People give witness to ways Pope John Paul changed, saved their lives

VATICAN CITY - Hundreds of people have been giving public witness to the ways Pope John Paul II changed or even saved their lives. Men and women of all ages and nationalities have sent personal stories to -- a website run by the Diocese of Rome dedicated to the late pope's beatification and canonization. As of April 28, the multi-lingual site published more than 400 testimonies from people sharing the ways they feel Pope John Paul interceded on their behalf or brought them back to the church. Many are notes of thanks for prayers answered, such as a risky surgery gone well or troubles in the family resolved. Others are personal accounts of meeting or seeing the pope during one of his many trips abroad and the feeling of being in the presence of a holy and charismatic man. Others were influenced by the way Pope John Paul reached ...Read More

Today in Church History - April 29

1670 Pope Clement X elected Clement X was elected as a compromise candidate after a very difficult conclave lasting 5 months. His Holiness Pope Clement X died on 22 July 1676 in Rome, in the 7th year of his pontificate, at the age of 86-years. He was buried on 26 July in the Patriarchal Vatican Basilica, and his mortal remains were transferred on 15 October 1691 to the Chapel of St. Petronilla of the same basilica. Dates: Born: July 12, 1590 (Rome, Italy) Died: July 22, 1676 Crowned: May 11, 1670 Pope: April 29, 1670 - July 22, 1676 (6 years) ...Read More

Pope: Christians are called to bring hope, happiness and life

VATICAN CITY Apr 28, 2011 - Christians are called to bring hope, happiness and life to a world marked by despair, sadness and death, Pope Benedict XVI said. Believing in Christ and his resurrection means bringing new life to others and "dedicating oneself without reserve to the most urgent and just causes" with God's grace and his logic of love, the pope said April 27 at his weekly general audience. More than 20,000 people packed into St. Peter's Square, many of them young Italian students who were still off from school for the Easter holidays. Banners commemorating Pope John Paul II and his pontificate were hung between the columns surrounding the square in the run-up to the Polish pope's May 1 beatification. For his catechesis, Pope Benedict looked at the meaning of Easter and Christ's resurrection for the Christian community. "F ...Read More

Pope Benedict XVI will celebrate the beatification mass of Pope John Paul II

VATICAN CITY, Apr 28, 2011 - As the countdown continued for the beatification of Pope John Paul II, church and civil authorities put the finishing touches on logistical plans to handle potentially massive crowds at the main events in Rome. Meanwhile, Vatican officials were heartened at the massive response to online projects designed to make the beatification a universal experience. Pope Benedict XVI will celebrate the beatification Mass in St. Peter's Square May 1. Because no tickets are being handed out for the liturgy, no one really knows how many people to expect. Estimates range from 300,000 to 1.5 million, and crowd control barriers will be set up for blocks around the Vatican. Immediately after Mass, the faithful can pray before Pope John Paul's unopened casket, which will be set in front of the main altar in St. Peter's Basilica. The veneration is expected to conti ...Read More


VATICAN CITY, 12 APR 2011- The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments has issued a decree establishing that the celebration of the memorial of Blessed John Paul II be inserted into the calendar of the diocese of Rome and the dioceses of Poland, and that it be celebrated every year. The text, signed by cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera and archbishop Giuseppe Agostino Di Noia, O.P., respectively prefect and secretary of the dicastery, states that "during the year following the beatification of John Paul II, that is, until 1 May 2012, A a Mass of Thanksgiving to God may be celebrated in certain places and on certain days. Responsibility for establishing the day or days, as well as the place or places of the gathering of the people of God, shall be the competence of the diocesan bishop for his diocese. Considering local needs and pastoral conveniences, it is granted that a Holy Mass b ...Read More


