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Monday, June 13, 2011


VATICAN CITY, 11 JUN 2011 (VIS) - This afternoon the Holy Father received two thousand Gypsies from various European countries. They are participating in a pilgrimage to Rome, representing the 12 million Gypsies scattered across the continent.

  At the beginning of his address the Pope recalled Servant of God Paul VI's words to Gypsies in 1965: "'You are in the heart of the Church!' I repeat that today with affection: You are in the Church!".

  Noting that this year marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of the Gypsy Blessed Ceferino Gimenez Malla and the 75th anniversary of his martyrdom, Benedict XVI told the group that Blessed Malla "invites you to follow his example and he shows you the way: dedication to prayer, particularly the rosary - which he always carried in his pocket - love for the Eucharist and other Sacraments, keeping the Commandments, honesty, charity, and generosity towards others, especially the poor. This will make you strong to face the risks that sects and other groups place upon your communion with the Church".

  "Your history", he continued, "is complex and, in some periods, sorrowful. ... You have been left without a home and have come to consider the entire continent as your home. ... Unfortunately, down the ages you have known the bitter taste of rejection and, at times, persecution as happened during World War II: thousands of men, women, and children were brutally murdered in the concentration camps. It was ... an episode still largely unrecognised".

  The Pope stated that "the European conscience must not forget such pain. Your people must never again be the object of abuse, rejection, or disdain! For your part, always seek justice, legality, and reconciliation and try not to be the cause of others' suffering".

  "I invite you", he exclaimed, "to write together a new page of history for your people and for Europe. The search for worthy living conditions, jobs, and also education for your children are the basis upon which to build that integration from which you and society as a whole will benefit. Offer your active and sincere cooperation so that your families may be worthily established in the social fabric of Europe".

  Benedict XVI concluded by telling his audience that they are also "called to participate actively in the Church's mission of evangelisation, promoting pastoral outreach in communities". In this context he emphasised how "priests, deacons, and consecrated persons who pertain to your ethnic groups are a gift from God and a positive sign of the dialogue between the local Churches and your peoples, which must be supported and developed. Be confident and listen to these brothers and sisters. With them offer a coherent and joyful message of God's love for the Gypsy people and all peoples. The Church desires that all men and women recognise that they are children of the same Father and members of the same human family".
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VATICAN CITY, 11 JUN 2011 (VIS) - Made public today was a letter, written in Latin and dated 8 May, in which the Holy Father names Cardinal Justin Francis Rigali, archbishop of Philadelphia, U.S.A., as his special envoy to the bicentennial celebrations of the birth of St. John Neumann, C.Ss.R., which will take place in Prachatitz, Czech Republic, on 18 June.

  The names of the members of the delegation accompanying Cardinal Rigali were also made public: Fr. Zdenek Mares, dean of the Chapter of the Cathedral of St. Nicholas, and Fr. Vlastimil Krocil, member of the Chapter of the Cathedral of St. Nicholas and administrator in Veseli nad Luznici.
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VATICAN CITY, 11 JUN 2011 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Cardinal Marc Ouellet P.S.S., prefect of the Congregation for Bishops,

 - Archbishop Joseph Augustine Charanakunnel of Raipur, India, on his "ad limina" visit.

 - Mario Juan Bosco Cayota Zappettini, ambassador of Uruguay, accompanied by his wife, on his farewell visit.
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VATICAN CITY, 11 JUN 2011 (VIS) - His Beatitude Lucian Muresan, major archbishop of Fagaras and Alba Julia of the Romanians, Romania, with the consent of the Synod of the Romanian Greek-Catholic Church and after having informed the Apostolic See, has, in accordance with canon 85 para. 2 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, transferred Bishop Vasile Bizau of the Major Archbishopric Curia, to the eparchy of Maramures of the Romanians (Catholics 152,383, priests 143, religious 3), Romania.
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VATICAN CITY, 12 JUN 2011 (VIS) - At 9.30 a.m. today, the Feast of Pentecost, the Holy Father presided at Mass in the Vatican Basilica.

  In his homily the Holy Father said that "the Spirit which created all things, and the Holy Spirit which Christ caused to descend from the Father upon the community of disciples, are one and the same. Creation and redemption are mutually intertwined and constitute a single mystery of love and salvation".

  "The Holy Spirit", he went on, "is first and foremost the Spirit of creation; and so Pentecost is the feast of creation. For we Christians the world is the result of an act of love by God, Who made all things. ... Thus God is not the Absolute Other, indescribable and obscure, God reveals Himself, He has a face, God is reason, God is will, God is love, God is beauty".

  Benedict XVI explained that "the Holy Spirit is the One Who enables us to recognise ourselves in Christ the Lord, and causes us to pronounce the Church's profession of faith: 'Jesus is Lord'". In this context, he also pointed out that "by reciting the Creed we enter into the mystery of the Pentecost. ... The Creed brings us together from all over the world. Through the Holy Spirit, it ensures we understand one another though speaking different languages. Through faith, hope and love, the new community of the Church of God is formed".

  "The Holy Spirit animates the Church", the Pope said. "The Church is not the result of human will, of reflection, of man's abilities or his capacity for organisation. If this were the case she would have passed out of existence a long time ago, just as all human things pass. She is, rather, the Body of Christ animated by the Holy Spirit".

