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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

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2014

Latest Vatican Information Service News and Pope Francis

Saint September 17 : St. Robert Bellarmine : Patron of Catechists, Canon Lawyers and Catechumens : Doctor


Latest Vatican Information Service News and Pope Francis

Summary
- The Church, universal and missionary, cannot be wrapped up in herself
- The Pope to the faithful: accompany me in Albania in prayer
- Decrees of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints
- Sixth meeting of the Council of Cardinals
- “Evangelii gaudium” and pastoral ministry: three day meeting in the Vatican

- Presentation of the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, 2015
- Appointments to the IOR Board of Superintendence finalised
- The Pontifical Sistine Chapel Choir to sing in Macao, Hong Kong and Taipei
- The Pope to render homage to martyrs of faith in Albania
- Sixth meeting of the Council of Cardinals
- Francis marries twenty couples from the diocese of Rome
- Angelus: the Cross restores hope
- Humanity still has not learnt that war is madness
- Cardinal Aguilar to take possession of his titular church
- Audiences
- Other Pontifical Acts
The Church, universal and missionary, cannot be wrapped up in herself
Vatican City, 17 September 2014 (VIS) – The meaning of the terms “Catholic” and “apostolic” when we speak about the Church was the theme of Pope Francis' catechesis at this morning's Wednesday general audience in St. Peter's Square, attended by 50,000 faithful.
When we profess the Creed, we state that we believe in a Catholic and apostolic Church. “Catholic means universal”, said the Holy Father, “and a clear sign of this Catholicity is that she speaks all languages. This is none other than the effect of the Pentecost: indeed, it was the Holy Spirit that enabled the Apostles and the entire Church to communicate to all, to the very ends of the earth, the Good News of salvation and of God's love. Thus, the Church was born Catholic – that is, 'symphonic' since the beginning, and she cannot be otherwise, destined as she is for evangelisation and for encountering everyone”: The Pope, remarking that everyone is able to read the Word of God in his or her own language, again encouraged those present always to carry a copy of the Gospel and to read one or two passages each day.
“If the Church is born Catholic, it means that she was born to go forth, missionary”, continued Pope Francis. “If the Apostles had stayed in the Cenacle without going out to preach the Gospel, the Church would have remained there, in that city, in that country, in that room. It is what we express when we describe her as 'apostolic'. But they went forth. An apostle spreads the good news of Jesus' resurrection. This term reminds us that the Church, on the foundations of the Apostles and in continuity with them, is sent to proclaim the Gospel to all humanity, with the signs of the tenderness and strength of God. The Apostles went forth, they travelled the world, they founded new churches, they consecrated new bishops and in this way, we continue their work”.
“And this too derives from the Pentecost. Indeed, the Holy Spirit is able to overcome any resistance, to defeat the temptation to remain wrapped up in ourselves, an elect few, and to consider ourselves as the only ones destined to receive God's blessing. Imagine if a group of Christians were to consider itself in this way; they would die out. First in soul and then in body, as they would not be able to generate new life. They would not be apostolic. The Holy Spirit leads us towards our brothers, even to those who are far away in every sense, so that they can share with us the gift of love, peace and joy that the Risen Lord has left us”.
“What does it mean, for our communities and for each of us, to be part of a Church that is Catholic and apostolic? First of all, it means taking to heart the salvation of all humanity, not to be indifferent or removed from the fate of so many of our brothers, but rather to be open and in solidarity with them. It also means having a sense of the fullness, the completeness, the harmony of Christian life, always rejecting partial and unilateral positions that close us up in ourselves”.
Being part of the apostolic Church means “being aware that our faith is anchored in the proclamation and the witness of Jesus' Apostles, and therefore always being aware that were are sent out, in communion with the successors of the Apostles, with our hearts full of joy, to proclaim Christ and His love for all humanity”.
Pope Francis recalled the “heroic life” of all the missionaries who leave their homelands to take the Gospel to others, encouraging those present to give thanks to God for the missionaries the Church has had and will continue to need.
“Let us ask the Lord to renew in us the gift of His Spirit, so that every Christian community and baptised person may be an expression of the Catholic and apostolic Holy Mother Church”.
The Pope to the faithful: accompany me in Albania in prayer
Vatican City, 17 September 2014 (VIS) – At the end of today's general audience, the Holy Father greeted those present in various languages. In his greetings in Arabic, he addressed the faithful of the Holy Land “from where the light of proclamation issued forth to the ends of the earth”, urging them always to be, “despite difficulties, courageous and joyful bearers of the Message of salvation, truth and blessing”.
Before his greetings in Italian, the Pope spoke about his trip to Albania this coming Sunday, 21 September, and invited the faithful to accompany him in prayer. “I decided to visit this country because it has suffered greatly as a result of a terrible atheist regime and is now realising the peaceful co-existence of its various religious components”.
Decrees of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints
Vatican City, 17 September 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father today received in audience Cardinal Angelo Amato S.D.B., prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. During the audience he authorised the promulgation of decrees concerning the following causes:
MIRACLES
- Blessed Maria Cristina of the Immaculate Conception (nee Adelaide Brando), Italian foundress of the Oblation Sisters of the Holy Sacrament (1856-1906);
- Venerable Servant of God Pio Alberto del Corona, Italian professed priest of the Order of Preachers, bishop of San Miniato and founder of the Dominican Sisters of the Holy Spirit (1837-1912);
- Venerable Servant of God Marie-Elisabeth Turgeon, Canadian foundress of the Sisters of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary (1840-1881).
The Pontiff also approved the votes of the Ordinary Session of the Cardinal and Bishop Fathers in favour of the canonisation of Blessed Joseph Vaz, Indian priest of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri, founder of the Oratory of the Holy Cross of Miracles in Goa (1651-1711).
Finally, the Holy Father decided that a Consistory will be convoked shortly for the canonisation of Blessed Joseph Vaz and Blessed Maria Cristina of the Immaculate Conception, nee Adelaide Brando.
Sixth meeting of the Council of Cardinals
Vatican City, 17 September 2014 (VIS) – This morning, the director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J., provided an update on the sixth meeting of the Council of Cardinals, which began on Monday, 15 September and will conclude this afternoon. As usual, the Holy Father was present at all sessions apart from this morning's, due to theWednesday general audience.
“In the previous meetings, the Cardinals had worked by examining all the Congregations and Pontifical Councils, but they had also assigned a significant amount of time to hearing the referring Commissions on economic and organisational questions (COSEA and CRIOR) and on matters pertaining to the economic Dicasteries. Work in this area may now be considered complete, following the constitution of the Council and the Secretariat for the Economy. The press conference held by Cardinal Pell in July focused on the results of this work and on the initiation of the activities of these new organs.
“Therefore, in this meeting the Council of Cardinals resumed work on the other Dicasteries. In the meantime, several contributions had been prepared by various members of the Council on the different issues within their sphere of competence, which were proposed or presented to the Council. During these days, the Council focused on two principal “hotspots”.
“The first includes the themes of the laity and the family. It is a very broad area, encompassing many issues, including for instance the role of women in society and in the Church, youth, childhood, or matters related to lay associations and movements, and so on.
“The second comprises themes linked to justice and peace, charity, migrants and refugees, health, and the protection of life and ecology, especially human ecology.
“As can be seen, the discussions therefore involved many of the major issues that fall within the competences of the current Pontifical Councils, and how to face them in a coordinated and integrated fashion.
“The Council of Cardinals, as we are aware, does not make decisions, but formulates proposals for the Pope, who certainly intends to consult in further depth, also with regard to the various Dicasteries, involving those in roles of responsibility. Therefore, the Council’s proposals will be studied further, and it is to be expected that the Pope will speak about them, for instance, during the meetings with the Heads of the Dicasteries, which are convoked regularly and will certainly take place in the coming months.
“A draft Introduction for the new Constitution was also drawn up and distributed.
“In order to speed up this new phase in the work of the Council, the coordinator Cardinal Maradiaga has prepared an overall plan to facilitate the organisation of the contributions and reflections already offered during the previous meetings and the integration of new ones.
“It may be assumed that, with the next two meetings of the Council (9-11 December 2014and 9-11 February 2015), the draft Constitution will reach an advanced stage of preparation, making it possible for the Pope to proceed with further consultations”.
With regard to the Commission for the Protection of Minors, the director of the Holy See Press Office commented that the appointment of the Secretary, Msgr. Robert Oliver, had been made public during recent days, adding: “In the next few weeks other very important aspects will be specified regarding the Statutes and further members of the Commission. It is expected that these will be clarified at the time of the next meeting of the Commission itself, scheduled for early October (4-5)”.
“With regard to the Commission on Vatican media, chaired by Lord Chris Patten, the first meeting will be held from 22-24 September at the Domus Sanctae Marthae. As a first meeting, it will be dedicated primarily to drawing up a framework for the common base of information necessary to enable the work of the members (several of whom are from contexts external to the Vatican), the planning of the work to be done over the coming months, and the method to be used. The Commission itself, during its first meeting, will establish its own strategy of communication. Therefore, interviews or communications will not be given prior to the meeting”, he concluded.
“Evangelii gaudium” and pastoral ministry: three day meeting in the Vatican
Vatican City, 17 September 2014 (VIS) – The international meeting “The Pastoral Project of 'Evangelii gaudium'”, organised by the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelisation, will be held in the Vatican from 18 to 20 September and will be attended by more than two thousand pastoral workers from seventy countries worldwide. Bishops, priests, catechists, consecrated persons, pastoral workers and members of associations and movements will explore in depth the content of the apostolic Exhortation that Pope Francis has indicated as the programmatic document of his papacy. Renowned speakers will discuss specific themes in relation to pastoral ministry and evangelisation. The meeting will culminate with an encounter with the Holy Father on Friday afternoon.
A detailed programme of the event can be found at www.novaevangelizatio.va

