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Friday, November 16, 2007


VATICAN CITY, NOV 16, 2007 (VIS) - Today in the Vatican the Holy Father received around 100 superiors general from missionary societies of apostolic life. The religious are in Rome to participate in a meeting organized by the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, the president of which is Cardinal Ivan Dias.

  "Your assembly" the Pope told the group "bears eloquent witness to the continuing vitality of the missionary impulse in the Church and the spirit of communion uniting your members ... to the Successor of Peter and his universal apostolic ministry."

  "Within the hierarchical unity of the Body of Christ, enriched by the variety of gifts and charisms bestowed by the Spirit, communion with the successors of the Apostles remains the criterion and guarantee of the spiritual fruitfulness of all missionary activity. For the Church's communion in faith, hope and love is itself the sign and foretaste of that unity and peace which is God's plan in Christ for the whole human family.

  "One of the promising indications of a renewal in the Church's missionary consciousness in recent decades," added the Pope in his English-language address, "has been the growing desire of many lay men and women ... to cooperate generously in the 'missio ad gentes.' As Vatican Council II stressed, the work of evangelization is a fundamental duty incumbent upon the whole People of God."

  "Given the extent and the importance of the contribution made by [lay people], ... the proper forms of their cooperation should naturally be governed by specific statutes and clear directives respectful of each institute's proper canonical identity."

  Benedict XVI expressed his gratitude to all the missionaries who, "today as in the past, ... continue to leave their families and homes, often at great sacrifice, for the sole purpose of proclaiming the Good News of Christ and serving Him in their brothers and sisters. Many of them, also in our time, have heroically confirmed their preaching by the shedding of their blood, and contributed to establishing the Church in distant lands."

  Despite the "decrease in the number of young people who are attracted to missionary societies, and a consequent decline in missionary outreach, ... the mission 'ad gentes' is still only beginning," said the Pope.

  "While conscious of the challenges you face, I encourage you to follow faithfully in the footsteps of your founders, and to stir into flame the charisms and apostolic zeal which you have inherited from them, confident that Christ will continue to work with you and to confirm your preaching with signs of His presence and power."
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VATICAN CITY, NOV 16, 2007 (VIS) - "Problems and prospects of human development today, 40 years after 'Populorum progressio'," is the subject due to be examined at the forthcoming plenary session of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, to be held on November 20 and 21, and at the second world congress of ecclesial organizations active in that sector, to be held in Rome from November 22 to 24.

  According to a communique from the pontifical council, its members and consultors "will reflect on the current validity of the historical papal document, with particular emphasis on the moral aspects of development, on new forms of poverty and globalization, on conflicts and disarmament, and on safeguarding and protecting human rights."

  Among those due to participate in the plenary assembly alongside Cardinal Renato Martino and Bishop Giampaolo Crepaldi, respectively president and secretary of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, are Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga S.D.B., archbishop of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, and Archbishop Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya of Kisangani, Democratic Republic of the Congo, president of Pax Christi.

  More than 300 delegates from more than 80 countries on five continents are expected to participate in the second world congress of ecclesial organizations active in the sector of justice and peace. The specific theme of their meeting will be: "The 40th anniversary of 'Populorum progressio:' the development of all of man, the development of all mankind."

  Participants, the communique reads, "will study the new situations that have come into being in the world since the publication of the historic document, and the current challenges of development in the light of the Church's social doctrine, in particular the questions of human ecology, pluralism and inter-cultural dialogue, and new forms of government in the context of globalization. Particular attention will also be given to the Church's pastoral commitment to integral and solidary development in the world today."
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VATICAN CITY, NOV 16, 2007 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Archbishop Jean-Claude Perisset, apostolic nuncio to Germany.

 - Four prelates from the Kenya Episcopal Conference on their "ad limina" visit:

    - Bishop Philip Sulumeti of Kakamega.

    - Bishop Joseph Mairura Okemwa of Kisii.

    - Bishop Maurice Anthony Crowley S.P.S. of Kitale.

    - Bishop Patrick Joseph Harrington S.M.A. of Lodwar.

  This evening he is scheduled to receive in separate audiences three prelates from the Kenya Episcopal Conference on their "ad limina" visit:

    - Archbishop Boniface Lele of Mombasa.

    - Bishop Paul Darmanin O.F.M. Cap. of Garissa.

    - Bishop Francis Baldacchino O.F.M. Cap. of Malindi.
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VATICAN CITY, NOV 16, 2007 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Bishop Matthew Man-oso Ndagoso of Maiduguri, Nigeria, as archbishop of Kaduna (area 17,044, population 5,230,000, Catholics 382,638, priests 96, religious 35), Nigeria. The archbishop-elect was born in Lot, Nigeria, in 1960, he was ordained a priest in 1986 and consecrated a bishop in 2003. He succeeds Archbishop Peter Yariyok Jatau, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
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