Do:

Enhanced by Zemanta

Denver: 60 Hours of Adoration for 60 Years of Priesthood

Pope Benedictus XVI

And in the wake of the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Our Blessed Lord:

Denver, Colo., Jun 26, 2011 / 01:09 pm (CNA).– Joseph Aloysius Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, was ordained a priest June 29, 1951, in his native Germany. This year marks the 60th anniversary of his priestly ordination.

To honor the pontiff and this milestone, the Vatican Congregation for Clergy is encouraging Catholics worldwide to participate in 60 hours of eucharistic adoration to pray for the sanctification of the clergy and the gift of new priestly vocations.

“To have a spiritual observance of the Holy Father’s anniversary is significant; 60 years of priestly ordination is an important milestone,” said Deacon Charles Parker, director of liturgy for the Denver Archdiocese. “For the Holy Father to then turn that anniversary into something greater for the universal Church shows his ultimate care as the supreme shepherd of the Church for the flock entrusted to him.”

To mark the event in the Archdiocese of Denver, 60 hours of eucharistic adoration will be hosted over five days: June 27 (feast of Sts. Peter and Paul) through July 1, from 6 a.m.-6 p.m.; with the exception of June 29, when hours will be 9 a.m.-9 p.m. to accommodate family and work schedules.

The devotion will be held in the historic Christ the King Chapel at the St. John Vianney Theological Seminary on the campus of the John Paul II Center at 1300 S. Steele St. in Denver.

“It seemed fitting that we pray before the Blessed Sacrament for the gift of new vocations at one of the seminary chapels where the men are formed,” said Deacon Parker, adding that it is a rare opportunity for the public to visit the chapel.

“The seminary chapel isn’t always accessible to the public,” he said. “It’s a beautiful place to pray; and to take advantage of coming to the seminary to pray in an exquisite chapel for this cause is an opportunity that doesn’t happen very often.”

Following 6 p.m. Benediction on Monday, June 27 and Friday, July 1, Deacon Samuel Morehead, a seminarian at St. John Vianney, will provide 30-minute tours of the chapel.

The 8,000-square-foot chapel was dedicated July 17, 1931, in a ceremony presided by Bishop Urban J. Vehr, installed as bishop of Denver the preceding day. In 1989 it was added to the National Register of Historic Places by the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Chapel architect Jules Benoit Benedict, who also designed Denver’s Holy Ghost Church and the boathouse at Washington Park, regarded the seminary chapel as “his masterpiece.”

The architectural style of the classical Roman basilica is described as Lombard, conforming to the Romanesque style in Lombardy in northern Italy. The chapel is known for its brick tapestry walls and German stained glass windows, including 14 windows in the nave that reflect teachings about the priesthood.

The daily devotions will open at 6 a.m. with solemn exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and devotional hymns; at 10 a.m. recitation of the rosary; at 2 p.m. eucharistic reading; and close at 6 p.m. with solemn reposition and Benediction.

The exception is Wednesday, June 29, when the schedule will be as follows: 9 a.m. exposition and hymns, 2 p.m. rosary, 6 p.m. eucharistic reading and 9 p.m. reposition and Benediction.

“We hope that people come throughout the five days,” Deacon Parker said. “It’s a significant event in the life of the Church and a moment of profound grace for all of us to come together and to pray—when we don’t have priests, we don’t have all the sacraments.”

The concluding day, July 1, is the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and World Day of Prayer for Priests. For the occasion, the U.S. bishops designed a prayer card that can be downloaded at www.foryourvocation.org. Copies of the prayer card will be available at Christ the King Chapel during the devotion week.

Printed with permission from the Denver Catholic Register, newspaper for the Archdiocese of Denver, Colo.

via Catholic News Service

How about we all jump in on this bandwagon and do 60 minutes? Oh wait…that’s called a Holy Hour [of Power]. And this is often the norm for Adoration but too many today make excuses.

