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Friday, April 30, 2010


VATICAN CITY, 30 APR 2010 (VIS) - Yesterday evening in the Vatican's Paul VI Hall Benedict XVI attended a concert marking the fifth anniversary of his pontificate offered by Giorgio Napolitano, president of the Italian Republic. The concert, played by the Italian Youth Orchestra which is part of the Fiesole School of Music, included pieces by Giovanni Battista Sammartini, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig van Beethoven.

  "The study of music", said the Pope at the end of the concert, "has great value in the process of educating the person, in that it has positive effects on the development of individuals, favouring their harmonious human and spiritual growth".

  Praising the many years of experience of the Fiesole School of Music, he then observed how, "in the current social context, all educational efforts seem more arduous and problematic. Parents and teachers often speak of the difficulties they encounter in imparting the basic values of life and correct behaviour to new generations. This problematic situation affects both the school and the family, as well as the various agencies that operate in the field of education".

  "Young people, though they live in different environments, share a sensibility towards the great ideals of life but face many difficulties when they seek to put them into practice", said the Holy Father. "We cannot ignore their needs and expectations, or the obstacles and threats they encounter. They feel drawn to authentic values such as the centrality of the person, human dignity, peace and justice, tolerance and solidarity. They also seek, sometimes in confused and contradictory ways, spirituality and transcendence in order to find balance and harmony.

  "In this context", he added, "I am happy to observe that it is music that can open minds and hearts to the spiritual dimension and lead people to raise their eyes to heaven, to open themselves to absolute Goodness and Beauty which have their ultimate source in God. Likewise, the festive nature of song and music are a constant invitation for believers, and for all men and women of good will, to work so that humankind has a future rich in hope. Furthermore, ... the undertaking not 'to play alone', but to ensure that the various 'colours' of the orchestra - each maintaining its own characteristics - fuse together; the shared search for the best expression; all this is an excellent exercise, not only artistically and professionally, but also in overall human terms".

  The Pope concluded his remarks by reiterating his thanks to the president of the Italian Republic for the concert, and asking everyone to pray that, "beginning the sixth year of my pontificate, I may always carry out my ministry as the Lord would wish".
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VATICAN CITY, 30 APR 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received participants in the sixteenth plenary assembly of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, which is meeting between 30 April and 4 May to discuss the world economic crisis in the light of the ethical principles enshrined in the Church's social doctrine.

  "The worldwide financial breakdown has", said the Holy Father addressing the group in English, "demonstrated the fragility of the present economic system and the institutions linked to it".

  He continued: "Rather than a spiral of production and consumption in view of narrowly-defined human needs, economic life should properly be seen as an exercise of human responsibility, intrinsically oriented towards the promotion of the dignity of the person, the pursuit of the common good and the integral development - political, cultural and spiritual - of individuals, families and societies".

  "In my Encyclical 'Caritas in veritate', I observed that 'the current crisis obliges us to re-plan our journey, to set ourselves new rules and to discover new forms of commitment'".

  The Pope explained how "the Church, based on her faith in God the Creator, affirms the existence of a universal natural law. ... As part of the great heritage of human wisdom, the natural moral law, which the Church has appropriated, purified and developed in the light of Christian revelation, serves as a beacon guiding the efforts of individuals and communities to pursue good and to avoid evil, while directing their commitment to building an authentically just and humane society".

  "Among the indispensable principles shaping such an integral ethical approach to economic life must be the promotion of the common good, grounded in respect for the dignity of the human person and acknowledged as the primary goal of production and trade systems, political institutions and social welfare. In our day, concern for the common good has taken on a more markedly global dimension. It has also become increasingly evident that the common good embraces responsibility towards future generations; intergenerational solidarity must henceforth be recognised as a basic ethical criterion for judging any social system.

  "These realities point to the urgency of strengthening the governance procedures of the global economy, albeit with due respect for the principle of subsidiarity", added the Holy Father. "In the end, however, all economic decisions and policies must be directed towards 'charity in truth'".

  This, Benedict XVI concluded, is because "without truth, without trust and love for what is true, there is no social conscience and responsibility, and social action ends up serving private interests and the logic of power, resulting in social fragmentation".
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VATICAN CITY, 30 APR 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father today met with the five visitators of the Legion of Christ: Archbishop Charles Joseph Chaput, O.F.M. of Denver, U.S.A.; Archbishop Ricardo Ezzati Andrello S.D.B. of Concepcion, Chile; Archbishop Ricardo Blazquez Perez of Valladolid, Spain; Bishop Ricardo Watty Urquidi M.Sp.S. of Tepic, Mexico, and Bishop Giuseppe Versaldi of Alessandria, Italy.
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VATICAN CITY, 30 APR 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father has sent a telegram of condolence to Fr. Notker Wolf, abbot primate of the Benedictine Confederation, for the death today at the age of 98 of Cardinal Paul Augustin Mayer O.S.B., president emeritus of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

  The late cardinal, writes the Pope, "leaves the indelible memory of an industrious life spent with mildness and rectitude in coherent adherence to his vocation as a monk and pastor, full of zeal for the Gospel and always faithful to the Church. While recalling his knowledgeable commitment in the field of the liturgy and in that of universities and seminaries, and especially his much appreciated service to the Holy See, first in the preparatory commission for Vatican Council II then in various dicasteries of the Roman Curia, I raise fervent prayers that the Lord may welcome this worthy brother into eternal joy and peace".
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VATICAN CITY, 30 APR 2010 (VIS) - Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for May is: "That the shameful and monstrous commerce in human beings, which sadly involves millions of women and children, may be ended".

  His mission intention is: "That ordained ministers, religious women and men, and lay people involved in apostolic work may understand how to infuse missionary enthusiasm into the communities entrusted to their care".
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VATICAN CITY, 30 APR 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in audience Cardinal George Pell, archbishop of Sydney, Australia.
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VATICAN CITY, 30 APR 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

 - Appointed Archbishop Peter Smith of Cardiff, Wales, as metropolitan archbishop of Southwark (area 3,000, population 440,000, Catholics 395,182, priests 439, permanent deacons 79, religious 792), England.

 - Appointed Fr. Odilon Martinez Garcia of the clergy of the diocese of Toluca, Mexico, rector of the major diocesan seminary, as bishop of Atlacomulco (area 5,364, population 934,328, Catholics 917,794, priests 103, permanent deacons 1, religious 113), Mexico. The bishop-elect was born in Santa Ana, Mexico in 1949 and ordained a priest in 1974.

 - Appointed Fr. Rogatus Kimaryo C.S.Sp., apostolic administrator "sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis" of the diocese of Same, Tanzania, as bishop of the same diocese (area 10,000, population 609,000, Catholics 71,722, priests 52, religious 53). The bishop-elect was born in Mkuu, Tanzania in 1956 and ordained a priest in 1987.

 - Accepted the resignation from the apostolic vicariate of Kontagora, Nigeria, presented by Bishop Timothy Joseph Carroll S.M.A., in accordance with canon 401 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law.
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