Manual The Legacy of Pope John Paul II: The Central Teaching of His 14 Encyclical Letters

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Sample Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7. With review questions at the end of each chapter, this study is ideal for both group and individual study, and is perfect for learning how to answer contemporary objections to the Sacraments. He is also a professor of Sacred Scripture at St. John Vianney Theological Seminary. Sample Pages: 1 2 3 4 5.

Written prior to the Synod worldwide gathering of Bishops in on the very same topic, these essays are geared to helping all people understand the unique and challenging task of the successors of the apostles. Joseph A. Leon J. Suprenant is the president of Catholics United for the Faith and the editor of Lay Witness , a monthly magazine for lay Catholics. He has the central role in every catechetical event.

Catechists and those being catechized are invited to cooperate with him in learning under his grace. Scholars and teachers at multiple institutions have come together to present a unified message in the communication of faith and the process of catechesis. This volume explores their methodology and teaching for catechetical instruction, revealing a plan for both the pre-Christian initiate and the Catholic student of religion.

This book not only provides the reader with a sound perspective on the past, it also offers insight into the present state of the Church and the outlook for the future. History, canon law, ecclesiastical and papal documents, and Scripture are mined in this solid apologetic for a faith that is one, holy, Catholic, and apostolic.

James Likoudis is a former college instructor in history and government with 20 years of teaching experience in public and private education. A nationally known writer and lecturer on catechetics, sex education, and liturgy, he has published many articles on subjects of interest to the Catholic laity.

A convert to the Catholic Church in , Likoudis has since devoted a great deal of his efforts to foster the reunion of the Eastern Orthodox churches with the Catholic Church.

Review: The Legacy of Pope John Paul II by Alan Schreck : By Hand, With Heart

Likoudis is president-emeritus of Catholics United for the Faith. Kenneth D. Whitehead is a former career diplomat who served in Rome and the Middle East and as the chief of the Arabic Service of the Voice of America. For eight years he served as executive vice president of Catholics United for the Faith. He is the author of dozens of articles on political, moral, social, and theological issues, and has written a number of books. Educated at the University of Utah and the University of Paris, Whitehead holds an honorary doctorate in Christian letters from the Franciscan University of Steubenville.

In The Unchanging Heart of the Priesthood: A Faith Perspective on the Reality and Mystery of Priesthood in the Church , Father Thomas Acklin presents an apologetic for that which is immutable—that which cannot change since it is found in the unchanging heart of Christ. This book will encourage the heart of every priest and help the laity to understand and appreciate the reality and mystery of the priesthood in the Church. He was ordained a priest in and studied theology and psychology of religion at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium, where he earned the STD doctorate of sacred theology.

He undertook psychoanalytic training at the Belgian School of Psychoanalysis and graduated from the Pittsburgh Psychoanalytic Institute. Father Acklin then served as master of junior-professed monks for four years and as president-rector of Saint Vincent Seminary for 12 years. He is certified in the psychoanalysis of adults by the International Board of Accreditation and Certification in psychoanalysis and the National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis.

Currently, Father Acklin is professor of theology and psychology at Saint Vincent College and Saint Vincent Seminary, where he has taught since , and is a faculty member of the Pittsburgh Psychoanalytic Institute and Foundation. While some focused on governing the Church and addressing challenges from the world, others recognized their primary responsibility to proclaim and teach the Gospel. The encyclical letter has been, in modern times, the instrument for popes to express their most important teaching—teachings that have lasting value for the Church, and often for the whole world.

The reflection questions and suggestions for further reading at the end of each chapter help facilitate a systematic study of the central teachings of this brilliant but pastoral pope, who conveyed the truth in love. They are likely to perpetuate John Paul's vision of the church for many decades. Once again we turn to you, our father. You left this earth in Easter time to join the Risen Christ, the Redeemer of every person, whom you have loved to much, whom you have showed to the world from the very first day of your pontificate and whom you have followed through the days of the passion.

You have now passed through the risen one into the father's bosom, in the communion of the Holy Spirit. We can only imagine your joy at meeting Mary to whom you devoted yourself as Totus tuus; as Peter whose successor you have called to be, the apostles, and all the saints, especially those you canonized. You have met your family, and so many friends. We are writing to say thank you once more from Europe and her bishops for the gift God gave us through you.

