Monthly Archives: December 2012

† Prayer for a Blessing on the New Year †

31 December 2012

Always Catholic Blog wishes a blessed and holy New Year to all.
 

O Sacred and Adorable Trinity, hear our prayers on behalf of our Holy Father the Pope, our Bishops, our clergy, and for all that are in authority over us. Bless, we beseech Thee, during the coming year, the whole Catholic Church; convert heretics and unbelievers; soften the hearts of sinners so that they may return to Thy friendship; give prosperity to our country and peace among the nations of the world; pour down Thy blessings upon our friends, relatives, and acquaintances, and upon our enemies, if we have any; assist the poor and the sick; have pity on the souls of those whom this year has taken from us; and do Thou be merciful to those who during the coming year will be summoned before Thy judgment seat. May all our actions be preceded by Thy inspirations and carried on by Thy assistance, so that all our prayers and works, having been begun in Thee, may likewise be ended through Thee. Amen.

Source: CatholicOnline.org


Feast of the Holy Innocents (Childermas) via Fisheaters.com

28 December 2012

In the second chapter of the Book of Matthew is recorded the story of the Massacre of the Holy Innocents, an event which recalls the Pharaoh’s instructions to midwives during the time Israel was enslaved in Egypt:

Exodus 1:15-16, 22:
And the king of Egypt spoke to the midwives of the Hebrews: of whom one was called Sephora, the other Phua, Commanding them: When you shall do the office of midwives to the Hebrew women, and the time of delivery is come: if it be a man child, kill it: if a woman, keep it alive…

…Pharao therefore charged all his people, saying: Whatsoever shall be born of the male sex, ye shall cast into the river: whatsoever of the female, ye shall save alive.

Moses was saved from this murder when his mother placed him in a little ark and floated him in the river. Moses’s sister watched from afar as the Pharaoh’s daughter found the child (Exodus 2). The massacre from which Moses was spared is a type, a foreshadowing, of the massacre of the holy innocents that took place soon after Christ was born.

As to the slaughter of the Innocents in the New Testament, first some background: Herod the Great, the Governor of Galilee, was an Idumean Jew whom History describes as an extremely cruel man: he was a man who killed several of his wives and his own sons when he suspected they were plotting against him. Challenges to his power were met with a swift and final response, and he even tried to ensure that his cruel campaigns survived him when he arranged that on the day he went on to his eternal reward, hundreds of men in the area would be killed so that there would be mourning at his funeral. Though this arrangement was never carried out, it speaks well of Herod’s nature.

And during this tyrant’s reign, the Magi — whose adoration of Baby Jesus is remembered on the Epiphany (6 January) and its Eve (Twelfthnight) — saw the Star of Bethlehem and went to Jerusalem, asking where the new King of Jews may be found. Herod heard of their asking around about the newborn King and, calling the high priests to find out about this this Child, was informed that it was prophecied that the Child would be born in Judea.

Threatened by this prophecy, he sent for the Magi to find the Child and report back so he could go and “worship,” too. The Magi found Jesus but, knowing Herod’s heart after having it revealed to them in a dream, didn’t go back to tell Herod of His whereabouts.

Meanwhile, the Holy Family, warned through St. Joseph who was visited by an angel in a dream, makes their flight into Egypt.

Herod became enraged at the Wise Men “betrayal,” and killed all the baby boys in Bethlehem who were two years old and younger.

The fourth day of Christmas commemorates these baby boys, who are considered martyrs — the very first martyrs (St. Stephen, whose Feast was commemorated 2 days ago, was the first martyr of the Church Age). As Bethlehem was a small town, the number of these Holy Innocents was probably no more than 25, but they are glorious martyrs who died not only for Christ, but in His place. Vestments will be red or purple in mourning, and the Alleluia and Gloria will be suppressed at Mass.

For the rest of the post, please click HERE


“…so that we may dare to love Him”

28 December 2012

Pope Benedict: May God Grant Us the Curiosity to Know Him
28 December 2012 Anno Domini

Posted by Lisa Graas at her blog, CatholicBandita.com

The following is the homily given by Pope Benedict XVI on December 24. Since it is on the importance of recognizing Jesus Christ and knowing Him, my favorite topic (identity in Christ), I’ve decided to go ahead and post it. There are many who say they know Jesus, but do they know the real Jesus, and do they know Him in all His fullness? Do they know Him so well that they would recognize Him if He came to them in an unexpected form? I am in love with Jesus, but even I do not know Him in all fullness. That can only happen fully in heaven. And so, it is important for me, and for all of us, to at least have the curiosity to know Him more and more in our lives. That is what a relationship is. It is not a one-time experience. It is a life experience to come to know Jesus more and more.

