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Friday, January 8, 2010

CATHOLIC WORLD NEWS: FRI. JAN. 8, 2009


CATHOLIC WORLD NEWS: FRI. JAN. 8, 2009: HEADLINES-
VATICAN: POPE THANKS AGENTS OF THE PUBLIC SECURITY INSPECTORATE-
ASIA: MALAYSIA: 4 CHRISTIAN CHURCHES ATTACKED OVER ALLAH CONTROVERSY-
AMERICA: USA: FORMER PRESIDENT BUSH TO RECEIVE PRO-LIFE AWARD-
AFRICA: KENYA: SEVERE FLOODS LEAVE THOUSANDS IN DANGER-
EUROPE: SPAIN: YOUNG PEOPLE PRAY BEFORE WYD CROSS FOR VICTIMS-
AUSTRALIA: IMMERSION TRIP FOR STUDENTS TO POOR COUNTRY-




VATICAN

POPE THANKS AGENTS OF THE PUBLIC SECURITY INSPECTORATE



(VIS) - In a traditional meeting that takes place every year in January, Benedict XVI today received members of the General Inspectorate for Public Security in the Vatican. In his remarks the Pope thanked the agents for the work they do to maintain public order in St. Peter's Square and the area around the Vatican, highlighting how their task "is particularly important for the mission of the Roman Pontiff". "Your efforts", he went on, "favour a climate of serenity and tranquillity which gives those who come to the centre of Christianity the chance to enjoy an authentic religious experience, in contact with the fundamental monuments of the Christian faith such as the tomb of the Apostle Peter, the relics of many saints and the tombs of numerous Pontiffs, loved and venerated by Christian people". Recalling then the "commitment and great responsibility" required of the agents in the performance of their duties, the Pope told them that their work should be "a special way to serve the Lord, almost as if to 'prepare the way for Him', so that each pilgrim's and each visitor's experience at the centre of Christianity may represent a special occasion to encounter the Lord Who changes lives". The Holy Father concluded by expressing the hope that the work undertaken by the agents of the General Inspectorate for Public Security "may make you ever stronger and more coherent in your faith", and he encouraged them "not to be afraid or ashamed to express that faith in your own families, in the workplace and wherever you may find yourselves".AC/.../INSPECTORATE PUBLIC SECURITY VIS 100108 (280)




AUDIENCES VATICAN CITY, 8 JAN 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences: - Cardinal Camillo Ruini, His Holiness' vicar general emeritus for the diocese of Rome. - Archbishop Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer S.J., secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.AP/.../... VIS 100108 (50)




OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS VATICAN CITY, 8 JAN 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed: - Bishop Anthony C. Fisher O.P., auxiliary of Sydney, Australia, as bishop of Parramatta (area 4,289, population 973,341, Catholics 319,278, priests 150, permanent deacons 6, religious 376), Australia. - Antonio Paolucci, director of the Vatican Museums, and Maria Cristina Carlo-Stella, bureau chief at the Fabric of St. Peter's, respectively, as president and secretary of the Permanent Commission for the Custody of Historical and Artistic Monuments of the Holy See. - Msgr. Nicolas Henry Marie Denis Thevenin, nunciature counsellor, to the College of Apostolic Protonotaries "de numero participantium".NER:NA/.../... VIS 100108 (110)



