Tag Archives: Pope Benedict XVI

Culture Of Life

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Is to see to it, that euthanasia and abortion are not only illegal, but unthinkable. For the love of the next generations..

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The problem today is average souls have been brainwashed to believe that just because someone has a degree, they are right and just. They are just human as you and I. If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong…

EVANGELIUM VITAE


To the Bishops
Priests and Deacons
Men and Women religious
lay Faithful
and all People of Good Will
on the Value and Inviolability
of Human Life

DECLARATION ON EUTHANASIA

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The Carpenters Supply

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A 2 by 4.

Building…

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Living Proof All Around

Vatican Pope

With the release of Pope Francis encyclica, Lumen Fidei, (PDF HERE) today, which he worked with the help of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, the Consecration to St. Michael the Archangel, along with the news of the Beatification of Blessed Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXIII, I can say its been a busy faith full day, and not business as usual.

I had announced on July 1 via my Facebook page:

In 1998, I had a very amazing encounter, in which I was asked questions about things only God knew about me. In this encounter, events were mentioned and I was asked about them… I thought it was just a “Conversation”. Most everything that has been told to me, has come to pass. The only thing I can say about this with true understanding is this: It brought me back home to our Lord. I do not fear the things taking place. I only have fear of the Lord.

I stand by this, because:

“The entire conversation is etched on my soul, and I remember it and the events that took place during, and after as if they are being read back to me, and pointed out as they occur. I have lived like this since that day, watching, sometimes in the past, trembling in fear, and now, in love and understanding. The very fact I am saying this today, is in direct correlation to when I was told to reveal this about me. I do not fear what others may say, as I know without a doubt, this could only be done by God, and the things He has done to my soul only He could do. Glory to God. Repent. Today I know I am not alone.”

You see, when my conversion began in full swing, my family and even for a moment, thought I was crazy, because I did not have the gift of “Understanding” from the Holy Spirit in order to “See” where I was in my sinfulness, when God had called my name. I knew in my heart, no one could know the things in my heart, but God. And He did and still does. This brings an entirely different meaning to the words spoken to me back then: “The men in the “White Suits” are going to help you”. I had taken this to mean that I should place my faith in the medicine the world was giving me, and to the worldly, the men in the white suits are not a good thing. I am a repentant sinner who fully understands that I am not home yet. With the grace and mercy of God, through our Lord, He will lead me there one day.

I know without a doubt today, after reading Lumen Fidei, I have lived this faith and continue to do just that through the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Glory to God. Good and merciful Lord, THANK YOU!

Through my faith in You O LORD, today! I declare, You created me, You touched me, You saved me, You redeemed me, and I know, You love me! You O Lord are my God. There is no other, you O Lord, are God. You O Lord are whom I love above all things. With your grace O Lord, may I stay with you in Your light, to do they will, and pull closer to you every day, through hope, love and mercy. AMEN

NOTHING that I have said here should give glory to me, nor do I seek any, but only to give everything to God. “Be not afraid”.

Consecration to St. Michael:
Saint Michael the Archangel, invincible Prince of the Angelic hosts and glorious protector of the universal Church, I greet thee and praise thee for that splendour with which God has adorned thee so richly. I thank God for the great graces He hast bestowed upon thee, especially to remain faithful when Satan and his followers rebelled, and to battle victoriously for the honour of God and the Divinity of the Son of Man.

Saint Michael, I consecrate to thee __________________. I choose thee as our patron and protector and entrust the salvation of my soul to thy care. Be the guardian of my obligation as a child of God and of the Catholic Church as again I renounce Satan, his works and pomps.
Assist me by thy powerful intercession in the fulfilment of these sacred promises, so that imitating thy courage and loyalty to God, and trusting in thy kind help and protection, I may be victorious over the enemies of my soul and be united with God in Heaven forever. Amen.

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“The Church Belongs to Christ”

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Today, Pope Benedict XVI celebrated his last public mass as pope.

