Monday, February 15, 2010


VIS) - Yesterday evening the Holy Father visited the Major Pontifical Seminary of Rome for the occasion of the feast of its patroness, Our Lady of Trust. The Pope delivered a "lectio divina" in which he reflected on chapter 15 of the Gospel of St. John, focusing particularly on the two words "abide" and "keep". "Meditating on the gift (that God became one with us all and, at the same time, made us one, a vine) we must also begin to pray that this mystery may increasingly penetrate our minds and our hearts, and that we become increasingly capable of seeing and living the greatness of the mystery, and thus begin to fulfil the imperative 'abide'". Referring to the second verb, "keep", Benedict XVI observed that it represents "the second level - the first is that of remaining - of our relationship with God, the ontological level. ... God has already given us His love, the fruit. It is not we who must produce this great fruit, Christianity is not moralism, it is not we who must achieve what God expects from the world; rather, we must first of all enter into the ontological mystery of God's giving of Himself. His being, His love, precede our action and, in the context of His Body, in the context of being in Him and identified with Him, ennobled with His Blood, we too can act with Christ". "The Lord says: 'I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father'. ... The novelty", the Pope explained, "is that God has made Himself known, that God has shown Himself, that God is no longer unknown, sought-after but not found. ... God has allowed Himself to be seen in the face of Christ". Later in his remarks the Holy Father lamented the fact that "today many people still live far from Christ, not knowing His face" and thus renewing "the eternal temptation to dualism". Dualism, he explained, holds that "there is not just one good principle, but also a bad principle, a principle of evil". And yet, he continued, "in the face of the crucified Christ we see God, we see true omnipotence not the myth of omnipotence. ... In Him, true omnipotence means loving to the extreme of suffering for us". In chapter 16 of John's Gospel, the Pope went on, "the Lord offers us the key to understanding the phrase: 'if you ask anything of the Father in my name, He will give it to you'. ... It means joy and if someone has found joy he has found everything and sees everything in the light of divine love". "From God we do not ask anything small or great, from God we invoke the divine gift of He Himself. In this sense that we must learn to pray ... to Him to give us His Spirit, that we may respond to the needs of life and help others in their suffering. ... We must increasingly learn what things we can pray for, and what things we cannot pray for because they express our selfishness ... and pride. Thus, praying before the eyes of God becomes a process of purification of our thoughts and desires. ... Only in this process of slow purification, of liberation from ourselves, ... does the true path of life and joy lie".BXVI-VISIT/.../MAJOR ROMAN SEMINARY VIS 100215 (600)
BIOETHICS: HUMAN DIGNITY AND NATURAL MORAL LAW VATICAN CITY, 13 FEB 2010 (VIS) - This morning the Holy Father received in audience members of the Pontifical Academy for Life, the president of which is Archbishop Rino Fisichella. The academy is currently meeting for its annual plenary assembly. "The problems revolving around the question of bioethics", said the Pope, "bring the anthropological question to the fore"; this concerns "human life in its perennial tension between immanence and transcendence, and has great importance for the culture of future generations". Hence, he went on, "it is necessary to institute a comprehensive educational project which enables these themes to be approached from a positive, balanced and constructive standpoint, especially as regards the relationship between faith and reason. "Bioethical questions often throw light on the dignity of the person, a fundamental principle which faith in Jesus Christ ... has always defended, especially when it is overlooked in dealings with the most simple and defenceless people", he added. "Bioethics, like any other discipline, needs guidelines capable of guaranteeing a coherent reading of the ethical questions which inevitably emerge when faced with possible conflicts of interpretation. In this space lies the normative call to natural moral law". "Recognising human dignity as an inalienable right has its first foundation in that law - unwritten by the hand of man but inscribed by God the Creator in man's heart - which all juridical systems are called to recognise as inviolable, and all individuals to respect and promote. Without the basic principle of human dignity it would be difficult to find a wellspring for the rights of the person, and impossible to reach ethical judgements about