Friday, July 5, 2013
DOUBLE BOMBSHELLS, HERMENEUTIC OF CONTINUITY BETWEEN BENEDICT AND FRANCIS, JOINT ENCYLICAL ON FAITH, JOINT EXORCISM OF THE DEVIL FROM THE VATICAN!
Yes, Pope Francis believes in the devil and has preached about him more that any other recent pope or bishop since Vatican II. Today he asked Pope Emeritus Benedict to join him in the Vatican Gardens in consecrating the Vatican to Saint Michael the Archangel, who defends us in battle against the devil who prowls the world and even the Vatican for the ruin of souls! And to have two popes present for such an unprecedented event is, well, unprecedented.
Following this brief ceremony, Pope Francis addressed those present noting how St. Michael defends the People of God from its enemy par excellence, the devil. He said even if the devil attempts to disfigure the face of the Archangel and thus the face of humanity, St Michael wins, because God acts in him and is stronger.
Pope Francis also entrusted the Vatican to the protection of St. Joseph, praying that he will strengthen and safeguard all who work within the City State.
And then the Encyclical on Faith is being released jointed by the two popes, with Pope Emeritus Benedict the primary author. It doesn't get any better than this folks.
Here are summaries of the encyclical:
BUT FIRST READ WHAT CARDINAL OUELETTE HAS TO SAY ABOUT THE TWO POPES ENCYCLICAL HERE.
READ WHAT ARCHBISHOP MUELLER HAS TO SAY ABOUT THE TWO POPES' ENCYCLICAL HERE.
READ POINTS TO PONDER FROM THE LIGHT OF FAITH OF THE TWO POPES HERE.
HERE IS VATICAN RADIO'S SUMMARY OF THE TWO POPES' ENCYCLICAL, THE LIGHT OF FAITH:(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis’ first encyclical entitled "Lumen fidei" or “The Light of Faith” was released Friday at a press conference in the Vatican. The document completes the trilogy of papal teachings on the three theological virtues, begun by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI who issued his encyclicals "Deus Caritas Est" on Charity in 2005 and "Spe Salvi" on Hope in 2007.
Sean Patrick Lovett reports:
Announcing the forthcoming publication of his first encyclical, Pope Francis described it as a work of “four hands”, begun by his predecessor, Benedict XVI, who passed on his draft for the new pope to complete. The document certainly continues many of Benedict’s favourite themes, from the complementarity of faith and reason, to the joy of a personal encounter with Christ. Firmly situated in the Year of Faith, it’s also set in the context of the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council, which re-established the central role of Faith at the heart of all human relationships.
Divided into four chapters and a short introduction, the encyclical sets out to show how Faith in the Risen Christ can lead us beyond the narrow confines of individual existence into the all-inclusive community of God’s love. Rather than the notion of ‘blind faith’, which impedes scientific progress and must be kept to the private sphere of personal convictions, we’re called to rediscover the light that can guide all people from the darkness of selfish desires towards a more just and fraternal world, grounded in the faithful promises of God the Creator.
The first chapter takes the reader on a whirlwind tour of the Old and New Testaments, from Abraham, who first hears God’s call, through the Israelites travelling towards the light of the Promised Land, to Jesus’ death on the Cross, the ultimate act of God’s love for humanity. The more we are touched by the transforming power of that love, writes the Pope, the better we are able to understand our relationship to all our brothers and sisters in Christ.
Chapter two insists on the essential link between Faith and Truth, without which our beliefs seem nothing more than a fairy story, an illusion of happiness, unable to sustain us when the going gets tough. Contemporary society, the encyclical says, tends to see technological progress and individual pleasure as the only objective truth, viewing any broader questions about the origins of our existence with deep suspicion. Without love in our hearts, truth becomes cold, impersonal, oppressive, unable to transform the lives of others. But by listening, seeing and believing in Christ’s presence in our lives today, we can broaden our horizons and find better ways of serving the common good. The light of our faith in Christ can also contribute to a more fruitful dialogue with non-Christians and non-believers, showing how all those who search for God or seek for truth will be welcomed and illuminated by that light.
The third chapter of the encyclical centres on the Church as the place where the light of faith is safeguarded and transmitted from one generation to the next. Through the sacraments of Baptism and Eucharist, through profession of the Creed, praying the Our Father and obeying the Ten Commandments, the Church teaches the language of faith and draws us into the Trinitarian relationship of love, so that ‘whoever believes is never alone’.
The final chapter focuses on Faith and the common good and shows how the light of faith can promote peace and reconciliation, and teach respect for God’s creation. The encyclical also considers those areas illuminated by Faith, starting with the family based on marriage, understood as a stable union between man and woman. Faith, writes the Pope, cannot eliminate suffering in our world, but it can accompany us and bring a new sense of hope in God’s love. The encyclical ends with a prayer to Mary, Mother of Jesus and icon of faith, who can lead us into the light of God’s love.
READ THE FULL TEXT OF THE TWO POPES' ENCYCLICAL AT THE VATICAN WEBSITE BY PRESSING HERE!