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Volume 5, Issue 168

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  • John N. Lupia
    Roman Catholic News Volume 5, Issue 168 FRIDAY 2 DECEMBER 2005 Friday of the First Week in Advent FIRST FRIDAY IN HONOR OF THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS * * * WEAR
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 1, 2005
      Roman Catholic News

      Volume 5, Issue 168

      FRIDAY 2 DECEMBER 2005

      Friday of the First Week in Advent


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      * * *

      . Benedict XVI Urges Political Action Against Drugs
      . Benedict XVI's Address to Austrian Bishops

      * * *

      VATICAN CITY, DEC 2, 2005 (VIS) - This morning, in the Vatican's "Redemptoris Mater" chapel, the Pope attended the first sermon of Advent, delivered, in keeping with tradition, by Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa O.F.M. Cap., preacher of the Pontifical Household.
        The theme of this year's meditations is: "We preach Jesus Christ as Lord (2 Cor. 4, 5). Faith in Christ today." The remaining three Advent sermons will be given on December 9, 16 and 23.

      * * *

      VATICAN CITY, DEC 2, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences eighteen bishops from the Conference of the Polish Episcopate on their "ad limina" visit:
          - Archbishop-Bishop Alfons Nossol of Opole, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishops Jan Kopiec and Pawel Stobrawa.
          - Bishop Tadeusz Rakoczy of Bielsko-Zywiec, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishop Janusz Edmund Zimniak.
          - Bishop Kazimierz Ryczan if Kielce, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishops Marian Florczyk and Kazimierz Gurda.
          - Bishop Wiktor Skworc of Tarnow, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishop Stanislaw Budzik.
          - Archbishop Wladyslaw Ziolek of Lodz, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishops Adam Lepa and Ireneusz Jozef Pekalski.
          - Bishop Andrzej Dziuba of Lowicz, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishop Jozef Zawitkowski, and by Bishop emeritus Alojzy Orszulik S.A.C.
          - Archbishop Jozef Michalik of Przemysl of the Latins, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishop Adam Szal.
        This evening, he is scheduled to receive in audience Archbishop William Joseph Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, accompanied by Archbishop Angelo Amato S.D.B., secretary of the same congregation.

      * * *

      VATICAN CITY, DEC 2, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Fr. Jose Rafael Quiros Quiros of the clergy of the archdiocese of San Jose de Costa Rica, vicar general, as bishop of Limon (area 10,835, population 446,912, Catholics 348,591, priests 36, religious 52), Costa Rica. The bishop-elect was born in Llano Grande, Colombia in 1955 and ordained a priest in 1981.

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      VATICAN CITY, DEC 2, 2005 (VIS) - The following prelates died in recent weeks:
       - Bishop Bernard Bududira of Bururi, Burundi, on November 19, at the age of 71.
       - Bishop Luis Gabriel Cuara Mendez of Veracruz, Mexico, on November 20, at the age of 66.
       - Bishop Jean-Claude Hertzog, auxiliary of Bordeaux, France, on November 24, at the age of 70.
      - Bishop James McLoughlin, emeritus of Galway and Kilmacduagh, Ireland, on November 25, at the age of 76.
      - Bishop Jose Rolando Gustavo Prevost Godard P.M.E., former apostolic vicar of Pucallpa, Peru, on November 13, at the age of 91.

      * * *

      Benedict XVI Urges Political Action Against Drugs

      VATICAN CITY, DEC. 2, 2005 (Zenit.org).- The battle against drugs calls for political resolve and international cooperation, says Benedict XVI.

      The Pope explained this Thursday when receiving the letters of credence of Gilbert Ramez Chagoury, the new ambassador of the Caribbean island nation of Saint Lucia, which has a population of 166,000, mostly Catholics.

      As part of the "educational and social apostolate," the Holy Father emphasized "the battle against the trade and use of drugs," in his address in English to the diplomat.

      "The will to foil this pernicious threat to the fabric of society, which fuels crime and violence and contributes to the physical and emotional destruction of many individuals and families, demands great political resolve, international cooperation, and the support of the whole community," Benedict XVI stated.

      He added: "I encourage your government in the efforts it is making to address this scourge and assure you that they have the full support of the Catholic faithful."

      * * *

      Benedict XVI's Address to Austrian Bishops
      "We Need to Bring About a 'Change of Course'"

      VATICAN CITY, DEC. 2, 2005 (Zenit.org).- Here is a translation of the address Benedict XVI gave Nov. 5 to Austria's bishops during their five-yearly visit to Rome. The Pope gave the address in German.

      Your Eminence,
      Dear Brothers in the Episcopate,

      The visit of the Pastors of the Church in Austria to the tombs of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul is a fixed appointment and a moment of assessment in the exercise of this office of great responsibility.

      Therefore, dear Brothers, on the occasion of your "ad limina" visit I welcome you to the Apostolic Palace with deep joy. Your pilgrimage strengthens your bonds with the Successor of Peter, and at the same time enables you to experience anew the communion of the universal Church at her center.

