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Sunday, July 31, 2011
Since May 27 the police in Nepal have held William Gomes in custody for no reason. The activist was trying to reach Hong Kong via Nepal after being tortured and threatened by the authorities of Dhaka for his activities on behalf of Christians. Spokesman of the main opposition party accuses the government of Nepal of serious violations of human rights and calls on the Prime Minister to resign.
Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - After fleeing from Bangladesh after having been tortured by police, William Nicholas Gomes, AsiaNews correspondent and activist for human rights, has for months been in police custody in Kathmandu. Since 27 May the authorities are doing everything possible to deport him, but to date have not provided any explanation.
"I ran away to Nepal to reach Hong Kong and save my life - Gomes says - with the help of the Asian Human Rights Commission. When I went to the office of Immigration, officials delayed the process and then tried to deport me. " The activist said that on July 9, while trying to catch a plane to Hong Kong, the police searched his luggage for the presence of drugs and other banned substances, but found nothing.
"After the control - he says - I was stopped from boarding saying that my documents were not valid for travel abroad. Without further explanation they put me in detention, guarded by two policemen with anti-drug dogs, forcing me to ask the Bangladesh embassy for permission to transit. " The activist said he had obtained all the necessary documents for travel abroad and transit in foreign countries. "There is no reason for detention - he said - I have a visa to stay legally in Nepal, but the police consider me a criminal."
On 21 May last men in a dark car kidnapped and tortured William Gomes, a Muslim convert to Christianity. The man, a member of the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) and founder of the Christian Development Alternatives (CDA - a humanitarian organization), was stripped naked, forced to the ground and questioned for nearly five hours. These men, including a native English-speaker, accused him of being in contact with Pakistani intelligence (ISI - Inter Service Intelligence) and receiving bribes in order to "damage the Bangladesh Army." Moreover, they charged that Khaleda Zia had paid him to discredit Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. After the death threats to him and his family, Gomes vowed to leave the AHRC and was released.
Gomes says he's concerned about the lives of his family who are still in Bangladesh. "My wife, my children are in danger. I have become a man without a country, my government is working against me. Where should I go to save my life and that of my loved ones? ". He calls on all Catholics to convince the Nepalese government to release him and save his life.
In recent months the Gomes case has aroused much concern between the Nepali human rights organizations and opposition parties who accuse the authorities of acting without any authority or mandate, in violation of democratic norms and civil rights in the country.
According to Subodh Pyakurel, Informal Sector Service Centre for Human Rights in Nepal, the authorities have no right to hold the man in custody. "When I spoke with the airport authorities to help Gomes they couldn’t give me any concrete reason. The police can not prevent him from reaching Hong Kong and does not even have the right to deport him. "
Arjun Narsingh KC, spokesperson of Nepali Congress, the country's main opposition party, said: "How can our government ensure respect for human rights, when for no reason it holds an activist within its borders." After this scandal, Arjun invites the Prime Minister to resign and called on police to release Gomes allowing him transit to Hong Kong.
Screenshot from the report on AdelaideNow
CATH NEWS REPORT- The feast day of Saint Mary MacKillop will be celebrated next Monday to mark the anniversary of her death, the first since her canonisation, reports the Advertiser on AdelaideNow.
Archbishop of Adelaide Philip Wilson said: "As Australia's first saint, it is fitting the liturgy of the Church in Australia on her feast day should reflect that by having the highest liturgical rank."
The celebration has been raised to the status of solemnity with the mass including a first and second reading.
Christian Brothers College deputy principal Shaun Clarke, whose school will take part in the celebrations, said the mass was important in recognising the work done by the Australian St Mary.
The celebration will be held at St Francis Xavier Cathedral in Adelaide from 12.10pm with St Mary MacKillop College and the Sisters of St Joseph celebrating the event with a mass in the college gymnasium from 10am.
To better understand the figure of the saint here are some excerpts of his biography from the site of the Italian Catholic Church.
St. Justin de Jacobis was born in San Fele (Potenza)on October 9, 1800.
Around 1812, he and his family moved to Naples, perhaps for economic reasons. During the beginning of his literary and humanistic studies, Justin was drawn by an intense participation in the spiritual life and that was how, in 1818, the Carmelite Father Mariano Cacace understood the vocation of the young man, directing him to the community of Vincentian missionaries. Continuing his studies, Justin moved to Puglia and it was in this land in 1824 in Oria, he was ordained a priest. In 1836 he returned to Naples, while a cholera epidemic decimated the city up to 100 people a day; even in that circumstance, the priest demonstrated his spirit of dedication to the many sufferers who the Vincentians directly took care of.
In 1838, the Vincentian Father Joseph Sapeto embarked on a mission to Massawa and, realizing the strong commitment that this entailed, he informed Pope Gregory XVI on several occasions about the need to strengthen it. So it was then that Cardinal Fransoni, Prefect of the Congregation of Rome, after meeting randomly in Naples Justin de Jacobis and having appreciated his outstanding virtues, proposed to the general director of the Vincentians to invite Justin to accept the mission in Ethiopia. De Jacobis who had previously expressed a desire to go on foreign missions, accepted the invitation. On May 24, 1839 he began his journey to Ethiopia and, through Malta, Naxos (Greece), Syria, Alexandria, Cairo and Massawa, on October 13 Justin arrived at Adowa, where he met Father Joseph Sapeto, founder of the mission. Justin touched the region of Tigray, and settled at Adowa.
