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Archive of January 18, 2010

Family Research Council to host 'Blogs for Life' conference

Washington D.C., Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - Family Research Council announced today that they will hosting the fifth annual Blogs for Life, a conference for pro-life bloggers and online social media activists.

Blogs for Life will take place on Jan. 22, which is also the day of the 27th annual March for Life in Washington D.C. Tens of thousands of pro-life supporters are expected to take part in the march protesting abortion.

According to the FRC, Blogs for Life is a networking event and an opportunity for pro-life supporters to grow in knowledge of how to best utilize the internet to strategically promote the pro-life cause.

The conference will include prominent pro-life speakers including FRC president Tony Perkins, Jill Stanek, Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List, and Dr. Charmaine Yoest.

Speakers at Blogs for Life are scheduled to discuss opportunities for increasing pro-life support, especially in light of recent polls showing that a growing majority of Americans are identifying themselves as pro-life. The speakers will also outline strategies on how to advance the pro-life message within Congress and the White House.

The Jan. 22 event will also be broadcast live on www.frc.org from 8:30 a.m.--11:30 a.m. ET.

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Msgr. Mulvey humbled and happy to lead Diocese of Corpus Christi

Corpus Christi, Texas, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - Monsignor William Michael Mulvey from the Diocese of Austin was named today by Pope Benedict to become the new Bishop of Corpus Christi, Texas. At a press conference in Corpus Christi on Monday morning, Bishop-elect Mulvey said he was humbled by the appointment, expressed his loyalty to the Holy Father and greeted the faithful of his new flock.

Bishop-elect Mulvey will replace Bishop Edmond Carmody at the helm of the Texas diocese, who stepped down after almost 10 years of service.

Speaking at the Diocese of Corpus Christi's chancery at 10 a.m. local time on Monday, Bishop-elect Mulvey said, “I am humbled and grateful to Pope Benedict XVI for his confidence in choosing me for this indispensable ministry in the Church. I pledge to His Holiness my loyal communion, fraternal love and respect as a bishop of the Church. And to all of the people of the diocese I want to express my esteem for you as brothers and sisters in faith. I pledge to all of you that I will serve you in the name of the Lord to the best of my ability.”

The bishop-elect also related how he received word of the Pope's decision.

“On December 11th Archbishop Sambi, apostolic nuncio to the United States called me in the middle of the afternoon informing me of the Holy Father's decision to appoint me as the 8th bishop of Corpus Christi. There were three people lined up outside my door waiting for their already 'late' appointments, since I was running behind with my schedule. Needless to say the Nuncio's call was a shock and caused time to stand still. For a moment I asked the question 'Did he make a mistake?'; 'Did he have the right telephone number?' And as the reality set in, other questions emerged regarding worthiness, preparation, ability, etc.,” Msgr. Mulvey recalled.

That night was a short one for Msgr. Mulvey, who said that he had “a 'less than refreshing' one hour of sleep.” Being the administrator of the Diocese of Austin since August 2009, he left the next morning for Las Mañanitas and a Mass in honor of the Virgin Mary at the parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Austin. The parish was “full of people full of faith in Jesus Christ and love for Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe. It was truly a celebration,” he said.

The Bishop-elect Mulvey revealed that at that Mass he “not only entrusted myself to our mother, but also the Diocese of Corpus Christi.”

Msgr. Mulvey was ordained to the priesthood on July 29, 1975 by Pope Paul VI along with 359 other priests in St. Peter's Square, according to the Diocese of Austin's website. 

He has since served as parish priest in churches in five different cities in Texas, as director of spiritual formation and most recently vice rector of St. Mary's Seminary in Houston and as an active member of the Focolare movement, worked in directive capacities at the movement's institutions of formation for diocesan priests in Florence, Italy and Hyde Park, N.Y.

The Diocese of Austin reported that Bishop-elect Mulvey is "happy" to have been nominated as the eighth bishop of "the only diocese in the world named after the Body of Christ."

Bishop-elect Mulvey's Mass of Ordination and Installation will be held at Corpus Christi Cathedral on March 25.

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Latin American Catholics continue to show solidarity with Haiti

Lima, Peru, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - Bishops from Latin America are urging the faithful to offer prayers and financial assistance to earthquake victims in Haiti. 

