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» 01/08/2012
VATICAN
Pope: renewing the joy of being children: as men and as Christians
Shortly after having baptized 16 babies, Benedict XVI explains what it means to be children ("Coming into the world is never a choice"), to being parents when life is accepted as a gift. Christians accept life as being a gift of the Father, revealed by Jesus Christ. Baptism is a new birth in the Spirit "in the womb of the Church."

Vatican City (AsiaNews) - In his reflection before praying the Angelus, Benedict XVI wanted to present "a short reflection on our being children of God," to renew "the joy of being children as men and as Christians" .

In the morning, the pontiff had baptised to 16 babies during a Mass celebrated in the Sistine Chapel. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, it is baptism that makes us "children of God."

"First of all - the pope said – let us start with our being children: this is the fundamental condition that binds us together. Not all of us are parents, but surely we are all children. We never choose to come into this world; we are not asked first if we want to be born. But during life, we can develop a free attitude towards life itself: we welcome it as a gift and, in a sense, 'become' what we already are: we become children. This step marks a maturity in our souls and our relationship with our parents, which is filled with gratitude. It is a passage that also makes us capable of being parents ourselves - not biologically, but morally. "

"Even in God - he added - we are all children. God is the origin of the existence of every creature, and the Father in a unique way of every human being: he has a unique, personal relationship with him or her. Each of us is willed, is loved by God even in this relationship with God we can, so to speak, 'be born again', that is what we become. This happens through faith, through our deep and personal ‘yes’ to God as the source and foundation of our existence. With this 'yes' we accept life as a gift of the Father in Heaven, a Father we cannot see but whom we believe in and feel deep within our hearts to be our Father and the Father of all humanity, an immensely good and faithful Father. What is the basis of this faith in God the Father? It is based in Jesus Christ: His person and history has shown us the Father, it has made Him known to us, as far as possible, in this world. Believing that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, allows us to be 'born again', that is in the God who is love (cf. Jn 3.3). St. John says as much about Jesus: 'To all who received Him / He gave the power to become children of God' (Jn 1.12). This is the meaning of the sacrament of Baptism; it is a new birth, which occurs through the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Church. "

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See also
01/11/2009 VATICAN
Pope administers baptism to 13 children
01/07/2007 VATICAN
Pope: Jesus’ Baptism and our call to holiness
01/08/2006 VATICAN
Pope urges rediscovery of joy in being "new men" created by baptism
01/13/2008 VATICAN
Pope: "Overwhelmed with joy" because Christ gives us true and full life
01/09/2011 VATICAN
Pope: Baptism and faith, the most precious gift of life

Editor's choices
IRAQ-ITALY
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul," the thanks of the Patriarch Louis Sako; the concerns of the Bishop of Kurdistan
by Bernardo CervelleraThe head of the Chaldean Church is grateful for the AsiaNews campaign and hopes that "this chain of solidarity will reach far and wide”. Helping refugees to remain in Iraq. But many want to flee abroad. The bishop of Amadiyah where thousands of displaced people have found haven in churches and homes: We also help the Arabs (Muslims), and Yazidis, for free and without looking at our confessional differences.
ITALY - IRAQ
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul" to respond directly to Iraq's emergencyAsiaNews is launching a fundraiser to support Christians targeted by the Islamic State, thus responding to a request by the Patriarch of Baghdad and Pope Francis's urgent appeal "to guarantee all necessary assistance - especially the most urgently needed aid - to the great multitude of people who have been driven from their homes, whose fate depends entirely on the solidarity of others." More than 100,000 people have been forced to flee their homes leaving everything behind and now have nothing to live on. To help them, five euros a day are enough. The funds raised will be sent to the Patriarchate of Baghdad, which will distribute them according to the needs of each family.
CHINA - VATICAN
Wenzhou bishop and priests slam government's campaign against crosses and churches in Zhejiang
by Eugenia ZhangFor Mgr Vincent Zhu Weifang, from the official Church, the campaign of destruction is increasing social instability. It is real persecution against the Christian faith. The bishop apologises for failing to intervene sooner. He was hoping that the campaign would end quickly. Catholics and Protestants suffer injuries as they attempt to defend their sacred buildings. For priests in Wenzhou, the campaign is unfair and touches buildings that have all the right papers. Such "stupid acts" by the government are undermining social harmony.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
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