Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Pope to travel to Latin America

Holy Father returns to the continent of his birth

Logos for Pope Francis' 9th Apostolic Journey (Photo Credit: Vatican News)
Pope Francis will be returning to Latin America to interact with the people of the continent. Throughout his journey, Pope Francis will travel to Ecuador, Bolivia, and Paraguay from July 5-13, says Vatican News.
All in all, Pope Francis is to spend 48 hours in each country, and each time he will be involved in a number of “common” events such as an audience with each President; a “sit-down” with the bishops, an encounter with civil society (representatives of business, indigenous people, the world of education, culture); a meeting with consecrated people.
Of course in each country he will also be involved in other events and situations as he is scheduled to visit a home for the aged run by the Sisters of Mother Teresa in Ecuador, a prison (one of the largest in Latin America) and a meeting with members of the World Meeting of Popular Movements in Bolivia; a children’s hospital and a slum area in Paraguay.
Pope Francis' trip will essentially be a homecoming, in the sense that it is the first time he will be back in his own continent since travelling to Rome for the conclave in 2013. Pope Francis will speak in his own language of Spanish during the trip.

Pro-life law blocked by US Supreme Court

Abortion clinics remain open after the US Supreme Court put new measures on hold

A group of Pro-lifers protest in Texas. (Photo Credit: Reuters)
 The US Supreme Court has allowed several abortion clinics in Texas to remain open, despite not falling under the new restrictions that were due on July 1, stated BBC News.
The justices voted 5-4 to grant an emergency appeal from the clinics after a federal appeals court had earlier upheld the new Texas law.
They require abortion clinics to meet hospital-grade standards and for doctors at the clinics to have admitting privileges at a local hospital.
With the justices voting 5-4 to grant an emergency appeal, clinics unable to meet restrictions will remain open until the Supreme Court decides whether it will hear the appeal from clinics.

Canadian musician to perform praise

Summer tour to travel West



Joe Zambon performing. (Photo Credit: Joe Zambon)

A free performance from Joe Zambon, an Ontario based singer, will occur at a local church.
"Joe is a true artist. You can feel the beauty of his heart coming through the beauty of his music. And all beauty leads, if we follow it, to Beauty itself…”
-Christopher West, Author, Fill These Hearts: God, Sex, & the Universal Longing"
Zambon was born with webbed fingers. However, following a successful surgery, he took up the piano and continued on to playing guitar, using his talents to praise the Lord through his reflective folk songs. He will be performing at St. Francis of Assisi on July 14. Coming from humble roots, Zambon performs to share the word of God in both song and story. There will be a special presentation of a film by James Penco, called "Set Apart".

Elementary goalie backstops aspiring Grade 6 stewards


St. Joseph's pupils collect $600 for The Door Is Open and donate more than 650 cans of food

Luca Huynh (in goal) makes a save. In May, St. Joseph's students collected 677 non-perishable items for a food bank. Alistair Burns / The B.C. Catholic.
Western Hockey League scouts take note, there's a rising star at St. Joseph's Elementary in Vancouver: the "King of the Altar Servers." For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

FDA announces additional risks of Essure
A packet of birth control pills is shown in this 2010 photo. CNS / Nancy Wiechec.
After receiving thousands of complaints about the adverse effects of the birth control implant Essure, the FDA announced late Wednesday that it has updated the list of risks and complications associated with the device, and that a public hearing would be held Sept. 24 to evaluate the product. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Canadians for Clean Prosperity gets new executive director
A banner with a face is held by environmental activists in St. Peter's Square as Pope Francis leads the Angelus at the Vatican June 28. Some 1,500 people marched to the Vatican in support of the Pope's recent encyclical on the environment. CNS photo / L'Osservatore Romano, handout.
Mark Cameron, a former policy director for Prime Minister Harper, has become the executive director of Canadians for Clean Prosperity, an environmental think tank. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Budding writers learn about faith


After-school workshop teaches English and builds character

Young students read, write, and draw book covers at an afterschool writing class run by Sts. Peter and Paul parishioner Nancy May. The private tutor started the workshop during last year's B.C. teachers' strike. Agnieszka Krawczynski / The B.C. Catholic.
A Grade 3 student at Corpus Christi Elementary School hopes to write books like Geronimo Stilton some day. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:


