Wednesday, October 28, 2015

CCOG Protesting Gala Dinner?

I can understand protesting against abortion or some bill proposed by the Guam Legislature, but this is the first time I have ever heard of anyone protesting against someone's birthday.  This only makes CCOG look insane.  Are they saying that the Archbishop has no right to celebrate his birthday???  The Gala dinner is being held in honor of the Archbishop's 70th birthday.  Why would anyone in their right mind protest against the Archbishop's or even anyone's birthday for that matter.  Abortion....I can understand, but a birthday???  And these are supposed to be people who are pro-life.....protesting against the birth of a person??????   

The Gala dinner is also a fundraiser to help support the RM seminary, the John Paul II seminary and the Archdiocese of Agana.  If CCOG do not want to help support the Church and the seminaries, they do not have to.  No one is even forcing them to attend the Gala dinner.  Their protest is only going to make them look foolish.  

Not only are they trying to destroy the Church, but they obviously are also trying to destroy their island.  Tumon is the heart of the tourist industry, which is Guam's number one economy.  Do they really want to bring some negative impact on Guam's economy?  A protest in front of the Hyatt Hotel would only give the Hyatt and other nearby hotels the wrong impression on the Japanese, Korean, and Russian tourists whose second language is English.  They may get the wrong impression and assume  that they are protesting against the hotel.  Protests in Agana is one thing because the seat of government is located there, but to protest in a village that is the heart of Guam's economy would only leave a negative impact on the tourist industry.  

Why would CCOG want to protest a birthday?   Why are they against the people who want to help the Church and the seminaries?  It is NOT their money.          

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Mass Facing The People

The following was made by an anonymous commenter in my last entry post: 

Tim is absolutely correct about those list of issues. None of them were endorsed by Vatican II, but most people think they were.

Parishes have been conditioned to accept a "banal" liturgy (as Pope Benedict put it). The NCW Eucharist is just the exaggeration (to the point of heresy) of these errors.
The anonymous commenter was referring to Tim Rohr's criticism of the Novus Ordo Mass.  According to Tim Rohr: 
For those who want to know more truth, here's a list of other documents to ask your pastor for:
  • Mass facing the people.
  • Communion in the hand.
  • Saturday night Mass.
  • Communion standing instead of kneeling.
  • Regular use of Eucharistic Ministers.
  • Removal of the high altar in favor of a "table".
  • Pop music in the liturgy.
  • Full use of the vernacular in the liturgy. 
  • "Liturgical dance"(always forbidden)
There are actually documents for some of these things. BUT NONE OF THEM ARE IN VATICAN II. And in fact, when you actually read them, you will be amazed at how these things came about. As an example read Paul VI lament over permitting communion in the hand. He was horrified by the potential for abuse. 
This is my response: 
As one can see, Tim Rohr is also against the regular parish Mass.  While it is true that many of those things mentioned are not found in the 16 documents of Vatican II, some of them were NOT invented AFTER Vatican II.  Let us look at the first item the jungle mentioned: Mass facing the people. 
According to the weblink I provided below (bold is mine): 
Though the priest celebrating Mass facing the people was not mentioned in the Council’s Constitution on the Liturgy (SC), permission was included in the 1964 Instruction Inter oecumenici, in a section on “Designing Churches and Altars to Facilitate the Participation of the People”:............... 
Setting up a new, temporary altar in order to be able to celebrate Mass facing the people is never mentioned. 
Many Catholics think that Mass facing the people was an innovation of Vatican II. However, liturgists had been arguing for decades that it was permitted by the rubrics of the older Missal. 
For example, in 1937 Orate Fratres published a question about an earlier article that mentioned a Mass said by a priest facing the congregation, and asked about the justification for this practice. The response said that it was the current custom in St. Peter’s Basilica and other Roman churches for the priest to face the people because of the location of the altar, and that there were specific rubrics for the Mass instructing the priest what to do in such cases. It concluded: 
Not only, therefore, does no Church law or rubric forbid the construction of altars at which the celebrant faces the people as of old, but the present rubrics, as quoted above, still make provision for Mass celebrated at such an altar. (Orate Fratres, April 18, 1937, p. 280.) 
The Day The Mass Changed Part I

The Day The Mass Changed Part II
As you can see, before Vatican II, it was the current custom in St. Peter's Basilica and other Roman churches to face the congregation because of the location of the altar, and there were already specific rubrics for this particular Mass.  The instruction Inter oecumenici, which mentions a Mass facing the people was written in 1964 and also mentioned in a Vatican document Liturgiam authenticam, (the bold is mine):
 On 4 December 1963 the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council approved the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium.In order to facilitate the implementation of the liturgical renewal desired by the Council Fathers, the Holy See has subsequently published five documents of special importance, each successively numbered as an "Instruction for the Right Application of the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council".  

The first of these, Inter Oecumenici, was issued by the Sacred Congregation of Rites and the "Consilium" for the Implementation of the Liturgy Constitution on 26 September 1964, and contained initial general principles for the orderly carrying out of the liturgical renewal.

According to Inter Oecumenici (bold is mine): 
91. The main altar should preferably be freestanding, to permit walking around it and celebration facing the people. Its location in the place of worship should be truly central so that the attention of the whole congregation naturally focuses there.
Inter Oecumenici 

In conclusion, the Mass facing the people was a practice already taking place in some Roman churches and was spoken about in Vatican II despite that it is not in one of the sixteen documents.  It did not have to be in any of those 16 documents because it was implemented as one of the five "instructions for the Right Application of the Constitution on the Second Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council (See weblink below):

It is clear that the jungle opposes the regular parish Mass by planting seeds of doubt into the Catholic faithful in order to promote the Latin rite Mass. Rohr feels that only the Latin rite Mass shows more reverence for God than any other Catholic Mass. 

Monday, October 26, 2015

Not This Again.....

An anonymous commenter made the following comment: 

Diana, Tim is asking for the document showing that RMS is a corporation sole.

This is my response: 

I had already given my answer.  The fact that Tim does not like my answer is not my problem.  In the first place, Tim is denying the facts.  First of all, Tim 
thinks that St. John's seminary is not a corporation.  According to Tim Rohr:

As for St. John's Seminary in Camarillo, it is a school, and like most schools it has a school board. But it does not have a corporate board of directors because it is not a corporation. It remains the property of the Archbishop of Los Angeles, who is a corporation sole.

St John's Seminary
System, Governing Board or Corporate Structure
Institution is NOT part of a system or corporate entity

The truth is St. John's Seminary IS a corporation.  It is NOT PART of a corporate entity.....that is true.....but it is a corporation.  According to the weblink below (the bold is mine): 

St. John's Seminary In California is a California Domestic Corporation filed on May 20, 1940. The company's filing status is listed as Active and its File Number is C0183931.

The Registered Agent on file for this company is Randolph E. Steiner and is located at Archdiocese Of Los Angeles 3424 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90010. The company's principal address is 5012 Seminary Road, Camarillo, CA 93012.

The company has 1 principal on record. The principal is Jose Horacio Gomez from Los Angeles CA.

Jose Horacio Gomez, the principal, is also the Archbishop of Los Angeles and the corporate sole.  Tim Rohr is also incorrect when he said that St. John Seminary has a school board.  It has a board of directors with five officers, 16 regular members, three observers from the faculty and student body, and one nonvoting ex officio member from the archdiocesan office.  The Archbishop of Los Angeles is corporate sole of the seminary, making the seminary a corporation sole just as the article I provided previously stated.   

Because Tim Rohr mistakenly believed that St. John's Seminary is NOT a corporation (when it is actually a domestic corporation) he concluded that the seminary remains the property of the Archbishop of Los Angeles, the corporate sole. According to Tim Rohr:  But it does not have a corporate board of directors because it is not a corporation. It remains the property of the Archbishop of Los Angeles, who is a corporation sole. 

Now, that we know that Mr. Rohr made the mistake of labeling St. John's Seminary, let us follow his logic.  St. John's seminary has a corporate board of directors because it is a domestic corporation, it remains the property of the Archbishop of Los Angeles, who is a corporate sole and thereby making the St. John's seminary a corporation sole.  In the same way, RMS has a corporate board of directors because it is a nonprofit corporation, it remains the property of the Archbishop of Agana, who is a corporate sole and thereby making RMS a corporation sole.   

Friday, October 23, 2015

Apuron Deserves Praise For Seminaries

The following was published in the Pacific Daily News today:


This Aug. 16 , his excellency Archbishop Anthony Sablan Apuron celebrated the 43th anniversary of his ordination as a capuchin priest.
He was installed as the metropolitan archbishop of the Archdiocese of Agana on May 11, 1986. That is, he has been the spiritual shepherd of the Catholic Church in Guam for the last 29 years — no small feat!

