Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 31 n° 259

Posts Tagged ‘Pope Francis’

WOC Responds to Pope’s Exhortation, Christus Vivit

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 5 aprile 2019

Pope Francis’ new post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation, “Christus Vivit” (Christ is Alive), offers only lip service to the movement for women’s equality in the Roman Catholic Church, suggesting no concrete actions to further his own bishops’ call for the inclusion of women in decision-making and leadership roles in the Church.The “urgency of inescapable change,” as the 260 bishops put it at the end of their Synod on young people in October, is nowhere to be found in the Pope’s letter.Pope Francis acknowledges the Church’s “fair share of male authoritarianism,” and suggests the Church should support women’s “legitimate claims” for justice and rights. However, without critical introspection and active dismantling of the patriarchal structures of the Roman Catholic Church and its discriminatory policies, our claims for justice go unheard. If the Pope really wanted the Church to support women’s rights, he would begin by ordaining women.We also reject the weak explanation offered by the Vatican that the Pope couldn’t “cover everything” in a 33,000-word document, in reference to his failure to mention women in decision-making roles in the Church. The bishops recognized, however incompletely, the desire of young people for real change regarding the status of women in the Church, and it is disgraceful that the Pope chose not to further that charge.

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Pope Francis and Grand Imam of Al Azhar Sign Historic Abu Dhabi Declaration for World Peace and Living Together

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 5 febbraio 2019

Abu Dhabi. His Holiness Pope Francis and His Eminence the Grand Imam of Al Azhar Dr. Ahmed At-Tayyeb have signed the historic Abu Dhabi Declaration – a document on Human Fraternity in the United Arab Emirates.The “Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together” seeks to encourage stronger relationships between people to promote coexistence among peoples and to confront extremism and its negative impacts.The signing ceremony was in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces and attended by more than 400 religious leaders.During the ceremony His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum also presented the first “Human Fraternity Award – From Dar Zayed” that was jointly given to Pope Francis and the Grand Imam.The award was given to Dr. Ahmed at-Tayyeb in recognition of his firm position in defence of moderation, tolerance, global values and his vehement rejection of radical extremism.Pope Francis meanwhile is well known as an advocate for tolerance and the laying aside of differences and for his determined call for the pursuit of peace and fraternity among humanity, and the award recognises this continued commitment and approach.In a speech before signing the Abu Dhabi Declaration, Pope Francis said “hatred and violence” in the name of God cannot be justified, praising the value of education in reducing conflict.Meanwhile Dr. Ahmed At-Tayyeb, who is one of the world’s foremost Muslim leaders, called on Muslims to protect Christian communities in the Middle East and for Muslims in the West to integrate into their communities.”You are part of this nation… You are not minorities,” he said during his speech at the ceremony.
The ceremony was part of the broader Human Fraternity Meeting that has witnessed the first ever Papal visit to the Arabian Peninsula and hosted by the UAE Government.

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Al Giubileo dei carcerati le ostie prodotte dai detenuti di Opera

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 5 novembre 2016

udienza-papaRoma Il 6 novembre, a San Pietro, papa Francesco consacrerà le ostie realizzate nell’ambito del progetto “Il senso del pane”. Arriveranno a Roma per il Giubileo dei carcerati, assieme a una delegazione del carcere di Opera, i detenuti che nell’istituto penitenziario alle porte di Milano realizzano le “ostie della Misericordia”, in un laboratorio che la Fondazione Casa dello Spirito e delle Arti ha realizzato in collaborazione con il direttore del carcere, Giacinto Siciliano, che ha permesso, in un anno, di produrre oltre 600 mila particole. Le ostie vengono donate alle parrocchie che ne fanno richiesta da tutto il mondo con l’obiettivo di porre l’attenzione, come voleva il Concilio Vaticano II, sull’Eucaristia come fonte e culmine della vita della Chiesa. Un progetto che vuole interrogare credenti e non credenti sulla possibilità di redenzione e riscatto per ogni essere umano e che, quindi, intende anche approfondire il dibattito sul tema dell’ergastolo e del “fine pena mai”.Il Giubileo si svolgerà da sabato 5 novembre a domenica 6. Coinvolgerà delegazioni di detenuti provenienti da tutte le carceri italiane con i loro famigliari, il personale penitenziario, i cappellani e i rappresentanti delle associazioni che offrono assistenza ai detenuti.Le “ostie della Misericordia” hanno raggiunto oggi tutti i cinque continenti e il progetto “Il senso del pane” coinvolge, attualmente, più di 300 parrocchie in Italia e nel mondo, impegnate a riflettere sull’Eucaristia e a condividere l’esperienza dei tre detenuti coinvolti nell’iniziativa. Il Santo Padre ha già consacrato le particole nel giorno di Pentecoste e le consacrerà nuovamente alle ore 10 di domenica, durante la Santa Messa. «Il Papa ci ha ricevuti in udienza lo scorso 9 aprile», commenta Giuseppe, uno dei tre detenuti coinvolti. «È stato un momento di grande gioia e siamo felici di incontrarlo di nuovo, soprattutto perché saremo assieme a tantissime altre persone che, come noi, condividono la realtà del carcere: un posto di pena e di tristezza, ma che può diventare anche un luogo da cui rinasce la speranza e in cui si fa esperienza della Misericordia di Dio. Per noi, grazie al laboratorio “Il senso del pane”, è stato così».
Concorda Arnoldo Mosca Mondadori, responsabile del progetto, che aggiunge: «L’Eucaristia non è nulla di simbolico. È la reale presenza del Cristo che illumina il mondo. Il nostro progetto vuole testimoniare a credenti e non credenti questa meravigliosa verità». (foto: udienza papa)

