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TUESDAY      November 3, 1998      SECTION TWO       vol 9, no. 215

To print out entire text of Today's issue, print this section as well as SECTION ONE

"Do not harden your hearts."

      Those are some of the first words from Our Lady in the 261st message and continued in her 262nd message of 1992 as conveyed to the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart. Mary reminds us all that satan is so clever and if we let up, if we go slack and forget our own spiritual welfare as well as the welfare of our neighbor he will blind us to what our goal truly is - eternal life. Our Lady laments that the evil one has penetrated every corner of this global village including her Divine Son's Holy Church and begs all to make reparation and divest ourselves of the shackles of worldly possessions that hinder our efforts to fulfill the Divine Will. For messages number 261 and 262, click on "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..."

Messages Two Hundred Sixty-one and Two Hundred Sixty-two

Message Two Hundred Sixty-one, December 2, 1992

(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)

Message Two Hundred Sixty-two, December 7, 1992

(Eve of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception)
(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)


     Today is the Thirty-first Tuesday in Ordinary Time and the Feast of Saint Martin de Porres, Religious, while tomorrow is the Feast of Saint Charles Borromeo, Bishop For the readings, liturgies, meditations and vignettes of these saints, click on LITURGY FOR THE DAY.

Tuesday, November 3, 1998

Feast of Saint Martin de Porres, Religious

Wednesday, November 4, 1998


      Today's prayer is taken from the Opening Prayer for today's Mass honoring Saint Martin de Porres:

Lord, You led Martin de Porres by a life of humility to eternal glory. May we follow his example and be exalted with him in the kingdom of Heaven.

with a Catholic slant

provided by Catholic World News Service



      VATICAN ( -- For Pope John Paul II-- who was ordained to the priesthood on November 1-- the feast of All Saints carries a special significance. At his Sunday Angelus audience, the Pope said that this feast should vivify the faith of the living, as they consider the courageous witness of those who have gone before them.

      "The saints are those who, in each ear, have lived their with courage, giving witness to Christ without weakness or compromise," the Pope said. They are models for the living, he continued, "and they come to our help with their constant intercession."

      But the joy of the feast is always linked with the sorrow of the feast of All Souls, the Pontiff said. That sorrow reflects the memories of loved ones who have died, and also the realization that many people have become "victims violence and warfare." The joy and sorrow of the two days are linked, he said, in "a synthesis which finds in Christ the foundation and certainty of consolation."

      The feast of All Saints is celebrated at the Vatican with a special Mass in the city's Verano cemetery, celebrated this year by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, the papal vicar for Rome. Pope John Paul himself will spend some time in prayer in the grottos of St. Peter's Basilica, at the tombs of deceased pontiffs.

      November 2, the feast of All Souls, is observed as a holy day at the Vatican, and most offices of the Holy See are closed.


      VATICAN ( -- As Pope John Paul II sees it, the need for an eventual request for pardon on behalf of the Church must be based on "exact information" rather than inaccurate impressions. For that reason the Pope is taking a special interest in the special conference on the Inquisition, which brought a group of 60 historians to Rome last week.

      In his own address to the participants, on Saturday, October 31, the Holy Father observed: "The Inquisition reflects a tormented phase in the history of the Church." He recalled how in Tertio Mellinnio Adveniente he had encouraged an examination of conscience, conducted "in a spirit open to repentance," of the times when "methods of intolerance and even of violence" were employed "in the service of the truth."

      Last week's conference, the Pope said, is a "first step" in the process of that examination. He explained that the historians were being asked not to render a final moral judgment, but to "offer help in reconstructing as precisely as possible the events, actions, and mindsets of that day, in the light of the historical context of that era." The quest for that sort of information requires a sort of scholarly detachment, he said, because it means overcoming "images conveyed by public opinion, often charged with passionate emotions."

      The faithful of the Church should be acquainted with her past, the Pontiff said, just as members of any society should recognize their history. As the 20th century comes to a close, he suggested, many political leaders should also lead their people in an examination of conscience, in an effort to bring closure to the ideological conflicts, ethnic struggles, and other forms of hatred which have prompted so much killing in recent generations.

