Read this with three points in mind.
1) Pope Benedict has a project for his pontificate to reinvigorate our Catholic identity so that we both can be better Catholics on the road to salvation and also contribute effectively to the public square.
2) Years ago at a conference of the Catholic Press Association, I heard a keynote speech by Card. George. He explained that the real work of a Catholic journalist is not so much to report on what priests, bishops and Pope’s do, as to report on the workings of grace amongst God’s people. Card. George explained that to recognize the workings of grace, you must be in the state of grace.
3) Our Lady of Fatima asked that Russia be consecrated by the Pope and all the bishops to her Immaculate Heart. I suggest that this is a
I read this in CNA.
Bishops consecrate Mexico to the Holy Spirit
Mexico City, Mexico, Apr 22, 2009 / 09:44 am (CNA).- In the Mass opening its 87th Plenary Assembly, the Bishops’ Conference of Mexico consecrated the nation to the Holy Spirit and prayed that the Spirit would help the country to “rebuild and strengthen the social fabric.”
Leading the more than 120 bishops gathered for the meeting, conference president Archbishop Carlos Aguiar Retes said, “The presence of evil in the history of humanity has always been repetitive and cyclical, enveloped in tragedy and drama, in struggle and ambition, over and over again the law of the survival of the fittest is imposed and the dignity of the human person is easily trampled underfoot.”
The archbishop called the meeting of the bishops “historic” and an effort to survive the violence which has overtaken the country. “The Bishops are convinced that [watch this] the Catholic Church in Mexico must intensify her positive presence in society in order rebuild and strengthen the social fabric (…). We are aware that such a task is only possible through the gift of the Holy Spirit,” he said. [And there is something else very important that must be done.]
The Archdiocese of Mexico City reported that Archbishop Aguiar has set Pentecost Sunday, May 31, as the day on which each diocese in the country will consecrate its own particular Church to the Holy Spirit, as was done in 1925 amidst the difficulties and persecution of the Cristeros War.
This is an excellent initiative.
I would add that the next step should be a comprehensive renewal of the Church’s sacred liturgy, especially along the lines the Holy Father has indicated both in his own liturgical theological writings and in his actions as Successor of Peter.
“The Bishops are convinced that the Catholic Church in Mexico must intensify her positive presence in society in order rebuild and strengthen the social fabric (…). We are aware that such a task is only possible through the gift of the Holy Spirit,”
A wise and powerful statement . . . So true for the USA as well.
“I would add that the next step should be a comprehensive renewal of the Church’s sacred liturgy”
I agree totally…but…that would require that all of these Bishops (and all Bishops in general) acknowledge the connection between liturgical tradition and Catholic identity. Recent history would indicate that many don’t, and instead see the Church’s relationship with the modern world as flowing from the popular culture. And so, rather than striving to shape the modern world through the influence of the Catholic faith, they opt instead to shape the Catholic faith through the influence of the modern world.
Still, this is a remarkable initiative and our prayers should be with them.
Considering how prevelant the Culture of Death is in the USA, I wish the American bishops would perform some type of consecration…
God bless Mexico! Down here in Texas, we have (those who look and listen do, anyway) a keen understanding of the stress the people there are under, between a godless State and godless criminals.
Resisting. DNFTT DNFTT DNFTT …
I am not given to see this in such a positive light. Yes, a consecration is a good thing. But what does it entail in practical terms? When I have been in Mexico, I have noticed that the so-called charismatic renewal is spreading like wildfire there. One can go into the beautiful old baroque colonial churches and experience the cognitive dissonance of seeing the Blessed Sacrament exposed while some woman religious wails away on a microphone for an hour straight in spontaneous charismatic prayer (occasionally interrupted by guitars). In some areas this charismatic stuff is sanctioned by the bishop himself, but certainly by the parish priest. And it is largely unsupervised, which means it tends to derail itself from the Catholic track after a while.
If a “consecration to the Holy Spirit” results in stronger encouragement of emotional pseudo-spirituality, then that is a sadness and a poverty.
We also need more exorcists.
Some background info: The first consecration of
Mexico to the Holy Spirit in 1924 was proposed by
Venerable Félix de Jesús Rougier, M.Sp.S. who
submitted a petition with 180,000 signatures to the
National Eucharistic Congress of that year. He was
inspired by the Venerable Concepción Cabrera de Armida,
instrument for the five “Works of the Cross” to be
established in the Church.
Bill in Texas
I agree whole heartily. Those poor people are in great pain. I for one am glad to see the church leadership take steps to comfort them and give them hope. Simply acknowledging publicly that they have a role to play in solving this tragedy is a step in the right direction.
Pray for them all.
Your point number 3 referenced Fatima, eliciting responses. Why, then, were those comments deleted, pro or con, regarding the Consecration? They took away from the main topic? Perhaps the feelings are too strong? I did note one untoward remark. Just askin’
Gloria, your comments were untoward. Tom
Re: charismatic movement, Pentecostals, et al
If people are interested in the Holy Spirit, it would have behooved the bishops of Mexico long ago to push that interest into orthodox and useful channels, and to keep an eye on things. Apparently they didn’t do that as soon as they could have; but they’re doing it now. Better late than never. This is a good thing.
Mexico has a culture that likes drama and excitement. (Well, who doesn’t?) Natural fervor and religious spirit breaks out everywhere. But without proper teaching, you get a lot of crazy bad made-up stuff like the narcosaints and the cult of St. Death. I believe the bishops are hoping that this big dramatic movement will do something to counteract this stuff, as well as hoping that the Holy Spirit will take pity on them and the people of Mexico, by admitting to Him in such a big way that they need His help. Is the in-Mexico war of gang armies vs the police, emigration/illegal stuff, and sexslave trafficking under the guise of finding jobs abroad for young Mexicans, as serious a situation as the Cristeros War? It might well be.
It is most likely the Holy Spirit who has inspired the bishops of Mexico to ask for help. But in any case, it could never be wrong or unnecessary to honor God, to reconsecrate ourselves and our churches to Him, or to beg for His aid. We always need His help.
Just a little point:
I agree with the sentiment – though not necessarily the way it has been articulated here – that the charismatic movements within the Church have in a certain way “co-opted” the Person of the Holy Spirit to themselves. When people hear now of the “gifts” of the Holy Spirit, they are more likely to think of speaking in tongues or being slain in the spirit than of Wisdom or Counsel. This is beyond regrettable.
However, it would be wrong to imply that the extent of devotion to the Holy Spirit in Mexico is purely “charismatic” and surface-level. Arguably one of the greatest, most theologically orthodox, and beautifully written books on the Holy Spirit, “The Sanctifier,” was written by the late Archbishop of Mexico City, Louis Martinez.
I think we would do well to remember things like that. There’s a lot more to this than the charismatic movement.
Does this mean Mexico has been confirmed? Should we start calling it Mexico Mary-Joseph Americas?
I wonder what formula they used in the consecration? What do you think Father?