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Wednesday, October 10, 2007


VATICAN CITY, OCT 10, 2007 (VIS) - St. Hilary of Poitiers, doctor of the Church, was the subject of Benedict XVI's catechesis during his general audience, which was held this morning in St. Peter's Square in the presence of 23,000 faithful.

  The saint was born in Poitiers around the year 310 and raised, probably as a pagan, in a family of local Roman aristocracy. After some time spent searching for truth, he converted to Christianity and was baptized. Elected as bishop of his hometown about 353, his opposition to Arianism - which denied the divinity of Christ - led to his being exiled to Phrygia by order of the emperor Constantius who had aligned himself with the decisions of a council held in Beziers at which the majority of the participating bishops were Arians. Following the emperor's death in 361 Hilary returned to Poitiers where he remained until his own demise six years later.

  In his most important work, "De Trinitate," Hilary "describes his personal journey to a knowledge of God and is concerned to show how Sacred Scripture clearly testifies to the divinity of the Son and His equality with the Father, not only in the New Testament but also in the Old where the mystery of Christ is already apparent," said the Pope.

  The bishop of Poitiers "develops all his Trinitarian theology on the basis of the formula of Baptism which the Lord Himself gives us, in the name of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."

  The Holy Father explained how St. Hilary presents "precise rules" for a correct reading of the Gospel when he indicates how "some pages of Scripture speak of Jesus as God, others underline His humanity, others still ... His pre-existence at the side of the Father ... His descent to death ... His resurrection."

  "Firm in his opposition to radical Arians, Hilary showed a more conciliatory spirit towards to those who were prepared to confess that the Son was like to the Father in essence, always seeking to lead them to a complete faith: ... not just likeness but equality ... in divinity."

  This is a "spirit of conciliation," said Pope Benedict, "which seeks to understand those people who have not yet arrived" at the truth and "helps them in a sprit of peace and with great theological intelligence to a full faith in the true divinity of Jesus Christ."

  "God the Father, being all love, is capable of fully communicating His divinity to the Son," the Holy Father concluded. "By taking on a human nature, the Son united all humankind to Himself. ... For this reason the path to Christ is open to everyone ... although it always requires individual conversion."
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VATICAN CITY, OCT 10, 2007 (VIS) - At the end of today's general audience in St. Peter's Square, the Pope recalled how "the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue between Catholics and Orthodox is currently holding its 10th plenary assembly in Ravenna, Italy, where it is deliberating upon a theological subject of particular ecumenical interest: the ecclesiological and canonical consequences of the sacramental nature of the Church - ecclesial communion, conciliarity and authority."

  "I ask you to join me in my prayer," said the Holy Father, "that this important gathering may help us to progress towards full communion between Catholics and Orthodox, and that we may soon be able to share the one chalice of the Lord."
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VATICAN CITY, OCT 10, 2007 (VIS) - The Office of Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff made public today the calendar of celebrations to be presided over by the Holy Father between the months of October 2007 and January 2008:


 - Sunday, 21: 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time. Pastoral visit to Naples.


 - Saturday, 20: At 4 p.m. in the cathedral square of Tubarao, Brazil, beatification of Servant of God Albertina Berkenbrock.

 - Sunday, 21: 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time. At 4 p.m. in the "Parque Municipal de Exposicoes" of Federico Westphalen, Brazil, beatification of Servants of God Manuel Gomez Gonzalez and Adilio Daronch.

 - Friday, 26: at 10 a.m. in the cathedral of Linz, Austria, beatification of Servant of God Franz Jagerstatter.

 - Saturday 27: at 4 p.m. in the Roman basilica of St. John Lateran, beatification of Servant of God Celina Chludzinska.

 - Sunday 28: 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time. At 10 a.m. in St. Peter's Square, beatification of 498 Spanish martyrs (1936-1939).


 - Monday, 5: At 11.30 a.m. at the altar of the Cathedra in the Vatican Basilica, Mass for the repose of the souls of cardinals and bishops who died during the course of year.


 - Sunday 11: 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time. At 10 a.m. in Chimpay, Argentina, beatification of Servant of God Ceferino Namuncura.

 - Sunday, 18: 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time. At 3 p.m. at the "Palazzetto dello Sport" of Novara, Italy, beatification of Servant of God Antonio Rosmini.


