رابطة قدامى الإكليريكية البطريركية المارونية

Le pape invite à la Journée mondiale des pauvres à Lourdes


Les faits 

Par un message vidéo diffusé vendredi 11 octobre par l’association Fratello, le pape François invite à se rendre à Lourdes pour la Journée mondiale des pauvres, du lundi 14 au jeudi 17 novembre.

  • Nicolas Senèze, à Rome, 
  • le 11/10/2019 à 19:13


Sur le compte Twitter de l’association Fratello, le pape François a appelé à « aller à la Journée mondiale des pauvres » qui se déroulera du 14 au 17 novembre prochains à Lourdes..KASIA STREK/CIRIC

« N’hésitez pas, allez à la Journée Mondiale des Pauvres à Lourdes ! Je vous bénis et vous accompagne d’ici.» Pape François, 5 octobre 2019

Memo to Synod: If you don’t want focus on married priests, give us something else


Oct 13, 2019


Bishop Robert W. McElroy of San Diego arrives for the first session of the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon at the Vatican Oct. 7, 2019. (Credit: CNS photo/Paul Haring.)

DENVER, Colorado - Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston, who speaks both fluent Spanish and Portuguese and has long experience of Latin America, is a papal appointee among the 184 voting members of the Oct. 6-27 Synod of Bishops on the Amazon. As he generally does, O’Malley is using his blog to share impressions, and on Friday he issued a mild rebuke to reporters that could be a sign of things to come.

“Despite the impression that is being given in the media,” O’Malley wrote, “the synod is not some sort of a referendum on priestly celibacy.”

Before the synod even began, Pope Francis himself insisted that married priests would not be its main focus, saying it’s chiefly about evangelization in the Amazon.

It’s reminiscent, in a way, of similar complaints around the two synods for the family in 2014 and 2015, in which officials and participants complained of an excessive media focus on debate over Communion for Catholics who divorce and remarry outside the Church. Famously, such frustrations were what led Francis to deal with the subject only in a footnote in his 2016 document after the synods, Amoris Laetitia.

Yet in all fairness, it’s not as if the idea of ordaining married men to serve isolated rural communities in the Amazon which, at present, may see a priest no more than once a year, hasn’t actually been pretty prominent.

There appears to be considerable support for ordaining the so-called viri probati, meaning tested married men, with Retired Bishop Erwin Kräutler of Xingu, Brazil, telling reporters Wednesday that “two-thirds” of bishops in the hall back it. On Saturday morning, according to a Vatican news bulletin, another participant floated the idea of a sort of “short-term” ordination to fill specific gaps.

“A speech proposed launching local experiences of temporary ministries for married men, provided they’re recognized and approved by the local ordinary and by the ecclesial community,” the bulletin reported.

One might think today’s canonization of John Henry Newman might provide a respite from such debates, but honestly, it’s just as likely to contribute to them, with various people jousting during the days to come over what Newman might say about the Amazon synod if he were around today.

(In the Apologia, Newman said that Catholicism’s defense of an unmarried priesthood at a time when it was unraveling in the Church of England was an early part of the journey that led to his conversion: “Her zealous maintenance of the doctrine and the rule of celibacy, which I recognized as Apostolic, and her faithful agreement with Antiquity in so many other points which were dear to me, was an argument as well as a plea in favor of the great Church of Rome.”)

However, voices such as O’Malley do have a point that the discussion in the current synod is far broader than a “yes” or “no” to married priests, touching on disparate themes such as ecology, the impact of extractive industries, the rights and dignity of indigenous persons, the importance of education, the inequities of globalized capitalism, and lots else besides.

Perhaps one difficulty in getting those of us in the media to focus on those subjects is that while they’re undeniably important, it’s hard to know what the Catholic Church can really do about them. In concrete terms, the pope could permit married priests tomorrow; he cannot, at least by himself, reverse climate change or solve income inequalities.

In that light, if synod participants are indeed irritated by what they see as an excessive focus on married priests, perhaps it’s time to begin putting other specific steps on the table which are actually under the Church’s control.

