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Friday, May 14, 2004


VATICAN CITY, MAY 14, 2004 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

- Accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the archdiocese of Thare and Nonseng, Thailand, presented by Archbishop Lawrence Khai Saen-Phon-On, upon having reached the age limit.

- Appointed Fr. Tarcisio Isao Kikuchi, S.V.D., provincial superior of the Verbites in Japan, as bishop of Niigata (area 33,517, population 4,893,401, Catholics 7,549, priests 34, permanent deacons 1, religious 119), Japan. The bishop-elect was born in 1958 in Iwata, Japan and was ordained a priest in 1986. The Holy Father accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese presented by Bishop Francis Keiichi Sato, O.F.M. upon having reached the age limit.

- Appointed Bishop Francis Xavier Osamu Mizobe, S.D.B., of Sendai, Japan as bishop of Takamatsu (area 18,800, population 4,142,157, Catholics 5,492, priests 48, religious 122), Japan. He accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese, presented by Bishop Joseph Satoshi Fukahori upon having reached the age limit.

- Appointed Archbishop Ramon C. Arguelles, military ordinary of the Philippines, as metropolitan archbishop of Lipa (area 3,165, population 1,972, 562, Catholics 1,892,746, priests 151, religious 272), the Philippines.

- Appointed Fr. Hector Epalza Quintero, P.S.S., rector of Major Seminary of the archdiocese of Manizales, Colombia as bishop of Buenaventura (area 7,000, population 325,000, Catholics 317,836, priests 40, religious 94), Colombia.  The bishop-elect was born in 1940 in Convencion, Colombia and was ordained a priest in 1965.

- Appointed Bishop Jose F. Oliveros of Boac, the Philippines, as bishop of Malolos (area 2,2672, population 2,820, 350, Catholics 2,467,108, priests 225, religious 333), the Philippines.

- Appointed Fr. Emmanuel T. Cabajar, C.Ss.R., former member of the General Council of the Redemptorists, as bishop of Pagadian (area 2,860, population 976,681, Catholics 784,868, priests 41, religious 52), the Philippines. Bishop-elect Cabajar was born in 1942 in Handayan Getafe, the Philippines and was ordained a priest in 1966.

- Appointed Bishop Leo M. Drona, S.D.B., bishop of San Jose, the Philippines, as bishop of San Pablo (area 1,203, population 2,363,881, Catholics 1,917,507, priests 164, religious 438), the Philippines.

- Appointed Fr. Gaston Kashala Ruwezi, S.D.B., vicar of the Inspectorate of Central Africa, as bishop of the diocese of Sakania Kipushi (area 40,000, population 204,000, Catholics 110,000, priests 41, religious 46), Democratic Republic of Congo. The bishop-elect was born in 1961 and was ordained a priest in 1990.

- Appointed Msgr. Richard Gagnon, vicar general of the archdiocese of Vancouver, Canada, as bishop of the same archdiocese (area 95,275, population 705,113, Catholics 90,000, priests 39, religious 97). Bishop-elect Gagnon was born in 1948 in Lethbridge, Canada and was ordained a priest in 1983.

- Appointed Fr. Emmanuel C. Trance, up to November 2003 rector of the minor seminary "St. Vincent Ferrer" in the archdiocese of Jaro, the Philippines, as coadjutor bishop of Catarman (area 3,498, population 500,639, Catholics 365,967, priests 41, religious 43), the Philippines. Bishop-elect Trance was born in 1953 in Calinog Iloilo, Philippines and was ordained a priest in 1978.
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 14, 2004 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

- Cardinal Paul Shan Kuo-hsi, bishop of Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

- Three prelates from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (Region XI) on their "ad limina" visit:

    - Bishop Patrick Joseph McGrath of San Jose in California.

    - Bishop Daniel Francis Walsh of Santa Rosa.

- Bishop Stephen Edward Blaire of Stockton.

