feb 112013
 

13febr_p_benedikt

Forrige uke møtte pave Benedikt seminaristene i Roma, og vi kan lese om det på www.chiesa:

As in other years at the feast of Our Lady of Confidence, this time as well Benedict XVI went to the major Roman seminary to hold for the aspiring priests a “lectio divina.”

Pope Joseph Ratzinger spoke off the cuff, with just a page of notes in front of him, in addition to the biblical text he had chosen.

And when he speaks off the cuff, he unveils his thoughts in the most transparent and clear manner, as demonstrated by the literal transcription of his words, usually released one or two days later, revised and authorized by the author. …

Om arven vi har fått overlevert sa paven følgende:

… “Inheritance is a very important word in the Old Testament, where it is said to Abraham that his seed will be the heir of the land, and this has always been the promise for his people: you will have the land, you will be heirs of the land. In the New Testament this word becomes a word for us: we are heirs, not of a certain country, but of the land of God, of the future of God. Inheritance is a thing of the future, and thus this word says above all that as Christians we have the future: the future is ours, the future belongs to God. And thus, being Christians, we know that ours is the future and the tree of the Church is not a dying tree, but the tree that grows ever anew. We therefore have a reason not to allow ourselves to be disturbed – as Pope John said – by the prophets of disaster who say: the Church is a tree come from the mustard seed, grown over two millennia, now it has time behind it, now is the time in which it is dying. No. The Church is always renewed, is always reborn. The future is ours.

“Naturally, there is a false optimism and a false pessimism. A false pessimism that says: the time of Christianity is finished. No: it is beginning again! The false optimism was that after the Council, when the convents were closing, the seminaries were closing, and they were saying: but it’s nothing, everything’s fine . . . No! Everything is not fine. There are also grave, dangerous downfalls, and we must recognize with healthy realism that this is not all right, it is not all right when wrongful things are done. But also to be sure, at the same time, that if here and there the Church is dying because of the sins of men, because of their unbelief, at the same time it is being born anew. The future really does belong to God: this is the great certainty of our life, the great, true optimism that we know. The Church is the tree of God that lives forever and bears within itself eternity and the true inheritance: eternal life.”

feb 102013
 

I dagens messer hørte vi om profeten Jesajas og apostelen Peters kall (se alle tekstene her):

(Jesaja så serafer som) ropte til hverandre: «Hellig, hellig, hellig er Herren, Hærskarenes Gud. All jorden er full av hans herlighet.» Boltene ristet i dørtersklene når ropet runget, og huset ble fylt med røk. … (og) en av serafene bort til meg. I hånden hadde han en glo, som han hadde tatt med en tang fra alteret. Med den rørte han ved min munn og sa: «Se, denne har rørt ved dine lepper. Din skyld er tatt bort, din synd er sonet.» Så hørte jeg Herrens røst: «Hvem skal jeg sende, og hvem vil gå for oss?» Da sa jeg: «Se, her er jeg. Send meg!»

Da Simon Peter så (den store fiskefangsten), falt han på kne for Jesus og sa: «Gå vekk fra meg, Herre, synder som jeg er!» For både han og alle som hadde vært med, var blitt redselsslagne over fangsten de hadde fått, – Sebedeus-sønnene Jakob og Johannes også, som var i lag med Simon. Men Jesus sa til Simon: «Frykt ikke! Fra nå av skal du fange mennesker.» Så rodde de båtene i land, forlot alt og fulgte ham.

Over disse tekstene holdt pave Benedikt en kort tale før søndagens Angelus;

Dear brothers and sisters! In today’s liturgy the Gospel according to Luke presents the account of the calling of the first disciples. This version is original with respect to the other two synoptic Gospels, Matthew and Mark (Matthew 4:18-22; Mark 1:16-20). The call, in fact, is preceded by Jesus’ teaching of the crowds and of a miraculous catch of fish, accomplished by the Lord’s will (Luke 5:1-6).

While the crowd gathers on the shore of the Lake of Genesaret to listen to Jesus he sees Simon who is discouraged because he had not caught anything all night. First he asks Simon if he might get into the boat to preach to the people a little ways from the shore; then when he finishes preaching he commands him to set out into the lake with his companions and cast out the nets (5:5). Simon obeys and they catch a great quantity of fish. In this way the evangelist makes us see how the first disciples followed Jesus, entrusting themselves to him, basing themselves on his word, which is also accompanied by wondrous signs.

Let us observe that before this sign, Simon speaks to Jesus calling him “Master” (5:5), while afterward he calls him “Lord” (5:7). It is the pedagogy of God’s call, which is not much concerned with the qualities of the elect but with their faith, like that of Simon, who says: “At your word I will cast out the nets” (5:5). The image of the catch of fish points to the mission of the Church. St. Augustine comments on this: “Twice the disciples fish at the Lord’s command: once before the passions and once after the resurrection. In both cases we find a figure of the whole Church: the Church as she is now and as she will be after the resurrection of the dead. Now she contains a multitude impossible to count, including the good and the bad together; after the resurrection she will only contain the good” (Sermon 248, 1).

