Monday, November 2, 2009





Program for Papal visit:

Sunday, 8 November 2009
Vatican City
Departure by helicopter from the Vatican heliport

Departure by plane from Ciampino Airport (Rome) for Brescia.

Arrival at "Tenente Alfredo Fusco" military airport in Ghedi (Brescia)

Private Visit to the parish church of Botticino Sera and Veneration of the remains of Saint Archangel Tadini.

Welcoming in the square in front of the Cathedral of Brescia and brief visit to the Cathedral

Eucharistic Concelebration in Paul VI Square
Homily of the Holy Father

Recitation of the Angelus Domini in Paul VI Square
Address of the Holy Father
Greeting to the organizers of the visit in the Paul VI Pastoral Center

Visit to the house where Pope Paul VI was born and to the new site of Paul VI Institute in Concesio.

Official meeting for the inauguration of the new site and for awarding the Sixth Paul VI International Prize in the Vittorio Montini Auditorium of the Paul VI Institute in Concesio
Address of the Holy Father
Visit to the parish of Saint Antonino in Concesio, where John Baptist Montini was baptized
Address of the Holy Father
Departure by plane from the "Tenente Alfredo Fusco" military airport of Ghedi (Brescia) for Ciampino (Rome)

Arrival at Ciampino Airport and transfer by helicopter to the Vatican


The USCCB reports that a proposed document from the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities looks at the relationship between sex and procreation and the moral issues surrounding various technologies for treating infertility, including in vitro fertilization, embryo adoption and surrogacy. The document,"Life-Giving Love in an Age of Technology," will be debated and voted on by the full body of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) at their November 16-19 meeting in Baltimore. “The Church has compassion for couples suffering from infertility and wants to be of real help to them," explains the draft document."At the same time, some ‘reproductive technologies’ are not legitimate ways to solve those problems. We bishops of the United States offer this reflection to explain why. We also offer it to provide hope—real hope that couples can fulfill their procreative potential and build a family while fully respecting God’s design for their marriage and for the gift of children." “Life-Giving Love in an Age of Technology" draws on Church teaching, including Vatican documents Donum Vitae (1987), Evangelium Vitae (1995) and Dignitas Personae (2008), the last of which was released during the development of the bishops’ document. It includes questions and answers on the issue and testimony from couples who followed the Church’s teaching, and offers pastoral guidance and encouragement for couples who struggle with infertility. The document reaffirms Catholic teaching against in vitro fertilization, egg and sperm donation, surrogacy, cloning and embryo donation. It also explains that Catholic couples may pursue a wide variety of ethical treatments, including hormonal treatment and other medications, surgery to repair damaged fallopian tubes, natural family planning, and means for alleviating male infertility factors. Says the document:"These avenues do not substitute for the married couple’s act of loving union; rather, they assist this act in reaching its potential for giving rise to a new human life."After being debated by the U.S. bishops in Baltimore, "Life-Giving Love in an Age of Technology" will require a vote of approval by two-thirds of the membership of the USCCB. This educational resource was prepared by the Pro-Life Committee as a companion to the document "Married Love and the Gift of Life," explaining the Church's teaching on contraception. Intended especially for engaged and married couples, that document was approved by the bishops in 2007 and has been distributed through many Catholic marriage preparation programs in the United States. (SOURCE:



The Catholic Herald reports that few better places outside London than Eric Mendelsohn's and Serge Chermayeff's De La Warr Pavilion, built in 1935 on the front at Bexhill-on-Sea in Sussex, could be chosen to mount an exhibition commemorating the 175th anniversary of the foundation of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1834. Long considered one of the pioneer buildings of the International Modern Style, it was described by Charles Reilly soon after completion as "a revelation from another planet in the rococo redness of that terrible town". Others, like Henry-Russell Hitchcock, recognised it in 1936 as "the most conspicuous and successful modern building in England". While today Alan Powers, the organiser of the exhibition, Mind into Matter, for RIBA South East, argues that since its restoration in 2005, "the pavilion has become a place to bring people who need to be convinced that Modern architecture has a positive and life-enhancing quality".This austere exhibition breaks new ground in the appreciation and understanding of architecture. Composed of architectural drawings and outstanding photographs taken by Nigel Green, the exhibition selects eight exemplary buildings that many will find unfamiliar and surprising. Victorian and Edwardian enthusiasts will welcome Charles Barry's Reform Club, Deane and Woodward's Oxford Museum, Philip Webb's Clouds House and Ninian Comper's St Mary's, Wellingborough. Secure, if recondite, ground there. The modernist will find the De La Warr Pavilion as familiar as the Parthenon, but what of Alison and Peter Smithson's Economist Group buildings in St James's, London, Craig and Collinge's Royal Mail Mechanised Letter Office at Hemel Hempstead and Tony Fretton's British Embassy in Warsaw? The last three represent unconsidered historical territory, but so, in this unforeseen survey divided into intervals of 25 years, do the rest because I suspect that, given their competitors, none of their architects would have expected to be included in such a record. There is no Pugin, Mackintosh, Voysey or Lutyens, no Giles Gilbert Scott, Basil Spence, Norman Foster or Richard Rogers; the obvious is studiedly omitted. Being exemplary does not mean being familiar, nor does unfamiliarity mean being mediocre. In this setting exemplary means that there is something of permanent value to learn from each building. We are taken into their architects' minds and, as Powers explains: "Each of the selected buildings has a strong sense of purpose, including a desire to teach a lesson, but also to serve a particular set of needs, practical and symbolic."For Catholic and Anglican visitors the inclusion of St Mary's, Wellingborough, Comper's masterpiece set in a Midlands industrial suburb, has much to teach because it was the most profoundly Catholic church built in England in the 20th century when the Church was seen as a historic faith and its significance transcends its denominational boundaries. Powers describes it as "one of Britain's unforgettable architectural experiences" and goes beyond aesthetic appreciation by analysing its uniqueness as a place of worship and the integrity of planning.Most visitors are entranced by the beauty of the interior but few recognise the powerful depth of thought subsumed in tradition that lies behind the synthesis of styles and its function as a church of the Eucharist. The altar stands beneath a ciborium magnum of burnished gold set within gilded, white and black iron screens as the liturgical heart and inspiration of the building. At the present time no church in England embodies so fully Pope Benedict XVI's understanding of the hermeneutic of continuity in theology, doctrine and liturgical development, and the place of beauty within it, than this matchless church.Comper's mature planning, based on fourth-century North African basilican models, helped to bring life to Christian worship and Powers makes the startling point that "this was, in its way, as revolutionary as Walter Gropius's Fagus Factory of 1911, often seen as the founding of Modernism". He goes further by identifying other similarities - "the search for light as a spiritual quality in buildings, and the desire to symbolise community". Comper's theories remain to be tested.The freshness and brilliance of Powers's approach to architecture and buildings not only enable people to see and understand them better but comprehend the design process and the continuity of expression achieved in buildings of markedly different, sometimes alien, appearance. What binds these eight disparate buildings together is the variance of Classicism even when stripped of historical references. So Fretton's abstract glass embassy at Warsaw, completed this year, suggests not only Mies van der Rohe but the German neo-Classical architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel, a contemporary of Charles Barry, who inspired Mies, thus linking the last building in the exhibition to the first, the Reform Club, completed in 1843. (SOURCE:

CISA reports that the Catholic Archbishop of Mombasa, Boniface Lele, has said that in order to maintain good relations between Christians and Muslims, clerics from both religions need to be trained on peace, coexistence, conflict resolutions and management.Archbishop Lele said this during a Heythrop Conference in the UK on Islam - Christian relations in Africa, sponsored by the aid and development agency CAFOD.The archbishop whose archdiocese is predominately Muslim further illustrated his point by giving an example of the already existing Coast Interfaith Councils of Kenya (CICC), with funding from the Catholic Relief Services (CRS).“We should nevertheless remain realistic that we shall always have a certain amount of skeptics among Christians when it comes to Christian-Muslim relations,” Lele said.All Christian-Muslim forums must schedule adequate time for each religious group to undertake guided intra-religious dialogue sessions where religious homogeneous group positions can be given a chance to develop, the archbishop suggested.He said that the existing good working relationship among Christians and Muslims has enabled a number of people from both religions to benefit from health, water, sanitation and education services through assistance from partners who cherish serving fellow brothers and sisters without discrimination on the religious basis, CAFOD being one of them.However, he said, “pluralism in Catholic-sponsored schools with majority Muslim students and teachers remain a challenge in the archdiocese owing to loopholes inherent in the Education Act of Kenya.“Recently the issue of the wearing of Hijabs (Muslim head gear) by girls in Catholic-sponsored schools has sparked heated debate. We as Catholics say it is divisive between male and female students with Muslims saying it is part of their faith.”Lele said a comprehensive government policy on student's religious dressing code, diet, sharing of desks by male and female students is needed and policies on how to accommodate multiple religious calendars, daily and weekly prayers and worship in Kenya without disrupting learning.“Head teachers also, who take positions according to their conscience or choose to exercise their religious freedom by holding different views with their employer need guidelines on how to express their opinions without risking their jobs,” he advised.Still on challenges the archbishop said, “There is little agreement and sometimes open disapproval on the need for the Church to reach out to Muslims in dialogue among senior church leaders.”Lele said, “To date the activities regarding Christian Muslim Dialogue are handled by interested bishops, individual priests and religious institutions with little co-ordination between them.However, he reiterated that individual initiatives by a few bishops, priests and religious institutions has generated local available theological resource people now available to facilitate interreligious dialogue training.He mentioned that the Kenya Episcopal conference (KEC)-Ecumenical Commission has begun to consolidate individual bishops, priests and religious institutions activities and with time they look forward to a fully fledged KEC-Interreligious Commission.“We should be witnesses of Gods indiscriminate love. After all people of all cultural and religious dispositions are made in the image of God,” he said.He said to manage relations with Christian groups that take a very different view on relations with Muslims communities, “We need to look deeply within the Catholic fraternity and acknowledge the various divergent views among Christians as far as Christian Muslim relations are concerned.”He said, “Then and only then can we credibly engage other Christians groups that take a very different view on relations with Muslims communities.”We all know that negative "Christian" behaviour towards people of different religions is fuelled by a parochial theological world views faithfully transmitted by theological mentors to theological novices.He added that without solid ecumenical relations among Christians, the mission to dialogue with Muslims will be fragmented.“I hope gradually the same clerics will overcome the attitude of defending one's own religion when ever it's accused of violence and instead jointly divulge into the murky waters of history and theology to understand better their mutual role in past violence and their joint responsibilities to be witnesses of peace in the world today,” the clergy said. (SOURCE:

UCAN reports that a cafe run by the Catholic Church is giving a newfound sense of confidence to its staff of mentally challenged people.

Marcia Choi Seung-mi (left) and Kim Nam-deok, two‘stars’ of a Church project to give disabled people a job
Marcia Choi Seung-mi, one of eight such people who work in Granada cafe, says she is now confident she can do things as well as other people.
"Two-and-half years' work as a coffeemaker here have given me that confidence and I really thank Brother Andrew Lee who helped me work here," said Choi.
"In the early stages I couldn't tell the difference between cappuccino and caffe latte. I even made hot coffee many times when customers ordered it iced," the 34-year-old Catholic told UCA News.
Choi now dreams of becoming a barista, a coffee-house employee who prepares and serves espresso-based coffee drinks.
Kim Nam-deok, who like Choi works three days a week at the cafe, shared: "I work as a cashier and a waiter but I am still slow to calculate money. Customers wait for me patiently without complaint, for which I really thank them."
"I am so happy here and don't want to go to any other workplace," he added with a smile.

Choi makes coffee while Kim prepares to serve customers
Cafe manager Yu Jum-hwa, told UCA News that as far she knew, Granada was the first coffee shop run by the Catholic Church for the welfare of disabled people.
The Hospitaller Order of St. John of God in Korea, which serves the disabled, alcoholic, homeless and aged, runs the project at its Evergreen Rehabilitation Center in Seoul.
Yu, who is also the social welfare worker at the center, said that Choi and Kim are the star performers at the cafe and get 380,000 won (US$320) a month.
"When I got my first pay from the cafe, I bought a handkerchief for my mother and a necktie for my father. They were so happy they almost cried. I will never forget that," Choi said.
Center director Brother Andrew Lee Eun-myeong said Evergreen also runs small businesses such as operating vending machines, packing stationery and making religious items.
People with disabilities are employed in all these businesses, he said.

