Wednesday, October 10, 2012


Luke 11: 1 - 4
1 He was praying in a certain place, and when he ceased, one of his disciples said to him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples."
2 And he said to them, "When you pray, say: "Father, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come.
3 Give us each day our daily bread;
4 and forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive every one who is indebted to us; and lead us not into temptation."


Vatican City, 10 October 2012 (VIS) - "We have reached the eve of the day on which we will celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of Vatican Council II and the beginning of the Year of Faith", said Benedict XVI at the start of his catechesis during this morning's general audience in St. Peter's Square. "And it is about the great ecclesial event of the Council that I wish to speak", he explained.
"The documents of Vatican Council II are, even in our own time, a compass guiding the ship of the Church as she sails on the open seas, amidst tempests or peaceful waves, to reach her destination". Vatican II, in which Pope Benedict participated as a young professor of fundamental theology at the University of Bonn, was, he said, "a unique experience" during which "I was able to witness the living Church ... which places herself at the school of the Holy Spirit, the true driving force behind the Council. Rarely in history has it been possible, as it was then, to touch almost physically the universality of the Church at a moment of peak fulfilment of her mission to carry the Gospel into all ages and unto the ends of the earth".
In Church history Vatican II was preceded by many other Councils such as Nicea, Ephesus, Chalcedon and Trent. In general though, they met to define fundamental elements of the faith, and particularly to the correct errors endangering that faith. This was not the case with Vatican Council II, because at that time "there were no particular errors of the faith to correct and condemn, nor were there specific questions of doctrine and discipline to be clarified. ... The first question that arose during the preparation of this great event was how to begin, what task to give it. Blessed John XXIII in his opening address of 11 October fifty years ago gave some general guidelines: the faith had to speak with a 'renewed' and more incisive voice, because the world was changing rapidly, but it had to maintain its perennial message intact, without giving way or compromising.
"The Pope", Benedict XVI added, "wanted the Church to reflect upon her faith and upon the truths that guide her. But that serious and profound reflection ... had to be the starting point for a new relationship between the Church and the modern age, between Christianity and certain essential elements of modern thought, not in order to seek conformity, but to show our world, which tends to distance itself from God, the requirements of the Gospel in all its greatness and purity".
"The age in which we live continues to be marked by forgetfulness and deafness towards God. I believe, then, that we must learn the simplest and most fundamental lesson of the Council: that the essence of Christianity consists in faith in God, ... and in the individual and community encounter with Christ Who guides our lives. ... The important thing today, as was the desire of the Council Fathers, is for us to see - clearly and anew - that God is present, that He concerns us and responds to us. And when faith in God is lacking our essential foundations give way because man loses his dignity. ... The Council reminds us that the Church ... has the mandate to transmit God's salvific word of love, so that the divine call which contains our eternal beatitude may be heard and accepted".
The Pope then went on to mention the four conciliar Constitutions, describing them as "the four cardinal points of our guiding compass": "Sacrosanctum Concilium" on the sacred liturgy, which speaks of the centrality of the mystery of Christ's presence in the Church; "Lumen Gentium" which highlights the Church's fundamental duty to glorify God; "Dei Verbum" on divine Revelation, which speaks of the living Word of God that unites and animates the Church throughout history, and finally "Gaudium et Spes" which deals with the way the Church transmits to the world the light it received from God.
"Vatican Council II", Benedict XVI concluded, "is a powerful appeal to us to make a daily rediscovery of the beauty of our faith, to understand it deeply through a more intense relationship with the Lord, and to live out our Christian vocation to the full".
Vatican City, 10 October 2012 (VIS) - The "Osservatore Romano" newspaper has produced a special booklet to mark the fiftieth anniversary of Vatican Council II
The booklet will narrate the events of the Council on the basis of contemporary accounts, previously unpublished material or little known details, images and photographs of the Popes who guided or experienced the event, including Joseph Ratzinger who participated as a young theologian.
Last summer Benedict XVI wrote an introduction to an edition of his own conciliar writings, to be published by the German publisher Herder and edited by Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Muller. That text, which is embargoed until 5 p.m. today, appears in the Italian, English and Spanish editions of the special booklet; it will also be published in the original German and in Italian in the "Osservatore Romano" of 11 October, and on the newspaper's website in seven languages (Italian, English, Spanish, German, French, Portuguese and Polish).
Vatican City, 10 October 2012 (VIS) - This afternoon the Holy Father is scheduled to receive in audience His Grace Rowan Williams, archbishop of Canterbury and primate of the Anglican Communion.
Vatican City, 10 October 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father:
- Elevated Bishop Frans Daneels O. Praem., secretary of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, to the dignity of archbishop.
- Appointed Fr. Vital Corbellini of the clergy of the diocese of Caxias do Sul, Brazil, missionary in the diocese of Ji-Parana and pastor of the parish of "Sao Joao Batista" at Jaru, as bishop of Maraba (area 81,832, population 646,000, Catholics 450,000, priests 35, religious 51), Brazil. The bishop-elect was born in Garibaldi, Brazil in 1959 and ordained a priest in 1986. He has worked in pastoral care in many different parishes and was vicar general of the diocese of Caxias do Sul from 1997 to 2001.
- Appointed Bishop Gregorio (Leozirio) Paixao Neto O.S.B., auxiliary of the archdiocese of Sao Salvador da Bahia, Brazil, as bishop of Petropolis (area 2,880, population 834,000, Catholics 646,000, priests 104, permanent deacons 2, religious 385), Brazil.


