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Day: January 10, 2015

Card. Gracias says extremism distorts sense of religion, God ?

‎“Once more, extremism distorts the sense of religion and uses God to motivate a terrible crime,” Indian ‎Cardinal Oswald Gracias said.  Expressing disgust over the Jan. 7 attack against the offices of French ‎weekly Charlie Hebdo, the Archbishop of Bombay said it “has no justification.   The prelate, who is ‎president of the Federation of Asian…
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Card. Gracias says extremism distorts sense of religion, God ?

‎“Once more, extremism distorts the sense of religion and uses God to motivate a terrible crime,” Indian ‎Cardinal Oswald Gracias said.  Expressing disgust over the Jan. 7 attack against the offices of French ‎weekly Charlie Hebdo, the Archbishop of Bombay said it “has no justification.   The prelate, who is ‎president of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences, said that he was “deeply saddened by the ‎terrible murderous attack in Paris, which threw the families of the victims and the whole of France in a ‎state of despair and mourning. The Church in India feels the pain of the French people and expresses ‎solidarity to the families who are now mourning their dead.”‎ 
Alluding to the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, Cardinal Gracias said, “we were the target of violent and dangerous religious ‎fundamentalism, which used God to justify violence.”  “Religious intolerance is contempt for human ‎beings and life, but also for the Lord. It threatens to destabilize society, communities and even nations. ‎The attack that took place in Paris is criminal and has in no way a justification”.  Despite this, he noted, ‎‎”we must always be sensitive to religious feelings, and remain on guard against the danger of prejudice ‎based on membership in a community of faithful. As religious leaders, it is our responsibility to proclaim ‎and make livelier the Gospel of peace, the path for dialogue”.‎  (Source: AsiaNews)
(from Vatican Radio)…

Pope to baptize 33 infants to commemorate Jesus’ Baptism

Pope Francis will observe a papal tradition on Sunday, the feast of the Baptism of Lord, baptizing 33 infants during a Mass amid the splendor of Michelangelo’s ‎frescos in the Vatican’s famed Sistine Chapel.  The 12 male and 21 females are children of Vatican ‎employees.   Pouring water over their heads, he will formally welcome the babies as members of the Catholic Church.  The commemoration of the Baptism of Jesus by St. John the Baptist in the River Jordan, marks the end of Christmas season in the liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church, and the start of Ordinary Time.    The Sistine Chapel is the venue where cardinals gather for a conclave to elect a new pope.  Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was elected Pope Francis there on March 13, 2013.  
(from Vatican Radio)…

Pope Francis: People Must Be at The Center of the Church’s Activity in Haiti

Pope Francis addressed the participants of a meeting convened by the Pontifical Council “Cor Unum” and the Pontifical Council for Latin America to mark the fifth anniversary of the earthquake that struck Haiti. Among those present were representatives of the Holy See, bishops and Episcopal conferences, as well as charitable and religious organizations.
The two day conference, entitled “The Communion of the Church: Memory and Hope for Haiti, 5 Years After the Earthquake” sought to place a spotlight on continuing reconstruction efforts on the island.
Listen to Junno Arocho’s report:

In his address, Pope Francis thanked the bishops of Haiti as well as the representatives of the charitable institutions who continue to aid the people of the island-nation.
“Through the help given to our brothers and sisters in Haiti, we have shown that the Church is a great body, one in which the various members care for one another. It is in this communion, prompted by the Holy Spirit, that our charitable service finds its deepest motivation.”
Turning his attention towards rebuilding efforts, the Pope explained that all that needs to be done “rests on three solid pillars: the human person, ecclesial communion, and the local Church.”
The person, he said, is at the centre of the Church’s activities, thus ensuring that material needs are met in order to help Haitians to “further their own spiritual and religious lives.”
“In this phase of reconstruction, humanitarian and pastoral activities are not in competition with one another, but rather are complementary,: each needs the other, and together they help Haitians to be mature persons and Christians capable of devoting themselves to the good of their brothers and sisters.”
Regarding the second pillar of ecclesial communion, the Holy Father reflected on the various dioceses, religious institutions and charitable organizations who continue to work in the country. However, he stressed that charity is more authentic and incisive when lived in communion.
“Charity is the inner life of the Church and is manifested in ecclesial communion. Communion between bishops and with bishops, who are the first ones responsible for the service of charity.”
Finally, Pope Francis highlighted the importance of the local Church, encouraging the bishops, priests and religious of Haiti to become witnesses of evangelical charity through prayer, listening to the word of God and receiving the Sacraments.
“The Church in Haiti must become always more alive and fruitful, to witness to Christ and to make its contribution to the development of the nation.”
Concluding his address, the Pope expressed his gratitude to those present and urged them to continue along the path of healing and rebuilding Haiti.
(from Vatican Radio)…

The Pope on the 5th anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti – Three solid pillars

The material and spiritual reconstruction of Haiti — devastated five years ago by an
earthquake — must rely on “three solid
pillars: the human person, ecclesial communion, and the local Church”. Pope
Francis recalled this on Saturday morning, 10 January, during an audience to
participants in a meeting organized in Rome by by the Pontifical Council Cor
Unum and the Pontifical Commission for Latin America on the anniversary of the
natural disaster. “Much has been done toward rebuilding the country in these
five years” the Pontiff said, while acknowledging that “much remains to be
done”. His wish is that “the Church in Haiti must become always more alive and
fruitful, to witness to Christ and to make its contribution to the development
of the nation”….