All of the excuses we, including me, come up with not to spend time with Our Creator reminds me of Jesus at the Garden, “And he came and found them sleeping, and he said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Could you not watch one hour? Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”  (Mark 14:37-38)

If you are in Denver (or any place else for that matter) join in. If you can wait in line for hours and even days for a stinking iPad, iPod, Wii, Star Wars, concert, etc. we can certainly spend an hour outside of Mass with Jesus for the benefit of His priests and Steward.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Pope Prescribes the Eucharist as the "Antidote" to Modern Ills

MonstranceYou know what? So do I. There is nothing like a Real, Personal encounter and relationship with Jesus Christ, of which Eucharistic Adoration is second only to receiving Him at Communion.

Vatican City, Jun 26, 2011 / 02:05 pm (CNA/EWTN News).– The Eucharist is the medicine which can heal our individualist society, Pope Benedict XVIsaid in his midday Angelus address on Corpus Christi Sunday.

“In an increasingly individualistic culture in which Western societies are immersed – and which is tending to spread throughout the world – the Eucharist is a kind of ‘antidote’ which operates in the minds and hearts of believers and is continually sowing in them the logic of communion, of service, of sharing – in other words, the logic of the Gospel,” said Pope Benedict to pilgrims in St. Peters Square on June 26.

Catholics believe that the bread and wine offered by Christ at the Last Supper literally became his body and blood – and that this same miracle is repeated by priests at every Mass since.Hence the name of today’s festivity – ‘Corpus Christi’ Sunday or ‘Body of Christ’ Sunday. 

“From the Eucharist,” observed the Pope, “the Risen Christ is truly present among his disciples and working with the power of the Holy Spirit. And in the following generations through the centuries, the Church, despite the limitations and human errors, has continued to be a force for communion throughout the world.”

The Catechism of the Catholic Church describes the Eucharist as the “source and summit” of Christian life. As the Pope bluntly put it today, “without the Eucharist, the Church simply does not exist.”

The Pope noted this belief in the centrality of the Eucharist has manifested itself throughout the history of the Church, beginning with the earliest Christian communities in Jerusalem who shared all possessions in common.

“From what came all this? From the Eucharist that is the Risen Christ, truly present among his disciples and working with the power of the Holy Spirit.”

He then drew upon the example of the fourth century Abitene martyrs from North Africa who chose to die rather than deprive themselves of Sunday Mass in the face of Roman persecution. They proclaimed “Sine Dominico non possumus’ – without the ‘Dominicum’ – without the Sunday Eucharist, we cannot live.” 

Pope Benedict concluded by urging all pilgrims to turn to the VirginMary, the mother of Jesus, who was described by Pope John Paul II as the “Woman of the Eucharist.”
 
“At her school, our lives become fully ‘Eucharistic’, open to God and others, capable of transforming evil into good with the power of love, striving to promote unity, fellowship, brotherhood.”

via Catholic News Agency

It seems as no mystery to me that the Church’s calendar celebrates the Body and Blood this past Sunday and then today, Monday, we have the option of celebrating the memorial of St. Cyril of Alexandria and in the old calendar (1962 Roman Missal) we celebrate Our Lady of Perpetual Help whose image is of the Blessed Virgin holding the infant Jesus.

All of this ties in to the fact that there is nothing more important than Christ. Nothing more important than knowing that He is present in the Blessed Sacrament. And that there is no creature better apt at helping us to see, believe and understand this than His Own Mother.

She lived Who we receive in Communion. Her relatives were filled with the Holy Spirit upon hearing her voice while she carried the Lord in the tabernacle that was her womb. She adored Him humbled on the Cross, the Lamb of God, for our sins.

Get to Adoration today! Find out more about Adoration and where by visiting The Real Presence Eucharistic Education and Adoration Association.


The Anima Christi

Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from Christ’s side, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
O good Jesus, hear me
Within Thy wounds hide me
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee
From the malicious enemy defend me
In the hour of my death call me
And bid me come unto Thee
That I may praise Thee with Thy saints
and with Thy angels
Forever and ever
Amen.


