Columns
from issue no.08 - 2007


LETTERS FROM THE CONVENTS


POOR CLARES OF THE CONVENT OF THE BLESSED TRINITY
Ozanam Village, Aritao, The Philippines

The saints rejoiced in the goodness of God

Ozanam Village, 30 March 2007

Dear Mr. Andreotti, Peace and every Blessing!
Who would not feel elated for having received five copies of 30Days in the Church and in the World? We are extremely happy and grateful that you have thought of us. You’ll never know how much your kindness meant.
30Days magazine is rich with information and quite embracing. Anyone who would read it would not only be informed but formed as well. It is interesting to know what is happening around us and in other parts of the world. In this fast changing world we are reminded by our Holy Mother St. Clare who was joined unchangingly to her Noble Spouse, and found constant joy in spiritual things and so with St. Francis and his followers. They rejoiced in the goodnes and kindness of God revealed in creation and above all in the salvation wrought by His Incarnate Son.
As we approach to celebrate the Paschal experience of Our Lord and our own, may we be reminded by the Risen Savior to make us Easter people yearning to build His Kingdom of Peace, Truth, Love and Justice.
Again, thank you very much! With this letter we wish to assure you of our humble prayer for you and for all those who received and may receive the copy of 30Days magazine – that they may continue to touch hearts of others and influence their lives.
«Let us praise God by our life» (St. Clare)
God bless!

Sr. Claire of Our Lady of Grace, OSC


CARMELITES OF THE HOLY MARY OF CARMEL CONVENT
Florence, Italy

The contents of 30Giorni are a great service for all

Florence, 13 April 2007

Dear Senator Andreotti,
Peace and joy, and above all deep participation in the great divine love of the Risen Christ!
It has been nearly a year that we receive your meaningful and interesting magazine 30Giorni free of charge. We thank you sincerely for this thoughtful and generous gesture.
We appreciate your apostolate a lot, because communication, through the written word that lasts, is so important for the world today. The contents of life and Christian values, information, trustworthy, pertinent and penetrating, with a wide contemporary and historical vision, are a great service for all.
May God bless you, Senator Andreotti, your work and that of all your collaborators, and grant great “success” to the circulation of this magazine. We assure you our prayers and ask your prayers for us.
United in the joy of the risen Christ,
Sincerely,

the Carmelite nuns of Morocco,
Sister Rosemary OCDM for the Mother Prioress


CAPUCHIN POOR CLARES OF THE CONVENT OF SANTÍSIMO SACRAMENTO Y INMACULADA CONCEPCIÓN
Cortazar, Mexico

The meditation on Christmas pleased us greatly

Cortazar, 23 May 2007

Dear Mr. Giulio Andreotti,
May God the All Good, the Supreme Good, the Total Good, continue to be the inspiration of your goodness.
The purpose of this letter is to thank you for your kindness and generosity in sending us the magazine 30Días en la Iglesia y en el mundo free of charge. In the number of the month of April we also received the complimentary copy of the booklet Quien reza se salva, the reason for which we express our sincere thanks to you and all of your collaborators who make possible the realization of this means of information which is so effective, through which we are informed of the events of greater importance in the Church and social life. The knowledge makes us sensitive to human realities and stimulates us to turn to the Lord in prayer.
It is a satisfaction to see how the Sisters are interested in the content of the magazine and hear in conversations what they learn anew of our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI and how they apply it to their experience of life.
The meditations are very relevant, the one on Christmas pleased us greatly, and the articles on ecumenism seem quite interesting; what we have read on the war is shocking but is a stimulus to our engagement to pray for peace.
Thanks, Mr. Andreotti, because the magazine is for us as well as an instrument of information also an instrument of formation in the human and Christian values that are necessary to cultivate every day.
We ask God, who is love and mercy, to reward your generosity and we remember you in our prayer.
With care,

sister Nazaret Ramírez Parra OSC, Abbess


DOMINICANS OF THE CONVENT OF BLAGNAC
Blagnac, France

We would want to make the “red booklet” known

Blagnac, 15 June 2007

Mr. Director,
Please excuse me for having written so late in order to thank you for the magazine that you have been sending to us for some months. I am deeply grateful to you. I would like to have found your so lovely magazine in a bookshop, but it is not possible.
If you would have the great goodness of sending me two copies of the number dedicated to the birthday of our beloved Pope Benedict XVI...
I send you, for this purpose, a small postal money order, hoping you can cash it in Rome.
We pray for your apostolate, and you, and I allow myself to ask for your prayers for our small community that is currently very exhausted. After many deaths, we remain in few, very old, and some ill! So much so that, before the end of the summer, we will have to join with another Dominican community.
Wherever we may be... we will pray for you, for your lovely magazine... thanking you again from the bottom of the heart.

