Friday, February 12, 2010



CATHOLICS AND ORTHODOX DEFENDING CHRISTIAN VALUES VATICAN CITY, 12 FEB 2010 (VIS) - At midday today the Holy Father received prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Romania, who have just completed their "ad limina" visit. The Pope began his remarks by mentioning the bishops, priests, religious and faithful who, "in the period of persecution, showed dauntless attachment to Christ and His Church, and maintained their faith intact". He then thanked the prelates for their "generous dedication to serving the rebirth and development of the Catholic community" in Romania and the Republic of Moldova, and encouraged them "to show the faithful an itinerary of mature and responsible Christian faith, especially through the reaching of religion, catechesis, also of adults, and preparation for the Sacraments". This, he continued, "requires the joint preparation of pastoral programmes, with a view to the 'bonum animarum' of all Catholics from various rites and ethnicities". "In this Year for Priests I encourage you to become true fathers to your clergy. ... Be careful to foster communion among yourselves and with them in a climate of affection, care, and respectful and fraternal dialogue. Concern yourselves with their spiritual and material situation, and with the theological and pastoral aggiornamento they need". Benedict XVI highlighted how "the primary task of bishops is to promote vocational pastoral care, and the human, spiritual and intellectual formation of candidates to the priesthood in seminaries and other institutes of formation, ... also through the careful selection of educators and teachers. Similar care must be shown in forming members of institutes of consecrated life, especially female institutes", he said. "The flowering of priestly and religious vocations depends to a large extent on the moral and religious health of Christian families", the Pope explained. In this context he referred to "the scourges of abortion, corruption, alcoholism and drugs, as well as birth control by methods contrary to the dignity of the human person", saying that "in order to combat these challenges, you must promote parish consultancy services and organise improved pastoral care of the young". The Holy Father also highlighted the need "to make a decisive commitment to favour the presence of Christian values in society, creating centres of formation where young people can learn authentic values, enriched by your countries' cultural gifts, in order to enable them to bear witness to those values in the environments in which they live". "In this context", he continued, "the witness of fraternity between Catholics and Orthodox is particularly important; may it prevail over divisions and dissent, and open hearts to reconciliation", he said. Recalling then the tenth anniversary, which fell in May 2009, of "the historic trip of Venerable John Paul II to Romania", the Pope expressed the hope that "the desire for unity aroused by that visit may nourish prayer and a commitment to continue dialogue in charity and truth, and to promote joint initiatives". Benedict XVI concluded: "One particularly important area of collaboration between Orthodox and Catholics today concerns the defence of the Christian roots of Europe and of Christian values, as well as joint witness on such themes as the family, bioethics, human rights, honesty in public life and ecology. ... Constructive dialogue between Orthodox and Catholics will not fail to foment unity and harmony, not only for your countries, but for all of Europe".AL/.../ROMANIA VIS 100212 (560)

CONSISTORY ON SEVERAL CAUSES OF CANONISATION VATICAN CITY, 12 FEB 2010 (VIS) - In the Consistory Hall of the Vatican Apostolic Palace at 11 a.m. on Friday 19 February, an ordinary public consistory will be held for the canonisation of the following Blesseds: - Stanislao Soltys, called Kazimierczyk, Polish professed religious of the Order of Canons Regular Lateranense (1433-1489). - Andre Bessette (ne Alfred), Canadian professed religious of the Congregation of the Holy Cross (1845-1937). - Candida Maria de Jesus Cipitria y Barriola (nee Juana Josefa), Spanish founder of the Congregation of the Daughters of Jesus (1845-1912). - Mary of the Cross MacKillop (nee Mary Helen), Australian foundress of the Sisters of St. Joseph of the Sacred Heart (1842-1909). - Giulia Salzano, Italian foundress of the Congregation of Sisters Catechists of the Sacred Heart (1846-1929). - Battista da Varano (nee Camilla), professed nun of the Order of Poor Clares and foundress of the monastery of St. Clare in the Italian town of Camerino (1458-1524).OCL/CONSISTORY CANONISATION/... VIS 100212 (170)

