Bangui (Agenzia Fides) - "Monsignor Firmin was a key person in all the mediation processes to try and keep peace in Bambari, and was therefore known by everyone. His assassins cannot say they killed a person they did not know", local Church sources told Agenzia Fides in commenting the killing, on June 29, of Mgr. Firmin Gbagoua, Vicar General of the diocese of Bambari, in the center of the Central African Republic.
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Saturday, July 7, 2018
Pope Francis in Bari "…may the longing for peace rise higher than any dark cloud” - Welcomes Patriarchs with Full Video
Pope Francis addressed the faithful gathered in the square outside of the Basilica of St Nicholas, in the Italian city of Bari, on Saturday after meeting with Catholic and Orthodox leaders. He reflected on the Middle Eastern origins of the Christian tradition, and of the commitment undertaken by the religious leaders to walk, pray, and work together “in the hope that the art of encounter will prevail over strategies of conflict”.
Jesus comes from the Middle East
Middle East birthplace of Christianity
Hope in the power of signs
Exploitation of the Middle East
Peace for the sake of children
Pope Francis "Let us pray as one, begging the Lord of heaven for that peace which the powerful of our world have not yet..." Prayer Meeting FULL Official Text + Video in Bari
INTRODUCTORY WORDS OF THE POPE
AT THE PRAYER MEETING
AT THE PRAYER MEETING
“Rotonda” on the Bari seafront
Saturday, 7 July 2018
Saturday, 7 July 2018
We have come as pilgrims to Bari, this window open to the Near East, carrying in our hearts our Churches, our peoples and all those living in situations of great suffering. We are saying to them, “We are close to you”. I thank you from my heart, dear brothers, for coming here so generously and willingly. I am also profoundly grateful to all our hosts in this city of acceptance and encounter.
The Holy Mother of God sustains us as we journey together. Here in Bari she is venerated as Hodegetria: the one who shows us the way. Here lie the relics of Saint Nicholas, the Oriental Bishop whose veneration crosses seas and bridges boundaries between Churches. May Nicholas, the wonder-worker, intercede to heal the wounds that so many people bear within them. Here, as we contemplate the horizon and the sea, we feel drawn to live this day with minds and hearts turned towards the Middle East, the crossroads of civilizations and the cradle of the great monotheistic religions.
From the Middle East the Lord, the “sun from on high” (Lk 1:78), came forth to visit us. From there, the light of faith spread throughout the world. There ever-fresh streams of spirituality and monasticism have their source. There ancient and unique rites are preserved, together with an inestimable patrimony of sacred art and theology. There the heritage of our great Fathers in the faith lives on. This tradition is a treasure to be preserved to the utmost of our ability, for in the Middle East our very souls are rooted.
Yet this region so full of light, especially in recent years, has been covered by dark clouds of war, violence and destruction, instances of occupation and varieties of fundamentalism, forced migration and neglect. All this has taken place amid the complicit silence of many. The Middle East has become a land of people who leave their own lands behind. There is also the danger that the presence of our brothers and sisters in the faith will disappear, disfiguring the very face of the region. For a Middle East without Christians would not be the Middle East.
This day begins with our prayer that God’s light may disperse the darkness of the world. We have already lit, before Saint Nicholas, the “one-flame lamp”, a symbol of the one Church. Today, as one, we want to kindle a flame of hope. May the lamps we will place be so many signs of a light that continues to shine forth in the dark. Christians are the light of the world (cf. Mt 5:14) not only when everything is bright around them, but also when, in dark moments of history, they refuse to be resigned to the encircling gloom but instead feed the wick of hope with the oil of prayer and love. For when we lift up our hands to heaven in prayer, and we stretch out our hands to our brothers and sisters without seeking our own advantage, then the fire of the Spirit, the Spirit of unity and of peace, is kindled and leaps into flame.
Let us pray as one, begging the Lord of heaven for that peace which the powerful of our world have not yet been able to find. From the waters of the Nile to the Jordan Valley and beyond, through the Orontes to the Tigris and the Euphrates, may the plea of the Psalm resound: “Peace be upon you!” (122:8). For all our suffering brothers and sisters, and for our friends of every people and creed, let us say again and again: Peace be upon you! With the Psalmist, let us offer this prayer in a special way for Jerusalem, the holy city beloved of God and wounded by men, for which the Lord continues to weep: Peace be upon you!
Let there be peace!This is the cry of all those who are Abel today, a cry that rises up to God’s throne. For their sake, we have no right, in the Middle East or anywhere else in the world, to say, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Gen 4:9). Indifference kills, and we desire to lift up our voices in opposition to this murderous indifference. We want to give a voice to those who have none, to those who can only wipe away their tears. For the Middle East today is weeping, suffering and silent as others trample upon those lands in search of power or riches. On behalf of the little ones, the simple ones, the wounded, and all those at whose side God stands, let us beg, “Let there be peace!” May the “God of all consolation” (2 Cor 1:3), who heals the broken-hearted and binds up every wound (cf. Ps 147:3), hear our prayer today.