sister Marie Agnès du Christ OP

P.S. I hope that you can send me two copies of 30Jours and copies of the “red booklet” (Qui prie sauve son âme) in order to make it known...


BENEDICTINES OF THE HOUSE OF SAINT BENOÎT OF KIGUFI
Gisenyi, Rwanda, Africa

Return to the Catechism

Kigufi, 18 June 2007

Mr. Director,
We have just received the magazine 30Jours for the fifth time.
We want to express all our appreciation to you for having thought of us.
We are edified by the articles of the magazine that deal thoroughly with every life, both Christian and religious, and, even more, with our life as Benedictine nuns in our mission of praying for the world.
We have read the booklet Qui prie sauve son âme. And we thank you for having made us return to the Catechism that is the source and indeed the foundation of our Christian life.
May the Lord bless you and your work.
We thank you assuring you of our prayers for your intentions.

Sister Geneviève Mukamana,
Head, and all the Community


POOR CLARES OF THE PERPETUAL ADORATION
Portsmouth, Ohio, United States

We have a great love for Pope Benedict XVI

Portsmouth, 19 June 2007

Dear 30Giorni,
Thank you so much for the recent issue exclusively on our beloved Holy Father, “Ad multos annos”. We have a great love for Pope Benedict XVI, and we can never hear enough of him. We are grateful for the complementary issues that we receive from you, and we pray that the good Lord will continue to bless your work.
With our prayer and thanksgiving,

mother Dolores Marie, PCPA






Spiritual reading/10


We propose the reading of Canons 5 and 6 of the Council of Carthage of 418, the context of which – the Pelagian controversy – we spoke of in the previous number of 30Days (n. 6/7 June/July 2007, p. 7).
Of the Pelagians Augustine says that they are «enemies of the grace of God, in the sense that they believe that man can obey all the divine commandments without it» (De haeresibus 88, 2).
When Pelagius was reproached for thus failing to recognize any helping role to the grace of God – «If it were true that man can obey all the divine commandments without it, why would the Lord have said: “Without me you can do nothing”?» (ibidem) – seemed to give way, but not to the point of «putting the grace of God before free will, but submitting it by means of a lying ruse [infideli calliditate], saying that it is given to men so that what is commanded them to do with free will, they can more easily accomplish with grace. By saying “they can more easily”, he gave it to be understood that, without grace, men, although with greater difficultly, can nevertheless put the commandments of God into practice» (ibidem).
By an even more deceitful ruse, today’s Pelagians («Pelagius today has many more followers than appears at first sight», Cardinal Ratzinger said to the Rimini Meeting of 1990) claim, or rather “they allow it to be understoood” that grace is an “a priori” already given from the start. It is Goulven Madec, a great interpreter of Augustine, who has parallelled this conception to what is central in Pelagianism. In fact, for Augustine, grace is a gift that man can «await [...], a gift that man does not have at his disposal as a good that would in any case have been given to him already from the start» (G. Madec, La patria e la via, [The native land and the way], p. 234). The modern Pelagians also do not respect the historical happening of grace (and therefore neither do they respect the reason and freedom of man), but denature the concept of grace into a datum in which, willing or unwilling, man already finds himself.
Only if grace is a free gift, does prayer, in its aspect of gratitude and request (supplex confessio), mark the daily Christian life. Otherwise sooner or later it becomes superfluous: the inevitable and most obvious consequence of a Pelagian or Neopelagian attitude. But salvation is at stake: “Who prays is saved”.
With grace, freely recognized and asked for, what is impossible for man becomes possible. As Jesus said fixing his eyes on his disciples: «With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible» (Mt 19, 26). With grace, the yoke of Jesus becomes sweet and light (cf. Mt 11, 30). What is impossible for naked and wounded man, becomes light and sweet, easy (Saint Augustine says and with him many saints) for the freedom of the man healed and carried by the Jesus attraction.
One grasps, therefore, the relevance and the stake implied in the Canons of an ancient African Council approved by the Apostolic See of Rome.


