Catholic News Headlines

Christians must convert to ecumenism, cardinal says

Catholic Register Canada - News - 1 hour 53 min ago
VATICAN – To be effective evangelizers, the Catholic Church and other Christian churches must constantly undergo their own conversion to a stronger commitment to Christian unity, said Cardinal Kurt Koch, the Vatican's chief ecumenist.

"So that the evangelizing task can be carried out in a credible way, the church itself continually needs a self-evangelization that includes conversion to the ecumenical search for Christian unity," the Swiss cardinal wrote in the Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano.

In preparation for the annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Jan. 18-25, Cardinal Koch's article focused on the connection between mission and Christian unity, a connection that gave birth to the ecumenical movement among Protestants more than 100 years ago and one that the Catholic Church has acknowledged since the Second Vatican Council.

"Witness to the love of God, which is an integral and fundamental part of Christian identity, must be given in an ecumenical communion," said Cardinal Koch, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

God sent his son into the world to save human beings and gather them back into one family, he said. The church, as a sacrament of unity, is called to work to re-establish its own unity and to draw others into the one family.

The church, Cardinal Koch said, can be the "sacrament of salvation for the world only if it does not offer the world the deplorable spectacle of its own division."

Irish bishop recalls Cranberries' musician for her faith, inspiration

Catholic Register Canada - News - 3 hours 57 min ago

DUBLIN – The Cranberries' frontwoman, Dolores O'Riordan, has been described as a woman of soul and courage by the bishop of Limerick, where she honed her musical talent at a Catholic school in the 1980s.


O'Riordan, 46, died suddenly Jan. 15 in London, where she had been due to record material for a new release. Police were investigating her death, calling it "unexplained."

Bishop Brendan Leahy of Limerick said her death "is such a sad loss of a young and precious life."

"Of course, she was a superstar and an inspiration to so many people, not least from Limerick," he said. Recalling that she grew up in the neighboring Archdiocese of Cashel and Emly, Bishop Leahy said, "Limerick city, all of Limerick, held her very dear in its heart.

"Her rise to stardom gave a huge amount of belief to young people locally at the time," the bishop said. "She never lost sight of who she was and where she was from."

Recalling her deep spirituality – her mother having named her in honour of Our Lady of the Seven Dolors, or Sorrows – Bishop Leahy said: "She also often spoke about her spirituality and how important that was too her and, of course, she met Pope John Paull II.


"She spoke of taking a lot of influence for her music from her spirituality. Limerick and the world has lost a kind, soft-hearted, talented soul," he said.

The O'Riordan family's parish priest, Father James Walton, said the family was devastated and the community was shocked.

"Nobody knows what to say -- there's wall-to-wall media coverage, but everyone here's just trying to get their own thoughts around it," he added.

O'Riordan frequently spoke about her Catholic faith and the importance of prayer in her life. Her mother had hoped her daughter would consider religious life, but while she chose a music career instead, she was still able to make one of her mother's dreams come true.

In a 2017 interview, she recalled how she "was invited to sing at the Vatican several times; it was a real honour."

"I was chuffed to see inside the place. But one of the best things was taking my mum to meet the late Pope John Paul II. She was blown away. He was such a good man, very kind and I loved him," she said.

O'Riordan's funeral is expected to take place in Limerick.

Pope in Temuco: You Cannot Assert Yourself by Destroying Others

Zenit News - English - 5 hours 3 min ago

You cannot assert yourself by destroying others, Pope Francis has said, decrying violence.

Pope Francis stressed this during the Mass for the Progress of the Peoples over which he presided in Temuco, Jan. 17, 2018, during his Apostolic Visit to Chile and Peru, Jan. 15-22.

Temuco, in the region of Araucanìa, home to a Chilean indigenous community, known as the Mapuche, some of whom were present at the Mass, welcoming the Pope in traditional garments and with song.

“Here,” the Pope said, “I would like to pause and greet in a special way the members of the Mapuche people, as well as the other indigenous peoples who dwell in these southern lands: the Rapanui (from Easter Island), the Aymara, the Quechua and the Atacameños, and many others.”

