October 19, 2009

Vatican Information Service Bulletin

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

SUMMARY OF SYNOD OF BISHOPS: 17 - 19 OCTOBER

OTHER NEWS: 17 - 19 OCTOBER


SIXTEENTH GENERAL CONGREGATION

VATICAN CITY, 17 OCT 2009 (VIS) - The Sixteenth General Congregation of the Second Special Assembly for Africa of the Synod of Bishops was held this morning in the presence of the Holy Father. During the session, the draft of the final message was presented and discussed, and a first round of voting for members of the post-synodal council took place. The session was attended by 212 Synod Fathers, and the president delegate on duty was Cardinal Theodore-Adrien Sarr, archbishop of Dakar, Senegal.

  No General Congregation will be held this afternoon, or on Sunday and Monday. The relator general, the special secretaries and the realtors of the working groups (or language groups) will meet to unify the proposals presented by the Synod Fathers.

 

MUSIC CAN BECOME PRAYER

VATICAN CITY, 17 OCT 2009 (VIS) - This evening in the Paul VI Hall, the Holy Father attended a concert by the International Piano Academy of Imola, Italy, marking twenty years since its foundation. The Chinese pianist Jin Ju, using seven pianofortes from different historical periods, played pieces by Bach, Scarlatti, Mozart, Czerny, Beethoven, Chopin, Tchaikovsky and Liszt.

  At the end of the concert the Pope expressed his thanks to the academy and to the pianist, who "enabled us to savour ... the emotional impact of the music she played".

  "This concert has, once again, given us the chance to appreciate the beauty of music, a spiritual and therefore universal language, and hence the appropriate vehicle for understanding and union between individuals and peoples. Music forms part of all cultures and, we could say, accompanies all human experiences, from suffering to pleasure, from hatred to love, from sadness to joy, from death to life".

  Benedict XVI then highlighted how "over the centuries and the millennia music has always been used to give form to what cannot be expressed with words, because it arouses emotions otherwise difficult to communicate. It is, then, no coincidence that all civilisations have given importance and value to music in its various forms and expressions.

  "Music, great music", he added in conclusion, "distends the spirit, arouses profound emotions and almost naturally invites us to raise our minds and hearts to God in all situations of human existence, the joyful and the sad. Music can become prayer".

 

WORLD MISSION DAY: SOLIDARITY WITH YOUNG CHURCHES

VATICAN CITY, 18 OCT 2009 (VIS) - World Mission Day, which falls on the third Sunday of October, provided the theme for the Pope's remarks before praying the Angelus today.

  The Holy Father told the thousands of faithful gathered at noon in St. Peter's Square that today represents, "for all ecclesial communities and for each Christian, a powerful call to commit themselves to announcing and bearing witness to the Gospel to everyone, especially to people who do not yet know it".

  "It is the light of the Gospel that guides peoples on their journey and leads them towards the realisation of the one great family, in justice and peace, under the paternity of the one good and merciful God", he said. "The Church exists to announce this message of hope to all humankind which in our time 'has experienced marvellous achievements but which seems to have lost its sense of ultimate realities and of existence itself'".

  On this Sunday "the Universal Church places the spotlight on her own missionary vocation. Guided by the Holy Spirit she knows she is called to continue the work of Jesus Himself, announcing the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, which is 'righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit'. This Kingdom is already present in the world as a force for love, freedom, solidarity, and respect for the dignity of all mankind; and the ecclesial community feels in its heart the urgent need to work so the sovereignty of Christ may be fully achieved".

  Benedict XVI then went on to mention "the missionaries - priests, religious and lay volunteers - who consecrate their lives to taking the Gospel into the world, facing discomforts and difficulties, sometimes even full-on persecutions. My thoughts go out to, among others, Fr. Ruggero Ruvoletto, a 'fidei donum' priest killed recently in Brazil, and to Fr. Michael Sinnot, a religious kidnapped a few days ago in the Philippines. And how can we not think of what is emerging from the Synod of Bishops for Africa in terms of extreme sacrifice and love for Christ and for His Church?"

