POPE JOHN PAUL I – A MIRACLE CLEARS HIM FOR BEATIFICATION

I absolutely love today’s top news story! I was only in the presence of John Paul I at his inaugural Mass because several days later I left for three months to work at the New York Times’ Cairo office. I did not therefore follow his papacy because in those days there was no internet, no email, no online news as there was no online! The daily edition of the NYT appeared in Cairo and I could keep up with the news of his pontificate and could also read stories that appeared in other publications of other U.S. and international media as we were all housed in the same media center in Cairo.

I learned a great deal about John Paul I when I returned to Rome but one thing to know: he was not John Paul I at the time. He only became that after John Paul II was elected and took that double name and the Roman numeral II.

Pope Francis, for example is not Francis I but would become so only if there was a Francis II.

My favorite story is the one told where one day, John Paul was signing one of his first documents in Latin, writing Joannes Paulus I, and the secretary or assistant who was near him said, “Holy Father, you do not need to write John Paul I – there is no I.” To which the Pope replied, smiling, “There will be a John Paul II.”

And there was, just about month later!

What I learned about Cardinal Albino Luciani from reading news stories and books over the years (and from talking to a niece of his who worked at the Holy See Press Office) made me so wish we had had much more time with him. I know I would have read his speeches, homilies and other writings with rapt attention and I am sure I’d have felt the same way in his presence. If you can get an English language copy of John Paul I’s “Illustrissimi,” do it!

And how could one not smile when in the presence of the Smiling Pope!

POPE JOHN PAUL I – A MIRACLE CLEARS HIM FOR BEATIFICATION

Pope Francis has authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the decree on a miraculous healing attributed to the intercession of Pope John Paul I.

Vatican News

Pope Francis on Wednesday received in audience Cardinal Marcello Semeraro, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, and authorized his dicastery to promulgate the decree recognizing a miracle attributed to the intercession of Albino Luciani who became Pope John Paul I.

The miracle
The Congregation’s website says it is about the healing of an eleven-year-old girl at the end of her life with “severe acute inflammatory encephalopathy, a malignant refractory epileptic illness and septic shock”.  Her situation was very serious, characterized by numerous daily seizures and a septic state of bronchopneumonia. The initiative to invoke the Pope had been taken by the parish priest of the parish under whose jurisdiction was the hospital.

So for Pope John Paul I, who hailed from the northern Italian region of Veneto, the way to beatification has been cleared and Pope Francis will decide upon a date for the ceremony.

Priesthood
Born on October 17, 1912 in Forno di Canale (today Canale d’Agordo), in the province of Belluno, and died on September 28, 1978 in the Vatican, Albino Luciani was Pope for only 34 days, one of the shortest pontificates in history. He was the son of a socialist worker who had worked for a long time as an emigrant in Switzerland.

In a letter written to Luciani granting him permission to enter the seminary, his father wrote: “I hope that when you become a priest, you will be on the side of the poor, because Christ was on their side” – words that Luciani would put into practice all his life.

Albino was ordained priest in 1935 and in 1958, immediately after the election of John XXIII, who as the Patriarch of Venice knew the him, was appointed bishop of Vittorio Veneto. Son of a land facing emigration due to poverty, but very lively from the social point of view, and of a Church characterized by the figures of great priests, Luciani participated in the entire Second Vatican Council and applied its directives with enthusiasm.

Contraception
A pastor close to his people, he spent a lot of time in the confessional.  During the years the lawfulness of the contraceptive pill was being discussed, he listened to many young families and repeatedly expressed himself in favour of an opening of the Church on its use.

In 1968, when Pope Paul VI released his encyclical Humanae Vitae, declaring the use of the contraceptive pill morally illicit, the Bishop of Vittorio Veneto promoted the document, adhering to the Pontiff’s magisterium.  Pope Paul VI, who appreciated him, appointed him the Patriarch of Venice in 1969 and later made him a cardinal in March 1973.

The people’s pastor
Luciani, who chose the word “humilitas” [humility] for his episcopal coat of arms, is a pastor who lived soberly, firm in what was essential in the faith, open from the social point of view, close to the poor and the workers. He was rigid when it came to the unscrupulous use of money to the detriment of the people, as was demonstrated by his firmness on the occasion of an economic scandal in Vittorio Veneto involving one of his priests.  In his magisterium, he particularly insisted on the theme of mercy.