      Precisely during the events of recent months, we have been able to experience the full freshness of the Church's vitality and her global missionary energy, especially during the 20th World Youth Day at Cologne last August. Although the spiritual impetus that God enables us to live in these special hours of grace is not always visible in the Church, we know of the promise of our divine Lord and Teacher for all times and all places: "Know that I am with you always, until the end of the world" (Matthew 28: 20).

      Thus, we know that this vital presence of the Risen Lord in his Church is brought about at the same time through the sacramental celebration of his Sacrifice, through Communion, in which we receive his Body and his Blood, and through the experience that is offered to us in the adoration of his Real Presence under the sacred species.

      The intention of the Year of the Eucharist, which has just ended with the Synod of Bishops, was to call the faithful's attention to the source of the Church's life and mission and to what the true summit is, the goal of all our efforts to lead people to their Savior and to reconcile them in him with the Triune God.

      On the basis of these experiences, it is now necessary to analyze calmly and confidently the situation of the Austrian Dioceses in order to identify the key points that require our particular attention for the salvation and good of the flock: "Keep watch over yourselves, and over the whole flock the Holy Spirit has given you to guard. Shepherd the Church of God, which he has acquired at the price of his own blood" (Acts 20: 28). In the certainty of the Lord's presence, let us look courageously into the eyes of reality without letting optimism, which always attracts us, become an obstacle to calling things by their proper name with full objectivity and without embellishment.

      Grievous events are occurring today: The secularization process, constantly gaining momentum in Europe at this time, has not even been halted at the gates of Catholic Austria. Identification with the Church has been eroded in many of the faithful and with it, the certainty of the faith and reverential awe for God's law are lacking.

      Apart from these few observations, dear Brothers in the Episcopate, I do not need to recall in detail here the numerous critical sectors of social life in general and of the ecclesial situation in particular, because I know that they are your constant concerns. I share your anxiety about the Church in your Country.

      So what can we do? God has prepared a remedy for the Church in our time; will you be able to use it to face courageously the challenges you encounter on your way in the third Christian millennium? On the one hand, there is no doubt that we need a clear, courageous and enthusiastic profession of faith in Jesus Christ, who is also alive here and now in his Church and in whom, true to its essence, the human soul oriented to God can find happiness. On the other hand, we need to take numerous small and large missionary measures to bring about a "change of course."

      As you well know, profession of faith is one of the Bishop's most important duties. "I have never shrunk from announcing to you God's design in its entirety," St. Paul said at Miletus to the Presbyters of the Church of Ephesus (Acts 20: 27). It is true that we Bishops must act prudently. However, this prudence must not prevent us from presenting the Word of God in its full clarity, even those things that people are less willing to hear, or that never fail to arouse protests and derision.

      Dear Brothers in the Episcopate, you are well aware that there are topics concerning the truth of faith, and especially moral doctrine that are not being adequately presented in catechesis and preaching in your Dioceses and that at times, for example, in youth ministry in the parishes or associations, are not being confronted at all, or are not being clearly addressed as the Church wishes.

      I give thanks to God it is not like this everywhere. However, perhaps those responsible for preaching fear that here and there people might drift away if they spoke too clearly.

      Yet experience generally shows that it is precisely the opposite that happens. Be under no illusion. An incomplete Catholic teaching is a contradiction in itself and cannot be fruitful in the long term. The proclamation of the Kingdom of God goes hand in hand with the need for conversion and love that encourages, that knows the way, that teaches an understanding that with God's grace even what seems impossible becomes possible. Only think how the teaching of religion, catechesis at various levels and preaching can be gradually improved, deepened and as it were completed.

      Please use zealously the Compendium and the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Ensure that your priests and catechists use these instruments, that they are explained in parishes, associations and movements, and used in families as important reading.

      In the uncertainty of this time in history and of our society, offer people the certainty of the complete faith of the Church. The clarity and beauty of the Catholic faith are such that they brighten human life even today! This is particularly true if it is presented by enthusiastic and convincing witnesses.
      The clear, public and resolute witness of Bishops, which can give a direction to all the faithful and especially the priests in your special care, and the courage to strengthen the faith through your own attitude, must be accompanied by many measures, often seemingly insignificant and unnecessary, which have a public effect.

      Something has been done to reawaken the missionary awareness of Christians in your Dioceses. In this regard I am thinking, for example, of the extraordinary city mission in Vienna, and of course, of the "Mitteleuropäischen Katholikentag" [Central European Catholic Day] that is an exceptional witness of Catholic faith linking the peoples in the face of European public opinion.

      There is still much to be done to enable the Church in Austria to carry out her missionary mandate better. In fact, it is often measures of ordinary administration such as, for example, wise and correct decisions concerning personnel, that permanently improve the situation.

      Whether it is a matter of going to Sunday Mass or receiving the Sacrament of Penance, how important example and encouraging words can frequently be!
      It is the precept of love that urges us not only to provide our neighbor with one or other social service, but also to help him or her to do the greatest good, to turn constantly to the living God, to communion with Jesus Christ, to the discovery of one's own vocation to holiness, to openness to God's will, to the joy of a life that in a certain sense already anticipates the eternal bliss.

