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Friday, August 31, 2012

CATHOLIC NEWS WORLD FRIDAY AUGUST 31, 2012

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
VATICAN : POPE PRAYS FOR POLITICIANS - RIP CARDINAL MARTINI
NOVENA FOR BIRTH OF VIRGIN MARY - DAY 2 - PLENARY INDULGENCE
TODAY'S MASS ONLINE FRIDAY AUGUST 31, 2012
AMERICA : PAUL RYAN SPEECH FROM GOP CONVENTION
AMERICA : FR. GROESCHEL 'S COMMENTS - APOLOGY FROM ARCHDIOCESE
EUROPE : YOUTH 2000 A SUCCESS - BRIEF HISTORY  
AFRICA : TANZANIA : RIP BISHOP KIKOTI - AGE 55  
AUSTRALIA : OVER 450 AT CATHOLIC YOUTH LEADERS CONVENTION
TODAY' S SAINT: AUG. 31: ST. RAYMOND NONNATUS: DIED 1240
 
VATICAN : POPE PRAYS FOR POLITICIANS - RIP CARDINAL MARTINI
RADIO VATICANA REPORT: Below please find the complete text of Pope Benedict XVI's telegram of condolence for the death of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini:
Having heard with sadness the news of the death of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini after a long illness, which he lived with a tranquil soul and with confident abandonment to the will of the Lord, I wish to express to you and to the entire diocesan community, as well as to the family of the late Cardinal, my profound share in their sorrow, recalling with affection this dear brother who served the Gospel and the Church so generously. I recall with gratitude the intense and profuse Apostolic work of this zealous, spiritual child of St. Ignatius, an expert teacher, an authoritative biblical scholar, and a beloved Rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University and of the Pontifical Biblical Institute, and a wise and diligent Archbishop of the Ambrosian Archdiocese. I think also of the competent and fervent service he gave to the Word of God, always opening to the ecclesial community the treasures of the Sacred Scriptures, especially through the promotion of Lectio Divina. I raise fervent prayers to the Lord that, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, He will receive His faithful servant and worthy shepherd into the heavenly Jerusalem; and upon all those who mourn his death, I warmly impart the comfort of the Apostolic Blessing.

Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, the retired Archbishop of Milan died on the afternoon of Friday, 31 August 2012, after a long illness. He was 85.

In a telegram to Cardinal Angelo Scola, the current archbishop of Milan, Pope Benedict XVI expressed his own sorrow at the death of "this dear brother, who has generously served the Gospel and the Church."

Pope Benedict recalled Cardinal Martini's many years of service as "an expert teacher, an authoritative biblical scholar and a beloved Rector of both the Pontifical Gregorian University and the Pontifical Biblical Institute." The Pope praised Martini as "a wise and diligent Archbishop of the Ambrosian Diocese."

Born in Turin, Italy, in 1927, Cardinal Martini joined the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) in 1944, when he was just 17 years old. He was ordained to the priesthood eight years later, in 1952.

A world-renowned biblical scholar, Martini served as Dean of the Faculty of Scripture at the Pontifical Biblical Institute, the Biblicum. In 1969 he became Rector of the Institute, a position he held until 1978 when he was called to become Rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University. As a scholar he wrote extensively scriptural topics, as well as on Ignatian Spirituality.

Pope John Paul II chose Carlo Martini to assume the office of Archbishop of Milan in 1979. Martini governed the Archdiocese, one of the largest in the world, for over twenty years.

The Director of the Holy See's Press office, Father Federico Lombardi, a fellow Jesuit, said Cardinal Martini's death "is an event that stirs great emotion well beyond the confines even of the vast Archdiocese of Milan."

Father Lombardi said, "With his words, his many writings, his innovative pastoral initiatives, [Cardinal Martini] was able to effectively witness to the Faith, and proclaim it to the people of our times."


Below please find the full text of Father Lombardi's editorial on the death of Cardinal Carlo Martini:

The death of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini is an event that stirs great emotion well beyond the confines even of the vast Archdiocese of Milan, which he governed for 22 years. It concerns a bishop that, with his words, his many writings, his innovative pastoral initiatives, was able to effectively witness to and proclaim the faith to the people of our time; earning the esteem and respect of those both near and far; inspiring so many of his brother bishops throughout the world in the exercise of their ministry.

Cardinal Martini’s formation and personality were those of a Jesuit scholar of Sacred Scripture. The Word of God was the starting point and the foundation of his approach to every aspect of reality and all of his contributions. The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola were tAhe matrix of his spirituality and spiritual pedagogy, of the continued engagement, at once direct and concrete, between the reading of the Word of God and life, of spiritual discernment and determinations in the light of the Gospel.

