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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

CATHOLIC NEWS WORLD : TUES. MARCH 6, 2012

AMERICA : CHILE : BISHOP SEEKS DIALOGUE TO HELP GOVERNMENT
AFRICA : ERITREA : POPE CREATES NEW EPARCHY OF SEGHENEITY
ASIA : SRI LANKA : 6000 HONOR ST. ANTHONY AT CHURCH
TODAY'S SAINT : MARCH 6: ST. COLETTE OF CORBIE
TODAY'S MASS ONLINE : TUES. MARCH 6, 2012
 
VATICAN : POPE : CONDOLENCES ON ACCIDENTS AND OTHER NEWS
TELEGRAMS FOR RAIL ACCIDENT IN POLAND AND EXPLOSIONS IN CONGO (Image source)
Vatican City, (VIS) - The Holy Father, through Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B., has sent a telegram of condolence to Archbishop Jozef Michalik, president of the Polish Episcopal Conference, for the victims of the 3 March train crash at Szczekociny near Zawiercie, which killed fifteen people and left many others injured.
In the telegram, the Pope makes known his sadness on hearing the news and his spiritual closeness to everyone affected by the tragedy. He also gives assurances of his prayers for the victims and shares the mourning of families and of the entire nation. He implores divine mercy and eternal life for the deceased and wishes a speedy recovery to the injured. He also asks for the gift of courage and peace for those who suffer and comforts them with the words of St. Paul to the Thessalonians: "Since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have died".
The Holy Father has likewise sent a telegram, also through Cardinal Bertone, to Archbishop Louis Portella-Mbuyu, president of the Episcopal Conference of Congo, for the death of more than 200 people in Brazzaville in the wake of a series of explosions in an arms depot.
Having been informed of this "tragic catastrophe" the Holy Father expresses his profound condolence to the families and friends of the victims, and asks the Lord to welcome the deceased into His peace and light. The Pope also expresses his thanks for the efforts of rescue workers and appeals to God to bring "consolation and hope" to the injured and to everyone affected by this dramatic event.





SEVENTY PER CENT OF WORLD POPULATION LIVE IN COUNTRIES WITH HIGH RESTRICTIONS ON RELIGIOUS BELIEFS
Vatican City, (VIS) - "Terrorist attacks on Christians in Africa, the Middle East and Asia increased 309 per cent between 2003 and 2010. Approximately 70 per cent of the world’s population lives in countries with high restrictions on religious beliefs and practices, and religious minorities pay the highest price". These words were pronounced on 1 March by Archbishop Silvano M. Tomasi C.S., permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations at Geneva, during the course of the nineteenth ordinary session of the Human Rights Council.
Speaking English, Archbishop Tomasi recalled how, "in general, rising restrictions on religion affect more than 2.2 billion people. Those affected have either lost the protection of their societies or have experienced some government-imposed and unjust restrictions, or have become victims of violence resulting from an impulsive bigotry".
Among the causes of this phenomenon, the archbishop mentioned "the evolving political situation, wrong perceptions of the role of religion, expediency, and subtle ambiguities in the understanding of secularism". In the current situation, it is vital for the international community "to assure the protection of people in their exercise of freedom of religion and religious practice".
In this context, the Holy See observer noted that States must guarantee all their citizens the right to religious freedom, at both the individual and community level. Freedom of religion is not a derived or granted right, "but a fundamental and inalienable right of the human person. ... The task of government is not to define religion, ... but to confer upon faith communities a juridical personality so that they can function peacefully within a legal framework.
"Respect for the religious freedom of everyone may be at stake in places where the concept of “State religion” is recognised, especially when the latter becomes the source of unjust treatment of others, whether they believe in other faiths or have none".
The archbishop went on: "Above the institutional considerations, the critical problem facing the promotion and protection of human rights in the area of religious freedom is the intolerance that leads to violence and to the killing of many innocent people each year simply because of their religious convictions. The realistic and collective responsibility, therefore, is to sustain mutual tolerance and respect of human rights and a greater equality among citizens of different religions in order to achieve a healthy democracy where the public role of religion and the distinction between religious and temporal spheres are recognised. ... But to achieve this desirable goal, there is a need to overcome a culture that devalues the human person and is intent on eliminating religion from public life".
"Religions are not a threat, but a resource", he said. "They contribute to the development of civilisations, and this is good for everyone. Their freedom and activities should be protected so that the partnership between religious beliefs and societies may enhance the common good. ... The educational system and the media have a major role to play by excluding prejudice and hatred from textbooks, from newscasts and from newspapers, and by disseminating accurate and fair information on all component groups of society.
"But lack of education and information, that facilitates an easier manipulation of people for political advantages, is too often linked to underdevelopment, poverty, lack of access to effective participation in the management of society. Greater social justice provides fertile ground for the implementation of all human rights. Religions are communities based on convictions and their freedom guarantees a contribution of moral values without which the freedom of everyone is not possible. For this reason", Archbishop Tomasi concluded, "it becomes an urgent and beneficial responsibility of the international community to counteract the trend of increasing violence against religious groups and of mistaken and deceptive neutrality that in fact aims at neutralising religion".





