December 23, 1999

  • Tomorrow the Holy Father will officially open the Holy Door at St. Peter's on Christmas Eve, ushering in the Jubilee Year 2000 with over a billion and a half watching via satellite
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December 23, 1999
vol. 10, no. 244

Final Thursday
of Late Advent plus feast of Saint John of Kanty

with a Catholic slant


Over a billion and a half people to watch opening of Holy Door tomorrow night

    The significance of the Holy Door and its meaning won't be lost on viewers - one billion, six hundred thousand of them as are projected to watch via satellite the three hour ceremony that will officially launch the Jubilee Year 2000 when the Holy Father walks over the threshold of the Holy Door leading the faithful into the new era. The door, a gift from the Swiss to Pope Pius XII a half century ago, has great meaning that symbolizes the purpose of this great event in Church history which will be viewed from around the world including communist Cuba and Korea not to mention hundreds of other countries where television isn't as common as in America. Besides EWTN televising it live and on the web, the Odyssey Channel will televise it on a tape delay. For more, click on Opening the Holy Door

Archbishop of Caracas calls for prayer and fasting in atonement for the travails visited on Venezuela where fatality rate is over 40,000 and climbing.

    With over 300,000 left homeless and a count that could surpass 50,000 dead from the devastating floods of biblical proportion in northern Venezuela in and around Caracas and other coastal areas, the country was at the mercy of the world for help. The head of the see of Caracas Archbishop Ignacio Velasco said in his homily that, like in the Old Testament, this could be a sign that God is not happy with His people in this northernmost country of South America and has sent this terrible disaster to wake the people up and bring them back to Him. He urged all to fast and pray. For more, click on Venezuela .

Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem expresses hope that men of good will will shine forth as leading lights in the peace process with Israel and the Arab kingdom

   On the advent of Jubilee Year 2000 and the new millennium Latin Patriarch Michel Sabbah of Jerusalem disclosed in his annual Christmas message the hopes of all Christian Palestinians that the peace processes underway between Israel and Syria and Palestine will develop into lasting peace where all - Christian, Jew and Arab can share and prosper equally in harmony, allowing all to worship freely with no restrictions. He cited the vast importance of this area due to its heritage as God's chosen land and called on politicians to take that into account in protecting human dignity for all. For more, click on Peace on earth to men of good will.

It won't be a peaceful Christmas in Eastern Africa as war continues between Ethiopia and Eritrea

    The Papal Envoy to the warring nations of Ethiopia and Eritrea Archbishop Silvano Tomasi acknowledged it will not be a peaceful Christmas for there is none in this eastern region of Africa where wars between the two countries have taken their toll over a border dispute that has thrown both countries into turmoil killing tens of thousands in senseless slaughters adding to the trauma of this region where the vast Sudan lies to the west bordering both countries and waiting for the spoils. The archbishop prayed that He expressed hope that the peace talks presided over by Algeria can be worked out to everyone's satisfaction. Both Ethiopia and Eritrea want control over the Horn of Africa and ne'r the twain shall meet. Until it does, war will continue and it will not be a peaceful Christmas For more, click on Peace on earth shallow in East Africa .

For more headlines and articles, we suggest you go to the Catholic World News site at the CWN home page and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and the features, dossiers and Daily Dispatches at ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

Coming tomorrow in our year-end Christmas-New Year's issue:

  • Christmas messages from Pat Ludwa, Sister Mary Lucy Astuto, Father Al Svobodny OMI, Cyndi Cain and the DAILY CATHOLIC Editor plus a pre-Christmas message and Special Poem from Pope John Paul II.

  • The seventy-eighth installment in our new feature on the treasures of the great Deposit of Faith in our daily series APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH

  • Time Capsules in Church History with MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES focusing on December 24th through January 2, 2000.

  • DAILY LITURGY for Christmas Eve through the Epiphany of the Lord.

  • Another gem from SIMPLY SHEEN and we highlight another Prince of the Church: Cardinal Hyacinthe Thiandoum of Senegal in our COLLEGE OF CARDINALS COLLECTION

  • ...and much more in our final issue for second millennium!
  • "Stuart Little" makes cheese of competition by going just that extra length to beat out The Green Mile" and put "Toy Story 2" in third place.

