15/10/2015 Synod Hall, Vatican City. Works of the XIV General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops at the presence of Pope Francis.

Pope Francis at the gathering

A press conference held at the Holy See Press Office on January 28 presented the book Witnesses of the Resurrected One, published by the Vatican Press (LEV). The book contains the proceedings of the annual formation course for new bishops organized by the Congregation for Bishops. Cardinal Marc Ouellet, P.S.S., prefect of the Congregation for Bishops; Archbishop Ilson de Jesus Montanari, secretary of the same Congregation; and Archbishop Francesco Cacucci of Bari-Bitonto, rapporteur of the course, were the speakers.

9.03.2013 Vaticano. Il Card. Marc Ouellet.

Cardinal Marc Ouellet

“This experience began from afar,” Cardinal Ouellet said. “Indeed, the Synods held during the last decades have shown that there is a need for the formation of all those who form part of the Church: laypeople, priests, men and women religious, and also bishops… In the light of these declarations, the Congregation for Bishops, after careful discernment, began its experience of the course for new bishops. The first event, coordinated by the then-prefect, Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, was carried out in late June and early July 2001.

“The next one will therefore be the 16th course. Bishops from all over the world will travel to Rome for this initiative, under the patronage of the Congregation for Bishops, in collaboration with the Congregation for the Oriental Churches and, occasionally, the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.

“This means that more than 1,500 bishops have started their pastoral mission via this experience of eight or nine days of shared living, fraternal exchange, conferences, debates and, above all, encounters with the Holy Father and representatives of the Roman Curia and the episcopate worldwide,” Cardinal Oullet said.

“The content shared in this course is published in this book and made available to the public, to allow observations and suggestions to be made that may be useful for improving the experience.”


Archbishop Cacucci explained that “in a time of hyperactivity and fragmentation, the bishop is called upon today more than ever to be a man of synthesis and to help priests, ‘brothers and friends,’ to share the essential. The Congress of Italian Churches, held in Florence last November, was encouraged by the Holy Father to live an effective synodality. Walking together (synod) with priests, consecrated persons and laypeople may require a commitment, but it is an expression of love, of the communion in the Church. It may be said, after St. Augustine, that when one loves, even hardship is beloved. Therefore, to be a ‘witness of the Resurrected,’ the bishop is called upon to be a man of prayer, especially of prayer for intercession.”


Archbishop Ilson de Jesus Montanari added that during these 16 years the number of bishops participating has always been more than 100, and explained that after the first meetings, the Congregation for Oriental Churches joined in the experience, sending more bishops. “This presence has enabled us to obtain a better knowledge of the situation of these churches, which often face problems or are in minority situations, so as to strengthen fraternal relations with them,” he said. – VIS/Vatican Radio


Fr. Giuseppe Costa

“In 2015, LEV (Libreria Editrice Vaticana, the Vatican Press) sold books valued at more than eight and a half million euros,” Press Director Fr. Giuseppe Costa told the Italian news agency Ansa in a recent interview. “This revenue, added to copyright fees, allowed the press to operate as a fully self-sufficient office of the Holy See, and allowed us to give the Holy Father a profit of 480,000 euros in 2014, while we hope to close 2015 with an even greater profit.”

“When the document of Cardinal Sodano, requiring publishers to pay royalties on the texts and speeches of the Pope, was published, not everyone agreed,” Fr. Costa said. “Some said that the Pope belonged to everyone, and that one should not limit his words with royalties and copyrights.

“In fact,” he concluded, “the Vatican Press was entrusted with the task of managing copyrights, and it has led to increased attention from publishers around the world. The Magisterium has never before been published in such quantity.” —agensir.it

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