(Vatican Radio/VIS) This morning in the Vatican Apostolic Palace, the Holy Father received in audience Mr. Rafael Correa Delgado, president of the Republic of Ecuador. President Correa then met with the Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, S.D.B., accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.
During the talks, which were held in an atmosphere of cordiality, the Catholic Church's significant contribution in the various sectors of the country's social life and the importance of sincere and permanent dialogue between the Church and the State to address fundamental societal challenges were discussed.
Then, the centrality of social justice and the value of solidarity and subsidiarity in seeking the common good were emphasized. Finally, issues regarding current events in the region, respect for indigenous peoples and their culture, as well as environmental protection were treated.
(Vatican Radio) The Word of God is to be welcomed with humility because it is the word of love: thus – and only thus – may it penetrate hearts and change lives. This was the essence of the remarks Pope Francis made at Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae chapel on Friday morning, in the presence of employees and staff members from the Vatican Typography – the printing press – and the L'Osservatore Romano newspaper.
The Conversion of St. Paul and the discourse of Jesus in the synagogue of Capernaum were the biblical readings of the day, and were at the centre of the Pope’s homily, which focused on Jesus as He speaks: speaking to Saul who had been persecuting Him; to Ananias, called to accept Saul; to the teachers of the law, saying that anyone who does not eat His flesh and drink His blood will not be saved. The Pope said Jesus’ voice, “passes through our mind and goes to the heart, for Jesus seeks our conversion.” Paul and Ananias respond with puzzlement, but with an open heart. The teachers of the law respond in another way, arguing among themselves and challenging the hard words of Jesus:
Paul and Ananias respond [after the manner of] the great [figures] in salvation history, like Jeremiah [and] Isaiah. Even Moses had his difficulties [as when he said]: ‘But, Lord, I do not know how to speak, how am I going to go to the Egyptians and [deliver your message]?’ And Mary, [who said]: ‘But, Lord, I'm not married!’. It is the response of humility, of one who welcomes the Word of God with one’s heart. Instead, the doctors answered only with their heads. They do not know that the Word of God goes to the heart, do not know of conversion.
The Pope explained who are the ones that respond only with the head:
They are the great ideologues. The Word of Jesus goes to the heart because it is the Word of love, it is a beautiful word and brings love, makes us to love. These ideologues cut off the road of love, and also that of beauty – and they began to argue sharply among themselves, ‘How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’. All a matter of intellect! And when ideology enters into the Church, when ideology enters into our understanding of the Gospel, no [authentic] comprehen[sion] is [possible].
They are the ones who walk only “on the path of duty”: theirs is the moralis[tic outlook] of those who pretend to understand the Gospel with their heads alone. They are not “on the road to conversion, that conversion to which Jesus calls us.”
And these, on the road of duty, load everything on the shoulders of the faithful. The ideologues falsify the gospel. Every ideological interpretation, wherever it comes from – from [whatever side] – is a falsification of the Gospel. And these ideologues – as we have seen in the history of the Church – end up being intellectuals without talent, ethicists without goodness – and let us not so much as mention beauty, of which they understand nothing.
"Rather,” said Pope Francis, “the path of love, the way of the Gospel, is simple: it is the road that the Saints understood”:
The saints are those who lead the Church forward! The road of conversion, the way of humility, of love, of the heart, the way of beauty ... Today let us pray to the Lord for the Church: that the Lord might free her from any ideological interpretation and open the heart of the Church, our Mother Church, to the simple Gospel, to that pure Gospel that speaks to us of love, which brings love, and is so beautiful! It also makes us beautiful, with the beauty of holiness. Today let us pray for the Church.
|VATICAN MUSEUMS: BEAUTY TO BE HEARD|
Vatican City, 19 April 2013 (VIS) – Beginning 3 May until the end of October (except during the month of August) the Vatican Museums will host 21 evenings of music. Every Friday the Museums will have special hours from 7:30pm until 11:00pm. During these special openings, the music of Brahms, Debussy, Beethoven, Respighi, Piazzolla, Mendelssohn, and others will be offered in the Rooms of Raphael, the Gregorian Museum, the terraces of the Pinacoteca, or the Courtyard of the Pinecone in concerts beginning at 8:30pm and lasting around an hour.
The musical series, entitled “Beauty to be Heard” is the result of a collaboration between the Vatican Museums, the Venaria Real (the Royal Palace of Turin, Italy, a Baroque masterpiece declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site), and the Giuseppe Verdi National Conservatory of Turin. The initiative was born of the conviction that the Museums and the Venaria Real are not simply collections, architecture, history, or culture from the past, but the ideal meeting place for all those who want to transform art into a passion to be shared. In the "Room of the Signatura" of Raphael's Stanze, two winged cupids in the lunette above the Parnassus Wall—where Apollo, the god of Beauty and Poetry, surrounded by the Muses representing all the Arts, plays a lyre—bear signs reading “Numine afflatur”, inviting us to contemplate that Art, in all its manifestations, is inspired by divinity.
The beauty of music and the beauty of the figurative arts go hand in hand, Raphael says, portraying Apollo at the centre of his celestial court. This unity is what the youth of the Giuseppe Verdi National Conservatory wish to demonstrate in their Friday concerts at the Vatican Museums. The initiative also includes Saturday performances at the Venaria Reale during the summer months.
The Vatican Museums administration has also provided for a series of thematic guided visits on the musical iconography within the Museums. The complete schedule of “Il Bello da Sentire” (Beauty to be Heard) with the information regarding the places where the concerts will take place and details of the guided “musical” visits is available, in Italian, on the Vatican Museum website: www.museivaticani.va.
Vatican City, 19 April 2013 (VIS) – Today the Holy Father received:
- His Beatitude Ignace Youssif III Younan, Patriarch of Antioch of the Syrians, Lebanon, and
- His Excellency Mr. Antun Sbutega, ambassador of the Republic of Montenegro, on his farewell visit.
|OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS|
Vatican City, 19 April 2013 (VIS) – Today the Holy Father appointed Fr. Milan Lach, S.J., as auxiliary of the Archeparchy of Presov for Catholics of Byzantine rite (Catholics 123,373, priests 294, permanent deacons 2, religious 126), Slovak Republic. The bishop-elect was born in Kezmarok, Slovakia in 1973 and was ordained a priest in 2001. Since ordination he has served in several pastoral and academic roles, most recently as vice dean for Foreign Relations and Development in the Theology faculty of the University of Trnava, Slovakia. The Holy Father has assigned him the Titular See of Ostracine.