Thursday, January 13, 2011






VATICAN CITY, 13 JAN 2011 (VIS REPORTS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

- Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, prefect of the Congregation for Catholic Education.

- Cardinal Giovanni Lajolo, president of the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State and of the Governorate of Vatican City State.

- Bishop Joseph Werth S.J. of the Transfiguration at Novosibirsk, ordinary for faithful of the Byzantine rite resident in Russia.

- Martin Bolldorf, ambassador of Austria, on his farewell visit.

AP/ VIS 20110113 (80)



VATICAN CITY, 13 JAN 2011 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Archbishop Leopoldo Girelli, apostolic nuncio to Indonesia, as apostolic nuncio to Singapore, apostolic delegate to Malaysia and to Brunei, and non-residential pontifical representative for Vietnam.


CNN REPORT -- Thousands of families living on mountain slopes or on river banks in Brazil face "extreme risk" of being washed away in heavy rains and flooding that have killed more than 400 people, authorities said Thursday.

Officials feared that many more were dead, buried in landslides or washed away by gushing waters. Mud rushed down hillsides and into towns and cities in Rio de Janeiro state, as murky brown rivers cut through lush landscape.

President Dilma Rousseff flew over the affected areas Thursday and landed in a slushy, trash-littered soccer field in the city of Friburgo, the official Agencia Brasil news agency said.

She trudged through mud in her rain boots to talk to residents in a neighborhood where a fireman attempting to rescue people was buried alive.

"There will be strong government actions in order to help the cities," Roussef said.

With more rains in the forecast, Brazilian authorities have ordered mandatory evacuations for at least 5,000 families living in especially perilous areas in Rio de Janeiro state, Agencia Brasil said.Brazilian authorities have been criticized for a lack of disaster planning and allowing people to build homes in areas known to become treacherous in the rainy season.

The roofs of houses and tree tops were the only dry things peeking out from the water. People used inflatable rafts or inner tubes to navigate submerged roads. One family filmed by TV sat perched on the roof of their house, wondering how much higher the water would get.

Another 3,000 families from a mountainous region were homeless and sheltered in schools and gymnasiums, the news agency said.

"The most important thing right now is to assist the homeless population and reach the most critical points, said Rodrigo Neves, the state secretary of Social Welfare and Human Rights.

State health officials issued a plea for people to donate blood that will be sent to the Serrana region, where only 36 units of blood remained for treatment of flood victims.

The death toll was steadily climbing Thursday with at least 377 people dead in Rio de Janeiro state, civil defense officials said. Of those, 168 were in Nova Friburgo; 161 in Teresopolis; 35 in Petropolis; and 13 in Sumidouro.

In Teresopolis, schools and police stations served as morgues where people waited to identify their family and friends. Mayor Jorge Mario Sedlacek declared his city a natural disaster area.

In neighboring Sao Paulo, at least 24 people died as heavy rain continued to batter parts of the state, authorities said.

Aline Silva told Agencia Brasil that she narrowly escaped with her three children from a landslide in Rio de Janeiro's Feu district. She said they heard a thud, and then ran out with a few vital documents and the clothes on their back.

They lost everything else.


AUSTRALIA: TEEN DROWNS-TOLD RESCUER TAKE MY BROTHER FIRST report: TOOWOOMBA boy Jordan Rice, 13, has been remembered as a hero after he let his younger brother be rescued first, seconds before he and his mother Donna were swept to their deaths in the CBD.

The death toll from the devastating floods which swept through Toowoomba and the region on Monday afternoon has risen to 10, with grave fears held for another 18.

January 13, 2011 2:45 p.m. EST
Jordan Rice (inset) was swept to his death when floodwaters surrounded his family's car in Toowoomba.
Murphys Creek couple Steve and Sandra Matthews were killed when they were washed from their home. IMAGE SOURCE: CNN

Donna Rice's partner of 28 years, John Tyson, yesterday told The Chronicle how his beloved partner and their son perished.

Ms Rice, and sons Jordan, 13, and Blake, 10, were driving at the intersection of James and Kitchener streets about 2pm on Monday when they drove through water which at the time was only up to their car wheels.

However, their car engine stopped and Ms Rice called triple zero for help. She was unable to call anyone else as she had no phone credit.

The triple zero operator told the family to stay put and they were forced to climb on to the roof of their car after the floodwater rose rapidly.

Mr Tyson said no help came and bystanders watching the family did not offer help.

“All these people were just standing around until an old scrawny guy grabbed a bit of rope, wrapped it around himself and jumped in,” Mr Tyson said.

“Jordan can't swim and is terrified of water.

