"The effects of the council have been very far reaching. To mark the 50th anniversary of the council, our Holy Father, Benedict XVI, has called for this Year of Faith and a synod on the new evangelization," Cardinal O'Malley said.
"The new evangelization means announcing the Gospel again with a renewed enthusiasm -- announcing it to people in countries that have been Christian, but perhaps with a faith that has grown weak and to people we want to reintroduce to the beauty of the Gospel," he said.
The cardinal recently appointed auxiliary Bishop Arthur L. Kennedy, to serve in the new role of episcopal vicar for the new evangelization of the Archdiocese of Boston.
The new office will follow the mandate set by Pope Benedict XVI when he appointed Archbishop Rino Fisichella to head the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization. The office is planning speakers, media initiatives and celebrations for the Year of Faith.
"During this Year of Faith, let us pray like the friend in the parable, banging on the door in the middle of the night -- asking shamelessly, but trustingly knowing that our Heavenly Father is always there for us. He has given us our life and our faith; He has given us Christ and the Bread of Life in the Eucharist; and He will also give us the Spirit whenever we ask, seek and knock," the cardinal said, before concluding his homily.
The Year of Faith started on Oct. 11 and concludes on Nov. 24, 2013. Local resources for the Year of Faith are available at www.yearoffaithboston.org