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CBCP Monitor Vol16 n11

CBCP Monitor Vol16 n11

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CBCP Monitor Vol16 n11
CBCP Monitor Vol16 n11

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 Vol. 16 No. 11
May 21 - June 3, 2012
Php 20.
CBCP head seeks justice forslain Catholic radio man
THE head of the Catholic Bishops’ Confer-ence of the Philippines is calling for justicefor the killing of a Catholic radio reporter inMati City, in Davao del Sur.Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, CBCP presi-dent, condemned the killing of DxHM-AMnews reporter Nestor Libaton and praysthat the broadcaster’s death would be given justice.“First, we are saddened that this hap-pened,” Palma said. “Second, we hope andpray that the authorities will act on it that justice may be pursued.”
Justice / A6
‘Your work of missionaryanimation and formation is partof the soul of pastoral care’
Pope says immigrantscould revitalize USChurch
Legislators laud Palma’s call to shun pro-RH candidates
IT seems a simple statement
from a Church ofcial about re
-sponsible voting for the faithful
is generating more afrmative
reactions than skeptics wouldprefer.Members of the House ofRepresentatives praised CebuArchbishop Jose S. Palma’s re-cent call on the faithful to refrainfrom voting for politicians whosupport the reproductive health(RH) bill in the 2013 elections.“I’m very happy about that.I think [it has an impact], kahitngayon pa lamang nararamda-man na. Hindi na ganun ka-vocal‘yung mga dating vocal propo-nents, tumahimik (even now theeffects can be felt already. Thebill’s proponents who used to bevocal have become silent). AndI’m sure the bishop’s position is alegitimate one being the guardianof faith and morals of the faith-ful,” said Rep. Dennis Socrates(Palawan, 2nd district).Socrates questioned AkbayanRep. Walden Bello last year dur-ing interpellations on House Bill4244 on the measure’s brand of“freedom of choice,” chidinghim that the bill showed just theopposite via certain provisionsthat indicated coercive means ofimplementation.Another staunch anti-RH so-lon, Rep. Roilo Golez (Parañaque,2nd district) lauded Palma’s call,believing that being the leader ofthe Catholic Bishops’ Conferenceof the Philippines (CBCP) thefaithful will take the archbishop’scall very seriously.“People will consider that,”said Golez.Rep. Vincent P. Crisologo (Que-zon City, 1st district) asserted thatit was time the Church issued sucha call on its faithful to ward off anythreat to Filipino culture and pointout their rights through the ballot.“I am against the RH bill and Ithink it’s about time [the call wasissued]. From the point of viewof the Church, the RH bill goesagainst faith and morals. It is butproper that they do call on theirfaithful,” Crisologo said, addingthat if the pronouncement weremade much earlier, “I believethis bill would not have reached
rst reading.”
“The Catholic Church sincethe beginning of Christianityhas been consistent in its teach-
ing that [articial] birth control
is wrong and that Catholicsmust abide by the [Church’steaching on this] as pointed outin the encyclical Humanae Vitaeof Pope Paul VI,” the lawmakeradded.Crisologo also pointed out that
this call will denitely have an im
-pact. “For solons that are not well-entrenched in their district, it willhave an impact.”
(CBCP for Life)
CBCP chief urges diplomacy to resolve Shoalfeud with China
AS tension between China and Philip-pines continues over the Scarborough(Panatag) Shoal, the Catholic Churchsaid it is all out behind the Aquino ad-ministration in protecting the country’ssovereignty.But the head of the Catholic Bishops’Conference of the Philippines stressedall moves must be done in the spirit ofdiplomacy.Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, CBCPpresident, said the government mustwork to diffuse the situation and pursueall diplomatic channels and means to re-solve the ongoing dispute with China.“We believe that we have to protectour own sovereignty to show that welove our country,” Palma said. “On theother hand, we have many experts say-ing that there are ways that can be donethrough diplomatic means.”“We know that the complicity of theissue will require experts, diplomats. Onour part we say that to the extent we canmanifest that we love our country andwe love our land and we need to protectour sovereignty,” he said.
A foreign affairs ofcial on May 10
said the Philippines and China haveresumed talks in Manila to ease themaritime tension which started lastApril 10 when the Philippine Navy ac-
cused Chinese boats of shing illegally
off the Scarborough Shoal.The Philippine Navy tried to arrestthe crew but was blocked by Chinesesurveillance vessels deployed in thearea, which China calls HuangyanIsland.Both countries claim the shoal whichis believed to be rich in mineral re-sources, natural gas and oil.But Foreign Affairs Secretary Albertdel Rosario said the Philippines willstill bring the matter to the Interna-tional Tribunal on the Law of the Sea tolegally settle the issue, despite China’sobjection.“We call on our experts and diplo-mats to negotiate and try their best tomake known our claim,” said Palma.
(Roy Lagarde/CBCPNews)
Mindanao tribal community enjoysown electricity despite power crisis
WHILE Manila insists on privatizingtwo major power source to stem thealleged power shortage in Mindanao,a tribal community in the mountainsof Bukidnon is enjoying a crisis-freesource of power and potable water foryears now.
