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TUESDAY      October 13, 1998      SECTION TWO       vol 9, no. 200

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      Today's prayer in honor of the 81st anniversary of the final apparition at Fatima is the traditional Fatima Prayer said after every decade of the Rosary:

     O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to Heaven, especially those who are in most need of Thy Mercy.

Events Today in Church History

     Today we commemorate the 81st anniversary of the final apparition at Fatima and the famous "Miracle of the Sun."For other events throughout the centuries that are memorable in Church history today, click on MILLENNIUM MILESTONES AND MEMORIES

Historical Events in Church Annals for October 13:

with a Catholic slant

provided by Catholic World News Service



      VATICAN ( -- As he pronounced the canonization of Edith Stein, Pope John Paul II prayed "that her witness will serve to reinforce the bridge of understanding between Jews and Christians." He also asked "all men and women of good will" to join him in the prayer that there could "never again" be an atrocity like the Holocaust.

      Edith Stein, who died at Auschwitz on August 9, 1942, had been beatified by Pope John Paul in May 1987. Last year a Vatican investigation resulted in the official approval of a miracle attributed to her intercession: the inexplicable healing of a young American girl who had been accidentally poisoned.

      Edith Stein was born into a Jewish family, and converted to Catholicism after establishing herself as a formidable young philosopher. She entered the Carmelite order, taking the name Sister Theresa Benedicta of the Holy Cross. She was living in Holland when the bishops of that country condemned Nazi racial policies, and in retaliation the Nazi government rounded up Jewish-born Catholics and took them into the extermination camps.

      Pope John Paul said that the feast of St. Theresa Benedicta- Edith Stein should be an occasion for Catholics to recall the Holocaust, "that terrible plan to eliminate a people-- a plan which cost the lives of millions of our Jewish brothers and sisters." Toward that end, the Holy Father said:

      "For the love of God and of man, once again, profoundly moved, I raise my voice to cry, 'Never again let there be such a criminal initiative, for any ethnic group, any people, any race, anywhere in the world!"

      The Pope also dwelt at length on the philosophical work of Edith Stein, emphasizing her contributions to the proper understanding of human reason. Cautioning against the assumption that "truth is the opinion held by the greatest number of people," he said that "truth and love require one another." Edith Stein, he said, had taught: "Do not accept anything as truth if it lacks love; and do not accept as love anything which lacks truth."

      Despite the celebration, some Jewish groups protested the act as slap in their face and a reversal in Jewish-Catholic relations.

      The Holy Father called St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, nee Edith Stein, "an eminent daughter of Israel and a faithful daughter of the Church." The saint was killed in the Nazi death camp Auschwitz after Jewish converts to Christianity were rounded up in the Netherlands. "In the martyr, Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, so many differences meet and are resolved in peace," said the Pope.

      Ephraim Zuroff of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Jerusalem criticized the canonization. "[Stein] could in no way symbolize the Jewish martyrs of the Holocaust because she chose to leave Judaism," he said. The canonization "sends the worst possible message to Catholics all over the world -- that is, that the Jews that the Catholic Church likes the best are those who have left Judaism."


      VATICAN ( -- The Vatican today confirmed that Pope John Paul's new encyclical, Fides et Ratio, will be formally promulgated on Thursday, October 15-- the feast of St. Teresa of Avila, and the eve of the 20th anniversary of the Holy Father's election.

      The encyclical, which has already been translated from Latin into seven languages (English, Italian, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, and Polish), will be presented to the press on that day by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. He will be joined in that presentation by Archbishop Josef Miroslaw Zycinski of Lublin and Bishop Rino Fisichella, a Rome auxiliary, and by Father Georges Cottier, the theological of the papal household.


      MANASSAS, Virginia ( - The semi-comatose man at the center of a legal fight over his wife's decision to have his feeding tubes removed died on Friday, eight days after a court ordered those tubes removed.

      Hugh Finn, 44, was in a semi-comatose state since an auto accident in 1995, and his wife Michele argued that he had not wanted to live if he ever ended up in such circumstances. After doctors diagnosed Finn as being in a "persistent vegetative state," the court ordered the hospital to remove the tubes, despite pleas from Finn's family and an intervention on their behalf by Virginia Gov. James Gilmore.

      Finn's family claimed that he sometimes answered questions verbally, and he could blink his eyes to answer them. When told he would no longer be able to receive Holy Communion when the feeding stopped, he reportedly cried. A final attempt to intervene on Finn's behalf was made on Thursday by Virginia Delegate Robert Marshall, but a federal judge ruled he had no legal standing in the case.


      LOS ANGELES ( - A county coroner's office agreed on Friday to release the remains of 54 aborted children found in an empty field to pro-life groups for a Christian burial, but a civil liberties group said that may violate the separation of church and state.

      San Bernadino County Coroner Brian McCormick released the bodies to the pro-lifers who named each child, provided a casket, and planned to hold memorial services over the weekend at several area churches. The bodies were found in cardboard boxes in a field last year. An investigation traced them back to a now-closed Los Angeles abortion clinic and a truck driver for the clinic was sentenced to 71 days in jail for the dumping.

      The pro-life groups asked the coroner's office to release the bodies to them at the conclusion of the investigation, but the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California protested. "It is more than just the appearance of the state sanctioning a particular religious belief," said associate director Elizabeth Schroeder. "Under California law there is only one way to dispose of this material ... that would be by incineration."

      Schroeder cited a 1994 California appeals court decision that ruled the Los Angeles County district attorney's office violated the separation of church and state when it proposed to bury 16,500 aborted children in religious ceremonies.

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.

September 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message

   Dear children! Today, I call you to become my witnesses by living the faith of your fathers. Little children, you seek signs and messages and do not see that, with every morning sunrise, God calls you to convert and to return to the way of truth and salvation. You speak much, little children, but you work little on your conversion. That is why, convert and start to live my messages, not with your words but with your life. In this way, little children, you will have the strength to decide for the true conversion of the heart. Thank you for having responded to my call

For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE


"Man's steps are from the Lord; how, then, can a man understand His way?"

Proverbs 20: 24

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October 13, 1998 volume 9, no. 200   DAILY CATHOLIC