Monday, November 15, 2010



COMMUNICATE THE GOSPEL CLEARLY AND COURAGEOUSLY VATICAN CITY, 13 NOV 2010 (VIS) - At midday today the Holy Father received participants in the plenary assembly of the Pontifical Council for Culture, who have dedicated their gathering this year to the theme: "The Culture of Communication and New Languages". The Pope began by expressing his appreciation for the "original idea" of inaugurating the plenary in Rome's Town Hall "with a round table discussion on the theme of 'In the city, listening to the languages of the soul'. In this way", he said, "the dicastery aimed to give expression to one of its essential tasks, that of listening to the men and women of our time, in order to promote new opportunities for announcing the Gospel". In this context the Holy Father also referred to the problems that pastors and faithful encounter "in communicating the evangelical message and transmitting the faith within the ecclesial community itself", especially "when the Church addresses men and women removed from or indifferent to an experience of faith, whom the evangelical message reaches in a way that is ineffective and unattractive. In a world that lays so much emphasis on communications strategy, the Church ... is not indifferent or isolated; quite the contrary, she seeks to use - with renewed creativity, critical sense and careful discernment - the new languages and channels of communication. "The incapacity of language to communicate the profound meaning and beauty of the experience of faith can contribute to the indifference of many, especially the young, and can become a reason for abandonment", the Pope added. "The Church wishes to establish dialogue with everyone, in the search for truth. But in order for dialogue and communication to be effective and fruitful it is necessary for people to be on the same wavelength, in places for friendly and sincere encounter, in that ideal 'Court of the Gentiles' which I suggested ... a year ago and which the dicastery is putting into effect in various emblematic fields of European culture". Benedict XVI went on: "Today many young people, bemused by the infinite possibilities offered by information networks and other technologies, establish forms of communication that do not contribute to human growth; rather, they risk increasing the sense of solitude and bewilderment. Faced with such phenomena I have spoken on a number of occasions of the educational emergency, a challenge which can and must be answered with creative intelligence, committing ourselves to promote forms of communication which humanise, stimulating the capacity to evaluate and discern". Going on then to consider "the rich and intense symbolism of the liturgy, which must shine forth in all its power as an element of communication", the Pope spoke of last Sunday's liturgy at the basilica of the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, Spain. That building, he said, is the masterpiece of the architect Antoni Gaudi "who brilliantly melded sacred and liturgical meaning into artistic forms that are both modern and in harmony with the finest architectural traditions. Nonetheless, the beauty of Christian life is even more incisive than art and image in communicating the evangelical message", he said. The Holy Father concluded by highlighting the need for "men and women who speak through their lives, who can communicate the Gospel clearly and courageously with the transparency of their actions and the joyful passion of their charity".AC/ VIS 20101115 (560)

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS VATICAN CITY, 13 NOV 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father: - Appointed Bishop Paul Yembuado Ouedraogo of Fada N'Gourma, Burkina Faso, as metropolitan archbishop of Bobo-Dioulasso (area 24,415, population 1,167,715, Catholics 130,193, priests 83, religious 263), Burkina Faso. The archbishop-elect was born in Bobo-Dioulasso in 1948, he was ordained a priest in 1974 and consecrated a bishop in 1997. He succeeds Archbishop Anselme Titianma Sanon, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese the Holy Father accepted, in accordance with canon 401 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law. - Appointed Bishop Luis Antonio Nova Rocha, auxiliary of the archdiocese of Barranquilla, Colombia, as bishop of Facatativa (area 2,311, population 494,000, Catholics 488,000, priests 93, permanent deacons 3, religious 254), Colombia. He succeeds Bishop Luis Gabriel Romero Franco, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit. - Appointed Bishop Jairo Jaramillo Monsalve of Santa Rosa de Osos, Colombia, as metropolitan archbishop of Barranquilla (area 3,319, population 2,670,000, Catholics 2,165,000, priests 159, religious 386), Colombia. The archbishop-elect was born in Rionegro, Colombia in 1940, he was ordained a priest in 1966 and consecrated a bishop in 1988. - Appointed Archbishop Salvatore Pennacchio, apostolic nuncio to India, also as apostolic nuncio to Nepal. - Appointed Cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera, perfect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, as a member of the congregation for the Causes of Saints.NER:RE:NN:NA/ VIS 20101115 (250)

