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October 11, 1996     The Message
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October 11, 1996

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ThoMES 26 years of serving Catholics of southwestern Indiana VOLUME 27 NUMBER 6 E October 11, 1996 ebration of World Mission Sunday set for Oct. 20 (CNS) __ World to be observed to the daily church in close to said the the Prop- for the Unit- hop William J. York, nation- .of the missionary in a statement that in parishes country who pray and sacrifice, contributing to the vitality of the faith here at home." Pope John Paul II noted that "every Christian is called to be a missionary and witness." "Faith and mission go hand in hand," the pope said, "the stronger and deeper the faith, the more we will feel the need to communicate, share and witness to it." The "universal character" of the annual collection, taken up worldwide on the next-to-last Sunday of October, can be illus- trated by an $81 contribution i to pets when they die? "" frora an article in the Catholic News Service there may not be pets in heaven, animals do have place in creation," according to an article Please turn to page 5 for the complete from a Rwanda parish for the church's missionary work, said Bishop McCormack. According to the Propagation of the Faith, the needs of mission churches supported by the World Mission Sunday collection con- tinue to grow. In 1995, 17 new dioceses, 14 of them in Africa, were established in the missions, and 19 new seminaries were opened in mission territories. The society said this year's col- lection will be divided as follows: 57 percent for pastoral and evan- gelizing programs in the poorest areas of Asia, Africa, parts of Latin America, and the Pacific Islands through the Propagation of the Faith; 34 percent for U.S. home missions through the American Board of Catholic Mis- sions; and 9 percent for the work of the Catholic Near East Welfare Association. Propagation of'the Faith is one of four pontifical missionary agencies under the jurisdiction of the Vatican Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. Doctors remove Pope's appendix, rule out serious disorders By JOHN THAVIS Catholic News Service ROME (CNS) -- Doctors suc- cessfully removed Pope John Paul II's inflamed appendix and ruled out any more serious intestinal disorder for the 76- year-old pontiff. The pope regained conscious- ness almost immediately after the 50-minute surgery Oct. 8 and "greeted and thanked every- one" on the medical staff, said Dr. Francesco Crucitti, who per- formed the operation at Rome's Gemelli hospital. Crucitti said all of the pope's vital signs were normal during and following the surgery. He said the pope might get out of bed the next day and could be dismissed from the hospital in a week or SO, "It might be even sooner. But let's not forget the pope is in his 77th year," he said. Crucitti said the operation confirmed what he and other doctors had diagnosed earlier this year: that the pope was suf- fering from recurrent episodes of appendix inflammation, which produced symptoms of fever and nausea. "The regional examination allowed us to exclude, once again, the presence of other pathologies," he said. He said he could "categorically" rule out a tumor as a cause of the pope's recent flare-ups. Crucitti expressed irritation with recent Italian newspaper reports suggesting that the pope had a more serious disease, such as cancer, which doctors were either concealing or failing to diagnose. "It's time to put an end to all these fantasies we've read," he said. "There is no secret. I'm here to tell you what the situation really is, and it's exactly as we described it" in previous medical statements. Crucitti said a textbook appen- dectomy was performed on the pontiff. Doctors found exactly what they expected to find: that the pope's appendix had been inflamed and had developed scar tissue. The doctors also removed some "adherences" in the area, scar tissue that sometimes devel- ops following surgery. The pope has been operated upon twice in the intestinal area, after a 1981 shooting and in 1992 to remove a benign tumor, The pope went through the operation well, and all his circu- latory, respiratory, blood and metabolic functions remained within the norm during surgery, he said. The pontiff had about 10 stitches. He was being treated with antibiotics and was receiv- ing the normal therapy for appendectomy patients, Crucitti said. He added that the pope's spir- its were good before and after surgery. "He was always serene," he said. Papal spokesman Joaquin Navarre-Vails, speaking at a separate briefing at the Vatican, said the operation's success was expected at the Vatican -- and it left people relieved. "I think there's relief whenev- er a surgical operation confimns a previous diagnosis. But the Vatican had every trust in what the doctors had diagnosed. There was no surprise," he said. The Vatican spokesman said the pope aw(ke at :; a.m. the morning of surgery and spent some two hours alone in prayer in a private chapel next to his hospital room. At 5 a.m:, he con, celebrated Mass with his per- sonal secretary. " The pope began the pre-opera- tion routine at about 7 a.m., and surgery was completed by 8:40 a.m. The pope had awakened by the time he reached his room and asked doctors how the surgery went, Navarre-Vails said. The doctors then handed the pope the medical repm they had just drawn up for public release; the pope asked a nun standing nearby to read it. According to the medical bul- letin, Crucitti was assisted by three other surgeons, along with a cardiologist and three mem- bers of an anesthesia team. See POPE page 10