with this man, but . • •
Alan McElwain writes TWO OLD FRIENDS, with sharply differing ideologies, met and warmly embraced in the Vatican. One was the late Pope John, who had been elected just a few months earlier in 1958. The other was leading French Socialist, Vincent Auriol. President of the French Republic from 1947 to 1954. who died recently.
Pope John received M. Auriol in private audience as honorary president of the World Veterans' Federation, then meeting in Rome. The two became deeply attached when Pope John, then Archbishop Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli, was Papal Nuncio in Paris, from December 1944 to January 1953.
When on January 12, 1953 the late Pope Pius XII elevated Archbishop Roncalli to the College of Cardinals. it was President Auriol who, following the tradition in Catholic countries, presented him with his red biretta at the Elysee Palace in Paris. Three days later Cardinal Roncalli was named Patriarch of Venice.
"We were great friends before that," M. Auriol said, "and when he left for Venice we both knew our friendship would continue." M. Auriol became a frequent visitor to Cardinal Roncalli's "open house" in Venice, where Venetians were surprised by the affectionate way in which the two spiritual "opposites" greeted each other.
M. Auriol told how the Patriarch had once shown him a small, poorly furnished room in which he worked. "Almost unable to speak, he explained that it was the room which Pope St. Pius X had also occupied when he was Patriarch," M. Auriol added.
"Here was the man I had known in Paris as the able Dean of the Diplomatic Corps, and the cultural humanist. But I realised, there in Venice, that he was still the humble priest and the essence of piety."
AFTER KEEPING a fascinated eye on Rome's recent attempt to solve its centre-of-city traffic chaos, I accept without question the statement that the only people who ever solved any Roman traffic problem were the Gauls. They burned Rome to the ground.
A social sense among Romans being non-existent, the most recent 20th century manoeuvre was doomed from the start; in fact, newspapers were loudly condemning it as a failure even before the opening day of the "pedestrian island" from which all traffic was barred.
Motorists, of course, used to doing what they like how they like—it's called "individualism" here—couldn't wait to
blare their horns and "rev." up their engines in violent protest against something which might have been aimed at the common good but, so far as they were concerned, was really contrived to frustrate them—individually, that is.
It is an old rule in Rome that the common good is no good. It's every man for himself here. Well, now that the experiment has failed, Rome has returned to normal. That means the usual four-times-aday traffic jams and the general chaos that existed before the
added chaos that attended the "pedestrian island" fiasco.
Roman roads are now so glutted with traffic, a great deal of it appallingly undisciplined, that something will have to be done soon to prevent the entire city coming to a standstill.
Keeping at a complete standstill the lunatics who earn all Rome drivers a bad name wouldn't be a bad solution— for a start.
A 52-YEAR-OLD retired -1-slieutenant-commander of Indian Navy, who practices Yoga to keep fit, was among the 62 priests Pope Paul ordained on the Feast of the Epiphany.
He is Fr. Charles D'Souza. He comes from Malpe, in India's South Kanara district, and for the last four years has studied at Rome's Pontifical Beda College for late vocationists. Throughout its interesting history, the Beda has had a notable percentage of former Army, Navy and Air Force men among its students.
Fr. D'Souza was 23 years in the Indian Navy and travelled to most parts of the world. He retired in 1962 and immediately started his priestly training at the Beda. He had been educated at St. Aloysius College, Mangalore, got his Bachelor of Arts degree at Madras University, and will serve in the Mangalore diocese.
Besides keeping up his Yoga, Fr. D'Souza is continuing his studies of Hindu philosophy and theology, which have long interested him. This will help him, he says, in his priestly work among a predominantly Hindu population.
FR. T. O'DONNELL, S.J., head of the Englishlanguage section of Vatican Radio, celebrated a Requiem Mass on Saturday for the late Abbot Aidan Williams, O.S.B., Procurator-General of the English Benedictine Congregation, who died last month in Rome.