Presentation of the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, 2015
Vatican City, 16 September 2014 (VIS) – This morning in the Holy See Press Office, Archbishops Vincenzo Paglia, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family and Charles Joseph Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., of Philadelphia, U.S.A., presented the World Meeting of Families on the theme “Love is our mission: the family fully alive”, which will take place in the North American city from 22 to 27 September 2015.
In his presentation Archbishop Chaput commented on Philadelphia's deep religious roots and expressed his hope that Pope Francis may be present at next year's meeting, at which between ten and fifteen thousand people from all over the world are expected to attend. He also explained that the theme of the Meeting was based on St. Irenaeus' famous words, “the Glory of God is man fully alive”. “In like manner, the glory of men and women is their capacity to love as God loves. Life in a family is a summons to embody that love in everyday life”.
The event in Philadelphia will be accompanied by an official document, a catechesis that “will help parish and diocesan leaders, catechists and other interested persons prepare Catholics across the globe for next year's meeting. … It develops its teaching in ten simple steps. It starts with the purpose of our creation and moves into the nature of our sexuality; the covenant of marriage; the importance of children; the place of priesthood and religious life in the ecology of the Christian community; the Christian home as a refuge for the wounded heart; the role of the Church; and the missionary witness of Christian families to the wider world”.
“The text gives us a foundation for all of the different programming that will go into the World Meeting of Families”, continued Archbishop Chaput, “from major talks, to panels and breakout sessions, to family entertainment throughout the event. The text is currently available in English and Spanish. Portuguese, French and other language editions are planned this fall through the efforts of the Pontifical Council for the Family. The catechesis also includes the special prayer we commissioned to prepare for the 2015 gathering”.
In addition, a specially-commissioned oil painting will be displayed in Philadelphia's Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul throughout the World Meeting. By the artist Neil Carlin, it represents the Holy Family – Jesus, Mary and Joseph – along with Mary's parents, Sts. Anne and Joachim. “They are a reminder that, today and throughout history, the Christian family includes both the young and the elderly; it reaches beyond parents and child to include grandparents and many other extended relations”.
Archbishop Paglia presented the events that will be organised by his dicastery this year and the next, in relation to the theme of the family. On 18 September, with the collaboration of Caritas International, a seminar will be held on “Family and poverty”, in which it 150 experts on the theme are expected to participate. On 28 September, with the theme “The blessing of longevity”, the elderly and grandparents will meet with Pope Francis in St. Peter's Square. From 22 to 24 January 2015, an international congress of associations, movements and groups for the family and for life will meet with the aim of “Reviewing together the Extraordinary Synod on the Family”, and on 24 March, anniversary of the publication of St. John Paul II's encyclical “Evangelium vitae”, a prayer vigil will be held in the Roman basilica of St. Mary Major.
Finally, the president of the Pontifical Council for the Family reported that every day until the opening of the Synod (5 October) on the site www.familia.va, there will be a special edition of “Jarà – the spectacle of life”, which will present through words and images the main themes of the Synod and explain how they figure in the Instrumentum Laboris. During the assembly there will be a weekly note presenting and summarising the work of the Synod fathers. All this will be supplemented with exclusive interviews with bishops and experts.
Appointments to the IOR Board of Superintendence finalised
Vatican City, 16 September 2014 (VIS) – The Commission of Cardinals for the Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR) has appointed Mauricio Larrain (Chile) and Carlo Salvatori (Italy) as members of the IOR Board of Superintendence, according to a press release published by the Institute today.
On the occasion of the nomination Cardinal Santos Abril y Castello, President of the IOR’s Supervisory Commission of Cardinals, said: “The IOR is looking forward to working with these two new board members who will add significant financial experience and global perspective at a time when the role of IOR is being reinforced and confirmed to meet the objectives of the Holy Father.” With these appointments, the IOR Board of Superintendence is now complete. Besides Mauricio Larrain and Carlo Salvatori, it is composed of Mr. Jean-Baptiste de Franssu (France), President of the Board, Mr. Clemens Boersig (Germany), Prof. Mary Ann Glendon (USA) and Sir Michael Hintze (UK), who assumed office on 9 July 2014. In addition to these six lay members of the Board, Monsignor Alfred Xuereb, Secretary-General of the Secretariat for the Economy, serves as its non-voting Secretary.
As set out in the Institute’s revised Statute from 1990, the IOR Board of Superintendence defines strategy and ensures oversight of operations. The members of the Board of Superintendence are nominated in accordance with the new legal framework and for a period of five years. The nomination of a non-voting Secretary and a sixth member to the IOR Board of Superintendence as well as the nomination of a sixth member to the IOR Cardinals’ Commission will be formalised upon completion of the current review of the Institute’s Statute.
Mauricio Larrain is external director of Santander Bank Group Chile and general director of the ESE Business School from the Los Andes University of Chile. He served as the Santander Bank Group Chile’s Chairman and General Director from 1992 until 2014 and was president of Santander Chile Holding S.A. And Universita Chile S.A. from 2000 until 2014. During this period, Santander Bank Group Chile was chosen as the Best Bank in Latin America in six different years by the America Economia Magazine.
Carlo Salvatori has served as president of the investment bank Lazard Italy since June 2010 and of the insurance company Allianz SpA since May 2012. Furthermore, he is amember of the Board of Directors of the Sacred Heart Catholic University, of the Bambino Gesu Children’s Hospital, of Chiesi Pharmaceuticals and of the Riso Gallo Group and he also is President of the Christian Union of Business Executives’ Milanese section.
The Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR) was founded on 27 June, 1942, by papal decree to serve the Holy See and its customers in the Catholic Church all over the world. Its origins date back to the "Commissione ad Pias Causas" established in 1887 by Pope Leo XIII. The IOR’s purpose is set by its Statute, amended by Pope John Paul II in 1990, and related by-laws. It is “to provide for the custody and administration of goods transferred or entrusted to the Institute by physical or juridical persons, designated for religious works or charity. The Institute can accept deposits of assets from entities or persons of the Holy See and of the Vatican City State”.
The IOR strives to serve the global mission of the Catholic Church by protecting and increasing the patrimony of and providing worldwide payment services to the Holy See and related entities, religious orders, other Catholic institutions, clergy, employees of the Holy See and the accredited diplomatic corps. As of 31 December 2013, the IOR was entrusted with customers’ assets (including deposits, assets held in custody and assets held under portfolio management agreements) totalling EUR 5.9bn, and shareholders’ equity of EUR 720m. The IOR is situated exclusively on the sovereign territory of the Vatican City State, and is supervised and regulated by the "Autorità di Informazione Finanziaria" (AIF), the financial supervisory body for the Vatican City State.
The Pontifical Sistine Chapel Choir to sing in Macao, Hong Kong and Taipei
Vatican City, 16 September 2014 (VIS) – The Pontifical Sistine Chapel Choir is to perform for the first time in Macao, Hong Kong and Taipei. The concerts will be made possible through the Hong Kong Institute for Promotion of Chinese Culture, in collaboration with the Coro Perosi of the Diocese of Macao and the Taipei Philharmonic Foundation. By sharing the rich musical traditions of East and West, these concerts aim to promote cultural exchange through art and music, thereby creating new channels of communication and communion.
The concerts, entitled “Reverberating Heavenly Tunes in Greater China”, will include pieces from notable composers such as Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Orlando di Lasso, Gregorio Allegri and Lorenzo Perosi, whose works historically form part of the repertoire of papal celebrations.
The concerts will take place on 19 September 2014 at 6 p.m. in the Cathedral of Macao; 21 September at 8 p.m. at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre; and 23 September at 7:30 p.m. at the National Concert Hall in Taipei.
In addition, on 21 September at 11 a.m. in the Cathedral of Hong Kong the Sistine Choir will assist, with the authorisation of the Cardinal Secretary of State, at the Sunday celebration of the Eucharist, at which Cardinal John Tong Hon will preside.
The Pontifical Sistine Music Chapel Choir (Sistine Choir), which has its origins in the former Roman Schola Cantorum, has for centuries preserved the musical traditions of the Church and is composed of trained vocal musicians who sing at Papal liturgies and at other celebrations convoked by the Holy Father.

