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Volume 8, Issue 79

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  • John N. Lupia
    Roman Catholic News Volume 8, Issue 79 WEDNESDAY 28 MAY 2008 * * * ... . GREGORY THE GREAT: A MAN OF GOD AT THE SERVICE OF OTHERS ... . SERVICE OF AUTHORITY
    Message 1 of 1 , May 27, 2008
      Roman Catholic News

      Volume 8, Issue 79
      WEDNESDAY 28 MAY 2008



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      IN THIS ISSUE :
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      . GREGORY THE GREAT: A MAN OF GOD AT THE SERVICE OF OTHERS
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      . SERVICE OF AUTHORITY AND OBEDIENCE
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      . OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
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      . TOMORROW'S HOMILY
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      . LECTIO DIVINA
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      . CATALOGUE OF LINKS
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      . EUCHARISTIC PRAYER IN HONOR OF THE SORROWFUL HEART OF MARY
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      . DAILY REMINDER
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      . ROMAN CATHOLIC NEWS ARCHIVES
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      . COPYRIGHT NOTICES
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      . GREGORY THE GREAT: A MAN OF GOD AT THE SERVICE OF OTHERS
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      VATICAN CITY, 28 MAY 2008 (VIS) - In his general audience today, held in St. Peter's Square, the Pope turned his attention to St. Gregory the Great, who was Bishop of Rome from 590 to 604 and whom "tradition deemed worthy of the title of 'Magnus', the Great".



      Gregory, said the Holy Father, "truly was a great Pope and a great Doctor of the Church". He was born in Rome in 540 to a rich and noble family, which stood out "for its attachment to the Christian faith and for its service to the Apostolic See".



      Benedict XVI recalled how Gregory first entered upon an administrative career, becoming prefect of Rome in 572. "However such a life cannot have satisfied him for shortly afterwards he decided to abandon all public office and withdraw to his house on the 'Clivius Scauri', beginning life as a monk". In this way "he acquired a profound knowledge of Holy Scripture and of the Fathers of the Church, which he later used in his own works".



      Gregory's skills and experience caused Pope Pelagius II to appoint him as deacon and send him as ambassador to Constantinople "to help surmount the last vestiges of the Monophysite controversy and, above all, to obtain the emperor's support in the struggle to counteract the pressure of the Lombards ". A few years later, "he was called back to Rome by the Pope who made him his secretary". When Pelagius II died, Gregory succeeded him in the See of St. Peter. It was the year 590.



      A large number of documents have been conserved from Gregory's pontificate, said the Pope, "thanks to the 'Registro' which includes around 800 of his letters. ... Among the problems afflicting Italy and Rome at that time, was one of particular weight in both civil and ecclesial life: the question of the Lombards ". Gregory established "fraternal relations with them, with a view to a future peace founded on mutual respect and the serene coexistence of Italians, Greeks and Lombards".



      Negotiations with the Lombard king, Agilulf "led to a truce which lasted for nearly three years (598-601), after which it proved possible to stipulate a more stable armistice in 603", said the Holy Father. "This positive result was possible also thanks to the contacts which the Pope had, in the meantime, established with Queen Theodelinda, a Bavarian and a Catholic. ... Little by little Theodelinda managed to lead the king to Catholicism, thus preparing the way for peace". The "beautiful" story of this queen, said the Pope, "demonstrates the importance of women in the history of the Church".



      "Pope Gregory was also active in the field of social work. With the income of the considerable patrimony which the See of Rome possessed in Italy, especially in Sicily, he bought and distributed grain, helped those in need, assisted poverty-stricken priests, monks and nuns, paid the ransom of citizens who had fallen prisoner to the Lombards, and bought armistices and truces".



      "Gregory", the Pope explained, "undertook these intense activities despite poor health which often forced him to keep his bed for days on end. ... Notwithstanding the difficult conditions in which he had to work, he managed, thanks to the holiness of his life and his abundant humanity, to conquer the trust of the faithful, achieving what, for his own time and for the future, were truly grand results".