“What sustains and illuminates me is the certainty that the Church belongs to Christ, whose care and guidance will never be lacking” – Pope Benedict XVI

The Legacy of Pope Benedict XVI: A commentary by Fr. Barron

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Pope Benedict XVI

The cross of Pope Benedict XVI

Upon hearing the news this morning about Pope Benedict XVI, after the shock has settled quickly, I take to heart and understand our Holy Father has taken everything into account and has made his decision in the best interest of the entire Catholic Church. My personal words to him:

Your Holiness Pope Benedict XVI,

I love you and thank you for leading us through one of the most trying times in history. It is as if we have come to the juncture where the road once again become steep and another is needed for this part of the travel. The famine of faith in the world is raging in the golden years of your life. I take the words of our Lord seriously and trust in Him and your decision. “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” I keep you in my prayers and trust in the Holy Spirit to bring us another, not to fill your shoes, but rather to fill the shoes of our Lord and what He needs from us and what He is asking of us for now.

Most Holy Father I love you and thank you.

Full text of Pope’s declaration:

Dear Brothers,

I have convoked you to this Consistory, not only for the three canonizations, but also to communicate to you a decision of great importance for the life of the Church. After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry. I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering. However, in today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the bark of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me. For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter, entrusted to me by the Cardinals on 19 April 2005, in such a way, that as from 28 February 2013, at 20:00 hours, the See of Rome, the See of Saint Peter, will be vacant and a Conclave to elect the new Supreme Pontiff will have to be convoked by those whose competence it is. Dear Brothers, I thank you most sincerely for all the love and work with which you have supported me in my ministry and I ask pardon for all my defects. And now, let us entrust the Holy Church to the care of Our Supreme Pastor, Our Lord Jesus Christ, and implore his holy Mother Mary, so that she may assist the Cardinal Fathers with her maternal solicitude, in electing a new Supreme Pontiff. With regard to myself, I wish to also devotedly serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer.
From the Vatican, 10 February 2013
BENEDICTUS PP XVI

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Faith And The Future

“The church will become small and will have to start afresh more or less from the beginning. She will no longer be able to inhabit many of the edifices she built in prosperity. As the number of her adherents diminishes . . . she will lose many of her social privileges. . . As a small society, [the Church] will make much bigger demands on the initiative of her individual members…. It will be hard-going for the Church, for the process of crystallization and clarification will cost her much valuable energy. It will make her poor and cause her to become the Church of the meek . . . The process will be long and wearisome as was the road from the false progressivism on the eve of the French Revolution — when a bishop might be thought smart if he made fun of dogmas and even insinuated that the existence of God was by no means certain . . . But when the trial of this sifting is past, a great power will flow from a more spiritualized and simplified Church. Men in a totally planned world will find themselves unspeakably lonely. If they have completely lost sight of God, they will feel the whole horror of their poverty. Then they will discover the little flock of believers as something wholly new. They will discover it as a hope that is meant for them, an answer for which they have always been searching in secret. And so it seems certain to me that the Church is facing very hard times. The real crisis has scarcely begun. We will have to count on terrific upheavals. But I am equally certain about what will remain at the end: not the Church of the political cult, which is dead already, but the Church of faith. She may well no longer be the dominant social power to the extent that she was until recently; but she will enjoy a fresh blossoming and be seen as man’s home, where he will find life and hope beyond death.

-Fr. Joseph Ratzinger (Benedict XVI), from his book Faith and the Future

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Semper Fi

Always Faithful

“And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven.”Matt.16:18-19.

There is a new website to pledge fidelity to Pope Benedict XVI, called Semper Fidelis International. How absolutely fitting! From the site:

Semper Fidelis International’, a new website and initiative of a small group of Irish catholics, was officially launched this day, Sunday June 17th 2012, to mark the closing ceremony of the 50th jubilee International Eucharistic Congress, Croke Park, Dublin Ireland. This, with the deepest gratitude to and affection for Our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, for granting Ireland this unique privilege. May the fruits be immense!

This initiative is consecrated to the united hearts of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and to Our Blessed Lady, Mary our Mother and Queen. The Latin, ‘Semper Fidelis, refers to the final words spoken by Pope John Paul II as he left Ireland in 1979: “Ireland semper fidelis” or “Ireland, always faithful”, which were said three times.

