Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI Declares a "Year of Faith"

In a homily on October 16, Pope Benedict XVI announced a "Year of Faith"  (which you can read here, or watch here). He said that he would further elucidate what his ideas were in an Apostolic letter later in the week.

Well of course he did!

In an Apostolic letter dated October 11, Pope Benedict XVI slated the "Year of Faith" to begin on October 11, 2012 (the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council, and the 20th anniversary of the Catechism of the Catholic Church), and end on the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Universal King, November 24, 2013. PLEASE read it. Pope Benedict says so many great things in his letter, especially in regards to faith both intellectually and spiritually.

Pope Benedict said that the "The Year of Faith... is a summons to an authentic and renewed conversion to the Lord, the one Saviour of the world." It seems that the emphasis will be on the teachings of the Church and, especially, on the Catechism. At other times, however, His Holiness seems to speak of the Year of Faith as an emphasis on spiritual faith. I would bet, then, that the year will place a focus on the intellect of the Catholic Church, and its relation to spirituality. Obviously, the fact that Pope Benedict specifically pointed out the anniversary of both  Vatican II and the Catechism means that the cornerstone of the Year of Faith will be these two gifts to the Catholic Church. In fact, Pope Benedict said that the role of the Catechism will be to "serve as a tool providing real support for the faith."

Currently, there is only one event planned for the Year of Faith. A General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops has been convoked for October 2012, with the theme of “The New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith.” Other than that, the Pope has asked the other dicasteries (he specifies the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith) to draw up a Note which will "[provide] the Church and individual believers with some guidelines on how to live this Year of Faith in the most effective and appropriate ways, at the service of belief and evangelization."

What events would you like to see during he Year of Faith? I personally would like to see some sort of indulgence attached to the intellect or maybe the Catechism. But what about you?

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