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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

CATHOLIC NEWS WORLD : TUESDAY JUNE 18, 2012





 
PAPAL MESSAGE CLOSES FIFTIETH INTERNATIONAL EUCHARISTIC CONGRESS IN DUBLIN (IMAGE SOURCE: IEC)
Vatican City, 18 June 2012 (VIS) - A video message from Benedict XVI, transmitted at the end of a Mass attended by thousands of people in Dublin yesterday evening, brought to a close the fiftieth International Eucharistic Congress. The Congress - which was held in the Irish capital over the course of last week on the theme: "The Eucharist. Communion with Christ and with One Another" - coincided with the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of Vatican Council II, and the choice of theme was associated with that anniversary, as the Holy Father explained in his message, extracts of which are given below.

"From the earliest times the notion of 'koinonia' or 'communio' has been at the core of the Church’s understanding of herself, her relationship to Christ her founder, and the Sacraments she celebrates, above all the Eucharist. Through our Baptism, we are incorporated into Christ’s death, reborn into the great family of the brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ; through Confirmation we receive the seal of the Holy Spirit; and by our sharing in the Eucharist, we come into communion with Christ and each other visibly here on earth. We also receive the pledge of eternal life to come.
"The Congress also occurs at a time when the Church throughout the world is preparing to celebrate the Year of Faith to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the start of the Vatican Council II, an event which launched the most extensive renewal of the Roman Rite ever known. Based upon a deepening appreciation of the sources of the liturgy, the Council promoted the full and active participation of the faithful in the Eucharistic sacrifice. At our distance today from the Council Fathers’ expressed desires regarding liturgical renewal, and in the light of the universal Church’s experience in the intervening period, it is clear that a great deal has been achieved; but it is equally clear that there have been many misunderstandings and irregularities. The renewal of external forms, desired by the Council Fathers, was intended to make it easier to enter into the inner depth of the mystery. Its true purpose was to lead people to a personal encounter withthe Lord, present in the Eucharist, and thus with the living God, so that through this contact with Christ’s love, the love of His brothers and sisters for one another might also grow. Yet not infrequently, the revision of liturgical forms has remained at an external level, and “active participation” has been confused with external activity. Hence much still remains to be done on the path of real liturgical renewal. In a changed world, increasingly fixated on material things, we must learn to recognise anew the mysterious presence of the Risen Lord, which alone can give breadth and depth to our life.
"The Eucharist is the worship of the whole Church, but it also requires the full engagement of each individual Christian in the Church’s mission; it contains a call to be the holy people of God, but also one to individual holiness; it is to be celebrated with great joy and simplicity, but also as worthily and reverently as possible; it invites us to repent of our sins, but also to forgive our brothers and sisters; it binds us together in the Spirit, but it also commands us in the same Spirit to bring the good news of salvation to others.
"Moreover, the Eucharist is the memorial of Christ’s sacrifice on the Cross, His body and blood given in the new and eternal covenant for the forgiveness of sins and the transformation of the world. Ireland has been shaped by the Mass at the deepest level for centuries, and by its power and grace generations of monks, martyrs and missionaries have heroically lived the faith at home and spread the Good News of God’s love and forgiveness well beyond your shores. You are the heirs to a Church that has been a mighty force for good in the world, and which has given a profound and enduring love of Christ and His blessed Mother to many, many others. Your forebears in the Church in Ireland knew how to strive for holiness and constancy in their personal lives, how to preach the joy that comes from the Gospel, how to promote the importance of belonging to the universal Church in communion with the See of Peter, and how to pass on a love of the faith andChristian virtue to other generations. Our Catholic faith, imbued with a radical sense of God’s presence, caught up in the beauty of His creation all around us, and purified through personal penance and awareness of God’s forgiveness, is a legacy that is surely perfected and nourished when regularly placed on the Lord’s altar at the sacrifice of the Mass.
"Thankfulness and joy at such a great history of faith and love have recently been shaken in an appalling way by the revelation of sins committed by priests and consecrated persons against people entrusted to their care. Instead of showing them the path towards Christ, towards God, instead of bearing witness to His goodness, they abused people and undermined the credibility of the Church’s message. How are we to explain the fact that people who regularly received the Lord’s body and confessed their sins in the Sacrament of Penance have offended in this way? It remains a mystery. Yet evidently, their Christianity was no longer nourished by joyful encounter with Jesus Christ: it had become merely a matter of habit. The work of the Council was really meant to overcome this form of Christianity and to rediscover the faith as a deep personal friendship with the goodness of Jesus Christ. The Eucharistic Congress has a similar aim. Here we wish toencounter the Risen Lord. We ask Him to touch us deeply. May He who breathed on the Apostles at Easter, communicating his Spirit to them, likewise bestow upon us His breath, the power of the Holy Spirit, and so help us to become true witnesses to His love, witnesses to the truth. His truth is love. Christ’s love is truth.
"My dear brothers and sisters, I pray that the Congress will be for each of you a spiritually fruitful experience of communion with Christ and his Church. At the same time, I would like to invite you to join me in praying for God’s blessing upon the next International Eucharistic Congress, which will take place in 2016 in the city of Cebu! To the people of the Philippines I send warm greetings and an assurance of my closeness in prayer during the period of preparation for this great ecclesial gathering".





THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS A GIFT, BUT IT REQUIRES OUR COLLABORATION
Vatican City, 17 June 2012 (VIS) - At midday today Benedict XVI appeared at the window of his study to pray the Angelus with faithful gathered below in St. Peter's Square. The Pope commented on the two brief parables in today's Gospel reading: that of the seed which grows while the farmer sleeps, and that of the mustard seed. "Through these images taken from the world of agriculture", he explained, "the Lord presents the mystery of the Word and the Kingdom of God, and indicates the reasons for our hope and our commitment.
"In the first parable, the focus is on the dynamism of the seed which, scattered on the ground, sprouts and grows by itself, whether the farmer sleeps or is awake. ... What supports the farmer in his daily efforts is his trust in the power of the seed and in the goodness of the earth. This parable recalls the mystery ... of God's fruitful work in history. He is Lord of the Kingdom, and man is His humble collaborator who contemplates and is gladdened by the divine creative act, and patiently awaits its fruits. ... Now is the time to sow, and the growth of the seed is guaranteed by the Lord. All Christians, then, know that they must do everything they can, but that the final result depends upon God: this knowledge sustains them in their daily trials, especially in moments of difficulty".
The Holy Father went on to note that the second parable mentions a specific plant, "the mustard seed, which is considered to be the smallest of all seeds". Nonetheless, "despite its diminutive size it is full of life and, when it splits, a shoot is born which is capable of breaking the earth ... and growing until it 'becomes the greatest of all shrubs'. ... Such is the Kingdom of God: small in human terms, ... being made up of those who do not trust in their own strength but in that of God's love, of those who are unimportant in the eyes of the world, yet through them the power of Christ breaks forth and transforms that which is apparently insignificant.
"The image of the seed was particularly dear to Jesus", the Pope added in conclusion, "because it well express the mystery of the Kingdom of God. In today's two parables it represents 'growth' and 'contrast': the growth that comes about thanks to the dynamism intrinsic to the seed itself, and the contrast that exists between the smallness of the seed and the greatness it produces. The message is clear: the Kingdom of God, though it requires our collaboration, is above all a gift of God, a grace which precedes man and his works. Our weak strength, apparently impotent before the problems of the world, if united to that of God fears no obstacles, because the victory of the Lord is certain".





POPE CALLS FOR REFUGEES' RIGHTS TO BE RESPECTED
Vatican City, 17 June 2012 (VIS) - After praying the Angelus today, the Pope made some remarks about World Refugee Day, an initiative promoted by the United Nations which is celebrated on 20 June. "It seeks to draw the attention of the international community to the situation of so many people, especially families, who are forced to flee their own lands because threatened by armed conflict and serious forms of violence", the Holy Father said. "I assure these severely tried brothers and sisters of the Holy See's prayers and constant solicitude, at the same time expressing the hope that their rights may always be respected and that they may soon be able to be reunited with their loved ones".
The Pope went on: "Today in Ireland marks the closing celebration of the International Eucharistic Congress which, over the last week, has made Dublin the city of the Eucharist, as many people gathered in prayer in the presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament. Jesus chose to remain among us in the mystery of the Eucharist, to bring us into communion with Him and with one another", he said.
Finally the Holy Father mentioned Cecilia Eusepi, who will be beatified this afternoon in the Italian town of Nepi. "She wanted to become a missionary, but was forced to abandon her convent due to illness" and died at the age of eighteen. "Her faith was unshakeable, and she showed a great capacity to sacrifice herself for the salvation of souls".





