Papal visits to Krakow, Fatima being proposed

In addition to visiting Germany in August for the 2005 World Youth Day, Pope Benedict XVI may also travel to the Polish city of Krakow and the Fatima Shrine in Portugal.

A few days ago the Holy Father confirmed he would be present at World Youth Day in his country of origin and on Sunday he promised Governor Edmund Stoiber of Bavaria that he wishes to visit the German state where he was born “soon.”

According the Italian press, a visit to Krakow, where Pope John Paul II was archbishop, on the way to Cologne is under consideration.  For his part the Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints, Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, suggested that the Pontiff could visit Fatima in 2006 to canonize Marian visionaries Francisco and Jacinta Marto.

The cardinal said the visit was possible and that he would do “everything possible to make it happen,” although he acknowledged that “these things are the exclusive responsibility of the Holy Father.”

Cardinal Saraiva Martins said the cause of the Fatima children has always been a subject “much appreciated by the Holy See” and also by Benedict XVI who, as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, “presided at the May 13, 1996 pilgrimage in Fatima, at which he was impressed by the devotion and faith of the Portuguese people.”

Cardinal Camerlengo calls on Spanish King and government to conserve dignity of the family

ROME – On the heels of the approval by Spain’s Congress of homosexual unions, the Cardinal Camerlengo, Eduardo Martinez Somalo, called on the Spanish royal family and members of the government to conserve and advance the dignity of the person and the family in Spain.

During a dinner held at the residence of the Spanish ambassador to the Holy See, the cardinal demanded the conservation of “the patrimony of personal, familiar, and social human dignity, authentic natural and religious ethic values that belong to the very essence of the person and derive from our genuine human roots and spiritual experiences.”

“There cannot be authentic integral progress if the material is not stimulated and vivified by the spiritual,” Cardinal Martinez said.  “Whoever tries to build a world without God—as John Paul II said so many times—ends up building a world against man,” the cardinal added.

In addition to the King and Queen of Spain, top political leaders also attended the dinner.

During his remarks, Cardinal Martinez thanked the Spanish King and Queen for their presence both at the funeral of John Paul II and at the installation Mass of Benedict XVI.

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