For instance, there have been a couple of fleeting mentions so far of the idea of a special rite of the Mass for the Amazon, which would signal respect for indigenous cultures and religiosity by incorporating some of their language and customs into the liturgy. Such an adaptation would be similar to the so-called “Zaire Use” version of the Mass proposed by African bishops in 1969, after the Second Vatican Council, and finally promulgated in 1988.

If there’s indeed support for it, perhaps participants could begin fleshing out what such an inculturated Amazonian liturgy might look like, including exactly what language and which rituals could be included. That could well give the media something else to bandy about, especially in light of the mini-fracas that erupted just before the synod when Pope Francis took part in an indigenous ceremony staged in the Vatican gardens.

To take a different example, there’s been a considerable amount of talk about promoting the role of women in the Church in the Amazon, with one speaker yesterday morning insisting that religious sisters especially should “no longer walk ‘behind’ but ‘beside’ ordained clergy, in the perspective of an ecclesial synodality far from clericalism.”

Perhaps it’s time to get concrete about that too.

For instance, though so far as I know no one’s mentioned this yet, what about reviving a modern form of the medieval abbess? It’s well known that some abbesses in the Middle Ages, though never ordained, de facto were far more powerful than many bishops, owning vast tracts of land, supervising clergy, and acting as landlords, revenue collectors, magistrates, and managers.

Perhaps some equivalent to the strong abbess role could be envisioned for women religious in the Amazon today, which, among other things, might help convince people the Church means what it says when it insists ordination is not about power but service.

Granted, it may be unlikely that either of those steps, which could come off mostly as inside Catholic baseball, would have as much media cachet as the idea of married priests. At least, however, if a reporter were to ask, “What else should we be talking about that’s actually up to you?” there’d be an answer.

Give us something else to talk about, in other words, and - well, then, we’ll talk.


Singer Andrea Bocelli venerates the body of St. Padre Pio


Fabio Diena / Shutterstock


Patty Knap | Oct 08, 2019

"I have always felt the protection of St. Pius," said the legendary opera singer.

At San Giovanni Rotondu, on the occasion of his 61st birthday, on September 22, the legendary opera singer Andrea Bocelli venerated the body of St. Padre Pio, whose shrine, the Sanctuary of St. Pio of Pietrelcina, is located in this town on the east coast of Italy.

He then gave an interview to Foggia Today, an Italian news outlet. “In 2000 I came here and entrusted my father to Padre Pio; he died the following day,” explains Bocelli at FoggiaToday. “Since then a strong bond has remained. I have always felt the protection of St. Pius.“

Bocelli participated in the Mass celebrated by Monsignor Nunzio Galantino, president of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See, in honor of St. Padre Pio’s death and feast day at the Shrine of St. Padre Pio. Bocelli sang during the Mass, and visited the room of the beloved saint.


République tchèque, l’Église recense ses fidèles dans le pays le plus athée d’Europe


Les catholiques tchèques assistant à la messe dominicale du 6 octobre étaient invités à remplir un document concernant leur pratique. Cinq ans après le précédent recensement, ce comptage intervient dans un des pays les plus athées Europe, même si un noyau de fidèles, plutôt jeunes, perdure.

  • Augustine Passilly, 
  • le 08/10/2019 à 11:21 


L'église de Notre-Dame-de-Tyn, à Prague, en République tchèque. Le comptage de 2014 avait conclu à une pratique plus soutenue en Moravie (à l’est) avec ses 282 000 fidèles réguliers quand la Bohême (où se situe la capitale).ALAIN DELPEY/MAXPPP


Les catholiques de République tchèque étaient invités, le 6 octobre, avant de quitter la messe dominicale, à remplir un document sur leur pratique cultuelle. Anonyme, ce comptage se révèle à l’initiative de l’Église. « Cela permet aux évêques et aux vicaires généraux d’avoir une vision d’ensemble de la situation dans leur diocèse mais aussi de connaître le profil des pratiquants », précise le site de l’Église catholique tchèque.

