Thursday, May 21, 2009

"Proclaim the gospel to every creature."

Issue Date: May 24, 2009
Ascension Sunday (AscensionB)

BURNING QUESTION: Why don't you evangelize door-to-door?
FEATURED BLOG: The Great Secret of Christian Prayer
VOCATION NEWS: Number of Diocesan Priests Going Up
PASTORAL HISPANA: Buscar las cosas de arriba

Dear Friends,

he Solemnity of the Ascension celebrates the triumphal entry into the heavenly Jerusalem, the true and eternal City of God. Suffering is over. Death has been defeated. There is nothing left for Christ but glory. We celebrate this event in this Sunday's Readings. Please use our Discussions Questions to reflect upon this event during your Bible Study sessions with your family, friends or church group.

Is heaven a place where Jesus ascended out of this world? Fr. Peter deSousa starts things off with a reflection on the Mystery of the Ascension. Canon Dr. Daniel Meynen says this day inaugurates a new era: that of the participation of bodies in the eternal glory of the living God. And Fr. John Dear S.J asks us to reflect on three things about the Ascension: what Jesus told the disciples and us to do; the need for this work, and how are we going to do it.

PROCLAIM THE GOOD NEWS. Fr. Orly Sapuay, MS tells us that at His Ascension, Jesus said the Gospel is to be proclaimed to all creation in all activities and acts of those who have been renewed in baptism. It is at the moment, Fr. Alex McAllister says, that Jesus handed the continuation of his great work over to us, the Church. Those who believe it and accept baptism will be saved, Fr. Joseph Pelligrino reminds us. While Fr. Campion P. Gavaler affirms that people become Christians through the presence of Jesus Christ, not through the mere words of Christianity.

JESUS STAYS WITH US. Jesus may have ascended but, Fr. John Foley, SJ says, He also said He would still be here with us - in the Eucharistic Prayer and Communion. Father Cusick explains that this revelation of Christ in the flesh is our gift. It is Jesus is with us in a powerful and enduring way, Fr. Phil Bloom explains.

THE POPE ON EVANGELIZATION. Marcellino D'Ambrosio says if you feel inadequate to the task, you’re in good company. Even Pope Benedicts admits to it. Pray for the power of the Holy Spirit, Pope Benedict tells us, and take the time to keep learning more about our faith so that we can share it with ever greater confidence. Then he gave the "3-Fold Secret to Evangelization" - a longing for sanctity, contemplation of the face of Christ, and a desire to share him with others. Then he told young children that following the example of the Child Jesus could teach their parents about love.

BLESSED BE THE INTERNET. The internet plays a very significant role in today's evangelization. The director of the Vatican press office affirmed the importance of the Internet as a tool for delivering the Gospel message to people in many different situations. Pope Benedict reinforced this message by encouraging young Catholics to use the Internet to spread the church's message. And we bring you a Mark Shea story about the real-life challenges that internet Catholic evangelists face on a regular basis.

CELIBACY & THE BIBLE. The scandal surrounding the Rev. Alberto Cutie of Florida has raised questions in the minds of many and prompted Fr. Robert Barron to explain why the church continues to defend the practice that seems so unnatural and so unnecessary. And from Rome, the two leading publications for secular opinion in Italy are publishing extensive guides on how to read the Bible. What makes this initiative most unusual is that these newspapers are often critical of the Catholic Church and the Christian faith itself.

PRO-LIFE AMERICA. Here's more good news. A new Gallup Poll finds that for the first time, a majority of U.S. adults now identify themselves as pro-life since Gallup began asking this question in 1995. And in light of the recent Notre Dame controversy, Cardinal Arinze defined what a truly Catholic College should do: "Intellectual formation must be accompanied by morals."

FAMILY LIFE. Here's an interesting look at couples who know a thing or two on the subject of Love Ever After. All of the pairs featured have been married for fifty years or more. And we have their stories. And finally, we bring you the story of a father was not quite thrilled when he ehard they were having a baby girl instead of a baby boy. This is his redemption story: What I’ve Learned Raising a Daughter (Thus Far). Great life lessons to be learned here.

Another event-filled week in our Catholic world. Have a great and blessed new week.

Keep the Faith. Peace.

Wally Arida
Publisher & Editor in chief

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