You have been "the prophet of a new Europe" and you have never hidden your "passionate concern" for our continent. You have spoken about Europe about a thousand times. You have looked upon Europe with the eyes of faith and wisdom: you have always grasped how dramatic its history has been, but at the same time you have shown us how God is present and active here. History will give ever clearer confirmation of your contribution to the collapse of the Berlin wall and to the recovery of a continent heating with "two lungs" as you have often said.

You have followed every step of the European Union has taken.

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You were concerned there should be strong foundation, not least the dignity of the human person. You have been allowed to the risk that Europe might became a closed fortress, concerned only with his own both welfare, rather than a continent whose stability allows it to improve mutual links with other regions of the world and to do more for justice and peace in the world and universal brotherhood. We know you suffered because there was no agreement on mentioning Christianity in the European Constitution: without the Gospel, Europe has not future, and her citizens will never discover, the truth, beauty, and love they desire.

We shall never forget your cry from the heart in Santiago: "Europe, open up your doors to Christ … Go back to yourself. Be yourself. Rediscover your origins. Revive your roots. Your fatherly heart has suffered because Christians are still divided. You have often addressed of with powerful word: "In a Europe which is on the path to political unity, can we ever accept that the very Church of Christ is a factor of disunion and discord?

Wouldn't this be one of the greatest scandal of our times? We still have a visit memory of what you said in Bucharest on 8th may , during the first visit made by a pope to a country with an Orthodox majority, when you met the patriarch Teoctist: "What can drive today's men and women to believe in Christ, if we keep on tearing up the seamless Tunic of the Church?

I have been striving for unity with all my strength and I shall keep on doing all I can until the end so it may be at the forefront among the main concerns of the Churches and of those who govern them through the apostolic Ministry. Most holy Father, thank you, on behalf of every one in Europe, because you have defended the dignity of the human person, because you have shown us life's meaning, because you believe in peace, because you more than anyone else have loved Christ, because you strengthened your brothers and sisters in the faith, because you have been solid support for the Church and for humanity, because you have lived as "the first servant of unity".

We thank you on behalf of all Europe's bishops and the Council of European Bishops' Conferences, whose activity you followed closely as long ago as the time you were Archbishop of Krakow and then as Pope. You wanted the Council to be reformed and developed, and gave it a new and significant authority. Dearest Father, we need you now more than ever so that Europe and her Church can respond to the call written for them in heaven.

We know that, in you, we have a special protector. We promise we shall never abandon the extra heritage you have left us. Given us your blessing once again, this time from Paradise. As the Russian Patriarch pointed out in a message to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, John Paul II's papacy defined a whole era in the life of the Roman Catholic Church and the global community at large; his personality, his books and ideas made a great impact on the course of history.

Patriarch Alexis II said he was hopeful that in the coming years, the feelings of mutual respect and brotherly Christian love would be restored to the relationship between the Roman Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church. He also said that he was praying to God for the repose of the deceased Pope's soul. The leader of the Russian Orthodox Church described John Paul II as a person committed to his Christian mission and ministry, with an ardent desire to bear public witness to the Gospel.

Even when gravely ill, the Pope tried to remain close to his flock. The humble way in which he endured all hardship, trusting in God's mercy, offered an inspiring example to many, remarked Alexis II. Metropolitan Cyril of Smolensk and Kaliningrad, head of the department of exterior church relations in the Moscow Patriarchate, has also forwarded a letter of condolences to Cardinal Ratzinger. According to the Metropolitan, the Russian Orthodox Church shares the Pope's views on many social issues, and is appreciative of his efforts to promote Christian values across the world and to revive the Christian community's role in enhancing spirituality and morality amid today's massive secularization.

He expressed hope that Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholic ministers would continue the Pope's efforts to reconcile the two Churches and have them put their differences behind them. The Council stands in solidarity with the Catholic community at this time. The Catholic Church has been a full member of the National Council of Churches since its inception in Much of that journey has taken place during the time of John Paul II and with his encouragement. He was a person of high integrity, deep faith, and profound discipleship.

The death of the Pope is important for all Christians, whether or not they are Catholic. We should also remember his visit to Australia, when he addressed the situation of indigenous Australians. There is no denying his deep personal piety, and the courage, faith and fortitude he showed as a Christian pastor and bishop in the face of both Nazism and Communism. We strongly supported his witness in favour of life, and against the 'culture of death' exemplified by abortion and euthanasia.