“I love You, O my God, and my only desire is to love You until the last breath of my life. I love You, O my infinitely lovable God, and I would rather die loving You, than live without loving You. I love You, Lord and the only grace I ask is to love You eternally….My God, if my tongue cannot say in every moment that I love You, I want my heart to repeat it to You as often as I draw breath.”

– Saint John Vianney.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Pope Prescribes Eucharist as "Antidote" to Modern Ills

MonstranceYou know what? So do I. There is nothing like a Real, Personal encounter and relationship with Jesus Christ, of which Eucharistic Adoration is second only to receiving Him at Communion.

Vatican City, Jun 26, 2011 / 02:05 pm (CNA/EWTN News).The Eucharist is the medicine which can heal our individualist society, Pope Benedict XVI said in his midday Angelus address on Corpus Christi Sunday.

“In an increasingly individualistic culture in which Western societies are immersed – and which is tending to spread throughout the world – the Eucharist is a kind of ‘antidote’ which operates in the minds and hearts of believers and is continually sowing in them the logic of communion, of service, of sharing – in other words, the logic of the Gospel,” said Pope Benedict to pilgrims in St. Peters Square on June 26.

Catholics believe that the bread and wine offered by Christ at the Last Supper literally became his body and blood – and that this same miracle is repeated by priests at every Mass since. Hence the name of today’s festivity – ‘Corpus Christi’ Sunday or ‘Body of Christ’ Sunday. 

“From the Eucharist,” observed the Pope, “the Risen Christ is truly present among his disciples and working with the power of the Holy Spirit. And in the following generations through the centuries, the Church, despite the limitations and human errors, has continued to be a force for communion throughout the world.”

The Catechism of the Catholic Church describes the Eucharist as the “source and summit” of Christian life. As the Pope bluntly put it today, “without the Eucharist, the Church simply does not exist.”

The Pope noted this belief in the centrality of the Eucharist has manifested itself throughout the history of the Church, beginning with the earliest Christian communities in Jerusalem who shared all possessions in common.

“From what came all this? From the Eucharist that is the Risen Christ, truly present among his disciples and working with the power of the Holy Spirit.”

He then drew upon the example of the fourth century Abitene martyrs from North Africa who chose to die rather than deprive themselves of Sunday Mass in the face of Roman persecution. They proclaimed “Sine Dominico non possumus’ – without the ‘Dominicum’ – without the Sunday Eucharist, we cannot live.” 

Pope Benedict concluded by urging all pilgrims to turn to the Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus, who was described by Pope John Paul II as the “Woman of the Eucharist.”
 
“At her school, our lives become fully ‘Eucharistic’, open to God and others, capable of transforming evil into good with the power of love, striving to promote unity, fellowship, brotherhood.”

via Catholic News Agency

It seems as no mystery to me that the Church’s calendar celebrates the Body and Blood this past Sunday and then today, Monday, we have the option of celebrating the memorial of St. Cyril of Alexandria and in the old calendar (1962 Roman Missal) we celebrate Our Lady of Perpetual Help whose image is of the Blessed Virgin holding the infant Jesus.

All of this ties in to the fact that there is nothing more important than Christ. Nothing more important than knowing that He is present in the Blessed Sacrament. And that there is no creature better apt at helping us to see, believe and understand this than His Own Mother.

She lived Who we receive in Communion. Her relatives were filled with the Holy Spirit upon hearing her voice while she carried the Lord in the tabernacle that was her womb. She adored Him humbled on the Cross, the Lamb of God, for our sins.

Get to Adoration today! Find out more about Adoration and where by visiting The Real Presence Eucharistic Education and Adoration Association.


The Anima Christi

Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from Christ’s side, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
O good Jesus, hear me
Within Thy wounds hide me
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee
From the malicious enemy defend me
In the hour of my death call me
And bid me come unto Thee
That I may praise Thee with Thy saints
and with Thy angels
Forever and ever
Amen.


