Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Show more faith, Catholics urged

Catholics are being encouraged to make their faith more visible

Catholics are being encouraged to make their faith more visible by saying "God bless you" and making the Sign of the Cross more often.

The advice, in a letter from the Archbishop of Westminster, comes a week after the Pope's state visit to Britain.

The Most Reverend Vincent Nichols, head of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, said the historic four-day trip by Benedict XVI brought "such joy" and gave "a great boost to so many", providing believers with "new heart" for their mission.

He called on Catholics to respond to the Pope's hope that they will become "ever more conscious of their dignity as a priestly people".

"With the blessings of this visit we can be more confident in our faith and more ready to speak about it and let it be seen each day," the Archbishop wrote. "A small step we can all take is to be quicker to say to others that we will pray for them, especially to those in distress.

"Even the simple step of more regularly using the greeting 'God bless you', gently and naturally, would make a difference to the tone we set in our daily lives as would the more frequent use of the Sign of the Cross.

"Making faith visible is so much a part of the invitation the Holy Father has extended to us all."

Archbishop Nichols thanked the Queen for inviting the Pope to Britain as well as those who worked to prepare for the visit through "difficulties, doubts and criticism".

He said that during the pontiff's four "marvellous and unforgettable" days in Britain, Catholics had "glimpsed the beauty of holiness".

"I will never forget the richness of the silence of 80,000 people at prayer before the Blessed Sacrament in Hyde Park," he wrote.

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