The dogmas of the Council of Carthage

The Christian life without the attraction of grace is not difficult, it is impossible

Canon 5. Item placuit, ut quicumque dixerit, ideo nobis gratiam iustificationis dari, ut, quod facere per liberum iubemur arbitrium, facilius possimus implere per gratiam, tamquam et si gratia non daretur, non quidem facile, sed tamen possimus etiam sine illa implere divina mandata, anathema sit. De fructibus enim mandatorum Dominus loquebatur, ubi non ait: «Sine me difficilius potestis facere», sed ait: «Sine me nihil potestis facere» [Jn 15, 5].

Can. 5. It has likewise been decided [by the bishops] that whoever says that the grace of justification is given to us for this reason: that what we are ordered to do through free will, we may be able to accomplish more easily through grace, just as if, even if grace were not given, we could nevertheless fulfill the divine commands without it, though not indeed easily, let him be anathema. For concerning the fruits of His commands the Lord spoke not when He said: ‘Without me you can accomplish with greater difficulty,’ but when He said: «Without me you can do nothing» [Jn 15, 5].

Canon 6. Item placuit, quod ait sanctus Ioannes Apostolus: «Si dixerimus, quia peccatum non habemus, nos ipsos seducimus, et veritas in nobis non est» [1Jn 1, 8]: quisquis sic accipiendum putaverit, ut dicat propter humilitatem oportere dici, nos habere peccatum, non quia vere ita est, anathema sit. Sequitur enim Apostolus et adiungit: «Si autem confessi fuerimus peccata nostra, fidelis est et iustus, qui remittat nobis peccata et mundet nos ab omni iniquitate» [1Jn 1, 9]. Ubi satis apparet, hoc non tantum humiliter, sed etiam veraciter dici. Poterat enim Apostolus dicere: «Si dixerimus: non habemus peccatum, nos ipsos extollimus, et humilitas in nobis non est». Sed cum ait: «Nos ipsos decipimus, et veritas in nobis non est»: satis ostendit eum, qui se dixerit non habere peccatum, non verum loqui, sed falsum.

Can. 6. It has likewise been decided [by the bishops] that what St. John the Apostle says: «If we say, that we have not sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us» [1Jn 1, 8], whoever thinks that this ought to be interpreted thus: that he asserts that this ought to be said on account of humility, namely, that we have sin, and not because it is truly so, let him be anathema. For the Apostle continues and adds: If however we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, who remits our sins and cleanses us from all iniquity» [1Jn 1, 9], wherein it is quite clear, that this is said not only humbly but truly. For the Apostle could have said: ‘If we say: we have not sin, we extol ourselves, and humility is not in us’. But when he says: «We deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us», he shows clearly that he who said he had not sin, spoke not the truth but a falsehood.






LETTERS FROM THE MISSIONS


Father Pietro Parcelli, Salvador, Brazil

Father Pietro Parcelli, Salvador, Brazil

MISSIONARIES OF THE CONSOLED
Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

Our project directed toward poor families

Salvador, May 2007

Dear Mr. Giulio Andreotti,
I have here on the table the last number of the review 30Giorni which I receive punctually. It is so beautiful to receive news and information from Italy.
And this number is nearly all dedicated to the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to Brazil. I thank you and express to you the gratitude of those who work with me in the “Projeto famílias de Novos Alagados”, in the city of Salvador.
I send you some news on our project: it is directed toward the families that live in extreme poverty and began in 1999 when very many families still lived in the stilt houses.
With the collaboration of the Foreign Ministry of Italy and the local government many stilt houses have disappeared. The misery, the chronic unemployment of the young people, the traffic... continue...
The most beautiful novelty of these last months with regard to the project is the constant visit of volunteer entertainers to the families. In groups of four, three times a week.
It is a beautiful testimony of mothers who visit other mothers. It is a genuinely missionary activity of raising the quality of the ambience.
The mothers of the “Kilombo do Kioiô” – so the center of the project is called – are currently 550.
The word ‘Kilombo’ recalls the small republics that the escaped slaves founded to live their freedom. ‘Kioiô’ is a medicinal plant used a lot in ours parts that we found in the house garden when we bought it. In the months of January and February we have had new registrations. Another hundred and fifty mothers entered the plan.
What impressed us most is that the greater number are adolescent mothers from 13 to 17 years old.
We had three groups of adolescent mothers and recently we have formed a fourth.
Among these, a group is perfecting the making of ear rings, necklaces, bracelets, etc, with the natural material of Bahia.
May the Madonna fill you and your collaborators abundantly with joy and consolations.

