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Wednesday, September 30, 2009


VATICAN CITY, 30 SEP 2009 (VIS) - During his general audience, celebrated this morning in St. Peter's Square, the Pope reminisced about his recent apostolic trip to the Czech Republic, which took place from 26 to 28 September.

  The Holy Father gave thanks to God for his journey which "was a true pilgrimage and, at the same time, a mission into the heart of Europe" on the theme: "The love of Christ is our strength". This strength, he explained, "inspires and animates true revolutions, peaceful and liberating, and upholds us in moments of crisis, enabling us to arise once more when the freedom, so arduously regained, risks losing itself and the truth it contains".

  On the first stage of his journey, in the church of Our Lady Victorious where the famous statue of the Infant Jesus of Prague is venerated, Benedict XVI gave assurances that he had prayed "for all children, for parents, for the future of the family. The true 'victory' we ask of Mary today is the victory of love and life in families and in society", he said.

  The Pope then recalled how, in his address to the political and civil authorities and members of the diplomatic corps, he had mentioned "the indissoluble bond that must always exist between freedom and truth. We must not be afraid of truth, because it is a friend of man and his freedom. Indeed, only by sincerely seeking truth, goodness and beauty can we truly offer a future to the young people of today and to future generations".

  "Leaders in the fields of politics and education must know how to draw from the light of that truth which is the reflection of the eternal wisdom of the Creator. And they are called to bear witness in person to this with their own lives".

  The Holy Father went on: "For the communities of Central and Eastern Europe this a difficult time: to the consequences of the long winter of atheist totalitarianism are being added the harmful effects of a certain form of Western secularisation and consumerism. Hence, I encouraged everyone to draw fresh energy form the risen Lord in order to become evangelical leavening in society and commit themselves, as is already happening, to charitable work and, even more so, to education".

  During the two Eucharistic celebrations of his Czech trip - first in Brno then in Stara Boleslav, site of the martyrdom of St. Wenceslas - the Pope "presented a message of hope founded upon faith in Christ".

  Talking then about the ecumenical meeting he had attended, the Holy Father highlighted how "the struggle to proceed towards ever fuller and more visible unity among believers in Christ makes our shared commitment to rediscovering the Christian roots of Europe stronger and more effective".

  During the encounter with the academic community "I underlined the role of universities, ... as a vital institution for society, a guarantee of freedom and development", said Pope Benedict.

  "Twenty years after the so-called 'Velvet Revolution'", he concluded, "I again presented the idea of integral human formation, based on a unity of knowledge rooted in truth, in order to counter a new dictatorship, that of relativism linked to the dominance of technology. Humanistic and scientific culture cannot be separated, they are two sides of the same coin. The Czech lands themselves remind us of this, being home to great writers like Kafka and to abbot Mendel, pioneer of modern genetics".
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VATICAN CITY, 30 SEP 2009 (VIS) - Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for October is: "That Sunday may be lived as the day on which Christians gather to celebrate the risen Lord, participating in the Eucharist".

  His mission intention is: "That the entire People of God, to whom Christ entrusted the mandate to go and preach the Gospel to every creature, may eagerly assume their own missionary responsibility and consider it the highest service they can offer humanity".
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VATICAN CITY, 30 SEP 2009 (VIS) - Archbishop Celestino Migliore, permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, yesterday addressed the 64th UN General Assembly which, he noted, is focusing on "effective responses to global crises: strengthening multilateralism and dialogue among civilizations for international peace, security and development".

  Speaking English the papal nuncio highlighted how the various G8 and G20 meetings made clear "the necessity to give legitimacy to the political commitments assumed, confronting them with the thought and needs of the entire international community, so that the devised solutions would be able to reflect the points of view and the expectations of the populations of all continents".

  "The more the interdependence of peoples increases", the archbishop went on, "the more the necessity of the United Nations becomes evident", as an organisation "capable of responding to the obstacles and increasing complexity of relations between peoples and nations. ... The United Nations will advance toward the formation of a true family of nations to the extent that it assumes the truth of the inevitable interdependence among peoples, and to the extent that it takes up the truth about the human person, in accordance with its Charter".

  Referring then to "the nature of development and the role of donor and recipient countries", Archbishop Migliore noted that "true development necessarily involves an integral respect for human life which cannot be disconnected from the development of peoples. Unfortunately in some parts of the world today, development aid seems to be tied rather to the recipient countries' willingness to adopt programmes which discourage demographic growth of certain populations by methods and practices disrespectful of human dignity and rights. ...Yet such a practice is by its nature not one of reciprocity but imposition, and to predicate the decision to give development aid on the acceptance of such policies constitutes an abuse of power".

