MIDLAND – Midland’s St. Stephen’s Catholic Church, 4600 W. Neely, and the Diocese of San Angelo, will be hosting a YOUTH 2000 Retreat the weekend of January 28-30. In 2000, San Angelo hosted its first YOUTH 2000 Retreat with an attendance of 650 youth and chaperones. Five other retreats have been held since with similar attendance.
In 1989 at World Youth Day in Santiago de Compostello, Spain, Pope John Paul II declared to the young people, “It is to you young people that the task first falls of bearing witness to the faith and bringing into the third millennium the Gospel of Christ, Who is the Way, the Truth, the Life.”’
Pope John Paul II continually calls upon the youth of the Church to be instruments and leaders of a new effort to bring the Gospel of Christ to the world. In Rome at the XVth World Youth Day, he challenged the young people to “set the Eucharist at the center of your personal life and community life: love the Eucharist, adore the Eucharist, and celebrate it,…Live the Eucharist by testifying to God’s love for every person.”
YOUTH 2000, a spiritual retreat for young people, responds to the Holy Father’s call by focusing on Christ’s greatest gift which is the Eucharist and the real true presence. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament demonstrates to young people that Christ must be the center of their lives. Through the Sacraments, Adoration, devotion to Mary, teaching, meditation, prayer, discussion, presentations and music, young people are drawn into a closer relationship with God. Young people are given the opportunity during the YOUTH 2000 retreat to grow in their understanding of the Catholic faith and to deepen their commitment to the service of the Church and others. In this way YOUTH 2000 also responds to the U.S. Bishops’ directives as stated in “Renewing the Vision,” to draw young people into a relationship with Jesus Christ and to encourage young people to become active in their parishes and in the programs in their diocese.
YOUTH 2000 is an international movement founded by Ernest Williams, a citizen of the United Kingdom. The first YOUTH 2000 Retreat was held in the former Yugoslavia in the summer of 1990 and was attended by over 6,000 young people from all over the world. YOUTH 2000 has since spread to countries throughout the world. The first YOUTH 2000 in the U.S., at which Bishop Michael Pfeifer, O.M.I., Bishop of the Diocese of San Angelo, was one of the presiders, was held in Dallas, Texas in June of 1992. Since that time, hundreds of YOUTH 2000 Retreats have been held all over the country, with many retreats scheduled every year.
The event will begin at 7 p.m., Friday, Jan. 28, and will continue all day Saturday, concluding with a Mass on Sunday, Jan. 30.
For more information or to request registration forms, please call Dennis Robson at St. Stephen’s Parish, (432) 520-7394
For more information, please contact Jimmy Patterson, Director of Communications for the Diocese of San Angelo, at jimmyLeePatterson@gmail.com, or 432.889.6640.
This is your new blog post. Click here and start typing, or drag in elements from the top bar.
Pro-life supporters in all three deaneries of the Diocese of San Angelo -- Midland (pictured here), Abilene and San Angelo -- joined together Jan. 21-22, the 38th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, which legalized abortions in the United States. In the years since the decision almost 500 million unborns have met with an early and tragic death.
By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Purgatory is like a purifying fire burning inside a person, a painful experience of regret for one's sins, Pope Benedict XVI said.
"A soul stained by sin cannot present itself to God," the pope said Jan. 12 at his weekly general audience.
The pope spoke about purgatory in an audience talk dedicated to the life and mystical writings of St. Catherine of Genoa, a 15th-century married woman who ran Genoa's largest hospital.
Married at age 16 to an older man with a gambling problem, she initially lived a very worldly life, the pope said, but after about 10 years, she was struck by the emptiness of her life, especially in comparison to the greatness of God's love.
She began a "life of purification, which, for a long time, made her experience constant pain for the sins she committed and pushed her to impose penances and sacrifices on herself to demonstrate her love to God," the pope said.
Although she is the author of a "Treatise on Purgatory," Pope Benedict said, "she never received specific revelations about purgatory or the souls that are being purified there."
