Wednesday, September 30, 2009





(VIS) - During his general audience, celebrated this morning in St. Peter's Square, the Pope reminisced about his recent apostolic trip to the Czech Republic, which took place from 26 to 28 September. The Holy Father gave thanks to God for his journey which "was a true pilgrimage and, at the same time, a mission into the heart of Europe" on the theme: "The love of Christ is our strength". This strength, he explained, "inspires and animates true revolutions, peaceful and liberating, and upholds us in moments of crisis, enabling us to arise once more when the freedom, so arduously regained, risks losing itself and the truth it contains". On the first stage of his journey, in the church of Our Lady Victorious where the famous statue of the Infant Jesus of Prague is venerated, Benedict XVI gave assurances that he had prayed "for all children, for parents, for the future of the family. The true 'victory' we ask of Mary today is the victory of love and life in families and in society", he said. The Pope then recalled how, in his address to the political and civil authorities and members of the diplomatic corps, he had mentioned "the indissoluble bond that must always exist between freedom and truth. We must not be afraid of truth, because it is a friend of man and his freedom. Indeed, only by sincerely seeking truth, goodness and beauty can we truly offer a future to the young people of today and to future generations". "Leaders in the fields of politics and education must know how to draw from the light of that truth which is the reflection of the eternal wisdom of the Creator. And they are called to bear witness in person to this with their own lives". The Holy Father went on: "For the communities of Central and Eastern Europe this a difficult time: to the consequences of the long winter of atheist totalitarianism are being added the harmful effects of a certain form of Western secularisation and consumerism. Hence, I encouraged everyone to draw fresh energy form the risen Lord in order to become evangelical leavening in society and commit themselves, as is already happening, to charitable work and, even more so, to education". During the two Eucharistic celebrations of his Czech trip - first in Brno then in Stara Boleslav, site of the martyrdom of St. Wenceslas - the Pope "presented a message of hope founded upon faith in Christ". Talking then about the ecumenical meeting he had attended, the Holy Father highlighted how "the struggle to proceed towards ever fuller and more visible unity among believers in Christ makes our shared commitment to rediscovering the Christian roots of Europe stronger and more effective". During the encounter with the academic community "I underlined the role of universities, ... as a vital institution for society, a guarantee of freedom and development", said Pope Benedict. "Twenty years after the so-called 'Velvet Revolution'", he concluded, "I again presented the idea of integral human formation, based on a unity of knowledge rooted in truth, in order to counter a new dictatorship, that of relativism linked to the dominance of technology. Humanistic and scientific culture cannot be separated, they are two sides of the same coin. The Czech lands themselves remind us of this, being home to great writers like Kafka and to abbot Mendel, pioneer of modern genetics".AG/VISIT CZECH REPUBLIC/... VIS 090930 (590)

BENEDICT XVI'S PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR OCTOBER VATICAN CITY, 30 SEP 2009 (VIS) - Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for October is: "That Sunday may be lived as the day on which Christians gather to celebrate the risen Lord, participating in the Eucharist". His mission intention is: "That the entire People of God, to whom Christ entrusted the mandate to go and preach the Gospel to every creature, may eagerly assume their own missionary responsibility and consider it the highest service they can offer humanity".BXVI-PRAYER INTENTIONS/OCTOBER/... VIS 090930 (90)

