(Sir Europe - Bratislava) - Cathedral of St. Wenceslas in Olomouc, Czech republic, was awarded a special prize for the project of improved access for the people with visual disability. The award with symbolic name Bridges was granted on 15 March by the Czech National Disability Council. The activity is appreciated a lot because we are well aware of problems of the disabled, associated with their access to historical sacral buildings. Wed also like to motivate other institutions to undertake this journey, explained Vaclav Krasa, president of the Council. Awarded Catholic project consists of creation of the haptic model of the cathedral, Braille guidebooks, haptic tour around the building and special haptic exhibitions. It has been elaborated in cooperation with TyfloCenter Olomouc and with support of the Olomouc municipality. The Bridge Award was consigned for the 9th time, with aim to appreciate projects improving the status of people with handicaps and their integration in the society.
The European Advocacy Academy (EAA), a four-day conference organised by the European Dignity Watch, an NGO founded in 2010 to defend the three pillars of every society: life, the family and fundamental freedoms is to begin today in Brussels. 70 journalists, political advisors, young academics, and NGO leaders from 28 European countries will participate in the conference, which - the organisers explained - is the first part of a high-level political training program. The topics for discussion include how to influence the EU institutions, human rights language and policies, and the rise of secularism in Europe. Participants share a common vision of life and society whose core values are freedom and responsibility, justice, subsidiarity, the importance of a strong civil society based on the family and are convinced of the urgent need of understanding the European dimension of these crucial issues that are not only at the centre of policies and legislation, but also at the heart of the crisis. Hence there is a need to create a strong European network. The Brussels module will conclude with a meeting with the vice-president of the European Parliament, Lazslo Surjan, and with one of the advisors to the president of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, on the dialogue with religions and civil society. The second module, on the Council of Europe and the European Court system, will be held in Strasbourg in April.
Not sufficient to overcome the doctrinal problems which lie at the foundation of the rift between the Holy See and the Society of St. Pius X (Lefebvrians): this is the evaluation of the response of the Society to the Doctrinal Preamble, handed over to the Lefebvrians on 14 September 2011. The announcement was made this morning during a meeting in the Vatican, which lasted more than two hours, between Cardinal William Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and president of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, and Mgr. Bernard Fellay, superior general of the Society. A communiqué released today by the Holy See Press Office provides a brief summary of the events up to now: during the meeting on 14 September 2011 between Card. Levada and Mgr Fellay the latter was presented with a ‘Doctrinal Preamble, accompanied by a ‘Preliminary Note, as a fundamental basis for achieving full reconciliation with the Apostolic See. This defined certain doctrinal principles and criteria for the interpretation of Catholic doctrine, which are necessary to ensure faithfulness to the Church Magisterium and ‘sentire cum Ecclesia. (continued)
The response of the Society of St. Pius X to the aforesaid ‘Doctrinal Preamble, which arrived in January 2012 - the statement reads -, was examined by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith before being submitted to the Holy Father for his judgement. Pursuant to the decision made by Pope Benedict XVI, Bishop Fellay was, in a letter delivered today, informed of the evaluation of his response. The letter states that the position he expressed is not sufficient to overcome the doctrinal problems which lie at the foundation of the rift between the Holy See and the Society of St. Pius X. At the end of todays meeting, moved by concern to avoid an ecclesial rupture of painful and incalculable consequences - the communiqué states -, the superior general of the Society of St. Pius X was invited to clarify his position in order to be able to heal the existing rift, as is the desire of Pope Benedict XVI.
(Sir Europe - Bratislava) - Ministry of Culture of Slovak republic has published the criteria for acquisition of grants in regard to the next years celebration of the 1150th anniversary of St. Cyril and Methodius´s arrival to the region of Great Moravia. One million euro will be distributed to the selected projects in two main sections: Art - aiming to support non-commercial artistic works and activities with emphasis on life and mission of the two saints; and Immaterial cultural heritage - focusing on the support of educational and cultural activities, scientific research projects and publishing of specialized books related to significance of the Cyrilo-methodian tradition, its influence on development of contemporary society and evangelization. Deadline for submission of applications is 30 April 2012.
The archbishop of Westminster, mgr. Vincent Nichols, is one of the first Catholic leaders to pay tribute to Rowan Williams, archbishop of Canterbury, at the news of his resignation. Over the last three years - the archbishop said -, my appreciation for archbishop Rowans qualities has increasingly grown: his kindness, his sharp wit, his devotion to the search for harmony between different peoples, especially within the Christian family, his courage and his friendship. I will miss these personality traits of him, when he resigns from his post, in December. I will miss him. I thank him for the service he rendered, recalling in particular his warm welcome to Pope Benedict XVI in Lambeth Palace, a visit that was reciprocated with the same joy just last week. Now, I will be looking ahead to keep working together in the next nine months.