“But when the man went to rescue him, he said ‘save my brother first'.”

Mr Tyson said the man rescued Blake and tried to tie the rope around Jordan and Ms Rice but it broke.

They were swept downstream. The pair was able to briefly cling on to a tree, but was overcome by the force of raging floodwaters.

Mr Tyson wept as he told of his son's bravery when he knew how terrifying their last moments were.

“I can only imagine what was going on inside to give up his life to save his brother, even though he was petrified of water,” he said.

“He is our little hero.”

Mr Tyson and Ms Rice, 43, have four sons together — Chris, 22, Kyle, 16, Jordan, 13, and Blake, 10.

He wished to thank the good Samaritan who came to his family's help and rescued their son Blake.

The family had just picked up Jordan's high school uniforms that morning as he was due to start Year 8.

“They were the unsung heroes of my life. She was my soulmate.”

Ms Rice is the daughter of Marge and Arthur Rice.

Her sister Tracey Decaux said she loved chatting with her sister over a cigarette and cup of coffee.

Their children were great friends.


UCAN REPORT: Catholics in Central Java have appreciated the apostolic nuncio calling their newly installed archbishop of Semarang, the “Internet archbishop of Indonesia.”

‘Internet archbishop’ installed in Indonesia thumbnail
Archbishop Johannes Maria Trilaksyanta Pujasumarta
Archbishop Leopoldo Girelli, the nuncio, praised the new archbishop for constantly updating his Facebook and Twitter accounts with news, articles and insights.

Archbishop Pujasumarta has three Facebook accounts, two already full Johannes Pujasumarta Full and Johannes Pujasumarta Dua and the other Johannes Pujasumarta Tiga has 932 friends. His Twitter (Johannes Pujasumarta
3:27 PM)
account has 165 followers.

The nuncio also told Catholics at the installation Mass that the prelate had also broadcast his pastoral letter ending his work in Bandung diocese with a video clip on the Internet.

At the time of his new appointment, Archbishop Pujasumarta was bishop of Bandung.


CATHOLIC HERALD REPORT: Four remaining Poor Clares leave convent in Warwickshire after 160 years

By PETER JENNINGS on Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Archbishop bids sad farewell to last Poor Clares

Archbishop Bernard Longley, pictured with the four members of the Poor Clare community at Clares at Baddesley in the large parlour before the Mass of Thanksgiving on Saturday January 8. From left to right: Sister Felicity, Reverend Mother Abbess; Sister Anna-Lisa and Sister Mary. Sister Angela, seated, joined the community in 1950

A few hours after an emotional Mass of Thanksgiving for 160 years of the Poor Clares at Baddesley Clinton in Warwickshire, the four remaining members of the contemplative monastic community left the convent for the last time, writes Peter Jennings.

The oldest, Sister Angela joined the community during the Holy Year of 1950, 61 years ago. Archbishop Bernard Longley of Birmingham presided and preached at the Mass celebrated in the parish church of St Francis of Assisi on Saturday January 8.

The village church was packed to capacity as friends and supporters from far and wide joined parishioners for the deeply prayerful and poignant occasion.

Afterwards the Archbishop of Birmingham described the closure as “an irrevocable loss to the Archdiocese of Birmingham”.

The Poor Clares were founded by St Clare of Assisi and St Francis of Assisi on Palm Sunday in the year 1212 and spread throughout Europe. Their primary vocation was a contemplative life to pray in seclusion for the needs of the world. At Baddesley Clinton the Poor Clares were also involved in running a local school.

In 1850 a group of six Sisters arrived in Warwickshire from Bruges and the Poor Clare community of Baddesley Clinton was the first community of Poor Clares of the Colettine Reform to be re-established in England after the Reformation.

The community had close links with Blessed John Henry Newman, who lived in the Oratory House in Edgbaston, Birmingham. This holy parish priest used to visit the Sisters and bring provisions given by his parishioners – they used to leave these in a box at the back of the church situated next to the Oratory House.

The Sisters were poor and Cardinal Newman brought other gifts, including Christmas and Easter hampers at his own expense.

Sister Felicity, Reverend Mother Abbess, and two members of the Poor Clare Community at Baddesley Clinton, attended the beatification of Blessed John Henry Newman by Pope Benedict XVI during Mass at Cofton Park, Birmingham, on September 19 2010.

Before Archbishop Longley gave the final blessing at the Mass of Thanksgiving the master of ceremonies Fr John Sharp, the diocesan archivist and parish priest of St Francis of Assisi and chaplain to the Poor Clares at Baddesley Clinton, announced that the Sisters wished to give the archbishop the skullcap which was given to the community by Blessed John Henry Newman. Mother Felicity then presented the specially mounted skullcap to Archbishop Longley.