Last week, the president of the Dominican Republic bishops' conference, Cardinal Nicolas de Jesus Lopez Rodriguez sent a letter to Archbishop Louis Kebreau of Cap-Haïtien expressing his nation's sorrow with “everything Haiti is suffering.”

The president of Caritas Peru, Bishop Miguel Irizar, noted last week that “the impact of the disaster has been devastating” and lamented that unofficial statistics indicate “the number of those affected surpasses three million and as many as 100,000 could be dead.” 

Responding to the call by Pope Benedict XVI to help the earthquake-stricken nation, Caritas Peru has launched its own fund-raising appeal, the bishop said.

Last Wednesday at his general audience, the Holy Father invited "everyone" to join with him in prayer for the deceased as he also implored that God provide consolation and relief from suffering to the survivors.

He appealed especially for generosity in giving to "these brothers and sisters who are living a moment of necessity and pain, our concrete solidarity and the proactive support of the international community.”

Also last week, leaders from the bishops' conferences of Costa Rica and Colombia called on Catholics to generously contribute to a Jan. 24 second collection.

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Mexican leader warns of 'conspiracy against the family'

Mexico City, Mexico, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - Jorge Serrano Limon, the director of the organization “Provida” in Mexico, criticized lawmakers of the Mexico City Legislative Assembly last week for legalizing homosexual unions.  He noted that the move was a “conspiracy against the family” that will gravely impact society.

The pro-life leader told reporters that lawmakers have acted out of “total ignorance,” as the family, founded upon heterosexual marriage, is the basis of society.  “Two men or two women are not capable of giving themselves fully to one another and cannot conceive a child.  This goes against nature itself,” he added. 

Serrano also noted that allowing same-sex couples to adopt will negatively affect children because they will not have the opportunity to be raised by both a father and a mother.

Directing his final comments at the current leadership of Mexico City, he slammed government officials for promoting these reforms that fly in the face of nature and true marriage.  “There is a conspiracy against the family in the (current) administration,” he said, as various members of the cabinet are “pro-homosexual.”

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Pope Benedict XVI chooses new primate of Belgium

Vatican City, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - At 69 years-old, Bishop André-Mutien Léonard has been nominated by Benedict XVI as the new Metropolitan Archbishop of Malines-Brussels and primate of the Catholic Church of Belgium.  The Pope's selection of their "most traditional bishop" will bring new direction to the Belgian Catholic Church.

The nomination of Bishop Léonard was officially recognized by the Vatican on Monday, but the story had already been leaked to the Belgian press by the bishop himself. 

In a French-language interview with Belgium's RTL television on Saturday, Bishop Léonard openly confirmed rumors that, as long as the Pope survived the weekend, he would be chosen as the successor to Cardinal Godfried Danneels as the next archbishop of Malines-Brussels and primate of Belgium.

According to Vatican journalist Andrea Tornielli, Bishop Léonard is considered the "most traditional" diocesan leader in the country.  In a Jan. 13 report predicting Leonard's appointment, Tornielli cited what he called the "progressive" French magazine "Golias" which had expressed its "worry" in a 2007 article that the bishop might succeed Cardinal Danneels. 

Archbishop-elect Léonard's critics are concerned about his enthusiastic response to Pope Benedict's decree promoting the 1962 missal, coupled with his defense of Pius XII's alleged "silence" in the face of Jewish persecution during World War II and his stance on natural moral law in defense of "non-negotiable" values.

Bishop Léonard is also known to be very vocal in opposing abortion and euthanasia.

Archbishop-elect Léonard was ordained a priest in 1964 and has been the bishop of Namur, Belgium, the smallest diocese in the country, since his ordination by Cardinal Danneels in 1991. 

Bishop Léonard is a long-time collaborator of Pope Benedict XVI and served with him on the International Theological Commission.

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Vatican confirms existence of possible miracle attributed to Pius XII

Vatican City, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - The Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, confirmed over the telephone to CNA today that a "presumed miracle" attributed to Pope Pius XII is under investigation.  The case involves a patient cured of cancer in southern Italy.

Cardinal Saraiva was quick to caution, however, that there is a big difference between a "presumed" miracle and a "confirmed" miracle.

The case came to the attention of the Congregation for Saints' Causes from the town of Castellammare di Stabia near Naples, Italy.  "Some months ago," the local Sorrento & Dintorni online publication reported on Sunday, a person was discovered to be cured of a form of cancer previously declared incurable after praying for the intercession of Pope Pius XII.

