Tag Archives: Communio

Joseph Ratzinger in Communio: Anthropology and Culture –published

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Book sales will no doubt sky rocket with Benedict’s resignation next week. But this superficial reason won’t hold those really interested in one of THE most pivotal thinkers of the Church in the 20th and 21st centuries when Volume 2, Joseph Ratzinger in Communio: Anthropology and Culture (Michigan/Cambridge, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2013) is in the mailbox.

Joseph Ratzinger in Communio: Anthropology and Culture is edited by David L. Schindler and Nicholas J. Healy. The 14 texts herein address anthropological themes written by Joseph Ratzinger between 1972 and 2005. That Eerdmans is the publisher is a terrific help since their list is widely acclaimed and ecumenical.

The editors tell us in the introduction of the second volume is to available in one place all of Ratzinger’s articles that appeared in the American edition of Communio, beginning with first edition in 1974. The writings have been grouped into three major categories: Church, anthropology, and theological renewal. Hence, you’ll find in this volume essays on humanity between reproduction and creation; Jesus Christ today; the meaning of Sunday; hope, technological security understood as a problem of social ethics; and God in John Paul II’s “Crossing the Threshold of Hope.”

In 2010, David L. Schindler et al. published what is now known as volume 1 under the title of Joseph Ratzinger in Communio: The Unity of the Church.

If you don’t know about the Communio journal, it is an international quarterly journal of theology and culture, founded in 1972 Hans Urs von Balthasar, Henri de Lubac, Jean-Luc Marion and Joseph Ratzinger, among others. There are 21  Communio study circles that meet to discuss the published articles or some other agreed upon text. As an historical note, Communio was a journal promoted by Father Luigi Giussani for the ongoing theological education of members following the ecclesial movement, Communion and Liberation.

Benedict XVI’s homily for Ash Wednesday: “return to God with all our heart,” and you will be new people

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Today, Ash Wednesday, we begin a new Lenten journey, a journey that extends over forty days and leads us towards the joy of Easter, to victory of Life over death. Following the ancient Roman tradition of Lenten stations, we are gathered for the celebration of the Holy Eucharist. The tradition says that the first statio took place in the Basilica of Saint Sabina on the Aventine Hill. Circumstances suggested we gather in Saint Peter’s Basilica. Tonight there are many of us gathered around the tomb of the Apostle Peter, to also ask him to pray for the path of the Church going forward at this particular moment in time, to renew our faith in the Supreme Pastor, Christ the Lord. For me it is also a good opportunity to thank everyone, especially the faithful of the Diocese of Rome, as I prepare to conclude the Petrine ministry, and I ask you for a special remembrance in your prayer.

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Ecclesial Movements impact Synod of Bishops on Evangelization

By now you ought to see a significant theme in the work of Communio, both on this blog and as a way of being in the Church: it is as Dom Luigi Gioia, OSB Oliv., has said about this theological point, “To describe the whole Church, as well as each Christian community, as a communio before speaking of ‘body,’ or ‘society,’ or ‘institution,’ -terms which have of course their share of truth- is knowingly to make charity the essential element of a Christian community, the condition sine qua non of its existence, its raison d’être.” Charity has as its essential element of extroversion the living and sharing of the truth of the faith received by us from the Trinitarian life of God. Faith is a lens by which we live, it is not a pious statement of what we supposedly believe about God. The sharing of faith, this sharing of charity and faith in a communio, is the heart of evangelization.

 Categories being what they are, are helpful in seeing the division of labor and thinking. This is no less is the true for the Thirteenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, 7 to 28 October, discussing “The new evangelization for the transmission of the Christian faith.”
The leaders from the various ecclesial movements are worth noting because the vital presence they and the movements they represent have in the life of the Church:
  • Br. Enzo Bianchi, prior of the Monastero of Bose (Italy)
  • Maria Voce (Italy), president of the Focolari Movement
  • Marco Impagliazzo (Italy), president of the Sant’Egidio Community
  • Lydia Jimenez Gonzalez (Spain), director general of the “Cruzadas de Santa Maria” Secular Institute
  • Francisco Jose Gomez Arguello Wirtz (Spain), co-founder of the Neo-Catechumenal Way
  • Chiara Amirante, founder and president of the New Horizons Community (Italy)
  • Florence De Leyritz, member of the Alpha France Association (France)
  • Marc De Leyritz, president of the Alpha France Association (France)
  • *Father Julián Carrón, the President of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation might be counted here, too, but he actually is listed by the Holy See among the bishops.

Capuchin Friars open their 84th General Chapter

Capuchin General Chapter logo 2012.jpgBeginning yesterday and for the next five weeks the Capuchin friars are engaged in their 84th General Chapter in Rome. The General
Minister, Friar Mauro Jöhri presides over the Capitulars from many nations. The Capuchins have set a wonderful multilingual website to cover the work of the Chapter, pictures included. Walk with the Capuchins in friendship and prayer for a good meeting guided by the Holy Spirit.

The Sacrifice of the Mass opening the Chapter was celebrated and preached by  Capuchin Bishop John Corriveau former General
Minister. It was reported that Bishop Corriveau, 71, said,

During the homily Bishop Corriveau stated
strongly that when his words did not penetrate the heart of his people the
Prophet Ezechiel acted with deeds and dramatic actions in his own life. No one
understood this way of acting better than Francis of Assisi “Preach the gospel
at all times and when necessary use words”. Quoting Blessed John Paul II, he
said that the Church’s prophetic response to the individualism of our day is
communion: “to make the Church the home and school of communion: this is the
great challenge which is laid before us in the millennium that has just begun.
If we wish to be faithful to God’s plan and respond to the deep expectations of
the world
“(NMI, 43). We have been created to live in communion, to be family.
Bishop Corriveau also said, the call to Trinitarian communion, which for a
Capuchin is a call to fraternity is much more than a slogan. It implies deep
conversion of the heart, Only the heart which is fraternal and decidedly
relation oriented can offer the secularised world a prophetic word. By way of
conclusion he hoped that by keeping our gaze fixed on Christ we would be able
to touch the hearts of the men and women of our day. May this Chapter discover
once again the relational aspect of our Franciscan inheritance. In this way we
will be able to assist the Church to give visible expression to a spirituality
of communion
. (Capuchin website for the Chapter)

May Our Lady of the Angels, Saints Francis and Clare and all Capuchin saints, pray for the Capuchins and their work for the Church and the Order.
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Christ’s desire for unity, a communio

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The Papal General Audience given in the Paul VI Hall today, Benedict spoke of the desire for unity that our Lord expressed in his priestly prayer at the Last Supper (John 17):

Against the backdrop of the Jewish feast of expiation Yom Kippur, Jesus, priest and victim, prays that the Father will glorify him in this, the hour of his sacrifice of reconciliation. He asks the Father to consecrate his disciples, setting them apart and sending them forth to continue his mission in the world. Christ also implores the gift of unity for all those who will believe in him through the preaching of the apostles.

Sacred Scripture and sacred Tradition and now echoed by Pope Benedict, believes that Christ’s priestly prayer is understood as His instituting the Church, the community of faith, the communio found  explicitly in a church that is one, holy, catholic and apostolic. Taking the Pauline manner of thinking, we are disciples of Christ who, through faith in Christ, are one and share in His saving mission:

In meditating upon the Lord’s priestly prayer, let us ask the Father for the grace to grow in our baptismal consecration and to open our own prayers to the needs of our neighbors and the whole world. Let us also pray, as we have just done in the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, for the gift of the visible unity of all Christ’s followers, so that the world may believe in the Son and in the Father who sent him.

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.
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