U.S. bishops encourage Catholics to maintain witness

A woman opposing same-sex marriage stands outside the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington before the high court began its deliberations. CNS photo / Tyler Orsburn.
Catholics are called to witness to the truth of marriage despite the Supreme Court of the United States recognizing a legal right to same-sex marriage, the nation's bishops said on Friday. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Evangelization means getting your hands dirty
Father Gregory Hrynkiw / Paul Paproski, OSB / Prairie Messenger.
North Americans are generous in giving to charities and supporting programs that help the poor, but they have become disconnected with people, Father Gregory Hrynkiw of Saskatoon said at the annual Ukrainian Catholic clergy retreat of the Eparchy of Saskatoon. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Thomist scholar strives to harmonize faith and reason


Sister Anne Frances Ai Le contributes to the formation of her students' minds and souls at St. Mark's
Sister Anne Frances Ai Le, a Dominican, participates in the 2015 St. Mark's College convocation ceremony. Alistair Burns / The B.C. Catholic.
For nearly eight centuries, the teachings of Italian monk St. Thomas Aquinas have challenged students to examine critically their core beliefs. How to prove God's existence? What is the relationship between Aristotle and Christian belief? Is there a natural law? For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:


Thousands gather to support family, oppose gender theory
Pope Francis celebrates Mass outside Rome's Basilica of St. John Lateran on the feast of Corpus Christi June 4. It became the site of a pro-family rally June 20. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
A pro-family demonstration drew hundreds of thousands of participants to Rome June 20. They opposed the introduction of gender ideology in Italian schools and a bill which would expand the rights of those in civil unions. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Pope's visit to Paraguay has special significance for Rose Frias
Rosa E. Frias, outside St. Mary's in Ottawa. Deborah Gyapong (CCN).
For Rosa E. Frias, the visit of Pope Francis to Paraguay July 10-12 has special significance, now that her dream to open a clinic in her country of origin has come true. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Great outdoors calls young ladies

Campers can ignite their faith
Campers who attend the Crestwell Leadership Camp will be encouraged to ignite friendship by "drowning evil in an abundance of good," said coordinator Anastasia Pearse. Photo from crestwellleadershipcamp.com.
An opportunity for teenage girls to deepen their love for the Lord will return just weeks before school begins again. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Pope to families: If you hide your problems, they'll only get worse
Nuns greet Pope Francis as he arrives to lead his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square June 24. CNS photo / Tony Gentile, Reuters.
Family wounds that aren't dealt with in a healthy and timely manner can have devastating effects on both spouses and children, Pope Francis said, and he encouraged wounded families to work toward healing without letting bitterness build up. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Grace needs to be bred in the bone: speaker
Gordon Smith. Kiply Lukan Yaworski / Prairie Messenger (CCN).
Dr. Gordon Smith, an Evangelical Christian, has been enriched by his encounters with Catholics. He described some of "what Evangelicals can learn from Catholic Christians" during a recent presentation at the Cathedral of the Holy Family in Saskatoon. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Chairman is a 'Good Samaritan'

Geoff Plant surprised at recognition
Geoff Plant (left) receives the Good Samaritan award from Dianne Doyle, Providence Health Care CEO; and John Brozovich, a vice president. Agnieszka Krawczynski / The B.C. Catholic.
Providence Health Care is honouring a chairman who helped usher the organization into a new era. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Pope meets with the incarcerated in Turin
Pope Francis greets the crowd after celebrating Mass in Piazza Vittorio in Turin June 21. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
For Father Domenico Ricca, chaplain of the Ferrante Aporti juvenile prison in Turin, this weekend's visit from Pope Francis was a dream come true. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Pope's encyclical on the environment take fresh approach to dialogue
Pope Francis prays at an Austro-Hungarian cemetery for soldiers of World War I in Fogliano di Redipuglia, northern Italy, Sept. 13, 2014. The Pope in his encyclical "Laudato Si', on Care for Our Common Home," released June 18, said all creation is singing God's praise, but people are silencing it. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
Pope Francis's encyclical on the environment Laudate Si' seeks a dialogue with the whole world and gives new insight into the relationship of human beings to creation, say some Canadian readers. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Vancouver College salutes its 'master artisans'