INTERNATIONAL THEOLOGICAL COMMISSION RENEWS ITS WEBPAGE
Vatican City, 16 June 2012 (VIS) - In a communique made public today the International Theological Commission announces that it has updated its webpage. The page is to be found on the Vatican website (www.vatican.va) under the section dedicated to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
The International Theological Commission, established by Paul VI in 1969, assists the Holy See, and in particular the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, in examining the most important and pressing doctrinal issues. It is made up of theologians from various schools and nations, who stand out for their depth of knowledge and their fidelity to Church Magisterium. The members of the Commission - who number no more than thirty - are appointed by the Holy Father for a period of five years, at the suggestion of the cardinal prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and after consulting episcopal conferences. Over the course of its history the Commission has, with the approval of its president, published twenty-five documents.
The new webpage opens with a brief historical overview of the institution (Profile), followed by the provisional Statutes of 12 July 1969 and the definitive Statues of 6 August 1982 (Statutes). The page also contains a listing of members of the Commission (List of the Members).
The most important part of the page is the collection of the twenty-five documents published by the Commission. Most of them are in seven languages - French, English, Spanish, German, Italian, Latin and Polish - although some are also available in Portuguese, Dutch, Hungarian, Russian and Czech. This collection is due to expand as new language versions of the texts are produced (Published Documents).
The webpage contains information about collected editions of the documents in various languages, as well as a list of papal addresses made to the members of the Commission (Pontifical Speeches). A further section (Documents) includes various contributions relative to the work and publications of the Commission, especially comments and clarifications.
The Commission hopes that the renewed webpage may help and stimulate consultation of documents, first and foremost by pastors, theologians, priests and consecrated persons, as well as students and other faithful throughout the world, particularly in places where it is not easy to access publications of those texts.





AUDIENCES
Vatican City, 18 June 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in audience:
- Eduardo Gutierrez Saenz de Buruaga, the new Spanish ambassador to the Holy See, for the presentation of his Letters of Credence.
- Cardinal Jaime Lucas Ortega y Alamino, archbishop of San Cristobal de la Habana, Cuba.
- Ten prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Colombia, on their "ad limina" visit:
- Archbishop Oscar Urbina Ortega of Villavicencio.
- Bishop Jose Figueroa Gomez of Granada en Colombia.
- Bishop Francisco Antonio Nieto Sua of San Jose del Guaviare.
- Bishop Antonio Bayter Abud M.X.Y., apostolic vicar of Inirida.
- Msgr. Damian E. Chavarria Carvajal, pro apostolic vicar of Mitu.
- Bishop Jose de Jesus Quintero Diaz, apostolic vicar of Leticia.
- Bishop Francisco Antonio Ceballos Escobar, apostolic vicar of Puerto Carreno.
- Msgr. Oswaldo Jaramillo Osorio, pro apostolic vicar of Puerto Gaitan.
- Bishop Eulises Gonzalez Sanchez, apostolic vicar of San Andres y Providencia.
- Bishop Edgar Hernando Tirado Mazo M.X.Y., apostolic vicar of Tierradentro.
On Saturday 16 June the Holy Father received in audience:
- Cardinal Fernado Filoni, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples.
- Archbishop Lorenzo Baldisseri, secretary of the Congregation for Bishops.
- Six prelates from the Episcopal Conference of Colombia, on their "ad limina" visit:
- Archbishop Flavio Calle Zapata of Ibague.
- Bishop Pablo Emiro Sales Anteliz of Espinal.
- Bishop Jose Miguel Gomez Rodriguez of Libano-Honda.
- Bishop Froilan Tiberio Casas Ortiz of Neiva.
- Bishop Francisco Javier Munera Correa I.M.C., apostolic vicar of San Vicente - Puerto Leguizamo.
- Msgr. Obed Ramirez Granada, diocesan administrator of Florencia.
- Cardinal Paul Josef Cordes, president emeritus of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum".