Peter’s experience, certainly singular, is also representative of the call of every apostle of the Gospel, who must never be discouraged in proclaiming Christ to all men, to the ends of the earth. But the text of today’s Gospel also brings us to reflect on the vocation to the priesthood and the consecrated. It is the work of God. Man is not the author of his own vocation, but he replies to the divine proposal; and human weakness must not trouble us if God calls. We must have confidence in his strength, which acts precisely in our poverty; we must more and more place our trust in the power of his mercy, which transforms and renews. Dear brothers and sisters, may this Word of God revive in us too and in our Christian communities the courage, the confidence and the zeal to proclaim and witness to the Gospel. Failures and difficulties must not lead to discouragement: we are expected to cast out the nets with faith, the Lord does the rest. Let us trust in the intercession of the Virgin Mary, Queen of the Apostles. Quite aware of her littleness, she responds to the Lord’s call with total trust: “Here I am.” With her maternal aid let us renew our openness to follow Jesus, Master and Lord.

feb 102013
 

“Ban Contraception?” the banner ad said, urging viewers to click it in order to tell Congress to “support women’s health!” The suggestion that cultural conservatives want to make birth control illegal is risible. Most social conservatives, being Evangelicals, have zero problem with contraception whatsoever, and those Catholics who obey the Church’s teaching on contraception make zero effort to outlaw it.

But here we are. The HHS mandate requiring health insurance plans to cover not only contraception proper but also abortifacients and sterilization procedures abides. …

Det dreier seg igjen om at myndighetene i USA vil tvinge arbeidsgivere til å gi sine ansatte en sykeforsikring som dekker utgifter til prevensjon, sterilisering og abort. Av disse tre er prevensjon nokså problematisk (at det skal være et problem) for protestanter (og også en del katolikker), men hos FirstThings leser vi (over og under) om hvor viktig dette er for hele samfunnet:

… In Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI dealt not so much with issues of particularly Catholic morality but with the profound issues of the human person and human culture, arguing—indeed, prophesying, as it turns out—that contraception would lead to a “general lowering of morality” and the treatment of women as “mere instruments of selfish enjoyment.” He warned, too, of “the danger of this power passing into the hands of those public authorities who care little for the precepts of the moral law” who “may even impose their use on everyone.” When dealing with sexuality, we are not merely in the realm of religion but the realm of reason. These are not matters of religious scruples, but matters of public concern concerning the common good.

Thus, when Michael Gerson writes, “It is a valid public health goal to promote the broad availability of contraception” so long as it doesn’t trample fundamental rights, the faithful Catholic must object. For the widespread availability of contraception involves risks to women and consequences for society even beyond those envisioned by the prophetic Pope Paul VI. …

feb 092013
 

NARAL Pro-Choice America, is an organization in the United States that engages in political action to oppose restrictions on abortion and expand access to abortion. NARAL is often used as a short form of the name. The organization was formerly known as the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws, then the National Abortion Rights Action League, and later the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League.

Jeg leste nylig en ganske sjokkerende nyhet (egentlig) om president Obama, som er veldig stolt av denne organisasjonen som har sørget for at millioner av barn i USA er blitt aborterte:

Obama tells NARAL activists to ‘celebrate’ Roe, says ‘I couldn’t be prouder’ of them

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 7, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – President Barack Obama addressed abortion activists at NARAL Pro-Choice America’s annual dinner on Tuesday, saying in his videotaped remarks that he was joining them to “celebrate the historic Roe v. Wade decision handed down 40 years ago.”

“To everyone at NARAL Pro-Choice America, thank you for your tireless advocacy,” Obama said. “I couldn’t be prouder of the work each of you is doing.”

Supporters of the powerful abortion lobby paid between $3,000 and $25,000 per table to attend the event.

In his video address, Obama praised the group’s outgoing president, Nancy Keenan, calling her a “friend and counselor to me and my administration.”

He welcomed her successor, Ilyse Hogue, who in a video released this week by NARAL called legalized abortion “foundational to every other thing we want to achieve for ourselves, our families, and our country.”

Hogue attacked the conservative TEA (Taxed Enough Already) Party movement in that same video, saying “The rise of the TEA Party has surfaced a real desire on the part of a few to ramp up restrictions on women’s freedom and to do what I call ‘stuff the genie back in the bottle.’”

As one of her first actions as NARAL president, Hogue last week praised the Obama administration’s controversial HHS mandate, saying it “affirms yet again the Obama administration’s commitment to fulfilling the full promise of its historic contraception policy.”

Da jeg leste om NARAL på Wikipedia, dukket også Bernard Nathansons navn opp. Han var svært aktiv i NARAL i starten, før han forstod at abort var galt/ en alvorlig synd – og flere år senere også ble døpt inn i Den katolske Kirke.

feb 082013
 

Jeg leste i går hos Catholic World Report en ganske dristig formulert betraktning over av Vatikankonsilets siste dokument: Gaudium et Spes. I 1965 var mange svært optimistiske, overdrevet optimistiske syns vi nok i dag, og dokumentet bærer preg av dette – samtidig som dokumentet også justerer/balanserer denne optimismen enkelte steder, og framfor alt må tolkes på en balansert måte. Her er utdrag fra artikkelen:

It is easy to be critical of Gaudium et Spes as a document pushed through at the end of the Second Vatican Council when the Holy Spirit was out to lunch or the Conciliar fathers had eaten rather too much lunch and were not fully awake. As one of my students once remarked, “Were they all on Prozac?”

In 1965, however, people didn’t need to take Prozac. There was a general optimism about the world. Medical advances were made every day, material standards of living were the highest they had ever been, …

…. As a consequence of this generally optimistic mood, there are sections of the document which do sound as though they have been written by people who have forgotten about evil, sin, and atheistic ideologies. The young Joseph Ratzinger, writing in 1969, described some of the document’s sections as “downright Pelagian” in tone.

