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TUESDAY      September 7, 1999      SECTION TWO       vol 10, no. 169

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

Appreciation of the First Bishops: the Apostles

   Today we continue with our new series in the search to uncover the great treasuries of the Church contained in the great Deposit of Faith. Having completed the Four Marks of the Church, we begin today examining the structure of the Hierarchy of the Church starting with the First Bishops - the Apostles - the group of unlikely men Jesus personally appointed (cf. Luke 6: 12-16) to continue the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church He founded in fulfillment of His promise for the New Covenant. For the fifth installment, click on APPRECIATING THE PRECIOUS GIFT OF OUR FAITH


First Bishops of the Church


"Now it came to pass in those days, that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. And when day broke, He summoned His disciples; and from these He chose twelve (whom He also named Apostles): Simon, whom He named Peter, and his brother Andrew; James and John; Philip and Bartholomew; Matthew and Thomas; James the son of Alpheus, and Simon called the Zealot; Jude the brother of James and Judas Iscariot, who turned traitor."

Luke 6: 12-16

Events Today in Church History

    To allow all readers to catch up on our popular on-going series, we present a review of the period from the time of Christ when He founded the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church to the time of the Reformation and Pope Leo X, the 217th in the Petrus line early in the sixteenth century. These are installments 1 through 106. Until we are back to full strength we will continue the archives, giving readers the opportunity to catch up To read any of the 105 installments presently available in this long on-going series, click on the Archives of THE HISTORY OF THE MASS AND HOLY MOTHER CHURCH.

Historical Events in Church Annals for September 7:


    Today is the Twenty-third Tuesday in Ordinary Time while tomorrow is the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. For the readings, liturgies, meditations, and vignette of Our Lady, click on DAILY LITURGY.

Tuesday, September 7, 1999

Wednesday, September 8, 1999

Feast of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Retroactive articles on Church history available from 33 to 1515 A.D. for review

   To allow all readers to catch up on our popular on-going series, we present a review of the period from the time of Christ when He founded the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church to the time of the Reformation and Pope Leo X, the 217th in the Petrus line early in the sixteenth century. These are installments 1 through 106. Until we are back to full strength we will continue the archives, giving readers the opportunity to catch up To read any of the 105 installments presently available in this long on-going series, click on the Archives of THE HISTORY OF THE MASS AND HOLY MOTHER CHURCH.

SIMPLY SHEEN: Men cannot hide their head in the sand!

"Those ages which have an inordinate interst in the reformation of society are often those who are most heedless of the reformation of the individual. That group of educators who say that evil is nonexistent and that there are only complexes are like those who say that there are no diseases in the body, but only imagination. "

with a Catholic slant


Senseless violence erupts in East Timor as militant Muslim troops vow revenge for independence vote, attack Bishop's quarters

    Despite the passage for independence in East Timor from an overwhelming majority vote, East Timorese are not free. This fact was bitterly brought into focus over the weekend when Muslim youth, enlisted by Indonesia military, burned villages and killed hundreds, decapitating many innocent citizens. Nobel Laureate prelate Bishop Carlos Ximenes Belo was also assaulted, his residence and office burned, but he escaped harm, calling for all parties to lay down the sword and seek forgiveness so all can live in peace as he once again appealed to Indonesian President B.J. Habibie and the U.N. for protection for his people. For more, click on East Timor violence


Bishop Belo's residence attacked, yet he asks for peace and forgiveness

    DILI, East Timor ( - "Pro-Indonesian militias appear to have gone mad. They are roaming the streets hunting down independence supporters. They are furious because this will mean they lose all their privileges. Now they have nothing to lose, so they crazily attack anything and everything," according to reports by missionaries in Dili.

    "The paramilitary are against any change and they seem to be acting out of control," he said. Catholic groups in the region, fearing that the violence was engineered by the Indonesian government with the intention of fomenting civil war, launched an urgent call for an international peacekeeping force.

    On Sunday night and Monday morning, the offices and residence of Bishop Carlos Belo of Dili were set on fire by pro-Indonesian militia. The bishop was unhurt and was escorted by Indonesian army troops to Baucau, Timor's other diocese, to the residence of Bishop Basilio Do Nascimento. The bishop's house in Dili had become a refuge for crowds of terrified displaced persons. According to reports, militias first set fire to the bishop's offices, killing 25 people who had sought refuge there. Later, they torched the bishop's house, which was completely burned to the ground, but no one was hurt.

