WM14 – Why Prayer Matters pt. 1- Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 14  Why Prayer Matters – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode with Archbishop Lucas we begin the conversation on why prayer matters?

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy. –

St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Manuscrits autobiographiques, C 25r.

 

Libreria Editrice Vaticana. Catechism of the Catholic Church (Kindle Locations 14417-14418). United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Kindle Edition.

From Pope Benedict XVI, Wednesday Audience, May 11, 2011

Dear brothers and sisters, we learn to stay more in front of God, God who has revealed himself in Jesus Christ, we learn to recognize in the silence, deep within ourselves, the voice that calls us and leads us to the depths of our existence , the source of life, the source of salvation for us to go beyond the limit of our lives and open ourselves to the extent of God, our relationship with Him who is Infinite Love. 

Dear brothers and sisters, let us learn to pause longer before God, who revealed himself in Jesus Christ, let us learn to recognize in silence, in our own hearts, his voice that calls us and leads us back to the depths of our existence, to the source of life, to the source of salvation, to enable us to go beyond the limitations of our life and to open ourselves to God’s dimension, to the relationship with him, which is Infinite Love.

 

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM-Special – The Clerical Abuse Crisis and the Response by the Bishops – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Special Episode – The Clerical Abuse Crisis and the Response by the Bishops – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode, Archbishop Lucas addresses the Clerical Abuse Crisis now plaguing the Roman Catholic Church and the deeply disturbing behavior of the former Cardinal of the Archdiocese of Washington D.C.,Theodore McCarrick.  He also discusses the allegations of the former Papal Nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, that the Holy See, and in particular Pope Francis, was aware of  McCarrick’s actions, yet allowed him to maintain a high profile role in the Church.

Archbishop Lucas also speaks of the need to protect the young and the vulnerable, as well as the concerns for seminarians and the state of our seminary system in the United States. He unequivocally states that we should not be afraid of the truth in dealing with this serious situation.  He reiterates the vital need for transparency in this matter and the necessity of listening deeply to the pain brought about by this grave and disturbing sin.  He joins with his brother bishops in their call for answers to the questions brought forward by this issue in order to restore trust,  reestablish integrity, and bring about healing, through Jesus Christ, to all those touched by this crisis.

August 25-26, 2018

Dear Brothers and Sisters Christ,

News in recent weeks has shown that a number of bishops and priests, over many years, have been personally responsible for the sins and crimes of sexual abuse of minors and the abuse of power. Many have been hurt and shamed by this abuse. This hurt and shame are enduring because they took place where people should have been safe and respected. My shame is deepened by the knowledge that so many in positions of responsibility and trust ignored the cries of the victims and turned away when those who are so dear to the Lord needed their protection and care.

Several days ago, I met with a representative group of our archdiocesan priests. We shared experiences of the pain and anger of our parishioners. We spoke of our own desire for proper accountability and for healing in the Church. Like so many of you, my brother priests are hurt and demoralized by what we have heard. Please let me encourage us all to turn to Christ and beg his companionship in these days. I am committing to fast and pray each Thursday, for mercy and healing for the Church, and I have invited our priests to join me.

In addition, the priests have encouraged me in my commitment to insist with the other bishops of this country that there be structures put in place for judging allegations of misconduct on the part of bishops. All must be able to have confidence that there are transparent and effective ways for bishops to be held accountable for their actions.

Here in the Archdiocese of Omaha, we remain committed to the protection of children, young people, and vulnerable adults. We remain committed to healing for victims of past abuse. In cooperation with members of law enforcement, we remain committed to responding deliberately and professionally to any claims of abuse. Anyone concerned about the actions of clergy or any Church worker should contact our Manager of Victim Outreach and Prevention, Mary Beth Hanus, at 402-827-3798 or toll-free at 1-888-808-9055.

Be assured of my prayers for all of you in the days ahead and of my gratitude for the privilege of serving as your archbishop.

 

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Most Reverend George J. Lucas
Archbishop of Omaha

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM12 – Why Confirmation Matters pt. 2 – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 12  Why Confirmation Matters – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode with Archbishop Lucas we continue the conversation about the action of the Holy Spirit and why the Sacrament of Confirmation matters?