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Pope Francis at ESC Congress 2016

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 1 settembre 2016

pope francisRome. His Holiness Pope Francis honoured the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) with an historic visit to ESC Congress 2016, the world’s largest scientific summit on cardiovascular medicine. “You look after the heart,” His Holiness told the cardiologists. “How much symbolism is enshrined in this word! How many hopes are contained in this human organ! In your hands you hold the beating core of the human body, and as such your responsibility is very great!”Pope Francis added: “The Magisterium of the Church has always affirmed the importance of scientific research for human life and health. The Church not only accompanies you along this demanding path, but also promotes your cause and wishes to support you.”ESC President, Professor Fausto Pinto, in introducing the Pontiff, said: “The European Society of Cardiology, like the Vatican, is committed to alleviating suffering and promoting healthy lifestyles. Both share a common purpose of delivering care to those in need and helping people live more productive lives.” The European Society of Cardiology brings together healthcare professionals from more than 150 countries to push the boundaries of cardiovascular medicine. ESC Congress, held annually at the end of August, presents more than 6,000 scientific abstracts, identifying the latest discoveries and breakthroughs in the field of cardiology. This year’s congress attracted a record 33,000 cardiology professionals.“There is so much more that could be done, that must be done,” Professor Pinto said to Pope Francis. “In Europe alone, 1.4 million people under the age of 75 die prematurely each year from heart attacks and strokes because, in many cases, they are not getting the timely and effective healthcare they need. “Governments, public health systems, clinics, hospitals, universities, we must all recognise the urgency of this public health crisis. And a crisis is exactly what it is, and how it should be seen.”

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Pope Francis To Visit ESC Congress 2016 in Rome

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 19 agosto 2016

papa francescoRome. The European Society of Cardiology (ESC) is proud to announce that His Holiness Pope Francis will visit ESC Congress 2016, the largest scientific summit on cardiovascular medicine. More than thirty-thousand health care professionals from around the world are expected to attend this year’s event in Rome. Pope Francis will address the gathering at the conclusion of the five-day congress on Wednesday, 31 August 2016.“The Pope’s visit is recognition of the significant efforts by the European Society of Cardiology and medical professionals worldwide to advance prevention, diagnosis and treatment of heart disease,” said ESC President, Professor Fausto Pinto. “We are honored to welcome Pope Francis.” According to the World Health Organization, cardiovascular disease is the world’s leading cause of mortality. It is responsible for more than 17 million deaths a year — or 31% of all deaths globally — according to the most recent data. The European Society of Cardiology brings together health care professionals from more than 120 countries to advance cardiovascular medicine and help people lead, longer healthier lives. ESC Congress, held annually at the end of August, presents more than 6,000 scientific abstracts, identifying the latest discoveries and breakthroughs in the fight against heart disease.

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“Peace is possible in Syria” says Pope Francis in support of Caritas campaign

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 5 luglio 2016

Pope Francis is urging governments to find a political solution to the war in Syria as part of the Caritas Internationalis ‘Syria: Peace is Possible’ campaign. “I would like to address all the faithful and all of those who work with Caritas to build a just society,” said Pope Francis, in a specially recorded video message released 5 July, “Peace is possible in Syria.” “Everyone has to recognise that there is no military solution for Syria, only a political one,” said the pope. “The international community must therefore support peace talks towards the building of a national unity government.” “I invite you to ask those who are involved in peace talks to take these agreements seriously and to commit to facilitating access to humanitarian aid.”
Dealing with the humanitarian consequences of the five year war in Syria is the largest Caritas relief operation in the world.
Caritas provides food, healthcare, basic needs, education, shelter, counselling, protection and livelihoods in Syria and to refugees in host countries. National Caritas organisations reached 1.3 million people last year alone.Caritas is also urging its supporters around the world to put pressure on their governments to:
· Ensure all sides of the conflict come together to find a peaceful solution
· Support the millions of people affected by the war
· Give Syrians inside and outside the country dignity and hope
“While the people suffer an incredible amount of money is being spent on giving fighters weapons. Some of the countries providing these arms are also those talking of peace,” said Pope Francis, “How can one believe in those who caress you with the right hand while hitting you with the left?” Caritas is launching a new website to support the campaign syria.caritas.org which includes specially commissioned artwork from Syrian artist Tammam Azzam, an animated film on the war, an award winning photo series and testimony from Syrians living both inside the country and as refugees in bordering nations and beyond.Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle has met with Syrians in Lebanon and Greece. He said, “These are not just number, these are human beings. We need to give them hope, dignity and peace. In the names of all the people touched by this conflict, we are appealing to everyone, can we work for peace in Syria.”

