2012-03-10 Pope Benedict XVI receives the 2012 Annuario Pontificio
Pope Benedict XVI on Saturday was presented the 2012 Annuario Pontificio, which is the annual yearbook of the Catholic Church.
The presentation was made by the Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, and the Substitute for General Affairs to the Secretary of State, Archbishop Angelo Becciu.
They were accompanied by Monsignor Vittorio Formenti, director of the Central Office of Church Statistics, Professor Enrico Nenna and other collaborators. The men also presented the Annuarium Statisticum Ecclesiae to the Pope, who expressed his gratitude to all of those who worked on the two books.
The editions give a snapshot of the Church in 2011. For example, in the last year, the Pope erected eight Episcopal Sees, one Personal Ordinariate, and one Military Ordinariate.
The statistical data is from the year 2010.
It shows just under 1.196 billion Catholics in the world, compared to 1.181 billion in 2009. The Catholic proportion of the world population has stayed fairly stable, at 17.5%.
From 2009 to 2010, the number of bishops in the world increased from 5,065 to 5,104.
The growth trend in the number of priests, which began in 2000, continued in 2010. There are now 412,236 priests (277,009 diocesan, 135,227 religious), an increase of 1,643.
The number of permanent deacons increased from 38,155 to 39,564, with over 97% of them in North America and Europe.
Globally, the number of professed religious from 2009 to 2010 rose from 729,371 to 721,935.
The number of students of philosophy and theology in diocesan and religious seminaries has steadily increased (4%) over the last five years. There were 114,439 seminarians in 2005 and and 118,990 in 2010. Words of thanks and Greetings.
The words of Bishop Emmanuel Badejo, coadjutor Bishop of Oyo in Nigeria capture the appreciation the generosity from New Zealadn donors generates; Bishop Emmanuel Badefo Nigeria. "It was by divine intervention that your letter announcing a grant of $NZ20, 000 to the diocese of Oyo, Nigeria, came to me yesterday. Well, it was a real blessing. I wish to thank you and all the donors and the Pontifical Mission Society of New Zealand for the grant. In a small rural diocese like Oyo located among a huge Muslim population, it is indeed a great help.
2011-12-30 THE NAMES OF PASTORAL WORKERS, BISHOPS, PRIESTS, MEN AND WOMEN RELIGIOUS AND LAY CATHOLICS, KILLED IN THE YEAR 2011
Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) - Once again this year, Fides publishes an annual document of all the pastoral workers who lost their lives in a violent manner over the course of the last 12 months. According to information in our possession, during 2011, 26 pastoral care workers were killed: one more than the previous year: 18 priests, 4 religious sisters, 4 lay people.
For the third consecutive year, the place most affected, with an extremely elevated number of pastoral workers killed is AMERICA, bathed with the blood of 13 priests and 2 lay persons. Following is AFRICA, where 6 pastoral workers were killed: 2 priests, 3 religious sisters,1 lay person. ASIA, where 2 priests, 1 religious sister, 1 lay person were killed. The least affected was EUROPE, where one priest was killed. Report from Marist St Francis, America Samoa
- A new roof for the School Admin Block
Dear Fr. Paul, Greetings from Marist St. Francis. Talofa! I am responding to a request from our Bishop J. Quinn Weitzel regarding some information about the use of the donation from your organization. His Grace Bishop Quinn already provided you with a report on the grant, and this is only an additional information from our school. Sr. Kathleen Hanna noted there are 147 students on the roll, all under 14 years of age. We have 11 lay teachers, 2 Religious Priests, 1 Diocesan Priest and 4 Salesian Sisters sisters. Here are some photos from our school. The school administration block was really in need of fixing the roof because it was leaking very badly. As our school is situated on a mountain overlooking the Pacific Ocean, all building materials will rapidly corrodes because of the sea air that easily enter and destroy everything. Some parts of the school building were damaged from the earthquake that occured in September 2009.
With this, on the behalf of His Grace Bishop Quinn, Salesian Sisters, Staff and Students of Marist St. Francis, I would like to say 'Thank You' very much for the great help that we received from your organization through the Society of the 'Holy Childhood.' May God continue to bless you all and the great mission that you are offering for the children of the world.
Sr. Caroline Tevaga
(school principal) MEET FR MICHAEL USENI - HIS JOURNEY TO PRIESTHOOD
IN THE VILLAGE
I was born on 24th April 1969, first born son in a family of eight, five girls and three boys. I come from the very southern part of Malawi in Chikwawa district. My village is called Muonda. I was born in this village, not at a hospital, with the help of traditional birth's attendants.
