Wednesday, September 23, 2009





VIS - St. Anselm, one of the most outstanding figures of the Middle Ages, was the subject of the Holy Father's catechesis during his general audience, held this morning in the Paul VI Hall. St. Anselm of Canterbury, also known as Anselm of Aosta and Anselm of Bec, was born in the Italian town of Aosta in 1033. The eldest child of a noble family, his mother gave him a careful human and Christian education. During his youth he went through a period of moral dissipation and excess during which he abandoned his studies. He then travelled to France in search of new experiences and eventually reached the abbey of Bec, drawn there by the fame of its prior, Lanfranco of Pavia. There, at the age of 27, he embraced the monastic life. Three years later Lanfranco was appointed as abbot of Caen and Anselm became the prior of Bec. In his new role he "revealed gifts as a sophisticated teacher. He did not care for authoritarian methods and, likening young people to saplings which develop best if not closed in a greenhouse, he granted then a 'healthy' measure of freedom. He was very demanding with himself and others in monastic observance, but rather than imposing discipline he sought to make people follow it by persuasion", the Pope explained. When Lanfranco of Pavia was appointed as archbishop of Canterbury, England, he asked Anselm to help him in educating the monks and in dealings with the ecclesial community, which was facing difficult circumstances in the wake of the Norman invasions. On Lanfranco's death in 1093, Anselm succeeded him as archbishop immediately entering "into an energetic struggle for the freedom of the Church and courageously supporting the independence of spiritual from temporal power. He defended the Church from undue interference by the political authorities, especially King William Rufus and Henry I". His faithfulness to the Pope caused him to be exiled in 1103. Anselm died on 21 April 1109 having dedicated the last years of his life "to the moral formation of the clergy and intellectual research into theological questions", whence Christian tradition has bestowed upon him the title of "Doctor Magnificus", said the Holy Father. He went on: "The clarity and logical rigour of Anselm's ideas always sought 'to raise the mind to the contemplation of God'. He made it clear that anyone who intends to study theology must not rely only upon his own intelligence but must also cultivate a profound experience of faith". "In St. Anselm's view, then, a theologian's work is divided into threes stages: faith, God's gratuitous gift to be welcomed with humility; experience, which consists in incarnating the Word of God into daily life; and true knowledge, which is never the fruit of sterile reasoning but of contemplative intuition". "May the love for truth and the constant thirst for God which characterized St. Anselm's life be a stimulus for all Christians tirelessly to seek an ever more intimate union with Christ", said the Pope, and he concluded: "May the courageous zeal which distinguished his pastoral work and which sometimes brought misunderstandings, bitterness and even exile, be an encouragement for pastors, consecrated people and all the faithful to love the Church of Christ, ... never abandoning or betraying her".AG/ST. ANSELM/... VIS 090923 (560)

(VIS) - The Commission of Cardinals which oversees the activities of the Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR), chaired by Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B., has renewed the membership of the Board of Superintendence of the Institute. According to an English-language communique made public today, "after accepting the resignations presented by Angelo Caloia, president of the Board of Superintendence, and the other members of the board, the Commission of Cardinals expressed its deep gratitude to them for their generous service and, in accordance with the Statutes, appointed the following as members of the Board of Superintendence of the IOR": Carl A. Anderson, Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus, U.S.A.; Giovanni De Censi, president of the "Credito Valtellinese", Italy; Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, president of the "Santander Consumer Bank", Italy; Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz, Germany; Manuel Soto Serrano Spain. "In addition, in accordance with the statutory norms, the Commission of Cardinals, on the proposal of the Board of Superintendence of the IOR, appointed Ettore Gotti Tedeschi as the new president of the Board of Superintendence and Ronaldo Hermann Schmitz as