Friday, July 13, 2012


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Vatican City, 13 July 2012 (VIS) - "Being witnesses of Jesus Christ in Africa today. 'Salt of the earth ... light of the World'" is the theme of the forthcoming Pan African Congress for Catholic Laity, which has been organised by the Pontifical Council for the Laity and is due to take place in Yaounde, Cameroon, from 4 to 9 September. The initiative is part of the council's tradition of organising continental and/or regional congresses for Catholic lay people in various parts of the world.
The event will be held at the Catholic University of Central Africa, and the decision to hold the congress in Africa is related to the Holy Father's apostolic trip to Cameroon and Angola in 2009 and, more recently, his visit to Benin in November 2011 to sign the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation "Africae Munus".
According to a communique released today: "the meeting demonstrates the commitment of the Pontifical Council for the Laity to journey together with the particular Churches. It also helps the laity to live their faith in communion with their pastors and to rediscover their co-responsibility for the Church’s mission in its many fields of apostolate".

Vatican City, 13 July 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father accepted the resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Choluteca, Honduras, presented by Bishop Guido Plante P.M.E., upon having reached the age limit.

Vatican City, 13 July 2012 (VIS) - The following prelates died in recent weeks:
- Cardinal Rodolfo Ignacio Quezada Toruno, archbishop emeritus of Guatemala, Guatemala, on 4 June at the age of 80.
- Cardinal Eugenio de Araujo Sales, archbishop emeritus of Sao Sebastiao do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on 9 July at the age of 91.
- Bishop Luiz Gonzaga Bergonzini, emeritus of Guarulhos, Brazil, on 13 June at the age of 76.
- Archbishop Raymond Eid, emeritus of Damascus of the Maronites, Syria, on 11 June at the age of 81.
- Bishop Ireneo Garcia Alonso, emeritus of Albacete, Spain, on 4 June at the age of 89.
- Bishop Jouzas Tunaitis, former auxiliary of Vilnius, Lithuania, on 1 June at the age of 83.
- Bishop Albino Mamede Cleto, emeritus of Coimbra, Portugal, on 15 June at the age of 77.
- Bishop Angelo Cuniberti I.M.C., former apostolic vicar of Florencia, Colombia, on 26 June at the age of 91.
- Bishop Sergio Goretti emeritus of Assisi - Nocera Umbra - Gualdo Tadino, Italy, on 22 June at the age of 83.
- Bishop Anthony Ekezia Ilonu, emeritus of Okigwe, Nigeria, on 15 June at the age of 74.
- Archbishop Joviano de Lima Junior S.S.S. of Riberao Preto, Brazil, on 21 June at the age of 70.
- Archbishop Alcides Mendoza Castro, emeritus of Cuzco, Peru, on 20 June at the age of 84.
- Bishop Mogale Paul Nkhumishe, emeritus of Polokwane, South Africa, on 29 June at the age of 74.
- Archbishop Aloysio Jose Leal Penna S.J., emeritus of Botucatu, Brazil, on 19 June at the age of 79.
- Bishop Gilbert Blaize Rego, emeritus of Simla and Chandigarh, India, on 21 June at the age of 90.
- Bishop Rudolf Schmid, former auxiliary of Augsburg, Germany, on 24 June at the age of 97.
- Archbishop Albert Joseph Tsiahoana, emeritus of Antsiranana, Madagascar, on 15 June at the age of 84.


FATHER MIKE JORDAN of Laredo, Texas was killed on Monday, July 10, 2012 in a car accident.  He was on a trip raising money for missions when the accident occurred. It happened on I-37 in Atascosa County. Another priest Fr. Ed Roche was also in the car but survived with some injuries. Fr. Jordan was driving a Saturn when a tractor-trailer overturned and the two vehicles struck. Fr. Jordan spent 20 years in the Philippines helping the poor and sick. He was pastor of St. Anthony Parish in Robstown. He was also active in training missionaries and the pro-life community.


A German magazine entitled Titanic has pictured Pope Benedict XVI with yellow stains on his white cassock. The Pontiff has begun legal procedures to halt further production of the magazine.
The headline above the picture reads: `Hallelujah in the Vatican - the leak has been found!" The back of the magazine shows another photo of the Pope with a brown mark.
One of the representatives of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Germany, Matthias Kopp, said the picture was an infringement of the Pope's personal rights and therefore illegal.