After Adowa, Justin and his large number of indigenous followers founded other missionary centers in Gondar, Enticciò, Guala, Alitiena, Hala, Hebo, Keren. A Guala, in particular, Justin founded his own seminary to ensure a place where priests of the native place got to know Catholic beliefs. With this realization, the priest satisfied his strong belief that, as he himself wrote, "A priest from Abyssinia, deeply Catholic and sufficiently trained, thanks to his perfect knowledge of the language, customs and prejudices of his countrymen - knowledge that a European is not likely to have- works with much higher success than that of a European". Of all the places visited in the missionary life of Justin de Jacobis, the town of Hebo holds great importance, to the point that his remains are there preserved and venerated by pilgrims from every area of Ethiopia.
On January 8, 1849, Justin was ordained a Bishop. On July 1854, an edict was issued which required the people to adhere to the schismatic faith, otherwise the missionaries would have had to immediately leave Ethiopia. The missionaries ignored the imposition of Ras and were arrested. Justin spent 4 months in a tiny cell. The hatred and cruelty with which the missionaries were treated, however, created a strong sense of disapproval on behalf of the population and so it was in November 1854 that Justin was released from prison.
After the death of his brother Ghebre Michael due to the tortures in prison - the Church, on September 30, 1926, included him in the book of the blessed -, Justin returned to Gondar, and there he devoted himself, in assisting the sick of cholera, which broke out in 1858. He died on July 31, 1860 in the Alghedien Valley, along the path that leads from Massawa to the plateau of Hala. (L.M.)
St. Ignatius of Loyola
FOUNDER OF THE SOCIETY OF JESUS
Feast: July 31
Youngest son of Don Beltrán Yañez de Oñez y Loyola and Marina Saenz de Lieona y Balda (the name López de Recalde, though accepted by the Bollandist Father Pien, is a copyist's blunder), b. in 1491 at the castle of Loyola above Azpeitia in Guipuscoa; d. at Rome, 31 July, 1556. The family arms are: per pale, or, seven bends gules (?vert) for Oñez; argent, pot and chain sable between two grey wolves rampant, for Loyola. The saint was baptized Inigo, after St. Enecus (Innicus), Abbot of Oña: the name Ignatius was assumed in later years, while he was residing in Rome. For the saint's genealogy, see Perez (op. cit. below, 131); Michel (op. cit. below, II, 383); Polanco (Chronicon, I, 51646). For the date of birth cfr. Astráin, I, 3 S.
I. Conversion (1491-1521)
At an early age he was made a cleric. We do not know when, or why he was released from clerical obligations. He was brought up in the household of Juan Velásquez de Cuellar, contador mayor to Ferdinand and Isabella, and in his suite probably attended the court from time to time, though not in the royal service. This was perhaps the time of his greatest dissipation and laxity. He was affected and extravagant about his hair and dress, consumed with the desire of winning glory, and would seem to have been sometimes involved in those darker intrigues, for which handsome young courtiers too often think themselves licensed. How far he went on the downward course is still unproved. The balance of evidence tends to show that his own subsequent humble confessions of having been a great sinner should not be treated as pious exaggerations. But we have no details, not even definite charges. In 1517 a change for the better seems to have taken place; Velásquez died and Ignatius took service in the army. The turning-point of his life came in 1521. While the French were besieging the citadel of Pampeluna, a cannon ball, passing between Ignatius' legs, tore open the left calf. and broke the right shin (Whit-Tuesday, 20 May, 1521). With his fall the garrison lost heart and surrendered, but he was well treated by the French and carried on a litter to Loyola, where his leg had to be rebroken and reset, and afterwards a protruding end of the bone was sawn off, and the limb, having been shortened by clumsy setting, was stretched out by weights. All these pains were undergone voluntarily, without uttering a cry or submitting to be bound. But the pain and weakness which followed were so great that the patient began to fail and sink. On the eve of Sts. Peter and Paul, however, a turn for the better took place, and he threw off his fever.
So far Ignatius had shown none but the ordinary virtues of the Spanish officer. His dangers and sufferings has doubtless done much to purge his soul, but there was no idea yet of remodelling his life on any higher ideals. Then, in order to divert the weary hours of convalescence, he asked for the romances of chivalry, his favourite reading, but there were none in the castle, and instead they brought him the lives of Christ and of the saints, and he read them in the same quasi-competitive spirit with which he read the achievements of knights and warriors. "Suppose I were to rival this saint in fasting, that one in endurance, that other in pilgrimages." He would then wander off into thoughts of chivalry, and service to fair ladies, especially to one of high rank, whose name is unknown. Then all of a sudden, he became conscious that the after-effect of these dreams was to make him dry and dissatisfied, while the ideas of falling into rank among the saints braced and strengthened him, and left him full of joy and peace. Next it dawned on him that the former ideas were of the world, the latter God-sent; finally, worldly thoughts began to lose their hold, while heavenly ones grew clearer and dearer. One night as he lay awake, pondering these new lights, "he saw clearly", so says his autobiography, "the image of Our Lady with the Holy Child Jesus", at whose sight for a notable time he felt a reassuring sweetness, which eventually left him with such a loathing of his past sins, and especially for those of the flesh, that every unclean imagination seemed blotted out from his soul, and never again was there the least consent to any carnal thought. His conversion was now complete. Everyone noticed that he would speak of nothing but spiritual things, and his elder brother begged him not to take any rash or extreme resolution, which might compromise the honour of their family.