ANGELUS: POPE HIGHLIGHTS IMPORTANCE OF AGRICULTURE VATICAN CITY, 14 NOV 2010 (VIS) - In his remarks prior to praying the Angelus this Sunday, the Holy Father spoke of the importance that work, especially agricultural work, has for human life. Addressing the thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square, the Pope recalled how this question is highlighted in today's reading from St. Paul, and that in Italy the second Sunday of November is dedicated to thanking God for the end of the harvest. "Although I know that in other areas the farming seasons are different, I would like to draw from St. Paul's words to reflect particularly on agricultural work", he said. "The current economic crisis, which was also examined during the recent meeting of the G20, must be faced in all its seriousness. It has many causes, and sends out a strong call for a profound revision in the model of global economic development. It is an acute symptom which must be added to other even more serious and already well-known symptoms such as the enduring imbalance between wealth and poverty, the scandal of hunger, the ecological emergency, and the now-widespread problem of unemployment. Faced with such a panorama, a strategic relaunch of agriculture is clearly vital. Indeed, the process of industrialisation has sometimes overshadowed the agricultural sector which, though it too has drawn benefit from modern technology, has nonetheless lost importance, bringing significant consequences also at a cultural level. I believe it is the moment to call for a re-evaluation of agriculture, not in nostalgic terms but as a vital resource for the future. "In the current economic situation", the Pope added, "the temptation for the most dynamic economies is to seek advantageous agreements. However, this can turn out to be harmful to poorer States, prolonging the situation of extreme poverty suffered by vast numbers of men and women and using up the natural resources of the earth, which was - as Genesis says - entrusted by God the Creator to man for him to cultivate and protect". He went on: "For this reason it is vital to cultivate and spread a clear ethical awareness, one capable of meeting the most complex challenges of the present time, educating people in wiser and more responsible consumption patterns, promoting personal responsibility and the social dimension of rural activities founded on such perennial values as welcome, solidarity, and sharing the fatigue of work". The Holy Father concluded: "Many young people have already chosen this path, and even a number of university graduates have chosen to dedicate themselves to agricultural business feeling that in this way they are responding, not only to a personal and family need, but also to a sign of the times, a concrete awareness of the common good".ANG/ VIS 20101115 (460)

AID FOR PEOPLE OF HAITI, PRAYER FOR NASCENT LIFE VATICAN CITY, 14 NOV 2010 (VIS) - Following today's Angelus the Pope again expressed his "closeness to the dear people of Haiti who, because of last January's terrible earthquake, are now suffering a serious cholera epidemic. I support everyone striving to cope with this latest emergency and, while giving assurances of a special mention in my prayers, appeal to the international community to give generous aid to these people". Benedict XVI then went on to recall that, on Saturday 27 November, he will preside "at first Vespers for the first Sunday of Advent and at a prayer vigil for nascent life. This is a joint initiative with particular Churches all over the world", he said, "and I have recommended that it also be held in parishes, religious communities, associations and movements. The period in which we prepare for Christmas is an appropriate time to invoke divine protection on every human being called into existence, and to thank God for the gift of life we received from our parents".ANG/ VIS 20101115 (180)

