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placeholder  August 20, 2012   •   VOL. 50, NO. 14   •   Oakland, CA

Aug. 20: (Morning) KCBS radio interview taping

Aug. 22: (Afternoon) Golden Jubilee Mass, Cathedral

Aug. 23-Sept. 4: Vacation

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Collection cancelled

The second collection known as Cathedral Sunday previously scheduled for Sept. 9 has been canceled. Some parishes may have provided parishioners pre-printed envelopes for this and the other 2012 second collections announced at the end of last year.

Funds so designated for the Cathedral ministries will be accepted, but the formal collection has been canceled.

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More summer mixers

Come enjoy the sounds of jazz from Soul Mechanix, complimentary appetizers and the beautiful Lake Merritt view. Two more free Twilight by the Lake mixers are scheduled from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. for Sept. 20 and Oct. 18 at the Plaza of the Cathedral of Christ the Light, 2121 Harrison St., Oakland.

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Fairbanks 50th
Raymond Hyslop of the Tanana Traditional Dance Group performs at a reception marking the 50th anniversary of the Diocese of Fairbanks, Alaska, Aug. 12 in Fairbanks. The diocese is the only one in the U.S. still considered a mission territory. It encompasses 410,000 square miles. Just less than 10 percent of its population is Catholic.
JR Ancheta/cns
Congress should act

WASHINGTON — Since the courts will not act quickly enough to protect the religious liberty concerns prompted by the Obama administration's contraceptive mandate, Congress must "address this urgent and fundamental issue before it completes its business this year," Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo told members of the House and Senate. "Timely and uniform protection of these rights cannot be expected from the current lengthy judicial process," said the cardinal in an Aug. 3 letter to members of Congress.

Unions' essential role

WASHINGTON — Labor unions and other worker associations are necessary to help propel workers and their families out of poverty amid a "broken economy," said the chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development. "Economic renewal that places working people and their families at the center of economic life cannot take place without effective unions," declared Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton in an annual Labor Day statement. "This renewal requires business, religious, labor and civic organizations to work together to help working people defend their dignity, claim their rights, and have a voice in the workplace and broader economy," he said.

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Giffords, husband meet pope
Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., and her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, meet briefly with Pope Benedict XVI at the end of the pope's weekly general audience Aug. 8 in Castel Gandolfo, Italy. Giffords was shot and seriously wounded during a political appearance in 2011. The couple was on a visit to the European Center for Nuclear Research in Switzerland. At the end of the audience, Kelly and Giffords, assisted by a papal aide, went up to greet the pope. Giffords kissed the pope's ring; after a brief chat with Kelly, the pope held Giffords' hand. The personal encounter with Pope Benedict was the second for Kelly, who had joined other crew members from the International Space Station and the space shuttle Endeavour at the papal villa last September.
L'Osservatore Romano/cns

Trial for papal assistant

VATICAN CITY — Vatican magistrates have formally indicted Pope Benedict XVI's personal assistant, Paolo Gabriele, on charges of aggravated theft and have indicted a computer technician from the Vatican Secretariat of State on minor charges of aiding Gabriele after he stole Vatican correspondence. The publication Aug. 13 of the decision of Piero Bonnet, the Vatican's investigating judge, included for the first time the naming of a second suspect, Claudio Sciarpelleti, the Secretariat of State employee. Vatican police found an envelope from Gabriele in Sciarpelleti's desk and arrested him, according to the documents explaining Bonnet's judgment. Pope Benedict could have intervened at any time to stop the investigation and legal process and he still has the option of clearing the two laymen without a trial.

Pray for victims

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy — Pope Benedict XVI asked Catholics around the world to pray and offer material assistance to flood victims in the Philippines and China and to people affected by an earthquake in northwestern Iran. The natural disasters have caused death and injury and left thousands of people homeless, the pope said Aug. 12 after reciting the Angelus in the courtyard of the papal summer villa in Castel Gandolfo.

Saints show holy church

VATICAN CITY — Catholic devotion to the saints appears to be alive and well, and Pope Benedict XVI continues to proclaim new saints at a regular pace. The official calendar of saints' feast days will grow in October when the pope canonizes seven men and women, including Mother Marianne Cope of Molokai and three laypeople: the Native American Kateri Tekakwitha, the Filipino Peter Calungsod (Story on Page 3) and the German Anna Schaffer. The canonization Mass Oct. 21 will be one of the first big events of Pope Benedict's Year of Faith, which is designed to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council and to launch a strengthened commitment to the new evangelization.

Full meaning to life

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy — While people obviously need to provide for their families and even make sure they get some rest and relaxation, the Gospel teaches that it's even more crucial to strengthen one's relationship with God, Pope Benedict XVI said. "Jesus wants to help people go beyond the immediate satisfaction of their material needs, important as they are," he said Aug. 5, commenting on the Sunday Gospel reading during his midday Angelus address. Jesus' mission is to open people's eyes to the possibility of an "existence that is not simply that of the daily worries" about what to eat, what to wear and how to advance in their careers, he said.

Knowledge expanded

VATICAN CITY — Jesuit Father Jose Funes is pleased with the successful landing of the Curiosity rover on Mars, and he thinks "everybody should be happy with the success." The Argentine Jesuit, director of the Vatican Observatory, said the rover's mission is important: "to see if we can learn a bit more about Mars and the possibility of organic elements on the surface of Mars," which would indicate that some living organism had lived or could live on the planet. The Curiosity landed on Mars Aug. 5 and is set to explore the planet for two years.

Folk festival to villa

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy — With his 88-year-old brother sitting by his side, Pope Benedict XVI was treated to an evening of Bavarian folk music and dancing, a clear expression, he said, of a "cheerful culture, imbued with joy." More than 1,000 pilgrims from Bavaria — the majority of them members of choirs, bands and dance troupes — joined the pope and his brother Aug. 3 in the courtyard of the papal villa at Castel Gandolfo.

Youth: Work for freedom

VATICAN CITY — Yearning and working for freedom and peace, young Christians and Muslims must be patient and persistent, recognizing that violence or other apparent "short cuts" that harm others will never lead to justice and lasting peace, said Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran. "In the tormented world of ours, educating the young for peace becomes increasingly urgent," said the cardinal, president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.

— Catholic News Service

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