YOU ARE CALLED! WYD Rio 2013 - one year to go!

St Mary of the Cross MacKillop Upper Blue Mountains Parishioner Mary Gale reflects on her pilgrimage to WYD11 Madrid. Mary is currently discerning her vocation with the Nashville Dominicans. Watch more pilgrim videos here.
With World Youth Day (WYD) Rio 2013 only one year away, young people from throughout the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta are invited to join Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP for a special celebration at Patrick’s Cathedral in Parramatta on Saturday 28 July.
The ‘YOU ARE CALLED’ event will feature a preview of WYD Rio 2013, testimonials from pilgrims from WYDs past, a concert, a youth group expo and Mass with Bishop Anthony.
Go to event details
Catholic Outlook: WYD pilgrims share their Madrid experience
Anointed and Sent: ACYMC 2012
The 2012 Australian Catholic Youth Ministry Convention (ACYMC) will be held in Campbelltown in September, where the Bishop of Parramatta and Australian Catholic Bishops Conference delegate for youth, Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP, will meet with key youth ministry leaders from around the country.
Read full story
Leaders in Catholic education focus on new evangelisation
Bishop Anthony: Forming Young People of Principle, Purpose & Passion
SCENE 2012: 11 July-15 July
Faith at the Fiddler: 19 July
Visit Catholic Youth Parramatta


Mgr Mario Zenari pleads with the UN Security Council in New York. The situation can only get worse if the international community remains divided. Some 200 people die in another massacre in Tremseh (Hama).

Damascus (AsiaNews) - "The international community should hurry up and help Syria out of this hellish trap," said Mgr Mario Zenari, apostolic nuncio to Damascus. Speaking to AsiaNews, he pleaded with the members of the United Nations Security Council, especially China and Russia, and the Arab League, to put aside their differences and do something tangible to stop the bloodshed that has cost 14,000 lives in the past 16 months.

After three weeks out of the country, the prelate returned to Syria only to find the situation had worsened since he had left.

In Tremseh, Hama province, 200 more innocent people died in another massacre today. Like in Houla and al-Qubayr, the military and rebels blame each other.

Combat helicopters and tanks struck at the village, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported. They were followed by members of the Shabiha (ghosts) paramilitary militia, who carried out summary executions.

Syria's official news agency SANA, blamed Muslim terrorists for the incident, claiming that they are trying to sow fear and chaos in order to influence the UN Security Council in New York.

"The situation is getting worse," Mgr Zenari noted. "When I returned security was worse. It is no longer possible to move freely. Fighting and abductions are taking place in areas that were under control until recently."

The Security Council in New York saw China and Russia veto fresh sanctions against Bashar al-Assad's regime. Moscow and Beijing are opposed to any resolution against the Syrian government.

The two members accuse Western government of trying a repeat of the strategy used in Libya, taking advantage of UN resolutions to start a war in the region.

Opposition from Russia and China make UN and Arab League envoy Kofi Annan's work even harder. In recent weeks, he asked for Iran's support to try mediation with the regime and reach a peace deal.

On 16 July, the former UN secretary general will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to get Russia on board.

"The international community must try to speak with a single voice and stop Syria from falling off the precipice," the Vatican nuncio said. "Without everyone's cooperation, Annan's great plan is worthless."

Increasingly, the innocent are the victims of the tragedy, especially children. "Killing the defenceless does not hurt only the Syrian people but humanity as a whole." (S.C.)



