Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) – This October 22, there will be a solemn ceremony to mark the opening of the diocesan study of the life, virtues, and fame of holiness of the Vietnamese Servant of God Cardinal Francois Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan, who served as Vice-President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace in 1994 and later President, June 24, 1998 to September 16, 2002. The ceremony will be held at 12 pm at the “Sala della Conciliazione” in the Lateran Palace in Rome. Talks will be given by the Cardinal Vicar of Rome, Agostino Vallini, who will preside the session, and Cardinal Peter K.A. Turkson, President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.
A series of initiatives have been planned to commemorate the figure of the Cardinal and to underscore his reputation of sanctity. At 8:30 am on Friday, October 22, in the Church of Santa Maria della Scala in Rome, Cardinal Turkson preside over a Mass for the Servant of God, who was Titular of the church. At 10:30 am, at the Pontifical Lateran University, there will be an awards ceremony for the presentation of the "Van Thuan Awards," for the third time since their foundation. This year, the prize will be awarded to Dr. Juan Somavia, Director General of the International Labor Organization. The “Van Thuan-Solidarity and Development Award,” will be awarded to Bishop Giuseppe Molinari, Archbishop of L'Aquila; Fr. Marcelo Rossi, a young Brazilian priest; the “Fondazione St. Camille” operating in Burundi; the Community of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul in Haiti. At the end of the day, there will be a concert with testimonies dedicated to Cardinal Van Thuan at the Basilica of St. Anthony on Via Merulana in Rome, at 7 pm. (SL) (Agenzia Fides 10/02/2010)