It was the courageous intuition of Pope John Paul II to put the spiritual and cultural wealth of the man who had been until then a scholar—the rector first of the Biblicum and then of the Gregorian University—in the service of the pastoral care of one of the largest dioceses in the world. He had a distinctive style of governing. In his last little book—Il Vescovo (“The Bishop”)—Martini wrote: “Do not think the bishop is able to effectively guide the people entrusted to him with a multitude of regulations and decrees, with prohibitions and negative judgements. Focus instead on interior formation, on a taste for and fascination with Sacred Scripture; show the positive reasons for our actions, inspired by the Gospel. One will gain so much more than one would by a rigid observance of rules and regulations.”

It is a precious heritage, to reflect upon seriously when we seek the paths of the “new evangelisation.”
SHARED FROM RADIO VATICANA

RADIO VATICANA REPORT:

PRAYER FOR POLITICIANS

Pope Benedict XVI’s general prayer intention for September is “that politicians may always act with honesty, integrity, and love for the truth”. In a address to the 2010 Pontifical Council for the Laity Assembly, on “Witnesses to Christ in the Political Community”, Pope Benedict outlined his vision of the Churches contribution to the formation of politicians.

“…the technical formation of politicians is not part of the Church's mission; various other institutions exist for this purpose. Rather, the Church's mission is to "pass moral judgments even in matters relating to politics, whenever the fundamental rights of man or the salvation of souls requires it.... [T]he only means it may use are those which are in accord with the Gospel and the welfare of all men according to the diversity of times and circumstances" (Gaudium et spes, n. 76). The Church concentrates particularly on the formation of the disciples of Christ, in order that they may ever increasingly become witnesses of his Presence, any and everywhere. It is up to the lay faithful to demonstrate concretely in their personal and family life, in social, cultural and political life that the faith enables them to see reality in a new and profound way, and to transform it; that Christian hope broadens the limited horizon of mankind, expanding it towards the true loftiness of his being, towards God; that charity in truth is the most effective force that is capable of changing the world; that the Gospel gives a guarantee of freedom and a message of liberation; that the fundamental principles of the social doctrine of the Church such as the dignity of the human person, subsidiarity and solidarity are extremely relevant and valuable in order to support new paths of development in service to the whole person and to all humanity. It is also the duty of the laity to participate actively in political life, in a manner consistently in accordance with the Church's teaching, bringing their well-founded reasons and high ideals into the democratic debate, and into the search for a broad consensus among all those who care about the defense of life and freedom, the safeguarding of truth and the good of the family, solidarity with the needy and the crucial search for the common good. Christians do not seek political or cultural hegemony but, whatever their work, they are animated by the certainty that Christ is the cornerstone of every human structure (cf. Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Doctrinal Note on some questions regarding The Participation of Catholics in Political Life, 24 November 2002).

In taking up the words of my Predecessors, I too can affirm that politics is a very important field in which to exercise charity. It calls Christians to a strong commitment to citizenship, to building a good life in one's country, and likewise to an effective presence among the international community's institutions and programmes. There is a need for authentically Christian politicians but, even more so, for lay faithful who witness to Christ and the Gospel in the civil and political community. This demand must be reflected in the educational programmes of ecclesial communities and requires new forms of presence and support from Pastors. Christian membership in faith-related associations, ecclesial movements and new communities can provide a good school for these disciples and witnesses, sustained by the charismatic, communitarian, educational and missionary resources of these groups.

This is a demanding challenge. The times in which we live confront us with large and complex problems, and the social question has become an anthropological question at the same time. In the recent past, the ideological paradigms have been shattered that proposed to be a "scientific" response to that question. The spread of a confused cultural relativism and of a utilitarian and hedonistic individualism weakens democracy and favours the dominance of strong powers. We must recover and reinvigorate authentic political wisdom; be demanding in what concerns our own sphere of competency; make discerning use of the research of the human sciences; face reality in all its aspects, going beyond any kind of ideological reductionism or utopian dream; show we are open to true dialogue and collaboration, bearing in mind that politics is also a complex art of equilibrium between ideals and interests, but never forgetting that the contribution of Christians can be effective only if knowledge of faith becomes knowledge of reality, the key to judgement and transformation. What is needed is a real "revolution of love". The new generations have immense demands and challenges before them in their personal and social life. Your Dicastery looks after them with special care, particularly through the World Youth Days, which have for 25 years been producing rich apostolic fruits among young people. Among these challenges is also the social and political commitment, founded not on partisan ideologies or interests but rather on the choice to serve man and the common good, in the light of the Gospel.

BENEDICT XVI
ADDRESS TO THE 24TH PLENARY SESSION OF
THE PONTIFICAL COUNCIL FOR THE LAITY
21 May 2010

SHARED FROM RADIO VATICANA

TODAY'S MASS ONLINE FRIDAY AUGUST 31, 2012

Matthew 25: 1 - 13


1 "Then the kingdom of heaven shall be compared to ten maidens who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom.
2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise.
3 For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them;
4 but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps.
5 As the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept.
6 But at midnight there was a cry, `Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.'
7 Then all those maidens rose and trimmed their lamps.
8 And the foolish said to the wise, `Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.'
9 But the wise replied, `Perhaps there will not be enough for us and for you; go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.'
10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast; and the door was shut.
11 Afterward the other maidens came also, saying, `Lord, lord, open to us.'
12 But he replied, `Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.'
13 Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.



