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Monday, May 3, 2004


VATICAN CITY, MAY 3, 2004 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

 - Appointed Bishop Eugene Tremblay, auxiliary of Quebec, Canada, as bishop of Amos (area 128,500, population 99,780, Catholics 93,983, priests 45, religious 133), Canada. He succeeds Bishop Gerard Drainville whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese was accepted in accordance with Canon 401, para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law.

- Appointed Bishop Jose de Queiros Alves, C.SS.R., of Menongue, Angola, as metropolitan archbishop of Huambo (area 29,500, population 1,956,000, Catholics 1,056,000, priests 65, religious 300), Angola. The archbishop-elect was born in Soalhaes, Portugal  in 1941, ordained a priest in 1966 and a bishop in 1986.

 - Appointed Bishop Socrates Buenaventura Villegas, auxiliary of Manila, the Philippines as bishop of Balanga (area 1,373, population 606,000, Catholics 484,800, priests 37, religious 37), the Philippines.

- Appointed Fr. Artur Grzegorz Mizinski of the clergy of the archdiocese of Lublin, Poland, chancellor of the metropolitan curia and docent of Canon Law at the Catholic University of Lublin, as auxiliary of the same archdiocese (area 9,108, population 1,124,414, Catholics 1,093,215, priests 1,267, religious 1,089). Bishop-elect Mizinski was born in 1965 in Opole Lubelskie and was ordained a priest in 1989.
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 3, 2004 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

- Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.

- Bishop Gerhard Ludwig Mueller of Regensburg, Germany.

- Eight prelates from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on their "ad limina" visit:

    - Cardinal Adam Joseph Maida, archbishop of Detroit, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishops Earl Alfred Boyea, Walter A. Hurley, John M. Quinn, Francis R. Reiss and Moses Bosco Anderson, emeritus.

    - Bishop Patrick Ronald Cooney of Gaylord.

- Bishop Kevin Michael Britt of Grand Rapids.

- Bishop James A. Murray of Kalamazoo.
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 3, 2004 (VIS) - According to a communique published this afternoon, a Holy See delegation returned to Rome today following a six-day visit to Vietnam. The delegation included Msgrs. Pietro Parolin, under-secretary for Relations with States, Luis Mariano Montemayor, nunciature councillor and Barnaba Nguyen Van Phuong, bureau chief at the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

 "The delegation," said the communique, "met the president and members of the Permanent Council of the Episcopal Conference of Vietnam as well as the bishops of the ecclesiastical province of Hanoi.

  "In a positive climate, the delegation discussed the life and activity of the Catholic Church in the country with the Office for Religious Affairs, presided over by Ngo Yen Thi.

  "The delegation then had a meeting with Le Cong Phung,  vice-minister of Foreign Affairs, and Nguyen Huy Quang, vice president of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam. On various occasions the topic of relations between Vietnam and the Holy See was touched upon, emphasizing the steps already taken toward normalizing relations.

  "Lastly, the delegation made a visit to the dioceses of Xuan Loc and Ban Me Thuot where they celebrated the Eucharist in a climate of intense ecclesial communion and where they received expressions of deep affection and fidelity to the Holy Father. They also met with authorities of the respective civil provinces. Other ecclesial meetings took place in Hanoi and in Ho Chi Minh City."


VATICAN CITY, MAY 3, 2004 (VIS) - John Paul II will make a trip to Bern, Switzerland on the occasion of a national gathering of Catholic youth in the country which will take place on June 5 and 6.  A more detailed itinerary will be published soon.

  The papal plane will depart from Rome's Fiumicino Airport on Saturday, June 5 at 9:45 a.m. and will land in Payerne Airport in Switzerland at 11:30 a.m.  On Sunday June 6, the Holy Father will leave for Rome by plane at 7 p.m. and is scheduled to arrive at Ciampino Airport at 8:45 p.m.
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 2, 2004 (VIS) - From his study window, Pope John Paul today prayed the Regina Coeli with the faithful who had gathered below in St. Peter's Square, including those who had attended the ordination Mass earlier in the Vatican Basilica. In remarks made before the prayer, he noted that Europe is living historic days because ten new countries yesterday entered the European Union, including his native Poland.

