Saturday, February 4, 2012


Mark 6: 30 - 34

30 The apostles returned to Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught.
31 And he said to them, "Come away by yourselves to a lonely place, and rest a while." For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.
32 And they went away in the boat to a lonely place by themselves.
33 Now many saw them going, and knew them, and they ran there on foot from all the towns, and got there ahead of them.
34 As he went ashore he saw a great throng, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things.



The Pope has accepted the resignation to the pastoral governance of the Diocese of Neiva (Colombia), presented by H.e. Mons. Ramón Darío Molina Jaramillo, O.F.M., according to can. 401 § 1 of the code of Canon law

Pope Benedict XVI has named Bishop of Neiva (Colombia) on Froilán Tiberius Casas Ortiz, the clergy of the Archdiocese of Tunja (Colombia), Rector of the Archdiocesan Seminary. Froilán Tiberius Casas Ortiz

The Froilán Tiberius Casas Ortiz was born in Chiquinquirá, May 21, 1948. He studied in the priestly Seminary of the Archdiocese of Tunja. He obtained a Licentiate in dogmatic theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and at the University "Santo Tomás" in Bogotá, he obtained a Licentiate in philosophy and religious studies and specialization in university teaching.

Was ordained to the priesthood on December 9, 1972, for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Tunja.

After ordination he worked the following pastoral appointments: Professor at the major Seminary of Tunja (1979-1999); Chaplain of the SENA- Servicio Nacional de Aprendizaje (1981-1995); Parish of Santa Bárbara in Tunja (1986-1996); Parish of San Laureano in Tunja (1997-2002); Chaplain of the Foyers de Charité in Bucaramanga (2003-2008); Trainer of the major Seminary of Tunja (2009-2010); Vicar for religious in the Archdiocese of Tunja (2010) and Rector of the major Seminary of Tunja (2011).



Fr Peter Anthony Fulton PE died at the Austin Hospital this morning,
3 February 2012.

Fr Fulton served the Church for over 41 years. He was Assistant Priest in the Parishes of Healesville, Dandenong, South Caulfield, Doncaster and Blackburn. Fr Fulton served in the Melbourne Overseas Mission in New Guinea during which time he survived a plane crash which left him a paraplegic.
Later, he became a member of staff at Corpus Christi College, Clayton. He was appointed Parish Priest of Mount Eliza, where he remained until his resignation due to ill health. Fr Fulton was appointed Pastor Emeritus in 2010.

The Vicar General, Bishop Les Tomlinson, said, "Those who knew Peter have a lasting impression of his courage, perseverance and determination is coping with his disabilities and the consequential complications to his health over many years".

The tentative funeral arrangements are Pontifical Funeral Mass at St Thomas' Church, Greensborough North on Wednesday, 8th February, 2012 at 12 noon. Confirmation of these arrangements will be published in the newspapers' funeral notices.


JEDDAH, February, 03, 2012 (CISA) -Thirty five Ethiopian Christians are awaiting deportation from Saudi Arabia for “illicit mingling,” after police arrested them when they raided a private prayer gathering in Jeddah in mid-December, 2011, Human Rights Watch has said.
Of those arrested, 29 were women. They were subjected to arbitrary body searches in custody, three of the Ethiopians told Human Rights Watch.
The Ethiopians gathered to pray together on December 15, during the advent of Christmas, in the private home of one of the Ethiopians, when police burst in and arrested them, three jailed members of the group, two women and one man, told Human Rights Watch.
“While King Abdullah sets up an international interfaith dialogue center, his police are trampling on the rights of believers of others faiths,” said Christoph Wilcke, senior Middle East researcher for Human Rights Watch. “The Saudi government needs to change its own intolerant ways before it can promote religious dialogue abroad.”
In October, Saudi Arabia, together with Austria and Spain, founded the King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue, located in Vienna, and funded by Saudi Arabia.
The Ethiopians, speaking via telephone from prison, said that about 10 days after being arrested, some in the group were taken to court, where they were forced to affix their fingerprints to a document without being allowed to read it.
Officials told the group that they were being charged with “illicit mingling” of unmarried persons of the opposite sex. Some of the Ethiopians have been living in the kingdom for 16 years, while others are newer arrivals.
Some of the women and men did not have valid residency papers, but all faced deportation, including those with valid papers, the jailed Ethiopian man said.
“Saudi authorities have broken their promises to respect other faiths,” Wilcke said. “Men and women of other faiths have nowhere to worship in Saudi Arabia if even their private homes are no longer safe.”
The Arab Charter of Human Rights, to which Saudi Arabia is a state party, guarantees “the freedom to manifest one’s religion or beliefs or to perform religious observances, either alone or in community with others,” and prohibits “arbitrary arrest.”
Human Rights Watch has called on the Saudi authorities to release the 35 Ethiopian men and women immediately if there is no evidence to charge them with offenses that are recognizably criminal under international norms.


