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Ask a Marian
By Fr. Joseph Roesch, MIC (Jun 18, 2012)
The following is from the Summer 2012 issue of Marian Helper magazine. Order a free copy.
Question: Why has Pope Benedict XVI declared a Year of Faith in the Church?
Answer: Pope Benedict chose the theme of faith because he wants us to better understand and live our faith, something that has been close to his heart since the beginning of his pontificate. He sees the lack of faith, especially among Christians, as a major cause for many of the problems that we face today. As Jesus Himself asked in the Gospel, "When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?" (Lk 18:8).
In writing about the Year of Faith, the Pope uses the image of a door that "is always open for us." We have been invited to cross the threshold to a life of communion with God by entering into His Church. Through our Baptism, we have undertaken a lifelong journey toward God. The foundation of our faith is encountering the Risen Christ, the one who gives meaning to our lives.
Citing the integral link between faith and charity, the Holy Father says the year "will also be a good opportunity to intensify the witness of charity." Such a witness includes performing works of mercy.
The Year of Faith will begin on Oct. 11, 2012, to mark the 50th Anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council and the 20th Anniversary of the promulgation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. During the year, there will be many events to foster our encounter with the Lord. Among them will be a World Synod of Bishops in Rome in October 2012 to discuss "The New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith" and a World Youth Day in Brazil in July 2013. The year will conclude in November 2013 on the feast of Christ the King.
Let us call upon the Holy Spirit to pour out many graces on the Church during this special year, so that our faith can be strengthened.
Father Joe Roesch, MIC, welcomes your questions. Send them to: Ask a Marian, Editorial, Eden Hill, Stockbridge, MA 01263, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.