Thursday, August 30, 2012


St. Raymond Nonnatus
Feast: August 31

Information: Feast Day: August 31

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


Vatican Radio REPORT The ecumenical journey is an issue of “prime importance” for Pope Benedict XVI as is the need for reform in continuity and the correct interpretation of the Second Vatican Council, the great ecumenical gathering which this year turns 50. Not by chance then, that Pope Benedict has decided to dedicated this years "Ratzinger Schülerkreis", or Ratzinger Summer School to these very themes.
This “Ratzinger Summer School” first began meeting over 30 years ago, when then Professor Joseph Ratzinger left the University of Regensburg to head the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Since then each year he has gathered together his former theology students and invited expert theologians to take part in the 3 day, closed-door seminars, on topics as varied as new evangelization and evolution.

On Friday, the group will begin discussions on the relations between Catholics, Lutherans and Anglicans, with reference to the book entitled "Harvesting the fruits", published in 2009 by Cardinal Walter Kasper, President-emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

Taking part in the school, held at the Foccolari movement’s Mariopolis centre in Catselgandolfo, is Cardinal Archbishop of Vienna Christoph Schönborn. He spoke to Vatican Radio’s Gudrun Sailer about the theme and participants at this years Summer school :

“There will be the Lutheran Bishop Emeritus Ulrich Wilkens, a famous exegete, who will discuss the development of ecumenism between Catholics and Lutherans. The theme of the Anglicans will be addressed by Bishop Charles Morereau, the new bishop of Geneva, Lausanne and Fribourg, who is a specialist on this topic, Cardinal Koch, President of the Council for Christian Unity will also be present... The fact that the Holy Father has chosen this theme for the meeting this year is a sign that the ecumenical question is of primary importance for him. I think this is already a first essential concept, within the context of the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council, it is a strong sign that the Holy Father insists on the importance of these meetings between separated Christians.
In five years time, there will be celebrations to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Will this be a backdrop to your discussions in anyway?
“ Inevitably I think that it will be on the horizon from the Lutheran and Anglican viewpoint, because it is a consequence of the Reformation. With the Holy Father, we expect a dialogue in truth and charity: In the truth that does not conceal the drama of division among Christians in Europe and, as a consequence, all over the world, but also the great issue of what is the reform of the Church, a theme of utmost importance to the Holy Father. We only have to think of all that he has said and taught about reform in continuity, as a model of Catholic reform. Of course, as part of the jubilee of the Reformation there will be a lot of talk about what constitutes real reform, which we are in need of, even today”.
What form do the discussions held within this "circle" take?
It is an academic circle, and this means that what counts are the arguments. Of course there is the question of friendships that have been built up after so many years, we have met for over 30 years, every year, and now we are almost at the point of retirement! The Holy Father is the youngest always has been, at least that has been my experience over the years. The Pope first and foremost is a man of reflection, what matters is the subject and the search for truth. So, if we could not discuss matters openly, we would not be a circle of students with their professor! I think that this climate of searching for the truth - the historical, and philosophical and theological truth - has remained unchanged, but there is also a hint of friendship. What strikes us is how the Holy Father always knows his pupils, he always asks about their family, children, and when there is suffering in a family he knows about it, he cares deeply ... This very human aspect - paternal, fraternal - is very and visibly present. I think that this is partly one of the reasons why this "circle" has been kept on going, from 1977 until now ...
At the beginning of the gathering, the Holy Father usually gives a brief summary of what has happened in the Church and the Vatican in the months since your last meeting. What arguments are you personally hoping to hear about this time?
“It has always been a very important part of the meeting, and it was 30 years ago ... Before he would talk about his experience at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and we would all eagerly await this panoramic tour and take notes ... This year, what will the Holy Father focus on? We only have to think of the big issues over the past year ... Its really enlightening to see not so much which issue the Holy Father focuses on, rather, how he focuses on it: The light of wisdom and insight that he reveals as he speaks of the great events of the past year ...



