March 16, 2006

Vatican Information Service Bulletin

The following, in it's entirety, is a copyrighted transcript of the Vatican Information Service.

SUMMARY:

- Monotheistic Religions: Cooperate in Justice and Peace
- Greek-Catholic Ukrainian Church: Bonded to Rome
- In Brief
- Audiences

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MONOTHEISTIC RELIGIONS: COOPERATE IN JUSTICE AND PEACE

 VATICAN CITY, MAR 16, 2006 (VIS) - This morning in the Vatican, Benedict XVI received a delegation from the American Jewish Committee, to whom he expressed the hope that "this meeting will further encourage your efforts to increase friendship between the Jewish people and the Catholic Church."

   The Pope then went on to refer to recent celebrations for the 40th anniversary of the Vatican Council II Declaration "Nostra Aetate," highlighting how it "increased our shared desire to know each other better and to develop a dialogue characterized by mutual respect and love."

   "Jews and Christians have a rich common patrimony," the Holy Father observed. "In many ways this distinguishes our relationship as unique among the religions of the world. The Church can never forget that chosen people with whom God entered into a holy covenant.

   "Judaism, Christianity and Islam believe in the one God, Creator of heaven and earth. It follows, therefore, that all three monotheistic religions are called to cooperate with one another for the common good of humanity, serving the cause of justice and peace in the world. This is especially important today when particular attention must be given to teaching respect for God, for religions and their symbols, and for holy sites and places of worship."

   The Pope concluded his brief address by recalling the fact that "religious leaders have a responsibility to work for reconciliation through genuine dialogue and acts of human solidarity. ... I pray that your visit today may confirm you in your endeavors to build bridges of understanding across all barriers."

 

GREEK-CATHOLIC UKRAINIAN CHURCH: BONDED TO ROME

 VATICAN CITY, MAR 16, 2006 (VIS) - Made public today was a Letter sent by the Pope to Cardinal Lubomyr Husar, major archbishop of Lviv of the Ukrainians, to mark "the sad events to which the cathedral of St. George at Leopoli was witness, in March of sixty years ago."

   In his Letter, dated February 22, Feast of the Chair of St. Peter, Benedict XVI recalls how in the cathedral in March 1946, "a group of prelates meeting in a pseudo-synod which took upon itself the right to represent the Church, made a serious attack against ecclesial unity. Violence against those who remained faithful to the Bishop of Rome intensified, giving rise to further suffering and forcing the Church to descend once again to the catacombs."

   Despite these trials, the Holy Father goes on, thanks to God "the Greek-Catholic Church did not disappear but continued to bear her own witness to the unity, sanctity catholicity and apostolicity of the Church of Christ."

   The Pope expresses the hope that this anniversary may stimulate the Greek-Catholic community in Ukraine "to strengthen its intimate and committed bond with Peter's Successor," and emphasizes how, "in the patient daily journey of faith, in communion with the successors of the Apostles, ... the Ukrainian Catholic community has managed to uphold Sacred Tradition in its integrity."

   He continues: "In order for this precious heritage of 'Paradosis' to survive in all its richness, it is important to guarantee the presence of the two great currents of the one Tradition - the Latin current and the Orthodox current - each with the multiplicity of historical characteristics that the Ukraine has been able to express."

   Benedict XVI closes his Letter with reference to "the dual mission entrusted to the Greek-Catholic Church in full communion with Peter. On the one hand, her task is to ensure the oriental tradition remains visible in the Catholic Church, on the other, to favor the encounter of the traditions, bearing witness not only to their compatibility, but also to their profound unity in diversity."

 

IN BRIEF

 AT 9.A.M. TOMORROW FRIDAY, MARCH 17, IN THE VATICAN'S "Redemptoris Mater" Chapel, the Lenten sermons will begin in the presence of the Pope. The theme of the meditations, due to be presented by Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, O.F.M. Cap., preacher of the papal household, is the Roman Canon "Memores beatae Passionis" ("Recalling the blessed Passion"). Among those invited to attend the sermons are cardinals, archbishops, bishops and prelates of the Roman Curia, the Vicariate of Rome and the Pontifical Family, as well as the superiors general of the orders that form part of the "Cappella Pontificia". The subsequent Lenten sermons will take place on March 31, and April 7.

 SERVANT OF GOD ELIA DI SAN CLEMENTE (nee Teodora Fracasso), virgin of the Order of Discalced Carmelites, will be beatified on Saturday, March 18, during a Eucharistic celebration due to be held at 6.30 p.m. in Bari cathedral, presided by Archbishop Francesco Cacucci of Bari - Bitonto. The future Blessed was born in the city of Bari in the Italian region of Puglia in 1901 and died in 1927. The decree concerning the miracle ascribed to her was promulgated in December 2005.

 

AUDIENCES

 VATICAN CITY, MAR 16, 2006 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Five prelates from the National Episcopal Conference of Cameroon, on their "ad limina" visit:

     - Cardinal Christian Wiyghan Tumi, archbishop of Douala.

     - Bishop Samuel Kleda of Batouri.

     - Bishop Jan Ozga of Doume-Abong' Mbang.

     - Bishop Eugeniusz Juretzko O.M.I., of Yokadouma.

     - Bishop Joseph Atanga S.J., of Bafoussam.

  - Bishop Paul Hinder O.F.M. Cap., apostolic vicar of Arabia.

  - Bishop Camillo Ballin M.C.C.I., apostolic vicar of Kuwait.

   This evening, he is scheduled to receive in separate audiences:

  - Cardinal Francis Arinze, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

  - Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

 

 

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