22 January 2018
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  • 22/01/2018 - CHINA – VATICAN

    Last December, Mgr Peter Zhuang Jianjian of Shantou (Guangdong) was forced to go to Beijing where "a foreign prelate" from the Vatican asked him to leave his see to illicit bishop Joseph Huang Bingzhang. He had received the same request last October. Mgr Joseph Guo Xijin, ordinary bishop of Mindong, is expected to become the auxiliary or coadjutor of illicit Bishop Vincent Zhan Silu. Sinicizing the Chinese Church means supporting the principle of independence and follow the leadership of the Communist Party.


    by John Baptist Lin

    22/01/2018 - INDIA

    Tamil Nadu, Pentecostal pastor found hanged. He had received threats

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    Rev. Gideon Periyaswamy was 43 and led the Maknayeem church. He converted 25 years ago from Hinduism. In the past he had been harassed and humiliated. The Hindus "were not happy with the increase of the Christian faithful".


    22/01/2018 - VATICAN – PERU

    Pope in Peru: Jesus is the antidote to the globalization of indifference


    Francis celebrated his last Mass in Peru before returning to Rome before 1.3 million people. In his address, he urged them not to flee, but to resist the temptation to hide from "daily situations of pain and injustice". He also noted that “Jesus invites his disciples to experience in the present a taste of eternity: the love of God and neighbour. He does this the only way he can, God’s way, by awakening tenderness and love of mercy.”


    22/01/2018 - ASIA

    Oxfam: 82 per cent of new wealth went to 1 per cent of the world population


    In 2017, the number of billionaires rose one every two days. Their wealth jumped by US$ 762 billion. In Indonesia, the 27 richest men own more than 100 million people. China saw a slight reduction in income disparity, but wealth disparity is up.


    22/01/2018 - HOLY LAND

    Week of Unity in Jerusalem: Christians as satellites around the only sun that is Christ


    The week (20-28 January) is currently underway in the Holy Land with Church members gathering at a different venue each day. Each Church members of other Churches to participate. Bridges are built “in truth."


    22/01/2018 - PAKISTAN

    Six churches reopen in Abbottabad, Osama bin Laden’s city

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    The places of worship closed in December in the wake of an attack against the Methodist church in Quetta. Congregations meet in homes or rented premises. The official provincial approval has still not been given.


    22/01/2018 - BANGLADESH

    A million Muslims gathered Dhaka for Biswa Ijtema to seek health and heaven after death

    by Sumon Corraya

    The meeting occurred in two phases in mid-January. The final prayer lasted 25 minutes. Some 4,500 believers came from abroad. The common desire was for the meeting to bring "unity, prosperity, peace and victory of Islam".


    22/01/2018 - VIETNAM-VATICAN

    Improving relations between Hanoi and the Vatican. Msgr.Camilleri on a pastoral visit

    by Paul Nguyen Hung

    "The Holy See is committed to promoting relations with the Government of Vietnam to contribute to the social life of the country". The Vatican delegation meets the Vietnamese Catholics. The Pope shares their joy, success and concerns.


    22/01/2018 - TURKEY - SYRIA

    Turkey launches land offensive against Syrian Kurds in Afrin. Fears of civilian victims


    Turkish soldiers, supported by the anti-Assad rebels and air raids, have crossed the borders invading the region. The Turkish objective is to create a 30 km buffer zone within the Syrian territory. A UN Security Council meeting is scheduled today.


    22/01/2018 - PHILIPPINES-KUWAIT

    Duterte stops workers going to Kuwait over abuse, mistreatment


    Seven Filipino workers died in mysterious circumstances. "Situation no longer acceptable". There are over 250,000 Filipinos in Kuwait, the majority of whom are employed in service industry. Over 2.3 million Filipinos are registered as foreign workers. They send more than 1.6 billion euros home every month.


    22/01/2018 - CHINA-IRAN

    Sunken oil tanker slick extends over 300 sq. Km


    The oil spill spread in a few days. Danger for some marine species and for the migration of whales.


