Pope Francis’ address today, June 28, 2017, to a delegation from the Italian Confederation of Workers’ Unions (CISL) in the Vatican this morning, before his General Audience in St. Peter’s Square, on the occasion of the 18th National Congress on the theme: “For the Person, For Work” (June 28 – July 1, 2017).
According to its website, CISL is the second largest Confederation of Trade Unions in Italy. It is composed of 19 major National branch (sector) federations: e.g. metalworkers, chemical, textile workers, public employees, service, agricultural workers, etc., and 9 other, as we say, secondary Federations), and affiliates salaried, white and blue collar employees, through its branch or sector federations.read more
The Water-of Life Discourse Between Jesus and the Samaritan
Woman at the Well, by Angelika Kauffmann.
The Internet has now opened up as a wide field for our evangelization. Much of the cultural interchange now takes place via such electronic means. The Church is called to step out into every new forum and evangelize it, yet for the online forum what would mainly have is individual examples and not a systematic application of existing offline models into the online world.
As someone who has been involved in this world, I’ve seen a lot of people try, and some of them succeed. I built up a following of 40,000 on Twitter by understanding its dynamics, and realizing in what respects it is the same as, and different from, other methods of human communication. I was always a bit of a tech geek: in the 80s I was writing elementary book reports on an old Turbo XT, and even studied two years of computer engineering before switching to become a Catholic priest. I was into religious stuff online back in the mid to late nineties. I intuitively grasped different ways that people were evangelizing online. But upon recently reading a book on models of evangelization, I find I have a concrete schema to categorize the main ways in which I see this happening.read more
Why an Article on this Topic? It all began with a statement made by a student in a class I was teaching for our License in Sacred Theology (STL) Program at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. I was conducting a seminar on the stages of spiritual growth for a class made up entirely of priests. When we were working on the concept of what the scripture says about sins that will exclude us from entering the kingdom – mortal sins – one of the priests spoke up in class and said something quite remarkable, both for its honesty and for its implications for understanding some truths about culpability.read more
God’s desire is that we praise him and give him glory for all eternity. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is an act of praise and thanksgiving where we are invited to become consciously aware of everything God has done for us, and how our participation in the Mass is a preparation for our eternal life with him. The desire to praise and thank God is a desire which he himself has placed in our hearts. If we cooperate with his desire, then our hearts will be transformed, little by little, to reflect the image we are meant to become. It is succinctly described in the preface for the weekday mass where our praise adds nothing to God’s greatness as he is in no need of it. However, paradoxically, we need to praise him in order to grow in his grace. It is well said in Preface IV for Masses on Weekdays:read more
About six or seven years ago, I participated in the sacrament of reconciliation. (By the way, that was not my last time.) At the heart of my confession was the fact that I had recently been responding to my wife with “irritation” or “anger.” When it came time for my penance, the priest said to me, “For your penance, I’d like you to think of someone that you care about a lot, and I’d like you to do something special for that person.” He then said, “Can you and Jesus figure out who that person should be, and what you should do for them?” Let me quickly add here that his approach was perfect for me. The grace of God was palpable, as our heavenly Father knows exactly what we need, for this was not a face-to-face confession, and since I was then participating in a grandson’s first confession in preparation for his first communion, I was obviously going to confession with a priest whom I had never met, and did not know.read more
The Papal Coat of Arms and Statue of St. Peter Enthroned in St. Peter’s Basilica
It was not on accident that John chose to start his Gospel with the words “In the beginning…” A picture paints a thousand words, but in John’s case: three words painted with the power of a thousand reinforcing images. In three words, all the images of Genesis and the first creation were brought back to announce something greater. Those three famous words, “In the beginning,” were John’s declaration that God had begun a new creation; establishing new light, new waters, and a new earth in which his blessings would flow … all of them made possible through Jesus, the new man (Rom 5), the ultimate Adam (1 Cor 15:45-47), the new covenant. Just as Genesis opens with the announcement—“In the beginning…”—and the defining of the days of creation, so God’s establishment of his new creation—God with us as a man—heralded the defining of new days, and important new life-supporting structures.read more
Pentecostal Church Worshippers in Lagos and Cameroon
Most Catholics are unaware that the heart of global Christianity is moving south—into South America, Africa, and even to Asia.1 We who live in the global North are concerned primarily with the devastating decline of Catholicism due in part to the aggressive forces of secularization. Thus, it is easy to see growth and decline in terms of the rise and fall of Christianity in the north. But the growth of Christianity in the southern hemisphere is measured by the reasons why the Catholic Church is declining in the north. What we are witnessing in the south is an unprecedented growth of Pentecostal and charismatic churches that is so powerful that Catholics are leaving the Church to join them. Many Church leaders seem unaware of this problem. But to those who are, the startling growth of Pentecostalism in non-Western contexts “is amazing and/or frightening the rest of the Christian world.”2Catholics need take a hard and honest look at what is going on, and why, so that they can faithfully discern how to respond to the challenge it poses to the Church. In other words, the Church must understand what is going on in the global south, and why the Pentecostal and Charismatic churches are drawing so many people, in order to discern whether or not it can learn something about evangelization. To this end, this paper will (1) summarize the growth and future trends of Pentecostal-charismatic Christianity in the south; (2) explore briefly the spirituality at the root of rapid growth; and, (3) conclude by offering an orientation on how the Church can respond.read more
Mother: “All we’ve ever wanted is the chance for Charlie to try these drugs”
LONDON (ChurchMilitant.com) – A June 27 ruling from a European human rights court is forcing the English parents of a gravely ill baby to make their last, painful goodbyes to their son.
Chris Gard and Connie Yates have been in a legal battle over a potentially life-saving treatment for their son, Charlie, since October of 2016. Charlie Gard, was born with a rare genetic condition. They whole-heartedly believe an experimental treatment available in the United States will help him survive.
Their last legal battle was with the European Human Rights Court (EHRC), determining if they, as parents, have the right to continue to provide medical treatments for their son or if he should be allowed to die rather than continue in his condition as his doctors have recommended. The EHRC ruled Tuesday that the parents’ application is “inadmissible.” They believe Charlie is “being exposed to continued pain, suffering and distress,” and any additional treatment would “continue to cause Charlie significant harm.”read more
CNN Producer Revealing Russia Story Factless An undercover video shows John Bonifield admitting CNN had no proof. FULL STORY
Embattled Mali Bishop Vows to be at Ceremony Making Him a Cardinal Abp. Jean Zerbo is being accused of laundering 12 million euros through a Swiss bank account. FULL STORY
All-Ireland Rally for Life Expecting Huge Crowds The vast majority of Irish are still pro-life.FULL STORY
Consecrated Hosts Desecrated by Islamic Militia in the Philippines Cdl. of Cotabato condemning the destruction of Catholic Chapel of Malagakit as a “wicked desecration.”FULL STORYread more
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