It is obviously clear that when one is at the top of any organization, he/she is also the center of public scrutiny. No matter what you do, it will be scrutinized, and rightly so. There will always be someone who will find faults and shortcomings in every decision and circumstance. However, it will be the results of the decisions taken and the overall effect on the present and future of our Catholic Church in Guam that will eventually render a clear and fair judgment of our archbishop.

As for me, anyone in his right senses should acclaim and applaud Archbishop Apuron for his vision and foresight; actually he should be held in high esteem.

I still remember very vividly when I first came to Guam in the late ’70s and there were four Augustinian priests from Spain in various parishes of Guam. That made it very easy for me to attend Mass because I felt at home; I could understand what the priests were saying. That is not to say that everyone did, though; the language barrier was always there, but with a little bit of good will and lots of faith, all barriers can be conquered.

It was Toto’s priest, Fr. Miguel, the one who married me and my husband in Spain, the summer of 1978. We became very close, together with the other three priests, Fr. Herminio from Malojloj, Fr. Jesus from Maina and Fr. Andres from Mongmong, but eventually they had to leave the island. You see, they were not Guam’s priests; they were on loan from the Philippines.

Archbishop Apuron, seeing that our island was suffering from a chronic lack of priests, took the bold initiative to start our own island seminary, which is no easy feat either. As a matter of fact, it is the dream of most archbishops to establish their own seminaries so as to avoid the shortage of priests.
Many islands around us are suffering from a very serious shortage of priests. Just to mention a case close to us, until last year Saipan did not have one single priest ordained for decades. And no priests mean no Masses, no confessions, no priestly comfort near our deathbeds, no Church presence in our funerals, and parishes having to be shared.

Ever since the Catholic Church was established in Guam, it never had a seminary. To become a priest, one had to go off island. This created a lot of complications, among them the high rate of those who dropped out, not to mention the high cost of travel, tuition and lack of familial support and supervision.

In 1999, our Archbishop said: “Let us make our own seminary.” When he spoke of this initiative to Saint Pope John Paul II, the pope lauded and blessed it. Since Guam did not have the necessary resources to start a seminary, he asked for help to the initiators of the Neocatechumenal Way. And so the first ever seminary started in Guam — first in Tai and two years later, by the grace of God and the help of many local donors and benefactors, the seminary transferred itself to Yona, where it now stands. And our Archbishop made sure that it is an archdiocesan seminary.

A seminary needs an academic framework. Seeing that there was no viable openings for theological studies at UOG , our archbishop said “Let us also create a local specialized theological Institute” and so the Blessed Diego Luis de San Vitores Theological Institute was created.

Aiming at excellence, our archbishop worked hard to have this Institute affiliated to the most important and accredited Catholic University in the world, the Pontifical Lateran University in Rome. This institution is so significant that is known as “The Pope’s University.” The odds seemed impossible for such a small island in the Pacific, but again the drive and persistence of our archbishop paid dividends. The creation of this theological institution ushered the possibility for our archbishop to start another diocesan seminary, the Saint John Paul II Archdiocesan Seminary in Malojloj.
Now other islands have started sending their youths to Guam to be formed as seminarians. Guam has become the envy of these islands, that we can keep running not one, but two seminaries.

Who would have envisioned 29 years ago that Guam would have formed and ordained 17 presbyters in 11 years? Most islands in the Pacific are scrambling to import priests from other places and we in Guam have an abundance of priests.

There will still be someone who will feel justified to criticize our archbishop, nothing to be surprised at. Pope Francis said last year: “All the people whom the Holy Spirit chooses to tell the truth to the people of God suffer persecution.”

Dear Archbishop: May the Holy Spirit continue to guide and enlighten you, and may you get the courage to withstand whatever may be thrown at you.