ACTS CONCERNING THE ORIENTAL CHURCHES
Vatican City, 16 June 2012 (VIS) - The Patriarch of Antioch of the Maronites, with the consent of the Synod of Bishops of the Maronite Church meeting pursuant to canon 85 paragraph 2 (2) of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, has transferred:
- Bishop Camille Zaidan, bishop of the Patriarchal Curia, to the office of archbishop of Antelias of the Maronites (Catholics 156,028, priests 162, religious 353), Lebanon. He succeeds Archbishop Youssef Bechara, who resigned from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese in accordance with canon 210 para. 1-2 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.
- Bishop Francois Eid O.M.M., eparchal vicar of Cairo, Egypt, and of Sudan of the Maronites, to the office of patriarchal procurator before the Holy See, having received prior pontifical assent. Bishop Eid will receive the tile of eparchal bishop emeritus of his former eparchy, under the terms of canon 211 para. 1 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.
The Synod of Bishops of the Maronite Church has elected the following archbishops and bishops, all of whom have received prior assent from the Holy Father:
- Fr. Moussa El-Hage O.A.M., superior of the convent of Sts. Sarkis and Bacchus in Edhen and Zghorta, as archbishop of Haifa and the Holy Land of the Maronites (Catholics 7,000, priests 11, religious 9), Israel, and as patriarchal exarch of Jerusalem and Palestine (Catholics 504, permanent deacons 1) and Jordan (Catholics 1,500, priests 2). The bishop-elect was born in Antoura, Lebanon in 1954 and ordained a priest in 1980. He studied in Jerusalem and in Rome and has held various offices in his religious order as well as being active in pastoral work and education. He succeeds Archbishop Paul Nabil El-Sayah, who had earlier resigned from the pastoral care of those circumscriptions to take up the office of bishop of the Patriarchal Curia.
- Fr. Paul Rouhana O.L.M., secretary of the Middle East Council of Churches, as bishop of the patriarchal vicariate of Sarba, Lebanon. The bishop-elect was born in Amchit, Lebanon in 1954 and ordained a priest in 1982. He studied in Belgium and in France and been active in education at "Saint Esprit" University in Kaslik. He succeeds Bishop Guy-Paul Noujaim, who resigned from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese in accordance with canon 210 para. 1-2 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.
- Fr. Maroun Ammar, rector of the major seminary of Ghazir, as bishop of the patriarchal vicariate of Joubbe, Lebanon. The bishop-elect was born in Haje, Lebanon in 1956 and ordained a priest in 1983. He has served as pastor in various parishes and is a judge at the Court of Appeal of the Maronite Tribunal of Lebanon. He succeeds Bishop Francis Baissari, who resigned from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese in accordance with canon 210 para. 1-2 of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.
- Fr. Joseph Mouawad, vicar general of the eparchy of Jbeil-Byblos, Lebanon, as bishop of the Patriarchal Curia. The bishop-elect was born in Mayfouq, Lebanon in 1970 and ordained a priest in 1995. He studied in Rome and has been active in pastoral work, as well as teaching theology at "La Sagesse" University in Beirut and "Saint Esprit" University in Kaslik.
- Fr. Georges Chihane, patriarchal administrator of Haifa and the Holy Land of the Maronites, Israel, and patriarchal exarch of Jerusalem, Palestine and Jordan, as eparchal vicar of Cairo, Egypt and Sudan of the Maronites (Catholics 5,500, priests 6, religious 3). The bishop-elect was born in Haret Sakhr, Lebanon in 1953 and ordained a priest in 1979. He has served as pastor in various parishes in Lebanon, France and Jordan.

AMERICA : MEXICO : BISHOP CAUTIONS VOTERS

Agenzia Fides REPORT - Two weeks before the presidential election, Mgr. Raul Vera Lopez, Bishop of the Diocese of Saltillo, has launched an appeal urging the people not to sell their vote, because the corruption that occurs with such action, will also mark the management of those who manage to obtain the victory. In the note sent to Fides Agency, we read the words of the Bishop: "Do not sell your vote, it is a moral issue. When you get to a government position through bribery, corruption remains, there will still be corruption." Mgr. Vera Lopez underlines that "it exists, and you can see a lot of corruption in public organizations", and it is a situation that reflects the degree of impunity that prevails. "There is impunity because in cases of disappearances, murders, crimes, robberies and beatings, no one gives an answer." In this regard, he said it is outrageous to hear that those who now struggle for power, want to prove that they will put an end to corruption, just when "we have been seeing it, feeling it, living it and breathing it, for a long time and every day." Mexico prepares for the presidential elections on July 1 (see Fides 12/6/2012) and there is still confusion concerning the procedure at the time of the vote because, despite the protests, no one explains to people what they have to do. (CE)

AUSTRALIA : TECHNOLOGY - MIGRANTS CONNECT TO LOST FAMILIES

ARCHDIOCESE OF SYDNEY RELEASE:
Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese,
19 Jun 2012


Half a million Forgotten Children were
brought up in care, orphanages or
as state wards
Leading historians, archivists and experts in child welfare from the Australian Catholic University (ACU) and the University of Melbourne are using ground-breaking technology for a national website and records database to help British Child Migrants, Forgotten Australians and the Stolen Generation discover their history and reconnect with their families.
In June last year the Federal Government gave a $3 million grant to the eight-member team from ACU and the University of Melbourne to develop the web resource as the first phase of the commitment the Government made at the 2009 National Apology to the 500,000-plus Forgotten Australians, child migrants and members of the Stolen Generation, many of whom suffered terrible abuse and neglect throughout the twentieth century while in out-of-home care.
The idea of a Find & Connect national web resource was not only to provide an archival database to help those children who had been taken from their parents as youngsters discover their personal and family histories and hopefully be reunited with their parents, siblings or extended families, but to put them in touch with professional counselling support services.