The doctors of the person, of whom no details are public, were unable to give a scientific explanation for the occurrence, according to the article.

According to the same news source, the story was confirmed by Fr. Carmine Giudici, Vicar General of the Diocese of Sorrento, who said, "It's all true."  Fr. Carmine said that the Holy See was in contact with the diocese after having been contacted by a local church-goer who says that he or she received a miracle "by the intercession of Pius XII."

"The archbishop then decided to institute within days the appropriate diocesan tribunal."

The existence of the possible miracle was confirmed to CNA by Cardinal Saraiva Martins on Monday afternoon.

The prefect emeritus also said that it is impossible to estimate the amount of time it might take for the process of confirmation to be carried out.

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Cardinal Schönborn issues apology to bishop of Medjugorje

Mostar, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - Vienna’s Cardinal Christoph Schönborn has faxed a letter of apology to Bishop Ratko Perić following the cardinal's well-publicized visit to Medjugorje. Bishop Perić, whose diocese includes the famous site of alleged Marian apparitions, had previously issued a statement expressing his displeasure at not being informed of the cardinal's visit.

At the end of December 2009, Cardinal Schönborn made what was called a private visit to Medjugorje, where the Virgin Mary has supposedly appeared on a daily basis for over twenty years. The Austrian cardinal's personal secretary said the visit was “private” and not intended to “make a statement” about the authenticity of the apparitions, which do not have Vatican approval.

However, on January 2, 2010, Bishop Perić wrote an open letter to the Viennese Cardinal, saying that the visit could not be considered private because published articles by Kath.net and CNA had made the visit very public.

The bishop also emphasized that the alleged apparitions have caused turmoil in his diocese, including the presence of unapproved religious communities and openly dissenting priests. Cardinal Schönborn’s presence aggravated these problems, Bishop Perić said in his statement.

Bishop Perić also expressed his shock and disappointment at the fact that Cardinal Schönborn had failed to observe the courtesy brother bishops pay of informing the local ordinary of a diocese their plans to visit.

In its most recent statement, the Diocese of Mostar noted on its website that Cardinal Schönborn had a private audience with Pope Benedict in Rome on January 15, and shortly thereafter, the cardinal faxed a handwritten letter of apology to Bishop Perić.

The beginning of the letter reads: “ Your Excellency, Dear Brother in Christ. I have received your letter from January 2 of this year. I regret if you have the impression that my pilgrimage to Medjugorje did a disservice to peace. You can be sure that this was not my intention.”

The contents of the rest of the letter are withheld, but it concludes: “The Mother of God and her divine Son will certainly lead all things towards that which is good. In this trust, I greet you fraternally united in the Lord and remain, Yours, + Christoph Card. Schönborn O.P.”

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Martin Luther King Jr. honored by Catholic Charities, archdioceses

CNA STAFF, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - Catholic Charities of the Washington D.C. Archdiocese will join with Catholic Charities USA in honoring Martin Luther King Jr. by sponsoring the first national “Keep the Dream Alive Mass and Award.” The event will be held on Monday, Jan. 18 at St. Aloysius Church in Washington D.C. and will recognize four national figures who have worked to preserve King's legacy, particularly the reduction of poverty.

“As we celebrate our Centennial Year by renewing our commitment to reduce poverty in America, we join the nation in honoring the Rev. Dr. King as a great champion of the struggle to reduce poverty,” said Fr. Larry Snyder, the President of Catholic Charities USA. “We will present this award annually to national figures who inspire the nation to keep the dream alive by their life work of reducing poverty in America.”

Fr. Snyder will present the award to Allison Boisvert, Social Justice Minister for the Pax Christi Catholic Community in Minnesota; Dr. Arturo Chavez, Ph. D, President and CEO of the Mexican American College and Cultural Center in Texas; Ralph McCloud, Director of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in Washington, D.C. and Rev. Raymond Kemp, STL, a Fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.

Auxiliary Bishop Martin D. Holley will preside over the Jan. 18 Mass at St. Aloysius parish.

The Rev. Dr. Clarence Williams, Catholic Charities senior director of racial equality and diversity initiatives said last Friday that “As we open our Centennial Year, we are bestowing on these four national leaders this coveted lifetime recognition for those who have advocated for and given service to the poor.”

