Monday, September 10, 2007

Pope's General Audiences, Part II

In my last post, I began to discuss the thematic catechesis present in the Pope's Wednesday audiences. Here I would like to continue that discussion.

All of John Paul II's General audiences are available on the Vatican website. Unfortunately, they are not all available in English. On the regular page for his General Audiences, they are only available in English beginning with his catechesis on December 18, 1996. Before this date, they are only available in Italian and Spanish (and sometimes Portuguese). Fortunately, there are a few "back door" places on the website to find some of the earlier audiences.

Pope John Paul II delivered his series of catechesis on the Original Unity of Man and Woman (AKA the Theology of the Body) from 1979-1984. The first part of this catechesis is available on the Vatican website.

Following the "Theology of the Body," John Paul II began a lengthy Catechesis on the Creed. I stumbled upon a link to these audiences in English. (Sidenote: I don't know if it's just my web browser or the website itself, but all my em dashes on this portion of the website appear as รข€”). These are also available in book form from Pauline Books and Media, however they have been discontinued and are getting harder to find. Here is a snapshot of those audiences:

I haven't been able to find the titles on Jesus and the Church anywhere for under $100 each, which is unfortunate. Fortunately though, all those audiences are on the web.

Following the Catechesis on the Creed, Pope John Paul II began a catechesis on Mary from September 6, 1995, through November 12, 1997. The first half of this catechesis is not available in English on the web so far as I have found, but the book is still in print and is definitely worth the price.

Next, John Paul II delivered a series of Catechesis on Salvation History, which is also still available, but only in limited quantities as it too has been discontinued. Fortunately, these audiences, which range from November 19, 1997, through March 14, 2001, are all available in English on the Vatican website.

The last series of Catechesis Pope John Paul II began was a commentary on all of the Psalms and Canticles in both Morning Prayer (Lauds) and Evening Prayer (Vespers) from the Liturgy of the Hours. The Catechesis on Morning Prayer began on March 28, 2001, and finished on October 1, 2003 with a reflection on the Benedictus (the Canticle of Zechariah [Luke 1:68-79]). This portion of the Catechesis is available in book form in addition to being on the web.

The Catechesis on Evening Prayer picked up on October 8, 2003, but alas, John Paul the Great passed on before completing it. Pope Benedict XVI wasted no time in picking up where he left off and, using the late pope's notes, completed the catechesis on February 15, 2006, with the reflection on the great Marian prayer, the Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55). If you want this series of catechesis in book form, you'll have to order it from overseas with CTS Publications (they also have available the catechesis on Morning Prayer).

And of course, this brings us to where we were with the last post and Pope Benedict XVI's catechesis on the Apostles.

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