AUDIENCES VATICAN CITY, 12 FEB 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences seven prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Romania, on their "ad limina" visit: - His Beatitude Lucian Muresan, major archbishop of Fagaras and Alba Iulia, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishops Vasile Bizau and Mihai Catalin Fratila. - Bishop Florentin Crihalmeanu of Cluj-Gherla. - Bishop Alexandru Mesian of Lugoj. - Bishop Ioan Sisestean of Maramures. - Bishop Virgil Bercea of Oradea Mare of the RomaniansAL/.../... VIS 100212 (80)



All report: TRAGEDY struck early yesterday on the Fort Portal-Kyenjojo road when Rwenzori Bishop Patrick Kyaligonza died on the spot in a car accident.
The 9:00am crash took place opposite St. Simeon Catholic Church Miranga (Butiiti parish) at Kayihura near Kyenjojo town. Sources said the 46-year-old bishop and his wife Rose Kabahita Mujungu were heading to Kyenyojo for the burial of his aunt. Mujungu fractured her legs, Moses Tembo, theâ-‚chaplain, was critically injured. Both were admitted at Kyenjojo Health Centre IV. The driver, Patrick Isingoma, had minor injuries. Isingoma, still in shock, could not utter a word when asked about the incident.
A boda-boda rider said the bishop's Prado vehicle zigzagged across the road before it rolled over. "The bishop attempted to jump out. He hit his head on the tarmac and died instantly."
The Police said the vehicle burst a rear tyre.
The bishop's body was taken for a postmortem in Fort Portal Hospital.
Kyaligonza was a father of three children aged between 3 and 9. His first anniversary as bishop was due in two weeks.
Kyaligonza was consecrated on February 22, 2009. President Yoweri Museveni attended his consecration at St. John's Cathedral.
Kyaligonza was amongâ-‚Anglican bishops who prayed at State House in Entebbe last weekend.
A somber mood hung over the cathedral, the seat of the diocese, where hundreds of mourners gathered. Some wailed, while others prayed.
"We have lost a great man," said diocesan secretary Patrick Karuhanga.
Prof. Edward Rugumayo said: "He was influential and a strong preacher. He has been the youngest bishop in the Church of Uganda, who was looked at as the next archbishop."
Local government minister Adolf Mwesige said: "He was not only the bishop of the Anglicans but a shepherd of all."
By press time, the programme for burial had not been announced. A sobbing Best Kemigisha, the Queen mother of Toro and sister of the widow, said the bishop was a "key player" in planning the birthday celebrations of King Oyo slated for April 18, the day he is expected to assume the leadershipâ-‚of the kingdom. "I cannot imagine he is gone."(source;


UCAN report — A group of 48 Christian villagers in the southern Laotian province of Saravane are reportedly being held until they recant their faith.
The deputy government leader of Ta-Oyl district reportedly ordered their detention after an incident last month in which 100 district officials raided a Sunday morning worship service in the village of Katin.
Human Rights Watch for Lao Religious Freedom (HRWLRF) and International Christian Concern (ICC) both reported the incident.
In the Jan. 10 raid, the district officials held guns to the Christians’ heads and forced all 48 into a nearby open field where they are said to be still detained. Personal belongings were seized and six of their houses reportedly destroyed.
ICC reports that the group are sleeping on the ground without shelter and with little food.
The agency said the Christians had so far refused to obey the order to renounce their faith.
‘Forced with guns to their heads’
HRWLRF reported that the authorities included the village chief, a religious affairs’ official, three district police and a 15-man volunteer unit.
“While being forced with guns to their heads, the believers took only the personal belongings they could grab,” an HRWLRF statement says.
Local police have been posted outside Katin in order to keep the Christians from returning.
“They are without light, food and clean water, except for a small stream nearby,” the organization reported.
The Katin village leader last year declared that spirit worship is the only acceptable form of worship in the community, HRWLRF reported.
He is said to have confiscated livestock from the Christian villagers and on July 11, 2009, reportedly called a special meeting for all residents and announced that they had “banned the Christian faith in our village.”
Laos is 65 percent Buddhist and 1.5 percent Christian, with about 40,000 Catholics.
Article 6 and Article 30 of the Lao Constitution guarantee the right of Christians and other religious minorities to practice the religion of their choice without discrimination or penalty.(source:


