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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

CATHOLIC NEWS WORLD : TUES. DEC. 18, 2012 - SHARE















Vatican Radio REPORT- SHARE- Five days have passed since Pope Benedict XVI sent out his first Tweet in eight languages and according to the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, his @Pontifex handle has surpassed two million subscribers.
President of the Council, Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli told Vatican Radio the Pope is tweeting because that’s what people are doing today and he wants to be present in the latest platforms of communication to share with them “words of truth.”

That means adapting his messages to fit into Twitter’s 140 character format. But the key, Archbishop Celli notes, “is not so much the number of characters available but the depth of the words he uses.”

The Archbishop says we could all stand to re-learn how to communicate using words “that always have a profound significance for others.”

Msgr. Celli points out that 140 million people actively use Twitter and forty percent of them are young people from 18 to 34 years of age. And Pope Benedict wants to be there in the dialogue with them, he says.

The Pope and the Church, Celli says, want to be where men and women are speaking together because not only are they sharing information, they’re also sharing a bit of themselves.

And, he notes the Church must do all it can to bridge the “digital divide” in Africa and certain areas of Latin America and Asia where access to social media is greatly limited.
RELIGION AND PUBLIC SPACE
Vatican City, 18 December 2012 (VIS) - The Department of Science of Education at the "Roma 3" University has organised an international seminar, concluding today, on the theme "Religion and public space".
The conference examines the following issues: the redefinition of public space in relation to the new presence of the religious; the debate surrounding the acceptance or refusal of religious symbols in public places; the ways in which the various religious presences engage with politics, culture and with the presence of symbols in public places; the concept of current religious pluralism in two nations in which Catholicism has, until recent times, occupied a position of 'monopoly' or near-monopoly and/or within protected 'religious markets'; the relationships between political and religious leaders.
The philosopher Massimo Introvigne, co-ordinator of the Observatory on Religious Freedom of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, opened yesterday's symposium with a presentation entitled "Religious freedom and relations between States and religions: different models in conflict?". This was followed by a round table discussion on "The case of Italy", "Church and State in Italy and Brazil: problems and moments", "Religious freedom, public space and judicial systems: redefinitions and new scenarios", "Secularity in pluralistic Italy", "Secularism as an ideology", and "Lay aggregations between secularisation and desecularisation".
The first day concluded with a debate on "Religion and politics in Italy".
This morning discussions focused on "The case in Brazil", in particular "Catholic Charismatic Renewal and evangelical Pentecostalism in Brazil: doctrinal divergence and political convergence", "Human rights in the Catholic Church in Brazil: from political to moral discourse", and "Religious symbols in public spaces: different configurations of Catholicism". At 10.30 a.m. the sociologist Franco Garelli gave a presentation on "Religion and public space", then at 11.30 there was a round table discussion on "Religion and politics in Latin America". The latter focused on the themes of "Marian sanctuaries as public space: Catholicism and nation in Argentina", "Argentina: the complicity of silence", "Revolutionary pastoral: some considerations regarding guerilla priests in Latin America", "The relationship between Church and State in Argentina during the last military government (1976-1983)" and "The Church of liberation and new popular governments".
The afternoon session will consist of a presentation by Enzo Pace at 3 p.m. entitled "Achilles and the tortoise: Italian Catholicism facing unprecedented religious diversity"; the seminar will then conclude with a debate on "Religion and public space".
SHARED FROM RADIO VATICANA

NOVENA FOR CHRISTMAS - DAY 2 - PLENARY INDULGENCE



Opening Prayer:

V. O God, come to my assistance.

R. O Lord, make haste to help me.


Glory be to the Father and to
the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning, is now
and ever shall be, world without
end.

Amen. 

Our Father, Who art in heaven
Hallowed be Thy Name;
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil. Amen.


Day 2 Prayers




The Visitation.
 
O most sweet infant Jesus, who by means of your
Virgin Mother, visited St. Elizabeth, and filled your
servant, St. John the Baptist, with the Holy Spirit,
sanctifying him from his mother's womb.
 