AMERICA : PAUL RYAN SPEECH FROM GOP CONVENTION


romney-2012-blog-image-.jpg
MITTROMNEY.COM RELEASE: Mr. Chairman, delegates, and fellow citizens: I am honored by the support of this convention for vice president of the United States.
I accept the duty to help lead our nation out of a jobs crisis and back to prosperity – and I know we can do this.
I accept the calling of my generation to give our children the America that was given to us, with opportunity for the young and security for the old – and I know that we are ready.
Our nominee is sure ready. His whole life has prepared him for this moment – to meet serious challenges in a serious way, without excuses and idle words. After four years of getting the run-around, America needs a turnaround, and the man for the job is Governor Mitt Romney.
I’m the newcomer to the campaign, so let me share a first impression. I have never seen opponents so silent about their record, and so desperate to keep their power.
They’ve run out of ideas. Their moment came and went. Fear and division are all they’ve got left.
With all their attack ads, the president is just throwing away money – and he’s pretty experienced at that. You see, some people can’t be dragged down by the usual cheap tactics, because their ability, character, and plain decency are so obvious – and ladies and gentlemen, that is Mitt Romney.
For my part, your nomination is an unexpected turn. It certainly came as news to my family, and I’d like you to meet them: My wife Janna, our daughter Liza, and our boys Charlie and Sam.
The kids are happy to see their grandma, who lives in Florida. There she is – my Mom, Betty.
My Dad, a small-town lawyer, was also named Paul. Until we lost him when I was 16, he was a gentle presence in my life. I like to think he’d be proud of me and my sister and brothers, because I’m sure proud of him and of where I come from, Janesville, Wisconsin.
I live on the same block where I grew up. We belong to the same parish where I was baptized. Janesville is that kind of place.
The people of Wisconsin have been good to me. I’ve tried to live up to their trust. And now I ask those hardworking men and women, and millions like them across America, to join our cause and get this country working again.
When Governor Romney asked me to join the ticket, I said, “Let’s get this done” – and that is exactly, what we’re going to do.
President Barack Obama came to office during an economic crisis, as he has reminded us a time or two. Those were very tough days, and any fair measure of his record has to take that into account. My home state voted for President Obama. When he talked about change, many people liked the sound of it, especially in Janesville, where we were about to lose a major factory.
A lot of guys I went to high school with worked at that GM plant. Right there at that plant, candidate Obama said: “I believe that if our government is there to support you … this plant will be here for another hundred years.” That’s what he said in 2008.
Well, as it turned out, that plant didn’t last another year. It is locked up and empty to this day. And that’s how it is in so many towns today, where the recovery that was promised is nowhere in sight.
Right now, 23 million men and women are struggling to find work. Twenty-three million people, unemployed or underemployed. Nearly one in six Americans is living in poverty. Millions of young Americans have graduated from college during the Obama presidency, ready to use their gifts and get moving in life. Half of them can’t find the work they studied for, or any work at all.
So here’s the question: Without a change in leadership, why would the next four years be any different from the last four years?
The first troubling sign came with the stimulus. It was President Obama’s first and best shot at fixing the economy, at a time when he got everything he wanted under one-party rule. It cost $831 billion – the largest one-time expenditure ever by our federal government.
It went to companies like Solyndra, with their gold-plated connections, subsidized jobs, and make-believe markets. The stimulus was a case of political patronage, corporate welfare, and cronyism at their worst. You, the working men and women of this country, were cut out of the deal.
What did the taxpayers get out of the Obama stimulus? More debt. That money wasn’t just spent and wasted – it was borrowed, spent, and wasted.
Maybe the greatest waste of all was time. Here we were, faced with a massive job crisis – so deep that if everyone out of work stood in single file, that unemployment line would stretch the length of the entire American continent. You would think that any president, whatever his party, would make job creation, and nothing else, his first order of economic business.
But this president didn’t do that. Instead, we got a long, divisive, all-or-nothing attempt to put the federal government in charge of health care.
Obamacare comes to more than two thousand pages of rules, mandates, taxes, fees, and fines that have no place in a free country.
The president has declared that the debate over government-controlled health care is over. That will come as news to the millions of Americans who will elect Mitt Romney so we can repeal Obamacare.
And the biggest, coldest power play of all in Obamacare came at the expense of the elderly.
You see, even with all the hidden taxes to pay for the health care takeover, even with new taxes on nearly a million small businesses, the planners in Washington still didn’t have enough money. They needed more. They needed hundreds of billions more. So, they just took it all away from Medicare. Seven hundred and sixteen billion dollars, funneled out of Medicare by President Obama. An obligation we have to our parents and grandparents is being sacrificed, all to pay for a new entitlement we didn’t even ask for. The greatest threat to Medicare is Obamacare, and we’re going to stop it.
In Congress, when they take out the heavy books and wall charts about Medicare, my thoughts go back to a house on Garfield Street in Janesville. My wonderful grandma, Janet, had Alzheimer’s and moved in with Mom and me. Though she felt lost at times, we did all the little things that made her feel loved.
We had help from Medicare, and it was there, just like it’s there for my Mom today. Medicare is a promise, and we will honor it. A Romney-Ryan administration will protect and strengthen Medicare, for my Mom’s generation, for my generation, and for my kids and yours.
So our opponents can consider themselves on notice. In this election, on this issue, the usual posturing on the Left isn’t going to work. Mitt Romney and I know the difference between protecting a program, and raiding it. Ladies and gentlemen, our nation needs this debate. We want this debate. We will win this debate.
Obamacare, as much as anything else, explains why a presidency that began with such anticipation now comes to such a disappointing close.
It began with a financial crisis; it ends with a job crisis.
It began with a housing crisis they alone didn’t cause; it ends with a housing crisis they didn’t correct.
It began with a perfect Triple-A credit rating for the United States; it ends with a downgraded America.
It all started off with stirring speeches, Greek columns, the thrill of something new. Now all that’s left is a presidency adrift, surviving on slogans that already seem tired, grasping at a moment that has already passed, like a ship trying to sail on yesterday’s wind.
President Obama was asked not long ago to reflect on any mistakes he might have made. He said, well, “I haven’t communicated enough.” He said his job is to “tell a story to the American people” – as if that’s the whole problem here? He needs to talk more, and we need to be better listeners?
Ladies and gentlemen, these past four years we have suffered no shortage of words in the White House. What’s missing is leadership in the White House. And the story that Barack Obama does tell, forever shifting blame to the last administration, is getting old. The man assumed office almost four years ago – isn’t it about time he assumed responsibility?
In this generation, a defining responsibility of government is to steer our nation clear of a debt crisis while there is still time. Back in 2008, candidate Obama called a $10 trillion national debt “unpatriotic” – serious talk from what looked to be a serious reformer.
Yet by his own decisions, President Obama has added more debt than any other president before him, and more than all the troubled governments of Europe combined. One president, one term, $5 trillion in new debt.
He created a bipartisan debt commission. They came back with an urgent report. He thanked them, sent them on their way, and then did exactly nothing.
Republicans stepped up with good-faith reforms and solutions equal to the problems. How did the president respond? By doing nothing – nothing except to dodge and demagogue the issue.
