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Religion, Theology & Spirituality
 CaribbeanChoice : General Discussion : Religion, Theology & Spirituality
Message Icon Topic: Pope Benedict XVI Prepares for Trip to Brazil Post Reply Post New Topic
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Shucander
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Quote Shucander Replybullet Topic: Pope Benedict XVI Prepares for Trip to Brazil
    Posted: 09 May 2007 at 2:42am

Pope Benedict XVI Prepares for Trip to Brazil

Pope Benedict XVI begins his first trip to Latin America this week, traveling to Brazil. He has asked Catholics to pray for the success of the visit to a region that is home to nearly half of the world's Catholics and which the pope has described as "a continent of hope". Sabina Castelfranco reports from Rome.

Pope Benedict leaves Wednesday to spend five days in Brazil, the world's largest Roman Catholic country, where the church faces an uncertain future and falling numbers.

The pope has asked the faithful to pray for the success of his visit, his sixth trip abroad since his election.

Pope Benedict says it is his first pastoral visit to Latin America, where almost half of the world's Catholics live, many of them young people. He says this is why it is called the continent of hope, a hope that concerns not only the church, but all America and the whole world.

During his trip, Pope Benedict will visit Brazil's largest city, Sao Paolo, to open a conference of Latin American bishops, who will discuss strategy for the church. The pope has said he hopes the conference will help Latin American Christians become more aware of their identity as disciples and missionaries of Christ.

The pope says the challenges of the present moment are many and varied, and that is why it is important that Christians be formed to carry a light of holiness.

He will meet with young people and canonize the first Brazilian-born saint, Franciscan Friar Galvao, who lived between 1739 and 1822. He was the founder of the Monastery of Light, now a United Nations heritage location. About one and a half million people are expected to attend the canonization mass on Friday.

In Latin America, Pope Benedict is best known for his actions as cardinal several years ago, when he disciplined several so-called liberation theologians - clergy and lay people who pursued political and social activism.

But this is not expected to be a main topic during this visit. Instead the pope is likely to speak about the need to revitalize the faith and discuss why thousands of Catholics are abandoning the church and converting to other Christian denominations.

He may also discuss how the church will deal with growing secularization in the world and the increasing shortage of priests. Economic injustices and the fight against poverty as well as the importance of marriage and the family also are expected to be on his agenda.

This is the fourth visit by a pope to Brazil, where more than 70 percent of the population is Catholic. But church officials say the number of Catholics is declining by about one percent every year, as many convert to other faiths. - VOA News

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Edited by Shucander - 09 May 2007 at 2:42am
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Quote Shucander Replybullet Posted: 11 May 2007 at 8:31am

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Quote Shucander Replybullet Posted: 12 May 2007 at 3:59pm
Pope Benedict XVI names Brazil's first saint
Pope%20Benedict%20XVI%20celebrates%20the%20open-air%20Mass%20in%20Sao%20Paulo,%20Brazil%20
Believers from across Latin America cheered and waved flags

Pope Benedict XVI has canonised Brazil's first native-born saint, Friar Galvao, to the cheers of up to a million faithful gathered in Sao Paulo.

The Pope announced the sainthood from a throne flanked by bishops and choirs, and overlooked by a giant wooden cross.

The Church has attributed two miracles to Friar Galvao, an 18th Century monk who is still seen as influential.

The open-air Mass marks the highlight of the Pope's five-day visit to the world's most populous Catholic nation.

Hundreds of thousands of believers from across Latin America cheered and waved flags at Sao Paulo's Campo de Marte airfield. Many had spent the night there.

The BBC's Gary Duffy in Sao Paulo says the Catholic Church in Brazil is hoping that the Pope's visit and the canonisation will help reinvigorate the local church, which has lost millions of faithful in recent years to evangelical churches.

FRIAR GALVAO
Brother%20Antonio%20Galvao
Brazil's first native-born saint
Lived from 1739 to 1822
Credited by church with 5,000 miracle cures
Founded monasteries and convents in Brazil

During the Mass, the 80-year-old pontiff encouraged his listeners to follow the example of the new saint by helping the needy "in an age so full of hedonism".

He lauded Friar Galvao as a model of rectitude and humility, and went on to criticise the elements of the media that ridiculed the sanctity of marriage and virginity before marriage.

After canonising Friar Galvao, the Pope also hugged Sandra Grossi de Almeida and her seven-year-old son, Enzo.

She is one of two Brazilian females who the Church says are evidence of divinely inspired miracles that justify Friar Galvao's sainthood.

Friar Galvao is remembered for producing Latin prayers written on tiny balls of paper that, when swallowed, had the apparent effect of curing a range of ailments.

After taking one of these pills, Ms Almeida, who had a uterine malformation that should have made it impossible for her to carry a child for more than four months, gave birth to Enzo.

Friar Galvao is also certified by the Church as healing a four-year-old girl said to have been considered incurable by doctors.

 
Following the Mass, the Pope met some 430 Brazilian bishops at a Sao Paulo cathedral.

Another highlight of the Pope's trip comes on Sunday, when a crowd of at least 350,000 people is expected to celebrate Mass in Aparecida, where the Pope will also take part in a conference of Latin American bishops.

The forum, the first for 15 years, will bring together nearly 200 bishops and cardinals from Latin America and the Caribbean to set out the Church's agenda and future policies in the region

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Quote Shucander Replybullet Posted: 12 May 2007 at 4:08pm

 
 
 
Pope%20Benedict%20XVI%20gestures%20during%20an%20event%20at%20Paca...
Pope Benedict XVI gestures during an event at Pacaembu Stadium in Sao Paulo, Thursday, May 10, 2007.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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