Tuesday, November 24, 2009
CATHOLIC WORLD NEWS: TUES. NOV. 24, 2009
CATHOLIC WORLD NEWS: TUES. NOV. 24, 2009: HEADLINES-
VATICAN: CULTURAL PATRIMONY OF CHURCH, WORLD DAY FOR MIGRANTS -
AMERICA: USA: ST. LOUIS EXCOMMUNICATED PRIEST WILLING TO STEP DOWN-
EUROPE: DOCTOR EVALUATES SITUATIONS WITH PARALYZED MAN -
ASIA: PHILLIPINES: CNN HERO OF THE YEAR PROVIDES INSPIRATION -
AFRICA: ZIMBABWE: PRIEST ATTACKED BY SOLDIERS-
AUSTRALIA: CARDINAL PELL EXPRESSES TREPIDATION OVER RIGHTS COMMISSION-
CULTURAL PATRIMONY OF CHURCH, WORLD DAY FOR MIGRANTS
(VIS) - In the Holy See Press Office at 11.30 a.m. on Thursday 26 November, Archbishop Gianfranco Ravasi and Francesco Buranelli, respectively president and secretary of the Pontifical Commission for the Cultural Patrimony of the Church, will present a press conference marking the twentieth anniversary of their dicastery. On Friday 27 November, also in the Holy See Press Office, the presentation will take place of the Holy Father’s Message for the ninety-sixth World Day of Migrants and Refugees. The Day, due to be celebrated on 17 January 2010, has as its theme: “Underage migrants and refugees”. Participating in Friday's press conference will be Archbishop Antonio Maria Veglio, Archbishop Agostino Marchetto and Msgr. Novatus Rugambwa, respectively president, secretary and under secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples.OP/CULTURAL PATRIMONY MIGRANTS/... VIS 091124 ()
USA: ST. LOUIS EXCOMMUNICATED PRIEST WILLING TO STEP DOWN
CNA reports that the excommunicated priest of a breakaway St. Louis parish has said he would be willing to step down if it would help the parish.
Fr. Marek Bozek had left his previous position without the permission of his bishop to become the pastor of St. Stanislaus Kostka Church in December 2005. The parish, which is owned and governed by a secular corporation, had resisted the Archdiocese of St. Louis’ efforts to bring parish bylaws into accordance with canon law.
After years of dispute, in 2008 the then-Archbishop Raymond Burke declared Fr. Bozek and the parish board members to be excommunicated and the parish to be schismatic, though some board members have since reconciled with the Catholic Church.
"If it is necessary for me to step aside and continue my ministry elsewhere, I am willing to do that so long as I know that you will not go without pastoral care and the Sacrament," Fr. Bozek said on Sunday, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "I do not want my personal circumstances to impede what is best for St. Stanislaus."
In July 2008 the archdiocese and former parishioners of St. Stanislaus Kostka, who included half of the church’s board of directors, filed a lawsuit seeking to have the church’s pre-2001 bylaws restored. The church’s board rewrote the bylaws in 2001 and again in 2004, eventually eliminating the archbishop’s authority to appoint board members and the pastor.
Fr. Bozek did not comment on whether his announcement was due to the pending litigation. The lawsuit is scheduled to go before trial in St. Louis Circuit Court in February, 2010.
Bernard Huger, an attorney for the archdiocese, said if the priest’s departure provides an opportunity for the parish’s reconciliation it would be “a wonderful thing.”
"Clearly we don't want to have a trial, we just want to have St. Stanislaus returned as a Catholic parish," he told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
According to Huger, Archbishop Robert Carlson, the successor of Archbishop Burke, had made it clear to St. Stanislaus attorneys that he was “most willing to resolve this.”
Fr. Bozek has reportedly supported homosexuality in the Church and women’s ordination. In January he was laicized by Pope Benedict XVI.
St. Stanislaus member Diana Daley, speaking after Mass on Sunday, said that the priest was “bringing people back while the rest of the Catholic Church is driving them away.”
“He says he's willing to step down, but if he does, they might as well close this church.”
Grzegorz Koltuniak, a longtime parishioner critical of Fr. Bozek, told the Post-Dispatch that he had been waiting for the resignation announcement “from the beginning.”(source: http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/new.php?n=17810
DOCTOR EVALUATES SITUATIONS WITH PARALYZED MAN
CNA reports that a paralyzed man who was misdiagnosed as comatose for 23 years is again communicating with the world after new brain scans showed he was in fact conscious. A Catholic bioethics expert suggests the case shows the wisdom of Catholic teaching on the duty to provide sustenance for those believed to be comatose.