Amen.
FROM THE RACCOLTA OFFICIAL
NOVENA PREPARATORY TO CHRISTMAS In order to the devout preparation of ourselves for the glorious Birthday of our most loving Saviour, Jesus Christ, which the holy Church recalls to our memory every year on the 25th of December, and at the same time to render Him thanks for this great benefit, Pope Pius VII., by a Rescript of the Segretaria of the Memorials, dated August 12th, 1815 (which said Rescript is preserved in the Segretaria of the Vicariate), granted to all faithful Christians who, being contrite in heart, should prepare themselves for that great solemnity by a novena, consisting of pious exercises, prayers, acts of virtue, &c. -
i. An indulgence of 300 days each day of the said novena, and -
ii. A plenary indulgence to be gained on Christmas day, or on some day in its octave, by those who, after Confession and Communion, shall have made the said novena every day, and who shall pray according to the intentions of the Sovereigns Pontiff: and note that the Confession and Communion may be made on  any one of the days of the said novena, provided the novena is correctly kept. This was declared by Pope Pius VIII., of holy memory, by means of the S. Congr. of Indulgences, July 9, 1830. These indulgences were extended by the above-named Pius VII. to one other time in the year, besides the the specified, when any one should make the aforesaid novena in honour of the Child Jesus.

CATHOLIC MOVIES - WATCH ST. RITA - PART 2


IN HONOR OF THE YEAR OF FAITH - JCE NEWS WILL BE SHOWING SOME OF THE TOP CATHOLIC MOVIES OF ALL TIME. TUNE IN FOR THE NEXT PART OF ST. RITA- TOMORROW
PART 1 - http://jceworld.blogspot.ca/2012/12/catholic-movies-watch-st-rita-part-1.html 

