Vatican says excommunication ultimatum
to Zambian bishop no longer valid
Vatican Radio via BBC Monitoring and UPI-UK
August 9, 2001

The Vatican has agreed to revoke, for the time being, the threat to excommunicate renegade Zambian Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo, Vatican Radio has reported on 8 August. This happened after Monsignor Milingo, over the past few days, repeatedly visited the Pope's summer residence in Castel Gandolfo, near Rome. The original ultimatum given to Monsignor Milingo stated that if, among other things, he did not give up his marriage by 20 August, he would be excommunicated. The following is the text of a report by Vatican Radio on 8 August

[First presenter] The ultimatum-like character of the Canonical Admonition on the Holy See's part directed at Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo is no longer to be considered such, after the meeting yesterday in Castel Gandolfo between John Paul II and the African bishop.

This was said this morning by the deputy editor of the Vatican Press Office, Fr Ciro Benedettini, while talking with journalists.

The 20 August, the day of the possible excommunication, is no longer a deadline because, as Fr Benedettini explained, the dialogue between Monsignor Milingo and the Pope is a radically new event, which has changed the perspective.

The evolution of the events will now allow the parties involved to take their time to examine unresolved matters.

[Second presenter] We remind you that Monsignor Milingo, after his marriage on 27 May within the Rev Moon's sect, was invited by the Congregation for the Defence of the Faith to interrupt his nuptial bonds and to publicly announce his loyalty to the teaching of the Church, to the practice of celibacy, and to the Supreme Pontiff.

Source: Vatican Radio, Vatican City, in Italian 1200 gmt 8 Aug 01
BBC Mon EU1 EuroPol bc/fmcg/mk