As Patriarch of Venice, he suffered a lot because of the protests that marked the years following  Vatican II.  In Christmas of 1976, when the factories of the industrial centre of Marghera were occupied, he pronounced words which are still very relevant today. “Showing off luxury, wasting money, refusing to invest it, stashing it away abroad, does not only constitute insensitivity and egoism: it can become provocation and weigh on our heads what Pope Paul VI calls ‘the wrath of the poor with unpredictable consequences'”.

A great communicator, he wrote an acclaimed book entitled “Illustrissimi,” which contains letters he wrote to the great personalities of the past with judgments on the present. For him, catechesis was of particular importance and the need for those who transmit the contents of the faith to be understood by all.

After the death of Paul VI, on 26 August 1978 he was elected in a conclave that lasted one day.  The double name he assumed on his election was in itself a programme.  By combining John and Paul, he not only offers a tribute of gratitude to the Popes who wanted him as bishop and cardinal, but also marked a path of continuity in the application of the Council, barring the way both to nostalgic retreats into the past and uncontrolled leaps forward.

He abandoned the use of the royal plural, “We”, and in the early days refused the use of the gestatorial chair, bowing to the request of his collaborators only when he realized that by proceeding on foot people who were not in the front rows had difficulty seeing him.

The Wednesday general audiences during his very brief pontificate were catechetical meetings.  He spoke without a written text, quoted poems from memory, invited a boy and an altar boy to approach him and talked to them.

In an impromptu speech, he recalled having suffered hunger as a child and repeated his predecessor’s courageous words about the “people of hunger” who challenge the “people of opulence”. He went out only once from the Vatican, in the sultry weeks of late summer 1978, to take possession of the cathedral of St. John Lateran, of his Diocese of Rome as Pontiff.  There, he received the homage of the mayor of Rome, Giulio Carlo Argan, a communist, to whom the new Pope quoted the Catechism of St. Pius X, recalling that among “the sins that cry out for vengeance in the sight of God” are “oppressing the poor” and “defrauding workers of their just wages”.

Death
Pope John Paul I died suddenly on the night of September 28, 1978. He was found lifeless by the nun who brought coffee to his room every morning. In just a few weeks of his pontificate, he had entered the hearts of millions of people for his simplicity, his humility, his words in defence of the least and his evangelical smile.

Several theories of alleged conspiracies on his sudden and unexpected death were built that served to sell books and produce films. A documented study of the death, which definitively closes the case, was signed by the vice-postulator of the beatification process, Stefania Falasca (Cronaca di una morte, Libreria Editrice Vaticana).

The reputation of the holiness of Pope John Paul I spread very quickly. Many people have prayed and are praying to him. Many simple people and even the bishops of Brazil asked for the opening of his sainthood cause, a long procedure that has now concluded.

WELCOME CHRIST’S GIFT OF HOPE IN DIFFICULT TIMES – THERE’S ALSO THIS….

WELCOME CHRIST’S GIFT OF HOPE IN DIFFICULT TIMES

In his final general audience to be streamed live from the papal library in the Apostolic Palace because of the coronavirus pandemic, Pope Francis continued his catechesis on healing the world and made the universal destination of goods and the virtue of hope his focus.

He asked the faithful to “welcome the gift of hope that comes from Christ,” especially in times when so many “risk losing hope.” It is Christ, he said, who “helps us to navigate the tumultuous waters of sickness, death and injustice, which do not have the last word over our final destination.”

“Dear Brothers and Sisters,” said the Holy Father, “In our continuing reflections on the effects of the current pandemic, we have seen how our world’s problems are becoming ever more evident and indeed more serious. Among these is social inequality, itself the fruit of an unjust global economy that creates boundless wealth for a relative few and greater impoverishment for the rest of our human family.”

Francis explained that, “In God’s plan, the earth was created as a garden, to be cultivated, not brutally exploited. As stewards of creation, we are called to ensure that its fruits, which are destined for all, are in fact shared by all. The Church reminds us that the principle of the subordination of private property to the universal destination of goods is the first principle of the whole ethical and social order.”

The Pope stated, “When millions of people lack access to primary goods, when inequality and lack of opportunity threaten the very fabric of society, and when greed endangers the very environment in which we live, none of us can stand by idly.”

He stressed that, “Christian hope, which trusts in the transforming grace of the risen Christ, impels us to work for the healing of our world and the building of a more just and equitable social order.

Concluding, Pope Francis invited the faithful to “think about the children”, so many of whom are suffering due to this unjust economic system. Many are dying, hungry, lacking the opportunity to an education. After the crisis, he stressed, we must be better.

