Monday, February 13, 2012




Vatican City, (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office has issued a communique rejecting claims made in an article entitled "Money Laundering: Four Priests under Investigation. The Silence of the Vatican" which appeared yesterday in the Italian newspaper "L'Unita". Extracts from the communique are given below.
"The article ... unfortunately reveals a considerable lack of serious research by the author.
"We must begin by making two introductory observations. The title of the article refers to silence on the part of the Vatican. ... This is completely groundless because the Holy See and the authorities of the Vatican have duly cooperated with magistrates and other Italian authorities. The claims made in the article are merely a reworking of past criticisms. ... They are, in fact, 'recycled' accusations which the same journalist has already published on a number of occasions in the past. Repeating them once again does not make them true; rather, we must ask ourselves whether the article was not intended as a kind of advertisement for an evening television show.
"As to the contents of the article, we must clarify the following".
"The principal accusation is that the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR) has been involved in illegal activity and that is has failed to assist the Italian authorities who were pursuing these individuals" (the alleged money launderers).
"This is incorrect. Firstly, the article fails to report that, beginning in the years 2006-2007, the IOR has been determinedly committed to analysing accounts and verifying clients in order to ascertain and report the presence of any suspicious transactions. These efforts by the IOR (which, strangely, the media seem to ignore) to identify suspect operations pre-date by several years the adoption by Vatican City State, on 30 December 2010, of Law No. 127 to Counter Money Laundering.
"Moreover, as the Italian authorities are aware, and as emerges from documentation in the possession of officials both of the Holy See and of the Republic of Italy, the IOR has repeatedly cooperated with the Italian authorities at all levels. ... The IOR supplied information, even outside official channels, in the period preceding the establishment of the Vatican Financial Information Authority (AIF). The cooperation of Paolo Cipriani, director general of the IOR, has been described as 'punctual and complete' in documents written by Italian officials. Indeed, in one case, it was precisely rapid action on the part of Mr. Cipriani that enabled one of the individuals identified to be accused".
"Following consultation with the AIF, we can confirm the following:
"(1) It is not true that the IOR failed to provide information to the AIF on the issues in question.
"(2) It is not true that the AIF failed to forward this information to the Italian Financial Information Unit.
"(3) The Italian authorities have never made a request to the AIF regarding one of the individuals mentioned in the article, Msgr. Messina; therefore it is clearly impossible for the AIF to 'respond' to its Italian counterpart.
"These points regarding communication between the AIF and its Italian counterpart are all confirmed by documents held by the AIF, identified with specific protocol numbers.
"Furthermore, the article does not report that on 6 June 2011 one of the individuals mentioned therein - Fr. Bonaccorsi - was declared innocent, a sentence confirmed on appeal.
"The sadly defamatory effect of the article arises from the use of the term 'incriminated' to refer to Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, president of the IOR, and to Paolo Cipriani. Neither of them has ever been incriminated, but merely investigated".
Vatican City, (VIS) - The logo for World Youth Day 2013 has been revealed in the John Paul II Centre in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. WYD 2013 will be held in that Brazilian city next year.
Vatican Radio has announced that the logo, work of a young Brazilian artist Gustavo Huguenin, portrays a heart (symbol of youth) in the colours of the national flag (green and yellow). At the centre of the heart is the silhouette of the famous statue of Christ the Redeemer overlooking the city of Rio de Janeiro. At the top is a cross, in recollection of the fact that the core of WYD is Christ Himself.
Vatican City, (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in audience:
- Archbishop Francisco Montecillo Padilla, apostolic nuncio to Tanzania.
- Eighteen prelates of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, on their "ad limina" visit:
- Cardinal Francis Eugene George O.M.I., archbishop of Chicago, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishops Francis J. Kane, George J. Rassas, Andrew Peter Wypych and Alberto Rojas.
- Bishop Edward K. Braxton of Belleville.
- Bishop Robert Daniel Conlon of Joliet in Illinois, accompanied by Auxiliary Bishop Joseph M. Siegel, and by Bishop emeritus Joseph Leopold Imesch.
- Bishop Daniel Robert Jenky C.S.C. of Peoria.
- Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki of Springfield in Illinois.
- Bishop Christopher J. Coyne, auxiliary of Indianapolis.
- Bishop Charles C. Thompson of Evansville, accompanied by Bishop emeritus Gerald Andrew Gettelfinger.
- Bishop Kevin Carl Rhoades of Fort Wayne - South Bend, accompanied by Bishop emeritus John Michael D'Arcy.
- Bishop Dale Joseph Melczek of Gary.
- Bishop Timothy L. Doherty of Lafayette in Indiana.


