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VATICAN CITY — The Second Vatican Council's renewal of the liturgy aimed at changing Catholics' attitude toward the Mass and helping the liturgy change their lives, Pope Benedict said.
"Unfortunately, the liturgy was seen, perhaps even by us pastors and experts, more as an object to reform than as a subject capable of renewing Christian life," the pope said May 6.
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WASHINGTON — Pope Leo XIII's encyclical Rerum Novarum continues to offer lessons to society, said panellists at a conference marking the 120th anniversary of the landmark document.
Workers continue to struggle for decent wages and rights, a struggle not all that different from when the encyclical was published in 1891, said those taking part in the May 2 event at The Catholic University of America.
VATICAN CITY - People of every epoch and in every culture have prayed because people have always recognized there is something greater than themselves in the universe, Pope Benedict said.
"Human life is a mix of good and bad, of undeserved suffering and of joy and beauty, which spontaneously and irresistibly push us to ask God for light and interior strength," the pope said May 4 at his weekly general audience.
VENICE, ITALY — In the city of gondolas and canals, Pope Benedict said Christians must make sure their lives as individuals and communities reflect the life-giving qualities of water and not the chaos and destruction it can bring.
"Water is an ambivalent symbol: of life, but also death; the populations struck by flooding and tsunamis know this," the pope said May 8 at the end of a two-day visit to Aquileia and Venice.
VATICAN CITY - Catholics must be more courageous in highlighting and fostering vocations, Pope Benedict said.
"Every Christian community, every member of the Church needs consciously to feel responsibility for promoting vocations," he said in his message for the World Day of Prayer for Vocations.
When Matthew Morden Durham was working as assistant to the mayor of Windsor, Ont., he was on top of the world. The money was good and he had a great social network.
So when he decided to leave that world to join a religious order, his acquaintances and friends were in total shock. “Are you giving all of this up to join religious life?’ they asked. “What are you doing?”
WASHINGTON — This year's World Day of Prayer for Vocations points to the important role Catholic home life plays in promoting vocations to the priesthood and religious life, said Archbishop Robert Carlson.
The theme for this year — Proposing Vocations in the Local Church - places the responsibility for encouraging vocations on the local Church, said Carlson, who is archbishop of St. Louis.
EDMONTON — Whether through a ministry of presence, feeding the hungry or housing battered women, several orders of sisters have a readiness to lend a hand for Edmonton's most underprivileged inner city residents.
The Franciscan Sisters of the Atonement have been providing services in Edmonton since 1928.
Nine years after his ordination, Father Joselito Cantal remains enamoured with his vocation.
“I’m happy as a priest because I’m doing what God wants me to do,” he says. “God knew my weaknesses and still chose me to serve his people.”
SASKATOON — The Saskatoon Diocese is harvesting a bumper crop of priestly vocations in the next month with two ordinations to the priesthood and another two to the transitional diaconate.
Seven young men have been attending seminary for the diocese, including Hoang Nguyen and Gregory Roth of Saskatoon, who will be ordained to the transitional diaconate in the parishes where they served their internship year in 2009-10.