those scientific advances which have a direct effect on human life". "When we invoke respect for the dignity of the person, it is fundamental that such respect should be complete, total and unimpeded, ... recognising that we are always dealing with a human life", said Pope Benedict. "Of course, human life has its own development and the research horizon for science and bioethics remains open, but it must be reiterated that when dealing with matters which involve human beings, scientists must never think they are dealing with inanimate and manipulable material. In fact, from its first instant, the life of man is characterised by the fact of being a human life, and for this reason it has, always and everywhere, its own dignity". "Conjugating bioethics and natural moral law is the best way to ensure" recognition for "the dignity that human life intrinsically possesses from its first instant to its natural end". The Pope also highlighted "the commitment that must be shown in the various areas of society and culture in order to ensure that human life is always recognised as an unalienable subject of law, and never as an object dependent on the whims of the powerful". In this context he pointed out that "history has shown how dangerous and damaging a State can be when it proceeds to make laws that touch the person and society, while itself claiming to be the source and principle of ethics". "Natural moral law", the Holy Father concluded, "is a guarantee for legislators to show true respect both for the person and for the entire order of creation. It is the catalysing source of consensus among peoples from different cultures and religions, enabling differences to be overcome by affirming the existence of an order imprinted into nature by the Creator, ... an authentic call to use ethical-rational judgement to seek good and avoid evil".AC/BIOETHICS/ACAD-V VIS 100215 (590)
MEETING OF HOLY SEE - ISRAEL WORKING COMMISSION VATICAN CITY, 13 FEB 2010 (VIS) - The Bilateral Permanent Working Commission between the Holy See and the State of Israel met on 10 February to continue its work on an agreement pursuant to article 10 para. 2 of the Fundamental Agreement of 30 December 1993. According to a communique on the event, "the talks were purposeful and held in an atmosphere of great cordiality". The next meeting is scheduled to take place on 18 March.OP/MEETING/HOLY SEE:ISRAEL VIS 100215 (90)
AUDIENCES VATICAN CITY, 13 FEB 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences: - Cardinal William Joseph Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. - Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops. - Two prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Romania, on their "ad limina" visit: - Bishop Martin Roos of Timisoara. - Bishop Anton Cosa of Chisinau. - Cardinal Ivan Dias, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples.AP:AL/.../... VIS 100215 (90)
THE CHURCH RECOGNISES THE FACE OF JESUS IN THE POOR VATICAN CITY, 14 FEB 2010 (VIS) - This morning Benedict XVI visited a shelter run by Roman diocesan Caritas at the city's main railway station, Termini. The shelter, founded twenty-three years ago to assist the poor and marginalised, has rooms, a canteen and a small medical centre. Addressing the occupants of the shelter, the Pope said "know that the Church loves you deeply and will not abandon you, because it recognises the countenance of Christ in each of you". "The witness of charity, which finds special expression in this place, belongs to the mission of the Church together with the proclamation of the Gospel. Man does not only need to be fed materially or helped to overcome moments of difficulty, but also needs to know who he is, the truth about himself and his dignity". The Holy Father explained how "the Church, with her service to the poor, is therefore committed to the universal announcement of the truth about man, who is loved by God and created in His image, redeemed by Christ and called to eternal communion with Him. Many people have thus been able to rediscover, and are rediscovering, their dignity, sometimes lost in tragic events, and to recover confidence in themselves and hope in the future". The profound certainty of being loved by God "generates in man's heart a powerful, solid, luminous hope, a hope that gives people the courage to continue on the journey of life despite the failures, difficulties and trials that accompany it". The Pope then mentioned the fact that his visit to the shelter was taking place during the European Year for Combating Poverty and Social Exclusion, called by the European Parliament and Commission. In this context he encouraged "not only Catholics, but all men and women of good will, especially those who have responsibility in public administration and in other institutions, to commit themselves to the building of a future worthy of man, rediscovering