Rom Houben, a former martial arts enthusiast, was paralyzed in a 1983 car crash. The Daily Mail reports that his doctors in Zolder, Belgium used the internationally accepted Glasgow Coma Scale to assess his physical and verbal responses, but each time he was graded incorrectly.
“I screamed, but there was nothing to hear,” said Houben, who after therapy now communicates with the aid of a computer. “I dreamed myself away.”
Three years ago, new technology scans showed Houben’s brain was still functioning almost completely normally. His case has just been reported in a scientific paper by the doctor who discovered the mistake, neurological expert Dr. Steven Laureys of the Coma Science Group and Department of Neurology at Liege University Hospital.
Laureys’ re-evaluation of Houben showed that the patient had lost control of his body but was still fully aware of what was happening.
“Frustration is too small a word to describe what I felt,” Houben said. “I shall never forget the day when they discovered what was truly wrong with me - it was my second birth.”
Dr. Laureys explained that medical advances caught up with the patient. His study claims that there may be many similar cases of false comas around the world, the Daily Mail reports.
According to Dr. Laureys, in Germany alone about 100,000 people suffer from severe traumatic brain injury each year. About 20,000 injuries are followed by a coma of three weeks or longer.
“Some of them die, others regain health. But an estimated 3,000 to 5,000 people a year remain trapped in an intermediate stage - they go on living without ever coming back again,” he added.
“Anyone who bears the stamp of ‘unconscious’ just one time hardly ever gets rid of it again,” he remarked.
Houben may never leave the hospital, but he now has a special device which lets him read books lying down.
“I want to read, talk with my friends via the computer and enjoy my life now that people know I am not dead,” he said, according to the Daily Mail.
Catholic News Agency spoke about the case in a Monday phone interview with John Haas, President of the Philadelphia-based National Catholic Bioethics Center.
Houben’s mistaken diagnosis was a “perfect example” of why artificial nutrition and hydration should be continued, Haas said.
He reported that the U.S. Catholic bishops last week passed a modified version of Directive 58 of the Ethical and Religious Directives (ERDs) for Catholic healthcare. This directive spoke of “the moral obligation to continue to provide hydration and nutrition to patients in a compromised state,” Haas said.
“This obligation extends to patients in chronic conditions (e.g. the 'persistent vegetative state') who can reasonably be expected to live indefinitely if given such care,” the ERD read.
“The bishops have always held to that position,” Haas explained, but some other Catholic voices have not.
In 2004, Haas noted, Pope John Paul II delivered an allocution in which he again said it is necessary to provide hydration and nutrition as long as it is “achieving its end” of nurturing the body.
Houben’s recovery, he said, would seem to be “a case where the Church’s position was actually ahead of the curve.”
Asked about Dr. Laureys’ comments about the difficulty of a patient permanently labeled as “unconscious,” Haas said he hoped health care providers would not have negative attitudes towards such patients.
However, he noted that Pope John Paul II described how “regrettable” it was that the medical term for such patients was “persistent vegetative state.”
Some doctors’ comments and medical terminologies “do tend to devalue and demean these people, which is really unfortunate.”
He said the case could help confirm the position of those who oppose physician-assisted suicide, but where the practice is legalized the patients are generally required to be conscious and responsive.
However, Houben’s case would be relevant to those with advanced medical directives who say they want artificial hydration and nutrition removed if they are unconscious and unlikely ever to wake.
The Catholic tradition holds that hydration and nutrition cannot be removed if a person will die of dehydration and starvation, Haas reiterated.(SOURCE: http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/new.php?n=17813
PHILLIPINES: CNN HERO OF THE YEAR PROVIDES INSPIRATION
UCAN reports that CNN Hero of the Year Efren Penaflorida will provide inspiration for other young people at the Asian Youth Day, the organizing bishop says.
Efren Penaflorida, CNN Hero of the Year, started the 'pushcart classroom' to bring education to poor children
His award "would surely be very much a part of our celebration of Asian Youth Day (AYD) because he has done such a great thing!" Bishop-elect Joel Baylon of Legazpi told UCA News.
The fifth AYD, launched on Nov. 23, is being held in Cavite, Penaflorida's home province, just southwest of Manila.
CNN anchorman Anderson Cooper presented the award to Penaflorida, 28, at a ceremony in Los Angeles on Saturday evening in recognition of his work of using a "pushcart classroom" to educate street children.
Penaflorida's work is credited with helping poor children stay away from gangs and crime. Penaflorida received a U$100,000 prize from CNN to continue his project.
In 12 years, he and a group of teenaged volunteers have taught more than 1,500 children aged two to 14 reading, writing, math and English.
Bishop Baylon, who heads the Philippine bishops' Commission on Youth, said that Penaflorida would set a great example for young people. He "is truly an inspiration," the bishop said.
However, he warned that people ministering to youth "should make it clear that being recognized is not a prerequisite for heroism."
