Tag: Pope Francis

“Worthy Of Imitation” – Pope Francis Declares 15 Year Old ‘Computer Geek’ Venerable 

“Worthy Of Imitation” – Pope Francis Declares 15 Year Old ‘Computer Geek’ Venerable 

Vatican finds this Italian boy “worthy of imitation,” as well as a young girl from Opus Dei and a seminarian.

On Thursday July 5th, Pope Francis authorized the recognition of the “heroic virtue” of young Carlo Acutis, an Italian boy who died October 12, 2006, at age 15, of leukemia.

Acutis was a “computer geek,” who loved all things technological, such that some of the adults who knew him and had studied computer engineering thought he was a genius.

One of his most significant computer ventures was cataloguing all the Eucharistic miracles of the world. He started the project when he was 11 years old and wrote at the time:

The more Eucharist we receive, the more we will become like Jesus, so that on this earth we will have a foretaste of Heaven.”


He then asked his parents to start taking him to all the places of the Eucharistic miracles, and two and half years later the project was completed.

In addition to the advance in Acutis’ cause for canonization, Pope Francis also recognized the heroic virtue of two other young people.

Pietro di Vitale was a young seminarian. Born in 1916, he died in 1940 at age 24, just some years after entering seminary. At his death, he told his mother, “Mama, long live Jesus and Mary.”


As well, Alexia Gonzalez-Barros was recognized on the of 5th July as Venerable.

Born in 1971 in Spain to a family involved with Opus Dei, Alexia suffered from illness from the time she was very young. In 1979, she went to Rome for her First Communion and was able to greet Pope John Paul II. When she was 13, a tumor left her paralyzed. She died a few months later, on December 5, 1985, showing exemplary courage.

Pope Francis’ Amazing Insight On The 10 Commandments, You Have To Read This

Pope Francis’ Amazing Insight On The 10 Commandments, You Have To Read This

The devil was able to convince Eve of a lie. Do we buy into it too??

Pope Francis has centered on one word in the Bible that helps us to see the Ten Commandments as they should be seen — not as cold directives, but as an invitation to relationship.

The pope offered this reflection this morning at the general audience, as he continued with his new series of catecheses on the commandments.

“In the Bible the commandments do not exist autonomously, but are part of a relationship,” he said.

The Holy Father pointed out that at the beginning of Exodus 20, “we read – and this is important – ‘And God spoke all these words.’”

“It appears to be an opening like any other, but nothing in the Bible is banal,” he said. “The text does not say, ‘And God spoke these commandments,’ but ‘these words.’

“The Jewish tradition always calls the Decalogue ‘the ten Words.’ And the term ‘Decalogue’ is intended to say precisely this. And yet they have the form of laws, they are objectively commandments. Why, then, does the holy Author use, right here, the term ‘ten Words?’ Why? And why not ‘ten commandments?’”

The pope asked what difference lies between a command and a word?

“A command is essentially a communication that does not require dialogue. The word, on the other hand, is the essential means of relations as dialogue. … A word is received, communication is given, and the commandments are words of God: God communicates Himself in these ten Words, and awaits our response.”

Francis noted how different it is to receive an order, versus to “perceive that someone is trying to speak with us.”

And he reflected on how Satan at the beginning was able to deceive Adam and Eve precisely on this point. “He wants to convince them that God has forbidden them to eat the fruit of the tree of good and evil to keep them in submission. The challenge is precisely this: is the first rule that God gave to man the imposition of a despot who forbids and compels, or is it the care of a father who cares for his young and protects them from self-destruction? Is it a word or is it a command?”

“The most tragic, among the many lies that the serpent tells Eve, is the suggestion of an envious deity: ‘But no, God is envious of you’ – and of a possessive deity – ‘God does not want you to have freedom.’ The facts show dramatically that the serpent lied; he made them believe that a word of love was a command.”

Pope Francis said that man is always at this crossroads, facing the question: “Does God impose things or does He take care of me? Are His commandments just a law, or do they contain a word, to care for me? Is God master or father?”

And he answered, “God is the Father: never forget this. Even in the worst situations, think that we have a Father Who loves us all. Are we subjects or offspring?”

“A thousand times we must choose between the mentality of slaves or the mentality of sons. The commandment is that of a father, the word is that of a Father,” he exclaimed.

“The Holy Spirit is a Spirit of sons, He is the Spirit of Jesus,” the pope said. “A spirit of slaves cannot but receive the Law in an oppressive way, and can produce two opposing results: either a life made up of duties and obligations, or a violent reaction of rejection. … The commandments are the path toward freedom, because they are the word of the Father that makes us free in this journey. The world needs not legalism, but care. It needs Christians with the heart of sons. It needs Christians with the heart of sons: do not forget this.”