He went on to say, "We admired his readiness to forgive his would-be assassin early in his papacy, his commitment to evangelisation and the global Church, his promotion of peace, social justice and ecological concern, and his support for interaction and co-operation with other Christian churches and groups, including those of the Evangelical tradition.

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Despite differences between Catholics and Evangelicals, the Evangelical Alliance recognises that John Paul was committed, as we are, to credal Christianity. As such, in many instances he offered a welcome corrective to the forces of scepticism, secularism and theological liberalism, which threaten to undermine both the integrity of the Church and the effectiveness of its mission in the world.

His gifts, energy and vision will be missed both within and beyond the Roman Catholic community. The world community is the poorer for his passing. The Evangelical Alliance was a founding member of the World Evangelical Fellowship, which now has member Alliances, together representing million evangelicals worldwide. Speaking on behalf of the 75 million-strong Alliance which includes churches in countries, Rev. His travels to different parts of the world to encourage the faithful and sometimes challenge the forces of evil will remain a great contribution in a broken world which has needed strong voices for transformation.

John Paul II’s vision of family and marriage for the New Evangelization

While the Reformed leaders acknowledged that they would not agree with Pope John Paul on all ethical issues they made it clear there were some major issues where they shared the same conviction, including his general concern for human dignity, his opposition to the Iraq war, and his support of religious freedom and economic justice. The World Alliance of Reformed Churches stands together with the millions of Christians mourning his death.

We give thanks for a ministry in which, as a priest, bishop, and head of the Roman Catholic Church, he sought to bear witness to the gospel in the contemporary world. He clearly valued being with people in their circumstances, sharing in their experiences and struggles. While we may not have agreed on every social ethical stance, the papacy of Pope John Paul II has emphasized a clear stand on some major issues which are shared by the World Alliance of Reformed Churches. These include concern for human dignity in general, peace, resistance to war for example the Iraq war , religious freedom and economic justice.

We recall with thanks events such as the two days of Prayer in Assisi held 10 years apart that were organized to demonstrate a value for inter-religious solidarity for peace that had his personal stamp of leadership. Under his long papacy the World Alliance of Reformed Churches has carried out two phases of the Reformed — Roman Catholic dialogues which have brought increased understanding between the Reformed and Roman Catholic families. In addition, it was under his papacy that we held a trilateral consultation on Indulgences in which Reformed and Lutheran representatives engaged in discussion with Roman Catholic counterparts — a discussion which until then was not possible for centuries.

In terms of ecumenical gains during his papacy, we celebrate more than what was achieved in Reformed - Roman Catholic relationships. The Catholic-Lutheran agreement on central aspects of a doctrine that divided the church in the 16th century the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification, and his invitation to a reflection on how the papal ministry can be a ministry of Christian unity are only two examples of what we are thankful for. As we thank God for his life and contributions, we pray for the Roman Catholic family through these difficult times.

On behalf of the leadership and member churches of the World Alliance of Reformed Churches we offer our condolences as we mourn the death of a pope who has been a good leader for our world — one who knew and understood suffering, and who walked with those who suffer all over the world. World Alliance of Reformed Churches Rev. Clifton Kirkpatrick President Rev. Setri Nyomi General Secretary. With the death of Pope John Paul II the world has lost a spiritual leader and statesman of towering stature.

His courage in speaking for those who have no voice, his rock-like stand for the values in which he believed, and the tireless way in which he carried out his worldwide pastoral duties, have been an inspiration to millions. His life has left an indelible imprint on his era, and his achievements are historic.

Pope John Paul II - Transformation From 0 To 84 Years Old

Salvationists from around the world join with their Roman Catholic brothers and sisters in thanking and praising God for the life of Pope John Paul II, and pray that they may know the comfort of Christ in their hour of sorrow. The death of Pope John Paul II brings one of the Roman Catholic Church's longest papal reigns to an end and closes the last chapter on one of the most significant lives of our times. By any measure, John Paul II was one of the most influential figures on the world scene, leading over a billion Roman Catholics worldwide and exercising a significant influence on world affairs during some of the most tumultuous decades of the 20th century.

Inevitably, his death raises fundamental questions about how evangelical Christians should understand the papacy itself, as well as those who hold the papal office. Given the low level of theological knowledge and the high emotionalism of the era, many evangelicals appear confused when confronted with an event like the death of a pope. Furthermore, evangelicals are more likely to have been aware of this pope in contrast with those who held the office in the past.

