Category Archives: Faith & Reason

Nuns become Catholic

All Saints nuns.jpgYou may have seen the story of 10 nuns come into full communion with the Catholic Church. The ceremonial aspect of full communion was yesterday but the journey to that point was long in coming individually and corporately. Archbishop Edwin O’Brien of Baltimore received the nuns and is working with them to become a diocesan right community.

Read a story about the event and another leading up to September 3.

The story of these nuns coming into full communion with the Catholic Church is reminiscent of a similar gesture many years ago of the Friars and Sisters of the Atonement also leaving the Episcopal Communion. They are known today as Franciscan of the Atonement doing ecumenical work for the Church.

Former papal theologian considers Obama’s optimism possible

The former Swiss theologian of the papal household under Pope John Paul II, Cardinal Georges Cottier, OP, thinks it’s possible to accept some of Obama’s approach to matters like abortion, etc. as a temporary measure because he perceives Obama as realistic. John Allen writes about the cardinal’s remarks. I think the cardinal’s approach is too optimistic and weak in some areas. What do you think of Cottier’s and Allen’s analysis? Is Cottier realistic or naive?

Read Sandro Magister’s insightful analysis of the Cardinal’s comments.

Vatican Observatory Moves


Vatican Observatory.jpg

The Jesuit report that after residing
more than seventy years within the papal summer Palace itself, the headquarters of the Vatican Observatory recently moved to a new
location in the Papal Gardens at Castelgandolfo. The move was occasioned by
increased demands for space within the Palace, and the growing needs of the
Observatory. Until few weeks ago, the observatory offices were located on the
top floor of Papal Palace, the Pope’s summer home located in the Alban Hills,
25 kilometers southeast of Rome. Its extensive astronomical library is
scattered over four rooms on the top two floors of the Palace, while the
valuable meteorite collection and laboratory, the historic vault of
photographic observations made at the Observatory from 1895 to 1979, and the
classroom where the biennial Vatican Observatory Summer Schools are conducted,
are located on the ground floor of the Palace. Meanwhile, the living
quarters of the Jesuits is divided between rooms on the second and top floors.
With the prospect of half a dozen younger Jesuits joining the staff over the
next five years, the issue of both residence and office space was becoming
acute.

“Moving the Observatory collections and libraries has been
a logistical challenge,” noted Father José Funes, the Argentinean
Jesuit and director of the observatory. “But the new site will allow us to
address a growing need for space and order.” The new quarters,
located in the remodelled monastery built by the Basilian monks within one of
the most beautiful gardens in the Italian peninsula, should provide a far more
peaceful and comfortable setting. The Vatican Observatory traces its
history to the reform of the calendar by Pope Gregory XIII in 1583. It was
re-organized by Pope Leo XIII in 1891, “so that everyone might see clearly
that the Church and her Pastors are not opposed to true and solid science,
whether human or divine, but that they embrace it, encourage it, and promote it
with the fullest possible devotion.”

The faith needs to be intelligible, Pope says

Using the method of Saint Cyril and Methodius Pope Benedict
spoke about the work of the Church in making the faith intelligible to people
using their own language. The task of inculturation is an extremely difficult
work because of the nuances of language and culture. Just look at the headaches
in translating catechisms, papal speeches and liturgical texts today. The
coalescing of faith and culture is a work the Church has done since the time of
Christ. Watch the video clip on the subject.

The Pope said, in
part: 

This was a decisive factor for the development of the Slavic
civilization in general. Cyril and Methodius were convinced that the various
peoples could not consider that they had fully received Revelation until they
had heard it in their own language and read it with the characters proper to
their own alphabet.

To Methodius falls the merit of ensuring that the work
began by his brother would not remain sharply interrupted. While Cyril, the
“philosopher,” tended toward contemplation, he [Methodius] was directed
more toward the active life. In this way, he was able to establish the
foundations of the successive affirmation of what we could call the
“Cyril-Methodian idea,” which accompanied the Slavic peoples in the
various historical periods, favoring cultural, national and religious
development. Pope Pius XI already recognized this with the apostolic letter Quod Sanctum Cyrillum, in which he classified the two brothers as
“sons of the East, Byzantines by their homeland, Greeks by origin, Romans
by their mission, Slavs by their apostolic fruits” (AAS 19 [1927] 93-96).

The historic role that they fulfilled was afterward officially proclaimed by
Pope John Paul II who, with the apostolic letter Egregiae Virtutis
Viri
, declared them co-patrons of Europe, together with St. Benedict (AAS
73 [1981] 258-262). Indeed, Cyril and Methodius are a classic example of what
is today referred to with the term “inculturation”: Each people
should make the revealed message penetrate into their own culture, and express
the salvific truth with their own language. This implies a very exacting work
of “translation,” as it requires finding adequate terms to propose
anew the richness of the revealed Word, without betraying it. The two brother
saints have left in this sense a particularly significant testimony that the
Church continues looking at today to be inspired and guided. (Wednesday Audience, June 17, 2009)

Newt Gingrich on his conversion: an interview



Dan Gilgoff of U.S. News & World Report’s “God & Country” blog posted an exclusive interview in which Newt Gingrich speaks on following his desire to enter into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. 

The former Speaker of the House said in part: “The whole effort to create a ruthless, amoral,
situational ethics culture has probably driven me toward a more overt
Christianity.”

To read the interview

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
coat of arms

Categories

Archives

Humanities Blog Directory