Longtime teachers Wade Anderson, Gord Penn and Brian Devenport retire
Educators Gord Penn (left), Brian Devenport, and Wade Anderson at a dinner held at Vancouver College June 9. Alistair Burns / The B.C. Catholic.
Vancouver College faculty, alumni, and benefactors applauded three educators who exemplified the school's motto: "Semper Fidelis": Always Faithful. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Shroud of Turin reminds us of all human suffering, Pope Francis says
Pope Francis touches the case holding the Shroud of Turin after praying before the cloth in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Turin June 21. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
Pope Francis prayed before the Shroud of Turin on Sunday and reflected on the role the reputed burial cloth of Jesus Christ can play in Christian spiritual life. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Members of Parliament react to new encyclical
The Usher of the Black Rod stands at the door of the House of Commons June 18 prior to anti-terrorism Bill C-51 receiving Royal Assent.
Pope Francis's June 18 encyclical on the environment led to several questions in the House of Commons that day and to speculation climate change will be an election issue in the fall. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Opus Dei offers chances for men to bond through prayer

for monday

Confessions, adoration, talks, at three churches
Jose Ignacio Ureta Wilson, centre, whose medical miracle is credited to the intercession of Blessed Alvaro del Portillo, carries relics during his beatification ceremony in Madrid in September 2014. Tens of thousands of people attended the beatification Mass for the former Opus Dei leader, who died in 1994. CNS photo / Susana Vera, Reuters.
Men are gathering on three occasions each month at three churches for quiet reflection and to experience the Lord's healing touch through confession. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Mass shooting in South Carolina kills nine
A small prayer circle forms nearby where police responded to a shooting at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C., June 17. CNS photo / Randall Hill, Reuters.
A mass shooting at a historic African-American church in Charleston, S.C., drew prayers and sympathy from the state's Catholics, aghast at the horror of the crime, which may have had racial motivations. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Conscience Motion 590 passes House
Lawmakers in Utah pass a landmark anti-discrimination bill in March which also protects religious freedom. Canada's House of Commons is taking similar action. CNS photo / Jim Urquhart, Reuters.
Members of Parliament voted June 17 massively in favour of Motion 590 that called for the House of Commons to approve free votes on matters of conscience such as abortion and euthanasia. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Unison in Chorus

Christian crowd to celebrate together

Voices Together logo (Photo Credit: The Point)

An upcoming event organized by Evangelicals and Pentecostals calls for a unity among all Christians.
VoicesTogether is a multi-Christian worship and prayer event on July 1 at the Pacific Coliseum. “This year is the third consecutive event,” said Marjeta Bobnar. “It’s a step forward in local Christian unity.” 
“I am the only Catholic there, as [the core] is comprised of mostly different Pentecostal churches,” states Bobnar, who is part of the core team running the event, and also the coordinator for ecumenical and interfaith relations for the RCAV.
The style of praise at Voices Together is influenced heavily by the Pentecostal worship, which is very energetic. Bobnar noted that compared to the traditional Catholic worship, “the worship is very different.”

“It’s very loud,” she laughed. “To see how other churches worshipped was good. Being raised a Catholic, this was a learning moment …to see my brothers and sisters in faith.”

Bobnar noted the similarities to the Catholic Charismatic approach to prayer. “It is in a sense very encouraging. It was an opening [of perspective].”

“If we’d like to achieve Christian unity, we have to work for it.”

The Voices Together event will be held at the Pacific Coliseum from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $12, and are available here. For more, contact Bobnar at 604-683-0281 ext. 50425 or mbobnar@rcav.org.

Summer Blast for Catholic Class


Continued learning an option at local Catholic College
St. Mark's College. (Photo Credit: St. Mark's College)
A local theological college continues to offer education throughout summer vacation.

Maureen Wicken, the coordinator for St. Mark’s College, said that after a three-year hiatus, St. Mark’s is offering intellectual courses to improve one’s faith and increase knowledge.
“Participants will get a world-class opportunity right in their own back yard,” said Wicken. The courses will seek to improve both faith and reason, she continued. “Faith and Reason are like two wings of the human spirit by which it soars to the truth.
Several courses are available for the summer semester at St. Mark’s College, including Scripture, Philosophy, and Solidarity with the poor. The upcoming Synod on the Family will also be featured. These courses will help encourage the attendees to grow in faith and “grow those wings on which they can ‘soar to the truth’” themselves, Wicken stated.

“A day of study in prayer, reflection, and joining the community for fellowship,” Wicken described. “Solid information and vibrant formation will result in your transformation [of your mind and spirit].”

Instructors will include Dr. Sam Rocha, Fr. Walter Vogels and St. Mark's own, Dr. Lynda Robitaille.

Both daily and single week courses are available, and students will celebrate Morning Liturgy of the Hours and daily Mass. Email continuinged@stmarkscollege.ca for more questions.