Rather, her deep prayer and focus on the conflict between human sin and God's love led her to understand how logically a person who has sinned would not be worthy to be in the presence of an all-loving, all-perfect God, the pope said.
Unlike most Catholics of her day, he said, she was convinced purgatory was not a place, but a process.
"The soul that is aware of the immense love and perfect justice of God consequently suffers for not having responded correctly and perfectly to that love," the pope said, adding that the suffering is purgatory.
- - -
Editor's Note: The text of the pope's audience remarks in English will be posted online at: www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/audiences/2011/documents/hf_ben-xvi_aud_20110112_en.html.
The text of the pope's audience remarks in Spanish will be posted online at: www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/audiences/2011/documents/hf_ben-xvi_aud_20110112_sp.html.
Fr. Andy Wueste, OMI, passed away Wednesday morning at the Madonna Residence in San Antonio. Fr. Wueste was 81, and spent many years as the Director of Christ the King Retreat Center in San Angelo.
Funeral arrangements and burial are as follows:
Rosary - Friday, Jan. 7, 7 pm, Immaculate Conception Chapel at the Oblate School of Theology, 285 Oblate Drive, San Antonio, TX 78216
Mass of Christian Burial - Saturday, Jan. 8, 10 am, Immaculate Conception Chapel at the Oblate School of Theology, 285 Oblate Drive, San Antonio, TX 78216
Burial at the Oblate Cemetery, 285 Oblate Drive, San Antonio, TX 78216
A statement from the diocese read, "Fr. Wueste was a wonderful person who had many friends in the Diocese and will be missed by many. Please keep Fr. Wueste and his family and friends in your prayers."
By Bishop Michael Pfeifer, OMI
On January 9, 2011, a referendum will be held in the country of Sudan, which will determine if southern Sudan will secede from greater Sudan. The result of this referendum could cause a civil war in Sudan and spread throughout this region of Africa.
Already more than 2 million people have lost their lives to war in Sudan, and an additional 4 million have been displaced.
The U.S. Bishops strongly encourage all of our people to pray for the leaders and people of Sudan to work towards peace in Sudan that has already been ravaged by war, poverty and hunger. The Bishops’ Conference and Catholic Relief Services (CRS) are working to support the program, Peace in Sudan. This effort aims to engage Catholics in acts of prayer, learning, advocating, and giving on behalf of Sudan. This initiative will encourage our government to redouble its efforts for peace in Sudan, and for our government, the Church in Sudan and CRS to be prepared for emergencies that may arise if the peace effort fails. As your bishop, I ask you to join in the days of prayer and action for peace in Sudan as a way of joining in solidarity with our Sudanese brothers and sisters. Our prayers could prevent another genocide in Sudan.
As we prepare to celebrate the birthday of the Prince of Peace on Christmas, let us ask the Child Jesus in the manger to move the hearts of all the people in Sudan to accept the peace that this wonderful child is offering to this country and to all people of the world.
Editor’s Note: This is the second in a series of four articles from the diocesan tribunal office.
By Rev. Tom Barley
Diocese of San Angelo
During the Year of the Family, it is important to explore a variety of marriage situations in which the Tribunal of the Diocese of San Angelo may be able to help you or someone that you know who wishes to have a past marriage reviewed for annulment. Previously, we looked at Lack of Form where a Catholic has married outside of the Church, divorced, and then wishes to marry again in the Church. This month we begin a series of articles on Formal Cases—Annulments.
Formal Cases of previous marriages are when a Catholic married in the Catholic Church; or when a Catholic married outside of the Catholic Church, but with the permission of his Bishop; or when a non-Catholic married a non-Catholic in a religious, civil or common-law marriage. These cases are when someone is seeking an annulment or what is now called a Declaration of Invalidity (Declaration of Freedom to Marry).
Let us consider some commonly asked questions.
