National Catholic Register



BY Jim Cosgrove

June 09, 1996 Issue | Posted 6/9/96 at 2:00 AM


May 25-31

The Pope received today on official visit President Julio Maria Sanguinetti of Uruguay, to whom he expressed his wish that “the pre-set objectives for fostering the modern development of Uruguay on a foundation of ethical values, so deeply rooted in the religious and cultural tradition of the people,” be achieved.

In his speech to the president, the Holy Father highlighted the path taken by his country “to face the challenges of a peaceful and harmonious coexistence among all.” He said that “the Holy See also follows closely the efforts of Uruguayan rulers to promote adequate economic and social development, seeking solutions, in the first place, to the problem of unemployment during this difficult moment in history.”

“The theme of the defense of life,” he continued, “holds particular importance&hellips; . Legislation that protects the right to life must be accompanied by adequate social and welfare measures to protect those who prepare themselves to welcome a new life, so that any temptation to make an attempt against that same life will be removed.”

Addressing this morning the third group of prelates of the episcopal conference of Colombia, who have just completed their “ad limina” visit, the Holy Father spoke of the need to proclaim and build peace in the face of the violence that reigns in the country.

“There are reasons that allow one to hope in a process of progressively growing awareness of social solidarity in your homeland &hellips; and a more deeply felt demand for honesty and justice in public administration, so that (public administration) may seek totally the promotion of the common good. Nonetheless, other realities endure that continue to worry your Pastors’consciences.”

The Pope referred specifically to the situation of violence, “which manifests itself in very diverse forms: the abominable crime of abortion and mistreatment in the family, confrontations between guerrillas and the Regular Armed Forces, the activity of paramilitary groups, common delinquency and banditry, as well as assassinations related to drug trafficking.”

He said that “efforts on behalf of a serene coexistence based on justice, reconciliation and love must be multiplied&hellips; . In this sense you have committed yourselves to diverse initiatives, such as the Commission for National Conciliation, which wishes to offer its good offices for dialogue among the different parties, in the hope that complete and stable peace will soon be reached in your country.”

Four thousand pilgrims from the prelature of Loreto, Italy, were received by Pope John Paul this morning, who spoke of his two visits to this Marian shrine during its recently-concluded 7th centenary celebrations and reflected on what this event had given to the Church.

According to tradition, this Marian basil-ica-shrine contains the remains of the house in which Mary is said to have received the visit of the Archangel Gabriel and in which she conceived the Eternal Word. Towards the end of the 13th century, the house miraculously appeared— carried by angels according to legend— on a laurel hill in a town in the Marche region of Italy. Loreto comes from the Italian “laureto” (from Latin “lauretum”), which means laurel.

Today the Holy Father sents telegrams to Archbishop Henri Teissier of Algiers, Algeria, and to Fr. Bernardo Olivera, general abbot of the Cistercian Order of the Strict Observance, expressing his condolences for the tragic death of seven Trappist monks in Algeria.

John Paul II presided this evening at 8:30 p.m. at the Mass for the Pentecost vigil in St. Peter's Square, on the occasion of the opening of Rome's “great Citizens’ Mission.” There were 1,400 concelebrants, including cardinals and bishops present in the diocese.

Observing that with this prayer vigil “we have gathered to prepare ourselves for the Solemnity of the coming of the Holy Spirit,” he noted that this day marked the solemn beginning of the mission of the Apostles.

The Pope exhorted the priests present to “be the first tireless operators of the mission, be holy in order to be able to be obedient instruments through whom God may build the holiness of his people. It is from the parish that this mission must begin.” He encouraged the Religious to “surrender yourselves with enthusiasm” to the mission, and told members of ecclesial movements, organizations and associations: “Ensure your full and faithful collaboration to the citizens’mission, in close understanding with the pastors, parishes and the entire diocese.”

Today the Pope received in separate audiences:

Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo with Bishop-elect Francisco Gil Hellin and Msgr. Francesco Di Felice, respectively president, secretary and under-secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family.

Cardinal Bernardin Gantin, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.

Bishop Gianni Danzi, secretary of the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State, secretary general of the Governorate, with his relatives.


Before reciting the Regina Coeli, Pope John Paul reflected on today's solemnity of Pentecost, which he said recalls the “great effusion of the Holy Spirit &hellips; sent by the Resurrected (Christ) as a Consoler and the principle of a new life&hellips; . The Acts of the Apostles admirably describe the fruits of the pouring out (of the Spirit): souls open themselves to God, language barriers are overcome, and a principle of fraternity is born among peoples. Where the Spirit of God reaches, all is re-born and is transfigured.”


The Holy Father received in separate audiences this morning:

Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Four prelates of the episcopal conference of Indonesia on “ad limina” visit.

Luis Angel Casati Ferro, ambassador of Paraguay, with his family, on farewell visit.


“The Holy Father received this morning Evghenij Primakov, foreign affairs minister of the Russian Federation, on his first visit to the Vatican,” said Holy See Press Office Director Joaquin Navarro-Valls in a declaration today.

He continued: “the audience was an opportunity to inform the Holy Father of the situation in Russia and for an overview of the international situation, in particular on Western Europe, the Balkans and the Middle East. Particular attention was paid to freedom of religion and ecumenical dialogue.

“After the audience with John Paul II, Foreign Minister Primakov had a working meeting with Secretary of State Cardinal Sodano and with Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran, secretary for Relations with States.”

