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Cbcpmonitor Vol16 n06

Cbcpmonitor Vol16 n06

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Published by cbcpmonitor
- CEAP upholds tuition hike
- Pope sends condolences on Cardinal Sanchez’s demise
- The passing of a remarkable man of God
- March 25 marks ‘Day of the Unborn’ in PH, other nations
- Jubilee is celebration of God’s goodness, Malolos faithful told
- Foreign officials thank Sendong survivors for teaching them resiliency
- World Christian leaders to gather in Manila
- Pope: each confession helps the new evangelization
- The new evangelization also begins in the confessional!
- The Cross: A Supplement Publication of KCFAPI and the Order of the Knights of Columbus
- CEAP upholds tuition hike
- Pope sends condolences on Cardinal Sanchez’s demise
- The passing of a remarkable man of God
- March 25 marks ‘Day of the Unborn’ in PH, other nations
- Jubilee is celebration of God’s goodness, Malolos faithful told
- Foreign officials thank Sendong survivors for teaching them resiliency
- World Christian leaders to gather in Manila
- Pope: each confession helps the new evangelization
- The new evangelization also begins in the confessional!
- The Cross: A Supplement Publication of KCFAPI and the Order of the Knights of Columbus

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Published by: cbcpmonitor on Mar 15, 2012
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 Vol. 16 No. 6
March 12 - 25, 2012
Php 20.
The Cross
A Supplement Publication of KCFAPI andthe Order of the Knights of Columbus
World Christian leaders togather in Manila
LEADERS of various Christian Churchesfrom different countries will meet in Manilathis month in a “historical” event in theworld ecumenical movement.Organizers said they will converge at theTraders Hotel in Manila on March 22 to 27 forthe pre-assembly mission event of the WorldCouncil of Churches’ (WCC) Commission ofWorld Mission and Evangelism.Dr. Rommel Linatoc of the NationalCouncil of Churches in the Philippines saidthe occasion will be graced by church lead-
Leaders / A6Survivors / A6
   ©   M  e   l  o   A  c  u  n  a   /   C   B   C   P   M  e   d   i  a
CEAP upholds tuition hike
By Kris Bayos
THE Catholic Educa-tional Association ofthe Philippines (CEAP)supported its memberCatholic schools, collegeand universities, plan-ning to hike tuition nextschool year, saying theincrease is necessary tomaintain quality educa-tion for their students.
CEAP president Fr. GreggBañaga Jr., CM, said Catholicschools that seek governmentpermission to hike their tuitionrates rarely earn extra or gener-ate savings once an increasein matriculation fee is imple-mented.He said almost 70 percent ofany tuition hike is mainly usedto augment the salaries and ben-
ets of the school’s teaching and
non-teaching personnel, while20 percent is spent on capitalexpenditures to upgrade schoolfacilities and equipments.“The remaining 10 percent ofthe tuition increase constitutes
Pope sendscondolenceson CardinalSanchez’s demise
POPE Benedict XVI has con-veyed his condolence for thepassing of Cardinal Jose T. San-chez in a telegram sent to Cardi-nal Ricardo J. Vidal, archbishopemeritus of Cebu.Cardinal Sanchez was prefectemeritus of the Congregationfor the Clergy. He was head ofthe Vatican dicastery from 1991until his retirement in 1996. Hedied March 9 in Manila at theage of 91.According to the Vatican’sInformation Service, the textof the pope’s telegram grate-fully recalls “the late cardinal’sdedicated service to the Lord asa priest and bishop in his nativecountry, as well as our servicetogether in the Roman Curia
during the ponticate of Blessed
 John Paul II”.The Holy Father commendsCardinal Sanchez’s “noble soul”to the Lord and prays “that hiswitness will inspire others todedicate their lives to the ser-vice of the Lord and His HolyChurch, especially in the priest-hood”.Born on March 17, 1920 inCatanduanes, Sanchez was or-
The passing of a remarkable man of God
 Homily of Ricardo Cardinal Vidal at the funeral of Jose Cardinal Sanchez
WE lay to rest today a remarkableman who has made history in theannals of the Philippine Church. He
was the rst Filipino to have been ap
-pointed by the Holy Father to heada dicastery of the Roman Curia. Hemade his mark in the Vatican withthe publication of the Directory ofthe Ministry and Life of Priests, adocument that until today servesas the handbook for the clergy inthe conduct of their life and mis-sion.Made Bishop in 1968, he occupiedvarious posts in the hierarchy untilhe was called to Rome by Pope JohnPaul II to become secretary of theSacred Congregation of the Evange-lization of Peoples. In 1991, in quicksuccession, he was made Cardinaland became Prefect of the SacredCongregation for the Clergy.Yet it would not do justice to theman if all we talk about would behis achievements. There was a morebasic truth behind his accomplish-ments. Jose Cardinal Sanchez wasa man truly in love with God andwith His Church. Although he wasnoted for his earnest demeanor, hewas in reality a person very muchin touch with his feelings. But whileemotional men may cry over painfuland sad events, Cardinal Sanchezsheds tears at the consecration ofevery mass.It may confound some observ-ers, why his voice cracks as he pro-nounces the words of consecration.But Cardinal Sanchez was invariablymoved by the tremendous realitythat takes place at every Eucharisticcelebration, when bread and wineturn into the Body and Blood of theLord.He was a man of profound faith.Only the man who sees with the eyesof faith can appreciate the profoundmystery of the Eucharist. This faithfounds him on the solid rock of cer-titude, a quality not too many peoplepossess today. For in the relativisticspirit of our time, even the littlecertitude we have are sometimesdismissed as “mythological.”When he came home almost twoyears ago at age 90, not a few raisedtheir eyebrows when he declared thathe came home because he wanted
to lead the ght against the RH Bill.