Sourced from a small free-owing
stream that flows directly from themighty Pulangi River, the mini-hydropower plant installed by the Environ-mental Science for Social Change (ESSC)is producing 10 KWs of electricity—justenough for the basic lighting needs ofthe 50 Pulangiyen households in Sitio
Samar bishops outraged over killing of anti-mining advocate
THE Catholic bishops of Samar Is-land have expressed outrage over themurder of an anti-mining advocatein Eastern Samar.The incident happened in Na-paraan village in Salcedo town
last May 1 where still unidentied
individuals ambushed and stabbedto death Francisco “Mano Francing”Canayong as he drove his tricyclehomeward.“We are deeply saddened by themurder of Mano Francing. We areoutraged by its injustice,” said Bish-ops Crispin Varquez of Borongan,Isabelo Abarquez of Calbayog andEmmanuel Trance of Catarman in a joint pastoral letter.Canayong was a member of theSamar Island Partnership for Peaceand Development.The bishops said he also heldleadership positions in other non-government organizations advo-cating environmental protection,human rights “and ordinary citizens’welfare.”“We pray and call for justice toMano Francing’s death,” the bishopssaid.But they also exhorted the faithfulwho believe in what Canayong stoodfor to continue his crusade to protectthe island’s remaining forests.“Rather than be discouraged, weshould take inspiration from his
sacrice if only because he remindsus of the sacrice of Jesus our Masterhimself,” the church ofcials said.
“The victory of Christ’s resurrec-tion is a sure sign that right is mightand that the good that we do willtriumph in the end,” they added.According to them, Canayong’s
nobility edies them citing that he
was offered bribes to stop opposingmining operations in Salcedo butrefused to accept them.The bishops revealed that Canay-ong had already received deaththreats a number of times because
Bishops push smokingban in church premises
THREE Catholic bishops have giventheir support to the anti-tobacco cam-paign and considering banning smok-ing within church premises in theirdioceses.Bishops Arturo Bastes of Sorsogon, Jose Oliveros of Malolos, and HonestoOngtioco of Cubao said they are con-cerned about the secondhand smokeand its effect on children.“I am absolutely in favor to ban smok-ing even at the church premises, plaza,compound or patio. Smoking inside(the Church) is already banned,” saidBastes.“I would highly recommend or favor
Church leaders hit gov’tover rising unemployment
By Roy Lagarde
OFFICIALS of the CatholicChurch chided the Aquinogovernment over its inabilityto remedy the rising unem-ployment rate in the country.
They said that in a country thatis rich in agricultural potential andnatural resources, there should not beproblems such as the lack of job op-portunities.According to them, many peopleare suffering from unemployment and
high ination rate, which necessitate asolution by all responsible ofcials.
“We really need some kind of effec-tive economic planning,” said Ledesma,former vice president of the CatholicBishops’ Conference of the Philippines.“And the challenge really is to providemore employment opportunities in thecountry.”Unemployment in the Philippineshad reached a record-high of 34.4
percent in the rst quarter of the year,
which means 13.8 million Filipinos haveno jobs, pollster Social Weather Stations(SWS) revealed on May 21.The SWS said the results were 10points higher than the December 2011unemployment rate, which registered at24 percent, or 10.7 million adult Filipi-nos. It also surpassed the February 2009record of 34.2 percent.The latest survey, which was con-ducted from March 10 to 13, sampled1,200 respondents using face-to-faceinterviews.The poll also found that most of theunemployed were either resigned, re-
trenched, or are rst-time job seekers.
It noted that the majority of the unem-ployed belonged to the 18-24 year-oldage group.
Papal nuncio Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto greets the new Palo Archbishop John Du after his formal canonical installation at the
Transguration of Our Lord Metropolitan Cathedral in Palo, Leyte, May 10, 2012. Prior to his being named as Palo archbishop, whose jurisdiction covers the Archdiocese of Palo with suffragan dioceses of Calbayog, Borongan and Catarman, Du was the bishop of Dumaguete.
Mindanao / A6Samar / A7Ban / A6Unemployment / A6
   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 News Supplement of Couples for Christ
   P   h  o   t  o  c  o  u  r   t  e  s  y  o   f   S  a  m  m  y   N  a  v  a   j  a
Water from a small stream is channeled to a small mini dam to power the mini-hydro power plant that produces 10 KWs of electricity.
