In 2009, the Vatican confirmed the first miracle attributed to Pope John Paul II’s intercession—curing a French nun of Parkinson ‘s disease—and Pope Benedict XVI signed the decree beatifying him in 2011. Last month, the Vatican confirmed the second miracle—curing a Costa Rican woman of a severe brain injury.
Well now it’s official. On Friday of last week, Pope Francis approved the second miracle, paving the way for Pope John Paul II to be canonized a saint by the end of 2013.
Pope John XXIII will also be canonized a saint.
These men are still examples for us today. With the Texas State Legislature likely voting this week on the fetal pain bill, I urge you to join me in prayer in honor of these two great men and servants of the Lord and those in Texas carrying the torch for the sanctity of life
Prayer for Life by Pope John Paul II
O Mary, bright dawn of the new world, Mother of the living, to you do we entrust the cause of life: Look down, O Mother, upon the vast numbers of babies not allowed to be born, of the poor whose lives are made difficult, of men and women who are victims of brutal violence, of the elderly and the sick killed by indifference or out of misguided mercy. Grant that all who believe in your son may proclaim the Gospel of life with honesty and love to the people of our time. Obtain for them the grace to accept that Gospel as a gift ever new, the joy of celebrating it with gratitude throughout their lives, and the courage to bear witness to it resolutely, in order to build, together with all people of good will, the civilization of truth and love, to the praise and glory of God, the Creator and lover of life.
Did you hear or read Pope Francis” Homily at his Installation Mass on the Feast of St. Joseph?
He spoke of Joseph the “protector” and then transitioned to what that means to each of us in today”s world.
We wanted to share with you an excerpt:
“The vocation of being a “protector”, however, is not just something involving us Christians alone; it also has a prior dimension which is simply human, involving everyone. It means protecting all creation, the beauty of the created world, as the Book of Genesis tells us and as Saint Francis of Assisi showed us. It means respecting each of God”s creatures and respecting the environment in which we live. It means protecting people, showing loving concern for each and every person, especially children, the elderly, those in need, who are often the last we think about. It means caring for one another in our families: husbands and wives first protect one another, and then, as parents, they care for their children, and children themselves, in time, protect their parents. It means building sincere friendships in which we protect one another in trust, respect, and goodness. In the end, everything has been entrusted to our protection, and all of us are responsible for it. Be protectors of God”s gifts! (more…)
The Mass of Installation Tuesday for our new Pontiff is a world event. All the diplomats from various countries assigned to the Holy See will be in attendance in the traditional formal tuxedos with tails. Countries are sending delegations to pay their respects or, in the case of the United States, their disrespects for the teachings of the Church.
With regular quadrennial attention to the Catholic vote in the United States and the recent attacks on our religious liberties, there is no misunderstanding among the Executive Branch or Legislative Branch in Washington D.C. about where the Catholic Church stands on the settled issues of life and marriage.
The White House is delivering a clear, dismissive message of disrespect for the teachings of the Catholic Church by sending the two poster children for dissenting Catholic politicians. The “official” U.S. delegation is led by our Vice President Joe Biden who on May 6, 2012 during an appearance on ‘Meet the Press’ endorsed same-sex marriage. He is joined by former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Leader of the United States House of Representatives. Any faithful Catholic who pays attention to politics is familiar with Leader Pelosi’s votes against life and marriage and her knack for attempting to twist Church writings to justify her positions. It is easy to understand why Georgetown University President Dr. John J. DeGioia, the oldest Jesuit institution in the United States is on the delegation. However, Pope Francis is not a “Georgetown Jesuit” and it is safe to assume he would not have allowed a pro-abortion Cabinet Secretary like Kathleen Sebelius to be honored during commencement activities. And, in a nod to bi-partisanship and American Latinos, the pro-life Latino Governor of New Mexico is being included as almost an afterthought. Seventy-five percent of the U.S. delegation personifies the persistent frustration with Catholics in public life and our institutions of Catholic higher education, something our new pope addressed as Cardinal and our last two pontiffs repeatedly criticized during their papacies. (more…)
After just two days of the conclave, Habemus Papam (we have a pope)!
Shortly after 6:30 PM in Rome, white smoke billowed from the Sistine Chapel indicating the cardinals had selected a successor to Peter. An hour later, French Cardinal Jean-Louis Pierre Tauran appeared on the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica pronouncing, “Habemus Papam” — we have a pope! — and introduced Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina.
Cardinal Bergoglio, who has chosen the name Francis I, entered the balcony to deliver his first papal blessing, and did something amazing — he asked the entire world watching to pray together. An act of a humble man faithful to the Magesterium of our Church.
We are a man described by many to be a “compassionate conservative” is our new Pope. We at Catholic Advocate encourage all to pray for our new pontiff and our Church.
Below are the first words to the faithful from Pope Francis I:
Brothers and sisters good evening.
You all know that the duty of the Conclave was to give a bishop to Rome. It seems that my brother Cardinals have come almost to the ends of the earth to get him… but here we are. I thank you for the welcome that has come from the diocesan community of Rome.
First of all I would say a prayer pray for our Bishop Emeritus Benedict XVI.. Let us all pray together for him, that the Lord bless him and Our Lady protect him.
Glory to the Father…
And now let us begin this journey, the Bishop and people, this journey of the Church of Rome which presides in charity over all the Churches, a journey of brotherhood in love, of mutual trust. Let us always pray for one another. Let us pray for the whole world that there might be a great sense of brotherhood . My hope is that this journey of the Church that we begin today, together with help of my Cardinal Vicar, be fruitful for the evangelization of this beautiful city.
