Published November 7, 2013
ATLANTA—The Holy See will conclude the Year of Faith on Nov. 24, the solemnity of Christ the King.
In Atlanta, the year-long observance will close with a specially designated celebration of the Eucharist at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Atlanta. Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory will preside at the 10:30 a.m. Mass with the auxiliary bishops of Atlanta, Bishop Luis R. Zarama and Bishop David P. Talley, as concelebrants. The public is invited.
This Year of Faith declared by Pope Benedict XVI in October 2012 was to serve as a “summons to an authentic and renewed conversion to the Lord, the One Savior of the world.”
In his apostolic letter, “Porta Fidei,” the pope encouraged Catholics to take the opportunity of the Year of Faith to turn back to Jesus and enter into a deeper relationship with him.
The pope described this conversion as opening the “door of faith” cited in Acts 14:27. The “door of faith” is opened at one’s baptism, but during this year Catholics were called to open it again, walk through it and rediscover and renew their relationship with Christ and his Church.
Archbishop Gregory declared the Year of Faith a Marian Year in the Archdiocese of Atlanta. The declaration recognizes that Mary, Mother of God, is the perfect companion and model on the journey of faith.
This Year of Faith celebration of the Eucharist is also an opportunity for the faithful to partake, through the sacraments and prayer, in one of the special graces of the year. A plenary indulgence for the temporal punishment of sins, imparted by the mercy of God and applicable also to the souls of deceased faithful, may be obtained by all faithful who, truly penitent, take sacramental confession and the Eucharist and make a Profession of Faith and pray in accordance with the intentions of the pope.
The solemnity of Christ the King is the final Sunday of the liturgical year as well as the closing of the Year of Faith.
The procession into the Mass will feature a Year of Faith banner.
Kevin Culver, Christ the King choir master, said the responsorial psalm, Psalm 122, is a special arrangement by composer Brian Luckner, director of music at the Cathedral of St. Joseph the Workman in La Crosse, Wis.
The choir’s offertory piece, said Culver, will be of the same text and is Hubert Parry’s “I Was Glad.”
The Year of Faith began Oct. 11, 2012, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council and the 30th anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. The pope called on Catholics to study these texts in order to learn the faith with greater depth and wisdom.
At certain times in the history of the Church, popes have called upon the faithful to dedicate themselves to deepening their understanding of a particular aspect of the faith.
In 1967, Pope Paul VI announced a Year of Faith commemorating the 19th centenary of the martyrdom of Sts. Peter and Paul. The 1967 Year of Faith called upon the Church to recall the supreme act of witness by these two saints so that their martyrdom might inspire the present day Church to collectively and individually make a sincere profession of faith.
At the conclusion of this Year of Faith, Pope Francis will meet with those who, as adults, have decided to become Catholics. According to the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization, “This gathering will serve as a sign: That as the Year of Faith has come to an end, what continues is the commitment of every Christian to respond daily to the Lord Jesus, who calls us to be his disciples, sent into the world to announce the Gospel and to bear witness to the joy of a life lived in faith.”
The Cathedral of Christ the King is located at 2699 Peachtree Road, NE, Atlanta. For directions, visit www.cathedralofchristtheking.org. For information on the Year of Faith in Atlanta, visit yofarchatl.com.