Vatican City, 24 December 2012 (VIS) – The Pope tonight celebrated Midnight Mass in the Vatican Basilica for the Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord.

Pope Benedict XVI kneels as he celebrates the Christmas Eve Mass in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican on Monday, Dec. 24, 2012. (photo credit: Gregorio Borgia/AP)

During the Eucharistic celebration, following the reading of the Gospel, the Holy Father delivered his homily, ample extracts from which are given below:

“Again and again it astonishes us that God makes Himself a child so that we may love Him, so that we may dare to love Him, and as a child trustingly lets Himself be taken into our arms. It is as if God were saying: I know that my glory frightens you, and that you are trying to assert yourself in the face of my grandeur. So now I am coming to you as a child, so that you can accept me and love me.

Editor’s Note: The first line of this homily will stay with me forever… Please click HERE to go to the rest of the homily posted on Lisa’s Blog.


I stand with Lisa Graas !

20 December 2012

Why I Am Withdrawing Support From Rick Santorum

by Lisa Graas, at her blog, CatholicBandita
20 December 2012 Anno Domini

Ironically, Pete Ingemi wrote today on why Rick Santorum deserves our support just as I am withdrawing support from him for his abandoning that very same value.

Pete quotes Rick Santorum here:

America is a melting pot, not a salad bowl. America is a set of values by which we hold together. That’s what holds us together, but there is a different point of view. Some have suggested that no America shouldn’t be and is wrong to be, one thing. It needs to be many things. It needs to be what any everybody wants to do. Out of one many. If that’s the case then is anybody surprised that we have trouble getting anything done for the one, the country?

Pete continues:

Lisa Graas yesterday reminded of these words before the Des Moines Register saying this:

But as Rick Santorum told the editorial board of the Des Moines Register back during the primary, most politicians think of the issues as “little silos” and if one of the “silos” is not popular, the politician can just kick that silo down and take a new position. He sees “the big picture” of where our rights come from, and the very limited role of our government in defending only those rights.

the story continues HERE  and a great discussion at Lisa’s FB page HERE

 


Christmas Novena – December 16th – 24th

16 December 2012

A Christmas novena is usually prayed, starting nine days before Christmas. The following novena was composed by an Italian priest, Rev. Charles Vachetta, C.M., in 1721. Most of the material comes from the Old Testament prophecies and the Psalms referring to the promised Redeemer.

The novena consists of Opening Responsory Prayers, Psalm (Let the Heavens Be Glad), Scripture Reading, Magnificat with Daily Antiphon and Closing Prayer.

This novena is prayed in conjunction with the O Antiphons,
and if you are using an O Antiphon House or Tower, you would open the windows during this prayer.

Prayer:

Opening Prayers:

Father: O Lord, open my lips.
All: And my mouth shall proclaim Your praise.

Father: O God, come to my assistance.
All: O Lord, make haste to help me. Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen. Alleluia.

Father:
Our Lord and King is drawing near, O come, let us adore Him.
All: Our Lord and King is drawing near, O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child: Rejoice, O you daughter of Sion and exult fully, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, the Lord and Master comes, and there shall be a brilliant light in that day, and the mountains shall drop down sweetness, and hills flow with milk and honey, for in that day the Great Prophet will come, and He Himself will renew Jerusalem.
All: Our Lord and King is drawing near, O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child: Behold, the God-man of the house of David will come to sit upon the royal throne, and you will see Him and your heart will rejoice.
All: O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child: Behold, the Lord our Protector will come to save us, Israel’s holy One, wearing the crown of royalty on His noble brow and He will exercise His rule from sea to shining sea, and from the waters of the river to the ends of the earth.
All: O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child: Behold, the Lord and King will appear, and He will not deceive; but if He should delay, wait for Him to come; He will surely come and will not tarry.
All: O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child:
The Lord will come down like rain upon the fleece of Gideon; justice will thrive and an abundance of true peace; all the kings of the lands of the earth will adore Him, and every nation will serve Him.
All: O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child:
A Child will be born to us, and He will be called God the almighty; He will sit upon the royal throne of David His father, and He will hold sway, the sign of His power on His shoulder.
All: O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child: Bethlehem, city of the Most High God, from you will come forth the King of Israel, and He will proceed forth from His eternity; and He will be greatly praised in the midst of the entire universe; and there will be peace in our land when He will have come.
All: Our Lord and King is drawing near, O come, let us adore Him.

