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Saturday, July 27, 2019
St. Victor I
Feast: July 28SOURCE: the Catholic Encyclopedia
The Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church of Greece has introduced an ecclesiastical "Unborn Child's Day". The Foundation "Pro Oriente" reported on Friday, citing the Greek Orthodox news portal "Romfea".
The aim of the new church memorial day, which is to be celebrated on the first Sunday after Christmas, is to raise awareness of the need to protect unborn life and raise awareness of the liberal abortion law and low birth rates in Greece. Since 1986, abortion has been in Greece legal. There is a twelve-week deadline, which can be extended in hardship cases - such as incest or rape. Every year, up to 150,000 children are aborted in Greece.
The "Let me live" movement, which proposed to the Holy Synod to introduce the "Unborn Child's Day", declared that it was "pleased and grateful". In fidelity to the gospel and to the tradition of the Orthodox Church, the movement is concerned that "the unborn child is a person and, from the conception, an image of God". To protect the lives of these children, the movement enters without "ifs and buts".
There has also been the introduction of a birth bonus for families from the third child, free access to kindergarten places in all eparchies as well as the involvement of parents in the organization of church education, the Orthodox Church had already tried in recent years to send a message.
On July 18, 2019, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a law that prevents "adverse actions" against companies or people on the basis of their religious views or actions.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed the bill with Chick-fil-A cups and a sandwich box around him.
"Discrimination is not tolerated in Texas," Abbott said.
State lawmakers recently tried to override an action by the San Antonio City Council in March, which voted against a Chick-fil-A restaurant at the municipal airport, citing the company's "legacy of anti-LGBTQ behavior."
Chick-fil-A is a private company, closes on Sundays, has often received adverse reactions to it religious beliefs. Its president, Dan Cathy, voiced support for "the biblical definition of the family unit" in 2012.
"No business should be discriminated against simply because its owners gave to a church, or to the Salvation Army, or to any other religious organization. No business should lose a government contract because of their religious beliefs," Abbott said. "The 'Save Chick-fil-A' legislation that I'm about to sign is a victory for religious freedom in Texas."
The Republican governor wrote in a tweet:
Today I signed the @ChickfilA law in Texas.
And, had a great lunch.
No business should be discriminated against simply because its owners donate to a church, the Salvation Army, or other religious organization.
Texas protects religious liberty.
Edited from CBS News - Image Source: Google Images of Greg Abbott
AMERICA/BRAZIL - "I gave my whole life to the Order": the Minister General of the Camillian Missionaries before dying Thursday, 25 July 2019
Granja Viana (Agenzia Fides) - On the night of 24 July, Father Leocir Pessini, Superior of the Order of Ministers of the Sick (Camillians), passed away due to the worsening of a serious illness. The news was sent to Agenzia Fides by the Secretary General of the Camillians, Fr. Gianfranco Lunardon.
Fr. Leocir, originally from Joaçaba, a city in the State of Santa Caterina in Brazil, comes from a family of Italian origins. A priest since 1980, he has always cultivated a great passion for the Camillian charism, the care of the sick, the humanization of the health world, the teaching of bioethical disciplines. Elected Superior General of the Order in June 2014, Fr. Pessini visited all the communities of the Order, met the confreres at all latitudes (39 nations), sharing with them efforts and hopes in the great challenge of embodying the charism of caring for the sick and teaching others to do the same.
"After the discovery of the disease, in September 2017, the Minister General spent a few months of therapy in Rome and from March 2019 he moved to San Paolo. The care on behalf of doctors, confreres and the affection of his parents and sisters, accompanied and consoled him in his encounter with the good and merciful face of God the Father", reads the note sent to Agenzia Fides.
"Before he died, Father Leo blessed those present - continued Fr. Lunardon. He expressed gratitude to everyone and wanted to reaffirm the commitment that characterized his existence: "I gave my whole life to the Order". To his mother, who was crying with his father and sister, he said: "they are tears of love, of pain and of dignity". (AP) (FULL TEXT Agenzia Fides, 25/7/2019)
A multi-faith crowd of 100,000 gather in Tamil Nadu for the procession of Saint James
St James is the first Catholic church on Rameswaram Island. The spread of Christianity on the island is the work of the Servant of God Antonio Criminali, the second martyr of India. Its façade has a cross as well as Hindu and Islamic symbols, to show that the believers of all religions are welcome.
New Delhi (AsiaNews/Agencies) – More than 100,000 people from different religious communities took part on Wednesday in the annual procession in the square in front of the small but highly decked out St James Catholic Church in Thangachimadam, Rameswaram (Pamban) Island, Tamil Nadu.
"Although it is a Christian holiday, people of other religions participate. It is only thanks to faith that devotees throng the festival,” said Ravichandrramavanni, president of the local Christian union.
The event attracts thousands of people every year, who come to the small island in the Gulf of Mannar for this and other religious celebrations. This event lasts ten days and the church knows that many other faithful will come. According to the president, "people crowd the church filled with faith in the power of healing through prayer".