      "He was a man immersed in God. The desire for God was perpetually alive in the depths of his soul and precisely for this reason he always remained close to others, to the needs of the people of his time. At a time of disaster - a desperate time - he managed to create peace and bring hope. This man of God shows us", Benedict XVI concluded, "where the true sources of peace are, where true hope comes from, and thus he is also a guide for us today".

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      . SERVICE OF AUTHORITY AND OBEDIENCE
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      VATICAN CITY, 28 MAY 2008 (VIS) - The Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life today published an Instruction entitled: "The Service of Authority and Obedience", presented this morning at an assembly of male and female superiors general being held at the Salesianum in Rome.



      "In the first place, the text examines the theme of religious obedience", says a communique released by the congregation, "the root of which is seen in that search for God and for His will which is particular to believers. ... Christian and religious obedience does not, then, appear simply as the implementation of ecclesiastical or religious laws and rulings, but as the momentum of a journey in search of God which involves listening to His Word and becoming aware of His design of love - the fundamental experience of Christ Who, out of love, was obedient unto His death on the cross.



      "Authority in religious life", the communique adds, "must be understood in this light, in other words, as a way to help the community (or institute) to seek and achieve the will of God. Obedience, then, is not justified on the basis of religious authority, because everyone in a religious community (first and foremost the authorities themselves) are called to obedience, Authority places itself at the service on the community so that God's will may be sought and achieved together".



      "The question of religious authority must be placed in the context of the great shared commitment to obedience, ... the theme that opens and closes this document", says the communique. The Instruction also considers "the delicate matter of 'difficult obedience', that in which what is requested of the religious is particularly hard to carry out, or in which the subject feels he sees 'things which are better and more useful for his soul than those which the superior orders him to do'. ... Drawing from a still-relevant text of Paul VI, the document also dwells upon the possibility of 'objections of conscience' in the subject who must obey".



      "The Instruction seeks to recall, above all, that obedience in religious life can give rise to difficult moments, to situations of suffering in which it is necessary to refer back to the Obedient One par excellence, Christ. ... It must, moreover, be borne in mind that authority too can be 'difficult', experiencing moments of discouragement and fatigue which can lead to resignation or inattention in exercising an appropriate guidance ... of the community".



      "The reference to conscience helps people to consider obedience not just as a passive and irresponsible execution of orders, but as a conscious shouldering of commitments ... which are a real actuation of the will of God".



      "If the document contains a serene and faith-motivated exhortation to obedience, it also offers a vast and coherent set of guidelines for the exercise of authority", such as "inviting people to listen, favouring dialogue, sharing, co-responsibility, ... and the merciful treatment of the people" entrusted to authority.



      The Instruction, the communique concludes, "gives particular resonance to the religious community as a place in which, under the guidance of the superior, a form of 'community discernment' must be exercised in decision-making. This practice, for the implementation of which important suggestions are offered, does not however eliminate the role of authority ... And it must not be forgotten that, by ancient tradition, the highest authority within religious institutes resides in the general chapter (or similar institution), which is a collegial body".

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      . OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
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      VATICAN CITY, 28 MAY 2008 ( VIS ) - The Holy Father appointed:



      - Fr. Francisco de Assis Dantas de Lucena, of the clergy of the diocese of Caico, Brazil, pastor of the parish of "Sao Francisco de Assis", as bishop of Gurarabira (area 4,553, population 420,000, Catholics 357,000, priests 38, permanent deacons 5, religious 69), Brazil. The bishop-elect was born in Jardim do Serido , Brazil in 1963 and ordained a priest in 1991.



      - Fr. Irineu Gassen O.F.M., pastor of the parish of "Sao Joao Batista" in the diocese of Caxias do Sul, Brazil, as bishop of Vacaria (area 15,932, population 206,900, Catholics 187,600, priests 52, permanent deacons 1, religious 223), Brazil. The bishop-elect was born in Santa Cruz do Sul , Brazil in 1942 and ordained a priest in 1968.

