December 15, 2014

Vatican Information Service Bulletin

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

Summary

- Audience with Dragan Covic: the importance of the Catholic contribution to the reconstruction of Bosnia Herzegovina

- To Catholic television workers: avoid the sins of the media

- Pope Francis visits the Roman parish of San Giuseppe all'Aurelio

- Angelus: rediscover the true joy of Jesus Christ

- The Pope gives a prayerbook to the faithful

- Audience with Matteo Renzi: common concern about persistent social and economic problems

- St. Lucy, patroness of the blind and visually-impaired, teaches us the secret of true happiness

- Francis gives thanks to the foundation of Notre Dame des Sans-Abri for its work with the homeless

- The Pope prays to the Virgin of Guadalupe that the future of Latin America be forged for the poor

- “I received my first ecumenical sermon from my grandmother, in front of you”, says the Pope to the Salvation Army

- Cardinal Turkson to travel to Sierra Leone and Liberia to bring the solidarity of the Church to two of the countries hardest hit by the Ebola virus

- Audiences

- Other Pontifical Acts

Audience with Dragan Covic: the importance of the Catholic contribution to the reconstruction of Bosnia Herzegovina

Vatican City, 15 December 2014 (VIS) – This morning in the Vatican Apostolic Palace the Holy Father received in audience Dragan Covic, Croatian member of the Collegial Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, who subsequently met with Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

During the cordial discussions, the Parties focused on the situation in the country, with particular reference to the contribution of Catholics to the edification of society and especially their commitment in the field of reconstruction following the devastation caused by floods last spring. Satisfaction was expressed regarding the good bilateral relations, and several issues were discussed in relation to the application of the 2006 Basic Agreement, which governs the relationships and collaboration between the Church and the State for the common good.

Finally, various themes relating to regional and international politics were considered.

To Catholic television workers: avoid the sins of the media

Vatican City, 15 December 2014 (VIS) – This morning Pope Francis met with the managers and workers of TV2000, an Italian Church television broadcasting company, with whom he wished to share “three thoughts on the role of the communicator”, recalling that “the Catholic media have a very difficult mission in relation to social communication: seeking to preserve it from all that distorts and twists it for other purposes. Often communication is subject to propaganda, ideologies, political ends, or for the control of the economy or technology. The first thing that is beneficial to communication is parrhesia, or rather the courage to speak directly, to speak frankly and freely. … If, instead, we are worried about tactical aspects, our words become artificial, and we communicate nothing. Freedom also means freedom from fashions, clichés, pre-packaged formulas. … We must reawaken words. But every word has a spark of fire and life within. Reawaken that spark, so that it comes out. So this is the first task of the communicator: to reawaken the word”.

Secondly, he emphasised the need to avoid “filling” and “closing”; the first takes the form of “saturating our perceptions with an excess of slogans that annul our thoughts instead of setting them into motion”, whereas the second is that of seeking short cuts instead of favouring longer and more complex routes of understanding, “choosing to present an individual as if he or she could solve all our problems, or on the contrary, as a scapegoat onto whom we can discharge all our responsibilities. [It is] jumping to conclusions immediately, instead of making the effort to represent the complexity of real life”.

Finally, Francis mentioned the third mission, “speaking to the whole person … avoiding the sins of the media: disinformation, slander and defamation”. Authentic communication, he stressed, “is not concerned with attention-grabbing. … It is necessary to speak to people as a whole: to their mind and their heart, so that they know how to see beyond the immediate, beyond a present that risks being forgetful and fearful of the future”. Of these three sins, “the most insidious is disinformation, as it leads to mistakes and to believing only a part of the truth”.

These three tasks bring to life “the culture of encounter, so necessary in an increasingly pluralistic context. Confrontation does not lead anywhere”, he concluded. “Creating a culture of encounter: it is an important job for you”.

Pope Francis visits the Roman parish of San Giuseppe all'Aurelio

Vatican City, 14 December 2014 (VIS) – This afternoon Pope Francis visited the Roman parish of San Giuseppe all'Aurelio, in the Primavalle suburb of the capital. Before celebrating the Eucharist, Francis met with various groups of people and spoke informally with them.