WESTMINSTER ABBEY CHOIR TO SING IN ST. PETER'S
Vatican City, (VIS) - The Choir of Westminster Abbey in London, England, is due to sing alongside the "Cappella Musicale Pontificia", or Sistine Choir, on 29 June, in an event which will be broadcast across the world. The Westminster Choir has been invited to the Holy See through Msgr. Massimo Palombella, director of the Sistine Choir.
A joint communique made public today notes that "this momentous ecumenical occasion is the first time in its over-500 year history that the Sistine Chapel Choir has joined forces with another choir. The invitation to Rome came after Pope Benedict XVI visited the Abbey in September 2010 when he attended Evening Prayer and prayed at the tomb of St. Edward the Confessor with Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury, as part of his State visit to England and Scotland".
Speaking about the forthcoming visit, the primate of the Anglican Church has highlighted how St. Peter is patron of both the Vatican Basilica and of Westminster Abbey, therefore "celebrating together his apostolic witness and example is a powerful reminder of the call that our Churches share to be faithful to the apostolic fullness of the Gospel today".
The two choirs will together sing at First Vespers in the Basilica of St. Paul's Outside-the-Walls on 28 June, and at Mass in the Vatican Basilica on the morning of 29 June. The Westminster Abbey Choir will also travel to the Benedictine monastery at Montecassino to sing Vespers and Mass with the monastic community at the burial place of St Benedict. It was Benedictine monks who established a tradition of daily worship which continues to this day in Westminster Abbey, founded in the year 960.





OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
Vatican City, 6 March 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father erected the new eparchy of Faridabad of the Syro-Malabars (priests 44, religious 200) India. He appointed Msgr. Kuriakose Bharanikulangara of the clergy of Ernakulam-Angamaly of the Syro-Malabars, India, counsellor of the apostolic nunciature to Germany, as first bishop of the new diocese, conferring upon him the title of archbishop "ad personam". The archbishop-elect was born in Karippassery, India in 1959 and ordained a priest in 1983. He studied in Rome before entering the diplomatic service of the Holy See, with which he has served in a number of different countries.

EUROPE : IRELAND 900 YEAR OLD SAINT'S HEART STOLEN

UCAN NEWS REPORT:
Henry McDonald
Ireland
March 5, 2012
Catholic Church News Image of 900 year old saint’s heart stolen from cathedral
Irish police are hunting for a thief who stole the heart of a saint.
The burglar sneaked into Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin on Friday night and ignored valuable gold chalices and candlesticks, choosing instead to take the preserved heart of Laurence O’Toole, the city’s 12th-century patron saint.
A cathedral spokesman said the thief would have needed a metal cutter to remove the heart, which was kept in a wooden reliquary inside a box with iron bars.
No alarm was triggered and there was no sign of a break-in, said the spokesman, adding that three valuable gold chalices and gold candlesticks in the chapel were not stolen.
“It’s completely bizarre. They didn’t touch anything else. They specifically targeted this, they wanted the heart of St Laurence O’Toole,” the spokesman said.
The dean of the cathedral, the Most Rev Dermot Dunne, said he was devastated by the theft.
“It has no economic value but it is a priceless treasure that links our present foundation with its founding father, St Laurence O’Toole,” he said.
Gardai are studying CCTV footage of people entering the cathedral and detectives are investigating the theory that thieves may have hidden themselves inside overnight before breaking into the iron box once the building was closed to the public. http://www.ucanews.com/2012/03/05/900-year-old-saints-heart-stolen-from-cathedral/

AUSTRALIA : FUNERAL OF FR. GERRY IVERSON WITH BISHOP

DIOCESE OF PARRAMATTA REPORT:

A life underpinned and inspired by the spiritual


Go to Fr Gerry Iverson Vigil & Funeral Mass Photo Galleries
Photo: Shelly Barnes

The Catholic Community of Our Lady Queen of Peace Greystanes has mourned the passing of its much-loved Pastor Emeritus Fr Gerry Iverson at a Funeral Mass on Friday 2 March.
A Vigil was held for Fr Gerry at Greystanes on Thursday 1 March.
http://www.parra.catholic.org.au/

AMERICA : CHILE : BISHOP SEEKS DIALOGUE TO HELP GOVERNMENT

Agenzia Fides REPORT - "Aysén wakes up more worried than ever, because we are convinced that once again, as happened continually throughout these days, we have been misled by the words and actions of the government, and this turns more and more minds," said the Bishop of Aysen, his Exc. Mgr. Luis Infanti on March 3, talking to a local radio,. The local population is exacerbated by the lack of response from the state, to its requests for infrastructure, subsidies for small and medium businesses, better working conditions ... to the point of blocking the main access road to the village provoking clashes with the police (see Fides 23/02/2012). From the headquarters of the government what was said once again is that there will be dialogue only when they will be no protesters in the main streets of the region.
In the note sent to Fides other words on behalf of Mgr. Infanti are read: "I would like to situate the whole situation, from a political point of view, in the sense that the government wants to give the signal of being able to govern in a region that is now ungovernable. At the moment the authorities have absolutely no power in the region, there is a total lack of confidence in them. Who is in charge right now are the people and its leaders."
Speaking on the arrival in the area of the Minister of Energy, Rodrigo Alvarez, the Bishop said, "he had come to unblock the problem, but I do not see 'full power' with which he said that he had come. Everything is managed according to a political vision of Santiago, the leadership of the government, and it seems to me - something I cannot confirm because there is no dialogue - whether it is a strategy to take even more time before giving an answer a bit more consistent than the previously announced with regards to the demands of the people of Aysen. If there are intentions to solve the problem, I cannot understand why there is no ability to respond with reason, and I hope not by force, to the requests of the region."
According to the latest news agencies, after an urgent meeting in which the President of Chile Political Committee met to assess the conflict, the central government seems willing to apply the state of emergency in the area. The application of the "Law of State Security" due to blockage of main roads, will only be one more problem in the conflict zone. The Social Movement of Aysén wants to maintain a partial block, until they see the results of the initiatives promoted by the government. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 05/03/2012)

AFRICA : ERITREA : POPE CREATES NEW EPARCHY OF SEGHENEITY

CISA NEWS REPORT:
in Cisa News
ASMARA, March 02, 2012 (CISA) -Pope Benedict XVI has created the Eparchy of Segheneity in Eritrea from the Eparchy of Asmara. He has nominated Fr Fikremariam Hagos Tsalim to be its first bishop.
An Eparchy is an equivalent of a diocese. Fr Tsalim was born in 1970 and ordained a priest in 1996. He is a priest of the Eparchy of Asmara and has served as secretary to the bishop and bursar at the bishop’s house.
He studied in Moral theology at the Academy Alfonsiana in Rome, after which he was appointed member of the diocesan tribunal, a post he held at the time of this appointment.
There are approximately 150,000 Catholics in Eritrea, who follow both the Latin rite and the Ge’ez rite.
Both Catholic denominations (the Ge’ez and the Latin) account for an estimated 5 percent of the Eritrean population. The Eritrean Catholic Church is “tolerated” by the dictatorship that rules Eritrea.
The nation has also many Roman Catholics of the Latin rite, most of whom are Italian Eritreans.
http://www.cisanewsafrica.com/

ASIA : SRI LANKA : 6000 HONOR ST. ANTHONY AT CHURCH

ASIA NEWS REPORT:
by Melani Manel Perera
Annual celebrations (3 and 4 March) were held on Kachchathive, an island between India and Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka's Navy organised the celebrations, doing some road repair and handing out food. Religious from Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka co-celebrated the Eucharist.