in charity the driving force for authentic development and for the creation of a more just and fraternal society". "In order to promote peaceful coexistence that helps men recognise themselves as members of one human family it is important that the dimensions of gift and gratuity be rediscovered as constitutive elements of daily life and interpersonal relations", he said. "This is becoming daily more urgent in a world in which the logic of profit and pursuit of one's own interests seem to prevail instead". Voluntary work, as it is experienced in the shelter, said Benedict XVI, "is, especially for the young, an authentic school in which to learn how to build a civilisation of love, one capable of welcoming others in all their uniqueness and difference". "In her service to persons in difficulty the Church is wholly moved by the desire to express her faith in the God Who defends the poor and loves every man for what he is and not for that which he possesses or achieves", the Pope concluded. At the end of the visit the occupants and volunteer workers of Roman diocesan Caritas presented the Holy Father with the restored crucifix from the church of St. Peter in Onna, the village most affected by last April's earthquake in the Italian region of Abruzzo. The Pope will return the crucifix to the church when restoration work there is complete.BXVI-VISIT/CARITAS SHELTER/ROME VIS 100215 (570)
JUSTICE OF GOD: THE POOR ADMITTED TO THE BANQUET OF LIFE VATICAN CITY, 14 FEB 2010 (VIS) - At midday today, having completed his morning visit to a shelter for the poor run by Roman diocesan Caritas, the Holy Father appeared at the window of his study to pray the Angelus with faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square. Commenting on the Sermon on the Mount, one of the themes of today's liturgy, the Pope explained how "the Beatitudes are rooted in the fact that divine justice exists, exalting those who have been wrongly humiliated and humbling those who have exalted themselves. ... This justice, this Beatitude, will be realised in the Kingdom or Heaven, the Kingdom of God, which comes at the end of time but which is already present in history. "Wherever the poor are consoled and admitted to the banquet of life", he added, "there the justice of God is already manifest. This is the task the Lord's disciples are called to undertake in modern society", he said, mentioning the Caritas shelter he had visited that morning and praising "people who, all over the world, gratuitously dedicate themselves to such works of justice and love". Returning then to the question of justice, theme of his Message for Lent 2010, the Pope observed that "Christ's Gospel responds positively to man's thirst for justice, but in an unexpected and surprising way. Christ does not propose a social or political revolution, but a revolution of love which he has already achieved with His cross and His resurrection. It is upon these that the Beatitudes rest, opening a new horizon of justice". After praying the Angelus, Benedict XVI greeted certain Asian communities, such as the Vietnamese and Chinese, who are currently celebrating their New Year. "These are days of festivity, which those peoples experience as a special moment to strengthen family and generational ties", he said. "My hope is that they may all maintain and augment the rich heritage of spiritual and moral values which are deeply rooted in their culture". Turning then to greet Polish faithful, the Pope recalled the fact that today marks the Feast of Sts. Cyril and Methodius, patron saints of Europe. "The values they disseminated in our continent - the sign of the cross, the Gospel of Christ and a life lived according to the Gospel - remain the solid foundation for the spiritual strength of European people and European unity. They are important values for us too in the modern age", he concluded.ANG/BEATITUDES/... VIS 100215 (420)
HOLY FATHER MEETS WITH IRISH BISHOPS VATICAN CITY, 15 FEB 2010 (VIS) - During the course of the day the Holy Father is meeting with prelates of the Irish Episcopal Conference in the Bologna Hall of the Vatican Apostolic Palace. The meeting began this morning at 9.30 a.m. and is scheduled to conclude at 7 p.m..../.../... VIS 100215 (60)
OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS VATICAN CITY, 15 FEB 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Fr. Jude Arogundade of the clergy of Ondo, Nigeria, administrator of the parish of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Elmsford, New York, U.S.A., as bishop of Ondo (area 15,518, population 4,403,000, Catholics 214,000, priests 87, religious 68). The bishop-elect was born in Oka-Akoko, Nigeria in 1961 and ordained a priest in 1990. On Saturday 13 February it was made public that he: - Appointed Bishop Mario Meini of Pitigliano-Sovana-Orbetello, Italy, as bishop of Fiesole (area 1,300, population 140,600, Catholics 135,600, priests 257, permanent deacons 15, religious 490), Italy. He succeeds Bishop Luciano Giovannetti, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit. - Appointed Msgr. Eugene Martin Nugent, nunciature counsellor, as apostolic nuncio to Madagascar and apostolic delegate to Comoros with functions as apostolic delegate to Reunion, at the same time elevating him to the dignity of archbishop. The archbishop-elect was born in County Clare, Ireland in 1958 and ordained a priest in 1983. - Appointed Fr. Paolo Mancini, pastor of the parish of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ in Rome, as prelate secretary of the Vicariate of Rome. - Appointed Bishop Dominik Duka O.P. of Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic, as archbishop of Prague (area 8,990, population 2,045,957, Catholics 370,111, priests 339, permanent deacons 29, religious 578), Czech Republic. The archbishop-elect was born in Hradce Kralove in 1943, he was ordained a priest in 1970 and consecrated a bishop in 1998. He succeeds Cardinal Miloslav Vlk, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.NER:RE:NN:NA/.../... VIS 100215 (290)

CNA report:
In a Sunday afternoon media briefing at the Irish College in Rome, Bishop of Clogher Joseph Duffy, chair of the communications commission of the Irish Bishops’ Conference, revealed details of this week’s meetings with the Pope and members of Vatican congregations. He emphasized that survivors are the “top priority” of the discussions.Bishop Duffy said the summit will not be a “cosmetic exercise” and reported that Irish bishops will be encouraged to speak frankly.“
Following the publication of the Murphy Report, the Holy Father has, due to the very serious situation which prevails in the Church in Ireland, called individual bishops to Rome,” stated Bishop Duffy at the briefing.He indicated that it was important that Benedict XVI had invited the prelates not as a conference, but as individuals.The bishop reported that over Monday and Tuesday, 24 bishops from Ireland will be meeting with the Holy Father and high-ranking members of the pontifical congregations. There will be three total meetings over the two-day period.Each of the bishops will have the floor with Pope Benedict for seven minutes. Cardinal Sean Brady, primate of all Ireland, will be the first of the Irish delegation to speak.In the meetings, said Bishop Duffy, the group will examine problems and “consider an approach that will help to give assurance to families and restore confidence and serenity to the clergy and the faithful.”Having consulted with survivors, clergy, religious and lay faithful in their dioceses in recent weeks, each bishop will use the time he has with the Pope and the prefects of the various congregations to “speak from his own experience.”Bishop Duffy said that victims of abuse will be “at the top of the list of priorities.” He emphasized that when they speak to the Holy Father “the very first concern has to be the question of survivors and the enormous injustice and cruelty that they have suffered, and we must never lose sight of that as a priority.”“Each of us will speak to the Holy Father personally and we have been encouraged to speak in a frank, open way,” added the bishop.The entire summit would be "a flop,” he said, if the bishops were to leave out important details or “if this was to be seen simply as a formality or some kind of a glossing over (of) the difficult parts. It’s meant to be frank and open, and if it’s not either of those it will not have succeeded.”The challenge is in the bishops’ hands to make their cases a strongly as possible, Bishop Duffy commented. He added that the bishops would let Pope Benedict down “if we didn’t say what was on our mind… and that’s the whole point of the exercise.”Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone will attend the meeting as will members of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Congregation for Bishops, the Congregation for the Clergy, the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, the Congregation for Catholic Education, and the Pontifical Council for the Integration of Legislative Texts.A full press conference will take place on Tuesday at the conclusion of the meeting with the Holy Father to conclude at 1 p.m. on that day to allow time for the bishops to return to their dioceses for Ash Wednesday celebrations.Bishop Duffy assured the Sunday media briefing that a pastoral letter will come about “in due course” from the Holy Father, after he has heard the bishops’ accounts and has had time to consider what they had to say.“Otherwise, it wouldn’t be taken fully seriously… this is not just a cosmetic exercise as some people might seem to think, it’s very serious,” he remarked.“The fullness of truth must come out,” he said, “everything must be laid on the table.”