Mari Flor L. Herrero is president of Lorea Industries.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Marriage Catechumenate

Will the Synod Replace Pre-Cana With ‘Marriage Catechumenate’? 
A number of bishops have proposed that current marriage preparation is not enough, saying the Church needs to provide far more profound formation for marriage.
by PETER JESSERER SMITH 10/19/2015 Comments (15)
NEW YORK — Could marriage preparation by itself become a thing of the past for couples approaching the wedding altar?
The idea of a “marriage catechumenate” — a period of formation for marriage that would cover a period of time both before and after the wedding day — was part of the discussion at the ongoing synod of the family taking place in Rome
“At least 10 times, the topic of a ‘catechumenate for marriage’ came up,” Vatican spokesman Father Thomas Rosica revealed at an Oct. 6 media briefing, describing it as “preparation for marriage, a longer process for marriage, as well as a preparation that takes place in the years right after the [wedding]; it continues.”
Overall, Catholics have a lower rate of divorce than the general population in the United States. The Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) at Georgetown University reports close to one out of three (or 28%) of Catholic marriages end in divorce. But the rate jumps to nearly one out of two marriages ending in divorce for Catholics in “mixed marriages” with Protestant or non-religious spouses.
CARA’s surveys also show that weekly Mass attendance and church involvement correlate strongly with better family outcomes, such as spending time together as a family, eating dinner or playing games as a family, or even praying together. But just one out of five Catholic parents with children at home go to Mass weekly; and just under half of Catholic parents go to Mass once a month or more. The other half of parents go rarely or not at all.
One of the proponents of a “marriage catechumenate” type of formation is Canadian Cardinal Marc Ouellet, who proposed the idea in a book called The Mystery and Sacrament of Love, first published in 2007, but updated later to coincide with the synod discussions. The cardinal noted that, with so many couples poorly formed in marriage, the Church might instead offer them a “prolonged catechumenate” for marriage “if they wish to celebrate their marriage covenant in a Christian way.”
“Marriage catechumenate” is not a technical term. The “catechumenate” is technically a period of formation in the Christian faith for those approaching baptism.
But the concept of a post-baptismal catechumen experience of ongoing catechesis is a reality lived by Catholics who belong to the Neocatechumenal Way.
“It has helped me live out my marriage in a Christian way,” said Andrew Malone, a married father of eight who is part of a “Neocat” community at St. Benedict Joseph Labre parish in Queens, N.Y. While the Neocatechumenal Way has no formal marriage-preparation program, its catechumen-like catechesis involves two key important elements: sound, ongoing formation in the faith and a supportive community at every step of a person’s journey deeper into the faith, so he or she does not get lost or discouraged.
“It’s a lifetime apprenticeship,” said Malone, pointing out that many members in this context grow from “an infantile faith to a more mature faith that is trying to deal with all the difficulties of life.” 

The Nature Of God

The comments in red are from the anonymous commenter while mine is in black.  His/Her comment can be found here.

See, this is the problem in having dialogue with someone who has had their sense systematically dissolved by the Neocatechumenal Way. Follow this closely please.

Why are you bringing the NCW into this discussion.  This is a dialogue we are having about the Jewish and Christian faith, so please stick to the topic of discussion.

"Jesus cannot be both God in flesh (second person of the Trinity) and also not God in flesh"

This does not mean that Jesus can't be both human and divine, Diana. It is a logical formulation. That is to say, if Jesus is truly God in the flesh, then he cannot be not-God-in-the flesh.

When you say "not God in the flesh" that could also imply that He is "not human."  A human is also "not God in the flesh."  The Jewish people is half correct.  They do believe that Jesus is human.  He is indeed a man; therefore, you cannot say that they are totally wrong.  I never said that Jesus is not God nor did I ever say that He is not man.  I said that Jesus has two natures - a human and divine nature. 

It is the same as saying A cannot be not-A. Because it IS A. Do you understand? 

As a Christian, I agree that Jesus is both God and man.  I also understand that the Jews believe that Jesus is a man, but not God.  The question is do you understand that the Jews believe in Jesus' human nature, but not in His divine nature?  Do you understand that a Christian CAN believe that Jesus is God and that the God of Abraham is the one true God simply because the Christian knows that there are three persons in one God?   

You say that "He is BOTH truly man in the flesh and truly God, the divine incarnated in the flesh". Yes, exactly. And if someone were to say He is not God in the flesh, they would be wrong, yes?

I agree that a person who says that Jesus is not God in the flesh is wrong.  But it is also NOT wrong when the Jewish people say that Jesus is a man.  They are only wrong when they say that He is not God.  

So, the Jews say Jesus is not God in the flesh. They are wrong. If they are wrong, then by saying we share their faith, we are saying we also are wrong. I reject that.