The festival began with an overnight Mass, amid the lights of the decorations that illuminated the chariots and the church façade. The procession is called the ‘Chariot festival’ as three chariots carry three statues: The Virgin Mary, Jesus and Saint James on horseback.
The church, which is located in Ramanathapuram, a district that is part of the Diocese of Sivagangai, is the first Catholic place of worship on the island, which also has Hindu temples and Muslim mosques.
The church dates back to 1644 but Christianity arrived on the island with Italian Jesuit Antonio Criminali, Servant of God and second martyr of India, who began to proclaim the Gospel under a hut in 1546.
He was killed three years later by fishermen angry at Portuguese soldiers, but his sacrifice allowed his flock to escape by sea to safety.
Locally, the church is known as St James Santhiyagappar or Santhiya Rayapper Kovil. The original building was destroyed in 1933 and rebuilt seven years later in the same place.
The site draws Hindus and Muslims as well. Its façade has a Christian Cross, an Islamic crescent and a Hindu tower, meaning that in this place all faiths and faithful are respected.
FULL TEXT Source: Asia News IT
Church exec urges lawmakers not to heed Duterte on death penalty
By CBCP News
July 23, 2019
The church’s prison ministry called on lawmakers not to heed President Rodrigo Duterte’s call to bring back death penalty in the country.
Duterte’s call, which was made before hundreds of assembled lawmakers and diplomats on Monday, was meant to deter heinous crimes related to drugs, as well as plunder.
Rodolfo Diamante, executive secretary of the Episcopal Commission on Prison Pastoral Care, urged legislators to remain prudent over capital punishment.
“We urge them to study the bills thoroughly and determine if they will really address the problems of drug trafficking and plunder,” he said.
Diamante also urged the legislature dominated by allies of the Duterte administration not to pass measures just please the President.
“They have been elected by the people to work for their welfare, not the President’s,” he said.
The church official reiterated that capital punishment has never been a deterrent to crime and is anti-poor.
“Don’t give our people an illusion and a quick fix ‘solution’ to our problems. They deserve something better,” he added.
Duterte used his annual State of the Nation Address to call for death penalty as part of his bloody war on drugs and to supposedly address the nation’s deep-rooted corruption problem.
FULL TEXT CBCP
Pope appoints Vatican News journalist as Deputy Director of Press Office
Cristiane Murray was born in Rio de Janeiro; she is married and has two children. She has been part of Vatican Radio since 1995. Since April 2018 she has also been collaborating with the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops in preparation for the upcoming Synod for the Pan-Amazon Region.
By Linda Bordoni
Pope Francis has appointed Vatican Radio’s Brazilian journalist, Cristiane Murray, as Deputy Director of the Holy See Press Office. She will join new Director, Matteo Bruni, whose mandate began on 22 July.
Born in 1962 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Cristiane Murray has a degree in Business Administration and Marketing from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio. She joined Vatican Radio in 1995 and since then has been part of the Brazilian team that broadcasts daily programmes and produces content for the Vatican News Portal in Portuguese, for the Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
Reacting to the news of her appointment, Cristiane said she was deeply moved: “For all the journalists and my colleagues at the Dicastery for Communication, this represents an important sign of recognition for our daily work in bringing the message of the Gospel, the Pope and the Church to the world”.
Her personal thanks and the gratitude of all Vatican women, she said, go first of all to Pope Francis for having chosen her for this important task. She is profoundly grateful, she said, also to the Prefect, Paolo Ruffini, to the Editorial Director, Andrea Tornielli, as well as to the General Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops led by Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri with whom she has been working for over a year in preparation for the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon Region.
“I guarantee my full commitment and my enthusiasm to the Director, Matteo Bruni, and to all the staff of the Press Office, at the service of the Holy See,” she said.
Pride of the Dicastery
Paolo Ruffini noted that with Cristiane Murray’s appointment as Deputy Director of the Holy See Press Office, the managerial staff of the institution is now complete. He said that “the choice of a woman with roots in Brazil and an open gaze on the world is a testimony of the wish to build a team that knows how to speak to all”.
“I am sure that Cristiane, who has been working in Vatican media for so many years, and whose professionality and humanity have always been appreciated, will make a fundamental contribution of intelligence, sensitivity, historic memory and foresight in the service that we all seek to offer the Church,” he said.
The new Director of the Holy See Press Office, Matteo Bruni, expressed his welcome to Cristiane saying that the experience she has gained in years of service to the Church and to the Holy See are extremely valuable assets for this new position.
Andrea Torniellli, the Editorial Director of the Dicastery, also expressed his gratitude for Cristiane’s appointment which, he said, reflects not only recognition for her work at Vatican Radio, but also for her work with the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon.
FULL TEXT Release from VaticanNews VA - Image Share from Google Images - (Source - Catholic News Service, Twitter @CatholicNewsSvc)