vice president. "Finally, the Commission of Cardinals expressed its best wishes to the new Board of Superintendence, to Msgr. Piero Pioppo, prelate of the Institute, to Paolo Cipriani, director general, and to Massimo Tulli, vice director general, for their work in the service of the IOR".OP/IOR/GOTTI TEDESCHI VIS 090923 (250) AUDIENCES VATICAN CITY, 23 SEP 2009 VIS - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences four prelates from the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil, on their "ad limina" visit: - Archbishop Jose Antonio Aparecido Tosi Marques of Fortaleza, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishop Jose Luiz Ferreira Salles C.SS.R. - Bishop Jacinto Furtado de Brito Sobrinho of Crateus - Bishop Fernando Panico M.S.C. of Crato.AL/.../... VIS 090923 (70) OTHER

PONTIFICAL ACTS VATICAN CITY, 23 SEP 2009 VIS - The Holy Father has appointed the following persons as participants in the forthcoming Special Assembly for Africa of the Synod of Bishops, due to be held in the Vatican from 4 to 25 October on the theme: "The Church in Africa, at the Service of Reconciliation, Justice and Peace. 'You are the salt of the earth, ... you are the light of the world'": MEMBERS - Cardinal Angelo Sodano, dean of the College of Cardinals.- Cardinal Peter Erdo, archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, Hungary, and president of the "Consilium Conferentiarum Episcoporum Europae" (CCEE).- Cardinal Andre Vingt-Trois, archbishop of Paris, France.- Archbishop Robert Sarah, secretary of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples.- Archbishop Henri Teissier, emeritus of Algiers, Algeria.- Archbishop Jaime Pedro Goncalves of Beira, Mozambique.- Archbishop Orlando B. Quevedo O.M.I. of Cotabato, Philippines, secretary general of the Federation of Asian Bishops' Conferences (FABC).- Archbishop Luigi Bressan of Trento, Italy, president of the Italian Episcopal Conference's episcopal commission for the evangelisation of peoples and co-operation among churches.- Archbishop Jorge Ferreira da Costa Ortiga of Braga, Portugal, president of the Portuguese Episcopal Conference.- Archbishop Ludwig Schick of Bamberg, Germany, president of the "Weltkirche" commission of the "Deutsche Bischofskonferenz".- Archbishop Raymundo Damasceno Assis of Aparecida, Brazil, president of the Latin American Episcopal Conference CELAM.- Archbishop Jorge Enrique Jimenez Carvajal C.I.M. of Cartagena en Colombia, Colombia.- Archbishop Telesphore George Mpundu of Lusaka, Zambia.- Archbishop Cornelius Fontem Esua, of Bamenda, Cameroon.- Archbishop Wilton Daniel Gregory of Atlanta, U.S.A.- Archbishop-Bishop Henryk Hoser S.A.C. of Warszawa-Praga, Poland.- Archbishop Gabriel Charles Palmer-Buckle of Accra, Ghana.- Archbishop Odon Marie Arsene Razanakolona of Antananarivo, Madagascar.- Archbishop Michel Christian Cartateguy S.M.A. of Niamey, Niger.- Archbishop Edward Tamba Charles of Freetown and Bo, Sierra Leone.- Bishop John Anthony Rawsthorne of Hallam, England, president of the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales.- Bishop Maurice Piat C.S.Sp. of Port-Louis, Mauritius.- Bishop Edmond Djitangar of Sarh, Chad.- Bishop Peter William Ingham of Wollongong Australia, president of the Federation of Catholic Bishops' Conferences of Oceania (FCBCO).- Bishop Louis Nzala Kianza of Popokabaka, Democratic Republic of Congo.- Bishop Jean-Pierre Bassene of Kolda, Senegal, president of the John Paul II Foundation for the Sahel.- Bishop Giorgio Bertin O.F.M. of Djibouti, apostolic administrator "ad nutum Sanctae Sedis" of Mogadishu, Somalia.- Bishop Menghisteab Tesfamariam M.C.C.J., eparch of Asmara, Eritrea.- Bishop Benedito Beni dos Santos of Lorena, Brazil.- Bishop Maroun Elias Lahham of Tunis, Tunisia.- Msgr. Obiora Francis Ike, director of the Catholic Institute for Development, Justice and Peace (CIDJAP), Enugu, Nigeria.- Fr. Raymond Bernard Goudjo, secretary of the "Justitia et Pax" Commission of the Regional Episcopal Conference of West Africa (CERAO), Cotonou, Benin.- Fr. Juvenalis Baitu Rwelamira, director of the Centre for Social Justice and Ethics; professor and director of the Centre for the Social Teaching of the Church at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), Nairobi, Kenya.- Fr. Guillermo Luis Basanes S.D.B., general counsellor of the Salesian Society for the Africa-Madagascar region.- Fr. Emmanuel Typam C.M., secretary general of the Confederation of the Conferences of Superiors Major of Africa and Madagascar.- Fr. Zeferino Zeca Martins S.V.D., provincial for Angola of the Society of the Divine Word.
