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Tuesday, September 26, 2006


VATICAN CITY, SEP 26, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office today released a communique concerning the present ecclesial position of Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo. The text of the communique is given below:

   "With great concern, the Holy See has followed the recent activities of Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo, emeritus of Lusaka, Zambia, with his new association of married priests, spreading division and confusion among the faithful.

  "Church representatives of various levels have tried in vain to contact Archbishop Milingo in order to dissuade him from persisting in actions that provoke scandal, especially among the faithful who followed his pastoral ministry in favor of the poor and the sick.

  "Bearing in mind the understanding shown, also recently, by Peter's Successor towards this aged pastor of the Church, the Holy See has awaited with vigilant patience the evolution of events which, unfortunately, have led Archbishop Milingo to a position of irregularity and of progressively open rupture of communion with the Church, first with his attempted marriage and then with the ordination of four bishops on Sunday, September 24, in Washington D.C., U.S.A.

  "For this public act both Archbishop Milingo and the four ordinands have incurred excommunication 'latae sententiae,' as laid down in Canon 1382 of the Code of Canon Law. Moreover, the Church does not recognize, nor does she intend to recognize in the future, these ordinations and all ordinations deriving from them; and she considers the canonical status of the four supposed-bishops as being that they held prior to this ordination.

  The Apostolic See, attentive to the unity and peace of the flock of Christ, had hoped that the fraternal influence of people close to Archbishop Milingo would cause him to rethink and return to full communion with the Pope. Unfortunately the latest developments have made these hopes more unlikely.

  "At times of ecclesial suffering such as these, may prayers intensify among all the community of the faithful."
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VATICAN CITY, SEP 26, 2006 (VIS) - Made public today was a Message dated September 8, from Cardinal Angelo Sodano, then secretary of State, to Francesco Frangialli, secretary general of the World Tourism Organization (WTO), for the 27th World Tourism Day, which is due to be celebrated on September 27. The Message has been published in various languages including English.

  Cardinal Sodano passes on the "cordial greetings of His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI," to the organizers of World Tourism Day, the theme of which this year is: "Tourism enriches." And he observes how this subject "offers the opportunity to reflect on how further to qualify a culture of travel and human mobility such as exists in the different types of contemporary tourism."

  "Tourism is an undisputed source of well-being," writes the cardinal, "because it helps to drive the economies of nations. ... Furthermore, in the diverse sectors connected with tourist activity millions of persons are employed," and "in the reciprocal welcome between visitor and host one can realize that exchange of the goods of the earth and of culture which renders human life more fraternal and united."

  Cardinal Sodano continues by recalling how the WTO "has on numerous occasions recalled that tourism is above all an affair of human beings. The enrichment that it can produce must not, therefore, be simply economic or material," rather it must "promote an authentic human and social development thanks to the growing opportunity that it offers for a sharing of goods, for rich cultural exchanges, for contemplating natural or artistic beauty, for a comparison between different mentalities, traditions and religions."

  In order for this to be possible, it is necessary that all individuals and groups active in the tourism sector "encourage the formation of specific competences and then offer dynamic guarantees for the welcoming of tourists."

  "Only thus will the 'new Areopagus' of tourism and leisure become a resource for true human enrichment for all, without excluding those who come from underprivileged conditions on account of their natural or socio-cultural origins."
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VATICAN CITY, SEP 26, 2006 (VIS) - This morning in the Holy See Press Office, a conference was held to present the World Congress of Catholic Television, due to be held in Madrid, Spain, from October 10 to 12, on the theme: "Rapid Development." Participating in today's conference were: Archbishop John P. Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications; Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J., director the Vatican Television Center (CTV) and speaker at the forthcoming congress; Fr. Jose Maria Gil, executive secretary of the Spanish Episcopal Conference; and Leticia Soberon of the international organizational committee for the congress.

  Archbishop Foley affirmed that the aim of the congress is "to reflect upon the nature of television, study the opportunities it offers the Church, and evaluate the possibilities of combining these initiatives, bringing them together in the most effective way."