INTERDEPENDENCE AMONG PEOPLES AND IMPORTANCE OF UN VATICAN CITY, 30 SEP 2009 (VIS) - Archbishop Celestino Migliore, permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, yesterday addressed the 64th UN General Assembly which, he noted, is focusing on "effective responses to global crises: strengthening multilateralism and dialogue among civilizations for international peace, security and development". Speaking English the papal nuncio highlighted how the various G8 and G20 meetings made clear "the necessity to give legitimacy to the political commitments assumed, confronting them with the thought and needs of the entire international community, so that the devised solutions would be able to reflect the points of view and the expectations of the populations of all continents". "The more the interdependence of peoples increases", the archbishop went on, "the more the necessity of the United Nations becomes evident", as an organisation "capable of responding to the obstacles and increasing complexity of relations between peoples and nations. ... The United Nations will advance toward the formation of a true family of nations to the extent that it assumes the truth of the inevitable interdependence among peoples, and to the extent that it takes up the truth about the human person, in accordance with its Charter". Referring then to "the nature of development and the role of donor and recipient countries", Archbishop Migliore noted that "true development necessarily involves an integral respect for human life which cannot be disconnected from the development of peoples. Unfortunately in some parts of the world today, development aid seems to be tied rather to the recipient countries' willingness to adopt programmes which discourage demographic growth of certain populations by methods and practices disrespectful of human dignity and rights. ...Yet such a practice is by its nature not one of reciprocity but imposition, and to predicate the decision to give development aid on the acceptance of such policies constitutes an abuse of power". The Holy See permanent observer also touched on "the equity of the international commercial system and world financial architecture", expressing the hope that "the creation of permanent sources of jobs, stability of work, the just retribution of local production and the availability of public and private credit for production and work, especially in the poorest countries" will prevent "new and more serious global crises". Turning then to the principle of the "responsibility to protect", as formulated at the 2005 World Summit, Archbishop Migliore said: "The recognition of the ... dignity of every man and woman, ensures that governments always undertake with every means at their disposal to prevent and combat crimes of genocide, ethnic cleansing, and any other crimes against humanity. Thus, recognizing their interconnected responsibility to protect, States will realise the importance of accepting the collaboration of the international community as a means of fulfilling their role of providing responsible sovereignty". The permanent observer specifically mentioned the "suffering, frustration and hardships" of the Honduran people "from the already too long political upheaval", and he called on all parties "to make every effort to find a prompt solution in view of the good of the people of Honduras". Then, with reference to the recently concluded summit on climate change, he concluded by affirming that "the protection of the environment continues to be at the forefront of multilateral activities, because it involves in cohesive form the destiny of all nations and the future of every individual man and woman".DELSS/MULTILATERALISM/MIGLIORE VIS 090930 (570)

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS VATICAN CITY, 30 SEP 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed: - Jean-Marie Le Mene, president of the "Foundation Jerome Lejeune" of Paris, France, as an ordinary member of the Pontifical Academy for Life. - As members of the presidential committee of the Pontifical Council for the Family: Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi, archbishop of Milan, Italy; Cardinal Keith Michael Patrick O'Brien, archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Scotland; Cardinal Sean Patrick O'Malley O.F.M. Cap., archbishop of Boston, U.S.A.; Cardinal Odilo Pedro Scherer, archbishop of Sao Paulo, Brazil; His Beatitude Fouad Twal, patriarch of Jerusalem of the Latins; Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan, Philippines, and Archbishop Francisco Gil Hellin of Burgos, Spain. - As members of the Pontifical Council for the Family: Attila and Julia Gergel, Hungary; Jaime Armando Miguel and Ligia Maria Moniz da Fonseca, India; David E. and Mary‑Joan Osatohanmwen Osunde, Nigeria; John S. and Claire Grabowski, U.S.A.; Umberto Diaz Victoria and Isabel Botia Aponte, Colombia; Leon Botolo Magoza and Marie Valentine Kisanga Sosawe, Democratic Republic of Congo; Naser and Amira (Simaan) Shakkour, Israel; Tomas Melendo Granados and Lourdes Millan Alba, Spain, and Jose Luis and Veronica Villasenor, Mexico. - As consultors of the Pontifical Council for the Family: Msgr. Livio Melina, president of the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family, Rome; Msgr. Augusto Sarmiento, professor at the faculty of theology of the University of Navarra, Spain; Msgr. Brice de Malherbe, professor at the "Ecole Cathedrale" and at the faculty of Notre‑Dame of Paris, France; Fr. Edoardo Scognamiglio, O.F.M. Conv., minister provincial of the Friars Minor Conventual in Naples, Italy; Pierpaolo Donati, professor at the department of sociology of the University of Bologna, Italy; Francesco Belletti, member of the national consultancy for family pastoral care of the Italian Episcopal Conference's office for the pastoral care of the family; Stefano Zamagni, professor at the faculty of economics of the University of Bologna, Italy; Rafael Navarro‑Valls, professor of law at the "Universidad Complutense" of Madrid, Spain; Nicolas Jouve de la Barreda, professor of genetics at the "Universidad de Alcala", Spain; Salvatore Martinez, president of the "Mons. Francesco Di Vincenzo" Institute for human promotion, Italy; Jose de Jesus Hernandez Ramos, counsellor of the Doha International Institute For Family Studies and Development, Mexico; Frank and Julie Laboda, U.S.A.; Germina Namatovu Ssemogerere, consultor of the "Capacity Building Programme for Ministry of Local Government Civil Service Personnel", Uganda; Eugenia Scabini, dean of the faculty of psychology of the Sacred Heart Catholic University of Milan, Italy; Teresa Stanton Collet, professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law of Minneapolis, U.S.A.; Susanne Tiemann, professor of social law at the "Katholische Fachhochschule Nordrhein‑Westfalen" of Cologne, Germany, and Michaela Heereman Von Zuydtwyck, volunteer of the "Elternverein Nordrhein‑Westfalen" Association, Germany.NA/.../... VIS 090930 (460)


