November 6, 2015

Vatican Information Service Bulletin

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

Summary

- The Pope receives the governor general of Grenada

- Francis: helping human life means reaching out to those in need

- The Pope is interviewed by the newspaper Straatnieuws: “The Church teaches that everyone has the right to work, a home and the earth”

- Christians and Hindus: promoting human ecology together

- Audiences

- Other Pontifical Acts

The Pope receives the governor general of Grenada

Vatican City, 6 November 2015 (VIS) – This morning in the Vatican Apostolic Palace Pope Francis received in audience the governor general of Grenada, Cecile Ellen Fleurette La Grenade, who subsequently met with Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, accompanied by Archbishop Paul Gallagher, secretary for Relations with States.

During the cordial discussions, emphasis was placed on the good bilateral relations between the Holy See and Grenada, as well as the important contribution of the Catholic Church to the development of the country, especially with reference to social challenges and the education of the young.

Finally, this was followed by an overview of the situation of the Caribbean region, with particular reference to economic problems and environmental issues linked to climate changes.

Francis: helping human life means reaching out to those in need

Vatican City, 6 November 2015 (VIS) - “I encourage you to continue your important work in favour of life from conception until its natural end, also taking into account the conditions of suffering that many brothers and sisters have to face and at times submit to”, said Pope Francis this morning as he received, in the Sala Regia, the 510 participants in the Congress of the Movement for Life being held in Sacrofano, Italy from 6 to 8 November.

“In existential dynamics everything is related, and we need to nurture a personal and social sensibility both towards the welcoming of a new life and towards those situations of poverty and exploitation that affect the weakest and most disadvantaged. On the one hand, 'how can be genuinely teach the importance of concern for other vulnerable beings, however troublesome or inconvenient they may be, if we fail to protect a human embryo?”. On the other, 'human life itself is a gift which must be defended from various forms of debasement'”, he affirmed, citing his encyclical “Laudato si'” and adding that “indeed, we must note sadly that there are many people who experience uncomfortable conditions of life, who require our attention and our solidarity”.

“For Christ's disciples, helping wounded human life meant going towards people in need, putting themselves by their sides, and taking on board their frailty and suffering so as to relieve them. How many families are vulnerable due to poverty, illness, unemployment and homelessness? How many elderly people suffer the burden of suffering and loneliness? How many young people are lost, threatened by addiction and other forms of slavery, waiting to rediscover trust in life? These people, wounded in body and spirit, are icons of that man of the Gospel who, travelling the road from Jerusalem to Jericho, ran into some brigands who robbed and beat him. He experienced first the indifference of some, and then the closeness of the good Samaritan”.

On this path, “that crosses the desert of life, even in our times there are still many wounded people, caused by today's brigands, who despoil them not only of their belongings but also of their dignity. Faced with the suffering and need of our defenceless brothers, some turn away or move on, whereas others stop and respond with generous dedication to their cry for help. You, members of the Movement for Life, have sought to imitate the good Samaritan during the forty years of your activity. Before the various forms of threats to human life, you have approached the frailty of others, you have taken action so that in society there may no longer be excluded or marginalised who live in precarious conditions”.

The Pope again thanked the members of the Movement for their work, and invited them to continue “to protect the most vulnerable people, who have the right to be born into life, as well as those who ask for a healthier and more dignified existence. In particular, there is a need to work at different levels and with perseverance, in the promotion and defence of the family, society's foremost resource, especially with reference to the gift of children and the affirmation of the dignity of the woman”.

To this end, he concluded, “I would like to underline that in your activity, you have always welcomed everyone regardless of religion and nationality. The relevant number of women, especially immigrants, who attend your centres show that when women are offered concrete support, in spite of problems and influences, they are able to make the sense of love, life and maternity triumph within them”.

The Pope is interviewed by the newspaper Straatnieuws: “The Church teaches that everyone has the right to work, a home and the earth”

Vatican City, 6 November 2015 (VIS) – The Dutch newspaper “Straatnieuws”, published by the homeless, today published an interview granted by Pope Francis on 27 October. The article is also present in other dailies of the same type associated with the International Network of Street Papers (INSP), which has 113 members. This type of publication is sold directly by the homeless, thus providing them with a source of income.

