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placeholder December 12, 2016   •   VOL. 54, NO. 21   •   Oakland, CA

Dec. 12: Meetings, Cristo Rey School project

Dec. 13: Christmas celebration with diocesan attorneys

Dec. 14: 7:45 a.m., Mass, Feast of St. John of the Cross, Carmelite Monastery of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, Kensington

      Chancery employees Christmas Mass and lunch, Cathedral of Christ the Light, Oakland

Dec. 16: Priests Christmas celebration, Bishop's Residence, Oakland

Dec. 17: 9 a.m. Christmas Mass, Santa Rita Jail, Dublin

Dec. 18: 11 a.m. Mass, Jubilee celebration, 800th anniversary of the Dominican Order, St. Mary Magdalen, Berkeley

      5:30 p.m., Advent lessons and carols, Cathedral of Christ the Light, Oakland

Dec. 19: 11:30 a.m., Christmas celebration for the seminarians of the diocese

      5:30 p.m., pre-Christmas Mass and dinner with Jesuit community, San Francisco

Dec. 24: 10 p.m., Christmas Mass, Cathedral of Christ the Light, Oakland

Dec. 25: 10 a.m., Christmas Mass, Cathedral of Christ the Light, Oakland

Dec. 28: National meeting of Vietnamese priests, seminarians, religious, Tampa, Florida

Jan. 7-9: On duty, U.S. Navy

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Bishop leads prayer for fire victims
Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, of Oakland led a prayer for the victims of the Oakland warehouse fire at the opening of a priests' study day Dec. 6. Priests of the diocese considered Pope Francis' apostolic exhortation, "Amoris Laetitia" ("The Joy of Love") at the meeting led by Bishop Mark O'Connell of Boston.

Memorial Mass for the deacon community
Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, celebrated a memorial Mass for the deacon community at St. Stephen Parish in Walnut Creek the morning of Nov. 26, and prayed especially for the deceased deacons and their families. Afterwards, the community enjoyed brunch.

Solidarity with immigrants

With the feasts of the Immaculate Conception and Our Lady of Guadalupe in December, Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, asks the people of the diocese to participate in the National Day of Prayer and Solidarity with Families of Immigrants on Dec. 12. He asked priests and parishes to insert a special petition in the Prayers of the Faithful during Sunday Masses Dec. 10-11 and on the Feast of Our lady of Guadalupe, Dec. 12. More information is at oakdiocese.org.

Advent Lessons, Carols

Join in this Oakland diocese tradition at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 18 at the Cathedral of Christ the Light, 2121 Harrison St., Oakland. Advent Lessons & Carols, which originated in the Church of England, celebrates the birth of Jesus. This tradition tells the tale of the fall of humanity, the promise of the Messiah and the birth of Jesus, paired with the singing of carols, hymns, and choir music. The original liturgy has since been adapted and used by many churches all over the world. Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, will preside. Music by the Cathedral Choir and Cathedral Brass with Rudy de Vos, music director, and William Vaughn, organist. More information at ctlcathedral.org.

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A plea to help people realize their potential

Pope Francis talks with Nancy Gibbs, editorial director of Time Inc. News Group, and Alan Murray, editor-in-chief of Fortune, during an audience with business leaders at the Vatican Dec. 3. The business leaders were taking part in the Fortune-Time Global Forum in Rome, where Pope Francis pleaded with the group of billionaires to take seriously their personal obligation to share their resources and make a real commitment to doing business in a way that helps other people realize their potential, too.

The global economic system, he said Dec. 3, needs a "fundamental renewal" that "does not have to do simply with market economics, figures to be balanced, the development of raw materials and improvements made to infrastructure."

Website on abuse

The Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors has launched a beta version of its website in English and has included its template for local guidelines on preventing sexual abuse, resources for a day of prayer for the victims and survivors as well as a mailing address to contact commission members. The website —www.protectionofminors.va— eventually will include versions in Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and French, the commission said in a statement Dec. 6.

Recognize your sin

At Christmas, God reveals his full power, which is the power of relentlessly seeking his lost sheep and, when he finds them, giving them a caress, Pope Francis said. "One who does not know the caresses of the Lord does not know Christian doctrine. One who does not let himself be caressed by the Lord is lost," the pope said Dec. 6 during his early morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae where he lives. Christmas, he said, is a celebration of the fact that "the Lord comes with his power — which are his caresses — to find us, to save us like lost sheep and bring us back to the flock of his church."

Martyr recognized

Pope Francis has recognized the martyrdom of Father Stanley Rother of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, making him the first martyr born in the United States. Father Rother, born March 27, 1935, on his family's farm near Okarche, Oklahoma, was brutally murdered July 28, 1981, in a Guatemalan village where he ministered to the poor.

Catholic News Service

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