So here we are, $16 trillion in debt and still he does nothing. In Europe, massive debts have put entire governments at risk of collapse, and still he does nothing. And all we have heard from this president and his team are attacks on anyone who dares to point out the obvious.
They have no answer to this simple reality: We need to stop spending money we don’t have.
My Dad used to say to me: “Son. You have a choice: You can be part of the problem, or you can be part of the solution.” The present administration has made its choices. And Mitt Romney and I have made ours: Before the math and the momentum overwhelm us all, we are going to solve this nation’s economic problems.
And I’m going to level with you: We don’t have that much time. But if we are serious, and smart, and we lead, we can do this.
After four years of government trying to divide up the wealth, we will get America creating wealth again. With tax fairness and regulatory reform, we’ll put government back on the side of the men and women who create jobs, and the men and women who need jobs.
My Mom started a small business, and I’ve seen what it takes. Mom was 50 when my Dad died. She got on a bus every weekday for years, and rode 40 miles each morning to Madison. She earned a new degree and learned new skills to start her small business. It wasn’t just a new livelihood. It was a new life. And it transformed my Mom from a widow in grief to a small businesswoman whose happiness wasn’t just in the past. Her work gave her hope. It made our family proud. And to this day, my Mom is my role model.
Behind every small business, there’s a story worth knowing. All the corner shops in our towns and cities, the restaurants, cleaners, gyms, hair salons, hardware stores – these didn’t come out of nowhere. A lot of heart goes into each one. And if small businesspeople say they made it on their own, all they are saying is that nobody else worked seven days a week in their place. Nobody showed up in their place to open the door at five in the morning. Nobody did their thinking, and worrying, and sweating for them. After all that work, and in a bad economy, it sure doesn’t help to hear from their president that government gets the credit. What they deserve to hear is the truth: Yes, you did build that.
We have a plan for a stronger middle class, with the goal of generating 12 million new jobs over the next four years.
In a clean break from the Obama years, and frankly from the years before this president, we will keep federal spending at 20 percent of GDP, or less. That is enough. The choice is whether to put hard limits on economic growth, or hard limits on the size of government, and we choose to limit government.
I learned a good deal about economics, and about America, from the author of the Reagan tax reforms – the great Jack Kemp. What gave Jack that incredible enthusiasm was his belief in the possibilities of free people, in the power of free enterprise and strong communities to overcome poverty and despair. We need that same optimism right now.
And in our dealings with other nations, a Romney-Ryan administration will speak with confidence and clarity. Wherever men and women rise up for their own freedom, they will know that the American president is on their side. Instead of managing American decline, leaving allies to doubt us and adversaries to test us, we will act in the conviction that the United States is still the greatest force for peace and liberty that this world has ever known.
President Obama is the kind of politician who puts promises on the record, and then calls that the record. But we are four years into this presidency. The issue is not the economy as Barack Obama inherited it, not the economy as he envisions it, but this economy as we are living it.
College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life. Everyone who feels stuck in the Obama economy is right to focus on the here and now. And I hope you understand this too, if you’re feeling left out or passed by: You have not failed, your leaders have failed you.
None of us have to settle for the best this administration offers – a dull, adventureless journey from one entitlement to the next, a government-planned life, a country where everything is free but us.
Listen to the way we’re spoken to already, as if everyone is stuck in some class or station in life, victims of circumstances beyond our control, with government there to help us cope with our fate.
It’s the exact opposite of everything I learned growing up in Wisconsin, or at college in Ohio. When I was waiting tables, washing dishes, or mowing lawns for money, I never thought of myself as stuck in some station in life. I was on my own path, my own journey, an American journey where I could think for myself, decide for myself, define happiness for myself. That’s what we do in this country. That’s the American Dream. That’s freedom, and I’ll take it any day over the supervision and sanctimony of the central planners.
By themselves, the failures of one administration are not a mandate for a new administration. A challenger must stand on his own merits. He must be ready and worthy to serve in the office of president.
We’re a full generation apart, Governor Romney and I. And, in some ways, we’re a little different. There are the songs on his iPod, which I’ve heard on the campaign bus and on many hotel elevators. He actually urged me to play some of these songs at campaign rallies. I said, I hope it’s not a deal-breaker Mitt, but my playlist starts with AC/DC, and ends with Zeppelin.
A generation apart. That makes us different, but not in any of the things that matter. Mitt Romney and I both grew up in the heartland, and we know what places like Wisconsin and Michigan look like when times are good, when people are working, when families are doing more than just getting by. And we both know it can be that way again.
We’ve had very different careers – mine mainly in public service, his mostly in the private sector. He helped start businesses and turn around failing ones. By the way, being successful in business – that’s a good thing.
Mitt has not only succeeded, but succeeded where others could not. He turned around the Olympics at a time when a great institution was collapsing under the weight of bad management, overspending, and corruption – sounds familiar, doesn’t it?
He was the Republican governor of a state where almost nine in ten legislators are Democrats, and yet he balanced the budget without raising taxes. Unemployment went down, household incomes went up, and Massachusetts, under Mitt Romney, saw its credit rating upgraded.
Mitt and I also go to different churches. But in any church, the best kind of preaching is done by example. And I’ve been watching that example. The man who will accept your nomination tomorrow is prayerful and faithful and honorable. Not only a defender of marriage, he offers an example of marriage at its best. Not only a fine businessman, he’s a fine man, worthy of leading this optimistic and good-hearted country.
Our different faiths come together in the same moral creed. We believe that in every life there is goodness; for every person, there is hope. Each one of us was made for a reason, bearing the image and likeness of the Lord of Life.
We have responsibilities, one to another – we do not each face the world alone. And the greatest of all responsibilities, is that of the strong to protect the weak. The truest measure of any society is how it treats those who cannot defend or care for themselves.
Each of these great moral ideas is essential to democratic government – to the rule of law, to life in a humane and decent society. They are the moral creed of our country, as powerful in our time, as on the day of America’s founding. They are self-evident and unchanging, and sometimes, even presidents need reminding, that our rights come from nature and God, not from government.
The founding generation secured those rights for us, and in every generation since, the best among us have defended our freedoms. They are protecting us right now. We honor them and all our veterans, and we thank them.
The right that makes all the difference now, is the right to choose our own leaders. And you are entitled to the clearest possible choice, because the time for choosing is drawing near. So here is our pledge.
We will not duck the tough issues, we will lead.
We will not spend four years blaming others, we will take responsibility.
We will not try to replace our founding principles, we will reapply our founding principles.
The work ahead will be hard. These times demand the best of us – all of us, but we can do this. Together, we can do this.
We can get this country working again. We can get this economy growing again. We can make the safety net safe again. We can do this.
Whatever your political party, let’s come together for the sake of our country. Join Mitt Romney and me. Let’s give this effort everything we have. Let’s see this through all the way. Let’s get this done.
Thank you, and God bless.


