It had been a long Thursday, and Brooke Paris couldn’t wait to take off her heels, peel off her contacts and wipe off her make-up. She changed into her pajamas, climbed into bed and opened her MacBook to the pope’s new apostolic exhortation.
These men, our brothers in Christ, gathered together to learn about the Catholic Watchmen movement that has begun in this archdiocese. They accepted the challenge to become Catholic Watchmen, pledged to exercise the seven disciplines of the Catholic Watchmen movement and to support each other, and they were initiated as Catholic Watchmen by Bishop Cozzens.
In his recently released exhortation, “Amoris Laetitia” (“The Joy of Love”), Pope Francis affirms the family as the foundational unit of society, the place where children are nurtured and formed in love and where spouses grow in self-giving. “The welfare of the family,” the Holy Father says, “is decisive for the future of the world and that of the Church.”
Since the early 20th century, Catholics in the United States have generously sent and supported missionaries all over the world. These efforts made it possible for God’s word to be seen and heard. This support allowed the sacraments to be celebrated in some of the most remote places on earth. The faith was handed on to new generations of seekers. We have played a vital role in training future leaders of the Church in mission areas.
Father Thomas Byles was 42 when he boarded the Titanic with his second-class ticket and portable altar stone. He had made arrangements with Captain Edward Smith to secure space on the ocean liner to celebrate Mass. Even on vacation a priest is never off duty, he knew, but the Catholic convert would have it no other way.
Reliable sources have informed me that for the millennial generation Bill Nye is a figure of great importance, due to his widely-watched program from the 1990’s called “Bill Nye the Science Guy.” Evidently, he taught a large swath of American youth the fundamentals of experimental science and became for them a sort of paragon of reason. Well, I’ll take their word for it.
When the bishops of Minnesota had breakfast with Gov. Mark Dayton and met with legislators at the State Capitol in mid-March, they weren’t just “keeping up appearances.” Beyond the pleasantries and the occasional photo-op, the day was a powerful encapsulation of the mission of the Minnesota Catholic Conference: to protect human dignity and advance the common good by living out the Church’s right and responsibility to participate in public conversation about laws and policies.
The Catholic Watchmen movement was formally launched at the archdiocesan men’s conference Feb. 27. More than 1,600 men stood up and pledged that they would work hard to provide, protect and lead in their families and parishes. It truly was a moving moment to see that many men stand in solidarity and conviction concerning their Catholic faith.