Let us pray for our World, Country, and Church Leaders!
Pope Francis Quotes:
Pope’s quotes: Respect the environment; by NCR Staff
“Religions have a very important role in this task of promoting care and respect for the environment. Faith in God leads us to recognise Him in His creation, which is the fruit of His love for us, and which requires us to care for and protect nature. For this reason, it is necessary for religions to promote genuine education, at all levels, that helps to disseminate a responsible and careful attitude towards the demands of care for our world, and in a special way, to protect, promote and defend human rights. … Interfaith cooperation, based on the promotion of sincere and respectful dialogue, is fundamental … and must be based on one’s own identity and the mutual trust that arises when we are capable of recognising the other as a gift of God, and accepting that he or she has something to tell us. … The believer is a defender of creation and life, and cannot remain silent or passive in the face of so many rights disregarded with impunity. Men and women of faith are called to defend life in all its stages: physical integrity and fundamental freedoms such as freedom of conscience, of thought, of expression and of worship.”
— Symposium of the Organisation of American States and the Buenos Aires Institute for Interreligious Dialogue, Sept. 8, 2016
Bishops must be blameless servants, not princes, pope says, by Carol Glatz by Catholic News Service
Vatican City — A bishop must be “blameless” and at the service of God, not of cliques, assets and power, especially if he is ever to “set right” what needs to be done for the church, Pope Francis said.
A bishop must always “correct himself and ask himself, ‘Am I a steward of God or a businessman?'” the pope said in his homily during Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae Nov. 12, the feast of St. Josaphat, 17th-century bishop and martyr.
The pope’s homily looked at the day’s first reading from St. Paul’s Letter to Titus (1:1-9) describing the qualities and role of a bishop.
The apostle underlines how a bishop must be a steward or “administrator of God, not of assets, power and cliques,” the pope said.
Most of all, he said, a bishop must be “blameless,” the same quality God asked of Abraham when he said, “walk in my presence and be blameless.” It is a quality that is the cornerstone of every leader, he added.
According to the apostle, a bishop must not be licentious, rebellious, arrogant, irritable, a drunkard, greedy or obsessed with money. A bishop with even just one of these defects, the pope said, is “a calamity for the church.”
A bishop must be hospitable, temperate, just and holy; he must have self-control, love the good and be faithful to the Word, to the true message as it was taught, the apostle says.
If this is what a bishop should be, the pope said, then “would it be wonderful to ask these questions at the beginning, when inquiries are made to elect bishops? To know whether one may keep going with other inquiries?”
Above all, the pope said, a bishop “must be humble, meek and a servant, not a prince.”
This is “the word of God” that comes from the time of St. Paul and isn’t something recent from the Second Vatican Council, the pope added.
The church can only “set right” what needs corrected when it has bishops who have these qualities, he said.
What matters to God, he said, is a bishop’s humility and his service, not how nice he is or how well he preaches.
Eucharist creates the communion the world needs, pope says, by Cindy Wooden by Catholic News Service
Vatican City — Even in societies increasingly marked by divisions and prejudice, Catholics gather every Sunday “in the Lord’s name and acknowledge that they are brothers and sisters,” Pope Francis said.
The communion with Jesus and with others that happens at each celebration of the Eucharist must extend beyond the walls of the church and transform societies with the good news of salvation in Jesus and greater harmony among people, the pope said Nov. 10 at a meeting with members of the Pontifical Committee for International Eucharistic Congresses.
The committee is preparing the next International Eucharistic Congress to be held in Budapest, Hungary, in 2020.
Pope Francis said the choice of the Central European city “raises a fundamental question: What does it mean to celebrate a eucharistic congress in the modern and multicultural city where the Gospel and the forms of religious affiliation have become marginal?”
The response, he said, must be to find ways to foster a “eucharistic culture” that is “grounded in the sacrament yet perceptible also beyond the limits of the church community.”
At every Mass, he said: “The miracle is repeated: In the hearing of the word and in the sign of the broken bread, even the smallest and lowliest assembly of believers becomes the body of the Lord, his tabernacle in the world.”
To form a “eucharistic culture,” he said, each Catholic must experience communion with Jesus, regularly encountering him in prayer and following him into the world.
Eucharistic adoration, a key feature of eucharistic congresses, contributes to creating that culture by teaching Catholics not to separate “our sacramental communion with him from our communion with his members and from the missionary commitment that follows from this.”
Communion with Jesus should then lead to an attitude of service in imitation of him, the pope said. “Christians serve the cause of the Gospel by being present in places of frailty, under the shadow of the cross, in order to share and to bring healing.”
Within Catholic communities and in society at large, many situations cry out for the “balm of mercy,” the pope said. “We think of families in difficulty, young people and adults without work, the sick and the elderly who are abandoned, migrants experiencing hardship and acts of violence, and so many other forms of poverty.”
In all situations of need and suffering, he said, Catholics can “spread the seeds of a eucharistic culture by becoming servants of the poor, not in the name of an ideology but of the Gospel itself, which becomes a rule of life for individuals and communities.”
Every celebration of the Eucharist reminds the community of Gospel values and concepts that can help make cities and nations more livable, the pope said.
“We need think only of the word mercy,” he said. In societies where there reign “different kinds of fear, oppression, arrogance, cruelty, hatred, forms of rejection and lack of concern for the environment,” the celebration of the Eucharist proclaims that God’s mercy is stronger than all of them.
The celebration of a eucharistic congress, he said, is a reminder to Catholics that “the Eucharist stands at the very heart of the church’s life. It is a paschal mystery that can enhance the baptized as individuals, but also the earthly city in which they live and work.”
Text from National Catholic Reporter.