AMERICA : FR. GROESCHEL 'S COMMENTS - APOLOGY FROM ARCHDIOCESE

Dear Readers. Please pray for Fr. Groeschel, his order, and all victims of abuse. Thanks. God bless.
ARCHDIOCESE OF NEW YORK RELEASE: STATEMENT OF JOSEPH ZWILLING REGARDING RECENT COMMENTS OF FR. BENEDICT GROESCHEL
This is the statement from Joseph Zwilling, Communications Director for the Archdiocese of New York, in reaction to comments attributed to Fr. Benedict Groeschel in a recent interview with the National Catholic Register.
"The comments made by Father Benedict Groeschel that appeared on the website of the National Catholic Register are simply wrong. Although he is not a priest of the Archdiocese of New York, what Father Groeschel said cannot be allowed to stand unchallenged. The sexual abuse of a minor is a crime, and whoever commits that crime deserves to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
The harm that was done by these remarks was compounded by the assertion that the victim of abuse is responsible for the abuse, or somehow caused the abuse to occur. This is not only terribly wrong, it is also extremely painful for victims. To all those who are hurting because of sexual abuse or because of these comments, please know that you have our profound sympathy and our prayers.
The Archdiocese of New York completely disassociates itself from these comments. They do not reflect our beliefs or our practice."
APOLOGY FROM ORDER OF FR. GROESCHEL
FRANCISCAN FRIARS RELEASE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 30, 2012

