Tuesday, November 2, 2010








(IMAGE: Pope prays at tombs of Popes on All Soul's Day, Nov. 2)Radio Vaticana report: The victims of Sunday’s massacre in Our Lady of Salvation Church Baghdad were laid to rest Tuesday. A telegram from Pope Benedict to the leader of the Syro-Catholic Church in the Iraqi capital, Archbishop Athanase Matti Shaba Matoka, was read out to mourners during the funeral service.The Pope says “deeply moved by the violent death of so many faithful and their priests Tha’ir Saad and Boutros Wasim, I wish, during the sacred funeral rite, to share spiritually in this occasion and pray that these our brothers and sisters are welcomed by the mercy of Christ into the Father's House”.He continues “for years this country has been suffering untold hardships and even Christians have become the subject of brutal attacks that, in total disregard of life – an inviolable gift from God - want to undermine confidence and peace”. Pope Benedict writes “I renew my call that the sacrifice of our brothers and sisters may be the seed of peace and true rebirth, and that those who care about reconciliation, solidarity and fraternal coexistence, find the strength and motivation to do good”.Hundreds of Catholics and non Catholics gathered at the Church of St Joseph in central Baghdad Tuesday, the Feast of All Souls, to bury the dead from Sunday’s ferocious attack. “This attack has been condemned by the whole Iraqi community! It is not a matter of faith! Certainly, the intention is to create chaos. There are dark forces that have entered the country only to create this division and to prevent the process of pacification of Iraq”, says Corbishop Philip Najem, procurator for the Chaldean Catholic Church. “I heard yesterday that there were many Muslims who had gone to donate blood for the victims who were injured in the church. The extremists have been condemned by Muslims themselves: by that Islam that knows God, that knows faith, that knows love, that knows charity!” On Sunday Islamic militants killed 58 people and wounded nearly 80 in a shocking attack during evening Mass at the Syro-Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of Salvation.On Tuesday speaking to a packed and distraught congregation Chaldean Patriarch Emmanuel III Delly, urged the government to protect the nation's Christian community and not let their promises just be ink on paper. He said “We are gathered here in this sacred house to say farewell for our brothers who were just the day before yesterday exclaiming love and peace”. An Iraqi military spokesman said Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki ordered the detention of the police commander, whom he did not identify by name. The commander was in charge of securing the Karradah neighborhood in Baghdad where Our Lady of Salvation is located.Also Tuesday, speaking from Syria where he is on official visit, Iraqi Vice President Adel Abdul-Mahdi said the assault was “very painful” for the stunned nation because “it harbours a sinister plan to empty the region of one of its main components: the Christians”.Corbishop Philip Najem says that the Iraqi community as a whole has been gathering around the Christian community: “This is a barbaric attack, different from other attacks. This time the extremists have come to a church where people were praying. They were innocents attacked by people who do not know the meaning of prayer, the meaning of God the Creator. So no one can say that this has been done in the name of a religion, a faith or a god. This is an attack against humanity, against the Church, against religion, against faith, against the dignity of the human being”.