  "The Church was catholic from the first moment of her existence. Her universality is not the result of the subsequent inclusion of different communities: from the first instant the Holy Spirit created her as the Church of all peoples. She embraces the entire world, crossing frontiers of race, class and nation, breaking down barriers and uniting mankind in the proclamation of the One and Triune God. From her beginnings, the Church was one, catholic and apostolic. This is her true nature and as such she must be recognised. She is holy, not thanks to any capacity of her members, but because God Himself, with His Spirit, continuously creates, purifies and sanctifies her".

  Benedict XVI concluded by quoting from today's Gospel: "'the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord'. ... Today, at Pentecost, this phrase also includes us, because in the faith we can see Him, in the faith He comes among us and shows us His hands and side, and we too can rejoice. Thus we pray: Lord show Yourself. Give us the gift of Your presence that we might have the greatest gift: Your joy!"
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VATICAN CITY, 12 JUN 2011 (VIS) - At midday today, following this morning's celebration of the Eucharist in the Vatican Basilica for the Feast of Pentecost, the Pope appeared at the window of his study to pray the Regina Coeli with faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square.

  "The Paschal Mystery - the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Christ, and His Ascension to heaven - reaches fulfilment in the powerful effusion of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles, who were gathered with Mary ... and the other disciples. This was the 'Baptism' of the Church", he said.

  "The voice of God makes the human language of the Apostles divine, and they become capable of 'polyphonically' proclaiming the one Divine Word. The breath of the Holy Spirit fills the universe, it generates faith, it draws people to truth, it prepares the way for unity", the Pope explained. He then went on to quote some words written by Blessed Antonio Rosmini: "On the day of Pentecost God promulgated ... His law of charity, writing it by means of the Holy Spirit, not upon tablets of stone, but in the hearts of the Apostles and, through the Apostles, communicating it to the whole Church".

  The Holy Spirit, "Who is the Lord and the Giver of Life, ... has the power to sanctify, to remove divisions, to dissolve the confusion caused by sin. ... The Spirit distributes divine goodness and supports living beings that they may act in accordance with that goodness. As intelligible Light, it gives meaning to prayer, invigorates the mission of evangelisation, sets aflame the hearts of those who hear the happy message, and inspires Christian art and liturgical music. ... It creates faith within us at the moment of our Baptism and allows us to live as conscious and responsible children of God, in keeping with the image of the Only-begotten Son".

  After praying the Regina Coeli, the Pope recalled that the priest and martyr Alois Andritzki, killed by the Nazis in 1943, will be beatified tomorrow in the German city of Dresden. He was a "heroic witness of the faith who joins the ranks of those who gave their lives in Christ's name in the concentration camps. On this day of Pentecost I would like to entrust the cause of peace in the world to their intercession. May the Holy Spirit inspire heroic intentions of peace and support the commitment to see them through to fulfilment, that dialogue may triumph over arms and respect for man's dignity may prevail over self-interest. May the Spirit, the bond of communion, cure hearts warped by selfishness and help the human family to rediscover and protect its fundamental unity".

  Benedict XVI also mentioned the fact that 14 June marks World Blood Donor Day, which involves "millions of people who silently contribute to helping their brothers and sisters in difficulties. I send a cordial greeting to all blood donors and invite young people to follow their example".

  Finally, the Pope greeted a group of people currently meeting in Pistoia, Italy, for the Catholic Information Forum for the Protection of Creation, organised by the 'Greenaccord' association on the theme: Man's shared space in the creation. "I encourage all journalists working to safeguard the environment", he said.
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VATICAN CITY, 13 JUN 2011 (VIS) - This morning in the Bologna Hall of the Vatican Apostolic Palace, Benedict XVI presided at a meeting of heads of dicasteries of the Roman Curia.
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VATICAN CITY, 13 JUN 2011 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

 - Appointed Fr. Thomas Aquino Manyo Maeda, secretary general of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Japan, as bishop of Hiroshima (area 31,818, population 7,601,000, Catholics 20,334, priests 73, religious 213), Japan. The bishop-elect was born in Tsuwasaki, Japan in 1949 and ordained a priest in 1975. He succeeds Bishop Joseph Atsumi Misue, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.

 - Appointed Fr. Andrew Peter Wypych of the clergy of the archdiocese of Chicago, U.S.A., pastor of the parish of St. Francis Borgia, and Fr. Alberto Rojas, also of the clergy of the archdiocese of Chicago, pastor of the parish of the Good Shepherd, as auxiliaries of the same archdiocese (area 3,654, population 6,111,000, Catholics 2,383,000, priests 1,692, permanent deacons 643, religious 3,128). Bishop-elect Wypych was born in Kazimierza, Poland in 1954 and ordained a priest in 1979. Bishop-elect Rojas was born in El Zapote de la Labor, Mexico in 1965 and ordained a priest in 1997.

  On Saturday 11 June it was made public that the Holy Father accepted:

 - The resignation from the office of auxiliary of the patriarchal eparchy of Beirut of the Armenians, Lebanon, presented by Bishop Vartan Achkarian, C.A.M., in accordance with canon 201 para. 1 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.

 - The resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Kayes, Mali, presented by Bishop Joseph Dao, upon having reached the age limit.
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