CATHOLIC HERALD REPORT: The Manna Centre, located underneath what will be the tallest building in Europe, was founded by an Irish-born missionary Sister
By Dr Peter Doherty on Thursday, 2 February 2012
A client visits the clothes store at the Manna Centre (Photo: Tricia de Courcy Ling)
The Manna Centre nestles in the shades of the Shard, which when completed will be the tallest building in Europe, and the modern Guy’s Hospital, in an obscure cul de sac, writes Dr Peter Doherty.
The centre is a remarkable refuge and support for those sleeping in doorways in this part of Southwark. It was founded by Nannette Ffrench, an Irish-born Sister, who had recently returned from working as a nursing Sister in Africa when she witnessed the tragic conditions of the homeless sleeping rough in this area. Her latter years in Africa were spent as a surgical theatre Sister in a hospital in what was then Rhodesia. The fighting had become extremely fierce and the hospital and its theatre were in the thick of it as it was the only source of help for both sides.
When peace came Nannette had reached retirement age and, in accordance with the conventions of her order, she was recalled to the mother house. She was enabled to renounce her religious vows and, in her own words, regarding her future “it was now up to God”.
She came to London and was fortunate to be offered temporary accommodation in an old school by the Archdiocese of Southwark. She slept on a floor on a mattress for the first six months until she was able to sort herself out in her new life. By now she had become painfully aware of the misery and utter hopelessness of this neglected section of our society littering the streets in a wealthy city. She approached the late Bishop George Henderson for the use of a property and, when he asked what she would do with it, replied by saying she did not exactly know at the moment but “would open the doors and see who God let in”.
That is exactly what happened. The archdiocese handed over the keys of an unused nursery school at 6 Melior Street which has now been developed as the current centre of operations. An old car number plate was found on which was printed “Manna Centre” and nailed to the wall claiming the building for the homeless. The title was adopted from the gift of bread from a local Italian baker in the early days: truly manna from heaven.
Initially, pots of tea and a wash-up was all that could be offered, until Nannette’s powers of persuasion provided greater facilities.
The Centre now serves breakfast and lunch to over 200 people seven days a week. It also offers shower and loo facilities for both men and women every day of the week. A clothing service provided by parishes in the archdiocese offers services twice weekly and is operated by volunteers.
An advice service, with specialised Eastern European advisers, in addition to general advisers, helps movements from homelessness and poverty to a more stable housing and independent living. Altogether 1,657 clients accessed services in the past year.
Of the 330 seeking help with accommodation and who had access to benefits in Britain 56 per cent were placed in accommodation.
Getting medical treatment without a fixed address is a major problem. Nurse practitioners hold surgeries twice a week and when necessary are able to refer clients for further medical help. In addition there is access to osteopaths, a chiropodist, an optician and a dentist.
All this would not have been possible without the financial support of supporters and sponsors. Running costs have increased to £32,000 a month and so more publicity is vitally needed to maintain and improve its facilities.
Crucially, without the financial support of the archdiocese providing the premises none of this would have been possible. The future is going to be difficult as it is for the whole country facing austerity measures. But the magnificent team, which has been in place for many years, is confident that there is always hope on the horizon. The area around Melior Street and Borough High Street may not be as available to visitors, or volunteers, as that of the Passage in Westminster, but they are always welcome.
Nannette is still extremely active and in recent years founded another charity African Mission which, as its name implies, is active on the African scene.


ASIA NEWS REPORT: by Mathias Hariyadi
After three years of decline, a sharp increase in requests for admission to the seminaries. The St. Peter Canisius in Mertoyudan, run by Jesuits, is celebrating the 100 year with a record number of students. Most come from the archdiocese of Semarang.Bishop of Purwokerto: "huge number".

Jakarta (AsiaNews) - With over 250 students and seminarians in the new year, the number of candidates to the priesthood in Central Java has experienced a sharp growth, after three years of slow decline. The Indonesian Church is celebrating this u-turn, as confirmed rectors of seminaries and diocesan bishops. Father Gandhi Hartono SJ, professor and dean of the Minor Seminary of St. Peter Canisius, Mertoyudan in Magelang regency, reports that the Jesuit school is ready to welcome over 150 candidates from hundreds of scattered parishes in the Archdiocese of Semarang, in Diocese of Purwokerto and other areas of the province of Central Java. The same enthusiasm is apparent from the comments of the rector of the seminary, Fr. Ignatius Sumaryo SJ, who confirms that the greatest number of future seminarians comes from Semarang.

In June 2012 the Minor Seminary of St. Peter Canisius celebrates 100 years of life. An important goal for the institution, property of the Archdiocese of Semarang, but run by Jesuit priests along with the "natives" of the area. Many of the priests now active in Indonesia - including bishops, cardinals or consecrated - were once students at this facility.

