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Tuesday, July 1, 2014


Vatican City, 1 July 2014 (VIS) – “The news of the killing of the three young abducted Israelis is terrible and dramatic”, declared the director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, S.J., late yesterday afternoon. “The assassination of innocent people is always an execrable and unacceptable crime, and a very serious obstacle on the path towards the peace for which we must tirelessly continue to strive and pray. Violence begets violence, and feeds the vicious circle of hatred. Pope France participates in the unspeakable suffering of the families struck by this homicidal violence and the pain of all persons afflicted by the consequences of hatred, and prays that God might inspire all with thoughts of compassion and peace”.


Vatican City, 1 July 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father will make an apostolic trip to the Republic of Korea from 13 to 18 August, on the occasion of the 6th Asian Youth Day. The following statistics relate to the Catholic Church in Korea, dating from 31 December 2013, and are provided by the Central Office of Church Statistics.

The Republic of Korea has an area of 99,268 square kilometres and a population of 50,220,000, of whom 5,393,000 are Catholics, corresponding to 10.7% of the population. There are 16 ecclesiastical circumscriptions, 1,673 parishes and 843 pastoral centres. The apostolate is carried out by 35 bishops, 4,261 priests, 516 male religious and 9,016 female religious, 123 lay missionaries and 14,195 catechists. There are 395 minor and 1,489 major seminarians.

There are 328 educational centres of all levels directed or owned by the Catholic Church throughout the Republic of Korea, in which there are 221,020 students, as well as 49 special centres. There are also 200 health and welfare centres belonging to or directed by the Church: 40 hospitals, 4 clinics, 9 leper colonies, 513 rest homes for the elderly and disabled, 277 orphanages and nurseries, and 83 centres for family counselling and the protection of life.


Vatican City, 1 July 2014 (VIS) – The following prelates died in recent weeks:

- Bishop Joseph Befe Ateba of Kribi, Cameroon, on 4 June at the age of 52.

- Bishop Alejandro Antonio Buccolini, S.D.B, emeritus of Rio Gallegos, Argentina, on 6 June at the age of 84.

- Bishop Juan Maria Leonardi Villasmil of Punto Fijo, Venezuela, on 7 June at the age of 67.

-Cardinal Bernard Agre, archbishop emeritus of Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire, on 9 June at the age of 88.

- Bishop Vital Joao Geraldo Wilderink, O. Carm., emeritus of Itaguai, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on 11 June at the age of 82.

- Archbishop Moacyr Jose Vitti, C.S.S. of Curitiba, Parana, Brazil, on 26 June at the age of 73.

- Bishop Bernard Ferdinand Popp, emeritus of San Antonio, Texas, U.S.A., on 27 June at the age of 96.

- Archbishop Petero Mataca, emeritus of Suva, Fiji, on 30 June at the age of 81.


Vatican City, 1 July 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father has appointed the following as consultors of the Pontifical Council for Culture:

Fr. Paul Bere, S.J., professor of sacred scripture at the Theological Institute of the Society of Jesus in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire; Fr. Pablo d'Ors, C.M.F., director of the theatre writing workshop of the University of Madrid, Spain; Fr. Kevin Fitzgerald, S.J., lecturer in bioethics at Georgetown University, U.S.A.; Fr. Fernando Ortega, dean of the faculty of theology at the Pontifical Catholic University of Buenos Aires, Argentina; Professor Edward Alam, U.S.A., lecturer in philosophy and theology at the Notre Dame University in Louaize, Lebanon; Professor Ralf van Buhren, Federal Republic of Germany, lecturer in Christian art and religious architecture at the faculty of social communication of the Pontifical University of the Sacred Heart, Rome; Professor Glen Chatelier, director of the office for international affairs at the Assumption University, Bangkok, Thailand; Edio Costantini, director of the “Luigi Gedda” national study centre of the Centro Sportivo Italiano - CSI, Italy; Professor Ivano Dionigi, rector of the University of Bologna and president of the Pontificia Accademia Latinitatis, Italy; Joachim Hake, director of the Katholische Akademie of Berlin, Federal Republic of Germany; Choe Hyondok, Korea, coordinator of the Catedra de Estudios de Corea y del Este Asiatico at the University of Costa Rica; Marguerite Lena, lecturer in philosophy at the College des Bernardins in Paris, France; and Piotr Pasterczyk, lecturer in cultural history at the Catholic University of Lublin, Poland.
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