Cath News reports the Catholic and Anglican Churches are praising a decision that overturned a finding favouring a gay couple's bid to become foster parents, with Sydney's Cardinal George Pell calling it a "helpful" step "in the right direction", said The Daily Telegraph.

The couple, who were refused access to the Wesley Mission's foster care agency because they are homosexual, had successfully pleaded their case to the Administrative Decisions Tribunal, they were awarded $10,000 and the Wesley Mission told to change its practices so it didn't discriminate.
A highly critical appeal panel has however quashed that decision and ordered the original tribunal to hear the case again.
Magistrate Nancy Hennessy instructed the tribunal to take into consideration whether monogamous heterosexual couples are the norm for "Wesleyanism" and whether they might have had to reject the couple in order to preserve their beliefs and not offend people in their religion.
"It is important to protect people from unjust discrimination but it is ridiculous to claim discrimination every time we show a preference for some people over others," Cardinal Pell is quoted as saying in support."Anti-discrimination laws should not be used to change how church agencies organise themselves." (SOURCE:

Commemoration of All Faithful Departed
Feast: November 2
Feast Day:
November 2

By purgatory, no more is meant by Catholics than a middle state of souls, viz. of purgation from sin by temporary chastisements, or a punishment of some sin inflicted after death, which is not eternal. As to the place, manner, or kind of these sufferings, nothing has been defined by the church; and all who with Dr. Deacon except against this doctrine, on account of the circumstance of a material fire, quarrel about a mere scholastic question in which a person is at liberty to choose either side. This doctrine of a state of temporary punishment after death for some sins is interwoven with the fundamental articles of the Christian religion. For, as eternal torments are the portion of all souls which depart this life under the guilt of mortal sin, and everlasting bliss of those who die in the state of grace, so it is an obvious consequence that among the latter many souls may be defiled with lesser stains, and cannot enter immediately into the joy of the Lord. Repentance may be sincere, though something be wanting to its perfection; some part of the debt which the penitent owes to the divine justice may remain uncancelled, as appears from several instances mentioned in the holy scriptures, as of David, of the Israelites in the wilderness, of Moses and Aaron, and of the prophet slain by a lion, which debt is to be satisfied for either in this life or in the next. Certainly, some sins are venial, which deserve not eternal death; yet, if not effaced by condign penance in this world, must be punished in the next. Every wound is not mortal; nor does every small offence totally destroy friendship. The scriptures frequently mention these venial sins, from which ordinarily the just are not exempt, who certainly would not be just if these lesser sins, into which men easily fall by surprise, destroyed grace in them, or if they fell from charity. Yet the smallest sin excludes a soul from heaven so long as it is not blotted out. Nothing which is not perfectly pure and spotless can stand before God, who is infinite purity and sanctity, and cannot bear the sight of the least iniquity. Whence it is said of heaven, "There shall in no wise enter into it anything defiled." It is the great employment of all the saints or pious persons here below by rigorous self-examination to try their actions and thoughts, and narrowly to look into all the doublings and recesses of their hearts; continually to accuse and judge themselves, and by daily tears of compunction, works of penance, and the use of the sacraments, to correct all secret disorders, and wipe away all filth which their affections may contract. Yet who is there who keeps so constant a guard upon his heart and whole conduct as to avoid all insensible self-deceptions? Who is there upon whose heart no inordinate attachments steal; into whose actions no sloth, remissness, or some other irregularity ever insinuates itself? Or whose compunction and penance is so humble and clear-sighted, so fervent and perfect, that no lurking disorder of his whole life escapes him, and is not perfectly washed away by the sacred blood of Christ, applied by these means or conditions to the soul? Who has perfectly subdued and regulated all his passions, and grounded his heart in perfect humility, meekness, charity, piety, and all other virtues, so as to bear the image of God in himself, or to be holy and perfect, even as he is, without spot? Perhaps scarce in any moment of our lives is our intention or motive so fervent, and so pure or exempt from the least imperceptible sinister influence and mixture of sloth, self-complacency, or other inordinate affection or passion; and all other ingredients or circumstances of our action so perfect and holy, as to be entirely without failure in the eyes of God, which nothing can escape. Assiduous conversation with heaven, constant watchfulness, self-denial, and a great purity of heart, with the assistance of an extraordinary grace, give the saints a wonderful light to discover and correct the irregularities of their affections. Yet it is only by the fervent spirit and practice of penance that they can be purified in the sight of God.