EXPERTS - Fr. Barthelemy Adoukonou, secretary general of the of the Regional Episcopal Conference of Franco-phone West Africa (CERAO), Ivory Coast.- Fr. Paul Bere S.J., professor of the Old Testament and biblical languages at the "Institut de Theologie de la Compagnie de Jesus, Universite Catholique dell'Afrique de l'Ouest", Abidjan, Ivory Coast and at the Hekima College Jesuit School of Theology, Nairobi, Kenya.- Fr. Benezet Bujo, professor of moral theology and social ethics at the "Universite de Fribourg" in Switzerland.- Fr. Belmiro Chissengueti C.S.Sp., secretary of the "Commissao Episcopal Justica e Paz", Luanda, Angola.- Fr. Gianfrancesco Colzani, professor of missionary theology at the missionary faculty of the Pontifical Urban University, Rome.- Fr. Michael F. Czerny S.J., director of the African Jesuit AIDS Network (AJAN), Nairobi, Kenya.- Filomena Jose Elias, member of the pastoral and liturgical council of the cathedral of Maputo, Mozambique.- Martin Esso Essis, emeritus professor of economics at the University of Abidjan, Ivory Coast.- Sr. Anne Beatrice Faye C.I.C., general counsellor of the Sisters of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, Senegal.- Deogratias Kasujja, counsellor of the centre run by the Work of Mary - Focolari Movement, in charge of spiritual formation of members, Uganda.- Mariam Paul Kessy, national co-ordinator of the Christian Professionals of Tanzania, (CPT), assistant secretary of the Justice and Peace commission of the Episcopal Conference of Tanzania.- Sr. Elisa Kidane S.M.C., general counsellor of the Combonian Missionaries, Eritrea.- Msgr. Matthew Hassan Kukah, vicar general of Kaduna, Nigeria.- Br. Jose Sebastiao Manuel O.P., director and co-founder of the "Mosaiko" cultural centre, Luanda, Angola.- Fr. Aimable Musoni S.D.B., professor of ecclesiology at the Pontifical Salesian University, Rome.- Sr. Immaculate Nakato S.M.R., general counsellor of the Society of Our Lady of Help, Uganda.- Yvonne Ndayikeza, national co-ordinator of movements of Catholic Action in Burundi and permanent executive secretary of the commission for the apostolate of the laity, Bujumbura, Burundi.- Fr. Joseph-Marie Ndi-Okalla, professor of theology at the faculty of theology of the Catholic University of Central Africa (UCAC) in Yaounde, Cameroon; president of the "Association Internationale de Missionologie Catholiques"(AIMC/IACM) for Africa- Fr. Paulinus Ikechukwu Odozor C.S.Sp., associate professor of Christian ethics and the theology of world church, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame - Indiana, U.S.A.- Sr. Teresa Okure S.H.C.J., academic dean of the faculty of theology at the Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA), Port Harcourt, Nigeria.- Florence Oloo, deputy vice chancellor for Academic Affairs of Strathmore University, Nairobi, Kenya.- Fr. Godfrey Igwebuike Onah, vice rector of the Pontifical Urban University, Rome.- Felicia Onyeabo, national president of the Catholic Women Organisation, Nigeria.- Fr. Angelo Paleri O.F.M. Conv., postulator general of the Order of Friars Minor Conventual, director for the diffusion of "Ecclesia in Africa" in mission lands, Zambia.- Fr. Samir Khalil Samir S.J., professor of the history of Arab culture and Islamic studies at St. Joseph's University, Beirut, Lebanon.- Maurice Sandouno, head of the DREAM programme for combating the transfer of the HIV virus from mother to child, Conakry, Guinea.- Fr. Kinkupu Leonard Santedi, secretary general of the Episcopal Conference of the Democratic Republic of Congo (CENCO), Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.- Sr. Liliane Sweko Mankiela S.N.D. de N., general counsellor of the Sisters of Our Lady of Namur, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.