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Day: June 17, 2017

Pope’s India visit could be postponed to 2018 – Card. Gracias ?

It is very likely that the visit of Pope Francis to India and Bangladesh planned for the end of this year, could be postponed to next year, a prominent Indian Catholic Church leader said on Thursday.  In an interview to National Catholic Reporter (NCR) on June 15, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, Archbishop of Bombay said that discussions with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government about a papal visit this year have taken longer than expected. 
” I am beginning to lose hope about 2017 ,” said the cardinal who is the president of both the Latin-rite bishops’ group, the Conference of Catholic Bishops of India (CCBI), as well as the  Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC).  “We are already in June. Even if they suddenly say, ‘Come,’ it is a pastoral visit … [it] will take several months for the dioceses to prepare the people,” Card. Gracias said.  “It should not just be a flash in the pan, he comes and goes,” he said, explaining that when Pope St. John Paul II visited India in 1999, the Indian bishops “planned for almost a year before he came to make it effective.”
Pope Francis first hinted about a possible visit to India and Bangladesh in 2017 during and in-flight press conference on October 2, 2016, while returning from a visit to Azerbaijan.  Again in an interview to German weekly Die Zeit in March, the Pope spoke about his visit to India and Bangladesh, without giving dates.  Earlier, Bangladeshi Cardinal Patrick D’Rozario had told reporters that given the weather conditions of Bangladesh, October-November would be ideal for a papal visit.  
Second papal visit to be postponed this year
The India-Bangladesh visit would be the second papal visit to be postponed this year, after that of South Sudan.  Originally planned for autumn this year, the Vatican confirmed on May 30 that the visit to the war-torn African nation wound not  take place in 2017.  South Sudan’s deteriorating security situation obviously appeared to be reason.
Card. Gracias told NCR that working with the Indian government to prepare the papal visit has been “a little bit of ‎a difficult situation” as Modi’s calendar has been filled up with state visits from other leaders .‎  ‎”We have to find a good spot where we can give the Holy Father his due importance and respect,” Card. Gracias ‎said.‎  (Source: NCR)
(from Vatican Radio)…

Pope Francis sends condolences upon death of Helmut Kohl

(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis sent his condolences on Saturday to German Chancellor Angela Merkel upon the death of her predecessor, former Chancellor Helmut Kohl.
Helmut Kohl died on Friday at the age of 87, having served as Chancellor from 1982 to 1998.
In a telegramme, the Pope sends his “heartfelt condolences” for the loss of the “Chancellor of Unity”.
“Chancellor Kohl, that great statesman and convinced European, worked with far-sightedness and dedication for the good of the German people and those in neighboring European countries.”
The Holy Father prayed that “Merciful God reward him for his tireless efforts in favour of the unity of Germany and the European Union, as well as for his commitment to peace and reconciliation.”
He closed the telegramme with a prayer that the Lord give him “eternal joy and life in the heavenly Fatherland” and extended to all who mourn ex-Chancellor Kohl the blessings of God.
(from Vatican Radio)…

Pope Francis meets with German Chancellor Angela Merkel

(Vatican Radio)  Pope Francis met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her husband on Saturday in a private audience at the Vatican Apostolic Palace.
A communique from the Holy See Press Office called their discussions “cordial” and said they spoke about “the good relations and fruitful collaboration between the Holy See and Germany”.
“They then spoke about questions of common interest, with particular consideration given to the upcoming meeting of the G20 in Hamburg, and they agreed on the need to dedicate special attention to the responsibility of the international community towards counteracting poverty and hunger, the global threat of terrorism, and climate change.”
During the course of their discussions, Pope Francis and Chancellor Merkel also recalled the “tireless efforts” of the late German Chancellor Helmut Kohl “towards the reunification of Germany and the unity of Europe”.
After meeting with Pope Francis, Chancellor Merkel met with Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican Secretary of State, and Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, Secretary for Relations with States.
(from Vatican Radio)…

Decrees of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Friday received in his Audience His  Eminence Cardinal Angelo Amato, S.D.B., Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.

During the meeting, the Holy Father authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the Decrees concerning:

– the martyrdom of the Venerable Servant of God Teresio Olivelli, Laity; Killed in hatred of the Faith on January 17, 1945;

The heroic virtues of the Servant of God, Antonio Giuseppe De Sousa Barroso, Bishop of Porto; Born on 5 November 1854 and died on August 31, 1918;

– the heroic virtues of the Servant of God Joseph of Jesus López y González, Bishop of Aguas Calientes and Founder of the Congregation of the Maestro Catholic Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus; Born on 16 October 1872 and died on November 11, 1950;

– the heroic virtues of the Servant of God, Agostino Ernesto Castrillo, Bishop of San Marco Argentano-Bisignano, of the Order of Friars Minor; Born on 18 February 1904 and died on October 16, 1955;

– the heroic virtues of the Servant of God James of Balduina (Benjamin Filon), professor priest of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchins; Born on 2 August 1900 and died on July 21, 1948;

– the heroic virtues of the Servant of God, Mary of Angels ( Giuseppa Operti), professed monk of the Order of the Barmen Carmelites and founder of the Carmelite Sisters of Santa Teresa of Turin; Born on 16 November 1871 and dead on October 7, 1949;

– heroic virtues of the Servant of God Humility Patlán Sánchez (Mary), Sister of the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception; Born March 17, 1895 and died on June 17, 1970.
(from Vatican Radio)…

Pope Francis sends condolences to London fire victims

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has sent a message of condolence to the victims and families of the Grenfall Tower fire in London. In the message signed by Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Holy Father says he was “saddened to learn of the devastating fire in London and of the tragic loss of life and injury.” He also praised the efforts of the emergency services in reponding to the tragedy.
Below find the Pope’s message addressed to Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster.
His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols
Archbishop of Westminster
His Holiness Pope Francis was saddened to learn of the devastating fire in London and of the tragic loss of life and injury. He entrusts the souls of those who have died to the Lord’s loving mercy and offers his heartfelt condolences to their families.  With appreciation for the brave efforts of the emergency service personnel and all committed to supporting those who have lost their homes, His Holiness invokes upon the local community God’s blessings of strength and peace. 
Cardinal Pietro Parolin
Secretary of State
(from Vatican Radio)…