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THURSDAY      August 12, 1999      SECTION TWO       vol 10, no. 151

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


      Today is the Nineteenth Thursday in Ordinary Time while tomorrow is the Nineteenth Friday in Ordinary Time as well as the Feast of the martyred Pope Saint Pontian and Saint Hippolytus, priest. For the readings, liturgies, meditations and vignettes for these saints, click on DAILY LITURGY.

Thursday, August 12, 1999

Friday, August 13, 1999



      In honor of Saturday's Feast of the modern martyred Franciscan priest Saint Maximilian Kolbe, we present the Opening Prayer for Saturday's Mass venerating him:

Gracious God, You filled Your priest and martyr, St. Maximilian Kolbe, with zeal for souls and love for his neighbor. Through the prayers of this devoted servant of Mary Immaculate, grant that in our efforts to serve others for Your glory, we too may become like Christ Your Son, Who loved His own in the world even to the end.

"Beware the snares of the evil one who would strip you of the magnificence of the Apostles' Creed and the Nicene Creed and the beautiful hymns and prayers of praise in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. When you pray these holy prayers all the hosts of Heaven join in and like incense it rises before the Throne of God."

      Those words from the Sacred Heart of Jesus were imparted on the Solemnity of Trinity Sunday on June 11, 1995 to the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart. In this third from the final Message, Our Lord reminds us to safeguard the treasures we have been given in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church which is so vital in the role of helping bring about the Triumph of Mary's Immaculate Heart and ushering in the glorious Reign of the Sacred Heart which Jesus has promised. He prefaces these words with His Message two days earlier on the Feast of Saint Ephrem by asking us to suppress sin by calling on His benevolent Mercy. He is knocking and waiting for us to answer. For Messages #629 and #630, click on "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..."

Messages 629 and 630

Message Six-Hundred-twenty-nine, June 9, 1995

(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Sacred Heart of Jesus)
(Feast of St. Ephrem)

Message Six-Hundred-thirty, June 11, 1995

(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Sacred Heart of Jesus)

with a Catholic slant

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



200 Participants from Around the World Expected

      VATICAN CITY, AUG 10 (ZENIT).- The Holy See is preparing a meeting of the principal religions of the world, which will be held in the Vatican and Assisi from October 23-28. In addition to being a step forward in dialogue among religious confessions, it will also be a stage in the preparations for the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000.

      There will be 200 participants representing Christianity, as well as leaders of various animist and Asian religions. The sessions will take place in the Vatican and will be followed by a pilgrimage to Assisi. On the last day, a concluding statement will be read in John Paul II's presence. The event will close with festivities for the participants in St. Peter's Square.

Dialogue and Identity

    Speaking to Vatican Radio, Bishop Michael Fitzgerald, secretary of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue, the Vatican entity that is organizing the event, said that some Catholics wonder how it is possible to dialogue with other religions without losing their Christian identity. Dialogue "is a relatively new phenomenon in the Church -- a development of awareness the Church experienced during Vatican Council II -- just 30 years ago. But it is also an understanding of Christ's role, which is fundamental, and for the whole of humanity. He is not just for Christians. John Paul II has referred to this Council teaching: when the Son of God became man, he entered into relationship with every member of humanity, of all times and throughout the world. Therefore, in a certain sense, there is not a single human person who is outside of Christ. With such faith in Christ, who is Lord and Savior of all, we want to meet with people who do not believe in Christ, but who, in a mysterious way, are already joined to him," Bishop Fitzgerald said.

A Common Adventure

    The Bishop continued, "In fact, we can also see the action of the Spirit of God in the heart of people. We meet people who are good, honest, cooperative and we also see very good elements in the religious traditions -- we can attribute all this to God. We are not coming to the dialogue thinking that we have it all and the others have nothing. Together we shall discover our riches reciprocally. In a certain sense, it is an adventure we are entering together."

Movements' Contributions

    Teresa Goncalves, an official of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue, spoke about the contribution being made to the religious dialogue by the movements and new ecclesial communities, born both before and after Vatican Council II. "They have taken on the commitment to ecumenism and dialogue with the Council's religions."

    Specifically, the Vatican representative mentioned the work, "Men and religions," of the St. Egidio Community that has been carried out since the meeting of religious leaders, called by John Paul II In 1986 in Assisi. Also, the work of the Focolares, "who through the spirituality of dialogue have cemented profound fraternity with persons of other religions," Goncalves explained.

