Tuesday, September 7, 2010
CATHOLIC WORLD NEWS: TUES. SEPT. 7, 2010: HEADLINES-
VATICAN: STATS FOR CHURCH IN BRITAIN AND POPE ACCEPTS RESIGNATION-
AFRICA: KENYA: 7TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE DEATH OF CARDINAL OTUNAGA-
EUROPE: ITALY: GENERAL CHAPTER OF OBLATES OF MARY FOCUS ON CONVERSION-
AMERICA: USA: GIRL WHO CONVERTED FROM ISLAM RECEIVES RESIDENCY-
ASIA: PHILIPPINES: PEACE NEGOTIATIONS BETWEEN MUSLIMS AND CATHOLICS-
AUSTRALIA: JESUS CHRIST THE ECONFERENCE: SEPT. 16-
STATISTICS FOR THE CATHOLIC CHURCH IN GREAT BRITAIN
VATICAN CITY, 7 SEP 2010 (VIS REPORT) - For the occasion of Benedict XVI's forthcoming apostolic trip to the United Kingdom, due to take place from 12 to 15 September and during which he will beatify Cardinal John Henry Newman, statistics concerning the Catholic Church in that country have been published. The information, updated to 31 December 2009, comes from the Central Statistical Office of the Church.
Great Britain has a surface area of 230,762 square kilometres and a population of 59,381,000 of whom 5,264,000 (8.87 percent) are Catholic. There are 32 ecclesiastical circumscriptions and 2,977 parishes. Currently there are 59 bishops, 5,225 priests, 6,497 religious, 160 lay members of secular institutes and 34,669 catechists. Minor seminarians number 2, and major seminarians 245.
A total of 806,334 children and young people attend 2,828 centres of Catholic education, from kindergartens to universities. Other institutions belonging to the Church, or run by priests or religious in Great Britain include 8 hospitals, 1 clinic, 171 homes for the elderly or disabled, 79 orphanages and nurseries, 94 family counselling centres and other pro-life centres, 147 centres for education and social rehabilitation, and 31 institutions of other kinds.
OP/ VIS 20100907 (200)
OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
VATICAN CITY, 7 SEP 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the archieparchy of Homs, Emesa of the Greek-Melkites, Syria, presented by Archbishop Isidore Battikha B.A., in accordance with canon 210 para. 1 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.
AFRICA: KENYA: CATHOLICS MARK THE 7TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE DEATH OF CARDINAL OTUNAGA
ALL AFRICA REPORT: Catholics have marked the 7th anniversary of the death of the late Maurice Cardinal Otunga, who passed on September 6, 2003 at the age of 80 and after having pursued his pastoral service for more than fifty years.
The colourful memorial service was held at Nairobi's Holy Family Minor Basilica and presided over by the Apostolic Nuncio to Kenya, Archbishop Alain Paul Lebeaupin. A huge congregation including the clergy, religious men and women, as well as family members of the late Cardinal Otunga, attended the occasion.
Also in attendance were Archbishop emeritus Ndingi Mwana a'Nzeki and Auxiliary Bishop David Kamau of the metropolitan archdiocese of Nairobi.
In his sermon, Archbishop Lebeupin urged the gathering to pray hard for the soul of the late Cardinal, and in particular now that a process to have him beatified has been accepted by the Vatican.
He described the late Cardinal Otunga as one who had lived his religious life to the fullest.
"His preoccupation was not just his personal spiritual future but he wanted that through him God be recognized as a Father who loves us in spite of our failures," stressed the Apostolic Nuncio.
"Each of us without exception today and where we are living and working, we have a mission to be instrumental of the love of God," he further told the huge congregation.
He added that the late Cardinal Otunga carried his own Cross just as Christ carried His Cross.
"The Cross of Christ is not just the sufferings of His body, but His Cross is also the sufferings for the salvation of humankind," the Apostolic Nuncio pointed out.
"Our Cross is to be with Christ in His mission and in this collaboration the first thing we have to do it is to convert and to change our life being dedicated to the mission of salvation," he further stressed.