While noting how tourists likely would enjoy these beautiful lands, Francis recalled the “sorrow that cannot be silenced” there and “the injustices of centuries that everyone sees taking place.”

In the context of thanksgiving for this land and its people, but also of sorrow and pain, he said, we celebrate this Eucharist. “We do so in this Maquehue aerodrome, which was the site of grave violations of human rights.”

“We offer this Mass for all those who suffered and died, and for those who daily bear the burden of those many injustices. The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross bears all the sin and pain of our peoples, in order to redeem it.”

Reflecting on today’s Gospel according to St. John, when Jesus prays to the Father ‘that they may all be one,’ Francis noted that at a crucial moment in His own life, He stops to plea for unity.

“Today we want to cling to this prayer of Jesus, to enter with him into this garden of sorrows with those sorrows of our own, and to ask the Father, with Jesus, that we too may be one. May confrontation and division never gain the upper hand among us.”

One of the main temptations that must be resisted, the Pope said, is that of confusing unity with uniformity. He reminded that Jesus does not ask his Father that all may be equal or identical, for unity is not “meant to neutralize or silence differences,” nor “an idol or the result of forced integration,” nor “harmony bought at the price of leaving some people on the fringes.”

Rather, he highlighted, unity is a “reconciled diversity, for it will not allow personal or community wrongs to be perpetrated in its name.” Such unity, he stressed,  requires that everyone listens to one another, but even more importantly, that all esteem one another.

We cannot accept any means of attaining unity, if it is not to be built on esteem and solidarity, he said. For instance, two kinds of violence actually threaten unity and reconciliation, rather than encourage them, he said.

“First, we have to be on our guard against coming up with “elegant” agreements that will never be put into practice. Nice words, detailed plans – necessary as these are – but, when unimplemented, end up “erasing with the elbow, what was written by the hand”. This is one kind of violence, because it frustrates hope.”

Secondly, he stressed, we must insist that a culture of mutual esteem may not be based on acts of violence and destruction that end up taking human lives.

“You cannot assert yourself by destroying others, because this only leads to more violence and division. Violence begets violence, destruction increases fragmentation and separation. Violence eventually makes a most just cause into a lie. That is why we say “no to destructive violence” in either of its two forms.”

Those two approaches, he said, are “like the lava of a volcano that wipes out and burns everything in its path, leaving in its wake only barrenness and desolation.”

A path of “active non-violence,” he said, is needed “as a style of politics for peace”.

“Let us seek, and never tire of seeking, dialogue for the sake of unity,” he said, noting: “That is why we cry out: Lord, make us artisans of your unity.”

“All of us, to a certain extent, are people of the earth (cf. Gen 2:7). All of us are called to “the good life” (Küme Mongen), as the ancestral wisdom of the Mapuche people reminds us. How far we have to go, and how much we still have to learn! Küme Mongen, a deep yearning that not only rises up from our hearts, but resounds like a loud cry, like a song, in all creation.”

Pope Francis concluded, saying: Therefore, brothers and sisters, for the children of this earth, for the children of their children, let us say with Jesus to the Father: may we too be one; make us artisans of unity.

***

On ZENIT’s WEB PAGE:

Full Text: https://zenit.org/articles/popes-homily-during-mass-in-temuco-chile-full-text/

Pope’s Message for 800th Anniversary of Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy

Zenit News - English - 5 hours 38 min ago

Here is a ZENIT translation of the Message the Holy Father Francis sent to the Most Reverend Father Friar Juan Carlos Saavedra Lucho, Master General of the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy, on the occasion of the 800th anniversary of the Order of Mercy.

* * *

The Holy Father’s Message

To the Most Reverend Father Friar Juan Carlos Saavedra Lucho

Master General of the Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy

Dear Brother:

As the date draws near in which the Order of Mercy, and all those that unite themselves to it with spiritual bonds, remember the eighth centenary of the pontifical confirmation of this Institute by Pope Gregory IX, I wish to join you in your thanksgiving to the Lord for all the gifts received throughout this time. I wish to express to you my spiritual closeness, encouraging you so that this circumstance serves for your interior renewal and to boost the charism received, following the spiritual way that Christ the Redeemer traced for you.