La dernière opération de ce type a révélé, cinq ans plus tôt, que 420 000 personnes assistaient régulièrement aux offices, soit moins de quatre habitants sur cent. Pour des raisons historiques, le pays est l’un des plus athées d’Europe, même si les fidèles.

Pope opens synod urging bishops ‘not to kick the Holy Spirit out of the hall’


Oct 7, 2019


Pope Francis speaks during the opening session of the Amazon synod, at the Vatican, Monday, Oct. 7, 2019. (Credit: AP Photo/Andrew Medichini.)

ROME - Pope Francis launched his high-stakes summit on the Amazon into orbit Monday, opening things up by blasting ideologies that disrespect native and indigenous cultures and urging bishops and other participants not to “kick the Holy Spirit out of the hall” as the Oct. 6-27 event unfolds.

“Ideology is a dangerous weapon,” the pope said, opening the first working session of the Synod of Bishops on the Amazon.

“It’s reductive and leads us to exaggerate our pretense to intellectually understand [a culture] without admiring it or taking it up ourselves,” Francis said. Such “slogans,” the pontiff said, “serve to divide, annihilate and destroy,” saying their toxic consequences can be seen in the “extermination of the majority of indigenous persons” in the Amazon.

Nor is such disrespect confined to the past, Francis said, noting that just yesterday he’d heard a semi-joking complaint from someone about the feathered headdress one of the natives had worn inside the Vatican.

“What’s the difference between that and the birettas worn by some of the cardinals of our dicasteries?” the pope asked, drawing strong laughter from the synod hall.

Francis rued what he called a tendency to see some cultures as “second-class civilizations,” which, he said, “distances us from the reality of a people and separates us from them, which is disrespect.”

The pontiff also spent some time laying out his vision for a Synod of Bishops, saying it’s “not about who has more power to impose their own plans and ideas.”

“A synod is walking together, following the breath of the Holy Spirit,” Francis said. “The Holy Spirit is the principal author of the synod, so let’s not kick him out of the hall.”

In that spirit, Francis appeared to ask the roughly 185 bishops and 100 or so other participants in the synod to exercise caution when speaking to reporters during the synod.

“It could be damaging if I leave the hall and just say whatever I think without reflecting on it,” he said. “We’ve seen it at other synods,” asking participants to use “prudence” and a “soft touch.” In the past, he said, there’s sometimes been the impression of one synod inside the hall and another outside.

His last admonition to participants was to “not lose a sense of humor,” and Francis displayed that quality himself Monday morning. At one point he noted that after every four speeches in the synod there will be a four-minute pause for silence, and said some people had warned him such a break would be dangerous because people might go to sleep.

“At the synod for youth, we saw it was the opposite,” he joked. “They slept during the speeches, at least some of the speeches, and woke up for the silence.”

Francis spoke in Spanish, the most widely shared language in the Amazon synod.

The morning began with a procession in which the pontiff and some 300 bishops filed out of St. Peter’s Basilica after a prayer service, into a square that had been cleared of the public for the occasion, slowly making their way to the Vatican’s synod hall. Indigenous persons sang hymns both in native languages and Spanish, carried symbolic gifts and a native image of Mary in a small replica canoe, held aloft a multi-colored fishing net, and brandished images of the Amazon’s martyrs and St. Oscar Romero of El Salvador as well as posters calling for “integral ecology.”

Those martyrs memorialized by signs included Father Rodolfo Lunkenbein, a German missionary in Brazil shot to death at his Salesian mission in 1976, and Galdin Pataxo, an indigenous activist murdered in Brazil’s capital city by five upper-class youth in 1997.

Bishops and other participants were also given a small white bag with the synod’s logo, made entirely of natural fiber as a sign of the summit’s “green” ethos. More broadly, the Vatican plans to replant a stretch of Amazon rainforest sufficient to offset the entire assembly’s carbon footprint.

Following the pope’s remarks Monday, Italian Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, secretary of the Synod of Bishops, was scheduled to provide a general overview of the meeting, while Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Hummes, the relator (chairman), was to discuss its key themes and ambitions.