The Pope to render homage to martyrs of faith in Albania
Vatican City, 15 September 2014 (VIS) – Homage to martyrs of faith, victims of the communist regime, the importance of dialogue with Islam in a country with a Muslim majority but with a notable Christian presence, both Catholic and Orthodox, and the memory of blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, born in Albania, will be the fundamental themes that Pope Francis will address in his upcoming trip to the capital Tirana next Sunday, 21 September, said Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J., director of the Holy See Press Office, in a press conference held this morning.
The apostolic trip to Albania is Pope Francis' first in a European country outside Italy and the fourth of his pontificate.
Sixth meeting of the Council of Cardinals
Vatican City, 15 September 2014 (VIS) – The sixth meeting of the Council of Cardinals with the Holy Father began this morning, and will continue during the days of 16 and 17 September. The Council of Cardinals was instituted by Pope Francis to assist in the governance of the universal Church and to draw up a plan for the revision of the apostolic constitution “Pastor bonus” on the Roman Curia.
Francis marries twenty couples from the diocese of Rome
Vatican City, 14 September 2014 (VIS) – This morning, Pope Francis celebrated the marriage of twenty couples from Rome, the diocese of which he is bishop, during a Holy Mass celebrated in St. Peter's Basilica. The cardinal vicar of Rome, Agostino Vallini, and Archbishop Filippo Iannone, vice-regent and director of the diocesan Centre for Family Pastoral, concelebrated with the Pontiff.
The couples married by the Pope, according to a press release from the Vicariate of Rome, are like many others, engaged for different lengths of time; some already live together, others have children, and others met within the parish. The youngest couple were born in 1986 and 1989 respectively, whereas the eldest were born in 1958 and 1965.
In his homily, the Holy Father, commenting on the Bible passage that speaks of the long and wearisome journey of the people of Israel through the desert, spoke of marriage as a path with areas of light and shadows, during which the mercy and grace of Christ can regenerate and channel married and family life.
“Today’s first reading speaks to us of the people’s journey through the desert”, he began. “We can imagine them as they walked, led by Moses; they were families: fathers, mothers, sons and daughters, grandparents, men and women of all ages, accompanied by many children and the elderly who struggled to make the journey. This people reminds us of the Church as she makes her way across the desert of the contemporary world, reminds us of the People of God composed, for the most part, of families.
“This makes us think of families, our families, walking along the paths of life with all their day to day experiences. It is impossible to quantify the strength and depth of humanity contained in a family: mutual help, educational support, relationships developing as family members mature, the sharing of joys and difficulties. Families are the first place in which we are formed as persons and, at the same time, the 'bricks' for the building up of society.
“Let us return to the biblical story. At a certain point, 'the people became impatient on the way'. They are tired, water supplies are low and all they have for food is manna, which, although plentiful and sent by God, seems far too meagre in a time of crisis. And so they complain and protest against God and against Moses: 'Why did you make us leave?'. They are tempted to turn back and abandon the journey.
“Here our thoughts turn to married couples who 'become impatient on the way', the way of conjugal and family life. The hardship of the journey causes them to experience interior weariness; they lose the flavour of matrimony and they cease to draw water from the well of the Sacrament. Daily life becomes burdensome, and often, even 'nauseating'. During such moments of disorientation – the Bible says – poisonous serpents come and bite the people, and many die. This causes the people to repent and to turn to Moses for forgiveness, asking him to beseech the Lord so that he will cast out the snakes. Moses prays to the Lord, and the Lord offers a remedy: a bronze serpent set on a pole; whoever looks at it will be saved from the deadly poison of the vipers.
“What is the meaning of this symbol? God does not destroy the serpents, but rather offers an 'antidote': by means of the bronze serpent fashioned by Moses, God transmits his healing strength, namely his mercy, which is more potent than the Tempter’s poison.
“As we have heard in the Gospel, Jesus identifies Himself with this symbol: out of love the Father 'has given' His only begotten Son so that men and women might have eternal life. Such immense love of the Father spurs the Son to become man, to become a servant and to die for us upon a cross. Out of such love, the Father raises up his Son, giving Him dominion over the entire universe. This is expressed by Saint Paul in his hymn in the Letter to the Philippians. Whoever entrusts himself to Jesus crucified receives the mercy of God and finds healing from the deadly poison of sin.
“The cure which God offers the people applies also, in a particular way, to spouses who 'have become impatient on the way' and who succumb to the dangerous temptation of discouragement, infidelity, weakness, abandonment. To them too, God the Father gives His Son Jesus, not to condemn them, but to save them: if they entrust themselves to Him, He will bring them healing by the merciful love which pours forth from the Cross, with the strength of His grace that renews and sets married couples and families once again on the right path.
