NEWS & VIEWS
with a Catholic slant
Pope striving for unity with Orthodox as relations warm between East and West
It was 1054 A.D. when the Latin and Greek Churches split, anathemizing each other. This great schism has continued for well over 900 years but ever since Pope Paul VI, who we feature in today's TOP 100 CATHOLICS OF THE CENTURY, met with the Patriarch Athenagoras I the thaw has begun. Pope John Paul II is hoping it will some day result in reunion between East and West and he sent the Prefect of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity to the Orthodox festivities on the Feast of Saint Andrew in Istanbul to honor the Eastern traditions and the Patriarch of Constantinople. The Orthodox will reciprocate on June 29, 2000 at the Vatican for the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul. In addition the Eastern Church will send a representative in January when the Pope opens the Holy Door at St. Paul's Outside-the-Walls. For more, click on East-West thaw
Holy Father emphasizes individual Confessions in ad limina talks to Portuguese Bishops, confirms he'll be in Fatima to beatify Fatima seers
The Pope emphasized to the Bishops of Portugal the necessity to stress the sacraments and return to the tradition of individual Confessions, making the Sacrament of Reconciliation readily available to their flocks. Maybe he needs to talk with the American Bishops as well about this! A half hour to an hour on Saturday just doesn't fulfill the need for everyone to go to Confession. Also, the Holy Father confirmed that he will see them at Fatima in May when he will make a two-day Papal Visit to officially beatify Francisco and Jacinta Sarto, two of the three visionaries of Fatima as we reported a few days ago. For more, click on Portugal.
England gives up power of Northern Ireland, as Catholics and Protestants work together in partnership in parliament for peace and prosperity
After thirty years of British rule and decades of hardships and heartaches, Northern Ireland is finally free of English dominance as Queen Elizabeth passed a law that went into effect yesterday, granting a totally Irish government in Northern Ireland through a coalition of a joint Catholic-Protestant parliament that was proposed last year on Good Friday when the landmark Peace Accord was signed. Despite setbacks and some opposition, both Catholics and Protestants realize too much blood has been shed and it is time to live and work together in harmony for common goals. For more, click on Peace through Parliament partnership in Northern Ireland.
Freedom Fighter Jose Ramos-Horta returns triumphantly to East Timor after two-decade plus exile, extolls Church for standing by people when no one else would.
After 24 years in exile, the architect of East Timor's freedom fight, Jose Ramos-Horta, who received the Nobel Peace Prize along with Bishop Carlos Ximenes Belo, returned to his beloved homeland of East Timor and praised the Church for standing by the East Timorites when all others turned their backs on this former Portuguese, mostly Catholic territory in the far eastern end of the Indonesian archepelago. He called on all to forgive their enemies in order to begin anew for though most of East Timor's temporal things have been destroyed, they cannot destroy East Timor's spiritual soul and through that is the hope of all the citizens as the Church will officially take control of education in helping the people during the difficult rebuilding period ahead. For more, click on Hero returns to East Timor .
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Coming this weekend:
The 9th selection of the TOP 100 CATHOLICS OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
Another pertinent editorial in CATHOLIC PewPOINT
Heart-filled words from Sister Mary Lucy Astuto in her column GETTING TO THE HEART OF THE MATTER
Sixty-third installment of our new daily feature APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH
Time Capsules in Church History with MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES focusing on December 3rd through the 5th.
DAILY LITURGY for the Feast of Saint Francis Xavier on Friday and Saturday's duo feast of Advent Time plus the Feast of Saint John of Damascus and the SECOND SUNDAY OF ADVENT.
Another gem from SIMPLY SHEEN and we highlight another Prince of the Church: Cardinal James Francis Stafford of the Pontifical Council for the Laity in our COLLEGE OF CARDINALS COLLECTION
...and much more in our 230th issue for 1999!
TOP 100 CATHOLICS OF THE CENTURY Countdown - Number 10:
Pope Paul VI
Beleaguered mild-mannered Pontiff who completed Vatican II, then was rejected by the world for his landmark encyclical Humanae Vitae
Today we begin the TOP TEN COUNTDOWN, bringing you the 10th person selected out of the TOP 100 CATHOLICS OF THE CENTURY. The voters chose Pope Paul VI, the author of the encyclical on artificial birth control Humanae Vitae that was so widely rejected. This 262nd successor of Peter narrowly beat out Pope John XXIII by a few votes. He admired John and sought to carry out what his predecessor had started including Vatican II. But he also realized many mistakes were made in its implementation and on his deathbed acknowledged that "satan is now in the sanctuary." For more on the 10th selection, click on POPE PAUL VI
"O Come, O Come, Emmanuel!"
