May 19, 2005

Vatican Information Service Bulletin - 05-19-05

The following is a copyrighted release of the Vatican Information Service.

- FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF LATIN AMERICAN EPISCOPAL COUNCIL
- VATICAN RADIO MONITORED FOR ELECTROMAGNETIC EMISSIONS
- BENEDICT XVI WELCOMES NEW AMBASSADOR FROM MACEDONIA
- JUSTICE AND PEACE COUNCIL HOLDS SEMINAR ON PEACE, LITURGY
- AUDIENCES
- OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS 

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FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF LATIN AMERICAN EPISCOPAL COUNCIL

VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father sent a Message to Cardinal Francisco Javier Errazuriz Ossa, archbishop of Santiago de Chile and president of the Latin American Episcopal Council (CELAM), on the occasion of its 30th plenary assembly which is being held in Lima, Peru from May 17 to 20.

In his Message, which is dated May 14 and was made public yesterday afternoon, Benedict XVI recalls that CELAM was founded by Pope Pius XII 50 years ago "with the aim of supporting the pastoral work of bishops and, at the same time, of responding to some of the grave problems of the Church in Latin America."

The Pope affirms that over this half century, CELAM has helped "to face up to the challenges of the Latin American subcontinent with harmonized efforts and ecclesial spirit, ... and to invigorate what over the years has become known as the 'new evangelization'."

After highlighting that, from the beginning, CELAM has given particular support to "the promotion of vocations, in order that they be many and holy," Benedict XVI writes that, with a view to the future, CELAM "must continue to make an important contribution and provide strong support in this field, teaching how to discover the signs of the call and to accompany the response."

The Holy Father invites members of the episcopal council to reflect on the pastoral care of the family which, in our time, "is beset by grave challenges represented by the various ideologies and customs that undermine the very foundations of Christian marriage and family. Particular emphasis must be laid on family catechesis and on the promotion of a positive and correct view of marriage and conjugal morality, thus contributing to the formation of truly Christian families, that stand out for their practice of Gospel values. A Christian family, a true 'domestic church', will also be the seedbed for numerous holy vocations."

At the end of his Message, the Pope suggests that, "in aiming to promote collaboration both among bishops and of bishops with the Holy See, thus encouraging the growth of 'affectus collegialis,' CELAM should foster a spirit of communion, of mutual charity in the internal life of the Church. In the exercise of pastoral care, that unity must shine forth in charity between pastors, between them and people consecrated to the religious life, and between people who live their consecration within the particular charism of their community. All this should be done while bearing in mind the model of our Savior, Who came into the world not be served but to serve."

 

VATICAN RADIO MONITORED FOR ELECTROMAGNETIC EMISSIONS

VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2005 (VIS) - Yesterday afternoon a joint communique was released from the bilateral commission between the Holy See and Italy studying the question of the quantity of electromagnetic smog allegedly emitted by Vatican Radio at its transmitting station outside of Rome at Santa Maria di Galeria. The commission had met on May 16 to seek a solution linked to the problems of the intensity of these emissions.

  The communique stated that "the commission examined the results of the measuring done in recent months by Italian experts of the National Agency for the Protection of the Environment, by the regional agency for Lazio and by the Ministry of Communications, and ascertained that, in all sites observed, the levels of emission were maintained in conformity with the quality control objectives indicated by the DPCM (Decree of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers) of July 8, 2003, and thus the continuation of commitments reciprocally assumed with the Accord of June 8, 2001."

The monitoring of emissions will continue and new tests will be done in September and October. As to a definitive solution to the problem of the intensity of electromagnetic waves produced at the Santa Maria installation, the commission noted with pleasure the work underway to adapt or convert several of the radio's medium and short wave transmitters to terrestrial digital technology which, once finished, would allow Vatican Radio to broadcast its programs with a lower emission power and with a better broadcast quality.