   P   h  o   t  o  c  o  u  r   t  e  s  y  o   f   B  o  n  g   F  a   b  e
 Vol. 16 No. 11
May 21 - June 3, 2012 
CBCP Monitor
World News
Vatican Briefng
Pope calls on Chinese Catholics to be faithful to Church andconsistent in their faith
VATICAN City, May 20, 2012—PopeBenedict's prayer at the Regina Caelitoday, was for Chinese Catholics, whoon Thursday venerated “the BlessedVirgin Mary, Help of Christians,venerated with great devotion at theShrine of Sheshan in Shanghai" (pic-tured), "so that they may announcewith humility and joy the Risen Christ,be faithful to his Church and the Suc-cessor of Peter and live their daily lifein a manner consistent with the faithwe profess.""Mary, Virgin most faithful, sup-port the path of Chinese Catholics,render their prayer ever more in-tense and precious in the eyes of theLord, and advance the affection andthe participation of the universalChurch in the journey of the Churchin China."Benedict XVI's thoughts for ChineseCatholics came after the Marian prayer,that in this period replaces the Angelus,when the Pope addressed his greetingto the faithful of different languages.Thus, in Italian recalled both the bomb-ing yesterday in a school in Brindisi,southern Italy, and the earthquakethat this morning struck the north eastregion of Emilia. "Unfortunately, I haveto remember the girls and boys of theschool in Brindisi, who yesterday wereinvolved in a cowardly attack. Let uspray together for the wounded, somevery seriously, especially for youngMelissa, an innocent victim of brutalviolence and for her family, who are inpain. My affectionate thoughts go alsoto the dear people of Emilia Romagnaaffected by an earthquake a few hoursago. I am spiritually close to those whoare suffering from this calamity: weimplore God's mercy for those who aredead and relief from suffering for theinjured," he said.Before reciting the Regina Caeli,to 20 thousand people in St. Peter'sSquare, Benedict XVI had spoken ofthe Ascension—which is celebratedin many countries today—and how Jesus " in fact, in his humanity, he tookmankind with him in the intimacy of
the Father, and so has revealed the nal
destination of our earthly pilgrimage. Just as he came down from heaven forus, and for us suffered and died onthe cross, so for us he rose again andascended to God, who therefore is nolonger distant, but "Our God", "OurFather" (cf. Jn 20:17). The Ascensionis the ultimate act of our deliverancefrom the yoke of sin, as the ApostlePaul writes: "He ascended on high,and took prisoners captive" (Eph. 4.8).St. Leo the Great says that with thismystery “not only is the immortalityof the soul proclaimed, but also that
of the esh. Today, in fact, not only arewe conrmed possessors of paradise,
but in Christ we also penetrated theheights of heaven".Benedict XVI then greeted "the thou-sands of members of the Italian Move-ment for Life, meeting in Paul VI Hall.Dear friends, your movement hasalways been committed to defendinghuman life, according to the teachingsof the Church. In this line you have an-nounced a new initiative called "One ofus," to uphold the dignity and rights ofevery human being from conception. Iencourage and urge you to always bewitnesses and builders of a culture oflife".
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US Catholics preparing ‘Fortnight for Freedom’ events
WASHINGTON D.C., May 20,2012—Various initiatives areplanned throughout the countryin response to the U.S. bishops’call for a “Fortnight for Free-dom” June 21-July 4 to encour-age prayer, education and publicaction about religious freedom.The initiative was created inresponse to several moves bythe Obama administration thatare threatening the Church’sreligious freedom. The mostwell-known action is the Healthand Human Services mandatethat requires employers to coverbirth control and other servicesthat Catholics and other believ-
ers nd morally objectionable.
At Baltimore’s Basilica of theNational Shrine of the Assump-tion of the Blessed Virgin Mary,Archbishop William E. Lori willoffer a special June 21 Mass at 7p.m. to open the fortnight. June21 is the vigil Mass for the feast ofCardinal Donald Wuerl of Wash-ington and Archbishop CharlesChaput of Philadelphia. Arch-bishop Chaput will serve as thehomilist at the 12:10 p.m. liturgy.Bishop Richard Malone ofPortland, Maine will celebratea July 2 Mass at Portland’sCathedral of the ImmaculateConception.“Religious liberty is not onlyabout our ability to go to Masson Sunday or to pray the Rosaryat home. It is about whether wecan continue to make our contri-bution to the common good ofall Americans without violatingour deeply-held moral beliefs,”Bishop Malone said. “This issueaffects all Americans—it is not aCatholic issue, a Jewish issue, anOrthodox, Mormon, or Muslimissue. It is an American issue.”In Arlington, Va. Bishop PaulS. Loverde will celebrate a HolyHour for Religious Freedomat the Cathedral of St. ThomasMore on June 21 at 7:30 p.m.“In many ways, this struggle ismore a marathon than a sprint.I ask you to join me and prayer-fully embrace this challengenot only as a vital struggle overCatholics’ right to full citizen-ship in this great country but asa teaching moment for us all,”Bishop Loverde said in a May 2letter to his diocese’s priests.Bishop Loverde has encour-aged Arlington priests to hosttalks on religious freedom, edu-cate the faithful on the issues atstake, and urge them to pray aNovena for religious freedom.Priests should provide a “tan-gible focal point” for the faithfulto learn about religious freedom,he said. He advised a place nearthe sanctuary entrance where pa-rishioners can obtain prayer cardsand educational materials.“With God’s grace, much goodwill come of this,” the bishop said.In the Archdiocese of Den-ver, archdiocesan administratorBishop James D. Conley willask Catholics to fast and prayon each of the fortnight’s twoFridays. Parishes have beeninvited to hold Holy Hours forreligious liberty.“The most important thingis the invitation to Catholics topray and fast for religious lib-erty,” archdiocesan chancellor J.D. Flynn told CNA May 18.The archdiocese has invitedpolitical science professor RobertKraynak of Colgate University tospeak about religious liberty on June 21 and 22.An essay contest on religiousliberty for high school students,with a scholarship as a prize, isalso in the works.Other events in the Denverarchdiocese include gatherings forcollege-age students at St. ThomasAquinas University Parish inBoulder and Bl. John XXIII Parishin Fort Collins, and an event forHispanic Catholics at the archdio-cese’s Centro Juan Diego.The Archdiocese of Louisvillehas encouraged parishes to in-corporate a prayer for religiousliberty at “liturgically appropri-ate” times on the weekends ofthe fortnight. The archdiocese isplanning a package of electronicresources for parishes to publishon their websites.In an April 12 statement, theU.S. bishops’ ad hoc committeefor religious liberty called for a“fortnight of freedom” from June21 to July 4. The period includes aseries of feasts of “great martyrs”who faced political oppression.Their statement was an “ur-gent summons” to U.S. Cath-olics, stressing the need forprayer, fasting, and public actionfor religious freedom.