Certainly, there isn’t much a 91 yearold can do. Certainly, 91 is no longer“reproductive age.” Yet, knowinghim well, I am sure Cardinal Sanchezmeant every word he said. If all we
ever think of “ghting” is the openeld of battle, we may have missedthe more important battle-eld of the
human conscience. Old people maybe easily dismissed by the young asdecrepit and obsolete. Yet, it is oftenthe elderly who can speak most effec-tively to the conscience of people.
Remarkable Man / B4
March 25 marks ‘Day of theUnborn’ in PH, other nations
AS the Philippines marks the “Day ofthe Unborn” on March 25 along withseveral other nations, everyone is en- joined to celebrate the day dedicatedto unborn children with activities thatwill communicate pro-life messages andpromote the dignity and protection ofunborn children.“It is a day when all people of good-will should rededicate themselves toadvocating that societies around theworld include every unborn child inthe human community. It is a day forpeople of faith to pray for the eradica-tion of abortion from the planet,” Pro-Life Philippines stated in an invitationto all to mark the special day.Suggested activities for the day arecandle-lighting activities for the unborn;prayer meetings to spread the mes-sage of life and love; poster-designingcontests revolving around the pro-lifetheme; seminars and exhibits relatedto pro-life issues; printing and distribu-
tion of leaets and other information
materials to encourage awareness ofculture of life issues; and rallies or smallpublic meetings to propagate the pro-life message.March 25, which is also the Feastof the Annunciation on the Catholiccalendar, was declared the “Day of the
Jubilee is celebration of God’s goodness, Malolos faithful told
MANILA Archbishop LuisAntonio G. Tagle said thecelebration of the jubilee isthe most suitable time tocontemplate the goodnessand generosity of God to-wards his people.In his 25-minute homilyduring the ConcelebratedMass at the Basilica Minoreof the Immaculate Concep-tion for the Golden Jubileeof the Diocese of Malolos,Tagle told the Malolos faith-ful that the occasion is “themost appropriate time forcontemplating God’s gen-erosity, God’s goodness tous”.The Church of Maloloswould not have reachedits status today had itnot been for God’s gen-
Foreign ofcials thank Sendong survivors forteaching them resiliency
FOREIGN dignitariesvisiting “Sendong survi-vors” on March 13 haveexpressed gratitude to ty-phoon victims for show-ing and teaching themhow to be resilient in themidst of a very bleak cir-cumstance.Swiss Ambassador tothe Philippines Ivo Sie-ber, with UK AmbassadorStephen Lillie and UnitedNations Population Fund(UNFPA) Country Rep-resentative Ugochi Flor-ence Daniels conducteda very low profile visitto the relocation sites ofthe survivors of Tropi-cal Storm Washi (locallynamed Sendong), whichdevastated a huge por-tion of Cagayan de Oroand neighboring Iligan
Condolences / A6CEAP / A6
Unborn” in the Philippines by formerPresident Gloria Macapagal-Arroyothrough of Proclamation No. 586 issuedin 2004.This year, however, the Feast of theAnnunciation is on March 26 sinceMarch 25 falls on the Fourth Sundayof Lent. The Annunciation refers to animportant event in the history of salva-tion, in which the Blessed Mother is toldby the angel Gabriel of her being highlyfavored and being chosen by God to bethe mother of Jesus Christ.‘Day of the Unborn’ overseasSeveral other countries had alreadybeen celebrating March 25 as a daydedicated to unborn children ahead of
the Philippines: El Salvador was the rst
to decree the observance of the specialday, in 1993. It was called “Day of theRight to Be Born” and was proclaimedby the Legislative Assembly, thanks tothe efforts of pro-life groups.In Argentina, the “Day of the Unborn”
was ofcially proclaimed in 1998. Then
1999 saw the “Day of the Conceivedand Unborn” declared in Chile, and the“National Day of the Unborn” in Gua-temala. From 2000 to the next few years,Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Peru,
Unborn / A6
City last December.More than 1,000 werekilled and another thou-sand are still missing
when oodwaters ram
-paged through the city,
overowing the Cagayan
de Oro River, and de-stroying everything in itspath, night of December16, 2011.Sieber, Lillie andDaniels expressed hap-piness for the rare op-portunity to visit andhobnob with the Sen-dong survivors at thetent city in BarangayCanitoan.
Jubilee / A6
Pope: eachconfession helps thenew evangelization
Archbishop-Emeritus of Cebu Ricardo J. Cardinal Vidal prepares to bless the casket of the late Cardinal Jose T. Sanchez during the funeral Mass atthe Cathedral-Shrine of the Good Shepherd, Diocese of Novaliches, March 12.