ASIA
MALAYSIA: 4 CHRISTIAN CHURCHES ATTACKED OVER ALLAH CONTROVERSY


Asia new reports that three Protestant places of worship, and one Catholic in the sights of Islamic fundamentalists. The offices of Metro Tabernacle Church damaged. Cars owned by Catholics vandalised. The director of the Catholic weekly Herald confirms "pressure" on government and judiciary to "cancel the Supreme Court ruling."
Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews) - "There is no immediate danger, but the situation is still worrying." This was the comment reported to AsiaNews by Fr Lawrence Andrew, editor of the Catholic weekly Herald, on last night’s attack of "three Protestant and one Catholic church ". The priest also confirms "a national propaganda campaign" of the Muslim majority, so that "the name of Allah can only be used to refer to the God of Islam."
Around midnight on Wednesday an explosion damaged the administrative offices of Metro Tabernacle Church, a Protestant church in Kuala Lumpur. Three other Christian places of worship, including the Catholic Church of the Assumption in Petaling Jaya, were also attacked. The assailants threw a Molotov cocktail inside the building, which caused minimal damage. Fr. Lawrence reported that in addition to places of worship some "cars owned by Catholics” were attacked, with “bodywork damaged and broken windows, but there are no injuries."
The anger of the fundamentalist wing in the country was unleashed by the December 31st decision by Supreme Court judges allowing Christians to use the word "Allah" in reference to God contrary to the government ban. The government has announced it will appeal the ruling. Today a protest rally, sponsored by 58 Muslim NGOs, was held on the streets of the capital which was attended by about 300 people.
"There have been no reports of incidents during the protest - confirmed Fr Lawrence to AsiaNews - because the police did a good job. The security forces have are committed to keeping the peace and preventing calm an escalation of violence". The priest said that there is a campaign of propaganda in Malaysia that seeks to "put pressure on the Government": Islam is the state religion, it must maintain a dominant position and the rules must be in accord with Islamic law.
"We are worried - says the priest - but the situation is not dangerous as of yet. We have established close cooperation with the government to help restore peace in the country”. In order to avoid further violence, Fr. Lawrence confirms that "we will not use the word Allah in the editions of our newspaper until the judiciary issues the final ruling."
"Today the TV has broadcast the Friday prayers all over the country - concluded the priest - During the sermon it was repeated several times that Allah is the God of Muslims and they alone can use it. It is an attempt to put pressure on judges, to cancel the ruling of the Supreme Court. With a climate like this, it is not possible to carry out a fair and just trial. "(DS)
(SOURCE: http://www.asianews.it/index.php?l=en&art=17291&size=A



AMERICA
USA: FORMER PRESIDENT BUSH TO RECEIVE PRO-LIFE AWARD


CNA reports that Former President George W. Bush will be presented with an award by the lay group Legatus, for his work in advancing the pro-life cause. The ceremony will be held at the annual Legatus Summit Feb. 5-6 in Dana Point, Calif., where Bush will address the business group for the first time since leaving office a year ago.
The prestigious Cardinal John J. O'Connor Pro-Life Award is being given in response to the former president's eight years of pro-life legislation. Legatus cites his administration's opposition to embryonic stem cell research, an executive order barring federal funds from being used for abortion related projects abroad, the appointment of two pro-life Supreme Court Justices and a rule protecting federally funded health employees from taking part in abortion or practices that conflict with their faith as policies that Bush helped enact during his presidency.
The group of Catholic business professionals also noted that one of the former president's last efforts while in office included a declaration of Jan. 18, 2009 as “National Sanctity of Human Life Day,” along with a statement that “the most basic duty of government is to protect the life of the innocent.”
The former president will be a accompanied by a host of other speakers at the event, including Cardinal Francis George, Archbishop Timothy Dolan, actress Patricia Heaton, entrepreneur Frank J. Hanna III, Fr. Robert Spitzer, Newt and Callista Gingrich, and Thomas Donahue, the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
“I’ve been speaking to a number of Legatus chapters about the Summit, and people are really excited,” said Kathleen Eaton, the event chairperson, on Thursday. “It’s been a rough year on a number of fronts, and they really need this shot in the arm. They want to come together to pray and learn more about what the Church is saying on different issues.”
Previous recipients of the Cardinal John J. O'Connor Pro-Life Award have included Fr. Frank Pavone of Priests for Life, Fr. Thomas Euteneuer of Human Life International, Judie Brown of the American Life League, Sen. Rick Santorum, Sen. Sam Brownback, and Rep. Henry Hyde.(SOURCE: http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/bush_to_receive_cardinal_oconnor_award_for_pro-life_efforts/


AFRICA
KENYA: SEVERE FLOODS LEAVE THOUSANDS IN DANGER


All Africa reports that the United Nations is sending health care kits and other supplies for 30,000 victims of massive flooding in Kenya, where thousands of others are feared to be at risk if heavy rains persist.