Agenzia Fides REPORT - The Apostolic Nuncio of São Tomé and Principe, His Exc. Mgr. Novatus Rugambwa, presided along with some Angolan Bishops, the celebration of the inauguration of the Cathedral of the Diocese of Lwena, in the province of Moxico on Sunday, July 8. The celebration, which lasted several hours and was deeply felt by many of the faithful, was also attended by government authorities.
The inauguration of the Cathedral is a sign of rebirth and peace. During the 34 years of war in Angola (from 1968, the beginning of armed struggle for independence, to 2002, signing of the peace) the deterioration of the structures at all levels - the people and the Church – was incalculable.
According to information provided by Ans agency, the diocese of Lwena, which covers an area of 233,000 square kilometers, lived under the sign of persecution and violence. Many Christian communities for years - some even for decades – did not have or meet a priest or a missionary, kept themselves alive in total isolation imposed by the situation of war, thanks to the courage and decisive witness of so many lay catechists, in some cases reaching martyrdom.
When unexpectedly peace arrived, in 2002, the local Church started a process of reconstruction of the social and ecclesial fabric. Mgr. Tirso Blanco, SDB, Bishop of Lwena since March 2008, has promoted the creation of a diocesan preparatory seminary, the gradual reactivation of ancient churches and missions (main fruit of the lengthy missionary work of the Portuguese Benedictines in the colonial era), the return or the arrival of many religious congregations in the territory of the diocese. A Salesian community has been present in Lwena since 1982 where four Salesians work at the service of the parish, some Christian communities scattered in the rural area, the Oratory-Youth Center, a primary and secondary school, literacy centers and professional formation. (SL) (Agenzia Fides 13/7/2012)


Matthew 10: 16 - 23

16 "Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.
17 Beware of men; for they will deliver you up to councils, and flog you in their synagogues,
18 and you will be dragged before governors and kings for my sake, to bear testimony before them and the Gentiles.
19 When they deliver you up, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour;
20 for it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
21 Brother will deliver up brother to death, and the father his child, and children will rise against parents and have them put to death;
22 and you will be hated by all for my name's sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved.
23 When they persecute you in one town, flee to the next; for truly, I say to you, you will not have gone through all the towns of Israel, before the Son of man comes.