II. Spiritual Formation (1522-24)
When Ignatius left Loyola he had no definite plans for the future, except that he wished to rival all the saints had done in the way of penance. His first care was to make a general confession at the famous sanctuary of Montserrat, where, after three days of self-examination, and carefully noting his sins, he confessed, gave to the poor the rich clothes in which he had come, and put on garment of sack-cloth reaching to his feet. His sword and dagger he suspended at Our Lady's altar, and passed the night watching before them. Next morning, the feast of the Annunciation, 1522, after Communion, he left the sanctuary, not knowing whither he went. But he soon fell in with a kind woman, Iñes Pascual, who showed him a cavern near the neighbouring town of Manresa, where he might retire for prayer, austerities, and contemplation, while he lived on alms. But here, instead of obtaining greater peace, he was consumed with the most troublesome scruples. Had he confessed this sin? Had he omitted that circumstance? At one time he was violently tempted to end his miseries by suicide, on which he resolved neither to eat nor to drink (unless his life was in danger), until God granted him the peace which he desired, and so he continued until his confessor stopped him at the end of the week. At last, however, he triumphed over all obstacles, and then abounded in wonderful graces and visions. It was at this time, too, that he began to make notes of his spiritual experiences, notes which grew into the little book of "The Spiritual Exercises". God also afflicted him with severe sicknesses, when he was looked after by friends in the public hospital; for many felt drawn towards him, and he requited their many kind offices by teaching them how to pray and instructing them in spiritual matters. Having recovered health, and acquired sufficient experience to guide him in his new life, he commenced his long-meditated migration to the Holy Land. From the first he had looked forward to it as leading to a life of heroic penance; now he also regarded it as a school in which he might learn how to realize clearly and to conform himself perfectly to Christ's life. The voyage was fully as painful as he had conceived. Poverty, sickness, exposure, fatigue, starvation, dangers of shipwreck and capture, prisons, blows, contradictions, these were his daily lot; and on his arrival the Franciscans, who had charge of the holy places, commanded him to return under pain of sin. Ignatius demanded what right they had thus to interfere with a pilgrim like himself, and the friars explained that, to prevent many troubles which had occurred in finding ransoms for Christian prisoners, the pope had given them the power and they offered to show him their Bulls. Ignatius at once submitted, though it meant altering his whole plan of life, refused to look at the proferred Bulls, and was back at Barcelona about march, 1524.
III. Studies And Companions (1521-39)
Ignatius left Jerusalem in the dark as to his future and "asking himself as he went, quid agendum" (Autobiography, 50). Eventually he resolved to study, in order to be of greater help to others. To studies he therefore gave eleven years, more than a third of his remaining life. Later he studied among school-boys at Barcelona, and early in 1526 he knew enough to proceed to his philosophy at the University of Alcalá. But here he met with many troubles to be described later, and at the end of 1527 he entered the University of Salamanca, whence, his trials continuing, he betook himself to Paris (June, 1528), and there with great method repeated his course of arts, taking his M. A. on 14 March, 1535. Meanwhile theology had been begun, and he had taken the licentiate in 1534; the doctorate he never took, as his health compelled him to leave Paris in March, 1535. Though Ignatius, despite his pains, acquired no great erudition, he gained many practical advantages from his course of education. To say nothing of knowledge sufficient to find such information as he needed afterwards to hold his own in the company of the learned, and to control others more erudite than himself, he also became thoroughly versed in the science of education, and learned by experience how the life of prayer and penance might be combined with that of teaching and study, an invaluable acquirement to the future founder of the Society of Jesus. The labours of Ignatius for others involved him in trials without number. At Barcelona, he was beaten senseless, and his companion killed, at the instigation of some worldlings vexed at being refused entrance into a convent which he had reformed. At Alcalá, a meddlesome inquisitor, Figueroa, harassed him constantly, and once automatically imprisoned him for two months. This drove him to Salamanca, where, worse still, he was thrown into the common prison, fettered by the foot to his companion Calisto, which indignity only drew from Ignatius the characteristic words, "There are not so many handcuffs and chains in Salamanca, but that I desire even more for the love of God."
In Paris his trials were very varied—from poverty, plague, works of charity, and college discipline, on which account he was once sentenced to a public flogging by Dr. Govea, the rector of Collège Ste-Barbe, but on his explaining his conduct, the rector as publicly begged his pardon. There was but one delation to the inquisitors, and, on Ignatius requesting a prompt settlement, the Inquisitor Ori told him proceedings were therewith quashed. We notice a certain progression in Ignatius' dealing with accusations against him. The first time he allowed them to cease without any pronouncement being given in his favour. The second time he demurred at Figueroa wanting to end in this fashion. The third time, after sentence had been passed, he appealed to he Archbishop of Toledo against some of its clauses. Finally he does not await sentence, but goes at once to the judge to urge an inquiry, and eventually he made it his practice to demand sentence, whenever reflection was cast upon his orthodoxy. (Records of Ignatius' legal proceedings at Azpeitia, in 1515; at Alclla in 1526, 1527; at Venice, 1537; at Rome in 1538, will be found in "Scripta de S. Ignatio", pp. 580-620.) Ignatius had now for the third time gathered companions around him. His first followers in Spain had persevered for a time, even amid the severe trials of imprisonment, but instead of following Ignatius to Paris, as they had agreed to do, they gave him up. In Paris too the first to follow did not persevere long, but of the third band not one deserted him. They were (St.) Peter Faber (q.v.), a Genevan Savoyard; (St.) Francis Xavier (q.v.), of Navarre; James Laynez, Alonso Salmerón, and Nicolás Bobadilla, Spaniards; Simón Rodríguez, a Portuguese. Three others joined soon after—Claude Le Jay, a Genevan Savoyard; Jean Codure and Paschase Broët, French. Progress is to be noted in the way Ignatius trained his companions. The first were exercised in the same severe exterior mortifications, begging, fasting, going barefoot, etc., which the saint was himself practising. But though this discipline had prospered in a quiet country place like Manresa, it had attracted an objectionable amount of criticism at the University of Alcalá. At Paris dress and habits were adapted to the life in great towns; fasting, etc., was reduced; studies and spiritual exercises were multiplied, and alms funded.