“I love You, O my God, and my only desire is to love You until the last breath of my life. I love You, O my infinitely lovable God, and I would rather die loving You, than live without loving You. I love You, Lord and the only grace I ask is to love You eternally….My God, if my tongue cannot say in every moment that I love You, I want my heart to repeat it to You as often as I draw breath.”

Saint John Vianney.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Pope Benedict XVI says Psalms “prayer book par excellence”

AMMAN, JORDAN - MAY 09:  Pope Benedict XVI vis...

Pope Benedict XVI referred to the Psalms as the “prayer book par excellence,” as he spoke at his weekly general audience on June 22.

The 150 Psalms “express all human experience,” the Pope told the 10,000 people gathered in St. Peter’s Square for his Wednesday audience. Nevertheless, he continued, their diverse content can be reduced to two basic categories: petition (and/or lamentation) and praise. These two categories, he said, “intertwine and fuse together in a single song which celebrates the eternal grace of the Lord as He bows down to our frailty.”

With those to categories, the Pope said, the Book of Psalms “teach us to pray.” Those who prayerfully recite the Psalms “speak to God with the words of God, addressing Him with the words He Himself taught us.” He pointed out that Jesus used the Psalms in his own prayers.

The Psalms frequently offer some prefiguration of the Gospel story, the Pope observed; and they are cited often in the New Testament. Most of the Psalms are attributed to King David, who prefigured the Messiah. Pope Benedict said: “In Jesus Christ and in his paschal mystery the Psalms find their deepest meaning and prophetic fulfillment.”

via Catholic Culture | Psalms: the ultimate book of prayer

I do not know many who would argue against referring to the Psalms as a sort of “Cliff’s Notes” of our salvation history. Yet, I know not one Protestant who “prays” the Psalms claiming that doing so is tantamount to repetitious, vain prayer. Hogwash!

As the Pope rightly points out, the Psalms “express all human experience” and provides for us prayers and insight for all moments of our lives. There are prayers of deliverance such as Psalm 91, which can be used in direct combat with the Enemy (obviously this does not replace the need for an exorcist in the case of possession or other more serious demonic manifestations), Psalms of healing and of praise and of prophecy.

The Book of Psalms is the ultimate prayerbook for Christians!

Enhanced by Zemanta

Archbishop Gomez and the New Evangelization

I started my Facebook page, and my new Twitter account, because as a bishop I am called to be a servant of souls and a servant of the Gospel. The Church must always be where her people are. More and more, our people are on the Internet. [This is a bishop who gets it. The world is changing; we can’t simply witness to the Christian faith using the methods of the 19th century–or even the 1990’s! Those days a gone! While holding on to what is good, we also need to embrace new methods. The whole world has gone on-line–it’s time for the Church to meet them there.]

They are using these new media and technology to build friendships and community, to express their spiritual needs, and to nourish their faith. [Well said! All three of these areas are important. And what comes first is building friendships and community. To often we want to just “nourish” people’s faith. Unfortunately, we do so in an individualist way and forget that, as humans, we are social animal!]

I have long believed that as a Church we need to increase our pastoral presence in this digital “environment.” [Indeed, he was talking about this long before almost any one else!]

The Church has always found ways to use new media to spread the Gospel — beginning with the printing press, then radio, television and cable, and now the Internet. [And yet we seem to have forgotten this. How many young Catholics are really going into new media with a heart to evangelize? By the way–shameless plug–if you’re interested in taking up this challenge, check out JP Catholic. We specialize in precisely this–watch this video and this one.]

The early Christians were able to spread the Gospel so rapidly because the Roman Empire had a vast network of roads. This enabled missionaries to travel to every part of the known world to preach the good news face-to-face.

I believe we have a similar opportunity now in the avenues opened up by the Internet.

Pope Benedict XVI has described the world of on-line communications and social networking as a “digital continent”. [Pope Benedict is awesome.] That is a powerful image for us to reflect on.

As the Church sends missionaries to every continent, we now need to send missionaries to proclaim the Gospel in this new digital continent also. 

This is not only the work of bishops and priests. It is the work of everyone in the Church. We are all called to evangelize this new “continent.”

