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Thursday, January 3, 2008


VATICAN CITY, 3 JAN 2008 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed Bishop Patrick James Zurek, auxiliary of the archdiocese of San Antonio, U.S.A., as bishop of Amarillo (area 67,185, population 422,448, Catholics 39,609, priests 48, permanent deacons 47, religious 118), U.S.A. He succeeds Bishop John Walter Yanta, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
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VATICAN CITY, 3 JAN 2008 (VIS) - During the year 2007, almost three million faithful participated in public meetings with the Pope, either in the Vatican or at his summer residence of Castelgandolfo.

  According to statistics released by the Prefecture of the Pontifical Household, a total of 2,830,100 people attended the Wednesday general audiences, special audiences, liturgical celebrations and Sunday Angelus prayers during the course of the year.

  The Wednesday general audiences, held in St. Peter's Square and the Paul VI Hall, attracted 729,100 people. This figure reflects the number of tickets distributed, and does not take into account the thousands of faithful who arrive without tickets and also participate.

  The Angelus prayers of 2007 drew 1,450,000 people to St. Peter's Square - 155,000 more than last year - while 442,000 attended the various liturgical ceremonies presided by the Holy Father. April 2007, the month in which Holy Week fell, saw the greatest numbers of faithful attending the Wednesday general audiences and the liturgical celebrations: respectively 130,000 and 250,000.
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