Roads, bridges and other infrastructure including schools and businesses have been damaged in northern, central and western Kenya by the rains, which follow a prolonged drought in some areas. Reports also indicate that thousands of livestock have been washed away by the floods and crops harmed although the impact is yet to be fully assessed, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported today.
"General food distribution is required for those affected," it said. "While some initial distribution has been made at displacement sites, there is need to ensure that sustained assistance is provided to affected populations."
The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) is dispatching an inter-agency health kit, enough to assist 30,000 people for one month, as well as 50 drums of chlorine powder, 20 pool testers with chemicals, 500 boxes of water purification chemicals, 1,500 jerry cans and 200,000 chlorine tablets to Turkana district.
Access to affected villages has been challenging and only possible through four-wheel drive vehicles.
The Government is leading coordination of the response, supported by the Kenya Red Cross, UNICEF and the Christian relief non-governmental organization (NGO) World Vision on the ground. OCHA is working with all the partners in assessing the level of needs and gaps.(source: http://allafrica.com/stories/201001070912.html



EUROPE
SPAIN: YOUNG PEOPLE PRAY BEFORE WYD CROSS FOR VICTIMS

CNA reports that a large group of young people gathered before the World Youth Day Cross and icon of the Virgin Mary in Madrid this week at El Pozo train station to pray for victims of terrorism, specifically the 67 people who died there during the March 11, 2004 bombings.
The event was part of the preparations for WYD 2011, which will take place in Madrid. It was attended by numerous youth volunteers and disabled young people.
Victor Hernandez of the Archdiocese of Madrid's Health Care Ministry said, “We are all praying in the same way, regardless of our physical state. Occasions such as these show that values important to young people include not only strength and beauty, but also the capacity to give of oneself, solidarity and striving for the dignity of all the children of God.”
Prior to its trip to the train station, the WYD cross was taken to the Soto del Real prison, where it was received by inmates and by the Archbishop of Madrid, Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela.
(source: http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/youth_pray_before_wyd_cross_for_victims_of_terrorism_in_madrid/

AUSTRALIA
IMMERSION TRIP FOR STUDENTS TO POOR COUNTRY


Cath News reports that an "alternative schoolies immersion trip" last month to the Philippines proved to be an eye-opener for Victorian school students.
Former Catholic College Bendigo student Nigel Self said the two-week trip brought them face to face with the extremely poor living conditions people deal with around the world.
The trip involved visiting orphanages, schools, universities, daycare centres and dump sites where many people live, the Bendigo Advertiser reports.
"It was very confronting going to the dump site," said Nigel, 18.
In addition, Nigel said he was amazed by their beliefs in religion and willingness to give.
"With them not having much, they really have more spiritually," he added.
The immersion trip was arranged in partnership with the Diocese of Sandhurst and the University of San Carlos at Cebu in the Phillipines. (SOURCE: http://www.cathnews.com/article.aspx?aeid=18644


TODAY'S SAINT


St. Apollinaris of Hierapolis
BISHOP
Feast: January 8
Information:
Feast Day:
January 8
Died:
175

CLAUDIUS APOLLINARIS, Bishop of Hierapolis in Phrygia, was one of the most illustrious prelates of the second age. Notwithstanding the great encomiums bestowed on him by Eusebius, St. Jerome, Theodoret, and ethers, but little is known of his actions; and. his writings,which then were held in great esteem, seem now to be all lost. He wrote many able treatises against the heretics, and pointed out, as St. Jerome testifies, from what philosophical sect each heresy derived its errors. Nothing rendered his name so illustrious, however, as his noble apology for the Christian religion which he addressed to the Emperor Marcus Aurelius, about the year 175, soon after the miraculous victory that prince had obtained over the Quadi by the prayers of the Christians. St. Apollinaris reminded the emperor of the benefit he had received from God through the prayers of his Christian subjects, and implored protection for them against the persecution of the pagans. Marcus Aurelius published an edict in which he forbade any one, under pain of death, to accuse a Christian on account of his religion; by a strange inconsistency, he had not the courage to abolish the laws then in force against the Christians, and, as a consequence, many of them suffered martyrdom, though their accusers were also put to death. The date of St. Apollinaris' death is not known; the Roman Martyrology mentions him on the 8th of January.(source: http://www.ewtn.com/saintsHoly/saints/A/stapollinarisofhierapolis.asp


TODAY'S GOSPEL


Luke 5: 12 - 16
12
While he was in one of the cities, there came a man full of leprosy; and when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and besought him, "Lord, if you will, you can make me clean."
13
And he stretched out his hand, and touched him, saying, "I will; be clean." And immediately the leprosy left him.
14
And he charged him to tell no one; but "go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as Moses commanded, for a proof to the people."
15
But so much the more the report went abroad concerning him; and great multitudes gathered to hear and to be healed of their infirmities.
16
But he withdrew to the wilderness and prayed.
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