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HURRICANE ISAAC has affected over 800000 over 5 states. This hurricane came down on Tuesday, August 28, 2012 as a Category 1 and has had winds at 60 mph.

Thousands are stranded by flooding. The National Guard is involved in transporting thousands from their homes to shelters. Mississippi, Louisiana and New Orleans are among the worst damages. Looting is also a problem as flooding damages stores. In Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas and Arkansas there are over 800000 without power. Due to the last fatal hurricane Katrina, where 1,800 died, new levees were built in New Orleans that have protected many in this new storm.


MOMBASA, August 28, 2012 (CISA) -The National Council of Churches of Kenya has strongly condemned the atrocious and unwarranted attacks on five churches and its office at Mombasa yesterday August 27 during which innocent worshipers were injured. Vandalism and looting by demonstrators resulted in extensive damage and immense loss of property at the Jesus Celebration Center Buxton, NCCK Office, PAG Church Ziwani, Mombasa Pentecostal Church, Seventh Day Adventist Church Ziwani and Salvation Army Church Majengo.
“We have completely failed to understand the logic that made the demonstrators associate the heinous murder of Aboud Rogo with the churches and other properties belonging to innocent Kenyans. The clear message is that these attacks are indicative of a deep seated hatred towards the churches whose cause is inexplicable” said NCCK in a statement issued by Rev Canon Peter Karanja, its General Secretary
In addition, NCCK said that it had been very perturbed that in the recent days, scores of Kenyans in Tana River, Mandera, Wajir and now Mombasa have lost their lives in the hands of politically motivated criminals and that it is only after the events that the presence of security personnel is witnessed.
“We are concerned that the skirmishes and the lawlessness that is building up is a prelude to greater violence nearer the elections as has happened in the past. What we cannot fathom is how a government that is charged with the responsibility of protecting its citizens perpetually plays catch up with the criminals and is clearly unable to protect its own people.
“We state here that the killers of Aboud Rogo as well as the instigators of violence against the churches, as well as those behind the clashes in Tana River, Mandera and Wajir must be brought to book. This calls for speedy investigations and decisive action by the security agencies. Failure to do this will be terror against justice. We further call upon the leaders of the Muslim community to condemn the attacks and restrain their followers. As Kenyans, we must not allow ourselves to sink into sectarian violence,” concluded Rev Karanja.
Meanwhile Mr Aeneas C Chuma UN Humanitarian Coordinator has issued a statement saying that… “I am deeply concerned by the inter-communal violence taking place in Tana River and Mandera counties, which has resulted in dozens of deaths, including a large number of children and women. These communities are today living in fear of retaliation, and the humanitarian consequences are severe. While the violence appears on the surface to be a long-standing conflict driven by competition for resources such as water and pasture, there is evidence to suggest the killings have a political component related to redrawing of political boundaries and next year’s general elections. I caution those who seek to manipulate innocent populations for political gain to give serious consideration to the consequences of their actions.”
He called upon all parties to resolve their differences through peaceful means, and urged the Government of Kenya to reinforce existing mechanisms and measures to prevent any further bloodshed.


by Xin Yage
Attended by over 300 young people from parishes, schools and movements throughout the island. The vigil of reconciliation and Eucharist key points. Youth Day has been celebrated since 2004, since 2010 there is also a page on Facebook to meet and mission on the web and in life.

Taipei (AsiaNews) - Today in Taiwan the school year began for all students. Young Catholics will greet classmates and share with them the experience that they have just had during the seventh national Youth Day, held in Chayi August 23 to 27.

This year's theme was "Rejoice in the Lord always!" (你们 在 主 内 应当 常常喜乐), a phrase taken from the letter to the Philippians, chapter four. In the five-day meeting, more than 300 young people from parishes, schools and Catholic movements throughout Taiwan were able to enrich their faith through sharing. The bishops of the island were present along with many priests and religious. The vigil of reconciliation during the late evening and the rich and emotional final Eucharistic celebration were the high points of the meeting, giving all present a strong sense of hope and the desire to continue to build a community of joyful faith around the message of Jesus

The Church of Taiwan is also preparing to celebrate this weekend, on 1 September in Kaohsiung, the funeral of Cardinal Shan Kuo-hsi, and the young faithful of the island have decided to pick up the baton from where he left off.

