Pope Benedict XVI is underlining the necessity for every member of the Church to promote religious vocations. This was one of the points emphasized by the Pope in a message for the 48th World Day of Prayer for Vocations, which will be celebrated May 15 on the theme of "Proposing Vocations in the Local Church."
Even in the midst of the upheaval of the Protestant Reformation in Germany, St. Peter Canisius knew how to defend Catholic doctrine without launching personal attacks on those who disagreed, Pope Benedict XVI said. This great Saint knew how to "harmoniously combine fidelity to dogmatic principles with the respect due to each person," visit this article to read more!
During the general audience this week, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about St. Peter Canisius, a Jesuit priest who dedicated his life to theological training of priests. The Pope used him as an example to remind all clergy to be consistent with what they preach.
While ordaining five bishops — two Vatican diplomats and three secretaries of Vatican congregations — Pope Benedict XVI said the prelates were called to help people recognize and respond to their yearning for holiness and goodness:
The Internet can be a valuable tool for Catholic education and evangelization, and its proper use should be encouraged in seminaries as well as other church institutions, Pope Benedict XVI said. He also added that the Congregation for Catholic Education was working on a document titled "Internet and Formation in Seminaries" - so watch this space for the full report when it's released!
Hundreds of members from different religious orders attended an evening ceremony in St. Peter's Basilica with the Pope. The occasion was the feast of the Presentation of the Lord and the World Day for Consecrated Life.
Pope Benedict XVI has said that "vocations are not the result of any human project, or of some efficient organizational strategy," but are rather a gift from God. He also said vocations should be proposed with "courage, delicacy and respect."
According to the most recent published data, the world has 793,709 religious, 8,061 less than the previous year. The number of women entering religious orders is much higher than that of males. Some 739,000 religious are women and only 55,000 of them are men.
February 2nd is the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord - and we also celebrate the World Day of Consecrated Life! This is a special day to remember and pray for people who have taken vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, and was instituted by Pope John Paul II in 1997. So let us pray for all those who have taken these vows, just as they pray for each of us every day.
St Anthony of the Desert is considered the founder of monastic life as he was one of the first to give up everything and live a life of prayer and contemplation in the deserts of Eygpt. Reflect on some of his writings in this video.
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