The Lord makes Himself present in our life, showing us all His love and He encourages us to correspond to Him with generosity, this being the first commandment of the Holy People of God: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your might” (Deuteronomy 6:5). In preparation for this Jubilee Year, you wished to highlight three protagonists of your history, which can signify three moments of response to the love of God. The first is Saint Peter Nolasco, considered the Founder of the new community and the recipient of the charism given by God.

The heart and treasure of the Order is in that vocation, as both its tradition as well as the biography of each of the Religious is founded on that first love. In the Mercedarian Family’s rich patrimony, begun with the Founders and enriched by the members of the Community that have succeeded one another in the course of the centuries, the spiritual and material graces that you have received are brought together. This deposit becomes the expression of a history of love that is rooted in the past but that is incarnated especially in the present and opens to the future, in the gifts that the Spirit continues to shed on each one of you. One cannot love what one doesn’t know (Cf. Saint Augustine, Trinity, X, II, 4); therefore, I encourage you to deepen this foundation laid by Christ, outside of whom nothing can be built, rediscovering the first love of the Order and of one’s own vocation, to be continually renewed.

The second protagonist in this triptych is the Holy Virgin, Our Lady of Mercy or, as she is also called, of Remedy and Grace in our needs, which we entreat from God and trust in her powerful intercession. In the Hebrew original, the expression that we translate “you will love the Lord with all your soul” means “up to the last drop of our blood.” That is why Mary’s example is identified with this verse of the “Shema.” She proclaims herself “handmaid of the Lord,” and sets out “in haste” (Luke 1:38-39), to take the Good News of the Kingdom to her cousin Elizabeth. It is God’s answer to the people’s clamour awaiting deliverance (Cf. Exodus 3:7 and Luke 1:13). Thus she is teacher of consecration to God and to the people, in availability and service, in humility and simplicity and in prayer. It’s a commitment that recalls the sacrifice of the ancient redeemer fathers, who themselves remained as “hostages,” as pledge of the freedom of the captives. Therefore, I beg you that this resolution to be completely hers is reflected not only in avant-garde apostolic works, but in the daily and humble work of each Religious, as well as in the contemplative monasteries that, with prayerful silence and in hidden sacrifice, sustain maternally the life of the Order and of the Church.

The third protagonist that completes the picture of the history of the Institute is Christ the Redeemer. In Him we make a qualitative leap, as we pass from the disciples to the Master. As He did the rich young man, Jesus challenges us with a question that touches us profoundly: would you be perfect? (Cf. Matthew 19:21l 5:48). Theoretical knowledge is of no use, not even a sincere adherence to the precepts of the divine Law “since his youth” (Mark 10:20), but that Jesus looks at us in our eyes and loves us, asking us to leave it all to follow Him. Love is assayed in the fire of risk, in the capacity of putting all the cards on the table and betting strongly, for the hope that doesn’t defraud. However, often the personal and communal decisions that cost us most are those that affect our small and, sometimes, worldly securities. We are all called to live the joy that springs from the encounter with Jesus, to overcome our egoism, to come out of our  own comfort and to dare to go to the periphery, which needs the light of the Gospel (Cf. Evangelii Gaudium, 20). We can respond generously to the Lord, when we experience that we are loved by God despite our sin and our inconsistency.

Dear Brothers and Sisters, the Lord Jesus will show you a lovely way to follow Him with a renewed spirit. You will be able to have the gift received – personal and communal – grow, giving it and giving oneself completely, as the grain of wheat that can’t give fruit if it doesn’t die (Cf. John 12:24). I pray to the Lord to give you the strength to abandon what ties you and to assume your cross, so that throwing off your mantle and picking up your pallet  (Mark 10:50; 2:1-12) you can follow Him on the way and dwell in His house for ever.