In this age of mass communications and media, John Paul II has been one of the most publicized, televised, and celebrated public figures of our age. For evangelicals, the crucial question comes with the institution of the papacy itself. After all, the Reformation of the 16th century required a rejection of papal power and authority, and the Reformers soon came to understand the papacy as an unbiblical office that inevitably compromised the authority and sufficiency of scripture. Over time, the heirs of the Reformers came to understand that the papacy is a fundamentally unbiblical office that posits an earthly monarch as the earthly head of the church.

Furthermore, this office is then invested with claims to spiritual and temporal power that are combined with claims of apostolic succession and serve as foundational pillars for the comprehensive claims of the Roman Catholic Church. The Protestant rejection of the papacy was no small matter, though some liberal Protestants and careless evangelicals seem to have forgotten why. Beyond this, the papacy is inextricably linked to the structure of Catholic theology and the superstructure of truth claims, practices, and doctrines that constitute Catholicism.

Evangelical Christians simply cannot accept the legitimacy of the papacy and must resist and reject claims of papal authority. To do otherwise would be to compromise biblical truth and reverse the Reformation. With the death of John Paul II, evangelicals are confronted with a sensitive question: Can we recognize genuine virtues in a man who for over a quarter of a century held an office we must expressly reject? We should be unembarrassed and unhesitant to declare our admiration for John Paul II's courageous stand against Communism, his bold defense of human dignity and human life, and his robust and substantial defense of truth in the face of postmodernism.

In many of the great battles of our day, evangelicals found John Paul II to be a key ally. This was especially true with the crucial issues of abortion and euthanasia. With bold strokes and a clear voice, this pope defended human life from the moment of conception until natural death. In his encyclical, Evangelium Vitae , he argued for an implacable opposition to what he called the "culture of death"--an age that would increasingly embrace death rather than life and forfeit human dignity on the altar of human autonomy and individual rights.

In Veritatis Splendor , John Paul argued that the modern concept of freedom as unrestrained human liberty would lead to the destruction of Christian ethics and the undermining of all authority. In this powerful statement, the pope defended the very nature of truth against postmodern denials and a culture increasingly attracted to moral relativism. The legacy of this pope cannot be separated from the facts of his life. Born May 18, in Wadowice, just south of Krakow in Poland, Karol Wojtyla would come to adulthood in the context of Communist oppression.

Throughout his life, he would identify himself as a Pole and a Slav, and the twists and turns of his biography would become a focus of world attention. Trained as an actor, Karol Wojtyla would later decide to enter the priesthood, following a calling that brought great respect in his native Poland. With remarkable speed, Father Wojtyla moved into the hierarchy of the church. He was consecrated a bishop in just 12 years after entering the priesthood. In , he was installed as Archbishop of Krakow, and just three years later he was created a cardinal by Pope Paul VI. Long before he became a cardinal of the church, Karol Wojtyla had attracted the attention of the Vatican.

He had studied in Rome and had developed a reputation in the academic circles of the church. Nevertheless, when the College of Cardinals elected Albino Luciani on August 25, , it looked as if Cardinal Wojtyla had lost his chance to become pope. All this changed on September 28, , when Cardinal Luciani--now Pope John Paul I--died in his sleep during the night, barely a month after his election as pope. The election of Karol Wojtyla as pope came on October 16, , and he immediately announced that he would take the name "John Paul II" as a way of honoring his immediate predecessor.

Nevertheless, it was clear that this new pope would take the papacy and the Roman Catholic Church firmly in hand. In his early years, this Polish pope was known by millions of persons around the globe, primarily as a man who opposed Communist tyranny with personal courage and the weight of his papal office. John Paul II was the first non-Italian pope since , and the historical importance of his election became clear as he used the full influence of his papal office to encourage the Solidarity movement in his native Poland.

Along with President Ronald W. In the case of John Paul II, the assassination attempt that nearly took his life was organized by the Bulgarian secret police, presumably under orders from the KGB in the Soviet Union. Evangelical Christians should honor the courage of this man and his historic role in bringing Communist tyranny to an end--at least within the Soviet Union and in Eastern Europe.


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Added to this, we should honor his defense of human dignity and his eloquent and influential witness against abortion and the Culture of Death. He defended and continued the theological directions set loose at the Second Vatican Council.