This new continent has its own landscape, its areas of danger and unknown. The people who “live” in this continent have their own languages, customs and cultures. We have to learn all about this continent in order to evangelize it.

The Sacred Page, run by three Biblical theology professors, recently posted an inline commentary of an article detailing the reasoning behind Archbishop Gomez’s (the Archbishop of Los Angeles, former auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of San Antonio) recent foray into social media.

To repeat what the author’s of the Sacred Page wrote of this, “This is a bishop who gets it.” We Catholics, like every other Christian, are called to be evangelists by virtue of our baptism into Christ. We need to be spreading the Gospel. And the way things look nowadays, we need to be preaching the Word post-haste.

Christians need to engage the world and “preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles…For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men” (1 Corinthians (RSV) 1:23, 25). This, of course, will not make the “world” happy but the Truth, despite its power to set you free, is not always joyous at first.

So let’s get with the program and get active in charitable evangelization.

Archbishop Gomez and the New Evangelization

I started my Facebook page, and my new Twitter account, because as a bishop I am called to be a servant of souls and a servant of the Gospel. The Church must always be where her people are. More and more, our people are on the Internet. [This is a bishop who gets it. The world is changing; we can’t simply witness to the Christian faith using the methods of the 19th century—or even the 1990’s! Those days a gone! While holding on to what is good, we also need to embrace new methods. The whole world has gone on-line—it’s time for the Church to meet them there.]
They are using these new media and technology to build friendships and community, to express their spiritual needs, and to nourish their faith. [Well said! All three of these areas are important. And what comes first is building friendships and community. To often we want to just “nourish” people’s faith. Unfortunately, we do so in an individualist way and forget that, as humans, we are social animal!]
I have long believed that as a Church we need to increase our pastoral presence in this digital “environment.” [Indeed, he was talking about this long before almost any one else!]
The Church has always found ways to use new media to spread the Gospel — beginning with the printing press, then radio, television and cable, and now the Internet. [And yet we seem to have forgotten this. How many young Catholics are really going into new media with a heart to evangelize? By the way—shameless plug—if you’re interested in taking up this challenge, check out JP Catholic. We specialize in precisely this—watch this video and this one.]
The early Christians were able to spread the Gospel so rapidly because the Roman Empire had a vast network of roads. This enabled missionaries to travel to every part of the known world to preach the good news face-to-face.
I believe we have a similar opportunity now in the avenues opened up by the Internet.
Pope Benedict XVI has described the world of on-line communications and social networking as a “digital continent”. [Pope Benedict is awesome.] That is a powerful image for us to reflect on.
As the Church sends missionaries to every continent, we now need to send missionaries to proclaim the Gospel in this new digital continent also. 

This is not only the work of bishops and priests. It is the work of everyone in the Church. We are all called to evangelize this new “continent.”
This new continent has its own landscape, its areas of danger and unknown. The people who “live” in this continent have their own languages, customs and cultures. We have to learn all about this continent in order to evangelize it.

The Sacred Page, run by three Biblical theology professors, recently posted an inline commentary of an article detailing the reasoning behind Archbishop Gomez’s (the Archbishop of Los Angeles, former auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of San Antonio) recent foray into social media.
To repeat what the author’s of the Sacred Page wrote of this, “This is a bishop who gets it.” We Catholics, like every other Christian, are called to be evangelists by virtue of our baptism into Christ. We need to be spreading the Gospel. And the way things look nowadays, we need to be preaching the Word post-haste.
Christians need to engage the world and “preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles…For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men” (1 Corinthians (RSV) 1:23, 25). This, of course, will not make the “world” happy but the Truth, despite its power to set you free, is not always joyous at first.
So let’s get with the program and get active in charitable evangelization.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Responding to “Liberalism in the Catholic Church”

Media_httpuploadwikim_xgyha

Image via Wikipedia

EMBLEM OF THE PAPACY: TRIPLE TIARA AND KEYS

First I would like to note that the following comment came from a friend on Facebook who was responding to my own endorsement of “Liberalism in the Catholic Church” a fine post on the Called to Communion website. The author of the post begins:

Catholicism is a religion of truth, not opinion. This truth is a divinely revealed truth, not simply one we make up as we go along. Be that as it may, it is no secret that the Catholic Church is beset by certain elements that reject the revealed truth of the faith. It is a spirit that seeks to overturn revealed truth in favor of modern capitulations. It is an idea that the revealed truth is ‘outdated’ and needs to be revised because modern man is, well, modern. This spirit is often called ‘Liberalism.’