VATICAN CITY, 12 APR 2011 - The Special Council for the Middle East of the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops met for the third time on 30 and 31 March. The agenda included an update on the current situation of the various churches of Council members, and the preparation of a study with a view to forming a working draft on the proposals of the Special Assembly of the Middle East of the Synod of Bishops, held in October 2010. A press release issued today affirmed that "the general situation in the Middle East and North Africa provided the context for the exchange of opinions and information. The precarious situation caused by to socio-political movements directly involves the Churches which share in the joys and worries of citizens, in many cases forced to emigrate due to violence, lack of work, restriction of religious freedom and limited democracy ...Read More

Bishop of Luoyang Died

Luoyang, Apr 27, 2011 – Mgr. Peter Li Hongye, 91, bishop of Luoyang (Henan) died of a heart attack on April 23 last, during the Easter Vigil, as he blessed the water before baptisms. He was approved by the Holy See, but not recognized by the government in Beijing. His faithful remember him for his fortitude in living his vocation and his suffering in the forced labour camps and the time spent under surveillance. A priest from the diocese told> that the funeral of Mgr. Li will next be held April 29 at the birthplace of the Prelate, Gong County, halfway between Zhengzhou and Luoyang. Other sources tell that Mgr. Li knew Latin perfectly. During the 50s and 60s was sent to forced labour camps ("reform through labor") in Qinghai. Since the late 80's he has always lived un ...Read More

Pope Benedict XVI prayed for freedom, justice and peace in Easter mass

VATICAN CITY, Apr 25, 2011 -   In an Easter blessing to the world, Pope Benedict XVI prayed that Christ's resurrection may open paths of "freedom, justice and peace" for troubled populations of the Middle East and Africa. The pope urged an end to violence in Libya and Ivory Coast, assistance to refugees flooding out of North Africa and consolation for the victims of the Japanese earthquake. He prayed for those persecuted for their Christian faith, and praised their courage. He spoke from the central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica April 24 in his blessing "urbi et orbi" (to the city of Rome and to the world), after celebrating Mass for nearly 100,000 people in St. Peter's Square. Broadcast to many countries and live-streamed on the Internet, it was the last major event on the 84-year-old pontiff's heavy Holy Week schedule. Pope Benedict said the resurrection of Christ ...Read More

New Cult Emperor Emmanuel in India deceives huge Catholics

Kerala,India, Sep.15, 2010 - A new cult Emperor Emmanuel also known as Zion flourishing in a place called muriyad, Kerala founded by Mr.Joseph Ponnara is deceiving large number of catholics from the true faith.A report recently published by Mr.Michael Prabhu, a catholic apologist from chennai, India in his website describes how the catholics are deviated by Mr.Joseph ponnara through series of in house retreat programmes conducted by him every week in Zion.Mr.Joseph ponnara's personal interpretations of the scriptures are proclaimed as personal revelation to him by "God the Father" .Zion condemns the catholic church as false church and the controversial revelations of this new cult is attracting many catholics from different states of India every week which is an indication of impending danger to the Catholic faith in India. ...Read More

Cuba agreed to free 52 political prisoners

Cuba, July 08, 2010 - Cuba has agreed to free 52 political prisoners after a meeting between Cuban President Raul Castro and Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos and brokered by the Catholic Church.Five prisoners were released immediately and would travel "shortly" to Spain with their families, Cardinel Jaime Ortega, the archbishop of Havana announced. The remaining 47 dissidents will be freed within the next three to four months, a church statement said.The 52 prisoners are part of a group of 75 dissidents who were sentenced to jail terms of between six and 28 years in Cuba. The Cuban government claimed they were "mercenaries" working in the interest of foreign nations, such as the United States.'New era'Spanish Foreign Minister Moratinos said this was "a new era" for communist Cuba, and said that Castro had assured him the exiles and their relatives would be able to return to visit Cuba and their property would not be confiscated. These measu ...Read More