Please, I beg you to pray for me. May Jesus bless all the members of the Order and the entire Mercedarian Family, and the Holy Virgin take care of you.

Fraternally,

Francis PP.

Vatican, December 6, 2017, Memorial of Saint Peter Pascual

[Original text: Spanish]  [ZENIT’s translation by Virginia M. Forrester]

President of the Polish Bishops on the Danger of Nationalism and the Beauty of Patriotism

Zenit News - English - 5 hours 46 min ago

“In contrast to nationalism – patriotism is an attitude worthy of cultivating”, wrote Archbishop Stanislaw Gadecki, President of the Polish Episcopate in a letter entitled “Nationalism and patriotism”, in which he draws the difference between these two concepts, on the occasion of the “XXI Day of Judaism in the Catholic Church in Poland”, celebrated on January 17, 2018, and in the year of the 100th anniversary of Poland’s regaining independence.

In the letter, the President of the Episcopate presents briefly four types of nationalism: integral, Christian, secular, neopagan and chauvinism, considered as an extreme form of nationalism. Their common feature is the belief that “the nation is the highest good”. Meanwhile, “the Catholic Church critically perceives nationalism, because putting the nation at the top of the hierarchy of values ​​can lead to some kind of idolatry”, notes the President of the Bishops’ Conference. Pope Pius XI warned against such a mistake in the Encyclical “Mit brennender Sorge” in 1937.

Archbishop Gadecki emphasizes that in contrast to nationalism – patriotism is an attitude worthy of cultivating. “The Christian lives deeply involved in the lives of individual nations and is a sign of the Gospel also in fidelity to his homeland, his nation, national culture, but always in the freedom which Christ brought to us (St. John Paul II, Redemptoris misio, 43), without feelings of reluctance towards other nations”, notes the President of the Polish Episcopate.

In recent years, the Conference of the Polish Episcopate has published two documents on the contemporary challenges of patriotism. In 2012, Polish bishops stressed that patriotism becomes an element of order and peace, when it is built on faith and the command to love one’s neighbor. Last year, The Christian shape of patriotism was published, in which the bishops draw attention to the fact that in the situation of deep political dispute that divides Poland, the patriotic duty also seems to be “commitment to the work on social reconciliation by reminding the truth about the dignity of every human being, relieving excessive political emotions, pointing and widening fields of possible and necessary for Poland cooperation over divisions and protection of public life against unnecessary politicization”.

The President of the Polish Episcopate also noted that in the context of the new generation of Polish national milieus that refer to the postulates of pre-war National Democracy, “in which on the one hand we have people with nationalistic views who follow the slogan ‘Poland [solely] for Poles’, on the other hand – people with patriotic views, it is needed further formation”, writes Archbishop Gadecki.

“I wish all my compatriots at home and abroad that the 100th anniversary of Poland’s independence strengthen in us the love of the homeland in the spirit of true patriotism”, writes the President of the Polish Episcopate.

Amid attacks on churches, Francis tells Chilean indigenous to shun violence

Natl Catholic Reporter - 6 hours 1 min ago
Temuco, Chile -- "Violence begets violence, destruction increases fragmentation and separation," Francis said in a homily during a Mass with 150,000 Mapuche, Rapanui, Aymara, Quechua, Atacameño, and other indigenous people gathered at Maqueue airfield.

Pope appeals for unity, non-violence in Chile's torn Mapuche zone

CNA General News - 6 hours 28 min ago

Temuco, Chile, Jan 17, 2018 / 07:08 am (CNA/EWTN News).- On Wednesday, Pope Francis celebrated Mass in Chile's largely indigenous Araucania region, long divided by violent conflict. He stressed the importance of unity, which he said cannot be achieved through violence or forced uniformity.

Pointing to Jesus' prayer that “they may all be one” at the end of John's Gospel, Pope Francis noted that it is at this “crucial moment” before his death that Jesus “stops to plea for unity.”