The only bond between Ignatius' followers so far was devotion to himself, and his great ideal of leading in the Holy Land a life as like as possible to Christ's. On 15 August, 1534, they took the vows of poverty and chastity at Montmartre (probably near the modern Chapelle de St-Denys, Rue Antoinette), and a third vow to go to the Holy Land after two years, when their studies were finished. Six months later Ignatius was compelled by bad health to return to his native country, and on recovery made his way slowly to Bologna, where, unable through ill health to study, he devoted himself to active works of charity till his companions came from Paris to Venice (6 January, 1537) on the way to the Holy Land. Finding further progress barred by the war with the Turks, they now agreed to await for a year the opportunity of fulfilling their vow, after which they would put themselves at the pope's disposal. Faber and some others, going to Rome in Lent, got leave for all to be ordained. They were eventually made priests on St. John Baptist's day. But Ignatius took eighteen months to prepare for his first Mass.
IV. Foundation Of The Society
By the winter of 1537, the year of waiting being over, it was time to offer their services to the pope. The others being sent in pairs to neighboring university towns, Ignatius with Faber and Laynez started for Rome. At La Storta, a few miles before reaching the city, Ignatius had a noteworthy vision. He seemed to see the Eternal Father associating him with His Son, who spoke the words: Ego vobis Romae propitius ero. Many have thought this promise simply referred to the subsequent success of the order there. Ignatius' own interpretation was characteristic: "I do not know whether we shall be crucified in Rome; but Jesus will be propitious." Just before or just after this, Ignatius had suggested for the title of their brotherhood "The Company of Jesus". Company was taken in its military sense, and in those days a company was generally known by its captain's name. In the Latin Bull of foundation, however, they were called "Societas Jesu". We first hear of the term Jesuit in 1544, applied as a term of reproach by adversaries. It had been used in the fifteenth century to describe in scorn someone who cantingly interlarded his speech with repetitions of the Holy Name. In 1522 it was still regarded as a mark of scorn, but before very long the friends of the society saw that they could take it in a good sense, and, though never used by Ignatius, it was readily adopted (Pollen, "The Month", June, 1909). Paul III having received the fathers favourably, all were summoned to Rome to work under the pope's eyes. At this critical moment an active campaign of slander was opened by one Fra Matteo Mainardi (who eventually died in open heresy), and a certain Michael who had been refused admission to the order. It was not till 18 November, 1538, that Ignatius obtained from the governor of Rome an honourable sentence, still extent, in his favour. The thoughts of the fathers were naturally occupied with a formula of their intended mode of life to submit to the pope; and in March, 1539, they began to meet in the evenings to settle the matter.
Hitherto without superior, rule or tradition, they had prospered most remarkably. Why not continue as they had begun? The obvious answer was that without some sort of union, some houses for training postulants, they were practically doomed to die out with the existing members, for the pope already desired to send them about as missioners from place to place. This point was soon agreed to, but when the question arose whether they should, by adding a vow of obedience to their existing vows, form themselves into a compact religious order, or remain, as they were, a congregation of secular priests, opinions differed much and seriously. Not only had they done so well without strict rules, but (to mention only one obstacle, which was in fact not overcome afterwards without great difficulty), there was the danger, if they decided for an order, that the pope might force them to adopt some ancient rule, which would mean the end of all their new ideas. The debate on this point continued for several weeks, but the conclusion in favour of a life under obedience was eventually reached unanimously. After this, progress was faster, and by 24 June some sixteen resolutions had been decided on, covering the main points of the proposed institute. Thence Ignatius drew up in five sections the first "Formula Instituti", which was submitted to the pope, who gave a viva voce approbation 3 September, 1539, but Cardinal Guidiccioni, the head of the commission appointed to report on the "Formula", was of the view that a new order should not be admitted, and with that the chances of approbation seemed to be at an end. Ignatius and his companions, undismayed, agreed to offer up 4000 Masses to obtain the object desired, and after some time the cardinal unexpectedly changed his mind, approved the "Formula" and the Bull "Regimini militantis Ecclesiae" (27 September, 1540), which embodies and sanctions it, was issued, but the members were not to exceed sixty (this clause was abrogated after two years). In April, 1541, Ignatius was, in spite of his reluctance, elected the first general, and on 22 April he and his companions made their profession in St. Paul Outside the Walls. The society was now fully constituted.
V. The Book Of The Spiritual Exercises
This work originated in Ignatius' experiences, while he was at Loyola in 1521, and the chief meditations were probably reduced to their present shapes during his life at Manresa in 1522, at the end of which period he had begun to teach them to others. In the process of 1527 at Salamanca, they are spoken of for the first time as the "Book of Exercises". The earliest extant text is of the year 1541. At the request of St. Francis Boria. the book was examined by papal censors and a solemn approbation given by Paul III in the Brief "Pastoralis Officii" of 1548. "The Spiritual Exercises" are written very concisely, in the form of a handbook for the priest who is to explain them, and it is practically impossible to describe them without making them, just as it might be impossible to explain Nelson's "Sailing Orders" to a man who knew nothing of ships or the sea. The idea of the work is to help the exercitant to find out what the will of God is in regard to his future, and to give him energy and courage to follow that will. The exercitant (under ideal circumstances) is guided through four weeks of meditations: the first week on sin and its consequences, the second on Christ's life on earth, the third on his passion, the fourth on His risen life; and a certain number of instructions (called "rules", "additions", "notes") are added to teach him how to pray, how to avoid scruples, how to elect a vocation in life without being swayed by the love of self or of the world. In their fullness they should, according to Ignatius' idea, ordinarily be made once or twice only; but in part (from three to four days) that may be most profitably made annually, and are now commonly called "retreats", from the seclusion or retreat from the world in which the exercitant lives. More popular selections are preached to the people in church and are called "missions". The stores of spiritual wisdom contained in the "Book of Exercises" are truly astonishing, and their author is believed to have been inspired while drawing them up. (See also next section.) Sommervogel enumerates 292 writers among the Jesuits alone, who have commented on the whole book, to say nothing of commentators on parts (e.g. the meditations), who are far more numerous still. But the best testimony to the work is the frequency with which the exercises are made. In England (for which alone statistics are before the writer) the educated people who make retreats number annually about 22,000, while the number who attend popular expositions of the Exercises in "missions" is approximately 27,000, out of a total Catholic population of 2,000,000.
