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Monday, July 4, 2005


VATICAN CITY, JUL 4, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Chorbishop Philip B. Najim, procurator of the Chaldean patriarchate to the Holy See and patriarchal visitor to Chaldeans in Europe, as apostolic visitor without episcopal title to the Chaldean faithful in Europe.

  On Saturday, July 2, it was made public that he appointed Fr. Lambert Bainomugisha, chancellor of the archdiocese of Mbarara (area 10,980, population 2,205,862, Catholics 856,168, priests 131, religious 282), Uganda, as auxiliary of the same archdiocese. The bishop-elect was born in Kashumba, Uganda in 1961 and ordained a priest in 1991.
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VATICAN CITY, JUL 4, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Cardinal Francis Arinze, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

 - Cardinal Javier Lozano Barragan, president of the Pontifical Council for Health Care Ministry.

 - Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela, archbishop of Madrid, Spain.

  On Saturday, July 2, he received in separate audiences:

 - Cardinal William Wakefield Baum, major penitentiary emeritus.

 - Cardinal Julian Herranz, president of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts.

 - Cardinal Sergio Sebastiani, president of the Prefecture for Economic Affairs of the Holy See.

 - Archbishop Agostino Vallini, prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signature.

 - Bishop Heinz Josef Algermissen of Fulda, Germany.

 - Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.
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FOR THE OCCASION OF THE "MAKE POVERTY HISTORY" RALLY in Edinburgh, Scotland, the Holy Father sent a message, through Cardinal Secretary of State Angelo Sodano, to Cardinal Keith Patrick O'Brien, archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh. The rally was held on Saturday, July 2, in Edinburgh, in the lead up to the G8 summit meeting, due to be held near Edinburgh from July 6-8. In his message, the Pope writes that "people from the world's richest countries ... should urge their leaders to fulfil the pledges made to reduce world poverty, especially in Africa, by the year 2015." He also asks world leaders to "play their part in ensuring a more just distribution of the world's goods."

THE SPECIAL COUNCIL FOR AFRICA OF THE SYNOD OF BISHOPS, presided by Archbishop Nikola Eterovic, secretary general of the Synod of Bishops, celebrated its 14th meeting on June 21 and 22 in the synod's Rome headquarters. The aim of the meeting - attended by four cardinals and seven archbishops and bishops - was to continue preparations for the Second Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for Africa, called by John Paul II and confirmed by Benedict XVI. The participants presented various proposals concerning the themes of the forthcoming special assembly: evangelization, the social activities of the Church, reconciliation and peace. The next meeting is scheduled to take place on February 23 and 24, 2006.

A DELEGATION FROM THE GOVERNMENTAL COMMISSION FOR RELIGIOUS AFFAIRS of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, headed by its director, Ngo Yen Thi, was in Rome from June 27 to July 2. According to a communique, the visit, the second since that of 1992, aimed to promote relations between Church and State and to achieve a more direct and deep understanding of the Holy See. During the work sessions in the Secretariat of State, attention was given to various aspects of the Catholic Church's activities in Vietnam, especially to advances made since the last meeting and problems that still remain. Special attention was given to a new Vietnamese government law concerning beliefs and religions published in November last year. The question of relations between Vietnam and the Holy See was also examined, in the hope that they become normalized as soon as possible.
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VATICAN CITY, JUL 4, 2005 (VIS) - Benedict XVI today received a group of pilgrims from the archdiocese of Madrid, Spain, accompanied by their archbishop, Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela, and his auxiliaries. The visit marked the close of the third diocesan synod the theme of which was: "The transmission of faith, lived and practiced in communion with the Church."

  The Pope pointed out how during the synod assembly "the ecclesial community became conscious of being a 'family in faith'," and a "symbol of unity for all society. It is a Catholic community, and Catholic means precisely that it is an open gathering, repository of a universal message destined for all human beings. ... This Catholic community today makes its pilgrimage to Rome as a sign of communion with Peter's Successor and, consequently, with the Universal Church."

  "In a society thirsting for true human values and suffering so many divisions and fractures, the community of believers must become bearers of the light of the Gospel, in the certainty that charity is, in the first instance, the communication of truth."

  He went on: "To this end, the Church in Madrid wishes to be present in all areas of daily life, ... because the Spirit impels us to bring to all men and women the love that God the Father showed us in Jesus Christ. ... We must go to the confines of society in order to bring to everyone the light of Christ's message on the meaning of life, of family and of society, reaching those people who live in the desert of abandonment and poverty and loving them with the love of the Risen Christ."

