DAILY CATHOLIC     TUESDAY     September 22, 1998     vol. 9, no. 185

from a CATHOLIC perspective

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          VATICAN (CWNews.com) -- The annual miracle of St. Januarius, the patron saint of Naples, was repeated on September 19, in the presence of a large crowd and a substantial media presence.

          The liquefaction of the saint's blood-- an inexplicable phenomenon which has occurred yearly over the centuries-- was taken by some observers as a testimony to the innocence of current archbishop of Naples, Cardinal Michele Giordano, who has become the center of a church-state conflict after local law-enforcement authorities searched his offices in connection with a probe of organized crime.

          The liquefaction of the blood, occurring on the feast of St. Januarius, had been viewed by some observers as a sort of test. When Cardinal Giordano held the vial in which the coagulated blood is preserved, and a witness proclaimed that it had again become liquid, the large audience in the Naples cathedral burst into applause before venerating the relic.

          On Monday, September 21, the Vatican revealed that Cardinal Giordano has launched an inquiry into the financial affairs of his archdiocesan curia.

          A formal inquiry, under the terms of the Code of Canon Law, can be undertaken when the bishop has convincing evidence that some offense has been committed. The inquiry in Naples, following close on the heels of a civil investigation which resulted in a search of archdiocesan offices, supports the suspicions that some archdiocesan officials may have been involved in criminal affairs.

          Cardinal Giordano himself-- long known as an public opponent of organized crime-- has staunchly maintained his own innocence of all wrongdoing. And in Rome, Cardinal Camillo Ruini, the head of the Italian bishops' conference, denounced the "pressure campaign" against Cardinal Giordano, insisting that the Naples prelate was a victim rather than the perpetrator of a crime.

Articles provided through Catholic World News Service.
CWN is not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provides this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

September 22, 1998       volume 9, no. 185


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