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Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Vatican City, 3 December 2013 (VIS) – The Council of Cardinals instituted by Pope Francis to assist him in the governance of the universal Church and to draw up a plan for the revision of the Apostolic Constitution Pastor bonus on the Roman Curia, as announced by the Holy Father's chirograph dated 28 September, began its second round of meetings this morning, to continue until 5 December. The first round took place from 3 to 5 October.

The Council is composed of eight cardinals from the five continents: Cardinals Giuseppe Bertello, president of the Governorate of Vatican City State, Francisco Javier Errazuriz Ossa, archbishop emeritus of Santiago de Chile, Chile; Oswald Gracias, archbishop of Bombay, India; Reinhard Marx, archbishop of Munich, Germany; Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, archbishop of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo; Sean Patrick O'Malley, archbishop of Boston, U.S.A.; George Pell, archbishop of Sydney, Australia, and Oscar Andres Rodriguez Maradiaga, archbishop of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, in the function of co-ordinator. The secretary is Bishop Marcello Semeraro of Albano, Italy.

In a briefing held today, the director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J., communicated that the cardinals will meet in the Santa Marta guesthouse at from 9 a.m. to 12.30 p.m., and will hold the afternoon sessions from 4 to 7 p.m. The morning began with the holy Mass concelebrated with Pope Francis in the chapel.

This time, the cardinals have commenced work directly in the Santa Marta guesthouse, rather than meeting beforehand on the Third Loggia, as they did in October”, said Fr. Lombardi. “The Pope was present at the meeting and will probably also attend this afternoon. However, tomorrow he will not attend the morning session as he will hold the general audience in St. Peter's Square. During the intervening months between one session and another, the cardinals have continued their work, both personally and in contact with each other; they have also gathered opinions and suggestions on the situation of the Church based on the events in which they have participated; for example, Cardinal Gracias has attended numerous meetings in Asia, while Cardinal Marx has held his own in Europe”.

This morning work began immediately on the examination of the Roman Curia and in particular on the dicastery of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments; or rather, they entered fully into what, as has already been stated, will be an in-depth task, not limited to retouches or minor improvements. The revision of Pastor bonus is substantial, to the extent that it may be considered as a new constitution for the Curia”.

The director of the Holy See Press Office specified that in this round the cardinals will not discuss matters regarding the economic and administrative sectors which, in his opinion, will be considered in the next meeting in February, shortly before the consistory for the creation of new cardinals, which will be followed by the meeting of the Synod council.

He also referred to the Cardinals' working method, in which tasks are distributed so as to permit specific themes to be studied, but “everything will be brought before the Council and there is common responsibility in relation to all themes”.

Finally, Fr. Lombardi communicated that the Council has invited the new secretary of State, Archbishop Pietro Parolin, to greet him and in order to make first contacts with him. No further invitations are expected during these days.


Vatican City, 3 December 2013 (VIS) – The Vatican Apostolic Library (BAV) and the Bodleian Libraries of the University of Oxford have joined forces to digitalise and make available online some of the most important and unique Bibles in the world, as well as biblical texts from their collections. From today, 3 December, the digitalised texts can be accessed at http://bav.bodleian.ox.ac.uk.

The initiative is the first step of an important four-year collaborative project for the publication of digital content on the internet. A committee of academics and experts from around the world has selected for digitalisation a part of the collection of manuscripts in Hebrew and Greek, as well as incunabula from the Bodleian and Vatican Apostolic Libraries. The selection process has taken into account both the requirements of scholars and practical needs. Restorers from both libraries have collaborated with conservators to ascertain not only the value of the contents, but also the conditions of preservation of the works.

Although for some years now the two institutions have digitally reproduced part of their collections, this project provides them both with the opportunity to increase the scale and numerical capacity of the volumes digitalised, while taking care not to expose the works, very delicate on account of their age and conservational condition, to risk of damage.

The website, just opened, provides high-resolution scale images permitting detailed study and scientific analysis. The site includes also hosts videos and essays by scholars and supporters of the digitalisation project, including Archbishop Jean-Louis Brugues, archivist and librarian of the Holy Roman Church and Archbishop of Canterbury and primate of the Anglican Church, Justin Welby. A blog with articles on conservation, digitalisation techniques and methods used during the project completes the site, which may be viewed in both English and Italian.


Vatican City, 3 December 2013 (VIS) - “Santiago Calatrava: the metamorphosis of space” is the title of the exhibition dedicated to the Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, which opens tomorrow afternoon in the Braccio Carlo Magno, in the colonnade of St. Peter's Square.

The exhibition, which is open until 20 February 2014, has been organised by the Vatican Museums and the Pontifical Council for Culture, and gathers together around 140 works representing Calatrava's complex and varied artistic oeuvre. It consists primarily of a group of architectural models, accompanied by their preparatory studies, as well as watercolour paintings, the result of an entirely different creative impulse. The display also includes a rich collection of sculptures, both monumental and of smaller dimensions, in materials such as bronze, marble, alabaster and wood.

