Lex Cordis Caritas - The law of the heart is Love

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November 07, 2010
Our Catholic tradition places special emphasis on praying for those who have died during the month of November. We began this month celebrating All Saints Day on Nov. 1 and All Souls Day on Nov. 2. The month culminates liturgically on the Solemnity of Christ the King, which we will observe on Nov. 21 this year. In a sense these days are all related to each other in expressing our hope for all the dead to be resurrected and live forever in God’s kingdom, and so we pray for all the faithful departed throughout this month.
October 24, 2010
Last Sunday, Oct. 17, I ran and completed the Denver Marathon in 4 hours, 21 minutes and 47 seconds. It was my 17th marathon! The mile-high altitude was a challenge, but it was fun running with some friends. As I’ve done in the past, I used my marathon effort to raise money for charitable causes. Over $17,000 and a vacant lot were donated in the Chicago area to support the Chicago Legal Clinic, which provides legal services for the poor. Here in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois, over $30,000 was raised so far to help pay off the debt of our beautiful Cathedral renovation. I very much appreciate the generosity of all those who contributed. We still have a way to go to retire the outstanding debt of over $2 million, but I am confident that we will do so eventually.
October 09, 2010
In the last issue of the Catholic Times, I wrote about a very significant book, We Hold These Truths: Catholic Reflections on the American Proposition, by Father John Courtney Murray, SJ, which was published 50 years ago. In 1960, Father Murray saw the rise of American secularism and cited a 1952 opinion of the United States Supreme Court that asserted, “We are a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being.”
September 26, 2010
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the publication of a very significant book, We Hold These Truths: Catholic Reflections on the American Proposition, by Father John Courtney Murray, S.J. It is significant not only for what he said but for when he said it. He wrote just before the Second Vatican Council took place. In fact, he was an expert who was called on at that council for his theological expertise, particularly in the area of the relationship between church and state.
September 11, 2010
Sept. 11, 2001 is a day I will always remember. Like other days marked by a significant event, you probably also remember exactly where you were when you first heard the news about the terrorist attacks that day on the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and aboard United Flight 93 over Pennsylvania near Pittsburgh.
August 29, 2010
One of the reasons why I run marathons is to raise money for charity. Over the years, I have used my marathon efforts to solicit funds for Mercy Home for Boys and Girls, the Chicago Legal Clinic, the Cardinal’s Annual Catholic Appeal and other charitable organizations.
August 15, 2010
A recent Google™ search on the Internet for the name “Matthew Shepard” produced 11,900,000 results. Matthew Shepard was a 21-year-old college student who was savagely beaten to death in 1998 in Wyoming. His murder has been called a hate crime because Shepard was gay.
August 01, 2010
I am writing this week from the state of Michigan, where I am visiting the Orchard Lake Schools near Detroit. The Orchard Lake Schools are celebrating their 125th anniversary this year. I am here with Father Christopher House, vocation director for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois, since there is a vocation dimension to our visit that I will explain shortly.
July 18, 2010
The title that I am giving to this column is Lex Cordis Caritas — “The Law of the Heart is Love.” This is the motto that I chose when I was named a bishop in 2003 by our late Holy Father, the beloved and great Pope John Paul II. It is customary for a bishop to choose a motto when he is appointed a bishop to serve as a guiding principle for his ministry. I chose Lex Cordis Caritas — “The Law of the Heart is Love” — because it expresses in a succinct but powerful way the theme that has been the main focus of my ministry as a priest and which I wish to continue to make my ongoing point of reference as a bishop.