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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Catholic News Wed. July 15, 2009


VATICAN
According to the Vatican Information Service: Archbishop Silvano M. Tomasi C.S., who is the Holy See permanent observer to the United Nations and Specialised Institutions in Geneva, spoke to the High-Level Segment of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). The Archbishop said "the financial and economic crisis that greed and lack of ethical responsibility have brought about" has been further exacerbated by the influenza virus A-H1N1 "already recognised at pandemic proportion with a future impact that cannot be projected with much certainty, and by the global food security crisis that endangers the lives of millions of people, particularly the world's poorest, many of whom already suffer from acute and chronic malnutrition". "The Holy See delegation notes with deep concern predictions by the World Bank that during 2009 an additional 53 to 65 million people will be trapped in extreme poverty, and that the number of people chronically hungry will exceed one billion, 800 million of whom live in rural areas". He also noted "the temptation to reduce public services for a short-term benefit against the long-term human cost". He then said that "aid for development should be maintained and even increased as a critical factor in renewing the economy and leading us out of the crisis". He continued with the following observations: "Another key obstacle to achieving the internationally articulated goals in public health is to address the inequalities that exist both between countries and within countries, and between racial and ethnic groups. Tragically, women continue in many regions to receive poorer quality healthcare". He observed that "The Catholic Church sponsors 5,378 hospitals, 18,088 health clinics, 15,448 homes for the elderly and disabled, and other health care programmes throughout the world, but especially in the most isolated and marginalized areas". He pointed out that "faith-based organisations do not receive an equitable share of the resources designated to support global, national and local health initiatives". He then explained: "However, we must be guided by the best healthcare tradition that respects and promotes the right to life from conception until natural death for all regardless of race, disability, nationality, religion, sex and socio-economic status". The Holy See delegation believes "an ethical approach to development is needed which implies a new model of global development centred on the human person rather than profit, and inclusive of the needs and aspirations of the entire human family". (With files from VIS 090715 (480)
AMERICA
There is a Roman Catholic in the Administration of President Obama of the USA. Mark Linton, the director of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, is the White House’s head Catholic liaison. He prepared the president for his first meeting with Pope Benedict XVI, and helped the president reach out to American Catholics prior to the visit.
Linton is a former employee of Catholic Relief Services, and worked as a legislative assistant in Obama’s Senate office before heading up Catholic outreach for Obama’s presidential campaign in 2008.
(With files from http://www.ncregister.com/daily/the_catholic_behind_president_obama/)
EUROPE
Vatican Information Service reports that Pope Benedict XVI appointed Bishop Michele Castoro of Oria, Italy, as archbishop of Manfredonia - Vieste - San Giovanni Rotondo. The region has a population of 155,019, Catholics 153,000, priests 130, permanent deacons 3, and religious 245. He is also director general of the International Association of Prayer Groups of Padre Pio. The archbishop-elect was born in Altamura, Italy in 1952, he was ordained a priest in 1977 and consecrated a bishop in 2005.
The Pontiff also appointed Bishop Francisco Focardi O.F.M., auxiliary of the apostolic vicariate of El Beni, Bolivia, as apostolic vicar of Camiri . This area has a population 137,800, Catholics 115,000, priests 25, permanent deacons 1, and 70 religious. He succeeds Bishop Leonardo Mario Bernacchi O.F.M., whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same apostolic vicariate the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
(With files from VIS 090715 (150)
CARDINAL NEWMAN BEATIFIED
Pope Benedict XVI announced the beatification of Cardinal John Henry Newman. The Vatican approved the healing of Jack Sullivan, an American "bent double" by a severe spinal condition, as a miracle due to prayer to Cardinal Newman. "Cardinal Newman will be beatified during a solemn Mass within the next year and a second miracle will then be needed to recognise him as a saint. Newman converted to Catholic faith at the age of 44. He was born in 1801 and died in 1890.
ASIA
FACEBOOK EVANGELIZATION
The Union of Catholic Asians reports that nuns, priests & religious have begun to use the online social networking tool for evangelization. They use Facebook to leave saintly quotes, Scripture verses and greetings to family and friends. It is used to provide spiritual consolation to those in need. It was noted that some people found it difficult to communicate face-to-face but using the Internet enables them to overcome such inhibitions. The often detailed pages can help clergy to understand their Parishoners.
(With Files from: http://www.ucanews.com/2009/07/15/religious-priest-reach-out-through-facebook-msn/)
AFRICA
According to Catholic News Service, Catholics in Zimbabwe work to get citizen input into new constitution involve ordinary Zimbabweans in a constitutional consultation, although many people fear retribution."People are apprehensive about taking part in discussions about the constitution but, while there is fear, this process has to happen," said Father Frederick Chiromba, secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops' Conference.
Zimbabwe is to draft a constitution that will go before voters for approval in a referendum in 2010, clearing the way for new government elections.Noting that "we are doing our best to get the widest possible contribution," Father Edward Ndete, parliamentary liaison officer for the bishops' conference, said "the political environment is uneven" in rural Zimbabwe, with residents fearful of violent retaliation if they are seen to be critical of Mugabe.Brutal state-sponsored violence targeting the opposition after disputed March 2008 elections left more than 80 people dead and 200,000 displaced, according to human rights groups.
Father Ndete, who is coordinating the church's participation in the constitution-making process, said the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace in each diocese, "with the help of priests and parishioners," will gather people's ideas and views on the constitution.Where necessary, civic education will be provided "to make it possible for everyone to have their say in what they want in a constitution," he said.
Father Ndete, who is on the committee responsible for drafting the position paper of the country's churches, said, "We are calling for broad-based inclusion in the drafting of the constitution, openness and transparency, freedom of expression and receptiveness to different opinions."(With files from: http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0903238.htm)
DAILY SAINT QUOTE
One must see God in everyone.St. Catherine Laboure
TODAY'S SAINT
St. Bonaventure. He was born in 1221 and died in 1274. He was born in Tuscany, Italy. He initially joined the Franciscan Order and then he became a Cardinal. He is a Doctor of the Church.
TODAY'S GOSPEL
Matthew 5: 13 - 19
"You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trodden under foot by men.
"You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid.
Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
"Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfil them.
For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished.
Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
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