However, there are other sections that are highly sober.

It is no surprise, therefore, that there ended up being two dominant interpretations of this document. In shorthand terms one can call them the Wojtyła interpretation and the Schillebeeckx interpretation. The Wojtyła interpretation zeroed in on paragraph 22, according to which human persons only understand themselves to the extent that they know Christ. According to Blessed John Paul II—the former Bishop Karol Wojtyła—Christ is the answer to all the legitimate hopes and desires of persons of good will throughout the world. He read Gaudium et Spes with a Christocentric accent. However, as Ratzinger noted, the “daring new” Christocentric anthropology embedded within the document was not well expressed. There is a tension between the first section, where the human person is merely “theistically hued” or in some general way made in God’s image, and the second section, which is specifically Trinitarian.

The Schillebeeckx interpretation zeroed in on paragraph 36, which recognized a “legitimate autonomy of the world”:

If by the autonomy of earthly affairs we mean that created things and societies themselves enjoy their own laws and values which must gradually be deciphered, put to use, and regulated by men, then it is entirely right to demand that autonomy. Such is not merely required by modern men, but harmonizes also with the will of the Creator. For by the very circumstances of their having been created, all things are endowed with their own stability, truth, goodness, proper laws, and order.

On its face this sounded like the ecclesial leaders were “bowing out” from any involvement in world affairs. According to a superficial reading of this paragraph, taken out of its context with other qualifying paragraphs, the world did not need Christian revelation. …

feb 082013
 

gay_marriage Tidligere denne uka åpnet parliamentet i London for “homofile” ekteskap. Engelske katolikker har reagert ganske kraftig på dette, bl.a. i denne artikkelen: Same-sex marriage will put Catholics under ‘intolerable moral pressures’.
Den amerikanske katolske presten, Fr. Longenecker, (som tidligere bodde i England i mange år) skriver ganske krasst om dette på sin blogg:

Today the UK Parliament took the first legal steps to sanction same sex marriage. The implications of their re-definition of marriage are very ominous indeed, and the ignorant arrogance of their lawmakers is breath taking.

Think about it for a moment. Nowhere, not in any time or any place, not in any culture or civilization from the most primitive jungle dwelling tribe to the most sophisticated society has marriage between two people of the same gender ever been contemplated. Some societies have accepted homosexuality or been lenient toward such practices, but no one has ever suggested that marriage could ever be between two men or between two women.

The idea that British lawmakers can take it upon themselves to change such a fundamental understanding of what it means to be human is simply incredible. I realize that they believe they are simply voting on an “equality issue”. This is not so. They have voted on a historic and fundamentally different definition of marriage. They have not voted to open marriage up. They have voted to destroy marriage.

Already “marriage” in our society is practically meaningless. Easy no fault divorce and multiple marriages, weddings that take place most anywhere with people writing their own ‘vows’ with their own ‘ministers’. The whole thing is a charade–a grotesque and hideous mockery of marriage, and the result will be that marriage will be meaningless. Weddings will be nothing but a sentimental display of self indulgence and the marriage itself will be a sham.

Same sex marriage actually destroys marriage, for in re-defining what marriage is, it is no longer marriage. It is something else. Furthermore, the erosion of marriage into meaningless sentimental clap trap or some sort of politically correct statement is not only the fault of the gay militants. It is also the fault of those people who break their marriage vows, divorce and then re-marry. …

feb 072013
 

The Catholic World Report sier følgende om Portlands nye erkebiskops syn på liturgisk musikk – mest om at selve messen skal synges (inngangsvers etc.), heller enn at man synger mer eller mindre passende hymnes/sanger i messen:

CWR: The Archdiocese of Portland is home to Oregon Catholic Press, which produces missals and liturgical music materials used by two-thirds of our country’s Catholic churches. You have developed an interest in the liturgy—in fact, you’re writing a pastoral letter on the topic. Can you share with us some highlights of that letter?

Sample: Yes. It is on pastoral music, and is just being released. We just hired a new director of sacred music, and this will be his road map. It will be my last contribution to the life of the Church in Marquette.

In this letter I discuss the liturgical movement of the Church, what Vatican II said about liturgical music, documents released on the topic after Vatican II, as well as writings by popes about [liturgical music]. It is not my vision or my ideas; I try to present the Church’s vision.

It is clear that the Council calls for the liturgy to be sung. In recent decades we’ve adopted the practice of singing songs at Mass. We take the Mass, and attach four hymns or songs to it. But this is not the Church’s vision. We need to sing the Mass. It is meant to be sung. The texts of the Mass are meant to be sung.

The Church provides us with chant, which is integral to liturgy, and should inspire the music of the Mass. We need to get away from singing songs at Mass and return to singing the Mass. And Gregorian chant is best suited to the Mass. The new director I hired [in the Diocese of Marquette] will introduce chant. It will be a huge shift for the people.

I mean no criticism of our sacred musicians, who are very dedicated. It will be a shift for them as well.

And, in addition to Latin chant, we also need to introduce chant in English. Although the Second Vatican Council said that chant should be given “pride of place,” one rarely hears it in parishes. Music is an important part of celebrating the Mass. As Pope Benedict has said, if we get the music right, we’ll get the spirit of the Mass right.

feb 072013
 

… The challenge can be defined simply: Throughout the Western world, the culture no longer carries the faith, because the culture has become increasingly hostile to the faith. Catholicism can no longer be absorbed by osmosis from the environment, for the environment has become toxic. So we can no longer sit back and assume that decent lives lived in conformity with the prevailing cultural norms will somehow convey the faith to our children and grandchildren and invite others to consider entering the Church.