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Priests for Life REPORT - Father Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, is urging all pro-life voters to mobilize immediately for the cause of life: "While voting is always a moral obligation, sometimes that obligation is stronger than at other times. This is especially true when pro-life people have an opportunity to elect, in a close race, someone who is committed to protect the unborn, and remove from office someone else who isn't," Father Pavone said."It is also true when the balance of power in a legislative body can be changed by the election. We have a moral obligation to vote in such a way that will do the most to advance the culture of life." Referring people to the Priests for Life election center,, Father Pavone urged a wide range of activities, including taking the day off on Election Day in order to distribute voter guides, volunteer for campaigns and for poll-watching, and taking people to the polls. To hear Priests for Life's latest national webcast on the importance of voting, go to "We each have one vote, but we can also influence thousands of other votes," Father Pavone concluded.Father Pavone authored this "Prayer for our Nation as we Prepare to Elect our Leaders"O God, we acknowledge you today as Lord,Not only of individuals, but of nations and governments.We thank you for the privilegeOf being able to organize ourselves politicallyAnd of knowing that political loyaltyDoes not have to mean disloyalty to you.We thank you for your law,Which our Founding Fathers acknowledged And recognized as higher than any human law.We thank you for the opportunity that this election year puts before us,To exercise our solemn duty not only to vote,But to influence countless others to vote,And to vote correctly.Lord, we pray that your people may be awakened.Let them realize that while politics is not their salvation,Their response to you requires that they be politically active.Awaken your people to know that they are not called to be a sect fleeing the worldBut rather a community of faith renewing the world.Awaken them that the same hands lifted up to you in prayer Are the hands that pull the lever in the voting booth;That the same eyes that read your WordAre the eyes that read the names on the ballot,And that they do not cease to be ChristiansWhen they enter the voting booth.Awaken your people to a commitment to justiceTo the sanctity of marriage and the family,To the dignity of each individual human life,And to the truth that human rights begin when human lives begin,And not one moment later.Lord, we rejoice todayThat we are citizens of your kingdom.May that make us all the more committedTo being faithful citizens on earth.We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
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AsiaNews REPORT – The new bishop, Mgr. John Baptist Li Suguang, tells AsiaNews of his desire to work for unity between the two communities, underground and official living in the diocese. So far this year, nine bishops have been ordained in China.Underground Catholics, including three priests, attended the ordination Mass for the new coadjutor bishop of Nanchang (Jiangxi), Jiangxi Province, last October 31. This was confirmed to AsiaNews, by the bishop himself, Mgr. John Baptist Li Suguang, after the ceremony which was held in the cathedral.Bishop Li is the ninth bishop to be ordained in China in 2010.Approved by the Holy See and recognized by the Chinese government, Bishop Li, says he wants to work hard for reconciliation between the Catholic communities (official and underground) currently living in the diocese. The prelate also stressed that his ordination was also known to the underground bishop of Yujiang, the 90 year-old Mgr. Thomas Zeng Jingmu. In any case, evangelization in parishes and formation work will top his agenda for developing the diocese with about 70 thousand Catholics,.Bishop Joseph Li Shan of Beijing officiated the ordination, and bishop Zhao Fengchang of Liaocheng (Shandong) and bishop Shen Bin of Haimen (Jiangsu) were co-ordainers. Also present was the Ordinary of the diocese, Bishop Wu Shizhen, who is very ill. All four bishops are approved by the Holy See.Bishop Li was born in 1964 in a Catholic family in Changzi, in Shanxi. After finishing high school in 1987, he entered the diocesan seminary: Then he studied at Beijing Diocesan Seminary.He was ordained a priest in August 1992 and sent to Shuozhou for three years, and after, to the diocese of Jiangxi. He was appointed vicar general in 1999, and elected bishop coadjutor in July 2009.At the ceremony were the uncle and relatives of the new bishop, from Shanxi. According to the new bishop, "The ceremony was very touching, I was especially touched to see this cooperation and unity among the priests and the faithful in preparations." There were a thousand Catholics and the Mass was concelebrated by 80 priests.,-underground-Catholics-also-present-19878.html
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Ind. Cath News report- "Openness does not imply weakness, nor a tolerance which ignores truth and justice. Being open does not mean adhering to others' ideologies. It means being truly sympathetic and welcoming to people, listening to them, and in particular to people who are weak or poor or oppressed, so as to live in communion with them." Jean Vanier, Our Journey Home, p145Jean Vanier will be speaking to young people on the subject 'To be human is to be vulnerable.' The talk, at 7.30pm on Wednesday, 24 November, takes place at the Residence of the Little Sisters of the Poor in Vauxhall, SW8 1QH.Jean Vanier is the founder of the international movement of L'Arche Communities, where people who have developmental disabilities and the friends who assist them create homes and share life together. He is internationally recognised for his compelling vision of what it means to live a fully human life and for his social and spiritual leadership in building a compassionate society.This event is hosted by the Young Friends of Westminster Cathedral by kind arrangement with the community of the Little Sisters of the Poor. Spaces are limited and attendees are asked kindly to arrive by 7.15pm. Contact or for any further information.