“In his heart, he knows that one of the greatest threats for his disciples and for all mankind will be division and confrontation, the oppression of some by others,” he said, and urged those present to take Jesus' words in the prayer to heart.

We must “enter with him into this garden of sorrows with those sorrows of our own, and to ask the Father, with Jesus, that we too may be one,” Francis said, and prayed that “confrontation and division never gain the upper hand among us.”

Pope Francis spoke during his Jan. 17 Mass in Chile's Araucania region in Temuco, which for years has been torn apart by violent conflict surrounding the plight of the area's Mapuche people, an indigenous group present largely in south-central Chile and southwestern Argentina.

He traveled to the region as part of his Jan. 15-18 visit to Chile, after which he will make an official visit to Peru from Jan. 18-21.

The largest indigenous group in Chile, the Mapuche resisted Spanish conquest during colonial times by using guerrilla warfare tactics to evade soldiers and maintain control of their land.

They continued to resist after Chilean independence in 1818, however, in the 1860s the military gained control, and the majority of their land was given over to members of the military and incoming immigrants.  

Despite the launch of some initiatives aimed at restoring parts of their land and the creation of scholarships for Mapuche students, the Mapuche live in one of the poorest areas of Chile and claim to be mistreated by authorities.

Some of the Mapuche have in recent years adopted violent means of protest, and have bombed trucks and land of non-Mapuche people they say are illegally inhabiting the area.

They have also set fire to churches, burning more than two dozen in 2016 and 2017, according to the Chilean prosecutor's office. Just last Friday three more churches were firebombed in the Chilean capital Santiago in protest of the Pope's visit.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attacks, and authorities are unsure whether Mapuche activists are to blame, however, leaflets criticizing the upcoming visit of Francis and calling for a “free” Mapuche nation were dropped at the scene.

The field attached to the Maquehue Airport, where Pope Francis landed and celebrated Mass, had once been used as a detention center where many indigenous peoples were tortured during Chile’s military government under Augusto Pinochet.

In the lead up to the Pope's trip, a number of the Mapuche had protested the use of the airport for the papal Mass given the serious human rights violations that took place there, arguing that the land belongs to them and not the government. Two more attacks on churches took place shortly before the Pope's arrival to Temuco, however, no one has claimed responsibility for these either.

In his homily, Pope Francis recognized that in the past, the airport had been the site of “grave violations of human rights,” and said he was offering the Mass for “all those who suffered and died, and for those who daily bear the burden of those many injustices.” He paused in a moment of silence for all who died.

“The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross bears all the sin and pain of our peoples, in order to redeem it,” he said, and pointed to the day's Gospel reading from John, in which Jesus prays for the unity of his disciples.

Unity is a gift which must be “persistently sought” for the good of all, and for future generations, he said, but cautioned against what he named as two temptations that can “poison the roots” of this unity.

First, Francis warned against the temptation to confuse unity with uniformity, saying “Jesus does not ask his Father that all may be equal, identical, for unity is not meant to neutralize or silence differences.”

“Unity can never be a stifling uniformity imposed by the powerful, or a segregation that does not value the goodness of others,” he said. Rather, the unity that Jesus refers to is a “reconciled diversity” which recognizes the value of the individual contribution of each tradition and culture.

This unity “will not allow personal or community wrongs to be perpetrated in its name,” the Pope said, adding that “we need the riches that each people has to offer, and we must abandon the notion that there are higher or lower cultures.”

It also requires both listening to and esteeming one another, which in turn builds solidarity. And solidarity, he said, is the most effective weapon against “the deforestation of hope.”

He also warned against the temptation to obtain unity with the use of violence, and cautioned against two forms of violence which he said stifle the growth of unity and reconciliation rather than encouraging them.

The first, he said, are the “elegant agreements that will never be put into practice.” They consist of nice words and detailed plans, and while these are needed, they end up “erasing with the elbow what was written by the hand” when they go unimplemented, he said, explaining that this is a form of violence “because it frustrates hope.”