Doctors have removed the bullet lodged in her head and judge her condition stable. The girl, aged 14, was the victim of an Taliban fundamentalist attack she was shot outside her school. Since 2009, with the opening of a blog on the BBC, she has been a symbol of the fight against extremists and for girls' education.

Islamabad (AsiaNews) - Doctors say the operation on Malala Yousafzai, the 14 year old Pakistani activist for girls education, was "successful", which allowed the removal of a bullet that had lodged in her head. Yesterday, the young girl was targeted by the Taliban in the Swat Valley, a mountainous area in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, bordering Afghanistan, a stronghold of Muslim extremists against female education. After t surgery this morning, the doctors say her condition is "stable" and for now she is "out of danger", but it was decided to transfer her to hospital in Peshawar - by helicopter - for further treatment.

Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsab, speaking to the BBC's Urdu program, claimed responsibility for the act, saying they had targeted the girl because she was "against the Taliban" and promoted a "secular" lifestyle. Her activism in favour of education for women, he branded as an "obscenity". He finally declared that, if Reed survives the attack, "she will not be spared."

Meanwhile, the major governments of the world and political leaders in Islamabad have strongly condemned the assault on Malala Yousafzai, shot twice in the head and neck. Her class mate was also was injured, but her conditions are stable and not believed to be life threatening. Washington has condemned it as a "barbaric and cowardly"act, but above all on online protest against fundamentalist violence is sweeping through social media, in just a few hours thousands of people have wanted to send messages of support and solidarity with the girl via the web.

Malala Yousafzai (pictured) was shot while on board the school bus taking her home, after morning lessons. The girl rose to fame in 2009 at the age of 11, with her blog on the local language site of the BBC in which she denounced the attacks by Pakistani Islamists against girls and women's educational institutions, to prevent them from studying and emancipation. Within her virtual diary, Malala finally reported the cruelty of the Taliban and the violence through which they maintain power, terrorizing the local population.

The northwestern border is considered a stronghold of the Taliban, so that in some areas Shariah and the Islamic Courts are active, called in to judge disputes, as well as social behaviors and morality. There are hundreds of schools - even Christian - that have been closed in the Swat Valley, jeopardizing the education of tens of thousands of students and the work of about 8 thousand female teachers. The education of the new generations is one of the key ways for the government to overcome poverty and to ensure genuine development in the nation, as outlined in a special AsiaNews dossier (see Education can stop the Taliban in Pakistan). Among the few realities in the area for some time, a group of Sinhalese Carmelite nuns women dedicated to education (see AsiaNews 22/06/2012 Sinhalese Carmelites educate girls in Pakistan), however, the sisters had to leave after a year and a half because of threats from Islamic fundamentalists.



Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese,
10 Oct 2012

Sisters of St Paul de Chartres in Qeensland enjoying today's eConference
More than 20,000 in schools, universities, parishes and local halls across the Australia as well as a further 10,000 - 20,000 at sites in Hong Kong, Zimbawe, New Zealand, Fiji, East Timor, Malta, USA, Singapore, the Philippines and India took part in the Broken Bay Institute's seventh eConference which launched this morning.
Taking "Vatican II: An Event of Grace" as its theme, the eConference was streamed live enabling people no matter where they live to hear leading theologians, scholars and teachers as well as join in panel discussions and q and a forums.
But this year unlike previous years, the eConference was also a big event in the Twitterverse, says Annie Carrett, Communications Manager for the Broken Bay Catholic Diocese and one of the organisers of today's eConference.

Team from Mildura before the start of today's eConference
Not only were participants using Twitter joining in live conversations at #grace but the Facebook page for the event became a non-stop hub with posts of group photographs of those taking part in towns and cities throughout Australia. The page also had more than 16,342 "likes" with the number growing hour by hour.
Sites ranged from 20 to 200 people at today's event and each had its own facilitator so that after each address, the group could discuss it more fully, have questions answered and not only deepen their faith but their knowledge as well.
Hosted by Mike Bailey from the Archdiocese of Sydney, the eConference opened with the keynote address: Vatican II: A New Relationship with God, given by the Most Rev Michael Putney, Bishop of Townsville and one of the world's leading authorities on ecumenism.
"Half a century on we have an opportunity to examine the teachings of Vatican II in light of the Catholic tradition and in respect of questions that have arisen since," he said and pointed out that tomorrow, 11 October marks the 50th anniversary since the start of the Second Vatican Council in Rome in 1962.

