CATHOLIC NEWS WORLD: WED. DEC. 29, 2010: HEADLINES-
CATHERINE OF BOLOGNA: SPIRITUAL WEAPONS AGAINST EVIL
VATICAN CITY, 29 DEC 2010 (VIS REPORT) - The Holy Father dedicated his catechesis during today's general audience, held in the Paul VI Hall in the presence of 8,000 people, to St. Catherine of Bologna (1413-1463).
Born to a noble family in the Italian city of Bologna, at the age of ten she moved to Ferrara where she entered the court of Niccolo III d'Este as a maid of honour. There she received a very careful education which would later serve her during her monastic life when "she used the cultural and artistic knowledge acquired over those years to great advantage", the Pope said.
In 1427, at the age of fourteen, she left the court to dedicate herself to religious life in a community of young women. Two years later the leader of this group founded an Augustinian convent, but Catherine and a number of others preferred Franciscan spirituality and transformed the community into Poor Clares.
The saint "made great spiritual progress in this new phase of her life, though she also had to face great trails", the Pope explained. "She experienced the night of the spirit, tormented even by the temptation of disbelief in the Eucharist. After much suffering, the Lord consoled her. In a vision He gave her the clear awareness of the real Eucharistic presence". In another vision God revealed the forgiveness of her sins, giving Catherine a "powerful experience of divine mercy".
In 1431 the saint had yet another vision, this time of the Final Judgement, which led her "to intensify her prayers and penance for the salvation of sinners. Satan continued to assail her as she increasingly entrusted herself to the Lord and the Virgin Mary. In her writings, Catherine left us essential notes on this mysterious struggle, from which, by the grace of God, she emerged victorious".
These notes are contained in her one written work, the "Treatise on the Seven Spiritual Weapons" in which Catherine teaches that to combat evil it is necessary: "(1) to be careful always to do good; (2) to believe that we can never achieve anything truly good by ourselves; (3) to trust in God and, for His love, never to fear the battle against evil, either in the world or in ourselves; (4) to meditate frequently on the events and words of Jesus' life, especially His passion and death; (5) to remember that we must die; (6) to keep the benefits of heaven firmly in our minds, (7) to be familiar with Holy Scripture, keeping it in our hearts to guide all our thoughts and actions".
"In her convent Catherine, though used to the court of Ferrara, ... performed even the most humble tasks with love and ready obedience", said the Holy Father, recalling also that, out of obedience, the saint "accepted the job of mistress of novices, although she felt she was incapable of carrying out the role". In the same spirit she agreed to move to Bologna as abbess of a new monastery though she would have preferred to end her days in Ferrara.
Catherine died on 9 March 1463 and was canonised by Pope Clement XI in 1712. "With her words and life", Benedict XVI concluded, "she strongly invites us always to allow ourselves to be guided by God, to do His will every day even if it does not always correspond to our own plans, and to trust in His Providence which never abandons us. In this perspective, St. Catherine also invites us to rediscover the value of the virtue of obedience".
VATICAN CITY, 29 DEC 2010 (VIS) - Made public yesterday afternoon was a Letter from the Pope, written in Latin and dated 21 December, in which he appoints Cardinal Ivan Dias, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, as his special envoy to the closing celebrations of the Jubilee Year of the Church in Vietnam, called to mark the 350th anniversary of the creation of the first two apostolic vicariates in the country, and the fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of the Catholic hierarchy. The celebrations are due to take place at the Marian shrine of LaVang from 4 to 6 January 2011.
The cardinal will be accompanied by Fr. Antoine Duong Quynh, chancellor of the archdiocese of Hue, Vietnam, and rector of the cathedral of Phu Cam in Hue; and by Fr. Francois Xavier Vu Phan Long O.F.M., secretary of the biblical commission of the Episcopal Conference of Vietnam.
VATICAN CITY, 29 DEC 2010 (VIS) - Following today's general audience, the Holy Father received Archbishop Salvatore Pennacchio, apostolic nuncio to India and to Nepal.