Second are the actual acts that take place, he said, insisting that “a culture of mutual esteem may not be based on acts of violence and destruction that end up taking human lives.”

“You cannot assert yourself by destroying others, because this only leads to more violence and division,” he said. “Violence begets violence, destruction increases fragmentation and separation. Violence eventually makes a most just cause into a lie.”

Rather than using these two avenues, which are “the lava of a volcano that wipes out and burns everything in its path,” the Pope urged attendees to pursue a path of “active non-violence” as a political style, and told them to never tire of promoting true and peaceful dialogue for the sake of unity.

After Mass, Pope Francis will head to the mother house for the Sisters of the Holy Cross order, where he will each lunch with around 11 people, eight of whom will be Mapuche.

Pope’s Homily During Mass in Temuco, Chile (Full Text)

Zenit News - English - 6 hours 39 min ago

Below is the Vatican-provided text of Pope Francis’ homily during the Mass over which he presided at the Maquehue Airport in the Chilean city of Temuco, Jan. 17, 2018, during his Apostolic Visit to Chile and Peru, Jan. 15-22:

***

“Mari, Mari” [Good morning!]

“Küme tünngün ta niemün” [“Peace be with you!” (Lk 24:36)]

I thank God for allowing me to visit this beautiful part of our continent, the Araucanía. It is a land blessed by the Creator with immense and fertile green fields, with forests full of impressive araucarias – the fifth “praise” offered by Gabriela Mistral to this Chilean land[1] – and with its majestic snow-capped volcanoes, its lakes and rivers full of life. This landscape lifts us up to God, and it is easy to see his hand in every creature. Many generations of men and women have loved this land with fervent gratitude. Here I would like to pause and greet in a special way the members of the Mapuche people, as well as the other indigenous peoples who dwell in these southern lands: the Rapanui (from Easter Island), the Aymara, the Quechua and the Atacameños, and many others.

Seen through the eyes of tourists, this land will thrill us as we pass through it, but if we put our ear to the ground, we will hear it sing: “Arauco has a sorrow that cannot be silenced, the injustices of centuries that everyone sees taking place”.[2]

In the context of thanksgiving for this land and its people, but also of sorrow and pain, we celebrate this Eucharist. We do so in this Maquehue aerodrome, which was the site of grave violations of human rights. We offer this Mass for all those who suffered and died, and for those who daily bear the burden of those many injustices. The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross bears all the sin and pain of our peoples, in order to redeem it.

In the Gospel we have just heard, Jesus prays to the Father “that they may all be one” (Jn 17:21). At a crucial moment in his own life, he stops to plea for unity. In his heart, he knows that one of the greatest threats for his disciples and for all mankind will be division and confrontation, the oppression of some by others. How many tears would be spilled! Today we want to cling to this prayer of Jesus, to enter with him into this garden of sorrows with those sorrows of our own, and to ask the Father, with Jesus, that we too may be one. May confrontation and division never gain the upper hand among us.

This unity implored by Jesus is a gift that must be persistently sought, for the good of our land and its children. We need to be on our watch against temptations that may arise to “poison the roots” of this gift that God wants to give us, and with which he invites us to play a genuine role in history.

1. False synonyms

One of the main temptations we need to resist is that of confusing unity with uniformity. Jesus does not ask his Father that all may be equal, identical, for unity is not meant to neutralize or silence differences. Unity is not an idol or the result of forced integration; it is not a harmony bought at the price of leaving some people on the fringes. The richness of a land is born precisely from the desire of each of its parts to share its wisdom with others. Unity can never be a stifling uniformity imposed by the powerful, or a segregation that does not value the goodness of others. The unity sought and offered by Jesus acknowledges what each people and each culture are called to contribute to this land of blessings. Unity is a reconciled diversity, for it will not allow personal or community wrongs to be perpetrated in its name. We need the riches that each people has to offer, and we must abandon the notion that there are higher or lower cultures. A beautiful “chamal” requires weavers who know the art of blending the different materials and colours, who spend time with each element and each stage of the work. That process can be imitated industrially, but everyone will recognize a machine-made garment. The art of unity requires true artisans who know how to harmonize differences in the “design” of towns, roads, squares and landscapes. It is not “desk art”, or paperwork; it is a craft demanding attention and understanding. That is the source of its beauty, but also of its resistance to the passage of time and to whatever storms may come its way.