“The love of Christ, which has blessed and sanctified the union of husband and wife, is able to sustain their love and to renew it when, humanly speaking, it becomes lost, wounded or worn out. The love of Christ can restore to spouses the joy of journeying together. This is what marriage is all about: man and woman walking together, wherein the husband helps his wife to become ever more a woman, and wherein the woman has the task of helping her husband to become ever more a man. This is the task that you both share. 'I love you, and for this love I help you to become ever more a woman'; 'I love you, and for this love I help you to become ever more a man'. Here we see the reciprocity of differences. The path is not always a smooth one, free of disagreements, otherwise it would not be human. It is a demanding journey, at times difficult, and at times turbulent, but such is life! Within this theology which the word of God offers us concerning the people on a journey, spouses on a journey, I would like to give you some advice. It is normal for husband and wife to argue: it’s normal. It always happens. But my advice is this: never let the day end without having first made peace. Never! A small gesture is sufficient. Thus the journey may continue. Marriage is a symbol of life, real life: it is not 'fiction'! It is the Sacrament of the love of Christ and the Church, a love which finds its proof and guarantee in the Cross. My desire for you is that you have a good journey, a fruitful one, growing in love. I wish you happiness. There will be crosses! But the Lord is always there to help us move forward. May the Lord bless you!”.
Angelus: the Cross restores hope
Vatican City, 14 September 2014 (VIS) – At midday today, after celebrating the marriage of twenty couples from the diocese of Rome, the Pope appeared at the window of his study to pray the Angelus with the faithful present in St. Peter's Square.
Pope Francis commented that today, 14 September, the Church celebrates the festivity of the Exaltation of the Cross. “Any non-Christian might ask, why 'exalt' the Cross? We can answer that we do not exalt just any cross, or all crosses: we exalt Jesus Cross, as it was upon the Cross that he revealed the extent of God's love for humanity”, he explained. “The Father gave his Son to save us, and this involved the death of Jesus, and he died on the Cross. Why? Why was the Cross necessary? Because of the gravity of the evil that had enslaved us. The Cross of Jesus expresses both of these things: all the negative force of evil, and all the gentle omnipotence of God's mercy. The Cross appeared to decree Jesus' demise, but in reality it marked His victory. … And it is precisely for this reason that God 'exalted' Jesus, conferring upon Him a universal kingship”.
“When we turn our gaze to the Cross, where Jesus was nailed”, he continued, “we contemplate the sign of God's infinite love for each one of us, and the root of our salvation. From this Cross there springs the mercy of the Father who embraces the entire world. Through the Cross, the evil one is vanquished and death defeated, we are given life, and hope is restored to us. … The Cross of Jesus is our only true hope! This is why the Chruch exalts the glorious Cross of Jesus, sign of God's immense love, sign of our salvation, and path to the Resurrection. And this is our hope”.
“When we contemplate and celebrate the Holy Cross”, he concluded, “we think with emotion of our many brothers and sisters who are persecuted and killed for their fidelity to Christ. This happens especially where religious freedom is not guaranteed or fully realised. It also occurs, however, in countries and in environments where in principle freedom and human rights are protected, but where in practice believers and Christians in particular often encounter limitations or discrimination. Therefore, today we remember them and pray especially for them”.
Humanity still has not learnt that war is madness
Vatican City, 14 September 2014 (VIS) – Following today's Marian prayer, the Holy Father mentioned that tomorrow the Security Council of the United Nations begins peacekeeping mission in the Central African Republic, to promote peace and protect the civil population that is suffering the consequences of a long-standing conflict.
“I assure the peacekeepers of the support and prayer of the Catholic Church, and encourage the efforts of the international community to come to the aid of Central Africans of good will. May the violence give way to dialogue as soon as possible, and may the opposing forces set aside their particular interests and make the necessary provisions to ensure that every citizen, of every ethnic and religious group, may collaborate in constructing the common good. May the Lord accompany this work for peace!”, he exclaimed.
The Pope went on to speak about his visit on Saturday to the Austro-Hungarian cemetery and the military monument of Redipuglia, Italy, where he prayed for those who lost their lives in the First World War. “The figures are frightening: around eight million fallen soldiers and around seven million civilians killed. This shows us what madness war is! A madness from which humanity still has not learnt its lesson: it was followed by another world war soon after, and many others that are still in progress. When will we learn this lesson? I invite everyone to look to the Crucified Jesus to understand that hatred and evil must be met with forgiveness and goodness, to understand that the solution of war leads only to more evil and death!”
Cardinal Aguilar to take possession of his titular church
Vatican City, 2014 (VIS) – The Office of Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff today announced that on Sunday, 21 September, at 11 a.m., Cardinal Fernando Sebastian Aguilar, archbishop emeritus of Pamplona y Tudela, Spain, will take possession of the title of Sant'Angela Merici (Via di Sant'Angela Merici, 57).
Audiences
Vatican City, 2014 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father received in audience Daniel Ruben Herrera Piedrabuena, federal judge of La Rioja, with his wife and entourage.
Other Pontifical Acts
Vatican City, 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father has appointed Msgr. Marcus Stock as bishop of Leeds (area 5,033, population 2,068,000, Catholics 157,766, priests 182, permanent deacons 24, religious 149), England. The bishop-elect was born in London, England in 1961 and was ordained a priest in 1988. He studied theology at Oxford University and dogmatic theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University. He has served in a number of pastoral roles, including parish priest of “St. Birinus” in Dorchester-on-Thames, “St. Peter's” in Bloxwich, and Coleshill, and director of Catholic schools for the archdiocese of Birmingham. He is currently secretary general of the Episcopal Conference of England and Wales and advisor to the Heythrop College Faculty of Theology, London. In 2011 he was nominated Prelate of Honour of His Holiness.