In the island of Java there are three minor seminaries: Wacana Bhakti in South Jakarta, owned by the local archdiocese, St. Vincent de Paul in Garum, in East Java, belonging to the Diocese of Surabaya and the Yogyakarta Berthinianum postulate, run by the Missionaries of the Sacred Family.

Father Gandhi Hartono SJ says that 85 young seminarians in their 9th year and another twenty in their 12th year will join the Mertoyudan seminary, who have only two years of studies to aspire to the priesthood, with a specific focus of the study of Latin, English and Scripture . He confirms that the desire for the priesthood "is growing" an increase "of 15-20% on an annual basis." "This year we have 256 students – he adds - compared to 'only' 225, 198 and 166 of previous years."

The Indonesian Catholic community is celebrating the growth of vocations, as confirmed by the Bishop of Purwokerto Mgr. Julianus Sunarka SJ who exclaims: "the number is huge." The prelate added that his diocese holds the record of 76 priests - diocesan and from various congregations - while the religious sisters count 210, and men 33, the faithful finally, one million,.,-Catholic-Church-celebrates-a-boom-in-vocations-23883.html


AGENZIA FIDES REPORT: Santo Domingo (Agenzia Fides) - The young Dominicans call the attention of the authorities and leaders on the need to promote the political, cultural, economic and social development of the nation. The occasion was given by the second National Youth Congress on the theme "For a new political culture", held on 30 and 31 January in the Dominican Republic, sponsored by the Red Nacional de Acción Juvenil, which brought together young Dominicans from across the country. In the final document, according to information from Adital, young people denounce "the silence, impunity and complicity" of the rulers and the judiciary authority with regards to corruption in the country, in public and private sectors. This situation affects the social and economic development of the population.
Similarly young people reject "opportunistic and utilitarian practices" as well as actions conducted without public participation. During the event the necessary respect for the rights of women was remembered, affirming the rejection of all forms of violence and oppression against them. Similarly police crimes, insecurity, environmental pollution and the plundering of public assets were condemned. The Ministry of Youth, on the occasion of National Youth Day, celebrated on Tuesday, January 31, awarded the National Prize for Youth XVI to 16 young people, particularly worthy of mention for their contribution in various fields, including culture of peace, environmental conservation, health care, human rights (childhood and youth), social welfare, cultural development, rural leadership, religious leadership, political leadership, social services to community service. (SL) (Agenzia Fides 02/02/2012)


St. Joseph of Leonessa
Feast: February 4

Feast Day:February 4
8 January 1556 at Leonissa, Umbria, Italy
Died:Saturday 4 February 1612 at Umbria, Italy
Canonized:29 June 1746 by Pope Benedict XIV
In the world named Eufranio Desiderio, born in 1556 at Leonessa in Umbria; died 4 February, 1612. From his infancy he showed a remarkably religious bent of mind; he used to erect little altars and spend much time in prayer before them, and often he would gather his companions and induce them to pray with him. Whilst yet a boy he used to take the discipline on Fridays in company with the confraternity of St. Saviour. He was educated by his uncle, who had planned a suitable marriage for him, but in his sixteenth year he fell sick of a fever, and on his recovery, without consulting his relative, he joined the Capuchin reform of the Franciscan Order. He made his novitiate in the convent of the Carcerelle near Assisi. As a religious he was remarkable for his great abstinence. "Brother Ass", he would say to his body, "there is no need to feed thee as a noble horse would be fed: thou must be content to be a poor ass." In 1599, the year before his Jubilee year, he fasted the whole year by way of preparation for gaining the indulgence. In 1587 he was sent by the Superior General of his order to Constantinople to minister to the Christians held captive there. Arrived there he and his companions lodged in a derelict house of Benedictine monks. The poverty in which the friars lived attracted the attention of the Turks, who went in numbers to see the new missionaries. He was very solicitous in ministering to the captive Christians in the galleys. Every day he went into the city to preach, and he was at length thrown into prison and only released at the intervention of the Venetian agent. Urged on by zeal he at last sought to enter the palace to preach before the Sultan, but he was seized and condemned to death. For three days he hung on the gallows, held up by two hooks driven through his right hand and foot; then he was miraculously released by an angel. Returning to Italy, he took with him a Greek archbishop who had apostatized, and who was reconciled to the Church on their arrival in Rome. Joseph now took up the work of home missions in his native province, sometimes preaching six or seven times a day. In the Jubilee year of 1600 he preached the Lent at Orticoli, a town through which crowds of pilgrims passed on their way to Rome. Many of them being very poor, Joseph supplied them with food; he also washed their clothes and cut their hair. At Todi he cultivated with his own hands a garden, the produce of which was for the poor. His feast is kept on 4 February throughout the Franciscan Order. He was canonized by Benedict XIV.