THURSDAY     March 9, 2000    vol. 11, no. 49    SECTION TWO

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SECTION TWO Contents: Go immediately to the article:
  • Daily LENTEN REFLECTION
  • Daily LITURGY
  • Daily WORD
  • SIMPLY SHEEN
  • Monthly Medjugorje Message for February 25th
  • Be an angel! Whatever you can send helps keep the DailyCATHOLIC on-line and reaching countless more souls.
    WORLDWIDE NEWS & VIEWS with a Catholic slant:
  • Clarifying the confusion over the "Memory and Reconciliation" document and intent
  • California voters keep marriage sacred with overwhelming mandate at the ballot box
  • Israeli Jews ready to receive Pope with open arms
  • Pope responds to Mozambique aid with generosity and love
  • Annual Report of "Cor Unum" reveals Pope authorized thirty million in charity for the less fortunate last year
  • Carnival alternative big hit with sincere Catholics in Rio


  • Special Prayer for Thursday after Ash Wednesday

      O God, Who by sin art offended and by penance appeased, mercifully regard the prayers of Thy suppliant people: and turn aside the scourges of Thine anger, which we deserve for our sins. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reignith with Thee in the unity of the Holy Spirit, One God forever and ever. Amen.

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    DAILY LITURGY

       Today's liturgy is shared as Thursday after Ash Wednesday and the optional feast of Saint Frances of Rome, religious while tomorrow we observe Friday after Ash Wednesday. For the readings, liturgies, meditations, and profile on Saint Frances of Rome, see DAILY LITURGY.

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    The DAILY WORD

    "If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. For he who would save his life will lose it; but he who loses his life for My sake will save it. For what does it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, but ruin or lose himself?"


    Luke 9: 23-25

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    Giving to others brings peace!

       They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but the words of Bishop Fulton J. Sheen have been known to launch a thousand images in one's mind, one of the ways this late luminary did so much to evangelize the faith. Because of the urgency of the times and because few there are today who possess the wisdom, simplicity and insight than the late Archbishop who touched millions, we are bringing you daily gems from his writings. The good bishop makes it so simple that we have dubbed this daily series: "SIMPLY SHEEN".

    "There is more happiness in rejoicing in the good of others, than in rejoicing in our own good. The receiver rejoices in his good; the giver in the joy of others and to such comes the peace nothing in the world can give."

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    February 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message

    NOTE: We respectfully recognize and accept the final authority regarding apparitions, locutions and prophecies presently being reported around the world rests with the Holy See of Rome and the Magisterium of Holy Mother Church to whose judjment we humbly and obediently submit.

      "Dear children! Wake up from the sleep of unbelief and sin, because this is a time of grace which God gives you. Use this time and seek the grace of healing of your heart from God, so that you may see God and man with the heart. Pray in a special way for those who have not come to know God's love, and witness with your life so that they also can come to know God and His immeasurable love. Thank you for having responded to my call."

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    WORLDWIDE NEWS & VIEWS with a Catholic slant:


      The Holy Father will be making an unprecedented, humble step when he asks for forgiveness on behalf of Holy Mother Church

        As the secular news media worldwide continues to misunderstand the intent and kind of ceremony the Holy Father will conduct this coming Sunday, which we are calling "Mea Culpa Sunday," when the Vicar of Christ will lead all the faithful in petition to God for reconciliation and forgiveness from sins of the past. The Theologian of the Papal Household, Father Georges Cottier explains what is entailed even though some Italian Jews and other fringe groups feel it is not enough. Our question: Is anyone other than the Church apologizing for the sins of the past or are all these other groups sinless? continued inside

    CHURCH ASKS FOR FORGIVENESS: "POPE OPENS NEW PAGE IN THEOLOGY"
    Statements by Fr. Georges Cottier, Theologian of Papal Household while Italian Jewish Leader wants more from the Church

        VATICAN CITY, MAR 8 (ZENIT/CWN).- The international press has given much space to the document "Memory and Reconciliation: the Church and Faults of the Past," presented in the Vatican yesterday. In the vast majority of cases, the document was well received, but there have been some misunderstandings. Fr. Georges Cottier, secretary of the International Theological Commission that authored the document, and theologian of the Papal Household, spoke to Vatican Radio to clarify a number of issues.

        "The Holy Father's initiative is so surprising and so stupendous that it requires reflection. It has surprised many people, including Catholics themselves, some of whom have said that perhaps he has gone a bit too far, that it is somewhat imprudent. Others wondered how it would be received by the majority of Catholics," Fr. Cottier disclosed.