CNA reports that former Speaker of the U.S. House Newt Gingrich, a recent convert to Catholicism, is producing a forthcoming documentary about Pope John Paul II’s first return visit to Poland in June 1979. Titled “Nine Days that Change the World,” the film explores the impact of the visit on the collapse of Communism.
The film’s website says that the Polish trade union movement “languished” before June of 1979. Following the visit of Pope John Paul II and the 1980 Gdansk shipyard strike, the Solidarity movement became the first officially recognized free trade union in the Communist bloc and had over 10 million members.
Nine Days that Changed the World seeks to examine what happened during John Paul II’s nine-day visit, why millions of Poles came to see the Pope and what made John Paul II’s visit such a “liberating moment.”
The story of Pope John Paul II’s role in the overthrow of Communism, in Gingrich’s view, will show that our true humanity is found “only in a relationship with God.”
“I hope people will see the film and think about their relationship to Christ and the importance of courage,” Gingrich added, speaking to Deal Hudson of
Gingrich says he hopes the film, co-produced by his wife Callista, will be an “evangelical vehicle” to counter the “secularist moment” in U.S. culture.
In the former politician’s view, the United States is “heir to a Scottish and English Enlightenment that did not reject God, unlike the atheism of the French Revolution.”
"In the face of the secularist threat," Gingrich mused, "along with that of militant Islam, endurance is what really matters."
Telling Hudson of his conversion, Gingrich said his wife did not push her faith on him but witnessed to it through her example.
“It was clear it meant a great deal to her,” he said, telling how he went to Mass with her at Washington’s basilica and wherever they traveled.
Gingrich said his wife “created an environment where I could gradually think and evolve on the issue of faith.” Reading and conversations with friends advanced his understanding until the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to the United States. Callista’s choir was to sing vespers for the Pope, allowing Gingrich to see him up close.
He said it was clear Pope Benedict was “having the time of his life.”
“[T]he joy in his eyes belied his reputation as an austere German,” Gingrich told Hudson. “As he walked past me, I knew I wanted to become a Catholic."
"I knew that I belonged here." "No --as a Catholic, I should put it: Here is where I belong."
Nine Days that Changed the World is scheduled to be released in Fall of 2009. The website for the film is


CNA reports that Archbishop Braulio Rodriguez of Toledo, Spain said Monday that the new law on Sexual and Reproductive Health and the Voluntary Interruption of Pregnancy approved by the Spanish government last Saturday “has little to do with sexual health” and treats abortion “as if it were a right.”
The Archbishop of Toledo faulted the legislation for using the term “reproduction” and added that “abortion is repulsive to reason.”
The archbishop made his comments to reporters immediately following a Mass to open the new academic year at several local theology institutes and the archdiocesan seminary.
Lawmakers in Europe often fall into “a sort of contradiction,” he continued, since “on the one hand they want to broaden the individual rights of the person but on the other they work less for other rights such as the right to be born, the right to life and to right to not go hungry and to employment.”
The law will now go before Spain’s Parliament, where it probably be passed, the archbishop said. “But that does not mean it is right. Future generations will judge us for laws like this,” he warned. (SOURCE:



UCAN reports that a major Christian gathering in eastern Nepal ended in tragedy when the convention center collapsed.
At least 23 Christians died and 100 were injured when a bamboo structure housing participants collapsed in Dharan on Sept 29.
Around 1,800 Christians of the El Shaddai group had gathered for a 10-day convention that began on Sept 28. The gathering was organized by the Zion El Shaddai Church.
"A three-story makeshift bamboo structure where women and children had been housed in collapsed at 11:30 p.m.," Salesian priest Father Augusty Pulickal told UCA News.
He said that participants at the convention included people from Bhutan, and Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Siliguri in India.
Father Pulickal, who is based in Dharan and who is the parish priest of St. John Bosco Parish there, is helping with relief work with a team of youths from his church.
UCA News was unable to contact members of the El Shaddai group in Dharan.
Christians at this time of the year organize conventions to take advantage of the 15-day holiday for Dashain, a Hindu festival.
According to Protestant pastor Laxmi Prasad Neupaney, members of Protestant Churches usually gather at this time of the year to "renew their faith."
"Christians belonging to the El Shaddai community from all areas in east and west Nepal and some from Kathmandu had gathered for the important convention in Dharan," Neupaney told UCA News in Kathmandu.
"Such conventions are important as representatives from all member churches, spread across regions, gather and share their experiences and annual reports and make plans for the future," he added.
Loreto Sister Sushila Kerketta, who is also based in Dharan, said the injured have been rushed to a hospital.
"Almost all the dead were among those sleeping on the ground floor and they included women and children," said Sister Kerketta, who also helped with the rescue work.
According to media reports, at least 1,500 participants were sleeping in the bamboo structure when it collapsed. The injured are being treated at the BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences in Dharan. (SOURCE:



CISA reports that Global warming has led to a dramatic increase in poverty as food shortages worsen in Ethiopia, a Catholic bishop there says.Bishop Rodrigo Meija of the Vicariate of Soddo-Hosanna said food shortages in his diocese caused by lack of rain are leading to poverty, and added that people are attributing the weather changes to global warming.Bishop Rodrigo Meija told the German-based Catholic pastoral charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) that a change in weather patterns was the biggest problem facing rural food growers in the Vicariate, and revealed that farmers had noticed a change occurring in the seasons over a number of years.“The rainy season is no longer regular – so people don’t know when to start planting,” he said. Traditionally Ethiopia enjoyed a regular rainy season from mid-June to mid-September but now rains are intermittent.Bishop Meija said: “At a popular level some people say it is due to global warming – this may be true – all the seasons are disturbed.” The bishop said the problems could be a side effect of global warming, but added he had not seen any scientific data on the subject.He added: “Poverty is certainly linked [to the lack of rainfall] as these people are still basically rural, and live off their own produce which depends on rain.”The bishop explained how, working in tandem with the government, Catholic Relief Services had responded quickly to the food shortage. “At the moment we are catering for the most urgent problems – so for the moment it is under control.”However, he confided in ACN that he was uncertain what would occur over the months ahead. “It is difficult to foresee [what will happen in the future], we don’t know if the effect of global warming will get worse - there is no scientific point of reference.” (SOURCE:


Cath News reports that the Northern Territory Police Association commemorated eight Territory officers who have been killed on duty, to mark National Police Remembrance Day yesterday.
The association said many officers die before their time because of the physical and mental pressures of the job, ABC reported.
One of those was Glen Huitson, a 38 year old police sergeant who was gunned down at a roadblock outside Darwin in 1999 and later died in hospital.
The main Darwin service was held at St Mary's Catholic Church. Other services were held in metropolitan and regional centres across the country to mark the national day of commemoration. (SOURCE:


St. Jerome
Feast: September 30
Feast Day:
September 30
340-342, Stridon, on the border of Dalmatia and Pannonia
420, Bethlehem, Judea
Major Shrine:
Basilica of Saint Mary Major, Rome, Italy
Patron of:
archeologists; archivists; Bible scholars; librarians; libraries; schoolchildren; students; translators

Born at Stridon, a town on the confines of Dalmatia and Pannonia, about the year 340-2; died at Bethlehem, 30 September, 420.
He went to Rome, probably about 360, where he was baptized, and became interested in ecclesiastical matters. From Rome he went to Trier, famous for its schools, and there began his theological studies. Later he went to Aquileia, and towards 373 he set out on a journey to the East. He settled first in Antioch, where he heard Apollinaris of Laodicea, one of the first exegetes of that time and not yet separated from the Church. From 374-9 Jerome led an ascetical life in the desert of Chalcis, south-west of Antioch. Ordained priest at Antioch, he went to Constantinople (380-81), where a friendship sprang up between him and St. Gregory Nazianzus. From 382 to August 385 he made another sojourn in Rome, not far from Pope Damasus. When the latter died (11 December, 384) his position became a very difficult one. His harsh criticisms had made him bitter enemies, who tried to ruin him. After a few months he was compelled to leave Rome. By way of Antioch and Alexandria he reached Bethlehem, in 386. He settled there in a monastery near a convent founded by two Roman ladies, Paula and Eustochium, who followed him to Palestine. Henceforth he led a life of asceticism and study; but even then he was troubled by controversies which will be mentioned later, one with Rufinus and the other with the Pelagians.(SOURCE:


Luke 9: 57 - 62
As they were going along the road, a man said to him, "I will follow you wherever you go."
And Jesus said to him, "Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head."
To another he said, "Follow me." But he said, "Lord, let me first go and bury my father."
But he said to him, "Leave the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God."
Another said, "I will follow you, Lord; but let me first say farewell to those at my home."
Jesus said to him, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God."

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