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WOC responds to Pope’s commission to study women deacons

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 14 maggio 2016

vaticanoThe Women’s Ordination Conference (WOC) applauds the women religious of the International Union Superior Generals (UISG) for brazenly dialoguing with Pope Francis on leadership and ministerial roles for women in the Church, including the opening of the diaconate to women. In response to the sisters’ questions, Pope Francis agreed to launch a Vatican Commission to study the diaconate to include women, stating: “It would be good to clarify this.”
Opening a commission to study the diaconate for women would be a great step for the Vatican in recognizing its own history. Decades of research on this topic has already been published by renowned feminist voices. WOC recommends that the Vatican’s commission include the following scholars: Gary Macy, Dorothy Irving, Ida Raming, Sr. Christine Schenk, John Wijngaards, and Phyllis Zagano.
Biblical evidence names several women deacons, working alongside men in the early Church including: Phoebe, St. Olympias, Dionysia, St. Radegund and St. Macrina. Such a commission, similar to the Pontifical Biblical Commission of 1976 that concluded there is no scriptural barrier to women’s priestly ordination, could begin to restore the Gospel values of equality and justice.
Pope Francis also stated that a woman cannot be in Persona Christi, and therefore cannot preach or preside over the Eucharist. WOC rejects this flawed interpretation that a male body is a necessary condition of representing the Body of Christ. Upholding this discrimination, as though it were the will of God, is simply indefensible.
While WOC celebrates this step from the Vatican, until women are included in all decision-making structures and as priests and Bishops of the Church, equality remains painfully denied.
May 22nd marks the 22nd anniversary of the Vatican’s Ordinatio Sacerdotalis, banning all discussion on the ordination of women. WOC advocates that a new commission on the diaconate include discussions on priestly ordination for women in the Roman Catholic Church.

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Pope Francis Asks Rabbi Shmuley to Pray for Him on Israel

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 4 marzo 2016

Rabbi Shmuley BoteachNEW YORK, NY — Rabbi Shmuley Boteach met with Pope Francis today at the Vatican. Rabbi Shmuley raised the issue of Israel and the Jewish people.He presented the Pope with a copy of his book “Kosher Jesus” and told the Pontiff he had written it with three objectives in mind:The first was to highlight the Jewishness of Jesus.The second, to educate about the Jewish origins of the Christian faith and how the only religion ever practiced by Jesus was Judaism.
And the third was to create a theological bridge of understanding between Jews and Christians in an era where Christians have emerged as some of Israel’s greatest supporters and defenders.Rabbi Shmuley then told the Pope that he thanked him for his courage in announcing last year that the Catholic Church would no longer be targeting Jews for conversion, and acknowledged that Jews and people of other faiths can go to heaven. He implored the Pope to take a further courageous step and protect not just the Jewish soul, but the Jewish body. “Your Holiness, the Jewish people are under threat around the world, with rising anti-Semitism especially here in Europe, and constant murderous attacks in Israel,” Rabbi Shmuley said. “As the foremost moral voice and spiritual personality in the world, your condemnation of anti-Semitism in unconditional terms and acknowledgement that there is Rabbi Shmuley Boteach1no difference in hating Israel and hating the Jewish people, is vital. Israel is hated simply because it is the Jewish state.
Stating that clearly and unequivocally, Rabbi Shmuley continued, would provide a moral bulwark against the enemies of the Jewish people, especially as forces like BDS attempt to destroy Israel economically and demonize the Jewish nation.
“Iran, Hamas, and Hezbollah all profess genocidal intent against Jews and Israel,” Rabbi Shmuley said. He asked the Pope to condemn the incitement in the strongest terms.
The Pope responded to Rabbi Shmuley by asking him to pray for him. Rabbi Shmuley responded that the he and the Jewish people were always praying for the welfare of the Pope, wishing him God’s blessings in achieving this vital and noble aim.
“The Pope is a man of immense warmth and caring and he listened intently to my heartfelt plea to protect my people in an age where irrational hatred of Jews is growing,” said Rabbi Shmuley. “I will do as he asked and pray that this hatred subsides, with the Pope joining the chorus of those who condemn in absolute terms the vilification of Israel and Jewry.”
Rabbi Shmuley thanked his close friend Gary Krupp of the Pave the Way Foundation for helping to arrange, for the second time, Rabbi Shmuley’s visit to the Vatican for a papal audience. In 2010 he met with Pope Benedict.
Rabbi Shmuley Boteach is the founder of The World Values Network. Its mission is to promote universal values in the media and throughout the world and advocate for democracy and human rights in the Middle East. Under the leadership of “America’s Rabbi” Shmuley Boteach, The World Values Network has introduced tens of millions of Americans to the life-affirming and universal values of Judaism and the Jewish people. Together with global leaders and public personalities from every sphere, The World Values Network tackles today’s pressing issues through global media campaigns, live events, debates, panels, forums and lectures at venues worldwide. They have also orchestrated media campaigns on behalf of the State Israel, emerging as one of the world’s foremost champions of the Jewish state. For further information, visit http://www.worldvalues.us. (photos:Rabbi Shmuley Boteach)