No, in our new situation, Catholicism has to be proposed, and Catholicism has to be lived in radical fidelity to Christ and the Gospel. Recreational Catholicism—Catholicism as a traditional, leisure-time activity absorbing perhaps ninety minutes of one’s time on a weekend—is over. Full-time Catholicism—a Catholicism that, as the Second Vatican Council taught, infuses all of life and calls everyone in the Church to holiness and mission—is the only possible Catholicism in the twenty-first century. …

Slik skriver George Weigel på First Things nettsider, som en introduksjon til en bok han nå gir ut: Evangelical Catholicism: Deep Reform in the 21st-Century Church. Han sier at etter å ha studert Den katolske kirke svært aktivt i 30 år – over hele verden, fra paver til biskoper, nonner og vanlig katolikker – er dette hans bestemte mening; et Kristus-sentrert liv blant de troende, med en sterk tro, der hele livet er overgitt til Gud, er nødvendig for at troen og Kirken skal kunne overleve og vokse.

Hans nye bok finner man her på Amazon.co.uk og der beskrives den slik:

The Catholic Church is on the threshold of a bold new era in its two-thousand year history. As the curtain comes down on the Church defined by the 16th-century Counter-Reformation, the curtain is rising on the Evangelical Catholicism of the third millennium: a way of being Catholic that comes from over a century of Catholic reform; a mission-centered renewal honed by the Second Vatican Council and given compelling expression by Blessed John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI.

The Gospel-centered Evangelical Catholicism of the future will send all the people of the Church into mission territory every day–a territory increasingly defined in the West by spiritual boredom and aggressive secularism. Confronting both these cultural challenges and the shadows cast by recent Catholic history, Evangelical Catholicism unapologetically proclaims the Gospel of Jesus Christ as the truth of the world. It also molds disciples who witness to faith, hope, and love by the quality of their lives and the nobility of their aspirations. Thus the Catholicism of the 21st-century and beyond will be a culture-forming counterculture, offering all men and women of good will a deeply humane alternative to the soul-stifling self-absorption of postmodernity.

Drawing on thirty years of experience throughout the Catholic world, from its humblest parishes to its highest levels of authority, George Weigel proposes a deepening of faith-based and mission-driven Catholic reform that touches every facet of Catholic life–from the episcopate and the papacy to the priesthood and the consecrated life; from the renewal of the lay vocation in the world to the redefinition of the Church’s engagement with public life; from the liturgy to the Church’s intellectual life. Lay Catholics and clergy alike should welcome the challenge of this unique moment in the Church’s history, Weigel urges. Mediocrity is not an option, and all Catholics, no matter what their station in life, are called to live the evangelical vocation into which they were baptized: without compromise, but with the joy, courage, and confidence that comes from living this side of the Resurrection.

13feb_weigel_ev_cath

feb 062013
 

Avisa Dagen meldte i går at Nina Karin Monsen er blitt opptatt i Kirkens fulle fellesskap, 2. februar 2013 i St Paul kirke i Bergen.

I 2009 fikk Nina Karin Monsen Fritt Ord-prisen for sin uredde stemme i offentligheten. Hun ble kjent som Norges skarpeste stemme mot det kjønnsnøytrale ekteskapet.

Men i ti år har hun lengtet etter et åndelig hjem, etter noen som kunne bære henne i striden. Nå har hun funnet husrom i St. Paul kirke i Bergen, og i likhet med kulturpersonligheter som Jahn Otto Johansen, Arne Berggren og Gerhard Helskog, har hun blitt katolikk. … …

Monsen vil nå arbeide for enhet mellom kirkene og fant det helt naturlig å velge det hun kaller moderkirken.

– Jeg skulle ønske det ikke var som mange kirker og menigheter av forskjellig slag. Den katolske kirke gir en høytid, i gamle dager da de styrte var det slik at alt det alle gjorde skulle gjøres for å ære Gud. Kirkene skulle være vakre og skjønne for å ære Gud. For meg er det helt naturlig å gå inn, sier hun. … …

– Hvordan tror du folk kommer til å reagere på at du har blitt katolikk?

– Nei, det er jeg litt spent på. Det er nok noen som reagerer negativt, jeg har fremdeles hørt noen si at paven er satan. Kristne er alt for flinke til å fordømme hverandre. Hvis jeg kan virke til noe med dette gjør jeg gjerne det. Kristen enhet er viktig. Jeg skal fortsette å slåss mot barnemarkedet og ekteskapet.

– Opplever du at du får større tyngde nå?

– Som filosof er jeg nå kommet inn i selskapet til kirkefedrene. De som har laget hele filosofihistorien eller åndshistorien var medlem i Den katolske kirke. Det passer jo veldig godt for meg.

Avisa har skrevet flere artikler om dette (se her), og i dag skriver de om flere menneskers reaksjoner. Bl.a. dette:

Pensjonert professor i europeisk kulturhistorie ved Menighetsfakultetet, Bernt T. Oftestad, har selv konvertert til katolisismen. Han mener det er flere grunner til at Den romersk-katolske kirke har appellert til intellektuelle. En av dem er at denne kirken i moderne tid har gått inn i filosofiske problemstillinger på en mer engasjert og selvstendig måte enn de protestantiske har gjort.

