Page 11, 25th July 2008

25th July 2008
Page 11
Page 11, 25th July 2008 — The forgotten vision of Pope John XXIII

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Organisations: second Vatican Council


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The forgotten vision of Pope John XXIII

From Mr Ray Knight, SIR The front-page headline "Church can help end knife crime Crisis, says IDS" (July 18), headed an article which deserves deeper consideration by our leaders and by us laity.

The report comprehensively describes the help that the Church offers and the Government must heed in order to help to end knife crime. However. we need to address the problem of why the Government and most of society see no reason to heed the Church's teaching. Pope John XXIII discerned this problem; he thought it so serious that he launched the second Vatican Council to resolve it. The Council Fathers were to decide how to return the Church to its roots and make it more able to attract today's society. In the event the Council recommended some updating but with no suggestion on returning to our roots as described in Acts.

So what was it about the Church in Acts that attracted converts of all nations and beliefs? Jesus himself gives the clue when he told people to believe at least because of the miracles they saw. From the start we see the Church in Acts spreading the Gospel with the support of miracles (Acts 2:43).

The Holy Spirit was integrated into the Church to guide and empower it. Again Pope John XXIII discerned this need in today's Church as he publicly prayed for the Holy Spirit to come upon the Church "as by a new Pentecost". Governments and society would certainly take notice of that sort of Church.

Without any further clear lead, we laity must work in our prayer groups to implement Pope John XX11I's vision in our parishes. Pope Paul VI has given us some valuable guidelines in his 1975 Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi.

Yours faithfully, RAY KNIGHT Baldock, Herts

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