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Volume 13, Issue 116

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  • John
    Volume 13, Issue 116 MONDAY JULY 8 2013 THE YEAR OF FAITH Nothing will be hidden from you if you have perfect faith and love for Jesus Christ, since these are
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 28, 2013
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      Volume 13, Issue 116

      MONDAY JULY 8 2013

      THE YEAR OF FAITH


      Nothing will be hidden from you
      if you have perfect faith and love for Jesus Christ,
      since these are the beginning and end of life.
      Faith, indeed, is the beginning and love is the end.

      Clothe yourself with gentleness,
      and be renewed in faith,
      which is the flesh of the Lord,
      and in love, which is the blood of Jesus Christ.
      Faith, indeed, is the beginning and love is the end.


      * * *


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      IN THIS ISSUE :
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      . THE POPE IN LAMPEDUSA: MAY THE VEHICLES OF HOPE NEVER AGAIN BECOME VEHICLES OF DEATH
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      . THE POPE TO SEMINARIANS, NOVICES AND THOSE DISCERNING THIEIR VOCATIONS: OUR MISSION IS TO ENCOUNTER THE LORD WHO CONSOLES AND TO CONSOLE THE PEOPLE OF GOD
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      . ANGELUS: JESUS IS NOT AN ISOLATED MISSIONARY
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      . AUDIENCE WITH PRESIDENT OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO
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      .CARDINAL VAN THUAN: A WITNESS OF HOPE
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      . AUDIENCES
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      . OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
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      . SUMMARY OF THE ENCYCLICAL “LUMEN FIDEI”
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      . PRAYER FOR POPE FRANCIS
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      . PRAYER FOR BENEDICT XVI
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      . FOLLOW THE EDITOR ON TWITTER
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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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      . THE POPE IN LAMPEDUSA: MAY THE VEHICLES OF HOPE NEVER AGAIN BECOME VEHICLES OF DEATH
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      Vatican City, 6 July 2013 (VIS) – This morning Pope Francis visited the Italian island of Lampedusa, for some years now an entry point for many immigrants, a significant number of whom have lost their lives in the surrounding seas.

      The pope left Rome's Ciampino military airport at 8 a.m. arriving at the island at 9.15 a.m., where he was greeted by Archbishop Francesco Montenegro of Agrigento and by the mayor of Lampedusa, Giuseppina Nicolini. He proceeded to Cala Pisana by car, where he boarded a boat in order to arrive at the Port of Lampedusa by water. The Holy Father was accompanied by fishermen in their boats. During the journey he committed a wreath to the sea in memory of those immigrants who have lost their lives attempting to cross the Mediterranean. The Pope's arrival at the port at Punta Favarolo was awaited by a group of around fifty immigrants, many of whom were Muslims, living in the reception shelters in Lampedusa. He greeted them one by one and then departed by car for the nearby “Arena” sports field in the Salinas quarter, where at 10.30 a.m. he celebrated Mass.

      The form of the Mass was that “for the forgiveness of sins”, included in the Missal among the masses for particular needs. The Liturgy of the Word consisted of readings on the story of Cain and Abel, the massacre of the innocents, and the Miserere psalm, emphasizing the penitential aspect of the Liturgy. The Holy Father used a crosier and chalice from the parish of Lampedusa made of wood from boats by which immigrants reached the island. Both were the work of an artisan from Lampedusa, who had offered assistance to the immigrants during the emergencies.

      Given below are extensive extracts from the Pope's homily:

      “Immigrants dying at sea, in boats which were vehicles of hope and became vehicles of death. Since I first heard of this tragedy a few weeks ago, and realised that it happens too frequently, it has constantly come back to me like a painful thorn in my heart. So, I felt that I had to come here today, to pray and to offer a sign of my closeness, but also to challenge our consciences lest this tragedy be repeated. Please, let it not be repeated!”

      The Pope thanked the inhabitants and the authorities of Lampedusa for their solidarity with the immigrants and greeted the Muslims among them who today begin the fast of Ramadan, and added, “The Church is at your side as you seek a more dignified life for yourselves and your families”.

      “This morning, in the light of God's Word which has just been proclaimed, I wish to offer some thoughts to challenge people's consciences, to lead them to reflection and a concrete change of heart”.

      “'Adam, where are you?' This is the first question God poses to man after his sin. Adam lost his bearings, his place in creation because he thought he could be powerful, able to control everything, to be God. Harmony was lost, man errs and this error occurs over and over again also in relationships with others. The 'other' who is no longer a brother or sister to be loved, but simply another person who disturbs our lives and our comfort. God asks a second question, 'Cain, where is your brother?'. The illusion of being powerful, of being as great as God, even of being God Himself, leads to a whole series of errors, a chain of death, even to the spilling of a brother's blood! God's two questions echo even today, as forcefully as ever. How many of us, myself included, have lost our bearings; we are no longer attentive to the world in which we live … we do not take care of that which God created for all of us, and we are no longer capable even of looking after each other. And when humanity as a whole loses its bearings, it results in tragedies like the one we have witnessed.