The Community of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal sincerely apologizes for the comments made by Fr. Benedict Groeschel in an interview released yesterday by the National Catholic Register, online edition.In that interview, Fr. Benedict made comments that were inappropriate and untrue. A child is never responsible for abuse. Any abuser of a child is always responsible, especially a priest. Sexual abuse of a minor is a terrible crime and should always be treated as such. We are sorry for any pain his comments may have caused. Fr. Benedict has dedicated his life to helping others and these comments were completely out of character. He never intended to excuse abuse or implicate the victims. We hope that these unfortunate statements will not overshadow the great good Fr. Benedict has done in housing countless homeless people, feeding innumerable poor families, and bringing healing, peace and encouragement to so many.

Fr Benedict helped found our community 25 years ago with the hope of bringing the healing peace of Jesus Christ to our wounded world. Our desire has always been to lift up humanity and never to hurt. About seven years ago, Fr. Benedict was struck by a car and was in a coma for over a month. In recent months his health, memory and cognitive ability have been failing. He has been in and out of the hospital. Due to his declining health and inability to care for himself, Fr. Benedict had moved to a location where he could rest and be relieved of his responsibilities. Although these factors do not excuse his comments, they help us understand how such a compassionate man could have said something so wrong, so insensitive, and so out of character. Our prayers are with all those who have been hurt by his comments, especially victims of sexual abuse.


Personal Statement from Fr Benedict Groeschel:

I apologize for my comments. I did not intend to blame the victim. A priest (or anyone else) who abuses a minor is always wrong and is always responsible. My mind and my way of expressing myself are not as clear as they used to be. I have spent my life trying to help others the best that I could. I deeply regret any harm I have caused to anyone.
With questions please contact Fr. Glenn Sudano at 914-965-8143.
COMMENTS FROM INTERVIEW
[Interviewer]: Part of your work here at Trinity has been working with priests involved in abuse, no?

[Father Groeschel]: A little bit, yes; but you know, in those cases, they have to leave. And some of them profoundly — profoundly — penitential, horrified. People have this picture in their minds of a person planning to — a psychopath. But that's not the case. Suppose you have a man having a nervous breakdown, and a youngster comes after him. A lot of the cases, the youngster — 14, 16, 18 — is the seducer.

[Interviewer]: Why would that be?

[Father Greoschel]: Well, it's not so hard to see — a kid looking for a father and didn't have his own — and they won't be planning to get into heavy-duty sex, but almost romantic, embracing, kissing, perhaps sleeping but not having intercourse or anything like that.

It's an understandable thing, and you know where you find it, among other clergy or important people; you look at teachers, attorneys, judges, social workers. Generally, if they get involved, it's heterosexually, and if it's a priest, he leaves and gets married — that's the usual thing — and gets a dispensation. A lot of priests leave quickly, get civilly married and then apply for the dispensation, which takes about three years.

But there are the relatively rare cases where a priest is involved in a homosexual way with a minor. I think the statistic I read recently in a secular psychology review was about 2%. Would that be true of other clergy? Would it be true of doctors, lawyers, coaches?

Here's this poor guy — [Penn State football coach Jerry] Sandusky — it went on for years. Interesting: Why didn't anyone say anything? Apparently, a number of kids knew about it and didn't break the ice. Well, you know, until recent years, people did not register in their minds that it was a crime. It was a moral failure, scandalous; but they didn't think of it in terms of legal things.

If you go back 10 or 15 years ago with different sexual difficulties — except for rape or violence — it was very rarely brought as a civil crime. Nobody thought of it that way. Sometimes statutory rape would be — but only if the girl pushed her case. Parents wouldn't touch it. People backed off, for years, on sexual cases. I'm not sure why.

I think perhaps part of the reason would be an embarrassment, that it brings the case out into the open, and the girl's name is there, or people will figure out what's there, or the youngster involved — you know, it's not put in the paper, but everybody knows; they're talking about it.

At this point, (when) any priest, any clergyman, any social worker, any teacher, any responsible person in society would become involved in a single sexual act — not necessarily intercourse — they're done. And I'm inclined to think, on their first offense, they should not go to jail because their intention was not committing a crime.