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1309 Preparation for Confirmation should aim at leading the Christian toward a more intimate union with Christ and a more lively familiarity with the Holy Spirit – his actions, his gifts, and his biddings – in order to be more capable of assuming the apostolic responsibilities of Christian life. To this end catechesis for Confirmation should strive to awaken a sense of belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ, the universal Church as well as the parish community. The latter bears special responsibility for the preparation of confirmands.127

1310 To receive Confirmation one must be in a state of grace. One should receive the sacrament of Penance in order to be cleansed for the gift of the Holy Spirit. More intense prayer should prepare one to receive the strength and graces of the Holy Spirit with docility and readiness to act.128

1316 Confirmation perfects Baptismal grace; it is the sacrament which gives the Holy Spirit in order to root us more deeply in the divine filiation, incorporate us more firmly into Christ, strengthen our bond with the Church, associate us more closely with her mission, and help us bear witness to the Christian faith in words accompanied by deeds.

1317 Confirmation, like Baptism, imprints a spiritual mark or indelible character on the Christian’s soul; for this reason one can receive this sacrament only once in one’s life.

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM11 – Why Confirmation Matters – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 11  Why Confirmation Matters – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode with Archbishop Lucas we begin the conversation about the action of the Holy Spirit and why the Sacrament of Confirmation matters?

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

1309 Preparation for Confirmation should aim at leading the Christian toward a more intimate union with Christ and a more lively familiarity with the Holy Spirit – his actions, his gifts, and his biddings – in order to be more capable of assuming the apostolic responsibilities of Christian life. To this end catechesis for Confirmation should strive to awaken a sense of belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ, the universal Church as well as the parish community. The latter bears special responsibility for the preparation of confirmands.127

1310 To receive Confirmation one must be in a state of grace. One should receive the sacrament of Penance in order to be cleansed for the gift of the Holy Spirit. More intense prayer should prepare one to receive the strength and graces of the Holy Spirit with docility and readiness to act.128

1316 Confirmation perfects Baptismal grace; it is the sacrament which gives the Holy Spirit in order to root us more deeply in the divine filiation, incorporate us more firmly into Christ, strengthen our bond with the Church, associate us more closely with her mission, and help us bear witness to the Christian faith in words accompanied by deeds.

1317 Confirmation, like Baptism, imprints a spiritual mark or indelible character on the Christian’s soul; for this reason one can receive this sacrament only once in one’s life.

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM10 – Why the Priesthood Matters – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 10  Why the Priesthood Matters – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode with Archbishop Lucas we begin the conversation about the Sacrament of Holy Orders and why the priesthood matters?

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

In the person of Christ the Head . . .

1548 In the ecclesial service of the ordained minister, it is Christ himself who is present to his Church as Head of his Body, Shepherd of his flock, high priest of the redemptive sacrifice, Teacher of Truth. This is what the Church means by saying that the priest, by virtue of the sacrament of Holy Orders, acts in persona Christi Capitis:23

It is the same priest, Christ Jesus, whose sacred person his minister truly represents. Now the minister, by reason of the sacerdotal consecration which he has received, is truly made like to the high priest and possesses the authority to act in the power and place of the person of Christ himself (virtute ac persona ipsius Christi).24Christ is the source of all priesthood: the priest of the old law was a figure of Christ, and the priest of the new law acts in the person of Christ.25

1549 Through the ordained ministry, especially that of bishops and priests, the presence of Christ as head of the Church is made visible in the midst of the community of believers.26 In the beautiful expression of St. Ignatius of Antioch, the bishop is typos tou Patros: he is like the living image of God the Father.27

1550 This presence of Christ in the minister is not to be understood as if the latter were preserved from all human weaknesses, the spirit of domination, error, even sin. The power of the Holy Spirit does not guarantee all acts of ministers in the same way. While this guarantee extends to the sacraments, so that even the minister’s sin cannot impede the fruit of grace, in many other acts the minister leaves human traces that are not always signs of fidelity to the Gospel and consequently can harm the apostolic fruitfulness of the Church.