In his column today, Pat Ludwa turns to the meaning of Advent in preparing for the Christ Child - for the man the prophet Isaias called Emmanuel. But Pat asks if we are looking for an earthly concept of a king who would bowl His enemies over, or one Who is meek and humble of heart and asks the same of His loyal subjects. With all the glitz of Christmas that began shortly after Halloween and will all disappear December 26th as fast as it can be put away, we must remember that to place our hopes in a king by earthly standards will leave us sorely disappointed, but to place our total trust in a King by Heavenly standards then we truly know the meaning of Emmanuel and will prepare accordingly. The question is left up to us. For Pat's column Which Emmanuel are we looking for?, click on VIEW FROM THE PEW
Appreciation of God's Gift of Religion
Today we continue with our new series in the search to uncover the wonderful treasures of the Church contained in the great Deposit of Faith. We conclude today a two-parter on Religion and the End of Man how God in His Infinite Wisdom created man with a purpose so that man and woman could be happy in this world and even happier with Him in the next. For the sixty-second installment, click on APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH
Events that happened this day in Church History
On this date in 1830 Pope Pius VII, in order to avert war, arrived in Paris to crown Napoleon Bonaparte as Emperor of France as a symbol of peace, but the little general's disregard for protocol and shabby disrespect for the Sovereign Pontiff by placing the crown on his own head rather than allowing the Pope to do so gave a visible omen of what was to come for Bonaparte would invade Rome and capture the Pope. For other pertinent events throughout the centuries that are memorable in Church history today, click on MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES
SIMPLY SHEEN: Take five, stand back and relax
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but the words of Bishop Fulton J. Sheen have been known to launch a thousand images in one's mind, one of the ways this late luminary did so much to evangelize the faith. Because of the urgency of the times and because few there are today who possess the wisdom, simplicity and insight than the late Archbishop who touched millions, we are bringing you daily gems from his writings. The good bishop makes it so simple that we have dubbed this daily series: "SIMPLY SHEEN".
"Repose - true leisure - cannot be enjoyed without some recognition of the spiritual world, for the first purpose of repose is the contemplation of the good. Its goal is a true perspective one: the small incidents of everyday life in their relation to the larger goodness that surrounds us. Genesis tells us that after the creation of the world, 'God saw all that He had made, and found it very good' (Genesis 1: 31). Such contemplation of his work is natural to man, whenever he, too, is engaged in a creative task."
The clarion sounds as a wake-up call to Catholics as we provide a review of all past articles on the Church today
Like our other feature series, we present installments 1 through 105 of this series which is a set blueprint for Catholics everywhere to take up the banner of truth in defending Christ's One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church as we prepare for this glorious event - the second coming of Christ and the Reign of the Sacred Heart, the Second Pentecost, the Era of the Eucharistic Presence, the Advent of Peace. To read any of the over one-hundred previous installments in this long on-going series, click on the Archives ofWHERE IS HOLY MOTHER CHURCH HEADING AS WE NEAR THE MILLENNIUM?
The DAILY WORD
"Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of Heaven; but he who does the will of My Father in Heaven shall enter the kingdom of Heaven...Everyone therefore who hears these words and acts upon them, shall be likened to a wise man who built his house on rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, but it did not fall, because it was founded on rock."
Matthew 7: 21, 24-25
Today is the First Thursday of Advent while tomorrow we celebrate the Feast of the Jesuit Missionary Priest Saint Francis Xavier who brought the Faith to the Far East and India. For the readings, liturgies, meditations, and profile on St. Francis Xavier, click on DAILY LITURGY.
November 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message
Dear children! Also today I call you to prayer. In this time of grace, may the cross be a sign-post of love and unity for you through which true peace comes. That is why, little children, pray especially at this time that little Jesus, the Creator of peace, may be born in your hearts. Only through prayer will you become my apostles of peace in this world without peace. That is why, pray until prayer becomes a joy for you. Thank you for having responded to my call.
For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE
To review past articles in textonly format, click on Archives.