First, he met with some children who were preparing for their First Communion, and spoke about his own, which took place on 8 October 1944. “I remember it as if it were today. I prepared for a year with a very kind nun and two catechists. … In those times, its was not possible to drink a little water before Mass, nothing – not even a drop of water. It was Pope Pius XII who saved us from this dictatorship! … And we all arrived in the Church with our hands together, singing. … And later, in the afternoon, we returned to the Church for our Confirmation: the same day. And you, who will take your first Communion, will remember that day for ever, all your life: the first day Jesus came to you. He comes, He makes Himself one with us, he nourishes us to give us strength. … Do not forget the date, and every year, on that day, confess and take communion, will you?”

He then spoke to the Rom families in the parish, wishing them peace within their families and adding, “May there be work, and may there be joy. The joy of Jesus, the peace of Jesus, and so on. Do not lose hope in difficult moments, as hope never disappoints: the Lord gives it to us. And the Lord, sooner or later, He always awaits us, always”.

The Holy Father then met with the sick, and began by thanking them for their witness of patience, of love for God and of hope in the Lord. “This does great good to the Church”, he affirmed. “You continually nurture the Church with your life, with your suffering, with your patience. Thank you, truly. The Church, without the sick, would not carry on. You are the strength of the Church, her true strength”.

Finally, he encountered newly baptised children with their parents. “A child always offers a word of hope simply by being. … A child is a seed of the future. …. And you, parents, will say to God, protect my child in the future. Our hopes reside in our children. We hand them the torch of faith and life, and they will pass it on to their children, our grandchildren. This is life. And in Baptism, you have given them faith, and thus faith from Jesus' time up to the present day is like a chain, transmitted by parents. And this is a real responsibility! Never forget the day of your Baptism”.

Finally, after revealing that he was baptised on 25 December, just eight days after his birth, as was the custom at the time, Francis asked all those present to pray for him, and added, “babies and children cry, they make noise, they run about … and it bothers me greatly when a child cries in church and people expect him or her to leave. No! It is the best sermon. The cry of a child is the voice of God. Never, ever send them out of the church!”

Following his meetings with the parishioners, Pope Francis confessed several people and then celebrated Mass. In his homily, he mentioned that “the Church this Sunday anticipates the joy of the Nativity, and it is therefore called 'Gaudete Sunday', joyful Sunday”. The joy of the Nativity, he said, is a special joy the the Christian experiences not only on that day, but throughout all his or her life. “It is a serene, calm joy, a joy that always accompanies a Christian. Even in difficult moments, this joy is transformed into peace. The true Christian never loses this peace, even during suffering. This peace is a gift from the Lord”.

Francis emphasised that we encounter Christian joy in prayer and in giving thanks to God, and he spoke about all those people who do not know how to thank God and who are always looking for something to complain about. “A Christian cannot live like this, always complaining. … No saint has ever had a sad face. The saints always had joyful faces. Or at least, in moments of suffering, their faces showed peace”. In this way, the Pontiff explained that in order to obtain this Christian joy, which is not the joy of consumerism on 24 December, first one must pray and give thanks – but then there exists a further dimension, which is bringing the glad tidings to others. “Go to others, those who are in need, both materially and spiritually. They are many people who suffer and are distraught as a result of family problems. Bring them peace, the anointing of Jesus, the oil of Jesus which does so much good and consoles the soul”.

Angelus: rediscover the true joy of Jesus Christ

Vatican City, 14 December 2014 (VIS) – Today, the third Sunday of Advent, known as the “Sunday of Joy” (Gaudete), Pope Francis appeared at the window of his study to pray the Angelus with the faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square, including many children who had brought their figurines of the baby Jesus from their Nativity displays, to be blessed by the Holy Father.

Francis remarked that the time of Advent, which began two weeks ago, invites us to spiritual vigilance to prepare the way for the Lord who is on his way. “On this third Sunday the liturgy proposes to us another inner attitude with which to await the Lord: joy. Man's heart desires joy. We all wish for joy, every family, every population aspires to happiness. But what is the joy that the Christian is required to live and to bear witness to? It is that which comes from closeness to God, from His presence in our life. Ever since Jesus entered into history, with his birth in Bethlehem, humanity has received the germ of the Kingdom of God, like the terrain that receives the seed, the promise of a future harvest. There is no need to search elsewhere! Jesus has come to bring joy to all for ever. It is not merely a hoped-for joy, or a joy postponed to paradise: here on earth we are sad but in paradise we will be joyful. No! It is not this, but rather it is a joy that is already real and that can be experienced now, because Jesus Himself is our joy, and with Jesus our home is joyful”.