I våre dager mener Oftestad dette særlig kommer til uttrykk ved at kirken går i front mot «alle former for menneskefiendtlig modernisme». Han nevner abort og surrogati som to eksempler. Samtidig understreker han at en konversjon først og fremst er en religiøs prosess.

– Men det kan virke som om noen er tiltrukket av katolisismens tydelighet mens andre har sans for dens åpenhet?

– Den dobbeltheten er for så vidt interessant. Katolisismen er både romslig og fast på en gang. Den har en måte å fungere på som gjør at den har sin lære og sin kirkerett, samtidig er den engasjert av omsorgen for sjelene uten å oppgi idealene, sier Oftestad.

For noen norske konvertitter tror han valget har handlet om et oppbrudd fra pietistisk puritanisme, men han påpeker at katolisismen også har fromhetsretninger med mange av de samme idealene.

– Folks bakgrunnsmiljø spiller en veldig stor rolle. Men det er ikke slik at ved å bli katolikk, blir alt mye mer lettvint, sier Oftestad.

feb 062013
 

I USA har det vært samtaler mellom Den katolske Kirke og flere Reformerte kirker. Nylig leste jeg (på de amerikanske katolske biskopenes nettsider) om den gledelige enigheten de er kommet til mht dåpen. Men legg merke til (under) at det er et absolutt krav at man blir døpt i “Faderens og Sønnens og Den Hellige Ånds navn”, og på det punktet holder nå enkelte protestantiske kirkesamfunn (de mest radikale, moderne) på å få en ny kjønnsnøytral praksis – det har vært noen ganske små tendenser til det også i Norge. Og er ikke det tradisjonelle dåpsformularet brukt, er man faktisk ikke døpt – så alvorlig ser Den katolske Kirke på det. Her er innledningen til fellesdokumentet:

Together we affirm that, by the sacrament of Baptism, a person is truly incorporated into the body of Christ (I Corinthians 12:13 and 27; Ephesians 1:22-23), the church. Baptism establishes the bond of unity existing among all who are part of Christ’s body and is therefore the sacramental basis for our efforts to move towards visible unity.

Together we affirm that Baptism is the sacramental gateway into the Christian life, directed toward the fullness of faith and discipleship in Christ.

Together we affirm that incorporation into the universal church by baptism is brought about by celebrating the sacrament within a particular Christian community.

Together we affirm that Baptism is to be conferred only once, because those who are baptized are decisively incorporated into the Body of Christ.

Together we affirm that baptism is a sacrament of the church, enacted in obedience to the mission confided to it by Christ’s own word. For our baptisms to be mutually recognized, water and the scriptural Trinitarian formula “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28: 19-20) must be used in the baptismal rite.

Together we affirm that the validity of Baptism depends on its celebration according to the apostolic witness by the church and its authorized ministers. …..

Her kan vi lese mer om avtalen – bl.a. at den er et resultat av 7 års arbeid.

feb 062013
 

In 1976, Joseph Ratzinger—then still a professor—suggested “it might be possible to interpret [the Augsburg Confession (CA)—i.e., the primary Lutheran confession] under the laws of the empire as a catholic confession.” He continued: “Efforts are underway to achieve a Catholic recognition of the CA or, more correctly, a recognition of the CA as catholic, and thereby to establish the catholicity of the churches of the CA, which makes possible a corporate union while the differences remain.”

While Ratzinger—now Benedict XVI— would not continue a campaign for such acceptance, it is nevertheless a striking comment from the man who would be pope. At the very least, it demonstrates a particular interest in Roman Catholic-Lutheran dialogue which has continued into the present.

This past September, for example, Pope Benedict XVI met with former students in Castel Gandolfo, Italy, to discuss the subject of Roman Catholic dialogue with Lutherans and Anglicans. ….

Slik åpner en artikkel i First THings, og den fortsetter med å beskrive samtaler mellom katolikker og konservative (konfesjonelle) lutheranere (representert ved the International Lutheran Council) som nå har kommet et stykke i Nord-Amerika, mens de eldre samtalene med de største (og mer liberale) lutherske kirrkesamfunnene får stadig større problemer:

… That conference took place this past September in Niagara Falls, Canada. From September 16 to 21, the head bishops and presidents of confessional Lutheran church bodies around the world met for a week of dialogue and discussion. And, in what is perhaps a sign of the times, Bishop Gerard Paul Bergie of St. Catharines, Ontario, brought formal greetings to the ILC on behalf of the Roman Catholic Bishops of Canada—the first time a Roman Catholic has addressed an ILC convention since its founding. In his remarks, Bishop Bergie noted Vatican II’s emphasis on ecumenical dialogue, stressing the value to be found in working together.

Immediately following the bishop’s remarks, Dr. Werner Klän (a professor at Lutheran Theological Seminary Oberursel and a participant in the recent discussions between confessional Lutherans and Roman Catholics) reported on the successes achieved in the German discussions. In noting it was Roman Catholics who initiated conversation with confessional Lutherans, Dr. Klän suggested there was “a deep rooted disappointment [among] Roman Catholics — in Germany at least — with the Lutheran World Federation or some of its member churches.”

While dialogue between Roman Catholics and mainline Lutherans continues, a desire has arisen among Roman Catholics to begin looking to confessional Lutherans for more fruitful dialogue. …

feb 052013
 

Hos Zenit.org kan vi lese hva pave Benedikt sa sist søndag om dagens evangelium:

On Sunday, Pope Benedict XVI addressed the faithful gathered at St. Peter’s Square during his weekly Sunday Angelus address, reminding them of the day’s readings that touched upon announcing the truth without fear.

