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Thursday, June 1, 2006


VATICAN CITY, JUN 1, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed:

 - Fr. Jerome Beau of the clergy of the archdiocese of Paris, France, rector of the archdiocesan seminary, and Fr. Jean-Yves Nahmias of the clergy of the archdiocese of Paris, vicar general, as auxiliaries of the archdiocese of Paris (area 105, population 2,221,000, Catholics 1,554,700, priests 1,286, permanent deacons 93, religious 3,557). Bishop-elect Beau was born in Paris in 1957 and ordained a priest in 1984. Bishop-elect Nahmias was born in Saint-Mande, France in 1957 and ordained a priest in 1989.

 - Fr. Bernard Unabali, vicar general of the diocese of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea, as auxiliary of the same diocese (area 11,230, population 185,000, Catholics 148,900, priests 26, religious 63). The bishop-elect was born in Bolioko, Papua New Guinea in 1957 and ordained a priest in 1985.
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VATICAN CITY, JUN 1, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Archbishop Alfred Clifton Hughes of New Orleans, U.S.A.

 - Archbishop Antoine Hamid Mourany, emeritus of Damascus of the Maronites.

 - Daniel Perez del Castillo, ambassador of Uruguay on his farewell visit.
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VATICAN CITY, JUN 1, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy Father's general prayer intention for June is: "That Christian families may lovingly welcome every child who comes into existence and surround the sick and the aged, who need care and assistance, with affection."

  His mission intention is: "That pastors and the Christian faithful may consider inter-religious dialogue and the work of acculturation of the Gospel as a daily service to promote the cause of the evangelization of peoples."
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VATICAN CITY, JUN 1, 2006 (VIS) - This morning in the Vatican, the Holy Father received the Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museums on the occasion of their pilgrimage to Rome for the five-hundredth anniversary of the founding of the Vatican Museums. The Patrons of the Arts is an American association founded in 1983, that contributes to financing the restoration and maintenance of the works of art in the Vatican Museums.

  The Pope thanked the association for its "continuing interest, which is motivated not only by a sense of stewardship for the incomparable cultural patrimony of the Vatican Museums, but also by a generous commitment to the Church's evangelizing mission."

  He continued: "In every age Christians have sought to give expression to faith's vision of the beauty and order of God's creation, the nobility of our vocation as men and women made in His image and likeness, and the promise of a cosmos redeemed and transfigured by the grace of Christ. The artistic treasures which surround us are not simply impressive monuments of a distant past. Rather, for the hundreds of thousands of visitors who contemplate them year after year, they stand as a perennial witness to the Church's unchanging faith in the Triune God who, in the memorable phrase of St. Augustine, is Himself 'Beauty ever ancient, ever new'."

  "May your support of the Vatican Museums," he concluded, "bear abundant spiritual fruits in your own lives and advance the Church's mission of bringing all people to the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ, 'the image of the invisible God,' in Whose Eternal Spirit all creation is reconciled, restored and renewed."
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VATICAN CITY, JUN 1, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received participants in the third meeting of the 11th ordinary council of the Secretariat General of the Synod of Bishops. They, under the leadership of Archbishop Nikola Eterovic, are gathering and organizing the proposals that emerged from the last synod, held in October 2005 on the theme, "The Eucharist: source and summit of the life and mission of the Church."

  "Today's meeting," the Holy Father told them, "is an appropriate occasion to emphasize once more the importance of charity in the activities of the pastors of the Church. ... Nourishing the Lord's flock is a ministry of watchful love that calls for total dedication, complete commitment of energy and, if necessary, the sacrifice of life. The Eucharist is, above all, the source and the hidden permanent impulse of our mission."

  He went on: "In his ecclesial existence, the bishop represents the image of Christ Who nourishes us with His flesh and His blood. From the Eucharist, the pastor draws the strength to exercise that special pastoral charity which consists in dispensing the food of truth to Christian people."

  "The truth of Love cannot be silenced, because it is the very essence of God. Preaching it from the rooftops is not just 'amoris officium' but a vital message for mankind in all times. The truth of evangelical love concerns all men, and all of man, and compels the pastor to proclaim it without fear or reticence, never yielding to the conditioning of the world."

  The Pope concluded his brief remarks be reminding bishops that, "in a time such as our own, characterized by the growing phenomenon of globalization, it becomes ever more necessary to bring the truth of Christ and His Gospel of salvation to everyone vigorously and clearly. There are innumerable areas in which to proclaim and lovingly bear witness to the truth: so many people are hungry and cannot be left to languish without sustenance."
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VATICAN CITY, JUN 1, 2006 (VIS) - At 8 p.m. yesterday, the traditional procession marking the end of the month of May wound its way from the Church of St. Stephen of the Abyssinians - located near the apse of the Vatican Basilica - to the Grotto of Lourdes in the Vatican Gardens. Hundreds of people participated in the ceremony, which was presided by Archbishop Angelo Comastri, His Holiness' vicar general for Vatican City State.

  Benedict XVI arrived at the Grotto at 9 p.m. and, before imparting his apostolic blessing, delivered a brief address.

  The Pope first recalled how this year the month of May was "characterized by the arrival of the image of the Virgin of Fatima in St. Peter's Square on the 25th anniversary of the assassination attempt against the beloved John Paul II, and also by my apostolic trip ... to Poland, where I was able to visit the places dear to my great predecessor."

  At the Shrine of Jasna Gora in Czestochowa, he said, "I understood how much our celestial Protectress accompanies her children's journey, and does not disregard supplications addressed to her with humility and faith. Once again, together with you, I wish to thank her for having accompanied me during my visit to the dear land of Poland. I also wish to express my gratitude to Mary for her support in my daily service to the Church. I know I can rely on her help in all situations, indeed I know that she, with maternal intuition, meets all her children's needs and intervenes effectively in their support."

  Benedict XVI then highlighted how in the Virgin Mary's visit to her cousin Elizabeth - which the Church celebrates today as the Feast of the Visitation of Mary - "the hidden protagonist is Jesus. Mary carried Him in her womb as in a sacred tabernacle. ... Wherever Mary goes, there is Jesus."

  "May true Marian devotion never obscure or diminish faith and love for Jesus Christ, our Savior, the only mediator between God and man. ... Let us, then, entrust ourselves to her with filial devotion."

  The Pope concluded his address by asking the faithful to pray especially for the forthcoming vigil in St. Peter's Square on Saturday, June 3, when he will meet with new lay movements and communities "those promising groups that have blossomed in the Church following Vatican Council II."
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