Gavin McCarthy of eScholarship
at Melbourne University has
developed the cutting edge
technology used by Find & Connect
"The web resources project represents the practical coming together of historians, archivists and social workers to address the healing needs of children who grew up in out-of-home care," says Dr Nell Musgrove and expert in child welfare history who leads the team from ACU.
Despite most of the members of the two universities involved in the project having worked as historians and child welfare over a number of years, the Find & Connect web resource initiative was ambitious. But by November last year, the website and a wide range of resources and archival data was up and running and online.
"We thought it might take three years to get traction but hoped as word spread this would gradually change," admits Dr Cathy Humphreys, Professor of Social Work at the University of Melbourne who is a member of the Find & Connect project.
However in the first six months on-line, 57,522 have visited the website. There have also been 378,875 page views and visitors but these are expected to double by the end of the year.
"This is way beyond our expectations," says Dr Humphreys who describes everyone on the team as "very excited by the response."

Promised oranges and sunshine, the
reality for UK child migrants was brutal,
lonely and grim
However it is not only the number of visits from people exploring archives, searching for documents and discovering their own personal histories that is so encouraging, but the information and feedback Find & Connect is receiving.
"We have a form people can fill in that can steer us into other directions. At the moment we have lots of bits and pieces but it is those using the site that are helping us pull it all together. Someone may suggest we look further in a certain direction or give us a useful entry we didn't know about, that leads to other key records and historical details," she says.
Increased awareness about the Forgotten Children and UK child migrants has also helped, she says and cites 2010 British film, "Oranges and Sunshine" about the Nottingham social worker, Margaret Humphrey who exposed the UK's shocking policy of child migration in the 1980s.
From 1938 onwards, children some of whom were just three years old, were taken from their mothers and fathers, often without the parent's consent or even knowledge, and shipped half a world away to Australia. Reasons for this practice which saw children from 3 to 14 brought up far from their families and homeland in often brutal abusive institutions where they were used as cheap farm and domestic labour were largely based on the pre-World War II idea of filling a sparsely- populated Australia with "good white British stock."

Professor Cathy Humphreys
one of the team behind Find
& Connect web services
The practice continued until the 1970s with the children traumatised and having no records of their birth or who their families were without a sense of identity or self worth. Their families back in England were frequently told their son or daughter had died and had no idea they had instead been shipped thousands of kilometres to Australia.
It was the same with the Forgotten Children, Professor Humphreys says of the hundreds of thousands of youngsters forced into bleak grim institutional care in orphanages, foster care or as wards of the state throughout the previous century, and who like the British Child Migrants grew up with no idea of who they were and with no knowledge of their families, and often no idea of what it was like to be loved.
"Many of their stories are heartbreaking and tragic and we need to be able to help them debrief by talking over what happened to them, what they saw and what they experienced," says Professor Humphreys says.
Although there have been several organisations established to help Child Migrants and the Forgotten Children, including the Child Migrant Trust founded by social worker, Margaret Humphreys' in 1987, she says federal funding has enabled each state to bring all the different resources and elements, build on what support services are already available to create even better services.

Cheap farm and domestic labour was
often the fate for Australia's Forgotten
Children in care
"The web resource it is world breaking cutting edge technology developed here in Melbourne which makes resource so unique," she says.
The technology has been developed by Gavin McCarthy at eScholarship Research Centre at the University of Melbourne and leads the world in heritage record management and archival data bases.
"I have been to overseas conferences recently in the UK and the US where everyone has been very impressed as the technology isn't yet available internationally," Professor Humphreys explains.
The technology enables Find & Connect to be easily expanded and updated and is simple for visitors to the site to navigate whether they are hunting for birth records, old photographs or archives from orphanages run by the State as well as Anglican, Catholic and other Church institutions.
Each week the website and its resources continues to grow. But already the impact of Find & Connect has been profound and has managed to reunite some former Child Migrants or Forgotten Children with their families and siblings, as well as with one another.
The Find and Connect website is at http://www.findandconnect.gov.au/
SHARED FROM ARCHDIOCESE OF SYDNEY