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World Jewish Congress leaders to gather in Rome, meet with Pope Francis

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 25 ottobre 2015

vaticanoNEW YORK – Leaders of Jewish communities from around the world will gather in Rome next week for a meeting of the World Jewish Congress’ (WJC) Governing Board. On Tuesday, 27 October 2015, nearly 150 delegates and guests will discuss the situation of Jews around the world, as well as the current tensions in the Middle East, the refugee crisis in Europe and the Iranian threat. The following day, Pope Francis will receive the WJC leadership on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Vatican’s landmark declaration Nostra Aetate, which will be followed by a press conference by WJC President Ronald S. Lauder.
Following the papal address, WJC President Lauder will give a press conference at 3 pm CET (15:00) on 28 October 2015 at the Stampa Estera Association, Via dell’Umiltà, 83/c, Rome, to brief reporters about the meetings.
The Governing Board meeting will be chaired by David de Rothschild and attended by 150 heads of Jewish communities, delegates and young Jewish diplomats from around the world. Discussions will focus on the implications facing Jewish communities in light of the various conflicts in the Middle sinagoga romaEast, including the threat of jihadist terrorism, the aftermath of the nuclear agreement with Iran, the growing attacks on Israel by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, and the state of relations with other faith communities.Some of the Board’s deliberations will be open to the media, while others will be closed discussions. Please contact any of the contact persons below for further information.
The WJC will be marking the 50th anniversary of the Nostra Aetate declaration, drawn up by the Second Vatican Council and promulgated by Pope Paul VI on 28 October 1965, condemning anti-Semitism and markedly improving relations between Jews and Catholics.On the anniversary of this important event, WJC delegates will take part in a public audience with Pope Francis on St. Peter’s Square, beginning at 10 am CET(10:00). Prior to that, the Catholic pontiff will receive WJC President Ronald S. Lauder in a private audience.
The World Jewish Congress (WJC) is the international organization representing Jewish communities in 100 countries to governments, parliaments and international organizations.

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Pope Francis in US Congress: Greenpeace reaction

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 25 settembre 2015

papa_woirIn reaction to Pope Francis’ address to the United States Joint Session of Congress this morning, Annie Leonard, Executive Director of Greenpeace USA made the following statement:“His Holiness Pope Francis’ words today are a rallying call for everyone to set aside partisan politics, and focus on what unites us, through open dialogue.””Pope Francis said in his speech, ‘We need a conversation which includes everyone, since the environmental challenge we are undergoing, and its human roots, concern and affect us all.’ Living up to these responsibilities means personally taking action to prevent the worst of climate change, and every one of us has a valuable contribution to make as we work to create a clean and safe energy future with justice for all people at its core.” “We all share responsibility for the same planet, and the duty to act on behalf of those who are most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, who have contributed less to its causes, and who have less capacity and resources to adapt.”“The pope’s leadership in calling for climate justice is truly inspiring. No one understands the devastating effects of human appetite for fossil fuels better than the vulnerable communities impacted by pollution from coal, fracking and oil production, or living in the wake of typhoons, droughts and hurricanes.””President Obama must have the support of Congress to take bold global action on climate change. Only then can the United States step up as a leader in Paris to speed up the necessary switch to renewable energy and protect the lives and livelihoods of impacted communities at home and around the world.”“Pope Francis said ‘Now is the time for courageous actions and strategies.’ This is a challenge for Congress and President Obama to show true courage and move beyond what is politically possible to what is scientifically necessary.”

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Pope Francis offers hope in encyclical on caring for our common home