“We baptised sons and daughters of the Church, all of us, are called upon to always welcome newly the presence of God among us and to help others to discover this presence, or to rediscover it if they have forgotten. It is a beautiful mission, similar to that of John the Baptist: guiding people towards Jesus – not to ourselves! – because it is towards Him that the human heart tends when it seeks joy and happiness”.

“St. Paul, in today's liturgy, indicates the conditions for being missionaries of joy: pray diligently, always give thanks to God, follow His Spirit, seek that which is good and avoid evil”, continued the Pope. “If this is our way of life, then the Good News will be able to enter into many homes and to help people and families rediscover that in Jesus, there is salvation. In Him it is possible to find inner peace and the strength to face each day the different situations of life, even the most onerous and difficult. We never hear about a sad saint or a saint with a gloomy appearance. It would be contradictory. A Christian is a person whose heart is filled with peace because he or she knows to place joy in the Lord even when experiencing difficult moments in life. To have faith does not mean not having difficult moments, but rather having the strength to face them knowing that we are not alone. And this is the peace God gives to His sons and daughters”.

The Pope gives a prayerbook to the faithful

Vatican City, 14 December 2014 (VIS) – After today's Angelus prayer, Pope Francis greeted all those present in St. Peter's Square – families, parish groups, associations and, in particular, faithful from Poland where today the Christmas candle is lit, and commitment to solidarity is reaffirmed, especially in the current Polish “Year of Caritas”.

He then addressed the children who had brought him the figures from their Nativity displays to be blessed, thanking them for their presence and for the joy they brought to the square, where a sign was held that read “With Jesus, there is joy in our home”. The Pope wished them a happy Christmas and asked them to pray for him in front of their Nativity display at home, as he does for them.

“Prayer is the breath of the soul: it is important to find moments during the day to open our heart to God, even with the simple and short prayers of the Christian people. Therefore, I thought of giving a gift to all of you here in the square – a surprise, a gift: I will give you a little pocket-sized book that gathers together a few prayers, for various moments in the day and different situations in life. Some volunteers will distribute to them to you. Take one each and keep it with you always, as a help to live the whole day with God, and so we do not forget that beautiful message you have brought here on your banner: 'With Jesus, there is joy in our home'. Once again: 'With Jesus, there is joy in our home'”.

The book offered by the Pope contains Psalms, the Magnificat, invocations of Mary, the Gloria, the prayer to the Angel of the Guard, prayers to recite during the day and blessings for the table, in confession and for specific intentions. It is published in Italian by the Vatican Publishing House.

Audience with Matteo Renzi: common concern about persistent social and economic problems

Vatican City, 13 December 2014 (VIS) – This morning the Holy Father Francis received Matteo Renzi, prime minister of the Italian Republic, on an official visit. Following the papal audience, Renzi met with Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, Secretary for Relations with States.

The discussions took place in a serene and cordial atmosphere. Attention focused on, among other issues, the current context of persistent difficulties of an economic and social nature, with negative consequences especially in relation to youth employment. In addition, the importance of education to promote the future of new generations was emphasised.

Various themes relating to international politics were then considered, and the Parties shared their serious concerns for the gradual worsening of conflicts in the Middle East.

With regard to the term of the Italian Presidency of the European Union, the Parties affirmed the importance of the themes mentioned by the Holy Father during his recent address to the European Parliament in Strasbourg. These were held to be fundamental to the harmonious development of European peoples.

Finally, the Parties renewed their commitment to continuing their joint cooperation to resolve various issues of a bilateral nature.

St. Lucy, patroness of the blind and visually-impaired, teaches us the secret of true happiness

Vatican City, 15 December 2014 (VIS) – “Your association is non-confessional; however you have proposed to meet on this specific day, confirming that the tradition retains a certain significance for you”, said the Pope as he received in audience the members of the National Council of the Italian Union of the Blind and Visually-Impaired, on the feast day of St. Lucy. Francis spoke about the human values the saint suggests, the first of which was courage. “We all need courage in order to face the challenges of life. … In particular, the blind and visually-impaired need courage in order not to close themselves up, not to assume a victim mentality, but rather to open themselves to reality, to others, to society; to learn how to recognise and make good use of the capabilities the Lord has given to each person, without exception”.

