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Rome & the World: what we know about Pope’s health • why atheists should be Catholic • & more …

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Antoine Mekary | ALETEIA

I.Media - published on 06/13/22

Every day, Aleteia offers a selection of articles written by the international press about the Church and the major issues that concern Catholics around the world. The opinions and views expressed in these articles are not those of the editors.

Monday 13 June 2022
1. What we know, and what we don’t know, about the Pope’s health
2. Why is it good for you to be Catholic even if you don’t believe in God
3. Several dicasteries and many nunciatures await their incumbents
4. In Germany, a bishop chosen also by lay people? 
5. ‘God may be calling us’: Meet the women aspiring to become deacons

What we know, and what we don’t know, about the Pope’s health

Pope Francis’ announcement that he is postponing his trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Sudan, planned for the beginning of July, due to his osteoarthritis in his right knee, has caused the “ever-active Roman rumor mill” to go “into overdrive,” says Crux journalist John Allen. As a result, the Vatican expert lays out what is known and not about the Pontiff’s health. Firstly he cites the fact that the Pope’s trip to Canada, planned for the end of July, has still not been canceled. If Francis gets surgery on his knee, apparently a relatively simple procedure with a fairly brief recovery time, “he could still make the trip to Canada, and arguably be in better condition to do so,” Allen explains. However the Pope has apparently resisted having an operation. The journalist cites that the next “looming benchmark” comes in late August when Francis is scheduled to create 21 new cardinals, preside over two days of meetings with the world’s cardinals, and do a day trip to the city of L’Aquila, where he will visit the tomb of Pope Celestine V, the last pope to voluntarily resign before Benedict XVI. Citing these events Allen suggests “a note of caution before leaping to conclusions” though, explaining how they could also not reveal anything. “As they say in the TV business, ‘Stay tuned!’” the journalist concludes. 

Crux, English

Why is it good for you to be Catholic even if you don’t believe in God

In an article published on the Spanish website The Objective, Spanish philosopher Miguel Ángel Quintana Paz defends the idea that there is “something Catholic that goes beyond” the Catholic faith itself and that deserves to be shared. He presents the 6 axes of his “Catholic Way of Life,” principles that can be shared, he says, even with those who do not have faith. The first principle of this “Catholic culture” is that a Catholic believes that everyone can and should improve themselves and the quality of their lives and of those around them. He can therefore, secondly, place his trust in life and in the life of his neighbor, and see a solution where everyone else sees the end, notably in poverty and death. Catholicism, third point, values rationality, without obscuring the reality of man who is “also faith, emotion, darkness.” Fourthly, Catholicism advocates a worldliness that includes a sociability that does not let oneself be “completely absorbed by the things of the world.” Finally, fifth and sixth, Catholicism teaches us to see beauty where it is found and to forgive in order to move forward. 

The Objective, Spanish

Several dicasteries and many nunciatures await their incumbents

The entry into force of the Constitution Praedicate Evangelium on June 5 created an institutional vacuum and has highlighted whether or not certain Curia officials will remain in their posts. For example, Cardinal Tagle, until recently prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, and Archbishop Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization, no longer have responsibilities, since their dicasteries have been merged into a single Dicastery for Evangelization, of which the Pope himself is the prefect. In other dicasteries the incumbents remain in office until further notice, even if they are over 75 years old. This is the case with Cardinal Ouellet in the Congregation for Bishops, or Cardinal Sandri in the Eastern Churches. The question regarding organizational structures arises also for the nunciatures: 10% of them are vacant or have an incumbent who is over 75 years old. This is the case of the nunciature in Damascus, with Cardinal Zenari, and the nunciature in Washington, with Archbishop Christophe Pierre. The website Faro di Roma also reports on the appointment of the abbot of the monastery of Monte Cassino as abbot of the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls, marking the return of the Benedictines to the leadership of this Roman basilica after 12 years of absence.

Faro di Roma, Italian

In Germany, a bishop chosen also by lay people? 

At 74 years of age, Archbishop Hans-Josef Becker of Paderborn has asked Pope Francis to be released from his office, believing that the challenges ahead require the younger generation to take over. A process governed by the Prussian Concordat of 1929 is about to begin to find a successor. The Chapter of Paderborn is to draw up a list of candidates which will be forwarded to Rome by the Nunciature. The Pope will then send back a narrowed down selection of three candidates, from which the Chapter will elect the new archbishop. Influenced by the synodal process that is underway, the Chapter has decided that the laity should be more involved in the local stages of the process., German

‘God may be calling us’: Meet the women aspiring to become deacons

While the Catholic Church is not considering ordaining women to the priesthood, the ordination of women to the permanent diaconate is a real possibility, as a commission set up by Pope Francis has been studying the subject, holds the author of an opinion article published in America Magazine. For Anna Keating, the main obstacle in public opinion is the fear that women candidates for the diaconate are not really Catholic. However, she says, the vast majority are “overwhelmingly obedient to the church, which is exactly why they want to assist her in diaconate ministry.” She gives the floor to various women who are convinced that God can call women to this mission. They ask for the possibility of discerning within their communities a possible call to the diaconate, recalling that it is a service – and that many would be happy and available to give it.

America, English

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