(On the Eve of Christmas add:)

Eldest Child: Tomorrow the wickedness of the whole world will be destroyed, and over us will reign the Savior of the world. All: Our Lord and King is drawing near, O come, let us adore Him.

Eldest Child: Near at last is Christ our King. All: O come, let us adore Him.


Let the Heavens Be Glad

All:Blow ye the trumpet in Sion, for the day of the Lord is nigh: behold, He will come to save us, alleluia, alleluia!

The following prayer can be said all together, or each phrase recited alternately.

Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice. O all you mountains, praise the Lord.

Let the mountains break forth into gladness, and the hills with justice.

For the Lord shall come and to the poor He shall show mercy.

Drop down dew, you heavens, from above and let the clouds rain the Just One;

Let the earth be opened and bud forth the Savior.

Be mindful of us, O Lord, and visit us in Your salvation.

Show to us, O Lord, Your mercy, and grant us your salvation.

Come, O Lord, in peace visit us that with a perfect heart we may rejoice before You.

Come, O Lord, do not tarry; do away with the offenses of Your people.

Come and show to us Your countenance, O Lord. You sit upon the cherubim.

Father: Glory to the Father and the Son and to the Holy Spirit. All: As it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen.

All: Blow ye the trumpet in Sion, for the day of the Lord is nigh: behold, He will come to save us, alleluia, alleluia!


Scripture Reading

December 16: Genesis 3:1-15; Romans 1:18-26

December 17: Genesis 3:14-20; Romans 5:12-21

December 18: Genesis 17:15-23; Romans 4:13-23

December 19: Deuteronomy 15:13-20; Acts 3:18-26

December 20: Isaiah 28:14-20; Romans 10:5-11

December 21: 1 Samuel 2:1-10; Luke 1:26-39

December 22: Deuteronomy 7:6-21; Ephesians 2:12-22

December 23: Isaiah 7:10-16; Matthew 1:18-25

December 24: Micah 5:1-5; Luke 2:1-8

All: Thanks be to God.

Leader: Drop down dew from above, O you heavens, and let the clouds rain the Just One.


Daily Antiphons for the Magnificat

16. Behold, the King will come, the Lord of the earth, and He will remove from us the yoke of our captivity.

17. O Wisdom, who came from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from end to end and ordering all things mightily and sweetly, Come, and teach us the way of prudence.

18. O Lord and Ruler of the House of Israel, who appeared to Moses in the flame of the burning bush and gave him the law on Sinai: Come and redeem us with outstretched arm.

19. O Root of Jesse, who stands for an ensign of the people, before whom kinds shall keep silence and unto whom the Gentiles shall make supplication: Come to deliver us, and tarry not.

20. O Key of David, and Sceptre of the House of Israel, who opens and no man shuts, who shuts and no man opens: Come and bring forth the captive from his prison, he who sits in darkness and in the shadow of death.

21. O King of the Gentiles and their desired One, the Cornerstone that makes both one: Come, and deliver man, whom You formed out the dust of the earth.

22. O King of the Gentiles and their desired One, the Cornerstone that makes both one: Come, and deliver man, whom You formed out of the dust of the earth.

23. O Emmanuel, God with us, our King and Lawgiver, the expected of the nations and their Savior: Come to save us, O Lord our God.

24. With the rising of the sun, you will soon see the King of kings and Lord of lords, coming forth from His Father, as the bridegroom, from His bridal chamber.


Magnificat

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior for He has looked with favor on His lowly servant.

From this day all generations will call me blessed; the Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name.

He has mercy on those who fear Him in every generation.

He has shown the strength of His arm, He has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, And has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, And the rich He has sent away empty.

He come to the help of his servant Israel for He has remembered His promise of mercy, the promise He made to our fathers, to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit

As it was in the beginning, is now and will be forever. Amen. (All: Repeat the Antiphon for the Day)

Thank you to CatholicCulture.org & the Daughters of Saint Paul.


The “Austen Hermeneutic”: Old Mass vis a vis New Mass

16 December 2012

Originally posted by FatherZ in February 2010 and we posted it at ACBlog in October. We are reprinting the post today in honor of Miss Austen’s 237th birthday…

Sometimes I think that I’m not normal.