A group of Ballina watch as Bishop Putney's keynote address is streamed live
Tomorrow solemn Mass will be held at St Peter's Basilica in Rome to commemorate the half century anniversary of Vatican II and to launch the Year of Faith, during which the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVII has urged every Catholic to study afresh the texts of Vatican II to rediscover and renew their Faith.
And today, thanks to this year's eConference, that was exactly what was happening.
Following the address by Bishop Putney and the ensuing facilitated discussions at each site, Sister Maryanne Confoy, one of the USA's most highly regarded theologians, spoke on "The Baptismal call to Holiness - a call to personal and communal ministry."
For the third 20 minute session of the days six session eConference, Bishop Putney gave a second address, this time expanding on Vatican II and "A new relationship with everyone else."

Bishop Michael Putney keynote speaker at seventh national eConference
After lunch, Sr Maryanne once again took the floor to speak on "Baptismal Ministry in the pluralist world."
The final two sessions of the eConference featured Paul Power, CEO of the Refugee Council of Australia who says Vatican II played a vital role in defining his life's work, and Jill Gowdie who leads the Evangelisation and Spiritual Formation for the Catholic Education Office at the Archdiocese of Brisbane.
DVDs of today's eConference will be available from the Broken Hill Institute and will provide an invaluable resource for anyone wishing to deepen their faith and learn more about the history of the Church and Vatican II.



KAMPALA, October 9, 2012 (CISA) -The Archbishop of Kampala His Grace Cyprian Kizito Lwanga has asked government to unconditionally release all political prisoners as the country marks 50 years of independence.
In his homily at Rubaga Cathedral on Sunday October 6, Archbishop Cyprian Kizito Lwanga said releasing political prisoners would be a big step towards achieving genuine peace, reconciliation and justice.
He said some of the political prisoners had been arrested and imprisoned unfairly.
According to the New Vision, the cleric listed some of the challenges affecting the country such as abuse of power, human rights violation, education system, corruption, ignorance and the failure to distinguish the relationship between culture, religion and politics.
He also called on government to restrict land eviction and speed up the process of resolving land related disputes.
Despite the enactment of the land bill, people are still being evicted from their land, Lwanga said.
He added that even the Catholic Church has not been spared from land grabbing by some people who encroached on its land.
“We live in a country full of contradictions; science and technology are making giant strides in all aspects of life, equipping humanity with all that it takes to make our planet a beautiful place for us all.
“Yet tragic situations of object poverty, disease and hunger are still killing thousands on a daily basis.
“Our destiny is still in our hands. All she is asking for is the space to breathe and thrive,” said the Archbishop, before calling on Ugandans to forget past mistakes.


Agenzia Fides REPORT - « "I am the vine, you are the branches"(Jn 15:5). Difference - the result of belonging? »: Jesus’ words taken from John’s Gospel and a question, inspired in particular by the reality of immigration accompanied the Scalabrini-Fest of Fruits, 2012. According to information sent to Fides Agency, the meeting was held from October 5 to 7 at the Center for Spirituality in Stuttgart of the Scalabrini Missionaries, in cooperation with the secular Scalabrini Missionaries.
At present, the mobility of people and the mingling of many cultural, linguistic and religious differences allow the need to find the foundations and the practicable ways for a future of peace and coexistence between peoples to grow, but also of authentic relationships among individuals and families. Among the 200 participants at the Scalabrini-Fest, representatives from all continents were present and, in addition to adults and children, there were many children and young people who live the experience of emigration.
The Forum of reflection allowed to explore the theme of the Festival. The Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Stuttgart, His Exc. Mgr. Thomas Maria Renz, responsible for pastoral youth and institutes of consecrated life, said the passage of John’s Gospel points out that we are deeply united in our diversity if we remain in Christ as branches joined to the vine, and receive the fruits of the Spirit, such as love, joy, peace: so we are no longer strangers, but we recognize ourselves as brothers and sisters. The Forum continued with the testimonies of the life of a secular missionary Scalabrinian in the encounter with the world of immigration and of a young married couple, he was from Cameroon and she was from Italy. Different vocations that, drawing from the same source of universal love - Jesus Christ crucified and risen -, proclaim in the Church and in today's society that it is possible to live communion among differences. (LD/SL


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danylakThe Most Reverend Roman Danylak, Ukrainian Apostolic Administrator Emeritus of Toronto and Eastern Canada, died on Sunday, October 7, 2012, at the age of 82.
Born on December 29, 1930, in Toronto, Ontario, and ordained to the priesthood in Saint Josaphat’s Seminary Chapel in Rome by Archbishop Maxim Hermaniuk, C.Ss.R., on October 13, 1957, Bishop Danylak was ordained to the episcopate in St. Michael’s Cathedral, Toronto, on March 25, 1993. He resigned as Apostolic Administrator in 1998.
Funeral Services will be held on Tuesday, October 9, and Wednesday, October 10, at 6:30 pm – Parastas at St. Josaphat Cathedral in Toronto. On Thursday, October 11, 2012, 10:00 am, their will be the Funeral Divine Liturgy at St. Josaphat Cathedral.