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Comment & Dialogue
Word and Worship
Lex Cordis Caritas - The law of the heart is Love
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Fostering active participation of the people of God in divine worship
April 15, 2018
Continuing our overview of the 12 synodal declarations of our fourth diocesan synod, we come now to the eighth declaration, which says: “The art of celebrating the liturgy properly and adoring the Lord in the Eucharist devoutly (ars celebrandi et adorandi) is the key to fostering the active participation of the people of God in divine worship. The clergy of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois must consider the celebration of the liturgy as their principal duty.” This declaration is taken from the opening paragraph of my first pastoral letter, which I issued on June 22, 2014.
Hand on Catholic faith to the next generation
April 01, 2018
Taking to heart our Risen Lord’s command to “go and make disciples,” this great commission pertains not only to religious missionaries who go off to foreign lands to preach the Gospel, but also to the responsibility of our local parish communities to pass on the faith to the next generation. The seventh declaration of our fourth diocesan synod addresses how to carry out this responsibility.
Young people need the Holy Spirit at an early age
March 18, 2018
Previously we saw that the fifth declaration of our fourth diocesan synod addresses the life-long catechetical formation needed to prepare people to be disciples of our Lord and stewards of his creation. This relates to the proper sequence and age for receiving the sacraments of initiation, which is addressed in the sixth declaration of the fourth diocesan synod.
Fifth declaration: catechetical formation
March 04, 2018
Having looked previously at the first four declarations of our fourth diocesan synod, we now look at the fifth declaration. Since the previous declarations of the synod addressed our communal commitment to the discipleship and stewardship way of life and described for us as individuals what it means to have a relationship with Jesus Christ, the fifth declaration of the synod addresses the life-long catechetical formation needed to prepare people to be disciples of our Lord and stewards of his creation.
To be a disciple means to accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior
February 18, 2018
We come now to the fourth declaration of our fourth diocesan synod. The first three declarations of the synod addressed our communal commitment to the discipleship and stewardship way of life as a community of faith, setting our pastoral initiatives in relation to holiness, and growing both in terms of the numbers of followers of Jesus Christ as well as in the depth of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Our fourth synodal declaration seeks to describe more for us as individuals what it means to have a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Grace is the key to growth in the church
February 04, 2018
Previously we have discussed the first two declarations of our fourth diocesan synod, in which we declared our commitment as a diocese to the discipleship and stewardship way of life and pledged to set all pastoral initiatives in relation to holiness. Today we will consider the third declaration of our diocesan synod
Second synodal declaration: holiness
January 21, 2018
In the previous issue of Catholic Times, we discussed the first declaration of our diocesan synod, in which we proclaimed a new mission statement. Today we will look at the second declaration of our fourth diocesan synod, which states, “In the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois, ‘all pastoral initiatives must be set in relation to holiness’ and will invite people to a life of discipleship and stewardship.” That seems quite simple and even obvious, but it is deeply profound.
First synod declaration proclaims a new mission statement for our diocese
January 07, 2018
In this and in the upcoming issues of Catholic Times, I will explore each of these 12 Synodal Declarations in more detail, not only in terms of what they say, but also why we have made these declarations. The first of these declarations proclaims a new mission statement for all of us as members of this diocese.
Catholic Times continues anew as diocese continues renewed, post-synodal
December 24, 2017
Welcome to the first issue of Catholic Times in our new magazine format. The changes you see are not just in appearance, but rather are a total redesign to a more modern, more convenient magazine format that I hope you will find more appealing. At the same time, we will continue to address matters of interest to our readers concerning issues and events involving the life of faith in the local communities of our diocese as well as in the universal Catholic Church throughout the world. My column will continue to be a regular feature of Catholic Times. Since breaking news is often readily available today through the internet, our approach through Catholic Times will not necessarily aim at giving you the latest scoop on current events, but will focus more on going deeper into a story to help you understand the spiritual dimensions and religious implications for people of faith trying to live as committed disciples of Jesus Christ and grateful stewards of his generous gifts of creation. We will also give you a Catholic perspective of the news to counter and correct the anti-religious bias often found in the secular media.
In the news: Are office romances still allowed?
December 10, 2017
In recent days, news reports have been filled with stories about accusations of sexual harassment involving powerful figures in the entertainment and media industries such as Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, actor Kevin Spacey, comedian Louis C.K., political journalist Mark Halperin, veteran TV talk-show host Charlie Rose, Today Show co-host Matt Lauer, and the author and radio personality Garrison Keillor. Politicians such as Sen. Al Franken of Minnesota and Congressman John Conyers of Michigan have also been accused of sexual misconduct. In light of these scandals alleging abuse of power to coerce sexual favors, some commentators have been asking questions such as: Is office romance still allowed? Are new rules needed for the workplace?
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