      “'Where is your brother?' His blood cries out to me, says the Lord. This is not a question directed to others, it is a question directed to me, to you, to each of us. These brothers and sisters of ours were trying to escape difficult situations to find some serenity and peace; they sought a better place for themselves and their families, but instead they found only death. How often do such people fail to find understanding, fail to find acceptance, fail to find solidarity. And their cry rises up to God! I recently listened to one of these brothers of ours. Before arriving here, he and the others were at the mercy of traffickers, people who exploit the poverty of others, people who live off the misery of others. How much these people have suffered! Some of them never made it here.

      “'Where is your brother?' Who is responsible for this blood? In Spanish literature there is a work by Lope de Vega which narrates how the inhabitants of the city of Fuente Ovejuna kill their tyrannical governor, and they do so in a way that no-one knows who carried out the execution. And when the king's judge asks, 'Who killed the governor?', they all answer, “Fuente Ovejuna, my lord”. Everybody and nobody! Today too, this question emerges forcefully: who is responsible for the blood of these, our brothers and sisters? Nobody! That is our answer: it isn't me, I don't have anything to do with it; it must be someone else, but certainly not me. Yet God is asking each of us: 'Where is the blood of your brother which cries out to me?'. Today no-one in our world feels responsible; we have lost a sense of responsibility for our brothers and sisters; we have fallen into the hypocrisy of the priest and the Levite whom Jesus described in the parable of the Good Samaritan: we see our brother half dead on the side of the road, perhaps we say to ourselves: 'poor soul...!', and then go on our way; it's not our responsibility, and with that we feel reassured. The culture of comfort, which makes us think only of ourselves, makes us insensitive to the cries of other people, makes us live in soap bubbles which, however lovely, are insubstantial; they offer a fleeting and empty illusion which results in indifference to others; indeed, it even leads to the globalisation of indifference. We have become used to the suffering of others, it doesn't affect me; it doesn't concern me; it is none of my business. The globalisation of indifference makes us all 'unnamed', responsible yet nameless and faceless.

      “'Adam, where are you?' 'Where is your brother?' These are the two questions which God asks at the dawn of human history, and which he also asks each man and woman in our own day, which he also asks us. But I would like us to ask a third question: 'Has any one of us wept because of this situation and others like it?' Has any one of us grieved for the death of these brothers and sisters? Has any one of us wept for these persons who were on the boat? For the young mothers carrying their babies? For these men who were looking for a means of supporting their families? We are a society which has forgotten how to weep, how to experience compassion – 'suffering with' others: the globalization of indifference has taken from us the ability to weep! In the Gospel we have heard the crying, the wailing, the great lamentation: 'Rachel weeps for her children… because they are no more'. Herod sowed death to protect his own comfort, his own soap bubble. And so it continues… Let us ask the Lord to remove the part of Herod that lurks in our hearts; let us ask the Lord for the grace to weep over our indifference, to weep over the cruelty of our world, of our own hearts, and of all those who in anonymity make social and economic decisions which open the door to tragic situations like this.

      “In this liturgy, a penitential liturgy, we beg forgiveness for our indifference to so many of our brothers and sisters. Father, we ask your pardon for those who are complacent and closed amid comforts which have deadened their hearts; we beg your forgiveness for those who by their decisions on the global level have created situations that lead to these tragedies”.



      * * *


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      . THE POPE TO SEMINARIANS, NOVICES AND THOSE DISCERNING THIEIR VOCATIONS: OUR MISSION IS TO ENCOUNTER THE LORD WHO CONSOLES AND TO CONSOLE THE PEOPLE OF GOD
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      Vatican City, 7 July 2013 (VIS) – The joy of consolation, the Cross and prayer were the reference points in Christian mission proposed by Pope Francis to the young seminarians, novices and all those who participated in Mass celebrated this morning in St. Peter's Basilica. A broad summary of the Holy Father's homily is given below:

      “You are seminarians, novices, young people on a vocational journey, from every part of the world. You represent the Church’s youth! If the Church is the Bride of Christ, you in a certain sense represent the moment of betrothal, the Spring of vocation, the season of discovery … in which foundations are laid for the future. … Today the word of God speaks to us of mission. … What are the reference points of Christian mission? The readings we have heard suggest three: the joy of consolation, the Cross and prayer.