A preliminary letter from Irish catholics in particular, either as individuals, prayer groups or apostolates, pledging our fidelity to the Holy Father and Magisterium is to be sent to the Pope Benedict XVI, for the feast of SS Peter and Paul June 29th this year. Mindful that this landmark occasion in the renewal of our Irish Church, was equally an International Eucharistic Congress and to give our fellow catholics all over the world, an opportunity to also pledge their fidelity, ‘Semper Fidelis International’ was born. We have translated this simple message: ‘Letter from the International Catholic Community’, into ten languages (and counting) for a global campaign to: ‘Send Pope Benedict XVI Your Pledge of Fidelity!’

The feast of Christ the King, November 25th 2012 is the final date set for submission of all final signatures and pledges to this holy Pope, on whom we invoke God’s special protection and Our Lady’s tender and loving care. It is envisaged that on significant feast days each month until then, we will update this website to focus on and call for a great unity of prayer worldwide for the Holy Father’s protection, consolation and intentions. In particular, all are strongly encouraged to follow the links on the Home Page: ‘Invitation to join with the Holy Father as he prays the Rosary each evening at 6.45pm Rome time (5.45 pm GMT or whenever possible) as well as the ‘Papal Intention’ tab and to meditate on the reflections.
Let us pray Our Lady’s most powerful Rosary, not only for, but actually spiritually united with Our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI

Happy birthday “Chesty” Puller!

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Holy Thursday

From the Vatican: A must read!

HOMILY OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI

Saint Peter’s Basilica
Holy Thursday, 5 April 2012

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

At this Holy Mass our thoughts go back to that moment when, through prayer and the laying on of hands, the bishop made us sharers in the priesthood of Jesus Christ, so that we might be “consecrated in truth” (Jn 17:19), as Jesus besought the Father for us in his high-priestly prayer. He himself is the truth. He has consecrated us, that is to say, handed us over to God for ever, so that we can offer men and women a service that comes from God and leads to him. But does our consecration extend to the daily reality of our lives – do we operate as men of God in fellowship with Jesus Christ? This question places the Lord before us and us before him. “Are you resolved to be more united with the Lord Jesus and more closely conformed to him, denying yourselves and confirming those promises about sacred duties towards Christ’s Church which, prompted by love of him, you willingly and joyfully pledged on the day of your priestly ordination?” After this homily, I shall be addressing that question to each of you here and to myself as well. Two things, above all, are asked of us: there is a need for an interior bond, a configuration to Christ, and at the same time there has to be a transcending of ourselves, a renunciation of what is simply our own, of the much-vaunted self-fulfilment. We need, I need, not to claim my life as my own, but to place it at the disposal of another – of Christ. I should be asking not what I stand to gain, but what I can give for him and so for others. Or to put it more specifically, this configuration to Christ, who came not to be served but to serve, who does not take, but rather gives – what form does it take in the often dramatic situation of the Church today? Recently a group of priests from a European country issued a summons to disobedience, and at the same time gave concrete examples of the forms this disobedience might take, even to the point of disregarding definitive decisions of the Church’s Magisterium, such as the question of women’s ordination, for which Blessed Pope John Paul II stated irrevocably that the Church has received no authority from the Lord. Is disobedience a path of renewal for the Church? We would like to believe that the authors of this summons are motivated by concern for the Church, that they are convinced that the slow pace of institutions has to be overcome by drastic measures, in order to open up new paths and to bring the Church up to date. But is disobedience really a way to do this? Do we sense here anything of that configuration to Christ which is the precondition for all true renewal, or do we merely sense a desperate push to do something to change the Church in accordance with one’s own preferences and ideas?