Recounting the Gospel of Luke, the Holy Father said that the continuation of last Sunday’s Gospel reading where Jesus’ fellow Nazarenes are bewildered by his words, thus fulfilling the proverb: “No prophet is accepted in his own land.

“At this point it is natural to ask: Why did Jesus wish to provoke this rupture?” the Pope said. “At the beginning the people admired him and perhaps they would have achieved a certain consensus… but this is exactly the point: Jesus did not come to seek consensus among men, but – as he will say in the end to Pilate – to ‘bear witness to truth’.”

Pope Benedict went on to say that a true prophet obeys no one but God in order to serve the truth, even if it means personal sacrifice. In regards to Jesus, the Holy Father referred to Him as the “prophet of love.”

“Indeed, love and truth are 2 names of the same reality, 2 names of God,” the Holy Father said.

“Believing in God means giving up our own prejudices and welcoming the concrete form in which he reveals himself: the man Jesus of Nazareth. And this path also leads to recognizing and serving him in others.”

The Supreme Pontiff cited the Blessed Virgin Mary as an enlightening model of one who carries “the mystery in her heart and knew how to welcome it continually more and more on the journey of faith to the night of the cross and the brilliance of the resurrection.”

Following the recitation of the Angelus, Pope Benedict recognized the observation of the first Sunday of February as the “Day for Life” and greeted representatives of the Movement for Life as well as representatives of the departments of Medicine and Surgery of the University of Rome. The Holy Father encouraged them to continue their work and to train healthcare workers “in the culture of life.”

feb 052013
 

I Prim-bønnen 4. februar leste vi slik om neste dags helgener (man forberedes på dem dagen før):

February 5th anno Domini 2013 The 23rd Day of Moon were born into the better life

At Catania, in Sicily, (in the year 251) the holy Virgin and martyr Agatha. In the time of the Emperor Decius, under the Judge Quinctian, she endured buffeting and imprisonment, racking and torments. Her breasts were cut off, and she was rolled upon potsherds and coals, and at last died in prison, in prayer to God.

In Pontus, are commemorated very many holy martyrs in the persecution under the Emperor Maximian, (fourth century.) Some had molten lead poured upon them, some were tortured by having sharp reeds thrust under their nails, and were tormented with many most grievous sufferings, which were renewed again and again, and so by their illustrious passion earned palms and crowns from the Lord.

At Alexandria, the holy martyr Isidore, who in the persecution under the Emperor Decius was beheaded by Numerian, chief of the army, for Christ’s faith’s sake.

In the empire of Japan, [in the year 1597] twenty-six holy martyrs, [some Franciscans, some their pupils, and three Jesuits killed at Naugazaki,] who were crucified, and then died gloriously, transfixed with spears, while they were praising God and proclaiming His Gospel, whose names were enrolled among those of the saints by the supreme Pontiff Pius IX.

At Vienne, (in Dauphiny,) the blessed Confessor Avitus, (in the year 525,) Bishop of that see, by whose faith, labour, and wonderful teaching Gaul was shielded against the Arian heresy.

At Brixen, holy Genuinus, (or Ingenuinus, in the year 640,) Bishop (of Siben, in the Tyrol,) and Albinus, (in the year 1015,) Bishop [of Brixen,] whose lives were rendered glorious by miracles.

Den hellige Agatha feires 5. februar i både den tradisjonelle og den nye kalenderen, mens Japans martyrer er flyttet til neste dag – fra katolsk.no:

De 26 martyrene ble tidligere feiret på dødsdagen 5. februar. I lang tid ble de feiret hovedsakelig i Japan og blant jesuitter og fransiskanere, men i 1970 ble minnedagen tatt inn i den reviderte romerske kalenderen som de første martyrene fra det fjerne østen. Minnedagen ble da flyttet til 6. februar, siden dødsdagen 5. februar er opptatt av den hellige Agathe. Deres navn står i Martyrologium Romanum.

feb 042013
 

Jeg nevnte den nye erkebiskopen i min kones hjemby nylig, og jeg leste tidligere i dag et ganske grundig intervju med ham i den lokale avisa “The Oregonian“. Han svarer godt for seg; etter å sa sagt en hel del om etterdønningene etter seksuelt misbruk av mindreårige i Oregon, sier han:

Q: Catholics in Western Oregon are divided between those who long to return to traditional liturgies and strict adherence to official church teaching and those who are critical of church teaching, often presenting their cases with careful historical and theological reasoning. What do you have to say to these two groups?

A: I am called to be the shepherd of all of those people. I probably Google-up as a more traditional, strong defender of church teaching kind of person. That shouldn’t communicate that I’m not willing to engage in dialogue. I want to understand people’s perspectives.

Q: Are you bringing a more conservative point of view to the archdiocese?

A: I don’t come in with any sense of stridency. It will take me some time to get to know the church, the people there, the culture of Portland and other areas. My first task is to learn, to listen, to observe, not be like a bull in a china shop.

Q: Why are you a fan of the old rite, or Latin Mass?

A: I am completely a product of the second Vatican Council. That period of renewal and reform in the church is part of who I am. I was in college before I really knew what that older Mass was like. I took a music appreciation class and heard Gregorian chant for the first time. Then five years ago, the holy father asked his bishops to be generous with the traditional liturgy for people who were attached to it. I was a bishop, I needed to know both forms. I got my videotapes and learned to do it privately. I’ve had three opportunities to celebrate it as a bishop. From my experience, the old Mass enriches my understanding of the ordinary, or English, Mass. People don’t need to be worried that I’ll suddenly introduce the traditional liturgy in every parish of the archdiocese. But I will be generous with the folks there who request that form.