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CISA REPORT - Diocese begins Novena in Preparation for Bishops’ Plenary. The Catholic Diocese of Rumbek has started a nine-day prayer in preparation for the Sudan Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SCBC) to be hosted by the diocese from November 7-15, 2010.Speaking at Good News Radio studio on Monday, the Vicar General of Rumbek Diocese Fr. Andrea Osman Okello said that the diocese started the novena on Saturday October 30, in preparation for the plenary meeting of the Catholic Bishops of Sudan.Fr. Andrea said that the diocese is united in prayer for the success of the forthcoming bishops’ meeting, adding that the meeting will bring together not only bishops of Sudan, but also representatives from the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA) and the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM).Fr. Andrea urged the Southern Sudanese to be calm and keep unity as the country prepares for the referendum vote, adding that “violence cannot help.”He encouraged the practice of reconciliation whenever there are differences, urging the Southern Sudanese people to conduct the referendum in an atmosphere of peace manifested during the April general elections.The forthcoming SCBC plenary meeting is the second this year with focus on the historical moment of the referendum at which Southern Sudan will exercise the right to self-determination, voting either for unity or secession.
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Cath news report- A group of faith-based aged-care providers are telling the Federal Government that "immediate action" is required in caring for the elderly, said The Catholic Weekly.Catholic Health Australia chief executive officer Martin Laverty and representatives from Anglicare, Uniting Care and the Aged-Care Association of Australia, which make up The Campaign for the Care of Older Australians, met last week at the offices of the Sydney archdiocese, said the report."In the lead-up to the election we made the case to Government that aged-care urgently needed attention," Mr Laverty said."Three steps need to be taken. The first step is older Australians need to be given choice in the type of services they can access."The second step is the disadvantaged and vulnerable need to be given preference in assistance so that those in socio-economic disadvantage don't miss out on the care they need."The third step is that aged-care providers need to be put on a sustainable footing be­cause at the moment about half of aged-care providers around Australia are in financial vulnerability."He continued: "In the meeting we renewed our call on the Australian Government to prioritise aged-care reform."
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Commemoration of All Faithful Departed

Feast: November 2Information:Feast Day:November 2By purgatory, no more is meant by Catholics than a middle state of souls, viz. of purgation from sin by temporary chastisements, or a punishment of some sin inflicted after death, which is not eternal. As to the place, manner, or kind of these sufferings, nothing has been defined by the church; and all who with Dr. Deacon except against this doctrine, on account of the circumstance of a material fire, quarrel about a mere scholastic question in which a person is at liberty to choose either side. This doctrine of a state of temporary punishment after death for some sins is interwoven with the fundamental articles of the Christian religion. For, as eternal torments are the portion of all souls which depart this life under the guilt of mortal sin, and everlasting bliss of those who die in the state of grace, so it is an obvious consequence that among the latter many souls may be defiled with lesser stains, and cannot enter immediately into the joy of the Lord. Repentance may be sincere, though something be wanting to its perfection; some part of the debt which the penitent owes to the divine justice may remain uncancelled, as appears from several instances mentioned in the holy scriptures, as of David, of the Israelites in the wilderness, of Moses and Aaron, and of the prophet slain by a lion, which debt is to be satisfied for either in this life or in the next. Certainly, some sins are venial, which deserve not eternal death; yet, if not effaced by condign penance in this world, must be punished in the next. Every wound is not mortal; nor does every small offence totally destroy friendship. The scriptures frequently mention these venial sins, from which ordinarily the just are not exempt, who certainly would not be just if these lesser sins, into which men easily fall by surprise, destroyed grace in them, or if they fell from charity. Yet the smallest sin excludes a soul from heaven so long as it is not blotted out. Nothing which is not perfectly pure and spotless can stand before God, who is infinite purity and sanctity, and cannot bear the sight of the least iniquity. Whence it is said of heaven, "There shall in no wise enter into it