VI. The Constitutions Of The Society
Ignatius was commissioned in 1541 to draw them up, but he did not begin to do so until 1547, having occupied the mean space with introducing customs tentatively, which were destined in time to become laws. In 1547 Father Polaneo became his secretary, and with his intelligent aid the first draft of the constitutions was made between 1547 and 1550, and simultaneously pontifical approbation was asked for a new edition of the "Formula". Julius III conceded this by the Bull "Exposcit debitum", 21 July, 1550. At the same time a large number of the older fathers assembled to peruse the first draft of the constitutions, and though none of them made any serious objections, Ignatius' next recension (1552) shows a fair amount of changes. This revised version was then published and put into force throughout the society, a few explanations being added here and there to meet difficulties as they arose. These final touches were being added by the saint up till the time of his death, after which the first general congregation of the society ordered them to be printed, and they have never been touched since. The true way of appreciating the constitutions of the society is to study them as they are carried into practice by the Jesuits themselves, and for this, reference may be made to the articles on the SOCIETY OF JESUS. A few points, however, in which Ignatius' institute differed from the older orders may be mentioned here. They are:
1.the vow not to accept ecclesiastical dignities; 2.increased probations. The novitiate is prolonged from one year to two, with a third year, which usually falls after the priesthood. Candidates are moreover at first admitted to simple vows only, solemn vows coming much later on; 3.the Society does not keep choir; 4.it does not have a distinctive religious habit; 5.it does not accept the direction of convents; 6.it is not governed by a regular triennial chapter; 7.it is also said to have been the first order to undertake officially and by virtue of its constitutions active works such as the following:
—foreign missions, at the pope's bidding;
—the education of youth of all classes;
—the instruction of the ignorant and the poor;
—ministering to the sick, to prisoners, etc.
The above points give no conception of the originality with which Ignatius has handled all parts of his subject, even those common to all orders. It is obvious that he must have acquired some knowledge of other religious constitutions, especially during the years of inquiry (1541-1547), when he was on terms of intimacy with religious of every class. But witnesses, who attended him, tell us that he wrote without any books before him except the Missal. Though his constitutions of course embody technical terms to be found in other rules, and also a few stock phrases like "the old man's staff", and "the corpse carried to any place", the thought is entirely original, and would seem to have been God-guided throughout. By a happy accident we still possess his journal of prayers for forty days, during which he was deliberating the single point of poverty in churches. It shows that in making up his mind he was marvelously aided by heavenly lights, intelligence, and visions. If, as we may surely infer, the whole work was equally assisted by grace, its heavenly inspiration will not be doubtful. The same conclusion is probable true of "The Spiritual Exercises".
VII. Later Life And Death
The later years of Ignatius were spent in partial retirement, the correspondence inevitable in governing the Society leaving no time for those works of active ministry which in themselves he much preferred. His health too began to fail. In 1551, when he had gathered the elder fathers to revise the constitutions, he laid his resignation of the generalate in their hands, but they refused to accept it then or later, when the saint renewed his prayer. In 1554 Father Nadal was given the powers of vicar-general, but it was often necessary to send him abroad as commissary, and in the end Ignatius continued, with Polanco's aid, to direct everything. With most of his first companions he had to part soon. Rodríguez started on 5 March, 1540, for Lisbon, where he eventually founded the Portuguese province, of which he was made provincial on 10 October, 1546. St. Francis Xavier (q.v.) followed Rodríguez immediately, and became provincial of India in 1549. In September, 1541, Salmeron and Broet started for their perilous mission to Ireland, which they reached (via Scotland) next Lent. But Ireland, the prey to Henry VIII's barbarous violence, could not give the zealous missionaries a free field for the exercise of the ministries proper to their institute. All Lent they passed in Ulster, flying from persecutors, and doing in secret such good as they might. With difficulty they reached Scotland, and regained Rome, Dec., 1542. The beginnings of the Society in Germany are connected with St. Peter Faber (q.v.), Blessed Peter Canisius (q.v.), Le Jay, and Bobadilla in 1542. In 1546 Laynez and Salmeron were nominated papal theologians for the Council of Trent, where Canisius, Le Jay, and Covillon also found places. In 1553 came the picturesque, but not very successful mission of Nuñez Barretto as Patriarch of Abyssinia. For all these missions Ignatius wrote minute instructions, many of which are still extant. He encouraged and exhorted his envoys in their work by his letters, while the reports they wrote back to him form our chief source of information on the missionary triumphs achieved. Though living alone in Rome, it was he who in effect lad, directed, and animated his subjects all the world over.