by Nirmala Carvalho
The state’s High Court makes the ruling following a petition by the Islamic Relief Committee of Gujarat. Fr Prakash, director of a Jesuit human rights centre, welcomes the decision. More than a thousand people were killed in the 2002 riots; 523 places were destroyed, including three churches.

Mumbai (AsiaNews) – The Gujarat High Court has ruled that the government of Gujarat will have to compensate and rebuild the more than 500 places of worship destroyed during the 2002 riots. The ruling criticises Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi whose administration showed “negligence” in protecting citizens and religious structures. The decision follows a petition filed by Islamic Relief Committee of Gujarat (IRCG) in the absence of government compensation for the victims of the 2002 massacre.

“We welcome the news,” said Fr Cedric Prakash, director of the Prashant Human Rights Centre in Ahmadabad. “This judgement surely comes as a relief for victims’ survivors, for those fighting for justice and for all those who cherish the secular fabric and the diversity of our country and wish to preserve it.”

On 27 February 2002, a group of Muslims attacked the Sabarmati Express, a train carrying Hindu pilgrims, especially women, children and seniors, on their way home from Ayodhya.

The attack unleashed sectarian riots across Gujarat. Local Muslims suffered the most. Of the thousand and more who are known to have died, 790 were Muslims and 254 were Hindus. In addition, 253 people are still missing.

Overall, 523 places of cult, including three churches, were destroyed. The authorities arrested 27,901 Hindus and 7.651 Muslims.


Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese REPORT
9 Feb 2012
The Shadow Treasurer, Hon Joe Hockey praised the Catholic education system and said he also had been a great beneficiary. Mr Hockey was a special guest at the official opening and blessing of Tenison Woods House at the Australia Catholic University's North Sydney campus.
The Archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell blessed the latest ACU acquisition which has been named after Fr Julian Tenison Woods, who along with the now St Mary of the Cross MacKillop was co-founder of the Sisters of St Joseph.
The 22-storey building purchased last year, will allow ACU to continue with its expansion program by providing library and learning space for new courses in Allied Health, Law, Global Studies and Business.
Joe Hockey, Federal Liberal Member of Parliament for North Sydney, said ACU was an important part of the North Sydney landscape and described the university as a "wonderful institution" with its students providing growth and energy throughout the community.
"My family were also beneficiaries of Catholic education and continue to be," he said and spoke of a nephew who will shortly graduate from ACU.
Not only was this young man the first in his immediate family to attend university, but as he proudly told those present, the final year student had already secured a position as a graduate with highly-regarded international professional services network, KPMG.
"This illustrates the opportunities ACU is providing to people, many of whom may not have previously ever had the chance to attend university," the Shadow Treasurer said.
St Mary of the Cross MacKillop is patron saint of ACU and its five campuses across Australia. But until now full tribute has not been paid by the university to Fr Tenison Woods who not only helped found the Sisters of St Joseph but was instrumental in helping establish the first Josephite school in Penola, SA.
Vice Chancellor, Greg Craven says naming the 22-story building - formerly NRC House - after Fr Julian Tenison Woods was a unique opportunity to recognise a man he described as "one of the greatest figures in the history of the Australian Church."
"He was a great priest and a scholar," Professor Craven said. "The range of his academic work was such that he could, if he were alive today, walk into any chair at any university in Australia. He wrote multiple books, hundreds of scholarly articles and was a member of numerous royal societies, with a range of knowledge and research covering everything from biology to geology, history and geography. He also had a particular interest in Australia's indigenous people."
Together with students, Chancellor of ACU, former Defence Chief General Peter Cosgrove AC MC and Cardinal Pell, those who attended the official opening and blessing of Tenison Woods house included members of the Tenison Woods family.