And addressing journalists after the memorial service, Postulator of Cardinal Otunga's process, Fr Anthony Bellagamba said the process was at its second stage, where the committee is studying written works of as well as on the late Cardinal Otunga.
"We have covered the first stage, where the Vatican has accepted the late Cardinal Otunga as Servant of God," he explained.
The late Cardinal Otunga was ordained a priest in 1950 and consecrated at bishop in 1957. He was appointed archbishop of Nairobi archdiocese in 1969 and created a Cardinal by the late Pope Paul VI in 1971.
EUROPE: ITALY: GENERAL CHAPTER OF OBLATES OF MARY FOCUS ON CONVERSION
Agenzia Fides REPORT – On Wednesday, September 8, the XXXV General Chapter of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI) will open in Rome, to focus on conversion. As the outgoing Superior General, Fr. William Steckling, who has led the Oblates for 12 years, writes in his report on the situation of the Congregation, (online at http://www.omiworld.org/ ), “Our Chapter theme is, surprisingly, not mission but conversion. Centered on the person of Jesus Christ, we commit ourselves to a profound personal and communal conversion for the sake of our Oblate Mission. Our precapitular process was guided by the motto 'Conversion: A new heart - a new spirit - a new mission.'” It was the 2007 Interchapter meeting in South Africa that identified this theme, says Fr. Steckling. The Congregation saw a growing consensus on our identity as missionary Oblates. “The one missing element was a change of heart. Intellectually and theoretically we may often be clear about concepts and ideals, models and action paths, but the heart is not fully engaged. We realized that our whole life style as missionaries had to change so that we could live together more harmoniously, be more consistent in prayer and reflection, and then cross the borders to witness to Jesus Christ to the poorest and most abandoned in more creative ways. In the Chapter, with St. Eugene, we should explicitly unite conversion to the missionary needs of today.”
The General Chapter will last four weeks, ending on October 8, and will take place in Rome's Casa La Salle. It will be attended by 89 Oblates, including members of right and elected members, from: Africa-Madagascar (17), Asia - Oceania (14), Canada-United States (15), Latin America (11), Europe (20). In addition to these are the members of the General Government (12).
The Chapter will focus on developing guidelines that are applicable internationally and can help to embody the religious missionary life in concrete cultural contexts. Moreover, among the main issues are the structural adjustments "in a changing world and a changed Congregation," the election of the new Superior General and his Council, the discussion on some changes in the Constitutions and Rules in order to better respond the present reality, and the situation of temporal goods.
The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate - founded by the French Saint Eugene de Mazenod (1782-1861) - are currently 4,354 in 1,083 communities throughout the five continents. Their motto is: "He has sent me to bring the Good News to the poor," which they carry out through all the different aspects of the mission: first evangelization, the new evangelization, interreligious dialogue, reconciliation, justice and peace ...
AMERICA: USA: GIRL WHO CONVERTED FROM ISLAM RECEIVES PERMANENT RESIDENCY
CNN REPORT -- A runaway who said her father threatened to kill her for converting to Christianity from Islam has been granted permanent residency in the United States, her lawyer told CNN on Tuesday.
Bary had said in court that she could not reunite with her parents and needed permission to live in the United States.
"I can confirm that she got her legal permanent residency status, and in five years she can actually become a citizen," said Kort Gatterdam, Bary's attorney. "She is still making plans about her future with those who care about her most. With the case being over only a couple of weeks ago, she hasn't had a chance to sit back and decide what she wants to do with her future yet."
Gatterdam said that Bary has not been in contact with any family members and that she is still afraid of them.
Bary was returned to Ohio from Florida late last year, and as a 17-year-old, she was placed in the custody of Franklin County Children Services while other issues in the case were being settled.
In an earlier court filing, Bary had alleged that her father had said, "If you have this Jesus in your heart, you are dead to me!" She says her father then added, "I will kill you!"
Mohamed Bary, her father, denies the allegation.