AUSTRALIA : HOMELESS MAN MAKES MOVIE ON HOMELESS


Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese REPORT
18 Dec 2012
Advertising guru, Russel Howcroft (right) and Vinnies CEO Michael Perusco (centre) congratulate Roy Faamatala on his documentary
"A Place Like This," a moving and insightful documentary that chronicles the day-to-day struggles and small triumphs in the lives of six Sydney men and women battling homelessness is not only winning word-of-mouth raves after an exclusive pre-screening last week, but is expected to be in the running for a series of international awards.
Even more remarkable is that the film was made by a homeless man himself.
Japanese businessman Roy Faamatala never expected to become homeless but after last year's catastrophic tsunami he travelled to Sydney to arrange for exports of much needed goods to his crippled homeland. A sudden unexpected heart attack turned his life upside down. Unable to work, he had no income and the high cost of being ill so far from home took what funds he had.
By the time he was released from St Vincent's Hospital, his credit card was maxed out and there was no money for him to return to the hotel where he had been staying; or to afford a cheaper hotel.
In a foreign country and without friends or family to help, Roy turned to St Vincent de Paul Society.
"I never even in my wildest dreams expected to end up homeless. But for the next two months I lived at Vinnies' Matthew Talbot Hostel in Woolloomooloo with other homeless men," says Roy.
105,000 Australians are currently homeless
Although the Hostel itself is open only to men, Vinnies' Matthew Talbot Homeless Services also cares for women in search of shelter. In addition to sharing meals with many of Sydney's homeless men and women provided by Vinnies' Homeless Services, Roy also met others in the same boat when he began attending Vinnies' Ozanam Learning Centre next door.
Established in 2008, the Centre provides an innovative series of programs and courses aimed at helping Sydney's disadvantaged youth and other age groups get back on their feet. Along with vocational and job skills, resume writing, employment interview preparation and living skills such as cooking and nutrition, the Centre offers drama workshops, music at all levels and TAFE classes in filmmaking.
Roy joined the film making class and in a case of serendipity was not only eager to produce and direct a film about "the human face of homeless" and his own experiences over the past few months, but discovered this had long been a project the NSW St Vincent de Paul Society was  keen to realise.
"We had tried to arrange documentaries but winning the trust of men and women who are homeless is not easy. Forced to live by their wits they need to be suspicious to survive. Which is why Roy's plan for a documentary was so exciting," says Julie McDonald, Vinnies NSW's General Manager of Community & Corporate Relations. "Not only had Roy been homeless himself but during his time at Matthew Talbot he had won the respect and trust of several homeless men and women who agreed to let him film their lives to document the truth about homelessness and the people it affects."
In addition to Vinnies' support, "A Place like this" was also made in collaboration with advertising agency, George Patterson Y & R Sydney and Tafe NSW, where Roy was studying.
One of Roy's champions and mentors throughout the entire process was Russel Howcroft, CEO of the ad agency and well known as one of the stars of ABC's TV hit, The Gruen Transfer.
Older women are the new face of homelessness
Russel was one of those at the exclusive pre-screening of Roy's documentary last week and full of high praise for the emotionally-charged film which moved those there not only to tears but also to laughter.
The documentary follows the lives of six homeless men and women, including Roy himself. The others include Krystal who is 21, Keith who is in his 50s, Jon a young man in his 30s, Gabriel who is 35 and Maria who is in her 60s. All are currently homeless and all were willing to let their often harrowing stories be told as well as their ongoing battle to survive and to rebuild their lives.
Like many women her age who become homeless, Maria was a victim of domestic violence. Through Vinnies she found safety at last and now through Ozanam she is studying clothes design. Art is also helping helping Gabriel and Keith get back on their feet while Jon is rebuilding his life through music.
Meanwhile Krystal is at TAFE and studying for a career in mental health.
"I wanted to tell the truth about homelessless through the lives of these five as well as my own time being homeless. I wanted to show that homelessness is not about stereotypes but about people each with their own story," Roy says.
While "A Place Like this" is certain to garner rave reviews when it is finally released and may even win prestigious international prizes,  for Roy the experience of being homeless and having the opportunity to make this powerful documentary has affected him at a far deeper level.
"God put me there," he insists of his time at the Matthew Talbot Hostel. "God put me there to see and feel what it's like to be in that situation and to witness what it is like for others, and to let the world see that these are people like you and me, and that homelessness can happen to anyone."
Roy's time at Matthew Talbot changed his perspective about life and at 58 he says he finally understands what is important and what matters.
"Before this experience I was a typical businessman chasing material gain," he says. "But thanks to what happened to me, I have changed and am a better person and more compassionate of others and have a greater understanding of people."
Roy is now back on his feet as a businessman and commodities trader but he insists that his work on behalf of the homeless will continue to be his priority and his passion.
 

ARCHDIOCESE OF SYDNEY RELEASE

ASIA : SYRIA - LEBANON : NEW PATRIARCH OF GREEK-ORTHODOX CHURCH OF ANTIOCH

ASIA NEWS REPORT
The youthful 57-year-old was elected yesterday. In his first statement at a press conference, he reiterated the right of Christians to remain in the Middle East. He equally stressed the importance of dialogue with other Churches and with Muslims. "Christians are staying," he said. "This is their land."


Beirut (AsiaNews) - Youhanna Yazigi, who took the name of Youhanna X, is the new patriarch of the Greek-Orthodox Church of Antioch and the entire East. The youthful 57-year-old was elected yesterday at Balamand Monastery, near Tripoli, Lebanon. He succeeds Ignatius V Hazim, who passed away two weeks ago at the age of 92.
In his first statement at a press conference, he reiterated the right of Christians to remain in the Middle East. He equally stressed the importance of dialogue with other Churches and with Muslims. "Christians are staying," he said. "This is their land."
"We believe in dialogue. Relations with other Christian Churches for us are important. We are also open to our Muslim brothers," he said. "We are one family and our fate is shared."
Born in Latakia, Syria, and brother of Boulos, archbishop of Aleppo, the new patriarch was metropolitan of Western and Central Europe.
In 1983, he graduated from the theological faculty of the University of Thessaloniki, in Greece. In that same year, he graduated in music studies and was ordained into the priesthood.
He later taught theology at Balamand University and served as the bishop of Wade el-Nasser, where he founded a religious order and a seminary.
A keen observer of ecumenical issues, he took part in various congresses around the world.
Eighteen of the 20 who could vote took part in the ballot,  with12 or two thirds choosing Youhanna.
"This service is my cross," he said. "I ask you for your prayers and brotherly love so that the Church of Antioch can be a worthy image of the Bride of Christ."
"I ask for your prayers to be faithful to the ministry that was given me. Let us be part of this land, this ground. It is part of our being."
SHARED FROM ASIA NEWS IT 

