Sunday, September 16, 2012

Fidelity to the Church

A couple of years ago Pope Benedict said this about Church teaching:
If the Church's teaching is compromised, even slightly....then it becomes hard to defend the fullness of Catholic doctrine in an integral manner.... Pastors of the Church, therefore, must continually call the faithful to complete fidelity to the Church's magisterium while at the same time upholding and defending the Church's right to live freely in society according to her beliefs....

All too often the Church's doctrine is perceived as a series of prohibitions and retrograde positions, whereas the reality, as we know, is that it is creative and life-giving, and it is directed towards the fullest possible realization of the great potential for good and for happiness that God has implanted within every one of us. (Address to Scottish Bishops, Feb. 5, 2010)
 This week we will commemorate Saints who proclaimed and defended the teachings of the Church in its entirety. Tomorrow, the 17th is the feast of St. Robert Bellarmine (17th century Italy) who admirably explained the faith in midst of a Europe faced with the Protestant Reformation. He wrote a catechism and is the patron of catechists. Then we will commemorate our martyrs. Wednesday, the 19th, is the day for St. Januarius, also called Gennaro (4th cent. Italy). He was thrown to be mauled to death by bears because he would not compromise his fidelity to Christ. The next day is the feast of St. Andrew Kim Taegon, St. Paul Chong and their 101 companions (19th cent. Korea). They remained faithful through torture and death. Lastly, we have St. Matthew’s feast day on Friday, the 21st. He was a tax collector who was called by Our Lord to be one of the twelve Apostles. He is also, as we know, one of the four Evangelists. He wrote the first Gospel. He remained faithful through his martyrdom.
Blessed John Paul II talked about a "new springtime for Christianity" in this third millennium. When Pope Benedict was asked several years ago where is this new life for our faith, he replied that the number of faithful might well become smaller. But they would be authentic believers. From this core group of people, like those Saints mentioned above, the Church would blossom. Absent from this Church would be those who have their own agenda and those who want to mold it into their way of seeing things. The members of this Body will be one in faith.
Father Stanley

 "Who Is She That Stands Triumphant"
The Christendom College Choir and Schola Gregoriana

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