The Archbishop of York John Sentamu said he was saddened by the news: Our partnership in the Gospel over the past six years has been the most creative period of my ministry. It has been life-giving to have led missions together, gone on retreats and prayed together. In his company I have drunk deeply from the wells of Gods mercy and love. He is a real brother to me in Christ. The last decade has been a challenging time for the Church of England and the Anglican Communion. Thankfully, Archbishop Rowan is a remarkable and gifted leader who has strengthened the bonds of affection.
The Archbishop of Canterbury is the focus of unity for the Anglican Communion. He is president of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC), and president of the Primates Meeting. In these roles he has traveled extensively throughout the Anglican Communion, visiting provinces and parishes: his mission is to support and encourage the witness of the Church in very diverse contexts. As primus inter pares among the bishops, he has a special concern for those in Episcopal ministry. Following the announcement of his resignation, the General Secretary of the Anglican Communion Canon Kenneth Kearon wrote to the members of the Standing Committee to inform them of the decision. He asked them to remember Archbishop Rowan and his family during this time of transition. And he added: his ministry has coincided with a period of turmoil, change and development in the Anglican Communion, and his careful leadership, deeply rooted in spirituality and theology, has strengthened and inspired us all in the Communion during this time. (continued)
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, has announced today that he will step down from his office by the end of the year. This decision comes after 10 years of service and after his acceptance of the position of Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge. In a statement released by Lambeth Palace, the Primate of England stated: It has been an immense privilege to serve as Archbishop of Canterbury over the past decade, and moving on has not been an easy decision. During the time remaining there is much to do, and I ask your prayers and support in this period and beyond. I am abidingly grateful to all those friends and colleagues who have so generously supported Jane and myself in these years, and all the many diverse parishes and communities in the Church of England and the wider Anglican Communion that have brought vision, hope and excitement to my own ministry. I look forward, with that same support and inspiration, to continuing to serve the Churchs mission and witness as best I can in the years ahead. (continued)
(Sir Europe - Brussels) - Finding the most interesting enterprise-promotion initiatives; sharing examples of optimum enterprise-promotion policies; raising awareness of the role businessmen play in society; encouraging wanna-be businessmen. These are the aims of the European Enterprise Promotion Awards that the EU is launching for 2012 as well. The goal of this initiative is to reward the achievements of public organisations and public/private partnerships in the promotion of enterprises, the EU Executive explains. One of the themes of the 2012 Awards will be the funding of small- and medium-sized enterprises for those businessmen who wish to expand their range of action and enter new markets. The Awards cover five categories: Promoting entrepreneurial spirit; Investing in skills; Improving the entrepreneurial context; Promoting the globalisation of enterprises; Responsible and inclusive entrepreneurship. The competition will consist of two stages, a national one (by 16th July, each country shall select two entrants for the next stage) and a European one. Finally, the awards will be given during an assembly of SMEs, in Cyprus in November. Info: http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/sme/best-practices/european-enterprise-awards/index_en.htm.
(Sir Europe - Bratislava) - Christian community is faced with a great moral responsibility for those who consider abortion to be a way out of difficult situations. We demand that the Ukrainian state should confirm the right to life of unborn but conceived persons by prohibiting abortions on legislative level, reads an official statement of the Synod of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and Conference of the Roman Catholic Church in Ukraine. The document says that human life is sacred and untouchable as it originates from God and belongs to Him only. Representatives of both Catholic rites point to the fact that from the viewpoint of medical ethics, abortion is a distortion and defilement of the high calling of the doctor whose task is to treat and save human life and not to destroy it through direct intervention.
(Sir Europe - Bratislava) - On Monday 19th March, the cloister of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart in Milan will host an exhibition organised by Milans university and the Catholic university Peter Pazmany of Piliscsaba. The exhibition will present the life and work of St Stephen of Hungary, the founder of the Hungarian State. The exhibition will open at 05.00 pm in the Great Hall of the University: people may visit the exhibition, which, in addition to the Saints life, will also showcase the history of the Hungarian people, the saints of Hungary and the Hungarian Millennium. Covered with ancient and modern pictures, the panels were designed and developed by the students of the Catholic university Peter Pazmany and by the Communion and Liberation movement of Budapest in summer 2010. Nearly two years ago, the exhibition was prepared for the Rimini Meeting and, according to tradition, the panels were not only displayed but also explained by the young people involved in the project. From this perspective, a group of students from the two universities will be there to explain the Milans exhibition to visitors who want to learn more about it. The organisers hope the travelling exhibition may also be taken to other cities across Italy.