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Tuesday, November 6, 2007


VATICAN CITY, NOV 6, 2007 (VIS) - The following prelates died in recent weeks:

 - Cardinal Rosalio Jose Castillo Lara S.D.B., president emeritus of the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State, on October 16 at the age of 85.

 - Bishop Ignacy Jez, emeritus of Koszalin-Kolobrzeg, Poland, on October 16 at the age of 93.

 - Bishop Juan N. Nilmar, emeritus of Kalibo, Philippines, on October 18 at the age of 91.

 - Archbishop Antonios Varthalitis A.A., emeritus of Corfu, Greece, on October 27 at the age of 83.
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VATICAN CITY, NOV 6, 2007 (VIS) - In the Holy See Press Office at midday today, a press conference was held to present a forthcoming international congress, "Ontogeny and Human Life," due to be held in Rome's Pontifical Athenaeum "Regina Apostolorum" from November 15 to 17.

  The event is part of the STOQ Project (Science, Theology and the Ontological Quest) which came into being in 2003 and involves five Roman pontifical universities (the Lateran, the Gregorian, the Salesian, the Holy Cross and the St. Thomas) as well as the Athenaeum "Regina Apostolorum." The project is patronized by the Pontifical Council for Culture and supported by the John Templeton Foundation and other institutions.

  During the press conference, Archbishop Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture, affirmed that the ultimate aim of the STOQ Project is "to contribute to dialogue between the various areas of research and study which have, in the modern age, gradually become separated from one another. This means building stable bridges and creating fruitful exchange between science, philosophy and theology by means of dialogue among experts in those various fields."

  The international congress, which will be relayed to other academic centers through video linkups, is due to be attended by scientists, researchers and students.

  Archbishop Ravasi also announced that in 2009, for the bicentenary of the birth of Darwin and the 150th anniversary of the publication of his book "The Origin of Species," a congress will be held in the Pontifical Gregorian University to examine the much-debated question of evolutionism: "Evolution and Evolution Theories."
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VATICAN CITY, NOV 6, 2007 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office released the following communique:

  "Today in the Apostolic Palace of the Vatican, the Holy Father Benedict XVI met with King Abdallah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia. The sovereign subsequently went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. who was accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

  "The meetings took place in a cordial atmosphere and provided an opportunity to consider questions close to the heart of both sides. In particular, the commitment to inter-religious and inter-cultural dialogue aimed at peaceful and fruitful coexistence between individuals and peoples was reiterated, as was the importance of collaboration between Christians, Muslims and Jews for the promotion of peace, justice and spiritual and moral values, especially in support of the family.

  "The Vatican authorities expressed their hope for the prosperity of all the inhabitants of the country, and mention was made of the positive and industrious presence of Christians.

  "Finally, views were exchanged on the situation in the Middle East and on the need to find a just solution to the conflicts affecting the region, especially that between Israelis and Palestinians."
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