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Paul VI honored as ‘One of the Great Protagonists of the 20th Century’
ROME, Italy, May 18, 2012—Pope Paul VI'srole in history will be highlighted at a Ro-man university that is instituting a chair inhis honor.According the Vatican Information Ser-vice, today the Paul VI Chair, which willbe instituted at LUMSA (Libera UniversitàMaria SS. Assunta) University in Rome,
was presented at the Vatican press ofce by
Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, retired prefectof the Congregation for Bishops; GiuseppeDalla Torre, Rector of LUMSA, and others.Cardinal Re praised the initiative of includ-ing the chair dedicated to Paul VI in the sphereof the coursework on contemporary history atLUMSA because "the footprints of his work inhistory—as the priest in charge of the ItalianFederation of Catholic Universities (FUCI), aswell as Secretary of State of his Holiness, andlater as Archbishop of Milan and Pope—havenot been erased or discoloured with the pass-ing of time. On the contrary, they have beenmade stronger. Pope Montini was one of thegreat protagonists of the 20th century".Paul VI has a place in history, above all forhis guidance of the Second Vatican Council,
the cardinal afrmed. Even if the merit of
calling for and opening the Council falls toBlessed John XXIII, "Paul VI led it with anexpert and sure hand, respectful of the Fa-
thers of the Church but rm". For example,
"his decision to publish the famous 'Notapraevia', on collegiality and Petrine primacyestablished the authoritative and properinterpretation of the matter".He also "loved and esteemed his day andlooked at the modern world with sympathet-ic eyes, seeking the reconciliation betweenthe modern age and the Christian faith.There are few like him who have known howto read the anxieties, the worries, the desires,and the weariness of the human being in ourdays. As Pope he made historic gestures and,
as these were carried out for the rst timeby a pontiff, they can be considered 'rsts':He was the rst Pope to ride in an airplane;the rst to return to Palestine; the rst to re
-nounce the crown, earmarking the proceeds
of its sale to the poor; the rst to go to the
United Nations; and the Pope who abolished
the pontical court, bringing a simpler life
style to the Pontical Household".
The historical investigation to be carried outunder the chair instituted at LUMSA will be veryuseful for analyzing two little known chapters of
Giovanni Battista Montini's life. The rst is the
work of formation of the members of the ItalianFederation of Catholic Universities because thePope "had an innate passion for the formationof persons: religious, but also civil, social, and insome way even political formation".The second is the impressive charitableactivity of human and social assistance thathe organized and directed during World WarII ... through the creation of Vatican Relief forcontact with prisoners and his personal anduntiring dedication to feed Jewish and politi-cal refugees hidden in convents and religiousinstitutions. This was in compliance with PiusXII's wishes but the dedication with which hedevoted himself to this task, asking assistancefrom nations not at war that they send shipsfull of provisions to Civitavecchia, north ofRome, merit appreciation and admiration. The'Montini Chair'", concluded the cardinal, "willalso contribute to our remembrance."
Priests condemn city's move banning bishop from events
MADRID, Spain, May 18,2012—Priests in Spain voicedsupport for a local bishop aftera city council adopted a motion
banning him from ofcial city
events over his remarks criticiz-ing dangerous behaviors withinthe gay community.On May 15 the Alaca city coun-cil passed the motion, which alsocalled for Bishop Juan AntonioReig Pla to be moved to anotherdiocese.“In response to these verygrave acts, we express our ad-herence to the Catholic doctrinetaught by our father and pastor,Bishop Reig, as well as our sup-port for him and his apostolicministry, and we invite all topray for religious freedom, forour Bishop and for those whopersecute the Catholic Church,”the priests said in a statementTuesday.The motion to transfer thebishop was presented by thegroup Union, Progress and De-mocracy and was backed by otherleft-leaning organizations as wellas the Spanish Socialist Party. Theruling People’s Party, however,has opposed the motion.Bishop Reig Pla has facedintense criticism after remarksgiven in a Good Friday sermonin which he condemned sexualpractices he believes to be harm-ful.As part of a larger culturalcritique of sexual behavior inmodern society, he lamentedhow some with same-sex at-traction “corrupt and prostitutethemselves or go to gay nightclubs” in order to “validate”their struggle.“I assure you what they en-counter is pure hell,” he said onApril 6.In response to the bishop,Socialist Party spokesman JavierRodriguez said his commentshave put him as well as thediocese “on the homophobicmap.”Bishop Reig Pla, however, hasgained the support of the Span-ish bishops' conference, whosesecretary general, AuxiliaryBishop Juan Antonio MartinezCamino of Madrid, called thecontroversy caused by his ser-mon “unjust.”The International Federationof Associations of Catholic Doc-tors has also voiced support forBishop Reig Pla as well as morethan 20 locals struggling withsame-sex attraction who person-ally wrote the bishop to thankhim for his remarks.