The Archdiocese of Washington also honored the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. at its annual Mass last Friday, Jan. 15.

Before the Mass, attendees enjoyed a program of musical selections from the St. Cecelia African Gospel Choir, dance presentations and dramatic readings from Dr. King's speeches.

In the Archdiocese of Atlanta, a weekend celebration honoring the late Dr. King was held under the theme “In Charity and Truth We Have Unity.” Activities began with a young adult celebration on Friday night at the Catholic Atlanta University Center. Mass was held on Saturday the 16th at the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Atlanta with Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory presiding, and on Sunday a youth celebration took place at St. Peter Claver Regional Catholic School.

On Saturday, Archbishop Gregory stated that “It is providential, that four decades after his untimely death, the influence of Dr. King is in no way diminished, but has increased with the passing years. The reasons for history’s generous elevation of Dr. King are many, but these two stand out: first, he remains an icon for all who believe in the power of non-violent protest and civil disobedience in the cause of justice; and second, his noble character continues to resound effectively in the hearts of millions, his words and actions as moving today, when summoned by memory, as they were when heard and seen the first time.”

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Camillian Hospital one of the few providing assistance to the wounded in Haiti

Rome, Italy, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - The Fides News Agency reported last week that the hospital operated by the Camillian Order is one of the few medical centers able to attend to the wounded in Port-au-Prince, Haiti following the January 12 earthquake.

According to Father Efissio Locci, director of Health and Development for the Camillian Missionaries, the only hospital functioning is that of the Camillians. However, he added, “we are in need of practically everything.”

"The hospital is full. We need medicine, medical equipment for plaster casts, disinfectants and aid to buy food," Fr. Efisio told Fides.

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Pope John Paul II shooter free, mental stability in question

Ankara, Turkey, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - The man who attempted to assassinate Pope John Paul II in 1981 was freed from a Turkish prison on Monday.  His mental stability is in question after a statement was circulated, upon his release, that includes his self-proclamation as being "Christ eternal."

After 52-year-old Mehmet Ali Agca had left the prison in Ankara on Monday, lawyers representing him reportedly distributed handwritten copies of a statement from their client claiming, among other things, that the end of the world is upon us and that he himself is "Christ eternal."

"All the world will be destroyed in this century. Every human being will die in this century," reads the note, according to Italy's Libero News.

Also included in the message are claims that he is "not God" and "not the son of God", but "Christ eternal," the sacred Word made flesh.

The declaration further claims that the "trinity doesn't exist," because the Holy Spirit is no more than a mere angel created by God and that "The Bible is full of errors," which Agca declared he plans to remedy when he writes his own version.

According to the London Times, this is not the first time Agca has made such statements.  Just last week, he wrote a letter to the newspaper, stating that "My plan is to proclaim the end of the world and to write the PERFECT GOSPEL [sic] ... I will proclaim the Perfect Christianity that Vatican [sic] has never understood.”

In the same letter, the Turk wrote that he was “sane and strong both physically and psychologically.”

Agca had been in jail nearly continuously since May 13, 1981 when he shot Pope John Paul II in St. Peter's Square.  Following the Pope's recovery, the Holy Father went to the prison to meet with Agca and forgive his attempted assassin.  Upon his release from jail in Italy, he was extradited to Turkey where he served ten years of time behind bars for his involvement in the assassination of a journalist and robberies he committed in the late-1970's.

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Martha Coakley mindset a 'threat to American freedom,' says critic

Washington D.C., Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) -

Massachusetts Senate hopeful Martha Coakley has come under fire recently for her comments that Catholics who oppose emergency contraception shouldn't work in emergency rooms. Analyzing the remarks in an article this past Saturday, one political commentator said her “No Catholics Need Apply” mentality is a “genuine threat to American freedom.”

Kathryn Jean Lopez, editor of the National Review Online, criticized Coakley's statements in a column on Saturday and examined what she believes to be their far-reaching consequences.

Lopez's article focused on the history and involvement of Catholics in health care, citing the Sisters of Providence as an example. In 1858, Mother Joseph and her sisters traveled some 6,000 miles from Montreal with tools in hand and literally built St. Joseph Hospital, the first permanent hospital in the Northwest, said Lopez. She also stated that similar stories about America's first hospitals, orphanages and schools “abound.”

