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Thursday, September 15, 2005


VATICAN CITY, SEP 15, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

 - Accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of San Carlos de Ancud, Chile, presented by Bishop Juan Luis Ysern de Arce, upon having reached the age limit. He is succeeded by Coadjutor Bishop Juan Florindo Agurto Munoz O.S.M.

 - Appointed Agostino Paravicini Bagliani and Emilia Hrabovec as members of the Pontifical Committee for Historical Sciences.
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VATICAN CITY, SEP 15, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Cardinal Ignace Moussa I Daoud, prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches.

 - Shlomo Moshe Amar and Yona Metzger, chief rabbis of Israel, accompanied by an entourage.

  This evening he is scheduled to receive in separate audiences:

 - Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education.

 - Archbishop William Joseph Levana, emeritus of San Francisco, U.S.A., and prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, accompanied by Archbishop Angelo Amato S.D.B., secretary of the same congregation.
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VATICAN CITY, SEP 15, 2005 (VIS) - Benedict XVI today received bishops from the ecclesiastical circumscriptions of Monterrey, Morelia and San Luis Potosi (central and north east Mexico), who are in Rome on their "ad limina" visit. In his address to the prelates, the Pope recalled that Mexico faces "the challenge of transforming its social structures to bring them more into line with the dignity of individuals and their fundamental rights."

  The Pope went on: "Catholics, who still constitute the majority of the population, are called to participate in this task, discovering their commitment to their faith and the unitary meaning of their presence in the world. Otherwise, the 'split between the faith which many profess and their daily lives deserves to be counted among the more serious errors of our age'."

  The Holy Father then addressed the question of the breakdown, in some areas, of "healthy forms of coexistence and the management of public affairs," and of the increase of "corruption, impunity, infiltration of drug trafficking and organized crime. All this leads to various forms of violence, indifference and contempt for the inviolable value of life. On this matter, the post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation 'Ecclesia in America' clearly criticizes the 'social sins' of our times."

  "In Mexico too, people frequently live in situations of poverty. Nonetheless, many faithful display a faith in God, a religious sense accompanied by expressions rich in humanity, hospitality, fraternity and solidarity. These values are being endangered by migration abroad, where many work in precarious conditions, unprotected and struggling to face a cultural context very different from their own social and religious practices."

  The Holy Father emphasized that "human mobility is a pastoral priority in cooperative relations with the Churches of North America," explaining that "beyond economic and social factors, an appreciable unity exists, rooted in a shared faith and favoring a fraternal and solidary communion. This is the result of the various forms the presence and encounter with the living Christ have taken, and continue to take, in the history of America."

  However, belonging to an ecclesial community is difficult for many of the baptized who, "influenced by innumerable proposals for ways of thinking and acting, are indifferent to the values of the Gospel, and are even drawn towards forms of behavior that run counter to the Christian vision of life."

  "All this, united with the activity of sects and new religious groups in America, far from leaving you indifferent, must stimulate your particular Churches to offer the faithful more personalized religious care, strengthening the structures of communion and proposing a purified form of popular religiosity, in order to revive the faith of all Catholics. One pressing task is to form, responsibly, the faith of Catholics, so as to help them live in the world joyfully and courageously."

  The Holy Father concluded by indicating how "all this implies, in practical pastoral care, the need to revise our mentality ... and to broaden our horizons, ... in order to respond to the great questions facing mankind today. As a missionary Church, we are all called to understand the challenges that postmodern culture presents to the new evangelization of the continent. The Church's dialogue with the culture of our time is vital, both for the Church and for the world."
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