CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 23 June 2018

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Pope and patriarch decry globalisation of indifference
VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, called on Christians to work together to build a culture of solidarity in the face of growing economic inequality and a lack of respect for the human dignity of the poor and of migrants. 
 
The two met privately on May 26 before addressing an international conference sponsored by the Centesimus Annus Pro Pontifice Foundation, which seeks to promote the teaching of St. John Paul II’s 1991 encyclical on social and economic justice. 
 
“The current difficulties and crises within the global economic system have an undeniable ethical dimension,” Pope Francis told some 500 business leaders, theologians and proponents of Catholic social teaching. 
 
The crises clearly “are related to a mentality of egoism and exclusion that has effectively created a culture of waste blind to the human dignity of the most vulnerable,” the pope said. 
 
A “growing ‘globalisation of indifference’” is seen in the uneven pace of development, “not only in materially poorer countries but increasingly amid the opulence of the developed world,” he said, noting it is also obvious in people’s reactions to migrants and refugees. 
 
Relics of St. John XXIII return to home diocese
BERGAMO (CNS): The relics of Pope St. John XXIII left the Vatican early on May 24 for a 595 kilometre drive to Bergamo, his home diocese meant to mark the 60th anniversary of his election to the ponificate and the 55th anniversary of his death.
 
The glass coffin containing the body was accompanied by Bishop Francesco Beschi of Bergamo and escorted by both Italian and Vatican police officers. The route taken for the trip north was kept secret for security reasons. 
 
When the procession reached Bergamo’s central Vittorio Veneto Square, Bishop Beschi told thousands of people gathered there that it was “with great joy and emotion that I accompanied to our diocese, our city, the urn with the mortal remains—now relics—of John XXIII, which return for a few days to the land of his birth.” 
 
St. John, who opened the Second Vatican Council, was born 25 November 1881, in Sotto il Monte, a town near Bergamo. After his ordination as a priest and years of service in the Vatican diplomatic corps, he was appointed patriarch of Venice in 1953. He was elected pope on 28 October 1958, and died five years later. 
 
Everyone must have affordable health care
VATICAN (CNS): Everyone should have access to essential health services and no one should have to fall into poverty to obtain needed care, Archbishop Ivan Jurkovic, the Vatican observer to United Nations (UN) agencies in Geneva, said. 
 
The archbishop was speaking at the World Health Assembly, a meeting of the member states of the World Health Organisation to set policies and programmes, on May 23.
 
“For many poor communities, families and individuals, access to the much-needed health care services remains an unachieved objective,” he said.
 
“We are all daunted by the disquieting fact that half the world’s population is still unable to obtain many essential health services,” the archbishop said. 
 
“At the same time, hundreds of millions are pushed into extreme poverty because they have to pay for health services entirely from their own meager resources. Since everyone should have the possibility of benefiting from necessary health services without falling into poverty, the virtue of solidarity urges us to work toward this goal,” he said. 
 
Archbishop convicted of abuse cover-up steps aside
ADELAIDE (CNS): Archbishop Philip Wilson of Adelaide, who faces a maximum penalty of two years in jail for failing to inform police about child sexual abuse allegations, said he will stand aside from his duties as archbishop while he considers how to proceed legally. 
 
In a statement on May 23, the archbishop said he was arranging for management of archdiocesan affairs and would step aside as of May 25. 
 
“If at any point in time it becomes necessary or appropriate for me to take more formal steps, including by resigning as archbishop, then I will do so,” Archbishop Wilson said. 
 
“In the meantime, while the remainder of the legal process runs its course, I want to assure the Catholic faithful in the archdiocese of my continued prayers and best wishes and assure everyone that the affairs of the archdiocese will be appropriately managed in my absence.” 
 
The court in Newcastle found that, in 1976, the then-Father Wilson was told by a 15-year-old boy that he had been indecently assaulted by a priest who later died in prison, but that Father Wilson chose not to go to the authorities despite believing the allegations were true.

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