The Mass, served by Brother Ambrose, 0.S.A., of the Augustinian Generalate, was arranged by several of the Abbot's old friends, of whom Fr. O'Donnell was one of the closest. In a very large congregation at the Church of Santa Susanna were many nuns to whom Abbot Williams had taught theology.
Also present were Mgr. J. J. Curtin, Rector of the Beda College; Fr. Sean Kelly, ViceRector of Scots College; Fr. Joseph Gill, S.J., President of the Oriental College; Fr. Terence O'Driscoll, Rector of the Columban College; Fr. Caspar Caulfield, C.P.. Secretary-General for Passionist Missions; Francis Xavier Murphy, C.SS.R., Fr. William O'Connell, O.F.M., Princess Orsini, Mrs. Bernadette Morrissey and Miss Pam C'harlesworth.
ITALY'S FORTUNE tellers, soothsayers and magicians, of whom there are plenty. are hard at work conditioning citizens for the months ahead.
A hag of extremely mixed predictions includes one that England will indeed devalue the pound. another that Russia will be in danger from her own radio-active operations, and another that in Spain the Franco regime will end and Pretender Juan Carlos will become king.
In Italy, Signor Amintore Fanfani, who resigned as Foreign Minister the other day, may find himself Premier, a job he has held before.
A Naples soothsayer says that a mayor will be badly beaten up by infuriated women, but he doesn't say where; the Vatican and the Kremlin will exchange views; a prehistoric animal will be found--alive—in Brazil; there will be a surfeit of deaths among clergymen and generals.
Franceso Waldner of Rome, most quoted of all foretellers, promises no world war in 1966, but pinpoints the Orient, Africa and South America as trouble centres.
BRITAIN'S celebration of the world-wide Christian Unity Week — January 18 to 25 — will be publicly marked in London by a "Rally for Unity" in Trafalgar Square on Sunday, January 23. Catholics, Anglicans. Orthodox and Free Church will participate.
It will be introduced by the Rev. Austen Williams (Vicar of St. Martin-in-the-Fields). The Rev. John Miller Scott, of the Church of Scotland, will read the Scriptures; the Rev. Archpriest Vladimir Rodzianko will lead the Lord's Prayer; Mgr. G. A. Tomlinson (Administrator of Westminster Cathedral) will give the "sending forth" and the Rev. Howard Williams (Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church) will lead the prayer for Christian Unity.
From January 18 to 25, there will be prayers for unity in Westminster Cathedral each evening at 6 o'clock.
On Sunday, January 23, Cardinal Heenan, who is VicePresident of the Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity, will preach at the 7 p.m. Mass.
At the Wimbledon Town Hall on Monday next Bishop Robinson, of Woolwich (Anglican), Lord Soper (Methodist) and Miss Cecil Hastings (Catholic) will discuss unity.
At St. Dunstan-in-the-West Anglican Church in Fleet Street there will be lunch-hour ecumenical services throughout the week, . Speakers include the Most Rev, Athenagoras, of the Greek Orthodox Cathedral; the Rev. J. Stephen Bremner, of the Lutheran Church of America; the Rev. Leif Frivold, of the Norwegian Seaman's Church in Rotherhithe; Fr. Edmund Jones, O.S.B., of Cockfosters; the Rev. Kenneth Slack, of St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church of England, Cheam; and Bishop of Winchester, Rt. Rev. Falkner Allison.
Another unity meeting for London is that being organised by the Church Union at St. Pancras Town Hall in Euston Road on Thursday, January 20, at 7 p.m.
Chaired by the Anglican Bishop of Willesden, speakers include Rev. Dr. Leslie Davison (late chairman of the Methodist Conference); Fr. R. Murray, S.J.; and the Very Rev. M. Peck (Dean of Lincoln).
The enthusiasm for ecumeni President Johnson will travel a lot. America and Russia, says someone else. will conclude a secret agreement. America will also negotiate with Red China for a commercial agreement.
Some genius is picked to discover this year how hair can be persuaded to grow on bald heads. Unfortunately, his mentor doesn't tell us where he is.