LIVE BROADCAST: Presentation of the Final Message of the Synod on the Family
October 18, 2014. Presentation of the Final Message of the Synod on the Family.
The topic of the second part of the Synod on the Family has been announced
October 13, 2014. The new topic for the second part of the Synod on the Family will be "The vocation and the mission of the family within the Church and in the contemporary world.”
This second part will take place in Rome from October 4-25, 2015. The issues dealt with during the first part of the Synod, which concludes this week, will be further discussed in this second part.
Priest kidnapped in Syria is freed
October 9, 2014. Fr. Hassan Jallouf, 62, has been freed and taken to a convent in Knayeh, Syria. He was kidnapped on the evening of October 5th. Of the 20 other Christians kidnapped that night, 4 women were also freed.
Pope Francis names new bishops for Italy, Spain & Brazil
October 8, 2014. Pope Francis has named several new bishops today. The Pope named Archbishop Celso Morga Iruzubieta as Coadjutor Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Mérida-Badajoz (Spain). As of now, Archbishop Morga Iruzubieta was secretary of the Congregation for the Clergy.
He also named Bishop Fausto Tardelli, from the diocese of San Miniato, as bishop of the Diocese of Pistoia (Italy). Finally, the Pope named a new auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Goiânia (Brazil). He nominated Fr. Levi Bonatto, a priest from the personal prelature of Opus Dei.
Pastor and 20 Christians kidnapped in Syria
October 7, 2014. A pastor and roughly 20 Christians were kidnapped in Knayeh, Syria on the evening of October 5th. Fr. Hassan Jallouf, a 62 year old Franciscan, belongs to the Custody of the Holy Land. Local sources said that a group of armed members of Islamic militant group, Jahbat Al-Nusra, are responsible for the kidnapping.
All cardinals to meet at the Vatican on October 20
October 7, 2014. Pope Francis convoked a Consistory at the Vatican on October 20. All the cardinals will discuss the situation of Chistians in Middle East, especially of those suffering continuous attacks of ISIS.
Pope Francis will travel to France in 2015
October 7, 2014.Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi has announced that Pope Francis will visit France in 2015.
During his visit to the Vatican in January, French President Francois Hollande, formally invited the Pope to France. The mayor of Lourdes also extended an invitation.
It is likely that he will visit Lisieux, home of one of the Pope's favorite saints, St. Therese.
The last Pontiff to visit France was Benedict XVI in 2008.
Pope Francis: "Happy families are essential for society"
October 3, 2014. Pope Francis asked Christians to pray for the upcoming Synod on the Family via Twitter. He also said that "happy families are essential for society."
There are more than 750,000 members of religious congregations around the world. Since 1997, the World Day for Consecrated Life honors them for spreading the Church's message across the globe.
Javier is one of these members. He's 33 years old, from Spain, and since the age of 19, he's been a member of the Society of Mary.
"When I was 18, I realized that something wasn't right. You're missing something. You begin to feel a need, to search for the happiness I think all of us need. Now, I look back and say: 'Well, I don't know how I was able to do that.' I met the Marianists and I began to feel that, that could be my life.”
Bob is also a Marianist brother. He's 37 years old, and studied at one of the Order's universities. He decided to study there for basic reasons: The engineering program had a good reputation. At that point, he hadn't considered a consecrated life. At the time, he worked as as math professor, he bought a house, a car and even started dating. He hadn't noticed anything different, but now looking back, he says it's there that the seed of consecrated life was planted.
"When I talked about it with my girlfriend, I was nervous. Let's just put it that way. But, believe it or not several of my friends and family, said they weren't that surprised. I really think they saw something in me, that maybe I hadn't seen yet.”
The journey has been quite long. Individually they spent one year in the pre-novitiate stage, two as novices, and then they took their first and second vows. After eight years they finally took their final vows. But despite the wait, both feel that consecrated life was the right choice.
"When someone looks back, they realize that everything makes sense. Even the most difficult moments, the hardest ones. It all makes sense, it's logical. Consecrated life shows that its possible to be happy; it's very possible to be happy living out the Gospel.”
"I will also encourage people, if they think, like I did, that, that isn't just for them... we have to believe that God is the God of surprises. And if we listen to God's voice, we never know where he's gonna take us. I talk about my vocation as an adventure, because I can wake up every morning and think: 'what's gonna happen today?' And it helps when I remember that God is a part of this.”
Javier and Bob said living a consecrated life is not an old-fashioned vocation, because searching for happiness never gets old.