He goes on to quote the famous Anglican convert and Blessed John Cardinal Henry Newman who defines liberalism in religion as:

Liberalism in religion is the doctrine that there is no positive truth in religion, but that one creed is as good as another, and this is the teaching which is gaining force and substance daily. It is inconsistent with any recognition of any religion, as true. It teaches that all are to be tolerated, for all are matters of opinion. Revealed religion is not a truth, but a sentiment and a taste; not an objective fact, not miraculous; and it is the right of each individual to make it say just what strikes his fancy. Devotion is not necessarily founded on faith. Men may go to Protestant Churches and to Catholic, may get good from both and belong to neither. They may fraternize together in spiritual thoughts and feelings, without having any views at all of doctrine in common, or seeing the need of them. (Blessed John Henry Newman’s Roman Address of 1879 as quoted in “Letters to a Young Catholic” by George Weigel)

In my posting or commenting on this article on Facebook (how it ended up there I am not exactly sure but whatever) I simply stated that the author’s observations were on point and liberalism of this sort and absolute Truth do not get on well.
My friend, whom I believe is a baptized Catholic and knew well back in the dark days of my youth stated the following:

There are some sticky issues here. Why can’t women lead? Why can’t priest marry? These are not biblically inspired rather they are tradition. The article is right– liberalism and tradition do not mix. Some of the faithful want progress while others want a return (or more entrenched) to traditionalism. The Church is about community and this ‘split’ causes conflict and division. However, by dismissing the opinions of liberals (and saying it is all their fault), the Church loses some of its essence as well.

For me none of these issues are sticky and the Church’s response, as usual, more that just Biblical it follows in the line of Sacred Tradition, which is that part of the Deposit of Faith verbally passed on from the Apostles themselves. Let me get the meat.


Why can’t women lead?
The issue here is not whether women can lead or not it is why is it that women cannot be ordained priests? To address the actual text, women have, can and do lead. Take a look at our mothers, nuns, bulk of teachers and catechists and most importantly the role of women in Salvation History – most importantly Our Lady. The manner in which our Creator designed us is to function as a complementary pair. That is to say that each gender has a role but work in unity to accomplish the goal.

Now, when thinking in terms of why women cannot be ordained, this is simpler to address. Jesus is a man – a male. And every validly ordained priest acts in the person of Christ when they are celebrating Mass, hearing confessions, etc. (Oh, and there is the fact that there is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit who is the spouse of the Blessed Virgin as a woman cannot impregnate a woman.) Add to this the fact that Jesus Himself did not select any woman (His Mother surely would have been at the top of the list) to share in His priesthood in this ministerial fashion and the case is closed. Not so for liberals.

Religious liberals in the Church wrongly identify the nature of the Church, her authority and the essence of the ministerial priesthood by somehow getting the idea that the Church can change something that is part of the Deposit of Faith. No where in the Church’s over 2,000-year history can anyone see that a woman was ordained a priest. This is a fact of life and cannot be changed but by God Himself.


Why can’t priests marry?
Back in the day I asked my dad this very question and he boiled it down to a simple point that my five-year-old mind could understand: priests are married to the Church. Again, priests act in persona Christi and both Saint Paul and Saint John speak of Church as the bride of Christ but the relationship is probably best recognized Ephesians 5:25, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.”