    21/01/2018 - VATICAN - PERU

    Pope in Peru: Young people, the heart can’t be “photoshopped”, because that’s where real love is found


    At the Angelus in the Plaza de Armas, Pope Francis calls on young people to follow Jesus with all of themselves, without discouragement, in the example of St. Martin of Porres, the half-caste saint. Silent prayer for peace in the Republic of the Congo. To the bishops, the example of St. Turibius of Mogrovejo, an indefatigable evangelizer: "Today we would call him a 'street bishop'". To the contemplative religious the invitation to pray for the unity of the Peruvian Church.


    21/01/2018 - VATICAN - PERU

    Pope in Peru: Combat violence against women


    In the Marian celebration in Trujillo, Francis speaks of Mary, "a mestiza Mother, because in her heart all races find a place, for love seeks out every possible way to love and to be loved". He recommends priests and consecrated to remember the moment of their vocation to be, like the apostles, bearers of joy and builders of community.


    20/01/2018 - VATICAN - PERU

    Pope in Peru: before the 'storms' of life, always trust in Jesus


    Francis in Trujillo, the second city of the country, hit last year by floods due to the "Niño costiero". "There are things, as you well know, that can not be improvised and much less are bought. The soul of a community is measured by how it manages to come together to face times of difficulty and adversity, in order to keep hope alive".


    20/01/2018 - UZBEKISTAN

    Mirziyoyev: 52 dead in bus fire, victims of unemployment


    The victims were all Uzbeks. Yesterday, the repatriation of bodies. 30 of them have already been identified. "We still have a lot to do for our people" forced to look for work abroad.


    20/01/2018 - VATICAN - PERU

    Pope in Peru: an integral ecology as an alternative to 'a model of development now overtaken'


    The meeting with authorities. "An outdated model of development [that] continues to produce human, societal and environmental decline" and corruption are threats against hope. Security "stems from the belief that Peru is a space of hope and opportunity ... but for everyone and not just for the few".


    20/01/2018 - CHINA

    Births, workforce and aging: The demographics scare Beijing


    The number of newborns fell to 17.23 million in 2017, from 17.86 million in 2016. The workforce has shrunk by over 5 million units. The social security system is at risk. Tangible signs of the damage of the harsh population control measures adopted by the government in the last forty years.


    20/01/2018 - PAKISTAN

    'By the Moors’, the new book by Pakistan’s youngest Christian writer

    by Shafique Khokhar

    Anee Muskan is 18 and lives in Lahore with her parents. The text is a collection of stories and poems. The author defines herself as a "book addict". Her family’s example; "competition" with her brothers. Persevering in reading and writing just like training one’s muscles.


    19/01/2018 - VATICAN – PERU

    Pope in Peru: Defending the Amazon, its land, its culture and above all its people


    Francis met today indigenous people whose land is threatened by business interests but also vy the type of conservationism that has no place for people. “I consider it essential to begin creating institutional expressions of respect, recognition and dialogue with the native peoples, acknowledging and recovering their native cultures, languages, traditions, rights and spirituality.”


    19/01/2018 - MIDDLE EAST – UNITED STATES

    Mike Pence’s (downsized) visit to the Middle East


    Announced more than a month ago, the US vice president’s visit will not include meetings with Palestinian leaders nor Christian religious figures as a result of the US decision on Jerusalem. The trip will only boost relations between the United States and Israel, as well as evangelicals and Jewish fundamentalists. For expert opinion, it would better if he stays home.


    19/01/2018 - INDIA

    Chhattisgarh withdraws law that would have allowed the seizure of tribal lands


    The legislation was dropped following protests by indigenous groups. The Church is on the side of the poor. Tribals make up about 28 per cent of the State’s population. About 15 per cent of India’s steel is produced in the State.


    19/01/2018 - KOREA

    Call to exempt tuberculosis medicines from sanctions against North Korea


    The Eugene Bell Foundation made the request during a press conference at South Korea’s National Assembly in Seoul. For years, the NGO has been helping in the treatment of North Korean patients with a thousand currently under care. Recently, North Korea’s Ministry of Public Health signed a memorandum with the Foundation aimed at “treating all the patients with multidrug-resistant TB in South Hwanghae Province.”


    19/01/2018 - ITALY-CHINA

    Zhang Naizhong, alleged Chinese mafia boss, arrested yesterday


    32 others arrested with him charged with extortion, prostitution, drug trafficking. He had established a quasi-monopoly of the transport of goods to Chinese companies in Europe. Amazement and silence in Prato.


