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Keeping an eye on the news from the Vatican.
BY John Lilly
Museum Targets Ticket Scalpers
ANSA, March 22 — The director of the Vatican Museums said municipal
authorities will take measures to eliminate ticket scalpers, especially with
the museums’ upcoming 500th-anniversary celebration, the Italian news service
Francesco Buranelli was speaking at a press conference marking the unveiling of a refurbished Paleo-Christian Museum, which will return into view the
famed Aldobrandini wedding room with its Guido Reni frescoes and ancient Roman murals.
Buranelli said that museum authorities would also
try to shorten lines. He did not go into details on either point but said the
Vatican had been in contact with Rome municipal authorities on the possibility
of building a second underground entrance.
Scalpers get to the museum containing the
Sistine Chapel at the crack of dawn and re-sell their tickets at inflated
prices to tourists way down the line after giving them the impression they
might not get in otherwise.
Vatican Explains Removal of Papal Title
March 22 — The
Vatican’s office for relations with other Christians said the removal of the
papal title “patriarch of the West” should benefit relations with the Orthodox
Church, not hinder them, Associated Press reported.
In the 2006 edition of the Annuario Pontificio,
the Vatican’s 2,373-page directory of bishops, Vatican offices and dioceses
around the world, the title “patriarch of the West” was left out of the list of
titles that Pope Benedict XVI holds. Some Orthodox scholars questioned the
motives behind the omission, asking whether it might mean Benedict was
signaling a broader, or at least different interpretation, of his role as Pope
and the role of patriarchates in the Eastern
traditions of Christianity.
The Vatican said that the title
was first used in 642 by Pope Theodore I, but that its exact meaning had always
been vague and, over time, had become “obsolete and, practically speaking,
The statement said, “The
renunciation of the title seeks to express a historic and theological reality,
and at the same time seeks to be a renunciation of a claim — a renunciation
that could be of benefit to ecumenical dialogue.”
of Armenians Lingers in History
ASIANEWS.COM, March 20 — Pope Benedict said the division among
Armenians wrought by Metz yeghèrn (the great evil) at the hands of the Turks
during World War I still persists, and it must be overcome, the news service
Meeting with Archbishop Nerses Bedros XIX
Tarmouni, Armenian patriarch of Cilicia,
the Holy Father said, “The Armenian Church that refers to the patriarchate of Cilicia is
certainly a full participant of historical events lived by the Armenian people
throughout the centuries and, especially, of the suffering they bore in the
name of the Christian faith in the years of the terrible persecution which
remains known in history by the sadly significant name of metz yeghèrn (the great evil). How can one
not remember, in this regard, the many invitations sent by Leo XIII to
Catholics, to go to the rescue of the poverty and suffering of the Armenian
The Christian communities of
Armenia, which are still divided, recognize St. Gregory the Illuminator as
their common father founder. The Pope said, “In recent decades all have resumed
a cordial and fruitful dialogue to the end of rediscovering their common roots.
I encourage this rediscovered fraternity and collaboration, with the hope that
new initiatives for a shared path towards full unity will spring from this.
“And if historical events have
seen the fragmentation of the Armenian Church,” he said, “may divine providence
allow that one day it will return to being united, with its hierarchy in
brotherly internal harmony and in full communion with the Bishop of Rome.”