CNA report: Apostolic Nuncio to Haiti, Archbishop Bernardito Auza, hosted a meeting last week for Caritas affiliates in Port-au-Prince to examine relief operations and long-term challenges in the devastated country.
The meeting, which looked at areas such as education, agriculture, reconstruction and disaster preparation, came as the Haitian Government declared four days of prayer to mark one month since the devastating earthquake on Janaury 12, the Catholic News Agency reports.
"We must help Haitians become self-sufficient. Haiti needs more structured support," the archbishop said. "However, I look to the future with confidence."
Also at the meeting were Caritas Internationalis Secretary General Lesley-Anne Knight, Caritas Latin America and Caribbean President Bishop Fernando Bargallo, Caritas Haiti's diocesan directors, and representatives from Caritas organizations from around the world.
"Caritas is committed to not just rebuilding destroyed infrastructure but also to securing the dignity and sustainable development of all Haitians," Lesley-Anne Knight explained.
Caritas has provided food to over 200,000 people, medical supplies to 10,000, and other essential aid items to over 60,000. Partner organisation Catholic Relief Services has distributed U.N. World Food Program rice to almost 200,000 people and hopes to complete its special distribution to another 57,000 this week, the report said.
Meanwhile, the United Nations is reaching out to Haiti's 60,000 voodoo priests in a bid to enlist their services to help count the dead, tend to the injured, and soothe the psychologically damaged, according to the Boston Globe.
"One must understand that Haiti is voodoo," said Max Beauvoir, 75, the "pope" of Haitian voodoo and a former biochemical engineer who once worked for Digital Equipment in Massachusetts, USA. "Helping Haitians is nothing else but helping ourselves."
The UN has reached out to the vast and influential network of about 60,000 voodoo priests in Haiti, Beauvoir said, who are eager to lend a hand, the Globe reported.
CISA report: The Cardinal prefect in charge of Catholic Education, Zenon Cardinal Grocholeswki has challenged institutions of learning to go beyond mere education and instead, offer holistic formation of the students that go through their institutions. The Cardinal was speaking during the silver jubilee of CUEA during which the University honoured him and five other eminent personalities for their contribution to the course of evangelization and human development.Zenon, who received an honorary degree in Sacred Theology with a specialization in Christian Education, maintained that “True scientific education requires sound grounding in ethics. Mere education without proper moral grounding results in horrendous consequences, among them, the evil we have seen perpetrated in the world in the form of terrorist activities among others.”Zenon insisted that while the pursuit of science is commendable, science alone cannot answer the fundamental questions of life and as such, the pursuit of scientific learning should be undertaken while stimulating the reflections on deeper human concerns that perennially plague the human mind. Making numerous references to the apostolic constitution on Catholic higher education that describes the identity and mission of Catholic colleges and universities, (“Ex Corde Ecllessiae”), the Cardinal made it clear that the role of the university should include the study of humanism that contributes to the development of man. “As a Catholic institution, CUEA, while imparting education should strive to search for the truth, the dignity of man and good of the church,” said the Cardinal.The University also honoured Prof. Anna Kajumulo Tibaijuka, the Executive Director of UN Habitat with an honorary degree, in social justice and human development and Rt. Rev Medardo Joseph Mazombwe, archbishop emeritus of Lusaka with Sacred Theology with a specialization in Church and Development. Others so honoured were; Bishop Paul Kalanda, Bishop Emeritus of Fort Portal with Sacred Theology with a specialization in Culture, Mission and Evangelization and Lady Justice Anastasia Msosa with Social Sciences with specialization in Social Justice and Christian Ethics. Fr. Cecil MacGarry was honoured post homously with an honorary degree in Sacred Theology with specialization in Christian Education. The celebrations of 25 years of service to the Church and society were also attended by Kenyan assistant minister for Higher Education who hailed the Catholic Church for the good work as a development partner in the country.