    19/01/2018 - INDONESIA

    Papua, 61 children dead and 500 sick because malnourished. The Church's commitment (Photo)

    by Mathias Hariyadi

    The diocese of Agats sends two teams to assist and distribute basic necessities in the affected villages. The peculiar characteristics of the remote territory make it difficult and dangerous to reach the most isolated settlements. In Jakarta, some Catholic humanitarian organizations and groups have set up a fundraising program. The Indonesian government deploys military paramedics. Critics of the government, accused of neglecting the remote eastern province.


    19/01/2018 - INDIA

    Vasai, Week of prayer for Christian unity "for the conversion of hearts"

    by Felix Machado*

    More than 1500 faithful of different Christian denominations gathered in common prayer. "In the name of Jesus we are called to overcome all the challenges of division". "The unity of the Christian family is the key to unity in the human family and peace in the world".


    19/01/2018 - RUSSIA-UKRAINE

    The two Churches in Ukraine and the bleeding child

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    New tensions between Ukrainian and pro-Russian nationalists, among the faithful of the Kiev Autonomous Patriarchate and Orthodox of obedience to the Moscow Patriarchate. The spark: the refusal of an Orthodox church in Moscow to officiate the funeral of a child who died in an accident, because he was baptized "a heretic" in the Church of Kiev. Monks of the two Churches blocked at the Kiev caves. Mutual violence towards sacred buildings.


    19/01/2018 - MYANMAR

    Ethnic violence in Rakhine: Buddhist parliamentarian arrested for 'high treason'


    The nationalist politician attacked the government and incited the Rakhine ethnic minority to armed struggle against the government. The arrest occurred two days after the clashes in Mrauk U, where seven local people lost their lives. A Rakhine rebel group promises "serious" retaliation for the demise of the protesters. 


    19/01/2018 - CHINA

    Official figures: the Chinese economy grew by 6.95 in 2017. But doubts remain


    Growth is greater than the government's forecasts. But analysts are sceptical that the figures have been manipulated. Standard & Poor's and the IMF are calling for reforms on state-owned companies, those that absorb the most credit and indebt the state.


    18/01/2018 - VATICAN - CHILE

    Pope in Chile: This land surrounded by the driest desert knows how to put on party clothes


    At the final Mass of his visit to Chile, at the Campus Lobito in Iquique, Pope Francis prayed for "the integration of peoples" in an region that has know emigration and immigration. He called on people to be like servants at Cana – “they too are part of the miracle” – and take care of the poor and those who have a "watered down" life. He crowned the statue of Our Lady of Carmel (Virgen de la Tirana), patron saint of Chile, and received a crosier and a cross made of salt crystals.


    18/01/2018 - EGYPT – LEBANON

    Muslims and Christians meet in Cairo for Jerusalem, 'the cause of causes'

    by Fady Noun

    A conference was held on 16-17 January at al-Azhar. Many prominent figures from Lebanon took part, including the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi. The Arab world is divided between "complicit passivity" and "noisy but ineffective speeches". For a former Lebanese premier, coordinated actions are needed to ensure greater efficacy on behalf of Jerusalem’s "pluralistic identity " and "religious freedom". Card Al-Rahi called for joint prayers, Islamic-Christian interfaith solidarity in the Arab world, and support for the Palestinians.






    Editor's choices

    EGYPT – LEBANON
    Muslims and Christians meet in Cairo for Jerusalem, 'the cause of causes'

    Fady Noun

    A conference was held on 16-17 January at al-Azhar. Many prominent figures from Lebanon took part, including the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi. The Arab world is divided between "complicit passivity" and "noisy but ineffective speeches". For a former Lebanese premier, coordinated actions are needed to ensure greater efficacy on behalf of Jerusalem’s "pluralistic identity " and "religious freedom". Card Al-Rahi called for joint prayers, Islamic-Christian interfaith solidarity in the Arab world, and support for the Palestinians.


    CHINA
    Yunnan: Christians accused of membership in an apocalyptic sect get up to 13 years in prison



    The Three Grades of Servants cult, an underground pseudo-Protestant sect founded in Henan, is especially strong in the countryside. Those convicted claim they are just ordinary Christians and know nothing about the sect. Defense lawyers have been threatened with loss of their license to practice.


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