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THURSDAY      June 10, 1999      SECTION TWO       vol 10, no. 112

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

Events that happened this day in Church History

    On this day in 1429 the "Maid of Orleans," better known as Saint Joan of Arc led her French troops into the beseiged city of Orleans to wrest it back from the Earl of Suffolk who had claimed the city for Britain. On June 18, 1429 it would fall with the French reclaiming the city thanks to the valiant efforts of Joan of Arc who would garner many enemies because of her brashness, both politically and hierarchically. For other pertinent events throughout the centuries that are memorable in Church history today, click on MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES

Historical Events in Church Annals for June 10:


    Today is the Tenth Thursday in Ordinary Time while tomorrow is the Feast of the SACRED HEART OF JESUS followed by Saturday's Feast of the IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY. For the readings, liturgies, meditations and vignette on the Feasts of the Two Hearts, click on DAILY LITURGY.

Thursday, June 10, 1999

Friday, June 11, 1998



    In honor of the Immaculate Heart of Mary we present the Preface for her Mass on Saturday:

From the height of the cross, Christ entrusted His Mother to the beloved disciple to care for her in His stead. John is a symbol of the human race, and thus Mary becomes the Mother of all so that divine grace would be bestowed more abundantly on us who have believed and experienced the inexhaustible riches of her heart.

Daily Coverage of the Pope's Visit Home

        In our continuing coverage of the Holy Father's historic eighth return to his native homeland and the longest singular trip in his twenty-year pontificate, we present a special section providing the latest in-depth stories on the Pope's papal pilgrimage from the major Catholic news services covering the Vicar of Christ. For more, click on THE POPE IN POLAND


Day of Rest in Holiday Forests and Lakes of Youth


81% of Poles Consider Pope Decisive Figure for Country


    VATICAN ( -- On Wednesday, June 9, Pope John Paul II took a break from the busy schedule of his visit to Poland. He will spend the day resting near Lake Wigry, and make no public appearances for the day. After this respite-- which was built into the papal schedule in advance-- he will resume his public appearances on Thursday.

with a Catholic slant

provided by
Catholic World News Service
and Noticias Eclesiales Church News and ZENIT International News Agency



Holy See Applauds Return to Negotiations at U.N. Headquarters while Belgrade Archbishop says Serbs and Albanians share blame

    VATICAN CITY, JUN 9 (ZENIT).- In commenting on the meeting of the U.N. Security Council, which should adopt the resolution bringing peace to Yugoslavia, in its June 10 edition L'Osservatore Romano expresses the hope "that the arms will finally be silenced."

    But the Holy See newspaper is cautious. "Prudence prevents the announcement of peace, but the diplomatic work seems to be coming to an end with a peaceful solution to the grave crisis in Kosovo."

    From the very beginning, the Holy See maintained this was the only solution; that is, that negotiations return to the heart of the United Nations, respecting the norms of international law.

    On June 3, John Paul II met with U.N. secretary general, Kofi Annan, at the Pope's request, to encourage the U.N. to take its place as protagonist in the pacification of Kosovo. That same day, Holy See spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls said the Holy Father stressed "the importance that the end of hostilities be accomplished under the aegis of the United Nations, that there be a simultaneous return of the refugees to the region of Kosovo, and that the help of an international peace force be accepted by all parts."

    Following the U.N. resolution, Kosovo will have a multinational force to protect it. The fundamental question continues to be dates. According to L'Osservatore Romano, both Russia and China, which have the veto power in the U.N., want NATO's bombing to stop before the adoption of the resolution. "There are important details that remain to be resolved, but the latest diplomatic statements are characterized by optimism," states the newspaper.

    The resolution will be adopted by the Security Council in virtue of article VII of the U.N. Charter, which authorizes the use of force in certain circumstances. The situation in Kosovo is defined as a threat to peace and stability in the world. This allows the international community to intervene in a conflict that Belgrade had described up to now as an internal question. Kosovo will be controlled by a temporary administration, under the authority of a representative of the U.N. secretary general.

