Short takes: Missionary attacked and Jesuits on liturgy

by John L. Allen Jr.

View Author Profile

Join the Conversation

Send your thoughts to Letters to the Editor. Learn more

Another Catholic
missionary has been attacked in Turkey. Fr. Pierre Brunissen, a Frenchman,
was stabbed outside the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows in Samsun, on the
Black Sea coast.

Brunissen survived, with a gash in his thigh about 10 centimeters long.

The incident comes on the heels of the murder of Italian missionary Fr.
Andrea Santoro on Feb. 5 in Trabzon.

Bishop Luigi Padovese, apostolic vicar for Anatolia, said the attack in
Samsun was an "isolated incident," and that Brunissen enjoyed good
relations with Islamic authorities. Nevertheless, he said, there is a
"strong nationalism that seeks to create an ever wider distance between
the European and the Turkish worlds."

According to Padovese, the Turkish press reported that Brunissen
attempted to pressure his attacker to convert to Christianity, a charge
also made in the Santoro case. Accusations of proselytism, Padovese said,
have become standard fare in anti-Christian complaints.

"If this was the case, then how come the Christian community in Samsun
is so tiny?" Padovese asked the Asia News agency. "If it was true that Fr.
Pierre used to hand out money to make people come to church… Mass would
have been packed."

* * *

Jesuit liturgical experts from 21 countries have just concluded a third
international meeting on the role that liturgy plays in Jesuit life and

Meeting in Fortaleza in northeast Brazil, the "Jungmann Society," as
the group is called after Austrian Jesuit liturgist Josef Jungmann, worked
on a document addressing Jesuit liturgical formation for the society's
General Congregation in 2008.

The group also addressed globalization, inculturation, and the
contribution Jesuits can offer the universal church in the renewal of its

Fortaleza is located in one of the poorest regions of Brazil, and in
addition to formal sessions and small-group discussions, participants
visited several of the original base Christian communities (comunidades
de base
), joining them for their liturgy and supper.

Founding President Fr. Keith Pecklers of the Gregorian University
completed his term at the Fortaleza meeting and will be succeeded by
French Jesuit Br. Pierre Faure, former Editor of ETUDES. The next
meeting is set for June 2008 at the Benedictine Monastery of Montserrat
near Barcelona, Spain.

The e-mail address for John L. Allen Jr. is href="">

Latest News


1x per dayDaily Newsletters
1x per weekWeekly Newsletters
2x WeeklyBiweekly Newsletters