Marriage Can Only Be Between A Man And A Woman ‘We Cannot Change It, This Is The Nature Of Things’ – Pope Francis 

Marriage Can Only Be Between A Man And A Woman ‘We Cannot Change It, This Is The Nature Of Things’ – Pope Francis 

 

Francis discusses Amoris Laetitia, money, just war and psychoanalysis in new book-length interview

By virtue of its very definition, marriage can only be between a man and a woman, Pope Francis has said in a new book-length interview.

“We cannot change it. This is the nature of things,” not just in the Church, but in human history, he said in a series of interviews with Dominique Wolton, a 70-year-old French sociologist and expert in media and political communication.

Published in French, the 417-page book, Politique et Société (“Politics and Society”) was released on September 6, 2017 in France. Catholic News Service obtained an advance copy, and excerpts appeared online.

When it comes to the true nature of marriage as well as gender, there is “critical confusion at the moment”, the Pope said.

When asked about marriage for same-sex couples, the Pope said, “Let’s call this ‘civil unions.’ We do not joke around with truth.”

Teaching children that they can choose their gender, he said, also plays a part in fostering such mistakes about the truth or facts of nature.

The Pope said he wondered whether these new ideas about gender and marriage were somehow based on a fear of differences, and he encouraged researchers to study the subject.

Pope Francis also said his decision to give all priests permanent permission to grant absolution to those who confess to having procured an abortion was not meant to trivialise this serious and grave sin.

Abortion continues to be “murder of an innocent person. But if there is sin, forgiveness must be facilitated,” he said. So often a woman who never forgets her aborted child “cries for years without having the courage to go see a priest”.

“Do you have any idea the number of people who can finally breathe?” he asked, adding how important it was these women can find the Lord’s forgiveness and never commit this sin again.

Pope Francis said the biggest threat in the world is money. In St. Matthew’s Gospel, when Jesus talked about people’s love and loyalty being torn between two things, he didn’t say it was between “your wife or God”, it was choosing between God or money.

It’s clear. They are two things opposed to each other,” he said.

When asked why people do not listen to this message even though it has been clearly condemned by the Church since the time of the Gospels, the Pope said it is because some people prefer to speak only about sexual morality.

“There is a great danger for preachers, lecturers, to fall into mediocrity,” which is condemning only those forms of immorality that fall “below the belt”, he said.

But the other sins that are the most serious: hatred, envy, pride, vanity, killing another, taking away a life … these are really not talked about that much,he said.

The most minor sins are the sins of the flesh,” he said, because the flesh is weak. “The most dangerous sins are those of the mind”, and confessors should spend more time asking if a person prays, reads the Gospel and seeks the Lord.

One temptation the Church has always been vulnerable to, the Pope said, is being defensive because it is scared.

Where in the Gospels does the Lord say that we need to seek security? Instead he said, ‘Risk, go ahead, forgive and evangelise.’”

Another temptation, he said, is to seek uniformity with rules, for example, in the debate concerning his apostolic exhortation on the family, Amoris Laetitia.

When I talk about families in difficulty, I say, ‘Welcome, accompany, discern, integrate …’ and then everyone will see the doors open. In reality, what happens is you hear people say, ‘They cannot receive Communion.’ ‘They cannot do this and that.’”

That temptation of the Church to emphasise “no, no and no” and what is prohibited is the same “drama Jesus [experienced] with the Pharisees.”

This closed, fundamentalist mindset like Jesus faced is “the battle I lead today with the exhortation”.

Jesus followed “another logic” that went beyond prohibitions as he did not adhere to customs – like not touching lepers and stoning adulterers – that had become like commandments, he said.

Church leaders are used to “frozen norms” and “fixed standards”, but when they ask, “‘Can we give Communion to divorcees?’ I reply, ‘Speak with the divorced man and woman, welcome, accompany, integrate and discern”, which opens a path and a way of communication to lead people to Christ.

Encountering Christ is what leads people onto a path of living a moral life, he said.

When asked about the Church’s “just war” theory, the Pope said the issue should be looked into because “no war is just. The only just thing is peace.”

Concerning the persecution of Christians, particularly in the East, and the question of why God would allow such tragedy, the pope said, “I do not know where God is, but I know where man is in this situation. Men make weapons and sell them.”

It is easy for people to question God, he said, but “it is we who commit all this” and allow it to happen; “our humanity is corrupted”.

Speaking about women, the Pope said they have an important role in society because they help unify and reconcile people.

Some people mistake women’s demands to be represented and heard in the world with a kind of “machismo in a skirt”, but machismo is a form of “brutality” and does not represent what women should be.

He said with the reform of the Roman Curia, “there will be many women who will have decision-making power”, not just roles as advisers.

While he said he believes he will succeed in opening up more positions to women in the curia, it will be difficult and there will be problems – not because of misogyny, but because of “the problem of power”.

When Pope Francis and the French interviewer talked about differences between the Argentines and the French, the Pope said, “Argentines are quite fond of psychoanalysis.”