1551 This priesthood is ministerial. “That office . . . which the Lord committed to the pastors of his people, is in the strict sense of the term a service.”28 It is entirely related to Christ and to men. It depends entirely on Christ and on his unique priesthood; it has been instituted for the good of men and the communion of the Church. The sacrament of Holy Orders communicates a “sacred power” which is none other than that of Christ. The exercise of this authority must therefore be measured against the model of Christ, who by love made himself the least and the servant of all.29 “The Lord said clearly that concern for his flock was proof of love for him.”30

. . . “in the name of the whole Church”

1552 The ministerial priesthood has the task not only of representing Christ – Head of the Church – before the assembly of the faithful, but also of acting in the name of the whole Church when presenting to God the prayer of the Church, and above all when offering the Eucharistic sacrifice.31

1553 “In the name of the whole Church” does not mean that priests are the delegates of the community. The prayer and offering of the Church are inseparable from the prayer and offering of Christ, her head; it is always the case that Christ worships in and through his Church. The whole Church, the Body of Christ, prays and offers herself “through him, with him, in him,” in the unity of the Holy Spirit, to God the Father. The whole Body, caput et membra, prays and offers itself, and therefore those who in the Body are especially his ministers are called ministers not only of Christ, but also of the Church. It is because the ministerial priesthood represents Christ that it can represent the Church.

 

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM9 – “GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE” by Pope Francis pt. 3 – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 9  “GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE”  by Pope Francis pt.3 – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode, Archbishop Lucas continues the conversation on various aspects of the April 2018 Apostolic Exhortation “Gaudete et Exsultate (Rejoice and be glad)” given to the faithful by Pope Francis.  We conclude our conversation with an exploration of Chapter 5, “Spiritual Combat, Vigilance and Discernment.”

From GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE

CHAPTER FIVE

SPIRITUAL COMBAT, VIGILANCE AND DISCERNMENT

158. The Christian life is a constant battle. We need strength and courage to withstand the temptations of the devil and to proclaim the Gospel. This battle is sweet, for it allows us to rejoice each time the Lord triumphs in our lives.

COMBAT AND VIGILANCE

159. We are not dealing merely with a battle against the world and a worldly mentality that would deceive us and leave us dull and mediocre, lacking in enthusiasm and joy. Nor can this battle be reduced to the struggle against our human weaknesses and proclivities (be they laziness, lust, envy, jealousy or any others). It is also a constant struggle against the devil, the prince of evil. Jesus himself celebrates our victories. He rejoiced when his disciples made progress in preaching the Gospel and overcoming the opposition of the evil one: “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven” (Lk 10:18).

More than a myth

160. We will not admit the existence of the devil if we insist on regarding life by empirical standards alone, without a supernatural understanding. It is precisely the conviction that this malign power is present in our midst that enables us to understand how evil can at times have so much destructive force. True enough, the biblical authors had limited conceptual resources for expressing certain realities, and in Jesus’ time epilepsy, for example, could easily be confused with demonic possession. Yet this should not lead us to an oversimplification that would conclude that all the cases related in the Gospel had to do with psychological disorders and hence that the devil does not exist or is not at work. He is present in the very first pages of the Scriptures, which end with God’s victory over the devil.[120] Indeed, in leaving us the Our Father, Jesus wanted us to conclude by asking the Father to “deliver us from evil”. That final word does not refer to evil in the abstract; a more exact translation would be “the evil one”. It indicates a personal being who assails us. Jesus taught us to ask daily for deliverance from him, lest his power prevail over us.

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM8 – “GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE” by Pope Francis pt. 2 – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 8  “GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE”  by Pope Francis pt.2 – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode, Archbishop Lucas continues the conversation on various aspects of the April 2018 Apostolic Exhortation “Gaudete et Exsultate (Rejoice and be glad)” given to the faithful by Pope Francis.  We conclude our conversation of Chapter 2, “The Two Subtle Enemies of Holiness,” with the subject of “contemporary Pelagianism.”   We then discuss Chapter 3 and 4, entitled “In the Light of the Master” and “Sign’s of Holiness in Today’s World.”

From GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE

63. There can be any number of theories about what constitutes holiness, with various explanations and distinctions. Such reflection may be useful, but nothing is more enlightening than turning to Jesus’ words and seeing his way of teaching the truth. Jesus explained with great simplicity what it means to be holy when he gave us the Beatitudes (cf. Mt 5:3-12; Lk 6:20-23). The Beatitudes are like a Christian’s identity card. So if anyone asks: “What must one do to be a good Christian?”, the answer is clear. We have to do, each in our own way, what Jesus told us in the Sermon on the Mount.[66] In the Beatitudes, we find a portrait of the Master, which we are called to reflect in our daily lives.