Pappal Preacher's 1st Lenten Homily

"Dispensers of the Mysteries of God: priests, ministers of the Word and the Sacraments".VATICAN CITY, 5 MAR 2010 - In the "Redemptoris Mater" Chapel of the Vatican Apostolic Palace at 9 a.m. today, in the presence of the Holy Father, Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa O.F.M. Cap., preacher of the Pontifical Household, delivered the first Lenten sermon. The theme of his meditations this year is: "Dispensers of the Mysteries of God: priests, ministers of the Word and the Sacraments".This year's Lenten meditations will continue to explore the episcopal and priestly ministries in the context of the current Year for Priests. Particular attention will be given to the following aspects: the person of Jesus Christ, heart of the Christian message; announcing what we live and living what we announce; how to live and help others to live the Eucharistic mystery; towards a renewal of the Catholic priesthood in the Holy Spirit.The next two sermons will be given on the Friday 12 and Fri ...Read More

Pope's brother apologizes to abuse victims at his former school

WARSAW, Poland -- The brother of Pope Benedict XVI apologized to child victims of sexual abuse at his former school even though he said he was unaware of the alleged incidents."There was never any talk of sexual abuse problems and I had no idea that molestation was taking place," Msgr. Georg Ratzinger said, recalling his 30 years as choirmaster at the school that trains the elite boys' choir of the Regensburg Cathedral.His comments came during an interview with the German newspaper Neue Passauer Presse March 9."I'm deeply sorry for anyone whose spiritual or physical integrity was injured by abuse," said Msgr. Ratzinger, who was choirmaster between 1964 and 1994. "Today, such things are condemned even more because of greater sensitivities. I also condemn them, and simultaneously ask pardon from the victims."Msgr. Ratzinger recalled that the priest who headed the school from 1953 until his death in 1992 had slapped boys in the face, but said he had not con ...Read More


Killings in NigeriaHoly See Press Office Director Fr. Federico Lombardi S.J. on Monday expressed "concern and horror" at the violent conflicts which have taken place in Nigeria in recent days. The attacks led to the deaths of 500 Christians of the Berom ethnic group, in villages in central northern Nigeria, at the hands of Muslims of the Fulani ethnic group. Fr. Lombardi also explained that the events are to be seen "not as a religious, but a social confrontation."Echoing that statement were the words of Archbishop John Olorunfemi Onaiyekan of Abuja, Nigeria, in an interview with Vatican Radio. "This is a classic conflict between herdsmen and farmers, except that the Fulani are all Muslims and the Berom all Christians,” said the archbishop. He added that “The international media are quickly led to report that it is Christians and Muslims who are killing one another; but this is not true, because the killings are not caused by religion but by social, economic, tr ...Read More

Christmas time exodus brings some silent nights to nation's capital

WASHINGTON - Christmas is a time of year filled with references and allusions to things and times past, regardless of where it is celebrated.In the nation's capital, one might think the Dec. 19 snowstorm that dumped a record 16.4 inches of snow on Washington would have made for some silent nights, the occasional spinning of tires on icy pavement excepted.Usually during the Christmas season in the Capitol building, not a creature is stirring, not even a mouse. However, with the Senate taking a series of votes on health care reform legislation right up to and on Christmas Eve before recessing, the place was buzzing.Washington is a mecca that draws people from all over the country who want to try to make their mark, most often in public policy but also the media, the arts, or a range of other endeavors.But they're not necessarily here to stay and many keep strong ties to their home states. Most Christmases there's an exodus to rival the one in the Old Testam ...Read More

USCCB: We will have to oppose the health care bill vigorously

Washington, U.S.A, oct.09, 2009 - The leadership of the US bishops' conference has issued a clear statement of opposition to the heath-care reform legislation pending in Congress.In a joint letter to Congress, Cardinal Justin Rigali and Bishops William Murphy and John Wester said expressed their "disappointment" that the legislation did not incorporate safeguards to prevent taxpayer subsidies for abortion, to protect the consciences of health-care workers, and to cover the needs of legal immigrants. These problems make the legislation unacceptable in its present form, they said.The prelates' letter emphasized that the Church regards health care as a fundamental right, and reminded lawmakers that the US bishops have consistently supported efforts to provide comprehensive health care for all American citizens. However, the legislation must incorporate fundamental principles of justice, they said. "If final legislation does not meet our principles, we will have no choice ...Read More

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