To warm applause the archbishop announced that the skullcap would be kept at St Chad’s Cathedral, Birmingham, where it is planned to set up a special shrine to Blessed John Henry Newman following his beatification.

The 13 concelebrants included Mgr Mark Crisp, rector of St Mary’s College, Oscott, the diocesan seminary, and other members of staff. During his homily Archbishop Longley warmly thanked the Sisters of the Poor Clare community: Sister Felicity, Reverend Mother Abbess; Sister Angela; Sister Mary and Sister Anna-Lisa on behalf of the Archdiocese of Birmingham.

He said: “Our prayerful gathering today is not a lament but a hope-filled thanksgiving for a remarkable witness to Christ, in the spirit of St Francis of Assisi and St Clare that the Sisters have shown in this setting for 160 years.

“The community of the Poor Clares of Baddesley Clinton has been to us and previous generations a gift of the Holy Spirit, and a witness to Christ’s faithfulness to his people. As we offer this Mass of Thanksgiving we also invoke the Lord’s continued blessing on each of the Sisters and the Poor Clare communities who will receive them.”

The Mother Abbess said religious houses throughout Europe were having to close owing to lack of vocations and added: “The future is in God’s hands.”


ALL AFRICA REPORT: There is something special about Masaka, especially the Masaka Catholic Diocese. It is the one place in Uganda that has places named based on the Bible; Beteleemu, Nazareti, Villa Maria, Mitala Maria, Galiraya. What is not usually known is that the first Africans to embrace the Catholic priesthood also came from Masaka; Fr Basil Lumu and Msgr Victor Mukasa Wameraka; the first African bishop and former Archbishop of Kampala, Joseph Nakabaale Kiwanuka, and later on a Cardinal in Emmanuel Wamala.

Their efforts marked the end of more than 500 years of unsuccessful attempts to produce priests in Africa. Today Africa has the largest number of Catholic priests in the world, accounting for 27% of 408,024 priests worldwide, according to the Vatican's 2008 census. These priests minister to 1,147 million Catholics worldwide.The census also found that the number of Catholic priests had declined in other parts of the world, prompting Pope Benedict XVI to designate June 19, 2009 as the start of the special year for priests, to coincide with the 150th anniversary of the death of St John Mary Vianney.

The Pope declared St John Mary Vianney, known as the Curé d'Ars, as the Universal Patron of Priests. The Pope called the event a period of reflection and prayer to encourage deepening of the spiritual life for all priests.

While official celebrations ended June 19, 2010 at the Vatican, in Uganda, the Archbishop of Kampala Dr Cyprian Kizito Lwanga formally closed the year on October 31, with a special call to priests to remain holy as their ministry requires.

"I urge you to be exemplary leaders in your communities and also work hard to ensure that the people attain the kingdom of God," Archbishop Lwanga said. The Archbishop also urged priests to follow the example of their patron saint by being humble and hardworking like John Mary Vianney.

"I can tell you that there are priests who would be out there doing other things, if it was not for our ancestors," he said.The remains of Fr Lumu and Msgr Mukasa lie in Villa Maria parish church, from where the major celebrations for Masaka Diocese were held. Bishop John Baptist Kaggwa commended the first priests for sowing the seed.

Several priests say they have benefited from the year of the priests, drawing on the inspiration of Catholics who turned up daily to say a special prayer for them at the end of each daily mass.

Fr Joseph Kazibwe Ntuwa is the chancellor in the Archdiocese of Kampala and he says he is grateful that many Catholics prayed for them.

"I'm inspired to become a better priest after this special year; I think Catholics out there will see better priests out of us," he said.


St. Hilary of Poitiers


Feast: January 13


Feast Day:January 13

300, Poitiers

Died:368, Poitiers

Bishop, born in that city at the beginning of the fourth century; died there 1 November, according to the most accredited opinion, or according to the Roman Breviary, on 13 January, 368. Belonging to a noble and very probably pagan family, he was instructed in all the branches of profane learning, but, having also taken up the study of Holy Scripture and finding there the truth which he sought so ardently, he renounced idolatry and was baptized. Thenceforth his wide learning and his zeal for the Faith attracted such attention that he was chosen about 350 to govern the body of the faithful which the city had possessed since the third century. We know nothing of the bishops who governed this society in the beginning. Hilary is the first concerning whom we have authentic information, and this is due to the important part he played in opposing heresy. The Church was then greatly disturbed by internal discords, the authority of the popes not being so powerful in practice as either to prevent or to stop them. Arianism had made frightful ravages in various regions and threatened to invade Gaul, where it already had numerous partisans more or less secretly affiliated with it. Saturninus, Bishop of Arles, the most active of the latter, being exposed by Hilary, convened and presided over a council at Béziers in 356 with the intention of justifying himself, or rather of establishing his false doctrine. Here the Bishop of Poitiers courageously presented himself to defend orthodoxy, but the council, composed for the most part of Arians, refused to hear him, and being shortly afterwards denounced to the Emperor Constantius, the protector of Arianism, he was at his command transported to the distant coasts of Phrygia.