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 19 giugno 2015

vaticanoPope Francis sets out a vision for rebalancing the inequalities between rich and poor in his first encyclical Laudato Si’, on ‘Caring for our Common Home’.Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila in the Philippines said the encyclical reflects what Caritas is witnessing in poor communities around the world:“I visit communities where people are living on trash heaps. Children are born in trash, grow up and die there. They feel like trash. This is not God’s creation, this is manmade. Pope Francis is inviting everyone to reflect on this reality. He is calling on us to ‘aim for a new lifestyle’, to change the economic structures that have caused so much harm and regain our responsibility for others and the world. Laudato Si’ will inspire the work of Caritas organisations for years to come.”
The encyclical touches on key aspects of Caritas’ work around the world such as the environment, labour exploitation, agriculture and social inequality. President of Catholic Relief Services/Caritas USA was one of the four people to present at the launch of the encyclical in the Vatican on Thursday.“Never have we so hurt and mistreated our common home as we have in the last two hundred years,” writes Pope Francis in the letter. “What kind of world do we want to leave to those who come after us, to children who are now growing up?”The papal letter looks at “the intimate relationship between the poor and the fragility of the planet”. It comes at a key time for global development. The UN will launch the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in September, where Pope Francis will attend.
World leaders will then gathering in Paris for the UN Climate Conference in December. “Recent World Summits on the environment have failed” writes the pope, calling climate change “one of the principal challenges facing humanity”. The pope calls on governments to make binding commitments to “ensure the protection of ecosystems”.The encyclical says climate change is a symptom of a wider sickness. Caritas says it calls for a transformation from the way we live now to one of greater respect for people and the planet. “The human environment and the natural environment deteriorate together; we cannot adequately combat environmental degradation unless we attend to causes related to human and social degradation,” writes the pope. “Every ecological approach needs to incorporate a social perspective which takes into account the fundamental rights of the poor and the underprivileged …by itself the market cannot guarantee integral human development and social inclusion”.Caritas says Laudato Si’ is above all a message of hope and of action. Pope Francis writes, “All is not lost. Human beings, while capable of the worst, are also capable of rising above themselves, choosing again what is good, and making a new start”.Individually, the pope writes, we have a responsibility to live more frugal lives where we end the cycle of wanting more as it means less for the poor and less for the planet. He is inviting everyone to play a role, highlighting that other faiths are engaging. He says that Christians must realise that their “duty towards nature and the Creator, are an essential part of their faith’”.

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Pope Francis plans for radical change in encyclical on caring for our common home

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 18 giugno 2015

climate_change“What kind of world do we want to leave to those who come after us, to children who are now growing up?” asks Pope Francis in his first encyclical, as he offers a positive plan to tackle climate change, inequality, poverty and exclusion. “Never have we so hurt and mistreated our common home as we have in the last two hundred years,” writes Pope Francis in the encyclical Laudato Si’, on ‘Caring for our Common Home’. However, he writes, “All is not lost. Human beings, while capable of the worst, are also capable of rising above themselves, choosing again what is good, and making a new start”.Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila in the Philippines said, “I visit communities where people are living on trash heaps. Children are born in trash, grow up and die there. Three generations know nothing but the rubbish tip. They feel like trash. This is not God’s creation, this is manmade.“Pope Francis is inviting everyone to reflect on this reality. He is calling on us to ‘aim for a new lifestyle’, to change the economic and social systems that have caused so much harm and regain our responsibility for others and the world. Laudato Si’ is above all a message of hope and of action.”The papal letter looks at “the intimate relationship between the poor and the fragility of the planet”. It touches on key aspects of Caritas’ work around the world such as the environment, labour exploitation, agriculture and social inequality. “The human environment and the natural environment deteriorate together; we cannot adequately combat environmental degradation unless we attend to causes related to human and social degradation,” writes the pope.On climate change, the pope says that it’s “one of the principal challenges facing humanity” where the “huge consumption on the part of some rich countries has repercussions on the poorest areas of the world”.“Recent World Summits on the environment have failed” writes the pope. With a key UN summit due to take place at the end of 2015 in Paris, he calls for “the establishment of a legal framework” to “ensure the protection of ecosystems”.Caritas says the Paris summit must agree on reducing emissions from now until 2020, with developed countries reducing by a range of 25–40 percent to give a 50-50 chance of global average temperatures staying below a 2°C temperature increase.The pope writes that climate change affects us all. “There are no frontiers or barriers, political or social, behind which we can hide, still less is there room for the globalisation of indifference.”The encyclical says climate change is a symptom of a wider sickness. “Every ecological approach needs to incorporate a social perspective which takes into account the fundamental rights of the poor and the underprivileged,” writes the pope. ““By itself the market cannot guarantee integral human development and social inclusion”.Individually, the pope writes, we have a responsibility to live more frugal lives where we end the cycle of wanting more as it means less for the poor and less for the planet. He is inviting everyone to play a role, highlighting that other faith are already leading the way. He says that Christians must realise that their “duty towards nature and the Creator, are an essential part of their faith’”.Caritas Internationalis chose “One Human Family, Caring for Creation” as its global vision as a result of Pope Francis’ calls for a “poor church, for the poor‘ and to end a “throwaway culture”.

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Why the Pope’s Encyclical on the environment should speed up the end of the fossil-fuel era