The unity that our people need requires that we listen to one another, but even more importantly, that we esteem one another. “This is not just about being better informed about others, but rather about reaping what the Spirit has sown in them”.[3] This sets us on the path of solidarity as a means of weaving unity, a means of building history. The solidarity that makes us say: We need one another, and our differences so that this land can remain beautiful! It is the only weapon we have against the “deforestation” of hope. That is why we pray: Lord, make us artisans of unity.

2. The weapons of unity.

If unity is to be built on esteem and solidarity, then we cannot accept any means of attaining it. There are two kinds of violence that, rather than encouraging the growth of unity and reconciliation, actually threaten them. First, we have to be on our guard against coming up with “elegant” agreements that will never be put into practice. Nice words, detailed plans – necessary as these are – but, when unimplemented, end up “erasing with the elbow, what was written by the hand”. This is one kind of violence, because it frustrates hope.

In the second place, we have to insist that a culture of mutual esteem may not be based on acts of violence and destruction that end up taking human lives. You cannot assert yourself by destroying others, because this only leads to more violence and division. Violence begets violence, destruction increases fragmentation and separation. Violence eventually makes a most just cause into a lie. That is why we say “no to destructive violence” in either of its two forms.

Those two approaches are like the lava of a volcano that wipes out and burns everything in its path, leaving in its wake only barrenness and desolation. Let us instead seek the path of active non-violence, “as a style of politics for peace”.[4] Let us seek, and never tire of seeking, dialogue for the sake of unity. That is why we cry out: Lord, make us artisans of your unity.

All of us, to a certain extent, are people of the earth (cf. Gen 2:7). All of us are called to “the good life” (Küme Mongen), as the ancestral wisdom of the Mapuche people reminds us. How far we have to go, and how much we still have to learn! Küme Mongen, a deep yearning that not only rises up from our hearts, but resounds like a loud cry, like a song, in all creation. Therefore, brothers and sisters, for the children of this earth, for the children of their children, let us say with Jesus to the Father: may we too be one; make us artisans of unity.

_________________________

[1] GABRIELA MISTRAL, Elogios de la tierra de Chile.

[2] VIOLETA PARRA, Arauco tiena una pena.

[3] Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, 246.

[4] Message for the 2017 World Day of Peace.

[Original Text: Spanish]

© Libreria Editrice Vaticana

Pope meets with clergy sex abuse victims in Chile

Catholic Register Canada - News - 7 hours 24 min ago
SANTIAGO, Chile – Pope Francis met in private Jan. 16 with survivors of sexual abuse by Chilean clergy, a Vatican spokesman said.

Greg Burke, the spokesman, said the Pope met with "a small group of victims of sexual abuse by priests" at the apostolic nunciature in Santiago, Chile.

"The meeting took place in a strictly private way, and no one else was present: only the Pope and the victims," Burke told journalists that evening.

The private setting, he added, allowed the group to speak freely with the Pope "and recount their sufferings.

Pope Francis "listened, prayed and cried with them," Burke said.

Also present at the press conference was Auxiliary Bishop Fernando Ramos Perez of Santiago, secretary-general of the Chilean bishops' conference.

Bishop Ramos addressed criticism regarding the presence of Bishop Juan Barros of Osorno at several papal events, including the Pope's meetings with the country's clergy as well as the bishops of Chile.

Bishop Barros' appointment as bishop by the Pope in 2015 drew outrage and protests due to his connection to Father Fernando Karadima, his former mentor. Father Karadima was sentenced to a life of prayer and penance by the Vatican after he was found guilty of sexually abusing boys.

"Bishop Barros is bishop of Osorno and was named by the Pope. All bishops have the right and responsibility to participate at the events. That was the only reason why" he was present, Bishop Ramos said.