In language greetings following the catechesis, Pope Francis had special words for the Polish faithful: “I cordially greet all the Poles. Dear brothers and sisters, today the Church in Poland celebrates the solemnity of the Black Madonna of Czestochowa. Carrying the memory of my visit to that shrine alive in my heart four years ago on the occasion of WYD, today I join the thousands and thousands of pilgrims who gather there, together with the Polish Episcopate, to entrust themselves, their families, all humanity to her maternal protection. Pray to the Blessed Mother, to intercede for all of us, and especially for those who in various ways suffer from the pandemic, and bring them relief. Please pray for me too. God bless you!”

THERE’S ALSO THIS….

SAINT MOTHER TERESA was born on August 26, 1910 so today is the 110th anniversary of her birth!

CARDINAL ALBINO LUCIANI, PATRIARCH OF VENICE WAS ELECTED TO THE PAPACY 42 years ago today, taking the name John Paul, the first Pope ever to have a double name. He was also the first pope to abandon the coronation ceremony, not wearing the triple tiara. The Eucharistic celebration thus became the first papal inauguration ceremony. He was the last Pope to use the sedia gestatoria, the elevated chair by which Popes were formerly carried into rooms. He was the first Pope born in the 20th century, and the last Pope to die in the 20th century, after a pontificate of only 33 days, dying of a heart attack on September 28. He was not known as John Paul I until Cardinal Wojtyla succeeded him and took the name John Paul II.

I was in Rome when he was elected. Years after his death, a priest friend in the Vatican told me that one day early in his brief pontificate, the Pope was signing a document. A priest assistant was at his side as he wrote, in Latin, Joannes Paulus I – John Paul I – and said “Your Holiness, you would only be John Paul I if there was a John Paul II. Pope Luciani looked up, smiling, and said, “There will be a John Paul II!”

For more: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2020-08/pope-john-paul-i-election-anniversary-42-years.html

GENERAL AUDIENCES WITH FAITHFUL TO RESUME SEPTEMBER 2:   The Prefecture of the Pontifical Household announced today that as of Wednesday, September 2, Pope Francis’s general audience will once again take place “with the participation of the faithful.” Following the hygiene directives issued by the competent authorities, the audiences for the month of September will be held in the Apostolic Palace’s San Damaso courtyard. They are open to anyone who wishes to participate and no ticket is necessary. Audiences will start at 9:30 am. Entry will be through the Bronze Gate under the right colonnade of St Peter’s Square starting at 7:30 am.

VATICAN NEWS FEATURED MELANIA TRUMP: “Republican Convention: Melania Trump appeals for racial unity – First Lady Melania Trump appeals for racial harmony and expresses compassion for those affected by the Coronavirus pandemic on the second day of the Republican party convention.” To read more: https://www.vaticannews.va/en/world/news/2020-08/republican-convention-melania-trump-appeals-for-racial-unity.html</a

10TH VATICAN EMPLOYEE POSITIVE WITH COVID-19 – POPE FRANCIS ESTABLISHES THE JOHN PAUL I VATICAN FOUNDATION – JOHN PAUL I STILL RELEVANT TODAY

I am so happy to hear the news about the John Paul I Vatican Foundation. I was in Rome when he was elected and for the Mass starting his far too brief pontificate. I was in Cairo, Egypt when he died and for the election of his successor, John Paul II.   I’ve previously told that story on these pages – days and week that were unforgettable in a thousand ways!

If you want to read something totally delightful, get Albino Luciani’s “Illustrissimi,” a collection of 40 letters written over several years to people, historic and fictional, including Pinocchio, Jesus Christ, Charles Dickens, Maria Theresa of Austria, Mark Twain, G.K. Chesteron and King David

Cardinal Pietro Parolin has written a piece about John Paul I and I include that in today’s news. I especially imagine it will be relevant for those of you who may not have known John Paul I, his character and personality and his pontificate.

By the way, at his morning Mass today, Pope Francis prayed that people will prudently adhere to measures put in place for the easing of the quarantine so that the Covid-19 pandemic does not return.

I write about Italy’s Phase Two plan in a separate post.

10TH VATICAN EMPLOYEE POSITIVE WITH COVID-19

Statement by Holy See Press Office Director, Matteo Bruni: In recent days, another employee was found to be positive with Covid-19. The person had presented symptoms in March and remained in solitary confinement, continuing to work remotely. Having no symptoms, the employee is now in quarantine and the necessary health measures for the workplace have been taken as a precaution and checks have been carried out among colleagues, with negative results.