EUROPE : YOUTH 2000 A SUCCESS - BRIEF HISTORY

Searchlight@Walsingham poster
YOUTH 2000 was a success this year. Here is a brief history:
Want to know what happens at Youth 2000? One young person who has been to Youth 2000 prayer festivals made this video...
Youth 2000 was founded in England in 1989 after a young man called Ernest Williams was inspired by the late Pope John Paul II’s call for young people to become missionaries in their own time.Ernest had a vision of bringing young people, through the Catholic Church, to a personal experience of the love of God.Since then Youth 2000 events have taken place in 33 countries, transforming lives of young people in every continent.
You would be forgiven for thinking that the youth of this country is in a dire situation….you switch on the news and all you hear about the youth are stories of tragedies and horrific violence. Perhaps you know of people who have been affected by these events.
True and as sad as this is, there is also so much to be celebrated about the youth in this country.
Back to Youth 2000. Since 1989, through school, parish and residential events, a nationwide network of prayer groups and through an annual international youth festival, thousands of young people have come to know how much God loves them and they have found a new meaning to life.
One of the main aims of our work is to give young people hope, to fill the spiritual void in their lives.You may know that Mother Teresa said that this spiritual void is worse than the material poverty of those starving and dying on the streets of Calcutta.
We are trying to help young people fill this gap in their lives.
Youth 2000 events are run by young leaders and are a gateway back into the Church for many young people.The simple format includes Mass, a powerful reconciliation and healing service, discussion and prayer.Great talks from international speakers manage to both entertain the youth and grab their attention with a challenging message. Our events are also a great place to make friends with others interested in their discovering faith.
At the end of August, over the Bank Holiday weekend, Youth 2000 is organising a donation-only festival of prayer for young people at Walsingham in Norfolk, 27th-31st August.We are also running coaches from London. I implore you to take this opportunity to invite young people of the area to come along, last year 1200 people responded to this invitation and had a life-changing experience. We can accommodate so many more.
Our events are run on a donation only basis to enable everyone, irrespective of income, to come along.
As you saw in the video, this event costs £80,000 to put on. We hire marquees for activities and accommodation, catering, sound equipment, it all adds up but for those who have been before, we know that it is so much worth it.
SHARED FROM YOUTH 2000


AFRICA : TANZANIA : RIP BISHOP KIKOTI - AGE 55

CISA NEWS REPORT:
Church-Mourns-Death-of-Bishop-Kikoti
MPANDA, August 31, 2012 (CISA) -The Catholic Church in Tanzania is mourning the death of Bishop Pascal Kikoti of Mpanda diocese. The Bishop died at Bugando Referral Hospital in Mwanza on the night of August 28, after a short illness. He was 55.
In his message of condolence to the Tanzania Episcopal Conference President Jakaya Kikwete said, “I have been shocked and saddened by the death of Bishop William Pascal Kikoti of Mpanda Diocese… at the tender age of 55 he was just beginning his service and he was still needed.”
The Secretary General of the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa, AMECEA, Rev Fr Ferdinand Lugonzo has said that the death of Bishop Kikoti has not only affected the Diocese of Mpanda and the Tanzanian Episcopal Conference but AMECEA and the Universal Church as well.
Bishop Kikoti was born at Nyabula Parish in Iringa Region in 1957. He attended Peramiho Major Seminary in Songea District. He was ordained a priest on June 29, 1988 in Iringa and bishop on January 24, 2001. He was the first bishop of Mpanda Diocese which split from Sumbawanga Diocese in 2000.
The late bishop will be laid to rest on Saturday September 1, at the Mpanda Cathedral.
SHARED FROM CISA NEWS

AUSTRALIA : OVER 450 AT CATHOLIC YOUTH LEADERS CONVENTION

Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese REPORT
31 Aug 2012



Bishop Anthony Fisher OP
More than 450 Catholic youth leaders from dioceses, parishes, schools, universities, movements and religious communities across the country have signed on to participate in next month's all important Australia Catholic Youth Ministry Convention (ACYMC).
A further 50 or more are expected to register this weekend to beat the deadline for registration.
A project of the Bishop's Pastoral Commission ACYMC 2012 will be held at the Campbelltown Catholic Club from Friday 21 September until Sunday 23 September and will be hosted by the Diocese of Wollongong.
"Although the Convention is being held in Campbelltown it will be very much a national gathering with youth leaders flying in from every diocese in Australia and from every state and territory," says Malcolm Hart, the Commission's Senior Youth Ministry Projects Officer and chair of the organising committee for ACYMC 2012.
"This is only the second time we have held a Convention for those involved with youth ministry and the response has been overwhelming," he says.
Australia's first ACYMC was held in Melbourne in 2010. Organised by the late much loved Bishop Joe Grech, who was the then Commission's Delegate for Youth, the event maintained and built on the momentum and enthusiasm experienced during World Youth Day 2008 as well as offering support, training and faith formation for youth leaders across the country.
"The feedback from that first Convention was extremely positive and created a wonderful sense of communion among participants no matter where they were based or what type of youth ministry they involved with," says Malcolm. "Whether they were working for parishes or in schools or with working with youth from their religious or ecclesiastical communities, there was a sense of real fellowship. And as well as learning from the inspirational keynote speakers and wide range of workshops that were part of the 2010 convention program, those present also learned from each other."


