Each month, Pope Benedict XVI announces his special prayer intentions—particular things that he wishes all Catholics to pray for that month. (When, for instance, we pray the rosary and say the prayers at the end for the intentions of the Holy Father, these are the intentions for which we're praying.)
Pope Benedict offers two intentions every month, one general, and one for a particular Catholic missionary activity. Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for January 2010 is "That young people may learn to use modern means of social communication for their personal growth and to better prepare themselves to serve society." Far too much of the material available on the internet is morally corrupting, and many websites, even when they have the best of intentions, present information that is false and misleading. But there are good resources available that can strengthen our faith, and we can make use of these means of communication for good as well as ill. (If I didn't believe that, I wouldn't be running the About.com GuideSite to Catholicism.) As parents, however, we have to help steer our children toward those resources that are spiritually beneficial and make a great effort to keep them away from those materials that could harm them.
The Holy Father's mission intention for January 2010 is "That every believer in Christ may be conscious that unity among all Christians is a condition for more effective proclamation of the Gospel." From the beginning of his pontificate, Pope Benedict has been chiefly concerned with Christian unity, and there is no better time than the beginning of the year to join him in A Devout Exercise for the Unity of the Church and a prayer To Obtain the Reunion of the Christians of the East.
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