Greed destroys, money is God’s gift to use to help others, pope says

Greed destroys, money is God’s gift to use to help others, pope says

By Carol Glatz Catholic News Service

POPE-MONEY Oct-21-2013 (350 words) xxxi

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Money by itself isn’t a problem, but greed and an attachment to money cause evil and destroy families and relationships, Pope Francis said.

“Money is needed to bring about many good things,” he said in his morning Mass homily Oct. 21, “but when your heart is attached (to money), it destroys you.”

“How many destroyed families have we seen because of money problems, sibling against sibling, father against child,” he said during the Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, according to Vatican Radio. Read more

Pope’s letter to non-believers in Italian paper La Repubblica

Pope’s letter to non-believers in Italian paper La Repubblica

(Vatican Radio) Does God forgive non-believers? Does absolute truth exist? And is God merely a creation of the human mind?
In a lengthy letter to the former editor of the Italian daily ‘La Repubblica’, Eugenio Scalfari, Pope Francis shares reflections on these three questions and urges all non-believers to engage with Christians in an open and sincere conversation.

Listen to Philippa Hitchen’s report:

In the letter published on Wednesday, the Pope laments the impasse that has grown up over the centuries with those who see Christianity as ‘dark and superstitious,’ in opposition to the ‘light of reason’. Read more

Take Action, But Not Military Action, in Syria Advocate, Pray, and Fast for Peace

Take Action, But Not Military Action, in Syria
Advocate, Pray, and Fast for Peace

With Pope Francis, the Bishops, other faith leaders, and the world community, we at NETWORK deplore ongoing violence in Syria, including the use of chemical weapons on the Syrian people. We are gravely concerned with the suffering of millions of refugees and displaced people. We have issued a statement calling on political leaders to:

-Intensify U.S. diplomatic engagement with other nations in calling for a ceasefire and peace negotiations

-Ensure immediate, unrestricted access by humanitarian organizations to the people of Syria

-Provide humanitarian aid to all those affected by the ongoing violence in Syria and among Syrian refugee communities

NETWORK strongly encourages you to call your Representative, who may be one of many undecided on military action in Syria, and convey the above messages. The number for the Capitol Switchboard is: (202) 224-3121. If you do not know who your representative is, click here.

Coming to a position about how NETWORK should advise decision-makers to proceed was difficult. As we call our political leaders to peaceful action, we also encourage you to mobilize the power of prayer and spiritual community. NETWORK joins Catholic Sisters, including and especially the Sisters of the Good Shepherd in Lebanon and Syria, and all who suffer violence and insecurity, in prayer. Join us and respond to the call of Pope Francis:  “We want a peaceful world, we want to be men and women of peace, and we want in our society, torn apart by divisions and conflict, that peace break out! War never again! Never again war! Peace is a precious gift, which must be promoted and protected.”

NETWORK invites you to accept Pope Francis’ invitation to all faithful, peace-seeking people to participate in a day of fasting and prayer tomorrow (Saturday), “invoking God’s great gift of peace upon the beloved nation of Syria and upon each situation of conflict and violence around the world.” See the full text of the Pope’s appeal for peace here.  For more information on Saturday’s day of fasting and prayer visit Find the Vatican liturgy and livestream here. To connect on social media, use the hashtags #Fast4Syria and #PrayforPeace, and share reflections with others on NETWORK’s Facebook page

Invoking God’s great gift of peace, 

Claire Markham

Field Associate


P.S. You can also read statements on the ongoing conflict in Syria from these other Catholic communities: Maryknoll Office of Global ConcernsPax Christi InternationalSisters of Mercy, and Franciscan Action Network.


Encyclical Letter – Lumen Fidei (The Light of Faith)


1. The light of Faith: this is how the Church’s tradition speaks of the great gift brought by Jesus. In John’s Gospel, Christ says of himself: “I have come as light into the world, that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness” (Jn 12:46). Saint Paul uses the same image: “God who said ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ has shone in our hearts” (2 Cor 4:6). The pagan world, which hungered for light, had seen the growth of the cult of the sun god, Sol Invictus, invoked each day at sunrise. Yet though the sun was born anew each morning, it was clearly incapable of casting its light on all of human existence. The sun does not illumine all reality; its rays cannot penetrate to the shadow of death, the place where men’s eyes are closed to its light. “No one — Saint Justin Martyr writes — has ever been ready to die for his faith in the sun”.[1] Conscious of the immense horizon which their faith opened before them, Christians invoked Jesus as the true sun “whose rays bestow life”.[2] To Martha, weeping for the death of her brother Lazarus, Jesus said: “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” (Jn 11:40). Those who believe, see; they see with a light that illumines their entire journey, for it comes from the risen Christ, the morning star which never sets. Read more

In first encyclical, pope celebrates faith as the light of human life

In first encyclical, pope celebrates faith as the light of human life

Pope Francis waves as he arrives to lead a general audience in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican June 26. His first encyclical, “Lumen Fidei” (“The Light of Faith”), was released July 5. (CNS/Paul Haring)5

By Francis X. Rocca
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis’ first encyclical, “Lumen Fidei” (“The Light of Faith”), is a celebration of Christian faith as the guiding light of a “successful and fruitful life,” inspiring social action as well as devotion to God, and illuminating “every aspect of human existence,” including philosophy and the natural sciences.