Thousands pray for Indonesia, world
 JAKARTA, Indonesia, May 18, 2012—Thou-sands of Christians from across the globewere in Jakarta yesterday to pray for peace,Indonesia and a better world free of crisesand social ills.The service at the Bung Karno Stadiumwas one of the highlights of World PrayerAssembly 2012, a five-day gathering ofChristian leaders that aims to transform theworld through prayer.The event, which also includes a series of work-shops on Christian leadership, was organized andco-hosted by leaders of Indonesian and Koreanprayer movements with the support of interna-tional prayer networks such as the InternationalPrayer Council and the Global Day of Prayer.The last World Prayer Assembly was heldin 1984.Reverend Bambang Widjaya, an organizerand secretary of the Communion of Churchesin Indonesia Advisory Desk, said one of thegoals of the May 14-18 event was “to ask forGod’s blessings so that Indonesia will experi-ence economic prosperity, spiritual and moralrenewal and be rid of natural disasters.”The service yesterday sought to bringabout welfare, justice, joy and peace in theworld, he added.“Let us make our world free from crimeand other bad things,” he said.According to Reverend Yonggi Cho fromKorea, Christians are called to be God’s arms.“The world needs us to, again, serve asGod’s children to return the dignity of allpeople who continue to suffer,” he said.Yohanes Sutanto, a participant, said hehoped the service will help free Indonesiafrom corruption and poverty.“Another serious issue [which should bedealt with] is intolerance among religiouscommunities,” he said. However, prayersalone will not work, he warned.“Concrete action must not be forgotten.Christians should help deal with problems,”he added.
Saints John Fish-er and ThomasMore.The close of thetwo-week obser-vance will featurea July 4 Mass atthe Basilica of theNational Shrineof the Immacu-late Conception,which will beconcelebrated by
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Vatican aide assures continued help in Orlandi mystery
The director of the Vatican press ofce says the inspection ofEnrico de Pedis' tomb by Italian ofcials is a positive event, in
efforts to solve the mystery of the disappearance of EmanuelaOrlandi. Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi made a statementto the press after the inspection was made May 14. Orlandi, a15-year-old Vatican citizen, the daughter of a clerk of the Pre-fecture of the Papal Household, disappeared on June 22, 1983,
in circumstances that were never claried.
Fashion company makes amends for Pope-imam'kissing' ad
An Italian fashion company has settled a legal conict with
the Vatican, which arose in 2011 after an ad campaign thatfeatured digitally manipulated images of the Pope kissing aMuslim cleric. In the wake of the legal challenge to its ads,Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said the Ben-etton Group now recognizes “that the Pope's image must berespected.” A recent declaration by the fashion company,
acknowledged by the Holy See Press Ofce on May 15, reaf
rmed its “regret for having offended His Holiness Benedict
XVI and believers” with its “UNHATE” advertisements,which portrayed kisses between religious and political lead-ers.
Prominent Legion priest admits fathering child, issuesapology
Father Thomas Williams, one of the most high-prole American
members of the Legion of Christ, is leaving public ministryafter admitting he fathered a child. “A number of years agoI had a relationship with a woman and fathered her child. Iam deeply sorry for this grave transgression and have tried tomake amends,” Fr. Williams said in a May 15 statement. He alsoapologized to members of the Legion and the Church, “sincethis scandalous news will damage them as well, at the worstpossible moment.” The identities of the mother and child havenot been revealed.
Vatican talks to continue with Society of St. Pius X
Though talk has been circulating for weeks of an imminentreconciliation with Rome for the Society of St. Pius X, a state-
ment May 16 from the Vatican press ofce indicated that
discussions with the group will still be ongoing. The state-
ment reports: "Early this afternoon, the Holy See Press Ofce
issued the following communique regarding the Society of St.Pius X: "'As reported by news agencies, today, 16 May 2012,an Ordinary Session of the Congregation for the Doctrineof the Faith met to discuss the question of the Society of St.Pius X.
After escaping war, Chaldeans face moral risks in US,says bishop
Iraqi Catholics eeing physical danger in their homeland oftennd themselves unprepared for the moral threats awaiting
their families in the United States, said the head of ChaldeanCatholics in the Western U.S. Seeing a lack of respect for the
unborn, altered denitions of marriage and a general disregard
for Christian values means Chaldean Catholic families settling
in the United States often nd themselves in a world they are
not at all accustomed to, Chaldean Bishop Sarhad Jammo ofthe Eparchy of St. Peter the Apostle of San Diego told CatholicNews Service May 17. The challenge for many parents is not
so much the usual difculties with the language or acclimating
to a new culture, but rather being afraid of what their childrenmay be exposed to every day in the media and many schools,he said.