      “The first element: the joy of consolation. The prophet Isaiah is addressing a people that has been through a dark period of exile, a very difficult trial. But now the time of consolation has come for Jerusalem; sadness and fear must give way to joy. ... What is the reason for this invitation to joy? Because the Lord is going to pour out over the Holy City and its inhabitants a 'cascade' of consolation, a veritable overflow of consolation, a cascade of maternal tenderness: 'You shall be carried upon her hip and dandled upon her knees'. As when a mother takes her child upon her knee and caresses him or her: so the Lord will do and does with us. This is the cascade of tenderness which gives us much consolation. … Every Christian, and especially you and I, is called to be a bearer of this message of hope that gives serenity and joy: God’s consolation, his tenderness towards all. But if we first experience the joy of being consoled by him, of being loved by him, then we can bring that joy to others. This is important if our mission is to be fruitful: to feel God’s consolation and to pass it on to others! I have occasionally met consecrated persons who are afraid of the consolations of God, and … the poor things, they were tormented, because they are afraid of this divine tenderness. But do not be afraid. Do not be afraid of the consolations of the Lord. We must find the Lord who consoles us and go to console the people of God. This is the mission. People today certainly need words, but most of all they need us to bear witness to the mercy and tenderness of the Lord, which warms the heart, rekindles hope, and attracts people towards the good. What a joy it is to bring God’s consolation to others!

      “The second reference point of mission is the Cross of Christ. Saint Paul, writing to the Galatians, says: 'Far be it from me to glory except in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ'. … In his ministry Paul experienced suffering, weakness and defeat, but also joy and consolation. This is the Paschal mystery of Jesus: the mystery of death and resurrection. ... In the hour of darkness, in the hour of trial, the dawn of light and salvation is already present and operative. The Paschal mystery is the beating heart of the Church’s mission! And if we remain within this mystery, we are sheltered both from a worldly and triumphalistic view of mission and from the discouragement that can result from trials and failures. Pastoral fruitfulness, the fruitfulness of the Gospel proclamation is measured neither by success nor by failure according to the criteria of human evaluation, but by conforming to the logic of the Cross of Jesus, which is the logic of stepping outside oneself and offering oneself, the logic of love. It is the Cross – always the Cross that is present with Christ, because at times we are offered the Cross without Christ: this has no purpose! … It is from the Cross, the supreme act of mercy and love, that we are reborn as a 'new creation'.

      “Finally the third element: prayer. In the Gospel we heard: 'Pray therefore the Lord of the harvest, to send out labourers into his harvest'. The labourers for the harvest are not chosen through advertising campaigns or appeals of service and generosity, but they are 'chosen' and 'sent' by God. It is He who chooses, it is He who sends ... it is He who gives the mission. For this, prayer is important. The Church, as Benedict XVI has often reiterated, is not ours, but God’s; and how many times do we, consecrated men and women, think that the Church is ours! We make of it… something that we invent in our minds. But it is not ours!, it is God’s. The field to be cultivated is His. The mission is grace. And if the Apostle is born of prayer, he finds in prayer the light and strength of his action”.

      “Dear seminarians, dear novices, dear young people discerning your vocations. … Listen well: 'evangelization is done on one’s knees'. Always be men and women of prayer! Without a constant relationship with God, the mission becomes a job. But for what do you work? As a tailor, a cook, a priest – is your job being a priest, being a sister? No. It is not a job, but rather something else. The risk of activism, of relying too much on structures, is an ever-present danger. If we look towards Jesus, we see that prior to any important decision or event he recollected himself in intense and prolonged prayer. Let us cultivate the contemplative dimension, even amid the whirlwind of more urgent and heavy duties. And the more the mission calls you to go out to the margins of existence, let your heart be the more closely united to Christ’s heart, full of mercy and love. Herein lies the secret of pastoral fruitfulness, of the fruitfulness of a disciple of the Lord!

      “Jesus sends his followers out with no 'purse, no bag, no sandals'. The spread of the Gospel is not guaranteed by the number of persons, nor by the prestige of the institution, nor by the quantity of available resources. What counts is being permeated by the love of Christ, allowing oneself be led by the Holy Spirit and to graft one’s own life onto the tree of life, which is the Lord’s Cross.

      “Dear friends, with great confidence I entrust you to the intercession of Mary Most Holy. She is the Mother who helps us to take life decisions freely and without fear. May she help you to bear witness to the joy of God’s consolation, without being afraid of joy, she will help you to conform yourselves to the logic of love of the Cross, to grow in ever deeper union with the Lord in prayer. Then your lives will be rich and fruitful!”


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      . ANGELUS: JESUS IS NOT AN ISOLATED MISSIONARY
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      Vatican City, 8 July 2013 (VIS) – At midday, following the Holy Mass celebrated on the Day for seminarians, novices and those discerning their vocations, in the context of the Year of Faith, Pope Francis appeared at the window of his study to pray the Angelus with the faithful and pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square.

      The Bishop of Rome appealed to all those present to pray for the participants in this Day, “that their love for Christ might mature more and more in their lives and that they might become true missionaries of God's Kingdom”, and then went on to comment on this Sunday's gospel, relating it to the call to the vocation.