  The Pope then thanked the Pontifical Missionary Works for their service "in encouraging and educating missionaries". And he concluded: "I invite all Christians to make a gesture of material and spiritual support to help the young Churches in the poorest countries".

 

CHRISTIAN VALUES CONTINUE TO MOULD EUROPEAN CIVILISATION

VATICAN CITY, 19 OCT 2009 (VIS) - This morning the Holy Father received the Letters of Credence of Yves Gazzo, head of the delegation to the Holy See of the Commission of the European Communities.

  In his address, the Pope referred to the values of the European Union which, he said, "are the fruit of a long and complex history in which, it cannot be denied, Christianity has played a primordial role. The equal dignity of all human beings, the freedom of expression of faith as the basis of all other civil liberties, peace as a decisive element of the common good, human development (intellectual, social and economic) as a divine vocation and the sense of history deriving therefrom, are all central elements of the Christian revelation that continues to mould European civilisation".

  "When the Church mentions the Christian roots of Europe", the Holy Father went on, "she does not seek a privileged status for herself. She wishes to enact historical memory, first and foremost by recalling a truth which is suffering ever greater neglect: the decisively Christian inspiration of the founding fathers of the European Union". Furthermore, "she wishes to make it clear that the legacy of values comes chiefly from Christian heritage, which continues to nourish Europe today".

  "These values are not some anarchic or random assembly, rather they form a coherent whole which is historically ordered and regimented on the basis of a precise view of mankind".

  The Holy Father then went on to highlight the risk of such values being "manipulated by individuals and pressure groups who seek to make their particular interests prevail to the detriment of an ambitious collective project, which is what Europeans hope to see and which aims at the common good of all inhabitants of the continent, and of the whole world".

  "It is important", he went on, "that Europe does not allow her model of civilisation to fray, thread by thread. Her generosity must not be stifled by individualism or utilitarianism. The immense intellectual, cultural, economic riches of the continent will continue to bear fruit so long as they are nourished by a transcendental view of human beings, which is the greatest treasure of European heritage".

  "This mainly involves the search for a just and delicate balance between economic efficiency and social needs, the protection of the environment and, above all, the indispensable and necessary support for human life from conception to natural death, and for the family founded on marriage between a man and a woman".

  Europe will not truly be itself, said the Holy Father, "if she does not conserve the originality which constitutes her greatness and which tomorrow may make her one of the main players in promoting the integral development of peoples, something the Catholic Church considers as being the only possible way to remedy the imbalances of our world".

  Benedict XVI assured the new head of delegation that the Holy See "follows the activities of European institutions with great respect and attention, and hopes that, with their work and creativity, they may honour Europe which, more than a continent, is a 'spiritual home'".

  "The Church", he concluded, "wishes to 'accompany' the construction of European unity. For this reason she takes the liberty of recalling the fundamental and constituent values of European society, that they may be promoted for the good of everyone".

 

AUDIENCES

 VATICAN CITY, 19 OCT 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Archbishop Renzo Fratini, apostolic nuncio to Spain and to the Principality of Andorra, and permanent observer to the World Tourism Organisation.

 - Muammer Dogan Akdur, ambassador of Turkey, on his farewell visit.

 - Fausto Cordovez Chiriboga, ambassador of Ecuador, on his farewell visit.

 

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

VATICAN CITY, 19 OCT 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Fr. Paul D. Etienne of the clergy of the archdiocese of Indianapolis, U.S.A., vice rector of the Bishop Brute Seminary and pastor of the parish of St. Paul in Tell City, as bishop of Cheyenne (area 252,552 population 515,000, Catholics 52,203, priests 61, permanent deacons 20, religious 35), U.S.A. The bishop-elect was born in Tell City, U.S.A. in 1959 and ordained a priest in 1992.

  On Saturday 17 October it was made public that the Holy Father appointed as members of the Congregation for Bishops Cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, and Archbishop Raymond Leo Burke, prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura.

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