VATICAN CITY, 29 DEC 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed:
- As members of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum": Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace; Archbishop Douglas Young S.V.D. of Mount Hagen, Papua New Guinea; Msgr. Manfred Ertl, currently consultor of the same dicastery; Laurence de la Brosse, president of the "Association Internationale des Charites"; Fr. Simon T. Faddoul, president of Caritas Lebanon; Michael Thio Yauw Beng, president of the "Societe de Saint Vincent de Paul ‑ Conseil General International"; Roberto H. Tarazona Ponte, "Asistente de la Oficina de Asesoria Pastoral de Caritas" in Peru; Henrietta T. de Villa, currently consultor of the same dicastery, and Carlos Augusto de Oliveira Camargo, currently consultor of the same dicastery.
- As consultors of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum": Fr. Paolo Asolan, professor at the "Redemptor Hominis" Pontifical Institute of Rome's Pontifical Lateran University; Fr. Silverio Nieto Nunez, director of the "Servicio Juridico Civil" of the Spanish Episcopal Conference, and Paolo Luca Beccegato, head of the international unit of Caritas Italy.
- As members of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith: Cardinal Angelo Amato S.D.B., prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, and Cardinal Kurt Koch, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.
- As members of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches: His Beatitude Cardinal Antonios Naguib, Patriarch of Alexandria of the Copts, Egypt; Cardinal Francesco Monterisi, archpriest of the papal basilica of St. Paul's Outside-the-Walls, and Cardinal Kurt Koch.
- As members of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments: Cardinal Kazimierz Nycz, archbishop of Warsaw, Poland; Cardinal Albert Malcolm Ranjith Patabendige Don, archbishop of Colombo, Sri Lanka; Cardinal Angelo Amato S.D.B.; Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura; Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, and Cardinal Velasio De Paolis C.S., president of the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See.
- As members of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints: Cardinal Francesco Monterisi; Cardinal Fortunato Baldelli, penitentiary major of the Apostolic Penitentiary; Cardinal Paolo Sardi, vice chamberlain of Holy Roman Church and patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.
- As a member of the Congregation for Bishops: Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke.
- As members of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples: Cardinal Medardo Joseph Mazombwe, archbishop emeritus of Lusaka, Zambia; Cardinal Albert Malcolm Ranjith Patabendige Don, and Cardinal Robert Sarah, president of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum".
- As members of the Congregation for the Clergy: Cardinal Donald William Wuerl, archbishop of Washington, U.S.A., and Cardinal Kazimierz Nycz.
- As a member of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life: Cardinal Paolo Sardi.
- As a member of the Congregation for Catholic Education: Cardinal Mauro Piacenza.
- As a member of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura: Cardinal Velasio De Paolis C.S.
- As members of the Pontifical Council for the Laity: Cardinal Paolo Romeo of Palermo, Italy; Cardinal Robert Sarah, and Cardinal Paolo Sardi.
- As members of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity: Cardinal Donald William Wuerl, and Cardinal Angelo Amato S.D.B.
- As a member of the presidential committee of the Pontifical Council for the Family: Cardinal Raul Eduardo Vela Chiriboga, archbishop emeritus Quito, Ecuador.
- As members of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace: Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo Pasinya, archbishop of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo; Cardinal Reinhard Marx, archbishop of Munich and Freising, Germany, and Cardinal Robert Sarah.
- As a member of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum": Cardinal Medardo Joseph Mazombwe.
- As a member of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples: His Beatitude Cardinal Antonios Naguib.
- As members of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts: Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, and Cardinal Velasio De Paolis C.S.
- As members of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue: Cardinal Kurt Koch, and Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture, of the Pontifical Commission for the Cultural Patrimony of the Church, and of the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology.
- As members of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications: Cardinal Raymundo Damasceno Assis, archbishop of Aparecida, Brazil, and Cardinal Mauro Piacenza.
- As a member of the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelisation: Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi.
- As a counsellor of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America: Cardinal Francesco Monterisi.
- As members of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America: Cardinal Raul Eduardo Vela Chiriboga; Cardinal Paolo Romeo, and Cardinal Raymundo Damasceno Assis.
- Msgr. Marcello Bartolucci, under secretary of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, as secretary of the same congregation, at the same time elevating him to the dignity of archbishop. The archbishop-elect was born in Bastia Umbra, Italy in 1944 and ordained a priest in 1968.
- Fr. Boguslaw Turek C.S.M.A., bureau chief of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, as under secretary of the same congregation.