St. Henry II
Feast: July 13

Feast Day:July 13
Born:May 6, 972, Bavaria, Germany
Died:July 13, 1024, Gottingen, Germany
Canonized:1146 by Pope Eugene III
Major Shrine:Bamberg Cathedral
Patron of:against sterility, Benedictine Oblates, childless people, disabled people, dukes, kings, people rejected by religious orders
German King and Holy Roman Emperor, son of Duke Henry II (the Quarrelsome) and of the Burgundian Princess Gisela; b. 972; d. in his palace of Grona, at Gottingen, 13 July, 1024.
Like his predecessor, Otto III, he had the literary education of his time. In his youth he had been destined for the priesthood. Therefore he became acquainted with ecclesiastical interests at an early age.
Willingly he performed pious practices, gladly also he strengthened the Church of Germany, without, however, ceasing to regard ecclesiastical institutions as pivots of his power, according to the views of Otto the Great. With all his learning and piety, Henry was an eminently sober man, endowed with sound, practical common sense. He went his way circumspectly, never attempting anything but the possible and, wherever it was practicable, applying the methods of amiable and reasonable good sense. This prudence, however, was combined with energy and conscientiousness. Sick and suffering from fever, he traversed the empire in order to maintain peace. At all times he used his power to adjust troubles. The masses especially he wished to help.
The Church, as the constitutional Church of Germany, and therefore as the advocate of German unity and of the claims of inherited succession, raised Henry to the throne. The new king straightway resumed the policy of Otto I both in domestic and in foreign affairs.
This policy first appeared in his treatment of the Eastern Marches. The encroachments of Duke Boleslaw, who had founded a great kingdom, impelled him to intervene. But his success was not marked.
In Italy the local and national opposition to the universalism of the German king had found a champion in Arduin of Ivrea. The latter assumed the Lombard crown in 1002. In 1004 Henry crossed the Alps. Arduin yielded to his superior power. The Archbishop of Milan now crowned him King of Italy. This rapid success was largely due to the fact that a large part of the Italian episcopate upheld the idea of the Roman Empire and that of the unity of Church and State.
On his second expedition to Rome, occasioned by the dispute between the Counts of Tuscany and the Crescentians over the nomination to the papal throne, he was crowned emperor on 14 February, 1014. But it was not until later, on his third expedition to Rome, that he was able to restore the prestige of the empire completely.
Before this happened, however, he was obliged to intervene in the west. Disturbances were especially prevalent throughout the entire north-west. Lorraine caused great trouble. The Counts of Lutzelburg (Luxemburg), brothers-in-law of the king, were the heart and soul of the disaffection in that country. Of these men, Adalbero had made himself Bishop of Trier by uncanonical methods (1003); but he was not recognized any more than his brother Theodoric, who had had himself elected Bishop of Metz.
True to his duty, the king could not be induced to abet any selfish family policy at the expense of the empire. Even though Henry, on the whole, was able to hold his own against these Counts of Lutzelburg, still the royal authority suffered greatly by loss of prestige in the north-west.
Burgundy afforded compensation for this. The lord of that country was Rudolph, who, to protect himself against his vassals, joined the party of Henry II, the son of his sister, Gisela, and to Henry the childless duke bequeathed his duchy, despite the opposition of the nobles (1006). Henry had to undertake several campaigns before he was able to enforce his claims. He did not achieve any tangible result, he only bequeathed the theoretical claims on Burgundy to his successors.
Better fortune awaited the king in the central and eastern parts of the empire. It is true that he had a quarrel with the Conradinians over Carinthia and Swabia: but Henry proved victorious because his kingdom rested on the solid foundation of intimate alliance with the Church.
That his attitude towards the Church was dictated in part by practical reasons, primarily he promoted the institutions of the Church chiefly in order to make them more useful supports his royal power, is clearly shown by his policy. How boldly Henry posed as the real ruler of the Church appears particularly in the establishment of the See of Bamberg, which was entirely his own scheme.
He carried out this measure, in 1007, in spite of the energetic opposition of the Bishop of Wurzburg against this change in the organization of the Church. The primary purpose of the new bishopric was the germanization of the regions on the Upper Main and the Regnitz, where the Wends had fixed their homes. As a large part of the environs of Bamberg belonged to the king, he was able to furnish rich endowments for the new bishopric. The importance of Bamberg lay principally in the field of culture, which it promoted chiefly by its prosperous schools. Henry, therefore, relied on the aid of the Church against the lay powers, which had become quite formidable. But he made no concessions to the Church.
Though naturally pious, and though well acquainted with ecclesiastical culture, he was at bottom a stranger to her spirit. He disposed of bishoprics autocratically. Under his rule the bishops, from whom he demanded unqualified obedience, seemed to be nothing but officials of the empire. He demanded the same obedience from the abbots. However, this political dependency did not injure the internal life of the German Church under Henry. By means of its economic and educational resources the Church had a blessed influence in this epoch.
But it was precisely this civilizing power of the German Church that aroused the suspicions of the reform party. This was significant, because Henry was more and more won over to the ideas of this party. At a synod at Goslar he confirmed decrees that tended to realize the demands made by the reform party. Ultimately this tendency could not fail to subvert the Othonian system, moreover could not fail to awaken the opposition of the Church of Germany as it was constituted.
This hostility on the part of the German Church came to a head in the emperor's dispute with Archbishop Aribo of Mainz. Aribo was an opponent of the reform movement of the monks of Cluny. The Hammerstein marriage imbroglio afforded the opportunity he desired to offer a bold front against Rome. Otto von Hammerstein had been excommunicated by Aribo on account of his marriage with Irmengard, and the latter had successfully appealed to Rome.
This called forth the opposition of the Synod of Seligenstadt, in 1023, which forbade an appeal to Rome without the consent of the bishop. This step meant open rebellion against the idea of church unity, and its ultimate result would have been the founding of a German national Church. In this dispute the emperor was entirely on the side of the reform party. He even wanted to institute international proceedings against the unruly archbishop by means of treaties with the French king. But his death prevented this.
Before this Henry had made his third journey to Rome in 1021. He came at the request of the loyal Italian bishops, who had warned him at Strasburg of the dangerous aspect of the Italian situation, and also of the pope, who sought him out at Bamberg in 1020. Thus the imperial power, which had already begun to withdraw from Italy, was summoned back thither. This time the object was to put an end to the supremacy of the Greeks in Italy. His success was not complete; he succeeded, however, in restoring the prestige of the empire in northern and central Italy.
Henry was far too reasonable a man to think seriously of readopting the imperialist plans of his predecessors. He was satisfied to have ensured the dominant position of the empire in Italy within reasonable bounds. Henry's power was in fact controlling, and this was in no small degree due to the fact that he was primarily engaged in solidifying the national foundations of his authority.
The later ecclesiastical legends have ascribed ascetic traits to this ruler, some of which certainly cannot withstand serious criticism. For instance, the highly varied theme of his virgin marriage to Cunegond has certainly no basis in fact.
The Church canonized this emperor in 1146, and his wife Cunegond in 1200.