anything defiled." It is the great employment of all the saints or pious persons here below by rigorous self-examination to try their actions and thoughts, and narrowly to look into all the doublings and recesses of their hearts; continually to accuse and judge themselves, and by daily tears of compunction, works of penance, and the use of the sacraments, to correct all secret disorders, and wipe away all filth which their affections may contract. Yet who is there who keeps so constant a guard upon his heart and whole conduct as to avoid all insensible self-deceptions? Who is there upon whose heart no inordinate attachments steal; into whose actions no sloth, remissness, or some other irregularity ever insinuates itself? Or whose compunction and penance is so humble and clear-sighted, so fervent and perfect, that no lurking disorder of his whole life escapes him, and is not perfectly washed away by the sacred blood of Christ, applied by these means or conditions to the soul? Who has perfectly subdued and regulated all his passions, and grounded his heart in perfect humility, meekness, charity, piety, and all other virtues, so as to bear the image of God in himself, or to be holy and perfect, even as he is, without spot? Perhaps scarce in any moment of our lives is our intention or motive so fervent, and so pure or exempt from the least imperceptible sinister influence and mixture of sloth, self-complacency, or other inordinate affection or passion; and all other ingredients or circumstances of our action so perfect and holy, as to be entirely without failure in the eyes of God, which nothing can escape. Assiduous conversation with heaven, constant watchfulness, self-denial, and a great purity of heart, with the assistance of an extraordinary grace, give the saints a wonderful light to discover and correct the irregularities of their affections. Yet it is only by the fervent spirit and practice of penance that they can be purified in the sight of God.The Blessed Virgin was preserved by an extraordinary grace from the least sin in the whole tenor of her life and actions; but, without such a singular privilege, even the saints are obliged to say that they sin daily; but they forthwith rise again by living in constant compunction and watchfulness over themselves. Venial sins of surprise are readily effaced by penance, as we hope of the divine mercy; even such sins which are not discovered by us are virtually repented of by a sincere compunction, if it be such as effectually destroys them. Venial sins of malice, or committed with full deliberation, are of a different nature, far more grievous and fatal, usually of habit, and lead even to mortal sin. Those Christians who shun these more willful offences, yet are not very watchful over themselves, and labour not very strenuously in subduing all their passions, have just reason to fear that some inordinate affections taint almost the whole body of their actions, without being sufficiently repented of. And the very best Christians must always tremble at the thought of the dreadful account they have to give to God for every idle word or thought. No one can be justified before God but by his pure and free mercy. Yet no man will say that a venial sin, which destroys not sanctifying grace, will be punished with eternal torments. Hence there must be a relaxation of some sin in the world to come, as is sufficiently implied, according to the remark of St. Austin, in these words of Christ, where he says that the sin against the Holy Ghost "shall not be forgotten in this world, nor in the world to come." Christ, exhorting us to agree with our adversary or accuser by appeasing our conscience, mentions a place of punishment out of which souls shall be delivered, though not before they shall have paid the last farthing.The church of Christ is composed of three different pasts: the triumphant in heaven, the militant on earth, and the patient or suffering in purgatory. Our charity embraces all the members of Christ. Our love for him engages and binds us to his whole body, and teaches us to share both the miseries and afflictions, and the comforts and blessings of all that are comprised in it. The communion of saints which we profess in our creed implies a communication of certain good works and offices, and a mutual intercourse among all the members of Christ. This we maintain with the saints in heaven by thanking and praising God for their triumphs and crowns, imploring their intercession, and receiving the succours of their charitable solicitude and prayers for us; likewise with the souls in purgatory, by soliciting the divine mercy in their favour. Nor does it seem to be doubted but they, as they are in a state of grace and charity, pray also for us; though the church never addresses public suffrages to them, not being warranted by primitive practice and tradition so to do. That to pray for the faithful departed is a pious and wholesome charity and devotion is proved clearly from the Old Testament, and from the doctrine and practice