The two most painful crosses of this period were probably the suits with Isabel Roser and Simón Rodríguez. The former lady had been one of Ignatius' first and most esteemed patronesses during his beginnings in Spain. She came to Rome later on and persuaded Ignatius to receive a vow of obedience to him, and she was afterwards joined by two or three other ladies. But the saint found that the demands they made on his time were more than he could possibly allow them. "They caused me more trouble", he is reported to have said, "than the whole of the Society", and he obtained from the pope a relaxation of the vow he had accepted. A suit with Roser followed, which she lost, and Ignatius forbade his sons hereafter to become ex officio directors to convents of nuns (Scripta de S. Ignatio, pp. 652-5). Painful though this must have been to a man so loyal as Ignatius, the difference with Rodríguez , one of his first companions, must have been more bitter still. Rodríguez had founded the Province of Portugal, and brought it in a short time to a high state of efficiency. But his methods were not precisely those of Ignatius, and, when new men of Ignatius' own training came under him, differences soon made themselves felt. A struggle ensued in which Rodríguez unfortunately took sides against Ignatius' envoys. The results for the newly formed province were disastrous. Well-nigh half of its members had to be expelled before peace was established; but Ignatius did not hesitate. Rodriguez having been recalled to Rome, the new provincial being empowered ti dismiss him if he refused, he demanded a formal trial, which Ignatius, foreseeing the results, endeavoured to ward off. But on Simón's insistence a full court of inquiry was granted, whose proceedings are now printed and it unanimously condemned Rodriguez to penance and banishment from the province (Scripta etc., pp. 666-707). Of all his external works, those nearest his heart, to judge by his correspondence, were the building and foundation of the Roman College (1551), and of the German College (1552). For their sake he begged, worked, and borrowed with splendid insistence until his death. The success of the first was ensured by the generosity of St. Francis Borgia, before he entered the Society. The latter was still in a struggling condition when Ignatius died, but his great ideas have proved the true and best foundation of both.
In the summer of 1556 the saint was attacked by Roman fever. His doctors did not foresee any serious consequences, but the saint did. On 30 July, 1556, he asked for the last sacraments and the papal blessing, but he was told that no immediate danger threatened. Next morning at daybreak, the infirmarian found him lying in peaceful prayer, so peaceful that he did not at once perceive that the saint was actually dying. When his condition was realized, the last blessing was given, but the end came before the holy oils could be fetched. Perhaps he had prayed that his death, like his life, might pass without any demonstration. He was beatified by Paul V on 27 July, 1609, and canonized by Gregory XV on 22 May, 1622. His body lies under the altar designed by Pozzi in the Gesù. Though he died in the sixteenth year from the foundation of the Society, that body already numbered about 1000 religious (of whom, however, only 35 were yet professed) with 100 religious houses, arranged in 10 provinces. (Sacchini, op. cit. infra., lib.1, cc, i, nn. 1-20.) It is impossible to sketch in brief Ignatius' grand and complex character: ardent yet restrained, fearless, resolute, simple, prudent, strong, and loving. The Protestant and Jansenistic conception of him as a restless, bustling pragmatist bears no correspondence at all with the peacefulness and perseverance which characterized the real man. That he was a strong disciplinarian is true. In a young and rapidly growing body that was inevitable; and the age loved strong virtues. But if he believed in discipline as an educative force, he despised any other motives for action except the love of God and man. It was by studying Ignatius as a ruler that Xavier learnt the principle, "the company of Jesus ought to be called the company of love and conformity of souls". (Ep., 12 Jan., 1519).
|Isaiah 55: 1 - 3|
|1||"Ho, every one who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.|
|2||Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Hearken diligently to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in fatness.|
|3||Incline your ear, and come to me; hear, that your soul may live; and I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David.|
|Psalms 145: 8 - 9, 15 - 18|
|8||The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.|
|9||The LORD is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made.|
|15||The eyes of all look to thee, and thou givest them their food in due season.|
|16||Thou openest thy hand, thou satisfiest the desire of every living thing.|
|17||The LORD is just in all his ways, and kind in all his doings.|
|18||The LORD is near to all who call upon him, to all who call upon him in truth.|
ROMANS 8: 35-38
What will separate us from the love of Christ?
Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine,
or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?
No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly
through him who loved us.
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life,
nor angels, nor principalities,
nor present things, nor future things,
nor powers, nor height, nor depth,
nor any other creature will be able to separate us
from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The Holy Father Benedict XVI received in audience this afternoon, in the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo
Delegation of the City of Traunstein.
The Holy Father Benedict XVI has accepted the resignation of the office of auxiliary of Saint-Jérôme (Canada), presented by Bishop Donald Lapointe, according to the canons 411 and 401 § 1 of the Code of Canon Law.
Saturday, July 30, 2011
A women's movement has organized an interfaith conference on the role and value of women. A poll reveals that 88% of women in the city have experienced some form of violence. A plan to ensure greater social and religious commitment. The archbishop of Kirkuk stresses the importance of women in Christian history: "equal value to the role of males and females."
Kirkuk (AsiaNews) - The Free Union of Women (Christian) of Bethnahrain (Mesopotamia) in Kirkuk, northern Iraq, today held a conference focusing on "violence against women" in the great hall of the Chaldean cathedral. The event was attended by more than 100 Christian and Muslim women, along with personalities from the government and civil society. Ahead of the event, the Union carried out a survey on a thousand women in the city of Kirkuk to understand the incidence of phenomena of violence suffered in the past. The vast majority of respondents (88% of the total) said they had suffered some form - more or less serious - of violence and the tendency of continuous growth clearly emerged.
The event organized by the women's movement was also attended by the archbishop of Kirkuk, Msgr. Louis Sako, who presented the Christian point of view regarding women. "Christianity - said the prelate - never believes that women are inferior to men or have an element of secondary importance." In the hierarchy, according to the theological concept of creation, women have an equal importance in terms of human value and capability. " Archbishop Sako mentioned the Bible, where it is written that God created man in His own image and likeness "(Gen 1 - 27).
