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Archive for December, 2013

cns-logoAn editorial from the Dec. 11 issue of Our Sunday Visitor, a national Catholic newsweekly based in Huntington, Ind. It was written by the editorial board.

The outpouring of tributes for Nelson Mandela this Advent season has underscored the world’s hunger for leaders and for reconcilers. Although he began his political career as an armed revolutionary dedicated to overthrowing an oppressive racist system, Mandela evolved into a political leader capable of bringing together enemies. He eschewed revenge for reconciliation. He has become a symbol of what leaders can do, and the extravagant words eulogizing his memory seem in part a critique of a world today that lacks such leaders. (more…)

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Pope Francis smiles as he arrives to lead his general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican Dec. 18. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

Pope Francis smiles as he arrives to lead his general audience in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican Dec. 18. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

By Francis X. Rocca Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis said Christmas is an occasion of joy but also a lesson in humility, when the faithful are called to imitate the example of God-made-man.

The pope made his remarks Dec. 18, during his weekly public audience in St. Peter’s Square.

“God abases himself, descends to earth as someone small and poor, which means that to be like him we should not put ourselves above others, but on the contrary, abase ourselves, give ourselves in service, make ourselves small with the small and poor with the poor,” he said. (more…)

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People all across Southeast Texas celebrated the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe for a week. Celebrations began Dec. 7 with a pilgrimage from St. Joseph to Our Lady of Guadalupe, Port Arthur. Parishes throughout the diocese, including Cristo Rey, Beaumont, gathered in the early morning hours of Dec. 12, the feast day, for las maƱanitas and Mass. Parishioners placed roses before an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, participated in traditional dances and sang songs during the celebrations. (more…)

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Sisters serve up good eats

sistersbringingfoodThe staff at the Catholic Pastoral Center got a welcome treat Dec. 18 when Dominican Sisters from Our Lady of Fatima convent in Port Arthur stopped by. The sisters brought homemade Vietnamese food for everyone to enjoy as a token of their appreciation for all the hard work the staff does.

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By Carol Glatz Catholic News Service

Pope Francis talks with three men Dec. 17 who live on the streets near the Vatican. As part of a low-key celebration of his 77th birthday, the pope celebrated morning Mass and had breakfast with the men. (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano via Reuters)

Pope Francis talks with three men Dec. 17 who live on the streets near the Vatican. As part of a low-key celebration of his 77th birthday, the pope celebrated morning Mass and had breakfast with the men. (CNS photo/L’Osservatore Romano via Reuters)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — As part of a low-key celebration of his 77th birthday, Pope Francis had breakfast with three people who live on the streets near the Vatican. A small dog, belonging to one of the homeless men, was also on the guest list.

The pope started the day with his usual morning Mass held in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae residence where he lives. (more…)

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By Francis X. Rocca Catholic News Service

Pope greets nuns after visiting St. Martha Dispensary at VaticanVATICAN CITY (CNS) — In another wide-ranging interview with an Italian journalist, Pope Francis denied he was a Marxist but said he took no offense at the label; dismissed the notion of women cardinals; and reflected on Christmas as an occasion of joy, tenderness and hope.

The pope made his remarks in an interview with Andrea Tornielli of the Italian daily La Stampa and the website Vatican Insider. The interview was conducted Dec. 10 and published Dec. 14.

“Marxist ideology is wrong, but I have met many Marxists in my life who are good people, so I don’t feel offended” at being branded one, Pope Francis said. (more…)

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By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service

Pope greets crowd as he arrives to lead general audience in St. Peter's Square at VaticanVATICAN CITY (CNS) — If silence is not one of the sounds associated with Christmas preparations, chances are people will miss an experience of the love and tenderness that is at the heart of the holiday, Pope Francis said.

Celebrating Mass Dec. 12 in the chapel of his residence, Pope Francis offered a reflection on the tone of voice and the endearments God uses to speak to people and communicate his love. (more…)

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