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YOU ARE NOT AND YOU WILL NOT BE ALONE! POPE TELLS EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS IN EMILIA ROMAGNA
Vatican City, 26 June 2012 (VIS) - At 9 a.m. today the Holy Father departed by helicopter from the Vatican to fly to the Italian region of Emilia Romagna which, beginning on 20 May, has been affected by a series of earthquakes that have left many dead and hundreds of injured. The tremors have forced thousands of people to abandon their homes, destroyed historic buildings and seriously damaged the infrastructure and economy of the entire area.
The Pope's helicopter landed at 10.30 a.m. at the sports ground of San Marino di Carpi where he was welcomed by Bishop Francesco Cavina of Carpi and by Franco Gabrielli, head of the Italian Civil Protection Department. The Pontiff then boarded a minibus to travel to Rovereto di Novi where he made a brief visit to the church of St. Catherine of Alexandria which partially collapsed during the earthquake killing the pastor Fr. Ivan Martini. Subsequently the Holy Father boarded a Jeep from which he greeted the faithful while being driven to the central square of Rovereto di Novi where, in the presence of the archbishops and bishops of the affected areas (Bologna, Carpi, Modena, Mantua, Ferrara and Reggio Emilia) he delivered his address.
Ample extracts from the Holy Father's words are given below:
"Ever since the beginning of the earthquake which affected you I have been close to you with my prayers and concern. But when I saw that the trial had become more arduous, I felt the impelling need to come among you in person, and I thank the Lord for having enabled me to do so. Thus I greet all of you who are gathered here, as with my mind and heart I embrace all the villages and all the people affected by the earthquake, especially the families and communities mourning their dead. May the Lord welcome them into His peace".
"I was aware that, apart from suffering the material consequences, your spirits were also being sorely tried by the continuation of the seismic activity, including even strong tremors, and by the loss of certain symbolic buildings in your towns and villages, in particular many churches. Here in Rovereto di Novi in the collapse of a church - which I have just visited - Fr. Ivan Martini lost his life. Paying homage to his memory, I address a special greeting to you, dear priests, and to all confreres who, as has happened at other difficult moments in the history of these lands, are showing their generous love for the people of God.
"As you all know, we priests (as well as religious and no small number of lay people) daily pray the 'Breviary' which contains the Liturgy of the Hours, the prayer of the Church which marks the hours of the day. We pray the Psalms in an order which is the same for the entire Catholic Church. Why am I telling you this? Because in recent days I came across this expression in Psalm 46: 'God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble'".
"These words seem to contrast with the fear we inevitably feel following an experience such as the one you have just been through; that is an immediate reaction, which can become more profound if the phenomenon is prolonged. However, the Psalm does not in fact refer to that kind of fear; and the confidence it expresses in not that of supermen untouched by normal feelings. The confidence expressed is that of the faith. Yes we may feel fear and anguish - even Jesus did - but above all is the certainty that God is with us. ... His Love is as solid as a rock. We see this Love in the crucified Christ; at one and the same time a sign of suffering and of love. This is the revelation of God Love, Who remained united to us even unto extreme abasement.
"On this rock, with this firm hope, we can build, we can rebuild. Italy was rebuilt on the postwar ruins, and not just material ruins, thanks also to help received, but above all thanks to the faith of so many people animated by a spirit of genuine solidarity, by the will to give a future to their families, a future of freedom and peace. You are a people whom all Italians respect for your humanity and sociability, for hard work and cordiality. These qualities have been dealt a harsh blow by the current situation, but this must not and cannot affect your identity as a people, your history and your culture. Remain faithful to your vocation as a fraternal and united people, and face everything with patience and determination, rejecting the temptations which are unfortunately always associated with such moments of weakness and need.
"The situation you are going through has highlighted an aspect which I hope will remain at the forefront of your minds: You are not and you will not be alone! Over these days, amidst so much destruction and pain, you have seen and felt how numerous people have expressed closeness, solidarity and affection through so many signs and concrete forms of assistance. My presence among you is intended to be another such sign of love and hope. Looking at you lands I have been profoundly moved by the sight of so many wounds, but I have also seen many hands extended to cure those wounds with you. I have seen that life restarts with force and courage, and that is the most beautiful and lustrous sign of all.
