Any journalist worth his or her salt will tell you, consistently, that newspapers — especially in their new and often smaller form these days — never have enough space for news.
At The Record we naturally emphasize local stories about the Archdiocese of Louisville, its parishes, its schools, its leaders. We try to find room for stories of national and international import; and if a story of major significance from the Vatican and the Holy Father occurs, it will naturally find its way to our front page.
But there are times when, quite simply, there are many more stories than there are column inches in the newspaper. As a result, some stories find their places on inside pages; sometimes they don’t get as much attention as they should. And sometimes, unfortunately, they don’t get into the news pages at all.
It may be the case that, despite frequent mention in stories out of Rome during the recent Synod of Bishops, the “Year of Faith” initiated by Pope Benedict XVI may not have received as much attention as it might have. Or should have.
The pope announced creation of the Year of Faith in the spring of last year. The designated year actually began Oct. 11 and will continue through next Nov. 24. Here is some information about these special months that might have escaped attention:
Pope Benedict launched the Year of Faith on the 50th anniversary of the start of the Second Vatican Council. In doing so, he called on Catholics the world over “to revive the authentic spirit” of Vatican II by presenting the church’s ancient teachings to an increasingly Godless modern world.
The Year of Faith, the Holy Father said, would help profess the church’s “yearning to announce Christ again to contemporary man” as part of the New Evangelization. That effort, he said, “needs to be built on a concrete and precise basis, and this basis is the documents of the Second Vatican Council.”
In response to the Year of Faith proclamation, more than 100,000 people have pledged to Holy Cross Family Ministries in Easton, Mass., that they will faithfully pray the rosary during the special year.
On of the year’s major events will occur on the Feast of Corpus Christi, June 2, when an hour of Eucharistic adoration will be celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI and people all across the world — at the same time.
The pope, in announcing the Year of Faith, urged Catholics the world over to “pick up the Bible” and read it during the coming months. He said the year is intended to be a “special time to reinvigorate our personal faith journey and share our faith with others.”
There will be a “Year of Faith Concert” in St. Peter’s Square on June 22.
Special celebrations will be held on Sept. 29 as part of the year. That date will mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
Prayers and services will be held in Rome — and elsewhere around the world — on Oct. 13 dedicated to the “presence of Mary in the Church,” according to the Vatican.
And there will be closing celebrations on Nov. 24, the details of which are still in the making.
Here’s the thing: the Year of Faith presents an opportunity for Catholics everywhere to rededicate themselves to learning about their faith and to sharing the faith we hold so dearly with others. There are dozens of special opportunities to do just that — to become part of the new evangelization — and those are published in Bulletin Board and Around the Archdiocese sections of The Record each week.
During a recent address dedicated to the Year of Faith, Pope Benedict noted that “the desire to really know God, that is, to see the face of God, exists in everyone…”
We can see the face of God in others when we extend a hand to help them. We can recognize the presence of God in our own lives when we share his love with those around us. We can use the Year of Faith to renew our efforts, to recognize once again the strengths of our faith.