BRAZIL: FUNCTION OF THE EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE VATICAN CITY, 15 NOV 2010 (VIS) - At midday today Benedict XVI received prelates from the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil (Region centre west), who have just completed their "ad limina" visit. This was the last in a series of meetings with Brazilian bishops which began more than a year ago. The Pope remarked upon the coincidence between the date of his meeting with the first group of prelates from Brazil (which coincided with the country's Independence Day) and his meeting today with the last (coinciding with Republic Day). In this context he highlighted once again "the importance of the Church's evangelising work in the construction of Brazilian identity". For nearly sixty years the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil "has been a landmark for Brazilian society, where it increasingly and especially presents itself as a place in which to live the experience of charity", said the Holy Father. "Your episcopal conference, like all others, came into being as a concrete expression of the collegial affection of bishops in hierarchical communion with Peter's Successor, in order to be an instrument of effective and affective communion between all its members and of efficient collaboration with the pastor of each particular Church, in his triple function to teach, sanctify and govern the sheep of his flock". The episcopal conference, he went on, "is one of the forms of organisation which, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, enable the joint and harmonious exercise of certain pastoral functions, for the good of the faithful and of all the citizens of a particular territory. Indeed, ever closer co-operation with their brothers in the ministry helps bishops to accomplish their mandate more effectively, without abdicating their primary responsibility to feed ... the flock of their particular Church". Thus the episcopal conference "promotes unity of effort and intention among the bishops, becoming an instrument that enables them to share the fatigue of their labours. Yet it must avoid becoming a parallel reality or substituting the ministry of each individual bishop; in other words, it must not change his relationship with his particular Church and with the college of bishops, nor become the intermediary between the bishop and the See of Peter". "When you come together in your meetings, in the faithful exercise of your doctrinal function", said Benedict XVI, "you must study above all the most effective and appropriate means to present the universal Magisterium to the people entrusted to your care. ... You must also consider emerging questions, in order then to guide people's consciences to find adequate solutions to the new problems posed by social and cultural transformations". The Pope also noted how some of today's problems "require the joint action of bishops: the promotion and protection of faith and morals, the translation of liturgical books, the promotion and formation of vocations of special consecration, assistance in catechesis, ecumenical commitment, relations with civil authorities, the defence of human life from conception to natural end, the sanctity of the family and of marriage between a man and a woman, the right of parents to educate their children, religious freedom, human rights, peace and social justice". Benedict XVI concluded his remarks by remarking that "the counsellors and structures of the episcopal conference exist to serve the bishops, not to replace them. In the final analysis, it is important to ensure that the episcopal conference, in all its offices, works as a single body propelling the pastoral solicitude of bishops, whose principal concern must be the salvations of souls, which is also the fundamental mission of the Church".AL/ VIS 20101115 (600)

SPORT, A SCHOOL OF HUMAN AND CHRISTIAN VALUES VATICAN CITY, 15 NOV 2010 (VIS) - At midday today the Pope received a group of Italian ski instructors accompanied by Franco Frattini, minister for Foreign Affairs whom he thanked for his efforts to ensure that many Catholics, injured in recent attacks in Iraq, have been brought to Italy to receive medical attention. On the subject of sport the Holy Father affirmed that, "if practiced passionately and ethically, apart from fomenting a healthy spirit of competition, it becomes a school in which to learn and develop human and Christian values. ... Through sporting activity people gain a better understanding that the body cannot be considered as an object but that, though corporeity, it expresses itself and comes into relation with others. Thus, a balance between the physical and the spiritual dimensions ensures we do not idolise the body but respect it; not making it an instrument to be improved at all costs, perhaps even using illicit means". Skiing in the mountains, "contemplating creation, man recognises the greatness of God, the ultimate source of his own being and of the universe", said the Pope. "It must not be forgotten that the relationship with creation represents an important element in the development of human identity, and not even man's sin eliminated his duty to be the custodian of the world. Sporting activity can also be considered and lived as part of this responsibility. Scientific and technological progress give man the possibility to intervene and manipulate nature, but the ever-present risk is that of wishing