MURCIA, Spain, FEB. 28, 2007 (Zenit.org).- Archbishop Paul Cordes says the primary objective of Catholic charities is to show the love of God.

The president of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, which helps the Pope to promote and coordinate the Church's charitable work, said this on Tuesday when opening an international conference at the Catholic University of St. Anthony in Murcia.

"Catholic charitable associations must work to reduce poverty, but their primary objective is to show the love of God in the world," Archbishop Cordes said.

The 72-year-old prelate exhorted ecclesial groups "to firmly maintain their roots and objectives so as not to lose their ecclesial nature, giving priority to evangelization in the charitable activities in which they engage."

His conference was entitled "Socio-Charitable Activity in the Encyclical 'Deus Caritas Est.'"

The prelate said that "Christian associations as well as believers must not seek supports in the field of socio-charitable action that are not in accord with the Gospel."

"Church and state need each other in the quest for man's good; hence, the need for cooperation between both institutions is inevitable," Archbishop Cordes added.

The prelate praised the work of civil associations, particularly those nongovernmental organizations that "engage in charitable activity philanthropically."
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Teachings of Christ

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." (John 10:10 ESV)

Exaltation of the Cross

Save Your people, O Lord, and bless Your inheritance; * grant victory to Your Church over her enemies * and protect Your commonwealth by Your Cross. (Troparion - Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Willingly lifted up on the Cross, O Christ God, * bestow Your compassions upon the new commonwealth that bears Your name. * By your power grant joy to Your Church, * granting her victory over her enemies. * May she have your Cross as the weapon of peace * and the invincible ensign of victory. (Kontakion - Tone 4)

The Church celebrates the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross on September 14th.

Random Proverb

Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine. (Proverbs 3:9,10 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

While the Bridegroom tarried, they slumbered and slept: Give ear, ye prudent, to our Lord's parable, for it is all light. All of them slept, both the foolish and the wise -- Which signifies that the good and the wicked die until the resurrection. The same sleep comes upon the ten of them, which is as much as to say, That death is the same for all creation without distinction. One was the sleep of the wise and of the foolish, For one is death, both of the righteous and of sinners. The good die, as the wise virgins slept; And the bad die, as the foolish also slept. Behold, all creation looketh for the coming of the Bridegroom, Christ, Who cometh at the end with His angels. But since He hath tarried, all generations slumber and sleep with the sleep of death, while looking for when He cometh.

A Homily on the Ten Virgins by Mar Jacob, Bishop of Serugh