Return to the Current Issue of the Justpeace Front Page .... Continue to Home Index
Vatican Justpeace News
Gathered from here and there in cyberspace. . .
Holy Father's Message for World Food Day 1998
Holy See Speaks on Sanctions to UN Committee
Intervention of the Holy See to the 3rd Committee of the UN General Assembly (Beijing Women's Conference process)
Vatican meeting on human rights and rights of the family
Vatican ready to recognize Palestinian state
Vatican Information Service
VATICAN MEETING ON HUMAN RIGHTS AND RIGHTS OF THE FAMILY
VATICAN MEETING ON HUMAN RIGHTS AND RIGHTS OF THE FAMILYTOP
VATICAN CITY, OCT 20, 1998 (VIS) - The Second Meeting of Politicians and
Legislators of Europe, sponsored by the Pontifical Council for the Family,
will take place in the Vatican from October 22 to 24 on the theme "Human
Rights and the Rights of the Family."
The meeting, states a council communique published today, takes place
within the context of the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of
Human Rights. Approximately 200 politicians, legislators, professors and
ambassadors from European countries accredited to the Holy See are expected
to attend. Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, council president, will deliver
the opening speech.
Members of the Roman Curia scheduled to participate include Cardinal
Secretary of State Angelo Sodano, Archbishops Giovanni Battista Re,
substitute of the Secretariat of State, Jean-Louis Tauran, secretary for
Relations with States and Renato Martino, Holy See permanent observer to
the United Nations.
The work sessions will be presided by Cardinals Bernardin Gantin, dean of
the College of Cardinals; Lucas Moreira Neves, prefect of the Congregation
for Bishops; Jorge Arturo Medina Estevez, prefect of the Congregation for
Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments; Alfons Maria Stickler,
archivist and librarian emeritus of Holy Roman Church; Dario Castrillon
Hoyos, prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy; Thomas Joseph Winning,
archbishop of Glasgow; James F. Stafford, president of the Pontifical
Council for the Laity, and Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, secretary of the
Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
Cardinal Francis Bernard Law, archbishop of Boston, is also expected to
CON-F/HUMAN:FAMILY RIGHTS/LOPEZ TRUJILLO VIS 981020 (250)
From Vatican Information Service
HOLY SEE SPEAKS ON SANCTIONS TO U.N. COMMITTEE
HOLY SEE SPEAKS ON SANCTIONS TO U.N. COMMITTEETOP
VATICAN CITY, OCT 15, 1998 (VIS) - Msgr. James Reinert, member of the Holy
See delegation before the Second Committee of the 53rd Session of the
United Nations General Assembly, spoke in New York on October 13 on Item
92A, "Business and Development," highlighting in particular the issue of
Msgr. Reinert reiterated the Holy See's opposition to "the use of
indiscriminate coercive economic sanctions against a nation." He added:
"The Holy See recognized that there are legitimate reasons that the
international community may resort to sanctions. But starvation may not be
a means of warfare or a consequence of a legal decision. Sanctions should
be a temporary means of exerting pressure on decision makers, whose choices
threaten international peace. Sanctions should be proportionate to the
goals they hope to achieve and they must always be accompanied by a
dialogue between the parties involved."
DELSS/SANCTIONS/UN:REINERT VIS 981015 (150)
Vatican ready to recognise Palestinian state
Vatican ready to recognise Palestinian stateTOP
By Marwan Sudah
Jordan Times, October 15, 1998
AMMAN (Petra) - The Vatican's chargi d'affaires in Jordan,
Monsignor Dominique Rezeau, Wednesday said the Vatican is
ready to recognise a Palestinian state and opposes Israel's
expansion of the western borders of Jerusalem and the
construction of Jewish settlements in Palestine.
"The Vatican is deeply interested in Palestinian legislation and
freedom of worship in Palestine, and it is ready to recognise a
Palestine state," said Rezeau in a statement marking the 20th
anniversary of the pontificate of Pope John Paul II.
"As we recognised the state of Israel, we will be ready to recognise
the state of Palestine as part of the rest of the world community,"
He noted that the Vatican was among the first nations to recognise
the independence of Bosnia and Croatia.
The Palestinians have the right to life and security, and the Vatican
will back the rights of people in conformity with religious and
humanitarian principles, Rezeau said.
"The Palestinians have full rights to their land, and Israel cannot
exercise its own rights without recognising those of the Palestinian
people," added the envoy.
Referring to Jerusalem, Rezeau noted the pope's declared stand
and the Vatican's rejection of the Israeli government's expansion of
the boundaries of Jerusalem.
"The Israeli measures do not help current efforts for holding a
dialogue on the future of the Holy City, which is the cradle of the
monotheistic religions," he said.
Rezeau said the Vatican supports the U.N. General Assembly
decision condemning the building of Israeli settlements in
Jerusalem and calling for a just, comprehensive and lasting
settlement of the Jerusalem issue through the final status
Asserting that any solution should guarantee the rights of worship
for all, Rezeau said the Vatican appeals to the world community to
refrain from taking any decisions that might negatively affect the
future of Jerusalem.
"The Holy See calls on all parties concerned with the Middle East
problem... to pursue efforts to help achieve peace based on the
principles and concepts of the 1991 Madrid peace conference and
respect signed agreements and accords and the principles of
justice," Rezeau added.
Voicing the Vatican's appreciation of the efforts exerted by His
Majesty King Hussein and HRH Crown Prince Hassan, the Regent,
with regard to Jerusalem, Rezeau said the Vatican also considers
Jordan part of the Holy Land, as it is home to shrines, churches
and the site where Jesus was baptised in the Jordan River.
