Showing posts with label Pope Benedict. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Pope Benedict. Show all posts

Thursday

MDN: Pope's Speech in World Youth Day in Australia

How can you imagine people especially the youth around the world gathered together for a common purpose and interest?? The World Youth Day is such a very amazing event especially for the youth around the world. The WYD in Austria is participated by more than 200,000 participants from over 150 countries around the world.

Pope Benedict XVI gestures during a harbor cruise in Sydney,
Thursday, July 17, 2008. courtesy of AP photo

I was caught by Pope Benedict XVI speech regarding world's resources saying that it is being squandered by people. A very sad story that is happening now around the world. Do people really care for the environment and the Mother Earth?? I can only say what we are doing to our nature is slowly coming back to us. How I just wish that people will contribute in his own simple way the caring of our Mother Nature.

Just look around what is happening to the world for the past days, months and even years....flood in the Philippines, earthquake in China, war in the Iraq, and some more other calamities that are happening around the world.

How I just wish that in our very own simple way, I hope that we try to take care of Mother earth..just like maybe saving water, turning off equipments and appliances esp. when not in use, throwing and disposing of garbage in a right way and a lot more things to conserve nature..If and only everyone will contribute in his very simple way the conservation of nature, I believed this earth will be a happy place to live-in...

I am sharing to you the full story of Pope's speech below..I hope we will be vigilant enough to know and understand his messages to the people.

Have a great day to all!! God bless us all!!

Pope Says world's resources being squandered

By ROHAN SULLIVAN, Associated Press Writer- July 17,2008

SYDNEY, Australia - The world's natural resources are being squandered in the pursuit of "insatiable consumption," Pope Benedict XVI said Thursday in a speech urging followers to care more for the environment and reconnect with the principle of peace.

Benedict, speaking to more than 200,000 pilgrims gathered for the Roman Catholic church's youth festival, expanded on a theme that has led him to be dubbed "the green pope." The crowd, massed on a disused wharf in Australia's largest city, regularly erupted in cheers that gave the event the feel of a sporting event.

"Some of you come from island nations whose very existence is threatened by rising water levels; others from nations suffering the effects of devastating drought," the pope said, referring to global warming.

He noted that during his more than 20-hour flight from Rome to Sydney he had a bird's eye view of a vast swath of the world that inspired awe and introspection.

"Perhaps reluctantly we come to acknowledge that there are also scars which mark the surface of our earth: erosion, deforestation, the squandering of the world's mineral and ocean resources in order to fuel an insatiable consumption," he said.

Types of "poison" are afflicting the world's social environment, he said, such as substance abuse, along with the exaltation of violence and sexual degradation, for which he blamed television and the Internet.

"The concerns for nonviolence, sustainable development, justice and peace, and care for our environment are of vital importance for humanity," Benedict told the crowd.

Benedict's speech Thursday was his first major appearance at the festival and one of the set piece events of his 10-day trip. The pontiff emerged from three days at a secluded vacation spot to engage in a busy round of events for World Youth Day, an inaccurately-named six-day festival held every few years that is designed to inspire a new generation of Roman Catholics.

He received a series of welcomes: an official one from Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, a traditional one from pelt-clad Aboriginal dancers, and finally a rapturous one from pilgrims who journeyed to Sydney from more than 160 countries to attend.

The pope toured Sydney's famous harbor by boat, cruising past the city's twin landmarks — the white-shelled opera house and the bridge nicknamed "the coathanger" because of its shape.

At the ceremony with Rudd, Benedict praised the Australian government for its "courageous" apology to the country's indigenous Aborigines for past injustices, saying it offered hope to all disadvantaged peoples who are seeking reconciliation.

Aborigines are an often-marginalized minority of about 450,000 in Australia's population of 21 million. They are the country's poorest group, with the highest rates of unemployment, illiteracy, incarceration and alcohol abuse, and a life expectancy 17 years shorter than other Australians.

In February, Rudd formally apologized to Aborigines as one of his first official acts after taking power, and made closing the gap between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians a priority of his government.

Benedict's comments about Aborigines were not the first time a pope has recognized indigenous peoples.

In 2001, John Paul II issued a formal apology to the indigenous peoples of Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific islands for injustices perpetrated by Catholic missionaries.

Crowds of people thronged Sydney streets Thursday evening, shutting down a large part of downtown during rush hour, as Benedict drove in the popemobile through the city. Security was tight, with thousands of police deployed and dark-suited security guards walking alongside the pope's vehicle.

source: yahoo news

Friday

After intimate meeting, pope turns to global audience

By ERIC GORSKI, AP Religion Writer

UNITED NATIONS - Pope Benedict XVI told diplomats at the United Nations on Friday that respect for human rights was the key to solving many of the world's problems, while cautioning that international cooperation was threatened by "the decisions of a small number."

The pontiff, addressing the U.N. General Assembly on his first papal trip to the U.S., said the organization's work is vital. But he raised concerns that power is concentrated among just handful of players.

"Multilateral consensus," he said, speaking in French, "continues to be in crisis because it is still subordinated to the decisions of a small number."

The world's problems call for collective interventions by the international community, he said.

"The promotion of human rights remains the most effective strategy for eliminating inequalities between countries and social groups, and increasing security," the pope said.

Benedict, only the third pope to address the United Nations, made the remarks after three dramatic days in which he repeatedly discussed America's clergy sexual abuse scandal.

The U.N. setting contrasted dramatically with the intimacy of a meeting Thursday, at which Benedict prayed with weeping victims of childhood sexual abuse by priests.

The pope took an early morning flight from the nation's capital to New York City. He was greeted by New York Cardinal Edward Egan and taken to a helicopter for the ride into Manhattan.

