Remarkable Addresses and Suggestions to Synod of Bishops

VATICAN, Oct 8, 01 ( - As the Synod of Bishops entered its second week of discussions, Cardinal Godfried Daneels of Brussels made one of several remarkable addresses to the general congregation.

"At a time when so many moral and religious certainties are shaken, we need a strong pope as well as a strong episcopal college," Cardinal Daneels said. He suggested that the governance of the Church could be more effective if the Synod of Bishops met more frequently, with a more restricted participation, to discuss very specific themes.

Cardinal Frederic Etsou-Nzabi-Bamungwabi of Kinshasa, Congo, offered an even more specific suggestion: that the bishops of each country should "draw up and submit to the [Vatican] Secretary of State a 'profile of the apostolic nuncio,' so that the papal legate would be appointed with an eye to the particular needs of that nation."

Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe, the prefect of the Congregation for Evangelization, made a more general observation. "Conscious of the missionary nature of their own pastoral ministry," he said, "the bishops need to act in such a way that the missionary spirit enlivens all their ecclesial activity."

Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, added that bishops must "reassure the Church, placed in confrontation with secularism, practical apostasy, and the degradation of morals." For that end, Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos said, the Church needs "bishops who guide us with courage-- with the spiritual strength of Ignatius, Iraneaus, Athanasius, Eusebius of Vercelli, Borromeo, Faulhaber, and those who defended and maintained the faith behind the Iron Curtain."

Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi of Genoa added: "In the context of a culture inebriated by current and earthly values, the bishops are called to question the place which the truth/reality of eternal life has in their ministry." Cardinal Tettamanzi observed that every funeral offers clerics an opportunity to remind their people of the central facts of life and death.

Archbishop Paul Josef Cordes, president of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, called attention to one respect in which Church agencies are failing to promote the Gospel. "Today," he said with regret, "many programs of Christian charity are interchangeable with those of the Red Cross or of the United Nations; Christian management does not influence their goals."

And Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, reminded his fellow bishops of the single way in which they should bring hope to the world. He said: "Hope has a face and a name: Jesus Christ, God-with-us. A world without God is a world without hope. Being at the service of hope means to proclaim God with His human face, with the face of Christ."

Catholic World News Service - Daily News Briefs
8. oktober 2001

av Webmaster publisert 09.10.2001, sist endret 09.10.2001 - 16:40