The Pope praised those psychoanalysts who are able to be “open to humanism and to dialogue with other sciences”, particularly medicine and homeopathy.

“Those whom I have known have helped me a lot at one point in my life when I needed consultation,” he said, describing how he met with a Jewish psychoanalyst once a week for six months when he was 42 “to clear up certain things”.

“She was very good. Very professional as a doctor and psychoanalyst” and “she helped me so much.”

‘We Cannot Share Communion With Non Catholics Like Bear Or Cake’ – Cardinal Arinze

‘We Cannot Share Communion With Non Catholics Like Bear Or Cake’ – Cardinal Arinze


Protestants who wish to receive Catholic Communion should become Catholic themselves, the Nigerian Cardinal added

Holy Communion is exclusively for Catholics in a state of grace and not something to be shared between friends like beer or cake, said a former senior adviser to two popes.

Nigerian Cardinal Francis Arinze said any moves to give greater access to Communion to divorced and remarried Catholics and to non-Catholic spouses of Catholics represented “serious” challenges to the teaching of the Church on the Eucharist.

In an interview with Catholic News Service, he implicitly objected to interpretations of Pope Francis’s 2016 apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia” that would permit divorced and remarried Catholics who had not received an annulment to receive Communion in certain circumstances.

“If a person is divorced and remarried (without the first marriage being annulled) then there is a problem,” said Cardinal Arinze, adding that Jesus taught that their arrangements constituted adultery.

“It is not we who made that (teaching),” said the cardinal, 85, who served as Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments under St John Paul II and now-retired Pope Benedict XVI. “It is Christ who said it.”

“We cannot be more merciful than Christ,” he continued. “If any of us says he has permission from Christ to change one of the major points Christ gave us in the Gospel, we would like to see that permission and also the signature.”

“You can see that it is not possible,” he said. “Not even if all of the bishops agree, it doesn’t become so. It is rather serious, because it touches the faith on the Holy Eucharist and also that marriage cannot be dissolved between Christians who have lived together and no human power can dissolve it. It is rather serious.”

In his interview at Buckfast Abbey, a Benedictine monastery, Cardinal Arinze also said that sharing Communion with Protestant spouses was not an issue of hospitality.

He said that while he wished other Christians well it was important they understand that “the Holy Eucharist is not our private possession which we can share with our friends.”

“Our tea is such and also our bottle of beer. We can share those with our friends,” Cardinal Arinze said.

“It isn’t just that we wish one another well. After Mass, you can go to the refectory and have a cup of tea and even a glass of beer and a bit of cake. That’s OK. But the Mass is not like that,” he added.

“It is very important to look at the doctrine,” he said. “The Eucharistic celebration of the Mass is not an ecumenical service. It is not a gathering of those who believe in Christ and who invent a prayer for the occasion, it is a celebration of the mysteries of Christ who died for us on the cross, who made bread into his body and wine into his blood and told the apostles ‘do this in memory of me.’

“The Eucharistic celebration of the Mass is the celebration of the faith community – those who believe in Christ, they are communicating in the faith, and in the sacraments, and in ecclesiastical communion… ecclesiastical unity with their pastor, their bishop and the Pope. It is the community which celebrates the Holy Eucharist. Anybody who is not a member of that community does not fit in at all,” he said.

He said if Protestants wished to receive holy Communion in Catholic churches then they should become Catholics.

“Come, be received into the Church, and then you can receive Holy Communion seven times a week. Otherwise no,” said Cardinal Arinze.

The cardinal flew into England from Rome May 22 to attend a May 24 Mass in celebration of the millennium year of the founding of Buckfast in 1018. The abbey was dissolved by King Henry VIII during the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century, but it was rebuilt a century ago on the exact site.

His comments were made amid a controversy over the German bishops’ pastoral handbook titled: “Walking with Christ – In the Footsteps of Unity: Mixed Marriages and Common Participation in the Eucharist.”

The document has divided the German bishops and seven of them, including a cardinal, have requested the intervention of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts.

Pope Francis has invited leaders of the German bishops’ conference and some of the bishops opposed to the guidelines to travel to the Vatican for a discussion with officials from the three offices.

The text of the guidelines has not been made public, but it is widely assumed to foresee situations in which a Lutheran married to a Catholic and attending Mass with the spouse could receive Communion regularly.

It follows ongoing confusion within the Church about what scope “Amoris Laetitia” allows concerning Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics whose previous marriage was not annulled.

Some bishops’ conferences, such as those of Germany and Malta, have interpreted the papal exhortation liberally, while others insist that Church teaching and practice remains unchanged and unchangeable.

Pope Francis has declined to issue a clarification on the contentious points of the document and has effectively ignored a dubia, or list of questions, submitted in 2016 by four cardinals, two of whom are now deceased.

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