- Participants in the fourth meeting of the Post-synodal Council of the Special Assembly for Europe of the Synod of Bishops: Cardinals Miloslav Vlk, archbishop of Prague, Czech Republic, Josip Bozanic, archbishop of Zagreb, Croatia and Jose Saraiva Martins, C.M.F., prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints; Archbishops Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz of Mother of God in Moscow, Russia, Joseph Dore of Strasbourg, France, and Nikola Eterovic, secretary general of the Synod of Bishops; Msgr. Fortunato Frezza, under-secretary of the Synod of Bishops.
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 14, 2004 (VIS) - Yesterday in the apostolic nunciature in Berlin, Germany, Archbishop Erwin Josef Ender, apostolic nuncio in Germany, and the president of the Senate and mayor of Brema, Henning Scherf, exchanged the instruments of ratification of the Accord that was signed on November 21, 2003 between the Holy See and the Hanseatic Free City of Brema in order to regulate relations between the Catholic Church and the city-state.  The accord goes into effect today.
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 14, 2004 (VIS) - This morning in the Holy See Press Office, the Instruction by the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People entitled "Erga migrantes caritas Christi" (The Love of Christ towards Migrants) was presented.

  The document, which was published in English, Spanish, German, French, Italian and Portuguese, was approved by the Holy Father on May 1, the feast of St. Joseph the Worker, and is signed by Cardinal Stephen Fumio Hamao and Archbishop Agostino Marchetto, respectively president and secretary of the dicastery. It consists of an introduction, four parts, a conclusion and an appendix. 

  The introduction addresses the topic "The Migration Phenomenon Today." The four parts are entitled: "Migration, Sign of the Times and Concern for the Church";  "Migrants and the Pastoral Care of Welcome"; "Workers in a Pastoral Care of communion"; and "Structures of Missionary Pastoral Care." The conclusion, "Universal Mission," is followed by the appendix, "Juridical pastoral regulations," which includes the duties of those who work in pastoral care and various ecclesial organizations that deal with migrants.

  In the presentation, Cardinal Hamao and Archbishop Marchetto write: "Taking into consideration the new migration flows and their characteristics, the Instruction 'Erga migrantes caritas Christi' aims to update the pastoral care of migration, thirty-five years after the publication of Pope Paul VI's Motu Proprio 'Pastoralis migratorum cura' and the Congregation for Bishops' related Instruction 'De pastorali migratorum cura' ('Nemo est')."

  "The composition of today's migration also requires an ecumenical vision of the phenomenon because of the presence of many migrants not in full communion with the Catholic Church. It also imposes the need for inter-religious dialogue because of the increasing number of migrants belonging to other religions, particularly Muslims, in traditionally Catholic countries, and vice-versa."

  The Instruction also emphasizes the need for "the promotion of pastoral action that is both faithful to tradition and open to new developments. These include pastoral structures which must also be apt to guarantee communion between pastoral agents in the field of migration and the local hierarchy in the receiving country. The latter continues to be the decisive organ of the solicitude of the Church for migrants."

  The migration problem "raises the ethical problem of establishing a new international economic order with a more equitable distribution of the goods of the earth, in which the international community is considered a family of peoples whose relations are governed by international law."

  The presentation continues to stress "the need for 'inculturation', the vision of Church as communion, mission and People of God, the ever new importance of a specific pastoral care for migrants, the dialogical-missionary commitment of all the members of the Mystical Body of Christ, and the consequent duty of forming a culture of welcome and solidarity. These introduce the analysis of pastoral questions that require responses, specifically the pastoral approaches among Catholic migrants, both of the Latin and the Eastern rites, of migrants who belong to other Churches or Ecclesial Communities, and those who are followers of other religions, Islam in particular."

  The president and secretary of the pontifical council said that in the text there is "a more detailed description, or pastoral and juridical definition, of pastoral agents (namely, chaplains/missionaries and their national coordinators, diocesan/eparchial priests, religious priests and brothers, women religious, lay people, lay associations and ecclesial movements), whose apostolic commitment is seen and considered in view of a 'pastoral care of communion', an integrated one."