Q: Women are active in the archdiocese, as teachers at every level of education, as parish administrators and volunteers. Catholic sisters have played and continue to play a major role. Some of these women have organized to challenge the church to use their gifts more effectively. How do you see the role of women in the church?

A: Aside from the issue of women’s ordination, I’m comfortable, supportive and encouraging. I’ve worked with a lot of women in leadership and we’d be lost without them. The feminine genius needs to be part of the conversation.

Q: Some people wonder if you’ll be here in Western Oregon very long. They’ve read that you are a rising star and might move on quickly to another church post. Cardinal Francis George was here for about a year.

A: Listen, that is the farthest thing from my mind. I wasn’t looking for a move. I have every intention to be there for a long time. I’m even thinking of relocating my 84-year-old mother there.

feb 042013
 

For et par dager siden skrev jeg om hvordan kardinal Mahony, tidligere erkebiskop i Los Angels, hadde blitt fratatt alle offisielle oppgaver i erkebispedømmet. Senere er det blitt presisert av nåværende erkebiskop Sanchez at kardinalen på de fleste området kan virke som før:

“Cardinal Mahony, as Archbishop Emeritus, and Bishop Curry, as Auxiliary Bishop, remain bishops in good standing in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, with full rights to celebrate the Holy Sacraments of the Church and to minister to the faithful without restriction.”

På sin egen blogg skriver Mahony et forsvar for sine handlinger, som har følgende innhold: Da han ble erkebiskop og møtte de første overgrepssakene hadde han ingen bakgrunn i sin utdannelse for å kunne takle dem, og andre personer i helsevesen o.l. hjalp heller ikke mye. På 80-tallet var psykologenes syn at overgriperne kunne få behandling og helbredes for sitt problem, og Mahony beklager nå mange avgjørelser han tok den gangen (med å flytte på prester heller enn å stoppe dem for godt). På 90-tallet begynte man å forstå mer av problematikken og alvoret i disse overgrepene, men ikke før 2002 forstod han virkelig hvor alvorlige disse sakene var – og strammet da inn praksisen og reaksjonene mot overgriperne ganske kraftig.

En hel del av denne forklaringen virker ganske sannsynlig, men det må ha vært så alvorlige konkrete ting i papirene erkebispedømmet nå ha offentliggjort, at man måtte markere at det administrative ansvaret kardinalen hadde, og feilene han gjorde, må få konsekvenser.

feb 042013
 

2013_b_sample

Sist uke kunne vi lese på Vatikanets nyhetssider:

On Tuesday Pope Benedict XVI appointed 52-year-old bishop Alexander K. Sample, Metropolitan Archbishop of Portland Oregon, U.S.A. He takes over the pastoral leadership of the Archdiocese of nearly 400,000 Catholics from Archbishop John G. Vlazny who has retired.

Bishop Sample was ordained a priest of the diocese on June 1, 1990, at St. Peter Cathedral in Marquette. He served in several parish assignments before moving to Rome, Italy, from 1994-96 to earn a degree in Canon Law. …. On January 25, 2006, by the mandate of Pope Benedict XVI, he was ordained bishop of Marquette.

Portland er mine kones hjemby og jeg har vært der mange ganger. Jeg fant nyheten på Fr Finigans blogg, og også bildet over, som viser hvordan er biskop gjerne skal se ut (ved høytidelige anledninger).

feb 022013
 

Lesning 7, 8 og 9 forklarer evangeliet på denne festen:

From the Holy Gospel according to Luke Luke 2:22-32
In that time after the days of her purification, according to the law of Moses, were accomplished, they carried him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord: As it is written in the law of the Lord: And so on ….

Homily on this passage by St Ambrose, Bishop of Milan. Bk. 2, Comm. on Luke ii.
And, behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and the same man was just and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel. The birth of the Lord is attested not only by Angels and Prophets, and shepherds, but also by elders and just men. Every age, and both sexes, as well as the miracles of the events themselves, are here to strengthen our faith. A virgin conceiveth, a barren woman beareth, a dumb man speaketh, Elizabeth prophesieth, the wise man worshippeth, the unborn child leapeth, the widow praiseth, and the just man waiteth.

Well is he called just, who looked not for favour for himself, but for consolation for his people. He desired to be set free from the bondage of this frail body, but he waited to see the Promised One for he knew that blessed are the eyes that see Him. Then took he Him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said Lord, now lettest Thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word. Behold a just man, confined in the weary prison of the body, desiring to be dissolved and to begin to be with Christ. For to be dissolved and to be with Christ is much better. Phil. i. 23.