AFRICA : DEM. REP. OF CONGO : 914,000 DISPLACED DUE TO VIOLENCE

Agenzia Fides REPORT - More than 600 schools have been destroyed in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, due to the instability for the presence of various armed movements that in addition to fighting each other, terrorize and harass civilians.
The complaint is by the Congolese office of UNICEF that notes that in the period from September to the present, 250 schools have been destroyed or occupied by armed militiamen in North and South Kivu. In several cases, school furniture and books were used as firewood.
240,000 students cannot continue their studies, while the internally displaced people in North Kivu are 914,000. Children who have lost their parents during the dramatic phases of the flight from the villages are 715, according to the data available by UNICEF.
The situation remains tense in Goma, capital of North Kivu, where despite the evacuation from the city of the M23 rebels, the local governor denounced that the guerrillas want to keep the population in "a state of psychosis" in order to put pressure on the Congolese government engaged in negotiations in Kampala. In the Ugandan capital negotiations are in fact in progress under the protection of the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), in order to find a peaceful solution to the crisis in North Kivu. Several Congolese observers, however, say that Rwanda and Uganda (which acts as a mediator) are not sincere in wanting peace, remembering the various UN reports denouncing the support of the M23 by Rwanda and Uganda.
Congolese President Joseph Kabila launched an appeal on December 15 to defend the national unity in the face of the M23 rebellion and "aggression of Rwanda." Speaking in front of deputies and senators who met in a joint session the Congolese President reported: "Once more, an unjust war has been imposed on us. Everything has been said about this war of aggression on behalf of Rwanda." (L.M.) 

EUROPE : IRELAND : ARCHBISHOPS SPEAK ON LEGISLATION AGAINST LIFE

IND. CATH. NEWS REPORT

Ireland: Archbishops respond to proposed changes in abortion law | Cardinal Seán Brady, Archbishop of Armagh; Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin; Archbishop Dermot Clifford, Archbishop of Cashel & Emly; and Archbishop Michael Neary, Archbishop of Tuam, abortion

Ireland: Wiki images

The four Catholic Archbishops of Ireland: Cardinal Seán Brady, Archbishop of Armagh; Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin; Archbishop Dermot Clifford, Archbishop of Cashel & Emly; and Archbishop Michael Neary, Archbishop of Tuam, have issued the following response to the decision today (18 December) by the Government to legislate for abortion:
'Today’s decision by the Irish Government to legislate for abortion should be of the utmost concern to all.
If what is being proposed were to become law, the careful balance between the equal right to life of a mother and her unborn child in current law and medical practice in Ireland would be fundamentally changed. It would pave the way for the direct and intentional killing of unborn children. This can never be morally justified in any circumstances.
The decision of the Supreme Court in the ‘X’ case unilaterally overturned the clear pro-life intention of the people of Ireland as expressed in Article 40.3.3 of our Constitution. To legislate on the basis of such a flawed judgement would be both tragic and unnecessary.
The dignity of the human person and the common good of humanity depend on our respect for the right to life of every person from the moment of conception to natural death. The right to life is the most fundamental of all rights. It is the very basis for every other right we enjoy as persons.
The lives of untold numbers of unborn children in this State now depend on the choices that will be made by our public representatives. The unavoidable choice that now faces all our public representatives is: will I chose to defend and vindicate the equal right to life of a mother and the child in her womb in all circumstances, or will I chose to licence the direct and intentional killing of the innocent baby in the womb?
Moreover, on a decision of such fundamental moral importance every public representative is entitled to complete respect for the freedom of conscience. No one has the right to force or coerce someone to act against their conscience. Respect for this right is the very foundation of a free, civilised and democratic society.
All involved, especially public representatives, must consider the profound moral questions that arise in responding to today’s announcement by the Government. We encourage all to pray that our public representatives will be given the wisdom and courage to do what is right.'
...