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 18 giugno 2015

papa francesco“Greenpeace welcomes the valuable intervention of Pope Francis in humanity’s common struggle to prevent catastrophic climate change. This first encyclical on the environment brings the world a step closer to that tipping point where we abandon fossil fuels and fully embrace clean renewable energy for all, by the middle of the century.”Everyone, whether religious or secular, can and must respond to this clarion call for bold urgent action.”As the Encyclical states, the environment is a public good, the heritage of all humanity and the responsibility of us all. Greenpeace has always taken that view. That’s why, with the support of millions of people, we aim to stop Shell drilling for oil in the melting Arctic.”The wording that ‘technology based on fossil fuels, highly polluting – especially coal, but also oil and, to a lesser extent, gas – must be progressively replaced and without delay’ is a crystal-clear call on responsible investors, CEOs and political leaders to step up the pace of the clean energy revolution.”The criticism of ‘those who hold most of the resources and economic or political power seeming to be concerned mainly in masking the problems or hiding the symptoms … of climate change’ is a welcome rebuke to climate change deniers and the interests that seek to thwart progress. That dirty game must end now.
“Above all, Pope Francis reminds all of us, individuals through to world leaders, of the moral imperative to address social and climate injustice. It is the poor who are most affected by catastrophic climate change, yet they have contributed least to causing the problem.” Martin Kaiser, head of international climate politics at Greenpeace, said:We welcome the clarity and directness of the Encyclical about the weakness of the international political reaction to climate change, with too many special interests prevailing over the common good. The Pope’s words should jolt heads of government out of their complacency, and encourage them to bring in tough laws in their own countries to protect the climate, and to agree a strong climate protocol in Paris at the end of this year. The Encyclical rightly points out that deforestation is a big contributor to carbon emissions and the loss of species. We endorse Pope Francis’ call on world leaders to protect the forests and oceans, and listen to the demands of people and scientists worldwide.Finally, we hope that the Vatican Bank will join the growing movement which is divesting from coal, oil and dangerous nuclear power and support renewables, in keeping with the Pope’s words. And we look forward to the Church’s support for an energy revolution at local level as well.

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Monumental visit of Pope Francis to the Holy Land

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 28 maggio 2014

pope francisFollowing the monumental visit of Pope Francis to the Holy Land, EL AL Israel Airlines flew His Holiness and 100 Vatican officials and international journalists to Rome aboard flight LY514, which departed the evening of Monday, May 26. The flight was operated on a Boeing 777 aircraft, which was adorned with the official coat of arms logo of Pope Francis and outfitted with an array of special services that were coordinated with The Vatican to enhance the flight experience and highlight the best of Israel.The handpicked in-flight crew of 15 was specially chosen to serve His Holiness and other members of the Vatican. The crew members represented all of Israel, people with diverse backgrounds. The captain of this special flight, Yaron Shimoni, is also the captain of EL AL’s 777 fleet and a former Israeli Air Force pilot. Many of the flight attendants speak numerous languages including Portuguese, Italian, French, Spanish, among others. In addition, many have been voted outstanding flight attendants along with other merits and recognitions.
In addition, EL AL’s head chef, Moshe Segev, developed a one-of-a-kind menu highlighting Mediterranean dishes created from the finest Israeli products. During the flight, a video highlighting this historic visit of Pope Francis produced by Israel’s Channel 2 was screened for their entertainment.
EL AL President, David Maimon, presented Pope Francis with two significant gifts including a selected piece of art created by internationally acclaimed Israeli artist Yaacov Agam entitled, “Faith-Visual Pray.” The artwork integrates symbols of Judaism including the Star of David and the Menorah, which not only pope francis1symbolizes the Holy Temple of Jerusalem but also the light of the seven churches of Christianity. Maimon also presented Pope Francis with a published book of greetings and messages collected on social media from EL AL passengers around the world.Lastly, all passengers received a bottle of wine from the Altitude 720 series from Barkan Winery that was affixed with a souvenir label with the date and flight number of this historic voyage. The Altitude 720 series has won prestigious awards for its 2009 vintage including the Double Gold and Best Kosher wine and the medal for Best Wine in its Price Category at the International Terra Vino Competition.With the completion of this historic visit, the Israeli airline is encouraged that there will be a renewed desire for Catholics to visit the Holy Land. It was nearly 66 years ago when the decision was made to establish a national airline, and in search of an appropriate name they turned to the Bible for inspiration and chose “EL AL,” which was taken from the book of Hoseah, signifying to the most high.
Celebrating more than 65 years of service, EL AL, Israel’s national airline, offers the most nonstop flights between New York (JFK/Newark) and Israel as well as the only nonstop service from Los Angeles. Worldwide, EL AL flies to more than 35 destinations from Israel and serves dozens of other destinations throughout the world (including the USA) via partnerships with many other leading carriers. Only EL AL has first class service on nonstop flights between the U.S.A. and Israel. The airline has annual revenues of about $2 billion and carries 3.6 million passengers every year.

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16 Catholic Organizations Call on Pope Francis to Apologize to U.S. Nuns; Launch Petition