- Fr. Anselm Umoren M.S.P., superior general of the Missionary Society of St. Paul, Abuja, Nigeria. AUDITORS - Sr. Marie-Bernard Alima Mbalula, secretary of the Justice and Peace commission of the "Conference Episcopale Nationale du Congo" (CENCO) and of the "Association des Conferences Episcopales de l'Afrique Centrale" (ACEAC), Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.- Fr. Joaquin Alliende, international president of the Aid to the Church in Need Association.- Elard Alumando, country director of the DREAM programme, Malawi.- Marguerite Barankitse, foundress of the "Maison Shalom", Ruyigi, Burundi.- Paolo Beccegato, international area director of Caritas Italiana, Rome.-Emmanuel Habuka Bombande, executive director of the West Africa Network for Peacebulding (WANEP), Ghana.- Rose Busingye, foundress and president of Meeting Point International, Kampala, Uganda.- Munshya Chibilo, head of distance adoption projects of the Pope John XXIII Community Association, Zambia.- Thomas Diarra, instructor at the catechesis formation centre, Kati, Mali.- Assande Martial Eba, member of the "Fondation Internationale Notre Dame de la Paix", Yamoussoukro, Ivory Coast.- Kpakile Felemou, director of the DREAM centre, Conakry, Guinea.- Axelle Fischer, secretary general of the Justice and Peace Commission for Franco-phone Belgium, Brussels, Belgium.- Inmaculada Myriam Garcia Abrisqueta, president of the "Manos Unidas" association, Spain.- Br. Armand Garin, regional head of the Little Brothers of Jesus for North Africa, (Algeria and Morocco), Annaba, Algeria.- Elena Giacchi, gynaecologist at the centre for study and research into the natural regulation of fertility at the Sacred Heart Catholic University, Rome, and president of WOOMB-Italia, (national co-ordination of the Billings ovulation method - Italy).- Sr. Bernadette Guissou S.I.C.O., superior general of the Sisters of the Immaculate Conception, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.- Christophe Habiyambere, president of Fidesco, Kigali, Rwanda.- Sr. Felicia Harry, N.S.A. (O.L.A.), superior general of the Missionary Sisters of Our Lady of the Apostles, Ghana.- Jules Adachédé Hounkponou, secretary general of the international co-ordination of Christian Youth Workers (CIGiOC)- Marie-Madeleine Kalala Ngoy Mongi, honorary minister for human rights, Democratic Republic of Congo.- Fr. Speratus Kamanzi A.J., superior general of the Congregation of the Apostles of Jesus, Nairobi, Kenya.- Josaphat Laurean Kanywanyi associate professor of law at the University of Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania.- Sr. Mary Anne Felicitas Katiti L.M.S.I., mother provincial of the Congregation of Little Servants of Mary Immaculate, Zambia.- Edem Kodjo, secretary general emeritus of the Organisation of the African Union (OUA), prime minister emeritus, professor of patrology at the "Institut St. Paul" of Lome, Togo.- Gustave Lunjiwire-Ntako-Nnanvume, international secretary of the "Mouvement d'Action Catholique Xaveri" (MAC Xaveri), Democratic Republic of Congo.- Ngon-Ka-Ningueyo François Madjadoum, director of "Secours Catholique et Développement" (SE.CA.DEV), Chad.- Sr. Jacqueline Manyi Atabong, assistant to the superior general of the Sisters of St. Teresa of the Child Jesus in the diocese of Buea; co-ordinator for Africa of the International Catholic Commission for Prison Pastoral Care (ICCPPC), Douala, Cameroon.- Sr. Bernadette Masekamela C.S., superior general of the Sisters of Calvary, Botswana.- Fr. Richard Menatsi, acting director, co-ordinator of the Justice and Peace Desk / Inter-regional Meeting of Bishops of Southern Africa (IMBISA), Harare, Zimbabwe.- Sr. Cecilia Mkhonto S.S.B., superior general of the Sisters of St. Bridget, South Africa.- Ermelindo Rosario Monteiro, secretary general of the episcopal Justice and Peace Commission, Maputo, Mozambique.- Maged Moussa Yanny, executive director of the Upper Egypt Association for Education and Development, Egypt.- Aloyse Raymond Ndiaye, president of the "Comite National des Chevaliers de l'Ordre de Malte au Senegal", Dakar, Senegal.