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Thursday, March 20, 2014


Vatican City, 20 March 2014 (VIS) – This morning in the Apostolic Palace the Holy Father Francis received in audience Filip Vujanović, president of the Republic of Montenegro, who subsequently went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

During the cordial discussions, satisfaction was expressed with regard to the good bilateral relations, further reinforced by the Basic Agreement which promotes collaboration between the Church and the State for the common good of society. Mention was then made of various themes of common interest, focusing on the principal regional questions and Montenegro’s progress towards integration in European and Euro-Atlantic institutions.


Vatican City, 20 March 2014 (VIS) – Today Pope Francis again emphasised the primary importance of work and the need for creativity and solidarity to face the economic crisis, receiving in audience the employees and managers of the Italian “Acciaierie di Terni” steelworks, accompanied by the bishop of the diocese and a group of faithful, to commemorate the 130th anniversary of the company's foundation.

“It is necessary to reaffirm that employment is necessary for society, for families and for individuals”, said the Pope. “Its primary value is the good of the human person, as it allows the individual to be fully realised as such, with his or her attitudes and intellectual, creative and manual capacities. Therefore, it follows that work has not only the economic objective of profit, but above all a purpose that regards man and his dignity. And if there is no work, this dignity is wounded! Indeed, the unemployed and underemployed risk being relegated to the margins of society, becoming victims of social exclusion”.

“What can we say, when faced with the very serious problem of unemployment that affects various European countries?”, he asked. “It is the consequence of an economic system that is no longer able to create work, because it has placed at its centre the idol of money. Therefore, the various political, social and economic actors are called upon to promote a different approach, based on justice and solidarity, to ensure the possibility of dignified work for all. Work is an asset for all, and must be available to all. Phases of serious difficulties and unemployment must be faced with the tools of creativity and solidarity. The creativity of courageous businesspeople and craftspeople, who look to the future with trust and hope. And solidarity between all the elements of society, who all give something up, adopting a more sober lifestyle, to help those in need”.

“This great challenge requires the involvement of the Christian community as a whole”, concluded the Pope. “The first challenge is to revive the roots of faith and of our adhesion to Jesus Christ. This is the inspiring principle in the choices of a Christian: faith. Faith moves mountains! Christian faith is able to enrich society through the concrete element of brotherhood it embodies. … Never cease to hope for a better future. Do not let yourselves be trapped in the vortex of pessimism! If everyone does his part, if we all put the human person and his dignity at the centre, and if we consolidate an attitude of solidarity and fraternal sharing, inspired by the Gospel, we can emerge from the swamp of this difficult and burdensome period of economic turmoil”.


Vatican City, 20 March 2014 (VIS) – This morning in the Holy See Press Office a press conference was held to present the agreement signed by NTT Data and the Vatican Apostolic Library for the plan to digitally archive 82,000 manuscripts. The speakers were: Archbishop Jean-Louis Brugues, O.P., archivist and librarian of the Holy Roman Church, Msgr. Cesare Pasini, prefect of the Vatican Apostolic Library, and Toshio Iwamoto and Patrizio Mapelli, presidents and CEOs of the NTT Data Corporation and the NTT Data EMEA respectively. NTT Data is a technological services provider known throughout the world for its expertise in the field of IT and communications structures.

“With this project, the Library consolidates one of its many relationships with institutions in various regions of the world, in the light of its overall policy, its aims and its objectives”, explained Archbishop Brugues. “It does so through is manuscripts, which are a sign of the universality of culture: the manuscripts which will be digitally archived range from pre-Columbian America to the Chinese and Japanese Far East, encompassing all the cultures and languages that have inspired European culture. The humanistic mission that characterises the Library opens it to all that is human, including mankind's various 'cultural peripheries'; and with this humanistic spirit it seeks to conserve and make available the immense treasure of humanity that has been entrusted to it. For this reason, the Library will digitise it and make it available on the web”.

The project consists of an initial four-year phase during which three thousand manuscripts will be digitised, which may be extended into a second phase to include the 82,000 volumes – more than 40 million pages – of manuscripts preserved in the Library and dating from between the second and twentieth centuries.

“All manuscipts digitised through this operation will be released on the Vatican Apostolic Library's website as high-definition data. As a result, numerous researchers in the fields of academia and in various fields of knowledge will be able to interpret the valuable manuscripts, to which access had long been restricted, in their original form”, declared the president of the NTT Data Corporation.


Vatican City, 20 March 2014 (VIS) – A letter was published today, written in Latin and dated 19 March, by which the Holy Father appoints Cardinal Ennio Antonelli, president emeritus of the Pontifical Council for the Family, as his special envoy to the celebration of the seventieth anniversary of the destruction and reconstruction of the Italian abbey of Montecassino, which will take place there tomorrow, 21 March.


Vatican City, 19 March 2014 (VIS) – “St. Joseph the educator” was the theme of the catechesis of today's general audience on the Solemnity of St. Joseph, Mary's spouse and patron of the Universal Church. The Holy Father recalled the great mission of the saint who was able to “protect the Holy Virgin and the Son Jesus”. “We look upon Joseph as the model of the educator, who protects and accompanies Jesus in his journey of growth in wisdom, age and grace, as the Gospel tells us. He was not Jesus' father – Jesus' father was God – but he was a father to Jesus in order to raise him. And how did he enable him to grow? In wisdom, age and grace. … He raised him, ensuring that he lacked nothing necessary for his healthy development”.

He continued, “St. Joseph's mission is certainly unique and unrepeatable, as Jesus is absolutely unique. However, in protecting Jesus, in teaching him how to grow in age, wisdom and grace, he is a model for every educator, and in particular for every father”. Pope Francis gave his best wishes to all the fathers present and encouraged them always to be close to their children, “letting them grow, but always being nearby. They need you, your presence, your closeness, your love. Be, for them, like St. Joseph: protectors of their growth in age, wisdom and grace. Guardians of their path, and educators: walk alongside them. And with this closeness, you will be true educators”.

Before concluding, the Pope mentioned all those who have lost their fathers, and asked those present to pray the “Our Father” for all fathers, living and departed.


Vatican City, 20 March 2014 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father received in audience Peter Maurer, president of the International Committee of the Red Cross, and entourage.


Vatican City, 20 March 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father has:

- appointed Bishop Jose Trinidad Zapata Ortiz of San Andres Tuxtla, Mexico, as bishop of Papantla (area 12,000, population 2,138, Catholics 1,729,000, priests 89, permanent deacons 1, religious 128), Mexico.

- appointed Bishop Jose Valmor Cesar Teixeira, S.D.B. of Bom Jesus da Lapa, Brazil, as bishop of Sao Jose dos Campos (area 56,300, population 397,000, Catholics 316,000, priests 34, religious 56), Brazil.

On Wednesday, 19 March, the Holy Father:

- accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Alindao, Central African Republic, presented by Bishop Peter Marzinkowski, C.S.Sp., upon reaching the age limit. He is succeeded by Bishop Cyr-Nestor Yapaupa, co-adjutor of the same diocese.

- appointed Bishop Henrique Soares da Costa of Aracaju, Brazil, as bishop of Palmares (area 3,797, population 456,000, Catholics 301,000, priests 32, permanent deacons 4, religious 67), Brazil. He succeeds Bishop Genival Saraiva de Franca, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese upon reaching the age limit was accepted by the Holy Father.

- appointed Fr. Francis Serrao, S.J., provincial superior of the Society of Jesus in India, as bishop of Shimoga (area 21,405, population 8,040,000, Catholics 21,241, priests 72, religious 293), India. The bishop-elect was born in Moodbidri, India in 1959, entered the Society of Jesus in 1979, was ordained a priest in 1992 and gave his solemn vows in 1999. He has served in a number of pastoral roles, including priest in Mundgod, diocese of Karwar, director of the Regional Theologate, Bangalore, priest of the St. Joseph Church, Anekal, Mangalore, superior of the Bejapur Jesuit community, and rector of St. Aloysius College, Mangalore.
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