The Norman Transcript

Religion

July 26, 2013

Pope urges against materialism

APARECIDA, Brazil — Pope Francis made an emotional plea Wednesday for Roman Catholics to shun materialism in the first public Mass of his initial international trip as pontiff, then met with drug addicts and denounced the “dealers of death” who fuel their suffering.

On his first full day of activities in Brazil, Francis traveled from one of the most important shrines in Latin America, Our Lady of Aparecida, to what he called a “shrine of human suffering” — a hospital in Rio de Janeiro that treats substance abusers.

Both encounters had a common theme that the humble pope has stressed during his young papacy: a denunciation of the “ephemeral idols” of money and power and a need for the Catholic Church to focus on the poor and outcasts.

Francis started his day traveling to Aparecida, where thousands packed into the huge Basilica of the Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida in an agricultural region of verdant fields between Rio and Sao Paolo. Tens of thousands more braved a cold rain outside to catch a glimpse of the first pope from the Americas returning to a shrine of great meaning to the continent and to Francis himself.

Before the Mass, Francis stood in silent prayer in front of the 15-inch statue of the Virgin of Aparecida, the “Black Mary,” his eyes tearing up as he breathed heavily. He later carried a replica of it in his arms, visibly moved at the gift he had been given. Francis has entrusted his papacy to the Virgin Mary and, like many Catholics in Latin America, places great importance in devotion to Mary.

After his Mass, the pope blessed the tens of thousands gathered outside the basilica and announced that he would return to Aparecida in 2017, the year that marks the 300th anniversary of a fisherman finding the Black Mary statue in a nearby river.

Back in Rio, Francis arrived in a closed car at the St. Francis of Assisi hospital — named for Francis’ namesake, the 13th century friar who renounced a wealthy, dissolute lifestyle to embrace a life of simplicity. The pope bounded out of the car into a cold rain and greeted a group of people in wheelchairs and well-wishers.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Religion
  • Hnsen Luger Kate Hansen still riding the Olympic cloud

    Not many people can say they actually accomplished their lifetime dreams. Even less can say they did it before turning 22....

    March 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lexington High graduate to serve two-years for LDS

    Lexington High School graduate Thayne Winterton left April 9 to serve a two-year mission in the California Fresno Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints....

    April 24, 2014

  • Church will host assembly

    First Christian Church Norman will be host to about 300 Oklahoma Christian (Disciples of Christ) member gathering for the biennial assembly May 2 to 3. In the theme of “Growing in Grace,” the assembly will include worship, study, music and ...

    April 24, 2014

  • Lebanese Festival planned for two days

    Food, music, dance, culture and traditional home-cooked Lebanese food once again comes together in Norman in the form of Middle Eastern hospitality. The third annual Lebanese Heritage and Food Festival is set for Saturday and Sunday at ...

    April 24, 2014

  • How does one banish bad thoughts?

    Be mindful of your thoughts Lama Chuck Stanford, Rime Buddhist Center: We aren’t able to control the thoughts that arise in our mind any more than we are able to stop breathing. Both are inherent to our humanness....

    April 24, 2014

  • Conference set

    Following a diocesan-sponsored national conference on violence, “Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace,” the Episcopal Church Women of St. John’s Norman will host an Oklahoma diocesan-wide women’s conference and Bishop’s day on April 25-26....

    April 18, 2014

  • Muslim group urges re-education

    LOS ANGELES — Seeking a way to prevent violence like last year’s deadly Boston Marathon bombing, an Islamic advocacy group Monday announced a plan aimed at helping U.S. mosques identify and re-educate radicals....

    April 18, 2014

  • This is ... Friday ...

    It’s Good Friday. Good Friday? What could possibly be “good” about Good Friday? Think about it … this is the day in which the Lord Jesus was beaten and crucified. He hung on a cross between two thieves. Abandoned, betrayed and denied, by ...

    April 17, 2014

  • Why do we always test God?

    ‘Do not put the Lord God to the test,’ Jesus said, but don’t we do this all the time? Human nature The Rev. Holly McKissick, Peace Christian Church UCC: It’s human nature: testing the limits of God’s peaceful creation....

    April 17, 2014

  • Girl told not to say prayer

    OVIEDO, Fla. — The 5-year-old who said she was told not to pray over her lunch visited the school Monday and identified the staffer in a line-up, her family’s lawyer said....

    April 11, 2014

Video
Facebook