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Thursday, June 14, 2012


Vatican City, 14 June 2012 (VIS) - "This morning 14 June the Holy Father Benedict XVI received in audience Jose Graziano da Silva, director general of the Rome-based United Nation's Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO). The director general subsequently went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. who was accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

"During the cordial discussions great appreciation was expressed for the commitment shown by the Holy See and the Catholic Church to combating hunger and poverty, especially in Africa, and to remedying the worrying situation of world food security", according to a Holy See Press Office communique released today.

"It was then noted that, despite the fact that there are sufficient resources to satisfy the food requirements of the entire planet, persistent economic, social and political obstacles hinder the possibility of meeting those requirements. Finally, the hope was expressed that the rural sector may once again take a leading role in development strategies, that sustainable models of agricultural production and food consumption be promoted, and that greater equity and efficiency be guaranteed in the administration of the food system".


Vatican City, 14 June 2012 (VIS) - "On the afternoon of Wednesday 13 June, Cardinal William Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and president of the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei', met with Bishop Bernard Fellay, superior general of the Society of St. Pius X who was accompanied by an assistant. Also present at the encounter were Archbishop Luis Ladaria S.J., secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and Msgr. Guido Pozzo, secretary of the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei'", according to a communique released today by the Holy See Press Office.

"The purpose of the meeting was to present the Holy See's evaluation of the text submitted in April by the Society of St. Pius X in response to the Doctrinal Preamble which the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith had presented to the Society on 14 September 2011. The subsequent discussion offered an opportunity the provide the appropriate explanations and clarifications. For his part, Bishop Fellay illustrated the current situation of the Society of St. Pius X and promised to make his response known within a reasonable lapse of time.

"Also during the meeting, a draft document was submitted proposing a Personal Prelature as the most appropriate instrument for any future canonical recognition of the Society.

"As was stated in the communique released on 16 May 2012, the situation of the other three bishops of the Society of St. Pius X will be dealt with separately and singularly.

"At the end of the meeting the hope was expressed that this additional opportunity for reflection would also contribute to reaching full communion between the Society of St. Pius X and the Apostolic See".


Vatican City, 14 June 2012 (VIS) - On Friday 8 June at the Government Palace in Vilnius the Holy See and the Republic of Lithuania signed an Agreement on the Recognition of Qualifications concerning Higher Education.

Archbishop Luigi Bonazzi, apostolic nuncio to Lithuania, signed on behalf or the Holy See, while Audronius Azubalis, minister for foreign affairs, signed for Lithuania.

The Agreement is in line with the 1997 Lisbon Convention, the various goals of which include that of favouring reciprocal recognition of periods of study and of qualifications in the field of higher education. Such recognition serves, among other things, to facilitate the movement of students and free circulation in the ambit of higher education within the region of Europe. Moreover, the Agreement is also in line with the aims of the Bologna Process, which has created the European Higher Education Area, currently involving forty-seven European countries, including the Holy See, with the support of a number of international organisations.

The current Agreement, apart from defining the principal terms it uses and its field of application, establishes rules, procedures and instruments to guarantee the recognition of higher education. It completes the juridical framework of relations between the Holy See and the Republic of Lithuania, which are already regulated by three Agreements signed on 5 May 2000. They concern cooperation in the field of education and culture, juridical aspects of relations between the Catholic Church and the State, and pastoral assistance to Catholics in the armed forces.

The current Agreement will enter into force on the day the two parties announce they have completed the respective internal legal procedures.


Vatican City, 14 June 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in audience:

- Bishop Henri Brincard of Le Puy-en-Velay, France.

- Eleven prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Colombia, on their "ad limina" visit:

- Archbishop Luis Madrid Merlano of Nueva Pamplona.

- Bishop Jaime Munoz Pedroza of Aracua.

- Bishop Julio Cesar Vidal Cortez of Cucuta.

- Bishop Jorge Enrique Lozano Zafra of Ocana.

- Bishop Omar Alberto Sanchez Cubillos O.P. of Tibu.

- Archbishop Luis Augusto Castro Quiroga I.M.C. of Tunja.

- Bishop Luis Felipe Sanchez Aponte of Chiquinquira.

- Bishop Carlos Prada Sanmiguel of Duitama-Sogamoso.

- Bishop Jose Vicente Hueras Vargas of Garagoa.

- Bishop Hector Javier Pizarro Acevedo O.A.R., apostolic vicar of Trinidad.


Vatican City, 14 June 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of Porec i Pula, Croatia, presented by Bishop Ivan Milovan, in accordance with canon 401 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law. He is succeeded by Coadjutor Bishop Drazen Kutlesa.

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