Another value suggested by St. Lucy, he continued, is “the fact that she was not alone, but rather was part of a community, a member of a body of which Christ was the head, a stone in the edifice of which Christ was the foundation. … An association is not the sum of the individuals that constitute it – it is much more. … To form a group, to be united, to meet up with one another, to share experiences and pool resources … all this is part of the civil patrimony of a group. And often people who live with disadvantages or disabilities can show everyone, with their experience, that we are not 'monads', we are not made to be isolated, but rather to relate to one another, to complete each other, to help, accompany and support each other”.

“Finally, St. Lucy tells us the life is made to be given away. She lived this in the extreme form of martyrdom, but the value of giving oneself is universal: it is the secret to true happiness. Humanity cannot be fully realised in having or even in doing; it is realised in loving, that is, the giving of oneself. And this may be understood as the secret of the name 'Lucy': a person is luminous to the extent that he or she is a gift for others. And every person, in reality, is a precious gift”. The Pope concluded by remarking that even today living according to these values can mean encountering incomprehension and the struggle of at times going against the grain, and that it is necessary to fight, with the example and intercession of St. Lucy. He encouraged those present to confront this challenge with courage and with the joy of doing so together.

Francis gives thanks to the foundation of Notre Dame des Sans-Abri for its work with the homeless

Vatican City, 13 December 2014 (VIS) – “Notre Dame des Sans-Abri (Our Lady of the Homeless)! What a beautiful name! The mother of Jesus, who gives shelter to her sons”, said Pope Francis this morning as he received in audience the Foyer de Notre Dame des Sans-Abri, the association founded in Lyon in 1952 by Gabriel Rosset to assist the thousands of homeless men, women and children who lived under bridges, or in unsanitary and overcrowded huts.

“I would like you to know how much I appreciate your commitment to the poorest, to those who society turns away, those who have no roof over their heads or food to eat, those who are without work and therefore without dignity. Your founder listened to the cry of the poor; he was moved by the suffering of others, and responded generously. This call is none other than the call of the suffering Christ Himself; in the people you serve, you touch their wounds and cure them; and at the same time, they offer you profound teaching, since through them you encounter Jesus. The poor always evangelise us, they communicate God's wisdom to us, mysteriously. Today's world urgently needs this witness of divine mercy. At a time in which the human being is frequently rejected as useless when no longer productive, God, on the other hand, always acknowledges the dignity and nobility of his beloved son and daughter, who has a privileged position in His heart. The poor are the Lord's most favoured, and are at the centre of the Gospel”.

“I thank you for this witness of mercy that you offer with many concrete actions, simple and warm gestures through which you alleviate the misery people suffer, giving them new hope and restoring their dignity to them. There is no better way to announce to today's world the joy of the Gospel. The option for the last among us, for those society rejects and casts aside, is a sign that we can always give, a sign that effectively bears witness to Christ, Who died and rose again”.

Finally, Pope Francs invited the members of the foundation to remain faithful to their name, recalling the Marian dimension of their work. “Mary's heart is full of compassion for all people, especially for the poorest and most disadvantaged, those who are most in need; and it is her maternal tenderness – along with that of the Church – that is made manifest through you”.

The Pope prays to the Virgin of Guadalupe that the future of Latin America be forged for the poor

Vatican City, 13 December 2014 (VIS) – Yesterday afternoon, on the liturgical solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Guadalupe, patroness of Latin America, the Holy Father celebrated Mass in the Vatican Basilica. The celebration was accompanied by hymns from the “Misa Criolla”, by the Argentine composer Ariel Ramirez. Extensive extracts from the homily pronounced by the Pontiff are published below:

“Today, with gratitude and joy, the peoples and nations of our great Latin American homeland commemorate the feast of their 'patroness', Our Lady of Guadalupe, whose devotion extends from Alaska to Patagonia. … On this feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe … we sing with her the 'Magnificat', we entrust to her the lives of our people and the continental mission of the Church. When she appeared to St. Juan Diego in Tepeyac … this led to a new visitation. She tenderly hastened to embrace the new people of the Americas at the dramatic moment they came into being: 'A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet' that assumed within herself the cultural and religious symbolism of the native people, announcing her Son and giving Him to the new and suffering people of mixed race. … The most perfect disciple of the Lord became the 'great missionary who brings the Gospel to our America'. The Son of Mary most Holy, his Immaculate Mother, reveals himself from the origins of this new peoples’ history, as the 'true God who gives us Life'”.