CNA report:
Leaders of the Italian Bishops' Conference expressed their commitment to justice, truth and the good of the Church in response to a media campaign which has been highly critical of the Vatican. In a statement yesterday, the bishops lent their support to the Vatican who remarked on Tuesday that Benedict XVI “deplores” the “unjust and injurious attacks” circulating in the media against the former editor of the Italian Bishops' Conference daily paper.
Dino Boffo resigned from his editorial position of L'Avvenire last fall based on claims from a local Italian paper that he was a “renowned homosexual” and that he had been fined for allegedly harassing the wife of a man he was interested in.
Though the author of the article, Vittorio Feltri of the Il Giornale, later admitted that his assertions were based on false documents, the media frenzy surrounding the scandal has shifted to recent claims by Feltri that the Holy See created the falsified dossier. Those implicated by Feltri include individuals such as the editor of L'Osservatore Romano and the Cardinal Secretary of State.
The Vatican rebuffed these claims in a Tuesday statement, insisting, “These news items and reconstructions have no basis whatsoever in fact.” The statement went on to defend the Church affirming that the good it does must not be compromised by news reports and distortions working to defame the Holy See.
In their statement, the Italian bishops recalled that the Lord gives strength to his Church as they renewed their “efforts to work for the affirmation of truth and justice.”(SOURCE:

CNA report:
A new survey of “Millennials” shows the generation of young Catholic adults to be more pro-life and interested in learning more about their religion. While many are sympathetic to moral relativism and are indifferent to sexual ethics, the head Knight of Columbus said their interest in religious education was an “especially good sign.”
The survey, conducted by the Marist Institute on behalf of the Knights of Columbus, took place from December 23, 2009 to January 4, 2010.
About 85 percent of self-described Catholic Millennials believe in God, compared to 76 percent of the wider population.
Only one in four young Catholics attends religious services at least once a month. While Millennials overall were evenly split on whether people should only practice one religion, Catholics were more likely to approve of practicing more than one religion.
However, about 65 percent of young Catholics were somewhat or very interested in having more education about their religion.
Given the option of saying morals are “fixed and based on unchanging standards,” about 82 percent of young Catholics said that morals are relative. Asked about particular ethical questions, survey respondents often favored saying a topic was “not a moral issue” rather than saying it was morally wrong or acceptable.
Millennial Catholics were evenly split on whether people should have different business and personal ethical standards, though their peers favored more consistency.
While 31 percent of their peers say being spiritual or close to God is a long-term life goal, only 18 percent of Catholics this age named that as their goal. They prioritized getting married and having a family.
Six in ten Millennials oppose abortion, with opposition slightly stronger among Catholics. On embryonic stem cell research, Catholics mirror their peers. About 37 percent said the research is morally acceptable, while only 32 percent said it is wrong.
Catholic Millennials are morally opposed to assisted suicide at a rate somewhat higher than their non-Catholic peers. They were less likely than their peers to say drug use is morally wrong.
On issues of sex and marriage, nine in ten young people say marital infidelity is morally wrong. About 35 percent said divorce is morally wrong and only one in four young Catholics said it is morally acceptable.
Only 20 percent of Catholic Millennials said sexual relations between an unmarried man and woman are wrong, while almost four in ten said they are acceptable.
About 35 percent of young Catholics said homosexual relations are morally wrong, but slightly more said they are acceptable. They showed slightly more opposition to same-sex “marriage,” but less than their peers. Only 28 percent of all Millennials deemed such unions morally acceptable, while 47 percent described them as wrong.
More than one-third of young Catholics see themselves as politically liberal.
“It is very important for the Church to understand the outlook of the next generation of adult Catholics,” said Supreme Knight of Columbus Carl Anderson in comments about the survey report.
“Catholic Millennials support Church teaching in a wide variety of areas, including contentious issues like abortion and euthanasia. In other areas, the cultural relativism that Pope Benedict XVI has spoken so much about is very evident, and it confirms the wisdom of his attention to this question as central to the New Evangelization.”
He said it was “especially good news” to see that so many Catholics want to learn more about their faith.
“The Church has a great opportunity to evangelize, and has much to build on with the next generation of Catholics, but it must act and teach in a way that makes clear the reasons for Church teaching as part of what our Pope has called our 'yes' to Jesus Christ."(source:


Cath News report:
The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) announced the launch of its Facebook page this week, containing information, media releases, photos and forums about the work and ministry of the ACBC.
Anyone can become a "fan" of the page, which the Bishops are describing as a "quick and efficient way of finding information about the Catholic Church in Australia, communicate with the bishops, and to understand how the Conference operates", according to a statement.
Media delegate for the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, Bishop Peter Ingham, said that engaging with Facebook and other new digital media will more effectively share the love of Christ with the people of the world.
"There are so many opportunities now available to us to be at service of the Word of God. Digital media gives us so much more scope to make Jesus Christ better known and loved," said Bishop Ingham.
Director of the Australian Catholic Film Office, Fr Richard Leonard, said that new media is rapidly emerging in society and that the Church should engage with it or become irrelevant.
"The Church is able to participate quite easily with new media, with the help of skilled professionals. In doing so, more than ever before, they have the capacity spread the message of Christ to a wide and varied audience," said Fr Leonard.(source:


St. Saturninus & Companions
Feast: February 12
Feast Day:
February 12

St. Saturninus was, says Tillemont, one of the most illustrious martyrs France has given to the Church. We possess only his Acts, which are very old, since they were utilized by St. Gregory of Tours. He was the first bishop of Toulouse, whither he went during the consulate of Decius and Gratus (250). Whether there were already Christians in the town or his preaching made numerous conversions, he soon had a little church. To reach it he had to pass before the capitol where there was a temple, and according to the Acts, the pagan priests ascribed to his frequent passings the silence of their oracles. One day they seized him and on his unshakable refusal to sacrifice to the idols they condemned him be tied by the feet to a bull which dragged him about the town until the rope broke. Two Christian women piously gathered up the remains and buried them in a deep ditch, that they might not be profaned by the pagans. His successors, Sts. Hilary and Exuperius, gave him more honourable burial. A church was erected where the bull stopped. It still exists, and is called the church of the (the bull). The body of the saint was transferred at an early date and is still preserved in the Church of St. Sernin (or Saturninus), one of the most ancient and beautiful of Southern France. His feast was entered on the Hieronymian Martyrology for 29 November; his cult spread abroad. The account of his Acts was embellished with several details, and legends linked his name with the beginning of the churches of Eauze, Auch, Pamplona, and Amiens, but these are without historic foundations.source:


Mark 7: 31 - 37
Then he returned from the region of Tyre, and went through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, through the region of the Decap'olis.
And they brought to him a man who was deaf and had an impediment in his speech; and they besought him to lay his hand upon him.
And taking him aside from the multitude privately, he put his fingers into his ears, and he spat and touched his tongue;
and looking up to heaven, he sighed, and said to him, "Eph'phatha," that is, "Be opened."
And his ears were opened, his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly.
And he charged them to tell no one; but the more he charged them, the more zealously they proclaimed it.
And they were astonished beyond measure, saying, "He has done all things well; he even makes the deaf hear and the dumb speak."

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