   ©   R  o  y   L  a  g  a  r   d  e   /   C   B   C   P   M  e   d   i  a   W   h   i   l  s  s  y   C  a  n   d  e   l  a  r   i  a   I   l   l  u  s   t  r  a   t   i  o  n   b  y   B   l  a   d   i  m  e  r   U  s   i
The new evangelizationalso begins in theconfessional!
erosity and goodness, hestressed.“Kung ano kayo ngayonay dahilan sa ginawa ng Di-yos sa inyo,” he added.He appealed to the faithful“not to let the Golden Jubileecelebration pass without adeep encounter with Godin prayer.”Tagle said if one is to con-sider the number of priestswho have come from theDiocese of Malolos over theyears, there may be enoughpriests to form at least 12dioceses.He underscored that theachievements made bythe Diocese of Malolos, itspriests and the Catholicfaithful would not have beenrealized without the graceof God.“Grace in itself is good butto produce a vibrant church,we need human beings to re-ceive the grace, not to waste
Catholic priests concelebrate the Mass to mark the 50th GoldenJubilee of the Diocese of Malolos, 10 March 2012.
 Vol. 16 No. 6
March 12 - 25, 2012 
CBCP Monitor
World News
Vatican Briefng
Catholic Church is growing: increasing number offaithful, bishops, priests, deacons and seminarians
VATICAN City, March 10, 2012—TheCatholic Church appears to be in goodhealth, with a global increase in thenumber of faithful, bishops, priests—es-pecially in Asia—deacons and seminar-ians. The decline of men religious seemsto have halted however that of womenreligious continues, even if contradictedby their growth in Africa and Asia.
These are the gures that emerge fromthe Pontical Yearbook 2012, which was
presented this morning to Benedict XVI,along with the Annuarium StatisticumEcclesiae annual Church statistics.The Yearbook has revealed some im-portant novelties regarding the CatholicChurch in the world, since 2011. Dur-ing the year 8 new episcopal sees werebuilt, 1 Personal Ordinariate and 1 Mili-tary Ordinariate; 1 archdiocese and 8dioceses in metropolitan locations wereerected; 1 prelature, 1 apostolic vicariateand 1 apostolic prefecture were elevatedto diocese and 1 mission “su iuris” toapostolic prefecture.The statistical data for the year 2010,provides a summary analysis of keytrends in the Catholic Church in theplanet’s 2,966 dioceses.In 2010 there were just under 1,196million Catholics, compared to about1.181 million in 2009, for a total increaseof 15 million faithful at 1.3%. The territo-rial impact of Catholics suffered notice-able variations between 2009 and 2010:they have reduced their importance inSouth America (from 28.54 to 28.34 percent) and especially in Europe (from24.05 to 23.83 per cent). They reclaimedposition in Africa (from 15.15 to 15.55per cent) and South East Asia (from10.41 to 10.87 per cent).From 2009 to 2010, the number ofbishops in the world increased from5,065 to 5,104 with a relative increase of0.77%. The increase was in Africa (+16new bishops), America (+15) and Asia(+12), while a slight decrease occurredin Europe (from 1,607 to 1,606) andOceania ( 132 to 129).The growth trend in the number ofpriests, which began in 2000, continuedin 2010, for a total of 412,236 priests,277,009 of which are diocesan clergyand 135,227 religious clergy, but in2009 there were 410,593 priests dividedinto 275,542 diocesan and 135,051 reli-gious. Overall, the number of priestshave increased from 2009 to 2010 bya total of 1,643 units. The increasesare recorded in Asia (+1,695 priests),in Africa (+761), Oceania (with +52)and America (with +40 units), whilethe decline has affected Europe (with-905 priests).The number of permanent deacons,both diocesan and religious, continuesto show a trend of high growth in 2010.In fact, this year saw an increase of3.7%, compared to 2009, rising from38,155 to 39,564. Permanent deaconsare present mainly in North Americaand Europe with a respective share ofthe global total of 64.3% and 33.2%.The decline that has affected thecategory of religious seems to havehalted somewhat in 2010. In 2009they counted 54,229 and the num-ber reached 54,665 in 2010. In sharpdecline in South America (3.5%) andin North America (0.9%), stationaryin Europe, vocations to religious lifehas increased in Asia (+4.1%), whichincrease its share of the world total,and Africa (+3.1%).Even the number of professed womenreligious is undergoing a profoundtransformation characterized by astrongly decreasing dynamic. Globally,the number dropped from 729,371 in2009 to 721,935 in 2010. The decline hasfocused on three continents (Europe,
America and Oceania), with signicant
negative changes (-2.9% in Europe, inOceania -2.6% and -1.6% in America). InAfrica and Asia, however, the increase
was very signicant, at around 2% for
both continents.The number of students of philoso-phy and theology in diocesan and reli-gious seminaries has steadily increased
over the last ve years. On the whole, it
is up 4%, from 114,439 units in 2005 to118,990 in 2010. The number of studentsin the major seminaries is down in Eu-rope (-10.4%) and America (-1.1%), upin Africa (+14.2%), Asia (+13.0%) andOceania (+ 12.3%).
   F   I   L   E   P   H   O   T   O
TOKYO, Japan, March 9, 2012—A year after one of the mostdevastating Japanese naturaldisasters in history, ArchbishopLeo Jun Ikenaga of Osaka is call-ing on Catholics to pray for thosewho died in the earthquake andtsunami and for the reconstruc-tion of the country.“What happened on March11, 2011 will never be forgottenin our lifetime,” Archbishop Ike-naga said in a letter to JapaneseCatholics.Archbishop Ikenaga urgedthe faithful to pray not only thatthe disaster areas will be recon-structed, but also that those whodied as a result of the disaster“will be given eternal repose inthe hands of God.”
