Last week at the University of Notre Dame (my alma mater) members of the various religious orders along with a secular priest, spoke about their place in the Church. In church lingo: they spoke about their charism (the diivne gift). As you know ND was founded and continues to be sponsored by the Congregation of Holy Cross (CSC) but through the years members of religious orders like the Franciscans, Jesuits and Dominicans (among others) have worked and/or studied at ND. The richness ot the women religious ought to be explored at some point.
St. Charles Borromeo is celebrating their 25th anniversary as a
congregation of priests. The Fraternity is a new community of priests in the Church, founded by Monsignor Massimo Camisasca in 1985. It was signed into Church law in 1999 by Pope John Paul II as a Society of Apostolic Life. On Saturday, February 13, His Holiness Pope Benedict
XVI met with the Fraternity’s
founder, leadership and seminarians. Here’s the text of the Pope’s address
to members of the Fraternity.
It is with real joy that I meet with you, priests
and seminarians of the Fraternity of St. Charles, who have gathered here on the
occasion of the 25th anniversary of its birth. I greet and thank the founder
and superior general, Monsignor Massimo Camisasca, his council and all of you,
relatives and friends who are part of the community’s circle. I greet in
particular the Archbishop of the Mother of God of Moscow, Monsignor Paolo
Pezzi, and Don Julián Carrón, president of the Fraternity of Communion and
Liberation, which symbolically expresses the fruits and the roots of the work
of the Fraternity of St. Charles. This moment brings back to my mind my long
friendship with Monsignor Luigi Giussani and bears witness to his charisma.
Released earlier today, the Pope gave the Church his thinking and hopes for the living and the promotion of vocations. Very clear is the Pope’s insistence on one’s being familiar with the Scriptures, friendship with the Lord cultivated through personal and liturgical prayer. Also, one’s own self-awareness factors into the discernment of one’s vocation, whether to religious life, priesthood or to the lay state. May the Lord of the Harvest grant an increase.
The 48th World
Day of Prayer for Vocations, to be celebrated on 15 May 2011, the Fourth Sunday
of Easter, invites us to reflect on the theme: “Proposing Vocations in the
Local Church”. Seventy years ago, Venerable Pius XII established the Pontifical
Work of Priestly Vocations. Similar bodies, led by priests and members of the
lay faithful, were subsequently established by Bishops in many dioceses as a
response to the call of the Good Shepherd who, “when he saw the crowds,
had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd”,
and went on to say: “The harvest is plentiful but the labourers are few.
Pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into his
harvest!” (Mt 9:36-38).
In today’s feast we contemplate the Lord Jesus whom
Mary and Joseph take to the Temple “to present him to the Lord” (Luke
2:22). Revealed in this evangelical scene is the mystery of the Son of the
Virgin, the consecrated One of the Father, who came into the world to carry out
his will faithfully (cf. Hebrews 10:5-7).
Simeon points to him as “light
for revelation to the Gentiles” (Luke 2:32), and proclaims with prophetic
word his supreme offer to God and his final victory (cf. Luke 2:32-35). It is
the meeting of the two Testaments, the Old and the New. Jesus enters the
ancient Temple, He who is the new Temple of God: He comes to visit his people,
bringing to fulfillment obedience to the Law and inaugurating the end times of