   "The unity of European peoples," he said, "if it wishes to be lasting, cannot be just economic and political. As I recalled in my trip to Campostella in November 1982, the soul of Europe today remains united because it has as a reference point common human and Christian values. The history of the formation of European nations goes side by side with evangelization. Thus, notwithstanding  the spiritual crises that have marked the life of the continent up to our days, its identity cannot be understood without Christianity."

  The Holy Father underscored that "precisely for this reason the Church has wished, in recent years, to give a number of contributions to the consolidation of (Europe's) cultural and spiritual unity. ... Only a Europe which does not remove, but rather rediscovers its own Christian roots can be up to the great challenges of the third millennium: peace, dialogue among cultures and religions, and the preservation of creation. All believers in Christ in both Eastern and Western Europe, thanks to open and sincere ecumenical cooperation, are called to offer their own contribution."

  Following the Regina Coeli, John Paul II extended his "cordial greetings" to the 26 priests he had just ordained in St. Peter's Basilica, as well as to their family and friends. "Today we celebrate the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. I turn my special thoughts to all those who are involved in the path of formation to the priesthood and consecrated life, and I ask for prayers for many and holy vocations in the Church."

  He also had special greetings for the cardinals, bishops, religious and laity of Poland, as well as civil leaders and diplomatic representatives, on the occasion of the country's entry on May 1 into the European Union.. He noted that, as he was speaking, an outdoor Mass, presided over by Cardinal Egan of New York, was being celebrated near Warsaw in which representatives of the Polish episcopacy and European episcopacies participated. "Together with you," the Pope said, "I entrust to the wise, just and  merciful Divine Providence the future of Europe, May it grow on the foundation of the love of Christ."


VATICAN CITY, MAY 2, 2004 (VIS) - At 9 a.m. today, the fourth Sunday of Easter, the Pope celebrated Mass in the Vatican Basilica and conferred priestly ordination upon 26 deacons of the diocese of Rome.

  The Holy Father said that the liturgy "invites us to set our gaze upon Christ, the Good Shepherd. ... The only Son of the Father, the Good Shepherd of humanity, who died on the Cross and rose on the third day. This is the Good News that the apostles brought to all peoples, starting in Jerusalem, animated by the power of the Holy Spirit."

  When addressing the new priests, John Paul II thanked "the families, the priests who took care of formation and the growth of your faith and everyone, along with your parish communities and the ecclesial realities to which you belong, who has helped you to discover the 'gift and mystery' of your vocation, and to say yes to the Lord's call."

  "I ordain you priests," he continued, "at a time in which, also here in Rome, strong cultural tendencies seem to want to make people, especially young people and families, forget God. But do not be afraid: God will always be with you! With His help you will be able to take up the paths that lead to the heart of every man and to announce to him that the Good Shepherd gave His life for him and that He wants him to participate in His mystery of love and salvation. In order to carry out this task Jesus must be the center of your life and you must be in intimate union with Him in prayer, daily personal meditation, faithfulness to the Liturgy of the Hours and above all in daily celebration of the Eucharist. If you are filled with God, you will be true apostles of the new evangelization because no one gives what his heart does not contain."
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 1, 2004 (VIS) - The following telegram was sent in Pope John Paul's name by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, secretary of State, to Bishop Petrus Canisius Mandagi upon learning of the many victims of an outbreak of violence in Ambon, Indonesia:

  "His Holiness Pope John Paul II has been informed of the new outbreak of violence in Ambon, which has resulted in the loss of numerous lives, grave injuries and the pillaging and burning of houses, school and Churches. At this time of suffering and grave anxiety, he wishes to assure the whole Christian community of his paternal affection and solidarity, and his heartfelt prayer that public order and peaceful relations between the various religious and social groups will be quickly restored.

  "His Holiness has prayed to God our merciful Father for the peace of those who have died and the comfort and consolation of all the suffering and those who mourn.

  "To you as the Pastor of the Catholic community, to the priests, the missionaries, the men and women religious, and to all the faithful the Holy Father cordially imparts his Apostolic Blessing as a pledge of strength in the Lord."

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