“The Holy Mother of God not only visited these people, but she chose to remain with them. … By her intercession, the Christian faithful started to become the richest treasure of the soul of the American people, whose precious pearl is Jesus Christ. It is a patrimony which is transmitted and manifest today in the many baptism of multitudes of people, in the faith, hope and charity of many; in precious popular piety; and in that popular ethos that reveals itself in an awareness of human dignity, in the passion for justice, in solidarity with the poorest and suffering, in hope that is sometimes against every hope”.

“That is why, here today, we can continue to praise God for the wonders he has brought to the lives of the Latin American people. … In the wonders which the Lord has achieved in Mary, she recognises her Son's style and way of acting in the story of Salvation. Sweeping away worldly judgements, destroying idols of power, riches, success at any cost, denouncing self-sufficiency, pride and a secularised which distances from God, the Mary’s Magnificat professes that God delights in subverting ideologies and worldly hierarchies. He lifts up the lowly, comes to the aid of the poor and the smallest among us, he fills with goodness, blessings and hope those who trust in his mercy from generation to generation, while he casts down the rich, the powerful, and rulers from their thrones. The 'Magnificat' introduces us to the Beatitudes, the earliest synthesis of the Gospel. In the light of the Beatitudes we feel compelled to ask that the future of Latin America be forged for the poor and those who suffer, for the humble, those who hunger and thirst for justice, for the compassionate, the pure of heart, those who work for peace, and for those who are persecuted because of Christ's name, 'for theirs is the kingdom of Heaven'. May theirs be the grace of being forged by those who today the idolatrous system of the throwaway culture relegates to the category of slaves, objects to be used or simply denied”.

“And we make this request because Latin America is the 'continent of hope'! Because she hopes in new ways of development which combine traditional Christianity and civil progress, justice and equity with reconciliation, scientific development and technology with human wisdom. Fruitful suffering with joyful hope. We can protect this hope only with great amounts of truth and mercy, the basis for all realities and revolutionary engines of an authentically new life”.

“We place these realities and these desires on the altar as a gift pleasing to God. … He is the only Lord, the 'liberator' of all of our slavery and misery derived from sin. He calls us to live the true life, a more human life, to live together as children and brothers, now that the doors to 'the new heaven and the new earth' are open. We implore the Blessed Virgin Mary, under the name 'Our Lady of Guadalupe' – the Mother of God, our Queen, our Lady, the young woman, our Little One (as called St. Juan Diego called her), and with all the loving names which popular piety has given her – that she may continue to accompany, help and protect our people. May she lead by the hand all pilgrim children in these lands to the encounter with her Son, Jesus Christ Our Lord, present in the Church, in its holiness, especially in the Eucharist, present in the treasure of his Word and teachings, present in the faithful and holy people of God, in those who suffer and in the humble of heart. So be it. Amen!”.

“I received my first ecumenical sermon from my grandmother, in front of you”, says the Pope to the Salvation Army

Vatican City, 13 December 2014 (VIS) – Yesterday, Friday 12 December, Pope Francis received in audience a delegation from the Salvation Army, well-known for their mission of evangelisation and voluntary work.

“Your visit is one of the good fruit of the more frequent and beneficial contacts that have developed during recent years between the Salvation Army and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity; contacts among which we must recall a series of theological conversations intended to promote better mutual understanding, mutual respect and regular collaboration. … I hope with all my heart that Catholics and Salvationists may continue to bear witness to Christ and the Gospel together in a world that greatly needs to experience God's mercy. Catholics and Salvationists, along with other Christians, recognise that the needy have a special place in God's heart, to the extent that the Lord Jesus Christ made Himself poor for us. As a consequence, they frequently encounter one another in the same human peripheries, and it is my fervent hope that common faith in our Saviour Jesus Christ, the sole mediator between God and Man, may become an increasingly solid foundation for friendship and collaboration between us”.

“I pray that in today's world, all Christ's disciples may offer their contribution with the same conviction and the same dynamism that the Salvation Army demonstrates in its devoted and valued service. The differences between Catholics and Salvationists on theological and ecclesiological matters must not obstruct the witness of our shared love for God and for our neighbour, a love that is able to inspire energetic efforts to restore the dignity of those who live at the margins of society”.