But persecution could not subdue the valiant champion. Instead of remaining inactive during his exile he gave himself up to study, completed certain of his works which he had begun, and wrote his treatise on the synods. In this work he analysed the professions of faith uttered by the Oriental bishops in the Councils of Ancyra, Antioch, and Sirmium, and while condemning them, since they were in substance Arian, he sought to show that sometimes the difference between the doctrines of certain heretics and orthodox beliefs was rather in the words than in the ideas, which led to his counselling the bishops of the West to be reserved in their condemnation. He was sharply reproached for his indulgence by certain ardent Catholics, the leader of whom was Lucifer, Bishop of Cagliari. However, in 359, the city of Seleucia witnessed the assembly in synod of a large number of Oriental bishops, nearly all of whom were either Anomoeans or Semi-Arians. Hilary, whom everyone wished to see and hear, so great was his reputation for learning and virtue, was invited to be present at this assembly. The governor of the province even furnished him with post horses for the journey. In presence of the Greek fathers he set forth the doctrines of the Gallic bishops, and easily proved that, contrary to the opinion current in the East, these latter were not Sabellians. Then he took part in the violent discussions which took place between the Semi-Arians, who inclined toward reconciliation with the Catholics, and the Anomoeans, who formed as it were the extreme left of Arianism.

After the council, which had no result beyond the wider separation of these brothers in enmity, he left for Constantinople, the stronghold of heresy, to continue his battle against error. But while the Semi-Arians, who were less numerous and less powerful, besought him to become the intermediary in a reconciliation between themselves and the bishops of the West, the Anomoeans, who had the immense advantage of being upheld by the emperor, besought the latter to send back to his own country this Gallic bishop, who, they said, sowed discord and troubled the Orient. Constantius acceded to their desire, and the exile was thus enabled to set out on his journey home. In 361 Hilary re-entered Poitiers in triumph and resumed possession of his see. He was welcomed with the liveliest joy by his flock and his brothers in the episcopate, and was visited by Martin, his former disciple and subsequently Bishop of Tours. The success he had achieved in his combat against error was rendered more brilliant shortly afterwards by the deposition of Saturninus, the Arian Bishop of Arles by whom he had been persecuted. However, as in Italy the memory still rankled of the efforts he had made to bring about a reconciliation between the nearly converted Semi-Arians and the Catholics, he went in 364 to the Bishop of Vercelli to endeavour to overcome the intolerance of the partisans of the Bishop Lucifer mentioned above. Almost immediately afterwards, that it might be seen that, if he was full of indulgence for those whom gentleness might finally win from error, he was intractable towards those who were obstinate in their adherence to it, he went to Milan, there to assail openly Auxentius, the bishop of that city, who was a firm defender of the Arian doctrines. But the Emperor Valentinian, who protected the heretic, ordered Hilary to depart immediately from Milan.

He then returned to his city of Poitiers, from which he was not again to absent himself and where he was to die. This learned and energetic bishop had fought against error with the pen as well as in words. The best edition of his numerous and remarkable writings is that published by Dom Constant under the title: "Sancti Hilarii, Pictavorum episcopi opera, ad manuscriptos codices gallicanos, romanos, belgicos, necnon ad veteres editiones castigata" (Paris, 1693). The Latin Church celebrates his feast on 14 January, and Pius IX raised him to the rank of Doctor of the Universal Church. The Church of Puy glories in the supposed possession of his relics, but according to one tradition his body was borne to the church of St-Denys near Paris, while according to another it was taken from the church of St-Hilaire at Poitiers and burned by the Protestants in 1572.


TODAY'S GOSPEL: JAN. 13: MARK: 1: 40- 45

Mark 1: 40 - 45
40And a leper came to him beseeching him, and kneeling said to him, "If you will, you can make me clean."41Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, "I will; be clean."42And immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean.43And he sternly charged him, and sent him away at once,44and said to him, "See that you say nothing to any one; but go, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, for a proof to the people."45But he went out and began to talk freely about it, and to spread the news, so that Jesus could no longer openly enter a town, but was out in the country; and people came to him from every quarter.

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