Year of Faith comes to a close Nov. 24

November 12, 2013

HOUSTON — “The door of faith is always open for us” is how then-Pope Benedict XVI began his letter announcing a Year of Faith for the Catholic Church. The Year of Faith, a reminder and invitation for a “renewed conversion to the Lord,” will come to a close on Nov. 24, the feast of Christ the King. 

Daniel Cardinal Dinardo, in recounting the year to a gathering of St. John Vianney Catholic Church parishioners on Oct. 29, noted that now Pope Emeritus Benedict was “intent on people rediscovering faith as a journey.”

And that journey is one to be undertaken with a happy heart because it is about knowing and loving Jesus, and because of the sign it gives to others.

“Walking in faith with the Lord Jesus and His Church, you want people to follow. People who see a joyful witness want to join in,” said Cardinal DiNardo.

“Catholics have much to offer,” he added. “But so much of it is hidden. Joy will reveal it and get people interested.”

Does this mean that the journey is easy, or that there are not problems to be addressed? Not at all.

“People have complaints. They are rightfully concerned. But if that’s your ‘mode,’ why would anyone want to join you?” he cautioned.

When we encounter a messy situation, lack of faith, sadness, view it as an opportunity to make a positive difference, Cardinal stated. “Jesus has given us all something to do,” Cardinal DiNardo said. 

In his letter, Pope Benedict said that “we want this Year to arouse in every believer the aspiration to profess the faith in fullness and with renewed conviction, with confidence and hope.”

“God searches people out through His Church,” Cardinal DiNardo said. But it’s not just a social club. “There is much more. What makes us what we are is our communion with the Lord Jesus.”

In this Year of Faith and beyond, Cardinal DiNardo urged the faithful to “see what love the Father has for us. Never be ashamed to say who you are. Be glad and rejoice.”

This witness of believers leads to “the renewal of the Church...,” said Pope Benedict in his Year of Faith letter. “By their very existence in the world, Christians are called to radiate the word of truth that the Lord Jesus has left us.”

Cardinal DiNardo will celebrate the Archdiocesan Mass concluding the Year of Faith on Saturday, Nov. 23, at the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, 1111 St. Joseph Pkwy., at 5 p.m.