ARCHBISHOP JOSEPH KURTZ IS GUEST ON VATICAN INSIDER
Archbishop Josepk Kurtz of Louisville, president of the USCCB – United States Conference of Catholic Bishops – spoke to me in Rome in the middle of the second week of the synod on the family as the small language groups were meeting. Hear his report on both the talks in the synod hall the first week and what the work of the language groups entails.
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POPE FRANCIS TO RECEIVE HIGH HONOR FROM ISRAELI UNIVERSITY
Pope Francis is going to receive the highest honor of Israel’s Bar Ilan University, the Award of Distinction, according to an announcement today by the university. Bar Ilan said the honor, which will be presented at the Vatican on October 27, was to pay tribute to Francis’ “continual efforts and his commitment to building bridges between different worlds, promoting peace and harmony among nations and faiths, defending human rights and fighting for them.” The university also praised Pope Francis for his “contribution to understanding and tolerance between Christians and Jews and for the warmth he has shown towards the Jewish nation, especially during his official visit to Israel (earlier this year).” http://popefrancisnewsapp.com/
HOLY FATHER WORKING ON ENCYCLICAL ON CREATION
ANSA also reported that Pope Francis is working on his second encyclical. Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin on Thursday told the Pontifical University Antonianum on Thursday that the Pope’s new work is on the “protection of creation. The cardinal was speaking at the Antonianum during the presentation of Code 338, the only copy ever made of the Canticle of the Creatures by St. Francis. http://popefrancisnewsapp.com/
POPE WELCOMES ORIENTALE LUMEN FOUNDATION
Pope Francis on Friday welcomed members of the Orientale Lumen Foundation in America as they meet in Rome as part of an ecumenical pilgrimage. He told them that,
“every Christian pilgrimage is not only a geographical journey, but also and above all an opportunity to take a path of inner renewal taking us ever closer to Christ our Lord.” He added that, “these dimensions are absolutely essential in proceeding along the path that leads us to reconciliation and full communion among all believers in Christ. There is no true ecumenical dialogue without openness to inner renewal and the search for greater fidelity to Christ and to His will.”
Francis expressed his delight in learning that the pilgrims had decided to honor the memory of Popes St. John XXIII and St. John Paul II, saying “this decision underlines their great contribution to the development of ever closer relations between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Churches. The example of these two saints is without doubt enriching for all of us, since they always bore witness to an ardent passion for Christian unity”.
The Holy Father, noting his late November trip to Turkey, asked for prayers for his three-day pilgrimage, during which he will meet with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I. (source: VIS)
VATICAN HOSTS WORLD MEETING OF POPULAR MOVEMENTS
The Holy See Press Office this morning presented the World Meeting of Popular Movements, that will be held in Rome from October 27 to 29. The three-day event was organized by the Pontifical Council “Justice and Peace” in collaboration with the Pontifical Academy for Social Sciences and the leaders of various movements.
Presenters included Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of Justice and Peace, Archbishop Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo, chancellor of the Pontifical Academy for Social Sciences and Juan Grabois, head of the Confederation of Workers of the Popular Economy, dedicated principally to organizations and movements for the excluded and marginalized.
Grabois, who knew Pope Francis as archbishop of Buenos Aires, said that the then-Cardinal Bergoglio sympathized with the struggle of excluded workers in very difficult moments, and accompanied them in the work of assisting the cartoneros or peasants, who are forced to live on the streets and, in general, are the heirs of a crisis brought on by neo-liberal capitalism. “Francis summons us again today, from a universal perspective; he calls to the poor, organized in thousands of popular movements, to fight, without arrogance but with courage, without violence but with tenacity, for this dignity that has been taken from us, and for social justice.”
The World Meeting of Popular Movements will be attended by the social leaders of the five continents, representing organizations of increasingly excluded social sectors: workers in precarious employment conditions; migrants; temporary workers; the unemployed and the self-employed, without legal protection, labor rights or union recognition; peasants; the landless; indigenous peoples and those at risk of expulsion from the fields as a result of agricultural speculation and violence; and those who live in the peripheries and in temporary settlements, often migrants and displaced peoples, who are marginalized, forgotten, and without adequate urban infrastructure. Alongside them there are trades unions and social, charitable and human rights organizations, who have demonstrated their closeness to these movements and who, it has been suggested, might accompany them, respecting the role of grass-roots movements.
“The aims of this meeting include sharing Pope Francis’ thought on social matters, debating the causes of growing social inequality and the increase in exclusion throughout the world, reflecting on the organizational experiences of popular movements and the resolution of problems regarding land, housing and work, evaluating the role of movements in the processes of peace-building and care for the environment, especially in regions affected by conflicts and disputes over natural resources, discussing the relationship between popular movements and the Church, and how to go ahead in the creation of joint and permanent collaboration.”
Cardinal Turkson stated that it was essential for both the Church and the world to “listen to the cry for justice” from the excluded; “not only to the sufferings, but also to the expectations, hopes and proposals which the marginalised themselves have. They must be protagonists of their own lives, and not simply passive recipients of the charity or plans of others. They must be protagonists of the needed economic and social, political and cultural changes. … The Church wants to make its own the needs and aspirations of the popular movements, and to join with those who, by means of different initiatives, are making every effort to stimulate social change towards a more just world.” (VIS)