Earlier in the day, the Pope asked forgiveness from the victims of sexual abuse during an address to government authorities and members of Chile's diplomatic corps, expressing his "pain and shame at the irreparable damage caused to children by some ministers of the church."

Burke said it was significant the Pope addressed the issue of clergy sex abuse during his meeting with government authorities "because normally he speaks about it when meeting with bishops or priests."

"The fact that he spoke there means that it is an evil not only for the church but for society," Burke said.

Pope Privately Meets, Cries With Victims of Sexual Abuse by Clergy in Chile

Zenit News - English - 8 hours 5 min ago

Pope Francis alone met privately with several victims of sexual abuse by clergy on Tuesday evening, Jan. 17, 2018, at the Apostolic Nunciature in Santiago, Chile, reported Director of the Holy See Press Office, Greg Burke, in a brief statement.

The Vatican spokesman also noted that the Pope “prayed and cried with them after hearing their experiences.”

Pope Francis is making his 22nd Apostolic Visit abroad, to Chile and Peru, Jan. 15-22, 2018.

In his first speech in the country, speaking to the nation’s authorities, Pope Francis expressed his “pain and shame’” for the “irreparable damage” caused to children by some priests in the Church.

In Chile, a country that has been scarred by the abuses that have caused tension and protests even up to and during the visit, Pope Francis asked forgiveness for these acts and appealed that “every effort” be done to help victims and to ensure that “such things do not happen again.”

 

Holy Land: Franciscan superior condemns protests against Greek Orthodox patriarch (Custody of the Holy Land)

Catholic World News - 8 hours 34 min ago
Father David Patton, the Franciscan superior in the Holy Land, condemned recent protests by Palestinian Christians in Bethlehem against embattled Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem.

Rural English diocese has highest number of seminarians in 30 years (Catholic Herald)

Catholic World News - 8 hours 35 min ago
Bishop Alan Hopes has led the Diocese of East Anglia since 2013.

1 Catholic school in diocese twice as large as Texas (Cardinal Newman Society)

Catholic World News - 8 hours 35 min ago
According to the report, the missionary spirit is “alive and well” at the preK-12 Catholic school in the Diocese of Fairbanks (Alaska).

Following White House meeting, prelate calls for legislative solution for 'DREAMers' (USCCB)

Catholic World News - 8 hours 35 min ago
Bishop Joe Vásquez of Austin is chairman of the US bishops’ Committee on Migration; ‘DREAM’ is a reference to the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act, first introduced in Congress in 2001.

God Is Not Fair (in the Best Possible Way)


Image: Joshua Stannard.

I’m always struck by the zealous insistence of fairness as a rule that first appears in childhood when parents pronounce a decision that some child renders unjust: “That’s not fair!” Growing up with three younger brothers, this experience was all too common throughout my early life. Sometimes it was an older brother like me who was given extra leeway, which upset the younger siblings who wanted the same freedom. Other times it was the younger brothers who were permitted to do something or stay up later than the older siblings were at that age, which seemed unfair in retrospect. In both cases, the feeling was one of personal slight.

Canadian bishops name delegates to Synod of Bishops on youth (CCCB)

Catholic World News - 9 hours 35 min ago
The 15th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops is devoted to “Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment” and will take place in October.

Blessed Pius IX visited Chile as young priest in 1823 (Vatican News)

Catholic World News - 9 hours 35 min ago
Blessed Pius IX (profile), who reigned from 1846 to 1878, was thus the first Pope who had set foot in North or South America.

Bishops from Europe, North America begin annual visit to Holy Land (Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem)

Catholic World News - 9 hours 35 min ago
Click here for additional information about the 2018 Holy Land Coordination.

Death toll from Boko Haram attacks falls in Niger (Punch)

Catholic World News - 9 hours 35 min ago
Boko Haram, the jihadist group based in Nigeria, is also active in Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. Punch is a leading Nigerian newspaper.
Syndicate content