June 6, 2012

Vatican Information Service Bulletin

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

Summary

- WORLD MEETING IN MILAN: AN EPIPHANY OF THE FAMILY

- PAPAL MESSAGE FOR THE DIAMOND JUBILEE OF ELIZABETH II

- OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

- NOTICE

 

WORLD MEETING IN MILAN: AN EPIPHANY OF THE FAMILY

Vatican City, 6 June 2012 (VIS) - Benedict XVI focused his catechesis during this morning's general audience on his recent trip to Milan, his first pastoral trip as Peter's Successor to that Italian archdiocese where he had participated in the seventh World Meeting of Families.

The Holy Father recalled the first stage of his journey, which had taken him to Piazza del Duomo, heart and symbol of Milan, where he had exhorted the hundreds of thousands gathered to greet him "to live the faith as part of their individual and community experience, their private and public life, so as to create a stable and authentic 'well being' on the basis of the family, which must be rediscovered as mankind's most important heritage".

That evening the Holy Father had attended a concert at the La Scala opera house, in which "the notes of Beethoven's ninth symphony expressed that aspiration to universality and fraternity which the Church tirelessly seeks by announcing the Gospel; a fraternity which bursts forth in the famous 'Hymn to Joy'". At the end of the concert, he said, "I spoke of the contrast between this ideal and the dramatic events of history, and of the need for a God Who is near, Who shares our sufferings, as my thoughts went to so many of our brothers and sisters who are suffering because of the earthquake". Benedict XVI also recalled how he had spoken of the family in the third millennium. "It is in families that we first experience how human beings are not created to live closed in themselves, but in relation with others. It is in the family that the light of peace begins to burn in people's hearts, so as to illuminate our world".

On Saturday, addressing priests, religious, seminarians and Church leaders in the cathedral of Milan, the Pope had reaffirmed "the importance of celibacy and consecrated virginity, which was to dear to the great St. Ambrose. ... These are a luminous sign of love for God and for our brothers and sisters, founded on an increasingly intimate relationship with Christ in prayer and expressed in the total gift of self".

Benedict XVI then went on to recall how, in the stadium of San Siro, he had invited young people who had recently received or were about to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation "to say their free and responsible 'yes' to the Gospel of Jesus, and to welcome the gifts of the Holy Spirit which mould them as Christians and enable them to live the Gospel and to be active members of the community".

During his meeting with representatives of government, industry and the world of culture, the Pope had emphasised the fact that "the legislation and activities of State institutions must always be at the service of individuals, safeguarding them in all aspects, beginning with the right to life which must never be deliberately suppressed, and reconsigning the specific identity of the family founded on marriage between a man and a woman".

At the "Celebration of Witnesses" in Milan's Bresso Park the Holy Father had responded to questions put to him by a number of families. "I wanted to provide a sign of the open dialogue that exists between families and the Church, between the world and the Church", he said to the faithful at his general audience. "I was greatly struck by the moving testimonies of couples and children from different continents on the important issues of our day: the economic crisis, the difficulty in reconciling work and family, the spread of separation and divorce, and existential questions which touch adults, young people and children alike. I wish to recall what I have often said in the past in defence of family time, which is threatened by the imposition of work-related commitments. Sunday is the day of the Lord, the day of man, a day in which everyone must be free, free for the family and free for God. By defending Sunday we defend man's freedom".

At Mass on Sunday 3 June for the close of the seventh World Meeting of Families, also celebrated in Bresso Park which "was transformed into a kind of open-air cathedral", Benedict XVI had launched a "call to build ecclesial communities increasingly similar to families, capable of reflecting the beauty of the Blessed Trinity and of evangelising not just with the word but by irradiation, with the power of a love that is lived, because love is the only power that can transform the world".

More than one million people had attended the gathering in Milan meeting which was, the Holy Father concluded, "an 'epiphany' of the family. Families were present in their many different forms, but also in that unicity which is their fundamental identity: a communion of love founded upon marriage and called to be a shrine of life, a small Church, a cell of society. A message of hope went out from Milan to the whole world, a message backed up by real experience that it is possible and joyful, though demanding, to experience a faithful love 'forever', open to life; it is possible to participate as families in the mission of the Church and in the construction of society. ... May the experience of Milan bring abundant fruits to the Church and favour increased attention to the cause of the family, which is the cause of man and of civilisation".

 

PAPAL MESSAGE FOR THE DIAMOND JUBILEE OF ELIZABETH II

Vatican City, 6 June 2012 (VIS) - Made public today was a message sent by the Holy Father to Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom who is currently celebrating her Diamond Jubilee (sixty years since she became monarch). The English-language text bears the date of 23 May.

"I write to offer my warmest congratulations to Your Majesty on the happy occasion of the Diamond Jubilee of your reign. During the past sixty years you have offered to your subjects and to the whole world an inspiring example of dedication to duty and a commitment to maintaining the principles of freedom, justice and democracy, in keeping with a noble vision of the role of a Christian monarch.

"I retain warm memories of the gracious welcome accorded to me by Your Majesty at Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh at the beginning of my apostolic visit to the United Kingdom in September 2010, and I renew my thanks for the hospitality that I received throughout those four days. Your personal commitment to cooperation and mutual respect between the followers of different religious traditions has contributed in no small measure to improving ecumenical and inter-religious relations throughout your realms.

"Commending Your Majesty and all the royal family to the protection of Almighty God, I renew my heartfelt good wishes on this joyful occasion and I assure you of my prayers for your continuing health and prosperity".

 

OTHER PONTIFICAL ACTS

Vatican City, 6 June 2012 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

- Appointed Fr. Jose Gilson O.F.M. Cap., definitor general of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchins in Rome, as bishop of Erexim (area 5,586, population 211,685, Catholics 168,800, priests 64, permanent deacons 15, religious 133), Brazil. The bishop-elect was born in Ibirama, Brazil in 1957 and ordained a priest in 1988. He has held a number of offices in his order including master of postulants, bursar and minister provincial of Curitiba. He has also worked as professor of ecclesiastical history at the "Studium Theologicum" of Curitiba. He succeeds Bishop Gironimo Zanandrea, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.

- Appointed Archbishop Julio Murat, apostolic nuncio to Zambia, also as apostolic nuncio to Malawi.

 

NOTICE

Vatican City, 6 June 2012 (VIS) - No VIS bulletin will be transmitted tomorrow, Solemnity of Corpus Christi and a holiday in the Vatican. Service will resume on Friday 8 June.

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