The Holy Father´s Week: June 15, 2009

A report on Benedict XVI´s messages and activities.
by Maribel de Torres | Source:

True religion and true philosophy coincide. At the general audience in St. Peter's Square, Benedict XVI continued the catechetical series he is giving about great writers of the Church in the Middle Ages. He spoke about John Scotus Erigena, an influential Christian thinker of the Carolingian period.
The Pontiff explained "we cannot speak of God starting from our inventions, but rather from what God himself says about himself in sacred Scripture. Given that God only speaks the truth, Scotus Erigena is convinced that authority and reason should never be in contraposition one against the other. He is convinced that true religion and true philosophy coincide." 
According to John Scotus, thanks to Scripture, “our rational nature can introduce itself into the secrets of the authentic pure contemplation of God”
 “The word of sacred Scripture purifies our rather blind reason and helps us to return to the memory of what we, as image of God, carry in our hearts, unfortunately violated by sin.”
John Scotus wrote: "The only thing that must be desired,is the joy of the truth, which is Christ, and the only thing that must be avoided is the absence of him. It should be considered that this [absence] is the only cause of total and eternal sadness. Take Christ from me and no good whatsoever remains for me; there is nothing that terrifies me as much as his absence. The worst torment of a rational creature is the privation and the absence of him."
"These are words that we can make our own," the Bishop of Rome concluded, "converting them into a prayer to him who also is the longing of our hearts." VATICAN CITY, JUNE 10, 2009

The Pope spoke about the feast of Corpus Christi before concluding the general audience,
The Pontiff addressed youth and children who have just made their first Communion to express his hope that "the sacrament of the Body and the Blood of Christ would be the spiritual nourishment of each day to move forward along the path to sanctity."
He presented the Eucharist to the sick as their "support and consolation in trials and in suffering."
And expressed his wish for newlyweds that the Eucharist be "the deep motive for your love that is expressed in your daily actions." VATICAN CITY, JUNE 10, 2009

Faith cannot be taken for granted. The Pope warned against the temptation to reduce prayer to superficial and hurried moments, letting oneself be carried away by earthly activities and worries."
He celebrated the feast of Corpus Christi today in Rome, presiding over Mass in the Basilica of St. John Lateran and then processing with the Blessed Sacrament to the Basilica of St. Mary Major.
 In his homily, the Holy Father illustrated the importance of faith in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, telling the thousands of pilgrims that this faith "cannot be taken for granted."
Benedict XVI warned of a "serpentine secularization" that penetrates the Church and is manifested in "formal and empty Eucharistic worship." ROME, JUNE 11, 2009

Since love exists, things can change. Benedict XVI spoke about “"Corpus Domini," the feast of the Eucharist, before praying the Angelus in St. Peter's Square. “In a unique and peculiar way, this feast speaks to us of divine love, of what it is and what it does.” He said, “It tells us, for example, that it regenerates itself in giving itself, it receives itself in giving itself, it does not run out and is not used up.”
“Love transforms every thing, and so we understand that the mystery of transubstantiation, the sign of Jesus-Charity, which transforms the world, is at the center of today's feast of "Corpus Domini."
"Looking upon him and worshiping him, we say: Yes, love exists, and since it exists, things can change for the better and we can hope. It is the hope that comes from Christ's love that gives us the strength to live and to face every difficulty.” The Holy Father explained. 
“We all have need of this bread, because the road to freedom, justice and peace is long and wearisome.” VATICAN CITY, JUNE 14, 2009

Speaking about the Bread of Life. The Holy Father remembered the hundreds of millions of persons who suffer from hunger. “It is an absolutely unacceptable reality that is hard to control despite the efforts of recent decades”, he said. He mentioned that at the United Nations in New York June 24-26 there will be a conference on the economic and financial crisis and its impact on development.
“I hope, therefore, that at the upcoming U.N. conference and in the headquarters of international institutions the joint measures are taken by the entire international community and the strategic decisions are made -- which are sometimes difficult to accept -- that are necessary to ensure that everyone, in the present and the future, will have basic nourishment and a dignified life.” VATICAN CITY, JUNE 14, 2009

Other papal messages and activities.

