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Morning Catholic must-reads: 17/09/13

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church

By on Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Pope Francis addresses clergy at the Basilica of St John Lateran yesterday (AP)

Pope Francis addresses clergy at the Basilica of St John Lateran yesterday (AP)

Pope Francis said “the Church has never been so well as it is today” in a wide-ranging address to clergy in Rome yesterday (video).

Archbishop Timothy Broglio, head of the Archdiocese for the Military Services, said he was “shocked and deeply saddened” after a gunman killed at least 12 people in a Washington navy yard yesterday.

Nuncio Archbishop Mario Zenari has said that “two miracles” have taken place in Syria since Pope Francis presided at a vigil for peace in the country.

Andrea Gagliarducci argues that early evidence suggests Pope Francis’s “way of governing may be many things, but it is not collegial“.

Andrew Motyka urges traditionalists to tackle what he calls their “reputation problem“.

Anthony Clark tells the little-known stories of China’s modern Catholic martyrs (part one and part two).

And Jonathan Malesic advises Catholics to beware of MOOCs.

Follow me on Twitter @lukecoppen for updates throughout the day.

  • NatOns

    ‘Pope Francis said “the Church has never been so well as it is today” in a wide-ranging address to clergy in Rome yesterday (video).’

    Some, among our more tradition-loving friends, may – and do, I believe – beg to differ on that idea. However, to dispute this rather prophetic truth is to wholly misunderstand the divine basis on which it must rest – even if the prophet himself has no proper notion of its potential or its enactment.

    To understand me, if not the Holy Father, one must ponder .. as those of us old enough to recall or have heard of ‘I Like Ike’ or SuperMac – leaders of the US of A (Pres Eisenhower) and Britain (PM Macmillan) in the tumultuous and tempestuous mid-1950s to the early-1960s – will more readily understand .. the imagery of ‘You’ve Never Had It So Good’ which is synonymous with a real sea-change in experience, for, in reality, the ordinary man and his family had never before had it so good in experiencing a share of the material wealth (and an exercise of power) in their own countries.

    That sweeping change in the sea of experience, and the Wind of Change that wiped it up yet further, was as confusing as it was amazing; and it this reality that we experience today, not in the material wealth of nations but in the way we experience the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church – the very idea of the People of God telling those allotted to rule that they must do better, and have them mouth agreement, was unimaginable 100 years ago.

    The point that the Holy Father himself does not yet fully perceive in this present change of life in the City of God – as neither Ike Eisenhower or Harold Macmillian could truly have perceived in materialist politics – is that this never-had-it-so-good change is somewhat different to his own treasured ideals.

    What the Holy Father may not understand is that the ‘you’ve-never-had-it-so-good’ experience is in a younger generation’s love for much that his own generation still despises. And what that eager younger generation has not yet grasped (it seems to me) is that it too can spoil the most wonderful gift set before it, as an older generation squandered it .. at times maliciously. For, whether you believe me or not, never before in my own lifetime has such a blessing in wealth of spiritual effort, material resource, and soul-filling grace been at work .. in fulfilling the teachings of the popes, in seeking to deliver on what the Council Fathers actually set out, or in concertedly desiring to experience the Faith that these authorities most wisely advocated.

    ‘Perhaps, in the Year of Faith, it might be a really good idea, to examine our own opinions on the Church’s teachings – notice the things we disagree with, or dislike, or don’t understand well, and take the time to read up what the Church ACTUALLY says about it (instead of relying on what we’ve heard from Joe Bloggs who heard a version of the Church’s teachings from John Doe), pray about it, and ask for the Holy Spirit to guide us in fully understanding why the Church teaches what it teaches (understanding its authentic spirit) based on accurate facts & information.’ Catholic United For The Faith, Blog.