"From here I wish to launch an appeal to the institutions, and to all citizens, despite the difficulties of the current time, to be like the Good Samaritan of the Bible who did not walk by indifferent to the one in need, but lovingly tended him, helped him, remained at his side and took full responsibility for the other's needs. The Church is close and will remain close with her prayers and with the concrete help of her organisations, especially Caritas, which will also undertake to rebuild the social fibre of parish communities".
Having completed his address, the Holy Father greeted the civil and religious authorities present. He then returned to the sports ground of San Marino di Carpi where his helicopter took off at midday, arriving in Rome shortly after 1.30 p.m.
NOTE FROM THE CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH
Vatican City, 26 June 2012 (VIS) - Given below is the text of an English-language note issued today by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Fatih concerning the appointment of Archbishop Augustine Di Noia as vice president of the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei":
"Pope Benedict XVI has named Archbishop Augustine Di Noia, O.P., to the post of vice president of the Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei'. The appointment of a high-ranking prelate to this position is a sign of the Holy Father’s pastoral solicitude for traditionalist Catholics in communion with the Holy See and his strong desire for the reconciliation of those traditionalist communities not in union with the See of Peter. The president of the commission is the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal William J. Levada.
"The Pontifical Commission 'Ecclesia Dei' was established in 1988 by Blessed John Paul II to facilitate 'full ecclesial communion of priests, seminarians, religious communities or individuals until now linked in various ways to the Fraternity founded by Archbishop Lefebvre' and to promote the pastoral care of the faithful attached to the ancient Latin liturgical tradition of the Catholic Church. In 2009, the Pontifical Commission was structurally linked to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to address the doctrinal issues in the ongoing dialogue between the Holy See and the Priestly Fraternity of St. Pius X.
"As a respected Dominican theologian, Archbishop Di Noia has devoted much attention to these doctrinal issues, as well as to the priority of the hermeneutic of continuity and reform in the right interpretation of Vatican Council II - a critically important area in the dialogue between the Holy See and the Priestly Fraternity. Under the guidance of Cardinal Levada, with the assistance of Msgr. Guido Pozzo, secretary of the Pontifical Commission, this dialogue has been ongoing over the past three years.
"Previously, Archbishop Di Noia served as secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments where, together with the prefect, Cardinal Antonio Canizares, he oversaw the reorganisation of the dicastery and the preparation of a new 'Regolamento' following the directions of Pope Benedict’s 'motu proprio' of 30 August 2011, 'Quaerit Semper'. Archbishop Di Noia’s experience and continued association with the Congregation for Divine Worship will facilitate the development of certain desired liturgical provisions in the celebration of the 1962 'Missale Romanum'.
"In addition, the broad respect that Archbishop Di Noia enjoys in the Jewish community will help in addressing some issues that have arisen in the area of Catholic-Jewish relations as the journey towards the reconciliation of traditionalist communities has progressed".
OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS
Vatican City, 26 June 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father:
- Accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Merlo-Moreno, Argentina, presented by Bishop Fernando Maria Bargallo, in accordance with canon 401 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law, appointing Bishop Alcides Jorge Pedro Casaretto, emeritus of the diocese of San Isidro, Argentina, as apostolic administrator "ad nutum Sanctae Sedis" of Merlo-Moreno.
- Appointed Archbishop Jean-Louis Brugues O.P., secretary of the Congregation for Catholic Education, as archivist and librarian of Holy Roman Church.
- Appointed Bishop Vincenzo Paglia of Terni-Narni-Amelia, Italy, as president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, at the same time elevating him to the dignity of archbishop. He succeeds Cardinal Ennio Antonelli, whose resignation from the same office the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
- Appointed Archbishop Joseph Augustine Di Noia, O.P., secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, as vice president of the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei".
- Appointed Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds, England, as secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, at the same time elevating him to the dignity of archbishop.
- Appointed Bishop Protase Rugambwa of Kigoma, Tanzania, as adjunct secretary of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples and president of the Pontifical Missionary Works, at the same time elevating him to the dignity of archbishop. He succeeds Archbishop Piergiuseppe Vacchelli, whose resignation from the same offices the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
- Appointed Msgr. Krzysztof Jozef Nykiel, official of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, as regent of the Apostolic Penitentiary. The bishop-elect was born in Osjakow, Poland in 1965 and ordained a priest in 1990. He studied in Rome and has also served as an official of the Pontifical Council for Health Pastoral Care. He succeeds Bishop Gianfranco Girotti, O.F.M. Conv., whose resignation from the same office the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
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