      “Jesus is not an isolated missionary”, he said; “he does not want to fulfill his mission alone, but involves his disciples. Today we see that, in addition to the Twelve Apostles, He calls seventy-two others, and sends them into the villages, two by two, to announce that the Kingdom of God is near. This is very beautiful! Jesus does not want to act alone, He has come to bring to the world the love of God and wants to spread that love with communion and fraternity. For this reason, he immediately forms a community of disciples, a missionary community, and trains them for the mission”.

      “Beware, however: the purpose is not to socialize, to spend time together – no, the purpose is to proclaim the Kingdom of God, and this is urgent! There is no time to waste in small talk, no need to wait for the consent of all – it is necessary to go out and proclaim. The peace of Christ is to be brought to everyone, and if some do not welcome it, then you go on. Healing is to be brought to the sick, as God wishes to heal man from all evil. How many missionaries do this! They sow life, health, comfort in the peripheries of the world”.

      “These seventy-two disciples, whom Jesus sent ahead of him, who are they? Whom do they represent? If the Twelve are the Apostles, and therefore also represent the Bishops, their successors, these may represent seventy-two other ordained ministers – priests and deacons – but in a wider sense we can think of other ministries in the Church, catechists and lay faithful who engage in parish missions, those who work with the sick, with the various forms of discomfort and alienation, but always as missionaries of the Gospel, with the urgency of the Kingdom that is at hand. Everyone must become missionaries, everyone can hear Jesus' call and go on to proclaim His kingdom!

      “The Gospel says that those seventy-two returned from their mission full of joy, because they had experienced the power of the Name of Christ against evil. … We should not boast as if we were the protagonists: the protagonist is the Lord and His grace. Our joy is only this: in being His disciples, His friends. … Do not be afraid of being joyful! … It is the joy that the Lord gives us when we let Him enter into our lives and invite us to go forth into the peripheries of life and announce the Gospel, with joy and courage!”

      After the Angelus, Pope Francis mentioned that two days ago his first encyclical, “Lumen Fidei” (On the Light of Faith) was published. Pope Benedict XVI had started this encyclical for the Year of Faith and to follow the previous encyclicals dedicated to love and hope. “I picked up this fine project and completed it. I offer it with joy to the whole People of God: indeed, today more than ever before, we need to return to the essentials of the Christian faith, to deepen it, and to measure current issues by it. I think that this encyclical, at least in some parts, can also be useful to those who are searching for God and for the meaning of life. I entrust it to the hands of Mary, the perfect icon of faith, that it may bring the fruits the Lord wishes”.

      The Holy Father went on to greet the young people of the diocese of Rome who are preparing to go to Rio de Janeiro to participate in World Youth Day. “Dear young people, I too am preparing! Let us walk together towards this great celebration of faith! May Our Lady accompany us”.

      Finally, he greeted the Franciscan Sisters and the Rosminian Angeline Sisters, who are holding their General Chapters, and the leaders of the Community of Sant'Egidio who have come to Rome from various countries to attend a training course.

      * * *


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      .AUDIENCE WITH PRESIDENT OF TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO
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      Vatican City, 6 July 2013 (VIS) – This morning in the Vatican Apostolic Palace, the Holy Father received in audience the president of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Anthony Thomas Aquinas Carmona. The president subsequently went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B., accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

      During the course of the colloquial discussions, several topics were covered including the contribution the Catholic Church offers to the population, especially in the fields of education, health and assistance to the needy and vulnerable. The Parties expressed their commitment to fruitful collaboration in supporting the young in the fight against crime and violence.

      Finally, the focus turned to important themes such as the full formation of the person and the protection of the family.


      * * *


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      . CARDINAL VAN THUAN: A WITNESS OF HOPE
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      Vatican City, 6 July 2013 (VIS) - “A witness of hope” was how Pope Francis defined the late Cardinal Francois-Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan, who had been the president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, and for whom the diocesan phase of the beatification process has now come to an end.

      This morning in the Vatican Apostolic Palace the Holy Father greeted the participants in the closing session of this phase and thanked Waldery Hilgeman, postulator of the cause of Cardinal Van Thuan's beatification, emphasizing that “many people can testify to their edification through meeting the Servant of God Francois-Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan in various stages of his life”.

      “The experience shows that his renowned holiness was transmitted through the testimony of the many people who met him and who cherish within their hearts his gentle smile and the greatness of his sensibility. Many encountered him through his writings, simple yet profound, which demonstrate his priestly heart, deeply united with He who called him to be the minister of His mercy and His love. Many people have written to tell of grace received and signs attributed to the intercession of this venerated Brother, son of the east, who has completed his earthly journey in the service of Peter's Successor.

      “We entrust the furthering of his cause, and all the others currently in process, to the intercession of the Virgin Mary. May Our Lady help us to live ever more the beauty and joy of communion with Christ”, the Pope concluded.