  The Holy See permanent observer also touched on "the equity of the international commercial system and world financial architecture", expressing the hope that "the creation of permanent sources of jobs, stability of work, the just retribution of local production and the availability of public and private credit for production and work, especially in the poorest countries" will prevent "new and more serious global crises".

  Turning then to the principle of the "responsibility to protect", as formulated at the 2005 World Summit, Archbishop Migliore said: "The recognition of the ... dignity of every man and woman, ensures that governments always undertake with every means at their disposal to prevent and combat crimes of genocide, ethnic cleansing, and any other crimes against humanity. Thus, recognizing their interconnected responsibility to protect, States will realise the importance of accepting the collaboration of the international community as a means of fulfilling their role of providing responsible sovereignty".

  The permanent observer specifically mentioned the "suffering, frustration and hardships" of the Honduran people "from the already too long political upheaval", and he called on all parties "to make every effort to find a prompt solution in view of the good of the people of Honduras". Then, with reference to the recently concluded summit on climate change, he concluded by affirming that "the protection of the environment continues to be at the forefront of multilateral activities, because it involves in cohesive form the destiny of all nations and the future of every individual man and woman".


VATICAN CITY, 30 SEP 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed:

 - Jean-Marie Le Mene, president of the "Foundation Jerome Lejeune" of Paris, France, as an ordinary member of the Pontifical Academy for Life.

 - As members of the presidential committee of the Pontifical Council for the Family: Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi, archbishop of Milan, Italy; Cardinal Keith Michael Patrick O'Brien, archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Scotland; Cardinal Sean Patrick O'Malley O.F.M. Cap., archbishop of Boston, U.S.A.; Cardinal Odilo Pedro Scherer, archbishop of Sao Paulo, Brazil; His Beatitude Fouad Twal, patriarch of Jerusalem of the Latins; Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan, Philippines, and Archbishop Francisco Gil Hellin of Burgos, Spain.

 - As members of the Pontifical Council for the Family: Attila and Julia Gergel, Hungary; Jaime Armando Miguel and Ligia Maria Moniz da Fonseca, India; David E. and Mary Joan Osatohanmwen Osunde, Nigeria; John S. and Claire Grabowski, U.S.A.; Umberto Diaz Victoria and Isabel Botia Aponte, Colombia; Leon Botolo Magoza and Marie Valentine Kisanga Sosawe, Democratic Republic of Congo; Naser and Amira (Simaan) Shakkour, Israel; Tomas Melendo Granados and Lourdes Millan Alba, Spain, and Jose Luis and Veronica Villasenor, Mexico.

 - As consultors of the Pontifical Council for the Family: Msgr. Livio Melina, president of the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family, Rome; Msgr. Augusto Sarmiento, professor at the faculty of theology of the University of Navarra, Spain; Msgr. Brice de Malherbe, professor at the "Ecole Cathedrale" and at the faculty of Notre Dame of Paris, France; Fr. Edoardo Scognamiglio, O.F.M. Conv., minister provincial of the Friars Minor Conventual in Naples, Italy; Pierpaolo Donati, professor at the department of sociology of the University of Bologna, Italy; Francesco Belletti, member of the national consultancy for family pastoral care of the Italian Episcopal Conference's office for the pastoral care of the family; Stefano Zamagni, professor at the faculty of economics of the University of Bologna, Italy; Rafael Navarro Valls, professor of law at the "Universidad Complutense" of Madrid, Spain; Nicolas Jouve de la Barreda, professor of genetics at the "Universidad de Alcala", Spain; Salvatore Martinez, president of the "Mons. Francesco Di Vincenzo" Institute for human promotion, Italy; Jose de Jesus Hernandez Ramos, counsellor of the Doha International Institute For Family Studies and Development, Mexico; Frank and Julie Laboda, U.S.A.; Germina Namatovu Ssemogerere, consultor of the "Capacity Building Programme for Ministry of Local Government Civil Service Personnel", Uganda; Eugenia Scabini, dean of the faculty of psychology of the Sacred Heart Catholic University of Milan, Italy; Teresa Stanton Collet, professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law of Minneapolis, U.S.A.; Susanne Tiemann, professor of social law at the "Katholische Fachhochschule Nordrhein Westfalen" of Cologne, Germany, and Michaela Heereman Von Zuydtwyck, volunteer of the "Elternverein Nordrhein Westfalen" Association, Germany.
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