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 16 maggio 2014

Piazza san pietro Washington, DC – The Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), an umbrella group representing 80% of the 57,000 nuns in the United States, remains under scrutiny from the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).  In the spring of 2012, the CDF issued a statement accusing LCWR of promoting “radical feminist themes” and “corporate dissent,” causing outrage among Catholics around the globe. On April 30, 2014, the Vatican chief of doctrine, Cardinal Gerhard Müller, accused U.S. nuns of not abiding to the harsh and unjust reform agenda imposed on them by the Vatican. In addition, the document personally attacked renowned theologian Dr. Elizabeth Johnson, CSJ. The following is an open letter to Pope Francis signed by representatives of The Nun Justice Project, a coalition of 16 progressive Catholic organizations based in the United States. In addition, the group launched a Groundswell petition calling for individual signers to take action. The letter reads as follows:
Dear Pope Francis
We write with respect and gratitude for your extraordinary leadership in our Church.Sadly, we also write with concern and dismay at the behavior that Cardinal Gerhard Müller recently exhibited toward women leaders of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) and especially toward Dr. Elizabeth Johnson CSJ.  Cardinal Müller’s preemptive public criticism of LCWR leadership and Dr. Johnson, one of the most beloved and respected theologians in the world, eclipsed any opportunity for public dialogue.  This communicates that faithful Catholic female leaders are disrespected and discounted in our Church.On numerous occasions you have expressed a desire to expand leadership opportunities for women.  We respectfully suggest that the place to begin is to listen to faithful women who are already exercising leadership.  We ask you to personally intervene with Cardinal Müller and Archbishop Sartain and remove the unjust mandates imposed on LCWR over two years ago.  In addition, a public apology to Dr. Johnson and LCWR leadership would speak volumes about the institutional Church’s intent to truly listen to women and honor their voices.  In closing, we express our love and solidarity with you as together we joyfully proclaim the rich diversity revealed in the Good News of Jesus Christ, a message ever ancient yet ever new.

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Pope Francis has told crowds in St Peter’s Square that hunger is a scandal and he urged them to support the Caritas ‘One Human Family, Food for All’ campaign

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 14 dicembre 2013

Pope Francis Portrait Painting

Pope Francis Portrait Painting (Photo credit: faithmouse)

“The scandal that millions of people suffer from hunger must not paralyze us, but push each and every one of us to act: singles, families, communities, institutions, governments, to eliminate this injustice,” said the pope, speaking at his weekly Wednesday audience in St Peter’s Square.One Human Family, Food for All is the Caritas confederation’s first ever global campaign. Launched on 10 December, the campaign says that hunger can be eliminated by 2025 if resources are shared.“Caritas launched a worldwide campaign against hunger and food wastage, with the motto ‘One Human Family, Food for All’,” said Pope Francis. “The Gospel shows us the way: have faith in the providence of the Lord and share your daily bread without wasting it.
“I encourage Caritas to take forward this commitment and I invite everyone to join this ‘wave of solidarity’.”Caritas organisations and people of faith across the world took part in a “wave of prayer” to launch the campaign. People prayed and reflected on hunger at midday in countries across the world.Pope Francis recorded a video message for the launch of the campaign in which he denounced the fact that there’s enough food in the world yet people go hungry.

 

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Official Catholic-Jewish Forum Meets in Madrid, Focuses on Religious Freedom and Combating Racism

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 20 ottobre 2013

The International Liason Committee, the official forum of the Vatican and the International Jewish Committee on Interreligious Consultations (IJCIC) met for the 22nd time since its institution 40 years ago to discuss ways of combating racism and anti-Semitism and championing religious freedom. Over 60 participants, including delegates and observers from both sides, spent four days in intense discussions exploring such timely issues as the dismaying rise in religious intolerance, the threat of extremism and violence, and the need to educate towards peaceful co-existence amongst all peoples. Co-chaired by Kurt Cardinal Koch, the president of the Commission of the Holy See for Religious Relations with the Jews, and IJCIC Chair Betty Ehrenberg, the group exchanged views and looked for ways to jointly work together to face the current challenges to religion and to faith groups. Citing the dedication of Pope Francis to work to increase mutual respect and tolerance, Cardinal Koch quoted the pontiff’s declarations that a Christian cannot be an anti-Semite.Ehrenberg emphasized the need for religious leaders to work together to defense religious freedoms and practices, in view of recent attempts to curtail religious slaughter and male circumcision.Special emphasis was put on the need for education of both religious groups as to the history and knowledge about Christianity and Judaism in order to dispel myths and stereotypes, with particular attention to the spread of the declaration Nostra Aetate to many areas of the world where the Vatican document that advanced dialogue and peaceful relations between Catholics and Jews is still not sufficiently well known.The groups expressed much satisfaction with the meeting and looks forward with anticipation to continuing to work closely together on these important issues of common concern.

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World Jewish Congress welcomes support of Polish bishops for overturning of religious slaughter ban

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 1 ottobre 2013

NEW YORK – The support of the Polish Catholic Bishops’ Conference (KEP) for the campaign to overturn the ban on religious slaughter in Poland was “highly significant and warmly welcome,” World Jewish Congress (WJC) President Ronald S. Lauder said on Monday in New York. “We appreciate this statement, and we will hope that it will lead Polish legislators to revert the wrong decision they took in July,” Lauder declared. He thanked the Catholic Church leaders for speaking out on the issue.
In a declaration on 25 September 2013, the Presidium of the Conference of the Polish Episcopate pointed out “that throughout our long history Polish legislation never questioned the right to religious freedom, including the right to maintain one’s own traditions and customs.” The bishops criticized a “lack of consistency of legislators with respect to two conflicting laws, the law on the protection of animals on the one hand and the law governing the relationship between the Polish state and Jewish communities on the other hand. The same problem was highlighted by the Union of Jewish Communities in Poland, which has applied to the Constitutional Court over the ban on kosher and halal slaughter.The KEP Presidium said that it shared “the view that Jewish religious communities and believers of Islam are entitled to preserve and implement their fundamental rights to freedom of religion and worship. It is their right to preserve their customs, including the ritual slaughter of animals.”At a meeting with Pope Francis in Rome earlier this month, the WJC leaders had raised the religious slaughter ban in Poland and asked the Catholic leader to speak out against it. The pope expressed concern about the ban and promised the Vatican would look into the matter.