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      . TOMORROW'S HOMILY
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      Thursday of the Eighth Week in Ordinary Time

      In the Gospel of Mark we find a brilliant teaching about Christ in the story of the healing of the blind man.

      Mark begins this story by telling us the blind man’s name, Bartimaeus, and clarifies which one specifically he means by saying he is the one who is the son of Timaeus.

      For Jewish readers of Greek this explanation is redundant, since every Jew who could read Greek already knew that Bartimaeus comes from the Hebrew word “Bar” the “son of” and this is always followed by the father’s name, which in this case is Timaios here Latinized as Timaeus. So to say Bartimaeus is the son of Timaios would clearly be redundant to a Jew who could read Greek or was familiar with the Greek name.

      Now in those days the writings of the Greek philosopher Plato were well know to educated men and women. They were familiar with Plato’s writings called dialogs because they were written as dialogs between the main characters in each story. Very famous among them is the Platonic dialog called Timaeus, the identical name of Bartimaeus’ father and emphasized by the Evangelist who is making a point. St. Mark is cluing in the reader to a parallel between the blind man Bartimaeus and the Platonic dialog called Timaeus.

      Plato’s Dialog of Timaeus has him give lengthy speeches about creation made by a Creator. According to Timaeus there are two worlds, the perishable one that is always changing and the eternal one that never changes and can never perish. The physical world we know and live in was created by the Creator based on the eternal world, which served as its model. The parallel between the ancient Greek philosophy of Plato and the divine revelation that Jesus created all things could easily be made and understood. It was easy to draw the parallel between the ancient Greek Timaios and Bartimaeus to see that St. Mark was showing Jesus was the Creator who could cure Bartimaeus restoring order to his sight. In doing this St. Mark created a theology about Jesus, which the Church calls Christology, teaching that Jesus is the Creator who cured people by recreating them. In this way St. Mark took the same teaching in the Prologue of St. John’s Gospel about the Logos or Word and gave it a similar parallel in Greek philosophy.

      The Christology found in St. Mark takes the literal story of Jesus healing a blind man to a new level where it teaches us that Jesus’ power as a healer is His power as Creator. As Jesus says to Bartimaeus “your faith has saved you.” So too our faith in Jesus Christ as the omnipotent God of all eternity, Creator of heaven and earth, Savior of all people brings us grace in this life and salvation in the next.



      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News


      (Print and distribute)


      * * *

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      . LECTIO DIVINA
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      PART ONE : GOD

      Chapter IV : FAITH IN GOD TODAY (105-113)

      This chapter is divided into two parts.

      1. THE PRIMACY OF THE LOGOS (105-110)

      From the Greek philosophers, like Pythagoras, we learn that the material world has thought, mathematics, beauty and harmony from its Creator.

      "To put it more precisely, in the old Pythagorean saying about the God who practises geometry there is expressed that insight into the mathematical structure of being which learns to understand being as being-thought, as intellectually structured; there is also expressed the perception that even matter is not simply non-sense which eludes understanding, that it too bears in itself truth and comprehensibility which makes intellectual comprehension possible." (page 106)

      Joseph Ratzinger, Introduction to Christianity (New York : Herder and
      Herder, 1970)






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      . CATALOGUE OF LINKS
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      Send EWTN donations online:

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      3. Today's Lectionary Readings Text
      http://www.usccb.org/nab/readings/052808.shtml (English)


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

      Biblica Online
      <http://biblica.bsw.org>
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      4. DIVINE OFFICE TEXTS & AUDIO ONLINE:

      OFFICE OF READINGS, TEXTS

      <http://www.universalis.com/cgi-bin/display/600/USA/Readings.html>

      MORNING, EVENING & NIGHT PRAYERS, TEXTS:
      <http://www.liturgyhours.org>
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      5. ROSARY ONLINE


      Rosary in English or Latin with Gregorian Chant
      <http://www.ourcatholicfaith.org/onlinerosary.html>