Joggers raise funds for Advokate

Charity hopes to expand into Mission with help from fundraiser
More than 200 people participated in the Walk for Life at Mill Lake Park June 6. The event raised $35,000 for Advokate, an Abbotsford-based pro-life group. Photos submitted.
A pro-life charity has revealed it hopes to open a pregnancy centre in Mission, thanks in part to a recent fundraiser. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Pope continues his series of catecheses on the family
A gust of wind blows Pope Francis's cassock during his general audience in St. Peter's Square. CNS photo / Max Rossi, Reuters.
Instead of blaming God when you lose a family member, remember that because of Christ's resurrection death does not have the final say, Pope Francis said. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Holy See announces Canadian delegates to October family synod
Blessed Louis and Marie Zelie Guerin Martin, the parents of St. Therese of Lisieux, are pictured in a combination photo created from images provided by the Sanctuary of Lisieux in France. Pope Francis is expected to canonize the couple during the world Synod of Bishops on the family in October. CNS photo / courtesy of Sanctuary of Lisieux.
The Holy See released on June 16 the names of the Canadian delegates to the upcoming synod on the family taking place in Rome October 4-25. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Vocations directors bond over pretzels

New York summit shows there are many signs of hope
Father Bryan Duggan, the archdiocesan vocations director (second from left), stands with other priests at a vocations directors conference in New York City. More than 250 vocations workers attended. Photo courtesy of Father Bryan Duggan.
"Our seminary is full!" announced Father Brian Doerr, Vice Rector of Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Maryland, "And we are not alone: 14 major seminaries in the United States are operating at capacity." For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Encyclical on the Environment: Pope says people silencing the song of creation

In his new encyclical on the environment, Pope Francis slams attacks against human life such as abortion, embryonic experimentation, and population control, saying that respect for creation and human dignity go hand in hand. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Rallies protest refugee health-care cuts
Doctor Doug Gruner led a rally of about 150 who demonstrated on Parliament Hill against federal cuts to refugee health care. He is shown here with his children. Deborah Gyapong (CCN).
About 150 people, including doctors, health-care professionals, and lawyers, gathered on Parliament Hill June 15 to protest 2012 federal government cuts to refugee health care. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Laval professor lectures on the generational divide

Dr. Elaine Champagne ponders: what are youth looking for in their lives? How can adults help them?
Dr. Champagne recalls the first chapter of the Gospel of John, when Jesus asks His disciples, "What are you looking for?" a question relevant for youth today. Alistair Burns / The B.C. Catholic.
A Laval University professor asked a group of catechism teachers and lay Dominicans to reflect on profound questions from the perspective of youth. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Cardinal Muller warns against adapting Church from Christ's way
Cardinal Gerhard Muller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, left centre, joins other prelates during the celebration of the feast of Corpus Christi outside the Basilica of St. John Lateran in Rome June 4. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
Cardinal Gerhard Muller has spoken out firmly against trying to adapt the Church's teaching to today's often pagan lifestyles, saying such an approach introduces subjectivism and arbitrariness. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Vanier Institute of the Family turns 50
Mary Gordon, founder of "Roots of Empathy," was one of the speakers on a panel about love at the 50th anniversary conference of the Vanier Institute of the Family. She said children's needs do not change, even if the shape of the family does.
The Vanier Institute of the Family marked its 50th anniversary June 10-11th with a conference that revealed how much society and notions of family have changed in five decades. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Father Nguyen to launch career fair

Archdiocese of Vancouver served by members of 54 religious orders
Father Joseph Nguyen.
The vicar general of the archdiocese is launching a career fair with a twist. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Pope pays for Rome's poor to visit Shroud of Turin
The Shroud of Turin is displayed during a preview for journalists at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Turin, Italy, April 18. A public exposition of the shroud, believed by many to be the burial cloth of Jesus, is running from April 19 through June 24. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
In his latest act of papal charity, Pope Francis has donated funds for two busloads of homeless and sick pilgrims to visit the Shroud of Turin. They will stay in two charitable centres that offer shelter to the homeless during the winter. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Ottawa resident worked with Blessed Oscar Romero
Photo shows (back row) Jose Escobar (left), his son Norman Escobar, his friend Sarah Du Broy, (front row) Fr. Daryold Winkler, Jose Escobar's wife Josephine, and their daughter Virginia. Photo by Robert Du Broy (CCN).
A former member of El Salvador's national police force, Jose Escobar used to catechize people who were preparing for sacraments in his parish. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Father Duggan reflects on four years of priesthood

