Vatican Roundup

Vatican Roundup Cardinal Riccardo Ezzati
Chilean prelate
 to testify
 over alleged abuse cover-ups

The Chilean prosecutor’s office has issued a subpoena to Cardinal Riccardo Ezzati of Santiago regarding his role in the alleged cover-up of sexual abuse by members of the clergy.

In a statement released by the Archdiocese of Santiago, Cardinal Ezzati said he was committed to helping victims “search for the truth” and denied any wrongdoing. “I have the conviction that I have never covered up nor obstructed justice, and as a citizen, I will fulfil my duty of providing all records that will help to clarify the facts,” he said.

The archdiocese confirmed that Cardinal Ezzati is scheduled to testify on August 21.

The subpoena is believed to be related to the case of Fr Oscar Munoz Toledo, the former chancellor of the Archdiocese of Santiago, who was arrested on July 12 following allegations that he abused seven minors in Santiago and Rancagua since 2002.

Rancagua prosecutor Emiliano Arias, accompanied by police, conducted two search-and-seizure operations of archdiocesan offices in connection with the charges against Fr Munoz as well as several other pending investigations.


Pope makes surprise
 visit to

People in a quiet residential neighbourhood of Rome were surprised when a blue Ford Focus came to a stop, and Pope Francis stepped out.

The Pope arrived on July 28 at an apartment building in the city’s Salario neighbourhood just a few blocks from the parish of Santa Maria Addolorata, the Argentine national church in Rome, to visit a friend who was bedridden and had repeatedly invited him to visit. “There is an elderly lady who knows him, but she can’t move,” a neighbour told Dire.

Vatican and Italian plainclothes police officers waited outside while the Pope made his way to the apartment to visit his friend, the agency reported. The visit lasted nearly an hour.

As word spread that Pope Francis was in the neighbourhood, residents gathered around the Pope’s car awaiting his return. He greeted the well-wishers and blessed religious articles they brought to him.

Upon hearing that the Pope was in his building, a resident who was sick for some time, raced downstairs, hoping to greet him. Pope Francis blessed and comforted the man before returning to the Vatican.


Faith is
 by treatment

The love with which individuals and communities treat the poor, the weak and the hungry is the best measure of Faith, Pope Francis said in his Angelus address on Sunday.

“Faced with the cry of hunger – all sorts of ‘hunger’ – of so many brothers and sisters in every part of the world, we cannot remain detached and calm spectators,” the Pope said on July 29.

“The proclamation of Christ, bread of eternal life, requires a generous commitment of solidarity for the poor, the weak, the least important, the defenceless. This action of proximity and charity is the best verification of the quality of our Faith, both on a personal level and on a community level.”

Reflecting on the day’s Gospel of the multiplication of the loaves and fish, the Pope said that though Jesus gave everything for us, even his life, “he certainly did this too: he took care of the food for the body”.

Jesus’ multiplication of the loaves and fish “springs from a concrete fact… people are hungry, and Jesus involves his disciples so that this hunger is satisfied”.