Newman Beatification Expected

06/12/2009 Comment

Portrait of Cardinal Newman. (CNS)

A papal decree announcing the beatification of Cardinal John Henry Newman is imminent and will most likely be made before the Vatican closes for its summer break in August, the Register has learned.

Last month, the Vatican’s medical board concluded a miracle attributed to Cardinal Newman’s intercession was due to inexplicable causes. Deacon John Sullivan, 70, of Marshfield, Mass., was healed of severe back pain in 2001 after praying to the 19th-century English theologian. Deacon Sullivan was prompted to ask for Cardinal Newman’s intercession after watching an EWTN program on Cardinal Newman’s beatification process.

Now, according to Vatican officials, a team of cardinal theological...READ MORE

Filed under beatification, cardinal newman

Corpus Christi Procession

06/11/2009 Comment

(Edward Pentin)

To celebrate the feast of Corpus Christi today, Pope Benedict XVI celebrated Mass outside the Basilica of St. John Lateran in Rome this evening in front of several thousand faithful.

And following papal tradition, he then led the Eucharistic Procession from St. John Lateran to the Basilica of St. Mary Major, about a mile away.

In his homily, and with the Year for Priests beginning later this month, the Holy Father made a special appeal to priests: “Only in union with Jesus can you draw spiritual fruitfulness that generates hope in your pastoral ministry,” he said, and quoted St Leo the Great who said that ‘our participation in the Body and Blood of Christ does not tend to nothing...READ MORE

Filed under benedict xvi, corpus christi

Senior Swiss Guard Retires

06/11/2009 Comments (1)

Swiss Guards parade at the Vatican. (CNS)

He has played a leading role in protecting Popes for over 43 years, but now the dean of the Swiss Guards, Major Peter Hasler, is to hang up his halberd and retire.

The commander of the Swiss Guard, Col. Daniel Anrig, paid tribute to Major Hasler, who is nicknamed in the Roman Curia as “The Pope’s Shadow” for having worked very close to four popes. Col. Anrig recalled Major Hasler’s “passionate service in guarding the Holy Father” and praised the “great sense of responsibility” he has shown in his years as Major.

La Stampa reported June 10 that Pope Benedict XVI had bestowed an honor on Major Hasler on the eve of his retirement. The dean of the Swiss Guards left office...READ MORE

Filed under swiss guards

JPI Miracle Goes to Rome

06/08/2009 Comments (1)

Pope John Paul I (CNS/L'Osservatore Romano)

Pope John Paul I, born Albino Luciani, has moved closer to being beatified after the Diocese of Altamura-Gravina-Acquaviva delle Fonti in Puglia, southeastern Italy, concluded that a banker, Giuseppe Denora, was cured of stomach cancer in 1992 after praying for the late Pope’s intercession.

Giuseppe Denora, now 60, prayed in front of a newspaper clipping depicting Pope Luciani. He was at the time already receiving chemotherapy treatment, but he wasn’t expected to be cured.

Now, details of the miracle have been sent to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, where further examinations will be carried out. This signifies the start of the “Roman” phase of the process, when a...READ MORE

Filed under john paul i

Embassy: No Seizure of Funds

06/08/2009 Comment

Reports that Israel’s Chief Tax Collector had seized the funds of Catholic Church institutions in Israel in order to force them to submit to fiscal demands have been denied today by Israel’s embassy to the Holy See.

According to an earlier AsiaNews report, Yehezkel Abrahamoff of Israel’s Finance Ministry had ordered the seizure to force the Church to pay taxes without waiting the outcome of ongoing negotiations on the 1993 Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and Israel. Central to those talks are fiscal statutes relating to the Church in Israel. AsiaNews said it had “both documentation and testimony” of Abrahamoff’s initiative.

However, Israel’s embassy to the Holy See...READ MORE

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Israel Seizing Church Funds?

06/08/2009 Comment

Israel’s Chief Tax Collector has seized the funds of Catholic Church institutions in Israel in order to force them to submit to fiscal demands which he considers appropriate.

According to AsiaNews, Yehezkel Abrahamoff of Israel’s Finance Ministry has ordered the seizure to force the Church to pay taxes without waiting for the outcome of ongoing negotiations on the 1993 Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and Israel. Central to those talks are fiscal statutes relating to the Church in Israel.

AsiaNews says it has received both documentation and testimony of Abrahamoff’s initiative. The institutions concerned have asked not to be named for fear of reprisals on the part of the...READ MORE

Filed under israel

Mideast Responds to Obama

06/05/2009 Comment

Obama speaks yesterday in Cairo. (CNS/Reuters)

Tomorrow’s edition of L’Osservatore Romano reports on reactions from some Middle East Church leaders to President Barack Obama’s speech yesterday to the Muslim world. 

Summing up their reaction as “an important speech, but these are words, not deeds,” the Vatican’s semi-official newspaper says the reaction has mainly been one of appreciation for the president’s openness to dialogue, but coupled with a wish to make the words concrete.

The paper begins by quoting Bishop Youssef Ibrahim Sarraf, the Chaldean bishop of Cairo: “It is the speech we have wanted for so long,” Bishop Sarraf said. “The president has had the courage to make it, choosing Egypt for its location and...READ MORE

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JPII Announcement in 2009?

06/04/2009 Comment

John Paul II at Denver's World Youth Day in 1993. (CNS)

Joaquin Navarro-Valls has said Pope Benedict XVI could announce the beatification of Pope John Paul II as early as this year.

In an interview today with the Italian newspaper, Il Sole 24 Ore, John Paul II’s former press spokesman added to recent comments from Vatican officials who have said recent events won’t prevent the cause from going forward.

Navarro-Valls said two key “technical” steps — the decree on heroic virtues given by the cardinals and bishops of the congregation and the publication of the decree on a miracle (not attributed to natural causes) — are currently missing, but “may come this year.”

“At that point,” he added, “the Pope can decide the date of the...READ MORE

Filed under beatification, john paul ii

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About Edward Pentin

Edward Pentin
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Edward Pentin began reporting on the Pope and the Vatican with Vatican Radio before moving on to become the Rome correspondent for the National Catholic Register. He has also reported on the Holy See and the Catholic Church for a number of other publications including Newsweek, Newsmax, Zenit, The Catholic Herald, and The Holy Land Review, a Franciscan publication specializing in the Church and the Middle East. Follow on Twitter @edwardpentin