 

BENEDICT XVI WELCOMES NEW AMBASSADOR FROM MACEDONIA

VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2005 (VIS) - Pope Benedict today received the Letters of Credence of Bartolomej Kajtazi and welcomed him as the new ambassador to the Holy See from the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Macedonia, said the Pope, by "reaffirming its commitment to forge a path of peace and reconciliation, ... can become an example to others in the Balkan region. Tragically, cultural differences have often been a source of misunderstanding between peoples and even the cause of senseless conflicts and wars. In fact, dialogue between cultures is an indispensable building stone of the universal civilization of love for which every man and woman longs."

The Holy Father noted that the country is pursuing "a goal of social integration" which brings it "closer to the rest of Europe. ... As my beloved predecessor said on a number of occasions: Europe needs the Balkan nations, and they need Europe! Entry into the European Community should not, however, be understood merely as a panacea to overcome economic adversity. ... The process of the European Union's expansion ... 'will lack substance if it is reduced to merely geographic and economic dimensions'. Rather, the union must 'consist above all in an agreement about values which ... finds expression in its law and in its life'. This rightly demands of each state a proper ordering of society that creatively reclaims the soul of Europe, acquired through the decisive contribution of Christianity, affirming the transcendent dignity of the human person and the values of reason, freedom, democracy and the constitutional state."

Turning to authentic development, Benedict XVI said this "requires a coordinated national plan of progress which honors the legitimate aspirations of all sectors of society and to which political and civic leaders can be held accountable." Programs "must be based on the protection of human rights including those of ethnic and religious minorities, the practice of responsible and transparent governance, and the maintenance of law and order by an impartial judiciary system and an honorable police force."

The Pope spoke of the importance of presenting young generations with "a vision of confidence and optimism" and hope for the future through "the creation of educational opportunities," especially schools "staffed by people of personal integrity. ... Integral to such formation is religious instruction."

He concluded his remarks by noting that "the Catholic Church in your nation, though numerically small, desires to reach out in co-operation with other religious communities to all members of Macedonian society without distinction. ... I am confident that the Church is willing to contribute even more extensively to the country's human development programs, promoting the values of peace, justice, solidarity and freedom."

 

JUSTICE AND PEACE COUNCIL HOLDS SEMINAR ON PEACE, LITURGY

VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2005 (VIS) - The Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, in collaboration with St. Anselm Pontifical Athenaeum, has organized a two-day study seminar on "Peace and Liturgy: A Research Program," whose aim is to study more deeply the pastoral and cultural instruments and methods to make liturgical life more closely linked to the social and political commitment for peace. The meeting starts today in the council's San Calisto offices.

This follows the one-day seminar yesterday at council headquarters on the social doctrine of the Church as an indispensable basis for the formation and commitment of the lay Christian.

 

AUDIENCES

VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

- Archbishop Franc Rode C.M., emeritus of Ljubljana, Slovenia and prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life.

- Four prelates from the Conference of Catholic bishops of Rwanda, on their "ad limina" visit:

- Bishop Augustin Misago of Gikongoro.

- Bishop Frederic Rubwejanga of Kibungo.

- Bishop Alexis Habiyambere S.J., of Nyundo.

- Bishop Kizito Bahujimihigo of Ruhengeri.

- Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz of the archdiocese of the Mother of God in Moscow, Russia.

This afternoon, the Holy Father is scheduled to confer a decoration on his brother, Msgr. Georg Ratzinger. Later he is due to attend a screening of the film: "Karol un uomo diventato Papa" (Karol, A Man Who Became Pope) in the Paul VI Hall.

 

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2005 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed:

 - Bishop Ramon del Hoyo Lopez of Cuenca, Spain, as bishop of Jaen (area 13,497, population 651,565, Catholics 630,000, priests 308, religious 717), Spain.

 - As members of the Administration of the Patrimony of the Apostolic See, Cardinals Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, and Jean-Louis Tauran, archivist and librarian of Holy Roman Church.

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