64. The word “happy” or “blessed” thus becomes a synonym for “holy”. It expresses the fact that those faithful to God and his word, by their self-giving, gain true happiness.

 

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM7 – “GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE” by Pope Francis pt.1 – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 7  “GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE”  by Pope Francis pt.1 – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode, Archbishop Lucas reflects on the April 2018 Apostolic Exhortation “Gaudete et Exsultate (Rejoice and be glad)” given to the faithful by Pope Francis.  We discuss Chapter 1, entitled “The Call to Holiness” which brings us the example of the saints as role models in holiness and how we too are called this type of sanctity while responding to God’s “personal mission” for us.  We also begin the conversation on Chapter 2, “The Two Subtle Enemies of Holiness,” in which his Excellency helps us to understand “contemporary Gnosticism.”

From GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE

32. Do not be afraid of holiness. It will take away none of your energy, vitality or joy. On the contrary, you will become what the Father had in mind when he created you, and you will be faithful to your deepest self. To depend on God sets us free from every form of enslavement and leads us to recognize our great dignity. We see this in Saint Josephine Bakhita: “Abducted and sold into slavery at the tender age of seven, she suffered much at the hands of cruel masters. But she came to understand the profound truth that God, and not man, is the true Master of every human being, of every human life. This experience became a source of great wisdom for this humble daughter of Africa”.[30]

33. To the extent that each Christian grows in holiness, he or she will bear greater fruit for our world. The bishops of West Africa have observed that “we are being called in the spirit of the New Evangelization to be evangelized and to evangelize through the empowering of all you, the baptized, to take up your roles as salt of the earth and light of the world wherever you find yourselves”.[31]

34. Do not be afraid to set your sights higher, to allow yourself to be loved and liberated by God. Do not be afraid to let yourself be guided by the Holy Spirit. Holiness does not make you less human, since it is an encounter between your weakness and the power of God’s grace. For in the words of León Bloy, when all is said and done, “the only great tragedy in life, is not to become a saint”.[32]

For more episodes in this series visit the

Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM6 – Baptism: Liberation and Communion – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 6  “Baptism: Liberation and Communion” – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode, we continue our conversation on why baptism matters.  We will discuss, among other things, the experience of exorcism contained within the rite, the blessing of the water, and the action of baptism with the invocation of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and that Trinitarian formula is matters.

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church

 

The sacramental bond of the unity of Christians

1271 Baptism constitutes the foundation of communion among all Christians, including those who are not yet in full communion with the Catholic Church: “For men who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in some, though imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church. Justified by faith in Baptism, [they] are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as brothers by the children of the Catholic Church.”81 “Baptism therefore constitutes the sacramental bond of unity existing among all who through it are reborn.”82

For more episodes in this series visit the
Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

WM5 – Baptism: Why the Parish and the Saints Matter – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast

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Episode 5  “Baptism:  Why the Parish and the Saints Matter” – Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas

In this episode, we continue our conversation on why baptism matters.  We will discuss, among other things, the importance of the parish community and the need to support parents in witness and catechesis.  As we enter more deeply into the baptismal rite, we talk about the support of the saints through their presence and intercession.

From the Sharing the Light of Faith 

117.  CATECHESIS FOR BAPTISM:

Catechesis for Baptism is directed primarily to adults — adult candidates for Baptism and the parents and godparents of infants who are to be baptized.

Baptismal catechesis involves the community of the faithful, who share their faith with those being catechized.  Adult catechumens and the parents of children to be baptized alike need the community’s prayers, witness, and support.  Pre- and post-baptismal catechesis may take many forms, such as prayer, fasting, service, and instruction.

Baptismal catechesis centers on the Father’s love, the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus the Son, the cleansing of orignal and person sin and the gift of the Spirit to the Church.  It includes proclaiming God’s word, so that those called may respond in faith.

Preparation for the Baptism of infants is a “teachable” moment, when the parish community can encourage parents to rexamine the meaning which faith has in their lives.  In offering catechesis to parents and sponsors, the Church shows its love for and eagerness to support them as well as their children.

For more episodes in this series visit the
Why it Matters: An Exploration of Faith with Archbishop George Lucas Podcast page

For more teachings and information about Archbishop George J. Lucas of the Archdiocese of Omaha, visit:   archomaha.org

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