Men and women were created in the image of God, continued the archbishop of Kirkuk, and the same concept is echoed in the New Testament, where "the new creation of glory to glory continues " (1 Corinthians 11-11). Although able to create higher or lower beings, in the Christian vision, God created humankind - male and female - and they have "equal value and equal dignity in all. They are complementary partners in creation and salvation brought by Christ ... One needs the other, they complement and influence each other. "
In the Gospel no difference is made between men and women, explained Msgr. Sako, because both are derived "from the essence of God the Father." In God there is no distinction of sex, nor in favour of women, nor for the benefit of man. Therefore, the alleged inferiority of women "is not from God the Creator" and also Christ with Mary Magdalene, the Samaritan woman and the adulteress had a sense of compassion, to the point of exclaiming, "Who among you is without sin cast the first stone" (John 8: 3-6). Jesus Christ treated women as "a human being capable of love, understanding, working and thinking, of collaborating, sharing and communicating. His relationship - says the archbishop - is an example for us all. "
In his intervention, the prelate recalled Pope John Paul II, who - in the Apostolic Exhortation "A New Hope for Lebanon" in 1997 - clearly states that women deserve special attention to ensure their rights in various sectors of social and national life and that the Church, in its anthropological doctrine and education, stresses the equality of rights between men and women, because "such equality is because every human being is created in the image of God" (76-77).
Thus in light of the Christian vision, women should enjoy equal rights in political, social, economic and educational spheres: they must, reaffirms the prelate, have "equal dignity without discrimination" and he points the finger at "a patriarchal system and erroneous obtuseness of customs and traditions in society ", giving rise to the phenomena of violence against women, because it classifies them as" inferior "and intensifies discrimination and harassment.
At the conclusion of the conference some key points to enhance the work of women were listed. These include the formation of the personality of the woman, both from within and to enhance self- belief and self-confidence. All kind of discrimination must be rejected and the campaign for justice, peace and unity of creation embraced. This requires continuous learning through reading, study and analysis, with conviction and not blind obedience. Finally, the active presence of women, who must have a decision making role at the level of faith, both in the churches and mosques, to promote respect for the divine plan and condemn all violence.
Fides telephoned Suzanna Tkalec, of Catholic Relief Services (CRS), who assists His Exc. Mgr. Giorgio Bertin, Bishop of Djibouti and Apostolic Administrator of Mogadishu, as president of Caritas Somalia, to handle the emergency of the Somali refugees (see Fides 26/7/2011).
"We are working in Dadaab, refugee camp in Kenya which is situated 80 km from the border with Somalia", says Ms. Tkalec to Fides. " On average 2,500 people arrive at this camp every day, 80% are mothers with young children". "Instead of a single refugee camp in Dadaab there are many camps gathered" says the head of the CRS. "These facilities provide, health care, water and food"
As for Somalia, Mrs. Tkalec recalls that "for security reasons the decision not to publicize the activities of humanitarian organizations operating in Somalia was made". "What we can say is that the various Caritas send aid to Somalia through some local partners".
The drought also affects the people of Kenya and Ethiopia. "In Kenya, says the head of different national Caritas-CRS has been working with the diocese and the local Caritas in assistance projects for years. These organizations immediately started with their local partners, programs to tackle the drought emergency, primarily to provide food and water "(L.M.)
CNA REPORT: The Archbishop of Leon, Mexico is calling on Catholics to dress modestly at Mass.
“If you have any respect for this place (a church), dress appropriately,” Archbishop Jose Guadalupe Martin Rabago told reporters after Mass on July 24.
Criticism of the archbishop’s comments came after local newspapers featured photos of posters at some parishes in Leon that said, “Respect God’s house. Don’t come dressed like this.” The posters said women should not come to church dressed in miniskirts, sleeveless shirts, or low-cut blouses.
According to the newspaper Correo, the archbishop said women ought to know what they should wear and when.
“They know that for a wedding or a quinceanera they should dress one way, and for a trip to the beach they should dress another.”
The archbishop also said men need to dress appropriately at Mass as well. “Some men show up at church dressed in way that is undignified, wearing shorts or sandals. The place they are in requires something else,” he said.
Archbishop Martin Rabago said the media should not focus exclusively on what the Catholic Church says about how people should dress, as many evangelical churches require their congregations to come to church in a suit and tie.
He dismissed charges that his comments were misogynistic.
“This is not a misogynist attitude of any sort. I am simply asking for the dignity and decorum that this place calls for, that is all.”
St. Peter Chrysologus
Feast: July 30
Born at Imola, 406; died there, 450. His biography, first written by Agnellus (Liber pontificalis ecclesiæ Ravennatis) in the ninth century, gives but scanty information about him. He was baptised, educated, and ordained deacon by Cornelius, Bishop of Imola, and was elevated to the Bishopric of Ravenna in 433. There are indications that Ravenna held the rank of metropolitan before this time. His piety and zeal won for him universal admiration, and his oratory merited for him the name Chrysologus. He shared the confidence of Leo the Great and enjoyed the patronage of the Empress Galla Placidia. After his condemnation by the Synod of Constantinople (448), the Monophysite Eutyches endeavoured to win the support of Peter, but without success.
A collection of his homilies, numbering 176, was made by Felix, Bishop of Ravenna (707-17). Some are interpolations, and several other homilies known to be written by the saint are included in other collections under different names. They are in a great measure explanatory of Biblical texts and are brief and concise. He has explained beautifully the mystery of the Incarnation, the heresies of Arius and Eutyches, and the Apostles' Creed, and he dedicated a series of homilies to the Blessed Virgin and St. John the Baptist. His works were first edited by Agapitus Vicentinus (Bologna, 1534), and later by D. Mita (Bolonga, 1634), and S. Pauli (Venice, 1775) — the latter collection having been reprinted in P.L., LII. Fr. Liverani ("Spicilegium Liberianum"), Florence, 1863, 125 seq.) edited nine new homilies and published from manuscripts in Italian libraries different readings of several other sermons. Several homilies were translated into German by M. Held (Kempten, 1874).