  For organizational reasons, said the archbishop, the number of participants in the congress has been limited to 250. They represent the television sector, Catholic production companies, episcopal commissions of social communication and communications faculties of universities in various countries.

  Apart from reflecting on themes associated with "the identity of Catholic television," the forthcoming congress will also have to consider, said the president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, "practical matters such as the economic and administrative aspects of the television industry, the professional expertise of staff, the quality and variety of program formats, the quality of information, the possibilities offered by technological changes, etc."

  For his part, Fr. Lombardi affirmed that "Catholic television stations in the world - the majority of which are in Europe and America - are highly variegated. ... There are TV stations created and maintained by episcopal conferences or large dioceses (SAT2000 in Italy, Popular TV in Spain, KTO in France, etc.); and there are TV stations that have arisen from initiatives of religious movements or organizations, or of single individuals (EWTN in U.S.A., Cancao Nova in Brazil, etc.)."

  Apart from the television stations themselves, Fr. Lombardi highlighted the presence of "many production centers of Catholic-inspired television programs" that offer their services in regions or nations where Catholic television cannot exist, and of "institutions capable of providing financial support to ecclesial initiatives."

  With reference to CTV, of which he is the director, Fr. Lombardi indicated that one of its aims is "to serve Catholic TV stations, which are practically all interested in images and information on the activity of the Holy Father and the Vatican; however not all of them are currently informed about CTV's services, and not all have the technological possibilities to take advantage of them."

  "We in the Church," Fr. Lombardi concluded, "always wish to put communication at the service of communion, that is, of reciprocal understanding, of dialogue and of peace. We do so at various levels: a more specifically local level, another that covers a larger area - regional or national - and yet another that is universal (that of the Pope's service for the unity of the Church). These levels must come together, complementing one another, because each has its own specific competencies, experience and richness."

  Fr. Jose Maria Gil expressed his appreciation to the Holy See for having chosen Madrid as the location for the congress, and extended his thanks to Letizia Ortiz, Princess of Asturias, who will be president of honor, "the which," he said "demonstrates the interest of civil society in this important ecclesial event."

  Fr. Gil went on to confirm that the event will be attended by "around 250 participants" from some 50 countries on all continents, especially Latin America. "They will reflect upon the great aims of the congress," he said, "which will also be open to any Internet users who may wish to participate through the website: www.worldcongresstv.com.

  There will, Fr. Gil continued, "be representatives from all sectors involved in the audiovisual field: large telecommunications operatives (Telefonica, Hispasat); big networks (EWTN, Cancao Nova, TV Seculo 21, ESNE-El Sembrador); diocesan and private Catholic TV stations, from the strictly religious and devotional to the more generally Christian-inspired; religious programs from public television; ... university faculties of social communication (the Pontifical Salesian University, the Pontifical Universities of the Holy Cross, and of Chile, Colombia and Argentina, the University of Navarra, of Murcia, etc.); journalists; ... technicians; ... business people; ... Catholic communication associations (SIGNIS); as well as communication commissions and departments from episcopal conferences (Germany, Italy, Portugal, Mali, Croatia, Ecuador, Peru, Spain, etc.) and from dioceses.

  "Particular mention must be made," he added, "of the eagerly-awaited contribution of Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J. on the service provided by the Vatican Television Center, a true point of reference for Catholic television all over the world."

  For her part, Leticia Soberon, expressed the hope that the congress may be "a starting point for the creation of a united and energetic network among Catholic organizations active in the field of television."

  "One of the most eagerly-anticipated aspects," she said, "is the 'program bank' which will facilitate the free exchange of TV programs between the various institutions. This project came into being following the concern felt by the larger television stations for the smaller and poorer ones, and with the aim of sharing productions of universal value. This initial move provoked a spontaneous desire, also on the part of the smaller operators, to share their own productions. This generosity on everyone's part has been clear since Medellin, at the Latin American Congress of Catholic TV, but it also involves may other institutions all over the world."
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