Other Pontifical Acts
Vatican City, 13 September 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father has:
- appointed the following as members of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples: Cardinal George Pell, prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy; Cardinal Timothy Michael Dolan, archbishop of New York, U.S.A.; Cardinal Luis Antonio G. Tagle, archbishop of Manila, Philippines; Cardinal Jean-Pierre Kutwa, archbishop of Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire; Cardinal Orani Joao Tempesta, archbishop of Sao Sebastiao do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, secretary general of the Synod of Bishops; Archbishop Agostino Marchetto, secretary emeritus of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples; Archbishop Luigi Travaglino, apostolic nuncio to the Principality of Monaco, Holy See Permanent Observer at the United Nations Organisations and Organisms for Food and Agriculture; Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications; Archbishop Ignatius Suharyo Hardjoatmodjo of Jakarta, Indonesia; Archbishop Patrick Christopher Pinder of Nassau, Bahamas; Archbishop Dieudonne Nzapalainga of Bangui, Central African Republic; Archbishop Giampiero Gloder, president of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy; Archbishop Paul Bui Van Doc of Thanh-Pho Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam; Bishop Tarcisius Isai Kikuchi of Niigata, Japan; Bishop Celmo Lazzari, apostolic vicar of San Miguel de Sucumbios, Ecuador; Fr. Michael Anthony Perry, O.F.M., minister general of the Order of Friars Minor; Fr. Louis Lougen, O.M.I., superior general of the Oblate Missionaries of Mary Immaculate; Socrates Mesiona, director general of the PP.OO.MM. In the Philippines; Sister Luzia Premoli, S.M.C., superior general of the Combonian Missionaries,
- appointed the following as consultors of the same Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples: Archbishop Jorge Carlos Patron Wong, bishop emeritus of Paplanta, Mexico, secretary for seminaries of the Congregation for the Clergy; and Bishop Juan Ignacio Arrieta Ochoa de Chinchetru, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts.