In October 1976 I started primary school education. The primary school was four kilometres away, next to the Catholic Out church where we went to pray on Sundays. Some villages were even further away from the school and church. We all went to school and church on foot on dusty roads and foot paths. Our homes were made of mud and thatched with grass, usually with three small bedrooms, one for the parents, one each for the boys and girls.
After my first communion in 1977 on 25th December, I became an altar boy. We had a Dutch Montfort Missionary as our Parish Priest. He lived 27 kilometres away. We had Mass only once in a month, because there were many out-churches in the parish for him to drive to.
THE MINOR SEMINARY
In November 1980, a minor seminary, known as “Mzimu Woyera”, (“Holy Spirit”) was opened in the diocese with the assistance of the Society of St Peter the Apostle. It began only with two classes, standard 6 and standard 7 but developed up to Form 4. The Bishop really wanted the Diocese to have its own seminary because there were only two diocesan priests at the time - the rest were foreign missionaries.
On 7th October 1981, I and four other boys from my parish, after successfully passing the entrance exams, entered the minor seminary, I was 12 years old. We were 56 in the class. It was my first experience of being away from my home as the seminary was about 80 kilometres away.
The school fee per term was equivalent to 6 British Pounds. This was a lot of money for my parent. Malawi’s population at present is about 13 Million and 85% of these people live in the rural areas, and exist by subsistence farming. So they could not meet all seminary costs. The Society of St Peter the Apostle gave a huge subsidy and kept the seminary going. Thanks to the good heart and humble spirit of all the benefactors and donors who funded me and still are sharing with us.
I completed my Primary School education in 1985. There were 33 remaining in our class. Some went onto the State secondary school and 20 of us stayed on. In 1986 I had my first chance to witness the ceremony of ordination to the priesthood. One Deacon, who taught us in the minor seminary for one year, was being ordained, so we got a chance to go. This was the moment I really made a decision that I should follow the Lord’s path as a priest. Everything that happened at this ordination ceremony penetrated my heart and made me more resolved. In 1988 I finished my Secondary school education and out of a class of 10, six of us decided to go on to the Major Seminary Kachebere to study Philosophy, Social Sciences and Liberal Arts.
THE MAJOR SEMINARIES
In the Major Seminary, we had students from all over the country. This is a seminary for all the seven dioceses of Malawi. It was an opportunity and an experience to meet other students from all over the country. People of different tribes and languages, but brought together by faith and the will to serve God as priests one day. These were challenging years, but prepared me for the great task of serving God’s people in many and different situations. We were 52 in our class.
After three years of Philosophy, 22 of us made it to St. Peter’s Senior Seminary another national seminary where we had four years of Theology. In January 1995, 10 of us were ordained Deacons. We were two from my diocese, Chikwawa. On 16th July 1995, the Bishop who opened the minor seminary “Mzimu Woyera”, (“Holy Spirit”) 15 years ago, ordained us priests in the grounds of the seminary as the Cathedral was too small to contain all the people.
MY YEARS IN PRIESTHOOD
My first appointment as a new priest was to teach in the minor seminary where I was once taught. I was teaching Mathematics, Latin and Biology. I stayed at ‘Mzimu Woyera’ Seminary for four years; in 1999 I went to a Parish, Our Lady of Fatima Parish, where I served as curate for two years, I was also appointed Diocesan PMS Director in this year. In the year 2001 I was made Parish Priest and moved to one of the remotest parishes in the Diocese. I replaced the Missionaries, St. Patrick’s Fathers from Ireland. I was the first indigenous priest to be at the Parish. I was alone and this was not an easy task.
The same year I was appointed Diocesan Pastoral secretary and things became really touch and challenging. The Parish, Our Lady of the Poor has 21 out-churches, the furthest being 38 kilometres away reached on my motor bike. I served this parish for seven years until in 2008 when I was appointed by Rome as the National PMS Director and the Bishops appointed me as the National coordinator of the Youth and Laity in the Pastoral Commission. I had to move the same year to the Catholic Secretariat, away from my Diocese, to take up these new posts, and that’s where I am serving at present. My journey continues.
The Pontifical Society of St Peter the Apostle was founded to—
- Promote Vocations in the Church.
- To make Christians aware of the need for local clergy and religious in the emerging Church — the Missions.
- To contribute funds and resources to enable seminaries to be founded.
- To assist male and female candidates be formed for the consecrated life.
Currently SPA supports over 900 seminaries and hosts of religious formation houses in the Missions.