Thursday, October 21, 2010

New Salesian Cardinal "a vanguard soldier of Papa Ratzi's 'border patrol'"

That's how widely respected Vatican-watcher Rocco Palmo described Salesian Cardinal-designate Angelo Amato in a June, 2007 posting. The appointment is wonderful news for Catholics, and special source of joy to Salesians in particular. In the same posting, Rocco quoted from an address His Eminence made to a group of Italian Chaplains:

"'Reading the daily papers -- or using internet, TV or radio -- every day we see a perverse film about evil, which is 'filmed' in every part of the world with scenery and backdrops ever more cruel, as we see in the thousands of provocations of international terrorism,' the archbishop said.

'Besides the abominable terrorism of suicide bombers, which is ever-present in the media,' he went on, 'there is the so-called terrorism with a human face, which is also a daily occurrence and just as repugnant, which continues to be propagated by the media, manipulating traditional language with expressions that hide the tragic reality of the facts.'

Among his examples, Amato cited abortion clinics -- 'authentic slaughterhouses of nascent human beings'; 'the laboratories where, for example, RU-486, the morning-after pill, is made or where human embryos are manipulated as if they were simply biological material... [and] the parliaments of so-called 'civil' nations which promulgate laws contrary to the nature of the human person, like the approval of marriages between persons of the same sex, or of euthanasia.'

Six days later, amid a sustained furor in the press over his assertions, the complete text of Amato's remarks ran as a spread in the Sunday edition of the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano.

The move was an unmistakable indicator that the Holy See stood firmly by the speech."

A good man! Cardinal-designate Amato has been a Salesian priest since 1967, and was ordained archbishop of Sila on Jan. 6, 2003, by Pope John Paul II himself. After serving as secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, he was named prefect of the Congregation of the Causes of Saints on July 9, 2008.

In other Salesian news, Father Massimo Palombella has been appointed the director of the Sistine Chapel Choir. Father Palombella succeeds Monsignor Giuseppe Liberto, who held the post since 1997.

Father Palombella was born in Turin on Christmas Day in 1967--wow, quite a young man! He was ordained a Salesian priest in 1996. He has studied with maestros Luigi Molfino, Valentín Miserachs Grau, Gabriele Arrigo and Alessandro Ruo Rui, and earned a diploma in Choral Music and Composition.

He is the founder and director of the Inter-university Choir of Rome. He has worked in university ministry in the Diocese of Rome since 1995, and teaches in the faculties of theology, eschatology and of music and liturgy at the Pontifical Salesian University.

Congratulations, Father Palombella!

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