November 13, 2009

Vatican Information Service Bulletin

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

SUMMARY:


POPE RECEIVES HUNGARIAN PRIME MINISTER

VATICAN CITY, 13 NOV 2009 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office released the following communique at midday today:

  "This morning the Holy Father received in audience Gordon Bajnai, prime minister of the Republic of Hungary. The prime minister subsequently went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. who was accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

  "In the course of the cordial discussions - having recalled how the bilateral agreements signed over recent years have ratified reciprocal relations - attention turned to certain questions concerning the rapport between the ecclesial and civil communities, and the importance was underlined of continuing dialogue through the appropriate bodies. An exchange of opinions also took place on the current international situation, including the financial crisis in the light of 'Caritas in veritate', and mention was made of the Hungarian presidency of the European Union, due for the first six months of 2011".

 

COR UNUM: ANNOUNCING THE GOSPEL AND SERVING MANKIND

VATICAN CITY, 13 NOV 2009 (VIS) - Participants in the plenary assembly of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum", the president of which is Cardinal Paul Josef Cordes, were received in audience this morning by the Holy Father, who thanked them for their "valuable service to the charitable activities of the Church".

  In his address the Pope explained how the mission of "Cor Unum" involves "a constant tension between two poles: announcement of the Gospel and concern for the heart of man in the environments in which he lives". And he recalled how this year two ecclesial events had highlighted these aspects, "the publication of the Encyclical 'Caritas in vritate', and the celebration of the Special Assembly for Africa of the Synod of Bishops on reconciliation, justice and peace.

  "From different but converging points of view, these events underlined how the Church, in her announcement of salvation, cannot overlook the real living conditions of the human beings to whom she has been sent", the Holy Father added. "It was precisely through such an awareness that, over the centuries, many ecclesial structures and activities came into being with the aim of promoting individuals and peoples. They have made, and continue to make, an irreplaceable contribution to the growth and the harmonious and integral development of human beings".

  "It is in this light that we must consider the Church's commitment to the development of a more just society, one in which the rights of individuals and peoples are recognised and respected. ... It is certainly not the Church's task to intervene directly in the political life of States, but the Christian community cannot and must not remain at the margins when it comes to defending human rights and promoting justice".

  Benedict XVI went on: "Faith is a spiritual force that purifies reason in the search for a just [social] order, freeing it from the ever-present risk of being 'blinded' by egoism, by interest and by power. The truth is, as experience shows even in the most socially developed societies, that caritas remains necessary. The service of love is never superfluous because situations of suffering, solitude and need still persist, which require dedicated people and tangible aid".

  "Thus, anyone who serves within the ecclesial organisations that concern themselves with charitable initiatives and works cannot but have this main objective: bringing people to know and experience the merciful Face of the heavenly Father, because in the heart of God-Love is the true answer to the most intimate hopes of every human heart".

  "It is important that the Church, inserted into the events of history and of the life of man", the Pope concluded, "become a channel for the goodness and love of God".

 

 

THE CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY IN POST-MODERN SOCIETIES

VATICAN CITY, 13 NOV 2009 (VIS) - This morning in the Holy See Press Office, the presentation took place of the twenty-third general assembly of the International Federation of Catholic Universities (FIUC), on the theme: "The Catholic University in post-modern societies". The event is due to be held at Rome's Pontifical Gregorian University from 16 to 20 November.

  Participating in today's press conference were: Msgr. Angelo Vincenzo Zani, under secretary of the Congregation for Catholic Education; Msgr. Guy-Real Thivierge, secretary general of FIUC; Fr. Gianfranco Ghirlanda S.J., rector of the Gregorian University, and Pedro Nel Medina Varon, adjunct secretary general of FIUC.

  "This year", said Msgr. Zani, "marks the sixtieth anniversary of the canonical recognition of the statutes of FIUC by the Holy See". The organisation, he went on, "made a particularly significant contribution to the preparation of the Apostolic Constitution 'Ex corde Ecclesiae'", which was approved by John Paul II in 1990 and explains the essential characteristics a Catholic university must have "in order to guarantee a Christian presence in the academic world, in the face of the great problems of society and culture".

  For his part, Msgr. Thivierge outlined some of the themes due to be discussed during the forthcoming assembly: the Catholic University in dialogue with cultures and religions; the Catholic University and Christian intellectual tradition; the political and social responsibility of the Catholic University; and the Catholic University and the future.

  Fr. Ghirlanda highlighted how "the search for truth is a constituent element of man's nature, and of his dignity and vocation, and the Church must offer the means for the truth to be discovered by everyone who seeks it. ... This is why the mission of Catholic universities is not only aimed at the Catholic faithful - in many of them, in fact, Catholic students are a small minority - but to all men and women who wish to receive an integral education for the development of a free and responsible personality".

  Pedro Nel Medina Varon, recalled how, of the 1210 Catholic universities and institutions of higher education in the world, FIUC "brings together 207, from 56 countries".

  "We in the Federation consider Catholic Universities as having three main responsibilities: preserving the Catholic intellectual tradition"; in other words, "the reflection that the Christian community has been developing for the last two thousand years concerning the most profound questions about life and the human condition, as well as the beliefs and values transmitted by the Gospel".

  The second responsibility "is the integral education of the person", and the third is "service to the Church, ... and the preservation of the Catholic intellectual tradition through the integral education of the person".

  The adjunct secretary general of FIUC concluded his remarks with a question addressed to the Catholic universities of the world: "Can our universities be, apart from all this, privileged places where academics and intellectuals can meet with political leaders committed to the good of the world and to social justice? With this question I hope to offer food for thought to the Catholic universities that have still not joined our federation".

 

AUDIENCES

VATICAN CITY, 13 NOV 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences three prelates from the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil, on their "ad limina" visit:

    - Archbishop Bruno Gamberini of Campinas.

    - Bishop Luiz Gonzaga Bergonzini of Guarulhos.

     - Bishop Fernando Antonio Figueiredo O.F.M. of Santo Amaro.

   This evening he is scheduled to receive in audience Cardinal William Joseph Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

 

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

 VATICAN CITY, 13 NOV 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father gave his assent to the canonical election by the Synod of Bishops of the Chaldean Church of Fr. Emil Shimoun Nona of the clergy of the eparchy of Alqosh, Iraq, vicar general and professor of anthropology at Babel College, as archbishop of Mossul of the Chaldeans (Catholics 18,200, priests 16, permanent deacons 1, religious 10), Iraq. The archbishop-elect was born in Alqosh in 1967 and ordained a priest in 1991.

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