      Dear Brothers in the Episcopate, innumerable positive situations in ecclesial life, such as, for example, the practice and rediscovery of Eucharistic adoration in parishes, the devotion of many individuals and communities to the recitation of the Rosary and the constant good collaboration between the State and the Church for the good of human beings, outline the image of the Church in Austria as well as the great cultural wealth of your Country, so blessed by the Lord in the course of Christian history.

      The spark of Christian zeal can be rekindled. Use all these gifts wherever you can, but do not be content with external piety. God is not satisfied by the fact that his people pay him lip service. God wants their hearts and gives us his grace if we do not drift away or cut ourselves off from him. I am well aware of your most dedicated efforts and those of many priests, deacons, Religious and lay people. I am certain that the Lord will accompany you and reward your fidelity and zeal with his divine blessing.

      May the "Magna Mater Austriae," the good Mother of Grace of Mariazell and the supreme Virgin of Austria, whose shrine has become so dear to me, give you and the faithful of your Country the strength and perseverance to continue with courage and confidence the great task of the authentic renewal of the living faith in your Homeland, in fidelity to the directives of the universal Church.

      Through her intercession I impart my Apostolic Blessing to all of you for your pastoral work, and to all the faithful in Austria.

      * * *


      Monday of the Second Week in Advent

      The readings today continue the theme of signs and wonders of the transformation of earth when the kingdom of God is established. Isaiah says: "Strengthen the hands that are feeble, make firm the knees that are weak".

      In the Gospel we see Jesus do just that. He cures a man that is bed-ridden. This is a sign that it is Jesus who initiates the kingdom of God in His very presence.

      This Advent we celebrate that presence of God made flesh in the person of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, born of Mary.

      We celebrate His birth, His bringing the kingdom of God, His institution of the Church, His institution of the sacraments to bring grace to us in our daily lives.

      Joyfully, we celebrate this Eucharistic feast here today where Jesus comes once again in the flesh for us to receive Him.

      Christ, truly present in this Eucharist calls each and every human pseron to be united with Him.

      How sweet and loveable is our Lord who comes to us each day on the sacred altars of His Church in the form of bread and wine.

      As we prepare to meet Him this Christmas, we also prepare to meet Him daily as He is always present in the Blessed Sacrament of the altar.

      Although we celebrate an annual feast of Christmas, we are blessed that each and every day He comes to us in the Eucharist to meet us and give us grace, hope, faith and charity, so that we can grow in love for Him and our neighbor.

      [Print and distribute]

      * * *


      CHAPTER 43: Faith Made Perfect (pages 194-198)

      Dom Hubert van Zeller explains faith, not only as our Catholic faith, or personal belief in God, but as trust and confidence in Him.

      "It is faith that begins the life of hope and love, and in this life completes it.Though love is the fulfilling of the law, it is faith that shows love how to fulfill the law. Without faith it is impossible to love." (page 198)

      Faith guides, directs and informs our minds and hearts in all things. Pray for a more perfect faith, a deeper faith. Read and study your faith in the Catechism of the Catholic Church so that you may be able to love, and love more perfectly.

      Dom Hubert van Zeller, OSB, The Choice of God. (Springfield, Illinois:
      Templegate, reprint 1963) ISBN : 87243-047-2

      * * *


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      3. Today's Lectionary Readings Text
      <http://www.nccbuscc.org/nab/120205.htm> (English)

      <http://www.alingilalyawmi.org> (Arabic)

      Biblica Online

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      Monks of Adoration:

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      5. Polish Rosary Hour by the Conventual Franciscans

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      Color Photograph of Mama Gili, Biography and Prayers

      Cause of Mama Gili as Servant of God (Part 1)

      Cause of Mama Gili as Servant of God (Part 2)

      Need a Miracle?

      Dolores Immacolata "Mama" Gili (1892-1985)


      The Mama Gili Guild was established several years ago to gather,
      collect, and publish information on Dolores Immacolata Gili (1892-
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      well as to promote her cause and toperpetuate her cult by directing
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      Rev. Dante DiGirolamo, Director
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      P. O. Box 455
      Kearny, New Jersey 07032
      Phone (973) 412-1170
      Fax (973) 412-7011

      * * *


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      10. Thomas a Kempis, Imitation of Christ. English Trans. Online

      Thomas a Kempis, De Imitatione Christi. Latin Text Online

      * * *


      When the Eucharistic host is elevated at Mass say:

      "Eternal Father, through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary,
      I offer you the crucified Body of Your dearly beloved Son, Jesus
      Christ, in reparation for all the sins committed against you and for
      the conversion and salvation of the whole world."

      When the Eucharistic chalice is elevated at Mass say:

      "Eternal Father, through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary,
      I offer you the precious Blood of Your dearly beloved Son, Jesus
      Christ, in reparation for all the sins committed against you and for
      the conversion and salvation of the whole world."

      * * *


      "during this important time, as the eve of the new millennium
      approaches unity among all Christians of the various confessions will
      increase until they reach full communion." John Paul II, Tertio
      Millennio Adveniente, 16

      "Keep close to the Mother of God as if you were the child Jesus
      clinging to her robes while walking down a dusty and busy crowded
      street and you'll always be safe."

      * * *

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