 Vol. 16 No. 11
May 21 - June 3, 2012 
CBCP Monitor
News Features
Pope says immigrants could revitalize US Church
VATICAN City, May 18,
2012―Pope Benedict XVI says
that Catholic immigrants tothe United States could play acrucial role in the renewal of theChurch and society.“The immense promise andthe vibrant energies of a newgeneration of Catholics are wait-ing to be tapped for the renewalof the Church’s life and therebuilding of the fabric of Ameri-can society,” said the Pope at aMay 18 audience.Pope Benedict made his re-marks to a delegation of U.S.Eastern rite Catholic bishopswho are at the Vatican for a May
15-19 “ad limina” visit—the rstone specically created for non-
Roman rite bishops.He told the bishops that theapostolic opportunities pro-vided by immigration requiremore than “simply respectinglinguistic diversity, promotingsound traditions, and providingmuch-needed social programsand services.”Instead, there also has tobe a commitment to “ongoingpreaching, catechesis and pasto-ral activity aimed at inspiring inall the faithful a deeper sense oftheir communion in the apostolicfaith and their responsibilityfor the Church’s mission in theUnited States.”With many Eastern Catholicshailing from the Middle Eastand Eastern Europe, the Popenoted how the Church in theUnited States has historically“struggled to recognize andincorporate this diversity, andhas succeeded, not without dif-
culty, in forging a communion
in Christ.”More recently, the largestwaves of immigration into theUnited States have come fromother predominantly Catholiccultures, such as the DominicanRepublic and Mexico. A recentstudy suggested that Latinosnow make up 32 percent ofthe U.S. Catholic populationcompared with only 10 percentin 1987.Pope Benedict praised the“unremitting efforts” of Catholicinstitutions that are respondingto the needs of new immigrantsand described their endeavorsas “in the best traditions of theChurch in America.”“The Catholic community inthe United States continues, withgreat generosity, to welcomewaves of new immigrants, toprovide them with pastoralcare and charitable assistance,and to support ways of regular-izing their situation, especially
with regard to the unication of
families.”Earlier this month, CardinalTimothy Dolan of New Yorkpublicly criticized the attitudeof some Republican politicianstowards immigration. He de-scribed laws that separate immi-grant families and require identi-
cation before giving charitable
assistance to the needy as “notChristian” and “not American.”Instead, he urged lawmakers to“come up with a much saner,more civil, more just immigra-tion policy.”In his May 18 remarks, PopeBenedict expressed his “pro-found concern” over UnitedState’s immigration policy beingreformed and called for the “justtreatment and the defense of thehuman dignity of immigrants.”“In our day too, the Church inAmerica is called to embrace, in-corporate and cultivate the richpatrimony of faith and culturepresent in America’s many im-migrant groups.”The leaders of the EasternCatholic churches are the last of15 groups of U.S. bishops to visitRome on pilgrimage in recentmonths.Pope Benedict concluded hismeeting with them by impart-ing his apostolic blessing andentrusting them, along with their
ocks to “the loving intercession
of Mary Immaculate, Patronessof the United States.”
(CNA/  EWTN News)
Messengers of hope, peace still face persecution, pope says
VATICAN City, May 11,
2012―People spreading the Gos
-pel are still subject to persecutioneven though they are bringing amessage of peace and hope to aworld marked by crises, anxietyand desperation, Pope BenedictXVI said."However, despite the problemsand tragic reality of persecution,the church does not get discour-aged, it remains faithful to theLord's mandate," knowing thatwitnesses and martyrs always havebeen numerous and indispensiblefor evangelization, he said.The pope spoke May 11 toofficials of Pontifical MissionSocieties meeting in Rome."Dear friends, you know wellthat proclaiming the Gospel
often brings difculty and suf
-fering," he told his audience.Currently, much of the worldis facing economic, culturaland political change and "oftenpeople feel alone, fallen preyto anguish and desperation,"he said.again to conversion, he added.The pope praised and en-couraged a new initiative by
the Pontical Mission Societies
and the Congregation for theEvangelization of Peoples meantto support the upcoming Yearof Faith: the World MissionRosary, first created by Arch-bishop Fulton Sheen in 1951,and re-launched by the mission
societies. The rosary―made up
of yellow, red, white, blue and
green beads―helps people pray
for the different mission regions
of the world and ve areas of
evangelization: interreligiousdialogue, liturgy, solidarity, wit-ness and proclamation.The pope said he hoped theproject would accompany evan-gelizing efforts around the worldand help Christians rediscoverand deepen their faith.
Head of pontical academy offersapology, afrms pro-life commitment
VATICAN City, May 11,
2012―The president of the Pon
-tifical Academy for Life hasexpressed his full commitmentto the “Gospel of Life,” andapologized for communicationsthat were seen as dismissingmembers' ethical concerns.On May 8, Bishop Ignacio Car-rasco de Paula acknowledgedthat an April 2012 letter, criticiz-ing “some pro-life activists” whoobjected to aspects of a plannedVatican conference on stem cells,“contained unfortunate phrasingwhich, if misunderstood, couldhave offended the sensibilities ofsome persons.”In Tuesday's letter to academymembers, the bishop and academypresident assured them that the of-fending words were not meant “toshow any disrespect, and certainlynot to those with whom we havebeen collaborating closely andgratefully for years in favor of hu-man life and of its defense.”“The fulcrum of our academyhas always been and is, nowmore than ever, the Gospel ofLife,” Bishop Carrasco de Paulatold members.His message came four daysafter a letter addressed to thebishop was made public, inwhich academy member Pro-fessor Josef Seifert sharply criti-cized the organization's recentdecisions about holding confer-ences. According to Seifert, somemembers were calling for resig-nations among the academy'sleadership.The controversy began with aFebruary 2012 conference on in-fertility at the Vatican, in which
the pontical academy played a
non-organizing role. The eventdrew criticism within the acad-emy, for hosting speakers whoappeared to endorse techniquesand methods condemned by theChurch.In April, the academy an-nounced it was canceling aconference on adult stem cells,which would have featuredexperts who also specialize inembryonic research. In two sets
of letters, ofcials gave differ
-ent reasons for the cancellation,and disparaged the objections of“some pro-life activists.”On May 10, two days afterBishop Carrasco de Paula's letter,
a senior member of the Pontical
Academy for Life offered CNAhis thoughts on recent events atthe academy as well as its presentneeds and future direction.