- Msgr. Celso Morga Iruzubieta of the clergy of the diocese of Calahorra y La Calzada - Logrono, Spain, under secretary of the Congregation for the Clergy, as secretary of the same congregation, at the same time elevating him to the dignity of archbishop. The archbishop-elect was born in 1948 and ordained a priest in 1972.
- Msgr. Serge Poitras of the clergy of the diocese of Chicoutimi, Canada, official of the Congregation for Bishops, as adjunct under secretary of the same congregation.
Report from Oblate Website:
Reverend John F. Harvey, OSFS, 92, an Oblate of St. Francis de Sales for 73 years, died on Monday, December 27, 2010, at Union Hospital in Elkton, Maryland.
Fr. Harvey, son the late Patrick J. and Margaret (Harkins) Harvey was born in Philadelphia in 1918. He attended St. Columba Parish School, and after graduating from Northeast Catholic High School for Boys in 1936, he entered the Oblate Novitiate, making his first profession of vows on September 8, 1937. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 3, 1944 at the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia by the Most. Rev. Hugh Lamb, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia.
After earning his bachelor of arts degree in philosophy in 1941 from Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., Fr. Harvey continued his studies, earning graduate degrees in psychology and theology, and completed a doctorate in moral theology there 10 years later.
“Fr. Harvey’s commitment to pastoral care in the Church was tireless. Even in his later years, his travel would take him all over the country and world to offer a voice of compassion,” Rev. James J. Greenfield, OSFS, Oblate provincial said. “His work in helping to found both the DeSales School of Theology and Courage were examples of his commitment to the Church that he loved so much.”
Fr. Harvey’s ministerial assignments following ordination included serving as a teacher at his alma mater, Northeast Catholic High School (1945-1947); graduate student at Catholic University (1947-1951); professor of moral theology at Dunbarton College, Washington, DC (1948-1973); professor of moral theology at the DeSales Hall School of Theology, (1949-1987); president of DeSales Hall School of Theology (1965-1977); and professor of sexual and medical ethics at DeSales University, Center Valley, PA (1987-2009). Father Harvey retired to Annecy Hall, Childs, Maryland in January, 2010.
Fr. Harvey was the founder and national director of Courage, which is a spiritual support group for homosexual women and men. He had been director of Courage since its foundation in 1980 at the request of the late archbishop of New York, Terrence Cardinal Cooke. Courage continues to reach out in the United States, in Canada, England, the Republic of Ireland, Poland, Mexico, Slovakia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, the Philippines, and New Zealand. Today, there are more than 100 Chapters of Courage worldwide.
Since he began teaching in higher education in 1948, Fr. Harvey has written more than 45 articles in professional theological and psychological journals on questions of human sexuality and counseling. He has addressed the full convention of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on ethics and psychology. He has been interviewed by national media representatives and has lectured abroad in South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, and Guam.
In addition to the members of his religious community, Fr. Harvey is survived by his sister, Margaret Smith, and many nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews. He is predeceased by his siblings, Catherine Egan and James Harvey.
Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday, December 31, at 11:15 AM, at St. Anthony of Padua Church, 9th and DuPont Streets, Wilmington, DE, 19805. Preceding the Mass will be a wake from 9:30 – 11:00 AM, and the interment will follow the Mass at the Oblate Cemetery, 1120 Blue Ball Road, Elkton, MD, 21921. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Oblate Retirement Fund, P.O. box 87, Childs, MD, 21916.
NOTE UPDATED FUNERAL ARRANGEMENTS
WAKE AND MASS TO BE HELD AT
ST. ANTHONY OF PADUA CHURCH,
Ninth and DuPont Streets, Wilmington, DE, 19805.
ALL AFRICA REPORT: President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf on Monday, December 27th, visited the ailing Catholic Archbishop Michael Francis to extend season's greetings.
The President thanked officials and staff for the love, concern and care Bishop Francis continues to receive.
She expressed delight at the physical appearance of the Bishop, and prayed that God would continue to provide the care and protection for him.
In response, The Most Reverend Lewis Jerome Zeigler, Co-Adjutor Archbishop of Monrovia, thanked the President for the concern she has demonstrated toward Archbishop Francis since he became ill more than five years ago.
The Bishop expressed satisfaction that God continues to demonstrate his love and care for the ailing Archbishop Francis.