Children are the hope and future of the nation. Consequently, the Southern African Catholic Bishops, express their deep concern about the current crisis effecting schools in the Eastern Cape Province. Access to education is a matter of simple justice for each child – and it is incumbent on Government to provide it without fail.
The lack of infrastructure and the rundown state of schools as well as the ‘go slow’ by teachers is putting the future of many of our children at risk. The Eastern Cape Provincial Government must take appropriate action to rescue the floundering education system, which is denying children their right to education. Otherwise the government will be responsible for perpetuating the second class ‘bantustan’ education system, and contributing to the wide divide between rich and poor
Education plays a crucial role in building up a democratic society. Teachers as key role players must put the children first and teach them by example to be engaged and responsible members of society, who give meaning and purpose in life by being agents of change for the good of all. In order to achieve this, teachers must make teaching a vocation that is marked by conscientious work, professionalism, care, love and a breadth of vision.
We acknowledge the efforts that are being made to end the ‘go slow’, as well as government’s attempts to arrest the slide to chaos. Nevertheless we call on national and provincial government to take full charge and control of the situation, work together with SADTU (the South African Democratic Teachers’ Union) to end the impasse as soon as is practically possible. They owe it to the future generations of the Eastern Cape to ensure that the doors of learning are open to all the children in the Province.
- Issued by the Office of the Secretary General of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference.



By ED WEST on Friday, 10 February 2012
Catholic Youth Ministry aims to fill out Wembley Arena for Olympic event
Fr Howarth (third from right) at the launch at CYMFed yesterday
The Catholic Youth Ministry (CYMFed) is hoping to fill out the 11,000 capacity Wembley Arena for the Flame Congress next month.
The organisers have already sold 7,000 tickets for the event, which will be hosted on March 24 and will link sport and faith before the London Olympic Games this summer.
The event was inspired by the success of the Papal Visit of September 2010, in which large numbers of young people at Westminster Cathedral, Hyde Park and at “the Big Assembly” at Twickenham were active.
There will be ten bishops at the event, as well as Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster, and among the speakers will be Sister Catherine Holum, a former Olympic speedskater, Barry and Margaret Mkizen and Paschal Uche, who spoke at the Papal Visit. There will be talks on the themes of “friendship, excellence and respect”, while the music will be composed by Edwin Fawcett, who was heavily involved in the music for the Papal Vigil.
Such is the demand for the Flame Congress, which takes its name from St Paul’s letter to Timothy – “Fan into a Flame the gifts that God gave you” – that Hexham and Newcastle Diocese have hired a train to Wembley, and filled it out already.
Fr Dominic Howarth, Flame Congress Coordinator, said: “We hope people have a good day, but we want more than that – we want it to form their faith and their character. We hope it’s an affirming day for the person who is the only young person in their parish and looks around and sees 10,000 people and realises ‘I’m not alone here’.”