Malcolm Hart, Senior Youth Ministry Projects Officer
Malcolm describes the ACYMC 2010 as a "great moment for the youth ministry community in Australia." But he believes this year's event will be even more powerful and life-changing.
Among the broad range of workshops on offer will be two plenary interactive panel discussions and sessions with an opportunity for participants to post comments and questions via live Facebook and Twitter.
Over the past few years cyberspace has increasingly become the method of choice of young people to communicate with friends, post photographs and share their ideas. Young people today communicate by text, Twitter, Facebook or blogs with the Archdiocese of Sydney online site Xt3.com still one of the fastest growing Catholic social networking sites worldwide.

ACYMC 2012 workshops will also explore Youth Ministry in the School Environment, Ministry with Music, Prayer in the Classroom, Indigenous Spirituality, Social Justice, Connecting with Catholic Agencies, Youth Ministry and the New Evangelisation and Mental First Aid.
"Mental First Aid deals with mental health issues," Malcolm says explaining that mental health concerns among young people is something everyone involved with a youth ministry will encounter.
"We wanted to provide resources to recognise mental health difficulties in young people and what to do and where to obtain immediate help for the teenager or young person.
In addition to the workshop the de La Salle Brothers will give a special presentation and talk about Kids Help Line founded by the Brothers which is now in its 20th year of operation.


The first ACYMC in 2010 a huge success
"They will present research and information obtained from those who access the service and the key issues," Malcolm says pointing out that teenagers are particularly prone to depression, thoughts of suicide and other mental disorders.
Among the keynote speakers will be Sister Hilda Scott, OSB from the Benedictine Abbey at Jamberoo, who is possibly best known to most Australians from her role as mentor to a group of young women on the TV series, The Abbey. Father Christian Fini OM, founder and national coordinator of Oblate Youth Australia and member of the Australian Catholic Youth Council is another of the speakers.
The Bishop of Parramatta, Coordinator of World Youth Day 2008 and Youth Delegate for the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, the Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP will not only be one of the most anticipated speakers at the Convention but will lead spiritual formation for participants.
"He will talk in the context of The Year of Grace and the theme for next year's World Youth Day which is 'Rejoice in the Lord Always,'" Malcolm says adding faith formation at a personal level and empowerment to live as disciples of Christ among participants constitutes one of the most important elements of ACYMC 2012.
Held from 21-23 September at the Campbelltown Catholic Club, the Diocese of Wollongong has arranged for home stay accommodation for many participants arriving from across NSW and interstate. To register and be part of ACYMC 2012 log on to http://youthministry.catholic.org.au/registration/registration.html
SHARED FROM ARCHDIOCESE OF SYDNEY


TODAY' S SAINT: AUG. 31: ST. RAYMOND NONNATUS: DIED 1240

St. Raymond Nonnatus
CARDINAL AND MERCEDARIAN
Feast: August 31

Information: Feast Day: August 31

Born: 1204, La Portella, Comarca of Segrià, Catalonia, Kingdom of Aragon
Died: August 31, 1240, Cardona, Province of Barcelona, Catalonia, Kingdom of Aragon
Canonized: 1657, Rome by Pope Alexander VII
Patron of: Childbirth; children; expectant mothers; falsely accused people; fever; infants; midwives; newborn babies; obstetricians; pregnant women
Born 1200 or 1204 at Portello in the Diocese of Urgel in Catalonia; died at Cardona, 31 August, 1240. His feast is celebrated on 31 August. He is pictured in the habit of his order surrounded by ransomed slaves, with a padlock on his lips. He was taken from the womb of his mother after her death, hence his name. Of noble but poor family, he showed early traits of piety and great talent. His father ordered him to tend a farm, but later gave him permission to take the habit with the Mercedarians at Barcelona, at the hands of the founder, St. Peter Nolasco. Raymond made such progress in the religious life that he was soon considered worthy to succeed his master in the office of ransomer. He was sent to Algiers and liberated many captives. When money failed he gave himself as a hostage. He was zealous in teaching the Christian religion and made many converts, which embittered the Mohammedan authorities. Raymond was subjected to all kinds of indignities and cruelty, was made to run the gauntlet, and was at last sentenced to impalement. The hope of a greater sum of money as ransom caused the governor to commute the sentence into imprisonment. To prevent him from preaching for Christ, his lips were pierced with a red-hot iron and closed with a padlock. After his arrival in Spain, in 1239, he was made a cardinal by Gregory IX. In the next year he was called to Rome by the pope, but came only as far as Cardona, about six miles from Barcelona, where he died. His body was brought to the chapel of St. Nicholas near his old farm. In 1657 his name was placed in the Roman martyrology by Alexander VII. He is invoked by women in labour and by persons falsely accused. The appendix to the Roman ritual gives a formula for the blessing of water, in his honour, to be used by the sick, and another of candles.

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