The following are extensive extracts from the interview, especially with the theme of poverty.

Interviewer: What is the Church's message for the homeless? What does Christian solidarity mean for them in practice?

Pope Francis: “Two things come to mind. Jesus came to the world homeless, and made Himself poor. Then, the Church wishes to embrace all and to say that it is a right to have a roof over your head. In popular movements they work according to the three Spanish 't's: trabajo (work), techo (casa) and tierra (earth). The Church teaches that every person has a right to all three”.

Interviewer: You often ask for attention to the poor and refugees. Do you not fear that in this way a sort of weariness in relation to this theme may be generated in the mass media or in society in general?

Pope Francis: “When we return to a theme that is not pleasant, because it is disagreeable to talk about it, we are all tempted to say. 'That's enough, I am tired of this'. I feel that this weariness exists, but I am not afraid of it. I must continue to speak the truth and say how these things are”.

Interviewer: Are you not afraid that your defence of solidarity and assistance for the homeless and other poor people may be exploited politically? How should the Church speak in order to be influential and at the same time remain external to political affiliations?

Pope Francis: “There are roads that lead to errors in this regard. I would like to underline two temptations. The Church must speak truthfully and also by her witness: the witness of poverty. If a believer speaks about poverty or the homeless and lives like a pharaoh, this is not good. This is the first temptation.

“The second temptation is to make agreements with governments. Agreements can be made but they must be clear and transparent. For example, we manage this building, but the accounts are all audited, in order to avoid corruption, as there is always the temptation to corruption in public life, both political and religious. … Once I asked a question to a minister in Argentina, an honest man – one who left his post because he could not reconcile himself with various obscure aspects. I asked him: when you give assistance in the form of meals, clothing or money to the poor and needy, what percentage of what you send arrives? And he answered, 35 per cent. That means that 65 per cent is lost. It is corruption: a cut for me, another cut for you”.

Interviewer: Your namesake St. Francis chose radical poverty and even sold his evangeliarium. As the Pope, and bishop of Rome, do you ever feel under pressure to sell the Church's treasures?

Pope Francis: “This is an easy question. They are not the treasures of the Church, they are treasures of humanity. For example, if tomorrow I decide to put Michelangelo's Pieta up for auction, I cannot do this, since it is not the property of the Church. It is kept in a church but it belongs to humanity. This is true of all the treasures of the Church. But we have started to sell gifts and other things that are given to me, and the proceeds from sales go to Msgr. Krajewski, who is my almoner. Then there is the lottery. There were cars that have all been sold or given away with a lottery and the proceeds are used for the poor. There are things that can be sold, and we sell these”.

Interviewer: Are you aware that the wealth of the Church can give rise to this type of expectation?

Pope Francis: “Yes, if we make a catalogue of the assets of the Church, it seems that the Church is very rich. But when the Concordat was made with Italy in 1929 on the Roman Question, the Italian government at the time offered to the Church a large park in Rome. And the then Pope Pius XI said no, I would like just half a square kilometre to guarantee the Church's independence. This principle still stands.

“Yes, the real estate of the Church is considerable, but we use it to maintain the structures of the Church and to maintain many works that are carried out in countries in need: hospitals and schools. Yesterday, for example, I asked for 50,000 euros to be sent to Congo to build three schools in poor villages, as education is important for children. They went to the competent administration, I made the request, and the money was sent”.

Interviewer: Holy Father, is it possible to imagine a world without the poor?

Pope Francis: “I would like a world without the poor. We must fight for this. But I am a believer and I know that sin is always within us. And there is always human greed, the lack of solidarity, the selfishness that creates poverty. Therefore, would seem difficult to me to imagine a world without the poor. If you think about children exploited for slave labour, or sexually abused children. And another form of exploitation: children killed for the trafficking of organs. Killing children to remove their organs is greed. Therefore, I do not know if we will be able to make a world without poverty, because sin is always there and leads to selfishness. But we must always fight, always ...”.