POPE FRANCIS ESTABLISHES THE JOHN PAUL I VATICAN FOUNDATION

The Vatican today published a rescript by Pope Francis, made following a February 10 audience with Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, that established the institution of the John Paul I Vatican Foundation. It will have a juridic personality in both civil and canon law and an office within the Secretariat of State. The Foundation was officially established on February 17.

Born Albino Luciani in northern Italy, John Paul I was the archbishop of Venice when elected to the papacy on August 26, 1978, following the death of his predecessor, Pope Paul VI. Known as the “smiling pope,” Luciani was the first Pope in history to have a double name, selecting the names of his two predecessors John XXIII and Paul VI. He died on September 28 after a pontificate of only 33 days.

During his pontificate he was known as Pope John Paul. He became John Paul I when a second John Paul was elected on October 16, 1978.

According to a Holy See communiqué, “The purpose of the Foundation is to enhance and spread the knowledge of the thought, works and example of Pope John Paul I.” It will “protect and preserve the cultural and religious heritage left by Pope John Paul I; promote initiatives such as conferences, meetings, seminars, and study sessions; establish awards and scholarships; take care of the publishing activity by publishing both the results of its own studies and research, and works by third parties; propose itself as a reference point, in Italy and abroad, for those operating in the same area and with the same purposes (Articles of Association, art. 2).” Cardinal Parolin was named president of the John Paul I Vatican Foundation. Members include Dr. Lina Petri, a retired Holy See Press Office employee and niece of John Paul I.

JOHN PAUL I STILL RELEVANT TODAY

Pope Francis establishes a John Paul I Vatican Foundation presided over by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Secretary of State.

By Cardinal Pietro Parolin

The Holy Father established the Vatican John Paul I Foundation on 17 February. This was done in response to the proposal made to create a body destined to deepen the person, thoughts and teachings of John Paul I (26 August 1978 – 28 September 1978) .

Pope John Paul I was, and remains, a point of reference in the history of the universal Church. His importance, as Saint John Paul II had pointed out, is inversely proportional to the length of his very short pontificate: “magis ostentus quam datus.

The story of Albino Luciani is one of a pastor who is close to his people, centered on the essentials of faith and with an extraordinary social sensitivity. His magisterium is contemporary: proximity, humility, simplicity, insistence on God’s mercy, love of one’s neighbour and solidarity are the salient features.

He was a bishop who lived and applied the experience of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council. In his brief pontificate, he led the Church along the magisterial paths indicated by this Council: going back to the sources of the Gospel and a renewed missionary spirit, episcopal collegiality, service in ecclesial poverty, the search for Christian unity, interreligious dialogue, dialogue with the modern world and international dialogue, all conducted with perseverance and determination, in favour of justice and peace.

I think, for example, of his general audiences and his persistence on ecclesial poverty, universal brotherhood and active love for the poor. Along with the traditional precepts of the Church, he wanted to include a precept on works of solidarity, which he had proposed to the Italian bishops.

I am thinking also of the appeal he made during his Angelus of 10 September 1978 in which he asked for peace in the Middle East and addressed his prayer invitation to Presidents of different faiths. He had already made this appeal in his speech to the Diplomatic Corps on 31 August, during which he freed himself from presumptions of geopolitical protagonism and defined the nature and peculiarity of the diplomatic action of the Holy See from a viewpoint of faith.

Receiving then the more than one hundred representatives of the international missions present at the inauguration of his pontificate, he stressed how “our heart is open to all peoples, all cultures and all races.” He then affirmed: “We certainly do not have miraculous solutions to the world’s great problems, but we can nevertheless give something very precious: a spirit that helps to solve these problems and places them in the essential dimension, that of openness to the values of universal charity… so that the Church, humble messenger of the Gospel to all the peoples of the earth, can contribute to creating a climate of justice, brotherhood, solidarity and hope without which the world cannot live”.

And so, following in the footsteps of the Council’s Pastoral Constitution Gaudium et Spes, and in so many messages of Saint Paul VI, he acted in the wake of the great diplomacy that has given so many fruits to the Church, by nourishing Her with charity.

This history of the Church, dedicated to serving the world, was not interrupted with his sudden death. The perspective marked by his brief pontificate was not a side note. Although John Paul I’s governance of the Church could not unfold in time, he helped – explevit tempora multa – to strengthen the design of a Church that is close to the pain of the people and their thirst for charity.