      * * *


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      . AUDIENCES
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      On Saturday 6 July the Holy Father received in audience Cardinal Achille Silvestri, prefect emeritus of the Congregation for the Eastern Churches.


      * * *


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      .OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
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      On Saturday 6 July the Holy Father appointed Archbishop George Kocherry as apostolic nuncio to Bangladesh. Archbishop Kocherry, titular of Othona, was previously apostolic nuncio to Zimbabwe.


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      . SUMMARY OF THE ENCYCLICAL “LUMEN FIDEI”
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      Vatican City, 5 July 2013 (VIS) – Published below is a broad summary of Pope Francis' first encyclical, “Lumen Fidei”, published today, 5 July 2013 and signed on 29 June of the same year.

      Lumen fidei – The light of faith (LF) is the first Encyclical signed by Pope Francis. Divided into four chapters, plus an introduction and a conclusion, the Pontiff explains that the Letter supplements Benedict XVI’s Encyclicals on charity and hope, and takes up the “fine work” carried out by the Pope Emeritus, who had already “almost completed” the Encyclical on faith. The Holy Father has now added “further contributions” to this existing “first draft”.

      The introduction (nos. 1-7) of LF illustrates the motivations at the basis of the document: firstly, it reiterates the characteristics of light typical of faith, able to illuminate all man’s existence, to assist him in distinguishing good from evil, especially in this modern age in which belief is opposed to searching and faith is regarded as an illusion, a leap into the void that impedes man’s freedom. Secondly, LF – precisely in this Year of Faith, 50 years following the Second Vatican Council, a “Council on faith” – seeks to reinvigorate the perception of the breadth of the horizons faith opens so that it might be confessed in unity and integrity. Indeed, faith is not a condition to be taken for granted, but rather a gift from God, to be nurtured and reinforced. “Who believes, sees”, the Pope writes, since the light of faith comes from God and is able to illuminate all aspects of man’s existence: it proceeds from the past, from the memory of Jesus’ life, but also comes from the future as it opens up vast horizons.

      Chapter One (nos. 8-22): We have believed in love (1 John 4: 16). Referring to the biblical figure of Abraham, in this chapter faith is explained as “listening” to the word of God, the “call” to come out from the isolated self in order to open oneself to a new life and the “promise” of the future, which makes possible the continuity of our path through time, linked so closely to hope. Faith also has a connotation of “paternity”, because the God who calls us is not a stranger, but is God the Father, the wellspring of the goodness that is at the origin of and sustains everything. In the history of Israel, faith is opposed to idolatry, which man is broken down in the multiplicity of his desires and “his life story disintegrates into a myriad of unconnected instants”, denying him the time to await the fulfilment of the promise. On the contrary, faith is trust in God’s merciful love, which always welcomes and forgives, and which straightens “the crooked lines of our history”; it is the willingness to allow oneself to be transformed anew by “God’s free gift, which calls for humility and the courage to trust and to entrust; it enables us to see the luminous path leading to the encounter of God and humanity, the history of salvation” (no. 14). And herein lies the “paradox” of faith: constantly turning to the Lord gives humanity stability, liberating us from idols.

      LF then turns to the figure of Jesus, the mediator who opens to us to a truth greater than ourselves, the manifestation of God’s love that is the foundation of faith: “in contemplating Jesus’ death … faith grows stronger”, as in this He reveals His unshakeable love for mankind. His resurrection renders Christ a “trustworthy witness”, “deserving of faith”, through Whom God works truly throughout history, determining its final destiny. But there is a “decisive aspect” of faith in Jesus: “participation in His way of seeing”. Faith, indeed, looks not only to Jesus but also from Jesus’ point of view, with His eyes. The Pope uses an analogy to explain that, just as how in our daily lives we place our trust in “others who know better than we do” – the architect, the pharmacist, the lawyer – also for faith we need someone who is reliable and expert “where God is concerned” and Jesus is “the one who makes God known to us”. Therefore, we believe Jesus when we accept his Word, and we believe in Jesus when we welcome Him in our life and entrust ourselves to Him. Indeed, his incarnation ensures that faith does not separate us from reality, but rather helps us to grasp its deepest meaning. Thanks to faith, man saves himself, as he opens himself to a Love that precedes and transforms him from within. And this is the true action of the Holy Spirit: “The Christian can see with the eyes of Jesus and share in His mind, His filial disposition, because he or she shares in his love, which is the Spirit” (no.21). Without the presence of the Spirit it is impossible to confess the Lord. Therefore “the life of the believer becomes an ecclesial existence”, since faith is confessed within the body of the Church, as the “concrete communion of believers”. Christians are “one” without losing their individuality and in the service of others they come into their own. Thus, “faith is not a private matter, a completely individualistic notion or a personal opinion”, but rather “it comes from hearing, and is meant to find expression in words and to be proclaimed”.