Across from the U.N., several hundred supporters, many of them Hispanic, gathered behind metal police barricades.

"Benedetto!" many shouted in Spanish.

A group of New Jersey Catholics held up a banner for the German-born pope that combined German — "Willkommen Pope Benedict XVI" — and English sentiments: "You Rock!"

A small anti-pope contingent included a group calling itself Forum for Protection of Religious Pluralism.

Financial consultant Padmanabh Rao, a Hindu from Woodbridge, N.J., complained that the Vatican is converting people in India to Catholicism.

Queens contractor William Salazar, who identified himself as a Navajo Indian, said Catholic priests "came to America and they killed our children. Now the pope is sending priests all over the world who are raping our children."

Before the pontiff's speech, Benedict and Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met alone for 15 minutes.

The pope's New York visit will also include a visit to ground zero, site of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, and a Mass at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. Later Friday, he was to visit a synagogue and meet with leaders of other Christian denominations.

It remains to be seen whether Benedict will continue to talk about the sexual abuse crisis. He has been widely expected to broach the subject on Saturday when he celebrates Mass for priests, deacons and members of religious orders at St. Patrick's Cathedral in Manhattan.

On Thursday, Benedict met privately with abuse victims between an open-air Mass at Nationals Park and a meeting with Catholic educators.

The Rev. Federico Lombardi, a papal spokesman, said that Benedict and Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley met with a group of five or six abuse victims for about 25 minutes, offering them encouragement and hope. The group from O'Malley's archdiocese were all adults, men and women, who had been molested when they were minors. Each spoke privately with the pope and the whole group prayed together.

One of the victims, Bernie McDaid, told The Associated Press that he shook the pope's hand, told him he was an altar boy and had been abused by a priest in the sacristy of his parish. The abuse, he told Benedict, was not only sexual but spiritual.

"I said, 'Holy Father, you need to know you have a cancer in your flock and I hope you will do something for this problem; you have to fix this,'" McDaid said. "He looked down at the floor and back at me, like, 'I know what you mean.' He took it in emotionally. We looked eye to eye."

Olan Horne, another Boston-area victim who prayed and talked with Benedict, told the AP, "I believe we turned the pope's head a little in the right direction."

Both men have worked with church officials in the aftermath of the crisis, and met with a new office established by U.S. bishops in response to the scandal.

Their sentiments were echoed by O'Malley, who called the meeting "a very moving experience for all who participated."

Benedict's address to the presidents of Catholic colleges and universities was among the most anticipated of his trip, but was overshadowed by the meeting with victims.

The pope, a former academic, said academic freedom has "great value" for the schools, but does not justify promoting positions that violate the Catholic faith.

___

Associated Press Writer Verena Dobnik contributed to this report.

source: yahoo news

Thursday

Pope says U.S. society can undermine Catholic faith

By Tom Heneghan, Religion Editor Wed Apr 16, 9:37 PM ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Pope Benedict tempered his praise for American religious tolerance on Wednesday with a warning that U.S. society can quietly undermine Catholicism by reducing all faiths to a lowest common denominator.

Addressing the nation's Catholic bishops, the German-born pope said the U.S. Church could not drop its guard against relativism just because faith plays a larger part in public life in the United States than it does in more secularized Europe.

A strong individualist streak in American culture leads some Catholics "to pick and choose," following Church doctrines they like and ignoring others, he said during a long speech on challenges facing Roman Catholicism in the United States.

"It is not enough to count on this traditional religiosity and go about business as usual, even as its foundations are being slowly undermined," he warned the bishops gathered at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington.

The "American brand of secularism," he said, "can subtly reduce religious belief to a lowest common denominator."

Countering growing secularization in Europe has been a main theme of Benedict's papacy. His comments on the United States have mostly been positive remarks on how it has separated church and state without driving religion from the public sphere.

The speech to nine U.S. cardinals and 350 bishops, his main opportunity to speak to leaders of his Church in America, revealed a deeper level of concern Benedict has about a superficial religiosity sometimes called "civil religion."

"Faith becomes a passive acceptance that certain things 'out there' are true, but without practical relevance for everyday life," he said. "The result is a growing separation of faith from life, living 'as if God did not exist."'

"We have seen this emerge in an acute way in the scandal given by Catholics who promote an alleged right to abortion."

"PREACHING LOST ITS SALT?"

Another sign is the continued drift of Catholics away from the Church, he said. According to a recent study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, about 24 percent of Americans are Catholics but a further 10 percent are ex-Catholics.

"Do people today find it difficult to encounter God in our churches?" Benedict asked. "Has our preaching lost its salt?"

The pope said part of the problem was that American Catholics had left the "ghetto" of Catholic culture that reinforced religious practice among the immigrant communities that long made up the bulk of the faithful.

Those communities have assimilated in recent decades into the pluralist mainstream of this mostly Protestant society, where other faiths and fads compete for people's attention.

"The Church in America," Benedict said, "is faced with the challenge of recapturing the Catholic vision of reality and presenting it, in an engaging and imaginative way, to a society which markets any number of recipes for human fulfillment."

A study issued just before Benedict's visit showed many U.S. Catholics -- especially younger ones -- had only a shallow understanding of their faith.

While the Church teaches that the Eucharist is clearly the most important of its sacraments, only 25 percent of those polled thought so, according to the study by the Center for Applied Research into the Apostolate at Georgetown University.

Some 39 percent chose baptism as the most important sacrament and 26 percent picked marriage.

(Editing by Peter Cooney)

(For more on religion, see the Reuters religion blog FaithWorld at http://blogs.reuters.com/faithworld)

source: http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080417/us_nm/pope_usa_secularism_dc