to replace the Creator and reduce creation almost to the status of a product to be used and consumed. "What", the Holy Father added, "is the right attitude to take? Certainly, it is that of a feeling of profound gratitude and recognition, but also of responsibility to conserve and cultivate the work of God. Sporting activity helps to achieve this goal, by influencing lifestyle which is thus oriented towards balance, self-discipline and respect. For you in particular, the contact with nature is a reason to cultivate a profound love towards God's creation". Benedict XVI expressed the view that the role of ski instructors "is important both for healthy sports training and for education in environmental respect. It is, then, a task not to be carried out in isolation but in understanding with families, especially when your pupils are children, and in collaboration with schools and other educational institutions. Another important aspect is your witness as lay faithful who, in the context of sporting activities, can give a correct focus to certain fundamental moments for the life of the faith, especially the sanctification of Sunday, the day of the Lord".AC/ VIS 20101115 (450)

HEALTHCARE IN THE LIGHT OF "CARITAS IN VERITATE" VATICAN CITY, 15 NOV 2010 (VIS) - A press conference was held this morning in the Holy See Press Office to present the twenty-fifth international conference promoted by the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care. The conference is due to take place on 18 and 19 November and its theme this year is: "Towards egalitarian and human healthcare in the light of 'Caritas in veritate'". Participating in today's press conference were Archbishop Zygmunt Zimowski and Msgr. Jean-Marie Mpendawatu, respectively president and under secretary of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care; Fr. Maurizio Faggioni O.F.M., professor of bioethics at the "Academia Alfonisana" in Rome; Mario Benotti, director general of RAI International, and Domenico Arduini, professor of gynaecology and obstetrics and director of the gynaecological and obstetric clinic at Rome's University of Tor Vergata. The forthcoming meeting, Archbishop Zimowski explained, "will examine the current question of parity of access to basic healthcare services, not only in general terms, but in harmony with man's dignity and vocation. ... The initiative coincides with the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Pontifical Council for Healthcare Workers, providing an opportunity to evaluate results and to plan for the future", he said. In the light of the Encyclical "Caritas in veritate", the conference "will also examine, among other things, the fundamental requirements for an egalitarian and human promotion of health, the mission of the Church in favour of the sick, and the promotion of anthropocentric healthcare, as well as the role of civil society, the Church and other private institutions and organisations in promoting justice, equity and solidarity in the healthcare sector".OP/ VIS 20101115 (280)

AUDIENCES VATICAN CITY, 15 NOV 2010 (VIS) - Holy Father today received in audience Cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. On Saturday 13 November he received in separate audiences: - Ten prelates from the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil, on their "ad limina" visit: - Archbishop Washington Cruz C.P. of Goiania, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishop Waldemar Passini Dalbello. - Bishop Joao Wilk O.F.M. Conv. of Anapolis. - Bishop Eugene Lambert Adrian Rixen of Goias. - Bishop Guilherme Antonio Werlang M.S.F. of Ipameri. - Bishop Jose Luiz Majella Delgado C.SS.R. of Jatai, accompanied by Bishop emeritus Aloisio Hilario de Pinho F.D.P. - Bishop Adair Jose Guimaraes of Rubiataba-Mozarlandia. - Archbishop Osvino Jose Both, military ordinary. - Bishop Carmelo Scampa of Sao Luis de Monte Belos. - Francisco Arguello, founder of the Neo-Catechumenal Way, accompanied by an entourage. - Cardinal Marc Ouellet P.S.S., prefect of the Congregation for Bishops. - Cardinal Ivan Dias, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of PeoplesAL:AP/ VIS 20101115 (180)
