Page 1, 29th March 1940

29th March 1940
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Page 1, 29th March 1940 — POPE'S EASTER WARNING
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Locations: Cathedral, Boston, New York

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POPE'S EASTER WARNING

The Pope in his Easter Homily prayed that " the sacred voice of warning on Easter Day " should be heard by the " peoples tormented by raging war and fearing the crises on the horizon,"

Calling for reform and spiritual regeneration, the Holy Father said " This is particularly true in this so critical moment, while sad things appear in the eyes of all and still more frightful things are feared in the future.

" You know well in what period we are living. Harmony between the peoples is miserably crushed, solemnly stipulated treaties are sometimes unilaterally and, without any definite previous agreement, changed or violated, and no longer is the voice of brotherly love and brotherly friendship heard.

" He Who was able to command the winds and the tempests, and calm thc agitated waters, can alone equally bend the will of men to harmony and brotherly love so that—after having happily and freely arranged relations between people according to the laws of truth, justice and charity, and not by force—the sword may be lowered and hands, having finally laid down arms, may be joined in a .sign of understanding and friendship."

Material Progress the Supreme Idol

In a sermon in Westminster Cathedral, Cardinal Hinsley demanded that " we face realities even on this day of the glorious Resurrection.

" Do we not see that the supreme idol has been and is material progress? That is the god adored by those individuals here or in any country who seek profit and gain as the only or main purpose in life." The Cardinal described as " a pitiable form of slavery " the result of the ambitions of " the two great Powers now linked in deadly power against us."

"No longer is there any thought of the unity or brotherhood of man, but nation is divided against nation in barbarous hatred and class against class.

Pope's Sermon

In his homily during Easter Mass in St. Peter's on Sunday morning, the Pope said " Even though at present almost all peoples are either tormented by raging war or fearing the crisis which appears on the horizon, and suffer anxious trepidation, the Easter solemnities recall human souls to celestial joys and strengthen the application of Christian virtues of hope and charity, the need for which is felt so urgently.

" Oh, if Heaven would only grant," the Pope prayed, " that just as divine joy fills Our and your souls nourished by this virtue, in the same way in all parts of the world that men hear the sacred voice of warning on this day, and feel the holy joy which alone can soothe pain, dry tears and calm anxiety in this life.

" And We pray that Ile Who triumphs over death may illuminate all of them with divine light and with His grace, which wins all hearts., renews and retempers them that they also may taste the joys of Easter. "May the resurrection of Jesus Christ, Whom to-day We happily call upon again, be the beginning of a spiritual revival for every man, just as according to incontrovertible history, a new era began from His resurrection."

The Pope then recounted the transformation made by the strengthened Apostles : " Villages and towns and even more populated cities, awakened by a new ray of light and shaken by a new breath of love, understood that it was necessary to regenerate themselves.

Restoration and Regeneration

"But if, as We have said and as the history of the Church teaches, the triumph of Jesus Christ over death brought admirable restoration and regeneration to the entire world, in the present moment we all want to follow the example of the Divine Redeemer and must with care and with work reproduce in ourselves this restoration. " There is another reason," the Pope concluded, " for you and all men ardently to recommend the spiritual regeneration in the Christ. " In fact, this work of reform is not only necessary for private good and individual life, but also for saving humanity.

" This is particularly true in this so critical moment, while sad thirigs appear to the eyes of all and still more frightful things are feared in the future.

" you know well in what period we are living. Harmony between the peoples is miserably crushed, solemnly stipulated treaties are sometimes unilaterally, and without any definite previous agreement, changed or violated, and no longer is the voice of brotherly love and brotherly friendship heard."

Cardinal's Sermon

Preaching in Westminster Cathedral on Easter Sunday, Cardinal Hinsley drew a vivid picture of the state of the pagan world before the coming of Christ.

" The weak and helpless and women and children," he said, " were despised and cruelly down-trodden.

Hatred for enemies was extreme. The working class were slaves treated with brutality and not seldom put to death in numbers for the fault of one The rest of the citizens were proletarians, objects of disdain to the patrician and the privileged few. Immorality was rampant. The State was almighty."

He drew this picture to show that without the grace of God and the fruits of the Resurrection man is utterly helpless to save himself.

With the coming of Christ " the slaves and masters of slaves," the Cardinal said, " were taught their • essential equality before God. Woman was exalted to the rightful dignity which belongs to her: Christ's own Mother became the model and ideal of all that Is purest and noblest in life. Marriage was restored to its natural unity and stability, and was raised to the supernatural order as a great sacrament in Christ and in His Church. The family and home became the living source of all human association in loving harmony."

Christianity Charged as a Failure

" Easy-going Christians," the Cardinal continued, " give some colour to the charge of neo-pagans that Christianity be a failure. But though Christians may fail, Christianity never does,"

To-day war was the consequence of the relapse into paganism. " Men must have something to worship. Do we not see that the supreme idol has been and is material progress? That Is the god adored by those individuals here or in any country who seek their profit and gain as the only or main purpose in life. Advancement in earthly goods, supremacy in material production is the conscious deliberate gospel of two great Powers now linked in deadly war against us: they aim at expansion and domination over all the world.

" They have striven to banish the Gospel of Christ and to substitute a base imitation of religion—the idolatry of race or of Class. The result is a pitiable form of slavery. The person of the human being is counted as a pawn of the State or of a party or of a despot. No longer is there any thought of the unity or brotherhood of man, but nation is divided against nation in barbarous hatred and class against class. Bloodshed and war—liquidation and annihilation of enemies within and of enemies Without are the ruthless means to their evil ambition. Nothing is right or wrong save that which is according to the purpose of the ruling party."

Cardinal to Preside

Cardinal Hinsley is to preside at the annual general meeting of the Catholic Truth Society which is to be held on Thursday next, April 4, at the Cathedral Hall, Westminster, at 5.30.

ARCHDUKE OTTO, studying democracy in the U.S.A., meets Cardinal Dougherty at the investiture of Mgr. Spellman with the Pallium in St. Patrick's Cathedral, New York.

Nearly half the hierarchy of the U.S.A. as well as New York officials were among the 5,500 people present.

Archbishop Spellman, who is a friend of Pope Pius XII, was wearing the gold-woven white vestments that the Pope wore when he was consecrated an archbishop.

Pope Pius XII, then Eugenio Cardinal Pacelli, gave the vestments to Archbishop Spellman for his consecration as auxiliary bishop of Boston in 1532. At that time Archbishop Spellman was just completing two. years as Cardinal Pacelli's assistant in the Papal Secretariat of State.




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