Friday, 2 March 2007

Year of St Paul?

On ZENIT yesterday:
Cardinal Andrea Cordero Lanza di Montezemolo, archpriest of the Basilicia of St. Paul Outside the Walls, said this at a press conference Wednesday. In the meeting the cardinal presented the archaeological research which made it possible to rediscover what is traditionally accepted as St. Paul's sarcophagus under the basilica's main altar.

Cardinal Lanza commented that the idea to dedicate the year 2008-2009, beginning and ending on June 29, the solemnity of St. Peter and Paul, is being considered. The year would also coincide with the second millennium of the Apostle Paul's birth.

The cardinal added that he has mentioned the idea to Benedict XVI, who received it favorably.

However, "no decision has been taken," he stated.
I think this is a great idea. What better springboard for New Evangelisation than a year consecrated to studying St Paul, and to invoking his prayer for radical and courageous Catholic Evangelisation today? When I was a student at University, I always thought St Paul was more for Evangelicals. After all, ever since Luther, St Paul's letters have been the mainstay of Protestant theology. But then when I was in seminary, I systematically read the letters of St Paul as lectio divina - and it opened up a most wonderful new perspective. When I read St Paul now I see how central the person of Christ is, such that we become Christ himself. On my Ordination card I quoted St Paul's letter to the Galatians: "I have been crucified with Christ. Now it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me..."(Gal 2.19-20). Also the figure of Bl Elizabeth of the Trinity, who based her spiritual life around the identification of the Christian as being 'the praise of God's glory'. Our whole life is to be a glorification of God. That is our sole purpose and vocation - to glorify God. Maybe we could write to the Holy Father and support this project for a year of St Paul?

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