To mark the rst anniversary,
bishops from all over Japan willcelebrate Masses in their dio-ceses. Archbishop Ikenaga said itis his hope that these Masses willallow people to pray together“across the nation.”Despite the horror of the earth-quake and tsunami, which leftthe Japanese “deeply shocked,”Archbishop Ikenaga said he wasable to “recognize how wonder-ful it is for people to supporteach other” by the generousdonations and support of volun-teers all over the world.Koreans showed their supportby holding up signs in front ofnews cameras that said, “Welove Japan. Japan will overcomethe hardship!”The archbishop recalled how Japan received donations from“all over the world,” nuclearspecialists from overseas offered“generous support,” and localsfrom “all over Japan” volun-teered in the clean up.“Facing unreasonable andcruel realities, we are largelyimpressed and encouraged bynumerous people at home andabroad who are making every ef-fort to help the affected persons,”Archbishop Ikenaga said.On Feb. 15, all of the active Japanese bishops offered Mass atTokyo’s Sekiguchu Cathedral in
anticipation of the rst anniver
-sary of the disaster that killed anestimated 20,000 people. Approxi-mately 400 people attended theMass, which was dedicated to thememory of the disaster victims.In his homily, Bishop TetsuoHiraga of Sendai—whose dioceseis home to the crippled Fukushi-ma Dai’ichi power plant—offeredhis thanks to the volunteers whocame from Japan and abroad.Volunteer efforts, mostly be-ing organized by Caritas Japanand the Diocese of Sendai, arenow focused on reconstructionand “will be carried on for manyyears to come.”“The word ‘unimaginable’has become a regular part ofmy vocabulary in the past year,”Bishop Tarcisius Isao Kikuchi ofNiigata and president of Caritas Japan said in a March 11 letterto donors.Less than a week after theMarch 11 earthquake, Caritas Japan sent staff to Sendai to workwith the local diocese to providerelief and assist in the rebuildingprocess.
Caritas Japan opened its rst
relief base in Shiogama, a major
shing and sh processing city,
to help clean up homes that werebadly damaged but still salvage-able. After shoveling mud anddebris out of the homes, volun-teers drank tea and spoke withresidents, giving survivors a“sense of solidarity in rebuildingtheir lives.”Ishinomaki, the second largestcommunity in the Miyagi Prefec-ture, lost 4,000 residents to thetsunami that followed the earth-quake. Many survivors were left
homeless, but were able to nd
shelter at Kadonowaki JuniorHigh School, one of Caritas Ja-pan’s largest evacuation centers.In the town of Shizugawa,
a shing town in the Minami-
Sanriku district, Caritas Japanopened a cafe-style distribu-tion center “where listening tosurvivors facilitated relation-ships.” Since the establishmentof temporary housing, Caritas Japan has created “mobile ca-fes” to distribute supplies andcontinue “its service of listen-ing.”
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On disaster’s frst anniversary, JapaneseCatholics turn to prayer
Convert priest thrilled to host Pope and Archbishop of Canterbury
ROME, Italy, March 9, 2012—Catholic con-vert Father Peter Hughes prefers to describehimself as “an Anglican who is now in fullcommunion with Peter.”“In a personal sense I have made this jour-ney, and it has been both a fascinating and ademanding one,” said Fr. Hughes, the priorof San Gregorio al Celio monastery in Rome,in an interview with CNA. Fr. Hughes wasreceived into the Catholic Church in 2000,after many years as an Anglican vicar in hisnative Australia and in England.This weekend he will experience his lifecome full circle as he hosts both Pope Bene-dict XVI and the Anglican Archbishop ofCanterbury Rowan Williams. The two reli-gious leaders will pray Vespers together tomark the 1,000th anniversary of the monasticCamaldolese Order, which has overseen SanGregorio since the mid 1500s. “The thoughtof living one’s own ecclesial tradition in adifferent context and celebrating what is rich
in both …is reected in this whole celebra
-tion,” said Fr. Hughes.He believes this weekend’s events signifythe “deepest desire” of the Pope and theAnglican leader “to move towards a com-
Thousands attend Bishop’s funeral
KHUNTI, India, March 5, 2012—More than 10,000 people yester-day attended the funeral of Bishop Stephen M Tiru of Khunti in Jharkhand.The 74-year-old bishop died the previous day at his residence inKhunti. Cardinal Telesphore P Toppo, head of the Catholic Church in Jharkhand who joined the seminary with Bishop Tiru, led the funeralservices, assisted by 11 bishops and more than 500 priests.The cardinal said illness had forced his seminary companion tolead “a very painful life” for many years, but he never let his problemaffect his dealing with people.A message of condolence from Pope Benedict XVI was read at thethree-hour funeral service.