But let us not oversimplify matters. Surely Christ himself corrected human traditions which threatened to stifle the word and the will of God? Indeed he did, so as to rekindle obedience to the true will of God, to his ever enduring word. His concern was for true obedience, as opposed to human caprice. Nor must we forget: he was the Son, possessed of singular authority and responsibility to reveal the authentic will of God, so as to open up the path for God’s word to the world of the nations. And finally: he lived out his task with obedience and humility all the way to the Cross, and so gave credibility to his mission. Not my will, but thine be done: these words reveal to us the Son, in his humility and his divinity, and they show us the true path.

Let us ask again: do not such reflections serve simply to defend inertia, the fossilization of traditions? No. Anyone who considers the history of the post-conciliar era can recognize the process of true renewal, which often took unexpected forms in living movements and made almost tangible the inexhaustible vitality of holy Church, the presence and effectiveness of the Holy Spirit. And if we look at the people from whom these fresh currents of life burst forth and continue to burst forth, then we see that this new fruitfulness requires being filled with the joy of faith, the radicalism of obedience, the dynamic of hope and the power of love.

Dear friends, it is clear that configuration to Christ is the precondition and the basis for all renewal. But perhaps at times the figure of Jesus Christ seems too lofty and too great for us to dare to measure ourselves by him. The Lord knows this. So he has provided “translations” on a scale that is more accessible and closer to us. For this same reason, Saint Paul did not hesitate to say to his communities: Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ. For his disciples, he was a “translation” of Christ’s manner of life that they could see and identify with. Ever since Paul’s time, history has furnished a constant flow of other such “translations” of Jesus’ way into historical figures. We priests can call to mind a great throng of holy priests who have gone before us and shown us the way: from Polycarp of Smyrna and Ignatius of Antioch, from the great pastors Ambrose, Augustine and Gregory the Great, through to Ignatius of Loyola, Charles Borromeo, John Mary Vianney and the priest-martyrs of the 20th century, and finally Pope John Paul II, who gave us an example, through his activity and his suffering, of configuration to Christ as “gift and mystery”. The saints show us how renewal works and how we can place ourselves at its service. And they help us realize that God is not concerned so much with great numbers and with outward successes, but achieves his victories under the humble sign of the mustard seed.

Dear friends, I would like briefly to touch on two more key phrases from the renewal of ordination promises, which should cause us to reflect at this time in the Church’s life and in our own lives. Firstly, the reminder that – as Saint Paul put it – we are “stewards of the mysteries of God” (1 Cor 4:1) and we are charged with the ministry of teaching, the (munus docendi), which forms a part of this stewardship of God’s mysteries, through which he shows us his face and his heart, in order to give us himself. At the meeting of Cardinals on the occasion of the recent Consistory, several of the pastors of the Church spoke, from experience, of the growing religious illiteracy found in the midst of our sophisticated society. The foundations of faith, which at one time every child knew, are now known less and less. But if we are to live and love our faith, if we are to love God and to hear him aright, we need to know what God has said to us – our minds and hearts must be touched by his word. The Year of Faith, commemorating the opening of the Second Vatican Council fifty years ago, should provide us with an occasion to proclaim the message of faith with new enthusiasm and new joy. We find it of course first and foremost in sacred Scripture, which we can never read and ponder enough. Yet at the same time we all experience the need for help in accurately expounding it in the present day, if it is truly to touch our hearts. This help we find first of all in the words of the teaching Church: the texts of the Second Vatican Council and the Catechism of the Catholic Church are essential tools which serve as an authentic guide to what the Church believes on the basis of God’s word. And of course this also includes the whole wealth of documents given to us by Pope John Paul II, still far from being fully explored.

All our preaching must measure itself against the saying of Jesus Christ: “My teaching is not mine” (Jn 7:16). We preach not private theories and opinions, but the faith of the Church, whose servants we are. Naturally this should not be taken to mean that I am not completely supportive of this teaching, or solidly anchored in it. In this regard I am always reminded of the words of Saint Augustine: what is so much mine as myself? And what is so little mine as myself? I do not own myself, and I become myself by the very fact that I transcend myself, and thereby become a part of Christ, a part of his body the Church. If we do not preach ourselves, and if we are inwardly so completely one with him who called us to be his ambassadors, that we are shaped by faith and live it, then our preaching will be credible. I do not seek to win people for myself, but I give myself. The Curé of Ars was no scholar, no intellectual, we know that. But his preaching touched people’s hearts because his own heart had been touched.

