from issue no.02 - 2007


Kissinger, the Thirty Years War and the international crisis

Henry Kissinger

Henry Kissinger

On 25 February an article appeared in La Stampa written by Henry Kissinger in which the American statesman speaks of his hope that the Iraqi issue be dealt within the ambit of an international conference which the permanent members of the UN Security Council, the States that border on Iraq and some «key Islamic countries», such as India, Malaysia, Pakistan would attend. The conference, explained the former American Secretary of State, «could also become the context for bilateral discussions with Iran and Syria». The article concludes as follows: «America cannot allow itself the luxury of deciding its own actions based only on internal considerations. After the Thirty Years War, when the continent was prostrate and exhausted, the European nations organized an international conference to define the rules of the post-war period. Today the world has a similar opportunity».

Vladimir Putin with Benedict XVI

Vladimir Putin with Benedict XVI

Putin, the Pope and extremists

The first meeting of the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, with Benedict XVI took place on 14 March, in the Vatican, on the eve of the Italy-Russia bilateral summit in Bari. The discussion, according to the official press release issued by the Vatican, was conducted in a “positive climate”. Among the several topics touched on, «relations between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church» and various «international issues», among which the «serious threats» coming from «extremism».

The two cardinals of Milan pilgrims in the Holy Land

«When I went to parishes in Milan, I always found people who complained of things lacking, of the fact that there are no young people. And I told them to thank God for the benefits He has granted us, not for those we lack. I said that the faith, in such a secularized society, is already a miracle. It is necessary to start from the fine things we have and amplify them. A list of the things lacking is endless. And pastoral projects that begin from the list of things lacking are destined to bring frustrations and not hope». Thus Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini in an interview given to la Repubblica, on 16 March. At the time the Archbishop Emeritus of Milan had been joined by a group of pilgrims from the diocese, led by Cardinal Archbishop Dionigi Tettamanzi, who were visiting the Holy Land, as one reads on the diocesan website, «first of all for the love of the Lord Jesus and the desire to pray for our Church»; the pilgrimage was also the occasion to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of Tettamanzi’s priestly ordination and Martini’s eightieth birthday on 15 February. In the ambit of the pilgrimage, there was also the celebration of solemn vespers in the Basilica of Gethsemane, followed by the meditations of the two cardinals. This is the summary of Tettamanzi’s speech reported by Corriere della Sera of 17 March: «As when [the disciples] ask among themselves who is the greatest: “The kings of the nations govern” but “Jesus says to His own: ‘But for you it should not be so’. And invites them to make themselves small. To serve”. So: “The Church and our communities continuously run the danger of wanting to put themselves on a par with human powers. In the Church there is always the danger of considering roles as privileges, of making one’s power felt”».

Sacred College
Martini’s eightieth birthday. Castrillón Hoyos protodeacon

On 15 February Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, a Jesuit, archbishop of Milan from 1980 to 2002, was eighty years old. On that date therefore the Sacred College was made up of 184 cardinals, of whom 109 electors.
On 31 March the Spanish Cardinal Eduardo Martínez Somalo, chamberlain of the Holy Roman Church was eighty years old.
On 23 February then, in the course of the ordinary public consistory held in the Vatican to vote on some causes of canonization, the Pope confirmed as protodeacon of the Holy Roman Church Columbian Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, President of the Pontifical Commission «Ecclesia Dei», who takes the place of Chilean Cardinal Jorge Arturo Medina Estévez, retired to his native Chile on his eightieth birthday.

Coccopalmerio President of the Council for legal documents

On 15 February 69 year-old Bishop Francesco Coccopalmerio, of the Ambrosian clergy, was nominated president of the Papal Council for legal documents. He takes the place of Cardinal Julián Herranz Casado, 77 years old at the end of March, of the Opus Dei clergy. Coccopalmerio, a priest since 1962, canon lawyer, was auxiliary bishop of Milan from 1993.
Also on 15 February the Secretary of the same Papal Council, 72 year-old Bishop Bruno Bertagna, was nominated vice-president; and 56 year-old Monsignor Juan Ignacio Arrieta Ochoa de Chinchetru, of the Opus Dei clergy, originally from the Spanish Basque Region, was nominated new Secretary.
On the 15 March then Csaba Ternyák, a Hungarian, Secretary of the Congregation for the Clergy since 1997, was nominated Archbishop of Eger, in his native land. Before being called to serve in the Holy See, 54 year-old Ternyák was Secretary of the Hungarian Episcopal Conference from 1992 to 1997.
On 15 March the new undersecretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship was nominated. He is the 59 year-old Englishman Anthony Ward, a Marist, till now office head of the same department.

New archbishops to Warsaw and São Paulo

On 3 March 57 year-old Kazimierz Nycz, was nominated new archbishop of Warsaw. From 2004 he was bishop of Koszalin-Kolobrzeg, and previously, from 1988, he was auxiliary to the Cardinal of Cracow Franciszek Macharski.
On 21 March 58 year-old Odilo Pedro Scherer, Secretary of the Brazilian Episcopal Conference, was nominated archbishop of São Paulo. He was official of the Congregation for the Bishops from 1994 to 2001, the year in which he was nominated auxiliary bishop of the archdiocese of São Paulo.

New bishops in Mazara, Macerata, Iglesias and Cassano

On 22 February the 60 year-old Sicialian, Domenico Mogavero, was nominated bishop of Mazara del Vallo. From 2001 he was undersecretary of the Italian Episcopal Conference.
Also on 22 February 49 year-old Claudio Giuliodori, from the Marche, was nominated bishop of Macerata-Tolentino-Recanati-Cingoli-Treia. From 1998 he was Director of the National Office for Social Communications of the IEC.
On 8 March 60 year-old Giovanni Paolo Zedda, of the diocese of Ales-Terralba clergy, was nominated bishop of Iglesias, in Sardinia. He was external vicar and parish priest of Santa Chiara in Saint Gavino Monreale.
On 10 March Father Vincenzo Bertolone, a Sicilian, of the Congregation of the Servants of the Poor, was nominated bishop of Cassano all’Jonio, in Calabria. 59 year-old Bertolone, was undersecretary of the Congregation for the Religious from 2003.

Pierre, French nuncio to Mexico

On 22 March French Archbishop Christophe Pierre, papal representative in Uganda from 1999, was nominated apostolic nuncio to Mexico. The 61 year-old Pierre entered the Vatican diplomatic corps in 1977, served in the papal representations of New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Cuba, Brazil and in the UN Office in Geneva. In 1995 he was nominated archbishop and nuncio to Haiti.

New ambassador of Peru to the Holy See

On 16 March the Pope accepted the credentials of the new ambassador of Peru to the Holy See. He is 65 year-old Alfonso Rivero Monsalve, career diplomat, former representative of Lima in Brazil and in the United States.

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