And you are wrong for saying that they place their faith on a different god.  The God they believe in is God the Father (the first person in the Trinity). This is the same God whom Jesus prayed to.  If we believe in a Trinitarian God, then we cannot reject the God of Abraham by calling Him a different god for there is only one God.  This one God does not go by the name Jesus ONLY.  He is also God the Father and the Holy Spirit.  

The question really is – is it possible to worship God by rejecting Jesus? I think the answer is no.

Yet, you think you can worship God by rejecting God the Father (the first person in the Trinity).  Jesus said that the way to the Father is through Him.....that is true.  But that is not all He said.  He also said, "The true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks" (See John 4:23).  In this biblical passage, Jesus is clearly speaking of His Father (the first person in the Trinity).

Therefore, whether one worships God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son, or the Holy Spirit...they are still worshiping the SAME one true God.  And if Christians like you cannot recognize that the Jews worship God the Father, then you are no better than the Jews who cannot recognize Jesus Christ, who is the Lord and Messiah. 

Here’s another thought. You will surely agree that from time to time in the Old Testament, some Jews worshipped Baal, or Moloch or others. Were they not Jews at that time? Or were they worshipping the same God as we do by worshipping Baal or those others?

You are correct that SOME Jews went astray and worshipped other gods.  But that is not true for ALL Jews.  Do you honestly think that it was Baal or Moloch who gave Moses the Ten Commandments?  Who spoke to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob?  Was it not God the Father or did you think these Jews were speaking to a different god? 

There is a massive difference in recognising the special election of the Jewish people in ancient times, of recognising the promises made to them, and even acknowledging that Christians share the spiritual heritage of the Jewish people – with saying that that means we worship the same God and share the same faith. Anon goes even further and says that what the Jewish rabbis teach is identical to the magisterium of the Church. These things are too far. For a Catholic, it is heresy to say this.

Pope Francis, Pope John Paul II, and even Pope Benedict XVI all prayed in the synagogues with the Jews because they believe that Jews and Christians worship and believe in the same God....the God of Abraham.  The Pope is the Vicar of Christ; therefore, we listen to what the Pope says.  According to Pope Benedict XVI (the bold is mine): 
9. Christians and Jews share to a great extent a common spiritual patrimony, they pray to the same Lord, they have the same roots, and yet they often remain unknown to each other

As you can see, Pope Benedict XVI said that Jews and Christians pray to the SAME God.  How is it that you forget that Jesus was a Jew?  How is it that you ignore the Popes' encyclicals?  How is it that you are not in communion with the Pope?  So, where is your evidence showing that the Catholic Church or the Pope (the Vicar of Christ) teaches that the Jews and Christians do not worship the same God????

I am convinced that, if this is truly what the NCW teach and believe, then we have our proof that the NCW is truly not Catholic. 

Now, this is where your prejudice is showing.  In my comments and posts, I have always said that Jesus is God, that I believe in the Holy Trinity, and that Jesus has a human and divine nature.  I have shown you the encyclical of Pope Benedict XVI stating that Jews and Christians pray to the SAME God.  And based on these beliefs, which are taught by the Catholic Church, you have labeled the NCW as "not Catholic?"  The one who follows the Pope and is in communion with the Pope is Catholic.  I have shown you written evidence that Pope Benedict (the Vicar of Christ) said that Jews and Christians pray to the SAME God. Where is YOUR evidence saying otherwise? So, who is not Catholic now??? 

The fact that the NCW recognized that Jews worship God the Father shows that we are truly Catholic Christians.  You, on the other hand, are the same as the Jews because you cannot recognize God the Father just as the Jews do not recognize Jesus Christ as their Lord and Messiah. 

The only difference between you and the Jewish people is that you rejected God the Father by calling him another god.  The Jewish people, on the other hand, recognize that Jews and Christians worship the same God...the God of Abraham.  The Jews know that Catholics worship the same God as they do, which is why they are able to pray with us.  They also did not reject Jesus.  They only rejected His divinity, but not His humanity.  So, they are half correct in recognizing Jesus' humanity while you are totally wrong for not even recognizing the God of Abraham.  You are not even half correct.   

 Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio (now Pope Francis), prayed in a Jewish synagogue

Monday, October 19, 2015

Meet The Youngest "Synod Father"

Four-month-old Davide Paloni has captured the hearts of synod attendees and many following the Ordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family. He is the youngest “participant” of this world meeting of bishops and has been present from day one, lovingly attended to by his parents, Massimo and Patrizia.
His parents, originally from Rome, moved to Maastricht, Holland, as a missionary family of the Neocatechumenal Way. They have 12 children — six boys and six girls — of whom Davide is the youngest. Founded in 1964 in Spain by Kiko Arg├╝ello and Carmen Hern├índez, the Neocatechumenal Way is a lay movement whose members Pope Francis has received on different occasions in the Vatican.
In this interview with the Register, Massimo Paloni spoke about Davide’s warm welcome, the Holy Father’s moments with his son and how his son’s presence is promoting the beauty of family life during the synod.
Though Patrizia couldn’t speak to the Register because she was attending to the smallest “synod father,” her husband spoke on her behalf about what this has meant to her, too.
Massimo’s eyes lit up as he spoke about how delighted Pope Francis was to meet Davide, with a big smile on his face and saying, “But I had not seen this little one on the list of synod fathers.” Massimo explained that, afterward, Francis gave a blessing, a little caress, and both he and little Davide were very content.

“You could see how happy he was in his face. We showed the Holy Father the picture of our 12 children, and his smile grew even greater, and the Holy Father was just so welcoming — really.”
“We are so happy. This little boy is doing a great service to the family because he makes present life, the beauty of life. Without speaking, he speaks more than everyone, because he presents to the world, and does so without words, that there is nothing more beautiful than to give life to a child,” his father said.
When asked about his wife and her reaction to all the attention the family is receiving, he replied, “Patrizia is so happy, as I was saying. There has been such a warm welcome, and they have been helping us in everything — and everywhere. We are so grateful; we are being placed in the best conditions for participating as much as possible.”
On what the synod means to them personally, he noted, “We are very grateful to the Holy Father for having invited us to the synod, because this gives us the possibility to render glory to God for the immense works he has done in our lives. So I thank, first of all, Pope Francis, who has given us the chance to be here. It has been such an honor.”
The proud dad also expressed his desire that the family’s presence aids the rediscovery of the beauty of Pope Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae Vitae, which, released in 1968, reaffirmed the Catholic Church’s teaching on the regulation of birth, emphasizing openness to life.
While explaining how the missionary family is dedicated to evangelizing, which led him to leave a management position at Hewlett-Packard, Massimo explained, “We are very normal people, but it is God who did all this in us.”
He added that the synod experience has been touching.

“I don’t know how many blessings he has been given,” he said of his youngest child.
“I was joking with my wife that at least one of our little ones has to become a bishop, with all these different blessings,” he said, jokingly adding, “At the minimum … at least a bishop.”
A fundamental point, according to Massimo, is teaching the faith to their children. He noted how the synod is rightfully reflecting on this. “Just as our parents passed the faith down to us, we pass it on to ours.”
He pointed out how important it is to speak to children about their faith and how it is to be considered in everyday things. “Sometimes, one has to ask: ‘Have you reconciled with your brother? You have to ask forgiveness.’ ... Also, we ask for forgiveness for when maybe we have had stressful moments. Maybe we were stressed that week. ... This is a great gift.”
He stressed how important it is that the faith passed from the parents grows because today’s challenges amid current culture are enormous. To respond to these challenges, there is the need for an adult faith, he stated, which starts from a foundation during youth.
When he received missionary families last March 6, Pope Francis said: “You have received the strength to leave everything and depart for a distant land thanks to a way of Christian initiation,” adding that the lay movement is “a true gift of Providence to the Church of our times.” For this encouragement, Massimo says he is grateful.
On how little Davide is handling the long days in the synod hall, Massimo said, “Fantastic, fantastic, fantastic.”
“The other day, the synod fathers were speaking, and he fell asleep; but out of correctness, we won’t say the name of the [synod] father who was speaking.”
About how Patrizia is enjoying the synod, he noted, “She is so happy and says how much she wants to speak about this beauty of the woman, as being a mother is the highest point of human dignity — for what more is there, than to give life to someone? She said the other day to a cardinal, ‘Today, I feel really fully me, as woman, mother and spouse.’ This is beautiful.”
Based on his observations, the synod fathers have a great understanding of family issues and values. He also rejected reports by the media suggesting that the Holy Father, months ago, was critical toward very large families, saying, “We are so grateful to Pope Francis for having invited us here, us — parents of 12 children.”
Deborah Lubov is a Vatican correspondent, accredited to the Holy See and based in the Vatican, who reports primarily for Zenit News Agency.