- Saturday, 1: At 5 p.m. in the Vatican Basilica, First Vespers for the first Sunday of Advent.

 - Saturday, 8: Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. At 4 p.m. in Rome's Piazza di Spagna, homage to Mary Immaculate.

 - Sunday, 16: 3rd Sunday of Advent. At 9 a.m., pastoral visit and Mass at the Roman parish of "Santa Maria del Rosario ai Maritiri Portuensi."

 - Monday, 24: Vigil of the Solemnity of the Birth of Our Lord. Midnight Mass in the Vatican Basilica.

 - Tuesday, 25: Solemnity of the Birth of Our Lord. At midday from the central loggia of the Vatican Basilica, "Urbi et Orbi" blessing.

 - Monday, 31: At 6 p.m. in the Vatican Basilica, First Vespers of thanksgiving for the past year.


 - Sunday, 2: 1st Sunday of Advent. At 4 p.m. in the Barradao Stadium of Sao Salvador da Bahia, Brazil, beatification of Servant of God Lindalva Justo de Oliveira.


 - Tuesday, 1: Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God and 41st World Day of Peace. Holy Father to preside at Mass in the Vatican Basilica at 10 a.m.

 - Sunday, 6: Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord. Holy Father to preside at Mass in the Vatican Basilica at 10 a.m.

 - Sunday, 13: Feast of the Baptism of Our Lord. Benedict XVI will preside at Mass in the Sistine Chapel at 10 a.m., during which he will impart the Sacrament of Baptism to a number of children.

 - Friday, 25: Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle. At 5:30 p.m. in the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls, celebration of Vespers.
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VATICAN CITY, OCT 10, 2007 (VIS) - According to a communique made public at midday today, Archbishop Paul Josef Cordes, president of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum," is due to meet with Patriarch Alexis II in Moscow.

  "The visit comes in the context of a series of meetings that the president of 'Cor Unum' will make in the Russian Federation between October 15 and 21," reads the communique. "From October 15 to 17 he will be at Novosibirsk, the capital of the region of Siberia where, accompanied by Bishop Joseph Werth, he will visit Caritas, the Franciscan school and the Sisters of Mother Teresa of Calcutta. In this area the Catholic Church has distinguished itself in recent years for the increase of charitable initiatives throughout the territory.

  "From October 18 to 21, Archbishop Cordes - as a guest of Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz - will participate in the work of Caritas groups throughout the Russian Federation. In Russia, this sector is at the basis of much fruitful collaboration with the Orthodox Church. The meeting is particularly significant because it is taking place a year and a half after the publication of Pope Benedict XVI's first Encyclical, which was dedicated to charity. It will, then, be an opportunity to verify how 'Deus caritas est' has inspired charitable commitment in this vast country.

  "The talks with bishops and volunteers of Russian Caritas on the influence of 'Deus caritas est,' the visit to Siberia and the meeting with Alexis III, make this trip an important stage of the mission of the Pontifical Council 'Cor Unum'."


ARCHBISHOP CELESTINO MIGLIORE, Holy See permanent observer to the United Nations in New York, spoke on October 9 during the 62nd session of the U.N. General Assembly which is currently studying the secretary general's report on the work of the organization. "To meet this ever growing need for humanitarian assistance," said the archbishop in his English-language address, "the United Nations should continue to work to promote partnerships with civil society that create a predictable and reactive humanitarian response." In closing, he expressed the hope that "this 62nd session of the General Assembly be strongly marked by a renewed sense of commitment and action towards not only achieving the Millennium Goals, but also completely fulfilling the vision of hope of this institution."

ARCHBISHOP CELESTINO MIGLIORE, Holy See permanent observer to the United Nations in New York, on October 9, addressed the third committee of the U.N. General Assembly which is considering "the implementation of the outcome of the World Summit for Social Development (1995) and of the 24th special session of the General Assembly." Speaking English, the archbishop used his speech to highlight how "the eradication of poverty and the full enjoyment of basic social rights by all individuals and their families is fundamentally a moral commitment."
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VATICAN CITY, OCT 10, 2007 (VIS) - The Holy Father yesterday received in audience Cardinal Joachim Meisner, archbishop of Cologne, Germany.
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VATICAN CITY, OCT 10, 2007 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Archbishop Jean-Paul Gobel, apostolic nuncio to Nicaragua, as apostolic nuncio to Iran.
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