The first national Youth Day in Taiwan was organized in 2004 by a group of young Catholics who had participated in the previous World Youth Days and asked the bishops for something similar for Taiwan. Since then, the national Youth Day is organized in turn by one of the seven dioceses of the island.

Since 2004 seven days have been held, with different themes: "Walk toward God, walking towards love" (向 主 走, 向 爱 走 - 2004, Nantou), "Love one another as I have loved you" (就 如 我 爱 了 你们, 你们 应当 彼此 相爱 - 2007, Tainan), "Receive the power of the Spirit to be my witnesses" (领受 圣神 的 德 能, 为主作证 - 2008, Taipei), "Youth, stand up! Be the hope of Taiwan: My thoughts, my words, my walk with Christ "(年轻人 ‧ 站 出来 ‧ 让 台湾 ‧ 有 希望 - 我 思, 我 言, 我 行 跟 耶稣 - 2009, Taichung ), "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" (善 师, 为 承受 永生, 我 该做什么? - 2010, Hsinchu), "Love and communion renew all things in Christ" (爱 ‧ 融合 - 在 耶稣基督 内 重建 一切 - 2011, Kaohsiung).

Since Hsinchu 2010, the organization has also provided hospitality to participants in among local families, allowing a more personal and engaging experience in the annual event.

During the opening Mass of 2010, the Vatican Nuncio to Taiwain, Msgr. Paul Russell, proclaimed: "Some say that the church in Taiwan is old, but I tell you, seeing so many of you, that the church of Taiwan is really young. " His words were met with a standing ovation. And since then, the Facebook page entitled "台湾 青年 日 Taiwan Youth Day" has overflowed with comments and shares, with references to other blogs of young Catholics in Taiwan in a network that helps them to keep in touch and be informed of new initiatives and enrich their mutual friendship.




ARCHDIOCESE OF MELBOURNE REPORT: By Brenda HubberON Sunday, 26 August 2012, Archbishop Denis Hart, along with several of the migrant chaplains, celebrated the Annual Mass of All Nations at St Patrick’s Cathedral, Melbourne.
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The Mass was preceded by a beautiful Rosary procession involving many of the migrant communities present in the Archdiocese of Melbourne. Each ‘Hail Mary’ was recited, and the ‘Lourdes Hymn’ (at the end of each decade) was sung, in a different language.

This year, the theme was ‘Contemplating the Face of Christ’ and His face was present in its many manifestations – Chinese, Croatian, Filipino, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Samoan, Slovenian, Spanish, Sudanese, Tongan, Vietnamese.

The singing was ably led by Mr Joe Madalle and the Pangkat Pinoy Filipino Choir, with Adolfusas Sekawago from the Indonesian community leading the Responsorial Psalm and the Gospel Acclamation.

A representative from the Samoan and Portuguese communities read the reading, and Fr Delmar Silva, the Episcopal Vicar for Migrants & Refugees read the Gospel. The Archbishop’s homily highlighted that the migrant communities are a vital and active part of the Catholic Church in Melbourne.

The Prayers of the Faithful were prayed in Slovenian, Croatian, Tongan, Polish and Vietnamese. Even the seven seminarians, who were the altar servers at the Mass, came from the four corners of the world.

Executive Officer of the Melbourne Catholic Migrant & Refugee Office, Brenda Hubber said, “It was a beautiful expression of the Universal Church and I always feel extremely privileged to be a witness to such a colourful and faith-filled event.”

Those who participated in the Mass gathered for a barbeque with refreshments afterwards, which encouraged people to stay and mingle. The volunteers did a fantastic job of ensuring that every one of the more than 500 people in attendance had a bite to eat.