Kitchen Catechism: Eye on The Pope
WELCOME, HOLY FATHER!
Thank you for coming to St. Louis!
Throughout your pontificate you have traveled like a good shepherd to all corners of the world to bring us the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Tireless apostle and leader of Our Lord's One True Church, you inspire us to give of ourselves totally, selflessly, and joyfully to the cause of the Gospel, and for the benefit of all humanity. Godspeed and God Bless!
Our title CatholicWomen.com - making a difference, makes me ponder how can best we listen to the Pope’s messages to America, as well as the world, and then do what we are dedicated to doing, make a difference. The Pope is one of the wisest, best thinkers of our age so a sincere effort should drive us to listen and act. He is also well loved by us and we know our love is reciprocated, and that he is serving our very best interests in this world as well as the next. So we will study the themes and messages the Pope proclaimed while visiting us and those currently being promulgated; we will summarize them and then decide how we can most effectively disseminate and act upon them.
In preparation for his trip to America the pope convened a Synod of the Bishops of the Americas in Rome. At its conclusion three themes emerged: conversion, communion and solidarity. Conversion was further defined as including, what is called, the new evangelization.
Following the Synod for America, the Holy Father made a statement which was of particular relevance to us:
“There is a need to help women in America to take an active and responsible role in the church’s life and mission.”
These gratifying, encouraging and supportive words should motivate Catholic women to strive more diligently than ever to walk in the footsteps of Mary, bringing Jesus to the world, proclaiming His message and putting His words into action.
Concluding his Apostolic Exhortation, in which the Pope took up the proposals of the Synod Fathers, he gladly welcomed their suggestion to compose a prayer for the families of America. John Paul began with the following request:
"I invite individuals, communities and ecclesial groups, wherever two or more gather in the Lord's name, to strengthen through prayer the spiritual bond between all American Catholics. Let everyone join in the prayer of the Successor of Peter, invoking Christ who is 'the way of conversion, communion and solidarity in America'."
We thank you, Lord Jesus, because the Gospel of the Father's love, with which you came to save the world, has been proclaimed far and wide in America as a gift of the Holy Spirit that fills us with gladness. We thank you for the gift of your Life, which you have given us by loving us to the end: your life makes us children of God, brothers and sisters to each other. Increase, 0 Lord, our faith and our love for you, present in all the tabernacles of the continent.
Grant us to be faithful witnesses to your Resurrection for the younger generation of Americans, so that, in knowing you, they may follow you and find in you their peace and joy. Only then will they know that they are brothers and sisters of all God's children scattered throughout the world.
You who, in becoming man, chose to belong to a human family, teach families the virtues which filled with light the family home of Nazareth. May families always be united, as you and the Father are one, and may they be living witnesses to love, justice and solidarity; make them schools of respect, forgiveness and mutual help, so that the world may believe; help them to be the source of vocations to the priesthood and the consecrated life, and all the other forms of firm Christian commitment.
Protect your Church and the Successor of Peter, to whom you, Good Shepherd, have entrusted the task of feeding your flock. Grant that the Church in America may flourish and grow richer in the fruits of holiness.
Teach us to love your Mother, Mary, as you loved her.
Give us strength to proclaim your word with courage in the work of the new evangelization, so that the world may know new hope. Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother of America, pray for us!
Given at Mexico City, 22 January, in the year 1999, the twenty-first of my Pontificate. --Joannes Paulus II
The Pope in Mexico City invited the youth from the "information age" to do everything in their power so that all institutions -- political, scientific, financial and cultural -- put themselves at the true service of humanity, without distinctions of race or social status.
"Tomorrow's society ought to know, thanks to all of you -- due to the joy that springs from your Christian Faith lived in its fullness -- that the human heart finds peace and total happiness only in God."
"As good Christians, you also must be exemplary citizens, capable of working along people of good will, to transform towns and regions, with the strength of Jesus' Truth and a Hope that does not diminish at the face of difficulty."
"Try to put into practice St. Paul's advice: 'Don't let yourself be defeated by evil; rather, overcome evil with good.'"