What is marriage? Marriage is a sacred and committed, covenant relationship between a man and a woman in which they form a partnership of the whole of life and which is ordered by its nature to the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of children. (C. 1150). In Canon Law, each marriage is considered to be valid until proven invalid. (C. 1060). Marital consent of the parties, legitimately manifested between persons free to marry, makes marriage. Marital consent is an act of the will which is given and accepted through an irrevocable covenant in order to establish marriage. (C. 1057). Therefore, while marriage thrives in a loving relationship, it does not end if a couple quits loving one another. A covenant relationship is patterned after the divine relationship of God, the Father, with the people of Israel as well as the divine relationship of the Christ with the Church. These relationships can never be broken.
What is invalid? The terms “legal” and “illegal” pertain to civil law. To be “valid,” an act must have certain traits and qualities. Likewise, invalidity is a Church term meaning that something, which is required for validity, is missing. The Church has gleaned from the divine relationships that, in marriage, the required elements are certain abilities, intentions, actions, understandings, and characteristics. All that is required for marriage must be present or intended or fulfilled by both parties for validity. If a required element is missing at the moment of consent (vows), then the marriage may be determined to be invalid. The Church recognizes that the civil marriage was legal, but it might determine that the marriage was missing an essential component in order for it to have been valid.
What affect does an annulment have on the children? Because civil law and canon law operate independently of each other, canon law has absolutely NO AFFECT on the legitimacy of children of the marriage. Indeed, the Church views all children as ‘gifts of God’.
Why should I get an annulment? God is the originator of any vocation. And, if you suffered a divorce, your calling to the vocation of marriage remains constant. So, in the future, you may wish to celebrate the Sacrament of Matrimony. If your ex-spouse is living, an annulment will be necessary. More importantly, the annulment process is an opportunity to address prayerfully any unresolved hurts or issues. Many people who petition for an annulment find God’s healing and peace that has been absent from their lives in the years following turmoil in the marriage.
Will my petition be confidential? Yes. However, the Respondent does have a right to review the Acts of the case. Rarely is this right enacted.
Will I need a civil attorney? No. A civil attorney has no status in the Tribunal cases. Church Advocates serve in that capacity in Tribunal cases.
Does every petition for an annulment get approved? No. Each case is judged on its own merits, the testimony, and marriage law in canon law. Furthermore, this is not an automatic process or a giving of favors to certain people. In each case, the Judge seeks the truth through testimony and proofs. The Judge uses moral certitude in deciding the verdict in the case.
How long does it take to get an annulment? That depends on several factors (i.e., how quickly you contact your parish office, complete the petition and get the required documents; how fast the Tribunal can review your case; how long it takes to get sufficient testimony from witnesses; and, how much time it might take for each party to respond). We inform those who petition the Tribunal that it can take a year or longer, depending on all of the factors mentioned. Furthermore, we encourage the petitioner to complete their work sooner than later.
How much is charged for an annulment? The Diocese of San Angelo charges $200 for an annulment. Of that amount, $100 goes to the Diocese and $100 goes to the Appellate Court in San Antonio for automatic review of the case.
What documents will I need in an annulment? Basic documents include: a recent official copy of your Baptismal certificate from your church of Baptism, your marriage license, and your divorce decree.
Other concerns: If your fiancée also has a previous marriage, it must be submitted to the Tribunal at the same time as your petition.
What if I or my intended is not Catholic? Why does the Catholic Church have to annul a non-Catholic marriage? The Catholic Church becomes involved with non-Catholic marriages that have ended in divorce only when the non-Catholic asks for a sacrament from our Church – marrying a Catholic or joining the Church. The Tribunal becomes involved to establish that both parties are free to marry.
How do I begin an annulment? First take some time on prayer. Then contact your parish office and talk to the priest or a tribunal advocate in the parish.
Tribunal Office – Diocesan Pastoral Center (325) 651-7500
Rev. Tom Barley, JCL, Judicial Vicar
Mr. Tom Burke, JCL, Judge
Mrs. Jean Gully, Secretary