  The document also points out "the integration of pastoral structures (those already established and those proposed) and the ecclesial inclusion of migrants in ordinary pastoral care, with full respect for their legitimate diversity and of their spiritual and cultural patrimony, also in view of the formation of a concretely Catholic Church. Such an integration is an essential condition for pastoral care, for and with migrants, to become a significant expression of the universal Church and 'missio ad Gentes'."

  The document concludes with the "Juridical pastoral regulations" which recalls "the duties, tasks and roles of pastoral agents and of the various Church entities in charge of the pastoral care of migration."

  For full text, click here: http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/migrants/documents/rc_pc_migrants_doc_20040514_erga-migrantes-caritas-christi_en.html.
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 14, 2004 (VIS) - Cardinal Stephen Fumio Hamao, president of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples, presided this morning at the presentation in the Holy See Press Office of the council document "Erga Migrantes Caritas Christi ("The Love of Christ towards Migrants"). Joining him were Archbishop Agostino Marchetto and Fr. Michael Blume, S.V.D:, respectively secretary and under-secretary of this dicastery.

  Saying that "the phenomenon of human mobility has systematically been, since last century, at the center of attention of the Holy See," Cardinal Hamao gave an overview of the history of the pontifical council and the Church's "pastoral initiatives with regard to a full integration of immigrants into the milieux that welcomes them."

  He said that after World War II the need for assistance to migrants and refugees called for "an authoritative intervention of the Holy See," concretized in 1952 with Pope Pius XII's Apostolic Constitution "Exsul Familia," which the cardinal called "the magisterial magna carta on migrations. It is in fact the first official Holy See document which faced in a overall and systematic way, from the pastoral and canonical points of view, the problem of spiritual assistance to migrants."

  Cardinal Hamao said that offices to assist migrants were formed on national levels, often within episcopal conferences, but it was not until 1970 that there was an office with the Roman Curia when Pope Paul VI created the Pontifical Commission for the Pastoral Care of Migrations and Tourism. In 1989, under John Paul II, that office became the Pontifical Council of Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples.

  The cardinal listed the numerous categories of peoples that fall within the purview of the pontifical council: economic migrants, refugees, tourists and pilgrims, seafarers, gypsies, circus and amusement park workers, aviation people, and students studying outside of their native country. He noted that "the Church has also undertaken a dialogue with Islam, Muslim migrants and with other religious denominations. ... The Church does not therefore look only at herself  but at the entire world."

  Archbishop Marchetto pointed out that "contemporary migrations constitute the most vast movement of persons of all times. In these last decades this phenomenon, which now involves more than 200 million people, ... constitutes a complex, social, cultural, political, economic, religious and pastoral reality."

  The council secretary indicated that "the document, after rapidly glancing at some of the traits peculiar to today's migratory phenomenon (globalization; demographic transitions underway in countries becoming industrialized; the sharp increase of inequality between the North and South of the world; the proliferation of conflicts and civil wars), underscores the great difficulties that migration generally causes in families and individuals, especially women and children."

  "Certainly," affirmed Archbishop Marchetto, "fifty years ago images of refugees and exiled and deported persons due to wars - such as in the Balkans or Africa - had not yet entered into our homes, nor had images of sea vessels overloaded with clandestine Albanians, Kurds or Africans. Television had not yet shown us the faces of thousands of human beings - bewildered, exhausted and starving - in search of work, security, and a future for themselves and their families. We had not yet seen the scenes of death, the terrorized faces of our brothers and sisters, their devastated bodies, the desolation of their villages destroyed by violence, hatred and vendettas." The Church, he stressed, even then, was there to guarantee first aid, food, and lodging. "The Church is always there, close to the old and the new migrants."