munion which symbolically, structurally,sacramentally, institutionally can finallyreach its consummation.”The venue of San Gregorio monastery
comes with added signicance for English
Christians. In the late 6th century Pope Greg-ory the Great dispatched St. Augustine fromthe monastery to convert the Anglo-Saxons toChristianity, thus making them “not Angles,but Angels.” St. Gregory actually built themonastery on the site of his family home.“This is the third time that a Pope has metwith the Archbishop of Canterbury in thehouse of Gregory the Great,” Fr. Hughesexplained.“So, this connection with the English, thisconnection with Canterbury is fundamentalto the celebration.”In recent years, the search for unity has
been made more difcult as many Anglican
churches have liberalized their stance onmoral issues, such as homosexuality.An internal report published last year alsosuggested that the rate of decline amongAnglican congregations is so severe that theChurch of England could be “functionallyextant” or effectively dead in 20 years.But Fr. Hughes is still hopeful for Christianunity. “We’re always searching for expres-sions of God’s will. I think the desire forunity is as strong as ever. I think we need tolook for ways in which we can stimulate ourprogress,” he said.“This weekend is a way of saying, ‘thisis another step on the way,’ another way oflifting our spirits and saying this is still some-thing to hope for and this is still somethingto work for concretely.”
Anglican Archbishop Rowan Williams and PopeBenedict XVI
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Against abortion, for life: Vietnamese Catholics mark International Women’s Day
HO CHI MINH City, Vietnam,March 9, 2012—For VietnameseCatholics, International Wom-en’s Day (8 March) provided anopportunity to reiterate the non-negotiable values of human life,from conception, and to renew
the ght against abortion.
Recently, the Ho Chi Minh CityPeople’s Committee launcheda family planning campaign(similar to those in other Asiannations) to encourage poor andyoung women to end their preg-nancy in exchange for US$ 50and health care insurance.However, in schools, offic-es and families, InternationalWomen’s Day was used to pro-mote traditional values andculture, listen to Bible readingsand remember that “God cre-ated human beings as males andfemales,” with equal dignity to“complete one another.”In today’s Vietnam, men stillrule. Women are relegated to mar-ginal roles, often discriminated,victims of violence and abuse be-hind the walls of home. The coun-try’s pervasive socialist culture hasled to a moral collapse, and valueshave imploded, especially amongyoung people who are the firstvictims of the omnipresent mate-rialism. The latter leads youth tolive and work under a rigid politi-cal ideology whose ultimate goalcurrent five-year plan (2011-2015), which aims at imposingpopulation controls, includes thepossibility of going to hospitalfor sterilisation in exchange forUS$ 50 and a two-year free healthcare card.Such policies lead young wom-en to kill their foetus for money.For every 100 live births, 75 haveno chance to come into this worldbecause they are “unwanted.”A recent survey shows that 51per cent of students and youngpeople who live in the cities arein favour of abortion. Many alsothink that it is normal for youngmen and women to live togetherbefore marriage. For many, itis acceptable that teenage girlshave legal abortions.Figures from local health agen-cies indicate that each 1,400,000abortions are performed. Thatincludes 500,000 among womenunder the age of 18.According to the most recentdata (2009), Vietnam has a popu-lation of 85,789,573, 43,307,024 ofwhom are women.Some 25,374,262 or 29.6 percent live in cities; the rest, 70.4 percent, live in the rural areas, whichare often poor and backward.The fertility rate is 19.58 per1,000 women. The infant mor-tality rate is 29.88 per 1,000.
is the accumulation of wealth, as
conrmed by professors, sociolo
-gists and educators.“To deal with social problems,the government and the educationsystem need to have programmesof sex education that promote hu-man dignity,” said Maria H. T.,a catechist in Ho Chi Minh City.“On behalf of the Catholic Churchin Vietnam, we must talk withteens and parents that abortion ismurder and a felony”In the former Saigon, Catholicsare against the government’sfamily planning policies. The
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Vatican museums participate in Etruscan exhibit
“The Etruscans: Heroic Ideal and Lustrous Wine” is the title ofan exhibition presented this morning in the Vatican Museums,which will open in Palazzo Mazzetti in the Italian city of Astion March 17. According to the Vatican Information Service, theexhibition brings together more than 300 pieces, some of which
are little known or are being put on display for the rst time.
One hundred and forty artifacts come from the GregorianEtruscan Museum of the Vatican Museums, and the othersfrom the principal Etruscan collections in Italy.
Cardinal preaching pope’s retreat loses nephew toviolence
The cardinal who has been preaching Benedict XVI’s annualLenten retreat has just lost a nephew to violence, the Fides agencyreported Thursday. A nephew of Cardinal Laurent MonsengwoPasinya, archbishop of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo,was killed in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Feb. 22. The presi-dent of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference andarchbishop of Johannesburg, Archbishop Buti Joseph Tlhagale,sent his condolences to the Monsengwo family, Fides reported.“The loss of any life by violence is not according to the will of
God,” Archbishop Tlhagale afrmed. “The fact that another life
is lost in Johannesburg—whoever it is—is very sad.”
Hackers reportedly launch second attack on Vatican
The loose-knit group of hackers known as Anonymous havereportedly launched a second attack on the Vatican website,after failing in its initial attempt to bring the site down on
March 7. The latest attack has not yet been conrmed or de
-nied by the Vatican. The vice director of the Holy See’s Press
Ofce, Father Ciro Benedettini, said the March 7 attack was
not successful, as the hackers failed to post their distinctivelogo on the Vatican website. On March 12, the hackers statedon their Italian blog that they expect the Vatican to publiclyexcommunicate them. They accuse the Holy See of damagingpublic health with the antennas of Vatican Radio and alsoclaim to have broken into the site’s database.