Whosoever will be dissolved and be with Christ, let him come into the Temple, let him come to Jerusalem, let him wait for the Lord’s Christ, let him take hold on the Word of God, let him embrace it with good works, as it were with arms of faith and then let him depart in peace, for he shall not see death, who hath seen life. Behold how the Lord’s Birth doth overflow with abounding grace for all, and prophecy is not denied to the just, but to the unbelieving. Behold, Simeon prophesieth that the Lord Jesus Christ is come for the fall and rising again of many yea, He shall separate the just from the unjust by their deserts, and according as our work shall be, so shall the true and righteous Judge command us to be punished or rewarded.

feb 022013
 

Dette er lesning 4, 5 og 6 til Matutin på denne dagen – fra en preken av den hellige Augustin:

From the Sermons of St Augustin, Bishop of Hippo. 13th on the Season.
In old time it was written: And of Zion shall it not be said This and that man was born in her, and the Highest Himself shall establish her? Blessed be the omnipotence of Him That was born! Blessed the glory of Him That came from heaven to earth! While yet He was borne in His Mother’s womb, He was saluted by John the Baptist; He was presented in the temple, and recognised by that famous, antient, and glorious worthy, the old man Simeon. As soon as he knew Him he worshipped Him, and said Lord, now lettest Thou thy servant depart in peace for mine eyes have seen thy Salvation.

He lingered in the world to see the birth of Him Who made the world. The old man knew the Child, and in that Child became a child himself, for in the love wherewith he regarded the Father of all, he felt his own years to be but as of yesterday. The old man Simeon bore the new-born Christ, and all the while, Christ was the old man’s Lord. It had been told him by the Lord that he should not taste of death before he had seen the birth of the Lord’s Christ. Now Christ is born, and all the old man’s wishes on earth are fulfilled. He That came to a decrepit world came to an old man.

He wished not to remain long in the world, but he longed to see Christ in the world, singing with the Prophet, and saying Shew us thy mercy, O Lord, and grant us thy salvation. Ps. lxxxiv. 8. And now at last, that ye may know that the cause of his joy was that this prayer was granted, he saith Now lettest Thou thy servant depart in peace, for mine eyes have seen thy salvation. The Prophets have sung that the Maker of heaven and earth would converse on earth with men an angel hath declared that the Creator of flesh and spirit would come in the flesh the unborn John, yet in the womb, hath saluted the unborn Saviour yet in the womb. The old man Simeon hath seen God a little Child.

feb 022013
 

På en måte er det ikke noe nytt som her kommer fram om presters misbruk av barn (bortsett fra mange grusomme detaljer), men i forbindelse med at mange dokumenter om dette misbruket, og biskopenes (dårlige) behandling av det, går en biskop av og kardinal Mahony kan ikke ha flere oppgaver for bispedømmet – konfirmasjoner o.a. som pensjonerte biskoper ofte utfører. Fra The Catholic Herald:

Cardinal Roger Mahony will “no longer have any administrative or public duties” as retired Archbishop of Los Angeles because of past failures to protect children from clerical sex abuse, Archbishop José Gomez has said.

Archbishop Gomez, Cardinal Mahony’s successor as Archbishop of Los Angeles, made the statement on the same day the archdiocese published the files of clergy who were the subject of a 2007 global abuse settlement. The material has been posted on a website, along with supporting information that includes the names of senior Church figures.

Archbishop Gomez also accepted Auxiliary Bishop Thomas Curry’s request to be relieved of his responsibility as the regional bishop of Santa Barbara.

Cardinal Mahony, now 76, led the archdiocese from 1985 until his March 2011 retirement. Bishop Curry, 70, was the archdiocese’s vicar of clergy and chief adviser on sexual abuse cases in the mid-1980s.

“These files document abuses that happened decades ago,” Archbishop Gomez said. “But that does not make them less serious. I find these files to be brutal and painful reading. The behaviour described in these files is terribly sad and evil. …”

Jeg leste også om det hos Father Z. tidligere i dag – HER og HER.

feb 022013
 

Dagens fest (2/2) kalles i 1962-kalenderen “In Purificatione Beatae Mariae Virginis”. Her er lesning 1, 2 og 3 til Matutin på denne dagen – om spesielle regler for den førstefødte, og om kvinners rensningstid:

Exod 13:1-3; 13:11-13
1 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 2 Sanctify unto me every firstborn that openeth the womb among the children of Israel, as well of men as of beasts: for they are all mine. 3 And Moses said to the people: 11 When the Lord shall have brought thee into the land of the Chanaanite, as he swore to thee and thy fathers, and shall give it thee: 12 Thou shalt set apart all that openeth the womb for the Lord, and all that is first brought forth of thy cattle: whatsoever thou shalt have of the male sex, thou shalt consecrate to the Lord. 13 The firstborn of an ass thou shalt change for a sheep: and if thou do not redeem it, thou shalt kill it. And every firstborn of men thou shalt redeem with a price.

Lev 12:1-5
1 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 2 Speak to the children of Israel, and thou shalt say to them: If a woman having received seed shall bear a man child, she shall be unclean seven days, according to the days of the separation of her flowers. 3 And on the eighth day the infant shall be circumcised: 4 But she shall remain three and thirty days in the blood of her purification. She shall touch no holy thing, neither shall she enter into the sanctuary, until the days of her purification be fulfilled. 5 But if she shall bear a maid child, she shall be unclean two weeks, according to the custom of her monthly courses, and she shall remain in the blood of her purification sixty-six days.

Lev 12:6-8
6 And when the days of her purification are expired, for a son, or for a daughter, she shall bring to the door of the tabernacle of the testimony, a lamb of a year old for a holocaust, and a young pigeon or a turtle for sin, and shall deliver them to the priest: 7 Who shall offer them before the Lord, and shall pray for her, and so she shall be cleansed from the issue of her blood. This is the law for her that beareth a man child or a maid child. 8 And if her hand find not sufficiency, and she is not able to offer a lamb, she shall take two turtles, or two young pigeons, one for a holocaust, and another for sin: and the priest shall pray for her, and so she shall be cleansed.