Through John Paul I’s cause for canonisation, numerous sources have been accumulated today, beginning an important work of research and elaboration from a historical and historiographical perspective. It is now possible, therefore, to bequeath the memory of Pope Luciani, so that its historical value can be fully restored within the historical period. It can now be examined with the analytical rigor that is due to him and may open up new perspectives of study on his work.

In this regard, the establishment of a new ad hoc Foundation can rightfully fulfil the task not only of protecting the entire patrimony of the writings and works of John Paul I, but also of encouraging the systematic study and diffusion of his thought and spirituality – all the more motivated by the consideration of how his person and his message are extraordinarily relevant.

POPE JOHN PAUL I, THE SMILING POPE, ON PATH TO SAINTHOOD – POPE ASKS VATICAN STORE TO STOP SELLING CIGARETTES – IN BRIEF

I am delighted to hear the news about Pope John Paul I! I was in his presence only a few times, the first being at the Mass that started his pontificate, and I remember thinking what a warm, smiley human being he was! Looking at closeups of the Mass, both photos and film, I even noticed what to me was a twinkle in his eyes! Most observers commented on his captivating, contagious smile and he was immediately called ‘the smiling Pope.’  I remember thinking, “he probably smiles in his sleep!”

I was in Rome when he was elected but in Cairo, Egypt when he died. When we heard the news in Cairo over BBC radio, we thought for sure the reporters were behind the times and that they were referring to Paul VI who had died on August 6. But no, they were referring to the new Pope, John Paul I who died after only 33 days of pontificate!

I was still in Cairo when John Paul II was elected – another story for another time.

One of my favorite stories from all those decades ago was the report that one day Pope John Paul was asked to sign a document and he wrote his name in Latin and placed the Roman numeral I beside it. A secretary or some official said, “But Holiness, there is no I after your name.” And John Paul is said to have replied, “There will be a John Paul II.”

John Paul only became John Paul I when there was indeed a John Paul II. The same for Pope Francis. He does not use a Roman numeral (even though he is the first to use the name Francis) but if there is another Francis, that Pope would be Francis II and the current one Francis I.  Hopefully that is clear!

As Cardinal Patriarch of Venice, Albino Luciani wrote a book entitled “Illustrissimi,” a wonderful series of letters he penned to people, known and lesser known, real and fictitious, including Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, G.K.Chesterton, Maria Theresa of Austria, Charles Peguy, Trilussa, St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Johan Wolfgang von Goethe, King David, Penelope, Figaro, The Pickwick Club and Pinocchio. They were warm and witty and Cardinal Luciani always made a point in each letter – about life, religion, business, fashion, etc.  For some great reading, try to find a copy!

Released just two days ago, a new book outlines details about the death of Pope John Paul I, new information that confirms that his death was the result of a heart attack, as previously held, thus debunking theories that the pontiff was killed in his sleep.Papa Luciani: Chronicle of a Death is by Vatican journalist Stefania Falasca.

POPE JOHN PAUL I, THE SMILING POPE, ON PATH TO SAINTHOOD

(Vatican Radio) Pope John Paul I has moved a step closer to sainthood with the recognition of his heroic virtues.  Pope Francis on Wednesday authorized the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to promulgate the decree approving his predecessor’s heroic virtues which confers on him the title ‘Venerable’. 

Pope Francis also authorized 7 other decrees along with that of John Paul I – two of them on martyrdom and 5 on heroic virtues.

Pope John Paul I whose heroic virtues Pope Francis has approved and declared him ‘Venerable Servant of God’ had a brief papacy of just 33 days, yet has left an indelible mark on the Catholic Church.

The ‘Smiling Pope’, as he is called in that short duration of his pontificate, gave nine speeches, three messages, wrote three Apostolic letters and four other official letters, gave two homilies and had five Sunday ‘Angelus’ prayers and four Wednesday general audiences. This short encounter, as well as his vast experience as a priest, bishop, Patriarch of Venice and then Cardinal, proved him to be a person of faith, humble and meek person yet tough when it comes to Church teachings.   Love of God and love of neighbor was his special hallmark.

Born on October 17, 1912 at Forno di Canale (Belluno, Italy), Albino Luciani was the son of Giovanni Luciani and Bortola Tancon. He  was baptized the same day at home by the midwife as he was in danger of death but formalized two days later in the Church by the curate. On February 2, 1935 he was ordained deacon and on July 7, 1935 ordained to the priesthood at St. Peter’s Church of Belluno diocese of Belluno e Feltre.