      Also, in an address to the Pontifical Council for Health-Care Workers, Pope John Paul II has stressed the moral obligation to resist euthanasia.

      Speaking to participants in a conference on care for the elderly-- organized in response to the UN's pronouncement of 1999 as the year of the elderly-- the Pope said that no "human authority" can make euthanasia legitimate.

      "The temptation toward euthanasia appears as one of the most alarming symptoms of the culture of death," the Holy Father said. He decried "the secular mentality which has no respect of life, especially when it is weak."

      To counteract that tendency, the Pope said, the Church must devise "strategies to help" the aged, especially by encouraging recognition of their innate human dignity. Those efforts must also help the elderly to appreciate their own worth, he said, so that they do not "think themselves useless, and do not reach the point of asking for death." Strong family relationships form an important element of that strategy, he said.


      ZAMBOANGA, Philippines ( - An Italian priest held captive by Muslim rebels for two months in the southern Philippines pleaded with his superiors to speed up their work for his release in a letter dated last Friday.

      Father Luciano Benedetti said in the letter, released by Catholic officials on Monday, that his life in captivity in difficult. "Life is very difficult here. If you can do anything ... please speed up my release," wrote the 54-year-old missionary from Treviso, Italy. The kidnappers have demanded 15 million pesos (US$371,400) in exchange for the priest's release.

      Earlier reports had led police to believe that Father Benedetti was dead. Zamboanga police said last weekend they had sent teams to dig up the body of a supposed foreigner which villagers said had been buried near where he was believed to be held. In his letter, Benedetti said his kidnappers were treating him well but moving him every night, said Father Giulio Mariani, regional superior of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions.

      Meanwhile, persecution continued in the region of New Delhi where the western Gujrath state which has seen nearly three dozen attacks on Christians since March recorded another Hindu fundamentalist attack on Christians with help of police.

      Nearly 150 delegates attending a convention by the Alpha Missionary Movement (AMM) were forced out of their lodgings early Friday morning by members of the Hindu fundamentalist group Bajrang Dal which used "sticks, belts, chains, and fists to mercilessly beat up the delegates as they were forced into the streets," AMM leaders complained to the governor of Gujrath.

      More than two dozen police responded to the attack, but they remained "mute spectators to the whole scene" as has happened in many of the recent attacks on Christians in Gujrath ever since the pro-Hindu Bharatiya Janata Party came to power in March in the state, said the AMM statement. Forty people were injured in the initial attack including one person who was pushed from a second floor window. Others who came to inquire about the attack were also abused and taken into custody by police and were beaten and detained overnight. No arrests were made among the Hindu group.

      Meanwhile, another group claiming to be from Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) arrived at the convention in the early morning along with 15 policemen. After pulling down the stage decorations, the group went inside the campus where other delegates were staying. The group stole Bibles and destroyed them, and beat up the delegates, the AMM statement said.

      "These painful events are yet another glaring example of the continued aggression and persecution of minorities in this state that have graphically escalated during recent times. We are victims of the hate campaign and a vicious agenda propagated by Hindu fundamentalist groups that have no regard whatsoever for the law or the government or the rights of minorities or religious groups," they said. The group urged the governor "to uphold the rights and religious affiliation of every Indian citizen."


      LONDON ( - The former president of Ireland, Mary Robinson, said in her recent authorized biography that Ireland should legalize abortion and added that she probably influenced the outcome of a referendum that legalized divorce, according to excerpts published in the Sunday Times of London.

      Robinson, who is now the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said she believes abortion should legal in Ireland under some circumstances, since some women travel to Britain for the procedure anyway. "It would be healthier to be more mature about ourselves, more honest," she said. "Even for a country that regrets and feels a great sense of loss at the termination of life, it would be a preferable situation. It would be a kind of coming to terms with the problem instead of exporting it and moralizing about it."

      The former president also said she probably influenced the outcome of the 1995 divorce referendum which won by a small majority. Under Irish law, the president should stay neutral in such campaigns.


"The intention in the human heart is like water far below the surface, but the man of intelligence draws it forth. "

Proverbs 20: 5

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November 3, 1998 volume 9, no. 215   DAILY CATHOLIC