20130520 Local churches revived 地方教會的甦醒

The nineteenth century saw the revival of the Catholic Church in France, Germany, Ireland, and England. During that period the Church was blessed by the life of Blessed Frederick Ozanam (1813-1853) in France, and by the lives of Blessed Dominic Barberi (1792-1849) and Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890) in England.

Frederick Ozanam

At the Royal College of Lyons, the young Frederick Ozanam and his fellow students organized conferences of literature, history, and philosophy to support one another in the faith.

During one of the conferences, a young socialist challenged Frederick saying, “The Church is hypocrisy. What are you doing for the poor?” This conversation led to the establishment of the Conference of Charity, which eventually became the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

Frederick said, “If we are too young to intervene in the social struggle, are we then to remain passive in the middle of a world which is suffering and groaning? No, a preparatory path is open to us. Before doing public good, we can try to do good to a few. Before regenerating France, we can give relief to a few of her poor.”

Before his death at forty, Frederick pioneered the newspaper, The New Era, to secure justice for the poor and the working class. He also oversaw the expansion of the Society to other countries.

Today, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is an international organization with over one million members helping thirty million poor people daily.

Dominic Barberi

            An orphan at eight, Dominic was raised up by his uncle and aunt. When Napoleon closed all the religious houses in Italy, Dominic became acquainted with several Passionist living in exile near his town. During this time, he experienced an interior call to preach to the people in England.

Dominic joined the Passionist and was ordained a priest in 1821. He ministered in Italy for nineteen years, but his heart was in England. He learnt English and met with English visitors in Rome.

In 1840, Dominic and his companions established the first Passionist monastery outside of Italy in Belgium. Finally in 1842, he established the first Passionist house in England.

In his short seven years in England, Dominic worked tirelessly as a home-missioner. He established three churches and several chapels, preached numerous missions and received hundreds of converts, including John Henry Newman, into the Catholic Church.

John Henry Newman

            Since the Protestant revolt, the freedom of Catholics in England had been restricted. The Act of Catholic Emancipation signed by the king on April 13, 1829 permitted Catholics in England to worship publicly.

The Oxford Movement (1833-1845) represented growing interest in the Catholic Church in the Protestant University of Oxford. John Henry Newman was the most famous convert to Catholicism in the Oxford Movement. He entered the Catholic Church in 1845 and was ordained a priest in Rome the next year. He came back to England and established the Oratory of St. Philip near Birmingham in 1848.

As a Catholic priest, John Henry Newman wrote Parochial and Plain Sermons, An Essay in Aid of a Grammar of Assent (a treatise on the philosophy of religion), and Apologia Pro Vita Sua ( the classic defense of his religious views).

On May 12, 1879, John Henry Newman was made Cardinal by Pope Leo XIII.

During his trip to England, Pope Benedict XVI beatified John Henry Newman on September 19, 2010.

On November 4, 2009, Benedict XVI issued the apostolic constitution, Anglicanorum Coetibus, enabling Anglicans to enter into full communion with the Catholic Church while preserving elements of their distinctive Anglican spiritual and liturgical heritage.

In accordance with Anglicanorum Coetibus, the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham was established on January 15, 2011 under the patronage of Blessed John Henry Newman.

十九世紀,分別在法國、德國、愛爾蘭和英國等地的天主教會,漸漸地甦醒過來,不少聖賢亦於此時陸讀浮現,當中有法國的真福斐德.鄂撒楠(1813-1853),英國的真福道明.伯博理(1792-1849)和真福亨利.紐曼(1801-1890)。

 

 

斐德.鄂撒楠

 

年青的斐德.鄂撒楠在里昂皇家學院就讀時,為了互相鼓勵彼此保守信德,與同學們組織文學、歷史及哲學的研討聚會。不過,一次聚會上,一名社會主義的同學挑戰斐德說:「你的教會是偽善!你們為貧苦的人又作了些什麼呢?」這激發他決定要建立一個慈善團體。斐德.鄂撒楠說:「假如我們自以為太年青了,不宜過早介入社會上的爭扎,是否要在痛苦與呻吟的世界中處於被動呢?不!道路已為我們開辟了,我們可以從小數做起,然後廣惠大眾。待法國重生之前,我們先為一些苦者解困吧!」這慈善團體,即後來的「聖文生(聖雲先)會」。

 

聖斐德.鄂撒楠四十壯年早歿,死前主編一份名叫「新紀元」的報刊,積極為貧苦和勞工階層爭取公義,且亦見到自己創立的「聖文生會」慈善機構,會廣達異國他方。

 

今天,「聖文生會」約一百萬成員,在國際層面上,每日為三千萬貧苦人服務。

 

 

道明.伯博理

 

道明.伯博理八歲成了孤兒,由叔嬸養育成人。拿破崙飭令關閉意大利所有修院時,道明在家鄉附近小城,陪伴著幾位被放逐的「苦難會」會士;而當時他的內心已感覺到天主的聖召,要他到英國傳道。

 

1821年,道明以「苦難會」會士身份晉鐸,在意大利服務了十九年,但他並未忘記到英國傳道的呼喚,因此期間,他努力學習英文,在羅馬結交來自英國的訪客。

 

1840年,道明和一些「苦難會」會士,在比利時創建修院,是「苦難會」在意大利國境以外第一所修院。兩年後,道明終嘗所願,在英國創建第一座「苦難會」會院。

 

在英國短短七年內,道明無間地作傳教工作,建了三座聖堂和幾所小堂,到不同地方傳教,致使數百人皈化天主教,當中有亨利.紐曼。

 

 

若望.亨利.紐曼

 

基督新教崛起,天主教在英國的活動受到抑制;直至英王在1829年四月十三日簽署解除法令,才容許天主教徒舉行公開的敬禮。

 

充斥基督新教的英國牛頓大學,經歷一項名為「牛頓運動」(1833-1845) ,使很多人對天主教重新產生興趣,其中一位皈化聖教的人,是箸名的若望.亨利.紐曼:他在1845年加入天主教,翌年在羅馬晉鐸,晉鐸後返回英國,1848年在伯明翰郡建起了聖斐利伯的經堂會。

 

作為天主教神父,紐曼箸作了一些書籍,其中內容有道理、宗教哲學,和護教。

 

1879年五月十二日,教宗良十三世擢昇若望.亨利.紐曼為樞機主教。

2010年九月十九日,教宗本篤十六世牧訪英國時,把若望.亨利.紐曼宣為真福品。

 

2009年十一月四日,教宗本篤十六世簽發宗座憲章,容許英國聖公會人員融入天主教的同時,可保有他們在靈修及禮儀上的傳統。而根據該憲章,於2011年一月十五日,在英國特別設立「華盛坎聖母」的團體。該團體以真福若望.亨利.紐曼為主保。

 

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