In February 1947 he graduated from the Gregorian University in Rome with a doctorate in Sacred Theology. His thesis was, “The origin of the human soul according to Antonio Rosmini”. On December 27, 1958 he was Consecrated Bishop by John XXIII at St. Peter’s Basilica together with the newly consecrated bishops, Gioacchino Muccin and Girolamo Bortignon.

In 1977 he participated in the IV Ordinary General Assembly in Rome of the Synod of Bishops regarding “Catechetics in Our Time”. August 10, 1978 brought him again to the Vatican after the death of Pope Paul the VI.

On August 26, during the second day of the conclave, he was elected Supreme Pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church and he chose his name John Paul I, wishing to serve the Church as his predecessors did. During his first Sunday Angelus, he humbly acknowledged that he chose that name knowing that he neither had the wisdom of the heart of Pope John nor the preparation and culture of Pope Paul. With this name he became the first Pope to take up a dual name in papal history.

Luciani vowed to serve as a teacher and a servant and had taken up Humilitas (Humility) as his episcopal motto which was evident even after he was appointed a pope.  He wished to do away with the papal coronation mass and chose to have just a papal inauguration. He also preferred not to use the ‘sedia gestatoria’ or the ceremonial throne like an armchair on which the Pope travels from St Peter’s Square.

Luciani, a warm, gentle and kind man with a friendly disposition, was loved by the people who were in awe of his persona. He had impressed people with his excellent oratory skills.  His ideologies reflected the spirit of humanity and showcased the immense love and warmth that he had for God and his people.

His swift six-point plan defined what the journey of his pontificate would be. He planned to renew the Church through the policies implemented by Vatican II, to revise canon law, to remind the Church of its duty to preach the Gospel, to promote Church unity without watering down doctrine, to promote dialogue and to encourage world peace and social justice.

His successors looked upon him as a gentle soul with a heart filled with love. If his immediate successor Cardinal Karol Wojtyła spoke of his values of faith, hope and love, Benedict XVI commented that it was due to his virtues that despite holding papacy for just 33 days, he was able to win the people’s hearts. For Pope Francis, John Paul I was an icon of mercy and humility and he has quoted him in his homilies and in an interview. His qualities of heart and mind made him affable.

Already two miracles are attributed to his intercession and are under examination. If any of them is recognized, he would be cleared for beatification.

POPE ASKS VATICAN STORE TO STOP SELLING CIGARETTES

From Holy See Press Office Director Greg Burke:

The Holy Father has decided that the Vatican will cease to sell cigarettes to employees as of 2018. The reason is very simple: the Holy See cannot contribute to an activity that clearly damages the health of people. According to the World Health Organization, every year smoking is the cause of more than seven million deaths throughout the world.

Although the cigarettes sold to employees and pensioners in the Vatican at a reduced price are a source of revenue for the Holy See, no profit can be legitimate if it puts lives at risk.

IN BRIEF

Pope Francis has sent a message to participants at a conference taking place in Rome on the theme ‘Pope Paul VI, the pope of modernity”. In the message Pope Francis notes that the conference is taking place 50 years after the publication of his predecessor’s encyclical ‘Popolorum Progressio’, often described as one of the key Catholic Social Teaching documents. That encyclical, he said, sought to be a “solemn appeal for concerted action in favour of integral human development”. The appeal remains just as urgent today, Pope Francis said, as poverty increases and peace is threatened on a daily basis in different parts of the world..

At 10.00 this morning the Holy Father Francis received in audience H.E. Mr. San Lwin, ambassador of the Republic of the union of Myanmar, on the occasion of the presentation of his Credential Letters. Myanmar is on the upcoming papal travel schedule, as he will be visiting Myanmar and Bangladesh, Nov.ember 27 to December 2.

During his upcoming apostolic visit to Bangladesh, Pope Francis will ordain 16 priests.   The Pope, who will visit Myanmar and Bangladesh, Nov. 27 – Dec. 2, will ordain the new priests on December 1 during an open-air morning Mass nat Suharawardy Udyan Park in the capital of Dhaka.  Some 10,000 people are expected to attend the Mass. There is only one seminary in Bangladesh, Holy Spirit Major Seminary. ‎ Ten of the future priests are diocesan, one is an Oblate of Mary Immaculate (OMI) and 5 are members of the Congregation of Holy Cross (CSC).