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ASIA NEWS REPORT: An online petition (to be sent to AsiaNews, or directly to the President of Pakistan) for the revocation of the death sentence for a Christian woman sentenced to hang for blasphemy. But we are also asking for the cancellation or overhaul of the blasphemy law, which is destroying harmony and development in Pakistan.Rome (AsiaNews) – At our reader’s request, AsiaNews has decided to launch an international petition to be sent to President Asif Zardari to save the life of Asia Bibi, who was sentenced to hanging for blasphemy. AsiaNews is also asking President Zardari to cancel or change the unjust blasphemy law, which kills many innocent victims and destroys coexistence in the country. We are asking you o support this initiative by sending a message to the following email:salviamoasiabibi@asianews.itOr you can send a message directly to the Pakistani campaign is one of many being launched in Italy (with Tv2000), Pakistan, India and the United States.Asia Bibi, a Christian woman of 45, mother of five children, was sentenced to death for blasphemy on November 7 last. A Punjab court in ruled that the woman, a farm worker, offended the Prophet Mohammed. But in reality, Asia Bibi was first insulted as "impure" (because not-Islamic), then forced to defend her Christian faith in the face of pressure from other Muslim labourers. The husband of one of them, the local imam, decided to launch charges and denounce the woman, who was first beaten, then imprisoned and finally, after one year, sentenced to death.Asia Bibi and her husband Ashiq Masih have decided to appeal to overturn the ruling. Meanwhile, the mother now faces months of imprisonment at the mercy of prison guards or some fanatic who could kill her under the misguided belief that he is giving glory to Allah.Up until now, the blasphemy law had not led to an execution of any accused or convicted. But 33 people charged with blasphemy were killed in prison by guards, or in the vicinity of the court. The latest such case involved two Protestant Christians, Pastor Emmanuel and his brother Rashid Sajjad, shot at point blank range as they left the court in Faisalabad on 19 July. However we can group these deaths with those killed in the massacres of entire villages, in Gojra, Korian, Kasur, Sangla Hill, where hundreds of houses belonging to Christians were burned and where women and children were killed or burned alive, just because one member of the village had been accused of blasphemy.It is now startlingly clear that this law has become a tool in the hands of fundamentalists that pit Muslims against Christians in order to measure the extent of their power over Pakistani society. It is also clear that almost all the accusations of blasphemy are born from envy, revenge, competition, and that the arrest of the accused is but the first step to allow the expropriation of land, looting and theft.We desperately want to save Asia Bibi. But we can not content ourselves with this alone. We must strive so that this law, defined by the Pakistanis themselves as "obscene", is changed or better yet, revoked. It was desired by the dictator Zia ul-Haq in 86, in exchange for the Islamic community’s support. But in doing so he laid the foundation for the destruction of Pakistan. This country, founded as a secular republic and neutral toward religion, has become an Islamic state that kills its own people, destroys its own social fabric and is of major concern to the international community.The blasphemy law has become a sword of Damocles over every person’s head and especially those belonging to minorities, who are paying dearly; Christians, Ahmadis, Hindus, Muslims but also Shiites and Sunnis.By eliminating this law - or at least curbing it – new impetus will be given to interfaith coexistence in Pakistan, to democracy and development. This will also give greater breadth to security and the international community, which views the spread of Taliban rule in a country that has nuclear weapons with concern.We believe that the only bulwark to the growth of fundamentalism is to ensure equal coexistence between Christians and Muslims. For this reason we ask for the life of Asia Bibi to be saved. And with this we ask, we hope that Pakistan may also be saved.
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The Church Music Association of America is pleased to bring you hundreds of free, high-quality editions of chant and chant instruction, with no access fees.The latest addition to the vast collection of instruction books is An Applied Course in Gregorian Chant, by Joseph Robert Carroll from 1956. We invite you to examine this wonderful text and possibly pass it on to your singers as a very useful tool for achieving excellence in singing.Here are more instructional guides. And here are the chant books themselves. It is the most extensive online library of its kind. Our store with physical copies for sale is also available.The CMAA is also working to publish new editions of chant in English for use in parish life today. The campaign to fund Adam Bartlett’s Simple English Propers is right now 68% completed, after only two weeks.If you would like to help, even with the smallest donation, you can go to the campaign site and pledge. The goal is to have these available for free as a full set in time for the new Missal translation. We also plan to have hard copies available for free. Pledge today so that we can move from 68% to 100%.SOURCE CHURCH MUSIC ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA
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IND. CATH. NEWS REPORT: This September saw the numbers entering English seminaries to become Catholic priests at their highest level in a decade. 56 men began the journey towards priesthood this year. "The number of people responding to the call of Christ to be priests and religious has been rising slowly but surely, said Fr Stephen Lanrgidge, Chairman of the Vocations Directors of England and Wales, and may rise further as people respond to the visit of Pope Benedict."At their annual conference held last week at Oscott seminary in Birmingham, the Vocations Directors discussed the approaches to vocations work that have contributed to this increase. Many dioceses and religious orders now run discernment groups for young men and women where all vocations are discussed. Such groups encourage lay, religious and priestly vocations. Fr Christopher Jamison, Director of the National Office of Vocation, commented: "When everybody in the Church takes seriously Newman's insight that 'God has created me to do him some definite service,' then a greater number discover their call to the priesthood and religious life."Vocations directors also discussed new ways to promote this culture of vocation. 'Invocation' was a festival held in Birmingham in July 2010 for Catholics aged 16-35 who are discerning their vocation and some 300 young people attended. This was so popular that it is being held again on the weekend 17th to 19th June 2011.Schools are now being provided with high quality on-line materials and youth ministers are developing new approaches to bringing the gospel to life for the young. Attending events such as World Youth Day is an important experience that opens the eyes of many people to the richness of life in the Church and plans for English and Welsh participation are well developed.More information is available at the following web sites:
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ALL AFRICA REPORT: The Catholic Diocese of Aba has risen in defence of its priest, Rev. Father Bonaventure Akwarandu, who was arrested by soldiers and branded a suspected kidnaper and said the priest was wrongly accused as he was never involved in crime nor has he any link with the criminals terrorising Abia State.Bishop of Aba Diocese, Rt. Reverend Vincent Valentine Ezeonyia, absolved the priest of any wrong doing, and argued that the fact that he was found living close to kidnappers did not make him one because he is a soldier of Christ, Father Akwarandu, who is the parish priest of St. Michael's Catholic Church Umuezi in Obingwa Local Government, was arrested by soldiers, who stormed the den of a kidnappers on October 10 and subsequently took him away for investigations, thereby sparking insinuations that the soldier of Christ had links with the criminals.Ezeonyia in explaining the long silence of the Church on the matter, told newsmen that it decided to keep quiet over the arrest to enable security agencies carry out their investigations and now it has become necessary to put the record straight because: "The truth has emerged that so far nothing incriminating has been found against Father Akwarandu".He said the priest had no links with the kidnappers even though their base was behind his church, adding that the traumatised priest had complained to him (the Bishop) about his predicament and was not expected to act as police informant "when there was no guarantee that anyone who dared to play such a role would not be victimised," he said."Father Akwarandu had on many occasions informed me that the presbytery in Umuezi had become very dangerous as a result of the bullets frequently shot into the church premises by the kidnappers. As a follow up to his reports, he picked up five spent empty shells from his compound, intending to show them to me as proof of the point he has been making. These were the spent bullets in the pigeon hole of his vehicles, which he himself showed the soldiers," the Bishop said.He lamented that the "unfounded allegations" against Father Akwarandu carried in the media "have caused untold embarrassment and damage to the Reverend Father and the Catholic Church in the Diocese of Aba, Nigeria and indeed worldwide".The Catholic Bishop of Aba also decried the desecration of the Blessed Sacrament in St. Michael's Church as well as the damages inflicted on the Church during the raid by soldiers, explaining that the two alleged kidnappers said to have been quartered in the Church were those who sought refuge in the Church while escaping from soldiers."In as much as the Church respects whatever the government does to bring sanity to the state, the Church takes an exception to the desecration of the Blessed Sacrament and other damages done to the Church. No offence should warrant the desecration of the tabernacle by anybody," he said.
