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Archbishop Dolan: 'The Father of Our Family, Il Papa, Needs our Love, Support, and Prayers.'

By Deacon Keith Fournier
March 30th, 2010
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Archbishop Dolan compared the current situation facing Pope Benedict XVI to the" "unjust accusations, shouts of the mob, and scourging at the pillar" which we commemorate this Holy Week.

NEW YORK, NY (Catholic Online) – Archbishop Timothy Dolan loves the Lord and the Church with an infectious enthusiasm borne of a sincere, living faith. Upon his arrival in New York, he quickly won the heart of the Big Apple with his pastoral gifts, warm and loving manner, great preaching and that contagious smile. He is clearly one of the great Leaders of the Catholic Church in the United States of America.

He quickly became a significant personality on the Catholic Channel of the Sirius Radio Network. He is a man comfortable in his own skin, at ease with the use of the media, filled with the Holy Spirit, and eager to share the Gospel, as found in its fullness within the Catholic Church. He is also a true defender of that Faith. In an age of infidelity, he is an advocate of fidelity to the Vicar of Christ, the Successor of Peter, Pope Benedict XVI. He calls all of us to stand in solidarity with the Pope in this challenging hour. We must respond.

In the midst of what has devolved into an almost "open season" of attack on the Pope in much of the Media, Archbishop Dolan made some inspired remarks at this past Sunday´s Passion/Palm Sunday Liturgy. He urged the faithful to defend Pope Benedict´s courageous leadership of the Church during this difficult time of purification. He invited the faithful to pray for Pope Benedict XVI.

In a moving analogy he compared the current situation facing Pope Benedict XVI to the" unjust accusations, shouts of the mob, and scourging at the pillar" which jesus endured and which we will commemorate this Holy Week as we enter into the Triduum. We offer Archbishop Dolan´s remarks at the conclusion of the Palm/Passion Sunday Mass for our global readership. During this Holy Week we ask for concentrated prayer for the whole Church, and, in particular, for our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI:

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Remarks of Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York at Saint Patrick´s Cathedral in New York on Sunday, March 28, 2010.

"The father of our family, il papa, needs our love, support, and prayers."

"May I ask your patience a couple of minutes longer in what has already been a lengthy — yet hopefully uplifting —Sunday Mass?

"The somberness of Holy Week is intensified for Catholics this year.

"The recent tidal wave of headlines about abuse of minors by some few priests, this time in Ireland, Germany, and a re-run of an old story from Wisconsin, has knocked us to our knees once again.

"Anytime this horror, vicious sin, and nauseating crime is reported, as it needs to be, victims and their families are wounded again, the vast majority of faithful priests bow their heads in shame anew, and sincere Catholics experience another dose of shock, sorrow, and even anger.

"What deepens the sadness now is the unrelenting insinuations against the Holy Father himself, as certain sources seem frenzied to implicate the man who, perhaps more than anyone else has been the leader in purification, reform, and renewal that the Church so needs.

"Sunday Mass is hardly the place to document the inaccuracy, bias, and hyperbole of such aspersions.

"But, Sunday Mass is indeed the time for Catholics to pray for " . . . Benedict our Pope."

"And Palm Sunday Mass is sure a fitting place for us to express our love and solidarity for our earthly shepherd now suffering some of the same unjust accusations, shouts of the mob, and scourging at the pillar, as did Jesus.

"No one has been more vigorous in cleansing the Church of the effects of this sickening sin than the man we now call Pope Benedict XVI. The dramatic progress that the Catholic Church in the United States has made — — documented again just last week by the report made by independent forensic auditors — — could never have happened without the insistence and support of the very man now being daily crowned with thorns by groundless innuendo.

"Does the Church and her Pastor, Pope Benedict XVI, need intense scrutiny and just criticism for tragic horrors long past?

"Yes! He himself has asked for it, encouraging complete honesty, at the same time expressing contrition, and urging a thorough cleansing.

"All we ask is that it be fair, and that the Catholic Church not be singled-out for a horror that has cursed every culture, religion, organization, institution, school, agency, and family in the world.

"Sorry to bring this up … but, then again, the Eucharist is the Sunday meal of the spiritual family we call the Church. At Sunday dinner we share both joys and sorrows. The father of our family, il papa, needs our love, support, and prayers." 

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