Global Church: July 2006 Archives

The Church Around the World


One of my favorite news agencies is Fides News, a service associated with the Catholic Church's Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith. Fides carries news from all over the world, giving an "on the ground" Catholic perspective on world events. From natural disasters, wars and famines to new seminaries, schools and hospitals and addresses from bishops in third world countries, Fides gives an account of what's going in the world and how the Church is ministering to those those affected by these events.

Here's a sample of some recent news items, follow the links for the whole stories:

  • From the Democratic Republic of Congo
    Repeated violence in east Congo is causing tens of thousands to abandon homes and fields. Warned that food supplies will soon run out the United Nations World Food Programme has launched an urgent call to international donors to give more funds assist these suffering people. The situation is most serious in Gety, in Ituri province, where 38,000 displaced persons are sheltering. On July 14 WFP took two week food rations from its stores at Bunia to distribute to 30,000 people in Gety, but now its supplies are almost finished and more funds are urgently needed.

  • From Israel
    St John of God Catholic Hospital in Nazareth was the first to give emergency treatment to victims of an attack on the town a week ago in the present conflict. At about 5pm on Wednesday 19 July, re-named Nazareth’s black Wednesday, without any warning three Katyusha rockets suddenly landed in the Bilal district of the Arab part of the town hitting a mosque in front of which several children were playing.

  • From East Timor
    If more young men ask to serve the Lord and consecrate their lives to service of the Church and the people in East Timor, there is still hope for the youngest democracy in Asia, despite conditions of political and social instability. The occasion of the solemn profession of new Salesians di Camilo Boavida and Venancio Fatima Freitas was in fact a festive event for the whole community in Baucau. People put aside their daily worries and anxieties to share in the joy of the two young men called by God to follow in the footsteps of Saint John Bosco.

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Of course it was worth it


Journalist and long time St. Blogger Robert Duncan has a great article about the World Meeting of Families over at Spero news.

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Theological-Pastoral Congress on the Family


Not to be forgotten amidst the coverage of the Pope's visit last week to Valencia, Spain for the 5th World Meeting of Families was the theological congress that preceded it.

Here is Zenit's coverage of the opening proceedings.

Cardinal Carlo Caffarra, archbishop of Bologna, Italy, gave the address, in which he said "[t]here is no doubt that the clear perception of the value, of the very preciousness of marriage, is today being gradually obscured."

"In my judgment, the most emblematic event of this obscuring is that on Jan. 18, 2006, with 468 votes in favor, 149 opposed and 41 abstentions, the European Parliament approved a resolution which calls for equating homosexual couples with those of man and woman and condemns as homophobic those states and countries that are opposed to the recognition of gay couples," lamented Cardinal Caffarra.

More coverage:

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Here's a quick roundup of coverage of Pope Benedict XVI's visit to Valencia, Spain to close the 5th World Meeting of Families.

  • The Vatican website has the texts of the Holy Father's addresses. Some snips from the major addresses appear at the end of this post.

  • Estimates on attendance at the Sunday Mass range from several hundred thousand to 1.5 million. Spanish president Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero was conspicuously though not exactly surprisingly absent from the Mass. The whole world knows where his sympathies rest, and he felt no need to make a show otherwise.

  • In addition to the major addresses, the Pope made a stop to lay a wreath at the site of last week's train cash that killed 41 people earlier. The Pope later met with families of victims of the crash and prayed an Our Father with them. Here's a particularly moving picture of that encounter.

  • The best pictures of the trip I've found are here. Most of the pics are screen captures posted by devoted Benedict fans.

  • John Allen was in Valencia for the Holy Father's visit, and as always provides detailed coverage. His reports can be found here and here.

  • Click on the link below for excerpts of the Holy Father's major addresses. Better yet, click here and read 'em all.

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MCs Always Take the Toughest Jobs


This is a stale piece from May, but I haven't seen it around much:

Missionaries of Charity open shop in Kabul.

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Blogging Bishops


The Spanish bishops are getting with the times.

The Spanish bishops conference has set up a blog (Spanish only, sorry) where the bishops will be live-blogging the World Meeting of Families.

As a reminder, the homepage of the meeting - whose theme is "Transmission of the Faith in the Family" - can be found here.

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World Meeting of Families


This week, the Catholic spotlight will be on Valencia, Spain where an International Family Fair, catechesis and theological forums are taking place leading up to next weekends's Fifth World Meeting of Families.

This past Sunday, Pope Benedict dedicated his weekly Angelus address to reflecting on the meaning of the event:

In short, the family is a living organism, where a mutual exchange of gifts takes place. What is important is that the word of God, which keeps the flame of faith alive, never be lacking. With a particularly significant gesture, during the rite of baptism, the godfather or godmother lights a candle from the great paschal candle, symbol of the risen Christ and then the celebrant says: "To you, parents and godparents, is entrusted the task of guarding this light so that this child, illuminated by Christ, may always live as a child of the light."

If this gesture, in which the whole meaning of the transmission of the faith in the family lies, is to be authentic, it must be preceded and accompanied by the parents' commitment to further their own knowledge of the faith, rekindling the flame with prayer and the assiduous practice of the sacraments of confession and the Eucharist.

Let us commend to the Virgin Mary the success of the forthcoming great Valencia meeting, and of all the families of the world so that they will be genuine communities of love and life, in which the flame of faith is transmitted from generation to generation.

On a sadder note, 41 people died in a subway accident in Valencia on Monday. Please pray for the repose of the soul of all killed and for peace of mind for all affected.

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Global Church category from July 2006.

Global Church: May 2006 is the previous archive.

Global Church: August 2006 is the next archive.

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