In a related development, in keeping with the Christmas spirit of sharing, the Liberian leader on Thursday, December 23rd, visited the J. F. Kennedy Medical Center and the Redemption Hospital in New Kru Town, where she shared toys, food items and Christmas pleasantries with the children and other patients.According to an Executive Mansion release, the visit is one of several the President has paid on the Archbishop since his illness.
The President thanked staff of the two hospitals for the care they are providing, and urged them to continue to remain committed.
Several orphanages and other centers have also received Christmas gifts from the President, including the Monrovia Central Prison.
Kathmandu (AsiaNews) – Faced with a serious economic crisis, the Government of Nepal is trying to attract Christian tourists to the Himalayan nation, promoting it as a place of destination for Christmas and New Year holidays. For this reason, the authorities are protecting Christian places of worship from possible attacks by Hindu extremists. Local Catholics and Protestants were thus able to celebrate Christmas Mass and conduct processions in relative security. The increased volume of sales also pleased local businesses.
Prachandaman Shrestha, chairman of the Nepal Tourism Board, announced support and promotional packages for tourists who wish to visit the country at Christmas time.
“Our country is secular and people of any religion are welcome to Nepal,” Nepali Foreign Minister Sujata Koirala added. “This was not the case before but now we invite Christians from the world to come and celebrate Christmas here. Christian activities that do not harm the country are welcome in Nepal,” she said.
In 2007, Nepal became a secular state. The change came after ten years of civil war and centuries of Hindu monarchy. However, Christian and other minorities still survive on the margins of society.
Not only has the government banned apostolic work and proselytising, but in the recent years of political instability, Catholic and Protestant communities have often been the object of attacks from Hindu extremists.
Fr Robin Rai, a priest at Kathmandu’s Assumption cathedral, told AsiaNews, “In the 21st century, the state cannot ignore the presence of religious minorities and ban their activities. Circumstances have changed and Hindus are starting to accept and understand our faith.”
At the same time, Nepali business people and travel agencies have praised the government for its initiative. After being hard hit by the crisis, the national economy got a shot in the arm because of the great opportunities generated by Christmas.
For Rameshwor Tapa, who runs a gift shop near Assumption Cathedral, “one week of Christmas doubled sales for the whole year.”
The government’s action also created greater trust between the Christian minority and other religions. “In addition to Protestants and Catholics, I saw people from other religions buy Christmas gifts and exchange best wishes,” Mr Tapa said.
Cambodia is the symbolic country for the 2011 campaign and they want to draw attention especially to children with disabilities who live in the country to educate people to social problems. Cambodia still suffers the consequences of dictatorship and civil war. Malnutrition and lack of basic sanitation are the cause of many disabilities. In addition, there are still four to six million anti-personnel mines that kill or maim. “The children of Cambodia show us that you can play football with no legs and write with no hands,” said Msgr. Krämer, President of the German Mission of Childhood, which together with the Association of German Catholic Youth (BDKJ) is organizing the campaign. The children show that with a little support, despite a handicap, you can achieve almost anything. “Children are often an example and model, when even with great misfortune they are able to overcome certain situations,” said Msgr. Krämer. The campaign also aims to spread this message.
At the formal opening of the 53rd Campaign by the Star Singers to be held on 30 December in the diocese of Essen, approximately 1,500 girls and boys from various dioceses will participate. On 1 January 2011 there will be 22 Star Singers from the diocese of Mainz participating in the celebration presided over by Pope Benedict XVI in St Peter's Basilica. Three of them, wearing the traditional clothes of the Magi, will participate in the offertory procession. On 5 January, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will receive 108 Star Singers in her offices in Berlin. Four girls and boys from each of the 27 dioceses in Germany will represent their peers participating in the campaign.
Wearing clothes of the Magi, with their guiding star and their songs during the Christmas season and the beginning of the new year, the Star Singers will be knocking on the doors of German homes. About half a million children from 12,500 Catholic parishes in Germany will bring the blessing “C + M + B” (“mansionem benedicat Christus - Christ bless this house”) to families, collecting donations for their contemporaries who are suffering throughout the world. The gathering of German Star Singers has become the largest initiative of solidarity throughout the world, which sees children working for their contemporaries in need. (MS)
St. Thomas Becket
ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY AND MARTYR
Feast: December 29