Saturday, April 28, 2007

Preparing for Pope Benedict's Trip to Brazil (May 2007)

  • The Brazilian Bishops' conference has released the finalized schedule for Benedict's visit [May 9th-13th 2007], where he will open the 5th General Conference of the Episcopate of Latin America.

  • Official Website for the Papal Visit to Brazil Brazilian Bishops Conference.

  • A look ahead to Benedict in Brazil, by John Allen, Jr. National Catholic Reporter May 3, 2007.

  • The Associated Press reports that the Pope is expected to attract more than 1 million to open-air Masses in Brazil:
    The pope, in his first trip to Latin America, will only visit the state of Sao Paulo, Brazil’s wealthiest and most populous, home to one of the world’s the largest Roman Catholic dioceses.

    The pontiff will celebrate his first open-air Mass before a crowd that is expected to top 1 million people on May 11 at Sao Paulo’s Campo de Marte airport, said Odilo Pedro Scherer, the archbishop of Sao Paulo.

    At least 350,000 people are expected to attend the second open-air Mass on May 13 at the small city of Aparecida, Scherer said.

    Home of Brazil’s biggest shrine, Aparecida was named after Nossa Senhora Aparecida, or Our Revealed Lady, the patron saint of the world’s largest Roman Catholic country.

  • On his apostolic journey to Brazil in May, Benedict XVI will stay in a Benedictine monastery during his days in São Paulo, reports Zenit News:
    São Paulo doesn't have an apostolic nunciature, and due to the impossibility of accommodating the Pope in the archbishop's palace, the then archbishop of São Paulo, Cardinal Cláudio Hummes requested Abbot Matthias Tolentino Braga of the Benedictine monastery to receive the Pope.
  • Rabbi Charged With Shoplifting To Meet Pope Benedict XVI - April 6, 2007:
    SAO PAULO, Brazil (AP) -- A rabbi who temporarily resigned last month as head of South America's largest Jewish Congregation after being arrested in Florida on shoplifting charges, said he will meet with Pope Benedict XVI when the pontiff visits in May.
  • Pope hopes to stem loss of faithful in Latin America International Herald Tribune April 25, 2007:
    Pope Benedict XVI will encourage the Roman Catholic Church to focus on proselytizing to reverse a sharp loss of parishioners in Latin America when he arrives in Brazil next month to meet with regional church leaders, a church authority said Wednesday.

    "The loss of the faithful is an objective fact ... We have lost in terms of numbers, but are winning in those who have strengthened their belief in the Christian message," Argentine Bishop Andres Stanovik, secretary-general of the Bogata-based Latin American bishops council, told The Associated Press.

    Stanovik said that the pope's trip to the Brazilian town of Aparecida to open the once-a-decade meeting of the Episcopate of Latin America and the Caribbean on May 13, would add a new impulse to the church's missionary work in the region.