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Pope Francis tells Caritas leadership: a Church without charity does not exist

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 28 maggio 2013

Pope Francis met with Caritas leaders from around the world to discuss their work in helping millions of poor and vulnerable people, telling them “a Church without charity does not exist.”
The Pope said that Caritas is “an essential part of the Church” and that it “institutionalizes love in the Church”. He said Caritas has two dimensions: action and a divine dimension “situated in the heart of the Church”. He said, “Caritas is not just for emergency situations as a first aid agency. In the situation of war or during a crisis, there is a need to look after the wounded, to help the ill…but there is also a need to support them, to care for their development.”
Pope Francis said that even if integral human development is costly, it is necessary: “We’ll hopefully have to sell the churches to feed the poorest.”
He said, “Caritas is the caress of the Church to its people, the caress of the Mother Church to her children, her tenderness and closeness.”
Leaders from Caritas organisations are in Rome for the annual Representative Council meeting.
Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga said to Pope Francis “We are your Caritas to be guided by you.” The Cardinal said that Caritas member organisations from around the world had signed up to a campaign to end hunger and asked for the Pope’s blessing. Caritas Internationalis Secretary General Michel Roy present the Pope Francis with a basket of bread to symbolise the campaign.
Caritas representatives from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Middle East and North Africa, North America and Oceania were also able to give accounts of the challenges facing the poor in their regions.
Sr Leonie Dochamou from Caritas Benin asked the Pope for guidance in how to best serve the poor. “We in Africa have the potential to work for our own development,” she said. Pope Francis replied that one way to promote development was the example of Don Bosco, to give children the tools they need through education.
The Pope stressed the importance of “tenderness”, saying that at times the Church has lost sight of this. “The Church is fundamentally mother. The spirituality of Caritas has to refer to this,” he said. Pope Francis said that Caritas must “go to the peripheries to cure and promote the human being” and to bring to the Church “tenderness.”
On the crisis in Syria, Pope Francis said that one million people have left Syria. “They have lost everything and are on the street. I mention this as an fundamental example,” said Pope Francis. “We have refugees in all countries, those who are smuggled, those whose passports were taken away and are forced into slavery. There is great need for the presence of the tender touch of the Church.”

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Habemus Papam: the greetings of the European Bishops

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 15 marzo 2013

CCEE Presidency has addressed today a letter to the new-elected Pope Francis in which it states “The European bishops see in your election a sign of hope and encouragement, a stimulus for us not to be concerned just about the specific problems of the Old Continent, but to measure the tasks of the Churches entrusted to our pastoral care in the perspective of the universal Church”. The letter proceed stressing the roles of the Church in Europe in the light of the vocation of the whole Church, especially facing in the old continent secularisation, the demographic and migratory situation, the dialogue with Islam and Judaism, the need of promoting the Christian unity especially through the cooperation over moral issues, social doctrine, environment with the orthodox Churches. The letter concludes with a point on new evangelisation. The letter is signed by Card. Péter Erdő, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest and CCEE President, by the two Vice-President, Card. Angelo Bagnasco, Archbishop of Genoa and Archbishop Józef Michalik of Przemyśl and by Mgr Duarte da Cunha, CCEE General Secretary Here is the full letter
“Holy Father,
We welcome the news of your election as successor of Saint Peter with immense joy. The European bishops see in your election a sign of hope and encouragement, a stimulus for us not to be concerned just about the specific problems of the Old Continent, but to measure the tasks of the Churches entrusted to our pastoral care in the perspective of the universal Church. In the light of the vocation of the whole Church, we are thus able to see more concretely our roles, too, dictated, for example, by a specific form of secularisation present in public structures, as well as in daily life; tasks which equally emerge from the demographic and migratory situation, which constitutes a challenge for families and invites us to practical dialogue with Islam and Judaism.
Besides the continual urgency to proclaim the Lord Jesus, in our continent we feel the pressing need to promote the unity of Christians, particularly collaboration over moral issues and social doctrine, in safeguarding creation and global responsibility for the environment with the continent’s Orthodox Churches. The variety of languages and national cultures in Europe underlines our commitment to reconciliation among peoples, and the need for pastoral collaboration for the new evangelisation. We implore the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary for the pontificate of Your Holiness and we support your apostolic ministry with our prayers. With filial devotion,”

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