Let’s do some math: L = H + W. L is for LOVE, H is for HUSBAND and W is for WIFE so if HUSBAND = CHRIST [PRIEST] and WIFE = CHURCH [CHURCH] then a priest loves the Church as a wife and is thus married to her. Oh, and then there is this passage from the Saint Paul:

This is one of the base points for the discipline of Clerical celibacy at the ordination of unmarried men. Wikipedia says this of clerical celibacy:

Clerical celibacy is the discipline by which some or all members of the clergy in certain religions are required to be unmarried. Since these religions consider sinful deliberate sexual thoughts, feelings, and behavior outside of marriage, clerical celibacy also requires abstension from these.[1] In the Latin Catholic Church, clerical celibacy is mandated for bishops and, as a general rule, for priests and for deacons who intend to become priests. In Eastern Christianity, celibacy is mandatory for all bishops and for any priest who has been ordained while unmarried or who has lost his wife.

Now, there are married priests in the Church, even in the Latin Rite. This is because there is a difference between discipline and doctrine. Disciplines can, in theory, be changes. That said, strong evidence in the Deposit of Faith (Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition) make this highly – extremely – unlikely.


The Faithful Want Progress
If you are faithful and want progress then seek to adhere to the teachings of the Church, which is the sole authorized, visible representative of Christ on Earth. “He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you rejects me, and he who rejects me rejects him who sent me” (Luke 10:16).

Any person who wants to truly progress in their faith need only follow the Word, which means accepting Jesus Christ, His Church and the Sacraments He left for us: Baptism, Reconciliation, Communion, Confirmation, Matrimony, Holy Orders and Anointing of the Sick. A little Eucharistic Adoration and a strong devotion to the Blessed Mother doesn’t hurt either.

Oh, on splits and divisions. John the Baptist said this of Jesus and what Our Blessed Lord will do with the wheat and the chaff:

“His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor, and to gather the wheat into his granary, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”  (Luke 3:17)

Media_httpimgzemantac_qyhii

<script defer=”defer” src=”http://static.zemanta.com/readside/loader.js&#8221; type=”text/javascript”>
</script>

Responding to "Liberalism in the Catholic Church"

emblem of the Papacy: Triple tiara and keysImage via Wikipedia
EMBLEM OF THE PAPACY: TRIPLE TIARA AND KEYS

First I would like to note that the following comment came from a friend on Facebook who was responding to my own endorsement of “Liberalism in the Catholic Church” a fine post on the Called to Communion website. The author of the post begins:

Catholicism is a religion of truth, not opinion. This truth is a divinely revealed truth, not simply one we make up as we go along. Be that as it may, it is no secret that the Catholic Church is beset by certain elements that reject the revealed truth of the faith. It is a spirit that seeks to overturn revealed truth in favor of modern capitulations. It is an idea that the revealed truth is ‘outdated’ and needs to be revised because modern man is, well, modern. This spirit is often called ‘Liberalism.’

He goes on to quote the famous Anglican convert and Blessed John Cardinal Henry Newman who defines liberalism in religion as:

Liberalism in religion is the doctrine that there is no positive truth in religion, but that one creed is as good as another, and this is the teaching which is gaining force and substance daily. It is inconsistent with any recognition of any religion, as true. It teaches that all are to be tolerated, for all are matters of opinion. Revealed religion is not a truth, but a sentiment and a taste; not an objective fact, not miraculous; and it is the right of each individual to make it say just what strikes his fancy. Devotion is not necessarily founded on faith. Men may go to Protestant Churches and to Catholic, may get good from both and belong to neither. They may fraternize together in spiritual thoughts and feelings, without having any views at all of doctrine in common, or seeing the need of them. (Blessed John Henry Newman’s Roman Address of 1879 as quoted in “Letters to a Young Catholic” by George Weigel)

In my posting or commenting on this article on Facebook (how it ended up there I am not exactly sure but whatever) I simply stated that the author’s observations were on point and liberalism of this sort and absolute Truth do not get on well.
My friend, whom I believe is a baptized Catholic and knew well back in the dark days of my youth stated the following:

There are some sticky issues here. Why can’t women lead? Why can’t priest marry? These are not biblically inspired rather they are tradition. The article is right— liberalism and tradition do not mix. Some of the faithful want progress while others want a return (or more entrenched) to traditionalism. The Church is about community and this ‘split’ causes conflict and division. However, by dismissing the opinions of liberals (and saying it is all their fault), the Church loses some of its essence as well.