Archdiocesan vocations director says religious life is nothing like what he envisioned
Father Bryan Duggan collaborates with vocations office secretary Dominic Giasson-Garcia. "The attraction and desire for the priesthood comes even without a full understanding of what the life is like," he said. Agnieszka Krawczynski / The B.C. Catholic.
It's been four years since Father Bryan Duggan prostrated himself before the altar at Holy Rosary Cathedral during his ordination. On this anniversary, he reflects on four years of serving God's people, first at St. Mary's Parish in Chilliwack and now as the director of vocations in the archdiocese. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Cardinal Kasper backpedals
Cardinal Walter Kasper, the retired president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, greets clergy as he arrives for vespers at the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls in Rome Jan. 25, 2014. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
Almost single-handedly one cleric has turned the Church's teaching on Communion, marriage and divorce into an international debate. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Preacher says Catholics must tell truth about God's mercy
Robert Valiante. Ramon Gonzalez / Western Catholic Reporter (CCN).
As a Catholic charismatic media ministry, Shalom Media aims to use all modern means of mass communication to bring the Gospel to the ends of the world. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Students pledge to help needy children


Youngsters raise nearly $15,000 for missionary efforts through the Holy Childhood Association

Students recite the Mission Pledge, a commitment to pray for, to donate to, and to love poor children in other parts of the world, at an annual Mission Day Mass May 6. Agnieszka Krawczynski / The B.C. Catholic.
Toy sales, walkathons, and saved allowances paid off for hundreds of students, who raised $14,964.30 for children in developing countries. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:


New UN agenda could enable massive global expansion of abortion
During a June 10 burial service at a cemetery in East Providence, R.I., Bishop Thomas Tobin blesses the casket containing the remains of a fetus found in the collection area of a wastewater treatment facility. CNS photo / Rick Snizek, Rhode Island Catholic.
A massive, well-funded push to increase access to abortion worldwide could be underway at the United Nations, and according to one congressman it could silence faith-based organizations which oppose abortions out of conscience. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


EPC urges strong statements against assisted suicide
An elderly woman becomes emotional as Pope Francis greets her as he arrives for a May 2014 audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican. The most serious ailment the elderly face and the greatest injustice they suffer is abandonment, Pope Francis said. CNS photo / Tony Gentile, Reuters.
 Alex Schadenberg of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition (EPC) said he hopes the Catholic Health Alliance of Canada (CHAC) will issue a strong statement against assisted suicide. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Clergy offer two thumbs up to films of various genres


Two Popes included with local priests listing favourite movies

Pope Francis said in 2013 his favourite film was La Strada, The Road.
The B.C. Catholic asked local priests what their favourite films were and why. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:


A family member who cares for a sick family member a 'hidden hero,' Pope says
Pope Francis exchanges his zucchetto with one given by someone in the crowd as he leaves his general audience in St. Peter's Square. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
During his weekly general audience, Pope Francis lauded families for the "hidden heroism" of those who care for a sick loved one. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Canadians say leave 'God' in national anthem

Pope Benedict XVI tells attendees at a diocesan conference at the Basilica of St. John Lateran in Rome in 2011 to not be afraid of their duty as Christians to pass on the word of God. CNS photo / Tony Gentile, Reuters.
A June 8 Angus Reid poll indicates most Canadians approve of banning prayer before official public meetings, but would not approve of removing God from "O Canada." For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Chaplain blesses fishing boats in False Creek

Father John Eason praises sailors' 'sacrificial love'
Father John Eason, chaplain to the Port of Vancouver, sprinkles holy water as he blesses boats. Alistair Burns / The B.C. Catholic.
Ahooh-gah! The loud wail of a submarine klaxon echoed off buildings and boats in False Creek after a chaplain's blessing May 30. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.


Also newly posted:

Pope Francis anticipates ruling on Medjugorje
Pope Francis speaks to journalists aboard his flight from Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, to Rome June 6. At left is Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman. CNS photo / Paul Haring.
When asked by a Bosnian journalist about the status of his decision on the Marian apparitions in Medjugorje on his flight from Sarajevo to Rome, Pope Francis said that after a lengthy study, a decision could be coming soon. For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

Cardinal Burke warmly received in Ottawa
Cardinal Raymond Burke, Cardinal Patron of the Sovereign Order of Malta, celebrates Mass on the occasion of NET Canada's 20th anniversary June 4 in Notre Dame Cathedral in Ottawa. Deborah Gyapong (CCN).
Cardinal Raymond Burke visited Ottawa June 2 to speak at the June 4 20th anniversary gala of NET Canada (National Evangelization Teams). For full story see The B.C. Catholic website.

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