Pope Francis The word catholic signifies that she is universal. This means that the Church is found everywhere... Angelus Text/Video


Pope Francis at General Audience
17/09/

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis encouraged Catholics go forth and bring the Gospel message to the world and to their communities.
Speaking on Wednesday during his General Audience the Pope spoke of the universal and apostolic nature of the Catholic Church.Pope Francis explained that the word catholic means that she is universal, something that she shows by speaking all languages, which – he said – is the effect of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit gave to the Apostles and the whole Church the gift of proclaiming the Good News of God’s salvation and love to all, even to the ends of the earth.
And, speaking off-the-cuff to those present in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis said we should all carry with us a “pocket” Gospel, so we can dip into it during the day that – he said – is a good thing to do.
The Pope also highlighted the missionary nature of the Catholic Church which – he said - is called to show the tenderness and power of God.
Turning his attention to the many missionaries the Church is blessed with, he said the Holy Spirit compels us to encounter our brothers and sisters, even those most distant from us, and to share with them God’s message of love, peace and joy.
Ours – Pope Francis said – is a Church that goes forth, impelled by the life-giving breath of the Spirit.
And speaking of the heroic lives of many missionaries who have left their homelands and have gone forth to proclaim the Gospel in distant lands, he recalled his conversations with a Brazilian Cardinal who has worked at length in the Amazon area. The Pope revealed that, when possible, the Cardinal goes to visit a cemetery in the Amazon where many missionaries are buried: “these brothers and sisters could all be canonized now” he said.
Thanking the Lord for the Church’s many missionaries; the Pope said “perhaps amongst the many young people present today in the Square there is someone who would like to become a missionary. May he go forth!” The Pope said, “This is good and courageous”.            
Please find below the official synopsis of the Pope’s catechesis:
Dear Brothers and Sisters: When we profess the Creed, we affirm that the Church is catholic and apostolic.  The word catholic signifies that she is universal.  This means that the Church is found everywhere and teaches the whole truth regarding the heavens and the earth.  The Church shows her catholicity by speaking all languages which is the effect of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit gave to the Apostles and the whole Church the gift of proclaiming the Good News of God’s salvation and love to all, even to the ends of the earth.  The Church then is of her nature missionary, given to evangelization and encounter; that is, she is apostolic.  Founded on the Apostles and in continuity with them, the Church is called to proclaim the Gospel to everyone, and to show the tenderness and power of God.  This too flows from Pentecost.  It is the Holy Spirit who prevents us from being self-absorbed, of thinking that the blessings of God are for us alone.  Rather, the Spirit compels us to encounter our brothers and sisters, even those most distant from us in every way, to share with them the love, peace, and joy of the Risen Lord.  May we always live in solidarity with all of humanity, and never closed in on ourselves.  May we go out, in communion with the Successors of the Apostles, to announce Christ and his love to all.  And may we always be a sign of the Church our Mother: holy, catholic and apostolic.  Shared from Radio Vaticana

Today's Mass Readings : Wednesday September 17, 2014

Wednesday of the Twenty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 445

Reading 11 COR 12:31-13:13

Brothers and sisters:
Strive eagerly for the greatest spiritual gifts.

But I shall show you a still more excellent way.

If I speak in human and angelic tongues
but do not have love,
I am a resounding gong or a clashing cymbal.
And if I have the gift of prophecy
and comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge;
if I have all faith so as to move mountains,
but do not have love, I am nothing.
If I give away everything I own,
and if I hand my body over so that I may boast
but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind.
It is not jealous, love is not pompous,
it is not inflated, it is not rude,
it does not seek its own interests,
it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury,
it does not rejoice over wrongdoing
but rejoices with the truth.
It bears all things, believes all things,
hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails.
If there are prophecies, they will be brought to nothing;
if tongues, they will cease;
if knowledge, it will be brought to nothing.
For we know partially and we prophesy partially,
but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away.
When I was a child, I used to talk as a child,
think as a child, reason as a child;
when I became a man, I put aside childish things.
At present we see indistinctly, as in a mirror,
but then face to face.
At present I know partially;
then I shall know fully, as I am fully known.
So faith, hope, love remain, these three;
but the greatest of these is love.

Responsorial Psalm PS 33:2-3, 4-5, 12 AND 22

R. (12) Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.
Give thanks to the LORD on the harp;
with the ten stringed lyre chant his praises.
Sing to him a new song;
pluck the strings skillfully, with shouts of gladness.
R. Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.
For upright is the word of the LORD,
and all his works are trustworthy.
He loves justice and right;
of the kindness of the LORD the earth is full.
R. Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.
Blessed the nation whose God is the LORD,
the people he has chosen for his own inheritance.
May your kindness, O LORD, be upon us
who have put our hope in you.
R. Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.