And now I would like to give the blessing, but first I want to ask you a favour. Before the bishop blesses the people I ask that you would pray to the Lord to bless me – the prayer of the people for their Bishop. Let us say this prayer – your prayer for me – in silence.
[The Protodeacon announced that all those who received the blessing, either in person or by radio, television or by the new means of communication receive the plenary indulgence in the form established by the Church. He prayed that Almighty God protect and guard the Pope so that he may lead the Church for many years to come, and that he would grant peace to the Church throughout the world.]
[Immediately afterwards Pope Francis gave his first blessing Urbi et Orbi – To the City and to the World.]
I will now give my blessing to you and to the whole world, to all men and women of good will.
Brothers and sisters, I am leaving you. Thank you for your welcome. Pray for me and I will be with you again soon.
We will see one another soon.
Tomorrow I want to go to pray the Madonna, that she may protect Rome.
Good night and sleep well!
“I have convoked you to this Consistory, not only for the three canonizations, but also to communicate to you a decision of great importance for the life of the Church.
“After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry. I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering.
“However, in today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the bark of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me.
“For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter, entrusted to me by the Cardinals on 19 April 2005, in such a way, that as from 28 February 2013, at 20:00 hours, the See of Rome, the See of Saint Peter, will be vacant and a Conclave to elect the new Supreme Pontiff will have to be convoked by those whose competence it is.
“Dear Brothers, I thank you most sincerely for all the love and work with which you have supported me in my ministry and I ask pardon for all my defects. And now, let us entrust the Holy Church to the care of Our Supreme Pastor, Our Lord Jesus Christ, and implore his holy Mother Mary, so that she may assist the Cardinal Fathers with her maternal solicitude, in electing a new Supreme Pontiff. With regard to myself, I wish to also devotedly serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer.
NETWORK, a DC Catholic lobbying organization, has been little known outside the Beltway since its founding by Catholic sisters in 1971. Within the Beltway and in the media, NETWORK is known as a Catholic organization whose representatives often visit members of Congress but never to advocate on behalf of the unborn or the true meaning of marriage.
When President Clinton presented the Presidential Citizen’s Medal in 2001 to one of NETWORK’s founders, he praised the “national Catholic lobby that has mobilized thousands of nuns and lay people to fight for social progress in South Africa, for women’s rights and for economic justice.”
Yet, it was during the debate over Obamacare when NETWORK attracted national attention. As NETWORK describes proudly on its web site: “….during the 2010 health care reform struggle, NETWORK Executive Director Simone Campbell, SSS, wrote the “nuns’ letter” supporting the bill and got 59 signers on the letter, including LCWR. She was thanked by President Obama and invited to the ceremony celebrating its being signed into law.” (more…)
Catholic Advocate Vice President Matt Smith today issued the following statement regarding the panel discussion “Truth, Lies and Politics” being held this evening, Jan. 3, in Newton, Massachusetts at the Leventhal-Sidman Jewish Community Center. The event has been promoted in the Boston Globe as “Truth, Lies and Politics, a panel discussion featuring [Congressman Barney] Frank, journalist Robert Kuttner, and Father J. Bryan Hehir [Archdiocese of Boston Secretary for Health Care and Social Services]. Author Leonard Fein moderates the program exploring the relationship (or lack thereof) between politicians and truth-telling.”
“Father Hehir has an opportunity this evening to represent the teachings of our Church. The question is: will Father Hehir himself speak the Truth tonight?” asked Smith. “Will he speak the Truth to Congressman Frank about marriage being between one man and one woman? Or address Congressman Frank’s 100% pro-abortion voting record? These are pressing issues of ‘truth-telling’ between politicians.”
According to Freedom to Marry, a pro-same sex marriage organization: “We need more Barney Franks in public life, not fewer, and fortunately we will always have his indelible example to work from.” From their own website, “Freedom to Marry is leading the campaign to overturn DOMA [Defense of Marriage Act] and is working across the country to win marriage in more states and educate the public about why marriage matters to same-sex couples and their families.”
Smith added, “With Congressman Frank’s retirement at the end of this year, will Father Hehir take the opportunity tonight to publicly speak the Truth that faithful Catholics do not need more representatives voting like Barney Frank in Washington if we are going to make progress on the settled issues of life and marriage?”
A few weeks ago, October 24, 2011, members of the mainstream media reported on a Vatican document. They invariably spin any document coming from the Vatican one way or the other, depending on whether or not it conforms to a liberal viewpoint. The latest episode occurred when the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace issued its ponderously titled “Towards Reforming the International Financial and Monetary System in the Context of Global Public Authority.”
The headlines announcing “The Vatican Calls for a World Bank” misrepresented the document itself and ignored the fact that it in no way represented an authoritative statement of Church teaching. The next step in the media comment was, of course, to link the release of the document with the Occupy Wall Street movement which was just beginning to gain momentum.
Those who comment responsibly and knowledgeably on Vatican matters did what they always do — publish their corrective columns the following day, explaining how a document from a particular Vatican council should not be misrepresented by the American media as something akin to the papal encyclical. But, by then, the damage is usually done. One of these columns, however, appeared only a few days ago and deserves our attention at Catholic Advocate. (more…)
I’ve been in the presence of two saints in my lifetime, maybe more, but two who I thought were saints at the time. One was John Paul II, the other I won’t name because he is still among us.
When I first saw Pope John Paul II, he was kneeling before the altar in his private chapel — his back and shoulders were so massive he could have been a linebacker for the Green Bay Packers. But more importantly, as I watched him pray I could feel the radiation of sanctity. I had long heard about the “odor of sanctity” but I had never experienced it myself. (more…)