For me none of these issues are sticky and the Church’s response, as usual, more that just Biblical it follows in the line of Sacred Tradition, which is that part of the Deposit of Faith verbally passed on from the Apostles themselves. Let me get the meat.


Why can’t women lead?
The issue here is not whether women can lead or not it is why is it that women cannot be ordained priests? To address the actual text, women have, can and do lead. Take a look at our mothers, nuns, bulk of teachers and catechists and most importantly the role of women in Salvation History – most importantly Our Lady. The manner in which our Creator designed us is to function as a complementary pair. That is to say that each gender has a role but work in unity to accomplish the goal.

Now, when thinking in terms of why women cannot be ordained, this is simpler to address. Jesus is a man – a male. And every validly ordained priest acts in the person of Christ when they are celebrating Mass, hearing confessions, etc. (Oh, and there is the fact that there is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit who is the spouse of the Blessed Virgin as a woman cannot impregnate a woman.) Add to this the fact that Jesus Himself did not select any woman (His Mother surely would have been at the top of the list) to share in His priesthood in this ministerial fashion and the case is closed. Not so for liberals.

Religious liberals in the Church wrongly identify the nature of the Church, her authority and the essence of the ministerial priesthood by somehow getting the idea that the Church can change something that is part of the Deposit of Faith. No where in the Church’s over 2,000-year history can anyone see that a woman was ordained a priest. This is a fact of life and cannot be changed but by God Himself.


Why can’t priests marry?
Back in the day I asked my dad this very question and he boiled it down to a simple point that my five-year-old mind could understand: priests are married to the Church. Again, priests act in persona Christi and both Saint Paul and Saint John speak of Church as the bride of Christ but the relationship is probably best recognized Ephesians 5:25, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.”

Let’s do some math: L = H + W. L is for LOVE, H is for HUSBAND and W is for WIFE so if HUSBAND = CHRIST [PRIEST] and WIFE = CHURCH [CHURCH] then a priest loves the Church as a wife and is thus married to her. Oh, and then there is this passage from the Saint Paul:

This is one of the base points for the discipline of Clerical celibacy at the ordination of unmarried men. Wikipedia says this of clerical celibacy:

Clerical celibacy is the discipline by which some or all members of the clergy in certain religions are required to be unmarried. Since these religions consider sinful deliberate sexual thoughts, feelings, and behavior outside of marriage, clerical celibacy also requires abstension from these.[1] In the Latin Catholic Church, clerical celibacy is mandated for bishops and, as a general rule, for priests and for deacons who intend to become priests. In Eastern Christianity, celibacy is mandatory for all bishops and for any priest who has been ordained while unmarried or who has lost his wife.

Now, there are married priests in the Church, even in the Latin Rite. This is because there is a difference between discipline and doctrine. Disciplines can, in theory, be changes. That said, strong evidence in the Deposit of Faith (Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition) make this highly – extremely – unlikely.


The Faithful Want Progress
If you are faithful and want progress then seek to adhere to the teachings of the Church, which is the sole authorized, visible representative of Christ on Earth. “He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you rejects me, and he who rejects me rejects him who sent me” (Luke 10:16).

Any person who wants to truly progress in their faith need only follow the Word, which means accepting Jesus Christ, His Church and the Sacraments He left for us: Baptism, Reconciliation, Communion, Confirmation, Matrimony, Holy Orders and Anointing of the Sick. A little Eucharistic Adoration and a strong devotion to the Blessed Mother doesn’t hurt either.

Oh, on splits and divisions. John the Baptist said this of Jesus and what Our Blessed Lord will do with the wheat and the chaff:

“His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor, and to gather the wheat into his granary, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”  (Luke 3:17)

Enhanced by Zemanta