of the Jewish synagogue. The baptisms or legal purifications which the Jews sometimes used for the dead demonstrate their belief that the dead receive spiritual succours from the devotion of the living. In the second book of the Machabees it is related that Judas, the Machabee, sent twelve thousand ducats of silver to the temple for sacrifices to be offered for the dead, "thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection. It is therefore a holy and a wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from their sins." This book is ranked among the canonical scriptures by the apostolical canons, Tertullian, St. Cyprian, St. Hilary, St. Ambrose, St. Austin, the third council of Carthage, &c. Some ancients call it apocryphal, meaning that it was not in the Hebrew canon compiled by Esdras, it being writ after his time; and Origen and St. Jerome, who give it that epithet, sometimes quoted it as of divine authority. The Catholic church admits the deutero-canonical books of those which were compiled after the time of Esdras as written equally by divine inspiration. If some among the ancients doubted of them before tradition in this point had been examined and cleared, several parts of the New Testament which are admitted by Protestants have been no less called in question. Protestants, who at least allow this book a historical credit, must acknowledge this to have been the belief and practice of the most virtuous and zealous high-priest, of all the priests and doctors attached to the service of the temple, and of the whole Jewish nation; and a belief and custom which our blessed Redeemer nowhere reprehended in them.The faith and practice of the Christian church from the beginning is manifest from the writings of the primitive fathers. In all ancient liturgies, or masses, express mention is made of prayer and sacrifice for the dead. In the Apostolical Constitutions is extant a very ancient fragment of a liturgy, from which Grabe, Hicks, and Deacon borrow many things for their new models of primitive liturgies, and which Whiston pretended to rank among the canonical scriptures. In it occurs a prayer for the dead: "Let us pray for those who are departed in peace." There is no liturgy used by any sect of Oriental Christians, though some have been separated from the communion of the church ever since the fifth or sixth centuries, in which prayer for the dead does not occur. The most ancient fathers frequently speak of the offering the holy sacrifice of the altar for the faithful departed. Tertullian, the oldest among the Latin Christian writers, mentioning certain apostolical traditions, says, "We make yearly offerings (or sacrifices) for the dead, and for the feasts of the martyrs." He says 'that a widow prays for the soul of her deceased husband, and begs repose for him, and his company in the first resurrection, and offers (sacrifice) on the anniversary days of his death. For if she does not these things, she has, as much as lies in her, divorced him." St. Cyprian mentions the usual custom of celebrating sacrifice for every deceased Christian. Nor can it be said that he speaks in the same manner of martyrs. The distinction he makes is evident: "It is one thing to be cast into prison not to be released till the last farthing is paid, and another thing through the ardour of faith immediately to attain to the reward; it is very different by long punishment for sin to be cleansed a long time by fire, and to have purged away all sin by suffering." St. Chrysostom reckons it amongst the dreadful obligations of a priest "that he is the intercessor to God for the sins both of the living and the dead." St. Clement of Alexandria, who flourished in the year 200, says that by punishment after death men must expiate every the least sin before they can enter heaven. The vision of St. Perpetua is related by St. Austin, and in her acts. Origen, in many places, and Lactantius teach at large that all souls are purged by the punishment of fire before they enter into bliss, unless they are so pure as not to stand in need of it.
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TODAY'S GOSPEL: NOV. 2: John 11: 17 - 27
John 11: 17 - 2717Now when Jesus came, he found that Laz'arus had already been in the tomb four days.18Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles off,19and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother.20When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary sat in the house.21Martha said to Jesus, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.22And even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you."23Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again."24Martha said to him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day."25Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live,26and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?"27She said to him, "Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, he who is coming into the world."
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