    In the preamble, the draft of the resolution confirms the commitment to safeguard the territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, of which Kosovo forms a part. But, according to the United States, the door to independence is not being closed. In any event, the resolution only refers to restoration of the autonomy removed from Kosovo ten years ago by the then president of Serbia and current president of the Yugoslavian Federation -- Slobodan Milosevic.

    In spite of Russia's objections, the resolution requests that the multinational force give full cooperation to the International Criminal Court of The Hague in investigating war crimes of war and crimes against humanity in former Yugoslavia. As is well known, some days ago the Court accused Milosevic and four other influential Belgrade politicians and military men of such crimes.

    Meanwhile, from the Vatican in a related story by CWN, in an interview published by the Italian weekly Famiglia Cristiana, Archbishop Franc Perko of Belgrade argues that Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic is "not solely responsible" for the warfare in the Balkans. The archbishop also says that the deployment of an international peacekeeping force in Kosovo would be "a benefit for Serbia."

    In the Famiglia Cristiana interview, which appeared on the newsstands on June 9, Archbishop Perko says that he has high hopes for a compromise agreement that could end the fighting. Such a compromise, he continued, would be possible only if "all the parties involved-- the Serbs, the Albanians, and NATO-- are ready to make some sacrifices."

    The archbishop charged that "there are two sides responsible for the tragedy in the Balkans. The Serbian leadership, he said, has taken advantage of the "historical and spiritual ties" which Serbs feel toward Kosovo, in order to mount their offensive, since an independent Kosovo "is inconceivable to the Serbian citizen." On the other hand, he said, the ethnic Albanians of Kosovo had "exaggerated" the wrongs they have suffered under Serbian government, and because they began their own armed struggle for autonomy they should bear "part of the responsibility for the explosion of violence in the region." These facts have been submerged by the inflamed rhetoric surrounding the conflict, the archbishop noted. He cited the words of Pope John Paul II: "Truth is always the first casualty of war."

    Archbishop Perko has consistently argued in favor of an international peacekeeping presence in Kosovo; in fact he was once detained and questioned by Serbian authorities because of his strong public stand on that issue. "Only that sort of contingent could give the refugees the necessary confidence, and guarantee their security so that they can return to Kosovo." He added that only an international force would be able to disarm the Kosovo liberation fighters. In the absence of such intervention, he reasoned, Serbian troops in Kosovo would face the prospect of a long, costly conflict with Kosovar guerillas.


    BOGOTA ( - The guerilla movement that reportedly kidnapped more than 140 Catholic churchgoers last week and 25 airliner passengers in April took 11 more hostages over the weekend, officials said on Monday.

    A group of National Liberation Army rebels in motorboats waylaid a sportfishing expedition on the Magdalena River near Barranquilla on Sunday and took between eight and 11 of the 30 people hostage. Last Sunday, ELN rebels took 140 people from a Catholic church in Cali and continue to hold about 55 people from that raid, and in April kidnapped 41 people from an Avianca Airlines flight and still hold 25 of those people.

    Jose Alfredo Escobar, the government anti-kidnapping czar, insisted that ELN was behind the kidnappings although no one has yet claimed responsibility. He added that he expected ELN to release about half of the remaining Cali hostages within the next few days.

    Meanwhile, sources with the Cuban-backed National Liberation Army (ELN) rebels quoted by the Colombian newspaper El Expectador have said that a leader of the group met a "top Vatican authority" in Rome and apologized for kidnapping churchgoers last week.

    The ELN sources told El Expectador that leader Nicolas Rodriguez Bautista -- known as "Gabino" -- traveled to Germany and the Vatican to announce the ELN's decision to release 25 hostages from a commercial airplane kidnapped in April, as well as the "50 or 52" hostages remaining in hands of the ELN after the kidnapping of churchgoers at a Catholic church in the city of Cali.