Flood hits Japan: 38 dead and 50 missing
Approximately 1.6 million people abandon homes. Bad weather caused mud sludge and flooding. Houses and streets collapsed. The most affected prefecture is that of Hiroshima: 21 confirmed deaths.
Tokyo (AsiaNews) - At least 38 dead and 50 missing because of the torrential rains that have hit Western Japan for days. Floods caused mud avalanches and flooding, destroying houses, roads and burying cars.
About 48 thousand units of self-defense forces, police and firefighters are deployed in search for trapped, injured or deceased persons. Evacuation orders and notices were issued to at least 4.72 million people. 1.6 million have left their homes.
The most affected prefecture is that of Hiroshima, where 21 of the confirmed deaths took place (see photo n.2). Other deaths occurred in the prefectures of Osaka, Shiga, Hyogo, Okayama and Ehime. At the moment the authorities have canceled the state of emergency in various prefectures, but they remain active in Kyoto and Hyogo. The rains are expected to continue until tomorrow.
In Hiroshima, the situation now seems under control. Fr Arnaldo Negri, a PIME missionary in Fukuyama, in the diocese of Hiroshima, specifies that the main problem was the overflowing of the river in some places and the landslides that dragged the wooden houses.
Antonio Camacho, head of five parishes in Kyoto, said he had been stuck for four days in his home for security reasons. "A river near Kameoka is overflowing - says the missionary - and many houses have been damaged. I hope tomorrow I can celebrate Sunday Mass in the other parishes ".
"The parishioners are at home and are well, thank God", concludes Fr. Camacho. "Now it's raining less. Maybe tonight they will come to Mass, I do not know how many people. We will pray for other people in other areas and for those who have lost their homes.
Text Source: AsiaNews IT
Pope Benedict XI (Latin: Benedictus XI; 1240 – 7 July 1304), born (Nicholas Boccasini) Born at Treviso, Italy, 1240; died at Perugia, 7 July, 1304. He entered the Dominican Order at the age of fourteen. After fourteen years of study, he became lector of theology, which office he filled for several years. In 1296 he was elected Master General of the Order. As at this time hostility to Boniface VIII was becoming more pronounced, the new general issued an ordinance forbidding his subjects to favour in any way the opponents of the reigning pontiff; he also enjoined on them to defend in their sermons, when opportune, the legitimacy of the election of Boniface. This loyalty of Boccasini, which remained unshaken to the end, was recognized by Boniface, who showed him many marks of favour and confidence.
Thus with the two cardinal-legates, the Dominican General formed the important embassy, the purpose of which was the concluding of an armistice between Edward I of England and Philip IV of France, then at war with each other. In the year 1298 Boccasini was elevated to the cardinalate; he was afterwards appointed Bishop of Ostia and Dean of the Sacred College. As at that time Hungary was rent by civil war, the cardinal-bishop was sent thither by the Holy See as legate a latere to labour for the restoration of peace.
At the time of the return of the legate to Rome, the famous contest of Boniface VIII with Philip the Fair had reached its height. When, in 1303, the enemies of the pope had made themselves masters of the sacred palace, of all the cardinals and prelates only the two Cardinal-Bishop of Ostia and Sabina remained at the side of the venerable Pontiff to defend him from the violence of William of Nogaret and Sciarra Colonna.
A month after this scene of violence, Boniface having died, Boccasini was unanimously elected Pope, 22 October, taking the name of Benedict XI. The principal event of his pontificate was the restoration of peace with the French court. Immediately after his election Philip sent three ambassadors to the pope bearing the royal letter of congratulation.
The king, while professing his obedience and devotion, recommended to the benevolence of the pope the Kingdom and Church of France. Benedict, judging a policy of indulgence to be necessary for the restoration of peace with the French court, absolved Philip and his subjects from the censures they had incurred and restored the king and kingdom to the rights and privileges of which they had been deprived by Boniface. The Colonna cardinals were also absolved from their censures, but not reinstated in their former dignities. This policy of leniency Benedict carried out without compromising the dignity of the Holy See or the memory of Boniface VIII. Nogaret and Sciarra Colonna and those implicated in the outrage of Anagni were declared excommunicated and summoned to appear before the pontifical tribunal.
After a brief pontificate of eight months, Benedict died suddenly at Perugia. It was suspected, not altogether without reason, that his sudden death was caused by poisoning through the agency of William of Nogaret. Benedict XI was beatified in the year 1773. His feast is celebrated at Rome and throughout the Dominican Order on the 7th of July. He is the author of a volume of sermons and commentaries on a part of the Gospel of St. Matthew, on the Psalms, the Book of Job, and the Apocalypse. Text from the Catholic Encyclopedia