There is a stirring image that has been circulating around the internet this week after the horrific attacks in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday by Islamic militants against Christians and Western interests. It is a picture of a statue of the Risen Christ, taken in a Catholic Church that was a site of an attack. The statue of the Resurrected Lord Jesus is covered in blood, the blood of Christians killed in a terrorist attack.
Easter Sunday is the great feast of the Christian faith. Without the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead, Christianity would be reduced to some nice humanistic feeling and nothing more – a nice set of rules to live in peace with one another. But with the Resurrection, we are given the assurance that life means more. It is a sharing in the life of the Creator and a prelude to what is to come.
Cardinal Donald Wuerl, who served as the sixth Archbishop of Washington, submitted his required resignation from his See at the age of 75 three years ago, but it wasn’t until recently that His Holiness, Pope Francis, accepted it, appointing Cardinal Wuerl as the Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of Washington.
Nothing has ignited the Pro-Life cause in New York State more than the recent passage of the Reproductive Health Act, championed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Obviously mistitled, the legislation allows for the abortion of babies, even as they are being born. Making matters worse, the act allows no intervention on behalf of the child even if he or she is born alive.
In an audience on Saturday, March 23, with over 1,000 school-age children from the Barbarigo Catholic School in Padua, Italy, Pope Francis, challenged the young students to find a point of reference when trying to make a decision.
Last week, while presiding at the Stations of the Cross in his Co-Cathedral in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, the Cardinal-Archbishop of Galveston-Houston, Daniel DiNardo, who is also the President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, suffered a stroke.
The violence that occurred in Christchurch, New Zealand, against worshippers in a mosque, orchestrated by an individual, a true domestic terrorist, who was a white supremacist, leaving behind a lengthy manifesto, was truly horrific.
Auxiliary Bishop Rene A. Valero, who died this past week, was a significant figure in the life of the Church in Brooklyn and Queens. He was the first person of Hispanic heritage to be ordained as a Bishop for the diocese. He also performed pioneer service for Catholic Charities, the Office of Hispanic Ministry and the Catholic Migration Office.
By the time that you are reading this, the Holy Season of Lent has begun. Lent is a season of penitential preparation for the celebration of the Lord’s Resurrection at Easter. As we progress in this season, it might be good for us to recall that the Church prescribes three main ways for us to grow in our spiritual life during Lent: prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Here are some practical suggestions on how we can grow in these three disciplines this Lent:
As we write this, the Vatican is holding its meeting for the heads of the Catholic Episcopal Conferences from around the world on the sad and distressing topic of child sex abuse.