  In his talk, Fr. Blume said that "the spirit that permeates the instruction is one of dialogue." He specifically referred to three types of dialogue: dialogue within the Catholic Church, with other Churches and ecclesial communities and with other religions.

  Speaking about dialogue within the Catholic Church, he recalled that the document is addressed "especially to Catholics, pastors and the faithful, members of the community  as well as migrants. ... The pastoral experience teaches us that when migrants feel understood and at ease, they integrate more easily into the community and they contribute to it." In addition, he added, "it is necessary that in countries that embrace migrants there be pastoral structures that promote their identity. ... All of this requires dialogue, especially among Churches in the countries of origin and those in the destination countries and with the Congregation for Eastern Churches."

  Fr. Blume went on to speak about dialogue with other Churches and ecclesial communities, saying this "strengthens unity, where it is possible, and charity and promotes greater reciprocal understanding. Like all authentic dialogue, this type of dialogue is based on adhering to the Catholic identity and should be aware of existing problems among Christians who are unfortunately still separate.  Therefore, avoid 'easy irenicism', or the other extreme 'proselytism'."

  Referring to dialogue with other religions, the council undersecretary emphasized that "it must be based on our identity and provoke reciprocal respect and the discovery of the human and religious values of the other." Also, he added, "it requires much patience and perseverance."

  "Dialogue and evangelization," he concluded, "are not opposed to each other.  Dialogue, which bears witness to Christian charity, also requires an explanation."
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VATICAN CITY, MAY 14, 2004 (VIS) - Nearing the end of their "ad limina" visit, the bishops of the Church in California, Nevada and Hawaii were welcomed this morning by the Holy Father who continued his reflections to U.S. prelates on the 'munus sanctificandi' of bishops.
  "As Bishops you must be at the forefront of this spiritual journey of sanctification," said the Pope. "Your episcopal ministry of ecclesial service ... demands a pattern of life that unequivocally rejects any temptation to ostentation, careerism, or the recourse to secular models of leadership and instead requires you to bear witness to the 'kenosis' of Christ, in pastoral charity, humility and simplicity of life."

  John Paul II spoke of "the crisis of the loss of the sense of sin," and urged the bishops to have the courage to "address this today with particular urgency. While the effects of sin abound - greed, dishonesty and corruption, broken relationships and exploitation of persons, pornography and violence - the recognition of individual sinfulness has waned. In its place a disturbing culture of blame and litigiousness has arisen which speaks more of revenge than justice and fails to acknowledge that in every man and woman there is a wound which, in the light of faith, we call original sin."

  "Sin is an integral part of the truth about the human person," he said. "Given this reality, the bishop's duty to indicate the sad and destructive presence of sin, both in individuals and in communities, is in fact a service of hope. ... Let us boldly announce that indeed we are not the sum total of our weaknesses and failures! We are the sum of the Father's love for us, and capable of becoming the image of His Son!"

  The Holy Father then focussed on metanoia, or conversion, pointing to the parable of the Prodigal Son. "The prodigal son is in a certain sense all men and women. We all can be lured by the temptation to separate ourselves from the Father and thus suffer loss of dignity, humiliation and shame, but equally so we all can have the courage to turn back to the Father who embraces us with a love which, transcending even justice, manifests itself as mercy."

  He dedicated closing remarks to the Sacrament of Penance, "divinely instituted" and "the only ordinary way for the faithful to reconcile themselves with God and the Church. Though it cannot be denied that the profound power of this Sacrament is often considered today with indifference it is also the case that young people in particular readily give testimony to the graces and transforming benefits it bestows. ... I again appeal directly to you and to your priests: arm yourselves with more confidence, creativity and perseverance in presenting it and leading people to appreciate it."
 "As bishops, it is of special importance for you to have frequent recourse to the Sacrament of Reconciliation in order to obtain the gift of that mercy of which you yourselves have been made ministers."

  For full text of Pope's speech, click here: http://www.vatican.va/news_services/bulletin/news/14776.php?index=14776&lang=en.

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