Monday, July 7, 2008

Pauline Year

On June 28th, Pope Benedict XVI inaugurated the Pauline Year, which which come to an end on June 19th, 2009, to commemorate the two-thousandth anniversary of his birth.

This "Pauling Year," the Pope explained, "will take place in a special way in Rome," the city where the basilica dedicated to the Apostle of the Gentiles is located, under whose main altar his remains are contained. For this Pauline Year a number of liturgical and cultural events, which will be announced at a later date, are planned in this great church and its surroundings.

"Likewise, in every part of the world, analogous initiatives can be realised in the
Dioceses, Sanctuaries and places of worship of Religious Institutes, of study, or of assistance,
that bear the name of St Paul or that is inspired by his figure and his teachings," Benedict XVI affirmed.

If you would like more details, you can visit the Anno Paulino Website.

Italian Teen One Step Closer to Sainthood

Venerable Chiara Badano

.- The Congregation for the Causes of the Saints issued a decree last week recognizing the heroic virtues of Chiara “Luce” Badano, a young Italian girl who belonged to the Focolare Movement and died in 1990 at the age of 18.

The new “Venerable” Chiara was born in Sassello, Liguria, on October 29, 1971, to the joy of her parents, truck driver Ruggero Badano, and Maria Teresa Caviglia, who waited eleven years to have a child.

“Amidst our great joy, we understood immediately that she was not only our daughter but also a daughter of God,” her mother said according to a biography published by Focolare.

Since childhood, Chiara showed a deep love for God and a strong but docile character. She was joyful, kind and very active.

At the age of nine she joined the Focolare Movement. In 1985 Chiara moved to Savona to continue her education, and according to her biographers, “She had a difficult time despite her great efforts. She was held back one year and this made her suffer greatly.”

Chiara had many friends and loved sports, especially tennis, swimming and hiking. She dreamed of being a flight attendant and enjoyed dancing and singing. However, at the age of 16 she decided to pursue the consecrated life.

She had a close relationship with the foundress of the Focolare, Chiara Lubich, who gave her the name, “Luce.”

Soon afterwards she was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in her shoulder. She began intense chemotherapy while she continued her daily life with the same joy and faith.

This joy and faith moved Chiara to give all of her savings to a friend who was going to be a missionary in Africa, even though she was ill.

Despite the efforts by doctors, her illness progressed rapidly and she lost the use of her legs. “If I had to choose between walking or going to heaven I’d choose heaven,” she told her family.

In July of 1989 she suffered severe hemorrhaging and her death appeared imminent. She told her parents, “Don’t cry for me. I am going to Jesus. At my funeral I don’t want people to cry, but rather to sing with all their voices.”

On her deathbed, Chiara prayed for the strength to fulfill God’s will. “I don’t ask Jesus to come for me to bring me to heaven; I don’t want to give him the impression that I don’t want to suffer anymore,” she said. She asked her mother to help her prepare for her funeral, or her “wedding feast,” as she called it.

She gave her mother detailed instructions about how she should be dressed, the music, the flowers, the hymns and the readings. She asked her mother to repeat the words, “Now Chiara, go to Jesus.”

She died on October 7, 1990, surrounded by her parents. Her friends were gathered outside the door. Her final words were, “Ciao. Be happy because I am.”

Some two thousand people attended her funeral.

Chiara’s cause for beatification was opened in 1999 by Bishop Livio Maritano, the bishop of Acqui at the time. He said his decision was based on Chiara’s “way of living, especially the extraordinary example she gave during the last stage of her life.” “I had no doubt about promoting her cause,” the bishop said.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Armonizar Collection

Did you know that Peru has one of the highest indexes of children with cleft palates in the world? YOU can do a lot for these children. Help them in the collection that will take place on Saturday, June 21st.

Come to the Center at 9:00 am this Saturday to participate in the Armonizar Collection!!!

Armonizar is an association that was founded in Peru in 1997 to address the urgent need of many children and families for crucial medical attention. We want to promote real human progress by creating physical, psychological, and spiritual harmony in these children that suffer from numerous congenital deformities, diseases, and disabilities.

Armonizar makes up a part of the Christian Life Movement and is served by professionals and volunteers from numerous concentrations.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Takillakta Comes to the Congress in Quebec

Takillakta, the musical group of the Sodalite Family, was invited to participate in the 49th International Eucharistic Congress that will take place in Quebec, Canada. Takillakkta was the only Spanish-language catholic musical group involved.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Heroic Polish athlete dies to save life of unborn child

.- Thousands of Poles lined up to say their final goodbyes to Agata Mroz, a young volleyball star who died on June 4 after postponing a bone marrow transplant in order to allow her daughter to be born.

At the age of 17, Agata was diagnosed with leukemia. She battled the disease and ended up becoming one of the top athletes in Poland, winning the European Volleyball Championship twice with her country’s team. She joined the professional volleyball team CAV in Murcia, Spain, where she also led the team to title wins.

Her struggle against leukemia forced her to take a sabbatical year during which she received many blood transfusions. Thousands of Poles donated blood for her cause. On June 9, 2007, she married Jacek Olszewski. She was too weak to travel away for a honeymoon but soon afterwards she became pregnant. A few weeks later, doctors discovered her cancer had progressed. She decided to postpone a bone marrow transplant until after the baby’s birth, set for April 4.

Agata told the Polish daily Dziennik that she never regretted her pregnancy. “The news I was going to be a mother made me feel fortunate. I was so happy because I would know what it was like to be a mother and I would give my husband something good from myself,” she said.

Agata underwent the transplant after the birth but she contracted a deadly infection. Her funeral Mass was celebrated in the same church that she was married in one year earlier to the day. She was remembered for her heroism and her decision to confront her illness.

Bishop Marian Florczyk of Kielce presided at the Mass and said Agata gave Poland a witness of “love, motherhood, the desire to give life and the heroic love for an unborn child.”

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Happy Fathers' Day

To all fathers, happy Fathers' Day. We present this short video, that in addition to presenting the relationship between a father and his son, can elevate our gaze to the relationship that God has with us, a relationship of love to the extreme.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

We Are the Catholic Church

In the month in which we celebrate the day of the Holy Father on the 29th, we present a video: "We Are the Catholic Church," which briefly describes the support that the Catholic Church has given to the world. Founded by our very Lord Jesus on the rock St. Peter, currently Pope Benedict XVI.