Gospel LK 7:31-35

Jesus said to the crowds:
“To what shall I compare the people of this generation?
What are they like?
They are like children who sit in the marketplace and call to one another,

‘We played the flute for you, but you did not dance.
We sang a dirge, but you did not weep.’

For John the Baptist came neither eating food nor drinking wine,
and you said, ‘He is possessed by a demon.’
The Son of Man came eating and drinking and you said,
‘Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard,
a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’
But wisdom is vindicated by all her children.”

Saint September 17 : St. Robert Bellarmine : Patron of Catechists, Canon Lawyers and Catechumens : Doctor



St. Robert Bellarmine
DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH
Feast: September 17
Information:
Feast Day:
September 17
Born:
October 4, 1542, Montepulciano, Italy
Died:
September 17, 1621, Rome, Italy
Canonized:
June 29, 1930, Rome by Pope Pius XI
Major Shrine:
Chiesa di Sant'Ignazio, Rome, Italy
Patron of:
Preparatory; canonists; canon lawyers; catechists; catechumens

A distinguished Jesuit theologian, writer, and cardinal, born at Montepulciano, 4 October, 1542; died 17 September, 1621. His father was Vincenzo Bellarmino, his mother Cinthia Cervini, sister of Cardinal Marcello Cervini, afterwards Pope Marcellus II. He was brought up at the newly founded Jesuit college in his native town, and entered the Society of Jesus on 20 September, 1560, being admitted to his first vows on the following day. The next three years he spent in studying philosophy at the Roman College, after which he taught the humanities first at Florence, then at Mondovì. In 1567 he began his theology at Padua, but in 1569 was sent to finish it at Louvain, where he could obtain a fuller acquaintance with the prevailing heresies. Having been ordained there, he quickly obtained a reputation both as a professor and a preacher, in the latter capacity drawing to his pulpit both Catholics and Protestants, even from distant parts. In 1576 he was recalled to Italy, and entrusted with the chair of Controversies recently founded at the Roman College. He proved himself equal to the arduous task, and the lectures thus delivered grew into the work "De Controversiis" which, amidst so much else of excellence, forms the chief title to his greatness. This monumental work was the earliest attempt to systematize the various controversies of thetime, and made an immense impression throughout Europe, the blow it dealt to Protestantism being so acutely felt in Germany and England that special chairs were founded in order to provide replies to it. Nor has it even yet been superseded as the classical book on its subject-matter, though, as was to be expected, the progress ofcriticism has impaired the value of some of its historical arguments.
In 1588 Bellarmine was made Spiritual Father to the Roman College, but in 1590 he went with Cardinal Gaetano as theologian to the embassy Sixtus V was then sending into France to protect the interests of the Church amidst the troubles of the civil wars. Whilst he was there news reached him that Sixtus, who had warmly accepted the dedication of his "De Controversiis", was now proposing to put its first volume on the Index. This was because he had discovered that it assigned to the Holy See not a direct but only an indirect power over temporals. Bellarmine, whose loyalty to the Holy See was intense, took this greatly to heart; it was, however, averted by the death of Sixtus, and the new pope, Gregory XIV, even granted to Bellarmine's work the distinction of a special approbation. Gaetano's mission now terminating, Bellarmine resumed his work as Spiritual Father, and had the consolation of guiding the last years of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, who died in the Roman College in 1591. Many years later he had the further consolation of successfully promoting the beatification of the saintly youth. Likewise at this time he sat on the final commission for the revision of the Vulgate text. This revision had been desired by the Council of Trent, and subsequent popes had laboured over the task and had almost brought it to completion. But Sixtus V, though unskilled in this branch of criticism, had introduced alterations of his own, all for the worse. He had even gone so far as to have an impression of this vitiated edition printed and partially distributed, together with the proposed Bull enforcing its use. He died, however, before the actual promulgation, and his immediate successors at once proceeded to remove the blunders and call in the defective impression. The difficulty was how to substitute a more correct edition without affixing a stigma to the name of Sixtus, and Bellarmine proposed that the new edition should continue in the name of Sixtus, with a prefatory explanation that, on account of aliqua vitia vel typographorum vel aliorum which had crept in, Sixtus had himself resolved that a new impression should be undertaken. The suggestion was accepted, and Bellarmine himself wrote the preface, still prefixed to the Clementine edition ever since in use. On the other hand, he has been accused of untruthfulness in stating that Sixtus had resolved on a new impression. But his testimony, as there is no evidence to the contrary, should be accepted as decisive, seeing howconscientious a man he was in the estimation of his contemporaries; and the more so since it cannot be impugned without casting a slur on thecharacter of his fellow-commissioners who accepted his suggestion, and of Clement VIII who with full knowledge of the facts gave his sanction to Bellarmine's preface being prefixed to the new edition. Besides, Angelo Rocca, the Secretary of the revisory commissions of Sixtus V and the succeeding pontiffs, himself wrote a draft preface for the new edition in which he makes the same statement: (Sixtus) "dum errores ex typographiâ ortos, et mutationes omnes, atque varias hominum opiniones recognoscere cœpit, ut postea de toto negotio deliberare atque Vulgatam editionem, prout debebat, publicare posset, morte præventus quod cœperat perficere non potuit". This draft preface, to which Bellarmine's was preferred, is still extant, attached to the copy of the Sixtine edition in which the Clementine corrections are marked, and may be seen in the Biblioteca Angelica at Rome.
