We have $162,320 to go in our Fall Campaign. Every penny is used to strengthen the Church. See details!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

With solemn Vespers, Te Deum, Pope closes calendar year

Catholic World News - December 31, 2012

Pope Benedict XVI presided at the final liturgical ceremony of 2012, the Solemn Vespers for the Feast of Mary the Mother of God, at St. Peter’s basilica on December 31.

The Vespers service—actually the first observance of the Liturgy of the Hours for January 1—is “a synthesis of all the hours of the year that is about to come to an end,” the Pope observed about the evening ceremony. The solemn liturgy included the traditional signing of the Te Deum in thanksgiving for the blessings of the past year, and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.

In his brief homily the Holy Father said that the news of the secular world can be discouraging. But he said, “we cannot rely solely on the news if we want to understand the world and life. We must be able to remain in silence, in meditation, in calm and prolonged reflection.”

Reminding the congregation that the Church is celebrating a Year of Faith, the Pope said that the observance is designed to increase knowledge of the Catholic faith, as a way of stimulating evangelical efforts. He explained:

In order to proclaim the Gospel and to allow those who still do not know Jesus, or have abandoned Him, to cross again the threshold of faith and live in communion with God, it is essential to know in depth the meaning of the truths contained in the Profession of Faith.

At the conclusion of the Vespers service, the Pope went out into St. Peter’s Square to visit the crèche set up there. He joined with members of the Swiss Guard in singing traditional Christmas hymns, and greeted some of the pilgrims who were in Rome for Christmas.

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($162,320 to go):
$200,000.00 $37,679.72
81% 19%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Fall Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

A secret plot to control the Synod? No; it's not secret at all. 7 hours ago
What about Catholic affirmation for those in false marriages? 9 hours ago
Free eBook: Pope Francis' Catechesis on the Family October 7
The headlines say Gov. Brown is Catholic. He says he's not sure what that means. October 7
Archbishop predicts Synod won't change Church teaching. Why am I not reassured? October 7

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
In Cuba, Pope emphasizes service to the vulnerable, praises thaw in US-Cuban relations CWN - September 21
Pope challenges America in speech to US Congress CWN - September 24
As Synod opens, Pope calls on Church to defend ‘unity and indissolubility’ of marriage bond CWN - October 5