Vatican backs United Nations
THE VATICAN has underlined its support for the United Nations in a letter to the UN Secretary General Koll Arum.
The letter, written by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Vatican secretary of state, said the recent Iraq war highlighted the need for countries to "avoid unilateral actions which could lead to the weakening of international law and existing agreements",
Cardinal Sodano wrote: "Pope John Paul II, recognising the importance of the United Nations, has directed me to express to Your Excellency the Holy See's support for the fundamental role of the United Nations Organisation at the present time.
"The recent Iraqi crisis has drawn attention to the need for a greater commitment to the principles set forth in the United Nations Charter in order to avoid unilateral actions which could lead to the weakening of international law and existing agreements.
"The Holy See is confident that the United Nations Organisation will be able to develop more efficient and concerted forms of cooperation which will enable world leaders to join in combating situations of injustice and oppression, leading to hostility between peoples, rather than building that 'family of nations' of which Pope John Paul II spoke in 1995.
"In seconding the sentiments of His Holiness, I wish to convey the recognition ot the Holy See for your own commitment and that of all those who daily work for peace in the world, especially those associated with the efforts of the United Nations to foster international peace, dialogue and cooperation."
Sodano receives degree for peace
CARDINAL Angelo Sodano, Vatican Secretary of State, has received an honorary doctorate from Warsaw's Cardinal Stefan Wyszynski Catholic University.
The 76-year-old Italian cardinal was awarded the degree in recognition of the "constructive dialogue in favour of peace he carries out with states on the international scene".
Present at the ceremony was Cardinal Jozef Glemp, archbishop of Warsaw and primate of Poland, as well as the papal nuncio, Archbishop Jozef Kowalczyk.
Church cares for drug users
THE CHURCH helps drug addicts to rediscover their dignity through the Gospel and renewed contact with their families, a Vatican official has said.
Archbishop Javier Lozano Barragan, president of the Pontifical Council for Health Care Workers,explained that 'The Holy See proposes a threepoint programme, based on prevention, repression and recovery in the light of values such as solidarity, love and transcendence."
Pope's brother remembered
THE POPE has thanked the staff of a hospital re-named in memory of his late brother.
Edmund Wojtyla, nicknamed "Mundek" was born on August 27, 1906, in Krakow, and as a young doctor practised his profession at Powszechny Hospital in Bielsko-Biala.
He died of scarlet fever on December 4, 1932, an illness he caught from a patient in Bielsko-Biala, a town less than an hour away from Wadowice. Edmund had worked at the hospital as a resident doctor since his graduation.
The hospital's doctors remembered Edmund's total dedication to his work, and his sense of humour.
THE ENGLISH summary of
Pope John Paul II's weekly general audience, given at St Peter's on Wednesday, June 18, 2003.
"Dear Brothers and Sisters, today's Canticle, taken from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah, celebrates the rebirth and renewal of Jerusalem, portrayed as a Bride prepared for her wedding.
"In the Scriptures this spousal imagery evokes the covenant of love between God and his People, which brings joy and hope for the future. The New Testament takes up this imagery to describe the love of Christ for the Church, his Bride, purified of sin, holy and radiant with the joy of salvation.
"I offer a warm welcome to all the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors present at today's Audience ... Upon all of you I cordially invoke the Holy Spirit's gifts of wisdom, joy, and peace."