Father Pietro Parcelli


HERALDS COLLEGE
Chatrapur, Orissa, India

We will remember you in the Holy Eucharist

Chatrapur, 15 January 2007

Dear Director Giulio Andreotti,
Greetings and best wishes in prayer from Orissa, India. I hope that you are in good health and that all proceeds for the best. Allow me to introduce myself, since it is the first time that I write to you. I am Father Pothanamala and I am part of the Society of the Heralds of the Good News, a society of apostolic life of missionary priests of the Roman rite. Heralds College is the minor seminary of our Congregation and is situated in the province of Orissa, in northern India. At the moment I fulfill the assignment of chancellor of Heralds College, which numbers forty seminarians and four employees. The seminarians come from northern India and are very happy to be in the seminary and to become priests.
Dear Director, I am indeed happy to inform you that I have had occasion to read your monthly magazine, 30Giorni nella Chiesa e nel mondo, and I am absolutely enthusiastic about it. The articles are indeed stimulating and excellent. My compliments and appreciation go in the first place, and above all, to you in your job as Director.
Dear Director, I am certain that this periodical will be able to bring great good into the life of our staff and our seminarians; could you kindly send us a copy of it? I am truly sorry to have to tell you that we are not in a position to supply any material aid, but I assure you that we, staff and seminarians, will remember you every day in our daily prayer and in particular in the Holy Eucharist.
Thanking you, as of now, I wish you good health and divine blessings for all your activities.
With affection, esteem and greetings in prayer, I remain sincerely yours,

father Luie Pothanamala


SAINT AUGUSTINE MAJOR SEMINARY
Maroua, Cameroon

30Giorni appeals to us because of the richness of its contents

Maroua, 15 April 2007

Dear Giulio Andreotti,
We offer you our best wishes. We are two young people of the parish of Mogodé, in Cameroon, and are in the major seminary, both in the Theology course. We are Bernard Zra Deli and James Tsuda.
We have come to know your magazine through Father Andrea, of our parish. It seemed very interesting to us because of the richness of its contents and it would please us, if possible, to receive it in French.
We count on your kind understanding. Our best and most affectionate greetings, in the expectation of reading you soon through your magazine.

Bernard Zra Deli and James Tsuda


PIME MISSIONARIES
Parintins, Brazil

The magazine helps me to have a more open vision of the history that we live

Parintins, 10 May 2007

Dear Mr. Senator Giulio Andreotti,
I am Father Benito Di Pietro, a PIME missionary.
I write from Parintins, in the heart of Brazilian Amazonia, in the State of Amazonas, where the Lord assigned me in 1967.
I want to thank you for your magazine 30Giorni (which I also know in the Portuguese language), which you have sent me every month for some time now.
It is a magazine that not only offers in-depth analysis on current events, especially European, on the Church and the Middle East, but also sections of the past and recent history, often lived by you in the first person.
The magazine therefore helps me to have a more open vision of the history that we have lived and live, guided by Divine Providence.
But, if you permit, I want to recall with pleasure when, invited by the late lamented Father Tragella, you came to Gaeta in far off 1961 (11 February, precisely) in order to conduct a brilliant commemoration of the centenary of the death of Monsignor Angelo Ramazzotti, saintly founder of the Lombard Seminary for the Foreign Missions (the future PIME), in the Ariston theater. My wonder on that occasion was in ascertaining how you knew the figure of the holy Patriarch of Venice better than me who had already entered the Institute three years previously.
I remember also when you came to Manaus and I participated in the homage that the local authorities offered to you.
These memories render life more pleasant, and living the mission itself more stimulating.
Thanks again, best wishes for the work that, in spite of the years, you carry ahead with responsibility and dignity. May the Lord bless and give you the joy of always serving Italy.
And, if you permit, a dear embrace.

Father Benito Di Pietro




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