Pope Francis asks for prayers ahead of Vatican abuse summit

Vatican City, Feb 17, 2019 / 04:46 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis Sunday asked for prayers for a meeting of the presidents of bishops’ conferences around the world slated to take place later this week.

During his weekly Angelus address Feb. 17, the pope invited Catholics to pray for the four-day event, which he said he wanted to hold “as an act of strong pastoral responsibility before an urgent challenge of our time.”

The Feb. 21-24 summit on the protection of minors in the Church will focus on the themes of responsibility, accountability, and transparency of bishops. It will also include testimony of victims of abuse, Mass, and a penitential liturgy.

The meeting follows just days after the announcement of the Vatican’s decision to laicize former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who was last week found guilty by the CDF of “solicitation in the Sacrament of Confession, and sins against the Sixth Commandment with minors and with adults, with the aggravating factor of the abuse of power.”

Before the Angelus, Pope Francis spoke about the beatitudes as recounted in the Gospel of Luke. This passage, he said, “invites us to reflect on the profound meaning of having faith, which consists in totally trusting the Lord.”

It is also an invitation to reflect on idols, those things which the world proposes as shortcuts to happiness, “magical solutions to every problem,” making it easy to fall into sins against the first commandment by replacing God with worldly pleasures and comforts, he said.

But Jesus tells us, “blessed the poor, the hungry, the afflicted, the persecuted,” Francis said. And at the same time, he admonishes those who are satisfied and seen well in the eyes of the world, because God alone “can give to our existence that fullness so desired.”

He said: “With these words, strong and incisive, Jesus opens our eyes, shows us with his gaze, beyond appearances, beyond the surface, and teaches us to discern situations with faith.”

It is very important that, like God and with him, people are close to the poor, to the afflicted, he emphasized. “We are happy if we recognize ourselves in need of God.”

Jesus heals the infection of a worldly spirit, helps people to see what really satisfies, gives joy and dignity, meaning and fullness to one’s life, he said.

“May the Virgin Mary help us to listen to this Gospel with open mind and heart, so that it may bear fruit in our lives and become witnesses of happiness that does not disappoint.”

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  1. Let’s add to Vigano’s letters and Muller’s “manifesto” St. Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians… arguably the epistle most challenging to Bergoglio’s pontificate and his team.

    In St. Paul, though he relates sexual immorality to idolatry, selfishness, concupiscence and the pursuit of false happiness etc…sexual immorality is not somehow “lost” as an objective, particular offense.

    For me Bergoglio emerges as a company man retreat director who “guides” considerations of sins (the current crisis) towards “more spiritual” dimensions that are simply evasions. He invariably must rely on some other, “worse sin” to deflect, to achieve some sort of willed, manufactured sham “grace” and sham “peace” while simultaneously promoting some “more spiritual” perception.

    But isn’t this at the core of temptation itself wherein a bad deed invariably requires and finds a good reason?

    • Perhaps if so many bitter Catholics, who continually refuse to put any blame on this crisis on his two predecessors, would get behind Pope Francis and stop this constant diatribe against his person than the Church may get somewhere.

  2. Cardinal Avery Dulles convert from the Presbyterian church was stalwart in his criticism of lack of due process [perhaps a more Protestant cherished premise than Catholic] in priest abuses cases and critical of that element of the Dallas Ch. Presumption of innocence trademark of Am Justice jettisoned some priests ruined as was a good friend. Evidence as such was incredibly minimal based on a youngster’s allegation. If there remains overreach in prosecution of clergy child abuse the opposite is the case for the major abuse issue now devastating the Church, homosexual sacrilege between adult clergy and victimizing of young clerics, seminarians by senior priests frequently prelates. Pope Francis has assigned three Cardinals to moderate the Feb Synod Cupich, Marx, and Tagle further indication that the Synod is pre designed to avoid this major abuse issue. Justice requires the Pontiff take direct control of any such investigation involving prelates the apparent core of the more outstanding abuse issue, simply because canonically only he is authorized to do so and to sanction where warranted. However that seems so far distanced from the Feb Synod and other policy of the Pontiff that the credible allegations made involving McCarrick, Cardinal Kevin Farrell, and others as to render Justice impossible. Again I mention Robert Royal who intends to attend the Synod though not as he said with hope that anything substantial will occur. Except that he hoped the attending Bishops will consequently respond to the crisis. Independent action requested by Cardinal DiNardo [with delegation of authority] had prev been thwarted by Pope Francis and it doesn’t appear that the Pontiff will approve that now. In consideration of the immensity of the crisis affecting clergy and growing disillusionment of laity many leaving the Church an independent concerted effort by Bishops to address and amend the crisis is, at least to this writer justifiable if initiated with if denied-repeated requests for papal permission.

  3. Believe me, I do very much blame JPII and yes Benedict. But how far can anyone take that with one deceased and the other retired. I do not “refuse” to blame JPII in particular not simply for Maciel but for so many appointments.

    It was live from Rome on the balcony, long before any “bitter Catholic” diatribe that Danneels stood there near Bergoglio.

    The average “bitter Catholic” layperson or even priest is not in charge of Cardinals, Archbishops and Bishops…the Pope is.

    So, while we’re at it, we should really blame the “dumb Catholics” in Chile…and the “dumb and bitter Catholics” in Argentina…and not Zanchetta and Bergoglio…for not getting behind Bergoglio?

    Should we “get behind” even our family and friends when they do wrong

    In the case of Bergoglio to “get behind” would mean???? Believe me I pray for him every day.

    It’s bad if I refuse to blame JPII…but I should “get behind” Bergoglio…and refuse to blame him now that he’s alive and reigning Pontiff?

    The goal of to “get somewhere” is not a high standard or any kind of standard really. If it simply means moving forward without true transparency or justice it means nothing.

    Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.

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