        The French theologian explained: "We had to reply, because it is a pastoral problem. We had to make it understood that this looking at the truth of the Church's past allows for clear discernment of what the Spirit does in the Church as a result of the behavior of her children, who are often sinners. We had to make manifest the social dimensions of our acts, because many sins of Christians scandalize and impede the purity of the announcement of the Gospel. In serving the truth, the Church makes herself stronger, precisely because she leans on truth itself. In our document, and in 'Tertio Millennio Adveniente,' a phrase is quoted from the Conciliar Declaration on religious liberty that states: 'truth is defended only with truth itself.' "

        Fr. Cottier then commented on the difficulty of determining what historical faults require a request for pardon. "First of all, we must speak of the faults that really existed. When speaking of the Church's past, many things are said, which are often calumnies or myths. Historical truth is the first requirement. We must speak of real events and of their real significance. Moreover, it must be said that all Christians sin -- and this is true -- but it is also true that at the beginning of Mass we always ask for forgiveness for our sins and the Church has always asked for forgiveness of sins. From my point of view, it's about seeing which sins, scandals, or anti-testimonies constitute an obstacle to people's coming to Christ and his Gospel," the Dominican theologian stressed.

        Fr. Cottier said that the document is no more than the result of the work of a group of theologians, not a pontifical decree. He invited these experts to seriously continue with this reflection. "The Pope has opened a new page in theology," Fr. Cottier concluded. ZE00030808

        Catholic World News reports that the leader of Italy's Jewish communities on Wednesday said the Catholic Church's plans for reconciliation with the sins of Christians of the past is inadequate when it comes to the Holocaust.

        Amos Luzzatto, president of the Union of Jewish Communities, told reporters that a document released this week outlining the framework of the pardon did not go far enough in speaking about the behavior of Catholics during the Holocaust which left 6 million Jews dead as well as anti-Semitism before World War II.

        "The Church not only had theological relations (with the Jews) but also political relations, with real decrees and laws which inflicted defamation, alienation, the ghettos, and the yellow star on the Jews," he said. Prior to Italian unification in 1870, the popes were political rulers over central Italy when much of what Luzzatto described took place.

        "There is no mention of this. It seems to me that to say all these things were the effect of some Christians who did not understand the Gospel message is very limiting and very doubtful," he said. "It was not 'some Christians' who issued decrees like that of Pope Paul IV to lock Jews in the ghetto ...," he said. Pope Paul IV reigned in the 16th century.

        A papal letter published in 1998 made extensive reference to the Holocaust and historic anti-Semitism among members of the Church.

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      California voters overwhelmingly back measure to preserve the sanctity of marriage between man and woman

        Alleluia for the Roman Catholic Church's strong support in California! In Super Tuesday's voting in California, Proposition 22, a highly debated issue over protecting the sanctity of heterosexual marriage against the erosion of the homosexual agenda. Over 61% of California voters decided in favor of keeping marriage exclusively between a man and a woman which closed the door on any state approval of same-sex unions until possibly the next election for gays are threatening to get the referendum on the ballot again. When they do the Church will dig in again and do all in its power and call upon the power of God to keep a complete recreation of Sodom out of California. By passing the measure, the Golden state joined 30 other states who have voted against gay marriages or same-sex rights to this date. continued inside.

    CALIFORNIA PASSES SAME-SEX MARRIAGE BAN

        SACRAMENTO (CWNews.com) - Californians passed a measure to protect the current status of legal marriage in the state by a wide margin on Tuesday.

        About 61 percent of voters approved Proposition 22, while 39 percent opposed it. The briefly worded proposal said, "Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid and recognized in California," and was a means to prevent the recognition of same-sex marriages performed in other states where it may be legalized.

        Exit polls found the measure was supported equally by men and woman and by all races and income groups. "Californians have rejected the politics of fear and division by passing Proposition 22," according to David Orgon Coolidge, director of the Marriage Law Project in Washington, DC. "Voters came together, across racial and religious lines, to reaffirm the meaning of marriage."

        Homosexual activists said they will work to have a new proposal passed through legislation, executive order, or via ballot which would grant the same legal rights to homosexual and lesbian couples as enjoyed by married couples.

        Pro-family groups, however, were emboldened by the California victory and other recent bans on same-sex marriage to predict that similar bans will soon be in place across the US. "If the liberal states of Hawaii, Alaska, and now California can do it, then the 19 other states without statutory protection for marriage can and must do it, too," said Janet Parshall, spokesman for the Family Research Council.

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      Poll shows that the Jewish people are enthusiastic about Holy Father's papal pilgrimage to Israel

         Since percentages are rampant now that Super Tuesday is still being counted and more polls will come out of the woodwork as we head for November, a new poll in Israel has been released that shows 60% of the Jewish people are eager for and support the Holy Father's planned visit to their land in two weeks during the main leg of his "Jubilee Journey." The same report reveals that the majority of the Jewish faithful admitted to ignorance about the Roman Catholic Church teachings on anti-Semitism and the Holocaust. continued inside.

    ISRAELI JEWS LOOKING FORWARD TO POPE VISIT

        JERUSALEM (CWNews.com) - A new poll on Wednesday found most Israeli Jews were looking forward to Pope John Paul II's visit to the country this month, although the majority were secular or non-practicing Jews.

        Sixty percent of Jewish Israeli said they are happy about the upcoming trip March 21-26, while only 8.3 percent of ultra-Orthodox Israelis agreed with them. Thirteen percent had a negative view.

        Dr. Ron Kronish, director of the Interreligious Coordinating Council in Israel (ICCI), said: "These findings contradict the 'conventional wisdom' that Israelis are either negative or apathetic about the Pope, Christianity and related matters."