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Even as he consolidated authority in the Vatican and disciplined wayward priests and theologians, he never confronted the most pressing issues of evangelical concern. Even in his most recent book, released in the United States just days before his death, John Paul II continued to define the work of Christ as that which is added to human effort.

Like the church he served, John Paul II rejected justification by faith. Beyond this, he rejected the biblical doctrine of hell, embraced inclusivism, and promoted an extreme form of Marian devotion, referring to Mary as "Co-Redemptrix," "Mediatrix," and "Mother of all Graces. In the end, evangelicals should be thankful for the personal virtues Pope John Paul II demonstrated, and for his advocacy on behalf of life, liberty, and human dignity. Yet we cannot ignore the institution of the papacy itself, nor the complex of doctrines, truth claims, and false doctrines that John Paul II taught, defended, and promulgated.

As Roman Catholics mourn the passing of the pope, we should take care to respond with both compassion and conviction, fulfilling our own responsibility to take the measure of this man and his legacy. Albert Mohler, Jr. For more articles and resources by Dr. Mohler, and for information on The Albert Mohler Program, a daily national radio program broadcast on the Salem Radio Network, go to www.

This CP-Commentary is for your own personal, non-commercial use, or for ministerial or educational purposes only. The many years of the ministry of His Holiness as Primate of the Roman Catholic Church were a most important stage in modern history. The judgements of the late Pope on many problems in the life of society and on the affirmation of the eternal Christian values in and the necessity to revive the moral role of Christians in the secularizing world have always found a favourable response in our Church.

The last days of John Paul II were marked by qualities, which have gained him respect of all people. He endured his sufferings with strong faith, thus making millions of people to admire his courage. I sincerely hope that his memory will serve the cause of building up good relations between our Churches and will be the pledge for overcoming the present difficulties. Salvationists throughout Australia today are praying for their Roman Catholic brothers and sisters as they say their final farewell to Pope John Paul II. As well as mourn, we join with them in celebrating this man's immense contribution to world peace and reconciliation, and his high stand on maintaining moral values in an era in which these values were, and continue to be, under attack.

The passing of His Holiness has triggered a period of grief and mourning across the world such as we have not seen for many decades. This was a Pope who endeared himself to the world -- every nation, every race -- by taking his mission out of the Vatican and around the globe, like no other Pope before him. We give thanks for the way in which he reached out to all people without discrimination and with an intrinsic belief in the dignity of every human person, no matter what their position in life.

The Salvation Army is also on a world mission to bring the love and compassion of God to all peoples. We pay our respects on this day, therefore, to a Christian leader who stood amid a world of fading and confused values, as a beacon shining on the mind and the heart of God. Through his own commitment to a life of spirituality and faith, Pope John Paul II captured the imagination of our time in an extraordinary way.

He was a powerful, persuasive yet often disarming advocate for a vision broadly shared by an entire generation of church leaders and thinkers from many Christian traditions. His papacy sounded strong themes of unity among Christians. And in a world torn by war that all too often turns on religious differences, he advanced the cause of interfaith understanding.

He engaged in a passionate quest to end hostilities in all the hotspots of the globe and to advance human rights everywhere. He spoke forthrightly on the scandal of want and need among the global family, calling to task the wealthy and secure, urging them to invest in economic systems that support human dignity and well-being. And always, he spoke to the youth, strongly connecting with them in faith and hope. Our relationship with him was developed during his visits to the United States in and , by three major NCC delegations to the Vatican in , and , and by on-going contacts with other Vatican officials.

In response to the invitation of the Pope in Ut Unum Sint, the NCC Faith and Order Commission had been in a continuing dialogue with him about his desire to carry out his ministry as Bishop of Rome in a way that all could experience as a work of love and a service to unity. Now he is at rest. Yet his legacy is very much alive in the hearts and minds of millions.

May his memory be eternal! We want to recall at this moment, with affection, his intense presence in ecumenical and interreligious dialogue. Many are the "firsts" that have characterized this papacy, and many of these had to do with the Churches of the Reform: a Pope in Geneva, a Pope meeting with Italian Protestants, a Pope who visits the Lutheran Church in Rome.

It was moments like these that characterized all of his long papacy, and we received these first fruits as a gift of the Lord. Reverend Billy Graham. Message of Cardinal Pell, Archbishop of Sydney.