    Soon after the ballot result in favor of independence was announced on Saturday, violence erupted in Dili and Bishop Belo called on all East Timorese people to forgive each other, embracing one another as brothers and sisters and at the same time to accept the result of the ballot. "Let us forget the bitterness of life and past dark days. Look to the future that is full of promises, hope, and challenges," he said.

    "East Timor is the property of all people of good will for the peaceful, just, democratic, and prosperous future of the territory. It is not owned only by the pro-independence groups but also by those for integration with Indonesia. Let us forgive and accept each other as brothers and sisters, but also walk along together toward the future of East Timor," he said.

    Meanwhile, pro-Indonesia militia members who were disappointed at the result went on a rampage at the Hotel Mahkota, that housed UN staff members and journalists. In Jakarta, East Timorese independence leader Xanana Gusmao, who will be soon released from his house arrest, urged the UN to send peacekeeping forces immediately.

    As thousands of people flee from the widespread carnage in East Timor on Monday, they reported that the former Portugese colony's capital had become a "city of fear" with decapitated heads on sticks lining roads as anti-independence militias roamed through the streets killing with machetes and guns.

    Indonesia, the most populous Muslim nation in the world, invaded mainly Catholic East Timor in 1975 and annexed it the following year in a move not recognized by the United Nations. In January, President B.J. Habibie proposed a referendum to allow Timorese to choose either autonomy within Indonesia or full independence, with the pro-independence results of last Monday's poll being released on Saturday. Anti-independence forces, trained and armed by Indonesia's military, had killed dozens and displaced thousands as they waged a campaign to intimidate voters before the vote.

    East Timor support groups in Australia reported that more than 170 people had been slaughtered by the militias on Monday alone in the area around Dili, the capital. The numbers of those murdered in the remote villages of the territory were not known. Meanwhile, Australian military aircraft flew in and out of the Dili airport, evacuating refugees and members of international groups who were in the territory to monitor the ballot.

    In one reported incident, a priest in the town of Suai by phone told workers in Australia that 100 people had been killed there after UN workers left. He said a three-year-old child had been strangled and thrown onto a fire during the attacks in a church compound.

    Meanwhile on Monday, Indonesia's military warned that militias planned to burn all the churches in Dili that night. John Barr of the Uniting Church in Australia said Protestant leaders in Dili had informed him of the warning. "The comments that were made to me were that the militia are basically out to destroy Dili, to burn it all and this has all been set up by the military," he said. Barr added that thousands of refugees were seeking shelters in churches and panic was spreading throughout the country.

    Barr also called for an international peacekeeping force, saying the Indonesian government had no commitment to maintaining the peace. "It's not that Indonesia is incapable of maintaining security, it's that the Indonesian military are obviously behind it, they're the protagonists and somehow they've got to be stopped," he said.

Pope rejoices at Holy Land peace accord in meeting with Arafat, condemns terror in East Timor

   On Sunday at Castel Gondolfo the Holy Father received Palestinian leader Yassir Arafat fresh from his signing the peace accord with Israel that could very well clear the way for the Pope to make his "Jubilee Journey" to the Holy Land next year as planned. It was the seventh time Arafat has met with Pope John Paul II. Meanwhile, the joy of this meeting was tempered by the increasingly troublesome news from East Timor which greatly depressed His Holiness. He asked all to pray for East Timor during his Sunday Angeles. For more, click on Pope's activities.


Troubled Pontiff disheartened by renewed violence, hopeful of visiting Holy Land next year

    VATICAN ( -- Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat met with Pope John Paul II on September 5, at the papal summer residence in Castel Gandalfo.

    The meeting, which took place after the Pope's regular Angelus audience on Sunday, held a special importance insofar as it came just hours after the signing of a new peace accord between Palestinian and Israel leaders. That accord may have removed some of the obstacles to a papal voyage to the Holy Land next year.

    During his Angelus audience-- prior to the meeting with Arafat-- Pope John Paul had spoken of "comforting rays of hope" that allowed for "a hopeful future" despite the woeful current state of world events. Some observers saw those words as a reference to the Israeli-Palestinian agreement.

    The Pope's meeting with Arafat was the seventh encounter between the two, and the second such meeting to take place at Castel Gandalfo.

    Meanwhile, Pope John Paul II is following events in East Timor with deep concern, the Vatican Secretary of State announced on September 6.

    During a telephone conversation with the prime minister of Portugal-- which once ruled East Timor as a colony-- Cardinal Angelo Sodano said that the Pontiff has been deeply troubled by the outbreak of violence in East Timor in the aftermath of a referendum in which a clear majority of the people there declared their preference for independence from Indonesia. The recent violence has apparently been orchestrated by militia groups which- - with backing from the Indonesian army-- are seeking to prevent a break with the Jakarta government.

