Heavenly Father, you are the Creator and we are all your children. Make us truly one. Protect us from the division in families, in communities, in the Church and in the world.
Lord Jesus Christ, you are the Savior who died for us and saved us. Now as your disciples, you send us forth to proclaim the good news of salvation in you throughout the world. May we be worthy witnesses. Show us the way to self-denial, embrace of the cross, and following you. Raise among us true servant leaders who have a passion for souls.
Holy Spirit, you are the agent of evangelization who sends us to engage in spiritual warfare. Equip us with the armor of God and weapons of righteousness. Help us to preserve unity in the Spirit through the bond of peace. May we stand together as your holy warriors.
Triune God, you are three Persons in one God. In you we have one baptism, one faith, one hope. We are one body. Help us to truly become united in mind and heart, in vision and mission, to be one with the Father through the Son and in the Spirit.
Mama Mary, you are our beloved Mother. We are your offspring who strive to keep God's commands, bear witness to Jesus, and wage war in the Spirit against the enemy. Cover us with your mantle of protection, keeping us in your loving embrace always.
We as the people of God live by the Spirit and not by the flesh. “Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified their flesh with its passions and desires.” (v.24). We are to avoid the works of the flesh. “Now the works of the flesh are obvious: immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions, occasions of envy, drinking bouts, orgies, and the like.” (v.19-21a).
December 12, 2016 (C-Fam) – With his job still on the line, the newly appointed UN independent expert for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights laid out a provocative agenda for his 3-year term a couple weeks ago. “This mandate will cover every country under the sun and under the moon,” Thai Professor Vitit Muntarbhorn is reported to have said, further antagonizing countries that have already promised not to cooperate with him.
After an initial draft was released on Monday, conservative bishops vowed to change the language on gays, cohabitation and re-marriage, saying it had created confusion among the faithful and threatened to undermine the traditional family.
Gay rights groups expressed deep disappointment with the final version, while the conservative Catholic blog Rorate Caeli hailed it as "a considerable setback for the revolutionaries".
The two-paragraph section of the final document dealing with homosexuals was titled "Pastoral attention towards persons with homosexual orientations". The previous, three-paragraph version had been called "Welcoming homosexuals."
The earlier version spoke of "accepting and valuing their (homosexuals') sexual orientations" and giving gays "a welcoming home". The final version eliminated those phrases and most of the other language that church progressives and gay rights groups had hailed as a breakthrough.
The new version used more vague, general language, repeating earlier church statements that gays "should be welcomed with respect and sensitivity" and that discrimination against gays "is to be avoided".
Francis DeBernardo, executive director of New Ways Ministry, a Catholic gay rights group in the United States, said it was "very disappointing that the synod's final report did not retain the gracious welcome to lesbian and gay people that the draft of the report included".
"Instead, the bishops have taken a narrow view of pastoral care by defining it simply as opposition to marriage for same-gender couples," he said.
The final version stressed that "there is no foundation whatsoever" to compare homosexual marriage to heterosexual marriage, calling heterosexual marriage "God's plan for matrimony and the family".
The earlier version said the church should acknowledge that couples in same-sex relations offered "mutual aid" and "precious support" for each other in times of difficulty.
"People who found hope in the respectful, welcoming tone of the midterm report will be crushed by the removal of that language in the final document. It's just gone, replaced with the same off-putting phrases we've heard for decades," said Marianne Duddy-Burke of DignityUSA, a Catholic gay rights group.
Voting counts released by the Vatican showed that controversial articles, including the final version of one of the two on gays, failed to get the two-thirds majority needed for a consensus.
This indicated that progressive bishops may have voted against them because they felt the language had become too restrictive or watered down.
Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said the entire document would now serve for further reflection among Catholics ahead of another, definitive synod next year.
In his final address to the gathering, Pope Francis, who had called on the bishops to speak their minds frankly, said he would have been "worried and saddened" if there had not been such heated, honest discussion during the gathering.
The pope also warned against both "hostile rigidity" by traditionalists as well as "destructive good will" by progressives who wanted change at any cost.
Eastern Canada Regional Conference
1250 Markham Rd, Scarborough
May 12 - 13, 2017
Planet Bowl 5555 Eglinton Ave West Etobicoke April 29, 1 PM
March For Life
Parliament Hill, Ottawa May 11, 2017, 12 PM Bus leaves: St. Francis Xavier Church Miississauga - 6 AM Kennedy Commons Scarborough - 7 AM
Last updated: Monday, April 3, 2017