Loading
Pope Benedict calls for revolution of holiness in Africa
Pope Benedict during his visit to Africa this past March.
Pope Benedict during his visit to Africa this past March.

.- In St. Peter’s Basilica, during Sunday’s Opening Mass for the Synod of African Bishops, Pope Benedict XVI preached holiness as a means to societal reconciliation and peace. The Holy Father also called for a new evangelization of Africa, highlighting the primacy of God, marriage and protecting children from violence as the areas most in need of the Gospel.
 
Benedict XVI, who visited Cameron and Angola in March of this year, began by stating the unity between this Synod and the first one opened in 1994 by Pope John Paul II.
 
This “spiritual lung” that is Africa risks two “dangerous diseases,” he warned. "First, a disease that has spread throughout the Western world, namely practical materialism, combined with relativistic and nihilistic thinking.” The second, he said, is “religious fundamentalism. Mixed with political and economic interests, groups claiming different religious affiliations are spreading in Africa.”
 
For Pope Benedict, the work of the Synod must focus on two themes: marriage and children.

"Marriage as the Bible presents it, does not exist outside of our relationship with God,” he said. "To the extent that it preserves and develops its faith, Africa can find huge resources to donate to the benefit of the family founded on marriage."
 
The Synod, the Pope advised, should pay attention to "the reality of childhood, which is a large and unfortunately suffering part of the African population." The Church in Africa, he said, "manifests her own motherhood towards the smallest children, even those not yet born, for as the Lord Jesus, the Church does not see them primarily as recipients of care, lesser still as vessels for pietism or exploitation, but persons in their own right.”
 
To address these challenges, the Holy Father continued, the Church in Africa must implement “a new evangelization, which takes account of the rapid social changes of our time and the phenomenon of worldwide globalization.” In addition to numbers, "We need to focus increasingly on the 'high standard' of Christian life, that is holiness. Pastors, and all members of the ecclesial community, are called to be saints.”
 
He added: “The lay faithful are called to spread the fragrance of holiness in the family, workplace, school and all other social and political spheres. May the Church in Africa be a family of true disciples of Christ, where the difference between ethnic groups becomes a motive and stimulus for mutual human and spiritual enrichment."
 
"Reconciliation,” the Pontiff recalled, “is a gift of God that men have to plead for and accept. It is the stable foundation on which to build peace, a prerequisite for true progress of mankind and society, according to the design of justice willed by God.” 
 
“By the redeeming grace of the Risen Lord,” he proclaimed, “Africa will be ever more enlightened by his light and, guided by the Holy Spirit, it will become a blessing for the universal Church, contributing their own and qualified to building a world more just and fraternal world.”
 
At the conclusion of his homily, Benedict XVI asked the cloistered monasteries and religious communities in Africa and spread all over the world, parishes and movements, the sick and suffering to accompany with prayer the work of the Synod Fathers "so that the Lord render fruitful this second Special Assembly.”


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Preferential option for the poor
God is alive, even in sport
'A forbidden God' named Best Film at the International Catholic Film Festival
Vatican backs a 'Pause for Peace' during World Cup final
The effects of religious violence in Sarajevo 
The origin of Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi at the Vatican 
Homage to an Indian Cardinal
Train of the Child's Light
New book explaining gestures of the Mass
Encounter between Pope Francis and the Charismatic Renewal in the Spirit Movement.
Religious tensions subside amid Balkan floods
John Paul II Center for Studies on Marriage and Family
Saint John Paul II on cartoon
Syrian Christian refugees
Papal Foundation Pilgrimage
Exorcism or prayer of liberation?
First meeting of Commission for Protection of Minors
Jul
22

Liturgical Calendar

July 22, 2014

Saint Mary Magdalene

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 13:24-43

Gospel
Date
07/20/14
07/19/14
07/18/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Mic 7: 14-15, 18-20

Saint of the Day

St. Mary Magdalene »

Saint
Date

Homily of the Day

Mt 12:38-42

Homily
Date
07/21/14
07/20/14
07/19/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: