Many will find this first warning sign surprising. As Catholics, are we not all called to obey the Holy Father? Indeed, we are. When a new association sincerely seeks to obey and follow the teachings of the Holy Father, canonists are for the most part satisfied the group is doing what Catholic groups ought to do. Nevertheless, some new associations abuse Catholic sensibility in this regard. This brings us to Fr. No sense of belonging to the local church. As Catholics, we belong to the universal Church. Yet we also belong to the local church community, meaning a local parish and a local diocese.
Even the Holy Father is not exempt in this regard; he is, after all, the Bishop of Rome and thus belongs to a local Roman Church. Thus the ministry and apostolate of any association should focus on the local church.
If a new association or religious order has no sense of belonging to the local church, then this becomes cause for concern. Lack of true cooperation with diocesan authorities. To belong to the local church, one must cooperate with local diocesan authorities. After all, Christ instituted His Church as a hierarchy. Thus the local bishop, and not a particular religious group or association, bears ultimate responsibility for the care of souls within a particular geographical location. If a new association refuses or impedes cooperation between itself and the local diocesan authorities, then its fidelity to the Church is questionable.
Making use of lies and falsehoods to obtain approval. As Catholics, we concern ourselves with speaking the truth. This is not just a matter of basic honesty; any group or association that resorts to falsehoods to gain approval is likely concealing a deeper problem. The Church understands that every association, particularly when the association is new, makes mistakes when engaging in ministry or apostolate. When an association is honest, however, these problems are easily identified and quickly corrected. This in turn increases the likelihood of the new association succeeding within the Church.
Too soon an insistence on placing all goods in common. While the Church has a history of associations and religious orders in which members place all their goods in common, the decision to do so should come after a reasonable period of careful discernment. Additionally, the potential for abuse by those who administer the common goods is great.
Canon Law: Finding Books
Therefore, canonists frown upon any insistence by an association that its new or potential members place their goods in common. Due to the fact that modern times see less stability in common life, with members sometimes opting to leave after a number of years, the most prudent handling of goods in common is to place them in trust until a member dies. That way, if the member leaves, the goods are available to meet his or her needs outside of the community. Claiming special revelations or messages leading to the founding of the group.
Although this represents a warning sign, it is not absolute. The Church recognizes the presence of many legitimate apparitions and private revelations throughout her history. Yet not all alleged apparitio. Therefore, the Church must further investigate any claims of special revelations or messages — particularly when they become the catalyst for founding a new association.
If, however, a new association refuses to divulge or submit its alleged revelations or special messages to the Church, then this immediately calls into question the authenticity of both the association and the alleged apparition. Special status of the founder or foundress. Of course, the founder or foundress will always enjoy a special role in the founding of a new association or community. Nevertheless, in all other respects he or she should be a member just like everyone else.
This means that he or she is similarly bound to the customs, disciplines, and constitutions of the community. If the founder or foundress demands special meals, special living quarters, special dispensations from the rules imposed upon other members of the community, or any other special treatment, then this is a clear warning sign. It is of special concern if the founder or foundress claims exemption from the requirements of Christian morality due to his or her status see point 15 below. Special and severe penances imposed.
As St. Thomas Aquinas teaches, virtue is found in the middle, between two extremes. Therefore, any penances imposed upon members of the community should be both moderate and reasonable.
The Status of Women in the Code of Canon Law and in the United Nations Convention
Special and severe penances are not signs of virtue — rather, they are signs of extremism. Multiplicity of devotions, without any doctrinal unity among them. Servant Publications, catalog. Francis de Sales Sophia Institute Press, www. Eerdmans Publishing Company, www.
Lewis Touchstone, www. Servant Books, catalog. Peter M. Stravinskas Newman House Press, www.
Catholic Group Petitions Pope to Excommunicate Nancy Pelosi
Dennis Murphy Novalis, www. Nouwen Image Books Doubleday, www. Raby Msgr. Praem St. Anthony Messenger Press, catalog. Join Gillian Kantor as she explores themes and ideas from Scripture and places them in the context of contemporary and classic literature. With author interviews and suggested readings, Word for Word invites viewers to consider Christian themes in whatever book they are reading — old or new, spiritual or not.
Whatever our genre of choice, a hint of mystery certainly flavours every library. And this is the mystery of the Holy Trinity — with, yes, the strong characters, suspense, and surprise that we all come to expect in our mystery stories.
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The only difference is: a lot fewer people are willing to take on the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity than they are to pick up that mystery novel. In this episode of Word for Word, Fr. Thomas Norris, author of The Trinity: Life of God, Hope for Humanity: Towards a Theology of Communion , joins us in studio to discuss this intriguing mystery of the Most Holy Trinity and to challenge us to understand the Trinity as an example of communion — for us. It is a chance to stand out, to be different.
To serve the Lord, to love your neighbour as yourself, to boldly be motivated by and act out of love and nothing else.
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