The Pope concluded by recounting an anecdote. When he was four years old – the year was 1940 – he was walking along the street with his grandmother. “At that time, there was the idea that all Protestants would go to hell. On the other side of the road there were two women from the Salvation Army, wearing their hats. And, I remember as if it were yesterday, I asked my grandmother, 'Who are those people? Nuns?', and she answered, 'No, they are Protestants, but they are good'. And so my grandmother, thanks to your good witness, opened the door to ecumenism for me. I received my first ecumenical sermon in front of you. Thank you very much”.

Cardinal Turkson to travel to Sierra Leone and Liberia to bring the solidarity of the Church to two of the countries hardest hit by the Ebola virus

Vatican City, 15 December 2014 (VIS) – Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council “Justice and Peace”, will travel to Sierra Leone on 16 December, followed by a visit to Liberia, two of the countries most affected by the Ebola virus. The World Health Organisation confirms around 18,000 probable or suspected cases and more than 6,500 deaths as a result of this disease. The cardinal wishes to offer “a message of solidarity and hope for the Church, for healthcare workers and for the population”.

Cardinal Turkson will be accompanied by Msgr. Robert J. Vitillo, special health consultor for Caritas Internationalis. “The Church, including Caritas, religious congregations and other Catholic-inspired organisms, has been on the front line in response to Ebola”, affirmed Vitillo. “As well as providing healthcare for other illnesses, establishing stringent procedures for infection control and creating screening areas, the Church, to prevent the transmission of the virus in the healthcare setting, has trained communities with the aim of involving the clergy and local parish groups in renewed efforts to stop the spread of this lethal virus”.

“On a number of occasions the Holy Father has expressed his profound concern for those affected by Ebola and for their loved ones. I hope to express the solidarity of the Pope and of all the Church”.

Audiences

Vatican City, 15 December 2014 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father received in audience:

- Dragan Covic, Croatian member of the presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and entourage;

- Archbishop Aldo Cavalli, apostolic nuncio in Malta and Libya;

- Archbishop Edgar Pena Parra, apostolic nuncio in Pakistan;

- Dennis Anthony Savoie, ambassador of Canada to the Holy See, presenting his letters of credence;

- Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches;

- Don Pier Giorgio Perini, founder of the Parish Cells of Evangelisation.

On Saturday, 13 December the Holy Father received in audience:

- Cardinal Marc Ouellet, P.S.S., prefect of the Congregation for Bishops;

- Matteo Renzi, prime minister of Italy, with his wife and entourage;

- Archbishop George Kocherry, apostolic nuncio in Bangladesh;

- Cardinal Sean Patrick O'Malley, archbishop of Boston, U.S.A.;

- George Weigel.

Other Pontifical Acts

Vatican City, 13 December 2014 (VIS) – The Holy Father has appointed Msgr. Marek Szkudlo and Fr. Adam Wodarczyk as auxiliaries of the archdiocese of Katowice (area 2,400, population 1,520,900, Catholics 1,477,900, priests 1,105, religious 1,013), Poland.

The bishop-elect Marek Szkudlo was born in Tychy, Poland in 1952 and was ordained a priest in 1978. He has served in a number of pastoral roles, including deputy priest in the parishes of “St. Margaret Lyski” and “St. Michael Archangel” in Katowice, chaplain of the scouts and member of the diocesan liturgical commission; parish priest of Our Lady Mother of the Church in Jastrzebie Zdroj and dean of Jastrzebie Gorne, chaplain for workers and miners, moderators for young priests and member of the Council of Consultors. He is currently episcopal vicar for permanent formation of priests, member of the college of consultors, of the presbyteral council and president of the diocesan commission for the clergy.

The bishop-elect Adam Wodarczyk was born in Tarnowskie Gory, Poland in 1968 and was ordained a priest in 1994. He holds a licentiate from the Catholic University of Liblino and a doctorate in pastoral theology from the Silesia State University and has served as deputy curate of the “St. Hedwig of Silesia” parish in Chorzow, and regional moderator of the “Light-Life” Movement. He is currently moderator general of the Light-Life Movement, appointed by the Polish Episcopal Council and, at national level, consultor of the Council for youth pastoral, of the Committee for new evangelisation and the missionary radio.

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