Please see below two recent statements from Catholic bishops concerning the promotion and protection of human life:

Initial response by the Irish Catholic Bishop’s Conference to the Report of the Expert Group on the Judgement in A,B and C v Ireland – 5 December 2012

A society that believes the right to life is the most fundamental of all rights cannot ignore the fact that abortion is first and foremost a moral issue.

As a society we have a particular responsibility to ensure this right is upheld on behalf of those who are defenceless, voiceless or vulnerable. This includes our duty as a society to defend and promote the equal right to life of a pregnant mother and the innocent and defenceless child in her womb when the life of either of these persons is at risk.

By virtue of their common humanity the life of a mother and her unborn baby are both sacred. They have an equal right to life. The Catholic Church has never taught that the life of a child in the womb should be preferred to that of a mother. Where a seriously ill pregnant woman needs medical treatment which may put the life of her baby at risk, such treatments are morally permissible provided every effort has been made to save the life of both the mother and her baby.

Abortion, understood as the direct and intentional destruction of an unborn baby, is gravely immoral in all circumstances. This is different from medical treatments which do not directly and intentionally seek to end the life of the unborn baby.

Current law and medical guidelines in Ireland allow nurses and doctors in Irish hospitals to apply this vital distinction in practice. This has been an important factor in ensuring that Irish hospitals are among the safest and best in the world in terms of medical care for both a mother and her unborn baby during pregnancy. As a country this is something we should cherish, promote and protect.

The Report of the Expert Group on the Judgement in A, B and C v Ireland has put forward options that could end the practice of making this vital ethical distinction in Irish hospitals. Of the four options presented by the Report, three involve abortion – the direct and intentional killing of an unborn child. This can never be morally justified. The judgement of the European Court of Human Rights does not oblige the Irish Government to legislate for abortion.

Other aspects of the Report also give rise to concerns. These include, but are not limited to the fact that:
The judgement of the European Court of Human Rights permits options on this matter of fundamental moral, social and constitutional importance that are not offered by this Report. This includes the option of introducing a constitutional prohibition on abortion or another form of constitutional amendment to reverse the ‘X-case’ judgement.
The Report provides no ethical analysis of the options available, even though this is first and foremost a moral issue and consideration of the ethical dimension was included in the Terms of Reference.
The Report takes no account of the risks involved in trying to legislate for so-called ‘limited abortion’ within the context of the ‘X-case’ judgement. The ‘X-case’ judgement includes the threat of suicide as grounds for an abortion. International experience shows that allowing abortion on the grounds of mental health effectively opens the floodgates for abortion.

The Report also identifies Guidelines as an option. It notes that Guidelines can help to ensure consistency in the delivery of medical treatment. If Guidelines can provide greater clarity as to when life-saving treatment may be provided to a pregnant mother or her unborn child within the existing legislative framework, and where the direct and intentional killing of either person continues to be excluded, then such ethically sound Guidelines may offer a way forward.

A matter of this importance deserves sufficient time for a calm, rational and informed debate to take place before any decision about the options offered by the Expert Group Report are taken. All involved, especially public representatives, must consider the profound moral questions that arise in responding to this Report. Abortion is gravely immoral in all circumstances, no matter how ‘limited’ access to abortion may be.

.....
Statement by the Standing Committee of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference on the equal and inalienable right to life of a mother and her unborn child – 19 November 2012

At the conclusion of the meeting of the Standing Committee of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference today in the Columba Centre, Saint Patrick’s College, Maynooth, the following statement has been issued:

The death of Mrs Savita Halappanavar and her unborn child in University Hospital Galway on the 28 October last was a devastating personal tragedy for her husband and family. It has stunned our country. We share the anguish and sorrow expressed by so many at the tragic loss of a mother and her baby in these circumstances and we express our sympathy to the family of Mrs Halappanavar and all those affected by these events.