The senior member conrmed
that neither the February con-ference on infertility, nor thecanceled gathering on adultstem cells, was organized by
the Pontical Academy for Life.
It remains unclear who did or-ganize February's conference,though there are suggestionsthat it was the work of a Catholicmedical school.“Dismay” over the infertilityconference was “expressed byall members of the Governing
Council” of the pontical acad
-emy, the member said.He recalled that after the“dreadful infertility conference,”and another “unfortunate” con-ference held several monthsearlier, “attention came to befocused on the upcoming stemcell conference with sensitivitiesand sensibilities heightened.”In the view of this senior mem-ber, the April 2012 adult stemcell conference “might haveworked—even with speakerswho did not agree with theChurch—if the entire programwere placed within the anthro-pological and moral vision of theChurch from the beginning, at theend, and with interventions fromrepresentatives of the Church'sposition if a speaker proposed oradvocated anything immoral.”Nonetheless, other speakers“could have been invited witha high level of expertise whowere not involved in embryodestruction.”The senior member said it was“madness to invite speakers whohad openly and publicly op-posed the Church and her lead-ers.” While “in principle, therewas absolutely nothing wrongwith such a conference,” the “bigissue was the risk of scandal.”“As I understand it, the con-ference on morally licit adultstem cell research was also beingorganized by someone else, and
the Pontical Academy for Life
was providing the patronagefor it without actually putting ittogether,” he explained. “I hopesome hard lessons have beenlearned there!”In the future, he said, the acad-emy staff “has to be more directlyinvolved in planning conferences.It simply cannot turn the plan-ning of events over to outsidegroups … If an outside group isinvolved in planning there has tobe vigilant oversight.”“Better management,” he said,could do much to prevent inci-dents like February's infertilityconference.The senior member also high-lighted the example of pastleaders' efforts to safeguard theacademy's moral vision.“When Cardinal (Elio) Sgrecciawas President of the Academy,he would call all the speakers toRome four months before theconference. Each speaker wouldhave to present his or her com-
plete nished paper, as it was
going to be delivered. That waythere were no surprises.”“Cardinal (Fiorenzo) Angelini,who preceded Sgreccia, wouldactually intervene if a speakersaid anything contrary to moraltruth and point out forcefullyto the speaker and the audiencethat what was just said wascontrary to Catholic teaching ormorality.”“As Catholics we have tobe engaged with the broadersociety,” the senior academymember stated.Simultaneously, he said, “wemust always call those who are
involved in scientic research, or
manufacturing, or governmentto do everything in accord withthe moral vision of the humanperson articulated and clearlytaught by the Church.”
Supercial idea of beauty may be seen in natural bornmen's desire to be beauty titlists
MANILA, May 14, 2012—While same-sex“marriage” supporters in the United Statesattempt to put homosexual unions andholy matrimony on equal footing, the issueon Philippine shores recently has been theidea of admitting physically altered meninto beauty pageants for women in thename of equality.“I think the transgender thing happen-ing was really just a matter of time. Whenbeauty is quantified and broken downto things like height or chest or waistmeasurement, it becomes unsurprisingthat surgically altered individuals wouldwant in. I’m really not a big fan of beautypageants in general because I think theystill tend to objectify women. This for me just makes it even more unpalatable,” saidStef Patag, a homeschooling mom in theUnited States.“It just highlights the way beauty hasbecome a commodity—something that canbe purchased, instead of something that’sinnate, something that comes with beingGod’s creation… or maybe we’re not evenallowed to say that anymore, since that’s[supposedly] ‘bigotry’?”“I don’t think it’s a good idea to mix‘natural born’ women with ‘naturalized’women. This is not like a citizenship is-sue – this involves tampering with nature,”magazine editor and newspaper columnistTeresa Reyes Tunay pointed out.“What’s insidious here is the long-rangeeffect this move will have on people’sconsciousness and values, particularlythe young. It will add to the list of thingsthat blur the difference between right andwrong. No real woman in her right mindwill join a Miss Universe pageant thatinsists on entertaining surgically alteredmen,” she added.
 When discrimination is not necessarilywrong 
That beauty contests have been taggedas discriminatory is a given, and this kindof discrimination is not necessarily wrong,communications manager Rommel Lopezpointed out, saying that pageants are in-deed discriminatory in nature.“We separate the beautiful from what,in the judges’ perception, is not thatbeautiful. That is how contests are. We dif-ferentiate in order to get the best,” Lopezexplained.“That is also the reason why there arefemale beauty contests and there are malebeauty contests. You cannot compareapples to oranges. There are people whodare change their bodies because theybased it on their perception of what beautyis. You cannot compare now an organi-cally [grown] apple from an apple that isladen with chemicals. You just can’t. Tryconvincing an organic health buff.”
Commending the courageous
Former Miss Universe runner-up Miri-am Quiambao was asked for her opinionon the matter not too long ago, and hersimple, honest reply was met with anger
and ippancy from some sectors.