    Cardinal Sodano said that the Holy See "is in contact with the governments involved" in the crisis-- presumably including the governments of Indonesia and Portugal, as well as the United Nations. The cardinal said that Church leaders are seeking to find a way to stem the violence "at quickly as possible."

    On Sunday, September 5, the Pontiff had called upon the faithful to offer their prayers for the people of East Timor, saying that they have been "sorely tried" by the violence of the past week. The Pope deplored the "grave acts of intimidation" that followed the referendum, and said that a peaceful solution must respect "the will expressed in these recent days by the people of Timor."

Cardinal O'Connor recuperating after brain tumor surgery

    After a ten-day stay in Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital in New York City, doctors gave the green light for Cardinal John O'Connor Archbishop of New York City to return to his residence to recuperate. After extensive tests they discovered a tumor on the surface of the prelate's brain and performed surgery to have it removed. All signs are that it was a success and all reports are that there are no further complications and the cardinal, in great spirits, will be able to resume his duties soon. He is scheduled to resign in January next year after the Holy Father had personally asked him to stay on until then. For more, click on Cardinal O'Connor .


Returned Home After 10 Days in Hospital

    NEW YORK, SEP 5, 1999 (ZENIT).- Cardinal John O'Connor, Archbishop of New York, returned home yesterday after having a small brain tumor removed during his 10 days in the hospital.

    A statement released yesterday by New York Archdiocese spokesman, Joseph Zwilling, said: "Doctors removed a small tumor from the surface of the cardinal's brain. They determined that no other areas of the body were affected. A course of radiation therapy will begin shortly and continue over the next several weeks."

    The statement added: "Under the leadership of his personal physician, Dr. Kevin Cahill, and Dr. Thomas Faye of Memorial Sloan-Kettering, a team of doctors performed a thorough series of tests over the course of six days. Complete results were given to the cardinal on Friday."

    New York mayor Rudi Giuliani, conveyed his esteem and support of Cardinal O'Connor who he called "equally beloved as a religious leader and a New Yorker."

    "For many years, people of all faiths have looked to Cardinal O'Connor for wisdom, leadership and spiritual guidance," Giuliani said. "I join all New Yorkers in praying for him and wishing him a speedy recovery."

    Eileen White, special counsel to the cardinal, who visited him yesterday afternoon at his Madison Avenue residence behind St. Patrick's Cathedral said: "He's happy to be home ... and getting back on his feet. His spirits are great and he's comfortable." ZE99090525

Pope commemorates second anniversary of Mother Teresa's death

   As thousands processioned past the tomb of Mother Teresa in Calcutta, in Rome the Holy Father made a special point to honor this "saint of the gutters" and founder of the Missionaries of Charity during his public Papal Audience on Sunday at Castel Gondolfo. Simultaneously an anniversary Mass was being held in St. Peter's with many from her Order in attendance at St. Peter's Basilica. Speaking of the Basilica, the Holy See announced that the "Archeologist of St. Peter's" Margherita Guarducci,the person who discovered the Tomb of Saint Peter in 1965, had died at the age of 97. For more, click on Mother Teresa .


Vatican also announces death of the discoverer of Saint Peter's Tomb

    VATICAN ( -- During his Sunday public audience on September 5, Pope John Paul II paid homage to the memory of Mother Teresa of Calcutta, on the second anniversary of her death.

    After reciting the Angelus with pilgrims at his summer residence in Castel Gandalfo, the Holy Father characterized Mother Teresa as "a great patron of life, honored especially by the young." He invoked the words of the revered nun, reminding young people of their duty to "build up the peace, beginning with their families, and to defend life-- always and in every form, especially when it is most vulnerable."

    On that same day, an anniversary Mass was celebrated at St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Archbishop Giovanni Battista Re was the principal celebrant at the Mass, which was attended by the Rome-based members of the Missionaries of Charity, the religious order that Mother Teresa founded.

    Meanwhile, it was also announced that Margherita Guarducci, who identified the tomb of St. Peter under the altar of the Vatican basilica that bears his name, died in Rome on September 2 at the age of 97.

    Guarducci, widely known as "the archeologist of St. Peter's," presided over the explorations of the Vatican from 1939 to 1969. In 1965, her team confirmed the identity of St. Peter's tomb, on the basis of ancient writings inscribed on the walls of the site.

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September 7, 1999 volume 10, no. 169   DAILY CATHOLIC