- Laurien Ntezimana, theology graduate of the diocese of Butare, Rwanda.- Fr. Sean O'Leary M.Afr., director of the Denis Hurley Peace Institute, South Africa.- Sr. Pauline Odia Bukasa F.M.S., superior general of the Ba-Maria Sisters, Buta Uele, Democratic Republic of Congo.- Augustine Okafor, expert in governmental administration, Nigeria.- Orochi Samuel Orach, assistant to the executive secretary of the Uganda Catholic Medical Bureau, Kampala, Uganda.- Barbara Pandolfi, president of the secular institute of the Missionary Sisters of the Kingship of Christ, Italy.- Alberto Piatti, secretary general of the AVSI foundation, Milan, Italy.- Raymond Ranjeva, former vice president of the International Court of Justice in the Netherlands, and a member of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.- Genevieve Amalia Mathilde Sanze, head of the Work of Mary - Focolari Movement, Abidjan, Ivory Coast.- Victor M. Scheffers, secretary general of "Justitia et Pax Netherlands", The Hague, Netherlands.- Br. André Sene O.H., head of health pastoral care in the diocese of Thies, Senegal.- Sr. Bedour Antoun Irini Shenouda N.D.A., mother provincial of the "Missionaires de Notre Dame des Apotres", Cairo, Egypt.- Pierre Titi Nwel, social mediator and ex co-ordinator of the National Service for Justice and Peace of the National Episcopal Conference of Cameroon (CENC), Yaounde, Cameroon.- Elisabeth Twissa, vice president of the World Organisation of Catholic Female Organisations (UMOFC), Tanzania.- Sr. Maria Ifechukwu Udorah D.D.L., superior general of the Daughters of Divine Love, Enugu, Nigeria.- Sr. Geneviève Uwamariya of the Institute of Santa Maria of Namur, Rwanda.NA/.../... VIS 090923 (1980)



CNA reports that the 40 Days for Life autumn campaign will begin on Wednesday in 212 cities, starting efforts like prayer and fasting for an end to abortion, peaceful vigils outside abortion facilities, and grassroots community organizing.
The official effort is scheduled to last until November 1. David Bereit, national director of 40 Days for Life, said that “tens of thousands of faithful people” will participate in 45 American states, five Canadian provinces and Denmark.
The organization reports it has helped mobilize more than 215,000 people in its two years of work. Their efforts have reportedly saved 1,561 lives from abortion and have been endorsed by dozens of pro-life and pro-family groups. Religious leaders, including more than 20 Catholic bishops, have also promoted the campaign.
The fall campaign will be the most widespread and longest coordinated pro-life mobilization in history, 40 Days for Life claims. It also alleges a “misinformation blitz” by pro-abortion partisans is trying to smear the campaign
Bereit said Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in the country, was generating “inflammatory rhetoric.” The organization’s Houston affiliate has called on its supporters to “defend women’s health” from the “40 days of harassment.” A St. Louis affiliate has hung a huge “defend the truth” banner from the side of its building.
“Ironically, the truth is something Planned Parenthood tries to hide," said Bereit. "The truth is that the child in the womb is a human being, and that abortion takes the life of the child and can leave a devastating impact on the mother."
40 Days for Life reported that 90 percent of the prayer vigil locations are at Planned Parenthood facilities.
The organization has also been part of the Stop the Abortion Mandate coalition, which is working to ensure abortion is explicitly excluded from any proposed health care reform bill.
"We have never before seen the intensity of passion and extensive involvement in pro-life efforts that we are seeing all across North America right now," said Bereit. "We don't know what blessings this fall's 40 Days for Life will hold, but we can't wait to see what God has in store!”