The last keyword that I should like to consider is “zeal for souls”: animarum zelus. It is an old-fashioned expression, not much used these days. In some circles, the word “soul” is virtually banned because – ostensibly – it expresses a body-soul dualism that wrongly compartmentalizes the human being. Of course the human person is a unity, destined for eternity as body and soul. And yet that cannot mean that we no longer have a soul, a constituent principle guaranteeing our unity in this life and beyond earthly death. And as priests, of course, we are concerned for the whole person, including his or her physical needs – we care for the hungry, the sick, the homeless. And yet we are concerned not only with the body, but also with the needs of the soul: with those who suffer from the violation of their rights or from destroyed love, with those unable to perceive the truth, those who suffer for lack of truth and love. We are concerned with the salvation of men and women in body and soul. And as priests of Jesus Christ we carry out our task with enthusiasm. No one should ever have the impression that we work conscientiously when on duty, but before and after hours we belong only to ourselves. A priest never belongs to himself. People must sense our zeal, through which we bear credible witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Let us ask the Lord to fill us with joy in his message, so that we may serve his truth and his love with joyful zeal. Amen.

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The Erosion Of Religious Freedom In The United States

Pope Benedict XVI issued a solemn warning about the erosion of religious freedom in the United States, in a January 19 address to visiting American bishops.

The Holy Father told the American prelates, who were making their ad limina visits, that “it is imperative that the entire Catholic community in the United States come to realize the grave threats to the Church’s public moral witness presented by a radical secularism which finds increasing expression in the political and cultural spheres.” He added: “The seriousness of these threats needs to be clearly appreciated at every level of ecclesial life.”

The US should be a land thoroughly committed to religious freedom in light of its history and the fundamental principles of the nation’s founding, the Pope argued. He said:

At the heart of every culture, whether perceived or not, is a consensus about the nature of reality and the moral good, and thus about the conditions for human flourishing. In America, that consensus, as enshrined in your nation’s founding documents, was grounded in a worldview shaped not only by faith but a commitment to certain ethical principles deriving from nature and nature’s God. Today that consensus has eroded significantly in the face of powerful new cultural currents which are not only directly opposed to core moral teachings of the Judeo-Christian tradition, but increasingly hostile to Christianity as such.

The loss of religious freedom, the Pontiff warned, is “a threat not just to Christian faith, but also to humanity itself.” He explained: “When a culture attempts to suppress the dimension of ultimate mystery, and to close the doors to transcendent truth, it inevitably becomes impoverished and falls prey, as the late Pope John Paul II so clearly saw, to reductionist and totalitarian readings of the human person and the nature of society.”

Pope Benedict urged the American bishops to take every opportunity to defend religious freedom and to promote moral reasoning based on the natural law. He reminded them that the natural-law tradition does not impose restrictions on true human freedom. That tradition, he said, should be properly understood as “a ‘language’ which enables us to understand ourselves and the truth of our being, and so to shape a more just and humane world.”

The Pope said that he was dismayed by reports from the American bishops about new threats to religious freedom. He mentioned especially the initiatives that would “deny the right of conscientious objection” to people who are morally opposed to “cooperation in intrinsically evil practices.” Here the Pontiff was obviously referring to policies that would require health-care personnel to cooperate in abortions, or force both public officials and private individuals to participate in the celebration of same-sex marriages or refer children for adoption by gay couples. The US bishops have sharply criticized the Obama administration for its unwillingness to afford “conscience clause” protections to religious believers.

An AP story on the Pope’s address accurately reported that American Catholics have been divided on the duties of Catholic lawmakers regarding policies that violate the precepts of Church teaching. The AP story concluded: “In recent years, a small but growing number of local bishops have publicly told Catholic lawmakers who support abortion rights not to present themselves for communion because of their stance on the issue.”

Hat tip to Fr-Ronald M Vierling via Facebook From CNA

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