"We wouldn't do her harm," he has said, adding that he knew his daughter was involved with Christian organizations. "I have no problem with her practicing any faith," Bary added, but acknowledged he would prefer that she practice Islam.
A report by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement cleared Bary's parents of any criminal wrongdoing.
ASIA: PHILIPPINES: PEACE NEGOTIATIONS BETWEEN MUSLIMS AND CATHOLICS
UCAN report: Peace negotiations between the government and Muslim rebels expected to resume after Ramadan have raised hopes of success among Catholic bishops in the southern Philippines.
He suggested, however, that the government include representatives of tribal communities and other sectors in Mindanao in the advisory panel that President Benigno Aquino III plans to form for the peace process.
“It is wise to include indigenous peoples in Mindanao because they are also affected by the conflict” on Mindanao and Sulu group of islands in the south, Bishop Bagaforo said. Those who will sit in the advisory body should come from “contested and conflict areas” in the region.
In Cagayan de Oro City, north of Cotabato, Archbishop Antonio Ledesma has entered into a partnership with the Philippine Army and a non-government organization to promote a “culture of peace.”
“Peace transcends boundaries. All our efforts of peace-building should go beyond religion, culture and status,” Archbishop Ledesma said in a statement posted on the website of the Catholic bishops’ conference.
He said the archdiocese will work with the military and the NGO Balay Mindanaw Foundation Inc. to synchronize efforts “to promote and build lasting peace in Mindanao.”
Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) formed in the 1970s to fight for the establishment of an Islamic state in a claimed Moro (Philippine Muslim) homeland, has been engaged in on-and-off peace talks with government since 1997.
Formal negotiations last stalled in 2008 when rogue MILF commanders allegedly launched attacks across Mindanao after the Supreme Court ruled a proposed deal they wanted signed was unconstitutional.
On Tuesday MILF called on the government to hold back military activities in ceasefire areas as Ramadan ends around Aug. 10.
“We appealed to the government not to conduct military activities, as much as possible, all over Mindanao… as the Islamic faithful in the area are going to intensify their religious activities in the remaining days of Ramadan,” said Said Sheikh, chairman of the MILF Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities.
Aquino has declared this Friday to allow Filipino Muslims, including guerillas, to prepare for and celebrate Id al-Fitr marking the end of Ramadan
AUSTRALIA: JESUS CHRIST THE ECONFERENCE: SEPT. 16
Speaker Father Gerald O'Collins SJ "will engage the audience as he shares his insights into the life and ministry of Christ", said a statement.
Fr O'Collins is author and co-author of over 55 titles, including Living Vatican II, Catholicism Easter Faith: Believing in the Risen Jesus and Experiencing Jesus.
He has written for professional journals and is a regular contributor to TV and radio, said the statement about the eConference. The free webcast can be accessed in a venue with internet connection and a computer, data projector, a screen and a set of speakers. The session will include discussion time and an opportunity to email questions to the presenter in real-time.
TODAY'S SAINT: ST. ANASTASIUS
St. Anastasius the Fuller
MARTYR AND HERMIT
Feast: September 7
Information: Feast Day: September 7
Martyr from Aquileia, near modern Venice, Italy. A fuller or cloth merchant, Anastasius moved to Salona in Dalmatia, Yugoslavia. There he painted a cross on teh door of his shop and was speedily arrested and drowned.
TODAY'S GOSPEL: Luke 6: 12 - 19
Luke 6: 12 - 19
12 In these days he went out to the mountain to pray; and all night he continued in prayer to God.
13 And when it was day, he called his disciples, and chose from them twelve, whom he named apostles;
14 Simon, whom he named Peter, and Andrew his brother, and James and John, and Philip, and Bartholomew,
15 and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon who was called the Zealot,
16 and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.
17 And he came down with them and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea and Jerusalem and the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon, who came to hear him and to be healed of their diseases;
18 and those who were troubled with unclean spirits were cured.
19 And all the crowd sought to touch him, for power came forth from him and healed them all.