    Goncalves believes "that the lay movements also make a specific contribution because of their integration in society -- in the realms of economics, politics, etc., precisely because of their lay character."

    Bishop Fitzgerald said that Catholic men and women religious will also take part in the meeting, as well as leaders of the movements and new communities. "All the Catholic Church's categories will participate," he explained. "We want to build on the foundations of dialogue, which is already taking place in many areas."

Artistic Dimension

    In addition, the meeting will have an artistic dimension, "for which today's world has special sensitivity," Teresa Goncalves added. "Because of this, we have thought of organizing a concert in the Paul VI Audience Hall, and have entrusted it to 'Gen Rosso,' an international Christian group -- although there will also be groups from other religions, specifically Japan, India, two Moroccan Moslem singers and the Jewish Choir of Rome. In this way, we hope to entrust the message of dialogue among the religions to the power of artistic communication." ZE990810004


      BELGRADE, AUG 10 (ZENIT).- Yesterday the Serbian Orthodox Church was successful in bringing together the two principal opposition leaders for the first time since 1997. For the past month and a half, the two leaders have been appealing independently for Yugoslavian president Slobodan Milosevic's resignation. Vuk Draskovic, leader of the Serbian Renewal Movement (SPO), met Zoran Djindjic at the headquarters of the Belgrade Orthodox Patriarchy. Djindjic is the leader of the Alliance for Change coalition. There is personal animosity between Djindjic and Draskovic that was exacerbated in 1997 when the coalition in which they were both involved disintegrated because of a power struggle in Serbian municipalities.

    The meeting at the Patriarchy was attended by the SPO, the Alliance for Change, other opposition parties, Patriarch Pavle and some Serbian economists of the G-17 independent group, which last week proposed a Stability Pact for Serbia that provides for the formation of a transition government of experts.

    During the meeting, all the parties agreed to support the formation of a transition government and confirmed their attendance at a mass meeting, to be held on August 19 in Belgrade, to oppose Milosevic and call for reforms. ZE99081011


    OSAKA ( - Japanese archeologists announced on Wednesday that they had found the oldest rosary beads ever discovered in the country in a wooden coffin unearthed last year.

    The rosary found at Takatsuki Castle in Osaka predates the anti-Christian edicts issued by warlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi (1537-1598) in 1587. The castle was the seat of Takayama Ukon (around 1552-1615), a Christian daimyo, or lord, in the late 16th century. The archeologists said the beads will be of assistance in studying the history of Christian missionary work in Japan, which began with the arrival of St. Francis Xavier in 1549.

    All other rosaries previously uncovered were believed to date from the era of "Kakure Kirishitan" -- Christians who practiced the outlawed faith in secret -- during the Edo period (1603-1868), the researchers said.

    Ukon was Japan's best-known Christian daimyo. Noted for his deeply held Christian faith, Ukon was baptized at age 12. Known by his Christian name Dom Justo, he propagated his faith among local residents after becoming lord of Takatsuki, opening his doors to missionaries and building 20 churches in his domain. Ukon was banished in 1614 with 147 other Christian nobles from Japan, dying the following year in Manila, the Philippines.


      ROME ( - The Italian government will gather Michelangelo's three complete "Pieta" sculptures for the Jubilee Year 2000, including the most famous version in St. Peter's Basilica, according to report in Il Messaggero newspaper.

    The Vatican's Pieta, depicting the Virgin holding the body of Christ after his crucifixion, was sculpted by Michelangelo for the Jubilee Year 1500 and is now the most famous of his three works. Another Pieta is kept at the Castello Sforzesco Museum in Milan. The third, known as the "Pieta' di Palestrina" -- taking its name from the town near Rome from which it came -- is kept at the "Galleria dell'Accademia" in Florence. A fourth, unfinished Pieta also exists in Florence.

    The exhibition of the three "Pietas", to take place at the Quirinal Palace -- a once residence to the popes and now to Italian presidents -- would start soon after the opening of the Holy Door, possibly on January 2, and continue until the Jubilee of Artists, February 18.

For more headlines and articles, we suggest you go to the Catholic World News site at the CWN home page and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and Daily Dispatches, Dossiers and Features from ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

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August 12, 1999 volume 10, no. 151   DAILY CATHOLIC