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Day: July 24, 2015

Holy See: int’l cooperation needed to end Mideast conflicts

(Vatican Radio)  The Holy See has renewed its call for international cooperation to bring to an end the conflicts in the Middle East and help care for the millions of refugees from Iraq and the Syrian war.
In a speech to the United Nations Security Council during an open debate Thursday on “The situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian, question,” Archbishop Bernardito Auza, the Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the UN, said the “dramatic humanitarian situation” in Syria is “particularly preoccupying.” 
Calling for a renewed commitment by all to achieve a political solution to the conflict, he said “we should not continue to look helplessly from the sidelines while a great country is being destroyed.”
He described the so-called Islamic State group terrorizing the region as a “terrorist plague” that must be thwarted with the unified cooperation of the entire international community.
Lebanon and Jordan, which host millions of refugees, he added, bear the brunt of the Syrian conflict and urgently need the world’s solidarity.
He noted the Holy See’s hopes that the institutional vacuum of Lebanon’s Presidency (constitutionally held by a Christian but vacant for more than a year) will soon be filled.
He reiterated the Holy See’s concern for the region’s minority communities, particularly its Christians, who have been forced from their homes and welcomed the recent accord reached between Iran and the 5+1 group of nations.
Recalling the Comprehensive Agreement signed by the Holy See and the State of Palestine in June, Archbishop Auza said it is hoped that the Agreement will stimulate the “achievement of a two State solution, bringing a definitive end to the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
Below please find the official text of Archbishop Auza’s remarks:
New York, 23 July 2015
Mr President,
My Delegation congratulates you on New Zealand’s Presidency of the Security Council this month and commends you for convening this timely open debate  on “The situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian Question.”
The Holy  See continues to monitor closely the situation in the Middle East,  which  is  deeply  afflicted  by  various  conflicts  that  continue  to  intensify.  Unfortunately,  the  international  community,  which  seems  to  have  become  accustomed  to  these  conflicts,  has  not  yet  succeeded  in  working  out  an adequate response.
Particularly  preoccupying  is  the  situation  in  Syria,  where  the  dramatic  humanitarian  situation  affecting  more  than  half  of  the  population  calls  for renewed  commitment  by  all  in  order  to  arrive  at  a  political  solution  to  the conflict. We should not continue to look helplessly from the sidelines while a great country is being destroyed. The situation in Syria requires putting aside many particular interests in order to prioritise those of Syria and of the Syrians  themselves.
In  Syria  as  well  as  in  Iraq,  we  continue  to  be  gravely  concerned  about  the  terrorist acts perpetrated by the so-called “Islamic State.” This is a challenge not only for the region but for the entire international community, which is  called upon to cooperate with unity of purpose in order to thwart this terrorist  plague, which is expanding its activities into different countries.
Having to take care of millions of refugees, Lebanon and Jordan also bear the  brunt of the conflict in neighbouring  Syria. They urgently need the solidarity  of the whole international community.
The Holy See hopes that the Land of the Cedars will be able to resolve, as soon  as  possible,  this  period  of  institutional  instability,  arising  largely  from  the  vacancy for over a year now of the Presidency of the Republic. 
While being aware of the sufferings of entire populations, I wish to point out  the difficulties that Christians and other minority ethnic and religious groups  are experiencing, forcing many of them to leave their homes. The diminution  of the Christian presence is a grave loss for the entire region, where Christians  have been present since the very beginnings of Christianity and where they  wish to continue cooperating with their fellow citizens in building harmonious  societies  and  working  for  the  common  good,  as  promoters  of  peace,  reconciliation and development.
My  delegation  wishes  to  express  appreciation  for  the  agreement  which  has  been reached between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the 5+1 group.
On  June  26  this  year,  the  Holy  See  and  the  State  of  Palestine  signed  the  Comprehensive  Agreement  that  follows  the  Basic  Agreement  between  the  Holy See and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) of 15 February  2000. This Agreement is indicative of the progress made by the Palestinian  Authority in recent years, above all in the level of international  upport  it has  acquired, as exemplified by UN Resolution 67/19, which, inter alia, recognizes  Palestine as a non-member Observer State.
The Holy See hopes that this Agreement may in some way be a stimulus to the  achievement of the two-State solution, bringing a definitive end to the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict that continues to cause suffering on both  Parties, and that the Agreement may offer, within the complex reality of the  Middle East, a good example of dialogue and cooperation.
As Pope Francis said during his pilgrimage to the Holy Land last year: “The  time has come for everyone to find the courage to be generous and creative in  the service of the common good, the courage to forge a peace that rests on the  acknowledgment by all of the right of two States to exist and to live in peace  and security within internationally recognized  orders.”1
In this context, my delegation wishes to reiterate that the peace process can  move  forward  only  if  it  is  directly  negotiated  between  the  Parties,  with  the  support of the international community.
Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Meeting with Palestinian Authorities, Bethlehem, 25 May 2014.
(from Vatican Radio)…

Members and substitutes for the Synod of Bishops

(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis on Friday confirmed more members and substitutes for the Fourteenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, which will take place from October 4-25, 2015, under the theme “The vocation and mission of the family in the Church and in the contemporary world.”
For a listing of other members and substitutes confirmed for the Synod on the Family, see our previous posts on 26 March and 16 June .
The following is a list of the members and substitutes appointed by the competent entities and ratified by the Holy Father on 24 July.
Ivory Coast
Member :  Bishop Ignace BESSI DOGBO, of Katiola, President of the National Episcopal Commission for the Apostolate of the Laity
Member :  Bishop Juan MATOGO OYANA, C.M.F., of Bata
Member :  Archbishop Paulino LUKUDU LORO, M.C.C.J., of Juba
Substitute :  Bishop Michael Didi Adgum MANGORIA, of El Obeid
Member :  Bishop Xavier Johnsai MUNYONGANI, of Gweru
Member :  Bishop Miguel Ángel CABELLO ALMADA, of Concepción in Paraguay
Substitute :  Bishop Pierre Laurent JUBINVILLE, C.S.Sp., of San Pedro
2nd Substitute :  Bishop Lawrence Pius DORAIRAJ, of Dharmapuri
Member :  Archbishop Ramzi GARMOU, of Teheran of the Chaldeans, Patriarchal Administrator of Ahwaz of the Chaldeans
Substitute :  Titular Archbishop Neshan KARAKÉHÉYAN, of Adana of the Armenians, Patriarchal Administrator of Ispahan, Esfáan of the Armenians
Member :  Bishop Silvio Siripong CHARATSRI, of Chanthaburi
Substitute :  Archbishop Louis CHAMNIERN SANTISUKNIRAN, of Thare and Nonseng
East Timor
Member : Bishop Basílio DO NASCIMENTO, of Baucau, President of the Bishop’s Conference
Substitute :  Bishop Norberto DO AMARAL, of Maliana
International Bishops’ Conference of the Saints Cyril and Methodius
Member :  Bishop Ladislav NEMET, S.V.D., of Zrenjanin in Serbia
Member :  Archbishop Zbignevs STANKEVIČS, of Riga
Substitute :  Bishop Jānis BULIS, of Rēzekne-Aglona, President of Bishop’s Conference
Member :  Bishop Teemu SIPPO, S.C.I., of Helsinki in Finland
Substitute :  Bishop Czeslaw KOZON, of Copenhagen in Denmark
Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands
Member :  Bishop Anton BAL, of Kundiawa, “Commission for Family Life”
(from Vatican Radio)…