      DOWNLOAD FREE SCRIPTURAL ROSARY
      <http://www.virtualrosary.org>


      Rosary Prayers in All Languages
      <http://www.rosary-center.org/howto.htm>
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      6. CHAPLET OF DIVINE MERCY ONLINE
      <http://www.markhargrave.com/chaplet.html>

      THE LITANY OF HUMILITY
      <http://www.ewtn.com/Devotionals/prayers/humility.htm>

      LITANY OF ST. MICHAEL THE ARCHANGEL (Latin & English)
      <http://www.preces-latinae.org/thesaurus/Angeli/LitSMichael.html>
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      7. THE BEATIFICATION OF MAMA GILI

      Color Photograph of Mama Gili, Biography and Prayers
      <http://holyfaceofjesus.com/dolores_immacolata.htm>

      Testimonial of Fr. Peter M. Rinaldi, SDB
      <http://holyfaceofjesus.com/testimonial_of_fr.htm>

      Testimonial of Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR
      http://www.franciscanfriars.com/fr.%20glenn%20letters/frglenn575.htm


      New Jersey State Senate Honors Mama Gili
      http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?r109:E25OC5-0009:


      Cause of Mama Gili as Servant of God (Part 1)
      <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/message/33>

      Cause of Mama Gili as Servant of God (Part 2)
      <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/message/37>

      Need a Miracle?
      <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/message/55>

      Dolores Immacolata "Mama" Gili (1892-1985)
      <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News/message/117>



      . MAMA GILI GUILD

      The Mama Gili Guild was established several years ago to gather,
      collect, and publish information on Dolores Immacolata Gili
      (1892-1985) for an investigation into her cause as a Servant of God,
      as well as to promote her cause and to perpetuate her cult by
      directing prayer groups assembled in her honor. It has continuously
      enjoyed the ecclesiastical approval of Theodore Cardinal McCarrick,
      and the Most Reverend John Joseph Myers, Archbishop of Newark, New
      Jersey.

      Get a copy of the book about Mama Gili written by her eldest daughter
      Claudia (now deceased). Claudia Gili Phaneuf, Dolores Immacolata Gili:
      Mama Gili (Mama Gili Guild, 1989). The 2005 Edition is available from
      the Mama Gili Guild by contacting Fr. Dante: address and phone number
      below. The cost of the book, last time I checked, was $5.00 plus
      postage.

      Call or write today regarding favors granted through the intercession
      of Dolores Immacolata "Mama" Gili," or, for more information about the
      book and the cause of her investigation for canonization to:

      Rev. Dante DiGirolamo, Director
      Mama Gili Guild
      P. O. Box 455
      Kearny, New Jersey 07032
      Phone (973) 412-1170
      Fax (973) 412-7011
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      8. ABBAYE SAINT-JOSEPH DE CLAIRVAL

      The Benedictine monks of Abbaye Saint-Joseph de Clairval mail a free
      monthly newsletter to anyone who requests it. Also free of charge are:
      the tract about the divinity of Jesus Christ; tract about the Truths
      of the Catholic Religion; scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, with
      explanatory notice; the promises of the Sacred Heart; the mysteries of
      the Rosary.

      Abbey of Saint-Joseph de Clairval
      21150 FLAVIGNY-SUR-OZERAIN
      France

      Phone.: 03 80 96 22 31
      Fax: 03 80 96 25 29
      Email: <englishspoken@c...> or
      <stjoseph.flavigny@l...>

      <http://www.clairval.com>
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      9. Thomas a Kempis, Imitation of Christ. English Trans. Online

      <http://www.ccel.org/ccel/kempis/imitation.html>

      Thomas a Kempis, De Imitatione Christi. Latin Text Online

      <http://www.thelatinlibrary.com/kempis.html>
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      10. Catechism of the Catholic Church online

      <http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text/entiretoc1.htm>
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      . EUCHARISTIC PRAYER IN HONOR OF THE SORROWFUL HEART OF MARY

      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."
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      . DAILY REMINDER
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      "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 will always be safe."
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      . ROMAN CATHOLIC NEWS ARCHIVES
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