Vatican Media Watch

Vatican Names Bishop for New Diocese

NEWINDPRESS.COM, Aug. 17 — The Vatican named Father Robert Miranda as the first bishop of the newly created Diocese of Gulbarga, India, the Indian news service reported.

Vatican ambassador to India, Archbishop Pedro Quintana will confer the episcopal ordination on the designate Bishop Miranda, along with other bishops, in Gulbarga on Aug. 18. The districts of Gulbarga, Bidar and Bijapur form the new diocese, the 150th in India. There are 25 parishes in the diocese.

Bishop-designate Miranda served as a priest for 23 years in Bidar. The report said growth of Catholic population and increase in social activities are the two main criteria for the creation of a new diocese.

Priest Murdered During Robbery

SABC, Aug. 12 — A Roman Catholic priest has been shot dead during a robbery at Hlokozi in southern KwaZulu-Natal, the South African Broadcasting Service reported.

Father Smilo Mngadi, the Marianhill Diocese spokesperson, says Father Bennedict Mkhize was shot by a man wearing a balaclava and died on the scene.

Mkhize's colleagues fled the mission when they heard gunshots. Mngadi says they are concerned that criminals are targeting places of worship.

According to the report, the death of Father Mkhize comes only weeks after senior Bishops Themba Mngoma and Mansuet Biyase died of ill health last month.

King Juan Carlos Requests Meeting with Holy Father

AGENZIA GIORNALISTICA ITALIA, Aug. 16 — Pope Benedict XVI will meet with King Juan Carlos of Spain, suggesting that the king wanted to discuss the country's legalization of homosexual “marriage,” the website for the Italian news service reported.

After the private hearings with the ambassadors of Venezuela, Paraguay and Ecuador, the Pope will meet the Spanish king and queen on Sept. 5. Juan Carlos had asked the Spanish ambassador to the Holy See to meet Benedict, and this was interpreted by some observers as an opportunity for the Vatican to express dissent on recent laws approved by the Zapatero cabinet, including same-sex “marriage.”

The report added that on Sept. 14, Pope Benedict will be at the Vatican to bless the statue dedicated to Opus Dei founder St. Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer, and, on Sept. 30, he will pay a visit to the children hospitalized at the Bambino Gesu pediatric hospital in Rome, as both John XXIII and John Paul II did at the beginning of their office.

Vatican Helps ‘John Paul’ Actor Get a U.S. Visa

CBC ARTS, Aug 14 — The actor who plays Pope John Paul II in a new movie had trouble getting into the U.S. from Italy for a recent publicity visit, until the new Pope intervened, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corp.

Piotr Adamcyzk, 33, plays the late Pope in the Hallmark Channel movie “A Man Who Became Pope,” which aired Aug. 15.

Pope Benedict recently screened the movie for Roman Catholic cardinals, bishops, priests and other Church officials. They were so impressed with Adamcyzk's portrayal that when they heard of the actor's trouble getting a visa, they stepped in to make his U.S. publicity trip possible.

Adamcyzk met with John Paul before starring in the movie, the report said. “I felt like that 6-year-old boy all over again,” Adamcyzk said. “The Pope looked at me and said ‘You must be crazy. Why would anyone make a movie of my life? I'm just a man.’”