Asia News report: In the attack in Pune on 13 February, 9 people died, including an Italian and an Iranian. Among the 60 wounded, there are 12 foreigners. Indian politicians are divided and the BJP is trying to block dialogue with Pakistan. Bishop Dabre, bishop of the city, stresses that the "victim" of terrorism is, foremost, coexistence of different religions and cultures and this requires the cooperation between people of different faiths and traditions.
Pune (AsiaNews) - At least 9 people were killed and about 60 were wounded in a terrorist attack on the German Bakery, a popular restaurant in Koregaon Park in Pune. Among the dead were an Italian and an Iranian. Even among the wounded, there are 12 foreigners, Pune being a cosmopolitan city.
The explosion is the major incident after the terrorist attack in Mumbai in November 2008. The German Bakery is near a Hindu mystic centre, Osho Ashram and close to Chabad, a centre of the Lubavitch Jewish Orthodox movement. Some members of the Lubavitch were targets of the attack in Mumbai in 2008.
So far no group has claimed responsibility for the attack. But the opposition party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has indirectly blamed Pakistan, demanding that the government in New Delhi once again blocks dialogue with Islamabad. The progress of the difficult relations between India and Pakistan were halted after the attack in Mumbai. They were to resume with a meeting scheduled next February 25. But the Congress Party, which leads the ruling coalition, ruled out the reference of the talks between New Delhi and Islamabad.
Prime Minister of Pakistan, Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani, condemned the attack and reaffirmed the desire to improve relations between the two neighbours. In a comment to AsiaNews, Mgr. Thomas Dabre, Bishop of Pune, said that "terrorism attacks and injures people of different religions and cultures. For this reason it is even more necessary for all believers in God to unite and work together to ensure a society free from terrorism, where people can live in peace, justice, dignity and happiness". Bishop Dabre, who is a member of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, has also expressed his condolences and prayers to the families of the victims. Here is what he told us:
In the diocese of Pune we were shocked by the explosion which took place just 3 km from the cathedral in Pune.
I offer my deepest condolences to the relatives and friends of the victims of this attack that killed 9 people and injured about 60, causing much damage to buildings. May the Lord bless the dead, with eternal life, give healing to the wounded and provide comfort and strength to the relatives and friends. The victims were all young, promising students and employees who were enjoying a little relaxation in the restaurant. The bomb destroyed their lives.
Religious leaders must work together to put an end to terrorism.
Terrorism has become increasingly popular in the world and now has also struck these innocent lives in this historic city, known for its cultural and religious harmony and its integration. Pune has played a key role in the history of the movement for Indian independence and has a special significance today because it is emerging as one of the centres of development for information technology.
The incident on Saturday has hit the entire city, with its cosmopolitan population of 6 million people, from all over India and many parts of the world. This incident is further proof that terrorism has no morality, that human beings are losing the sense of justice because innocent lives are sentenced to death and destruction.
The spirit of forgiveness is disappearing, and revenge, retaliation, foolish assertion of rights and demands are imposed so stubbornly on others, without any distinction between guilty and innocent.
The message of Jesus Christ of love, forgiveness, justice and peace, along with a spirit of sacrifice for each other becomes more important and urgent: we can not be overcome by pessimism in the face of terrorism.
Terrorism challenge religions and cultures to work together to spread a universal morality in the minds and hearts. In particular, religious leaders must convey the importance of morality, justice and peace as a sign of faith in God and true spirituality.