Bishop Baylon noted the CNN award for Penaflorida comes just after Manny Pacquiao's world welterweight championship victory against Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto on Nov. 15.
The Asian Youth Day logo: The cross symbolizes the centrality of Jesus Christ. The colors of the Philippine flag indicate the host country. Five heads forming a cup represent the sub-regionsof Asia. The sun symbolizes the availability ofthe Philippines Church to serve the young
"Manny Pacquiao has done great things and also gained many awards and admirers, but it (the CNN award) reminds us there are other forms of heroism and there are many people who do great work quietly."
The current AYD, organized by the Youth Desk of the Federation of Asian Bishops' Conferences' Office of Laity, has the theme, "YAsia Festival! Young Asians: Come Together, Share the Word, Live the Eucharist."
Some 1,500 young Asians are expected to take part in an eight-day pilgrimage focused on the Eucharist. The pilgrimage comprises a three-day immersion course followed by five days of plenary sessions, workshops and liturgical activities.
This Asian Youth Day aims to inspire Asian Catholics to continue and live their faith "passionately, in a more dedicated way," Youth Desk head Jessica Joy Candelario told UCA News.
AYD is held during the years in which no international World Youth Day celebration is organized. After the first AYD in Thailand in 1999, it was held in Taiwan in 2001, in India in 2003 and in Hong Kong in 2006.
ZIMBABWE: PRIEST ATTACKED BY SOLDIERS
Cath News reports that Father Wolfgang Thamm who has worked in Zimbabwe for 51 years, was attacked by soldiers while on his way to pick up a sick parishioner at a clinic, sparking fears of a resurgence of last year's terror as the country begins potentially divisive consultations for a new constitution.
Father Thamm, 76, was carrying out his Sunday routine of visiting parishioners at home and at hospital on November 15, allAfrica.com reports.
He was signalled to stop at the entrance to army barracks, located along the way to the clinic where a sick parishioner was waiting to be picked up. Four soldiers attacked him after he stopped his car, the report said.
"One of them took off my glasses and hit me on the right eye with a fist," he was quoted saying.
"They dragged me out of the car and pushed me into a large puddle and ordered me to sit in the water. "For a moment I hesitated, but one of them hit me hard and I fell into the dirty pool." (SOURCE: http://www.cathnews.com/article.aspx?aeid=17937
CARDINAL PELL EXPRESSES TREPIDATION OVER RIGHTS COMMISSION
Cath News reports that Sydney's Cardinal George Pell expressed trepidation about the country's proposed human rights commission, telling a gathering of the Australian Christian Lobby that it could expect restrictions on religious people.
He cites his lack of optimism to a statement from the commission's race discrimination commissioner, Tom Calma, who was reported right from the start as expressing his concern about a "growing fundamentalist religious lobby" in matters such as same sex relationships, stem cell research and abortion, according to the Zenit news agency.
The same commissioner jointly delivered in August a conference paper about the inquiry, which began by stating, "The compatibility of religious freedom with human rights is the subject of the most comprehensive study ever undertaken in Australia in this area."
Cardinal Pell was cited saying in a speech to the ACL conference last week that the claim underlying that first phrase: "[T]he clear meaning of these words is that religious freedom is not a human right and may not be compatible with human rights."
"This," the cardinal affirmed, "is an astonishing claim from a senior officer of the body responsible for the protection and advancement of human rights in Australia."
He cautioned that Calma and the other writer of the paper, Conrad Gershevitch, conclude by suggesting a greater role for government in managing religious freedom.
"If these individuals have their way," the prelate said, "religious people in Australia can expect much more government restriction and interference, 'even if gentle and gloved.'"
St. Andrew Dung-Lac
Feast: November 24
1785 in Vietnam
21 December 1839 in Hanoi, Vietnam
19 June 1988 by Pope John Paul II
Vietnamese priest and martyr and companion of St. Peter Thi. Andrew was arrested and beheaded on Dcember 21, 1839, with Peter Thi during the harsh anti-Christian persecutions. He was canonized in 1988.(SOURCE: http://www.ewtn.com/saintsHoly/saints/A/standewdunglac.asp
Luke 21: 5 - 11
And as some spoke of the temple, how it was adorned with noble stones and offerings, he said,
"As for these things which you see, the days will come when there shall not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down."
And they asked him, "Teacher, when will this be, and what will be the sign when this is about to take place?"
And he said, "Take heed that you are not led astray; for many will come in my name, saying, `I am he!' and, `The time is at hand!' Do not go after them.
And when you hear of wars and tumults, do not be terrified; for this must first take place, but the end will not be at once."
Then he said to them, "Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom;
there will be great earthquakes, and in various places famines and pestilences; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven.