Friday, June 4, 2010
CATHOLIC WORLD NEWS: FRI. JUNE 4, 2010: HEADLINES-
VATICAN: POPE VISITS CYPRUS, CROSSROADS OF CULTURES AND RELIGIONS-
ASIA: BANGLADESH: DAY OF MOURNING FOR VICTIMS OF FIRE-
AMERICA: BRAZIL: NEARLY 5 MILLION GATHER FOR CORPUS CHRISTI PROCESSION-
EUROPE: TURKEY: DRIVER CHARGED WITH MURDER OF BISHOP PADOVESE-
AFRICA: UGANDA: CHOIR ENTERTAINS PILGRIMS FOR MARTYR´S DAY-
AUSTRALIA: CRITICISMS OF BUILDING QUALITY IN SCHOOLS-
POPE VISITS CYPRUS, CROSSROADS OF CULTURES AND RELIGIONS
VATICAN CITY, 4 JUN 2010 (VIS) - Benedict XVI, the first Pope ever to visit Cyprus, landed at the island's Paphos airport at 2 p.m. local time today, thus beginning his sixteenth apostolic trip outside Italy. On arrival he was greeted by Demetris Christofias, president of Cyprus, accompanied by his wife.
Also at the airport to welcome the Holy Father were Archbishop Antonio Franco, apostolic nuncio to Cyprus; Archbishop Joseph Soueif of Cyprus of the Maronites; His Beatitude Fouad Twal, patriarch of Jerusalem of the Latins; Fr. Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Custos of the Holy Land, and His Beatitude Chrysostomos II, Orthodox Patriarch of Cyprus.
Following a greeting from the president of Cyprus, Benedict XVI pronounced a brief address in English.
"Cyprus stands at the crossroads of cultures and religions, of histories both proud and ancient but which still retain a strong and visible impact upon the life of your country", he said. Having recently acceded to the European Union, the Republic of Cyprus is beginning to witness the benefit of closer economic and political ties with other European States. ... It is greatly to be hoped that membership will lead to prosperity at home and that other Europeans in their turn will be enriched by your spiritual and cultural heritage which reflects your historical role, standing between Europe, Asia and Africa. May the love of your homeland and of your families and the desire to live in harmony with your neighbours under the compassionate protection of almighty God, inspire you patiently to resolve the remaining concerns that you share with the international community for the future of your island.
"Following in the footsteps of our common fathers in the faith, Sts. Paul and Barnabas, I have come among you as a pilgrim and the servant of the servants of God", the Pope added. "Since the Apostles brought the Christian message to these shores, Cyprus has been blessed by a resilient Christian heritage. I greet as a brother in that faith His Beatitude Chrysostomos II, archbishop of New Justiniana and All Cyprus, and I look forward shortly to meeting many more members of the Orthodox Church of Cyprus.
"I also look forward to greeting other Cypriot religious leaders. I hope to strengthen our common bonds and to reiterate the need to build up mutual trust and lasting friendship between all those who worship the one God.
"As the Successor of Peter, I come in a special way to greet the Catholics of Cyprus, to confirm them in the faith and to encourage them to be both exemplary Christians and exemplary citizens, and to play a full role in society, to the benefit of both Church and State". The Pope also noted how during his visit he would consign the "Instrumentum laboris" of the forthcoming Special Assembly for the Middle East of the Synod of Bishops, which "will examine many aspects of the Church's presence in the region and the challenges that Catholics face, sometimes in trying circumstances, in living out their communion within the Catholic Church and offering their witness in the service of society and the world.
"Cyprus", he concluded, "is thus an appropriate place in which to launch our Church's reflection on the place of the centuries-old Catholic community in the Middle East, our solidarity with all the Christians of the region and our conviction that they have an irreplaceable role to play in peace and reconciliation among its peoples".
Having completed his address, the Pope moved on to the church of Agia Kiriaki Chrysopolitissa to participate in an ecumenical ceremony.
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ECCLESIAL COMMUNION IS A GIFT AND A SUMMONS TO MISSION
VATICAN CITY, 4 JUN 2010 (VIS) - At 3.15 p.m. today the Holy Father arrived at the church of Agia Kiriaki Chrysopolitissa (St. Ciriaca Chrysopolitissa), an Orthodox place of worship that is also open to Catholics and Anglicans. It was founded in 1987 by His Beatitude Chrysostomos II, archbishop of Cyprus, who was then bishop of Paphos. The church overlooks an archaeological site containing the remains of a fourth-century paleo-Christian basilica and is very near the "Column of St. Paul", an object of popular devotion associated with the Apostle of the Gentile's stay on the island.
On arrival the Pope was greeted by the pastor of the Latin community. Following a moment of silent prayer in the church, he then exited by the central doors to greet the faithful gathered in the archaeological site. His Beatitude Chrysostomos II welcomed the Holy Father who, following a reading from the Acts of the Apostles recounting the first visit to Cyprus of Sts. Barnabas and Paul, pronounced his address.
From this place, said the Holy Father, "the Gospel message began to spread throughout the empire, and the Church, grounded in the apostolic preaching, was able to take root throughout the then-known world.
"The Church in Cyprus can rightly be proud of her direct links to the preaching of Paul, Barnabas and Mark, and her communion in the apostolic faith, a communion which links her to all those Churches who preserve that same rule of faith. This is the communion, real yet imperfect, which already unites us, and which impels us to overcome our divisions and to strive for the restoration of that full visible unity which is the Lord's will for all His followers".
"The Church's communion in the apostolic faith is both a gift and a summons to mission", said the Pope. For this reason all Christians must "bear prophetic witness to the risen Lord and to His Gospel of reconciliation, mercy and peace. In this context, the Special Assembly for the Middle East of the Synod of Bishops ... will reflect on the vital role of Christians in the region, encourage them in their witness to the Gospel, and help foster greater dialogue and co-operation between Christians throughout the region. Significantly, the labours of the Synod will be enriched by the presence of fraternal delegates from other Churches and Christian communities in the region, as a sign of our common commitment to the service of God's word and our openness to the power of His reconciling grace.
"The unity of all Christ's disciples is a gift to be implored from the Father in the hope that it will strengthen the witness to the Gospel in today's world", he added. "Just a hundred years ago, at the Edinburgh Missionary Conference, the acute awareness that divisions between Christians were an obstacle to the spread of the Gospel gave birth to the modern ecumenical movement. Today we can be grateful to the Lord, Who through His Spirit has led us, especially in these last decades, to rediscover the rich apostolic heritage shared by East and West, and in patient and sincere dialogue to find ways of drawing closer to one another, overcoming past controversies, and looking to a better future".
The Holy Father went on: "The Church in Cyprus, which serves as a bridge between East and West, has contributed much to this process of reconciliation. The path leading to the goal of full communion will certainly not be without its difficulties, yet the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church of Cyprus are committed to advancing in the way of dialogue and fraternal co-operation.
"May the Holy Spirit enlighten our minds and strengthen our resolve, so that together we can bring the message of salvation to the men and women of our time, who thirst for the truth that brings authentic freedom and salvation, the truth whose name is Jesus Christ", he concluded.
After praying the Our Father and listening to a Byzantine hymn, the Pope went back into the church where he blessed a plaque that will be placed in a new old people's home being built by the Catholic community of Cyprus. He then travelled by car to Nicosia, the capital city of Cyprus.
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OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
VATICAN CITY, 4 JUN 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father:
- Appointed Bishop Bernard Bober, auxiliary of the archdiocese of Kosice, Slovakia, as metropolitan archbishop of the same archdiocese (area 10,403, population 1,111,132, Catholics 678,170, priests 451, permanent deacons 3, religious 439). The archbishop-elect was born in Zbudske Dlhe, Slovakia in 1950, he was ordained a priest in 1974 and consecrated a bishop in 1993. He succeeds Archbishop Alojz Tkac, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
- Appointed Fr. David M. O'Connell, president of the Catholic University of America in Washington D.C., U.S.A., as coadjutor of Trenton (area 5,580, population 2,048,000, Catholics 822,000, priests 314, permanent deacons 320, religious 510), U.S.A. The bishop-elect was born in Philadelphia, U.S.A. in 1955 and ordained a priest in 1982.
- Appointed Fr. Joseph Son Sam-seok, dean of the faculty of theology at the major seminary of Pusan, Korea, as auxiliary of Pusan (area 3,267, population 5,452,710, Catholics 409,587, priests 289, religious 877). The bishop-elect was born in Pusan in 1955 and ordained a priest in 1982.
On Thursday 3 June, he appointed Bishop Dario de Jesus Monsalve Mejia of Malaga - Soata, Colombia, as coadjutor archbishop of Cali (area 2,504, population 2,692,000, Catholics 2,287,000, priests 325, permanent deacons 17, religious 908), Colombia. The archbishop-elect was born in Jerico, Colombia in 1948, he was ordained a priest in 1976 and consecrated a bishop in 1993.
BANGLADESH: DAY OF MOURNING FOR VICTIMS OF FIRE
Asia News report: The government of Bangladesh has declared Saturday a day of mourning with special prayers for victims of one of the worst fires in Bangladesh’s history in which more than 100 are reported dead.
The death toll is continuing to rise.
Deputy fire chief Abdur Rashid said 93 were confirmed dead while Mohibul Haque, the deputy commissioner of Dhaka, put the toll at 114.
The government requested everyone to hold special prayers at mosques, temples, churches and pagodas, The Daily Star reported.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina visited the injured at the Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) this morning accompanied by Health Minister AFM Ruhal Huq and other officials.
The government has extended financial and other logistics support for the burial of the victims and treatment of the injured.
The government has decided to grant 20,000 taka (US$282) for each victim’s family to meet immediate needs including burial of the dead.
President Zillur Rahman expressed profound shock at the loss of life in the fire. He said today he was praying for the salvation of the departed souls and also for the quick recovery of the injured.
BRAZIL: NEARLY 5 MILLION GATHER FOR CORPUS CHRISTI PROCESSION
Herald Sun report: UP to five million people marched through Sao Paulo overnight in a traditional "March for Jesus" that organisers and media claimed was the biggest Catholic demonstration in the world.
The massive crowd streaming along a freeway in the north of the city accounted for around a quarter of Sao Paulo's population of 20 million, and underlined Brazil's position as the country with the biggest Catholic population on earth.
The event marked Corpus Christi, which falls 60 days after Easter and is celebrated as a national holiday in Brazil.
Organisers said that 630 floats coming from all over the country took part in the multi-denominational march, which was scheduled to last nearly 12 hours.
The Estadao private news agency said up to five million people were expected to participate - much more than the one million who took part last year according to police.
At the same time as the march was happening, an estimated two million cars were streaming out of Sao Paulo as other residents headed to the beach or countryside to enjoy an unofficial four-day long weekend.
IMAGE SOURCE http://www.tenerifemagazine.com/tenerife-uncovered/towns-resorts/street-gardening-%E2%80%93-the-corpus-christi-flower-carpets.htm
TURKEY: DRIVER CHARGED WITH MURDER OF BISHOP PADOVESE
Asia News report: Christian observers and ask that the investigators to delve deeper into the motives for the murder.. Several attacks against Christians in Turkey are the work of "young unbalanced men" The condolences of the Italian Bishops Conference and PIME. The funeral of Mgr. Padovese next week in Milan.
Iskanderun (AsiaNews) - The driver of Mgr. Luigi Padovese, killed yesterday in front of his house in Iskanderun has been formally charged with murder by a Turkish court. The police confirm that the man, who for over four years was a close collaborator of the slain bishop suffers from mental disorders. But some doubts remain surrounding his illness and there have been widespread calls on the authorities to deepen their investigations into the motives for the assassination.
Murat Altun, 26, was arrested yesterday, hours after the killing of the bishop. According to some witnesses the murderer was stilly carrying the knife with which he had butchered Mgr. Padovese. After hours of questioning, the police confirmed the insanity of Murat. AsiaNews sources had said yesterday that Murat was "depressed, violent, full of threats."
But faithful and the Turkish world are still finding it hard to accept the thesis of mental illness, which only became evident a few months ago. Several attacks in recent years were committed by young people deemed "unstable" at the time but who later proved to have connections with ultra-nationalist and anti-Christian groups.
To many observers it seems that governments, politicians, Turkish civil authorities are avoiding all serious analysis of these events. The risk is that these violent episodes will be merely brushed off with the excuse that they are the isolated acts of madmen, the casual gesture of an young Islamic fanatic.
Among the "isolated acts" of unbalanced people are: the wounding of Fr Adriano Franchini, Italian Capuchin, Smyrna on December 16, 2007; Fr. Roberto Ferrari, threatened with a kebab knife in the church in Mersin on 11 March 2006, Fr. Pierre Brunissen stabbed in the side, 2 July 2006 outside his church in Samsun. These three attacks were carried out without fatal consequences.
This was not the case for Don Andrea Santoro, shot and killed Feb. 5, 2006 while praying in church in Trabzon; the same fate for the Armenian journalist Hrant Dink assassinated January 19, 2007 just outside his home in a crowded street in Istanbul. And the even more tragic death April 18, 2007 of three Protestant Christians, including one German, tortured, stabbed and killed while working in the Zirve publishing house in Malatya, which publishes Bibles and Christian books.
Among Christians and some Turkish NGOs is the request that investigations do not stop at the arrest of a deranged turn, but dig deeper.
Meanwhile, church figures are flocking to Iskanderun to express their condolences to the local church. The body of Mgr. Padovese was transferred to hospital in nearby Adana, for an autopsy. According to preliminary information, the funeral of Mgr. Padovese will be held in Milan, his city of birth, not before Wednesday, June 9.
Among the first expressions of condolence – sent to the nuncio in Turkey, Mgr. Antonio Lucibello, are those of the Italian Bishops Conference. A message signed by Card. Angelo Bagnasco, reads: "While we deplore this barbaric murder, we join the pain of the local Church, which still is tried so very hard".
Condolences have also been expressed by priests from the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions (PIME), in whose seminary Mgr. Padovese had been a professor. Fr. Mark Rebolini, who had visited the bishop in Turkey last summer, writes: "It is incredible to think about what happened to him .... a sense of profound sadness lingers in me because martyrdom .. is always a defeat for humanity, but in the logic of God it is a great gesture of love capable of healing many wounds. "
UGANDA: CHOIR ENTERTAINS PILGRIMS FOR MARTYR´S DAY
All Africa report: A Karimojong choir, backed by dancers glittering in traditional attire, added flair to the Martyrs Day celebrations in Namugongo yesterday.
The men and women in white T-shirts, checked skirts, kilts and necklaces, sang passionately to applause from thousands of excited Christians.
Holding sticks, adorned in headgear made of feathers and animal skins, the choir members led a procession of the clergy to a hut before the Mass started. They also led pilgrims as they gave offertory.
Their performance put Matheniko MP Samuel Pirir in a buoyant mood that wowed the congregation. In a frenzy, the MP, wearing a black suit and a shoal, held a stick and a stool in his hands and delivered an awesome Karimojong dance.
The towering Pirir jumped off his seat and pranced about in mock war, while thrusting his spear at an imaginary enemy, including the congregation and the VIPs. At the end of it, he ignored the VIP seats in the tent and sat on the stool.
Security looked on as Pirir entertained the crowd. When First Lady Janet Museveni arrived at about midday, Pirir danced ahead of her as she made for the VIP tent.
The MP's diocese of Moroto organised the annual celebration, which falls on June 3, to remember the 45 Protestant and Catholic converts killed for their faith. Bishop Henry Ssentongo of Moroto led the mass spiced up by songs by the over 100-strong choir.
Thousands of Christians thronged the shrine. Over 3,127 came from Kenya, Tanzania, the US, Burundi, Rwanda, Nigeria and Ethiopia.
Ssentongo, in his homily, urged Christians to defend the family, which he said was under attack from different forces.
"There have been attacks on the Christian family and people of goodwill should defend the cherished family values," he stated.
He asked Christians to ensure peace and stability ahead of the 2011 general elections by being tolerant.
Ssentongo castigated people who practise witchcraft and appealed to the youth to emulate the martyrs, whom he described as heroic.
President Yoweri Museveni, flanked by Janet, asked the clergy to help in the fight against cattle rustling. Museveni had also attended the celebrations at the Protestant shrine.
"Intensify the word against lawlessness. Some people take sacraments, then go and spill the blood of innocent people. We are using the gun to stop them but you should also help us," he stated.
Museveni said if the Church constantly preached against the vice, it would have stopped in southern Sudan, northern and eastern Uganda and north-western Kenya.
He asked the congregation to pray that the former Tanzania President, Julius Nyerere, is declared a saint. Maria Gabriel Malinger, Nyerere's wife, attended.
Before Museveni's arrival, opposition leaders, including Col. Dr. Kizza Besigye of the FDC, walked away. Besigye was joined by DP boss Norbert Mao, Mukono North MP Betty Nambooze and the Leader of Opposition in Parliament, Prof. Ogenga Latigo.
Besigye was overheard murmuring: "We did not come here for Museveni but to attend the celebration of the Uganda Martyrs, who died for the truths".
Among the pilgrims was 84-year-old Earnest Mubiru, a farmer in Kayunga district, said he has attended the celebrations in Namugongo for the last 20 years, together with his family of nine.
"I have been coming here to pray for blessings since 1984. I pray that God keeps my family safe and healthy for many years," he said.
Every January, he starts saving sh100 daily to raise the fare, while his children contribute the rest of the needed money.
He said more pilgrims prayed this year than in the previous ones as he could not find a place to sit.
On his part, 72-year-old Juvenile Kanyegere, a casual labourer from Buwenge in Jinja district, has travelled to Namugongo since 2008.
"I wanted to come every year but my employee would not let me," he said. "I resigned and now I can come every year."
Another pilgrim, Rita Kabasinguzi, 52, a housewife, wore white from head to toe. She said she travelled from Kabarole district on June 2 and spent the night at the Prayer Palace near the Namugongo shrines. It is the third time she has participated. "I feel uplifted spiritually when I come here. If I get transport, l will make it here again next year."
CRITICISMS OF BUILDING QUALITY IN SCHOOLS
Cath News report: The NSW Catholic Block Grant Authority has dismissed claims by NSW Department of Education director General Michael Coutts-Trotter that Catholic schools were getting poorer quality buildings with their stimulus funds.
Mr Coutts-Trotter said that public school projects cost more than those in non-government schools because of the better quality of construction, The Australian reports.
The new public school buildings were designed to last 80 years, Mr Coutts-Trotter claimed, while Catholic buildings were merely "high-quality sheds".
Bill Walsh, who heads the authority handling $1 billion of funds under the government's school building funds scheme, said: "All our buildings are permanent constructions, fully engineered, architect-designed and architect-supervised structures. They will last 80 to 100 years, as long as any building."
"We have received zero complaints from our school principals and zero complaints from our school communities.
"I do not accept any premise we are delivering buildings of lesser quality," he said.
Mr Coutts-Trotter's defence of the inflated cost of public schools projects in NSW, made on ABC radio yesterday morning, follows revelations in The Australian that the total per square metre rates paid by public schools were double that paid by Catholic Schools.
The Australian said it has repeatedly asked the NSW Education Department for details of its quality standards to investigate claims the higher costs relate to the quality of the build. The department has refused to respond.
St. Francis Caracciolo
Feast: June 4
Born: October 13, 1563, Villa Santa Maria, Province of Chieti, Region of Abruzzo, Kingdom of Naplesa
Died: June 4, 1608, Agnone, Province of Isernia, Region of Molise, Kingdom of Italy
Canonized: May 24, 1807, Rome by Pope Pius VII
Major Shrine: Church of Santa Maria di Monteverginella, Naples
Patron of: of the city of Naples, Italy and of Italian cooks
St. Francis Caracciolo as a boy was one of those children whom the world "sets down as unnatural." No doubt we ourselves also had we seen the little Ascanio, by which name he was baptized, eschewing games and "the things of a child," to make constant visits to the Blessed Sacrament and give food and other reliefs to the poor, would have thought it all very "odd," did we not reflect that the "supernatural" does strange things at times and manifests itself in old and young alike, regardless of what people may say or even do! Ascanius, or as we must call him by his name in religion, Francis, Caracciolo, was born at Villa Santa Maria in that quarter of Italy known as the Abruzzi, the very name of which always recalls mental pictures of wild and lonely scenery and picturesque groups of Salvator Rosa-esque brigands! The family of the Saint was noble, being a junior branch of the ancient house. While still a youth, he was attacked by one of the several skin complaints collectively described as "leprosy" in those days, but which in the case of the subject of this memoir was made the means of still further withdrawing him from things of earth and towards those of Heaven. He was cured in consequence, it is said, of a vow to devote his life to the service of God, and with this end in view he went, at the age of about twenty-two, to study for the priesthood at Naples. In the intervals of reading, he busied himself with works of devotion and charity, making long visits to the Blessed Sacrament, and consoling the inmates of hospitals and prisons. He had a special liking for neglected churches, seeking to make up by his attendance and prayers for the absence of worshippers in these uncared-for sanctuaries. After his Ordination in 1587, he joined a pious confraternity, known as the "The White Robes of Justice." This Society, like that of the better-known Misericorde, attended condemned criminals and prepared them to die well. All this time, Francis seems to have had in mind the founding of a new religious Order, and next year the matter came to a head. It happened that the same idea had also occurred to another devout man, Giovanni Agostino Adorno, who unburdened his mind on the subject in a letter addressed to another member of the Caracciolo family, named Fabricius Ascanio. The letter was delivered by a very natural error to our Saint, who saw in the occurrence a clear indication of the divine will. Joining in at once with John Adorno and Fabricius Caracciolo, our Saint and they retired for a while to the desert of Camaldoli, where the holy trio drew up the Rule of what was to be the Minor Clerks Regular. Francis then went to Rome to obtain the approval of the Pope for the new Foundation. Sixtus V was at that time in the midst of his strenuous pontificate, clearing the Papal States of the swarms of brigands which had long made that part of Italy one of the most insecure places in Europe, and in beautifying Rome with those stately public buildings which still reflect the glory of the Sistine rule. The Holy Father with quite unwonted alacrity approved the Congregation on 1st July of the same year (1588).
The new Congregation of the Minor Clerks Regular thus established was one of considerable severity. The Clerks bound themselves to distribute various practices of penance among themselves daily, so that while one fasted, another took the discipline, a third wore the hair-shirt and so on. The rest not so engaged were meanwhile watching in turn before the Blessed Sacrament. In addition to the three usual vows, a fourth was added-not to aspire after dignities (de non ambiendis dignitatibus).
At his solemn profession at Naples, 9th April, 1589, Fr. Caracciolo took the name of Francis, from his great devotion to the holy Founder of the Seraphic Order. Fr. Adorno dying two years later, Fr. Francis, entirely against his own wish, was chosen Superior of the Congregation. He showed himself a model in all that related to the Rule, but quite surpassed all his brethren in the matter of prayer and austerity. He meditated several hours daily on the sufferings of Our Lord, and spent most of the night before the Blessed Sacrament. This he did, among other reasons, to make up as far as he could for the coldness and ingratitude of men, and often, too, the culpable negligence of indifferent ecclesiastics which so frequently caused the churches to be practically abandoned day after day. When kneeling before the altar, the face of Fr. Francis appeared to be lighted up with celestial glory, while he ejaculated from time to time a favourite sentence from the Scripture: "the zeal of Thy house hath eaten me up!" (Ps. lxviii. 10.)
The first house of the Clerks was one at Naples, known as St. Mary Major's, which had been made over to them by Sixtus V, but the expansion of the Congregation soon made it imperative to found others elsewhere. Spain early extended its welcome to the newest arrivals in the monastic field, and St. Francis undertook no fewer than three journeys to that most Catholic country under the special protection first of Philip II and afterwards of his son, Philip III. On one of these voyages, the ship that bore the holy Founder and his fortunes was nearly wrecked, but the vessel was saved by the prayer of our Saint. Of course, there was the opposition of the good to be met and overcome, but the spiritual methods and perseverance of Francis were rewarded by the establishment of three branches-the House of the Holy Ghost at Madrid (20th January, 1599), that of Our Lady of the Annunciation at Valla, closed (9th September, 1601), and St. Joseph at Alcala (1601). This last was opened in the University for the purpose of study and the requirements of the usual academic courses, and many of the aspirants to the Order in Spain spent some years there as part of their preparation for Holy Orders. Before this the Clerks obtained in Rome the Church of St. Leonard afterwards exchanged for that of St. Agnes in the Piazza Navona, the famous Church built on the traditional site of the martyrdom of St. Agnes. It was entirely rebuilt in 1642, at the expense of the Pamfili family, and among the many monuments of artistic or historic interest is the tomb of the Princess Mary Talbot Doria-Pamfili, who died 1857. She was the beautiful daughter of the Sixteenth Earl of Shrewsbury, and one of the Maids of Honour to Queen Victoria at her Coronation in 1838.
In spite of the general knowledge as to the "fourth vow" of the Congregation against accepting or even seeking ecclesiastical honours, many desired to see the Founder exalted to what they considered a wider field of usefulness, and Pope Paul V, who greatly admired the heroic virtues and practical wisdom of Francis, wished to make him a bishop, but desisted at the earnest entreaty of the Saint. Besides his work for the Congregation, Francis unceasingly interested himself in the salvation of souls generally. He was much sought after as a confessor while his exhortations brought to repentance numerous public sinners, and he fortified the wavering and the despondent by personal encouragement and the recommendation of the two great Catholic devotions, those to the Blessed Sacrament and to Our Lady. He had the gift of discerning hearts and of prophecy, and his own approaching death was made known to him one day, when, according to custom, he was praying before the altar of the Church of St. Lauretana. He was at that time in negotiation with the Oratorian Fathers with reference to taking over their house at Agnone in the Abruzzi for the use of his Congregation, and he lost no time in going to that place. Arrived there, he was shortly after seized with fever, and having received all the last rites, he died surrounded by the Oratorian Community of the place on the Vigil of Corpus Christi, 4th June, 1608. His body was removed to the Church of St. Mary Major, Naples, where it remained till it was transferred to the Church of Montivergonella which had been made over to the Clerks Regular, 1893, apparently in exchange for the other seized during the occupation of Naples by the French Revolutionary Army.
The Saint was proclaimed patron of the City of Naples in 1838, but the devotion to him which was once so marked a feature of the spiritual life of the place is said now to be much less in evidence. In addition to the Rule which he drew up in conjunction with his two holy coadjutors, St. Francis Caracciolo also left a devotional treatise on the Passion, this work, apart from the inherent value of the subject, is precious as containing the holy reflections and aspirations of one of the outstanding notabilities of the Church in the last period of the Counter-Reformation—the lover of souls—who did so much to heal by his zeal and piety the wounds which heresy and iniquity had inflicted upon the Mystical Body of the Lord.
Mark 12: 35 - 37
35 And as Jesus taught in the temple, he said, "How can the scribes say that the Christ is the son of David?
36 David himself, inspired by the Holy Spirit, declared, `The Lord said to my Lord, Sit at my right hand, till I put thy enemies under thy feet.'
37 David himself calls him Lord; so how is he his son?" And the great throng heard him gladly.