He said holiness is the vocation of all the baptized, and all the people of God are called to be saints.
The Pope then turned his thoughts to Wednesday’s commemoration of All Souls.
“From the early days of the Christian faith,” he said, “the Church on earth, recognizing the communion of the whole mystical body of Jesus Christ, has with great respect honored the memory of the dead and offered prayers for them.”
The Pope said “our prayers for the dead are not only useful, but necessary.”
The Holy Father reminded the faithful to keep the bonds of affection with our loved ones who have died, not only through prayer, but also through actions like visiting cemeteries.
He said this reminds us all that we are meant for another life after death.
Torrential rains caused more than a hundred deaths, thousands of homeless and severe damage in El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica. "Events like the storm that hit us this time are repeated year after year, and the people are always affected, the poorest people", said the Archbishop of San Salvador. Mgr. Escobar Alas concluded his usual press conference on Sunday saying that El Salvador should take an active part in solving the problem and not just wait for other countries to act in this respect. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 31/10/2011)
CATH NEWS REPORT: The Greens will introduce a Senate motion today calling for the national history curriculum to be revised to include more content on indigenous Australians and the Stolen Generation, reports theAustralian.
The Independent Education Union, which represents Catholic and independent school teachers, has also said it doesn't want Australian children to be given a "watered-down" history, the report adds.
Senator Rachel Siewert will make the motion after indigenous groups and private school teachers expressed concern that the new curriculum does not cover these areas adequately.
The National Sorry Day Committee has argued that former prime minister Kevin Rudd's 2008 apology to the Stolen Generations was not properly covered in the coursework, and other references to indigenous people were not well written.
"Australian children should not have to wait until Grade 10 to get a full picture of Australia's history.""References to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives in primary school are scarce and clumsily written, revealing serious flaws with the new curriculum," said the committee's indigenous co-chair Helen Moran in September.
Hundreds refugees from Timor-Leste staged a protest at the parliament building in Belu, East Nusa Tenggara province yesterday demanding the right to settle in Indonesia permanently.
The protesters waved banners and placards calling on the government to provide them with housing and plots of land.
Activists who joined the protest said the refugees, who fled Timor-Leste in 1999 because they did not support moves towards independence from Indonesia, deserved much better treatment than they are getting now.
We want the government to build better housing, provide land for farming, and schools, many of the activists said in their speeches yesterday.
Members of the Union of Catholic University Students of the Republic of Indonesia said the refugees have waited too long and received very little for their loyalty to Indonesia.
“We would like government officials to visit refugee camps and to do something real for our brothers and sisters,” said Johannes Guido Banusu, chairman of the union’s local chapter.
“For 12 long years they have lived in squalid refugee camps just to prove their loyalty to Indonesia,” he added.
Joao Pereira da Costa, a refugee, said he and many others have endured many years of hardship and feel Indonesia needs to more for them.
“We chose to live here, gave up our families, because we love this country. So, we have the right to be treated accordingly and get the chance to pursue a livelihood,” he said.
Feast: November 1
The church in this great festival honours all the saints reigning together in glory; first, to give thanks to God for the graces and crowns of all his elect: secondly, to excite ourselves to a fervent imitation of their virtues by considering the holy example of so many faithful servants of God of all ages, sexes, and conditions, and by contemplating the inexpressible and eternal bliss which they already enjoy, and to which we are invited: thirdly, to implore the divine mercy through this multitude of powerful intercessors: fourthly, to repair any failures or sloth in not having duly honoured God in his saints on their particular festivals, and to glorify him in the saints which are unknown to us, or for which no particular festivals are appointed. Therefore our fervour on this day ought to be such that it may be a reparation of our sloth in all the other feasts of the year; they being all comprised in this one solemn commemoration, which is an image of that eternal great feast which God himself continually celebrates in heaven with all his saints, whom we humbly join in praising his adorable goodness for all his mercies, particularly for all treasures of grace which he has most munificently heaped upon them. In this and all other festivals of the saints God is the only object of supreme worship, and the whole of that inferior veneration which is paid to the saints is directed to give sovereign honour to God alone, whose gifts their graces are: and our addresses to them are only petitions to holy fellow creatures for the assistance of their prayers to God for us. When, therefore, we honour the saints, in them and through them we honour God, and Christ, true God and true man, the Redeemer and Saviour of mankind, the King of the Saints, and the source of all their sanctity and glory. In his blood they have washed their robes: from him they derive all their purity, whiteness, and lustre. We consider their virtues as copies taken from him, the great Original, as streams from his fountain, or as images of his virtues produced by the effusion of his spirit and grace in them. His divine life is their great exemplar and prototype, and in the characteristical virtues of each saint some of his most eminent virtues are particularly set forth: his hidden life in the solitude of the anchorets; his spotless purity in the virgins; his patience or charity in some; his divine zeal in others; in them all in some degree his plenitude of all virtue and sanctity Nor are the virtues of the saints only transcripts and copies of the life or spirit of Christ; they are also the fruit of his redemption; entirely his gifts and graces. And when we honour the saints we honour and praise him who is the Author of all their good; so that all festivals of saints are instituted to honour God and our Blessed Redeemer.
In all feasts of saints, especially in this solemn festival of All Saints, it ought to be the first part of our devotion to praise and thank God for the infinite goodness he has displayed in favour of his elect. A primary and most indispensable homage we owe to God is that of praise, the first act of love and complacency in God and his adorable perfections. Hence the Psalms, the most perfect and inspired model of devotions, repeat no sentiments so frequently or with so much ardour as those of divine adoration and praise. This is the uninterrupted sweet employment of the blessed in heaven to all eternity; and the contemplation of the divine love and other perfections is a perpetual incentive inflaming them continually afresh in it, so that they cannot cease pouring forth all their affections and exhausting all their powers; and conceive every moment new ardour in this happy function of pure love. So many holy solitaries of both sexes in this life have renounced all commerce and pleasures of the world, to devote themselves wholly to the mixed exercises of praise and love, and of compunction and humble supplication. In these, all servants of God find their spiritual strength, refreshment, advancement, delight, and joy. To aid our weakness and supply our insufficiency in magnifying the infinite Lord of all things, and exalting his glory, we have recourse to the spotless victim, the sacrifice of the Lamb of God, put into our hands for us to offer a holocaust of infinite price, equal to the majesty of the Godhead. We also rejoice in the infinite glory which God possesses in himself, and from himself. Deriving from himself infinite greatness and infinite happiness, he stands not in need of our goods, and can receive no accession from our homages as to internal glory; in which consists his sovereign bliss. But there is an external glory which he receives from the obedience and praise of his creatures, which, though it increase not his happiness, is nevertheless indispensably due to him, and an external homage with which all beings are bound to sound forth his sovereign power and sanctity. Nor do we owe him this only for his own greatness and glory, which he possesses in himself, but also for the goodness, justice, wisdom' and power which he manifests in all his works. Compounds of the divine mercies as we are, we are bound to give to God incessant thanks for all the benefits, both in the order of nature and of grace, which he has gratuitously conferred upon us. We owe him also an acknowledgment of praise and thanksgiving for all his creatures from the beginning, and for all the wonders he has wrought in them or in their behalf. For this the psalmist and the prophets so often rehearse his mighty works, and invite all beings to magnify his holy name for them.
1Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down his disciples came to him.2And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying:3"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.4"Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.5"Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.6"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.7"Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.8"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.9"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.10"Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.11"Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.12Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so men persecuted the prophets who were before you.