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Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Briefing on the eleventh meeting of the Council of Cardinals

Vatican City, 16 September 2015 (VIS) – The director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J., held a briefing this morning on the results of the eleventh meeting of the Council of Cardinals with the Holy Father, which began on Monday 14 November.

“The proposal for a new Congregation, provisionally entitled “Laity, Family and Life”, was again taken into consideration”, said Fr. Lombardi. “In this regard Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi, designated by the Holy Father in recent months to prepare a study on the feasibility of the project, was heard. At the end of their reflections the Council presented to the Pope a proposal orientated towards the implementation of the project.

Consideration of the proposal for a new Congregation dedicated to “Charity, Justice and Peace” was resumed and further reflections were made without yet reaching, however, a conclusive proposal by the Council.

The Cardinals went on to reflect on the procedures for the appointment of new bishops, or more specifically on the qualities and requisites for candidates in view of the needs of today’s world, and on the related issue of information gathering. Naturally the theme will need to be explored further and developed in collaboration with the competent Dicasteries concerned.

The Prefect of the new Secretariat for Communication reported to the Council on the first steps taken so far and in particular on the appointment of a group to draw up the Statutes for the new Dicastery. The working group has been constituted and has already commenced activity. It is made up of representatives of the institutes variously involved. The Statutes, while taking into account the progressive phase of consolidating the different entities that will form the Secretariat, defines the structure of the Dicastery as “definitive”. Particular attention will be given to evaluating legal and administrative aspects of the communication activities of the Holy See. The regulations will subsequently be drafted and issued.

The Cardinals expressed their unanimous appreciation and stressed that, despite the progressive nature of the work, precise guidance must be given to the institutions involved so that, as the Motu Proprio requires, the reform can make decisive progress towards integration and unitary management.

The theme proposed during the last session of the Council regarding issues linked to the abuse of minors was again taken into consideration. The matter of how to implement proposals was explored in further depth, especially with regard to the possibility of accelerating the resolution of the many cases still pending.

A draft Preamble of the new Constitution was also re-evaluated.

Cardinal Oscar Andres Rodríguez Maradiaga was absent for health reasons.

The next session of the Council is scheduled to be held from 10 to 12 December”.

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