VATICAN INSIDER CELEBRATES FOOD FOR THE POOR – ARCHBISHOP CHAPUT: A LITTLE WISDOM FROM BERNARD – IN BRIEF

Today is the feast of Pope St. John Paul II! On this day in 1978, October 22, his papacy of almost 27 years began and the world was forever changed. 1978 – the Year of Three Popes – Paul VI, John Paul (the Roman numeral I was added to his name only after John Paul II chose that name). The former Cardinal Karol Wojtyla, whom many today call St. John Paul the Great, had been elected 6 days earlier following the premature death of his predecessor, John Paul I, after 33 days of papacy. Saint John Paul II | Franciscan Media

Vatican Youtube Oct 22, 1978 – 22 October 1978: the Pontificate of John Paul II begins – YouTube

VATICAN INSIDER CELEBRATES FOOD FOR THE POOR

This week, in the interview segment of Vatican Insider, I bring you a fascinating conversation I had with Alvaro Pereira and Fr. Robert White as they tell us more about the amazing program they work for and with, Food for the Poor – how and when it was founded, how FFTP works to help the poor, not just through providing food but through building homes, teaching people how to earn a living and much more!   Some astonishing numbers will leave you speechless. The more you hear, the more you’ll want to become involved!

Full disclosure for a personal moment: I was living in California from 1986 to 1990 and first met Fr. Bob in the mid-1980s when, as a San Diego priest, he was named pastor of a new parish, St. Thomas More in Vista, California. There was no church but there were a lot of Catholics, including my parents and I, who were anxious for this new church to be a reality. Sunday Mass for years was celebrated in the chapel of neighboring Oceanside’s Eternal Hills mortuary. When the parish hall and multi-purpose rooms were built, Mass was held in the auditorium.

Dinner at La Vittoria!

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Weekday Masses on Tuesdays and Thursdays were held for several years in parishioners’ homes. We usually stayed a bit after Mass when, fortified by coffee and sweets and often wonderful home-grown fruit, we would talk about building the church, how to raise funds and who in the parish was sick and needed our help and prayers. It was an extraordinarily special time for all of us and made us feel like the first Christians did when there were no formal churches and people met in the homes of wealthier Christians.

Fr. Bob and I recently had a reunion in Rome when he and Alvaro, representing Food for the Poor, were attending a Vatican conference. This was the first time we’d seen each other since 1993!

Website: www.foodforthepoor.org

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ARCHBISHOP CHAPUT: A LITTLE WISDOM FROM BERNARD

by Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap. 10 . 21 . 21

(First Things) Bernard of Clairvaux, the great 12th-century saint and Doctor of the Church who renewed the Western monastic tradition, once warned that “The most grievous danger for any pope lies in the fact that, encompassed as he is by flatterers, he never hears the truth about his own person and ends by not wishing to hear it.”

Every pontificate has its courtiers. The current one is no exception; quite the opposite. Thus, St. Bernard’s words came easily to mind as I read a recent Austen Ivereigh article for America magazine. In it, Ivereigh claimed that “over the last eight years, a powerful U.S.-based media conglomerate has used its formidable wealth and power to turn a large portion of the people of God against Rome and its current occupant. And for good measure, against key reforms of the Second Vatican Council.”

Frightening stuff; so where might this muscular wickedness spring from: Comcast? Facebook? George Soros’s Open Society Foundations? No. Today’s spirit of schism—Mr. Ivereigh describes it as “the diabolos, and calling it something else is just putting lipstick on a pig”—is the work of those iniquitous devils at . . . EWTN. Yes, that’s the network founded by that arch-troublemaker and woman religious, Mother Angelica, and funded largely by tens of thousands of small donations from ordinary, faithful Catholic individuals and families.

To be fair, Ivereigh’s article simply elaborates on comments that Pope Francis made recently to Jesuits in Slovakia. Pope Francis didn’t name the offending media organization, but as journalists quickly confirmed, he meant EWTN. It’s surprising to hear any pope be so publicly and personally sensitive to perceived ill will from a few commentators at a modest network (by secular standards) based on another continent. Conflict, a lot of it, both within and beyond the Church, comes with the job of every bishop. The bishop of Rome is not excused from that unhappy burden. And EWTN’s Raymond Arroyo, whom Ivereigh seems to regard as a special tool of the diabolos, does not pose quite the same fearsome threat to the Church as, say, China’s Xi Jinping. Or significant figures in America’s current leadership.

Mr. Ivereigh is right to see mean-spirited ecclesial criticism from anyone as poisonous to the unity of the Church. But he might take his own words to heart in examining some of his own past work.  Moreover, not all criticism in a family is ill-intended or disloyal or inaccurate. Some anger, even anger at legitimate authority, is righteous. The virtue of Christian obedience is rooted in speaking the truth—with love, but frankly and firmly—and true religion has nothing to do with a posture of servility.

As an EWTN board member for many years before retiring, I’m well acquainted with the network’s shortcomings. It can always improve. But it has managed to serve the gospel for decades now with skill and endurance where many others have failed. Thus, it’s hard to read critics of the network without also sniffing their peculiar cologne of faux piety, jealousy, and resentment. EWTN’s achievements deserve praise and warrant pride. I admire the dedication of its leaders and staff. I’m grateful for the network’s service to the Word of God. And any suggestion that EWTN is unfaithful to the Church, the Second Vatican Council, or the Holy See is simply vindictive and false.

TO CONTINUE READING _ A Little Wisdom From Bernard | Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap. | First Things

IN BRIEF

AN UPDATE ON PAOLO, POPE FRANCIS AND A ZUCCHETTO: In my report Wednesday on the 10-year old disabled boy who paid an impromptu visit to Pope Francis on the stage area of the Paul VI Hall at the general audience, I noted how very much he seemed to want a papal skull cap or zucchetto but saw no evidence that he actually received one. I had dinner that night with a priest friend from Chicago who was at the audience and he gave me an update. It seems that when the general audience catechesis was over, a “spare” zucchetto was found and given to Paolo who jumped for joy and happily wore it for the rest of the morning. It seems there is always a zucchetto or two on reserve so one was given to Paolo. Both Paolo and his mother later had a chance to speak to the Holy Father.

PAPAL LITURGIES FOR NOVEMBER – The Vatican today posted liturgies on the papal calendar for the month of November, While no mention was made of traditional activities for the Holy Father on the Vatican holy days and holidays of November 1, All Saints, and November 2, All Souls, the schedule included the following: Thursday November 4 St. Peter’s Basilica Altar of the Chair, Holy Mass for the deceased Cardinals and Bishops during the year; Friday, November 5, Mass at 10:30 at Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Rome; Sunday, November 14, 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time, St. Peter’s Basilica, 10.00 Holy Mass,