|Matthew 14: 1 - 12|
|1||At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the fame of Jesus;|
|2||and he said to his servants, "This is John the Baptist, he has been raised from the dead; that is why these powers are at work in him."|
|3||For Herod had seized John and bound him and put him in prison, for the sake of Hero'di-as, his brother Philip's wife;|
|4||because John said to him, "It is not lawful for you to have her."|
|5||And though he wanted to put him to death, he feared the people, because they held him to be a prophet.|
|6||But when Herod's birthday came, the daughter of Hero'di-as danced before the company, and pleased Herod,|
|7||so that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she might ask.|
|8||Prompted by her mother, she said, "Give me the head of John the Baptist here on a platter."|
|9||And the king was sorry; but because of his oaths and his guests he commanded it to be given;|
|10||he sent and had John beheaded in the prison,|
|11||and his head was brought on a platter and given to the girl, and she brought it to her mother.|
|12||And his disciples came and took the body and buried it; and they went and told Jesus.|
Friday, July 29, 2011
BENEDICT XVI'S PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR AUGUST
VATICAN CITY, 29 JUL 2011 (VIS) - Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for August is: "That World Youth Day in Madrid may encourage young people throughout the world to have their lives rooted and built up in Christ".
His mission intention is: "That Western Christians may be open to the action of the Holy Spirit and rediscover the freshness and enthusiasm of their faith". (IMAGE SOURCE: RADIO VATICANA)
POPE DONATES SIGNATURE FOR AFRICA
Funeral arrangements are pending.
Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, said Archbishop Sambi was a friend of the United States.
“As the personal representative of the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Sambi enjoyed the highest respect and deepest affection of the bishops of the United States and of our Catholic people,” Archbishop Dolan said in a July 28 statement.
Archbishop Sambi was appointed U.S. nuncio, or ambassador, in December 2005 by Pope Benedict XVI. Prior to the U.S. appointment, Pope John Paul II had named him nuncio to Israel and Cyprus and apostolic delegate in Jerusalem and Palestine in 1998. The appointment made him only the second Vatican ambassador to Israel, after the Vatican and Israel established diplomatic relations in 1994.
Archbishop Sambi was a native of central Italy and was ordained a priest in 1964. He was named an archbishop and nuncio to Burundi in 1985, a position he held for six years until being named nuncio to Indonesia.
During Pope Benedict’s April 2008 visit to the United States, Archbishop Sambi accompanied the pope and hosted him at the nunciature, where the pope held a historic private meeting with five victims of clergy sexual abuse.
Before the pope’s arrival, the archbishop said Pope Benedict was coming to “strengthen the faith, the hope and love of the Catholic Church in the United States,” adding that he hoped the pope’s visit would “bring a new wind of Pentecost … a new springtime” to the U.S. church.
Archbishop Sambi recognized the global role of the United States and the U.S. church and told the bishops in 2006 an anecdote from his time as Vatican representative to Indonesia. He recalled a Christmas he spent in a remote village in Indonesia where in street shops, he said, “I found Coca-Cola and Marlboros.”
“I think the United States and the church of the United States has something more to bring to the world than Marlboros and Coca-Cola,” he told the bishops.
Shortly after being named U.S. nuncio, Archbishop Sambi told Catholic News Service, the official news service of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, of the reach of the church in the United States.
“I travel a lot throughout the world. It is difficult to find a part of the world where the charity of U.S. Catholics did not reach the poor or sick people,” he said.
Archbishop Sambi received many honors, including an honorary doctorate in public and ecclesial service, May 8, from Regis University in Denver. In 2009, he received the Living Stones Solidarity Award, which honors those who have made “a sustained and extraordinary effort to love, support and stand in solidarity with the Christians in the Holy Land.” It is bestowed by the Holy Land Christian Ecumenical Foundation.
Last September he was the principal celebrant of a Mass marking the 13th anniversary of the death of Blessed Teresa of Kolkata, which coincided with the U.S. Postal Service’s issuance of a stamp bearing her likeness.
“This stamp looks almost like a holy card. I pray it may serve in some small way as a reminder of Mother Teresa,” Archbishop Sambi said. “May Jesus stamp upon our hearts the same spirit as Mother’s to love God, the church and the poorest of the poor more than ourselves.”
At a 10th anniversary observance in 2009 of the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification signed by Catholics and Lutherans, Archbishop Sambi told a Washington audience that today’s disciples of Jesus, like the first disciples, should be recognized by how they love each other and, guided by Jesus, they should walk together in a spirit of unity, mutual respect and brotherhood.
“Each act of unity is a profession of faith in the Lord Jesus,” said the archbishop.
At the 2007 convention of the National Catholic Educational Association, he called teachers “the greatest artists of the world … because you sculpt the best of what you are, not in a piece of marble but in human beings who are the glory of God.”
“Each of us has forgotten a lot of what we were told in school,” he added, “but a lot of what’s inside is from the example of teachers.”
Archbishop Sambi had not yet been appointed to the U.S. until when Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005, but a year after the storm, he took what locals call a “misery tour” of New Orleans. It was only then, he said, he realized the extent of the damage. “You cannot measure the extent of it until you come on the spot,” he said.
"Bombings are being intensified, I do not know why. Maybe some decision from Tripoli is expected, but I do not think the leader will surrender so easily. Gaddafi still seems to be strong and I do not think the bombs will make him give in", said Mgr. Martinelli.
Meanwhile the circumstances of Abdel Fattah Younes’ death, the chief of staff of the Libyan insurgents, killed in an ambush yesterday, by a group apparently sent from Tripoli, still remain unclear. Younes, former Interior Minister of Gaddafi’s regime, had sided with the rebels in Benghazi, taking over the command of military operations of the insurgents. His leadership, however, was disputed between Hifter Khalifa, another military leader of the insurgents. (L.M.)