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Friday, May 22, 2009


VATICAN CITY, 22 MAY 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences sixteen prelates from the Peruvian Episcopal Conference, on their "ad limina" visit:

- Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne, archbishop of Lima, Peru, on his "ad limina" visit, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishops Adriano Tomasi Travaglia O.F.M., Guillermo Martin Abanto Guzman, Raul Antonio Chau Quispe.

- Bishop Kay Martin Schmalhausen Panizo S.C.V, prelate of Ayaviri.

- Bishop Mario Busquets Jorda, prelate of Chuquibamba.

- Bishop Jose Maria Ortega Trinidad, prelate of Juli.

- Bishop Juan Carlos Vera Plasencia M.S.C., prelate of Caraveli.

- Bishop Domenico Berni Leonardi O.S.A., prelate of Chuquibambilla.

- Bishop Miguel La Fay Bardi O. Carm., prelate of Sicuani.

- Bishop Ricardo Garcia Garcai, prelate of Yauyos.

- Bishop Fortunato Pablo Urcey O.A.R., prelate of Chota.

- Bishop Sebastian Ramis Torrens T.O.R., prelate of Huamachuco.

- Bishop Rafael Alfonso Escudero Lopez-Brea, prelate of Moyobamba.

- Bishop Miguel Irizar Campos C.P. of Callao.

- Bishop Raimundo Revoredo Ruiz C.M., prelate emeritus of Juli

This evening he is scheduled to receive in audience Cardinal William Joseph Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
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VATICAN CITY, 22 MAY 2009 (VIS) - The programme of Benedict XVI's forthcoming pastoral visit to Cassino and Montecassino, Italy, was made public today. The visit is due to take place this Sunday, 24 May.

The Holy Father will depart from the Vatican heliport at 9 a.m. and is expected to land at Cassino's Salveti sports ground half an hour later. At 10.15 a.m. he will preside at a Eucharistic concelebration and pronounce a homily in the city's Piazza Miranda. Then, having prayed the Regina Coeli, he will travel by car to the abbey of Montecassino, making a brief stop on the way at the "Casa della Carita" (House of Charity) in Cassino.

At 1.30 p.m. the Holy Father will have lunch at the abbey of Montecassino. Then, having addressed a brief greeting to the monastic community, at 5 p.m. he will celebrate Vespers with Benedictine abbots and communities of Benedictine monks and nuns in the basilica of the abbey, where he will also pronounce a homily. Subsequently he will make a private visit to the Polish military cemetery at Montecassino.

The Pope will depart by helicopter at 6.30. p.m. and is expected to reach the Vatican at 7 p.m.


VATICAN CITY, 22 MAY 2009 (VIS) - This morning in the Vatican, Benedict XVI received in separate audiences first Georgi Parvanov, president of the Republic of Bulgaria, then Gjeorge Ivanov, president of the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Both men, each accompanied by his wife and leading a delegation, have come to Rome for the commemoration of Sts. Cyril and Methodius.

In his address to the Bulgarian delegation, the Pope highlighted how the spiritual heritage of these two saints, co-patrons of Europe, "has marked the lives of the Slavic peoples; their example has supported the witness and faithfulness of countless Christians who, over the centuries, consecrated their lives to spreading the message of salvation, while at the same time working for the construction of a more just and united society".

"May their spiritual witness abide in you nation", he added, "so that Bulgaria, thanks also to this source of light and hope, may make an effective contribution to building a Europe faithful to its Christian roots. And may the values of solidarity and justice, of freedom and peace ... find even greater force and solidity in Christ's eternal teaching, as translated into the lives of His disciples in all times".

Then, speaking English in his audience with the delegation from the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the Holy Father indicated that the memory of Sts. Cyril and Methodius "invites all of us who are united by the one faith in Jesus Christ, to contemplate their heroic evangelical witness. At the same time we are challenged to conserve the patrimony of ideals and values that they have transmitted by word and deed".

"Your beloved homeland, marked by the influence of these two great saints, seeks to become more and more a place of peaceful encounter and dialogue between the country's many social and religious spheres. My hope, which I renew today with all my heart, is that you may continue to progress on this path".


VATICAN CITY, 21 MAY 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Bishop Salvador Gimenez Valls, auxiliary of Valencia, Spain, as bishop of Menorca (area 701, population 86,976, Catholics 78,695, priests 40, religious 61), Spain.
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