The Cardinal Newman Society
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 16, 2008
Cardinal Calls for Faithful to Rally
in Rome in Support of Pope Benedict
CNS Urges Americans to Support Pope with Prayers on Sunday
MANASSAS, VA – The Cardinal Newman Society, a national organization that works to strengthen and renew Catholic higher education, is urging American Catholics to pray Sunday in solidarity with Pope Benedict XVI following offensive protests that forced him to cancel an address at Rome’s La Sapienza University.
Cardinal Camillo Ruini, Vicar for the Diocese of Rome, has urged Catholics to rally in St. Peter’s Square during Sunday’s recitation of the Angelus as a powerful display of support for the Holy Father, whose visit to La Sapienza was canceled because of anti-Catholic protests and false accusations that the Pope is not supportive of scientific discovery.
“For American Catholics who cannot be in Rome, we urge special prayers on Sunday to demonstrate both our love for Pope Benedict and our steadfast confidence in the unity of faith and reason,” said CNS president Patrick J. Reilly. “We hope that pastors will join us by including special prayers in Sunday’s petitions and by teaching Catholics the truth about the Church’s centuries-old dedication to science and higher education.”
Pope Benedict will make a rare visit to the United States in April 2008 and has summoned all presidents of U.S. Catholic colleges to meet with him in Washington. For nearly 20 years the Vatican has been working to strengthen the Catholic identity of Catholic colleges, and the intensity of those efforts has increased in recent years. CNS has been supporting and promoting these Vatican initiatives in the United States for the past 15 years.
“In advance of the Holy Father’s historic visit to the United States in April, we can draw upon this unfortunate incident as a valuable teaching moment for the Church and the secular world, which would seek truth without recognizing the Father and Creator, the fount of all truth,” said Reilly.
The unity of faith and reason has been a lifetime interest of Pope Benedict XVI and his predecessor Pope John Paul II, both of whom had been university scholars with great appreciation for higher education. The noted philosopher Ralph McInerny has said, “It sometimes seems that the only voice insisting on the power of human reason is that of the Holy Father.”
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Grant unto thy Church, we beseech Thee, O merciful God, that She, being gathered together by the Holy Ghost, may be in no wise troubled by attack from her foes. O God, who by sin art offended and by penance pacified, mercifully regard the prayers of Thy people making supplication unto Thee,and turn away the scourges of Thine anger which we deserve for our sins. Almighty and Everlasting God, in whose Hand are the power and the government of every realm: look down upon and help the Christian people that the heathen nations who trust in the fierceness of their own might may be crushed by the power of thine Arm. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. R. Amen.
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