  "Following the guidelines of the synod," he concluded, "seek to nourish yourselves spiritually with prayer and with an intense sacramental life; deepen your personal knowledge of Christ and walk with all your strength towards sanctity, 'the highest level of Christian life' as the beloved John Paul II used to say."
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VATICAN CITY, JUL 3, 2005 (VIS) - The recent publication of the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the forthcoming meeting of leaders of the G8 countries at Gleneagles, Scotland, one of the themes of which will be eradicating poverty in Africa, were the two main subjects of the Pope's reflections during today's Angelus.

  Benedict XVI pointed out that the publication of the compendium on June 28 had coincided with the opening of the cause of beatification of John Paul II, who had given that publication "a decisive impulse." He went on: "In an ideal dialogue between master and disciple, the compendium provides a broad exposition of the faith of the Church and of Catholic doctrine as contained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, published by my venerated predecessor in 1992. ... It sheds light on the extraordinary unity of the mystery of God, on His salvific plan for all humanity and on the centrality of Jesus."

  "How important it is," the Holy Father exclaimed, "at the beginning of this third millennium, for the Christian community unanimously to proclaim, teach and bear integral witness to the truths of faith, and of Catholic doctrine and morals." The Pope expressed the hope that the compendium may contribute to "the renewal of catechesis and evangelization, ... so that all Christians ... in all environments may become catechists and evangelizers, helping others to encounter Christ."

  In remarks following the Angelus, Benedict XVI mentioned the summit meeting of heads of State and government of the world's most industrialized nations (G8), scheduled to begin on July 6 at Gleneagles, Scotland. One of the themes of the meeting is Africa, "a frequently forgotten continent," the Pope recalled, adding: "With all my heart, I wish full success to this meeting, in the hope that it may lead to sharing the costs of debt reduction in solidarity, implementing concrete measures for eradicating poverty and promoting authentic development in Africa."
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VATICAN CITY, JUL 2, 2005 (VIS) - Yesterday in New York, U.S.A., Archbishop Celestino Migliore, Holy See permanent observer to the United Nations, delivered a speech before the substantive session of the U.N. Economic and Social Council.

  "The Holy See," said Archbishop Migliore, "is pleased to associate itself with those who support the accord reached in London recently by the G8 finance ministers to cancel the debts of 18 heavily indebted poor countries (HIPC). Debt remission measures, he added, "are just the start of that path, first of all because the measure in question needs to be extended to some 38 HIPC countries."

  "The G8 leaders, meeting at Gleneagles, Scotland, on July 6-8 next, must now pay attention to the demands of their own people and of civil society, and place before their respective legislatures bills that will lead to the immediate fulfillment of the accord's promises."

  In concluding remarks, Holy See permanent observer referred to development funding, specifically highlighting  the "lack of financing for basic scientific research and for the industrial development of pharmaceutical products to combat the major tropical diseases such as malaria, as well as the lack of research in favor of agriculture in poorer regions."
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VATICAN CITY, JUL 2, 2005 (VIS) - This morning, the Holy Father received a group of prelates from the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops' Conference, who have just completed their "ad limina" visit.

  In his address, the Pope recalled the recent elections in the country, which "have laid the basis for what I trust will be a new beginning in the process of national reconciliation and the moral rebuilding of society." On this subject, he thanked the bishops for the "significant contribution to the electoral process" they offered "to the Catholic faithful and to all your fellow-citizens" with the joint pastoral statement they published last year. "As you rightly noted, ... responsibility for the common good demands that all members of the body politic work together in laying firm moral and spiritual foundations for the future of the nation."

  Benedict XVI told the African prelates that in their preaching and teaching "the faithful should be able to hear the voice of the Lord Himself, a voice that speaks with authority of what is right and true, of peace and justice, of love and reconciliation, a voice that can console them in the midst of their troubles and show them the way forward in hope."

  Despite current difficulties, the Holy Father went on, "the Church in Zimbabwe can rejoice in the presence of so many communities vibrant in faith, a significant number of vocations to the priesthood and religious life, and the presence of a committed laity devoted to various works of the apostolate. These gifts of God's grace are at once a consolation and a challenge to an ever more profound and integrated catechesis aimed at training the faithful to live fully their Christian vocation."

  After encouraging the prelates "to work together to ensure suitable and comprehensive catechetical preparation for all the faithful," the Holy Father stressed the need to help priests "present the fullness of the Catholic faith in a way which truly addresses and responds to people's difficulties, questions and problems."

  The Pope also referred to the importance of supporting national seminaries "in their challenging task of providing seminarians with an adequate human, spiritual, doctrinal and pastoral formation; while the younger clergy would greatly benefit, in the first years of their priestly ministry, from a program of spiritual, pastoral and human accompaniment guided by experienced and exemplary priests."

  Benedict XVI concluded by stressing that the bishops' "concern for sound catechesis and an integral religious education must also extend to the system of Catholic schools, whose religious identity needs to be strengthened, for the good not only of their students, but of the entire Catholic community in your country."
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