The document, released July 5, completes a papal trilogy on the three “theological virtues,” following Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclicals “Deus Caritas Est” (2005) on charity and “Spe Salvi” (2007) on hope. Publication of the encyclical was one of the most awaited events of the Year of Faith which began in October 2012. Read more



REV. JOHN A. PERRICONE, Ph.D., Fordham  University; Executive Director, Christi Fideles.

Perricone, Rev. John A. (1999) “Catholic Theology of Work and Worship,” St. John’s Law Review: Vol. 73: Iss. 3, Article 10.

In Frederick Nietzsche’s Thus Spake Zarathustra1 , Zarathustra is asked about his happiness. He replies, “Do I then strive after happiness? I strive after my work.”‘  In this phrase, Nietzsche correctly identified one of the extremes in which modernity conceives the nature of man: Man is his work.

The unfortunate result of this conception of man is that work does not furnish happiness. Happiness is the result of reposing in the possession of an end or purpose, which here is always being striven for, but never achieved. Since God alone is that which gives life purpose, absent God purposefulness vanishes. Modernity has exiled God from its world. Work is performed for its own sake and carries no gratification.  Read more

Pope at audience: Counter a culture of waste with solidarity

Vatican Radio

Pope at audience: Counter a culture of waste with solidarity

(Vatican Radio) When stock markets drop ten points its ‘a tragedy’ but starving children, homeless people dying on our streets, people disposed of like trash – such as the unborn or the elderly – has become the norm.

This is the result of a culture of waste, of our being unable to ‘read the signs’ of God’s creation, His free gift to us, and of allowing money and not man rule society. A culture of solidarity should prevail over our culture of waste, because when we care for and cultivate creation – including the human person – when we share our resources, we all have enough.

This Wednesday Pope Francis dedicated his general audience with thousands of pilgrims and visitors to St Peter’s square to the UN World Environment Day. Emer McCarthy reports: Read more



Vatican City, 5 June 2013 (VIS) – Pope Francis dedicated the catechesis of today’s Wednesday morning general audience to the environment, noting that today marks the World Environment Day promoted by the United Nations.

“When we speak of the environment, of creation, my thoughts go to the first pages of the Bible, to the Book of Genesis, where it is affirms that God puts man and woman on earth ‘to cultivate and care for it’. And the question comes to me:” the Pope said to the faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square, “What does it mean to cultivate and care for the earth? Are we truly cultivating and caring for creation? Or are we exploiting and neglecting it?” Read more

Examine what prevents intimacy with Christ, Pope says

Examine what prevents intimacy with Christ, Pope says

Pope Francis leads the Bishops of Italy in a solemn Profession of Faith in St. Peter’s Basilica for their 65th General Assembly May 23, 2013. Credit: Stephen Driscoll/CNA.

Vatican City, May 29, 2013 / 12:06 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The faithful need to examine their lives to find the “riches” that prevent them from “getting close to Jesus” like the young man who refuses to give his possessions to the poor in order to follow Christ.

Pope Francis focused his homily May 27 on the episode in the Gospel in which Jesus asks a young man to give all his riches to the poor and then follow him. However, rather than following Christ’s call, the young man goes away sad.

During his daily Mass at the Domus Sanctae Marthae, Pope Francis told those present that we all have “riches” that create obstacles in our intimacy with Jesus. Read more

Pope Calls for Ethics Reforms, End to ‘Cult of Money’

Pope Calls for Ethics Reforms, End to ‘Cult of Money’

From CNS, Staff and other sources


In his strongest remarks yet concerning the world’s economic and financial crises, the pope said, “Money has to serve, not to rule.

“We have created new idols,” Pope Francis told a group of diplomats gathered at the Vatican on May 16, and the “golden calf of old has found a new and heartless image in the cult of money and the dictatorship of an economy which is faceless and lacking any truly humane goal.” According to Pope Francis, a major reason behind the increase in social and economic woes worldwide “is in our relationship with money and our acceptance of its power over ourselves and our society.” He called for global financial reform that respects human dignity, helps the poor, promotes the common good and allows states to regulate markets.

The Vatican spokesman, Federico Lombardi, S.J., told journalists it was the pope’s “first forceful speech on the economic and financial crisis,” social justice and the attention needed to the world’s poor. Father Lombardi described the speech as “in continuity with his previous talks on these subjects” as Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, Argentina. “But as pope it is his first powerful and explicit speech,” touching on such themes in-depth, he said. The pope made his remarks during a speech welcoming four new ambassadors as they presented their credentials to the Vatican. Read more