      Chapter Two (nos. 23-36): Unless you believe, you will not understand (Is 7:9). The Pope shows the close link between faith and truth, the reliable truth of God, His faithful presence throughout history. “Faith without truth does not save”, writes the Pope; “It remains a beautiful story, the projection of our deep yearning for happiness”. And nowadays, given “the crisis of truth in our age”, it is more necessary than ever before to recall this link, as contemporary culture tends to accept only the truth of technology, what man manages to build and measure through science, truth that “works”, or rather the single truths valid only for the individual and not in the service of the common good. Today we regard with suspicion the “Truth itself, the truth which would comprehensively explain our life as individuals and in society”, as it is erroneously associated with the truths claimed by twentieth-century forms of totalitarianism. However, this leads to a “massive amnesia in our contemporary world” which – to the advantage of relativism and in fear of fanaticism – forgets this question of truth, of the origin of all – the question of God. LF then underlines the link between faith and love, understood not as “an ephemeral emotion”, but as God’s great love which transforms us within and grants us new eyes with which we may see reality. If, therefore, faith is linked to truth and love, then “love and truth are inseparable”, because only true love withstands the test of time and becomes the source of knowledge. And since the knowledge of faith is born of God’s faithful love, “truth and fidelity go together”. The truth that discloses faith is a truth centred on the encounter with Christ incarnate, Who, coming among us, has touched us and granted us His grace, transforming our hearts.

      At this point, the Pope begins a broad reflection on the “dialogue between faith and reason”, on the truth in today’s world, in which it is often reduced to a “subjective authenticity”, as common truth inspires fear, and is often identified with the intransigent demands of totalitarianism. Instead, if the truth is that of God’s love, then it is not imposed violently and does not crush the individual. Therefore, faith is not intransigent, and the believer is not arrogant. On the contrary, faith renders the believer humble and leads to co-existence with and respect for others. From this, it follows that faith lead to dialogue in all fields: in that of science, as it reawakens the critical sense and broadens the horizons of reason, inviting us to behold Creation with wonder; in the interreligious context, in which Christianity offers its own contribution; in dialogue with non-believers who ceaselessly search, who “strive to act as if God existed”, because “God is light and can be find also by those who seek him with a sincere heart”. “Anyone who sets off on the path of doing good to others is already drawing near to God”, the Pope emphasizes. Finally, LF speaks about theology and confirms that it is impossible without faith, since God is not a simple “object” but rather the Subject who makes Himself known. Theology is participation in the knowledge that God has of Himself; as a consequence theology must be placed at the service of Christian faith and the ecclesial Magisterium is not a limit to theological freedom, but rather one of its constitutive elements as it ensures contact with its original source, the Word of Christ.

      Chapter Three (nos. 37- 49): I delivered to you what I also received (1 Cor 15:3). This chapter focuses entirely on the importance of evangelization: he who has opened himself to God’s love cannot keep this gift for himself, writes the Pope. The light of Jesus shines on the face of Christians and spreads in this way, is transmitted by contact like a flame that ignites from another, and passes from generation to generation, through the uninterrupted chain of witnesses to the faith. This leads to a link between faith and memory as God’s love keeps all times united, making us Christ’s contemporaries. Furthermore, it is “impossible to believe on our own”, because faith is not “an individual decision”, but rather opens “I” to “we” and always occurs “within the community of the Church”. Therefore, “those who believe are never alone”, as he discovers that the spaces of the self enlarge and generate new relations that enrich life.

      There is, however, “a special means” by which faith may be transmitted: the Sacraments, in which an “incarnate memory” is communicated. The Pope first mentions Baptism – both of children and adults, in the form of the catechumenate – which reminds us that faith is not the work of an isolated individual, an act that may be carried out alone, but instead must be received, in ecclesial communion. “No-one baptizes himself”, explains LF. Furthermore, since the baptized child cannot confess the faith himself but must instead be supported by parents and godparents, the “cooperation between Church and family” is important. Secondly, the Encyclical refers to the Eucharist, “precious nourishment for faith”, an “act of remembrance, a making present of the mystery”, which “leads from the visible world to the invisible”, teaching us to experience the depth of reality. The Pope then considers the confession of the faith, the Creed, in which the believer not only confesses faith but is involved in the truth that he confesses; prayer, Our Father, by which the Christian learns to see through Christ’s eyes; the Decalogue, understood not as “a set of negative commands” but rather as “concrete directions” to enter into dialogue with God, “to be embraced by His mercy”, the “path of gratitude” towards the fullness of communion with God. Finally, the Pope underlines the there is one faith because of the “oneness of the God who is known and confessed”, because it is directed towards the one Lord, who grants us “a common gaze” and “is shared by the whole Church, which is one body and one Spirit”. Therefore, given that there is one faith alone, it follows that is must be confessed in all its purity and integrity: “the unity of faith is the unity of the Church”; to subtract something from faith is to subtract something from the veracity of communion. Furthermore, since the unity of faith is that of a living organism, it is able to assimilate all it encounters, demonstrating itself to be universal, catholic, illuminating and able to lead all the cosmos and all history to its finest expression. This unity is guaranteed by the apostolic succession.