In light of the widespread discussion following the tragic death of Mrs Halappanavar and her unborn baby, we wish to reaffirm some aspects of Catholic moral teaching. These were set out in our recently published Day for Life message on 7 October last, available on www.chooselife2012.ie :

The Catholic Church has never taught that the life of a child in the womb should be preferred to that of a mother. By virtue of their common humanity a mother and her unborn baby are both sacred with an equal right to life.

Where a seriously ill pregnant woman needs medical treatment which may put the life of her baby at risk, such treatments are ethically permissible provided every effort has been made to save the life of both the mother and her baby.

Whereas abortion is the direct and intentional destruction of an unborn baby and is gravely immoral in all circumstances, this is different from medical treatments which do not directly and intentionally seek to end the life of the unborn baby. Current law and medical guidelines in Ireland allow nurses and doctors in Irish hospitals to apply this vital distinction in practice while upholding the equal right to life of both a mother and her unborn baby.

Some would claim that the unborn baby is less human or less deserving of life. Advances in genetics and technology make it clear that at fertilisation a new, unique and genetically complete human being comes into existence. From that moment onwards each of us did not grow and develop into a human being, but grew and developed as a human being.

With many other religious and ethical traditions we believe in upholding the equal and inalienable right to life of a mother and her unborn child in our laws and medical practice. This helps to ensure that women and babies receive the highest standard of care and protection during pregnancy. Indeed, international statistics confirm that Ireland, without abortion, remains one of the safest countries in the world in which to be pregnant and to give birth. This is a position that should continue to be cherished and strengthened in the interests of mothers and unborn children in Ireland.
Source: Irish Catholic Communications Office
SHARED FROM IND. CATH. NEWS 


TODAY'S SAINT: DEC. 18: ST. WINEBALD

 
St. Winebald
BENEDICTINE ABBOT AND MISSIONARY
Feast: December 18


Information:
Feast Day:December 18
Born:Wessex, England
Died:18 December 761 at Heidenheim, Germany
Winebald is one of those amazing English missionaries who evangelized Europe, leaving behind a flourishing Catholicism and a number of monasteries and laying the beginnings of Christianity in what is now Germany, France, Holland, Austria, Belgium, and Luxembourg.
St. Winebald was the son of a West Saxon nobleman, St. Richard, and the brother of St. Willibald. With his father and brother he made a pilgrimage to Rome in 721. His father died in Italy, and Winebald remained in Rome for further study, like his countrymen before him, St. Wilfrid and St. Benedict Biscop. He returned to England and brought back to Rome some of his relatives to begin a monastic life in the holy city.
When St. Boniface came to Rome in 739, he recruited Winebald for the German missions, ordained him a priest, and put him in charge of churches in Germany and Bavaria. His brother, Willibald, who was now bishop of Eichstatt, asked Winebald to found a monastery for the training of priests and as a center of learning. Their sister, St. Walburga, came from England to found a convent, and both the monastery and the convent were founded at Heidenheim.
He established the rule of St. Benedict in his monastery, and Heidenheim became an important center of learning in the missionary territory. Because of illness, Winebald was not able to carry on the missionary work that he desired and yearned to end his days at Monte Cassino.
In 761, Winebald visited St. Boniface's shrine at Fulda and on the way home to  Heidenheim became very sick. When he reached Heidenheim, he became weaker and weaker and after giving his monks a few last words he died on December 18, 761. His tomb became a local shrine and the site of pilgrimages.


Matthew 1: 18 - 25

18Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child of the Holy Spirit;19and her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly.20But as he considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, "Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit;21she will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins."22All this took place to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:23"Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and his name shall be called Emmanuel" (which means, God with us).24When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took his wife,25but knew her not until she had borne a son; and he called his name Jesus.

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