“…I believe that the Miss Universepageant should only be for natural-bornwomen. Yes, I agree that there is a wholelot more to being a woman than just looksand I believe that a Miss Universe repre-sentative should not only “embody” … butalso have that spirit. By embody, the XXchromosome is a sex-determining factorand the most important,” was part of thebeauty queen’s comments published in abroadsheet in April.“Miriam sounded sincere; she reallyspoke from her conscience. Credit her forcourage,” Tunay said.“Her initial statement was good; sheshould have stopped there and let oth-ers ruminate on her words. But – maybedue to her zeal – she blindly walked intoa trap by guesting at a TV show hostedby an overt homosexual. Of course, thegay activists, like roaring lions ready todevour an absent-minded prey, pouncedon her.”The beauty titlist’s courage and thereactions her remarks generated reachedforeign shores, bringing these to the at-tention even of Filipinos overseas whokeep abreast of events affecting life andfamily issues.
“I’m not surprised about the ak she
got for her comments. But you know, it’sso ‘cool’ these days to call Christianitybigotry. I think Ms. Quiambao shouldbe commended for having the courageto stand up for her beliefs. It’s funny,though, how those who scream and callfor tolerance are the very same people
who are the rst to call ‘foul’ when their
own beliefs, behaviors and/or lifestylesare challenged,” observed Patag.“Let’s face it, anti-Catholicism/anti-Christianity is the last acceptable preju-dice. Tolerance is only real when it goesboth ways. The LGBT crowd have theirown beliefs, let Miriam have hers,” Patagsaid.To be sure, men with same-sex attractionand those who go as far as undergoingsurgical alteration are not being prohibitedfrom taking part in beauty pageants.“I don’t mind if they want to come upwith Ms. Gay Universe, etc.–at least with
all of them transgenders there, the ght
will be fair and square. But with realwomen and ‘virtual women’ together,the judging criteria, for instance, willnecessarily have to be changed,” Tunayexplained.Lopez, too, leaves it to the person if hisdesire is to change his anatomical featuresand to join contests.“It’s his call. But don’t tell us how to
dene which is a woman and which is
not. Go hold your own beauty pageant,”he advised.
(Diana Uichanco)
In that context, those whoproclaim the Gospel, "even ifthey are messengers of hope andpeace, continue to be persecutedlike their master and Lord" JesusChrist, he said.Despite the challenges andthreat of persecution, Christ'smessage "can never give in tothe logic of this world, becauseit is prophecy and liberation; itis the seed of a new humanitythat grows, and only at the endof times will it come to full frui-tion," the pope said.He said the task of evangelizationalways has been urgent, however,the current era impels the church togo forth "at an even quicker pace" sothat people may know the truth in
Christ, nd salvation and grow in
 justice and peace.Christians, too, need to listento God's word and be invited
Media to blame for teen pregnancies―Youth
QUEZON CITY, May 16, 2012—Some youth leaders pointed atmedia as the culprit why therehas been an increase in teenpregnancies in the Philippines.With the United Nations Pop-ulation Fund (UNFPA) 2011annual report showing that teenpregnancies in the Philippinesincreased by 70% from 1999 to2009, young people reacted and
blamed the inuence of media.
Sex and media
 Jermer Cruz, 25, a full-timepastoral worker for CFC – Kidsfor Family and Life, explained,“We blame it on media wherethey just say that sex is sex andthat there is nothing more mean-ingful.”Cruz whose profession re-quires him to interact closelywith young people from dif-ferent settings added, “Culturefrom the Western side of theworld is being adopted by theyoung generation right now andthey really don't understand...”For his part, Nelson Ingking, a25-year old teacher from Bohol,
said that specically, TV shapes
young people’s perception aboutsexual desirability.“Pinapakita sa TV, magandaka 'pag naka very short shortska (It is being shown on TV, youare beautiful if you are wearingvery short shorts.)”Print media also encouragesyoung people to experimentwith sex, according Lanie Santos,28, “Pakalat-kalat nalang angmga magazines tulad ng FHM.Siyempre magbabasa sila n'yan.Ma-curious sila. (“Magazineslike FHM are everywhere. Ofcourse, young people will readthem. They get curious.”)
 Research says...
Unknowingly, these youngpeople are echoing findingsfrom a 2008 Rand Corporationstudy that showed, “Adoles-cents who have high levels ofexposure to television programsthat contain sexual content aretwice as likely to be involved ina pregnancy over the followingthree years...”The RAND study, headed byAnita Chandra, surveyed 2,000teens aged 12 to 17.Locally, the sex saturationof media is seen through localteleseryes, magazines, moviesand advertisements that haveseemingly legitimized pre-mar-ital sex and physical intimacy as‘romantic’.UNFPA 2011 figures showthat in the Philippines, 53 out of1,000 women who give birth arebetween the ages of 15 and 19.
(Nirva’ana E. Delacruz)
The Eastern Catholic bishops on May 17, during their ad limina visit toRome.Bishop Ignacio Carrasco de Paula and members of the Pontical Academyfor Life participate in a conference on motherhood in Sept. 2011.
  w  w  w .  c  a   t   h  o   l   i  c  n  e  w  s  a  g  e  n  c  y .  c  o  m  w  w  w .  w   i  n  s  e   l .   b   l  o  g  s  p  o   t .  c  o  m  w  w  w .  c  a   t   h  o   l   i  c  n  e  w  s  a  g  e  n  c  y .  c  o  m

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