Benedict Opens New Evangelization of Europe and America Office

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Pope Benedict XVI is continuing to fulfill his goal of re-evangelizing the West, Europe and the Americas.  His Holiness has opened a new office called the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization of the West.

Rome Reports has a short synopsis on this new office:

Papa Bene understands the rot and atrophy that is so apparent here in Europe and the America’s.  When we have bishops pushing for universal healthcare yet remain silent on the genocide of millions of innocent unborn children, there is cause for concern as to what priorities our bishops have.

From Reuters:

Pope Benedict on Monday announced the creation of a new Vatican department dedicated to rekindling the Catholic faith in rich, developed countries that are threatened with “the eclipse of a sense of God.”

The pope said he made his decision, which had been rumoured for weeks, to try to stop the “eclipse of God” in countries where a once deep-rooted faith was weakened by secularisation.

“Secularisation has produced a grave crisis in the sense of the Christian faith and of belonging to the Church,” he said, adding that the purpose of the new council would be to “find the right means to re-propose the perennial truth of the Gospel.

The new department will concentrate on efforts to re-awaken the faith in countries in Europe and North America where the Church attendance and the number of vocations to the priesthood has dropped dramatically in the past 50 years.

The new department is expected to be called “The Pontifical Council for New Evangelisation” and is expected to be headed by Italian Archbishop Rino Fisichella.

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  1. Well, given Fisichella’s controversial past, I think that you might be missing the point in saying that:

    “When we have bishops pushing for universal healthcare yet remain silent on the genocide of millions of innocent unborn children, there is cause for concern as to what priorities our bishops have.”

    In fact, I’m not sure that one can point to anything concretely that Benedict has done or said in the past few years that could indicate that he is particularly concerned with the “priorities our bishops have.”

    Fisichella, for his part, is associated with “Communion and Liberation,” which has a highly ‘pneumatic,’ somewhat anti-legalist approach to things (which might explain his stance in regard to the Brazil abortion case), and they are not exactly as critical of radical secularism as some might like. Moreover, at least among those C-L-ers I have known, they have a preference for a Balthasarian “razing the bastions” approach to the institutional Church. This preference is not to be confused with liberal protestantism, to be sure, but it is externally focused and ever ready to shed certain institutional baggages at a moment’s notice….

    The pope’s general approach, moreover, has been one of rapprochement with those who are fearful that the better values of European social democracy are fast losing any sort of institutional safeguard in the economic and political domains.

    He proposes the Church as the last bastion for the support of these values. I suspect that Fisichella would likewise take such an approach.

    I would, personally, prefer a more radical critique of contemporary secularist pieties, and more internal ecclesial “housecleaning,” but, given what I have said, I doubt that this will be the approach or concern of this new pontifical council.

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