Christians and Hindus: promoting human ecology together

Vatican City, 6 November 2015 (VIS) – Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, has written a message to the followers of Hinduism on the occasion of Deepavali, the Festival of Lights, which will be celebrated on 11 November this year. The message, entitled “Christians and Hindus: promoting human ecology together”, is also signed by Fr. Miguel Angel Ayuso Guixot, M.C.C.J, secretary of the same dicastery.

In the text, Cardinal Tauran comments that Pope Francis, in his recent encyclical “Laudato si'”, addresses the environmental and human ecological crisis threatening our planet. “Thus we deem it opportune to share, in keeping with our cherished tradition, some thoughts on the need to promote human ecology, and to foster a rediscovery of the interconnectedness of creation. Human ecology points to the relationship and responsibility which humans have towards the earth and to the cultivation of 'ecological virtues'. These virtues include a sustainable use of the earth's resources through the adoption of policies, at national and international levels, which respect the interconnectedness and interdependence of human beings and nature. These issues, as we know, have a direct bearing not only on the current health of our earth – the home of the human family – but also for generations to come”.

“Human selfishness, as evidenced in consumerist and hedonistic tendencies in some individuals and groups, nurtures an insatiable desire to be 'masters' and 'conquerors' rather than 'guardians' and 'stewards' of nature. We are all called, regardless of religious belief or national identity, to live with a greater responsibility towards nature, to nurture life-giving relationships and, most of all, to reorder our lifestyles and economic structures according to the ecological challenges facing us. Your tradition stresses the 'oneness' of nature, humanity and the divine. The Christian faith teaches that the created world is God's gift to all human beings. As stewards of the created order, we are called to care for it responsibly and resolutely”.

“There is an inseparable link between our harmony with creation and our peace with one another. If peace is to prevail in the world, we must, together and as individuals, consciously give ourselves to 'protecting nature, defending the poor, and building networks of respect and fraternity'. Promotion of human ecology requires formation and education, at all levels, in ecological consciousness and responsibility, and in the wise stewardship of the earth's resources. This begins in the family, 'the first and fundamental structure for 'human ecology in which man receives his formative ideas about truth and goodness, and learns what it means to love and to be loved, and thus what it actually means to be a person'. Educational and governmental structures have a responsibility to form citizens in a proper understanding of human ecology and its relationship to the future of humanity and the created world”.

“United by our humanity and mutual responsibility, as well as our shared values and convictions, may we Hindus and Christians, together with people of all religious traditions and good will, always foster a culture which promotes human ecology. In this way, there will be harmony within us, and in our relationships with others, with nature and with God, which will 'favour the growth of the tree of peace'”.

“Praying for a healthy ecology and creating awareness of the various ways to care for creation is a truly ennobling work. Pope Francis has instituted, therefore, an annual 'World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation' to be observed on 1 September. It is hoped that this initiative will increase awareness among all people of the need to be good stewards of creation and, thereby, promote a true human ecology”.

Audiences

Vatican City, 6 November 2015 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father received in audience:

- Archbishop Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer, S.J., secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith;

- Archbishop Celestino Migliore, apostolic nuncio in Poland.

Other Pontifical Acts

Vatican City, 6 November 2015 (VIS) – The Holy Father has appointed:

- Bishop Juan Jose Omella Omella of Calahorra y La Calzada-Logrono, Spain as archbishop of Barcelona (area 340, population 2,657,000, Catholics 2,116,479, priests 826, permanent deacons 46, religious 3,092), Spain.

- Bishop Jozef de Kesel of Bruges, Belgium, as archbishop of Malines-Bruxelles (area 3,635, population 2,825,000, Catholics 1,807,000, priests 1,794, permanent deacons 88, religious 3,249), Belgium. He succeeds Archbishop Andre Leonard, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese upon reaching the age limit was accepted by the Holy Father.

- Bishop Jozef de Kesel as military ordinary for Belgium.

Local site Links:

Like this story" Then share it!