July 31 - August 1, 2000,    vol. 11, no. 128



with a Catholic slant

News Ticker from Catholic World News For more from CWN and other Catholic wire services, see stories below

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Time to send in the cavalry to determine the Calvary's fate as US turns to the Holy See for help on the Holy City
US Secretary of State Madeleine AlbrightArchbishop Jean-Louis Tauran, Vatican Secretary for the Relations with States    With the collapse of the the sensitive and delicate Mid-East Peace Talks at Camp David last week, the United States has turned to old reliable: The Vatican to try to salvage something from the talks and to help resolve the Jerusalem factor where all might openly practice their faith in freedom, regardless of who controls what parts of the Holy City. To that end, the Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has requested a meeting with the Holy Father's special envoy Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran, Vatican Secretary of State for Relations with States. The two met before over the Kosovo situation and East Timor so they're not new to the process. Yet the circumstances are a bit different and it will be a delicate situation at best, especially in light of Pope John Paul II's call for a unilateral Jerusalem under international control to assure religious freedoms. continued inside.

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Indonesian President confronts Military with probing questions as to illegal and immoral funding of Jihad in Moluccas
Indonesia    On practically the same day former dictator Suharto was brought up on charges of war crimes, he and his military henchmen are the main culprits according to the current President Abdurrahman Wahid who strongly chastised one of the highest ranking military men in an effort to stop the flow of weapons and troops to the Moluccas where countless Christians are being murdered in a holy Jihad that is not approved by Wahid. In fact, he is dead set against this terror urged on by Suharto and his top man General Wirento. continued inside.

Jerusalem Latin Patriarch sees positives despite setback of Mideast Peace Talks
   Though the road to total peace and religious freedoms in Jerusalem continues to be blocked right now due to the breakup of the Camp David Peace talks, Jerusalem Latin Patriarch Michel Sabbah believes lemonade can be made out of the lemons that are the stalled talks. He reviewed the Camp David failure, believing that in future negotiations on this city, the Church will be able to present its point of view. "Everyone gives their opinion. Our position is always the same: it is necessary that peace be established in Jerusalem and, to accomplish this, the rights of all, Palestinians and Israelis, must be recognized. We do not play political games, but affirm that to construct peace it is necessary to have true justice. The Church's voice has been heard, the two parties have consulted us. This means that in the future, when reference is made to the holy places, the Church will be asked to express its point of view." continued inside.

Holy Father extolls God's mysteries during Wednesday Audience, cautions us to cultivate abilitity to wait and wonder.
   How can the mystery of God be discovered in a technological society that is so often superficial? This was the question John Paul II addressed this morning, when he met with 20,000 pilgrims in St. Peter's Square, during his Wednesday general audience. The Pontiff's response can be summarized in two words; we must learn to "wait" and "wonder." Since Jesus' coming 2,000 years ago, "God the Father has crossed the threshold of his transcendence. Through his Son, Jesus Christ, he has come down to our streets, and his Spirit of life and love has penetrated the heart of his creatures." Since then, "God has been close to us, especially when our 'face is sad'; then, as with his disciples of Emmaus, with the warmth of his words, our hearts begin to burn in ourbreast," the Pontiff said. However, "God's passage is mysterious, and requires pure eyes to be discovered, and ears disposed to listening." Thus, the Holy Father's first meeting with pilgrims after his summer vacation became a spiritual adventure in search of the mystery of God. continued inside.

Missionary Priests, Nuns and Lay Catholics released unharmed in Angola by UNITA rebels
Angola    Two Angolan Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette, Father Pedro Chingando and Father Joaquim Hatewa, one nun, six novices, five postulants, and about twenty lay people were released unharmed Tuesday after being abducted by a group of armed men in uniform a week earlier. They had been taken because the UNITA rebels falsely misconstrued that the Church was involved in military operations, when in effect, they were neutral with care for those they were charged to protect. When the rebels realized this, their release came quickly and peacefully. continued inside.

Egyptian Muslims murder Coptic over construction of a church issue
   A Coptic Christian was killed and three others injured in a dispute with Muslim neighbors over the construction of a church on Wednesday. Fakhri Ayyad Mus'ad, 38, was shot after Muslim farmers discovered that unlicensed construction work by a Copt in a nearby field was a church. Egypt, which is 90 percent Muslim, requires special permits for the construction or renovation of a church building. Disputes over church work and Christian activity are common in Egypt. continued inside.

Ruling that the Ten Commandments must go is not only Kentucky's loss but America's as well
Kentucky   Everyone's heard of the Ten Commandments and everyone's heard of the song "My Old Kentucky Home," but the two don't go together anymore thanks to a Federal Judge's ruling that overturns a state law that allowed the decalogue given to Moses to be displayed on capitol grounds in Frankfort, Kentucky. It's a sad day in this blue grass country where Abraham Lincoln was born and lived the principles of the Laws handed down by the Almighty. We don't know about you, but we've had it with these liberal judges that are striking down state laws left and further left! continued inside.

Vatican stresses vital need for Sudan to grant religious rights and democracy to all during Khartoum's Foreign Minister visits Rome
SudanArchbishop Jean-Louis Tauran   Sudan's Foreign Affairs Minister, Mustafa Osman Ismail, was received Wednesday morning by his Vatican counterpart, Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran, Secretary for Relations with States. Speaking to the press, Vatican spokesman Joaquín Navarro-Valls said that "the Sudanese Minister illustrated the latest political developments carried out in the country toward a multiparty and federal system, in part for the purpose of ending the conflict that has been devastating southern Sudan for long years." In addition, the statement discloses diplomatically that "the meeting also became an occasion to review the situation of the Catholic Church in the country, and the way that conditions of life of the Catholic community can be improved, in order that the community may participate more actively in the development of Sudanese society." continued inside.

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July 31 - August 1, 2000     volume 11, no. 128    Front Page