If I had three things in the world I could keep with me in Heaven, it would be @CatholicTeen & her brothers, New Jersey pizza with WISCONSIN cheese and the complete Jane Austen under one cover (yes it DOES exist).

I know you are saying, “What is it with these Jane Austen people?” We aren’t really normal, we talk about Austen ,Darcy & all this other stuff no one else understands except other fanatical Austenites like ourselves. The reason is that Jane keeps us sane…(LOL!) How does she do this?

First, she has written six of the greatest novels in the English language. Second, these novels are not romance novels (although romance is part of it) but stories about real people and the interaction between them. Austen really is more of a social/behavioral scientist when it comes to her writing. No one knows this more than men when they feel obliged by their wives or girlfriends to actually read one of her novels. Surprised by how much they like her style & her characters, men tend to be as fanatical about Jane as women once they “get” her.
Third, Jane keeps civil society something for us to always pine for even if we know it will never be like Regency England again.
Finally, Jane gives us hope that men and women, mothers & fathers, sons & daughters, et al will live together, love each other and be happy in the end.

Now, given all of this, what is the Austen Hermeneutic? Well, it is a piece written some months ago comparing the Ordinary form of the Mass & the Extraordinary form of the Mass(Latin Mass) to characters from Pride & Prejudice, Austen’s most famous novel. The day I found this at FatherZ’s blog, I realized just how not normal I was. I absolutely could not think of anything written on a blog that made more interested or more happy. I realized at this point, that it is All Jane Austen, all the time…the world according to Jane…now even my adored Latin Mass was being compared to Austen characters. You just can’t make this up!!!

I wanted to put it on the blog when I first started it in March, but knew the time wasn’t right. I wanted to put it out there when I felt that others would really appreciate this.

So, I wrote a piece a week or so ago about the Carmelite Monks of Wyoming, a woman who helped them and referenced Austen. I received a tweet from a friend who said, ” nerdwriter: @alwayscatholic Jane Austen AND Carmelite Monks in a single post? Someone pinch me. “

I laughed so joyfully as I realized it’s time for the Austen Latin Mass piece. So this is for my friend, @nerdwriter and all the other not normal people in the world who love Jane Austen and keep her memory alive.. Enjoy this Latin Mass/Austen post and remember SOMEBODY PLEASE PINCH ME!!

Posted originally on 28 February 2010 by Fr. John Zuhlsdorf, at his blog, What does the Prayer Say?

There is a fun post over at St. Louis Catholic:

If today’s faithful Catholic is represented by Elizabeth Bennet, bright, hopeful and coming of age, then the liturgical forms would have to be represented by Mr. Darcy and Mr. Wickham.

Lizzie & Wickham

Mr. Wickham is immediately accessible, loves to talk–especially about how bad ol’ Darcy is– has some initial minor flash but soon proves to be tedious and unreliable.

Lizzie & Darcy

Mr. Darcy at first glance looks stuffy and Mr. Darcy condescending, but proves over time to be noble, true, of high quality and charitable.

The ordinary and the extraordinary.

____________________________

Yes, I actually thought this, and then typed it, and therefore I am a loser. [No… people who can’t refer to Austen are the losers.]

P.S. Mrs. Bennet would represent Marek Bozek. Just sayin’. [LOL]


Excellent!Thanks @FatherZ, we love ya and I bet Jane loves ya too!


JANE AUSTEN SOIREE – A CELEBRATION OF JANE AUSTEN’S BIRTHDAY – GIVEAWAY HOP

16 December 2012

Sunday, 16 December 2012
by Maria Grazia at her blog, “The Jane Austen Book Club”

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JANE!

Thanks to all the Janeites who will drop by and decide to celebrate Jane Austen’s birthday with us. It is a very special day, one in which I feel we must express our gratitude to our beloved best favourite author and spread the love for her and her work.
This event, The Jane Austen Soirée is a simple hop, linking a few blogs, the ones you find listed below, in the effort to celebrate Jane’s talent and wit.
The Austenite bloggers involved are posting their favourite page from their favourite Austen novel and readers will have the chance to win some gorgeous Austen gifts in several giveaway contests.
After taking your chances in the rafflecopter form at the end of this post, check out all the blogs taking part in the event. Good luck and Happy Jane Austen Soirée, everyone!

For the complete post and a chance to enter the Giveaway Hop for some stunning Austen gifts, please click HERE!

