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Tuesday, February 19, 2008


VATICAN CITY, 19 FEB 2008 (VIS) - On Saturday, 1 March, to mark the Sixth European Day for Universities, the Holy Father will preside at a Marian prayer vigil in the Paul VI Hall. The theme of the vigil will be: "Europe and the Americas together to build a civilisation of love".

  The Day has been promoted by the Council of European Episcopal Conferences (CCEE) and the vicariate of Rome's office for pastoral care in universities.

  The university students gathered in the Paul VI Hall will be linked by satellite to other students in various European and American cities: Naples, Italy; Bucharest, Romania; Toledo, Spain; Avignon, France; Minsk, Belarus; Washington DC, U.S.A.; Mexico City, Mexico; Havana, Cuba, Aparecida, Brazil, and Loja, Ecuador.

  At 5 p.m. the Holy Father will lead the praying of the Rosary, then address some words to the participants before distributing copies of his Encyclical "Spe salvi" to a number of student representatives.

  Also for the occasion of this European Day, a congress is due to be held at Rome's Pontifical Gregorian University from 28 February to 1 March on the theme: "Europe and the Americas together towards integral and solidary development". The event has been promoted by the vicariate of Rome's office for pastoral care in universities together with the European Commission's office in Italy, and the Italian ministries for communication, for university research and for foreign affairs".

  The congress will begin with opening addresses on the theme of "The shared roots and historical ties of the relationship between Europe and the Americas" to be given by Florencio Hubenak of the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina "Santa Maria de los Buenos Aires", and by Bianca Maria Tedeschini Lalli of the "Universita degli Studi Roma Tre".

  The meeting will then continue with three main sessions, the first on: "Europe and the Americas in the global society", the second on: "The role of university formation in facing development challenges", and the third on: "University cultures and models in globalisation".

  The meeting will come to an end on the morning of 1 March with two round table discussions on "The brain drain problem: U.S.A. - Latin America - Europe" and "Experiences of and prospects for university co-operation for integral and solidary development".
.../EUROPEAN DAY UNIVERSITIES/...                VIS 20080219 (390)

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