The juxtaposition of works representing such different artistic codes follows various criteria for guiding the observer towards various levels in the interpretation of architectural volumes and the vision of space and forms, typical of Calatrava's work.

Thus, the large architectural model of the Greek-Orthodox church of St. Nicholas, planned for Ground Zero, is displayed alongside evocative watercolour drawings in which the gaze of the artist ranges from the study of the mosaics and the dome of Santa Sophia in Istanbul, to the face of Christ, the ideal model for the centrally planned church. The twisted veils of the sports centre for the University “Tor Vergata” in Rome are accompanied by three paintings of crouching figures, as a study of forces in equilibrium.

The model of the cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York also forms part of the exhibition. Its magnificence contrasts with the model of the Los Angeles Chapel, in the form of a cabin, dedicated to the Franciscan missionary Father Junipero Serra. The cabin, the first church of the community of Franciscans in Baja California, is the model for a chapel immersed in space, in water and in the air, rejecting the physical border between sacred and collective space.

The catalogue, by Edizioni Musei Vaticani, is presented by the director of the Museums, Antonio Paolucci, and includes contributions by Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture, Antonella Greco, professor of history of architecture in the Faculty of Architecture of the “La Sapienza” University of Rome, and Micol Forti, director of the Contemporary Art Collection of the Vatican Museums.


Vatican City, 3 December 2013 (VIS) - Today, the Holy Father:

- appointed Fr. Joselito Carreno Quinonez, M.X.Y., as apostolic vicar of Inirida (area 86,000, population 30,000, Catholics 8,000, priests 13, religious 12), Colombia. The bishop-elect was born in Cepita, Colombia in 1966 and was ordained a priest in 1996. He holds a degree in theology from Hekima College, Nairobi, Kenya, and has served in a number of pastoral roles, including missionary in Kenya, in the diocese of Ngong; missionary in Ethiopia, in the apostolic prefettura (now apostolic vicariate) of Gambella; regional co-ordinator of the Institute for Foreign Missions of Yarumal in Kenya; rector of the seminary of the Institute for Foreign Missions of Yarumal in Kenya; and vicar general of the missionary institute. He succeeds Bishop Antonio Bayter Abud, M.X.Y., whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same apostolic vicariate was accepted by the Holy Father, upon having reached the age limit.

- appointed Rev. Carlos Alberto Correa Martinez of the clergy of Sonson-Rionegro as apostolic vicar of Guapi (area 10,000, population 133,500, Catholics 129,500, priests 15, religious 25), Colombia. The bishop-elect was born in Medellin, Colombia in 1968 and was ordained a priest in 1993. He holds a licentiate in missiology from the Pontifical Urbaniana University, Rome. He has served in a number of pastoral and administrative roles, including priest in the parish of “Nuestra Senora de los Angeles”, Portoviejo, Ecuador; vicar in the parish of “Nuestra Senora de la Candelaria”, Sonson-Rionegro, Colombia; missionary in Riohacha and Monteria; co-ordinator and formator, and subsequently director of the San Paolo priestly association; episcopal delegate for missionary work; professor and spiritual director of the Seminario Misionero del Espiritu Santo.

- appointed Msgr. Jorge Vazquez and Fr. Carlos Alberto Novoa de Agustini O.F.M. Cap.as auxiliary bishops of Lomas de Zamora (area 1,352, population 2,469,000, Catholics 1,979,000, priests 115, permanent deacons 75, religious 402), Argentina.

Bishop-elect Vazquez was born in Lomas de Zamora, Argentina in 1950 and was ordained a priest in 1983. He holds a degree in theology and a licentiate in dogmatic theology from the Pontifical Catholic University in Argentina. He has served in various pastoral roles, including priest in the parishes of Cristo Redentor in Villa Jardin, Inmaculada Concepcion in Monte Grande and of the Cathedral N.S. de la Paz, in Lomas de Zamora; rector of the diocesan seminary Santa Cruz; member of the presbyteral council and the College of Consultors; chancellor and diocesan representative of Caritas and Social Pastoral, assessor for the Circulo Catolico de Obreros, and since 2009, vicar general of Lomas de Zamora.

Bishop-elect Novoa de Agustini O.F.M. Cap. was born in Lomas de Zamora, Argentina in 1966 and was ordained a priest in 1996. He holds a licentiate in spiritual theology from the Pontifical University "Antonianum", Rome, and has served in the following roles within the Capuchin Order: deputy master of postulants, deputy master of temporary professed; promoter of vocational pastoral; provincal secretary; provincial definitor, guardian of the convent of “Nuevo Paris”, Montevideo, and master of temporary professed; provincial vicar, definitor general for Latin America and Spain. He has held a number of other pastoral roles, including parish vicar of Santa Maria de los Angeles, Buenos Aires; priest and rector of the shrine of N.S. del Rosario de Nueva Pompeya, Buenos Aires; parish vicar of San Francisco de Asis, Montevideo; administrator of the parish and sanctuary of St. Anthony in Montevideo, and since 2012, parish vicar of Sagrado Corazon de Jesus, Cordoba, Argentina.

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