Migration benecial to all involved, Vatican diplomatsays
The Vatican’s top diplomat to the United Nations refugeeagency told a conference in Rome that despite its challenges,
migration is ultimately benecial to everyone involved. “Inthe long run migration has proven to be a benet for both the
countries of arrival and the countries of origin and, above all,for most of the migrants,” Archbishop Silvano M. Tomasi, theHoly See’s Permanent Representative to the United NationsHigh Commissioner for Refugees, told CNA. ArchbishopTomasi was speaking at a March 8 conference in Rome entitled“Building Bridges of Opportunity: Migration and Diversity”organized by the US Embassy to the Holy See and hosted by
the Pontical North American College.
 Vol. 16 No. 6
March 12 - 25, 2012 
CBCP Monitor
News Features
Pope: each confession helps thenew evangelization
VATICAN City, March 9, 2012—Con-fession and true conversion of people’shearts is the “motor” of all reform andan authentic “force for evangeliza-tion,” Pope Benedict XVI told a gather-ing of priests and deacons March 9.
The Pope reected on confession
in an address to 1,300 participantsin the Apostolic Penitentiary’s an-nual course on the “internal forum,” atechnical term for the area of personalconscience and judgment in the priest-penitent relationship.In a novel speech, he connected theNew Evangelization and confession,saying that the effort to spread the Gos-pel draws life from “the sanctity of thesons and daughters of the Church, fromthe daily process of individual and com-munity conversion, conforming itselfever more profoundly to Christ.”“Thus each confession, from whicheach Christian will emerge renewed,will represent a step forward for newevangelization.”Priests are also able to become col-laborators in the New Evangelizationby hearing confessions, the Popesaid. They have as many possible“new beginnings” as sinners they en-counter, he noted, because those whotruly experience the mercy of Christin confession will become “crediblewitnesses of sanctity.”Pope Benedict also reflected onwhat happens spiritually duringthe sacrament of confession. The re-
pentant sinner is “justied, forgivenand sanctied,” thanks to the divine
mercy, which is the “only adequateresponse” to humankind’s need for
the innite, he said.
The forgiveness of sins has a directimpact on efforts to spread the Gospel,he explained, pointing out that onlythose “who allow themselves to beprofoundly renewed by divine gracecan internalize and therefore announcethe novelty of the Gospel.”The Pope also had some wordsfor priests who hear confessions. Hestressed the importance of spiritual andcanonical preparation, and reminded
them that priests must be the rst to re
-new an awareness of themselves as sin-ners who need sacramental forgivenessto renew their encounter with Christ.
He nished his talk by urging his
fellow priests to always make “noveltyof Christ” the focus of their priestlylives so that others will see Christ inthem.
Youth need Catholicvision of sexuality, Popetells American bishops
VATICAN City, March 9,2012—In an address that tackled
attempts to redene marriage,
Pope Benedict XVI challengedthe bishops of the United Statesto teach young people an au-thentic Catholic vision of sexand love.“The richness of this visionis more sound and appealingthan the permissive ideologiesexalted in some quarters; thesein fact constitute a powerful anddestructive form of counter-catechesis for the young,” hesaid March 9.The Pope was addressing thebishops of Minnesota, NorthDakota and South Dakota. Theyare currently in Rome as part oftheir “ad limina” visit, whichinvolves discussing the healthof their dioceses with PopeBenedict and various Vaticandepartments, as well as makinga pilgrimage to the tombs of Sts.Peter and Paul.“Young people need to en-counter the Church’s teachingin its integrity, challenging andcounter-cultural as that teachingmay be,” he told the bishops.Children must see this vision“embodied by faithful marriedcouples who bear convincingwitness to its truth,” but thewider Church also has to givethem support “as they struggle
to make wise choices at a dif
-cult and confusing time in theirlives,” the Pope said.The Pope focused his audienceremarks on outlining the rootsof the “contemporary crisis ofmarriage and the family.”This crisis is evident, he said,in the “weakened apprecia-tion of the indissolubility ofthe marriage covenant” andthe widespread rejection of a“responsible, mature sexualethic grounded in the practiceof chastity.”He noted that these decisionshave led to “grave societalproblems bearing an immensehuman and economic cost.”
The Pope dealt rst with the
threat posed by attempts to le-
gally redene marriage.
He recognized that drive toredefine marriage was beingpushed by “powerful politicaland cultural currents,” whichrequire a “conscientious effortto resist this pressure.”This has to be done, he said,with a “reasoned defense ofmarriage as a natural institu-
tion” consisting of “a specic
communion of persons, essen-tially rooted in the complemen-tarity of the sexes and orientedto procreation.”“Sexual differences cannotbe dismissed as irrelevant to
the denition of marriage,” he
said. This is why defending theinstitution of marriage is “ulti-mately a question of justice,”since it “entails safeguardingthe good of the entire humancommunity and the rights ofparents and children alike,” saidthe Pope.Later this year, voters inMinnesota will accept or rejecta constitutional amendment
that denes marriage as “only
a union of one man and onewoman.”Pope Benedict then addressedhow the Christian vision ofsex and love is taught to theyoung.He said the bishops must“acknowledge deficienciesin the catechesis of recentdecades.” This inadequateteaching has often failed tocommunicate “the rich heri-tage of Catholic teaching onmarriage as a natural institu-tion elevated by Christ to thedignity of a sacrament,” aswell as the “vocation of Chris-tian spouses in society and inthe Church, and the practice ofmarital chastity.”He called for better instruc-tion of both the young andthose preparing for marriage,with programs based uponthe Catechism of the CatholicChurch. These should alsoaddress the “serious pastoralproblem” presented by “thewidespread practice of co-habitation, often by coupleswho seem unaware that it isgravely sinful, not to mentiondamaging to the stability ofsociety.”All Catholic family agenciesshould also give support and“reach out to” those who aredivorced, separated, single par-ents, teenage mothers, womenconsidering abortion, as well aschildren suffering due to familybreakdown.