In 1592 Bellarmine was made Rector of the Roman College, and in 1595 Provincial of Naples. In 1597 Clement VIII recalled him to Rome and made him his own theologian and likewise Examiner of Bishops and Consultor of the Holy Office. Further, in 1599 he made him Cardinal-Priest of the title of Santa Maria in viâ, alleging as his reason for this promotion that "the Church of God had not his equal in learning". He was now appointed, along with the Dominican Cardinal d'Ascoli, an assessor to Cardinal Madruzzi, the President of the Congregation de Auxiliis, which had been instituted shortly before to settle the controversy which had recently arisen between the Thomists and the Molinists concerning the nature of the concord between efficacious grace and human liberty. Bellarmine's advice was from the first that the doctrinal question should not be decided authoritatively, but left over for further discussion in the schools, the disputants on either side being strictly forbidden to indulge in censures or condemnations of their adversaries. Clement VIII at first inclined to this view, but afterwards changed completely and determined on a doctrinal definition. Bellarmine's presence then became embarrassing, and he appointed him to the Archbishopric of Capua just then vacant. This is sometimes spoken of as the cardinal's disgrace, but Clement consecrated him with his own hands--an honour which the popes usually accord as a mark of special regard. The new archbishop departed at once for his see, and during the next three years set a bright example of pastoral zeal in its administration.
In 1605 Clement VIII died, and was succeeded by Leo XI who reigned only twenty-six days, and then by Paul V. In both conclaves, especially that latter, the name of Bellarmine was much before the electors, greatly to his own distress, but his quality as a Jesuit stood against him in the judgment of many of the cardinals. The new pope insisted on keeping him at Rome, and the cardinal, obediently complying, demanded that at least he should be released from an episcopal charge the duties of which he could no longer fulfil. He was now made a member of the Holy Office and of other congregations, and thenceforth was the chief advisor of the Holy See in the theological department of its administration. Of the particular transactions with which his name is most generally associated the following were the most important: The inquiry de Auxiliis, which after all Clement had not seen his way to decide, was now terminated with a settlement on the lines of Bellarmine's original suggestion. 1606 marked the beginning of the quarrel between the Holy See and the Republic of Venice which, without even consulting the pope, had presumed to abrogate the law of clerical exemption from civil jurisdiction and to withdraw the Church's right to hold real property. The quarrel led to a war of pamphlets in which the part of the Republic was sustained by John Marsiglio and an apostate monk named Paolo Sarpi, and that of the Holy See by Bellarmine and Baronius. Contemporaneous with the Venetian episode was that of the English Oath of Alliance. In 1606, in addition to the grave disabilities which already weighed them down, the English Catholics were required under pain of prœmunire to take an oath of allegiance craftily worded in such wise that a Catholic in refusing to take it might appear to be disavowing an undoubted civl obligation, whilst if he should take it he would be not merely rejecting but even condemning as "impious and heretical" the doctrine of the deposing power, that is to say, of a power, which, whether rightly or wrongly, the Holy See had claimed and exercised for centuries with the full approval of Christendom, and which even in that age the mass of the theologians of Europe defended. The Holy See having forbidden Catholics to take this oath, King James himself came forward as its defender, in a book entitled "Tripoli nodo triplex cuneus", to which Bellarmine replied in his "Responsio Matthfi Torti". Other treatises followed on either side, and the result of one, written in denial of the deposing power by William Barclay, an English jurist resident in France, was that Bellarmine's reply to it was branded by the Regalist Parlement of Paris. Thus it came to pass that, for following the via media of the indirect power, he was condemned in 1590 as too much of a Regalist and in 1605 as too much of a Papalist.
Bellarmine did not live to deal with the later and more serious stage of the Galileo case, but in 1615 he took part in its earlier stage. He had always shown great interest in the discoveries of that investigator, and was on terms of friendly correspondence with him. He took up too--as is witnessed by his letter to Galileo's friend Foscarini--exactly the right attitude towards scientific theories in seeming contradiction with Scripture. If, as was undoubtedly the case then with Galileo's heliocentric theory, a scientific theory is insufficiently proved, it should be advanced only as an hypothesis; but if, as is the case with this theory now, it is solidly demonstrated, care must be taken to interpretScripture only in accordance with it. When the Holy Office condemned the heliocentric theory, by an excess in the opposite direction, it becameBellarmine's official duty to signify the condemnation to Galileo, and receive his submission. Bellarmine lived to see one more conclave, that which elected Gregory XV (February, 1621). His health was now failing, and in the summer of the same year he was permitted to retire to Sant' Andrea and prepare for the end. His death was most edifying and was a fitting termination to a life which had been no less remarkable for its virtues than for its achievements.
His spirit of prayer, his singular delicacy of conscience and freedom from sin, his spirit of humility and poverty, together with the disinterestedness which he displayed as much under the cardinal's robes as under the Jesuit's gown, his lavish charity to the poor, and his devotedness to work, had combined to impress those who knew him intimately with the feeling that he was of the number of the saints. Accordingly, when he died there was a general expectation that his cause would be promptly introduced. And so it was, under Urban VIII in 1627, when he became entitled to the appellation of Venerable. But a technical obstacle, arising out of Urban VIII's own general legislation in regard to beatifications, required its prorogation at that time. Though it was reintroduced on several occasions (1675, 1714, 1752, and 1832), and though on each occasion the great preponderance of votes was in favour of the beatification, a successful issue came only after many years. This was partly because of the influential character of some of those who recorded adverse votes, Barbarigo, Casante, and Azzolino in 1675, and Passionei in 1752, but still more for reasons of political expediency, Bellarmine's name being closely associated with a doctrine of papal authority most obnoxious to the Regalist politicians of the French Court. "We have said", wrote Benedict XIV to Cardinal de Tencin, "in confidence to the General of the Jesuits that the delay of the Cause has come not from the petty matters laid to his charge by Cardinal Passionei, but from the sad circumstances of the times" (Études Religieuses, 15 April, 1896).
[Note: St. Robert Bellarmine was canonized by Pope Pius XI in 1930, and declared a Doctor of the Universal Church in 1931. He is the patron saint of catechists.]
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