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CISA reports that a seminary for mature vocations in Kampala can now scarcely accommodate the many candidates who want to study for the priesthood, the rector says.Fr Joseph Sserunjogi told the international Catholic pastoral charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), based in Germany, that the situation has now reached a point where even the office rooms within the seminary and other rooms in a nearby monastery are being converted into dormitories.Congestion poses the threat of disease, Fr. Sserunjogi said. Yet at the same time he finds it very hard to turn away vocations simply because of the shortage of space. For the new academic year, beginning this month, there have been no fewer than 48 applicants, of whom the seminary has been able to accept just 28.This is a "very regrettable" situation, the rector said, since "priests are needed everywhere, and yet for lack of space we have to turn away those who feel themselves called".Nonetheless, the seminary is trying everything possible to turn away as few potential candidates as possible. In future, though, it will be essential to extend the seminary.The mature vocations seminary was opened in 1976, since the diocese had a building available and the then Bishop of Kampala had recognized the fact that there are many men who have already learned a trade or profession yet subsequently feel themselves called to the priesthood.It all began with just a handful of seminarians. Of the 17 candidates in the "first wave" nine are priests and two of them have become bishops. Since the seminary first opened, no fewer than 180 priests have issued from it.Presently, there are 155 men studying for the priesthood and the numbers are growing steadily. All have had other trades or professions before entering the seminary; many were teachers, others were white collar workers, policeman or vets.The oldest candidate, who is now a priest, was 56 years old when he entered the seminary. Most, however, are aged between 24 and 31 and come from one of the 15 dioceses in Uganda or from neighbouring countries like Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Sudan, the rector told ACN.According to Fr. Sserunjogi, the advantage of these late vocations lies in the fact that the men are "already more mature" and have reached their decision independently and with conscious deliberation. On the other hand, they tend sometimes to take longer than the young seminarians to get used to life in the seminary.According to Vatican statistics, every fifth seminarian worldwide now comes from Africa. At the same time, however, the number of Catholics is also rising so that in many regions there are still far too few priests. (SOURCE:



UCAN reports that the new coadjutor bishop of Islamabad-Rawalpindi says he wants to foster harmony in his diocese to help his troubled country.

Archbishop Adolfo Tito Yllana lays his hands on Bishop Rufin Anthony duringthe episcopal ordination ceremony
"We are all Pakistani citizens and will continue to work for the unity of our country," Bishop Rufin Anthony said during his Sept. 21 ordination in Rawalpindi, near the capital Islamabad. "I will carry on the pastoral work of bringing people closer to God and closer to each other."
The ordination coincided with the 27th United Nations' International Day of Peace, an annual effort to highlight efforts to end conflict and promote peace.
Archbishop Adolfo Tito Yllana, apostolic nuncio to Pakistan, presided at the ordination in St. Joseph's Cathedral, joined by seven other prelates. More than 1,500 people attended the event including 70 priests, nuns, lay leaders and diplomats.
The new bishop was serving as vicar general of Faisalabad diocese when Pope Benedict XVI named him coadjutor for Pakistan's most northern diocese on Aug. 4. The papal decree read out at the ordination ceremony in Latin, English and Urdu, the national language, said the appointment was made to ensure pastoral work was done in a "better and effective way" and came at the request of Bishop Anthony Lobo of Islamabad-Rawalpindi.
Bishop Lobo, 72, has been suffering respiratory problems.
As coadjutor, Bishop Anthony will assist Bishop Lobo and, when the latter's term ends, automatically succeed him. Canon law requires bishops to request retirement when they reach 75.
Archbishop Lawrence J. Saldanha of Lahore, president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Pakistan, expressed joy at the latest addition to the conference. "There are few prelates to cater to the spiritual needs of the Christian community," he told UCA News.
Christians, including 1.3 million Catholics, account for less than 2 percent of Pakistan's 160 million people. The Catholic Church comprises two archdioceses, four dioceses and one apostolic prefecture, led by two archbishops, six bishops and one prefect.
Archbishop Saldanha also pointed out that Islamabad-Rawalpindi diocese covers a big region with distinctive problems. "Taliban commanders have a strong presence in the northwest and have established rural bases which restrict local government activities," he said.
Only a few Catholics are now present in the tribal areas and most have fled due to these extremists, the archbishop added.
Militants demanding the imposition of Islamic rule, grabbed power in several tribal districts along the Afghanistan border. Hundreds of people have died and thousands of civilians have been displaced in the past two years as Pakistani forces clashed with the Taliban and allied groups.
Islamabad-Rawalpindi diocese covers the whole of North West Frontier Province, the part of the disputed Kashmir region under Pakistani control and federally administered tribal areas. The diocese was established in 1947. According to the 2006 Catholic Church directory, 31 priests were serving 174,208 local Catholics.