Sofia’s favorite page from her favorite Jane Austen novel, Persuasion…

“She had only time, however, to move closer to the table where he had been writing, when footsteps were heard returning; the door opened, it was himself. He begged their pardon, but he had forgotten his gloves, and instantly crossing the room to the writing table, he drew out a letter from under the scattered paper, placed it before Anne with eyes of glowing entreaty fixed on her for a time, and hastily collecting his gloves, was again out of the room, almost before Mrs Musgrove was aware of his being in it: the work of an instant!

The revolution which one instant had made in Anne, was almost beyond expression. The letter, with a direction hardly legible, to “Miss A. E.–,” was evidently the one which he had been folding so hastily. While supposed to be writing only to Captain Benwick, he had been also addressing her! On the contents of that letter depended all which this world could do for her. Anything was possible, anything might be defied rather than suspense. Mrs Musgrove had little arrangements of her own at her own table; to their protection she must trust, and sinking into the chair which he had occupied, succeeding to the very spot where he had leaned and written, her eyes devoured the following words:

“I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant. You alone have brought me to Bath. For you alone, I think and plan. Have you not seen this? Can you fail to have understood my wishes? I had not waited even these ten days, could I have read your feelings, as I think you must have penetrated mine. I can hardly write. I am every instant hearing something which overpowers me. You sink your voice, but I can distinguish the tones of that voice when they would be lost on others. Too good, too excellent creature! You do us justice, indeed. You do believe that there is true attachment and constancy among men. Believe it to be most fervent, most undeviating, in F. W.

“I must go, uncertain of my fate; but I shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look, will be enough to decide whether I enter your father’s house this evening or never.”

Such a letter was not to be soon recovered from. Half an hour’s solitude and reflection might have tranquillized her; but the ten minutes only which now passed before she was interrupted, with all the restraints of her situation, could do nothing towards tranquillity. Every moment rather brought fresh agitation. It was overpowering happiness. And before she was beyond the first stage of full sensation, Charles, Mary, and Henrietta all came in.

The absolute necessity of seeming like herself produced then an immediate struggle; but after a while she could do no more. She began not to understand a word they said, and was obliged to plead indisposition and excuse herself. They could then see that she looked very ill, were shocked and concerned, and would not stir without her for the world. This was dreadful. Would they only have gone away, and left her in the quiet possession of that room it would have been her cure; but to have them all standing or waiting around her was distracting, and in desperation, she said she would go home.”


“Ave Fit Ex Eva!” A post for celebrating the Holy Season…

9 December 2012

9 December 2012 Anno Domini
by David L. Alexander at his blog, ManwithBlackHat

It is possible for Christmas carols, not only to be appropriate for the season leading up to the great feast, but to never mention Christmas itself. And no, by the latter notion, we don’t mean “Jingle Bells.”

With the Incarnation, we begin the focal point of salvation history, its end being the passion, death, and resurrection of Christ, and His ascension into Glory. And while the whole of Christendom follows, what precedes that story is what helps us to prepare.

Now for the rest of the post please click HERE…


@Bishop_Jenky tweeted this to us…thank you, Your Excellency!

6 December 2012

Please follow His Excellency, Bishop Daniel Jenky, CSC on Twitter @Bishop_Jenky on FaceBook and at his blog, Bishop Daniel Jenky CSC



“The Holy Father is flyin’ like lightenin’! Yes, @CatholicLisa, he is!

2 December 2012

Pope Benedict: Catholic Charities ‘required to follow Catholic principles’
2 December 2012 Anno Domini
by Lisa Graas
at her blog, “CatholicBandita.com

Well, now, this is welcome news indeed. Pope Benedict XVI today set down a motu proprio letter addressed to Catholic charitable organizations in which he delineates certain rules to be followed.

Hat-tip, New Advent and Whispers in the Loggia.


Introduction

“The Church’s deepest nature is expressed in her three-fold responsibility: of proclaiming the word of God (kerygma-martyria), celebrating the sacraments (leitourgia) and exercising the ministry of charity (diakonia). These duties presuppose each other and are inseparable” (Deus Caritas Est, 25).