The Blessed Virgin was preserved by an extraordinary grace from the least sin in the whole tenor of her life and actions; but, without such a singular privilege, even the saints are obliged to say that they sin daily; but they forthwith rise again by living in constant compunction and watchfulness over themselves. Venial sins of surprise are readily effaced by penance, as we hope of the divine mercy; even such sins which are not discovered by us are virtually repented of by a sincere compunction, if it be such as effectually destroys them. Venial sins of malice, or committed with full deliberation, are of a different nature, far more grievous and fatal, usually of habit, and lead even to mortal sin. Those Christians who shun these more willful offences, yet are not very watchful over themselves, and labour not very strenuously in subduing all their passions, have just reason to fear that some inordinate affections taint almost the whole body of their actions, without being sufficiently repented of. And the very best Christians must always tremble at the thought of the dreadful account they have to give to God for every idle word or thought. No one can be justified before God but by his pure and free mercy. Yet no man will say that a venial sin, which destroys not sanctifying grace, will be punished with eternal torments. Hence there must be a relaxation of some sin in the world to come, as is sufficiently implied, according to the remark of St. Austin, in these words of Christ, where he says that the sin against the Holy Ghost "shall not be forgotten in this world, nor in the world to come." Christ, exhorting us to agree with our adversary or accuser by appeasing our conscience, mentions a place of punishment out of which souls shall be delivered, though not before they shall have paid the last farthing.
The church of Christ is composed of three different pasts: the triumphant in heaven, the militant on earth, and the patient or suffering in purgatory. Our charity embraces all the members of Christ. Our love for him engages and binds us to his whole body, and teaches us to share both the miseries and afflictions, and the comforts and blessings of all that are comprised in it. The communion of saints which we profess in our creed implies a communication of certain good works and offices, and a mutual intercourse among all the members of Christ. This we maintain with the saints in heaven by thanking and praising God for their triumphs and crowns, imploring their intercession, and receiving the succours of their charitable solicitude and prayers for us; likewise with the souls in purgatory, by soliciting the divine mercy in their favour. Nor does it seem to be doubted but they, as they are in a state of grace and charity, pray also for us; though the church never addresses public suffrages to them, not being warranted by primitive practice and tradition so to do. That to pray for the faithful departed is a pious and wholesome charity and devotion is proved clearly from the Old Testament, and from the doctrine and practice of the Jewish synagogue. The baptisms or legal purifications which the Jews sometimes used for the dead demonstrate their belief that the dead receive spiritual succours from the devotion of the living. In the second book of the Machabees it is related that Judas, the Machabee, sent twelve thousand ducats of silver to the temple for sacrifices to be offered for the dead, "thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection. It is therefore a holy and a wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from their sins." This book is ranked among the canonical scriptures by the apostolical canons, Tertullian, St. Cyprian, St. Hilary, St. Ambrose, St. Austin, the third council of Carthage, &c. Some ancients call it apocryphal, meaning that it was not in the Hebrew canon compiled by Esdras, it being writ after his time; and Origen and St. Jerome, who give it that epithet, sometimes quoted it as of divine authority. The Catholic church admits the deutero-canonical books of those which were compiled after the time of Esdras as written equally by divine inspiration. If some among the ancients doubted of them before tradition in this point had been examined and cleared, several parts of the New Testament which are admitted by Protestants have been no less called in question. Protestants, who at least allow this book a historical credit, must acknowledge this to have been the belief and practice of the most virtuous and zealous high-priest, of all the priests and doctors attached to the service of the temple, and of the whole Jewish nation; and a belief and custom which our blessed Redeemer nowhere reprehended in them.(SOURCE:


John 11: 17 - 27
Now when Jesus came, he found that Laz'arus had already been in the tomb four days.
Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles off,
and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother.
When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, while Mary sat in the house.
Martha said to Jesus, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.
And even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you."
Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again."
Martha said to him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day."
Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live,
and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?"
She said to him, "Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, he who is coming into the world."

No comments: