Posts Tagged ‘Pope’

Cardinals gather at Vatican, begin election process

Cardinals pray for Conclave

Preparing for the papal election

Preparing Sistine Chapel for Conclave

preparing the Sistine Chapel for the vote

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I have been sick so I’m posting this video. I will try to make it around to your blogs later today or tomorrow. God Bless.

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imagesOver the weekend as I was checking through my emails I read about a saint, a Roman layman who entered the city from his farm one day just as the clergy and people were getting ready to elect a new pope. According to a historian named Eusebius, a dove flew in and settled in on the head of this man. The clergy and laity saw this as a sign so they united their votes, and unanimously chose this Roman layman to be the next pope. This man’s name is St. Fabian.  I found this account of how Fabian was elected pope very interesting and inspiring.  It inspired me how the clergy and laity saw the dove as a sign from God, listened to Him, and showed their tremendous faithfulness in believing that God was telling them that Fabian was chosen to be the next pope. This really is fascinating to me.

I wasn’t able to find anymore on Fabian then what was in my email. Here is a little bit on his life:

He led the Church for 14 years and died a martyr’s death during the persecution of Decius in 250 A.D.. St. Cyprian wrote to his successor that Fabian was an “incomparable” man whose glory in death matched the holiness and purity of his life.

In the catacombs of St. Callistus, the stone that covered Fabian’s grave may still be seen, broken into four pieces, bearing the Greek words, “Fabian, bishop, martyr.”

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I recently became aware of a situation in the Church’s past where a Pope used a type of coercion to make sure a young child would be raised Catholic.  The circumstances ultimately led to the dissolution of the Papal States.  The whole scenario is bizarre.  A maid working for a Jewish family supposedly secretly had the child baptized because he was ill and close to death.  When the child recovered, the maid reported the baptism.  There was a law in effect that a Catholic child could not be raised by non-Catholics.    The Pope was so concerned for the child’s eternal soul that he chose to do a deplorable temporal act, what others believed to be a criminal act (what I would consider to be criminal), because the Pope believed that the young child’s soul would be in danger if after having been baptized he wasn’t raised to be a Catholic Christian.  Let’s just say I was totally shocked when I read about this event and to find out it was true was scandalous and even more appalling to me.

It is because of this type of coercive behavior that I believe that the installation of Dignitatis Humanae during Vatican II was not only a good thing but a necessity for the Catholic Church.

Here is the first paragraph of Dignitatis Humanae:

1. A sense of the dignity of the human person has been impressing itself more and more deeply on the consciousness of contemporary man,(1) and the demand is increasingly made that men should act on their own judgment, enjoying and making use of a responsible freedom, not driven by coercion but motivated by a sense of duty. The demand is likewise made that constitutional limits should be set to the powers of government, in order that there may be no encroachment on the rightful freedom of the person and of associations. This demand for freedom in human society chiefly regards the quest for the values proper to the human spirit. It regards, in the first place, the free exercise of religion in society. This Vatican Council takes careful note of these desires in the minds of men. It proposes to declare them to be greatly in accord with truth and justice. To this end, it searches into the sacred tradition and doctrine of the Church-the treasury out of which the Church continually brings forth new things that are in harmony with the things that are old.

This text emphasizes freedom, a responsible freedom that the human spirit must choose without coercion.


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