Anna Arco's Diary

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Posts Tagged ‘Pope

Called to a vocation of love and service

Pope Benedict on Valletta's waterfront (thanks to Attila Koncz for the photo )

At the Waterfront, in a ceremony that was similar to the boat-a-cade in Sydney for World Youth Day 2008, Pope Benedict was brought by boat through the harbour to meet the young people of Malta and Gozo. Bishop Mario Grech of Gozo spoke about the changing country, saying that Malta’s young people had questions to address to the Pope. Using the parable of the rich young man, Bishop Grech echoed his question “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

Some of the young people he said needed more support and encouragement than others because:

like the rich young man of the Gospel, some may have built a false sense of security in their rigid observance of the law and ritual norms and refuse a loving commitment to God and neighbour, even at a high personal cost. In such cases there is the hazard that belief turns into an empty religiosity, a matter of culture and tradition rather than a choice of life;

like the rich young man of the Gospel, compelled by the materialistic culture and the pressures of our modern economic system, some are finding it taxing to make choices which would guarantee them a treasure in Heaven;

like the rich young man, since human nature is proud and nourishes illusions of self-sufficiency and autonomy, some do not easily understand that they should allow God to infuse their life with His love by surrendering themselves to Him in complete trust and like St. Paul declare that the love of God compels them on.

A group of young people then addressed their questions and concerns to the Pope. I am going to put up the first one because I think it is worth reading in full: Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by annaarco

April 18, 2010 at 6:53 pm

At Easter, the faithful still flock to church…

Amidst the darkness of the sexual abuse scandal (which continued to escalate over the Triduum despite the Vatican moratorium on commenting during Holy Week) tens of thousands of pilgrims flocked to Rome to spend Easter in the Eternal City.

The pouring rain during Urbi et Orbi didn’t deter the faithful from coming to St Peter’s Square to receive the Papal blessing. According to the presenter on the Bayerische Rundfunk which was showing it live yesterday, there were far more pilgrims than expected in Rome this Easter.

Other places report a surge in people taking part in Triduum/Easter celebrations.

In Austria, the Stefansdom, the main Cathedral in Vienna saw a surge in Mass attendance ove Holy Week and Easter as well as did parishes in Vienna, despite a general decline in Mass attendance and growing numbers of active defections from the Church.

Anecdotal evidence seems to suggest that several London churches also saw larger numbers of faithful come for Holy Week celebrations and Easter than have in past years. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by annaarco

April 5, 2010 at 6:56 pm

The Pope and the Abuse scandal, a guide for perplexed Catholics

Many Catholics have been confused by the wave of reports which have linked the Pope to child-abuse. The Catholic Herald has prepared a narrative of the furore which has engulfed the Pope in the last couple of weeks. Here.

Written by annaarco

April 1, 2010 at 10:15 am

Be generous on Anglicanorum coetibus, Pope tells bishops

Vatican Radio reports the full text of Benedict XVI’s speech to the Bishops of England and Wales. He addressed Anglicanorum coetibus, asking the bishops to be generous in its implementation, and the Equalities Bill, praising Britain’s commitment to Equality and yet saying “the effect of some of the legislation designed to achieve this goal has been to impose unjust limitations on the freedom of religious communities to act in accordance with their beliefs”.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by annaarco

February 1, 2010 at 12:08 pm

Aging Baby-boomers and the Church

As the Church in Spain gears up for the World Youth Day extravaganza that takes place every three years and draws hundreds of thousands of youngsters the world over, the National Catholic Reporter‘s John Allen Jr urges the Church to pay attention to its greying population.

Quoting from the United Nations population division’s report “World Population Ageing 2009”, Mr Allen points out that the numbers of older people (60 and above) in the world will exceed the number of children (15 and under) by 2045. The elderly, he says, are the fastest growing demographic segment of the population (from both ends–longer lives and fewer babies) creating a completely new phenomenon in human history. The demographers have named this trend, Grayby-boom. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by annaarco

January 14, 2010 at 12:32 pm

Is Pope Benedict a secret rap lover? No.

The Daily Mail has an article entitled ““The Pontiff’s play list: Is the Pope a secret rap lover” which claims “If his playlist is any indication, the Pope has the most catholic of musical tastes”. Ho. Hum. Apparently the Holy Father listens to Tupac Shakur and Beyonce. Really?

Of course seven paragraphs later, we find out that in fact, this has nothing to do with poor Papa Benny, but rather with Fr Giulio Neroni, artistic director of St Paul’s Multimedia, the brain behind the recently released Alma Mater CD. The album spliced the Pope’s voice over other music–from the sounds of it rather a weird sort of thing–but in his latest wheeze, Fr Neroni has created a 12 song play list for the “Vatican” which includes Tupac and Shirley Bassey.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by annaarco

December 3, 2009 at 10:40 am

World AIDS Day

Pope Benedict XVI’s message for World AIDS day from ZENIT: ” My thought and my prayer go to all persons affected by this sickness, in particular children, to the poorest and to those who are rejected. The Church does not cease to combat AIDS, through her institutions and the personnel dedicated to it. I exhort everyone to make their own contribution with prayer and care, so that those who are affected by the HIV virus will feel the presence of the Lord who gives support and hope. Finally, I hope that, by multiplying and coordinating efforts, this sickness will be halted and eradicated.”

Written by annaarco

December 1, 2009 at 12:13 pm