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Do not lose your public voice, Pope tells US bishops
cna ^ | November 26, 2011 | David Kerr

Posted on 11/27/2011 6:47:18 AM PST by NYer

Pope Benedict XVI - Credit: Mazur

Vatican City, Nov 26, 2011 / 02:56 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Benedict XVI has told bishops of the United States not to be silenced by those who seek to muzzle Catholicism in public life.

“Despite attempts to still the Church’s voice in the public square, many people of good will continue to look to her for wisdom, insight and sound guidance,” Pope Benedict said in his address to 20 bishops of New York gathered in the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace on Nov. 26.  

The Pope called upon them to “exercise the prophetic dimension of your episcopal ministry by speaking out, humbly yet insistently, in defense of moral truth, and offering a word of hope, capable of opening hearts and minds to the truth that sets us free.”

New York's bishops are in Rome for their regular “ad limina” visit to update the Pope and the Vatican on the health of the Church in their state. Their delegation is the second of 15 U.S. groups that will make their way to Rome in the coming months.

The dioceses represented this morning were New York, Albany, Brooklyn, Buffalo, Ogdensburg, Rochester, Rockville Centre and Syracuse.

At the Apostolic Palace, they heard from Pope Benedict about the need for a “new evangelization” of the United States, where people of many religious and political persuasions have shown an “increased sense of concern … for the future of our democratic societies.” 

Their concern stems from “a troubling breakdown in the intellectual, cultural and moral foundations of social life,” accompanied by “a growing sense of dislocation and insecurity, especially among the young, in the face of wide-ranging societal changes.”

A new evangelization of this society, the Pope said, would require spiritual and intellectual renewal within the Church.

“We ourselves are the first to need re-evangelization,” he said, adding that “only through such interior renewal will we be able to discern and meet the spiritual needs of our age with the ageless truth of the Gospel.”  

Catholic universities, he noted, should play a leading role in bringing the Gospel to society. Pope Benedict praised those schools that had found “a renewed sense of their ecclesial mission” and shown faithfulness to their Catholic identity.

“Young people have a right to hear clearly the Church’s teaching and, most importantly, to be inspired by the coherence and beauty of the Christian message,” the Pope stated, “so that they in turn can instill in their peers a deep love of Christ and his Church.”

He praised the bishops for tackling clerical abuse, saying the Church's “conscientious efforts to confront this reality” could “help the broader community to recognize the causes, true extent and devastating consequences of sexual abuse, and to respond effectively to this scourge which affects every level of society.”

Pope Benedict added that the Church is “rightly held to exacting standards in this regard,” and said “all other institutions, without exception, should be held to the same standards.”

The Pope also welcomed the new English translation of the Mass, which parishes across the nation will begin using this weekend.

He said the new translation should inspire an “ongoing catechesis,” helping the faithful grasp “the true nature of the liturgy” as a participation in “Christ’s saving sacrifice for the redemption of the world.” 

The Pope indicated that a right understanding of worship was essential for the Church's mission in society.

“A weakened sense of the meaning and importance of Christian worship,” he observed, “can only lead to a weakened sense of the specific and essential vocation of the laity to imbue the temporal order with the spirit of the Gospel.”

In the afternoon the visiting bishops celebrated Mass together at the basilica of St. Paul Outside-the-Walls, where the apostle St. Paul is buried.

The “ad limina” visit takes its name from the Latin phrase “ad limina apostolorum,” meaning “to the threshold of the apostles” Sts. Peter and Paul. The visiting bishops offered Mass at St. Peter's tomb yesterday.

TOPICS: Catholic; Current Events; Ministry/Outreach; Religion & Politics

1 posted on 11/27/2011 6:47:20 AM PST by NYer
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To: netmilsmom; thefrankbaum; Tax-chick; GregB; saradippity; Berlin_Freeper; Litany; SumProVita; ...

Pope Benedict XVI meets Nov. 4 with U.S. bishops from northeastern states on their "ad limina" visits to the Vatican. Seated from left are: Bishop Robert J. McManus of Worcester, Mass.; Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell of Springfield, Mass.; Bishop John B. Mc Cormack of Manchester, N.H.; Bishop Salvatore R. Matano of Burlington, Vt.; Pope Benedict XVI. Pictured at right are Bishop George W. Coleman of Fall River, Mass.; Auxiliary Bishop Francis J. Christian of Manchester, N.H.; and Bishop Richard J. Malone of Portland, Maine. CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano
2 posted on 11/27/2011 6:48:11 AM PST by NYer ("Be kind to every person you meet. For every person is fighting a great battle." St. Ephraim)
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To: NYer

Very interesting. Thanks for posting.

3 posted on 11/27/2011 6:51:49 AM PST by PGalt
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To: NYer
These words come from a Pope with a "towering intellect" and a "backbone of tempered steel."
There OUGHT to be a backbone test for all men becoming bishops in this country. At least there should be some practice: go to a meeting of hostiles and proclaim Biblical values of modesty, chastity, etc., and see how he deals with it...a BACKBONE test.

Whaddaya think?

4 posted on 11/27/2011 6:57:07 AM PST by cloudmountain
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To: cloudmountain

What ‘Voice’? You mean the one that kowtows to towering examples of ‘Catholicism’ like the Kennedys, Shaheen, Pelosi, Fr. Michael Pfleger, etc.? Or, wastes an enormous amount of time and resources on re-translating and changing the liturgy from one literary and stylistic abomination to another equally as awkward and offensive?

5 posted on 11/27/2011 7:11:17 AM PST by NHResident
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To: NYer

There is a concerted effort to herd Christians into their own little ghettos. Outside of which the 1st amendment is irrelevant.

6 posted on 11/27/2011 7:36:17 AM PST by DManA
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To: NYer

I wonder what he will say to Hubbard and Clark!

7 posted on 11/27/2011 3:34:34 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: NHResident

In what ways specifically. Give exact sources, please.

8 posted on 11/27/2011 5:23:49 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Pope Benedict XVI has told bishops of the United States not to be silenced by those who seek to muzzle Catholicism in public life.
“One side usually blesses us when we preach the virtue of fiscal responsibility, the civil rights of the unborn, the danger of government-tampering with the definition of marriage, and the principle of subsidiarity … Yet this same side then often cringes when we defend workers, speak on behalf of the rights of the undocumented immigrant, and remind government of the moral imperative to protect the poor.

The other side enjoys quoting us when we extol universal health care, question the death penalty, demand that every budget and program be assessed on whether it will help or hurt those in need, encourage international aid, and promote the principle of solidarity … and then these same folks bristle when we defend the rights of parents in education, those of the baby in the womb and grandma on her death bed, insist that America is at her best when people of faith have a respected voice in the public square, defend traditional marriage, and remind government that it has no right to intrude in Church affairs, but does have the obligation to protect the rights of conscience.

So, we bishops get both blessed and blasted, a friend or foe of bloggers, pundits, and politicians, depending on what the issue is.”
-- Archbishop Timothy Dolan, President USCCB, on the thread CARA suggests polls on creation of a third party: Christian Democrats

9 posted on 11/28/2011 6:50:04 AM PST by Alex Murphy (
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