“If Democrat Martha Coakley is elected to the U.S. Senate on Tuesday as the elected successor to Edward M. Kennedy, she might eventually encounter the statue of Mother Joseph that stands in National Statuary Hall,” Lopez said.

“But Mother Joseph doesn’t belong in the U.S. Capitol, if you follow Martha Coakley’s thinking,” she continued. “Not if Mother Joseph wanted to run her hospital in accord with what her faith taught (and still teaches), what her life gave witness to, and what her habit represented.”

Speaking on the widespread implications of Coakley's on-air statement, Lopez argued that  “Martha Coakley is effectively saying that faithful Catholics can’t work in emergency rooms, whether in public or Catholic hospitals” and that “faithful Catholics cannot be pharmacists” either.

Lopez also argued that Coakley “is saying what the U.S. Senate just said: that an American should not have the freedom to choose whether or not his tax dollars will fund abortions.”

“They will be so used, consciences be damned,” the National Review editor wrote.

Lopez then raised the question of what religious liberty means in our society and what its place is in legislative debate. “Is religious freedom a concession by the State?” she asked. “Or is religious freedom really about the fact that government is limited in its scope and competence, and that some realms of life stand outside the circumscribed authority that a free people is willing to grant its government?”
 
“Coakley believes that religious liberty is not something endowed by our Creator,” reasoned Lopez, “but something the law allows, something the state can change depending on who is in power, or what’s polling well.”

Lopez warned that much hangs in the balance for Massachusetts voters on Tuesday. “The issues they’re grappling with now are national issues of conscience, ones in which the very concept of freedom is up for debate and, even, sale.”

Lopez concluded by saying that “Martha Coakley’s 'No Catholics Need Apply' mindset represents a genuine threat to American freedom – and not just the religious kind.” To read the full column, visit: http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=M2Y2YjQwMTAwZTYwNGVjMDVmNzcwOTA4Y2ExOGFhOTY=

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New Spanish nuncio defends right of family to choose education of children

Madrid, Spain, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - The new Apostolic Nuncio to Spain, Archbishop Renzo Fratini, defended the importance of the family and reaffirmed that one of its main rights is to have a voice in the education of their children.

Several parents in Spain have objected to the course taught in schools called Education for the Citizenry. Those who have voiced their concerns say that the course's content advocates “a purely hedonistic and irresponsible view of sexual and emotional relations.” Others have accused the course of promoting homosexuality.

During a reception hosted by the King and Queen of Spain, the nuncio took the opportunity to speak about “a national consensus in education.”

“The fulfillment of the wishes expressed repeatedly by Your Majesty for achieving a broad national consensus in matters of education would be very helpful to the mission the family has in achieving the common good of society,” he said.

Archbishop Fratini noted that the institution of the family is an instrument for bringing about a just and peaceful society. He recalled that Pope Benedict XVI has emphasized that “the basic unit of society constitutes a permanent call to work for the unity of all...and is the best school for learning values that bring dignity to the individuals and make all people great.”

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Benedict XVI promotes week of prayer for Christian unity

Vatican City, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - After praying the Angelus on Sunday, Pope Benedict XVI welcomed the start of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.  This year, the eight days of meditation take on the theme of "kergyma" or proclamation of the Gospel.

The Holy Father promoted the week, which runs from Jan. 18 - 25, saying that it annually renews the opportunity for us "to revive the ecumenical spirit, to come together, to get to know each other, pray and reflect together."

The Pontifical Council for Christian Unity and the Commission on Faith and Order of the World Council of Churches jointly prepared and published a brochure outlining that the 2010 theme of the prayer for unity would be "kergyma,"or "preaching" in Greek, and that Chapter 24 of the Gospel of St. Luke is the biblical text for meditation. 

In this text, Jesus is found to be missing from the tomb, appears to the disciples and calls for them to preach repentance in his name, for the forgiveness of sins, to all nations.

This theme, said Pope Benedict, "harks back to the word of Jesus resurrected to the Apostles: 'You are witnesses of these things.' "

In closing his appeal for the week of prayer, the Holy Father said, "Our announcement of the Gospel of Christ will be so much more credible and effective when we are united in his love, as true brothers.  I invite, therefore, the parishes, religious communities, associations and ecclesial movements to pray incessantly, in particular during the eucharistic celebrations, for the full unity of Christians."