Terrorism attacks and injures people of different religions and cultures. For this reason it is even more necessary for all believers in God to unite and work together to ensure a society free from terrorism, where people can live in peace, justice, dignity and happiness. I believe that the religions of the world with politicians, intellectuals, scientists and the world leaders must have an effective role to put an end to this senseless, irresponsible and immoral terror.;-religions-must-fight-it-together-17626.html

Cath News report: Decorated military chaplain and former video game executive Father Jack McLain has been appointed rector of St Ignatius' College in Athelstone, South Australia.
The US-born Fr McLain, 46, takes over from Father Paul Mullins, who has left after 24 years to become Parish Priest at St Ignatius' Church at Norwood, SA, according to a media statement.
Fr McLain's background includes a remarkable US military career spanning more than two decades, during which he completed postings to war-ravaged regions including Afghanistan, Kosovo and West Africa.
Before that, he pursued an interest in video game software, working for Nintendo, where he helped develop the globally-acclaimed Super Mario Bros 3.
Fr McLain was ordained a Jesuit Priest in 1998. He holds a theology degree at Boston College and attended Harvard University, Massachusetts, where he coached the ski team. He has also completed Bachelor degrees in philosophy, as well as radio and television broadcasting production.
His education experience comprises roles with several American Jesuit high schools and most recently at St Aloysius College in Sydney.
"St Ignatius' College provides a first-class Jesuit Catholic education with an emphasison developing caring, well-rounded people," Fr McLain said.
"I'm looking forward to helping students develop their unique talents as they continue their journey to become men and women of competence, conscience and compassion." (SOURCE:


St. Claude de la Colombiere
Feast: February 15
Feast Day:
February 14
2 February 1641 at Saint-Symphorien d’Ozon, Rhône, France
15 February 1682 at Paray-le-Monial, Saône-et-Loire, France
31 May 1992 by Pope John Paul II in Rome
Major Shrine:
Monastery of the Visitation nuns at Paray-le-Monial
Patron of:
toy makers, turners

Claude de la Colombiere is best known for his association with St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and the devotion of the Sacred Heart, but his life has its own drama. He was sent to England after his spiritual direction of St. Margaret Mary was over and became embroiled in the Titus Oates "Popish Plot," was imprisoned, then banished from England. His story is part of the history of the seventeenth century. He was born near Lyons in 1641 and entered the Society of Jesus at Avignon. After his novitiate, he taught grammar and the humanities. Even before his ordination to the priesthood, he gained a reputation as a preacher. After completing his studies in Paris, he became tutor to the sons of Colbert, the financial minister of Louis XIV, but was dismissed from his post and returned to Avignon.
In 1675, after his solemn profession as a Jesuit, he was appointed superior at Paray-le-Monial, in which the convent of St. Margaret Mary was located. Here he became her spiritual director, encouraged her in the spread of the devotion to the Sacred Heart, and was described by our Lord as His "faithful and perfect friend."
Because of his remarkable gifts and judgment, he was sent to England, to be court preacher to the duchess of York, wife of the future James II, and took up residence in London. His radiant personality and splendid gifts were noted by everyone. When the alleged "Popish Plot" to assassinate King Charles II shook the country, Blessed Claude was accused of complicity in the plot and imprisoned. Through the intervention of Louis XIV of France, he was released, then banished from the country. He spent his last years at Paray-le-Monial, his health broken.
He died on February 15, 1682, an apostle of the devotion to the Sacred Heart, and was beatified in 1929.
Thought for the Day: Blessed Claude was an amazingly gifted man, and he recognized that his gifts should be put at the service of others. He spent himself in the service of Christ and was chosen to direct someone with an important mission to the Church. Let us emulate Claude and place our gifts at the service of others.
From 'The Catholic One Year Bible': . . . "Come, follow me! And I will make you fishermen for the souls of men!" At once they left their nets and went along with him.-Mark 1:17-18

Mark 8: 11 - 13
The Pharisees came and began to argue with him, seeking from him a sign from heaven, to test him.
And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and said, "Why does this generation seek a sign? Truly, I say to you, no sign shall be given to this generation."
And he left them, and getting into the boat again he departed to the other side.

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