PAPAL ENCYCLICAL ON ENVIRONMENT TO BE PRESENTED JUNE 18

PAPAL ENCYCLICAL ON ENVIRONMENT TO BE PRESENTED JUNE 18

For those of you interested in what appears to be the most awaited papal document in decades, namely, Pope Francis’ “Laudato si” encyclical on the environment, the wait will be over Thursday morning at 12 noon.

A leaked version, an early draft, appeared on the website of an Italian news magazine and the journalist associated with that magazine, who made it available on his webpage and emailed it to his followers, has had his credentials suspended by the Vatican for breaking the embargo – namely, tomorrow morning at 12 at the press conference that accompanies the publication.

The journalist, Sandro Magister, said it was his superior who received and published the document and he was merely re-transmitting it.

Personally, as a journalist accredited to the Holy See, I understand the embargo as meaning I cannot publish the item in question before the embargo day and hour, no matter how I got the document – licitly via the Vatican’s embargoed web site, using my name and password, or in another manner.

Holy See Press Office director, Fr. Lombardi, said in a statement: “An Italian text of a draft of the Pope’s Encyclical ‘Laudato Si’ has been published. Please note that it is not the final text, and that the rules of the Embargo remain in place. We ask journalists to respect professional standards, which call for waiting for the official publication of the final text.”

The Vatican released the following on its news sites:

Accredited journalists have been informed that on Thursday, June 18, 2015 at 11 am in the New Synod Hall in Vatican City, a press conference will be held for the presentation of His Holiness Pope Francis’ Encyclical “- On the Care of our Common Home.”

The speakers will be: – Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson , President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace; – His Eminence Metropolitan John ( Zizioulas ) of Pergamon, representing the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Orthodox Church; – Prof. John Schellnhuber , Founding Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research; – Dr. Carolyn Woo , CEO and President of Catholic Relief Services and former dean of the Mendoza College of Business, University of Notre Dame, U.S.A.

A simultaneous translation service will be available in Italian, French, English, Spanish and from German. Following the presentations by the Speakers, a limited time will be available for questions from journalists.

The Vatican Television Centre will produce images live from the Press Conference. Additionally, the press conference may be followed via live audio-video streaming on the site: http://player.rv.va/ (Vatican Player of the Vatican Radio), where it will subsequently remain available on demand  – or on the CTV YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/ctvaticano , which offers only direct streaming during the event. Direct links to the same addresses are provided on the official site: vatican.va

The Encyclical is to be considered under full embargo until noon on Thursday, 18 June 2015.

Accredited journalists will find the text of the Encyclical in PDF format in the Reserved Area of the Holy See Press Office Bulletin web page from 6 p.m. Wednesday 17 June in Italian, French, English, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish and Arabic. In addition, an extensive summary of the Encyclical will be available on the site, in the same languages.

The paper copy of the Encyclical – in Italian, English and Spanish, at least – will be available to accredited journalists at the Press Office from 9 a.m. Thursday 18 June.

Note regarding access to the Synod Hall for journalists: Interested journalists, cameramen and photographers can request accreditation by email at accreditamenti@pressva.va . Those who are already accredited at the Press Office are invited to indicate their participation at the Accreditations Office, no later than Tuesday 16 June . Access to the Synod Hall is via Piazzale del Petriano. Cameramen are required to arrive 30 minutes in advance, photographers 15 minutes. Journalists are invited to take their seats in the Hall ten minutes before the beginning of the Press Conference.

What I find interesting:

–         This is the first time in my memory and experience that I am aware of a papal document being presented some place other than the press office.

–         The press conference starts at 11 but this Vatican statement refers to the embargo as being 12 noon.

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