AFRICA : SOUTH SUDAN : ONGOING CLASHES

CISA NEWS REPORT:
SOUTH KORDOFAN, June 15, 2012 (CISA) -In South Kordofan, the Sudanese Armed Forces and Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North have been struggling for a year over control of the territory. But the clashes are taking their toll not only on the government army and rebels, but also on civilians as tens of thousands have been forced to flee to refugee camps.
Claudio Gramizzi, an independent researcher who writes reports for the Switzerland-based Small Arms Survey, has just returned from the region. He describes abandoned fields, where farmers have not been cultivating crops for fear of getting hit by aerial bomb attacks from the SAF. If the attacks continue, farmers will likely miss the planting season this year, too.
And as far as getting supplies from the single road to South Sudan, Gramizzi says an already difficult trip is about to become impossible.
“I actually had to travel from the border to Juba by car myself, and it took me three days. There were already a lot of vehicles blocked in the mud, so the expectation is basically you have another couple of rains and the road will be blocked for at least three months,” he says.
Ryan Boyette, an American who lives in South Kordofan and is married to a Nuba woman, confirms that people there are barely surviving. “Whether they’re in their homes or in caves, they’re all picking leaves of certain trees that they boil for hours and eat.”
Boyette, who is sympathetic to the SPLM-N, and Gramizzi both say the Sudanese government has not allowed humanitarian aid organizations to bring food and other supplies into the region. Gramizzi says that is because Khartoum is trying to force civilians to move into government-controlled territory.
According to VOA, Ryan Boyette says those measures do not seem to be working to Khartoum’s benefit. “When Sudanese Armed Forces comes into a village and completely burns down houses or does aerial bombardments on villages, it enrages the people that are living here. And they end up joining the SPLM-North to fight against their government.”
According to VOA, Claudio Gramizzi says the SPLM-N appears to be controlling the region, and that morale is high.
Knowing what’s happening on the SAF side is harder, he says. But it appeared to him that even though Sudan had airplanes and helicopters, they did not have trained soldiers or new recruits.
SHARED FROM CISA NEWS

ASIA : INDIA : CHRISTIANS ATTACKED BY EXTREMISTS

ASIA NEWS REPORT:
by Nirmala Carvalho
The pastor of a Pentecostal Church and 12 families of his community were seriously wounded, in the district of Balasore. The police seized explosives and dynamite in another district (Puri) of Orissa. According to the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), Hindu nationalists are preparing a "diabolical plan" to repeat the 2008 violence of Kandhamal.


Mumbai (AsiaNews) - A new "brutal attack" in Orissa, which responds to a "diabolical plan": this is how Sajan George, president of the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), defines the violent assault committed by more than 50 Hindu ultranationalists against Evangelist Baidhare, the pastor of the Pentecostal Fellowship Prayer group, and 12 families of his community. The violence took place in the district of Balasore. According to the GCIC president, the attack "is meant to terrify the Christian minority. They want to repeat what happened in 2008, with the anti-Christian pogroms in the Kandhamal district." Confirming this hypothesis was the discovery of some handmade explosives in another district of the state.

On June 15, a group of Hindu nationalists attacked and seriously injured the Rev. Baidhar, 50, while he was returning home in the village of Mitrapur after a prayer service. The attackers left the minister on the ground, bleeding. Shortly after, some believers found him and took him to a local hospital to receive the necessary treatment.

When the Hindus found out that Rev. Baidhar had been rescued, about 50 of them attacked 12 Christian families, injuring 20 people, young and old, and attempted to rape a few girls. Not content with that, the attackers looted their homes. Following the attack, many members of these families vanished into thin air, and there has been no news of them since. The suspicion is that they are hiding in the jungle, as happened in 2008 in Kandhamal. Sajan George says that the GCIC in Bhubaneshwar only discovered what had happened on June 16, and immediately denounced the events to the police of Nilgiri.

A few days before, in the district of Puri (Orissa), the local police at Brahmagiri seized more than 50 homemade bombs and 12 charges of dynamite, hidden in a hut in the village of Gambhari. According to police, the explosives found would have been used to organize a new anti-Christian pogrom to take place a short time afterwards, similar to the attacks in Kandhamal in 2008.

Between December 2007 and August 2008, Hindu ultranationalists killed 93 people, burned and looted more than 6,500 homes, and destroyed over 350 churches and 45 schools. Because of the pogroms, in 2008 more than 50 thousand people, mostly Christians, were displaced. Today, there are still 10,000 refugees. The Church in Orissa has always initiated assistance and reconstruction programs, aimed at both Christians and Hindus.

