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Monday, October 11, 2010


VATICAN CITY, 10 OCT 2010 (VIS) - At 9.30 a.m. today, the Holy Father Benedict XVI presided at a concelebration of the Eucharist with Synod Fathers for the solemn opening of the Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for the Middle East, which is to be held in the Vatican's Synod Hall until 24 October. The theme of the synodal assembly is: "The Catholic Church in the Middle East. Communion and Witness. Now the company of those who believed were of one heart and soul".


VATICAN CITY, 10 OCT 2010 (VIS) - At midday today, after having concelebrated Mass with the Synod Fathers to inaugurate the Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for the Middle East, the Holy Father appeared at the window of his private study to pray the Angelus with thousands of faithful gathered below in St. Peter's Square.

  In the Middle East, the Pope remarked, "the one Church of Christ expresses herself in all the richness of her ancient traditions". In the countries of that region, "unfortunately marked by profound divisions and lacerated by years-long conflicts, the Church is called to be a sign and instrument of unity and reconciliation", he said.

  "This is an arduous task, because the Christians of the Middle East often find themselves having to support difficult living conditions at a personal, family and community level. But this must not be a discouragement; it is precisely in such a context that the perennial message of Christ to 'believe in the Good News' becomes more necessary and urgent".

  In the month of October, which is dedicated to the Rosary, Benedict XVI entrusted the work of the Synod to the Virgin Mary, who is "so loved and venerated by our brothers and sisters in the Middle East and, ... as the Star of Hope, is close to all forms of suffering.

  "To her intercession", the Holy Father added in conclusion, "we entrust the synodal assembly, ... that the Christians of the region may be strengthened in communion and bear witness to the Gospel of love and peace".
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VATICAN CITY, 11 OCT 2010 (VIS) - The first General Congregation of the Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for the Middle East was held this morning in the Synod Hall. The meeting was presided by the Pope.

  Benedict XVI made some brief opening remarks in which he recalled how on this day, 11 October, in the year 1962, Pope John XXIII officially opened Vatican Council II.


VATICAN CITY, 9 OCT 2010 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office released the following communique at midday today:

  "This morning the Holy Father Benedict XVI received in audience Ivo Josipovic, president of the Republic of Croatia. President Josipovic 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.

  "The cordial discussions provided an occasion for a fruitful exchange of opinions on questions concerning the current situation in the region, with particular reference to the position of Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

  "Attention then turned to certain aspects of the situation in Croatia itself, to the Church's contribution to cultural and spiritual development, to the country's path to full integration into the European Union, and to the importance of it maintaining its specific Christian identity".
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VATICAN CITY, 9 OCT 2010 (VIS) - At midday today the Pope received participants in a congress called to mark the twentieth anniversary of the publication of the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.

  This anniversary, said the Holy Father, provides an occasion "to examine to what extent the Code has had effective force of law for all 'sui iuris' Eastern Catholic Churches, and how it has been translated into their daily lives". Moreover, it is an opportunity to consider "the extent to which the legislative authority of each 'sui iuris' Church has undertaken to promulgate its own particular law, while bearing in mind the traditions of its own rite and the dispositions of Vatican Council II.

  "The themes of your congress (divided into three sections: historical, legislative and ecumenical) are", he added, "an important indication of the course to be followed in this matter".

  Benedict XVI then highlighted how "the 'sacri canones' of the ancient Church, which are the inspiration for the current Eastern Code, stimulate all the Eastern Churches to preserve their own identity, which is Oriental and Catholic at one and the same time. In maintaining Catholic communion the Eastern Catholic Churches had no intention of renouncing faithfulness to their own tradition", he said. "As has been noted on several occasions, the union they have already achieved with the Church of Rome must not cause the Eastern Catholic Churches to lose an awareness of their own authenticity and originality. Therefore, the task of all the Eastern Catholic Churches is that of preserving their legal heritage and nourishing their traditions, which are a treasure for the whole Church".

  The Holy Father went on: "To a large extent, those same 'sacri canones' of the early centuries of the Church also constitute the fundamental and identical heritage of Canon Law that regulate the Orthodox Churches. Thus, the Eastern Catholic Churches can make a specific and important contribution to the progress of ecumenism".

  The Pope concluded his remarks by noting how, "in the context of the Church's current commitment to the new evangelisation, Canon Law, as the specific and indispensable regulation of ecclesial unity, will not fail to make an effective contribution to the life and mission of the Church in the world, if all members of the People of God interpret it wisely and apply it faithfully".
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VATICAN CITY, 11 OCT 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in separate audiences:

 - Archbishop Joseph William Tobin C.SS.R., secretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Apostolic Life and Societies of Apostolic Life.

 - Archbishop Giorgio Lingua, apostolic nuncio to Jordan and Iraq, accompanied by members of his family.

 - Bishop Ignacio Carrasco de Paula, president of the Pontifical Academy for Life.

 - Bishop Enrico Dal Covolo S.D.B., rector of the Pontifical Lateran University, accompanied by members of his family.

  On Saturday 9 October the Holy Father received in separate audiences:

 - Cardinal Francis Eugene George O.M.I., archbishop of Chicago, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, accompanied by Bishop Gerald Frederic Kicanas of Tucson, vice president; Msgr. David John Malloy, secretary general, and Msgr. Ronny Jenkins, adjunct secretary general.

 - Cardinal Marc Ouellet P.S.S., prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.
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VATICAN CITY, OCT 11, 2010 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

 - Appointed Archbishop-Bishop Cesare Nosiglia of Vicenza, Italy, as metropolitan archbishop of Turin (area 3,350, population 2,098,713, Catholics 1,941,913, priests 1,157, permanent deacons 135, religious 4,368), Italy. He succeeds Cardinal Severino Poletto, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.

 - Appointed Fr. Emidio Cipollone of the clergy of the diocese of Avezzano, Italy, spiritual director of the St. Pius X Regional Seminary at Chieti, as archbishop of Lanciano-Ortona (area 305, population 93,764, Catholics 91,890, priests 60, permanent deacons 8, religious 120), Italy. The archbishop-elect was born in Cese di Avezzano, Italy in 1960 and ordained a priest in 1984. He succeeds Archbishop Carlo Ghidelli, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same archdiocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.

 - Appointed Fr. Odelir Jose Magri M.C.C.I., vicar general of the Combonian Fathers in Rome, as bishop of Sobral (area 18,920, population 908,000, Catholics 769,000, priests 57, religious 128), Brazil. The bishop-elect was born in Campo Ere, Brazil in 1963 and ordained a priest in 1988.

 - Appointed Christoph Graf, captain of the Pontifical Swiss Guard, as vice commander of the same corps, with the rank of lieutenant colonel.
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