    "As a response, the ELN expects the government to agree to create a demilitarized area to allow the ELN hold its national convention," the source said. According to the report, "Gabino" met last week with a "Vatican authority close to Pope John Paul II" and apologized for kidnapping churchgoers. "This was a wrong decision, a mistake that will be corrected," Gabino allegedly told the Vatican authority.

    The source also said that the meeting of "Gabino" at the Vatican was mediated by Bernd Schmidbauer, former German Minister of the Interior and at present a Social Christian congressman at the German Parliament. The Archbishop of Cali, Isaias Duarte Cansino, reacted to the ELN's statement by recalling that the Holy Father "has energetically condemned the kidnapping of churchgoers." He added, "If the rebels want to express any regret for their savage action, the only credible way to do it is by releasing all hostages without any precondition."


    WASHINGTON, DC ( - The US House of Representatives voted on Tuesday to prevent the federal government from testing, developing, or approving any drugs intended to induce abortion, such as the French RU-486 pill.

    The House passed the bill 217-214, but the Senate is not expected to approve it. Last year, the Senate failed to approve the measure after it was passed by the House then. "There is something terribly wrong" when the Food and Drug Administration uses taxpayers' dollars for "drugs that are designed to kill unborn children," said sponsor Rep. Tom Coburn, R-Oklahoma. "Another baby pesticide that kills babies," said Rep. Christopher Smith, R-New Jersey. "Come up with drugs that heal."

    The ban was part of the $61 billion agriculture, food, and drug funding bill approved by the House by 246-183.

    In Dallas, Monday Texas Gov. George W. Bush, a leading candidate for the Republican nomination for US president next year, signed into law a bill requiring that parents be notified when their underage daughters seek abortions.

    Under the law, effective Sept. 1, an unmarried girl under age 18 cannot get an abortion until one of her parents is notified or she gets a judge's permission. The law does not require the parent's consent. Bush said the new law respects the sanctity of the family and protects life.

    Bush has said the law will reduce the number of abortions in the state and "involve parents in this major decision of their minor daughters." Of the 84,870 abortions reported in 1997 to the Texas Department of Health, about 5,500 were performed on minors. Bush had come under fire from some pro-life conservatives for not being strong enough on the pro-life issue as he begins his national campaign for president.

    While in Florida's state capitol of Tallahassee, George's brother Florida Governor Jeb Bush on Wednesday signed into a law authorizing the creation of a new "Choose Life" vanity license plate, upholding a campaign pledge to sign the bill.

    The new plate, which will be available later this year, will feature crayon-like drawings of a boy and a girl holding hands under the "Choose Life" slogan. The plate was approved after the group Choose Life, Inc. collected 10,000 signatures and $30,000 for the mandatory fee before the Legislature will consider it.

    Critics of the plate say "Choose Life" is a political message making it inappropriate for a license plate. The Choose Life plate was one of a half-dozen new specialty plates that won approval this year, bringing the total available in Florida to 51.


    NEW YORK ( - A New York newspaper reported on Wednesday that the Vatican will open a store in New York City to sell items inspired by art in the Vatican Museum.

    The New York Post said the store will bed linens, china, gift boxes, stationery, floor tiles, and other items. No site has been picked, but an architect has been hired and says the stores will have a Vatican theme, complete with ceiling frescoes.

    The Post reports the New York City store will be the first of over 400 around the world. The mass marketing effort follows in the steps of the Vatican Library Line of merchandise, which includes rosary boxes, pens, key chains, and rings with prayers inscribed inside. All earnings from the stores go toward renovations of the library and museum.


    Today, tying in with our article about the shortage of priests in our feature series WHERE IS HOLY MOTHER CHURCH HEADING AS WE NEAR THE MILLENNIUM, we present the site of the national Catholic weekly that has seemingly been around forever and which has been a thorn in the side of the liberal modernists for as long to which we echo "Amen!" Therefore we present today THE WANDERER site maintained by Wanderer publisher A.J. Matt Jr.'s son Joe Matt.

Click here to return to SECTION ONE or click here to return to the graphics front page of this issue.

June 10, 1999 volume 10, no. 112   DAILY CATHOLIC