        The ICCI said most Israelis realized the main purpose of the visit was a "pilgrimage to holy sites" or "spreading a message of peace and dialogue in the year 2000." The poll found a "high level of ignorance" about the Church's teachings on anti-Semitism and the Holocaust: only 44 percent of Israelis were aware of the Vatican's open opposition to anti-Semitism.

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    JOHN PAUL II GIVES AID TO MOZAMBIQUE
    Sends Archbishop Paul Josef Cordes To Support Flood Victims

        VATICAN CITY, MAR 8 (ZENIT).- John Paul II responded to the catastrophic news coming from Mozambique, with a $150,000 donation for the victims of cyclone Eline.

        Archbishop Paul Josef Cordes, President of the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum," the institution responsible for promoting and organizing the Church's aid and charitable activities, left Rome today as papal envoy to this devastated African country. The donation made to Mozambique comes from the Holy Father's Charity Fund and the Pontifical Work for the Propagation of the Faith. It will be allocated to the most urgent needs.

        The Catholic Church worldwide responded to the tragedy in Mozambique through national Caritas organizations. To date, $1,650 million has been collected. A Vatican Press Office statement explains that the present contribution "is only the beginning of support for a country that today faces a most uncertain future."

        The southeast of Mozambique is covered by water. There are 400 confirmed deaths, but it is feared that as the waters recede, many bodies will surface. In the midst of an unbearable fetid odor, rescue teams have prepared common graves. One million people have been affected by the cyclone.

        According to the Vatican agency "Fides," the Pontifical Missionary Works are already analyzing a long-term plan for the reconstruction of pastoral centers, churches, and social structures of the dioceses.

        Archbishop Cordes will be in Mozambique for three days. He has scheduled meetings with the country's episcopate, directors of Caritas-Mozambique, and government authorities. The St. Vincent de Paul Sisters, who were loaned a helicopter by a Spanish benefactor three months ago, have placed it at Archbishop Cordes' disposal, so that he can visit the areas most affected by the floods and express the Pope's encouragement to the victims.

        Archbishop Janusz Juliusz, Apostolic Nuncio in Mozambique, told "Fides" that the "gratitude of the Mozambican people to John Paul II is immense. His appeals and concrete help are an important support in the tragedy afflicting the country." On March 7, the Mozambican bishops published a statement expressing their gratitude to the Holy Father for the constant assistance given to the country and his repeated appeals for aid to Mozambique. ZE00030804

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    LAST YEAR JOHN PAUL II GAVE $30 MILLION IN AID
    Pontifical Council "Cor Unum" Publishes Annual Report

        VATICAN CITY, MAR 8 (ZENIT).- The Pontifical Council "Cor Unum," responsible for promoting and supporting charitable initiatives of the Church, and presided by German Archbishop Paul Josef Cordes, has published its annual report, giving figures that reflect the Holy Father's special concerns over the past year.

        On behalf of the Pope, "Cor Unum" gave a total of $1,211,600 in aid to peoples affected by natural calamities, and $555,000 to support projects for human and Christian development. In addition, the "100 Projects of the Holy Father," promoted by this Pontifical Council, donated $20 million to over 200 projects of spiritual and corporal assistance.

        The "Panis Caritatis" program, organized by "Cor Unum" in Italy, which donates part of the cost of a loaf of bread to a solidarity fund, through an agreement with producers and distributors of bread, collected $350,000 last year, which was sent to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, and Sudan.

        The papal foundation "Populorum Progressio" financed 215 micro-projects for Indian and African American poor rural communities in Latin America, amounting to a total of $1,705,900. The other papal institution created for such purposes, the "John Paul II Foundation for the Sahel," which is concerned with droughts and blighting of the 9 countries of that region, allocated $5,500,000 to the area.

        These figures do not include the direct aid the Pope gave to Eastern Churches and the missions. The previous year this amounted to $189,618,000. ZE00030810

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      Carnival alternative in Rio is a huge success!

         Mardi Gras and the Carnival are now a memory but the 30,000 who attended a special spiritual retreat in lieu of the pagan cavorting have many memories and graces. The Archdiocese of Rio, headed by Cardinal Eugenio de Araujo Sales since 1971, provided an alternative to the raucous activities with quiet time where confession and conversion were the central themes of the event with hundreds of priests available to all the faithful. continued inside.

    BRAZILIAN CARNIVAL ALTERNATIVES ACHIEVE RECORD NUMBERS

        RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL, MAR 8 (ZENIT.org).- For the past 18 years, the Catholic Charismatic Renewal has offered a spiritual retreat as an alternative to the excesses of Carnival. This year, some 30,000 people participated in Monday's Mass. Because of the growth of the event, it is no longer held in "Nossa Senhora da Piedade," as it was ten years ago. Now it is being held in Maracanăzinho stadium to accomodate the crowds.

        Confession and conversion are the central themes of the event, and 158 priests were hearing confessions throughout the event. As of Monday, 4180 confessions had been heard. The four-day rental of the stadium cost $34,500, but collections at the Masses were sufficient to pay for this cost. ZE00030821

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    March 9, 2000     volume 11, no. 49
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