MEXICO'S Church historians are preparing to defend Juan Diego, the visionary of Guadalupe following the publication of a book by a dissident priest.
The priest, Manuel Ohm& Nolasco, is one of the followers of the former Abbot of the Basilica of Guadalupe, Guillermo Shulemburg, who had tried to prevent the beatification of Juan Diego and later, during the process of canonisation, claimed that the visionary never existed.
The priest's book declares that the famous holy image of Our Lady of the Americas on Juan Diego's tilma, or coat, was fake and not of supernatural origin.
'We don't need Vatican III'
THE CHURCH is not ready for Vatican III, a Honduran cardinal has said.
Cardinal Oscar Andres Rodriguez Maradiaga, Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, told the Spanish newspaper ABC that the Church had not yet absorbed the teaching of Vatican II.
"I think Vatican ll is about to reveal many things for the first time," he said.
The cardinal, 59, also rejected calls for celibacy to be made optional for priests.
He said that married clergy had not been successful in many of the Latin American protestant "sects".
Brazil's joy at first saint
TFIE PRESIDENT of Brazil travelled to the Vatican this week as the Pope canonised the country's first ever saint.
President Fernando Henrique' Cardoso met Pope John Paul II shortly before the canonisation of Mother Paulina of the Suffering Heart of Jesus (1865-1942).
The Pope's conversation with
Cardoso was full of humour. Speaking about the papal mission, John Paul 11 explained that, as Bishop of Rome, not only is he a pastor, but also "a gaucho" or cowboy of Rio Grande do Sul.
Cardoso answered wittily, assuring the Holy Father that "not only are you a gaucho, but also a carioca [resident of Rio de Janeiro], and a Brazilian".
Mother Paulina of the Suffering Heart of Jesus, an Italian missionary, founded the Congregation of the Little Sisters of the Immaculate Conception in Brazil at the beginning of the twentieth century. The Order is still active in Latin America and Africa.