Benedict XVI defended the right and duty of Venezuela's bishops to enlighten public life with the Gospel. The Pope spoke of this obligation when he received in audience today the South American bishops, in Rome for their five-yearly visit. The Bishop of Rome acknowledged the challenges facing the Venezuelan prelates, added to, moreover, by the global recession.
But, he stated, "the current time also offers numerous and real motives for hope, this hope that is capable of filling the hearts of man." VATICAN CITY, JUNE 8, 2009

Benedict XVI urged deep examination in Ireland. According to the archbishop of Dublin who met with the Holy Father, he was "visibly upset" regarding last month's report of the widespread abuse of children in Ireland's Catholic schools.
Cardinal Sean Brady, archbishop of Armagh, said the Holy Father called for establishing the truth of what happened and putting in place measures that will prevent it from happening again. MAYNOOTH, Ireland, JUNE 9, 2009

Holy Father sent a message to 80.000 participants in an annual youth gathering in Poland. The Pontiff called on youth to be witnesses of the love of Christ in all areas of life, including their schools and universities, Vatican Radio reported Sunday.
He stated, "Choose Christ so that in each moment of your life -- whether happy or difficult -- you will have the interior certainty that he sustains you with the grace and power of the Holy Spirit." LEDNICA, Poland, JUNE 9, 2009

New Orleans native to lead Archdiocese. Benedict XVI appointed Bishop Gregory Aymond, currently serving in Austin, Texas, to lead his home archdiocese of New Orleans.
Archbishop Aymond, 59, will succeed Archbishop Alfred Hughes, 76, who retired for reasons of age. NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana, JUNE 12, 2009

Benedict XVI spiritually close to the participants in the 31st march for peace from Macerata to Loreto.
The Pope expressed his good wishes in a message sent to the participants, who will make the march Saturday night. He also blessed the flame of peace last Wednesday during the general audience. ROME, JUNE 12, 2009

Benedict XVI´s third Encyclical to be published soon. The Pope spoke of this when he received in audience members of the Centesimus Annus Pro Pontifice Foundation.
The encyclical is expected to be called "Veritas in Caritate," and it is thought that it will be published June 29, feast of Sts. Peter and Paul.
"It will highlight what, for us Christians, are the objectives to be pursued and the values to be promoted and tirelessly defended, with the purpose of realizing a truly free and solidary human coexistence," the Holy Father explained. VATICAN CITY, JUNE 13, 2009

The Pope entrusted to our prayers the Year for Priests. It will begin the Day of Priestly Sanctification, next Friday, the solemnity of the most Sacred Heart of Jesus,  on the 150th anniversary of the death of the holy Curé of Ars. “I entrust to your prayers this new spiritual initiative that follows the Pauline Year, which is now concluding. May this new jubilee year be a propitious occasion to reflect on the value and importance of the priestly mission and to ask the Lord to make a gift of many priests to his Church.” The Holy Father said. VATICAN CITY, JUNE 14, 2009

A prayer for the Holy Father
Christ Jesus, King and Lord of the Church, in your presence I renew my unconditional loyalty to your Vicar on earth, the Pope. In him you have chosen to show us the safe and sure path that we must follow in the midst of confusion, uneasiness, and unrest. I firmly believe that through him you govern, teach, and sanctify us; with him as our shepherd, we form the true Church: one, holy, catholic, and apostolic. Grant me the grace to love, live, and spread faithfully our Holy Father’s teachings. Watch over his life, enlighten his mind, strengthen his spirit, defend him from calumny and evil. Calm the erosive winds of infidelity and disobedience. Hear our prayer and keep your Church united around him, firm in its belief and action, that it may truly be the instrument of your redemption. Amen.

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