The service of charity is also a constitutive element of the Church’s mission and an indispensable expression of her very being (cf. ibid.); all the faithful have the right and duty to devote themselves personally to living the new commandment that Christ left us (cf. Jn 15:12), and to offering our contemporaries not only material assistance, but also refreshment and care for their souls (cf. Deus Caritas Est, 28). The Church is also called as a whole to the exercise of the diakonia of charity, whether in the small communities of particular Churches or on the level of the universal Church. This requires organization “if it is to be an ordered service to the community” (cf. ibid., 20), an organization which entails a variety of institutional expressions.

With regard to this diakonia of charity, in my Encyclical Deus Caritas Est I pointed out that “in conformity with the episcopal structure of the Church, the Bishops, as successors of the Apostles, are charged with primary responsibility for carrying out in the particular Churches” the service of charity (No. 32); at the same time, however, I noted that “the Code of Canon Law, in the canons on the ministry of the Bishop, does not expressly mention charity as a specific sector of episcopal activity” (ibid.). Although “the Directory for the Pastoral Ministry of Bishops explored more specifically the duty of charity as a responsibility incumbent upon the whole Church and upon each Bishop in his Diocese” (ibid.), there was still a need to fill the aforementioned lacuna and to give adequate expression in canonical legislation to both the essential nature of the service of charity in the Church and its constitutive relationship with the episcopal ministry, while outlining the legal aspects of this ecclesial service, especially when carried out in an organized way and with the explicit support of the Bishops.

In view of this, with the present Motu Proprio I intend to provide an organic legislative framework for the better overall ordering of the various organized ecclesial forms of the service of charity, which are closely related to the diaconal nature of the Church and the episcopal ministry.

It is important, however, to keep in mind that “practical activity will always be insufficient, unless it visibly expresses a love for man, a love nourished by an encounter with Christ” (ibid., 34). In carrying out their charitable activity, therefore, the various Catholic organizations should not limit themselves merely to collecting and distributing funds, but should show special concern for individuals in need and exercise a valuable educational function within the Christian community, helping people to appreciate the importance of sharing, respect and love in the spirit of the Gospel of Christ. The Church’s charitable activity at all levels must avoid the risk of becoming just another form of organized social assistance (cf. ibid., 31).

The organized charitable initiatives promoted by the faithful in various places differ widely one from the other, and call for appropriate management. In a particular way, the work of Caritas has expanded at the parish, diocesan, national and international levels. Caritas is an institution promoted by the ecclesiastical Hierarchy which has rightly earned the esteem and trust of the faithful and of many other people around the world for its generous and consistent witness of faith and its concrete ability to respond to the needs of the poor. In addition to this broad initiative, officially supported by the Church’s authority, many other initiatives have arisen in different places from the free enterprise of the faithful, who themselves wish to help in various ways to offer a concrete witness of charity towards those in need. While differing in their origin and juridical status, both are expressions of sensitivity and a desire to respond to the same pressing need.

The Church as an institution is not extraneous to those organized initiatives which represent a free expression of the concern of the baptized for individuals and peoples in need. The Church’s Pastors should always welcome these initiatives as a sign of the sharing of all the faithful in the mission of the Church; they should respect the specific characteristics and administrative autonomy which these initiatives enjoy, in accordance with their nature, as a manifestation of the freedom of the baptized.

Alongside these, the Church’s authority has, on its own initiative, promoted specific agencies which provide institutionally for allocating donations made by the faithful, following suitable legal and administrative methods which allow for a more effective response to concrete needs.

Nevertheless, to the extent that such activities are promoted by the Hierarchy itself, or are explicitly supported by the authority of the Church’s Pastors, there is a need to ensure that they are managed in conformity with the demands of the Church’s teaching and the intentions of the faithful, and that they likewise respect the legitimate norms laid down by civil authorities. In view of these requirements, it became necessary to establish in the Church’s law certain essential norms inspired by the general criteria of canonical discipline, which would make explicit in this sector of activity the legal responsibilities assumed by the various subjects involved, specifying in particular the position of authority and coordination belonging to the diocesan Bishop. At the same time, the norms in question need to be broad enough to embrace the significant diversity of the institutions of Catholic inspiration which are engaged as such in this sector, whether those originating from the Hierarchy or those born of the direct initiative of the faithful, received and encouraged by the local Pastors. While it was necessary to lay down norms in this regard, there was also a need to consider the requirements of justice and the responsibility of Bishops before the faithful, with respect for the legitimate autonomy of each institution.
Dispositive Part

Consequently, upon the proposal of the Cardinal President of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, and after consultation with the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, I establish and decree the following…..

You may finish reading after the JUMP>>>HERE!


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