The Pope identied an “ur
-gent need” for Christians to“recover an appreciation ofthe virtue of chastity” which,he reminded the bishops, is
dened in the Catechism as an
“apprenticeship in self-masterywhich is a training in humanfreedom.”Fundamentally, he said, theChristian understanding ofsexuality is “a source of genu-ine freedom, happiness and the
fulllment of our fundamental
and innate human vocation tolove.”He concluded by telling thebishops that children have “afundamental right” to growup with an “understanding ofsexuality and its proper placein human relationships.”
(CNA/  EWTN News)
Recognizing gay unions devalues marriage,
ofcial tells UN council
VATICAN City, March 9,2012—The Catholic Churchcondemns violence and dis-crimination against homo-sexual persons, but recognizingsame-sex unions as a marriagedevalues the unique identityand social contributions of theunion of aman and a woman,
a Vatican ofcial told the U.N.
Human Rights Council.Archbishop Silvano Toma-si, Vatican observer at U.N.agencies in Geneva, told thecouncil March 9 that the Vati-can "condemns discrimina-tion and violence against anyhuman person, includingthose who are so targetedbecause of perceived sexualdifferences."The Human Rights Councilwas discussing a report on"Discriminatory Laws andPractices and Acts of Violenceagainst Individuals Based ontheir Sexual Orientation."While the report notedinternational law does notrequire states to recognizesame-sex unions, Archbish-op Tomasi said Navi Pillay,the U.N. high commissionerfor human rights, proposedthat states have an obliga-tion to "ensure that unmar-ried same-sex couples aretreated in the same way andentitled to the same benefitsas unmarried opposite-sexcouples."The archbishop said, "TheHoly See expresses grave con-cern that, under the guise of'protecting' people from dis-crimination and violence onthe basis of perceived sexualdifferences, this council may berunning the rise of demeaningthe sacred and time-honoredlegal institution of marriagebetween man and woman."Traditional marriage has"enjoyed special protectionfrom time immemorial withinlegal, cultural and religioustraditions and within the mod-ern human rights instruments,starting with the UniversalDeclaration of Human Rights,"he said.Marriage was afforded spe-cial recognition because therelationship between a manand woman, who commit tostaying together for life andare open to having and raising
children, benets all the indi
-viduals involved, and "makesa unique and essential contri-bution to the public good," thearchbishop said.Marriage "provides the bestconditions for raising children;namely, the stable, loving re-lationship of a mother and afather," he said.Discrimination and violenceagainst homosexuals or anyother group of people violatesinternationally recognized hu-man rights laws, he said, andacts of discrimination and vio-lence should be punished bylocal or national authorities.However, he said, the Vati-
can opposes efforts to "dene
new categories" of personsrequiring special protectionunder international humanrights laws.The right to life, liberty andsecurity "should and mustbe universally respected andenjoyed," he said. "Efforts toparticularize or to developspecial rights for special groupsof people could easily put atrisk the universality of thoserights."
Groups conduct fact-nding mission in Hacienda Luisita
MANILA, March 10, 2012—Different cause-oriented groups will go to the Hacienda
Luisita today to conduct a fact-nding mis
-sion to investigate the current situation there,amid reports of militarization and harass-ments against the farmers by military andprivate security groups deployed there.In a statement, the Alyansa ng mgaManggagawang Bukid sa Asyenda Lu-isita (Ambala) said that the Alyansa ng mgaMagbubukid sa Gitnang Luson, Karapatan,Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura,Luisita Peasants’ and Peoples’ Alliance, and
other organizations will join the fact-nding
mission that covers the barangays (villages)of Balete, Mapalacsiao, Lourdes, Cutcut andAsturias in Tarlac City; Motrico and Bantogin La Paz; and Mabilog, Pando, and Parangall in Concepcion.Ambala chair Felix Nacpil Jr., meanwhileurged the Armed Forces of the Philippines,the Philippine National Police and otherparamilitary groups to withdraw its forcesdeployed in the hacienda and stop harassingthe people there, since they are legitimateowners of the land, in pursuance to theNovember 2011 decision of the SupremeCourt.Earlier, Ambala and other concerned
organizations had led a petition before theSupreme Court to nally resolve the issues
in the Hacienda and let the tillers have theirshare.However, the Hacienda Luisita, Inc. man-agement had been pushing for the reverse ofthe decision. Although the HLI said that theywould “respect” whatever be the decision ofthe Court and the Department of AgrarianReform (DAR), they are also demanding P10billion (US$235,294,117.65) as compensationfor the 6,000-hectare sugar estate.CBCP-NASSA [Catholic Bishops’ Confer-ence of the Philippines-National Secretariatfor Social Action, Justice and Peace] chiefand Manila Auxiliary Bishop BroderickPabillo earlier had issued a statement, say-ing that the P10 billion compensation theCojuangcos are asking for the hacienda is“totally unfair.”The struggle of the farmworkers in theCojuangco-controlled hacienda has beenbloody, ever since.In November 16, 2004, at least 14 farm-workers were killed and several others werewounded when the State forces allegedly
red against the rallying workers.
