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Friday, September 8, 2006


VATICAN CITY, SEP 8, 2006 (VIS) - The following prelates died in recent weeks:

 - Cardinal Johannes Willebrands, prefect emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, on August 2, at the age of 96.

 - Archbishop Francois Abou Mokh B.S., former auxiliary of Antioch of the Greek-Melkites, Syria, on August 11, at the age of 85.

 - Archbishop Luciano Pedro Mendes de Almeida S.J., of Mariana, Brazil, on August 27, at the age of 75.

 - Bishop Manuel Pereira da Costa, emeritus of Campina Grande, Brazil, on July 25, at the age of 90.

 - Bishop Marko Culej of Varazdin, Croatia, on August 19 at the age of 68.

 - Bishop Antonio Batista Fragoso, emeritus of Crateus, Brazil, on August 12 at the age of 85.

 - Bishop Pietro Giachetti, emeritus of Pinerolo, Italy, on August 6 at the age of 83.

 - Bishop Americo Henriques, emeritus of Huambao, Angola, on August 14 at the age of 82.

 - Archbishop Juan Ignacio Larrea Holguin, emeritus of Guayaquil, Ecuador, on August 27 at the age of 79.

 - Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo Higuera, apostolic nuncio, on August 2 at the age of 76.

 - Bishop Alfred Maria Oburu Asue C.M.F., of Ebebiyin, Equatorial Guinea, on August 27 at the age of 59.

 - Bishop Francisco Peralta y Ballabriga, emeritus of Vitoria, Spain, on August 23 at the age of 95.

- Archbishop Simeon Anthony Pereira, emeritus of Karachi, Pakistan, on August 22 at the age of 78.

 - Archbishop Ioannis Perris, emeritus of Naxos, Andros, Tinos and Mykonos, Greece, on August 20 at the age of 89.

 - Bishop Alphonse-Marie Runiga Musanganya, emeritus of Mahagi-Nioka, Democratic Republic of the Congo, on August 11 at the age of 81.

 - Bishop Justin Tetemu Samba of Musoma, Tanzania, on August 23 at the age of 55.

 - Bishop Stanislaw Smolenski, former auxiliary of Krakow, Poland, on August 8 at the age of 91.
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VATICAN CITY, SEP 8, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Archbishop Alberto Bottari de Castello, apostolic nuncio to Japan.

 - Mihail Dobre, ambassador of Romania, on a farewell visit.

 - Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education (for Seminaries and Educational Institutions).

  This evening, he is scheduled to receive in audience Cardinal Camillo Ruini, vicar general of His Holiness for the diocese of Rome.
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VATICAN CITY, SEP 8, 2006 (VIS) - The new ambassador of Chile to the Holy See, Pedro Pablo Cabrera Gaete today presented his Letters of Credence to the Holy Father who, in his address to the diplomat, praised "the spiritual proximity of the Chilean people to Peter's Successor, a proximity created over history in unison with the Church's constant activities through her members and institutions."

  The Pope recalled how Chile is approaching its bicentenary as a republic "with the hopes that arise from a particularly significant period in which notable development goals have been achieved, institutions have become consolidated and a climate of peaceful coexistence seems to have been established." He also highlighted how these factors, "alongside the opening of horizons beyond your own confines, are certainly cause for satisfaction, and a new call to a sense of responsibility in order to uphold the highest ideals which are what give rise to all true progress and, in the end, make that progress possible."

  "In this regard," Benedict XVI said, "the Church accomplishes her mission by announcing the Gospel of Christ, projecting her light onto the reality of the world and human beings, thereby proclaiming their most exalted dignity." The Church, he added, "shares the thirst for a justice undiminished by insufficient respect for the dignity of man and the inalienable rights deriving from that dignity."

  Among these rights, "mention must first be made of the right to life in all phases of its development and in whatever situation it may be; ... the right to form a family based on the bonds of love and faithfulness established in marriage between a man and a woman, something which must be protected and supported; ... and the primary right to educate children according to the ideals with which the parents want to enrich them."

  "The dear land of Chile," said the Holy Father, "has abundant historical and spiritual resources with which to face the future with well-founded hopes of attaining new goals of humanity, thus also contributing to supporting bonds of cooperation and peaceful coexistence in the concert of nations."

  The Pope concluded his remarks to the diplomat by recalling the Chilean Sts. Teresa de los Andes and Fr. Alberto Hurtado, and expressed the hope that "the many gifts of nature the Creator has granted the sons and daughters of Chile," may continue "to give fruits that open a more prosperous future to new generations, that they may be lovers of peace and maintain a transcendent sense of life, in accordance with the country's centuries-old Christian roots."
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VATICAN CITY, SEP 8, 2006 (VIS) - This morning at Castelgandolfo, the Pope received prelates from the Canadian (Ontario) Conference of Catholic Bishops who have just completed their "ad limina" visit.

  Addressing them in English, the Pope indicated that "the fundamental task of the evangelization of culture is the challenge to make God visible in the human face of Jesus. In helping individuals to recognize and experience the love of Christ, you will awaken in them the desire to dwell in the house of the Lord, embracing the life of the Church. This is our mission."

  "The split between the Gospel and culture, with the exclusion of God from the public sphere" is one of the "impediments to the spread of Christ's Kingdom" said the Holy Father. "Canada has a well-earned reputation for a generous and practical commitment to justice and peace, and there is an enticing sense of vibrancy and opportunity in your multicultural cities. At the same time, however, certain values ... have evolved in the most disturbing of ways. In the name of 'tolerance' your country has had to endure the folly of the redefinition of spouse, and in the name of 'freedom of choice' it is confronted with the daily destruction of unborn children. When the Creator's divine plan is ignored the truth of human nature is lost."

  "Democracy succeeds," the Holy Father insisted, "only to the extent that it is based on truth and a correct understanding of the human person. Catholic involvement in political life cannot compromise on this principle. ... In your discussions with politicians and civic leaders I encourage you to demonstrate that our Christian faith, far from being an impediment to dialogue, is a bridge, precisely because it brings together reason and culture."

  In the context of the evangelization of culture, Pope Benedict mentioned "the fine network of Catholic schools" in Ontario. Then, after highlighting how "catechesis and religious education is a taxing apostolate," he thanked teachers and catechists "who strive to ensure that your young people become daily more appreciative of the gift of faith which they have received."

  The Pope identified relativism as "a particularly insidious obstacle to education today." For this reason, there is a particular need for "the apostolate of 'intellectual charity' which upholds the essential unity of knowledge, guides the young towards the sublime satisfaction of exercising their freedom in relation to truth, and articulates the relationship between faith and all aspects of family and civic life."
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