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WEDNESDAY             August 19, 1998             SECTION TWO              vol 9, no. 162

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Events Today in Church History

     For events throughout the centuries that are memorable in Church history today, click on TIME CAPSULES: ALL ROADS LEAD TO ROME

Historical Events in Church Annals for August 19:

WORLDWIDE NEWS & VIEWS with a Catholic slant

provided by Catholic World News Service



      WARSAW ( - The Polish government will take over a plot of land near the former Nazi death camp of Auschwitz used in recent weeks to plant dozens of crosses which have angered Jews, Prime Minister Jerzy Buzek announced on Tuesday.

      Buzek said it would annul the lease held on the land by groups linked to those who have planted the crosses in memory of Poles killed by the Nazis. Jewish groups have protested because they say the presence of any religious symbol desecrates the burial place of more than a million Jews killed there. Buzek said the taking of the land will "make further actions possible" without saying whether the government plans to remove the crosses already there.

      The groups planting the crosses said they will defend the markers which memorialize the execution of Poles during World War II as well as a larger cross already in place which marks the place where Pope John Paul II prayed during a visit to the death camp in 1979.


      JERUSALEM ( -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today told reporters that his government hopes to resolve tensions with the Holy See over the appointment of a new bishop in Galilee.

      The Israeli leader had lodged a strong protest when Bishop Boutros Mouallem was named to head a Melkite-rite diocese in northern Israel. He insisted that Bishop Mouallem-- who is currently serving in Brazil-- is sympathetic toward the Palestinian cause.

      The Vatican quickly rejected the protest, saying that the Holy See would not be influenced by the government's demands, and emphasizing the church-state agreement in which Israel promised not to interfere in pastoral appointments.

      Sources in Israel suggested that the government might not allow Bishop Mouallem to enter the country. But today's statement by Prime Minister Netanyahu suggested that negotiations between the Israeli government and the Holy See could soon resolve the issue.


      ROCHESTER, New York ( - A priest of the Diocese of Rochester told his parish on Sunday that the Vatican had ordered he be removed as pastor for his "liberal" views.

      Father James Callan, 50, of Corpus Christi Parish announced at the parish's weekend Masses that the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had ordered Bishop Matthew Clark to reassign Father Callan for allowing women dressed in priestly garb to act as deacons during Masses, for actively distributing Holy Communion to non-Catholic Christians, and for engaging in ministry to homosexuals that did not adhere to the Church's teachings. Bishop Clark was not available for comment on the statement until late Monday, according to a diocesan spokesman.

      "I am being reassigned to another church so this church can be brought more in line with what the Vatican would like," Father Callan said. "But these are three issues that are at the heart of this church. These are not my issues, they are our issues, and I am not ashamed."

      Michael Macaluso of Citizens for a Decent Community said he was pleased by the removal since his group had complained to the bishop and the Vatican several times about Father Callan's excesses. "I just feel sorry we have to have a priest who is deposed, but we have to recognize the Church has laws for the good of souls and they must be obeyed," Macaluso said.


      DETROIT ( - The Michigan chapter of the Catholic Campaign for America on Monday called on the state's voters to reject a referendum on the November ballot to legalize assisted suicide.

      The group of lay Catholics particularly exhorted Catholic politicians to reject the initiative sponsored by the pro-suicide group Merian's Friends, pointing out that they have an obligation to avoid supporting or obeying laws which violate the dignity of human life. The ballot question would overturn a law approved by the state Legislature and Gov. John Engler and set to go into effect on September 1 that would ban assisted suicide.

      Robert Mylod, chairman of the campaign, said the ballot is a unique opportunity. "We are in an exquisitely dramatic moment. All Catholic and other leaders of good will have the opportunity to speak out against this 'culture of death' initiative," he said. "Marion's Friends seek to turn health organizations into instruments of death rather than protectors of life."

      The group also criticized Geoffrey Fieger, the Democrat candidate for governor and former attorney for assisted-suicide activist Jack Kevorkian, for anti-Catholic rhetoric and for making assisted suicide a cornerstone of his platform.

For more headlines and articles, we suggest you go to the Catholic World News site. CWN is not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provides this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.


"The man who remains stiff-necked and hates rebuke will be crushed suddenly beyond cure."

Proverbs 29: 1

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August 19, 1998 volume 9, no. 162   DAILY CATHOLIC