During the height of the anti-insurgencycampaign by the former Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo government, several farmworker-leaders from the hacienda had been felled
down, allegedly due to their ght for the
ownership of the lands of the disputedhacienda.Marcelino Beltran, chairperson of Alyansang mga Magbubukid sa Tarlak (AMT) andvice-chairperson of AMGL, Tarlac City coun-cilor Abel Ladera; Philippine IndependentChurch Bishop Alberto Ramento and priestWilliam Tadeña; ULWU leader Tirso Cruz,Bayan Muna leader Victor Concepcion, werekilled by alleged military and paramilitaryforces.In the report of United Nations’ specialrapporteur on extrajudicial killings, Philip
Alston had positively identied the military
as the “brain” behind the killings of activ-ists, actively criticizing the socioeconomicand sociopolitical policies of the formeradministration.There are overwhelming reasons why themilitary should be pulled out of HaciendaLuisita, farmworkers who are legitimatelyand morally upholding their rights to landare usual targets of rights abuses and itwould continue unless they are out of thehacienda,” Ambala leader said.
(Noel SalesBarcelona/CBCPNews)
RH bill will only burden, not help Filipinos—anti-RH
MANILA, March 4, 2012—Pro-ponents of the reproductivehealth (RH) bill base the con-troversial piece of legislationon wrong premises that tendto burden — not genuinely aid— Filipinos, according to thosewho reject the measure.One of the basic ideas thathave come up in Congressdebates and in news reportsis the “unmet need for contra-ception,” which bill sponsorsand supporters have claimedexists and which would justifythe RH bill being made a toppriority.“‘Unmet needs’ should ap-ply to basic deprivation andnot to contraception. Unmetneeds for decent shelter, food,education. Unmet need for
protection against oods. Un
-met need for decent jobs, jus-tice, equal protection, real basichealth care, and so on,” Willy Jose, a Human Resources man-ager, pointed out. Jose explained that ratherthan taxpayers’ money goinginto the delivery of such basicservices which Filipinos are indire need of, billions of pesos
would be poured into nanc
-ing bedroom-related activitiesand their consequences.
Safe? Satisfying? Selsh?
“In effect, they want taxpay-ers to subsidize the irresponsi-ble satisfaction of uncontrolledsexual urges. Certainly thatis not the duty of the State,but they want us to believeotherwise.“The right to a ‘safe and sat-isfying sex life’ is an inventionof the UNFPA, which carrieswith it an implicit right tohave ‘access’ to contraceptives.The RH bill authors lappedit up,” he continued. “Forthem, access means not onlyallowing but advocating andsubsidizing these by force of
law. This right is ctitious. For
if it really were a ‘human right’to be given contraceptives orcontraceptive sterilization,it would follow that anyonewho refused to provide themwould be guilty of a humanrights violation. There is noprincipled basis for this, as‘authentic’ human rights claimno exception.”“Selfish” has been the de-scription given by some un-informed RH advocates to therefusal to shoulder expenses—by way of taxes—for otherpeople’s use of contraceptives,for the distribution of suchbirth control supplies, and forprograms that work to instructeven the youth on how toachieve a “safe and satisfyingsex life.” Would this conviction
be selsh?“It’s not selsh because it’s
about something that’s mor-ally wrong, so why give your
money (to pay for it)? What if a
poor person who’s a gamblingaddict approaches you andasks for money—if you don’tgive him money, does that
make you selsh?” said writer
Nicole Bautista.
The ‘RH = development’ de-lusion
Regardless of values forma-tion and issues of choice (orthe lack thereof), the RH bill,some pro-free birth controlFilipinos say, ought to bepassed immediately becausenumerous Western and devel-oped nations have their ownRH laws already. Essentially,they see the Philippines aslagging behind, RH legislationas jumpstarting the country’sadvancement, and therebyvital in catching up with therest of the world.“I guess if ‘advancing’ meansbeing open to pole dancingkits for kids, Plan B vendingmachines in the school cam-pus, and tax money going toabortion mills, then I guesswe really are behind. But hon-estly, I don’t want that kind ofadvancement because I don’twant to live in a country thatinsists I have to use a condomto be called responsible. Lasttime I checked, responsibil-ity builds character,” Bautistastated.“Distributing contraceptivesand making them availableto just anybody, regardlessof age and status, is counter-productive. We have countriesthat have adapted this method,such as the United States, toprove that. They have providedfree contraceptives and medi-cal care to the youth, and thishas just encouraged promiscu-ity and as a result, countless‘unwanted,’ out-of-marriageand teenage pregnancies oc-cur,” observed photographerKaren Ilagan.“Abortion clinics generatemillions of dollars each year,”she added. “People have nowbecome so desensitized andare now killing their unbornchildren just because they arefound to have birth defectsor just because there is a bigchance that they might be bornwith defects. Is this the future
we want for the Philippines?”
(CBCP for Life)
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