SHARED FROM ASIA NEWS

EUROPE : CLOSING HOMILY OF EUCHARISTIC CONGRESS

Closing homily by Cardinal Ouellet at IEC2012  | losing homily by Cardinal Ouellet at IEC2012

Cardinal Ouellet with Father Ciarán O'Carroll, Rector, Irish Pontifical College, Rome
IND. CATH> NEWS REPORT: Dear brothers and sisters,
The fiftieth occurrence of the International Eucharistic Congress is now coming to a close. We are deeply grateful to God for the light of His Word and for the gift of the Holy Eucharist, which strengthen our communion with Christ and with one another.
At the end of this celebration we will listen to the message of Pope Benedict XVI. His speaking to us reminds us that this International Eucharistic Congress bears witness to the Catholic Church as the universal communion of many particular Churches. The Bishops, priests, religious and lay faithful here represent the Catholic Church which is found throughout the world in thousands of communities, but which is one in faith and love of Jesus Christ. I greet the ecumenical representatives and I thank you all for being part of this grace-filled event.
I greet the President of Ireland, and all the civil authorities, fondly aware of the noble tradition of this courageous nation. I thank wholeheartedly Archbishop Martin, Cardinal Brady and all the collaborators of this event for the gift of their warm hospitality and for the example of their strong dedication to Christian renewal in this country.
In order to prepare ourselves to listen to the Holy Father’s message, let us briefly reflect on today’s readings, which bring us a message of great hope and confidence.
Through the prophet Ezekiel the Lord says, “From the top of the cedar, from the highest branch I will take a shoot and plant it myself on a very high mountain. I will plant it on the high mountain of Israel. It will sprout branches and bear fruit, and become a noble cedar” (Ez. 17:22-23).
In the Gospel, Jesus uses a similar image to speak about the Kingdom of God: “[The kingdom] is like a mustard seed which at the time of its sowing in the soil is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet once it is sown it grows into the biggest shrub of them all and puts out big branches so that the birds of the air can shelter in its shade” (Mk. 4:31-32).
We understand the prophecy of Ezekiel in the light of Christ. Jesus Christ is the shoot taken from the highest branch, he is God from God, and planted by God himself on a very high mountain, which is Calvary.
God the Father has planted on Calvary the seed of the Cross out of love for his creation and for all sinners. The seed of the Cross is the Sacred Heart of His only begotten Son, pierced to death by our sins, but raised up from death by the power of divine mercy. Therefore Christ Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. He is the Holy Redeemer in whom we trust and find salvation. The seed of Christ’s love, buried in the ground of Calvary, produced an unimaginable fruit: a tree, the Tree of Life, a noble cedar which is the Holy Church of God, the dawn of the Kingdom. We believe in the one, holy, Catholic and apostolic Church, because we believe in Christ who wills the Church to be His body, born from the self-gift of His Eucharistic Body.
Dear brothers and sisters, let us rejoice and be full of confidence. “We are full of confidence” (2 Cor. 5:6), as St. Paul says to the Corinthians. We are so because the risen Lord is our home and our safety. We do experience limitations and failures in the Church, but the Lord sustains us, healing our wounds and strengthening our love. Let us rejoice in Him and be glad!
We can rely on the Lord for a new beginning. St. Paul gives us the key for any personal or ecclesial renewal: “We are intent on pleasing Him” (2 Cor. 5:6). This key to renewal in our lives is a decision to recommit ourselves to love the Lord and to live and to die for Him, knowing that His grace will never fail. May the upcoming Year of Faith strengthen in us this decision!
Jesus is the seed sowed by God Himself in the depths of the earth, a seed that fell to the earth, died and was raised to eternal life. From this smallest seed of salvation comes the Tree of Life, the Church, in which all of humanity is called to find a home and safety in the company of the risen Lord.
For this very reason, the Church is called, and we are called, to bear witness to the Lord by pleasing Him, that is, preaching the Gospel, living in fraternity and praising God for the gift of salvation.
After this week of Eucharistic reflection, celebration and adoration, we are certainly more aware of God’s call to communion with Him and with one another.
Let us bear witness to this grace by calling others to faith in this communion. The Irish bell, which resounds from Lough Derg, from Knock and Dublin, must resound in the whole world. Let’s ring the bell further through our personal testimony of renewed faith in the Holy Eucharist.
Faith is the most precious gift we have received with Baptism. Let’s not keep it private and fearful! Let it grow as a splendid tree through sharing everywhere!
Even if we are sometimes tested in our faith, do not be afraid, and remember who we are: the body of Christ intent on loving God over and above all things, intent on living in the Spirit of the new and eternal covenant.
We are not alone; the Spirit of Pentecost dwells in us. The communion of saints, with Mary at its heart, comes to our assistance as soon as we have rung the bell of prayer in total confidence. Keep hope and be glad, for the kingdom of God is near!
Dear brothers and sisters, at the end of this Mass we will listen to the Holy Father’s message for the conclusion of this Congress. Let us listen to him with great respect and gratitude since he is our spiritual father, a father who is holy and worthy of our trust and sincere obedience.
May our communion with the Body of Christ be a new bond of love; a small seed perhaps, but, by God’s grace and divine mercy, a fruitful one.
Together we pray the words of Saint Ephrem, deacon and doctor of the Church: “Lord … we have had your treasure hidden within us ever since we received baptismal grace; it grows ever richer at your sacramental table. Teach us to find our joy in your favour! Lord, we have within us your memorial, received at your spiritual table; let us possess it in its full reality when all things shall be made new” (Sermo 3, De fine et admonitione 2. 4-5). Amen!
SHARED FROM IEC
/ IND. CATH. NEWS

