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By Fr. Kyle Schnippel on 12/28/2016 12:43 PM
Over the last nine weeks, it was a joy to walk through Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetitia, his Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation on ‘The Joy of Love.’ Reflecting on the joys and struggles of marriage and family in the world today, I found this document to be both a joy and a challenge to read. The joy was in seeing the Holy Father reflect on his many years as a priest and bishop ministering to the flock entrusted to his care. He truly knew and loved the sheep of his flock and desired to bring each one closer to Jesus.
By Fr. Kyle Schnippel on 12/18/2016 12:00 AM

As we come to the ninth and final chapter of Amoris Laetitia, Pope Francis’ Post Synodal Apostolic Exhortation on Married Love, we find a lovely conclusion to the work entitled: “The Spirituality of Marriage and the Family.” What strikes me in this chapter is how needed this reality is, that there is intended to be a spiritual life at the heart of a Christian family, for only the family that prays as one will be able to face the trials and tribulations that come in the modern world with that grace needed to find life through those little daily crosses that are presented. Our Holy Father states:

“The Lord’s presence dwells in real and concrete families, with all their daily troubles and struggles, joys and hopes. Living in a family makes it hard for us to feign or lie; we cannot hide behind a mask. If that authenticity is in- spired by love, then the Lord reigns there, with his joy and his peace. The spirituality of family love is made up of thousands of small but real gestures. In that variety of gifts and encounters which deepen communion, God has his dwelling place. This mutual concern “brings together the human and the divine”, for it is filled with the love of God. In the end, marital spirituality is a spirituality of the bond, in which divine love dwells. (AL 315)”

By Fr. Kyle Schnippel on 12/11/2016 12:00 AM
If you have heard of any of the controversy over Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia, it is probably centered around chapter 8. This chapter, entitled ‘Accompany, Discerning and Integrating Weakness,’ focuses on the sometime sticky and difficult situations that arise when the Church presents an ideal to the world, yet recognizes the reality that is present in certainly pastoral situations. It does not take a long career in ministry to know that the gulf between those two concepts can often be very far apart! When we look at this chasm, Pope Francis reminds ‘that the Church’s task is often that of a field hospital.’ (AL 291)
By Fr. Kyle Schnippel on 12/4/2016 12:02 AM

As we turn to chapter 7 of Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia, we find a ‘Towards a Better Education of Children.’ Here, our Holy Father recognizes the importance of family life in rearing and formation of children, even to the point of calling this the ‘essential role’ of the family today.

To begin the chapter, Pope Francis first asks the question, ‘Where are our children?’ By doing so, he also acknowledges that ‘families cannot help but be places of support, guidance and direction’ (AL 260) for their children. Therefore, parents should consider how they introduce their children to the various aspects of the modern world. Yet, the proliferation of electronic devices and new modes of communication present ever greater avenues for the wiles of the world to sneak in. The goal is to help form our young people to navigate this new world order in order to be able to still hear the voice of Christ calling them into something more, something greater, as we guide them to an ever greater maturity of faith.

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Re: Why do we place a white pall on the casket of the deceased at funeral Masses?
I have been wondering about that. Thank you for explaining it.

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