      Fourth chapter (nos. 50-60): God prepares a city for them (Heb 11:16) This chapter explains the link between faith and the common good, which leads to the creation of a place in which men and women may live together with others. Faith, which is born of the love of God, strengthens the bonds of humanity and places itself at the service of justice, rights and peace. This is why it does not distance itself from the world and is not unrelated to the real commitments of contemporary man. On the contrary, without the love of God in which we can place our trust, the bonds between people would be based only on utility, interests and fear. Instead faith grasps the deepest foundation of human relationships, their definitive destiny in God, and places them at the service of the common good. Faith “is for all, it is a common good”; its purpose is not merely to build the hereafter but to help in edifying our societies in order that they may proceed together towards a future of hope.
      The Encyclical then considers those areas illuminated by faith: first and foremost, the family based on marriage, understood as a stable union between man and woman. This is born of the recognition and acceptance of the goodness of sexual differentiation and, based on love in Christ, promises “a love for ever” and recognises love as the creator that leads to the begetting of children. Then, youth; here the Pope cites the World Youth Days, in which young people demonstrate “the joy of faith” and their commitment to live faith solidly and generously. “Young people want to live life to the fullest”, writes the Pope. “Encountering Christ … enlarges the horizons of existence, gives it a firm hope which will not disappoint. Faith is no refuge for the fainthearted, but something which enhances our lives”. And again, in all social relations, by making us children of God, indeed, faith gives new meaning to universal brotherhood, which is not merely equality, but rather the common experience of God’s paternity, the comprehension of the unique dignity of each person. A further area is that of nature: faith helps us to respect it, to “find models of development which are based not simply on utility and profit, but consider creation as a gift”. It teaches us to find just forms of government, in which authority comes from God and which serve the common good; it offers us the possibility of forgiveness that leads us to overcome all conflict. “When faith is weakened, the foundations of humanity also risk being weakened”, writes the Pope, and if we remove faith in God from our cities, we will lose our mutual trust and be united only by fear. Therefore we must not be ashamed to publicly confess God, because faith illuminates social life. Another area illuminated by faith is that of suffering and death: Christians are aware that suffering cannot be eliminated, but it may be given meaning; it can be entrusted to the hands of God who never abandons us and therefore become “a moment of growth in faith”. To he who suffers, God does not give reasons to explain everything, but rather offers His presence that accompanies us, that opens up a threshold of light in the shadows. In this sense, faith is linked to hope. And here the Pope makes an appeal: “Let us refuse to be robbed of hope, or to allow our hope to be dimmed by facile answers and solutions which block our progress”.

      Conclusion (nos. 58-60): Blessed are you who believed (Luke 1,45) At the end of LF, the Pope invites us to look to Mary, “perfect icon” of faith who, as the Mother of Jesus, conceived “faith and joy”. The Pope elevates his prayer to Maria that she might assist man in his faith, to remind us those who believe are never alone and to teach us to see through Jesus’ eyes.


      * * *



      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      . PRAYER FOR POPE FRANCIS
      ---------------------------------------------------------------




      Lord, look kindly on our Holy Father Pope Francis and strengthen him
      with all the graces necessary to perform his duties as Your Vicar here on earth.
      Guard and protect him from all evil. Grant him excellent health of mind and
      body. Empower him to transform the world through Your most Holy Being. Empower
      him to convert sinners and warm the chilled heart that has grown cold. Bless the
      Holy See over which he presides in Your place so that they may all be one as You
      prayed at Your Last Supper. Enkindle the fire of Your love in him and in all the
      faithful so that together we may work towards fulfilling Your Most Holy Will for
      us and the whole world. Amen.

      (permission granted to everyone to copy and distribute this prayer for Pope
      Francis)


      * * *


      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      . PRAYER FOR BENEDICT XVI
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      The following prayer is recommended to be said each day for Benedict XVI
      during "The Year of Faith" and for the remainder of his life as a the former
      Vicar of Christ.

      PRAYER FOR BENEDICT XVI

      Lord, look kindly on Benedict XVI and strengthen him with all the graces
      necessary to perform his duties here on earth. Guard and protect him from all
      evil. Grant him excellent health of mind and body. Empower him to transform the
      world through Your most Holy Being. Empower him to convert sinners and warm the
      chilled heart that has grown cold. Enkindle the fire of Your love in him and in
      all the faithful so that together we may work towards fulfilling Your Most Holy
      Will for us and the whole world. Amen.