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CATH NEWS REPORT: The number of religious in Australia's Catholic orders has shrunk by more than half since 1976, according to a census of nuns, brothers and clerical priests, and the tradition of entering holy orders has almost entirely died out, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.The newspaper reports from a survey that was carried out in 2009, to be launched publicly today. It found there were 8422 religious personnel in Australia compared with 17,029 at the last census in 1976.These numbers include retired ''religious'', as nuns, brothers and priests attached to an order are known. The median age is 73, and only 8.2 per cent are aged under 50, whereas 26.6 per cent are aged 80 or more.''The age profiles of the religious ... indicate that numbers will continue to decline steadily for the foreseeable future,'' the report says.Its co-author, Father Noel Connolly, said that although the religious were ageing, they were more motivated than ever. ''There is a great deal of energy in these people even though they might be fewer and older,'' he said. ''I think on the whole they are more hopeful.''There are no cowards in this game any more because we haven't always had a lot of success. If you keep going when there are all these problems, that's a fairly mature and tested hope.''Despite what many would see as an existential crisis, radical reform is not on the agenda for most orders. When asked what effects ageing and the thinning of their ranks were having on plans for the future, 40 congregations out of 109 said they were ''not contemplating change''.
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St. Albert the GreatDOCTOR OF THE CHURCHFeast: November 15Information:Feast Day:November 15

Born:1206, Lauingen, BavariaDied:November 15, 1280, Cologne, Holy Roman EmpireCanonized:1931 by Pius XIMajor Shrine:St. Andreas in ColognePatron of:medical technicians; natural sciences; philosophers; scientists; studentsHe was known as the "teacher of everything there is to know," was a scientist long before the age of science, was considered a wizard and magician in hi

s own lifetime, and became the teacher and mentor of that other remarkable mind of his time, St. Thomas Aquinas.St. Albert the Great was born in Lauingen on the Danube, near Ulm, Germany; his father was a military lord in the army of Emperor Frederick II. As a young man Albert studied at the University of Padua and there fell under the spell of Blessed Jordan of Saxony, the Dominican who made the rounds of the universities of Europe drawing the best young men of the universities into the Dominicans.After several teaching assignments in his order, he came in 1241 to the University of Paris, where he lectured in theology. While teaching in Paris, he was assigned by his order in 1248 to set up a house of studies for the order in Cologne. In Paris, he had gathered around him a small band of budding theologians, the chief of whom was Thomas Aquinas, who accompanied him to Cologne and became his greatest pupil.In 1260, he was appointed bishop of Regensberg; when he resigned after three years, he was called to be an adviser to the pope and was sent on several diplomatic missions. In his latter years, he resided in Cologne, took part in the Council of Lyons in 1274, and in his old age traveled to Paris to defend the teaching of his student Thomas Aquinas.It was in Cologne that his reputation as a scientist grew. He carried on experiments in chemistry and physics in his makeshift laboratory and built up a collection of plants, insects, and chemical compounds that gave substance to his reputation. When Cologne decided to build a new cathedral, he was consulted about the design. He was friend and adviser to popes, bishops, kings, and statesmen and made his own unique contribution to the learning of his age.He died a very old man in Cologne on November 15,1280, and is buried in St. Andrea's Church in that city. He was canonized and declared a Doctor of the Church in 1931 by Pope Pius XI. His writings are remarkable for their exact scientific knowledge, and for that reason he has been made the patron saint of scientists.Thought for the Day: St. Albert the Great was convinced that all creation spoke of God and that the tiniest piece of scientific knowledge told us something about Him. Besides the Bible, God has given us the book of creation revealing something of His wisdom and power. In creation, Albert saw the hand of God.From "The Catholic One Year Bible": Since we have a kingdom nothing can destroy, let us please God by serving him with thankful hearts, and with holy fear and awe. For our God is a consuming fire.—Hebrews 12:28-29
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TODAY'S GOSPEL: NOV. 15: Luke 18: 35 - 43
Luke 18: 35 - 4335As he drew near to Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging;36and hearing a multitude going by, he inquired what this meant.37They told him, "Jesus of Nazareth is passing by."38And he cried, "Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!"39And those who were in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent; but he cried out all the more, "Son of David, have mercy on me!"40And Jesus stopped, and commanded him to be brought to him; and when he came near, he asked him,41"What do you want me to do for you?" He said, "Lord, let me receive my sight."42And Jesus said to him, "Receive your sight; your faith has made you well."43And immediately he received his sight and followed him, glorifying God; and all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.
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