'NI ystici Corporis'
Last Saturday the second Encyclical of Pope Pius XII was published.
The Encyclical, to be called " Mystici Corporis" (of the Mystical Body) from its opening words, is dated the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul, and is described by the Vatican Radio as "a substantial theological dissertation on the Church," occupying some 60 pages of the Church's official paper, the Acta Apostolicae Sedis.
Earliest summaries of the more striking features, given by the Italian News Agency, underline the Holy Father's listing of present-day errors which " at times come close to heresy." They include, according to these accounts: (1) A false mysticism, inclining us to deify ourselves in Him.
(2) Spiritual laziness, implying that Christians need make no effort to achieve salvation.
(3) Disregard for the Sacrament of Confession, except when the soul is burdened with mortal sin. (4) Under-valuation of tbe virtue of private prayer to God.
(5) A tendency to see in Christ only a mediator, forgetting that He is also the Son of God and God himself.
The Vatican Radio transmissions are now being devoted to the reading of the long document. day by day. It has summarised it as follows:
In its first part the Encyclical explains and comments on the words of St. Paul, the first to call
the Church " the Body of Christ," said the speaker.
The Church is Christ's Body, because Christ was its founder when He endowed the Apostles with supernatural powers, they having been called and prepared for the high office of propagating the Church throughout the world, when by His death He ended the old era and brought in the new law consecrated with the blood of the Redeemer, when by thc Mystery of Pentecost He inaugurated His Church and invested it with its universal character.
Besides its founder. Jesus is the Head of the Church, especielly in His supreme dignity, for in addition to the direct and invisible rule lie exercises over the intelligence and goodness of men, He also exercises a visible rule over the entire Church through the medium of the Roman Pontiff, His Vicar on Earth and over its defences by the Bishops. His grace permeates the unity and holiness of the Church.
Christ is furthermore the sustainer of His mystic and holy Body because He sustains the Church juridically by means of the threefold action of vivifying, sanctifying, and guiding.
Finally, Christ is the Saviour and Sanctifier of the mystic body, because He is in communion with the Church and continues the work begun on the Cross, so that the Church not only embodies a society of believers but also a Faith.
In the second part of the Encyclical the Supreme Pontiff speaks of our union with Christ in and through the Church. The first means of realising this resides in moral unity.. It is a supernatural union of the faithful. This union becomes apparent with the establishing of the Church of Christ.
The Encyclical dwells on the great value of private prayer. The last part of the Encyclical stresses that the Church should be loved not only mystically but effectively, demonstrating such love in pious works and sacrifices, by pardoning and praying for sinners. The Holy Father makes a warm appeal for the union of all the true Church of Christ
=On OVER TO PAGE FIVE
■ 111101. FROM PAGE ONE without race discrimination, without national bigotry, with that lively feeling of responsibility which should be felt by all towards the acts of Christ, Saviour and Redeemer. The Pontiff urges the members of the Church to show their love particularly towards the weork, the children, the sick. and the destitute. In face of the hostility and calumnies directed against the Church. Christ remains a pillar of comfort for all Christians. for all builders of tomorrow, for all men of good faith who are called up to reconstruct all that has been demolished by the spirit of extermination.
At the annual sports of the Salesian College. Farnborough, on Tuesday, the Victor Ludorum Cup. presented by Brigadier Nash, of the Canadian Army. in memory of past pupils who died in the Battle of Britain, was won jointly by G. O'Brien and M. Schurig, who tied for first place. The prize money this year was given to the Apostleship of the Sea,