Monday, November 21, 2011

Novena of Bl. James, Day 5

Synod of Bishops 2012 document (Lineamenta), n. 13, 23:

“The synod fathers gave particular attention to proclaiming the Word of God to future generations. ‘Often we encounter in them a spontaneous openness to hearing the Word of God and a sincere desire to know Jesus....Concern for young people calls for courage and clarity in the message we proclaim…witnesses and teachers who can walk with them,.…[and] approaches to Christian initiation which, through listening to the Word, celebrating the Eucharist and the communal living of love and fellowship, will lead to a growth in faith.’”
“The first evangelization began on the day of Pentecost, when the Apostles, gathered together in prayer with the Mother of Christ, received the Holy Spirit. In this way, Mary, who according to the words of the Archangel is "full of grace", was present during apostolic evangelization and continues to be present in those places where the successors of the Apostles strive to proclaim the Gospel.”

Bl. James writes:

"In August 1907, he organized three Bible Sundays. He explained [the Bible] in a catechetical fashion and with catechetical applications. In those days the Gospel was rarely read and only by a few people, just as few people received Communion. There was a peculiar kind of conviction that the Gospel could not be given to the people, much less the Bible. The reading of the Gospel was almost the exclusive right of non-Catholics who gave it a private interpretation.

There was a threefold need:
  • For the Gospel to enter every household together with the Catechism. The Gospel had to be interpreted according to the mind of the Church: thus [supplemented] with notes of the complete Catechism: faith, morals, worship. – Since people no longer attended Sunday Vespers there was a need to explain the Gospel every Sunday during Mass. This is what he did in the Cathedral of Alba, as soon as he was ordained. Many parishes then took up this custom. Out of this came the Gospel with catechetical notes.
  • For the book of the Gospel to become the model and inspiration of every Catholic publication.
  • For the Gospel to be honored and properly venerated. Preaching must be more Gospel-centered and Gospel-modeled: above all, [one must] live the Gospel in one’s mind, heart and actions."

Prayer: O God, who raised up in  your Church Blessed James Alberione, priest, to proclaim your Son as the Way, the Truth and the Life through the many forms of communication, grant, we beseech you, that we may follow his example and devote ourselves to preaching the Gospel to all nations. Through Christ our Lord.

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