The Holy Father received in separate audiences this morning:

Cardinal Antonio Maria Javierre Ortas, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

Cardinal Fiorenzo Angelini and Frs. Jose Luis Redrado Marchite, O.H., and Felice Ruffini, M.I., respectively president, secretary and under-secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Assistance to Health Care Workers.

The Holy Father has nominated Fr. Anacleto Pavanetto, S.D.B., as bureau chief in the Section for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State.


In this morning's general audience the Pope spoke on the Immaculate Conception, and reminded the 21,000 pilgrims present in St. Peter's Square that, “along with Luke's passage on the Annunciation, Tradition and the Magisterium have seen in the so-called Protogospel a scriptural source on the truth” of this dogma.

In the Protogospel “the enmity between woman and her lineage, on the one hand, and the serpent and its descendants, on the other, is proclaimed. This hostility established by God demands a total absence of sin in Mary from the beginning of her life. In addition, in this unique privilege conceded to Mary, the beginning of a new order, fruit of friendship with God, is instinctually known.”

John Paul II said that “chapter 12 of the Apocalypse, which speaks of the ‘woman dressed as the sun,’ is also cited frequently as biblical testimony in favor of the Immaculate Conception of Mary.” This image “can be interpreted as an expression of the loving care of the Father who envelopes Mary in the grace of Christ and the splendor of the Spirit.”

Also (in the Apocalypse), “the ecclesial dimension of the personality of Mary is recognized: the woman dressed as the sun represents the holiness of the Church, which is fully realized in the Blessed Virgin, by virtue of a singular grace.” The interpretations of Scripture on the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception “could seem to contradict the teaching of St. Paul that all of humanity— with the exception of Christ—has sinned and needs God's grace.” “But the parallel between Adam and Christ is completed with the parallel between Eve and Mary&hellips; . It was important that, like Christ, the new Adam, Mary too, the new Eve, not know sin.”


This morning the Holy Father received 150 friends and supporters of the Pope John Paul II Cultural Center, to be built in Washington D.C., and he blessed the cornerstone which he said contains “a part from the area of the tomb of St. Peter in the Vatican Basilica.”

He told those present, including Detroit's Cardinal Adam Maida, that the cornerstone “will serve to symbolize the Center's union of purpose with the evangelizing efforts of the Successors of Peter.” Saying that “the Center will seek to make a specific contribution to Catholic intellectual life,” John Paul II pointed out that the teachings of “the Successors of the Apostle Peter will be studied, discussed and disseminated (here). It is not to be a monument to any one person, even if it bears his name, but to the centrality and continuity of the petrine ministry in the Church.”

The Holy Father recalled that “in Baltimore last October I put before American Catholics the need to challenge certain aspects of their own culture.” At times, he said, “witnessing to Christ means challenging that culture, especially when the truth about the human person is under assault. America has always wanted to be a land of the free. Today, the challenge facing America is to find freedom's fulfillment in the truth; the truth that is intrinsic to human life created in God's image and likeness&hellips; . The new Cultural Center must take up this task with competence and enthusiasm.”

This morning the Pope received in separate audiences:

Cardinal Adam Joseph Maida, archbishop of Detroit,.

Four prelates of the Episcopal Conference of Indonesia on “ad limina” visit:

Today the Holy Father erected the diocese of Ostrava-Opava, Czech Republic. He nominated Bishop Frantisek Lobkowicz as first bishop of the new diocese.


The Holy Father this morning told the group of Volunteers of Suffering from Hong Kong, and the Silent Workers of the Cross who are assisting them on their visit to Rome, that “your faith and courage in the face of suffering make this meeting a special and significant moment for the Successor of Peter.” “you already know that your sufferings can lead you into the very heart of the Christian mystery,” said Pope John Paul. “for the Christian, infirmity, disease and other afflictions are not something to which we passively resign ourselves. Suffering belongs to human transcendence:&hellips; Accepted and borne in faith, suffering becomes the instrument of our sanctification and the sanctification of others.”

The Holy Father received this morning in separate audiences:

Cardinal Jan Pieter Schotte, secretary general of the Synod for Bishops,.Archbishop Patrick Coveney, apostolic nuncio in New Zealand, in the Marshall Islands, in Tonga and in Western Samoa; apostolic delegate for the Islands of the Pacific Ocean.

Archbishop Diego Causero, apostolic nuncio in Chad and in the Central African Republic.

Bishop Walter Mixa of Eichstatt, Federal Republic of Germany.

Four prelates of the episcopal conference of Indonesia on “ad limina” visit.

Today the Pope:

Elevated the eparchy of Przemysl of the Byzantine-Ukrainian Rite to metropolitan see, with the new name of Przemysl-Varsavia, Poland. He nominated Bishop Ivan Martyniak of Przemysl as metropolitan archbishop of the new metropolitan see.

Created the eparchy of Wroclaw-Gdansk of the Byzantine-Ukrainian Rite, Poland. He nominated Msgr. Teodor Majkowicz, as the first Bishop of the new eparchy.

Nominated as auxiliaries to the Cardinal Archbishop of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Fr. Amancio Escapa Aparicio, O.C.D., vicar general of the same archdiocese, and Fr. Pablo Cedano Cedano, of the clergy of “Nuestra Senora de la Altagracia en Higuey,” Dominican Republic.