TODAY'S MASS ONLINE : MONDAY JUNE 18, 2012


Matthew 5: 43 - 48
43 "You have heard that it was said, `You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.'
44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,
45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
46 For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?
47 And if you salute only your brethren, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same?
48 You, therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

TODAY'S SAINT : JUNE 18 : ST. ELIZABETH OF SCHOENAU

St. Elizabeth of Schoenau
BENEDICTINE ABBESS AND MYSTIC
Feast: June 18


Information:
Feast Day: June 18
Born: 1129 at Germany
Died: 18 June 1165 at Bonn, Germany
Patron of: against temptations
Born about 1129; d. 18 June, 1165.-Feast 18 June. She was born of an obscure family, entered the double monastery of Schönau in Nassau at the age of twelve, received the Benedictine habit, made her profession in 1147, and in 1157 was superioress of the nuns under the Abbot Hildelin. After her death she was buried in the abbey church of St. Florin. When her writings were published the name of saint was added. She was never formally canonized, but in 1584 her name was entered in the Roman Martyrology and has remained there.

Given to works of piety from her youth, much afflicted with bodily and mental suffering, a zealous observer of the Rule of St. Benedict and of the regulation of her convent, and devoted to practices of mortification, Elizabeth was favoured, from 1152, with ecstasies and visions of various kinds. These generally occurred on Sundays and Holy Days at Mass or Divine Office or after hearing or reading the lives of saints. Christ, His Blessed Mother, an angel, or the special saint of the day would appear to her and instruct her; or she would see quite realistic representations of the Passion, Resurrection, and Ascension, or other scenes of the Old and New Testaments. What she saw and heard she put down on wax tablets. Her abbot, Hildelin, told her to relate these things to her brother Egbert (Eckebert), then priest at the church of Bonn. At first she hesitated fearing lest she be deceived or be looked upon as a deceiver; but she obeyed. Egbert (who became a monk of Schönau in 1155 and succeeded Hildelin as second abbot) put everything in writing, later arranged the material at leisure, and then published all under his sister's name.

Thus came into existence

* three books of "Visions". Of these the first is written in language very simple and in unaffected style, so that it may easily pass as the work of Elizabeth. The other two are more elaborate and replete with theological terminology, so that they show more of the work of Egbert than of Elizabeth.

* "Liber viarum Dei". This seems to be an imitation of the "Scivias" (scire vias Domini) of St. Hildegarde of Bingen, her friend and correspondent. It contains admonitions to all classes of society, to the clergy and laity, to the married and unmarried. Here the influence of Egbert is very plain. She utters prophetic threats of judgment against priests who are unfaithful shepherds of the flock of Christ, against the avarice and worldliness of the monks who only wear the garb of poverty and self-denial, against the vices of the laity, and against bishops and superiors delinquent in their duty; she urges all to combat earnestly the heresy of the Cathari; she declares Victor IV, the antipope supported by Frederick against Alexander III, as the one chosen of God. All of this appears in Egbert's own writings.

* The revelation on the martyrdom of St. Ursula and her companions. This is full of fantastic exaggerations and anachronisms, but has become the foundation of the subsequent Ursula legends.

There is a great diversity of opinion in regard to her revelations. The Church has never passed sentence upon them nor even examined them. Elizabeth herself was convinced of their supernatural character, as she states in a letter to Hildegarde; her brother held the same opinion; Trithemius considers them genuine; Eusebius Amort (De revelationibus visionibus et apparitionibus privatis regulae tutae, etc., Augsburg, 1744) holds them to be nothing more than what Elizabeth's own imagination could produce, or illusions of the devil, since in some things they disagree with history and with other revelations (Acta SS., Oct, IX, 81). A complete edition of her writings was made by F.W.E. Roth (Brunn, 1884); translations appeared in Italian (Venice, 1859), French (Tournai, 1864), and in Icelandic (1226-1254).

(Taken from Catholic Encyclopedia)


source: http://www.ewtn.com/saintsHoly/saints/E/stelizabethofschoenau.asp#ixzz1y8bGfFK8



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