Thursday, October 23, 2014

Five Things To Remember On Oct. 23


1. Pope Francis on Thursday called on all men and women of good will to fight for the abolishment of the death penalty in “all of its forms” and for the improvement of prison conditions.

2. The bishops of South Sudan appreciate the support of the international community and call for greater emergency assistance as well as pressure for dialogue to keep their country from descending into increased poverty and conflict, said the chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace in an October 22 letter to Ambassador Donald Booth, special envoy to Sudan and South Sudan.

3. Here are photos from yesterday's Mass celebrating the Feast Day of St. John Paul II at the Saint John Paul II National Shrine in Washington.

4. The Catholic Bishops of the United States affirmed their stance against domestic violence, and their support for victims of domestic violence, in their 2002 statement, When I Call for Help: A Pastoral Response to Domestic Violence Against Women, an updated version of their 1992 statement.

5. God loves you.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Five Things To Remember On Oct. 22

1. All wars begin in a jealous heart, Pope Francis said today, and people need to let go of pride and envy.

2. Today is the Feast Day of St. John Paul II, patron saint of World Youth Day. Check out WYDUSA.org for the latest information on the next World Youth Day in Poland.

3. National Migration Week starts in the first week of January. Learn more in this video:




4. People of Life has been sharing daily resources on Facebook during Respect Life Month. Head to their Facebook to like them today.

5. God loves you.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Five Things To Remember On Oct. 21


1. Cardinal Donald Wuerl of the Archdiocese of Washington reflects on the Synod and what's next for families in this Catholic News Service video.



2. The USCCB's Committee on Divine Worship will present five liturgical items for vote, including revisions to the liturgy of the hours and a revision of guidelines for the celebration of the sacraments with persons with disabilities, at the annual Fall General Assembly, November 10-13, in Baltimore.

3. Pope Francis will visit Turkey this November, the Vatican announced today.

4. National Vocation Awareness Week begins Nov. 2, and there are resources available to learn more.

5. God loves you.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Five Things To Remember On Oct. 20



1. The Synod of Bishops on the family has ended, but you can learn about what happened on Catholic News Service's special site.

2. On October 19, Pope Francis celebrated the closing Mass of the Synod on the Family and the beatification of Pope Paul VI. Read how Pope Paul influenced an American bishop and about his emphasis on peace and justice issues.

3. The USCCB's Committee on Divine Worship will present five liturgical items for vote, including revisions to the liturgy of the hours and a revision of guidelines for the celebration of the sacraments with persons with disabilities, at the annual Fall General Assembly, November 10-13, in Baltimore.

4. USCCB President Archbishop Joseph Kurtz reflected on the Synod in this Catholic News Service video:



5. God loves you.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Five Things To Remember On Oct. 17


1. Bishop Ricken, of Green Bay, Wisconsin, and chairman of the Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis says, "The vast and immediate reach of digital technology means today’s evangelizers have more tools than ever at their disposal. This is a gift, especially because proclaiming Christ to the world is not optional for the Church."

2. On Sunday, Pope Francis will celebrate the closing Mass of the Synod on the Family and the beatification of Pope Paul VI. Read how Pope Paul influenced an American bishop and about his emphasis on peace and justice issues. Here is a round-up of all our blogs this week on Paul VI.

3. Pope emeritus Benedict XVI will attend the beatification.

4. Sunday is World Mission Sunday, a day set aside for Catholics worldwide to recommit themselves to the Church's missionary activity through prayer and sacrifice.

5. God loves you.

Something Nice for Paul VI

On October 19, at the close of the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family in Rome, Pope Francis will beatify Pope Paul VI (1963-78), who oversaw most of the Second Vatican Council and its implementation.

To commemorate this milestone, this blog is featuring posts on Pope Paul -- honoring his legacy by reflecting on his individual and lasting contributions to the life of the Church. These posts are authored by bishops and lay Catholics:
and a bonus...

Note to diocesan editors and webmasters: These commentaries are free for your reprinting and posting. Please note the source as this blog, linking back where possible.

(CNS Photo/Giancarlo Giuliani)

A Church That Must Go Out -- Pope Paul's Final Exhortation

By Bishop David Ricken

Pope Francis has repeatedly spoken of the need for a Church that goes out from itself, bringing mercy to the margins of society. This call is evident in his apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (Joy of the Gospel), in which he states, “An evangelizing community gets involved by word and deed in people’s daily lives; it bridges distances, it is willing to abase itself if necessary, and it embraces human life, touching the suffering flesh of Christ in others.”

These words, like much of Pope Francis’s thought, draw heavily from Pope Paul VI (1963-78), whom Pope Francis will beatify, or bring one step closer to being declared a saint, October 19.

On December 8, 1975, Pope Paul issued Evangelii Nuntiandi, “On Evangelization in the Modern World.” This apostolic exhortation was shared with the hope of fostering “a new period of evangelization.” Pope Francis has called Evangelii Nuntiandithe greatest pastoral document that has ever been written to this day.”

Evangelii Nuntiandi advanced the call of the Second Vatican Council to become a Church that reaches outside of itself and transforms the world around us (see Decree on the Apostolate of Lay People, 2). Through proclaiming Christ to the world, the Church and those who accept her message will experience a profound change of mind and heart.

Paul VI was keenly aware that evangelists had to first be evangelized. The self-righteous, the judgmental, those who feel they are better than others would not bear fruit. Repentant sinners, those who realize they can’t live life on their own and need Christ, those willing to listen to others and share their own stories of how Christ has touched their lives – those would be the needed witnesses who experience continual conversion.

Paul VI also challenges us to see evangelization as more than just a one-on-one encounter, but also the transformation of society and culture. Evangelization calls for a new way of living personally and as a people. The power of the Gospel affects, or as Paul VI states, upsets “mankind’s criteria of judgment, determining values, points of interest, lines of thought, sources of inspiration and models of life which are in contrast with the Word of God and the plan of salvation.”

Yet Paul VI realized that even as the Gospel transforms peoples and societies, “the conditions of society in which we live oblige all of us therefore to revise methods, to seek by every means to study how we can bring the Christian message to modern man.” In other words, the way the Church spreads the Good News is always evolving. This has been evident recently in the calls for “new language” at the Synod of Bishops in Rome. It’s also the case with the many Catholics, bishops, clergy and lay people alike, who have generated a powerful witness through their use of social media, Pope Francis chief among them.

The vast and immediate reach of digital technology means today’s evangelizers have more tools than ever at their disposal. This is a gift, especially because proclaiming Christ to the world is not optional for the Church. All Christians are called to share the joy of Christ and his Gospel. Bishop Paul Bradley of Kalamazoo, Michigan, recently said on Twitter: “It’s not that the Church has a mission; rather the Mission, of spreading the Good News of Jesus, has a Church to carry out the mission.” Or as Paul VI said, “She exists in order to evangelize.”

Paul VI prayed that evangelization would become our “daily preoccupation” and “a way of life and action." With the Lord Jesus Christ as the center of our lives, may we go forth boldly, sharing the joy of the Gospel with all we meet.

Bishop Ricken is bishop of Green Bay, Wisconsin, and chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis. He tweets @BpDavidRicken.

CNS photo/Michael Alexander, Georgia Bulletin