Agenzia Fides REPORT - The police continue the strike and the people of Bahia, state in northeastern Brazil, live in anguish. In just six days there have been 87 murders, the result of criminal acts, and is in a wave of ransacking. Government officials of Bahia and associations of the military police in the Brazilian state met two days ago, with the Church as mediator, to try to resolve the dispute over wages.
In the residence of the Archbishop of Sao Salvador da Bahia and Primate of Brazil, Mgr. Murilo Sebastião Ramos Krieger, S.C.I., the parties sought to end the strike, but still has not solved the problem. This is the second attempt of negotiations. The first (4 days ago) lasted 10 hours. The spokesman for the archdiocese, Father Manoel Ribeiro, explained that the position of the associations concerning the counterproposal made by the government of Bahia is being debated. The governor of Bahia, Jaques Wagner, believes that negotiations with the military police are progressing and took the opportunity to urge the police not to abandon the people to themselves. But Wagner also said that there will be no amnesty for those responsible for acts of vandalism. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 09/02/2012)


Mark 7: 24 - 30
24 And from there he arose and went away to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And he entered a house, and would not have any one know it; yet he could not be hid.
25 But immediately a woman, whose little daughter was possessed by an unclean spirit, heard of him, and came and fell down at his feet.
26 Now the woman was a Greek, a Syrophoeni'cian by birth. And she begged him to cast the demon out of her daughter.
27 And he said to her, "Let the children first be fed, for it is not right to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs."
28 But she answered him, "Yes, Lord; yet even the dogs under the table eat the children's crumbs."
29 And he said to her, "For this saying you may go your way; the demon has left your daughter."
30 And she went home, and found the child lying in bed, and the demon gone.


St Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin (1474-1548). Little is known about the life of Juan Diego before his conversion, but tradition and archaeological and iconographical sources, along with the most important and oldest indigenous document on the event of Guadalupe, "El Nican Mopohua" (written in Náhuatl with Latin characters, 1556, by the Indigenous writer Antonio Valeriano), give some information on the life of the saint and the apparitions.Juan Diego was born in 1474 with the name "Cuauhtlatoatzin" ("the talking eagle") in Cuautlitlán, today part of Mexico City, Mexico. He was a gifted member of the Chichimeca people, one of the more culturally advanced groups living in the Anáhuac Valley.When he was 50 years old he was baptized by a Franciscan priest, Fr Peter da Gand, one of the first Franciscan missionaries. On 9 December 1531, when Juan Diego was on his way to morning Mass, the Blessed Mother appeared to him on Tepeyac Hill, the outskirts of what is now Mexico City. She asked him to go to the Bishop and to request in her name that a shrine be built at Tepeyac, where she promised to pour out her grace upon those who invoked her. The Bishop, who did not believe Juan Diego, asked for a sign to prove that the apparition was true. On 12 December, Juan Diego returned to Tepeyac. Here, the Blessed Mother told him to climb the hill and to pick the flowers that he would find in bloom. He obeyed, and although it was winter time, he found roses flowering. He gathered the flowers and took them to Our Lady who carefully placed them in his mantle and told him to take them to the Bishop as "proof". When he opened his mantle, the flowers fell on the ground and there remained impressed, in place of the flowers, an image of the Blessed Mother, the apparition at Tepeyac.With the Bishop's permission, Juan Diego lived the rest of his life as a hermit in a small hut near the chapel where the miraculous image was placed for veneration. Here he cared for the church and the first pilgrims who came to pray to the Mother of Jesus.Much deeper than the "exterior grace" of having been "chosen" as Our Lady's "messenger", Juan Diego received the grace of interior enlightenment and from that moment, he began a life dedicated to prayer and the practice of virtue and boundless love of God and neighbour. He died in 1548 and was buried in the first chapel dedicated to the Virgin of Guadalupe. He was beatified on 6 May 1990 byPope John Paul II in the Basilica of Santa Maria di Guadalupe, Mexico City.The miraculous image, which is preserved in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, shows a woman with native features and dress. She is supported by an angel whose wings are reminiscent of one of the major gods of the traditional religion of that area. The moon is beneath her feet and her blue mantle is covered with gold stars. The black girdle about her waist signifies that she is pregnant. Thus, the image graphically depicts the fact that Christ is to be "born" again among the peoples of the New World, and is a message as relevant to the "New World" today as it was during the lifetime of Juan Diego.


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