Father John William, a senior priest of the diocese, says it is strategically placed because of Islamabad being the seat of the government. "Therefore it is convenient for the Church to present its issues/ concerns to the higher authorities," he told UCA News.
Mehboob Sada, director of the ecumenical Christian Study Center in Rawalpindi, sees the ordination as a development of the local Church. "Christians have long been demanding a Punjabi leader," he remarked.
Earlier, on Feb. 14, the Pope appointed Father Sebastian Shah, a Punjabi, as auxiliary Lahore bishop. Before that Bishop Andrew Francis of Multan was Pakistan's only ethnic Punjabi bishop.
About 80 percent of the Christians in Pakistan live in Punjab province, yet most bishops trace their descent back to Goa or Mangalore in neighboring India.



Cath News reports that the Church of England's Bishop of Reading, the Right Rev Stephen Cottrell, said the church must shed its middle class "Marks & Spencer" image and become more like "Aldi", welcoming to the masses.
"Even today I meet people who think you have to be highly educated or suited and booted to be a person who goes to church. That's so frustrating," he was cited saying by The Times.
"How did it come to this, that we have become known as just the Marks & Spencer option when in our heart of hearts we know that Jesus would just as likely be in the queue at Asda (a British retail chain) or Aldi?
"Jesus got us started with church simply. Like this: sitting us down in groups on the grass and telling simple stories - not simplistic, but certainly not complicated. All his first disciples were down to earth people who wanted to know what life was all about.

"I wish I could take everyone round our churches in my area. Places of warmth and honesty. Sanctuaries of deep conversation, of tears and laughter. Not a hobby but a way of life."
Churches in Britain are preparing for a "Back to Church Sunday" next weekend, with parishioners having been encouraged to extend personal invitations to their friends.
The Times report added that churches also advertised for the first time on radio with 40 second rap poem that counsels: "You might have left for so many reasons, but am I wrong to sense that now's the season, to stop, turn around, walk back? Don't look to make no airs and graces. Faked up smiles and masked up faces. No need to make no innovation. Please accept this as your invitation."



Cath News reports that an Independent senator Nick Xenophon joined the Opposition and the Greens in calls for Immigration Minister Chris Evans to intervene and grant protection to Grace Gichuhi, 22, and Teresia Ndikaru Muturi, 21, who face possible genital mutilation at home.
The Age reported a "groundswell of concerned readers" were appalled and eager to help.
The pair, who arrived here on World Youth Day pilgrim visas, were rejected as refugees by the immigration department, an independent tribunal and then the minister despite a bill before parliament aimed at protecting such women, the report added.
"If the laws are changed, these women have a clear case for asylum," Senator Xenophon was cited saying by The Age. "I urge the minister to exercise discretion to give these two women asylum."
Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said the women were "prime candidates" for the proposed "complementary protection" laws, aimed at building on existing refugee criteria.
Currently, refugees' fear of persecution has to be based on "race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion", but people facing genital mutilation for other reasons can be sent home.
Edmund Rice Centre Director Phil Glendenning said the women's cases could not wait for the formal introduction of the complementary protection measures.
"The research work of the Edmund Rice Centre - documented in the Deported To Danger Reports I and II and the film A Well Founded Fear - showed clearly how the previous Government's policies led to hundreds of people being returned to danger in the countries they had fled from, and how many were killed upon return," Mr Glendenning said.
"We hold similar fears for Grace and Teresia. If they are returned they face genital mutilation, or death if they refuse it. Compassion for people in the circumstances Grace and Teresia find themselves in is not a form of weakness, it is our greatest civilising strength." (SOURCE:

St. Pio of Pietrelcina
Feast: September 23
Feast Day:
September 23
May 25, 1887, Pietrelcina, Italy
September 23, 1968, San Giovanni Rotondo
June 16, 2002, Rome, Italy by Pope John Paul II
Major Shrine:
San Giovanni Rotondo

Like the Apostle Paul, Padre Pio of Pietrelcina placed at the centre of his life and apostolic work the Cross of his Lord as his strength, his wisdom and his glory. Inflamed by love of Jesus Christ, he became like him in the sacrifice of himself for the salvation of the world. In his following and imitation of the crucified Christ he was so generous and perfect that he could have said: "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me" (Gal 2:20). And the treasures of grace which God had granted him so lavishly he unceasingly passed on through his ministry, serving the men and women who came to him in ever greater numbers, and bringing to birth an immense host of spiritual sons and daughters.This worthy follower of St Francis of Assisi was born on 25 May 1887 at Pietrelcina in the Archdiocese of Benevento, the son of Grazio Forgione and Maria Giuseppa De Nunzio. He was baptized the next day and given the name Francesco. At the age 12 he received the sacrament of Confirmation and made his First Holy Communion.
