The door of faith (Acts 14:27) is always open for us, ushering us into the life of communion with God and offering entry into his Church. It is possible to cross that threshold when the word of God is proclaimed and the heart allows itself to be shaped by transforming grace. To enter through that door is to set out on a journey that lasts a lifetime. – Benedict XVI, Porta Fidei, 1
What is faith? Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. (Hebrews 11:1) Faith is mans response to God, who reveals himself and gives himself to man, at the same time bringing man a superabundant light as he searches for the ultimate meaning of his life. (CCC 26) By faith, man completely submits his intellect and his will to God. (CCC 143) Faith is the theological virtue by which we believe in God and believe all that he has said and revealed to us, and that Holy Church proposes for our belief, because he is truth itself. (CCC 1814)
Some Facts About the Year of Faith: Initiated by Pope Benedict XVI in his apostolic letter titled Porta Fidei (The Door of Faith). Dates: October 11, 2012 – November 24, 2013 This is the second time to celebrate a Year of Faith – Pope Paul VI declared a Year of Faith in 1967. This Year of Faith marks the 50 th anniversary of Vatican II and the 20 th anniversary of the release of the Catechism of the Catholic Church
A Christian may never think of belief as a private act. Faith is choosing to stand with the Lord so as to live with him. This standing with him points towards an understanding of the reasons for believing. Faith, precisely because it is a free act, also demands social responsibility for what one believes. The Church on the day of Pentecost demonstrates with utter clarity this public dimension of believing and proclaiming ones faith fearlessly to every person. It is the gift of the Holy Spirit that makes us fit for mission and strengthens our witness, making it frank and courageous. - Benedict XVI, Porta Fidei, 10
Who said this? …we consider attentively the world of today, which is so busy with politics and controversies in the economic order that it does not find time to attend to the care of spiritual reality, with which the Church's Magisterium is concerned. Such a way of acting is certainly not right, and must justly be disapproved.
Who said this? …we consider attentively the world of today, which is so busy with politics and controversies in the economic order that it does not find time to attend to the care of spiritual reality, with which the Church's Magisterium is concerned. Such a way of acting is certainly not right, and must justly be disapproved. - John XXIII, Homily to Open the Second Vatican Council on October 11, 1962
Importance of Reviewing Vatican II Documents Even if the Council does not deal expressly with the faith, it talks about it on every page, it recognizes its vital and supernatural character, it assumes it to be whole and strong, and it builds upon its teachings. We need only recall some of the Councils statements in order to realize the essential importance that the Council, consistent with the doctrinal tradition of the Church, attributes to the faith, the true faith, which has Christ for its source and the Churchs Magisterium for its channel – Paul VI, General Audience on March 8, 1967
With the passing of the years, the Council documents have lost nothing of their value or brilliance. They need to be read correctly, to be widely known and taken to heart as important and normative texts of the Magisterium, within the Church's Tradition…I feel more than ever in duty bound to point to the Council as the great grace bestowed on the Church in the twentieth century: there we find a sure compass by which to take our bearings in the century now beginning. – John Paul II, Novo Millennio Ineunte (2001), 57
Plenary Indulgence "During the Year of Faith, which will last from 11 October 2012 to 24 November 2013, Plenary Indulgence for the temporal punishment of sins, imparted by the mercy of God and applicable also to the souls of deceased faithful, may be obtained by all faithful who, truly penitent, take Sacramental Confession and the Eucharist and pray in accordance with the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff.
Plenary Indulgence – Four Ways Attend three sermons at a mission, or three lessons on the Acts of the Council or the Catechism Make a pilgrimage to a papal basilica, Christian catacomb, a cathedral church or a holy site designated by the local ordinary for the Year of Faith (Shrine of the True Cross in Dickinson is the closest site established by Cardinal DiNardo). On a day designated by the local bishop, participate in a solemn celebration of the Eucharist or the Liturgy of the Hours, while adding the Profession of Faith Visiting a baptistery or place of ones baptism and renewing their baptismal promises in proper form
Goals for the Year of Faith: to profess the faith in fullness and with renewed conviction to intensify the celebration of the faith in the liturgy to make witness of life may grow in credibility. To rediscover the content of the faith that is professed, celebrated, lived and prayed, and to reflect on the act of faith, is a task that every believer must make his own, especially in the course of this Year. - Benedict XVI, Porta Fidei, 9
Session Topics and Dates 11/29/12 - The Church, the Light of the Nations 1/3/13 - The Word of God: Interpreting Scripture and Tradition 2/7/13 - Let Us Pray: The Liturgical Life of the Church 3/7/13 - Call to Conversion: Sin and Penance 4/4/13 - Know Yourself: The Relationship Between Faith and Reason 5/2/13 - City on a Hill: The Church in the Modern World