Kachchathive (AsiaNews) - Almost 6,000 Indian and Sri Lankan Catholics have taken part in the annual celebration of St Anthony of Padua in the church that bears his name on the island of Kachchathive (Sri Lanka). The Portuguese-born Franciscan is the patron saint of local fishermen and sea people. For the occasion, the Sri Lankan Navy organised a two-day celebration last weekend.
The event gave New Delhi and Colombo an opportunity to renew their bilateral friendship since the island where the festivities were held in the middle of the strait that separates the two nations. As a symbol of this friendship, 40 religious from Sri Lanka and 150 representatives from the Indian Catholic Church in Tamil Nadu co-celebrate Sunday Mass.
As part of its preparations, the Navy fixed the roads and set up sanitary facilities on the island. The authorities also built facilities for drinking water and handed out 6,700 snacks on Saturday evening and 8,000 breakfast packs on Sunday morning.
Participants from India, both lay people and clergy, were grateful to Sri Lankan authorities for the way they were well treated. However, some young people from Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu, were displeased that Indian authorities had allowed only people from their state to take part in the feast.
Coming with a group of 12 people, Arokiam Selva said, "We are happy to see more people than last year, but everyone in India should be free to come."
"It is an important occasion to show solidarity and love to our neighbours," said Fr Milfer Vaz.
Kachchathive Island is located some 24 kilometres from Rameshwaram and 70 from Jaffna.
India ceded it in 1974 when it signed an agreement with Sri Lanka demarcating the maritime border.
Under the terms of the accord, Indian fishermen can fish in the area. Indian Pilgrims can also visit the Chapel of St Anthony without a visa or Sri Lanka's permission.
The original chapel was built in 1806 and expanded into a church in 1828.
Most islanders are fishermen and pray to St Anthony, their patron saint. For them, the days of 3 and 4 March are one of the most important moments of the year.
http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Some-6,000-devout-Indians-and-Sri-Lankans-mark-St-Anthony's-together-24150.html

TODAY'S SAINT : MARCH 6: ST. COLETTE OF CORBIE

St. Colette of Corbie
FOUNDRESS OF THE COLETTINE POOR CLARES
Feast: February 7


Information:
Feast Day: February 7 or March 6
Born:
13 January 1381, at Corbie in Picardy, France
Died: 6 March 1447, Ghent
Canonized: 24 May 1807
Founder of Colettine Poor Clares (Clarisses), born 13 January 1381, at Corbie in Picardy, France; died at Ghent, 6 March, 1447. Her father, Robert Boellet, was the carpenter of the famous Benedictine Abbey of Corbie; her mother's name was Marguerite Moyon. Colette joined successively the Bequines, the Benedictines, and the Urbanist Poor Clares. Later she lived for a while as a recluse. Having resolved to reform the Poor Clares, she turned to the antipope, Benedict XIII (Pedro de Luna), then recognized by France as the rightful pope. Benedict allowed her to enter to the order of Poor Clares and empowered her by several Bulls, dated 1406, 1407, 1408, and 1412 to found new convents and complete the reform of the order. With the approval of the Countess of Geneva and the Franciscan Henri de la Beaume, her confessor and spiritual guide, Colette began her work at Beaume, in the Diocese of Geneva. She remained there but a short time and soon opened at Besancon her first convent in an almost abandoned house of Urbanist Poor Clares. Thence her reform spread to Auxonne (1410), to Poligny, to Ghent (1412), to Heidelberg (1444), to Amiens, etc. To the seventeen convents founded during her lifetime must be added another begun by her at Pont-a-Mousson in Lorraine. She also inaugurated a reform among the Franciscan friars (the Coletani), not to be confounded with the Observants. These Coletani remained obedient to the authority of the provincial of the Franciscan convents, and never attained much importance even in France. In 1448 they had only thirteen convents, and together with other small branches of the Franciscan Order were suppressed in 1417 by Leo X. In addition to the strict rules of the Poor Clares, the Colettines follow their special constitutions sanctioned in 1434 by the General of the Franciscans, William of Casale, approved in 1448 by Nicholas V, in 1458 by Pius II, and in 1482 by Sixtus IV.

St. Colette was beatified 23 January, 1740, and canonized 24 May, 1807. She was not only a woman of sincere piety, but also intelligent and energetic, and exercised a remarkable moral power over all her associates. She was very austere and mortified in her life, for which God rewarded her by supernatural favours and the gift of miracles. For the convents reformed by her she prescribed extreme poverty, to go barefooted, and the observance of perpetual fast and abstinence. The Colettine Sisters are found today, outside of France, in Belgium, Germany, Spain, England, and the United States.


source: http://www.ewtn.com/saintsHoly/saints/C/stcoletteofcorbie.asp#ixzz1oKKaVjSv
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