    Top Ten Films for second week of December

        A little mouse named "Stuart Little" knocked Mickey Mouse and his company's "Toy Story 2" off its top perch into third place this past week. By just decimals Sony's "Stuart Little" squeaked out a narrow victory over Tom Hanks and the huge, gentle giant Michael Clarke Duncan in "The Green Mile" which finished a strong second picking up steam from word-of-mouth reviews. Finally, the top three movies are worth seeing and the American public is responding. The best news of the week is that the dog "Dogma" dropped out of sight and into the garbage bin where it belongs. If only "Deuce Bigalow" would do the same! Two other newcomers "Bicentennial Man" and "Anna and the King" finished a disappointing fifth and sixth while "The World is Not Enough" continued its strong showing in number 7th, followed by "End of Days" and "Sleepy Hollow". "The Bone Collector" collected the last spot for the week. This week a plethora of new movies for the holidays is expected to drastically alter this list. We are bringing you this feature today since tomorrow will be our special Christmas-New Year's issue. For the Top Ten reviews for the second week of December prepared by the NCCB, click on MOVIES AND MORALS

    Appreciation of the Old Testament from Ezechiel to Zephaniah

        Today we continue our search to uncover the wonderful treasures of the Church contained in the great Deposit of Faith with our series on the Bible and Sacred Scripture, presenting an overview of each of the Old Testament books, featuring today the Books of Ezechiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habuccuc, and Zephaniah. For the seventy-seventh installment, click on APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH

    Events that happened this day in Church History

        On this date 1,380 years ago in 882 Pope Boniface V was elected as the 69th successor of Peter. He was the first Sovereign Pontiff to proclaim "sanctuary" to protect and shelter in the churches those who were being persecuted. By declaring sanctuary, authorities and those who respected Roman law could not pass the threshold to apprehend them. It was also during his pontificate that the self-annointed prophet Mohammed began proselytising a new creed from Allah. Little did Boniface and leaders of the Church know then the great scourge he would penetrate on the Church in the coming centuries. For other pertinent events throughout the centuries that are memorable in Church history today, click on MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES

    Crying out loud for love

        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".

    "The effect of want of love is the martyrdom complex, which is a morbid attempt to get pity or sympathy when real love is gone. Feigning sickness is one of the tricks. Because good health does not win the affection of others, one pretends to be wounded in the firm hope that someone else will bind the wounds. The 'pain' which is in the mind is the loss of love. That 'pain' is translated into the body and becomes sickness. If one could put into words what goes on inside of such a person it might be this: 'I really want to be well. But if I become sick, then others must love me.'"

    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?


    "Now Elizabeth's time was fulfilled that she should be delivered, and she brought forth a son. And her neighbors and kinsfolk heard that the Lord had magnified His mercy towards her, and they rejoiced with her. And it came to pass on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to call him by his father's name, Zachary. And his mother answered and said, 'Not so, but he shall be called John.' "

    Luke 1: 57-60


        Today is the Final Thursday of Late Advent and the optional feast of the Polish priest Saint John of Kanty. Tomorrow, after observing the Final Friday of Late Advent, we celebrate with the Church the Christmas Vigil on the same date this year that the Jewish Hannukah begins. For the readings, liturgies, and meditations, 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.
    COUNTDOWN TO THE JUBILEE: 1 Day and counting, hoping and praying...

    Finally the long-awaited books "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..." and THE HIDDEN WAY are NOW available!

       With the messages completed, you can now order the book that contains ALL the messages. This much-anticipated 224-page book of ALL the messages to the world imparted to the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart from the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary is a lasting gift that will inspire you in your faith, and all God asks of us. You can acquire your own handsome, coffee-table top copy of "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..." containing all 632 messages or the THE HIDDEN WAY containing 100 inspirational Meditative Lessons from Our Lord and Our Lady on Church Doctrine by clicking on "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..." or THE HIDDEN WAY or both books at BOOKS

    December 23, 1999       volume 10, no. 244

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