Organizers suggest the following daily meditations for the Week of prayer: Day One, praising the One who gives us the gift of life and resurrection; Day Two, knowing how to share our the story of our faith with others; Day Three, recognizing that God is at work in our lives; Day Four, giving thanks for the faith we have received; Day Five, confessing Christ's victory over all suffering, Day Six, seeking to be ever more faithful to the Word of God; Day Seven, growing in faith, hope and love; Day Eight, offering hospitality and knowing how to receive it when it is offered to us.

A brochure is available online on the World Council of Churches website offering resources for the observance of the week.

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Pope hosts Finnish Lutheran delegation, looks to build on 'sense of brotherhood'

Vatican City, Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - The Holy Father began the Week of prayer for Christian unity as he welcomed  an ecumenical delegation from the Lutheran Church of Finland in audience.  Their visit was celebrated by the Pope, who expressed his hope that the groups efforts would make headway in restoring "our lost unity."

Pope Benedict welcomed the group's 25th annual visit from Finland to celebrate the feast of St. Henrik with gratitude, calling to mind the significant contribution the continuing pilgrimages have made "to strengthening the relations among the Christians" in the Nordic nation.

The Holy Father cited the positive influence of the Second Vatican Council in making such an encounter possible, because through its edicts the Catholic Church is committed "irrevocably to following the path of the ecumenical venture, thus heeding the Spirit of the Lord who teaches us to interpret carefully the ‘signs of the times’"

"This is the path that the Catholic Church has wholeheartedly embraced since that time."

The Pope continued by pointing to the "real, yet still imperfect, communion" of the eastern and western Church traditions in Finland as " a motive to regret the troubles of the past, but it is surely also a motive which spurs us to ever greater efforts at understanding and reconciliation, so that our brotherly friendship and dialogue may yet blossom into a perfect, visible unity in Christ Jesus."

The Holy Father also expressed his hope that measures resulting from current Nordic Lutheran-Catholic dialogue, spurred on a decade ago through the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification, would "contribute positively to the path which leads to the restoration of our lost unity."

The Pope closed by congratulating the delegation on their perseverance in completing 25 years of visits to Rome, thus demonstrating "respect for the Successor of Peter as well as your good faith and desire for unity through fraternal dialogue."

Before imparting the Apostolic blessing on the group he expressed his "fervent prayer" for continued relations, "that the various Christian Churches and ecclesial communities which (they) represent may build on this sense of brotherhood as we persevere in our pilgrimage together."

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Super Bowl pro-life ad to feature Tim Tebow and mother

Colorado Springs, Colo., Jan 18, 2010 (CNA) - A pro-life ad featuring college football star Tim Tebow and his mother will be aired during the Super Bowl broadcast on CBS. The 30-second ad, sponsored by Focus on the Family, intends to encourage respect for life.

Tebow’s parents served as Christian missionaries in the Philippines. His mother, Pam, had contracted a life-threatening infection while pregnant with him, but she refused medical advice to abort her unborn son.

The Super Bowl ad will tell their story, Focus on the Family says. Its theme will be “Celebrate Family, Celebrate Life.”

In the past, Tebow has said he believes his mother’s story has helped women decide not to abort their children.

The Tebows said they agreed to appear in the commercial because they feel very strongly about the life issue.

Jim Daly, president and CEO of Focus on the Family, said the partnership with the Tebows comes at a moment in the culture when families “need to be inspired.”

"Tim and Pam share our respect for life and our passion for helping families thrive," Daly commented. "They live what we see every day – that the desire for family closeness is written on the hearts of every generation. Focus on the Family is about nurturing that desire and strengthening families by empowering them with the tools they need to live lives rooted in morals and values."

He reported that the funding for the ad comes from a handful of “very generous” donors who specifically contributed funds for the project. No money from Focus on the Family’s general fund was used, the organization adds.

"Now that the ad has been shot, we're excited to tell people it's coming, because the Tebows' story is such an important one for our culture to hear," Daly said. "You won't want to miss it."

Last year CatholicVote.org created a pro-life ad using the image of President Barack Obama on the theme “Life: Imagine the Potential.”

The group had submitted the ad for NBC’s Super Bowl broadcast but it was rejected on the grounds that the network does not show ads involving “political advocacy or issues.” CatholicVote.org denied there was anything objectionable in the ad.

Despite NBC’s refusal to air the ad, titled “Imagine,” hundreds of thousands of people still viewed the 30-second spot on YouTube.

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