by Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY — Eastern Catholic churches must strengthen their liturgical identity, especially given ongoing conflicts in many of the homelands of those churches and the continuing migration of Eastern Catholics to countries where most Catholics belong to the Latin rite, said a Vatican official.

Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, prefect of the Congregation for Eastern Churches, spoke at the opening of a conference marking the 25th anniversary of an instruction from the congregation that urged Eastern Catholics to learn more about their liturgies and to exercise great care in translating the texts and modifying the liturgies. He said Eastern liturgies are a treasure belonging to the entire Catholic Church and bind it closely to the Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox churches as well.

Cardinal Sandri told conference participants Feb. 16 that Catholic, Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Christians "feel the wound of still not being able to sit around the one eucharistic table," but they also know that "we are heirs of a common treasure and very often of the same texts for celebrating the different liturgies."

So, he pleaded with the Eastern Catholic churches "to avoid solitary escapes in pursuit of reforms that do not take into account the heritage shared with the Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox churches."

The cardinal repeated the instruction's call for Eastern Catholics belonging to the same ritual families — the Alexandrian, Antiochian, Armenian, Byzantine and Chaldean — to work together in studying their rites, developing educational programs for their faithful, translating texts and weighing any possible reforms before moving ahead with them.

Continue reading the full article at ncronline.org.

 


Teachings of Christ

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:37-40 ESV)

Ascension

You ascended in glory, O Christ our God, * granting joy to Your disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit; * through this blessing they were assured * that You are the Son of God * the Redeemer of the world! (Troparion)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

When You fulfilled the divine plan for us * and united things on earth with things in heaven, * You ascended in glory, O Christ our God, * in no way departing from us but remaining inseparable, * and crying out to those who love You: “I am with you, and no one is against you.” (Kontakion)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you." (Proverbs 3:1,2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Do not pray that things may be according to your desires, for your desires are not always in keeping with the will of God. It is better to pray as you were taught, saying: "Thy will be done" (Matthew 6:10). Pray in this way about all things, for He always desires what is good and profitable for your soul, whereas you do not always seek it.

Saint Nilus of Mount Sinai: "153 Texts on Prayer"