On 6 January 1903, at the age of 16, he entered the novitiate of the Capuchin Friars at Morcone, where on 22 January he took the Franciscan habit and the name Brother Pio. At the end of his novitiate year he took simple vows, and on 27 January 1907 made his solemn profession.
After he was ordained a priest on 10 August 1910 at Benevento, he stayed at home with his family until 1916 for health reasons. In September of that year he was sent to the friary of San Giovanni Rotondo and remained there until his death.
Filled with love of God and love of neighbour, Padre Pio lived to the full the vocation to work for the redemption of man, in accordance with the special mission which marked his entire life and which he exercised through the spiritual direction of the faithful, the sacramental reconciliation of penitents and the celebration of the Eucharist. The pinnacle of his apostolic activity was the celebration of Holy Mass. The faithful who took part witnessed the summit and fullness of his spirituality.
On the level of social charity, he committed himself to relieving the pain and suffering of many families, chiefly through the foundation of the Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza (House for the Relief of Suffering), opened on 5 May 1956.
For the servant of God, faith was life: he willed everything and did everything in the light of faith. He was assiduously devoted to prayer. He passed the day and a large part of the night in conversation with God. He would say: "in books we seek God, in prayer we find him. Prayer is the key which opens God's heart". Faith led him always to accept God's mysterious will.
He was always immersed in supernatural realities. Not only was he himself a man of hope and total trust in God, but by word and example he communicated these virtues to all who approached him.
The love of God filled him, and satisfied his every desire; charity was the chief inspiration of his day: to love God and to help others to love him. His special concern was to grow in charity and to lead others to do so.
He demonstrated to the full his love of neighbour by welcoming, for more than 50 years, countless people who had recourse to his ministry and his confessional, his counsel and his consolation. He was almost besieged: they sought him in church, in the sacristy, in the friary. And he gave himself to everyone, rekindling faith, dispensing grace, bringing light. But especially in the poor, the suffering and the sick he saw the image of Christ, and he gave himself particularly to them.
He exercised to an exemplary degree the virtue of prudence, acting and counseling in the light of God.
His concern was the glory of God and the good of souls. He treated everyone with justice, frankness and great respect.
The virtue of fortitude shone in him. He understood very early in life that his would be the way of the Cross, and he accepted it at once with courage and out of love. For many years, he experienced spiritual sufferings. For years he endured the pains of his wounds with admirable serenity. He accepted in silence the many interventions of his superiors, and in the face of calumnies he always remained silent.
He habitually practised mortification in order to gain the virtue of temperance, in keeping with the Franciscan style. He was temperate in his attitude and in his way of life.
Conscious of the commitments which he had undertaken when he entered the consecrated life, he observed with generosity the vows he had professed. He was obedient in all things to the commands of his superiors, even when they were burdensome. His obedience was supernatural in intention, universal in its scope and complete in its execution. He lived the spirit of poverty with total detachment from self, from earthly goods, from his own comfort and from honours. He always had a great love for the virtue of chastity. His behaviour was modest in all situations and with all people.
He sincerely thought of himself as useless, unworthy of God's gifts, full of weakness and infirmity, and at the same time blessed with divine favours. Amid so much admiration around him, he would say: "I only want to be a poor friar who prays".
From his youth, his health was not very robust, and especially in the last years of his life it declined rapidly. Sister Death took him well prepared and serene on 23 September 1968 at the age of 81. An extraordinary gathering of people attended his funeral. (SOURCE;


Matthew 16: 24 - 27
Then Jesus told his disciples, "If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.
For whoever would save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
For what will it profit a man, if he gains the whole world and forfeits his life? Or what shall a man give in return for his life?
For the Son of man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay every man for what he has done.


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