      (permission granted to everyone to copy and distribute this prayer for Benedict
      XVI)


      * * *


      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      . FOLLOW THE EDITOR ON TWITTER
      ---------------------------------------------------------------



      https://twitter.com/JohnNLupia

      @JohnNLupia


      * * *


      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      . CATALOGUE OF LINKS
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      1. HOW TO USE LINKS -- RealPlayer

      Roman Catholic News is very happy to announce new exciting links
      available to you, our fine subscribers. Some links require Realplayer
      a software program that allows you to see live television and hear
      audio recordings as copy go to EWTN Live TV and Radio on the link
      below and scroll down until you find the Download Free RealPlayer link
      and click it on.
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      2. Live EWTN TV and Radio

      http://www.ewtn.com/audiovideo/index.asp

      CONTAINS:

      Live EWTN TV - English EWTN AM/FM RADIO
      Live EWTN TV - Spanish Catholic World Today Radio
      Today's Homily (Video) Audio of Todays Homily
      Pope's Wednesday Audience Audio Radio Catolica Mundial
      EWTN's The World Over Mother Angelica Live Video
      Audio Library Life On The Rock (Video)
      The Journey Home (Video) EWTN Religious Catalogue

      Send EWTN donations online:

      https://www.ewtn.com/VSDonationML/?lang=English
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      3. Today's Lectionary Readings
      http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/070813.cfm


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

      Biblica Online
      http://biblica.bsw.org
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      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

      Also available from the Franciscan Fathers- Custody of the Holy Land
      http://www.custodia.org

      or

      http://www.custodia.org/default.asp?id=5186
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      5. ROSARY ONLINE

      The Rosary in the Holy Land with Fr. Mitch Pacwa

      http://www.ewtn.com/vondemand/audio/seriessearchprog.asp?seriesID=503&T1=pacwa

      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
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      6. PROPOSAL FOR THE NEW 5 MYSTERIES OF MERCY OF THE ROSARY



      http://www.reginacaelipress.com/home/the-5-mysteries-of-mercy

      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------


      7. 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

      CHAPLET OF ST. MICHAEL THE ARCHANGEL
      http://www.ewtn.com/library/prayer/mikechap.txt

      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      8. 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,
      CFRhttp://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


      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      9. NEW BOOK ON THE SHROUD OF TURIN


      http://www.reginacaelipress.com


      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      10. 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: or


      http://www.clairval.com
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      11. 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
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      12. Catechism of the Catholic Church online

      http://www.usccb.org/catechism/text
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      13. Missionaries of the Poor

      http://www.missionariesofthepoor.org/

      Fr. Richard Ho Lung

      The Missionaries of the Poor (M.O.P.) is an international monastic order of
      Brothers dedicated to "Joyful Service with Christ on the Cross" to serve the
      poorest of the poor. The order was started in 1981 by Father Richard Ho Lung and
      has now grown to over 500 brothers around the world.

      The Missionaries of the Poor take vows of poverty, chastity, obedience and free
      service to the poorest of the poor. We surrender all rights to our own material
      possessions, bodily desires, will and remuneration for services rendered to the
      poor. We have no private possessions, no bank accounts and live in
      community--sharing all things in common. Our material needs are supplied by the
      generosity of our supporters who share our faith, embrace our mission and offer
      their own resources to serve the poor with and through us. There are three
      basic ways you can help:


      http://www.missionariesofthepoor.org/donate.php

      http://www.missionariesofthepoor.org/volunteers.php

      MAIN OFFICE
      Missionaries of the Poor
      3 North Street
      Kingston, Jamaica, WI
      (876) 948-0280 or
      (876) 948-6173

      N THE U.S.A.
      Missionaries of the Poor
      PO Box 29893
      Atlanta, GA 30359
      (404) 248-1197

      IN CANADA
      Friends of the Poor
      PO Box 356
      Markham, Ontario
      L3P 3J8, Canada
      (905) 940-2606

      N THE UK
      MOP Supporters Assoc.
      St. Aidan's Cath. Church
      Finch Kane, Little Chalfont Bucks HP7 9NE

      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      14. THIS IS WHY GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD AND DIED TO SAVE IT.


      http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap120710.html


      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      . 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."
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      . DAILY REMINDERS
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      Pray for the Pope every day.

      "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."
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      * * *

      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      . ROMAN CATHOLIC NEWS ARCHIVES
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

      To gain access to all of the Roman Catholic News archives go to the
      URL:http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Roman-Catholic-News

      This will give you the archive of all of the articles in all issues.
      There are four ways to access archived articles: (1) Go to the Home
      Page panel on the far left and click on the word "Messages" just below
      the word "Home"; (2) then click on the articles posted by date; (3) or
      click on the blue Arabic numerals in the box for the month in the
      yearly calendar window at the bottom of the page;(4)or type in a
      keyword in the long rectangular white box alongside the long
      rectangular button that reads SEARCH ARCHIVE, and then click that
      button.
      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      Copyright 2001-2013 John N. Lupia for Roman Catholic News at the URL:
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      including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from
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