Describing Jordanian-Vatican relations as "strong and
progressing," Rezeau said the Pope may visit Jordan in the course
of celebrations marking the end of the second Christian
millennium, adding that the Vatican is currently coordinating with
the Jordanian government over this event. He did not elaborate.
From Vatican Information Service
HOLY FATHER'S MESSAGE FOR WORLD FOOD DAY 1998
HOLY FATHER'S MESSAGE FOR WORLD FOOD DAY 1998TOP
VATICAN CITY, OCT 16, 1998 (VIS) - Pope John Paul, through Cardinal
Secretary of State Angelo Sodano, sent a message to Jacques Diouf, director
general of the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), for
the celebration today of World Food Day.
The Pope remarks that the theme chosen for this year's commemoration,
"'Women Feed the World,' moves FAO's range of concerns ... to a
consideration of the essentially human aspects of the struggle against
hunger and malnutrition."
"The Church honors and respects 'the feminine genius' in all its forms
and recognizes that in many practical ways women in rural areas are the
point where the life of the family and the life of the community merge.
This means that there can be no separation of women's life in the family as
wives and mothers and their life in society as workers and economic
producers. What emerges at both points is their legitimate desire to play
their part in working for the common good. Such a vision calls for a
recognition of the equality of women and especially their equal rights."
The Pope says he hopes that this World Food Day "will lead in turn to a
deeper understanding of women not only as 'feeders of the world', but as
peace-makers and guardians of true human values."
MESS/WORLD FOOD DAY/FAO:DIOUF VIS 981019 (220)
Intervention of the Holy See to the 3rd. Committee of the General meeting
Intervention of the Holy See to the 3rd. Committee of the General meeting ofthe U.N., 19.10.1998 TOP
The Holy See, by joining the consensus which adopted the Beijing Platform
for Action, signalled its approval for what it considered "the living heart of the
Platform" - its sections on the neeeds of women in poverty, on ending
violence against women, on access for women to employment, land, capital
and technology, on strategies for the advancement of women which included
calls for increased literacy and education. Despite the reservation the Holy
See was forced to raise to certain sections of the Beijing Platform, it did join
the consensus, convinced of the fact that there exists a close correspondence
between that "living heart" and Catholic social teaching.
In the time since the Conference ended, as always in the past, the Church has
not ceased to be concerned over these matters. She is still uneasy that women
bear so disproportionate an amount of the suffering in the world. Too many
women continue to be poor, powerless and victims of violence. According to
the 1997 UNDP Human Development Report which focused on poverty,
worldwide income-poor persons are less likely to be adult males, and more
likely to be children, elderly persons or women. Female wages are likely to be
only three-fourths of male wages. Men need to spend 47% of their time in
work, while women have a triple workload of child-rearing, household
management and of income- generating work.
Many women in the world are still illiterate. Although between 1970 and
1995, adult illiteracy declined greatly, there remains a significant backlog.
Today 538 million women worldwide are illiterates. Female enrollment in
schools, even at the primary level, remains far lower than male enrollment and
drop-outs are always higher for girls than for boys.
Although in the past three decades, women's access to health care has greatly
improved, the number of deaths from pregnancy- and delivery - related
causes is still rising. More than half the pregnant women in developing
countries suffer from anaemia. In many sections of the world, trained health
personnel are not available to attend deliveries.
Last year alone, the terrible disease of AIDS took the lives of 1 million
women, raising the number of AIDS orphans under the age of 15 to 8 million.
Aware of the injustices that women have endured, the Church has committed
herself to renewed efforts to lift the status of women. On the eve of Beijing
(Message to the Delegation of the Holy See to the Fourth World Conference
of Women, 29 August 1995), Pope John Paul II pledged the Church to an
option particularly in favor of girls and women. He called on all Catholic
caring and educational institutions to adopt a concentrated and priority
strategy directed to girls and women, especially to the poorest, over the
He called on congregations of religious Sisters to identify and reach out to girls
and young women most on the fringes of society.
He asked all the educational services linked to the Church to guarantee equal
access for girls, to educate boys to a sense of women's dignity and worth, to
provide additional possibilities for girls who have suffered from disadvantages,
and to identify and remedy the reasons for girls leaving schools before they
complete their education. He appealed to Catholic medical institutions,
especially those concerned with primary health care, to make basic health
care for girls a hallmark of their service.
He requested Catholic universities and colleges to ensure that, in the
preparation of future leaders of society, they acquire special sensitivity to the
concerns of young women. He urged women's organizations within the
Church to establish patterns of solidarity so that their leadership and guidance
can be put at the service of girls and young women.
Earlier, on 29 June 1995 in his Letter to Women, Pope John Paul II, stressing
the importance of women's role, had stated, "Thank you, every woman, for
the simple fact of being a woman! Through the insight which is so much a part
of your womanhood you enrich the world's understanding and help to make
human relations more honest and authentic".
This year the United Nations and the whole world community are beginning a
solemn reassessment of the progress made in implementing the measures of
the Beijing Conference to better the lot of women in the world. The Church is
fully aware of the importance of this undertaking. It urges all people, society
as a whole and political authorities everywhere to make a genuine contribution
to the goal of advancing the status of women as a guarantor of a civilization
which honors the dignity of the human person. The Holy See considers itself in
solidarity with all authentic international initiatives to improve the situations of
women, those aimed at bettering women's living conditions, and those aimed
at creating a new awareness in society of the need for respect for women, for
their equal dignity and for their inalienable rights.
In this spirit, the Holy See looks forward to closely following the preparations
for Beijing + 5.